Start date: November 13, FoA 201
Torgnan, Ceasok and Bart returned to Will’s guest house after purchasing a multitude of magical objects, only to find it filled with smoke upon opening the door. An evening of shenanigans ensued, resulting in Bart suddenly becoming responsible and hiding Gawain and Warden’s large pipes to prevent further smoking. The next morning, after being curtly informed by Will that the party would have to replace the bread that was eaten, Warden and Gawain walked to the food bazaar in search of a bakery. Offered the choice of a dwarf-run bread stall or a full-fledged bakery with the smells of sweet pastries wafting from an open window, the two made the obvious choice and entered the bakery brimming with anticipation. They were greeted impersonally by a pleasantly plump halfling woman, and purchased half a dozen loaves of freshly baked bread. While Warden ran at a moderate speed back to Will’s house and managed to deliver the bread while it was still warm, Gawain remained at the bakery and purchased four blueberry pastries which, while not oven-hot, were satisfactorily warm.
The two met at the Library of Corullon, the largest library in Royce except that in the capital itself, and inquired about information regarding the northern portion of the Divide. The librarian returned with several volumes; atlases, field manuals, and an old map were all the library had to offer and, after extrapolating the location of the dragon’s lair and reading a handful of suitably terrifying descriptions of a beast in the mountains which they presume to be Kivilna’ak, the two returned to Will’s home.
While the duo was absent, Aelem, Torgnan, Ceasok and Bart teleported to Azera to collect their share of KAGE’s profits. They raked in around 5,000gp, and after collecting their funds they decided to peruse the wares of the local blacksmith. Much to their disappointment, the blacksmith’s forge was cold and the wares were cleaned out. After asking around, they learned that most of the nation’s smiths were enlisted by king Zvarahi Beldak to forge arms and armor for his war on Hrodir Volkrin, a young claimant who was exiled before he could fully inherit his father’s throne. They gathered that the peace was at a breaking point, and that Azera had a few weeks at best before becoming embroiled in the largest-scale war in its history.
With this news in mind, the group returned to Will’s house to find Gawain and Warden already back with the field manuals they had borrowed from the library. After careful deliberation which consisted mostly of arriving immediately at a decision, the party decided that they would investigate the note about the Hilt-Breaker, taking Ne’Arel’s suggestion that it referred to King Valak Hilt-Breaker of Savonia, Royce’s closest ally and a major backer of King Allister should open civil war erupt in Royce. They enlisted Will’s aid in procuring Red and Gold troops’ armor, and once they were equipped, they set off.
Quickly determining that foot travel was not an option, the party went to the local stable to purchase enough horses for their travel. The stable-master was not as lenient as the party hopes in terms of price, and in a tussle with Torgnan he was sucker punched directly into unconsciousness. The party, feeling immensely guilty (or perhaps simply attempting to cover themselves from any investigation), left the agreed-upon amount of coinage on the stable-master’s person along with a note brimming with absolute falsehood. With their new horses in tow, they set off, this time much more prepared.
Upon arriving at the border, the party was immediately questioned about their purpose despite their entirely unmasked affiliation with the Red and Gold Compact. Using a pair of forged letters stamped with the seal of King Allister, they were able to weasel their way through relatively inconspicuously.
After a total of three weeks’ travel, they arrived in Serova, the capital of Savonia. It was obvious that the city was in mourning, and the party entered the nearby tavern, The Jester’s Flask, to gather news. Upon arrival, the barkeep offered ale for 2sp and the party noticed a large, noble-looking man seated at the bar itself. After indirectly attracting his attention, Warden spoke to the man for a few moments, receiving confirmation of the death of King Valak and learning the man’s name – Maerak Tarmikos. The man flatly told Gawain to remove his Red and Gold plate, and when asked why he responded with the fact that, were Gawain indeed a Red and Gold troop, he would be Gawain’s commanding officer. Gawain grudgingly complied. The noble-looking man turned out to be the Red and Gold High Commander, and when asked about Valak’s death, he insincerely said that the king had taken his own life. When his bluff was called, he whispered to the party the words “We can’t talk here”, drained his ale and, very deliberately, walked out.
End Date: December 16, FoA 201