Western Alliance Runelords Campaign

Welcome to your Adventure Log!
A blog for your campaign

Every campaign gets an Adventure Log, a blog for your adventures!

While the wiki is great for organizing your campaign world, it’s not the best way to chronicle your adventures. For that purpose, you need a blog!

The Adventure Log will allow you to chronologically order the happenings of your campaign. It serves as the record of what has passed. After each gaming session, come to the Adventure Log and write up what happened. In time, it will grow into a great story!

Best of all, each Adventure Log post is also a wiki page! You can link back and forth with your wiki, characters, and so forth as you wish.

One final tip: Before you jump in and try to write up the entire history for your campaign, take a deep breath. Rather than spending days writing and getting exhausted, I would suggest writing a quick “Story So Far” with only a summary. Then, get back to gaming! Grow your Adventure Log over time, rather than all at once.

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Welcome to Sandpoint!

You are in Sandpoint for an auspicious occasion! It is the 23rd of Rova and the Autumnal Equinox. For five years, the faithful of Sandpoint have attended church in temporary structures erected after fire destroyed the previous temple, and while their new religious leader was helpful, kind, and wise, church wasn’t the same. Now, the new cathedral is finally done. All that remains is for the Swallowtail Festival to renew the site’s blessings from the gods and it will be as if the Sandpoint Fire had never occurred.

This is a chance to enjoy this idyllic coastal town, an oasis along the Lost Coast. What has brought you to Sandpoint?

Our Party
Mishka – Elf Ranger
Klemh – Human Alchemist
Sir Gregor – Human Cavalier
Milan – Human Fighter
Zhandre – Half-orc ?
Blunt – Drow Cleric

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Burnt Offerings Part One

1. Arrival at Sandpoint
Sandpoint – 1240 people, mostly humans wtih a small number of halflings, elves, dwarves, gnomes, half-elves, half-orcs. Mayor Kendra Deverin, Sheriff Belor Hemlock, Town Priest Abstalar Zantus
How has your character arrived at Sandpoint? Visitor? Native?

2. The Swallowtail Festival
Held on the Autumnal Equinox, the 22nd or 23rd of Rova. It is morning…
For five years, the faithful of Sandpoint have attended church in temporary structures erected after fire destroyed the previous temple, and while their new religious leader was helpful, kind, and wise, church wasn’t the same. Now, the new cathedral is finally done. All that remains is for the Swallowtail Festival to renew the site’s blessings from the gods and it will be as if the Sandpoint Fire had never occurred.

The Swallowtail Festival begins promptly, as scheduled, on the Autumnal Equinox. The square before the church quickly becomes crowded as locals and travelers arrive, and several merchant tents featuring food, clothes, local crafts, and souvenirs are there to meet them.

WELCOMING SPEECHES: The turnout for the opening speeches is quite respectable, and the four keynote speakers each deliver short but well-received welcomes to the festival. Mayor Deverin’s friendly attitude and excitement prove contagious as she welcomes visitors to town and jokes about how even Larz Rovanky, the local tanner (and notorious workaholic) managed to tear himself away from the tannery to attend, much to everyone’s amusement (except Larz’s).
Deverin
Kendra Deverin:
Kendra Deverin has served as Sandpoint’s mayor since 4702 AR. Lawmaker, judge, and general peacemaker, she has proven to be both an adept diplomat and stern hand when need be, both skills honed during her youth in Magnimar. With a personal—some say sisterly—style of governing, most of Sandpoint’s citizens hold deep respect for their fiery-haired mayor.

“Greetings all and welcome to Sandpoint’s Swallowtail Festival! Today we celebrate the re-opening of the town’s cathedral. Why, this must be a special ocassion if even Larz Rovanky can find a moment to stop working at the tannery to attend today! (Laughter) And to our visitors, welcome to Sandpoint! I hope you will enjoy our hospitality!” (Cheers!)
Belor hemlock
Belor Hemlock
Sheriff Belor Hemlock brings the crowd down a bit with his dour mood, his reminder to be safe around the evening’s bonfire, and his request for a moment of silence to remember those who lost their lives in the fire that claimed the town’s previous church several years ago.

