Before they set out for the Eye Woods, Hazel consults the maps she picked up in Nedra to learn that their trek will take months. A debate ensues, and Koda convinces the group to return to the orc-raided hamlet. Katara decides Maple Leaf is a good town to stay in and learn more about her elven heritage. The other four head back to the hamlet after stopping to reneg on their agreement with Rocher.
More buildings have been burned down, and the small little port looks worse than it did when they arrived two weeks prior. More wary of the locals than they are of the orcs, the party sets about trying to prepare an ambush for the next raid.
When the orcs come, a few days later, Calcifer spots them and warns the everyone into hiding. The first orc falls victim to Aura‘s pit trap, and the trap is sprung. Another building is set on fire and the orcs get off a warhorn signal before they are dispatched. After a moment’s reprieve, though, a warhorn signals back in the distance.
The main raiding party arrives with a squadron of orcs led by a mysterious figure cloaked in black. One spearman gets the drop on the party as they sneak out of a building and spears through Aura and Calcifer in seconds. The other orcs move on to find and slaughter the villagers. Near death, Koda arrives just in time to bring Primus’s magic to their rescue. Meanwhile, Hazel goes toe-to-toe with the black-clad figure.
His hood knocked back, this ice-blue skeleton of what was likely an orc in its former life seems riveted with ice-spikes. His eyes gleam with a bright blue fire. A series of well placed blows with her club eventually shatters his skull, and the party reconvenes on the small main street through town. The battle reconvenes as the orcs realize their leader has been defeated. Calcifer loses an eye in ensuing chaos, and Aura prevents the final orc from fleeing with a well placed dagger to the groin.
Having saved what remains of the populace, the party rests the night and tends their wounds before setting out to investigate the raiding camp. There they find shallow graves, a slave pen, sheepskin tents, and a decent firepit. In the largest tent, they uncover shipping manifests for merchants trading goods at the campt for slaves and corpses to transport into Ixelan. More or less of a refueling station for merchants. A quick discussion ensures, and the camp is looted and burned to the ground. The party returns what supplies they can to the hamlet before striking out for Nedra and the market.
Event Dates: The first two weeks of Lesalali, 372 AH