When we last left the party…
All four of them had gone their separate ways. Nicholas and Vallenese headed back to Zaatir, resulting in the former landing in prison and the latter scattering to the winds. Raltar returned to Edron to study the necessary lessons of ruling the elves. Hawthuum remained in Adra, working his way towards purchasing a boat for the entire group to take south.
After three months in prison Nicholas manages to be released under extensive restrictions, namely that he must perform community service and good behavior. He charts a course on the first boat he can find heading to Ocera, where he meets a half elf named Safphron Saberine who is also traveling to Ocera to taste some of the unique liquor flavors there to bring back to her family brewery. The two of them bond over the voyage, since they’re the only two of three passengers not rendered completely indisposed by seasickness and the crew is much too busy sailing the ship.
When they make landfall Nicholas quickly finds Hawthuum, as the dwarf saw their ship coming into port and came to meet them. The two quickly catch up and Nicholas introduces Hawthuum to Safphron. The dwarf excitedly informs Nicholas that he managed to buy a boat and hire a small crew of three to run them southward.
While they’re talking Hawthuum notices a messenger with a carriage and an image of Nicholas in Raltar’s drawing style. The group demands an explanation, and the messenger reveals that he’s been sent to pick up the three of them from the port and bring them to Raltar’s wedding.
Amazed that Raltar is both now the king and getting married, the group climbs into the carriage and head towards the elven capitol. On the way Nicholas summons Scooter for the first time since the pseudodragon was forced into his pocket dimension due to the warlock’s imprisonment. Safphron, understandably, goes into a panic attack and a very upset Scooter abandons the carriage to get some flight time.
By the time they reach Edron Nicholas and Hawthuum have managed to calm down Safphron. A massive party greets them, complete with Raltar and Lillian swinging down on vines. They catch up amid the fanfare and Raltar gives them a tour of the new clubhouse, also informing a surprised Nicholas that he’s the best man for the wedding.
Later, as Nicholas is giving his best man pre-wedding speech, a farmer brings his murdered daughter through the crowd and a silence falls over the festivities. He demands Raltar do something about his murdered child, and the party follows him back to his house to investigate the scene of the crime while the guard gets the common folks inside. On the way Raltar insults the farmer who takes the body inside without letting the group properly examine it and leaving them just with the crime scene.
After investigating the scene they determine that Scooter was likely the culprit, prompting Nicholas to embark on a desperate search for evidence to the contrary while he’s placed under constant surveillance. The others split to try and gather more information from the town, and Nicholas comes to the realization that the magical aura left on the body that he managed to glance couldn’t have been Scooters despite it looking identical because Scooter doesn’t leave an aura when he bites things. The group quickly returns to the house, only to find apparently no one home.
Proceeding with caution, they enter the house with the captain of the guard and head upstairs upon hearing a snarling noise. Unfortunately Nicholas, Hawthuum, and Safphron aren’t very quiet and the source of the noise flees, leaving the disemboweled body of the farmer from scarcely an hour ago. The captain insists on Raltar being taken back to safety, and the other three party members inspect the remains of the body and the house. Once back to his clubhouse, Ralter realizes that Lillian hasn’t been heard from since the attacks began, and goes to find her after shaking his guards. This prompts a city-wide alert, and the other three party members receive second-hand that “the king is missing”.
Where has Lillian disappeared to? What is slaughtering the people of Edron? Will Raltar’s first royal event end in nothing but royal disaster? Find out next week on Dawn of the Storm!