This site is an online accumulation of the Post Reports for my current ongoing D&D Campaign - for anyone who might be interested in reading them.

Tuesday, April 25, 2017

Meet 14, Adv 3, 4/8/17

At this point the party is out of the small pan and in the larger over - and it's time for some town adventuring and world building. For now they've been reactive to whatever I set up before them, but for this adventure, Want Ads, they have some greater freedom and the ability to see how the world works around them in this northern, dwarven run area.

I like Sorton as the DM, but I'm not sure I'd like to live there as an inhabitant.

Write up follows:

After 2 plus weeks of training, on Heatmonth the 24th the party has left Thak behind, travelling westward along the Traderoad Highway at long last on their way to Sorton. The types of jobs and potential earnings in the ancestral hill dwarf city out strips anything the group could possibly acquire in Thak. However, the Reeves of Sorton help control the types of employment opportunities that could be given to non-residents, and without some letters of recommendation and good faith, the chance to the group getting any sort of material or steady work is pretty poor. That was why the group’s efforts for House Darbeard was so critical and explains why the precious letters in Korsdottr’s, the caravan master, strong box are so important for the party.

The hope is to get to Sorton, make their case to the Reeve, and get some mercenary work for 2-3 seasons for some established guild, bailiff, house, or group that would keep the party in employ, pick up their training costs, give them a roof over their head, and eventually enough of a grub strake that they can use to trip down the Enderlyn River, outfit themselves in Erylond, and then make their way at long last to Bork Keep and the Terror Dungeon to carve their names in legend.

The Moratian Mountains stretch towards the sky like ancient giants, thousands of feet tall, their peaks clad in sparkling snow even in the warmest summer days. Stately pines and sky snaring oak trees blanket their slopes with carpets of greenery. The Traderoad Highway threads its way ever westward, sliding and slipping between the base of the mountains as it moves inexorably towards the no longer distant dwarven city of Sorton.

The city is built on the slopes of and right into the base of the majestic Mountain known as Jarl’s Tooth; the samesuch place the Jarlborrin Dwarves take their clan name from. The Enderlyn River rushes along the western edge of the city, leaping and spraying its way out of the Moratian Mountains and ever eastward from here. Sluice gates and massive cuts in the bedrock redirect a portion of the energetic river until it slams into great wooden water wheels that have been set up to capture the millions of racing gallons. These wheels, the largest being 70’ in height, take the overshot water and in turn power whatever machinery the dwarves have milling away inside the mountain’s secret heart.

The far eastern slope of Jarl’s Tooth is a terraced area of farms and crops, even from this distance you can make out hundreds of fat boars snuffling their way around. There is a huge hill in the center of the city that sticks up over the heavy stone walls that protect Sorton from attacks and invaders. Doughty dwarves and other races can be seen manning the walls and watchposts, elaborate ballista and loaded trebuchets ready to unload their payload if need be.

There is a queue of people looking to get in to the city gates, and it looks like the roustabouts make the grand area and concourse in front of Sorton free of beggars, shanties, and loiterers. We made our entrance after getting waved in by the gate guards on their noticing Korsdottr. We were given a short “Welcome to Sorton” speech where we were informed that arm and armor were limited to Slagbottom and the Randari Quarter – anything past Central Gate was a no no as long as armed or armored.

We were advised to go to the Third Reeve and then get a room at the Pennywhistle.

So we travelled our way in to the Dwarven city, home to 12,000 souls, and meandered up Grand Boulevard. The city is clean, like ridiculously clean. Sanitation crews in noticeable white pants keep the cobbles well swept. Local law enforcement were well armed and armored groups referred to as Bluecapes (as evidenced by their tabarded cloaks). About half the populace was dwarven, 30% was human, 15% was a mix of half orc, half ogre, and orcish, and the other races were a smattering at best.

We get to the Third Reeve Theros’ Office and Korsdottr arranged our meeting not with the clerk, but with the Reeve himself. The letters of conduct was passed over, read, and the Third Reeve seemed pleased. He accepted that we were going to stay 2 or 3 season and wanted us to succeed. Sorton has a strict 100% employment policy. The exceptions are of course infirm, children, and the venerable – but otherwise, everyone works at something.

