Recap by Mike Mason. Food Hamburgers.
We picked up walking down the strange road. An eight inch tall man stepped forth to block the progress of the party. In a rhyming speech, he told them they had to answer his riddles three. They accepted the challenge, and answered the riddles with nary a pause. They pressed on and met a strange cloaked figure. She never gave a name, nor was asked, but in exchange for 10 gp per character, guided them to the dark fey realm and back to the fey road.
The characters came upon an in-progress ritual, neither knowing nor caring about it’s purpose they decided to put an end to it. Against eight wolves, the Big Bad Wolf, and apparently the Dark Fey Queen, the party fared not well. Things began looking grim, but after the completion of the ritual the dark queen disappeared, which apparently signaled the wolves and BBW to depart, not caring about the group… Though BBW did something to Felix before leaving. Inside the ritual circle Gabrielle recovered a Longsword with a crystal or diamond in the hilt, and some treasure from an altar.
The group, counting their blessings, recovered the seven young girls, and returned henceforth to town.
Upon clearing the forest, they saw Merrick in an epic battle with a fearsome colossal dragon. The dragon won apparently by crushing and then suffocating the old man before flying away, possibly in confusion, or meandering…
The group knew something was amiss, when they couldn’t find the manor with their access rings. Liam departed to contemplate this deep loss, while the rest delivered the young girls to the church to heal them and return them to their folks. The group was rewarded handsomely for their troubles. Yon was given a suit of Masterwork Full Plate; Liam never collected his reward; Harold was given a bandoleer of daggers (two of which are masterwork); Felix was given a masterwork chain shirt; Gabrielle got two masterwork daggers, and a masterwork short sword.
Deciding to let Liam in on his share of the reward, they tracked him down. They were met with a page with a letter to have them all join Duchess Chi for dinner and preparations for the upcoming wedding. A partial message of foreboding was delivered by the Insubstantial Butler. They met at Duchess Chi’s. A strange sight of white small simians piqued Liam’s curiosity. After dinner, Liam returned upstairs to his suite, but with a feeling of trepidition turned around, only to find a dagger buried in his gut. (Liam dropped to 1 HP and stunned for three rounds). Felix came upon this strange sight, and seeing blood accosted the assassin before he could finish off Liam. A warning from the Butler sent the group scrambling, and Felix brought Yon directly to the fight. With Gabrielle and Harold showing up, the battle quickly turned against the apparently inept assassin (WHO KEPT CRIT FAILING). Harold and then Gabrielle finished the poor fellow off. The rest of the estate guards appeared. Liam bent over and searched the fallen assassin; meanwhile, another guard cries out in pain and then pointing to a group on a roof, shouts ‘Assassins!’ and then the present guards leave to chase down the criminals (READ: the other party – group A). They are ushered to a safe room and then return later to find the suite has been robbed in their absence – the drapes, silverware and other valuables.
Liam pulls Gabrielle aside and confesses his lack of love for the duchess. Realizing he can speak freely, he figures the duchess is dead and barges in on his sleeping “wife”. She assures him everything is okay, and puts off his confession of not loving her. She manages to convince him to at least attend the wedding to say no.
The next day, the public wedding is held. Felix spots an assassin in the rafters and kills him before he can kill the duchess. Liam says no to the “I do” spot, and is surprised when Chi says “No, I choose him” and points to a guy that looks similar to Liam. She is wed, and there is a reception. Liam is given a gift of Wrist Wraps from the now married Duchess.
We end at 5:30pm and commenced leveling everyone to level 3.
By Mike Mason:
When last we left, we were entering the archway, and the scenery changed.
As we walk down the road, a diminutive guy with a piping voice blocks the road challenging us with three riddles. They are answered, and an archway appears. Another change of scenery, this time to a forest with sparkly! berries and dewdrops on pristine foliage. There is a dark robed figure to the side of the path. Felix greets the figure, who turns out to be a woman. She explains the path is hard to find without being on it, and that the man with red eyes is the servant to the dark one. She asks 10g each to guide us to him and back to the path afterwards. Small red eyes follow us from the canopy of the forest. She stops and says she’ll wait for us. We hear chanting. Yon requests the sneaks sneak.
