The Return of Aegon Ratslayer

After meeting a wizard called Pelltar and agreeing to help him, Rose and the Troupe were teleported to the town of Restenford, on a remote isle to the south east of the Sword Coast. Knowing only that there are “troubles” in the area, they must now try and learn what these problems are so they can solve them and return to the Coast.

2 Flamerule 1368

Across the river we find another tavern, likely belonging to someone named Falco, given its name.

Inside we talk to the help, which turns out to not be so helpful.

Rose does as he says and finds the owner of the tavern.

Rose: Not at all. I am Rose.

Falco: Well met, Rose, and a pearl to you. Feel free to peruse my goods and ask questions, naturally.

Rose: Yes, show me what services you have.

Falco: As you wish.

He has some rooms we could stay in for the night, as well as several beers. We had enough at the Tavern of the West Wind so we move on.

Outside we meet a girl who we are clearly a bad influence on. At least according to some in this town.

We visit some of the houses on this side of the river. In one home we hear rumours of bandits again.

His wife tells us how the local bait seller’s home is probably infested.

Their son has a bright future ahead of him though.

Mur’Neth slinks upstairs and finds a history book in one of their cabinets.

It’s an interesting read, Finch would probably appreciate it for her library. Nashkel is close to Amn after all.

It’s strange to think that the “threat” from Baldur’s Gate they are facing now is probably fake. Are the troubles in the Coast all a part of some complex political manipulations? We need to get back there and find who is pulling the bandit’s strings.

Mur’Neth unburdens the family with some coins he finds in their bedside cabinets.

There is one more home here. We enter to find a shop selling bait. This must be the man with the rat infestation.

Rose: No, I wasn’t planning on it. Who are you?

Zahrdahl: Name’s Zahrdahl. You must be that group of adventurers that Pelltar hired.

Rose: Yes, that is us. My name is Rose. Uh, how did you know about us already?

Zahrdahl: Oh, well, local gossip and such. What can I help you with?

Rose: What do you know about the rat problem around your house?

Zahrdahl: Look, I sell bait; worms, parts of dead animals, good stuff like that. I don’t sell glassware or pottery. The rats are coming up the road at night from the south.

I have set traps. I even use the ones I catch as bait. I have seen some huge ones that the others follow.

If you got nothing better to do, go down to the old barracks and find out where they come from.

Rose: Old barracks? Where is that?

Zahrdahl: Follow this road south. It ends at a guard house that burnt down years ago. There shouldn’t be anything down there so I don’t know why all the rats come from there.

Rose: All right, we will look into it.

I always thought Reevor was wasting my time sending me to kill all those rats in the Keep’s Storehouse. But now here we are. The perfect quest for Aegon Ratslayer! Now if only he wanted me to deliver a letter…

Before we leave, Mur’Neth does his usual and finds a few coins.

He also finds a chest that can’t be opened by normal means. I wonder what Zahrdahl keeps in there?

The sun sets as we leave Zahrdahl’s home and follow the path south. It is night by the time we get close to the burnt out barracks. We walk past a house overgrown with weeds.

The walls of the barracks are mostly intact, but the roof has been destroyed completely.

We go inside and find a rat scurrying about. Time to use what Reevor taught me back at the keep!

Viconia gets the kill.

We search the burnt out barracks but find nothing of any value. We do find a trap door at the back, however.

We descend into the depths and find ourselves in a decorated cave. Someone used to live here, but the only occupants we find are dead already.

We get to work and quickly destroy one of the skeletons.

The other is separated from its undeath by Cat. Viconia notices there is a hidden door in this chamber after the skeleton falls.

Were these the original occupants of this room? Left to die here after the barracks burned down? We start to look for clues when Viconia triggers a trap.

We’re going to have to be careful. Both Cat and Mur’Neth keep an eye for any signs of more traps while Viconia heals herself.

After the cat and the slime carefully check the secret door we open it and find a chest behind it. Mur’Neth checks it for traps and picks the lock.

Unfortunately it turns out not only to be empty, but also has a trap Mur’Neth missed. Thankfully the slime is immune to whatever gases it emits.

In the skeleton’s chamber there is another chest, with a clear sign that someone has died trying to open it.

Before we can get close, however, we learn that there are still some undead occupants in these caves.

I might upgrade myself from Ratslayer to Ghoulslayer.

After killing the ghoul Mur’Neth checks the chest. It doesn’t find a trap so we guess that since it has already been triggered by the dead thief…

Never mind. Viconia heals the ooze and we start exploring the other chambers in this cave.

To the south we find throwing daggers on a table. We don’t trigger any traps when we pick them up.

Some of the daggers are poisoned. Mur’Neth takes them all – it likes using daggers more than its sling,

We go deeper into the caves and find more undead. We haven’t seen many rats so far – perhaps they are being forced out by these creatures and that’s why they’re troubling Zahrdahl?

