After the original Elania party lost two party members (Paxton/Ruprecht and Stonehand) Lieutenant Rovell led the remaining party members (Talon and Halmod) to Three Oaks in the hope of finding suitable replacements to clear out the bandit lair. After working out even more implausible reasons for their presence than the original party members, Lt. Rovell met three new adventurers in the bar.
Malph – stylish, suave and persuasive, a human bard of immaculate reflection.
Kugel – fluorescent gnome summoner astride a dragon eidolon.
Gregor – paladin embodiment of truth, justice and the Elanian way, and his sultry cohort, Violet.
Lt. Rovell offered them a chance to join Captain Kane’s special forces unit and each agreed, more or less, Gregor more, and Kugel less. But all did agree in the end.
The newly bound party headed northwest to the area Lt. Rovell believed the bandit hideout to be located. They encountered no difficulties on the day long ride. Upon setting up camp for the night Lt. Rovell examined the sky with a strange brass device, making notes in his journal. Malph managed to strike up a conversation with the young nobleman and soon the two were chatting amiably as Lt. Rovell explained that he was tracking the location and brightness of a strange red star in the sky at the request of his grandfather, Lord Rovell, who believed the object to be somehow connected with the ravings of strange prophets which had appeared all over the continent. Lt. Rovell indicated that Lord Rovell was in some sort of dispute with the elf wizards who frequently visited his palace and made use of his “Seeing Room.”
After setting watch for the night their rest was briefly interrupted again by the goblin apparition which warned of “the day of two suns” and “the return of the one.” Kugel felt certain the reference must have been to an ancient legend of demonic rule over the world during the Dwarvenwyrd. Again the party quickly drove the apparition away, this time through the channeling of positive energy which created pain and suffering for the undead creature. As it left it warned that the party was only securing its own doom.
The next day the party left their horses behind as they sent Talon to scout ahead to attempt to locate the bandits without being spotted themselves. An invisible Talon managed to spot a crossbowman sitting in a tree without being spotted in turn. In a stunning display of skill, Talon actually silently climbed the tree and managed to sneak attack the presumed sentry. Unfortunately the killing stroke was not enough to avoid a shriek of pain as the rogue’s blade bit deeply into the man. After that there was silence in the forest as the party waited and some in the party attempted to hide.
Suddenly a crossbow bolt pierced Kugel as other bolts clattered harmlessly off rocks. Talon spotted a hidden crossbowman and Kugel found the wielder of the crossbow which had struck him. The party quickly sprang into action, with Talon attempting to sneak behind the first bandit and Kugel riding his eidolon into battle. Other bandits appeared and suddenly a large trollish creature appeared, charging forward to attack Talon, but failing to land a solid blow.
The fight was quick, Kugel’s bat swarm sending one bandit fleeing in blind panic. Gregor and Violet leaped to the aid of their comrades healing damage almost as quickly as it was delivered. Malph provided powerful encouragement to his allies while his bow dealt quick death to his foes. Halmod sent volley after volley of magic missiles at the rampaging trollish beast. As the trollish beast was finally felled, the lone surviving bandit surrendered to Gregor.
After ensuring the remains of the trollish creature were reduced to ashes, the party turned its attentions to the captured bandit. For a long time they could get nothing out of him except that the bandit hideout was about a mile to the north, which they had already surmised. Finally, after Lt. Rovell provided a field commission for Gregor to act in judgment of evil-doers in the name of the Rovell family, the captive sneered at Lt. Rovell that the bandit camp was the home of a Caston family member.
The felled trollish beast was torn and burned to ash, and nothing survived the treatment. The bodies of the bandits contained the paltry sum of 19 silver pieces worth of coin. All of their equipment was mundane and poorly maintained. The bandit treasure is assumed to be back at the bandit hideout.