Recap December 15, 2018

Trollskull Manor had a good opening with people from many of the wards coming for that first night. Their new friends Floon and Ranaer came as well as Volo. Even Durnan made an appearance, though it was brief. He said he did not want to give too much business to the competition. Then he smiled and ordered drinks for the room. In their first 30 days they had made a good profit.

Reva and Pixel decided to visit Phaulkonmere in the Southern Ward to see about joining the local chapter of the Emerald Enclave. On the way there, Pixel confided in Reva telling her that she could speak. In fact, Pixel knew several languages. They arrived and were met by a humorless half-elf who led them into the villa. The further in they went the more it felt like they were in the country as o opposed to in the middle of a large city. The half-elf led them into a central garden and told them she would be with them soon. They waited awhile and suddenly they heard a women’s voice coming from somewhere or was it coming from everywhere:

“Welcome, Reva and Pixel. I am Jeryth Phaulkon, Chosen of Mielikki. I am glad to meet you both. Reva, you have been a member of the Enclave for sometime, even before your travels from Neverwinter. Would you be interested in joining this chapter? Reva nodded yes.

“Pixel, you are not a member currently. Do you have interest in joining?” Pixel meowed a yes.

“Good.” Jeryth said. “You will be asked to do quests for us from time to time, mostly involving things outside the city walls but sometimes there is a need for Mielikki’s works inside the city. Stay as long as you like. There is food and drink on the table off to the right. Also, I give you this Leaf Clasp that will show that you are members of the Enclave. Also, I give you each, a charm of restoration. When you are ready to go, please talk with Melannor who will give you your first assignment. May Mielikki watch over you.” And the voice was gone.

They stayed a little while longer and then made their way back to the entrance to the garden. The half-elf was waiting there. They asked him who Melannor is. He replied that is me. I am to give you your first assigment. Outlying farms are being terrorized by a scarecrow come to life. It has slaughtered livestock, chased horses, and spooked farmers. No people have been killed as yet, so the City Guard is dragging its heels. Something must be done.

Pixel and Reva looked at one another and said they would look into it. They asked where the last attack had occurred and Melannor told them it was to the north. They realized that it was a farm almost directly across from Trollskull Manor. They could stop by there and get their friends and then make their way out to the farms to investigate.

They arrived at the Manor House and asked who would like to go hunt a scarecrow. Heinrich and Jasper said they would go. Ryan said he would stay and take care of the tavern. The group made their way to the city gates and asked around to see if anyone was going to the farm in question. One man spoke up and said I am going to a farm near it. I can take you that far. I have a wagon you can ride on. They hopped on and soon they were leaving the city behind. The ride would take about 30 minutes. They asked the folks on the wagon if they knew about the scarecrow attacks. They did. Over the conversation they learned:

Attacks were all over the farmland outside the city. The attacks did not seem to have any kind of pattern. Sometimes it was cows, other times it was chickens. In each case the livestock was mutilated and then left. Never taken and never eaten. No person had been attacked, yet. It was felt that it was only a matter of time before someone would get hurt or worse. So far, it was only a nuisance.

They arrived at their destination. The wagon driver said, follow the road and it is the next farm you come to. You will see the destruction. You cannot miss it.

Sure enough they saw grass torn up, a broken fence and a large stain where a large animal, most likely a cow, had been killed and then slaughtered. Reva examined it and she could tell someone with skill had done the butchering, not the scarecrow in question. As they were looking around, a group of farmers approached. The group introduced themselves and said that they had been sent by the Emerald Enclave to check out the scarecrow. One farmer stepped forward and said thank you for coming. The guard takes their time when it comes to things happened outside the city walls even though were are as much apart of Waterdeep as anyone else.

The group asked more questions. They were led over to a field and were told it was last seen going in that direction.

