Hollow's Last Hope

Dhohar's Down Time

Dhohar had bid his new friends a good evening as they headed back to Falcon’s Rest and pulled Rumble and Mischief into a copse of trees about two miles outside of town. He didn’t want Rumble to have any issues with the locals and most people didn’t to attack bears without thinking. He knew his animal companion would be fine for a day or two in the copse and could forage at night if he really got hungry.

He awoke to a pretty sunrise and crisp, cold air. He slid out of his bedroll and dressed quickly, stamping his feet into his cold boots. Then, as the sun’s rays basked his face he did his normal morning ritual of meditation and tuning himself to nature. It was his favorite part of the day – a time of relaxation, peace and a sense of oneness. As he slowly returned his senses to his surrounding, Dhohar donned his armor, took the money pouches off Rumble’s harness and set off at a brisk walk to reach town and make a few purchases. He hoped to use some of the gold from his reward to get a few weapon changes and, if lucky, better armor.

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Zandu's Shoping List

Zandu enjoyed a hardy lunch with Kieyanna and Dhohar at Jak’a’Napes where Zandu was happy to pay the intreguing proprietor Jak. As a bastion of anti-Consortium activity in Falcon’s Hollow the place had a ring of truth about it. It was just slightly nicer than the normal ragtag of cheeply made wooden buildings that had been quickly nailed together in this end of the line for commerce into the Darkmoon Wood.

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Kieyanna's Downtime

After arriving back in Falcon’s Hollow and receiving her pay from Laurel, Kieyanna secured lodging at Jak’a’ Napes. Kieyanna wolfed down a huge meal of flank steak and bread, especially enjoying the berry cobbler for dessert, then retired upstairs for the evening. She managed to warm enough water for a pleasant bath and added a few herbs to the water that she had purchased at Laurel’s shop. She enjoyed soaking her tired muscles and ridding her body of sweat and stink. Her armor was necessary for protection, but it certainly encouraged more sweating than regular clothing would. After a leisurely soak in the sweet-smelling water, she rinsed out her clothing and laid it out to dry in her room.

After spending several days adventuring, she was always glad to sleep in a real bed. The beds at the Inn weren’t the best, but they would do. Her healing Firefoot curled up at the foot of her bed, his chin on her feet, and slept.

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At the Hut
combat

Dhohar stopped a reasonable distance from the the other travelers, his spear held loosely and his posture clearly non-threatening. None had over reacted nor become threatening as he approached but he did note the lips moving as they quietly conferred about what to do (at least, that’s what he supposed they were doing). He greeted them in his clear voice, “Hello travelers, my name is Dhohar Ker’ki’hel. I found myself in this glade as part of a quest to aid nearby Falcon’s Rest. How are you this fine day?” With that greeting and ice-breaker he proceeded to chat for several minutes with the others. The woman was Kieyanna, the men Zandu and Milon. At a closer distance they seemed to be well prepared and he recognized Milon’s name from overheard comments in Falcon’s Rest, as well as the recommendations from Laurel for a guide.

The others were on the same quest to help Falcon’s Rest as he was and it appeared to have also procured the necessary mushrooms. They too, now sought the needed rat’s tail. He confessed to having searched the woods for some days in looking for the plant that was used to make the pickled substance but to no avail. They exchanged a few pleasantries regarding their respective animal friends; Dhohar introducing Mischief and Rumble and Kieyanna introducing her fire cat. After a few more pleasantries, Dhohar asked if he might aid them in completing the quest and they agreed. As a new group they began to move towards the hut at the center of the clearing.

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Research

Title after spending a few days in the Jack of Nape’s Inn you have picked up rumors and heard telling of the dungeon beneath the Dwarven Ruins from wince you have recently returned. Old Greypelt has long prevented any woodsman from attaining the treasure therein but you have recently killed the Warg, Greypelt. Knowing you might have the hand up on any other treasure seekers you think it might provide opportunities for great wealth.

After asking the right questions and conducting a little research about the area you find out the following information.

Asking about the strange dwarven religious symbol yields the name of Droskar. This is the name of a malicious dwarven god. Rumors of torture and depraved acts linger surrounding the monastery. After seeing the prison cells it starts to make sense. Asking about the ancient site at the church in town reveals one cleric’s view.

