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Previously on Rime of the Frostmaiden

Valravn, level 3 Eladrin Bard of Eloquence
Fray, level 3 Halfling Barbarian of the Beast
Celeste, level 3 Half-orc Sun Soul Monk
Edmond, Level 3 Human Alchemist Artificer
Thimbleweed, level 3 Gnome Swarmkeeper Ranger

The Marshals rest in Caer-Konig, confident in their plan of luring the thieves to them by blasting their richness and vulnerability throughout the town. What they don’t realize: the thieves aren’t based in the town at all, and they’re escalating their burglary into full-blown kidnapping.

While most of the party camped out at Frozenfar Expeditions, Fray slept at the Northern Light Inn. In the early morning hours she awoke to the sound of crashing and yelling, running to the lobby to find a pair of duergar. Trovus (who had been left tied up and sobering over night) was already gone. One dwarf was carrying one of the sisters, Allie, out the door, while the other had struck a blow against the pan-swinging sister Cory.

When Fray arrived, the duergar enlarged himself and tried to fight her. It didn’t go well for him. He missed every single attack while she connected three times in a row. He tried to flee out the door after a few rounds, but Fray caught up and cut him down, careful to knock him unconscious rather than slay him outright.

She tied him up and dragged him to the Frozenfar Expeditions, waking up the rest of her party. They they woke up Garret and Atenas, who ran to the inn to help Cory (DM note: slightly annoyed none of the party were overly concerned about her; Fray left her bleeding on the floor!).

The party then spent a large chunk of the session interrogating the captured duergar, giving the DM a fun opportunity to tease a much wider plot at stake. Valravn could speak Dwarvish and tried to play Good Cop to the duergar, attempting to use empathy and understanding to reach him. The duergar was in no mood, however, even when Edmond tried offering him a beer with his alchemy jar (and then forcibly pouring it down his throat).

Finally their tactics began to wear on the prisoner — as well as Fray’s more effective intimidation, as she had just recently kicked his ass. The duergar spoke of how everyone here will die in fire, and upon the ashes they’ll build their kingdom. He spoke of a great dragon, a forge, a fortress, and a warlord, Xardarok.

Basically, the Marshals had no idea what they were getting into. Later during Frostside Chat, the players admitted they thought this was a simple, light-hearted, social quest involving doomsday preppers in town — not the beginnings of an invasion from the Underdark!

Rime of the frostmaiden session 10 caer-konig

The most useful information was the location of the forward base the duergar were operating out of. Valravn used Cutting Words and the Suggestion spell to attempt to charm the duergar into leading them and helping them infiltrate. But I rolled a nat 20 thanks to the duergar’s advantage to charm spells, and the spell failed.

Instead he sneered that they could simply follow the tracks (Fray was chasing him in that direction). With that information, Fray satisfyingly executed the duergar, and the party set off toward the outpost.

After about half a mile the duergar tracks turned into sledding tracks, alongside a large humanoid. A successful Survival check identified it as an ogre, though Thimbleweed’s hilarious nat 1 on the Nature check revealed that he had no idea what an Ogre was!

It took them a little longer to find the outpost (just missing the DC 15 Survival check when the tracks begin to disappear), and once again Valravn failed the CON save and suffers exhaustion from the freezing conditions.

The crescent-shaped outpost is a fortress dug into the stone atop a hill, an excellent fortified location, with an overlook and a bunker watching the path leading up.

The Marshals realized the danger in following the path. Thimbleweed quietly stealthed up the side and found a safe way around the back side of the bunker, though there didn’t appear to be a way inside the bunker itself.

The others followed with a group stealth check, making it around the bunker and along the north side of the cliff wall. Another stealth check got them past the overlook on the north side, and over to a frozen stream that ran underneath the fortress, just by the main entrance.

Fray and Thimbleweed squeezed through the tunnel, finding a well that exited up into the main keep. The inside was mostly bare, noting a draw bridge at the entrance, several paths and doors, and three large cages. One of the cages contains a pair of goats, and another an undead ogre, who begins growling at the newcomers!

MVPC – Fray

Post-session live discussion:

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