“Good morning. I am Sheriff Hemlock. Welcome to the festival. I hope everyone will remember to be careful around this evening’s bonfire. (Silence). Now, I would ask that we all bow our heads to remember those who lost their lives in the fire that destroyed the previous church five years ago.” (Silence)

Mayor Deverin: “Our next speaker was supposed to be nobleman Lonjiku Kaijitsu, but he has taken ill and won’t be able to join us.” (PCs hear several people mutter: “I’m surprised they thought he’d speak today. He hates parties anyway!”)
“Next up is Sandpoint’s own showman Cyrdak Drokkus!”
Drokkus
Cyrdak Drokkus:
“Well, now the party can finally begin!! Let’s face it, the last five years have been opening act we’ve ever seen, but come on! Let’s open the show!! (applause and cheers). And I don’t think Hemlock has smiled once in all those years! (laughter).

Drokkus is more than up to the challenge of bringing the crowd’s mood back up with his rousing anecdotes. He delivers a not-completely-irreverent recap of the long process the town went through to finance and construct the new cathedral. He throws in a bit of self promotion at the end, as is his wont, inviting everyone to stop by the Sandpoint Theater the following evening to check out his new production of “The Harpy’s Curse,” revealing that the lead role of Avisera the harpy queen will be played by none other than the famous Magnimarian diva Allishanda!

Finally, Father Zantus steps up to give a short speech thanking everyone for coming before declaring the Swallowtail Festival underway.
Zantus
Father Zantus:
When the Sandpoint chapel burnt to the ground in 4702 AR, killing the town’s priest, Ezakien Tobyn, his position in the town was filled by his top acolyte, Abstalar Zantus. Though Father Zantus is himself a cleric of Desna, his role as high-priest requires him to be open to other faiths, and he is more than willing and open to assist followers of other gods with spiritual matters. His role as high-priest keeps him very busy and he is having a hard time keeping up with all the current happenings in town.

“Today is a momentous and holy occasion that we all should celebrate! At sunset, we will recite the Prayer of First Dreaming to consecrate the temple, but for now, let us enjoy the Swallowtail Festival!

FESTIVAL FUN AND GAMES:
Numerous games and contests take place during the day, including sack races, games of hide-and-seek, weight-lifting challenges, balance beam contests, tug-of-war events, and the like. The PCs can take part in as many or as few of these games as they wish—you can use these games as a method to introduce the PCs to each other or to key NPCs in the town. Resolve games with opposed ability score or skill checks. Winners of these games generally win nothing more than bragging rights for the rest of the day, but for many of Sandpoint’s residents, this is a fine prize indeed!

SWALLOWTAIL RELEASE , LUNCH, and CONSECRATION: Finally, Father Zantus takes the central podium…He uses a Thunderstone to get everyone’s attention, but it also has served as a signal for a secret attack on the town!
Burnt offferings banner
3. Goblin Assault!
Just then, goblins began to pour out of crates and holes around the town square, burning wagons and attacking anything that moved. Over the chaos, several began chanting a bizarre song in a shrill, scratchy voice:

“Goblins chew and goblins bite.
Goblins cut and goblins fight.
Stab the dog and cut the horse,
Goblins eat and take by force!
Goblins race and goblins jump.
Goblins slash and goblins bump.
Burn the skin and mash the head,
Goblins here and you be dead!
Chase the baby, catch the pup.
Bonk the head to shut it up.
Bones be cracked, flesh be stewed,
We be goblins! You be food!”

Luckily for the town of Sandpoint, several young adventurers have filtered into town over the past day and they lept into the fray, killing goblins and saving the townspeople. This included a young nobleman named Aldern Foxglove, who thanks the PCs and invites them to join him for dinner at the Rusty Dragon tomorrow. They also meet the owner of the Rusty Dragon, a beautiful and exotic Tian woman named Ameiko Kaijitsu, who rewards the PCs with a free week of lodging for defeating the goblins.

