Dragon Shadow

New Blood & The Sarlydia Takes Flight

The party awoke early the next morning to the sound of commerce, “The Winking Skeever” being situated only a few blocks away from the central market. The calls of the merchants and farmers and craftsmen echoed through the streets and alleys created by the stone-walled buildings. They rose and made their way to the small dock run by the Lyrandars which supplied the floating towers of Arcanix. The trip lasted about an hour before the small airship made port.

The island was relatively small, and most of it was taken up by the massive single tower which dominated the view from the dock. Upon approaching the towers, two massive wooden doors suddenly began to open. This was quite fortunate, as they were so large that they probably could not be opened by anything other than magical means. The party stepped into the cavernous foyer filled with massive pillars stretching nearly out of sight to the arches which supported the ceiling as well as the entire tower above. The pillars were evenly spaced through the entire room with the exception of two wide walkways which intersected in the center of the room. The first walkway leading back to the main entrance which the party had just entered, and the second running perpendicular to it, crossing the room in the exact center leading into darkness. As they stepped forward, torches on the pillars instantly ignited in series, eventually illuminating the entire room. Once lit, the party began to hear noises coming from one of the stairwells. Just as the sounds became recognizable as armored footsteps and accompanying voices, they were pushed aside by the Lyrandars unloading the supplies from the airship. The looks of mild irritation were not subtle on the faces of these half-elves. Perhaps they had given assistance expecting some help in the unloading of the supplies in return—or perhaps they were just unhappy with the four blocking the way to their destination. Amidst the clamour, they did not hear a guard approach to address them. Apparently standing around in this situation was cause for investigation.

When the guard inquired about thier business, the party explained the circumstances, and after some “encouragement” they were taken to see Anithea. The guard led them to a door near the top of the tower before leaving them alone. A loud knock demonstrated that the door was not latched and it swung open slightly. With no answer, they gently stepped into the disoriently large room full of tables, bookshelves, cabinets, and a robed woman, clearly of distinction, bent over a small drawer looking intently for something. She did not seem to ackowledge the party’s presence and so Baeldan called out. Her head popped up, but her body remained fully engaged in it’s task.

“Who let you in here?” she demanded in a curiously masculine voice.

“Uh, your guards—we made a persuasive argument” Baeldan was quick to reply.

Oinid added, “I think it was Joe.”

Anithea stood up and walked towards the party leaving the drawer open as she stepped away. “I hate that Joe…” she said, shaking her head in quiet disdain.

Amalis nudged Baeldan and quietly reminded him about the scroll which was the entire reason for travelling to Arcanix to see Anithea in the first place. He took out the scroll and handed it to Anithea.

“What do you want me to do with this?” she said in response.

“We were told to give it to you. We thought you could help us decipher it.” Amalis said.

“What are you going to give me in return?” Anithea inquired with her still unsettlingly masculine timbre.

“A favor…?” Oinid speculated.

Baeldan, thinking this was a brilliant idea, seconded the motion, adding “We’ll owe you one…no, wait, we’ll owe you two.” A smile beamed across his face as he waited for her reply.

She stared intently at him for a long moment, him still smiling, before Oinid chimed in.

“What my friend here is trying to say is…” was all he got out before he began stammering like an idiot.

Anithea, not entirely sure what to make of the two, turned to Amalis and said “Give me the scroll…”

She opens the scroll, and reads for awhile before telling the group that she has read it, but does not believe the contents. She continues to explain that the scoll contains the locations of various heavily enchanted items, the likes of which do not exist anywhere in Khorvaire.

“These relics have been gone for far too long and if they do indeed still exist, they are most likely guarded by dark evils. Attempting to procure them would most certainly end in your death.”

She translates the scroll to another piece of paper and hands it to Amalis. She warns the group one last time before they take their leave. They make their way down the hall towards the staircase which would lead them back to the first floor, when they were stopped by a young woman meditating in their path.

“You know I am entitled to that scroll just as much as you are.” She said to the party as they tried to walk past her.

The party was stopped in their tracks.

“Who are you?” Amalis fired back.

“My name is Aliatra, and I am just like you. I know you and you should know me too.”

“But we don’t…” Amalis replied, still a bit stunned by this girl’s bluntness.

“So maybe you can help us with that?” Baeldan chimed in.

“I too was guided by the great and glorious Wehennan, he gifted me with a rune on my body and a quest in my soul. And a power to be strong when life is challenging. He showed me the way.”

“What did you say your name was again?” Oinid finally stammered out.

“Aliatra. Aliatra Shanti.” She replied candidly.

The party all spoke up at once asking to see her mark, and she unwrapped a cloth covering her hand and showed that she bore the mark of Quothian.

The party turned and stepped to the side while the spoke quietly to one another about the extent to which they should trust this seemingly very knowledgeable, and spunky young monk. They decided to bring her back to the Winking Skeever to sit her down and talk in private about their plans and to find out more about her.

When they had returned to the tavern and settled in their room, Aliatra began relaying the tale of how she had been the recipient of the Dragon Dreams for her entire life. It wasn’t until recently, though that Wehennan actually spoke to her and asked her to join the quest. She told the story of her dragonmark, which was identical to what the party had experienced. He then guided her to the tower in Arcanix and had her wait for the party’s arrival. Her story was well received and the party’s trust began to take root. During her tale, she mentioned her dedication to the goddess Dol Arrah, the goddess of honor and sacrifice.

“Speaking of sacrifice,” Amalis interjected, “what can you bring to the table?”

“Can I trust that you are all as committed to the dragon as I am?” Aliatra asked.

“Yeah, we are pretty invested at this point…” Oinid remarked, smartly.

“And can I ask that you will trust that I will join you in this effort?”

Amalis spoke out and replied that while was willing to trust Aliatra to an extent, she by no means had the same trust for her as she did for the other members of the party. Aliatra agreed and with that she showed her true form. The muscles in her face contorted, and her skin and hair began to shift and change color. The entire transformation took only a moment, but the result was drastic. Before them now stood a grey skinned, white haired young girl of the same stature and demeanor. Aliatra was a changeling. Oinid reeled and paced for a moment before running out the door, slamming it behind him. The others, being already stunned by Aliatra’s display, were now doubly confused by Oinid’s dramatic exit.

Baeldan and Etta remained in the room with Aliatra while Amalis followed after Oinid. She found him at the bar an empty pint glass sitting already sitting in front of him. She implored him to tell her what was going on, but his silence was immutable. She returned upstairs and explained the problem to the others before Baeldan proceeded down to talk to him. When Baeldan found Oinid at the bar, he had another 2 pints empty in front of him. After a bit of prying and another pint, Baeldan was able to get Oinid to talk. What he heard was Oinid’s story of betrayal by his family and eventually a changeling he knew as Alana before he discovered that she had been deceiving him for over a year.

With that, Baeldan returned upstairs to relay the information he had discovered. After some debate, and a few more pints, Amalis eventually convinced Oinid to return to the room, but only after they sent Aliatra away. They would meet her in the morning, and though Oinid’s distrust of her would continue, he vowed that he would not attack her provided he never had to witness her change form.

In the morning, the party met Banithor before heading into the forest where they met Aliatra on the way to the underground cave where the Sarlydia was being stored. Travel to the cave took the remainder of the day and they made camp a few miles where they had buried the chest for safe keeping.

When the awoke the next morning, the party made quick work of retracing their steps to find where they had buried the chest only to find an empty hole where it had been. Confused and distraught, they hurried into the cave to find the other chests and the secret door securely closed with no evidence of tampering. They returned to the location where the chest had been buried and scoured the area for clues as to who or what had taken the chest. Their eyes turned toward the dirt and trees and they slowly and wordlessly began fanning out looking for any trace left by the thief.

