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Lore:Mount Hotenow

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A Seedling in the Ash[edit | edit source]

Heartleaf was barely a sapling when mount Hotenow’s cataclysmic eruption razed Neverwinter and burned the surrounding lands to ash. The forests that once covered Hotenow’s slopes were obliterated, leaving behind the charred and blackened husks of the Charred Woods. Every dryad of those forests perished on that day, except for Heartleaf. Miraculously, the resilient tiny sapling survived.

In the years following the devastation, Heartleaf worked tirelessly to regrow the forest on Mount Hotenow’s slopes, fighting difficult battle against the ash and smoke that poisons the earth and the air. Her determination and devotion to this mission helped her fend off her despair, loss, and loneliness during those long decades. With the arrival of the armies of fire archons and the Hillborn expedition, however, her mission changed.

She now assists the Hillborn dwarves in their explorations of the volcano as much as she can, keeping watch of the archons’ movements near the Charred Woods. With her help, she hopes that one day the dwarves will arrive in larger numbers and drive the army of living flame away from the young forest that she wishes so desperately to nuture.

Fire Archons[edit | edit source]

The first archons were forged by the primordial to do battle against the angelic hosts of the gods in the dawn war. The primordials reshaped elemental creatures, hammering them into soldiers to form the core of their army. Though the primordials were defeated, the archons remain to shit day, some still fighting to return the world to primordial rule.

From each fire archon’s first moment, its greatest desires are to conquer, overrun, and consume, to take all in serviced of its masters and leave nothing but ashes. These desires are not conscious choices: they are the innate needs of a being created of living flame and hammered into a soldier’s shape. Having foes to destroy is as necessary to a fire archon as having air to breathe.

Fire Giants[edit | edit source]

Self-proclaimed lords of flame, fire giants are militaristic tyrants who enjoy testing their mettle against formidable adversaries. Unlike many of their kin, they are often highly organized, forming militaristic societies bent ton conquering and enslaving all lesser beings.

Like all giants, fire giants are said to have once served the primordial in their ancient war with the gods. After the war ended, the fire giants forged empires built on the blood of conquered foes. These empires have long-since fallen, but many seek to build new ones, hoping to rekindle their race’s ancient glory.

Under the influence of Gommoth the Twisted, the fire giants now inhabiting Mount Hotenow have returned to their worship of the primordial, believing that their imperialistic dreams can me satisfied by serving these ancient beings of immense power.

Fireguard Fortress[edit | edit source]

Fireguard Fortress is an ancient dwarven ruin carved into the slope of Mount Hotenow. For ages it lay undiscovered, hidden under layers of igneous rock, until Mount Hotenow’s cataclysmic eruption shattered its stone prison. It, and other ruins like it, where what attracted the Hillborn clan to the volcano in the first place.

When General Ignazar allied himself with Gommoth, however, he needed a fortress in which to station his army. Gommoth suggested that Ignazar use Fireguard Fortress, and after a thorough inspection the general agreed, finding its smoking halls filled with molten rock to his and his troops’ liking.

General Ignazar[edit | edit source]

General Ignazar is a fire archon who fought for the primordial against the gods during the Dawn War, and has never stopped fighting despite the war having ended in the primordials’ defeat eons ago. Unwilling to fight what he considers pointless wars in the Elemental Chaos, Ignazar has led countless armies of archons into Faerun seeking conquest in the name of his primordial maters.

The fact that Gommoth was able to convince this mighty general to join his cause has frightening implications. What bargaining chip could the mad fire giant have possible offered to sway one such as Ignazar? Whatever it may be, General Ignazar now defends Mount Hotenow with his legions, preventing any from interfering with Gommoth’s designs.

Gommoth the Twisted[edit | edit source]

Gommoth the Twisted was once nothing more than exiled, hunchbacked fire giant who dwelled on the slopes of Mount Hotenow. But when the volcano erupted, Gommoth felt the stirrings of a great power, a power which touched him and changed him forever.

Now Gommoth is the self-styled king of an entire sect of fire-worshipping creatures that dwell on the slopes and in the caves of Mount Hotenow. His influence is so great that he has even attracted the loyalty of some of his former clan. With his followers and allies, Gommoth tireless seeks a way to reawaken the great power that he felt stir during the cataclysm almost thirty years ago.

Mount Hotenow[edit | edit source]

Mount Hotenow stands to the northeast of Neverwinter in the mountain range known as the Crags. Its gaping, fiery maw resembles a vision of the Nine Hells, and its occasional rumblings and sporadic gouts of smoke are ample reminder that the volcano is never entirely at rest. Hot springs and magma flows run beneath its rocky exterior, warming the Neverwinter River and ensuring that its waters never freeze.

In the year 1451 DR, nearly thirty years ago, a portion of Mount Hotenow’s peak exploded with such force that lava and superheated ash poured across Neverwinter like and avalanche. Half of the city’s population died as the eruption blanketed the city, and many building were destroyed or incinerated. Survivors fled the smoking ruins that were once the Jewel of the North, leaving Neverwinter mostly abandoned for many years.