Local Heroes
In the days that follow, the PCs are known by everyone in the town and treated like heroes. They are also of interest to Sheriff Hemlock, who asks the PCs for some help.
Father Zantus contacts Sheriff Hemlock about the tomb of Father Tobyn being opened. With the recent battle, Hemlock can’t spare any guards to investigate and asks the PCs to do it. He offers to pay them each 10 GP if they accompany him. On the way to the Boneyard, Sheriff Hemlock thanks them again and asks each of them a question about their background. They meet Zantus and Hemlock asks him to wait as the group investigates the tomb. Once they enter, they are attacked by skeletons. They discover the remnants of a Robe of Bones and that the body of Father Tobyn has been removed!

Later, the PCs are invited by Aldern Foxglove to join him in the Tickwood Forest for a boar hunt. They agree and easily bring back a wild boar to be cooked at the Rusty Dragon. There, they witness a domestic dispute between Ameiko and her father, Lonjiku Kaijitsu. Lonjiku orders Ameiko to leave the tavern forever and come with him to Magnimar. She refuses and the PCs try to help. Lonjiku tells Ameko: “You’re as dead to me as your mother.”

The next day, the party is once again asked to help with an investigation into a family whose child has been bitten by a goblin. They discover the father dead and a goblin standing over him. They fight and kill the goblin. They also are asked by the Sheriff to join him in the Mayor’s office, where they meet a local elf ranger named Shalelu Andosana. She explains the local goblin tribes and their leaders, as well as the bugbear ranger Bruthazmus who lives in the area. Any of them could be connected to the attack on Sandpoint. Someone is organizing the goblin tribes…

On their way back to the inn, a timid elderly halfling named Bethana, who works at the Rusty Dragon, approaches the party. She says that her employer has gone missing. She found a note written in Tian written by Ameiko’s brother, Tsuto, asking her to meet him at the family glassworks factory. The sheriff and many of his mean are in Magnimar, getting more troops. Only the PCs can investigate.

At the Kaijitsu Glassworks, the PCs discover a horrific scene. A group of goblins have entered the factory and are tearing up the place. As they fight the goblins, the PCs are also attacked by Ameiko’s half-elf brother Tsuto. The PCs finally defeat them all, only to find Lonjiku Kaijitsu, dead and encased in molten glass. They also rescue Ameiko in the lower level of the glassworks, along with a secret tunnel leading into a dungeon area. Tsuto’s journal indicates that Tsuto’s girlfriend, Nualia, is behind everything and is some kind of demonic woman. The Thistletop goblins were behind the raid and their leader Ripnugget is in league with the bugbear Bruthazmus. There is also something called Malfeshnekor in the lower chambers. They also plan on doing something with Tobyn’s body at the Thistletop shrine. Nualia’s transformation includes some kind of strange “hand” and is being done to the demon Lamashtu.

After a rest, the PCs need to decide whether to investigate the tunnel below the Glassworks to seek out this Nualia before she unleashes another attack on Sandpoint…
Tsuto handout2

Under the Glassworks, the party investigates a tunnel entrance in the basement. This was clearly a smuggler’s tunnel at one point as part of it leads down to the shore. But they also find an older brick wall that had been recently torn down, leading to an even older set of tunnels. Here, the party discovers a forgotten “runewell”, an ancient portal of power used by the Runelords long ago. It’s energy has twisted several creatures down here, including a quasit who helped introduce Nualia to the demon queen Lamashtu. After dispatching a sinspawn creature, a deformed goblin Koruvus, and the quasit herself, the party studies the runewell and figures out how to destroy it. There is clearly more to this dungeon but the stairs going down are blocked by rubble. Written above the staircase in Abyssal are the words “Evil below. We will kill all humans.” Perhaps another day…

For now, the party has unearthed enough evidence that the Thistletop Goblins are not only working for Nualia, they are planning an even bigger assault on Sandpoint. It is time to go to Thistletop!

