The Jewel of Smokara

Tomb Raider

They awoke to find the same thing – a pressed white linen stationary with an embossed crest of a griffin head in a crisp black ink.  The letters 'OM' woven into the crest. 'Fox and Thistle  4:30' hand written in perfect penmanship.

Trevor Sayre – the youngest child of Bernard from house Sayre – knew this establishment well.  It was known through out the city of Albuxa as being an inn catering to the well established merchants of the city.  It was a notorious place for making deals.

Both Luther and Marx, being suspicious of both the invitation and their proposal from the day before, decided to arrive early and scope the inn out before entering.  Though trying to be stealthy, Marx notices Luther and they both decide to enter the establishment together. Aang has similar thoughts and decides to watch the building from the center of the market plaza.  Trevor arrives earliy for the meeting and sits at a table with a good view of the door.

Once inside, the motley crew realizes that they recieved a similar summons – Luther, Marx, Aang, Trevor and Bex.  

"He'll see you now" an Elven female approaches the group and ushers them to a room down a hallway and back behind the bar.  Bex and the woman exchange a few thinly veiled jabs as they are led to a small room with a large wooden table and a spread of food.  Trevor and Bex both take no time to sit and eat while Marx and Luther still remain cautious.  Aang stands and the door and awaits their guest.

Within a few moments a man enters the room – tall and slight with dark features and chin-length dark hair.  Behind him, a short young woman with an unfortunate scar under her eye and a permanent scowl.  The group recognizes him as the merchant Osmond Riddle – the mysterious man who approached them a few days earlier contracting them for a job.

After encouraging everyone to sit and enjoy the spread laid before them, he begins to tell the group of the long forgotten temple sitting below the city and the brief history of the Cult of Orcus. Unfortunately, over the past few days the temple had become unsealed and the evil contained inside threatened to spill out into the city once more.  Having a vested interest in the wellbeing of the trade city, Osmond asks for the groups help in securing the temple.

Trevor gladly agrees to smite all the evil, seeing this as a way to get his feet wet. Bex scoffs and banters shortly with both Osmond and the young woman. They eventually agree and Osmond offers to purchase any interesting relics or artifacts found inside the temple.  It had been sealed for centuries with unknown treasures lying within the walls.

After the meeting, Aang addresses the young woman as Bryn, and tried to engage in conversation with her.  She has no interest in talking. While exiting the room- they agree to rest for the evening before heading out to find the temple the next morning.  To prepare for the trip, many begin shopping for rations and potions, Marx agrees to make healing salves at cost – undercutting the price of the vendors. Trevor goes to speak to his family to get more information on the temple and see if his more experienced siblings have anything to combat undead. Aang offers to buy the group rooms at the inn he is staying – the Ram's Horn.  All agree except Marx – he returns the room for a refund and goes to sleep in a tree in a nearby patch of woods.

The next morning, Aang awakes to a letter written on the same stationary.  'Seawolf.  Right Left Right Left Left.' 

Everyone meets for breakfast and Trevor shares his knowledge about the Cult and stresses how grave the situation could be if this evil escaped. Aang shares the note that he recieved and goes to ask Copperbeard some questions if 'Seawolf' means anything to him.  He learns that a boat with the same name just docked this morning.  The Ram's Horn being a popular stop for tradesman and sailors, he is familiar with several of the shipping schedules.

The group goes to find the ship and tries to decipher what the rest of the note means.  Once at the pier Copperbeard told them to look at, the group begins to look at the docked ships, searching for the one named 'Seawolf'.  Aang is distracted by what appears to be a tunnel under the ramp to the dock and dashes off – following the directions on the card. 

Trevor is torn with whether to follow, but instead stays with Luther, Marx, and Bex while they continue to search for the ship.  The eventually find the Seawolf and see nothing out of the ordinary – just some exceptionally strong sailors and crates full of fruits and tropical exports.  Satisfied with the assessment the run to follow Aang.  Trevor then remembers the network of tunnels under the market – as a child he was always warned against going near them.  When the Cult was at its rise, these tunnels were how they traveled through the city unnoticed.

Aang finds the temple first – two large fire-washed metal door with a relief of the symbol of Orcus.  Trevor notices the shattered handles and makes the assessment that something large and powerful tried to attack the door.  Outside the doors Marx spots patches of dried blood that look to be left within the past week.

While investigating, Aang and Trevor notice the temple has been warded against evil – the ward does not appear to be broken.  Bex immediately brings the intentions of Osmond Riddle into question.  While they discuss the situation, noises can be heard from inside the temple.  Cautiously they enter the temple to find a mangled corpse in the corner of the antechamber – eviscerated and eyes scorched.   After some investigation, it appears the sconces on the wall are trapped.

They follow the trail to the next room into what appears to be a worship hall – large 20ft ceilings with murals of deplorable acts, devils and demons.  In the corner of the room, wolf skeleton gnawing on parts of the corpse from the other room. The wolf is no match for the group, though, is obliterated .



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