HEROES OF IMPILTUR
Moonstaff of Skeyva
The headpiece combined with a rod of variable length is used to activate the portal to Bitriarch’s Vault. In order to construct the Moonstaff you needed a plain wood staff of exact length and then cap it with the headpiece of Skeyva. The headpiece was made of glass, in the shape of a dragon’s head, with a diamond held between its teeth. When held before the portal, the Moonstaff was supposed to open a doorway the vault.
Childa Bennings and her father Norbert “Norr” Bennings first found reference to the Moonstaff and Bitriarch’s Vault while excavating some ruins close to Fort Frostbite. Her father wrote to an associate scholar who owned the headpiece of the staff and requested that the item be delivered to him at the Fort. It appears that somehow the Fraternity of Tharos got wind of the message because they arrived at the Fort with the headpiece and abducted Childa and Norr. They demanded that Norr use the Moonstaff to take them to the vault so that they could retrieve the weapon inside. Norr and some of the Fraternity, including Count Bereg Loroth, entered the portal and have not been heard from since. After the heroes rescued Childa, they too were forced to enter the portal to escape from the ancient dragon, Moonshadow. Instead of arriving at the vault, the heroes were transported to an elemental plane of winter.
After finding and translating one of Bitriarch’s old journals, Childa realized that the information she and her father found in the ruins was incomplete (the tablet they found was broken). They read the instructions as “When the moon is full, shine the light of its twin through the staff to open the portal.” They thought that the Moonstaff must be used during a full moon and that the light of the twin must mean moonlight (the light of the sun, the twin, reflected off of the moon). This is how the portal was activated by both her and her father on the previous visits. Thanks to the translation from the journal she realized that the correct instructions were, “When the moon is full of darkness, shine the light of its twin through the staff to open the portal.” She instructed the heroes that the Moonstaff must be used on the night of a new moon and that sunlight (produced through magical means) must be directed through the staff in order to open the portal. In addition, the length of the staff had to be calculated according to a formula Bitriach provided using the alignment of the stars in the night sky. The problem being that Bithiarch’s formula was written before the Spellplague realigned the planets. Childa believed that she could compensate thanks to the Moon Elves considerable research in astronomy. On their latest trip to the portal, the heroes followed her instructions but it appears that her calculations were slightly off. Although the portal transported them close to Bitriarch’s Vault, they did not arrive directly outside it as was intended.