After the battle at the arena, you went to nearby Greenwell Village to rest.
Greenwell is a bucolic little village in the countryside. It grew up around, obviously, a well. The well isn’t green, but the surrounding countryside very much is. Two roads cross at Greenwell, supporting a small inn called the Bucket. There’s a smithy and a temple to a harvest deity. The village’s real pride, though, is the windmill on yonder hill, built by a merchant from Horizon.
The winds that fill the mill’s sails aren’t winds of the surface world at all. Sometimes, it actually spins backward, turning flour into grain and grain into wheat. Once in a while, an escaped magical experiment or the result of a botched summoning spell wanders into the village.
You have now stayed for a few days, both to recuperate from the battle with Nuzbok and to gear up for the longer trip back to Hildebrande. In that time, as neutral parties, (and the ones who slew Nuzbok, which is both impressive to the villagers as well as frightening to those who know of the prophecy surrounding the demon) you are called on to resolve some disputes. One, in particular, involved an apprentice complaining about the old woman who doused his summoned fire sprite for Horizon.
Another reason to stay in the area was to look for the escaped Garados. You reflect upon what the Seeker told you during your travels together:
- Like many with magical talent in the region, Garados is also a noble. In addition, his family controls the profitable Lamplighter’s Guild in Eldolan, and he holds both wealth and power thanks to that association.
- When Garados was a young apprentice at the Mithril wizard school, he discovered the diary of a wizard named Tarloc who had lived 200 years earlier. Tarloc had researched “dark topics” that were banned by the instructors at the school. Intrigued, Garados learned how the Wizard King of old had been a more powerful spellcaster than even the Archmage, and that much knowledge now called “dark arts” by the Archmage’s people had been hidden away in ancient sites by the Wizard King (the current Lich King) during his reign. It also included a ritual to summon a familiar with a connection to the Lich King.
- Wanting the lost knowledge, Garados performed the ritual and summoned his familiar Kos, a homunculus and thus began his path down the road to darkness.
- Garados had been working on a special project through knowledge gained from his master via Kos and from a book of dark magic rituals that came into the store. He has nearly assembled a formula for animating once-dead flesh to create powerful and difficult-to-harm constructs fueled by necrotic energy. But the Lich King’s necromancers refused to give Garados the final part of the ritual unless he was willing to show his loyalty to his master publicly (and also as a reminder to the wizard of the ties that bind him). To do so, the Lich King’s lieutenants ordered Garados to unleash the undead he and his people had been creating upon the town “to remind them that death always waits for them” and also to send a few more souls into the darkness.
- Garados was not fully prepared for this request since he was focused on obtaining a position on Eldolan’s Mage Council, but wanting the final piece of the ritual (and not wanting to anger his master), he had spent the last few weeks arranging a proper show for the Lich King with the help of the Seekers of the Lost—a cult of Lich King followers that he had assembled and installed within Eldolan and the Lamplighter’s Guild over the last ten years.