Astra, Jedda and Eckhard hired on as guards for a caravan of ten wagons heading towards Darmshall for a fee of 5 marks each. The two adventurers that understood money busied themselves shopping for the journey before the caravan left early on the 15th of Eleasias, intending to take 4 days to cross the hills of the Sunderland. The caravan master, [[?]] turned out to be a bluff but canny individual working for the Three Stars trading coster out of Impiltur; the other guards were a mixture of adventurers and mercenaries, including [[?]] the wizardess, the half-orc warrior Ger’noth and Merrigon, a dwarven cleric of Clangeddin.
The first couple of days were uneventful as the caravan left the Vaasan Gate, then turned left at the Ford of the Cross to wind its way up into the foothills of the Galenas; Astra passed the time by providing evening entertainment. On the second evening, Astra, [[:Ger’noth]], Eckhard and were scouting ahead of the caravan and became aware of a smaller caravan of covered carts entering a ravine on the road ahead of them: they were unable to make out any details. The caravan master decided to camp just short of the ravine and the party volunteered to climb the hill over the ravine to check for potential ambushes, having been made curious by the sound of music echoing through the ravine.
After several hours’ hard slog in the twilight, they came out overlooking a campsite surrounded by half-a-dozen brightly painted carts and occupied by around twenty humans in colourful clothes, dancing and singing. They rapidly identified them as Gur, a somewhat mysterious nomadic people who roam the region, trading trinkets and tales and doing odd jobs. Although they had a reputation for petty thievery and dark powers, the Gur were not likely to be hostile, so the party decided to simply be wary. Heading back over the hill, they came across booted tracks crossing their path: following them, they encountered and slew an orc scout. Realising an ambush was likely, they headed back to camp to warn the caravan.
The caravan master decided to risk it the following morning, but the party decided that they could help in the event of an ambush by striking from behind the attackers. Retracing their steps, they were not suprised to come upon a couple of dozen orcs lying in wait: the party struck just as a number of guards and wagoneers fell to the first volley of arrows. The guards recovered from their surprise and began to shoot back, while the wizardess got off a couple of fireball blasts from her wand before being cut down by half-a-dozen arrows.
Note: while the player had technically left the game, Jedda remained with the party as an NPC. She was assumed to be accompanying the group as long as she was going the same way. Ger’noth was introduced in this game; Merigon was played by a guest.