Flame of the Ancients

CS11 - At the Old Wode Inn

The men stay at the Inn overnight, Drake and Darwish in the common area and Rhun in a room upstairs. In the morning Drake takes Sigrid the Innkeeper aside and encourages her to tell him what she knows of the men attacking the road. She is afraid to speak, hinting that there would be reprisals against her and her staff if the bandits found out she said anything. Darwish tries to question a traveling merchant, who had said a companion of his was days late arriving at the Inn, but the man was also unwilling to talk.

They decide that the snitch for Margil’s men must be at the Inn, possibly one of the staff. At one point a man named Oris approaches Darwish regarding the disappearance of his brother Tanen and says he believes the carter at the Inn may be the one, as he was spotted sneaking away from the Inn in the middle of the night. Darwish, Rhun, and Drake stay at the Inn all day, milling about the common and the yard watching and listening for clues.

They observe the carter asking a lot of questions of the merchants about their travel plans, and suggesting to one that he stay at a good spot “in the shadow of Targen’s Folly”. After the carter leaves off work for the day, Darwish sees him duck behind the stable. Darwish and Drake discover that he has slipped away through a hidden breach in the palisade behind the stable. They track him west from the Inn to a wooded area when they hear the sound of conversation and smell a fire.

As they approach the encampment, Drake accidentally breaks a twig underfoot that makes enough sound to alert the men and all goes silent. A warning shot of a black-and-white fletched arrow whistles past Drake, who remains hidden. The people around the fire disappear into the woods, using thrush calls to signal each other. Drake and Darwish investigate the camp and discover the dead body of the carter, stabbed through the throat and face down in the dirt. They find clutched in his hand a distinctive wooden cloak clasp and a bit of torn cloth.

They find a track and follow the men back towards the road, but it grows too dark to continue. They decide to return to the Inn and resume the chase in the morning.

They come back to the Inn and sit with Rhun sipping their drinks, their mood darkened at the memory of the brutal murder of the young carter. Darwish takes up his flute on the stage, playing songs to lift his spirits and to lighten the room.

A group of five rough men enter the Inn and take up positions at different tables. Drake notices that one of them has his cloak tied on with a bit of rope, the clasp that used to hold it having been torn away. One of the rough men approaches Sigrid and pulls her into the kitchen to talk privately. She emerges a few minutes later, scared and apparently having been slapped. For an instant her eyes move to Drake, and he knows that she has told this man of their conversation earlier in the day.

One of the bandits sits across from Drake and Rhun at their table, and wants to know why they were asking about them. He says that Sigrid in now upstairs with one of them, and hints that she may be harmed. Drake refuses to speak with the man, who motions for one of his companions to go upstairs. Drake bolts for the stairs to block the man who was sent up. He knocks the man aside and leaps to the landing. The man draws his sword, as does Drake, and the fight is on.

Rhun, armed with nothing but a dagger, breaks a barstool across the back of one of the men and then pulls his knife and enters the fight. He is quickly beset by two men and is injured but stabs one of the bandits under the ribs. Darwish, who had been playing his flute and aware of what was happening on the other side of the room, sees the fight and drops his instrument to enter the fray. He tackles one of the men to the ground. Drake dispatches the man near the stairs, and then rushes to Rhun’s aid, finishing off the man that Rhun had injured.

Players: Darwish (Dave), Drake (Kevin), GM (Craig)

CS10 - That Bloody Horse

Rhun, Darwish, and Drake decide to wait until the light of morning to search for tracks showing which direction Margil and his gang traveled after they left Targen’s folly. Their intention is to track the bandits and capture Margil wherever he is, since it could be days or even weeks before they return to the keep.

Drake takes first watch and notices the light of a fire to the NW along the road. During the third watch, Rhun notices a rider approaching the keep, and wakes the other two. The rider, a fighting man on a war horse has apparently ridden here at speed seeking the Margil.

Drake descends into the yard to greet the rider, hiding his appearance so to appear as one of Margil’s men. The rider angrily complains that his “master” expected Margil to have already left.

The man becomes suspicious of Drake as he approaches the horse, then draws his sword. Drake goes for his weapon as well and the fight is on. Rhun and Darwish, who had snuck down into the yard while the man was talking with Drake, join the melee. The rider eventually yields, and then slips into unconsciousness from his wounds.

They take the man into the tower and Rhun treats him and stabilizes his condition.

They notice a messenger’s bag tied to the man’s horse, but after some embarrassing attempts to retrieve the bag from the suspicious beast they give up.

