z_The Zenith

Eleniel Rescue

The party had just returned from rescuing Thania, daughter of Nobel woman Burha. It earned the party a favor, but no monetary or physical reward. The dwarfs were eager to visit Lady K because the offer of $500,000 for an artifact seemed too good to pass up… even if there was a chance she would try to kill them.

Kyra and Gemma stayed in Queen Ramina’s castle. Gemma thought it was so nice that this was the way Elm’ril treated guests and didn’t pick up on the favor granted to her on behalf of Kyra.

This particular night was different also because the queen asked a Kyra to look into the disappearance of Eleniel and her tutor, Alador. The hand of the tutor had showed up with a ransom note asking for $5,000,000 to be delivered in a week.

In the morning, Kyra wrangled up Tathel and the dwarfs to go on the queen’s quest. Before leaving, the party visited the mage Livia in the Didela tower to ask about the 150 lb. rock Morel brought back from the meteor crater. Livia wasn’t sure what to make of the strange quality it had to make using magic harder, but she promised to study it and let the party know if she was interested in buying the metal.

Kyra secretly used the orb of questions to narrow the search for Eleniel. It was necessary to travel by giant dwarf East to Silverwood. Tathel was then able to use Seeker then Trace to locate a blacksmith shop in the middle of town where Eleniel was being held.

The dwarfs were ready to break down the door and route the whole lot despite the risk of the authorities getting involved. Cooler heads prevailed and the plan was made to teleport from the back ally down into the dungeon beneath the shop. “Red” used Might to boost the strength of Gemma and Kyra, so each could carry a dwarf along for the ride.

Eleniel and her tutor were chained to anvils on one side of the room. It will filled with 11 henchmen wearing leather armor and carrying katanas. Gemma darted across the room seeming intent on causing chaos for a table of men playing cards and Morel followed protectively. “Red” immediately put his ax to work trying to free Eleniel assuming the plan was to grab her and escape quickly. Kyra and Tathel also set to the task of killing everyone.

There were surprisingly few henchmen dead by the time most of them recovered from their mental stun. Morel took a forward position drawing most of the attacks allowing the magic users and Kyra to freely attack. Then a few henchmen broke away from the pack and charged Tathel and Gemma. No blows landed, but Blink was used liberally.

When the tide turned, the henchmen decided the best idea would be to kill the prisoners. Tathel grabbed Eleniel and teleported all the way back to the Didela tower in Miresus. Gemma did the same thing with the tutor.

Finally, the battle was drawing to an end. One of the henchmen made a break for the exit and no one could stop him. The desire to pursue him was strong, but there were too many active enemies and his head start guaranteed he would get away. Kyra made a point to go around and finish off henchmen that were merely disabled or unconscious.

Tathel received a hostile reception in the Didela tower. He had a beaten and unconscious princess in tow and the guards could only assume he was the perpetrator. Eventually, all that got sorted out and help got sent back to the blacksmith dungeon.

Master Glex’s agents arrived and sanitized the area. Bodies were disappeared and evidence that the party was there was destroyed. If the lone henchman hadn’t escaped, no outsider would know what happened. Finally, a gate was created and the party was sent to a room inside the Miresus, Didela tower.

The party was sequestered for days. Tathel prayed and the dwarfs brawled to pass the time. Finally, everyone was brought before the queen and commended for their efforts. There was a promise of reward, but no reward was given. She told them about agents within Khatovar trying to start a full scale war with Elm’ril. This was on the eve of negotiations to establish permanent gates connecting main trade hubs between countries. Kyra was scolded for killing every unconscious and crippled enemy. The queen wanted to have the option to question them next time.

For the dwarfs, the good news was that Livia had completed her study of the meteor and had come back with an offer of $4500. That was $1125 a piece for Tathel, Kyra, Morel and “Red”. (Gemma hadn’t joined them when the rock was recovered.) There would also be money for the 10 leather armor and 10 katanas taken from the fallen henchmen before the bodies were disposed of.

(Left off the evening of August 25th, 951)

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Meet Gemma Rhyland

August 18th, 951 to August 21st, 951

Kyra looked over the common area of The Daring Goblin Tavern and Inn. The place looked like it
had seen lots of use. The floor was waxed, but dark with age and dirt deep in the wood grain.
Everything was in good repair, but it was obvious that most of the furniture had been repaired.
From the look of the patronage, fights were frequent. It wouldn’t be wise to drink too heavily.
Kyra imagined several of these people would be happy to relieve her of her purse.

