The party's benefactor, Brock Bazarian introduced the party to Eskan Colnet, of the House of Colnet. Eskan's nephew, Brannod, went on a camping trip up into the mountains to celebrate a reunion of sorts with his childhood friend Vasil Volenta of the House of Volenta. Several days later Vasil returned to Gurdikar alone, bruised and battered. He told the tale that a rockslide had buried Brannod and his escort, killing them all. Their period of mourning was interrupted when the House of Colnet received a note from a member of Brannod's escort. He was nursing his wounds in the small village of Orcsbane to the east. He claimed that the group had been ambushed by orcs, and Vasil was responsible.
The party traveled to Orcsbane and met with the very drunk guard, learning that the orcs had captured Brannod and that a man with the strength of a giant buried the escort with a barrage of boulders. Vasil seemed friendly with the man and called him by name. The party took off into the mountains and investigated the remains of the escort and are currently looking for where Brannod is being held captive. Thus far their journey has been relatively uneventful. They were ambushed by a group of giant bombardier beetles and Garcon and Grizwald slew a werewolf. William wandered off by himself and slept outside of Fort Lusk one night.
After the fourth day of running around the mountains, the party came upon the lair of Gador, the firbolg responsible for Brannod's kidnapping. Though defeated and captured after an initial skirmish, the party rebounded with a grand escape, a lot of leaping with edged weapons in their hands (apparently these heroes never had mothers) and Grizwald never wanting curried chicken again. After another bloody battle, the party finally felled Brunnel and Gador and rescued Brannod.
Amongst the items found in Gador's lair was a note from one Gershus Koch requesting Gator and Brunnel's presence for services in the town of Dungaelen. Informing Brock of this, the party met with the mayor of this small town and Avanthus, a druid of Sela. Although they didn't recognize the name, they deduced that it might have something to do with the evil cult that took up residence the Valley of the Earth Mother. The party decided that investigating this cult might be the right thing to do. They made there way there and discovered that this onetime natural paradise was now a land razed of all animal and plant life, and a river of blood ran from the temple the peaceful druids once called their sanctuary. After an investigative first strike, the party retreated to mend their wounds and come up with a good attack plan. William did some scouting around while the rest of the party took refuge in a cave they found alongside the river that led to the Tor (what the Valley was now called). There was a pit that dropped down over 100 feet into the temple, and Cole, William and N'kazz volunteered to enter while the rest kept watch.
Once inside, this trio rescued a monk of Ishkalan from certain sacrifice and continued their quest to find the Torc of Sela. The body count was very high as they broke into sleeping rooms for ten of the Marauders of Raekash (their worship was discovered too late after William was fried to a crisp, brought back as a human and...). They also came upon 9 orcs carousing in a store room, and after William botched a surprise attempt slew them as well. Ferdian has allowed himself to be taken over by good-aligned spirit who also seeks to find the Torc. William wandered off invisible and was charmed and later killed when his charmer was unhappy with William being unable to find his long-time comrades. This remaining trio (Cole, N'kazz and Ferdian have decided to explore the lower levels of the temple for the Torc, thinking that whatever evil presence is here may be more easily driven out once the Torc is recovered.
Three days after Cole, N'kazz and the now-deceased William entered, Kendrake, Jorath and especially Garcon started getting antsy. They did not know that those already inside had dealt a heavy blow already to the priest of Raekash by killing them as they rested. They wandered around the upper levels, killing most things they came in contact with, Broosh the imprisoned ogre being the exception. Meanwhile the other half of the group was contending with all sorts of undead and moving closer to the Tor. After defeating what seemed to be a lich and stopping the flow of blood that was clogging the Spring of Life. With the Decanter of Endless Blood stopped, this once defiled Temple to Sela returned to its previous beauty, driving out the Marauders.
