Mysteries of the Nentir Vale

The Dwarven Citadel
The party returns for rest and re-equipment

Thane Harvak of the Glintshield listened to the paladin drone on about some crusade, somewhere. A veteran of diplomacy, Harvak knew to keep his mouth shut and waited patiently. When the gleaming paladin introduced the dragonborn, he took his cue.

“Greetings, brave knight of Pelor. Welcome to Glintshield Keep, such as it is..”

The burly, gray and red-bearded Dwarf gestured in the direction of the clanging and thumping sounds. Several stout Dwarves were repairing walls and battlements. Others handed weapons-crossbows, bolts and finely-crafted blades-up to soldiers manning the wall. The Dwarves sang work songs that produced a steady cadence, contributing to their rhythmic efficiency.

O cò bheir mi leam air an luing Èireannaich.O cò bheir mi leam.
Gura e Iain bheir mi leam air an luing Èireannaich
O co bheir mi leam

“Oy! Der’s the fellas!” One of the soldiers yelled and pointed beyond the wall.

Outside of the fortress, Duggin, Nimozaran, Shield, Scroopel and Soloman, the dragonborn walked up to the portcullis. The gate shrieked as it was retracted up into the wall. As the party made their way through, a hearty cheer erupted amongst the Dwarves. Uncharacteristically, Duggin raised a fist in triumph.

“Those towering buffoons just got theirs!” he shouted.

The next cheer was punctuated by thunderous applause. Scroopel, upon Shield’s adamantine shoulders shouted something in Goblin, eliciting a few laughs from stragglers. He shrugged and kept quiet. Nimozaran bumbled through the sea of assembled dwarven muscle, accepting a frothy mug handed to him. He quaffed the ale and looked around. The gleaming knight drew his attention.

“Ehhrm…what in the Nine Hells? Young Erathan? Do my old eyes deceive me? You’re alive!”

The eldest son of Lord Markelhay had been on a quest, far to the south of the Vale. No one had heard news of him for the better part of a year.

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Epilogue:
Return to the Glinshields

The stone giant, Laerthar, fell with a loud thump to the hardwood floor of Nosnra’s quarters. Scroopel hopped up, immediately, onto the two heaps of dead giant flesh. The little goblin rifled through the stinking furs, looking for anything of value-there was none. He gave a little shrug and slid down Nosnra’s bloody form.

Duggin leaned back, reclining on a giant-sized chair leg, while trying to regain his breath. He gazed at the dead dire bear, towards the rear of the chamber.

“Nasty varmint!” the dwarf spat.

“Mm..yes, a terrible…uhh..specimen." Nimozaran muttered.

Shield stood motionless in the midst of burnt giant remains. He was coming down from what the others might call an adrenaline rush, but the construct didn’t have a name to put on it. Sure, he was battered, dented and his metal skin was nearly cracked below his breastplate, but he felt no physical pain. He just new he’d need someone to repair him.

Nimozaran the Green held a pair of spectacles to his eyes while he read the communications of the giants. Who was Obmi? Who was King Snurre? The latter appeared to be the overall commander of the operation. The former, the old wizard had no clue.

“We need to return to the Gintshield clan, friends. This news is of urgent import to the king. We’ve learned a great deal about what’s going on here, but, there’s much that remains to be discovered.”

Duggin stood back up and spoke.

“Agreed, Nimo. There’s still giants about, but they’ll be no further threat to the Vale. Still, we face the rest of the army…giants all! We need to speak to the King. He’ll have an idea of what to do and where to go, from here.”

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Defeat of Nosnra

The adventurers woke from their extended rest in the Smithy. Nemozaran pulled out a scroll from a pouch on his waist. Making the dwarf and orc comfortable on the stone floor with old fur skins, he proceeded to finally heal their wounds. Telling the remaining hostages to wait till they got back, the group decided to explore the secret temple. Heading back into the mines, they came into a spot where the miners discovered an ancient passageway.

