Chapter 2, Part II: Hope is Waning

Wet, tired and downtrodden, the heroes decided they had no choice but to seek Rigmund’s aid once more. However, there was still the issue of the Westport survivors: they plead with the heroes to take them along wherever they were going. A plan was hatched to take the survivors with them and head to Northolm, stopping to see Rigmund on the way.

Late that night, once they were only a short ride from Rigmund’s cabin, the adventurers and survivors made camp for the night. Al, Swiftslash and Mithros rode off to meet Rigmund while Torynn and Mylona kept watch at the camp. Inside the warm cabin, Rigmund was still shaken at the knowledge of Westport’s destruction. He told them that they must follow Crenton and his army to Sorrowsworn Keep to prevent the wake of destruction from spreading further across the land. He also said he would accompany them to aid in the difficult task ahead.

The three plus Rigmund returned to camp. Not wishing to delay their attack on Sorrowsworn any longer, Rigmund devised a plan to get the survivors safely to Northolm sans the party. He cast a spell and momentarily five figures strode out of the forest towards the survivors. They looked exactly like the heroes. Rigmund said the illusory heroes would escort the band safely to Northolm and bade the party follow him to Sorrowsworn.

After a long journey through the plains and Serpent’s Run Woods, Rigmund stopped them. Just through the trees stood Sorrowsworn Keep, its dark, decrepit stone towers jutting out of the mountainside like a scab. Rigmund explained that he knew a secret entrance to the keep that would allow them to bypass the main, heavily guarded gates. Sprinting through the trees and tall grass, they arrived at the hidden entrance unseen. The dark passage beyond was little more than an overgrown sewer, and smelled as such.

Rigmund led them deeper underneath the keep through the dark filth until they came to a large pool. The area seemed deserted until Torynn accidentally slipped as he was crossing the pool, landing with a splash into the murky water below. Out of the rippling muck rose an alien creature: a green gelatinous cube that began inching its way towards them, driven by some horrific instinct… The heroes immediately recoiled at the beast, and a desperate battle unfolded. The ruckus alerted a small band of goblins within the tunnels, who quickly joined in the fray—taking advantage of the heroes’ distraction. Luckily, Rigmund was able to assist with his magic, and the party eventually felled the goblins and the gooey entity, which collapsed into a puddle of green ooze.

They soon came to a ladder with light visible overhead; the way into the keep proper. Rigmund cautioned that they were within the gates, but there would still be guards ahead. Mylona utilized a few moments of magic-induced invisibility to scout ahead and confirmed that Rigmund was right: the grate above them led into a courtyard which was riddled with guards. They decided that surprise was their best chance of getting through, and charged up the ladder into the courtyard. Unfortunately, before the heroes could could reach the inner gate, they’d been nearly surrounded by soldiers and archer fire. Crenton and his archers stood high above, visible from a balcony. He taunted them, and ordered the guards to dispatch of the intruders…



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