The party talked it over, and decided to head back down to the trade town (Tymora) to talk to the Emmisary there. The Emmisary recommended they head to the town to the north to speak with the college of wizards about the amulet -- the sages there would be able to track it to its source, most likely. He gave them 50gp to cover their expenses to date, and 10 'golden leaves' to cover expenses in elven territory, since elves didn't use gold except to trade with outsiders in Tymora.
They decided to get back on a normal schedule, so they spent the night in the seediest inn in town (out of two). It was unfriendly and rowdy, and they didn't get in a fight with or on the side of a pair of gnolls inexplicably in town to trade (inexplicable because of the racism they faced), didn't get in a general bar fight even after Gennal fumbled the key and whacked someone on the back of the head, didn't pass out in a drinking contest that they didn't bet on, didn't sleep with the local prostitutes, and weren't robbed or attacked in their sleep. They got drunk, at least.
Then they spent the next day walking through the woods, on the path, until they reached the elven town north of the fort. The guards didn't want to let them in, but were eventually convinced, and after seeing (but refusing to touch) the cursed amulet, the elven emmisary there (Tyrant or something) let them rest in his office while he talked to the wizards on their behalf.
Unfortunately, he wasn't able to convince the wizards to help them unless they first did a task for the school -- they were to hunt down some hippogriff feathers, hippogriffs having been seen to the north, outside the elvish woods. Since hippogriffs hunted at dusk and dawn, and it was a few hours until dusk, they set out immediately.
A long while later, they reached hippogriff territory. They decided to try luring down the hippogriff to attack their druid, in elk form, even though it hadn't worked on the wolves, and it didn't work this time either. Not on the first hippogriff anyway.
The second one, they decided to stage a little play -- they ran for a grove of trees, and 'spooked' an elk (yes, it was Kalrea) into running out into plain sight. The hippogriff struck! VERY HARD, bloodying the druid instantly. At the same time they discovered that the grove of trees was already full of monsters -- which they heard running towards them through the underbrush.
Rain ran out to heal Kalrea (this took two turns), Gennal ran out to shoot arrows into the hippogriff, while Malik and Loki hung back to deal with whatever it was was moving in the forest. It was cockatrices! The people who'd run after the hippogriff damaged it enough to knock off some feathers and send it running (and to make its first attempt to run fail, with grasping tide), but before finishing it off, turned back to fight the cockatrices, one of which had treed Loki.
With everyone focused on them, the cockatrices didn't last long. They lasted long enough for one of them to bite Rain, though, and Rain proceeded to fail enough saving throws to become completely petrified, which would require an expensive ritual to fix. The party gathered up feathers, set up camp for the night, and in the morning lugged the feathers, the cockatrice carcasses, and Rain's petrified statue body back to the elven city, to the Temple of Melora, where the acolytes of the temple eventually were wheedled into turning Rain back. He didn't remember anything about being stone.
Then it was time to meet the wizards. When they heard they had items to trade, the wizard who met them at the door got all excited and brought them immediately down to the lab. The feathers were sufficient -- his people would look over the amulet. In return for the whole cockatrice carcasses, they'd give the party some minor magical items and stuff, maybe.
It would take a few days to get results from the analysis of the amulet, so they set up shop in a local inn, paying with leaves -- with one leaf for the lot of them. The original emmisary had been a bit generous with his disbursement!
last session | next session