Last time, having escorted the group of freed kobold prisoners back to the kobold areas of the citadel, the party decides to bring their new friend Erky back to the locked door that barred their way previously. Erky determines that one of his clerical spells may help, and after casting a spell on the door, the door does in fact unlock, revealing what appears to be a tomb with an altar and several sarcophagi present. Civic decides to inspect some items on the altar, as the rest search the room, where Fenora finds a small collection of carved jewels. Determining the items on the altar to be magical, Civic removes the items from the altar, which awakens the tomb’s residents—a group of undead skeletons. The undead creatures prove to be no match for the party, and they are quickly returned to their rest.
Returning to the northern tunnels and the goblins’ domain, the party checks out some of the other doors they’d seen before. While moving to inspect one of the doors, Quinton overlooks another trapdoor, and is tumbled into a pit filled with rotten flesh and bones. The fall doesn’t hurt much more than his ego, however, and with an assist from Garl, climbs out of the pit. Between Quinton and Meepo, they secure the hatch in place, and inspect the door, which opens to reveal several goblins who attack on sight. As before, the goblins prove no match for the heroes, and they are quickly slain.
Beyond the other door in the area they find a much more elaborately, though shabbily, furnished room, filled with broken furniture and several taxidermied animal heads. An iron spike in the middle of the room draws their attention, as well as the coating of ice on several surfaces. Moving into the room, a shuffling noise reveals itself to be a white dragon wyrmling, which Meepo identifies as Calcryx as he moves in to the greet the dragon. But the young dragon belches a blast of ice, which freezes Meepo solid. The frozen goblin crumbles in place, killing him immediately. The dragon accuses the party of allying with the kobolds, and attacks. The heroes defend themselves, but not wishing to kill it outright, they manage to defeat Calcryx by knocking the creature unconscious.
Now, what do they do with an unconscious, yet extremely angry baby dragon?
Erky Timbers: So, now what?
Gishkaa Khesh’Shaarat: If we’re taking this thing back to the kobolds, how are we dragging it there?
Erky Timbers: What would be the point in doing so?
Civic: All in favor of taking it back for the kobolds to keep as a pet?
Civic does not raise his hand, as he looks around at the rest of the party.
Garl Auraspeaker: I vote we heal him and drop him at the kobolds’ doorstep. See how they like a dragon that’s not chained up.
Gishkaa Khesh’Shaarat: I’m not a fan of slavery for thinking creatures.
Fenora Finnley: Agreed, this poor thing deserves a little revenge for how it was mistreated.
Civic: Ok, all in favor of killing it out right?
Gishkaa frowns and shakes her head
Erky Timbers: And even if you were to heal the creature, there’s no guarantee it would last long to do… what you expect it to do. After all, the kobolds must have overpowered it once before.
Gishkaa Khesh’Shaarat (snorts in disgust): Probably overpowered it when it was in its egg, still.
Erky Timbers (shrugs as he nods in agreement): Perhaps.
Civic (looks around at the others): All in favor of relocating it someplace where it can recover and is close to the kobolds, where it can choose to get revenge if it wishes?
One by one, the adventurers raise their hands to vote for this new plan.
Civic: Very well. Let’s give this beast something it hasn’t had so far in it’s life. Choice. The rats nest we cleared out has a route out of the citadel if it chooses. It’s in an area the kobolds don’t seem to go, which would make it safe for a time, and we’re clearing out the goblins in the area. That could make a good home, temporary or permanent for it.
Erky Timbers: I don’t know where you mean, but if it gives the creature a chance at a free life, then it would seem the kindest measure we could take.
Fenora Finnley: Hmmm, I was a little worried about it not having time to recover before throwing it in with the kobolds.
Quinton Greymane: That seems the fairest way. I don’t feel right giving him over to the kobolds since they’re just making a slave of him.
Gishkaa Khesh’Shaarat: Well unless someone has major concerns with that option, lets get to it. It isn’t going to be out forever.