Unsurprisingly, Mount Hotenow is the subject of many local legends. Some believe that the volcano sits atop a passage to the Nine Hells. Others say that it is a doorway to the Elemental Chaos. Still others claim that it hides the entrance to an ancient lost city, or is the home of a mighty red dragon. One often-told tale even suggests that anyone who dares to enter the volcano’s caves is cursed to die in fire within the year. With few brave or foolish enough to explore the volcano up close, separating fact from fiction is no easy task.

Nimor Ironvice[edit | edit source]

(Available to Tiefling players only)

Nimor Ironvice discovered a winding tunnel from Gauntlgrym to the surface some time ago. Being careful to disguise himself and to only travel at night, he made several brief explorations into the region above. During these forays, he came into contact with members of the Ashmadai. Cunning and greed as ever, Ironvice struck a deal with the cultists to sell them hellthorn mined by his people below.

For months, Nimor played a dangerous game. He stole the red diabolic metal from the duergar mining operations, brought it to surface, and sold to Ashmadai for exorbitant prices. It became increasingly difficult for him to cover his absences, however, and finally his ploy was discovered by the duergar. Public torture and humiliation were only the beginnings of the punishments that were to be meted out.

Primordials, the Dawn Titans[edit | edit source]

Ages ago, the primordial, then called the Dawn Titans, made war against the gods, then called the Estelar. The stakes were nothing less than dominion over all of Abeir-Toril. This came to be known as the Dawn War, and it lasted countless years as the two sides fought one another with unimaginable power.

Eventually, the Estelar claimed victory when the Dawn Titans were betrayed by one of their own, Ubtao the Deceiver. Nearly all of the Dawn Titans perished in the divine fire of their foes or were imprisoned. Those that escaped these fates retreated into very stones of the mountains and fell silent.

Pyraphenia the Firebrand[edit | edit source]

A renowned swordswoman among the fire giants, Pyraphenia the Firebrand is not a believer in Gommoth’s mad plan to awaken the primordial Maegera. She is a mercenary, who joined hoping to test her skill against new foes. Gommoth’s defensive posture is trying her patience, even more so since the red dragon Karrundax requested the swordswoman serve as a guard in her lair. Her patience at its limit, the already volatile fire giant now waits for the challengers she has been promised, growing angrier by the hour.

The Caverns of Karrundax[edit | edit source]

When the red dragon Karrundax came to Mount Hotenow, she chose an earthmote floating in the Caldera for her lair, then cleared out an adjacent series of caverns for use as storeroom, labyrinths and traps for adventurers who might think to take the dragon unaware. Karrundax has since worked out an alliance with Gommoth and his forces, allowing them to use the lower reaches of her lair as a base of operations in exchange for their promise to guard her lair as her brood hatches.

The Cult of Maegera[edit | edit source]

When Maegera stirred and caused Mount Hotenow’s cataclysmic eruption, Gommoth and the other fire creatures on the mountain’s slopes were washed in spiritual ecstasy. At the time they did not understand exactly what had occurred, but they felt empowered by the euphoria, as though they had truly become one with the fire.

The sensation didn’t last, however, and Gommoth and his followers became determined to recreate it. They delved deep into the volcano, trying to discover what it was that had caused the eruption and whether it could be replicated. Eventually, they stumbled upon the truth: that Maegera dwelled beneath Mount Hotenow.

Armed with that knowledge, Gommoth and his followers searched for a way to reawaken the primordial completely, hoping to again bask in the spiritual euphoria of being one with the flame. If such a thing had or were ever to come to pass, the devastation that would befall the Neverwinter region would make the events of the cataclysm seem paltry in comparison.

The Future of Neverwinter[edit | edit source]

(Available to Half-Elf payers only)

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The Hand of Maegera[edit | edit source]

This powerful elemental creation is the greatest proof Gommoth has received that the voices he hears are not a symptom of his madness, but truly whispers of the imprisoned primordial Maegera. The Hand is an elemental fashioned of white stone and purest flame, animated by an ancient will to serve Gommoth without question. His gift of the creature to Karrundax as a guardian cemented their alliance, though it is said the Hand of Maegera reports the dragon’s every movement to its true master.

The Hillborn Expedition[edit | edit source]

The cataclysmic eruption of Mount Hotenow did more than nearly destroy Neverwinter. It also revealed a strange complex of ancient ruins near the base of the volcano. Some legends linked these ruins with the lost ancient dwarven city of Gauntlgrym, drawing the attention of dwarven clans who traced their ancestry back to the Delzoun clans of old.

Now that Neverwinter is being rebuilt, the Hillborn clan has launched an expedition to Mount Hotenow to try to locate and explore these ruins. Led by Vondra Hillborn herself, they hope to find a clue to Gauntlgrym’s location.