Over the Sea and Far Away

Cautiously Seeking Relics
Plants? In the Water‽ OMG!

Having squared away the mystery of the abducted sister, and laid plans for decorating the new temple to the group's forgotten fey patron with a cut-off tree stump, the question of what to do next naturally arose.

In the course of conversation, which can only have happened over beers (because adventurers), several options were discussed and discarded.  Chief among the discarded ideas was returning to Sanctuary briefly to "delicately" extract information from the captured soldiers of the Colonial Guard. Several other ideas were tried on for size, but Myron's dreams led the way.

Greed.  Greed also led the way. There are pieces of armour contained in an other dimensional pocket (also known as the party's folding boat), which would look mighty good on several of the characters. The main problem with those pieces of armour is that they were removed from the corpse of one of the members of a fey court in messy circumstances. The concern is that the rest of his friends may be able to locate that armour and retrieve it, most likely in similarly messy circumstances. When the parties involved can, for sport, lay waste to moderatly large villages… Well, you get the picture.

So, Greed. If the temple to the Morrigue gets built, the armour in question can be freed of certain enchantements and be safe to use. But to consecrate the temple, certain relics appearing in Myron's dreams are required.  The party chose to chase relics.  Obviously.

On account of his continual dreams, and his divine connection to the Morrigue, Myron could close his eyes and point to the locations of the relics. The closest one was almost directly east of Raven's Bay, in uncharted waters closer to the middle of the lake. No one in town knew anything about the middle of the lake except that it's a bad idea to venture there because boats just "disappear."

The group uncomfortably set off in their outrigger canoe, on account of their main ship being occupied by dangerous treasure.  After about one and a half days of paddling and sailing, land was sighted. A black island rose out of the water directly ahead, and from a point near a nice harbour rose a black-glass city, from which rose a magnificient tall tower made of black glass. The extremely impressive base of another tower rose from the city, which would have dwarfed everything around had it not been shattered at some point in its history. Surrounding the island was a ring of very large lily pads, out to a distance of about 1/2 mile. There were occasional flowers, and the pads looked almost large enough to support a human.

The party stopped quickly, about 200 yards from the plants and discussed their options. These lily pads were clearly menacing and of great concern. Varis slung a rock at the closest, to no effect. Morwen threw an apple core into the midst of them, to similar effect. Unmollified, the courageous and resourceful band decided to back off a bit more and circle the lake to look for another harbour. While paddling back a bit, it was noticed that there was absolutely no observable sea-life near the island, save the plants.

A telepathic message was dispatched to the sea elf allies, asking them if they knew of this island and whether the plants were harmful. A reply returned indicating that the plants were not harmful, but that the fish which live among them most certainly are. The fish disturb the minds of elves who swim near and then eat the unfortunate victims. Avoid the island if at all possible.

Vindicated, and only slightly deterred, a circuit of the strangely circular island was decided upon, and took the rest of the day and part of the night. As night fell, there remained light, but not just from the usual sources. There were lights in among the lily pads, down in the water. Upon their return to the only harbour on the island, Morwen summoned forth a column of moonlight and played it over the eerie lights in the water.

For some time, nothing happened. The fifth light, on being touched by the moonlight, moved violently and disappeared beneath the water. Wrenaldo and Shade observed that it had been a bit larger than the rest of the lights, and that Morwen should find another like it. She did, and had similar results. The canoe, by this point was drifting among the plants.

Consulting Arnik about how quickly landfall could be made if everyone who could reach the water with a paddle worked as hard as they could, it was decided that around 10 minutes would suffice. This was conveniently around the same amount of time that Morwen thought she could maintain a lightning storm active for. An unsubtle entrance was started.

Everyone paddled as if their lives depended on it, and Morwen (who had secretly been wanting to use this spell for a while) called forth lightning on every flicker of light in the water. They arrived safely at a pair of massive black sea gates which were slightly ajar.

Inside those gates, no plants grew. The inner harbour was, by Arnik's guess, three to four hundred yards across, and was furnished with two docks made of black glass. The canoe was tied up at the closest of the two, and the party disembarked.

