Glidion: High Elf Wizard (Enchanter) who exaggerates stories of his past triumphs. Unwitting pawn of the Zhentarim.
Gracealyn “Darkeyes” Droverson: Tethyarian Human Noble Fighter (Champion) who seeks to restore her lost family fortunes. Member of the Lords Alliance.
Milo Miller: Lightfoot Halfling Cleric of Pelor (Life Domain). Seeks to spread worship of his god to Faerun. Watcher of the Harpers.
Salazar Tomoki: Shou Human Monk (Way of the Open Hand). Hermit who walks Faerun seeking enlightenment like Caine from Kung Fu.
Wrenna: Forest Gnome Rogue (Thief). Little is known of Wrenna’s past other then that she has been on the wrong side of the law from a young age.
Arriving in Red Larch, the group traveled through the village, taking note of the various shops. Salazar made a quick trip into Lorren’s Bakery to pick up a mushroom cheese-topped bun for Wrenna. These smelled so good that the weary travelers soon all stopped at the bakery to indulge in this savory treat.
Continuing to the Allfaiths shrine, the party met the two intendant priests: Imdarr Relvaunder a stout follower of Tempus (god of war) and Lymmura Auldarhk a follower of Sune (goddess of beauty and love). Imdarr seemed a little put off by Sister Garaele’s decision to become a third intendant at the shrine since traditionally only two priests act as intendants at any given time. Lymmura however welcomed Sister Garaele with open arms and offered to share her cell with the young acolyte of Tymora for the duration of her stay.
The group then pressed on to Bethendur’s Storage to drop off Gundren Rockseeker’s platinum ingots for eventual pickup by a caravan headed to Secomber. There they met Aerego Bethendur who was quick to tell them that his storage offered absolute privacy and that anything stored here would not be disturbed unless it started to rot; even then the contents would be disposed of discretely. When Glidion asked if that happen often Aerego simply said, “Not often”.
At this point the group sought out a tavern and ended up at the Helm at Highsun. Once again the group heard rumors of missing people, in this case a well armed delegation from Mirabar. A half-orc named Zomith invited herself to the party’s table and immediately displayed an interest in Glidion. The noble elf was more intimidated by her advances then aroused, but he did learn that the caravan Zomith had been travelling with had encountered the Mirabaran delegation about fifteen days ago somewhere between Beliard and Westbridge, and that she had brawled with the Mirabaran guards during the encounter. When she offered to discuss things in more detail with Glidion “in private”, the elf beat a hasty retreat.
Late in the evening the party bought rooms at the Swinging Sword across the street. The proprietor of the inn, an Illuskan woman in her forties named Kaylessa Irkell, was grateful to see a well-armed party of adventures in town and expressed her hope that they would put an end to the “fell magic” that was sweeping through the Slumber Hills. When they mentioned the missing Mirabaran delegation, she introduced them to Brother Eardon a half-elf acolyte of Lathandar (god of the dawn). Brother Eardon had recently came from Beliard by way of Westbridge, and confirmed that the delegation was in Beliard two tendays ago. The group resolved to travel the Larch Path to Beliard in search of the missing delegation in the morning.
Heading down the Larch Path, the group was distracted from this quest when they realized they were getting close to Feathergale Spire. Intrigued by the wingwear they found on the monks who attacked them earlier and curious about the Feathergale Society they left the path and travelled into the Slumber Hills. They arrived at Feathergale Spire in the evening.
The spire was separated from the road by a cliff with a shear drop of hundreds of feet. A brass bell hung from a wooden post near the ledge, and when they rang the bell a knight of the Feathergale Society named Savra Belabranta opened a small window near the gate and asked the adventurers what their purpose was at the spire. Convinced that their intentions were peaceful, she invited them in and brought them up to the pinnacle of the Spire to meet the Feathergale Society’s leader Thurl Merosska.