The walls of this collapsed corridor bore faded murals depicting figures clad in violet robes. The figures marched solemnly toward the north. Tentacles protrude from their robes, where arms should be.

This dark room was strangely free of dust and lined with green stone, veined with purple. Four pillars of similarly-colored stone are carved to resemble knots of tentacles that unfurl and spread across the vaulted ceiling. Empty alcoves lined the north and south walls, and an altar of translucent yellow stone stood at the far end of the room. Behind the altar was a deep alcove with a concave back wall made of glassy, violet stone. The party saw a monstrous form reflected in its surface, and then they realizde that the reflection was their own. This concave, violet wall drew the heroes’ eye, and as they gazed into its reflective surface, an amorphous form with writhing black tentacles appears within. You suddenly feel the urge to do something . . . terrible.

A Mage of Saruun, Perakos, by name, with a long nose, burnt ear and wearing glasses discussed something in whispery voices with the hill giant shaman, Hunamunths.

“The Prince of Demons enjoys the chaos and wanton destruction the giants are bringing to the Nentir Vale. Our agreement with you stands. The minotaurs will be kept busy protecting their ill-gotten 7 Pillared Hall. We look forward to you crushing the dwarves! We shall then have Fallcrest between the hammer and the Anvil! Dagon’s plan is foolproof! You were wise to consult with me. This Temple is a glorious find. We shall pray to the gods of the Abyss on your behalf, I shall teach you the ritual to commune with Demogorgon’s Cult.”

The party rushed in to stop this unholy alliance. Spewing forth elemental power the mage retreated up the stairs towards the altar. The Shaman sent blasts of minor earthquakes into the party’s midst. Sneaking up and planting his giantslayer deep into the back of the giant, Scroopel caught his own reflection in the mirror. A blast of power from another plane struck him in the forehead and left a scar like an upside down Y. The resulting insanity that racked his little brain made him run up and place his hand on the altar. Going cross-eyed, he forgot what he was doing there as an amorphous purple blob rose from the altar.

Shield leaped into the fray, absorbing blast after blast of elemental streams. When Duggin placed the strange holy symbol on the altar, the symbol sunk into it and transformed into an amorphous blob. After a few seconds, this blob coalesced into a purple gem with black veins. The gem rose up to the top of
the altar. The gem is worth 5,000 gp.letter.jpg

Stone steps lead up from the chief ’s treasury. In the niche past the stairs, is a large, unlocked wooden trunk containing twenty-one scroll tubes made from hollowed bones. One scroll tube contains a letter to Nosnra, written in Giant, from someone named Obmi.

Two padded chairs, each one covered with stitched human skin, face the fireplace, above which is mounted the head of a great white stag. Between the chairs stands a round table with a pair of bronze flagons atop it. A bearskin rug covers the floor in front of the fireplace. The characters enter through a secret door in the western wall. Sleeping in one of the chairs, was the Hill Giant chief, Nosnra. Scroople sneaked up to Nosnra and created a deep line of red across his neck.
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A dire bear burst into the room, followed by Nosnra’s Hill Giant minions and Laerthar, a massive stone giant.

Shield was immediately set upon by the dire bear, absorbing vicious slam after vicious slam. Several of Nosnra’s minions also assailed the construct-turned-hero. Nosnra retreated to the back of the room, greviously wounded. Scroopel tried to move in on the Chief, but was hampered by the other giants.

Nimozaran unleashed a deadly ball of fire, incinerating. Nosnra’s lackeys and further wounding the Chief and his stone giant lieutenant. Finally, the path to Nosnra was open, and Scroopel closed in, only to be smashed by Nosnra’s fist, as he came within reach. Duggin repeatedly called upon his divine patrons to heal the beleaguered Shield and Scroopel. The party’s relentlessness awarded them victory, as their foes finally succumbed to their wounds.

