Shock & Awe
The party was called to help an anonymous “friend” learn more information about the Sand Lady. Once there, the bard who identified herself as Strings said she had been tracing this mysterious figure throughout history, and they were the last people known to have encountered her. This information had been relayed to her via her good friend Renenbach, the cat from their dealings in Freeing the Aspect of Avandra. Renenbach, then called Thunder by Crimsorn, had been living with Crimsorn the past five years.
Strings said that kobolds had been attacking recently, and there were rumours that they were somehow associated with the Sand Lady.
An elven archer named Ninaran was volunteered to show them around and help them out.
Their search led them to the kobold den. Outside they managed to capture a kobold who babbled endlessly in Draconic about the Sand Lady, and how he had never seen her, but she’d promised him a kiss. He seemed smitten. He also babbled something about a dragon. Sairis was able to trick him into thinking she was the Sand Lady. That and the kindness and food of Kirtur, encouraged the kobold to help them out and stay by their sides. He said his name was Snaggle. They also found a note on one of the bodies that was addressed to them and read, “Hi sweeties. -J”
Once inside the den, they fought Irontooth, a goblin who was leading the kobolds under the leadership of both someone named Kalarel and the Sand Lady. There was a note on his corpse from Kalarel regarding a rift being opened, and something about having a spy hidden in Winterhaven.
The party returned to the tavern to tell Strings what they learned. Sairis concocted an elaborate ploy to boost up String’s reputation in the area as an adventurer, and also sent messengers out (a male halfling, and female human, and a male human) to spread the word. Ironically, this ploy was originally designed to force Strings to join the party on their adventures in the future but it would prove to be largely unnecessary (much to the frustration of the plot’s mastermind, Sairis).
They discovered from the innkeeper that Strings had left with some friends to the old burial grounds.
Once there, they were met by a gnome who claimed he’d asked for String’s help with finding an old relic but she’d since left to find them. He was found to be lying, and the party was attacked. Shortly into the battle, the an enormous dracolich burst from the ground and started attacking; Sairis specifically. The humans excavating the area located the relic and the gnome tried to get it to a spectral apparition hovering over the excavation.
Strings had been kidnapped and Turin found her tied and gagged in the corner of the burial grounds, releasing her so she could heal the rest of the party who, by that time, had fallen.
The dragon was able to be convinced to fight for the party instead of against, and they quickly dispatched the enemies. After the fight, the dragon, Namenhotep, explained his plight. Two hundred years ago his soul had been trapped in that relic, a small mirror. When he held it up, a child’s voice said that she could see it, and she was scared. It would open in 6 months. Namenhotep had a vague memory of a childlike oracle from his time on earth, and the girl reminded him of her.
Snaggle was afterwards found to be missing.
The party returned to the inn, where Strings said she would continue to look into the goings on in the area, and notify them if anything came up. They still had six months, after all, till some sort of rift was opened.