DATE – DAY 2-5 After returning to consciousness, I realized that I have yet to fulfill my destiny - N’asr did not call me home but it was a close call. My sentiment for Zent's general attitude has not abated. The mistress of the keep had barely been laid to rest before the vultures came for the spoils. Now they are the spoils, an ironic turn of events.
After regaining strength, the party headed north towards the caves. Arianna (Aria) Sterling and Thelöné Skovagt kindly scouted the entrance and the entire hill. What a gigantic waste of time. While I appreciate a little intelligence, sitting in the woods for the better part of an hour just to find out there are two entrances and a chimney was underwhelming. So Y'nal Eldoryn sends his bird down the chimney, just to find – wait for it - goblins was annoying. Aria had sneaked up to the entrance and spotted goblins and what turned out to be an ogre, in like the first couple minutes. So we snuck in the back way and discovered a large stalagmite with several holes that turned out to be the home of a black pudding. Thelöné nearly got himself dissolved, and both Aria and he enjoyed a bit of the au naturel, once their leather armor got disolved. I have managed to show Aria the value of a good short bow, seams she was getting tired of being on the wrong end of a blade.
So I brilliantly drew the ogres and goblins into an ambush using dancing lights. Dumb ogres and goblins, don't go into the light. We quickly dispatched the ogres, but the pesky goblins kept peaking out from behind the first dead ogre and shooting me. The pesky vermin actually put me down briefly. Eitherway, we mopped up the rest of the nest, and freed the townsfolk. Morak Ur’gray, the proprietor of the Nightstone Inn, was deeply saddened by news of the death of Lady
Velrosa Nandar. Given the news, he asked us to travel to Bryn Shander in Icewind Dale to inform the next of kin of his friend, Semile Southwell. He and the others would remain to rebuild the town. While I'm not keen on traveling many months, I figured that I would inform the next of kin, when I ever had the need or opportunity to reach the place Eitherway, heading to Waterdeep was going in the right direction. We helped him rebuild a portion of the bridge between the keep and the town before we set off.
After traveling north for three day, a large cloud with a tower atop it came into view. No rocks started fall, but a 1000-ft staircase made of clouds descended. I immediately accepted the invitation and started climbing, while the others "discussed" what to make of it. Finally, I guess the decided it was safe. I mean, we saw the giant bolders in Nightstone.
After an onerous climb, we reached the top, but there was no one to greet us, just a set of closed giant doors (pun intended). You would think that after all that, someone would be there to great you with a pint or two of cold ale. Knocked on the door, and heard a voice from far away, beckoning us to enter. So I open the door, look around and there is no one around. Then floating down through a giant hole in the ceiling comes this giant. He introduces himself as Zephyros, a cloud giant wizard. Make sense then to have your tower on a cloud. He explains that he has his divinations had instructed him to seek a group of "small folk" to restore the ording. He was horrified to learn of the attack on Nightstone, and explained that ording was shattered and so the giants were collection various relics and that a conflict was brewing to reestablish the castes. Regardless, he as offered to assist us, first by transporting us to Waterdeep and then on to Bryn Shander. The giant is a little crazy, but was willing to share some of his 1st level spells with his fellow wizards.
After traveling in the direction of Waterdeep for a couple of day, a group of Illuskan humans riding giant vultures landed on the cloud and knocked on the door requesting an audience with Zephyros. He was apparently busy with some kind of experiment, and left asked us to handle it. They were exceedingly rude, and after they yelled at Zephyros, who told them to go away. They became hostile. While I was going to close the door, they thought otherwise. Needless to say, it was not the fall that killed them, but made them generally unrecognizable. Got a couple of cool looking helms out of the deal. This is turning into quite the scavenger hunt lead by a schizoid giant whose head is really in the clouds.
Next stop Waterdeep…