The Shadows of Tyranny

Into the Frontier
The Arrival in Loudwater


Swordcaptain Nymeria Norathem was not impressed with the frontier town as she stepped off the River Maiden and onto the thin Loudwater docks. Fisherman pushed their way along the snow dusted planks without noticing the Cormyrian in her dress uniform. Father Morgrim pushed past her without noticing.

“Land at last!” Morgrim huffed as he made his way off the docks.

Nymeria, along with her superior officer, had come to know and like the dwarven priest of Kelemvor as they had made their way up the Delimbyr River toward Loudwater. Morgrim was a sullen sort, with a disposition appropriate for a priest of the God of Death. It had been over a week of combined sailing and riding on the journey from Suzail, and they were ready to finally be done with their journey and execute their mission. The town’s magistrate had requested Cormyrian aid, and Cormyr needed allies in the frontier. Her small dispatch, lead by Lionar Sirron Vel had been dispatched to asses the town, and make way for the small regiment that was two day’s journey behind them.

“Yes, we should find the tavern and get out of the cold.”

Before she could get the words, out, a dwarven dockworker carrying what looked like an enormous trout over his shoulder almost walked straight into her. They narrowly avoided collision, and Nym seized the opportunity.

“Excuse me, can you direct me to the local inn?”

“No,” the dwarf grumbled on past. A moment past before the bewildered Eladrin solider turned back to her dwarven companion.

“I think he was lying,” she said.

“Probably, yes.”

In the ship’s cabin, Sirron Vel look out of the window at his two bewildered companions. Sirron was extremely pleased not to have to be sailing any longer. An Earthsoul genasi belonged on the ground, feet planted firmly. He turned to First Sword Taldred.

“We’ll be on land the next four or so days. I trust you’ll be looking after the ship in that time.”

“Of course, sir.”

“Good man.”

Sirron made his way out into the cool winter air and off of the River Maiden. The dockmaster was soon able to direct him to the local inn, called the Green Tankard. He took off toward the town’s center, with Nymeria and Morgrim in tow. Passing a rather lurid pub labeled the “Fisher’s Friend”, he found the gate that separated the docks from the rest of the town.

Passing the manor house, general store, and assorted townspeople going about business on a cold day, he found the Green Tankard. Already through the windows he could see a dragonborn barkeep and a tired patron slumped head first on his table. Already the heroes were entertaining sullied thoughts of the boring frontier life.

The three of them stepped into the tavern and were greeted warmly by the gruff dragonborn from behind the bar. It was a cozy inn, dim with winter daylight at this time of day. There was a crippled man telling excited stories to a young halfling, and at the table by the window they noticed that the figure with his head against the table appeared to be in the garb of a wizard, with a peaked hat and dark robes. Nym looked at him with the suspicion he might be dead, and Morgrim was half-ready to begin consecration on the spot.

“Ay there, the name’s Marsh, what can I do for you today?” the barkeep hesistated, “Say, you look like foreigners. Looking for a room?”

Taldred was making rounds below deck when he spotted the wizard dressed elegantly and in a trance by the cargo hold. She had been up all night pouring over tomes, and was recovering in the customary way of the eladrin.

“Ah, excuse me, Miss Myinal?” Taldred said from a safe distance. The wizard snapped to attention, complete with the majority of her recuperation.

“Yes, Swordcaptain”?

“You’ll forgive me for interrupting you, but you should know that the Lionar just left a few minutes ago with Lieutenant Swordcaptain Nymeria and the priest.

“How very rude of them. Thank you for informing me,” she responded with displeasure. She retrieved her book of spells from beside her, carrying under one arm while her other hand rested lightly on a ceremonial longsword, and made her way out to search for her companions.

In a brief exchange, Sirron had arranged for a week’s stay, and payed with Cormyrian gold from his military allowance. Marsh offered to take their things up to the rooms, and Sirron led the other two out into the roads once more. Morgrim looked up the road past the other two, noticing a figure making her way briskly along the road, out of place in her colorful, almost regal attire.

