A travelling merchant and his two bodyguards meet a freakish, giant spider on the road close to Brightwood. It is quickly dispatched, and the merchant continues to Brightwood, more than a little rattled.
The bandit hideout
- players lend a cart and driver from Governor-General and proceed on a “sightseeing tour” of ancient artefacts and local color.
- pass spider carcass, collect two legs and some venom; Habsburg gets very strange, weird magical wrongness off of it
- when they reach the temple, driver refuses to go on; will wait till nightfall.
- attempt to sneak up; spotted by guard who proceeds to attack; he is quickly captured and interrogated, giving up valuable intel. Reveals they are looking for something specific when they attack travellers and that they are led by one
- Niimaa sneaks up on the ancient temple ruins, and takes out the (rather inattentive) guard with her knife
- Niimaa sneaks into temple ruins, sees One-Eye talking to strange stone on ancient altar:
DISEMBODIED VOICE: Have you made any progress locating the necklace?
ONE-EYE: No sir. We are pursuing our task with full alacrity, howveer.
D V: Very well. Have you located your contact? You will know him when you see him.
O-E: Not yet, sir. I shall take steps to locate him shortly.
D V: Very well. It is imperative the necklace not fall into the wrong hands, Gorm. Do not let me down
- Niima returns to the others, and reports what she has seen. The characters agree to attack: von Braun and Niimaa’s dog check the rear for possible exits, while the rest advance on the front. As they near the entrance, they hear a voice calling out: “Oi! Konrad! nap-time is over! My watch starts now!”
- Habsburg and Denise quickly dispatches the bandit. The sound of his falling body alerts the rest, and the remaining bandit moves to the entrance to check what the ruckus was.
- While Habsburg prepares to roast One-Eye quite magnificently, Niimaa and Denise attack the bandit. Just as Habsburg’s spell is near completion, One-Eye shouts out the same passphrase uttered by the servant-agent in Brightwood Keep.
- Flustered, Habsburg abruptly aborts his spell, telling his companions to cease fire. They do not listen, however, and quickly dispatch the remaining bandit
- Talking stone and altar give of similar magical wrongness that giant spider did; Habsburg has heard of such magical artefacts; only knows of one set being in the Magistrates posession
- One-Eye reveals he is not a bandit, but a mercenary hired by the Inquisitor General of the Flameseekers personally. He was to pose as a bandit while looking for a necklace that last belonged to Countess Narissa, and was transported to the temple magically three weeks ago
- when shown an illustration of the necklace, Habsburg recognizes the pendant as a Soulwell, in which souls can be stored for later use
- Habsburg recalls the recently deceased Countess Narissa as being a kind, compassionate woman, who founded an orphanage on this side of the passes 40 years ago. After some scandal involving inappropriated finances of some sort, she returned to Olmen, and led a sheltered existence, trying to distance herself from these events.
- One-Eye agrees to join efforts with Habsburg and will contact him in Brightwood shortly; has accumulated a deal of loot while posing as bandits, which Habsburg is welcome to return to the city officials; disparages Kellers abilities as an administrator
- Niimaa and Denise go over the loot, stuffing their pockets with trinkets and useful items
- When they return to the city that evening, Habsburg hands the loot over to the City Watch Captain for redistribution; Governor-General Keller wishes to see Habsburg and von Braun next morning
Outro Players create children in Countess Narissa’s orphanage; attempt to foil her ritual to trap their souls by setting her and the other two cultists on fire; do not succeed in disrupting the ritual, but the orphanage is partly burned down