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The cleansing of Hotton

TITLE: The cleansing of Hotton

Backstory: In Ages past, some empires were mentally run by Kopru, which are chaotic-evil hot-water creatures chosen of Demogorgon, demon lord of madness. In the last century, there were stories that the pirates who inhabitated the area now known as the town of Hotton were lead by a cleric of Demogorgon. In current times, followers of Farnaz, demon lord of cooperation between demons, arranged for a devious [ironic word] scheme by which three kopru were brought to the small town of Hotton in the Northlands as the launching point of a wider control of land. A message was sent to a ship of the Hand of Hendus to entice them to pick up some interesting cargo, but the cargo was actually three kopru, who took mental control of the captain and crew. With three prepared Wilbar's Fish & Critters' hot-boxes, the ship transported the three kopru to to the town of Hotton, where this new little cult quickly took over the town, nine people each night. This scheme was all timed while the local high priestess of Thim was away from Hotton. Only two people were known to have escaped: one is an aquatic elf who was first mate on the ship; and the other being a seeming human "Tom" who was a separate member of the Hand of Hendus with a mental defense spell that protected him from the indoctrination magic ritual.
(Warning: Backstory admittedly includes some little assumptions.)

One-shot game

real-world: 27 July 2019 in Manhattan
Players: Korwin Briggs, David Thomas Chappell, Joel Green, Heather Smith

Telvar Date: July 2197

TITLE: The cleansing of Hotton

Backstory: In Ages past, some empires were mentally run by Kopru, which are chaotic-evil hot-water creatures chosen of Demogorgon, demon lord of madness. In the last century, there were stories that the pirates who inhabitated the area now known as the town of Hotton were lead by a cleric of Demogorgon. In current times, followers of Farnaz, demon lord of cooperation between demons, arranged for a devious [ironic word] scheme by which three kopru were brought to the small town of Hotton in the Northlands as the launching point of a wider control of land. A message was sent to a ship of the Hand of Hendus to entice them to pick up some interesting cargo, but the cargo was actually three kopru, who took mental control of the captain and crew. With three prepared Wilbar's Fish & Critters' hot-boxes, the ship transported the three kopru to to the town of Hotton, where this new little cult quickly took over the town, nine people each night. This scheme was all timed while the local high priestess of Thim was away from Hotton. Only two people were known to have escaped: one is an aquatic elf who was first mate on the ship; and the other being a seeming human "Tom" who was a separate member of the Hand of Hendus with a mental defense spell that protected him from the indoctrination magic ritual.
(Warning: Backstory admittedly includes some little assumptions.)

Adventure synopsis: The Stompers were returning from their latest adventure of destroying an Orcus-worshipping band of ogres when they stumbled across a running man "Tom" who had escaped indoctrination into the cult. He told them about the smiling cult in Hotton and was thoroughly scared of it and the town guards chasing him. The Stompers believed him and let him go after hearing his story. The Stompers tried to avoid interaction with the town, though Tove was seen during his excursion to explore, which netted valuable information. The Stompers explored the geyser vent just outside town because "Tom" had mentioned heat in the vile ritual, and Sabine the dwarf found in the geyser channel a secret door leading to a secret old pirate lair. The Stompers found the pirate treasure room (including three good-aligned religious magic items), an empty evil library, a secret entrance into townfolks' root cellar, and a chamber with an evil altar, some crabmen, and three large swimming creatures (which Vera correct deduced were kopru). Wistta (a monk of the Right and Unalterable Way) demonstrated proof that the cosmos provides what is need at the proper time and place to make everything turn out as it should be by pulling out of her magic robe the three exact items they needed to enable defeat of the kopru. On temporarily leaving the secret complex via the root cellar, Wistta used those three items to access the secret chamber in the temple of Thim where the acolytes and scroll library were maintained, and she had the knowledge to take the invaluable scroll of lower water in addition to some other scrolls. The Stompers planned their attack on the kopru, and it was a brutal fight. The lower water spell was crucial, as was blinding one of the three kopru. The kopru could cause fear, attack with their three stinger tails, and suck the life force of their charmed victims (the crabmen and cows) to heal themselves. After a tough fight and use of a fair amount of resources, the party killed the three kopru, at which point all the townsfolk awoke from their charmed state with no memories after being mind-controlled. A few days later, a ship of demon-worshippers arrived, expecting the town to be under control. Everyone in town played along, and the party's cleric (Melvin) used a token of regalia plus his already-high charisma to pretend to be leader of the town while everyone else smiled. The cultist leader from the ship agreed with Melvin's suggestion that we should party before performing the ritual to find the library with a great sacrifice. While most of the crew were drinking, an invisible Tove and Hendus captain simultaneously killed the demon-ship captain and first mate. The Stompers interrogated the crew to learn more. The cult was stopped, though there are a few loose ends. The Stompers are victorious but will forevermore have to live with Wistta's reminding them how this incident strongly demonstrates that they should trust her about how everything always works out like it should.

