Monday, June 23, 2014

Snakes. Why did it have to be snakes?


22, Fifthover, Dragon's Agitation, 190th Kings Age, Sun Descending
The group awoke the next morning and Lug announced he was thirsty, so Ren took him to find water. Ren found a pool of dirty, but drinkable, water and Lug greedily gulped it down. Ren told Lug to see if he could find any water. Lug walked a few feet away and started complaining that a stick bit him.
I hate sticks that bite.

Ren rushed over in time to see a snake slithering away from the hulking half-giant, who started complaining of dizziness.
"Rata! I need you now!" Ren shouted.
Rata rushed over and began administering aid. He checked the wound and used some herbs. Rata determined that Lug would be alright and in a few minutes, Lug was back on his feet.
After everyone was finished with their morning rituals, Rata told Yaotl of his dream. Yaotl and Rata agreed that his dream was most likely an omen of things to come, or a cry for help. Either way, they decided to pick up the pace and move quickly toward Dwarves mountain.
During their fast paced march, Ren nearly stepped on a snake that was hiding in the grass. The snake struck at Rata, but was unable to bite him. Rata psionically attacked the snake and stunned it. Ren told everyone to move away, but Lug didn't understand and stomped on the snake instead.
Ren picked up the snake, thinking it was dead. The snake struck out at Ren again, but Ren moved his head in time and pulled the snake in half. They continued marching, while Ren skinned and dressed the snake carcass.
During high sun, Aziza found a small oasis, which the group gathered around. They filled their waterskins and relaxed in the shade of the surrounding yucca trees. Rata and Yaotl knew yucca fruit was edible, so they gathered as much as they could. They enjoyed the fruit for a midday snack, but were sure to keep the seeds for cultivation later.
So good, even Sorcerer Kings can't say no.

Rata asked Ren to link their minds, so he could show Ren his dream. Ren decided to link everyone's minds, except Lug. Hedgar affirmed that the mountain in his dream was the mountain the Dwarves had been mining. Ren believes the spirit of the mountain is speaking to Rata and Aziza agreed.
Soon, it was time to leave the shade and comfort of the oasis and start marching under the blazing sun.
As they marched, Ren suggested to Rata that Rata try to train one of the Dwarves to become a druid. Rata says he has never heard of a Dwarf druid before and Hedgar started laughing.
Hours later, as the sun neared the horizon, Hedgar stood in the wagon and cried out.
"There!" He began, "There is my mountain!"
Yoatl looked to the sky, "We should camp here until tomorrow."
They set up camp. Yaotl went out to hunt and battled a giant twelve foot snake. He brought the snakes body back to camp and made snake steaks for everyone. He burned a couple of them, but he just fed those to the kanks.
While everyone else ate, Rata moved a few feet away and prayed to his spirit of the land. While he was preying, he got the impression that the land nearby was suffering, as if being tortured. Rata sprang up and ran to Yaotl.
"We should go now." Rata began, "The land is being slowly killed here."
Yaotl nodded, "Let us prepare. We'll use nap in groups, so we're refreshed."
Rata agreed and put Ren, Aziza, and Hedgar to sleep. After an hour, Rata put Yaotl, Lug, and himself to sleep. When they all awoke, they packed up everything and set off for the mountain mine.
"There's a bunch of stone houses and three mines." Hedgar explained as they walked toward the Dwarfs former home.
"You mean there's three entrances to the mine?" Ren clarified.
"No." Hedgar answered, "There's three mines. They don't join together."
Ren nodded in understanding. Upon passed some large rock formations, that protected the Dwarf settlement, the group could see the small stone houses surrounding a large body of water. Everyone starred at the pond in amazement.
"Is the water any good?" Ren asked.
Hedgar snorted, "Not a drop. It's poison and only about a foot deep in the middle."
Everyone groaned quietly in disappointment.
"Maybe you can clean it." Yaotl suggested to Rata.
Rata simply shrugged in response and moved to investigate one of the stone dwellings. Inside was a mess of furniture, as if someone ransacked the house. Yaotl moved to peer inside another dwelling, but doing so brought him precariously close to one of the mine entrances.
"Yup, that looks totally safe."

As his lantern light entered the mine tunnel, Yaotl could see Dwarf skeletons waiting inside. They saw him too and moved to attack. One moved away from the group, but the other four rushed up to Yaotl and clawed at him. Yaotl only suffered a small scratch before holding up his holy element.
"By the flame of Xiuhtecuhtli, you become as ash!" Yaotl commanded.
All, but one, of the skeletons crumbled to ash before Yaotl's elemental magic. The lone surviving skeleton moved around some rocks and attacked Aziza. Aziza deftly dodged the strike and Hedgar charged in, swinging his axe wildly. Hedgar struck nothing, but air. Aziza had her singing sticks out and made short work of the lone skeleton.
"Is everyone alright?" Yaotl asked.
Everyone nodded that they were, so Yaotl gestured for everyone to line up and be ready to enter the mine. Aziza wanted to take point, next to Yaotl, but Ren protested.
"Your fists won't do much." Aziza pointed out.
"I have a club." Ren said, pulling his club from the cart.
Aziza sighed, "Alright then."
They line up, Yaotl and Ren up front, with Aziza and Rata close behind. Lug and Hedgar were guarding the rear. They stepped into the mine tunnel.

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