Campaign Logs

The Jade Letters

By Beth Griese

Date:   November 11, 1995


Bearded fellow

Supreme Being

Jim Leitzel


Blonde human

Tempus Cleric

Brian Smith

B'rinth L'rea

Gold Elf


Vaughan Herron


Gypsy woman


Beth Griese

Nory Gnome Illusionist/Thief Stu Collins


1/2 Elf, Scruffy Beard


Jim Gaynor

Verence Gallow Thin human Mystra Cleric Kent Jenkins

Quote of the Day:
"I'll start a fire at the bottom of my tree to keep it away!" - Stu Collins
"You're role-playing that intelligence, aren't you?" -- Kent Jenkins

To Garen Thundersson, cleric of Mielikki. From your faithful servant, Jade.

When our group made it back to Arabel, we found lodging at the Murdered Manticore again - but at a high price this time. King Azoun was scheduled to come to town, and every room was in demand. The innkeeper did us a favor by even giving us beds, although the width we had to stretch our purses for it didn't feel so favorable at the time. We scattered into the city to our own devices. I think everyone was glad for the chance to take a break from adventuring, learn new skills from people of our own professions and, in some cases, get a break from each other.

I saw Telaran many mornings and evenings at the Red Raven Mercenary Company; like me, he went back to that band for training. I sought out Brion for more lessons in the countryside around Arabel. We spent a few weeks crossing every tree and tracking every beast in the area; it felt good to learn Arabel as I'd known Eveningstar. We even got the first glimpses of King Azoun when he came into town. His rangers watched us as we watched him approach the city, with a huge train of servants, soldiers, retainers, and nobles. It was better than a circus, and almost as impressive.

Business eventually took Brion elsewhere, and I was left to myself in the city. Borreau was still spending nearly every waking hour with the temple of Tempus, and most of the rest of the party was coming and going at all hours. I spent a great deal of time with Trellant, learning some of the tricks of riding a horse in the ways that were best for it, and not falling off when it does something unexpected. There were public riding grounds in the city with many people eager to offer opinions and advice. While their suggestions for me were less than generous many times, almost all agreed that Trellant is a fine steed.

I spent my adventuring wages on one new item while I was in town. I visited the Exotica shop again to talk with them about magic; specifically, poisons and spells that make you fall asleep. It was also the subject of many a discussion with Brion. While Brion gave excellent advice, the Exotica had something a bit more tangible to offer. They sold me a leather bracer with beautiful silver runes in it that now never leaves my right arm. It offers immunity to unwilling sleep as if I were a half-elf. Considering that Telaran also succumbed to the same spell that felled me the last time, I realize this isn't a complete protection against such nefarious magic, but I feel a great deal more confident now for future adventures.

But before I could go off on more trips with this company, there was another thing I needed to see to; I needed to come back home. I missed Eveningstar and our home terribly, and I wanted to see if you might finally have returned. So, I brought this up one night after about a month in Arabel, when the entire party had managed to gather around a dinner table. To be honest, I had specifically waited so long because I had hoped that Borreau would be willing to travel with me. He is, after all, the other Eveningstar native in our party. To my surprise, though, the entire group immediately volunteered to come along. I was touched that they would be willing to follow along to such a little town as Eveningstar just for the sake of keeping the party together - and getting some time on the road again.

The trip to Eveningstar, as it turned out, was uneventful. The others found beds at the inn at a good deal cheaper price than we had been paying in Arabel, and Borreau visited home with me. I knew the moment I saw the repaired roof and the stacked wood that you had returned, which made it doubly difficult to come in and find only your note. You had come and gone, and I had not been here when you returned. I have to admit I spent half the evening in guilty tidying of the house as if that could make up for it.

