As Biggle and I recuperated from our battle and conversed with Gariena, Allegro stumbled into our midst, frantic and wounded. He told us that he and the rest of the group had been attacked by the Druids of the Scarlet Moon after Aszh tried conversing with them. He seemed to think that Aszh caused some type of confrontation. The Druids summoned a creature made of fire and killed the party, only Allegro was able to escape. Aghast, Biggle and I couldn’t bear to believe such news, though Allegro insisted on seeing it.
Biggle and I were eager to check on the status of our comrades and find out the reasons for the hostilities with the Druids of the Scarlet Moon, but we were also wary of danger, considering the battle we had just been involved in, and the potential battle to come. We enlisted Gariena for aid, and the elf, still angered at the murder of her friends, agreed to help us. We then approached the first Druids that we met upon our arrival at site of the Wicker Man Rite and explained to them what has befalling both our party and Gariena’s. They seemed concerned but not quick to judge the altercation without more information. They explained to us that the leader of the Circle of the Scarlet Moon, a man named Elizar Dryflagon, told them the Rite of the Wicker Man was a complicated and delicate Rite that could not be disrupted before it’s completion. Perhaps Aszh and his group had disturbed this Rite and action had to be taken. Regardless, these Druids (Varigo, Mahoon, Inari and Fariya) agree to accompany us to speak with Dryflagon and inquiry about our comrades.
Deciding to warn others, and perhaps garner more support, we decided to talk with another camp’s inhabitants, two Druids accompanied by a bear. The conversation went pleasant enough (the bear was very agitated) and we departed ways with this pair on what we thought were neutral, if not friendly, terms and were quite surprised when they sent a pair of fireballs to erupt in our midst while we walked away. We survived this treachery, just barely and immediately counterattacked. Our newfound Druid companions joined us in the fight and the battle was quick and brutal. The two Druids that attacked us lay dead and their bear liberated by Varigo, though their fire spells nearly cost myself and Varigo our lives.
After attending to the wounded, we started towards the ruined abbey, now called the Scarlet Moon Hall, and stopped at two other camps to provide warning and enlist aid in our endeavor. The Druids at one camp, which included a sea Druid named Sauruki, agreed to accompany us but would hold judgement until they heard from Dryflagon; Sauruki Did shared with us that he too felt some apprehension about this Rite of the Wicker Man.
The last of our following were two rough-looking men who spoke little but appeared to be no strangers to violence. Biggle believes they are perhaps mercenaries, and paid them a generous fee to protect me should hostilities commence. They accepted his gold, and nonchalantly followed. I’m not sure they can be trusted, and still don’t understand their interest in this Wicker Man Rite, but if they earn their gold then I guess that’s all that matters for the time being…