Deepest Fears Report in Tairos | World Anvil

Deepest Fears

General Summary

The first of many coming winter storms has ended and the caravan has been slowly making its way through the snow for four days now. As they slowly edge further along the southwestern trail the hope is that the bitter weather will dwindle but for now every mile is grueling.
 
Rehele has asked her scouts to range ahead about a day to make sure the path is clear and safe. With their one wagon ready the heroes surged ahead. As they were getting ready to head back early the following morning they heard a screams coming from the treeline just off the main path. The quickly followed the sounds till they stumbled upon an old man thrashing about in the snow, beset by a trio of frenzied boars.
 
The Frostmerites charged ahead to confront the animals while Caellana Merathiel tried to reach out to them with magic and calm there minds. When she touched the boar's mind all she could feel is fear. The boars hadn't eaten in days. They were obsessed with "predators" everywhere. She managed to save one of the poor creatures but the other two were killed off by her companions.
 
The man they rescued was an elderly old traveler named Hansel Tellon. He seemed deeply suspicious of the heroes but very cautiously explained to them the issue that drove him out into the wilderness. Bandits. A group of four men, former members of the Grand Order of the Lion who broke off on their own to raid uncharted villages in the borderlands. They called themselves the Lion's Claws and they've stealing food and valuables from his little hamlet of Peregrine Point. While Aelfric and Owyn Gerdasson questioned Hansel Caellana and Cordelia examined the two dead boars. They found evidence of magical substances inside their bodies. The nature of which could not be identified but they did manage to convince Owyn not to eat the potentially tainted meat. This was not easily done.
 
They briefly discuss what to do here and decide that they should go deal with these bandits so they don't become a problem for caravan. They send Beorna back to the caravan to let them know what they're doing and the rest of the power through the snow to the northwest in the direction of Hansel's little village. They decide to push through the night and not bother with a rest.
 
When they first set foot through the small clearing in the woods and into Peregrine Point the first thing they were startled by was the utter lack of activity. No lights, no recent sight of footprints in the snow. And then Tindel spotted something else. A large tree with two bodies in it, each of them bound killed. Their throats roughly slit open and their blood soaked through the snow beneath them. Hansel seemed horrified by what's happened and he immediately started toward the small tavern nearest to them. There they found the door locked and heard hushed whispers inside. Whispers from the townsfolk who seem panicked when the heroes knocked. They wailed and screamed, telling each other to ready themselves for the zombies that were about to break in. Cordelia picked the lock and opened it so Hansel could head in and explain things. When he stepped in they began shrieking and one of the villager's crossbow bolts took him in the throat. The heroes dragged him back and per Tindel's suggestion just closed the door again. They stabilized Hansel and considered what to do next. Owyn decided he would use some of his manacite to put the tavern inhabitants to sleep.
 
They helped Hansel to his feet and he explained that none of this was happening when he left. Zombies are something they're terrified of, the hoards of the undead wander the borderlands unchecked and should one find his village they'd all be killed for sure. But, there's been no evidence of even a single zombie nearby. The heroes continue discussing things when Cordelia spots some other villagers coming out of their home. She alerts Hansel who heads over to talk to them. Two are citizens and one a well armed and armored dwarf with a hammer. When Hansel approaches the others can hear the townspeople scream. One says "they got poor Hansel. Put him to rest!" Hansel is dropped again by a crossbow bolt and the dwarf caves in the man's skull with his hammer. Then the trio start moving cautiously toward the rest of the party. Grigor can hear the remaining townspeople inside the tavern getting ready to rush their backs as well. All of these civilians seem terrified, fighting desperately for their lives.
 
The heroes rushed to action. Tindel peppered the trio with arrows and Aelfric managed to down the dwarf with a final, vicious, throwing axe to his head. The two two were killed by Grior and Owyn. Caellana did her to avoid killing. The tavern door opened and a trio rushed out to attack the heroes, again, deeply afraid of them as if being forced to confront horrors. One of them, seemingly one of the Lion's Claw bandits came out of the tavern. He too seemed to see everyone as a zombie and attacked desperate. Cordelia wounded him and in his mind he believed he was bit and begged the others to burn his body so he wouldn't turn. He then launched himself at her and managed to slice her deeply with his longsword, dropping her to the snow. Caellana used her soothing powers to charm one of the tavern attackers while the third was killed. The charm seemed to break or at least temporarily neutralize the delusion she was plagued by. Everyone crowded into the tavern, tied up any survivors and locked down the small building. Cordelia began searching for anything valuable and good to drink while the others questioned the charmed woman, her name Barrita.
 
She explained that she's not sure what happened exactly. She remembers the time before Caellana's charm a bit and recalls seeing the entire town swarmed with the dead. She also remembers this strange urge to find the "necromancer" and bring him to a spot in the nearby woods and the fear will go away. The zombies will go away. She wasn't sure who the necromancer could be. The closest they have in town is an old drunk named Lutin Lapis who wanders around claiming to have been a wizard before the The Queen's Rebuke. She tells him he sort of just roams around the village begging and usually sleeps in the old stone ruin up on Peregrine Hill. They decide to investigate further. Aelfric, Owyn and Grigor head off to make as much noise as possible so Cordelia, Tindel, Caellana and Berenger can sneak toward the hill.
 
The noise drew out more citizens, a mother and two other women and four young children. All of them petrified but doing what they can to protect themselves from the zombies they see. They rush out to meet Aelfric and the rest of the distraction crew while the others sneak past. The children are subdued as best as possible but the adults are not shown much mercy.
 