As they looked a disembodied voice called out to them mocking their tracking skills. Someone was there, and they were not revealing their presence. Baeldan eventually called out to the individual to show himself. At his request, a figure seemed to seperate from one of the trees several yards from the hole, his skin and clothing had been perfectly camoflouged with the bark of the tree. As the disguise faded, the group could see that the voice was coming from a young half-orc man. He openly mocked the technique used to hide the chest, and indicated that after he had removed it from its hidden location, he had visited the Sarlydia. He spoke of a vision he had in which a man in silver robes instructed him to this place. At that moment the half-orc collapsed and as began to move as if in a deep dream-like state. His eyes and fingers twitched, though the rest of his body remain still and calm. The others watched as, while sleeping, the mark of Quothian began seemed to grow out of his arm to take the shape similar to their own. He awoke suddenly after only a few minutes and immediately began recounting what had transpired in his dream.

It was clear that the time spent in the dream far exceeded the time the others spent watching. His story matched theirs—the pedestal, the figures and the silver dragon called Wehennan. Clearly there was a greater purpose taking shape before their eyes. He led the party to where he had hidden the chest; only a few dozen yards from it’s original location, but well hidden, and removed it. They proceeded to the underground cave and opened the secret door with the missing chest now in place. As the door opened, Banithor’s eyes opened wide – he had seen airships in his day, but nothing as beautiful as this. They boarded the ship and made their way to the central room where the dragonshards were held suspended in their chambers. They replaced the cracked shard of Eberron with the shard that Banithor had brought. Immediately the ship exploded with light. The wood creaked and moaned and through the noise, a voice began to speak.

It slowly dictated directions to a man named Tarvax who had been keeping the scroll of protection sealing the cave from intruders. After receiving careful directions, the party set out leaving Etta, Oinid and Banithor with the ship. Tarvax lived only about a days travel from the cave and the group made good time. They soon came upon a small hut made of wood and mud, with a straw thatched roof. The door knocker was a carved peice of oak in the shape of the mark of Lyrandar. Amalis knocked, and an old waifish half-elf cracked open the door and stuck his head out. The party relayed the information that they had been given by Cid and Tarvax’s eyes lit up. He drew a map to his storage cave only about an hours walk from the hut and then hurriedly closed the door. Left with only a hand drawn map and some loose instruction an arguement broke out between Amalis and Ruulik as to who should guide them to the cave. Amalis, having the map in hand went off in one direction and the party followed. After an hour, the realization came to everyone that they had been travelling in the wrong direction. Ruulik took the map and set off in a different direction. Eventually, they realized that they were no closer. Aliatra finally pointed out, as Ruulik and Amalis continued to bicker, that they had infact been circling the cave the entire time.

As they advance toward the entrance, however, they see that it is guarded by four bugbears. They quickly dispatched them. They rummaged through the miscellanea stored in the cave until they cound the scroll containing the spell to open the cavern. They hurried back to the cave and located the gold plate directly above the center of the massive cavern below. Baeldan read the scroll and invoked the spell. Suddenly lightning crackled above and began striking randomly in the area before finally striking the plate. The earth shook and began to crack open as large chunks of rock broke off from the forest floor and began hurling out in all directions nearly hitting the party members as the fled. As the magical maelstrom settles, the party approaches the gaping hole in the earth revealing the Sarlydia below. Seeing that the hole is clearly large enough for the ship to exit the cavern, everyone returns through the underground cave and boards the ship.

They party barely boards the ship before they hear the creaking, moaning voice of Cid say “Let us be off!”

Sarlydia shakes and rumbles as it loosens the grip of the mounts it has rested in for all those years. It begins to rise at a steadily increasing pace before it clears the entrance to the cavern, at which point everyone rushes to the deck to see the sun above. Cid asks to drop the sails, and when they have dropped, he fills them with wind. The Sarlydia has taken flight.

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Dungeons to Sarlydia

With the Hydra defeated and the room of switches concurred you enter into a simple hall 10 feet wide and 100 feet long.
• 2x EL4 Lightning traps at the end, proximity 50% trigger, 70% to detect
• DC28, 14 SAVE, 5d6 (half) (One Time)
• Door is trapped as well: DC27, 13 SAVE, 1d4+3 (half) (Resetting) to 10 ft radius
“You open the door to a welcoming warm light that came on when you entered. You see a treasure room in front of you. There is 3 chests neatly arranged on each side and 2 pillars on each side of what appears to be an Ornate Cyrian Rug. Beautiful artwork hangs on the walls and a mound of gold sits at the end of the hall. The walls look polished stone and are huge seamless dark gray slab. The chests, some open and some easily opened, are all full of gold. You guess there must be at least 5000 gold scattered about.”
• The room is a puzzle
• Each chest will be inscribed with an Heir of Galifar
• When opened the chests will highlight the names
• They must be opened in order of their reverse birth order DC15 mind/know check
• The last chest that must be opened is under the pile of gold and has {Galifar ir’Wynarn}
• Detect illusion will show the walls to be merely simple stone and the gold as copper, the rug is just a plain rug, and art just canvas – this will NOT change the chests or puzzle
Once you enter the room you will see it, in all its glory… the Sarlydia!
“You enter the huge semi-circle cavern—you see it, the great Sarlydia! It is far larger than you could image, far more beautiful, and far odder than any other airship you’d seen. It had no elemental postings to power it. Obviously these were broken in the crash—but otherwise the ship is in immaculate condition. The iron railing guides you around the outside of the semi-circle ravine. You stand at the loading area of the ship. You gaze up to see the ceiling is solid stone, down below you stone as well..”
Role Play a bit, when the party gets anxious—
“Your mark tingles and you notice it has changed to Lyrander—it wasn’t like that when you first approached the ship.”
Role play, let the players go where they wish
‘A man enters the way you came in, it is Tarvax walking very studiously. ‘
Role play a bit
“Thank you for clearing the way back to my precious Sarlydia, call me Cid.. I created Sarlydia.. here in the cave. I do apologize for the trouble I have put you through, you see—I had a friend lock this place up about 2 years ago just before the war ended… and… the poor guy got himself eaten by that hydra he let in. I would have told him that was drastic measures, but he wouldn’t have listened anyway. I needed someone I could trust that would try to steal my ship outright… you came along, new Lyrander’s and such I figured you would believe my tale about her. I was surprised you went with it so easily. I had made these plans over a year ago and started telling my tale, biding my time… and then I saw you, anxious, eager, wanting praise.
I am Cid d’Lyrander, one of the few that bear the Syberys mark.”
He walks past you onto his ship and welcomes you aboard. He shows you the various rooms and decorations:
• Dining Hall
• Lavish 10 Suites each with full bed, chests, book shelves, table, and bathing area
• Crew bunks with 15 spots
• Storage room big enough for thousands of gold worth of provisions
• Ale Room
• 4x’s Cannon rooms
• A treasure room, which is locked and empty
Cid shows you one last room, at the very center of the ship… it is a 10×20 ft room with three pedestals from floor to ceiling. All but one has a dragonshard in it, one of Syberys, one of Khyber, and one missing. Cid takes an Eberron shard out of his lavish Lyrander coat and places it in the last pedestal.
The party gets curious about the lack of elementals, nowhere in his ship was there any elemental power. Also, where is the steering house?
“It is time. Follow me. This ship is one of a kind, a true masterpiece 20 years in the making… it needs no elementals! This is my masterpiece..”
He guides you to the last room he has yet to show you, inside there is a glass tube, similar to the elemental tubes of the floating fortress. You notice three tubes, each colored that of the dragon shards enters the top of the tube. He enters and says.
“My work.. is finally done. Sarlydia, the greatest of all ships, is soon to be complete. Please take care of us. You will be legendary for this, feel free to take credit for its creation. I must go now. My sacrifice and Syberys mark will make this ship simply come alive! I will be here with you, the permanent Captain of this vessel. You will be my guardians and I will live eternally so long as Sarlydia reins the sky!”
He pauses and takes one deep breathe and shut the glass. He casts a long enchantment and the glass seals itself. The ship begins to shake and Cid begins to draw energy from the three shards. He lights up in a burst and his Syberys mark beams a brilliance you cannot image. Cid’s whole body becomes light and is absorbed by the walls around you. The ship has swallow his light and nothing remains in the tube. Nothing else happens. It is anticlimactic and disappointing at best. Surely the ship should be animated! Surely that is what his intentions were!
Role play a bit.
You notice the light from the Eberron Shard fade out. Upon investigating you see the Eberron Shard he placed in the pedestal was cracked in half.
Role play, the party should remember getting the dragonshard from the cabin.
A return trip to Banithor—play out the daily travel. Banithor decides he would like to see this Sarlydia and would want to know his dragonshard is going to a real purpose. He comes with you. Play out the travel yet again back.

