Session 11 – Old Owl Well

Before the friends leave the Townmaster’s Hall, Sildar takes Quinn aside and asks him to be part of the Lord’s Alliance. The lad agrees and Sildar gives him the title of “cloak.” After exiting, his friends ask him what that was all about, and he tells them what happened. They express annoyance that he may be called away to do things which would leave their group under-powered. He suggests that they come along on the Lord’s Alliance missions, and in fact what they are doing now is one of those missions. The issue seems unresolved.

The friends go to the orchard and meet Daran Edermath, an older elf who used to be an adventurer. He congratulates them on defeating the Redbrands and says that if they are looking for more trouble to visit the Old Owl Well about 50 miles east of town. Undead have been seen here, and since it used to be a place of evil magic, maybe the magic has risen again. He does not have any information on Cragmaw Castle, however, and suggests to talk to Qelline since she knows everyone around here.

Visiting Alderleaf Farm on the southeast side of town, the friends are confronted with a small halfling who threatens them with a stick. Nylian breaks the stick and the boy runs and hides in the bushes. Qelline, dressed in farmer’s clothes and holding a hoe apologizes for her son Carp as he “gets riled up sometimes” and asks them what she can do for them. They ask about Cragmaw Castle and she says she doesn’t know the location, but a friend of hers named Reidloth might. He is a druid and “knows every inch of these lands.” He went up to the ruins of the town called Thundertree which is northwest near Neverwinter. They can seek him there. She draws them a map. Carp pokes Nylian in the butt with a stick and challenges him to a duel. Nylian says that he agrees and the child runs away again. Qelline seems a bit disturbed but wishes the friends well on their journey.

The friends decide that they need help and go back to the Stonehill Inn where they find Saffron drinking and chatting. She greets them and they tell her about their adventure rooting out the Redbrands. She also meets Brunig and says that he looks like “a fine warrior.” They ask her if she’d like to come with them to Old Owl Well and she doesn’t seem that interested until they offer her money up front and a cut of anything they find (equal shares). They settle on 100 gold and Brunig pays her. She is happy to come along.

The friends visit Barthen and purchase supplies for their trip, including some trail rations (Quinn purchases a huge bag!), three horses (a strong-willed horse named blackie; a paint that is good for hauling, and a well-behaved chestnut) as well as a wagon. Saffron insists on putting hay in the wagon so she is more comfortable and Rhys joins her. The friends set off for Old Owl Well which is to the east along the Triboar Trail.

They travel for three days and are not attacked, but they do hear animals in the distance. They arrive at Old Owl Well on the fourth day and it is quiet here. They see the ruins of a tower (really just a stump) and a tent. They approach the tent and announce themselves. A man with a shaved head and a tattoo on his forehead comes out and introduces himself as Hamun Kost. He says that he moved here to “get away and find peace” and when asked about undead, he says that he’s been here for six months and hasn’t seen any. Nylian notices that the tattoo on his head is a necromantic symbol so he is skeptical. Kost says that he could use some help with a few other things — there are orcs near Wyvern Tor that have been scouting toward the Well and he is concerned about them. Also, he says that there is a banshee at Conyberry who may know the name of the mage who built the tower here at the Well, he would like to know this information. The friends are non-committal and decide to leave. He goes back inside his tent.

Nylian tells the others that he recognizes the necromantic symbol and that this man is likely an evil mage. They decide to attack him. Quinn asks if he wants to buy anything from them, but the man declines. Quinn whispers “Brunig, attack now!” a little too loudly and Kost hears him and moves to attack. Quinn hits him but he teleports away and calls for his “friends” to help. Brunig strikes him down but several zombies shamble out of the ruins of the tower and attack. After a moment, several more come out, totaling twelve!

Session 10 – The Redbrand Hideout

After defeating the skeletons, the friends continue to the next room and defeat two more Redbrands. They are holding a woman and her two children hostage and the friends break them out.

The woman is thankful and says that her husband was killed by the Redbrands a week ago and they’ve kept her and her children captive since then. The friends let her know that they found his body in the crevasse. She has nothing to offer them but says that if they go to the ruins of Thundertree, her family had an herb and alchemy shop there and a family heirloom may still be there. It is an emerald necklace. The shop was on the southeast side of town.

