Re: Standar

May 23rd, Session Two.

Session 2

There was a loud twang as Bex opened up the door, looking down she noticed the bolt protruding from her chest. Going into a rage she rushed into the room. The first thing she noticed was the lead dwarf reloading his crossbow, along with two of the dwarves from his party holding two girls as hostage, blades to their throats. A loud muffled cry rang out from behind them, even more girls were in the room, the missing girls!

After seeing Bex take the bolt to the chest Innathia immediately let out a healing touch, trying to staunch the bleeding before the barbarian bleed out. Seeing that this fight was going to be up close and personal he drew his saber and shield and rushed the lead dwarf, putting himself in the mix of all three dwarfs.

Following Bex and Innathia into the room Bast entered just in time to see the dwarves cut down their captives, he noticed that the one on the left was Hansu’s middle daughter. Letting out a yell, Bast shrouded himself in the cold powers of his patron, fortifying himself for the fight to come.

Bringing up the rear Thrandiul saw the dead human girls at the feet of their dwarven captives, having seen the cruelty the world has to offer he was not surprised, nonetheless a cold fury lit up inside him. Vowing a silent curse at his stunted foes, Thrandiul raised his staff and electric power shot out arcing over the head of his allies towards the dwarves.
The lead dwarf took another shot at the Seraphim rushing at him but the shot stuck fast into his shield, cursing in dwarvish he drew his battle axe and braced himself. Seeing the girl’s bodies hit the ground and the dwarves all around him, Innathia took a swing at the lead dwarf, a loud clang rang out as his sword scrapped against the armored dwarf, failing to penetrate. The dwarf to his right took a swing as he saw the assault upon his leader slicing into the meat of Innathia leg.

Bex took a large swing at the dwarf to her left, nearly frothing with her rage, the dwarf brought up his axe parrying her first wild swing and jabbed the pommel into her gut, knocking the wind from her. Not deterred by the dwarves’ attack Bex took another swing, but failed to connect again. Letting out a blood curdling roar Bex went into a true rage, foam and spittle flying from her mouth as she sent her boot out connecting with the dwarfs’ face knocking him prone. Following up with a downward arc that cleaved into his chest, but in her frenzied state she continued to hack into the body, delimbing the corpse and splattering blood all across the room and the captive girls. Seeing the giants brutal assault, the girls saw their saviors possibly turn to a worse fate.

Ducking another swing from the lead dwarf, Innathia changed his focus to the dwarf to his right, finding purchase with his sword as it bloodied his foe. But in doing this he left himself open for a wide cleaving attack that caught him in the shoulder. Letting out a yell his shield arm drooped, giving the other dwarf time to turn and swing his axe putting into Innathia’s leg again. Cursing his rash decision, Innathia could do nothing else but try to survive and hope his allies worked fast.

The room strobing with the electric beam coming from Thrandiul attack, Bast rushed in and thrust his spear at the dwarf, all the while lamenting their rash actions, leading to the deaths of the two girls. As his spear connected a loud boom emanated from his spear and lighting began circling around the dwarf. The dwarf was splitting blood as his wounds were starting to take its toll on him. But unable to get his full attention, the dwarf was intent on ending the threat to his master. As Bast prepared for another thrust, he saw the axe connect with Innathia chest, his leg and shield arm already bloodied. With this final attack, he slumped to the ground in a growing pool of blood.

Despite the Seraphim going down, the odds seemed too great for the lead Dwarf. He watched as the Sea Giant brutally hacked apart, Heiok, his third cousins husband and best damn fiddler player in his troupe, and the constant assault from the cursed spell slinger, he decided it would be most prudent to protect his most important asset, himself. Turning tail and running, he ran straight towards the wall behind him towards the flag of the Underbelly. Plowing through the tapestry it revealed a tunnel and he continued to run into the darkness.

With the lead dwarf going out of range of his witch bolt, Thrandiul turned his attention to the last dwarf, blasting him with a ray of frost that finished off the dwarf. With that the battle was over, but what to do now? One ally down, a room full of captives, and an enraged Sea Giant intent setting a new record for how many hacks it took to get to the center. Probably best for the human to deal with his friend, Thrandiul decided to stay back and see how things played out, trying to figure out if this was really something he wanted to get caught up in, these dwarfs seem to be no more than petty criminals, hardly the type who would lead him to true power.

