The morning continued, Althaea discovered that she could assume the form of beasts, Roscoe went to gather information on his companions, and Ygritte kinda just… chilled out. After a lunch getting to know each other, the previously captured cleric, Eli Morgood, revealed that right before the gnoll attack the miners had pierced through a wall and plans were made to go into said mine and uncover what secrets lie underneath.
Deep in the mine the wall was broken down to find ancient paved hallways on the other side. The hallways lead to a strange stone room much like the sandstone room they found under Summerwood. Instead of a gem however, a single brass gauntlet stood in its place. While inspecting the room and the gauntlet Roscoe and Kairos Trip Eli forward into suspected danger. In response, Eli declared that he wanted nothing to do with such people. No danger was to be had; it seemed the room was dormant. Roscoe retrieved the gauntlet without any molestation or any traps triggering.
Once out of the mine, an attempt was made to identify the gauntlet, but it was only marginally successful. Eli decided to go home and deliver the news of the attack to the families of his fellow miners and our adventurers decided to continue on their way.
Along the hilly path to the Crossroads, Ygritte encountered a lone wolf fending off a small pack of hyena. After rescuing the wolf she took it in to care for it and bond with it. To Gideon’s trepidation, Ygritte decided to keep the wolf, naming it Gambit.
Sometime after midday the group came to the flat plains surrounding the Crossroads. Moving quickly and stealthily, they advanced closer and easily dispatched a couple lazy sentries. They regrouped and moved around to the entrance of the Crossroads waystation where they encountered a large sac of flesh, teeth, and limbs moving towards them; behind it, a large rip in reality.
They engage the monster with the gaping maw and after a short time, two gnolls surfaced through the tear, revealing it to be a portal. It didn’t take long for the group to deal with the two gnolls and the maw monster, and after defeating the latter they noticed that its pooling blood had some interesting properties. Anything that they dumped in the blood pool (twigs, dead gnolls, urine) eventually sunk into the blood and disappear.
Kairos immediately stepped through into the portal, the other adventurers rooting through the Inn, the Pheasant Plucker, and nearby stables. Once on the other side, he and Gideon (who eventually followed) found themselves in a strange land. Before them stood several more gnolls, another maw monster, and a large bright green gem at the center of a strange altar. A short conversation later, Gideon ran back through the portal, pursued by two of the gnolls. Kairos and the rest of the enemies followed, and combat resumed on the Material Plane. As the battle ensued and enemies fell, Kairos went back into the portal and took the gem out of its holder. On his way out, he noticed that the objects that had sunk into the blood of the maw monster ended up in a thick, red liquid at the base of the altar. Without the gem in its place, the portal closed.
After the combat, the party cleaned up, dumping the bodies into the black liquid and then scooping up the liquid afterwards. The adventurers settled in for the rest of the day and into the night. Althaea’s misgivings got the best of her and Kairos’ newly acquired vial of liquid was lost. Kairos, looking through all the dead in the inn, found one body that had on robes that matched what the mysterious Marinton attacker had on. With that body there was a note directing a meetup either in or near Eaglereach. What was to happen next, the adventurers would decide in the next morning…