Greetings and may this letter find you in good health. Let me first congratulate you on your victory at Yew. I know the price was high, but I feel the tide is turning at last, and humans are beginning to push back the darkness in their lands. I’m writing to tell you news of the so-proclaimed “Heroes of the Barony” – Mazlor, Grel, Børæn, Pyria, Fergus, Balto, Ceresei and myself – and our actions in and near the village of Truebrugh.
We arrived in Truebrugh on the 16th of Fall, and no sooner than we had dropped anchor we were met by the village leader, Lord Alden Wagner, no doubt responding to the commotion our arrival had started with the townsfolk. He gave us a grave report – around 100 of the afflicted creatures known as the Damned were outside the village in a tightly-grouped, but unmoving force, and 10 of his own villagers lie either dead or Damned themselves between the town and that large force. Grel and Mazlor had claimed that the Damned might be inflicted with a disease that could be cured, so we made a plan to ride out on horseback and catch one of the 10 in one of my old fishing nets. We managed to haul one back to town, where Mazlor had prepared an area to work a ritual of the Light. I don’t know what magic he did, but It worked – the Damned girl we’d brought back was fully restored and healthy as a bull shark, amazing! We repeated the process, one at a time and sometimes with the help of magic or brute strength to hold the Damned in place, and although some were either already dead or didn’t survive the process, we did save a few more.
A rider had been spotted before we’d gotten there by someone in town, so we decided to ride around the large group of Damned to have a look. We found a large group of tracks the Damned had made, and camped nearby to see if the rider would return. It was soon after that when we hooked our biggest fish yet, one of the Black Brotherhood! Thanks to Ceresei’s quick thinking, we soon had her held under a number of spells and I brought her off her horse with my lasso. This was a lower-rank member of the Brotherhood, and of course she wasn’t quick to talk with us, but an enchantment by Pyria soon loosened her tongue. She told us the location and numbers of the Black Brotherhood crew nearby, and she let slip that the Damned had been controlled by one of their leaders – with the use of some powerful skull artifact perched atop a staff, he or she had been able to make them march on command! The Brotherhood force numbered around 35, including a spellcasting priest and a champion swordswoman, and I thought we’d have no way to beat them, but some of the others wisely asked Lord Wagner if he could put together some of the villagers into a militia, and soon he’d assembled 3 units – including an archery unit – and we were off to battle.
As we approached, we successfully dispatched with one of their sentries which gave us a chance to catch them by surprise. I still wasn’t sure of the odds of success, so I tied on the headband of a fallen friend of mine, to honor him if things went badly. Fortunately, we were able to catch them away from their horses, and had a large wolf at hand to bravely run in and panic the steeds. As a battle commander, you have no need for me to tell you what a big advantage it is to engage cavalry off their mounts! After a few volleys from our arrows, the Brotherhood crew was either dead or in full flight away from us. All except their champion that is, who chose to challenge Børæn to a duel, a decision that proved to be unwise. I believe the Black Brotherhood may have abandoned this ship and most likely will not soon return to the area around Truebrugh, although the Damned still lie silently outside the village. We still hold the Brotherhood woman captive.
I hope that you can make use of this news. If you have powerful clerics under your command I believe the knowledge that the Damned can be cured will be most helpful! Also, be warned that we don’t know the whereabouts of that skull, and the enemy may still have the ability to command the Damned to do their bidding. If you have any news for us about the current situation, or any instructions on how we might best help, please send a messenger back to me at the Hound and Nixie Inn located in Old Fawn.
Your ally in dire times,