Six log pillars and a web of blackened rafters supported the ceiling, which reached its apex 30 feet above. A great fire pit dominated the hall. Roasting over the pit was an ox, two sheep, and four pigs impaled on spits. Behind the fire pit stood a long trestle table cluttered with haunches of meat, chunks of cheese, bread, and clay mugs. Around the table were five
chairs, three against the back wall and one on each end. The middle chair was larger than the others and covered with
furs. Empty barrels, crates, and chests litter the hall, their contents plundered from caravans and villages that have recently fallen victim to the giants’ depredations. The heroes took a well-deserved break to enjoy their incredible victory!

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Feramaug

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The Iron Dragon Feramaug bears her teeth and snarls as the sword sinks deep into her side. “Not worry Vistapalk has Tiktag guarding my brood. When they are old enough they will find you and destroy you! Vistapalk has seen this vision – Vision of blood! When we are once more worshipped as gods! Not Worry, you will die soon tasty mortals!” She opens her gaping maw and streams of lightning shoot towards you and electrifies the air around her.

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Roper!

7-1-2014_9-45-51_AM.jpg Dungeon masonry gives way to rough-hewn walls streaked with veins of pale green crystal. Mining sounds come from deeper inside the caverns.

A jagged mound of rocks suddenly attacks the group. Forming long tentacles and a maw filled with razor sharp teeth a Roper savagely attacks the group thinking they are an easy meal.

From the other passageways heavy footfalls are heard as Stone giant overseers come to investigate the melee. A warrior from Fallcrest, Ves joins the fray, as Javok, looking for able warriors to assist the team finds his equipment and frees him. The stone giant overseers are using dwarf slaves to mine for ore. They have split the miners into two groups; Orcs and Dwarves. Dwarf slaves and orc ruffians are scattered throughout these caverns. All dwarf slaves wear shackles on their ankles.

Veins of green crystal run through the walls of this cavern, which is bisected by a glittering stream of water that flows toward the north. The stream that bisects this cavern flows toward the north. Two sinkholes, one on each side of the stream, serve as lairs umber hulks.
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At the bottom of the southernmost sinkhole is a brass scroll tube containing a ritual scroll (Drawmij’s Instant Summons).

This tunnel collapsed long ago, before the hill giants built their steading above the dungeon. The sound of moving water can be heard to the north and east

The underground stream pours into a cistern through a 5-foot-wide crack in the southeast wall and disappears through smaller, impassable fissures to the southwest. A shallow pool of cold water forms in the middle of the room. It appears the hill giants draw their drinking water from this source.6-20-2014_10-23-41_AM.jpg

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Into the Mines

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OOC: I made a mistake see that North actually goes to the left of the map.

Javok agreed with Duggin that the Smithy would be a good place to shore up. Bringing the rest of the prisoners back there, a noble looking Dragonborn named Soloman asked to join the group. He was apparently camping and was knocked unconscious and woke up in a cell here. The rest of the slaves were too scared or weak to fight so they locked themselves in the Smithy.

As they stepped out into the hall a bugbear guard stuck his ugly snout out of a passageway ahead and began to cry in alarm. The gong was heard and the mustering of guards was perceived across the dungeon. Sleepy bugbears were climbing out of their flea infested beds. Rubbing their peckers and grabbing their morningstars they charged the goblin who leapt into their midst. Stepping in front of Scroopel, The indomitable construct created a barrier that contained them in their chamber. The bugbears screamed and threw chairs at Shield in frustration and anger.

From the wide hall from the North a panting ghastly hill giant—hunchbacked, twisted, and with one good eye burst through the door. Cambering up and over him snarling, salivating, bare assed apes barred their teeth at the group. Running in front of their master, bugbears came in from around the jailer’s quarters to avoid the bottle neck Shield was creating, just in time for Duggin to cast a spell slowing their advance, then followed up by the Warlord with a magical arrow that appeared from some arcane power. Calling out as a true commander he rallied the group and orchestrated their attacks with brutal efficiency. The wizard created an illusion of magic mirrors that the bugbears bumped into each other like some kind of comic slap-stick bard performance. Infuriated the Keeper waddled through this quagmire the group created getting as far as the bugbears, so frustrated he cut one of the dazed bugbears in half trying the reach the group and clear a path for himself.