Garl Auraspeaker (grumbles): Well we can still kill the kobolds, though, right?
Quinton Greymane: We’ll give them a talkin’ to, that’s for sure!
Civic: We may end up in conflict with them for not returning the dragon. We’ll see.
Erky Timbers: I can’t imagine they’ll look too kindly on your having set their pet loose. Or having allowed their friend to be killed.
Gishkaa Khesh’Shaarat (moves to the dragon and lifts it’s tail): This thing isn’t going to move itself.
With that, the rest of the party move to aid in moving the unconscious dragon into and down the hallway. Civic lags behind a few steps, taking a moment to give a quick search of the chamber, suspecting that the baby dragon may have begun a hoard while it was hidden here. Beneath the table from where it had emerged, he find a collection of items: some fine silverware, a goblet of crystal, a jade statuette of a dragon, and an elaborately carved scroll case emblazoned with runes along its side. He gathers the items into a small piece of cloth, and hurries to catch up with the others, opening the scroll case as he walks. Inside the scroll case is a rolled sheet of parchment. Unrolling the paper, Civic finds that age and water damage have destroyed most of it, but the remnants a runish script still remain.
As a group, the party push and pull the unconscious dragon to the recently vacated rats nest. Several times, the dragon snorts and moves in its sleep, but remains unconscious. It take about 45 minutes to successfully move the dragon to the balcony room. They drag the dragon to the center of the room, then quickly dash into the hallway, closing the door behind them.
Quinton Greymane (noticing Civic’s bounty): So what you got there?
Civic: I found it’s hoard. Should we leave it for the dragon to hopefully gain some good will if we encounter it again, or add it to our loot?
Garl Auraspeaker (growls angrily): We beat him fair and square. He’s lucky we don’t kill him!
Gishkaa Khesh’Shaarat: Honestly, I don’t know if it’s smart enough to understand a gesture like that.
Erky Timbers: I don’t know much about the dragons, but my studies have indicated that the white variety are not known as the smartest of the lot. At the very least, you have given the creature a chance. It is more than it would have offered you.
Civic: That’s true. I feel we’ve done well with a difficult situation.
Garl Auraspeaker (rolls up his sleeves): Yep, now all we have to do is kill some kobolds.
Quinton Greymane: ahem
Gishkaa Khesh’Shaarat (looks at Quinton and nods): We should get back to searching.
Quinton Greymane: I think we should find the kids before running off on a genocide.
Garl Auraspeaker: Hehe, alright, fair point.
Erky Timbers (ignores Garl): At the very least, you’ve done the best you can under the circumstances. While it is likely to mature into a cruel, vicious creature, no living being should be the slave of another species.
Quinton Greymane: Well said, Erky.
Erky Timbers: So now, which way?
Quinton Greymane: Let’s head back to the dragon room and keep looking.
The party makes their way quickly and quietly back through the tunnels, heading back to the dragon’s lair room. Once there, Garl impatiently opens the door to the south. Beyond the door, several torches mounted in crude sconces burn fitfully around this chamber, filling the air with a haze. A double row of marble columns carved with entwining dragons runs the length of the hall. As the party peers into the haze-filled room, Gishkaa moves stealthily ahead of the group in the shadows cast by the pillars. She gives the nearest door a thorough once over, and, finding it to be unlock and free of traps, she opens the door onto a short hallway which seems to open into a larger area just around the corner. Unseen, she dashes into the hall as the rest of the party enter the columned chamber.
Civic: The craftsmanship is quite impressive
Quinton Greymane: It looks nice, but we got more rooms to check as well.
Garl Auraspeaker (mocks Quinton with his hands): Blah blah blah. Let’s just open the next one.
Quinton Greymane (nods): Guess we’ll check it out.
Meanwhile, Gishkaa has moved through the adjoining corridor, and carefully makes her way through the door to the south, entering the haze-filled room. With a sly grin, she begins to make her way around the edge of the room, intending to sneak up on the rest of the party. However, as she skirts past the door to the west, she strips over a small stone, which skitters across the floor to clatter against the southern door. Garl and Quinton whip around, their weapons drawn.
