PnP:Liberation of Osoerde Turn Twelve

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Dear Rudolph,

As always it was good to see you, and I do appreciate your aid in my mission here. As promised, I did discuss your gift with the Duke and I will get to that in due time. I did not have the chance to inform you about details of the rest of our trip to Aamon, so let me get to that first.

After dispatching the other monsters, we headed towards the source of the strange lights. We arrived at the outskirts of a ring of thick vegetation, and at the center we saw a large group of infected townspeople, the deep-dwelling monsters, and several of the twisted townsfolk we had previously encountered at Blacksly. I knew that place was tainted by something, and it seems we had learned the answer. They were servants to whatever foul thing the lake monsters worshiped. In fact I think it was Cerin who pointed out they may even breed with the monsters.

The group was conducting some dark rite around a huge well, and several more of the missing were bound to stone altars as sacrifice to whatever lurked there. Before we could act one of the cultists drove a sacrificial blade into the chest of a victim, and the whole island seemed to shift underneath our feet. Something was stirred by the spilled blood, and we saw black tentacles start to arise from deep within the well! We were spurred into action by the horror of it all, unleashing a furious assault on the cultists and the deep spawn before they even knew we were there. We felled nearly half their number in the attack, but that still left more than a dozen to deal with.

The infected townsfolk dropped easily, their bodies host to the black, writhing masses as before. Unlike previous encounters though, the smaller masses slithered off to near the well instead of attacking us. The deep spawn were more ferocious, but we had seen their measure and were better prepared to deal with them this time. It was the folk from Blacksly that surprised us though. They wielded dark magics from their master, and the man who was constable there nearly killed Draken (who curiously appeared again when most needed) with one blast of magic.

Our cause was not helped when the smaller tentacle masses arose and coalesced into a beast of mouths and lashing limbs. Its assault seemed nothing but mindless rage, and it emitted a scream that made my head hurt and my ears bleed! Although I am not certain, I fear it was this scream that finally ended poor Draken after he was felled by more dark magic. With luck his addled mind will finally find some peace.

Seeing more of the victims slain and whatever laired inside the well growing larger, William and I moved to protect the final sacrifice while the others finished off the deep spawn and the huge tar monster. The constable attempted to kill me with the same magic that dropped poor Draken, but I managed to avoid the worst of it. He drew near and attempted to unleash an attack that would have killed the poor captive girl but I leapt in front of his magic to shield her. I had no intention of fighting some elder god-thing that day. Thankfully the constable finally felt Eloéle's Kiss and fell, for I did not have much fight left in me. I saw that Varg's sword and William's fire magic managed to destroy the black mass as well.

As we freed the girl, we thought we would have a moment of peace to recover. It was not meant to be. The thing in the well lashed out with dozens of reaching tentacles, drawing its servants and poor Draken into the well as it vanished back to wherever it came from. Then again the island shook, but it did not stop this time. We took the girl and ran for the boats, barely reaching them before the island sunk beneath the waters of the lake, taking whatever horrors it held with it. The fog vanished along with the island, and the lake seemed to return to a normal state. Shocked, wounded, and tired beyond measure, we slowly made our way back to Aamon.

Once there, we were greeted with joy by the townspeople even though we had only recovered one of their missing. Whatever their opinions of William were before, they saw him as nothing more than a great hero now. It was clear he had gained their loyalty, and while the Duke wanted Tooms to remain behind to help keep this area from Jaison, the commander said it was better if he and his men came with us back to Aerenwode. Despite the ordeal, we had gained many allies after this odd encounter and William seems emboldened by this victory.

As for your aid, as I predicted William did not feel poisoning the Hound and his men was worth endangering the other people of Killien. Although they are broken, he felt there was hope they could come back from the abuses they have suffered at the Hound's hands. We discussed some other options though, and you may have inspired some other plans to deal with the Hound once and for all. I think my skills may be called on again to infiltrate Killien, for we have heard rumors that the Hound is planning on launching an attack on the Aerenwode to rout us out into the open. We are meeting to plan our attack, so I must leave off here. I will be in contact again soon, and until then may Eloéle protect your secrets with her shadows.

Harker Graywind

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