The party heads north to one of the outlying fiefdoms in hopes of getting more intel on Kirthon and his plans. They meet the Blackclaw tribe, a tribe of orcs that have settled the lands around an ancient dwarves fortress. The chief of the tribe (Irgir) is an old orc who seems much beloved by his people. The relative safety of the fortress has allowed these orcs to prosper, but this prosperity has always been envied by it’s neighbors, though now it seems that Kirthon is plotting against them directly. Irgir is not worried though, for it would take ten thousand orcs and a river of blood to take this ancient structure from the tribe.
After checking the king for demonic taint, but feeling the presence of a demon nearby; the party enlists the king’s aid. They convince the king to allow them to test his subjects, a slow process, but one that yields results. The wife (Mist) of Irgir’s 2nd son (Vaitus) appears to have the taint. Because there was no proof possible, Mist was exiled instead of slain. The party then decides to split up. Greyfalcon and Darkling leave to track Mist while Hot Dame and Dogga go see the local shaman and make contact with the dropship.
At first her trail is slow and easy to track, but then she picks up tremendous speed. Though easy to follow, she gains time on the trackers. The tracks lead them to the outskirts of a family settlement, the party convinces the Orc family to be tested, but they find that one of their number is missing. Drops of blood and a cold but barely followable trail their only lead. The trackers manage to track a new set off tracks leading back to the Fortress, they trace them to back to outskirts of the fortress where they enter a farm recently abandoned. They lose the tracks as they head to the Fortress, but they suspect the demon is now back inside.
The visit to the shaman turned into a visit from a god (Gulgath) to be precise. Gulgath (through the Shaman) informed them of the demon threat to the land, telling them the heart of the infestation lies deep within Hammond Mein. The god then tasked the party with dealing with the abominations. The encounter was frightening and left the shaman estate that her god had spoke through her, and also physically changed. Parts of her looked older, while parts looked younger. Her right hand was replaced with a bird like claw. There is no telling what has become of her mind as she was not the most stable of people to begin with.
As Grayfalcon and Darkwing reached the fortress they met up with Dogga and Dame. The proceed into the fortress and once inform the king of their discoveries. He agrees to let them test the people again and though it takes all day and most of the night; the party finally finds the demon hiding among the peasants taking refuge in the fortress. Before they could deal with it, it self destructed leaving no trace.
The party then reports back to base for a rest and to plan their next phase. They are given a box of 10 prototype stones and asked to field test them. They meet up with the Dwarves trade caravan, and teach the ritual to the local mage “Mushi the Mage Extraordinaire”. Though strange and a bit silly, he none the less seemed to grasp the ritual (he was provided with his own stone). From there the party gathered some Orc allies and plan to gather information about when and where to strike. The Caravan route and timetable is known, with nod delays, they will reach Kangthorn in a little under 3 months.