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Roywyn’s Journal

Mirtul 29, Kryptgarden Forest

I think we thwarted some evil drow followers of Vhaeraun on their way to cause problems for Eilistraee’s worshipers. Well, I don’t really know that for sure, but it is the night of a full moon, and I recall seeing those drow dance under a full moon, and even learned a song from them once, years ago.

But, I am getting ahead of myself! Let me go back to last night. We were returning from Kryptgarden Forest, having not found the werewolf we thought we were looking for. Suddenly, I noticed that Rookinoniak looked very much like an upright wolf, though he was still talking surprisingly fast and in his normal gnomish voice. No one was willing to draw his blood to make sure, but Kor’tac did knock him out with his axe at least. The gnome stayed in his wolf-shape, though the quiet was blissful.

We could not get him into the local temple to be “fixed” and the Frost Touched Frog was darkened for the night— we went in to the room Windy and I had acquired earlier, putting the wolf-gnome in a net attached to the ceiling. I wanted to see if he would react badly to silver, so borrowed some coins and placed them on his exposed skin. At that point, I realized Windy’s illusion spells are much better than I thought, and though I know realized he’d cast an illusion of a wolf over the talkative gnome, Seren was now convinced that the silver coins were burning Rookinoniak and wanted to stab him a few times with a silver dagger. Perhaps the warning look I gave Windy tipped her off, or caused him to break his concentration, but the wolf-gnome now just looked like a gnome to everyone. At least he was still quiet.

Now that I think on it, this isn’t the first time I’ve seen a male gnome that I was just getting to know turn into a hideous monster— hmmm... I wonder. Oh well.

In the morning, we found the halfling’s room (he was staying in the same inn). Windy and I found out that he had tried to sell a treasure map to our three traveling companions, who had chosen to go looking for a werewolf rather than fortune. It also turns out that the halfling, one Dalabrac Merrymar, was only bitten by a regular wolf, and hadn’t actually said anything about werewolves— Kor’tac is looking for one and made a leap of logic on that one. However, the wounded halfling wanted 1000 gp for the map— we didn’t have that kind of gold handy. Windy offered him 250 gp, healing, and 10% of whatever we found at the destination of the map. Dalabrac agreed and went to get a contract written up. While he did that, Windy and I went to the market and sold 15 of the nets from the night before. We got a tidy sum— 2400 gp for them. We kept half and split the other half with our three companions. We also bought four of us saps, in case Rookinoniak woke up talking. I tried to buy a few silence spells at first, but the saps were much cheaper and probably more effective anyway.

We met back at the inn, handed out shares of the gold, signed the contract, and paid and healed the halfling. He gave us the map, and we went to find a table to spread it out on. The map showed five circles, four around a larger one, in the northern part of Kryptgarden Forest. Oddly, Kor’tac was the only one that could read the words written at the bottom— something to the effect of: “By the light of the moon at its fullest, the path shall be opened.” Tonight was a full moon! We figured it would take us about ten hours to get to the part of the forest the map depicted, so we departed immediately.

We made pretty good time, and had almost reached our destination, when a dozen dark-skinned elves appeared in front of us. Before we could determine if the drow were friend or foe, Seren went into a fury and started shooting her bow at them, killing one outright.

I tried to slow down the eventual clash of the two parties by creating an illusion of a portal opening between the groups. It caused the drow to walk around it, dividing them into two smaller groups, but they were still bent on attacking us. As my comrades attacked with ranged weapons, I had tentacles come out of the portal, causing some of the drow to act as if they were entangled. Unfortunately, they had magic users among them, one of which cast a web spell that entangled Kor’tac and the talkative gnome. I was in the middle of the spell myself, but managed to keep from getting caught in the stickiness.

I still didn’t know who these drow were, and since we attacked first, had no way of knowing if they were a group of good drow out to perform a moonlight ritual for Eilistraee, or something more sinister. To find out (and provide some encouragement to my friends), I chose to sing that song I overheard during a ritual to the good drow goddess. Wow, did that make these drow angry! Six arrows whizzed past me, but none hit. I decided I’d better start shooting back. Seren and Windy were out of my view, but the orc was providing me with a lot of cover on one side as he struggled to get out of the webbing. I then realized that Rookinoniak had ceased talking. It took me a moment or two to realize that meant that he was unconscious. I turned to see his prone form bleeding a few feet from me, but he was entangled in web and I could not break through it to get to him! I saw him breathe his last, and then I had to turn back to the battle, lest someone else be mortally wounded as well. I was able to kill a few of the drow myself, and once Kor’tac got out of the web, he finished off what we smaller folk had not. All in all, we slew ten of the nasty creatures.

I am not sure what we are to do with the dead gnome. Our only consolation is that at least he didn’t die alone, but we could have been kinder to him (well, we could have tried to listen to his constant prattle, at least). We took some of the weaponry and protective gear he carried, and then set about piling the drow up in what I can only assume would be an embarrassing fashion to them. Perhaps anyone that passes by this place will think the little red-haired gnome finished them off.

Posted by Kristin on August 9, 2006, 22:24 | Roywyn’s Journal