After arriving in Wybury, the adventurers rented rooms at the local inn and stabled their horses. Altair was picked up by some guards and taken to the drunk tank in Rosethorn Keep. There he met a blind man named Cormach. In the morning, the party ventured to Rosethorn Keep to tell their friend Rossla of the dire danger in the realm. On the road, the party met back up with Altair who had been released first thing in the morning. They reached the Keep and met with Rossla. There was much rejoicing. The adventurers told Rossla of the collapsing of the barriers between realms. Rossla also had bad tidings to give her friends. People had gone missing in Wybury. Rossla would not be able to do anything about gathering her troops with the kidnapper still on the loose. The adventurers agreed to help in the investigation.
After some sleuthing with Thorold, the adventurers determined that two of the people went missing to the west. They also met up with a ranger. They went to the crime scene in the west and found large paw prints. After intimidating some children, they learned that the third missing person was lost near the forest. The adventurers traveled there and found the campsite of the youths. Against the judgment of Thorold and the ranger they stayed the night at the forest’s edge, hoping to lure the beast back. They failed and returned to the Keep the next day.
They found the townspeople of Wybury gathering to search the countryside to the west. During the night a Lycanthrope hunter, named Guilder, had arrived. He had been following a Lycan for quite some time and it had led him to Craithweith and Wybury. Rather than joining the search party, he struck out on his own to find the beast. The adventurers joined the search party and began looking for caves, which Guilder had suggested would be an ideal lycan lair. After several hours of tedious searching, they found a cave. Inside there was a dead body. It was that of one of the missing people. Further inside the adventurers found another missing person, who turned into a werebat. The adventurers took the creature down, but not before it got several bites into Richard and several scratches into Altair. Hearing a scream from outside the cave, the adventurers ran back out to find another werebat attacking a priest of the Church of the All-Mother and Great-Father, Olean. They ran to his aid and defeated it. But again they took diseased scratches and bites. But when the priest examined them, everyone but the priest was undiseased. They hastened back to the town and took the priest to his church. He found he was unable to cure himself.
The worried party returned to the Keep for the night, but before they could make it in they heard a scream. Then with a crash, a cackling werebat flew from a window of an upper floor and off into the night. They party ran to the room and found Rossla comforting a hysterical woman named Sarah, who was the manager of the noble guests in the Keep. Guilder showed up moments later. Unable to get any answers out of Sarah, Guilder began sniffing out the culprit. The scent of the werebat went out the window. Thinking quickly, Rossla summoned her celestial steed and companion, Venya, to fly her and Guilder out into the night. Amaranth cast Light on Guilder’s shirt so that the rest of the party could find him once they left the keep. The trail went cold in the forest, crossing a river. With disappointment in their hearts, the party returned to the keep and went to bed.
Locke and Altair, however, could not sleep. Locke made inquiries with the Steward, Carthil about obtaining some fancy clothes. After that Altair and Locke both went to get baths before turning in. Locke became aware of a scuttling. A quick search revealed that one of his boots was missing. Putting on one boot and ignoring the loss of the other he began to search surrounding rooms for the thief. After brief conversations with both Rossla and Altair, he and Altair went to bed. On the morning, everyone at breakfast noticed that the eggs were very salty. So salty they were barely palatable. Investigating the oddness, they found the cook crying in the kitchen over her failure. Further investigation led Locke, Altair, and Guilder to the pantry. There they found a nook with meaningless treasures, along with Locke’s boot and a scroll of paper that had the assassination order for Richard Farrough written on it. Locke immediately put the boot on, pretending it had never been in the cache. He also pocketed the other items.
Listening, the smaller party noticed a tiny gremlin under the pantry shelves. They lunged for it and caught it. Trying to interrogate the little beast did little good. Bribing him seemed to do a little better, but it was all entirely fruitless. They tied him up and brought him out to the remainder of the party. Locke returned the scroll to Richard. Richard, Amaranth and Locke voted to take the gremlin to the guards and let them deal with the little miscreant. Unfortunately, Altair had other plans. He ran and let him free away from his persecutors. Locke was the only one fast enough to follow and found Altair after the deed was done. Locke didn’t really care in the first place about the gremlin. His boot was returned and his honor satisfied. Together they decided to go buy Altair’s new pants, which Altair had said he was going to do for several days.
