Adventuring Company of the Twin Foxes

Envoys & Spies, A prelude to the Tyranny of the Dragon Queen
Dungeon Master's session recap

The Year of Lightning Storms, 1374 Dale Reckoning

The Claw of Sunsets

A year has passed, the Band have established their new fortress just half a day’s ride from Baldur’s Gate along the north cliffs overlooking the Chionthar river. A summon’s arrives from Dabron Sashenstar for the adventuring company to return to the city. Just two days prior, the Council of Four makes a public declaration to oppose and break the Iron Throne, chaos errupts as many patriar families, who’s fortunes are tied to the Iron Throne, begin to foment discord among the merchant classes. The price of weapons and iron triples overnight.

Ches 4, Highsun (noonday)
Baldur’s Gate
Arriving at Baldur’s Gate, (it is a half-days ride from the Cliffside Fortress) they adventurer’s are informed through Baldur’s Mouth, (news criers who make public announcements througout the city) that the Grand Dukes have declared the breaking of the Iron Throne, and that Dabron Sashenstar will lead the charge to stop their tyranny and monopoly of iron and arms trade.

The party meets at Sashenstar’s estate, a well maintained, fortified manor, heavily guarded due to the news. They are joined by Duchess Liia Jannath, who reports several assassination attempts have been made upon her over the last 2 days. They are introduced to Govenor Tarbaw Nighthill, of Greenest. He relates his story, how his rich farming town was sacked and pillaged by Iron Throne mercenaries, and how they were aided by a blue dragon that nearly leveled his keep.

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The party is asked to gather intelligence, and spy on the mercenary encampment that has been wintering in the hill regions north of the Cloudpeak mountains bordering Amn. They are to also find what happened to the famed dragon scholar Leosin Erlanthar of Candlekeep, who went missing after the attack on Greenest, if possible extract him.

Ches 14
Elturel

The party travel east along the Chiontar river to Elturel, the famed city of the Hellriders. A tenday later they disembark and quarter for the night. Sir Darian meets with a prominent member of the Order of the Gauntlet, Onthar Frume, paladin of Torm, who tells him of a scholar they’ve been searching for, and gives Darian clues to a lost Holy Avenger blade stolen by the Iron Throne.
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Ches 20
Greenest in the Greenfields

Six days of hard riding the party see the devastation of Greenest, the keep, nearly destroyed from the lightning breath weapon of the young blue dragon, the homes, mostly intact, are vacant and a few villages intrepid enough to move back into their homes, point to treasure loaded wagons that went south, taking along prisoners as slaves. They discover hidden by melting snows the body of a man in dragon armor, who appears to have been assassinated, hidden under his armor is a secret message from the Harpers.
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A day later, the party find fresh tracks to a vanguard of troops, after a heated melee with the mercenaries, Torgn discovers a slaver he knew from his past, Frulam Mondath, the Lady of the Crescent blade. After defeating her men, the party interrogate her, she reveals details of the encampment, and asks Torgn to seek revenge. Torgn claims the exotic looking halberd she calls ‘the Crescent Blade of Tchazzar.’
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Sending Nazene to scout ahead, the party find that the encampment only has a small contigent of approximately two dozen guards, led by a ‘dragon-man warrior with blue scales’, and that the treasure wagons have headed north along the Uldoon trail to Beregost, (over a two tendays ago). The camp is guarded by foresters who hunt and gather game to feed somethign inside the caves. The scholar, they discover from the Lady of the Cresent blade, was tortured for 3 days, but did not break, he was then moved inside the caves to be fed to dragon hatchlings. Frulam also tells the party that Torgn’s daughter is alive, has a rare talent for ‘the Art’, and now serves as the apprentice to the renegade Red Wizard Rath Modar

Upon entering the caves the party is beset by draconian drakes, who visciously guard the caves, and are confronted by the half-dragon Langdedrosa Cyanwrath, commander of the hatchery, defeating and capturing the strange dragon warrior.
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The Mithral Fangs
Loyal henchmen serving the adventuring company

From the journal of Torgn Amberfief, Retired member of the Twin Foxes:

1373 DR,

I had gotten so close, just a hairs breadth of distance away from seeing my sweet Sarah again. In the back of my mind there was fear that she would be irreparably changed, a woman so unlike the little girl I once knew that I would be unable to connect with her. I had been searching for so long that whatever the end result might be it needed to come to fruition.