Bast took a deep breath and took in the situation in the room, torn between following the dwarf and helping his allies. Seeing Bex in one of the worst frenzies he had ever seen decided for him, rushing over to calm her down. “Bex! It’s done, it’s done.” Reaching out he put his arm on his shoulder, confident that his friend wouldn’t lash out at him. As he did so Bex brought up her axe again, glaring at Bast, as recognition flashed in her eyes, her breathing started to calm and she lowered her weapon.

Looking around at what she had done, she breathed in deep and seemed to reconcile the fact, she knew there was a deep anger in her, but this was unlike the other episodes. Finally, close to calm, her hands still shaking, she looked back down at Bast. “Thank you.” Bast meet her eyes and nodded.

Rushing to the fallen Innathia, Bast set to stabilizing him, seeing the severity of his wounds the most he could do was bandage him up temporarily, he would need a healer before he would be good again. Regaining conciseness Innathia opened his eyes and looked at Bast, giving a nod and laying his head back to rest.

With Bex calmed, and Innathia stable, Bast intended to free the girls and see if any information could be found out. But as he began to search for a key he heard familiar loud twang followed by a scream.

Caught off guard in his contemplation, Thrandiul luckily took the bolt in the shoulder and it didn’t hit anything vital. Angry at himself for his lack of concentration Thrandiul turned and looked at his attacker. The dwarf dropped his crossbow and took out his great axe, letting out a yell as he charged the Nephilim. Thrandiul raised his hand and let out another ray of frost at the dwarf, impacting in his chest it slowed the dwarf but didn’t take it down.

Following the sound of the cry Bast entered the hallway were the skirmish was going on, seeing the dwarf charging at Thrandiul, he raised his arm knowing that he didn’t have time to make it into melee range and cast. A dark beam shot out connecting with the dwarf’s face, a loud rang out and the dwarfs head was thrown back, broken by the impact.

Slumping to the ground as the final dwarf fell, Bast sat down and rested for a second. So many foolish decisions, he let his desire for vengeance overcome his better judgement and the group almost died, along with the two girls. Next time would be different he vowed. Standing him he started releasing the girls, most still hysterical because of Bex’s demonstration. He saw two of the girls who he recognized as Hansu’s daughters rush to their fallen sister, cradling her body in their arms and sobbing. He gave them a few minutes to grieve for their fallen sister before kneeling down beside them.

“I am sorry for your loss, we failed you, and for that I vow the people responsible for this will pay.” Looking up from their sister the two nodded at Bast before speaking. “You guys did what you could, it is better we died then seen what they had planned for us.” The one who looked to be the eldest said.

“Is there, is there anything you know that could help us? Did you hear or see anything?” In between sobs the girls replied, “No, for the most part they left us here chained up, only coming in the evening when they brought in new girls and to feed us. And when they were here they spoke in dwarvish.” Bast simply nodded at this before replying “Thank you, we will help you make it home to your father.”

Agreeing to come back and search the house when everyone was fully rested, Bex took Innathia to a healer to have his wounds seen to. Meanwhile Bast escorted Hanus’s daughter home, carrying their fallen sister back to her father. Promising to come back when he knew more, Bast left them to grieve.

Refusing to be taken to a healer Innathia had Bex take him back to where he was staying, claiming that he could treat himself. Exhausted Bex agreed to no healers, but didn’t trust the Seraphim to not die on them if left alone, and took his slumbering form back to their camp. As Innathia continued to rest she sat near the fire waiting for Bast to return. A couple hours later a weary Bast arrived, sitting near the fire with a glazed look in his eyes. We were all tested tonight thought Bex, and she wasn’t sure if they had passed.

Day 4

The next day the group met up again at the slavers hideout. As they entered they noticed that everything had been left undisturbed, no one had entered since they were last here. Entering the tunnel with Innathia leading the way, Bast realized something was, odd. There was no light in the tunnel that he could see and yet he had perfect vision, he could clearly see Innathia stealthily scouting out the tunnel. While they waited for Innathia to return, he contemplated these changes, clearly the voice was responsible for the changes, but still it did not speak.

As Innathia crept along the tunnel, there was no discernable tracks. While no expert it was apparent that this tunnel was relatively new, and this was proven when he stumbled upon a new tunnel which was more developed and lead in either direction, one path leading east, the other west. After spending several minutes further investigating the cavern he doubled back to his team. This was getting more interesting by the day.

Bex was looking into the darkness that was the tunnel when Innathia’s form emerged out of the darkness. “What did you find?”

“The tunnel is new, it connects to a much older tunnel further in, but it splits in two heading east and west. The dwarf could have gone either way.” After speaking Innathia went up to the manacles along the wall inspecting them, that curious gleam in his eye as he appraised them. “We should investigate but go cautiously, there’s no way of knowing what’s down there.” He concluded off handedly.

