Guardians of the Past

14th of Marpenoth 1366 Year of the Staff
How to Survive in the Port of Shadows

The Guardians of the Past invite the Huntresses to Corthen’s home in the North Ward. The group led by Corthen is eager to learn about Skullport. Zorneeda and Terleeza share that they have been to the port twice. Zorneeda explains that once their band was teleported to the the third level and they wandered through monster lair after lair until finally stumbling into the confines the pirate port. Terleeza says that they returned on ship a year later to retrieve an item stolen from a noble villa . Terleeza shares they were able to buy the item back from the fence in Skullport.

Corthen asks what Skullport is like. Zorneeda shares that it a crowded huge cavern containing a mixture of stone, and salvaged wood buildings some built on top of another. The female mage continues. She says that Skullport is neutral territory. All races and all creatures are welcome in Skullport as long as there is no bloodshed. Anyone caught disrupting the trade here with face the power of the Skulls.

Intrigued, Tellazar asks the Huntresses about the Skulls. Parthia speaks up and says that skulls are some ancient human skulls that when provoked come swarming offenders and blasting them with powerful magic. She says that one must not stir up trouble, lest they be blasted to dust by the power of the floating skulls. Zorneeda says that slavery, poison, and all other kinds of illegal activity are legal in Skullport.

Corthen asks if it is safe to sleep anywhere in Skullport. Flaseen speaks and says that the Burning Troll Inn is a good place, run by retired adventurers. The heroes run out of questions, so some of them decide to make a trip to the Riven Shield. Ayremyr is eager to see if Delborggan has any new magical weapons for sale. The elf is disappointed. The merchant states that a group keeps coming in and buying everything when it comes in. Intrigued, Corthen asks about the men. Delborggan says that he has no names, but two of the men have Moonshavian accents. Corthen thanks the owner and the group returns to the North Ward and waits for their trip to Skullport.

13th of Marpenoth 1366 Year of the Staff

The party armed with the information from Saedellas, returns to Undermountain. Traveling towards the area of the spider temple, the group comes across a dead drow elf. Samira speaks with the dead drow and learns that Eclavdra is based in Halaster’s Halls. She also learns that the temple of Lolth is located somewhere below the first level of the dungeon. Seeking a way to descend, the group uses a descending stairwell not far from the entry well to the Yawning Portal.

As Corthen and Ayremyr move down the steps, flames erupt in the stairwell. A flaming guardian is gated in and attacks the elven warriors. During the battle, Ayremyr Windywood is knocked down the flight of stairs and disappears. Corthen, Rehs, Tellazar, Erith and the others battle the Salamander with blades and spells. Erith uses his wand to hit the creature with magical cold. The heroes defeat the fire creature and complete their descent. The group finds that they are teleported when they reach the last few steps below.

The group finds themselves in a wide hall and they have found their missing comrade, Ayremyr. The bruised warrior is shaking off his plummet and tumble down the steep stairs. Looking about, the elf discovers that his magical scimitar that he lost a grip on is missing. It appears that when he tumbled through the teleport set on the stairs that his blade went through on its own, but did not travel to the same destination. Samira looks to the wounded elf before the party decides on a direction after Rehs does some scouting ahead.

The group travels through a myriad of hallways, seeking another set of stairs down. The party discovers a lost journal belonging to an adventurer of the halls. Tellazar peruses the book and finds little information of value. Pushing on, the party moves through many long and twisting passages of the dungeon before turning a corner and coming face to face with a tall male humanoid wearing ornate armor with glowing pupiless eyes!

Corthen cautiously holds his attack, waiting to see if the powerful looking figure acts hostile towards the group. The tall figure moves forward but moves past the group as if they are not even present. Rehs and Ayremyr mutter thanks to their gods that the creature ignored them and did not attack. Gathering their composure, the Guardians of the Past travel through several intersections and down a hall into chamber with black stone flagstones and a black arched ceiling. As Corthen slowly moves into the chamber a whispered voice calls out in elven. “Corthen.” The soft female voice calls again. Corthen Nightglade responds to the voice without a form, “Who calls?”