Thurl greeted the party and asked them their business. The party described their encounter with the wingwear wearing monks and asked if it was possible if any suits of wingwear had been stolen from them recently. Thurl declined to answer, but since the party seemed to be men and women of valor he invited them to join in the feast that below.
The party partook in the grand feast and traded stories of valor. As the feast was winding down, a knight burst into the room stating that a manticore had been sighted over the valley. Thurl believed this to be an opportunity to slay the beast and offered his ring to the man or woman who brought back its head. He asked the party if they wished to partake in the hunt, offering them hippogriffs to use. The party agreed to join the hunt and mounted on three hippogriffs with Wrenna and Milo doubling up with larger party members. The Feathergale Society knights mounted on giant vultures.
The beast was quickly spotted and the knights and the party took chase. Glidion caused a great deal of damage by loosing fireballs on the manticore from afar and Darkeyes proved a dead shot with her javelins. Salazar found himself frustrated by his lack of ability to engage at range, but Wrenna’s shortbow found its mark. The beast was brought down by Darkeyes’ final javelin, falling to the ground below. The party followed it down and Darkeyes used her axe to remove the dead beast’s head.
Returning to the Spire, Darkeyes was awarded Thurl’s ring. After the feast, Thurl confided to the party that he believed the monks of the Sacred Stone Monastery were a source of the evil in the valley. The party choose to spend the night in Feathergale Spire and resolved to check out the monastery in the morning.
During the night, Salazar was awakened by Savra. Salazar explained that because of his vows he was not interested in an assignation, but Savra patiently explained that was not why she was there. She was impressed by the valor of the group and wanted to confide the true purpose of the Feathergale Society: that they are on a secret mission to master elemental air to annihilate the enemies of Waterdeep. She was telling Salazar this because she was going to approach Thurl about allowing Salazar, and possibly his companions, to join the Feathergale Society. Salazar, and the rest of the group when he told them the next morning, said they would think about it.
The next morning the group headed off to find the Sacred Stone Monastery. While travelling through the Slumber Hills, they came upon a number of shallow graves with vultures circling overhead. After some debate, the party decided to exhume the bodies to see if they could be identified as any of the missing people they had heard about. They found one dwarf in artisan’s robes and one female human dressed as a member of Mirabar’s army. They also found one human male dressed in a black cloak with strange stony armor and one human male in white robes with black feathers at the shoulders. All were dead from arrow wounds or crushing blows. Convinced that at least two of the bodies were from the Mirabar delegation, they reburied the bodies and Milo performed funerary rites.
Continuing down the path described by Thurl, the party came upon the Sacred Stone Monastery around noon the next day. An impressive stone edifice, the group decided rather than knock on the front door they would look for a secondary entrance. Locating one on the southeast portion of the building, Wrenna examined the door and picked the lock.
Wrenna scouted ahead of the main group, who are not well known for their stealth. At the first interior door she heard the sounds of people sparring, similar to the katas that Salazar would do in the morning. She decided to leave this door alone for the moment and motioned for the group to move forward.
The next door was sealed by an arcane lock. Having no way to bypass the mystical protections, the group moved past this door as well. Wrenna then discovered stairs going down, but the party decided to continue exploring the upper level before braving the depths below.
Continuing forward they group entered a long narrow open air courtyard paved in red sandstone. To the north of them was the main temple area with large copper-sheathed doors and as well as another set of doors to the west. Gargoyle statues guarded each set of doors. Glidion expressed his concern, noting that “gargoyle statues always seem to come to life”. Giving the statues as wide a berth as possible the party approached the copper-sheathed doors.
Of course the gargoyles came to life and attacked, although contrary to Glidion’s expectations only two of them became animate. Showing uncharacteristic bravery, Glidion moved forward an loosed a lighting bolt on the two gargoyles. Salazar was able to use his newly acquired magical Yari to good effect against the creatures stone-like skin, while Darkeyes’ reliable magic axe Hew caused similar grievous wounds. The gargoyles were quickly dispatched.
The party then prepared to check out the copper-sheathed doors to the temple.
To be continued…