The Argent Springs Explorers

2nd expedition debrief, still unnamed company
Transcribed for posterity by Angus the traveling journaler, unaffiliated with the company

Journaler's note: Misspellings apparently intentional

I am told to make sure that you see this summary:
* “Where once were Gnolls, now there are gnot.
* We got meat for the Oasis.
* Quinn brokered the company a contract.”

Found scrawled on the walls beyond the Gnolls.
*
I spoke with the dead
* I disturbed their rest
* I answered their questions 
* and passed their test
* They told me of a fire within a flame
* To be found on the ground
* Use your boots to find what you seek.

The following section was dramatically reenacted and has been transcribed to the best of my ability as an accurate recapture

…Jarl and Felix both leap the barricade at the same time. Taut bows are no match for swole (el)bows, as bare-knuckle brawlers rain blows upon foes. Proving jumping is for losers, Aytac shifts into a boar and charges through the barricade with no regard for their own safety.

A horizontal slash, a diagonal slash, and another lower horizontal slash. Zephyr is now sheathing his blade as his cape billows in the wind and the gnoll falls to pieces behind him. A blade of blood, comes down at the ranger courtesy of the giant gnoll choking out father Killian. Zephyr manages to just barely get stuck with the blade, turning a killing blow into a glancing one. He follows up his deft sidestep, by blowing smoke in the gnoll’s face. Did I mention he was smoking the halfling pipeleaf earlier? He was totally doing that.

For the giant gnoll, the smoke doesn’t fall away, the room does. An unlight is blinding and the many whispers are deafening. The cleric advances while chanting. The sight and sound of the TRUTH that Utja wields proves just too much and the void touched gnoll falls to its knees in existential terror.

Deft dwarven digits pluck yellowed canine eyes from the head gnoll’s head. Darkiron tosses them into the air and hunger on dark wings snatch their treat from the air. Gnoll is down before Father Killian, blood streaming down the face like tears. Killian delivers the Mercy of the Menanki™ to the half dead creature. Blood, brain, and viscera cover Jarl like so much overripe fruit.

Before the party can collect the meat…Aytac the severely wounded anaconda unhinges their jaw and devours the swole gnolls whole. As the remaining one trembles in terror, they are convinced to give the hidden location of the Gnoll’s farm. The party takes as much of the livestock as they can carry to <u>The Glittering Oasis</u>. The meat is SO good Nedron immediately fights to get the team on contract and secure their services for the future.

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1st expedition debrief, company yet unnamed
Transcribed for posterity by apprentice scrivner Bartleby, unaffiliated with the company

Observations of the Menanki, first excursion by The Unnamed.

Upon descending into the entry room, we were presented a choice. Rona, our Ranger, discovered tracks that indicated a heavier amount of foot traffic going down the hallway to the left. Since our mission was to hunt down a creature that attacked and killed several members of the Greencloaks this was a good indication as to the direction they had been investigating. This path led into a large room with some sort of light source in the center.

Note: As we progressed through the ruins we were mostly led forward by the more impulsive members of our group, and so any side-passages not explored are not due to any noted danger or obstruction except where otherwise noted. Those on a less urgent mission I would encourage to take the time to fill out the gaps our initial investigation left.

Since the tracks led on through the southeastern doorway we headed in that direction. It was here that our investigation of the room was interrupted by Rona’s dog detecting movement from the eastern passage. Thrognar rushed forward to intercept the creatures but was unable to avoid the bear trap set just inside the next room. We fought many of these small, spear-wielding creatures as well as one that was capable of using magic. The magic-user was killed as well as several of the other creatures but quite a few escaped into the southern passageways. Keep alert on further excursions to this section of the ruins as they may reclaim these rooms and/or set up more traps. There is also a lack of lighting within these areas, so torches or other sources would be recommended.

We then progressed through the eastern door of the dark room and into a large room that stretched from north to south with multiple exits along each of the walls. The contraption in the center of this room invites further investigation, as we were unable to discern its purpose. The northeastern wall was blocked by rubble, but we were able to clear it and within found a strange statue of some sort, on which was a set of very fine looking leather armor. It was decided that Rona would gain the most benefit from this armor, but for some reason our headstrong warrior took a dislike to the set.

The barred gate to the north became the focus of several of our party members. The druid eventually used his powers to transform into a mouse a squeeze through the gap, then a few minutes later the gate opened. It seemed he had discovered a lever on the other side, past a bridge over an underground river, that opens the door. This lever only keeps the door open as long as it is held, however. Some way to jam the door open or lock the lever in place might be a good priority just to facilitate travel through this section without the use of transformative magics.

A narrow passageway to the west led to a large room covered with spider webs. Dangling from the ceiling were many humanoid figures, some of which were quite still and some of which were moving and making noises. We cut down those we determined were still alive, and once this was done Rona and myself continued on down the western passageway as her dog had become quite agitated from something in this direction. Going south at the intersection led us to a room with a pile of skeletons to one side, the other side blocked off by some bars several feet high. Behind these bars were about a dozen injured and mangled creatures. It seems as if these spiders have some sort of intelligence, keeping living beings down here and crippling them so they are unable to escape while then feeding upon their blood for nourishment. According to a halfling we healed back to some sort of stability the leader of these spiders is further to the north. Those who were back in the earlier room hanging from the ceiling are used as hosts for her young, and in fact a few of those we cut down were already badly infested and so some of our party took it upon themselves to dispose of them rather than attempting to help the situation medically.

It was at this point that we decided to return to the exit. We had several injured that we needed to return to the surface for proper medical care, and most of us were ourselves injured in some capacity. On our way out the remaining bodies as well as the webs were burned. Any later excursions should investigate to make sure that all of them were destroyed.

Even though many of the creatures trapped in the pen where we found the halfling were gnolls and other such races, they still deserve our assistance. No one should have to go through what these people have endured. I highly recommend the next excursion be centered around saving these people in addition to scouting out the rest of this first area. If this giant spider is indeed the Hyperion we took the job to defeat then I have taken a holy vow to see it destroyed. If it is not the Hyperion then it still cannot be allowed to linger down there. The number of bodies was unsettling to think about, and having some form of malevolent intelligence using us as a farm for its own sustience and reproduction cannot be allowed to continue. I should greatly like to be there when it is destroyed, but even if I am not I will be relieved that it occurred regardless.

Hopefully my sickness will pass soon and I will be able to join in another excursion. Best of luck to you all.

-Renne Dukom, Observer for Our Lady The Light’s Steward Kel-Fa, God of Order

**Scribe's Note: I am writing a note about 'the ranger's armor' and the fact that 'it eats all the light.' The orc refused to leave the room unless I took specific note about this. 

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Logbook: First entry
We need a name!

Well, it looks like we're being told to log our adventures. Our numbers are getting to the point where not everyone will be on every outing. This will help us all stay on the same page, or something. Heh. Same page. Book. 

Look anyway when you get back, figure out what you want to report and then let the scribe know. He'll note everything down and you'll be set. Glory! Or something. Forever! (Or as long as this book isn't burned or stolen I guess)

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