Vaulting over the bronze warder in the jailer’s room – Scroople was not impressed with the sneer the Bugbear Jailer glared at him with. Leaping over him he planted his dagger in his back- turning the sneer into an awful grimace.

The apes, keeper and bugbears failed to make any progress into the hall and the group once again unloaded on them – when the fireball hit them the smell of burning fur and flesh punctuated the fiery explosion.

Impressed with their new commander – the group saw what a benefit the dragonborn would be to their team. If he were to commanded every encounter like that one the felt they were ready to meet Nosenra head on. Duggin being the voice of reason – persuaded them to not let their conquest here go to their heads – he had seen giants in combat before and they needed to practice their fighting style, plus they had to free the rest of the prisoners and get them to safety. They decided to explore the mines and ensure all of the slaves were not in danger.

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Fire Giant Smithy and Torture Chamber

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map2.jpgAfter dealing with the bugbears manning the gongs they find that a few smoky torches burn along the walls. Benches and tables are pushed out of the way, revealing a black stone floor worn by the tread of countless feet. Quietly and quickly moving down the southern passage they found a row of prisons. Dwarves made plaintiff whining for the adventurers to release them as they passed by. They told them of the dungeon, about the bugbear guards, the giants, apes, the torture room to the east they could hear the screams of the newest victims and the clang of the fire giant Smolderheart in the room beyond making weapons of war for the giant steading. The group assured their release when all was safe for them, but until them to stop causing a ruckus and let the party do their job.

This part of the dungeon is particularly noisy. Sounds of metal striking metal issue from the smithy (area 8A), but the noise is muffled by horrid screams emanating from the torture chamber (8b).

Enticed by the noises beyond Duggin, Scrooples, Shield and Nemozaran opened the door to the torture chamber.

This area contains an iron maiden, a wooden rack, iron boots, thumbscrews, chains, whips, branding irons, and strappados. Two hill giants wearing black hoods torture a half-orc strapped to the rack. One of them tightens the
winch while the other lashes the half-orc with a scourge. Mounted above a pit of hot coals in the center of the room is
a heavy iron spit to which a gagged dwarf has been tied.

The surprised giants were dazed by the magic of the dwarf and old wizard while shield ensured they could not escape and the little goblin clambered up their backs and slit their throats while they attempted to flee and cry for help. Their cries erupted in a gurgle of blood as the short sword giant slayer lived up to its name and the little goblin giggled in delight.

Releasing the half-orc they discovered he was from the Severed Eye orc tribe and was being tortured because he was attempting to lead the orcs in revolt. Javok is a scout who was captured by the giants while on a reconnaissance mission. He recently tried to lead the orc slaves in a revolt against his captors, but the uprising was put down quickly. He is in rough shape as the rack has pulled his arms and legs out of their sockets.

Releasing the dwarf from the spit he tells you he is Nyzan Silvervein. He describes the temple to the East that has depictions of priests in robes with tentacles in the place where arms might be.

Taking a quick break they investigated the Torturers’ Quarters and found a pair of giant-sized beds covered with musty furs and two large, unlocked wooden chests. The chests contained an assortment of bones, trick cards and moldy bread. In addition, one chest contained a sack of 500 gp, and the other contained a potion of vitality. Leaving the dwarf and orc in the beds of the giants to rest they promised to return and heal them.