Returning home to Gurdikar, the party found that every resident of this famous town had been slain, dead Mandalorians strewn amongst the bodies of friends, families and former party members indicated this was perhaps the first strike by the enemies to the south. Journeying on towards Port Auldmark to warn Lord Koraan, another member of the party met his maker as Ferdian was ripped apart by an Arumvorax. Heinously unprepared for the unseasonable snow, the party moves towards Dragonjaw where they should be able to purchase more suitable equipment before making the week long journey to Port Auldmark.
Standing last watch while practicing his wild magic rituals Garcon witnessed a huge beast swoop from the sky and snatch up Shavra and one of the party's horses. Garcon woke everyone from there slumber, and they met a Knight of Aetiani mounted on a pegasus. He introduced himself as Tiberius Selkirk and stated he had been waiting for this beast that had been ravaging the countryside of livestock, to strike again. Climbing the mountain the party discovered it was a dormant volcano. Climbing down, they discovered a temple to Ulkor that had been desecrated by priests of Tiburon over 25 years ago. Containing down into the heart of the mountain they met this great beast, a black dragon, and through good battle tactics (or is it that the part's thoroughly chaotic nature was finally beneficial?) felled the black dragon without too much injury. They found Shavra, the horse had already been eaten, but they were able to quiet their aching hearts looting the dragon's hoard.
They made their way to Dragonjaw without any more problems and found themselves in another situation as Kendrake was arrested and detained by the guards at the city gates. Tiberius asked why Kendrake was being detained and was informed that it was per the governor's orders and he could return tomorrow for more information. Kendrake discovered that a one-time lover had bore him a child she named in his grandfather’s (and idol's) honor. This brought a tear to his eye. Seems in the years Kendrake has been gone this girl's father had been elected governor of the city and put out a warrant for Kendrake for child support. Seems that Fyona knew that Kendrake was a scamp and just wanted to see him again. Her father, being the governor, had the power to make this happen. Of course, the party's main reason for going to Dragonjaw was for some supplies (which Jorath and Cole bought with their new-found treasure), and to eventually get information to Port Auldmark and Lord Koraan of the assault upon Gurdikar. In talking with the constable at the guard-house, Tiberius learned that Lord Koraan would be coming to Dragonjaw within a few days, and that Tiberius, who would be Kendrake's legal representation, would be able to meet with the governor when he met with Kendrake. Ishtar was robbed of a magic staff by a pickpocket and various members of the discovered that there was an individual (or individuals) known as Gobbling Jack who has been committing gruesome murders in the city.
Tiberius went to meet with the governor as legal representation for Kendrake, who was still in prison. Seems that not only did Kendrake have a child who was suffering through the terrible twos, but that the child's grandfather was none other than the governor. Of course this helps to explain the governor's interest in charming Kendrake. The governor agreed to Tiberius partial payment of the 3,200 gold in back child support Kendrake owed. For this and the parties promise to find this Gobbling Jack, Kendrake was moved to a more comfortable cell and the rest of Tiberius' party would be deputized by Commander Gundar Medran. Tiberius returned to the Rusty Sabre to inform everyone of their intent and they then split up to comb the city for information regarding Gobbling Jack. They heard many rumors ranging from a creature over eight feet tall and reeking of brimstone to a vampire to an escaped lion. After several days of information gathering, the party lay in their beds resting comfortably when a shriek awoke them . Gobbling Jack had struck again, this time killing a freelance thief Jorath had met while dining who was staying down the hall at the Rusty Sabre. The next day the party met with Rilp Bermain and his assistant Mevran Goss, friends of the governor's and agreed to stakeout Rilp's warehouse, where, if costly information was correct, the thieves guild would be striking the following evening. The party agreed, sensing some connection between the dead body of the thief Zardinel Grish and the "Under New Management" Friendly Fellows. Ishtar spent several hours with the body communing with his god and discovered that an individual by the name of Greyblade was the new master of the Fellows and was connected to this murder. the most interesting thing about this murder was that it seemed that whoever entered Zardinel's room did so with theifly skill ( someone named Gus) but when they left, had large animal footprints. Ishtar discovered that priests of Yif at higher levels have the ability to assume various animal forms. Garcon has been heard cheering wildly from his room twice while staying at the Sabre. Tiberius has been more than happy directing the rest of the party while stealing off for a rendezvous with a young woman he met at the Tanglewood. After having been busy the past several days roaming the city in search of rumors and information on gobbling Jack, the party is looking forward to a possible meeting with him.