There is a circle of wolves around a circle of seven young girls standing on arcane symbols headed by a thin lady who looks Russian. The big bad wolf is behind them. The kids have had their wrists slit. Gabrielle throws a dagger which misses the woman.
Initiative! Gabrielle moves west, and the wolves (and Harold) follow. Liam, Felix, and Yon move north to approach wolves. The wolves attack the two groups, Yon breaks free to go north and grab some girls, as does Harold, but Felix and Gabrielle are downed. Yon moves back toward Gabrielle with some of the girls, and Harold follows. Liam moves to the girls but the Big Bad follows. Yon stabilizes Gabby, gives her two of the girls, and moves to Felix, healing him. Liam investigates a wolf while the rest head toward the guide. Gabby sees something shiny, so she goes to try and pull it out. She tries to dig the white gem, and digs the rest of it, it’s a sword with a gem on the hilt actually. She pulls the sword. Liam kills the wolf he investigated by burning it. We found a coin pouch with 300 gold and a couple of jewels. Yon coup de grace kills the other wolf.
The guide asks “are you ready to return?” and Harold describes the woman we saw. The guide calls her the “Dark Queen.” She leads us back to the gate, we appear back on the path, and go back to the mushroom ring.
The team sees the fight between a huge dragon and Merrick, where the dragon falls – onto Merrick. Gabrielle shouts “NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!” And there’s no more Merrick when the dragon flies off.
Everybody’s trying to take the girls to the church. Everybody is healed. Liam walks off. The captain of the guards rewards us with full plate for Yon, Harold got 10 daggers, Felix wants masterwork chain shirt, Gabrielle wants some masterwork daggers and a masterwork lock pick set. Liam is found later, and we tell him about the rewards and his chance to get one. Duchess Chi summons Liam by messenger. Liam tries to tell him to bugger off, but he cries instead. Gabrielle says “I’m gonna read your mail!” She reads about the “special day” and is indignant about the fact that it’s been too soon since Merrick left us. A wispy figure kinda like the butler gives us a message we think is from Benley, and it says “you need to leave” but is cut off afterward.
So, the party reluctantly go to Chi’s estate. At dinner, the butler materializes after Liam and Felix leave and says “danger” then disappears. As Harold searches for what happens to the monkeys he is stabbed by a man with a red goatee… and dropped to 1 hit point. Felix finds Liam, and teleports Yon to the scene, as the goateed man throws a dagger at Yon but missing badly. Yon charges him. Gabrielle and Harold make it upstairs, and charge the man, Gabrielle taking him down. As everybody is inspecting the downed man, and the hurt Liam, a guard in the room is hit from a force attack. A special dagger is found on Liam’s attacker. Everybody is shunted to another room, and we find a note that says “there is an assassin in your midst.” Liam pulls Gabby aside and tells her he can’t go through with it. Then he realizes she must be dead because he CAN say she can’t go through with it. He runs to her room and strikes the door in, goes in and sees a veiled woman, who won’t let him lift her veil. He tells her he won’t be at the wedding. In the morning, he tells everybody he won’t be in the wedding. The chinaman tells Liam that if he goes to the ceremony and participates he can say “no.”
At the performance, Liam asks Yon to stand by him at the wedding. A crossbow sniper fires and misses someone near the walkway to the wedding. Felix notices, and psychic blasts the sniper. Gabrielle darts up to the rafters to find more people. Harold follows, and identifies the body as a young asian guy. The wedding continues, and Liam says “no”, then chi says “no” and points to a man that comes forth from the shadows, and excuses liam. (he looks just like him) And the rest of the wedding goes off without a hitch. Liam gets a present, some handwraps with a light enchantment on it.
We gain level 3! WOOT WOOT!