Galen requested that Petrus and Grak Bonebreaker, an Orc bladesman apprentice, go to Ustalav to meet with Petrus’s uncle, Petrus the Elder, who was acting as a Mivonian ambassador to the city of Novgorod.
Grak asked if there would be any shinnies that he’d be able to collect or if there were any dragons or giants to fight; like most Orcs, he liked shinnies and fighting. Galen said that if they could procure a giant’s head somehow, he’d pay handsomely for it (literally: I’ll give you lots of shinnies if you could bring me a giant’s head). Petrus was more interested in seeing his uncle again and didn’t concern himself with the desires of the Orc bladesman apprentice, something that he’d come to regret (at least mildly) later.
After the discussion of fighting and loot between the wisened, old wizard and the simpleton Orc, Galen suggested the Petrus and Grak fly into the city of Novgorod, as it would be most appropriate. He cast a fly spell on them and allowed them to practice for a minute before teleporting them both to a location very near the city. As they flew into the Novgorod, they landed on a platform and were greeted by Mikial, a warrior-guard of the princess. Mikial took the two to Petrus the Elder’s room while he explained a bit about the culture and political structures in Novgorod.
The city of Novgorod, like all of the other major Ustalavian cities, was ruled by a sorceress, one of the seven daughters of the Ice Queen of Ustalav. Despite being called a daughter, there was no necessary blood relation to the queen; adoption was a viable means of getting the right people in the right places so Ustalav could be ruled without problem. The Ice Queen’s daughter, and the ruler of Novgorod, was named Zoyenka. Almost all of the adults were martially trained, though it was the females who ruled society.
The Princess Zoyenka had requested that Petrus the Elder, called Venenarius to those in this local, tutor her daughter, Teska, in the ways of wizardry. Venenarius found the girl difficult to teach because of her relatively short attention span and her seeming lack of desire to do much of anything magical. Venenarius was glad to see Petrus and Grak and asked them if they wouldn’t mind trying to tutor the girl, because she was more their age than his and it would give him opportunity to take care of some other business. Petrus and Grak agreed and went to seek out the young girl, who was in the training arena.
Petrus watched Teska from a distance and quickly determined that even as a sorceress she was not particularly good. After she was finished with her practice, Petrus and Grak introduced themselves. Teska immediately asked them about stories from other lands and Grak started talking about dragons and giants. Petrus tried to bring the topic back around to magic and thought that perhaps Teska might be suited to another magical profession other than sorcery or wizardry. Before he could suggest that she study something else, she had said that what she really needed was to prove herself to everyone else by fighting and killing a giant. Grak was completely agreeable to fighting a giant, as he wanted the giant’s head. Despite his great knowledge, Petrus couldn’t determine the wisest method to dissuade the two from something so obviously dangerous and ended up having to accompany the two on their quest to fight a giant.
Teska told the two to get whatever they needed and to meet her back in the training room. Petrus, hoping that his uncle was still in his room, returned to his uncle’s room to try to get him to stop the impetuousness of the princess’s daughter. Unfortunately he wasn’t in his room, so Petrus did the best he could; he borrowed a few of his uncle’s items, namely a staff of fire and potions of healing and mage armor.
Returning to the training arena, Petrus and Grak found Teska standing there with some type of magic artifact that was used for teleporting. She requested the two stand quietly with her so she could concentrate on the location they were teleporting to and the artifact would instantly transport them there. Just as they were being teleported, Petrus reached over and pinched Teska, hoping to break her concentration and force them to remain in the training room. Unfortunately it didn’t work and they were transported to a barren snow field in the mountains.
Grak immediately noted that there was smoke and a residence of some type up the side of the mountain a bit. The three quickly made their way toward the residence and Grak offered to check it out. It was some type of hunting lodge for frost giants and a rather old one was home and noticed the Orc. The giant welcomed Grak into his home and Grak asked if he could have the giant’s head, to which the giant declined.
Teska and Petrus followed Grak into the giant’s home. The giant offered the three soup and told them of the giants being overthrown by a king and then sometime shortly afterward the rise of the Ustalavian matriarchal society coming into power. The giants have been trying to figure out any way possible to retake the land they’d lost. Grak let it slip that Teska was the princess’s daughter and the giant decided that they all were to be taken to the hall of the giant king so the king could use them to leverage more land back from the Ustalavians.
Not wanting to be captured, Petrus immediately went invisible and found a spot out of the way of any possible action. Teska was captured by the giant and Grak immediately attacked the giant. Petrus summoned a small fire elemental to attack the giant as Teska was thrown into a large burlap bag. Grak attacked again as the giant stomped the elemental out. Petrus in the mean time had summoned a swarm of bats to attack the giant. The giant attacked Grak and Grak attacked him back. Petrus made sure the swarm continued attacking the giant while Teska cut a hole in the bag and tried to get away. Grak attacked again and was picked up and crushed in the giant’s hand, causing him to be grievously injured. Due to his Orc ferocity, Grak was able to continue attacking the giant. As the bats swarmed him, the giant grabbed Teska as she tried to attack him and then dropped her as Grak attacked him. The giant crushed Grak with a mighty blow, killing him. Petrus used the staff of fire to incinerate the top of the giant’s body in a fireball, killing him.
Teska was elated that the giant was dead and proclaimed that is was due to her abilities that the giant was dead. She was so pleased with herself and the accolades she knew she’d receive from home. She mentioned that Grak would receive an honorable burial, while Petrus scavenged things from the giant’s body (body parts and fluids to use as reagents), hunting lodge (silver coins), and Grak’s body (40gp, Ioun stone of continual flame).
The two returned with Grak’s body to Novogrod, where Teska was proclaimed a hero. Petrus wasn’t really on speaking terms with her, as it’d cost Mivon a good apprentice bladesman, but more importantly had put him in unnecessary danger. Petrus met with his uncle and explained the situation. His uncle acknowledged that the young apprentice had done the best he could with the circumstances given him. Petrus returned all of the things he’d borrowed and went to Grak’s burial service. After the burial of Grak, Petrus returned to Mivon to continue his studies.