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The Way to Sarlydia

Surely the adventures will seek out rumors and tales of the Sarlydia.
• “She was the greatest ship to every fly the skies.”
• “Many died a tragic death, some say by the beast of 10 heads!”
• “Surely there must be nothing left after that crash.”
• “Floating Islands over the Eldeen Bay? Surely you mean Arcanix and Lake Galifar”
• “Legend has it that it burrowed itself into the shallow waters of the coast”
• “No one survived that terrible tragedy”
The party will soon realize they must find Tarvax and ask him, but in trying to find him they will be distracted by Thugs who wish their gold.
4x AC 15 HP 30 – 1d8+7/2
Tarvax stays and assists you fight the thugs off. Upon asking he insists that the story took place in the Eldeen Bay: “Surely it happened in the Eldeen Bay, but it was odd that the mountain was just floating there. Maybe that is what you should look for.” If asked about Arcanix: “Yes, that would make sense in a way, I woke up in Arcanix! I wondered how I got so far from the crash. Everyone says the Eldeen Bay though. I mean the man woke up in Arcanix.. “
“OK OK it was me, I just don’t like being associated with the ship, it has brought ill fortune to me.”
The party will ask him to fess up.
“It is surely in Arcanix, I didn’t want you to seek it out, to save you from its curse. I have had terrifying dreams since that day, I have been stabbed, beat, cutdown, and killed in unimaginable ways. I have been shanked in the heart, had my head cut off while standing, and other various horrors. I wish that upon no one! But I stand by my word that if you were to find the ship you would most definitely gain rank among us!”
When successfully interrogated for information you will discover:
“I do know in fact the location and the means to get to it. It didn’t crash in the ocean! It crashed on the land in Arcanix… what happened to it after that I am not sure as I was hit by debri as I fell. I woke in an Arcanix chapel being mended by clerics. I believe they followed Kulkoran. I ran from the place as soon as I was mended and have been haunted by it since.”
Who helped him? “Rinnar was his name.”
Travel to Rinnar in Arcanix (everyone else in Arcanix will be away on business)
Rinnar “Yes, there was a mysterious mage that came in here some years ago, he told a tale of a great and marvelous ship wreck. He had walking in bleeding so we mended him. One morning we awoke and he was gone. He left a key and a map hidden under the floor of his bedside.”
Rinnar gives him these, it is a map to what appears the possible crash site 1 days travel away under a floating island. You search for a day for clues (roll on travel chart) and finally stumble on stairs covered by shrubs and foliage.

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The Story of Sarlydia

The Aching Tooth Inn and Tavern was quiet that night. The members of the party would sleep well in the familiar beds of their usual suite. The room had a single double-hinged paned-glass window which was open to the cool night air as they slept.

The sun seemed to hang just below horizon for longer than usual the following morning, as if it were allowing the party a few additional minutes of rest before undertaking thier journey. The morning of the next day was spent preparing supplies and gear for the walk to Flamekeep. Banithor had provided papers which would allow the crossing into Thrane without any issues the night before.

With gear and supplies acquired, they set off. They decided to cross the river into Thrane near Arythawn Keep and travel to Aruldusk along the bank of The Brey through The Thornwood. There they would pick up the military road which crossed the Thrane River north of Sigilstar where it met with the main trade route used by merchants and travelers. From there they would continue north into Sharavacion and on to Traelyn, following the Thrane River as it flowed into Scions Sound. As they approached the crossing, they could see the burnt remnants of the wooden bridge used by the soldiers of the keep to cross the river. The river was not wide here, and it was shallow enough to cross, but the rocky terrain was slick with algae and the water moved swiftly, which made crossing a treacherous endeavor. The party could not afford to lose a day of travel at the expense of crossing the river at a more convenient location, so resigned to task, they prepared the supplies. The water was nearly shoulder deep on the dwarf, luckily, Amalis was small and light enough to ride on Baeldan’s shoulders as he waded confidently through the rushing water. Etta was first to cross, moving nimbly through the water, followed by Baeldan and Amalis. Oinid, though was having difficulty moving through the rapids. He placed his steps in the rocky riverbed as carefully as possible, but when he had neared the opposite bank, his concentration lapsed for a moment and he nearly fell backwards into the river. He stepped back quickly to catch himself and as he did, he knocked his boot against one of the protruding rocks. The force of the water pushed it from his foot and carried it downstream. He regained his footing, bare toes and all, and took the last few paces to climb out of the river.

After taking a short time to dry and change out of wet clothes, the party continued on towards Aruldusk. A few miles after passing the ruins near The Thornwood, night fell and the company made camp on the bank of Scions Sound just south of the city. Morning broke and the party continued into the city. When they arrived in Aruldusk, the sunlight had begun to dip below the Blackcaps to the west, casting half of the city into the shadow of dusk. There was an inexplicable feeling of gloom that had penetrated the city which was worn on the faces of everyone they encountered that day. The party was reluctant to stay in the city overnight, though there was even less inclination to continue traveling with the sun so low in the sky. They bartered for a room at small tavern near the city limits as far from the water as possible and took to bed for a night of restless sleep. Their dreams were tormented that night by images of Lilith and her father, the tall man they had seen in the White Realm. She boasted of their plans and of their power in a twisted, nightmarish, cacophony of visions.

Etta, Baeldan, Amalis and Oinid were up early the next morning and they set out before sunrise, anxious to leave the images from the previous night behind them. They had a long day of grueling travel ahead of them if they were to get to Sharavacion before night fall. Thankfully the heat was kept at bay by a strong, cool breeze blowing across the plains from Lake Galifar. They crossed the Thrane River at Maliah’s Bridge and made it to their destination in good time. They were surprised by the feeling of hospitality they received in this small town, and in good spirits they drank and sang with the locals at the tavern before turning in for the night.

The next day, they set off a bit late, and a bit hung-over. They pressed on as steadily as they could before mid-day, when the sun overhead beat down upon them with waves of heat. They had barely made it to the edge of the sound before they decided to stop and rest near where Scions Sound emptied into the Thrane River. Amalis spotted a small group of shade trees near the bank where the party could rest from the heat. As they approached, they could see that a small water craft had run aground near where they had taken shelter from the heat of the day. Etta immediately went to investigate and by the time the rest of the party joined her, she had assessed the damage to the craft to be mostly superficial, save for a few minor repairs. It did not take long to decide that water travel would be much preferred to their current method, and they agreed to try to repair the vessel. Oinid, under the instruction of Etta, attempted to repair the worst of the real damage and was moderately successful; at least successful enough that Etta deemed the craft sea-worthy. The party then loaded their supplies before maneuvering the craft out into the open water. It was a strenuous task, but relief came when Etta took to steering the vessel and instructed the rest of the group to relax for a few hours. The craft was a small single-masted Cog-style vessel, about 40’ in length and of good condition. The sail had been damaged and had several areas which needed to be patched, but it was intact and still provided enough thrust to steer the craft effectively. Its flat bottom design allowed it to manuever quite well in the shallow water and its high sides would allow it to fair well enough in good weather on the ocean. The galley had been relieved of any food, either by bandits or animals, and there was nothing of value on the vessel save for the compass and a few tidal maps of the area. Whoever had owned the boat previously had abandoned it with no intention of returning, that was clear.

