[Travel diary of Natali Starag]
After our mighty victory over the white dragon we set sail back to Waterdeep. Poor Lorea fell ill on the long voyage. We received a warm welcome from the crimson brotherhood who were happy to both have Makath the Crimson and many of their tomes returned. They are convinced that the dragon cult is a problem and pledges their support to the cause. The great Stor is recovered and back in fine form. We learn that Reverence was called away on a family mission while we were gone. We settle into our rooms to rest.
No sooner do I drop my traveling gear but there is a knock at my door. It is master Leosin! It is so good to see him again. He shares information that has been gleaned from the black dragon mask we recovered. There are 5 masks, 1 per color, and all 5 are need for the ritual to raise Tiamat. The Harpers have been contacted by the Zehentarin who are also investigating the dragon cult. The white dragon mask has been stolen from a dwarf named Verum. Verum wants it back and doesn’t want to get in trouble for losing it. He’s taken a small group and is heading to divination site to find it. Leosin wants us to capture Verum for interrogation. They don’t know where the divination site is but they do know Verum is headed to the Borskine bridge in the northeast. We are to leave in the morning.
We spend the rest of the day dividing up the dragon hoard – Mordaxis, myself, Fang and Lorea each get 250 sp and 2750 gp. Time is spent shopping for magic items but they’re too expensive. Items like boots of striding and cloaks of the bat were considered. A bag of holding is only 500gp. All this money is weighing on my conscience I must give most of it to the order.
We wake in the morning to horses loaded with 6 days of rations. We head to the bridge and from there we’ll need to track him. We head north for a day and stay at an inn at a crossroads. Tomorrow we head east to the bridge. Cunning Stor talks with the innfolk and finds out information. I wish I could talk with people in such ways. A barmaid, I did not like how she looked at Stor so long, complained that rude dwarf in purple came through 2 or 3 days prior.
We get up and head east. The land becomes more wild. After a days journey we are at a travelers way stop with camping areas. We pitch camp for the night and set watches. As we examine the area we find a scrap of purple robe. They were here! In the middle of the night on Fang’s watch he hears a twig snap and his orcish vision picks out 6 figures encircling the camp. He raises the alarm. I am in a deep sleep dreaming of … well … I will not say. But do not wish to waken. Fang roars a mighty challenge which startles the figures. They did not expect that! Mordaxis wields his mighty staff and a fireball explodes revealing our foes and badly burning 3 of them. 5 are strange blueish humanoids with small wings and fangs. The group is led by a half blue dragon who looks much like one we felled previously. Clearly it cannot be. The strange blue men wield blue orbs that they use to breathe lightning. The half dragon also breathes lightning but it is a mighty blast. Mordaxis is squarely hit and vanishes! Then from behind a nearby tree Mordaxis lets loose another fireball hitting the half-dragon squarely. The area is burning providing me with better light to see. We are engaging the strange blue creatures. Stor deftly sneaks and lands cunning blows. The half dragon charges Mordaxis and yells that he will not fail again. But he does due to Mardaxis’s flame from the staff. We recover the 5 orbs for the council. We get some more sleep and leave later than planned.
We arrive at the Borskire bridge over the winding water river. There is a large encampment with an inn under a large tent. Mordaxis asks around and Bolo, a female halfling, tells us a dwarf was here asking for a guide to the hills. While he was here a hooded figure attacked the dwarf and the dwarf slew it. It was a lizardfolk from the hills. Everyone likes the dwarf. Nobody likes the lizardfolk. He got a ranger guide to take him to the temple in the hills. He had 6 barbarians with him. We hire Sven the ranger to take us to the temple. It’s a 2 day trek through dangerous lizardfolk lands. I do not like the sound of these lizardfolk.
We leave the next morning with Sven. After the trail ends he continues to guide us based on where he thinks the temple is — he’s not completely sure. After a day we camp at a clear area. There is a bas-relief on a stone worn down from exposure to the elements. It depicts a 6-armed woman. We get up and continue. We stop after a day near 3 very old graves on a low hill. On Mordaxis’ watch he sees some motion by the graves but nothing more.
The next day we get up and go. Sven finds the dwarf’s trail. We enter a box canyon with a strange temple with buildings and statues. In the cliff face to the left is an entrance. In the cliff face are otherworldly carvings of scenes, faces, flying round ships and tentacled monsters rising from the deep, and even dragons are in one scene. Sven will wait for us overnight a distance away but he wants nothing to do with the place. To get to the temple entrance we must cross the remains of a large plaza that has a remnants of a large fountain. Two tall stone statues flank the entrance to the plaza. Of course they come to life as we approach. They say, “You come before Diderous etherwalker. What do you seek?” Fang and Mordaxis say “knowledge” and Stor says “a dwarf in purple.” I am unnerved by these creatures and do not speak. They answer, “he will do that but you must heed him.”
We enter the temple antechamber. Everything looks like new and well-kept. Nothing like the deterioration outside. We pass through an open stone door into a hallway with statues of cloaked wizards. Great, more statues. Mordaxis and Fang hear a whisper and tell us all to avert our eyes from the statues. We do so and head to the end of the hallway. We hear the statues move and feel their gaze upon us. We enter a 40×40 room with a beautiful mosaic floor depicting a knight battling a chimera and a ledge 10’ up surrounds the room. We see a door on the left with “safe” written on it and a pair of double doors in front of us and a small corridor to the right. We enter and the chimera springs to life. A chimera made of tile! Mordaxis goes to the safe door but only sees a room with a well behind it. We battle the chimera which breathes real fire but it is too slow to burn me. It eventually falls to the floor as broken tile. Stor bravely enters the safe room and I join him. In the room is a small alcove and basin with a lever. The lever opens a drain at the bottom of the basin. The well has a bucket of course.
The double copper doors are bowing towards us and have etchings of wizards hunched over a pool with one looming over them with hands raised. We head down the hallway to the right. It slopes down. Fang notices a pressure plate in the floor which we avoid. We enter a trapezoidal room with rich tapestries on the walls. The room is illuminated by sunlight from a light tube. Mordaxis and Fang receive another whisper, about humility. We move to the end of the room and try to open the double doors. They only move an inch and then we hear noises behind us. 6 slow figures emerge from behind the tapestries clad in rags and moaning. Their touch fills me with fear and I cannot move. I center myself and am no longer afraid but I still cannot move. They are slow but dangerous. Mordaxis reads one of the scrolls we acquired from the white dragon and a brilliant lightning bolt leaps towards one of the creatures and arcs to three others hurting them greatly. We are then able to reduce them to dust.
This is a good approximation of Mordaxis tonight. We viewed this on the TV and agreed this sums it up. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aZJZK6rzjns