Chapter 4: Hemway in Flames

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  • #1746

    Fenella
    Participant
    • Character Name: Fenella Elspeth
    • Class: Druid
    • Race: Wood Elf
    • Background: Outlander

    Moving quickly to ensure the Purple Lady was well secured and bound Fenella knew she had to be sure not to overlook any small detail and do all she and the others could to keep the prisoner from escaping her confines.

    When she felt that they had accomplished the task at hand she motioned to her companions to follow her to another area out of hearing range of the Purple Lady just incase she started to come to.  Fenella did not want to risk her over-hearing even the least of details she was about to reveal to the others.   It seemed there was not a single area in the Keep that was completely unoccupied.  At last they found a small area where they had several feet from others to gather.

    “When I left to bring the two badly wounded people back here I had an incredible experience that was very much unexpected.  At first I was filled with fear but then oddly I felt an awe overcome me that allowed me to have a conversation with the dragon.  Yes the dragon was waiting for us.  He was at the gate when I returned”, Fenella very quietly began.  She continued “as I approached this is what happened”.

    Fenella tells the others what transpired.

    OOC: I am inserting Mormy’s description of the event as he typed it (yep cut and paste).

    The grate loomed ahead yet no enemies lurked nearby. The guards. There were no guards. The three soldiers that Commander Xeris left at the gate entrance were nowhere to be seen, and yet there were no bodies and no sign of a struggle.

    Then as if a veil had been lifted they appeared. They were laid out on the grass just in front of the grate as if in peaceful slumber, but it was the enormous wall of blue scales that stood just over the grate that commanded Fenella’s immediate attention.

    Even with its head bowed and leaning forward it stood nearly 10 feet high and 12 feet long, with a long 12 foot tail that curled around the bodies of the soldiers in front of it. It’s wings, which would have stretched at least 40 feet from tip to tip were tucked close to the creature’s body as it sat with a relaxed pose.

    A large yellowish bony horn protruded from it’s cobalt blue head. Thick yellow scales covered its chest, but the rest of it was covered in a leathery blue hide that stretched over its shoulders and legs.

    The bishop that had stood next to Fenella dropped and fell to the ground, as did the acolytes and the refuges that were strung out in a line behind her.

    “Don’t panic, they are merely sleeping,” came the deep gravely voice of the dragon. “I wanted our conversation to be private. I was expecting a larger audience but I guess your companions got tied up. No matter. I suppose you will do… Fenella.”

    The dragon’s jaw shifted as it moved it’s tongue about in its mouth as if tasting Fenella’s name as the sound rolled across it’s tongue.

    Furrowing her eyebrows and tilting her head Fenella simply said “you know my name?”.

    “Of course,” the dragon answered. “We dragons have excellent hearing, and I am far older than most. I could hear a mouse squeak from a mile away. I can even hear battle plans being made through several feet of stone while I fly hundreds of feet in the air.” The dragon grinned with self appreciation and Fenella could see sparks of electricity dancing between its teeth.

    “I have been keeping a close eye on your group since you came into town, but we don’t have much time so I will make this quick and cut to the point.”

    “Rezmir has my egg. That alone is why I am here. My home is far from here in the deserts of Lergesia, and that is where I will return as soon as my egg is returned to me. While Rezmir has my egg I am forced to serve him and this army of his.”

    “His camp is near, you should have no trouble finding it. Find my egg and call to me and I give you my oath that I will leave this place. If you refuse or fail in this mission then the war will begin in earnest. If you think you have seen devastation unleashed upon this town then I assure you that you have not seen anything yet. Sure I have slain a few soldiers, and burned a few rooftops – merely to keep up the appearance of cooperation – but if my egg is not returned to me soon then I will have no choice but to unleash my full wrath.”

    “I fear we have more than we can handle and it is all urgent and all needs to be taken care of now.  How do we decide what to do first?” Fenella said looking scared and overwhelmed.

    “Valan’s life is in the balance, the Purple Lady will be awake by the time we get back to her, and the Dragon made it clear our time is running out.  Please what do each of you think we should do?”, pleaded Fenella.