The team took this in as they thought of what to do next. “I agree.” The group turned to look at Thrandiul, surprised at the elf’s words. Seeing the surprised looks Thrandiul glared back defensively, “What? I want these bastards to pay for what they’ve done, there is enough cruelty in the world without these slaving bastards making it worse.”

Nodding in agreement the group prepared to set out. But before they could Innathia asked out, “Wait, with our heritage we can see down there without a light source,” Nodding towards Thrandiul, “But what of you two? I’d like to keep from having to light a torch, further alerting whatever is down there.”

“I will be fine, and Bex can hold onto me. If anything comes up then we can make a light.” Bast said, not offering an explanation more than that.

“Fair enough” Innathia said looking at Bast curiously, “Let’s get started then. And this time lets to it a tad more quitter, eh?” At that he stealthily set out down the tunnel.

Following Innathia down the tunnel, the group decided to go west, discerning that it would lead further into the city. Not far from where they set out they noticed a second tunnel branch out but this time it led to what appeared to be a cave in.

“This must be where the goblins came from, so the dwarves were behind the Tiefling slaves.” Bast said.

Continuing heading west they came upon some stairs that lead up. Innathia motioned for quit as he walked up them until he came upon a bared grate that was lock. Picking the lock, he opened it and tried to see if he could notice anything. To his surprise he heard what was distinctly the bells going off at the cathedral to Norvel. Shocked by this revelation he slipped the grate back down and doubled back to his party.

“Were at the cathedral!” He whispered to the group. “The bloody cathedral!”
The group was quit as they considered this new revelation until Bast spoke up. “We should continue back the other way and see where that tunnel leads. If the Underbelly is working with Luhi we need to gather more information before hastily proceeding.”

Doubling back the group eventually found another set of stairs leading up, this time a bright was leaking through. Opening the grate and finding it unlocked they found themselves beyond the city walls, surrounded by stones that cleverly hid the gate.

“This must be how the goblins got in.” Thrandiul stated as he looked around. Perhaps he was wrong, there was obviously something bigger going on with the Underbelly and possibly the church of Norvel then he originally thought. Turning back to his party, “Well what next? An assault upon the most heavily armed church in the city?”

“I think we should first re asses our funds, see if we can get any better bear for this endeavor. Also, tonight is supposedly the night a guard goes missing. We promised Hank that we would look for his sister.” Innathia stated. “Not to mention I have a certain, delivery, I am waiting for.”

Bast and Bex considered this, noting the ragged state their gear was in they found themselves in agreement. “Very well, let’s be about it.”

For the next several hours the group set about fencing the items they had confiscated from their fights. Innathia leading them from one shady dealer to the next. Clearly his ties went deeper then both of them thought.

As the day neared its end the group decided to split up and watch the main guard patrols, remembering that Hank had said one of the guards would disappear and the other would wake up with no memory of what had happened. They split into two groups, Bex and Bast taking the Northern patrol, while Thrandiul and Innathia headed south.

Clinging to the shadows Bex and Bast were following two guards on their patrol. “Damn place gives me the chills.” Bex whispered to Bast.

Bast motioned for silence before whispering back. “These guys are on high alert, so try to keep it down because I don’t want to be accidently run through.” Chagrined at his reprimand Bex continued to mutter under her breath as the patrol continued along. Soon they made a turn and went out of sight, forced to move from their position Bast and Bex darted to the next building to catch up. Bast easily melded with the shadows, his time as a hunter in the desert giving him the skills to move stealthily. Bex unfortunately wasn’t as skilled, her lumbering form doing her best to keep low and stealthily. As she was rushing across the street a yell came out “Halt!”

The guards came rushing at her swords drawn. “What are you doing out at this time, were you tailing us?” the first guard responded brandishing his sword. He was clearly on edge and not happy with catching this giant foe stalking them in the middle of the night.

Caught at a crossroad Bex knew there was two ways she could handle this, easily take out the guards, or comply. But due to the nature of their mission she wasn’t sure if a fight was the best course. Breathing deeply to calm herself she addressed the guards. “Look, we are trying to help. We have heard that guards are going missing and we thought we could help. Do you know Hank? He sent us here to look for his sister.”

The guards continued to glare at her, and looked at each other and nodded. One put her sword away and brought out a pair of manacles. “If what you say is true, then you have nothing to hide and will come with us to be put in holding until we can determine the truth from lies.”

