Champions of the Nentir Vale

New faces, downtime, and Wizard's Chess

Session 3

* Exxidion earned the nickname “Cowboy” due to his penchant for horses and rope tricks… ;) After coming to the conclusion that the horse might be a liability in the close quarters of the temple complex, Exxidion decided to tie the horse up right outside of the entrance. When he returned to check on the horse, it was gone.
* Gingo really showed how valuable a cleric warpriest is when the combat turns ugly.
* Rillian showed everyone the proper way to talk to monsters that could bloody you in one attack.
* Donaar and Soveliss were discovered by the rest of the party tied up by one of the temple entrances. The party freed them and allowed them to join. Eventually, they located their personal effects deeper within the temple complex.
* Eshanath and Iados holed up in a secure location in case the party needed to retreat to safety.

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Gingo's journal entry for 1/16/11

weeks ago, Travis, a merchanting dwarf, had been traveling the winding roads of this fallen empire and had an ornate box stolen by goblins and a shady black rider. weeks later our first adventure as a party went underway and a humanoid creature had shed some light on information we had desperately been seeking. By giving us intelligence on who the black rider was, we had faced him up close along with his platoon of the undead. We had easily overrun them with 7 people and discovering that inside the box was a skull for the vile practice of necromancy. Although this object we now posses leaves us with a mark that makes everyone we encounter think we are necromancers. All I know is that blood will drip from bodies tomorrow when our escape begins.

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Exxidion's Mind Ch. 1

I lie on the ground, resting for the next 6 hours and I find myself reviewing the events that took place over the past few days…

Traevis. The cart carrier. Kind enough to help me with my things on my way to Fallcrest… Goblins ambushed us and I was intimidating enough to scare them off, BUT they stole something… Ah yes. The box. Traevis asked me to find it but told me specifically not to look into it. He will give me 30 gold for the return of that box. I decided to track them alone as it would be more stealthy, but was overpowered and forced to flee. Oh, I can’t forget… The Black rider. He was riding a horse and seemed to be the leader of the goblins.

The quest. I returned to town to conveniently find a bar. Grabbed myself a beer and couldn’t help but hear an exchanging of words. “Oh yeah. Traevis took me here as well. He said he was looking for a box that some goblins stole. Said he’d pay 30 gold for the thing. 30 GOLD!”
“He told me the same thing! This must be pretty important…”
I walked over to the gambling table to be greeted by a party of adventurers. A fairly tall Elf cleric cloaked in white robes of holy stature who I now know as Gingo Uchari. Joined by a Human fighter. Strong, large, and wielding an impressive looking sword about his waist. His name is Eshanath. “Gentlemen, I can’t help but overhear your conversation and I believe that I could be of some service.” I introduced myself and my background on Traevis and this box. We formed an alliance known as “The Brethren” and set out to kill some goblins and retrieve this box.

The crossroads. On the way to the hideout the goblins were using, we were poorly ambushed by some goblins and what appeared to be their wolf friends. We easily managed to defeat them and treaded onward.

What will come next? Will we be greeted by more enemies? Will the cave even have the box? Sigh I guess only time can tell…

