Try, Try Again (Recap of episodes 8-15)

They leave The Medusa’s Cascade in the early morning going to the Burgomaster’s house at the request of his son Ismark. The manor looks old, creepy, and unkempt. The team is hesitant about going into a house after their last traumatic experience. “Buckle up buttercup!” Glad declares to the team. Zechs gives Glad her bow back, thanking her for lending it to him, and starts to admire his new shortbow. The party makes their way to the tattered manor through the weed-chocked front yard. With a large fist, Galahad knocks on the door. Stabbing his greatsword into the ground next to him, he declares that Shanks do the talking and gives him an intimidating glare. 

Shanks is caught off guard by this. “Okay.. so who sent us?” he asks the rest of the party. “The burger guy…” Glad replies thoroughly creeped out by the appearance of the manor. “The Burgomaster’s son, Ismark,” Zechs corrects. “Ok. Well, I’ll let y’all handle all the talk since y’all know more about them.” Shanks declares uncomfortably. “We were all given the same information…” Zechs replies, exasperated by the back and forth. “Well, I know you all don’t want ME to do the talking,” Kyver chuckles. There is a bit of a pause in conversation then, “Alright, I’ll do it,” We’ahqa declares. Arguile immediately chimes in “No. No. Not him.” We’Aqua looks disappointed. 

As the party bickers amongst themselves about who will do the talking; a young, fair-skinned woman opens the door. It’s the Burgomaster’s daughter: a beautiful woman named Ireena. She informs them that the Burgermeister is dead and has been for several weeks now. She tells them that a pale, hauntingly handsome man named Strahd is visiting her in the night but she doesn’t remember anything that happens during these visits. We’Aqua asks for a description and starts to draw him. While We’ahqa works on the sketch, Ireena shows the party the two bite marks on her neck that are in different stages of healing. We’ahqa finishes their depiction of the man that Ireena described and the drawing is incredibly accurate. Ireena is frightened by how much it is. Glad is deeply disturbed and asks if Ireena will come with them to escape Strahd. 

Ismark, as well as the rest of the party, agree that this is the best course of action. He asks the party to take his sister anywhere but to Castle Ravenloft, where Strahd lives. The team is willing to help them but Kyver wants to get paid for helping. Shanks and Arguile also agree that they should be compensated for the task, however, We’ahqa and Glad disagree. Ismark tells the party that he isn’t wealthy but has some influence in town. Arguile asks if Ismark can talk to the local shopkeeper to lower the prices on his merchandise as payment. 

Ireena buts into the conversation and tells both the party and her brother that she has no intention of leaving the village. She argues that she is not a helpless damsel and doesn’t need to be whisked away. After some back and forth, Ireena finally agrees but only on the condition that the party takes her father’s body and lay him to rest across the village in the chapel’s cemetery. The party agrees and Shanks and Galahad lead the makeshift funeral procession to the cemetery. 

While walking to the church Zech sends Duo up into the sky to do some scouting and he spots something strange: a Water Genasi, a Kenku, a Wood-elf, and a Goliath leaving the tavern behind them. Duo flies down to We’Aqua and relays this to them. We’ahqa understands him and tells the group there’s another Genasi, like themself, but doesn’t fully relay the message. This sort of catches the party’s attention, but it doesn’t fully register as they’re more focused on burying the former Burgomaster. Minutes later they arrive at the chapel where they meet the priest, Donavich. His eyes are sunken and he looks like he’s in a bad way. 

He greets the party and thanks them for bringing him the villages fallen leader to be put to rest. He extends his hands and prays over the body and as he does an inhuman scream rings out from under the floorboards. Zechs and Galahad use their respective abilities: Primeval Awareness and Divine Sense to detect an undead presence within the chapel. “FATHER I’M STARVINGGG!” a feral voice cries out from underneath the chapel. Donavich explains that they must not go to the basement, as it is his son. 

