Before leaving the Hamlet of Ebon Stone, Belamdil had a dream…
Belamdil, “You come upon a tree. Sitting in a nest in the tree is a large owl eating baby sparrows. Three adult sparrows lay dead on the ground under the tree.”
While on the road traveling, Belamdil shared his dream with his companions. With his interpretation and input from his friends, Belamdil concluded that the sparrows represented the Orwain family, relatives of Sir Arduin Orwain, because of the message in the tomb that referenced leaving a key to “Darkheart’s Black Spire of Sorrows” in the “sparrow’s nest.” It is assumed that the nest refers to Sir Arduin’s home. The owl is the sigil of and may represent the deity, Nok’rosh, god of the veil. His followers are devoted to seeking knowledge to horde for themselves to gain profit and power. No other insight was gleaned from the dream at this time.
After reaching Mortham Tower, the party secured lodging and hit the market that evening. In an effort to maximize time since it was approaching nightfall, the party divided. Reeve, Tansy, and Ethrias took the evil artifacts to a local shrine of Glo’ir where they met Tavion Shieldreaver, the Paladin keeper of the shrine. Stories were exchanged and the artifacts left in his care.
Meanwhile, Belamdil and the rest began selling the gear taken from the Anti-Paladin and her crew. After selling the horses, Blane was shouldered by an armored man walking by. The man then accused Blane of being a moron that should watch where he was going. Belamdil and Liathis both saw the man purposefully walk into Blane. Praxith attempted to intervene and cool tempers. The armored man told Blane to get his whore under control and apologize or he would be taught a lesson. Before Blane could respond, the man pulled his sword and issued a challenge by the count of three. A crowd then formed a circle around the two men.
While the crowd was forming, Belamdil was pushed out of the forming circle, away from his friends. Belamdil yelled to alert his companions. Although Blane heard Belamdil’s alarm, he was also aware that the armored man was about to strike. Blane pushed Praxith from between them and the armored man delivered a massive strike on Blane, this was going to be lethal.
Liathis was unable to push through the crowd to reach Belamdil, so she began throwing magic missiles to assist Blane while Praxith delivered healings to Blane. The armored man struck down Praxith in one blow before turning his attentions back to Blane.
Belamdil then felt a hand on his shoulder and a blade in his back. A man’s voice whispered in his ear to “remain calm and quiet.” Then, a portion of the crowd encircled Belamdil and his assailant. They moved Belamdil away from the street and into an alley.
Remaining behind Belamdil, the man said “Listen priest, you need to stop following me. This is my find. Leave it alone. This is your only warning. Next time will be lethal.” Then the cloaked man fled down the alley. Once he was out of sight, the thugs encircling Belamdil simply backed away and melded into the streets. Belamdil then returned to the crowd around the fight.
Belamdil was able to push his way back in to the circle and assist in the fight. At one point the armored man had dropped all except Belamdil and he was about to strike. Belamdil then channeled energy and all his companions rose back to the fight. Blane finally struck the armored man down after a long and mostly one-sided battle. Liathis then screamed obscenities at the fallen man and kicked him in the crotch while he was down. This drew a mostly negative reaction from the crowd. The companions quickly vacated the area as voices where heard among the crowd requesting the city watch.
When they returned to their inn to meet with Reeve and Tansy, men were already inside telling the story of the fight in the street. They also easily identified Belamdil, Blane, and Liathis as the folks who “beat the man and then kicked him while he was down.” The party decided to take their meeting upstairs and away from the common area.
They discussed the encounter, an obvious set up, but by who and why? Who was the cloaked man and what was his “find”? Which of their many quests was crossing this man’s path? The only clear message was the dream indicating that the Orwain family was in trouble. The group believed Sir Arduin was from Thiama, but without some research, they have no idea where in Thiama.
The next day, the group sailed across the lake, then traveled another three days to Balkenport. They arrived on January 23rd, sought out a shrine to Glo’ir and met Terresa Frostband who directed them to get rooms at “The Regal Gardens” Inn near the university. She will then take them to the university in hopes of finding a sage to assist with Black Pearls.