Many people had come and gone in the caravan as it traveled back and forth through the Nentir Vale over the course of the past year. Each town or village would see people come and go.
There were however a core of people who stayed with the caravan. They were:
- Master Gerred, the Caravan master, a human from the Town of Fallcrest.
- Joltan, a human, the pack master, responsible for the wellbeing of the animals.
- Akmenos, a tiefling buyer and trader for the House Azaer.
- Looska a minotaur, in charge of the guards for the caravan.
- Druuk a half-orc, a reliable guard, who had been with the caravan longer than everyone except Master Gerred.
- Keelyth a small, quiet half-elf. She did odd work around the caravan, pitching in to help where ever needed, but mostly helping out Joltan.
Over time these people formed a friendship, a camaraderie. They learned they could trust each other, learned of each others foibles and traits.
It was early summer. The five wagons of the caravan were heavily laden, packed with goods from Hammerfast destined for Fallcrest and beyond. Two nights before saw the caravan stop at the Fiveleague House and enjoy the hospitality of Barton the proprietor.
The sun was sinking and the Caravan would be making camp soon. That’s when the attack happened. Goblins sweeping down out of the Old Hills, what must have been an entire tribe of them.
What happened next was a confused blur.
Akmenos was dodging in and around the Goblins, hacking and slashing with abandon.
Looska charged in with Druuk and the surviving guards towards the center of the goblin formation.
Keelyth swept up a fallen goblin shortsword and moved to defend the animals and other people.
Looska and Druuk got separated.
Druuk found Akmenos pinned to the ground by half-a-dozen goblins, with one about to deal the death blow. Druuk killed the one on top and another one, freeing Akmenos from the ground before moving on in the battle.
Akmenos saved Keelyth and others by tumbling in behind their foes and surprising them with attacks from behind.
Looska was surrounded by goblins, when one of them fell behind her she found Keelyth throwing daggers scavenged from goblins with better than expected accuracy. Allowing Looska to finish off the foes in front of her.
However, despite their best efforts, the wagons were fired and nearly half the people died.
As dusk fell Looska found Akmenos sitting by the road side, surrounded by dead goblins, watching the remnants of the caravan burn. He looked up at her and said: “Well, I guess I’ll have to get rich another way then.” Everything he owned in the world was in the burning wagons.
The arrival back in Fallcrest went about as well. With Master Gerred dead, there was no reason for the surviving members of the caravan to stay together.
Hoisting a drink to Gerred at the Nentir Inn, Joltan told the other members of that core group that he was going to retire to spend his time with his niece and nephew and their kids. He had been putting aside money for some time now and rather than try and keep going after the latest setback, he would take it easy.
That left the four remaining members. Akmenos, Looska, Druuk and Keelyth.
Akmenos had lost everything, including his job, with the Caravan. Looska and Druuk couldn’t find work as caravan guards after what happened on their last job, and Keelyth had no specific plans.
So over a few ales, which became a few more, they hatched a plan. Looska knew that the Mages of Saruun were looking for information and samples of the Chaos Scar. Keelyth and Akmenos had heard of the Chaos Scar and the Keep on the Chaos Scar, Restwell Keep.
So putting together all their worldly goods they departed from Fallcrest and headed out to seek their fame and fortune within… The Chaos Scar