As it is written: “At Winter Solstice within the Year of the Scarlet Witch wise men shall gather to stand between Darkness and Light.”
23-26 Nightal, 1491 DR
Last Episode: RELIC FOUND
CHAPTER ONE: FOUR OF NINE
The Neverwinter Nine are folk heroes who have not been seen by the public eye since the events now called by historians as “The Rise of Tiamat” two years ago.
In Chapter One, the cadre continued to talk with some of the folk heroes known as the Neverwinter Nine: Vrae’Ree, Abadon, and Thaed. Before long, the three were joined by a fourth hero, Tharivol. While Abadon and Thaed seemed to remain antagonistic towards the cadre, Vrae’Ree explained that although it did not appear to be so, they were serving the Light by working with Asmodeus, aka King Thorn of Neverwinter.
The cadre seemed to accept this and did not question Vrae’ree further.
Vrae’Ree did keep the Skull of Alaundo, however he gave the cadre a Staff of Defense and the Well of Souls. He explained that King Thorn has ordered them to attack the Lizardfolk village and leave one alive in order to fuel the Well of Souls with enough power to be used against Lolth. The Well was in the form of a bright gleaming green ring.
CHAPTER TWO: MIRABAR
In Chapter Two, the cadre travels to the northern city of Mirabar.
Mirabar is a human city that rests atop Dwarven caverns. On the surface, humans dominate the population, with some Dwarves mixed in, and a handful of Gnomes and Halflings. The uppermost level of the Undercity is mostly Dwarves, with some few humans. The mixing of races is due to convenience of trade, preference, or skill; just as some few humans like to mine, to imbibe strong Dwarf drink, and to work underground, so do a few Dwarves take to the open sky, doing dock work, or even manning and building ships. The lower levels beneath Mirabar are a ll dwarven, as even the most dwarf-like human can live so deep below ground for only so long. Almost all of its citizens, regardless of race, honor Moradin and the Dwarven gods, making Mirabar a dwarven city in spirit and ethics.
The cadre arrived in Mirabar using the Savras Scepter and the Sarraukh Circles in the Hall of Mist. They made their way through the amazing city to its center hub of trade, and spent a few hours in the open air marketplace. They were able to refill their supplies, sell a few of their treasures, and do some exploring. They found the city and its people welcoming and refreshing.
Soon they made their way to the monastery at the center of the city. A towering building in stark marble stood glowing in the darkness, empowered by the magic granted by Tempus, god deity of honor. Shensheng Cibie made a generous donation to the temple. The cadre was offered food and lodging. They did not reveal that they were The Ones Who Walk although in the morning when they departed, they saw the temple’s High Priest, Adon Cordell, was watching them from a perch on the temple’s walls.
While in the temple, the cadre was able to confirm rumors that higher level healing magic does not seem to be functioning properly. For example, the dead cannot be raised. This started on the night of the Winter Solstice, the same night the cadre gathered together at the Cave of Tranquility in High Forest.
Later, the cadre chartered a ferry to take them to the ancient Dwarfhold of Gauntlgrym. The trip was pleasant and peaceful.
CHAPTER THREE: VAULT OF KINGS
In Chapter Three, the cadre arrived at Gauntlgrym to meet with King Bruenor
Once the cadre arrived at the gates of Gauntlgrym they were welcomed as the king’s guests and escorted into the underground city. through the Vault of Kings, and shown to guest quarters. The Dwarves of Gauntlgrym take matters of hospitality seriously. ensuring that the monks were offered food. drink, and a chance to rest and refresh themselves before their audience with the king.
Gauntlgrym has become a formal meeting place for the Factions operating within the Sword Coast and throughout Faerûn. The ancient Dwarfhold serves as a safe haven for those working against the Dark Powers that have risen since the Spellplauge and the Darkening.
Gauntlgrym was only recently won back from the clutches of the Drow of House Xorlarrin. The Drow formed a new city in Gauntlgrym called Xorlarrin, where they produced fine weapons at the Forge and traded them with the surface folk in Luskan and Neverwinter. Although Battlehammer and his clan has worked hard to cleanse the halls of Gauntlgrym of the influence of Lolth, her presence still lingers here. It is a thorn in the side of the King.
