Any suggestions for a side quest to allow a party of 4 to work off at least part of the cost of a Raise Dead before they get into The Skinsaw Murders?
My party just killed Nualia, but she killed the party ranger first. They found the Shadows and ran, left the rope bridge to the island hanging with an angry horse stuck up there, and built a raft to get back to land.
Now they've got Lyrie and Orik as prisoners and Sherriff Hemlock is commissioning the party to take them to Magnimar for trial. They're also planning on buying a Raise Dead for the ranger. They've got just enough money to pay for the raise, but they've missed a significant chunk of treasure and don't appear to want to head back to Thistletop any time soon.
I'd like to turn this into an opportunity to add some story: Either give the players the feeling that they've finally tied up the Lamashtu story line, or foreshadow some of the Skinsaw Murders arc, or perhaps give them a red herring so they think they know something about the world (maybe relating to Aldern Foxglove or Nualia) that really isn't true.
Some ideas I've had: A group of Swaithe Demons (Lamashtu's servants from Inner Sea Gods) have taken up residence somewhere outside Magnimar and are killing off farmers. Possibly tie them in with the Sandpoint Devil? That might misdirect them when they find out about outlying farms getting raided near Sandpoint.
Another possibility is to have them destroy the altars and deplete the Runewell in Thistletop and the Catacombs of Wrath. But I'm not sure how to make that anything other than a boring straightforward fight and give them the feeling that I'm railroading them into completing the sections of dungeons they've skipped.
Or, possibly have them clean out a goblin tribe?
Any other ideas?