Meanwhile, the others proceed toward the ruin on the hill but Tindel stops to investigate the well. He peers inside and immediately the strange fumes in the water take hold of his mind. He looks around to see his friends gone and a tide of the undead in their place. Nothing is left of rational thought. Just fear and the desire to find the "necromancer" and end this nightmare. He lashes out at the dead before him. His attacks disable Cordelia and Berenger but thankfully Caellana manages to disable him before its too late.
 
Tindel recovered quickly from the brief exposure to the fumes and thats when they all realized the water has been poisoned by some magical fear effect. The boards must have consumed it and become afflicted with the idea that predators were everywhere. And now the townspeople and bandits are suffering the effects as well. And someone is manipulating them to find the "necromancer" that is the source of the undead they're seeing. They continue up to the ruins where Cordelia calls out to the simple stone structure for anyone inside to come out.
 
Eventually, a wizened old figure floats out, and proclaims himself to be the great wizard Lapis, the Shadow Scribe. Based on everything they've heard they doubt his bluster. Except for Caellana who takes it as truth and bows. They approach him and find out he's not exactly as he appears. He has no control over the trinket that allows him to levitate, his mind is addled and paranoid, he reeks of booze. They go inside his little stone shack and see an old wizard's spell book with a strange blue stone embedded in its cover. They speak to him and realize he was a wizard once, not of any real repute or skill level (the players look at his spell book and realize he was level four at best) and that he ran out of Manacite to use spells. He's been a beggar ever since. He suspects that whomever poisoned the well was looking for him and his spell book. He thinks it was his former partners Tomax Moondall or Henreich Klamp. The trio, so he says, were powerful wizards long ago and now they're after his spell book and his Enchanter's Stone which enhances any spells of the Enchantment School.
 
Cordelia takes his levitation trinket and his ring. She comes to realize his ring makes him immune to detection via magic and might explain why whomever's been looking for him had to resort to weaponizing a bunch of civilians. Grigor pulls the blue stone out of the spell book and examines it, realizing that it's meant to be connected into something. They ask Lapis who says it was for a magical scarecrow the trio built with the last of their manacite to defend them. It was tall, strong and had four arms. It was also increasingly difficult to control so they eventually took it part and stored it within one of the old College of Magic's warehouses. The arcane wards on the building would make sure the thing could never get out.
 
They packed up the survivors and began on their way out. One of the children who survived told Aelfric that he hopes they catch the person that strung up his dad in the tree and slit his throat. He says that when his dad was fighting back against the strange, cloaked figured that came in the night that he struck the thing with his woodsmen axe and it didn't sound like his pa hit something of flesh and bone. It sounded like he struck solid wood.

Missions/Quests Completed

Potential threat to the caravan spotted and maybe dealt with?

Character(s) interacted with

Hansel Tellon- Now deceased citizen of Peregrine Point

Burrita Camlin- Bar Maid from Peregrine Point

Lutin Lapis- Powerless wizard who is hopelessly addicted to manacite now and fears that his old partners are after him


The Heroes all take a seat at a large campfire far from the bulk of the caravan. Rehele's wagon is there as is Rehele herself. She asked for you to join her tonight to talk a bit more about the events that took place in Peregrine Point. She's there, waiting patiently. With her is the head of security for the caravan, Sergei and his partner Thrace
 
"Good, thank you." Rehele says. "Please, take a seat. This is very important."
 
They notice Berenger isn't here at the moment but they take their seats anyway.
 
"So, I want to talk to you. Tonight, each and everyone one of you was ready your rights and executed by Sergei here. There's no stopping him. Literally nothing you could do. I've never seen a man as skilled as he is with a weapon so if any of you thought you had a chance you were wrong. And you'd of died. If not for me. See, I'm vouching for you this once. I told him you're all green when it comes to any kind of responsibility and the you weren't ready for the situation. You messed up and a lot of people died. The few that you managed not to kill, they don't want anything to do with this caravan. They don't appreciate your stupid, stupid offer Aelfric. Their memories are coming back and they remember you hacking their friends and family apart. Here's what's happening. One, you all are costing this caravan eight days time and resources. We're taking those people to Ackley where Ghal Pelor officials can come get them. Two, you owe me your lives! I saved you miserable idiots from Sergei's sword. I had to hear about all this from Berenger and from those survivors!
 
She looks toward the Frostmerites with scornful eyes. "Is that really what your people think is best? Maiming and killing confused farmers because they attacked you with garden tools? Do your people people truly believe that violence is the only answer when things are difficult? If that's true than you're people are mongrels! I somehow believe it's just you though.
 
Rehele stands up and starts shouting. You can see people at other camp fires taking notice now. "Who do you all think you are? What do you think we're doing? We are citizens of Ghal Pelor establishing a colony. We're not some lawless hoard doing as we please! Now, here's how it's going to be. You're going to carry yourselves like law-abiding agents of Ghal Pelor. You're going to be exemplars of the city and the colony! And if you cost us time and reputation like this again I will have you executed, do you understand! Now get out of here! If you're still here in the morning than you're mine and you understand what it means to be part of this company. Otherwise, I don't want to see you here in the morning.
Peregrin point 1
Campaign
The New Sanctuary Expedition
Protagonists
Caellana Merathiel
Cordelia Dathmor
Tindel
Owyn Gerdasson
Aelfric
Grigor
Report Date
02 May 2018
Primary Location

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