Sandpoint Chronicles

Moonshine Rats

SESSION 2

The group starts to introduce themselves, and decide to stick together for the time being. They ask the saved nobleman, Aldern Foxglove, for the cheapest or best inns in town. Gratefull for a chance to continue talking to Shinsui, he describes the five inns of the town. He himself stays in the Rusty Dragon. Shinsui wants the comfort of the White Deer Tavern, though the group eventually settles on the peace, quiet, and relative cheapness of [[Risas Place]]. They first make a stop at the Cathedral however, after the militiaman notified them of the emergency hospital there.

The long tables on the square, just an hour ago filled with food and drink, have now been turned into impromptu beds for the wounded by the Cathedral acolytes. A few of them administer to the cuts and bite wounds of the group. Numumn gets the advice to bring Tusks, her heroic walrus, to the towns stablemaster, as animals are not within the expertise of the healers.

Jacobus , unwounded, goes to talk with the sherrif who is coordinating the militia in front of the Cathedral. He thanks them for their help, and suggests they stay in an inn. Once the situation is dealt with and he has had a change to investigate the attack, he will send for them. Sandpoint will have need for people like them, and a reward or bounty is hinted at.

When the group arrives at the inn they take some time to talk to the barkeep, Vodger, and eat some local food.  Numumn notices the fine dwarven furniture in the room, and Bam chats with the locals in a corner. These are chatting about sheriff Hemlock. Vodger suggests the previous sheriff did a far better job at the defence of the town, and goblins never would have gotten in. The sheriff should spend less time in the local whorehouse, the Pixie's Kitten, and more seeing to Sandpoint's troubles. 

When night falls, Vodger suggests a deal with the group. He offers to let them stay for a week, free of charge, if they should help him rid his cellar of rats. The food, he quickly ensures, is not kept in that cellar of course. But his rare and valuable moonshine, brewed in the small distilleries of the swampfolk to the south, is securely kept in small casks in the back of the cellar. Now normally, rats wouldn't trouble him, but he swears these rats are the size of dogs. If the party would do this, however, he insists they should at night, so none of the guests will know his unsavory problem.

The party decides to rest from their busy day, however, and recuperate somewhat from their wounds. Everyony awakes well rested, though it appears Shinsui has drawn a penis on the forehead of Jacobus. The rest of the party awkwardly avoids eye contact, and the old man continues on with them unaware. 

The party heads for the towns stable, to heal Tusks and collect Shinsui's packmule Momo. The monk curiously wanders into Wheens Wagons and has a rather short conversation with Wheen himself.

In Goblin Squash Stables they recognize the owner for the large man who was brutally smashing the dead goblin yesterday. As evidenced by his stable's name and his collection of goblin ears and other trophies, the man detests the critters. He points out the drawing on Jacobus' forehead and sells a few goods to the party.

The group continues to the Rusty Dragon Inn, where Aldern, the man they saved yesterday, currently resides. He welcomes them for a meal and drinks (ordering wine for himself and Shinsui, and ale for Shinsui's 'servants'). He explains he is currently just passing through as he is renovating his manor, a day's journey outside of Sandpoint. For the same reason he does not currently have a lot of gold at hand, though, if the group wants to, he would like to take them on a boar hunt to show his gratitude. The group agrees to meet him the next day at dawn at the northern town gates.

Before leaving the inn, the group talks to Ameiko, the innkeep of the Rusty Dragon. She thanks them for rescuing Aldern, and after Shinsui fails in keeping the taverns attention in a small performance, they ask her a few questions about the goblin attack. Ameiko tells them she has never heard of a goblin raid actually entering the town, and that any attacks usually happen on the roads outside of Sandpoint, near their tribal territories. She thinks it very odd, and hopes some information can be coerced from the goblin captives held in Sandpoint Garrison

In the meantime, Bam is mingling with the crowd, and discovers Ameiko had a history as an adventurer. She actually is the daughter of one of Sandpoint's major noble houses, the Kaijitsu family. She apparently had a falling-out though, as she refuses the company of her father, even now that he lies sick in his manor. Ameiko herself appears to be tight-lipped over the entire situation and avoids the subject.

