After a long and dangerous trek from Tyr, you finally arrive at the gates leading into Altaruk. As Kaldras speaks to mercenary guards who palm the proffered ceramic coins, your eyes travel up the smooth walls that enclose the town. More guards, armed with obsidian-tipped spears, perch at intervals atop the wall. Every third guard faces the town rather that the landscape. As Kaldras wraps up his conversation, he motions for the caravan to follow inside.
You meander through a ramshackle bazaar, watching as elf merchants haggle and assortment of buyers. Realizing this must be the elven market in Altaruk, you start thinking about what you should once Kaldras pays you, Within minutes the caravan stops, and Kaldras greets members of his Moonrunner tribe. As elves begin unloading the cargo, Kaldras asks you to unhitch the kanks while he fetches your wages. He dissapears into a nearby tent.
Benlys the swordmage spots the approaching elves fingering their blades rather than eye the cargo. A flash of scintillating colors burst over the market as he yells, warning of treachery.
The fight is brutal and quick, Abraxus maneuvers the group into a defensible wedge and drives them into the tent Kaldras stands near. Kaldras sneers as the fighting closes but he is overcome by Drogan berserk rage and Abraxus’s tactics. The elf peddler ordered his tribe to knock out the heroes and even used innocents as shields but it was no use.
- Abraxus* stood victorious over the elf peddler as he drew a blade over his throat, “Courage is going from failure to failure even after loSssing your coin”
As you stand over the body of the fallen elf, a murderous glint shines in the members of the moonrunner tribe. Before you can land another blow, a commanding voice reverberates through the market square.
“Hold! Stay your weapons! By the authority of Arisphistaneles, I order you to cease your violence!” Mercenary guards armed with razor sharp obsidian spears pour from every nearby passage. The elves’ eyes flick warily in your direction as they wait to see how you’ll react to the captain’s order.
A battle scarred human male in a polished carapace breast-plate strides towards you. The sun reflects brilliantly off his bared steel short sword. Everyone’s eyes are drawn to the precious metal. “I am Tellemon, captain of the guard of this quarter, You have violated the peace, and I demand to know why.”
“Dangerous slaves milord,” says a young elf who identifies himself as Kaldras’s son. “They slew my father who was charged to return them to their owner in Balic. They would have harmed more of my tribe have you not stopped them lord, I beg they are punished and banished from Altaruk.”
The heroes bungle a response, only holding their rage in check and managing to point fingers as the elves being treacherous.
“yes, yes, the moonrunners have long brought coin into this town and you four are new. I believe you are dangerous and for that you will fight in the blood sand arena, all winnings you might earn will be paid to the moonrunners for their loss. Thereafter you four are to leave town on the first caravan out from here, you wont cause trouble on my watch.” says tellemon.
The heroes participate in a game “Coins in the Coffer” against a band of Gith gladiators. They lose because of the Gith’s underhanded but fair tactics. The crowd having bet on the humans erupt in outrage and the four are met with contempt on the town. Later that night a sandstorm blows over the area and everyone is forced to stay indoors until the morning.