Riding along the quiet road between the trade post and the village, the prisoner rescued from the gibbet tree filled the party in on the recent history of the Crossroads and its relationship with his village.
The trade post was formerly a guard outpost for the knights of Arislen. The soldiers quartered there kept watch for any threats to the city from the East, and occasionally visited the nearby village to purchase supplies and food. Around two months ago, a band of mercenaries rode into town and overwhelmed the guards there. They then moved on to the guard post and killed or converted the remaining soldiers.
Villagers were put to work digging the graves outside the outpost, which was converted to a trade depot. The mercenaries took up residence in the village and erected the gibbet tree to punish villagers who crossed them. The village became split over this new arrangement. Many accepted their new neighbors, arguing that they spent much of the money they acquired in the village, more than the soldiers of Arislen ever did. They also did a better job of protecting the village from bandits and wild creatures. Those not in favor argued that the mercenaries were violent and rude, and that anyone could be sent “up the Tree” for seemingly any reason.
The group spent the mile ride to the outskirts of the village debating how they might be able to assist. Despite suggestions of delaying, going back to Arislen, and otherwise not riding directly to the village, eventually they agreed to assess the situation. None of them wanted the village to bear the brunt of the repercussions of their actions at the Crossroads.
They took up a position in the woods on the side of the road and watched as mercenaries and villagers went about their business. After a few short minutes, four armored men left one of the two-storied buildings and began walking out of the village and along the road towards where the group was hiding. The group followed the mercenaries – a hobgoblin, an orc, a human, and a goblin – a short distance until it was clear that they were headed to the Crossroads. Attacked from behind, the human and orc were killed but the goblin and the hobgoblin were captured for questioning.
Neither could offer any exact numbers when asked how many of their comrades were in the village, but the hobgoblin confirmed that they worked for Millen (whose whereabouts were unknown) and that he had run from the Crossroads to report back at the village, where he was told to return to investigate.
The goblins tied securely to a tree and divested of their belongings (except a dagger the goblin insisted on keeping in his boot), the group resolved to sneak into the village at night with the assistance of the prisoner they had rescued.
Safely inside the ex-prisoner’s house, they ate, drank, and tended to their wounds, making ready for what would surely be a difficult morning.
Quest XP: 0
Encounter XP: 525
Role Playing XP: 50
Total XP Per PC For This Session: 182
Current Total Shared XP For The Campaign: 1,498
Bonus Individual XP:
Bree: 10XP (Background questions turned in.)
Total Treasure For This Session: 25GP