Scouts were sent out two day’s journey, and the reports were as follows:
- Jarl Nightwolf has made his settlement in a great bay to the south of Jagerstead.
- squirrel-like Lodinnmen inhabit the forested hills to the west
- evidence of gold was found in a steam running through the hills, close to Jarl Nightwolf’s stead
- shell mounds in the northern bay show evidence of recent human presence
- a current human settlement occupies the northern bay, at the far western end
- ships were sighted among the islands to the south
Jarl Jager and his huscarls traveled by foot along the meadows and forest on the southern coast of the north bay. They discovered the stone foundations of an old bridge, and a ruined tower similar to the Rottargi towers from the old lands. The ruin had been occupied by some creature that scraped human bones clean and placed skulls on top of posts all around the tower, making for a macabre scene.
Inside the tower is an entrance to the interior of the Rottargi fort. Spiders, animated statues, skeletal warriors armed with carved wooden clubs, and more awaited below. In one room, three skin sacks, coated in a pitch-like substance, held a white ooze that reared away from Jagers torch, escaping by oozing in the loose soil. A full suit of Rottargi armor was discovered pinned to the wall of the room by a giant wooden spear. The method of manufacture makes it impossible for a human to occupy the armor. The unnerved huscarls believe that the armor may be meant for the white ooze creature they had unleashed, and take the damaged armor with them.
After leaving this dungeon, the party decides to wait and ambush the occupant of the tower room. An old woman, with a potbelly and great vulture wings, lands outside the tower at nightfall, and enters. The party ambush and nearly kill her, but she escapes into the night screaming curses in an unknown tongue.
Two days later, the party has made contact with a Tumvar settlement at the western end of the north bay. First contact is tense at first, but ends peacefully. He claims to have defeated all of the “serpent-men” who have come in their boats, indicating the serpent prow of the parties longship. The chieftain declares the western half of the bay his, but says that he cares not for the land east of the two indicated headlands, and wishes the party luck against the other creatures and men of the hills and forest. He specifically mentions the “wild men” (assumed by the party to mean the Lodinnmen), the forest maidens, and the Lavenir, who once lived where the stead is now located. He is planning a military campaign inland to conquer the other petty kingships of his people, and the party dropped several hints that they would fight with him for money.
Meanwhile, at Jagerstead:
- The foundations of homes and storage are being constructed.
- A location for a hill fort is being scouted, near the watch hill.
- A simple bonfire beacon has been constructed on Fernland, the coast island, and another at the top of the hill near Jagerstead. A few men occupy these locations at a time, keeping watch for threats from the sea.
- The smallest of the longships is being sent out fishing along the coast.
- Scouts are being sent out looking for bee hives.