Episode Two – You Aren’t A Real Hero Until You Have A Quest (or Two)
Last time on our saga, the party was greeted by Officer John Blake and agreed to follow him to the jail, where they met Captain Hain Larkin. Captain Larkin explained that there have been reports of bandit attacks from villages and travelers from the west, he believes that the bandit attack was most likely related. One of the reports came from a woodsman from the Chessanardo, who believes the bandits may have been coming from an old keep near the border with Molthrune. He was not positive though, as there have also been goblins spotted at that keep. Captain Larkin requests that the group go investigate this. While he realizes they are inexperienced, he currently cannot spare the men to investigate the issue. The party agreed, and they were given 175 gold each for supplies as a prepaid reward for investigating the situation. The captain offered a 500 gold reward if they discover the true source of the bandits and put a stop to it.
The next morning the party was attempting to enjoy breakfast as the Floating Keg, when Darius encountered a strange man that was able to provide some information about the keep, and its master:
1. Valenin Ironwolf was fantastically wealthy and hid much of his loot in a secret treasure vault below the keep.
2. Kaarina Ironwolf owned a magnificent necklace of gold and pearls that disappeared with the fall of the fortress.
3. Wolves lurk in the woodlands surrounding the keep; some are particularly
4. powerful and have preternatural powers of stealth.
5. Bandits lurk in the ruins; led by a vicious she‐devil they rob and murder those using the nearby roads. Ex-soldiers and thieves make up their ranks.
6. Goblins lurk in the ruins, claiming the cellars below the place as their realm. Not as numerous as they once were, the goblins still pose a threat to travelers
7. and adventurers alike.
8. Two levels of cellars lie below the keep. The sole survivor of a previous expedition also spoke of an even deeper network of natural caverns.
9. A chapel lies below the keep; undead and other guardians may lurk within.
10. Ghosts lurk in the donjon – the pitiful remnants of those who died during the keep’s fall.
When the man was finished with his tale, he advised them to go speak with the man in the library who had been asking questions about the keep.
Traveling to the library the party met The sage Tenho Isotalo, who seemed to be both a historian, and somewhat off kilter. The party was able to convince him to share what information he had about the keep with them, to aid them in their journey. Originally named Ironwolf Keep, the abandoned fortress is now known as the Shadowed Keep or Valentin’s Folly. Valentin was a skilled warrior adventurer who built the place forty years ago. Valentin’s enemies, the goblins and orcs of the surrounding woodlands, slew him and his retainers at the culmination of a long and savage conflict. Valentin was a famous adventurer and was rumored to have hidden a great treasure in the keep somewhere. The sage requested that they look for something specific in the treasure if they are indeed going to the keep: a pair of maps
showing the location of the legendary lost dwarven hold of Hadramkath. He offers the party 500 gp to retrieve the two maps from the ruined keep.
Armed with knowledge, our brave heroes assaulted the marketplace, equipping themselves for the long road ahead. Nanfoodle especially wanted to be prepared, and raided every nook and cranny of every store he could to find the strangest odds and ends, convinced they would save the party from certain doom.
Our intrepid band has set out for the unknown, armed with shovels, bear traps, and warm blankets. Will they survive? Tune in next time to find out.