Based on the Three Rings (A Four Against Darkness module)
Previously, our heroes had explored the north woods, found the skull cave, and retrieved the first ring from the orc reavers. They retraced their steps to the crossroad and are now investigating the east woods.
They had not gone far (1) when they heard a rustling in the undergrowth. An abomination, half-snake and half-man rushed out and attacked Khamen. It sank its fangs into him; Khamen managed to wrench free before it could inject its poison into him. Candorra and Rikk the Ranger leaped to his aid, each slashing the beast. It kept after Khamen but he ducked and dodged from the deadly maw. Again, Candorra and Rikk struck, and the monstrosity collapsed dead.
A little further along the path (2), our heroes encountered a pack of 4 wolves. The creatures attacked; one grasping Candorra's leg. She brought her sword down, striking it dead. Khamen managed to dodge and slay his attacker. Rikk was unable to get an arrow off before the wolves were on him. He drew his heavy sax and began to slash madly. Two wolves fell to his sturdy blade.
The path began to wind around. As they approached a curve, they could hear singing coming from ahead. From around the bend appeared a very jolly halfling. He stopped and conversed with the trio. He warned them of dangerous wolves inhabiting the forest.
"Well, that's helpful." Khamen whispered under his breath. Candorra kicked his shin and scowled at him. The halfling seemed not to notice. Unfortunately, he did not have any knowledge of the orc reavers. Our party had no choice but to push on into the wilderness.
Later, they had a similar encounter with a traveling merchant and his armed guards. None of them had any knowledge of the orcs.
As the sun slowly sank to their backs, the party startled a beautiful bird with golden and purple plumage. Khamen immediately recognized the commercial potential of the bird's feathers and he drew back his dagger to throw at the creature. But Candorra grabbed his arm, and the bird flew off.
"What did you do that for?" Khamen snarled.
"That's a forest phoenix; very rare. Best to preserve it for all to enjoy rather than slay it for your personal gain."
Khamen shrugged. She was probably right, but oh the coin it could have brought them!
As they wound through the forest, Rikk spotted a faint track that led to a copse of trees.
"Orc tracks!" he noted.
Peering into the copse, Rikk saw a path cleared out.
"It appears to be a lair!" he declared. "I'll bet we'll find some reavers here!"
What will the find in the lair? Find out next time!