The elven voice calls, “A friend. Olaie of the Huntresses. I shall show myself, so hold arms.” The lithe form of the elven woman appears out of the shadows of the far side of the chamber. She sheathes a slim blade and slowly walks out into the light carried by the group. Corthen recognizes the female adventurer from the Elfstone Tavern and from the Yawning Portal. The Guardians greet Olaie. Corthen asks if this is a deeper level of Undermountain. The elven rogue confirms that they are on the second level, known to adventurers as the “Storeroom Level”. Ayremyr shares the story of guarded stairs and losing his scimitar when he fell through the teleport. He asks Olaie if she has any idea where it may have been transported to. Olaie says that teleports and gates sometimes have special magic that whisks away other objects. She says the missing blade could be about anywhere. Corthen asks Olaie if she knows anything about a Lolth Temple in Undermountain. Olaie shares that she knows nothing of a temple, but she knows Drow are known to be more frequent on below the “Storeroom Level”.

From the far archway, several armed females step forward. Seeing Olaie speaking to the party, they cautiously approach. The heroes meet the other members of the Huntresses; Terleeza, Zorneeda, Gerta, Warenia, Thalia, Flaseen, Ruma, Parthia, and Irum. The women are told that the party is seeking out the Drow to recover a missing staff taking from the druids of the Moonshaes. Corthen asks the Huntresses if they can aid them in their search. Zorneeda and her band discuss amongst themselves his request and offer to give the Guardians of the Past assistance for an equal share of treasure for the mission. The Guardians discuss the matter and agree to their terms.

Corthen asks if they can lead them to the stairs to next level below since that is known to hold Drow. Flaseen speaks up. A priestess in the vestments of Selune, Flaseen recommends that the group sail to Skullport instead of trying to use stairs to descend and wander through endless danger. Tellazar asks why they would sail to the mythical pirate port when they wish to find the Drow who have been terroring the Moonshaes. Terleeza pipes in and states emphatically that Skullport is a real place and that lies in caverns in Undermountain.

Flaseen says that shady ship captains know the secret route that connects the sea to Skullport. She says that the River Sargauth winds through that level of the dungeon and it is a quicker way to travel through the level. Terleeza says that rogues and traders in Skullport may have information about the Drow and she suggests the group leave the depths and seek out passage to Skullport to complete the quest.

The two groups agree to return to Waterdeep so that they can provision properly for a trip deep into Undermountain. Erith uses his horned ring to carry every adventurer one by one to the surface. The two bands split up, some to gather extra gear and food, while others seek out a ship captain willing to take them down to Skullport. Rehs, Corthen, and Erith walk to the Dock Ward. Rehs tries to use his thieves cant at one Dock Ward tavern and the barman looks at him strangely like he has three heads. The rogue next goes to a downtrodden tavern with a Serpent signboard. Inside the dimly lit taproom the thief strikes a conversation with the owner. Rehs slips the pale man some gold to learn of transport to Skullport. He is told to seek out the owner at Kilmen’s Foamy Jack.

Rejoining Corthen and Erith the trio avoid the narrow alleys and make for Slut Street. There they are joined by Terleeza. Kilmen’s front door is an ornate wood door that has been salvaged an age ago possibly from a shipwreck. Terleeza and Rehs go up to the old woman tending the bar. Rehs tells the gray haired woman they are looking for a ship for passage and that they were told to come to the Jack. The woman tells him that she knows many ships crews. Rehs finally catches on that he must pay her for her help. Once coins have crossed her palm, she tosses a coin to one of her regulars at the bar and tells him to get Captain Gigardos.