Donavich tells them, “A little more than a year ago my son Doru, and several others were lored out of Barovia (the city/town/village) by a wizard in black robes.. by all counts the Wizard is dead and I thought my son was too… he’s not my son anymore..” He struggles with telling the story. Almost as if he is reliving the moment. “I can’t send him into town and I can’t kill him… no, this is a place of God.” Zechs cuts in: “Thankfully, I’m not a fan of religion. I can take care of him for you—”

“You can not kill him on these grounds!” Donavich protests. “I understand. This is a holy place and he’s your son but as you said he’s not your son. All I’m asking is if you want us to put him to rest,” Zechs replies carefully. “If it’s any consolation, I am a man of faith. I follow the teachings of Bahamut and he watches over my blade. I hope that you can trust that we only wish to do what is right.” Glad reminds the group that they still have to lay the Burgomaster to rest. Everyone concedes that they should do that before anything else. 

Realizing that Donavich isn’t willing to part ways with his son the group decides it’s not their problem and it’s time for them to go. We’Aqua tells the Priest that if there’s anything they could do they will. On their way out of the cemetery, Arguile reminds Ismark of his agreement to talk to the shopkeeper. They head back to Bildrath’s shop, most of the party going inside while We’ahqa waits with Duo outside. The party can buy some of the merchandise at what would be the regular price but is still left unsatisfied as the selection is lackluster at best.

All but Shanks, Arguile, and Kyver leave the shop. Shanks tries to sell the ring he found in the Death House, but the shopkeeper offers less than half of its value. The three of them decide to steal from him as payback for being a jerk. Shanks and Arguile run distraction for Kyver to steal some potions of healing. By asking rapid-fire questions about how much their different weapons would be worth, their plan seems to be working. However, Kyver has a different tactic in mind. He casually makes his way up to the counter where the other two are and in one fluid motion, grabs the owner’s head and slams it down through the display case, knocking him unconscious. Kyver steals 5 of his potions but gives one to the guy on his way out. 

Moments later, the party hears from outside the shop “Parriwimple, after them!” The party laughs at the name, but out of the front door comes a rather tall and buff-looking man with an angry expression on his face, followed by Bildrath, covered in blood. Ireena and Ismark are shocked by this and look to the party. Bildrath points to Kyver, exclaiming “It was that one. Don’t let him escape Parriwimple!” The rest of the party takes a step back from Kyver, but he is unphased. He looks over to Ireena and says, “don’t look at me, he slipped and fell.” With a critical success on his deception check, Ireena, Ismark, and Parriwimple believe him. 

The shopkeeper is confused. “I did not slip and fall through my display case.” But there is nothing he can do as Parriwimple pulls him back toward the shop, “Come on Uncle, let’s get you cleaned up.” With that, Ireena hurries the party out of the village. As they leave the area that surrounds the village of Barovia, the party sees old gallows made from a gnarled tree. As they approach it, the party sees what looks like an old corpse of a human swinging at the end of the rope. However, Kyver sees himself at the end of the rope and it makes him feel very unsettled about the next leg of their journey. Using his Primeval Awareness, Zechs detects a massive amount of undead energy emanating from the large castle on the cliff to the northeast that overlooks Barovia proper. He relays this to the party as they make their way into the woods with their new charge.

On their journey through the forest, they come upon a familiar site: a Vistani camp. But the closer they get to the camp, the more they realize that it isn’t just another camp, it’s the SAME camp. They make their way in and ask to meet with the matriarch of the caravan. The very same woman that they met in the fog greets them outside the largest tent. “I knew you would come,” Madame Eva declares. “You are here on a mission, a quest to free this land!” She beckons them into the tent and takes out tarot cards. 

