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Tales from the Yawning Portal

Game Master RyckyRych

Roll20 Link for TFTYP

Initiative:
[dice=Dave]d20+0[/dice]
[dice=Feyce]d20+2[/dice]
[dice=Lebris]d20+3[/dice]
[dice=Morgran]d20-1[/dice]

Experience:
1. Giant Rats (75)
2. Skeletons (150)
3. Goblins from multiple rooms (400)
4. Rescuing Elky (50)
5. Calcryx (450)
6. Hobgoblins and goblins (1000)
TOTAL = 2125 (531.25 per PC)

Treasure:
1. From Skeletons : 30 sp, 27 gp, 3 +1 arrows
2. From Goblins : Object worth 50gp, ordinary key, 5 vials of oil
3. From Calcryx : A dragon-shaped, jade figurine (worth 20 gp), a crystal goblet (5 gp), and twenty-four pieces of fine silverware (1 gp each).
4. From Hobgoblins and Goblins : TBD


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Scales of War - Yawning Portal Human Master of Dungeons [77] HP 1000 | AC 55 | Initiative -1 | Saves: ST +8 DX +8 CN +8 IN +8 WS +8 CH +8 | Perception +50 | Insight +60 | Investigation +70

All things roll here: horrors of midnights,
Campaigns of a lost year,
Dungeons disturbed, and groves of lights;
Echoing on these shores, still clear,
Dead ecstasies of questing knights—
Yet how the wind revives us here!
—Arthur Rimbaud

Amid the bustle of Waterdeep, within the Castle Ward where barristers, nobles, and emissaries battle with word and contract, stands an inn not quite like any other. Before there was a Castle Ward or even what could be recognized as an ancestor of the City of Splendors, there was a dungeon, and in that dungeon begins the tale of the Yawning Portal.

In ages past, the mighty wizard Halaster built his tower at the foot of Mount Waterdeep and delved deep into tunnels first built by dwarves and drow in search of ever greater magical power. Halaster and his apprentices expanded the tunnels they found, worming out new lairs under the surface for reasons of their own. In time, their excavations grew into the vast labyrinth known today as Undermountain, the largest dungeon in all of the Forgotten Realms. Halaster eventually disappeared, as have all his apprentices, but the massive complex he built remains to this day.

For untold years, the secrets of Undermountain remained hidden from the surface world. Everyone who entered its halls failed to return. Its reputation as a death trap grew to the point that criminals in Waterdeep who were sentenced to die were forcibly escorted into the dungeon and left to fend for themselves.

All of that changed with the arrival of two men, a warrior named Durnan and a ne’er-do-well named Mirt. The duo were the first adventurers to return from Undermountain, laden with riches and magic treasures. While Mirt used his wealth to buy a mansion, Durnan had different plans. Durnan retired from adventuring and purchased the land on which sat the deep, broad well that was the only known entrance to the dungeon. Around this well he built a tavern and inn that caters to adventurers and those who seek their services, and he called it the Yawning Portal.

Some of the magic Durnan looted on his successful foray into Undermountain granted him a life span that exceeds even that of an elf. And for decades Durnan left delving into Undermountain to younger folk. Yet one day, something drew him back. Days of waiting for his triumphant return from the dungeon turned to months and then years. For nearly a century, citizens of Waterdeep thought him dead. But one night, a voice called up from the well. Few at first believed it could be Durnan, but folk as long-lived as he vouched it so. The Yawning Portal had passed into the hands of his ancestors, but Durnan returned with enough riches for them to quietly retire. Durnan took his customary place behind the bar, raised a toast to his own safe return, and then began serving customers as if he’d never left.

Adventurers from across Faerûn, and even from elsewhere in the great span of the multiverse, visit the Yawning Portal to exchange knowledge about Undermountain and other dungeons. Most visitors are content to swap stories by the hearth, but sometimes a group driven by greed, ambition, or desperation pays the toll for entry and descends the well. Most don’t survive to make the return trip, but enough come back with riches and tales of adventure to tempt other groups into trying their luck.

However, not all adventures lead to the well. You are eager to make a name for yourself and the legend of the Sunless Citadel is well known locally, and stories indicate it is a place that holds promise for those intent on discovery, glory, and treasure!

Another party of adventurers, locally based, delved into the Sunless Citadel a month past. They were never seen again. Two human members of that ill-fated party were brother and sister, Talgen Hucrele (a fighter) and Sharwyn Hucrele (a wizard). They were part of an important merchant family based in the nearby village of Oakhurst. Kerowyn Hucrele, the matriarch of the family, is in the Yawning Portal and offers salvage rights to you and your team if you can find and return with the two lost members of her family—or at least return the gold signet rings worn by the missing brother and sister. She also offers a reward of 125 gp per signet ring, per character. If the characters bring back the Hucreles in good shape (of good mind and body), she offers to double the reward.

