This is the adventuring journal of Timoura Silverstrings, Bard and Harper, as we make our way through the sixth season of the Dungeons & Dragons Adventurers League: Tales From the Yawning Portal. Reading beyond this point may result in spoilers if you are playing or plan to play through this adventure.
PROCEED WITH CAUTION!
Once we were rested, we went out afresh in search of Erxidar. Imagine our surprise when we found her none too far away — screaming, of course, but at least we found her! She was surrounded by strange, twig-like creatures and, upon their defeat, she explained that they were called Twig Blights. Minions of a human magic-user named Bellac, they were intended as guardians for a tree of magical fruit in a place called the Twilight Grove. According to goblin rumor, some of the fruit invigorated the spirit while others stole it away.
Conkin seemed intent on seeking out the source of this new information, almost immediately plunging back the way Erxidar had come. We were left with little choice but to follow the fleet-footed halfling. Thankfully, given our efforts up to this point, the way was mostly clear. Mostly.
We encountered a few goblin patrols, but it didn’t seem to be anything beyond what our party could handle. It wasn’t until we came to a hall filled with caltrops that things began to go awry. Purloin being Purloin stooped to collect some of the tiny hazards, nearly getting her pigtails shot off by a pair of goblins at the end of the hall who had been hidden by a shoddy barricade. With enemies in sight, Awsht and Morn made their way across with little heed, their armor seeming to keep them well-protected. Having none of their ability, I carefully picked my way across, side-stepping the painful-looking barbs. It was much slower going, but safer.
By the time I got across, however, Awsht and Morn had already dealt with the goblins and disappeared down the hall into another nearby room. Naturally, Purloin went careening after them with Conkin not far behind, still going on about the magical fruit. Ingwynn, Erxidar and I brought up the rear. Again, by the time we rejoined the party proper, we found them knees-deep in goblins!
Seeing no better alternative, my first instinct was to lessen the numbers of the opposition so the words of the Sleep spell came foremost to my mind. It proved inordinately successful as almost half the room of goblins fell over in magic-induced slumber. Erxidar followed suit, doing the same to the other half. This proved fortunate since a band of far more experienced enemies plowed into the room from a side door.
Thankfully, they paid little heed to us in those first few moments, charging into the middle where Awsht and Morn were fighting. The hobgoblin captain and his guard laid into Awsht with a ferocity that should have worried me, but I had little time to dwell on it. The goblin mage that arrived with the captain and his cohort came charging at me, laying its foul hands upon my person as it chanted some spell.
I could feel the surge of necrotic energy ripple through my flesh and I silently thanked my Aasimar bloodline for resilience to such pestilence. Still, it wounded me severely and left me reeling so badly that I accomplished little against the remaining enemies. I recall Ingwynn rushing into the fray as yet more goblins joined from another side room, but between the lot of them they managed to whittle them all down.
Conkin and Purloin had chased the goblin mage into the side room it had come from, finding a room with a strange, vine-covered pit. A cursory investigation by Conkin told us that it led down a fair distance before opening up onto some sort of garden being cultivated by unknown humanoids. Given the state of the party after the heavy battle, however, we decided it was against our best interests to climb down there to explore further. We backtracked through the cleared rooms, stopping at a door we’d passed a number of times since we couldn’t seem to figure it out.
“Rebuke the dead, open the way!” was the Draconic script written upon it, or so Meepo had told us earlier. This seemed to resonate with Ingwynn as she came to a stop. We all watched, somewhat amazed, as she began to exhort the door with the word and power of her god. Indeed, it came open at her touch, revealing a dank tomb beyond.
Like so much of this place, it was festooned with more dragon icons and reliefs carved into the stone. Five biers lined the walls to either side and an altar lit by a single candle stood at the opposite end. The party spread out to investigate the room, but I stayed near the door to ensure it didn’t shut behind us and that another goblin patrol wouldn’t catch us unawares.
Par for the course with our luck, skeletons rose up from the biers but given the day we’d had so far the party decimated them with little effort. Particularly Morn and Awsht who seemed to take great delight in smashing them with blunt objects.
Upon the altar, Ingwynn and the others recovered a small, crystal whistle and flask. There was something scrawled in a language I didn’t understand upon the whistle, but we weren’t really in a position to make an in-depth study of the items. Purloin meandered about the altar, but seemed to be doing nothing more sinister than playing with the candle with Awsht — waving their hands through the flames and the like.
I was so tired at this point, I paid little attention to anything else. Hopefully we would have the chance to rest again soon.