“Ah, the three of swords! Go to the mountains and climb the tower guarded by the Golden Knights. There you will find your 1st treasure.” We’ahqa starts to mouth her next card, almost perfectly. “One of stars,” She continues. “Go to a place with dizzying heights where the stone is alive. There you will find your 2nd treasure.” She pulls out the next card and We’ahqa mimicking her voice says exactly what the card is. “4 of stars look for a home guarded by a great stone dragon. There you will find your final treasure.” Madame Eva is very caught off guard and stares at We’ahqa in disbelief. We’ahqa replies to her stunned expression with, “It’s ok, I’m freaked out a little bit too.”

Realizing that they won’t be receiving any more mystical knowledge from the caravan, the party asks for horses to aid in their quest. Madame Eva tells them the animals they have are for their livelihood and that none can be spared. The party concedes and makes their way out of camp and back into the forest. Galahad reluctantly gives We’ahqa a piggyback ride, warning “If you make one horse sound…” “I won’t!” We’ahqa quickly replies, making clicking noises instead.

Even here, in the mountains, the forest and the fog are inescapable. Ahead, the dirt road splits in two, widening toward the east. The party sees patches of cobblestone, suggesting that the eastern branch was once an important thoroughfare. Parked at the fork in the road, pointed east, is a large black carriage drawn by two black horses. The horses snort puffs of steamy breath into the chill mountain air. The side door of the carriage swings open silently. Ireena is frightened by the scene and the party decides to head away from the carriage. They eventually reach gates guarded by 2 headless statues. The gates open on their own. 

The party takes a rest for the evening. The watches are all very quiet, both in terms of things happening around them and the discussion between those awake and watching. In the remaining moments before dawn, a mist rolls in through the party’s camp revealing a tall, pale, hauntingly handsome man in formal attire standing above Galahad. Zechs and Attros awaken the rest of the party. Before anyone can make a move toward him, Strahd whispers something to Galahad, charming the Paladin into protecting him. The party is frozen in fear as Strahd then glides over to Ireena and gently touches her face. Wanting to protect her, We’ahqa wild shapes into a panther and charges toward Strahd.  

The party tries their best to defend their charge but Strahd seems to have an answer to everything they throw at him, with Galahad trying to stop the party from attacking him. Glad, Kyver, Attros, and We’ahqa all try to stop Strahd but it’s ineffective. The party talks among themselves saying this guy isn’t a joke and that he is toying with them. They’re not sure if they can take him. As they’re having this discussion, Strahd leans in toward Ireena’s neck and bites her. We’ahqa charges Strahd in panther form but transforms back into their regular form and tries to stop him. Strahd thanks the party for looking after his bride. The party is confused by this statement and after much debate, the team decides to leave Irena with him.

The party shakes off the harrowing experience and makes their way toward their destination without their charge. Meanwhile, Kyver hears whispers. They call for him to the windmill in the distance. Kyver manages to convince the rest of the party to check it out. They make their way to the rundown and seemingly abandoned windmill. Immediately upon entry, the party is hit with a foul smell and croaking coming from a chest in the corner of the small ground-floor enclosure. To their right, they see a set of spiral stairs leading up. Glad and We’ahqa make their way up them and are met by a woman with pastries. We’Aqua gives the woman a coin and asks for one. Glad has warning bells going off in her head and convinces them not to eat it. Glad points out the blood on her apron but We’ahqa is too focused on the pastry. 

Downstairs Galahad uses Divine Sense and detects three undead presences. The woman with the pastries tries to convince We’ahqa to eat a pastry. Before he can take one, the party realizes what is happening and they engage in combat with the woman, who turns out to be a Hag. After the party significantly damages her, she cries out, “SISTERS!” Two more Hags appear from the top floor. The party manages to defeat all of them, Shanks firing the kill shot on the original with a trick shot. The remaining two decide this isn’t a fight they can win, so they flee.

Glad, Galahad and We’ahqa make their way up to the top floor to check on what sounded like children that they heard during the battle. They find that they’d been sold by their parents to the hag. They ask to be taken to Ismark and Ireena, with the party being a bit cagey about the whereabouts of Ireena. They search around the windmill for anything of value and find some jewelry, potions, and a strange magic dagger that looks to be made of both steel and bloody bone.