All the same, this was the best Morvale had to offer traveling adventurers like herself. The
party had wandered into more than 1 nameless place only to be rejected and finally sent here.
Glowing reviews of “not too many murders” and “thieves there usually leave a calling card”
didn’t inspire Kyra to want a private room. Instead, the party all squeezed into a 3 bed room.
“Red” was the odd man out. He planned to stay up all night praying after Tathel offered to
cast Vigil on him.

Before retiring for the evening, the “Red” treated the party to one of the house specialty brews,
rumored to be made with real Sphinx Tears. It was glittery gold with deep metallic swirls.
The clear glass caught the light and made the drink seem an odd piece of beauty in this otherwise
lackluster place.

It wasn’t until the dwarfs had nearly finished the obviously alcoholic Sphinx Tears that either
Tathel or Kyra braved a sip. It was surprisingly refreshing and had the taste of grapes. Despite
being very nervous about the clientele, Kyra decided to go alone looking to make friends.
Several people were playing card games. One group was not playing for money, so Kyra asked to
sit in on a few hands.

The game was 3 Dragon Ante and it was strange no money was involved. Kyra learned that these
were local tradesmen and merchants from the area. Their rough exteriors belied a harsh lives,
but not the hard lives of well-traveled men. Oddly enough, the men took little interest in
the comings or goings of the strange elven archer sitting at their table. Not even Kyra’s
elven beauty sparked any interest in the men.

The next day, Tathel made use of Thania’s hair ribbon and cast magic to find her. Within
100 miles now, the party boarded big dwarf, Morel, after they got far enough outside of town to
avoid crushing anything important. Within an hour, Tathel called Morel to a stop claiming Thania
was within a mile or 2.

The trail finally stopped when Tathel told the group she was straight down 100 feet. There must
be an entrance to an underground complex somewhere close. Underground often means dark, so Kyra
prepped a pebble to act as a torch before starting her search. She knew that Morel would likely
go charging in and she’d not get a chance to recover from her exertions if she waited until later.

When the cave entrance was found, Morel was happy to lead the way using his head lamp. Tathel
was in the rear and held the other light source. It wasn’t long before the cave narrowed and
dead ended into a steel door with no handle or key hole. Morel gave it a push, but it didn’t
move.

Kyra waved off Morel as he prepared to bash the door down. She didn’t want anyone getting
advanced warning. After using Mage Sight to check for magical traps, she unsuccessfully tried
using magic to unlock the door. Tathel was next to attempt bypassing the barrier. He blinked
to the other side of the door and discovered it was barred with a heavy piece of steel. It was
more than he could manage, so he used Levitate to lighten the bar and move it so the door could
open.

After all the magical exertions, Kyra and Tathel needed a rest. Fortunately, the passage on
beyond the door was lighted and enemies would have a difficult time surprising the party.
Morel wondered why clerics and mages were always so tired, but resisted his urge to simply
continue on without them. As they rested in silence, “Red” heard the sound of something solid
scraping across stone. He thought his ears were playing tricks on him when he gestured to his
party to listen and only got confused looks.

Tathel prepped Kyra with Haste before ending the break. He wanted to make sure she could get
into position easily. After resting for 10-15 minutes, the group was finally ready to act.
And so they moved, Morel in front, then “Red”, Kyra and Tathel.

Morel rounded a corner and across a wide room found himself with the choice of the door on the
left or the door on the right. That and which of 3 patrolling skeletons to shatter first.
Surprisingly attentive, the skeletons wasted no time moving towards the well armored dwarf.
Morel was happy the animated bones close enough to attack so quickly.

“Red” soon found himself face to face with a black skeleton. It glistened, wet with some
something dark oozing from somewhere. Unsure of how strong this creature was, “Red” dropped
his ax and grabbed his silver symbol of Kord. True Faith caused not just the black skeleton
but all the skeletons to flee. This seemed to cause trouble for Tathel who suddenly was using
magic to target an enemy that was much further away.

Morel and Kyra had no trouble cleaning up the skeletons. Tathel choose the door on the right
claiming it was where the party would claim Thania. Kyra once again prepped Mage Sight and
checked the doors for magical traps.

Through the door was a long hall. On either side were iron bars forming jail cells. On the
wall of each cell were manacles that Kyra indicated were magical. As the party walked along,
they saw a variety of weak, old or dying people locked away. From the smell, some of prisoners
were already dead. Layers of dirt and excrement made it hard to tell the living from the dead.
Morel tried to engage the first prisoners in conversation, but all were either unconscious or
awake with dead eyes.

