First of all, thanks for a fun opening session. As Lauren demonstrated with her first roll, it can only get better from here … although, on second thought, it could potentially remain exactly the same. As an incentive for you to keep up with the adventure log and the rest of this site, this is where I’ll be handing out an XP award for roleplaying after every session. Each one of you gave me some reason to consider you for the award this week, but with the desired mood of the campaign in mind, I think I ought to recognize Casey and Rob for peppering Kaeleria’s and Thorar’s speech with antiquarian niceties. Elevated prose goes a long way toward setting the scene. So, thank you both, and please add 50XP to your character sheets.
Five adventurers, each on the road for their own reasons, meet in a tavern along a trade road in Hawksete, Alan Wrybeard’s duchy. The barkeep tells you that, a few days’ journey up the road, a Count is offering a reward to anyone who can purge his family’s tomb of the undead that have taken up residence. Alatáriël, Kaeleria, Walt and Keary collect and head west; Thorar, suspicious of their pointy ears, follows curiously.
Along the road, the party is ambushed by three spear-wielding goblins, but kills one and scares off the others. When the mistrusting cleric catches up with them, he reluctantly heals the wounded Alatáriël and admits that he also hopes to burn the undead out of the Count’s tomb. The five continue together. They stay that night in an inn, where they meet four experienced adventurers when one, a bard, sings of their adventures slaying what he calls “winter wolves” and mentions that he knew the bard who raised and trained Walt. Their party set off that night.
In the morning, the party walks downstairs to find a merchant in an altercation with the innkeep. He accuses the innkeep of negligence: apparently, his horses have been stolen during the night. The merchant leaves, and the inkeep enlists the party to bring back the horses and save his metaphorical bacon. After a few hours of tracking the obvious trail, during which time it comes out that Thorar’s hatred of elves stems from his brother’s being nonconsentually sodomized by one some years ago, they hear a shrill whistle from the trees ahead: it’s those thrice-cursed goblins again! At least, it looks like the same goblins; with the greenskins, it’s always hard to tell. While Alatariel tries to hack down the tree, the others try (abysmally) to knock the goblin from his branch. Three other goblins join the fray but are quickly, gruesomely, dispatched. Just a short way beyond them, the party finds the horses tethered near a circle of bedrolls.
The five lead all four horses back to town, their gear apparently intact. The journey passes with little incident until, near the town, the group takes a detour through a grove of oaks. Parting the brush, they see the mauled corpses of the four adventurers met last night at the inn. Kaeleria, struck by the corpses’ pale, shocked expressions, can’t help but notice that they look almost as though the life had left them before they died.