Where am I…? My eyelids, struggling to lift finally peel open, swollen and sore. My body, beaten and thrashed, refuses to obey any command, unable to lift itself… Completely useless. A sharp stabbing strikes my knee, giving enough distraction from my many pains to sit up, wrapping my hands around it, as I scream. Quickly lunging forward, I noticed a deep tearing pain in my chest, dripping down my torso. I don’t have to have sight to know these wounds that I’ve suffered are grave, but how am I still alive? I have no recollection, no sense of time, how did it all come to this?
Green light forms as my eyes gain sight, I’m outside in a forest thicker than the ocean fog at night. I sense a figure approaching, it’s a man, he emerges out from the green telling me he is here to help. I recognize his voice, it is that of a human… Thrash! One of warriors I helped infiltrate an orc lair in attempts to seize a highly sought after gem, the Eye of Basilisk. Thrash carefully mends my wounds with a makeshift medicinal concoction of leaves and spice, wrapping my knee, and stitching my chest. It gave me time to think…Oh dear god…!!
“My map! What in god’s name happened to my map!?”
Another voice bellows from behind me, it’s …Glim, I believe to be his name, the dwarf I remember from the pub. “Easy now… That body of yours has endured enough strain that it can already handle, any more of it and all attempts to heal you will go to waste.”
Garil fills in past events, unveiling to my astonishment, the fact that I had been tortured deep within the dungeon of Jericho, and after a trying escape from the prison cells, have continued north to the holy city of Aelford, in search for the eye of Basilisk, seeking answers at the temple of Pelor.
“Son, is this your map?” Glim digs out from his back what certainly is a map, but not that of my own. Another creature, Mezla Mezla, the elvin bard who’s song echoed through my skull, suggests we head to a cabin at the top of the hill. A woman, whom I don’t quite recognize, points to a horse that appears to be tied to some bush, which the dwarf attempts to free. There is an uneasiness in the air, no doubt the animals can sense it stronger than I. As Garil reaches to untie the horse from it’s tether he is instantly flung to the ground, the horse dragging him along the mud runs for it’s life. Garil loses grip not soon before he loses his horse.
Onward we march, horseless, myself being carried on a stretcher that was quickly made by Thrash. I must say it’s amazing what skills these people possess, yet time is lost through their indecisive course of action.
We came across a clear section of the dense jungle and deem it suitable to setup camp for the night. I exclaimed that whomever retrieved my remaining equipment return it to me promptly. To my surprise it was being kept by the mammoth reptilian giant. I didn’t catch his name, he keeps silent most of the time I’m not sure if he’s even awake! We all prepare for the night. The bard sharpens his sword as the dwarf builds a fire. My memory connects as I recall the elvin character, Sadron, gets up from his kneeling position, perhaps praying to his god of some sort, walks over to me and places his hand on my shoulder. I immediately regain strength, not fully healed, but enough to get up and robe myself. Perhaps conceived notions of worshipping to silly gods pays off for those who believe. We eat around the fire, I can tell the woman, who answers to the name Kirin, wears an annoyed look on her face and she remarks at our behavior as too indirect to function as a cohesive team. What team? Why did these people decide to help me? They could have left me for dead and moved along, but they didn’t. I suspect it’s because of the comradery we shared earlier in the orc’s lair, but with my map missing I don’t don’t trust anyone’s motives.
“My god man, watch out!” Mezla shouts to Thrash. A wolf moves his way over to Thrash’s knee and Thrash brushes his hand up and down the beast’s grey coat. “This animal is my companion, my dear bard. Nothing to break your strings over.” Mistrusting the creature, Garil turns his back to the fire, keeping watch, some follow by his example, except the dragon, who flippantly sleeps in the distance.
“Shh…Did you hear that?” The dwarf alerts. Another crackle and brush is heard among the trees, everyone leaps to their defense. The noise becomes so alarming it wakes up the dragon brut…Finally.
“You there!” the gnome Glim shouts. I had almost forgotten about this short fellow as he’s quite sly and easy to miss, though I do recall his initial efforts to smash drinks with my fellow sailors back at the pub, so perhaps he’s not so bad. He must rely greatly upon his inskincts.
