Desnus 23, 4712
After dealing with the events of the graveyard the party retired to the Green Forest Inn for the night. The next morning, their breakfast was interrupted by the rather boisterous arrival in the common room by Borden Fructose ’carrageenan-palmitate the 3rd. She had travelled to Thorn Keep to meet Thorin and company but had been delayed a day, so she missed the early exploration of the town and the adventure from the night before.
While enjoying a meal, the party brought Borden up to date on the happenings of the previous day and began to review their options on what to accomplish for the current day.
Gronan mentioned wanting to survey the town some more and possibly purchase some supplies, but Thorin and Gorath interjected that Niles and Berienn Fraston’s daughter, Adelind, had already been missing for 8 days and it was important that the party begin the search for her as quickly as possible otherwise they might find her dead body, instead of rescuing her alive.
After some more research as to the lay of the land and the local environs, the party realized that all they had to do to reach Echo Cleft was to follow Echo stream northward out of the town and eventually, they would arrive at the last known location of the girl.
Once deep into the woods, the reason for the name of the wood was impressed upon the group. While following the river made travel easier, the rugged terrain of the wood just beyond the stream’s path impressed upon the party the ease of their current endeavor and both Borden and Little Joe were glad to be traveling along the steam’s path.
Upon reaching the cleft, the party became aware that beyond the opening of the cleft, spider webs had been stretched across the cleft. As the party looked deeper into the cleft, they could see that the webs became thicker.
Fortunately for the party, a few of them noticed what looked like a body wrapped in the webs just beyond the beginning of the cleft. Perhaps they would be able to find the girl and not have to deal with the obvious spider nest.
Borden quickly cast a spell of acid dart into the first set of webbing, doing some minor damage.
Gorath called upon his god, saying a prayer of evil detection. As he moved toward the first set of webs, he soon became aware of two evil auras hidden in the webs ahead. As he was almost to the first area of webbing, he could confirm that the body wrapped up in the second area of webbing appeared to be that of a young girl. Was that movement from the body, could she still be alive or had the movement come from something else?
The spider, who hid in the first web chose to strike at this time and shot a web at Gorath, catching him in its sticky fibers. A few of the party noticed a strand of webbing extending from the fibers holding Gorath back into the web where the spider lurked.
Thorin quickly moved forward past Gorath with the purpose of freeing the girl from the second web. As he moved alongside the stream, his feet became stuck in an area of the ground. The spiders had laid a trap of their web along the edge of the stream bed and Thorin had managed to become stuck!
At this point, the party managed to spot the first spider in its web. It was a Moon Spider, which is more intelligent than a normal large spider.
Little Joe readied his sling, saying a poem, and let fly with a sling bullet. The first to strike the spider doing some damage.
Borden switched to her bonded Gnomish Hook Hammer, realizing it will be more effective against the spider than her spell. Throwing her Hammer, she struck the spider, damaging it some more, the Hammer then magically returned to her hand.
Gorath groaned straining against the sticky fibers of the web entangling him and with a surge of strength, manages to break free of them.
Gronan readied his crossbow, but his quick action caused his shot to go wide, the bolt flying further down the cleft, the echoes of it striking a stone, its only effect.
The Moon Spider hidden in the second web chose this moment to rush out across the stream and attack the stuck Thorin. Unfortunately in its excitement at such a tasty looking meal, it’s fangs glanced off Thorin’s breast plate.
The first Moon Spider rushed out from the web it had been hiding in seeing that it’s prey had broken free from the web. It’s fangs also glanced off Gorath’s breast plate.
Thorin, unconcerned by the dog sized Moon Spider in front of him swung his weapon, but it glanced off the chitinous hide of the spider. Perhaps the spiders were a little more deadly than he had anticipated.
After seeing the size of both spiders and realizing his sling would not be as effective as his companion’s weapons, Little Joe began to chant a bardic anthem of Courage to enhance his fellow adventurer’s abilities.