As they leave the windmill, the Journeyman messages Shanks to see how things are going. Shanks replies with the situation at hand and the tavern appears minutes later down the way. Our intrepid adventurers make their way into the tavern and order some drinks for rest. The Journeyman begins to ask Shanks and the rest of the party what was going on. The battle is explained as well as the ordeal with Ireena and Strahd. Upset by this, the Journeyman stops time to have a private conversation with Shanks. Shanks explains their confrontation with Strahd in more detail and about the dagger that was found in the windmill. The dagger is called Bloodlust and Shanks decides to give it to Kyver.

Seeing that Kyver receives this new weapon, the rest of the party decides to ask for new stuff too. The Journeyman asks the party to make a list of things to keep a lookout for. He also suggests talking to the group’s Artificer: Attros. Shanks takes him up on this and Attros crafts a couple of vial arrowheads for acid. Attros also makes a bag of holding before retiring to rest with the rest of this group.

During the long rest, Kyver receives a vision from a dark and malevolent force within Barovia. The entity tells Kyver of the gift of Strahd’s power, the arrogance in its wielding, and their disdain for him and what he has done with their gift. They offer Kyver a deal: depose Strahd, kill the party, and rule over Barovia. Keep the dagger, gather a gift in the Amber Temple, and gain the power that Kyver craves. Kyver accepts.

Following their rest, the party is dropped at the Tsolenka Pass to make their way toward one of their objectives. Moments after the tavern leaves them in the cold and windswept terrain, it appears in front of them, and out walks another Water Genasi named Cereius. They learn that he is a cleric of the Moonweaver and that he received the same deal as the rest of the party. The team continues up the pass in search of the 1st treasure the “three of swords”. Ahead, through the wind and snow, they see a high wall of black stone lined with spikes and topped by statues of demonic vultures with horned heads. A closed iron portcullis is set in the center of the wall, behind which burns a curtain of green flame. On the other side of the dark wall, gripping the mountain’s edge is a guard tower of white stone topped by golden statues of mighty warriors. We’Aqua wants to touch the green flame. Arguile convinces him that he should touch it since he’s “fireproof”. Arguile gets burned badly but not as badly as We’Aqua would’ve been. 

We’ahqa and Cereius use the cold to their advantage and cast Shape Water to create an ice lift. The party manages to get over the gatehouse wall but once they reach the other side they realize that the statues are not what they appear to be. The statues shed their stone outer crust and two Vrocks fly down to attack the party. The party puts up a fight but Arguile goes down. Seeing his comrade go down, Shanks rapidly fires several arrows and kills the one responsible. Gaining ground, the party gangs up on the other one. While the final blows are being dealt to the creature, We’ahqa catches one of Zechs arrows mid-flight in their mouth and stabs the creature with it. Galahad goes down with a strike from the dying Vrock but Kyver uses this as a chance to take it out for good. The two clerics make their rounds to heal those that were hurt during the fight.

Zechs is pissed about what happened in the fight, especially with We’ahqa. Shanks and eventually We’aqha make their way over to smooth things over. We’ahqa offers to make arrows out of ice and give the two archers some disposable ammo to have a shoot-off. This seems to help and once everyone is healed and rested they make their way into the tower. It seems to have been abandoned for years. The party slowly makes its way up to the top of the tower. Ten-foot-tall, gold-plated statues stand atop the battlements, facing outward. Each one depicts a female human knight holding a lance. The cold wind stirs the snow, under which they see human skeletons clad in rusty mail. The swirling snow assumes the forms of thin, young women. The wind howls, “Begone! The treasure is ours!”