Bex felt the call of her axe, but sighed and lowered her arms. “Very well, but you are making a mistake.” She allowed herself to be manacled and let them lead her towards the prison. Still in the shadows Bast let out a long string of curses, but at least this way it narrowed down which guards to watch. They could free Bex in the morning. Decided he set out to catch up with Innathia and Thrandiul.

The pair sat on top of a rooftop, patiently watching the guards make their rounds. As they were watching they felt a presence coming upon them, “Hail Bast, where is Bex?” Not surprised that the pair had noticed him Bast settled down next to them. “She was arrested by the watch. We will have to retrieve her tomorrow, but now we know which set of guards to watch.”

“Well so far there’s been nothing exciting, this is a wasted evening.” Innathia said, “We could have had one of my people on this while we did something more productive.”

Just as he said this they heard something, someone was speaking in what was clearly magic, and with it both guards slumped to the ground. As soon as they hit the ground four hooded figures scampered over to them. Two picked up one of the sleeping guards while the other two stood guard.

“Well damn, this is why the other guard never remembers anything. We have to follow them.” Thrandiul said.

In agreement, the party stealthily followed the group. The hooded figures lead them to the wall to the zero district and seemingly walked right through the wall. “What? No one goes to the zero district!” Thrandiul whispered, “It must be a glamour, give me a second to divine what kind of magic is at work here.”

As he started casting, Bast was feeling along the wall and nearly fell onto his face as his hand passed through what seemed like a solid wall. “I think I found it.”
“Well that works too,” muttered Thrandiul.

“Wait!” whispered Innathia, “Should we continue without Bex? This could go bad really quick.”

“We have no choice, we must proceed. Whatever is happening to the guards they are never seen again. And it won’t be for another week that whoever is responsible will be out again.” Bast said, “We can handle this.”

“Very well,” said Thrandiul. With that the group slipped through the magical wall. On the other side what they saw shocked and appalled them…

View
May 16th, Session One.

Day 1

Bast Sa-Darr is hunting for information regarding The Underbelly, a group of slavers who are responsible for the death of his family and forcing him to work as a slave for five years. As he enters the Greedy Worm, a tavern located in the abandoned district, he immediately spots a group of five dwarves that he has never seen before. Bast slips Grygaa five silver, and asks who the dwarves are.

Grygaa looks at the money and then back at the human sitting at his bar. “No idea, they just came in yesterday.” Not forthcoming with any more information Grygaa walks off to attend to other customers.

Cursing under his breath Bast glances back at the dwarves and sees an empty table nearby. Moving so as to not attract attention Bast slips down at the table and continues to drink his beer, trying to get a better look at the group and possibly overhear anything. While listening in Bast notices a couple of the city guards talking to two mysterious figures, both of them features and speaking in low tones, nothing out of place in the Greedy Worm. Returning his focus back to the dwarves Bast sees some kind of marking on the lead dwarf, but it is obscured by his shirt, it seems familiar but Bast can’t place what it is. Deciding to see if the dwarves go anywhere Bast orders another round and continues to wait.

Across town, near the docks, Thrandiul sits down at the Snuggly Duckling, the only establishment in all of Port Durst that can manage to cook up a meal that was more than just commoner slop, barely. After berating the staff for their audacity for having a brunch special on a Wednesday, when everyone knows brunch is Sunday, Thrandiul notices a commotion happening outside, a large crowd and several of the city guards are making a ruckus, interrupting his meal and blocking the view of the sea. Angry but not caring enough to investigate Thrandiul continues to eat his breakfast, contemplating how to combat the boredom that this city seems to specialize in.

Bex pulled herself up onto the dock, smiling broadly and giving thanks to Riternal for his wondrous ocean. Realizing that her morning swim went longer than planned, Bex began to head to the Greedy Worm where she was supposed to meet Bast Sa-Darr. While on her way she noticed a large commotion near the church of Riternal. Bex lumbered over to see what was going on, easily pushing herself through the crowd, not sure if it was because of her giant stature or the great axe on her back, but she soon found herself witnessing a couple city guards putting the priest of Riternal in chains. Recognizing her friend Ket Bran-Kel being arrested Bex casually walked over to the guards who eyed her with apprehension.
“Is there trouble here gentlemen? What transgressions could a priest of Riternal have done to deserve to be put in chains, and his chapel boarded up?”

