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Session 40 - Due Recompense

General Summary

Pursuing the escaping ogre Barlov, the party unleashed a number of spells and abilities to slow him down - Slow, Darkness, Entangle and finally Grease, whilst Al Rudrog's axe and Nyssa's Call Lightning tore through his defenses. Barlov, still spitting revenge to his last, was finished off by a spectacular dagger strike from Dirk.   As the dust settled on the battle, the party tried to figure out what they were going to do with the dead ogre and the revelation that his 'family' was coming for him. Sending out their owls to scout, the party's casters located the campfires of a band of at least a dozen ogres accompanied by a band of goblins moving southwest toward Muskratte, about a day's travel away. Realizing that a siege was impending, the party discussed various preparations for battle and notified the residents of the Manor of the oncoming threat.   They learned from Petit Jean that the ogres are members of the GoreJaw clan, a vicious, cannibalistic family that Jean himself escaped from, losing his younger sister in the process, and that the ogre they killed, Barlov, was the family's resident torturer and particularly cruel, and that Jean does not begrudge them his brutal cousin's death. He warned them to beware of the clan's vicious matriarch, Old Granny Grell, and her cunning 'sister', Agatha, who was 'like no one else'.   After a 'town meeting' in the Great Hall with the enthusiastic Duke, the anxious Bartholemew, Green Jenny, Wilfred Honeydew, Tarvul Kuurf, and the tutor Mara Lichtstehler, the party made an extensive plan to fortify the Manor with the limited resources at their disposal.   With an oil-filled trench dug behind the courtyard walls, caltrops laid at the entrances, kobolds barricading and trapping the facade and front-facing hallways, Alston and Aymon set up as snipers in the upper floors, the stable portcullis trapped with pitch and a makeshift catapult built by Alston concealed behind the courtyard wall, the party prepared to face their opponents...   ...only for a single human woman to walk out of the mist-shrouded forest at dusk and ask for parlay. When Va'Lora introduced herself to this grizzled warrior, the woman introduced herself as 'Agatha', considered an 'auntie' to the ogres, and offered that she was here to negotiate on the behalf of a number of 'aggrieved parties' who had been harmed by the Guild, and demanded "due recompense".   When Va'lora pressed innocence of any such wrongdoing and remained stony-faced at the mention of the Guild's departed members, Aggie grew impatient and revealed her true face, showing herself as "Black Aggie Ironteeth", the sister of Goodwife Kinterkraaft, and suggested Va'lora mention that name to her friends.   Quickly realizing that the game had changed and their antagonists were being led by a cruel and cunning hag. Sending more members down to try to gauge the creature's demands, they learned that Aggie wanted them to provide her with 'due recompense' for the death of Goodie; honour meaning nothing to the hag, she had brought the vengeful GoreJaw ogres and Bone Pickaz goblins to their doorstep as leashed attack dogs to back up her demands.   With Goodie dead, Aggie continued, her coven was broken and its power lessened, and that could not be abided by. The only acceptable recompense would be a replacement Sister - and Aggie could smell the workings of one of Goodie's curses within - their beloved gardener, Green Jenny, was in fact a hexblood once cursed by Goodie, doomed to slowly transform into a full-fledged Green Hag like her.   If Jenny were to come willingly and surrender herself to the coven, Aggie would call off her forces, but if she refuses, blood will be spilled. As Aggie gave them until dawn to make their decision and receded into the mist, the party relayed their tragic news to Green Jenny, who finally admitted her own sad tale; as a young girl, she made a bargain with Goodie Kinterkraaft for the heart of a young man she loved and paid a bitter price.   She would be willing to surrender herself if it meant the survival of her companions and the children, but warns that she would then become a heartless monster like Goodie and spread endless suffering through the world, making the party vow to kill her if that ever happens.   The party refused to accept losing Jenny to such a cruel fate and vowed to make a stand together and defeat the oncoming horde. With their resolve set, Jenny queried of Agatha had been alone, pointing out that a Hag Coven demands Three members, and if she was being called to replace Goodie, who is the third?
Report Date
22 Aug 2021

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