- You befriended a gypsy girl named Annabella, who was passing through your village with a wagonload of costumes to bring to the harvest festival in the neighboring country of Shamash, to the east across the mountains.
- Afraid of brigands, she persuaded you to accompany her to a crossroads in the hills, where she would rejoin a group of her people that came by sea.
- You talked about her people and she told old stories about how the Vistani are unjustly reviled by commoners. She also hinted sadly that she had foreseen terrible events, and that you would all play a crucial role in the events to come.
- Along the way, you were stopped by an armed party led by a Commander Briggs, who attempted to arrest Annabella. As their warrant specified an elderly gypsy woman disfigured by birthmarks, you felt the arrest to be unjustified and fought them off.
- You continued to the crossroads, where you met the other gypsies and reveled into the night. You also overheard hints that their cargo was not as innocent as it appeared.
- While you slept, you dreamt of terrible events in an ancient stone castle, and had a vision of a brooding, maleficent presence behind the illusion.
- Upon awakening, you found the gypsies gone. Annabella left you each a magical gift in thanks, along with a note saying that when you wanted to contact her again, you should speak to Lord Ashenden.
- You returned to Dexterhaven by evening, where you found a town meeting in progress. Sir Adam Stormaway, the leader of the Baron’s personal security forces, put you on trial for aiding and abetting the escape of a criminal and a witch.
- According to Sir Adam, an elderly gypsy woman was seen carrying out a robbery at the home of General Anaximander Caine in the capital city of Glendora. The General, as he is known, is one of the greatest military heroes of the nation.
- The general’s daughter, Xanthippe, saw the gypsy woman summoning some kind of demon, which slew the mansion guards and rifled through their priceless collection of objets d’art. Xanthippe herself was somehow put into a magical sleep that lasted for several days, causing Sir Adam’s delay in following the suspect.
- Through effective persuasion, you convinced the magistrates that you were blameless in the events. Sir Adam was not totally convinced, but could not follow the gypsies into Shamash due to the state of diplomatic relations between your countries.
- He therefore hired you as unofficial agents to follow the gypsies and bring back any information you could, as an opportunity for you to clear your names fully. You agreed, and set off for Shamash.
THE DEAD RISE
- On your way across the pass through the mountains, you investigated lights and noises inside an old church. You found a party of grave robbers, who had unearthed an ancient room under the church.
- In the basement, they tried to remove a black gem from the throat of a mummy, but roused a terrible undead creature who turned them into zombies. You successfully fended off the monsters, but on the death of the leader, the black gem fired a burst of dark radiance that awakened the dead for miles around.
- You barricaded yourselves in the church and fended off the zombies until dawn arrived, at which time the power of the gem was fully expended.
- One of the undead you slew was Khamul’s father. Khamul now wears his father’s military jacket.
- From tattoos that you found on the grave robbers, you deduced that the gem was being sought by the Sorcerer-King: a mysterious shadowy remnant of an ancient civilization that somehow clings to a ghostly existence.
- On the way to Shamash, you encountered several members of an unfamiliar insectoid race, with whom you made a deal in order to avoid combat: you would help their trapped comrades escape from the menagerie run by the viziers in Shamash. They also offered items in exchange for the head of the Grand Vizier, whom they claimed had imprisoned and experimented on them.
- In Shamash, you discovered that slaves from the northern steppes were being kept as slaves by the natives. A lucrative slave trade has been operating for years by some in the Glendora military, who kidnap people from the north, bring them to Shamash and sell them.
- You also discovered that your contact in Shamash, Felix Lessard, was the local slave trader. Before you slew him, he implicated both General Caine and Khamul’s father in his operation.
- You found out that the costumes being transported by the gypsies for the festival were a front for smuggling weapons to the slaves with the help of the local priest of Pelor, Father Vikal.
- The slaves, under their leader Thorsten, had made a plan to win their freedom. They made a deal with powerful devils being kept in the menagerie: in exchange for their freedom, the devils would return on the night of the harvest festival, while the citizenry reveled in the town square, and cause chaos by slaying as many guards and townspeople as possible to cover the slaves’ escape.
- You spoke to the Grand Vizier (the brain in the jar) in the menagerie, who offered you money and items in exchange for the recapture of his missing insectoids. You turned him down, and instead slew him and his zookeepers, and freed the captive animals.
- Father Vikal, horrified, convinced you to save innocent lives by both slaying the devils and covering the escape of the slaves yourself, which you did. He gave Zel’El a shield to aid in the battle.
- You left the town with the slaves and finally met up with the elusive gypsy caravan, though Annabella was no longer with it. In exchange for your heroism, Thorsten trained you in a combat move known to his people.
- The slaves headed north to return to their homelands in the company of the gypsies.
- You returned to the insectoids having made good on your bargain.
- Claw Gloves from Annabella
- Gem of Colloquy from Annabella
- Preservation Shield from Father Vikal in Shamash
- the Mysterious Black Gem
- Boots of Stealth from Annabella
- Warmage’s Uniform +1 from his father
- Gauntlets of Ogre Power from Annabella
- Spirit of Storm from being experimented on in the viziers’ menagerie
- Northern Fist Paralyzing Point from Thorsten the slave leader
NOT DISTRIBUTED items from the insectoids:
- Ebony Fly
- Stern Handler’s Wraps