Our intrepid heroes dragged the tied & gagged Snorg into town in hopes of finding breakfast. Smoke from a cooking fire led them to a gnome-run establishment, where the slightly manic proprietor served them an array of beverages and cooked up an interesting fish, peppers, & eggs dish. They settled on a plan, then went and found a boat. It turned out the captain, a Wayang named Ewarka, was indebted to Hudis and Athare, so they were given ample privacy to have a chat with the old codger. Snorg was hostile and self assured. It wasn’t until he was threatened with the infected blood from Bontraeger’s brother that he gave any useful answers. It was revealed that Snorg expected to be cured in the near future by some other-planar entity. He had received the poison as a gift from a friend, and his own poisoning was from an accidental spill.
Bontraeger’s brother Baern had approached Snorg about the work, but had a change of heart after learning the details of the proposed site (including the terrible conditions, the large holding spaces for children, and the Drow and Duergar methods and materials to be used). His poisoning was a test to see what the poison could do. He also told Esverra that the lies he’d spread about her were the sardonicus’ suggestion. “I was told it would bring all your wealth and power within my grasp.” From the bag in the corner, the bottled imp shouted “No, I said it would bring her and all her wealth and power within your reach,” then it giggled evilly. (RETCON) Snorg tried to bribe and threaten the party, and assured them any foul play would only result in retribution from his “men”, and that he’d find a way to return from the grave to haunt them. Nonplussed, Tyi slit his throat. As Snorg gurgled his last, the silvery runes in his flesh turned to dust and the gray/purple/black discoloration of the toxin spread across his whole body. Esverra said, “Too easy to bring him back from that,” and lopped off the head. The party then dumped his body into the sea. Hours and miles later, his head followed.
A little later, the emergency bell summoned the party above deck. There was a pirate ship closing with them on a ramming course and flying a parlay flag. The captain asked if the party had any idea what was up, but the ship was not familiar to anybody. In the face of a larger foe, Ewarka furled his sails and dropped anchor. A familiar shadow-shrouded cloaked figure on the other ship demanded Snorg. When the captain told him Snorg was not on board, Lou (or is it Lew? maybe Loo?) threatened to search the whole ship, claiming that he knew Snorg was there earlier in the day. Tyi stepped from hiding and said he could tell them where Snorg was. Then he did just that. Many of the pirates visibly relaxed when they heard about the slaver’s fate. After going below decks on his own ship for several minutes, Lew called back his boarding party and set sail to the South.
Along the trip, keen-eyed observers had spotted airships flying to the south. Closer to Weathertop, a giant ring of fire was seen on the water near the military docks, with ships sailing in one side but not out of the other. Once they made landfall, it was easy to discover that some sort of fighting had broken out in the Southern Seas, and much of the city’s naval forces were being transported there. Also, Draagus had left via gate not long after the party had that very morning, along with hundreds of troops and most of the Sable Guard. The party returned to the city proper. They were headed to the palace at the far end, but made a few stops along the way. First to check on Zellara, who was still lingering and offered to perform a reading of the cards to help them navigate the future. The cards revealed promising developments with Baern, so the next stop was the hospice. There they found Yargin had enlisted the help of a strange patchwork creature called Listhere. They were excited about their progress, but needed a mithril ring. Bontraeger had no difficulty getting one right away. The duo promise a report later in the day, and the group continued to the marketplace. Tyi had bartered for half a crate of spices on board Ewarka’s ship, and he managed to double his investment in about half an hour. The rest of the group begins to believe maybe their shirtless friend has a future as a merchant. Then, off to the palace. Unfortuantely, Cymri was tied up in some kind of council meeting, with a note on the door saying “piss off”. The group decided not to barge in. Lee’un’s assistant Rian Fredricksen instead took them to Cymri’s office, where a letter had been left for Hero. Hero is informed that the travelling peddler who may have been responsible for bringing her to Weathertop left town a few weeks ago, but regularly visits the city 3-4 times a year. Nobody was sure what to make of the discrepancy in the timeline.
Bontraeger decided to check on his brother again (Ryan had to leave early), and Athare was summoned by Hudis (Chris was out of town). The rest of the group decided it was time to see what was up in the pit. After paying the silver for a guide, they were lead down a strange stone stair running around the outside of the bottomless hole to a spidery green glyph on the wall. The guide read the markings as something evil reawakening, threatening a large area. They stepped thru into a torrential rain. A short ways off, they saw an ancient stone door that looked like it had been split by the lighting that was crashing all around, so they ducked out of the growing hail into the caverns beyond. One of the 3 doors within also gave way under the fury of the storm, and the group found themselves again in a swarm of rats. Once the vermin scattered, they proceeded deeper into the tor, where they ran into hobgoblins that had climbed down a rope thru a hole in the ceiling. The goblinoids were dispatched with haste, and further delving took them into a web-filled room where Esverra learned first hand how sticky those webs can be, just how hard Tyi can punch, and felt the burn of strength-sapping venom. A magical glare from Hero managed to light the spiders and their webs on fire. The party next discovered 4 more dead “hobs” with their throats torn out lying at the feat of two dead and dessicated hobgoblins seated in oversized thrones, dressed in knightly tabards, and surrounded by ancient and rusted lances and maces. Of course, when the party entered, the dead ones stood up and told them to bugger off. Melee ensued and the four recent corpses joined in. Tyi took perhaps the worst beating of his life, and everyone was hurt, but the restless dead were eventually put down. They found a goodly pile of gold and silver scattered in the sand of the room, a scroll with 2 copies of Limited Wish, 3 strange stone blocks that probably opened the doors in the main entry, and a bloodstained bone ring glowing with necromantic power (RETCON). Fearing any other onslaught, the bruised trio decided to return to Weathertop and rest.
Quick Note: I got tired of typing “Bontraeger’s brother”, so now he’s Baern. Also, please note the two tiny tweaks to the nights activities.