It doesn’t give us any trouble, but this one is carrying a fire opal ring that may fetch a good price to the right buyer.

Another skeleton, another kill for Viconia.

Xan starts to lose it a little. Wandering around caves with a living mould can do that to a guy, I guess.

Xan: Could life get any better? No, I think not.

Mur’Neth: Gtttthhhhhh… That’s a change from your usual pessimism, fleshling.

Xan: I was being sarcastic. But never mind, just forget I said anything. Soon enough we’ll all be dead and there’ll be nobody to remember it anyhow.

Mur’Neth: These nuances of the Common Tongue, your sarcasm, your irony, is alien to me.

Xan: So seems to be the case with a lot of people. I wouldn’t worry, Mur’Neth.

How do your kind communicate, Mur’Neth? Your vocal capability limited as it is, I imagine you have a less frustrating method.

Mur’Neth: Ah, Ghuanadaur’s most blessed method! We communicate largely by smell, the most pure of the senses.

Xan: Oh, and what do you smell around here?

Mur’Neth: The stence… Of death. Follows us wherever we go. Thhhhlmmmm…

Xan: I suppose that figures. Oh well.

We move deeper into the caves and we find the tunnel the rats must be using to get out of the caves.

This must lead to a rat’s nest somewhere, but we will need to find it. Unfortunately all we seem to be able to find are more ghouls.

But I am Aegon Ghoulslayer now.

A second ghoul attacks us, but it falls just as quickly as the rest have.

Through this room we start to hear the squeaking and chirping of rats. We must be getting close to the nest.

A giant rat charges us but Viconia reduces it to a bloody pulp.

More rats approach and they start to flank us.

Thankfully they are as easy to kill as the ones that would invade Reevor’s storehouse when I was young. And the cat we have with us is actually willing to hunt them. We continue toward the nest, encountering more rats as we go.

When we start to see clean bones we know we are getting close.

We find a chamber filled with smaller, possibly younger rats. They are easier to kill. Cat seems to enjoy the hunt.

After Cat finishes off the rats we search the nest for any more. We don’t find any, but we do find a pile of equipment. Possibly remains of what survived the fire that burned down the barracks above.

There is a wand that we are unable to identify. I hold onto it for now, until we can tell what it does.

There is also some enchanted chainmail and an enchanted dagger. The armour we are wearing works better for us, and Mur’Neth already has a magical dagger so we store these in the Bag of Holding.

There are also two sets of darts that we cannot identify. We need to get better at appraising our treasures.

There are also two scrolls here. One is a stronger version of the Charm spells we already know.

There is also a spell that protects the recipient with illusory armour. Both of these spells are pretty advanced for our party, so I store them in my scroll case for the time being.

There are also four potions here. One is a strange looking Antidote.

Another is a Potion of Cloud Giant Strength. This will be useful when we need to hit something hard.

Then there are two potions that will help us resist the affects of magic.

With the nest cleared, we make our way back to the surface. It has passed midnight now, and a mist is descending on the night.

3 Flamerule 1368

Aegon: While we are on the subject, can you tell me what is truly going on in the Greycloak Hills? Is it true that the whole city of the Fallen Kingdom was discovered, full of the powerful Netherese and other treasure?

Xan: This, Aegon, I cannot discuss with you.

Aegon: There are more rumours about what’s happening than there are eyes on a beholder! Sooner or later the truth will come out!

Xan: Not from my lips, which will be sealed for good very soon, anyway.

I don’t know which is more annoying, his pessimism or his secrecy around the goings on of the elves. I’m starting to realise how disconnected from my own culture I truly am.

We make our way back to the fish baiter’s home to tell him we have found and cleaned out the nest.

Viconia: We killed every rat we could find.

Zahrdahl: About time someone around here did something useful.

And that’s all he has to say about it. We’ve solved one problem in this town at least. But I doubt this is the reason Pelltar brought us here. Viconia decides to push him for more information.

Viconia: Have you heard of any other problems around here?

Zahrdahl: Problems? Other than a few rats, we don’t have any problems.

Viconia: Nothing at all? Pelltar made it sound like Restenford has all sorts of problems.

Zahrdahl: When you find out more information, please let me know. It would be, uh, good gossip and I can’t always make it up to Falco’s Tavern when my leg flares up.

Viconia: Okay, we will let you know.

We aren’t learning anything new here. Night is passing and we still don’t know much about the problems here other than vague rumours of gnolls and bandits. We have to keep exploring. Perhaps we could find Pelltar in his tower and ask him straight what we are supposed to be doing here.

Because the Sword Coast cannot keep waiting when it’s on the verge of war…

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