Guardians of the Past

21st of Tarsakh 1365 Year of the Sword

The Circle of Valor sets out shortly after dawn. Nolia resumes the lead, checking the trail left by the riders they believe to be Baron Agwain and his men at arms. The tracks head southeast closer to the River Delimbiyr. The group can see mountains in the distance to the north. The trail starts getting steeper and Nolia assures her friends that they have gained an hour on their quarry when she checks the tracks at Highsun. In the late afternoon, the party is headed up a steep incline covered with large trees interspersed by exposed bedrock and boulders. Suddenly the party is suprised by a volley of arrow fire that rains down around Corthen and Nolia. A man rises up from cover behind some huge granite slabs and tells the adventurers to turn back and that the Baron and his lady wish to be left alone.

Corthen shouts back to the Baron and his men to surrender or they will pay for kidnapping a noblewoman. The response is a volley of arrows from the high ground. Tellazar and Saedellas decide to charge the archers and ride their warhorses into covered staked pits dug into the trail. The mage and feywarden are thrown from their injured mounts and crawl for cover from the flying arrows. The others dismount and charge up the hill on foot. The party engage six of Baron Agwain’s men in melee. They fight bravely and to the death, never asking for quarter. Nolia discovers horse tracks further up the trail and she informs the others that only half of the horses were carrying riders. Corthen realizes that the Baron has taken the horses of the men he left behind to speed his withdrawl back to Secomber. The men left behind have slowed the party up as he planned. The party is forced to heal themselves and free the horses and heal their injuries from the staked pits.

Corthen and Saedellas strongly urge the party to renew pursuit of the Baron. They say time is of the essence if they have hope of rescuing Kyrin Hawkwinter. The party rides hard for the next five hours up the hilly terrain. At twilight, Silvaris and Nolia hear faint shouts off in the overgrowth. The adventurers dismount and Nolia scouts ahead looking for signs of passage.

Nolia leads the party along a fresh trail, following a small group of booted prints left behind. The party draws bows and blades. The tracks lead Nolia into a half-open clearing where the Circle of Valor meet two battling parties in the overgrown ruins. Six armed guards dressed in blue and green livery with swords and crossbows have surrounded an exhausted looking man who has climbed up a broken pillar and is now trying to fend off their bolts.

Corthen demands to know what is going on and is told to turn around and leave if he wished to draw breath longer. The elven warrior’s reply is to draw steel and for them to try and make him leave. The six armed men move against the heroes and a bloody battle erupts between them. Once the last guard falls, Silvaris and Corthen approach the human who had been outnumbered. He thanks the party for saving him. He gives his name as Rehs Wrenwater, a toymaker. Corthen asks the toymaker why he was being hunted down by the men. Rehs admits that he had an encounter in Waterdeep with a wealthy man that ended badly. Erith examines the dead and remarks that their tunics carry a serpent heraldry that he thinks is either of the Noble House of Sultlue or Zun. The priests use their holy prayers to heal some of Reh’s and the party’s wounds the best they can. Nolia, Vilnullas, and Erith gather the horses and begin a fire for the night.

20th of Tarsakh 1365 Year of the Sword

Around daggerford

Uldred, Tellazar, and the others are awakened by Lord Hawkwinter’s men before the cock’s crow. Still half-asleep, they get dressed and stumble into the stable area where they are given a cup of ale and a chunk of bread. Corthen notices that other warriors and obvious mercenaries are here, too. Before he can ask any questions, Lord Hawkwinter walks in. The normally open and friendly lord is grimmer than the party has ever seen him.

“Good people,” he says, “I apologize for having roused you from your much-deserved rest, but I am facing a personal crisis, and I need your help. My daughter, Kyrin, seems to have been abducted by Baron Agwain, with whom we dined with last evening.” A murmur ripples through the assembled group. The heroes remember Baron Agwain coming to the inn two nights ago. Eremoes continues. “At this time I have no idea why the Baron did this, but I intend to ask him, persistently, until I get an answer I like. However, first I must get my hands on the good Baron, and that is where you all come in. I am offering 100 gold coins to every able warrior who aids in the search for my daughter.”

