Finally free of the highly annoying upper class woman of unusual size, Eremes, Caramel, Velius, Neo and Al’ev “Olive” Reldin made their way back to Micky T’s after it was decided that would be the best place to lodge for the night and would likely be where the others had gone.
Unknown to them, however, someone else was on the way to Micky T’s. Tharrison “harry” Balg had been on the trail of a red dragon for many years. Recently, word of one such creature had surfaced in both Varalon and Trinity. He and his pet badger had picked up the scent just outside the human capital and had tracked it to the local Micky T’s. Stepping inside he saw quite the sight.
What appeared to be a very drunken half ling was trying to get into a position on the ground to stare up a barmaid’s dress. The scent of the red dragon was strong on him, but so were the booze the little guy had drank. With nothing else to go on, and knowing that this red dragon he had been tracking was said to be in the company of several others, including a half-ling, he decided to question him.
Sindri Stribog was well into his ale by the time he had the idea to look up the skirt of the highly attractive barmaid. He had almost reached a perfect vantage when a dwarf and a badger walked right up to him and began to question him. He didn’t know exactly what the dwarf was talking about. And he had even less of an idea as to why this badger was in the inn. Nothing seemed to make much sense beyond the fact that the barmaid was now aware of what he had been doing and was already walking away.
It was then that Crim walked in to find the halfling being questioned by Harry and a badger and interrupted, only to find the badger was now sniffing insistently at his feet.
Harry could smell the red dragon on this one as well and recognized this person wearing pajamas as another of the companions. His questions became directed at Crim.
It was into this scene that Eremes, Caramel, Velius, Neo, and Al’ev walked in. The badger instantly ran straight to Al’ev and Harry new he had finally found his quarry after so many years.
But this half elven man before him didn’t appear to be overly dangerous. How could he be the one responsible for destroying Halar.
Al’ev didn’t waste any time. He quickly grabbed the badger before it could continue its disturbing lock on his leg and brought it over to the dwarf.
Tense words were exchanged and it was agreed that the talk would have to continue in the room the group had rented for the night.
In the room now, Al’ev explained he wasn’t responsible for what had happened that night, though he skirted the reason for his being a half dragon and any possible connections that may have had to the attacks that night. He explained that he had no love for the red flight and that he intended to take vengeance for all that had happened in his life. As he said this he began scratching at his elbow again.
Harry found himself a bit surprised. This was not the murderer responsible for burning Halar to cinders. In fact, this half-dragon man seemed to have a hatred of the red flight rivaling his own. Instead of finding an enemy, he had found some allies. If half of what he had said was true, this man would likely lead him to the butchers of Halar.
With that quandary out of the way, Al’ev asked the group if what they had come to Varalon for was actually complete or if they had lied to the woman. They reassured him that they had taken care of the demon and that there was one more who was joining them now. Pointing up to the rafters in the room, they explained the demon would be joining them.
Although Neo and Al’ev expressed some uneasiness about this companion, they agreed to allow this for now as Eremes told them that the demon was not evil. Having seen the inquisitor’s seal and knowing what that seal meant. They believed him.
Shortly thereafter it was decided that it was a good time to call it a night so that they could make their way back to Trinity in the morning.
After the three day trek back to Trinity, they group arrived at the guild hall to find Goat, ugly as ever, with some disturbing news.
He told the group they had some choices to make. Serious events seemed to be afoot.
War to be precise. A war between dragons and all that were in their way. Goat had come to this conclusion after talking with Selestrus, the blue dragon who had encased his essence within a crystal that Sindri had left behind before heading to Varalon.
Before continuing, Goat presented several group members with powerful items that they had requested. Ranging from sword to bow, these items were of grand quality and were enhanced greatly by the gems the group members had been charging over the course of the past week.
The last item he gave out was a staff that contained the crystal of Selestrus. This item was handed to Sindri. The dragon’s voice rang out for all of the heroes to hear. He explained that they had to get in contact with three groups of dragons. There was a pair of groups in the Larian Mountains, blue and black. The final group was comprised of green dragons that could be found off the coast of Orleon. The groups had to be contacted for Selestrus believed that war was almost upon them. A war between the various flights of dragons across the land. He believed that they had to gather what support they could as it already seemed the white dragons of the desert had joined up with other flights, most likely the reds, possibly others, and had set their plans in motion. The attack in the home of the desert crystals was probably only the first step.
Agreeing that they should try to make contact with these groups, they decided, after considerable discussion, to seek out the blue dragons in the Larian Mountains.
Before they could continue with this new task, they had to finish another. Knowing that time was running short, they asked Goat to have someone take some gems containing permanent purifying spells to the lake outside of Kassadin. It was a task that had lead them to the The Crystal Room in the Desert, and one that had cost them more than they had thought it would.
But it also led them to Selestrus. And it was Selestrus who wished to check on this group of blue dragons most, for they were likely all the kin he had left. Decision made, Sindri created a portal to a mountain side which Selestrus had shown him during a brief vision.
Neo was first through the conjured portal, and he felt a slight tug but nothing more as he walked through. Al’ev followed and as he did Sindri felt a slight tug on the portal itself, though it quickly passed. At this time Al’ev heard a whisper “please…” and then he was through with no further incident. The rest of the group followed…..
Straight into the entrance of the blue flight’s lair. Numerous dragons lay within and all were ready to spray their acid breath on the intruders. Selestrus was quick to begin talking.
Only Harry understood all of what was being said. The blue dragons clearly didn’t know Selestrus and he had to explain who he was and what they were all doing there. The blue dragons explained that they wouldn’t be in a position to help them out until the situation they were currently dealing with was handled.
