The Gobble-uns'll get you ef you don't watch out.

Session Summary

On the way out of Trammel, they had a good look around at the strange little village while Rache carved the hearts out of the four ogres' corpses.  The horrific half of the town (the slave pens, the ogre dormitory, and the sprawling manor house) seemed grafted on to what had otherwise been a quaint but slightly backward village in the middle of nowhere.  There was no sign of why Trammel's citizens had been enslaved, but it was clear that House Duchronaigh was responsible, and the ogres had been in on the arrangement.  When they found the fifth ogre hanging by its ankle from a length of heavy chain, their worst suspicions were confirmed.  Rache looked the body over briefly, cut it down, and proceeded to gouge out its heart as well, humming a quiet little tune under her breath and taking particular care in her task.

The rest of them followed Terciel as he and Shard inspected the trails in the area.  Together they were able to deduce that a few villagers had escaped: one had fled the manor house, leaving a trail into the thick woods; another two or three had left by the road.  The opposite road leading out of Trammel had only ogre footprints, but they were obscured by the signs of a scuffle ("There was a mighty duel; it ranged all over") which was doubtless part of the slave uprising.  The thickly pooled dry blood on the floor of the manor house's bedroom strongly suggested that Lord Duchronaigh was the dead eladrin that Sir
Husit described; since Terciel recognized the Mornamarya family seal on the Duchronaigh stonework, it seems likely that Duchronaigh was a Mornamarya, and that there is now one less Mornamarya in the world. Husit's makeshift graveyard was undisturbed, and the small ghostly platinum dragon hovered over the freshly-filled graves as a testament to his belief in Bahamut's justice.

The sun was up now, and the daylight made travel through the thick groves around the town less risky to their horses. Upon leaving the boundary of the enchantment, Shard marked it carefully so they might find their way back in if they ever needed to.  They took advantage of the daylight and put Trammel far behind them.  As the autumn sun warmed them, they laughed and complimented each other on the vicious defeat of the ogres, animated and cheerful about each parry and slash and explosion.  When they came to a meadow where the creek disappeared into the woods, they called a halt and rested for lunch and an early

After shaking off the siesta they headed south along the creek for a mostly uneventful day of travel.  As the sun dipped lower and lower in the sky and the clouds began to roll in, they heard a howling rise up from the woods on either side of the creek.  They urged their horses forward faster and Lenora took charge, pointing at breaks in the treeline where they should keep their eyes.  Shard spotted a log bridge well south of them, and beyond that Terciel could make out the shadows of some stone ruins.  Thea was looking closer still, and saw the barghests burst from the underbrush.

Barghests are pack animals like wolves, but they're also related to bugbears and hobgoblins.  They enjoy their status as the meanest and nastiest of the goblin family, and packs often split up to spread their power among many regional goblin tribes. To find barghests working alone in a pack was striking and unusual.  The only thing more striking was Thea, who came sailing out of her saddle with two hands full of sharpened steel.  The party charged into the jaws of the ambush, and while the fight was ferocious, there was never a moment where the outcome was in doubt.  Even when Thea fell to her knees, she kept swinging.  Terciel ended up on the far side of the river, puncturing the enemies from afar with vengeful volleys, barking out angry syllables in Elvish with each heavy draw of his bow.  When the dust settled the bargest host lay bloody and dismembered around them, steaming from everywhere Shard's blade had pierced them.  The party checked the corpses, dragged them into the woods, and saddled up to make better time.  Soon the rains came.

They rode through Coracle Landing, a godsforsaken flyspeck soaked to mud, and discovered a fairly aggressive perimeter guard unlike anything Sir Husit had described: dragonborn standing watch at both town gates (such as they were), and not a soul walking the muddy streets except for an elf watching his drake.  The Silver Drake Logging Company had doubtless employed him to seek out a favorable lumber contract in the area, and the weather had forced him to take
refuge for the night.  They rode through unmolested, but stopped on their way out of town to allay the fears of the other two dragonborn guarding the south gate.  When they commented on the variety of goblins, barghests, orcs, and ogres they'd taken care of already, he seemed content to let them travel on, but warned them to keep their eyes open… any goblins who spied them traveling on horseback in such weather at night would assume they were careless, foolish, or desperate, and would absolutely ambush them.

The goblins were true to form, bursting out haphazardly from behind a fallen tree that had been laid as an obstacle for an ambush.  The party made short work of them, fending off strange hexes that sizzled through the air and a vexing cloud that left itchy dust in their eyes despite the downpour.  They rode over the goblins and hobgoblins, laying into them with axe and flail, bow and dagger, and a dizzying array of counterspells: Darg's luminous halo, Bree's noxious nimbus of gas, and the weird vexing cloud that irritated them all.  By the end of the fight, the air was so full of strange spells interacting with each other that it was hard to tell exactly who was responsible for each one.  They rolled the corpses off into the soggy underbrush and rode around the barricade, bound south for Buckle's Landing.



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