And so, into the Village we went. Full of good intent on saving humans and their ilk from the corrupted for of Tia’Vari’s dead dad. (That phrase never feels right in my mouth).
As we closed in, Villagers could be seen going about their day to day tasks, almost automation-like. We tried to speak with a number of them, which sent them walking, zombie-like, into their homes. Thinking that this was perhaps some mass charm spell, I whipped out my drums to see if I could aid them. Tia’Vari grabbed at a villager to shake them from their malaise, and looked shocked as she did so.
As if linked, all eyes in the village turned to face me! My drums were having an effect! Though the red tinge to the eyes, and the hateful gaze was a new one! As one, the villagers started to lurch towards me, tools and bread-baskets hanging by their side. My companions stepped to block one of the villagers, and she lashed out at them. Two viscous attacks, and then… She puked a purple coloured translucent worm. It flew from her mouth, its maw seeking to latch on to Arn. Arn instead sliced it from the air, and the battle was on.
The villagers attacked in waves, pouring forth with a vigour and fury that was far beyond that which they held in life. Wound after wound was inflicted upon them, and they just kept coming. I threw a lightning bolt, leaving three of them charred, but still standing. It had the unfortunate effect of setting fire to the thatch on two houses.
From behind the villagers, a dark mass of shadows appeared. The occasional claw, tail or wing protruding, and as it closed, we could make out the shape of a dragon. Somewhat smaller than I’d expected, perhaps the size of a large Elk. It started to taunt Tia’Vari, and confirmed my earlier suspicion that this was, in fact, Tia’s dead dad. I sharn’t tell her that I was unsure beforehand. Let her believe I always knew this to be that case!
He told her to return that which was rightfully his. His soul gem. Whilst I’m sure it used to be his, I’m not convinced he was really due its return. He’d died after all!
Grum leapt into the air, spreading her wings. She flew directly at the shadowy beast, and the rest of us fought on against the undead villagers. Echo took an almighty blow, knocking him to the ground. Fortunately, father Oarath was on hand to get him back into the fray. I took a similar blow, and he helped me up also.
Between us all, we managed to dispatch the closer undead, and everyone started attacking Tia’s Dad. Tia unleashed a massive beam of energy, which tethered her to him, pumping wave after wave of damage at him. There was a crack of energy, and where before the small dragon had been, now an ancient being stood towering over us all. Using the term gargantuan would be an understatement. It beat its wings once, twice, and it was airborne.
In a moment of panic, I didn’t know what to do. It was getting away, and that was bad, but at the same time, it wasn’t going to kill us. I ran forward, grabbing Arn’s arm, and pulling him through a dimension door onto the back of the dragon. I guess I didn’t pick my moment well, because it beat its wings again, and Arn tumbled from its back. It was all I could do to cast featherfall on him, saving him from getting hurt.
Daddy dearest then unleashed a breath of cold icy air, laying waste to everyone in his path (well, except Tia’Vari, who was suspectly free of ice crystals!). Laying around her though was the remains of a troop of knights that had apparently arrived mid fight, and just charged to attack. Now they were a bit dead.
So that’s how I ended up riding the reanimated evil form of Tia’Vari’s dad. Being carried off into the sunset, to me eventual demise.
Well, that would have happened, except I am Tak, and I do stupid things all the time. I cast Polymorph, and turned myself into a giant Lizard. The biggest I could think of, the mighty Tyrannosaurus Rex.
My plan was sound. Be a big lizard; wrestle Daddy dearest to the ground. Bite him a few times, and hope everyone else can get here. In actuality, I turned into a big lizard, flailed around with my tiny lizard arms, fell off the dragon and hit the floor. The beast flew off, and then I was left looking magnificent on the ground. (Have you ever tried to stand up without using your tiny tiny arms?)
Tia’Vari revived Oarath, who set to word reviving the knights. Eventually, they managed to get all bar two back from deaths door, and I decided that being a giant lizard was poor taste. I popped back to my normal beautiful self, and strode forward to talk with the captain, one Sir Elmkin, leader of this small band. I explained the situation leading up to the attack, and Oarath backed me up on it. I also asked if we could speak to Dovin Treeguard, which caught him off track. Eventually, I must have persuaded him that we were heroes, because they formed up around us, to provide us with a guard of honour, to lead us back to their chapterhouse.
All in all, not a bad days work!