Knocking the dust off, the three new comrades regroup with the rest of the escaped prisoners. They begin discussing their next move when they realize Carl has left without them noticing. In fact, a lot of them are looking to get away from what is left of the camp and head home. Little Timmy tells the group that he must return to his tribe.
Sophia knows of a town about a day’s walk south of where their at. They head for the road, but they decide to keep their distance. Qiandai even had the idea to cover themselves with mud for camouflage. They keep the road in eye shoot, but their efforts to stay hidden fail. They are immediately seen by the first person they see traveling the road.
The human is decked out in armor and is carrying multiple weapons. Sophia is cautious when he calls them out. He introduces himself as Lou Dromat, an adventurer who has recently found himself without a party. He says he heard the commotion in the valley thought he would check it out. The others fill him and agree that he can join them if he would like (though Sophia is still distrusting.)
The now four person party enters the small town. It can barely even be called a town or even a village. There are almost no shops, only a small inn with few rooms, and only a small Follower church. It doesn’t even have a name. But there are people. Mostly farmers who work the land around the town, and a few other smiths and tradesmen.
The party enters the town. Lou sits down to poker game held by some of the locals while Qiandai talks to the innkeeper about using her property to put on a show. They each rent a room out in the inn. Except Sophia who is refused service. By the end of the night Lou and Qiandai were able to make a little bit of money.
The next day the first thing Volker warns the nearby church of the immediate threat of a kobold army just miles away, much to the thanks of the priest. After that the group decides to head. Sophia, not having slept much, picked up a dire wolf trail outside of town. Some of the town’s people had mentioned how they had become a nuisance recently, and the four friends decided it was a good idea to hunt them down. It would help the town and the pelts could fetch a hefty price in the city.
They follow the trail through a small canyon when the ground beneath their feet begins to shake. In the distance a large humanoid figure with antlers emerges from the fog. With each step it takes an earthquake thunders through the valley. They run for shelter.
All four make a beeline for a cave on the wall of the canyon. They watch the giant creature lumber, kicking clouds of dust with each step. They can see it clearly now. It’s wearing armor, and looks like a large human except for the fifteen foot tall deer antlers sticking out of its temples.
The thing sets down its war hammer, rattling the rocks in walls around the party. It sits down with thud and exhales a deep, long sigh like a typhoon. Volker reaches out with his mind and breaks into a cold sweat when he gets a feel for its magical presence. This creature was magic.
Squinting, like it’s hard of seeing, it looked directly at the party, unsettling them. He greeted the party as if he knew them. He went on about being wrong about something.
Volker approached. He asked the giant man what he meant about being wrong, but when the others when two of the others exited the cave the giant man became confused. After both parties realized neither of them knew each other, the giant introduced himself as Archon. When asked what he was his answer was also Archon.
Archon clarified that he was supposed to rendezvous with an angel at this time. They were to exchange information they had gathered about dragons in the area. The fact that they were even on this planet disturbed Archon, but the most troublesome fact was that the angel he was supposed to meet here did not show up. Archon said the most likely possibility was he was dead, which also meant the dragons knew they were scouting this area.
The group asked what they could do to help. Archon looked down at them like he had forgotten they were there. He told them that he shouldn’t have said what he had. Qiandai said that know that they knew couldn’t just pretend like they didn’t. Archon agreed.
Volker asked if he could give them anything that might aid their quest. Archon reached into his knapsack and pulled out what would have been a scroll had it not been forty feet long. The party got nervous when Archon looked to drop it on them, but when he let go it looked like it hung in the air. In reality, it was shrinking as it fell. Volker reached out and grabbed it. It was blank, but it was drenched in magical energy.
With a final parting word Archon left, ascending into the sky in a beam of light.
The party decided then and there to take up the quest. As Qiandai said, they wouldn’t be able to ignore it. The wolf trail was taking them in the direction of a large city anyway. They decided to start there.
After a only short while more of tracking they found the pack of dire wolf. The pack was resting, and the party gathered around to come up with a plan of attack.