About three days into their journey, the party faced one of the storms which gave the Gulf of Storms its name. While this storm was fairly mild compared to some, the party’s sloop was hardly equipped to handle torrential conditions. The vessel rocked and swayed in the sleet and hail, several men fell overboard, and the party did everything they could to brace the ship and steer the vessel out of the dangerous waters. In the end their ship remained afloat, but the hail and ice damaged the ship’s masts and rigging to the point that there was no choice but to make port at the nearest landmass.
On the horizon the party spotted a convenient volcanic island. Due to overcast conditions and to what the party could only deduce was magical tampering, the party had no idea where they were. The island turned out to hold many more secrets than they were expecting.
A beached Imperial Galleon was found on the island shortly after making camp on its sandy shoreline. A light snowfall added a slight cold to the air as the party and their crew attempted to strip down the galleon, or rather the waterlogged skeleton of the galleon, and row the parts back to the Maiden to repair it. The ship’s gunsmith, Randolph Gunner, was placed in charge of monitoring this operation, as the bosun, Kuno, was busy exploring the island.
Kuno, as well as the others, soon discovered that the island was inhabited by several creatures. First, they encountered a wandering pack of vicious riding dogs. These creatures were hostile to the party, but not afraid of them. Later that evening, the party found themselves being stalked by an orc child, who quickly ran off when he was discovered.
When the party hiked up the dormant volcano the next day, they soon discovered that across from a large ravine, likely carved by a river, there was an active campsite, inhabited by tribal orcs. Since the fall, very few of these primitive tribal groups remain in the world, but for some reason, these orcs were alive and well, hunting humanoids and displaying their shrunken heads as trophies of the kill.
The party attacked the campsite and slaughtered the guard, the noise from which caused a loud and relentless drumming to emanate from a stone circle in the center of the site. The party was forced to retreat, but returned in eight hours to continue the push, slaughtering a group of trained warrior orcs, a horde of zombified orcs and their master, and a group of demons guarding the Malarium pools the orcs drew from, all the while the drums echoed across the mountainside.
With most of the site cleared, the party confronted the chieftan of the camp. He was an old scrawny orc, but just as the party arrived, a blood ritual he was performing transformed him into an aspect of the Ghede themselves. He was quite dangerous, particularly close up as he sapped life from those who received healing near him as well as when he bloodied enemies, but the party was able to defeat him without casualties.
When they defeated the chief, the party found themselves in a strange trance. For a brief instant, they relived a memory of their past, and within that memory they were encountered by the incarnation of Baron Samedi, the Loa of death. He explained to each player how the orc chieftan was a champion of his, and that they had proved themselves to be rewarded the gift of a prophecy.
The eight fingered man harkens to the raven’s call. A frozen journey awaits those who follow it. In a house of shadow rests the raven’s treasure, but the housekeepers are closer than you think.
Soon it would appear that the prophecy was unfolding.