Gishkaa Khesh’Shaarat (grins, hands out): Boo…?
Garl Auraspeaker (chuckles): Great surprise…
As Gishkaa sheepishly moves to join the rest of the party, the southern door suddenly flies open, and a trio of goblins run out and attack! Garl slams his mace into the first one, badly damaging the creature’s shoulder, as another slices at Quinton with its rusty scimitar, cutting a jagged slash across the man’s torso. The third fires an arrow into Garl’s stomach, blood bursting from the sudden wound. The goblin Garl hit with his mace retaliates with an attack of its own, slicing it’s blade through the meat of the dragonborn’s thigh. Civic points at the injured goblin and the sound of a distant bell rings out. As it does, the goblins wounds seem to tear open even further and the goblin falls to the ground, dead.
Fenora fires an arrow at one of the goblins, but the creature is moving too quickly, and the arrow flies wide. Gishkaa dashes in and slashes a blade of psionic energy through the throat of one of the goblins. It clutches at the deadly wound, as it falls to the floor to bleed out. Erky steps forward and thrusts a hand out at the remaining goblin. A bolt of radiant light erupts from the palm and slams into the goblin’s chest, blasting it back into the column behind it. The goblin collapses dead at the pillar’s base.
Quinton Greymane: Sneaky goblins. Let’s take a breather for a minute.
Garl Auraspeaker (clutching his wounds): Yeah, bloody goblins got me good that time.
Quinton Greymane: Serves you right for running in and thinking with your mace instead of your head.
Garl Auraspeaker (rolls his eyes): Yes, dad.
Quinton Greymane (shaes his head): Some dragonborn never learn.
The adventurers retreat back to the dragon’s lair, taking some time to patch up their latest wounds. Close to an hour later, their wounds staunched and bandaged, they prepare to move on.
Erky Timbers (to Garl): You’d best be careful going forward, my friend. I have but one healing spell remaining, until we can find a safe place to camp for the night. I would hate to fail in keeping you alive.
Gishkaa Khesh’Shaarat: I’d also hate that.
Garl Auraspeaker: Ah, I’ll be fine, Quinton is just a worrywart. Has been for 20 years.
Erky Timbers: Quinton wasn’t the one on death’s door step, Garl.
Garl Auraspeaker (waves his hand dismissively at Erky): You’re just as bad as Quinton.
Civic: Are you only 20 years old Quinton? I thought you were older, but I’m not good at judging age.
Quinton Greymane gives Civic a look.
Civic: What? He said you’ve been a worrywart for 20 years…I just assumed that was your natural state since birth.
Garl Auraspeaker: Hahaha!
Quinton Greymane (sighs): I’ve known Garl for 20 years.
Garl Auraspeaker: No, no, Civic makes a good point. You’ve been a worrywart for 39 years.
Gishkaa Khesh’Shaarat [in Goblin]: And they haven’t killed each other yet. Impressive.
[in Common] Regulators, mount up!
As they enter back into the haze-filled corridor, movement towards the western end of the hall draws their attention. A goblin crouches over the bodies of its fallen brethren, inspecting its wounds. It hears the party’s approach, its head snapping up startled, before it dashes through the western door, slamming it shut behind it.
Quinton Greymane: Well, guess we know where to head next.
Garl Auraspeaker (eagerly): I’m all for slapping a few goblins around.
Garl stomps across the hall to the western door, throwing it open with a snarl. Beyond the door, what might once have been a cathedral is now a goblin lair, thick with the filth of years of goblin life. Scores of wall and floor-mounted sconces filled with violet-glowing fungi provide illumination. Dozens of goblins go about their daily business, which involves a lot of rudeness and violence. Along the southern wall is a heaping pile of assorted items, including wagon wheels, broken armor and rusted arms, chests, small statues, antique furniture, and artwork.
