This session happened June 27, 2009, and is the first session in the Forgotten Roots adventure.
- Ranger-Sergeant Clementine “Clem” Rollins (Ranger-Paladin)
- Ranger Owen Sands (Rogue)
- Ranger Oralon Skycaller (Sorcerer)
- Ranger Sareah (Cleric)
Having put an end to the gnoll and ghast threat to the Moon Mountain Ruins, Ranger Team Rollins headed southwest to New Crosswalshire for resupply. With a month to complete their resupply and travel only requiring two weeks to get to New Crosswalshire and then back to Three Circles Fort, Ranger-Sergeant Clem Rollins could see her team had been unofficially given two weeks leave. She and her team planned to make the most of it.
Arriving from the east, the rangers had a short conversation with the County Guardsmen manning the Eastbridge Gate. The rangers were given directions to Crosswalshire Castle so they could report in and were advised that the Never-Empty Flagon Inn was a good place for cheap drinks and lots of it.
The rangers crossed the Eastbridge, over the Green River, and entered New Crosswalshire proper. They turned right at the main market square and walked north up Castle Road. They were in no danger of getting lost as Crosswalshire Castle dominated the northern end of the city.
At the gate to the castle, they chatted a bit further with the Guardsmen there to find out where they had to go to report in. The Sergeant on duty very awkwardly flirted with Clem and Sareah, but Clem did offer to meet him for drinks at the Never-Empty Flagon Inn. She just neglected to say when.
In the castle the team reported to the Day Duty Officer, Lieutenant Tolenka the Greater. Clem discussed the city and what rules and regulations the rangers needed to observe. The rangers were warned that the Never-Empty Flagon Inn was a Guardsmen bar and it tended to be rowdy. Most rangers that came in from Fort Sparrowmouth (nearby to the northwest) tended to spend time at the Worn Talisman Inn, a quieter locale.
After arranging quarters for the team in the castle (there were plenty), the team made its way to the Worn Talisman Inn to see if there were any other rangers in the city. They noticed that the Workers Quarter (where the Worn Talisman is located) has unpaved streets and wooden planking for sidewalks as opposed to the Trade Quarter where most of the streets were paved.
At the Worn Talisman Inn, the team found people hungry for news and willing to pay in drink for a good story. Clem kept most of the team in drinks and food for lunch by retelling stories of defending the Moon Mountain Ruins and exploring the Ghoul Caves. While she was doing this, Sareah slipped away to confer with the only other ranger in the common room. He turned out to be from Fort Sparrowmouth and they talked shop for a while. As a result of this, he stated he would be heading back to Fort Sparrowsmouth sooner than he had planned to get word that the gnolls were up to things on the Naze Valley side of the border.
About mid-afternoon the team was finally able to leave the Worn Talisman Inn and start tracking down better equipment than what they could get from the Guard Armory. They traded with Vassi the Black (a blacksmith who also handled armor and some weapons) and Nerian the Arrowsmith (a highly skilled bowyer and fletcher). After getting equipment upgrades and putting in requests for the two smiths to keep an eye out for some specialty gear (read: magic weapons), the team decided to find a sage to sell off the loot from the Ghoul Caves.
The team was eventually directed to Majid of the Three Rings, a sage from the far south, specializing in gnolls. Clem brought out the moonstone figure of Kilwa Masoko the rangers had taken off the gnolls after the catapult fight (see Little Hungers, Part 2). This was enough to get a meeting with Majid, but he was only slightly interested. However, as Clem brought out material from the ghoul caves, in particular a game set the ghast cleric had, Majid became very interested. So interested that he bought everything the rangers had and had dinner cooked for them all so they would stay longer while he asked them questions. Clem and Majid spent several hours sharing gnoll lore between the two of them while the rest enjoyed the meal and the drink.
Eventually Sareah pointed out how late it was and that they really needed to be going. Clem and Majid both realized that it was near midnight now and agreed to wrap up their conversation. An hour later, the rangers were finally able to leave. The rangers made it back to their bunks in Crosswalshire Castle and went to sleep.
Just before dawn, Clem was awakened by a summons from the Night Duty Officer. Something dangerous had been discovered in the sub-sub-basement of the Never-Empty Flagon Inn. Five Guardsmen had gone down to find out what was going on and only one managed to return – mostly sober and seriously wounded.
The Guardsman reported that the lights had gone out and webs had appeared and they fought against an unseen foe or foes. He had been near the stairs and fled to get reinforcements. Since then the County Guard had emptied the building and blocked off the streets. Then the rangers were sent for.
Clem gathered the team and they entered the basements of the Never-Empty Flagon Inn. As they made their way down, they were able to determine that the storage inventory was short – something had been stealing goods, notably food items, particularly meat. In the sub-sub-basement they discovered what – Derro!
In a short fight that ended when the crates in the rooms were lit on fire by the rangers, most of the derro were killed. One managed to escape by pushing past a companion (and pushing him into the fire) and slipping through a secret door that was no longer secret. After putting out the fire, the rangers gave pursuit.
Behind the secret door was a very old passage was that had been recently cleared. The rangers cautiously made their way around a blockage and found an intersection whose floor had fallen into a sinkhole. There was a gap between the end of the passage the rangers entered and the passage to the left. After some whispered planning, Sareah used her divine-granted ability to teleport to get across the gap, where the rest planned to throw a rope to her so they could safely get across. Unfortunately, a larger group of derro had planned to use this area as an ambush and shot her several times with their crossbows. The battle for the sinkhole commenced!
To be continued…