They entered the field and it did not take long for Reva to find the path. Lt led into a cornfield. It zigged and zagged all over the cornfield yet it was not difficult to follow. Several times it felt as if someone or something was watching them. Soon, the path left the field and they saw just down a path three scarecrows hanging on 6 to 7 foot tall wooden poles. Which one was it? They approached and in unison all three attacked! It took a little time but soon all three scarecrow were defeated. They realized why the attacks were all over the place, there was more than one scarecrow. And there could be more of them out there. Jasper used his Arcana training and determined that these scarecrows were created by someone.

They went back to the farm and let the people there know that things had been taken care of. They then asked if the farmers knew where any other recent attack had been made. They said yes and gave them directions on how to get there. It was not far and they made it there in no time. The trail led them into a wheat field making tracking the creature(s) much more difficult. Suddenly all around them the wheat began to shift and moved and three more scarecrows emerged and attacked. These took a little longer but soon they too were destroyed. Jasper checked and these also had been created. They searched a few more farms but found no more scarecrows.

They went back to Phaulkonmere and have Melannor what they had found out. He replied that he would send other members out to tell the farmers what to look out for and if any other attacks happened the Enclave would take care of things. After a short rest and a small meal, the group headed back to Trollskull Manor.

Jasper had been contacted by Jalester Silvermane a representative of the Lords’ Alliance. Jalester explained that a gang war was currently under way within the city and member of the Dungsweeapers’ Guild had requested protection and the Lords’ Alliance said they would provide. The group was to meet the guild at the Muleskull Tavern on Ship Street in the Dock Ward at 6 bells and guard them while they work. They need to do this for the next tenday.

It was a boring job. Up until the 9th day. Around highsun, two city guard emerge from a nearby alley, being pursued by two carrion crawlers. The group jumped into action while the two guards took up defensive positions where the alley met the main road. Soon both carrion crawlers were defeated. The guards thanked them and they went about their way with no further interruptions. They then made their way back to the manor house for a meal and rest.

Several days later, early one morning, about the time everyone had just begun their day in Trollskull Alley:

Windows rattle as the roar of an explosion fills Trollskull Alley. Charred bodies and anguished screams fly through the air. A thick cloud of acrid smoke billows outward from the blast, which seems to have occurred right outside your door.

The group rushes outside to see what happened. They see 11 bodies in the street outside the Manor lying still in various states of having been burned. Jasper took one look and knew it was done by a fireball. There were screams coming from all around as family and friends came out from the buildings to see the victims and those that had been injured but not as serious as the 11 that were in the street. The group looked around for any clues as to what may have happened and who may have done such a thing. Someone said loudly that the city guard would be there soon. The group did as much investigation as they could before the city guard arrived but they did not find much. As the guard arrived, the group set up a triage area to bring the injured into the main hall of the tavern. They set out first aid materials as well as food and drink.

About minutes later two members of the City Watch arrived. These were not guards. First one was a City Watch sergeant named Saeth Cromley. He was escorting a member of the Watchful Order of Magists and Protectors named Barnibus Blastwind. They were the lead investigators and since the incident happened right out in front of the manor, it ended up being one of their stops.

watch

It ended up being more of a conversation than a questioning. Between the investigators and some of the people who lived in Trollskull Alley they found out the following:

No building were caught on fire but the fireball left eleven people dead

• One elderly female human who was out for a walk (noone recognizes her) • Two cloaked male humans clad in leather armor with sheathed longswords • Two female humans and one male half-elf dressed in plain clothes • One male gnome wearing a burned cloak and clutching a dagger • Two female halflings who were playing a flut e and a fiddle, and two male halflings who were dancing

• The gnome was running from armed pursuers, of which there were three. The third person who was chasing the gnome isn’t among the dead. • The gnome and his pursuers were moving toward the tavern in Trollskull Alley • Neither the gnome nor his pursuers saw the blast coming.