Morel was about to give up hope on these prisoners when he came to a cell half way down the
corridor. There stood a woman relatively clean with bright coherent eyes. She was seemed to
light up as more and more of the party came into view. It was almost like she was receiving
guests to a party.

Morel told the woman they were looking for a woman name Thania. This wasn’t her, but she was
more than happy to let them know a necromancer and vampire had just taken her to the far end of
the corridor. The woman claimed she couldn’t help as a guide, but the party decided she might
prove helpful if she were released. Morel wanted to try using brute force to open the cell and
remove the manacles, but Kyra was there opening the locks with magic.

Kyra wanted to rest after this, but Morel was impatient so “Red” offered some of his ample
supply to get the party moving again. As impatient as he was, Morel looked back and let
everyone know it was their last chance to do any magic before he opened the door and
potentially started a battle.

It was good intuition because the door opened to what looked like a stone altar supporting an
unconscious woman. A pale man in robes appeared to be chanting while an even paler man with
fangs looked on. Around the room were several skeletons along with Morel assumed were vampire
spawn. In the back of the room was a wispy spirit presumably waiting to be welcomed into its
new corporeal form currently lying on the altar.

Before Morel could even step into the room, skeletons swarmed him responding with
lightning fast reflexes to the door being opened. This seemed to be even before the necromancer
shouted an order in undercommon, “Kill Them”.

The yet to be named girl didn’t hesitate, she slipped past “Red” and in front of Morel. While
the skeleton’s rusty blade was still being deflected by Morel’s ax, she hit the first skeleton
with a powerful fireball. It didn’t kill the creature, but Morel was able to side step her to
easily finish the job.

Tathel launched a fireball at a more distant opponent and missed horribly nearly singeing the
woman on the altar. Kyra stepped into the room and launched an arrow at the now fleeing
necromancer hitting him in the leg. The man dropped and screamed, “protect me,” in undercommon
followed by, “please, don’t kill me!,” in common.

Morel moved to intercept the vampire and all but one skeleton chased him. He took a few random
swings at enemies as he covered the distance. Unfortunately, the vampire made it through the
door long before Morel could cover the distance. One of the vampire spawn had turned to mist
and was drifting towards the door.

With several skeletons and vampire spawn still in play, she covers the distance to the fallen
necromancer. As she does, Morel catches her intention and yells “let the necromancer speak!”
Kyra ignores him and shoots him in the head at point blank. Temper flaring, Morel steps
between Kyra and the necromancer telling her that he wants to talk to the man. Morel fumed
that followers of Corellon had no honor and would attack an enemy who has yielded. Was she
really so afraid of such a weak enemy that she had to kill him immediately?

What made him angrier is the idea Kyra completely ignored him. Didn’t she realize the
tenants of his faith commanded him to defend the weak against the strong? When he spoke up
for the necromancer, he was essentially placing him under his protection. It was all he could
do to keep his temper under control.

Kyra left the necromancer and shot her bow at the last remaining vampire spawn who was fleeing
the room. Morel came over and took a few swings at it as it left, but Kyra chased it all the
way down the hall and back into the main area the party saw when they first entered. Tathel
ran after her, but gave up the chase to explore a locked room that belonged to the necromancer.

In the meantime, the new girl had given energy to the woman on the altar and brought her to
consciousness. The dwarfs took up defensive positions around the wispy spirit who still
lingered in the room. It hadn’t shown any aggressive actions, but there was no sense in taking
chances. “Red” was hoping to engage the thing in conversation to discover what he might from
it, but it seemed to ignore him and gradually disappeared into the floor.

The dwarfs decided to question the necromancer. With the spirit dissipated, the altar room was
probably safe enough to leave the recently saved prisoners. Morel carried the necromancer to
the cell block with the idea of locking him up. Later, he’d learn that Tathel had taken the
keys from the necromancer and it wouldn’t be possible. All the same, “Red” revived the weakened
man with healing while Morel stood at the ready for any false move from the submitted enemy.

After several minutes of questioning, the dwarfs learned that the necromancer, Xander, had
been acquired by a vampire spawn and brought here. When the vampire learned of his skill in
magic, he was commanded to practice necromancy and eventually create skeleton minions to serve
the vampires. He was really just an unwilling participant in all the proceedings.