A wounded yet manic elf emerges, incessantly shouting in pain!
“Thank the Latherion…FUCK!” He belligerently screams. The gnome seems to recognize the bastard citing an event they shared weeks prior, although the elf bares no signal of recollection in his face, he is screaming in pain and won’t shut the hell up. Kirin demands that if we know him we should help him… just who is this woman? She decides to take matters into her own hand and calm the elf to his senses. Or at least she tries. Thrash pours some nightshade into the elf’s mouth, my kind of tactic, the elf’s name is Safeir, he exclaims nothing about himself other than his confused rants about ‘sharing drinks’ and some place called ‘the Head of the Dog.’ I’m hoping that nightshade kicks in fast. He finally settles himself and promises he will explain everything he knows after he gets a good night’s rest. As Safeir falls asleep Garil clues both Mezla and I in as to his association with our present crew. After all is said and done the party rests for the night, all but the battered elf and myself.
Something is up with this creature, as I lay there restless listening to his agonizing screams, I decide to swiftly search his person for clues. A sudden shine bathes us all in moonlight that wakes the elf. His eyes burst open, burning bright like golden glass orbs, he belts out and roars,
I jump back in astonishment witnessing before my very eyes hair as black as the night growing from every inch of his body. His mouth protrudes out into the shape of a snout, his hands bulge as claws emerge from the tips of his fingers, legs as thick as tree stumps collide with the ground beneath him shaking the earth, bringing everyone to their feet. A werewolf!
Both Garil and I attack the beast, but to no avail. He’s much stronger than we anticipated. When I realized our attacks were futile I commanded the dragon beast, Bro-something to knock the werewolf out cold, leaving no critical wounds. He complies…Bitch. But even his strike proves ineffective. The gnome thinks it worthy to cast a spell that coats the opponent in glittery dust. Great thinking. I couldn’t decide whether to further my attacks or to skin the beast alive and wear it as a trophy, so I quickly moved my position to a place safer for long ranged attacks.
When all hope seemed lost the winds blew and the clouds blanketed the moon, covering the light from our campsite. Safeir reverts to his normal form and, thinking quickly, Kirin blindfolds the half-beast. She warns us of the “curse of the Lichenthrope”, a marking on ones palm that turns the person into werewolf at the sight of an unobstructed full moon against it’s will. The palm tattoo is said to have an arrow that points in a certain direction, only the marking we found on Safeir, revealed by Mezla Mezla, is not only unfixed but is spinning uncontrollably.
Kirin suggests someone who can offer help, Deacon Oren, and Thrash notes we have roughly 1 month until the next full moon.
The dragon makes another attempt to knock Safeir out and shut him up, but Safeir’s throat manages a way to blow more air. “We were getting drinks!” he screams in confusion. We constantly find ourselves having to explain to him over and over our mission and how we can help. He doesn’t seem to be aware of his previous transformation, and is bewildered. Kirin says to Safeir that if he should ever find himself separated from us, that he try and find us again. Whatever that means.
We discuss more of our plan of action when we find this man Deacon, and our future endeavors in the holy city of Aelford. We all halt and notice Kirin’s orb glowing, trouble is afoot. A loud thunderous noise echoes not far off in the forest, and a large beast appears in front of our very eyes…A troll!
We make our efforts to attack the disgusting monster to no success. Garil sustains a heavy blow as the troll rips through his shoulder. The troll reeks an overbearing odor. Mezla casts Bartic knowledge and we soon learn that trolls can be defeated in 2 ways: Fire or acid. Safeir, now conscious and ready for battle, summons a celestial owl that pummels the troll square in the nuts. Nice. That could have been the 3rd way to defeat a troll, I thought. Brotrillisk fires a javelin into the trolls eye, blinding him and finishes him off with one last fire breath.
When all was thought to be finished we were ambushed by another troll! This time a two-headed beast who’s smell stretched for miles. Our party had sustained multiple near-death attacks, but we managed to vanquish the enormous beast.
As we regain composure, we ventured onward, to the north, to find the holy city of Aelford and the man who Kirin believes can help cure our long lost friend…