David’s scouting report
On the way to the frost witches, I spotted a pair of big treants that seemed to be maybe border sentries or something like that. They were very well disguised as trees, and if you don’t or can’t see the face, they’re unnoticeable.
At the frost witches, there are groups of elemental swarms patrolling in a large circle, about 20 miles in diameter, around the witches’ main area. These elementals are no more than level 6, and patrol in groups of 4. I tried attacking a group to fulfil the optional part of the mission, but it turns out that they are accompanied by a very stealthy frost witch harpy (probably low paragon) that bloodied me on her first attack (though it was a crit). I abandoned that attempt, and after healing up I went into the area where the witches were. Aside from the harpies, the other witches I saw were elves, with white hair and grey clothing. I got to a central camp area, and there was a large (6 feet) cauldron made of ice, emitting a lot of coldness and dry ice type fog. The fog is at least partially magical. First, the fog showed a face that matched the description of the other type of elemental I was told about but hadn’t seen. Then another witch stepped out of the fog. This one had a slightly grey skin tone, and the others seemed to keep clear of her. She did something which sent a stream of ice/snow towards where my attack happened, and after a short time got some sort of response, and then looked straight at me, which I took as my cue to leave. I went around the witches’ area, avoiding the patrol groups, and started to look for the white dragon.
I found the white dragon first at a frozen lake, doodling impatiently in the ice. I made the hard DC knowledge check, so more details on that later. He then became more regal looking as a group of barbarians came up bringing coffers of treasure, and they also gave him a youngish member of their tribe, seemingly as a hostage of some sort. He flew off, trying to take a sneaky path back to his lair, but I easily followed him to it. The entrance to the lair is in a mound of snow in a clearing, by the edge of a hill. Outside the lair were a pair of treants (heroic tier), and a pair of very hard to see lizards (failed the knowledge check, but more info on them later) guarding the entrance. Inside the entrance, is an icy tunnel leading to a cavern in the hill. It seems to have originally been a lake bed that was converted into the lair. In the main cavern there were 3 or 4 more of the lizards (not sure exactly how many), an ice witch, a barbarian, a satyr, and the dragon and his new hostage. The witch was younger than the others I had seen previously, while the barbarian was older (mid-late 20s). There are 5 other openings from the cavern, making a rough hexagon. The one opposite the entrance is larger than the others and guarded by the lizards; I would guess that this is where the hoard might be. I didn’t check any further because I didn’t want to risk bumping into one of the lizards since I pretty much can’t see them, and can only barely tell where they are. However, I don’t expect there to be any traps or other trouble for the party aside from the creatures. There’s nothing of note within a 1-mile radius of the lair aside from random treants and barbarians as you’d expect.
I then headed to the Cairngorm Peaks to look for the blue dragon. Once in the mountains, it took 4 days to track the dragon back to its lair. It seems much more cautious and competent than the white dragon. I finally found the lair at the top of a particular mountain in the center of the peaks. The area is much more rocky, sharp, and inhospitable than the rest of the peaks. Thought there should be a path, but couldn’t find it, so I climbed up the eastern face of the mountain to where I had seen the dragon go. The mountain face is very well trapped against people climbing up. The rocks are prepped to slide and fall, some of the better handholds are trapped with runes, and the lip at the very top is set to crumble. Once at the top, there is a 25 foot cavern entrance, with a 40 foot ledge extending around it in a 180 degree arc. The ground leading to the cavern has lots of runes arranged like a minefield, and set up so that they can be seen by people leaving but not by people entering. With reading spectacles, I was able to get key words from the runes of lightning, thunder, and detonation. I travelled into the cavern, and for the first 25-30 feet there’s something funny or odd about the stone, but I wasn’t able to tell what. Past that, the cavern leads to a large chamber, 40 foot radius, roughly spherical with a few artificially made columns (stalactite and stalagmite meeting), and 3 other notable features. On the left, there is a small alcove containing a bas relief, and altar, bloody remains, a stone blade/dagger, used candle stubs (some sort of dark material), and a stone bowl half full of some liquid (orange rusty color). I didn’t touch anything there. On the right of the cavern, there’s a large opening (15 feet) leading to a smaller room (20×20×10 feet) with nooks in the sides that look like sleeping areas for medium sized creatures and a ritual circle in the middle of the room. Finally in the back of the cavern, opposite the entrance, is a smaller opening (large sized). This tunnel makes a sharp left followed by a sharp right before leading to a 60 foot straight section leading to another chamber possibly. In the straight section there are alcoves, and a the first alcove I found some sort of trap with runes and small openings. I couldn’t skirt around it, and I wasn’t sure if teleporting would trigger it, so I didn’t continue onward. While inside the lair, I never saw the dragon, the eggs, or the hoard, so I assume they’re farther in past those traps. I recommend that the party fly into this first chamber to bypass the explosive runes on the ledge, and then deal with the traps from there. Be careful though, because this dragon seems very cautious and very competent.
After leaving the lair, I followed the path down to see where it starts, but it also has a couple of traps on it, so it’s not a good way to get up. I then came back to Shadyvale to report in. The trip took 15 days.
Additional notes on the white dragon: It’s a level 10 solo brute. It has speed 6, fly 6, ice walk, cold resistance, and darkvision. It has action recovery, instinctive rampage, and savage blood (while bloodied it crits on 17+). Its bite attack is reach 2, doing cold damage with half-damage on a miss. Its claw attack can target 1 or 2 creatures, and does sharp and pointy damage. Its breath weapon does cold damage and slows save ends, miss for half and slowed until end of next turn, and it has bloodied breath. It has a tail slap as a free action when a flanking enemy hit it, which pushes. It has bittered vengeance as a free action when an enemy within 5 hits it, no attack roll, does damage and pushes. It only has one eye (the left eye appears to have been skewered out). It’s living a pretty luxurious life, and seems to think it’s way more awesome than it actually is.
Additional notes on the strange lizards: Medium sized. 6 legs, though front pair can be used more like hands if needed. The dragon seems to have them as pets/guards. Low int, good wis. They have very good stealth, and are practically invisible. With a moderate perception check you can see what square they’re in, but they blend into the background like a chameleon.
Spirit Meeting and misc.
New spirits of industry corresponding to where the artisans are.
Spirits of commerce, spirit of art school, resource spirit for things like lumber mill and quarry.
Commerce ones are pretty happy, but a bit miffed with the equipment rental thing, but see that is needed.
Happy with the bazaar and that tier/Recette are both there to run.
Stone cutter spirit wants special resources, and need more stone
Mine is happy about improvement, but also wants special resources, also need more.
Young and transitory artsy spirit floating around the school.
Art school one is happy that its needed. Pottery weaver is a bit discontent about limitation of options.
Spirits are happy that things got solved with hags. Unhappy it came so close to disaster, but overall since no major harm its ok.
General rumors: a few point of contention. Martial spirits pop up, barracks etc. They are holding off mentioning things until after skybolt stuff. Unhappy about force presence at the moment, town is under defended. Want some special units like the warlock one.
Float idea of special order of reagents from Moonstair 5000 within 3 months by Tear, seems to think this will work.
Should bring corpse back for better results to rorona.
If we attack the ice elemental patrol need to disguise it and make it look like someone else.
Will give the myconids one promote+ will owe us 900g
Make lilmiss Scorpion Carapace Armor +1 -1050g