Journey to Fate’s doorstep: The Bolts and Bows

A disguised Naismith and Nong climb their way up to the Trade Lanes district avoiding the bridge patrols below. They peer over the top curious how the Trade Lanes look since yesterday’s leveling. 4 man patrols are everywhere up and down the streets; the patrols are composed of 2 mages (and invisible dogs) and 2 assassins who wear non-Thieves Guild attire along with laughing masks covering their faces. The guard towers across the Trade Lanes now include mages who periodically fly out over the district using Truesite along their route. “This feels definitely like high alert,” says Nong.

The two quietly make their way to the familiar shack they inhabited previously. “No rug rats today,” says Naismith looking around. They duck for cover as passing patrols along the front and back streets of the shack, walk past. “We need too quickly and quietly make our way to the Northeast section of the district to find the Bolts and Bows,” says Naismith. As they dart in and out of shadows heading Northeast, another small invisible orb appears 10 feet behind Naismith who senses its presence along with Nong who sees it clearly. “It’s Lulach again!” says Naismith, who turns and stares in the orb’s direction. The two linger for 10 minutes waiting out the duration the orb can exist; after 10 minutes the orb disappears and the two continue Northeast.

Near the Northeast guard post, they find the Bolts and Bows, an abandoned shack with no windows and a single entry door. They time the mages flight patrol just right to run to the door which appears to be locked. Naismith looks it over, picks the lock and moves inside with Nong.

Inside is a cross between someone’s bedroom and a bar. The place is filthy but they look around. They eventually pull up the straw floor mat to reveal a 10 foot hole in the ground. Nong and Naismith descend, climbing 30 feet down to the bottom where it opens up to a 50 foot hole Northbound; a perfectly carved circular tunnel through the stone. “Definitely a beholder’s work,” says Nong. They stealth forward but fail to notice the pressure plate in front of them; lightning lights up the tunnel washing over both of them as they sizzle from the impact. They catch their breath after the stinging sensation wears off, look at each other and proceed forward; this time Naismith checks for traps along the way.

The end of the tunnel opens to a circular tunnel leading straight up 40 feet. Nong walks up the tunnel walls, while Naismith uses his cloak to fly up. Together they reach the top where the tunnel opens up West bound 10 feet and beyond, a perfectly carved out cavern. They stealth inside and notice: a chest 30 feet away, manacles bound to the opposite wall dangling on the floor surrounding a pool of dried blood and piles of bones and carcass remains. “It stinks in here,” says Naismith as he approaches the chest. “Beholder stench!” comments Nong.

The chest is ornately decorated with gold at the corners and trim; it is locked but an easy pick for Naismith. As he opens the chest, he notices on the hinge inside a tiny purple symbol light up. Seconds later, the purple symbol explodes spraying necrotic energy all through the cavern and down the tunnel. Naismith and Nong are caught in the blast and suffer significant damage. What remains of the chest’s contents are a few platinum pieces strewn about the decayed floor. “There goes all of the clues,” a frustrated Naismith says to Nong. The two move back to the tunnel entrance and listen for intruders, but hear nothing.

Nong hears Mordrock’s voice over a Sending spell and responds describing where he and Naismith are, and how best to get here while avoiding the mage patrols. Twenty minutes later, Royce and Mordrock appear from the Ethereal plane rising up from underground. Together they sit in the cavern where Nong and Naismith learn how Mordrock and Royce appeared in the Heart district rising up from underground and immediately discovered by a passing patrol. Before escaping back underground, Royce noticed one of the mages leap up and fly towards a large mansion. “I think he flew towards the Xanathar’s mansion and we should head there soon,” says Royce.

Nong and Naismith nod in agreement, then sit back and tend to their wounds.