There are 8 sections of the city: Slagbottom (out of towners, sellswords, mercs), Randari Quarter (typically orcs and ogres – but not limited or ghettoed) then there was Central Gate that led to Central Quarter (merchants, trade, and guild halls – temples and the like, as well as the great open Tradegrounds) and Undercliff (section near the river below the cliffs – industrial center and factories), then it was Upper Gate that then led to Cobble Hill (middle class residential), Overcliff (upperclass residential), the Terraces (terraced farms and farming – 9 tiers, boars and pigs figure heavily), and finally there was Jarl’s Gate and that led to Sorton Proper – the area just outside the great cavern and the inner caverns of Jarl’s Tooth where it was dwarves only and the ancestral home of the Jarlborrin Dwarves.

The hope was to set us up with a merchant house of mining house that needed K’Morat nests to be neutralized and we were thrilled for the opportunity. He’d let us know in a day. Also, since we do not have work, we MUST show up at the Reeve’s Office by 8 AM every day (no later than 10) and see if something comes up.

From here we left (after bidding Korsdottr farewell and getting 18 nobles each as our final pay), and went across the street to the Pennywhistle. 4 stories tall, huge, boisterous. The main room/common room was set up like a long hall and with 2 bars could seat 300. A roped off area was set up for wrestling or fighting, a few minstrel stages, even a couple of tables where card games were taking place. Some “ladies” were walking around but given it was 3 or so in the afternoon, they were not the best looking women around. There was some drinking and Avulstein had a shot of spirits, falling on his ass instantly buzzed.

We went to the back and arranged two rooms (8 and 4) with the proprietor, a rough and swarthy looking dwarf named Curd. The place was a goldmine and even though Sorton was a “lawful” city, Curd was a businessman making his way anyway possible. There was a drug the girls were on called “dust” which gave you extra energy but sort of “dulled you out”. A hit was given to Avulstein who pocketed the dust without taking it.

Once we went to our rooms we verified the locks works, left off our arms and equipment and decided we would split up on a variety of errands and meet back here tonight for dinner after 6 PM. Earlier, Darius had written to his mother and gotten the ok to come by for early dinner so he was going to visit Overcliff, and Larry who also was from here had written to his family and was coming to visit them today in Cobblehill.

But for now, we left the Pennywhistle and Einar walked around first – deciding to visit the Randari Quarter on the east side of Grand Boulevard and see what was what. The orcish quarter was jusat as clean as the other parts of town we had seen, except the main difference was the sheer pride the orcish community had and the number of them. Everyone was “Hello Brother” and “Hello Sister” with one another, a feeling of community was strong. Non orcish (or ogrish) people were waiting patiently for “their” turn and it was sort of nice to be part of the larger majority community.

Einar did wander his way further and further into the back of the Randari Quarter. The entire city was built on the slopes of Jarl’s Tooth so the refuse, gutters, and filth did run down hill and eventually through the Randari Quarter and Slagbottom before ending up dumped into the Enderlyn River. So as Einer got closer to Cobblehill, the slope was increasing and the number of people on the streets was dropping . This was the poor quarter close to the Cobblehill/Randari Quarter Wall. The smell was strong here as the refuse coming down from Cobblehill was gathered in sewers here and then fed through culverts at the base of the wall.

Einar was interrupted by two orcs and half-orcs who wanted to know who he was, what he was doing here, and what he was looking for. At the culverts, two dim half-ogres with long billhooks were pulling stuck much and crap through the culverts as well as opening the gates and fishing out crates that were being smuggled into the Randari Quarter without going through the gates – black market? Illegal goods? Don’t know, Einar wasn’t going to stick around to find out, and let the two “watchers” lead him away from the area where some drink was shared along with a tasty bacon sandwich.

It was Avulstein who had the next moment in the spot light. The budding necromancer was heading to Central Quarter where he split from the rest of the group travelling with him and made his way to the Vault of the Heorot – the charnal house, burial vault, and holy sepulcher to Hel, goddess of the dead. He had been advised there was a Deathspeaker here named Parylis and Avulstein would be best off in meeting with him.

Upon entering, he was greeted by a Witness for the Dead who was trying to impress upon Avulstein the importance of lighting a candle, making an offering to Hel, and a moment of silence. Avulstein had little patience for it, instead name dropping Parylis and wanting to talk to him. The Witness was willing to pass the information along to the next rank up (a Watcher) and eventually an audience was granted.