The dock, the walls, and everything about the city appeared to have been made from a single piece of material. The walls, when touched, seemed to pulse slightly warmly, and buzz faintly in the back of the head. The gates to the city were ajar as well, with no signs of inhabitants. Everyone walked through the gate to see the city beyond. In front of the gate, a road ran straight into a cluster of buildings, and off to the left was a road to a courtyard where the smaller of the towers rose. On the road, there were some black lumps which looked suspiciously like corpses, so our heroes decided to go in that direction.

The corpses appeared to be made of the same material as the city, and laid in the foetal position as if they'd been burned alive. Myron said a prayer for the dead over the corpses, and heard a dry chuckle in the back of his mind rather than the usual sound of raven wings. Discomfited, the group continued along the road, stopping at a corner of the wall to the inner city to observe the small tower from a distance.

There appeared to be something moving near the door to the tower. It flowed rather than walked, and seemed to be yelling in a not-quite-language and pounding on the gate of the tower. Approaching somewhat cautiously — though not sneakily — our brave party heard the shouting cease and took off running around the tower. Pursued, but pulling away, the gate eventually showed itself. The gate and wall were smooth and undamaged, with a slight depression to the right of the door. Intuiting that it was part of a mechanism to open the door, Wrenaldo laid his palm upon it.  A faint glow ringed the depression, then vanished, and the door silently swung open. A matching panel on the other side swung the door shut just as the monster came running.

Myron checked, and the artifact showed itself as being nearly directly above him. Up the stairs everyone trooped, finding odd not-quite-windows in the walls that afforded a view over the interior wall of the city, and of the devestation of the ruined tower. At the top of the second flight of stairs, there was another door, which refused to open for Myron when he tried it. Wrenaldo, of the pointy ears, opened it with ease.

Inside the room laid a scene that none, save perhaps Varis, will be able to put the right words to if they even try. There were tall structures of metal and glass, glowing from within, joined by strands of wire running every which way. In the centre of the room was a crystal tree nearly as tall as a real tree, of a species which might be distantly related to those Morwen knows.

As they entered the room, the party saw movement to the sides of the door. Metal heads swivelled, and a blue light glowed within their eye sockets.  Thankfully they did nothing except watch as everyone walked down the central aisle towards the tree.

A new being, eyes again glowing blue, stepped out from between some of the tall wire-entangled structures, and greeted the party.

Killin' Fey
a d&d response to an amber alert

Wrenaldo woke in the very early morning after everyone had returned to Raven's Bay.  He was feeling itchy and unsettled, like something was poking him in the back of his brain.  Slowly waking, he recognized the feeling as the one he gets when the Morrigon (the Faerie he has sworn his oath to) is trying to tell him something.

Calling on the power of his Oath, he was able to identify the stale lingering "smell" of fey creatures somewhere inside the pallisade of the town.  Worried about the potential contents of the house, and what the repercussions of entering unbidden would be, he woke everyone else.  The group decided to talk to the town leaders. Apparently, a family of four lives in that house, and the group should just enter.

Inspection of the house revealed a by-now-familiar coppery scent, and the expected dead bodies. Three bodies revealed themselves, the mother and father in one room and a young boy in the other.  Merrick (now going by Myron) decided to apply some of his new knowledge and summoned the father's spirit back for a chat.

The father didn't know much: he had heard a noise in the night, opened his eyes and was immediately set upon by creatures with glowing eyes.  Then he died.  He pleaded with the crew to retrieve his daughter whose body hadn't been found.  Who can argue with the spirit of a dead father? (or, really, who wants to be haunted by a vengeful spririt when you say "nah, don't feel like it".)

Declining to enter a halfling-sized tunnel reeking of strange creatures, the party made its way outside the pallisade and found the other side of the tunnel used to abduct the girl.  Footprints were quickly found by several folks who, by now, have become adept at this sort of thing. Tracking was pretty easy until the terrain slowly turns into a swamp, whereupon the little non-human prints simply vanished, as if a spell had been cast.  After some time — and frankly, a little luck — the indentation of the heel of a girl's foot was found, and proved to be enough to track the girl to a cave near enough to the ocean to hear the waves over the whine of biting insects.

The mouth of the cave was surrounded by impenetrable and injurious thorn bushes, which were used for cover as the party snuck up for a better look.  Shade, though wearing a breastplate and hauling a large sword, surprised everyone by tiptoeing so delicately that he was effectively invisible.  Myron looked quite pleased about that.