Assuming you accept, you have your first mission. Adventure awaits!


Scales of War - Yawning Portal Human Master of Dungeons [77] HP 1000 | AC 55 | Initiative -1 | Saves: ST +8 DX +8 CN +8 IN +8 WS +8 CH +8 | Perception +50 | Insight +60 | Investigation +70

Once you set up your alias and your PCs you can start interacting with anything you like, whether its looking about the Yawning Portal, try talking to Durnan or anyone else you may discover here, ask more about the mission you are about to undergo, or whatever else.


Male Half-Elf Sorcerer (Wild Magic) [1] | HP8 | AC12 | Init. +2 | Speed 30 | Svs: STR-1 DEX+2 CON+4 INT+0 WIS+0 CHA+5 | Perc+0 | Insight +2 | Inves. +0

Hail, good sir Durnan. What can you tell me about the legend of the Sunless Citadel?


Male Dwarf, Hill Cleric of life 2 | HP 19 | AC 18 | Initiative -1 | Saves: ST +2 DX -1 CN +3 IN+0 WS+5 CR+3 | Perception +3 | Intimidation +3 | Investigation +1

Ai laddy, I would want to be hearing about it as well.


Scales of War - Yawning Portal Human Master of Dungeons [77] HP 1000 | AC 55 | Initiative -1 | Saves: ST +8 DX +8 CN +8 IN +8 WS +8 CH +8 | Perception +50 | Insight +60 | Investigation +70

If you go under the Journal tab in Roll20 you'll see a Handout that shows a picture of Durnan.

The proprietor of the Yawning Portal is something of an enigma. Blessed with a seemingly limitless life span by treasures he brought back from his expedition nearly two centuries ago, he is as much a fixture in the taproom as the well.

Durnan is a man of few words. He expects to be paid for his time, and will offer insight and rumors only in return for hard cash. “We know the odds and take our chances,” he says, whether he is breaking up a card game that has turned violent or refusing the pleas of adventurers trapped at the bottom of the well who are unable to pay for a ride up. Despite his stony heart, he is an excellent source of information about Undermountain and other dungeons, provided one can pay his price.

I could tell you a bit, though words have a price.


Male Wood elf Rogue [2] HP 15 | AC 14 | Initiative +3 | Saves: ST +0 DX +5 CN +1 IN +2 WIS +1 CHA +1 | Perception +3 | Insight +1 | Investigation +2

Sidling up the the bar, Lebris says
Come now, Durnan, I'm sure that my friend, Feyce, would be willing to part with a couple of coins to hear your tales and knowledge.

Lebris lifts Feyce's coin purse and waits to see the reaction.

check: 1d20 + 5 ⇒ (20) + 5 = 25


Scales of War - Yawning Portal Human Master of Dungeons [77] HP 1000 | AC 55 | Initiative -1 | Saves: ST +8 DX +8 CN +8 IN +8 WS +8 CH +8 | Perception +50 | Insight +60 | Investigation +70

Durnan smirks, as if he's seen it all before. When I hold coins in my hands that is when your ears will hear words. My voice will not be heard before then. Now, excuse me while I tend to my paying customers. Durnan starts to walk away, not seeming to care if you try to stop him or not.


Male Half-Elf Sorcerer (Wild Magic) [1] | HP8 | AC12 | Init. +2 | Speed 30 | Svs: STR-1 DEX+2 CON+4 INT+0 WIS+0 CHA+5 | Perc+0 | Insight +2 | Inves. +0

Feyce tries to appeal to the old man's pride.

I guess we were mistaken. We were hoping to speak with the legendary Durnan. Durnan was such a genius that he recovered a huge fortune and would not have to resort to begging for pocket change from bar customers. This old fool obviously is a pretender and doesn't know anything.

Let's see if we can find somebody who has actually been inside Undermountain.

Persuasion: 1d20 + 5 ⇒ (12) + 5 = 17

Fergus is still my default until we finish that battle.


Scales of War - Yawning Portal Human Master of Dungeons [77] HP 1000 | AC 55 | Initiative -1 | Saves: ST +8 DX +8 CN +8 IN +8 WS +8 CH +8 | Perception +50 | Insight +60 | Investigation +70

Without looking at the stranger the man calmly answers, You can hope all you want, but without coin you won't get too far around here. A number of other patrons within earshot laugh and chuckle a bit, nodding their heads to each other as if confirming the fact that they know something you don't.


Male Half-Elf Sorcerer (Wild Magic) [1] | HP8 | AC12 | Init. +2 | Speed 30 | Svs: STR-1 DEX+2 CON+4 INT+0 WIS+0 CHA+5 | Perc+0 | Insight +2 | Inves. +0

You want coin?

Feyce holds up his coin-purse, snatched from the damned thief.

Start by pouring me a real drink, not this watered-down swill you serve to your regular mouth-breathers, and perhaps there will be something worth paying for.


