Our party was ushered into a holding room where shortly thereafter they were joined by a man who introduced himself as Daniel Hutter, a trade lawyer, who offered whatever assistance he could provide. The players outlined all that had happened to them and Daniel’s interest was piqued when they mentioned Naeris, the elf child. The merchants of Cairndow have been pushing hard lately to get their foot in the door so to speak within The Dorvale, and plumb their depths for the rich materials contained therein.
Daniel had William draw a picture of the guards faces that made the arrest and instantly knew them to have a bit of a shady reputation. He proposed that the guards who made the arrest kidnapped the child and plan to use him to leverage merchant access to The Dorvale. He advised that the party convince the judge that Naeris was essential to their defense in the case and that they could not proceed without him. Meanwhile Daniel would assist the government in searching for the guards and Naeris.
The party reconvened in the courtroom and after a bit of back and forth, convinced the judge that their claim of Naeris’ existence needed to be proven or disproven before a ruling could be made. Judge Hynes agreed and called a 24 hour recess to find the guards. The party spent the next 24 hours tensely waiting in prison before they were taken back to the courthouse. Once there, they received some shocking information.
The guards had indeed kidnapped Naeris, though the authorities had fortunately recovered him whole and were keeping him under guard. Additionally, they had found some additional items which had been taken from the boat. The first item was a note calling for an assassination of Captain Jonesy signed Belloral with a star shaped symbol underneath it. The second item was Captain Jonesy’s journal, the last entry of which was explaining that he had found this note and was very suspicious that the party, or one of its members, had been sent here to kill him.
Given this new information, Judge Hynes agreed to release the party at the cost of 500gp and said they could come back in an hour to pick up Naeris. The party returned to the prison and collected their things, then returned one final time to the courthouse to pay their fine and locate their horses. After the fine was paid, they headed to the docks district to pick up their stabled horses. Shortly thereafter they picked up Naeris and headed out of the city.
The 2 and a half day travel to the edge of The Dorvale was interrupted on the second night by a large Bugbear, however the party managed to take him down, sustaining only minor injuries. They arrived at the edge of the forest as the sun began to sink down in the sky the following day. William went into the forest to find some game and was taken down by a sleeping dart to the neck.
The party entered the forest to locate him and ended up being taken down by the same darts as well. They were all roused in the dead of the starry night within a wooden cage on the edge of a rather large elven outpost. The wood elves sparred and ravenously consumed meat around campfires, eventually 2 scouts came over to converse with the party. They explained that they had been taken prisoner because they were trespassing on their sacred land.
The party discussed things back and forth and they gleaned several bits of information from the scouts. Notably that a rift had already opened up under Nordrassil and that the city was under siege. As the scouts discussed in private, they watched as one of them grew chalk white pale and his eyes turned black, without a moments hesitation, he tore into his ally, biting at his neck and turning completely feral. The camp quickly broke down into chaos as more elves turned.
Sensing the urgent need to withdraw from this camp, Nick broke down the door and the party retreated into the forest. Once they stopped to catch their breath, Davide gathered his bearings and the party set out on a grueling 12 hour run to get to Nordrassil without further delay. Finally, they reached the gates to the city and were ushered in under armed guard. They were taken into the city which was clearly under siege from within and were introduced to Aranyth, a sage of the elven people.
Aranyth spoke with the party about what had brought them here and explained that the only thing in existence that might empower a heartstone to be used as a realm portal, would be a complete set of all 5 of The Arbiter’s Tears. The last known location of one of these items was in Klehermont. Before the dicussion could continue, it was interrupted by a runner who came in and said that a group of the attackers wanted to meet under banner of a white flag.
Aranyth invited the party to accompany him and they met Arkxes, a demonic looking orc standing well over 8 feet tall and looking quite intimidating, flanked by 4 additional orcs that were similar in look and stature to him. He claimed that he was leader of the attacking army and that their terms were that the elven people need to submit entirely to their reign or they would kill the elven prisoners and continue to poison the Heartstone and turn their race into the pale faced, black eyed, cannibalistic monsters that some had already been condemned to.
Aranyth returned with a threat that if the attackers did not evacuate the city with all haste, that the elves would slaughter them. Arkxes laughed and returned back to their line while Aranyth and his followers returned to their retreat. Once back in the strategy room, the party explained that Durgeddin’s blade may be able to help them retrieve the Tears. Aranyth explained his worry with this idea, stating that the Tears are sentient artifacts that can act of their own will and volition and could very well choose not to heed that call.