The Forgotten Path
It is 1360 DR (Dale Reckoning), The Year of the Turret. Two years have passed since the Time of Troubles befell Faerun and all of Toril. Things are starting to return to normal, whatever that means. The death of deities and the ascension of mortals to godhood feels like the beginning of a long era of upheaval.
None of that matters to you now though! The day has finally arrived, Cormyr’s Annual Adventurers Tournament is here, and for your own personal reasons YOU have entered the tournament! Even though there will be hundreds of competitors you KNOW you are ready and merely see it as a formality that the tournament requires all first time entries to compete in the rookie’s bracket. The fact you barely managed to achieve the lowest ranked position in your category is not only disheartening but a jarring reality check!
This is not to say you did not do well, you did manage to rank unlike dozens of other adventurers, it is just that you achieved the lowest recognized position in your category. As a result no other adventuring parties or adventures have approached you to join them. This means you will be automatically grouped with the lowest ranking combatants from other categories! Such a situation is not uncommon and has in fact become something of an institution to many who follow the tournament and its champions. Many veterans of the tournament see it has a rite of passage to be a Rook! For that is what you and the other members of your party now are, The Rooks.
The Rooks is the “affectionate” name given to the party made up of all bottom ranked rookies. It is not a name you have given yourself and no matter what banner or name your party may choose to use (if one at all) until at least the next tournament your group will be referred to as ‘The Rooks’ by anyone who is aware of your standing in the tournament. Though the title of the group is not officially recognized by the tournament organizers, the status of being a Rook is attached to you individually now and has no bearing on whether or not the party stays together, disbands or if you join another adventuring group. You accept this title with resigned indignation knowing this “institution” has been going on for years and that it will only last until the next tournament.
Being a member of The Rooks isn’t all bad though. Ironically you have more status and renown than many of the other participates who ranked higher than you. While that does not guarantee all the attention will be positive it does guarantee work! In an effort to help the lowest ranking group (and to offset some of the disadvantages of being a member of The Rooks) the kingdom of Cormyr assigns tasks exclusively to the group for the rest of the year in an effort to help its members build their reputation as capable adventurers.
Your first assigned task is to investigate the recent and increasingly aggressive goblin raids on the hamlet of Barrow’s Edge…