Staying wide of the cave mouth, Arnik was quite startled as six smallish creatures emerge from their hiding places just below the surface of the dirt.  Morwen had been on edge, and managed to spring a spell on them just as their heads cleared the dirt.  Sadly, her favoured vines merely slid from the creatures' arms, apparently unwilling to ensnare old friends.

One of the critters, larger and more painted than the rest, recognized magic for what it was, and rushed at Morwen and raked her across the stomach before she could retreat.  Morwen screeched in pain as she felt shards of the creature's claws embed themselves in her flesh, continuing to tear at her whenever she moved.

Flush with new knowledge, and facing five unknown but angry-looking creatures, Arnik retreated to a safe distance taking a small wound as he did so. At a safe distance, with a bit of a wild look in his eye, Arnik mutterd and pointed at the creatures.  Even he seemed surprised by the results: a streak of light followed by a roar as a large ball of fire erupts.  When the ball was gone, so were the small beings which had recently been standing there.  Wrenaldo and Shade proceeded to chivalrously turn the nasty brute menacing poor defenceless Morwen into a corpse.

Arnik, a small grin lingering on his face, crossed the glade to talk with someone and stepped right on the head of another of the creatures lying in wait under the earth.  A pitched battle ensued, during which the fighers got to show off their prowess.  Wrenaldo, full of insights from his time spent training, was a blur, eliminating three critters in his first round.  Shade weighed in, taking one out and drawing their attention, and the rest fell quickly.  Several got to (momentarily) experience flight at the hands of a well-placed thunderwave spell on Varis' part, unfortunately they didn't survive the landing.

Into the cave went they, and several more small groups of beasts fell to sword and spell. But then a bramble hedge appeared, and enemies emerged from the walls and the hedge in all directions.  Our heroes were surrounded.  Myron remembered a spell, and brought forth a circle of ravens which dealt death to all who approached.  The hedge was quickly breached with no enemies to worry about.

The sound of chanting made itself known, and our heroes quickly moved to investigate.  Myron made sure to visit all of the branching paths with his circle of ravens, causing many shrieks of pain.

At last, the main chamber was breached, just as the ravens vanished in a puff of black smoke. Bereft of their protection, our crazed heroes pressed onwards towards the sounds of frenzied chanting. The head priest, upon seeing the groups of invaders, plunged his wooden dagger into the chest of the abducted girl and turned, snarl upon his face, to face the new threat.

There, however, the priest stopped, held as he was by a spell from Morwen. Shade bravely charged into a room full of enemies, delivering a solid blow to the priest. As a reward for his bravery, a room full of painted defenders surrounded shade and started clawing at his armour.  Several found gaps, but Shade shrugged and threw them off. Wrenaldo jumped into the

Myron reached deep into his reserves of strength, and summoned forth another flock of ravens. The defenders quickly fell to the Morrigon's minions, and our party set about rescuing the presumably dead girl on the altar.

Luck had it that she wasn't quite dead, just very stabbed.  Application of healing at just the right moment as the dagger was removed kept her breathing, and she was carried from the alter to rest in Morwen's care.

On the floor of a sunken area in the cavern, near the altar, was a tangle of roots surrounding a fey portal.  After some debate, and some clairvoyance on Myron's part, all except Morwen entered the portal. As far as the eye could see, a thorny forest stretched to the horizon. Utter blackness curved up and overhead, making the place feel very alien: a quick return was decided upon.  Speculation ensued about whether this was part of the demense of the Queen of Thorns, who lies ensnared in magical traps in her fortress on the east side of Lake Ebonheart.

The girl was re-united with the community without memory of the incident, and a work party was organized to bring back the roots of the tree from then central chamber, which will help consecrate the temple to the Morrigon which Myron is building in Raven's Bay.

Moving Mobs and Mountains
Logistics 101




Guiding several hundred people through dangerous woods.

Interpersonal discussions.

How to deal with angry red caps and suprise them

Hiding 500 people is fun

Planning to steal a boat,,, with no plan but a great location.


Sorting through the Rubble and the Trouble
How to run an evac - p2

Party settles into meeting with Traven and his associates.

Makes a deal with the remaining colonial administration (they get their stuff out, leave the extra food, no harm will come to them).

Round up the people of the village, prepare to travel.

Merrin and Shade get some visits and get to make some decisions.

