By Rand Sharpsword
Sharpsword, collector of bits of travel and geographical information,
brings you further details about the Dalelands. Rand provides these to
supplement the information found in the Forgotten Realms Campaign
(Hamlet, 350): The elves call this village, which lies just a few
miles northeast of Lake Eredruie, Ssrenshen. Tree homes camouflaged
behind artfully shaped foliage can be hard to miss, but few who make
it to the village miss the Bonepile -- burnt ground containing the skeletons
of a hobgoblin raiding party, owlbears, and other nuisances.
Like the folk of
Bristar, the elves here serve in the Swords of Deepingdale, the Dale's
unofficial and seldom-gathered militia. The Moonrise Hill elves are
more standoffish than the elves of Bristar, partly because they have
to defend their territory against treasure seekers seeking driftgems
blown off the mountain above the village, Moonrise Crag. The mountain's
rock is weak and porous, and small, precious rubies trapped in the rock
break free when the ferocious west winds slam the mountain's crumbling
east face. Adventurers and others seeking the gems are not welcome visitors
to Moonrise Hill and should practice their arrow-dodging skills.
Named for the venerable elf who tended the temple while the other elves
retreated to Evermeet, the Starglance Temple to Corellon Larethian has
become a rallying point for elves who wish to retake Cormanthor. The
temple blends into the forest near Highmoon, but few who do not worship
Corellon can sense its presence as they pass.
This long, tree-studded hill, north of Highmoon and east of Moonrise
Hill, is named for an ancient battle, the last stand of human hunters
against a bugbear army. In truth, the hill's history goes back before
humans arrived in the Dales, to the first horrible battles between elven
armies -- a conflict between the elves of Hlaarr and those of Yhendorn.
Hunter's Down is no simple hill -- it is a grave barrow containing the
massed dead of both sides of that ancient war.
The elven dead do
not trouble the outside world much. They are still guarded by twelve
great elven liches, known as baelnorns. The baelnorns spend most of
their time debating the mistakes made by the elves who lie buried beside
them. Brave souls who enter the tombs by diving through a magic pool
hidden in a thicket atop the hill can sometimes trade information on
events in the outside world for minor magic items or healing. Others
who strike the baelnorns as determined tomb robbers find only death.
Fall of Stars:
One of the few establishments in Faerûn founded as a club exclusively
for adventurers, this Harrowdale town establishment offers everything
from dragon's blood whiskey to information to a safe place to sleep.
Town, 1,400): Like Chandlerscross, Scarsdeep has soared while Scardale
Town has fallen. Scarsdeep's contribution to the partnership is to mount
constant patrols along both the borders of the Dale and in the
vicinity of Scardale Town. At some point, Scarsdeep and the other Scardalefolk
might want to take back Scardale Town, but for the moment they've decided
that the city is more trouble than it's worth and aim to keep its problems
contained within its walls. The most difficult part of their task is
to ensure that boats seeking passage past Scardale can do so safely.
Luckily for the
citizens of Scarsdeep, and for Scardalefolk in general, the military
council that rules the town has a "benevolent protector."
The town's new temple to the full Triad -- Torm, Tyr, and Ilmater, worshiped
under the same set of three connected roofs -- proclaims Scarsdeep's
intention to take the high road.
Deeper than Honor:
The PCs are asked to referee a mortal duel between a member of the Sun
Soul monastery and a monk of the Broken Ones who has traveled north
to Tasseldale from Sembia. Fighting the duel breaks the laws of both
the monasteries, but the combatants cannot settle their dispute in any
other fashion. Hence, the PCs are asked to arrange a hidden location
for the duel -- something that will escape the monastery's notice until
it is too late. If religious obligations are not enough, the monks promise
the magic items of the losing fighter to the PCs for their aid. If the
consequences do not seem confused enough, yet, throw in the post-duel
wrinkle that the survivor converts allegiances and assumes the responsibilities
of the monk she killed, unavoidably turning the PCs' part in the affair
into semipublic news. Were the PCs motivated by simple greed? One of
the monasteries might want to examine that question in punishing detail.
An otherwise level-headed ranger, who has previously shown no interest
in the Woodsman's War, wants to hire the PCs to break into an Archenbridge
tavern to retrieve colors taken from Tassadrans in the last few tendays.
Has the ranger developed new civic pride, or is another factor prompting
his interest? Did the Archenfolk find something better than mere colors
when they looted a defeated Tassadran woodsman?
to the Forgotten Realms
main news page for more articles and news about the
Forgotten Realms game setting or check out the Forgotten
for a lively discussion of all aspects of the Forgotten Realms