Looking down a nearby hallway, Quinn and Nylian spring a pit trap but don’t fall in. They try to jump to the other side and fall in anyway. They see that this is the cistern where they entered so they have looked through all of the rooms on this side of the hideout. They decide to go back to the west side and clear out the rest of the Redbrands.

Droop and the family follow behind at a distance as the friends open the door to the guard room. Rhys comes forward and says “Hello gentlemen,” playing a loud note on his instrument. It blasts them back and knocks one of them out. The other three are knocked unconscious quickly as well. Some treasure is found in this room.

It’s determined that the friends have looked everywhere in this place, so they head back to Phandalin for a good night’s rest. The next morning they go to the townmaster’s hall and meet Harbin Wester, a large man who seems self-important. He is surprised to find out that the friends already drove off the Redbrands and is very impressed. Sildar comes into the room and is also happy, awarding the group with 200 gold pieces. Quinn tells them about the letter that was found, and after reading it Sildar says that Iarno must have turned to evil, but he doesn’t know who signed the letter with a black spider. He wants Iarno to be taken back to Neverwinter to stand for his crimes. He says if the party finds Cragmaw Castle and Gundren along with his map, he will give them 500gp.

Leads:

  • The ruins of Thundertree may have a valuable necklace in a building in the southeast side.
  • Sildar said he would pay the group 500gp if they found Cragmaw Castle, Gundren, and the map to Wave Echo Cave.
    • If they are looking for the location of Cragmaw Castle, in town they are pointed to Alderleaf Farm as the owner “knows everyone around here.”
  • The Edermath Orchard is run by someone who used to be an adventurer.

In town, the group sells the eye patch, wizard’s ingredients, 3 platinum rings, 5 gems, more gems, 2 gems, gold earring for a total of 475 gold.

That brings the group’s coffers to 287gp per member (added in DDB).

900xp – level 3

 

Session 9 – The Redbrand Hideout

Brunig takes the longsword and studies it. He remembers a warrior known as the Black Hawk who died fighting off the orcs that attacked through hidden caverns below his manor. His sword Talon must have been lost here and the nothic kept it. Brunig takes the sword to use.

The friends head through the west corridor and there is a room to the left and a hallway to the right. Brunig throws the door open and there are three bugbears here taunting a small goblin. The goblin passes out cold on the floor when he sees the warriors enter. A fight ensues and the bugbears are defeated, but the friends are badly wounded. They opt to rest here for a while to regain strength. As they begin to stir again, the goblin wakes up and says that his name is Droop. He’s afraid that the friends will hurt him, but they say that they came to save him and he seems happier. Droop says that he knows his way around the hideout and that a wizard is here who bosses around the men in red cloaks.

Nylian checks the room and the bugbears, and they have some treasure and an iron key. Droop says that the key will open all of the doors in the hideout.

The friends decide what to do next and Droop says that there is a room with Redbrands across the hall, this is where they normally congregate. The friends ask if they could get around that room and go to where the wizard is, and Droop leads them back through the crevasse room and then north.

The door to the wizard’s study is locked, but the key opens it. A rat scurries under the table as the friends enter. They check around and see lots of alchemical supplies and papers. They take some of the supplies and also a book in dwarvish that they can’t read.

In the next room they see a bed chamber and desk. Some valuables are found here and also a secret door that leads to another room. It was slightly open, which may mean that someone just escaped quickly.

Through the secret door, there is another corridor and a supply room. Next to this is an armory. Nothing much is found here.

To the south of the armory is a room with three sarcophagi and some dusty skeletons. As soon as the friends enter, the skeletons animate and attack them! After the skeletons are dealt with, the friends search the crypt and find three platinum rings.

+238xp, total 850xp

Session 8 – The Redbrand Hideout

The friends come out of the Sleeping Giant having beaten several of the Redbrand ruffians as the last one runs away on the road toward the east. The friends see a large golden dragonborn man with a staff and sword on his side across the street. He says that he is Brunig the Champion, a gladiator who just came to Phandalin a short while ago.

