Dvalin woke up with a start. He had been having a dream, a bad one. He couldn’t remember the details as the rising sun drove away the vestiges of sleep. Then he realized that tomorrow would be his birthday and the memory of the dream washed away completely from his mind. He dashed out of bed and dressed for the day, stopping to wash his face before leaving the house. His father would already be at the temple, preparing the shrine for the day.
He rushed out of his home so fast he had to go back for the hammer he forgot to take with him. The house he shared with his father was built around the wall of the mountain. His father, Gralmor, had hammered the beams in himself to create the skeleton for the house. He had used the prevalent pine of the mountain forests and built the walls. Small stones were used for the chimney and small trees had been left to grow out in front of the house for added privacy and protection. Dvalin loved their small, cozy home. He touched his hammer to his forehead and uttered a prayer to Moradin for that day’s blessing. A ways up the mountain lay his forge. He had built it himself as part of his initiation to Moradin’s service. For the rest of the morning until lunch time, he worked at the forge. Hammering away at his new hammer. It would be finished today and left to cool and set in its handle for the night.
With a burst of power, he rushed down the mountain to meet his father for lunch. He and Gralmor had a hearty lunch of potatoes with butter and venison steaks. They had caught a buck a few days ago and had separated the meat into what would be used now and what would be preserved for the winter. They would be eating a stew tonight, which Gralmor was starting after they had finished their meal. Dvalin went back up to the forge to check the new hammer and make sure it was setting well in its handle. He stayed up at the forge until dinnertime. The smell of gently simmering meat came to him as he approached the house. Once, inside he sat down at the table in anticipation of a delicious stew. They were in the middle of eating dinner when the windows all shattered inward. Dvalin and Gralmor were bombarded with falling glass. Gralmor, having been in battle before, knew what to do. He drew his sword and shoved Dvalin towards the back of the house.
Unbeknownst to even Dvalin, Gralmor had installed an escape space at the back of the house. They ran into his bedroom. He told Dvalin to go and escape, to seek out some help in Waterdeep. He shoved a bundle of papers and a pack full of rations and things he would need for travel. He hugged his son as the sounds of breaking furniture and shouts of anger as the intruders found an empty room. With one last look at each other, Gralmor drew his sword from a dusty scabbard in the corner of the room and marched into the main room to face the intruders. Dvalin got one last glimpse of his father, surrounded by Duergar, as he dove through the fake wall panel and made his way outside. He ran through the trees, away from the sounds of fighting, but he saw many more descending on the house. He tried to turn back to help his father, who had just smashed through a broken window with a duergar he was stabbing. Instead, he slipped on some soft undergrowth and went tumbling down the mountain. He fell down until he hit the road and lost consciousness.
When he finally came to, he was rocking gently in the back of a wagon. It was filled with sacks and crates of goods. He lay there for a few moments reliving the events of the night before. When he finally got his head up to see what was around him he saw a white bird creature in one seat and an old man in the other, holding the reins. He managed to ask where they were headed but only got as far as hearing, Waterdeep, before falling unconscious once more.