Five Pillars of the Sun

The Flight Out of AnvilGuard

Several dwarven women scream a blood curdling cry of treachery at the sight of their dead dwarven lord in the hands of the adventurers. Guards begin to surround the town square but before they can reach the party, several dark figures appear along the rooftops of the shops and inns. The skulking figures dash nimbly as they throw their smoke bombs into strategic spots in the crowd, concealing the party. Several of these shadow beings reach for the party and pull them into an alley, where they have prepared a wagon full of hay. They quickly slip out of their dark uniforms and into commoner’s clothing. They command that the party hide within the pile of hay and, although hesitant, the party decides to trust them given the situation. They are then carted off, far away from the commotion. The party remain hidden for several hours until the wagon stops. The driver of the cart instructs the party that they have few minutes to rise from the hay and change into different attire. Each of the adventurers is handed a knapsack with a commoners clothing that suits the style of Cyriil better than their foreigners clothing.

The group of individuals tell the party that their associates have prepared Zerik’s body for the trip to CopperLeaf an that it has been loaded as part of the cargo in another wagon that arrives half an hour later. The party then takes this wagon and the skulking figures reveal themselves to be an organization that goes by the name of The Black Company and that they have been commissioned as a favor to Galadriel. They give the party a map with instructions for getting to CopperLeaf village. The Black Company also informs the party that they will be watching from the shadows to ensure that the body of the dwarven lord is safely delivered to its destination, and if the party strays from their path, they will be seen as enemies and quickly dispatched by The Black Company. As they begin their journey West from Anvil Guard, the party finds that they have not eaten in a long time. After several hours of nonstop traveling, the party finally decides to stop to rest after traveling for 70 miles during the week. Finally exhausting the few rations that they had along with what few scraps they could gather from the food on board the wagon, Martelm decides to hunt for some food late that night. He spots a quivering bush and a fluffy fleece like bundle behind the bush. Martelm shoots an arrow into the bush and strives the animal behind it, only to hear the scream and curses of an old woman. As he realizes his fatal mistake, he runs over to the site of his grizzly failure. Several other vagabonds emerge from nearby bushes and one of them runs over to the dying woman yelling “Martha!! Oh no!! My sweet Martha!!”. The arrow had struck Martha and was now protruding from the side of her head. As her eyes rolled over, the vagabonds began to utter curses at Martelm for his most heinous act. A small girl ran from the group of vagabonds and charged at Martelm, striking him ineffectively, screaming “You monster!! You bad man!! Give me mommy back!!”. Overcome with grief, Martelm headed back to the wagon and informed the party of his actions. He returned to help bury Martha, however, the vagabonds all exploded into a cloud of smoke, and when the smoke cleared, Martelm and the party notices a member of The Black Company sitting and watching from atop a tree branch. He nimbly jumps down and introduces himself simply as Oliver. His garments are a navy blue, rather than jet black, and the party notices that the scabbard of his katana is quite magnificently decorated. He transforms and reveals himself as a kitsune, a race of foxfolk that have the ability to shift shape into a human disguise at will. Oliver apologized to Martelm and informs him that he was merely conducting a test of character because he wanted to know if the party was trustworthy. Martelm attempts to strike him but Oliver gracefully dodges all of his attacks and replies with a mere chuckle. He backflips into the shadows and from the branches, a bomb hits the ground and after the smoke fades away, the party finds a giant banquette table has appeared before them with candles and a feast of several delectables and aromas that make the party lick their lips. Traumatized, the party begins to feast but soon forgets the cruel trick as their stomachs begin to fill.

As they enjoy the meal set before them, a dwarven thief begins to look through the crates in their wagon. The party quickly dispatch him but the struggle results in Oscar becoming possessed by the dwarf’s ring beast that used Oscar’s Staff of Necromancy against his own allies. The possessed Oscar destroys the wagon along with killing the donkeys that were pulling their wagon. Eventually, Jose’s Blessed Blade animates and, as it feasts upon demons, it aids in destroying the ring beast that had attached itself to Oscar’s hand. When the commotion dies down, Oscars hands have become horribly maimed and his spell casting is no longer possible, so any hopes of casting mend on the wagon are instantly shot down. The party contemplates making the journey back to AnvilGuard to acquire some means of transportation, but, remembering the threat of death by The Black Company, Jose decides to carry the crate containing Zerik’s body within his Bag of Holding.

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