The party tracked the bullywugs trail to a steading that was still burning. People were there putting out the fires and helping round up livestock that had escaped. The party handed over the child’s body to the grieving parents. Pixin was about to ask if there was a reward but was silenced by the looming, glowering figure of Gauthak.
Leaving the steading behind the party travelled back to Tor’s Hold and informed them the bullywug threat was no more. Tor’s Hold could now release a score of warriors for the resistance and would do so in the next few days. After staying overnight the party returned to Reithann the Druid, and gave her the staff of the Bullywug chieftan. She clapped her hands together with joy, and gave the party some magic armour as a reward. Reithann directed the party to Albridge, and told them to contact Dar Gremath.
In Albridge Dar Gremath, an aging and retired adventurer worked at his stables. The village was openly resistant to The Iron Circle, and Dar Gremath advised them to stay in the Mallard Inn, but not to speak too openly as the Iron Circle often sent spies there. Plus the owner Onneth was good hearted but unable to keep a secret.
Later that night, after the party were fed and lodged, they met Dar Gremath and his lieutenants back at the stables.
“If we’re going to beat the Iron Circle, we’ve got to draw Redthorn, the Iron Circle leader, out of his keep. We need to get him angry. There’s a supply caravan heading out to Easthill tomorrow. You could rob it. Gods, just picking a fight with Iron Circle goons in any tavern in Harkenwold would be a good start!”
The plan was set, and the party set out to attack an Iron Circle supply caravan. They set up an ambush on the road, and attacked. The fight was tough, and the Iron Circle had a spellcaster as well as a metal construct in dog shape called an Iron Defender, but in the end the Iron Circle were defeated. The caravan contained weapons, rope, some magic items and coinage, perhaps pay for Iron Circle troops or maybe bribe money for locals. Either way all the caravan went to the resistance in Albridge.
Pleased with the party’s success, Dar Gremath suggested resting for a few days. He had an idea that the Iron Circle would not be happy with the defeat of their bullywug allies or the caravan robbery. His own information network advised him that there was movement at the keep in Harken Village. Dar Gremath asked the party to swing by the village of Marl, south of Albridge, rile the Iron Circle up by attacking them there – perhaps at the tavern – and then make for the Woodsinger Elves camp in Harken Forest and ask them for aid. If the elves would assist the resistance it would be a great help in the coming battle.
Rested and ready to go, the party headed for Marl. The weather turned bad, and the overcast sky darkened. Rain began to fall, light at first and then heavy. If that wasnt bad enough, a chill fog rose from the land. The road became muddy and slippery. While passing through an abandoned steading which flanked the road, the party spotted a figure through the fog holding a lantern. Further on the road an Iron Circle mercenary was riding a large red lizard. The lizard roared, and an evil looking woman in a red surcoat appeared from some bushes.
“There they are!” she pointed. “Take them!”
This hunting party had obviously been looking for them. Once again battle was joined. The rain and fog and mud made the battle difficult for all, but once again the party were victorious. Pixin was looking particularly pleased with himself after fey-stepping onto the back of the red lizard, behind the rider and kicking him off into the mud. The elf barbarian was then able to plunge his blades in the back of the lizard, piercing its lungs and organs.
After a short rest, and some bandaging of wounds, the party continued to Marl.