Cast: Archibald, Dellin, Ranthin, Izzy, Bronan, and Rufus
NPCs: Helga Whoopknacker, Lanky Man, Father Burkholt (new), Lem, Knuckles, and Owen
Archibald has garnered the notice of members of the church that see rare potential in this initiate. He is summoned before Father Burkholt, who is the head of the 3rd most important temple in Nuln. Burkholt charges Archibald with a quest to earn entrance into the exclusive Order of the Traveling Flame Wot Doth Illuminate Shadows Made and Secrets Kept. He is to travel the Beaufort Pass, the southern-most of two passes through the Grey Mnts which separate the Empire from Bretonnia. On the Bretonnian side of the pass, he will reach Beaufort Garrison and find Chaplain Guy Margeaux, who has information vital to the church. Archibald is to bring his sealed missive back post haste, do so as discretely as possible, and take any reasonable measures to succeed, even if the cost includes lives. Of course, a previous messenger never returned and messenger pigeons have been lost. Archibald is asked to hire his own henchmen for protection, is given two messenger pigeons, and money to buy supplies, horses, pack mules.
Fall is nearing and with it the snows that may shut down the mountain passes. Time is of the essence. Also, a caravan merchant named Ike claims to have seen monsters in the pass…but that information is not considered reliable.
Meanwhile, the Lanky Man pays a visit to Dellin. L.M. says that empire troops were sent to Beaufort responding to trumped up allegations of Bretonnian outlaws raiding caravans. The Imperial 3rd Infantry Company, consisting of 200 soldiers, 20 horse, and 30 supply personnel, were sent. They are known as the Grey Mountain Company. They were recently given over to the command by 12 ubersoldaten, courtesy of the Toltevsky process. L.M. believes that this may be a “shake down” mission to see how well the ubersoldaten integrate with the regular forces. L.M. charges Dellin with watching over Archibald’s mission (which he seems to know about) and to spy on the Grey Mountain Company (but not to engage, which would be foolish and illegal…they are Imperial soldiers after all).
Dellin is given a crow named “Handsome”. Handsome has been trained to deliver short messages, no more than twenty words. Dellin has only to tell the crow “Crows fly black as night with all seeing eyes” and then state his short message. Then release Handsome and he will find the Lanky Man and deliver the news. Handsome likes to eat beetles and huckleberries. And he occasionally talks…his favorite word seems to be “Hungry!”
In preparing for the mission, Dellin goes to Helga Whoopknacker the apothecary. She berates Dellin for doing nothing about her poor Owen. Dellin says he’ll rescue Owen from Baron Strudel for her. Helga shares that Owen is fond of music and will often be calm when he hears music or a song. Later that night, the characters track down Lem and Knuckes training Owen on how to shake down a shop owner that doesn’t want to pay the protection money. Banter ensues, and then combat. Lem is killed. Knuckles escapes. Owen flies into a rage, but is put to sleep by Rufus’ “pressure point” technique, learned from the same teacher as Ghoma. A Valkyrie-like female minstrel was hired by Dellin to sing to Owen while they return him to Helga. (There was some comedy involving the minstrel, Bronan, and the Screaming Parrot tavern, but we need not go there.) Helga asks if Dellin made arrangements with Strussel for Owen’s release…when she learns that they killed Lem and kidnapped Owen, she realizes her time in Nuln has come to an end. She and Owen will leave for Altdorf immediately before retribution arrives.
Several hours later, near dawn, the party sets out for the Beaufort Pass. They travel for many uneventful days (a bit shy of two weeks) and find the Beaufort Garrison a smoldering ruin. They also find what can only be described as an “Ogre” sitting in the ruins gnawing on the bones of the dead. The Ogre is most likely a scavenger, the destruction of the fort was caused by a military confrontation. There are dead Bretonnian and Imperial soldiers and other obvious signs.
Rufus stays watch over the supplies (meaning his player had to leave) and the rest of the crew battled the Ogre. By using superb tactics, combined with some nifty rope tricks, they defeat the Ogre with little problem. Izzy got a bit banged up, and Bronan got the “parting shot” that separated the Ogre’s head from his shoulders.
Rufus earns 75 xp, and the rest of the crew 100 xp. No monetary awards were given for this session.