As Toby Fare and Quispy pushed onward to search for Janma, the other adventurers spent a bit of time at the Laughing Goblin in getting to know each other and deciding what they wanted to next. Roscoe took a moment to as Fat Mar the waiter if he would want to sell the bar, however Fat Mar was not the owner and just gave Roscoe a questioning look and reminded him he was just a sweaty ‘ole waiter. The owner told him the bar was a family business and she would not sell right now, also with the rat infestation there was no way she could give that problem to a new owner. The new adventurers liked the sound of cleaning out some nasty rodents but the others who had barely escaped with life quickly told them how dangerous that would be.
Instead the adventurers, feeling rested and prepared, went on down the Iron Route to head towards Greenest, looking to catch up with their friend and help him in his quest.
Several miles outside of town the group ran into an ancient, rickety wooden bridge that was in terrible shape. They could year yelling and about halfway down the bridge an orc was dangling from twisted rope by one arm, holding onto a machete with the other. He was terrified and as the group looked down, they saw two crocs circling in the water, snapping up at the orc every once in awhile.
Rosce immediately took action, shooting one croc and wounding it. Seeing how effective that was Amadeus a shot at it as well and watched as it sank into the water. They shot the other croc as well, hoping to at least provide some safety to the orc who was just screaming away. Apparently he could not swim either so the crocs were not his only concern.
After a little chat about who should try stepping out onto the bridge, Barnstead took the lead, walking awkwardly until he got to the center near the orc, and then he slipped and caught himself with his massive weapon, using it to hold on until Roscoe could give him a hand. Lance and Amadeus worked on a plan to get rope onto everyone so they could pull him in while Roscoe danced lightly down to Barnstead, slipped and was lucky when Barnstead was able to grab him and toss him back up onto the bridge. Lance and Amadeus managed to get the end of the rope to the others and started to work their way across the bridge. Roscoe, forgetting momentarily that he was attached to the others leapt on down farther, yanking Amadeus and Lance forward into the rickety bridge.
Meanwhile Barnstead had managed to get up and pull the orc up whose arm was bleeding profusely. He said a little prayer, healing the orc and they continued across the bridge. Lance nimbly made it across most of the bridge until he came upon a large gap that happened to stretch over brush and promptly fell in, followed by Amadeus. Because of their tight quarters they could not see the giant crocodile standing in front of its nest and the other two were debating whether to attack or try to talk to it. The orc, having seen the predicament, ran off like a coward.
Tail twitching and anger in its voice, the croc asked why the group would have saved such an evil being as that orc who was trying to rob her nest. She had chased him out onto the bridge and her children were attempting to finish him off from the river and the group had killed them. She was not happy, but wasn’t really interested in fighting so when the group asked what they could do to make up for her loss she asked them to entertain her. Lance and Amadeus had climbed out of the pit by this point and no one was able to put on much of a show until Roscoe who sang a little ditty about baby crocs.
As he sang, the eggs began to hatch and the momma croc went over to it, and began eating the babies who were snakes as it turned out. The group was confused as to whether they should intervene and decided it was best to just move on.
Farther down the road in the chilly, damp weather the adventurers ran across a delightful looking old woman who was busy stirring some concoction in a cauldron. She seemed very happy to see the group and mentioned that Toby had passed through. She adamantly offered the group her special stew that was cooked “with a little of this, a little of that and a lot of love.” The guys were hungry after half a day of travel and the stew smelled better than anything they had run across before, so after thinking about it for a moment, Barnstead and Roscoe both went for some. It was the best stew they had ever had in their lives. As they finished and chatted some more, they began to shrink dramatically until they were no larger than an ant. Their gear and clothing left behind in a pile, the other two adventurers were shocked.
They questioned the old lady who appeared to have no idea what was going on, and then a little bug flew out of the cauldron and went for the grass. When pressed the old lady said maybe the bug was a fly or a wasp, she couldn’t be certain, everyone loves her stew. Lance went ahead and had a little, hoping to see where the others had gone. Amadeus continued to question the old lady for a few more minutes and after Lance failed to yell loud enough to tell him to eat the soup, Amadeus had just heard a loud squeak, he decided to go ahead and eat some stew too.
A lovely little pixie admitted that she had shrunk them because she was in dire need of help, at which point Barnstead who was a little miffed told her she could have just asked while they were large and had their gear to help. Being a young kid, she had done only what seemed best at the moment though and there was no way to get big again aside from waiting for the potion to wear off. She lead the group to a large crack in the ground where she had accidentally dropped her pixie dust. Being afraid of the dark and claustrophobic, she could not go down to retrieve it and hoped the adventurers could help.
Barnstead tried climbing down and made it a few feet before getting stuck, Roscoe, Lance and Amadeus brainstormed about best options. Amadeus ninja slapped some grass and tried to use a blade to put down the crack and Lance used a little magic to light up the bottom of the crevice so they could see better. After a bit Roscoe grew large again and after the rest joined him at full size they decided to shrink him again and hand in a thread of the rope to let him climb down and grab the dust.
This worked although part way down Roscoe slipped and landed on his butt in the dirt. Having told them to wait a couple minutes before pulling the rope back up though he was able to grab the vial of dust and the rope in time.
They gave the dust back to the pixie who was so happy to have it back that she gave each of them just a little bit to enjoy and then flitted off to her family as it was getting dark out.
The group decided to set up camp in the clearing and as they were preparing, they were ambushed by a group of goblins and an orc! The orc blasted into the clearing and smashed at Barnstead immediately and Roscoe dispatched of him with an arrow while the other goblins ran into the clearing. Two were armed, making it difficult to get a clear shot but after some fierce battling they were killed along with a hobgoblin. Roscoe took some time to search through their corpses, finding a vial of red powder and a marble elephant along with 15 gp worth of gems while Lance inspected the goblin armor to decide if it was worth anything. When asked whether he had found anything of value, Roscoe said no, which Barnstead called him out on so he mentioned the elephant. The rest of the evening passed uneventfully although the group took turns watching out for more trouble just in case.