Party: The Stompers, level 6-7, 4 women and 2 men; mostly LG with a LN & NG member
Wistta the female human monk of R&UA (LN)
Vera Weathermay the female half-orc fighter (LG)
Sabine Bronzebender, female dwarven fighter extra-stronger
Tove Nesbit the half-elf thief/mage
Kate Black, the female human woodsman
Melvin Tellman, male human cleric of Silban; friend Kitten the Raven

Status: The Stompers are coming back to the town of Hotton in the Northlands' eastern coast after defeating a tribe of ogres who were worshipping Orcus. It is getting towards a full moon (waxing).


10 am - Kitten the Raven spots a figure ("Tom") running from the Hotton town guard. The Stompers catch him and talk friendlily with him, though he initially asks to be killed rather than inducted into the cult. He had come undercover from the Hand of Hendus to fuss at or beat up Karl for cheating on skimming/thieving on the deal he had to do smuggling with them. When asked, the man tells the adventuers to call him Tom. "Tom" tells the Stompers about a smiling cult in the town of Hotton that tried to abduct him, but special magic protected his mind. He was wearing makeup that is now partially melted, which fits his story about how he was abducted at midnight, blindfolded, taken down and up, and went to a hot, wet place for the cult's ritual. He also mentions a fancy, fast ship at dock flying an Ellman flag; the party considers if maybe this ship started spreading the cult or maybe they could be outside the cult's influence. This all seems sincere, especially to Wistta who has studied psychology. The smiling of townspeople stands out to the Stompers as weird because the townspeople are usually grim and gruff, and that makes them believe "Tom" more. The Stompers give "Tom" directions to another village nearby. Tom leaves.

12 pm - Things look ok in town from the Stompers' view on a hill nearby. Half the party sends an animal messenger seahawk with a note for backup to a Captain in a nearby coastal town.

6:30 pm - After some napping, the Stompers see that sometime in afternoon, a single-masted merchant vessel has been tied up in town, albeit with no sign of crew (odd) on board, which is odd. No one recognizes the ship's flag, which probably means it's a merchant company flag.

7:30 pm - sundown

8:00 pm - Tove goes into town to spy invisibly after dark.

9:00 pm - Tove sees four guys tied up in the tavern by nine townspeople. The townspeople are making horribly boring smalltalk for the most part, but at one point is is said, "within a week, the town will be more important and prosperous than we ever could have imagined". Tove stays there till 11pm.

11:05pm - Tove hears Wanda the barkeeper say its almost time for the party, which makes the townspeople excited. She says they will reveal to the crew how we're going to turn out so rich, and you'll have to trust us; she pulls out rope and blindfolds and long truss poles. One guy panics, though the others don't fight it. Lights are approaching from the central guard house. The group walks along shore towards north with torches. Tove follows. They approach three guards ("everyone will be on board again") who are happy to see them and open the doors of the last warehouse. They all go in, though Tove stays outside.