Still wary of the sea giant glowering over them the first guard spoke “This man is being arrested for speaking against Lord Luhi Ali-Eba, which is to speak against Norvel.”
Bex shifts her eyes from the guards to Ket, seeing nothing but defiance in his eyes she smiles to herself. “Well if he’s a trouble maker why don’t you give him to me, I swear for this man and will make sure he causes no harm.” As she spoke, Bexs put her hand on her great axe and standing to her full height.

The guards glanced at each other nervously, “Fine, but he’s your problem now and if word gets back to us that he’s up to his old ways then you will be seeing us again.”
As the guards walked away Bex turned her attention back to Ket, “What was that about? Are you going to be ok?”

Ket glances back at the church being bordered up and then back at Bex, “Yes I shall be fine, I would be lying if I said I didn’t see this coming.”

Bex laughs, “So what they said is true then? You are causing problems?”
Surprised by her levity Ket can’t help but smile too, “Yes what they say is true, but it is because I care for Port Durst that I speak out. Luhi is leading this city to ruin, all he cares for is power and will stop at nothing to get it. His praise of Norvel is just an excuse to do as he wants. He used to be a cleric of Riternal, back when we were young, but changed when an opportunity of advancement came. Now he uses the order as his own army.”

Bex looks back at the guards considering, “Well if you need help again, don’t hesitate to call for aid. Only a fool would tempt Riternal’s wrath, and know that you do not stand alone.” Ket smiles at Bex and thanks her for her help.

Having finished his morning chores Innathia deciding to check up on his contacts and see if any new developments had turned up, and there was no better place to do this then the Greedy Worm. Upon entering the Worm, he immediately noticed several new faces, such as the group of dwarves talking in low voices, and the cloaked figures talking to a couple of the guards. Interesting, very interesting. As he was ordering his ale he continued to scan the room, immediately noticing Bast Sa-Darr, a human Innathia had talked to on a couple of occasions, Bast was sitting at a table by himself situated between both of the peculiar parties, in what he assumed was supposed to be in a stealthy manner. Seeing in opportunity Innathia thanked Grygaa, who gave his usual scowl back, and walked over to sit next to Bast.

“Evening Bast, how’s the morning treating you?” Surprised by his sudden company Bast glanced up from his beer.

“Hello Innathia,” After taking another drink from his beer Bast leans forward and speaks to Innathia in a low tone. “What can you tell me of the dwarves? Grygaa says they just got in yesterday.”

Knowing that Bast had been in town looking for information regarding The Underbelly for several months, it was an easy connection for Innathia to make that he suspected these dwarves of being part of the organization. “At the moment, nothing. But give me some time and I will get my contacts and network on it. Someone out there knows something. I’ll get back to you when I have more information.” Innathia finished his beer and left.

Deciding that he was tired of waiting, Bast decided to take a more upfront approach. He stood up and stumbled over to the dwarves acting drunker then he was.

“Evening gentlemen! Don’t see many dwarves in Port Durst, Hail and well met! What bring you to this corner of the world?” Slurring over his words and swaying as he spoke.

The dwarves glanced at each other and then back at the drunken human at their table. The dwarf who looked to be the leader of the group spoke back in common. “Were camel traders, and if you don’t mind this is a private party. So, we suggest you move on.” As he said this Bast noticed the other dwarves putting hands on their weapons.

“Ah well happy trading then.” Embarrassed and angry that he wasn’t able to find anything out Bast ordered another beer and sat back down.

While brooding over his beer, Bex sat down next to Bast.
Deciding not to chastise her for her lateness, knowing she would have a good explanation Bast welcomed her as she sat down. “Hail Bex, how has your day been?”

Bex noticed the tension in Bast’s voice, but wasn’t sure what had him on edge. “It’s been an interesting one but I can tell you later. How has your morning been?”

Instead of responding Bast gave a subtle nod to the Dwarves behind him. Bex looked over and raised her brown in understanding. “Anything new to tell?”

Bast shook his head. “Innathia is on it.”

Nodding again Bex left it at that, Innathia specialized on information so something should turn up sooner rather than later.

“What about you? How was your swim?” Bex then proceeded to tell Bast what had happened near the docks at the Church to Riternal.

“Do you think the guards are going to come back? We can go over and keep an eye on him?” Bast had met Ket a couple of times and he always seemed an honest man.

Bex glanced toward the door, concern clearly visible on her face. “He said he would be all right and that he had people who could hide him if things took a turn for the worse. But it couldn’t hurt to go look.” Glad to be away from the dwarves Bast and Bex began heading out towards where Ket was staying.

