Wave Echo Cave lives up to its name. Throughout its passages you can hear the sound of waves crashing against the walls. This place was clearly the location of a great battle between the Dwarves and Orcs as there are corpses strewn throughout its many halls.
Deep in the mine, in what appears to be a dwarven temple, we find The Black Spider and her companions camped out. The bugbears were easy enough to deal with as they mindlessly lined up for us to destroy one by one. The drow that escaped us in Cragmaw Castle was with her along with 4 more giant spiders. These foes proved the most difficult we have faced so far. We were blessed to have two very powerful scrolls that I was barely able to comprehend. Though, I feel that, with just a little more experience, I may have been able to cast those spells on my own.
We decide to search the rest of the caves to ensure that there arent any more of The Black Spiders minions lurking about. Just outside of the thrown room there is a dwarf called Slint who is tied up. He was part of the Rockseeker group and was taken by The Black Spider to help her find her way through the caves.
Eventually we find the Forge of Spells. This forge had been used by the humans to harness the strange magics emanating from the caves. There is a beholder who called himself Spectator protecting the forge. Thankfully he did not see us as a threat and allowed us to examine the room.
Confident that the forge is safe we return to Phandalin. Malcer will take up his post as sheriff. Gimble will probably set up a poison shop, though its hard to tell with him, communication is not his strong suit. As for me, I feel I must quest to find the source of my power.
This rundown castle was infested with grick, goblins, hobgoblins, bugbears, and an owl bear. Deep in the castle we find Klarg and two drow. They have a dwarf held captive, who they have obviously been torturing for information. We defeat Klarg and one of the drow but the other escapes. Our interrogation of Klarg confirms that he has been working for the Black Spider to help her find Wave Echo Cave. Klarg killed Grunden and has left his brother Nurow for dead. Certain that we have all the information we can get from Klarg, Gimble runs him through.
Reidoth revives Nurow who confirms everything that Klarg told us. Based on what weve found in the castle we can assume that Grundens traveling companion, Sildar Hallwinter, found the same fate as Grunden. Nurow will guide us to Wave Echo Cave but asks that we help him return to Phandalin first. We agree, after this journey we could use a good nights rest as well.
After a nice long rest we spend the day in Phandalin. Habin reassures us that the Roughians have not been a problem and Glasstaff is going to be transported to Neverwinter very soon. Habin, who is enamored with Malcer, offers him the position of Sheriff of Phandalin. Malcer accepts the position though he will see to the destruction of the Black Spider first. The rest of the day is spent selling, trading, and purchasing gear. Now fully equipped, we are ready to head to Wave Echo Cave.
After a good night sleep at the Sleeping Giant, we head to the abandoned Tresendar Manor, the hideout of the Redbrand Roughians. Within its dilapidated walls we encounter and dispatch several fiends; everything from the likes of skeletons and bugbears to a strange magic using creature called a nothic. Working alongside these beasts were the Redbrand Roughians. Deep in the hidout we find the leader of the Roughians, Glassstaff. After a brief skirmish, Glassstaff surrenders. Among his possessions we find a dwarfs journal and a letter from the Black Spider that reads:
My spies in Neverwinter tell me that strangers are due to arrive in Phandalin. They could be working for the dwarves. Capture them if you can, kill them if you must, but dont allow them to upset our plans. See that any dwarven maps in their possession are delivered to me with haste. I am counting on you , Ilarno. Dont disappoint me.
With Ilarno in our custody, we return to the townmasters hall for questioning. After some probing we learn that Klarg, a bugbear, is helping to supply muscle to the Roughians. He is doing this under the command of The Black Spider. As we suspected, The Black Spider is a drow who is searching for Wave Echo Cave. Unfortunately, Ilarno didnt know where Klarg or The Black Spider could be found. Habin has agreed to see that justice finds Ilarno.
Now that the Redbrand Roughians are eliminated we decide to have a drink at the Sleeping Giant. Here we are meet with a heros welcome. We agree that our next objective should be locating Grunden. As we are discussing how to do this, a halfling called Qelline Alderleaf introduces herself and says that she may be able to help. She doesnt know where Grunden is but a friend of hers, the druid Reidoth, may be able to help. He is currently living in the abandoned city of Thundertree. We will set out for Thundertree at first light.
A Dwarf called Grunden Rockseeker, commissioned my companions, Malcer Windrivver, Gimble Nackle, and I to transport a shipment to Barthen’s Provisions. It seemed a simple task, so we agreed. With the exception of a poorly planned goblin ambush, we arrived in Phandalin unscathed.
Upon arriving at the provisions shop, Barthen tells us that Grunden has been captured. I wonder if the goblins had anything to do with this. We decide to get some food at the local pub. On our way we are accosted by a group of boys claiming to be the Redbrand Roughians. We brush them off and proceed to the Sleeping Giant.
We find a table and order some soup and wine. When the soup arrives so do the Roughians. After a quick altercation we have two of them tied up and the other two, well, are no longer a threat. We order more soup and a round for the bar on us.
With our bellies full, we question our captives. Clearly out classed, our new friends are more than willing to chat. It sounds as though the Roughians are being run by the wizard Glassstaff. He is by no means the leader. He takes his orders from something called The Black Spider. The Redbrand Roughians are roughly 20 strong and work from the abandoned Tresendar Manor.
The townmaster, Habin Wester, arrives at the bar. He expresses his gratitude and agrees to house our captives in the town jail. He begs us to help rid the town of the Roughians. We agree. Malcer, always concerned with following the law, asks to be deputized. The townmaster does so.
We decide that it would be best for us to get a good nights rest and investigate the Redbrand lair in the morning. Rescuing Grunden is going to have to wait.