The Hoard of the Dungeon Master – Part 4

After their brief rest to quickly recover from the events of the previous sessions, the party was sought out by Governor Nighthill and asked if they would, with all haste, reach the Temple of Chauntea near the town center and bring the citizens there back to the keep for safety.

More than happy to oblige, the party set out straight away, in fact, being so bold as to dash out the front doors of the keep straight past the weak siege line that was being assembled around it.

The Temple of Chauntea

Once under the cover of darkness they disappeared into the shadows and sought out the temple. It was easy to find as quite a number of enemies had assembled around it. the enemies seemed to be split among three groups. The first was attempting to batter in the front door of the temple while a second wad attempting to gain access through a back door. The third group was circling the temple to make sure no one got in or out.

Shalix Nanfoodle, a halfling of dubious skills, disappeared even further into shadows only to reappear near the back door where he took a head count of the enemy group and thought that making a stealthy approach might gain the party access through the back door.

However, other party members had different ideas and charged headlong into battle with the enemy group at the front of the temple while the circling group was nearer to the back of the temple.

As the battle raged at the front of the temple, the other enemies were still unaware of anything amiss. Dealing quickly with the front door enemies, thanks to the element of surprise, the party began to set off toward the back door.

Grimlock, a dwarven cleric, thought to attract some of that circling party toward the front of the temple in order to keep the others from being overwhelmed. The group had split up (which we all know is generally a bad idea).  Using the spell Thaumaturgy, Grimlock was able to boost the sound and reach of his voice (up to three times the volume for up to one minute). While they dealt with the remnants of the group from the front door, no one was sure if he had succeeded. Until…

As the group of adventurers at the front door was about to head for the back, they saw some stragglers heading back their way, it seems that Grimlock’s plan had worked.

Luckily, for the other group of adventurers that had headed straight for the back door, because the rest of the circling group joined in that fray and suddenly the adventurers found themselves outnumbered two-to-one. Had Grimlock’s plan failed, it would have been three-to-one and casualties would have mounted fairly quickly.

The group of adventurers gave what for to their straggling enemies and finished them off with enough time to run round the temple to the back door and assist their fellow defenders of Greenest in eliminating the remaining enemies.

After the final enemy fell the adventurers gained access to the temple, nearly scaring the citizens within half to death. A quick chat with the high priestess of the temple resulted in her convincing the other citizens that they would all be safer if they made for the keep and that they had a group of sturdy adventurers who would protect them and make sure they were seen safely into the confines of the keep.

Return to the Keep

And with little trouble that is exactly what the adventurers did, with nary a hassle they escorted some 30 citizens of Greenest through the front doors of the keep in short order.

The militia was ecstatic as many of them had friends and family in that group. However, celebrations were cut short when the circling dragon turned its ire on the keep, and its breath weapon.

Lightning streaked down from above and destroyed flesh and metal alike as it focused first on the militia upon the walls. But the adventurers in the keep’s courtyard were undaunted and soon drew the ire of the dragon down on them will full force. This resulted in Mehen getting hit head on by the dragon’s lightning breath and dropping to the ground a smoldering, unconscious heap.

That was certainly a wake up call and many of the adventurers leapt to action. Alito headed for the keep tower while fishing out some pots and pans from his/her pack. No one was exactly sure what that plan was, but several kept pace up those stairs. Others rushed to Mehen’s aid in hopes of saving him from what would probably have been certain death.

As the party scattered throughout the keep it all became suddenly quiet overhead. After several minutes of prepared waiting, it seemed that the dragon had gone.

[aesop_character img=”http://christophor-rick.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/04/half-dragon-e1428527813850.jpg” name=”Langderosa Cyanwrath” align=”right” width=”150px”]

 

Instead, from the front of the keep came a voice, loud, brash and unwavering.

Defenders of Greenest! This has been a successful night, and I am feeling generous. Do you see these four pitiful, useless prisoners? We have no need for them, so I will trade them back to you. Send out your best warrior to fight me, and you can have these four in exchange.

Looking over the meager ramparts of the keep, the militia and the adventurers could clearly see what appeared to be a reptilian humanoid, apparently the leader of the attackers.

Sergeant Markguth of the militia recognized the prisoner as family, his sister, and her children. He attempts to exit the gate and take on the scaly beast but is refrained from doing so by Escobert the Red and Governor Nighthill. The governor turns to the adventurers and asks for assistance.

[aesop_character img=”http://christophor-rick.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/03/tarbaw_nighthill_port.png” name=”Governor Tarbaw Nighthill” align=”left” width=”150px”]

My friends, you’ve demonstrated your prowess all through this frightful night. I realize this is an awful burden to ask you to bear, but any of you has a better chance to defeat that horror than my militia have.

Dorn was ready to step foot out the front gates and do battle but Alito was the final choice because she seemed to be the most powerful of all the group and was also a somewhat scaly reptilian humanoid.

Alito and Langderosa faced off in a circle of enemy troops, adventurers and militia and almost miraculously, Alito paralyzed the half-dragon and began dealing out damage. Eventually, the half-dragon fell and his troops closed in to retrieve him before further harm could be done. The adventurers had once again proven themselves strong, fearless, and willing to sacrifice life and limb for the safety of others.

There was only the faintest hint of relief as the attackers began to fade into the shadows of the night and apparently leave the village. The adventurers and the citizens of Greenest huddled within the walls of the keep waiting for the first rays of dawn’s light in hopes that it would illuminate the way to safety.

Governor Nighthill, however, was far less than ready to let the marauders simply slip into the shadows and disappear. He was ready to make them pay…

DM’s NOTE: At the end of this session the mega-group was broken up into two smaller groups in order to allow everyone a better gaming experience. Even then, both groups have swelled to eight members each, which is the cap I put on them for the sake of fun being had by all. From here on out the stories of each group will begin to diverge, GREATLY.

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