We lost a friend today. Let the earth from which he came, carry him forward with peace.
We headed north through the hills. Upon reaching the peak of a hill we spotted in the distance a large, displaced piece of earth. Actually I don’t think large quite describes the magnitude of it. We soon discovered, upon circling around to the west that there were several large estates (including their land holdings and a small forest)still upon the face of the displaced land mass.
With the aid of Arayas’ skills in climbing, we made our way up, through the oddly angled forest. We made our way to the southern-most house and entered through an upper floor window. It was quite precarious and disorienting. The walls had become the ceiling and floor (though everything was at an angle) and so there were windows below us and doors above. We made our way through the top floor without incident and found the stairs down at the top south corner of the building.
We descended along the wall next to the stairs. A rope was secured to a banister and Arayas lowered himself to explore one of the closed doors; Thoradin began climbing down the rope as well. Arayas opened the door and screeching caws echoed throughout the building. Peeking out around the edge of the wall I heard him yell that they looked like bird-people. I asked if they looked like crows and he said that they did. I thought that perhaps they were like the Kenku which we had encountered in the pit and could perhaps be reasoned with. By this point, the screeches had drawn others to the main hall. I tried to reason with the creatures but they did not speak common and we had invaded their home and so we fought.
Arayas seeing an opportunity, went through the door. That was the last anyone saw of him. Shortly after, one of the creatures followed him, closing the door behind. Our rope was cut and so we could not get to him in time. A few seconds later, after what seemed like minutes, the bird creature emerged again. I think we all knew then that he was lost. After a lengthy fight we were victorious. Yalda went to try and revive Arayas (after nearly falling out the front door to his death due to carelessness because he didn’t bother to tie a safety line). From his description, there was not much of Arayas left, nor much to bring back to town in case a family member or friend came looking for him.
Thoradin, after taking the time to tie a safety line explored the lower rooms. He found some gold and other trinkets that could prove useful later on. With that, we left the house the way we came. We descended the side of the mound.
As we had seen another, smaller chunk of land sticking out of the hills, we decided to go and see what we could see there while we were out here. It was much smaller and other than a few tunnels leading into the interior, there was not much to see. We returned to town.
Bert the compassionate man that he is noticed that we had returned with one fewer than we had left with. He poured us all a drink and we drank to Arayas. I wish him a peaceful death.