Afterwards, Shinsui points the party to Sandpoint Garrison. She wants to interrogate the goblins. She knocks on the door, claiming falsely that Sheriff Hemlock has sent them to investigate. The answering guard looks behind him and calls the sheriff who, of course, is currently in the garisson. Unfortunately for Shinsui, Belor Hemlock does not take kindly to lies. He invites everyone but Jacobus in, who hid around the corner as soon as he heard Shinsui's plan.

The sheriff questions the group for their suspicious behaviour. Shinsui almost convinces him she is actually just a harmless pilgrim, when Bam, confused, mutters against Numumn that he though Shinsui was an opium smuggler. Unfortunately for her, Hemlock hears Bam, and decides he will need to check the belongings of the group. Since he is searching for any involved in the Goblin attack, he confiscates Long Wong's looted daggers and bow. He also confiscates Shinsui's box of thieves tools, to her frustration. Jacobus knocks on the door and tries to convince Belor they are just harmless drunkards, but again Belor sees through the lies. 

He gives the group the benefit of the doubt, however, due to their actions the day before. He sends a guard to Risa's place to confirm they actually spend the night there, and asks Aldern to vouch for them. 

Disappointed, the group exits the garrison. Shinsui convinces them she needs replacement thieves tools, and they decide to look for Sandpoint's most seedy inn for an underworld contact.

They arrive at the Fatmans Feedbag, a wretched hive of scum and villainy. Jacobus, again, decides to stay out of it. The rest enter the gloomy inn, after depositing their weapons in an empty barrel next to the door. Everyone stares at the group, and a filthy looking sailor says it's local custom for foreigners to buy everyone a drink. The innkeep claims his beer is of the highest and finest quality, and asks a price which probably doubles his month's profit. Shinsui does not seem to care however, and gladly pays the man. While the innkeep serves the tavern's drunks and sailors his watered down beer, a shady man in the corner waves the group to him. Bam sits uncomfortably close, happy as can be.

The man introduces himself as  Jubrayl Vhiski, an honest businessman who deeply cares for the surrounding farmers and settles around Sandpoint. They suffer most from the Goblins, and for a small fee he offers them protection. He remarks that if Shinsui wants him to look for the tools she requires, they need to become friends. And friends help eachother out. It just so happens that Jubrayl has a spot of trouble with one of his customers. The man refuses to pay, and he asks if the group would like to become friends and take care of that issue. The group politely refuse, and after paying another round manage to walk out of the tavern with only damaged pride.

They decide to deal with the rat problem. It is now night, and they enter the dark cellar. The moonlight only illuminates a few feet into the cellar, and Jacobus uses a magic cantrip to summon floating candlelights. Bam eats a few of the lights.

They enter a small dark hallway with two doors. One is badly damaged and splintered at the bottom, the other appears sturdier. They enter the first door, and immediately discover the rats. Four of them are the size of dogs, while two smaller ones skitter in the back. Bam and Long charge in the center, while Shinsui slips aside. Numumn takes the other flank and summons a magic totem of war, while Jacobus supports from the back with his ghostly aides. The rats are quickly dismembered, squashed or magically drained of lifeforce. 

The room is empty save for a few broken barrels and a door leading to the next chamber. This door as well has a hole in the bottom, enough for even these giant rats to crawl under. Bam kicks it open, and an even larger rat jumps from the corner of the room and crosses a beam of moonlight.

As soon as the creature enters the light, it twitches and stops. It sits upright, and looks at Bam with almost human eyes. It introduces himself as a travelling merchant, Sawyer, who had the ill luck to be the subject of a horrid curse. He and his family were cursed to become rats, only regaining their mind in the light of the moon. They had heard of Risa, Vodger's mother and the bar's owner, who is famed in the region as a sorceress of some power, capable perhaps of undoing their curse. However, outside of the moonlight in the cellar, he has lost his family some days ago, and asks for Bam's help.

While the rat gets closer, he suddenly notices the corpse of one of his cursed family through the door. Enraged, he shrieks, and leaps out of the light, attacking the bewildered farmhand. The fight is quickly over, however, and the Sawyer family slain. Jacobus asks the rest to keep what happened here between them.

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