Sometimes the luck of the battle just turns against you. If you venture into icy mountains, you might run into a frost giant. If you run into a frost giant, you might die. It was tough, but it was simple. Milon liked that thought.
Thorismund had been a good companion during long horseback rides and a fearsome ally in any fight. All the more reason not to let his passing away be in vain. The halfling’s hunch to let the fearsome giant live turned out to be a good one, and the information he had given the party shed a whole new light on the story magistra Nadiya had been trying to sell them earlier.
He wasn’t hoping for much from a descendant of Choral the Cruel’s to begin with, and when they had met up with her in Varnhold, the magistra had wholeheartedly lived up to his expectations: arrogant and distrustful, she had made no secret of her contempt towards their party in general and him in particular.
She had told them some strange story about this mountain town and observatory called Skywatch, which had been enveloped in this exceptionally powerful and impenetrable magic sphere right around the time when the bulk of her family had mysteriously disappeared. Any attempt at getting through this sphere had supposedly resulted in cruel, fiery death for those who had tried. Still according to the magistra, Natala Surtova (a niece of our current regent) had hastily but temporarily disappeared at the same time. Apparently, this was enough for the current leading lady of the Rogarvia family to surmise a conspiracy against her and her relatives. There may well be truth in her speculations, but the party’s dealings with the magistra so far hadn’t exactly made her look as an innocent victim of circumstance either.
Offering her their help against their better judgment, they had teleported to the frosty heights of Skywatch together with the magistra to find out more about what had been going on there during recent years. At night, she had wandered off on some business of her own and literally vanished in thin air, leaving the young halfling, who had been following her in silence, startled.
After the party had set up camp in what seemed to be a ruined inn just outside the forcefield, lady Stonemark and Thorismund fatally agreed to take the first watch of the night. A fearsome blizzard arose while Milon and the rest of them were sleeping. When they were violently woken up by Hegelinde, it was all they could do to run out into the storm just in time to see their sturdy dwarven forgemaster slain by a fearsome giant and his wolf. Spurred on by Thorismund’s cruel demise, the rest of the party managed to chase away the beast and knock down its master.
Tied and gagged inside, the frost giant had seemed surprised to still be alive when he woke up hours later –little did he know, Hegelinde and Milon had only just managed to keep their companions from executing their mournful vengeance on him. However, his own suspicions toward them turned out to be more than justified when he told them his version of what had been going on at Skywatch during the past decade.
Almost as soon as the sphere had appeared around the city, a group of about twenty wizards had turned up to investigate its nature. The hostile weather conditions had soon forced them to give up their attempts, but one of them had kept coming back regularly, randomly slaughtering the giant’s tribe on her visits. This mage turned out to be none other than the magistra, whom the giant subsequently confirmed he had seen penetrate into the Skywatch sphere unharmed. This explained why Milon had lost track of her the previous evening, and where she had been off to.
The big friendly giant was let go. A funeral pyre was erected and Thorismund’s soul sent on to Thorag in keeping with his beliefs. Magistra Nadiya returned from her nightly excursion and offered a cool condolence. Did she know what had really happened during her absence?
They teleported away from Skywatch.
Seconds later, Milon finally found himself in New Stetven.
Down to business. Time to talk.