Part 1: Keep on the Shadowfell
Before becoming known as the Shieldbashers, the party first met while
investigating a disappearance of a young woman in the town of
Fallcrest. The party consisted of Rosa, Wes, Fausto, Envy, Ninebreaker
(a Warlord watch commander) and a wizard who later left for his own
adventures. The investigation led within a chamber under an abandoned
watch tower where the girl had been killed in a terrible ritual.
Returning to the local Fallcrest inn, the party learned of more
disappearances that led them to the town of Winterhaven north east. On
their way to the town, the party was ambushed by Kobolds on the road.
Tracking the Kobolds and discussions with the local townsfolk of
Winterhaven led the party to another murder and eventually the Keep on
the Shadowfell where the murderer, a priest of Orcus named Kalarel,
had taken more young women.
The party battled all manner of goblins, hobgoblins, and terrible
undead creations spawned from Kalarel’s tainted wells. Eventually the
party battled Kalarel in a large chamber deep under the Keep where a
black portal to the Shadowfell swirled and sputtered. In his last
breaths, bloated black tendrils from the portal drew him screaming,
into the black world.
Lord Padriac of Winterhaven: A fair and just lord of Winterhaven who
hired the party to hunt down the source of the kidnappings.
Valthroon the Prescient: Mage of Winterhaven.
Kalarel: Murdering blood priest of Orcus. Now believed to be trapped
in the Shadowfell and tortured for his failures under the Keep.
Part 2: Thunderspire Labyrinth
After a well-deserved rest, the party discovered that the Hobgoblins
who worked for Kalarel also kidnapped slaves for mysterious groups in
the Thunderspire – an ancient minotaur labyrinth carved into the rock
below the mountains to the east. The party traveled through the large
caverns of the mountain to the Seven Pillared Hall – a ragtag town
ruled by the mysterious Mages of Saruun, a cabal of wizards
represented by their only employee, the ogre Bruug.
The party soon tracked the slaves a a hobgoblin holdout built within
one of the ancient minotaur keeps dated ten thousand years old. The
party killed the hobgoblins but found the slaves already sold to a
clan of Duergar dwarves. The party found a small shop of these Duergar
in the Seven Pillared hall and killed the occupants. Taking the store
over for themselves, they then hunted the Duergar to a fortified
fortress of three large structures bridged over a huge chasm. The
party killed the Duergar and their commander and rescued many of the
slaves but two young women who the Duergar sold to Gnoll demon
worshippers who were attempting their own horrific ritual in a
Minotaur testing chamber known as the Well of Demons.
The party put the slaves to work, giving them paying jobs within their
new shop, taken over from the Duergar provisioning store. Then the
party headed to the Well of Demons to rescue the last of the slaves.
Within the Well, the party faced the minotaur trials including trapped
mirrored pillars, huge minotaur statues, and a room full of portals
vomiting forth carnage demons. A final devious trap released a green
dragon. Only the heroic effort of Ninebreaker kept Rosa from falling
into a bottomless pit.
Facing a powerful demonic Gnoll priest, the party managed to prevent
the ritual from full success but, in rescuing the two young women,
Ninebreaker was lost into the Gnoll’s terrible portal. Two of the
party members, Envy and Fausto(?) saw a page from the gnoll priest’s
terrible tome which planted a curse within their minds, twisting them
and guiding them.
Commissioning a statue to their fallen comrade, the party then
discovered that a local rogue mage of Saruun, Paldemar, who broke his
order and began worshipping Vecna. The party met an aspect of Vecna on
the way in to the tower who tested them to see if they were worthy of
testing his vessel. They passed and entered Paldemar’s tower before
facing the wizard and defeating him.
Gendar: Drow proprieter of “Gendar’s Curios and Relics”. A business
man with many dealings above and below the surface. Deals in strange
and wonderful magical items.
Bruug: Ogre strong-arm representative of the Mages of Saruun. Hero of
recent War of the Cleansing.
Cabus DiVon: Chief storemaster of the Shieldbashers venture in the
Seven Pillared hall.
Oruntor: Mage of Saruun who informed the party of the betrayal of Paldemar.
Rendil Halfmoon: Innkeeper of the Halfmoon inn along with his aunt.
First to welcome the Shieldbashers to the Seven Pillared Hall.
Ninebreaker: Previous companion of the Shieldbashers. Now believed to
be trapped in the Shadowfell.
Paldemar: Mage worshipper of Vecna. Now dead.
Part 3: Pyramid of Shadows
Their business growing, the party had to address the pulling curse of
the gnoll’s book which led them far out into the deep woods where they
found a black pyramid. Outside of the pyramid the party battled some
bandits who had seemed to lose their leader into the pyramid. After
the battle the party entered the pyramid itself, falling through the
pitch black wall and into the world within.