Scales of War - Yawning Portal Human Master of Dungeons [77] HP 1000 | AC 55 | Initiative -1 | Saves: ST +8 DX +8 CN +8 IN +8 WS +8 CH +8 | Perception +50 | Insight +60 | Investigation +70

The man simply grins again. You'll get what I sell, when I'm paid for it. He again turns away from you, as if assuming the conversation is now over.

A moment later a man, short in stature in comparison to yourself, taps you on the shoulder. I could help but overhear, you know, about the job you took? The missing adventurers? I could tell you about the place they went to, and it'll only cost you a drink. Come, order me a drink and I'll tell you all I know. He then motions you to a nearby table, toward the corner of the tavern.


Male Half-Elf Sorcerer (Wild Magic) [1] | HP8 | AC12 | Init. +2 | Speed 30 | Svs: STR-1 DEX+2 CON+4 INT+0 WIS+0 CHA+5 | Perc+0 | Insight +2 | Inves. +0

Feyce looks shocked. You mean they serve actual drinks here? This stuff is only good for shining shoes.

Old man, you've been holding out on us! Where is the stuff that's actually fit for human consumption?

Feyce eyes the newcomer, sizing him up to see if he's just a deadbeat looking for a free drink, then smiles. Barkeep, another flagon of that horse-piss you serve for our new friend here!


M Human (Variant) Fighter [2] | HP22 | AC17 | Init. ±0 | Speed 30 | Svs: STR+5 DEX±0 CON+5 INT±0 WIS+1 CHA±0 | Athletics +5 | Insight +3 | Intimidation +2 | Perception +3 | Stealth +2

But that lies a quick path to the gates of The Citadel somewhere within the Undermountain, then Durnan has nothing to offer us. Nor, likely, this other little fellow. To Oakhurst!

Nods toward the door.


Scales of War - Yawning Portal Human Master of Dungeons [77] HP 1000 | AC 55 | Initiative -1 | Saves: ST +8 DX +8 CN +8 IN +8 WS +8 CH +8 | Perception +50 | Insight +60 | Investigation +70

Durnan waits to collect the 3 copper pieces from the sorcerer before pouring the drink. Looking at the human that just spoke up, Durnan grunts before speaking again. The Undermountain is its own challenge. What you seek is indeed near Oakhurst, as your employer already told you.

Durnan picks up a glass and begins to clean it with a fresh rag. Of course, you know nothing of the place that those fools delved into. Just as much as they knew, or so it would seem.

Assuming Feyce does pay for the drink, the stranger guzzles the beverage down as if he had not had anything of substance for quite some time, though the smell of alcohol on his person would suggest otherwise. He waves you closer. The Sunless Citadel is a bad place! Some foul magic comes out of there, and monster inhabit the halls! I'm sure of it, they must! Why else would no one return from there? The man pauses a moment to burp as he finishes his swill. That's what I know! Buy more another drink and I'll think of something else that I know about the place so I can tell you!


Male Half-Elf Sorcerer (Wild Magic) [1] | HP8 | AC12 | Init. +2 | Speed 30 | Svs: STR-1 DEX+2 CON+4 INT+0 WIS+0 CHA+5 | Perc+0 | Insight +2 | Inves. +0

Oh, sorry, I was unclear from the introduction above. Is the Sunless Citadel not within Undermountain, then? And is this a fact everybody knows?


M Human (Variant) Fighter [2] | HP22 | AC17 | Init. ±0 | Speed 30 | Svs: STR+5 DEX±0 CON+5 INT±0 WIS+1 CHA±0 | Athletics +5 | Insight +3 | Intimidation +2 | Perception +3 | Stealth +2

Yas. Kerowyn is here, and he and his kin are from "the nearby village of" Oakhurst.

Now, whether Oakhurst is "nearby" the Citadel, or "nearby" our present location in the Yawning Portal tavern (in Waterdeep), is difficult to parse. It appears on no map of Faerun I hold. Though, I seem to recall a decade ago I may have heard it was near Neverwinter... So likely the former.

Regardless, Oakhurst seems like the place to pick up the next box of text.


M Human (Variant) Fighter [2] | HP22 | AC17 | Init. ±0 | Speed 30 | Svs: STR+5 DEX±0 CON+5 INT±0 WIS+1 CHA±0 | Athletics +5 | Insight +3 | Intimidation +2 | Perception +3 | Stealth +2

Dave subtly gestures a sword stroke with his wrists and nods toward Castle Waterdeep, then leaves for the castle courtyard to find a training dummy.

He takes a moment before departing for Oakhurst to practice his Great Weapon Fighting style.

1d6 + 1d6 + 3 ⇒ (1) + (3) + 3 = 7

reroll that 1: 1d6 + 3 + 3 ⇒ (1) + 3 + 3 = 7

Dave frowns at his greatsword, curious if the RNG has been properly invoked.

Another swing then!

