Attending: Nykolas (Bleys), Dray (Wulf), Jakha (Dylan), Sister Genevieve (Jen), Enoch (Tripp), Rueben (Finger), Arthur (Rich) and Klog (Shawn).
The new Marchguard gather in Wiahola, a traffic hub in Southmarch. There is a small village nearby, Berwick, which produces timber from the Berwick Forest. Teamsters bring the logs to Wiahola to the coast and up to Duncombe. Fey, giants, bandits, and other strange creatures have begun to threaten the region, and Berwick's lumber has become more important. A few weeks ago, the logs stopped coming.
Margrave Duprey (and his right-hand-woman) XXXX, wants us to figure it out. We have the right to nominate folks for membership in the Marchguard on our travels. Mandate: maintain peace, order and the functioning of society. Also, justice and fair-dealing.
We walked to Berwick, rounding the lake. A large number of lumberjacks were heading down the road, families in tow. Arthur stops one family and asks what is happening. "I don't want to be part of Wilfred's strike. I'd rather work than try to get higher wages." "Wilfred Wheat is a woodsman leader, and is holding out for higher wages." The lumberjack and his family was afraid of the orc and dragonborn in our party.
We make it to Berwick, a sleepy little town, just after noon. Nykolas plays with the kids, offering candy and giving piggyback rides. Dray attempts to be nice and non-threatening and does ok. Sister Genevieve greets everyone as kindly as she can. Reuben heads to the tavern (The Orchard, known for its cider), and Arthur looks for the village leaders. Enoch goes with Arthur. Jakha gets Reuben and Klog to bring him some food, since he can't enter the tavern.
We talk briefly with the Mayor and the halfling sherrif Puhipi, who is of a famous native family that made good with the first Imperial ruler. We say we'll take care of the problem, but the mayor says he might have to use force.
Meanwhile, at the tavern, party members are helped by Nelson and his family. The prices seem a tad gougey. The heroes questioned the keepers about local troubles, which led to some rude comments about the striking loggers and orcs by Nelson. We learn that Wheat has stopped coming to town and now stays in the logger camp.
Sister Genevieve goes to meet with the local cleric. She greets him politely. He seems frazzled, mainly because there is a rift in the community. Some people like Wheat and are supportive of his cause, but other folks don't want to brook such revolutionary spirit. Many have asked the priest about their spiritual role in this. She learns that Wheat hasn't been to church in a few weeks, and this revolutionary attitude seems new. Wheat wasn't particularly devote prior to this, but showed up on holidays with clean clothes. He wasn't revolutionary before. She promises to do her best to bring Wheat back into the fold. He gives her a healing potion.
We all re-gather at the tavern. Jakha listens at the kitchen window and hears comments about the dragonborn, and the difficulty of cooking for…it.
After some homo-erotic discussion of Klog and lumberjacks, we go several miles up the road to the logger's camp. Jakha scouts ahead. He hears Wifred Wheat talking loudly about rights, pay, the value of their labor, which is 100gp a day. He warns us that there might be some magic at play.
When we approach, the lumberjacks get a strange fire in their eyes and attack! A wild melee ensues, with Arthur running to the front, getting shot and hacked by axes. Some of the lumberjacks begin to fall, but all gang up on Arthur, who has run to verbally accost Mr. Wheat. Arthur is soon bleeding the trampled dirt of the camp. Luckily, Sister Genevieve was there to save him, while the rest of the party knocked the lumberjacks unconscious and began beating Wilfred senseless.