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Fantasy Dragon Heist

Examine it thoroughly.
All traces of humor escaped the half-elf as she stared out at the turned over and destroyed room. The Xanathar symbol painted in blood -- presumably fresh blood -- on the wall was especially concerning. But what was most bizarre was that somebody had clearly been looking for something. Or, by the looks of that struggle and blood, someone. Being careful not to touch or take anything that could directly incriminate her, Iselas fanned out across the room to look for clues.
While you are turning over every crate and box you can find, a figure fills out the doorway.

A tall, graceful woman in an white and gold robes smiles at you, her long, silver hair falling to the small of her back.

"If you've come looking for Fenerus Stormcastle, I'm afraid you're too late," She says. "It appears Xanathar has gotten to him first. Fenerus had something in his possession that I desire. Perhaps you can help retrieve it."

- Ask who she is.
- Observe her carefully (roll d20 for perception check).
- Ask about the details.
- Something else.
Observe her carefully (rolled 16).
Bewildered blue eyes blinked up from the wooden crate that Iselas had just turned over, peering curiously at the unfamiliar figure that now filled the doorway. This was, admittedly, a bad situation for somebody to walk in on, and yet this stranger immediately took it in her stride. Did she see them come inside or did she see the fight? Iselas squinted at her now, examining her more closely and with obvious suspicion.

"Oh, and what would that be?" Iselas asked, curiosity getting the better of her. She wondered what kind of person trusted a stranger to repossess their belongings.
Observing the woman carefully you remember why she looks familiar. She is one of the Lords of the Open Council. You've seen her on paintings and posters and once at a festival. But her name escapes you. You also notice that there's something a little bit strange about the way she talks, and her mannerisms seem a bit awkward at times, like someone not used to their own skin. Yet you notice this only briefly and everything seems normal in the next moment.

"My name is Lareal Silverhand, stranger." The woman speaks, her voice clear and commanding, like someone used to being in charge. "Fenerus has in possession something that he shouldn't. A sentient magic item called the Stone of Golorr that knows the location of Dagult Neverember's vault. If you retrieve it for me, I would use it for the good of Waterdeep. The funds would go a long way with restoring the city's economy." She smiles. "And you would be in favour of the Open Council."

- Agree.
- Refuse.
- Pretend to agree.
- Ask for more information.
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Pretend to agree.
"Hmm, I suppose that we could do that. It would be fun to be on the good side of the council for once," Iselas trailed off with a faux thoughtful hum. When truthfully, Iselas wasn't giving this woman shit. The fact that she was a councilwoman only made the half-elf less likely to comply -- not that this person could have known that. And, Iselas was already relatively convinced that this woman wasn't whom she said she was. Silverhand didn't seem like the type to just recruit strange people scrounging around the ruins of Fenerus' house. Surely, she'd be able to find a private force that wasn't so underhanded?

"Where have they taken him?" Iselas asked finally. "Or, where should we start first?"
"The Xanathar took him to their sewers." Lareal responds. "To their hideout no doubt. When you find the possession, please meet me at the Seven Masks Theatre."

"Again?" Amiri scowls.

"You've been there before?" Lareal asks.

"Yeah." Amiri nods. "Not looking forward to visiting again."

You know the way at least.

- Proceed to the Xanathar hideout.
- Ask something else.
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Proceed to the Xanathar hideout.
That was a good enough lead for Iselas, though she definitely didn't intend to give the stone to Lareal she still needed to obtain it. Gold beyond measure, beyond counting, that was what the rumours said, correct? Iselas wasn't immune to such temptation -- she doubted anyone was -- and corruption was inevitable. So, it might as well be on her terms.

"At least we will be together," Iselas beamed as she pressed closer to Amiri with an easy laugh, attempting to lighten her mood. "Their creepy dungeon of a hideout is no match for us! And you get to actually fight people this time."
You know where the sewer access is already, but you immediately notice that something is different this time. The hatch where you had gone through the last time now leads you to a closed gate with a sign mounted on it that reads, in Common: SEWER ACCESS: AUTHORISED CITY OFFICIALS ONLY.

