Cret and Vendara moved to investigate the tree while the rest of the group (with Liam) stayed back several yards. Cret sensed a powerful lifeforce emanating from the tree. Vendara was able to instinctively sense that it was a reincarnation point for deva, although it had not yet been used.
Shortly after investigating the tree the group where attacked by a covey of five dusk hags and their trio of trained wolves. The lesser hags were only a minor annoyance, and Cret took out one of the wolves and all of them with support from Kathra. Meanwhile Zzigourd, Rolen, and Vendara were taking on the hag’s leader and the other two wolves. Everything was going fine until Zzigourd ended up getting dunked in the river by the lead hag, and Vendara ended up getting pinned down by the two wolves. Once Zzigourd, Cret, and Kathra rejoined Rolen and Vendara they finished up the wolves with very little difficulty.
Although the fight was fairly short, Vendara was not in the best of shape afterwards.
During the battle Rolen noticed a fairly large opening in the Jerachoa Tree several feet above his head, but did not have time to investigate. The group settled down for a brief rest.
After resting near the Jerachoa tree the group decided to investigate the opening. Zzigourd and Cret both attempted to climb its branchless lower trunk but were unsuccessful. Eventually Cret managed to secure his rope to a branch a few feet above the opening and Zzigourd volunteered to climb up. While the rest of the group stood tensely ready for an ambush or some kind of magical trap, Vendara sent her raven familiar to enter the opening while Zzigour hang on the rope at the entrance.
After Vendara reported there was a wicker basket and a glowing staff inside, Zzigour tied to rope around his waist and entered.
A couple of minutes later, Zzigourd had the wicker basket and the staff on the ground and Vendara examined them while Cret wound and stowed his rope.
Liam told the group they were getting near Jala’s house.