The serendipitous discovery of their new-found transport had them docking in the port at Flamekeep that evening, nearly two full days ahead of schedule. They spoke with the dock master and paid him upfront for 3 days docking fees before heading into town to find lodging for their stay in the city. They came to a large, lavish inn and tavern called “The Oinking Pig” and entered to inquire about vacancy. The door opened into a large room filled with round tables broken up by massive wooden pillars. The most interesting part of the room though was the fireplace, which seemed to have been carved from a single giant slab of white and grey marble. The fire within brightened the whole room and the smell of food, beer and sweat filled the nostrils. To their right was the bar which ran along nearly the entire length of the room and behind it was a massive bearded man laughing heartily with one of his many, clearly intoxicated, patrons. Near the center of the room sitting alone at one of the large round tables was a waifish half-elf playing some sort of dice game. As he tossed the dice across the surface of the table, they could clearly see that he bore the Mark of Storm down his left forearm. A slight tingling sensation passed over each member of the group, focused on the area where they had been marked themselves. Etta checked her mark and saw that it had begun to shift in its design. It had shifted to resemble that of the mark born by this half-elf. Oinid and Baeldan quickly moved towards one of the tables near the man and they sat with their backs towards the man. they were followed closely by Amalis and Etta where were both paying very close attention to Etta’s mark as they passed near him. When they sat they could see that the mark had taken the form of that of the Mark of Storm. In fact it was indistinguishable from that of the real thing. Anxious for information regarding the House Lyrandar, the group calmly moved from the table nearby, to join the half-elf with the dice. Baeldan tried to break the ice by inquiring if the man was interested in purchasing their boat, but before he had finished asking the question, the small half-breed interjected enthusiastically.

“So you seek information about House Lyrander? Possibly a quest? You look the adventuring type, but might you delve into a game of Danger and Deeds with me? Surely you may learn a thing or two about the mysterious Sarlydia. She’s a beauty, one of the best ever made during the war… You will have to play the game to learn more.”

“Well you see you take these here characters, they go by the names: Pine, Till, Fin, and Minda. You will be playing these here characters as I regale the tale for which you will want to seek. Take this here dice, it will guide you along the way.”

“If you do not wish you to play you may have a hard time finding another quest to partake in.”

“It was a stormy night on deck of the Sarlydia. Cold wind snapped at the cheek and hard rain pelted your body. You have forgotten the year, the month, or the day. This war has taken a toll out of you and your friends. Minda has not eaten, Fin is cut, bruised and battered, Pine has lost his precious talking wand, and Till is still wondering how his precious God Kolkuran has let all this happen.
The ship you fly on is opulent and has intricate detail all along its massive hull. The Sarlydia was the great pride of Lyrander, the uncrashable ship they say. The airship cannot climb any higher. The weather is unrelenting. Your airsickness grows with every shudder of turbulence.”

Playing along with the game, the members of the group humor the ridiculous situation and tell Tarvax that they will go inside to get a break from the weather.

“The ship is gorgeous within, warm wood colors, gold banisters, trim and ornate carpets. You walk uneasy down the halls and stairs and travel amongst the many levels. You find the galley where there are many passing the time. You ask to site with a studious looking individual holding a deck of cards, he asks you if you would like to play a round.”

“Here is how you play” says Tarvax, acting as the studious looking individual. ‘Surely you have nothing better to do that play a game with me” Tarvax begins to deal out the cards and says “The game is called inn fighting you see, you play with these here characters, and these here dice”

Tarvax takes out a very old deck of cards, many of which have severe water damage and places them on the table in front of the party.
Spill the game bits onto the table and explain how to play, play inn fighting for a few rounds until the players are really into it (time pending) then slam on the table to startle them, do this a few times and read..

“The men and women in the galley all look startled and frightened, some are gathering their gear and others simple do not know what to make of it. Come on we must get to the deck quickly, bring your weapons we are under attack. You check the bow I will help them at the stern”

The party were now simulating a battle with a dreaded 5-Headed Hydra (AC16 | 6 bites 8 1d103 | 66HP). Tarvax looked pleased indeed as the party muttled through the skills and abilities of their pretend characters in an attempt to defeat the beast. Two of the characters had been knocked unconscious and Oinid, in attempt to heroically save them, used a creative action, running past the creature trying to draw its attention before tossing a Cure Light Wounds potion over the back of the beast to the character Etta was playing. The far head of the beast, however, saw through the ruse and caught the potion in mid-flight, restoring 8 hit-points of damage to itself. The Hydra quickly dispatched the other characters before Tarvax interceded.

“The ship suddenly tilts heavily to port to avoid a massive floating island that had come through the clouds. The ship looked to be clear of it”
“The impact knocked you down if you did not have steady feet. I nearly fell … I mean the studious man nearly fell off the ship. The handsome and intelligent fellow had the wherewithal to cast feather fall on himself. The ship quickly pitched into a dive. The uncrashable ship was about to crash! I lept off the ship.. I mean the man leapt off the ship to save himself.”
“You take 1d100 +58 damage as the ship plunged into the water of the Eldeen Bay. How it did not shatter on impact I will…. I mean the handsome man who has his deck of cards, will never know.”

The party looked at Tarvax, and then looked at each other. They had discerned by now that the man was heavily intoxicated and that he was clearly hiding information about this airship called “Sarlydia.” When they inquired though, Tarvax simple said “No no I am not him. I hear there is a legend that the ship is still intact at the bottom of the Eldeen Bay. I have heard tales that if you are in the right place, at the right moon of the crash, you can see the light of the ship below. None have found it though. Unfortunately none survived. Surely if you could find the ship and find a way to get it to the surface you would gain great aptitude among us… Wait, what was your name again? I have said too much.” He takes a drink of ale. “Oh, I see your mark, you are House Lyrander! Good thing too, that is a secret I was not supposed to tell outsiders… it’s a good thing too. I’m glad I survived the crash, it is a shame I got hit with debris, I may… I mean the man may have had a better idea of where to look!”
The odd fellow falls over passed out and drooling onto him dice and books. His cards readily available for the taking. They are marked with the signet of Lyrander and the shipname “Sarlydia.”

View
House Quothian

The five had found themselves in the pool of water exactly as they had entered it what seemed like days ago. The water had a chill which penetrated them to the bone. Wehennen had given his final words and flown off, and now they sat quietly by a fire, warming and feeding themselves as a terrible hunger had overcome them. The area had not seen much rain and the dry wood burned hot with little smoke. Baeldan spoke, at first half to himself without realizing, but the others heard him and the question of what to do next was on everyone’s mind. Oinid was adamant that they must speak to Banithor, whom he had assumed was the final figure from the platform under the Quothian mark. There was talk of war and peace, of allies and rivals, and of giants, there was much talk of giants. The fire burned through the night the heat seeming to fuel the conversation. No one slept that night. When dawn broke, the meager camp was broken as no tents were pitched, and the members of the newly formed House d’Quothian made their way east to Vathirond.

