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Murder at Menutson Academy
The Mithral Guard was asked to send representatives to Menutson Academy to deal with an unspecified problem involving the student body. When the guardians arrived, they were informed that a string of murders had taken place across the school’s campus, leaving the students terrified. Headmaster Talfan Mar didn’t want news of the incidents spreading, however, so he elected to hide the presence of the Mithral Guard, assigning each guardian the role of a substitute teacher.
The following morning, each guardian set out to teach his class. Able taught history by weaving great tales of previous battles to perk the children’s interests. Daken taught a religion class about the wonders of the Kage, the Hunter at Dusk, and several of the students showed interest. Daa used his metal-crafting skills to create dangerous looking pieces of metal, and taught his students how to sell through intimidation. Vander decided that one of the most important parts of physical education was teaching his students how to take a punch, so he punched each of them in the face. Jimmy conducted a stirring speech about etiquette, claming that minutia is irrelevant, and that etiquette is about how to hold oneself and exact one’s will. Unfortunately, his students seemed less than moved, deferring to their former teachings on the subject. Singéd decided to teach his Health class about chemicals and how they can be used to alter the mortal body, but he underestimated the alchemical skills of his students, and they concocted superior chemical brews to prove it.
Lunchtime was punctuated by another attack. A girl was found dead with the ghost of an ancient Hethish warrior floating above her. After thorough investigation (and Vander’s fruitless attempts to grapple a gnome), they discovered the identity of the killer—a young student named Lathan Sojh. His actions, however, were not his own, and it was soon surmounted that he had been killing under the effects of a cursed wand, so noted when Singéd picked up the wand and attempted to murder his fellow guardians. Lathan claimed he found the wand while exploring nearby caves, so the guardians decided to go spelunking.
After clearing the rubble and disturbing a family of dire rats, the party ventured into the depths of the cave, noting that it appeared artifically rather than naturally constructed. Vander took it upon himself to be the party pincushion, and triggered the fire trap mounted high on the ceiling. After shrugging off the damage, the party found themselves in front of a door. Jimmy the rogue offered a cursory inspection and decided it wasn’t trapped, so Vander opened it. It was trapped, and a gelatinous cube fell on his head.
After dispatching the cube (against which Daken was nearly invulnerable), the party proceeded through the door to find a room filled with a strange, hovering mist two feet above the ground, statues lining the walls, and an altar of cursed wands at its center. They had only a few seconds to take in the sights, however, as darkness quickly fell upon the cave, and various guardians felt their faces gripped suddenly and viciously by the statues. Vander again took a beating and dropped to the floor, but eventually the party found the statues amidst the darkness and destroyed them. Jimmy snatched a brooch which had been used both to protect the altar from destruction and to power the constant charm effect that had lured Lathan into the cave. Upon returning to Baltis, the Mithral Guard issued a team of trained cursebreakers to return to the cave and clear it up, once and for all eliminating a public threat. The questions remain, however: if the cave was artificially formed, who, or what created it, and why?