The adventure continues! Last time, our heroes spent a little time in the village of Frostwyck before heading out to confront a suspected witch, who was both not a witch and not alive, and then agreed to investigate a new threat down at the river, who turned out to be an old (and dead) friend…
Play time: 4 hours
- Drew the human Eldritch Knight (3)
- Ray the human Lore Bard (3)
- Ward the human Gloom Stalker (3)
- Rainen the dwarf Beast Master (3)
- Hugo the human Knowledge Cleric (1), Time Wizard (2)
Everyone was stunned to see that the hunched, filthy, discolored figure emerging from the wrecked barge was none other than Shaela the druid! In the tense exchange that followed, Ward and Ray learned that Shaela had been resurrected by Dama Zhadna. The witch had the druid’s soul in her spider-house, and Shaela was charged with killing anyone who set foot in the river. She indicated a dead Kormish reaver trapped in the ice.
Shaela still had her memories. She remembered Ray, and her death. She didn’t want to hurt anyone, but she knew she had little choice in the matter. Ray asked her to bring him the body of the dead reaver, and Shaela summoned a massive thorn to lift the corpse and drop it on the river bank. Ray promised to try to help Shaela, and she let everyone leave in peace.
I loot the body
While there, Ray looted the dead reaver for some manly clothes, armor, and weapons. Hugo and Ward also looted the barge, and discovered it was full of musical instruments and puppets, including enchanted bagpipes!
Hugo also detected magic from higher up the slope. The party soon found a dead humanoid creature with one huge eye impaled on a mass of thorns, with three items: a flask, a smoking pipe, and a flute.
So much magic!
After a brief rest, our heroes headed east to hunt the Vulgoth tiger that killed poor Rufina.
Clash of the Titans
Ward easily tracked the monster to its lair. The tiger’s cave was completely veiled by thick, dirty icicles. Drew shattered an opening with his Eldritch Spear. Within moments, the sleeping beast had awakened and charged out!
Ward loosed flaming arrows and knives. Hugo and Ray blessed and buffed their companions. Rainen hurled an axe and Drew speared away. But the big battle moment was when the Vulgoth tiger and the dire wolf Sasha tore each other apart, fang and claw! Ward dashed in for the fatal blow, with one last flaming arrow to the heart.
The party needed to get the tiger carcass back to Frostwyck so they could sacrifice the meat to the vodnik in the pond and save the village. But the body weighed a ton. There was talk of building a sledge and dragging it.
Ultimately, they decided to skin and butcher the beast. Sasha tore out the organs and ate them. Rainen expertly removed the hide. And then the rangers separated the meat from the bones. Four hours later, they were done, and the sun had set.
Hugo passed the time praying over his holy chain-and-sickle. Drew also harvested the tiger’s skull to wear over his own face to hide his missing nose. Ray kept an eye on the wolves gathering in the woods as he tended to Sasha’s wounds.
With darkness closing in, the group moved the meat into the tiger’s cave and settled in for the night. They threw the intestines and bones into the woods to keep the wolves at bay. The night passed quietly, with one exception.
During Ward’s watch, a severed human hand skittered into the cave, up his leg, and tried to crawl inside his mouth. He failed roll after roll to get rid of the pest, until finally, screaming and flailing, he threw the hand into the fire. The others awoke just in time to not believe his crazy story.
In the morning, they carried their meat back to Frostwyck. The villagers greeted them as heroes and quickly sacrificed most of the meat into the pond to placate the vodnik. They directed the party to the tannery where they dropped off the tiger hide and commissioned a few cloaks and sets of leather armor from Falina.
Hugo returned to the cabin to continue praying all day over his weapon. Drew perfected his tiger skull mask, and went to check on Marta, who was still grieving her missing sister Elisa. He also visited the cabin protected by magic, but was still unable to enter.
Meanwhile, Rainen went to check on Brother Vanya, but was not able to find him. Fearing the worst, she wondered if the vampires had returned. She also visited the wounded Andrei and learned that Vanya had been around yesterday. She also visited Oleg, the large old man at risk of being sacrificed to the vodnik. But he was fine, and she left despite his many pleas for her to come in and make herself comfortable.
As night settled in over Frostwyck, Hugo finally finished his 24 hours of prayer and attuned to the holy chain weapon. It grew lighter in his hands, and its magical properties were unlocked.
And that’s where we ended.
This was a great session. It really felt smooth and easy. I barely had to prepare anything. The players did a great job interacting with Shaela and avoiding an unnecessary battle there. Then they pivoted to a quick and exciting hunt, followed by a bit of hard work and logistical problem solving. We wrapped up in town with a bunch of social encounters that were fun as well as productive. I couldn’t have asked for anything more, and I’m extremely excited for what’s about to happen next. Because it’s a lot.
A whole lot.