Tove looks at the nearby-docked Ellman ship, which has a hooded lantern lighting its deck. The still-invisible Tove decides to get on board. The ship is fancy and gorgeous. Tove finds a locked hatch and a large locked hatch to the hold. Barrels of water are on one corner of the deck--all pushed to one side. Stacked in one corner of the deck are weird stacks of metal (5' x 10'): they are huge collapsable boxes of some type. There is no sign of anyone on board. Tove pickes the lock to captain's quarters in the aft; inside is nice chambers with a workdesk. Tove finds an elaborate trap inside the quarters. Then Tove trips an alarm, and the ship's bell rings, which alerts guards nearby on the dock who see that a door in unlached and argue whether to tell the captain right away or not to disturb the ceremony. Guards mention a missing comrade (Note that "Tom" said he did NOT come on that ship), whom they say wouldn't come back because he's "not part of the cause". Tove uses magical ventriloquism to distract the guards. It was "Probably the damned aquatic elf" near the water, says a guard. Tove disarms and unlocks a drawer and takes two books and box from inside as well as papers from surface of desk. He makes a distraction to get off the ship, then runs into two other guards who see the invisible stuff. He casts sleep, but one guard at guard house outside range sees eight other guards fall, at which point a gong goes off.

Lights go on around Hotton, and more people with pitchforks run into the streets. Meanwhile, Vera is putting on her armor after a warning from Wistta that the ship bell rang. Wistta upon hearing gong moves to edge of cliff, throws her continual light coin down into the town as a distraction, and then she moves back to the hill to watch.

Tove is visible after casting sleep. He decides to climb a warehouse and then climb the adjacent cliff to get out of town and away. A few crossbow bolts hit Tove, who otherwise successfully climbs up the cliff and gets away.

Some townspeople come out of town and chase after the place from which Wissta threw the coin, but she and Vera manage to hide and get away. That scouting group included humans plus about six hulking brutes a little smaller than ogres (the Stompers didn't then know what they were, but they later turn out to have been crabmen).


Rendesvous next day noon at base a few miles from town.

Books and papers that Tove stole from the ship are written in Runic IV and Human. They are papers and contracts from "Waking Sun", and Ellman cruiser for rich people heading to Carse. One book written in code, would take hours to days to break and then start decoding; intuition is that it's the "real" logbook of the ship.

The small metal box from the ship is glyphed; the party dispels it and disarms one trap, but opening it triggers another alchemical trap that incinerates some coils of paper inside (about 200 characters each) yet does not harm the 20 diamonds (500 gp each) inside. Written on inside of the lid of box in Common and Runic IV: "You are now an enemy of the Hand of Hendus."

The party decides that it is unlikely but possible that "Tom" is the missing aquatic elf.

The Stompers scheme to go into the warehouse: cast sleep on guards, go in, wizard lock door, maybe block door with boxes, track to find secret door, go down. Stop them! In practice, though, before implementing this plan, they check another potential lead . . .

The party decides to investigate the geyser outside town. There is a one hour gap between geyser bursts. At dusk, the party sends Sabine down the geyser vent invisibly with fly and endure elements. As a dwarf, she can tell that the stone has been worked, carved out, and new minerals laid on it. Somebody got down here intentionally at some point. She sees the distorted edges of a stone door not designed to be opened from this side and encrusted by minerals from the geyser water. She estimates the door has not been opened in 20-100 years. The stonework is of comparable age (i.e., decades, not centuries). There are more natural chambers below in acidic water if one could swim. There are some strange hooks opposite the door, also not used in a while.

Sabine tries her crowbar on the door but fails to open it, despite her great strength. She uses her ring of the ram on it, and it makes a sound but doesn't open. She tries the crowbar again, but alas! She uses the last two [weekly] charges of the ring, which releases the door and a ladder to the top of the geyser across the shaft. It is from the days of the pirate settlement 120 years ago. Sabine sees more than 60 feet of passageway ahead.

Team comes back from scrub camp, arriving 10:15pm

Some stories of downfall of pirate settlement here say that leader was priest of Cult of Demogorgon (mad genius demon lord) and would lure horrible tentacled things from the depths to attack, but those are typically dismissed as fanciful tales.

The party debates and decides to wait a little bit to enter around 1:15am after any potential ceremony. They make their way up, and Kate sees some townsfolk the party just dodges heading towards where they were camped: the townsfolk were carrying weighed nets and clubs. The adventures avoid the townsfolk and get to the geyser. They lower Kate on a rope, and she gets ok down to the ladder and opens the door + ladder.

