From the Tales of Athragar Cormaeril -
Flamerule 20 – 21
Following our victorious rout of the orc war band the night before, the guards set out at daybreak to seek aid for the beleaguered town of Nightstone. Thick gray clouds hid the sun, but a humid heat clung to the air so it seemed fitting our quest would lead to the remote caverns known as the Dripping Caves. Before us the wide, dank mouth of the caverns yawned… at least ten men abreast and tall enough for even a giant to easily pass through. Indeed, Barnabas uncovered the footprints of a giant among the relatively tiny and more numerous goblin tracks confirming we likely would face one within the Dripping Caves.
It was only moments later that we encountered a massive specimen of an ogre, immersed within a natural mud bath within one of the larger chambers. Before the giant could even react we were upon him. Alone of course, he stood no chance against our combined might. Even before his body hit the floor however his ogre-wife burst from hiding to strike at us as a band of goblins surprised us at our rear. Here we found ourselves – wedged between murderous goblins and an enraged she-ogre. Fortunately we also found Lady Luck was with us still. Within the blink of an eye Sandy had ensorcelled the goblins putting them into an enchanted sleep while Barnabas’s aim was true once more and felled the ogress. After the brief skirmish we soldiered on, making our way through the winding corridors of the cavern until finally we discovered where the foul monsters had imprisoned the desperate townsfolk.
After rescuing them, most of our company returned to the surface world as we guided the thankful townsfolk to safety. The intrepid ranger Barnabas remained behind, determined to scout out the remaining tunnels and ensure we were not followed. As he tells it, he wisely avoided the most treacherous dangers of the cavern’s depths, but as luck would once more have it no doubt, he stumbled upon a very young woman who had seemingly been held aside from the other prisoners. She was none other than Daphnie Featherstone, a noble lady in waiting from Nightstone. Single-handedly Barnabas delivered the young lady from the perilous caverns reuniting her with the others who had survived the ordeal.
Content no enemies would once more surprise our flank, we led the townsfolk back to their homes. Although our victory yielded little in the way of treasure, I knew we had saved not just the town, but its soul as well. Its people were now safe and free to rebuild their lives. Without Lady Nandar to oversee the reconstruction of the town the people of Nightstone looked to the owner of the Nightstone Inn, Morak Ur’gray. He seemed a fair and honest dwarf and remained optimistic even in the face of the destruction left in the giants’ wake.
Among the stories he and the other townsfolk shared with us was one of a mage from Moongleam Tower in Everlund, known as Krowen Valharrow. They told us that he had just recently passed through Nightstone and spent time there studying the town’s history and the Nightstone itself before continuing on his way to Goldenfields. Perhaps it was not mere coincidence that this mage also claimed to be a scholar on the ways of giant-kin. It was as I told my companions, fate calling.