Our celebration in the elven village was short-lived. From the tree line came the most unearthly laugh, a deep guttural warbling. Suddenly the villagers scattered and ran to their homes. D’Arcon grabbed the arm of an valley elf, named Vandal, who explained we were all about to be attacked by gnolls.
Three, seven foot tall dog-faced furies sprung forth from the undergrowth all wielding bardiches in single hand! Quickly we struck first, D’arcon with an illusion of an angry red dragon from his new wand and Leuwiss, with a ray of enfeeblement. The Rhennee ranger fumbled for arrows as Echo stepped in to critically injure the enfeebled gnoll as the other two yelled to their troop hiding in the tree line to retreat into the mountains. Echo turned triumpantly away from the slumped pile of hyena fur with a small sack of coinage in his hand.
We stayed the night in the village with Legrand at the idani orchard while D’arcon had a tryst with the elf, Vandal, while permission was sought to bring the ship into the valley.
We were then given permission to pilot our ship in next to the village so that meant we had to hike back to where we had landed at the mouth of the valley. Halfway into the journey our passage was impeded by a large, carnivorous ape. It charged at Echo and he dodged. The thing beat the ground and bellowed and pounced on D’arcon, biting and clawing at him. Everyone sprung into action with swords, magic missiles, and arrows and put the raging thing down. D’arcon was badly wounded and the ranger bound his wounds.
Very little happened until we reached Tortuga, aside from being followed by the “Tree People” – a lost tribe of humans who inhabit the treetops in the valley. They just watched us return to our ship. Leuwiss’ disappointment came when we boarded to find his sister ,Marjolaine, a stow-away, gleefully making breakfast. After some very stern words and making her understand she’s probably been reported missing and given our little escapade with the Scarlet Brotherhood before we left Greyhawk, the Spelloyals were probably beside themselves.
After breakfast, we piloted the ship to the elven village and landed in the lake nearby. We loaded the idani fruit into cargo with help from the elves, made payment, and were approached again by First Captain Darkspring. He offered that if we were interested in performing some unknown tasks to be discussed when we returned, we’d be rewarded. D’arcon opted to stay behind while we took our cargo up and then down again into Greyhawk City.
Upon return to the Valley, we knew several things. The Scarlet Brotherhood were “gone” but Simone was working her contacts to find more information out, fears grew in Greyhawk with violent attacks on the rise and people beginning to whisper wildly about the state of affairs there, and D’arcon was extremely uneasy about anything we did or said. Upon our return we were instructed to land at another larger town called Moonhollow, deeper in the valley. This is where they had moved D’arcon for questioning.
D’arcon and Leuwiss had a very lively, yet quiet debate in the corner of an inn in Moonhollow where Leuwiss was enlightened to the various methods in which information was quickly passed to those in power in the Vale. D’arcon seemed somehow less happy about the idea of coming to the Vale. During questioning, he met this mysterious “First Protector”, a drow named, Tysiln San. She insisted on doing the interrogation herself. It seemed they had searched our ship when we were making our way into the Vale, took samples of our hair from our beds, and nearly had Vandal executed for letting D’arcon know casually about the Vale’s defenses while making pillow talk.
Also, because of the trouble we caused in Greyhawk, Leuwiss’ parents have asked him to also look after his sister. It seems the two warehouse cats were poisoned and several batches of candy were tainted with something and had to be disposed of immediately. This was in a period of 48 hours. Leuwiss has reluctantly taken his 8 year old sister on as a cabin boy, for all intents and purposes, at the behest of the Spelloyals.
After a few drinks at the inn and getting paranoid, we decided that it might be safer to talk amongst ourselves inside the confines of the turtle ship. In the relative privacy of the ship D’arcon let us know that the powers within the Vale were giving us time to talk. While Leuwiss was insistent that the Vale was a benevolent dictatorship, pointing to the high literacy rate and study of art, D’arcon felt that while they did promise to reward us with various things, including some vital information to D’arcon’s birth, he worried that we might find our lives snuffed out if we fell out of favor.
This idea in D’arcon’s head was only further fueled by how long we’ve waited in Moonhollow for word from our taskmasters, now on day two, causing the companions to get a little twitchy.