While on their way to Kets there was a large commotion, smoke was rising a from a couple of blocks away and screams could be heard. Bast and Bex immediately set off towards the noise, at the site of the commotion they found a giant sink hole. Several dead bodies were laying near hole but no sign of what had caused it. The first people Bast and Bex saw was Innathia, crossbow in hand stealthy approaching the site. He looked back and saw them coming up and nodded but motioned for caution.

“What is this infernal racket!” Glancing back, they saw a Nephilim Wizard striding brazenly down the street. At this provocation, a loud screech went up as four goblins climbed out of the sink hole brandishing shields and scimitars.

Bex let out a loud yell and rushed the creatures, taking a swing for the nearest one but missing as her axe smashed into the goblins shield. At this moment Innathia’s crossbow went off with a twang, impaling in a goblins mouth. The spoke arcane syllables and cold frost played across his hand as a ray of ice shot out killing another of the attackers.

Rushing at one of the remaining goblins Bast took a thrust with his spear, lighting playing across the blade. Unfortunately, missing as the goblin swung down and slashed at his legs.
Thrandiul spoke more arcane syllables and another blast shot out taking out another goblin. Bex screamed in triumph as her axe finally connected with the last goblin splitting it down the middle.

Panting from the skirmish Bast and Bex turned to their new allies, appraising the Nephilim in their midst. “Hail and well met friends, what is going on here?” Bast asked, looking between the rare sighting of a Seraphim and Nephilim together.

“No idea, I saw the smoke rising up and decided to investigate when you guys arrived.” Innathia quickly replied. “But I do know that more of these bastards are running around the town as we speak.”

Appraising his new companions and finding them wanting, Thrandiul introduced himself and bade the party on before he would have to sit and talk to these commoners. But keeping an eye on Innathia.

Following the sound of screams, the party quickly came upon another set of goblins laughing manically as they continued to stab the corpse of a dead dog. Innathia stepped up and shot out a blast of lighting from his mace, leaving only a pile of smoking corpses. Impressed the party moved on.

Continuing towards the sound of screams they found themselves witnessing a man trying to fight off four goblins defending what looked to be his home. Not waiting to ask questions Bex gave another roar and charged the goblins, eager to wet her axe again. Cleaving one goblin through the side, it let out a loud yell before being cut in half. As Bex distracted the goblins Innathia took another shot at the goblins, putting a bolt through the skull of a goblin who was still focused on the man by the door.

Bast leapt at a goblin near him, stabbing with his spear as lighting played along the weapon. Stabbing it through the throat the goblins cry was cut short as it gargled blood. The final goblin was casually blasted by a ray of frost by Thrandiul, looking thoroughly bored and angry at the goblins for wasting his time.

The man who was being assaulted rushed over to thank them for delivering him from the goblins, and that he and his three daughters were in their debt.

With the fighting done the group properly introduced themselves to each other and decided where to proceed from here. Bast, still slightly drunk from his stakeout of the tavern and needing to tend his wounds took Thrandiul up on his offer to rest at manor he was staying at, for a price. Bex and Innathia decided to go investigate the sinkhole and see if they could find the source of the goblins, and possibly find out why none of the city guards had come to aid the citizens.

At the sinkhole Innathia and Bex located several Tiefling corpses, and a strange black stone.

“Bast will want to hear about the slaves, he may be right that The Underbelly is here.”
Innathia continued to study the black stone but was unable to find anything out about it. Moving next to Bex he looked down at the corpses, “This is a day full of strange events. Notice that the tunnel where this hole originates from heads west? That means whoever is behind this attack is within the city already. We should continue west and see if we can locate the source.”

Figuring she could tell Bast about the slaves later Bex agreed. Together they headed out west eventually meeting with the cliffs overlooking the ocean. Bex climbed down the rocks, looking for any sign of a cave or tunnel. Finding none the two decided to call it a day and parted company.

Day 2.

The following day Bast continued his surveillance upon the dwarves, knowing that something was off about them. Not feeling like donating another five silver to Grygaa, Bast simply ordered a beer and tried to see if he could get a better look at the mark on the lead dwarf. The dwarf was talking to his subordinates, Bast hearing them talk of new product in dwarfish, as he shifted and finally Bast caught a look at the mark. The Underbelly. Bast had to take a second to calm himself and not rush the dwarves right there, knowing that he was outnumbered and could expect no help from any of the other patrons of the tavern. Bast finished his beer, and calmly got up and left in search for Innathia to see if he had gotten more information, but first he needed Bex.

Innathia was halfway through his chores when there was a bang on the door. Surprised at the intrusion Innathia cautiously opened the door to see Bast and Bex standing outside. “What in the nine hells are you guys doing here? How do you even know where I live?” Before either of them could answer Innathia held up his hand silencing them. “Make this quick and then get out.”