What would have been a three day journey was interrupted by small military platoon. The group was held for interrogation for some unknown reason for two days before being released. Clearly there is already unrest in the nation that has been held tightly by the military regime of Breland. The journey took the group near Dragon’s Crown, where Big Bara of Argonth had asked them to clear out a group of Gnolls which had taken up residence there. Being not too far off their path, the group, in good faith, kept their promise to Big Bara and removed the Gnolls infesting Dragons Crown. Upon reaching Vathirond The party called on Banithor at his manor near the west end of town. Banithor’s hospitality was gracious as usual. Upon receiving his guests, he asked that food and wine be prepared and laid out in the dining room. Once settled, it did not take long before the conversation became very pointed. One topic was weighing heavily on the minds of everyone at the table. Baeldan broached the subject by asking Banithor if he had received any new visions or dreams. Banithor’s eyes became intense and his gaze, distant. He spoke of the White Realm quite vividly, citing that he had conversed with a dog in his time there, who relayed to him a frightening prophecy of two previously unknown dragons. One who sought peace and the other who sought war. He then described a sort of ritual in which he stepped onto an Altar in a ruined place. In his vision had been marked, and when he awoke, the mark remained. Since then he had been expecting the party to return.

After hearing Banithor’s tale, the party then recounted their journey into the White Realm, starting with their encounter with Wehennen, and ending with the description of the out-of-body experience as they watched the world being unmade. Banithor’s gaze never wavered as he listen intently to the story being recounted.

A long deliberation ensued about what course to take. It was finally decided, though, that House d’Quothian must make itself known to the other houses. It must gain favor among the least corrupted houses and garner alliances where it is able. The old man from the White Realm had mentioned seeing Anithea of Arcanix to obtain help in opening the mysterious scroll that he had given Baeldan in exchange for the water he provided. Arcanix being in Aundair, the party decided that firstly they would visit the House Lyrandar while enroute to Arcanix and visit the enclave at Flamekeep in Thrane just before crossing the border into Aundair.

View
Dragon Marked

“You see a man in silver robes standing atop the highest tower in sight. He has his arms out as if he were going to jump. You see him bend his knees and leap off the edge. 45 degrees into his fall he stops, and floats in the air. You see a flash of huge silver wings erupt from his back, he looks right at you, then falls to his death. Investigating the obvious location of his falls reveals nothing, you see him again on another tower. This time his is starring at you with his arms crossed, after a bit of time he does a back flip off the side of the tower. Investigating that spot reveals the same lack of body. You see him sitting on a ledge looking rather relaxed, he gestures for you to go his way. Upon reaching the top of the tower, he will jump. Again, no body.”

“At the top of the tower you will have a perfect view of the city. The door by which you came in will be locked and you will be stuck there momentarily to think yourself a fool for not checking to make sure it couldnt lock, or a fool to believe it wouldnt. The wind begins to blow and on it you can hear a voice. ‘Stand still in two groups, put up your hands.’ The wind feels good on your face.”

“A figure blocks out the sun momentarily, then it is upon you. A silver blur and you are in his talons. The creature is incredible and in its claws you feel no fear. You know this must be Wehannen. He sets you into a field several miles away and lands just outside of view.”

“Walking towards him reveals the man in silver robes. He introduces himself, “I am Wehannen, I come at great risk to show you what you must see. Follow me.” He walks deep into the woods without much more than a sound. His presence is pure and truthful. He stops at a small pool of water and reverts back to his original self. He bows to you and heats the water with his dragon’s breathe. He tells all of you, “Take off your gear and weapons, you will not need them with me here, enter the pool, it is quite comfortable.””

The party removes their gear and enters the pool of water.

“The dragon blows hot air towards you. The air intoxicates you into a trance.
You see a dirt path curving up a hill, there is white all around you and directly behind you. You cannot see the top of the hill, nor anything off the path. There are spires sparsely around the road of what look like two foot thick freestanding turnip roots. You notice the other party members and yourself are in casual clothing and have no weapons or gear on you.”

The party walks for hours with no change in scenery. Eventually hunger sets in and Amalis digs out a piece of the giant root and takes a bite. Still no changes. Oinid, trying to get a better view out into the blankness, climbs the same giant root and sits down. He sees that the road ahead has changed and the party continues to walk this time they do not loop, but rather reach the top of a large hill. They are met by an old dog who begins to speak as if he had already been in mid-conversation with the party. He tells the story of two dragons, Manikoth and Quothian.

“Manikoth was a great old dragon, red in color and filled with political knowledge among dragons. He was a traditionalist and sought only to oblige prophecy. The dragons are one with the prophecy see, some even say they are the prophecy, as Eberron is our earth and Syberys our sky. Manikoth was a great interpreter of the prophetic symbols of Argonnessen. It was his belief the lesser races would wage continues war on each other to claim land and vengeance; Manikoth strongly believed in the sanctity of leaving them alone- aside from the nudge to get the next chain of prophecy moving. He was one of the 14 Dragons that marked the lesser beings, although he was not aware of this in his life. Upon dying his body became that of just a symbol, like others before him this symbol defined his mark, his purpose and his achievement in the ranks of the dragons.
Quothian was a kin of secrecy, he was part of the Chamber dragons and believed the lesser beings had equal stake in the world and believed he and his chamber could use necessary actions to prevent Manikoth’s prophecy taking place. Quothian was less arrogant about the prophecy and believed he could see more ends than Manikoth. Quothian believed if Manikoth and his followers were to push the lesser beings into waging war that it would end in greater bloodshed, including among the dragons. Quothian believed in sparing the peace in the world and sought to use his chamber to control that peace. Quothian died long before seeing the hundred year war end. He too, like Manikoth, became just a symbol, like the other 13 dragons before him. Wehannen is the son of Quothian, Ixillothen the son of Manikoth."

The party finds this fascinating, because there are only 12 recognized dragonmarks, and one, a 13th that was lost which has remnants in Arcanix. Possibly this is house Quothian or Manikoth?

The dog carries on by himself without further ado and fades into the white abyss.

The party continues along the path while discussing the implications of this “dog’s tale.”

Further along the path and down the hill, they reach ruins. Most of the structure has been hauled away and all that remains is two sets of horizontally arched pillars. They span about 100ft and arc roughly 45 degrees. In the center of the circle is a circular platform. They approach the ruins and begin to see ‘holographic’ images of the two dragons from your dreams.Wehannen on the right, and the other, Ixillothen, the red dragon from your dream, on the left. They fade into an elegant and detailed symbol which then fades to an image of various people. The figures move as if you were watching their lives.

Fascinated by these ghost-like silhouettes, the members of the party advance slowly and lose attention to the others around them. Amalis drifts to the right, while the Kalashtar, Etta and Baeldan move to the left. Oinid pauses for a few minutes near the altar at the center of the ruins before following Amalis to the right side of the room.

Etta immediately recognized Lilith’s visage on the left. Accompanying the little demon were a tall man, a woman in blood-red leather and what appeared to be a giant of Xen’drik. The Kalashtar, quietly as always, stepped away and moved toward the altar, leaving Baeldan and Etta. Baeldan began moving his hand through the images, his body moving through the figures as though they were made of air.

Amalis meanwhile has become deeply fascinated with one of the figures on the right side. She called out that this figure seemed to be mirroring her every action. Oinid pointed out that not only are the movements identical, but the clothing as well. A chill ran down both of their spines. Etta and Baeldan joined them on the right side. Suddenly the Kalashtar leapt onto the altar in the center of the room. At the same time, a fourth figure took shape near the other figures on the right side. The Kalashtar called out. The others turned toward the altar only to see the light from a newly formed dragonmark fade into the skin of the Kalashtars hand.

