Brom sat in the large throne chair, one leg slung over the arm, talking quietly with the Shaman, Khavra, while their chieftain slept off a hangover. A squad of Orcs entered and one stepped forward to give his report. Brom signaled him to speak, but continued his conversation with Khavra.
“Can we hunt them now?” asked Carac, his nose ring quivering in anticipation.
“They’re where?” Brom turned his attention from the shaman to the Orc sergeant.
“Up a tree, Brom. They chucked some ice off the Wizard tower then ran away and climbed a tree.” The Orc adjusted his grip on his axe. Perhaps now he’d be allowed to remove these human pests.
“All of them?” Brom sat forward, elbow on knee, his thick brow furrowed in thought.
“Not the girl. She’s not with them.”
Brom’s eyes flicked to the shaman, then back to the Orc. “Bring them.”
The party realized they wouldn’t find Alinor while up a tree, at least, not up this tree. They set out but soon heard foot-stomps alerting them to several Orcs headed their way. Telling themselves that hiding was prudent, Zada, Fractal and Larisa stepped off the path while Davrish wondered if perhaps he shouldn’t have paid more attention to the game of Hide and Seek as a child.
A large Orc with a ring through his nose confronted the erstwhile Paladin, telling him that Brom wanted to know if the ghosts had been dealt with. Rather than trying to convince the Orcs that finding Alinor was more important, they fled, concealing themselves with one of Fractal’s spells.
Their expeditious retreat brought them to the plateau where the Abbey proper sat, no longer in splendor. Zada and Davrish took advantage of the silver and platinum ornaments still encrusting the marble to fill pouches with the dust. Larisa, disappointed that the gems had already been pried from statues on the building, spent a few minutes to cast a fortune. When the cards alerted her to a commotion in the woods below, Zada confirmed that their friend, Alinor, was indeed the center of the clockwork dragon’s attention, and in need of their help.
Scrambling down quickly, they discovered a clearing with three enormous beasts surrounding Tabra Marto. One of the beasts was slain and they saw Alinor stuck in a precarious perch in a tree. Zada used the Key card to rescue her, while Davrish boldly chose to smite the Hell Hounds.
Once the battle finished, Alinor started searching the bushes for signs of a large rabbit she had seen. The boot prints from the rabbit disappeared and they determined it must have gone through some sort of dimensional door. According to Tabra, the rabbit was a prince named Brambleson whose whiskers twitched whenever he had a good hand in poker.
They decided to go see Brom, before he sent out another search party. As a show of good faith, or perhaps to assure their safe passage out of the Keep, the group presented him with a Hell Hound pelt. Even rent in two, it would make a fine cloak. Brom told the group that their presence at the next night’s celebration was required, either to toast a job well done, or to provide entertainment in the Pit.
With the heat of the day receding, they set out to find someplace safe to spend the night, and to decide just how to vanquish the ghost in the Garrison.