Ninety-Nine Problems

Session 6: Sludge & Sleuthing
"Usually alive people aren't heaped"

Vessa, an information broker sent by the Thieves' Guild, spoke with the party regarding comings and goings around town.  Jinn struck a deal with the agent; hopefully they would have information regarding Malcolm and his whereabouts within a fortnight.  In the meantime, the party concluded that assisting the local citizenry would not be a poor use of time.

Two postings on the local boards caught Micah's eye.  The first seemed to be a rather straightforward plea to recover a lute for Elana, a bard currently located at the Blue Rose.  The second appeared to be a missing persons notice, scrawled by a child, demanding "Where is Michael?" Hoping for some clues as to the lute's whereabouts, or at least a better description of the item, the party began their investigation at the aforementioned entertainment venue.  Chari and Micah led the charge while Jinn took the opportunity to win a bit of coin from the locals.  Oddly enough, the dynamic duo's tactics yielded little useful information.

Undeterred, the group spent the day canvassing Cardale's pawn shops, curiosity vendors, and emporiums.  Jinn managed to get a description of the lute's buyer from the proprietor of Hiuda's Sorcerous Oddities.  Upon exiting the store he and Micah realized that Chari had disappeared.   The monk had taken it upon herself to investigate the disappearance of "Michael".  She had decided to get information out of the local street urchins and, on a hunch, had descended into the labyrinthine sewer system below the city.

Underneath Cardale the party learned the horrifying fate of the missing citizens.  A foul creature had been capturing individuals and dragging them to its lair where it drained the corpses of fluids before leaving the desiccated corpses to be consumed by an otyugh living in the sewer system.  Further investigation of the area led the party to a small tunnel connecting this particular section of the sewers to an area just outside of Cardale harbor.  The same strange symbol tattooed on the imposter guard in Goldendale was etched, almost imperceptibly into the wall just outside the exit.  The party had stumbled upon the cultist's method of transport into and out of the city.

They would need to inform Bartleby, who had opted to continue his research at the Ivory Order of Faith and, consequently, missed all the excitement.


Items Acquired:

Potions Magical Items Other
Potion of Resist Acid Onyx Dog  
Potion of Endure Elements Ring of Friend Finding  
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Session 5: Trips & Trading
"Does he give a secret handshake?"

The party escorted the next caravan from Goldendale to Fitche, where they received a warm reception from the locals.  Bartleby secured passage to Cardale aboard a local fishing vessel while Jinn tied up loose ends in town.  One incredibly awkward series of letters, a rousing Lliiran sermon, and an over-the-top cultist impersonation later and the party was northward bound.

Upon arrival in Cardale the group reserved extended lodging at the Philosopher's Arms and went their separate ways.  Jinn set about converting some of their recent treasures into liquid assets, and making himself known to a few members of the local thieves' guild, including an eccentric milliner and a flamboyant fruit vendor.  Chari accompanied ostensibly as a bodyguard, though her presence raised more than a few eyebrows.

Bartleby set about earnestly ruining the day of several prominent members of town with news of the mysterious orbs' origin.  Never one to shirk his paladin duties, he also took advantage of resources in the Ivory Order of Faith.  An afternoon of diligence in the archives was rewarded with a lead on his quest: the Cup's last known whereabouts put the artifact somewhere in central Galiesia nearly a millennia ago.

Micah, preoccupied with training his new hawk, was conspicuously absent from the proceedings.

 

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Session 4: Spiders & Skeletons
"Circumstantial evidence is good enough for me"

The strange cultists were still at large, and with the party's only witness still unconscious there wasn't much to be done in Goldendale.   Jinn, however, offered to stay behind, suggesting his services might be more useful as an interrogator.   With fresh horses provided on behalf of the mayor, the rest of the party pursued their quarry.

Using Chari's exceptional tracking skills the group eventually uncovered what they could only assume was a hidden base of operations in the forest outside of Goldendale.  Inside, the intrepid adventurers faced untold horrors, including the animated husk of a long-dead giant orb weaver, brought to life by the swarms of poisonous spiders held within.  However, with several hours of lead, it seems that the cultists managed to flee the premises and only monstrous creatures remained.

