Traveling together, Mauve Blackbriar and Sir Ulrich Draconis arrived in Denvorn one autumn evening and made their way to the Sly Huntsman tavern. Unbeknownst to them, two others were making their way there as well. The first, Jan, was a hunter and woodsman. The second, Will O’Freeport, was a wandering storyteller.
The four met in the tavern when Jan asked Mauve to dance, which she declined. Soon after, a young man approached them with a request. His name was Fritz, and he told them that his merchant father was willing to pay for retrieval of a very late package. They negotiated payment before setting off.
They made for Red Tower to the southwest of Denvorn town just as the sun was beginning to set. Jan discovered a thicket along the way, and was pleased to find it small enough yet that it didn’t need to be reported and destroyed. Using his woodcraft, Jan fashioned a goodly dead drop from the thicket, well-hidden and protected from interlopers. Mauve attempted one of the rituals from the arcanist’s manuscript, but only time will tell if it had any effect.
Jan lead them to Red Tower without incident, where Mauve harvested some of the red moss that had grown there since the eponymous maiden of Maiden Valley was imprisoned and killed there centuries ago. Will confronted Mauve—curious to learn more about the source of her magic. She was hesitant to provide detail.
Full night had fallen by the time they reached the grotto mentioned by Fritz, their employer. They approached the rocky hollow, but heard a horse just beyond the reach of Mauve’s magic light. She extinguished the light and the group hid behind boulders and fallen logs, just in time for an old woman to emerge from grotto. She had noticed them, whether or not she knew where they had hidden themselves.
Will stepped out to confront her with as much charm as any storyteller could hope to muster.