Guardians of the Past

15th of Flamerule 1365 Year of the Sword

After spending two months improving their adventuring and martial skills the newly reminted Guardians of the Past gather at the Yawning Portal in Waterdeep. The group now consists of Corthen Nightglade, moon elf warrior; Tellazar Hemzall, human mage; Erith Talvera, human bard; Nolia Fallas, half-elven ranger; Vilnullas Whitewood, moon elf warrior; Uldred Watchever, dwarven priest of Gorm; Rehs Wrenwinter, human rogue; and the recent addition Samira Asiya Bashirah, Calishite priestess of Mystra. Samira was recruited by the party during the last month of training.

The party descends the well into Undermountain. Corthen desires to push further west on the first level. The group travels familiar halls until the reach several unexplored passages. The heroes discover a room filled with much purple fungus. Corthen searches the area as much as possible but nothing is uncovered during his investigation. Rehs opens a nearby portal and discovers a privy room. At another stone door, Rehs the rogue hears someone talking behind the door. The door is locked and he fails to pick open the door lock. The group chooses to move on past the door since they were not able to open the door stealthily.

At the next archway, Nolia hears the splash and gurgling of water echoing down the dark hallway. The group moves through the hall carefully until they reach the source. A large stone fountain of blue and white veined marble dominates the room. An exquisite nude female made of pure white marble stands atop the fountain’s plinth. She cradles a jar in her arms with water spilling from the jar into the fountain’s pool below. The pool is 15’ across at the base and the water in the pool appears to be 2’ deep.

Fountain

Rehs checks the fountain for hidden traps and finds none. Corthen steps up and tastes he water; he finds it to be cold and pure. After a moment the elven treasure hunter feels different. His mind is clearer and more focused than it had been previously. Realizing that the waters may be enchanted, he informs the others. Tellazar finds that the water does radiate magical energy. The group all decide to risk tasting the waters. Everyone enjoys the benefit of mental clarity that comes from the fountain’s waters. Someone decides to refer to the room as the “Fountain of Thoughtfulness”.

The adventurers leave the fountain and travel down another nearby passage. They enter a 80’ by 90’ chamber. Its arched ceiling rises to 60’ above the stone floor. The whole room reeks of sweat and other worse odors. A large stone table and benches sit in the center of the room. The table is crusted dried food and bits of loose debris. The floor around the south and east wall is covered with heaps of old carpet, ratty furs, and old hay. Rising from the carpets are a few large creatures. Most are green-skinned, with lanky limbs and have a seriously bad attitude. One of the other creatures is wearing hides and had two heads. He yells something before they attack. The Guardians of the Past fight together using blades and spells to vanquish the occupants of the room. Corthen uses his flametongue to dispatch the troll corpses. The party scoops up the loose coins and jewelry of the creatures and leaves by climbing a short flight of stairs up.

Traveling down a long hall the party discovers a partially open door. Beyond is a 30’ by 40’ room with a high 50’ ceiling appears to have served as a meeting hall. The room’s dominating feature is a rotting long table surrounded by 16 wooden chairs. Tatters of mildewed fabric still cling to the West wall. What the tapestry once represented the heroes cannot make out.
Surrounding the table on the wooden floor are seven bodies of an elf and six humans, some are old men but all have died violently.

Suddenly the rogue shakes violently and screams. Failing in its attempt to possess Rehs a semitranslucent figure appears and tries to grab members of the group. The party uses its spells to fight the ghost and defeat it. Tellazar, Samira, Corthen and Erith find that the encounter with the undead spirit has unnaturally aged them by a decade.

The party searches the corpses and discovers that they know the deceased adventurers sprawled across the floor. They have seen them in the Yawning Portal in the past months. Vilnullas says they called themselves the Finders of Luck. Corthen says that their luck seems to have run out. The group decides to remove the dead men and woman from the dungeon. The heroes carry the bodies to the entry well and give gold to Adama of Tymora for their burials in the City of the Dead. Uldred notices that several of the regulars of the taproom take notice of the group’s compassion for the dead. Several of them give him a silent nod of respect for their kindness. The group returns to the depths.

