The Mountains of Morpheus

Session 15: Snowy Hills and Dales

Overview

The player characters (PCs) returned to the Ashoumite Chapel to return their haul to Brother Benedict. Cevei, Conrad, and Morgran returned briefly, discovered the corpse of Reena: not only mutilated by her kidnappers, but partially consumed by (presumably) ghouls. The PCs returned Reena’s corpse to the chapel, and were compensated by her surviving lover Marcus. They spent the following day recuperating and reflecting on their past month of adventure. Across the city, in a tiny and dank pub, Cicero conversed with a ranger of the city named Morris, offering him the opportunity to be hired by the Old Faith temple of the city, the Temple Ilendra. Cicero encouraged Morris to meet with an old friend, Araceli …

The PCs, including Morris, met in council with Cicero and a trio of high-ranking druids (led by Nestoria, the High Druid) of the Temple Ilendra, discussing further steps concerning the “Rohfa question.” Cicero and the druids agreed unanimously that Rohfa, as a potent mystic, should be recovered and somehow restored to her original selfhood, trapped in a shapeshifting “Chaotic Transformation” as she appears to be presently. The goals, then, are threefold: (1) To locate Rohfa, who appears to be stalking the eastern edge of the kingdom, between villages and the Mountains of Morpheus; (2) To rescue Rohfa before an aristocrat such as Count Arawn or Baron Sata apprehends her, as this may lead to her imprisonment and execution; (3) Find further information about the Sacred and Chaotic Transformation, a peculiar magical condition that the PCs and the Temple Ilendra are, presently, ill-equipped to understand.

To accomplish goal #1, the Temple Ilendra would dispatch several druids across eastern Strigis, in hopes of discerning her exact location. The PCs, however, will concentrate on goal #3, by visiting a Lord Falconna, a local-level lord who staunchly supports the Old Faith. Nestoria explained that Lord Falconna somehow managed to acquire a series of mystical druidic tomes following the war, and he may be (on account of his spiritual allegiance) persuaded to share such knowledge with the temple. Therefore, the PCs were assigned to spend about two to three weeks traveling, to Lord Falconna’s fiefdom southern Strigis and back to urban Strigis.

Notwithstanding several peculiar encounters across the snowy hills and dales across Strigis, the PCs reached the village of Quick Stag, near the moorlands. As Conrad had a weak but personal relationship to Lord Falconna, he and Araceli introduced themselves to the soldier attending the lord’s manor. They were promptly told that they should return at the evening, when they might dine, drink, and converse more freely with his lordship …

Details

Araceli availed himself of the magical services of the Old Faith temple, and partially recovered from the wounds inflicted by the Vengeful Ones in the Ashoumite catacombs. He was not charged money for this (expensive) service, with the understanding that he would contribute his skills to the temple’s service. (Weaseling out of this agreement might damage his credibility with the temple.) Araceli was also forthright about the PCs’ recent actions in the Ashoumite catacombs.

Morgran sought out the counsel of one of the few dwarvish priests (perhaps the only one) in the dwarvish ghetto of Strigis, near the slums. He and Father Farin discussed Morgran’s past actions, and what actions might constitute appropriate penance; the older priest eventually counseled Morgran to regularly pray to his ancestors for guidance, and be more circumspect about taking mortal life.

The PCs investigated a ruined tower just south of Khrysmnara, which recalled a tower of which they dreamed in the Mountains of Morpheus: that of a wizard conducting magical experiments on a captured gnolls. They found, however, that the ruins contained only a ravenous mimic, and a bizarre, old, tattered painting of Morpheus — the trickster god of the Mountains — that seemed to enchant Araceli with an inexplicable, murderous rage. After an unpredictable scuffle, the PCs destroyed the mimic, torched the painting, and fled the tower’s basement. In the same night, they were encountered by a group of armed humans that claimed to be a patrol searching for bandits. A potential altercation was defused, as the group didn’t seem eager to tussle with the PCs.

The PCs encountered, on the road, a group of six humans who insinuated that they were bandits, and seemed to regard them as of a similar profession. (They asked: “Are you a hound or a sheep?” Conrad replied, “I’m a fox.”) Nevertheless, the two parties did not trust each other, and parted ways. One of the bandits told Cevei that if they needed a fence, they might ask for “Nicky” in the village of Quick Stag (though how they might gain her confidence, not being acquainted even by proxy with her, is uncertain).

Araceli and Conrad noticed that Lord Falconna was master of a pet wyvern, named “Skip.” It appeared to enjoy raw fish.

The party stored:

  • Marten’s Right Hand, in the care of the Temple Ilendra.

The party gained:

  • Various ordinary supplies for their journey, including a large sack of trail rations, bacon, and cheese;
  • Two mules;
  • An ornate dagger (worth perhaps 40 gp in Strigis), given by Cicero as a possible object for a bribe;
  • A bottle of whiskey (worth perhaps 20 gp), also given by Cicero for the same purpose.
  • 20 gp each (as payment in advance for their work), plus 20 gp for the whole group as a stipend.

The party’s adventuring bill for this session is 0 gp: They should assume that they sufficient food to last them for at least 20 days or so.

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