All of these thoughts, these hopes and dreams, shattered like glass when Atalas’ head entered the Bhargests’ belly. The knowledge of where she had been taken and why, the closest lead I had in years reduced to a pile of red meat convulsing on the forest floor.

It wasn’t long until we found ourselves with new patronage, and I had found myself with some time to think. Clearly Sarah was further in than I had ever had the chance to predict. Bonded in servitude to forces far beyond a simple slavers den. When it came right down to it, even when I had a pathway to get to her it was impossible to follow. The band I had finished my own contract with was small and did not have the force behind it that I would need to raise.

With our new stronghold laid out before us, and our new patron (or is that master?) focusing us again on a dangerous journey ahead, I knew the time had come to raise support so when the next opportunity came to life I would be ready.

The best way to gain the respect of fighting men is to prove to them you are the best. With this new free time I set out again to take odd jobs in the hopes of meeting the right sort of connections. It certainly didn’t take long, our fame (or is that notoriety?) as a group preceded us, and even though I attempted to keep the association secret it still seemed to find its way back out from time to time. The particular situation involved a colony of bugbears ransoming a small village. I had hooked up temporarily with a group known as the Mithral Fangs, a relatively small band of mercenaries operating in the area similar to my own group.

The task was simple, kill the leader and display your power to the rest, scattering them to the winds and earning the gratitude of the villagers. Of course everything simple seems to have a way of getting completely screwed. My contract was being paid by the leader of the group, her name was Donna and one of the toughest women I have ever met in my life. With a similar life to mine she had grown up on the streets and her appearance reflected it. Short fiery hair unkempt from spending most of its time under a helmet and strong tall build. She had started the group from nothing, taking orphans off of the streets and putting swords in their hands. Her skill with the sword and shield style seemed to be extremely good.

Donna and I, along with a small strike group of armored warriors approached the camp intending to challenge the leader in single combat. As soon as I saw this Morgar I could already tell things were going downhill. You don’t often see the tribal leader with a necklace of fetishes and a staff topped with a pure crystal. The whole colony was out to see us arrive, maybe 20 of these beasts, the leader informed us that our challenge was folly and we should surrender.

Our six was clearly outmatched by the strength of the full colony, however Donna was not short with tactics. Blowing a sharp pitched call roused the rest of the crew and in the ensuing skirmish they were able to rush to our aid. Morgar had a dearth of powerful and nasty tricks, the worst of which he wasted no time in applying. After chanting those word of power, to complete a long held memory, I saw Donna turn towards me with the fire of battle. She gave me no quarter, and as I attempted to avoid her and strike out at Morgar I saw my blows defended at every turn. That single incantation almost swung the whole battle in his favor, and without much recourse I gave Donna the fight of her life.

Through the pitched battle and the dance between our blades we each gave one another something to be proud of, her sword opened up a scar down my right cheek and my great sword took her arm off at the shoulder. With her fighting ability removed I turned to Morgar, running him through in the stomach with my blade. When he immediately tried to push out a final incantation I shoved the necklace into his mouth and snapped his neck.

With the leader defeated the rest of the bugbears turned their heels and ran. Donna was not thrilled, as you could imagine, but in showing restraint by not killing her she appreciated it. Knowing that her ability to fight was greatly diminished she offered to turn control of the Mithral Fangs over to me, and I was only too happy to oblige.

This was only the first step in a long series of maneuvers needed to ensure that the next time my girl is within my grasp I will be ready to take whatever steps necessary to find her and make things right.

1489 DR
Current Mithral Fangs mercenaries:

Denton the Con (commander)
Brewster One-Hand
Ravager Danny
Hughston the Spider
Arley Three Toes
Krista Greenhelm
Gotta Gledasdotter
Shady Bronna
Bullettooth Arlene
Prowling Jakes
Sad-song Stephan
Razortooth Marshall
Brendon One-Eye
Sly Roddy the Coin
Bryanna O’ the Gorget

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An Excursion Between
A misadventure

Seong-Won Yu
Baldur’s Gate.
It is my sincere belief that our ordeal with the Lady of the Crescent Blade is over. Infiltrating the caverns of our enemies was met with defeat and the death of Lady Atala. It is my belief that she was the Lady of the Crescent Blade. But now I wonder who inspires the Barghests now. Our findings lead to the Iron Throne. While we were instruments in the protection of the city, fending of rogue cults and an unending cloud of crime, the Iron Throne’s influence was cast wide and we of the Band of Twin-Foxes were unable to maneuver well.