1d6 + 1d6 + 3 ⇒ (5) + (6) + 3 = 14

Better! And again!

1d6 + 1d6 + 3 ⇒ (6) + (3) + 3 = 12

One last blow!

1d6 + 1d6 + 3 ⇒ (1) + (3) + 3 = 7

reroll that 1: 1d6 + 3 + 3 ⇒ (1) + 3 + 3 = 7

Dave is unconvinced that 1's are being rerolled.

He remains at the courtyard until his party is ready to depart.


M Human (Variant) Fighter [2] | HP22 | AC17 | Init. ±0 | Speed 30 | Svs: STR+5 DEX±0 CON+5 INT±0 WIS+1 CHA±0 | Athletics +5 | Insight +3 | Intimidation +2 | Perception +3 | Stealth +2

Presumably, most of these will take place in Roll20, but I'd like to see how to handle it should it come up in PbP.

Still unwinded from light swordplay, Dave continues undaunted.

1d6 + 1d6 + 3 ⇒ (5) + (3) + 3 = 11

1d6 + 1d6 + 3 ⇒ (4) + (2) + 3 = 9

reroll that 2!: 4 + 1d6 + 3 ⇒ 4 + (6) + 3 = 13

1d6 + 1d6 + 3 ⇒ (5) + (3) + 3 = 11

1d6 + 1d6 + 3 ⇒ (6) + (1) + 3 = 10

reroll that 1!: 6 + 1d6 + 3 ⇒ 6 + (4) + 3 = 13

Satisfied, Dave sheathes his greatsword and awaits his companions.


Male Half-Elf Sorcerer (Wild Magic) [1] | HP8 | AC12 | Init. +2 | Speed 30 | Svs: STR-1 DEX+2 CON+4 INT+0 WIS+0 CHA+5 | Perc+0 | Insight +2 | Inves. +0

Feyce frowns at the realization that he was tricked into buying this reprobate a drink. Fool me once... Feyce sighs wistfully.

Using a cantrip, Feyce casts Minor Illusion to create an image of a tall, frothy, mug of ale in front of the stranger.

Amused at the thought of the stranger's disappointment upon discovering the ale to be illusory, Feyce then gathers his things and follows Dave out the door.


Scales of War - Yawning Portal Human Master of Dungeons [77] HP 1000 | AC 55 | Initiative -1 | Saves: ST +8 DX +8 CN +8 IN +8 WS +8 CH +8 | Perception +50 | Insight +60 | Investigation +70

Dave, if you haven't already check out the Discussion thread.

I'll wait to see if either of the others wishes to ask anything before departing for Oakhurst.


Male Dwarf, Hill Cleric of life 2 | HP 19 | AC 18 | Initiative -1 | Saves: ST +2 DX -1 CN +3 IN+0 WS+5 CR+3 | Perception +3 | Intimidation +3 | Investigation +1

Morgran picks his things and is ready to depart.


Scales of War - Yawning Portal Human Master of Dungeons [77] HP 1000 | AC 55 | Initiative -1 | Saves: ST +8 DX +8 CN +8 IN +8 WS +8 CH +8 | Perception +50 | Insight +60 | Investigation +70
Dave the Bellicose wrote:

Yas. Kerowyn is here, and he and his kin are from "the nearby village of" Oakhurst.

Now, whether Oakhurst is "nearby" the Citadel, or "nearby" our present location in the Yawning Portal tavern (in Waterdeep), is difficult to parse. It appears on no map of Faerun I hold. Though, I seem to recall a decade ago I may have heard it was near Neverwinter... So likely the former.

Regardless, Oakhurst seems like the place to pick up the next box of text.

Regarding the location of Oakhurst this is what I can tell you. In the adventure it suggests that in the Forgotten Realms that the Sunless Citadel is "in the foothills northwest of Thundertree." Oakhurst, your suggested starting point, is the nearest point of civilization to the Sunless Citadel itself. If you can find this Thundertree we'll have an idea of where we are.


Scales of War - Yawning Portal Human Master of Dungeons [77] HP 1000 | AC 55 | Initiative -1 | Saves: ST +8 DX +8 CN +8 IN +8 WS +8 CH +8 | Perception +50 | Insight +60 | Investigation +70

Assuming you are ready to move on,

The trek to the somewhat mysterious community closest to the Sunless Citadel is a village called Oakhurst. Most of its 900 residents (including outlying farms) are human, with a sizable minority of halflings and a scattering of other races.

Taking some time to scout around the village you can determine the more significant locations in Oakhurst. These locations, and the people to be found within them, include the following:

Village Hall. The center of government in Oakhurst includes the office of Mayor Vurnor Leng, a male human noble.

General Store. The village’s main source for supplies and merchandise is the general store, owned and operated by Kerowyn Hucrele, the female human noble that has hired you for your task back in Waterdeep.