Quinn asks if Brunig would like to come along with them to explore where the Redbrand ran off to, and he agrees, seemingly eager for adventure. The friends and their new companion head up the hill to the old manor house and see lots of tracks heading toward the cellar. The house itself is a total wreck and most of it is open to the elements.

Pushing inside the cellar they see a room with supplies and a cistern here. Finding nothing of interest they check an adjacent room and there are three Redbrands resting here. A fight ensues and the Redbrands are defeated, but Rhys is knocked unconscious. The friends find some gold pieces on them but little else. They help Rhys regain consciousness and rest here to recover for a while.

Moving back into the cistern room, Rhys sees a rope going down into the water. Pulling on it, they find a stash in a waterproof bag with many more gold pieces, some jewels, healing potions and adventuring clothes. Rhys is so excited about the find that he falls backwards and pushes into a secret door that slides open. The friends decide to check it out.

This is a large, dank room with bridges across a crevasse. As they move through this room they start to hear strange whispers in their heads, but they fade quickly. As they cross the bridge they see a strange creature with a huge green eye behind a rock. It tells them that they should leave, they are not welcome here. Brunig says that he should not be trying to read their thoughts, and it replies that they are trespassing so it’s no different for him to trespass.

The friends start to attack the thing, Quinn hitting with his crossbow and Brunig lashing out with fireballs. Rhys strums a blast from his lute but does not have much effect. Quinn advances on the thing to strike it with his sword but it slashes him with its claws. Rhys runs to help his friend, hitting the thing with his rapier but only barely. Finally Quinn hits the thing solidly with his sword and it goes down.

Searching around the room, Quinn finds a chest underneath one of the bridges that holds a bunch of gold, more jewels, potions and an extremely nice longsword. It has a silver scabbard emblazoned with the image of a bird with outstretched wings, and has the word “Talon” on it.

+187xp, total 612xp

Session 7 – Phandalin

The friends finally head into Phandalin. As they arrive, they see forty or so simple log buildings, surrounded by old ruins with crumbling walls covered by ivy and briars, showing that this must have been a much larger town in centuries past. Far away on the east side of town they see a ruined manor house on a hill. Children are playing on the town green and townsfolk are tending to chores and running errands at shops. Many people look up as they approach but return to their business as they go by. 

Sildar suggests that they seek lodging at the local inn. Tomorrow he wants to search for signs of the missing wizard, Iarno Albrek, who is also a member of the Lord’s Alliance and disappeared two months after coming to Phandalin. Also, he thinks that someone in Phandalin may know the location of Cragmaw Castle, where the goblins may have taken Gundren Rockseeker and the map of the secret entrance to the long-lost Wave Echo Cave. Perhaps they could also figure out who the Black Spider is, the person that ordered the goblins to attack Gundren.

The friends visit Barthen’s Provisions first and meet Barthen. He pays them 10 gold apiece for returning his supplies. He also lets them know the following:

  • He knew Gundren and feels sad that he was kidnapped. He hopes that the group finds him.
  • There are two more Rockseeker brothers, Nundro and Tharden, and they are most likely camped outside of town. They have not been seen for ten days but should be back to the town soon to resupply. They may know more about the cave or where their brother is.
  • The other supplies that they have belong to the Lionshead Coster. They would probably reward the friends for returning the supplies.
  • There are ruffians in town called the Redbrands. They are stealing things and making life hard here. They are typically found at the Sleeping Giant.
  • The Stonehill Inn is a good place to stay for the night and there are a lot of people in their taproom that you could talk to and get more info about the area.
  • The Edermath Orchard is occupied by someone who used to be an adventurer.

The friends visit the Lionshead Coster and Linene Graywind is not sure about them at first but when Quinn says that he has her stolen goods and that goblins took them, she is very appreciative and gives them 50 gold. She says that she will help the group any way she can, and that she has some weapons and armor available. She says that the Redbrands are causing trouble here.

They head to the inn and get a room and dinner. They learn the following:

  • The townmaster is looking for people to fend off the orks that are attacking people on the Triboar trail east of here.
  • Sister Garele from the Shrine of Luck left town for a few days and returned wounded.
  • The Redbrands murdered Thel Dendrar, a local woodcarver, and kidnapped his wife and children.