Weighed down with loot and disappointment, the heroes returned to Goldendale to share the news.  Inside the dungeon they found alarming evidence that the situation had gotten more complicated.  The guards were not, in fact, from Jarrow.  Rather, the true replacements were missing (assumed slain), and members of this group had placed imposters amongst the mayor's ranks.

Jinn had, in fact, confirmed this information while the party was away.  A successful interrogation involving creative use of a disguise kit and silk sheets yielded positive, if disturbing, results.  The cultists were one of several cells receiving instructions from an entity known as "The Goldfinch", who was located somewhere within the port city of Cardale.   These followers received the orb from an individual called Malcolm.  Further confession led the party's rogue to believe that this orb was only one of many…


Items Acquired:

Potions Magical Items Other
Potion of Healing (x4) Bag of Holding Golden birdcage w/electrum filigree
Potion of Water Breathing Cloak of the Manta Ray Ebony mugs with jade inlay (x2)
Potion of Speed Greatsword +1 Maplewood box w/ ivory & snowflake obsidian chess set
Potion of Climbing Chain Armor of Resistance (Necrotic) Gold ring w/peridot gems
  Half-Plate of Fortification Book of ancient Corvethi heraldry
    Letter w/instructions regarding Jarrow guards
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Session 3: Paints & Poisons
"It's Probably Fine"

En route to Goldendale the party dispatched what they suspected were several of Rose's friends in the woods—hideous creatures resembling a child's drawings.  Shaken by the encounter, the party pressed on to Goldendale where they received yet more bad news.  The town was quarantined.  A mysterious illness had forced trade to a standstill.

Bartleby and Micah aided the town's local healer, Dametra Flicke, in easing the suffering of the "swollen sleepers" while Jinn and Chari set to work investigating.  The source of the disease seemed to be coming from a well in the poorer section of town.  More distressingly, they suspected that the cause was not natural.  Bart sent a local page on a reconnaissance mission which, while somewhat ill-conceived and ending poorly for the boy, yielded valuable results.

The following morning the party resolved to investigate the well.  Inside they discovered a disturbing mosaic and a mysterious stone orb resting in an ewer of water.  Micah used Cordyceps to destroy the orb, inadvertently causing the magic essence to be transferred into the sword.  Satisfied that the immediate danger to the town had passed, the group went to inform the mayor.

With the culprits unmasked and the gratitude of Goldendale's leader behind them, the party debated what to do next.


Items Acquired

Potions Magical Items Other
    (2) Silent Rot cultist masks
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Session 2: Acorns & Augury
"I'm Trained in Genre Awareness"

After spending the night in the woods near shore, the party stumbled upon the remains of their former ship.  The vessel was presumably destroyed during the storm by the grindylows still picking through the wreckage.  With Bartleby reunited with Marley and Micah reunited with his sword, the crew headed towards the nearby village of Fitche.  Having secured food and lodging, they set to exploring the town.  Henrietta, the innkeep of the Mangy Minnow, apologized for the lack of quality fare, citing a recent spate of missing or delayed supply caravans .  Jinn smelled an opportunity.

Bart and Micah went acorn hunting in the nearby forest where they met Rose and her guardian Pipkin.  The party reconvened following this brief, bizarre interaction and set about investigating the strange noises emanating from the town's wishing well.  The source was the ghost of a long-dead warrior.  Following a spate of particularly successful diplomacy Bartleby put her bones to rest while Jinn availed himself of her personal effects.  

Armed with acorns and curiosity, the party visited the home of Old Nan, the wise woman who lived in the woods outside of town.  Nan brokered a deal to trade a portion of Chari's luck for information regarding the missing caravans.  Thus armed, the party returned to the Mangy Minnow to decide their next course of action.


Items Acquired

Potions Magical Items Other
    Serina's Map
    gold ring
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Session 1: Barrels & Buoyancy
"The safe word is otyugh"

En route to Jarrow the party is waylayed by their own questionable decisions.  The situation escalates quickly after Jinn is discovered investigating the hold's stolen cargo and the party is confined to their chambers.  Thanks to Micah's subtle negotiation the group is put in barrels and thrown overboard.  All according to plan.

A particularly rough landing leaves the group stranded on the beach in a storm without gear or any clue where they might be located.  One thing's for sure, though: things can't get any worse.  Right?

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