Avulstein was led deep into the back halls and deeper levels of the Vaults of Heorot where eventually he had audience with the not one, but all 3 Speakers for the Dead. Parylis was a necromancer, 60+, body twisted and covered in lesions but had a burning fire about him. Marcia was a dwarven death priest, that ageless 200-350 year age look that dwarves get, austere, cold, pale, matronly and above everything. And the last was Paduntosis, and let’s call it what it was – an animated corpse, a twisted mockery of life, and undead magic user, a lich.

Avulstein was out of his element and punching above his pay grade right now.

They talked for a bit, all three of them about the goddess Hel, the nature of magic, the hereafter, and the dead from Nifleheim. Being under the tutelage of a Speaker for the Dead does translate to either the temple of Hel or the Arcane Academy (Mage’s guild) should and when Avulstein eventually leaves Sorton.

One of the things the Speakers tried to impress on Avulstein is that Hel is both good and evil, both sides of the great war. She watches over Nifleheim, where the dead go who were not chosen by the Valkyries. So she ends up with the weak, the lesser, the cowards, those who claim they are better than they actual are. And those kind are afraid of their own death so will often look to escape Hel and return to Midgard.

Hel is Loki’s daughter, and Loki cannot be trusted. So for a guardian of the dead, why is it even possible for any mage, priest, or shaman to summon the spirits of the dead? If Hel was as tight a guardian as she claimed/s to be, there would be no chance for any necromancer to ply his craft. But we do and can. Why?

Because Hel is constantly looking for the weak, the lesser, the ones who claim they are better than they actually are. And that is the eventual downfall to any necromancer or death priest – the day they think they are better/smarter/more powerful than the Goddess they profess to follow.

In order to take Avulstein on and eventuially get the man some 2nd level spells, Parylis is willing to help, but wants Avulstein to gather some stuff for him in return. He has 4 days. On heatmonth the 30th by 2:30, he must return to the Vault and present to Speakers:  1) Beard hair from a female dwarf, 2) a cup of midnight water, 3) the final breath of a dying child, 4) The promise of a dead man, 5) pint of blood from a living boar. He is told to get them the best of his ability but know always the Hel’s eye will be upon him and will know if he fails. He is allowed to have help of course, but the efforts should be his own.

Friday, April 21, 2017

Fluff

I don't like to post fluff, but this caught my attention. So share:


Meet 3, Adv B4, 4/1/17 - Youth Group

One of the youths couldn’t make it to this meeting, change of season colds and being sick making their way around everyone’s family over time. So it was 2 at the table and I NPC’ed the not here Cleric for the time being.

This meant that there were 2 making decisions and somewhere along the way, it was decided that they were going to be more diligent and exacting in their exploration – not leaving any room unexplored and following all the leads wherever they may go. So instead of just going to the stairs down from level 2 after the stirge fight, they went exploring over the rest of the level first.

Write up follows:

Delsin tried to knock the stirge off of Volkan but was unsuccessful; and then Volkan was struggling to pull it off, but also with no results – the grappling flying menace had it wing claws and talons tangled in the mage’s robes. So they were yelling for Safir to shoot – even though it was stuck to Volkan and it meant that a bad miss could kill the mage.

But the archer took aim and let his shaft fly – and it pierced the stirge in the side causing it to squeal and deflate – allowing the mage to tear it free. With 2 left, one flying one hopping about the floor, Delsin found himself hit by one of the stirges when it found a weak place in his armor and the other made to escape.

We helped the fighter finish the last fighting stirge off and then the group went around stomping on them to make sure they were crushed and dead. From here we looked over the room and amidst the trash the stirges had been using as nesting material in the center of the room, we did uncover 4 small gem, 2 sapphires, 1 emerald, and a diamond. We split up the loot and then took stock of the situation. Delsin took a small draught and the group looked over the room for anything interesting, coming upon another secret door, this one in the north wall.

We used some rope to weave through the missing handle holes, and then Delsin and his strong back had the door open and we could look through. The passage went left and right, the right heading back some 15 paces to a door (which according to our best guess is the same door as originally found in the fire beetle room) and left it went a short distance and then turned to the right and went north.