The friends decide to confront the Redbrands at the Sleeping Giant. They walk in and there are four ruffians sitting at the front. They call the friends “puppies” but Nylian calls them “fat poop heads” to which they are very angry about. They immediately get up and start attacking the friends but the battle is quick and three of them are knocked out. The fourth goes running for the east side of town. The friends check the other Redbrands for treasure before continuing on after him.

+100xp, total 425xp

Session 6 – The Lost Mine

Two months later, Quinn, Rhys, Nylian and Saffron start on the job they were hired for in Neverwinter by Gundren and Sildar. They take the dwarf’s supplies south on the main road and then travel east for half a day on the Triboar Trail.

At midday, they come across a grisly scene in the road. Two horses have been slain and have black-fletched arrows in them from the battle. The saddlebags have been looted and there is an empty map case nearby. The heroes recognize the horses — they belong to Gundren and Sildar!

Suddenly goblins attack from both sides, two of them with swords and two with short bows. During the battle both Quinn and Nylian are knocked down and almost die, but Rhys is able to heal Nylian and Nylian heals Quinn. The goblins are finally defeated and the group takes a bit of a rest.

Searching the area, the heroes aren’t able to find anything of value but do see a secret path that leads northeast from here. Rhys volunteers to stay behind with the oxcart while the others check it out.

Nylian is scouting for the group and stays several steps ahead. A few minutes along the path, he spies a foot trap and avoids it. A few minutes after this, he steps into a pit trap but manages to roll to the side before falling completely through.

Finally, the group comes upon the mouth of a large cave covered by brush with a small stream running into it.

+75 xp

It’s decided that the group will need Rhys for support if they want to delve into the cave, so Quinn runs back five miles and gets him, returning with him a while later, both of them huffing and puffing. The group splashes across the stream and moves toward the path at the cave mouth. Suddenly to their right they see a small blind where sentries can sit, and they find two lazy goblins. They are easily defeated and the group moves into the cave.

The cave goes on for a ways forward, but there is an opening to the right. Looking and listening carefully at the entrance, Nylian smells animals and hears the sounds of panting. He warns the rest of the group and they slowly move in. Three wolves are chained up at the entrance and begin lunging toward the group. Nylian tries unsuccessfully to calm them, but Quinn pulls out some of his trail rations and the wolves calm down, quickly eating the rations and letting the group pass.

There is nothing else here except a chimney that extends upward from the back of the room, with a bunch of trash underneath. The heroes decide to try and ascend the chimney which they all do without difficulty, even Rhys.

In the upper room, the heroes see a few goblins as well as a huge bugbear with what appears to be a pet wolf sitting around a fire. There are boxes of supplies here and other items strewn around the room. The heroes try to approach quietly, but the bugbear notices them and pulls out his sword and moves to attack. “Who dares to attack Klarg??” the bugbear roars.

Nylian and Quinn fire arrows at the beast which wound him, but he still rushes forward. Suddenly he stops as haunting music fills his head that only he can hear. Rhys has begun playing a song that is meant to drive him mad. All he can hear is “You are going to die!” After yelling in pain and holding his head, Klarg falls down, actually quite dead. The heroes are astonished and so are the other goblins, and the latter are quickly dispatched.

After taking stock of the supplies in the room and searching the creatures, the heroes realize that they’ll need to transport all of this stuff somehow. It will have to fit on the oxcart. They move to the next area.

In the next room there are a few goblins guarding two large pools of water. It looks like the water is retained here and can be released at any time to wash away invaders into the cave. Moving on, the heroes cross a bridge where another goblin is hiding.

Finally, the heroes reach a large room that is split into two sections, a lower and a higher area. They come into the lower area where six goblins are cooking something, and the higher area is only accessible by a ladder that reaches over ten feet above. They start fighting the goblins here, but on the high platform a goblin who appears to be a leader drags a human man who is quite badly beaten to the edge. “Stop fighting now, or I drop this human to the ground!” he yells. Quinn thinks for a moment but agrees and drops his sword. The goblins also notice that he has a crossbow and he drops this as well.

