Waking up before the sun brings light to the world becomes habit when you want to stay ahead of your past. Got up silently. Moved over to Torq and with a gentle touch on the shoulder he opened his eyes. Having a partner who gives you their complete trust is rare. Torq needed help when we met, but I wasn’t doing so well on my own either. Together we left the room making less noise then rats skulking away.
I truly felt like a rat slipping away again, but everything around us is telling me helping this town will be dangerous. It been a week since Gurkar told us about creating a message board. I am losing patience with the orc captain’s pace. Small towns give strangers the cold shoulder, but Nevergrim is far worse. The only people who talk to us are the few shop owner and the inn keeper. The inn keeper glare has gone from uncomfortable to die right now. I can’t blame him. Gurkar arranged for us to have free rooms at the inn, but after week with no coin from us or results for the town he got to be upset.
The dim light was creeping up while slipping out of the inn. Before we reached the message board an elf named Eron Tron stopped us. He is an alchemist looking to setup shop here. It appears the slaying of the wolves has been spreading around, but not enough that these people with talk to us. He needs the Indigo Lactarius mushroom to create healing potions. Bargaining we get a free healing potion for every mushroom we bring in and he gave us each one now for free. If we can acquire a steady supply of the mushroom it would be very good for us. New adventurers will likely show up here with all the crazy occurrence happening. He had to see the potential profit this town would be for him.
There were a few postings up considering the board had to be put up late last night. Charsi the blacksmith wants interesting items and creatures for creating extraordinary and magical objects. The cathedral basement is haunted. There a farm with failing crops. Rumor about some ancient artifact.
Quickly stop by the blacksmith shop to introduce ourselves. I don’t want my sisters doing anything dangerous and I need time to get an idea how bad things are. I can leave the very vague quest to find the artifact that doesn’t seem likely with no information. Torq and I can go to the farm since food is a major problem here. It probably just a contamination of some kind from what the post says. The crypt sounds like a group quest. It very likely the dead have risen, but the stone door should keep them at bay.
Grondo Grubaled is a male halfling who is nothing like the one we travel with. He farms the land by himself. The crops started dying a few weeks back, but recently the livestock have been turning up dead each morning. The animals had their innards turned inside out. No tracks and nothing has been eaten. According to Grondo there has been no suspicious activity during the day. We figured out how long until night fall and the travel time to reach where we felt mushroom might grow.
Exploring the deep forest we almost had to run from a what I can only call a hippogriff. Never thought I see anything like that. Lucky for us the eagle horse hybrid did not notice us before it flew away. I doubt the two of us would have survived that fight. We continued once it was clearly gone to find a lake. Skirting around the lake in the hope we might find a mushroom on the other side.
A giant spider descended on us from the tree canopy. Torq was his target leaving me time to pepper it with arrows. It changed to me after it poisoned Torq with a bite. Poison was making Torq sloppy with his blows. I was having trouble avoiding the arachnid when Rath’ss crashed out of the bushes. He was able to land a savage hit forcing the spider’s retreat into the trees above. I am glad we made a clear trail to avoid getting lost in these woods. Rath’ss made a battle we might have lost into a victory we could walk away from.
We found one mushroom after all that, but we now have seem what they look like for the next time. Torq felt ill after a spider bite and needed support on the way back to town. Once we arrived it was clear he would not be much use for the remainder of the day. Rath’ss asked where everyone was since they were all gone when he got up.
We left early grabbed a bunch of quests and left one on the board for them. He rolled his eyes when he thought I was looking the other way. We arrived at the farm with about an hour of light left. Grondo was willing to corporate with the plans Rath’ss and I formulated. He had closed the animals in the barn, but had not locked it. Any intelligent creature could just enter the barn and be smart enough to hide their trail.
Rounding up all the animals and locking them in the barn was easy. I was waiting in a dark corner of barn’s on the second floor. Rath’ss had climbed on the roof using a ladder. We secured a rope to the roof so Rath’ss could climb down without leaving the ladder up.
From the second floor I had a good view of the animals. I expected something strange or dangerous, but I thought it would be something I could kill. How do you kill something which is already dead? As I notched the arrow I knew it would not hurt the ghost, but you have to try once. The arrow passed right through my target with only a look of aggravation showing on his face.
I don’t recall how I warned Rath’ss the creature arrived, but we thought he have time to come down while we saw them approach. He used the rope to swing from the roof through the small window right by me. The ghost was floating up to us and I tried another shot just to see if there was a chance to affect it. My hope was the only reason I could see why that arrow hurt when the last did nothing.
We jumped out the window lucky to not server hurt ourselves and were chased off the property. Once we crossed of the farmland the ghost stopped and watched us. After a time he left. Rath’ss refused to go back until daylight. We found the same remains and explain to the farmer what we faced. We knew the cathedral in town was still occupied by a holy man since he posted a quest
Father Abby was very distraught we needed his help to vanquish a ghost somewhere else. Listening to the noise in the crypt get worse each day must be maddening. We are the only group and there are a lot of requests for help right now. He was very understanding considering he had the noises for a few weeks and they are getting worse as time passes. Magic was the only way to hurt a ghost. Great! I make sure the group is off doing what I think is a safe quest for them and try to be smart thinking the farm quest would be easy for two people.
Rath’ss confirmed his applied magic training never really started. He had just started to learn basic knowledge. Father Abby did say that a ghost has a reason to be there. If we could find the body before night fall and bury it properly then the spirit would be put to rest.
Grondo told us there was no where unexplored on his farm; well except a small overgrown section up against the woods. Rath’ss and I explored there keeping a watch on the sun. There was a hidden stairway inside a tree. Great! Time is running short and we now have to keep track of it without the sun while exploring a possibly large cavern with many unknown factors.
The first room gave us two exits. We choose the left door. The room had pillars creating single file crisscrossed pathways. Rath’ss spotted a trap so we tried another way to reach the exit. There were more traps, but wasting time would get us killed. Two fire beetles were in the next room. Rath’ss took the brunt of the fire while I shot from the door way. It worked.
Finding the final room in a chain of them with a large unlit brazier and three bodies we hoped were what was needed. The brazier lit with an unnatural glow as Rath’ss approached the first body. Nothing. The body furthest back had nicer armor then the others and a mace in hand. When Rath’ss approached the last body they all rose.
The sun is still up so the ghost can raise his corpse, but that’s all. They hope we can damage it enough to stop this quickly and dispose of the remains. Zombies are bad, but ghosts are worse. All three of the zombie were focused on Rath’ss while I peppered one of them. The lead zombie was smashing Rath’ss hard with the mace while the other mostly were annoyances. I was able to drop my target after a few arrows while Rath’ss drank a healing potion.
Rath’ss was able to end the other zombie by pushing it into the burning brazier and with a quick swing did server damage to the leader. A few more good shots dropped him. Rath’ss took the magical mace
While I got most of the coin. A beetles seemed perfect for what Charsi wanted. We moved quickly to avoid being down there after dark just in case.
I suggested the farmer clear out that area to make it easier to see if anything strange could be happening on his land. Maybe he could put it to good use after he got the rest of the farm in good order again. I promised to check in since the cavern entrance is on the property. Getting rid of the danger is important, but it better to check in to prevent other things from happening.