Kraken, Winston and Alangleas had traveled to Phandalin in search of adventure and coin. Arriving in the small village they heard the Townmaster, Daran, welcome them to town and give them directions on how to help Phandalin and the surrounding area. They were about to head to the Stonehill Inn for a meal when a good sized deer came walking into town. That was not the odd thing. The odd thing was that the people in town did not pay much attention to a deer walking through the middle of town. The deer stopped in front of the three travelers and started to walk out of the town. It walked a few feet and turned its head back like it was checking to see if they were following it. Alangleas said I think we should follow it and so the three did deciding that depending on how much time this would take they could come back to the Stonehill Inn for a late lunch. They followed the deer for about a mile and a half outside of the city. The deer suddenly stopped and laid down in front of an old stature. Suddenly the companions realized this was not a statue but it was as druid that was meditating. The druid stood up and stretching himself he said: “You have finally arrived. I have been waiting for you to get here. Been waiting for 50 years for you.” The three looked at each other, not sure what to think. The druid continued, “I am Lanoril and I am in need of adventurers like yourself to help me. A brother of mine has gone missing and I fear he is in great danger in a place most evil, The Sunless Citadel. Alangleas had heard of the Sunless Citadel. There were rumors of cultist occupying it many years ago. Cultists who worshiped Tiamat the evil goddess-queen of chromatic dragons. Alangleas told the others what he knew about the Citadel and then asked if Lanoril how long had his brother been missing. Lanoril replied he has not been heard from in little less than a year. I am not sure why Belak my brother went in search of the Citadel. I am only concerned from not hearing from him in less than a year because he went to the Sunless Citadel. Will you go with me to the Sunless Citadel and help me find my brother? Kraken and Alangleas were ready to go. Winston was hesitant and asked Lanoril how did he know that we would coming this way. Lanoril explained that he knew as the earth knew that this was the only path for you. Winston said okay, let us do it. Alangleas asked if they could go back into Phandalin to get a lunch at the Stonehill Inn. Lanoril said that was a good idea. It had been years since he had been in a city. They walked back into town, entered the Inn and sat at the bar and waited to place their orders. A young woman was running around trying to get orders in that it as awhile before she came over to them. She said she was in hurry and they needed to give their orders right away. She said we have stew. What would you like to drink? She said that it would be 2 silver for the meals. Lanoril reached into a pouch and brought out plants and berries to eat. The waitress told him no outside food. He reached into the same pouch and pulled out a gold piece. She took the gold piece and said enjoy. The stew was not that great but it was a warm meal that was better than the hard tack trail rations they had been eating for 3 days. The gold piece also covered their rooms for the evening. They had decided to spend the night and get on the road early the next morning. It would take about 2 days to get to Oakhurst a small village near where the Sunless Citadel was supposed to be located.
They left the next morning at the crack of dawn. They made good time only stopping to eat. They realized about 12 hours into their journey that they were not tired. So after a brief bite to eat they decided to continue through the night. They were still making good time with little to no fatigue. At about the 36 hour mark they were starting to get weary and decided it was time for a long rest. Lanoril said he was watch over the others as they rested. As he finished speaking a large buck entered their makeshift camp and laid down and motioned for Lanoril to rest as well. Lanoril at first declined but then agreed and all four companions fell asleep. They awoke around 11pm refreshed and ready to go. They set out and made good time once again. They became tired quicker this day but still made good time. They made it to Oakhurst as the sun was setting. They did not see many people in the town as they made their way to the Ol’ Boar Inn. The barkeeper was surprised to see them as they entered. He asked what they would like to drink. Kraken asked for his finest mead. The barkeeper said it may not be the finest but it all I have. Winston asked for ale. The barkeep replied that this may still be ale. Winston could not tell if there was foam on the beer or it it was mold. He drank it anyway. Lanoril and Alangleas asked for water. Stew was on the menu here as well but it was much better than what they had in Phandalin. He asked them why they were in town. They replied they were looking for someone that had gone to the Citadel. The barkeep replied do not say the name. And you should not go to “It”. Nothing good comes from there. No one that goes, comes back. Lanoril explained that they had to go as his brother had gone there and had not been heard from in about a year. Seeing that he was not going to convince they not to go he made arrangements for them to have rooms for the night. The group wanted to see what else was in town so they made their way to the Constable and Jail building. The Constable, a half elf woman, greeted them and asked what their business in town was. They noticed in the jail behind were several kobolds. It seemed odd but they did not mention them at first. Lanoril again explained that they were going to “It.” She replied, oh more folks going to the Citadel. They come to town, they stay for the night or a day or two, head to the citadel and never seen again. And these darned kobolds always coming town from the citadel selling these odd apples. White apples. Red apples. Some gave life, other gave death. People would buy the death ones but I try to stop those that look like him(nodding towards Winston) from doing so. Sometimes there are clerics that buy them ones that give life. I think the cleric at the shrine here in the village may have bought some of them. No idea why Vurnor, I mean the Mayor, wants to keep the kobolds locked but it is his decision. They asked where a they could get provisions. She said there is a Blacksmith just down the road. He may have what you are looking for. As it was late in the evening they decided to go see the Blacksmith first thing in the morning. As they left the Inn they could hear the hammer hitting the anvil so they knew he was already awake. They approached and without looking up the