“Look, the wizard,” he said, pointing.

“Ah yes, Myinal!” said Nymeria.

Just then, there was a loud bang, and a sort of earthshaking impact that strikes at both the ears and the body as many townsfolk were thrown to their knees. A section of the southern wall was suddenly shrouded in rolling clouds of dust. It was clear that this area was the origin of the noise, and very shortly the dust cleared, displaying the demolished section of wall from which the explosion had happened.

Already, goblins were pouring through, and like the military sorts they were, Sirron and Nym were running with their longswords drawn, the dwarven paladin in tow.

The goblins were everywhere, chasing down civilians with swords drawn. They’d entered through the hole into somewhat of a town square, where there was a deep well and a few parked carts. Sirron was in the midst of them in a heartbeat, and they set upon his with a flurry of swords and spears. For a moment he endured their attacks, before planting a foot firmly on the ground in front of him, giving his ankle a twist and knocking the attackers near him on their backs as the ground rumbled.

Meanwhile Nymeria, who was a swordmage of natural talent and training, worked the fingers of her free hand in a delicate twist of sigils, creating a powerful arcane shield. As goblins advanced upon civilians, she leaped through the air, disappearing in a tangle of arcane energy and reappearing in front of them, teleporting quickly in order to cut down the invaders.

A small group of them, however, made their way right for a particular shop doorway. They arrived there quickly, and were soon attempting to break down the door. Morgrim saw them make their way past, and pursued with sword in hand. Calling in dwarvish for Kelemvor’s aid, he charged briskly into the fray, cutting the first few down. They pushed him back quickly, and made haste to surround him, but another thunderous clap resonated around him. This time, the source was Myinal, who arrived holding a luxurious arcane orb in her hand, summoning a wave of thunder that threw the goblins far, stunned or dead.

"How This Story Came To Be Told"

I’m going to tell you the greatest tale of Faerun, and how the world of Abeir-Toril entered a New Age. My name is Vistra Alarazhad formerly of Calimshan, and I write this to you and all generations from the library of Candlekeep. Let it be known that I knew these heroes as friends, and that it is in their memory that all should know the truth of their deeds.

This is the story of how Sirron Vel, Morgrim Ironhide, Nymeria Norathem, and their allies along the way fought vigilantly for the freedom of our world. Between the pages, I’ll describe their struggles from they day their journeys began on the western frontiers of Faerun. From there, they’ll travel all of the wildest lands of our realms, from the heights of The Greypeaks, to the scorched deserts of Calimshan, eastward to the hallowed barrens of Thay, and even across the oceans to Returned Abeir.

As it is known, these heroes fought all manner of beasts and tyrants. From most sinister Dragons of this world, to the evil cults that in those old days plagued the lands, to the dreaded undead hordes of the Shadowfell and beyond. In those old days, brave Sirron and his friends stood against all of the greatest forces of oppression, saw many wars, and met many great leaders and evils.

But why this tome? Why should this story be believed, over all the tall tales and bardic songs? Why should this stand as a true history of these events, in the sea of legends and fables?

Because I traveled alongside these heroes as they journeyed to The Tomb of the Astronomer. I have traveled to the Grandfather Tree and learned from Provost Cenador the songs of the Convening of the Council. Mage Royals Leucis and Kethember have both visited me to recount the tales, and yes, I even studied with Curuvar the Brazen here at Candlekeep.

Above all, I know this tale, for it is my own. I may not have put the spear in the chest of Kiaphraxias, Scourge of the High Moor. I did not seize the Kraken’s Tear on it’s voyage to Skelkor. I did not raise my hand toward Morgrim Hellmantle, Wearer of Purple, and bathe him in the searing light of Kelemvor’s Justice. And I was not the one who gave my life so that Returned Abeir could be free. But I was there, every moment. I knew these heroes.

And I loved them. This is their story.

-Loremaster Vistra Alarazhad

Candlekeep, 1551 DR


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