The party jumps into a battle with undead specters guarding something that had to do with their first Tarot card: the 3 of Swords. It’s a hard-fought battle, however, this fight is within the cleric’s and paladin’s wheelhouse. With Cereius, Glad, and Galahad leading the charge; the encounter ends rapidly. Upon defeating the guardians, the party finds a dusty old book. It turns out to be a personal journal of Strahd himself. Some of the party then decides that it would be a good idea to melt down the statues of the golden knights that surround the top of the tower. Hilarity ensues. 

Half of the party stays at the top of the tower to work on the statues while the other half makes its way down to the ground. After some time, the group on the tower decides to just topple a statue over the side to get it to the ground and worry about getting the gold off later. We’ahqa volunteers to wild shape into a bear and drag it toward the gateway with Arguile kind of helping push in the back.

While the shenanigans occur, the tavern shows up on the interior side of the gatehouse portcullis. While We’ahqa drags the partially melted statue over to the tavern, the rest of the party enters. After a less than stellar greeting by the party, sans We’ahqa and Arguile, Zechs shows the Journeyman what they found at this location: Strahd’s journal. JM is somewhat impressed but questions the party about where We’ahqa and Arguile are. He’s directed to the window where he sees We’ahqa pulling and Arguile pushing a massive statue.

Tension arises between JM and Kyver as he explains what was going on with the statue. However, the tension doesn’t dissipate as the Journeyman questions the party further. After a fairly lengthy conversation, the issue is resolved and is chalked up to a misreading of the situation. The Journeyman concedes that he wasn’t clear about how he was willing to help and that he will provide a seed for a party fund to help the group focus on the reason that they’re in Barovia. The party then speaks about where the next destination and the next tarot card. The village of Krezk is brought up as the place to head to. 

In preparation for the following day, Shanks and Attros head into the workshop. Shanks takes the different tinctures from the Hag’s hovel and analyzes them. He’s able to refine them into usable and replicable formulas. Attros spends his time refining the vial arrows that he made the last time the party was in the tavern. They then work in tandem to create and fill some of the vial arrows with poison and holy oil. Once those are complete, Attros begins to make a prototype for a harness. This harness is for Duo and is made specifically to mount Attros’ Eldritch Cannon onto Duo’s back. However, the concept winds up being a bit more complex than originally theorized. Within the tavern proper, We’ahqa spends their time with their medicine and herbalism kit to make two potions of healing. They also spend some time copying ritual spells into their hand-made spell book.

While all of this happens, Zechs heads back into the Journeyman’s office with JM to have a conversation. They speak about their two encounters with the same Vistani camp. Zechs brings up the subject of Tabaxi and if JM has seen others like him. The Journeyman confirms that he’s seen others like him. The two go on to speak about Zechs’ memory loss. Waking up in an alley with no memory of who he was and how he’d gotten there. For several years, he was able to get by and eventually met Argo and the Shuffle Guild. The conversation turns back to his memory loss and the ominous message given to him by the Vistani woman Madame Eva. The Journeyman gives him a range of possibilities as to why he may not have access to those memories. He then suggests that Zechs should get to know the rest of his party a bit better and that Glad would be the one to talk to. It ends with talking about time and the Journeyman’s role in the grander scheme of things. As Zechs leaves the office, he reaches out for a handshake. He notices that there is a slight glimmer of golden dust floating off of the Journeyman’s hand as well as his face when he meets his eye.

Galahad, We’ahqa, and Zechs make their way into the workshop and ask for help making new equipment. Shanks makes acid and poison arrows. Galahad asks We’ahqa and Attros if they could help make him a Javelin. We’ahqa uses Shape Water to make one from ice. Attros uses it to make a mold and to forge a real one. As Galahad and We’aqha make their way back out to the tavern area, Shanks shares something with Attros as they finish up. Shanks is a nickname. His actual full name is Shankise Minknasi. A mispronunciation that stuck, a way for him to distance himself from his past in some form.