Granted the sponsorship of Lady Jannath and Dabron Sashenstar, our company was acquired and made independent of the Flaming Fist company. For now, my comrades were safe, for all other avenues we thought safe were likewise infiltrated by the enemy.

Where am I? Gifted a Cliffside Fortress as our new base of operation, a vast improvement compared to the underceller of a shop in Baldur’s Gate, each of us made some form of contribution in the weeks that followed. While Zolis and I assisted in bringing shipments of materials to spruce the Fortress, a feeling of anxiousness crept upon me. My comrades would ask, particularly Zolis, who had a keen sense for body language, and I expressed the need to seek lands beyond. Adventure. No, it was not adventure.

Sword Coast.
It was purely my intent to follow the path to Talos, whose church was banned in most cities, but sailors would pay him as much respect as Umberlee received in Baldur’s Gate. By sending Lady Atala’s corpse unto the fire, I sent a message to the great god with a plea for power and deliverance. Every being that I fought, every time I unleashed the elements upon them, I did so with the hope that Talos would grant me the strength to cast off my shackles. I have told no one, for the Red Wizards may be listening and watching. If Eldon was aware of any one watching, I’m sure he would secure our actions, but I did not want to take the risk.

Once again I took sail with my sea crew on the Emerald Kraken, leaving the port at Baldur’s Gate. At sea, I found peace in the stillness of my spirit, while the waters which carried the ship would provide the motion. Some of my shipmates would ask about the rumors in which I could manifest elemental powers, but I refrained from frivolous displays unless it was used to assist my work on the ship.

After a few days, visions of the elements came to me. I did not know what they were at first, but I understood the feeling they gave me like the first time I touched each of them, wind, water, fire, and earth. It was pure, it was intense, and each was a foundation. Erjesko, Fenyra, Gextas, Ozno, some of my fellow sailors whom I have been on many voyages on, all had to wake me from my feverish dreams. This elemental chaos would be meaningless, diviners would try to sell sparing words to calm the uninitiated, but my walk with nature worked like a cipher.

To my fellow sailors, I would share pieces of this dream. To my Red Wizard observers, I would only admit that my work with the Twin Foxes had taken its toll. While I wandered my dreams to understand the message within me, my credibility to do my job as First Mate came to question. Despite my performance in defending the ship against an assault by Sahaugin, it was not enough. Fenyra, whom I vouched for her capabilities being greater than some of the men on the vessel, was one of the first to detract her support. While I thought this would lead to a mutiny, I learned that our Red Wizard taskmaster, Azkos, a representative of the Red Wizards for Baldur’s Gate, was spreading dissent among the crew.

My efforts to challenge Azkos’s words led to a duel. Red Wizards are not always known for their honor and I found myself battling at a disadvantage. How? Azkos affixed an anti-elemental ward upon me in the form of my bandolier, one which I usually wore while helming the Emerald Kraken. Where was my captain in all of this? Conveniently missing for this voyage, which set me as Captain and Azkos with the ability to overrule my power. Fortunately my training as a hand-to-hand fighter worked to me benefit, but it wasn’t enough to fend off the power of a Red Wizard.

Failing the duel, I was removed from my position. Azkos was proud, took command of the Kraken, and put me to chains. I wondered if Talos had abandoned me. Towards the last leg of our voyage, nearing three months, Gextas revealed that an anti-elemental ward was on the bandolier which still remained upon me. Gextas removed the stone which was enchanted with the ward and after a few more nights of rest, I could feel the elements again.