I don't believe even you are owed all the details of that night, Master, but it is in your right to know that Borreau did not go back to the inn for the night. I suppose I finally understand why you had always encouraged me to spend more evenings relaxing in the taverns, although I can't imagine that I ever would have found Borreau by singing along with bardsongs and swigging ale. I hardly slept at all that night, and it was not because of the company in my bed (or, at least not entirely). If only your note had said one word about whether I should stay here or continue to go! You gave me no hint, and I was trapped between my desires, my duties, and my guilt. By morning's light, though, I had settled on what I pray Mielikki is the right decision, and the one you would approve of. While you battle in Thay and my friends follow their destinies, I can't settle with keeping our spits full of roasting game when you're not even here to eat it. I have left all my logs in the house in case you return early, and I have begun keeping careful track of the days until MidWinter's Day, when I will meet with you here again. At least this time, I have a day I know you will be back, or at least close to it.

Borreau and I suffered a good deal of less-than-delicate taunting from the rest of The Wayfarers when we returned to the inn in the morning. Nory was the loudest, of course, but the looks from B'rinth were the ones that made my ears burn the worst. How do those damned elves manage to express so much without a single word? I was glad to busy myself with saddling and riding back to Arabel again. It was on our return trip that we suffered a repeat of the last journey; another manticore attack, in nearly the same place as last time. Our party fared better this time, though, and glad for the action, I managed to bury two arrows deep in its chest and fell it before it had a chance to do much serious damage to anyone.

So, with our return to Arabel, we visited the job board again to see what people were hiring for. We saw one posting for a need that Borreau had told us of; the priesthood of Tempus was looking for companies to travel to Anauroch, where, it seemed, hordes of undead were trying to mass into an army. Most of us were intrigued by the prospect, but we were also anxious for action after such a long time of rest, so we settled first for a job that looked less impressive, but was closer, and appealed to me greatly. A small village south of Eveningstar called Raven's Gap needed hunters. It offered 750gp for the destruction of some unnamed beast.

The irony of this was that we had to travel back to Eveningstar again. We took a skiff from there to this village, nestled in the midst of the forests and unaccessible by road. The townsfolk there, and an elder named Johan, told us what we needed to know; a monstrous beast was making the forests unsafe for their village. They couldn't even be sure what it was, but when we found the tracks, it told us enough. The prints looked like those of a bear, but it would be a bear who stood taller than a man even when on all fours. We followed the tracks for an entire day, but got no closer to finding the beast. We made a camp up in the trees to try to keep ourselves as safe as possible during the night.

It was during my watch that the creature found us. Verence and I were on watch, which mostly involved staring at each other across trees to make sure we stayed awake, when the beast, by Silvanus' leaf, appeared from nowhere to strike Verence's tree at a headlong rush that snapped the trunk in half and brought the whole tree crashing down on the poor cleric.

I didn't spend much time thinking, which I know you would say would be my most common problem. I dove straight out of the tree to attack this thing. It was exactly as its prints suggested; a more massive bear than nature has ever produced by itself, except that the tracks couldn't tell us that this thing was fast as lightning, surrounded by silence, and able to disappear from sight. As the others also awoke and dropped down, the bear tried to turn tail and run.

Some of rest of the party stayed to care for Verence and bring him back from the death he was flirting with under the tree. I took off after the bear, and Telaran followed close behind. The bear took a strange, jinking path, which I tried to emulate out of instinct, and Telaran must have managed to do the same. It tried, next, to drop from sight again, but now Telaran's elf-vision foiled that. Finally, it gave up on its flight and turned to face us head-on; the bear and I fought in the strangest battle of absolute silence I've dealt with. It was almost like a dream, to fight a bear as I've done before, except that the bear was nine feet tall and the entire fight took place without a sound. Telaran joined the fray, and we managed to bring the bear to its death frenzy; thank the stars, in a direction away from us.

When we went back to the others, we found the reason for the bear's strange path; huge jaw traps had littered the forest we had travelled through, and Borreau had been caught in one of them, his leg nearly severed. Nory and B'rinth had already managed to free Borreau and everyone was now out of the danger of the hells, but none of us were inclined to try to track the bear's final path tonight. Verence was still pale and aching, Borreau's leg had stopped bleeding but was still nearly useless, and my back was as open as raw meat from the bear's claws. We have decided to make our best try to camp safely until we're all in one piece again before we finish our business with the bear and the town that it was terrorizing.

Your faithful servant,


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