Day 8 (part 2):
Went to Barthen’s Provisions in town with Noah, but they did not have anything of interest. Noah commissioned a ridiculous hat, true to his general ridiculousness to date. We then met up with Bruenor and Daar at the Miner’s Exchange, who visited the Cloisters for a few miscellaneous bits of equipment.
Halia Thorton, who runs the Miner’s Exchange, seems quite levelheaded. Sounds like Redbrands let her be not because she was working with Glasstaff, but because she was willing to stand up to their banditry. Other than the Redbrands, she has had no trouble. Halia provided a few bits of information on Craigmaw Castle and Thundertree, though. Craigmaw castle, Bruenors continuing goal, is named after the Craigmaw goblin clan. If we run across goblins they may be persuaded to give us a better idea of where it is. Halia also told of rumors of a dragon spotted flying around Thundertree, and pointed us to Alderleaf Farm where Queline could tell us more. She marked Thundertree on our map, and told us it was abandoned when Mount Hotenow erupted several decades ago.
The group conferred, and with Mudd still out of commission decided to go to Thundertree. I, for wanting something interesting to do until we have the information to find and dispose of Glasstaff. Noah, for the shiny gem (which might always be magical, and thus more interesting…). Bruenor likely to try and question some goblins along the way and get closer to Craigmaw Castle. And Daar, I suspect, for the rumors of a dragon. Daar is not forthcoming, speaking only of wanting to earn gold and wanting to travel onward.
We followed up on Halia’s rumors with Queline. The halfling learned her information about a year ago from Raidoth, a druid who travels the countryside. Thundertree is far, almost 3 days of travel. I am not sure any more that it is worth our time, Mudd should be up and about in a day or two at most… Though with the Redbrand’s immediate threat gone, I guess we have less reason to stick together. Everyone else seems unconcerned, and eager to set out.
Queline did tell us there was an impromptu festival planned in our honor for ridding Phandalin of Redbrands, but surely that can wait until we return from Thundertree. We set out right away following the directions we were given.
On our travels, a group of goblins tried an ambush with miserable results. We captured one and have a pretty exact location for Craigmaw Castle is… much closer to Phandalin than Thudertree is. Perhaps we should have gone scouting around there while waiting for Mudd?
I had a chat with Daar about about her acid, hoping she could give me some of it. Experimenting with a ready source of acid could make for some interesting mechanisms, and is always useful when under attack. Daar, however was suspicious and guarded, so did not push it. Maybe if we take more time in travels can find out why.
Our day was uneventful. I am keeping an eye out for trouble, and Daar and Bruenor are foraging. They do well, keeping us from digging in to rations. When we make camp I go hunting with Daar, though these lands are not familiar to me.
Our night was interrupted by a pair of ogers. They landed some heavy blows on Bruenor, but were otherwise not noteworthy.
We got in to Thundertree mid-day. Skirting the outside we saw one well-kept house and approached, finding Raidoth the druid cooking lunch inside.
During our shared lunch, Raidoth told us of the towns current residents, including undead, living plants, spiders, the dragon, and some black robed figures. Supposedly he doesn’t bother them, they don’t bother him… druids. The dragon is a younger green, but likely much more than we can handle. I am unsure of Daar’s plan of talking to it and running away if it attacks. Hard to run from something that can fly. The black robed figures with their dragon wing cloaks have something to do with the dragon as well. Could be quite dangerous.
Raidoth has roamed the nearby lands, so I asked about the sickly looking woods near the ruined village before Phandalin. The druid told us it was once the village of Conyberry, and was protected by a banshee. He said if a banshee stays in one place for a long time, the surrounding plants would likely suffer. I did not know banshees provided protection for villages… if the woods are sick, the banshee is still there. I wonder why the village was destroyed? If this story is true, perhaps the banshee could be rescued and convinced to provide protection to another village. It would be a strong guardian for Phandalin, and help it prosper.
The druid seemed to take no objection to us clearing some of the current Thundertree residents, and helpfully pointed to where the Dendrar’s family alchemy shop could be. We moved carefully through the ruins, easily clearing the second house of twig blights.
The third house was infested with giant spiders. They hid in the lair and webbed up Bruenor quite handily. Neither Noah, Daar, nor I were able to get any shots at them… it was overall surprisingly difficult. In the end Daar did what we should have started with, and lit the bloody place on fire, unfortunately burning the spiders before I could collect any venom. The firestorm of frustration from Daar did get a bit out of hand, and the druid is upset. If there was any chance of help from him, it is gone. And we likely now caught attention of the dragon or the wearers of the black cloaks.
We retreated from the town to get cover, and help us recover from the spider’s poison.