Thornsday, 26 Harmony, 13:1066
After a rough week at sea aboard The Wild Cailín, fraught with sirens, vampires, the party set anchor on the southeastern shore of the Fangs. The ship’s captain, Dave the Halfling, bid them farewell and assured them that they’d be right there waiting when they got out. As he left, the Aasimar firstmate, Shengnyaza, approached the party and let them know that they would wait 24 hours before they left, but given the dangerous environment and Dave’s luck when on land, they couldn’t risk being near there any longer than that. He then assured them that if they could survive the Fangs, then surely they’d be able to make the march to Concord to the Northeast.
Ruat pulled the party deep into a hilly marsh, tugging them ever eastward and down. After a couple hours’ march, the party found themselves before a dank cave entrance, which Eudora immediately recognized as the one from a vision she experienced while using Ruat in a scrying ritual. Inside the mouth were miles upon miles of twisting passages, eventually giving way to what appeared to be an abandoned warren. As they made their way through the cavernous passages, the party began to suspect they were being watched. Their suspicious were confirmed when a hissing growl issued from the shadows. As they approached the hissing darkness, a clear, high voice rang out: “Thisbe! Don’t do that! At least wait until they bite before you get your hackles all raised!” The shadows gave way with a magical twinkle and a gnome stepped forward to greet the party, introducing himself as Mazzel Quickblade. He claimed to be traveling through with a group of gnomes, looking to resettle the abandoned warren, which he identified as having previously belonged to goblins who had been press-ganged dozens of years ago into the service of giants. He was happy to make smalltalk with the party and was willing to engage in a bit of trade. Not feeling particularly up for trudging further into the cave (and perhaps seeking to prevent an ambush) Eudora and Mavery elected to stay behind.
After a couple more hours’ worth of travel through the winding tunnels, the party found themselves being forced into a bottleneck as the passage narrowed, The stale cave air gave way to the reek of decay. As they pressed on, they a chamber lined with large, glittering crystals. Sensing that something was amiss, Arden prepared a Ritual of False Light, which allowed the party to discover an offal pit infested with shriekers. Careful exploration of the cave allowed them to avoid the noisome fungus, eventually bringing them to the bone-strewn lair of some large predator. Beyond that chamber was a maze-like series of crudely-hewn tunnels. Not wanting to get lost, the party made a note to explore later and returned back to the main cave.
The next tunnel emptied into a large chamber lined with all manner of fungus and mold. Several strange fishmen wandered about the fungal farm, tending to the larger blooms and fruit. Another sahuagin, seemingly subservient to the others, wandered about, ladeling fresh water from a bucket over them as they worked. The party approached, and managed to make peaceful contact, a rarity among sahuagin. As they questioned the sea devils’ motives and presence in the area, they became aware of an entity that ruled over them which they would refer to only as “the Great Master”. As the party asked more questions, the lead sahuagin began to speak in a strange monotone, imploring the party to help break the Great Master’s rule, and asking strangely specific questions about their abilities. Once the party seemed to suspect that things were even weirder than they had initially assumed, the Sahuagin struck with their fungal farm implements and barbed nets. As the fight began to enter full swing, a wall to the south shattered and an umber hulk loped onto the battlefield. Despite the hideous reinforcements, the party was able to triumph. The party took a moment to celebrate their hard-fought victory and catch their breath before moving further in pursuit of the next section of the Rod.