Secret War

Mandragora

Young halfling Rita needed rescuing from bandits. Companion, Job turns into plantlike monster. Baron Baltac invites the party to his castle and explains the Mandragoran curse. Party agrees to retrieve the heart of a mandragora tree in exchange for 15,000 gp and a cure for Casca. Rebels break in and take her. Party follows them but their leader, Duncan, explains that they need their help to fight against the tyrant Baltac who wants to use the extract to weaponize His soldiers. Undead rise in response to Krough’s brand. Casca heals them.
At mandragora town, a nun stops the fighting and pleads for their case, telling the story of Nikoli who brought the disease to the villagers. Claims these people live happier lives because of it. Despite this, the party kills the tree, but the nun, Estereth, take the heart and flees outside only to be met by Baron Baltac’s guards. She burns to death in the fire rather than give up Nikoli. Before any fighting can begin, the Goristro, Nosferato Zog, arrives telling the party how Lord Griffith has returned and summoned him to retrieve something from the ruins of Zhentil Keep. He leaves after Krough cleaves one of his horns off.
Casca has been captured so the party fights their way to the throne room, using a young girl they found in the keep as a hostage. She turns out to be Baltac’s wife, kept young and innocent through the extrac. Baltac drinks it himself and changes and is killed by the party. Casca is inside a mandragora monster. Iados frees her as the others destroy the creature. The villagers are freed from the curse. Rita bids them farewell.

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