The stench of death and rotting flesh got thicker as we kicked past the corpses of our foes and headed deeper into the underground burial site. Guided by the muffled sounds of conversation, we found our way through the maze of crypts and burst into a small room full of hard-faced bandits, all with bows at the ready. They were clearly guarding something, we must have found the right place.
Battling through the the four archers we broke through the door they were protecting, which opened to a large crypt littered with coffins. At the back stood our quarry. He fit the description, but there was something previously unnoticed in his eyes – a dark otherworldly force. "Who are you to think you can interrupt the work of the "Gloom?" A dark energy engulfed his hands as he spoke. "I will show you what you are dealing with!"
After a prolonged battle with the bandit wizard, in which he unleashed living skeletons and corpses in addition to his archer body guards on us, Krunk was able to finally end the wizard. Sifting through the carnage left by the battle, MOBBB found a cache at the back of the room containing the scrolls we were hired to collect. The team couldn't help but rifle through them a bit, but found that the writing upon them was in some unknown archaic language. One thing that did jump out at us, however, was a map of the northern countryside. A bend in the Still River is clearly marked as a point of interest. Contemplating whether we wanted to find out more about this so-called Gloom, we noted the location having decided that the spot could be a point of interest.
But that could be forgotten for the moment. We packed up the papers and headed back to Gloomhaven to collect our reward. Meeting Jekserah once again at The Sleeping Lion, we handed over the papers and were paid the agreed-upon amount. "You know," she whispered to us softly under the bustle of the tavern. "If you are interested, I may have another job for you. A tribe of Inox in the Dagger Forest have ransacked a couple of my caravans headed to the capital. I told the militia, but they have done nothing," she spits. "I can point you in the direction of their encampment. If you can make an example of them, I will pay you even more." She places a crude map of the forest on the table and stands up, her jewelry clinking with the movement. "Come find me when it is done."
Taking advantage of being back in Gloomhaven we went to the market to purchase additional gear. "Please, something of interest, sirs." The words come through in chitters and hisses from an alley in the Ward of Scales, turning to the noise a Harrower dressed in crude robes and a mask emerged. It held a piece of parchment. "Something for sirs. Very powerful. Just five gold." We could tell the parchment had designs for something on it, but still – we had heard of this Harrower and it was known for trading in disreputable goods. We couldn't tell where the parchment came from, and if anyone saw us dealing with it…well, they might get the wrong idea. Intrigued by the parchment, we quickly make a decision to buy it off the Harrower. The exchange was very quick and we went upon our way, hoping no one saw us. Once on our own we reviewed the parchment and found it held the blue prints for a Dampening Ring which we provided to a local merchant to craft for Gloomhaven's Available items.
Finishing our shopping in Gloomhaven the MOBBB opted to further investigate the Temple of the Eclipse in the Dagger Forest. While traveling we found the route to our destination was less direct than we had hoped, and we ended up taking a shortcut through a small forest. There we happened upon a family of deer. They were still a ways off in the distance and hadn't noticed us. We approached cautiously and opted to watch the deer for a little while instead of shooting one. We were enjoying watching the animals graze when an arrow flew out and hit the largest of the deer in its chest. It bolted away but didn't make it very far before collapsing. Then we saw a large Inox emerge from the brush and turn towards us. "I thought you were going to do something stupid there for a second. Thanks for not scaring away my quarry. Allow me to share some of the spoils with you." After taking a portion the Inox blessed us and we parted ways as we continued to the Dagger Forest…