Mage Meath’s Silver Tower has faded from view. A long day’s march East, the direction Meath had sent them, left Ghanir and Hamron encamped in a thicket of pines. Neither Man nor Dwarf has spoken so much as a word since their second banishment in as many weeks, a silence magnified by the stillness of the Mosquito Barrens.
Settling in for the night, Ghanir and Hamron’s attention is drawn suddenly to a rustling off in the pines. Grasping their new weapons, and dreading having to use them, the pair make their way into the underbrush. The rustling, obnoxiously loud in the heavy quiet of the Barrens, seems to be coming from a bush with blood red leaves.
A bush whose leaves burst into flame… as the plant burns away, a Dwarf-sized black sculpture is revealed. It has a humanoid shape but the head of a terrible beast, made from material reminiscent of Ghanir’s mace.
Smoke rises from the nose, mouth and ears of the bestial figure. No ordinary smoke though, it eventually forms into a translucent figure familiar to you from Madwand’s Cave and your recent nightmares.
Taran has the shadow of a smile on his pale lips as he speaks, “I have chosen well, you two will make fine lieutenants.”
Not waiting for a response he continues, “I realized that I might not have given you all the tools you need to fulfill the tasks I’ve laid out for you. Information is what’s missing, especially as your travels take you far from home. Take these…”
Three silver bowls appear on the ground.
“For you to use when you need certain answers. Pile them with filth and summon my Demon spies who spend their time prying in dirty little corners.”
A flapping of wings from above startles you and Aspen caws his displeasure at being surprised.
Leering down at you is a flesh colored gargoyle, whose protruding belly and pink bat wings cannot tear your eyes away from an enormous mouth and rows of razor sharp teeth.
“My servant Bertie will be seeking rumors about my lost forces. He will visit you from time to time and make sure you’re on the right path.”
Taran appears thoughtful for a moment, “Until you grow accustomed to your new lives, try hard to think about the ‘innocents’ you’ll be saving.”
With that the smoke disappears, Bertie alights to the skies and the last gleams of the setting sun strike the three silver bowls before you.