The dwarfs believed the story and offered him protection from both the vampires and their elf
traveling companions. When Tathel came around, he wondered what the dwarfs were going to do
with Xander. They told him he was coerced against his will and innocent, so he would be
returned to his home country of Khatovar to start a new life away from the influence of the
vampires.

Tathel was livid with the idea. Didn’t the dwarfs know that one of the main tenants of
Corellon was to destroy abominations against life or nature. This man created those
abominations! It made no difference to him why he acted that way, only that he did it.
Of course, Tathel couldn’t force his will on the dwarfs. They only saw an enemy yielded in
submission.

Was it time to depart the company of these heathen dwarfs? Could he assassinate Xander
while he was being protected by the dwarfs? He needed guidance from Corellon about how to
handle the problem. He needed time to pray. And pray he did until 2 hours later he got word
that everyone had been freed and was on the surface ready to leave for Morvale.

As Morel prepared to grow to enormous size once again, Tathel learned that Kyra had found $500
in silver and a couple cursed rings in Xander’s room along with several books of necromancy
spells. The books had been burned by their new friend, Gemma, using magic when Kyra expressed
hatred for the subject. At least, Gemma was sympathetic to Corellon.

As Gemma came to the surface, she seemed confused by the dwarfs as they watched over Xander.
She asked what they planned to do with him. “Red” told her that he was coerced against his
will by the vampire and would be returning to Khatovar to start a new life.

Gemma became even more confused. She told the dwarfs that he was actually the one giving
orders to the vampire and was the one in charge. Thania collaborated the story. Feeling
foolish, Morel and “Red” formally released their protection from Xander. Wasting no time, Kyra
quickly shot him in the head point blank and Thania drove a sword into him finishing the matter.

Morel carried the party and former prisoners back to Morvale. There, passage was arranged for
each person of Pelevion to return back to their home. The next day, big dwarf took the
survivors from Khatovar back to Gotham. From there, Tathel and Thania teleported to the Didela
tower in Miresus. Kyra arranged for Morel, “Red” and Gemma to travel to Miresus using the druid
trees.

Once in Miresus, Morel asks Kyra to come along to the armorer. He wants her to use Mage Sight
to see how his star metal affects magic. Each dwarf wears several pieces of magical armor and
the artifact, Orchid Malevolence, is magical of course. Kyra notices all items glow brightly
with Mage Sight. When Morel retrieved the star metal, only a faint glow remained on all items
except Orchid Malevolence, which seemed to glow just as strong as before.

Deciding this might be useful to a magic user, Morel tells the blacksmith there might be a
better use for the star metal and to wait to make anything. The dwarfs, Gemma and Kyra head
to the Didela tower and meet Kyra’s friend Gina. She helps the group make an appointment to
meet with Master Livia the next day at 9 a.m. Satisfied that the wheels are in motion, the
party decides to head across town to rejoin Tathel at the estate of Nobelwoman Burha. She
will likely have something good for the heroes that rescued her daughter, Thania.

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Big Dwarf

August 10, 951 to August 18, 951

Tathel was at the rendezvous waiting to rejoin his traveling companions after 4 months separation. Immediately after the tournament, the Glanent brothers had commissioned the strongest Dwarven armor and bought new armor to be enchanted. Their money mostly spent, they were ready to leave Gotham and go straight way to Ugini to inquire about working for Lady K. Tathel simply wanted to find some place that would have a size 30 power stone. Veros might be a good place to visit. Kyra just wanted to go back to Miresus.

Plans of exploring new places were put on when Kyra commissioned her armor to be magically hardened. Buying new armor to wear during the 4 months needed for the enchantment was out of the question for Kyra. Her signature silenced green mail was very fine quality, but Tathel began to wonder if his love interest was a bit of a prima donna. He silently wondered if anyone short of royalty could afford her proclivities.

Morel and “Red” were first to arrive. The brothers were playfully trading jabs and throwing blocks occasionally as they walked. The 4 months the pair had spent at the fight club had honed their skills. The battle with Merak had shown the brothers how weak their unarmed style of combat was. It was a disgrace for followers of Kord to be poor at brawling and a new resolution to brawl daily was part of the Glanent’s daily routine.

Tathel wondered what kept the dwarfs around for so long. Didn’t they want to go to Pelevion? The last thing he heard “Red” say was that he wanted to pray to get ready to fight dragons. Lady K did mention some of the artifacts were guarded by dragons. Maybe, there were still plans to go East after all.