Kyver and Welby the Halfling bartender sit down and drink together. After a few rounds on the house, Kyver tells him his story. He finds out the reason why Kyver hates humans: a nobleman raided his village, murdered the adults, and took the children, hostage. The nobleman’s son was especially offputting to Kyver. He speaks of his friend Todd, the fighting pits, and his troubles within his captivity. Kyver talks about having to kill his friend to eat. Welby floats the idea that maybe not all humans are as terrible as Kyver thinks. The pair bond over giving their party members crap. Kyver decides he likes Welby but soon passes out from drinking after making a fool of himself in front of the Journeyman.

Stepping over the passed-out Kyver, the Journeyman makes his way over to Arguile and Cereius at the bar and asks what is on their mind. Arguile says he doesn’t enjoy being scolded for doing something he didn’t know he wasn’t supposed to do. JM questions, why don’t they ask? Arguile tells him it isn’t his nature to ask for help. They end up discussing why the party, especially Arguile, has trouble asking questions and for help. He then asks Cereius how he is doing with his new party and offers words of encouragement. Eventually, the rest of the party makes their way into the tavern area. JM proceeds to clarify his stance and how his help will be given from this point forward. He will provide the party with an “expense account” to help with anything that the party might need. 

We’ahqa asks JM to upgrade his scimitar. Arguile hands his rapier to JM and as this happens Kyver lets out a horrid fart causing Zechs to vomit. Attros uses his magical tinkering to mask the smell with a mug over his beak. Zechs asks Welby for a drink to clear his mouth. Welby grabs a drink and walks toward Zechs. He soon smells the fart and throws up on Kyvers back. They try to clean him up because he’s passed out but they make more of a mess. Zechs brings up the Tome of Strahd and poses the question of where the party should go. Shenanigans ensue when the group tries to clean up Kyver and Attros uses Ray of Frost to cover his hand in ice to backhand Kyver into waking up. Glad nopes out. 

The next day the party makes their way back into the tavern, with Zechs and Galahad having a conversation about the gods. Kyver wants to drink more but Zechs convinces Welby to make halfling coffee for Kyver. Kyver enjoys the coffee and offers some to the rest of the party. Cereius and We’ahqa take him up on it. Attros tries to fuck with the coffee by altering its smell and is successful. The three of them all drink the coffee anyway. All three of them become incredibly jacked up. If they weren’t awake before, they’re awake now. 

We’ahqa gets incredibly animated and requests Shanks to teach him how to focus. Glad casts the Calm Emotion spell and it works but not for We’ahqa. Shanks jumps up and runs him through physical training, following him like a drill sergeant, doing ladder drills, super jumps, and fetch. We’ahqa conjures a flaming scimitar at Shanks’s request, begins swinging it wildly, and hits Shanks with it twice. We’aqha, now realizing that he’s hit his friend, begins to snap out of it and heals him. In the aftermath, Shanks asks Welby for a sample of the coffee. The party decides that instead of Shanks being in charge, Zechs should take over that role. He begrudgingly takes the mantle of leadership and asks for everyone’s support. Eventually, the party heads out to Krezyk to seek more information about what they’re up against. Before they leave, Galahad hands the Journeyman his extra greatsword to be upgraded along with the rapier and scimitar.

The party makes their way through the pass and into the forest after leaving the tavern. Traveling north, out of the mountain range, and back toward the small pockets of civilization, they discuss what they should be looking for and how they should go about getting the information they need. Attros suggests finding the marketplace in Krezk when they arrive. Eventually, they come to a crossroads with a signpost. There are three signs: North to Krezk, Northeast to Vallaki, and Southwest toward The Wizard of Wines. As they make ready to head north, the party is ambushed by druids and a plethora of twig blights. The party makes quick work of the enemies and continues their way north, sending out their familiars and animal companions to scout ahead. 