Richard and Amaranth found an expensive mirror and with a Scry spell, managed to locate the little gremlin. He was on a ledge near the Keep’s exterior wall. Amaranth then cast Spider Climb on the guards who went after the gremlin. But the little thief was nimble enough to scamper away and escape their grasp. Amaranth and Richard cursed the injustice of it.
After a morning of chasing irritating rascals (the gremlin and Altair), Amaranth, Richard, and Guilder determined it was time to get back down to business. They knew they needed to find Wolfsbane to help save the priest for the terrible fate of being a Lycanthrope. Gathering some information they realized that the elven Temple was the best place to find the herb.
While Amaranth, Richard and Guilder went to the temple, Locke and Altair had arrived at the Clothier. There Altair paid for some handsome blue and gold pants and also paid to get his original orange pair repaired. Locke searched the shop/home of the clothier and found a diary. After skimming it he disappeared from the shop without a sound or a word. He went to the Temple, intending to climb onto the roof and have some fun.
Amaranth, Richard and Guilder arrived at the Temple first. Guilder did most of the talking and spoke politely and eloquently to the high priestess there. She offered some Wolfsbane, but she could not give it for free. Then Locke swung down into the center of the room, hanging by his ankle from a vine. He had managed to climb up a pillar onto the roof and then tried to make a brilliant entrance, which had failed. Gilligan, Amaranth’s familiar, chomped through the vine and Locke fell to the ground. He used almost inhuman grace to flip over and land on his feet. Having heard the predicament, he offered to pay the full cost of the Wolfsbane. The Priestess then suggested that perhaps the adventurers could do her a favor in return for the Wolfsbane.
Altair had long since finished in the clothier, and having lost track of Locke, set out for the rich part of town. After following the road to the sector, he decided simply walking was too mundane. So he took to the tops of the buildings, hopping from one to another. Going north toward the temple, he eventually reached the northern edge of the houses and took a giant leap. Seeming to defy reality, his jump landed him in the center of the oculus of the Temple. The rest of the group barely noticed his entrance and agreed to find the Moon Flower for the Priestess.
Filling in the details for Altair, the adventurers went to collect their horses. Altair visited the Mill instead, as he had no horse to collect. The adventurers went north to the highland swamp. It took several hours, but it was an uneventful trip. It was nearing dark as the swamp-mist rolled in. They could no longer see the road. However, they did see lights in the mists which appeared to indicate a path. They had been told to not follow the lights, but the Moon Flower would glow as well, so they couldn’t be sure. Being leery of the path lights, Locke searched for other lights. He found a solitary light close to the ground. Still unsure, Amaranth cast an Alter Wind spell on an arrow which was then fired into a bush near the glowing light. It revealed a flower!
With their goal in sight, the party advanced. Suddenly the ground shook and rose up! A monster appeared under the flower! It was the terrible Moonflower. It lures in its prey with the flower, then eats it. The adventurers did not flinch. They approached the creature and began their attack. After several tense minutes they defeated the creature. The fight resulted with Altair ruining his new blue and gold pants. With the Moon Flower in hand, the group returned to the road and made for town, thinking their night was over. They were wrong.
A cackling made them pause. They started again. Then cackling again. They continued trying to ignore the noise as part of their imagination, until they spotted a figure standing on the Earthworks next to the road. They realized it was the blind, pointy man Cormach. Heading over to him, they began a dialogue. He confessed to being the original werebat in a manaical manner. Realizing the need to stop this menace while they had the chance, the adventurers engaged. It was then that they were swarmed by bats. And the fight was joined. It was a magnificent battle, where the adventurers used cunning and power to defeat their dangerous foe and his bats. When they finished he lie dead on the ground. Their victory was cut short as they were reminded of the soon to be werebat man still in the town. The adventurers knew they still had to be on their way.
To Be Continued