Intermissive Mini-Adventure: The Fiddler’s Lament
(31 July 2015)
Xiuj-Hak-Leyng, having medicated himself, was feeling much better and was able to join the party. Cain, on the other hand had taken ill and remained at the Lorrimor home.
The General Store
Arising early, the party (minus Cain Coh) went to the general store to purchase some items more appropriate to fight the undead. Fiddle music, apparently coming from north, in the direction of the graveyard, filled the air. Upon arriving at the store, the party met the previous owners, the current owner’s parents, as zombies attacking the family. The zombies were quickly dispatched, and the family ran upstairs. The family’s screams led the party to an upstairs bedroom, where they destroyed a ghost in the closet with holy water.
The party, while tempted, turned down an offer to guard the money lender’s building.
Keep Your Hands off the Children
Outside, zombies were chasing citizens around town. A group of children were being threatened by 4 ghostly disembodied claws, protected only by Old River, the town’s beloved stray dog. Maligar and Cad were attacked, but the party fought off the claws and saved the children.
The Bridge Crossing
At the bridge, the group met a group of undead, one skeleton riding a skeleton horse and two on foot, threatening a boy posting notes on the posting pole on the outskirts of town. Taking considerable damage, the party destroyed the undead threat. Brother Nesphebius also lost a finger and thumb during the fight. The boy turned out to be the son of an influential city councilman.
After the battle, an acolyte of Pharasma approached the party, begging them for help saving Councilman Muricar. Trying to catch his breath, the young priest said that the Temple of Pharasma had been overrun by zombies and that one of the priests—Jason—had been killed. He went looking for the other priests who were out fighting the undead in order to bring them back to the Councilman’s home, intending to then proceed to the cemetery.
As the party approached the home of Councilman Gharen Muricar, he ran from the home and hid unsuccessfully behind a large planter on the porch. Chasing him was an ectoplasmic creature, which the councilman later identified as his grandfather, an abusive drunkard whom the councilman’s father had murdered in the woods. The party defeated the creature, saving the councilman. At his request, they agreed to keep his secret.
At the cemetery gate, a ghoul wolf stood guard, a piece of a priest’s garments in his bloody mouth. With some difficulty, the group dispatched the beast. Brother Rufio was in the bushes, still alive but paralyzed. After he recovered, Rufio gave Brother Nepshebius a backpack full of scrolls and left again to look for the other priests.
The source of the music was found in the middle of the cemetery. An elf maiden danced about, playing a fiddle, known as the Rebec Malevolenti. Eight skeletons protected her, and as she played, more crawled up from beneath the earth. With the late arrival of Brother Rufio, the party destroyed those and four more skeletons. With several attacks on the fiddle itself, the instrument fell to the ground, broken in two. The undead fell back into a state of eternal repose, and the elf maiden, Alhindriosa ceased her dancing and was again reduced to her melancholy state, her condition while she was interred at Caliphas prison. The skeletons were revealed to be her adopted kin, a band of gypsies that were massacred eighty-five years prior.
Unfortunately, Cad Rassendyll was killed in the final battle. After performing an athletic maneuver in order to catch the fiddler, he was mortally wounded. A bomb thrown by Xiuj-Hak-Leyng missed its mark, killing a skeleton and severely damaging two others. The splash also hit the dying Cad, finishing him off.
The city of Ravengro celebrated the end of the undead threat, re-buried their dead, and welcomed the remaining party members as heroes.