That look in Culdock’s eyes is telling everyone that he could not be happier.
Be that as it may, there remains a bronze dragon swimming around in the ocean just west of Deepwater Harbor. The Grey Hands have sent you another notice that includes the personal signature of Vajra Safahr — The Black Staff.
You don’t have to travel to the Black Staff Tower but Lauris starts to sweat.
By the time we all get into Troskull Manor, we light candles and lanterns as the daylight is winding down. We notice that as Culdock walks around the building, whenever he gets close to a light, the light is extinguished.
Geth meets the urchins over by Frewn’s Brews and runs by the job. He remarks on Nat’s behavior of always seeming like he is hiding something on his side. Nat says that it is not any of his business, and Geth apologizes and they go on their way.
Back at the manor house, the group sets a watch and goes to rest. During the middle watch, Jarry hears the sound of some paper rustling by the front door. Jarry pulls out the Nimblewright Detector and it remains motionless when turned on. He investigates the sound and finds a note addressed to Lauris. He hands it to Geth at the turn of the watch and Geth says that we will give it to Lauris in the morning and sets it on the bar.
Lief prepares a simple meal with drink for us in the morning. It is from Vajra Safahr, the Blackstaff, and Lauris opens it very dramatically. The note requests his presence at Blackstaff Tower regarding a bronze dragon in Deepwater Harbor.
We set out on foot to the Blackstaff Tower. Most of the party sees that there are still plenty of posters from the City Watch seeking information on the Zenterem. Geth is apparently looking at cats.
When we arrive at the Blackstaff Tower, Lauris mentions that he had been summoned by Varja and the group are escorted into a antechamber with refreshments on a table and are told to wait there for Varja. Geth and Lauris partake of the refreshments not entirely gracefully.
After a short while, Varja enters. She explains that a young bronze dragon has taken up residence in the waters just beyond the borders of Deepwater Harbor, just to the west of Stormhaven Island. It has not harmed anything, but has startled some sailors. The Force Gray will provide transportation and the relevant credentials for passage to the island, and magic potions to breathe water in order to approach the dragon.
Lauris asks if anyone else has investigated the dragon. Varja explains that an ancient group of merfolk called Tharqualnaar inhabiting the harbor would surely have gotten to the bottom of the matter if the dragon had entered their territory but that they do not stray more than a quarter mile beyond the harbor’s boundaries. Lauris asks what is required of the task, and Vajra says that they simply want to know what the dragon is doing out there, and that if we find anything, we are welcome to keep it, and do not overstay our welcome on Stormhaven Island. She gives us a map of our route and sends us on our way.
We arrive at the dockmaster and begin speaking to him. The docks extend many feet above the water, stretching out to receive large boats. We are directed to a skiff and speak to the captain, load on, and Geth playfully slaps Culdock on the shoulder and tells the dwarf, skittish around water, that we are here for him. The captain says that with the wind at our backs, he can get us out of the harbor in four or five hours. He shows us where to sit, and shows us the cabin and the privy and the location of some rations. The crew is six strong including the captain.
Caela has a difficult time adjusting to the sea and tosses her cookies over the side of the vessel. In the next hour, Culdock finds himself blowing chunks, and the rest in turn except Jarry, who appears to be an old salt dog himself. By the time we get to the edge of the harbor, each one of us is green around the gills, especially Geth, who is actively observing overboard, mostly at merfolk laughing at him.
Near the island, we see a series of rings and hooks that the ship can hook on to to steady itself.
The captain explains that they are charged to take us to the outside of the island but that their vessel will not weather the open sea. He explains that the plan is to tether the ship to the sea wall and skirt it to the far side of the island. With Caela still seasick, we reach the far side of the island and encounter some humans dressed in light armor and armed with shortswords. They ask what we are doing here, and Lauris presents them with the paperwork Varja gave them and they joke with us, handing us a bundle of camping equipment, that by its design can be used to float.
Lauris bundles his things up and goes out about halfway into the surf until it gets to the point where he has to begin to float. He, and the others around him, begin to notice him drift in the current. Lauris attempts to get back on course but does not get there. After a minute or so, he comes to a point where he can touch the bottom, then heads onto land, a mound of large rock.
The remaining group members, save Culdock, grab the camping floatie and walk towards the surf. Jarry is able to hold on and float while Caela and Geth walk it out. At about halfway across, Caela is having a hard time keeping her feet on the sandy bottom. We pivot along the rock that Lauris stands on, pulled by the current, and begin to move around the island. Geth and Caela have a good sense that the current is taking them between the two islands. Caela tells the others to kick towards the second island and before we know it, we are on the second island.
Lauris comes down from the center island to a spot in the water, sets his makeshift floatation device in the water and sets out to sea. Moving quickly, he attempts to swim back to the island he came from and ends up circling out around the second island where Caela and the others are standing. The others observe him float around the bend of the island and out of sight. Unbeknownst to the rest of the party, Lauris comes right up to the shore on the other side of the island. Out in the water, Lauris can see a wrecked ship moored out in the sea.
Caela climbs to the top of the rock. She sees Lauris on the other side, getting his things untangled, and also sees what appears to be part of a ship under the water. She congratulates Lauris for not dying, and Lauris attempts to disguise his light trauma.
Gems (page 45 blast)
3 paintings worth 75gp each