After strengthening their resolve, the Heroes of Sandpoint rode north to assault the goblin lair at Thistletop and stop Nualia and her gang before their dark plans could come to fruition. They were joined by a half-orc named Karrnath – a surprisingly charismatic fellow who shone with the ‘touch of destiny’. Karrnath had previously been a traveling companion of Durgrim and Tellorn, as they made their way west from Korvosa.
The party switfly traveled the Lost Coast Road until reaching the Thistle River, which cuts through the overgrown Nettlewood. They cleverly employed a magical Swan Boat, procured by the always-prepared Aable, to follow the river to the sea, thereby avoiding the stinging underbush of the wood.
Imagine their dismay upon realizing that the island that is home to Thistletop is, in fact, a curious and obviously unnatural formation rising almost 80 feet above sea level and completely unscalable! Undaunted by this unexpected challenge, the noble adventurers sought a passage upwards through a sea cave in the cliff face, but only managed to disturb an unusual sea predator in its lair. They had only barely enough time to watch it feed on a hapless goblin, dropped down a chute by its tribe-mates, as they fled to safer ground at a small beach nearby.
From there, these hearty souls managed to scale the sea cliffs unharmed and then sought a pathway through the nettles to the rope bridge beyond. Within the nettle-warrens, they encountered goblins, goblin dogs and the tribe’s spiritual leader, Gogmurt. He was handily defeated, despite his druid mastery of the terrain and his life was graciously spared in exchange for his (somewhat unwilling) assistance.
The group made their way safely across the trapped rope bridge and through the initial goblin guardians to the fort and then quickly found the stairwell and descended to the floor below. It was there that the heroes defeated each of Nualia’s henchmen and captured Tsuto alive, their nemesis from the Glassworks, to return to stand trial as Ameiko had requested.
Making their way even further into the dungeon, they uncovered a secret entrance that led to a much older lower level and, ultimately, to their encounter with Nualia. After narrowly avoiding a vicious blade trap, the party found itself battling the fierce would-be fiend in a bottlenecked situation. However, after several dangerous and frustrating moments, the monk, Tellorn, was able to improve the tactical situation and allow his comrades to aid more effectively.
With Nualia’s threat ended, the group explored further and survived a harrowing enounter with shadows in an ancient crypt before discovering an abandoned, partially sunken treasure room. Although much of what was once valuable was ruined by the years, they were able to recover a respectable sum, including a giant-sized bronze and gold helmet that had recently housed a giant hermit crab that they had to defeat for the right to claim the treasure.
With the Kaijitsu family honor served and the immediate menace to Sandpoint neutralized, the five returned as triumphant heroes ready to spend heard-earned gold and enjoy some well-deserved rest!