“We have found them; The Underbelly are in Port Durst. Have your informants found anything out yet? We can’t attack them at the tavern, we need to know where their hide out is.” Bast whispered to Innathia in a rushed tone, barely able to keep his anger in check. Six months of looking for any clue and now five Underbelly turn up all at once, an opportunity like this wouldn’t turn up again.

Innathia noted the tenseness in Bast’s posture, this human better not do anything foolish. “It has only been one day; the dwarves are careful and my people have not turned up anything yet. But the black-market won’t like the thought of slavers working in their turf. Give me more time, when we know more the Underbelly will have nowhere to hide.”
Bast was quite for a moment, “Two days, find out what you can in two days. If nothing turns up then I will march into the tavern and slay them, with or without your help.”
Innathia pondered this, knowing that two days was not enough time to play this out how he wanted. Nothing worse than a rushed plan, easy way to get us, and more importantly, me killed. Sighing Innathia replied, “Very well, but don’t do anything foolish until we know more.”
Bast nodded halfheartedly, clearly still considering simply going off to fight. “Fine, two days.” At that Bast turned and left. Bex looked at Bast and then to Innathia and gave a small frown shrugging apologetically and followed Bast.

As Bex caught up to Bast she asked, “Isn’t there a spell or something you can use to find the dwarves? I’ve heard talk of scrying spells and the such. Maybe the can, I don’t know, find their hide out or where they are stealing people.”
“You know it doesn’t work that way, the spells I have are only for combat and I lack the arcane knowledge to learn anything else.” Bast stopped walking. “But, that wizard Thrandiul might be convinced to help us.”

Thrandiul wasn’t at the town house he was renting but while they were searching for him they saw a scuffle between several of the guards. Breaking it up, they met a guard named Hank Ma-Ebba, who was upset because of the missing guards. Seemingly vanishing out of nowhere like clockwork. One of the missing guards was his sister. Agreeing to help them if they were able to turn up any news on his sisters’ whereabouts. Unable to find out anything regarding the Underbelly or Hank’s sister, the two decided to call it a night and returned to their camp outside the city.

Day 3

Despite his best effort, he couldn’t forget Bat and Bex’s intrusion the day before. Who did they think they were? There were rules, albeit loose, easily bended rules, to how you conduct business in the black market, and rule number one was that you don’t jeopardize your contacts cover! Never mind them, first he needed to check in on his operatives and then he would figure out what kind of bill they would get. Some of the best informants the city had to offer was the street urchins off the street, easily overlooked and forgotten, their loyalty could be easily bought with the promise of food for day. Innathia was heading towards a back alley in the abandoned district that he knew was a favored gathering place of the street urchins who generally stayed together for safety. As he turned the corner he saw a boy sitting in the alley. “Hail Haishi, what news today?” Noticing Innathia the boy smiled and give out a sharp whistle, seemingly coming out of the woodworks children appeared in the alley swarming Innathia. He smiled and joked with the kids, handing them the sack he had brought with him that contained supplies for them. When the majority of the kids ran off with their prize he turned back to Haishi.
“What news young friend?”
Haishi looked hesitant to speak. “Nothing yet sir, but…. I don’t know if we can continue.”
Innathia frowned and knelt down in front of Haishi. “We have a deal Haishi, you’ve never shirked a job before, what changed?”
At this Haishi almost broke down. “It’s Hamil, he hasn’t come home. He was tailing the dwarves the night before.”
Innathia sighed and put his hand on Haishi’s shoulder. “Say no more, I will look into it. Don’t try and tail the dwarves again, but look into other matters. People have gone missing the last several months, if you find anything come to me. And don’t worry about Hamil, I will find him.” Haishi gave a nod, appreciating his words but know the cruel reality of their lot.

A couple of hours later Innathia stood in a dark alley not too far from the Greedy Worm, young Hamils body abandoned, eyes staring into the distance, a large gash cut into his chest. Innathia gave a prayer to the gods and closed the boy’s eyes. Standing back up Innathia headed out to look for Bast and Bex.

While this was going on, Bex was approached by Hansu, the man they had saved during the goblins attack. He told her that one of his daughters had gone missing, and that neither of her sisters knew where she had gone. This wasn’t the first time she had heard of people disappearing in the city, Bex vowed to help in any way she could.

