As we drew closer to our Seaside Manor, Eva turned back to Waterdeep, never having cared much for the beach. She took most of the group with her, but Damian, Bordane, and Tauren intercepted the last of a group of sea creatures rushing to swim out into the ocean. Bordane seized his opportunity to begin claiming the territories of Umberlee with commanding these creatures to spread the word of his power, and then called upon his new storm aspect to drench them in rain made by his command. Tauren and Bordane had grabbed some of the corpses and threw them to the beasts, starting a feeding frenzy that The Coming Storm took part of, showing his rage and power to his (hopefully) new followers. From close study we figure them to be a natural shark lycanthrope – a were-shark. We found our manor had become a breeding ground, hatching 50 of the creatures only hours before we arrived. Oddest of all, perhaps, was each of the hatchlings had a trident with 2 weapon crystals. We allowed Damian’s 4 to keep theirs, and made plans to feed corpses here and try to get the were-sharks to associate this manor with a lair.
Upon returning to Agundar Manor, we were met by Azriel and Dannerly, along with a subdued dwarven guard by the name of Dackar Roaringstone, the same captain on duty the night of the infamous jailbreak. Bordane was pleased with their choice of first non-human target, and called in an expert to help with the questioning. Cherilyn Anteos came and asked her questions as Dackar slowly died in the secret dungeons at the Manor. He revealed all the information in the Knights of Antiquity posts 3 and 4. She also began tutoring Bordane in suffering, promising to deliver him to know Suffering as divine at the end of her training. Azriel and Dannerly threw the body of the cliff above Seaside Manor on their way to more hunting, this time along the docks.
Briar and Tauren visited the Church of Tymora while all this was happening, to keep an appointment with Jovena Roaringhorn. She told a tale of twins in her family, stricken with aspects despite being small children. They were running for their lives, trying to reach Waterdeep before they were found and killed; would we please help? She had brought with her a magic scroll that enhanced Taurens locate object spell, and he was able to sense the aspects in the hills surrounding Amphail. We quickly exclaimed that we would help, as quickly as we could assemble our ka-tet and make plans. I had identified her as a special conquest, and with Briar as my wingman made her my third Lust conquest before we departed.
Reunited, Bordane, Tauren, Damian and Briar all met with our friend at the Efrreti Bottle. He also knew of the small children, but he had more information that he wished to pass along, as he had promised he would in the dens of the Fields of Triumph. The aspects carried were Baator and Arborea, and there was a third aspect housed in a small dragon companion of the children – Scalykind. He commented that the planar nature of the aspects allowed them to be used as alignment aspects as well.
Back home again, we were finally reunited as a group. The NPCs of our tet revealed a plan to begin looking to the churches of Siamorphe and Sharess as possible sources of many aspects we as a group are seeking. We agreed to proceed with Siamorphe first. Eva then spoke of her long meeting with her lawyer, and disclosed that she had an aspect in a safety deposit vault. She believed her father left it to her, and it is the Spell aspect, carried in the form of a scroll. At that, the Bridesmaids showed up for their evening ceremonies, and Eva began shuttling the roaming spirits to Purgatory. As if on cue, Lord Darkness driving a dark carriage with shadows riding within, pulled by nightmare skeletons, still burning in their undead servitude, made his way to us and landed in the Agundar Courtyard. He already knew of Eva’s secret, claiming to see all things hidden in darkness, and came to barter a trade. He offered the Oracle aspect and three priests ready to convert to Eva’s worship in exchange for the Darkness and Spell aspects. Eva convinced him to trade the Oracle aspect and the priests for the Darkness aspect and the right to bargain for the spell aspect. He also commented that he was not a follower of the skeletor nor a friend/ally.
After he left, it was agreed that we would leave for Amphail in the morning, and sent message ravens to warn Amphail to be wary of Set followers and look for the children. We made a late night visit to the haberdashery, where we find Brian completing the clean up of his shop after the huge muscled investigator. He relays that he fell to a charm, and has no recollection of what he said. We found some scraps of paper outside with the words “castle” and “lanter” scribbled on them, but Brian did not recognize them as any thing. We told him of our intentions in Amphail, and he packed our provisions to be picked up on our way out of town the next morning.
Tauren and Briar awake at Tarm Manor, to have a brief breakfast before leaving. There is some father-son bonding, and arrangements for our stoalzaners to be bred. He also gives a prize stallion to replenish the failed Amphail stables and build relations with his brother. He introduces me to several family horse grooms and breeders, and I am immediately drawn to Candace, who falls as my 4th lust conquest before we even get the horses picked. We then all hit the road to Amphail.
The road is uneventful until we get close to the farms where the dire animals had been reported. There we find blood and trace it to the farms to discover all the beasts have been killed or driven away. Getting closer to our targets, a locate object spell led us to an old and crumbling keep. A trapdoor led to caverns below guarded by vicious large dogs. We could sense the aspects and hear the cries of the children, but they were in2 different passages. Following the aspects, we encountered Norsinnow, and held palaver. He appealed to Damian first, but we agreed to accept Arborea for Briar, allow him to keep Baator, and part as not-enemies. He told us of lizard men taking the small dragon and its Scalykind aspect. He also told us of the creature he called deathweb, who was holding the children in its lair. He did not claim to know how the aspects were released from the children, and said he had no affiliation with the deathweb. At any rate, we loosed a dire wolverine to slash apart the webs and we defeated the horrific undead thing and its spider swarm to release the children. We returned them to Jovena, waiting at the carriage, and proceeded on to Amphail.