Candlekeep is a complex of clustered towers perched on a spur of volcanic rock overlooking the sea. It is reached by a single road, the Way of the Lion. Lights burn in the windows of the keep at all times, and travelers approaching the structure can hear a low chanting. The towers are one of the great centers of learning in the Realms.
The monks of Candlekeep also preserve the predictions of Alaundo the Seer. Alaundo is the singular sage whose prophecies have proved correct over the years. Many of these predictions were minor in nature (A golden unicorn shall travel unmolested through the length of Waterdeep), while others hint of great import (White birds shall vanish from the North, and great evil shall die and be rebornsaid to connect directly with the Time of Troubles).
Upon the seers death, his citadel at Candlekeep became a haven for both the veneration of his prophecies and the accumulation of all knowledge. The acolytes of the keep continually
chant the remaining prophecies of Alaundo, which grow shorter over the centuries as they come true and are discarded. Candlekeep boasts one of the finest libraries in the Realms.
The grounds also house a small temple to Oghma and shrines within to Deneir, Gond, and Milil, but the monks of Candlekeep claim to be nondenominational.
The fortified keep derives much of its income from finding and copying specific passages of information from books of lore, magic, and philosophy preserved there for clients all over the Realms, and from issuing new manuscript books for sale in Waterdeep and Baldurs Gate. These new manuscripts are created by collecting certain passages from older texts together. The scribes of Candlekeep also make additional copies of books brought to them, but others in the Realms provide this last service for less severe fees.
SERVICES AT CANDLEKEEP
Candlekeep attracts adventuring traffic in the form of individuals seeking advice, answers, and information, as well as those seeking copies of maps, records, and general browsers looking for clues to adventure and hidden treasures. The following prices should be a guideline for dealing with such individuals:
Sage advice is twice standard rates (2,000 gp per day), but the library is complete, and working with the scribes should be considered as working with a sage of 18 ability in any field.
Book copying is 100 gp per text, or 10,000 gp per magical text (including spell books, but excluding magical tomes such as the Tone of Clear Thought). A text is considered a single item, whether it is a map or major opus. The copy is noted as a copy by being inscrived with the symbol of Candlekeep (a castle with candle flames atop the towers).
Browsing is tolerated under specific rules:
1. Petitioners must each be sent bearing the seal or sign of a recognized powerful mage, and said mage is responsible for the actions of a petitioner bearing his seal. Both Elminster and
Khelben are on probation after agents bearing their symbols engaged in a magical duel in the general reading room.
2. Petitioners must each give (permanently) to Candlekeep a book of no less than 10,000 gp value.
3. Browsing is permitted for nine days and nights provided the first two conditions are met. On the tenth morning, petitioners are given the choice of leaving (they may return a month later) or joining the order as acolytes. In browsing, travelers may engage in research as if they were sages themselves, with a sage ability equal to their Intelligence (maximum sage ability of 15) and at no further cost. Magical books and other dangerous items are kept in the inner rooms of the Keep. Only the Keeper (the orders head) and the Great Readers (his accomplished staff) may enter these rooms. Any information that may be found within these areas must be researched through the scribes (no browsing permitted).