Session Three "A Summons to Mirendale"
The next morning proves to be reasonably pleasant with the weather having finally calmed. Kraftulkin and Dark Angel set about their morning routines as Raed sleeps. Both Tojo and the human Erich are missing, presumably having gone into the woods in search of game. Nearby the unconscious Dariet shows no sign of improvement… in fact he has gained a high fever and begun to show signs of the Taint. Meanwhile Sondraes is actually awake and back to his normal self… a good sign for a change and a great relief to Angel.
As Angel tends Dariet Kraftulkin notes a lone figure sneaking toward the camp, slipping from tree to tree. The figure is as noisy as a newborn water buffalo but Kraft plays it cool and shows no sign of having seen the mysterious figure. Instead he sends a mental probe out to the local wildlife trying to determine who the surprise guest is. The attempt is half hearted as he hasn’t seen or heard any animals in the area recently save his own. Surprisingly enough however Kraft manages to contact something. The creature, though apparently as dumb as a box of rocks, recognizes the mysterious figure as “Master”. Kraft finds communicating with the creature irritating so he decides to take matters into his own capable hands.
Not aware of the strangers approach, Angel continues trying to tend to the ailing elf magician. So distracted is she in her work that she fails to note Kraftulkin taking cover behind a nearby tree as if to relieve himself. Unseen he decides to keep it that way and, with the twist of a though he fades from the minds of those who may perceive him. Never too cautious the dwarf also uses levitate to take the mark of his presence from the snow below. Satisfied he makes his way around behind the mysterious figure for a closer look. By this time the figure, dressed in a hooded gray monks robe, kneels beside a tree just outside of camp. The figure leans oddly on his staff as he tries in vain to see into the camp below.
Unable to discern any details of the stranger Kraftulkin decides to attempt communication. He tries to fool the stranger into believing him a spirit of the woods but his ploy only causes the robed figure to eventually grow agitated and call for his mount… the nearby Dreyback Kraftulkin had managed to communicate with earlier.
Apparently a non-believer of spirits and tiring of the game the mysterious figure turned away from the “Invisible” Kraftulkin and made his way into camp.
Returning to his tree of choice Kraftulkin “reappears” and takes a moment to adjust some memories so the others wont recognize his voice as that of the spirits. Stepping back into camp he finds Angel and the robed figure speaking to one another.
Trust is hard won in this group and a figure who claims to be an innocent traveler has Angel and Kraftulkin on guard. Whats worse is that the figure, who introduces himself as Bloodbourn, refuses to lower his hood and reveal himself. Finally the figure relents and reveals himself to be no less than a dragonman. This shocks Kraftulkin greatly as he has always believed such creatures to be story and myth.
At about this time Erich, having failed in the hunt, returns to camp to find the group has a guest. Still upset with one another over their differing views on life Angel and Erich begin a heated argument over money and morale’s. At one point Erich points out how he saw Angel as selfish when she chose to administer the cure to Sondraes when she did not know what effect it would have. To Erich that seemed cruel and he believed putting the creature out of its misery more humane.
This continues for awhile before Bloodbourn, tired of listening to the bickering, reveals his talent in fire breathing. He is careful to aim his fire away from the strangers but his message is clear. Erich, disarmed at the strangers display, loses momentum in the argument. Angel however infuriated at Erich’s cold hearted comments about Sondraes plods on despite the fact Erich’s attention is elsewhere.
It takes Angel realizing that the nearby Dariet has begun suffering violent convulsions to tear her from her anger. As she and Bloodbourn rush to the Elf mage’s side they see sheets of steam rising from his overheating body. Angel, worn to her last nerve from the events of the last few days decides to give Dariet the cure. She had hesitated to this point. Uncertain of the nature of Dariets illness she had not wanted to make his condition worse. She saw what effect the cure had on Sondraes and could not be sure that Dariet even had the Taint. Desperation and exhaustion finally push her to a decision and as she knelt over the Elf she fought her shaking hands as she tried to administer the cure. Dariet began to choke on the liquid as Angel fought to remain focused in her panic. Stepping back Dark Angel sat upon the ground nearby, seeking a meditative state in which she could gain patience within herself. The second time she attempted to give the elf the cure she was so focused on her task that she was caught offguard when Dariet suddenly sat bolt upright, eyes wide in pain, grabbed the cure from her hands and commenced to drink from it through teeth gritted in pain.
Nearly as rapidly as he woke and drank he again sinks into his bed unconscious.
At the same time Dariet regained consciousness Kraftulkin slipped in the snow upon a root (Or so he claims) and knocked himself out. He was not out long but it was long enough to prove his footing unsure in such snow. Either that or he had finally gone dilusional having mentioned something of a root moving to trip him.
Hearing a horn in the distance Angel sends Sondraes to investigate…. when he returns he is followed my a mounted man. Though the introduction is rough it is soon established the man is a messenger sent to deliver a letter to the first heroes he found. Seeing and recognizing Sondraes near the rode the messenger followed the best he could in hopes of linking up with the Heroes of Falcon’s Hollow. The letter the messenger hands over is a summons requesting the party come too the village of Mirendale to meet with someone called Rictus. The writer claims he has information concerning the disease and needs assistance in urgent matters. As the group is apparently the only Hero types in the area the message was delivered to them.
Wasting no time the party decides to return for the wagons and horses then travel south towards Mirendale. About the time they reach the outskirts of Falcon’s Hollow they are hit by yet another killer storm. Forced to take shelter the group, haunted by memories of their last experience in the Hollow, hurries inside an abandoned warehouse.
Once the wagons and animals are secure the group takes turns at watch as they get some much needed rest.
It doesn’t take long for the groups apprehension to raise its ugly undead head.
Several Tainted have found their way inside, drawn to the heroes by an unseen hand. They are much stronger than any undead the party has face so far but in the end the undead are beaten into a retreat.
During the commotion Dariet awakens and manages to heal Angel as she retreats from the fight. Afterward the reunion is short lived as Dariet is sent back to bed by Angel who believed he was still in need of rest. Oddly the Elfin mage neither argues or protests but bends to Angels will and returns to his bedroll near the fire. The only other time he speaks is when trying to explain to Angel the mechanics of magical healing. Erich, seeing Angel was wounded attempted to heal her by laying on hands. Of course this did not go over well as Angel did not fully understand what Erich was trying to do and her natural aversion to a mans touch was making matters complicated. Only after Dariet explained why the touch was necessary did Angel nervously submit to the touch … and even then all she could manage for Erich was a limp holding of hands. Then again for two who only three days earlier seemed ready to kill each this was as close to a tender moment as could be expected.
It is at this time that both Kraftulkin and Erich witness the black ichor viewed previously by Angel. One of the zombies was destroyed with such force that the icor had exploded across the floor and nearby wall. As the two men watch they see the icor drawing back in upon itself and pooling into a central mass. This time however Erich, acting instinctively, rushes to Angel and takes the cure from her. Coating one of his arrows in the concoction he rushes back downstairs and stabs the now massed ichor with the arrow. Instead of shrinking from the cure the blob seems instead eager to consume the cure and the arrow as well. Afterward the entity again is seen to sink into the ground.
Everyone returns upstairs with apprehension and a desire to stay off the ground. Unease fills the air as the thought of remaining in the Hollow for the storms duration hangs in everyone’s minds. Was it a mistake to stop in this cursed place? Did they have a choice? Will they survive long enough to escape?