Although quarters were cramped, we rested well at the cabin and set off the following morning using a map found at the goblin village to guide us. Walthus gave his best guess as to the meanings of the crude sketches on the map, and we set off toward the ruins of a ship that had run aground. Cora remained behind at the cabin and the rest of us set off.
Toshiro was visibly shaken as we approached the burned out husk and discovered the name of the ship, the Kaijitsu Star. The ship’s aft stood out, impossible to ignore. We thoroughly investigated it; I was able to secure purchase and make my way along the remnants of the structure, finding an enchanted blade in the hold alongside a decayed goblin skull. As the blade is the chosen weapon of his goddess, Adalan took the scimitar for his own use and we continued on. The sword should suit him well; Busty was able to detect necromantic energies emanating from the weapon. Hopefully the priest can contain or make use of them.
From the charred remains of the ship we ventured to the ruins of an outdoor temple. The pillars were huge, and a blood soaked altar stood out against the wilderness. A globe of impenetrable darkness occupied the center of the temple. A simple light spell was cast near it, but did not dispel the darkness. Using his naginata, Bellum prodded the darkness, and then chaos erupted.
A cloud of poisonous fog erupted from the darkness, which subsequently dissipated. A monstrous green dragon was revealed where the darkness had been, and although I had managed to avoid being trapped in the cloud, others were not so fortunate. Busty collapsed, overcome by the toxic cloud. Enraged, Fosdjiin unleashed his axe and sent it sailing towards the wyrm, burying the blade in the creature’s side.
Bellum stepped up and engaged the creature, inflicting a grievous wound with his sword. Adalan was able to revitalize Busty and I closed in on the dragon as well, though my handaxe seemed rather ineffective compared to the blades the others wielded. Without further injury the dragon fell. I can only hope we deal with Blackfang as easily should we encounter him again. The dragon was found to be guarding a stairway leading down, and after regaining our strength we traveled down into the darkness.
As soon as Bellum stepped off the stairs a wave of ethereal purple light washed over us, then retreated. It took a moment for us to realize that some of our magic items had become mundane. Cautiously we proceeded into the darkness; as we are without Kyras, I found myself scouting ahead through the caves. I tried descending through a hole in the stone floor, but my grip slipped, making what should have been an effortless landing unnecessarily painful.
The rest of the party descended on a rope into the chamber. A group of skeletons occupied the room. All but one were strewn on the ground; the last sat atop a decorated chest, and Toshiro recognized the crest on its armor as that of the Kaijitsu clan. Adalan unleashed a torrent of energy that disintegrated all the skeletons save the seated one. Toshiro issued a challenge to the Kaijitsu skeleton, and although he suffered a tremendous wound, the Kaijitsu retainer was able to defeat the skeleton.
With haste we returned to the cabin and reunited with Cora, then made our way back to Sandpoint. There was much discussion along the way about the fate of the chest and the items found within. The disagreement largely centered around the rightful owners of the chest, whether it should be returned to the Kaijitsu family or the party should rightfully claim it as a reward. Truthfully, if Toshiro had not pointed out the Kaijitsu crest, I would not have objected to the party keeping it. Knowing that it once belonged to the Kaijitsu family, however, I did not feel right taking it for our own gain.
Eventually an agreement was reached to return the chest to the Kaijitsu family with Toshiro offering the rest of the group a sum of gold to serve as a reward. The family graciously gave us the entirety of the contents, and we paid a visit to the different magicians in town to determine what exactly we had found. A slippery old acquaintance helped instruct Cora and Busty in the use of one of the wands which, when used properly, could identify the nature of other magical items. We had a multitude of potions and discovered what had drained the magic from our other items. A rod shaped of two intertwined dragons was kept in a smaller chest, nestled within the large one. In the magician’s words, we have to feed it magical items to increase its power.
Perhaps it will make for a nice surprise for our old friend Blackfang.
Through all of this we found no sign of Ameiko’s brother and sadly informed her of this back at the Dragon. Conrad was missing, as he and others in town had departed for a conference of some sort. That blasted cavalier was recounting a tale of rescuing a farmstead from an ogre while we caught up with Ameiko. Perhaps I’ll look into this matter further. Given his tendency to embellish, I suspect it was likely little more than a pair of goblins that his party vanquished.
At last, we’re departing from the Dragon, taking the rest of the night to go our own ways while we wait for Conrad’s return. Perhaps this coin will help Rilen make some needed upgrades to his shop.