It has been a grueling past few weeks as you and your company slow excursion to the northeast and your final destination of the semi-independent fortified town of Montburg. For rumors on the winds had carried to all the city-states that the doors of the ancient dungeon of Dwimmermount had again open for some unknowable reason. Rumors were flying but as the one of the last sources of magical items in the realms there were great calls for adventures and explorers.
Your company has just left Adamas, the last large city this far north and one of the great cities of the ancient Thule Empire. While the empire is no more, Adamas still stands proud. But the people were cold and unfriendly, stoic to their lot in life of hard work with little rewards. The city’s official deity was Grumbar, the dour god of elemental earth, solidity, changelessness, and oaths. The people reflected their god in their stubbornness and dislike of change (and strangers). There were few inn or welcome taverns in the city, most were located outside her walls where the few caravans.
You had heard a few rumors here; that the opening of the Dwimmermount boded ill fortune for the region. That the goblin hoards where creeping back into their old holds in the Wintertop Mountains. The necromancers of the old Lich-Lords were preforming rituals again in the Demon Claw Mountains and Caracava Badlands, ancient strongholds of the undead. That the great spiders of the Cobwood Forest were awakening from their long slumber to again treaten the surrounding lands. The Thule barbarians of the north, uncivilized brutes who had forgotten the civilized way of their ancient empire, where again raiding into the southlands, pillaging and taking slaves back to their cold holds. That the dark elves* were making their presence known in the Evensong Woods, whether for good or ill, it was assumed it must be ill tiding indeed.
Of the Dwimmermount itself, your company had heard that the engines the ran the ancient tomb were active again and fueling the bones of the past dead to some unnatural unlife (undead?). There were also rumors that while the main entryway was open that must mean that the other ‘doors’ are also open. That the mount itself had more than one entrance was accepted by all but no one seemed to know where they were. For it was said that the tomb was alive and that its interior sometimes changes as did the entrances…
You are now just two days travel from Montburg on the old Thule Trade Road. It had seen better days and few if anyone traveled it for trade anymore as the other ancient cities farther north had all been destroyed in ancient days, the last, Lloraec, whose ruins lie many days north or Montburg in the Plains or Ur and past the Wintertop Mountains.
A cold wild forced you to bundle up for this last leg of travel, and there was a hint of snow or at least freezing rain by this evening. It would be a cold camp that no one was looking forward too but as the season pasted it would only get worse before it got better. Spring was many weeks off yet and the storms of these lands were legend.