It started as a simple dungeon run…
But it has become a road trip into danger. When these 5 heroes brought the Secret Keeper’s Amulet out of an abandoned dragon’s lair, they thought it a mere treasure. But they soon discovered it to be so much more. It allows you, the watchers of the time stream, to send chaos into their world with your forces of good and evil.
It is also the key to unlocking the secrets of the Wardens, Ain’s ancient protectors, who lately have been kidnapped and held in dangerous locations. The team has so far found and freed two of these Wardens, who stand over 100 feet tall and wield the power of the elements in staggaring ways.
Now the team is on the trail of their third Warden, traveling down the road in a custom vardo, gifted to them by the Duke of Winkburgh, and pulled by three 15 foot tall attack birds called Achaierai. They ride north, out of the town of Winkburgh, headed toward the mountains of Nelrim, where they believe a Warden remains captured at the volcano known as Skyscorcher Peak.
They found clues to this destination while investigating the spelltower of the Ashen Mage, Kalkata Theed, a shadowy figure who seems to wield magic beyond what any of them have seen before. There, they retrieved a frightening book of dark magic, and a chest that contained a golden dragonscale that shone as bright as the sun.
When they encountered the Ashen Mage’s apprentice, a necromancer who allied himself with a bloodthirsty pack of werewolves, they fought and defeated him in a harrowing battle, claiming his copy of the Mage’s book as well.
Consulting with James Qullis’ old mentor, Hermil Fesh, the team decided to keep both books inside their bag of holding, along with the dragonscale, and head toward the dwarven city of Dalto Thum, said to be the only way in to Skyscorcher Peak. Fesh told them to find a paladin there named Dondo Karigina and to handle the tomes of dark magic with extreme caution.
But the journey has been further complicated by romantic feelings among members of the team. When Siv hired a magnificently talented bard to sing a love song to Lily, it nearly caused her to leave the group, after Uggo also expressed feelings for her. But with a beautiful song of her own, Lily did what she does so often, healing wounds and urging everyone to trust and be honest with one another. Her overture to honesty moved Siv to admit that way back when the team was in the city of Terlis, he had allowed an old flame, a teifling thief named Vik, to abscond with a book vital to their quest. It also inspired James to reveal that the original cause for the Moratorium on Magic in Terlis was a murder he had committed, before he ever met the team.
Unburdened of old secrets, the adventurers resumed their long journey north. One of their Achaierai laid an egg, Fahima learned to conjure elementals and wrestled with the ramifications that brought, and Siv fell asleep while keeping watch, allowing creatures to tear into their supplies and steal the majority of their Achaierai feed.
Even more unsettling, they spotted an enormous, golden dragon in the sky above the road, searching for something. Convinced it was drawn to them by the dragonscale in their bag, they hastily buried it in the woods, and made their getaway.
As the prospect of the dwarven city loomed, Uggo, troubled by the mounting war between Dwarves and Orcs, consulted with the spirits of his ancestors for guidance in how to behave around his longtime enemy. But before the team could make their final day’s journey to Dalto Thum, they heard, rising from the river that surged alongside the road, sounds of distress.
Siv leapt onto the back of an Achaierai, using the Amulet to tame it into single-rider obedience, and Uggo dashed across the boulders to the river’s edge. What they found there were two dwarves, pinned awkwardly in the rushing rapids, one on a crude floatation device, the other barely keeping his head above water in the churning current. Swirling around them, buzzing by them, and even landing onto them to extract blood with vicious bites from their extruded mouthparts, were a surprising number of giant Dipterans - 4 and 5 foot long horseflies hovering over the river.