Carrion Crown, as told by Victoria van Helm.
Esteemed Witch Hunter Coim,
Our journey through Versex continues. We began the journey from Hyannis to Rosenport, following the Danver river through the mountains. We're being accompanied by the Bard, Jeff, who joined us plans to write an epic about our battle with the ghost, Aggis. He's human, young, and fancies himself quite the musician. Not that I can talk. He comes from a nomadic family of Varisians, which is not usual. He was originally on his way to Thrushmoor anyway.
Along the way, we encountered a strange metallic creature in the midst of a storm; a Gorgon. It's arrival caused the horses of Ronan and Hecathia to buck them off and bolt. The creature's breath was sweeping, and we were turned to stone, save for Lucia -- she managed to hold her breath, and charged forth to engage the beast alone. When I came to, the beast was slain -- sorry to say, I was not of much use in this battle.
The rest of the party departed to find their missing horses; Lucia's mount, Dauntless, was not keen on the idea of carrying another. I remained to harvest the dead beast. Gorgon horn fetches a reasonable price of 250GP, and I've always fancied cooking with Gorgonflesh.
While the party was searching for the missing horses, Hecathia thought to cast a spell of healing on Dauntless. Or she tried, anyway. It keeps splashing, and Dauntless didn't appreciate the attempt at aid. It kicked them off, and they were forced to face it in combat.
I was not privy to the exchange, but understand that there was not only an altercation between the horse and Hecathia, but between Hecathia and Lucia as well -- understandable, given her clear affection for the horse. I did not envy Paladin Ronan's task in keeping them from immediately engaging one another in mortal combat -- an event I am certain would result in the victory of Lucia alone, with Ronan's survival dependant on whether he opposed her or not.
As it was, Ronan returned, riding Dauntless, with Lucia's dead body over the back of his own horse. I guess I'm keeping the Gorgon horns now. What a horrible night for a death. The plan was to resurrect Lucia at the Church in Thrushmoor, so we apply peaceful repose to her body and move on.
We pressed on past Rozenport, and arrived in Thrushmoor without further incident. The weather was typical, a burgeoning storm. The few people that saw us arrive, demon horse and corpse in tow, stayed well out of our way. The only lodgings available at this time are poor.
The barkeep advises against going to the chapel, reckons it's haunted or some such. 60-odd years ago, the church abandoned the old chapter, citing that it was corrupt. The new one has something off, mysterious deaths. Two priests have fallen out of the belltower somehow. Word of a skull-shaped stain that can't be cleaned away.
Sleep that night was hard to come by; the wind howled, and I got to thinking the stories of a curse affecting the town might be true.
The next morning, Hecathia never showed up for breakfast; I paid her a visit, and found the room empty with a departure note. Hecathia's sudden departure comes with her arrangement of a remedy for Lucia, and it's delivered by a strange man in dark robes with undead-feeling lackeys flanking him.
He made his delivery, and left -- I'll be looking into him later. In the meantime, we were more interested in using the mystery potion on Lucia's body; it bought her back, but the cost remains to be seen. Lucia told Ronan something, and that freaked him out enough to pray for a good long time.
While Lucia was recovering, Jeff put his ears to the ground for some rumors; the town of Thrushmoor is not just a little gossipy. When Lucia was sufficiently recovered, we went to the stables to check on Dauntless. There, we learned more of people who sound like our cultists; they were headed to Illmarsh in a hurry, and needed to swap out horses. Illmarsh is due for a festival; the Lanternghast festival, so that might be interesting.
Ronan took the time to invest in Thrushmoor's property market; primarily to store excess belongings, it appears, but also putting out feelers for more information on Hecathia. I feel like his talents are slightly wasted outside of the Inquisition.
As we were helping him housewarm, he had a visitor; a slight, asian woman named Mei, who had intel on Hecathia. She knew her, long ago... she blushed when we asked why. She participated in our toast to Hecathia. She's a drifter, with ranger talents, and crossed paths with Hecathia about 4 and a half years back.
We'll be looking into the matter of the curse on the chapel before we depart this town.
Glory to Pharasma,
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