We discussed it and decided we’d come back to the stairs down after exploring the level to make sure we missed nothing and went left and then north. As we travelled we went slow, looking for any secret doors or something of interest. We lit an actual torch at this point to go along with the glowing beetle sack we were using for light. Eventually the corridor did continue after looping about, with so far a single door on the south wall.

It was a storage room and although we poked around, it was very dusty and shown it hadn’t been used for a very long time. We left after taking a drink or two and continued down the corridor. The passage meandered about, heading east now, and although it did continue, there was another door here, this time on the left side/north wall. Once more Delsin was elected to open up and check it out.

After making sure it wasn’t trapped, the fighter gave the door a single pushed and looked in. The room was lit by maybe 10 flying 2’ tall winged people talking to each other in some sing song musical language. He backed out and we talked about what he saw, eventually deciding that we should try to make contact with them.

Volkan started off by trying to talk with them but the fairies could only reply in song and twinkling music. 5 of them joined hands and a cycling of power flowed through them and then we could understand them! The one who talked to us was very open to chatting, identified itself as a number, and would often parrot back our answers in the form of a lilting question. There was another room down the hall and we should go “see” it. They don’t get involved with Gorm, Usimagaus is the best. And yes, they do know lots of magic.

Volkan was hoping to learn some of their spells or curses when the one we were talking to grew bored and another came and spoke to us (#5). He was different, a bit more curt, and not interested in making friends. Delsin was getting nervous during all this, seeing the fairies getting less helpful as time went on, but Volkan pressed on for some help in learning the fairy curse spell. We managed to trade one of the fire beetle glowbags for some flash powder and were going through the motions to get some roman candles as well.

Then #1 came forward (identified as a jerk by the others fairies), threatened the group and Volkan, and a five count were ordered to “curse this magic user”. They cycled some power again between them and Volkan managed to jump away in time when the ground below his feet turned to black oily tar. Safir fired into the room trying to break up the fairy ring, and for this, the fairies were gathering themselves for another blast of magic. One of them was stabbing the party with his tiny sword and then we took the lit torch and hurled it forward and into the open crate that had the fireworks.

The room exploded. Everyone inside the room near the box was killed outright; everyone else was shaken and stunned by the blast. When we picked ourselves up, we were deafened and partially blinded, but one of the fairies was trying to escape and we failed to stop it as it flew down the corridor and made its way elsewhere.

Eventually our hearing and vision returned and we took stock of ourselves. The fairies had been obliterated in the burning remains of the chamber, so we closed the door and cleaned ourselves up, Volkan taking the heat for pressing the #1 fairy into talking to him and trying to get some information out of them.

We went towards the end of the corridor now, seeing it ended at a door on the right (the scent of vinegar was strong and in the air) and there were 3 4’ jars at the end of the hall. What were in the jars? We thumped them and tested it out, eventually taking the covers off – and it was sand. Was there something in the sand? We tried sticking a sword down in the sand and even after shaking it about, couldn’t find anything in the jars.

Maybe it was lower? Whatever “it” might be? So we cracked one of the jars and stepped back…and sand spilled out. Lots of sand, nothing else. We did the same with the other 2 jars – also just sand. Ok. Three (originally) large ceramic jars of sand. We took a small pouch full of the sand, tied it off, and turned our attention to the final door.

We opened the door and looked in. The room was very acrid, our eyes were already tearing. It also seemed to step down a few inches. The floor of the room was covered in some slimy green residue. Not wanting to chance touching it, we borrowed Mark’s lever and tapped the surface of the green muck. The lever began to smoke and hiss and pulling it free showed the end was acid scored as the slime continued to eat the lever! We dropped it in the slime and watched as it smoked and popped and then dissolved away in only a few minutes.

Screw that.

Delsin took another torch, lit it, and let it fall into the slime. It flashed into fire and the party backed away shutting the door and holding our nose under the edge of our cloaks to keep the smell and most likely toxic fumes from taking us down.

Eventually (10 minutes?) we went back, opened the door, and saw the slime had burned away. The vinegar scent was mostly gone and the room now had just lumps of char dotting it. Mission accomplished.

We followed Safir back to the original secret door and went down the corridor until we arrived at a set of steps behind a door going down. We drew up into marching order and took the steps one at a time until we arrived at the bottom of the steps. To avoid any issues, we removed the robes and tabards of Gorm we had gotten from Kanadius (Safir understood and was ok with it, Mark tucked his holy symbol down but did not remove it), and opened the door.