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About Goblins

The ranger Shalelu Andosana spends time with you, explaining what she knows about the local goblin tribes.

GOBLIN TRIBES: As she mentioned earlier, there are five major goblin tribes in the region.

The closest to Sandpoint are the Birdcruncher goblins, who live in caves along the western edge of the Devil’s Platter, although traditionally these goblins are the least aggressive of the five.

To the south are the Licktoad goblins of the Brinestump Marsh, pests who are excellent swimmers.

East are the Seven Tooth goblins of Shank’s Wood, goblins who’ve secured a place for themselves by raiding Sandpoint’s junkyard and rebuilding the stolen refuse into armor and weapons.

Farther east are the Mosswood goblins, likely the largest tribe but one traditionally held back by feuding families within their own ranks.

And finally, there are the Thistletop goblins, who live on the Nettlewood coast atop a small island that some say holds a passing resemblance to a decapitated head.

GOBLIN HEROES: Shalelu notes that goblins generally live short, violent lives. It’s unusual for a single goblin to achieve any real measure of notoriety, but when one does, it’s well earned. Currently, six goblins in the region enjoy the status of “hero.”

Big Gugmut is an unusually muscular and tall goblin from Mosswood who, it is said, had a hobgoblin for a mother and a wild boar for a father.

Koruvus was a champion of the Seven Tooth tribe, as well known for his short temper as he was for his prized possession—a magic longsword sized for a human that the goblin stubbornly kept as his own (despite the fact that it was too large for him to properly wield). Koruvus vanished several months ago after he supposedly discovered a “secret hideout” in a cave along the cliffs, but the Seven Tooth goblins remain convinced he’s out there still, a ghost or worse, waiting to murder any goblin who tries to discover his hideout.

Vorka is a notorious goblin cannibal who lives in the Brinestump marsh, a “hero” mostly to goblins other than the Licktoad tribe.

Rendwattle Gutwad is the obese chieftain of the Brinestump goblins, a corpulent monster who, it is said, never leaves his throne.

Ripnugget is the leader of the Thistletop goblins and controls what the five tribes agree is the best lair.

And then there’s Bruthazmus, an infamous bugbear ranger who lives in northern Nettlewood and often visits the five tribes to trade things he’s stolen from caravans for alcohol, news, or magic arrows. Shalelu notes that Bruthazmus has a particular hatred of elves, and that they have fought on several occasions. To date, neither of them has managed to get the upper hand on the other, but Shalelu bitterly vows that she won’t be the first to fall in their private war.
Gotmurt

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Assault on Thistletop (part 1)

THE ANCIENT SITE KNOWN AS THISTLETOP HAS LONG SERVED AS A DEN FOR
GOBLINS. TODAY, IT SERVES AS SOMETHING MORE—THE LAIR OF A BAND OF
OUTLAWS LED BY NUALIA, KNAVES AND CRIMINALS WHO HAVE RECRUITED
THE GOBLINS AS THEIR INSTRUMENTS OF DESTRUCTION. IN ORDER TO
SAVE SANDPOINT FROM THESE GOBLINS, A JOURNEY TO THISTLETOP MUST
EVENTUALLY BE UNDERTAKEN—BUT THE LOST COAST’S NEW HEROES SHOULD
TAKE CARE TO ENSURE THEY ARE PREPARED FOR THIS STAGE OF THE
ADVENTURE. GOBLINS ARE THE LEAST OF THE DANGERS THAT LURK IN AND
BELOW THISTLETOP—

The party finds that Thistletop lives up to its namesake – it is completely surrounded by a thistle forest that has created a maze of prickly walls. Within these walls, the goblins have created the outer defenses of their home. In traversing this maze, the party encounters some goblin warriors, refugees, and goblin dogs. They also fight an advisor to Warchief Ripnugget, a goblin druid named Gogmurt, who fights with a cougar names Tangletooth. Although Gogmurt traverses the nettles without harm, he is not match for the heroes. During the battle, Gogmurt does speak to the party and tells them that Chief Ripnugget is no longer in control of Thistletop – he has become enthralled with a very angry woman with white hair and weird eyes and a torn up belly. “Worse than a harpy, that one!” Gogmurt spits. Then he quickly clarifies his accusation: “The woman. Not Chief Ripnugget. Don’t tell him I called her a harpy!”

