Far off in the Withered Heath, a great Cold-drake slept. More than three hundred years ago he plagued the Grey Mountains, killing and stealing from the Dwarves who lived there. They called him Raenar, the plunderer, for he had smashed the gates of many halls since the reign of Náin the Second. In 2589 he killed King Dáin the First, together with Frór his second son, but was grievously hurt in the battle. Soon after that, he abandoned the region.

But Raenar didn’t die of his wounds. He settled in a frozen cave to heal, and slowly fell into a slumber. His sleep would have lasted an age or more, if something didn’t wake him up. His long sleep has diminished him in size and strength, but it hasn’t robbed him of his wicked cunning or of his ability to catch the scent of gold and precious things…

Now, Raenar, greatest of all Cold-drakes, the Dragon-king, the plunderer of a hundred Dwarf-halls, the slayer of Kings, the Great Worm of the Frozen Waste, the Scourge of the North, sits in his new lair, the Watchtower on the Heath, and dreams of increasing his hoard of plundered gold.