Departure from the town, meeting up at a mining camp about a days march east of Blawtro.



write write write

I wish we had a boat, and a crew
Guess those Asterix Books and a botched roll worked out....

Charming our way onto the boat.

Killing the guards

Removing the rowers 'leader' while we freed them.

Giving the rowers an alternative that would make them no longer slaves.

Transporting the Transported to their new home.

Going into some down t

The road to Heckfire is paved with good intentions
Did I do that ?

Early in the morning we decide to depart the gnomish village.   After some discussions, it's clear to everyone that we're eager to investigate the happenings in and around the eastern end of the lake.   There are numerous concerns about the unknown elements and the dangers brewing beneat the waves.

We do decide to try to help with the events in Blawtro, and particularly we want to help Traven with his poison issue.   We decide to send in some of our 'less well known' friends in to discuss with Traven and to try to cure his poisoning.

The situation in Blawtro is terrible and this is quickly evident as we arrive in town.   The keep has been closed by the colonial guard and the town is bloated by transported from all over the southern colonies who have fled or departed the nearby camps and mines.

The find their way to Travens bunker, escorted by a very busy Orik.   He has been trying to handle Travens affairs, but things are extremely busy and things are on the edge of blowing up in town.   There are lines of people leaving Blawtro, or at least lines of richer people leaving Blawtro.   The more modest people of Blawtro and most of the transported are stuck in town.

Morwen manages to assuage some of the disease which Traven has but they decide to hold off on removing the poison.   The poison itself is a highly addictive substance that may be more of an issue in withdrawal than it is in his system.   Traven asks the party to help keep a lid on Blawtro and he asks that we come offer what help we can.   He tells us of the flying creatures hunting in the woods, the giant wolf creatures and the trees that come alove.   Most of the colonial guard was slaughtered in the woods a few weeks back and the town is basically unprepared or defended from the dangers in the woods.

Morwen and Varris return to the party and manage to convince us to come take a look at the town.  We hike up towards town seeing manage of the refugees on the street and as we get close the thunder in the storm associated with the great hunt starts in earnest.    As we travel under a pass without trace spell we manage to get right up next to town and we see horses flying in the air with riders on their back.  The riders have huge long spears that they are harassing people with, swooping down and killing them.   It's a slaughter.

Merrick pulls out a few cold iron arrows and some cold iron daggers from his pack and he hands them out amongst the party members.   He hands some of them to everyone and then, as we're deciding if we should hit these things or not he utters the words "Well you should use your judgement" afterwhich Shade lets loose with an arrow, striking the mounted fey with a longbow shot.

The fey dives towards us on his mount and treats for us to duel him in honorable combat.   He is nearly immediately hit with a 'shrink' (reverse enlarge), an entangle and this really hurts his ability to hurt us with his charge.   Somehow we manage to keep him down and in a bloody, quick and vicious piece of combat we manage to beat this superior foe.  Heroically doing everything we can against this extremely dangerous, extremely powerful creature.  It's a great victory and then we slowly realize,,,, oh yeah,,,, all his friends are here too and we just killed their ally……….


Meetings and unexpected Excursions
Meetings & Missions

In the early days of the morning a pair of elder sea elves arrived into the village, in the negotiations that followed the elves and the leadership of Sanctuary come to an agreement on giving the elves a place to recuperate on land, provision of some basic supplies and help for them from the town.   The elves agree to pay a significant amount of silver to Sanctuary per month (DM edit: 500) and they also agree to help build out some of the in water defenses to prevent the hatchling or its minions to attack the town.

Most of the party spends the time in break helping with the town, building out the town and supporting their building, farming and defense.    After around a month we receive word and a visit from Dunwick who in an angry flurry presents an emergency letter.   The letter is a well sealed item, with the wax and the seal of Traven, the elderly fellow who we worked with for a long time in Blawtro.

We convene a meeting once everyone has returned back to the camp and we review the letter.  The letter lets us know that (DM Edit: Hanrik Kosk), the crime lord of Blawtro is apparently preparing to leave town and that he's moving all of his important materials out of Blawtro.   We get details of a specific shipment out of town and that there will be a boat leaving Port Tanner to go to Port Greyscale carrying some significant materials.