Lord Hawkwinter explains that Baron Agwain is a noble from the Secomber region. Lord Eremoes has consulted with the traveling priestess of Lathander and her divinations indicate that the Baron has fled for home with the Hawkwinter heir. Lord Hawkwinter says there are three routes he might have taken. The first route is the northernmost, along the Delimbiyr Route. This road seems the most likely, and Lord Hawkwinter and his personal guard will follow that path. The second route is directly north of the River Delimbiyr and south of the mountains. The third possibility is across the river and along its southern bank, a route leading into orc territory.

The gathered dwarves here under Tulmgar chime in that they know the Southern route and will gladly make some orc whelps orphans. The gathered hireswords agree to join with Tulmgar. Lord Hawkwinter turns to Corthen and asks, "Can I ask the Circle of Valor to take the second route north of the river? Corthen quickly confers with the others before giving Lord Eremoes Hawkwinter an affirmative reply. The party returns to their rooms to put on armor and gather weapons. They return to the stables to gather their mounts shortly after dawn.

The group rides south from the Roosting Griffon Inn along the road. In midafternoon, Nolia finds tracks off of the Tradeway in the mud that lead off to the east. She examines the horse prints and informs her comrades that she can count at least ten horses and the tracks are about seven hours old based on the drying mud. The party follows the female ranger as she keeps a watchful eye on the ground. Near dark the party stops and makes camp for the night so as to rest the horses to prevent injuring them by trying to ride them further today.

19th of Tarsakh 1365 Year of the Sword

The heroes battered by attacks by a band of darkblade killers as well as assault by the Cult of Gulkalath from the previous night spend much of the day in their rooms resting. Uldred and Saedellas ask their Gods for healing prayers to restore the health of everyone in the party. The priests cast all of their divine spells that they can.

Corthen speaks to Lord Hawkwinter and informs him that everyone should be healthy enough to travel at dawn the next day. A priestess of Lathander comes to the Inn before eveningfeast. Erith and Nolia speak to her and learn her name is Shadasha. She tells them she has heard a rumor that a wizard in Calimshan just created a new type of golem. Shadasha tells Nolia that she has been living in Amn but she is on her way to Waterdeep to join the Temple of Lathander there.

18th of Tarsakh 1365 Year of the Sword

A morning fog envelops the coast and the city this morning. The heavy mist breaks as the Circle of Valor reaches the Hawkwinter House. They see Hawkwinter guards standing outside the open gates of the villa. Torchlight and the sound of horses and men fill the courtyard as they broach the main gate. The party sees servants checking the pack animals, and placing the last barrels onto laden wagons.

Lord Hawkwinter is standing at the entry portico of the grand villa in conversation with his daughter, Kyrin as Vilnullas and the others come to a halt in an uncrowded portion of the cobblestone courtyard. Lord Eremoes and Kyrin exchange a few more brief words before coming out to the courtyard to greet the adventurers.

Lord Eremoes comes forward to shake hands with everyone and thank them for their coming. He says, “I am glad to see all of you this morn. I had prepared to lead this venture to speak to the Queen of the Elves myself, but unfortunately other worries in Daggerford and to the South need my direct attention. I shall accompany you on the first leg of your journey. I have turned the negotiations with the elves over to Kyrin. I would ask that you conduct this venture with her as if I were still present. I send her in my stead and would ask that each of you show her the respect that you have given me. She is my heir and will one day lead the Hawkwinter family and its businesses.”

Kyrin speaks, “Father, please!… I am fully grown and I can handle a trip without you. You have no need to worry.” She turns to face the group before she speaks again. “I know I can rely upon all of you. I only ask that when we reach the High Forest and you to speak to the Queen of Earlann please tell her of the fine quality of your horses and anything else she may ask of you. I only ask you speak truthfully and plainly, it should help prevent any embarrassing misunderstandings.”

The party agrees to follow Kyrin Hawkwinter to the High Forest. The nobles mount their fine horses along with eight Hawkwinter guards. Two wagons manned by teamsters ride with Kyrin and Eremoes. As the Hawkwinter caravan prepares to ride forth from the city via the South Gate before dawn, six gateguards stop the party. They demand that all male elves in the party dismount and submit to a search their person and their gear. Corthen asks they are being stopped. One of the armed men says that Magister Gilvren has given this order to the Watch and the Waterdeep Guard.

