Situated right at the bank of the river, Nardar had a ferry with an odd contraption attached to the back of it. He explained that he was in possession of a spellbook that his great-grandfather had acquired in his adventuring days. Nardar wasn't able to quite figure out exactly how the spells were supposed to work, but he was able to somehow piecemeal together an enchantment that allowed him to build the gadget on the back of his ferry: a motor which would propel the ferry back upstream without him having to row. He had only made it to the trade settlement about 10 days prior and started setting up shop. He hadn't made the trip back to Neathby yet, however, and was happy to take on the party for a reduced fee provided they act as security in case something went wrong with the magical contraption on the way and they became stranded along the route.
About twenty miles from Neathby (four hours journey by Nardar's magic ferry), they stopped for lunch by a pleasant copse of trees as they were first entering the foothills of the Arras Crew Mountains.
The path led to a small cave, in which they found a steel trapdoor obscured by hay. Of course, they decided to descend. The came into a chamber of obvious dwarven craft, full of old, rotten bookshelves. The door to the west was slightly ajar, and from behind it came firelight and gruff noises. They couldn't make out the noise; it sounded like an odd mixture of barks and snorts from dogs and pigs, but had a cadence that suggested it was speech.
We will not have an update next week, as my son will be born (huzzah!). Join us in two weeks to find out what happens next!