The next day was bright and cheerful. The party woke up feeling well rested. They were ready for anything. The party headed to Asterisk’s together to get a better idea of what happened in Barovia after they were whisked away. Sylvia, Asterisk’s trusty Manager, explained how the old gods had arrived after the group had been whisked away by Aeon. She told of how they had ripped apart the pocket dimension letting it collapse in on itself and all the people still alive inside. The only reason Asterisk’s had escaped was because they were protected inside their own pocket dimension.
After hearing the gruesome story, they party bought supplies. Aleera bought better armor with light scales covering it for added protection. After shopping they headed out, wandering through the shopping district in Deep Harbor. While wandering, they heard about a festival to take place on the 5th of Alturak, the next month.
The party needed to find a supply store to find out how to send food to the eel people while they brokered for peace in King’s Crest. They found the Copper Bazaar, a general store run by Tommy Greenleaf. Aleera used her charming flair to broker the delivery of a month of food to the eel folk on the island. Just to be safe, they also paid for an added month of supplies and food, in case they had to stay in King’s Crest for a longer period of time. They offered to deliver the first month’s supplies to the eel people and after sailing out again with Captain Sheila Coppertree they let them know that there was another month’s worth of supplies coming. With a temporary peace agreed upon by the city and eel people, the party headed back to the Haven’s Cross guild hall to turn in their first quest.
They made it back in a few hours and turned in the quest for a tidy sum of gold. They also took another quest from the board and resolved to head out in the morning to investigate. The quest was located in the Timberwald, a giant forest north of the guild hall. There was a brewery, Gunduk Brewery, deep in the woods that had been overrun by lizard folk. The party went to bed and prepared for another journey.
In the morning of Hammer 6, the party awoke, ate a hearty breakfast of porridge and sausages, and headed out on another adventure. Karris and Aleera took point on their flying brooms with Kaladrax and Malachi following behind on horseback. When they got within a few hundred feet of the brewery they dismounted and edged forward slowly while Kariss and Aleera approached in stealth from above. Aleera broke off to check out the eerie, quiet business. Upon going closer she noticed that all the doors were wide open and the windows were all smashed in. It looked like the battle, whenever it had happened, was already long over.
There were bodies on the path to the brewery. The bodies were of humans and lizard people alike. Inside was the scene of a bloodbath. Inside, there were only the bodies of lizard folk, twelve dead lizards littered the floor of the abandoned brewery. Aleera notified Kariss and the others. They came inside to investigate and Kess, Kariss’s trusty snake familiar, let them know that there was something upstairs. They followed the undulating snake up the blood slicked stairs as quietly as they could, prepared for the worst. The party exited the stairs to find a hulking, armored Orc and a small gnome interrogating and killing a lizard person. They made their presence known to the duo but were unable to stop them as they killed the last lizard person around.
Without bothering to introduce himself, the Orc let the party know that he knew about the quest but didn’t care about the reward. He said the group could take the credit and the reward and he wouldn’t lift a finger to stop them. He and the small gnome left without waiting for an answer, disappearing into the dense forest as if they had never been there at all. The party discussed the merits of accepting credit for the job or telling the truth and closing the case without the reward. Eventually, they agreed to take the credit and reward. Since it wouldn’t be collected by anyone else, they might as well get it.
With the quest completed and none of the party hurt for it, they headed back to the guild hall. They had realized an important lesson. Time keeps moving and the choices they made had a real impact on other events. They may have saved Raf and many of the sailors from the Jade Lion, but so many innocent human beings had died at Gunduk Brewery because of their choice. That is the burden of the adventurer. They must pick as best they can and hope it is enough.