27 Awakening 508 (cont’d)
The party, having slain two of the strange reptilian kobolds that had emerged from the hill, reset their campfire in front of the cave entrance. They decide to take up their guard shifts and see if any more emerge. Later in the night, Mõrvar sees several more skulk out from the cave mouth and put out the fire. As he wakes the others up, the kobolds continue to approach their camp. Rilka takes time to put on her armor while Surm and Savaric sneak out of camp to evade their attackers. Mõrvar gets ready to attack with his spear.
Two of the creatures charge into the camp from the outer darkness. Mõrvar dispatches one with a mighty, primal scream, cowing his companion into a shaken state. Rilka continues to struggle with her armor while the other, shaken as he is, attacks Mõrvar anyway. This one is quickly slain as well.
Meanwhile, Savaric sees another kobold skulking in the darkness. He fires upon it and misses. It attacks, though he quickly runs it through. Surm, hiding on the other side of camp, where he hears another of the odious creatures tromping through the woods. He fires a crossbow bolt blindly, to no avail, and runs, screaming, into camp.
As the party regroups, they hear movement in the woods—that suddenly stops. Surm and Mõrvar go to check it out and are ambushed by the kobold, who is as quickly dispatched as his kin. The party decides to wait out the rest of the night (Mõrvar was last watch, after all) and decide what to do in the morning.
28 Awakening 508
The next morning, after a lot of debate on the matter, it is decided that the party will go inside the hill to investigate the kobolds. Perhaps they can enhance their reputation with the town of Stavan by further protecting them from the monstrous threat.
Savaric and Rilka descend into the cave first, followed by Surm and Mõrvar. Taking the center tunnel, they pass the trap where they found the corpse before and continue down the long and winding tunnel. The cavern is cramped, damp, and smells of earth. Suddenly, the earth moves beneath Savaric and Rilka. Rilka manages to catch herself but Savaric falls into a 20’ pit. Rilka climbs down and touches him with their Wand of Cure Light Wounds. Mõrvar move the grapple to the other side of the pit with a mage hand and then Rilka and Savaric climb up the other side. Mõrvar and Surm do the same and they continue down the corridor after collecting their rope.
Savaric manages to find two more traps along the way, allowing the party to avoid them as the corridor finally opens into a chamber. Inside the chamber are 5 kobolds. After an awkward silence, one of the kobolds orders the others to charge, which they do. Rilka and Savaric quickly slay the four creatures and notice the fifth running down another tunnel. The chamber has a pile of cast-off goods from the town, coins, and the belongings of Lord Stavan’s man, Kirlan, whose body they had recovered previously. After a brief debate as to what to do with the pile of stuff, Mõrvar loads it into the dead man’s backpack and his own so that they can return it to the town—to further enhance their reputation. The party then decides to follow the last kobold down the tunnel.
The corridor leads to a dead-end with a trap door in the ceiling. Hand-holds are cut into the wall leading up to it. Savaric notices dust falling from the trap door, so the party suspects that the kobold scrambled up there recently. Rilka climbs up and opens the trap door and, sure enough, a spear comes stabbing down at her from above. Angry, the half-orc charges up into the space above where she squares off with the creature. Though this one seems stronger than the others, it, too, is quickly dispatched.
The party now finds themselves in an abandoned shack. Savaric climbs a tree and can see Corocal’s Barrow about a quarter mile from their location. The ranger manages to lead them back to the hill and to their waiting horses.
As the party rides back into town, a dead kobold slung over one of their horses, the usual whispering campaign begins. “The hunters return with another beast!” At Surm’s urging, the party stops in front of the Green Maiden Inn and impales the kobold on an upturned spear. “This is a kobold. We slew him and others at Corocal’s Barrow.” Then the party left the hushed crowd at the inn for Lord Stavan’s manor.
Knocking on the door, they are met by Lord Stavan himself. Surm tells the tale of what was found in the barrow and offers to show one of the Lord’s men the tunnel and the proof. Lord Stavan asks them to show him. So they take the Lord out to the abandoned shack and show him the tunnel into the barrow. He tells them that he cannot thank them enough for their service to the town and that they will be his guests tonight at the manor.
After cleaning up and during a fine dinner, Surm hints at the possibility of letters of recommendation for employment in Skeene, which is where they are headed next. The lord responds that he knows of no one in need of master hunters per se, but he can recommend them to his friend Lord Donat in Skeene and will do so gladly.
29 Awakening 508
The party, with a letter of recommendation in hand, leaves Stavan for Skeene.