After sleeping at Hoenheim’s Tower, the party (Reið, Laria, Trokmutt, Conclin, Azriel, and the newly returned Jeryth) met for breakfast in the dining room. With a curt “Gentlemen, thank you for your service”, and a wave of his hand, the adventurers were instantly teleported out of the Tower, and materialized on an unfamiliar dirt road in the woods.
The party made some fruitless efforts to discern their location. Flying above the high tree-line proved useless, revealing only more woods in all directions. Azriel was able to spy what appeared to be large river to the north. Laria determined that they were in a temperate forest of hardwood trees, with normal woodland life in the area. Conclin was able to make some headway by getting some information from a local hawk. Based on this information, the party resolved to head southeast down the road, away from what the hawk described as “monsters” to the west.
After about 9 miles of travel with no change in the situation or landscape, the gang took a brief break for lunch, and a short foray into the woods, ostensibly to observe the local squirrel population. When this proved tiresome, they hit the road again.
Another 6 miles and still no change, the party decided to make camp with dusk upon them. It was at this point that Reið remembered Jerry the talking sword, and asked it for help in determining their location. In his usual prickly manner, Jerry deduced that they were in the woods, and that it was too dark for him to tell anything else.
As they prepared to make camp, a lone figure was spotted approaching from the southeast. Despite suspicion on both sides, Conclin was able to defuse the situation, and invited the lone dwarf to join them for the evening. He introduced himself as Rizdaveez, and, though wary to give details on his past, did reveal that he was the last of a party of dwarves, and had been wandering the woods for days until he found the road.
Trokmutt took the first shift, and it passed without issue. Laria took second shift, and sometime after midnight, was alerted to an approaching creature when Firel awoke, and began growling towards the northwest. Laria quickly awoke his companions, and Conclin addressed the shadowy figure with a Dancing Lights spell. The figure, apparently an old human man, proved difficult to read, and when the lights wore out, began approaching again. Laria was shocked as Firel quickly went from anger, to submissive fear, to walking forward and sniffing and licking the strange man’s hand, all in a matter of moments! Sensing no hostility in the man, Laria invited him to sit by the fire.
The party asked some questions of the man, but the cryptic answers they received offered little in the way of information. When asked if he was a friend of the forest, he claimed to “serve her, as I serve all living things.” The gang was getting drowsy, and they began to bed down again after an eventful day. However, before anyone could get settled, the party was startled when the old man unexpectedly grabbed Jeryth by the arm violently. As the man’s eyes rolled back in his head, he pulled Jeryth close, and whispered in his ear. The two exchanged whispers for a few seconds, when suddenly, the old man released his grip, and proceeded to lay down and go to sleep.
As the party looked to Jeryth for a reaction, he became wild eyed with what appeared to be both fear and exhilaration! He asked the party for help, and to come with him immediately. When pressed for a reason, his response was “to save an innocent life.” Jeryth then quickly packed his things, and took off at a brisk pace, southeast down the road. The party, left with few options, followed his lead, and left the old man behind.
The group reached a large boulder by the side of the road, and, again following Jeryth’s lead, headed west into the woods, in the direction of the full moon. As they neared a clearing about 2 miles in, Radagast was able to communicate “DANGER” to Conclin, and Laria (in wolf form) confirmed the presence of multiple humans ahead . . . .