Before my vengeance could be made, a mutiny was under way on the ship that evening. Ozno led a revolt against Azkos. Gextas intercepted me, warning me that Ozno was not revolting on my behalf. Azkos was ultimately slain, a few of my men were likewise taken down. Gextas warned that the situation was more complicated than it seemed and had me take a boat off the Kraken. The ship would dock again at Baldur’s Gate in a few months more. As I rowed off into the night, I willed the waves to push me further and faster hoping no hidden beast would take me. Eventually I fell unconscious, exhausted for all the distance the elements could carry me. My last thought before I entered into my dreams was the loss of direction, knowing nothing of the politics that occurred on that ship before it was taken from me.

Waterdeep.
A cargo vessel managed to pick me up and chain me in the lower hold. Due to the colors I wore, they suspected me a Red Wizard. After sharing my story and having it verified by their Cartographer and Diviner, I was allowed minor comforts. The comfort of a deckhand. I learned the story of several of the crew who had assembled due to their passion for the high seas and a life away from land. I taught them a few ship maintenance tricks and earned my stay. It was no more than a week before we anchored at Waterdeep.

As surprising as the ambushes I endured in Baldur’s Gate, Waterdeep was no different. After a night at a tavern, I was taken away through the skills and work of unknown figures. What happened during the following months was a haze. I remembered returning back to the Fortress, but many other faces littered my memory, where events and creatures were woven into a story that could not keep to mind.

Return.
So, where am I? Home. Many months had passed since I initially departed the region. While I did find peace, a part of me felt things were more dangerous outside the walls of Baldur’s Gate. I must have become soft, yet unyielding. As my mind recovered with the generosity and cooperation of the Twin Foxes, the one thing I pulled from my voyage was the understanding that Talos was aware of me, but I was still just one of his many followers.

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The Lady of the Cresent Blade, part 4
Dungeon Master's session recap

(Continues from previous session)

28th of Ches, eventide

The Band is quartering at Nazene’s hide-out, and after resting the party receives word from streeet urchins that the Flaming Fist is looking for them. During the night the Band leaves the Outer City and camp out in the woods to the south after safely delivering the half-elves to the ship they have chartered to take them north to Silverymoon.

29th Ches, dawn
The band head south, to the outskirts of Cloakwood Forest, and locate the hide-out caves used by the Iron Throne mercenaries. As they near the waterfall hiding the entrace, the party is attacked by a pair of Barghests, which they defeat at great cost. They return to Baldur’s Gate with Lady Atala’s body (and head).

Sung builds a funeral pyre, to put to rest the remains of Lady Atala, (Nazene keeps her head and the heads of the Barghests to deliver to the Fist as trophies).

Tarsakh 1st, (late morning)
Arriving to Baldur’s Gate they party heads to Wyrm’s Rock, and meet with the Blaze and his men. They notice that the Blaze is not himself and the party is paid 100gp for the heads of the Barghests, Blaze also keeps the head of Lady Atala, (partly digested). He informs them that their adventuring charter has been ‘acquired’ by a new patron, the Grand Duchess Liia Jannath of the Council of Four, he directs them to the High Hall or her estate to inquire further. Nazene and others inquire from the Fist soldiery and confirm that the Blaze is not of late himself.

Highsun, (noon)
The party settles down to rest/eat/recoup at the Helm & Cloak, in the Upper City, (and near Lady Jannath’s home). They notice that the owners are retired adventurer’s who belonged to the now defunct Knights of the Unicorn adventuring company. As they eat, Vedren, the proprietor, informs them that a Calishite is at the bar asking to meet with them. Ibralym Skoond is ushered in, and he uses his sorcery to charm Sir Darian, Torgn and Sung. Realizing that his scheme is up, he pulls a wand, and casts a powerful lightining spell that snaps Sir Darian and Sung from their charm.

Outside their private room, Eldon discovers half a dozen Flaming Fists led by the Blaze himself ambush the party. The band is able to make an escape, and notice that from the shadows a being materializes, and dominates the soldiers, then uses a powerful ability to blast the minds of Nazene, Torgn, as well as killing some of the Flaming Fists, including the Blaze. The party escapes to a designated rendezvous.

Tharsun, (late afternoon, or four bells)
The party has healed up and taken a short rest meet with their new patron at the Jannath home, only a short walk from the Helm & Cloak. They introduce themselves, and discover that Grand Duchess Jannath is co-sponser of the band, her partner being the famed explorer, recently returned from captivity with the Tuigan Horde, Dabron Sashenstar, now head of his family. Lady Jannath promises to establish the adventuring company, offers advice, but is clear that the principal goal of their patronage is the protection of Baldur’s Gate, but more importantly, the destruction of the Iron Throne and their allies.

