The Company of Odd Fellows
The following morning the party woke up, packed up their belongings and headed down the trap door. The passageway eventually widened out to a larger hallway that descended down a staircase before turning south into what looked like a dead end. The dead end turned out to be a cleverly hidden door that opened inward, which suggested it was intended for quick egress to this hallway from the other side.
Andy listened at the door but didn’t hear anything but decided to open the door as quietly as possible. The door was was well balanced and opened inward without making any noise. The hallway on the other side was well lit and a quick glance showed that door was at the intersection where a hall going south met a hall going East-West. Andy could see 3 armed men about 30’ down the south passageway and another 2 men about 20’ to the west where it ended. All of them looked to peering through arrow slits in the walls. A discussion in the hidden room formulated a risky plan. Use an illusion spell from Bark’s wand to hide them from the soldiers in the south hallway. then sneak out the door and take down the two guards in the south, quietly if possible. That plan fell apart when the first guard heard Andy’s approaching footsteps and turned towards them. Domino used his mace to hit them with Hold Person and they both fell to the ground. The party quickly and quietly bound them.
With the illusion spell still hiding them from the guards to the south they decided to try the same plan of attack, Andy getting in close, Needles with a arrow notched and Domino hitting them with another hold person. Andy was able to get in close but her skills weren’t needed as all three of the guards fell over stiffly as the spell hit them. Quickly and quietly the dragged them to the hidden room and bound them as well. Andy followed the hallway down to where it turned east. She saw two more guards down at the end where the hallway turned south again as well as some stairs heading down to the south. With not knowing what was down the hall or stairs, they knew they risked detection but with only two guards they were hoping to take them down quickly. Only one went down from the spell but Andy was right behind the other, silencing him quickly.
Stationing Kain and Clarabelle at the stairs the other four members worked their way down the hallway as it went south. Andy snuck down to the end and saw that there were two more guards but that this was the end of the hallway. She snuck up on the nearest guard and backstabbed him and although the wound went deep, the guard turned around surprised. Needles who was further down the hallway let an arrow fly at the other guard, killing him instantly. The stabbed guard pulled out a whistle and let lose a short burst before Andy stabbed him again, finishing him off. Not sure what the whistle entailed, Needles and Andy moved back to join the rest of the party near the stairs. Kain and Clarabelle moved to cover the hallway north and were surprised when they saw a wall open and a man in robes step out from it. He was looking the other direction as he came out and didn’t see Kain and Clarabelle standing there. Clarabelle yelled out ‘Caster!’ and loosed her Firebolt at the surprised mage. Kain ran at him with his Katana held high, his weapon cutting deeply into the mage as an arrow released by Andy struck his as well. The mage was able to dodge the second set of attacks before casting ice storm, pummelling Kain and the now melee ranged Clarabelle with ice pellets. This allowed him to pop open the secret door and slip inside. Right after two more guards rounded the corner of the stairs coming up. Bark, Needles and Domino stayed back to take on the two guards while Clara, Andy and Kain pursued the wizard. It took them a few seconds but they found the opening to the secret door and bounded in, but by then the wizard was gone through what looked to be another secret door. Meanwhile the other 3 quickly took care of the guards and when it looked like the threat from that direction had passed, moved to join the others. Andy found the secret door and Clarabelle and Kain, piled in to find the room empty, but the trail of blood leading to a door to the north. By the time they got to the hallway on the other side, the wizard had warned the barracks and guards were streaming out into the hallway. Clarabelle case one of her magic missiles at the front lines and Andy released an arrow as a major engagement in the hallway took place.
The party fought half the guards as they came through the door, Bark’s entangle making it impossible for them to move as Kain and Domino cut through their ranks. The other half of the barracks tried to flank the party but were met by resistance from Domino, Needles and Andy while Bark tossed flame bombs at any one in range. However while the party was engaged the wizard alerted the other slavers to their presence and two capable fighters joined the fight from the east while two rogues came in from the east. But the party stood fast and was able to cut them down. As they were breathing a sigh of relief another small cadre of guards came from another area and as the party was mopping them up, they were ambushed by a Lightning Bolt cast by the wizard. With no regard for his own men, it cut the last two of them down and almost took Clarabelle and Bark down as well. But both clung to life and Clarabelle fired off her last magic missile, finishing off the heavily wounded wizard.
Not sure if there were more guards or worse in fortress they quickly used as much of their healing potions and spells to get them up and running, all of them hoping they wouldn’t run into any more. Since they were nearest to the barracks, they searched it first but didn’t find much other than dirty laundry. They backtracked to the room the wizard slipped through and were able to find a not very well hidden concealed door where they came across a large chest full of gems and coins. This wound up being the only treasure they found as they investigated the fortress. But when they discovered the slave pen, they came across 6 men tied to shackles along the wall. When they were freed, one of them introduced himself as Capt. Ibenre, the captain of the ship they found docked earlier. He mentioned that they were tasked by the elven court to investigate the disappearances surrounding this area. When his men docked the ship, they were attacked by orcs and humans and all but him and 5 of his men were killed. He told them the leader’s name was Morgath who ran the group with his mistress Sharana. From what he could gather, Morgath and Sharana were both in the Barony military before being discharged for misconduct. They then put together this crew and got started in the slaving business, although from some of the things Morgath mentioned to him he got the sense that there was something bigger than them involved, possibly even Kar’Tegra involvement.
Most of the men were pretty weak so they brought some food and water in from the barracks to feed the captives. They also found most of their gear in a box in the corner of the pens. They let the men eat and get dressed while they finished searching the fortress. Besides the treasure in the wizards hidden alcove there was nothing to be found. Although they did find that some of the slavers did have some equipment of magical nature which they gathered up.
Captain Ibenre offered to sail them up the coast to the Town of Grey Cliffs, saying it was the least he could do after rescuing him and his crew from either slavery or death. The party was more than willing to take him up on the offer, avoiding the trip back through the Mire Wood and getting a chance to recuperate on the ship.
The Odd Fellows helped get the ship ready to sail, and they set forth the next morning for Grey Cliffs, leaving Frog Island behind.