The Secrets Below
OOC: The following is a tiny summary / recap of what happened during the week. Note that PCs who couldn't make it do not know all these details, because the participants were asked in all ceremony and gravity not to tell anyone else. This is for your OOC enjoyment, reassurance that what you missed out on won't deprive you of fun to come, and as teaser; but, it is also to acknowledge the PCs and players during Holy_Rage's quest, and to be able to look back to this fondly one day. Note that the descriptions are still kept vague so as not to spoil the fun of discovering locations, monsters, etc.
Edited because I was bound to foolishly forget a name.
13th of Nightal, 1362DR
Hróin the Old Beard, the Mountain Grinch, the Ever-Frown, the Seeker, meets with his crew-to-be at the (almost) nameless village of Vlasta. From here he will set out with his Apprentice Ms. Pine, his kinsman Azarbuzlar Stahl, Perry Quietfoot, Sagi the Minstrel, Faile Loomgold, Barnabis Bullroy (and his hammer, Bolgamor), the resourceful Amber Tunnelfarer, and Kallian and Celith Galiner, two elves-sparse-of-words.
They leave the village with shovels, torches, rations, camping equipment, and much more bulging on two donkeys' backs, drawn by the local Sarja who comes with the group in the hopes of earning sturdy coin.
The expeditioners disappear into the foothills and are not seen again for several days.
In the tunnels to come they meet giant vermin, whose carapaces are hard, but not hard enough to push back the group. Battles ensue and finally a camping site is set up within the caves and safety is achieved; but at a cost. The white-beard Azarbuzlar pays to the giant chitinous hosts with his life.
14th of Nightal, 1362DR
The expeditioners are followed into their camp by two newcomers; sir Jerek of the Warswords and the elf calling herself 'Dove'. One offers to assist, the other to stay, and in this manner one white-haired companion is seemingly replaced with another - because Jerek brings Azarbuzlar's heavy body away from the caves and to the healers of the lowlands, while Dove stays with the group.
The Delvers Deep leave the makeshift campsite soon enough and head for the tunnels again. They meet more dangerous giant vermin, but no more ally falls to their pincers or spittle; the group instead finds an orc and other corpses.
Many steps farther they arrive at their destination, farther underground. They are greeted by an unbearable, red heat, and by steadfast gates... of dwarven work.
14th-16th of Nightal, 1362DR
The Delvers Deep are taken in by dwarves, who are well-armed and well-accustomed (indeed, perhaps born for) the conditions down below. They receive the expeditioners with stern but righteous hospitality. It is here that the group is asked to pledge not to speak of what they have found and what they are going to see soon enough; the dwarves do not want their location, nor their very existence, known by outsiders.
Dealing with the dwarves would have taught much to the group about them as a people, and about Hróin, their leader, as a person. While both the people and the single dwarf were taciturn and held their secrets close to heart, it was also clear that they held honour and responsibility utmost high, and the importance they gave words - and silences - was immense.
For the coming few days the group rests, recovers and plans in the dwarves' stoney care. On the 15th a deal is struck; on the 16th, members of the group escort the Vlastan wagoneer, Sarja, out whence they'd come while other members scout 'the Way', ahead.
17th of Nightal, 1362DR
With the deal agreed upon by all, and the expeditioners regathering in full attendance, the missive continues. The dwarves make promises of payment and in exchange want the Delvers Deep to clear the tunnels ahead, so that the dwarves might consider reopening a trading route down that way (after a few recent collapses and earth-heavings, which the dwarves remarked to be unusual).
The Delvers Deep get one dwarven escort to their retinue and they venture forth. The labyrinthine, worming tunnels were difficult to navigate even with a Stout scout to guide them, and dangerous.
Still - without mishaps worthy of mentioning - the group emerged by the end of day to the surface, not far from Vlasta. They were greeted by a setting sun; a symbol to the expedition's end. For now...
A final gathering is held at The Drunken Carp, Vlasta's inn, and Hróin doles out the shares that were promised for the expeditioners. Locals would have seen the relief of returning safely on their faces, but on some also a grim discontent, a tension with the dwarf who had led them through safely. Still, all take their appointed share, and the unspoken promise hung in the air - they, or at least Hróin, would return to the depths soon enough.
Last edited by Copper Dragon
on Fri Dec 18, 2015 6:02 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Artemis D'Assanthe, Dawnmaster
Udhana, the Kinless
Dhovainithil, Silver Elf
Jhasira of the Bai Kabor, Dawnbringer (deceased)