Erith dismounts and demands that the armed men search him as well. Kyrin and Uldred join him in his protest of the soldier’s search. Lord Hawkwinter grows angry but maintains his temper. “What has occurred that a Magister of the Lords would overstep and treat these elves like smugglers or baby snatchers?” he asks.

The guard answers, “A daring elven thief stole great wealth and magic from the Husteem noble family’s ship anchored in the middle of the harbor last night. A deck guard went after the elf but he swam off without surfacing in the harbor even once until he reached the docks. So the Magister has us looking for an elven male. Our orders are to stop and search any male elf’s person, packs, and gear for the stolen items.” The gate guards find nothing on the party and they apologize, saying they had to follow the orders of the Magister. They send the caravan on its way.

Four miles south of the city, the caravan comes to the area known as the Rat Hills. The stench from the huge mounds of refuse is overpowering causing the group to cover their noses to try and block the stench. As the riders pass the four mile long garbage dump the ground shakes once again spooking the pack animals and the draft horses.

Later in the day the Hawkwinter caravan comes to a stone bridge with a guard post of Waterdeep guardsmen. Erith tells his friends that legend has it that the bridge over the River Dessarin is a magical construct created by a powerful mage long ago. Lord Hawkwinter tells the group to stop and rest their mounts and to take a meal while he speaks with the guards. He returns and tells the adventurers that the reports from Daggerford are true. There is a poison in the river and it is killing livestock and vegetation.

It is dark when the riders reach the Roosting Griffin Inn. Everyone sees to their horses at the stables before entering the inn. The innkeeper is a female half elf named Reni Hild. They inquire about rooms and learn that private rooms are 3 gold a night. The heroes pay for rooms and wash before sitting down to the evening meal of lamb chops, cabbage, turnips, flatbread, and plum pudding. Their serving girl is about 15 and her name is Nyla.

A group of eleven tough and battle hardened dwarves come in and sit down at two tables.
Saedellas notices a man off to the side of the common room who seems to be sneaking glances at the party. He realizes it is Sniff, the thief whom the party drove out of Waterdeep. Silvaris goes to his table over to talk with him. He asks Sniff if he is following him and his friends. The nervous rogue tells Silvaris that he left Waterdeep and is just working and that he doesn’t want trouble.

On his way back to rejoin his friends, Silvaris hears one of the dwarves making a rude remark about elves. Silvaris loses his composure and insults the two tables of dwarves. Two of the dwarves stand up to face him. The half-elf innkeeper begins the casting of a spell, but she doesn’t have to complete it. Both Silvaris and the dwarves walk away from the potential brawl. Silvaris sends Dakara, another serving girl, over to the tables with a round of ale for the dwarves to help ease tensions.

The party, tired from a day of riding, beds down for the night. Nolia awakens with a hand clamped across her mouth and a short sword to her throat. The black cloaked figure whispers “Die, half-elf bitch!” Before she can react or silently say a prayer to the Gods, her assailant half turns, his sword biting into her shoulder as a black blade pierces up through his abdomen. The assassin tries to scream, but a gurgle of blood sprays forth from his lips splattering upon Nolia’s face and he collapses onto the bed and atop her. She sees the grinning gold mask of her savior and his garish fool’s attire as he grabs her enchanted Boots of Jumping, before the Jester rolls and tumbles out through the doorway and is gone.

Nolia screams. Silvaris, Saedallas, Tellazar, and Erith wake up to her loud shriek. There are assailants in the dark rooms with Saedallas and Tellazar. Saedellas is stabbed with a long sword by an assassin and Corthen wakes up when he is stabbed in the ribs by his attacker. Tellazar is luckier, he manages to dodge the attack of his hired killer. The wizard paralyzes his opponent with a Chromatic Orb and then he slits his assailant’s throat.

Uldred hears a commotion below and heads for the stairs. He sees an ugly baldheaded man armed with a trident leading 15 men into the inn downstairs. The man is yelling for the desecrators to come out. There are another five of his men lying dead at the feet of the dwarves along with five of the dwarves. The party manages to dispatch the darkblades that had come to assassinate them. Saedellas is badly wounded in his skirmish with his foe. Erith leads the others downstairs to aid the dwarves against the invaders in the dining room.

