It’s been a few days settling into rooms and hiring Big Morgan to melt down your silver treasure to coat your weapons. The thought that Filaar or Jarvick might betray you has you on guard, and there’s not much better to guard against wererats than silver.
In an abandoned lighthouse tower on the shore of the Swamp Cut river, Odo informed you that there was a necromancer capable of excising the tainted blood in Melkor’s veins. That thought brings back bad memories. Memories that should have been left on the trail from Hel Hold to Zelkor’s Ferry.
In the first day of travel, Melkor became unusually thirsty. He went through all of the water in the party and that did not sate him. Then it started getting strange. In secret, he had been gathering woodland animals and drinking their blood. It’s possible Welsteril was helping him, but maybe he did it all on his own. By the second day, Melkor was hungry. Everything he ate did nothing to fill his need for flesh. You started to wonder what kind of flesh would satisfy a recently resurrected monk slain by ghouls. Ok, there was no need to wonder.
The necromancer named himself Ulman Dark. He appeared to be less dark and more just creepy. Ulman believed he could sense a deathly ill in Melkor’s blood, and recommended a transfusion. Short straw ended up in Barak’s hand and he laid down on Ulman’s table. There were needles and tubes that convinced everyone to leave quickly. Ulman requested you call back in a day.
A day later Melkor felt much better. Barak was pleased to have the tubes removed and took a long bath. He would have enjoyed it had Odo’s stableboy not turned up missing from the night before.
It seemed Vort, the stablehand, wanted to impress Tallie, the tavern waitress, and decided to go off hunting stirges in a distant cavern. He had not returned by midday, and that had everyone worried. The keelboat Captain of the Lucky Oak was thought to have given the boy a ride upriver, but he was not to be found either. Probably just best to wait until Vort returns or turns up dead. OR…
A day’s trudge through the snow west of Zelkor’s brought you to the river caves where Vort went in search of Stirges. There were plenty of fouled tracks at the entrance. Too many to be just a boy, and Stirges don’t make tracks on the ground. Probably just best to turn around and tell Odo that Vort was not to be found. OR…