While they are waiting a brawny sailor enters and sits in a corner booth. He orders food and drink from the serving wench. Once he has been served, the old matron informs Rehs that the sailor in the corner is the man he seeks. Rehs crosses the floor and asks if he may join the sailor. The dark haired captain motions to the other bench. Rehs informs Gigardos that he and his friends seek passage on a ship. He reveals that the destination is Skullport. Captain Gigardos lets Rehs know that the cost is high, since the trip is not easy. He agrees to carry the two parties and their gear for 750 gold coins per passenger. He also requires that everyone remain in the hold during the entire trip with weapons sheathed. Gigardos demands half of the payment and Rehs returns after Corthen gives him a sack of gold and gems.

Gigardos informs the rogue to meet the Sea Maiden at the harbor on the 16th at 11 bells. He warns that if anyone is the late, the ship will set sail without them. Rehs thanks the shady shipmaster and leaves with his friends. Ayremyr finishes up purchases of food and canoes for passage on the Sargauth.

12th of Marpenoth 1366 Year of the Staff

The Guardians of the Past have spent the last two days healing and making an attempt to speak to the spirit of the dead Fire Giant killed in the their last battle. Samira tried but was unable to get him to communicate.

The group is gathered at Corthen’s manse for morningfeast, when there is a knock at the door. Corthen’s servant, Bared, informs him that he has a guest. Corthen walks to the foyer and sees a familiar face, his friend Saedellas Nightstar. The two elves greet one another and soon the entire party comes in to rejoice about his return to Waterdeep.

Corthen inquires as to his visit. Saedellas shares that he had completed his tour at Sunset Keep and he had desired to visit old friends once again in the City of Splendors. He states that when he arrived, he immediately discovered that his home in the South Ward was gone, destroyed by some unknown force. He says he looked around and could not find his friends, so he went into Undermountain seeking them out.

The elven priest goes on to relate while there he encountered a mixed band of haughty elves , half elves and halflings. He traveled with them for awhile for mutual benefit. Saedellas became concerned about their motives when each encounter with humans either nearly ended in violence or it did result in death. Saedellas was shocked when the group entered a chamber and basically executed a lone human in leathers. Saedellas goes on that he and one of the friendly halflings were able to remove the human and take him back to the city in and to the temple of his faith.

Corthen relates to the priest that his home was destroyed by creatures in the service of an unknown spellcaster, bent on pillaging their gathered magic. He then regales his friend with their recent exploits in the Moonshaes and against the giants. Saedellas then shares that while he and the evil elves were exploring Undermountain that they were able to spy a large number of drow and Fire Giants travel through several chambers before making a human sacrifice at the drow temple and opening a gate and traveling through it. Corthen is in shock! He comes to the realization that the drow who are allied with the Dark Druidess are the same drow also plaguing Undermountain.

The group moves into action. Samira takes out the Spear of Lochal and attempts to commune with the dead Fire Giant in drow tongue. She first asks, “how can we meet Eclavdra?” He responds, “One comes when one is summoned.” She asks, “Where do you get summoned to?” The giant answers, “To the spider temple.” Samira continues, “Where is this temple?” His repsonse is, “Near the river.”

Samira continues and inquires as to the name of the river. “The River Sargauth.” The priestess of Mystra asks, “Where is this river?” The Fire Giant answers. He tells her that it is underground in the caverns. Samira asks if the caverns he speaks of have a name. The giant says, “The elves call it Zaress Zauvazzah.” Samira translates the name to Dark Victory. She asks, “how does one reach the spider temple from Waterdeep?” “I don’t know”, he retorts. She asks, “how would one get there from the ice caverns of the Frost Giant Jarl.”
His response is through the gateway. Samira asks him about the full path all the way to the ice caverns. The Fire Giant answers, "it is six days travel across the glacier from the Jarl’s caverns to the cavern where the gateway is located. Traveling through the gateway, there are 15 days of travel to the 2nd gate. This leads to the drow temple area. Samira asks if Eclavdra has the druidic staff. The giant doesn’t know.