Entering the Smithy they see: Giant-sized weapons and armor lie scattered along the walls of this hot and smoky room. A large iron stove serves as a forge, and in front of it stands a giant with flaming-orange hair and charcoal-colored skin. He wears a chainmail apron, has tight green pants, and he holds a white-hot axe blade steady atop an anvil using a pair of iron tongs. Then, he strikes the blade with his fiery hammer. Shackled dwarves and several orc slaves, all covered with soot, are helping the giant by pumping the bellows and assembling armor. As he sees the party enter the room he bellows out a command to kill them and with a mighty strike of his flaming hammer he releases a giant elemental that appeared to be bound to the stove.ce__fire_giant_blacksmith_by_orogion-d6yqkiw.jpg

Acting quickly Duggin called out to his gods Moradin and Torog and quickly rebound the elemental. The wizard incapacitated the horde of orcs that tried to stop their advance by turning their blood to stone. Going to work the goblin let fly a magical stone, from his sling that teleported Shield right in front of the Fire giant. Smashing down in huge fiery streaks the giant’s hammer bounced off the seemingly indestructible construct. The rest of the team assembled around the frustrated giant and brought him to his knees while the dwarven slaves rejoiced at their salvation!

Piled against the walls of the room are some of Smolderheart’s creations, including giantsized weapons (nineteen longspears, forty-one spears, sixteen battleaxes, and nine two-handed swords) and various pieces of giant-sized armor. Smiling triumphantly Duggin grabbed the fire giant’s +3 flaming Warhammer.

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Penetrating the Steading

Nimozaran appeared before the shocked Thrane and the group. Unfortunately it was exactly in the same spot as Tangarth and he was telefraged and shunted into the wall. Since no one really cared about him anyway they quickly forgot about him and carried on. The old geezer happened to have the correct ritual to revive the bitchy little goblin, to the rest of the group’s umbrage.

The group decided that a small raiding party was the only way to get to the hill giant steading and figure out what was going on there. It was about ten miles away through the giant encampments of lean-tos, tents and caves. For the first part the adventures attempted to cut through the forest in the hills that traveled near the road. Wandering around for at least an hour the group found itself traveling in a circle and decided to risk the road. As soon as they set foot on the giant beaten path a loud group of hill giants crossing a bridge saw them. Thinking quick Sir Mike, the only one who spoke giant, grunted out a lie. Not the brightest group of meatheads the giants continued down the road, unconcerned of the motley group of small humanoids. Believing they were emissaries for the Mages of Saruun. Sneaking around a couple more patrols and encampments they finally came to their destination.
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A massive timber stronghold hides among the hills. The well-worn trail that you’ve been following ends before a pair of 15-foot-high doors made of ironbound logs. Thicker logs comprise the walls of the stronghold. The wooden roof inclines toward the middle, reaching a height of 30 feet at its peak. The stronghold has no windows, but a squat watchtower overlooks the entrance. Smoke rises from numerous stone chimneys. A log guardhouse stands apart from the main stronghold, but connected by a palisade wall of vertical logs 15 feet high. Heavy log doors set into the palisade lead to a courtyard lodged between the two buildings.

The outer walls of the timber stronghold are fashioned from 5-foot-diameter logs laid horizontally. Inner walls use 3-foot-diameter vertical logs, and doors are ironbound log affairs 15 feet high, 6 feet wide, and 1 foot thick. The dirt floors are covered with stone tiles. Ceiling height varies from about 16 feet at the outer walls to 30 feet at the center. Blackened rafters support the roof. Rain falls often in the hills, and mist settles over the steading at night.

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Deciding that is was too risky to try to enter through the main gate the team scrambled up the side of the steading. The moldy roof had a number of huge chimneys, and finding one without smoke billowing from it they tied a rope to the construct Shield and sent him down. Finding an empty dining room he signaled for the rest of the group to repel down.

This dining hall contains a massive oak table surrounded by eight giant-sized chairs. The chairs at the end of the table are draped with furs and look more impressive than the others. Mugs, plates, and candelabra litter the tabletop. Animal furs, racks of antlers, and mounted heads adorn the walls. A copper dragon’s head is mounted above the fireplace.

Most of the furnishings in the steading are sized for 12-foot-tall hill giants. Tables, benches, door handles, and other room fixtures are typically twice as high, long, and wide as their human-sized equivalents and roughly eight times the weight.

Listening at the massive eastern door they heard the clanking of pots and pans and discerned that this must be abutting the kitchen.

