Lamashan 25 – 26, 4708 AR
As our heroes received healing and discussed their next step, the red, hungry eyes of wraiths circled high above them in the shadowy recesses of the arena basement. These watching undead appeared to scout our stalwart group’s position, then would fly off upwards and beyond the reach of any light.
Not wanted to be the hunted any longer, the Heroes of Sandpoint decided to head upwards, to the arena level and discover once and for all what beast made it’s lair in this place.
Making their way to the arena, our merry band discovered two bone devils, summoned by some unknown being from their lair in the abyss, waiting for our group in the center of the ancient arena floor. Fueled with righteous anger, the Heroes of Sandpoint quickly attacked.
Weapons struck, spells were cast and the devils’ claws, tails and jaws bit deep as the battle raged. The devils were soon joined by one of the dread wraith guardians of the arena, but still our heroes fought their foul foes.
As soon as the tide seemed to turn in our heroes favor, from behind them a malevolent voice hissed, and our group new they had a new foe to deal with.
Charging forth, ice cold, with condescending multifaceted eyes judging our heroes, an ice devil, a Gulegon as Ayra and Lindin could properly name it, attacked with a savage pleasure. The aura surrounding this devil make our heroes quake and proved to be too much for some to overcome, sending members of this mighty band running in fear.
But, those who stayed knew they must not falter and they hefted weapons, readied spells and brought the fight to the devil.
A clash of wills and strength was on exhibit on that cold arena floor; the first battle being waged there in thousands of years. If one had a moment, he or she could almost hear the wild cheers of the crowd and feel the excitement growing as the Heroes of Sandpoint gained the advantage.
This devil, however, wasn’t here to fight to the death. Knowing he was outmatched, the fiend hissed, “I’ll remember you…” and disappeared from the arena. As the devil fled, the wraith that stayed, guarding a luxury box, withdrew, as well.
Then the arena was silent as the Champions of Magnimar stood bloodied, battered…But victorious.
Deciding to investigate the luxury box guarded by the wraiths, Erekhil discovered a hoard, neatly organized in three expensive looking darkwood chests. Passing on coins, leaving them to claim when their meeting with Karzoug is over, our heroes grabbed some gems for spell components and found a second Sihedron Ring then made their way back to the lair of the spared under the darkened sky of the new moon.
Upon their return to their underground sanctuary, the group decided that tomorrow, they’d hunt down the blue dragon that patrolled the skies over Xin-Shalast, eliminating another potential threat they’d face during their inevitable climb to the Spires high on Mhar Massif.
The next morning came and with it a sunny, but windy day. A light snow had fallen during the night, leaving a light layer of pure white snow on the ground. With prayer behind them, and weapons honed and ready, Lindin Vandroxan, the Lord of the Hook, cast a Pass Without Trace spell on the Heroes of Sandpoint, allowing the group to travel without their footprints betraying their whereabouts.
However, they still had to move slowly and cautiously to the old treasury building, home to the blue dragon, to avoid bumping into any band of giant patrols or any giants traveling to or from one of the dozen construction sites throughout the city. Although it was a long process, the group from Sandpoint managed to arrive at the treasury unnoticed.
With discussion behind them, the group followed the keen-eyed sellsword into the ruins of the thick walled treasury, seeking out their dragon foe. And, they found him.
Lounging on a dais that overlooked a wide chamber and statue of the Runelord, Karzoug, the huge creature lazily shifted his head as the heroes entered. Speaking to the group, the creature’s age apparent in the weak, feeble voice, the beast wheezed, “No games, warriors, Ghlorofaex is old. Come closer, I cannot see you well. I tire of this place, so come closer and we shall talk.”
So, the Heroes of Sandpoint stepped closer, then closer still the old thing urged and they headed forward, with Lindin leading the way asking the dragon questions about Karzoug and Xin-Shalast’s defenses.
Then, when our heroes were lined up, with lightning quickness, Ghlorofaex sprang into action. His voice was no longer old and feeble, but harsh and sturdy, and the blue dragon unleashed his breath weapon, a line of devastating electricity upon Lindin, Ayra and Bahne.
The ranger was equally quick as he dodged the electrical assault and the cleric of Calistria and the dwarven fighter, warded by the priestess’s powerful magic, also took no damage. While the Heroes of Sandpoint may at times be foolish, overly trusting, petty, creepy or down right whiny, they are always stalwart warriors ready to stand against any foe, a fact Ghlorofaex quickly realized and the battle was on.
The huge beast’s claws tore into mail and flesh, its teeth biting hard and its wings slapping aside would be foes, but the dragon appeared over eager in his assault on the dwarf, overextending his reach and opening himself to a brutal assault by the dwarf’s mighty hammer.
Unaccustomed to taking such punishment from hammer spell, sword and arrow, Ghlorofaex flew high into the air, strafing the ground with another blast of electricity. But, again, the Heroes of Sandpoint live in a state of “cat-like-readiness” and dodged the line of electricity, and those who can’t dodge, were protected by Ayra’s powerful wards.
As Glorofaex flew over the ruined chamber, from the rear, behind where the dragon had been resting, a lamia matriarch and two lamias charged forth, eager to feast on human, dwarf of elf. Erekhil, closest to the creatures, sprang to the attack, carving thin crimson lines into lamia flesh.
The heroes of Sandpoint now picked their targets and attacked with brutal efficiency as Ghlorofaex landed for another attack, but after taking more unexpected punishment, the beast flew back into the air, up towards the Spires, calling out to the giants in the area to kill the invaders.
Knowing time was not against them; our heroes dispatched the lamia-kin with ruthless efficiency, a skill honed during their months of near ceaseless combat. Finding the dragon’s hoard, the group, again, left coins in favor of gems that could be used as spell components and any magic items they could find.
Gathering their loot, the group gathered with the sounds of approaching giants echoing down the ruined streets, the decided to cast Invisibility on themselves and, after agreeing on the path to take, run back to the home of the Spared.
Once the Invisibility was cast, they were off, sprinting towards their sanctuary. Although it was undisciplined, and each member had to dodge a giant or two during it, they all made it back to the spared, winded, but alive.
As the group scanned the sky and saw Ghlorofaex banking through the clouds, and two more blue dragons and a white joining his hunt, our heroes couldn’t help but feel as though they had some unfinished business with the beast.