The Stompers go 120 feet down the corridor (all single file) and get to a branch of natural vs stonework passages. Looks like acidic water went down the natural path. They go the stoneworked way 100' before it opens into a cave. They use continual light coins to see; half the party members lack infravision.

In one chamber is a pool of bubbling acid with a boardwalk 3' wide that goes over the pool. They check for traps and see that there's a rotating part in the middle that one must step over. They are going over the boardwalk when Sabine notices indications that there's another covered door on a side of the chamber with a tiny platform beneath it. Magic would be required to jump over to it because it's at the edge of the acidic pool. The party decide to use their ring of jumping to get there, and then they crowbar it open. The room has pirate treasure, including hundreds of gold coins. Chests and boxes (one trapped metal box), in which we find a broad sword of Osprem (god of safe sea travel and regular tides), headband of Kor that blasts sunlight (turns out to be thrice a day), and some sort of religious ring.

They leave the treasure room and go back to the bridge. On the other side of the bridge, the passage leads 120' or so and ends on a secret door with a peephole. The chamber beyond is dark.

Beyond is a slightly worked chamber with ruined (dissassembled) furniture, and it feels wrong to Tove. A symmetrical secret door is on the opposite side of the room. To the left, stairs go down. To the right is a slashed once-fancy formerly-secret door. The chamber has a high dust level. It has been many years since someone has been in this room: years to a decade. In a few places, Kate sees signs of aquatic-elf bare feet from a few decades ago. They close the secret door the used behind them after checking how to re-open it from this side. Something feels wrong to Wistta about the smashed secret door, and there are signs of multiple horrible traps once on it; beyond is a fancy room with empty sculpted bookshelves and a carved pedestal. Wistta also feels a hint of fresh air from the stairs down. They don't know how to open this secret door and lost their crowbar at the treasure room's trap when the platform pulled back suddenly, and thus they choose to go downstairs.

Near bottom of the stairs, Sabine detects a pit trap, which one avoids by stepping over easily. At the bottom is a door with a peephole; dark beyond, infracvision reveals a root cellar storage room. When they open the door, the adventurers hear voices. Kate hears someone a woman call out in Common, "Did you put everything back in the cellar right?" They see a middle-aged woman enter the cellar, who sees the carrots that spilled when the party opened the door, and she fixes the carrots then climbs the ladder again. It sounds like they might not be in cult, the party surmises from tone, but they decide to go back up and not interact with the people.

They search at the secret door back at the top of the steps, and they find a catch to open the door. A finished passageway leads straight ahead. It turns to the right and goes a hundred-some feet before opening onto a little ledge. Wistta's danger sense is immediately triggered. There is boiling water down below with a lip on one edge. Crawling forward would be in a little trench with a tiny wall protecting from the water. The party hears sounds of movement up ahead, which leads them to cover their lights. They see no light but hear noises up ahead: clattering or something. Tove scouts out ahead and sees a set of subtle ladder steps at the end of the trench. There at the end of trench is an overlook of a large chamber with braziers (with softly lit coals) and a platform (two chained dessicated cows, no signs of injurty but they haven't eaten in days or weeks) plus three large things swimming in the boiling water. Standing around the platform are four monstrous 8' tall crustacean crab-men; they are probably what were stalking with the townspeople the other night. Normally, crab-men drag off and eat townspeople.

Vera suspects Kopru, and she heard that their need to live in hot water is what led to their downfall. She heard that they once ruled empires of charmed slaves, were largely eradicated by Korians. Kopru were said to be followers of Demogorgon as his chosen race.

Wistta decides it's time to ask to cosmos to provide what the party needs, an attitude based on her being a monk of the Right and Unalterable Way. She pulls out from her magic robe a steel horseshoe (specifically a holy symbol of Thim in their city), then a hook and 15' rope, and finally a decently elaborate iron key for a specific lock (an ok housekey). The party considers what these items mean.

Detect evil from the cleric Melvin shows that the whole platform is a weak consecrated evil. The crabmen are NE hungry. The cows are not evil. There are two or likely three overwhleming scheming CE things over where Tove's infravision revealed three things swimming in hot water.