Amalis looked to the party and confessed that she has born an identical mark to the one that the Kalashtar now bears since birth. It had caused her to be outcast from her original house, that of Jorasco, and she has since been under the care of House d’Tarkanan since. Oinid became enraged and accused her of conspiring with Lilith, citing the incident at the cabin on Lake Brey. She denied the accusation stating that she had never met Lilith and that she had never been a party to the underhanded dealings of the Tarkanan cartel. She pointed to the image of Lilith under the ruined stone on the left side of the platform. The weight of the gesture was not felt though, until she then pointed to the right side of the platform. The eyes of the party turned towards the figures on the right only to see the figure of Amalis pointing straight back at them. She climbed onto the platform and both she and her figure radiated with light. The light shrank and faded into her own existing mark, though not as it was before. It had grown in both size and embellishment, resembling more closely the mark displayed over the heads of the now four figures on the right side of the platform. There is a shared understanding among the party members about the significance of this marking. Wehennen has led them here to claim each of their individual loyalties, if it is freely given. Baeldan next stepped carefully onto the altar, and as before, he was engulfed in light as his mark settled into his skin. Etta continued the parade, leaving only Oinid. He looked around at the group, examining the expectant faces, he approached slowly and placed his hands tentatively on the cleanly-hewn stone. His hesitation was apparent. Thum, unsheathed and hovering behind him, tilted the tip of his blade down toward Oinid’s shoulders and quietly ‘coaxed’ him onto the altar. He too was enveloped in the warming luminescence until it gently faded into his body. He leapt from his elevated position to the floor with a thud, feeling the rush of power coursing through him now as the others did. It ebbed slowly into the feeling of a tiny spark, an ember ready to ignite the flame. The party moved towards the right side of the platform and looked ackowledgingly towards their transparent selves. Each marveled at the mirror image of their bodies performing even the smallest action in tandem as though they were watching themselves perform it as another person.

It was Etta who noticed Thum engaging the smallest of the figures. She watched for a moment as this child-like figure seemed to only turn or tilt from the waist down, not unlike the movements that Thum was performing directly in front of this nameless silhouette. An image flashed in her mind of the story that Banithor had told of the origin of Thum. He had been a Gnomish tinkerer in a former life, probably no bigger than the figure now standing before her, tilting and turning along with the magical blade next to her. By this time, the others had noticed Etta watching Thum and Thum watching the small figure in front of him. Baeldan asked Thum if he recognized the image mirroring his actions. Thum agreed that it did ‘mildly’ resemble him from his former life, though, he stated, he was of a much more ‘handsome’ build. Oinid grabbed Thum at the base of the blade and ‘coaxed’ him over to the altar. He laid him flat across the stone. Giving no resistance to being carried or laid upon the altar, the light soon flashed again. This time though, it appeared as a tight beam striking, unerringly, the base of the blade where Oinid had previously gripped his steely friend. The light moved slowly but deliberatly, laying into the metal leaving curved lines which, when they intersected with the previous etching, would briefly illuminate the entire marking before fading, leaving only the embellishment with a slight radiance. The light then suddenly vanished like liquid being drawn through a straw. Thum slowly raised himself from the altar, remaining parallel to the stone for a moment before tilting into his typical vertical position. Nothing was said, but glances were exchanged. Finally the verbal barrier was broken by Baeldan who prompted the “So, what now?” discussion.

It was clear that Wehennen had chosen these specific individuals for some greater task, that was clear from the series of visions and dreams given to them and to Banithor. They had all been taken into a new house marked by the dragon Quothian, but to what end? They had seemingly come to the end of the path, they had all taken the dragonmark, and yet they remained. Oinid suddenly called out to Wehennen hoping to have the beast return them to their world. Instead, a path opened up between the pillars dividing the two groups of figures. The journey was not over…

“Upon walking the path you see more hills and strange spire turnip roots. Your journey lasts a day and you feed off these roots during that time. You reach the top of a hill where there is a sharp drop off on the other side. Down below you can clearly see the tall man and another man in red robes reminiscent of Wehannen’s silver robes. They are speaking to a giant shaman who seems very interested in what they have to say. You overhear them talking about accepting an alliance between giants and house Manikoth. You hear the giant speak of fulfilling the great deeds of his ancestors. The man in red robes reassures the giant it is their destiny to take Khorvaire. The giant saunters back into his temple and the tall man walks away with the man in red robes. Once in the clear, Ixillothen show his form and flies away with the tall man.”

The party, laid flat on their stomachs at the edge of the cliff, listening as the Kalashtar relayed the discussion being overheard through some extra sense. It was clear that Ixillothen, son of Manikoth, was pursuing the prophecy of war and was using the Giants of Xen’drik towards that end.

“The ground before you suddenly fails you. You fall into the white and land in the middle of a battle field. You see men of Thrane killing elves of Valenar, Giants killing men of Breland and Dwarves of Mror Holds. You see all the races fighting all the races- undead, demons and all else. There is no success in this. Dragons, Giants, and 9 separate nations cannot win supremacy. The battle pauses and you look around and see that each member of the battle is attached to puppet strings and in the sky is the tall man pulling all the strings. The little girl shooting lightning into the fray.

The terrifying image faded from view before the party could do much more than orient themselves. They quickly realized that they were back on the path. As they continued, they quickly came upon an old man who asked for any water the travellers may have with them. Not having anything anything Baeldan conjured enough water to fill the old man’s waterskin. He smiled a gummy smile and pulled out a scroll tucked beneath his coat and handed it to Baeldan. “Seek Anithea of Arcanix. She will help you open the scroll!” He turned and hopped off the path quite sprily and vanished into the sea of white. Having no more business, the party continued down the path. After another several hours of walking, a huge metropolis of white towers came into view. As the group approached it was clear that all of the structures were abandoned, but in good condition. Some had vines growing and cracks from plants but nothing more. The city was beautiful and bright in the sun, it was peaceful here. The party found their way to higher ground to better assertain their position and looking across at the city from one of the towers they realized they were not alone. Suddenly the ground fell out beneath them once again and they began to fall.

They party is scattered from the hard fall and as they orient themselves, they see before them a fearsome warforged. There was not a part of him which did not have some bladed implement protruding from his grotesque form. He was massive, nearly the size of the figure of the Giant they had seen on the platform. While his size and form would give any man pause, it was his eyes, which glowed hot like metal freshly drawn from a furnace, that chilled the blood. It seemed as though he could devour the soul of any man or woman who confronted him with his gaze.
Rushing to their feet, they party found that they had, since their fall, become armed. Weapons of such craftsmanship that the sale of a single one could feed a small town for a year. The sound of their fall, however had drawn the attention of the beast and he had begun to move towards Oinid. Oinid, barreled towards him, swinging his axe heavily. The Warforged deflected it easily and Oinid was thrown back. Etta and Amalis attacked from a distance, firing arrows which clattered through the metallic protrusions uselessly before finally falling to the ground. Baeldan too, rushed in and slammed his mace against the back of the enemy to no avail. The beast turned towards Baeldan his eyes flared as he stepped again towards Oinid. Drawing his bladed hand into the air and striking downwards toward the Dwarf. Oinid dropped his axe and raised his shield with both hands deflecting some of the blow, but he was knocked down from the force of the blow and the tips of the blades had reached over the shield cutting him behind the head and down his back. The monster turned to Baeldan, who was paralyzed with fear. He drew his bladed hand up and swung down with tremendous force onto the unprotected cleric. Death was instant as several appendages fell to the ground, separately. Oinid had regained his footing and ran from the beast while it’s back was turned. Etta fired another shot which was also deflected, though it did not go unnoticed. The beast charged her and she was slain with a single blow. Oinid, enraged, dropped his shield and ran towards the monster. Just before reaching striking distance, he dropped to the ground and slid beneath the legs of the construct, swinging his axe into its belly as he passed under. Again, though, the bladed protrusions deflected the blade and it dropped to the ground. Now behind him, Oinid took his smaller throwing axe and tried to dig it into the back of the monster. It swung around quickly and took Oinid into his bladed claw of a hand and squeezed until the Dwarf hung limp in his hand. Amalis had kept her distance, but now she had drawn her crossbow back again and took aim as the bladed construct bore down on her. She fired a shot which missed entirely and with a single swipe of his bladed claw, Amalis was slain.