Darkmoon Vale was not always the savage frontier it is today. More than a millennium ago, a vast dwarven kingdom sprawled across the landscape and pervaded deep into the stubborn rock below. Their civilization was unrivaled in its time, but as most grand kingdoms do, the dwarves conquered themselves from within. As their glories became innumerable, the dwarves’ decadence knew no bounds and their society began to collapse. Rampant indulgence fueled corruption, and soon the honor, discipline, and benevolence upon which the kingdom was built gave way to petty infighting over status, wealth, and power. The tattered kingdom sputtered and wheezed, but its death was delayed by the rise of a new cult devoted to a mirthless god of woe.

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Down Time

Zandu was thankful to get settled in a room at Jak’a’Napes. The three days in the forest had been rather long. But he was comforted to know their actions had saved many lives. After dinner and discussion with his companions Zandu returned to his room and washed up. He then washed his clothes to clean out the stain of sweat, oil, and blood that had caked his pocketed sashes and wraps that gave him unrestricted movement. He used some silk rope to make a drying line in his room. Before going to sleep, Zandu, knelt in his meditative pose to clear his mind and analyze how this part of his life fit in with his mission.

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Encountering New Companions
PC encounter

Dhohar entered the clearing with great reluctance. For the past several minutes of travel he’d not even needed his keen direction sense – he could feel an evil sensation emanating from the direction of the witch’s hut. He knew in his bones that must be where she lived; creatures that cut bargains costing one’s eyesight were not truly benevolent.

Rumble seemed unfazed however. Perhaps it was his relative youth, perhaps it was his simple “bear philosophy” but he continued his rolling gait easily matching Dhohar’s strides. The bear was learning and growing every day and Dhohar wondered if their bond would continue to deepen as Rumble grew. The Elder Druids always said it would and he hoped that was so.

Lost in these thoughts he eyed the small, round mud hut that stood in the middle of the clearing. It looked abandoned; occupants either dead or gone. It was almost a relief to see it in that condition – he had not looked forward to trying to bargain with the witch that lived there…
…and then he noticed the trio on the far side of the clearing watching him carefully. A taller woman, clad in metal armor and carrying a bow, arrow nocked, but not drawn; a smaller man clad in bound robes with a colorful scarf (he looked somewhat out of place in the woods but he seemed at peace) and grizzled man that looked like a forester, with a shortbow at the ready. Dhohar did not know what their purpose might be here, but chatting would be a good idea rather than barging into a fight. He asked Rumble to sit , waved and then began a slow and steady march towards the far side of the clearing to greet the new arrivals to the clearing.

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The Elder Tree

As darkness was falling in the Darkmoon forest the adventurers, Zandu, Kieyanna, Dhohar Ker’ki’hel, and their guide, Milon Rhoddam, found themselves in a glade with an enormous tree at its center. Certainly this was the Elder Tree where they would find the Elder Moss. The tree towered nearly 300 feet into the air and had a trunk 30 feet in diameter. Large branches extended in every direction and obscured the majority of the tree in a dense folliage.

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The Monastery

Zandu,Kieyanna, and Rhoddam spent the night sleeping in shifts with one person on the lookout for dangers in the night. The night passed without any disturbance to their resting place. Kieyanna continued to nurse the wounded fox back to health feeding him a moistened mash from her rations. Rolling up their bedrolls and scatterng the ashes of the fire the trio broke camp. Rhoddam explained their day’s trip and said they should make it to the ruined monastery before noon.

He was not wrong. Shortly before the sun reached its zenith, the group saw the first sight of the ruins. The trees gave way to overgrown lawns marked with game trails. …

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Falcon's Hollow, Arriving
"Falcon's Hollow"

It had been a long few days on the caravan ride in to Falcon’s Hollow. Zandu had linked up with a traveling caravan as a guard to make a few coins and eat for the next couple of days. He was a monk of Irori but that didn’t mean he didn’t need to eat. That was for those fanatic aesthetic monks. Zandu was a little more practical in the matter. He had met a half-elf woman also serving as a guard on the caravan. Her name was Kieyanna, a soul dedicated to the art of weapon’s master and searching for a place in the world. Zandu immediately identified with her plight and wondered if he had found a kindred spirit.

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