The PCs begin to make their way back to Kaltez with Tall-Gulu as prisoner, and a few of Tall-Gulu’s former slaves in tow.
Kaltez has been pillaged and burned to the ground! Guards and civilians lie dead. The guards’ armor is cracked and warped in a strange manner, and point-less crossbow bolts with a strange brown goo are scattered around. Upon testing, the PCs discover that the goo explodes when brought into contact with metal armor, but not when brought into contact with a wooden wall. The PCs find the Chief Officer of Kaltez still alive. He has been hiding in his secret basement vault and recognized the voices of the PCs inspecting his home. He explains that men wearing the double-unicorn shield came and pillaged the town.
The PCs bring Tall-Gulu, former slaves, and Chief Officer back to the Palace by boat. During the ride, the PCs manage to piss off the Chief Officer. The PCs report their findings to the Priest Venuse of the Council of Bandor. The Priest tells the PCs the following bits of information:
“A double unicorn shield? That symbol was last used before you were born, 45 long years ago in the Nordania-Estenole War. I fought in that war, but the death and devastation that it brought, to the soldiers, the land, the farmers, the starving city- …it was too much. But you, like me, have turned to Bandor, so you understand already that we must crusade to prevent war.
Mmm where was I? Ah, yes, the double unicorn-shield. This was Nordania’s coat of arms. The Council of Bandor negotiated a peace treaty between the king of Nordania and the king of Estenole in which both sides agreed to retire their current coat of arms as a gesture of good faith. The attack on the mining colony is a violation of the treaty, and the use of that coat of arms adds insult to injury”
“But the council of Bandor has spies in the Nordanian royal court and in the Nordanian army. How could this mission have been authorized without our knowledge? The Nordania chapter of the Council of Bandor could easily have sent a messenger on horseback or by water to warn us before the army reached Kaltez. ”
“I must speak with my council members and tell them what has happened. Your services will most likely be needed in the immediate future, if the council can think of a way to avert this war. Report back to me tomorrow.”
Tall-Gulu is thrown into the temple’s prison, and the slaves are shuffled away.
The PCs go to the palace to claim their reward for defeating Tall-Gulu and retrieving his silver crown. The King, with the Chief Officer nearby, refuses to pay the PCs given that Kaltez has been destroyed. The PCs argue with the King, but, due to their diplomatic ways, the King forgives their disrespect to himself and his Chief Officer of Kaltez.
The PCs do, however, receive 1,000 XP (200 XP each), for completing a major quest.
The PCs go shopping for magic items and happen to notice that none of the merchants have low-level armor for sale. Using their wisdom of the streets, the PCs discover that the merchant family, Angbanu, have been buying up magic armor for unknown reasons.
The PCs decide to investigate the Angbanu family further by visiting a popular tavern in the rich side of the city where the wealthy merchants live. Jaren uses his charisma to saunter past the district’s gates without question. The PCs visit the Five-Feather Hat tavern and proceed to drink and chat it up with an Under-Under Butler. The PCs then move to a private booth and overhear the raucous boasting of pubescent teenagers in the next booth over. Soon, however, their sleuthing pays off, and the other bordering booth becomes occupied by a jovial group who brag that “Everything is going according to plan, this war will make us rich!”. Ivar spies in on them and sees that they are clearly of the Angbanu family. The PCs follow the group until the group goes into a private, gated, estate.
The next morning, the PCs report back to Priest Venuse. The priest says:
“The Council is divided. Some refuse to believe that the king of Nordania has committed himself to the folly of war. We have prayed to Bandor but she did not answer our questions. I have two tasks for you. Go to Nordania and speak with the Nordanian chapter of the Council of Bandor. We will provide you with transportation by sea for this trip. Return to us with any information you gather. Go also to the Wizards of the Coast, a wizards academy to the northeast of Nordania. This strange form of weaponry appears arcane in nature and if it is arcane, the Wizards of the Coast may be able to help us unravel this mysterious item. Here is a letter to give to the Council of Bandor in Nordania, this letter will ensure that they trust you. The Wizards of the Coast, however are not particularly fond of Bandor, so we have no such letter to give you in that regard.”
The PCs make their way to the docks to travel aboard a merchant vessel that the Council of Bandor has paid to take the PCs on board as it travels to the Wizards of the Coast. The PCs meet the Captain of the boat, Captain Lenolds, and question him as to his employers. The Captain says that he works for the Angbanu family. The PCs agree to help the captain unload his boat of its current cargo. The cargo consists of large, ceramic jugs with some sort of liquid inside. The jugs are very well sealed, however, and the PCs are frustrated in their attempts to break one open without being seen. The PCs do discover a stowaway Eladrin on board the ship, by the name of Solaris. Solaris explains that she has snuck on board to find out where the Angbanu family is getting the Olium that they have been selling to the Eladrin. Solaris explains that Olium is a terrible drug that the Eladrin have become addicted to. The PCs manage to upset Solaris with their strange habit of juggling during conversation and their lack of knowledge of what Olium is, and she breaks down crying.
The PCs have Captain Lenolds drop them off in Nordania, as the captain continues on to the Wizards of the Coast. The PCs consult with the Nordanian chapter of the Council of Bandor. Priestess Alissa is shocked that Nordania would be able to pull of this operation without the Council’s knowledge, due to their network of spies in the king’s court and in the Nordanian army. She agrees that the Wizards of the Coast may be able to provide further insight into the mysterious brown goo. She also councils that a new Oracle in Nordania may be of some help. The PCs visit the oracle’s home and schedule an appointment for two days hence.
The PCs travel the tower of the Wizards of the Coast. There they meet Lidius, a Fat, Tiefling Wizard who agrees to help the PCs if the PCs will help her by testing a new defensive system she has been working on for a client.
1,000 XP for completing the Tall-Gulu quest.