After dealing with Gogmurt, the party creeps through the thistles to the cliff and a long rope bridge that spans the gulf over the water and to the island of Thistletop…

If you are keeping track of XP, the individual total for this night’s adventure was 1416 XP each.

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Thistletop Part 2

So much happened in this session…where to begin?

After crossing the rope bridge on to Thistletop itself and dispensing of a few more goblins, the party freed a trapped horse named Shadowmist that was immediately befriended by Sir Gregor. They then ventured into the keep and found the throne room of Chief Ripnugget, leader of the Thistletop goblins. Astride his giant gecko, Ripnugget was a powerful foe but he was defeated finally in a bloody battle.

Next, the party stumbled into the lair of the bugbear ranger Bruthazmus, who was found partially clothed with his harem of female goblins. With his loincloth around his ankles, the bugbear was no match for the PCs. Next, they encountered a hired thug, Orik Vancaskerkin, who quickly realized he was no match for the party and whimpered his way into servitude to Sir Gregor, who ordered Orik to retrieve Shadowmist and get him safely across the bridge. The last lackey the party discovered was the wizard Lyrie Akenja, who was brought here to study the Shrine to Lamashtu inside Thistletop. The party battled and defeated the young wizard, as well as two Yeth Hounds, evil dog creatures. With this level of Thistletop cleared and the discovery of a staircase down, the party left to heal and rest outside the dungeon. It was evening anyway so there is a good chance no one will notice how quiet things are in the keep. They did discover Shadowmist, standing next to the cliff, with Orik hanging on for dear life to Shadowmist’s reins. The party saved him and were able to get Shadowmist across the chasm safely.

It is now morning and time to re-enter the keep before Nualia and any other creatures stir within!

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Burnt Offerings Concludes
We kill an evil priestess

We head back down into the Thistletop dungeon to the second level. The floor is angled and the air is fresh. We head through an open door. There are chisel marks on the door. There are statues in the next room of men holding glaives. There is a shiny patch on the floor. We detect a trap and decide to pull the statue over with a rope – on the third attempt! We pull it over and the trap is sprung – the statues chop at people trapped by two portcullises. We decide to jump across. Everyone makes it across except Sir Gregor. He steps into the empty alcove while the trap goes off.

We hear water to the north. The door opens to reveal a room with burning skulls, stuffed beasts, and a deformed woman. Nualia! And a yeth hound! The yeth hound howls and Miska and Blunt run in fear. Blunt ends up in the trap and falls through the floor. Miska cowers at the portcullis. Nualia hits Milan who falls over almost dead until Cox rolls a nat 20 to stabilize! Zhandre lands the killing blow. Dellnia sends an earth elemental down to rescue Blunt.

We find a sihedron medallion (a seven-sided symbol somehow connected to the rune wells). We find Nualia’s journals. Here plan was to burn Sandpoint and describes how to use the rune well. We realize that Nualia was a pawn in a bigger plan.

We enter the next room. There is a stack of coins at one end and a door flanked by skeletons at the other. We through the door. In the next room, statues fill a column-lined room. At the end of the room is a statue with of a man with a glaive and a book. There are sarcophagi in the alcoves. Miska and Gregor open one and Gregor smashes a skeleton. A ghostly figure appears. We kill three shadows.

