Adventure 31: Foul Science (Part 1)

Having reached Grakharan’s camp, our heroes proceed to introduce themselves. Grakharan enlists the heroes to aid in his efforts, sending Nacu and Utog to help gather the ingredients he needs for his cures. Meanwhile, Shir attempts to visit the Manor of the house of Sun, but is denied entry as he had not filed the proper requests. Shir also asks Aelessa to track the source of the plague, despite her protestations about not being able to track disease. At this point she suspects Shir does not understand what tracking actually is.

Hiring a professional bureaucrat, Shir manages to secure an audience under a false name, as the family of Sun denied requests submitted under Shir, descendant of Ran. He also learns that the Vel village, former property of Ran, was now held in trust by Kur-Dan until such time as he is deemed fit to inherit (Kur-Dan being his legal guardian at one time).

Shir meets with the current leader of the house of Sun and makes a plea for aid against the Nezurans, after which he is reminded that the house of Sun does not have direct power in these matters. Shir counters saying that if they end the plague, he expects the support of the house of Sun when he petitions to speak before the Council of Maigs.

While gathering herbs, Nacu and Utog encounter a river annui named Ithaela-la-lothlee. She pleads with them to seek out a foul corruption to the north, a corruption that defiles her river.

When the group meets up back at Grakharan’s camp, screaming and people fleeing draws them to the north side of camp where they encounter worm-like aberrations. The heroes engage the disgusting creatures who burst into swarms of maggot-like larva when slain. Rasha and Nacu are forced to burn the swarms down by using area-of-effect attacks on their allies, a better alternative than watching them be devoured by a flood of gnashing teeth.

When the battle is concluded, Grakharan exposes one of the creatures to his cure and says that the creatures appear vulnerable to it. With that, the heroes decide to travel north to find the source, asking Aelessa to track the creatures back to their lair.

The trail eventually leads to the village of Lian, ending near the outskirts of town. After asking around, the heroes learn that the villagers are suspicious of some relatively newcomers to the villager who have lost no one to the plague. Shir scouts the farm of the Wu family, finding what appears to be a normal farm. He hides in bushes near the house while the other heroes speak to the farmer. When the heroes mention their names, Shir notices a group of Sidd wielding shadowy knives exiting the farmhouse and sneaking up behind the heroes.

A battle ensues with Kur-Dan being rightfully cautious of the assassins. For the most part, the heroes defenses are too strong for the daggers, but the assassins show a marked ability to find weak points and pierce their armor. When the first of the assassins falls, their veil drops to reveal that the farmers are actually Black Vel. The heroes slowly defeat the assassins until only one remains. That last survivor dashes into the house with the heroes in hot pursuit.



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