While the group was still sound asleep, Eric entered the barn with a tray of food. "Oh," he exclaimed softly. "I didn't know y'all were still asleep. I'll just umm...
" He awkwardly made his way in and found a place to set the food down. "We tend to be early risers here in Stranded Green," he chuckled nervously.
"Take your time, and if you need anything, my wife and I will be in our store." He quickly, and as quietly as her could muster, left the group to their own devices.
The group slowly crawled out of their respective makeshift beds for the night and congregated around the breakfast Eric has brought them.
A bowl of porridge, a bowl of eggs, rolls, jam, and three mugs of steaming hot drink.
They divided the breakfast amongst themselves, and it was evident that the meal cost more than two silver to make.
As they ate breakfast, the group began to discuss the owlbear problem they had come to solve. "You know, I didn't know that owlbears could fly."
"Well, they are part owl," Darlynn murmured sarcastically. She then took a long sip of the hot milk tea they had been given. There was a taste of honey as well.
Odarod shot Darlynn a look which she ignored to focus on the food. With Darlynn ignoring him, Odarod turned his focus back to Angus. "So, if these things can fly, they're definitely not owlbears.
"Well, what would they be then?"
Odarod bit into one of the rolls before leaning back in his make-shift seat. "Griffons if I had to guess."
"What do you know about them."
Odarod quickly racked his head as he grabbed another roll and tore it in half. "Well, I know they have the head of an eagle and the body of a lion.
They also tend to have talons for their front legs and normal lion's legs in the back. Of course, they have large wings to help them fly." He inhaled deeply before letting out a huff of air.
"That's about it."
Angus turned to Darlynn, a soft smile on his face. "What about you? Have you ever read anything about griffons before?"
Darlynn paused as information on griffons bubbled to the surface and granted her a small rush of endorphins. "They typically live on cliffsides like the ones near the town.
They lay eggs which means they have nests to house them. Finally, they tend to prey on larger animals like cattle and horses. Humans tend not to be their choice of prey.
If humans do get attacked and die, it's most likely because the griffons were after their horse and the humans just got in the way.
" That wasn't all she knew, but she didn't feel like keying the group on the fact that they could be mounts if raised from birth.
She'd rather cross that bridge after getting her hands on an egg for herself.
Angus could tell she was holding something back from the group, but he didn't press her further.
He had gotten to know her well, and while she wasn't always upfront, he felt he could trust her to tell them more if the need arose.
With that breakfast came to a close, and the group decided to locate the town's mayor in hopes he could provide more information on the "owlbear" attacks that had been happening.
The town was much more alive than when the group had arrived the night before. Everyone seemed to be hard at work. The pace wasn't quick, but there was a consistent flow to it.
Everyone had a job to do, and they were on top of it. No one seemed to miss a beat as the group strolled through the town after being pointed towards where the mayor might be.
They found him with another, more terrified man. The frightened man clutched tightly to a chicken, tears in his eyes.
"What if they come after Clarice? They already took some of my cows," the man sobbed as he stroked the chicken's head. "I don't think I would be able to take it if they took her too.
" The chicken that the group assumed to be Clarice seemed annoyed by the man but continued to tolerate his behavior.
Angus took a step closer to the two men and asked if there was anything he could do to help. His offer to help led to a conversation revolving around the owlbear issue.
From there, Angus let the mayor know that that was why the Defenders of Avalon had come to Stranded Green.
Relief seemed to wash over the mayor who let them know that the town would owe the group a debt of gratitude if they managed to solve the problem.
Other topics of conversation revolved around the other band of adventurers as well as the occupied room at the inn.
"Ah, the inn's only room is currently being rented by a purple lady. She actually looks quite a bit like you," Mayor Topaz remarks as he looks Angus up and down.
"Oh, so she's a tiefling?" Angus seemed a bit excited by the news.
The mayor nodded in response. "I suppose so."
With those final words, Angus parted from the mayor and his distressed companion. "Well, do we want to look for that tiefling or the other party? Maybe they could help us with the griffons."
"We don't know a thing about them," Darlynn remarked, a tad incredulous at the suggestion. "We don't know if they're good or not."
"I guess you're right," Angus sighed. "Then should we just head to the cliffs then?"
"I'm not opposed, but before we go, should we consider using the horses we have as bait? We might be able to lure the griffons out.
" Darlynn turned as she spoke and quickly began to make her way back to the barn they had left the horses at.
"Well, we can, but just because we use them as bait doesn't mean they have to die, right," Angus inquired, hopeful they wouldn't have to actually sacrifice the horses.
"Well, it's not a sure thing they'd die. It's only a nine out of ten chance," Darlynn smirked. Both Angus and Odarod grimaced, but they both agreed to bring the horses along.
Angus was adamant that they would attempt to save the horses if they could, even if they were going to be used as bait.