Shrine. Advice, information, and healing are among the services dispensed at the village’s shrine. It is maintained by Dem “Corkie” Nackle, a female gnome priest of Pelor.

Jail. Next to the village hall is a stout building where miscreants serve their sentences. Oakhurst’s constable is Felosial, a female half-elf veteran. She commands a force of sixteen guards and four scouts who keep the village safe.

Blacksmith. Repairing and forging arms and armor is the job of the village smithy, Rurik Lutgehr, a male dwarf commoner.

Ol’ Boar Inn. Garon, a male human commoner, is the owner and barkeep of the Ol’ Boar Inn. He serves food and drink, and the place has a few rooms that visitors can rent.

You can purchase additional supplies, secure a room, gather information or listen for rumors, whatever you wish to do. If you are ready to go and elect to go straight to the Sunless Citadel you can do that as well.


Male Wood elf Rogue [2] HP 15 | AC 14 | Initiative +3 | Saves: ST +0 DX +5 CN +1 IN +2 WIS +1 CHA +1 | Perception +3 | Insight +1 | Investigation +2

Lebris will wander over to the jail to see what can be learned from the local constabulary, and any miscreants serving time.

Investigation: 1d20 + 2 ⇒ (18) + 2 = 20


Scales of War - Yawning Portal Human Master of Dungeons [77] HP 1000 | AC 55 | Initiative -1 | Saves: ST +8 DX +8 CN +8 IN +8 WS +8 CH +8 | Perception +50 | Insight +60 | Investigation +70

Not much can be learned from the miscreants as they seem to be too busy sleeping off their last bender. However, Felosial spends a little time talking with you and the conversation leads to a little bit of recent history about the town.

The goblin tribe infesting the nearby ruins sells a single piece of magical fruit to the highest bidder in Oakhurst once every midsummer. They’ve been doing this for the last twelve years or so. Usually, the fruit sells for around 50 gold, which is all the townsfolk here can bring themselves to pay a goblin. The fruit is always an apple of perfect hue and it heals those who suffer from any disease or other ailment. Miraculous really.

The man coughs and clears his throat before continuing. The folk here will sometimes plant the seeds that are found at the center of each fruit, hoping to engender an enchanted apple tree. When the seeds germinate in their proper season, they produce a twiggy mass of twisted sapling stems. But not too long after the saplings reach 2 feet in height, they are stolen, every time. The townsfolk as­sume the goblins send out thieves to ensure their monopoly of enchanted fruit. Can't say I blame them really.


M Human (Variant) Fighter [2] | HP22 | AC17 | Init. ±0 | Speed 30 | Svs: STR+5 DEX±0 CON+5 INT±0 WIS+1 CHA±0 | Athletics +5 | Insight +3 | Intimidation +2 | Perception +3 | Stealth +2

I can't imagine we have much else to purchase on 1st lvl coin.

I would like to know how far the Citadel is from here in Oakhurst though.

Investigation: 1d20 ⇒ 14

Regardless, we'll probably have to get a room for the night so we can set out at dawn.

So, Garon, I have no idea how the economy of Faerun works. 'Struth. How much for a room? Bearing in mind that this box of text suggests you don't see a lot of traffic...

Intimidation?: 1d20 + 2 ⇒ (13) + 2 = 15


Scales of War - Yawning Portal Human Master of Dungeons [77] HP 1000 | AC 55 | Initiative -1 | Saves: ST +8 DX +8 CN +8 IN +8 WS +8 CH +8 | Perception +50 | Insight +60 | Investigation +70

Talking with Garon nets a few bits of information.

The Citadel? Ah, you must be the heroes Kerowyn hired. I have rooms for you, arranged by your employer. He hands you keys to your own rooms and can use the The Ol' Boar Inn as your base of operations.

To get to that cursed place you gotta take the Old Road. Its a bit overgrown and winds through rocky downs, near stands of old-growth oak, and past the abandoned farms. I'd say its about seven miles or so from Oakhurst to the Citadel, but as you can guess it ain't an easy trek.

Garon then continues with a bit more information. I remember the last time anyone, aside from Talgen and Sharwyn, asked questions about the Sunless Citadel. About, hmm, twelve, maybe thirteen years ago, a grim-lookin' fella named Belak stopped by askin' about it. I remember him not because I thought he was a bit off but because he had a very large pet frog. Damnest thing I ever saw.


Male Half-Elf Sorcerer (Wild Magic) [1] | HP8 | AC12 | Init. +2 | Speed 30 | Svs: STR-1 DEX+2 CON+4 INT+0 WIS+0 CHA+5 | Perc+0 | Insight +2 | Inves. +0

Feyce is interested in shopping for a rapier and some leather armor -- for possible use later. Would that be the general store, the blacksmith, or both?

If it's the general store, Feyce will try to talk Kerowyn (or whoever is minding the store if she's still back in Waterdeep) to consider donating such items or selling at a deep discount for the heroes she hired to rescue her loved ones. I really could see these items being of great benefit in the rescue of your loved ones.

