Date: Towerday 15th Lowsun, Year 619.
Time: Early Evening
Last time we left our heroes, they had travelled to the village of Saltmarsh; and were investigating the Baldurus Estate. This long ruined manor sits several hours outside of Saltmarsh. Having explored the mansion, they discovered a prisoner named Ned. The parties wizard, William, had sent his squirrel familiar, Junior, into the attic. Only for the small squirrel to be slain by an unseen attacker.
Shocked by the sudden death of his familiar, William let out a scream before sharing the cause of his concern with the rest of the party. Thinking on his feet, William then summoned forth an illusion of a squirrel. He sent it scurrying just inside of the attic. As William’s squirrel scurried up, Shiloh stood with their quarterstaff ready to swat whatever emerged from the attic. As the squirrel scurried into the attic, there was the flapping of leathery wings, and a horrendous sight appeared. A bat-like insect swooped on the squirrel, and with lightning accuracy, Shiloh batted the creature. The creatures caprice broke from the blow.
Stirred by the sound, several more of the insects started to descend. Theseus uttered a prayer to his god and sent worth a wave of thunderous energy. This cacophonous blast tore apart the remainder of the creatures, and almost caused the roof to collapse.
Having thoroughly explored the first two floors of the Baldurus mansion, the heroes decided that they should take a look in the cellar. Shiloh and Hekate strode into the musty rotting kitchen. The shelves collapsed under years of neglect. Examining the room further, they noticed movement from beneath the skin, and four giant centipedes skittered from underneath. Sensing a potential food source, the insects snaked toward the pair. With help from the party, the four bugs where quickly dispatched and the group carefully made their way downstairs.
The cellar was small; with an empty wine rack against one wall and a body lying in the centre of the room. Theseus made his way towards the corpse, intent on examining it. As the Triton touched the body, it felt squidgy. As he recoiled in horror, he noticed several small milky maggots burrowing into his skin. Hundreds of the tiny creatures wriggled out from the body and moved towards Theseus and his comrades.
Jumping into action, William produced his amethyst dagger and uttered several magical phrases. The flame danced along the blade and flew towards the swarms of maggots. The tiny creatures sizzled and popped with the heat but continued to surge forward. Between the concerted effort of the entire group, the grubs were destroyed and scattered. Theseus managed to remove the small creatures which had burrowed into his skin.
The group discovered that the body was a human who had been beaten to death. William was able to pocket a particularly expensive bottle of wine, depicting a jauntily dressed unicorn. He’d seen Adara with this particular vintage before and was aware of its considerable value. He surreptitiously pocketed the bottle before the rest of the party noticed. Further inspection of the room discovered a secret door on the wall.
Opening the secret door lead into a larger well lit room, with clear signs of inhabitation. In one of the corner, a warm cooking pot sat, the stew still hot. Several tables scattered around the room were set for a meal, and several bedrolls lay against a wall. A quick search of the place found nothing of value; however, two doors led into adjoining rooms.
The first door led into a bedroom. A bed was set in one corner and a writing desk in the opposite. As the group searched the room, William was delighted to find three books sitting on the counter; a naval almac, a treatise on evocation magic and a selection of erotic poetry. A further search discovered a false bottom on the drawer, revealing a precious spellbook.
The final door led to an empty room; eventually, the party discovered another secret door leading to an alchemists lab. As they opened the door, the group was greeted by the sight of a ghostly gnome bent over a book. The gnome instructed them to leave his home and returned to his work. Theseus presence in the room seemed to cause the ghost to fly into a rage. He attacked the heroes. The battle was hard-fought, at once point the spirit seemed to enter Theseus and attempted to wrestle for control of the Triton’s body. Eventual the heroes prevailed and destroyed the spectre. In the room, they discovered a book titles Ye Secret of Ye Philosophers stone, another spellbook and a variety of golden objects. Shiloh gathered together a variety of the alchemical supplies.
Returning to the common room the party discovered another secret door, leading to a sea cavern. Stealthily entering the cavern, Shiloh determined could hear distant footsteps and the sound of heavy objects being dragged across the rough stone floor. Signalling for the rest of the group to quietly follow, Shiloh moved around the corner straight into two waiting sentries.
The rough men sprang into action, shouting that they were under attack. They slashed out with their scimitars however Shiloh was able to deftly jump back. Another two men appeared from the back of the cavern, raised bows and fired at an approaching Hekate. The rest of the party waded into the fray. At one point William noticed several burst barrels seemed to be leaking an alcoholic spirit and attempted to set them on fire, however, failed. During the battle, Hekate was knocked unconsious, and Theseus had to revive her. Two of the ruffians fell, and the other two ran deeper into the cavern.