Secrets of Imaskar
Mulhorandi and Imaskari ruins dot the landscape in and around the area known as the Raurin Desert, which was once the seat of the mighty Imaskar Empire. One such ruin, the fort of Maskana, lies on the southern edge of the Plains of Purple Dust, a little closer to the Dragonsword Mountains than to the Giant's Belt. This Mulhorandi fortress was built just before the fall of the Imaskar Empire, to guard the Mulhorandi against incursions by their former masters. Eventually the danger of such attacks passed, and the fortress fell into disuse and then ruin. Over the centuries, the ruined fortress has been thoroughly explored by adventurers, scholars, and looters, who ferreted out whatever secrets it may once have held. Now the site is nothing more than a curiosity to most.
But one secret of Maskana remains undiscovered. The Mulhorandi ruin was built atop an older Imaskari fortress that had fallen into disuse centuries earlier. The ancient Mulhorandi wanted to keep track of this location because it contained a number of permanent extradimensional spaces that they hoped to utilize someday. But in the chaos of the uprising, the old ruins were forgotten.
The ruin is decorated with Mulhorandi pictographs in an almost aggressive way, as if the people who built it wanted to leave no room for Imaskari influence. One of these drawings, however, contains an oddity that has gone undiscovered until recently. An explorer named Jarval Keth recognized one of the symbols, which had always been assumed to be Mulhorandi, as the work of the Imaskari. Excitedly, he returned to Gheldaneth to investigate further. There he ran afoul of Tyaral, a cleric of the dead god Bhaal, who sought a source of power to help revive his deity. Upon hearing of the ancient Imaskari image, Tyaral captured Jarval Keth and tortured him until he revealed all he knew. Then Tyaral set off for the ruin to investigate the explorer's story.
Unbeknownst to Tyaral, Jarval Keth has escaped confinement, stowed away on a ship sailing west, and made his way to the area where the heroes are resting between adventures. Upon noticing that he was gone, Sithena Tinzon, Tyaral's chief inquisitor and torturer, immediately set off in pursuit with three minions. Through her powers of persuasion, she learned which ship Keth had boarded. By hiring a faster one, she reached Keth's destination ahead of him. Now she lies in wait to kill Keth as soon as he surfaces.