Session 18: To Phandalin and Beyond

Orcs Beyond Phandalin
Back in Evermist, the newly formed band of outcasts enjoyed the gratitude and hospitality of the hamlet's residents.

Baricus Karium
They thanked Ferrus for his generosity, and decided to name the brown pony with white spots Happy. Ferrus only repeated how grateful he and his family were and that he would gladly be at their service should they ever need the skills of a smith.

They restocked their provisions and prepared to head south towards Phandalin.

As they were preparing to leave Evermist, they were confronted by one of the sailor-looking men, this one alone, and looking apologetic. He introduced himself as Baricus Karium, and apologized for the behavior of his associates, explaining that they were co-workers, and that he did not share their prejudiced views. Having alienated himself from his employer by rebuking their insults, he was now unemployed and aimless. He expressed his admiration for their recent valorous deeds, and an interest in joining them. They agreed that he could accompany them to Phandalin.

Vernim Vutte Knaught
At that moment, a short armored man, carrying a war hammer and wearing the emblem of Lady Luck approached. He explained that he had just been passing by and overheard them say they were going to Phandalin. He introduced himself as Vernim Knaught, and further explained that this must be more than a coincidence, because, as luck would have it, he was also heading to Phandalin to meet with the town's priestess, Sister Garaele, at the behest of his church leaders.

Yanliz and Vernim began an esoteric debate ‎about the morality of darkness and light, until Prynhawn interjected and suggested they focus on the more practical matters at hand.

After introductions and formalities were taken care of, they all decided to head out to Phandalin together.

As they traveled, Prynhawn supplemented their rations by quick explorations of hunting and gathering. Meanwhile, Philip was able to prepare exceptional meals with whatever they had to work with.

After a few hours the group saw two figures up ahead, coming in their direction. They soon recognized them as Baricus' former associates. They seemed dejected with their heads down, and passed the group by without saying a word.

Prynhawn hailed them. "Sirs! I have a couple of questions for you." One turned briefly, and they kept walking.

Valeria decided to have a word with them, and suggested that Prynhawn and Lawrence hang back with the pony. Despite Valeria's friendly attempts, the two made it abundantly clear that they wanted nothing to do with the group of misfits and just wanted to be left alone. Taken aback, Valeria and her group obliged.

Not long after they spotted a white horse laying in the road. Coming closer they deduced that the horse had tripped in a water filled ditch, that looked to have been hidden by foliage. Several smashed kegs were found by the side of the road, and Philip immediately recognized the strong smell of moonshine whisky.

Inspecting the horse, Lawrence realized that the horse was still alive, though one of its legs was clearly broken. Valeria cast healing word, and revived the beast. Vernim then cast cure wounds on it, and they were able to get the stallion to stand on its own. They named it Dynamo, and brought it with them.

That night they made camp in the wilderness, 100 feet from the trail. After they all ate the meal Philip had quickly prepared, Valeria took first watch, and woke Prynhawn after a couple of hours. Prynhawn was nearing the end of his shift when an arrow flew into the camp from out of the darkness of the wilderness. He tried to call out when three more arrows pierced his side, forcing him to wince in pain. Lawrence was awakened by the sound, and quickly realized things were amiss. He cast light on a rock and tossed it in the direction Prynhawn had been staring out at. They could see at least six goblins firing shortbows at them from just over 60 feet away. Prynhawn tried to wake Valeria, but collapsed on from his wounds as another arrow hit him. Waking from the impact, Valeria immediately cast cure wounds on the fallen paladin.

Soon the entire group was awake. Yanliz cast fog cloud and obscured the goblins' line of sight, while the rest of the group closed in on them. Once the group was upon the goblins, Yanliz dispersed the fog, and the goblins were quickly dispatched, primarily by Philip who rolled right into their mists with a flurry of strikes from his staff and his fists. Backing him up were Prynhawn and Barricus, while Yanliz shot at them from afar with his longbow.

Philip was sure to knock the last goblin out, without killing it, and after asking it some questions, and not gaining any valuable information, the group fretted about what to do with the sharp toothed prisoner. Yanliz wanted to kill it, and everyone acknowledge that this might be the most prudent action, but most were reluctant to kill the sniveling captive. Eventually they let it run off, and the remainder of their night was uneventful.

The next day, the group was making their way on the Triboar Trail to Phandalin Road, when they saw a group of humans and a halfling congregated about 100 feet from the road. The traveling group stopped to hail them, but they were waved off. They approached the congregation, and one of the humans left his group to speak with the travelers. He told them that they had been attacked by orcs and were burying their fallen friend. Offering their condolences, the travelers continued on their way to Phandalin.

