Bloodwater

Stormcrow Tor I

Hollis and Glimmer are able to piece together a little of the history based on the letter you found.

Illugi Swordbreaker, the Emerald Warlock, and Agera of the Shadow Face led a mercenary group called Stormcrow Company. Each had a storied adventuring background before they joined their strengths, but those stories are as nothing compared to the tales of the exploits of Stormcrow Company. The mercenaries made their base in old tunnels they
found beneath a rocky tor in the wilderness. Though Stormcrow Company was credited with cleaning the goblin tribes out of nearby hills and killing the lich who threatened the valley from its dark tower, the adventurers also accepted contracts to assassinate nobles in a neighboring city-state, kidnapped an eladrin princess in return for a ransom of questionable relics, and even burned down an entire village on a lark while passing through. In the end, they were feared more than revered.

Upon returning to town you start asking around about the whereabouts of Artem and you find that several people have seen him hurrying through the streets, bumping into people in a rush to get somewhere. You follow the stories easily and arrive at your inn. It is on fire. You find Terroth standing outside watching the blaze as the town watch is fighting the fire with many of the patrons of the tavern.

Glimmer single handedly puts out the fire (with the help of hollis in the shadows) and Terroth tells you what has happened. A person matching the description of Artem came franticly into the tavern and started a heated discussion with someone sitting at the bar. A fight broke out and a lantern was knocked over. The last thing he remembers seeing is the two men still fighting as he ran out. This story is confirmed by the other patrons. You investigate the scene and discover only one corpse, charred beyond recognition with no distinguishing marks. You do notice however that the body is much more burned then you would expect based on the fire you saw.

Finding no further information on Artem, the party travels south as indicated by the letter after Rumer arranges for a message to be sent to the town government alerting them to the location of the mountain blood.

You discovered the tor in the desert just as you expected and make your way inside.

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Clearing the mine

You followed Artem to the mine and discovered the entrance was guarded by two orcs riding dire boars. Combat was swift and you were able to surround the guards and prevent their escaping or raising the alarm. the entrance to the mine was hidden from plain sight by a large boulder. Once you walked around the boulder however, you discovered a long tunnel burrowing into the mountain with a slight descent. The tunnel is straight and from within you could see light from both ends. The far end of the tunnel opened up on a torchlit mining operation where a large number of goblins are working to remove the stone from the walls.
As you plan your next move a commotion arose from the far corner of the mine, drawing all of the miners to investigate and creating an opportunity for Artem and Content Not Found: tark to investigate, there movements hidden from view by the large pile of rubble in the center of the room.
The party moves forward and discovers that the miners have discovered a passage at the back of the mine. Taking hold of the opportunity you attack and decimate the mining operation.

You pushed into the hidden chamber that the miners discovered and conquered the Crystal spider and won his treasure hoard. However your trust in Artem was misplaced (or more likely your suspicions were justified) As Artem vanished at the end of the battle with a piece of the treasure and you suspect that he had an ulterior motive in leading you into the mines. While going through the Treasure of the Spider you notice that there is a symbol under the treasure carved into the top of the platform on which the treasure was resting. It is a picture of a ravin on a backdrop of storm clouds and lightning.

Upon clearing all of the treasure from the platform you hear a soft click and the raven Emblem lifts slightly from the background as if hinged. It reveals a small compartment containing a scrap of old, crumbling parchment.

“You have found my heart, keep it safe. Do not allow it to fall into the hands of the Swordbreaker. Twas jealousy that drove him to madness. I have returned to the Tor to claim my stake in the wealth of treasure accumulated over the years before I leave the company for good. If you are reading this then you must assume The Swordbreaker has slain me. My treasure in yours, travel due south to the desert with vengeance in your heart and claim your reward.”

You go through the treasure another time but find nothing that resembles a heart.

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The tavern incident

You return to town after burying your mountain blood where you plan to support Teroth when he goes to claim payment for the job. Your plan is foiled however when the lookout position you chose to watch the front door of the tavern was occupied by the same bandits that ambushed you at the great oak. After defending yourselves you discover a medallion on one of them that identifies them as the Kings guard.
Worried that you may well now be wanted men you decide to set forth to attempt to right a wrong and investigate an illegal mining operation you suspect may be the source of the mountain blood you have been smuggling. Aiding you in this task is a human rogue named Artem. He claims that the mine is likely an illegal ruby mining operation but he can show you where it is so for now you allow him to travel with you.

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The old mill

You set up an ambush at the old mill, the location where you are to make the drop. While lying in wait in the woods, six orcs approach and enter the mill. Upon exiting, much to your dismay, the orcs head south and away from the ambush at which point you break cover and attack. You manage to stop 4 of them but the two carrying all of the mountain blood manage to escape. A wild chase ensues and you catch up to and relieve the orcs of there load as well as their lives. They almost made it where they were going however as a pair of Ogres attacks you from the path up the mountain where you dispatched the final orc. Outmatched and battle weary you chose to flee and fight another day.

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The 3rd Drop

You had a conversation with Teroth and discover the substance you are transporting is Mountain Blood a valuable substance with magical properties. Much to his distress, Teroth also admits that you are making deliveries for the orcs.

In the night, your party is set upon by bandits dressed in grey trousers and a grey tunic with black armor and a red sash belt. After dispatching these bands with no problem and after calming Teroth down you hatched a plan to move forward…

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Intro
Though the protection service is booming in Alamar, business is not as great for Teroth as he hoped before you arrived. His good reputation in the South has not spread into the upper reaches and as newcomers to Alamar you have yet to earn the prestige to work on some of the more high paying protection details and are relegated to work for some of the city’s less well off. Teroth has arranged for you to escort the poorer traders from Alamar to the guard post at the great gates and vise versa. From the gates down the mountain, attacks are still possible but visibility increases to a few miles in all directions and the poorer traders aren’t wealthy enough (or are too cheep) to afford an escort all the way down the mountain. The past two weeks have been different however. Teroth has had you on a special. The five of you would travel up the north road and then turn off onto the woods. You follow one of the many footpaths that crisscross High Ridge to a clearing in the woods and the home of a giant old oak tree. There is hollow at the base of the tree from which you would find ten 10lb bags that you would load into your cart. You then return the way you came making camp in the woods at nightfall. The next morning, following the mountain westward you would escort your load to an old mill on the river upstream of town and leave the bags under some loose floor boards. From there you return to Alamar, job done. Teroth has not shared the ‘why’ of these drops with you but he has paid you each an extra 50gp per drop so you don’t ask too many questions. The other odd aspect of these deliveries is Teroth, the usually timid, has accompanied you and even assisted with the lifting and carrying. This morning however you left later than usual and arrived at the old oak at dusk. You loaded up the bags as usual then made camp under the giant tree. After dinner Teroth has started into the wine… “Only one more of these trips boys and then the bonus come in and we’ll all have a little extra spending money. How you thinking of spending it?”
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