The Rise of Tiamat

On The Road

Episode 4

The party’s journey to Elturel returns through Greenest, where Governor Nighthill informs them that Leosin has left them horses to speed them on. Quietly, several of the adventurers are suspicious of Leosin’s story.

Partway between Greenest and Eltural, the party are attacked during the night by an abominable yeti. Oloster is left bleeding and unconscious from the encounter, but the group is able to chase the creature off with fire and pain.

Once arriving in Greenest, the Guardians are able to find where Leosin’s contact, Ontharr Frume, is carousing with his followers. Leosin is also at the bar with several other monks, and he gives the adventurers their promised rewards.

Findar challenges one of Ontharr’s men to an arm wrestling match, and, just before losing, opts to punch the man in the nose. Ontharr immediately intervenes and makes a deal: Findar can either let the man hit him back in the name of justice, or else he can accept a an archery challenge for a chance to avoid being hit. Findar’s arrow strikes a tankard at three hundred feet, beating the challenge, and winning the admiration of the paladin (Ontharr Frume).

He encourages the party to return that night for a purpose. Leosin tells them the same.

That night, after discussing the threat that the Cult of the Dragon poses, Leosin confesses that he is a Harper, and invites any of the party to join the secret society. Ontharr Frume likewise offers for any to join the Order of the Gauntlet. The Order, the Harpers, and the Emerald Enclave (a third society) are actively preparing and moving against the Cult of the Dragon to thwart their plans.

Several of the party accept the offer to join one of the societies, but all accept the charge to be involved in fighting against the Cult.

After being outfitted anew, the party take a river boat down to Baldur’s Gate. On the way, they are attacked by hobgoblin raiders, but dispatch them handily.

In Baldur’s Gate they await evidence of the Cult trying to smuggle the loot from their raiding through the city. When they catch a glimpse of Rezmir, they organise to act as guards for several wagons leaving at the same time as those of the cultists.

The journey from Baldur’s Gate to Waterdeep is long and dangerous: the wagons will take two months to make the journey, and travel through inhospitable, monster-infested wilderness. The first stretch, through the Fields of the Dead, has the caravan particularly cautious in terms of when and where to camp.

Seven days into the journey, Findar notes a man buried to his neck in the middle of the road up ahead. On the man’s forehead is painted the word “Oathbreaker”. Findar and Leondithas leave the caravan for a few hours to dig the man out, and then bring him along to recuperate. The man is Carlon Amoffel, and his rescuers note what appears to be a Harper tattoo on his right arm. He explains how he refused to join the banditry of his former fiancee’s family, and refused to marry her as a consequence. Findar organises for Carlon to get hold of a dagger for defence.

On the morning of the eleventh day, a pair of ettercaps and some giant spiders attack the caravan and try to make off with Leondithas’ mount. The creatures are quickly dispatched.

As the weather turns from bad to worse over several days, the caravan is relieved to find an inn available at the end of the long, hard, cold, fourteenth day on the road. However, on entering the inn, they discover that the entire place has been rented out by a judge and three nobles. These four men sneer and mock the group as they try to find a way to get a warm night, saying things like “Sleep well!” and “Have a great night!” They furthermore insist that the stables are not available as shelter either, as they have rented those as well, and it wouldn’t suit their horses to be around the members of the caravan.

Despite some threats and bluster, the caravan sleeps out in the midst of the horrid weather.

The next day, Leondithas notes that one of the cultists is trying to watch him surreptitiously. This behaviour continues throughout the journey.

On the sixteenth night, as Leondithas heads to his blankets to sleep, a poisonous asp is found within. He kills it quickly. Findar notes that the weather and area are wrong for the snake to be about, and so it must have been planted.

On the nineteenth day, Achreny Ulyeltin (their employer) suggests that Kevben ride with the second wagon and that Leondithas ride with him for the day. During the morning, one of the wagon horses becomes spooked, and the wagon careens out of control along the road. Findar gallops after the wagon, and is able to sooth the horse and slow the wagon only seconds before a tight bend with a sheer drop would have meant disaster. Investigating the horse yields a small dart in its hindquarters.

Day 21: The caravan stops at an inn for the rest day and night.

Day 22: Achreny apologises at breakfast, but indicates that the party’s services has been terminated (i.e. they have been fired). He has hired a group of adventurers in their place.

Late in the day, a group of winter wolves move in to attack, and the replacement bodyguards confess that they are actors and they will die if forced to defend the caravan against the wolves. The party are hired back with a promised 20% bonus at the end, and go out to deal with the winter wolves. Leondithas shrugs off all three winter wolf breath weapons in a single round during this fight.

Day 26: The caravan sets up camp where two beautiful sisters have set up camp for the night. The party ignore the sisters, but many other men from the caravan pay them a lot of attention. The sisters join the caravan the next day.

Day 27: A noble travelling with the caravan (and guarded by a very competent mage and knight) approaches the party about buying one of their horses. They refuse, noting that the noble has consistently been seen mistreating his own animals. Later in the day, one of the noble’s horses falls to the ground in exhaustion, and the noble sets to whipping it in anger. Findar steps in, and the knight and mage look ready to start violence. Kevben intercedes by buying the almost dead nag from the noble.

Day 28: Leondithas finally approaches the sisters that have recently joined the caravan. They seem hesitant to engage with him at all, giving halting answers and looking nervous. He leaves them alone. It begins to rain heavily.

Day 29: After the rains stop in the morning, mushrooms grow swiftly and across a wide area, halting the progress of the caravan. Findar recognises the mushrooms as largely harmless, despite how quickly they grow, and despite the apparent cry of pain every time one is destroyed. Findar and Leondithas work with several others to clear a path; some of those exposed to the mushrooms during this process break down in tears after a while, and some have nightmares for several days from the toxins released. Neither Findar nor Leondithas are affected.

Day 32: The caravan arrives in Daggerford. Oyn Evenmor, quite taken with the sisters that joined the caravan, announces he is leaving the caravan with his wagon. He and the sisters do just that.


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