In the Footsteps of the Damned; Chapter 6

The first divide on how the group wanted to react and behave…

Chapter 6

A small malnourished white dragon stuck its head tentatively around the gaping doors. I startled and summoned my full powers to do as big of a “punch” as I could on instinct before retreating back – hoping to put some distance between myself and the monster.

Everyone else must have been even more startled and stunned than me, as they did nothing while the dragon let loose a devastating frosty breath attack that belied its small diminutive stature before skulking back into its’ room and using its frost breath again – presumably to try to deter us from pursuing? While this first exhalation did not visibly hit anyone, it frosted over the trapdoor of the pit that Bejard was now trapped in. While I can’t say I have any particular fondness for my companions, I do recognise the fact that I will need them in the days to come if I am to fulfil my calling. With everyone else retreating now, apparently having forgotten about the bear-man, I cautiously stepped forward and jumped down on the trapdoor, smashing it open and falling in once more.

Given that I had just saved him, it didn’t seem that Bejard was too thankful for my actions. I shall remember this! Fi helped me out of the hole and we retreated whilst Bejard opted to feed the blasted thing some of the Elf pudding he had picked up earlier. Oh well, I suppose it works as a distraction to save it from chasing us, and if it is going to get a taste for elf, then that’s one more thing I can use to my advantage…

Backtracking slightly, we heard some more goblin voices through a door – Erki tells us that they are setting a trap! While I am sure that Rake had a good idea in his head, his ability to communicate does us all a disservice – he picked up Erki, knocked on the door and abused the small Halfling into trying to communicate. Our surprise is lost. Bloody Elf. He then shifted into a rat to scout ahead, before making a hasty retreat covered in arrows. Like I said, I am sure he had a plan, but the execution is lacking.

Advancing cautiously, Bejard and Fi spot a number of reddish hobgoblins down the corridor with crossbows – this could be painful, but before I know it, Fi and Bejard manage to down the first one with an expertly placed dart in the eye! Emboldened by their success, I peeked out and blasted the next, blowing his lifeless body into the wall. Smoke shouted something about a wire and then tore off down the corridor – how she didn’t get shot I have no idea! But she ran up to the final hobgoblin and paused before slicing his head off with a very clean riposte! I must say, these companions do have their uses!

We all advanced (myself collecting ears of course), and found a circular room with stairs heading down into a somewhat sickly violet light. Bejard headed back to gather Zani, Erki and Rake who were still a ways back. Of the group, he returned last and seemed marginally shaken… what could that be about, I wonder?

Smoke appears to be entirely consumed by something on the body of the hobgoblin she took down, and I look around the room and gravitate towards a small chest. Inside are a few gems and a potion of healing. I started to pocket the gems, but Fi and Zani caught my eye and showed some curiosity, so I gave them a gem each for their interest.

The item that Smoke had been besotted by appears to be Arnfinn’s ring! We must be on the right track.

Since we entered this room, I have been bugged by a small dead tree – I can’t place it but it has been bothering me. Going closer for a look, I am warned by Fi to stop and back off, whilst she gingerly tries to pick it up. With a quick swipe across her face it suddenly starts writhing before Fi drops it and it scurries downstairs.

While following this creature might not be the sanest course of action, Bejard seems intent to push on – something definitely not right there, but we head down. As we descend, the light grows stronger and we can see there are vines on the walls going all the way down. At the bottom is a dingy cavern full of that glowing fungus we saw in the cathedral room, as well as plenty of animal remains and some skeleton “gardeners” for lack of a better term tending to a whole crop of more of those weird dead trees from upstairs.

Despite Bejards reluctance to go back, even this is too much, and he lets on that there is a threat from behind. I expect that is what has shaken him, and with reasonable reason – that Dragon took my most powerful blast and seemed to shrug it off. We have a group discussion, as it is also getting late in the day, and agree that allowing our defenses to be penetrated doubly, from the front and rear is not a pleasant thought. So eliminating the option of us resting here, we crept back out of these ruins to camp for the night away and in relative safety. On the way out, I caught sight of another door that would have lead to the dragon’s cell that was fully frosted over and blasted open. Indeed, the beast is loose, and I would rather not have it track and surprise us at the worst time. I think we need to kill it, and I would be rather pleased to add a Dragon head to my collection of ears…

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