Reeling from the loss of roughly one third of the Investigative Unit, the remnants of the Party in Lnonven had buried their dead and pressed onward to Cunvden in the hopes of recruiting replacements. As the governing seat of the fief of Duke Marren Ilthan, the small town of Cunvden once held prominence and prestige. Its near desertion in the aftermath of the tsunami from the Voldor Bay has left it a broken ruin of a settlement, barely classifiable as a village.
Diaday, Fifteenth of Declarations, 1044 Y.K.
Set to connect with Cunvden’s watch commander Captain Birorn regarding honorable and trustworthy men to employ, Stoat, Maldus and Brendolm rose after a restless night at the “Hopping Sailor” and made their way to the town’s center – one of the few places in good repair. As promised, the Captain was there, and informed the group that he had a number of mercenaries in his employ, some of whom with contracts about to expire. He bid the group return a few hours later and he would introduce them to the men when they assembled for role call.
Brendolm elected to wait and take in the sun while the others returned to the inn and devoured a meal prepared by Malmir the cook. Two familiar figures soon approached, and the human-turned-halfling stood and waved to them. They did not recognize his new form, but he knew them well. Gram and Hilg had arrived, and were surprised to see the new body of their friend and teammate, but happy all the same. The entirety of the remaining investigators were reunited at last and found renewed strength in each others’ company.
The time of the role call soon arrived and the investigators found themselves inspecting the men under the Captain’s command. Two in particular, the tall and brawny Kalamaran Relmir Dilomas, and the heavily scarred Zeph Proctor were most impressive and proved amicable to a working relationship in the prince’s name. In the meantime, the pair’s final mission for Captain Birorn was at hand – a mission that had room for additional manpower.
Eager to see the pair of warriors in action, …and make a little bit of money in the process, the investigative unit joined the Captain’s forces and set a trap for the thieves who had been looting the ruins of homes belonging to wealthy members of Cunvden’s population prior to the tidal wave. The thieves, rallied under the name “Night’s Shadow”, deferred to the criminal Ichrinthan Stroon – the ultimate target of the Captain’s efforts.
With Captain Birorn discussing the finer points of a position with some of his other soldiers, another ‘employer’ made her rounds and encountered the Party. The wealthy Sarenva Blord attempted to hire the Group to track one of Stroon’s men to the “Shadow’s” lair in order to retrieve personal items for her. This however, would require the escape of one of the men, exactly what the Captain was paying the Party not to allow. Brendolm issued a stern rejection and the heiress left to resume her business, stating that the offer remained if he should change his mind.
In the interim, Stoat made inquiries as to archers of note or renown in the kingdom. The legend of the Minel Flashfire bow was mentioned, much to Brendolm’s chagrin. But the real story of interest was of Hanadrel Rolendar, said to be a Ranger of unmatched skill. According to the story, she was part of the adventuring band containing Argenon Remel – previous owner of Dokari’s Crystal Ball. In all the group was Hanadrel the Ranger, Argenon the Wizard, Kovayl the Fhokki Fighter, Gonjeyla Sarazi the Gnomish Cleric and Lombord Talrek the Dwarven Rogue.
The story was cut off then, as Captain Birorn called for the troupe to move out. They made their way into the ruined upscale district. A perimeter was Formed around the latest target house of Stroon and his thieves, and the Party hid themselves and lay in wait. Movement was soon spotted and the villains found themselves under attack. Though the battle went decisively in the favor of the Party and Captain Birorn’s men, one thief escaped, slipping away past a momentarily distracted Hilg.
With the bulk of the thieves captured, the Group returned to the town’s center and the Party received payment for the night’s work. Brendolm made arrangements for a rider to take his payment to Lnonven on his behalf – his debt to the church now paid in full. For their part, Relmir and Zeph had been impressive in battle, even risking life and limb in the engagement. They were welcomed to the Investigative Unit in an official capacity.
Pelsday, Sixteenth of Declarations, 1044 Y.K.
With their contract to the Captain now completed, the Party revisited Sarenva Blord with regards to her previous offer. The escaped thief offered the opportunity to track him and search for the lair, and the Group was no longer in the employ of the Captain, so her offer was no longer counter to their mission. Her desire to retrieve the stolen items remained, despite the earlier rejection. As such, a deal was struck and the Party was once again on the trail of Ichrinthan Stroon.
As the Group made preparations to follow the tracks, Brendolm revealed a new addition to the Group. Longing to once again possess the benefits of Bardic Music, he hired Cosdrelita the Bard to travel with them. An aspiring adventurer, the woman was excited about going and went without complaint. The cave was soon found and the Investigative Unit entered cautiously. Gram lead the way, and took a beating at the hands of numerous minor traps that guarded the cavern’s entrance.
Inside, the remainder of the thieves were discovered and the Party went about its work. It was a tough battle, nearly costing the life of Relmir to the daggers of the “Night’s Shadow” Rogues, but when all was said and done, the cave had been cleared and Ichrinthan Stroon was in custody. The return to Cunvden proved a lucrative one, as the Party was given both the reward money for Stroon’s capture, and the personal reward of Sarenva Blord for the return of her items.
Katarday, Seventeenth of Declarations, 1044 Y.K.
Now possessing the monetary means to afford upgraded equipment, the Party chartered passage with Captain Rantron Alon aboard the vessel “His Majesty’s Audacious” and sailed back to Cosolen to resupply. The long day of sailing ended with a happy return to the capital at nightfall.
Fireday, Eighteenth of Declarations, 1044 Y.K.
Flush with cash and in the familiar surroundings of the Cosolen streets and markets, the Party went about purchasing equipment and visiting friends and family. The magical item broker Forberon proved a busy man, as the Group had much need of his services. All told, thirteen minor magical items were purchased, and enchants were placed onto two others. The Investigative Unit had begun making the transition into heroes.
Stoat took the opportunity to stop in and visit Plenthal Levnis while he was in town. The alchemist identified the type of poison taken from the “Night’s Shadow” thieves. Brendolm took time to return to the Minel farmstead and check on the progress of the summer season. He found that all was well, and the Paladin Grandon Minguld had thus far lived up to his word. Relmir stopped into the local Temple of Armed Conflict and made a hefty donation of 1000 gold coins.
Also during the day, Stoat took up a collection from amongst the Party to hire men of skilled labor from amongst the refugees in Eastpeg to form a work detail to establish a presence in Cunvden and help in the rebuilding efforts. A total of 700 gold pieces was gathered and a number of workers were interviewed and sorted through. The payment was handed over and the group’s leader was instructed to use the money to purchase supplies and passage to the town. It would still take some time for the initiative to get underway, but it was a valuable step toward rebuilding the broken lands.
As the sun set, the Group found comfort in the beds within the capital’s walls. Their return voyage aboard the “Audacious” was to depart at first light, and from Cunvden they were only a day’s hard ride away from Itven, the location of their primary mission for His Highness Prince Sevlen.