The four of you (Teea and Mei are notably absent from the festivities) decide to eat dinner at the Rampant Reefclaw. The meal is a bit pricy but the place lives up to its reputation and provides a delicious meal. All total that bill was 12gp, 2sp, 3cp. That leaves you with 1037gp, 7sp, 7cp, before any other expenses. Any other equipment can be bought at Cove Armory for the normal price. Post any thing else you want to purchase. We will soon move on to the next morning unless there is any other business.
Drath came in resplendant black robe with no-nonsense polished black staff (which the party easily recognizes as the same travel-dusty staff from earlier, but made presentable. His hair and beard were clean and combed, maybe even oiled given the lush shine. His manners at the table are impeccable and he seems to know a lot of history of the area from personal experience.
One thing that comes across clearly is his hatred of undead. And fascination with the runes of power.
OOC: I will spend some money on new robes of at least fine quality (need to check the prices since I don't have party funds yet). He came dressed like the envoy of the dwarves he is
In preparation for a night of dining Shendra requests a hot bath be drawn up. She had used a basin in her room to clean up before, but the oracle wanted to be at her finest for the evening's meal. As befitting a woman of stature her preparations took some time, and perhaps tested the patience of her companions a little. But when she emerged from her room in the vividly red dress and silver and ruby jewels she had purchased in the Circle, that lustrous black hair bound in two places along its length and draped over her shoulder, Shendra was a sight to behold. "No need to stare," she said a bit coyly as she made her way out the door and to the modest carriage she had summoned so to spare the hem of her new clothes from the mud and the dirt of the streets.
Shendra savoured every bite of her meal that night, prepared personally by the Reefclaw's famous Unli Jevers, and every sip of the fine wine they had ordered with their meal. The night was not without some trials and mishaps; in this fancy and well to do establishment the whispers in her mind were very loud and persistent, and at one moment when she had let her guard down her fork slipped from her fingers, bounced off her plate, and skittered onto the floor, almost as if swatted by an invisible hand. But she politely laughed it off and waited patiently as a replacement utensil was delivered to the table. The conversation with her companions was good, and overhearing all of the little intrigues in town, was exciting as well.
But still there was one small voice that tugged at her that night, leaving her with a quiet feeling of unease, one easily concealed by her practiced expressions. Lunysh, the voice whispered. It was her conscience, her self. The bill for this merriment would be an appreciable share of all the monies she had thus far diverted to her family in Magnimar since her, well, "accident" . There was a familiar pang of guilt and sadness underneath her surface of her outward appearance. Maybe, once they had divvied up their haul properly, she would be able to arrange another anonymous delivery to her most estranged husband...
Michael comes back looking embarrassed from having to sell his old set of worn armor, but he is now looking like a professional warrior for a change. "I thought I'd trade in the ol' breastplate for a new set of banded mail. Maybe we can reduce using up some of those charges from the wand if I can better avoid getting smacked around."
OOC: How much to sell the old 200gp breastplate? Banded mail costs 250 gp.
As you gather the next morning, someone new has joined you. A young female human introduces herself as Michelle Tell, a cousin of Teea's. She lets you know that Teea has decided not to rejoin the group. Teea seems to have had enough excitement to last a while. She also tells you that Mei has also decided to pursue other things and won't be joining you either. Michelle nods to her uncle Michael. What are your plans for the day?
"Yes," says Shendra politely, offering greetings to Michelle. "Would I be mistaken to think your peculiar names share the same root?" she then asks. "No matter, I suppose. As long as I have known her Teea has had a penchant for experimenting with strange powders and weapons. I do not suppose your own talents are similarly outlandish?"
When they are finished with pleasantries the oracle suggests, "Supposedly the Port-Governor is available for meeting this morning. Once we have addressed the painting we recovered from Roderic's home we can inquire as to the extent of Cove Hall's public archives."
You head to see Port-Governor Larenza Thort at City Hall. At first Larenza seemed too busy to be bothered, but a few words from Shendra made her more helpful. Larenza notes that some town guards went missing recently in the Churlwood while searching for a pair of dwarves who were supposedly kidnapped by goblins, and with increasing tensions in town, she’s not eager to send more guards out into dangerous woodlands or haunted houses. She asks your group to investigate the missing guards and offers you 200 gold pieces for information about the missing guards. When asked about maps of the region she confirms that Sir Roderic was the best map maker in the area. After his confirmed death the then Port-Governor went to his house and claimed all of his maps for Roderic’s Cove. They can be found in Cove Hall. You will be allowed to examine the maps but cannot remove them from Cove Hall.
You are able to see several well made maps of the area. There is one that shows the area around Roderic’s Cove. On it is a odd seven-pointed star on a ridge in the Churlwood a few miles southeast of Roderic’s Cove. Teodor noticed something and decided to turn over the map. There is a diagram with runes that seem to be associated with another seven-pointed star. Each rune is rotated differently. You are able to easily make a copy of the diagram on the back of the map as well as a rough map of the location of the star on the map.
Roderic’s Cove sits on the northern bank of the Chavali River, and the Churlwood borders the river’s southern bank. The Chavali averages a thousand feet wide in this area, so swimming across is not the best option. You can charter a boat to ferry you across the river to the Churlwood at a cost of 2 gp for a one-way trip, or you could walk about a mile up the Chavali River to a spot where a bridge has been started and a Cove resident ferries people across for just a few coppers. Assuming you are ready to go to the Churlwood, which route do you take?
Shendra gives a slight sniff of distaste. "I know we just spent a whole lot of money on dinner but two gold crowns to save ourselves a twenty minute walk seems a bit, well, steep," the oracle replies. "Besides, if there has been trouble about it might not hurt to check in on the worksite and see that whoever is there is still hale and healthy."
"Let us go. The air is good for you. Look at me, two centuries and still going. Maybe we can see something on the way that doesn't include our bones over water." old dwarf climbs on his horse and clucks it into the motion
You head east along the banks of the Chavali River. As you travel the river gradually gets narrower until you reach the spot where the bridge was started. Here where the river grows shallow for a short stretch, twin rows of mismatched wooden pilings protrude from the water. This was originally intended to be the site of a bridge that would cross the river and continue the road south along the edge of the Churlwood, but plans for its construction fell apart after the pilings were driven into the river. Yet the Covers are tenacious, and rather than abandon this handy link to the south side of the river, a resident of the cove took it upon herself to set up a ferry service that uses a barge attached to a set of ropes hung between the pilings. You see an obviously old woman sitting in a comfortable chair. There is a small barge tethered to a small dock. As you get closer the woman smiles and waves to you. "Are you headed further up the river or are you headed to the south across the river?" Her smile gets bigger as she speaks about crossing the river.
"You have figured us out, yes, we mean to travel across the river," says Shendra politely. The seer takes a moment to glance around, "Are you out here by yourself? With the troubles in the area it seems a bit, well, risky."