Smoke fills this odorous kitchen, which features two large trestle tables covered with pots, kettles and bowls. Counters along the walls are likewise cluttered with wooden utensils, jugs, mugs, and plates. Barrels are piled near the tables, and various cheeses, smoked meats, and sausages hang from the blackened rafters. Simmering in the hearths are two fat iron cauldrons overflowing with hot broth. In front of the hearths stand a pair of hill giants wearing stained leather aprons, screaming instructions at a host of orc slaves and their ogre taskmasters.

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Using the confusion of the preparations for dinner the group snuck across the kitchen relatively unnoticed.
Entering a wide corridor they heard loud snoring from one room, a wild giant celebration in the next and then a few conspiratory whispers coming from the end of the hall. They are discussing the recent raid and laughing at the stupidity of the hill giants and ogres. Busting the door open they see the walls of this spacious room are adorned with racks of antlers, cured animal furs and skins, and the heads of various beasts, monsters, dwarves, elves, and humans. Three long, giant-sized beds heaped with furs are pushed into the corners of the room, and sitting on two of them are a pair of chortling stone giants. A large wooden chest is pushed against the east wall between them. A blazing fire crackles in the hearth across from the door.

As the battle ensues one of the stone giants pulls a rope hanging in the corner of the room and a bell is heard down the corridor. Grunts of complaint are heard across the hall as the ogres come from an alcohol induced slumber.

Amazed that the melee did not alert the rest of the steading they take a short rest while Scrooples opened the chest. The chest contains ten 500 gp gems, 700 gp, and a stone tablet engraved in Dwarven. It contains a message is written to Laerthar from Belastraya, sister of the stone giant thane. It translates as follows.

Laerthar, my love, Go to the hill giants. Help Nosnra plan his raids. Make sure he does not lose sight of our greater goal. Do this for your thane. Do this for me. Belastraya

Confirming their suspicions that there is something larger looming behind these giant raids they investigate the ogres sleep chambers and find a stairs leading under the complex.

Smoky, sputtering torches illuminate a spacious square room. Four thick pillars support the 30-foot-high ceiling. Benches and tables have been pushed against the walls, leaving most of the area clear. Brass gongs hang from wooden frames in the southwest and southeast corners, and a bugbear stands in front of each of them. Ironbound wooden doors and gaping hallways lead to other areas of the dungeon, and from somewhere in the darkness, you hear plaintive sobbing. Quietly assassinating the bugbears they asses the secret dungeon they have found. The masonry work down here is quite good, certainly superior to orc or giant work. Characters note that most of the stonework is old, patched in places with new mortar or shored up with newly hewn stone.6-9-2014_11-44-01_AM.jpg

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Scrooples the Gargoyle

In the gloom ahead, you see a massive stone slab blocking the way. The obviously thick and heavy slab looks impossible to move, but a broad set of stairs climb up to a pair of massive double doors. On the stairs sits an ill looking band of dwarven clansmen bearing tattoos similar to the ones adorning Duggin. And the adventurers are greeted by Duggin’s Clan-mates who seem to exhale a sigh of relief when they see you and the small troop of knights from Fallcrest.

Gwendar is the elderly leader of the Shadowed Chain cult is proud and autocratic in nature,

Serka is the devoted apprentice of Gwendar. She sees Gwendar as a father figure and maintains an aggressive and overprotective attitude toward him. She knows much but says very little beyond grunts of disapproval and growls of anger.

Rigdin is a young recruit to the cult. He says little, but his silence is merely a thin veneer of calm. Inwardly he vacillates between panic and despair.

The dwarves assure Duggin that Stonefang is still bound and seems pleased with the arrangements Duggin has made with the minotaurs and Humans of the Vale. As they talk they acend the stair. The gatehouse lies beyond the set of double doors that the clan opens graciously for the group. There is a thick lever is set into the wall beside the stairs. Next to it, a one foot-wide square channel in the wall runs straight up into the ceiling. At the base of the channel, a large circular impression contains a round nub of iron that is flush with the wall.

