My name is Kage Mellowskin, and this is the journal of my adventures…
It all started one week ago. I had arranged for transportation to the City of Haaven with a friendly Halfling by the name of Jogg. There were a few other travellers besides myself: a lovely yet aloof Wood Elf druid named Elwin; a helpful Half-Orc barbarian called Lard; Percy, the thoughtful Gnome wizard; the mysterious Dwarven paladin Rayna; a charming and roguish High Elf named Dray; and of course, Diego, an excitable and energetic Halfling ranger. During the first segment of our journey, I quickly became familiar with everyone. I am particularly fond of the Gnome Percy. As a wizard, he is quite intelligent and insightful, and I do so enjoy our engaging discussions.
Jogg decided to stop in a small village called Buckleby for a well-deserved break from the tedium of the trip. There was not much to see in the village; the only noteworthy buildings were the town hall, the tavern, the stables, and the church. There was also a fascinating stone statue in the centre of the village, of a weeping angel covering her face with her wings bound by chains. After purchasing a historical book of the region, I soon learned that the statue is referred to as the “Souless Angel.”
Legend has it that thousand of years ago, Buckleby was ravaged by a terrible plague, and an angel took pity of the poor, suffering townsfolk. She arrived and began healing the people. However, the greedy mayor sought to profit from the healing powers of the angel, and thus he captured the angel in chains. When the angel refused to cooperate with the mayor’s scheme, he gouged out her eyes in rage. Since the eyes are the windows to the soul, the angel was now essentially soulless. Outraged, the villagers rioted and freed the angel from the mayor’s imprisonment. The angel, weakened by the abuse at the hands of the mayor, could not return to the heavens, so she fled into the woods in the east. The next morning, all traces of the mayor and his home had completely disappeared. The villagers constructed the stone statue as a memorial to the angel, and rumour has it that the angel still resides within the forest to the east to this day.
After leaving the wagon and Jogg in the stables, everyone took this chance to explore around the village. The Elves Elwin and Dray went to the tavern for a meal, the Dwarf Rayna went to go pray at the church, and the others (Percy, Lard, and Diego) came with me to the town hall. After a wonderful evening of shopping and listening to Lard play music with several local musicians, we all headed over to the tavern to buy some drinks and relax before renting some rooms for the night.
However, early in the morning we were all awoken by the sounds of a man’s screams coming from the streets. Percy’s sharp eyes spotted a figure laying on the ground across the courtyard, and everyone rushed outside to see what had happened. Alas, the body was that of our caravan driver Jogg! His body was cold, though there were no signs of what could have killed the man. While Elwin used her druid-craft to determine if there was a magical cause for Jogg’s death, the old lady whom sold me the book the evening before, Mrs. “Gramms” Beachum, came rushing up. She claimed to have seen a pale, ghastly woman with long silver hair reach out and touch Jogg before vanishing into thin air. She says it was a ghost, and that it also stole two of her pigs. After calming her down, I left her with the local constabulary while the party moved Jogg’s corpse into the church. Elwin informed the group that it appears as though Necromancy has removed Jogg’s soul.
While we debated about what to do, we heard a chanting coming from outside. A crowd had gathered in the courtyard shouting “down with Arthus”, a local elderly wizard whom has a poor reputation with the townfolk. The crowd is led by a man called Malakai, the jeweller from the market the evening before. Malakai blames Arthus for the death of his wife several years ago, and accuses Arthus for the murder of Jogg as well. Lard manages to calm the crowd down, and the party heads up a small hill on the outskirts of town to question this Arthus. We are forewarned that the reclusive wizard has erected a magic barrier preventing anyone from entering his property.
Upon arriving at the house of Arthus, Elwin detects the powerful spell and most of us find the barrier impassable. Percy, however, uses his own magic to allow himself and Dray to easily pass through. They quickly convince Arthus to lower the barrier, and the group discusses the current situation with the elderly wizard. Arthus recognizes the method of Jogg’s death – his soul was removed, but there is still a chance that we could retrieve his soul and save the Halfling. He tells us that he has detected dark magic in the wind emanating from the woods to the east, and that we should search for an ancient grove where we might find the creature responsible. Arthus provides us with an amulet to protect one of us from necromantic energies, and a soul gem to hold Jogg’s soul if we can recover it. Before leaving, Dray slyly pockets a magic ring, which she hands over to Percy to investigate. He informs everyone it is a magic ring that makes the wearer stronger and more powerful, and encourages Diego to wear it.
As the party headed east towards the woods, we came across some tracks leading from a nearby farmhouse to the woods. We backtracked to the house to discover Mrs. Beachum and evidence that indeed two of her pigs were likely stolen in the night. Assuring her we would try to find her pigs, the group headed back towards the woods. As we followed the trail, we came across a semi-circular glade covered in shadows from the tall trees. The trunks are covered in spider webs, and the last thing I hear is Dray shouting “GIANT SPIDER!”
To Be Continued…