Sacred Blades

Session 1: Daggerford

Daggerford

Fate led several heroes to the Daggerford bazaar, an open-air market near the west end of a walled town, each following their own goals. While browsing the merchants’ wares, they congregated around an alchemist’s tent, an elven man hawking a magical dagger carved from a horn(Only 500 gold!). Stocking up on healing potions instead, they passed on any overpriced weaponry.

They were interrupted by a massive explosion. Dust filled the bazaar, citizens ran screaming and were cut down as dozens of goblins attacked. Where were the guards, why were goblins attacking a walled town – none of that mattered now. The goblins seemed to be on a mission, and one of them grabbed that very dagger they just saw for sale. Despite taking heavy losses the goblins were victorious, fleeing with their treasure and leaving the heroes to help the wounded and bury the dead.

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Session 2: Draigdurroch Tower

Enduring the Elements

Departing Daggerford, the battle-tested heroes traveled north to Loudwater. Each had their own reasons, but it seems fate brought everyone together. They brought along the mage Curuvir, the man indirectly responsible for the goblin raid on Daggerford. Horses were purchased and the journey began.

As they traveled, the snow turned to a blizzard. Temperatures dropped, and the river froze solid weeks ahead of schedule. No one could have predicted that would happen, but at least they weren’t traveling by boat. Curuvir proved his worth, magically protecting everyone from the chilling cold…everyone but the horses, who soon perished. On foot, with no horses to clear a path in the snow, travel slowed. Kriv seemed used to a cold environment, and was able to guide the party past dangerous icy parts, around snow banks far deeper than they seemed, and led them safely along the frozen river. Along the way they found goblin remains, frozen solid, and evidence of an entire goblin camp that met a similar fate.

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Session 3: Draigdurroch Tower Finale

Draigdurroch Tower

Taking an elevator of sorts to the third floor, the party found themselves in a library. Preserved from any frost damage were many shelves of books, full of knowledge on countless topics. After disabling a flame trap at the desk, the books were looked over before deciding to save them for later and move on.

Carefully opening the next door, fully expecting ambush by elementals, golems or damn-near anything else, the party found itself in the master suite. Once expensively decorated, carpets and tapestries inside were brittle and stiff, long-since frozen. A large bed dominated the room, a frozen pillow on top and some frozen socks underneath.

A 5-foot high mirror stood next to the wall, four stiff corpses laying on their backs facing the mirror. The mirror’s surface rippled here and there, like the surface of a pond. After some initial investigation and the defiling of a corpse, the party assumed the mirror must show the way out of the room. They tried pointing it at the wall, then looking into the mirror to see the ‘true’ wall…but found themselves staring at the reflection of a halfling inside a black void.

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Session 4: Temple Reclaimed

Temple Reclaimed

Chasing a tiefling through the streets of Loudwater, the Sacred Blades arrive at a ruined temple. The tiefling bolted inside, slamming a door behind. They had been warned of this place: once a house of Tempus and waystation for all manner of adventurers, now a shadow of its former glory, a gang hideout. This may be the only chance the Blades have of bringing these thieves to justice; attack now, or they may flee the city and continue their deeds elsewhere.

A clamor arose, men shouting, weapons coming to the ready. One voice rose over the mob, shouting orders and threatening men with the wrath of Cyric for their cowardice. That name gave them pause, as the presence of a Cyricist indicated far greater evil than a mere thieves guild. The Blades hesitated, not wanting to rush into a trap. Inside, sounds of preparation were heard – boxes being pushed over, men moving into position. Unwilling to wait longer, the Sacred Blades burst into the room.

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Session 5: Zelbross

Zelbross

Surviving ambush by a long assassin, the Sacred Blades pressed onward to the ruined hamlet of Zelbross. Once a peaceful village known for its handmade pottery, quality smoking pipes and friendly taverns, Zelbross was abandoned over a decade ago following some forgotten disaster. This was a theme played out time and again since the Spellplague, as homesteads and hamlets were reclaimed by the wild and once-civilized places like Loudwater devolved into dangerous frontier towns.

As the Blades approached, a few remaining structures could be seen in the distance along with smoke from a large campfire. Horses were stowed well out of sight, and the group advanced with caution. Fibbit scouted out the area, seeing several guards on patrol and four wagons circled around the bonfire. He sneaked forward, Yarnon close behind, and the two dispatched a lone guard before he could even cry out. Sneaking into a wagon, Fibbit saw several large kegs – fitting the description of the kegs children were carried in. Quietly prying one open, it was empty inside except a few scraps of cloth; the children had been moved.

