Carrion Crown, as told by Inquisitor Victoria van Helm.
Esteemed Witch Hunter Coim,
We finished searching the cult, and found they were pretty well off -- far too wealthy given the plight of the local people. I suspect they're being bankrolled by these "Neighbors".
As we finished cleaning up the temple and left, a well-to-do coach rolled into town, pulled by a quartet of horses. It appears that Lucia has a paramour who has followed her here, and this will hold her attention for the day or so.
We report the outcome of our inquisiting to the Mayor, who wanted us to permanently remove the cultists from his town and life in general; for some reason, Hecathia decides to tell him we resolved the solution diplomatically, to his horror. I decide to roll with the lie for a bit.
I ask if he knows where the "Stones" are -- that's where the Father took the child to. He thinks of the Rock -- I understand, but it's not the answer I'm really looking for.
Before we arrived in town, there was a drifter who got sentenced to the Rock for killing a man while drunk, over a card game; I doubt it's related to the cult, it seems like a relatively mundane murder, but duly noted.
The Mayor knows the pair we found in the Temple -- Rufus and his wife Emelba. Hecathia wants to go ask them questions.
For some reason, Hecathia and Ronan see fit to pressure the Mayor into a corner; I'm not exactly sure what purpose this has served, but by the time I give up and leave the conversation, the Mayor's spirits are pretty low, and he's imbibing some.
During the day, I help Ronan, the town's Sheriff, figure out a deputy. The only potential candidates are the local shipbuilder (who is also ancient and busy as hell) and the apothecary.
Hecathia goes to ask Rufus and Emelba where they think the stones might be, and gets "directions".
We are heading out to where the stones are when we spot lights in the distance in the swamp; we scoot closer under stealth, and encounter an unusual fog.
Amidst the fog are humanoids -- they hail us, and Hecathia responds, claiming to only be with her "Bodyguard". She approaches a ring of small campfires, and the humanoids within. She exchanges a few words with them, but I'm more concerned that there's something out there stalking me.
I'm suddenly attacked by something from behind; It's twice as big as me, a hunched-over creature, and must be some form of Swamp Witch. It mangles me.
The two humanoids morph into more swamp witches, and the battle is joined; it's touch-and-go, but Ronan earns his keep, and carries the bulk of the battle.
Returning to the road, we find a lake; we see some bubbles briefly emerge from the middle of the lake, and decide to go swimming to see what it is.
At the bottom of the lake was a cart, buried in mud. It didn't just get here and sink, it must have been here for a long time, or somehow buried itself instantly.
We start to surface, but there's something on the lake where we went in; something big and invisible. We surface on the opposite side and the creature realizes it's been noticed, and enters the lake, towards us.
Time to run.
Glory to Pharasma,