Borders of the Imperium

Session 2

On the hunt

The province of Isaristan in on edge, and even behind the fifty foot high walls of the capital there is unease. The streets are awash with the pelts of hyenas and jackals, but traders are still nervous and do not leave without heavy escorts. 

The adventurers of the Wayward Chimera are again sought out by the mayor, but this time to summon them to the Governess herself. She muses how such a crowded space as the Wayward Chimera could accommodate a secret room upstairs, unless of course it had appropriated space from the adjoining smithy which has been abandoned for several years. And, of course, this would mean that the landlords of the Wayward Chimera had been squatting on abandoned land for several years without paying taxes. However, an agreement is possible. From her balcony overseeing the city and beyond, she tells the party that the wine rich town of Nariswar been attacked. Thanks to the vital information on the gnoll threat, the town had begun raising a militia and constructed signal towers to call for aid. Ill trained as they were, the militia fought with everything they had to protect their homes and families. Fighting desperately, they held by a thread just long enough for cavalry to arrive and drive off the gnolls. In the scrum a gnoll leader was identified before fleeing into the dense brush. If the party tracks down and kills the packlord the governess agrees to forgive the party the taxes and squatting charges that are outstanding and will even throw in the deed to the abandoned smithy.  

After securing some supplies the party sets out to Nariswar. There, every one with at least one functioning hand is hard at work building a palisade around the town. The party meets with Lata, the closest thing to an official the town has. She tells them that many are dead, and some may not survive the night. Seeing this suffering and death Ulfgar, the parties cleric, gathers the wounded around him and kneels in prayer. Wounds close, broken bones are set. After their darkest hour, the gods have delivered them grace.

The next morning the party sets out to track the packlord. By mid morning the party comes across another pursuing the gnolls: he is a shaman named Yetu, and he informs the party that their is a yet greater threat. Among the gnolls their is only one who can create more of their kind. Any scavenger that eats from his kills is cursed to become a gnoll. He is the Fang of Yeenoghu, chosen by the demon lord of the gnolls. More importantly, the Fang is alone. For now.

The party agrees to put aside their search for the packlord with Yetu as their guide. Just then there is a crash and a horse comes flying into the brush beside them, thrown clean through the air by some monstrous force. Parsevel the ranger slips into the brush to disclose the nature of this threat. On the road a wagon has been tuned over. The source is obvious: a towering troll, ugly as it is hungry, munches on the lower half of a humanoid corpse. Soon the parties element of surprise is lost and the battle ensues. Through flames and steel they wear the monster down until it is finally slain by a good old fashioned smack on the head. The monk Nim, now officially a trollslayer, gathers the creatures enormous nose as a trophy.

The party looks through the possessions of the trolls victim and finds it was a wizard, apparently fleeing from some failed experiment of his in the River Delta.

After licking their wounds and pressing on, the party comes across the Fang feasting on a recent kill with small hideous demons joining in the feast. A careful shot from hiding succeeds only in driving the quarry into the bush. Parsevel uses his ranger cunning  to chase through the deep brush while the cleric Ulfgar crashes through the brush just behind him. The monk Nim and the wizard Harry do not fare so well in the unfamiliar bush and soon the party is separated in a long line. Just then the Fang strikes out from the brush at the ranger, who takes a beating while his party catches up. Having no desire to take fight the reuniting party, the Fang again flees into the brush only to be snared by the shaman’s magic. A bolt of killing light from Ulfgar strikes out and stems the tide of gnolls once and for all.

After an extended rest the party presses forward to find the gnoll packlord, who it seems has retreated into a canyon. The canyon culminates in a cave and the party plots their assault but to noisily as arrows interrupt their committee. The packlord emerges to confront the party and his followers join the fray, their ferocity peaked by their leader’s influence. Nunchucks, fire and steel coordinated finally end the threat of the gnolls and no survivors are permitted to escape.

Yetu makes a request that the party use their influence to end the bounty on hyenas and jackals before the ecosystem is altered to the ruin of all, then takes his leave. The party returns to Isari with the head of the packlord and the nose of a troll in carry. From the first guard recognizing the scarred face of the packlord rumour spreads like brushfire.  

The Governess is good to her word and grants a pardon for the back taxes and squatting charges. The landlords of the Wayward Chimera waste no time getting their new smithy occupied and enlist Udo the armorsmith to be their new tenant. He agrees to work on armor for the party in exchange for free rent.

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