(Forgotten Realms) Scepter Tower of Spellgard

An Unlikely Group of Adventurers
Backstory

Diven by the common desire to journey to the legendary ruins of the once magnificent Netheril city now known as Spellgard, it came to be that a most unlikely group of adventurers would join forces. Though they find themselves joined in arms with those who but few days ago they called strangers, each of them are driven by their own goals, goals that they could not hope to accomplish on their own. For now, this band of unlikely adventurers requires one another. Will we see them come to find one another as friend, or see them go their separate ways once they have gained that which they seek? Only time will tell…

Llorkh This story begins in the city of Llorkh, nestled in the Grey Vale beyond the Greypeak Mountains. It is here where each of the heroes first met one another. Many of them had traveled a long and perilous road to reach Llorkh, coming from places such as Zelbross, Deepspur and even the Underdark. Regardless, they now all found themselves seeking safe passage to Spellgard, if such a thing even existed. Warnings of danger were all that were offered by person after person in their inquires.

“Beware the Goblins, they have ambushed many along the road leading to that place”, a Dragonborn merchant warned.

“Do watch out for the Lizardfolk north east of here, they have been know to attack!”, offered yet another.

BaridlIndeed it was true, The Fallen Lands were a dangerous place to journey, made even more so since the rise of the Spellplague.

Soon it came to their attention that a Dwarf merchant calling himself Thurr Gargengrim was to lead a trade caravan to the Monastery of the Precipice located in the ruins of Spellgard which would depart in only a few days time. Seeing no safer alternative each of the heroes began to trickle into Thurr’s shop hoping to gain admittance into the caravan. As he had done on countless trips in the past, Thurr gladly welcomed anyone who sought to journey to Spellgard to join his caravan. And so it came to be that our unlikely group of heroes were finally united. Little did they know how the events of the future would forever entwine their lives together in unimaginable ways.

All was unexpectedly quite during their travels, that is until near the end of the third day as the caravan was slowly making progress over the ill-maintained road winding through the Valley of the Dogs.Mm35 pg153a Lying in wait a group of Hobgoblins sprang their well prepared ambush on the unsuspecting and road weary caravan. A barrage of arrows and spears rained down upon the travelers striking three dead instantly. At a full sprint the Hobgoblins charged out of the thick tree line carrying rusty swords and wooden shields bearing the symbol of a clenched fist. Witnessing firsthand the extraordinary abilities of one another, the Heroes began to fight together against this common enemy. The battle raged for several minutes and in the end the Hobgoblins lie either dead or fleeing, mainly at the hands of the Heroes.

Fearing the Hobgoblins would return in stronger force the caravan pushed on with haste, traveling until sun light no longer illuminated their way. Calling the caravan to a stop, Thurr’s voice cracked through the crisp air like thunder.

“We shall make camp here for the night, Spellgard is but half a days travel from here. We shall depart at first light”.

Having found some common ground in the battle earlier that day the heroes decided to make camp with one another. Before they could get too comfortable however, they were interrupted by the arrival of Thurr.

Thurr“An unlikely lot of adventurers you be, but none the less I can say I’m glad to have you along. Allow me to offer you some sundries and ale, a token of my appreciation for your assistance with those nasty Hobgoblins”, Thurr offered in his most pleasant voice possible.

Gladly accepting, the group made small talk with Thurr learning rumors and information on Spellgard which he freely shared. The group learned that in the two decades he had been leading caravans up to Spellgard he often brought along adventures seeking to go there.

“Many folk seek to go to that place, mostly to try and speak with that Ghost Lady they say lives there. Answers any question asked of her they say, though I don’t believe in that prophecy junk they be spewin’, that’s for fools and those who have stared at the sun too long!”

Rumors of a dark presence at Spellgard, missing seekers, and an army of Orcs on the march through the Fallen Lands filled the ears of the heroes as Thurr continued. Before retiring for the night Thurr offered one last warning to the heroes.

“Not all who look for that Ghost Lady operate out of the Monastery there, seeker camps dot the ruins, and some of their residents are as dangerous as any monsters roaming the Fallen Lands”.

Just as Thurr has said, it only took the caravan a half days travel to finally reach Spellgard. But what would await the heroes there?

- The Collections of Halmester, Chapter 1


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Divine Request
Player Entry

Kossuth forgive me. In the last battle, I almost killed another of my companions. Please grant me new powers so that I may better serve my party. The powers I was given before are difficult to control, and the compulsion to use them against large numbers is very powerful. Though I helped my companions rid ourselves of the were-rat party, the damage against the warden is unforgivable.

The sorcerer sits and meditates while the rest of the party gathers their belongings, looks for treasure and dresses their wounds. As the time passes, she feels her connection to the arcane energies shift. Among her new powers she finds that she has a greater understanding of the elemental energy of cold. A sinister grin appears on her face as she rises.

