|Important Items in this Area|
Only one more bit of exploration to do before it's time to finally go pay the Nilfgaardians a visit. Return to White Orchard village and do what business you need to do, then follow the large road through White Orchard village, heading west (and slightly south). Pass the Notice Board, the remains of Willis' shop, and past Odolan's house to the north. It should be pretty easy to stay on the main road and avoid any detours onto side-roads. Keep going south-west until you spot another house north of the road, wherein you can score some treasure.
Get back on the larger road heading south-west and continue to follow it in that direction into you spot a small trail veering off in a more radical south-western direction, which ends near a ruined house. Inside are two bodies for you to loot. Do so, then return to the larger road again. Carry on until you spot a Nilfgaardian camp south of the road, although this one is tastefully not adorned with hanged corpse decorations. There are more items to loot here, but again, you'll have to be careful not to let the guard see you. They're more vigilant here, so you might not be able to get everything.
Note: In between this camp and the "Broken Bridge" signpost you might encounter Nekkers, weak little burrowing critters that tend to hunt in packs. Use fast attacks to deal with them.
Abandoned Site (level 2)
When you're done looting, return to the road again. This time the goal is to follow one of two other large roads to the north that connect to the one you were on... and with each other, forming a triangle on your map. These roads, once joined, lead north to the "Sawmill" signpost. West of this signpost is another Abandoned Site currently occupied by a quartet of Ghouls. Kill them and some villagers will move in to the area, even being so kind as to set up a Grindstone for you to use.
Loot the newly-inhabited houses and the nearby stable. There are even a few beehives around. The bees will sting you if you get too close, of course, and they can do a fair bit of damage (again, piling on the absurdity). Use Igni on the hive to kill the bees and cause the hive to fall to the ground, which you can loot for Honeycomb. Don't sell any of this yet, as the herbalist - when you can finally talk to her - will give you a pretty penny for them. Last and not least, a new merchant will show up here sooner or later. He doesn't sell anything earth-shatteringly good, but it's another place you can drop off excess loot for some much-needed Crowns.
|For slaying the Ghouls and liberating the Abandoned Site||90 XP|
Bandit Camp (level 2)
From the formerly-Abandoned Site head north through the wilderness, perhaps stopping to hunt game and fight off some Wolves. Eventually you'll find a Bandit Camp, occupied by the same weak collection of bandits that you should be used to by now; an archer, two swordsmen, and an axe-weilder. Defeat them, then search around their camp for goodies, most of which is located around the tent. The best loot can be found in a parcel behind the tent and in a chest beside a cot.
Guarded Treasure (level 4)
To the north is a swamp, where you'll likely face the old hazard of Drowners, and a new hazard: explosive swamp gas. The latter can be used, in conjunction with the Igni Sign, to help deal with the former, if you're sneaky like that. Just be wary, as swamp gas is every bit as poisonous as it is combustible. North-west of the Bandit Camp you'll find some Guarded Treasure, constituting a dead soldier, his horse, and a treasure chest lying in the muck. Dispatch any Drowners guarding it and get to looting.
Note: Stay out of the swamp at night, as it'll be crawling with Drowners. Unless you want to fight a bunch of Drowners, of course. In which case... head into the swamp at night! They're some of the few critters that give experience worth mentioning, and it's really the only way to grind at this point in time. You may also find Water Hags in the swamp. They're rare, but not terribly difficult to kill.
Travel east through the swamp and, eventually, you should come to a road running more or less north-south. Follow it south and out of the swamp until you hear somebody calling for you east of the road. Head over there to find a merchant sitting by a campfire. Ask him what's wrong and he'll vaguely babble about some monsters in the swamp. Geralt, annoyed, sets him straight and the merchant will tell a slightly more coherent story. Apparently his horse was devoured by some sight-unseen swamp monster, and he wants a kindly Witcher to go find his goods... or at least a "little box" that seems to be particularly important to him. Agree to help him, then... well, head back north into the swamp (after tracking the quest in your journal of course).
The site of the attack is only a short ways to the north, just follow the road and keep your Witcher Senses up. You should spot some cart tracks running off the road and into the swamp. Investigate them, loot a nearby sack, then veer north-west into the swamp. Near the center of the new search area, just west of a sunken brick building, you'll find the wagon, the dead horse, and the cargo. Check the horse and the cart to observe that they've been shot with arrows - a weapon which not too many monsters use - then loot the cart. Continue looking around with your Witcher Senses to spot a body to the east, also the victim of arrow fire. Geralt comes to the only logical conclusion, and it doesn't make him a happy Witcher. The box you're looking for is just north-east of the wreckage, pick up the "Locked Strongbox" and return to the "merchant".
You can simply give the faker his box back, which ends the quest, but it's more interesting to chase him down and find out what all the lies (not to mention the arrows) were about. Take him to task for lying and he'll pull the old "look out behind you!" gag. Sadly, he doesn't realize that a Witcher's senses are too acute for that nonsense. Instead of coming clean, however, he rides off.
|For returning the box||25 XP / 20 Crowns|
Mount Roach, who will have appeared nearby, and chase the liar south along the road. Roach is faster than his horse, so you shouldn't have any trouble catching him. Once you do, swat him with your sword to dismount him. After he recovers he'll spill the beans about who he is, why he attacked the cart, and what is in that little box you recovered for him. After this you'll have three choices; turn him into the Nilfgaardians, let him go help the rebels, or free him, but keep the medicine. It's a good time to take a stance on the issue... A Witcher is supposed to remain neutral, and it's not really your job to round up criminals, nor help rebellions. Geralt is a Nordling himself, however, and it's hard to see how keeping the medicine will help anybody.
|For turning the rebel into the Nilgaardians||10 XP / 30 Crowns|
|For letting the rebel take the medicine||10 XP / 30 Crowns|
|For keeping the medicine||10 XP / 50 Crowns / Celandine x5|
Place of Power (level 6)
You're now south of the Sawmill signpost, and all the fun stuff you have left to do is back north. So... hoof it back north (figuratively or literally, your call). Your next destination is between the two roads that run north-south through the swamp, east of the Bandit Camp you cleared out earlier. It's worth exploring the lightly forested hills between the two roads, however, as they contain herbs to harvest, Wolves and Wargs to kill, and beehives to burn.
The place of interest here, however, is the Place of Power whose location was previously disclosed. It's guarded by a Wraith (level 6), but since you've defeated a stronger Wraith earlier this should be no trouble. You might want to consider saving before you fight it, as it has a chance to drop Emerald Dust. Getting a dose of this will allow you to upgrade one of your swords (preferably the Silver Sword) and save you 500 or so Crowns in the process. In any event, draw from the Place of Power once you've vanquished the Wraith.
Guarded Treasure (level 5)
Head over to the eastern of the two roads that run up through the swamp and... well, run up through the swamp. Along this eastern road you'll find a "Guarded Treasure" event. You know the drill,several Drowners - or perhaps some Wolves... - are guarding some treasure. Kill them and take what's yours.
Spoils of War
Continue north-west along the road until you head under a brick arch. After the arch veer off to the north-east and go for a swim to the east to find the "Spoils of War" event. Near a wrecked half of a boat that's somehow still floating take a dive to find some treasure near the other, less floaty half of the boat.