Day 4, 26 days remaining
We checked on Grumblejack and of course he was passed out but still alive. We decided to leave him and move forward to the south east edge of town. We went together into the forest only about thirty yards so we could be unseen. Kallista attempted to go deeper into the forest while Maldrake and Stryder formulated a plan. We didn't see her again for almost an hour. Maldrake commanded his familiar to fly above the tree line and see what he could see. The tree line at the highest was only about fifty feet. The familiar quickly reported that there was a clearing but it was around two-hundred yards away or so.
Stryder advised us that he would climb to the top and so he did. It was child's play due to his catfolk heritage. At the top he said that he could see Balentyne across the bay. He could see no clearing. He attempted to jump to the next tree and succeeded easily. He tried again and failed and fell fifty feet below and almost broke both his legs if not for landing and rolling just right. We shook our heads and told the cat man that at his rate it would take hours. Maldrake sent his familiar up with a long silk rope and with each others guidance they navigated their way through the forest. It took a couple tries to get off because we started to move to fast and the rope would get tangled and yanked out of his familiars mouth.
|Fiftieth time is a charm?|
We proceeded slowly and carefully through the forest and just over twenty-five minutes later we arrives at a clearing in the woods. We saw a wooded cottage with only a single wooden door. We could see the start of a path back out of clearing and we were only about twenty yards off the path. Before we went in, Malrake ordered his familiar to find Kallista in town and help her guide her way here as well and so it was done. After nearly an hour total spent on getting everyone to this place it was time to investigate.
9:00 A.M. - Day 115, Rova 15, 3042 AP (After Peace)
|Strange place for a cottage.|
After about ten minutes eyeing over the place Kallista was getting very impatient. She rushed out the door only to fall flat on her rear and as she did, a small plume of dust arose from the opposite side of the front door she was about to exit and she notices pattering foot prints scurrying up more dust. She quickly alerted the party but before they could get any real track on what was going on she said it was gone.
"There is something invisible out there." she said as she pointed in a non direct location. Stixx stayed indoors while Urgoen helped move some of the broken pieces to get a better look at the floors and walls. While outside trying to figure out what we just encountered a voice broke the confusion.
"I am Drae. I followed you here. I over heard while you just entering the forest that you were looking for this place and though I am a bit of a local around these parts I've never seen any of you and I have to wonder what a group like this would be out in the middle of the day."
We did not know what to make of this strange dark skinned elf. He said that he knows that we followed Bellam into the tunnel and after he heard a couple rumors himself a week ago, he too said this would be a perfect opportunity for him to seek his revenge on Balentyne. It is the keepers of that place that eradicated his family years ago. We didn't question his motives and Maldrake's familiar detected no good on this elf and Kallista's Blackblade was remaining docile. Drae said that he heard the rumors about Bellam needing a stash of fine wine and a tunnel that may have been sealed years ago that lead to Balentyne. So we agreed to move along with him and figure out if he was legitimate later.
9:30 A.M. - Day 115, Rova 15, 3042 AP (After Peace)
Drae and Stixx went searching and found a small trap door in the corner. It was locked but only in the most basic form. Maldrake leaned over and didn't seem to concerned with the possibility of traps and slide the tiny bolt lock to the side and the door dropped open. There was a faint light coming from the right side of the room, mostly likely that of a candelabra as it was not a very bright light. Maldrake went down first and saw nothing of any danger.
|What in the hell is lab doing here?|
We all came down one by one and all agreed that we had nothing to fear from the golem and even Stixx chimed in with a comment about the quality, "Dat be the shittiest creation I could see."
Stryder seemed nervous. He stayed behind all of us and beads of sweat seemed to pour from his eye brows and dripping down over his fur. We thought nothing of it, as he is always quite and nervous most of the time. Kallista moved in to check out this creation and with out warning a giant fist swung and stuck her right in the face and she reeled back in pain. We all quickly looked at Stryder who in a faint voice murmured, "I don't think it's bindings are in tact."
|The flesh golem rises.|
Maldrake closed in to strike the golem and missed, but Kallista, Drae, and Stixx most certainly didn't miss and the creature howled in anger. When it could respond again, it stood up and those close enough got a few cheap shots in. It however was not enough for the beast to protect whatever its master intended for and died in a burning pile of melted flesh, rivets, and bolts.
There wasn't much to take from that place except some ointments and bindings. Stixx found a masterwork alchemist lab. Maldrake tore down all the surrounding permanent alchemist labs and could not find any secret doors or further traps. While this was concerning we had no idea what was in store for us later in the day. We gathered our composure and head back the way we came, leaving no care for the way we left this strange building. Maybe our owner would get the hint that we weren't impressed.