Keep on the Borderlands

6. Strong Fire

10/27/10: No Ryan Wade this week... John Reilly jumped in for about 3 minutes until Josh showed up.

Eldeth - Dwarf Slayer
Merric - Halfling Thief
Rolf - Dragonborn Barbarian
Tornam - Dwarf Cleric
Varian - Eladrin Mage
...and special guest star John Reilly as Killvilli

The heroes were in Dragontooth Hill, where Ronnik's cult of Tiamat lurked. They had just defeated a band of kobolds and were bandaging themselves up before continuing on. A dwarf by the name of Killvilli arrived to aid them.

Gloomhandler, Merri's imp, declared that Merric would be receiving all of the treasure found in Dragontooth Hill, as he clearly had done all the work in the previous fight.

Killvilli took an instant dislike to the imp. He said, "Well here's the question, Impy - and I'm calling you Impy whether you like it or not..."

Gloomhandler interrupted. "Who are you and where did you come from?" she asked, annoyed.

"If there's any treasure," the dwarf continued, "we should divide it evenly. As in, the dwarf gets 75%, and everyone else gets nothing."

Gloomhandler said "You don't know who you're dealing with. This is Merric. He lives in the shadows. He has a collection of spines of those who have displeased him." She whispered to Merric, "Don't worry master, I'll keep an eye on him. Perhaps if he falls down in the next battle, he'll have an... 'accident'".

Varian piped up. "Listen, Goonhandler, don't make me take my sidekick out and have him hump your leg." Varian's poop-eating demon Francis looked around excitedly.

Gloomhandler was offended. "Oh that's so inappropriate." She flew into Merric's pack.

There was a cliff leading to the next area. Killvilli scaled the 20 foot obstacle, and found a coiled rope nailed to the rock. He lowered the other end so his allies could easily scale the cliff. He argued more with Gloomhandler.

Past the cliff was a carved, lit room. Inside lurked many kobolds. The room was dominated by an altar with a glowing, fiery rune carved on it. The adventurers decided to creep in and get a surprise attack on the kobolds. But Killvilli suddenly tripped and fell over the side of the cliff, shouting the whole way down. He landed with a loud thud which knocked him unconscious and alerted the kobolds to the heroes presence (this is when Josh showed up and replaced John Reilly).

The kobolds' leader was a wyrmpriest. He lead the kobolds in a chant of "Ixenstrix!". As they chanted, the rune on the altar and the fiery braziers pulsed in rhythm. Rolf knew that "Ixenstrix" meant "strong fire".

3 Kobold quickblades closed in on the heroes in the entrance. One sliced Eldeth. 4 Kobold tunnelers further back in the room flung javelins at Varian. Three struck the eladrin. Francis climbed on his body, pulled out a javelin, and began to slurp the wound.

Tornam healed Varian with a spell as he closed in on a quickblade. Eldeth harged the length of the room and engaged a quickblade near a column. Tornam was hit with a volley of javelins. Then the wyrmpriest hit him with an ice or spell, and used the rune to hit him with a fireball. The dwarf was bloodied and hurt badly. Back by the cliff, Merric tossed knves at the kobolds. Gloomhandler nervously pointed out an escape route. The battle was going very poorly for the heroes.

Varian cast an arc lightning spell that struck two quickblades. Tornam healed himself with a spell. Then he struck a quickblade with his hammer, bloodying it. Eldeth bloodied her quickblade too, with a poised strike from her great axe. Rolf cleaved a kobold's head in two with his halberd.

The kobolds rallied, cutting the heroes. Three javelins hit Varian, bloodying him. The wyrmpriest produced a fireball from the fire rune which hit Rolf and dropped him! The barbarian was dying... (This is how many hit points the PCs had left... Tornam: 6 Eldeth: 4 Rolf: 0 Varian: 4 Merric: Full hit points).

Gloomhandler urged Merric to flee. Merric instead charged into battle. Gloomhandler said "Such courage! I'm swooning, master."

Varian killed a tunneler with arc lightning. Then the eladrin yelled out that he needed healing "from your lame-ass god".  Tornam bloodied a quickblade and then struck it again to kill it. Then he backed up to the cliff, as he was hurt very badly.  

Eldeth was deep in the room and bleeding badly. She held up her symbol of Clarissa and said: "Clarissa! Your children have need of you!". Suddenly, the Sword of Clarissa appeared behind the quickblade! Clarissa's sword stabbed the kobold in the back, causing it to shriek in agony. Eldeth then cut off the kobold's head with her great axe.

The wyrmpriest shrieked in terror when he saw the sword. He shot an ice orb into Merric and then with the fireball. The halfling was bloodied. Eldeth closed in on the trembling wyrmpriest. Clarissa's sword teleported behind it. The sword stabbed the priest in the back, and then Eldeth delivered a massive blow to the wyrmpriest (for 22 points with a critical!). The wyrmpriest stumbled back, grabbing at the massive chest wound.

Tornam knelt down next to Rolf and patched him up, resuscitating the dragonborn barbarian (he made a heal check and used it to let Rolf second wind). Rolf got to his feet, hoisted his halberd and charged a tunneler. He killed it with a single blow, and then turned and charged the wyrmpriest! The wyrmpriest shouted in terror as the barbarian cut him in half.

Only two kobold tunnelers remained. Rolf said to them in Draconic: "I killed two of your friends, and now you're going to die." They dropped their javelins and begged for mercy. Merric threw a dagger into one's heart. Varian killed the other with a magic missile.

The battle was over. Clarissa's sword hovered before Eldeth and healed the dwarf with fire. Then the sword disappeared in a fiery burst.

It had been a deadly battle, but the heroes had persevered. They could only wonder if they had it in them to survive what lay ahead...