After a particularly bloody fight, the Circle of Valor prevails. The baldheaded priest lies dead along with most of his men but one of them manages to flee into the night. Three others throw down their weapons and beg for quarter. Corthen and Vilnullas gather the prisoners. Uldred speaks to the leader of the dwarves learning he is Tulmgar Hardaxe of the Stoneaxe Clan. The surviving dwarves are Eldmin, Dorok, Felm, Sargar, Ulvas and Yegarr. Nolia checks on the innkeeper and serving girls and finds them unharmed.

Twelve guards wearing the heraldic device of a white griffon holding three arrows on a green background and a noble from Secomber enter the Inn with the one man that escaped the fight. The noble’s name is Baron Agwain. The party takes the prisoners outside and question them. They say they were forced to attack the inn by Yorsag, a priest of Gulkalath. They claim he also forced them to worship Gulkalath with beatings, imprisonment, and death. The sailors tell Corthen that Yorsag brought them on a ship called the Black Tern in the hopes of avenging the defiling of Gulkalath’s shrine by the group. The party turns the prisoners loose and tell them to leave the area and not to return.

16th of Tarsakh 1365 Year of the Sword

The group spends much of the day in the Yawning Portal talking and having a few drinks. During their time socializing with some of the old men who come to the taproom two adventuring groups return from the depths of Undermountain. The first group to come up the well is called The Seven. They are an experienced band of humans led by a warrior named Pellen and the other group is called the Red Trolls. They are all human except for a half elf mage.

15th of Tarsakh 1365 Year of the Sword

A written message arrives from Lord Hawkwinter to be ready to leave the city on the 18th. He states he has moved up the trip because of the earthquake and his need to check some of his holdings during the trip.

Silvaris has tabards made for their horses. They are light blue with silver trim and a silver circle V, the standard of the party. Saedellas buys plate barding for his horse for 3,000 gold and everyone purchases leather barding for 150 gold. They group also purchases five small tents in preparation of the trip to the High Forest.

14th of Tarsakh 1365 Year of the Sword

Corthen travels to Neereena’s apartment near the Elfstone Tavern to check on her to make sure she is ok. She is all right and she is glad that he came to see her. Silvaris climbs to the top of a collapsed building near the City of the Dead to check for survivors. He finds the body of an eldery woman and starts digging it out when the rubble shifts and collapses on him. Saedellas climbs up and manages to rescue Silvaris from the stone and wood that had covered him. Together the two elves resume digging in the remains of the home and find another body. Saedellas cast Speak with Dead and finds out that the couple lived alone and they have passed on to the afterlife together.

In the morning Tellazar travels to the Watchful Order of Magists and Protectors to research a magical staff that the party recently found in Undermountain that he cannot identify. Gherzoth Felryth and Seronia Wands examine the staff and inform Tellazar that the staff was damaged by fire and whatever powers that were once contained in the wood no longer function despite it containing an aura of magic. Tellazar also inquires about what would cause the quake. He wonders if a poweful wizard has unleased an Earthquake spell on the city. Mhair Szeltune, the Lady Master of the Guild, assures him that it was almost certainly a natural event.

Corthen takes the group to the Hawkwinter Villa to check on Lord Hawkwinter and his family. Eremoes Hawkwinter thanks them for their concern and lets them know that they are unharmed.
Afterwards, the group gathers at Felzoun’s Folly for several rounds of ale.

During the night, there is another aftershock that hits the City of Splendors.

13th of Tarsakh 1365 Year of the Sword

There is an earthquake late at night and an aftershock. The party is unharmed but there is damage visible on the streets. A nearby shop in the North Ward has collapsed and there are individuals trapped from the partial collapse. Vilnullas and Uldred begin digging the people out. The rescued are all dwarves. They are Dervin Stonecarver and his two sons Dalhros and Fefren. They had been hired to make needed repairs to the structure a month ago. They were staying in the building when it crumbled in the earthquake. Dervin gives Vilnullas an amulet of his clan with a crossed pick and hammer over a mountain on it. He says if Vilnullas has need of help from a dwarf in the city he should display it and give his name. Corthen helps others in the North Ward. He rescues a man from a burning apartment above a bakery.