Wistta concludes that the three items she pulled from her magical robe indicate we should stop now and instead go rescue the cleric of Thim (Elteera, a female human Coastlander), who is not actually (she hypothesizes) away at the Gathering of the Herd but is actually trapped in the place on top of the temple that Tove saw guarded. The rest of the party agrees. It turns out later that Wistta was right in concept but wrong about Elteera.

The party backs up to the library to camp, but it feels evil and thus they decide to back up further to camp in a corridor that is neither evil nor affected by acid from the hot-spring water.


Actions resume at dawn. Full moon is three days from now, and Wistta hyposthesizes that it's the trigger event at the end of the week when "everything will be fine".

Wistta says we should divide up the other two religious items. Kate takes the broad sword. Sabine takes the ring, which when she puts on turns out to be a dwarven ring that she feels she should keep on, and it has a spinny thing that makes her feel pumped when she spins it.

The Temple of Thim in Hotton has a smokehole in middle of the roof, and that's 15' off the ground, which is what the hook and rope are for. Tove and Wistta go invisibily through the secret door to the root cellar, luckily without awakening the house residents. The two of them sneak invisibily through town and rendezvous on top of the temple. Tove goes down the smokehole via hook and rope. He sees that the door to the living quarters is locked, and the key from the robe opens it perfectly. Tove can't go through an alignment barrier, however, but Wistta can because she is LN as per Thim. Wistta goes in the inner area of the temple without trouble, but after walking past the main anvil she can't find the priestess in any of the living chambers; then she sees the anvil has a slit in which she places the horseshoe. The anvil opens up, but then Wistta is blinded and disoriented and tumbles down. As the light and hold person spells on her drop, Wistta sees that she's in a little chamber with three acolytes and a henchman of Thim--and a complete high priestess scroll library with 40 scrolls, including all 3rd, 4th, and 5th level spells! The acolytes give Wistta permission to take any of the scrolls Melvin to use to help save Hotton. Wistta chooses the following scrolls: protection from evil 10' radius, 2 x dispel magic, remove curse, lower water, and 2 x cure serious wounds. Wistta promises to use the scrolls only to save the town and return any unused ones, a promise which is later kept. Wistta takes the horseshoe with her as per the acolytes' request. Wistta is no longer invisible from falling down the stairs under the anvil, but Tove is still invisible. Wistta and Tove sneak out of town and back to the geyser and down into the secret chambers all as planned. They hide the horseshoe and key of the temple of Thim in the secret chambers.

The Stompers develop a plan of attack with their spells, magic items, and new magic scrolls. Then they start to implement the plan--
Wisttra picked the right time and simultaneously strategy, and thus the foes are all surprised for three segments. Crabmen close in on the party. Tove's opening lightning bolt into the water does 22 points damage to the koprus, and there's a flash of lightning out from the point. The water at the koprus vanishes from lower water (scroll read by Melvin), and then the party can see three large, monstrous fish creatures with googly eyes, two fin-arms, three long tail-tentacles with scorpion-stingers, and eel-sucker mouths. A blast from Vera's newfound Korian headband hits the fish creatures. Suddenly, a blasst of energy on the platform kills two cows and crabmen (turning them to ash), and the fish creatures (koprus) are healed. Tove's sleep spell knocks out only one of the crabmen. The koprus appear in distress out of the water, but they can move and attack Sabine, who'd closed and attacked them. Kate hits with some arrows as she's flying with what remains of the flying potion; but before long a kopru makes Kate magically afraid. A kopru tries to instill magical fear in Vera, which does make her shaken but not afraid. Sabine hits in melee, and Vera hits and wounds in melee; focusing on a single kopru. Fear affects Vera, who runs to Melvin for protection. A magically blinded kopru flops around and can't get off any targeted magic on the adventurers, and it seems to be moving towards where water is. When Wisttra sees Tove moving to backstab the middle kopru, she distracts it, and it tries (but fails) to use its fear effect on her; while Tove hits backstabbing with his short sword for 28 pts damage and double wound to completly slay it. Sabine and Wistta both hit the remaining sighted kopru, and then Tove backstabs it with his short sword and dagger for a total of 38 + 1 wound. Sabine hits and wounds the remaining sighted kopru, and Melvin hits it with his scimitar. The sighted kopru disintegrates an injured crabman and heals itself some. Wistta kicks the sighted one but misses with her staff. Sabine hits again. After being afraid for a while, Kate finally drinks her potion of super-heroism, which makes her immune to fear and makes her a better warrior, and she starts to fly after the fleeing blind kopru. Another crabman falls (turning to ash, as they do when so consumed), thereby healing the kopru some. Sabine hits again. Yet another crabman turns to ash. Tove backstabs the blind, escaping kopru for 24 total damage. Wistta joins Tova in attacking the blind one. Another crabman turns to dust, and the sighted kopru is healed enough to be barely injured. Tova again backstabs the blind kopru, dealing lots of damage plus a triple wound. Kate fires a magic +2 flight arrow on the blind kopru, which kills it. Another crabman turns to ash, and the final kopru is back to full hp but with two wounds. Kate hits the last kopru with another magical arrow. Melvin hits and wounds it. Then the final kopru drains the feared Vera for 24 hp and heals itself. Wistta hits with her staff. More attacks hit the kopru, and it finally falls dead.

