Willaver Spellsword leads his mercenaries away on business, promising to return to the party later.
As the party is led by the captured giant, Kriv and Enri think about what they have learned from Willaver about the state of things in the Vale.
“The old noble families of lost Nerath seek armies, territory and plunder, and have pacified the Vale. Giants control the Dawnforge mountains. Alan West has named himself Duke without Nerathi approval. The other nobles of the Vale include Earl Faren Markelhay of Fallcrest, Baronness Clarissa DeGarmond of Gardbury, Baronness Regina Tress of Silver Lake, and Baron Talon Padraig of Winterhaven."
Kriv remembers that Kryath gave him one of a pair of Sending Stones to keep in touch with the clan. He asks the party to stop and wait while he attempts to make contact. After initiating communication he wakes a young dragonborn of the clan who has been tasked with watching the other sending stone for activity. He jumps up and returns with an adult. Kriv learns that Kryath is away trying to recruit Talon Padraig to fight against Alan West. Kriv asks about the relative strength of other forces in the Vale. The clan has 73 warriors, Talon has 50 more. Markelhay has no heir and upon his death his holdings will pass to West. Markelhay has 200 regulars. Clarissa has an unknown number of gnolls but claims greater than 200 warriors. Hammerfast is held by more than 200 giant warriors. West has 4400 fighting men paid with money earned through campaigns. Kriv is told Kryath will contact him in three days’ time.
The party spots Fiveleague House in the distance and decides to leave Thohand and Smoke to guard the giant in the forest just outside of town. Kriv and Enri enter the House and speak with the barkeep. They spot Glimmerkin over in one corner and approach him, hoping he might have some useful items for sale.
Glimmerkin sells them (6) Potions of Vitality in exchange for the 5000gp emerald they brought back from the Feywild. Enri purchases Boots of Leaping for 4200gp. Glimmerkin does not have the Barbed Baldric Kriv is looking for and suggests he check in Fallcrest.
Glimmerkin tells the party that they are being watched. When they turn around, a tiefling darts out from the opposite corner and leaves the Fiveleague House in an all-out run. Kriv pursues. The tiefling jumps on a horse and rides off, and Kriv attempts to follow on Dauntless and shoot the tiefling with his hand crossbow, but misses. The tiefling escapes and Kriv returns to the Fiveleague House.
Enri notices two gypsies and a horse-drawn wagon waiting outside. They appear to be Gwaelyn and Lily Bonecaller – but they have not aged! The gypsies call to Enri and Kriv and offer to tell their fortunes. Kriv ties a rope around Enri before letting her enter the gypsy tent, suspicious that these might be imposters.
Enri’s fortune telling goes without incident so Enri and Kriv reverse positions, Enri holding a rope tied around Kriv’s waist while he goes into the tent. Kriv’s fortune telling also goes without incident.
Enri’s fortune: “Above the lonely rock there is a glittering castle with a burning eye. Under a silver moon you will find your old enemy.”
Kriv’s fortune: “To free your people you must found Hammerfast anew, while once enemies became friends, enemies can become friends again. In the west you will build the heart of iron and the swords of the just will follow.”
We pay the gypsies 2gp.
The giant leads us on to the hills of Hammerfast, where the ground is pockmarked with mines. There are lights in the distance; the giants’ steading. We pay the giant 1gp and advise him to not tell other giants about our deal.
We enter a tunnel which opens up into a large underground crypt. Near the entrance, a ghost recognizes Kriv as a past resident of Hammerfast and warns us away – there is danger here.
A scroll mummy forms out of scraps of paper littered about the crypt.
After killing the scroll mummy and two zombies, we find 1200gp. The ghosts of the crypt come out and thank us for ridding them of Grisgol the scroll mummy.
A sword-bearing ghost asks Kriv to swear to restore Orcs and Dwarves to peaceful coexistence in Hammerfast. After Kriv swears the oath he bestows the party with (2) Potions of Vitality.
A kobold ghost speaks of rumors of creatures below who are controlled by an unknown wizard. Slaves are mining stone and metal for the giants to grow their army. Orcs still live in the hills and they are about to do something dangerous – they seek to awaken Callastrix, a chaos dragon. Even the kobolds thought Callastrix was too evil. Nosnra has a steel dragon who is in league with the Orcs. Nosnra is questioning the steel dragon in his dungeons. Learning the process of awakening Callastrix has driven the steel dragon quite mad.
An orc ghost tells of the city being overrun by bugbears. Goblins and bugbears have joined Nosnra. The different giant tribes are not getting along. Stone vs Hill vs some other tribe. Much of Nosnra’s army are mercenaries, only some are his hill giants. The orc ghost thinks the other races that make up the mercenaries will not fight as hard.
The ghost of Gorble Duskrider who Kriv knows as one of the signatories of the original peace between the orcs and dwarves, tells the party about the different giant tribes. There are the Stone and Hill giants, the Frost giants to the North, and the Fire giants who rule over all. Dwarves all left and set up a government-in-exile in Fallcrest. Caves should link to tunnels into Hammerfast. Kobolds know the tunnels best.
The kobold ghost describes the tunnels to the dungeon where the steel dragon is kept. There is a secret door in the back of the catacombs that leads to a library, the caves deep below the mountain connect to what might be underneath. Callastrix is a three-headed female red dragon. If she is released from the wizard’s curse that imprisons her, disaster would befall the entire Nentir Vale.
7000XP/4=1750XP each for defeating Grisgol and learning the secrets of Hammerfast
(8) Potions of Vitality (Enri 3, Kriv 3, Willaver 2)
Enri spends 4200gp on Boots of Leaping
Party traded 5000gp emerald for 6 of the 8 potions of vitality with Glimmerkin
Enri and Kriv each pay 1gp to gypsies
Kriv pays 1gp to giant
1200gp from Grisgol, 600 to Enri, 600 to Kriv.