We find a secret door in the room. It leads to a room filled with a tide pool. On the crumbling walls, there are murals. One shows a mountain with a face carved into it looking over a city with spires. The face looks like the face on the statue. In the there is the remnant of a treasury including a giant-sized helmet. Zahndre casts detect magic and stuff glows. The helmet rotates and a claw attacks Gregor. It’s a giant hermit crab. Milan delivers the killing blow.

We go back to the hallway with the statue of coins. There are two coin slots next tot the statue. We put two gold coins from the pool room in the slots. The statue rotates into the floor and reveals a room with three doors. All creepy looking. The room has been untouched for years. We head to the north. The room has a throne with a ghostly figure who appears to be speaking to a group. Dellnia figures out that he is speaking in Thassilonian. The ghost is telling someone to remain and that Alzenast’s wrath is nothing compared to his strength. We move to the east door. There is a series of tables with bones on the floor and tools. Zhandre figures out that this was a transmutation lab working on human flesh! One tool looks like a sihedron star.

We go to the southern door. There is no handle but a space for a sihedron star. We put the tool in the slot. The room beyond has a burning pit that smells of burning hair. A feeling of crushing despair washes over us. Gregor is attacked and immediately goes down. A giant bat/monkey/creature says, “You all shall die!” It’s called Malfeshnekor. Milan goes down. Dellnia summons a mud elemental twice after the first one is obliterated. Miska lands the killing blow with a +1 returning dagger. It was a greater barghest.

We return to Sandpoint. We divide the treasure and each character receives 966 gp. Thus concludes Burnt Offerings.

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A Murder Most Vile!
The Skinsaw Murders Begin

We are at the Rusty Dragon relaxing after ending the threat from Nualia and the goblins. The sheriff comes in and asks for our help. There has been a murder, and it reminds him of the work of The Chopper. About 10 years ago, there was a string of murders in Sandpoint. Over the course of a month, there as a new victim each day. Each time the corpses were found dismembered, eyes and tongue removed. There were twenty-five victims in all. The sheriff at the time discover The Chopper killing a victim in an alley one night. The sheriff was killed but the town watch followed a trail of blood to Stoot’s Island (named after the island’s only resident, a man famous for his carved birds). It turned out that Stoot was The Chopper! When the watch found him, he had removed his own tongue and eyes. It appeared that he was offering tongues and eyes to a demon. Soon after, there was a fire that destroyed the church. (We know now that Nualia burned it down). The locals call all of this The Late Unpleasantness.

Now there is a new string of murders. Two victims were found last night at the saw mill. There were discovered by Eyebore Thorn. This is the second set of murders in the last few days. The sheriff believes that the murderer knows one of us – Blunt. He believes that a note found at the scene addressed to Blunt was meant to throw off suspicion from the real suspect. We need to keep this quiet or the villagers may come to suspect us. The sheriff deputizes us in exchange for our help.

Clues

  • The Sandpoint Lumber Mill is the crime scene. The bodies are still there. It is operated by Eyebore Thorn and Banny Harker. It is owned by the Scarnetti Family.
    Sheriff Hemlock interrogated Eyebore.
    Katrine Vinder is victim #1. She is the daughter of the merchant Van Vinder. He has two daughters: Katrine and Shaless.
    Banny Harker is victim #2.*

We go to the sawmill. There is a crowd outside. The mill typically runs late at night. There are signs of a desperate struggle in the last twelve hours. One set of footprints is of a barefoot humanoid that smells of rotten meat. There is a lingering scent of decay. Katrine’s body is a log splitter. Harker’s body is nailed to the wall, his jaw removed, a sihedron symbol carved into his chest. His body shows signs of of slashes by five fingered claws. He smells of rotten meat. There is a handaxe nearby – it smells of rotten meat and is covered in blood. Blunt believes that undead are involved – possible some kind of ghast.

Miska follows the tracks to a timber pier. Muddy footprints lead from the end of the pier to the mill. We find tracks on the opposite shore that lead into the woods.

When the sheriff told Van Vinder that Katrine was killed, Van flew into a rage because she was at the mill.

It appears that both bodies were desecrated using tools.

