It is roughly two years after the fall of both Ileosa, the mad queen of Korvosa, & Karzoug, the Runelord of Greed.
In Magnimar, Torgisl Snaedis finds himself hung-over & broke in a Dockway dive. A fortune in gold squandered over two years. As his sticky eyes open, he sees the bleery image of a thin, blond man in Ulfen garb. The man, though skeptical this is the sorcerer he is seeking, offers to hire his services on behalf of Queen Elvanna of Irrisen. 35,000 gp if he accepts the job & can get to Whitethrone within two days. Torgisl accepts.
Meanwhile, Sinderion Bromathan, field marshall of Korvosa, is approached by a thin, red haired Ulfen man with the same offer. He tells Sind that the Queen wishes an item of considerable magical power to be retrieved from the Veil of Frozen Tears before a band of demon worshiping frost giants can find it. Sind asks his adventuring companions if they think this is a worthwhile endeavor, & they say yes. Sind informs Queen Elvanna’s agent of accepting the offer, then the entire group heads to Irrisen.
In Whitethrone, Torgisl meets his new adventuring companions, they are given details about the mission, & they spend the night innQueen Elvanna’s ice palace. Come morning, they all eat a big breakfast, then head out to the necropolis.
On reaching the Veil of Frozen Tears, they see a frost giant encampment at the foot of the mighty ice sheet. They also see a large opening in the icy cliff face, revealing a town carved from ice. This is where they enter, immediately coming to a giant clock with two dozen stone crones adorning it.
The party approaches the clock, which has multiple hands & seems to keep time in no known way, & find a clue carved in the ice: “A stitch in time.” Aten flies up to the clockface & spies a rhyme in tiny script where the 9 should be. As he reads it, the clock chimes & two of the stone crones attack. Torgisl attempts to destroy them with a fireball, but only causes two more crones to animate, as they appear to be immune to his magic.
As the battle proceeds, two more crones animate & attack. Aten surmises that proximity to the clock is what caused the attack, so the party gives it some distance. Those crones already attacking continue to fight until destroyed, but no other statues activate. As they finish off the statues, they hear a loud, bestial howl from in the ice town. Aten, still flying, momentarily spots a large, misshapen form, possibly humanoid, in the town watching them. After a moment, the form disappears from view.