The road is clear ahead but there seems to be a tower on a small lake not too far north of where they are now. Planning, the party decides to potentially split into a stealth group and a battle group for a tactical retreat and ambush if there is trouble. Zechs and Attros believe that this tower is the tower that is mentioned in their Tarot card reading. Splitting into the two groups; Zechs, Attros, Kyver, Arguile, and Shanks make their way stealthily toward the tower using the spell Pass Without A Trace. We’ahqa sends Franchise with the party as an extra means of precaution.

They come up to a stone tower that is old and decrepit, with collapsing scaffolds clinging to one side where a large gash has split the wall. Timeworn griffon statues, their wings, and flanks covered with moss perched atop buttresses that support the walls. Parked near the base of the tower is a barrel-topped wagon spattered with mud. Franchise is instructed to check out the wagon. There is a fresh coat of paint on the outside with brass lanterns and a sign that reads “Keep Out”. Before moving closer, the party decides to check out the statues at the base of the tower, taking a lesson from the day before. Arguile takes a shot with his short bow at the gargoyles, with nothing happening. 

Satisfied that the statues will not come to life, the group turns their attention back to the cart. Using Mage Hand, Arguile tries to pick the lock from a distance of 30ft. While this is happening, part of the group heads over to the tower to try and find out a way inside. They find a strange-looking puzzle lock on the front door. Attros reaches out to touch the door to cast Identify, and as he does a field of lightning bursts out from the tower. Most of the group can react in time to not take the brunt of the damage. Not wanting to fuck with the tower anymore, the group turns their attention back to the wagon. The rest of the party makes sure to give both Arguile and Zechs a wide birth while they pick the lock. On this second attempt, Arguile picks the lock. They all agree to back up and use Mage Hand to open the door. An explosion rocks the area, and everyone except for Zechs and Shanks is knocked unconscious. 

The other group sees the explosion and rushes to the rest of the party. Zechs casts cure wounds on the three unconscious party members. Galahad tries to ascertain what happened but is only able to see the lightning crackling around the tower and a pile of smoking wood. We’ahqa, noticing that Shanks is on the verge of collapse and having a bit of a grasp on how Cereius’s ability works, walks over to Shanks and says “Hey, I’m sorry about this but it’s for your benefit,” and clocks him. Shanks goes unconscious and the rest of the party freaks out. We’ahqa just tells everyone to wait and Cereius walks over to heal him. Shanks is now revitalized. We’ahqa explains to Shanks why he did it. Shanks says “That’s 2,” and leans in to hug him. 

There are several different “discussions” that happen afterward. Kyver, We’ahqa, and Arguile bicker over the scaffolding. Shanks, Galahad, and Zechs discuss what they learned from this experience. Attros shows Cereius what happened with Magical Tinkering. They eventually decide to continue toward Krezk. They converse with each other on their travels about various subjects, mostly just how the whole day has gone to shit. The party eventually makes its way to an elevated settlement with high walls. 

Approaching the gatehouse at the end of the road, they see several guards along the wall. Zechs speaks out first letting them know that they’re travelers seeking a place to stay and some information. A guard responds to them, asking what information they seek. Zechs tells the guard that they’re on a quest and Kyver chimes in saying that he needs a place to take a shit. Zechs is not overly pleased by this and lets him know. Galahad tries to get him to shut up but it doesn’t seem to have any effect. We’ahqa does end up persuading him to stay quiet. They wait outside the walls for the Burgomaster. Eventually, an older man comes down to talk to the party, flanked by two guards. The party explains their situation, however, the Burgomaster lets the party know that he will not be able to help them. We’ahqa picks up that something is wrong and tries to help push the conversation in the direction of helping. Shanks offers to help on the party’s behalf. The Burgomaster tells them that a shipment of wine is late in coming, if the party helps to bring it there Krezyk may be able to help them.

The party agrees, but Arguile bargains to get Kyver into the gates to do his business. The gates open and a host of guards let Kyver in. After some tom-foolery involving wiping, Kyver is brought back out and the party begins their journey back the way they came.

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