The clamours of merchants shouting echoed through the cold, narrow windows of the Vault of the Shield, headquarters of the Knights of the Shield and the Black Lord of Waterdeep. The black stone warehouse proudly watched every detail over the skyline of Waterdeep with its four mighty towers. Within it, a chronicler of the Shield dipped his quill into the thick, viscous ink and began to write:
“To be submitted into the annals of the Knight of the Shield, this document dictates the historical records on the ‘Champions of Waterdeep, 1214’. The events of the 22nd day of Leaffall will be reserved for the collective eyes of the Shield and none other. For it is our eyes that are open, to bear witness, and to know.
Henceforth, the Champions of 1214 will be known as Atremus, Feros, Niloc and Rozzo. This record begins with the Champion’s convening within the Salty Sailor, arranged to be emptied and abandoned. Here, the bitter Deadwalk Templar, former champion and Paladin sought his revenge. Instead, he found the silver tongue of Rozzo, who twisted not only his words, but the intelligence of the Paladin. Believing them to be costumed fans of the Champions, he cursed them as he left, vowing to seek his revenge until the last breath leaves his body.
Before departing the Salty Sailor Inn, Atremus informed his fellow Champions that his father, the Green Lord Elminster, requested their gathering at a dinner within the Halls of Harpers. Knowing now their reputation now preceded them, the Champions decided to split ways to treat with each of the Lords of Waterdeep.
Atremus, oddly costumed as a chubby man-baby, waddled his way to the deepest roots of the Halls of the Harpers, land of the Green Lord.
The Halls of Harpers
Feros proudly marched himself through the docks of the Red Sash Canton, the port authority of the Red Lord.
Niloc, recognizing the supremacy of the watchful Knights, stepped towards the mighty stone doors of the Vault of the Shield, home the vigilant and all-knowing Black Lord.
Rozzo, knowing his silver-tongue would find best company within the Silverstar’s Basilica, costumed himself as a pompous noble known as Montgomery Goodcock and trotted across the ivory cobblestoned paths of the White Lady.
While their words may have been their own, but the Knights of the Shield own all that is spoken within the City of Splendour.
Atremus’ weary waddle led him into a den of barbarians, seeking an easy robbing from a strange man-child. Instead, they found themselves within a trap as thunder rattled from the babe’s blubber, throwing the bandits upon their asses. Tearing his costume from his body and revealing his true self, the elderly wizard commanded they flee to the north, seeking an invaluable treasure hidden upon the Manticore’s perch. Agreeing to such an opportunity, the barbarians fled Waterdeep to the Crags of the north to, presumably, have their skin devoured from their living bodies.
Feros would find himself surrounded by the pirates, smugglers and petty thieves of the Red Canton. He sought a young Halfling and current member of the Shield by the name of Shadow, only learning that she has taken a short leave of absence. With little luck, he inquired upon the mood of the Canton in wake of Rozzo’s prophecy, learning that while much of the Red Sash held his word’s to be true, they instead resorted to their own indulgences rather than mobilize a fighting force. Yet, prior to meeting the elven pirate-queen and Lord of the Red Sash, Feros learned that a small force of young thugs had organized themselves, hoping to recruit and aid a small force in defiance of Tiamat’s return. Here, he learned of the Red Lady’s reservations of the looming civil war. She knew it would be the downtrodden of Waterdeep who would suffer the most.
The Red Sash Canton
Niloc marched deep within the blackened stone walls of the Vault of the Shield. Gazing ahead, his devilish eyes focused on our mercenary Lord Roderigo, clad in his iron armour and slouched upon his mighty throne. Here, Niloc shared stories of his past, notably having been raised by wolves as a child. Impressed his hardships that many of the Shield can sympathize with, Roderigo offered Niloc an opportunity to work for our glorious agency. While it may be stripped from future records, he was tasked with preventing the Silverstar’s attempt at triggering an open civil war. For Roderigo seeks to ensure the Shield’s absolute lordship over Waterdeep, rather than provoke a march of Silverstars and the Guards of Castle Waterdeep. Subterfuge, our Lord spoke, is the best means to usurp a city.
The Lord of the Shield and his Fears
Montgomery Goodcock’s (Rozzo’s) valiant stride into the Silverstar’s Basilica muddled our intel. Even the Spies of the Shield cannot penetrate the blinding light of the elven Lady Silverstar. However, our informants do know of the Queen of Temperance’s devious plot purify the city of its sins by triggering a civil war. That is, their so-called righteous and holy crusade upon the Lords of the Red and Black. One can only hope that Rozzo was not tempted by her renown beauty and purity that few have been said to resist.
Rozzo approaches the Throne of Lady Silverstar
As the Champions returned to meet with Elminster, father of Atremus, each of them learned of the coming of the Opera titled the Lords of Lovers. Such an event marks the biannual Council of Waterdeep where the Lords must renew their vows to unity, settle any differences and elect any or all of the five lords, if necessary. While each gaining differing propositions, they were asked to secretly participate within the Opera to thwart (or perhaps, to ensure) an assassination attempt that could trigger an all-out civil war amongst the Lords.
Yet, their dinner plans had become interrupted. Cloaked shadows emerged from the rooftops and fired upon them with arrows dipped in paralyzing Drow poison. Inquiries into these assassins have been met with misleading sources but their connections seem to spread to each of the five Lords. As of the day of this record, the allegiance of these assassins are unknown, but rumours claim they serve Tiamat, the mythical Dragon Queen of the stories of Old.
Regardless of the origins of these assassins, their attempts were inevitably futile. The Champions proved their resilience despite numerous occasions where their allies lay in paralysis. Clouds of fog and maddening darkness blurred the accuracy of their arrows and the Champions slowly, but surely, slayed each assassin one by one, as they ripped their fellow Champions from their noxious slumbers. Let it be known, the assassins and their dungeon master had been utterly foiled. The players of this great game were victorious against all odds.
Realizing that their notoriety had reached those who would rather see them dead, Rozzo and Atremus quickly rushed to the Halls of Harpers to meet Elminster for their planned dinner. Having witnessed a remaining cloaked figure escape into a nearby manhole, Feros and Niloc decided to follow the shadow deeper into the sewers.
Within those sewers they found a spy of our own. A key to the origin of the assassins: the former Boss Shadow of Haz’ran. Caught off guard alongside Foil, former doctor (and torturer) of the Shadow Thieves, they confessed their plot. A plot, our agents must further investigate…”
The chronicler dated the document and gently folded the parchment as he walked over the iron cabinets that covered all four walls. Removing a key from his pocket, he unlocked the cabinet and pulled out one of the leather folders and placed the document within.
“For the eyes of the Shield only,” he whispered to himself as he locked the cabinet. “We shall see how this influences the Opera in two days hence. Now, to write the history for public eyes" he grinned as the night sky of the 22nd of Leaffall crept over Waterdeep.