Persuasion: 1d20 + 5 ⇒ (17) + 5 = 22


Scales of War - Yawning Portal Human Master of Dungeons [77] HP 1000 | AC 55 | Initiative -1 | Saves: ST +8 DX +8 CN +8 IN +8 WS +8 CH +8 | Perception +50 | Insight +60 | Investigation +70

I'm sorry, I do not have those kind of items here. You'll need to speak with Rurik about that. Good luck getting a discount, more likely you'll pay a premium as he's the only smith for miles. She then turns to gather some things from the shelf behind her. However, I can give you these. A healer's kit and a climber's kit. You can't be too cautious.

Talking to her further she tells you a little more about the missing adventurers. You learn that the missing adventurers include a fighter (Talgen Hucrele), a wizard (Sharwyn Hucrele), a paladin of Pelor (Sir Braford), and a ranger (Kara­kas). Sir Braford was not a local, and he had a magic sword called Shatterspike.

Going to the smith, he does have a rapier available to see to you for 35 gold pieces. He also can sell you the leather armor for 15 gold.


Male Half-Elf Sorcerer (Wild Magic) [1] | HP8 | AC12 | Init. +2 | Speed 30 | Svs: STR-1 DEX+2 CON+4 INT+0 WIS+0 CHA+5 | Perc+0 | Insight +2 | Inves. +0

Thank you, milady. Do you happen to know what the adventurers were searching for?

Uh, what is starting gold nowadays?


M Human (Variant) Fighter [2] | HP22 | AC17 | Init. ±0 | Speed 30 | Svs: STR+5 DEX±0 CON+5 INT±0 WIS+1 CHA±0 | Athletics +5 | Insight +3 | Intimidation +2 | Perception +3 | Stealth +2

Starting gold is determined by your background. Typically 5-20gp.


Scales of War - Yawning Portal Human Master of Dungeons [77] HP 1000 | AC 55 | Initiative -1 | Saves: ST +8 DX +8 CN +8 IN +8 WS +8 CH +8 | Perception +50 | Insight +60 | Investigation +70

Whatever you use from the PH. You can start with the choices listed under your class and background or do it the old fashioned way and roll your starting gold on page 143. Using the former method would mean you surely will not have enough gold to purchase any weapons (unless one of the backgrounds give more than I recall).

Fame. Fortune. The usual things that those too young to truly understand the world believe that they'll find. Why they chose there, I don't know. No one knows for sure what the Sunless Citadel once was, but legends hint that it served as the retreat of an ancient dragon cult. I'm sure they though something of value must have been there.


M Human (Variant) Fighter [2] | HP22 | AC17 | Init. ±0 | Speed 30 | Svs: STR+5 DEX±0 CON+5 INT±0 WIS+1 CHA±0 | Athletics +5 | Insight +3 | Intimidation +2 | Perception +3 | Stealth +2

If you don't have your book handy, most provide 15gp. Hermit is only 5 (naturally) and other "Poor" backgrounds like Urchin and Outlander give 10gp. Noble has the greatest starting wealth at 25gp.

It's worth noting that SCAG has a Waterdhavian Noble that starts with only 20gp, but has a weekly stipend and general affluence in Waterdeep. Since the framing device of the campaign seems to be a tavern in Waterdeep, we may be spending some downtime there. YMMV.


Scales of War - Yawning Portal Human Master of Dungeons [77] HP 1000 | AC 55 | Initiative -1 | Saves: ST +8 DX +8 CN +8 IN +8 WS +8 CH +8 | Perception +50 | Insight +60 | Investigation +70

Usually stuff like this is taken to the Discussion Thread as you try to keep the Gameplay thread "clean" of metagame type stuff like character creation. No biggie though, we do it all the time. :)

To answer this, it would be safe to say that you "home base" will be Waterdeep for the reason you mention, unless a certain character has a reason to be stationed elsewhere. I'm not too concerned with that though.


Male Half-Elf Sorcerer (Wild Magic) [1] | HP8 | AC12 | Init. +2 | Speed 30 | Svs: STR-1 DEX+2 CON+4 INT+0 WIS+0 CHA+5 | Perc+0 | Insight +2 | Inves. +0

Feyce purchases leather armor for 15 gold pieces and stows it in his pack for a later date.


Male Wood elf Rogue [2] HP 15 | AC 14 | Initiative +3 | Saves: ST +0 DX +5 CN +1 IN +2 WIS +1 CHA +1 | Perception +3 | Insight +1 | Investigation +2

Morgran, can you check with the priest to see if he knows anything?
Feyce, are you headed for the blacksmith?

anyone got a good whatever to talk with the mayor


Male Half-Elf Sorcerer (Wild Magic) [1] | HP8 | AC12 | Init. +2 | Speed 30 | Svs: STR-1 DEX+2 CON+4 INT+0 WIS+0 CHA+5 | Perc+0 | Insight +2 | Inves. +0

Just left the blacksmith. I can check in with the mayor.