The party was awakened by city guards and were informed that the governor requested their presence. At the governor's mansion the Hammers of Justice were introduced to Lord Koraan and the Council of Three who informed the Hammers that although it seemed that the assault upon Gurdikar was made by the Mandalorians, it was not. They had no solid leads as to who made the attack, but requested the Hammers' help with research. Kendrake's bail was paid by Lord Koraan and he joined his comrades for the planned ambush of the thieves breaking into Mevran's warehouse. They set themselves in ambush positions and were surprised by the thieves who apparently broke in invisibly. Several members were dropped in the battle, during which it was discovered that their enemies were not vampires or lower-planar kin, but were-rats. The spellcasting were-rat made her escape and while our fearless crew regrouped, attempting to tie up the unconscious were-rat that was left she pushed the door open, casting enough damage to drop several more members and light the warehouse in beautiful hues of red and orange against the night sky. This certainly brought forth the attentions of everyone in the Merchant's district. The fire was quickly extinguished using water from the polluted river. the smell was less than pleasant. Several townsfolk overheard that were-rats were the cause of this disturbance and riots broke out quickly across the city. Returning to the Rusty Sabre to rest and heal themselves, the party members came across a small mob beating what appeared to be a lycanthrope. It was nothing more than an older gentleman dressed in an appropriate for the weather fur coat. Dragonjaw, a city where tensions were already running high, was not in a full state of panic. Meeting with Vodrec Filadrin, Chief Inspector for the city, the party was healed by several clerics and informed that they alone would have to find Greyblade and stop him as the city's forces were needed to uphold martial law. Mevran entered the Sabre at just after dawn and thanked the members for the attempt at help and passed along the fact that Rilp reported the thieves who had sold out Greyblade smelled more like sewage than normal. Tiberius of course thought any smell but that out expensive perfumes and fresh flowers was too much. Ishtar decided to wait until business hours and acquire a map of the sewers and after doing so divined with his god for help in pinpointing the location of Greyblade. Entering the sewers at late morning, the Hammers were disgusted at what they found. part of the reason the city smelled so rank is the sewer system had never been completed nor had proper waste routes been mapped. Working methodically, they moved through this lair of stench and came across a passage not labeled on their map and eventually found a well hidden secret door. The party entered with some haste and found a veritable fortress, each passage they entered secured by a sturdy portcullis, each of which took the combined strength of brawny members Tiberius and Jorath to get through. They finally came upon a room where several were-rats as well as the mage were, only to meet Greyblade for an instant as he retreated behind a curtain. Due to the cramped confines of the hallway where the wererats cornered everyone but Tiberius who had burst in. Jorath battled his way in, but at this point the mage Spell-fang and the other were-rats had made easy work of Tiberius who was dropped from a blow by a massive were-rat. SpellFang made her escape before the reinforcements could arrive in the form, of Kendrake, Arrutha and Ishtar. They dropped the remaining beasts who fought with a frightening bloodlust. Moving through the curtain, the party finally found a secret door just beyond which a note was tacked to wall by a main gauche whose blade dripped with what appeared to be spittle. The note swore vengeance with interest upon these interlopers.