They decide it is too dangerous to let the man see them, and not wanting to kill him in cold blood they help him out to his hell-spawned mount and send him away. As the rider climbs onto his horse, Darwish cuts away the messenger bag.

Drake finds tracks leading away from the keep, and they set out after Margil and his men. There is a rough trail that leads north west and then runs parallel to the road. There are signs that the men were tracking the movement of something on the road. Eventually the trail leads to an Inn on the highway and then goes cold.

They enter the Inn and strike up a conversation with the barmaid, hoping to find out if Margil’s gang had been here recently.

CS9 - To Sirendel
Late Spring 798, The Wilds of Sirendel Province

Wherein the Nephews seek the truth about the ruins of Sirendel

Darwish, Rhun, and Drake treat the two men of Lord Manning captured after the attack on the road. The captain’s injuries are too grave, and he is given a preparation of meadowsweet to dull the pain. He dies by morning. The other captive says he was following the captain’s orders, and that they were sent by the Earless of Wayland to kill “assassins”. The Nephews refused to believe the Lady of Wayland would have done this.

CS8 - A Brief Respite
Midspring 798 - Archendale Area

Wherein the Nephews return home to recoup, recover and decide on future plans

Drake and Darwish return to Garmsdale. Upon entering the keep they are greeted by Master at Arms Kern, who is training men in the yard [KM: nice touch Craig]. They meet Bard (who was visibly happy to see them) and report on their activities since last leaving Garmsdale for Wayland two weeks ago to help the Earl’s daughter there.

RB1 - The Night of Fire
Midspring 798, Ironwall/River Kingdom

Wherein a princess becomes an exile in her own land.

Following a night of fire and blood, the Lady Tinshara Balonstead awakens in Lorder’s Grove, overlooking her ancestral home of Ironwall. What has happened is somewhat blurry: there was fighting and shouting, the appearance of a warband clad in scarlet and black and a confusing image of Lord Balonstead, King of Chybisa being led away in chains.

CS5 - The Bloody Road
Late Spring 798 - Southguard

Wherein Drake and Darwish mete justice to Pagaelin hill-brigands.

From a position of safety Carrad, Drake and Darwish confer about what steps to take next. In the end, it is decided the trio will continue to a small country inn, where Carrad knows and trusts the keeper. Arriving at the Weeping Maid, they are not disappointed: out of the way and quiet, the place seems perfect to lay up and rest following a perilous crossing of the Barrow Vale.

CS4 - Through the Barrow Vale
Mid Spring 798 - The Wilds

Arising at midday, Darwish and Drake head off with Carrad and two companions, Owen and Rent. At first they make good time, cutting cross country almost directly eastward in an effort to cut off the fleeing thieves before they can enter the Vale of Barrows.

CS3 - Of Relics of Olde
Midspring 798 - Archendale

Of Relics of Olde

Wherein Drake and Darwish discover the existence of the Sigil of Kaldor.

(Aside: Drystan’s player Zejlko has regrettably decided to drop out of the game, reducing the party to two. To write the character out without killing, it was decided that Drystan had taken Darwish’s good mount (and the satchel of lending notes) and headed back to Hartwood to report to Lord Bard. Hopefully he will return someday in the future.)

As the evening winds down and the first of the sleeping arrangements are being made, a warning bell sounds at the keep. Racing to the courtyard, it is evident that someone had tried to stealthily enter the keep but failed. Archers on the wall are letting fly with arrows into the dark. Drake joins them for a single shot and shooting at a flitting shadow in the dark of night, manages to seriously wound a man.

CS2 - Of Priors and Barons' Daughters
Near Mosstone - Early Spring 798

Wherein the troupe evade agents of the Sheriff and make new friends._

The troupe polices the area, recovering what arrows they can find. Drystan searches the pouch carried by the messenger and discovers userer notes totalling more than 200 Crowns borrowed from many lenders but having a single recipient: Tulath Kaphin, Sheriff of Vemionshire and Constable of Mosstone.

CS1-The Message to Wayland
Hartwood - Early Spring 798

Wherein the troupe saves a lady in distress and becomes embroiled in something larger.

The trio are engaged in duties around the Garmsdale Manor when Lord Bard arrives home. He seems somewhat disturbed, but is unable or unwilling to share.
He asks that the Nephews carry a message to Wayland, place it in the hands of the Lady Mirabel duMeleken, aid her in any way she might require and then return.


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