3rd Day of Meloramensis – Part III

Hogar’s Journal (Translated from Giant)

Year 781 of the founding of the City

3rd Day of Meloramensis – Part III

Thunderspire Mountain – The Severn Pillared Hall

Rendil lead us out of the storeroom and back into the corridor.  After only a short while we emerged into an enormous cavern that disappeared into darkness both above and in front of us.  Torches mounted at regular intervals in the wall spat warm light into the void revealing squat stone buildings occupied by countless people of all shapes, sizes and races.
To our left a huge column descended from the infinite blackness of the ceiling all the way to the floor, a natural monolith of lime and water.  It gave silent testament to the power of Moradin and the immense age of the cavern.  This was presumably one of the “Seven Pillars” of the hall repeated another six times further into the gloom.
We followed Rendil past a wainwright’s shop to be absorbed into the wall of noise caused by the presence of so many people.  The sound of people buying, selling, greeting, chatting, arguing, consoling and joking, sometimes all at the same time, echoed from the invisible walls of the cavern. 
The very first building we passed turned out to be a customs house populated with the usual eagle eyed tax collectors.  Despite the hundreds of people milling about, the ogre on duty still managed to spot that six new faces had entered the hall.  He lumbered over to us in the company of a warder, an animated bronze statue of a minotaur.  He demanded ten gold pieces from each of us as a tax to pay for the upkeep of the hall.  I was ready to tell them where to go but Vic and Glen must’ve been intimidated by the presence of the warder as they immediately started negotiating the figure down to a still extortionate five gold each.  Apparently this pays for the mages to protect the hall, which is clearly all they protect with slavers running amok in the labyrinth itself.
Our purses suitably lightened we were free to move around the hall and set off once again for Rendil’s tavern.  It is a rather grand establishment of two stories.  If was contructed of stone and sprawled out to encompass several single story extensions and outbuildings.  By comparison to the Lucky Gnome in Fallcrest it was a palace.  We passed under the painted sign of a yellow half moon and through a warm, welcoming entrance into the jollity of the Halfmoon Inn. 
We emerged into a large room with a bar running all along the left hand side.  Several round tables were arranged throughout the room with squat stools surrounding them.  At Rendil’s arrival a plump middle aged female halfling came bustling from behind the bar, anxious to know where he had been these past days.  She was, to say the least, unhappy with his explanation and disgusted with his rash decision to try and follow the slavers.  The telling off that she gave Rendil was nothing however when compared to the welcome she gave to us when she heard of our efforts in his rescue.  We were immediately ushered into a private dining room at the back of the tavern.
Food, ale (wine for Old Vic) and Mrs Halfmoon appeared at regular intervals throughout the evening together with stories of the Bloodreavers and the misery they have been bringing to the halfling population within the mountain.  The Bloodreavers are a gang of slavers, mainly hobgoblins but also some lesser goblins, Halflings and assorted others.  They operate from deep within the labyrinth where the influence of the mages does not reach.  Their hidden base is somewhere called the Chamber of Eyes which everyone knows about but few know its location.  No sooner had Vic expressed an interest in dealing with these Bloodreavers than Mrs Halfmoon declared that she had a patron by the name of Terrlen Darkseeker who would know the location of the chamber if anyone did.
She sent a serving boy to fetch this Terrlen to the tavern.  A short while later she introduced him to us.  A middle aged man with a deeply lined face and haunted eyes joined us.  He earns his living by guiding trade caravans across the Vale Road and exploring the labyrinth for treasure.  It turns out that he does indeed know the location of the Bloodreavers’ lair and has agreed to lead us there for a fee of 42 gold (a figure agreed after some negotiation from Glen).  He is going to meet us here first thing in the morning.

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