Feyce drops in on Mayor Leng to ask about the latest news, the Kerowyn family, and what's known about the Sunless Citadel.


Scales of War - Yawning Portal Human Master of Dungeons [77] HP 1000 | AC 55 | Initiative -1 | Saves: ST +8 DX +8 CN +8 IN +8 WS +8 CH +8 | Perception +50 | Insight +60 | Investigation +70

As the group decides to ask around for any extra knowledge about the town, the Citadel, and anything else of interest the party discovers these nuggets of information:

Concerning travel to the Citadel, The Old Road skirts the Ashen Plain, a lifeless area.

DC 15 Intelligence (History):
You happen to recall that the desolation of this area is attributed to the long-ago rampage of a dragon named Ashardalon.

The mayor has been told that the cattle herders don’t graze their stock too far afield these days. They’re frightened by stories of new monsters that maraud by night. From time to time, cattle and people who have gone out alone at night have been found dead the next day, bearing dozens of needle-like wounds. No one has seen the creatures that cause this mayhem, nor do they leave a discernible trail.

Lastly, you are told that sometimes the goblins offer a different apple at midwinter. This apple is corpse-white and poisonous, even to the touch. No samples of either the red or the white apple are to be had, however its a few weeks from midsummer presently.

That's pretty much all of the information left to gather. If you guys have your characters ready for go I will proceed to the start of the actual adventure! I'll wait until later today to get that going, just in case you have any last minute details to take care of.


Male Half-Elf Sorcerer (Wild Magic) [1] | HP8 | AC12 | Init. +2 | Speed 30 | Svs: STR-1 DEX+2 CON+4 INT+0 WIS+0 CHA+5 | Perc+0 | Insight +2 | Inves. +0

History: 1d20 ⇒ 2 Just because I might have been an acolyte doesn't mean I was a studious acolyte.

Have any of the town's cutters or surgeons undertaken to study the "needle-like wounds" to attempt to determine their origin? If not, are there any newly departed our cleric might be able to examine?


Male Wood elf Rogue [2] HP 15 | AC 14 | Initiative +3 | Saves: ST +0 DX +5 CN +1 IN +2 WIS +1 CHA +1 | Perception +3 | Insight +1 | Investigation +2

I'm ready to go


Scales of War - Yawning Portal Human Master of Dungeons [77] HP 1000 | AC 55 | Initiative -1 | Saves: ST +8 DX +8 CN +8 IN +8 WS +8 CH +8 | Perception +50 | Insight +60 | Investigation +70

The mayor shakes his head. Nobody seems to be able to figure it out. As far as new instances, I haven't heard of any. I'm sure the beasts that were killed recently have long been destroyed. If I hear of any I'll be sure to let your man know so he can take a look if he wants.


M Human (Variant) Fighter [2] | HP22 | AC17 | Init. ±0 | Speed 30 | Svs: STR+5 DEX±0 CON+5 INT±0 WIS+1 CHA±0 | Athletics +5 | Insight +3 | Intimidation +2 | Perception +3 | Stealth +2

Dave rests throughout the remainder of the day and offers to take the watch as the rest of the party sleeps at the inn.

Absent complications, he rouses them at dawn for the 7 mile trek to the gates of the Citadel.


Scales of War - Yawning Portal Human Master of Dungeons [77] HP 1000 | AC 55 | Initiative -1 | Saves: ST +8 DX +8 CN +8 IN +8 WS +8 CH +8 | Perception +50 | Insight +60 | Investigation +70

I think its safe to move on. If we need to do something we can retcon it.

At dawn the party begins their trek toward the ruin. The Old Road passes to the east of a narrow ravine. At the road’s closest approach to the cleft, several broken pillars jut from the earth where the ravine widens. Two of the pillars stand straight, but most lean atop sloped earth. Others are broken, and several have apparently fallen into the dark depths. A few similar pillars are visible on the opposite side of the ravine.

A sturdy, knotted rope is tied to one of the leaning pillars on this side of the ravine.

The ravine runs for several miles in either direction, you would estimate an average depth and width of 30 feet. At the point where it most closely intersects the Old Road, it widens to 40 feet.

The pillars are worn and broken, and graffiti in the Dwarvish alphabet covers most of them.

If anyone understands Goblin:
After translating the letters from Dwarvish you recognize the inscriptions as warnings and threats against potential trespassers.

DC 10 Intelligence (Investigation) or Wisdom (Survival):
The area in and around the pillars has hosted many small campfires, some of as recent as a month ago. Someone went to some effort to hide the evidence of the camps from casual scrutiny.

The rope tied to one of the leaning pillars hangs down into the darkness of the ravine. Judging by its good condition, the rope couldn’t have been tied there any longer than two or three weeks ago. From the edge of the ravine, older and weathered handholds and footholds can be seen carved into the cliff face. These appear to be goblin-carved. The descent is about 50 feet to the ledge below.