    #1747

    Mirilandil
    Participant
    • Character Name: Mirilandil
    • Class: Ranger
    • Race: Half-Elf
    • Background: Outlander

    Miri shuddered at the memory of the dragon flying overhead.  How terrifying, yet exhilarating it must have been to interact with one!  And how unusual to have survived…

    “Valan is first, ” Miri said matter-of-factly.  “We need him and the villagers owe us a debt of gratitude.  They cannot say no.  The purple lady will be our next ‘project’, as she will awaken and need to be dealt with.  There are some things that just have to follow a certain order, and I think this is what we face this time.”

     

     

    #1748

    Mormy
    Keymaster

    “I will go speak with the Bishop,” Valan announced. “I will meet back up with you when you are ready to question the Purple Lady. Beyond that I don’t think we will be going anywhere until morning.”

    OOC – Valan will leave to speak with the Bishop that was just rescued. The Bishop will have no trouble curing Valan of his affliction since it had not yet had time to take over.

    I had planned to have Valan return to The Way Inn in the morning but he can stay with the party if it is your wish that he do so.

    Currently it is about 10pm at night, 2 hours past dusk when the group arrived in town.

    #1749

    Mormy
    Keymaster

    P.S. Everyone is getting bumped up to level 5 so you can start working on updating your characters when you get a chance.

    #1750

    Brother Sirocco
    Participant
    • Character Name: Brother Roc
    • Class: Monk
    • Race: Human
    • Background: Hermit

    Brother Roc allowed the conversation to carry out between the other members of their rescue group.  After all, he had only joined forces with them when they’d arrived in town.  Their motives and desires for coming to Hemway in the first place were their own, and it was not his place to impose his opinion upon them.  He nodded to Valan as the man went in search of the Bishop, sensing that the group had reached a wise decision.

    For his part, the monk was most interested in rest and healing.  The battle had sorely tested him and but for the good graces of the bear-druid he would have joined the list of fallen in Hemway.  Though up and about he was far from well, and welcomed the chance to rest.

    “The garrison can keep the Purple Lady safely under lock and key for the night.  We can worry about questioning her in the morning.  We all need to rest and recuperate, so I suggest we do that while the chance presents itself.”

    He smiled briefly, a tired expression that still recognized the contributions of everyone toward their success that evening.  And then he went to find a bed, or at least a patch of floor.

    #1751

    Mirilandil
    Participant
    • Character Name: Mirilandil
    • Class: Ranger
    • Race: Half-Elf
    • Background: Outlander

    It had been a frenzied last few hours and Miri felt the weariness that followed such activity.  Relieved that Valan was able to receive the help he needed, she too decided the time was right for much needed rest.

    Finding somewhere out of the way, she lay down and fell promptly asleep, I’rema close by.

     

    #1752

    Jefaris
    Participant
    • Character Name: Jefaris
    • Class: Wizard
    • Race: Human
    • Background: Noble / Merchant

    Like others in the group, Jefaris was ready for some rest. The events of… well, his known memory, have been trying. He nodded briefly as Valan said he’d speak to the bishop. Though he had not known the man long, he had proven to be an invaluable ally on their journey north. He wished no ill will to come to the druid.

    Jefaris let his traveling companions know that he, too, intended to take a moment of rest — but not before he spent time with the magical items they had acquired after their battle with the Purple Lady. “I will spend time with these,” gesturing to the items in his hands to anybody who cared to listen, “and determine what they are. There may be something here in the Purple Lady’s possessions that can help with our latest dilemma.”

    Tired though he was, Jef couldn’t help but succumb to the call of magic. He pulled out a spellbook, taken from the fallen wizard and secreted in his robes, and laid it on the table with the other items.

    This is why he had abandoned his former life. This was why he put his life in jeopardy. This, for all he knew, was why he was branded, his memory stolen. This. The magic. Letting the power of the arcane flow through him, he channeled that energy into the items laid out before him, reaching out with eldritch fingers, unlocking the mysteries and secrets contained within.

    #1753

    Mormy
    Keymaster

    Morning arrived and found the town of Hemway nearly deserted. The raiders had finally finished their business well into the night leaving behind debris and destruction in their wake. Most of the townsfolk had already left the keep and returned to their homes and businesses to survey the damage and to clean up the mess and to attempt to put their lives back together. Only a few of the worst of the wounded remained.

    The morning also found the Purple Lady secured in the dungeons below the Keep under the watchful eye of half a dozen guards as well as Commander Xeris who looked like he had been up all night.

