The soon to be adventuring party are traveling with a pair of merchant wagons caravanning from Fallcrest to Harkenwold. As your fellow companions on this trip there are two caravan guards hired by the merchants Galwik Goldspinner, a chatty but likable dwarf from Hammerfast and Tiberius a quiet human cloth merchant, two strangers on horseback, one human maiden, the other a silent aged bodyguard from his body language every time someone approaches the pair and a family the with two children traveling on foot.
As the miles pass by everyone seems in good spirits sharing stories and provisions.
As the caravan enters the Harken forest heading west everyone takes on a more nervous demeanor. After coming to a bend in the trail the lead guard spots trouble, a wrecked and horseless cart with bodies nearby.
One of the guards went to go investigate the wreckage of a wagon as the other stands guard.
As the investigating guard pokes the bodies one lurches up and attacks , it’s a zombie riddled with arrows, at the same moment hidden archers attack the other guard sinking four arrows in unison. The body guard defends his charge, leaving the group as the only defenders of the caravan. Slowly other zombies all rise and shamble to there feet. From the woods a war cry rips our and a orcish warrior rushed to the dying guards side engaging the zombies as the Ranger and wizard unleash there abilities dropping the hidden goblin archers and the Cleric charges at the danger protecting the family from attack. Down the trail a mysterious figure comes into sight, a human rider dressed in black on a black steed. With the site of the new on comer the maiden throws back her cloak whispering something to her guardian and then in a commanding voice she turns to the group " it’s me they want! Protect the others!" Kicks her steed on and bolts south into the woods, a few goblins still hidden in the underbrush along with the rider run south the persue.
After the foes were dispatched the group noticed some foul ritual was cast on the unfortunate members of that caravan turning them into undead, but why were working with goblins. One of merchants Galwik Goldspinner recognizes the cart as one of his clans and knows it carried a few vials of hydras blood his clan had ordered from the south and is offering a reward to the adventures if they return it to him. As the dust settles the bodyguard tells everyone that the maiden who ran off is an friend of Baron Stockmer’s who will surely reward anyone who finds and rescues her.
Searching the woods for the maiden the group find the dying horse she was riding being devoured by a pair of wolves, after looking around this group attacking the horse is a goblin hunting party. The goblin with the crossbow seemed to miss every shot it took as the cleric ran up to attack the wolves, the ladies engaged in deadly long distance attacks as the fighter pursued a goblin in hiding chasing him down a ravine knocking him out and taking him prisoner. After interrogating the prisoner the group now have offered ‘Splug’ to pay him for being there hireling and guide, now Splug is taking the group to the old Minotaur temple where his goblin cohorts reside and the human who has taken over their home and demanded they do his bidding. That night as the adventures camped, sharing provisions with Splug further loosened his tongue further saying ’ Malaroth is his name, human death wizard, very bad man, I over hear him say to our shaman he wants all magic items we can find to make into magic powder for some magic trick. ’
With dawn the group are refreshed and heading out to the goblins abode…