After several hours, a few of the sentries reported seeing a troll nearby, sleeping in during the day, which was apparently on its way toward the nest (presumably attracted by last night's celebrations). Once the rest of the Pillarmen were notified, Lena began setting an alarm around the entire nest, accompanied by Igan, Sklooh, and Kasj. Once the sun had set, however, the sleeping troll arose and continued its trek towards the nest and triggered Lena's alarm. Eggsy alone was standing between the troll and the village of Kenku, though. Igan, Lena, Sklooh, and Kasj ran to his aid as the Kenku villagers sought shelter in the canopy after Egg-spiker used thaumaturgy to raise awareness.
The troll beamed down at Egg-spiker and snarled. Trying to intimidate the creature, Egg-spiker roared (to the best of his ability) with his magically enhanced voice. The troll took this as a sign of aggression and attacked. Egg-spiker was unable to do any real damage to the creature, as its wounds mysteriously mended themselves. Suddenly, a bead of fire went streaming past the creature and it erupted into an inferno that engulfed the troll. The creature hollered in pain as many of its pustules burst and it sustained many burn-wounds on its hide. Lena continued throwing fire at the troll to the best of her ability as the Pillarmen all arrived at the scene of the battle. Igan ran into the fray and summoned spectral warriors of Kaela to assist in the assault. Unfortunately, Sklooh and Kasj were a bit slow on the uptake and didn't get involved in the action until late -- after Igan had already pulverized the troll's genitals and Lena had exhausted her fireball spells.
Shortly following the failed shot-putting of Egg-spiker at Lena, the troll fell to the might of the Pillarmen. Egg-spiker went to the temple to inform the Kenku of their success and collapse of the pain of his injuries. The acolytes attended to his wounds. The Kenku were ordered to continue building their traps in defense of the nest, and many of the Kenku went down to see the corpse of the troll. What they found was a human and lizardfolk tearing at, bathing in, and feasting on the gruesome remains. Igan decided to take the troll's scrotum as a trophy and, with assistance from Sklooh, created a bag from it. Igan then determined from Kaela that it was time to leave this place. Preparations were made, Censer was retrieved, and the party decided to set off for Cardell through the forest the following morning.
Their travels through the woods were relatively uneventful -- scavenging for food, navigating through trees and over hills. They lost most of their supplies, however, when the party heard the call of a Jabberwocky roaming towards them. They decided to leave their wagon and run for safety... all except Lena who wanted to get one good look at the creature and discovered that it was a Lesser Jabberwocky. Still, the power of these creatures are so renowned that even lesser Jabberwocks are said to hold their own against ancient dragons.
Their travels took them to a large river that they no had to cross. Lena used her wings to ferry over the smaller members of the party, and Igan used his divine magic to give both himself and Sklooh the ability to walk across the river. The swift current of the river and its various ripples and disruptions made balance and movement very difficult. With Lena helping to steady each of them, they managed to make it across, but not without a few Quipper bites.
Finally, as they turned southward, they encountered a huge Treant traveling northward, away from the border of the forest. When questioned, he seemed friendly enough and expressed his distaste for humans who were "carrying away the forest." The Treant simply decided to leave because he knew that the forest couldn't be destroyed by these men and that it was better to avoid conflict. He informed the party that where part of the forest is destroyed, another part grows to accommodate the loss, but he would be grateful if they could stop the men from taking the forest away from what had been his home for a very long time. The party bid him farewell and he departed in peace.
They finally came to the edge of the forest and saw the grasslands for the first time in weeks. The edge of the forest, indeed, had been the host of lumber operations, and many large trunks were exposed and much of the vegetation had been sheared or burned away. In the distance, over the hill, a large encampment and lumber operation could be viewed. Felled trees were being loaded and carried away on carts pulled by elephants. Many men, but also a few lizardfolk were hacking away at trees along the edge of the forest. The party stopped to plan their next move.
SESSION 26: Don't Feed the Trolls
The Pillarmen arose from their rests and prepared themselves for the journey away from the Kenku's nest. Egg-spiker went to find the acolyte who had helped him discover Bismuth's intentions on the previous day and declared that this Kenku would now be his disciple. Egg-spiker would make this Kenku, called Censer, into a Paladin for Bismuth (whether he wanted it or not). He told Censer to pack his things for travel and went to God-speaker for permission, which was granted. Furthermore, though, God-speaker asked Eggsy a series of questions: How will we find you again and contact you if we need you? It is impossible. Do you plan to reestablish the Mother-tribe? Not at this time. Will you ever return to us? Perhaps one day. The entire situation was very distressing.
Meanwhile, Sklooh and Igan went to the location of last night's encounter with the Displacer Beasts. Igan unearthed the creatures and offered them to Kaela while he drank their blood and bathed in their ichor. Sklooh watched. Lena, all the while, continued crafting her magic item.
Egg-spiker, as he prepared to leave, consulted Bismuth regarding the proper time. According to his augury, he foresaw certain bad omens if the party left presently. The nest was in some kind of immediate danger, and so Egg-spiker went to God-speaker to spread the word. Once the news of an imminent threat was relayed, Eggsy went to Pauper to make preparations. The former Food-thief was overseeing the building of a new home half-way between the ground-level and the ascended-level of the nest. Eggsy informed him of the situation and told him that he ought to send out patrols of other thieves to look out for any dangers to the nest. He also told Pauper to gather up some builders to create traps surrounding the nest as well as maps of the locations of said traps. Egg-spiker enlisted Censer for this duty.
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