After defeating the dragon, Verolax, and rescuing Gimnar Bronzehammer’s ale, the heroic trio of companions had earned themselves a rest. When they awoke the next morning the town was preparing for the Many-Partings festival, and so they decided to familiarize themselves with this place, and its people.
They resupplied at the local general store, where Merle came into possession of a rare ironwood staff. They visited upon the blacksmith, who gawked at the fine craftsmanship of Era’s new sword. They met Lady Niavara, whose overly-dramatic mannerisms made her very memorable among the three. She offered to read their fortunes that very night, of they were willing.
Era met with her contact in Keen, a bookish little gnome named Ozrifathimous Zorastigallion,-or Ozzy for short-and by proxy his curmudgeon of a brother, Krolminite. Ozzy did the best he could to answer as many of Era’s questions as he could. He detailed a means of sending her earth elemental friend back to the Elemental Plane of Earth. He identified her sword as Brightfang, one of the rare Dragon’s Bane swords forged from the shards of the ultimate weapon against dragon-kind; Dragonslayer. He mentioned that it was serendipity that she should happen upon the blade, as it seems her father had ties to The Sundered Scale; a secretive group of dragon slaying knights thought to be extinct.
They met Father Amberstone, at the Church of St. Erio, who gifted Era with some consecrated grave soil (A material needed in the ritual Ozzy detailed for her), and offered to destroy the unholy symbol of Tiamat that Lamaia had claimed from Ssassra in Dhol Kuldhir.
Merle, in his travels around Keen, was approached by Rolo Stonehelm, a local brewer who desired to use Merle’s recent fame to push his ale before the big Best In Brew competition at Many-Partings. It took 21 solid ales, but he managed to get the dwarf monk completely soused, and in a drunken haze, Merle ventured to The Rusty Saw, a dive of a tavern meant for the local sawmill workers, and gambled his night away. By evening’s end, Merle walked away 60 gold pieces richer.
Lamaia was approached by a halfling named Hobbs, who revealed himself to be the head of the local thieves guild. He offered the tiefling a position high in the guild, and offered to allow her to join him on a big score that night. Later in the evening, after sunset, she met the Hobbs by the well in the town square and followed him to a two-story home. Inside, a girl was combing her hair. That was when Hobbs told Lamaia that the comb was rare, of elven make, and comprised of solid silver. The two waited for the family to fall asleep, and scaled the wall up to the second story window. Hobbs “let” Lemaia gain them entry with a quick flock of her pry bar, and soon the two had slinked into the room. Lemaia grabbed the comb, but when she turned around, she saw that Hobbs was approaching the sleeping girl with a dagger in hand. She quickly grabbed his wrist, whispering, “I didn’t sign on for murder.”
“Murder?” Hobbs said, completely taken aback, “Who said anything about murder? I am just collecting a momento.”
With a flick of his wrist, Hobbs freed a lock of hair that he quickly stuffed into his pocket. Once the two returned to the “Guild Hall” (A little room located in back of the local cobbler’s), Lemaia discovered that the “Thieves Guild” consisted of only two members; Hobbs, and herself. What was worse was that Hobbs had never managed to steal anything before. With that new Information, Lemaia negotiated a new cut, one that saw her walking away with 60% of the comb’s worth.
The three rejoined at Lady Niavara’s for their fortune reading. Each sat while she flipped cards from a tarot deck. All seemed rather benign, until after the reading, when Niavara’s eyes rolled in back of her head, and she spoke in a voice not her own.
“The skied will grow black with smoke as the lands burn to ash. The earth will lurch and quake under the coming of the bringer of dread. So it is written, so shall it come to pass.”
And suddenly, she snapped out of it, as if nothing had come to pass. When the ohers tried to explain what had happened, the alchemist simply waved it off and bid them a good night.
The next day, Era set out to climb the Blue Shale mountain in hopes of retrieving the last material needed for her ritual; peek stone. Lamaia was approached by the town sheriff, Conrad Stoke, who insinuated pretty heavily that she may have been involved with a burglary that happened the nigh previous. She of course denied any involvement and went on her way. She then returned to silver comb to its rightful home and decided that today was a good day to be away from town. She ran to join Era on her journey.
Merle, who was recovering from a mighty powerful hangover, decided to get some air, and began a series of transitional stances and controlled breathing he learned at the monastery. Fella, the Innkeeper’s daughter asked him a few questions about it. In an attempt to impress her, he vowed to split a large rock near the stables that had been an annoying obstruction for years.
On his first attempt to sunder the stone, Merle practically broke his hand. After wounding his fist, and his pride, Merle decided to give it another shot. With all he might, he brought his mighty fist down, and split the stone in two. He looked to see if anyone had seen, but his audience had already departed.
The next day, Merle met Lemaia and Era on their way back to town from collecting the peek stone. Era had been pondering something she had overheard a few days prior. Several people had mentioned that the mayor had been conspicuously absent these past few days. With Many-Partings about to begin, the expected him to at least take part in some of the planning, but he has simply hidden himself away in his manor, turning anyone at the door away.
It was decided that Era, Merle and Lamaia would pay the mayor a visit. Once back to town, they made haste to his home. They were met at the door by a short, tired, haggard-looking man. With some quick wit they managed to talk their way in, saying they were sent by Ozzy. Lamaia excused herself to the washroom and took a look around. She soon discovered a small bedroom with a sleeping child manacled to a four-post bed that had been gouged and cut. She immediately returned to the sitting room and confronted the mayor.
Outraged by the invasion of privacy, the mayor demanded the three leave immediately, which lead to the thief drawing steel on the town’s leader. Era quickly diffused the situation, and offered the help of her and her friends.
The mayor revealed that his son, Ben, had been out playing in the woods after sunset a month prior. That was when a massive, wild dog chased the boy up a tree, nipping him in the processes. Three nights ago, the first night of the full moon, the boy transformed into a voracious half-man, half-wolf. If it had not been for a lucky strike with a silver tea platter, the mayor and his wife would surely have been dead.
The three companions put their heads together and realized it was possible to spare the boy the lifelong curse of lycanthropy. They surmised if they brewed a potion of wolfsbane and silver powder, they could stop the boy from transforming again, but they needed to apply this elixir by the end of the full moon cycle… which was that very evening. The three resolved to help the boy, and off they went to the woods, seeking what wolfsbane remained on the cusp of winter’s approach.