    “She refuses to speak,” Xeris admitted with a weary sigh. “She said she would only talk to you and has been otherwise silent all night. I was getting ready to summon the Bishop to see if he could make her talk, but he has already over extended himself last night and is in need of his rest.”

    The Purple Lady sat silently in her cell on a pile of straw with her back up against the wall, her hands bound behind her back and her mouth gagged.

    #1754

    Jefaris
    Participant
    • Character Name: Jefaris
    • Class: Wizard
    • Race: Human
    • Background: Noble / Merchant

    Jefaris woke the next morning with a mixture of feelings. He was mentally tired.. but in a good way. His examination of the magical trinkets had shown that most of them would be of immediate benefit to the group. The new spellbook also unlocked new understandings for him, yielding several new spells that would also be of immediate use.

    He gathered his possessions and the magical items together and set out in search for his companions. On the way he stopped to check on Venali, who had declined to join them the previous night. A quick search of his simple room revealed it was empty, and upon further investigation an guard revealed that the elven sorcerer slipped out of the keep just prior to the coming of dawn. Jef considered briefly sending a magical missive but decided against it. He would save that for a later time should he learn more about this brand. Or perhaps after a fortnight he would magically ask if Venali had learned anything new.

    He had stopped his companions prior to entering the dungeons. “I have completed my studies,” he said without preamble, gesturing to the small pile of weapons and armor on the floor. “There are items here which could be of use to us. This,” he gestured to the new staff he was wielding, “is one of arcane power, imbued with spells of fire. I believe I am the only one among us with arcane power enough to use it. These,” he gestured to the halberd and great sword, “are probably of little use to any of us. The sword is rather simple, granting a more sure and stronger strike. The halberd though, inflicts magical damage when dealing a strong blow. You all seem to favor lighter or ranged weapons, so these we can trade for something better I think. Likewise with the chain armor worn by our captive.”

    “This,” he toed the leather armor, “would likely serve us well. Not only does its magic offer additional protection, it has been imbued with magic such that you can alter its appearance. I tried it myself, but not being accustomed to such armor, the best I could do was to get it to change color. My studies say somebody who is comfortable with the armor can make it take on the appearance of any clothing or armor they wish. A useful ability if a disguise is needed.”

    Removing the pendant from his robes, he leveled his eyes on their newest acquaintance, Brother Roc. “This, I think, will be of interest to you. If you are brought to near death, it will keep you from dying. It also causes you to regain your strength faster. This was why the Purple Lady was already starting to show signs of healing immediately after she fell. You seem to be a front line fighter and would be the one to most benefit from it, or so I feel at least.”

    Removing from another inner pocket, he had three items in his hand. “This curious item,” gesturing at an owl shaped figurine, “causes a serpentine owl to be summoned under your control. It can be used once each day to summon the creature. This ring will prevent its wearer from becoming slowed, paralyzed, or restrained. As for this,” he fingered the black pearl, “it can refresh the users mind enough so they can recover a spent spell for the day.”

    OOC: Jefaris will lay claim to the staff since it is usable only by a wizard, sorcerer, or warlock. The other items he had made assumptions on their use, so the weapons and chain armor he basically feels can be bartered or traded, sold, whatever. The pendant made sense for a front line fighter, but it is only Jef’s suggestion so if there is other interest please express it. The ring, pearl, and statue he feels can benefit multiple people in the group so has just presented what they are. The pearl is the only additional item he would feel he can benefit from, but since the staff (and spell book) he’s claimed already, he won’t push the issue since there are other casters that could use the item.

    Here are the full “technical” descriptions of the items below:

    Staff of Fire (carried by red robed wizard)
    Requires Attunement by a Sorcerer, Warlock, or Wizard

    You have Resistance to fire damage while you hold this staff.

    The staff has 10 Charges. While holding it, you can use an action to expend 1 or more of its Charges to cast one of the following Spells from it, using your spell save DC: Burning Hands (1 charge), Fireball (3 charges), or Wall of Fire (4 charges).

    The staff regains all expended Charges daily at dawn. If you expend the last charge, roll a d20. On a 1, the staff blackens, crumbles into cinders, and is destroyed.

