Forgotten Keep and the Western Lands

The Black Stone Valley

The party continued through the large steel gate and up the covered canyon road. Along the trail they noticed a large opening above and to the right. As Rolf moved into position to throw his grappling hook into the opening a stalagtit fell from the roof of the cave striking him with a glancing blow. It then started to crawl on strange small legs up the side of the wall.The group killed it easily then Rolf investigated the opening above but it split into smaller crevices and he turned back and continued up the road. After a few hours of travel the canyon opened up into a grassy valley.

The valley contained a few dozen small stone buildings, many built into the side of the black stone walls on the edges of the valley. Several of the buildings had smoke coming from their chimneys and small gardens around them. A thin layer of smoke hung above the valley and a large herd of goats could be seen grazing along the right side of the valley. At the far end of the valley less than a mile away an impressive spire stood with an engraving of a double edged ax on its face. The right side of the valley contained huge stone steps that lead up to a large stone structure with a door the height of at least three humans. The left side of the valley was broken by a canyon disappearing out of view from the party. Rolf stopped abruptly at the sight of the spire and began katas with his ax. As the rest of the party arrived they began marching through the center of the valley along the stream that flowed from the waterfall at the far end of the valley. As the group moved across the valley they saw small creatures peering out at them from buildings. They were slight smaller in stature than a dwarf, pale in complexion and had very large pale eyes. One of these creatures was spotted running up a path along the side of the huge stairs and disappeared into the mountain near the giant stone door. In the center of the valley the party stopped the wagon and approached one of pale creatures in the doorway of a stone structure. As they approached the creature shut door and did not respond to their greetings.

The door atop the huge steps opened and three creatures stepped out of the door. One was a small pale dwarf like creature, the other a huge bear like creature covered in feather like fur. Its face was like a birds with two large eyes and a sharp beak. The third was a huge grey skinned humanoid standing almost twenty feet tall. He spoke in heavily Mari but seemed intelligent and perhaps even cultured. The bard offered to trade a tale and played him a epic tale. The giant returned the favor telling of the valley and how he and the Durru inhabited it for many years now but there used to be dwarfs here years and years ago. The party offered to give him one barrel of spices in exchange for letting them stay and agreed to kill the creature that was taking his goats in exchange for safe passage through the valley. When he asked how they got past gate guards Rolf said there were no guards present at the gate.
One of the pale creatures lead the party to a cave opening in the canyon on the left side of the valley and the party carefully entered making there was through a natural cavern that brought them to a cut passageway. As they discussed what to do a giant worm with four tentacles surrounding its beak like mouth grabbed Theoren and began pulling him into a crack in the wall. As the party rushed to aid him and attacked the creature the bard put it to sleep with a lullaby and Theoren was freed.



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