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The Lady of the Crescent Blade, part 3
Dungeon Master's session recap

28th of Ches, mid-morning
Nazene’s safehouse in the Coast Way, Outer City.

The Band maintains a low profile while safe guarding their 3 prisioners. After a night of rest, (Long rest) the band makes plans to turn over the two nobles to the Flaming Fist.

Dawn:
The party, now fully rested, decide to take some time to question/interrogate Atala, who offers her motivations, reasons, and known plans of her superiors, (“Im only told what I need to know, which is not much”) revealing a shadowy relationship between her misterss, (“The Lady of the Crescent blade”) with the powerful Iron Throne, as well as her past as a member of the Flaming Fist. She volunteers that the secret masters make use of prisoner labor, and that Torgn’s daugther is among the captives. She also reveals that her mistress and minions are “across the portal, but still on this plane” and offers to guide them back to the lair in the Cloak Wood.

Sometime later…
Nazene heads out on her own to return the damaged statue’s hands to the shrine of Umberlee, meets with some of her followers, who are grateful. Nazene then heads to Little Calimshan to meet with the Guild at the Calim Jewel Emporium, which is a front for the thieve’s guild. Rilsa expresses gratitude that the band has returned with the damaged statue pieces and that they are also handing over the culprits to the Fist for punishment.

Harbright, (early morning):
Nazene and Sir Darian head over to Wyrm’s Rock, the Fist Citadel, to speak to Blaze Ulder, and make arrangments to buy out the half-elves from their contact. While negotiating with the Fist lieutenant, Sir Darien confronts the mercenary leader, who’s statements about the half elves seem irrational and contradictory. Nazene also notices that Ulder’s demeanor and memories seem conflicted and disjointed.

They also hand over the broken statuary after Nazene makes arrangements earlier to restore the hands of the shrine to Umberlee to her followers.

Highsun, (noon):
The band makes their way back to the warehouses district in the Coast Way, while at the safe house, Seung and Kethra keep watch over Lady Atala. The band is ambushed by one of the Barghest fiends that has been tracking their movements, and the party slays the creature before it can successfully complete its transformation. After returning to the safe house, the band formulates a decision to take Atala to the lair of her “secret masters” and find Torgn’s daughter as well as to uncover more details on the mysterious Lady of the Crescent blade.

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The Lady of the Crescent Blade, part 2
Dungeon Master's session recap

26th Ches, Eventide

The party is ambushed by three fell beasts, wolf-like, but bigger, cunning and with a malevolet intelligence. As the melee culminates, a warhorn is heard, and the creatures retreat to their lair.
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Later in the evening, a watch is set up, (Torgn taking the first watch, followed by Nazene). Close to deepnight (midnight) Nazene hears gurgling sounds in the viscinity of their camp, and the party discovers 2 wounded captives. They soon discover these are Devlin Oberon and his accomplice Ettvard Ravenshade, who talks of his love for “the Lady.”

The adventurers decide to follow the lead set up by Devlin, who promises to lead them through a secret entrance to the lair of the “lady” as long as the party delivers him safely home and not turn him over the the Fist or the Watch.

27th Ches, Harbright (early morning)
Following Devlin’s directions, the band discovers a shallow river that ends at a waterfall. Devlin instructs them to enter through the secret tunnel that lies throught the waterfall about 30’ up.

Nazen takes the lead by scouting ahead, from a crack in the ceiling she sees a large ceremonial chamber, with braziers shadding some light, a dais with a broken altar and before it, a dark, oily mirror that swirls, a mystical portal, next to it a locked chest. Two of the fell beasts are speaking their hellish tongue, and Eldon, the gnome diviner deciphers that they have been commanded by the Lady to send a scouting group to the adventurer’s camp to confirm they are taking the two Baldurians back to the city. After confriming these orders, the two best lay down to sleep, guarding the chamber, (the party identifies these are the two beasts that were wounded in the attack the previous evening who escaped).

