Wow today started out well! I tried to identify a potion (forgetting my vow) and immediately received 2 con drain. Needless to say, I will not be eating anything but bread and drinking water for a while. After this auspicious beginning we made it back to the trail and continued on to the lodge. Several times during the night we heard a rustling and saw creepy lights that looked like eyes (sometimes encircling us) but we were not attacked. The next day we came across a man with wolfsbane in his mouth and a silver dagger in his heart. When we all got close, Kelda triggered a trap and a bunch of silver tipped arrows shot Shiogi, Ronit, and Kelda. Kelda vows to have words with creator of trap (take the five crossbows). I also notice that presence of silversheen on the dagger and the arrows. We take the time to bury the body and continue on to the lodge.
We make it to the lodge late the next afternoon, and we are given some grief by the guards. We eventually talk our way through and we see a woodsman (Delgros) and a noble (Duristan) arguing. It turns out that Duristan wants to go on a werewolf hunt. Forthing for some reason decides to follow the hunting party. Kelda and Ronit choose the wise course and head to the inn to get settled. I set off with the hunting party to make sure Forthing does not get in trouble.
The hunting party gets in some trouble when they track some beasts that took the corpse of a elk. We track the beasts, find some direboars, and dispatch the beasts (Forthing finds out why he is not a front line fighter). We decide to spend the night, but Delgros goes back to the lodge (leaving sign’s as he goes).
Later that night when Kelda and Ronit show up they tell us of how nice the lodge is and how they got a invitation from Estovion (warden of the lodge) who apologized for the trouble at the gate. They also received a standing invitation to the personal library of Estovion. Kelda also relays that Lim Weftharper has shown up again and points out the Margrave, Markiza with her hound (who is our contact) and asks about if we know that there was a temple of Desna nearby.
After all this we hear a loud howling and a scream. We take off in that direction and we see two large werewolves carrying large swords. One of them starts talking about the silverhide pack, something sitting on a throne, supporting Malthus, and tells us not to meddle in wolf affairs and tells us to leave (we should have followed this advice). The fight went badly and Ronit was killed after trying to drag Forthing to safety.
It is decided that we need to get Ronit raised as soon as possible so we head back to the temple of Pharasma in Lepistadt. We talk to the judge, raise some money, raise Ronit and find out that the information that we might need is in Cortaud. Apparently there is some tribal structure of the wolves in the Shudderwood. We find that there are 5 packs and that some wolf called Sain is the “Lord of Wolves” (of the Vollensag tribe).
The wolves that we met were Vollensag (primitive descendants of the kellids), there are also the “Silverhide” or Mordrinacht tribe (aggressive, blend in with human communities, and their leader is named Malthus), the Prince’s wolves (brown and grey and oppose the Whispering Way), the Dorzhanev tribe (broken ones, act like wolves, small and red), and lastly the demonwolf tribe (Jezeldans) that were led by an antipaladin (black fur color). We also found out that they have a sacred place called the stairs of the moon or the high throne.
We then made our way back to the lodge. I finally made contact with our Palatine contact. He told me a halfling was asking about werewolves (Lim), Estovian is not reliable (would love to look in private library), and finally we set up a code if I need a meeting (LEAVE A COLORED BAG AT DOG PENS).
We find out that we can see the library in two days, then we decide to consult the weejee board. (2 knocks: evil spirit inhabiting lodge, 3 knocks: Lodge haunted, 4 knocks: ghost in lodge).
I also see a note in my pack that says “Beware the wolves that watch the woods, they see all, but leave no trace.”
Lim makes known to us that she will pay us if we find any information that links the temple of desna and the origin of the various wolf tribes.
We find out that Mari Sirinov has just left the lodge and headed to Thrushmoore.
Also, Delgros goes ahead and shows us all the exotic animals that he has available to hunt. One of them is a Giant Spider.
We do hear tales about Herik Ariesir (Duristan’s older brother) who was killed by a vicious attack (tore him and guards to pieces) which happened 10 years ago. We also hear about a noble that died 20 years ago, and yet another minor noble that died 28 years ago. We think that Herik was killed because of his political support of the Palatinate movement.
Finding this all out we consulted the weejee board again.
1 knock (Do you know anything to help in search of lodge)
1 knock (Herik killed by wolf spirit)
1 knock (someone summoned or controlled the wolf spirit)
2 knocks (Connected to whispering way)
We also find out that Duristan left the day after we did (come to find out that Forthing had been spreading rumors again!).
After this we went around and asked about Vrood. Kelda went to the fortune teller (had her fortune read (will have conflict with old acquaintance who has changed, beware older noble houses, and was seen fighting a werewolf)). Vrood also had a letter of introduction from a very highly placed individual. Vrood then saw a courtesan, we were able to set an appointment with the same lady (was very sought after in Cortaud apparently).
Meanwhile Ronit discovered that the Stairs of the Moon are haunted by vengeful spirits, and the temple was destroyed by agents of the Whispering Tyrant.
A note appeared under Forthing’s door which read “Some secrets better left uncovered. Leave before you fall prey to its curse!”
While Kelda was talking to the Margrave at dinner he said that he was concerned over an acquaintance Echtmoor Dravin who has not arrived yet at the lodge.
Kelda relayed what happened to Mr. Dravin (eaten by weaver worm) and promised us a reward tomorrow. He also told us that he was in the lodge 10 years ago when Herik was killed. He disagreed with him over the Palatinate, but he was able to verify that there were no witnesses, he was enemies with the old aristocracy, and it was unfortunate that Duristan became the heir. He also relayed a trick for listening in on conversations. We told him of everything we had heard about the wolves and he was intrigued. If we come across more information (specifically troop movements) he would be interested.
Forthing and Estovion had a talk about spreading rumors (what happens in vegas stays in vegas).
Then screams erupt.h1. GIANT SPIDER RELEASED!
We felled the spider, and then found that the lock on the spider cage was smashed (groundskeeper was arrested).
While the attack was happening Lim snuck into Estovion’s Library and found a passage about an artifact called the Duskmoth which is linked to the Stairs of the Moon.