We begin in an empty dungeon in the city of Andarra, where the dark elf Aageot has been imprisoned, and is scheduled to be hung the next morning. Using a lockpick cleverly concealed in his mouth, he managed to open his cell door. He also attempted to open a large gate blocking him off from the rest of the prison, but was unable as the warden, alerted to the noise, came to investigate. In true drow fashion our sociopathic hero hid from sight and brained said unfortunate warden with a leg from a broken stool. Not content to merely lay his enemy low, Aageot proceeded to turn the warden’s brains to bloody pulp with his new truncheon, taken from the guard’s body. After braving and defeating a hall armed with various nasty traps and pitfalls, Aageot made it to the exit—and was promptly knocked out by someone.
The next morning, a young cleric of Tyr named Sarto and, his unlikely friend, a tiefling paladin named Siegfried were summoned to see the High Priest of Tyr. As they had come of age to spread to word of glory of Tyr to the world, they are sent on a diplomatic and aid mission to Marshgrave in Neraka, where the kingdom is under constant threat of undead attack. They have been promised two mercenaries to accompany them. As they ready to leave and wait for their new companions, Siegfried’s master-at-arms gifts him with full armor worthy of his new rank.
Ten or so blocks over in a crowded but less wholesome part of Andarra, a hanging is about to commence. On of the dark elves the people despise so much is being dragged towards the gallows by three well armed guards and a very dour looking cleric. As the noose goes down over his head, he expertly slips his bonds and quickly makes to escape—only to be halted by the shouted spell of the cleric, apparently expecting such an event. After a good bit of ridicule, hurled fruit, and a speech detailing the reasons for the execution of the dark elf Aggeot, he is shoved off his step-stool unceremoniously, unable to move in the slightest because of the paralysis spell placed on him. To the crowd he hangs stiff, as if already dead, unable to even struggle. It isn’t the best hanging, as victim cannot even fight vainly for breath for the crowd’s amusement. They wander off gradually, and after a while he is cut down and tossed into the waiting wagon of an undertaker. Of course, many would have been interested to know that rather than asphyxiate, Aageot, much to his surprise even, felt something just barely supporting him, saving him from death, if not intolerable discomfort. His savior happens to be a mercenary named Niska, a skilled fighter with a knack for certain flavors of magic. Aageot is then taken to a warehouse to meet the employers of his rescuer, and is offered an intriguing deal. He can have a Minor Amulet of Disguise, so long as he travels with a diplomatic delegation to Neraka, as his employers can scry perfectly around the wearer of the amulet. He agrees. Outside, a well-paid Niska is offered even more to make sure that a certain dark elf doesn’t skip out on a deal. Ever the mercenary, Niska agrees as well, and they head off towards the Temple of Tyr
(To be continued soon)