The Band decide to enter, using stealth to gain the upper hand in surprising the slumbering beasts. They attack after each member moves into position. Halfway through the battle, two figures emerge from the magical portal, revealing a beautiful woman and a powerfully built warrior in full plate who positions himself as her bodyguard. She parlays with the adventurers, talks about betrayals, revenge, the Iron Thone, how she was once a member of the Flaming Fist; but the speech does not convince the Band of adventuerers, and a melee ensues. The woman reveals to have magical ability and uses a unique spell to cast beads of explosive energy at the party, while her companion tries to protect her and recover the chest while attempting to make a hasty retreat. The duo are stopped through the strategic efforts of the adventurers, and the lady is wounded to the point of incapacitation while her bodyguard is slain. The chest is recovered and the Band leaves in haste before the other 3 beasts return from their scouting mission.

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[After the melee, the Band leave with the unconcious body of Lady Atala and the dead body of her henchman Sigur (carried by Torgn)].

The Band travels on the Coast Way road north, back to Baldur’s Gate, arriving by night, and settle their rescued nobles and captured enemies in one of Nazen’s safe houses across the Chiontar river, south of Wyrm’s Rock Castle.

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The Lady of the Crescent Blade, part 1
Dungeon Master's session recap

24th day of Ches

The Band organize downtime activities since last session (approx. 1 month downtime) calculating professional activities, training, and development.

Early morning, the Band is summoned to appear before Blaze Ulder, Commander and Castellan of Wyrm’s Rock, headquarters of the Flaming Fist. They are given the job of independently investigating the vandalism of 6 prominent statues (hands chopped off and taken):

Seaserpent Tamed by Umberlee, (near the Water Queen’s House);

Fury of the Fist, (commemorating the victories of the Flaming Fist, outside Seatower);

Balduran Looks Out to Sea, (overlooking the Chiontar river from east of the city);

Six Wise Machinists, (near the High House of Wonders);

Faithful Shopkeeper Meets the Honest Trader, (at the foot of the Counting House pier);

Beloved Ranger, (only permanent fixture in the middle of the Wide)

The Band negotiates a purse of 500 gold pieces, with a bonus of 100 gp for each statue’s hands restored.

All Balduran’s cherish Minsc and Boo, his animal companion, considered favored protectors and good omen; the defacement of this statue in particular, upsets the whole city. The defacement of Umberlee’s statue also causes the sailing ships in the harbor to remain docked, as sailors, (being a very superstitious lot) refuse to sail until the goddess is appeased or her statue restored.

25th Ches
Zolis and Nazene arrange to attend a party at Wyrm’s Rock.

26th Ches
Clues discovered by the Band point to two scions of the Patriar families: Ravenshade and Oberon. The young nobles are Devlin Oberon and Ettvard Ravenshade, both who absconded with the stolen hands of these statues. Clues point they have travelled south on the Coast Way towards Candlekeep and Beregost.

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Of Roaches and Other Things
Kethra's Thoughts (Session 3)

I missed out on some pretty hot events it seems while I was running errands for the company. My squad caught themselves a prisoner, a half-elf member of the cult of the six fingered hand by the name of Valden Vannath. The fellow is, well was, a puffed up ass, going on about his rich and powerful family. Got pretty quiet about that when it was pointed out he must be a bastard, though. Getting ahead of myself, though. Some of my mates took a go at questioning the fellow. Torgn lost his temper a little too quick, what with the guy being into slave taking and sacrificing folks to his goddess. Zolis tried some sweet talking, but that didn’t work so well either. Then Darian got going on him about how they were both noble and shit, and could reach an understanding. It kinda worked, too. I was a bit impressed by Darian, he managed to be pretty effective while being all Tyr honest-like. Although still probably a noble shithead. Hard to overcome upbringing, but I’ll give him a chance I guess.

The fellow kept going on about how the great goddess Waukeen was so important to everything in Faerun and ruled all, which just goes to show that for all his noble family he didn’t get much of a religious education. Waukeen does her thing, and Kelemvor does his thing, and so on. There isn’t any all-powerful god. Well, ok, there kind of is, but he’s super lazy and doesn’t want to do anything himself, but is perfectly willing to throw a fit if the other gods don’t do their jobs the way he thinks they’re supposed to. I’ve met plenty of people like that, too.

