Black Goat of the Woods, Part Seven
Our heroes return to the barbarian barrows and further explore the King’s Barrow. They found evidence to support the idea that the ancient barbarian tribes of Khrullion worshiped the Black Goat of the Woods (Shub-Niggurath). There would be no denying this when they faced off with the Barrow’s lord, an undead creature that had been loyal and devout to the Black Goat in life. This undead lord now radiated agony and death.
Wyleros deceived the Barrowlord long enough to learn that the Black Goat would require its three sacred pools to become active before it could again stalk the Great Wood. They also learned that “the roots” prevent her from returning and acted as a barrier. Unfortunately, the deception was short lived and the cries of battle overtook the conversation.
Following their confrontation with the Barrowlord, they discovered a broken crypt. The lid was covered in Elven glyphs and strange markings. After careful examination the heroes surmised that it was a map of the Great Wood. There were a number of glyphs that stood out among the rest. Roughly translated they read; the buried river, high hill and the burnt vale. Could this be the locations of the three sacred pools?
Their examination of the crypt’s lid was cut short when the sounds of goblins could be heard within the King’s Barrow. Using a secret passage the heroes escaped the barrow taking the crypt lid with them. Hidden outside the barrow, Vale would witness the arrival of the Goat (Shub-Niggurath’s avatar) a top an azure skinned wyvern. She was furious when her goblins exited the barrow empty handed and ordered them to find the lid. The heroes silently withdrew and retreated to Darkwood Abbey.
The Riverman Inn and tavern was a welcomed sight, inside they relaxed with good food and good drink. They shared their bounty from the barrow with the townsfolk who appreciated their generosity. The heroes had put a number of plans in motion since their return to the abbey and now they needed to let their schemes ride.
First, Clarion (an expert forger) created a masterful duplicate of the lid’s markings. Then the duplicate was dispatched to her Highness immediately. He was sure to alter the glyphs and lines enough that the copy would be worthless to the Queen. Whether or not she will find this to be an acceptable payment for helping the heroes previously is unknown.
Second, they gave Brother Jacob of the Abbey a few of the pieces of the broken lid. Unsure of who can be trusted they kept the majority of the lid hidden. They hoped the skilled librarian would be able to find out more information about its meaning. However, they again used subterfuge, telling him that there were no other parts recovered and that they would appreciate him not sharing his findings with the Arch Deacon. He hesitantly agreed and went to work, using the abbey’s library to guide him.