The party headed into the Morass. After traveling for nearly 2 days, and fending off a very unpleasant late-night visit from a pack of dire rats, the party arrived at a small knoll with a deep-set burrow jutting out of the morass. To their minds this must be the Wyrm’s Rest ben Yaza spoke of. They cautiously approached the nest only to be attacked by a large black dragon lying hidden beside the cave. The beast fought ferociously, but fell to the party’s attacks. Within the burrow the party found, wrapped in oiled skins, the object they had been looking for: The [Isbari Glaive].
The Glaive, being a tool of mystic warriors, was given to Anast to carry and party headed back out of the Morass. As they slept, slinging themselves to saplings in a stand of trees, Kiera awoke to find a serpentine creature coiled around her legs. She was so startled by the surprise that she cried out, sending the creature bolting off into the marshes, carried along on two legs, to the surprise of the party. Though Kiera called after it, the shock having worn off, the nocturnal visitor disappeared into the Morass.
Later that day the party arrived at the Shantytown. They told ben Yaza of their discovery, and were told that Suriel had been asking after them around town, telling the townsfolk that he had something the party wanted, something he would be willing to trade for “something I want”. The party decided to first visit the laCarn place to see what Ben’s thoughts were on the subject, but they arrived finding the house is disarray, both Ben and Ilsa missing, and several horse-tracks leading away from the house to the east. Suriel had taken the laCarn’s.
Not willing to see anything happen to those who had been so kind to them, the party headed for G’s compound, and found Suriel, Cor, and their hired thugs waiting for them. As the party approached through the main gates they saw that the thugs had crossbows and muskets trained on them, while Cor and Suriel reclined against the main house. Through the open doors they could see the laCarns bound and gagged in the great room of G’s mansion. As the party drew nearer, Suriel tossed away his chagah and began addressing the party. Despite Suriel’s assurances that he only wanted the information given to them by ben Yaza (even over and against the treacherous suggestions of Cor), the party dispensed with talk and prepared to attack.
The fight was quick and brutal. Suriel attacked with the force of the shadows themselves, and Cor used his horns and fiery breath, but to no avail. Cor fell to the party’s attacks, as did the thugs in the courtyard. His defenses fallen, Suriel cloaked himself in darkness and escaped on a waiting horse at the rear of the compound, killing one of his own escaping hired-guns in the process. The party rescued the laCarns and headed back to town. In town they threw a massive party, using the leftover wine recovered from G’s ranch. The party began to disperse throughout the group. Sullivan Keth, badly injured by a spear thrust, lay recuperating at the laCarn Ranch, where Anast talked with laCarn about the realities of destiny and goodness. Kiera, unable to enjoy the festivities, went for a walk. While wandering through the hills around town, she noticed two heavily armored individuals riding quietly but purposefully southward, toward the Shantytown. Worried about reprisals from Suriel and Mr. G, she gathered the handful of party-memebers she could find in the festivities, and she, Mot, Ipster, and Nuana Kornis headed toward the Shantytown as quickly as they could.
They arrived at the Shantytown to find the two riders welcomed with open arms into the tent-city. The townsfolk were unloading what looked like food, seed, tools, and other provisions from the two men’s mounts and from a pack mule they had with them. Childe ben Yaza introduced the older man, dressed in plate mail adorned with sigils of St. Cyprian, to the party as Sir (Leorn Shard), and the younger as his associate, Ian Salzen. The party talked with (Leorn Shard) late into the night about the importance of being a light in the darkness, the tenets of the Order of Saint Cyprian, and (after they were joined by Anast) what to do with the Isbari Glaive. After the talks ended the party rested in the secure surroundings of the Shantytown, and they each dreamed again of the hoary man in the dry lake bed. When they woke the next morning to the sounds of singing around the sigiled tree, they found new abilities awakened in each of them.