At any rate, he tried to bribe us all, too, offering five thousand gold for his release and the return of the intended sacrifices. Obvious bullshit, but I could see that Zolis and Seong-Won were tempted. Best to keep an eye on them, I think. At least Darian and Torgn weren’t swayed, although I don’t know about the gnome. Of course our prisoner kept trying to evade and lie anyway despite the chummy noble thing, which I pointed out to Darian, and we were just starting to make some real progress, learning that the prisoners were destined for Waukeen’s Promenade in Athkatla, when we were interrupted by more fanatics. I heard them fiddling with the safe house entrance, and we got ready. But instead of coming down right away they tossed down some balls that exploded and burned us pretty bad. Good thing all the former captives were in the other room and out of the way of the blast, or they’d have been right fucked.

Then they came down after us, and the tables turned on them pretty quick. Torgn just tore into them, and I got in a few good licks too along with Darian, and that was almost that. But they made sure to take the prisoner out with them by tossing a few more exploding balls that hit all of us. I guess it saved the cost of a formal cremation. I said a few prayers for them while the muscly folks took to breaking through the ceiling into the building above. Those guys might have been shitheads, but they were pretty obviously saps too. Somehow the folks in charge never end up doing the dying for the cause, I’ve noticed. So I tried to help them on their way, since they seemed ripe for abuse by the demons that wait by the Paths of the Dead. Don’t know if Waukeen will bother help her supposed devoted followers, though, since what’s the profit in it?

Once we got upstairs we found more guys waiting outside, so we jumped them real quick while Nazene led the captives to safety. At least this time I was able to keep any these guys from kicking the bucket before we had to take off, what with the Flaming Fist turning up to investigate the ruckus. Once we met up, after a bit of discussion we decided to stick them at the temple of Helm, where the priest agreed to grant them sanctuary. That guy seemed all right.

We’d hardly got that set up when a messenger came for Darian asking our group to come to the High Hall. I didn’t really want to go, but the call was for the whole group and I figured it be worse not to show. I’d never been to the High Hall before. It was pretty fucking big, but not big enough to hold all the shit they crap out there.

We thought it was going to be about the Vannath family kicking up a fuss about their wayward son’s premature cremation, but instead we found Flaming Fist officer Ulder Ravenguard and that roach Ibralym waiting for us. Ulder actually seemed to pay attention to Ibralym’s opinion, which I figure makes him corrupt, a fool, evil, or some combination of the three. Or maybe he’s doing that “keep your enemies close” thing.

At any rate it turned out that instead of punishing us they wanted to provide us with a formal adventuring charter. I figure it’s just another way of exerting their control. Then Ibralym tried to talk us into turning those half-elf captives over to his “protection.” Of course he didn’t actually have a real plan other than some bullshit about trusting him so I called him on his shit. Saying “fuck you” to his face a couple times felt pretty good, I have to admit. We declined to accept his offer immediately and resolved to offer the former captives a choice as to their future.

As Darian pointed out, those poor bastards aren’t ever going to be safe as long as the cult is out there wanting them for their special sacrifices. Which I figure means not ever, since wiping out cults is like trying to get rid of roaches. I suggested a compromise choice that would grant them some form of safety: placing them with an organization with the strength to protect its members, like the Flaming Fist. Zolis’ suggestion was to make sure they were no longer “pure” sacrifices, the skeevy bastard.

So we presented them with three options: placement with an organization, returning home, or taking Ibralym up on his offer. They immediately picked the last option, going on about how he such a “nice man.” I lost my temper with them, much to my later shame. We talked to them more and it started to get pretty weird; they liked the Ibralym option too much for it to make sense. So I asked Eldon to inspect them for magic, and he found an enchantment of unnatural friendship laid upon some jam they had eaten. Where did the jam come from? A gift basket sent by our good friend Ibralym. The fucker.

So we kept them in the temple of Helm overnight until the enchantment wore off, and guess what, they decided joining the serving staff of the Flaming Fist seemed the best of the options after all.

I reckon Ibralym overplayed his hand this time. Now we know for sure of his interest in these six half-elves, and we can guess that he’s either a cult member himself or is linked to them somehow. Perhaps he means to sell them back to the cult for money or arcane secrets? We also know the shitter has a weakness for using his Art even when more mundane methods might serve better. Might be able to use that.