There was a long corridor here heading south and we followed it along, some 25 paces until it turned to the left and traveled east. It was while we were walking, to the best of our guess 90’ WITHOUT another door or corridor until it turned to the left again and went north that Delsin was convinced that we had to have missed something.

So we went back down the hall and started to look for any secret doors…getting lucky at finding one about 1/3 of the way down on the north wall. We drew up into line and opened to door – showing some sort of storage room filled with foods stuffs and water – and there were 4 large beetles diving into the supplies!

Knowing how hard the fight against the fire beetles had gone, we wanted to be better set on this one, so we took some flash powder, had everyone turn their gaze, the lit it and tossed it in the chamber – blinding and stunning 3 of the beetles and only 1 closest to us made to attack. We lit one of the Roman candles we had gotten from the fairies and let fly as many flaming balls as we could go to the beetle. Having almost no effect.

Two of the beetles had run out of the room out the north door on the other side, but the 2nd was getting closer when the closest spat out a jet of the oily spittle it had been using on the boxes. It hit the group and BURNED, making the party moan and grow frustrated as the two beetled then started to charge at us. We decided to shut the door for now and then proceeded to clean the burning residue off of us and heal up. Our cache of draughts was getting dangerously low – we would need some and soon.

Going back to the hall we went back down until it turned to the north and proceeded until we arrived at an open door. Inside was another long corridor (beyond our light range) but on the wall were 8 buttons with odd symbols next to them. One of them, 2nd one down, was pressed in. We couldn’t identify the symbols and were at a loss of what they might mean.

Mark was going through his Gorm prayer book on the off chance that one of them night be in there and he found one! On an older map in the back of the book that showed the Sinai Peninsula the compass rose had the “north” symbol that looked like one of the symbols on the bottom of the column of buttons!

From there, with Delsin taking most of the lead, we tested out the button pressing which had the entire room move and rotate clockwise. It was through the diligent counting of passing doors, checking the corridors beyond (which were different with each button), going to the other end of the revolving room where another row of button were but these had a different button pressed in here (always 4 down or up from the other side of the room) as well as a door out, that we were able to identify the 8 buttons as the cardinal directions and ended our hypothesis by assuming we came in on the SOUTH button, so rotated the room 1 cycle to the SOUTH WEST button and stepped out.

We were in a short hall that ended at a statue of Usimagarus (winged child) and there were two oil beetles here (the ones we scared from the supply room) we ran at us coming into the hall down a south corridor and disappeared into a closed door room (the supply room).

Good job.

So we decided that we were going to ignore the statue for now, head down the corridor and proceed to the NORTH EAST corridor hoping to meet the Usimagarians and see what they had to say.

Tuesday, April 11, 2017

Meet 13, Adv 2, 4/1/17

This wrapped up the 2nd adventure for the group. If Squeeze and his cronies would have won, it would have been taken back to Brinster Demesne and tortured until the other half of the party could arrive with the Lord Marshall to help spring them. It also would have meant that perhaps Braddock could have made his escape with LOTS of ill gotten goods and escaped justice.

Didn't happen. Group was spot on and the Squeeze fight went south very fast for the NPC. And yes, I decided that even without a head and cooked, you can raise a still mostly whole goat from the dead.

Write up follows:

After verifying with Larry that the hand off the material to the Lord Marshall’s man went without a problem, Tropor Darbeard was almost exhausted with relief. He then invited the party out to join him and his wife, his man Savaris and his wife out to the Wooly Pegasus; perhaps the most expensive and best restaurant in all of Thak and the surrounding area.

So the group went back to the barracks, got cleaned up, bathed, and were each given a courtier’s shirt compliments on Tropor so they would at least fit the establishment. Einar was feeling weary from the journey and begged off, going to sleep early instead.

We arrived at the Wooly Pegasus, a stately 1 floor affair near the Myr Demesne. The building was heavy stone and whitewashed, the interior clean and brightly colored and lit as well; gold and silver filigree work was present on most of the surfaces. Normally it could seat 30, but even with our large dinner party, there was still half as many seats still empty.

The wait staff was on point, keeping our glasses and mugs filled, and the meticulously made food coming one course after the next. It was somewhere after the third course (a butternut squash soup) when we heard the angry sounds at the front door and the maƮtre de was shoved aside and around the glass block wall came Squeeze and a batch of hired thugs with truncheons held in their grasp.

