DISTURBANCE AT THE HERRON HOUSE
The melee in the ruinous hall was fraught with mounting peril as the adventurers found themselves stumbling over the bodies of the vanquished dead. And while many of the more dangerous foes were felled, the arrival of Gwyneth Whitemane, the towering platinum-tressed beauty clad in full plate and armed with a great sword that she was more than skilled enough to wield, triggered in them the reflex of flight rather than fight in the hearts of the wounded compatriots.
Raben called out to retreat, and the adventurers followed suit, making for the secret door they had spied the elf exit when they had first entered the rift hall. The healer held the door, advising that Rhaina had long since made the descent. As everyone poured into the secret stairwell, just ahead of Whitemane’s pursuit, having ignored her orders to surrender, Raben closed the portal behind them and drove ten spikes into the door.
Below, they found a storage room filled with fresh produce and barrels of expensive ale and wine. Nod discovered an array of items, some curiously magical, on a table, as if awaiting to be processed. Meanwhile, in a small treasure vault, several more items were discovered — some curiosities, some magical, and some valuable — including a stockpile of Zhentarim-minted gold coins.
Others pressed ahead, moving into a deeper section of the ruin’s underbelly. Nammosi discovered several curious items, including a diary written in an elven hand reporting the progress of their search for an item called the Ring of Summer Flame, with a list of possible locations scattered around the village of Phandalin.
Kari stumbled upon a glowing arch that revealed a blue sky and clouds as he approached. Feeling unease before such magic, he sought out Nod that they might carry off the heavy cask of gold found in the vault.
Elrian uncovered a room where a binding ring surrounded a swirling morass of psychedelic light. Magical writing, Celestial he was sure, surrounded the edges. Nammosi translated — “As one knows a place, so to can one go to a place”, however a portion of the script was damaged and unreadable, but Elrian was confident this was a portal of some kind.
Meanwhile, Peron searched another door, the sound of a woman sleeping on the other side. Entering stealthily, the elven ranger triggered a secret glyph awakening the sleeper. Annoyed, she refused to answer his questions, commanding him to step outside while she dressed. He complied.
The party was immediately concerned, especially as they were standing in the hallway burdened with copious amounts of loot they had pilfered from the woman’s subterranean lair. Who was she? What role does she play in the Herron Guild’s presence above?
When the door opened, she stood magnificent, clad in emerald robes, her eyes shadowed within a deep hood. She held a staff in her left hand. Her right hand’s fingers were interlocked as if a spell were awaiting release…
to be continued