4th Edition Scales of War AZ

"Sorry About the (blank). Orcs are Unpredictable."

In which our heroes stomp around town and mostly talk to people.

The day after the attack on the Blue Moon Alehouse, some of our heroes awoke bright and early and headed out to check out the town. Wilik, Drella, and Dana had some breakfast on the house at the Blue Moon Alehouse. Wilik took his dog, Sandwich, out for a walk and they noticed the Ogre from last night’s raid still lying in the street. The rest of the mess from the attack had been cleaned up, however. Dana and Drella quickly caught up, as Wilik still had the hefty bag o’ goblin heads over his shoulder, and that bag was the ticket to some bounty money.

While Harann and Varda dealt with other business around town, Dana, Drella, and Wilik decided to head to Moonstone Keep to collect their reward for the ten goblins and one ogre killed the night before. Along the way, they decided to check out the rumor that the Hall of Great Heroes had been broken into and some heirlooms removed. While traveling north through town, they came across quite a display on the Market Green: a hobgoblin in stocks was being guarded by two town guardsmen while a crowd jeered and shouted.

The group plowed through the crowd and went right up to one of the guards, whereupon Wilik demanded the right to chop off the hobgoblin’s head. One of the guards explained that the hobgoblin was being held for trial and questioning in connection with the attack on the town. While Wilik did this, Drella talked directly with the hobgoblin and was able to secure a deal: the hobgoblin would tell the group where to find the hobgoblin base if the group could find a way to set him free. He also mentioned that the band of hobgoblins was led by one named Sinruth. While all of this was going on, a wiry dwarf tried to get the attention of the group, but was rebuffed. Later, a greyhound relieved itself on one of the guards.

Unable to make any further progress on freeing the hobgoblin, the trio proceeded to the Hall of Great Heroes and the mysterious greyhound followed. Dana thought there was something strange about the dog, but she couldn’t figure out what. At the hall, they discovered some construction workers repairing one of the doors, which had been knocked off its hinges. The workers told the group that the place had been broken into last night and that the curator was missing. They let the group enter the museum, where they found several display cases broken into. Drella looked at the information cards of each of the broken cases to determine what was missing. Meanwhile, the greyhound continued to make a nuisance of itself and Wilik’s patience was at an end. He picked it up by the head and it started talking to him. When he threw it across the room, it transformed into the pesky dwarf from the hobgoblin stocks. The dwarf introduced himself as Poyin Dekstor and asked if the group knew where he could find some work. They begrudgingly told him he could come along to the Keep and see if Eoffram Troyas was still hiring. Drella and Dana made contact with the “Acting” curator, a boy of about fourteen years, and they promised to set things right.

From the Hall, our heroes and their new dwarf headed to Moonstone Keep, where they met with Councilman Eoffram Troyas. As they arrived, he was finishing up a meeting with Edgar Sommerfield, who was loudly proclaiming that his Farstriders organization had “bigger fish to fry” than hunting goblins: Hammerfast had put out a call for all able-bodied combatants to come to its aid. Orcs have apparently started mustering for another assault out of Orc Country, and the Farstriders would be answering that call and heading to the dwarven city. After he finished and turned to leave, he noticed Dana and vouched for her effectiveness to Troyas. After complimenting her bow, the boisterous cleric of Bahamut left the room.

Wilik broke the ensuing silence by tossing his bagful of goblin heads onto the meeting table, which seemed to cause an interesting response from the councilman. He seemed a bit shocked at first, but then positively gleeful. He paid the trio 130 gold pieces for their work and then opened up discussions about hunting down the hobgoblins at their base. Drella mentioned the fact that the hobgoblin prisoner in the stockade had made an offer of information in exchange for his freedom. Troyas explained that this would have to go through the Lord Warden of the town, Faren Markelhay. Lord Markelhay had decreed that the hobgoblin would be tried for his crimes and seemed to hope that the “fair” treatment of the humanoid could be used to establish peaceful relations with the surrounding humanoids. Troyas had lunch brought in while he took the idea to the Lord Warden.

After lunch, Markelhay met with the group, whereupon Drella led the conversation in the direction of staging a rescue of the hobgoblin (in order to gain his trust) and then getting the information about the hobgoblin base and this Sinruth out of him. Markelhay seemed to like the idea of trading an underling for the boss, and a deal was struck. Markelhay explained that the hobgoblins had kidnapped several other people around town: a guard captain and his son, the museum curator, and an old witch woman (who may or may not have gone willingly). After much negotiation, the Lord Warden offered 700 gold pieces for the task of bringing Sinruth to justice, dead or alive, and for rescuing the missing townsfolk. An additional 200 gold was offered for the return of the missing heirlooms.

The group made plans to stage a rescue of the hobgoblin that evening (with sympathetic guards in place to take a fall), and then headed off to investigate the witch woman’s hut. The hut showed no signs of a struggle, and it seemed like it had been occupied as recently as the day before. Wilik killed a couple of the chickens on the property and stuffed them in a bag. Dana left 4 gold pieces behind to pay for the chickens, along with a note reading “Sorry about the chickens. Orcs are unpredictable.” As the group headed back to the Blue Moon Alehouse for dinner, Drella and Dana mused that they might have to plan ahead for future Wilik behavior by printing up a stack of cards reading “Sorry about the __. Orcs are unpredictable.”

After a dinner at the Blue Moon, our heroes(?) broke the hobgoblin prisoner out of his stocks with the help of some bad acting from his guards, who each went down after barely being touched. Wilik stuffed the hobgoblin into a sack head first (causing much muttering about whether they should have included a “Sorry about the sack. Orcs are unpredictable.” card). The group escaped southward out of town with no interference. They crossed a farm field and disappeared into some woods, where they let the hobgoblin out. They fed him one of the stolen chickens and asked him about what he knew. He introduced himself as Morrik and told the group that Sinruth was trying to rebuild a new Red Hand of Doom army, but that he hadn’t received much cooperation yet. Sinruth had named his band The Red Hand of Sinruth and the hobgoblins had hoped to gain some respectability with the recent attack on the town. Also, he explained that they were currently based in the crypts of the old Rivenroar estate, in the Moon Hills to the south. Unfortunately, the undead who controlled those crypts required sacrifices in order to not kill the goblins, so some prisoners had to be taken during the attack as well.

Drella and Wilik tried to convince Morrik that the group wanted to join up with the hobgoblins in their fight against the humans, but the hobgoblin seemed to be nervous about Dana’s presence. Wilik decided the hobgoblin wasn’t going to play along and so he beheaded him and tossed his head back into the sack for later bounty collection. The group now faces the task of sorting out which of the many abandoned estates in the Moon Hills is the Rivenroar estate without a guide…

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