Day 1 to Day 5 – Month of Hammer (Deepwinter) – In the Moonwood
Moving through the Moonwood in light snow and ice, temperatures for 3 days have ranged from a high of 1 degrees to a low of -9 degrees© Snow has fallen sporadically and only a light new dusting of snow has fallen
Overview of session (DM narrative)
After absorbing the information found among the deceased bandits belongings the party wasted no time setting off in search of the boy who had escaped. It had been below freezing for a number of days now and time was of the essence if they were to save the boy, if they were not already too late.
Shortly after noon they moved off looking for obvious tracks. Fortunately there had been no snow for several days and there was a clear trail through the snow. The air was crisp and the temperature below zero so the bandit tracks had hardened into an icy trail.
An urgency was upon the group and they set off on a forced march, burdened as they were with packs, food, weapons, armour and camp equipment the less hardy members off the party were flagging after a few short hours and the pace was relaxed to a normal march.
Kladeson Jet supported by Talis and Ben Delat kept a close eye one the tracks and it soon became apparent that even the reduced pace of the party was faster then the relaxed saunter that the bandits had taken on this trail. Before nightfall the bandits camp had been found. It was obvious that they had stayed here for several days and also obvious why there had been no attempt to hide the trail. The camp site was just north of a dense stand of evergreens which allowed no snow through to the ground, the ground itself was overgrown and covered in old pine needles. The main caravan trail would be somewhere to the south but trying to backtrack from the caravan trail to the campsite would likely be very difficult.
It seemed that the bandits had stayed at this site for a number of days, perhaps while waiting for a likely victim to pass?
The party rested for the evening and attempted to trace the path the bandits took through to the trade route. By dint of hard work and not a little luck they picked up and followed a faint trail through the evergreen forest. After a couple of hours they came to parting of the trails. It was here that the bandits had split to go to their ambush positions on the trade route.
The party made their way onto the road and saw the results of the bandits work before them, two burned out wagons . . . dead load beasts . . .frozen bodies.
A search of the area revealed that the ambush was sudden and deadly. First the load beasts, then the adults, arrows probably, then the children – the little girls died hardest. All of the bodies had been mutilated, eyes gouged out, tongues cut out. Ben Delat thought it was perhaps to avoid any necromantic questioning of the bodies.
Trails were found leading away – It seemed that the boy was not with the wagons when they were hit. A call of nature perhaps, whatever the reason the boy didn’t seem to have lingered, the trail showed him running, one of the bandits in pursuit. Clever boy, he had made use of his size and agility to evade the pursuer until the bandit tripped, the blood trail would seem to show he had hit his head and given up the chase.
The thought came that the boy may have returned to the wagons so a careful search was made of the surrounding area. A still warm bearskin cloak was found within sight of the wagon. The boy had been there recently!!
The party started to erect a funeral pyre and tried to entice the boy back in with the smell of hot food and talk of how they had killed the bandits. After a couple of hours a small movement was seen at the edge of the camp. A boy, perhaps 13 years old was standing shivering, unable to decide between warmth and food or flight. Gently the party coaxed him in, the more charismatic members working hard to gain his trust. Eventually he came out and accepted some food. He was obviously in a state of shock at his ordeal.
The party was now faced with a hard decision. Take the boy back to Silverymoon and miss any possible lead back to the leaders of this foul banditry, or take the boy into a potentially dangerous encounter back at the cabins. Leaving him was not an option.
The decision was made to take him back to the cabin, on the way the boy revealed that his name was Tom and that he had a surviving uncle in Silverymoon. Over the course of the day gradually opened up a little to Talis and Oryeh both of whom had an unusual enough appearance and comforting enough manner so as to pique his interest. He was given a dagger, more to give him a little confidence than for any real protective reason.
Making good time back to the camp the group showed Tom the bandit bodies and the loot they had taken from their victims. On seeing the bandits Tom attacked the nearest body in a wild frenzy, hacking at it with his dagger. When he had exhausted himself he was taken inside.
While Tom was resting the group set about planning for the arrival of the paymaster for the dead bandits. Taking the approach of pretending normalcy at the cabin seemed to be a reasonable choice. A red scarf obviously used as a signal was hung up on the hook that seemed made for it and the waiting began. . . . .
It was on the morning of the 5th of Hammer that the sounds were heard, a small group of five men emerged from the undergrowth.
Two men had long spears carried competently and were protected by chain armour, they were guarding a large man in Plate armour who was armed with a mace. In the lead was a wiry half elf carrying sword and dagger. Bringing up the rear was a hulking brute carrying a greataxe and wearing hide. This was a different class of warrior to the brigands fought before, these men looked tough and competent, not to be trifled with, and carried themselves warily.
The half elf advanced to the front door and called out, he was let in and the party immediately attacked . . .
The session finished half way through the fight . . . no-one down but many bloodied.
The enemy leader has proven a tough nut and his area effect spells are proving devastating . . .can the intrepid group survive . . tune in next week to find out . . .
- Tracked bandits to previous campsite
- Found last victims of bandits
- Rescued Tom (partially – he is now with group during a fight)
- Lay in wait for lead to bandits masters
- Commenced battle with bandit enforcers
|Ben Delat||–||Tom||Rescued Boy|
|Treasure||Total Value (gp)||Notes|
XP = 200 each for successful tracking and rescue of Tom
Next session resumes the fight at the old cabin in the clearing.