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Exxidion's Mind Ch. 2

Well, today was… today was really something…

The cave. At the entrance to this cave, we were joined by a tiefling mage named Iados. Joining him was a familiar looking elf. Seemed almost too familiar… “Rillian? Rillian Marks?” I called out.
“Exx? Brother?” He greeted his adopted halfling brother with a warm hug, lifting me off the ground. We exchanged stories and my long gone brother joined our party. We came to a split decision when entering the cave in which we were forced to make a choice: take the left entrance, or take the right entrance? Since left is best, I spoke for the party and we took the left. When entering, we encountered guards. My party made small talk while I was able to stealthily sneak behind one. They did not want us there and the brawl began. I flanked the first guard and stabbed him in the back. Our party quickly dispatched the guards and their reinforcements. After I thoroughly checked the whole place for traps, we moved onwards. After going through a couple rooms that don’t mean much to me, but obviously meant a lot to my new cleric friend, we took a 5 minute break and I investigated a hallway only to find a baby white dragon that breathes ice. I snuck back to my party to tell them the news. Rillian, being the arrogant person that he is, tried to sneak up on the dragon with his heavy, loud, not sneaky armor. He knocked down a curtain and I heard my brother curse in elven. “Who dares disturb The Great Faralon?” The dragon roared. Gingo Joined my brother while the three of us remaining snuck to an alternative entrance that I found in my little trip. We waited there for something to happen. Rillian and Gingo tried to speak to the dragon in a polite manner, but he was annoyed by this and found us three. He told us to no longer disturb him and we left with two party members getting frostbitten feet. Rillian, like always rushed up ahead and before I could inspect a suspicious looking carpet for traps, he alarmed one and just barely avoided it. Sadly, that alerted two monsters in the room and they attacked. With a sigh, I entered combat, gaining the first strike; I quickly threw a dagger at a goblin damaging him brutally. We managed to take them down. After going through many rooms and battling many creatures, we came to a room with some goblins and to our left was a horse who was leashed. Suddenly some goblins came and attacked us. Two of them charged towards us while one of them opened a door in the back of the room as an unidentifiable creature walked out. We handled the goblins and the creature and an invisible mage started casting spells on us. Thinking quickly, I pulled out my rope from my backpack that I had earlier tied into a lasso. Using the knot at the end to assist, I swung the rope in a large circle and managed to pinpoint the invisible mage. Quickly our whole party gathered around him and defeated him while he was near us. I went over to the horse and upon closer examination, I realized that this looks like the same horse the rider in black was on. He must be here. We then found a fountain that would give us our healing surges back if we drank its contents. After regaining our surges, we decided to fill our water skins with it. We walked into a room that we believe he came from. In the room was a circle that Iados informed us to be a magic circle that will protect us from fire. Nearby was an ever-burning torch that could cast fireballs if we were magical enough. We then took a rest for the night bringing me to where I am at now… I wonder where I can learn to become as stealthy as that mage… Who knows… For now, I rest.

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Exxidion's Mind Ch. 3

Today was probably the most heart pounding, life threatening day of my life… Let’s review.

The dream. During my rest, I had a dream that two of the rooms we walked through were different… Interestingly, my party had that same dream. We decided to investigate further after untying the ropes holding our doors together to keep out intruders. However when opening the doors, we found two large sacks moving about. We untied them and were greeted by two confused adventurers. An eladrin mage named Soveliss and a dragonborne slayer named some strange name that I couldn’t remember so I just referred to him as “hey idiot” as that would always manage to get his attention. Both of them were stripped of weapons and armor. We exchanged stories and they joined The Brethren. I took the horse that we saw last night and tied it up outside of the dungeon in case we needed a swift getaway. Eshanath and Iados stood guard in our room so we could return to it as a safe haven. Rillian and Soveliss went back to the dragon room to do something of little importance. I, however, had my own plans. I returned to the room with the trap carpet and came upon a realization that we had missed a pair of large wooden doors and that was what was different in my dream.

“something of little importance” (behind the scenes) Note that Exxidion had no idea and still has no idea that this happened Rillian and Soveliss went to the dragon room. Soveliss cast a spell to convince the dragon that he was a friend. The Dragon gave Soveliss darkleaf leather armor. They passed through double doors in the dragon room that they dreamt about, fought a goblin and found Soveliss and the dragonborne’s (Who’s real name is Donaar) armor and weapons.

