‘Droth has decided to stay on the citadel with his ultimate grandfather Dargrim Shatterhand. The Shields leave the landed citadel to fly the 10 miles to Hammerfast, on the way discussing what their next move is to be.
They dock at the Gate Wards watchtower where Saran departs for her own business. Nesh plans to stop by the Academy with some resupplies, and heads off to acquire provisions. Grik headed for the Red Carpet Tavern to “see” Halva.
The circus CarniVale has set up in town in the market area outside the Red Carpet Tavern.
Still on board the Gleaming Endeavour, Shanna suddenly doubled over in pain as something horribly unnatural appeared within Hammerfast, somewhere within the main living area of Hammerfast.
Victoria and Berradin ran towards where Berradin sensed the disturbance. Shanna went to the tavern to get Grik.
Victoria ended up outside the Shatterhand ruins and waited for Berradin to catch up. A ghost custodian of the main concourse pointed out where a cloaked figure headed from the ruins.
Shanna arrives, then Victoria cracks a sunrod and enters the ruins with Berradin and Shanna. They find a blood circle, pretty fresh blood, which is coated in brimstone, and outside the circle a dwarven statue whose face is locked in a rictus of horror.
Berradin determines that something, most likely a Medusa, has been transported in from deep underground.
The shields exited the tomb and Shanna spotted a guard several hundred feet up the concourse acting suspiciously outside a laneway. Shanna snuck up on the dwarf and made her way into the alleyway where a watch-cleric was investigating the corpse of an Eladrin.
Berradin sent an arcane message to Mourn for reinforcements, who alerted Grik. Grik was shadowed by a brightly dressed boy, whom under closer inspection was a Halfling circus performer. He offered his assistance to Grik and followed him to the rest of the group.
The deceased Eladrin had been drained of his blood and his heart had been removed, most likely while he was still alive. The body had been dumped in the alleyway behind several bins and was lucky to have been discovered so quickly.
The ghost of the Eladrin, Thalanen, entered the alleyway through a wall and was interrogated by Victoria and Berradin. He had met a fellow Eladrin with bright Green bloodshot eyes, in the Red Carpet tavern, whom had bought him drinks and then he had blacked out. Thalanen had woken up in an underground area where the other Eladrin had changed shape back into a changeling/doppelganger and then made a new form, a tiefling with bright green bloodshot eyes. The “tiefling” had then cut the Eladrin and began to drain him of his blood. His last sight was the tiefling using some sort of instrument to crack open his ribcage to reach his still beating heart.
The Shields sent Shanna through Hammerfast on a grid search to find any green-eyed tiefling while the rest of the group headed back to the Red Carpet Tavern. Dinnan, the flamboyant halfling, searched through the tavern crowd and found a green eyed tiefling in a discussion with a heavily bearded, arcane armour wearing, magic tome carrying dwarf. He bluffed them into thinking that he had overheard their conversation and the dwarf offered him 10 Platinum [1000gp] to keep his mouth shut.
Meanwhile, Berradin questioned Mourn about any Eladrin customers from the previous night. He also mentioned that Mourn was a Dwarf, who became rather confused.
Grik had a conversation with Halva about her regular bouts of sickness. He had sought Rhianna’s advice and she had informed him that Halva was under a blood curse which would not harm her as long as she kept away from Grik. Grik questioned Halva about any potential enemies but Halva muttered something about “He wouldn’t, I thought he was joking” and refused to name names for Grik. Grik stormed downstairs in a foul mood. Halva then slipped down the stairs after him and snuck out of the tavern. Grik returned upstairs to find Halva and her equipment gone and raced downstairs to find out where she had went.
Grik saw Dinnan with the tiefling and dwarf and purposefully approached their table. He asked Ptolemus Ambershard if he knew who would have the knowledge to make a blood curse. Ptolemus said his wife Citrionna would have a better idea.
Victoria noticed Rhianna acting strange as Rhianna watched Grik running crazily around the tavern. Rhianna eventually fell to the floor, rolling around and laughing uproariously. When Victoria asked what was wrong Rhianna could barely brethe out “I can’t believe he fell for it” and then collapsed laughing again. Grik came over and Rhianna got off the floor, moving behind Victoria. Rhianna then told Grik that she had made up the story about a blood curse and that Halva was actually pregnant. She thought it was a marvellous prank to play, especially since Grik always picked on her sweety.