- Pick the lock (roll d20 for dexterity check).
- Break the lock (roll d20 for strength check).
- Have Amiri break the lock.
Pick the lock (rolled 6).
"Funny how our totally real and not corrupt councilwoman didn't warn us about the council lock down in this area," Iselas murmured to Amiri, slanting her with a vaguely annoyed glance that hopefully encompassed how done she was. If anyone asked them what they were doing down there, the half-elf decided that she'd play dumb and pretend like she actually believed that woman was Silverhand.

Retrieving her lock picking kit from her bag Iselas hunkered down to examine the lock. She figured deft fingers would be best in this situation, at least over brute force.
You manage to unlock the gate, but it takes a moment.

"Have you ever done this before?" Amiri jibes, while waiting for you to be done with.

When you are finally through, you step into the sewage canal that is somewhat deeper this time and equally foul smelling. You walk down the dark tunnels, leading Amiri, and slowly begin to realise that something is different this time. The tunnels turn in the opposite direction, where once were crossroads stand freshly built walls, and where once were solid walls, now there are new passages. The layout of the hideout has changed since you were last here.

After half an hour of perilous trudging through filth, you arrive in front of a section of wall that looks different then the rest of it. The bricks seem redder on either side of the passage, and while Amiri cannot see anything, you can clearly discern two hidden doors on your left and right.

- Go left.
- Go right.
Go left.

A huff of amusement -- mixed in with an ounce of frustration -- escaped Iselas' lips as she struggled to open the lock. It took longer than it normally would have, but they were eventually greeted by darkness and putrid scent of the sewers. Nice. As they wandered further in -- with Iselas keeping careful tabs on Amiri -- she began to realise that she had no recollection of this place.

"They've changed the layout," Iselas murmured softly to her companion, informing her of the dilemma she now faced. "...Let's try this door!" She hummed, completely guessing as she approached the left door. Her logic was mainly that she didn't want to take the 'right' door, in case there were some sneaky mind-games at play. It probably wasn't that deep.
You pat the wall down until you feel an indentation that is used as a handle, and pull the doors open. They make no sound.

The chamber ahead is completely dark. In fact, you are yet to see any lit torches in the hideout. Even you cannot make any sense out of the dark corners. It's a big room.

"Where are we?" Amiri asks, flailing with her arms, until she finds your shoulder and takes hold of you.

You hear something moving at the edge of your vision. A soft patter of bare feet in the muck-covered ground. Multiple feet.

- Go further in.
- Back out.
Go further in.
"I don't know but there's something else in here," Iselas whispered to Amiri as she reached up to clasp the other woman's hand in reassurance. Carefully she inched further into the room, now actively searching their surroundings for the source of the noise. Or, more importantly, another door that would lead them out of this place. They needed to keep moving forward and Iselas really didn't want to get ambushed when her companion couldn't even see.
The moment you move further in is the moment when you realise you are surrounded. Out of the corners of the chamber, and closer to you, so you can see them now, step out four creatures.

Troglodytes. They live in mud and swamps. Intelligent beings, but on the level of kobolds. Significantly more violent. One of them stands behind you, blocking your exit.

"I hear them." Amiri whispers, letting go of you and grasping her sword. She could be able to discern their movements with sound alone, as her sense of direction was generally good.

- Try talking.
- Try bribing them.
- Back out of the room.
- Attack them.
Try talking.

It was at this moment that Iselas knew she'd messed up.

"There are four troglodytes. We are surrounded on all sides, and one is blocking our exit." Iselas relayed back to Amiri rapidly, hurriedly informing her companion of the situation. Truthfully, she didn't want to fight right now. They weren't looking to start anything with these creatures, in fact, Iselas really just wanted to back right out of this situation altogether.