Erith informs the party that the River Sarguath is said to wind through deeper levels of Undermountain. The group discusses plans of action. Saedellas asks if Samira can help the human that the elven adventurers murdered. He shares he thinks he was a druid. The group discusses this and grants access to the rod of resurrection. Saedellas travels to the temple where the druid has been taken to. He uses the rod, and the man is made whole.

Saedellas apologizes to the human before anyone else speaks. He shares that he was not friends with the evil natured elves who killed him in Undermountain. The human speaks and accepts the elven priest’s story. He shares that his name is Gareth Wildwolf, a Guardian of the Neverwinter Wood. Saedellas asks him some questions and learns he is a ranger, not a druid and that he was teleported into some horrid maze. He shares that he had discovered several sets of stairs and kept moving up searching for an exit. Talking, the two discover that Gareth had survived from the deeper levels of Undermountain for 7 months.

Corthen is happy and wishes to celebrate Saedellas’ return in the grand style of “the false Corthen Nightglade”. He talks his friends into joining him at Mother Tathlorn’s House of Pleasure and Healing. Putting on their finery the group travels to Gem Street in the Castle Ward. Corthen is greeted by the staff as if they know him. Everyone realizes this is from the person who was able to impersonate Corthen for some time in the city before he uncovered the activity.

Parrin, one of the staff, introduces the party to a number of attractive hosts. The ladies, Vie, a human with flame red hair; Doryne, an attractive half-elf wearing a faerie costume; Shelog, a sea elf; Silvanna, a moon elf beauty with silver hair; Sunny, a tall blonde with green eyes; Berry, a lithe brunette; and Esta, an attractive blonde with dark eyes.

The group parties. They drink, dance, and gamble. Before long, some of the party departs the lounge. Erith departs first with Silvanna. Corthen tries to get Tellazar to find a companion to comfort him, but the mage refuses to do more than eat and sip some wine. Saedellas seeks the company of Vie. Rehs giggles as Doryne whispers to him. He soon departs up the stairs with her. Ayremyr leaves with Sunny. Rithil and Berry leave. Corthen says goodbye to Samira, Kiersan, and Tellazar and he wobbles upstairs with Esta and Shelog. Corthen spends 115 gold coins for drinks for the entire group. The pleasure lasses cost 490 gold for the night. Corthen is generous and tips each lass 100 gold coins for their time.

9th of Marpenoth 1366 Year of the Staff
A Bard's Tale

The group decides to try and negotiate with the Frost Giant leader. The plan is they will leave the giants alone if they agree to turn over the Staff of Chauntea that was taken from the grove in the Moonshaes.

The heroes use the mirror to open the magic gate into the lower level of the giants’ stronghold. Samira speaks a Tongues prayer and calls out for a parley in the giant language. The Frost Giants respond. Samira learns their leader is the Jarl. He demands that the group drop weapons if they wish to parley with him. Corthen and the others refuse to disarm, so the giants respond by attacking the party. The group kills one of the aggressors and hastily retreats from the Jarl’s icy lair. Samira casts several healings over the injured members of the group.

Kiersan suggests that the group search the unexplored areas of the Jarl’s lair for the staff and avoid the mass of giant’s at the throne room. The group agrees, and returns back through the mirror to the upper level carved in the ice. The group’s next encounter is with Fire Giants. there is a fierce battle with the three male giants, one of them swings his huge sword and his blade kills Erith with one blow. Ayremyr, Rehs, and the others hack at the legs and torsos of the dark skinned giants. Tellazar casts several spells and the group manages to defeat these three hulking foes. Rehs and Ayremyr remove one giant’s head, so they may question him through magic. The group retreats back to Waterdeep with the bard’s corpse. Once back in the city, Samira uses the staff to bring Erith back from the dead.

