Waking on the morning of the 20th, the party split, with Vaenaz and Ordel travelling east along the road towards Kerellion, and with the rest of the party travelling south through the woods, avoiding the town entirely and hoping to meet up on the road south.
Vaenaz and Adric walked a day and a half before coming upon Kerellion, which they discovered had been heavily fortified, with a stockade built from all the lumber within a half-mile of the town and a deep ditch. Skirting the fortifications to the south, they assumed a disguise and entered the town under the pretense of meeting with the Mogogue family wizard living in the fort. Vaenaz pulled Ordel into a cellar where he crafted some subtle differences to make them look more harmless, and then they went above ground, where Vaenaz left a small chest with a lamp and oil outside the inn, revealed to be the headquarters of the commander Ortanien.
Vaenaz and Ordel then went to the Mogogue wizard’s house, where they made their way inside against his will, and where Vaenaz was recognized by the wizard who was revealed to be named Briseis, a low-level member of the family.
Vaenaz negotiated with Briseis and seemingly convinced him to defect, bringing all the Mogogue wizards across Derendir to the Black Roost Fortress to protect the queen, if she is there. Briseis seemed to be interested, but informed them that he’d have to consult the family first. Satisfied, Vaenaz grabbed his chest from the inn and left the town, meeting up with the group a day and a half south of Kerellion.
Together, the party continued south before turning off the road to the southwest and encountering the edges of the Nyranean Swamps. Placing all their valuable stuff into Brillon’s waterproof Bag of Holding, they crossed the northern branch of the Sorel River and entered the dismal swamp. They travelled inland for hours before coming upon an open lake, where a spell cast by Voltair briefly revealed the face of a woman beneath the surface.
As they approached, she rose out, looking like a dryad, and told them she was a fey who lived in the area. A quick Divine Sense proved she was lying, and after getting netted by Vaenaz, she admitted that she was an undead fey who had been killed by two Onyx Eye monks, who she then killed. She informed the party that she could only be put to rest if they came down to the lake floor and brought up her body.
Voltair, with his cloak, volunteered, diving into the water and following her deep into the lake. At the bottom, she turned, and attacked Voltair, which he managed to break free of, rocketing back to the surface to warn the party of her treachery. With the assistance of some sharks summoned by Samuel, the party defeated her, and found the Onyx Monks beneath the surface with many other corpses, from which they got two rubies, forty-one gold, and two Onyx robes which Samuel repaired.
Continuing into the swamp for what seemed like days, the party was confronted with a tower on a distant hill, and the sudden approach of two smaller girls. Speaking in unison, they introduced themselves as Sarah and Mary, and invited the party to join their mother for dinner in the tower. After extracting promises of safety, the party went up to the tower, and Vaenaz slipped off to watch from a distance. Inside, the party was introduced to the hag Mother Agatha, who controls the inner swamp.
Voltair negotiated with Mother Agatha, and ended up exchanging the location of Nessarem and safe passage from her in return for the killing of her swamp rival, the black dragon Kurilgund. The deal was sealed with a kiss and blood, and the party settled in around the tower for sleep, planning a trip to the dragon’s lair in the west the next day….
1025xp per character