We quickly decided to move and after some very quick prep we take off by boat up towards the Port, setting in after an uneventful trip along the coast.   For the next day or so we look for appropriate places to set an ambush.  We consider ambushing along a tree line, at the waters fjord and finally, heading back up the road towards Blawtro a bit we find an ideal spot on a downhill which allows us to prepare a box ambush upon their cart.

We fell some trees to prepare rolling log traps and lay out a log across the road.  We then take up ambush locations and we wait, and we wait, and we wait for about a day and a half when finally we're told that the cart is coming up.

Loria takes up a position in the trees to the west ,  Morwen , Arnik and Merrick take up positions on either side of the road with logs ready to roll down on the convoy.  Wrenaldo and Shade take a position in front of the convoy with the plans to keep them busy once our ambush is sprung.   The combat starts with a rolled log, a silence spell on the cart and an entangle spell designed to cover up the start of the ambush.

The fight moves quickly as most of them are quickly dispatched, including the man driving the cart.   Loria keeps the huge barbarian busy kiting him with bowshots and stealth and he chases her in a blind rage.  The fight is short and bloody.   We take in the survivors as prisoners.

Merrick questions one of the prisoners, Merrick recognized him to be one of Kosks main retainers and one who was very intimate with his business.   The questioning is quick and intensive and we are informed that Kosk has been poisoning Traven for a while now, is planning on departing Blawtro very soon.  In addition Kosk is planning on burning down Traven's place on his way out and finally Kosk has owned Travens serving girl for a while and he's been poisoning him slowly for years.    Merrick drives a bargain and sadly, the two other living thugs didn't have the resources or character to remain alive and they were dispatched.  The party made a deal to get 5000 silver and some potions in return for letting him walk.

We take the cart, the chest and the other supplies towards Port Tanner.   We ditch the cart along the side of the road with the oxen, and we go into port tanner shortly to get our bribe.   We get our bribe at what could only be described as a smugglers den and we say goodbye to Kosks' retainer, him having plans to head to Greyscale, round up what remains of Kosks network and take off back to the empire.   Merrick isn't sure about hte deal but the money is great and he seems fairly convinced that this guy is mostly done with the colonies and just wants to get the hell out and start a new organization elsewhere.

We take the boat south with the chest and find our way to the gnomish village.  We approach via a river that we had never taken before and on this river we notice that the forest is starting to feel more wild.   It would seem that the barrier between the fey and the realm are very thin in these woods and several of us seem to be both at ease and nervous about this.

We make our way to the Mistfell.  But on the way we stop at the fork in the road and send for Traven to meet us at the fork.  We let him know about the dangers he's facing.  

We see that there is some magic lock on the chest and based on the we think that the gnomes might be our only chance to find a wizard with the skills and ability to unlock the check.  We are escorted into town and down into the house of a very ancient gnome, perhaps he's a bit senile but he's clearly a wizard of some skill.  He welcomes us and escorts us into a cavern.  We open up our boat, and show him the chest.   He seems intensely interested in the boat, the chest and all of our divine magic as well as anything from outside of the forest.   We are nothing if not friendly with him and in the end we bargain to have him open the chest, in return we'll share some hobgoblin drugs with him and give him the lock once it's been opened.     He opens the chest and we find a huge pile of silver inside.

We go and get extremely stoned in the parlor, his daughter , a magic user of some renown dotes on him and provides us with food and drink.  We have a very fun and enjoyable night and wake up in the morning, ready to depart town once more.

Who knows what lies in the Depths of Lake Ebonheart
Aquatic Adventures and a Whole new World


Departing the quiet isle we drop off our paid passengers up in Port Tanner and after an extremely briefly supply stop we take off, making our way south towards the town of Sanctuary.  It's smooth sailing when we eventually see a flock of birds circling in the distance, as if picking at something in the water.  We turn to investigate and we come upon a blue skinned elf body which we pull onto the boat.   We start to take off with the wind when we see some figures swimming towards the boat at an extremely quick clip.

We make good time but they are catching up and eventually we seem fairly certain that the one humanoid is being chased by the others and we make the executive decision to save the lead creature from its pursuers.   We fish an elf or as they call themselves "Ali Zor Toss" and as we start to take off again, we are beset upon by the creatures which had been in pursuit.