The party goes back out the warehouse from here and into Hotton.


Over the next few days, things happen. . . .

The villagers are all confused. Each remembers nothing from when they were each converted/charmed.

The party frees the other clerics of Thim from their temple and returns the unused scrolls.

Some people are tied up an confused. A low-level junior sage (Patrick) was sent a message from Captain Lester saying he should come check out Hotten and catalogue a special library. He has two low-level monk bodyguards, which is a standard thing for sages (at least on land).

Captain Lester of the Hand of Hendus will stay awhile. He says that he and his ship were far to the north (3 weeks on their fast ship) doing some trade with some small islands, and they were told there were interesting creatures to sell to Wilbar's Fish & Critters, but the creatures (koprus) took them over. The ship's first mate (aquatic elf) is missing, and the captain (at least overtly) dismisses him as unworthy if he would run away and not return.

Wistta tells Karl about the message from "Tom" and the Hand of Hendus, and Karl later returns some things to the Hand ship.

Several days later, the party is eating breakfast when a medium-small raider ship sails into harbor flying two flags: one flag of Demogorgon and some other religious flag no one recognizes (later find out was Farnaz, a very obscure cult that believes that demons [and devils] will succeed only if they work together; work for long-term benefit). Immediately, Wistta runs around alterting the merchant and Hendus ship to prepare for battle. To everyone's surprise, the demon ship's crew seems to expect a friendly arrival and waves. Wistta then runs around the docks and town while spreading word to everyone to smile and play it cool. The ship does a victory lap and docks. They lower a ramp with a red carpet, and some important-looking man with a staff comes out. Melvin uses his token of regalia to look very impressive.
The head man with the staff (Keever) asks if everything is ready to search for the library in honor of the two-headed mad god. Melvin suckers Keever by mention of the need to party in honor first. From what Keever says, apparently there is to be a big sacrifice (presumably for a divination spell) to find the library, which is presumably the evil library the Stompers already stumbled across. Keever mentions the Demonicon of Teh'eel(?) as critical. Keever mentions the need for reciprocation from honoring the demon prince of cooperation amongst demons [Farnaz] since otherwise that would be charity, which would be foolhardy. Keever is fooled, but the first mate Dee is faking drinking and seems suspicious.
Tove has meanwhile become invisible, and he prepares to backstab the first mate during the party and discussion--when suddently a voice whispers, "on 3: 1--2--3". Tove hits and kills Dee the first mate instantly. Captain Lester appears out of nowhere and kills Keever at the same time. We easily capture or kill the rest of the demon-ship's crew plus two more who were asleep on the ship. The crew say they totally thought they were going to get rich and powerful from this and were ignorant of any demonic schemes; but one of them cracks and says they were going to sacrifice the holy cattle of Thim plus 20,000 gp plus 20 townspeople, which freaked him out once he realized how evil these people really were. The plan apparently was to make sacrifices of townsfolk and cattle and treasure to use magic to find a library (presumably the one the Stompers already found). One crewman originated from Chawdick but was picked up in Ventris City (where the ship was not flying its demonicaly religious flags). The flags werer raised three miles out (from Hotten?).