The cadre was led through the vast hallways and long corridors. They had to proceed through many checkpoint along the way, each time being welcomes by soldiers and guards. They were treated with great respect throughout the entire process, often treated as if they were nobility or ambassadors.
Finally, after about an hour of being led through the magnificent Dwarven stronghold, they arrived at the main Throneroom. The King was there listening to several of his advisors. The advisors were arguing about some kind of threats within the Underdark.
As the cadre approached, they began to feel a strange sensation. The world around them seemed to slow down. Their vision swam, and they started to feel weak. The last thing they saw before everything went black was the Dwarves rushing towards them with looks of concern on their faces.
The cadre collapsed at the Dwarves feet, unconscious.
CHAPTER FOUR: PSYCHIC ASSAULT
In Chapter Four, the cadre fights Lolth in psionic combat.
As mentioned previously, Lolth still holds some power within Gauntlgrym . Although her temples have been torn down and her idols smashed, she remains. She sensed the cadre entering the ancient Dwarven city, and waited for her opportunity.
She gathered her power and dragged them into a pocket of the Ethereal plane that she had devised for this very moment when she would confront the Ones Who Walk.
The cadre found themselves face to face with a stunningly beautiful female Drow. Intrinsically they somehow knew within themselves that this was Lolth, the Demon Queen. She spoke to them in purring, lustful tones trying to convince them to give up their quest. Despite her efforts, none of the cadre gave in to her temptations.
The battle between the Spider Queen and the cadre was arduous. Although they were not aware of it, they were doing battle in a different plane of existence and essentially only using the powers of their mind.They should have fallen quickly, devoured by the Dark Queen.
Thankfully, though, these were the Ones Who Walk. They had been gifted a spark of psionic power by their master. Using this mystic power, they were able to fight back and nearly defeat the Drow goddess.
Lolth was appalled. She spat in anger and confusion, shouting angrily. “You are not mere humans,” she screamed. “I have been deceived! The blood of gods flow within you!”
Lolth could not finish the fight. Before long, she realized she had underestimated her foes. She expelled them from the pocket dimension, returning them to their bodies.
The cadre awoke on the cold stone floor of the throneroom, surrounded by a dozen veyr concerned Dwarves. King Battlehammer ordered that the monks he transferred to the infirmary and that his best healers attend to the visitors.
Before long, the cadre was resting comfortably in infirmary which looked more like a feast hall than a hospital.
CHAPTER FIVE: CHOSEN OF LOLTH
In Chapter Five, the cadre meet Drizzt Do’Urden, the Chosen of Lolth.
Once the cadre recovered, they were able to sit and speak with King Battlehammer about their quest to find the “Chosen of Lolth.” This seemed to concern the Dwarf, but after a short time he led them to a room containing only a bed (containing Drizzt) and a single cloaked figure, Artemis Entreri.
Here they discovered that Drizzt Do’Urden, legendary hero of the North, was the Chosen of Lolth. Although Drizzt follows the goddess Mielikki, Lolth has named Drizzt as he Chosen and her Champion. This speaks volumes of her natural Chaotic nature as a demon.
Drizzt had been severely wounded while confronting the demon prince, Demogorgon within the Underdark. He was driven mad by the demon prince, and has been in a coma ever since. Healing magic of all types have been applied to him, but since the Winter Solstice, the magics have failed to mend his wounds.
Artemis Entreri has been at his side since the beginning. The two of them went into the Underdark together to confront the demon prince. Along with the help of Jarlaxle Baenre, they almost succeeded however Demogorgon was too much for them.
Artemis Entreri spoke up to the cadre, telling them that he had been expecting them. He said that he had been told by Drizzt before their quest that they would come seeking help. Artemis told them that he would assist them in getting into the Shadowfell so that they can confront Lolth, however he said that they would have to find their own way out using the Gloaming Gate.
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