The Fort of the Stag Lord was (mostly) conquered and locked down by our group of adventurers. Deciding to err on the side of caution before determining what threat, if any, existed in the basement they bunked down for the night with the rest of the bandits safely unconscious and tied up.
(4th level reached upon resting! Yay!)
The rest of the bandits awoke to find themselves both tied up and with a hangover…and were given the same offer the adventurers had given the others “Give up your life of banditry or face the rope.” The already repentant bandits Topper Red and ‘Silent’ (who really was more of a captive anyways) were set free but chose to hang around anyways. Jex ‘the Snitch’ the gnome, Celthric “Handsome” Kilburn the human, ‘Father’ Avery Tossino the dwarf, Falgrim Sneeg the human, and the hobgoblin soldier Markard Ironmark all opted to give up their lives of banditry…unfortunately the group decided to rescind that offer to Falgrim since they still had a Wanted Poster for him…
“I thought you said you’d forgive my banditry and let me go?”
“We did, we never said we would forgive any other crimes you’ve committed.” Alanea/Korin
Leaving Akiros to watch over the captive bandits the group finally descended into the cellar of the bandit fort to figure out just what exactly this “creepy old man” was. After some misdirection by some scuttling dire rats the creepy old man made himself known by slipping out of the stone wall with a blade of flame in his hand after summoning some Earth Elementals to try and kill the trespassers in his ‘home’. A combination of the elementals and a critical strike from the flame blade nearly killed Valerie but thanks to Sidney stepping up to protect her as well as the rest of the group disposing of their own elementals and rats the old creepy man was finally struck down by a combination of Tarvis’ shocking staff and Korin’s deadly greataxe.
What followed was an accountants dream of counting the piles and piles of stolen (ahem “Acquired” goods – Korin) goods that the bandits had accumulated over their time in the stolen lands.
Heading back upstairs the group was somewhat surprised to find that Jex the Snitch and Clethric Kilburn were dead on the ground. “You said to keep the competent ones around that could be trusted. They were shady.” Said Akiros.
Well…hell. Alright. Since they were ultimately only interested in keeping Falgrim around they offered to let the others go under the promise that they would leave the area of at least 100 miles from this part of Xen’drik and give up their life of banditry. Silent and Topper Red wanted to accompany the group back to Oleg’s at least…Topper agreeing to head all the way back to Stormreach eventually. This was enough excitement as a bandit to last a lifetime. The Warforged Auchs seemed to have attached himself to Alanea, following her around when given the opportunity.
The group made a quick pitstop on their way back to Oleg’s to drop the body (minus the head) of the Stag Lord into the river that flowed past Nettles’ Crossing – the watery-body of the ghost dragging the body into the depths as a burbling “Thank youuuu….” Flowed across the waves of the river bank, the impressive looking Ranseur that the old bridge keeper kept washing up on the bank as a ‘gift’ of sorts for sorting out that whole ghost-revenge business.
Both Sidney and Valerie worked on Auchs’ body over the course of their time heading back to Oleg’s managing to repair him physically though there was still some brain damage left that they would need to work on.
A letter was waiting for them upon arrival back at Oleg’s Trading Post – a request from The Twelve itself that the group should return to Stormreach upon their successful mission of toppling the Stag Lord and finishing their exploration of their chartered space of the Stolen Lands of Xen’drik. Coincidentally since they had just finished that they sent an RSVP back before beginning their own journey back to Stormreach… (stopping off at Bokken’s hut to return his fangberries to him as well as giving Falgrim Sneeg to Septim Garress and fulfilling the Wanted Poster as well.)
What awaited them back at the port city was as grand a meeting as one could expect from the mercantile houses of the Dragonmarked. Strangely though there seemed to be more of a buzz about town – a parade of some kind. Even in the distance the successful explorers could see a large iron cage being dragged through the town containing a humongous blue creature with multiple limbs being shown off as if some prized catch.
“I think someone is upstaging us…” TarvisBut no time for checking that out, there was hob-nobbing to do!
A reward of 5,000 gp and a new charter was handed to the party, granting them the “Right to Rule” the area of Xen’drik they had finished exploring.
“Be it so known that the bearers of this charter, having delivered the northern reaches of the Greengelt from the scourge of banditry, having provided detailed maps of the lay of the land, and having done no small amount of work in the exploration of said land and the culling of hostile monsters and indigenous hazards are hereby granted the right to rule. The nature and laws of rule are theirs to define, and the wellbeing of this new nation is theirs to protect. In accordance for providing a stable land to the south of Stormreach, let there be a generous stipend of funds, support and advice provided to this fledgling nation as a token of the Dragonmarked Houses goodwill, such that future relations between organizations may be mutually beneficial. So witnessed under the watchful eye of the Patriarchs of the Dragonmarked Houses.”
“We will be keeping an eye on your progress, though you are left to your own devices. Within one years’ time we will…check in on you, as well as allow any family or friends to visit you at that time.”
“Please don’t.” – Valerie ;_;
Our pages come to a close on this book, but fear not children for this is not the end of the story. It has only just begun. Come now, join me once again as we learn the continuing fate of these strangers in a strange land…where surely Rivers Run Red.
4270 / 5 = 854 each