Valiants of Varnhaven

No Peat for Whiskey

All went well.  No one died.  The bog witch had a little job for our local heroes and they set off to investigate a missing shipment from the peat farms far to the southeast.

Downtime Part I

Having returned victorious from your journey into the swamp you have gained a small amount of fame.

The Captain was very interested to hear about the adventure and asked for it to be repeated a few times. His main points of interest were in Lyle's crops, theft from the Gloam Hasher and the mud creatures / golems. In order to protect the Brewbaker Farmstead and reputation the Captain asked that you leave out Lyle's involvement. At least the least savory parts of kidnapping, theft, and ritual magic.

The first week was full of questions, free drinks, and asking to hear the journey's events once more. The stories eventually became less asked for and life returned to normal.

The Brewbaker farmstead has been very quiet of late and not many of the family have come into town since the "illness" that claimed Lyle's life.

The Gripplie were able to move onto the southern lake shores with very little trouble or incident. Many of the children have befriended the little frog children and are often seen running around playing a new game called "leap frog".

Chief Acro has been working on building relations between the town and his village and has offered and had his village help in the replanting of the Brewbaker's burnt fields. Their love and skill with plants has been seen as a blessing and a boon to Bridgetown. The loss of the Brewbaker's crops may not be as devastating as first thought. With good weather and time it may not be long before the farmstead is back in order.

Spring fades away and summer arrives with its blistering heat and humidity. The Summer "Pool" Festival is fast approaching and although the blacksmith continues to work upon the "crocodile" boat he believes it will still be incomplete before the whirlpool's summer arrival. He hopes that the parts he has ordered will arrive with Thimble's next visit closer to the Pool Harvest.

The travelling merchant Thimble has come through town in time for the Festival. His wagon is always loaded up with cloth, tools, food stuffs, alchemical supplies and a few strange sundries. Somewhere along the way he also picked up a set of magic bracers of archery (450gp), a bag of holding (400gp), gem of seeing (3,300gp) and a potion of hill giant strength (200gp).

The town is ready for the Summer Pool Festival and it may be needed in order to relieve tensions.

Bandits have attacked the keep of Duke Varnhelm and many of his men were slain. In order to replenish his guards, the Duke has recalled all the soldiers except for Captain Levon. The villagers are worried that their defenses will be weakened, and have increased the training of the local militia.

Captain Levon has asked for Thorum the blacksmith to aid in training the town militia and asked for all tested and blooded to volunteer for nightly patrols.

The Festival is a mere two nights away and the low hum of excitement in town has steadily increased to an audible hum in the air.

Dungeon of the Swamp Frogs

So last week you went to meet the Frogmen, who were pretty blunt with yout…

  • nope we don't have the kid
  • but we are owed three years of servitude from that kid
  • Lyal made the deal in exchange for some seeds
  • Lyal didn't keep his end of the bargain, so we burned the bushes down
  • No, we didn't burn any of the rest of the farm.  We're not MONSTERS
  • You want to change the terms of the deal?  You fight our champion.  You win, you get to decide how the terms are met.  We win, and WE decide.

And then the frogman champion beat up Jason with a dead fish.

The Frogmen agreed to release both the boy and Lyal from their obligations in exchange for you guys clearing out an abandond dwarven fort, deeper in the swamp, so the Frogmen could move in.

Harrell was squeemish about going deeper in to the swamp, but agreed to drop you off at the stone pier…

A path from the pier lead up to a patio of sorts, where visitors or dignitaries could meet with the dwarven commanders above ground for discussions and negotiations.  However, the patio was now sunk in to a foot of water, and inhabited by a couple of giant land crabs.  MELEE!!

And Jason gets beat up by seafood.

After you cleared the slime from your eyes, you made your way deeper into the abandond fort… now soaked with swamp water, covered in algae, and crumbling apart.  The first room you found was a chapel to the dwarven god Grimli, of the Fiery Axe, that still hummed with faint dwarven mojo.  Past that, a gaurd room at the base of a watch tower, with a distant buzzing, far above.

at the top of the tower, you found a couple of giant WASPS, left behind to protect their nest, while the rest of the hive did battle with a band of LIZARDMEN below.  The lizardmen took a couple of pot shots at you, but you easily ducked them and went back down the stairs.

You continued to explore, and found a long, sloping hallway leading under the water.  The hallway was trapped, and you narrowly missed the chance to be roasted alive.  Instead, you bypassed the trap to find a workshop further below.  

Benches, tools, rotting supplies, and a … crocodile?  Aligator?  Hard to tell.  As you got closer to the contraption floating in the dive pool, ropey tendreils of seaweed snaked out at you wrapping themselves around you and pulling you under.

And Jason gets beat up by nori.

Eventually you pulled the seaweed off you, chopped it into small enough bits to not be a threat any more, and settled down… figuring what with the trap up the hall and this room cleaerd out, it might be a good place to get a rest.

Into the Swamps

So last week you fought fires, investigated some arson, found some clues (some crude arrows, a chipped knife wrapped in aligator hide, a broken clay pot with dried black mud inside, and a twisted, black root you found in a dried up puddle of mud), headed to the swamp, fought some wolves, met old Toothless Harrell, and decided to go visit the Frogmen.  

You skirted the swamp until you found a path leading deeper into the muck, and ultimately to a hermit named Toothless Harrell.  He offers guide services and information, and ultimately some facilitation in negotiating with some of the other creatures living in the swamps.

Toothless Harrell warns you that the Frogmen aren't so friendly any more.  He still does some trade with them, but is cautious and wary.  He knows that the Gloam Hasher has taken up residence with them, but hasn't seen her directly since she arrived.   He thinks she is a Bog Witch who was exiled or fled from the Black Witch Bog, but doesn't know for sure.  He knows that she's dark and scary.

Toothless Harrell's hut is built on stilts, keeping it above the muck.  A rickety wooden patio surrounds all four sides, covered in an amalgamation of oiled canvas, wood shingles, and animal skins.  Several wooden rocking chairs are scattered about, along with small crates he's flipped to make tables.  

Pots and planters over flow with flowers, herbs, and berry bushes.   Tomatoes, pepper plants, beans,  even some planters with rows of onions and potatoes line the railings of his patio. Stringers of fish hang to dry in the sun.  On the side of his patio overlooking the water, fishing poles lean against the railing, their lines stretching off into the water.  Harrell pasues to tug at a rope, pulling a trap up out of the water.

"Crawdads have been plump this year.  I'll toss some of these in a stew, if yer stickin' around for a bit."  He pulls out a crayfish as large as your fist, looking it over before dropping it into a nearby pot and reaching back into the trap.   "Got a dozen of these things in here!"  

He fishes the clicking, wriggling crawdads out of the traps and drops it back in the water.  He ambles through his pots and planters, plucking off peppers and pulling up a few potatoes.

"So… uh… you guys stickin around for a bit then?  Wanna eat some lunch before we go see dem frogs?"


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