Jordan’s young apprentice, Alleron, arrives in Caedwyr on the 8th of Equos in search of magical knowledge. Caedwyr is the center of the remnants of human civilization and he believes there is a good possibility that there might be resources to help him track down the knowledge he so desperately seeks.
The naive young man gets a place to stay at the Helton Inn and befriends a young catfolk woman named Saris. He meets the dastardly Mickey Blackhand who invites him to join him in “angling”. Alleron agrees, not knowing that “angling” is a term for robbery. When he learns what he has agreed to he goes to the guards, in disguise, and meets with a young, rather short captain named Gerard Aeronwen. The guards vow to help him but urge him to meet with Mickey and get him to admit what he wants from Alleron.
Alleron met with the rogue at midnight at the fountain in the empty Central Plaza, alone. Mickey appears from out of the shadows and taunts Alleron, letting the young wizard know that he knew about his deal with the guards thanks to some “friends” in the guard force. Thugs appear from the shadows behind Alleron. Mickey invites Alleron to join one last time but he is interrupted by a force of guards led by Captain Gerard. The thugs run off and Mickey turns to follow but Alleron stuns him with a powerful blast of glaring colors and he is arrested. For his safety Alleron is held in jail overnight and Mickey is hung at dawn for several crimes, including murder.
Capt. Gerard asks to hire Alleron on a temporary basis to help the Harborage Guards.
Cherin and Naras arrive in Harborage on the morning of the 9th of Equos. They make their way through the town, buying a room at the Wavecrest Inn. They help a young member of the Order of Illumination named Alois stop two thieves and the three quickly become allied as Alois explains he is in the town to investigate strange disturbances along the edge of Ceatharn Forest.
They meet Captain Gerard who tells them a bit more about the disturbances and introduces them to the young wizard Alleron and asks the mage to join with the group in their investigation.
Assembled, the four speak to a guard who had seen the disturbances, the man spoke of horses trampling and eating sheep. They journey to the forest’s edge and call on a farm built along the edge of it. The farmer tells them they’re free to look around, he tells them about the horrible things his animals have done after night fall. He keeps them tied up in the barn for his and their protection. He quickly retreats back inside and the group decides to stand guard outside the barn until nightfall.
The sun began setting and the dark forest seemed to loom out at them and as the light faded into red a strange breeze blew out from the forest and Cherin could sense a strange enchantment in it and Alleron could feel his familiar starting to react to the enchantment; the little calico was feeling rage. His tie to his familiar allowed the little cat to withstand the enchantment but the farm animals in the barn were not so fortunate.
One of the horses broke free as the shadows of night fell over the farm and began to trample the sheep. The group knew that to save the farmer’s flock they’d have to kill the horse, what they didn’t expect was the enchantment made the horse fearless and vicious and with several lashing hooves and a nasty bite it knocked Naras out cold as the others rushed around it. The horse was killed quickly but it had left the party battered and bruised and they could hear the barking of dogs from outside.
They decided to go to the forest and see where the enchantment was coming from but as they crossed the fields the dogs ran up, attacking them from behind. The big sheep dogs were vicious and fueled by the same evil power the horse was. They inflicted several nasty wounds on Cherin who used his training to minimize the pain and internal damage of their bites.
In a pitched fight the farm dogs were killed or knocked into submission and the four continued across the fields to the ominous forest ahead. As they entered its dark confines and began to venture deeper their minds were briefly overcome by vertigo. Naras, Alois, and Alleron managed to overcome the disorientation but Cherin was gone, lost in the forest on his own. They could hear him calling, but from far away, and as they journeyed it became clear that they were growing lost even as they found Cherin huddled at the base of a large oak, enspelled.
They shook Cherin free of his disorientation and continued deeper, the enchantment on the wind grew stronger as the plants around them slithered and moved and the paths of the forest shifted until they found themselves looking across a moonlit pond. It was Alleron who first heard danger, a massive humanoid creature with reptilian, even draconic, features. Cherin tried to speak to it but the creature could only blubber and babble as it charged at them. It was an easy battle, though the creature’s hide was tough, and they overwhelmed the beast and slew it regretfully. As they finished the battle they looked out over pond to see a shadowy creature of monstrous size moving slowly towards them. Foolish bravery left them and they fled, stumbling through the eerie forest until, in the early hours of morning, they stumbled out of the forest several miles from where they started and returned to town, posthaste.
They spoke briefly to the town guard once more, who could only point them to animal experts. They spoke of Eileen Cassidy, a priest of the Earthmother, and a woman named Holly Moorwalker.
The group retired after a long and stressful night and met up once more at the Wavecrest to begin their search in the safety of the daylight hours.
Level: 3 Exp: 525