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Cade finishes second breakfast and the young group heads to the town square.
The bells atop the Temple of Erastil toll their midday song, echoing throughout the quiet town of Kassen. As the peals begin to fade, the first of the townsfolk make their way into the square, dressed in black, as if attending a funeral. They slowly fill the square, moving quietly across the cold, hard ground, their eyes downcast and mournful. After a few moments, a murmur passes through the crowd and it slowly parts to let Mayor Uptal and Father Rantal Prasst through. The mayor leads the way with a tarnished silver lantern. Behind him, Father Prasst leads an old pony dragging a cart laden with backpacks and supplies.
Once he reaches the center of the crowd, Mayor Uptal stops and calls out to the assembled townsfolk. “Once again the winter winds blow through the Fangwood, marking the end of another harvest. There are wolves in the woods, howling at our walls, and serpents in our shadows, waiting to strike. Just as it was one hundred and seventy-four years ago, when Kassen himself left these walls to protect us, so it is today. Where are the heroes? Where are the brave folk that will venture out to Kassen’s tomb and retrieve the flame to keep this community safe for another winter?”
Moltus steps forward from the crowd and gestures impatiently toward your group. "Are ye blind? They be right there, damned fool!"
Those gathered chuckle, despite the serious nature of the event. "Yes, yes, we know that!" Father Prasst chides the old sorcerer. "It was a rhetorical question, you nincompoop!"
"What's religion got to do with it?" Moltus stamps his foot and looks ready to roll up his sleeves, but some of his family intercept and lead him back to the crowd.
Clearing his throat, Mayor Uptal turns back to your group. "We have gathered supplies to aid you on your journey." He gestures to the cart which has a backpack for each member of the group. He then raises the lantern. "Who is to have the honor of carrying the lantern?"
Each backpack contains 5 days’ worth of rations, a small tent, a winter blanket, and a full waterskin. In addition, the following items are spread out among the PCs’ backpacks, distributed as evenly as possible: 50 feet of hempen rope, a box containing tinder and three tindertwigs, a labeled potion of cure light wounds, three torches, a grappling hook, a small bottle of local brandy, and the Trail Map that leads from Kassen to the Crypt of the Everflame.
Please indicate who is carrying what.