Session 11: “Pirates Underground”
From the journal of Adra Kellen:
Barrakas 27th, 818
Fort Serenity-My Room
After returning to my room last night, rather this morning, I found I could not sit idly as that creature sat so close to my quarters. Cedric, along with Akiros and the town guard, placed the man who was once a ravenous beast into the prison cells in the cellar of the fort. My training and instincts urged me to end the man’s life before the sun’s first light, but I knew that Cedric would have a guard posted at all hours.
Being restless, I joined the various recovery crews that had assembled the night before. It was remarkable how little damage the town had suffered. Only one gnomish tenement had collapsed.
Once daylight finally broke I heard shouts coming from the street that was nearly entirely flooded. I was already on my way to investigate when I was met by Akiros, who shared what the commotion was about. As he spoke we continued to walk towards the street. The middle of the street had collapsed revealing a passage of worked stone beneath. It appeared to lead toward the fort and away from the city. This passage clearly predated the town. I made sure that Akiros had placed men to guard the sinkhole. I am not looking forward to dropping into a tunnel filled with muddy water and who knows what else, but if this passage leads anywhere it needs to be explored.
I returned to the fort to change clothing the umpteenth time and found the others. Cedric was meeting with an ambassador from the king of Rhestilor, Soren Anitah. He was dressed in the fashion of the Brindol aristocrats, but wore chainmail and carried a more weathered look than a bureaucrat. Why was the king suddenly interested in our little kingdom?
As for Soren Anitah, he seems genuine. Though, an operative of the crown has that ability to be friendly and non-threatening while rooting out whatever he may be looking for. I’ll need to keep an eye on him as long as he remains in town.
Cedric dismissed Soren and had a footman show him and his entourage to a home that they could use for their stay.
Cedric wished to speak to me in private before continuing other affairs of the morning. Jhod had informed him that lycanthropy could be cured by a few spiritual leaders within the Sovereign Host or by the application of Wolfsbane. This treatment needed to be administered within three days of infection. While I knew there were rumors of cures to the curse, I was not interested. The man was a murderer and nearly had torn me to pieces the night before. I shared that I was skeptical of the cure and reaffirmed that he was still guilty of the deaths of innocents and the attempt on my life. Cedric insisted we speak to the man and give him a trial.
We spoke with the formerly vicious creature that now appeared as a giant of a man. Cedric did the talking, as I was unable to bring myself to parlay with the creature that nearly ended my life. The man, Kundar, was one of the barbarian tribes from across the bay. His tribe was recently attacked by a rival, the Cat’s Eye Tribe. When Cedric spoke of a trial, Kundar immediately agreed to a trial by combat. Cedric explained that it would be a trial from our lands and the man lost interest. Finally, Cedric offered another trial. The Wolfsbane. As it is a powerful poison, the man would be at the mercy of his own constitution. Cedric offered that if he were to survive he would be put to work rebuilding the town and serving out a sentence of labor for his crimes. The man agreed.
I, however, do not agree. While the case for redemption is valid, the man is a werewolf. Even if the poison cures him, he still murdered those people. What about his past? He clearly wanted to fight Cedric in some sort of honor duel, how does someone from a lawless land fit into our society?
Barrakas 27th, 818
It’s actually quite disconcerting that this cove and these activities had existed all this time without ever knowing about it. The others are currently taking inventory of the supplies these pirates had on their ship and within the dilapidated buildings in the cove.
Let me back up and explain how we got here. Shortly after speaking to the werewolf Kundar, Cedric and I planned to investigate the hole that revealed a stone passageway under the streets of the town. We had just arrived at the collapsed road as Boris clambers out and greets us with news of what he’s found. Pirates, he said. I didn’t believe him. The evidence now clearly supports this. I had no time for Boris’ games. I took a seat, I was far too tired to take anything more from Boris or the others today. The agent Soren arrived with his escort and Cedric asked if he would like to join us in exploring the tunnel and the chance to fight pirates. I couldn’t imagine how Soren saw us. I’m sure he is writing a detailed report about how insane we all are for the king.
We entered the tunnels and found that they extended toward the fort and toward the coast of the Tuskwater just outside the city. The others talked about various carnal activities and didn’t seem to take the endeavor seriously. I tired of their talk and started to slow my pace so that I was a good distance behind them.
They announced they had reached the opening of a cavern and Boris shouted about how it was where the pirates were. The sound of dogs barking and growling followed by feint shouts answered Boris before any of us could. I hurried my pace to the cave’s entrance and found the others in melee. Two dogs had lunged at Stone and were attached to him, tearing at his armor and clothing. The others began to make their way deeper into the cavern by way of stairs set into the wall of the cave. Stone dispatched the dogs with the help of a few of my arrows. I was perched at the entrance looking down and saw that the cavern was indeed populated by men who looked like river pirates. One group was readying a ship, while another was set to defend their base of operations. Cedric quickly found himself surrounded and was nearly impaled if it weren’t for a shout of warning. He blocked a blade traveling to his throat as Soren entered the fray. Boris managed to cast his blinding spell at one of the crew readying the ship and quickly found himself overboard. I fired several arrows at the rigging, intending to slow their preparations. I managed to hit something that caused the sail to come unfurled. Boris continued to make it difficult for the ship’s crew as he cast an obscuring mist that ruined any shot I would take, but forced the crew to slow their actions. The melee had ended and between Cedric, Soren, and Stone they cleared the ship of any hostiles by the time I reached the ship. One survivor was found in the water, the one who was blinded by Boris. He now sits in shackles.