Fuck. Again?

Wanted to know where we were, know we are here. Saw us and was promising to fuck us up. A quip was made that he was robbed recently? And then the group burst into action. Many of us ran for the doors separating us from the kitchen, Connal and Negan holding their ground enough to make sure Tropor and our companions as well as the wait staff and others dining here had a chance to try and flee out the back entrance.

As for the rest of the group, they fled through the back door to the kitchen but prepared themselves to stand their ground there. Larry turned to the meal prep area and yelled at the cooks to “get the braised goat off the damned oven now” while he gathered up knives and cleavers. Darius raced to the back by the oven itself and gathered up the 4 4’ long meat skewers there. Avulstein dropped his necromantic rats out of the bag he carried and commanded the skeletons to run back into the dining room. Negan called to Odin and dropped a 5’ tall demonic manes in front of Squeeze, stopping the ¼ ogre in place.

However Squeeze had his own guys with him and while the thugs were upsetting tables and knocking people down, a few chucked 2’ metal pipes at the two party members still standing there before a final one hurled a handful of rose petals forward and yelled some arcanic words.

Connal and Negan hit the ground sleeping.

The bad guys ran forward confident in finishing off the two sleeping members of the group. However, we were ready for them. Avulstein yelled to his rats to attack the sleeping party members while holding the kitchen door open. This allowed Darius to turn and hurl one of his skewers like a javelin, slamming it into one of the approaching thugs and causing him to scream. Our necromancer meanwhile tossed his scroll of animate dead animals to Larry who unfurled it while the cooks took the entire braised and cooked goat off the oven, still with the spit sticking out of it. Larry read the scroll and necromantic energies ran through the sorcerer/thief and then hit the goat.

Which stood up. Hooves missing, no head, cooked, and with a 4’ skewer through its body, it turned to Larry who started grinning madly. Meanwhile as Squeeze was figuring out his blows were ineffective to the manes, he picked it up and tossed it across the room with an angry crash. Then before the thugs could get close enough to coup de grace Connal or Negan, Avulstein’s rats hit them and did enough damage to wake the two men up so that when they were struck seconds later by the thugs, it was not the expected killing blows.

While Negan was grabbing at one of the guys’ legs, Connal rolled off the table and went toe to toe with the thugs in the area. Then Avulstein yelled out his own sleep spell through the door and dropped the thug mage and the throwing and beating thugs back there.

And then the damned undead goat came through the door, spring boarded off Negan’s chest, and drove the spear into the closest thug and then drove it to the ground, kicking it to death.

And that was the turn of the battle.

The thugs began looking for the exit as the distant whistles of the watch were being heard. Larry slipped on a chef’s coat and ran out the kitchen and through the dining area, pretending to be one of the cooks as he traveled behind the fleeing thugs on their way out of the Wooly Pegasus. A stab to a sleeping figure and then a stab at another fleeing thug was achieved before he hit the street and blended in.

The group surrounded Squeeze and after a few blows the Brinster’s man realized he was done and gave up, axe hitting the ground. The thugs were rounded up, Squeeze was taken into custody, and the Lord Marshall came to thank Tropor and the group for their efforts. He promised that a letter of recommendation would be sent with the party with his name on it.

We went back to the Wooly Pegasus, the wait staff comped the meal for Tropor, and due to the excitement, the remaining tables were filled. The party passed on the recently reanimated braised goat but it was served to the other patrons who were unaware of its…recent rising.

The next morning we all gathered outside the Brinster Demesne where Braddock, his 1st son, his controller, and another 4-5 count of his top men were arrested by the Lord Marshall. The next few days showed a trial where the upper men of the echelon were found guilty of a variety of charges and were going to Gorok where there would be placed to work at the Penal Copper Mines for a period of 10 years.

The Brinster Demesne would be under the stewardship of Cugan, the 2nd son (3rd child) who had nothing to do with the entire mess. The profits from the League deal would be divided out 75% to House Darbeard, 20% to Stoutbelly Mines, and 5% to Gerti Greatpick.

Squeeze was kept in the stocks for 4 days before he took the fall for the entire mess and was hung from the neck until dead.

The party is hoping to finish their training over the next 2 weeks and then catch the caravan heading to Sorton at that time.