Date: early Trical, 1333 Avard
The Black Feather Troupe plus Roland raced through the falling snow at night as fast as they could. Missus Melbourne, Hiko's owl familiar, scouted ahead until she found the carriage they chased. She dropped off It, Chimes' familiar – a centipede of unusual size – and then returned to the Hiko.
The group trailed the carriage that had dropped off the last two werewolves to the fight to the Lord of Red Wall's manor. They agreed that they should rest, first, before returning. They left It to keep track of the carriage, and then returned through the snow storm to the Blue Tyven.
The next morning, having identified all of the strange items in the wagon they stole from the warehouse, they returned to the Hall of Lord Red Wall during still-heavy snowfall. They very nearly burned it to the ground, and only the glimpse of a child's toy convinced them not to. Instead, they burst in using Roland's armor and Hiko's charming spells. Only one werewolf attacked, and Roland easily put it in its place.
Toox and Chimes discovered quickly that Eingrim was actually a friend of Lord Red Wall's – Eingrim had delivered two of Lady Red Wall's children! The Lord of Red Wall had, indeed, pinned them for demon summoners – but no one had known the Black Feather Troupe was with Eingrim, except the werewolf Mik and his pack. With Mik dead, no one in the manor had any idea that Eingrim had been kidnapped. The Lord of Red Wall immediately dispatched the werewolf (who had barely survived Roland) and a very taciturn thug to help the team investigate.
At the warehouse, the troupe went through box after box, even discovering a few more magical items that were supposed to have been loaded on the wagon. They realized that all of the boxes were labeled with the same ship name: Drumkin. The Lord of Red Walls used the troupe as a distraction to move the enchanted items, and then used the demons to clear the ship so that he could bid on it, hire sailors, and then use the Drumkin to move more illegal wares – like the magical items.
After crossing icy docks in the middle of the storm, they boarded the ship and began their search for Eingrim. Hiko used a spell that could find objects, and they focused on Eingrim's unique robes. They found his body stuffed into a locker, missing the right hand, blue. He had died of the cold while he was in the locker. Had the troupe found him in the night, Eingrim would have lived.
Roland carried Eingrim's stiff body over one shoulder, and followed the others as they left the ship. His hands trailed along the dry timbers below decks, leaving a trail of fire. Xoriah's blessing was the fire of righteous fury, and Roland knew he could never let the ship carry another cursed item. It had killed too many people, already.
On the slippery dock, the taciturn thug and the werewolf turned on the party when they saw the Drumkin burning. The thug turned into an ogre magi, taking to the skies and hurling a fireball down at the troupe. Hiko engaged the ogremai in a battle of the arcane, while Chimes took down the werewolf without breaking a sweat.
The ogremai was a whole different story. It threw Roland into the river, brought up a magical darkness, beat down on Hiko, and made Chimes scared enough that she retreated with Eingrim's body. At one point, even Hiko thought to run away, perhaps to get the Guard or tell the Baron Complan of the ogremai.
Despite the cold and the ogremai, Toox would not stop. Roland pulled himself back onto the dock, cold, but not dead, steam pouring off of him with his anger.
Hiko remembered the bag of devouring. Toox, Hiko, and Roland fought the ogremai toe-to-toe, trying to get the bag to devour the huge foe. They dodged, they struck, they tossed, each taking turns, trying to find a way to get the monster into the bag. They succeeded once, the bag instantly devouring the ogremai, but its sheer strength let it escape, and they found themselves back to dodging, tossing, and trying to hit a nine foot ogre magi with a bag.
They managed to get the ogremai back into the bag one more time, and Hiko used every last bit of magic he had left to blast the bag, destroying it. The ogremai, according to arcane theory, was randomly deposited in another dimension.
They sat on the icy dock for a few moments, catching their breath, barely believing their luck.
DM's Notes: I would've given Roland his second holbrace sooner, but in uncharacteristically greedy behavior, Michael kept having Roland look at his forearms, hoping he had earned them. I had to hold off until he earned them without looking. That was an amazing fight against the ogre, but the troupe's decision to wait until morning, have a lazy breakfast, take their time, and slowly creep out to the Lord of Red Wall's manor doomed poor Eingrim. Besides, if he hadn't frozen to death, he would have been a werewolf.
None to date.