Synopsis: Our heroes are called back to New Breckshire by Patrick, who explains that the slavers have been launching guerilla raids on the settlement. They are also introduced to Keh, a wilding druid who has joined up with New Breckshire. The four of them destroy the slaver camp, only to learn that the slavers were not responsible for the attacks. When the return to New Breckshire, the settlement has been completely destroyed by a mob from Old Breckshire, the source of the guerilla attacks. Acting on a dream he had recieved in the night, Patrick leads his flock into the wilderness to the west for about a month until they reach some sort of ancient demonic border marking. Still the press on, and defeat the two stone guardians that are activated.
After the death of Morgheb, our heroes take some well deserved R&R. Jacob explains that he is needed elsewhere to track down whoever decimated the monastary, and the remaining heroes drink thier nights away for the next month.
One evening, mid-revelry, the are approached by a courier who tells them that New Breckshire has been the subject of a series of Guerilla raids. Patrick wants our heroes back. Vestas immediately heads off in a sprint, but, still being inebriated, smacks into the trips over a door on the way out. This is only a momentary hinderance though, and he takes off down the road. Lennyk and Thevra look at each other, sigh, and begin to gather together thier goods and materials. After a good nights rest, they take thier horse, war pony, and dire wolf down the road, picking up an unconcious Vestas on the way.
The trip takes two weeks.
New Breckshire looks different. There is evidence of new building outside of the main fortress, but it has been burned to the ground. The interior is more diverse. Gnome, halflings, elves – New Breckshire has become quite the strange little town. The population is now pushing 150. Patrick greets them, and invites them to a meeting.
At the meeting, our heroes are joined by Patrick Haven, Dolovar Gray, and Grubain. They also meet Keh, a living tree Wildling. Keh came across New Breckshire about a Month ago, and has since been invaluable in providing insights to surviving off the wild.
Patrick explains that they have been under attack from what they assume to be slavers. They come in the night and light fires, or kill citizens who have wandered off. Unfortunately, none have been captured for questioning, but Keh’s animal scouts have located the main slaver camp, about a week’s journey north. He wants our heroes, and Keh, to destroy what is left of the slavers.
Patrick also suspects that there is a spy in New Breckshire. Grubain immediately says that they should stop letting in so many non-half-orcs, but Patrick silences him. New Breckshire should be a safehouse from prejudice for anyone who needs it.
Our heroes head north to the slaver camp, which is situated on a cliff. Despite Thevra’s quiet and half-hearted protests, the group decides to ambush them at night. The battle is quick but violent, and although nobody was pushed off the edge (okay, except for that dead guy), one person was on fire for about 18 seconds.
They question the captain who explains that after the failed raid on New Breckshire two months ago, the slavers effectively disbanded. A few of them have been hiding out here, living off the proceeds and just relaxing. They know nothing of the recent guerilla attacks.
Our heroes bind the captain and take him back to New Breckshire. However, once they get within sight, they see that the settlement is on fire! Vestas absentmindedly stabs the captain in the face, then jogs towards the action, while Keh screams “Water! I need Water!” And races towards the nearest stream. Lanyk and Thevra again shrug their shoulders then head off towards the blaze.
The town has been completely consumed by flame, but there are few casualties. Evidently an angry mob from Old Breckshire had attacked – they had been responsible for the recent raids. Even though Grubain is furious and shouting for revenge, Patrick is strangely calm. He explains that he was woken up from a dream. In the dream, a voice spoke to him in a language he did not know, but understood anyway. The voice said to take his flock west into the wilderness. They will find peace and good lodgings past two black pillars.
So the next morning, off they go. The whole town and our heroes travel for about a month until they reach the base of a large mountain range. After about a week of following an ancient trail up, a snowstorm hits. But, just when people are screaming to turn back, the two black pillars appear.
They are some kind of border markings written in ancient abyssal, and Lanyk detects some sort of magical barrier between them. Vestas steps through the barrier and awakes two gigantic demonic stone guardians, who have their way with the party for a bit (killing Keh’s bear) before being destroyed.
It was not the first time Vestas had wished for things made of stone to come alive so he could hit them with his hammer. It was the first time that they actually did.
Past the pillars are two chests marked “Tribute” in both ancient abyssal and ancient common. They are filled with magical items and gold coins – the same kind of gold coin that Morgheb paid the broker.
Why are they going this way? Why is Patrick so set on journeying into ancient demonic territory? Is it just coincidence that this same demonic symbol has been hounding our players? The plot thickens…