These are indeed the same vicious undead we saw before and as they try to get onto the ship we pummel them with various spells , cantrips and protections.   At one point one of the creatures takes a rip out of shade who manages to maintain his composure but we manage to shoot the creatures apart with magical energy and the larger creatures sinks down into the depths, allowing its prey to escape its' chase. 

With things somewhat more calm, we help the exhausted elf and Morwen speaks elven with them.  The discussion allows us to  find out why they're here.   Typically they live in the ocean but would only come to a lake like this in extreme emergency.   We try to find out who they're dealing with what those things we fought were, what they want for help.   How they can help us, what they're chasing. They express interest in speaking with some representatives in Sanctuary who might be able to provide them solace from time to time and they offer to be able to help with 'things'.   A meeting is struck for 10 days after we arrive, out on the point near the community and we agree to speak more then.

We complete out trip down south, bring the new people to town, things seem to be ok   There are numours activities which people wish to take care of when we arrive.  Merrick takes atik and Arnik up to tasslefort, and strikes a deal to gets Atik trained as a water cleric

Wrenaldo makes a deal with the raven queen at a shrine in the woods (trained)

Loria manages to hook up with some rangers in the area to learn more of their ways.

We have a meeting planned shortly after Merrick arrives back in town with the water elves where we could / should / may find out more.

Lake Ebonheart
Sailing and searching - who knew you'd find things in a D&D world********************

After an uneventful trip overland back through the tamer woods of the Southern Ebonheart we traversed a path towards our base of operations in Sanctuary.   We're mostly steering clear of the settlements of the Colony at the moment, particularly Southfort.   There seems to be a few factions there which might consider us to be undesirables.   Merrick and Morwen do make their way briefly into town to deal with Nana Ogg.   We settle in with her and trade some of the underdark drugs and herbs we obtained for money, as well as use of her training materials for Arnik.    Deals struck and done we make our way out of town, Merrick stopping by the temple on the way out to thank them for their recent political help, the way a priest of Mael would thank them of course.

We arrive as a group back in Sanctuary after being picked up by the boat.   Oh yes, for those who might not have been reading from the beginning we managed to procure a folding boat which has proven to be an extremely handy magical item.  The town is doing well and after a meeting with Odkirk, Tal and Shade amongst others who have been in the village we are much better appraised of their current situation.   They have built most of a palisade around the village, built the village and they have a number of crops planted.  The town is working hard but appears to be making a go of it.   

We stay for a few days, doing some minor things to help but the plan all along was to make our way to the islands up the lake and towards the ruin which we were told existed on an island in the Ebonheart.  Our plan is to chart out the northern islands of the lake and to explore for ruins and knowledge on those ruins.

We set and follow the shipping lanes on the west side of the lake and we make our way out to the islands.  After several days of circumnavigation we find an island that's completely devoid of any life and has a dangerous looking, ancient spire on it.   We are creeped out and decide to look for a less dangerous looking ruin to go after.   As we're driving away we're beset upon by a trader ship with balista that seems intent on boarding , being pirates or doing something we really don't want them to do.    Not wanting to cause trouble, as a group we duck over to the extremely scary island, hide our boat and ourselves in the forest until they've passed on and then we take off in our ship the other way.    We settle in for the northern island which seem much more quiet.   Oddly though, we find ourselves at a small, poorly maintained village at the southern end of a larger island that appears to be inhabited.   We sneak up to the village and make ourselves known.

We find an extremely odd village that is living at a subsitance level that appears to populated by idealist nobility and intellectuals from back in the Empire as well as a number of transported (who seem to be doing all of the work).   They are in fairly bad shape, poor repair of items, not much food but they seems resolute on making a go of it on the island.  Or at least some of them do.

We speak to them at length about the island and find out there is a nasty swamp along the western side of the island where people dont return from but beyond that the island seems to be fairly safe, well safe for being in the colonies at least.   We eventually enter into negotiations and put a tough but fair deal past them to get supplies from Port Tanner to help support the community and its on going success.

Travelling to Port Tanner is amusing as we settle upon a 300 silver profit for the venture and 2 days work.   We bring the supplies back to the village, let them pay and then, seeing that there are some people with useful skills here that could be of use to Sanctuary we open up the floor to individuals there who might be of use to come down to Sanctuary.  We want to support their community /of course/ but clearly they cant have people with negative attitudes dragging them down.  So, in order to support the community we broker transport for several of the workers and the artists to get off of the island and to somewhere ,,,,, anywhere else?  

