3 min read

EoD 021: New Friends and Old Enemies

The heroes’ plan had changed
EoD 021: New Friends and Old Enemies

With great sorrow in their hearts, Dimble, Elmo, Helmia and Polumya returned to the Dancing Bear tavern to drown their sorrows. Two of their friends lay dead and cold in the bowels of the darkness below the so-called Shadowed Keep, and the loss lay heavy on their hearts. 

Their horror and sorrow were not at an end, though. In a tragic twist of fate, Lion’s father, Shawn, was in the tavern. He had come to Dulwich to get his son’s help with a problem at home and instead was confronted with the news that Lion was dead. Devastated and angry, he demanded help in retrieving his son’s body. Both Helmia and Polumya agreed as did a strange warrior who had overheard the conversation. This odd warrior—scaled, horned and almost seven-foot-tall—had been ignored by everyone in the tavern. A stranger from a distant land, his name was Jalt Bahumati, and he was a dragonborn here in Ashlar for his own inscrutable purpose.

For the next few days, the group rested and prepared to return to the Shadowed Keep. During their time in Dulwich, Elmo was joined by an old friend, Stor, and the adventurers made the acquaintance of Syllana—a female wood elf archer who agreed to accompany them to the keep. 

Dimble, meanwhile, had made a troubling discovery. Returning to his lodgings at Saini Alanen’s tower, he discovered the place closed and in darkness. Asking around, he discovered that no one had seen Saini for several days—not since another band of adventurers had arrived at the tower carrying a heavy chest. 

For much of the party, this mystery would have to wait, but Dimble was desperate to find out what had happened to his friend. Thus, when the group set out on the morning of the 7th, Dimble was not among its ranks. Neither was Elmo—his mother needed him in town, and he felt he should also watch over Dimble. All was not lost, however, as Stor took his place.


Heading west along the Great Road linking Ashlar’s towns the party made good time. Traffic was light, and most groups got out of the way of the heavily armed group. However, as they approached the overgrown track leading to the Shadowed Keep, the party came across a terrible scene of violence. Six peasants lay scattered about the road. Cautious investigation revealed two of the six were dead. Using some of their healing magic, the heroes tended those who could still be helped. The four survivors were Sampo Masterson and his three children, Laina, Satu and Viljo. They had been relocating from Dunstone to Dulwich—apparently, a ferocious dragon dwelled in the nearby hills and the family did not feel safe in the town—when bandits fell upon them. The bandits had slain two of the family and stolen their cart laden with all the family’s possessions.

The bandits’ senseless violence, brazen cheek and callous disregard for life outraged the heroes. They would recover the family’s possessions and have revenge upon the bandits. Shawn gave the family a handful of gold and told them to get to safety in Dulwich. After the party helped bury the dead, the four survivors departed.

To the Shadowed Keep

The heroes’ plan had changed. While they had originally planned to recover Lion’s and Theoden’s bodies, clearly, the bandits needed to be dealt with. Creeping along the overgrown track, the party reached the edge of the clearing in which stood the ruin undetected. Observing the ruin from hidden positions in the treeline, Syllana and Shawn could see one sentry on the tower roof. Both also heard the sound of laughter and of a cart being unloaded.

Incensed, both returned to their companions to plot a devastating assault on the tower…

This post is a session summary from my weekly 5e D&D Edgelands of Darkness campaign set in the Duchy of Ashlar.

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