Chronicles of Khaldun: Crux of Eternity

Revenge of the Giants, Part 19

Godsday, Patchwall 18, 552 CY (50 AN)

It is decided that Bezaldooz, Bosabrieln, Torinn, and Valna, their companions Geverspike and 254, and Torinn’s new shield guardian will remain in Mordenkainen’s magnificent mansion while Peren uses his obsidian steed to scout the island. They will open the mansion to check for him every hour or so; Peren gets a sending stone, as do they.

Peren uses the talisman of the seven winds to calm the storm and then flies over the island. In scouting, he finds two things of interest: another guard tower in the northwestern corner, evidently manned by ice archons, and a cave in the northeastern corner. On his way back to the south, he spots a single giant wandering. He flies down and finds it’s a female frost giant, walking with a staff and clad in a flowing coat. A polar bear accompanies her. He swoops down, hovering on his mount to speak to her. She introduces herself as Ragnhildur Brimirsdóttir, daughter of Jarl Brimir Grugnurson. Peren flirts with her rather shamelessly, although she seems potentially interested. Peren suggests that the Jarl is no longer a concern on this island, but she seems nonchalant — in fact, since that means her father is no longer a concern, she would be interested in returning home to take command of her frost giant tribe. She would be willing to reward Peren and his associates if they are willing to assist. Peren agrees; he will fly back to their camp, she will continue to head south, and she will meet them somewhere in the middle of the path.

When Peren rejoins the Shields of the Sorrowfell, he suggests they investigate the cavern in the northeast corner of the island, and explains his encounter with the frost giantess. Although the Shields are wary — especially Torinn, who thinks this sounds suspiciously like a trap — they decide to assist.

The next morning, they leave Mordenkainen’s magnificent mansion and head north. After about three hours, they encounter Ragnhildur Brimirsdóttir. Introductions are made, Bosabrieln also flirts with her, and the Shields explain that they are heading to the northeast to retrieve her ancestors’ funerary urn. She is more than willing to make this detour.

After an hour or two, the Shields are aware of a shape coming from the sky — a truly massive white dragon, probably the largest creature they have ever seen. By his size, he is no doubt ancient. He introduces himself as Darrhturacrithux, Lord of Doom and Ice, and demands tribute from them in the form of gold and magic items; Bosabrieln suggests the Shields show him their magic items.

Battle is swift and brutal. 254 and Geverspike, having never encountered anything of this scale before, are overcome with fear and refuse to come closer to the beast, and Darrhturacrithux glides into the fray, knocking over Torinn with powerful beats from his wings. The ancient dragon is otherwise overwhelmed, as Bezaldooz and Valna pelt the dragon with fiery spells, Bosabrieln tries to keep it dazed, and Ragnhildur keeps it from flying with powerful, gusting winds and lightning. Peren cleaves into it, and Ragnhildur’s polar bear, Skelfing, moves to attack the ancient dragon. Torinn rises and cleaves deeply into the dragon with his axe. Seeing it is outnumbered, it tries to flee, but Ragnhildur sends it painfully back to the ground with high winds and electrocutes it with lightning. When it lands, Bezaldooz channels all of his power into a fireball, which slays the beast.

The only injury to the Shields is a slight bruise Torinn incurred when he fell.

Hoping to find the beast’s lair, Valna casts speak with dead upon it, but the surly dragon refuses to reveal anything other than its lair is not on this island. After a debate about trying to harvest the bones from the dragon to repair the hag’s bone ship, they cover it with snow and continue on their way. They come to a stop as night approaches, and Bosabrieln casts Mordenkainen’s magnificent mansion. Ragnhildur joins them, although she finds the interior rather too warm for her liking. That evening, she and Bosabrieln retire to the same bedchamber for a dalliance the logistics of which are probably better left unconsidered.

The next morning, the Shields set out for the cave. They manage to climb the cliffs atop which the cave is situated and enter by nightfall. Although the six frost giants within are jumpy, and expect to be devoured by demons or worse, Bosabrieln and Ragnhildur manage to keep them calm and explain that they are returning home. The frost giants agree to accompany them, and reveal the funerary urn among their things. Ragnhildur suggests they not use Mordenkainen’s magnificent mansion for the rest of the trip so as to make the giant companions more at home.

