Zol – Barrakas 17th, 998 YK
Tuesday – August 17th, 998 YK
You are greeted below deck in the dining hall.
“Greetings, friends.” He says with anticipation. “What discovery have you made?” Sur’kil pauses and notices your marks.
“Oh, I see. You… have changed. Tell me what has happened? How did you obtain these marks? I must have a thorough account of the expedition. Please do not leave any detail out. I must know about everything, traps, creatures, anything of note.”
Kohl steps forward. “We were attacked by the Order of the Emerald Claw on our return from the Temple. They demanded that we give them something called the Dragon’s Eye. What trickery is this? How did they know of our return, Sur’kil?”
“Hmm… The Emerald Claw? Interesting.” Sur’kil ponders. “You say, they demanded an object named Dragon’s Eye… most peculiar. I am surprised. This is definitely an intriguing turn of events. I have no idea how they knew of your mission or your hour of arrival. Tell me what relics did you find?”
Sur’kil eyes each of you carefully, “This story reminds me of another tale from long ago. In the course of previous research, I learned of a group of explorers of the Q’barran peninsula. Five of the members of this group were said to have all simultaneously developed the so-called aberrant dragonmarks in the course of an expedition. Such an event would be rare enough, but one true dragonmarked among their number claimed to see her mark change in shape at the same time. What came of them, I do not know. I will need to some time to confirm the accuracy of this tale and to research your situation. Please, in the meantime take up stay at the One Eyed Parrot and feel free to resupply as needed. And here is the remainder of the gold you are due. You may meet me back aboard the Swiftwind tomorrow at midday.”
After a short discussion you retire until the next day and meet Sur’kil above deck.
The ship seems ready to sail, its bound elemental churning the water behind it. At the rail, Sur’kil looks pensively at the sea. His warforged guardian Pax is close by. As you approach he turns to face you.
“Welcome.” he says, “I have determined that this group of explorers of which I spoke was led by one named Jheamast, a Sarlonan. Jheamast and his companions were quite active in Q’Barra. While, no direct account hints at Jheamastor his band having visited the Temple of Kha’shazul, the congruence of his party’s manifesting the same strange marks that you have manifested seems clear.”
“Jheamast was said to have sought a weapon for use against some foe in his homeland of Sarlona. It is my belief that he must have claimed the missing relic—the one referred to by those Emerald Claw thugs as the Dragon’s Eye— from the Temple of Kha’shazul prior to your arrival. More than a thousand years prior, to be precise. If you are amenable, I would like to procure your services for another few weeks. I will increase your wages, providing you with an additional 500 gp each.”
You agree to his terms. Sur’kil continues.
“While the full truth of what happened to Jheamast and his party is long since lost, I have heard one rumor that I must share with you. Jheamast is said to have died in the Lhazaar Principalities some years after his time in Q’barra, but the Sarlonan’s companions who manifested these new and changed marks were all dead within a year of receiving them. It is said that at least one was apparently consumed from within by the power of the true mark she bore. Dark legends surround many who carry the so-called aberrant marks, and these tales of Jheamast’s party could be no less fanciful. However, if the legends are true, discovering why Jheamast lived might be your only chance for survival.”
“Seeking clues of Jheamast’s activities in the principalities will no doubt take some time. This galleon remains chartered for your use, and I will leave a supply of sending stones by which you can keep me apprised of your progress. I cannot accompany you, for I must make my way west in order to undertake further research on your new marks. You may visit any House of Kundarak to receive future payments each Zor. This note will allow you to make the withdrawal. Good luck. I await any updates. If you have nothing further I will make my departure. Farewell.”
Sur’kil nods to Pax and they both teleport off the ship, vanishing instantly.
“That was rather abrupt. Where do we go from here?” Morthos comments.