Kazuki, Standard, and "Bamelias ":http://www.obsidianportal.com/campaigns/ekria_unearthed/characters/bamelias arrive at the town of Winterhaven. It’s a large town, about 1,000 people. It’s well known in the area as a trading hub. It is also quite safe, as the town is nestled in the foothills of the Cairngorm peaks.
They visit the local inn searching for information and possible help in looking for the perpetrators of the "Maelstraen ":http://www.obsidianportal.com/campaign/ekria_unearthed/wikis/maelstraenattack.
At first, they speak to Lord Padraig. He’s the Lord of the town, a large man who demands respect, while still being seemingly friendly to the townsfolk. He greets the visitors warmly. They question him about the attack, asking if Winterhaven might have militia to spare to help retaliate against the attack. While "Padraig ":http://www.obsidianportal.com/campaigns/ekria_unearthed/characters/padraigseemed at first open to cooperation, he takes "Standard’s ":http://www.obsidianportal.com/campaigns/ekria_unearthed/characters/standardlack of respect personally, and tells the group that he is unable to assist them. Despite this small disagreement, "Padraig ":http://www.obsidianportal.com/campaigns/ekria_unearthed/characters/padraigoffers to pay for their stay at the Inn, and the fee of a hot meal.
They also question the local sage, Valthrun the Prescient. After "Standard ":http://www.obsidianportal.com/campaigns/ekria_unearthed/characters/standardagrees to let the "Valthrun ":http://www.obsidianportal.com/campaigns/ekria_unearthed/characters/valthruntheprescientinspect him, the Sage provides them information on the keep that should help them in their quest to find the attackers. He gives them a small letter, written on parchment and addressed to no one, that reads as follows:
bq). The keep was built during the height of the old empire. Some sort of watchtower. I can’t recall what for. Some think it was to guard against gnoll marauders, but I don’t think that’s right. Whatever, the keep outlived it’s usefulness. It’s been a ruin since before I was born. Probably a golbin lair by this time. But you’ve whetted my curiosity. When I return to my tower, I’ll look through my library. The next time you see me here, I will know more.
Along with Lord Padraig and Valthrun the Precient, they notice a few more people in the Inn. Tired, and having gathered all the information they think they’ll find, they take rest in the Inn for the night.
Upon awakening, they question the "Innkeeper ":http://www.obsidianportal.com/campaigns/ekria_unearthed/characters/79807to see if she might have any information, but she holds no answers.
They leave the Inn ready to visit the Keep they’ve been given information about, hoping that will be the source of attacks. However, before they can leave, Lord Padraig comes to them and asks their aid in clearing out a nearby Kobold Lair. He says that, with the Lair clear, it would give him more room to possibly send the local soldiers to "Maelstraen ":http://www.obsidianportal.com/campaign/ekria_unearthed/wikis/maelstraento assist your investigation.
The group clears the lair, and kills the Goblin behind the Kobold attacks, Irontooth. From "Irontooth’s ":http://www.obsidianportal.com/campaigns/ekria_unearthed/characters/irontoothcorpse, they discover a letter, written to "Irontooth “:http://www.obsidianportal.com/campaigns/ekria_unearthed/characters/irontoothand signed by a ’”Karalel":http://www.obsidianportal.com/campaigns/ekria_unearthed/characters/kalarel’. It reads as follows:
bq). My spy in Winterhaven suggests we keep an eye out for visitors to the area. It probably does not matter; in just a few more days, I’ll completely open the rift. Then Winterhaven’s people will serve as food for all those Lord Orcus sends to do my bidding.
With the letter in hand, and the lair being cleared, they head back to Winterhaven…