The ground then fell out beneath the party and as they fell, they felt life flowing back into them, wounds were healing, and vigor was restored. The fall continued until once again they found themselves on a new battlefield. Before them stood a massive beastly looking human. It stood nearly twelve feet tall with arms the size of tree-limbs and long flowing blonde hair. It charged at the sight of them deflecting all attempts to harm it save one, Amalis being small of stature was able to avoid immediate detection from the giant and fired off a magical projectile striking it in the back of the head. That was the only damage done to the giant before he slaughtered the party handily.

Again though the ground fell out beneath them, life was restored, wounds healed and they found themselves on a new battlefield. Before even reaching their feet, a monstrous screeching howl let out behind them. They all turn to see the red dragon from their nightmares staring them down. Ixillothen reared back flapped his massive wings sending the party tumbling. As he came back to the ground, his belly glowed as he released a massive fireball which sorched the earth around the party. He continued to trample the party until their bodies were unrecognizable.

“Witness in your death the dragons wage war overhead. As you perish the last time you raise back to a 3rd person point of view and see the world collapse in on itself like the arching of a back, eventually you are far enough away to see it is Eberron, reversing his grasp of Khyber. The shards of Syberys become whole again and Khyber reverses his killing of Syberys. The dragons fly reverse in different directions. You see all the legendary events take place forward again and you rush back down to earth. You see a pool of water in a forest and land back into your body. The water around you feels frigged and the dragon stands overlooking you. Ever waiting, ever watching. He nods to you and says, “You have seen what you must do. Seek Anithea, her scroll will give you guidance, I must leave before I am spotted. We may not be in touch for some time unless you are running astray.” With one powerful flap he was in flight and long gone.”

View
Thievery

UNFINISHED DRAFT

The next morning, Amalis rose early while the others slept. She made her way to the medical facilities near the barracks. Since the encounter with the dire rats in the engine room, she suspected, as Etta had guessed, that she had been infected with filth fever and it was not her intention to suffer the ill effects. She implored the medical unit to provide her the remedy for the little coinage she had on her person, but it took intercession from Alain before they would comply. When she returned to the barracks after taking the cure, the others had already begun to stir.

They gathered their things and began to make their way towards the special barracks unit set aside for the warforged company known as Bara’s Breakers, nicknamed “The Break Room.” The Commander of the company was Big Bara, a veteran of The Last War and an imposing female-personality warforged herself. When the group arrived, Big Bara welcomed them and without hesitation, described the series of thefts that had been plaguing the city for the past week and instructed the party to investigate starting in the area of the latest crime—she did not in the course of the instruction give any implication that this was a request.

They made their way across the top level of the city, which was open to the air, and they could see the landscape slowly passing beside them as they walked. The most recent theft took place at a barracks on the other side of the city near one of the blacksmith forges. As they approached their destination, they could see that the barracks was located inside of a larger enclosure which also encompassed the forge, a small armory, and several private officer’s quarters. Coming to the entrance to the barracks, Etta began looking around and tracing her fingers along the wall of the corridor. She turned to the party and pointed out grooves in the stone and wood which appeared to have been made by some sort of animal. The grooves led to the large wooden double doors of the barracks which were clearly locked, but it was apparent that someone or something had tried desperately to unlock them. Amalis wandered down one of the connecting corridors and, after a moment of pause, called out that the grooves continued down the hall in the direction of the forge.

Meanwhile, Baeldan, after struggling with the lock on the door to the barracks, decided to return to Big Bara and retrieve a key to the room. Etta and Amalis decided to follow this new set of marks to see where they led and Oinid remained at the entrance to the barracks to wait for Baeldan’s return. Etta and Amalis followed the corridor, tracing the path of the markings all the way to the entrance to the forge. They knocked, and a rather groggy and unkempt middle-aged man claiming to be the blacksmith opened the door. He told them that he had been visited by a female shifter 2 nights ago who stole from him a master lock-pick set that had been removed from one of the prisoners.

By this time Baeldan had returned from his errand with a key to the barracks, and he and Oinid had subsequently unlocked and entered the room. Etta and Amalis soon rejoined them and the four of them searched the room for any clues the thief may have left behind. Though they found nothing in the room, Amalis and Etta relayed what they had discovered from the blacksmith during the search and it was decided that a trip to the prison was warranted to try to uncover more about these lock-picking tools that were confiscated, and eventually, stolen.

They made their way back across the cityscape towards the warforged barracks to speak with Big Bara. There was a large area in the center of the city with very few buildings that had come to be known as “Stone Park” as it was entirely paved with intricate stone walkways which intersected and bisected, leading to different parts of the city with a large ornate fountain marking the exact center. The fountain was unique in that, instead of the water being contained by a retaining wall around the exterior, the water simply ran off the edge of a deep hole directly in the pavement, sending it cascading down to a series of harmonically tuned metallic platforms suspended within a large dome-walled chamber below before returning to the bowels of the city-ship. The result of this cascading fountain is that the entirety of Stone Park reverberated with a sort of natural ambient music intended to soothe the frayed nerves of soldiers weary from travel or battle.

As the party passed through the center of Stone Park and approached the towering wall of buildings that made up the more defensible front of the mammoth city-ship, they felt a body run between them at a high rate of speed. It effortlessly passed through them and it was several feet away before anyone regained their bearings enough to see that it was the same shifter who had ran through them the day before. She quickly turned and threw a small coin-purse at Oinid’s feet and whispered quietly “Help me…” Etta shot forward and tried to grab the lithe lycanthrope, but her grasp was artfully dodged.

“There’s more where that came from if you help,” she said, as she quickly scanned the area.

Everyone else was in a stunned state and stood as statues watching as the shifter suddenly leapt to the top of a low hanging awning and disappeared over the roof of building before Etta had recovered her stance. Oinid picked up the coin-purse at his feet and quickly garnered that in addition to the original contents of his stolen coin-purse, there was also a large blue garnet within the small leather pouch.

Being unable to track the shifter across the rooftops, the group returned to Big Bara to give her the key to the barracks as well as to disclose the information they had discovered about the theft from the blacksmith. She asked them to continue pursuing the line of investigation and then somewhat rudely turned and began a conversation with another warforged, presumably a member of her company as they began discussing the most recent patrol.

With instruction from Big Bara to dig deeper, the party payed a visit to the prison. Located several levels below near the bow of the city-ship, the prison was relatively small. It’s original intention was to hold and transport prisoners of war, or enemies of the state until they were delivered to a more permanent holding facility in Wroat. Since the war ended, however, the prison sees little more than the occasional poacher or insubordinate soldier. The post is rarely occupied by more than two low-ranking guards and today was no exception. The entrance to the prison was at the intersection of two long doorless corridors, forming a T-shape which pointed towards the center of the vessel. Upon entering, the four could see that the area was actually two separate rooms divided by a large gate with thick steel bars. There was a single guard in each room, and neither seemed to acknowledged the sudden increase in the number of occupants. The first room was considerably more well-dressed than the second, consisting of a small wooden table near the corner and two well-worn wooden chairs.