In the previous murders, the town guards were accosted by a crazed man who led them to a barn. In the barn, they found three bodies and a letter. The letter read:
“Your lordship,
These men were con men.” All had sihedrons carved into their chests. The bodies are currently at the sheriff’s office.

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More background on the murder!

Sheriff Belor HemlockHemlock.png
“First, let me thank you again for all you’ve done for Sandpoint. It’s fortunate you’ve proven yourselves so capable, because we’ve a problem I think you can help us with—a problem I wish I didn’t have to involve anyone with, but one that needs dealing with now before the situation grows worse.

“Put simply, we have a murderer in our midst— one who, I fear, has only begun his work. Some of you doubtless remember the Late Unpleasantness, how this town nearly tore itself apart in fear as Chopper’s slayings went on unanswered. I’m afraid we might have something similar brewing now.

“Last night, the murderer struck at the sawmill. There are two victims, and they’re… they’re in pretty gruesome shape. The bodies were discovered by one of the mill workers, a man named Ibor Thorn, and by the time my men and I arrived on the scene, a crowd of curious gawkers had already sprung up. I’ve got my men stationed there now, keeping the mill locked down, but the thing that bothers me isn’t the fact that we have two dead bodies inside. It’s the fact that this is actually the second set of murders we’ve had in the last few days.

“I come to you for help in this matter—my men are good, but they are also green. They were barely able to handle themselves against the goblins, and what we’re facing now is an evil far worse than goblins. I need the help. But I’m afraid you’ll need the help too. You see, I’m afraid that this particular murderer knows one of you as well.”

At this point, Sheriff Hemlock hands you a bloodstained piece of parchment that has the name “Blunt” on one side and this message scrawled on the other:

“We have spoken of this before, my master. Now it begins. Join the pack and it will end.” – Your Lordship

Hemlock explains: “the note was found pinned to the sleeve of the latest victim by a splinter of wood. I know that none of you were involved in the murder but clearly someone is trying to frame you or at least send some kind of message. If word of this note gets out, the townspeople here may not be as understanding as I am. Will you quietly help me in this investigation?”

If the PCs agree, Hemlock deputizes them, explaining that he doesn’t have enough men to both investigate the murders and protect the town. He will give them any support they need but they need to try and keep this investigation quiet.

Sandpoint Lumber Mill Clues

SANDPOINT LUMBER MILL:
The most recent murders took place here—the bodies are still present, and little has been done with the crime scene itself. Sheriff Hemlock suggests that this should be the first place the PCs investigate, since he would like to clean the mill up right away and get the bodies buried.

IBOR THORN:
Sheriff Hemlock has interrogated Ibor, the man who discovered the bodies at the lumber mill, and doesn’t suspect the frightened man knows much more.

VEN VINDER:
This merchant is Sheriff Hemlock’s only suspect, although the sheriff is fairly certain that Ven is innocent and that the murders were committed by someone else.

THE FIRST MURDERS:
Three con men from the town of Galduria were found murdered in an abandoned barn south of town a few days ago—their bodyguard survived the assault but has gone insane and was sent to Habe’s Sanatorium—a privately run respite for the insane.

THE RUNE:
The star carved on one victim’s chest certainly has significance to the killer, but Hemlock’s at a loss as to what it means. Perhaps an expert on runes (such as local scholar Brodert Quink) can be consulted?

Mill Operators
Ibor Thorn
Banny Harker

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The clues so far...

Sandpoint Lumber Mill Clues

SANDPOINT LUMBER MILL: The most recent murders took place here—the bodies are still present, and little has been done with the crime scene itself. Sheriff Hemlock suggests that this should be the first place the PCs investigate, since he would like to clean the mill up right away and get the bodies buried.

IBOR THORN: Sheriff Hemlock has interrogated Ibor, the man who discovered the bodies at the lumber mill, and doesn’t suspect the frightened man knows much more.

VEN VINDER: This merchant is Sheriff Hemlock’s only suspect, although the sheriff is fairly certain that Ven is innocent and that the murders were committed by someone else.

