Alas, it is a dark day for the Temple of Keyn. Our grandmaster, Grandell, has passed on from this world. But let me start at the beginning.
Come the hour of our departure, quite the large group had gathered at the town gates. Three of my brothers, Mikkin, Joffren, and Zed joined us, as well as a half-dozen students of the temple and several townsfolk. Also one women with a pet bird who I didn’t recognize from town, but I’d take all the help I could get.
Unfortunately we weren’t long out of town before our party was set upon by beasts. Two ogres emerges from the woods and quickly dispatched several of our group, including my good friend Joffren. We were able to rally and defeat the brutes, but not without great losses. It was only then I realized I was a fool to let untrained townspeople join this venture, and asked them and the students to return to town. Several left then, but others refused and wished to press on, so press on we did.
We arrived at the valley of Kaghal within a few hours, only to find a landslide blocking our entrance into the valley’s floor. Suspicious this was Grandell’s attempt to keep us out of harm’s way, we tried to find another way into the valley. Mikkin proposed we send a probing party into a nearby cave in an attempt to find a throughway.
We split the group up, with myself, Zed, the remaining townsperson, a young man named José, and the woman with the bird, whose name I learned is Adanessa. Mikkin and the students remained without, while our smaller party delved into a nearby cave. It didn’t take us long to discover the cave’s inhabitants were goblins, and not too keen to see us in their home. We were able to take a few of them by surprise, though one almost escaped us. We eventually stumbled into a mess hall of sorts, and our stealth quickly dissipated. In the ensuing skirmish, we knocked out almost two dozen of the ruffians, and I am somewhat ashamed to admit I got a bit carried away in the fray. In the aftermath, we were able to detain one of the goblins and somehow communicated with him in order to determine the direction of the exit. Granted, it was straight in front of us, so the game of charades was probably not necessary.
As we emerged from the cave into the valley’s floor, we saw ahead of the ruins of the Keep of Kaghal actively falling apart! and I knew we had to make haste if we were going to come to Grandell’s aid in time, so we abandoned the plan to go fetch Mikkin and the students. We ran in to the keep’s courtyard to find Grandell and The Dragonknight exchanging blows, but before we could assist, the villain noticed us and summoned some creatures to hold us off. By the time we dispatched his minions, Grandell had been defeated. The Dragonknight quickly fled, that coward, assuring us on his way that Grandell was no more. Tragically he proved to be correct, but Grandell was able to pass on some enigmatic last words to our party. He told us that we had to find a monk named Euric, and that we needed to protect him.
We regrouped with Mikkin and the students, and prepared for the funeral rites. The three who fought alongside me returned to the Temple ahead to report the events as we witnessed them. The priests there were very surprised to hear about Grandell’s request; as it turns out Euric is a priest himself, though he is almost never at the Temple. Apparently he is fascinated with medicinal study, and frequently travels out into the world in search of new reagents and local wisdoms. But he is also known to be quite the survivalist, more than capable of holding his own out in the wild, so they were unsure as to why he would require protection. Nevertheless, the priests agreed this matter required immediate attention, especially when considering that without Euric present, the priests could not elect a new grandmaster. The priests requested I depart to find Euric as soon as possible, which I of course accepted. Seeing their mettle in battle, as well as due to the fact they were present for Grandell’s death, I asked my cohorts Zed, José, and Adanessa to join me in my quest, which they graciously accepted.