Jonathan and Thomas are working in the manor’s library, Jonathan on his martial skills and Thomas on his academic pursuits. Jonathan takes a break and picks up a picture book. As he is looking through the pages he finds an old musty map. The map appears to mark the location to the temple of shadows and there is a trail mark out with times listed at various spots. Jonathan has never heard of the temple and after show the map to Thomas he has nothing he can add about it. The two show the map around to others in the manor and find out the following.
1) The Temple of Shadow is a legendary place and has never been found.
2) The Temple is said to house a great shadow creature
3) The map shows an area of the mountain SE of Drift.
The young men decided to wait on the map and head out to find out information on a winter tiger that Jonathan heard about. The tiger is said to be helping people in the valley. Its last report was near Drift where it fought off a group of wolfs helping some wash women from the village. They tell everyone their plan and head to drift to take up the search. They travel to midday and find a small trail hidden leading off into the wilds. There are tracks on the ground that look like large paw prints. Both youth decided to take a look down the trail. They travel not to far and find a dead human lying in a small clearing. Jonathan jumps off his horse and inspects the body. The man has had his throat ripped open. Thomas dismounts and inspects the area in the clearing. They find the following items and facts.
1) The body has been dead for a day or two
2) He is dress in forest green leathers
3) His cloak clasp is made of gold and has the initials NR [Jonathan takes this]
4) He carried a small baton and elongates to a quarterstaff and can be shrunk back to it baton size [Jonathan takes this]
5) He carried a small white metal device resembling a hand crossbow but parts are missing from it and he carries no bolts [ Thomas takes this]
6) He carried a small necklace with a clear elongated star crystal [Jonathan takes this]
7) Thomas finds a scorch mark on a tree and suggests magic was its cause.
They bury the body and Thomas suggests headed back. Jonathan wants to push on and Thomas finally agrees and the two push forward. The two travel for another hour and are cresting a hill where they see at the bottom on a path a very large wolf. The wolf is looking away but suddenly senses something and whirls it large head and face the two young men. Jonathan acting on instinct demounted his horse and readies the dead man’s quarterstaff. The worg [as the two would come to know the beast] charges up the hill but cannot quite get to Jonathan. Thomas finally gets off his horse next to the beast and tries a quick stunning punch. He hits the worg soundly but fails to stun it. Jonathan tries also to stun the worg but fails to hit. The worg turns and bites at Thomas striking him in the side and almost knocking him off his feet. Fighting through the pain Thomas strikes out again and hits the worg but for little damage. Jonathan moves to get in a better position but again fails to hit the creature. The worg again tries to bite Thomas rending more of his side and taking him off his feet. Thomas falls unconscious at the beast feet. Jonathan ready him self and again strikes at the creature but fail to land a solid blow with his quarterstaff. The worg stalks Jonathan eyeing him with some intelligence it wants to takes his meal and run but decides two meals would be even better. He leaps at Jonathan but watches as he dodges his bite at the last moment. Jonathan had been waiting for such an attack and flurries with his quarterstaff connecting with both attacks. The worg head craves in with bones crunching and drops to the ground dead. Thomas stabilizes and Jonathan gets him tied on a horse. Jonathan is going to look around when he see another worg heading over a ridge with a pair of rabbits in his mouth. He quickly mounts his horse and heads back to the manor.
Jonathan arrives late to the manor and the staff sees to Thomas. Jonathan explains the events that lead up to Thomas’ injuries to Robert, Ned and Dairu. They all listen quietly and reassure Jonathan that everything will be alright. They ask about the man and Ned mention see another man wearing either the necklace that Jonathan shows or one similar to it. He only remembers see the man at the final battle in Odessa. Thomas awakens the next day and finds Jonathan sitting at his side actually reading the book. They talk about the battle and Jonathan convinces him that they should return when Thomas is feeling better. A couple of days pass and the boys head out.
They travel to the battle site and find a small trail that runs around the hill and over looks the area were the two battled. They see more of the other worg’s tracks but there are no remains from the fallen worg they killed. As they are leaving they hear a little giggling but can find no one around. They travel back to the manor and report to Robert and Ned their finding. They decide to search for the Temple of Shadow and over the next days pack up the items they feel they will need on the travel. They decide to travel to Drift and find a scout and see if they can acquire any more information. Jonathan sells the cloak clasp to Robert for 7pp and 30gp which is more than Jonathan thought it was worth. They say their good byes to both Ned and Robert but they find that Dairu had left to help a settler family in the valley.
They arrive in Drift without instance and as they are heading to the one inn they see a large orc being thrown out its front door. He picks himself off the muddy lane and turns back and shouts curse at a woman standing in the doorway. The woman stands 5’ 8” and is covered in wolf pelts. She carries a large blade over her shoulder and looks like she was not happy with the orc at all. They exchange a few more words in orc when Jonathan suggests to the orc that he should just move on, probably better for everyone. The orc grunts a little and trots off down the lane toward the hotel. The Woman returns to the inn and the young lads follow her in. After a short conversation and Jonathan being thrown out of the inn by his breeches the two get the woman to join them in their search for the Temple. She only wanted a meal and part of any plunder found. They discover her name is Sarana and that she might hate orcs even more than Ned.
The group heads out the next day and over the next couple of day begins to warm up to each other. Sarana argues that the map show only impassable terrain and she cannot make sense of any of the writing or symbols. During the night the group is attacked by two goblins and a worg that the group thinks is the mate to the one they have already killed. This worg just looks bigger. A short battle is fought were Sarana proves her worth by cleaving off the head of the worg. Jonathan chases after one of the fleeing goblin and hears its death screech from behind a tree. He rounds the tree and sees a little goblin woman wiping her blade on the dead goblin. She introduces herself as Heart and mentions that she has been following them ever since they killed the first worg. When introduced to Sarana there is mention something about killing more goblins but the misunderstanding is quickly remedied. Heart mentions the man killed in the clearing was her friend Nee. She couldn’t really help him against two worgs and he died protecting her. She goes on to say that Nee was going to train her to be a Nexus Ranger. A big old white worg comes walking out of the woods and curled him self around the fire. With shocked looks from everyone else Heart goes and curls herself up to the beast and with a little giggle says that this is her friend Big Grey.
The end the first session…