The goblin leader says that his name is Yeemik, and he would like the heroes to kill Klarg and bring his head to him. If they do this, he will set the human free. The man in Yeemik’s clutches tells the heroes not to go along with this, as the goblin will betray them. The heroes announce that Klarg is already dead to which Yeemik is very excited. Quinn and Saffron go back and retrieve Klarg and bring him into the room. Yeemik is even more excited and says that he will give the human over if they pay him 300 gold. Quinn pulls out some of the diamonds (three) he had gotten from a previous adventure and says that each one is 100 gold. This was a lie, however, as their value was less than half that. However, Yeemik and the others are ecstatic and take the gems, fleeing the room and leaving the heroes alone.

The heroes check the room, which has some food but not much else. They heal the human who identifies himself as Sildar Hallwinter, a member of the Lord’s Alliance. He explains that the Rockseeker brothers (Gundren, Tharden, and Nundro) recently located an entrance to the long-lost Wave Echo Cave, site of the mines of the Phandelver’s Pact, and tells them more about the history of the cave. Klarg, the bugbear who leads this goblin band, had orders to waylay Gundren. Sildar heard from the goblins that the Black Spider sent word that the dwarf was to be brought to him, but he doesn’t know who that is.

Gundren had a map showing the secret location of Wave Echo Cave, but the goblins took it when they captured him. Sildar believes that Klarg sent the map and the dwarf to the chief of the Cragmaws at a place called Cragmaw Castle. Sildar doesn’t know where that might be, but he suggests someone in Phandalin might know.

Sildar’s contact in Phandalin is a human wizard named Iarno Albrek. The wizard traveled to the town two months ago to establish order there. After the Lords’ Alliance received no word from Iarno, Sildar decided to investigate.

Sildar tells the characters that he intends to continue on to Phandalin, since it’s the nearest settlement. He offers to pay the party 50 gold to provide escort. Although he has no money on him, he says that he can secure a loan to pay the characters within a day after arriving in Phandalin.

The heroes rest up, and then go back to Klarg’s room where Yeemik and the others are. They beat up Yeemik and take back the diamonds. Then they pack up the supplies they found here (marked with a crest) as well as the other gear, and load the oxcart for Phandalin.

+275 xp, total 325 xp. Level 2.

Session 5 – Midra

The heroes wake up after a night healing while staying at the blacksmith’s shop, on the floor in the back room. Azolla comes into town looking for Nylian because he didn’t return the night before. The friends explain what happened and that they weren’t able to stop the bandits from attacking the town.

Azolla says that she will stay and help them, and they start formulating a plan. They will talk to the people in town and see if they will assist in fighting the bandits, and they can all drive them out with superior numbers the next day.

The friends talk to the blacksmith, Ben, and he agrees to lend out weapons from his shop, but he doesn’t have much left. He also tells them that the mayor is corrupt but the moral center of the town is actually the priest who is at the chapel down the street. He fought in a war and may be helpful to bring the other townspeople in.

Speaking with the priest, he agrees to make a speech to the town that afternoon and try to bring everyone together. He suggests recruiting townspeople in the meantime and telling them about the meeting. The farmer nearby has three strong sons who may help in the fighting.

The group spends the rest of the early part of the day talking with townspeople and getting them to agree to come to the town square in the afternoon. Most agree, including the farmer’s sons, after Azolla convinces them that after the bandits bleed the town dry, they will attack the nearby farms next. In the afternoon the priest gives a speech and tries to convince everyone to fight back and help the heroes drive them out. He offers his sword, which is old but still sharp, to one of the farmer’s sons. Most are excited to get them out of town, but about ten people just want to be left alone and head back to their homes. About fifty people total will help.

That evening, Rhys helps the owner of the tavern mix rum into the ale so the bandits get more intoxicated. They will then attack tomorrow morning when they are all passed out and drive them out of town.

The bandit attack happens as expected that evening and more things are stolen. A couple of people were wounded in the conflict but no one died. The town, including the heroes, rest up before the attack in the morning.

The heroes wake up early and lead the townspeople who have borrowed weapons and farm implements to the west side of town where the bandit camp is. They are all predictably passed out, even more so since their ale was mixed with rum. The heroes tie some of them up, but Nylian wakes two of them and they jump up to attack. Even unarmed they are still dangerous and take a few minutes to defeat.

