Players: Jaroen (Therai), Davide (Hardok), Elena (Irann)
Missing: Alex (Cor), Jan (Skoya ’Teal)
…we had left our group just after the fight with the undead “dogs” in Undertyr.
After collecting the required ‘fruit’, that appear to be some kind of strange fruit, Irann takes the lead and manage to find the way back without too many trouble. The party gain the exit that is still under the control of the Wavir’s house guards, that readily picks up the fruits and pay the contracted price.
Since this was a “test” job the party has to wait for the next one before going back into action, so Therai decide to take a few days to collect some supplies and go back to the shrine found before and investigate the magical rituals that were described in there.
Skoya and Cor decide that they have some important business in the town and the group split. Hardok pay a quick visit to his old ‘security’ group (the ones that basically contracts body guards out), the news aren’t very new at all. Apparently it seems that the amount of monster prowling the city at night is growing for no clear reasons, and he nobles are hiring more security. So if somebody is in the business of body-guarding, is a good moment. Also, the sentiment in the town is getting more tense, there are rumors of bad management in the farms that feed the city and possible corruption. After this, he escorts Irann around town for some sight-seeing and also to see if they can acquire some more informations about that mysterious medallion, but no luck. Irann’s attitude of inspecting money in plain sight in the streets worries Hardok a bit, but no incidents during the trip. They reconvene with Therai the next morning at the Golden Inix Inn in the Caravan Way in time for the next outing.
Therai has collected supplies for 5 days, unfortunately there was no time to hire an healer but since they still have a couple of the Healing Pills that were provided by Wavir’s house for last expedition, they decide not to wait.
Therai propose to try to knock the ‘fire guardian’ out and enter the shrine, Hardok suggest to get some Fire Resistance potion, and Therai agrees, they get some fruit from a local apothecary (at 40 coins a piece) that suck some vitality (1 healing surge) and provide the same resistance to fire that Tiefling have for sometimes.
The group leave the city and head westwards, the sun is hot and the weather is a bit dusty but it won’t impede the trip. After a few hours the group is approaching the foothills. At a short distance the group notice something like an old ruin on top of an hill.
At first sight it could be the remaining of an old guard tower, but is difficult to see. Therai is keen to investigate but the group decide that is much better to stick to the original plan: first the shrine and then (if there is still time) they’ll investigate the ruin on the way back. As Hardok puts it “the ruin won’t go away”.
Around dusk the group is again at the entrance of the shrine. A quick check doesn’t reveal anything new around (no visible sign at least). Therai goes in to investigate and he is again greeted by the fire elemental guarding the entrance. Therai tries a bit of probing and decide that it is an elemental or a part of it. After a quick discussion, Therai enters the shrine to see how many of these ‘elemental’ are in it and if it is possible to simply whack them and go in or not, Hardok and Irann set up camp outside and checks the surrounding to see if there are other entrances to the shrine but found none.
Inside, Therai decide that the circle he found the first time is the most interesting feature, also he discover that the shrine was “altered” in the past, and the part related to the blood sacrifices has been added to it or something has been changed into it. Some parts of the old ritual have been overwritten or garbled. Below the surface of the blood sacrifice, there is a ritual about summoning and controlling fire elemental.
Therai resurface to inform the others that he’ll stay inside studying the old rituals. Hardok and Irann keeps an eye around, they spot some sort of “flying worms” that are actually scout for pray, but are far enough and do not constitute a problem (yet).
The next day, Therai has managed to figure out how to repeat the ritual that, inside the shrine, will allow him to control the fire elemental enough to let the rest of the group in, while outside the shrine and away from its influence, will simply allow him to summon 4 of them to provide some lights for a minute or something. He emerges again to inform the others of the development, however is too tired to attempt it now, so he goes to sleep. The next day the whole group enters the shrine and has a chance to look around.
They found 2 closed passages that were probably other exists (or entrances) to the place but collapsed long time before. Also, by sheer luck, Hardok notices a fracture halfway in the entrance passage and the wall slides away to reveal an hidden room with some stuff left over and a bag with some money (about 40 coins) and a strange mural showing a Tiefling burning a human woman, paint that Therai explains as a very old trait of his race (not nice huh?).
After another night the group is rested and ready to return with about 2 days left of supplies.
On the way back they pass again along the old guard tower (or what’s left of it). So this time they decide to get a better look.
The group notice a rough trail going up the hill and towards what probably was the entrance. The tower itself is now collapsed and is nothing more than some broken walls with a left over part of the first floor ceiling that allow some cover. There are also traces of corpses that suggest the idea that some predator has visited the place. In fact it seems that a bunch of big lizards have decide to take up residence in it.
Hardok seems to know them and explains that they are called Jhakar, they are ambush predators, quite fast and strong but not intelligent. Therai seems again interested in checking out the ruin, but the lizards don’t seem very friendly. Therai suggest to try to lure them out of the tower one by one to avoid a direct confrontation with the whole group at once.
The group devise a plan of using some meat from the remaining supply tied to a rope and try to “fish” (sort of) one of the lizard out of the ruins.
Irann try to toss the rope and entice one of them, but the plan backfire when the creature bite the rope and turns out to be much stronger than it looks. Therai also grab the rope but their strength together isn’t enough. In the end Hardok adds his weight and pull the rope free, but half of the ‘bait’ is gone.
Therai decide to try himself, picking a different lizard since 3 of them are now clustered together where the first attempt was made, but again he misjudge the strength the the animal and get stuck pulling the rope. Hardok try to distract another lizard shooting a dart at it with his crossbow, but the dart bounces on its hard skin without damage. At that point, having Therai and Irann let go on the rope (that is now being eaten by the lizards like spaghetti), Hardok decide that is not worth it, so he puts away his crossbow, grab his sword and the whole group simply walks away unarmed.