Traveling back the passages south of the recent ghost encounter that group finds a door with a skull and crossbones painted on its surface. Rehs carefully inspects the door and several offcolor flagstones in front of the door before he picks the lock. Corthen slowly pulls the stone door open and leads the way for swords bared. The party finds a straw matress and a wooden stool in the otherwise empty room. Rehs and Vilnullas search the area and Rehs finds a folded piece of parchment. He unfolds it. On it he discovers a list with the names and descriptions of each current member of the group except for Samira!

After some debate and some fearful speculation the group agrees to put the list back and secure the door again. Not knowing who created the list or its purpose weighs heavily on several members of the group. They all agree to keep adventuring for the time being. Opening another chamber nearby the party finds that someone has scrawled messages in white paint upon the South wall. They read “Disturb not the dead, for they sleep lightly.” “Woe upon the foolish who would try to descend into Halaster’s Halls. Although he is gone, his works remain to slay even the greatest of mortals.” and “Yanar found the lair of the Loathbeast.”

During a search of a nearby passage Corthen finds a secret door. Nolia discovers the trigger and opens the hidden way. Corthen and Vilnullas lead the adventurers through into an impressive chamber that is 50’ high in the center. Slender pillars of dark marble line the entryway into this vast chamber. Ruby red carpet covers much of the dark tiled floor.

Traveling further into the hall, the heroes see immense relief carvings on the wall of semi-nude and nude women, men, and elves of both sexes embracing in many acts of passion. An oval pool of clear water 3’ deep and 30’ in diameter fills much of the floor between the walls of the carved lovers. On the far side of the pool, lies another carpeted area, this is covered with dozens of large black silk pillows. Erith jokes that they have found the cellars to Corthen’s villa. The elven warrior shoots a dark look at his friends for laughing since he still is upset about the imposter who turned his home into a pleasure palace during his absence while adventuring for Lord Hawkwinter.

Beyond the hall of many pillows, are four large 30’ tall pillars of smooth white marble with veins of gold throughout their surface. Atop each pillar is a large winged lion of immense size made of bronze. They stare down at the group with unseeing eyes. The area beyond the lions appears to be the temple proper. Here in this chamber of polished black stone, a 30’ tall, cat-headed woman surveys the chamber from her raised platform against the back wall. A 20’ long, 6’ wide, and 4’ high altar of shiny black marble stands 10’ in front of the scantily clad cat-headed statue. The group carefully approaches the black marble altar.

The black marble altar has several items upon it. On the left side of the altar, a golden incense burner and a golden chalice with dancing nude women and studded with amethysts sits. Soft white silk bedding occupies the center of the altar stone.The right side of the altar holds a small golden chest with the raised relief of a cat’s head with hooped earrings. Corthen begins appraising the treasure sitting atop the black stone surface. Samira and Uldred try to examine the items to identify what deity this temple may be consecrated to. Samira shares that a cat-headed deity named Bast is worshipped in lands to the East. Erith says that the only goddesses that he knows of that might have been worshipped here are Sune, Goddess of Love or Sharess, Goddess of Lust. Corthen gathers up the temple items and secures them in his pack.

When the party begins to exit the temple proper they find that the bronzed winged lions are now moving and watching the group and look ready to pounce down on them like they are a drove of sheep. Corthen quickly runs back to the altar and puts the goddesses’ items back with haste. Once he returns the golden items from the black marble altar the bronze guardians revert to immovable statues again. As they make their way out of the Cat Goddess’ temple, Corthen says no one else in the party has the stones to search the pool besides him. Erith laughs before removing his clothes and gear and entering the pool nude. After joking for several minutes, the pool is found to be empty of any hidden treasures or secret portals.

A search of a side chamber reveals a large statue of a human male with an upheld sword. An oval cut sparkling gemstone amulet is part of the warrior statue. The party is reluctant to awaken magic that may be part of the bald headed carved warrior. The group decides to leave the hidden temple area and make camp back at the fountain chamber they had discovered earlier in the day.

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