The room of despair. Looking through the doors, I found an interesting design on the floor of a large room. Alternating squares changed color from light to dark and no two of the same colors were ever adjacent to each other. There were stone statues across the room. One seemed to resemble a female who was of royalty. Three resembled grunt soldiers. One resembled a knight on a horse. One was an elephant carrying a siege tower. The room seemed suspicious, so I investigated it for traps. After walking three square forward, I took my fourth step. That must have been the most painful step of my life for I felt that my foot was on fire, yet there were no flames. My foot was forced back into place and my body was being pulled to my left and my right. I decided to go to my right because I had hurt my left foot and it would be more painful to move in that direction. I was joined by Gingo and the dragonborne. “Hey idiot! This place is controlled by some psychic power! Gingo studied the room and recalled that we have to move in certain directions based on our position when we step into the room. Only two positions were available to step on so your movement style options were limited to two. He also explained the statues have to follow these rules and each type of statue moved differently. With that the statues came to life. The horseman seemed to move similar to me so I decided to copy its movement style which seemed to be “L” shaped. Gingo also moved in the same style as me while the dragonborne moved anywhere diagonally. I handed the dragonborne a dagger, for he was weaponless. After a long and harsh battle, we managed to defeat the statues. It was at that moment I learned how valuable a cleric is, for he saved my life. I also learned to never split up from my friends again. We lay there, three bloody heaps of organs, skin, and clothing. Barely having the strength to breath, we almost died in that room. I could not help the situation for I could not pull together the strength to get out any of my healing surges from my backpack. Luckily, Soveliss and Rillian arrived and found us right in time as we were on the brink of death. We healed up and I found the horse stolen. Upon further investigation, I noticed the horse was not there long, for he did not leave any droppings behind. We then stayed the night in our previous room. I noticed that Soveliss had some armor with him. Noting that it was lightweight and would serve no purpose to a fighter or a mage, I asked him if I could have it. He agreed as long as the next thing I found that he could use, I gave to him. I agreed and the armor was mine.

So in total, I almost died,to a bunch of statues and got some armor. Awesome. Time to go to sleep.

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Exxidion's Mind Ch. 4

Well today was a very successful day, but something just doesn’t add up… Maybe if I go over the events that took place here today, I will have some luck…

The pale Assassin. The Rider in Black. The mystery of the box. We proceeded through rooms fighting monsters until we came upon human guards and a strange, pale, human looking creature. We started fighting and in-between slashes, I asked the pale one why he was here. He replied that he is just paid to kill intruders. He isn’t even with the guards. Rillian told him we would pay him if he doesn’t attack us. He replied, “Deal with the guards first we’ll see how things turn out”. He then took a defensive stance as we dealt with the guards. After slaying the guards, the pale one said he would tell us everything he knows if we let him free. He told us that Traevis and this Necromancer who hired him have been fighting over this chest for years. He also said the Necromancer is in the room to the right. We spared the pale assassin and let him go. After a 5 minute rest, and a thorough investigation for traps, we continued to the necromancer’s room. Even though I was stealthy in opening the door, he magically sensed our presence and told his skeletal minions and enormous zombie to deal with us. The battle began and ended within 5 minutes and we killed the necromancer and his troops. I recognized the necromancer as the rider in black who lead the goblin ambush and the stealing of the box. A chest revealed 200 gold coins. I took five of them, and gave everyone including myself 25 each. Since I promised my next find to Soveliss, he took 25 of my 30 coins. The box which we needed to return was on a table and open. I was told not to look into the box so I didn’t. The rest of my party, however, thoroughly studied the box and its contents. They then proceeded to ruin my innocence by relaying their findings to me. Inside the box was a powerful necromancy skull. We decided to take a rest in the room for the night. This leads to my current position now. It still doesn’t add up… What would Traevis want with this skull? He obviously knows that it’s in the box because he told me not to look in it. Is Traevis a necromancer too? Is he trying to destroy the skull? If we get caught carrying this around, we will be imprisoned and then killed by town guards. We can’t just give him the skull. If he is a necromancer, he could kill us easily with that kind of firepower. Maybe we could bury the box outside the cave and tell Traevis where it is buried so he can dig it up. That would give us a chance to spy on him and figure out what he intends to do with such an object. Nonetheless, I will rest for now and my thoughts may be answered later…

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Exxidion's Mind Ch. 5

Well, we have our box, but now what do we do with it? We explored all there is to explore here, but we can’t just walk out of here with this box in our hands, can we? Whatever happens, we need to get out of this stupid dungeon. I’m sick of this place. Not much happened between now and the last rest…

Being stealthy, I opened the door to the next room without being noticed, however, my loud and klutzy brother made a distinct noise and startled a hobgoblin that I was going to sneak up on. The hobgoblin stood next to a ring of stone with a bunch of lit coals. We entered combat bloodying the creature fairly quickly; however it managed to throw burning coals at my whole party igniting them aflame. I luckily was able to dodge one flying coal as the rest stopped in front of me. He then proceeded to call in reinforcements. If there is anything I hate more than pests in this world, it is pests who shout for reinforcements. Reinforcements came and were able to attack me from behind and attack my brother from the side. We quickly exterminated them and dealt with the hobgoblin. After defeating them we searched a few rooms and found some items that may be of importance later. With that, we rested.

