Current Party: Charlotte, Ethan, Gaiel, Melfiso, Orkzim, Tess
Captain Norton and 9 Soldiers
Professor Rumpf and 5 Students
Captain Anders puts Tess, Melfiso, and an unconscious Orkzim into jail cells for questioning. Tess and Melfiso inform Anders that the town’s water and food have been poisoned and they give him as much information as they can about Tabitha. At first he doesn’t believe them however Ethan arrives at the jail and can corroborate their story. Anders is still somewhat skeptical and decides to turn his attention to racial tensions surrounding the looming war with the dwarves. He tells them that word has already spread around the town about a dwarf being in the well and then ensuing violence toward him. Anders orders his guards to go to the tavern and take two of the dwarves that are staying there into custody for their own protection. Anders agrees to release Tess and Melfiso but insists on keeping Orkzim locked up. They warn him to ensure he is isn’t touched and to keep him separate from any other prisoners. The two of them return to the tavern where Tess, who is exhausted, immediate goes to sleep leaving any further investigation to the rest of the party.
Meanwhile, Charlotte, Ethan, and Gaiel investigate the room that Tabitha was staying in. They do not discover anything of use that would suggest where she was going or who she was.
Melfiso, who is at the bar, notices two of Anders’ guards enter the tavern and begin talking to the barkeep. They have come for the two dwarves that are staying there. There is a bit a scene but the two dwarves do go with the guards. Melfiso heads back to the jail with them to keep an eye on things. He learns the names of the dwarves are Antioch, a trader of forged goods, and Doro.
Against the earlier advice of Tess, and the current protests of Melfiso the guards lock Doro in the same cell as Orkzim, who has now regained consciousness. Doro, who is drunk, takes a drunken swing at Orkzim but fails to do any damage to him.
The next morning the guards and Melfiso find Doro lying dead in the cell with Orkzim acting rather strange and claiming that he had killed him, apparently unable to resist the corruption.
Tess awakens and begins searching for the party and getting caught up on what has transpired. She has several conversations with the party and everyone seems to be divided on what they should do.
Captain Norton believes that there is little that can be done for the town, and that protecting the party should be the top priority, and while the party does agree with him they do so with a heavy heart.
Rumpf offers two alternative solutions, the first being that they do go after the Nander Root and accept the fact they can’t save everyone but that path would save the most people. The other option would be Tess’ initial plan to set up a sort of triage using the parties divine magic users to heal as many as they could.
The party is heavily leaning toward leaving the village to its fate but decides to gather a little more information. Clia is not happy with the party’s apparent decision and tells them that he will go after the root on his own. Ethan convinces him to hold off to see if they can get him some of the seeds.
Ethan heads to the apothecary to learn more about the Nander Root and possible acquire some seeds so that they might be able to use his abilities to grow a lot of the root quickly. He learns that Nander Root is grown from simple Yam seeds under the influence of the Magic Conflux which is what makes them difficult to acquire. She does sell Ethan some of the seeds.
The rest of the party head back to the jail to free Orkzim, not wanting to leave him behind. When they arrive, they see Doro in the process of crushing a woman’s airpipe and spring into action. They quickly dispatch him and learn that he was in some state of undeath. Tess heals the woman and then proceeds in the jail cells to speak with Orkzim. He tells her that he thinks he can resist the corruption but they should take all precautions and keep him bound until they can figure something out. Tess turns to Antioch and uses some persuasive measures to finally talk him into hearing her out.
Tess asks Charlie to pick the locks on the jail cells while she went to talk to Anders. She asks Anders if she could take the dwarves and the rest of those traveling with her and leave the city. The captain tells her that he believes her about the poison and that he wants her to help cure the people of the poison. Tess tells him that while she and others in the party can cure some of the people they just can’t cure enough of them to make much of a difference. After some back and forth, Ethan joins them and echoes what Tess was saying. Eventually Ander’s agrees to let them all go, just before leaving Tess reaches out to shake his hand, in doing so she uses her magic to cure him of the poison.
The party heads back to the tavern to gather their forces and supplies and prepare to leave the Obril. On the way Tess stops back at the well, emotionally torn and on the edge of breaking down. She kneels before the well and prays with everything she has for Orin to somehow intervene or give her the strength to make the right choice. It is right then Rumpf approaches her.
“If we leave, they all die. 0%. If we stay and cure as many as we can, we save 20 to 30 at best. 25%. If we go after the Nander Root we save those who are strong enough to hold out, about 50%.”
It is in that moment that Tess realizes that she must save as many as she can even that involves walking right into a trap. With a sudden burst of anger and determination she storms up to Clia and tells him that she will accompany him to the Conflux even if no one else will. The rest of the party agrees to join her.
Before they leave Ethan and Tess use their magic to purify as much food and water as they are able. They decide to leave the soldiers behind to assist the town guard in keeping the peace. Seeing as they must be quick they decide to leave the students behind. They procure giant beetles which will cut down on their travel time.
As the party is leaving the town Tess spots a young half-elf girl, her emotions well up and she knows that she needs to try and safe one more life before embarking on what may be her last mission. She cures the young girl before heading out of town.
The party speeds along on their beetles, and they encounter a news courier who informs them that war has broken out. The dwarves have launched their attack. The party shares the information about the village of Obril in exchange.
While on the road Tess notices something about Gaiel, she has been acting unusual (for her) for the past couple of days. Other party members have voiced this to her as well. Gaiel seems to be focused and alert and not becoming distracted by mundane things. Tess talks to her, and asks if this is the same person she met before. Gaiel doesn’t answer.
Tess: Do I need to be concerned or worried about you hurting me?
Gaiel: Are you going to hurt me?
Tess: No, I told you that I will protect you from any who seek to harm you.
Gaiel: Then you have nothing to worry about.
The party travels a little while longer before they finally reach the Conflux, which lies on one of the new growth branches of The World Tree. While camping, they are caught up in a Aurioch stampede. Most of the party is able to escape harm, though Clia does get himself hurt quite seriously. After the stampede passes Tess notices an extremely large camouflaged cat like creature that had been chasing the stampede…