As Garl’s form fills the door way, the room full of goblins turns to stare at the dragonborn. At a glance, it is clear that most of these creatures are in no shape to fight, being elderly or infirm. With a chorus of scared yelps, they begin moving toward the northern part of the chamber.
Gishkaa Khesh’Shaarat [in Goblin]: Run, you idiots!
Quinton Greymane: Well looks like all them goblins are heading for the hills
Erky Timbers: Aye, probably for the best. Most of them looked feeble. I do not think my patron would look too favorably on my aiding in harming the helpless.
As most of the goblins begin to flee, four remain behind, snatching up their weapons as the move to engage with the intruding party. By now, the party has a good sense of the goblin’s tactics, and quickly cuts through their meager defenses. As the last of the goblins flees the room, a peaceful silence falls over the room.
Garl Auraspeaker: I wonder if they won’t have any of their friends come back this way. We should keep an eye out.
Quinton Greymane: True, but better than killing a bunch of people that can’t defend themselves.
As Gishkaa moves to the pile of goods on the southern wall, a roar of anger echos through the halls. The door on the rounded wall to the northwest suddenly bursts open, as several creatures emerge. As they see you standing there, they raise their weapons in challenge, and move in to attack!
Garl Auraspeaker: Told you so.
Gishkaa Khesh’Shaarat (grins eagerly): Looks like the entertainment has arrived.
A trio of hulking hobgoblins enage the party, along with a wrinkled gnome shaman and one of the strange trig blights they’d encountered before. A well aims arrow from Fenora shatters the twig blight to kindling as it dashes into the fray. Gishkaa slashes at the nearest hobgoblin with her psionic blade, but narrowly misses the beast. Erky says a quick prayer, calling down a blessing on his friends.
Erky Timbers: Try not to die. I’m tapped, lads.
Quinton Greymane: I think we’ll be alright.
The gnarled goblin shaman dashes forward, extending a palm in Fenora’s direction. A plume of noxious green gas erupts from the wrinkled hand, catching Fenora in the face, leaving the halfling coughing and gasping for air. Garl catches the shaman and the hobgoblins with his breath wepon, singing the armor of two, while the shaman and one hoblin manage to avoid the attack. A large hobgoblin, the leader it would seem, appears framed in the doorway. With a snarl, he dashes in to flank Quinton, but its attack goes wide as Quinton dodges under the sword’s swing. An attack from the other hobgoblin catches him in the side, though, and slices a narrow wound on the side of Quinton’s torso.
As Garl tangles with a pair of hobgoblins, catching some serious wounds from their sword attacks, Fenora fires an arrow at the shaman. The arrow flies true, sinking a good six inches into the goblin’s face, killing her instantly. Gishkaa kicks off a nearby broken table, sinking her psionic blade into the chest of the nearest hobgoblin, slicing up through its rib cage as she withdraws the blade The creature’s guts spill out onto the floor as it falls down dead at her feet. Civic casts a spell, sending a wave of thunderous force through the room, knocking the remaining combatants off balance. Seizing the opportunity, Garl, Fenora, and Gishkaa manage to drop more of their enemies, as Erky steps forward and releases a bolt of radiant energy bolt from his hand, slamming into the remaining hobgoblin’s head, blasting it from his shoulders. The body crumples to the floor, where it lies twitching as blood pools on the floor.
Civic: Well done, Erky!
Garl Auraspeaker: Yeah, nice shot!
Erky Timbers (turns green as he see what he did): Oh my! That’s never happened before.
Quinton Greymane: There’s a first time for everything
Erky Timbers turns and vomits.
Gishkaa Khesh’Shaarat: I think you’re safe with the Host. [in Goblin]: Since they’re a figment of your imagination…
Garl Auraspeaker: Yea, and I think the Host will forgive you for killing a few goblin scum. No offense, Gishkaa.
Gishkaa Khesh’Shaarat rolls her eyes.