So what? Are we going to just leave this wretched place? We didn’t forget anything did we? That dragon only owned a small portion of this area because Malarath, the Black rider took the rest over. With him gone, the dragon will surely take the whole place for his own… Ooh and he has treasure. I want a piece of that before we leave… I can’t just walk away with an armful of treasure in my hands without being caught though… We will need to kill him first… That’s it. We will kill the dragon, take the treasure and get out of here.

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Exxidion's Mind Ch. 6

Well today was a rough day. We fought a lot of battles that I found… Difficult. Let’s review.

We woke up and I told the party my idea. “I say we go slay the dragon.”
“You’re crazy.” Gingo replied
“With 7 of us it is feasible.”
“We are going to die”
The argument between Gingo and I continued like this for quite some time until I decided that I would go and anyone who was with me was more than welcome to follow. Following me was Rillian and Eshanath About 30 seconds later, Gingo followed bringing with him Iados, the dragonborne and Soveliss. With the seven of us around the dragon’s room, I attempted to stealthily open the curtain of the room, but the dragon heard the curtain rings slide along the top bar holding the curtain up. Thinking quickly, I ran along a wall, using the speed and momentum that I gained to power my attack. I pinpointed the most fatal spot in the dragon’s back and threw a dagger there precisely hitting it at the perfect spot damaging it badly. Using what was left of my momentum; I flipped my body around and ran along the same wall in the opposite direction performing the same move gaining two strikes on the dragon weakening it majorly before it could even retaliate. Losing my momentum, I landed back onto solid ground. Infuriated by this, Faron, the dragon, blasted a breath of cold ice in my direction. I had quick enough reflexes to dodge the blow, however, when the blast hit the wall, it created an explosion of ice and I was badly bloodied in one blow. Thinking that this may have not been a good idea, I ran along the opposite wall and threw a dagger at the dragon’s neck causing him to bleed profusely, however, seeing as how he was a dragon; it would take a lot more than that to kill him. The doors on the other side of the room from the curtains opened up as a magical spell was cast by Iados causing the dragon to fall prone and defenseless. After hearing the groans of agony, pain, and suffering, from such a large blow escaping my lips, Rillian burst through the doors near me in attempt to save his brother. He charged forward taking a large slash with his newly found battleaxe at the dragon’s head, taking advantage of the fact that the dragon could not defend itself very well. “Get behind me brother!” He shouted to me and I took cover nearby the door. As Soveliss approached from behind the curtains, the Arcane Circle glowed a bright white light. The light shot from it in a very small beam like lightning. The lightning reached out and around Gingo, grabbed Soveliss and pulled him into the circle and into the great beyond. “NO! Soveliss!” I was shocked at the loss of my party member, but I had to save my emotions for later. I had to keep focused on the battle. Gingo then stormed through the curtains casting a small shield around me as sword that looked as it was made of light rose from the ground and slashed at the evil dragon. Eshanath took his turn as he raised his sword. The dragonborne (not the dragon) charged in slashing at the dragon once with his great sword and breathing fire at the dragon. The shield protecting me helped some, but I feared that if the dragon awoke again I would surely be killed. Fearing for my safety, I endured the pain of my bleeding leg and moved behind my party ran up a wall and jumped off of it. Using my gained height, I threw a dagger at his head with great precision. Due to the spell Iados cast, the dragon fell asleep. We all ganged up on the dragon throwing attack over and over until finally the dragon woke up. Not wanting to die, we all threw one final attack at the dragon. It roared in agony and promptly fell the ground collapsing on the heap of treasure.
After taking a five minute break for me to heal myself with my remaining healing surges, I could finally think straight again. Well great. Now how are we supposed to get the treasure when a huge heavy dragon is lying dead on top of it? Just as I thought that we wasted our time, Rillian and Eshanath were able to roll the dragon off of the heap of treasure revealing 140 gold coins and a turquoise gem that seemed of great value. I decided to take the gem and the gold was divided between the rest of the party evenly. With the box of death and the treasure in our packs along with our weapons in hand, we decided to leave the dungeon, however when we got near the entrance, we found that a 10 foot radius of the area had caved in making it impassable. So, we had to find another way out. We remembered the door where the dragonborne and Soveliss (God bless his soul) were brought into the dungeon through sacks. We decided to go through there. It just so happened that this was the right entrance that we chose not to go through. We ended up in the cave right outside of the dungeon. The faint aroma of rain wafted through the air. I cannot speak for the rest of my party, but I could make out three skeletal beings searching through something on the soaked ground as the rain poured down on them. Wanting to get a closer look, I snuck behind a wall when my loud brother decided to march out into battle in a very non-stealthy manner. A tiefling necromancer (why is it always the necromancers) called out to him, “Do you work for Malarath?”
“No I do not.”
“Do you have the box?”
“I cannot lie to you. No I do not.”
“I think you do,” she called to my brother. Afterwards calling out to me, “You may as well come out. I know you are there.” Thinking that she may have been bluffing, I decided to not move from my position. “Very well then. Ready your weapons.”

