I found in Copperpot’s diary a mention of the village of Greenbriar: he surmised that there may be a connection to the Briarstone Keep as the town shares the name. We decide to follow the Greenwash Creek to find the village and see what we may see.
We spent a day in Greenbriar. I found a stableboy at the Tavern who told me the whole town knew of the Briarstone Keep as their reve, a man named Thorsen, had travelled there in his youth. Reve Thorsen told me his tale when we went to visit him. 20 years ago his lady wife, Brynn, had been kidnapped in her youth by a group of goblins. Thorsen, then a young man, set off with a group of townspeople to save her. They tracked the goblins to the Briarstone Keep, wiped them out and rescued Brynn from her captors! Thorsen had not since heard any news from the Keep, but told us the way, very kindly.
We spent a night in Greensbriar to stock up on rations, then journeyed on. The Keep was about a day and half ride (after returning to the inn to leave the wagon despite many a grumble from Sarge) from the town. Midmorning on the second day, I sniffed out some woodsmoke and espied a ruined castle or manse off in the distance. Zadok and I scouted closer and I saw a movement in the second floor: a guard for sure. Thorsen said the keep would be 8-9 leagues SE into the forest, and that’s just about where we were. This had to be the place. We had no choice but to go on.
I walked up, bold as can be, though perhaps I should have shown more caution. Three tough men jumped out at my arrival, accompanied by a tall, pale, strange-looking fellow. Perhaps a bit Elvish in the ears? I announced my presence, and the rest of my company. He introduced himself as Fergus and seemed to receive us well, then invited us inside for a drink and a bite. I felt wary, but Sparrow seemed to trust him so we followed him in.
As we sat around in the common area looking around us at the ruined walls of the Keep, Ben asked to inspect the Keep a little more. Fergus offered to show him the tower and they went off. Zadok in the meantime seemed preoccupied with his mule train and went off to bring his precious animals into the Keep; one of Fergus’s friends offered to join him. We waited, drinking the delightful ale, and we were at the ready when Zadok’s message reached Sarge that these Bandits were betrayers. The fight began quickly as Sparrow dropped her mug on the floor and began hacking at the closest man to her.
We cut through them then ran through the rooms searching for the tower where Ben had been taken, and encountered a huge creature, a cleric, and a terrified Bandit that ran away as soon as he got the chance. Fergus was there as well and tried everything he could to keep us away from Ben, but when one of our own is threatened, there is no way to stop the Broken Sword. We destroyed them all and found Ben tied up in one of the tower rooms.
We ravaged the keep and found the Bandits had left quite a bit of loot, and even found some riches that must have been there for 300 years. Downstairs we found a basement and a locked door. As this is the home of the Bandit King for sure, I can only imagine what treasures and terrors lie within…