8th of Marpenoth 1366 Year of the Staff

The heroes stay in Waterdeep. They take turns scrying the Frost Giants. Rehs keeps an eye on the throne room since he was the only member of the party to have seen the room. He watches as the giants who seem to have gathered in that room for protection. The party cannot take on such a large number of foes and survive, so they just keep an eye on their enemies and hope that they disperse.

7th of Marpenoth 1366 Year of the Staff
The Battle of Big Big Horn

In the morning, the Guardians of the Past, don their armor and take up their arms. They proceed back to the Frost Giant fortress by way of the magic mirror. The group travels down a long hallway before Corthen steps on a tripwire which releases boulders down upon the front ranks of the party. Corthen manages to avoid being hit, but Rithil, Kiersan, and Ayremyr are struck and wounded.

After recovering and the binding wounds on the injured members, the group finds a sloping passage that descends down deeper into the frozen ice. They find themselves in a large stone cavern with impressive carvings showing Frost Giants battling dragons and all manner of creatures including humans.

Corthen, Rehs, Rithil, and Ayremyr search for and discover a hidden passage behind a huge boulder. Unable to move the massive stone, Erith uses his scroll of portals and creates a passage through the impediment. Passing through, Corthen and the other warriors discover a guard room with several watchful giants who use a huge horn that hangs suspended from the ceiling by chains. Fearing that they will surrounded and be outnumbered the group quickly retreats from the room and runs back to the chamber containing the unseen portal that allows them to pass back through the mirror.

Tellazar and his companions scry the giants at the watch horn. They watch the number of giants who go through the room searching for them but return an hour later empty handed. Samira, Tellazar, and Corthen plot an attack that will allow them to surprise the Frost Giants at the horn.

Several hours later, Tellazar scries the chamber again and the see that the giants are on watch keeping an eye on the boulder they use as a door. Tellazar creates a gate behind the giants and the party steps through. A silence spell on Corthen helps to negate the horn. The party attacks the two giants in the chamber and make short work of them. While the silence is still in effect, the group destroys the horn using spells.

Rehs scouts the cavern tunnel out of the chamber. His invisibility keeps him from being seen. He hides along the edge of the next chamber and observes that it must be the throne room of the Frost Giant ruler. He sees that the room is crowded. He counts 16 female giants, 4 ogres, and 21 male giants. Rehs retreats and shares what he had discovered.

Knowing that they cannot fight that many giants, the group decides to leave. Samira pins a note to one of th giant corpses. It reads, “Give us the staff with leaves that Eclavdra the drow took from the Druid’s grove.” The party steps back through the mirror and spend the night in Waterdeep, away from the wrath of the giants.

6th of Marpenoth 1366 Year of the Staff

The group spends another healing and taking care of errands. Tellazar re-applies his Stoneskin spells on himself and Ayremyr. Samira spends time at the Temple of Mystra.

5th of Marpenoth 1366 Year of the Staff
Better Late Than Never

It is midmorning before any of the heroes get up from bed. Tellazar heads of to the Tower of the Order. The wizard’s guild has been after the adventuring wizard for almost year to provide them with a wizard’s sigil that is required of any caster of real ability. Tellazar has been in out of the city and had ignored several reminders during his last visits. A note was given to him this morning by Corthen’s servant. It informed Tellazar that he could either comply with the requirement and provide his sigil or he could seek his research, components, and training outside of the guild.

Tellazar goes to Watchful Order and asks to speak to the guildmistress. The head of the Order meets with the young mage. Tellazar apologizes for his poor efforts and produces his sigil that he had already created. Mhair Szeltune accepts the sigil and lets him know that the restrictions have been lifted.

Meanwhile, Samira is busy performing healing rites for the others who suffered at the hands of the Frost Giants. After she has exhausted all of her powers for the day, Corthen and Rehs depart the manse on business.

Corthen strolls to Millomyr Harps and make contact with the owner, Jhandess Millomyr. He tells his Harper contact all that has transpired since his last report. She thanks him and promises to send word through her network.