This is why I hate necromancers:
1. They can bring back their minions after you kill them
2. They always know you are hiding no matter how stealthy you are because they have magic
With that, we entered combat. I leaped out from behind my cave wall and quickly located the most lethal point before throwing a dagger at the first skeleton I saw. He collapsed to the ground and disintegrated into a pile of ash. Rillian charged forward and took a swing at one of them and was able to kill them with ease. It was at that moment that I realized that I wasted my energy and effort on such a weak creature. After many rounds of killing skeletons, killing her pet rat-like creature, and her undead skeletal horseman two times in a row, we managed to kill the female Tiefling mage. After searching the bodies of the foes we killed, Iados found 3 pearls seeming to be of high value and a bag. Gingo and Iados both called out, “Oooh, a bag of holding…” Because it was he who found it, Iados was able to keep the bag of holding and the three pearls for himself. Spoiled brat. How come he gets all the treasure?

We still don’t know what to do with the box… Well I better get some rest so I can think clearly in the morning when we make our decision.

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Journal of Gingo Uchari 1/23/11

Our troubles have not ceased. The ornate box containing a skull for necromancy had left us trodden in in our dieties’ wake. We had foolishly agreed to terminate the rein of the white dragon lounging on his pile of coins and easily outnumbered him. Sovelis would have made this feat even less of a challange and this temple was as quiet as a graveyard after the fight. Upon waking up the next morning there was rain pouring down outside the cave that shrouds the secret entrance to the temple. Travis and the black rider weren’t the only ones searching for this item. A young attractive tifling woman, a wererat she called Clyde, and a batalion of the undead beckons us and does not hesitate to threaten us to hand over the box. Negotiating was pointless and the only option we had left was to fight. Being a cleric, I could make the undead minions she posesses suffer. With sovelis missing this fight would have been easier. Not only does this vile object have interest to mavleolent beings everywhere, but somehow as I write in this diary, I feel we will not be respected by the citizens of fallcrest.

-Gingo Uchari cleric of the sun.

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Exxidion's Mind Ch. 7 part 1

Well this has to be the most boring hike I’ve ever been on… Nothing to do but walk and listen to my thoughts…

