The Untying Platoon

Journey to the Dessarin Valley

22nd December 2017

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Waterdeep

When we last saw our adventurers, they had all arrived at Waterdeep after a grueling chase by a ghoul. Some of them sought out Xanathar, the being who had asked them to locate the Forge of Spells. 

They eventually found him at the Yawning Portal Tavern, where he informed them that the destruction of Phandalin was most likely the work of elemental cultists. The best lead they had to follow them were reports of an unusual number of natural disasters occurring in the Dessarin Valley region. He then pointed the party in the direction of Durnan, the barkeep, for transportation to the area.

Once downstairs, Badger attempted to attract the notice of Durnan by calling him like a cat. After thoroughly embarrassing the rest of the party, he was pointed in the direction of the fireplace, where Durnan and a wizard were sitting. As the adventurers approached the two of them, they noticed the wizard seemed frozen in the act of putting an imaginary pipe to his lips.

As Bartholomew was discussing with Durnan the best way to get to Beliard, Valygris placed the golden pipe that had been stolen from the ghoul in the wizard's hand, and suddenly, the wizard came to life! Upon awakening, after some confusion, it was revealed that his name was Erlminster, and that he had been stuck like that for roughly 150 years.

Badger briefly managed to convince Erlminster that he was Mordekainen, a chronomancer who Erlminster had known before his imprisonment, until Durnan announced that he couldn't possibly be, as Mordekainen was dead. Erlminster was shocked by this revelation, and he inquired as to why, then, did we smell like time travel?

The adventurers went on to explain that they had had a strange experience which had pulled them all together, and they had been to what seemed to be the future. He surmised that this experience had a purpose, perhaps as a warning of things that may come to pass. Beyond that, he was unable to explain why or how this happened to the party, except that they may be the only ones capable of stopping it.

Keen to continue with their quest, the party readied themselves to depart. Durnan gave each of them a mahogany key, which would give them a way back to the Yawning Portal when they were ready to return. Valygris decided instead to look for other monasteries, to seek their aid in defeating the cultists.

Beliard and Stone Bridge

The party were transported to another tavern in the town of Beliard, nearly identical to the Yawning Portal, but much quieter. Bartholomew asked the barmaid if she had heard of any unusual occurrences in the area. After a moment's thought, she mentioned that a caravan had left for Womford a few days prior, but none of the travellers along that way had seen or heard of it since.

The party travelled south, towards Summit Hall, and a few hours later, noticed a flock of vultures to the west. Deciding to investigate, they found the remains of the caravan near the banks of the River Dessarin, two stone cairns, and signs of a great battle. While Marvan went above to look for where the attackers had gone, Otka started excavating the larger of the stone cairns, and found the body of a bugbear and an earth cultist. Badger divined that a party of 30 bugbears and a few humanoids had fought, and a good number of them had left. 

Then, Marvan was ambushed, by none other than Lord Albrek himself. Recovering from the attack, the party readied themselves to fight him. However, before they could make a move, Glass-staff struck at the orphan Carp, whom Bartholomew had taken into his care. He was struck by lightning, and with such force that there was no chance of saving him.

Lord Albrek then decided to leave, apparently deciding that the party was not a threat to him. Badger proved him wrong, by striking him with such force that he was knocked out of the air. His two companions, air cultists riding giant vultures, were quickly overwhelmed by the party. Badger and Otka went to investigate where Glass-staff had landed, while Bartholomew and Ahlia stayed behind to bury Carp.

Glass-staff had landed across the river, and while there was evidence of his charred wings, he was nowhere to be found. Unwilling to leave it at that, Badger was going to cross the river to find him, but was held back by Otka. She suggested that they should cross the river at Stone Bridge, to the north, as that was of dwarven construction, and the only way that she would cross the river.

Rejoining the other three at the ruined caravan, it was decided that they would head back to Beliard and stay the night, as Otka warned them that it would be folly to attempt a crossing in the dark. As they approached the bridge the next day, they understood exactly why it was such a bad idea.

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