Nov 20 2011

Chronicles of Netheril, November 19th, 2011

Shadowfell – The Skins

As we left the Neglected Cemetery, Ash thought he saw a figure staring back at him from the other side of the cemetery gates. During the march to the skins, he had time to reflect on it and became convinced that it was Zark; and let the others know of his suspicions.

The skins surrounded most of Gloomwrought; with the southern quarter of the city touching the Bleak Sea. Since we had already had a horrible time crossing a swamp back in Toril, we wanted to avoid doing the same here in the Shadowfell. Luckily there was a small ferry-boat on the western edge of the swamp. When the ferryman asked us where we wanted to go we asked him to take us to the best place to find a representative of House Treyvan.

Since the Plaza District, which was the best place to start our search, was in the eastern part of the city the ferryman took the long way around to the east gate. Along the way we were attacked by a bog hag and her Otyugh pets. They tried to capsize the boat so they could eat us, but we easily killed them and safely reached the city’s eastern gates.

Shadowfell – Gloomwrought

From the eastern gate we headed to the marketplace in the Plaza District. We visited some stalls and asked around about setting up a meeting with a representative of House Treyvan. But no one knew anything. Along the way, we were approached by a man called Guin. This member of Carlin House was passing out fliers with deals on affordable castles.

We didn’t even have the time to read the fine print when we heard a stall vendor cry out “Thief!” and point at us. In the resulting confusion, Ash could swear he saw Zark slinking off in a back alley. But we were unable to follow him, because in mere moments the city guard was upon us.

They asked us to lay down our weapons and surrender peacefully. In exchange they assured us we would get a fair trial. With no way of knowing what a “fair” trial entailed, we decided to resist. Although we went to the extra effort of knocking them unconscious instead of outright killing them; we defeated the guard contingent fairly easily. At the point, reinforcements arrived and we had no choice but to surrender and let ourselves be taken away.

Fortunately, we had an ace in the hole. During the fight with the initial contingent of guards, a couple of them had managed to isolate Voulge and pin him down in a corner. To get away from them he activated the cloaking device {based on the Wizard’s Invisibility spell} he had received from Gwickerzip. He returned to the group and since he wasn’t our heavy hitter, he concentrated on healing and support techniques so that he could remain invisible for the rest of the fight.

He was still invisible when the reinforcements arrived and took us in custody. Before the guards could come close enough to hear him, he whispered to us to play it cool, and that he would break us out of jail the moment things quieted down.

The thing is we weren’t taken to the city jail; but to the arena. Apparently “fair trial” meant an arena death match against another group of accused. The winners would be declared innocent and those who died would be assumed guilty. Each side would have a sponsor. Ours as it turned out was a member of House Treyvan. He had heard about us asking questions in the marketplace and he was curious.

This turn of events was quite fortuitous. Had we escaped from prison, we would have become fugitives. On the other hand, a death match was something we could easily handle; especially with the surprise factor of a completely hidden ally. We’d be declared innocent of all charges and we would achieve our goal of speaking to a member of House Treyvan.

As for our opponents, they were accused of being smugglers and slavers. Now, it’s almost impossible for an accusation of slavery to be a case of mistaken identity. The acts committed by slavers, and the equipment they use is fairly unique to their trade. No one going about their daily lives would have their actions mistaken for those of a slaver. By the same reasoning, it’s also nearly impossible to be framed for slavery. All this to say that we didn’t have any qualms or hesitations about a fight to the death.

The fight itself was fairly easy. The biggest danger was the turret in the middle of the arena; it was spewing gouts of fire in random directions and intervals. When Voulge reappeared and blasted our opponents off the arena platform, it pretty much ended the match. The remaining slavers were thrown back onto the platform, but they didn’t have much fight left in them and we killed them quickly.

Having been declared innocent, we headed over to see the representative of House Treyvan.