Realizing that several members had been infected by lycanthropy by the were-rats, and having promised Lord Koraan help in researching the downfall of Gurdikar, they set about starting their research in the city’s great library, and Ishtar went to his temple which hosted quite an impressive collection of arcane knowledge as well. Ishtar discovered that the most feasible cure for the lycanthropy which affected him, Kendrake and Tiberius was to find a high-level priest to cure them, this of course had to be done before the next full moon, over 20 days away. Only problem was that no priest of high enough rank resided within the city. He did learn though of a group of intellects in the Spikey Mountains who had been known to aid individuals cursed as they were. Meanwhile their research into the possible cause of the destruction of Gurdikar led them to a poem called "Dark Asunder" written years ago by the famed poet Zymerma. The poem discussed the defeated god Moebis and his possible resurrection. Research into how a god could be brought back to Terratha they discovered that this wasn’t a problem provided the god had been destroyed.
Setting out for the Hermitage on the Lake, home to a possible cure for their lycanthropy they came across an elf who was carrying a wagon-load of goods to Cold Spring. The elf’s party had all been killed by bandits, and with a promise of sharing the fee for safely delivering the goods the party agreed to help the wagon-driver. Approaching Cold Spring, the party was attacked by bandits and the elf died, and the wagon’s contents were revealed: hundreds of silver weapons: the perfect weapons for fighting were-creatures. Thinking it best to not deliver these goods, in light of the current condition of several party members, they were set to move on when they came across a note promising 10,000 gp for safe delivery of the goods. This being too much money to pass up the party moved on towards Cold Spring. Once there they saw who the weapons were for, over 100 soldiers were encamped about the town, led by Sir Lance Vandric. Sir Lance, not the smartest paladin ever, met with the party and even though his magical sword, known for detecting were-creatures was humming like crazy, he gladly paid the party. Breathing a sigh of relief the present party members (Ishtar, Cole, Garcon and a new member thrust into this boy’s club Ellifayne Silvertree) hired a guide to lead them into the Spikey Mountains. Their guide was truly a repulsive individual: dirty, unkempt, reeking of something long since rotten, but his skills as a guide were excellent and his proficiency with the great maul he carried was frightening. After an attack by several owl-bears a member of the Caleran army, a Sergeant Gaelron the Unstrikeable ran over to offer assistance. Currently he was heading home to check on his family and since they were all headed in the same basic direction decided he would accompany them. The party slew a great lizard with razor sharp teeth over 6 inches long. This prompted a barbarian tribe in the Sharptooth Valley to declare them gods. They moved onwards towards the hermitage, time their greatest enemy. Finding the Hermitage, the party proceeded to look for the fabled Moonblossom, an extremely rare plant necessary in the cure of lycnathropes. Ellifayne knew of a grove where there were some, but in finding the grove found only one. Cole called upon his god to populate the grove with hundreds of the flower and they headed back across the steep mountains to the hermitage. Camped out in the snow one night the party was attacked by several yeti. The yeti’s fearsome appearance froze several members with terror but even with this fact the beasts did not pose that great a threat. The greatest threat truly was to come from within their own ranks. As Ishtar was getting pummeled by one of the great beasts he fell to the ground, screaming an unholy scream. The rest of the party still busy with several of the yeti watched in horror as Ishtar started transforming into a were-rat. Gaelron, Cole and Stinky (their dwarven guide) ran over to him, hoping to subdue their comrade. Ishtar, evil radiating from his red eyes proved a worthy adversary for the three of them and finally started to retreat into the woods when he was taken down. Garcon had thrown a bag of enchanted stones at him, each magiced to release a wild surge, and as the party was hastily shackling the fallen Ishtar, inadvertently stepped on the. What happened next was a blur of wild magic, ending with the party being lifted up into a tornado and being deposited on a grass covered plain. Meanwhile, Tiberius had finally caught up with Jorath and Kendrake who waited for him outside Cold Spring, Floric had stolen off in the night and Arrutha had left the party already upset as always being counted on to carry them. Tiberius, Kendrake and Jorath sped up the trail to the mountain, hoping they were in time to cure the lycanthropy when they were attacked by several orcs. They were making easy work of them when Kendrake and Tiberius dropped to the ground, convulsing. Jorath watched as they started transforming into were-rats and fighting back the last orcs mounted Shavra and sped off into the woods.