Note: We began playing the Dragon Heist module at this point. So I would recommend not reading if you don’t want any spoilers about the module. I will say that the story is not always the same depending on how you run it but just in case you don’t want to know, you can skip these stories.
The entire trip from Novos, across the ocean to the outskirts of Waterdeep, took about two weeks at full speed. The ship was meant to cross the water at faster speeds than most. Since they smuggled goods back and forth quite often, it benefited Captain Coppertree to move faster on the open seas. They made it to land shortly after sending the stowaway Doppelganger safely away from them.
They docked at a dilapidated looking station outside the walls. The wooden dock was rickety, barnacled and rotted. They stepped onto dry land after taking the skiff to the shore not wanting to take their chances on the dubious wood. Captain Coppertree stayed aboard with most of her crew. A few made their way off and headed to the city with the party. Milo quickly put a cap on his head and, by magic, turned into a nondescript dwarf which he named Wick, after their old paladin friend. After walking a couple of miles and around a bend where the dock was hidden from sight they came across the tall city gates.
Kaladrax was impressed but it was nothing he hadn’t seen before. King’s Crest had a similar set of walls. The real surprise came when they stepped inside. The guards at the gate asked for relevant papers or payment for a day or week pass into the city. Application for citizenship would have to be made at the government offices within the city. They each paid a dragon (equivalent to one gold) and made their way inside. Aleera and Milo were from or near the city and had been inside her walls many times. This was a bittersweet homecoming of sorts for them.
For Kaladrax it was a humbling experience. The city was more vast than all of Novos combined. Microcosms of all kinds thrived together in symbiotic unity here. His immediate amazement was soon replaced with a sick feeling. He was the only one affected and Aleera rushed to his side as he doubled over in pain. After a few moments of excruciating pain, it passed and he was able to stand up straight again. Aleera explained that this was rumored to happen to all dragons that entered the city, apparently it also affected Dragonborns.
Kaladrax took one of his bottles of wine out of his satchel and took a quick swig to calm his nerves before Aleera could stop him. A guard approached and reprimanded him, telling him that drinking in public was not allowed. Aleera managed to talk them out of a worsening situation and hissed at Kaladrax to put the wine away. After the guard walked off with a bit of gold in his pocket to look the other way, they walked down the street.
They were all in amazement of the vast city. For Kariss, Hepolita and Kaladrax this was a gigantic planet unto itself when compared to their own homes. They wanted to explore everything at once. Kariss went in search of a temple of Bahamut and Aleera directed her towards the Hero’s Garden where a relic was that gave praise to Bahamut. It wasn’t a temple per se but somewhere she could be close to her god. She went off on her own without saying anything else. The rest of them wanted to shop. Hepolita went shop crazy. She went from shop to shop buying anything that caught her eye.
Kaladrax wanted to find an apothecary and, with Aleera’s help, they found a small store called Drips and Drops. The lady behind the counter greeted them as they entered the shop and asked if they wanted to look at the special offer. She was offering Moonwater, which was widely known to be a common sleep aid. Kaladrax perked up at this. Wanting to flex his money handling skills he agreed to the high price she set first not realizing he was meant to barter. Aleera shook her head and after they left the store let him know what he had overpaid so much for.
Aleera also needed something from the apothecary so before they left the store, she asked for the cost of the ingredients that her ointment was made of. For the cost of two dragons she got a stockpile of the ingredients she needed. Now she could make the ointment that was a component for one of her spells about a hundred times over. As they left the store she made fun of him, ribbing him over his purchases. He stood proud and smug at his skills and affluence. He felt like the rich noble he was. He didn’t know that these weren’t even the biggest or most expensive of the shops in Waterdeep.
After an extensive afternoon of shopping and looking around the city’s landmarks the party met up at the famous Yawning Portal tavern. They had agreed to it before and they were getting hungry after all that shopping and exploring. They walked into the bustling tavern in the early evening and got themselves a table. The prices were steep but the drinks were great and so was the food. It was well worth the price. As the music rose and the food came the party was in great spirits.