A hulking form dominates this chamber. It looks like a male dwarf the size of an ogre but made out of dusty, rusting steel. Beneath the dust. you spy Davek runes etched into the construct’s metal skin. Duggin incants an arcane phrase of some sort and the Construct moves at his command.

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The dwarves wave and wish the party luck as the construct once again closes the gate behind them. As they continue down the Black Phoenix Pass an expansive courtyard lies before them. A tall waterfall to their right creates a stream that bisects the courtyard and An old stone bridge crosses the stream. Across the stream, a tower looms high above, looking like it was hewn from the Mountain. citadel.jpg

Small fires light the citadel and screams of death reach the groups ears. A couple of strange dwarven statues adorn the road which cause you some alarm. Then as you begin to cross the bridge you see bizarre greyish creatures with no eye sockets attempting to gain entry to the tower.

basalisk.jpgTwo strange drakes move between the shadows, predatory creature who’s gaze turns a dwarven defender to stone; the weight of the new statue cracks the railing he was leaning against, and it falls and smashes to the ground, becoming a mound of small rock fragments.

grimlock.jpgSensing fresh meat the grimlocks licked the dwarven blood off their battle axes and turned to meet the group. Scrooples gracefully raced over the railing of the bridge –unimpeded and pushed the biggest brute off the bridge towards the waterfall. Shield naively charged the Basalisk and sensed a strange feeling in his legs as they began to harden and solidify. Duggin sensed the danger to his newfound friends and somehow managed to get one of the basalisks pushed off the bridge as well. The melee was going well till the stone gaze beast crawled from the river and turned its gaze upon poor little Scroople who’s little body solidified and began a statue. Sir Mike, Shield and Duggin bravely charged the beast and unmercifully slayed the monster in anger.

Pair-Gargoyles-Goblins-Mythical-Garden-Statue-Ornament-3-1.jpgPoking at the little statue, Shield tapped on its head, wondering about the little goblin. Is this what it felt like to lose a friend? Shield felt strangely uncomfortable – at first he found the little creature to be annoying, now that he was gone he kinda missed him. He did make a cute little gargoyle though…

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Elemental Rift!

A huge tunnel bores into mighty Stonefang Mountain; The crumbled dwarven ruins near the entrance can’t hide the fact that this marvel must have been built by giant hands. In fact, two enormous statues of wild-haired giants flank the entrance, carved in place as if holding up the weight of the mountain.

Most of the tunnel through the Black Phoenix Pass is 40 feet wide and 50 feet tall. Geometric shapes and faux pillars decorate the walls for most of its length, with occasional areas decorated by huge bas-relief carvings of giants. In the places with the giant carvings, the dwarves made their own smaller bas-relief carvings. Although respectful of the giant’s artistry in the way they are arranged, the dwarven carvings refute the grand images of the giants by showing dwarves slaying giants and freeing themselves from slavery. Various sized cracks split the carved tunnel walls in places, and cold, drinkable water from the mountain above sometimes trickles down the cracks, streaming across the floor and pooling in low points or escaping through cracks in the floor. In many places, the ceiling is riddled with half-inch long stalactites that have begun to form among the limestone.

A deep rumble fills the tunnel, and suddenly the ground shakes. A wide crevasse opens behind the group, separating them from the knights with an ear splitting crack, followed by a smaller opening in the ceiling.
Duggin noticed a large hole in the ceiling – it was a rift of some sort – pulsating with elemental energy.

Up from the cracks and through the rift came a hill giant shaman and magma beasts. hillg1.jpg

In a deep gravelly voice the Shaman taunted Duggin: “Duggin – you are too late for our task here has been completed. Stonefang sends his regards.”

Magma beasts are elemental beings that originate in the Elemental Chaos. Many now live in the natural world, having crossed over into volcanic regions of the surface and the Underdark.magma1.jpg

As shield, Sir Mike and Scrooples fought off the magma beasts Duggin countered the ritual the Hill Giant started and closed the rift as waves of energy from the elemental chaos washed over his companions.magma2.jpg

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