Having left off before a fight, the party engaged the three duergar. Seeing they were outmatched, one tried to run, to warn Xardorok, but was shot down quickly by party spells and arrows.
Having dealt with the evil dwarves on the ferry, the party decided to head off along the coast to find the lost fishermen. It wasn’t long before they came across a series of caves with the fishermen’s boat, a rowboat, floating nearby.
The party did some searching and found footprints leading to the southern-most caves, although there were large wolf prints leading to the next northern cave. Leaving their axe beaks, the party headed after the footprints, across a frozen river, and coming across a 10′ frozen waterfall.
The party, wearing crampons, began to climb, but not before the half-orc cleric, the silver dragonborn sorcerer, and the gnome wizard fell, cracking the ice (although not falling through it). A strange burst of water that stayed in the air, and the size of a horse, loomed above the three fallen comrades, and attacked the cleric!
A water weird!
The party fought valiantly against it, the cleric nearly dying and being drug beneath the frozen later into the waters below it, but becoming wet anyways due to the creature’s nature.
Taking a moment for the party to dry off and the cleric to change, the party headed to a side cave instead of following the frozen river. The cave they found was filled with bones of varying kinds, but of note was a giant’s skeleton and blood, likely fresh, all over the floor!
Sensing a trap, the party headed across, and, as they predicted, the giant skeleton attacked! The battle was fierce and the barbarian took more than a little damage from the mighty swing from the skeleton’s massive axe. In the end, though, the party was victorious and the giant skeleton was defeated.
Moving onward, they found an intersection, with a path heading to their right, where a light was showing. Deciding to move this way, the party headed further in.
The sight that they beheld was gruesome indeed…
Seeing themselves likely outclassed by an old woman (probably a hag, based on the dead men butchered nearby) and a nearby willow-the-wisp, she engaged the party in small talk, the party seemingly happy to go. Until she started angrily staring at each of them…when the barbarian fell and began making death saves!
The ranger took a shot, whereupon the old woman revealed herself to be a sea hag! The party gazed upon her with trepidation but fought her in any case. That is, until she called for parley, and agreed to give up the cauldron and the location of her hidden treasure, if they leave her to go peaceably. The party agreed, and the hag gave the party instructions on how to go about actually using the cauldron. The party realized, after the hag left, that the cauldron would be nearly priceless in Ten-Towns, where food was a scarcity, especially considering it could feed upwards of 360 people one meal a day. That was half the population of Easthaven!
The party cleaned the cauldron, waiting the appropriate amount of time (until midnight) that the hag wanted to clear out, hunted down the stash of gold that she had hidden, and bounced back out of the cave…to find three of their axe beaks slaughtered, the other three gone, their gear strewn all around, and large paw prints leading up to that cave that was second from the southern one they entered.
The ranger found the three missing axe beaks, and using them, the party made their way back to Easthaven. Realizing what time of night it was, the party headed to the Inn for a long rest, and then became interested in the seance that the halfling “bard” that was there was known to do. Participating, the party actually got to meet the White Lady, through the halfling acting as an intermediary…
During the seance, the party learned the general location of a lost and ancient city, called Ythryn. The spirit warned them that they were not powerful enough to face the challenges therein (cue party jokes of “Did I ask for advice? NO! I asked where the d%@$ city was located!). The party then asked where Xardorok could be found, and were told that he was in the secret dwarven fortress of Sunblight, where the party has a map to, but got confirmation of his location. The last question was how to end the curse upon the land, to which the spirit responded, “Defeat Auril…all three of her…” Disconcerting at the least!
The party decided to head to the Speaker’s office at Town Hall (it was 8 am and still dark at the time) and attempt to sell the cauldron of plenty. After some fierce negotiations, the party was awarded 10 gems worth 500 gp each, with three guarunteed to be diamonds (for future raise dead castings that would likely be needed over the course of the adventure), as well as three axe beaks to replace the ones eaten (likely) by a dire wolf.
As they went downstairs, several of the party noticed the receptionist releasing a flying snake with a note tied to it. Knowing that these are usually associated with the Zhentarim, the party realized that they would be making a grab for the cauldron.
The ranger went back and got the party that was resting (except the barbarian that was still at the Town Hall speaking to the Speaker) and came back, only to find that there were three brutes trying to break in, and the receptionist around the corner as lookouts. The party attempted parley, and when they wouldn’t back down, attacked! After the battle, they noticed the receptionist on an axe beak making a break for it.
The ranger, having a sharpshooter ability, fired two volleys of arrows, one at her, injuring her, and one at the axe beak, killing the beast, and throwing her off, killing her.
Reporting to the Speaker and Captain of the Guard, who were disappointed in the death of the receptionist, allowed the party to go while they had the town militia clean up and posted as guards over the cauldron.
Believing themselves a job well-done, the party finished their rest at the White Lady Inn.
Where will the party head next? Onward to Good Mead? Off to Termalaine? What will they do about Xardorok and the “dragon” he is creating?
Join us next week to find out!