Icehammer Dwarves: Session 1

When we set out from Torunedar, dawn was just breaking. We had left in a hurry, with me only finding out about Berreck’s vision the day before. It was certainly a disturbing fantasy, to think that there were enemies as powerful as dragons and hordes of orcs just roaming around.

Anyway, it was around noon when our bland march was interrupted by a growl from up ahead. Three wolves appeared from over the crest of the upcoming hill, stalking toward us threateningly.

Quickly, I launched a preemptive strike, with Berreck following suit shortly after. Unfortunately, they kept coming, reaching us and attacking both of us. After a couple of exchanged blows, we finally defeated the beasts. Berreck noticed one of the wolves still whimpering, and swiftly put it out of its misery.

We continued on our way and reached Phandalin around supper time. Coming up through the miners’ trail, we passed a couple of buildings. Two stood out, a modest trading post with a blue lion painted on a wooden shield-shaped sign hanging above the front door and a slightly larger structure with a red pitched wooden roof and bell tower at the back, that was labeled, “Townmaster’s Hall.”
The Townmaster’s Hall had a notice board, which we glanced at. It had three jobs available, all of which were surrounding the sightings of a white dragon and orcs nearby.

The first job was, “Dwarf prospectors found ancient dwarven ruins in the mountains southwest of here, and have been working an archaeological dig seeking treasure and relics. They need to be warned that a white dragon has moved into the area. Take the warning to them, then return to Townmaster Harbin Wester to collect a reward of 50 gp.”

The second job was, “A clan of reclusive rock gnomes resides in a small network of caves in the mountains to the southeast. The gnomes of Gnomengarde are known for their magical inventions, and they might have something with which to defeat the dragon. Get whatever you can from them. If you bring back something useful and don't want to keep it for yourselves, Townmaster Harbin Wester will pay you 50 gp for it.”

The last job was, “The local midwife—an acolyte of Chauntea named Adabra Gwynn—lives by herself in a stone windmill on the side of a hill a few miles south of Phandalin. With dragon sightings becoming more common, it's not safe for her to be alone. Urge Adabra to return to Phandalin. Once she's safe, visit Townmaster Harbin Wester to claim a reward of 25 gp.”

We walked through what appeared to be the town square and approached an establishment marked as The Stonehill Inn. Entering, we grabbed a table and introduced ourselves to the innkeeper, a friendly human named Toblen Stonehill. We ordered food and bought ourselves a room.

Once we were up in our room, Berreck and I discussed our course of action for the next day, and then went to bed.

* * * * *

Early the next morning, we approached the Townmaster’s Hall. Berreck knocked, and a small voice squeaked from inside.

“Are you the dragon? You wouldn’t want to eat me, I’m all skin and bones! There are much meatier people outside with you! No need to come in here!” the voice rambled.

“We aren’t the dragon,” Berreck clarified. “We’re adventurers. We are here to inquire about some of the notices on the job board.”

“Oh. You’re adventures. Did you kill the dragon?” the man fumbled, hope growing at his last sentence.

“Not yet. Do you have any more information about the location of the dwarven ruins?” Berreck asked, annoyance clear in his tone.

“Will you tell me when you kill the dragon?” the man (who I assumed was the townmaster) deflected as a map displaying the directions toward the dwarven ruins was slid under the door.

“Yes,” Berreck answered. We walked away, gathered all our belongings, and left Phandalin, heading southwest, in the direction of the dwarven ruins.

We arrived there in the late afternoon after an uneventful journey. We navigated through the ruins at the entrance before coming across a set of steps. In the middle of the steps was a large pile of rubble. As we walked by the rubble, a voice called out to us.

“Hello. Who are you?” the voice greeted. Turning, we saw two dwarves, a male and a female, eating rations and leaning against the pile of rubble.

“I am Berreck, the mightiest dwarf alive!” Berreck boasted.

“Diesa,” I joined.

“We’ve come to warn the dwarves here that there have been dragon sightings nearby and that they should head back to Phandalin for the time being. Are you those dwarves?” Berreck explained.

Dazlyn Grayshard and Norbus Ironrune, as their names were, were shield dwarf prospectors and business partners. While looking for gold in the mountains southwest of Phandalin, they had decided to explore a nearby canyon and found evidence of an ancient dwarven settlement buried by an avalanche. They'd spent the past several months clearing the rubble and scouring the ruins for treasure but had found nothing of value so far.

We tried to convince them to come back to Phandalin with us, and we wound up striking a deal. We would help them defeat monsters that they had encountered in the ruins, and when we were done, they would come back with us.

