This relatively short session was primarily a lot of interaction with various NPCs. Having obtained quite a bit of information about the abandoned monastery last session, the party decided to see what else they could find out from NPCs using their new information as a starting point.
They began with Fr. Valinor in Headwaters. He informed the players that one of the monks (a Dn. Beynar) mentioned in the page fragment they found in the vampire lair was the founder of Headwaters. Specifically, he built the watchtower. Fr. Valinor also knew of the Two Swords. Most likely, they were lost somewhere beneath the monastery; however, they might have been given to the dwarves of the Molting Mountains for safe keeping because, according to the records of the Keep, it was these dwarves who helped build the tower.
The party then went to Alton the Warder who commands the Keep and Tower of Headwaters. He informed the party that, indeed, Dn. Beynar had built the tower. In fact, they still maintained his monastic cell within the tower where he spent the end of his life in fasting and vigil asking forgiveness for his failure to destroy the Well of Chaos. When Alton found out Dn. Goram's intention of not only finding the Two Swords but of restoring the abandoned monastery, he assigned the Keeper Orysus as Dn. Goram's shield bearer. The party then asked if Alton knew of any vampire activity in the area. It was at this point I learned something new about my campaign setting.
When players ask questions of NPCs that I am not expecting, I generally roll a die to see how much that NPC might know about the subject. The more likely that the character might know something, the smaller the die I will use. The lower the result, the more information that NPC has. When asked about vampires, I picked up a d20 and promptly rolled a '1.' I was thus compelled to make something up on the spot. Evidently, when the Thassalonian Empire first set foot on these shores, they found that what one might call the nobility of the local population were vampires.
As a result, when Dn. Goram asked to spend a night in prayer in Dn. Beynar's old monastic cell, Dn. Goram was given a vision. Although the party had successfully freed Fr. Raphel from his fleshly undead prison when they slew the vampire, as long as the vampire who gave him unlife still walked the earth, Fr. Raphel's soul was still bound.
The party then went to Trisagia in order to spend money, train and level up. In process, they found out that Fedorcia, the one-legged prostitute (and now 4th level NPC Thief) still had various contacts in the City, including a good fence. This increased the chances of the party finding some items that might not have otherwise been available. Dn. Goram then sought an audience with Bishop Iova. The old man was very pleased to see his adventuring deacon and was quite moved by the willingness of Dn. Goram to take on such arduous tasks. They went into the reliquary of the cathedral and they proceeded to have a conversation with one of the bishops buried there. It was revealed that some believe that it was through the influence of the Well of Chaos that the Thassalonian Empire fell.
The session ended with a short foray into the abandoned monastery. The party discovered that the main temple once had been dedicated to St. Vineria but had long since been desecrated. They then discovered some catacombs beneath the temple that were crawling with rather powerful undead. We ended the evening with a running fight with some mummies, after which the party headed back to Headwaters.
5 hours ago