In an attempt to end the threat posed by the Cult of the Dragon, my companions and I have found ourselves deposited upon an island made of clouds that floats high in the sky above the savage frontier. Over the course of exploring the island we have learned that the place was originally home to a pair of cloud giant brothers. We have also discerned, through conversations with one of the brothers, a massive giant by the name of Faerhog, that an important cultist named Rezmir the Black has taken up residence in the giants’ castle at the centre of the island. The cultists are now using the island as a sort of flying fortress. Faerhog claims to be unhappy with the situation and has told us that Rezmir has garnered the loyalty of his elder brother through dark sorcery. We have agreed to help him raid the castle and free his brother from her spells. In return we expect that he will aid us in battle against our enemies.
The castle is surrounded by a moat of empty air making it difficult to reach the walls. Today Faerhog assisted us by assuming a gaseous form and then flying down to a cave opening carved into the base of the massive chunk of flying ice that supports the castle. According to Faerhog, Rezmir’s black dragon ally Glazhael has carved a series of tunnels into the ice below the castle, and uses them as its lair. He threw a rope to us that we secured to a nearby tree. We then slid down the rope and into the ice cave.
Inside the ice caves we found sure signs of dragon habitation in the form of claw marks and acid pools. In fact several of us nearly feel into one such pool of acid. I came the closest to such a horrible fate, but avoided it by managing to dig my dagger into the icy slope of the chute at the last instant. Sadly I lost Skullbreaker- my trusty flail to the acid bath.
Belamir and Pug did some scouting up the tunnel that exited the cave. Belamir used his magic to make us all more stealthy. He assumed the form of great white bear and Pug rode on his back. I suppose that since the half orc can’t be captain of a ship it makes him feel good to be the captain of a bear. The pair of them soon came upon a large cave dominated by a lake of noxious acid. Hanging from the ceiling like a bat they spotted a black dragon – Rezmir’s ally Glazhael the Cloudchaser and sometimes steed. They were able to sneak back down the tunnel to report to us without alerting the wyrm. We formulated a simple plan. Soveliss would ride Belamir stealthily back to the entrance to the dragon’s cave, then he would fireball the thing and lure it back into the twenty foot wide tunnel. Here Pug, Ildara, Belamir and myself would form a front line. Faerhog would stand behind us and use his great size and reach to fight overtop of us, while Varis and Soveliss would take up rear positions and blast it with their magics. It was a simple strategy, but one that we thought would be effective.
The beginnings of our plan went well enough. The warlock’s fireball got the dragon’s attention. It flew into the tunnel full of arrogance and rage. As expected, it unleashed its acid breath. Varis had generously protected me from acid with a spell, which was most fortunate since I was directly in the path of the acid- probably because I had started taunting the beast to help ensure it would come to us. I tried to get my shield up to protect myself, but failed and I bore its breath weapon full on. Thank the gods for Varis’s spell. The acid still burned though, and it also got Faerhog and Varis. Faerhog had consumed my potion of acid resistance, so he too was protected. Sadly Varis was not, for he had chosen to protect me instead. The blast nearly killed him, causing him to collapse into unconsciousness from the terrible burns.
The dragon then landed before us, and I lashed out with my shortsword, failing to do it harm. I then decided that for such a deadly foe I would need to switch to my greatsword and forego the defensive benefits offered by my shield. I drew the magical blade and began hacking at the beast. I carved several deep cuts into the thing, but it was too tough to easily fell. I had its full attention however, and it came at me with claws and bite, slashing and tearing. I took more wounds, but Tempus gave me the strength to withstand them. Then Faerhog betrayed us. The treacherous giant decided to step over us and leave us to the dragon. He pushed the beast aside and fled through its lair, abandoning us to our fates. Ildaera, Pug and Belamir knew that we must either kill the horror or die, so they attacked it with all their fury inflicting more wounds. Soveliss aided us by casting an ice storm behind it, and Varis continued to be unconscious.
Suddenly, dragon fear assailed me, and I could not withstand it. It was all I could do to hold onto my blade and keep fighting, but my confidence was shattered. All seemed hopeless. We were but tiny mortals and we were facing a creature of legend. I could no longer pierce its scales, and all seemed lost. The last thing I remember was its wicked smile, as it watched me tremble with terror. It came at me again, and then all went black.
When I awoke, Varis was standing over me. He was still horribly burned from acid, but he lived. The rest of my companions did as well, and the dragon Glazhael was dead. I soon learned that it was Pug who landed the killing blow on the beast- curse the pirate for taking that glory from me. Still, I contributed much to its demise, and drew most of its wrath away from my allies.
After the fight we rested in the tunnel and attempted to tend to our wounds, but the cold was intense, and we realized that we needed to start moving or we would freeze to death. We saw little choice but to press deeper. Eventually we found a wide, spiral stair case that took us upward. We encountered a pair of well dressed ogre servants on the stairs that we attacked with great ferocity and quickly dispatched. Not long afterwards, the stairs came to an end, opening up to a large courtyard where Belamir spotted ogres training for battle. I was shocked that the cult had managed to instill such discipline in the notoriously stupid and uncooperative creatures. A regimented force of well equipped ogres was a terrifying thought, one that gave me yet another reason to take put the cult leadership to the sword. We briefly contemplated dropping a cloud of arcane mist on the ogres and attacking them, but I convinced my companions that we should not risk unnecessary battle, and that we should focus on finding Rezmir. They agreed, and we will continue to search this place until we find our enemy.
I am still wounded and the road ahead looks filled with peril. I expect that I may soon go to the halls of Tempus. I do not fear death. I only pray that when I do die it will be in glorious battle against our enemies, for that is the only sure path to Tempus’s hall.