The Crimes of Talon

Varied Investigations

After Julian and Uriel won their fight, the whole party was ushered into a small room where a nervous man named Xanathos offered them jobs as soldiers in his new army. Everyone except Julian and Uriel declined. The party then split.

Julian and Uriel then looked over the logs and found fishy details. They reported this back to Duke Malinare, though the Duke’s chamberlain seemed very interested beforehand. The Duke showed great concern, and demanded quick response from the investigators.

Julian and Uriel then investigated the Golden Sunrise, and returned to the temple and delved down under the altar. After clearing away a giant spider, they found a vehicle in a small room, and another room full of scrolls. They were able to access the scrolls, but ghostly voices told them to put the scrolls away. They did so, then returned to the mortician in hope he would help them with the ghosts. But he wanted them to deal with the orb, which reacted very unkindly to their attempts to disenchant it.

Meanwhile, the rest of the party went to a small converted farm, where they barely had enough time to case the joint before being attacked by people on horseback. After running away, the party attacked the horse-riders, and after a brief battle returned to town.

Players earned between 800 and 1,000 XP.

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Investigating The Knife's Point

The players continued to investigate To Lat. Uriel [Kelly] learned that To Lat had been an evil goddess, turned eons ago, and that Rhies had uncovered ancient scrolls proving this fact. This would devastate the current faith in To Lat, so she had hidden the scrolls in the tower, but was drawn back to them by their evil power. Uriel put the scrolls in the Feywild for safekeeping.

The players were then summoned to the mansion of Duke Malinare, who runs the city. He explained he was impressed by their service for the town, and wants them to investigate a gambling den, the Knife’s Point, about which people complained they were not getting their winnings.

The players learned the Knife’s Point was an expensive establishment, catering to more extreme games of chance. This was confirmed when they investigated. Alley James [JD] attempted a few games of chance, but lost. Zar’roc [Bobby] and Alley James then staged a fight, allowing Baray [Brandon] to finagle 1,000 gold out of it. Uriel and Julian [Gregg] approached a guard, telling him a passphrase Uriel had heard of, and were led to a special fighting ring in the basement. The fight was over a sword that excited Julian; it was a match for his own sword. They both entered the fight themselves, and handily defeated their opponents.

Meanwhile, [Sean] found the record-keeper, and intimidated her into telling him that the Knife’s Point is run by “Vain.” He also stole the establishment’s logs.

The other players then found their way to the basement, where they observed a pale man watching the fight, and an ornate metal door, from which a pair of eyes peered out.

Each player earned 750 XP.

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The Battle at the Mill

As the players hurried out of Willowhaven Cemetery, the head priest awoke and began ranting about an alchemist and poison. The players discovered that his cult had kidnapped an alchemist and forced him to create a poison that the cult would dump into the Westrush river from an old mill east of the city, thus poisoning the citizens of Talon.

The players rushed eastwards in the pre-dawn light, only to be attacked by a swarm of drakelings near the Temple of To Lat. Half the party continued east, while the rest stayed behind.

Those that continued east came to the mill. Julian kicked the door down and threw the head priest inside, calling out a challenge. Thus began a pitched battle against half a dozen cultists in the mill, then several powerful magic users in the floor above, where an alchemist crouched against the wall.

Meanwhile, the party that stayed behind discovered several scrolls in the belfry, guarded by a confused young woman. They knocked her out, then discovered an altar that lead down into a secret area below. They then left to find the rest of the party, meeting up with them in the old mill just as a spell ignited several barrels of poison, causing them to explode. At which point, the second floor began to collapse.

The players managed to get the alchemist out, then rested and headed back into the city, where they met with the priests of To Lat, and descended into the secret staircase beneath the altar.

Each player gained 750 XP. Nick and Gregg got an extra 50 XP each for bravery during the fight in the mill.

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The Cemetery and the Cult

The players bound Roc One-Eye, and left the betting pit to return him to the Watch. However, as they journeyed through The Pits, they were blocked by extremely agitated rats. Julian fired a ray of frost to bind them, then the players hurried to the surface.

They turned Roc One-Eye in to the Watch, where an impressed Sergeant Scatterwold gave them 500 gold, and asked them to investigate these rumors about Willowhaven Cemetery. The players then found a tavern, the Hooked Hand, where they ate and had a good night’s sleep.

