The group makes their way into the Royal Quarter, dispite their road weary look, and find themselves at The Sea Lion Pride Festhall. One snooty doorman encounter later and they are seated at a table with an elderly gentleman who introduces himself as Damaris Tolbin, head of the Tolbin Mercantile Company. He bades them to partake of the feast in front of them, a well layed out spead of food from all over Faerun, as he does not enjoy discussin business at that hour on an empty stomach.
During the meal, he inquires a bit about the group, a bit taken aback at such an unusual band of adventurers. Liarra chimes in and, in a elaborate display of exagerated and embelished storytelling, describes their plight as The Fellowship of the Broken bonds, a ragtag group of freedom fighters of the down-trodden slave population of Calimshan. The old man buys into the tale and relates his plight to the group.
“Recently, I procured a few parcels of land outside the city along the road to Saradush along with the manor home that lay there. I had hoped to present it as a gift to my son-in-law as a means to begin making a name for himself as I do not wish my new grandson to live in squallor as his father has. I sent a group of my servants there along with a few friends skilled in décor in hopes of cleaning the place up in time for a social gather I have planned. I had hoped to introduce my son and daughter to higher social circles in order to better improve their standing in society.”
“Unfortunately, it seems the house was already occupied by a band of marauding orcs. Somehow they got inside and attacked my people. Fortunately, one of my servants was out in the forest gathering wood and was able to flee without being caught. He reported it back to me and I sent runners out immediately with the advertisement that now has brought you to me.”
“I am willing to compensate you of course. A sum of 300 Aenar for reclaiming what is the house and rescuing any survivors. Would you be willing to help me?”
Side Note: Ah dialogue. Something I always feel never comes out quite right. But again, with just getting back into the swing of things, I’m hoping this improves with my flavor text.
The group huddles for a moment to discuss their options. They try to negotiate for 400 Aenar (gold), but Damaris explains that his coffers are tight due to problems with his caravans reaching Athkatla in Amn by way of the trade road through Muranndin. Liarra, now acting as the group’s spokeswoman, negotiates a new deal, offering to sign themselves on for Damaris’ next caravan as guards as well as help with hig current problem for 400 Aenar. Damaris happily agrees to the proposal and states he will send a runner to them with a location for lodging for the evening. Meanwhile, he excuses himself to make the preperations, offering to cover the tab should they wish to partake of any further food or drink.
Grengal: “Where does it go?”
Varrack: “The beard”
– Grengal and Varrack on drinking.
Varrack: “Never, ever, get drunk as a Pwent in front of a client.”
Lagazi: “Drunk as a what?”
– Varrack and Lagazi after the dwarf has tied on a few.
Eventually, lodging is provided and the group drifts off to a restful sleep that does not involve rocky ground and watchful eyes.
As morning comes, the group is greeted by a waif with a letter for their leader. Lagazi takes it, discovering directions to the manor home as well as a notice that horses are prepared for them in the stables to aid them on reaching the home as quickly as possible. After tipping the young girl, the group makes their way out of Darromar to investigate the manor.
A chill breeze blows across the open plains as you make your way down the road. The overcast skies threaten you with rain, but fortunately, seem to hold back the torrent. You only hope you can reach the manor before then.
They arrive an hour and a half later near a clearing in a lightly wooded area.
A beautiful house of slate and stone rests atop a mesa of rock in the middle of the clearing. A large stone path up the hill appears to be the only means of entry to the home’s main courtyard and into the home proper. All is quite and peaceful as if no one is home.
Realizing the need for caution, the group leaves the horses in the woods out of sight and begins planning how best to get in. As they are pondering things, Lagazi slips away and scouts out the base of the hill. Fortunately, her skilled eyes notice a certain outcroping of rock that pefectly conceals a secret entrance at the base of the hill.
Lagazi: “Found us a way in.”
Varrack: “Ah! Don’t do that! Tap the Gnome, next time!”
Lagazi: “It’s not like I snuck up on you! I spoke!”
Varrack: “A foot away from me!”
– Lagazi and Varrack outside the manor as Lagazi stealthly returns from scouting.
Making their way in through the secret tunnel, the group comes to a smooth stone wall, indicating that there must be some way into the manor home. Lagazi, who had scouted out the tunnel, makes reference that she found a door and heard some kind of chanting on the other side. The group bickers for a moment on how to proceed which, unfortunately alerts the occupants on the other side. As they crack open the secet door, they realizing the chanting has stopped and the element of surprise has unfortunately left them.
Side Note: Well, turns out this will be a three parter since I seem to want to include extensive detail along with quotes and flavor text/dialogue.