Zelt Capital – Background
A series of raids have occurred along the coasts of the Zeltarian capital, leading to a shutdown in trade between Zelt’s capital city and many of its coastal settlements. In an effort to secure the roads to one town in particular, Tikva, the traders union has called in the aid of local mercenaries.
The group assigned to protect a particular trader en-route to Tikva is comprised of a rather strange blend of races. The half-orc Beel and his elephant mount Bella have offered their services in guarding the traveler. Though a kind hearted traveler that has gained much respect with the guild and the order of the shield Beel is generally regarded with suspicion and cruelty by those not familiar with him. As a result a sense of prejudice has formed within the half-orc, and he has been known to burst into rants about “Oh, sure, because I’m a half-orc I couldn’t possibly understand X”. Though the prejudice held against him is strong, if Beel didn’t drink as much ale as he tends to perhaps the prejudice wouldn’t be so stringently applied. The party is also made up of the elven druid and his “sister” hailing from lands unknown to the party. The exact motives of the pair remain more or less a mystery to the rest of the party, although the “sister” seems quite infatuated with anything that glitters in the light and isn’t nailed down. Final the party is rounded off by an elven mage of the Wizards Union. As an acolyte setting out as someone new to magic the magic wielder hopes to hone his skills by guarding the small caravan, enjoying the prospect of a handsome sum of gold once the quest is completed.
En-route to Tikva
While traveling to Tikva some less then amicable conversation is struck up between the numerous party members, in particular between Beel and the druid. Both the mage and the young “elf” more or less kept themselves removed from the exchange. This heated discussion eventually halted as goblin’s attempted to ambush the caravan. The party managed to come out on top, although the elven child fell unconscious quickly within the fray of battle.
Deciding it best to rest up after the battle the group setup camp for the night. At day break the caravan set out once more. As the group drew nearer to Tikva they came across a pack of rabid dogs that had been scouring the woodlands. The group was ambushed by the beasts but managed to survive. No serious harm transpired, except for Beel’s elephant Bella suffering from a rabid dog’s bite. The druid assured the orc that he sensed no infections in the elephants physiology but Beel remained unconvinced, determined to attempt to find someone for a second opinion. The druid found it strange that a group of rabid animals would suddenly attack seemingly without cause, growing increasingly suspicious of the recent raids that have been occurring around the coast.
Tikva, a Town Lacking Hope
Eventually the party arrived at Tikva, finding the town less then receptive to them. The lights of the town were dowsed at the sound of travelers entering the territory, most of the meager town’s houses having their windows latched shut and their doors locked. The town had fallen into disarray, sizable amounts of damage, no doubt caused by raids, marring what otherwise might have been a rather pleasant establishment.
The party was payed for upholding their end of the job as the trader began heading from house to house calling out the names of the occupants. Evidently the trader was a regular at town for soon people had opened up, allowing him into their homes with the wares he had to peddle.
It was at this point that Beel’s Half-Orc senses began tingling, him catching a certain elven child with her hands in his gold pouch. Growling the Half-Orc set the young one down, gently chewing her out before the party turned its attention to the tavern. The establishment was, like the rest of the town, rather rundown. Surprisingly the buildings locks were rather powerful, seeming to be extremely well crafted considering the difficulty picking them presented. In the midst of the elven child’s attempt at picking the doors lock an elderly man slammed the door open, sending the juvenile elf sailing into the sky before landing atop Bella.
The tavern keeper was rather jumpy, but after stating their business and requesting rooms for the night the tavern keeper obliged, setting the group up with several separate rooms. The half-orc, looking for a second opinion about his elephant was informed by the tavern owner that a traveling ranger was currently staying within his inn and might be able to help him. Unfortunately upon Beel meeting the ranger the tracker mistook him for a raiding orc, drawing his bow from the side-table. After a tense moment of explanation the ranger begrudgingly set down his weapon, explaining that in this town one couldn’t be too careful. Rabid animals and goblin raiders had been pillaging from the locals for some time, some of the town’s local stock had been infected with rabies and he’d been spending most of his days in town tending too them. As a result the human was a touch jumpy, “you can never be too careful in a place like this.” the human muttered in disgust. In a twist of fate though the druid had become familiar with rabies in local animal life’s response to rabies he was too unfamiliar with the physiology of an elephant to give a diagnosis, resulting in a prompt departure on the part of Beel.
Eventually the tavern keeper suggests the party visit the mayor’s estate if they wanted to try and make a fast buck while also helping resolve the towns party. The party agreed and set out to the mayor’s estate. Within the confines of his chambers the mayor confessed to how dire the situation intact was, two patrols of town watchman having been dispatched a week ago to deal with the problem with no contact. The mayor hires the party at a promised sum of 2000 gp each if they will aid in the capture and elimination of the goblin raiding threat in addition to discovering the fate of the town watch patrols sent out to deal with the threat. The party agrees, although both the druid and his sister are not pleased with the agreed upon sum.
Uncovering the Root of The Problem
Outside An Ominous Cave
The party spent three days gathering information from the townspeople and tracking goblin movements throughout the woods until they had established an idea of where the base of operations for the group was. After leaving their wizard companion behind to meditate the group set out to vanquish the foes. The information the group had gathered seemed correct, soon they stood on the outskirts of a cave guarded by a patrol of goblins. The battle proved difficult, ultimately the druid’s trusty wolf companion tieing with the half-orc for most kills. Amongst the belongings of the slain goblins several town watch insignias were found coupled with a special scimitar also bearing the town watches sign which Beel took. Evidently the goblins had recently killed off the last of the watch and judging by the fires and crude culinary devices had begun frying the bodies.
The entryway into the deeper parts of the cavern was rather slender and dark. Eventually numerous light spells were initiated, just in time to reveal a horrific sight. Rat swarms poured out of grates beneath the parties feats, distracting the three party members and leading to numerous difficulties. Eventually the problem was solved by fast thinking on the druids part. After summoning grease about Beel’s body he launched a fireball, causing a cataclysmic blast of fire engulfing the numerous rats that had been swarming around Beel. The half-orc was less then pleased with this turn of events and Beel ended up offering to create a new bridal for Bella in exchange for the Half-Orc’s trust.
At the end of the cavern a strange door was seen with numerous strong magical properties swirling about it. The auras were so strong in fact that they caused the elven child accompanying the party to be caught aghast, feinting for a minute before recovering. The party decides to head back to town and wait for their spell caster to be ready for battle before continuing on their quests.