Day 122 12:25PM As Father Pyrlig administered healing to the party, Mittens searched the halls the Mi-Gos came from – there were a series of small hexagonal meditation chambers, unfortunately, bereft of any treasure. Nico sent his ankylosaurus up the hall to search for the strange humanoid monster that had retreated down the hall. Moving across the cavern the ankylosaurus growled and whined as it stepped through razor sharp spike stones pushing up from the stone floor. The ankylosaurus pushed on and moved down the hall, followed by Dwag. Father Pyrlig was able to dispel the magical transformation upon the cavern floor so the rest of the party could follow along.
Coming to an intersection, the ankylosaurus went left to scan ahead as Dwag entered a large hall to the right – it was a scene of carnage, as various human and skum corpses were strewn about, savaged after death, some appeared to be chewed upon. Otherwise, the repellant room was empty of life and valuables. Dwag joined the ankylosaurus which had stopped at a another glassy portal. Dwag pushed through and found himself exiting a cave between the parties’ initial entrance into these caverns and the broken dome. Dwag returned to the party.
The party returned back to the hall, and Dwag investigated the corpse-ridden chamber again, to notice something moving upon him – the creature, known as a gug savant, appeared out of nowhere, but Dwag was quick to engage and alert the party, who came running. With his long arms the gug struck savagely at Damiano and Dwag, forcing Damiano to backpedal to Pyrlig’s healing hands. Dwag and the gug traded blows and even Dwag felt the pain and prepared to backpedal as Nico’s archons came in for support. Before retreating, Dwag took a final swing and butchered the gug.
The party didn’t feel that there was anything else to explore in these chambers and felt that they were pushing the limits of Temujin’s wall of ice. Disappointed that Damiano and Pyrlig were still in the grips of the Harrow Curse, they decided to withdraw to the Splash and determine what they might investigate next.
Day 122 1:00PM Back aboard the Splash, the party healed up under the ministrations of Father Pyrlig, Sandara and Ophelia Blue. Double-watch was set to keep a strong defense while the party remained in the environs of Avalon.
Day 123 7:00AM The next morning, Captain Damiano and Father Pyrlig awoke, to find with the new day the curse had broken. The weight of it upon their spirits was dispelled – Damiano’s errant simulacrums gone, and the remaining Old Salts still served joyfully. Captain Damiano, refreshed, was ready to set to sea with the wind at his back, alive and whole, the curse broken, and the party would return to Avalon to squeeze a bit more plunder from the town before setting a course to Quent – nothing could possibly ruin this auspicious morning! “…What? What do you mean Dwag just beheaded two townfolk?”
Mittens, Nico and Temujin were up in arms at Dwag, who had the sailors round up the townsfolk to question where the mayor’s plunder had gone to? After the party and crew claimed Lady’s Amaranth’s furnishings from her manor house, they set their eye to the Mayor Greedle’s holdings – to find that the town hall and mayor’s house had been flipped. Dwag wanted answers! After the 2nd beheading, a townie shouted out that perhaps Sheriff Rill Anders stole the money, plus he was missing. Non-plussed at the turn of events, the Captain had the party and crew return with their fine furnishings back to the Splash, and prepared to make way.
Day 123 1:00PM The Captain gave Sandara a heading – set course for Quent! The party brought Clarnartus Vilnius the the captain’s quarters and offered him employment aboard ship – which he accepted.
Day 124 4:00PM “Sail ho!, smoke on the water – two ships” shouted Virna from the crow’s nest. A sloop merchantman was on fire and moving slowly – another sloop was quenching its own flames and coming about upon the merchantman. Captain Damaino gave word to chase down the attacking sloop. Dwag noted two light catapults and that it was manned primarily by an orc crew.
The orc sloop was called the Dryad’s Grave, and as the Splash moved in to engage, Fergal primed the guns. Mittens, Temujin, Pyrlig and Nico all took turns preparing to counter any inbound spells. Damiano gave word to the Shale to ensure that the merchantman didn’t escape.
As the Splash closed to 800’ and its cannons fired off at the Dryad’s Grave – Temujin countered an inbound lightning bolt, intended for Sandara! Mittens successfully dispelled a phantasmal killer destined for the captain, but was pelted by magic missiles in return. Mittens pushed himself to repel an inbound black tentacles aim at the main deck – rounds of spells were cast as the two ships closed.
Father Pyrlig controlled the water about the Dryad’s Grave, stopping it dead and allowed the Splash to get into a good position. Fergal’s cannons continued to lash out at the Dryad’s Grave and once the two ships were at broadsides, the Splash’s cannons let go fully upon the orc sailors with shot. A chain lightning passed through the parties’ defenses lighting up members of the party. Nico’s archons flitted about providing modest healing.
As the two ships collided, Nico transported the party to the Dryad’s Graves main deck, as Damiano swung over. A vexed Dwag, within moments, dropped Vakarla, the female orc illusionist, and then the orc captain, Vargus Brack. The party on the main deck was hit squarely in a cone of cold. Then, Dwag heard magical murmurings and a poof – one of the orc mages had teleported away! A few moments later, with Mittens’ intimidation of the crew, and the loss of the captain and first mate, the orc reavers surrendered.
Word was given from the Shale, that the sloop merchantman, The Weatherman, was secured. As the Dryad’s Grave was claimed and searched, two prisoners were found. Haddon Pike, an alchemist and Haneilius Fitch, a surgeon, both were aboard the ship, the Brine Banshee, which was sunk about four days ago. According to Fitch, “We were just south of the Smoker Island, it was a stormy night and something thumped hard into the hull. We realized that we were taking water when the Dryad’s Grave attacked. By the time Captain Morton was slain, and the Banshee taken by Captain Brack, they too recognized that the prize was taking on water too quickly, and left to sink. They grabbed what they could and Haddon and I were captured.” Fitch also offered that we could find the Banshee. "Vakarla had taken Captain Morton’s magic iron ring. Which could help determine where it sank – the Banshee was a well-provisioned ship. The Banshee’s first mate, Xiribal, lost his leg a few days before when a boom let go and crushed him. I had to amputate the limb. With the storm, strangeness of something stalking us and then the attack from the orcs, the leg bone was among by things grabbed by the orcs when we were captured. Fitch added, “I didn’t hear it directly, but overheard the orcs guarding us that Captain Brack was more gruff than usual lately and felt that the Grave was being stalked by whatever attacked the Brine Banshee.”
Day 124 5:00PM With both vessels secured, the Splash made plans to further investigate the the sloop merchantman, the Weatherman.
[end of session 52]