Off in the distance, Kyra could be seen walking up the path. Her tournament battle with Torver showed she was vulnerable to the darkness spell. Feeling weak grated against her warrior spirit and she spent the bulk of her 4 months working on blind fighting with her bow. Tathel was sure there was a magical solution that would be better, but then again he thought every problem was best solved with magic.

He had spent the majority of his time praying for new spells. 4 months of all night vigils had paid off and Corellon had blessed him with some great spells including Explosive Fireball, Seeker, Trace and Mental Stun. He had the idea of helping the dwarfs find Vaevictus Asmadi before it became an issue. Tathel had never heard of a druid taking vengeance, but he’d prefer not to risk it as long as he was traveling with the Glanents.

Morel was excited to share all the rumors he learned while touring all the local taverns. There was talk of a fallen meteor in Waylawold, an old adventurer lamenting about a treasure he almost recovered and a mom seeking someone to check on her lost daughter. “Red” cockily stated, “ all these are just a short walk for a dwarf. Let me show you how traveling should be done. Morel change into your travel clothes.”

Tathel started skeptical, but became positively annoyed as Morel started stripping down out of his armor. Now what? Then he noticed the embroidered logo on Morel’s shirt. Glanent Brothers Courier and Passenger Service.

“Is this some kind of joke!? You haven’t even got a wagon. How do you expect to move passengers?”

“Have you got the courage to ride a dwarf,” exclaimed “Red” and he began casting a spell.

Suddenly, there was a great sound of earth being compacted and darkness. Then the darkness shifted and it became obvious that the darkness was a shadow cast from the largest dwarf anyone had ever seen. Towering almost 70 feet above his companions, Morel leaned over and chuckled at his tiny friends. The deep timbre of his voice vibrated in Tathel’s chest. He sincerely hoped a lengthy conversation wasn’t necessary.

The mighty Morel kneeled down and stretched out his hand for his party. For once speechless, the shocked elves were a little reluctant to climb onto Morel’s huge palm. When everyone was in hand, Morel brought them up to a pocket tailored to comfortably house his friends. The bottom of the pocket had a flat surface and there were holes where a person could look out while they traveled.

In spite of his size, Morel was able to avoid the major vegetation so dear to the elves. As he casually walked along faster than a mage could fly, he left depressions along either side of the road. Tathel thought to himself that these would likely collect water and make mosquitoes along the road unbearable for the average traveler. In soft spots, the footprints were deep enough for a bandit to conceal himself. This was the unfortunate trade off for lots of travel time.

Within hours, not days, the party found a blackened crater in the Waylawold Plain. That’s where the star must have fallen. Morel allowed the party to disembark and then “Red” released the Enlarge Other spell. It was certain that a 70 foot dwarf would intimidate any enemy, but Morel preferred to use an ax instead of the sole of his shoe in combat. After donning Morel donned his armor, the party took the short 100 yard walk to the crater.

The hole left by the star was large and burnt. The star itself was perhaps 3 foot across, but it looked as if the earth exploded forcefully in all directions. Oddly enough, there were corpses scattered around the crater. Morel took note of the elves reaction of fear and watched them keep back while he strode forward to examine the bodies.

“Sword wounds!”

Relieved that the crater wasn’t somehow poisonous, the elves came to join him. Whoever had killed these people must have gotten what they wanted and left. The real question is what could have fallen from the sky that people were willing to kill for? It certainly wasn’t the metallic rock that was still here.

After “Red” looted bodies for silver and valuables, Kyra was moved by compassion for the fallen people. They were elves and deserved to be returned to their families for their rest in eternity. Morel grumbled to himself. Kyra is the one who wants to return the bodies, but he’s the one who ultimately has to carry them.

Morel decided that since no one else wanted to take the star rock, he wanted it. Kyra warned him that it might not be safe and began casting a spell. Morel grew more frustrated when Kyra announced she was blind. It was a very rare occasion for a dwarf to cut off his own arm with an ax. Why did mages struggle so much with magic?

Kyra quickly concluded that the star rock was the source of the problem. Morel thought this unlikely because “Red” didn’t have any trouble restoring him back to giant size. There wasn’t any indication it was more taxing on him in any way. After his friends were safely pocketed away, Morel grabbed the star rock and the slain bodies and tucked them away for safe travel.

