Camp Draedus, Again
The PCs, with Zorla Yeg joining them, leave the Gnomish Research Facility with new weapons, armor, and allies, and retrace their steps in a full day long march back to Camp Draedus on the other side of the Spires.
The Camp looks deserted when they first begin their approach to it as there are no more tents set up anywhere. The people who have stayed in the Camp are all residing within the longhouses. As the PCs approach a couple of gray cloaks run out to greet them, and explain that in the aftermath of the void worm attack most of the hunters decided that it was time to call it a season and return to the civilized lands for winter.
The PCs set up their own camp again just on the outskirts of Camp Draedus and decide that as they head east to search for Norkeris’ body parts that they will try to finish off the tasks originally given to them by Tenzikil, which remain as the Goblins and the Giants. They decide to start with the Giants.
That evening in and around Camp Draedus the PCs begin to investigate the Camp’s knowledge of the giants, and they learn again that there are two different clans of giants, those who reside in the hills north east of the Camp and the Cloud Giants that reside in a flying city above the spires that is run by something else and considered very dangerous.
After looking at the notes from their meeting with Tenzikil the PCs decide that what Tenzikil want’s to know about is the Giants in the hills. With some further investigation they learn that Huntmaster Bliane has ordered the gray cloaks to bring tribute to the Hill Giants on a regular basis and the gray cloaks give the PCs directions to the Valley about a day and a half away.
The PCs head out the next day for the Valley of Tribute. There is no road or trail that heads that way and instead the PCs are forced to trail blaze, using their new Inevitable Eye Arbiter allies gained from the Brand they got from Norkeris they find and are able to plot a path, though it is slow going.
They set up a watch rotation of 4 watches a night and one PC watching with the two Eye Arbiters and the Clockwork Servant standing watch all night as well as Tinorian’s wolf and Zykir’s guard dog.
There is fog their first night out and during the second watch Ironheart hears something out in the fog and sends the Eye Arbiter to investigate, when it doesn’t come back he rushes to wake up Mace and then the others.
As soon as the dwarf turns to alert his allies, goblins begin to assault the Camp with arrows and worgs. Tixe puts up a Windwall to surround the camp and protect against arrows. This angers the Goblins and one of the shamans casts a lightning bolt spell at the gnome completely incapacitating her and knocking her out.
With the Wind Wall up the goblins drop their bows and rush into the camp. Ironheart, Mace, Zykir, Tinorian, Zorla Yeg, and Cifli engage the goblins in the middle of the camp. Evayne however waking up just as the fighting began and trying to put on her armor quickly in her tent is suddenly assaulted by two goblins who come into her tent after her. She tries to fight them off but isn’t able to land any successful strikes and is eventually saved by Mace as he comes past her tent and kills both goblins in one strike.
Evayne calls out that they need a prisoner and Ironheart rushes at one of the few remaining goblins to try to capture it. Using the broadside of his axe he injures the goblin and as it tries to crawl away he misses striking it twice. Mace joins him and also isn’t able to strike the crippled crawling goblin. Eventually Evayne, finally making to the rest of them, is able to stand atop the goblin and prevent it from getting away.
The Goblin Prisoner
With a single goblin prisoner, the PCs decide to conduct an investigation to learn what they need to about the Goblins for Tenzikil. They question the goblin for some time that evening and learn many things, but most importantly they learn that the entire clan is pushing for the town of Acat to the east of here and that the two Marrisouf who successfully stole the Key to the Door of Four from the Gnomes are with the clan.
The goblin tells them that they are honor bound to serve the Marrisouf and that the Marrisouf are pushing to reach their clan with the key that they stole. They also learn that they Goblins fought with a group of hill giants a day or so ago, not far to the north of here and that the Goblins lost. What the clan was after this goblin didn’t know but he knew that the Goblin clan would be returning for it later.
The PC’s let the goblin go as promised, though Tinorian fires a single arrow when no one else is looking to kill the goblin before it can get too far away.
They decide to write out a message of warning for Acat and give it to one of their Eye Arbiters to take to the town to warn them. It will take them three days to reach Acat but the Eye could get there in just about 18 hours.
The PCs then hunker down to get what rest they can before daybreak where they will push as hard as they can without tiring themselves out for Acat to help with whatever defense they can.