SACK 3: Blades, Faeries, and Beastmen (oh my)!
Play Date: March 1st, 2012
Matt: Lorenzo Sanzz (Rieklander Apprentice Bright Mage)
Bryce: Thrak (Dwarf Pit Fighter)
Micah: Drwosin (High Elf Sword Master)
Todd: Louis Firkin (Brettonian Agent)
The red sash flew on the clocktower and Thrak answered the call by retrieving the note under the blue barrel in the Marketplatz. The contents simply instructed to get a table for dinner at Shamley’s Hammer; assemble the team and prepare the table for themselves plus one.
Shortly after arriving at the Hammer, an older gentlemen requested a seat at the table. After ordering two bottles of Kislev’s esteemed Praag’s peppered bourbon and offering a toast, he introduced himself as Ryld Argith, an emissary of the Gruber family. Over the course of a fine meal, he explained the family he serves has lost one of their sons. Master Hans, a sergeant in the Krovas army currently assigned in patrolling the Grovod Wood south of Krovas, is two days overdue in reporting from his current mission. While the army will no doubt send a team to search for the missing, the family wishes to have their family blade retrieved. Given the paltry wages soldiers receive, they fear the blade will be lost to them should they find it. And thus, given the family’s pull in Krovas, they are using the resources within SACK to their benefit.
As the meal concluded, Ryld encouraged the party to keep the remaining spirits along with a front payment of 5 gp, money in good faith for the job at hand. Additionally, Ryld provided a map of the current patrol route Hans had been running and a trinket to be placed with Bjorn at his fish market in the Marketplatz; an indication of completion of the job at which time he’ll be in contact for a final transfer. Following success, each surviving member will be allowed to peruse the wares and select an item from the legendary Gruber blacksmiths, a profession which elevated the status of their family generations ago. With that, Ryld took his leave and bade the party godspeed and all success.
Shortly following his departure, a plainly dressed women approached the table and invited the party to meet with her master across the street at the Griffon’s nest. She informed them only that they would be expected and her master can be found in room 6 on the second floor. The party chose to follow through all making their way to room 6 aside from Louis, who chose to remain in the lobby. The lone person in room 6 was a woman who encouraged them to sit and opened with a question, “Are you the group involved in the recent disturbance in the Vonn Gunnar mausoleum?” Thrak chose the honest route answering affirmatively breaking a smile from the unnamed woman. She then went on to tell the party Heinrich (the crazy man whose wife turned out to be a raised banshee) is now missing. While of no consequence, she said she thought the group should know in the event ‘others’ come asking about him.
Small talk dispensed, she told the party the man across the street is not who he says he is, is not a representative of the Gruber family, and whatever reward he promised is unlikely to happen despite any successes your endeavor may result in (successful intuition checks indicated she was being truthful). She continued in saying the task at hand is sanctioned by SACK and failure to comply will end badly for them. In concluding the one sided conversation, she mentioned she believes their actions in the Vonn Gunnar incident have made them a target and to take caution while in the wood; at all costs, do not get stuck out there at night. She hopes they’ll meet again and will make efforts to see they are better informed if they do.
The party left for the wood at dawn heeding her words. An hour or so into their journey, the party found signs of a battle with forces from Krovas though there was little left on the battlefield aside from a stripped, mutliated, half-eaten corpse. Given the decay and lack of body parts, it was impossible to tell if the man was a soldier; however, the arms and armor littering the trampled ground seemed to indicate as such. Continuing on the path indicated from Ryld map, a few hours later Louis, on point, froze as three arrows struck the ground at his feet.
A wood elf emerged from the wood with four of his guard and after making some odd comments about the bunch told them they’d have to come with him. The party made no threatening gestures; the lead wood elf introduced himself as Rey Kildeen and told them they could keep their weapons as they posed no threat, however, the tainted one (Lorenzo) required his hands be bound. While putting up a small fuss, it was decided life was better than death and thus complied. On the way, there was an assault from beastmen. In an impressive display the wood elves, whose numbers were truly hidden by the wood, dispatched of them with ease. Ranged forces pelted the beastmen with arrows and those that got close enough were carved in a ballet of blades.
Upon reaching the destination, Rey Kildeen told Lorenzo and Drowsin they would not be permitted into Canneroc’s grove. Thrak and Louis met with Canneroc, the current ‘fairy in charge’ who told them their presence was unexpected and if Krovas is going to continue to send troops into the wood, they might want to consider a larger force. He went on to tell the pair how the beastmen have mightily increased in number and are defiling the most sacred place of the wood. Such actions have thinned their ranks and as such the last patrol was able to, presumably unknowing, reach far deeper into ‘elf’ territory than they’d prefer. The result was the beastmen, who’ve been gathering/recruiting Rieklanders, stormed the patrol and the skirmish carried into an elf settlement filled with women and young. The elves were mercilessly slaughtered while all the Rieklanders were carried away. Canneroc continued the beastmen aren’t particularly interested in them, however, they lie between the beastmen and Krovas of which the beastmen are certainly interested. He’s torn as he doesn’t have the force to deal with the beastmen army and it seems they will be driven from the wood.
Thrak then asked about the sword which Canneroc found was a silly reason to be this deep in dangerous territory. He told him he didn’t recover the sword from the earlier skirmish but the beastmen took their quarry straight west into the heart of the wood. He granted the group access to simple supplies before dismissing them.
The party took their leave of the elves heading further west into the woods per Canneroc’s instructions eventually finding a large horde of beastmen. The beastmen were herding Rieklanders and have several of their number chained together exposing them to a giant herdstone ripe with corruption. They tried to get a closer look but it seemed to be a foolish task and at this point abandoned their search. Attempting to make their way back, they were made by a pack of beastmen and forced to fight. As they were dispatching the enemies, roars of reinforcements sounded out extending the skirmish. While the first pack were simple ungors, the next round contained gors and a wargor. The clan of wood elves showed up to assist and were successful in helping the party escape. Following the escape, Canneroc presented an ornate blade, presumably their quarry also informing them they put to death most of the humans chained to the herdstone. He advised them to bring the size of the force to Krovas’ attention and that an army would be needed to quell the threat.
The journey back to Krovas was uneventful. They hung the talismen as instructed by Ryld Argith at the fish shop in the Marketplatz and waited for a contact that never came. The mysterious guest from The Griffon’s Nest did make an appearance introducing herself as Greta Sustaryn. She went on to explain how their house mage, Glen Danzig, is corrupt to the core and also a member of SACK indicating dissention within its’ ranks. This, of course, does not bode well for her entire family should the mage be exposed. She believes Danzig is responsible for the Vonn Gunnar incident (the now deceased Enid wzs her sister) meaning he is dabbling in necromancy and working with Skaven. She indicated with some certainty he engineering the quest to retrieve the Gruber sword meaning he also has knowledge of the beastmen in the Grovod Wood. This likely marks him as a major player in the evils surrounding Krovas and a formidable enemy. It’s also unfortunate for the party as they seem to be in his cross-hairs.
Greta told them to carry on, business as usual and as she gathers more intel, efforts will made to contact them.