From the sound of things, Harry was able to make out that this group of blue dragons was protecting a village of humans below the cliffs their lair was in. They had a pact. The humans kept their whereabouts secret and the dragons secretly protected the humans from the black dragons that used to plague them. They had only been in contact with one human the duration of their stay there and described him as burly and in his middle age with greying hair. They claimed he scaled the mountainside whenever he visited them in their home.
The blue dragons had recently seen signs of trouble though. White dragon scouts appeared to be in the area. They appeared to be scouting out the village and would likely be bringing back any information to the rest of their brood. That brood was seen in areas not too far from the village. It looked as though an attack was likely within the next few days.
The blue dragons proposed that they would help the adventurers if the adventurers helped them with the white dragons who were threatening the village. Knowing that they had left a job unfinished back in the desert, and desperately wanting to avenge a fallen friend, Al’ev was quick to pledge his support. The rest of the group didn’t hesitate much before they voiced their support as well, though likely for varying reasons.
There was one notable exception, however.
Crim didn’t seem to anxious to help the village at all. In fact, the ninja had taken the time this discussion was happening in and created a rather elegant disguise. He now appeared to be female, and a cleric. Puzzled as to why he was now in disguise, and as to why he seemed so against going down the the village, the group questioned him.
They learned much about the ninja in those next few minutes. Apparently this village was once his home. And apparently the people there would kill him on sight if he went back there. Though he didn’t explain why, it was clear that this was the reason for his disguise and hesitation.
But the ninja knew they had to help his people or he’d see a repeat of what happened the night he ran from the village. He told the rest of the heroes what they needed to do in order to approach the village. The villagers were not fond of outsiders and rarely got visitors aside from the occasional merchant.
Asking for help down the mountain from a blue drake. They were flown down, one person at a time, to a pathway that appeared to lead to the village. They struggled up the rocky terrain and stopped short of the village walls. Crim then told Caramel to shoot a flaming arrow into the sky.
Somewhat puzzled she did as the ninja asked and didn’t get any immediate response. Shrugging, they continued a few more steps forward when Crim and Caramel caught movement. Everyone else did not see the ninjas coming…But they were well aware of their presence when kunai suddenly appeared under their chins and ninjas at their backs.
A strange language was heard in the air. Everyone was at a loss as to what was being said. Everyone except Crim. They were being asked for a password which he gave quickly. Seeming to accept this, the kunai slowly were removed from under their chins and the ninjas slowly backed away from each adventurer.
Then the air was filled with shuriken which all hit the dirt surround them in circles. They were told that stepping outside of these newly formed circles would warrant their deaths. Crim relayed this info as he was approached by a ninja who appeared to be the speaker.
Crim explained they were traveling merchants looking for lodging for the night and that they meant no harm.
This ninja wasn’t buying this excuse, however, and pointed this out when he noted how not one of the travelers appeared to posses the wares or storage capable of holding trade goods. At a bit of a loss, Crim proceeded to his backup plan, The Ritual of Bowls. He slowly presenting a bowl of rations to the speaker. The speaker appeared surprised, but then comprehension dawned on him. He informed the heroes that they would be allowed to stay outside the village until the morning without harm then disappeared along with the other ninjas.
Knowing that he had let too much slip by going through that particular ritual, Crim informed the rest of the group what had occurred. He told them to keep playing the part of merchants, even though it was unlikely the ruse had worked. They set up camp and throughout the night were well aware they were being carefully watched, every now and then catching the sound of twigs breaking outside the camp.
When morning came, they found a single burly, middle aged man waiting at the edge of their camp. Neo went over to talk with him. The man made it known that he wanted to speak with only Crim who, up until this point, thought his disguise had held. His secret out, he put aside the disguise and walked over to the man. Al’ev followed just in case there was trouble. After all, Crim had said these people would kill him on sight.
The discussion was short but intense. Crim was asked if he had returned for his death sentence. Crim countered with a question as to the nature of the approaching white dragon brood and the ninja village’s blue dragon friends.
“Men, you heard nothing.” He said into the open air as though speaking to nobody in particular.
He then let them know that the presence of the blue dragons and their pact was a well guarded secret. Many in the village still held a prejudice against the dragons who had hounded them in the past and were blissfully unaware of the blues living not too far from them.
He also accepted that the adventurers had come to aid the village in a time of need and that the enemy of his enemy was his friend. He lead them into the village after a group of 30 or so ninjas appeared as though from nowhere and surrounded the heroes.
Once inside the walls they saw a village that appeared as though nothing were about to happen. They were told to help prepare for the battle that was to come and then were left alone.
They all began looking around for ways to enhance the villages defenses. After a bit of time, they located three ballista that appeared to be in bad repair. Caramel recognized instantly what was wrong with them and got to work on getting them back into fighting shape.
Meanwhile, Sindri and Al’ev put their own skills to work. Sindri used his powers to create a dome of dirt and sand 10 feet thick over the entire village. He left an entrance that was only slightly too small for the average sized dragon at the farthest point away from the cliffs that the village was nestled against. Al’ev was told that this opening was a structural weak point in the dome. To fix this, he breathed fired on the soil to turn it into glass. It was now one of the strongest points of the whole dome. Satisfied, the two continued to look around for ways to help.
The rest of the group readied themselves and the village as best they could. Grabbing whatever sturdy objects they could and erecting barricades here and there. They’d soon be facing dragons in combat once again. This time they had an entire village to protect. This time they had many allies to back them.
Which was great because when the fight did start, they were expecting a whole brood of white dragons and they weren’t anxious to join their friend Garyuu Reddaile on their list of victims….