"I apologise for intruding, we must have taken a wrong turn somewhere. We're lost," Iselas raised her voice from its previous whisper, now addressing the troglodyte before them. "We don't want to fight."
The troglodytes eye your stuff and don't pay much attention to what you are saying. Finally, the one behind you, blocking the exit, says:

"Give gold. Then go."

"Let's just kill them all." Amiri says, brandishing her greatsword. You hear the four creatures hiss angrily in response.

- Give all of your gold.
- Give a small amount and pretend it's all.
- Fight them.
Fight them.
And that was an unfortunate trade off because Iselas really liked her gold and she really didn't want to give them a single dragon.

"You know, I think I like her plan more." Iselas admitted as she withdrew her crossbow and leveled it at the nearest troglodyte. There wasn't any warning as she sent off an arrow, hoping to take down one. The odds of four against two really wasn't looking good for her and Amiri.
You take them by surprise, as they thought they had the upper hand. Right up until one of them is lying down in the mood, not moving.

The other three recover fast, though, and they rush at you with their spears. Amiri deflects one, but the tip catches her on the shoulder. With an angry growl, she hits it square on the snout and follows it with her blade.

One of the troglodytes focuses on you, the tip of its spear aimed in your direction.

- Dodge (roll d20 for agility check).
- Block (roll d20 for strength check).
- Counter (roll d20 for acrobatics check).
Counter (rolled 3).
One down, three more to go. With her crossbow lowered for the moment Iselas attempted to escape the spear headed her way by ducking. A new arrow was hitched in place and leveled upwards, intending to uppercut through the bottom of the troglodyte's head. Unfortunately, there wasn't much time to deliberate or think her actions through -- she had reacted primarily on instinct.
You are not fast enough with notching the bolt and the creature's spear catches you on the upper arm. It stings and makes holding your crossbow more difficult.

In the meantime, Amiri disposes of her opponent and turns in the direction of the last remaining one. The creature looks hesitant to attack her.

Your attacker prepares for another stab.

- Dodge (roll d20 for agility check).
- Block (roll d20 for strength check).
- Counter (roll d20 for acrobatics check).
Counter (rolled 9).
Pain flickered across the blonde's features when she failed to dodge the incoming blow. A quiet hiss managed to escape her lips before she smothered it completely. Instead of backing down or retreating from the fight -- as the smart option would probably be -- Iselas made to dodge the second attack. With her bolt still hitched in place she hoped it would find its mark this time around.
This time you notch the bolt quickly and send it flying. It pierces the creature's neck, stopping its attack. Amiri finishes off her opponent, coming out of the fight with a couple more scratches. Both of you are alright, with only shallow wounds.

There is a passage that leads to the right from the chamber you are in, and the door that leads back out.

- Go forward through the passage.
- Go back.
Go forward through the passage.
Second opponent dead -- and with both of Amiri's dispatched -- the two women managed to leave the fight relatively unscathed. An assessing glance was cast over Amiri, cataloguing her wounds to ensure that they were all superficial. The human couldn't see in this darkness which meant that the half-elf would have to be both of their eyes. Once satisified Iselas reached out to take her hand, carefully guiding her past the bodies and towards the new passage.
You walk into a room that must have used to be a wine cellar. Its walls are lined with piles of rotting wood and broken bottles on one side, and on the other you only see an empty chamber, choked with dust and cobwebs.

You see a sturdy chest in the empty side of the room. Right in front of it you see a mass of mud stirring. It shifts and moves, then raises from the ground.

There's no end to monsters in the Xanathar dungeouns.

- Escape.
- Fight the creature.
Fight the creature.

"What the fuck is that!?" Iselas whispered, hand tightening around Amiri's as she instinctively shied away from the grotesque creature. Releasing the other woman's hand she hurried to retrieve her crossbow and to hitch another bolt. This time she stepped protectively in front of Amiri as she fired it directly into the heaving and unsightly mass of the creature.

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