Inside the pyramid, the party found themselves in the carrion pits at
the mercy of an Etten headsman who wanted to decorate his pikes with
the party’s heads, right next to the heads of many others he had taken
who became trapped by the pyramid. The party cut him down and
discovered that one of the heads, a grinning black-haired skull, could
speak and called herself “Vyrellis”.
With Vyrellis’s guidance the party traveled through the pyramid,
finding small pocket-worlds where other beasts trapped by the pyramid
made their homes. They soon found that the pyramid itself shifted and
changed to fit the creatures within. For a powerful necrotic Otyugh
known as the Charnal Lord, the pyramid built a devious floor-dropping
trap. For plant creatures, the pyramid built an entire outdoor
environment, completely sterile.
The party soon learned that the pyramid was a trap, a prison built to
hold a powerful sorcerer king known as Karavakos, who used his magic
to lure creatures within the pyramid in order to help him escape.
In the library of the Pyramid, the party discovered strange tomes that
told stories of other worlds and even stories of themselves. Some read
as though many years had passed. One of these notes seemed to describe
Ninebreaker’s trek across the Shadowfell while another spoke of
Kalarel’s torture under the hands of his masters for his failure in
the Keep near Winterhaven.
The party traversed the pyramid and soon faced Karavakos in his upper
sanctum. There they cut him down and the skull of Vyrellis, his
eladrin wife once long ago, tore his soul from his body and became a
demi-lich. Vyrellis, the demi-lich, released the party from the
pyramid and across the planes of existence where the winds of chaos
dropped them four years ahead from the time they left.
Vyrellis’s skull still sits within the black pyramid floating in the
Far Realm while her astral projection explores all the worlds of gods
Garish Vren: Brigand Lord trapped within the Pyramid of Shadows.
Location now unknown.
Vyrellis: Eladrin bride of Karavakos. Now a demi-lich residing in the
Pyramid of Shadows in the Far Realm while her mental projection
explores the known worlds.
Karavakos: An old Tiefling Sorcerer King whose dealings with devils
led to his imprisonment in the Pyramid of Shadows. Now dead and soul
stolen by Vyrellis.
Part 4: The Trollhaunt Warrens
The party returned to an entirely new Seven Pillared Hall. Some
friends died, some became married, business boomed and busted over the
years. Blood had spilled and beauty had emerged. Yet not all was
right. While the party learned of business opportunities in the far
village of Moonstair, Wes the rogue learned of a debt owed that
threatened his life and of his friends.
The party soon headed to Moonstair, the rogue Wes taking on the name
Dusk and covering his face with a skull mask acquired from the
dark-elf curio and relic seller, Gendar. Along the road, the party
faced an Oni mage and his troll escort who rummaged through the ruins
of a carriage. Routing the mage and defeating the trolls, the party
learned of a message being sent from Moonstair of great desperation. A
noble prince and his adventuring companions had fallen in the
Trollhaunt Warrens fighting a terrible growing troll king known as
Reaching Moonstair, the town’s mayor, Kelana Dhoram, asked the party
for help battling this troll threat and recovering the princes
Fighting across the Trollhaunt swamp, the party reached the warrens,
nestled between the torn crags of stone. The party battled armies of
troglodytes and trolls, seeing that the creatures were far from
passive. Finding a different route, the party defeated the black
dragon Nightwing. Ambushing the Troll King at the doors to his inner
sanctum, the party learned that Moonstair was already under attack.
Armies of the Troll King already marched west to the town and would
destroy her. The party killed the Troll King, Skalmad, who roared with
his dying breath:
“Death is but a doorway. I will return!”
A bounty hunter named Roy confirmed the troll’s threat against
Moonstair and confessed his own agenda to bring the rogue Wes back to
his employer, the gang lord Barstonnem in Fallcrest. An even more
dangerous bounty hunter also tracked Wes, said Roy, and would surely
kill people Wes cared about if he did not return to Fallcrest. Wes
agreed and left with Roy as the party rushed to save Moonstair.
On the way back to Moonstair, the party found a roadside alehouse
known as the Troll’s Tooth. There the “Blood Battle of the Troll’s
Tooth” as it would soon be known, took place with over a dozen people
torn to pieces by wolves as the party attempted to defeat the wolves
and kill the troll. There they met the traveling warlock, Sygmund who
joined them to save the Moonstair.
At the gates of Moonstair, the party held back wave after wave of
troglodytes and other more terrible creatures sent by the Troll King.
Only after the “Battle of the Second Gate” as it would one day be
remembered did the party learn that murder had found itself within the
walls of the town.
Roy: A bounty hunter sent to collect Wes and bring him to Barstonnem,
the gang lord of Fallcrest for a debt unpaid.
Mayor Kelana Dhoram: a half-elf mayor of the town of Moonstair.
Cham: a local gnome merchant and trade negotiator, seen as the primary
business dealer of Moonstair.
Skalmad: The Troll King. A powerful troll who united the tribes of the
Trollhaunt and seeks to restore the ancient Troll empire of Vardar.