- Kelvyn the theif
- Fela the fighter
- Mugi the Man-Ape
- Braum the cleric
- Olg the High Orc
First-day of Week 21 finds the party very hung over. Gretchen revisits the debts from the night before with those that partied the night away, and finds that only Kelvyn can pay his tab in full. Lucia, Mugi, Braum, and Olg are all now variously indebted to her. They will owe her coin or a favor, whichever is more beneficial to her down the road when she calls on them to collect. For now, she is content to see the party off to talk to the Widower Stribe about buying his land for the endeavor with the goblins.
Kelvyn, asking around about rumors of any local nuisances, heard a tale of an abandoned gold mine. It partially caved in about 20 years ago, collapsing on one of the two twins who were mining. The other went mad trying to dig his brother out. He always insisted that his twin was still alive down there.
Coming back around to the widower Stribe, Gretchen commented that he needed either an ear to listen to his tale, or a strong beating. He was a nasty old man with a sad life story, so it was hard to tell which.
“I want profit and harmony. Those are my two main things. That’s what everybody wants. I don’t care what happens with the land specifically, since I’d be buying it on behalf of the goblins.” Gretchen offered 700 GP to the party to act as her embassies and buy the land. If Stribe didn’t take the money they should “do what you need to do” to get the land.
“Thank you for the option, but we will not be doing that. Money will be enough.” Braum calmly replied, in the face of his party’s discussion of smothering the old man with a pillow.
Upon arriving at the Stribe ranch, Mugi went inside while the rest of the party went around the back of the house where they could hear someone chopping wood. Mugi riffled through things, trying on most of Stribe’s clothing, but finding that nothing fit except a hat, which he elected to keep. He then settled down to munch on whatever he could find in the kitchen that wouldn’t fit in his sack to be carried away for later.
The rest of the party, meanwhile, talked with the widower. Braum offered 500 GP for the land, which Stribe rejected. “I poured my life into this land. That offer is an insult.” Fela then tried a different approach, sitting on a stump with the old man, sharing a wineskin and asking after his life story. Braum took up chopping firewood.
“I always wanted to see the sea. But my wife wasn’t interested in travel. Her dream was to have a family. Miscarriage after miscarriage, and the ones that drew breath never lived long. This place broke her heart. But it was the only place she was ever alive, ya see? How could I leave her, leave them? Everyone I ever loved is buried here.” Widower Stribe had switched to a harder drink than wine by the end of this tale.
“Your wife would want to see you happy. She’s watching over you. Why don’t you take a memento of hers and go show her the sea?” Fela suggested. Kelvyn nudged her to suggest something, but she shooed him away.
Mugi, growing bored with listening to this tale of woe through the kitchen window, grabbed the heavy sack of 700 GP out of the cart parked out front, and ambled around the side of the house. One hand full of the sack, it was difficult for him to sign.
“She has a very good of talking and talking for hours. I would rather just to give you guys the money. 700 GP is all we have. Enough?”
Widower Stribe knew signed Common, and was several glasses of whiskey into his day at this point. He understood Mugi with no problem at all. “Why didn’t ya lead with that?” He asked the party at large. “Ya can’t have mah horses or mah cows.” He finally said, querulously, “You can have mah chicken, lil fuckers.”
Upon going in the house to pack saddle bags, the party heard him swearing. Coming out, Widower Stribe glared at Mugi as he whistled up his cow dogs from the barn. He saddled his riding horse and his pack horse, and herded his cows off down the road into the afternoon light.
Looking around, the party counted 60-odd chickens, the run down house with 5 bedrooms, a dilapidated barn, two outbuildings, and an outhouse. One of the outbuildings proved to be a fairly sturdy chicken coop. It might have a deeper foundation than the farmhouse.
Braum sent a carrier pigeon with news of the purchase back to Gretchen, signing his note “hugs and kisses”. He then prayed at the little family grave yard, burning a candle on each headstone. “Stribe has left. Please go with him and watch over him. We will take good care of this place. Please be at peace.”
After a quarrel on the porch, Mugi elected to spend the night with the chickens. In the morning, Olg quips, “Who’s unclean now?”
Braum drew water from the well and filled the laundry trough with water. The party bathed in the cold water, except for Olg. Everyone insisted Mugi bathe last.
On the way up to the goblin Labyrinth, the party met neighbor Ned Killigun out tending his cows in the pasture by the road. They learned that he bought these cows from the Widower Stribe at what he considered a very good price. They discussed the Goblin King Scrob and Ned commented that Scrob has his head in the sand and wouldn’t hear a bad word about the conduct of his fellow goblins.
Reaching the Labyrinth, the troupe finds Scrob in conversation with goblin painters. They are covering the ceiling of a large room with an epic and bloody battle scene between two dragons and a party of adventurers.
Scrob was puzzled by the tale the party bought him, of purchasing a poultry farm on behalf of the goblins. Nevertheless, he and five comrades agree to go out and see this land with the adventurers. The enlarged party returned back to the farmhouse by the evening of second-day. The goblins elected to sleep in the hay loft, and Braum joined them.