Borden decided to cast a spell of magic missile now that Gorath was in hand to hand combat with one of the spiders as the missile would unerringly strike the spider where as her Hammer might hit Gorath due to the maneuvers of the combatants.
Gorath, with a mighty swing of his weapon, stuck the spider, finishing it off.
Gronan shot his crossbow at the spider currently battling Thorin, but due to the maneuvering of the two opponents locked in battle, his bolt again missed. Its echo from where it struck a rock further down the cleft returning seconds later.
The Moon Spider on Thorin was doing much better than its recently departed companion and sunk it’s fangs deep into his arm. Thorin could feel the spider’s poison begin to effect him. These spiders were much more dangerous than he had originally thought.
Thorin managed to hit the Moon Spider, partially damaging it.
Little Joe continued to chant his bardic charm!
Borden cast another Magic Missile spell, further damaging the remaining Moon Spider.
Gorath having finished the Moon Spider on himself, moved forward directly behind Thorin and using his Dwarven Dorn Dergar, hit the Moon Spider with a killing blow.
Thorin manages to overcome the Moon Spider poison and while weakened from the bite, will eventually recover.
The party frees Adelind from her spider cocoon and check her out. She is still alive, but very weak from the spider poison. The party confirms that she will also eventually recover and search the immediate area for any other victims of the spiders. They manage to find some coin and gems but not much else, while keeping a wary eye for other spiders.
Carrying Adelind the return to town with their limited spoils, knowing that while they have free her, the Moon Spider colony still threatens Echo Cleft. Will they return in the future to deal with the rest of the pests?
While travelling back to town Borden casts a ghost sound spell on Gronan, causing him to hear the sounds of spiders up in the trees. He quickly unsheathes his weapon and shouts a warning to the party which elicits a torrent of giggle from Borden.
Gronan begins to wonder to himself if Borden will be an asset to the party or if her pranks will outweigh her usefulness.
Once arriving in town they visit Brother Eldrast at the Shrine of Battle to heal the girl and get healing for Thorin. With Adelind healed, they escort her back to her father’s house, with Gorath and Thorin travelling ahead with her while the other members of the party discuss ways to ransom her back to her family.
Niles gives the party 100 gold for the return of his daughter, but Gorath and Thorin give him back their shares, stating that it was their duty to rescue his daughter and they do not need a reward. They state instead perhaps in the future, he might provide them or another wanderer with a meal.
The party then seeks out Jorennon Beringer the merchant whose caravan was attacked by the undead a few days earlier and returned his cargo. They were sorry to inform him that his horse had been killed by the undead and even revealed some of the gory details of its remains to him. He was very happy to get his cargo back and gave the party 500 gold for their help.
Gorath and Thorin sought out the temple to pray and commune with their god while Borden, Gronan and Little Joe decided to continue exploring the town.
Gronan was looking for something in particular and spotted the symbol on the Thornkeep Mercantile shop. Gronan spoke with the proprietor, Yunar Barask, a gray hair man with a large bristly mustache. Gronan introduces himself and pays the proper respect, letting Barask know that he is in town and what he needs to do, be aware of when following his profession.
Gronan sells whatever items the party has collected to Barask and also sells the gems for a fair price. Borden, Gronan and Little Joe discuss how to divide up the proceeds and come to an agreement.
Gronan then goes to find Gorath and Thorin. While speaking with Gorath to give him and Thorin their shares, Gorath notices Gronan is being somewhat untruthful about how the spoils were split and Gorath guilts Gronan into give him 50 extra gold, instead of what was agreed up by the three party members.
What this means concerning future party activities will remain to be seen.
Meanwhile Borden and Little Joe went looking for the wizards’ guild. Borden finds said guild in the Goldenfire Tower, the home of Iliara Starcloak. Borden talks with Timbor, Iliara’s apprentice and purchases the spell Burning Hands from him.