The investigators thanked them for their time and left to interview other people. The group decided to continue their investigation but they would go about it on the down-low. They split to cover the entire area quicker and in hopes of not standing out. After talking with a few of the people who witnessed the incident and following a couple of leads that went nowhere the found out this additional information:

Fala - owner of Corellon’s Crown said “I was watering plants in the greenhouse on the second floor of my shop when the blast blew out some of the windows. Lucky I wasn’t injured! Through the smoke, I saw a cloaked man take something from the body of a dead gnome. then start limping away. He was badly burned and casting glances over his shoulder, like he was afraid someone might be following him. He was headed toward the Bent Nail.” Pixel had gone off towards the Bent Nail. Maybe she would find this mystery person.

Fala

Jezrynne Hornraven - a wealthy noblewoman said “I tell you, it was not a man. More like a puppet shaped like a man. A puppet without strings. It was on the rooftop. It hurled something into the crowd below that caused the explosion. I saw those halflings burned alive! I saw them!”

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Martem Trec - a 12 year old boy that lives in Trollskull Alley told Jasper “Right after the explosion, I ducked behind a rain barrel. Then I heard a ‘plop’ and found this in the barrel.” He showed Jasper a necklace with a broken clasp and two orangish/reddish beads attached to it. Jasper would later figure out that it was a Necklace of Fireballs, with one bead missing.

Martem1

The group met back up in the tavern and pondered over all of the information they had gathered. Jasper became excited and said we can use a Speak with the Dead spell! The party agreed and they all went to the Lords’ Alliance building to see what they needed to do to get one cast. On they way there they decided to cast it on the gnome as they believe he was the target and he may give the most information. It would be at least the next day before a cleric from the Lords’ Alliance would be able to get access to the gnome. I would also cost them 25gp to have the spell cast. They agreed. Casting Speak with Dead they found out the following: (I cannot remember in what order you all got this info)

Dalakhar is the gnome’s name. Dalakhar stole an artifact called the Stone of Golorr from the lair of a beholder known as Xanathar, in a dungeon deep below the city. He worked for the Open Lord of Waterdeep. Talk with him, if you can find him.

They figured that the gnome spoke of the previous Open Lord, Neverember. They knew that they should talk to Ranaer again. They found him at the Yawning Portal Inn. He had heard of the explosion but had not heard any details. When he learned about Dalakhar the gnome he sighed and spoke:

“When the Lords of Waterdeep ousted my father, I thought his long, dark shadow was finally gone for good. The truth is, I want nothing to do with him. But his spies hound me. One of them, a gnome named Dalakhar, had been watching me for months. Then, about two tendays ago, the spy was suddenly nowhere to be seen. My father didn’t trust many people, but he trusted that gnome.

“I spoke to a few of Dalakhar’s friends. Apparently, he was on a special mission to retrieve the Stone of Golorr and was afraid that the Zhentarim and the Xanathar Guild were close to catching him. When he heard about my kidnapping, he wanted more information about the adventurers who had rescued me. I think Dalakhar was planning to pay you to deliver the Stone of Colorr to my father in Neverwinter.”

Ranaer sighed again. They group apologized for having brought up his father again. Ranaer said it was not their fault. He said I have no idea where my father is. I do not believe he is in the city but if he is he is hiding very well. Could be in Neverwinter as well. He was not poor so I am not sure why he would need more money. Perhaps to get back at the Open Lords? I am not sure.

They then went to Old Xobolob’s Shop to do some shopping and to ask him some questions about the city and Neverember. Xobolob said that the old Open Lord never bothered him, always seemed like a nice guy. Others, may not have felt the same. When someone is in power there are always those that do not like him or her.

They sent a message to Volo asking him to meet them at their Tavern. They asked him questions about Neverember and his relationship with his son Ranaer. They talked about what could be in this vault that the Stone of Gollorr would open. Was it a wild good chase? If so, 11 people already died because of it.

They finished their meal, had a few drinks and listened to Ryan perform on the stage. They were not sure what to do next.