The Bandits of Blackrock was a promotion that ran prior to the start of the Thunderstone Quest Kickstarter in 2017. The following is the fiction that was revealed during that promotion. There is no Quest like the Quests in the game; the Bandits appear in the Thunderstone Quest Rewards as extra monsters you can us in homebrew Quests of your own design.
The Bandits of Black Rock
By Brett Satkowiak
“Open the gates!” the call went out. What passed through them afterward shook the peace of Thunderstone Keep. His clothing gave him away as a merchant and a wealthy one at that, but he looked as if he’d just come home from the battlefront. One leg was visibly broken, the fabric around it torn and shredded. His shirt was stained red with two long slashes exposing deep bruises underneath. His hair and beard were matted with dried blood from a wound behind his temple. A number of women gasped and various men began to murmur their concern as two guards carried the broken man from the portcullis to a low wall near the gate.
“What’s all this about?” Rennard, the Elder of the Keep, shouted as he pushed his way through the crowd. “Dear heaven!” he whispered, before calling for water and ordering a bed be readied at the inn. He turned back to the newcomer. “Sir, these are worrisome wounds. You must tell us where they came from.”
The merchant drank furiously from the bucket drawn for him before spurting out, “Bandits! In the pass!” The noise in the crowd rose once more as Rennard raised a hand to stop it. The merchant winced in pain as he continued. “Our caravan was following the river toward the sea when we reached the Black Rocks and were attacked. A party of raiders, strong and fierce! They killed our guard and so many others!”
“How on earth did you escape?” Rennard prodded.
“My carriage was upended, leaving me unconscious for most of the battle. They must have passed over, thinking me dead. When I realized what had happened, I snuck away to the river and drifted at its mercy until I reached the ford. The road led me here.”
“Ease your mind, good sir. You are safe now. Please try to rest.”
“Thank you,” he sighed. “I only wish I could have done more for that poor girl.”
Rennard spun back on him once more. “Girl?”
“There was a maiden, from of the towns in the Vale. She traveled with us and kept to herself. Before my escape, I saw their leader, a man with dark robes and elven features, lead her away, as he ordered the others to burn the remains. I can only imagine what horrors she’s experiencing now.”
The elder asked the guards to deliver him to the inn before calling out to the crowds. “The Bandits of Black Rock have struck again! That pass is essential to our peace here, and furthermore, they have now captured a young woman. We will not leave her fate in their hands. I call for volunteers to free this woman and finally rout these marauders once and for all. So I ask … who will fight for us?”
[ more of this story will be posted soon! ]