The crew makes their way towards Lessyk, the last known location of Andrul, Amarill’s uncle. It also happens to be Birdoswald’s destination. There, he is to pray and try to purge the haunted forest of the demons within.
The motley crew of adventurers enter the town and split up, trying to find a place to stay for the night. Amarill heads toward the Silver Flame Cathedral, looking for arcane books of spells and other things. Birdoswald leads Storm, Arjun and Kat to the inn of the White Poppy, the place where had a room booked for him as a payment for his services, rather than staying with the few Sovereign Host worshipers in the town.
The town has seen better days, but the damage looks recent. Several armed guardsmen patrol the town, with the arrowhead of the Silver Flame prominently displayed on their tunics and shields.
Bellamy enters the Cathedral, looking for the Captain of the Flame Guardsmen. Arandon is his name, he has a scar across his left cheek that doesn’t look like it came from any blade or anything from a man.
“What do you need?” he asks.
“Heard a bit about a Cyran scout group sneaking through the area.” Says Bellamy.
“Cyrans eh? This far from their border? Were they responsible for those kids kidnapped from Zozo?”
“I doubt it. Me and my crew rescued the kids from some kobolds. Seems they was trying to sacrifice her to bring back some dead Dragon. Zarflax or summit like that.”
“Your crew eh? Bring them to me. I’d like to speak with them.”
Bellamy sat there, making small talk with the Captian, telling him the news he’d heard along the road from Aruldusk. At no point did he seem nervous, knowing full well that the Captain was about to bring the Cyran crew right to him.
Once the rest of the crew arrived, Arandon spoke to them of the Haunted Forest and the problem the town had with Shifter raids. Seems that a pair of shifters, Stormfury and Scargash, have been leading raids of the foul beasts into the town, rampaging and killing. The newly anointed Cardinal Krozen sent Arandon and his men here, to protect the town and to root out the shifter threat, destroying every last one of them. Arandon wants their help. To range, scout the forest and report back if they find their den. Not and encampment or enclave, the shifters aren’t human enough for that, find their den and kill them all, he says, with venom in his voice.
After a time, Arandon gets a clearer look at Storm, recognizing some features.
“You. You were the one who did this to me!” He screams. “Guards! Seize them!”
“I’ve never seen you before. You’ve got the wrong guy.” says Storm defensively.
“No, last year you ambushed my men, killing them all. You savaged their bodies so badly that we couldn’t bury them as men, but burn them in the holy Silver Flame instead. We fought, round after round. I defeated you, but you poisoned me somehow. I saw you fall, then my world went black. When I awoke, you had fled like a coward, and I was left with bits and pieces of my men.”
“No need to be hasty here Captain. I can vouch for my man, he’s no shifter. Yeah, he’s a bit rough looking, but not a drop of beastly blood in ’im.” Says Bellamy, trying to defuse the situation.
“Seize them all guards!”
“You’d best not be doing that, unless you want to tick off the Medani.” Bellamy says and he pushes his sleeve up, revealing the glowing Dragonmark and some tattoos.
“We’ll see if he’s a beast or not. Guards, escort these “men” back to their rooms at the inn. Don’t let them out. I’ll deal with them tomorrow, after I’ve made contact with House Medani."
The Rifters, minus Amarill, are led bakc to the inn. There, they are locked away.
A few hours later, in the night, alarm bells clang and shouts of terror are heard throughout the city. The guards bang on the doors, “Here’s your chance to prove youre not with those beasts.” they say as they unlock the doors. The streets are dark, with some torches and lamps burning. Storm, Bellamy, Kat and Birdoswald stand along the second floor balcony, looking over the carnage below.
Wolves and Longtooth Shifters stalk the streets, laying waste to whatever they can find. The guardsmen are no match for them, the wolves pounce on them, tearing their throats out. Two hulking brutes, all muscle and fur, tear the people limb from limb. Storm and Kat jump down, charging a group of wolves and shifters. Bellamy vaults the railing, rolling to his feet and heads towards Captain Arandon, with Amarill close behind the Captain.
The battle is bloody and savage. Kat and Storm team up to slice and dice their way through as many attackers as they can. Amarill unleashes his fireballs among the throng of wolves, both two-legged and four. Arandon and Bellamy fight side by side, as a dark shape looms out of the alley, a pair of wicked looking picks in each hand.
“Scargash.” says Arandon, with a hatred in his voice deeper than that against Storm.
The creature leaps forward, piercing through Bellamy’s protective chain and sends him lurching backwards, knocking Amarill and Arandon to the ground. He follows up with a pair of slicing pick attacks, nearly killing Bellamy.
Birdoswald remains on the balcony, directing his fellow adventurers towards their foes, but taking no part in the violence.
Kat and Storm make quick work of their foes and turn toward their Captain, and the Captain of the Guard. Kat rushes Scargash, blades versus picks in a flurry of blows. Storm brings his fullblade down across Arandon’s back, hacking deep into his shoulder, knocking him to the ground to let him bleed out. Scargash, realizing his raiding party is defeated, turns and runs into the shadows, escaping death however so briefly.
Bellamy glowers at Storm, then reaches down, grabbing the hefty paw of one of the brutes and rakes it across Arandon’s throat.
Amarill notices a familiar sword at Arandon’s side. He takes it out and replaces his longsword. It has his family name stamped into the blade, just like the one uncle Andrul always wore.
The other members of Arandon’s guards run up a moment later.
“Lord no, tha Captain!” says his second in command, a man named Tyree.
“Aye, that big one, with stripes like a tiger did him in.”
“Sure. Bring me some javelins, any kind of throwing weapon. I aim to hunt that bastard down and nail his pelt to the Cathedral doors.” vows Bellamy.
Tyree snaps his fingers and one of the guardsmen rushes off, returning moments later with some Javelins. Relic, Arjun and Birdoswald make their way to the streets, Relic carrying their packs, bedrolls and the like.
“Here, take these too. You never know what you’ll find in those woods. And take this, the Captain’s helm. Wear this as you slay the monsters, avenge his soul.”
EXP: 390, 4140 total
Items: Lvl 8 Rubicant’s Blade – Kaleb
Lvl 6 Helm of Exemplary Defense – Josh
Potion of Dragon’s Breath
2 Potions of Poison Resist