Note–I decided to roll the FU dice to determine if any of the men-at-arms have knowledge about Coot’s Mill. Either they have lived in the village or possible have a relative there.
Results…Catamont…result=6, Yes, and! I decide that Catamont has a mother in the village. Asking a few more questions about their relationship results in…Catamont’s mother works in the rundown ale tent in Coot’s Mill. She is not a nice person, and probably knows some information on the bandits to the south. She doesn’t have any affection for her son but doesn’t want to see him hurt. Catamont was essentially on his own when he first encountered Arden and Company. He won’t tell Arden about her unless they meet.
Egg Barkley is a resident of Coot’s Mill. He fell off a ladder and broke his leg. This kept him from working in the mill or as a woodcutter until healed. Egg was fortunate enough to be looking for work when Arden and Company were looking for men-at-arms. Egg has a daughter and son-in-law living in the town of Bree to the south. Egg cautions Arden that the villagers will be closed lipped regarding the bandits. He suggests the ale tent in town may on occasion be visited by a bandit looking to secure ale for the others. Egg doesn’t know any bandits by sight nor their location.
Goat Bentley wandered up from the south. He has no family in the area. Arden’s conversations with him revealed he had spent some time in jail in the capital city of Careen in the country of Irie. He would say the reason. Goat has heard of bandits attacking lone and unwary travelers, but he knows no more than that.
Handsome Brune has tried his hand at mining and merchant caravan guard duty. His last job left him stranded at the Keep. His employer decided to sneak out of town one evening after cheating one of the local tradesmen. Handsome was drunk at the time and actually didn’t care since he had been paid. Handsome is a stranger to the area and knows little about the bandits besides the encounters they recently had.
Mecklin R’bonic is foreign born and did not reside at the mill. He was in the same company as Handsome. The merchant left quietly in the night, leaving Mecklin with no job.
Arden and Egg take a ride out to Coot’s Mill. It is about 1/4 mile south of the Keep, located south of the fork in the road with a sawmill on the river. Coot’s Mill is a ramshackle collection of tents, lean-to’s, and small huts, mixed in with several larger buildings. Wood millers work here cutting logs brought in from the forest. Most of the lumber felled by the woodsmen have been “ringed” or bark removed in a ring around the tree and then left standing to dry. The trees are then cut and brought to the mill for sawing into boards.
All told, there are about 75 people living at Coot’s Mill and working in the mill or part of one of the lumber companies in the area.
Arden could sense that Catamont wasn’t wanting to ride out to the village. Egg is happy to leave the Keep for some fresh air. They make the short ride to the village.
That is all for now. Perhaps Arden and Egg will stir up some trouble in the village or gain a clue.
More to come….