dwarven Blacksmith said “Provisions or information. They both will cost you.” Kraken tried to intimidate the dwarf but it got nowhere and soon he was asked to leave the blacksmith’s shop. Kraken waited outside while the others stayed inside. Lanoril gave the blacksmith a silver piece and the blacksmith asked what they needed. They told of how they needed to go to the Citadel. The dwarf said “Every rumor you have heard, it is true. The undead, the kobolds, the screams. It is ALL true. Best for you to stay away. No one comes back from the Citadel. I should know…My brother decided to go there. Looking for treasure, looking for something I do not know what it was. But he never came back. I have no idea what happened to him but I imagine it was not something good. Lanoril said his brother went there as well. And that we had no choice but to go and see if he could be found. He then added we will keep an eye out for your brother while we are there and if we find him we will bring him back. The Blacksmith said thank you but I am afraid even if he does come back he will not be the same, he will be changed and not in a good way. As they were leaving he said bring rope. Lanoril bought some rope as back up to the rope that Alangleas had. Between them they had 125ft. They all left and went to see the Mayor, Vurnor Leng. Vurnor said Let me guess, you are hear to go to the Citadel and you want to know more about it and our village. It is all true whatever you heard. They talked a bit more and when they mentioned the Shrine, the Mayor said the cleric there, her name is Corkie. She may know more about the Citadel. Alangleas said he though that getting a blessing before heading to the Citadel certainly could not hurt. The others agreed. The Mayor said as they were leaving to be careful on the Old Road. Oh and to bring rope. They were about to go when Kraken said he had been in the wrong with the Blacksmith and he wanted to go back and make things right. He went back and knocked on the door. The blacksmith came and opened it and asked what he wanted. Kraken spoke to him in dwarven, apologizing for the way he acted and that he heard his brother had gone missing in the Citadel. He would makes sure to look for him and bring him back if he could. The blacksmith said though that it was not his charge, he was able to do so, it would be appreciated. Kraken left the shop and they all went to the Shrine. as they approached they saw many signs advertising Blessings and Healings and other temple services ahead at the Shrine to Pelor. Alangleas recognized Pelor and the others a little about him. They entered the shrine and a gnome woman dressed in cleric robes came forward. Corkie the Cleric spoke excitedly. “More adventurers going to the Citadel! Fantastic you are in the right place. Everyone that gets a blessing from me returns from the Citadel. Those that do not return did not get my Blessing. I have other services as well but the Blessing is the best. Lanoril and Winston turn around and walk out. Alangleas and Kraken stay and decide to get the Blessing. She said she needed to prepare the holy water and other things for the spell and that the cost would be 1 silver each. Kraken and Alangleas paid the silver and kneeled to be blessed. She gave them her blessing saying “May the moonlight from Pelor bless you…” as she sprinkled holy water on their shoulders. Hearing this Alangleas rose up, thanked her and left quickly with Kraken right behind. When the group was all together Alangleas said “Lanoril and Winston you both were correct. I do not know what god she is a cleric for but it is not Pelor. Kraken looked at him odd and Alangleas continued, Pelor is god of healing and the sun, not of the moon. I am not going back there again.
They had been to all of the places in town that they felt they needed to so they set off down The Old Road being careful as they walked. Alangleas cast Goodberry and handed each one of them a berry. It would not only heal them but would give them all the sustenance they would need for the day. In about an hour or so they say a large ravine. Along the ravine there were many ruined columns. On those columns they saw lots of graffiti mostly in dwarven but some in what they thought was goblin but since no one understood goblin they were not sure. They then came upon a column with sturdy rope tied around it with the other end going down into the ravine. Alangleas did not trust the rope tied to the column. He asked Winston to check it for trap but there were none. They brought up the rope and untied it from the column. Kraken cut off 30ft to take along with him. The tied their own rope around the column and then one by one they descended into the ravine assuming this was where the entrance to the Citadel as located. They saw more graffiti down below. There was a passageway to the west that led into a pathway that had stairs going down. Before they could get to the stairs they were attacked by 3 giant rats. Lanoril shifted into a dire wolf and leaped forward attacking a rat. Winston lunged with his short sword. Alangleas cast Shillelagh on his quarterstaff giving a rat an attack of opportunity but it missed. Kraken did not even get an attack in as the rats fell one by one. The group went on down the pathway and down the stairs until it opened up into a good sized courtyard with a tower at the far western end. There was a door in the tower. As they got closer they saw dead goblins with spears stuck into them near the door. As they were walking across the courtyard a pit trap was located in about the certain of the room. Lanoril looked into the pit and saw two skeletal corpses that thankfully did not animated. They avoided the pit and went straight for the door. The door was not locked and not trapped so they entered the tower. There were two other doors in the tower. But something caught Winston’s eye just off to the left of the door they came in. It was a secret door but he was not sure how to open it. Lanoril looked and saw a stone area to press but as he pressed it a pin fired out from a trap hitting him but only doing minimal damage. But it did open the door. Instead was a small room with several arrow slots around it. At those arrow slots were skeletons and these animated! They turned to attack with red glowing eye sockets. Winston positioned himself to use his short bow firing off a quick shot. Lanoril still in dire wolf form rushed ahead to attack. Alangleas used his Shillelaghed staff to attack and Kraken got an attack in this time. Soon all of the skeleton were destroyed. They looted the skeletons getting some 60 arrow, silver and gold pieces and 3 special arrows in their own carrying cases. All of the arrows went to Winston and they decided to split the coins at a later time when it was safer.