The sun was beginning to set when the rutted track emerged from a wooded hillside, and the group caught their first glimpse of Phandalin. The town seemed to consist of forty or fifty simple log buildings, some built on old fieldstone foundations. More old ruins — crumbling stone walls covered in ivy and briars — surrounded the newer houses and shops, showing how this must have been a much larger town in centuries past. Most of the newer buildings were set on the sides of the cart track, which widened into a muddy main street of sorts as it climbed toward a ruined manor house on a hillside at the east side of town.
As they approached, they saw children still playing in the town square. They heard someone shout, "Where's Ivor?" and s small girl with a broom ran up to Prynhawn and began swatting at him harmlessly with its handle. Another child tried to intervene, commanding "Stop, violence is not the answer." A third child shouted at them from the center of the square, "Come on, we have to find Ivor." As the two children ran towards the third, they heard one of them say, "Next time you be Glasstaff, and I'll rip your guts out."

In the square they saw the shrine of Lady Luck, but it appear unattended. Across the road was the Stonehill Inn. Aware of the long travel behind them, they entered the inn. They noticed the help wanted sign on the door, and once inside they could see that the establishment was bustling, and the staff struggled to keep up.

The patrons quickly made room for the band of outcasts, some looking a bit frightened. Speaking to those around them, they gathered that more and more adventurers kept coming through, the most popular, dubbed the Lost Minds of Phandelver, were known as heroes in Phandalin. Having rid the town of a terrorizing group of ruffians and other threats, they were currently out of town. They also learned that Sister Garaele was also absent, having set off to the west some days ago. When asking what adventure awaited in Phandalin, they were told about orcs from the west raiding incoming caravans, and were advised to seek out the Town Master.

As the group ate, someone motioned to them that the Town Master had just entered. The group hailed him, and he seemed a bit appalled at the sight of the band. "Well, well." he said, exhausted. "I'm Harbin. What can I do for you... valorous adventurers?"

"We have heard that you are in need." they replied. "What problems have befallen your good town?"

"Well if you're looking to be of service, there are the orcs from the west." Harbin replied. "There's a 100 gold piece reward if you can clear out their lair. Just stop by the Town Master's Hall in the morning."

The group finished their meals, ordered up some baths, and retired for the night in the inn's rooms.

After an uneventful night and an early morning meal, they headed for the Town Master's Hall, where they found Harbin waiting. After confirming the details of the missions, and getting what directions they could, they headed west towards Wyvern Tor.

The day's travel was uneventful, but as they were finishing their last meal, they saw a band of seven orcs heading for them. Yanliz began firing his bow at them as soon as they were in range, dropping two of them before they could engage. As soon as the main band was upon them, Vernim and Lawrence both caught the two in front with burning hands, leaving them scorched on the ground. The group made quick work of the next two, but the last, much bigger than the others, after suffering minor wounds from Philip and Valeria, tore into Valeria with its battle ax, leaving a huge, deadly gash in her side. Vernim cast spare the dying on her, while Barricus tried to distract it. Prynhawn sprung with his glowing horde sword, and cleaved its head clean off, eliminating the threat. Prynhawn used his lay on hands to revive Valeria, and their night was uneventful.

The next day they saw a group of ten orcs heading west and the group ran to intercept them. Yanliz picked half of them off with his bow, before they could engage, and once they had, Valeria, Barricus, Lawrence, and Philip made quick work the rest. In his eagerness, Prynhawn took a wild swing and tossed his horde sword, glowing, across the field. He just barely had time to retrieve it, when a second group of eight orcs jumped out of hiding and started throwing javelins at them. But this second band was also no match for the outcasts, and soon the field was quiet and soaked with blood.
Following the directions that had been provided by Harbin, the group made their way to Kendall Keep, which was the closest establishment to Wyvern Tor. Even from the road, the Keep was an impressive sight; a mighty castle perched on a flat-topped hill, with a path climbing steeply up beneath frowning guard towers until it reached the main gate. Crenelated battlements lined the walls, offering plenty of cover for archers to attack any foe coming up the exposed path. As they drew near, a clanging as of a great gong went up from one of the towers that overlooked the path-clearly.

They continued on their way, they followed the curve of the path around to the side, until they came to the great gate—a drawbridge flanked by thirty-foot-high watchtowers. As they approached the guard on one of the towers hailed them. “Halt! Who goes there? Friend or foe?”

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