View
The Floating City of Argonth

UNFINISHED DRAFT

The return to Vathirond was uneventful and the party soon found themselves at the manor of Banithor once again. He had returned from his hunt and seemed in good spirits. Thum was carefully sheathed and having been fed just before entering, he remained (mostly) quiet during the discussion.

Baeldan markedly relayed to Banithor the events that had occurred from the time that the party had left his manor nearly 2 weeks ago, beginning with the most pressing matter on the party’s mind, that of the cabin on Lake Brey and Lilith d’Tarkanan. Banithor took the Dragonshard and expressed his ignorance about the tunnel system beneath his docks. The name Lilith d’Tarkanan was also unfamiliar to him, but in his gratitude for retrieving the Dragonshard he says:

“You are welcome to my cabin anytime you have weary legs. I will send men to clear out the cave and seal it for good. It will be clean, tidy and locked tight when you return so I would like to give you this key for future use. I have copies in case you lose it. Enjoy your time, it is a beautiful place in the fall.”

Baeldan continued relaying events moving on to the incident with Banithor’s brother Rae in New Cyre. Banithor had no idea that his brother was a vampire and wished to see some kind of proof. Etta withdrew the vial of blood taken from Rae’s house. This along with the testiment of the party members was enough to convince him and his demeanor clearly changed to that of a man who’s heart has just been cast under the black cloud of sorrow.

“It must have been the war, he always loved Cyre and all the little things. He became sheltered and isolated when mother died and I left for war. I had no idea he felt so badly. I heard very little of him till he showed up one night here, muttering and rambling about Thum. I had no idea what he was talking about. Surely that sword is a blessing and a curse. You should seek guidance from the wizards of the Arcanix when you get the chance. I assure you that they will not give entrance lightly and you may want to gain more experience before heading that way.”

Baeldan quickly changed the subject from Rae to the happenings at Arythawn Keep. He seems distraught when it is relayed that the keep came under attack and that Elias had requested additional men.

Obviously forcing a more cheerful demeanor, Banithor suddenly changes the subject and thanks the group for their hardwork. As a reward he provides them with a queer box saying:

“I do not understand how this box works very well, but occasionally I have been able to gain a magic item out of it. The scripts on it are very delicate and it was very powerful at one time. It has gone dim and dormant possibly since I returned from the war. Maybe it will do you more luck than it has for me! Take it… maybe it will provide you with the gifts it once did for me.”

Banithor then goes on to describe a new dream that he has had.

“I saw mountains… they were beautiful and lush like you may see in Thrane. The sky above me was growing grey and upon looking up I noticed it was black. I feared what I may see if I continued to follow the smoke… I saw giants pillaging the hillside and town in the valley below. Fires were all around the town and people were being thrown like toys. The giants returned… There were giant shamans casting dark magic. I am very unclear to what end… it was a horrid dream… How did they get to Khorvaire? The dream ended looking at the beautiful mountains again. I saw the silver dragon standing in the distance… ever watching…”

After the telling, he suggests that the party set out in search for the purpose of the dreams. He explains that dragon lore has always demonstrated metallic dragons as entities of good and that this silver dragon from the dreams should be trusted. He believes that there will be many more dreams to come revealing what fate may become of the dreamers. His final suggestion before parting ways is to find a larger city to get insight into what these visions may be.
The party leaves the manor and heads back towards the Vathirond Tavern in which they have been staying.

After a discussion, it is decided that the group will to head towards Thrane together to pursue answers about these shared dreams between themselves and Banithor. The Lightning Rail being unavailable for a time due to unknown circumstances, it is agreed that the journey across the Breland border into Thrane will be made on foot. The party prepares to leave Vathirond at dawn and on the way out of the city, they are stop by a handsome proper man of ideal proportions and a proud walk.

He is obviously well off on his own, but he still keeps body guards around him.

“I am Oargev ir’Wynarn, decendant of Cyre ir’Wynarn and prince of Cyre. You owe me no allegiance and I would like to ask of you a favor as a peer. I have seen you compete and have heard good things of you from Banithor. I need good men and woman if I am to cleanse the Mournland and reclaim Cyre. The Lord of Blades is cunning and merciless. He needs to be put to a stop before he aligns more warforged to his cause. The living spells incinerate far to many men and woman that go to the Mournlands—- It is a dangerous place, only skilled people like yourself can handle these challenges. I will be rallying more men and woman for a siege into the wastelands. I will send for you when that time comes. You will be heavily rewarded for such aide, Khorvaire will be a much better place without the treat of the Lord of Blades any longer. Come back to us when you feel you can take on the challenges of the Mournland. Take this as a token of my gratitude in considering the quest.”

He hands Oinid a large coin purse containing 200 gold pieces. He signals his party to depart and they make their way towards the stables near the edge of town where their horses are laden with supplies for what looks like extended travel. As the party leaves town, Oargev and his guards ride swiftly past, also heading north.

Sleep on the first night of travel is brief and restless as a new dream, this one of a Red Dragon, plays out in the minds of the group.

“You see red swiftly fly in front of you, you are disoriented by it and upon tracking it see it is a red dragon. Just in front of you is the rest of the party. You glance up and see the dragon singling you out and bearing down on you. In the dream you turn and run as fast as you can.. the dragon overshoots you and you continue to run. You look behind you and the rest of the party is long gone. You continue to run as the dragon comes for the kill… he bites down on you piercing your body with his teeth, your vision turns black…. You wake up in your bedroll and have blurred vision… the fabric of the tent seems to animate in a vision of the silver dragon sheltering everyone together under his wing, the vision shows a red dragon bearing down and dragon flame meeting in the air from one dragon to another… The party is safe… the vision fades and you awake to see you were not the only one to see the vision.”

As the end of the dream rouses the members from their collective sleep and Amalis speaks out about the dream and the waking vision. The others acknowledge that they too have shared her vision and her dream. The sun rises quickly as camp is broken and the trek north towards Thrane continues.

In the distance a great towering city comes into view, and as the travelers draw nearer, they begin to see that it appears to be hovering several meters above the ground below which appears to be covered in large tents and wagons with people milling around in a sort of frenetically determined manner. The floating city of Argonth is resupplying and a small temporary market town has sprung up beneath it to facilitate the economic exchange.

The party enters the town and sees several military agents mingling and coordinating with the merchants in an attempt to expedite the resupply endeavor. As they pass through the center of the market, a shifter runs between them bumping into Oinid, stealing his coin purse and dropping the mace from her hand in the meantime. Half a heartbeat later the party was surrounded by several soldiers. Oinid was accused of stealing the mace, and when Baeldan spoke up in protest, both were put into manacles and escorted toward the monstrous hovering metropolis.

The two were escorted into the city and taken to see Alain ir’Ranek, the man in charge of the city operations. As the charges were being read out to Alain another man entered the office. As he approached they could see that it was Oargev, the friend of Banithor’s whom they had met just yesterday. He spoke up on Oinid and Baeldan’s behalf, citing his friendship with Banithor and Banothir’s trust for Oinid and Baeldan. Alain heard him, clearly taking his account to heart. He released the two accused and Oargev called in Etta and Amalis who were waiting.

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Return to Vathirond

After recovering from Lilith’s massive fireball a few miles from the cabin, the party set off for Vathirond to find Banithor. He was not at his manor, so they continued on to Arythawn Keep. Elias asked them to “hold down the fort” while he took a small group of soldiers into the Mournlands. Gambling took up most of the first night, and the first day was spent in each individuals own pursuits. The second night however, a group of Mourland creatures attacked the castle, but with the assistance of the soldiers, the party easily dispatched them. Elias returned and to thank the party for their help, offered to them his services should they ever need to enter the Mournland.

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A Cabin in the Woods

We went to Lake Brey and found the cabin. Found footprints, and followed them. Went into a tunnel under the dock.

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