- Party Members: Anwar, Dandelus, Faradey, Krrr, Travis
- Place: The Mountain of Chaos
- NPCs: The Witches Three
We went into the mountain to face down the witches and reclaim the Stone Crown. As I recall it was a nasty fight but we succeeded in getting the crown.
Here’s a summary from Kulira’s point of view:
Kulira was chosen to lead the two armies that held the citadel. She would have liked to go back to the mountain and kick some witch but – but no one else could be trusted to keep the Midik “soldiers” and orc warriors from destroying each other. Well, in fairness, Travis probably could have, but he was the ticket into the mountain.
Kulira watched as Travis opened a portal to the top of Chaos Mountain, and had a feeling that it might be the last time she would see her friends. She couldn’t help but shout a parting barb at the group, they would have expected no less.
After the portal closed, Aoife and Mika came up to her, both were worried. “I know,” Kulira told them, “they are incapable of looking out for themselves.”
Time crawled by. The battlements were manned, and combat training was scheduled. Training consists of a band going out into the nearby desert and slaying some of the mobs of Chaos’ minions that were beginning to gather. Hobgoblins, giant snakes, an occasional ogre. The numbers grew every hour. By tomorrow there would be too many to fight against in the open. In two days, thousands.
Kulira had 100 orcs, and about as many trained Midik. They had exact opposite styles. THe ocrs liked heavy armor and heavier weapons. The charged straigt on and hacked until everything was dead. Their war cry was “Carnage!” or sometimes, “Get ’em!”
The Midik were light and wisely timid. They believed in harassing the enemy, and in being mobile. They used flanking and retreating to great effect, but were very vulnerable to actually getting hit. Their war cry was often several minutes long, and refered to great deeds from ancient time, or complicated philosophy of Law over Chaos. Whatever works.
Kulira began to pace. She had called for the orc leaders and the mercenaries of Anwar’s little group to discuss how to best utilize the forces. But she kept wondering what Faradey, Travis, Krr, and Anwar were doing. And Dandelus, too. She checked the time. Twenty three minutes. “They are probably just getting started on the witches, and Krr wanted to cap a giant before they left. Lots of time.”
Just then a portal opened thirty feet away. Kulira was able to see into a dark cave and didn’t like what she saw. Gore was spattered everywhere. Anwar and Faradey were doubled over in pain, Krr lay prone, maybe dead, and Travis was futilely trying to drag him through the portal. Dandelus, barely alive, held the crown and staggered into the courtyard. Beyond the party a powerful looking Stone Guardian prepared to attack, and what must have been one of the Witches Three was casting a spell.
As Kulira shouted an alarm to call the ready troops, she realized that the party must be in an area on silence, because no sound was evident.
Within seconds Dandelus used the crown for some unseen effect, and then fell unconsious from some unknown force. Anwar fell and the guardian pounded him twice, denting mail. His body went limp. Faradey was close, and was able to drag Anwar’s body into the citadel, just as Travis was doing the same for Krr. (Kulira noticed that Faradey’s movements were unusually slow. Probably from a spell).
The Stone Guardian also stepped though the portal, as did something else. Then the portal closed.
The silence continued, making Kulira’s shouts useless, and the party (those two who still lived) could not respond.
The something else that came through the portal filled Kulira’s vision. She knew that behind her several orc warriors, mercenaries, Aoife, and others were already active. But in front of her lumbered a thing, a demon, that defied her senses.
It stood ten feet tall, with rolls of grey fat and long powerful arms. It’s head, small by comparison, housed a mouth full of razor sharp teeth. Perhaps it had once appeared greasy, but now it’s flesh was charred and burned. But that wasn’t what was most disturbing.
As it moved, the air and earth seemed to warp and change around it. This thing did not belong here, and it’s power confused the sun and the stone. It had a smell about it which nauseated, but also brought back the sweetest of childhood memories. It the spell-like silence, with her friends collapsed around her, Kulira squared off against this most terrible foe.