Unknown to Jean-Loche and Everdeen, they were being watched. But not by any Hobgoblin hit squad or orcs with arrows trained. They were being watched by a bard and a wizard. The wizard was named Will, a simple practitioner of the art of magic, a student. He had hired the bard that stood beside him to protect him on his journey to recover the Slaying Stone. They used the fight in the slums as a distraction, slipping into Gorzzibad unnoticed and making their way to the mercenaries.
Will immediately began questioning the pair about their purpose in the town. Everdeen, a trusting soul, almost answered but was cut short by a suspicious Jean-Loche. Bardita stood silent, ready to attack the pair if they tried to harm her contract. Speelock attempted to escape during the confrontation, but was stopped with a magical cage from Will. Eventually, the four agreed to say what they were looking for at the same time, and counted to three. Each said “The Slaying Stone”, and decided to team up in their search inside the dangerous city. During this conversation, they had been surrounded by Kobold archers, and were told to enter a run-down building or else they would be littered with arrows. Bardita, adding a little magic to her words to nudge the Kobolds, told them that she was simply an adventurer killing any goblin who she saw harassing a Kobold. They believed her, cheering and beckoning the party inside. Confident that the they were now safe, they moved into the building.
Bardita was surrounded by Kobolds eager to hear her tales as soon as they entered. Jean-Loche and Everdeen spoke with what appeared to be the leader of the Kobolds. He was frail and old, but wore a fairly nice robe, silk lined. He told them that he knew what they were searching for, and could suggest places to look, but only if the group agreed not to attack any Kobolds they saw. Jean-Loche and Everdeen agreed to these terms, reasoning that they would need allies inside Gorzzibad if they were to make it through the night. He told the pair to search the nearby temples to Tiamat and Iou for the stone, and they departed. Will had searched the entire building during this, thinking the Kobold’s had stolen the stone and were keeping it, but found nothing.
They quietly stalked the buildings and roads during mid-day, avoiding goblin patrols easily as they made their way to the temple of Tiamat. Inside, they discovered a group of goblins guarding the wizard Speelock spoke of earlier, and attacked. Most of the goblins were cut down quickly through a combination of spell and blade. Rort, the goblin wizard, put up a good fight, blasting Jean-Loche and Everdeen’s spirit bear with powerful blasts of black lighting. However, eventually he was bested and was decapitated with a mighty swing from Jean’s sword. They searched the building and found a cloth bag. Stitched to the side were three words reading “Do Not Open” in common. Bardita slipped the bag onto her belt and they continued on towards the temple of Iou. Jean was spotted on the way and used himself as a distraction so that the group could clear a lot of ground, taking an arrow in the shoulder before eventually finding his way back to the party and losing his goblin attackers.
The temple to Iou was twice as large as the one to Tiamat. In the center stood a human male, long brown hair draped to his shoulders. He was a haughty sort of handsome, and wore nobleman’s clothes, although they looked to be quite tattered. He approached the group and began to ask them what they were searching for, uneasily watching Bardita, who was walking around in her Werewolf form. They refused to tell him, but he took a guess and began to tell them where he thought it might be, as it was not with him. Before he could finish his sentence the door to the temple swung open a fierce yell filled the room. He yelled “kill the wolf mans” and then, seeing Bardita, yelled “kill all the wolf mans!” and had his group charge. The backdoor thudded and shook, goblins attempting to force their way in from both sides. Will had been caught off guard, as he had been performing a ritual to search for the stone during the conversation. Goblin axes and short swords cut at his flesh and tore his robe, but he stood, a powerful evocation forming on his lips… and lit the entire room he was in on fire.
Blood poured from his wounds as the party charged in to help him, but they were stopped by the sudden transformation of the man they had met. Fur burst from his body and he lunged at the group, feral and savage. A werewolf. Bardita finished off the remains of the goblin forces just as Will managed to sedate the werewolf with a sleep spell, then another score of goblins made their way through the back door. They let loose a volley of arrows, one injuring Jean but most flying about uselessly. Everdeen’s spirit bear mauled one to death, and Bardita ran another through with her sword. Jean Loche finished off the remaining three with surprising finesse, and the fight was very quickly over.
Will recovered a silver blade (now known as Triflik’s Blade) off the one who had been charging, and realized he was still alive. He was bound to a table and interrogated as the nobleman came to, no longer a savage beast. The goblin swore he knew nothing, and was killed by the nobleman with a single slash from his rapier. Jean, angered, told him he had no honor, as slaying a helpless hostage was not his way. The nobleman replied with a smug grin and an introduction, he was Kiris Hoyat, former heir to the city of Kiris Moran… now known as Gorzzibad. His father had hoped that by leaving him to the goblins, they would be satisfied and they would leave the neighboring towns alone. But Kiris has put up a good fight, and was still alive and fighting. Will rudely interjected that his lycanthropy might of had something to do with his being left as well, to which Kiris simply agreed.
They convinced him to stay with their group on the condition that they would take him to Neverwinter after they left, and he agreed, cleaning the goblin blood from his weapon and agreeing not to let his feral nature take control of him unless absolutely necessary. He told him that he had reason to believe a dragon had made its lair in the baths of the city, and recounted that dragons were well known for hoarding treasure. They decided to head there, out of leads.
Inside was a tall, powerfully built Orc woman, searching the building left and right. Bardita decided it would be a good time to discover what was in the bag she had found, and convinced the Orc it was in fact her bag and that she should open it, without even using any magical tricks. Orcs are dumb. When she opened the bag, a powerful gale of wind smashed into her and sent her flying into the ceiling. The crunching sound of bone was heard, and she landed with a thud, dead. Bardita was quite excited about her magical bag of wind, and recovered it off the corpse. The group explored the baths, and Will soon discovered it’s lair. They went inside cautiously, no weapons drawn.
And wandered into the lair of a Brass Dragon.
The dragon awoke from a slumber, and spoke with a tired, irritated voice. Female. They used flattery and good intentions when speaking to the dragon, careful not to anger something that could easily squash each of them with a flick of it’s tail. Through some silly compliments and honest intentions of destroying the stone, the dragon handed it over.. To Everdeen, whom the dragon felt was the most trustworthy. She told Everdeen to keep it close, and make sure it was destroyed. She went on to explain that the Slaying Stone was one of the most powerful magical artifacts from before The Ruining, and that if it fell into the wrong hands it could be devastating, as it had the power to kill anyone the wielder desired.
Will eyed it, a gleam in his eye.