The next morning, they talked to an old woman named Sara, who lived near Willowhaven Cemetery, who complained that for the past week she’d seen a number of cloaked figures running around the cemetery at night.

The players then followed up on rumors that the mortician had inherited a strange orb. They traveled to the mortuary, where they found the mortician’s young daughter playing with what a ghost out front. Inside, Julian asked the mortician (see image) for a tour (explaining that the players often encounter death and are in need of mortician’s services), and he nervously showed them around the place. They then got him to explain about this orb. He’d received it from an odd uncle a week ago, and every night he found his daughter in his bedroom, staring at the orb. So he’d locked it away in an iron box in the basement. He showed them the orb; as soon as the box was opened, the orb looked like it had just stopped glowing, and it made (Kevin’s character) itch and get a headache.

The players then set up a watch, with Julian and Allie James in the basement with the orb out, and the others on the ground floor. That night, the girl made her way to the basement, but Baray grabbed her and returned her to her room, where he locked the door and stayed with her. The girl seemed more sleepy than zombie-like. The orb had no obvious reaction, though Allie James laid his hands on it and realized that the orb was sending out magical tendrils and had ensnared the girl.

They then decided it was a good time to investigate the cemetery. They locked the orb back in the iron box, then took the mortician and his daughter along with them. After a brief investigation of noises at the groundskeeper’s house–where the mortician revealed that the groundskeeper’s teenaged son has been acting strangely, wandering around with rings under his eyes and uninterested in carrying on the family business–Julian noticed a cloaked figure dash between two grave stones.

Upon further investigation, the players saw that a number of cloaked figures were sneaking into a huge mausoleum to Sirrah Dassock, a miser who died years ago and left no mourners and a massive grave. (Kevin’s character) laid out a trap which knocked one of the cloaked figures unconscious. It was a young woman, wearing a small, circular pendant with two crossed horns on it, and carrying a scroll of invisibility. Baray recognized the pendant as a symbol of Orcus. Julian put on the cloak while Baray cast the invisibility spell on the rest of the party.

They then descended into the mausoleum, down a huge circular staircase. At the bottom, beyond several nooks holding chests, lay a large chamber, in the center of which stood a newly-erected altar. Around it stood about thirty cloaked figures, who proceeded to sacrifice animals on the altar.

But after only a few minutes, the chief priest stopped, put his hands in the air, and sensed the presence of intruders. He pointed at Julian and said, “A paladin! In the name of Orcus, take her!”

A fierce battle ensued. Julian clanged down her shield and stood her ground, the others spread out and attacked the cultists, and Baray floated upwards and cast a massive fireball on one corner of the room, which took out a large swath of cultists and set their ritual components on fire. After a short but pitched fight, several quick blows to the priest knocked him unconscious. The players then grabbed him (and a few chests), and ran up the circular staircase and out into the chilly night air before the fire engulfed the mausoleum.

Each player gained 750 XP. Justin and Gregg each got an extra 100 XP for good thinking and role-playing. Each player ended up with a chest.

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Roc and The Pits

The players followed up on a rumor that the groundskeeper at Willowhaven Cemetery saw something lurking around the cemetery at night. At the cemetery, the players found a small brick house with barred windows. They forced the cellar door and slipped into the basement, where they discovered freshly-dug soil and a chest full of herbs and liquids (all of which could be used as ingredients in potions involving the undead). This aroused some banging and calling out in the house above, so the players grabbed the potion ingredients and ran.

After much discussion, they decided to check out a rumor that Sergeant Scatterwold of the Watch wanted a few good men for a sting operation. They went to the Watch Tower, where he offered them 400 (then 500) gold to take down an illegal animal fighting and gambling ring in The Pits. They descended beneath the city into the sewers, and after fending off a few dire rats and a hell hound, they came upon a large room with a six foot deep pit in the center. Shortly thereafter, dozens of people streamed in, including a one-eyed Dragonborn and two bodyguards, leading a hell hound and a giant centipede on leashes. The players’ attempt to stay hidden failed, as the one-eyed Dragonborn proved too perceptive. After a vicious battle–in which the players managed to throw One-Eye into the pit–the leader lay unconscious and his followers dead.

Each player earned 600 XP.

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