10th of Tarsakh 1365 Year of the Sword

Tellazar gathers all of the recent items that radiated magic and cast Identify spells on them.
Corthen goes to the Elfstone to visit his girlfriend. The party realizes they have a handful of magical elixirs and decides to find out what each can do. They carefully taste the potions to learn their properties.

Silvaris takes a polymorph potion and Corthen takes a potion of treasure finding. Uldred gets a staff of curing. The heroes split the remaining party treasure from the accumulated wealth they have gained from exploring Halaster’s Halls. Saedellas decides to buy some basic furnishings for his house in the South Ward. He spends 600 gold with furniture makers to stock his house with beds, tables, chairs, and cabinets.

9th of Tarsakh 1365 Year of the Sword

The group resumes adventuring in Undermountain after a night of rest. Searching near the Drow Temple they come to a room with a couple of chests and two hairy guards that the party believes may be gnolls. The group tries to talk with the duo, but no one speaks their tongue. One of furry creatures reaches for a set of keys at his neck and throws them to Silvaris. They both slowly slide along the side wall to another passage out of the room where they exit the room leaving the party to the chests. Silvaris checks the strongboxes and detects no traps. He opens them both to find a nice haul of silver and gold coins.

The Circle of Valor travels a passage until the come to an old rusted, but massive porticullis. Someone has bent the bars enough to allow passage through the gate. The party cautiously goes through the gate. Corthen searches the area nearby and finds a secret door. Behind the door is a rancid odor. In the far corner is a woman shackled to the wall. She screams. Corthen tells her to be at ease that they will help her. She begins to cry hysterically. Corthen tries his best to persuade her that they mean no harm. Her name is Aideneth. She came from Baldurs Gate with a merchant just a month ago. She tells Corthen she was taken from a party held at a nobleman’s villa by two ugly smelly men about two days ago.

Vilnullas’ sword, the Flame of the North silently tells him, “Strike, strike, strike.” This creates some controversy as some of the party feel that the woman is no threat and deserves to be freed from this hideous cell, while others err on the side of caution and do not wish to free someone who may be more than she appears. Corthen convinces the group to free her despite the warnings of the sword. He gives her some money to pay Durnan as well buy herself some food and lodging in the city above. Corthen gives her directions to the well chamber and they send her on her way.

After Aideneth leaves the cell, the party moves down a nearby passage and see an old woman’s ghost. Corthen is fairly confident that the ghost is what was triggering the sword’s reaction and not the young woman. Down a hall are two doors; one on either side of the hall. Both are covered in black runes that are hard to read and comprehend. The heroes get the doors open and go inside. All of the spell casters forgot a spell they have prepared for the day due to some magic of the door. There is a charred corpse holding a spell book and a charred staff in the room. Saedellas grabs the staff and book and then they head across the hall to the other room.

This room is bare except for some dark cloth. As the party enters, a bright glowing pink bat starts circling Corthen. He immediately attacks the bat killing it with his swords. Tellazar studies the bat and informs him that slew a harmless bat with faerie fire illuminating it.
Silvaris finds a stone door painted black that is already open. Corthen enters the darkness and is teleported away. His comrades follow suit hoping for the best.

The group arrives in a corridor that opens into a massive chamber with a sarcophagus. The sarcophagus has a knight and sword carves into the lid. The knight’s sword bears engravings. Vilnullas, Corthen, Nolia, and Uldred push the lid off and see a skeleton with a glowing scimitar. The scimitar disappears and is replaced by six flying knives which attack the members of the party. One of the knives strikes Vilnullas and his mermaid engraved plate armor which rusts from the dagger’s magic and the rusty bits falls off him. The heroes destroy all of the remaining knives and the sarcophagus lid splits apart and a skeleton with fiery eyes and translucent armor emerges wielding a scimitar. The adventuring band sends this creature back to the grave. The group scours the room for treasures making sure to grab the scimitar they just battled for. The party returns to he Yawning Portal. There they ask about Aideneth and learn she paid her exit fee and quickly left the inn. Vilnullas goes to the armorer and buys another suit of armor.


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