All of Coventry is abuzz after the recent disappearance of local eccentric Felric Moonshine, recently arrested for the murder of curmudgeony Eoril Flan, local Alchemist and guild-mage. When wanted posters go up all over town, the Wizard Corin t’Erith encourages his apprentice Melvin to look into the matter. Ever eager to show up his fellow apprentices, Melvin in turn rounds up his “friends” (an odd assortment of demi-humans & forginers he’d been following arround lately) and convinces them to lend a hand. Soon he, along with the wandering Y’bonite Blade Dancer and Healer Urbenna, the Dwarven Craftpriest Kick-bon and three Elves (all more or less interested in proving the innocence o one of their own) – the Thell Twins (Nataur & Ronditugeus) and Charming – all find themselves meeting with Thane Jos Redbeard.
Redbeard, a grizzled old warlord, tells them of the long standing rivalry between Felric and Eoril (why the elf was considered the prime suspect). Now as it happens, the long-standing tradition around these parts is for the Thane to hold judgement over those accused of crimes with the aid of an old family heirloom, the sword Annacon. A magic blade, a gift from the Dwarves long ago, glows blue when ever a lie is told in its’ presence. Well, when Felric was brought before the Thane to be quizzed as to his innocence or guilt in the presence of the blade, everyone was quite surprised when the elf vanished from the court-room. Even more surprised when the sword flew out of it’s scabbard, glowing bright blue, then floated away northward, off into the mountains. The Thane, convinced there might be more to the story than meet the eye, investigated further, eventually getting a confession out of the watch-captain who admitted to murdering Flan after he sold him a faulty love-potion. Knowing now Felric was innocent, he offers the Bounty Hunters 200 gold coins if they can find the runaway elf and bring him back unharmed. He’ll kick in an additional 300 if they retrieve and return his sword as well, but they can earn a reward 25 to 50gp if they can just discover his whereabouts and maybe an answer to why he ran off in the first place.
Redbeard heard a rumor that hunters had spotted a lone elf wandering a trail off to the north, heading towards the ruined manse of Kanos, a Wizard who disappeared almost 40 years ago, and suggests they start there. Grabbing their gear, the novice adventurers set out, first following the old mountain road north-east, then splitting off the beaten path to the little used trail. The following day they surprise two Stirges in a small valley marsh, but Melvin bespells them, making them sleep before wringing their necks and sticking them in a sack to study later. They reach the ruined sanctum by nightfall.
Spotting a nearby well, the Thell Twins investigate while the rest wait by the gate. As they get close, someone within begins shouting to them, begging for aid. Ronditugeus holds the rope and lowers Nataur down, and although she finds a handful of coins and nearly catches her death of cold, no one is found in the freezing waters (though pleading cries can still be heard.
Pausing long enough to make a fire to dry Nadaur off and warm her up, the gang eventually turns back to investigating the Manse. As Melvin pauses to knock, Kick-bon pushes the door open and enters. Finding little of interest in the front hall, they move to the first door to their left, finding the servant’s quarters. This first room, the Butlers, proves to have little of interest (much of the furniture having fallen apart), though a locked desk drawer proves to have some change and old household ledgers. Moving through a curtain to the next room they find the cook’s room in little better shape. Worse, they are surprised to find a giant Crab Spider lurking on the ceiling when Melvin moves to investigate the mouldering old curtain separating the two rooms. In the ensuing battle the arachnid manages to bite both Melvin and Nataur, leaving both dead from it’s poison in short order, before the rest of the party hack it to bits. Ronditugeus is understandably traumatized. They wrap them up in their cloaks and leave them by the front door (along with a beautiful old oil-painting of Coventry Castle they found hanging on the wall which they tuck in a sack to take back with them later).
Moving further into the house, they find a large, stately dining room. Attracted by the glint of a gold silverware set, they are quickly frightened out of their wits and flee the house when a spectral figure enters and sits at the table. Once they recover they enter the house again, this time moving further down the central hall to a second door on the left. This time they find a guest room, though it is in little better repair than the servant’s quarters. While forcing open a cabinet drawer (with his hammer), Kick-bon and several others are blinded by a great flash, which leads to much recriminations. After a while their sight returns, and (leaving Charming behind – the young elf having temporarily been overcome by claustrophobia had stepped outside for a few minutes) they move on to the door at the far end of the room, through another hallway with several doors, into the kitchen. Little of interest is found as they search until the dampness on the gray cutting table oozes upwards to attack! Dodging it’s pseudopods, Ronditugeus is quite unnerved and flees to the door, begging the rest to run with him. Refusing to get near it, Kick-bon takes several shots at it with his crossbow, while Urbenna hacks at it with her swords. While she manages to splatter it into several smaller wiggly bits, the acidic nature of the ooze destroys both her blades. As she dodges to snatch up a butcher’s knife from a nearby table, Kick-bon finishes it with a well-placed shot, piercing it’s amorphous center.
Deciding they’ve had enough, the survivors camp outside for the night, then return to Coventry to sell the painting, divvy up the goods, and bury their dead…