Seeing the heroes’ success, the townspeople rally and move into the camp, beating up the bandits and sending them on the road away from town, telling them never to come back. After this they come back to town and pull the mayor from his home, sending him packing wearing only his underwear.

The heroes are able to recover over 200 gold pieces from the bandit’s tents, which they return to the people in the village. They are so thankful that they pay each hero 15 gold pieces, and say they will be welcomed back warmly if they ever return.

The heroes leave for other adventures, and Rhys writes a song to commemorate their heroics in the town. The others realize that every time he retells the story, more bandits are added or the situation becomes more dangerous. Eventually, Rhys boasts that they were fighting against orcs, and Quinn slew eight of them with one swipe from his sword.

Session 4 – Midra

Quinn, Rhys, the miner and their new friend Nylian head toward the town of Midra. Nylian leads them easily through the woods as he is very familiar with the area.

They arrive a while later at Midra and see that it’s a small town with only a few buildings. There is a blacksmith, an inn, a general store, a very small tavern and a church but not much else. The friends decide to go to the blacksmith first, and the man seems very worried that they are going to rob him. When they introduce themselves and appear friendly, he relaxes. The villager, whose name is Ben, also vouches for them.

Nylian asks if the man has anything for sale here, but he says that he doesn’t because every time he has a lot of goods, the bandits come into town and steal everything. He doesn’t have much money and never keeps stock, he just builds whatever is commissioned and delivers it quickly.

When asked more about the bandits, he says that there are more than twenty of them are at a camp about a mile outside of town to the west, and they often come through the town around dinnertime and raze it. They steal, break things and then head back to their camp afterward and party long into the night, then pass out from drunkenness. They repeat the process almost every night.

The friends decide that the way to attack the bandits is when they are passed out in the middle of the night. Quinn and Nylian have the blacksmith sharpen their swords which he charges 5 gold apiece for, and then they decide to make camp outside the town before the bandit attack.

Ben thanks them again for their help and goes home. Nylian and Rhys head out of town with the supplies and set up camp with a few tents and bedrolls. Meanwhile, Quinn goes to the tavern and asks for some soup. The proprietor is very happy to have business and orders up his serving girl to get a small cauldron of soup for them. Quinn carries it to the camp and they have dinner.

A couple of hours later, they hear noise from the town as the bandits have arrived. They decide to sneak up and see what is going on, hanging back toward the woods and behind the blacksmith shop. Unfortunately one of the bandits sees them and four come running through the alley to attack.

Nylian creates a cloud of fog over them, but they rush through it and strike. Rhys decides to be a hero and runs forward, throwing his dagger with no effect. Quinn attacks and takes out one of them and wounds another, but he is beaten down by the men’s swords and falls. Nylian is able to take out the remaining two and heals Rhys, then Quinn but only barely. He drags them back to the camp so they can heal up.

Session 3 – Midra

The friends help untie the villager and decide what to do next. Not accustomed to leadership, Quinn second guesses himself. Rhys suggests that they head to Midra and take the villager with them. They decide to leave the unconscious bandits where they are.

Quinn rides his horse and the villager and Rhys share a horse on the way to Midra. A few miles down the road, they hear the clash of swords coming from somewhere off the road. They tie their horses up and have the villager watch them so they can explore.

Venturing slowly into the forest, they see a group of six bandits attacking two elves, one female with short dark hair and a male with long, fair hair. The elves are using some kind of magic to defend themselves. Quinn and Rhys decide to intervene and start attacking the bandits. After several minutes of Quinn swinging his sword, Rhys attacking with his rapier, and the two elves using magic and weapons, all of the bandits finally go down.

The elf woman introduces herself as Noxsa, a head druid from a nearby forest grove just outside Midra. She says that they are generally peaceful, but the bandit problem has gotten worse over the past few months and they’ve had to defend themselves many times.

Quinn explains that he and Rhys have come to help deal with the bandits, and Noxsa looks delighted. She says that it would be a great help to the grove if they had help. She introduces her companion Nylian Tallmeadow, the fair-haired elf who wields a shortbow and sword.

Rhys and Quinn are happy to have another person to help, and greet Nylian gladly. He seems eager as well. The trio head back to the horses to plan their next move.