The full party was assembled before the Greedy Worm, intent on staking out the tavern and trail the dwarves. When he was contacted by Innathia, Bast immediately noted his changed demeanor, something had occurred but he wasn’t sure what. Either way he finally had the allies he needed to get to the bottom of this. Either the dwarves would lead them to their lair, or they kill them in the streets, or hopefully both.
As the evening wore on they saw the two guards head out first, a false alarm. But it had drawn out Bast enough that he was out of position as one of the dwarves walked out and froze, looked around and went back in. A few moments later the same dwarf left the in and headed North.
“Bex and I will tail the dwarf, the rest of you see if any others head out. This could be a decoy, because of my blunder they are probably on to us.” Bast and Bex set off tailing the first dwarf.

As Innathia and Thrandiul waited another dwarf came out and headed South. The two ignored him, figuring that the true catch would be the last dwarf to leave. A few more minutes went by and another dwarf left, heading West. And then another East. Figuring that this would be the last to leave Innathia set out to follow him. Thrandiul simply leaned against the wall in plain sight smoking his pipe.

As Innathia left, Thrandiul contemplated simply heading home. How did he always get dragged along on these fool errands? Just as he was thinking this the dwarf that was clearly the leader of the group stepped out and looked directly at Thrandiul. Taking another drag from his pipe, Thrandiul nodded in greeting to the dwarf. Caught off guard by a Nephilim standing outside the tavern, the dwarf nodded back and then went South. Looks like this may be worth my time after all Thrandiul thought.

The dwarf that went north didn’t take long into turning into a corner, as Bast and Bex followed him the dwarf was waiting for them in an alley, great axe ready.
“We going to do this?” He asked brandishing his axe.
Bex rushed the dwarf taking a swing at him, ready for such an attack the dwarf blocked her first strike with his axe. Immediately following up with an attack of his own. Unable to dodge Bex took a blow to her side. As Bex went in, Bast also brought forth his hand, shooting eldritch power at the dwarf wounding him. Before the dwarf could react Bex kneed the dwarf in the face knocking him to the ground, followed by a downward cleave that nearly took of the dwarf’s arm.
“Wait!” Bast shouted as Bex prepared for the killing blow. “Tie him up, he may have answers.”
Luckily Bex hadn’t entered the frenzy state she normally went into during combat and pulled her last blow. They tied up the dwarf and carried him back towards the Tavern.

Innathia followed the dwarf to the docks, where he took out his pipe and proceeded to smoke. Cursing for being lead on a fool’s errand Innathia quickly doubled back to the Tavern.

The lead dwarf continued heading south, eventually stopping outside the residence where their fight had ended with the goblins. As he sat watching him in the shadow, the dwarf pulled out a set of pipes and started to play a haunting toon. Soon the window opened and two girls came through the window, seemingly in a trance they scaled down and proceeded to follow the dwarf. Not a development he expected, Thrandiul continued following until the dwarf came upon a derelict building in the abandoned district. When the dwarf and the two girls went inside, Thrandiul set out back towards the tavern.

As Thrandiul returned Bast and Bex were already there with an unconscious bound dwarf, the giant showing signs of battle. They were in a heated debate with Innathia, trying to determine what to do next. Taking out his pipe, Thrandiul proceeded to smoke some more, waiting for them to finish.

“I doubled back as fast as I could, so that means that other dwarf is probably still at the dock. If we act fast they will be down a man.”
“We won’t know anything until the dwarf wakes up, until then we must simply wait.” Bast kicked the unconscious dwarf, seeing if it would wake him up. “Considering Bex’s strength that may be a while.”
“If any one bothered to ask me, I could tell you exactly where their base is.” Every one stopped to look at the Nephilim, seeming to have forgotten he was there. Smirking, know he had their attention now, “The dwarfs are in a building in the abandoned district. That lead dwarf who wears too much cologne went back to where he fought the last of the goblins and somehow lured two girls out. In a zombie like state they followed him to the building. If we go now they are surely still there.”
“Should we still wait and see what this dwarf knows? He may know a secret way in.” As Bast asked the question, Innathia bent down and slit the dwarfs throat.
“Well shall we be off?”

The group stood outside the building trying to scope it out, from what they could tell there was only one way in. Pressed for time the party forsook stealth and burst through the door. Seeing no one immediately inside the party fanned out, noting stairs leading up and another set leading down to a closed door. Deciding to investigate the cellar first. Walking down the grouped looked at each other, each giving a nod of readiness. Bex gripped the handle and opened up the door….

View

I'm sorry, but we no longer support this web browser. Please upgrade your browser or install Chrome or Firefox to enjoy the full functionality of this site.