After their abortive efforts at Eagle’s Nest last time, the party headed south on the trails and then eastwards, following the missing scouting party of the year before. They encountered thicker vegetation than they expected, so they took a side trip to Sittard to pick up falchions and other other instruments. On the way there, they encountered a Soul Besh, or rather, the Soul Besh encountered the front grate of a grav truck traveling at 45 mph. It survived, but just barely, and dragged itself into the forest while the party cleaned a lot of gunk off the windshield. On the way back, the bear was attacked by a Buzzer (Giant Wasp) but they fought it off.
After travelling east and chopping vegetation in the August heat, the party was approached by a voice in their heads, a voice that emanated from Berberis, a mobile and sentient Warty Barberry. Berberis warned them of the Blue Winseen they were about to enter, and the two Parn that lay beyond. Wrench burned the Winseen with his radiated eyes, and finished it off by building a fire on the final five foot ring. When the Parn attacked, they tore through Growler’s force field and did great damage to both Growler and Wrench before they died. Afterwards, the party found the bodies of three of last year’s scouts and their gear, and Berberis explained that Rowlff and Phero had escaped but never returned.
The party brought Berberis with them. Their next encounter was a river that needed fording. The grav truck could cross, but not the mechanic’s cart they were towing behind it. A hasty raft was built and the cart put on it, with the grav truck pulling it into the water. The tow rope snapped and the raft headed downstream. Wrench jumped overboard thinking he would tow it to shore, but he forgot he was wearing all his armor and metal equipment and went straight to the bottom. He cut off much of his gear and managed to make it to the surface, where Berberis rescued him with telekinetic flight. Meanwhile, Corinne tried to use the truck to stop the cart, forgetting that the truck floated about two feet off the surface and therefore began to push the cart off the raft rather than pushing the raft. She backed off, and tried a number of stratagems to direct the raft to the opposite shore, with Berberis joining her in that effort as the raft floated across the lake downstream. They reached the other shore, but like Wrench before her, Corrine jumped into the water and slipped on the rocks as the raft ground over her. She managed to squirm out before she drowned, and then she and Berberis managed to hook up the cart again and tow it to safety some hundred years upstream on the shore and then 100 yards inland, where they found another overgrown trail (or perhaps the same one?). When they recovered, they took the grav truck back across the lake and picked up Growler and Wrench. The whole time, I was rolling for lake encounters. Everyone knows that the waters of Mutant World are one of the most dangerous places to be, but no encounters came up, despite many rolls for them.
That night two Dabbers fooled Wrench into giving three power cells to the “Spirit of the Glade.” They also stole items out of the truck’s glove box. The party would not leave the truck unlocked again. In the morning, the truck was able to show the faces of the thieves (captured by its cab camera) to its owner.
A bit wiser, the party continued on to Ostenfeld, an enormous village surrounded by dangerous plants and protected by hundreds of spear-wielding warriors with six arms. Boipelo, a PSH and one of the Council of the Six, came out to speak with the party and convinced the rest of the Council not to kill them that night. Instead, Boipelo argued that they might be useful allies, and pumped the party for information before frankly telling them that the party would not be allowed into Ostenfeld until they proved their worth, especially because they were accompanied by a bear from the north, where they had heard of the attacks by Spartak on PSH settlements.
The night ended with the party continuing south on the trail, and happening across a steam tunnel that under normal circumstances would have been unseen. They hid the truck, put Glysock inside of it, locked the doors, and camouflaged it. Berberis stayed with the truck because he did not function well in the dark, but Corinne, Wrench, and Growler entered the long tunnel. At the end they were stopped by a force that turned anything that crossed the final feet into a cloud of powder. The party will spend the next week or so until the next game trying to think of a solution.
The party was supposed to encountered Ostenfeld much earlier in their careers, when they were less well-armed and therefore less suspicious to the Council. Sheldon had led the party west rather than east, so their arrival was delayed long enough for them to be viewed as a threat. Luckily, they were not ambushed by the 400 warriors that might have attacked if Boipelo had not convinced the Council to wait and see.