You surmise the party that you are looking for went this way judging what you can see from the rope. Once you are ready to descend, what order will you be going down in?


M Human (Variant) Fighter [2] | HP22 | AC17 | Init. ±0 | Speed 30 | Svs: STR+5 DEX±0 CON+5 INT±0 WIS+1 CHA±0 | Athletics +5 | Insight +3 | Intimidation +2 | Perception +3 | Stealth +2

Dave's resilience and melee prowess should protect him if cornered alone, so he descends first.

Athletics Check: 1d20 + 5 ⇒ (5) + 5 = 10


Male Half-Elf Sorcerer (Wild Magic) [1] | HP8 | AC12 | Init. +2 | Speed 30 | Svs: STR-1 DEX+2 CON+4 INT+0 WIS+0 CHA+5 | Perc+0 | Insight +2 | Inves. +0

Investigation: 1d20 ⇒ 17
Feyce relates his findings to the others. Looks like we're not alone. Several of these campfires appear to be no more than a month old, and somebody took pains to try to hide their presence here from others. We had best be cautious.

With that, Feyce descends the rope after the fighter.


Scales of War - Yawning Portal Human Master of Dungeons [77] HP 1000 | AC 55 | Initiative -1 | Saves: ST +8 DX +8 CN +8 IN +8 WS +8 CH +8 | Perception +50 | Insight +60 | Investigation +70

With the rope being knotted and without the stress of danger, no check will be needed... yet.

Dave leads the party down the rope. A sandy ledge overlooks a subterranean gulf of darkness to the west. The ledge is wide but rough. Sand, rocky debris, and the bones of small animals cover it. A rough-hewn stairwell zigs and zags down the side of the ledge, descending into darkness.

As soon as Dave lands on the surface of the ledge, three hungry-looking giant rats emerge from the rubble, looking angry!

Initiative!:

Dave: 1d20 + 0 ⇒ (20) + 0 = 20
Feyce: 1d20 + 2 ⇒ (7) + 2 = 9
Lebris: 1d20 + 3 ⇒ (1) + 3 = 4
Morgran: 1d20 - 1 ⇒ (4) - 1 = 3
Rats!: 1d20 + 2 ⇒ (1) + 2 = 3

1. Dave, Feyce (on rope, 10' above ledge) and Lebris (on rope, 20' above ledge)
2. Giant Rats
3. Morgran (on rope, 30 feet above ledge)

I'm no climber, but I'd assume you'd have at least a little spacing between yourselves as you go down. Climbing down the rope is 1/4 speed, or you could jump down to the ledge.


M Human (Variant) Fighter [2] | HP22 | AC17 | Init. ±0 | Speed 30 | Svs: STR+5 DEX±0 CON+5 INT±0 WIS+1 CHA±0 | Athletics +5 | Insight +3 | Intimidation +2 | Perception +3 | Stealth +2

Seizing the initiative with unusual alacrity, Dave charges headlong into the midst of the rat pack, denying them safe access to the rest of his party.

He strikes the jaundiced (yellow) rat first

ATTACK!: 1d20 + 5 ⇒ (1) + 5 = 6

... and fails to connect.


Scales of War - Yawning Portal Human Master of Dungeons [77] HP 1000 | AC 55 | Initiative -1 | Saves: ST +8 DX +8 CN +8 IN +8 WS +8 CH +8 | Perception +50 | Insight +60 | Investigation +70

Dave, despite all of his practice yesterday, discovers a flaw in his technique as he tries to slice at the ground-level enemy!

1. Dave, Feyce (on rope, 10' above ledge) and Lebris (on rope, 20' above ledge)
2. Giant Rats
3. Morgran (on rope, 30 feet above ledge)


Male Half-Elf Sorcerer (Wild Magic) [1] | HP8 | AC12 | Init. +2 | Speed 30 | Svs: STR-1 DEX+2 CON+4 INT+0 WIS+0 CHA+5 | Perc+0 | Insight +2 | Inves. +0

Feyce realizes that at lousy first level a fall from even this height could be near-fatal which is stupid.

DM -- can I hang from the knotted rope with one hand and use my arcane focus to cast Fire Bolt with my other hand while still on the rope? This would be equivalent to holding a shield with one hand and casting with the other, and PHB p. 203 suggests that, unless the spell has a somatic component (which Fire Bolt doesn't), then I should be able to do this.


Scales of War - Yawning Portal Human Master of Dungeons [77] HP 1000 | AC 55 | Initiative -1 | Saves: ST +8 DX +8 CN +8 IN +8 WS +8 CH +8 | Perception +50 | Insight +60 | Investigation +70

I would say you can but you would be attacking at Disadvantage, since you are trying to make sure you do not slip from the rope and fall to your doom.

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