Merrick charges an arm and a leg to two people who are annoying artists and drops them off in Port Tanner, a redneck leatherworking town.  But hey, they only paid to get transport to a town.  We then bring several transported and a few or the more useful people from the colony down to Santuary where we speak with Odkirk and Tal and come to a level of agreement that we should or can be able to encorporate them into the growing but still small town.

I don't Gnome if this is the right thing to do, but boy is it profitable!
He gave what back to who??!??! For Free?!?!?!

The party makes its' way back through the woods, along paths that we know back towards Cliffhaven and we let ourselves be known as they come into the general vacinity of town.    The gnomes soon find us and escort us down to see Grimalkin who seems both happy and a bit suprised to see us arrive.   Merrin relates to him what we learned about the valley, the effects of what we saw as the corruption and a blow by blow accounting of what we saw, found and noticed in the Valley. 

Grimalkin shares some knowledge about the Fey, the creatures called Hags and redcaps and seems to be additionally concerned with what we saw in the sky with the wild hunt.   Oh yes, before we had entered the valley, we saw what our gnomish guide referred to as 'the wild hunt' being played out in the sky, we avoided detection by use of magic but it seemed to be exceptionally worrysome to our ranger guide.

The party shows Grimalkin the set of gnomish plate armor which we found in the Hags lair and he identifies it and sighs when he sees it.  He told us that "It belonged to a gnomish Paladin named "forgetname" that went to explore the swamp.   We had feared the worst when he didn't return and he seemed troubled by this."   The plate mail was exceptionally nice and well made and we decided to return it to the gnomes,,,,,,, for free.   This act, or investment in the future as Merrick chose to convince himself bought favor and trust with the leadership of the gnomish community and we were then given a proper feast and treated with a level of trust and respect.  We traded with them while we waited to move on and managed to sell of several items which would be difficult to move in the colony.

The gnomes of Cliffhaven have excellent skills with gemcutting, woodworking and forging but they let us know that they have limited access to metals and leathers and expressed interest in trading.   They also made it very clear to us that their survival was tied to their ability to remain hidden and based on our willingness to stand by our word to Stump and our respect for their fallen Paladin they were willing or able to share some things with us.  They told us of the goblin markets but really didn't say that much else on the subject other than make a vague offer to show us where they were.

Grimalkin also let us know about several of the ruins in the area during our discussions.  He highlighted us to the ones that lie along the mountains to the south as well as what he knew about the standing stones ot the north east.   The evening ended with us well fed, rested and thinking about grandious plans to explore ruins and venture south.

When morning came the party was approached about the prospect of taking the underway to another gnomish village and providing escort to a gnome making that journey with his family.   Not having heard any of this, we were intrigued and while some of us had heard about the underground tunnels we had no idea that they existed here.   

At the appointed and agreed upon hour we met with the migrating gnome and saw him activate some form of gnomish guiding magic at a stump in the ground.  The tree base opened and we made our way into a set of underground tunnels.  The gnomish magic illuminated our path along an underground riverbank that leads between the two villages.   Travelling underground was safe and quick with a guide and the magic to help us.

As we approached the other gnomish village and a fork in the road we became aware of something lurking at the fork ahead.  We scouted what was ahead of us and the gnome nervously let us know that it looked like there were some hobgoblins camped out at the fork.  After a quick discussion it was decided that would try to approach them without hostility and the gnome called out to them in an odd language, after a start they responded and informed him to come to their camp.   Merrin and he went to their camp and saw a collection of four hobgoblins hunched around a fire.   They offered tea in welcome and distrust.

Merrin tried speaking to them in dwarven and their leader suprisedly was able to converse in that tongue.   They spoke at pretty good length and had a lengthy bargaining session.   The Hobgoblins are evidently very strong, danger loving, nearly psychotic traders who love to trade in rare and dangerous things.   Merrin was able to spark a good deal with them and purchase drugs and spices from them as well as a few minor magical items.   The gnome seemed impressed with the exchange and we continued on up to the new gnomish village where we drpped off our new friends and took rest for the day before heading back to Ebonheart Lake and the town of sanctuary to gather ourselves and our bearings.