We went with the kua’toa guard named Gl’blb, giving up our weapons to some very mistrustful guards, then entered a relatively grand hall with giant stone water fountains to meet with their minister, Krakow. For us having slaughtered many of his people with reckless magic and melee, he seemed surprisingly lenient to our fates, perhaps sensing our aid would be critical to freeing his people from the iron grip of the Saltmarsh elite. He agreed, with a gelding of eleven gold coins from us, that we could make amends, and seek out the weapons cache held in Saltmarsh by smugglers so that his people might be armed against the sahauguin menace.
Unfortunately, it turned out that two of his high clerics were offended by this plan, and they slew the third, to declare Krakow a heretic and turn on us. I rushed to leave the room — to summon aid from the guard cabinet, of course — only to find myself face-to-face with two rough-looking human sorts. Trying to lie my way past them proved fruitless as they’d been told about me from Casp Averton himself! So, with a wiggle of my fingers and an admonishment that they’d not learned quite everything about me, I sealed them into solid stone by sacrificing my own life energy to boost my Ward Portal magic. It wasn’t a particularly pleasant way to go.
But not all was made to ease by my efforts. The clerics had summoned a water weird, a beast made of pure liquid, to attack us, and it was proving very effective. Not only that, but from one of the stone pillars — apparently a secret passage — leapt a Saltmarshian to strike at us from behind. I yelled to the kua’toa minister to aid us, lest they be next on the clerics’ rampage — and he assented to send one of his guardsmen out, who promptly slew the cleric our little band hadn’t, and dispelled the water weirds he’d summoned. The crossbowman, paralyzed by Mooz’s spell, quickly expired in the murk.
When it all had quieted down, two of the three lizardmen of Yig were dead, along with all of Krakow’s clerics. The minister inquired quietly of me if I could open his now-stone-wall door, and I had to humbly reply that I could not reverse the magic, given the power with which I had imbued it. So, we found ourselves using the Saltmarshian secret entrance into the minister’s chamber to exit. It was quite the ride, poured in with water from the fountains as it were, a slip and slide endeavor which left us in the salt of the ocean out a tunnel entrance. Krakow sent a retinue of kua’toa with Jackknife and the living lizardman of Yig to explore a potential entrance through the Shrine of Chulg to the sahauguin lair; the rest of us would seek out the hidden weapons cache in Saltmarsh.
We ventured through the marshes again; only to run into the selfsame troll that had been following us, seeking a way home ever since we had lured it here by accident through the Yig portal. Pervince somehow convinced the thing that a nearby caravan we had seen, hauled by hideous creatures, would take it home; it lumbered off in that direction rather than eat us, which must have meant a desperate strait for the troll as I know little that will interrupt them eating.
We arrived at Harvest Hall before long, choosing this site as our place of investigation not only because we’d heard smugglers had holed up in there before, but because of its separation from Saltmarsh as a whole. Pervince sent his sow in to look for traps; it found one, a trap with large pedipalps and wicked hooked arachnid legs. We thought to descend into the well; unfortunately, Mooz made a tactical mistake and jumped down without gauging the distance or the water level, landing with a sickening crack. Diego joined him. Sometimes I wonder about the intellectual direction our party takes. I had little chance at the time to ruminate upon it for the giant crab spider soon crawled out of the house and assaulted us directly, hoping for more food. It bit Pervince, who immediately shrieked and clutched at his throat wound, which began to redden instantly; Ixxar, our shaman lizardman who accompanied us, summoned his god of poisons for aid, and the poison regressed from the wound, sinking into the ground instead. I saw this ugly situation for what it was and empowered my magics once again with my life-force, reversing an Enlarge spell to shrink the beast down to a manageable size; Pervince, seeking vengeance and continued life, immediately leapt upon it and sank both his shortswords into its thorax, cleaving it asunder. The thing screeched and fell, cut in twain; it seemed less the threat now that it was both half its size and dead, but Pervince could tell you how close that one came.
We hauled Diego and Mooz up from the well, and the bumbling cleric managed to heal his own wounds. Into the house we stepped, hoping for refuge and rest. Alas, that was not to come.