THE FIRST MURDERS: Three con men from the town of Galduria were found murdered in an abandoned barn south of town a few days ago—their bodyguard survived the assault but has gone insane and was sent to Habe’s Sanatorium—a privately run respite for the insane.

THE RUNE: The star carved on one victim’s chest certainly has significance to the killer, but Hemlock’s at a loss as to what it means. Perhaps an expert on runes (such as local scholar Brodert Quink) can be consulted?

Mill Operators: Ibor Thorn, Banny Harker

THE TIMBER PIER: Timber is delivered to the mill via a small pier that extends out into the Turandarok River. A DC 15 Perception check made by anyone investigating the pier reveals a set of muddy footprints that leads from one end of the pier up to the mill itself. A DC 15 Survival check reveals that a barefoot human man clambered up from the mud under the pier, crossed over to the mill, and then scaled the wall to an upper-floor window.

THE MURDER SCENE: The mill interior is coated with sawdust strewn with footprints and splashes of blood. A DC 10 Survival check reveals what should be obvious— that a desperate struggle took place here several hours ago.

THE ROTTEN SMELL: The lingering scent of decay in the air is curious—it smells almost as if an animal had died somewhere in the room and its remains were allowed to ripen.

KATRINE’S BODY: Poor Katrine was killed instantly when pushed into the log splitter. Her mangled, ruined remains lie on the mill’s lower floor amid heaps of bloodstained firewood. A pale-faced, obviously upset guard stands at attention nearby. The log splitter itself is powered by a waterwheel and consists of a chute in the floor with rotating saw blades that cut logs as they are fed in.

HARKER’S BODY: Harker’s body has been horribly desecrated. The poor man has been affixed to the wall by several hooks normally used to hang machinery. The body is mutilated, the face carved away and lower jaw missing entirely. His bare chest is defaced as well, bearing a strange rune in the shape of a seven-pointed star. This rune (the Sihedron Rune) should be familiar to the PCs, especially if they own the Sihedron medallion once worn by Nualia. Its appearance on the chest of a murdered man should drive home its importance to the PCs, yet they should be at a loss still as to what the rune means. A DC 25 Knowledge (arcana or history) check is enough to identify the marking as the Sihedron Rune, an antiquated glyph that symbolizes arcane magic once practiced in ancient Thassilon.

Closer examination of the body combined with a DC 15 Heal check reveals the presence of several additional wounds. Unlike the deeper slashes on the body, these smaller gashes almost seem to have been made by claws—claws on a five-fingered, human-sized hand. The rotten scent seems stronger near these wounds. The body is only recognizable as Harker’s by a faded tattoo of a raven across his lower abdomen. With his missing face and jaw, his body is in no shape to function for a speak with dead spell.

THE SUSPICIOUS AXE: A handaxe is embedded in the floor near the log splitter, as if it had been dropped there. The handle is covered with bloody finger-marks, and a close examination of the head reveals two things of note. First, smears of what look like rotten flesh and fragments of bone are caked on its blade, and second, the rotten meat stink is strong on it. Someone who makes a DC 15 Knowledge (religion) check can identify the lingering stink of corruption as beyond that which a dead body can normally produce—the axe was likely used within the last 24 hours against some form of corporeal undead.

THE MARSH: If the PCs think to investigate the marsh on the other side of the river from the mill, a DC 20 Perception check reveals a relatively dry spot that bears a number of barefoot human tracks and a lingering stink of rotten flesh. A DC 15 Survival check made at this point reveals that the tracks lead from and into the river, but never away from the site. The spot is hidden by several low banks of nettles, but offers a perfect view of the mill to anyone hidden here.

STORY AWARD: Award the PCs 400 XP for identifying the Sihedron Rune, 400 XP if they deduce the fact that the murderer watched the site and perhaps used the river to cover his tracks, and 600 XP if they discover that the murderer may have been an undead creature

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