A Spot of Silver
Abbey of the Five Altars
History of the Abbey
A derelict abbey, built about 400 years ago, the Abbey of the Five Altars was the traditional home of the Blessed-of-Four Monk and his monastic brothers and sisters. Four main altars in the main floor of the Abbey are dedicated to Erathis, Moradin, Pelor, and Bahamut. The fifth altar was known to be accessible only to sworn brothers and sisters of the Abbey, and most assumed it to be an altar dedicated to all four of these gods at once, a sort of concentrated sacralized location. The abbey continued to contain active monastics after the death of the Blessed-of-Four Monk, but monastic vows began to decline and the abbey fell into disuse nearly a century ago.
During a trip to the Abbey to help Sister Sondal obtain an ancient relic, a group of adventurers discovered that the fifth altar was actually dedicated to Aruman, a wolf-human god noted as the first natural lycanthrope. His altar and statue had been desecrated by foul rites of Asmodeus, and the adventurers cleaned the altar and the statue of corruption.
Later, the adventurers learned that the skull was, in fact, channeling the divine power of Aruman in the region, permitting were-creatures like Grimbold Thriddamarsh and his kin to control their powers and appear as simply a large family of shifters rather than werewolves. In fact, many creatures in the area, such as the drow were-spider Ti’irtha in the northern woods, had been unwittingly benefitting from the placement of the skull in the Abbey. When it was removed by Karis of Ravenmount, who had been posing as Sister Sondal and secretly working for the Iron Circle, the ability of werecreatures in the area to control themselves declined and disappeared almost immediately.
Player Base of Operations
In gratitude for throwing off the yoke of the Iron Circle, the Baron of Harkenwold granted the party the Abbey and the surrounding land, as well as sending Old Kellar and other stonemasons to patch up its crumbling hallways. A teleportation circle inscribed within its walls has also been attuned to similar circles in Dal Nystiere and the Selûnarium of Sehanine in Fallcrest, permitting the party to travel swiftly between the south reaches of Harkenwold and the primary cities of the Nentir Vale.
In addition, the Cliffside Brewery provided the adventurers with a magnificent item, a specially-enchanted cask which could dispense unlimited quantities of the six signature varieties of drink produced by the Cliffside Brewery. Dubbed the Magnificent Cask of Cliffside by the party, it sits prominently in the entryway to the Abbey, and the adventurers receive a cut of the profits from the sale of its brew to any passerby who visit.
In addition, while the outer reaches of the Abbey are now open to those who might tour it as pilgrims and see its holy sites, the inner reaches of the Abbey are set aside as a barracks and base of operations for the heroes, and the doors to this inner sanctum were outfitted with magical alarms which sound upon the entry of any undesignated person.