The group camps in the cave for the night, and then sets out for Kaseem’s boat in the morning, on Freeday, Patchwall 21. Along the route, they encounter a slain contingent of frost giants, and shortly thereafter, they encounter a frost giant ghost with two animate frost giant corpses. Bosabrieln and Ragnhildur manage to convince the unquiet dead that they bring the last funerary urn back to Jarl Hargaad, and mean no violence. The dead accept this and leave the Shields and their frost giant allies unmolested.

They continue until nightfall, when they make camp. The next day, they encounter three more frost giants, whom they bring into the retinue. Finally, on Sunday, Patchwall 23, the Shields and the giants will travel to Kaseem while Peren uses his obsidian steed to deliver the last funerary urn to Jarl Hargaad and return.

Kaseem is amused to see the Shields with so many frost giants, and they explain their situation. They finish repairing the boat. Meanwhile, Peren flies across the island, and activates his boots of speed to wander into Jarl Hargaad’s tomb, just in case he needs to leave in a hurry. He presents the funerary urn, and the ancient king thanks him. He says he may take any of the treasure in the bone pile, and also presents Peren with his iron crown and mask, revealing himself as a withered corpse with sunken eyes. He tells Peren when he is finished to never return.

After Peren is finished looting, he climbs on his nightmare and returns to meet the others. The following day, Moonday, Patchwall 24, Kaseem, the Shields of the Sorrowfell, 254 and Geverspike, and eleven frost giants disembark the island. (The Shields inquire about any potentially remaining frost giants on the island, but Ragnhildur says they are likely dead, which puts an end to that issue.)

During the week-long voyage to the island of the frost giants, the groups drink and feast, and the Shields manage to create a rapport with the frost giants. At some point, Ragnhildur enters the Shields’ tent and asks if they have anything that could potentially aid her legitimacy. Having previously discussed this eventuality, Bosabrieln presents her father’s crown. She suspects that will do, and thanks the Shields.

Kaseem’s boat arrives in the frost giant village on Moonday, Ready’reat 3. Everyone disembarks, and Bosabrieln and Ragnhildur greet the frost giants, convincing them to accept Ragnhildur as the new Jarlkona. The frost giants also agree to keep their raids out of the lands of men, instead sticking to this side of the Elemental Chaos, and Ragnhildur proclaims the Shields of the Sorrowfell as drotin and fruha of the frost giant ordning. After much feasting that night, the Shields return to Kaseem’s boat the following morning and leave the village.

On Freeday, Ready’reat 7, the Shields spot another ship on the Sea of Howling Souls, apparently on an intercept course. They are initially wary, but the captain — a water genasi, by his look — shouts greeting and asks if they are the Shields of the Sorrowfell. As they answer affirmatively, he indicates one of his passengers wishes to speak with them. Belowdecks, there is a tall, lanky, blue humanoid creature with more fingers and joints than a regular human. It introduces itself as Keboak, a Mercane merchant, and indicates it wishes to trade with them, particularly if they have any magic items to sell; it is willing to trade fair market value for such things, no questions asked. The Shields offload many of their old treasures, and purchase a few items of their own. Bezaldooz agonizes for a while over determining how to afford a first edition copy of the Tome of the Stilled Tongue, said to be penned by Vecna himself, but ultimately decides on the robe of the archmagi Keboak carries. Once everyone is adequately resupplied, they bid Keboak farewell, and he tells them to find his shop in Sigil anytime.

Kaseem and the Shields arrive in Flotsam on Godsday, Ready’reat 11. Kaseem thanks them for their assistance, and ensures they have his piece of the divine engine before they go. As this is the home of Geverspike and 254, they deign to remain here, but thank the Shields for allowing them to tag along on a very lucrative venture.

With their errands complete, the Shields of the Sorrowfell use the magic circle to return to Argent. Once there, they find the city to be bustling — the torrians have returned, and are busily attempting to restore the city of Argent to its previous glory. With that, the Shields go to the Guardian’s Tower to speak to Obanar.