Train Bridge at Swarthmore College crossing Crum Creek

Wrath of the Lich Witch Part 1

Side Quest

Everyone was absent, so I decided to run a one-off I've been cooking in my head. It went better than expected.

Players

The Adventure Begins...

At the Rusty Dragon

The party relaxed after their long trip back from their previous adventure. Killing and pillaging is hard work after all. Aminko, the owner of the Rusty Dragon, walked over and handed a package to Belanthas, the party Cleric. "This showed up for you a while ago. No idea who it's from. Just left on my door step. Weird, they knew you'd be here." Just as confused as Aminko as to why he would have a package here, he ripped open the box to reveal an ornate and intricate flask. The bottle was made out of a clear glass and adorned with gold and gems. The flask ebbed and flowed with magical energy as the wispy content churned inside the bottle.

Orana, the wise old witch, was overcome with curiosity and tore the bottle from Belanthas's hands, popped the cork from the bottle and lifted it to her nose. The purple smoke rose out of the bottle and into Orana's lungs. Her eyes rolled back into her head and she hit the ground with a thump. The bottle, now empty of the gaseous fluid, rolled onto the floor and under a table. Kristof, knowing this was going to be trouble, grabbed the now passed out witch and dragged her upstairs. He tied Orana to the bed to ensure she wouldn't do any wandering. The party gathered their things and headed off to the chapel knowing Father Chuckles would have an idea. Belanthas decided he was going to sit this adventure out and nurse his wounds from the previous few days.

Out and About in Sandpoint

Upon their arrival, Father Chuckles was not happy to see this select group of men in his Chapel. The party held up the vial for the Father to see and asked what it was. The Father studied the bottle for a moment, his face becoming livid.

"Leave at once!" yelled the Father. "Take that contraption away from my church!"

The party continued to throw questions at the Father as he began pushing them out the door.

"It's a Lich's phylactery and I will not be having you bunch causing any more trouble. Out! Out!"

The Father got quiet as the party headed towards the door, distraught and defeated.

"Wait! I'll help. What business do you have with the device and why did you bring it here?"

Arron stepped forward. "Our 'Friend' decided to use it as an inhalant. She's currently passed out and tied to a bed. We just want to make sure nothing is seriously wrong with Orana."

"Come, let me take a look," sighed the tired old monk.

Back at the Rusty Dragon

"Ok, guys. I've talked to you about this," Aminko said blocking the party from climbing the steps to their personal rooms. "I don't want live animals in the rooms. You've got to pen them up outside. They're up there making a racket and my usuals are complaining."

Kristof quickly blurted an apology and sprinted past Aminko with the rest of the party. Behind the door the party was greeted by their worst fears. The room had been trashed. The bed was broken in half and discarded by the door and the window was wide open. The party didn't see any signs of the monster they accidentally helped create.

"Well then. You'd best be off to find her." quirked the Father.

"Would you assist us on this wild goose chase? I'm sure you are quite skilled at Lich tracking," Kristof asked. The old man shook his head.

"I'm no fighter. In my youth I would gladly have joined you. I will return to my study and read up on magic that may help. If you are able to trap it, find me and I will do what I can to save your friend."

He headed down the stairs and out of sight as fast as his frail legs could take him. The party, having no idea where to start, decided to check out the abandoned glass works as it would be a perfect place to hide for the Lich.

With the Heroes of Sandpoint

The party broke into the glassworks and headed down to the basement. They were immediately met with an impassible wall built by the Paladins who had chased them away not a few weeks prior. Frustrated and of ideas they began walking back to the Rusty Dragon. In the distance, over at the trading district, they heard screaming and saw clouds of smoke billowing into the sky. "Found her," sighed Kristof. Already assuming the worst they walked to the market district ready to play damage control. The crowd was dense with onlookers wondering what all the commotion was about. The party pushed themselves to the front of the crowd and found a smashed fine china cart and hysterical salesmen holding the fractured pieces.

"She came out of no where!" he cried. "I couldn't stop her. My entire life's work smashed to pieces before my eyes!"

"Did you see where she went, we're trying to find her?" asked Arron. The salesman was too hysterical to respond.

"Wait!" cried someone in the crowd, "it's the heroes of Sandpoint."

"It is them! You saved us from the goblins!" cried another. The crowd quickly lost interest in the flaming china cart and began circling the party chanting "Heroes of Sandpoint". The party was lifted into the air and paraded around. "Heroes of Sandpoint," everyone chanted in unison. The party desperately tried to get as much useful information out of the crowd as they could, despite the fact nothing could be heard over the cheering and chanting. After a few minutes they were put back on the ground and the chanting changed to "Kill the monster!"

Kristof lost his patience and yelled as loud as he could, "We will kill the monster, but we need to know where it is headed." Someone in the crowd pointed over the town's walls to the Tick Forest in the Hinterlands.

"It headed off in that direction, towards the old forest." The crowd began moving towards the front pushing the party as it went. The heroes mounted their horses and ponies and rode off into the hills anxious for the battle that was soon to come. The chanting could still be heard as the town disappeared from view.

Within the Tickwood Forest

The party rode through the hillside and into the sparse outer forest. The dense forest was fresh with new growth but was surprisingly quiet.

"This doesn't seem right, everyone hold up," Arron said stopping the party. He rode on further and scouted the area looking for goblins which were common in the area. Fifty or so feet directly ahead of the party they saw a cart and horse pulled off to the side of the road. Little green creatures scurried around it. They were throwing things in the air and trying to be as loud as possible. It seemed that the caravan was being robbed by goblins. There was a tallish figure being held at sword point towards the back of the cart. Arron quickly rode back and reported what he saw. A plan of attack was put together and the party began spreading out. Everyone slowly approach the goblins hoping to catch a straggler by surprise and surround it. Bows at the ready, the three men fired at the closest goblins hoping for quick kills. Arron threw a smoke bomb towards the cart. Arron, with his personal hatred of the little green monsters, ran towards the cart and quickly dispatched three goblins. A few minutes later most of the goblins had been dealt with and the rest were retreating into the forest.

The party approached the caravan and were met by an elvish woman who introduced herself as Thalijen. Off by the corner of the wagon the two goblins who had had her by sword point were notably dead and bloody. She jumped into the back of the wagon and attempted to wake up her robed friend. "He was knocked out when the goblins ambushed us," she said. "He woke up in a haze, mumbling something about witches and demons. Well once again I am Thalijen and this is my friend Thyme. We are adventurers out in search for a Lich that recently flew this way. Guessing by your dress you are also on a similar quest." The party nodded in unison. "Well then it would only make sense to team up and deal with this Lich together," she said rather enthusiastically considering her recent encounter with goblins.

And with that the newly formed party was off.

To be continued in Part 2.