The group wakes up in the Halfmoon inn. Dire, crawling out of the bag of Holding, uses his streetwise training to get his bearings and catch up on what he missed. He notices a huge tower to the northeast. He learns it is called the Tower of Saruun. As he watches, mages teleport in and out of the tower, there seems to be no door. He also learns that there is a custom house the mages use to hire mercenaries. Waking up the rest of the group, he urges them to go to the custom house to get a feel for the mage’s purpose.
They enter the custom house and see a man behind the counter. He introduces himself as Orentar, and asks how he can help this fine group of adventurers. As they start explaining that they need to reach the Bloodreaver headquarters, Orentar starts shaking his head sadly. He says “We sent one of our best mages out to find their hideout weeks ago. I fear he has not returned, and that we will never see poor Paldamar again.”
Aelar volunteers that he knows the way, and says if they find Paldamar they will be sure to aid him. Orentar says that the Mages of Saruun would be happy to pay for the safe return of the mage.
The group sets out into the labyrinth, Aelar in the lead. As they march, they come upon four undead warriors. Kiera warns the group to stay back, they look like Wights. Using stealth, she sneaks up on them. One of the four is obviously the leader, and she sees a key with a skull on it around his neck. Using her thievery training, she shoots an arrow across the thing’s chest, yanking the key off its neck and pinning it to the wall of the tunnel. Completely unaware, the wight keeps shuffling slowly forward. Kiera grabs the key and rushes back the to group.
“Hey guys, I got this key. Help me find where it goes before they come back.” Meriele scans the ground and sees that the ground leading off down a small tunnel is unscuffed. The wights seem to never go down this way. Davnan happily squeezes through the gap and reports that the crevice seems to go a long ways. Joining him, the group creeps through the tight passage. It begins to widen out as the air gets hotter and hotter. Soon the walls are too hot to touch. Dire isn’t bothered by the heat at all, so he leads the way. Kiera says “It’s cause he sold his soul to Satan.” “No, my GRANDPARENTS did.”
They come to a stop at a huge door with an embossed skull on it. Kiera unlocks it with the key and shoves it open with her shoulder. Zanvard moves up to flank her, there’s no way to know what could be waiting.
The door swings on its hinges and reveals a large, dilapidated hall. Light is leaking in from a hole in the roof, shining on an altar with the corpse of a sheep. As they enter the room, a screech is heard and a quickly moving shadow flies over their heads. Another sheep falls from the sky and lands near the altar. The shadow swoops around again and lands in front of the party. A young black dragon hisses at them as its scales absorb the light, making it hard to spot.
Zanvard says “Hello dragon, are you bad?” It roars back. Kiera says “Does anyone speak Draconic? (beat.) Gosh darn it Thun-Thun!” Davnan says “It’s a black dragon right? Maybe we’re not speaking in its dialect. Does anybody speak Jive?”
The dragon moves, raising its wings and screaming. This Frightful Presence stuns the entire party, they just stand there, staggered. The dragon uses this chance to breath Acid Breath on everyone but Meriele and Aelar. Their armor is greatly damaged and they start getting wounded by the acid. Then it summons a Cloud of Darkness, blinding Zanvard and Kiera and hiding in the cloud.
Zanvard tries to rely on his senses, swinging his morningstar in the blinding cloud. He narrowly avoids hitting Kiera, but the dragon is hiding well. Kiera runs out of the darkness and ducks behind a pillar. Then she shoots into the center of the cloud, but doesn’t hit anything. Davnan feels a pang of sadness over his fallen friend Galstaff. He says “Hey guys, this time we literally can attack the darkness.” as he rushes in and swings his hammer in a different part of the cloud. He misses.
Aelar tries to smash it with his Force Hammer, but can’t focus well enough through the cloud. Meriele uses Grasping Tide on a portion of the cloud, but the dragon isn’t trapped inside. Meriele uses Fire Hawk to slash at the dragon. Davnan zeroes in on the youngling and hits him with his hammer. Zanvard hears a scuffling noise and charges at it, smashing into the dragon. He gets up and conks it on the nose with Solenoid Hammer. It hisses and tries to fly away. As it does, Davnan and the Fire Hawk slash at it. It screams and lands outside the cloud of darkness. It breathes out more acid, but misses and then puts up another cloud of darkness. Aelar hits it with Force Hammer, knocking it prone. Kiera closes her eyes, relying on her keen eleven hearing to guide her aim. She turns, pulls, releases. The lightning arrow streaks through the air into the roiling cloud. As scream echoes around the chamber as the cloud dissipates and the writhing body of the young dragon is revealed. Kiera walks forward and slides her short sword into its heart, putting it out of its misery.
Flush with the adrenaline of victory, but somehow not proud of killing such a proud beast, the heroes collapse where they stand, catching their breath and tending their wounds.
Will there be repercussions for killing his dragonling? What is an altar doing in this abandoned chamber? Why did the Wights have a key to it? Does this have anything to do with the Bloodreavers? Find out next week, on DragonCast! THUN-THUN-THUN!!!