So we stumbled around in the forest for a while, looking for a mound and finding nothing. We did find a nest of phase spiders, which are like normal spiders except they can disappear, and have an absolutely vicious poison that takes ten minutes to kill you. We didn’t realize they were phase spiders at first; the kid shot one with his bow and hurt it a bit, but I put in a solid hit with mine and it just bounced off. Something about the kid lets him hit the spiders when I can’t. Maybe he’s dipping his arrows into one of those poltices he is always talking about. I’ll have to watch him more closely, maybe I can learn something.
Anyways, my arrows weren’t going to do much and really I prefer using a sword, so I drew that. Before I could shrug my shield into place, a ghostly image of an old man appeared and started talking to me. He was trying to give me tips on swordsmanship while I was fighting the spider. I listened with half an ear, and it cost me. I landed a solid blow or two on the spider, but it bit me right in the gut, and its poison began eating away at my insides right away. U-Heury shattered another shield blocking a bite, but didn’t have time to draw his own sword and strike. None of the attacks from the others were doing anything; Stria had taken her magic daggers back to the city and sent Ygnis to take her place, but Ygnas didn’t have anything to hit the spiders with that was magical. (I meant to ask if she tried her frog-lighter, but I don’t think so).
Realizing that these things could kill us in a single bite and only two of the party couold hurt them, we chose to retreat. We escaped mostly because the spiders stopped to eat the corpse of the hireling, and u-Heury managed to make one of his poltices to cure the poison that was eating my guts from the inside out. Kid saved my life. Again. He did good, and maybe he actually knows his way around the outdoors.
The ghostly old man disappeared when I sheathed the sword, without saying anything much useful. He did say he once owned the blade I had, and that one of the other blades is in a prison. I need to ask the old ghost when he shows up next if a city elf is close enough to a ranger to wield one of the other blades. Not sure if Landon wants one, but he’s the closest to another ranger in the Glorious Blades at the moment. Feverborn already has a magic sword, even if he clearly doesn’t trust it, and if they are all like this I don’t blame him.
We spent a restless night after that, the kid dreaming of something about going south. When he woke up he said it was a message from the frog prince, and since we were trying to follow that map, we went south and looked around again over some of the same territory we had been examining before. This time, we found a small shrine done in the strange ways of the kid’s people. There was a burial mound with a small hollow section, a nearby well, and a small wooden structure. We accidentally destroyed the structure (oops), investigated the mound and killed three beetles inside. Their internal organs have a strange glow about them that will serve for torches.
After we fought the beetles, the others said I had an extra eye on my forehead. It didn’t seem to be anything I could control. We tried to communicate with it by writing on the ground,but it didn’t seem willing to cooperate. Eventually we decided to ignore it – after tearing some cloth into a bandana. For some reason that made me want to talk in a drawl and call myself Rham-Boh, but I managed to resist.
We rigged some ropes to a nearby tree and let them down into the well. The kid went first. He doesn’t lack for courage. I’m the only one strong enough to pull people up in full armor, so Ygnis is probably next. Then I’ll go back to town and send Feverborn to help them while I look into why my arm is still mostly ooze. It doesn’t really hurt, so I keep forgetting about it, but people are relying on me here. Between the sword ghost and the weird eye, I have some issues to sort out. The kid’s good, he’ll keep the rest of them safe. And Feverborn is no slouch either, even if he’s less savvy in the woods.