Artorias leads the group to a spot in the woods where he opens a primordial pathway. He insists that he will travel with Rebecca to another area of this realm to continue the hunt, and Rayan, Mort, Sina, James, and Noah would investigate this known entryway.
On the other side, the group almost immediately found oversized footprints that may have involved Helena. In order to follow the tracks, however, the group was confronted with odd flowers that elicited remarkable features when pollinated by giant bees. Noah’s tracking and survival abilities were able to direct them through the dangerous brush.
Finding the tracks led beyond impassable peaks, the group had to set out to find an alternate way to circumvent the mountains. They encountered a small village of goblins and Rayan re-encountered Wikx, who had made this his new home. They met with the village chieftain, a mage named Bomba who offered to passages past the mountains – a giant spider to the northeast or a dangerous forest of illusions to the south.
He also spoke of many dangers – Golden Calves that were worshipped and dangerous giant chickens. He also indicated that the goblins had sent a party out to find water at a nearby lake.
Wikx, now workshipping _The Mother Crow as a goddess, came with them as a guide. They easily passed through the illusionary forest due to Rayan’s immunity to illusions. Beyond, they were able to offer flowers as an offering to bypass the calves.
Rayan, eager to get through this ordeal as quickly as possible, suggested to wikx in annoyance that he should worship the giant chicken as Sadie was dead. He suggested he ask it for passage, which of course led to him being attacked. Despite moving past it, it was clear Sina was not willing to let Wikx die like this and Mort jumped in to action.
Mort’s vicious assault distracted the chicken while James tried to take a good shot. Realizing the fight had begun, Rayan also shot at the chicken, but not before Noah charged it in a beastly grapple, dragging it to the floor. Unfortunately, Rayan’s distracted nature led to him firing anyway and striking Noah.
Noah began a primal battle of wills for supremacy, and defiantly made the chicken his bitch. He then road it as the group proceeded.
Next, the group found a junkyard of vehicles collected over a number of years. Rayan found a working guitar that he offered to Sina as an apology for risking wikx’s life, while Mort found a walkie talkie in which he heard german voices.
At the lake, the group found the remains of the goblins as well as a drunk treant bemoaning the loss of his bride. Some quick talking led to the group bypassing this creature. Afterwards, Sina’s musical talents came in handy (as well as her new guitar) as she performed with a drum playing ogre where a poor audition meant death. Beyond, they found the mouth of a cave – Helena’s new home….
…together the group discussed and decided that there was no just cause in further investigating Helena’s lair. There was little evidence she was attempting to attack our world or endanger anyone. Instead, the group decided (ignoring mort’s objections) to report back to Artorias what their scouting had uncovered.
After laying to rest the fallen goblins and celebrating with a feast, the group returned home. Artorias and Rebecca were already back at the retreat and he was eager to hear what the group had found. Seemingly annoyed , but satisfied – Artorias retreated upstairs where he planned to form another expedition to hunt and kill Helena.
Rayan openly suggested that they use his prior statements where he planned to usurp Ricky as leverage to protect Helena, but the others were loathe to so quickly go to such an option. It mattered not, as Artorias had overheard them. Perhaps realizing how at risk he was, a confrontation led to the building burning down while Rebecca and Artorias fled by car. Rayan ran back in to the flaming building to rescue the book Shebaka as well as Phoebe’s diary.
The group realized they had no quick way home and the fires were approaching, so went with the least bad option – a new pathway, this one taking them to Rayan’s Lair.