Our story began with our heroes en route to the towering residence of the once-prosperous merchant Belavan d’Lyrandar, located high above in “the city of towers” known as Sharn. While these unique characters did not know each other before meeting on the airship skiff headed toward their destinations, they came to know each other in short order – the friendly human ardent Vestas Korde conversed with the quiet elven ranger Gi’lowm, his feline companion “King”, and the inquisitive gnome illuionist Lanyk. Only the engimatic human swordmage Zanna remained out of the conversation for the most part, preferring to take in the scenery silently.
The party reached the merchant’s residence in no time, stumbling into a lavish and quite unexpected house party… with no sign of Belavan to be seen. The characters conversed with the partygoers for some time, including a strange encounter with a woman dressed in exquisite black robes, before Belavan showed himself. He ended the gathering quite abruptly, imploring the heroes to follow him into his antechambers. While some followed him without further ado, others had a strange feeling about this situation – d’Lyrandar had reportedly just lost most of his fortune in a terrible investment in experimental airship elemental binding. How had he funded the party?
These suspicions were put aside for a time, as Belavan explained his plight to the adventurers: his youngest daughter, Ellyra, had disappeared a few days before in the run-down Duura district and offered our heroes gold for their service. Eventually they accepted, but not without some of our heroes successfully persuading Belavan to raise his offer.
Our heroes arrived in Duura not too much later, exploring the district for some time before settling at the nearby tavern – “The Pig and the Skull”. Expecting to spend quite some time there, they questioned some of the local and quite rowdy residents before Zanna stumbled upon the goblin Gerp who, inadvertently, revealed that he may have known where Ellyra had disappeared. Before the swordmage could get him to answer, he raced out of the bar, the heroes in close pursuit.
Despite some of Lanyk’s brilliant wizardry and the athletic pursuits of Gil’owm, Gerp was able to escape into Duura’s crowded alleyways… for the most part. The party followed him right into a large of gathering of members from the “Seven Red Dragons”, an organization that made its trade in slave and drug trafficking. The small group, led by the goblin Jib, were not about to let our heroes take their “friend” so easily.
Jib, his goblin comrades, and the human thugs that accompanied them were brought down easily and quickly by our heroes in the crowded alleyway, a mixture of arcane and martial mastery felling them easily. Gerp broke under the strain of combat, revealing to the adventurers afterward that the “Seven Red Dragons” were responsible for Ellyra’s disappearance and that he could lead them to the hideout.
More of Lanyk’s impressive wizardry and some sleuthing around by Vestas and Zanna allowed our heroes to infiltrate the hideout, and processing center. They were able to infiltrate the Dragons’ hideout with relative ease, disarming both traps and felling some of the tougher members of the slaving ring. Eventually, our heroes made their way to the heart of the hideout where they encountered the processing center’s overseer in a strange-looking goblin, his thugs, and an ebon-skinned necromancer.
Our heroes, led by Vestas’ inspiring psionic power, were able to defeat their foes and discover the truth about Ellyra’s disappearance: her father had actually sold her into slavery in a greedy attempt to finance himself. She was to be sent to Xen’drik to aid in the cause of the mysterious cult known as the “Cult of the Dragon Below”. These suspicions were only confirmed when the ebon-skinned necromancer was pulled down into Khyber while calling upon “his dark masters” to aid him in combat with our heroes.
Vestas, Lanyk, Gil’owm, and Zanna were able to deduce that Ellyra would be shipped off the next morning and made plans to ambush the slavers at the docks in Duura at dawn. As they exited the hideout though, another complication showed itself as Gil’owm was handed a card by a mysterious elf, who disappeared in a flash.
The card was of a drawing of a “white dragon”, only drawing more questions from our heroes as they continued to make plans to free Ellyra from the clutches of the “Seven Red Dragons” and the “Cult of the Dragon Below”.
TO BE CONTINUED.