With each character assembled in the inn the day progressed, none of them wise to the fact that they would be fighting together in but a few hours. Keeping their spirits high was a mandolin playing bard, his tunes echo loudly throughout the width and breadth of the inn.
As time ticked by and darkness began to fall the innkeeper, a portly man with clothes that don't look to have been washed for weeks, made his way around the taproom lighting the various lanterns scattered acrosh the establishment. As he did so he whispered to (probably) every patron, trying unsuccessfully to hide that he was doing so:
"If yuir' here for NeMoren and have a key follow me upstairs, Raphael's a waitin' for ya."
The barkeep, puffing and panting as he goes, walked up the bar's rickety stairs to the second floor. Following closely were the player characters – the two orcs, the tauren and one of the (more respectable) humans…
Walking up the stairs to the first floor landing, the characters find themselves in an old wooden landing with a single corridor running from the stairwell to the eastern wall of the building. Standing at the end of this, opposite a wooden door that probably leads from the corridor to a bedroom, is a man dressed in leathers wielding a large, ornate wooden bow. His long, raven black hair, matching his relatively shorter beard, sits wildly around his narrow shoulders. Athletic in stature, the beige-coloured clothes he's wearing are all soiled slightly – from soil clinging to his leather boots to the dirty blotches on his over the shoulder backpack.
The innkeeper, ruddy faced with the exertion of climbing the stairs, muttered to everyone as he walked back down the stairs, "This here's Raphael".
Raphael then wasted no time in addressing the characters in a calm, but hurried voice:
"Before we begin I'll need to confirm you are who you say you are – can I see the four keys?"
All four of the characters brought out their silver keys. In response to them doing so, Raphael dug around in his 'man-bag' and pulled out a plain, silver-metallic rod. He pointed it in the direction of the keys and each one glowed with a light green aura.
Raphael's composure did not seem to change much as he continued to speak, having placed the rod he just used away:
"Thanks for being so forthcoming with the keys in your possession. My name is Raphael and my services have been obtained to guide you to hear the last will and testament of Baron Paytro NeMoren, the last descendent of the NeMoren clan. Those wielding the silver keys of NeMoren, as you all are, are his named beneficiaries."
"Being so, I have been asked to return you all to the city of Phlan to begin proceedings. I hope that…"
Whatever Raphael was going to say was interrupted as a sound from the main taproom, like that which comed from the wind in a small but powerful tornado, ripped up the empty stairwell and reached across the first floor landing. Lasting only seconds, the whine finished with a deafening silence that was then broken by several quick thumps coming up the stairs. Raphael quickly drew his bow, aiming towards the stairway entrance.
The innkeeper came into view, his normally crimson face an ashen grey. As hastily as his larger physique allowed, he turned towards the key bearers and Raphael, visibly shaken, and spoke to them all in a hesitant and panicked stutter:
"R-r-r-u-n-n-n! It's not human…the Bur…"
Bits of flesh flew in all directions as a blast of eldritch energy, the colour of blood, slammed into the innkeeper, scattering his body and bones across the upper landing. Following this horrific display, a single masculine voice could be heard coming from the taproom of the inn – the voice was calm, with an air of control and an almost unearthly tone to it:
"Find me the wielders of the keys of NeMoren – in pieces if need be. Destroy the inn and the remaining inhabitants. The prophecies of Medivh will not come to pass."
An obviously stunned Raphael quickly glanced at everyone before simply stating:
"We need to get out of here….now!"
With blistering speed, Raphael had stowed his bow in favour of the silver metallic rod that he had held earlier. Stepping back and pointing the device towards the doorway opposite him, he uttered a strange phrase that could only assumed to be some kind of magical trigger. Nothing happened…
Attention was torn away from Raphael's actions as footfalls could be heard coming from the stairwell that leads from the bar up to the first floor landing.
Rage, unsure if what Raphael was trying to do, opened the door in the doorway that Raphael was pointing the rod at. The doorway led to a plain, simply furnished bedroom with a window letting in the small sliver of moonlight available in the twilight. Asking Raphael what he is trying to do, he replied with "Trying to use this damn piece of junk to get us out of here…but it's not working!"
The large Tauren used his agility and technique gained from his monkish training to smash through the window, tumbling safely to the ground as he landed surely on his feat. Following suit, Magnus Khelidan thought discretion was the better part of valour and launched himself out through the inn's second storey window, tumbling gracefully to a safe landing below.
Gorax, not wanting to leave their guide behind, grabbed Raphael as he fumbled with his magical rod and threw him out the same window that the others had used, sending their newfound compatriot flying face-down into the ground. Raphael moaned slightly as he began to raise himself off the ground, bruised with blood pouring from his nose.
Seeing his brother saving their new friend, Gozer used the time available to him to shut the door to the inn's small bedroom, locking it with the small door lock. The twin Orc brothers were left in the inn's small bedroom, door barred against the unknown menace.
Soon whatever was coming up the stairs had reached the landing, stopping momentarily (Gozer judged this from the footsteps) before heading straight to the door behind which were both Gorax and Gozer. Banging could be heard from beyond the door as the creatures tried unsuccessfully to enter – however the wooden door and its less than adequate lock was definitely not going to hold whatever was trying to gain entry for long. Hissing and snarling similar to wild beasts could be heard coming from Gozer's would be attackers…
Taking the next available opportunity, Gorax also jumped out the window. The Orc, large in stature, was not particularly graceful and ended up landing awkwardly on the street below, knocking himself out in the process. Gozar quickly followed his brother, landing no less gracefully but his hardy constitution and a bit of good luck saw him walking away with little injury from the surprise descent.
Meanwhile, Raphael having recovered from his impromptu flight, dusted himself off all the while muttering about not getting paid enough, refocused his efforts on activating the rod he had managed to keep hold off through the whole fiasco. Unlike his previous attempt, the magic of the rod worked as a swirling mass of multicoloured energy appeared in the alley between the inn and another building. His timing was impeccable as the flickering of flames were glimpsed coming from the inn, along with the smell of smoke.
Raphael, a small smile creeping across his face with the successful use of the rod, turned to the group assembled on the ground around him:
"It's working now…we need to get out of here before whatever is after us actually catches up with us!"
Not needing a second prompt, Magnus Khelidan and Mistlilly ‘Rage’ Ragetotem walked gingerly through the magic portal, closely followed by Raphael himself. Stopping to scoop up his now unconscious brother, Gozer was about to step through the portal himself as he managed to glimpse what had been chasing them – appearing at the now smashed inn window were four voluptuous and scantily clad women, their curvacious bodies framed with shoulder length, raven black hair. Supple blue-tinged skin gave the women an otherworldly look, as did the gaping maw rimmed with jagged, shark-like teeth that replaced their faces in their entirety. It was these orifices that were drooling, snapping and hissing as the characters all disappeared from view.
Gozer simply grunted, weighing up the merits of these "women" over those of his own Orc clan, and walked slowly but surely into the magical opening…