Rehs takes some time looking for properties for sale. He looks at several shops and a house. Erith and Ayremyr take it easy since their wounds were the greatest.

4th of Marpenoth 1366 Year of the Staff
H is for ?

The group recovered from the previous two days, returns directly back to the ice cavern from the previous night. They walk through the mirror gate. The group with Rehs scouting out in the advance check down some other tunnels. In the next cavern, the thief finds crates stacked up in storage. The party joins Rehs. They discover that the crates bear the same “H” burned into the wood, that they had found several times in Undermountain storage rooms. These crates also seem to contain foodstuffs. The group is intrigued and Rehs, Corthen, and Samira discuss whether or not the “H” symbol stands for Halaster Blackcloak or not.

The adventurers push on and soon meet three frost giants. There is a melee and the giants are killed in the battle. Corthen leads the group further through the ice caves. Another cave is the sleeping quarters of a giant. Several of the elves and the thief sneak into the room and make sure he doesn’t wake up to cause them problems. After the Guardians have dispatched the giant, they find the next chamber adjoining is occupied by a large band of ogres. With blades and spells, the band battles the evil humanoids. Corthen checks the area for secret passages and recovers any treasure.

Hoping to find the missing staff, the group pushes deeper into the lair of the Frost Giants. Corthen leads the party to split passage, one returns back out to the deep crevasse in the ice and the other is a ice cavern occupied by giants. Samira has almost depleted her healing prayers for the day but the majority of the party wishes to tempt fate and charge into the cavern that is occupied.

The Guardians focus on the guard at the door and they are able to fell him, but another angry giant steps up to inflict damage on the adventurers. Battered and bleeding, the heroes dispatch him. Six more Frost Giants wielding huge clubs and axes push forward. Tellazar uses a number of his paralyzing and slow orb spells to keep the group alive. Rehs swings his sword at one of the enemy and nearly slips on the ice and he drops his blade. Corthen also has some ill luck when his sword Harrikas is released and it proceeds to hit a paralyzed target, releasing him back into the battle.

The party manages to eek out a win, but everyone is badly off with visible wounds and bruises. The group gathers its spoils and retreats back to the mirror gate and to Waterdeep.

3rd of Marpenoth 1366 Year of the Staff
Lair of the Frost Giants

The blizzard conditions ease and the party, half-frozen digs themselves out of their shelters and survey the area. Nothing can be seen but endless frozen waste to the north. Corthen speaks to his friends and suggests they try heading off south towards a dark spot far off.

Traveling for the day, the group finally reaches the stone face. It is dark and freezing cold. Corthen suddenly stumbles and falls down in a depression. Samira informs him that he has discovered the tracks of a giant. The group follows the tracks that lead to a crevasse in the icy ground near the stone cliff. Hoping for shelter and trusting their luck, the band descends down into the crevasse.

The heroes find that the trail splits into several options. Rehs suggests they take the left opening in to the ice since it looks less traveled. Entering, the Guardians of the Past come face to face with four Frost Giants. Corthen yells at the male giants in common tongue that they are only here for the drow. The blue-skinned behemoths do not seem to understand and they attack the heroes with boulders. The group battles back and manages to slay the giants without sustaining any deaths. Samira and Tellazar’s stoneskin spells keep the wizard and warriors from dying.

After the battle, Samira uses the Spear of Lochal and tries speaking with one of the giants. She asks him about Eclavdra, but the giant does not answer her. The group decides that they should leave the frozen land they are in and decide that Erith should use the Drow Teleport Chain to return back to the opening left by the magic mirror. The group waits for nearly an hour before Erith steps back through the mirror’s gate and into the ice room. Tellazar inquires why he was gone for so long. Erith shares that he could not find the invisible end of the open mirror gate back out on the glacier at night and during a storm. He tells them that he had to use his helm to teleport back to Waterdeep. The cold and injured heroes withdraw back through the mirror gate to Corthen’s manse for the night to heal and sleep in a warm bed.


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