    ===============================================

    Chain Mail +1 (Worn by Purple Lady)

    ===============================================

    Vicious Halberd (carried by Purple Lady)
    damage 1d10+1
    10ft reach

    When you roll a 20 on your attack roll with this magic weapon, the target takes an extra 7 damage of the weapon’s type.

    ===============================================

    Greatsword +2 (carried by Sir Greatsword obviously)

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    Glamoured Leather Armor (light armor, worn by Sir Greatsword)

    While wearing this armor, you gain a +4 bonus to AC (AC 14 +Dex modifier). You can also use a bonus action to speak the armor’s command word and cause the armor to assume the appearance of a normal set of clothing or some other kind of armor. You decide what it looks like, including color, style, and accessories, but the armor retains its normal bulk and weight. The illusory appearance lasts until you use this property again or remove the armor.

    ===============================================

    Periapt of Wound Closure (5 headed dragon pendant worn by Purple Lady)
    Requires Attunement

    While you wear this pendant, you stabilize whenever you are dying at the start of Your Turn. In addition, whenever you roll a Hit Die to regain Hit Points, double the number of Hit Points it restores.

    ===============================================

    Figurine of Wondrous Power (Serpentine Owl, carried by Purple Lady)

    A 3 inch tall figurine of an owl that looks like it was carved from a piece of jade.

    A figurine of wondrous power is a statuette of a beast small enough to fit in a pocket. If you use an action to speak the command word and throw the figurine to a point on the ground within 60 feet of you, the figurine becomes a living creature.

    The creature is friendly to you and your companions. It understands your languages and obeys your spoken commands. If you issue no commands, the creature defends itself but takes no other actions.

    Serpentine Owl: This serpentine statuette of an owl can become a giant owl for up to 8 hours. Once it has been used, it can’t be used again the next dawn. The owl can telepathically communicate with you at any range if you and it are on the same plane of existence.

    ===============================================

    Pearl of Power (black pearl carried by Purple Lady)
    Requires Attunement by a Spellcaster

    While this pearl is on your person, you can use an action to speak its Command Word and regain one expended spell slot. If the expended slot of of 4th level or higher, the new slot is 3rd level. Once you have used the pearl, it can’t be used again until the next dawn.

    ===============================================

    Ring of Free Action (gold filigree ring worn by Purple Lady)
    Requires Attunement

    While you wear this ring, difficult terrain doesn’t cost you extra Movement. In addition, magic can neither reduce your speed nor cause you to be Paralyzed or Restrained.

    #1755

    Fenella
    Participant
    • Character Name: Fenella Elspeth
    • Class: Druid
    • Race: Wood Elf
    • Background: Outlander

    Satisfied that the group has agreed on what to do and is need of sleep Fenella says to them “rest well, I will meet you at dawn to speak to the Purple Lady”.

    As Fenella looks for a place to rest for the night she walks among the villagers and feels a sense of satisfaction that the toll taken on the group was well worth it.   Happy to see them all safely sleeping for the night Fenella finds a spot and joins them in rest.

    As dawn breaks Fenella has already been awake for awhile and she is already at the entrance to the dungeon waiting for the others.   As Jefaris enters she can tell he has examined the items claimed from the night before.  “Good news I suspect?” she says to him as he approaches.

    OOC: I would like the Owl figurine. Or the armor would be okay too, either one.  I’ll let Miri decide what she wants first.

    #1756

    Mormy
    Keymaster

    OOC – You can continue to back post to talk over the item distribution, I am assuming the meet up in the dungeon with the Purple Lady happened afterwards once the group was back together.

    —————-

    “Remove her gag, but keep a close watch on her,” Commander Xeris said with a gesture to one of the guards. Then he turned his attention on the Purple Lady as the guard opened her cell and pulled the gag away from her mouth. “If you show any sign of casting a spell then my men will kill you.”

    “Really?” the Purple Lady said with barely a smile and a raised eyebrow. “Twelve of you against one and you are worried about me? You flatter me.”

    “My warning was for your own benefit,” Xeris answered. “I just don’t want you to throw away your life by trying something stupid before we have finished with you. Now you said you would speak once these folks arrived and here they are, so now speak.”

    “I will answer your questions, but first I wish to speak with them alone,” the Purple Lady insisted.

    Xeris turned a questioning look at the group looking for some reaction on their faces that would explain what the woman had to say to them that required their being alone, then turned back to the Purple Lady with a deep frown.

