15
Feb
12

D&D: Elderyn – Act 2: Session 8

ACT 2: SESSION 8
PREVIOUS: ACT 2: SESSION 7
NEXT: ACT 2: SESSION 9

Traveling west until late in the evening, the party made camp and then followed the road south  to Erberek. After yet another day’s full travel, they came to the entrance to the mighty Erberek Citadel, a grand gate cut straight into the side of a mountain. Outside, they stabled their horses and then continued in on foot along with the few other traders and travelers coming to and from the Dwarven city.

After traveling a long hall leading deep into the mountain, they emerged into a large, open crevice inside the mountain. A magical light high up at the top of the chamber cast something approximating sunlight across the city, which was built into the side wall of the crevice.

Splitting up, to see what they can learn, the four move about the first few floors of the city. The upper floors, where they first arrived, are devoted primarily to merchant, government and recreational persuits. While they are out, they resupply some of their spent gear and look about at some of the many quality items created or traded at the Citadel.

In the market districts, Scourage and Harold observe that many of the stores and merchant carts are decorated with large blue banners. Listening in on some conversations between the dwarves, they gather that an election is going on and that the banners mark those stores as supporting a group called the Mithril Court who are backing a family by the name of House Gemviper for office. House Gemviper promises a new era of prosperity a free trade with the surface world.

Clotor, meanwhile, heads into one of the taverns, Lucky Lucy’s, on a lower level, looking to gather information there. Hanging from some of the homes and outside of Lucky Lucy’s, are red banners. Listening in to conversations in the bar and speaking to the tavern owner, Lucy Ironfist, Clotor learns that the banners are for a group called the Hammer Smiths backing House Ironshard in the election. The group appears to have a lot of support among the lower class.

Exploring the uppermost levels, Nedda finds black banners hanging from the political offices, guards barracks and some of the grand manors of the nobility. What mostly catches her eye, is the black eye over a wide triangle stitched into the banner with silver thread. After asking around, she learns that the banners are for the incumbent Kor’Krons, backing House Swordsteel, who have won the last seven elections on a platform of increasing military power and isolationism.

House Banners of Erberek

In their information gathering, it became apparent that all three parties were looking to hire able bodied individuals to assist with their election plans. The others gathered together to discuss what they had found, but Nedda, sensing an opportunity, instead visits the the party headquarters of the Kor’Krons. Inside, a wrinkly dwarf with a thick, black beard greats her disdainfully as she enters, “Yes? What is it that you want?”

“Afternoon, sir. I overheard that you were looking for workers to assist with your reelection campaign, I thought I would offer my services.”

“Your services?” the dwarf sneered back at her, “What would we want with your services? Why would you be interested in Dwarf politics?”

“I have no interest in Dwarf politics, I have an interest in gold, good sir.” She smiled back at him. “But I think you could use the services of someone like me, who can get things you might want or go places you might want gone to.”

The dwarf squinted at her hard, as though deep in thought before nodding. “Very well, perhaps a test then. To prove your worth and your…  dedication. One of the merchants a few floors down, Galvin Silverbeard, has failed to pay the proper taxes on his goods he is selling to the surface dwellers. We haven’t put together enough evidence to have his property seized by the guard, but we know he is bringing his profits back in to the citadel today. If you were to…  acquire his strongbox of gold as he brings it back into the city, we would consider that an appropriate tax for his violations and prove your value to the party. Our scouts report that his men should be arriving this very afternoon with their ill gotten profits.”

Nedda smiled at him, “No problem. I’ll be back before you know it. For a hefty share of the profits, I assume.” The dwarf nodded slowly, then turned back to his work without so much as another word. Quite pleased with herself, Nedda turned and headed back to the entrance to the citadel to await the incoming shipment.

Having gathered at Lucky Lucy’s to discuss their next move, the party grew concerned that Nedda had not yet returned. After briefly discussing what they had learned, the party left to search the city for the young halfling.

Meanwhile, Nedda spotted her mark as they entered through the front doors. Two dwarves pulled a wagon, empty save for a tarp covering a small mound of what appeared to be traveling gear in the back. Two mechanical constructs, roughly the size and appearance of medium sized dogs, wandered along with them as they made their way through the city.