She walks toward the warden. “Please forgive me. I owe you a life-debt and until you find it in your heart to forgive me, I will guard your life with my own.”

- Journal of Althaea the Sorcerer


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Decisions and speaking to the Spirits.
I stared into the Dragonborn’s eyes as she gave her oath, searching for signs of deception and found only sincerity and a furious conscience. At that moment, I made a decision. “The mountain does not begrudge the avalanche, rivers or relentless wind but wears the scars of their passing with acceptance and pride. I accept your oath and commend your conscience. You will likely find forgiveness from me will come easier than forgiveness from yourself.” I then spit in my palm and held out my hand to shake in aggreement, “May Blood Cousin approve our pact, we will fight together as family and protect one another.” Then with a genuine smile spreading accross my face, “though I will try to give you more breathing room in the future my friend!” A few minutes later, feeling a strong sense of fulfillment from my discussion with Althaea, I stood alone in a corner surveying the party. Menna and I had struck a quick bond, being from the same area, and the Genasi had shown an unusual understanding of Dwarven nature and society having spent much time among my people. Now I had forged a bond with Althaea and was feeling a strong sense of peace from the decision I made while speaking with her. It had been a long time since I had decided to trust those outside my immediate family. Trust came difficult for most Dwarves, having lost so much over the passing decades. After many days of growing uncertainty, I finally felt quiet inside, as if the spirits around me approved of my decision to trust the members of our party, as unusual as they were. Though some would be harder to trust than others I thought, looking across the room at the Drow who walked most often in a pool of shifting shadows. The younger Drow did not seem so ominous though he often appeared troubled by his own thoughts; but both were preceeded by their people’s reputation. I repeated a quick series of requests to Blood Cousin and the World Serpent for guidance and protection, then added one for Fate Weaver that her children may find their place and support the party. Looking over at the corpses of the Wererats, I couldn’t help but think we would all be needed to play our part if any of us were to survive or have a hope of finding Lady Saharel.
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Bonds

Jaeger made quick work of the Drake’s corpse with his large bush knife and tossed the last hunk of flesh and bone onto the dungeon floor where the starving wolves were gulping down the hunks of meat. He still felt the incredible power and peace of channeling the Form of the Mountain Spirits, his skin still covered in a layer of primal grey stone, and he had little to fear from the wolves should they decide to attack. For the moment though they ignored him, greedily feeding, and Jaeger slowly edged closer to the nearest wolf… reaching a cautious hand toward the chained collar attached to it’s immaciated neck. He was only inches away when the wolf suddenly crouched low and twisted away, his lips curling back in a vicious snarl as the wolf stared back at Jaeger with frenzied eyes; the reaction of a cornered and abused animal. Jaeger gave a low, primal growl of his own and slowly backed away, holding eye contact. For now he had reduced their frenzied hunger but they were not calm enough to allow him near the chains still anchored to the dungeon walls. He would have to return after his party had rested from their recent battles, so he backed up the stairs till the wall broke eye contact with the wolf. As he crested the top of the stairs he let go of the Mountain Form, feeling the familiar sense of loss that always came when he broke contact with the Primal Spirits; like saying farewell to a dear friend without knowing when you would meet again. As the surface of his skin lost the hard, stoney texture and his color returned to normal he scanned the room where his companions were recovering from the battle. Menna was tying off the last of the bandages on Althaea’s arm and beckoned Jaeger over to have his own wererat bites treated for the filthy beast’s infections. Jaeger walked over toward his friends forcing a smile for their victories and promising silently to himself that he would return for the wolves and hopefully, meet more of the vile creatures that made them captives.

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The Ramparts

It has been a dark and dreary business clearing the ramparts of ruined Netheril of the vile vermin and undead spawn inhabiting the dank and filthy hallways and chambers. The wererat clan has been all but irradicated, with a handfull fleeing with their lives to perhaps cause mischief elsewhere. A Goblin Hexer aligned with the rats and commanding a contingent of animated guardians, proved to be the final obstacle before the party prepared to enter the forbidding catacombs they hope will lead them to the Tower now controled by a menacing presence. After a short return to the Abbey to stow treasure, trade information with locals and travellers and purchase further supplies the party returned to the Ramparts and descended into the tombs of those long past, first entering a burial chamber where honored servants were once laid to rest centuries before looters came calling and disturbed their long sleep. Some other force though, has animated these long dead remains and the party faced a tenacious skeletal warrior that was finally defeated in a dangerous explosion of bone shrapnel. Large bats also attacked from the high, moss draped ceiling before all were killed or fled toward the surface. As if to spite the adventurers in the moment of victory a final trap left bloody wounds and punturered armor when a gate sprang open to pin a member of the party to the worn stone wall until the combined strength of the group broke it free from its hinges.
What horrors and unforeseen traps lurk in these deep catacombs and will the adventurers be successful in their quest for the Lady Saharel… Or will they find their own place of final rest beneath the runes of Lost Netheril.
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