    “You will speak what you have to say now,” Xeris insisted.

    For a moment the Purple Lady remained stubbornly quiet, but finally she spoke once more.

    “You wish to know why we raided your town, do you not? You wish to know the cult’s plans and how you fit into them, and where they will be going next. You may have captured me, but Rezmir is the one you are after. He is the one in charge. I will tell you his plans and everything you wish to know, but first I wish to speak with them alone. Grant me this, or I will tell you nothing,” the Purple Lady said with a defiant look at Commander Xeris.

    “Very well,” Xeris replied after another long pause. “But my guards and I will be right outside so don’t try anything foolish.”

    The Purple Lady rolled her eyes at the warning but refrained from any snide remarks as she watched the guards one by one leave the room, followed by Xeris himself after passing her a warning glance before shutting the door behind him.

    “Alone at last,” the Purple Lady said with a conspiring smile. “We have not yet been properly introduced. My name is Aquila. Rezmir has spoken of you. You have grown greatly in power. Quite impressive considering that you are only 5 days old. Rezmir would be proud.”

    • This reply was modified 1 week, 3 days ago by  Mormy.
    • This reply was modified 1 week, 3 days ago by  Mormy.
    #1759

    Mirilandil
    Participant
    • Character Name: Mirilandil
    • Class: Ranger
    • Race: Half-Elf
    • Background: Outlander

    (ooc) I will post later about items.  That sort of stuff, necessary as it is, bores me to death.  But I am grateful for the items!!

     

    (IC)Miri regarded the woman before her, someone she recognized as being extremely adept at manipulation.  Her tattoo suddenly itched terribly, yet she remained stoic, not letting her discomfort show.

    “I must tell you how relieved I am to know that we may have gained this Rezmir’s admiration,” she said drily. “It is all we ever wanted.”

    “You speak as though you know much of our inception.  What are you going to tell us?  Speak now so that we may be done with you. “

    #1760

    Brother Sirocco
    Participant
    • Character Name: Brother Roc
    • Class: Monk
    • Race: Human
    • Background: Hermit

    Brother Roc stiffened when Aquila mentioned Rezmir so brazenly, and then in favourable reference to those he had assisted throughout the raid last night.  Had he been duped?  Was this all part of some larger plan to infiltrate the castle?  His eyes narrowed and he cautiously put himself near a wall, should he need his back watched.

    It seemed impossible though.  Why would they have killed others of the order, and fought against the dragon, and saved all those people?  And saved him?  There must be something more going on here, he realized.

    And what was this about ‘five days old’?  With such strange proclamations the monk stayed alert and ready, but with curious ears to hear the explanation for it all.

    #1761

    Jefaris
    Participant
    • Character Name: Jefaris
    • Class: Wizard
    • Race: Human
    • Background: Noble / Merchant

    Jefaris narrowed his eyes at the Purple Lady before briefly turning his back on the woman. Pulling his hands from the pocket of his robes, he clenched his fists, obviously in frustration, and whispered a few words to himself. He released the tension in his body, his hands becoming more relaxed, as he turned his gaze on the Purple Lady. He said nothing but stared at her expectantly.

    #1762

    Mormy
    Keymaster

    “Yes, I know of you,” Aquila replied. “You are a product of one of Rezmir’s bygone experiments. He has since moved on from cloning rich thrill seekers and joined the ranks of the Wyrmspeakers. Now he is applying his talents cloning dragon hatchlings.”

    Aquila paused for a moment to look upon the faces of the companions to gauge their reaction to the implication of her words.

    “With Rezmir’s induction into the ranks, the Cult of the Dragon has shifted it’s goals of worshiping dragons to controlling them, starting with their young and soon to work their way up.”

    “Don’t think, however, that Rezmir has left you out of his plans. You are still one of his favored creations and he will expect you to feature in a staring role sooner or later, and when the time comes you will be powerless to resist,” Aquila’s face dropped into a dour frown as though she was sympathetic to the companion’s plight.

    “That is unless you decide to accept my help. Or rather you agree that we help each other. I have no desire to serve Rezmir any more than you do, but like you soon will be should you refuse my offer, I am compelled to obey.”

    “Join me and together we can stop him and put an end to this terrible reign that he would inflict upon this world.”

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