Shadowing them, Nedda waited until they were far enough away from prying eyes to make her move. Moving quickly but stealthily, she advanced on the back of the wagon, lifted the tarp gingerly and glanced inside. Nestled in with the traveling gear was a strongbox. Flipping it’s latches, she lifted the lid to verify the contents. A grin split her face from ear to ear as she saw the gems and gold contained within.

Sometimes the dice go with you… but sometimes they don’t. In true fashion, having successfully crept up on the dwarves, Nedda’s roll to claim the box without them knowing resulted in a natural 1.

The grin didn’t last long as the cart hit a bump and the lid slipped from her hand, slamming shut on the box. Immediately the dwarves spun around as did the heads of the constructs with them. “Thief!” one of the dwarves yelled, pointing directly at Nedda.

Like a whip, Nedda was off, leaving the heavy box behind as she scrambled away. Behind her, she could hear the construct pounding along the stones after her. Daring a glance back, she could see that while the two dog like creatures pursued her, the dwarves did not dare to leave their cart.

Dashing for a nearby alley, Nedda tried to lose her pursuers in the back streets. Despite her speed, they kept up through every turn, chasing untiringly after her. Just as she started to put a little distance between them, Nedda rounded a corner and smashed into a familiar, barrel chested dragonborne.

Clotor looked down in surprise at the halfling and shouted out, “Nedda!” The panicked look on the halflings face and the heavy clomping of the constructs quickly pulled her out of the surprise greeting as the dogs rounded the nearby corner. The paladin pulled her sword and jabbed it into the metal joints of the first creature. The second, sensing the threat, jumped at Clotor’s exposed flank and bit deep.

The halfling squared off and pulled her weapons, moving in to help Clotor with the battle. The two dogs bit and clawed at the two as they held them at bay. From a side alley, the two heard a familiar set of voices as Harold and Scourage found them and joined the fight. Between the warlord’s leadership and the spells of wizard, the four were able to quickly put down the two constructs and get a breather.

Quickly, Nedda relayed the details of her approaching the Kor’Krons to try and infiltrate their group. Before they could stop her to ask more, Nedda was off and running, trying to catch up with the wagon she had lost just a few minutes before.

After running, she caught up with them just as they were entering the manor districts of the traders and crafters. Slowing her breathing, she methodically worked her way closer, staying in their blind spots as the two dwarves looked for threats. Using a narrow passage as an opportunity to move up, Nedda crouched behind the wagon as it moved. Reaching up under the tarp, Nedda placed both hands on the strong box and then lifted the heavy chest as silently as possible.

Sometimes the dice just aren’t with you, but sometimes they are. This time around, she rolled a natural 20, which seemed like a fitting result after her previous failure.

As she stopped keeping pace with the wagon, it pulled out away from her, the strong box securely in her hands. By the time the dwarves turned to check behind them for any threats, she had disappeared into a nearby alley and was returning to the Kor’Krons with proof of her ability.

Dragging the gold heavy chest back up to the Kor’Kron headquarters, Nedda plops the strong box down on the dwarf’s desk before  he even has a chance to look up and address the visitor.

He sits up, eyes wide in shock for a moment before he regains his composure. “Is this… I mean… of course it is. Well… good job. You don’t mind if I count it… do you… just a minute.”

The dwarf lugs the strongbox to a backroom and returns a few minutes later. “Well I must admit, I didn’t think you had it in you. I’m impressed. Here’s your reward, well earned I think.” From his jacket, the dwarf pulls out a small pouch of coins and tosses it to Nedda. “I think we definitely have some work for you. Return here tonight, I need to make some arrangements for you, but I’ll have some work for you then. Keep up the good work and you’ll keep getting good pay.”

Nedda smiled, bowed her head to the dwarf and then turned and headed out with a wave. Returning to the tavern to meet the rest of the party, Nedda tossed the bag of coins down on the table between with a triumphant smile,

“We’re in.”

PREVIOUS: ACT 2: SESSION 7
NEXT: ACT 2: SESSION 9
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