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Session 6: Approach to Llorkh

Approach to Llorkh

After several days of dangerous travel and a battle with goblin raiders, the Sacred Blades were in sight of the isolated mining town Llorkh. They believed it to be the source of many slaves and a base for the Zhentarim. The Blades were eager to get inside and strike at their hated foes.

Sitting in the foothills of the Greypeaks, Llorkh was surrounded by a simple wooden palisade. Smoke from forges rose into the winter air and guards stood watch at the gates. Just outside the walls, an army of some sort was encamped. Beyond the town, foothills became mountains and a steep canyon divided the nearest peak. There sat a squat dwarven compound of three towers, an ancient ruin still standing as proof of the quality of dwarven construction.

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Session 7: Llorkh in Flames

Dwarven Stronghold, Continued

Through the next door, a rumbling voice could be heard speaking Giant. Not good. While the Blades developed a plan for handling a giant, the door burst open. A huge ogre ran out of patience, eager to “smash Zhents”. Clearly confused about who his opponents were, he completely filled the hallway, and fought fiercely before being cut down. Behind him were several orcs, standing no chance once their champion was slain.

The orcs tried to surrender, claiming they worshiped Shar too, just like their Netherese attackers. Turns out they had a wealth of belief, and were open to Tempus or pretty much any god that would keep them alive. They gave up details on the layout of the fortress, location of the slaves, and number of dwarves. They also warned of dwarven undead that kept to a specific room and of summoned demons guarding the slave room, brought here and controlled by the duergar leader.

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Session 8: Battle for Llorkh

Rally the Troops

The Blades had just delivered the unconscious body of the militia leader Nathan to the remaining defenders of Llorkh. They had barricaded themselves in the merchant district, overturning wagons and preparing for attack by hobgoblins. The militia had no leader, their attack on the goblin camp was defeated, their city was in flames and their families were in danger. Morale was at a low point, it was only a matter of time before men deserted and fled for the hills.

There was no apparent leader of these desperate citizen-soldiers. After a few awkward moments a bald, barrel-chested man stepped forward. He was Robert, a local smith who took part in the attack on the hobgoblin camp. He explained how things went wrong, how the hobgoblins were ready for the surprise attack and fought back the militia. Spies must have revealed the plan. The mercenary hobgoblins pushed back, driving the fleeing militia back to the town, looting and killing as they went. Robert’s squad made their stand here in the marketplace. Over the last few hours, more small groups of militia have trickled in, wounded and exhausted.

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Session 9: Benadar Mansion

Family Ties

Safely back in Loudwater, the Sacred Blades finally relaxed and took care of personal business.

They met with Curuvir, newly-returned from his research trip to Draigdurroch Tower, and discussed his findings. He is now sure that Draigdurroch still lives. Whether free or imprisoned he does not yet know. If free the dwarven warlock could become a major threat, especially if he returns to his old tower…or visits his old students. Curuvir also reported seeing patrols of humans lurking around the Dire Wood near the tower. He also mentioned that Orus, the druid of the High Moor, still wanted to speak with them about problems to the south.

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Session 10: Pilgrims of Oreme

Dark Knowledge

Exiting the Benadar Manor with haste, the Blades made the quick ride back to Loudwater. They sought a cure for Operious’s new condition. Though he insisted he felt fine, the evil tattoo worried the other Blades. Kriv suggested they speak to his temple leaders back in Waterdeep; surely they could contain the threat. The others agreed, though Operious worried what form this “help” would take. The creature seemed to be imprisoned within him now, and perhaps a magical solution could be found that would avoid the not-so-tender mercies of Tempus. Desiring a second opinion, Operious went to speak with Curuvir while the others took care of business in Loudwater.

Curuvir

Concealing his hands in gloves, the mage casually asked Curuvir for references on containing various extraplanar entities. The request was believable enough – the Blades had previously investigated Draigdurroch Tower, a bastion of a long-vanished devil-worshiping warlock, at the request of Curuvir. The Mage of Loudwater pointed out several tomes of knowledge, and also recommended a local expert of sorts – the warlock Maldreth, who was in town and had traded with Curuvir recently. Curuvir believed the warlock was more trustworthy than his old mentor Draigdurroch.

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