Adventure: Shadows of the Last War
Session: 2006-11-11
Player: Rachel Reddick
PC: Antinua
Status: Wizard 3

Dear Kanathas:

If you would, please tell Uthen that it is a pity he has not previously encountered many psionics. However, considering my experience with Raidith, this may not be an entirely bad thing. I am glad to know that you are both well. I myself am in good health, which is fortunate, considering the activities in which I have been involved of late.

I must apologize for not writing for so long. I have been traveling on behalf of House Cannith, and therefore have been out of touch, out of Sharn and out of Breland altogether.

I also apologize that my handwriting is worse than usual; I am writing this on the lightning rail back to Sharn.

We were passing by a post office for House Sivis, to check for a message from Lady Elaydren, when we noticed that it had been damaged. We entered, and found the place in serious disarray and the clerk, unconscious. When the poor gnome awakened, she said that one tall humanoid and a number of smaller creatures had entered. The taller one had demanded, then apparently taken, a number of the messages.

Afterwards, an owl delivered a letter from Lady Elaydren. She had apparently noticed that transferring messages through House Sivis was unlikely to be successful, and asked us to meet her in the usual place.

Soon thereafter, we again met Lady Elaydren in the Broken Anvil. A somewhat broad human druid and his wolf accompanied her. She seemed anxious, and did not waste time with introductions. She gave us a pack, and stated that it contained both supplies and instructions. She also suggested that we would be well rewarded if we succeeded.

We had little more time before a tall, cloaked humanoid and a large number of kobolds entered. He fired an arrow directly at her head; however, it was somehow deflected to her shoulder instead. Additionally, a wound appeared in Alain’s shoulder at the same time. I took note of this at the time, but did not consider the implications beyond those of the magical capabilities of Elaydren’s enemies.

After a skirmish in which we all demonstrated our talents for subduing kobolds and causing mayhem in taverns, we found that the lead attacker was another warforged. This seemed hardly surprising, considering the interest of the Lord of Blades in the matter of the schema.

After this, and a quick application of Xame’s healing magic, Elaydren stated that we should leave as soon as possible; we asked her to join us, but she apparently had other tasks and means for departure.

We soon discovered that the sack she had given us was a handy haversack, and contained many useful items, notably a letter of credit with House Orien. It also held the critical instructions, which were essentially thus:

We were to meet a man by the name of Failin in the Bloody Market of Rhukaan Draal. He would take us to Rose Quarry, where we would be able to determine the location of Whitehearth, a House Cannith workshop. We would then go to Whitehearth, and retrieve another schema, which was connected to the same creation pattern as the one we had previously retrieved on Elaydren’s behalf. Afterwards, we would meet Elaydren in Rhukaan Draal.

This task was somewhat more arduous than we anticipated; Whitehearth lies in the Mournland. I did not remember enough of Uthen’s warnings about the Mournland before beginning this venture. Tell him that I consider his “I told you so” to already have been said.

The well-fed druid introduced himself as Anson Silverkin, of House Orien.

Thus, we took advantage of the letter of credit from House Orien, and rode the lightning rail most of the distance we needed. However, Rhukaan Draal is not sufficiently large to merit a station of its own. We accompanied a caravan that traveled there, and defended it from a group of bugbears and kobolds. I learned something of the negative qualities of thrown spears, but there was little trouble otherwise.

We reached Rhukaan Draal without other incident, where we eventually found Failin. He was formerly of House Orien, and operates an elemental-bound land cart. He was willing to ferry us to Rose Quarry, for a price. He also seemed to be in rather a hurry.

The reason for the hurry was a pair of bugbears who claimed that Failin had cheated them. After some confusion, we managed to evade them. Thence, we boarded his land cart, and began the journey to Rose Quarry.

We reached Rose Quarry around dusk. Some calamity had befallen Rose Quarry. Most of the area was burned, or covered in molten glass; much of the rest was touched by frost. Many of the buildings were reduced to the foundations, disconnected bits of wall, and rubble. We approached with caution. By “we,” I mean all of us save Failin, who was content to remain in his cart.

We immediately observed that a large group was camped within the ruins. The details were difficult to make out without a closer approach. Xame claimed that he would be the stealthiest of us, and I did not doubt it. I cast invisibility on him, which permitted him to observe the camp unnoticed. He described the camp as being guarded by both skeletons and living guards; he also observed a human woman who was apparently a necromancer, and a strange cleric. They all wore the symbols of the Order of the Emerald Claw.

When Xame returned with this information, we decided that discretion was the better part of valor, and chose to examine the parts of the ruins away from this group. We did not get very far. When we passed one of the more vitrified buildings, a group of dwarf zombies emerged. They were burned, covered in glass, and floated rather than walked. I pity the dwarves who died in Rose Quarry; I wonder how many more of them did not find their proper rest.

As zombies are unintelligent creatures, few of my ready spells would have any effect on them. I had not expected to meet undead. Tui, Alain and Mike held them off, while Xame called upon his divine powers, and turned a number of them. However, this problem would not be so easily resolved. The noise had attracted the attention of the members of the Emerald Claw; a pair of clerics came and rebuked the undead, sending them against us again.

By this time, we had determined that we would rather not remain in this position. We departed in the direction of one of the more intact buildings, from which a light could be seen. We entered as quickly as we could, and left Alain and Tui to guard the door. They were most effective, as their plate armor protected them from nearly all of the zombies’ blows. It took them time to deal with the undead due to the difficulty inherent in striking an enemy protected by glass.

Anson, Mike and I went towards the back of the building, to determine from whence the light was coming. In one chamber was another glass-encased dwarf, hauling rubble. In the other were two human guards, a man and a woman, both in the uniform of the Emerald Claw. Between myself, Mike, Anson and Anson’s wolf, we managed to subdue them.

Anson himself used his club to smash the male guard into oblivion, after the man was already unconscious. Anson is a rather brutal druid.

Alain and Tui joined us afterwards, having defeated all the zombies and seeing no other opponents in near proximity. Apparently the Emerald Claw thought that their zombies and the two guards were enough to destroy us. This is at least one case where it is better to be underestimated.

Xame healed the female guard, but only for the purpose of questioning her. She was rather strong-willed, and refused to say anything. He then attempted to forcibly persuade her. Torture is not effective; Alain, Tui and Mike were also of that opinion. Something of a tussle followed. As a result, no torture occurred and no information was given. I suspect that there was little to gain in any case. We then had another argument, over whether or not we should kill her to keep her silent about us! I seem to have joined a group with widely varying moral philosophies.

We had sufficient time to examine the chamber in which we had found the guards. It contained an unlabeled map of Khorvaire on the floor, as well as three hearths of different colors, one of which was white. Each had two statues, one on either side; each statue had written directions on the back, leading to a particular location on the floor and, thus, Khorvaire. One of these clearly indicated the location of Whitehearth. We took this information, and left the living guard. Before we were able to leave, however, we encountered a strange vampire. We asked no further questions, and simply dashed for the land cart.

I am afraid that I must resume writing later. Indigo seems to have gotten himself into trouble.

Your sister,