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Blood Money for the Goddess, Finale
Dungeon Master's session recap

Morning, 23rd day of Hammer

The Band of the Twin Foxes gathers at their Safe House, located dockside, to discuss their next move and to interrogate the captured cultist, who is revelaed to be Valden Vannath, bastard son of Lord Vannath, a noble family of Baldur’s Gate, (formerly of Neverwinter). The bastard reveals some of the plans of the League of Six Fingered Gentlemen, a heretical sect of the Church of Waukeen, and their operations in Athkatla, the capitol city of Amn. Zolis the bard is successful in revealing some details while Sir Darian assists.

Kethra soon perceives that their safe house has been located and is under attack; in minutes the band is surrounded by skilled mercenaries (bearing no identifying badges or marks). The attackers use Gondian smoke powder bombs, nearly killing the party, and another which is thrown targetting and killing the half-elven bastard.

Nazene manages to lead the six rescued slaves to safety, taking them to the designated rendezvous at the shrine of the Rose Portal, in the Upper City, (near the Wide). The Band decide to place their captives under the protection of the Temple of Helm, and they are granted rights of sanctuary until the party makes a decision on their fates. At the end of the melee, Zolis, (castig a bardic spell) collects the crossbows their attackers used before a squad of Flaming Fists arrive. The party makes an expedient exit, leaving their attackers at the hands of the mercenary patrol.

Later…

A footman in service to the Burrwood family notices Sir Darian, and greets him warmly, telling him that his father has been looking for him. At the Burrwood home the party is told that a letter has arrived summoning the Band of the Twin Foxes to present themselves at the High Hall on the following day. The letter bears the seal of the Council of Four.

24th of Hammer, near mid-day
The party prepare for their audience. Upon arriving at the High Hall, guards escort the Band to the great hall, and there they meet Blaze (Flaming Fist rank of Major) Ulder Ravengard of the and Lord Ibralym Skoond. They are rewarded with a purse of 200 gold coins, as a bonus for completing their mission of discovering the smuggling operation, as well as bringing it to the attention of the council. Blaze Ravengard gives the party an official Adventuring Charter which bears the seals of the Flaming Fists and the Council of Four. The Charter contracts the Band of the Twin Foxes for five years, with a monthly stipend of 50gp each for living expenses, as well as provisioning by the Flaming Fists (at credit). Sir Darian inspects the document, which is also reviewed by Eldon and the rest, noting that there is a clause for release in the event that the party wishes to terminate its contract. The charter also includes an official parchment by the High Heralds which grants the Band their own heraldry.

Band_of_the_Twin_Foxes.png

Blaze Ravengard informs the adventurers that they are to report to Wyrms Rock on the first day of Ches (in one month’s time) to receive their marching orders.

Later in the day, the Band goes to attend to the freed captives, and offer them several options. After a frustrating negotiation, it is discovered by Kethra that Lord Skoond has magically influenced the half-elves to strongly regard him in a favorable way. Eldon recommends that the party let their charges sleep off the effects of the dweomered fruit preserves, and the following day revisit the topic of the fate of the half-elves.

25th of Hammer, dawn.
The party present the option, which is carefully accepted by all of the six half-elves, of arranging for employment and training with the Flaming Fist Company. They are to be trained as journeymen and stewards for a period of 5 years.

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The Band of the Twin Foxes
An Adventuring Company in services to Baldur's Gate

The Band of the Twin Foxes was created by a joint agreement between the Flaming Fist Mercenary Company and a secret member of the Council of Four of Baldur’s Gate.

Its purpose is mysterious, but the band publicly operates as an Adventuring Company under the banner of the Flaming Fists. It is sometimes given special missions to advance the interests of Baldur’s Gate and sometimes must undertake less heroic and unsavory operations.

The High Heralds were comissioned by the city to award the Band a charter with its own heraldry:

Band_of_the_Twin_Foxes.png

This special unit is composed of seven members of various professions, skill and inclinations, yet they all have in common a dedicated sense of loyalty and esprit de corps. Membership sometimes varies, and is by special selection from the Dukes of Baldur’s Gate and the Flaming Fist commander. Members must be skilled at arms or in combat magics as a preliminary requisite and tends to be for life, (or untimely death).

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