The Case of the Curvy Chameleon
Following the rumor mill of the Lucky Barrel, the Bodnock Saints traveled to Darwen Cross to discover what might have happened to the wizard Naldrin, his apprentice, and his tower. A quick visit to the local tavern revealed that something was a little out-of-place. A couple of days before the arrival of the Bodnock Saints, the tower had exploded and a dark rider was seen riding away. Beyond that, the citizens of Darwen Cross were clueless. Baffled but not discouraged, the Saints also met a dingily attired wizard, who came to seek tutelage from Naldrin, . Badok suggested pooling his resources with the Saints to find out what really happened at Naldrin’s Tower. Resolved, the group was prepared to search the ruins, but were thrown off by a strange man who at once appeared to be in the tavern but in the next moment was gone and replaced with a nondescript girl.
The girl, feeling the eyes of the four, began to make for the door with Badok in hot pursuit. While Badok attempted to track the girl, the other Saints sat in wait; however, Killian Hargrim sought relief from his wounds sustained in his fight with Magra the Vile from the local temple and bade the group to go on without him. He would remain in Darwen Cross until the group had found its answers, and he was feeling better.
Badok continued his pursuit but eventually lost the girls trail in a crowded street. Seemingly without any place left to go, Badok reconvened with the group, and the three allies decided to investigate the ruins. After convincing the Drifter guards to let them investigate, Badok found magic residue scattered across the site like glitter. Although the group was able to find a few magical trinkets, the only real clue they were able to find was the detonation site that leveled the tower. After a while, onlookers stood at the property’s edge. One of the onlooker, a suspicious, red-mustachioed figure, made a retreat as the group approached, but with a little magic and some crafty arrow shooting, he was foiled. Unable to escape, the red-headed man revealed his true identity: Lyssa, Naldrin’s apprentice!
It Was a Really ‘Hot’ Act
After her capture and some questioning, Lyssa revealed that she was asleep when the attack came, and her last memory was seeing Naldrin raise a shield around her as the tower tore apart and she blacked out. She hinted that Naldrin was onto something big, which may have invited trouble, but she was not ready to reveal exactly what until the Saints were able to gain her trust. Lyssa’s friend, Maugrim Oakwarg, a journeyman wizard was being held until his execution for being found guilty of immolating an Ihmisian noblewoman at a trade dinner.
The group agreed to look into it, but time was running shirt for Oakwarg: with two days of travel to Firewine Crossing, they would only have one day to conduct an investigation before the wizard was killed. The Drifters and many of the guests at the dinner seemed skeptical of Maugrim’s ability to kill the noblewoman but stated that someone would need to be sacrificed to appease the Ihmisan visitors and try to maintain some diplomacy.
The Saints began their investigation, and after some questioning of servants and nobles alike, they were able to track down a servant from the Ihmisian envoy, who was behaving suspiciously. The servant Tip was avoiding the governor’s mansion and had been seen shuffling around the docks, where the Ihmisian adviser to Lord Raysdan of Furain, Ellesar Montrain was also looking for Tip. Hoping to entrap Tip, the Saints set up a high stakes game of dice. Once Tip made his appearance known, the Saints tried to catch him for questioning, but they were forced into greater action once Ellesar and his escort attacked Tip.
After a scuffle at the docks, Ellesar demanded the arrest of Tip, but not before Tip raised some suspicion of his master, Ellesar. Attempting to pursue the truth, the Saints returned with Ellesar to the governor with the intent of speaking to the High Lord of Furain. The governor, however, refused their request stating that they had accomplished their goal of freeing Maugrim Oakwarg and they had someone who would take the punishment for killing the Lady Mallora. Maugrim, freed, sent an animal messenger to Lyssa to proclaim his safety and the role the Saints played in his freedom.
A Bit of Back and Forth
Back in Darwen Cross, Lyssa thanked the Saints and revealed more details into what her master was studying. Naldrin had been researching rumors of The Three Kingdoms and specifically, a tome which might initiate the next move of these dark agents that had been plaguing the Riverlands: Darnissa’s Tome of Ruined Existence. According to Lyssa, the tome is rumored to lie in the Castle of Broken Worlds, deep in Hoorstone. Lyssa also stated that the book could be used to revive Naldrin, and with his help the group would be able to route and defeat the enemies that lurk about.
With this information, the group made for the dangerous, monster-ridden Castle of Broken Worlds, working deeper into the ruined elven citadel in hopes of finding Darnissa’s Tome.