We keep going until we find more solid ground and then we decide to rest for 8 hours.
When we begin traveling again, we head towards the forest which we can just make out on the horizon. As we get closer to the forest we can just make out a village in the distance, with people milling about.
We draw closer and we can see that the people are all very pale, so pale it’s disconcerting. It is a small village surrounded by a low wall, and we can see tents everywhere.
Gathalimay calls out “Hail!”
One of the pale humans responds “Well met.”
Gathalimay explains that we have been on a long journey and are in need of supplies.
The same pale human introduces himself as Agosto and welcomes us to the village inviting us to take part in its hospitality. Agosto explains that his people came to this spot as pilgrims to the forest which is guarded by children. They are currently camped here waiting for the forest to invite them in. We can see down the path towards the forest a big stone sarcophagus at the edge of the forest. The village appears to be self-sustaining; we can see a well and small gardens being tended. We ask if we may fill our canteens from the well and Agosto agrees.
Merielle and I notice that none of the villagers seem to be carrying weapons. We talk with the villagers who tell us more about how they are waiting to enter the forest. There is talk of a very few individuals who have entered the forest.
Agosto takes us down to the sarcophagus and explains that when people want to enter the forest they go and lay inside the sarcophagus until they are permitted to enter.
We examine the sarcophagus and it appears to be a plain stone box with a stone lid. Kalpa pushes the lid and it pivots open. Ravel jumps up and sits on the lid. The sarcophagus is sitting flush on the ground. Kalpa and Sam try to push it or move it to no avail.
Sam and Kalpa exchange glances and then Sam uses the sleeping rock on Agosto. Sam and Kalpa lay Agosto in the sarcophagus and swing the lid back into place. Ravel still lays on top.
The party then sets up camp to watch the sarcophagus. After a bit one of the townsfolk, Akee, comes by to ask if we’ve seen Agosto. We tell him that we haven’t seen him and he leaves.
While we are waiting Merielle checks the area for prints. She finds small boot prints, but they don’t look like the gait of a child, rather a small adult. I can sense some magic in the area, and recognize the sarcophagus as some kind of magical item.
Kalpa checks the sarcophagus and Agosto is still lying inside. A while later we start hearing moans and wails from inside the sarcophagus. The night continues and we hear more moans but we don’t see anything.
When daylight dawns Sam pushes the lid open. Agosto is lying in the sarcophagus with his eyes wide open, staring straight up, breathing heavily. We splash water on his face and he wakes up a little bit.
Agosto mumbles something about not feeling well and wanders back to the village.
We break camp and follow him back. As we approach, we can see Agosto staring blankly. The villagers around him are looking back at us antagonistically and we know we are no longer welcome.
We go back to the edge of the forest and Gathalimay volunteers to lie in the sarcophagus. Shortly thereafter, he starts screaming “let me out, let me out!” When we get the sarcophagus open, he tells us we have to break it so Sam tries. At some point the stone cracks, and then it crumbles into dust. We don’t know what happens to the magic because that can’t be destroyed.
Now we’re at a loss, so we decide to head towards the forest. As we get close to the edge we see a movement and a javelin comes sailing out and lands at Sam’s feet.
“You dropped this!” Sam calls out.
Kalpa calls out “what do I need to enter? I have your tomb.”
Five more javelins sail out of the forest and land around Kalpa.
“We’re coming to check things out,” Sam says, “we just want to pass through.”
“We come in peace,” Gathalimay adds.
The undergrowth parts slightly.
Kalpa walks into the undergrowth. Sam follows him calling out “we come from the south bringing the gifts of modern medicine, the sleeping rock.”
Kalpa gets farther into the forest and starts hearing voices inside his head. He calls out “I repented!”
Sam follows him.
All of a sudden two small people with curved daggers appear in front of Kalpa.
“We don’t intend you harm,” Kalpa says.
The small people attack Kalpa and leave him unconscious.
“This one was unworthy” one of the small people says to Sam as if to explain the attack.
“May I retrieve his body?” Sam asks. They nod.
Gathalimay, who is making his way through the undergrowth hears voices in his head and says “I’m not one! I’m not” and retreats out of the forest.
Sam asks the small people, “what do we do to make the unworthy worthy to cross?”
“Worthy or unworthy is set in motion by actions of the past. Can you forgive a knife?”
Sam drags Kalpa out of the forest.
“I’m removing the unclean from the forest. How do I clean him?”
Kalpa stands up and calls out “Let us pass!”
Two more little people appear.
Sam taps Kalpa with the sleeping rock and Kalpa goes limp.
The rest of us are comparing notes outside the forest.
Sam, Merielle and I walk back into the forest and don’t see anything. We call out to the people asking if we can hunt for supplies in the forest.
“Take no more than you need and do not harm the forest” comes the response from somewhere in the trees.
We decided to journey to Raan along the outer edge of the forest.
For their efforts, party members earn 300xp._