Grik headed for Ambershard Manor.
Grik sought an audience with Citrionna who informed him that the Mages of Saruun are masters of curses, particularly Aveed Zaar who was better known as the Squid king.
Grik thanked her and headed towards the main gates.
Meanwhile Shanna ‘s search led her to the Gate Ward and she found that a tiefling in a wagon had departed the city 30 minutes previously. She picked up the other Shields and they headed for the gate, running into Grik as he left the city.
Shanna roamed ahead of the group to follow the wagon and soon caught up with the old, creaking, arcane symbol covered conveyance. Between Shanna and the wagon was another traveller, Halva. Shanna got her attention and stopped her, they then waited for the rest of the group.
Grik told her of her pregnancy, to which she responded "who’s the father?" she then began laughing and embraced Grik while the rest of the party laughed at Grik’s hurt expression and reaction.
Unfortunately they had not moderated their sounds and Shanna noticed the cart had stopped ahead.
Shanna moved close and spotted someone in the fields some 300 feet away heading away from the wagon. Shanna gave chase.
The rest of the Shields approached the wagon and Grik opened the door. There was a magical darkness inside obscuring everything. He called out and then the darkness dropped. There was a cloaked figure with it’s head covered at the front of the wagon compartment holding a Longbow which had an arrow half-cocked dripping acidic venom.
Victoria called for the figures surrender but was rebuked. Berradin cast a flaming storm on the wagon front blowing up most of the wagon’s walls. The creature fired an arrow at Berradin in response, which invaded him with an hallucinogenic toxin which made him believe that his weapons/implements were covered in snakes, and he dropped them.
Grik began an avenging charge as the cloaked figures hood came loose and fell back revealing a Medusa. Grik froze in place and began a transformation into stone. Dinnan threw daggers and Victoria teleported behind the monster, stabbing it repeatedly, but she too began to succumb to the medusa’s horrific gaze power.
Dinnan acted quickly and blinded the monster giving the team a temporary respite.
Meanwhile Shanna had caught the “tiefling” and was marching him back to the wagon, on threat of painful death. Shanna began firing when within 200’ of the wagon as her companions fought off petrification and finally killed the medusa, her parting words were "Torog is not finished with you. He will get you algurgle gurgle splutter, as Dinnan threw a dagger into her throat. She then turned to stone.
They interrogated the tiefling , who returned to his changeling form, who informed them that he was on a mission to take the medusa to the fell court as a gift and infiltrate the, to get them to make a dimension sphere, a purple-blue artifact. The eladrin heart he had taken was in a strongbox which had melted in the battle.
The Shields discussed the threat and Berradin muttered Torog’s name many times, Berradin then collapsed and saw through Torog’s eyes, into a dark chamber filled with demonoids. Torog stated " The key, I have found them at last, now I know how to break this lock" and Berradin returned from his vision.
The Shields took the changeling to Hammerfast and turned him over to the guards, the sergeant on duty pointed out that they had a second one in protective custody, one they had found badly injured in an alleyway a day ago.
The Shields went with Dongal, a very dull guard, to the cells and found Thrax in a secure cell. Thrax had been discovered as an infiltrator of Torog’s cult by the other changeling, who could recognise his consciuos thoughts. The changeling had left him for dead, luckily Thrax had put his heart on the other side of his body.
The shields got Thrax out, went back to the red carpet tavern, and debated what to do next.
A flamboyant tiefling entered the tavern and approached them, sitting down amongst them, drawing a cup of ale and putting his feet up. he introduced himself as Danoffrio, the owner of CarniVale, and the person who had sent Dinnan to help them tonight. He was a friend of Mal and had become aware that the Fell Court had plans to kill her and the Shields. He had assigned Dinnan to help protect them, after he did his opening night’s performance. He invited all of them to see the show.
Dinnan put on a breathtaking acrobatic/knife-throwing performance while the Shields drank ale and shared sweetmeats with Danoffrio. He seemed to have his fingers in many pies and suggested that they seek out the court in Fallcrest with Dinnan’s help. They considered going to Fallcrest where the fell court’s main operation is located and try to draw out the fell court using Grik and some of the better known Shields as bait, to deal with their threat.
They also plan to go to the Academy and offer to use the skyship as a training boat for the academy, using some of it’s students as crew and giving them real world experience.