Leilon (pronounced: /ˈlaɪlɒn/ LIE-lon or: /ˈleɪlʌn/ LAY-lun or: /ˈlilɒn/ LEE-lon or: /ˈlilʌn/ LEE-lun) was a small mining town that served as a convenient resting place for weary travelers on the High Road along the Sword Coast between Neverwinter and Waterdeep. According to Volo, northerners generally pronounced it LIE-lon while non-locals who learned the name from a map typically chose one of the other possible pronunciations.
In the Sword Mountains east of Leilon was the dwarven hall of Southkrypt. It was a silver mine in centuries past but was abandoned and became the lair of monsters. Southkrypt belonged to a realm of seafaring dwarves whose symbol consisted of a star, a fish, and a mountain peak. That symbol was sometimes seen on stones that were salvaged and used as building material by the people of Leilon.
The town contained many stone cottages with slate or thatched roofs, the latter covered with hardened mud.
Trade by sea was dangerous, as the nearby shore was a shallow mudflat and the method used to transfer cargo from ships at sea to the land was perilous. A fleet of a dozen barges, magically warded against fire and rot, were poled out to meet the ships, whereupon cargo was transferred using rickety cranes that were impossible to use in high winds. Instead of relying on this form of trade, most of Leilon's imports came by caravan out of Waterdeep. Leilon's eastern mines contained copper, nickel, and silver that was sold to Waterdeep merchants.
Once a month (except during winter) a band of gnomes came to Leilon to engage in trade. They were from the gnome village of Ieirithymbul in the western Sword Mountains and were watched over by their protector, the gold dragon Palarandusk.
Leilon did not have defensive walls, but instead had an earthen rampart with a wooden palisade and surrounding ditch. This protected it on the landward side except for the gateless entrance.
The Leilon military, known as the Lances of Leilon, consisted of a force of 200 mounted soldiers. Each was fully armed with sword, axe, knife, lance and a light crossbow that could be fired from horseback with great skill. They wore chain mail with shields strapped to their chests and backs. These warriors were always on patrol, vigilant against raids by orcs, trolls, bugbears, bandits, and pirates. They also placed heavy guard on the mines, upon which much of Leilon's economy depended.
In the Year of Shadows, 1358 DR in the month of Kythorn, a patrol from Leilon secretly followed a band of lizardfolk from the Mere of Dead Men. They counted at least twenty of them including a shaman. The lizardfolk crossed the River Dessarin and continued east.
Also in 1358 DR in the month of Eleasis, twenty longships invaded Leilon. The raiders burned farms, stole livestock, and sank eight of the twelve barges. The Lances of Leilon inflicted heavy casualties and drove them off, but the raiders killed almost 200 townspeople and caused three months worth of Leilon's ore output to sink to the bottom of the ocean with the barges. None of the longships flew identifying colors, and magical interrogation of the dead provided several different answers including Luskan, Ruathym, Moonshae, and the Whalebones.
That same year, in the month of Eleint, Lord Piergeiron of Waterdeep withdrew his ambassadors from Luskan and Ruathym and demanded reparations for the attack on Leilon from the High Captains of Luskan.
The spellplague of 1385 DR broke the magical wards of the High Tower of Thalivar and released all of its guardians, who then rampaged through the village. Any survivors that did not flee were then subject to the new magical forces from the tower that paralyzed all who looked upon it. Leilon was abandoned at this point and everyone on the High Road took a wide detour around its ruins to avoid the sight of the tower.
Following the Year the Iron Dwarf's Vengeance, 1485 DR, Lord Neverember wanted to support increased trade on the High Road to Neverwinter and ordered the High Tower of Thalivar be torn down. His forces were successful and Leilon's ruins began to be restored and repopulated. The new inhabitants all owed their allegiance to Neverwinter and its Lord.
In the early 1490s DR, great strides had been made to rebuild both the town and the High Tower of Thalivar, now known as the House of Thalivar. However, the source of the tower's magical power became the focus of a conflict between two cults, one dedicated to conquest in the name of Talos and the other dedicated to restoring the power of the dracolich Ebondeath for the glory of Myrkul. This reached a crescendo when the cults clashed with each other at the town in a three-way battle and siege known as the Battle of Leilon.
- High Tower of Thalivar
- This abandoned wizard's tower was located in the center of town, protected by a magical ward and deadly guardian monsters. It was torn down and subsequently rebuilt in the late 15th century DR.
- The Mines of Leilon
- These mines east of Leilon contained rich deposits of copper, nickel, and silver and were heavily guarded by the Lances. The mountains were networked with many tunnels and shafts, some of which opened into the town itself.
- The Orc's Tusks
- Referred to as the Tusks, this was the favored tavern of the locals. It was friendly, crowded, and cheap. The taproom was dominated by an orc skull with large tusks on which the patrons liked to hang various amusing items.
- The Knight's Goblet
- Referred to as the Goblet, this tavern catered to travelers and was described by Volo as "clean, boring, and overpriced". The proprietor roasted whole boars in the taproom hearth and served large loaves of bread with large slabs of meat.
- The Sword of Leilon
- This inn was a virtual labyrinth of small rooms where guests often got lost and wandered by accident into other people's rooms. It was built on the site of an older inn where the defenders of Leilon would gather because of its large size. That earlier inn had burned down through misadventure, but the name of the newer one was a reminder of those former days of local glory.
- Manyclaws Alley
- This dangerous place was thought to be haunted by the ghosts of some trolls, but in reality it was haunted by nine heucuva. The alley was all that remained of a temple to Loviatar that was demolished long ago. The undead guarded the treasure that was still buried beneath the alley in forgotten vaults, unknown by the people of Leilon.
Rumors & Legends
Despite the high quality of law and order in the town, there had long been rumors of the Cult of the Dragon and the Zhentarim operating within the town walls. The presence of Zhent agents may have indicated an attempt to secure a trade route. There were also tales of local cults who worshiped undead wizards or spirits of the mines.
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