18 Sarenith, 4713 – Heldren
The party arrives at Councilor Teppin’s home in the morning. She informs the group that the town council is requesting their aid in investigating the strange attack and disappearance of Lady Argentea. She is authorized to offer a reward of 500gp to find the kidnapped noble and return her safely to Heldren. If she is found dead, then the safe return of her remains and her killers brought to justice. The party members all agree to join forces and carry out the request of the council.
Before they depart town they are able to speak to the survivor who identifies himself as Yuln Oerstag. He imparts all he tells the group about the caravan and how they had stopped for the night to rest when they were ambushed and attacked first by brigands and then joined by winter-touched fey creatures. He was struck from behind and knocked out, but before passing out he saw Lady Argentea being dragged off into the woods. When he woke up, the massacre was over and the attackers had mistaken him for dead and left him behind. He decided that all he could do was make his way to Heldren to warn the village which took him the better part of a day with his injuries and frostbite to his feet and hands. He marks on their map where the attack took place.
0800 – The party gathers their final supplies and gear and departs town.
1030 – The PCs arrive upon the scene of the attack. The temperature has dropped significantly and there is a very light dusting of snow on the ground. As they investigate the surroundings they here moaning sounds coming from inside one of the carriages. Opening the door they are attacked by 3 dead warriors, each transformed into a zombie. The group very quickly and easily dispatches them. After the attack, they discover the frozen body of an Ulfen warrior which has been partially dismembered. They thaw out the body and claim his armor and sword as well as finding a hidden jewelry box which has a few of Lady Argentea’s trinkets…and her signet ring. The group finds a path into the woods and follows it.
1050 – The party enters the Border Woods proper and are clearly now within the boundary of a unseasonal snow storm. The snow is not overly heavy but it is constant and accumulating at a steady rate.
1115 – The party comes upon a small clearing of trees. Near the center is a chest which appears to have been dropped by the attackers. The PCs realize this is a trap and they successfully avoid the trap. They find a hidden cache of weapons and armor. They press on
1140 – As the party makes its way up a slow rise, they spot movement to the side of the path in a deep snowdrift which gives them just enough warning to prevent being surprised by a tatzlwyrm. The battle is short and swift and the party prevails. Afterwards the party decides to rest and Aiwendil takes his daily communion with nature and the others eat.
1300 – The party moves out again
1320 – The party comes upon a copse of trees decorated with dead crows. As they study these, they are set upon by some invisible bowmen. Several members are hit by the arrows which cause no damage but seem to inflict extreme cold damage which they successfully shake off the effects. The party runs off into the woods to get away. However in the process, one of the creatures tries to taunt Ingvar by whispering in his ear “Izoze is going to have fun with you.” Ingvar blindly lashes out and actually catches the creature, a winter-touched sprite, in mid flight. He growls at it and then throws it away, showing he has no fear of its threat.
1400 – As the path cuts through a wide clearing, they happen upon a white stag; and it appears as if the creature is talking to itself. When the creature notices the PCs, he starts a conversation with them. He seems friendly and is asks who they are, why they are in the woods. When they mention High Sentinel Lodge, the stag says he too is seeking that and maybe they could help them find it, drawing closer to the group. Vadoma casts deathwatch and determines there is an extra lifeforce nearby. When she warns the group. the stag attacks along with his rider, an invisible winter-touched atomie. The party quickly defeats the stag and Hunter is able to critically hit and kill the evil fey creature. Hunter skins the stag and begins to wear the skin over his attire.
1430 – The party approaches a frozen stream with a snowman near the bank. There is a sign which is written in red paint (or is it blood?) saying “Trespassers turn back now!” As the party starts to draw closer, to inspect, the snowman seems to call out and yells, " Can’t you read? The sign says turn back. Now go away!" When Svala goes up to check the snowman, it suddenly explodes with a sound burst which catches her, Hunter and Ingvar in the effect. The sound of the explosion arouses three small ice elementals hiding in the frozen creek and they burst from the water and attack. The fight is more vigorous than the earlier attacks but after a brief struggle, the PCs eventually defeat the elementals.
1445 – All the PCs make it across the creek. Alabaster makes an especially glorious image as he runs and slides across on his feet (skateboarder style) before hitting the far bank, tripping and face-plants into a snow bank.