— the drow settlements are growing at a quick pace as outcasts and refugees from the Underdark flock to Fastervalt and Vothys; there is a decidedly anti-Lolth sentiment among the entire populace as many settlers have been cast out of established drow cities; the faiths of Az’Zartha, Selvetarm, and Vhaeraun are popular
— the Observatory on the Isle of the Seven Horns is completed and construction of the Fortress of Faith is well underway
— marauding trolls are defeated near the mine at Mount Uranoth; hobgoblin miners find the remains of a god beneath the mountain; Xod attempts to cast a cure spell on the god and is killed outright; the party take his body back to the Fortress of Faith and he is raised as an undead creature by Az’Zartha
— Garius Malathorn suggests that they party could benefit from researching ancient empires and reclaiming ruins; building settlements on old ruins often halves costs and build-times of new structures, not to mention the possibility of discovering artifacts and lore
— escaped human slaves are captured near Fasturvalt and speak of a rift in the earth that leads to the surface
— cloaker refugees are given permission to settle in Araumycos after gifting Jax with spider silk for magnificent new cloak
— the party explores the Great Jumping Off Point and the passages beyond
— the cave complex near the mid-point of the pit is cleared of doom bats and might make a suitable outpost
— the site of the Battle of Horvath is discovered; hundreds of years ago, thousands of dwarf refugees were killed by drow at this location; the site is an adequate staging ground for a settlement or army
— the party catches sight of the rift that leads to the surface but an earthquake buries this passage; this entire region seems to be highly unstable and may be unsuitable for permanent settlement; at least they saw the rift and know that they are on the right track
— after a month of exploring, the party is forced to return to Vothys for supplies
— The Master of the Mysterious Tower gifts Xod with ancient writings from the faith of Selvetarm; it would seem that Selvetarm’s teachings have been corrupted since he was cursed and subverted by Lolth many years ago
— A human assassin named Artemis Entreri was rescued by the Bregan D’aerthe band of drow mercenaries and taken to Menzoberranzan. Entreri’s arrival in the city created quite a stir throughout drow noble social circles. Jarlaxle, the flamboyant leader of Bregan D’aerthe, does much to enhance these rumors by parading Entreri around the city. The excitement and outrage is compounded when the human assassin flees the city, reportedly in league with a drow renegade from the fallen House Do’Urden — the same renegade seen with dwarves near Mithril Hall.
— In the Unapproachable East, the tharchion of Lapendrar, a powerful red wizard of Thay, allied with the zulkirs of enchantment and conjuration, opens a gate to the elemental plane of fire, and begins a campaign against the north coast cities.