Thursday, July 29, 2010

The Prologue (I)

Sul, Lharvion 15, 998 YK (Day 1).

A local hunter and repeat customer of Tam'elanath is currently in the bowyer's shop, acquiring a new string for his bow. He mentions he's heard of some troubles being experienced by Teldorthan Goldcap, a dwarf who runs the local blacksmith and armory. He, too, is a customer of Tam'elanath, primarily for his low prices (accounted for by his relatively poorly-made bows) and a business acquaintance as a result.

He discusses this briefly with Zil'dejin and Morgue, and agreeing that it is a slow day even in comparison to the normal lack of business, the three close up shop early and cross the bridge south to visit Teldorthan's shop.

When they arrive and inquire, he explains the situation: he recently sent for a cart of goods to be shipped down from the town of Winterhaven to the northwest, but the cart never arrived. He discovered that it was waylaid by a group of Kobolds occupying a long-abandoned manor along the road near Lakeside, located in a small wooded area referred to as the Cloak Wood by locals. He explains that the majority of the goods were mundane and easily expendable, but the cart also contained a rare piece of dragonhide, which he intended to craft into armor. He offers a reward for its return.

Low on funds and just a touch greedy, Zil'dejin, Morgue and Tam'elanath agree that this is an excellent opportunity to make a bit of extra coin. Armed with a very crudely drawn map given to them by Teldorthan, they  leave along the King's Road to the nearby Cloak Woods, taking a shortcut facilitated by Tam'elanath's knowledge of the surrounding natural area. They arrive at the so-called "Kobold Hall" in the early evening.

Zil'dejin recalls that the Hall was once owned by a minor lord in the area who has now been all but forgotten, and the place is now overrun by kobolds and the surrounding vegetation. The areas above ground are all but entirely ruined.

Though all three have had adventuring experience, they have been settled in Lakeside for several months (years in Tam'elanath's case), and are relatively uncertain about how to proceed. Taking the cautious approach, Tam'elanath sneaks carefully up to the door and looks into the keyhole, only to find it so riddled with dust that this is of no use. Zil'dejin, irritated by this unnecessary display of discretion, attempts to kick the door open only tro be hit by the recoil and falls to the ground. Meanwhile, Morgue attempts to scale the remains of the building, only to find the second floor completely in shambles; nothing useful remains. Finally, Zil'dejin thinks to just open the door, and the party descends into the recesses of the areas below.

They first encounter a room with a pit full of sludge, where they battle a number of kobolds. Clearing this without much difficulty, they arrive at a room apparently once used as a crypt, with caskets in the middle and very old suits of armor in niches on either side of the room. They are injured several times by these trapped suits of armor while the kobolds taunt them. When the battle ends, they push open a few coffin lids to see if anything useful remains, and Morgue finds a bag for an offering on an unidentified religious altar, holding 60 gold pieces. He steals this and takes all the money for himself.

Exhausted by this out-of-the-ordinary burst of activity, they disturbingly sleep for six hours within the newly-secured crypt.

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