As the Nerull cultists realized that the heroes had slain their lich leader Yuro, a tremor of fear seemed to wash through the band, and they started with withdraw. Disgusted with their cowardice, Isegard leveled his blade at Arthur again and warned that their business was not over, a challenge that Arthur gladly accepted. The cowardly lot then slammed the door to the temple shut and fled.
After taking some time to lick their wounds, regain some energy and thoroughly loot the temple and library, the team returned to Stromguard and received their promised payment from the village headman Longtread. The townspeople also came out in large numbers to thank the heroes for their courage. The party then returned to Fallkeep, sold off their loot and paid the Black Marches Brigade their agreed-upon share; Arthur also personally thanked the mercenaries for their valiant service and sacrifices, which impressed them greatly. At one point during the selling spree, Arthur had opened negotiations with a merchant in the market district when a tough-looking armored dwarf accompanied by a grinning tiefling entered the shop bearing an enormous haul, and Arthur recognized them as members of the Company of Adventurers, a rival organization in town. Some snide remarks were exchanged as Arthur was forced to take his goods down the street to another dealer, after the newcomers cleaned out the merchant’s available funds. When the party later presented their 10% payment to Jarrett Barclay at the company office, they were introduced to Nakar the Unseen, a friendly, cocky halfling wizard who had just recently signed on with the company, and told that they had another job to handle.
Following a week of resting, recuperating and carousing (during which Fiona also imbued many of the party members’ gear with mana for later use), the group reassembled at headquarters and were informed that Lord Ravenguard was very displeased at Liana’s theft of his expensive liquor, and that as compensation the nobleman demanded that the company assist his cousin Cornelius with a dangerous acquisition (at a discounted rate). Heading over to the office of what appeared to be an up-and-coming enchanters’ guild, the wizard Cornelius and his assistant David outlined the details – the party, with David in tow, would take passage on a ship named The Hag’s Bounty to Traynor’s Island, a remote patch of beach and mountain jutting out of the ocean, about a week’s travel from Fallkeep and known to be a haven for pirate activity. Apparently the island was also last known resting place of a rare magical artifact, a 2’ tall stone statue that could be a great boon to the guild in their enchantment efforts. In addition to the modest payment offered, the guild master also promised to provide a free minor enchantment for each of the heroes as compensation upon completion of the job. While Arthur inspected David’s kit and several of the party members set out to look over the ship that had been commissioned, Nakar conducted some research on the island but found few useful details in the mages’ archives.
The team set sail on a clear, balmy morning. The captain Varska, his Kesha first mate Strom and the crew seemed a capable, seasoned lot. One the third day of travel, however, the ship seemed to flag under its sails. Peering over the gunwale, the team was surprised at the sight of thick rubbery tentacles reaching up out of the water – an enormous kraken had seized the boat in its grasp! While the crew members grabbed bows and axes, Arthur, Liana and Strom hacked away at the tentacles nearest them, Seye cast Wither and Paralyze Limb spells to neutralize another, Fiona cast Flaming Armor on Konshu before the samurai rushed into the melee to assist a crewman, Zardrae slid down the sail from the crow’s nest and began running for the stern of the Hag, and Nakar cast Great Haste and then Hawk Vision on himself before lancing out a series of scorching Sunbolts at the tentacles. As the terrible head of the kraken emerged from the water, Zardrae tossed up his teleportation dagger and proceeded to blind the beast with a daring and acrobatic set of stabs to the eyes, avoiding a snap of its horrible maw in the process. Nakar cast Flight on Liana and the swashbuckler joined Zardrae in melee, ultimately thrusting her sword deep into the kraken’s brain to slay it (inflicting 96 points of damage on a critical hit!).
As the kraken’s body reeled over, the crew quickly lashed ropes to its corpse before it could drift away. Konshu and Nakar cast a series of Seek spells and detected steel, gold and magic radiating from the monster’s belly. Donning a set of Created Object goggles from Konshu, Nakar shed most his clothes and climbed inside a foul-smelling orifice, ultimately recovering several half-decomposed bodies bearing corroded armor, weapons, coins, jewels and a powerstone, the last of which the halfling pocketed for himself. After the loot was brought aboard and Nakar was thoroughly keelhauled to wash away the pungent black ichor, the tastiest bits of the kraken were cut away and cleaned for a series of calamari feasts.
The session closed several days later as the crew spied the high mountain peak of Traynor’s Island off in the distance.
+4 cp for defeating the Nerull cult; +3 cp for the kraken; MVP for +1 cp was Nakar for monster spelunking and some handy spells – close close runner up was Liana for her absolutely brutal killing strike on the monster. Great having John take the helm, fun session! I’m super excited for Traynor’s Island!