1. Path to Thunderspire – 20th February 2015
The group, having successfully extracted themselves from the kobold ruin they had fallen into on their return journey from aiding the haunted hamlet, made their weary way back to Winterhaven to rest up, sell their various scavenged gains, and purchase supplies.
It was while in the town getting these supplies, that the shopkeeper told Heskan about a deal he had wished to make to deliver some goods to a merchant in the seven pillared hall in Thunderspire Mountain. Although the deal seemed a little suspect, Heskan agreed though between him and others who had appeared from the party, there was some discussion as to the length of time needed to get there, and what recompense there might be. The shopkeeper was less than specific, but they took the deal none-the-less.
During this time, Corvar negotiated for the purchase of the shopkeeper’s mule, named Hendrix, hoping perhaps to have less to carry on such a long journey. The trade was indeed made, and through some show of skill the seeker managed to bluff the man into buying back the useless saddle that came with the mule, and gain 10 days worth of food for the mule as well.
When leaving the store, they come across Lord Padraig who, it seemed was looking for the group. Although many of the group had changed since the last time the leader of the town had seen them, he seemed desperate enough not to mention this, or care. It seemed there had been an intercepted letter that told of a trade with the late Kalorel and a group of slave traders by the name of the Bloodreavers who were threatening not only the people of Winterhaven, but also of Thunderspire Mountain where it is thought they originated. The lord wished the group to look into the situation for him for the good of the people.
Ah, it is with a heavy heart that I now write that the adventurers did put the question of payment to Lord Padraig so harshly and persistently that he was forced to concede some monetary reward if they took care of the situation, despite the fact that they would likely be paid by those of Thunderspire. This group had already almost bankrupted the town through the payments required for dealing with Kalorel and further disturbances, and Lord Padraig had no other money by which to pay them except that of his own personal savings which he had set aside for the education of his beloved daughter, that he would pay on the resolution of the threat.
It shames me to write this, but only then did the group agree to travel to Thunderspire (where they had already agreed to go for the merchant) and look into this threat. Long gone are the days when such a group might be called upon to help those in need without such mercenary tactics.
Their business with Lord Padraig concluded, they made their way to the tavern, where the group still had use of a free room, long before gifted to the group when their actions had rid the world of the necromancer. However all did not go well, for the woman (whose profession she readily called assassin) decided to roughly manhandle the tavern barmaid. The woman was so insulted by this action that Ayanna got bodily thrown out of the tavern and refused both entry and room for the night, and had to make do with sneaking into the stable for rest while the others did so in the comfort of their rooms.
The next day did not go very well either, and I had reason to wonder at the relative sanity of the dragonborn, who took it upon himself to attempt to peer into the rear entrance of Corvar’s mule, though for what reason is unclear. This seemed to irritate the mule, unsurprisingly, and he got kicked for his trouble.
With this inauspicious start to the day, the group headed for Thunderspire Mountain and what troubles and riches the journey might bring.
It was four days after leaving Winterhaven that the group reached Thunderspire Mountain. The sky was dark and filled with swirling thunderhead of black clouds, rumbling thunder and bright flashes of lighting that obscured the peak of the mountain ahead of them. It is said that Thunderspire Mountain is the largest of all of the Old Hills that cover the northeast portion of Nentir Vale.
They head up the cobbled path that leads from the Trade Road to the Minotaur Gate at the side of the mountain, the primary path to reach the Seven-Pillared Hall. However when they enter the mountain passage beyond it soon becomes clear that not everything is as calm as the rest of the journey has been.
Along the rocky passage, an partially opened doorway was seen, and from within there came the raucus laughter of hobgoblins tormenting a captive. After ascertaining the situation in which fate had placed a group of Bloodreavers in easy reach, they decided to relieve the hobgoblin slavers of their captive.
The fight however did not start well, for as Ayanna attempted to open the door quietly seemed to be struck with the same ham-handed issues she had had in Winterhaven, and the door was flung wide, crashing against the wall and alerting all the enemies as to their presence.
The group, which had before relied upon both the adept healing of Ulrik (who had not yet caught up to the group) and one of the barbarian or heavily armoured to hold off the enemies (who were likewise absent at the time), were found to be under-prepared without either.
The halfling assassin who had so alerted the hobgoblins to their presence quickly scrambled atop some huge storage barrels near the door, hoping perhaps to get a better position for advantage over the enemy. However the creatures were far better armoured and defended than they had been used to fighting, and the group quickly became overwhelmed. While most of the group retreated out the door to better limit the attacks of the enemy, the assassin, Ayanna was left trapped on the barrels fending off several hobgoblins.
At first she seemed to be doing quite well, managing to take down one of the more stupid of the lot, while another fell to its death trying to get to her on the barrel. However the remaining were not so obliging, and she was soon beaten to a semi- unconscious state and left for dead while the hobgoblins turned their attention to the rest of the group.
The rest of the fight was a struggle for survival on both sides, both taking casualties. Hobgoblin soldiers fell, but so to did Heskan and Quellana was knocked down and seemed unable to get up as the enemy bore down upon her.
Ultimately it was a showdown between the seeker Corvar and the Hobgoblin Warmaster, both of whom were so close to death as to be barely standing.
Fortunately for our group, a well aimed shot took down the leader of the hobgoblins and, beaten and bloodied but still alive, the seeker helped restore the rest of the party to consciousness along with the aid of the captive halfling they had rescued.
Talking to the halfling afterwards, they found out that he had been captured by the Bloodreavers after he had been following them after they had been lingering suspiciously outside his family’s inn. He told them that the Bloodreavers stayed in a place called the Chamber of Eyes further in the mountain and gives them directions should they wish to get there to settle a score with them.
The group decide, considering their somewhat battered state, that a night in the inn would better serve them first before deciding whether or not to do so. And so, after gathering what loot they could from the Hobgoblin corpses, they followed Rendil, heading towards the Halfmoon Inn within the Seven-Pillared Hall to partake of the drink he had promised them in exchange for them saving his life.