Keever's log is on the ship, wrtten in Demonic code, which Tove can translate because he knows the Demonic language and is a thief. Keever knew a lot about what was going on. The 20,0000 gp was expected to come from the Hand of Hendus ship. Keever planned to trade his ring of warmth to a "finned one" (who apparently can wear rings on their tails) so it could move to another location, and he thought he knew where to get another such magical ring. That would allow two kopru to go elsewhere, while one stayed in this town; that was Keever's plan, at least, and he thought the koprus would agree. Keever's log has something of an imperialistic attitude at times, which fits with what the party observed of his personality.

Korpu apprently do more than charm, but it is a deeper enchantment control caused by poison from the tentacle tail of kopru. Nine people a night were converted: one from each tail stinger.

Captain Lester gives the Stompers the three collapsed boxes, which are nonmagical designed to keep the interior hot by focusing sun; Wilbar's Hot Boxes. Lester says we do what they want with them. They cost him money while he was charmed/controlled, but he doesn't want them.

Starting with Captain Lester, everyone in town makes claims about ownership of treasure found in the kopru cave. The largest (but not only) claim is from the Hand of Hendus. The claims exceed the present treasure by almost 1,000 gp. Morn, the cleric in charge of the temple of Thim, gives an extra 1,000 gp from temple to make everyone happy about their claims. (The Stompers later replace this 1,000 gp from the pirate treasure room, but they at this point did not reveal the presence of the pirate treasure to anyone.)

When the Hand of Hendus' ship "Waking Sun" prepares to set sail, Captain Lester tells the Stompers that he appreciates being treated fairly. He gives Melvin a special rabbit's foot, which he says is a one-time "get out of jail free card" with the Hand of Hendus. Melvin must keep it on his person or else it will disappear after being separated for one day. After the "Waking Sun" sails, the Stompers realize that Keever's gear appears to have vanished with the Hand (dog-headed staff, ring of warmth, and anything else he had).

The pirate treasure room had about 30,000 gp plus the three magic items we found earlier. Also, one sweet gem is one that gives a single use of true seeing. The Stompers had agreed to keep the room's presence a secret until the high priestess of Thim returns to Hotton, at which point they will trust her.

Patrick the junior sage analyzes the magic items from the pirate treasure and tells the Stompers what they are (for a fee), though it takes him a while:
The sword: "The Order of the Tides" is a chaotic-slaying broadsword dedicated to Osprem
Headband: Korian headband which when worn by a cleric of Kor blasts sunlight 3 x a day, other spellcasters 3 x a week and attack roll to hit, anyone else, 3 x a week and must make an attack roll. It's a relatively common item.
Ring: "The Impatience of Dimecheon" (CN dwarven god of luck) for an amount of time equal to amount of time you spin it before combat, you get slightly lucky.


The library is defintitely gone. It is not clear whether the books were taken or destroyed, but aquatic-elf footprints were found nearby.

The Stompers handle the priate treasure's distribution once the priestess of Thim is back; some treasure to the town, some to the Stompers, salvage taxes, etc.

The Stompers stay in Hotton a few months in case of any follow-up trouble from demon-worshppers, and they don't leave till hurricane season starts. Hurricane season is less of a big deal in Hotton than along the Sea of Pastures, but it's still unlikely that ships will arrive once the season starts. There is no more trouble in that time period.

Wistta tells her order about all this when the time is right--which is probably soon because it was meant to be that all this would happen, and it was meant that she was there to be part of it and be a witness.

Loose ends: What happened to the books in library? One or two aquatic elves (first mate Vaseev) and footprints in chamber adjacent to library. Maybe there are more kopru far to north where these three came from. Could more evil arise from the dog-headed staff that Keever had and Captain Lester took? Was there more to the Farnaz plan of demonic cooperation?


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