Recorded by scholars studying the life of Vilsis.
2 Sorrow in the Year of the Wind’s Reverence
After making introductions, Choum explains that he is looking to hire a party to track down a certain individual who is in possession of an artifact that House Shom is interested in acquiring. He is reluctant to share any further information until the party commits to taking on the job. Despite some initial skepticism about Shom’s motives, the group agrees to join together an accept the job.
Satisfied with the commitment, Choum goes on to explain that a man named Felix from a small farming village of Bellinga had arrived in Tyr with an ancient sword that he found buried on his family’s land. He met with several merchant houses in Tyr, including House Shom, none of whom apparently offered him an acceptable price for the item. Choum says that he offered Felix 5,000 dragons for the sword, but was ultimately prepared to pay 10,000. Choum was expecting Felix to return the following day, at which point he would offer him the full price (and then go on to sell the item for much more, potentially in another city-state).
However, Felix never showed up for this meeting. Questioning the Golden Inix’s half-elf bartender, Rowan, Choum discovered that Felix had hurried into the Inix, extremely scared or distressed, quickly paid the bill for his lodging, and left with his belongings. Rowan says that Felix mentioned heading towards home, and that he was carrying a bundle on his back that looked roughly sword-shaped.
Choum offers to pay the party 1000 dragons to bring back Felix and the sword. However, if the party only brings back the sword, he will pay them the full price for it: 10,000 dragons. He explains that Bellinga is located northeast of Tyr. It will require about 5 days of travel to reach, starting on the merchant road to the iron mines, but eventually heading into the mountains.
After negotiating an advance from Choum (he provides a pouch that the party ultimately opens to find 200 dragons), the party bought food, water, and budget sun balm for 7 days of travel.
The trip north on the merchant road, including a night of camping, is uneventful.
However, not long after leaving the road and heading through the mountains, some party members notice a shimmering substance stretched across a rocky pass. They are able to recognize this as the web of the Crystal Spider. Despite a nagging sense that these beasts hunt on the ground, Birel Windchaser threw a stone at the web, leading one spider to move out into the open.
As some of the party attacked the spider through its web, others took on the short, but deceptively slippery slope to the top of the rocky outcroppings on either side of the slope. From here, a second spider was sighted. In the ensuing battle, most of the party was temporarily blinded (some more than once) by radiant beams shot from the spiders’ abdomens.
On the recommendation of party members well versed in crystal spider physiology, Vilsis took advantage of the spiders’ inherent vulnerability to thunder damage, firing arrow after arrow infused with elemental thunder spirits. A few of these arrows actually hit spiders. Meanwhile, finding himself atop the ridge and flanked by the two beasts, Bost valiantly struck one of the spiders to the floor of the pass below, shattering it to pieces. Unfortunately, before the second spider could be vanquished, it blinded and then bit Bost, infecting him with crystal venom. The poisoning quickly put him into a coma, and nearly killed him but for a last-minute healing intervention by Birel.
The crystalline webs ended up being quite new and had not entrapped any prior travelers. For their trouble, the party salvaged no treasure.
After taking time to rest and allow Bost to regain his vigor, the party continued toward Bellinga. After five days of travel, on 7 Sorrow, they arrived to find several men congregated around a trading post in the center of town.