The Ashen Crown, the Lords of Madness, and the Queen of Death

To Graywall

In order to avoid a pointless visit to pawn shop that may not exist, Aurora admits to Yeraa that she has the circlet. The party offers to help Yeraa acquire all the pieces of the crown. Yeraa is suspicious of the party’s motives, but the party manages to hide the fact that they are working for the King’s Citadel. Aurora convinces Yeraa of their trustworthiness by telling her about the prophecy of Arik Blacktree, in which it was revealed that should the Ashen Crown fall into the wrong hands it could mean the doom of this world.

Tinker discovers that, curiously enough, his creator, the goblin artificer Sprot, and Tinker’s “brother”, the warforged Bearing, are travelling with Yeraa. Sprot has been hired by Yeraa to do some work for her, though Sprot has not explained exactly what he was hired to work on.

In order to test both the party’s might, and to see whether they have the gods’ favour, Yeraa challenges the party to an amalorkar, a traditional goblin ritual duel. The party emerges victorious, though Yeraa nearly succumbs to a magic poison cast by Dex’s bow. Thanks to the quick action of Tinker and Dex’s uncle, Yeraa survives. Though rueful of her defeat, Yeraa holds no grudges and accepts the party’s aid.

Still harbouring suspicion of House Lyrandar and Arasinya, Yeraa initially refuses to take Arasinya’s airship, opting instead to travel by caravan. After about ten days of travel on the road, the carvan reaches the capital of Breland, the city of Wroat. En route, everyone is subject to several hobgoblins plays and operas, Dex befriends the cook Tikulti (who is secretly an agent for the King’s Citadel), Tinker has a chance to spend time with his family and wrestle with questions of free-will versus determinism, and Arasinya may (or may not) have rescued an injured raven.

Finally, relenting, Yeraa chooses to take Arasinya’s airship, the Second Wind, from Wroat to the city of Graywall in the monstrous nation of Droaam.

Droaam is a land peopled by those unwelcome within the borders of any other nation. Ruled by warlords kept in line by the terrifying Daughters of Sora Kell, the nation is always on the verge of anarchy.

The land beyond the Byeshk and Graywall Mountains has always been a realm of mystery and menace. Though claimed by Breland, it was never truly settled by humans. Western Breland instead remained a land of deadly monsters- a place where questing knights could seek their fortunes battling savage beasts. During the Last War, monstrous bandits made increasingly frequent forays across the mountains and into western Breland. ln 987 YK. King Boranel pulled his subjects back from the mountains for their own safety. In that same year, three hags the Daughters of Sora Kell rose to power within Breland’s ceded territory. Declaring that land to be the nation of Droaam, the hags united the monstrous warlords under their rule.

Graywall is a charming city, a haven for war criminals, exiles, and bandits, governed by Xorchylic, the mind-flayer. The town is a conduit between Droaam and the rest of Khorvaire. Though the majority of its inhabitants are gnolls, orcs, and goblinoids, the foreign quarters, known as the Calabas, is built to cater to humans and other travellers to the east. Legitimate merchants come to Graywall to trade for goods and ores that are found only in Droaam, but the city is also the centre of a thriving black market. The Calabas is policed by House Tharashk, a half-orc dragonmarked house that mainly works as bounty hunters.

From his contacts in the city, Bogs learns that Demise and the Skullborn have been spotted in city. Worse, the city is hosting Graeb Khukri’s 300th birthday party. Graeb Khurkri is a minotaur who runs an international crime syndicate known as the Daask from the city of Graywall. To celebrate, many of the ranking members of her criminal empire have come to the city, including her son, Graeb Shanks, head of the Sharn branch. Graeb Shanks has put a price on Maltassar’s head that Maltassar would rather not see collected.

Using the circlet, Aurora discovers that Lurtaan’s cord, the final piece of the crown is located beneath the Roar, a market square in the heart of the foreign quarter. Unable to find any signs of an entrance, the party sets up a large tent and pretend to be a part of the night market. Outside the tent, the party sells their junk and makes a tidy profit. Inside, under the cover of the noise of the crowds and hawkers selling their wares, Yeraa and her band dig. Soon, the goblins have uncovered a shaft dropping down into the ruins.

Yeraa argues that the party should man the stall while the goblins descend to recover the legendary cord, but the party insists on going down with her. Instead, Tikulti alone remains behind to maintain their cover, keeping on his person one of a pair of sending stones so that he and Bogs can remain in contact. Into the depths, plunges Dex and the rest climb down after…

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