Big Trouble in Little Gilm, Part Two
(May 16, 2019)
Earlier in the evening, when the adventurers had first arrived in Gilm and were met by Gomi at Tybil’s Tavern, their quick in-and-out caught the eye of a traveling wizard named Tharius. After taking the time to finish his dinner, he went out into the evening to see what these fellows were up to and, knowing Gomi served Suneel Sarjeetha, made his way out to the estate. There he came upon the sounds of battle drawing to a gruesome conclusion, and hastened to investigate.
Arriving at the garden gate, Tharius saw the aftermath of an epic battle, bodies strewn all over the place, and, standing alone and unvanquished, a panting, blood-soaked half-orc barbarian. Shuni was considering her next move when she was called to by none other than Hanuba himself, standing on the balcony of the manor house just over a hundred feet away. He had been watching and was much impressed by the half-orc’s incredible resilience – so much so that he offered her a job as his bodyguard with a promise of 1,000 gold pieces to start.
As the Chaotic Neutral barbarian considered the offer, Tharius made his entrance, administering a healing potion to Rayden. Hanuba held off on attacking, knowing the druid to be similarly Neutral but the offer of gold fell on deaf ears. When Rayden moved to give the more heroically-inclined Ranger a healing potion, Hanuba, who knew the motivations of each adventurer quite well, had to stop it with an eldritch blast that felled Rayden. At that point, Shuni quickly slipped Scheff a healing potion and Tharius went invisible to do the same to the rest of the fallen comrades.
Hanuba was losing control of the situation as multiple targets starting dividing his attention. He took considerable damage from a hail of thorns attack by Ranger, followed by a devastating scorching ray attack by Tharius, driving him inside the house to set the repaired and re-animated golem on the party. It was to no avail, and even though he had Shuni in his thrall near the end with a crown of madness spell, it was Ranger who struck the killing blow with a well-aimed arrow. With the warlock dead, the golem simply stopped moving.
Finally, Tharius was able to introduce himself and explain how, as a fellow student of the same wizard who trained Darius, he had recognized the other magic-user at Tybil’s Tavern. Tharius followed the party to the manor house and he knew, as soon as he saw the dead gnolls everywhere and his old friend lying dead among them, that anyone who had known and adventured with Darius was worth his help and he unquestioningly came to their aid. If only Hanuba had killed him at first sight, the encounter would have gone very differently.
Inside the house the adventurers found Suneel Sarjeetha bound to a chair, grateful at his rescue but saddened by the news of Gomi’s death. In the next room there was a treasure chest containing Hanuba’s considerable wealth in coins and gems along with the maps he had stolen from them plus another map of the entire Xanthium Sea of such detail and accuracy that it must be worth over a thousand gold pieces in its own right.
At last, the adventurers are back on track with Zabrina’s quest to find the Serpent Staff of Pazugo.