And so the Great Farce begins.
Mayor Uptal has given a rousing yet somber soliloquy to the town, and I, along with a few others, have stepped forward. With little more than a supply pack and some “so brave” looks to us, we venture forth.
Eldon, janitor of the Crooked Tower, was the first to come forth. He seems, at best, unsure of himself. I don’t believe he has it in him to act nearly this convincing, so I am inclined to consider his fears real.
The short nymphognomiac has volunteered his services as well and has insisted on bringing the pygmy dinosaur with him as well.
A respectable ranger, Mak, has come out to guide this mockery of an adventure. Hopefully he can at least follow the trail well enough to keep us from becoming completely lost.
Well, I most assuredly do not understand magic, but I believe I have seen it at work! We were attacked, by a small number of orcs. This must have been one of our “challenges” set up for us. They fought rather poorly, and though one slashed right through Mak’s body, I saw no mark upon his body. He found it quite painful, though, and the bodies seemed to fade from sight as soon as our “fight” was over. Perhaps magic DOES actually have some uses.
Wolves disturbed us during the night. As we prepared to bed down, Fargin and Eldon were bickering like an old married couple when I noticed eyes fixed on me in the darkness. After a period of observing these orbs of light in the darkness, I let fly a dart directly into it. The yelping and sounds of scurrying about in the brush spelled the end of that animal, or so I thought.
The young lovers continued their fighting amongst themselves with barely a break to ask what had happened, and so covered the sounds of the wolves coming back, this time three of them. The battle was quick, but more importantly, a discovery was made: Eldon really DOES command some magic! Though he will likely never hear such words escape MY lips… I was impressed! An orb of light flew from his hand and snaked its was into the body of one of the canines. Very interesting…
As a side note, the wolves seemed quite hungry, kind of odd considering the vast supply of game within this lush forest. This was probably just another test for us.
We reached Gray Lake to find a beautiful, pure lake of water with a dead man laying next to it. He has been deceased for some time, and he had some coins and a nice sword with him. Mak is currently utilizing the sword, with the promise that he will teach me more about using it. If we should happen across someone who knows the dead man, unlikely at best, we should ask if someone related to him may need the sword more than we do. Or the coins, for that matter. The coins were from Kamran, but I did not recognize him.
Goodness, this slope will be difficult to traverse with this much rain. Fortunately, we have a vast supply of rope between the four of us, and will descend it using that.
Mak had a pretty serious accident coming down here, twisting up his ankle quite badly. Eldon took a little tumble but managed to use his magic to glide down the slope moving with only his staff. I had no real concerns for myself, but was impressed by the intelligence displayed by Fargin’s “little buddy”, the one he calls Feng. The thing figured out how to grab onto the rope with its claw, though when it inevitably fell, it damned near bit through the rope trying to save itself. If I had fallen because of that, I would have been less than pleased.
Things are not as simple as they once seemed… We approached the crypt to find some of Mayor Uptal’s horses slain at the entrance. To find such a vast fortune killed and discarded is disconcerting, to say the least. Inside, the dead arose to fight use, their vicious skeletal hands grasping, their swords swinging, the evil in their glowing eyes promising us certain doom. We defeated them quickly enough, though not unscathed, as I was struck twice myself. I have found that I seem to have a knack for melee combat, however, as I waded through the enemies quite quickly.
We found the cobbler Roldare holed up in a room in this crypt. He is nigh on madness, but provided us with some valuable information:
It seems that he and some of Mayor Uptal’s men were sent here to make this adventure easier on us (this is no surprise, given what we had heard). However, upon coming back into the crypt, they were set upon and Roldare made his way into this room.
Roldare has made multiple references to a walking dead that speaks. Thus far, I have heard none of the skeletal people speak at all, so this makes me wonder what else we may see. He seemed to think that we were this creature attempting to trick him, so it presumably has some intelligence. To put it in perspective, however, he is fast becoming a madman, if not already there. Every word from his mouth must be taken with a grain of salt.
That leaves the fact, however, that his words must have at least SOME basis in truth…