Berreck and I entered the adjacent room, searching for the jelly monster they had described. The room was of moderate size, with four columns in the middle. An altar sat on a raised section of the floor, at the back of the room.

Berreck circled around the altar, checked to see if the jelly was behind it. Seeing nothing, he looked to the columns to see if there was anything on that side of them. He also found nothing, but, on the ceiling, he spotted an ochre jelly moving towards him.

He quickly moved away and the two of us alternated throwing ranged attacks at the jelly as we led it in circles around the room. It was very slow, so we had no problems. Once Berreck had run out of javelins, he started throwing his handaxes. The handaxes sliced the creature in half, but didn’t seem to damage it; it just started trying to flank us with both parts.

However, I foiled this plan by swiftly killing one of the slimes. This happened a couple of times, with Berreck making the jelly duplicate and me killing one of the two until I finally managed to kill the original before Berreck could split it. In total, I had killed five jellies with my spells.

We searched the room ensuring it was empty save for a couple of secret doors. We opened one, which was in a column, and as Berreck leaned into the column, skulls fell down from above. He searched the small space and found a box under the door. Opening it, he found 15 emeralds. After searching one last time, Berreck closed the door of the column.

We called Dazlyn and Norbus into the room and they researched while we headed through the other secret door. We explored for a bit, meeting a bunch of dead ends and finding one room with clues to being the bedroom of a priest of Abbathor, the dwarven god of greed.

As we were heading back to the main room, we heard cries of help from Dazlyn and Norbus. Rushing back, we found the pair backing away from four orcs, who were advancing threateningly.

After Berreck and what seemed to be the lead orc exchanged a few brags and tried to intimidate the other, we started fighting. The two of us succeeded in drawing the orcs away from the miners, but when only two orcs were left, I fell.

* * * * *

When I awoke, the fight was clearly over. The orcs had been hacked to pieces, all beside one, which was tied up and propped against the wall, unconscious, and Berreck was pacing impatiently, while Dazlyn and Norbus sat leaning against the wall.

Once I was fully conscious, Berreck and I showed the priest’s bedroom to Dazlyn and Norbus. They searched the room and found a secret door, and we decided we would check it out tomorrow because it was getting pretty late.

We rested, with Berreck and I in one room and Dazlyn and Norbus in another. When we awoke, we went to check on the orc prisoner, who was now gone, along with Berreck’s rope. Then, Berreck and I went through the secret door.

We found more corridors, occasionally going back to tell the miners that a tunnel was safe for them to explore. Eventually, we came to a pile of rubble with a set of ruined, red leather armor barely visible from inside it.

As Berreck went to grab the armor, I spotted another slime seeping through the stone. I warned him, and we both let it follow us back through the tunnels and blasted it with attacks until it died. However, all of Berreck’s javelins were ruined in the process.

Eventually, we were all confident that we had cleared out the entirety of the ruins. Dazlyn and Norbus gifted us two sending stones on behalf of both of them. Supposedly, the person with one stone can communicate with the other stone bearer once a day. We thanked them and Berreck gave them one more emerald each (he had apparently given them each two while I was unconscious the previous day).

We brought the pair back to Phandalin and to the Townmaster’s Hall, where Harbin Wester, the townmaster, pushed each coin of our payment underneath the door individually instead of opening the door.

* * * * *

The next morning, we visited the Lionshield Coster, which sells adventuring supplies. Berreck bought some rope and javelins to replace the equipment he had lost the previous day, and we headed off south to find and warn Adabra Gwynn, the midwife, and acolyte of Chauntea.

We traveled uneventfully until we arrived at Adabra’s home, where we encountered a creature with the body of a lion, tail of a snake, wings of an eagle, and head of a human. The manticore, as I assumed it was, was attacking the mill house.

Through the window of the second floor, a woman called out to us, “A little help here!” Berreck and I both tried to attack the manticore from our long-range attacks, but we both missed. “That’s not exactly the help I was hoping for!” Adabra called to us.

The manticore flew into the air and turned towards us, bellowing, “Stay out of this! It’s none of your business!”

Muttering something like, “It actually is our business,” Berreck ran to the top of the neighboring hill to get a better angle. I followed.

Both of us attacked the beast from afar, and though it approached Berreck to counter, its attacks never seemed to hurt him very much.

Finally, I managed to drop the monster, and we went up to the house. Adabra thanked us and we told her about the danger of the dragon. She gifted us two potions of healing but was reluctant to return to town, saying she could handle herself. She even went so far as to offer us a letter so that we could gain the reward for our task. She also told us that she made healing potions as a job, and if we ever needed any, we should come to her.

No comments:

Post a Comment