After a few days journey the merchant and party run out of road. They continue their trek on the plains. Phil approaches an area he lost his wagon to last month. Brigands accosted him by a copse of trees and took all his goods and left him to walk back to Pitax empty handed. To him that was better than dead, but he asked his bodyguards if they could check up ahead to ensure it was safe this time. It was clear and sunny, but chilly with a high of 5 degrees Celsius.
Lance, Kalee and a partially blind Oracle volunteered to scout out the situation while the others stayed behind at the wagon in case it got attacked while the small group was out investigating. They came upon a bloodied crying little girl in the middle of the copse of trees. As they approached her to see what was wrong, they were ambushed by 3 Brigands. Kalee was knocked unconscious, however Lance and the Oracle were able to give enough punishment to the Brigands to send two to their graves and one running.
One of the Brigands had the crying child, and was able to get to his horse and gallop away. Not without difficulty however, as Lance almost scared the horse enough to buck the final Brigand and the girl from the horse.
Upon returning back to Phil they reported what they saw as well as what they found on the bodies. A small pendant revealing an artists rendition of the girl and her father was shown to Phil, and Phil recognized the man as being a merchant like him belonging to the same Merchant House in Pitax. He left a few days ago with a wagon of his own. He must have been ambushed by this same group of Brigands.
Phil asked the group if they were interested in finding their camp and trying to rescue the merchant and girl, or if the merchant was dead, rescue the girl and split the proceeds of the goods they find in the camp.
The group agreed to find these brigands.