This structure was located in the foothills of the Nether Mountains northeast of Everlund, in a ravine cut by a nameless stream that eventually fed into the River Rauvin. The tower was built near the bottom of the ravine in the middle of the stream (or the stream eventually surrounded the tower) and was difficult to spot among the tall trees and rugged terrain.
The cylindrical stone tower was approximately four stories tall and capped by a steeply tapered cone roof that was covered with shingles made of slate. A flagpole was mounted on the peak of the roof, but no flag had flown there for many years. A closed trapdoor and handrails were visible near the base of the flagpole. The most striking feature of the tower was the missing ground floor—it had collapsed, walls and all, sometime in the Turret's history, while the remaining structure was held aloft by nothing more than magical enchantments. Possible entrances to the Turret were the broken staircase leading up to the former second floor, or the trap door in the roof.
After the structural collapse, the stream poured into the three rooms in the cellar and the base of the tower became a mild whirlpool with jagged walls that only posed a hazard to small creatures and weak swimmers. A partial stone staircase rose up for a few steps above the water.
The first (viable) floor was a portal chamber that contained nothing but an old stool and a symbol engraved into the center of the floor. The symbol was a large four-pointed star with runes carved inside and radiated strong magic when detected. Similar symbols were known to exist in some ruins and on high mountains around the Sword Coast North.
The second floor was the best preserved room in the Turret. The tapestries on the wall, which depicted humans (knights in full plate except for helms, allowing their faces to be seen) on horseback pursuing female pixies, glowed faintly with preservation magic. Stronger magic also lingered about this room, perhaps coming from the large, ornately decorated lantern that hung from the ceiling over a big central table that held metal-working tools, or from the helmed horror that stood nearby.
The third floor was where the ghost of Aulstaer Mrelgaunt could usually be found. A small central table with chairs was illuminated by a glowing ball of air that hovered above it. The tapestries in this room were not preserved and had mostly rotted away. A ladder led up to the tiny attic that provided access to the trap door in the roof. Numerous chests of various sizes were placed around the room, but all were open and empty.
The Turret was dark from the outside, with few or no windows. Birds did not enter the structure nor perch or nest on its roof. Those who visited the topmost room with non-threatening intent found that the whispering voice was lonely and eager to talk about spellcraft, give advice, identify items, or hear news of research into the Art.
The physical defense of hovering over running water was enough to keep wandering creatures away, but did not present a great obstacle to determined adventurers. The helmed horror on the second floor would attack anyone who attempted to vandalize the Turret or its furnishings and decorations. A second helmed horror appeared whenever a tool was removed from the chamber with the preserved tapestries, intent on retrieving the tool and putting it back in its proper place.
The most potent defense of the Turret was Mrelgaunt himself. He was a high-ranking wizard who retained all his spellcasting abilities when he crossed into undeath. In addition, he had some of the abilities of a ghost: the power to pass through walls and floors and move in complete silence, a damaging touch, the ability to manifest, etc. He was aware of intruders throughout his tower and for some distance into the surrounding countryside. A hollow tree stump not far from the Turret contained a pile of human bones that Mrelgaunt could use for casting his whirlwind of bones spell.
The Turret was built for Mrelgaunt by a company of dwarves—the lead stonecutter was Haelburt Downdelve—sometime in the early decades of the 12th century DR, and Mrelgaunt became a haunting spirit approximately fifty years later. In the late 13th century, what was then the first floor (including the walls) collapsed, leaving the rest of the tower hovering by its enchantments over the jagged teeth of the broken cellar wall and the lazy whirlpool that filled the basement chambers.
- ↑ 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 1.5 Ed Greenwood (June 2001). “Elminster's Guide to the Realms: Mrelgaunt's Turret”. In Dave Gross ed. Dragon #284 (Wizards of the Coast), p. 74.
- ↑ Map included in Ed Greenwood, Sean K. Reynolds, Skip Williams, Rob Heinsoo (June 2001). Forgotten Realms Campaign Setting 3rd edition. (Wizards of the Coast). ISBN 0-7869-1836-5.
- ↑ 3.0 3.1 3.2 3.3 Ed Greenwood (June 2001). “Elminster's Guide to the Realms: Mrelgaunt's Turret”. In Dave Gross ed. Dragon #284 (Wizards of the Coast), p. 76.
- ↑ 4.0 4.1 4.2 4.3 Ed Greenwood (June 2001). “Elminster's Guide to the Realms: Mrelgaunt's Turret”. In Dave Gross ed. Dragon #284 (Wizards of the Coast), p. 77.
- ↑ Ed Greenwood (June 2001). “Elminster's Guide to the Realms: Mrelgaunt's Turret”. In Dave Gross ed. Dragon #284 (Wizards of the Coast), p. 75.