We woke up from the inside of the cave. The Nynga’s dead body still laid there soaking the wet grass. We saw light covering the grassy plains meaning the storm had passed. Specifically, it passed to the west. Upon looking at the storm clouds, the lightning stuck out like a sore thumb. It appeared to be the same lighting that pulled Soveliss into the arcane circle. Always hitting the same spot as it struck the ground, it seemed to be traveling west as if creating a line for us to follow. Soveliss had to be there. After packing our things and placing the box in our newly found bag of holding, we followed the mysterious lighting in search of our missing companion. When we arrived at the crossroads, we noticed that the lightning held its position in one spot at the center of the crumbled tower in the middle of the crossroads. Seeming to be moving in slow motion, the lighting cycled to the ground and then back to the cloud. We decided to go back to town in order to learn more about this lightning. Moving ahead of everyone else, I walked along the dirt road keeping my distance from the tower. To my dismay, I made my presence aware of a guard drake. It growled at me alerting it’s friend and master. “Do you have my box?” a voice came from above. I looked up to find a man standing at the top of the crumbled tower 30 feet above the ground.
I swear if one more necromancer asks me for this stupid box I’m going to stab somebody. “Yeah, what about it?” I replied as two thugs and a goblin walked out from behind the tower. The goblin looked similar to the invisible mage that we fought in the dungeon. We conversed with the mage for a while and I ran over to the side of the tower. I looked at a silhouette of a humanoid figure floating in the lightning. I recognized it to be Soveliss. Don’t worry Soveliss. I thought to myself, I’ll get you out. I looked at the goblin and after a quick examination; I realized that the goblin was the source of the lightning. His outstretched hand seemed to be causing the lightning to continue surging through Soveliss’ body. I need to get him to move his hands… Rillian asked the man standing atop the tower for the 30 gold we were promised so he could still get the reward he was promised. The man stated that in our current situation, we should be lucky he hadn’t killed our companion yet. I pulled out my lasso, and we decided to attack. The goblin went around the corner of the tower, turning his back to me. With that, I snuck up behind him, placed the lasso around his neck and pulled it snugly around his neck. Over the gag that he made, I could faintly hear the sound of a guard drake and the two thugs dying. “Let’s get nice and comfy shall we?” I cleverly remarked and handed the rope to my brother. With a tug, he tightened the rope. In attempt to stop himself from choking to death, he put his hand to the rope and struggled to break free from his restraints. Looking up, I noticed that the lightning stopped and heard a loud thud. This loud thud just so happened to be Soveliss falling to the ground from his elevated height. Teleporting right behind us, Soveliss commented on his injury, “What in the name of Pelor were you thinking?”
“Take it easy, we just saved your ass.” Rillian replied while putting his foot up against the gobbling and tightening the rope.
“Saved my – I just fell 30 feet!” Soveliss stood there.
“30 feet huh?” I made a mental note in my head, “Well are you dead?” I sarcastically asked.
“No but—”
“But nothing!” Rillian swung his axe at the goblins head chopping it off easily due to the goblin’s restraint, “I think we deserve some credit. In case you didn’t notice, you had lightning shooting through your face!”
“In case YOU didn’t notice, I just fell 30 feet and I’m very badly bloodied!”
“Then use up a healing surge and get over it. We have a dying cleric to save.” I replied taking my rope back from Rillian. Remembering my mental note, I subtracted 5 feet from the 30 foot drop that Soveliss took and coiled up 25 feet of rope.
“Whatever.” Soveliss casted a large ball of fire hitting and setting aflame the man standing atop the tower, one guard drake and two skeletons that seem to have been created by the necromancer.
Great. Looks like our friend knows how to raise the dead. I muttered while climbing the tower. Upon getting near the top, I took the end of the rope that wasn’t tied in a lasso and tied a bowline knot around me making sure to leave the 25 feet of space I coiled up around me.
“Arise.” The necromancer chanted raising his arms up and reviving his dead skeletons and the dead guard drake nearest to him.
Well, I better get this over with… Taking my rope lasso, I was about to place the rope around him when he let out a bloodcurdling shriek and vanished. Well there went my idea, but I guess the fire thing worked too… (to view Exxidion’s unexecuted plan, go to Chapter 7 part 1&1/2) upon looking down, I noticed a badly bloodied cleric being teamed upon by the guard drake and the two skeletons. One skeleton held him down while the other basked him very badly. At that moment, I knew the guard drake was going to finish him off. The guard drake’s jaws chomped down, and barely missed my friend giving him the opportunity to heal. He made his escape from the skeletons and backed up while healing himself. From my elevated height, I managed to hit a skeleton badly, but didn’t kill him. The rest of my party finished off the three creatures. Scaling down the tower, our party rejoined and took a short 5 minute rest. Confirming that the box was still in the bag of holding, we left the bloody scene treading onwards towards the town…

Hey… it looks like we are here. Yes this must be Fallcrest. I recognize the gates.

“Greetings Adventurers.”

Who are these guys? Monks seeming to be of little importance and random timing at the front gates of Fallcrest welcoming our return? I guess I’ll just go with it and will find out more later.

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