W:DH Update – Shall we play a game?

I’m currently unconscious on the dirty floor of a warehouse in the Dock Ward.  Just how did I end up lying in an expanding pool of my own blood?

I guess it all started last night at the card game I run in the Yawning Portal.  I really like the people who have been showing up to play.  I guess I would consider them friends, especially Tobby, who has been coming to the table the longest.  As we were finding our seats that night, a fight broke out.  It’s a fairly common occurrence, but this fight seemed decidedly unfair to Yagra – the half-orc who was being attacked by multiple foes.  To my delight, much of our group stepped in to help immediately.  We also quickly found that the fight wasn’t quite as unfair as we first thought.  Yagra would probably have fared just fine even if we hadn’t stepped in to help. I noticed the leader of the attackers had several eyes tattooed on his head. I don’t recall seeing anything like it before.  Yagra explained that she had done some work for the group, but they wanted more from her before paying her their agreed fee.  I could understand her displeasure. She mentioned that the leader was named Krince, and was obviously someone who should not be trusted.

That bit of ugly business finished, we settled in to play our game.  Then a troll climbed out of the portal at the center of the tavern.  We were actually a bit excited to get the opportunity of taking some free pot-shots at the troll from the safety of the balcony where we sat.  As most of the other patrons ran for the exit, our new acquaintance Yagra ran down the stairs to face the troll.  To my surprise, Jumanji followed!  Moments later, we discovered what had driven the troll into our midst.  Stirges, who were attacking the troll, now swarmed into the tavern looking for new victims. One attached itself to Tobby, who dropped from the blood loss.  In the confusion, Boaz dropped as well.  As I rushed to give aid, I noticed another stirge had attached itself to Shava.  She killed it, and it dropped to the floor.  Durnan, the proprietor of the Yawning Portal, had joined the fight against the troll and called for fire to be brought to bear against the creature.  It was destroyed shortly after in a cloud of horrid smelling smoke.

After the smoke cleared, we reentered the tavern with hopes of playing our game.  Durnan approached our table and mentioned to Shava and I that the sage Volo was looking for help with a bit of work, and he had recommended our group.  We decided to listen to the offer as he was apparently right upstairs at that very moment.  We found that Volo was looking for a friend who had recently gone missing.  The friend’s name is Floon Blagmaar .  He was described as a striking, tall man with wavy red hair.  He and Volo had been doing a bit of bar-hopping – ending at the Skewered Dragon.  Volo had retired for the night, but apparently Floon never made it home.  Volo promised money up front for accepting the job, with more to come when we found Floon.  Our game would once again be postponed as we accepted the task.

We went to the Skewered Dragon and got some information from a patron named Whisker who suggested we be a bit more discreet if we returned for more information in the future.  His information led us to Zoblob’s shop.  We entered the shop and Shava talked a bit with Zoblob himslef – who had some eye tattoos on his head.  That makes two people with these odd tattoos. Zoblob indicated that Floon was not alone.  He was accompanied by Rainier Neverember, and they were both accosted by a group of men with winged snake tattoos.

We retired for the evening, but met back up at the Skewered Dragon the next morning to gather more information.  Shava noticed a man acting drunk while trying to listen to our conversation.  As she approached, he vomited at her.  She deftly dodged the “attack” and the man started to leave the tavern.  Shava bolted out the door in front of the man, and shortly after Jumanji followed.  We asked about the man and the barkeep told us his name is Argus. From what I gather, Shava disguised herself in an attempt to follow Argus.  Jumanji followed at a distance as well.  They followed for a while, but ultimately lost their quarry as Jumanji watched him leap from one rooftop to another!  Boaz stayed in the tavern to perform on stage while hoping to gather more information.  Tobby suggested that he and I meet a friend of his for lunch (and information)  We made our way to Monte’s Heartland Hot Sausages.  Monte appears to do decent business from his cart as there was quite a line. Upon seeing us, Monte closed his cart and we went to the Bloody Fist to talk.  He told Tobby of a warehouse with a winged snake symbol discretely placed on it.  Tobby explained to me that the winged snake is actually the symbol of the Zhentarum, and the eye tattoos indicate a group called the Xanathar.  Theses two groups were on friendly terms previously, but now are attacking each other.

When our group reunited, we decided to investigate the Zhentarum warehouse.  Later that night, we decided to investigate its interior.  I must admit, breaking in to a warehouse – even one run by the Zhentarum is not something I would normally consider any longer, but I know that I might be able to keep an eye on my new friends if there’s trouble.  Tymora bless my bold action – I just hope it’s not too reckless.  Tobby approached the warehouse first and we followed.  As Tobby entered, we immediately realized we were in for a fight.  There were several bird-people poised to attack. Perhaps our approach was a bit too noisy.  The fight started poorly for our side.  Tobby dropped.  I was too far to give aid quickly – I must stay closer to him.  As I tried to fend off attacks and make my way to Tobby, another of our group dropped.  This couldn’t be happening!  Boaz cast a healing spell to aid our fallen friend – bless him!  As I made it to Tobby, my rushed attempt to help him failed.  As I looked at my fumbling, blood-covered hands in terror, I too, was struck down.  As I lost consciousness, I realized these bird people were seemingly quoting other people. “Tie up pretty-boy in the back room.” My vision blurred. “Follow the yellow signs in the sewers.” My vision darkened.  “No time to loot the place, get him to the boss.”  Everything went black.

Perhaps we should have just played our card game.

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