As the party made their return journey, “Red” began to wonder if there was something unique about the star metal Morel was carrying. Maybe, the qualities weren’t strong enough to affect everyone, but it might have some application in the right circumstance. Silently, he chuckled to himself. When had any of the magical enemies fighting against his party ever been anything other than overwhelmingly strong.

“Red” thought he heard a little panic in Kyra’s voice as Miresus came within sight. Evidently, she wasn’t entirely confident of the reception the party would get riding into town on a 70 foot dwarf. Giants are only 20 feet tall and even the largest one of those would seem tiny compared to Morel. At her request, the dwarf express service stopped a couple miles outside of town.

When the party had disembarked from Morel’s passenger pocket, Morel took the star metal out of his pocket. Then his hand went in a pocket and came out with the arms, legs and heads of corpses hanging loosely from between fingers. When Morel unceremoniously deposited the bodies in a heap beside the road, “Red” hoped no one was looking. It just seemed like bad advertising for Glanent Brothers Courier and Passenger Service.

The old human adventurer had promised a great treasure. All the party needed to do was defeat an evil sorcerer who had enslaved a manticore in a cave a few days walk from Miresus. Certainly the place was remote enough to warrant a look, the part just wasn’t overly optimistic that much of anything would be there.

The cave was pitch black and Morel turned on his head lamp while Kyra cast Continual Light on “Red’s” helmet. Kyra tried to get Morel to stop and wait for her to rest a while, but with the cave so close, he simply charged on in. “Red” gave Kyra some of his ample energy and everyone followed the now too far ahead Morel.

The deeper into the earth the cave went, it started to change direction. It angled left then right and came to a blind corner. Rather than wait for backup, Morel boldly walked around the corner confident he could take both a sorcerer and manticore by himself. This was just was well because no sooner out of sight that he was jumped by a pack of no less than a half dozen wolves.

Morel was quite effective at deflecting the wolf attacks. “Red” was even able to join him before the first one landed a bite that didn’t make it past his stout leg armor. 2 of the wolfs broke off from the main pack to discourage “Red” from going further into the cave, but 1 slipped past and decided to go for the archer who was starting to make herself a nuisance.

The wolf pounced on Kyra knocking her to the ground and making an impossibly strong bite through her freshly hardened elven hauberk. Despite the brutality of the attack, Kyra didn’t seem to be the main focus for the wolf. He left her wounded and bleeding and turned his attack towards Tathel. As the wolf bore down on Tathel, Kyra put her hand to her wound and it came back red.

“Werewolves!,” came Morel’s shout from around the corner. He must have killed one. Kyra’s mind raced. Maybe, she was left alone because she was infected and soon to join their number. Through the haze, she managed to get up and ready her bow. There was still a battle raging and a supernatural infection would simply have to wait.

When Kyra looked up, Tathel was standing in front of a stationary wolf. It seemed dazed and unable to attack. This must be the result of one of the many new spells he had been praying for. Kyra poured arrow after arrow into the helpless beast seemingly having no effect. It must have something to do with it being a werewolf.

Around the corner, the conflict seemed to be dying down. It looked like a 3 legged wolf was attempting to get away from Morel as he chased it around the corner. Then Morel chopped off the other leg and it reverted back to it’s elf form. Morel walked over to the beast and grabbed a great sapphire pendent from the mouth of the legless elf. This is the payment due to the adventurer for sharing the location of the treasure.

And quite a treasure it was. $14,852 in silver plus $2160 in gold. There were a few short swords with false magical auras, but otherwise nothing of value there. Only fallen elves with missing limbs were scattered about the cave. Kyra was not as eager to bring these corpses back to Miresus. Perhaps, she was distracted with her werewolf bite.

Shortly after the loot was collected, Kyra told the others she needed to go visit her aunt Binakwe and would meet them back in town. Then she teleported away. Tathel, “Red” and Morel spent 3 days walking and expected to see Kyra waiting for them at the gate, but she wasn’t there. Rather than panic, the party simply sold the short swords and in general went about their normal business assuming Kyra would eventually turn up.

It’s just as well that they did. Kyra was hopelessly lost. It was a couple days walk from the cave to the woods of her druid aunt, but this was already day 3 trying to teleport. The problem was she needed to draw energy from her powerstone to compensate for the distance. She didn’t want to drain it too much, so she’d teleport in the morning and then hopefully pick the right direction and start walking. This method had not been very effective. Thankfully, she managed a relatively successful teleport on day 4.

Binakwe was happy to see Kyra. It didn’t seem to matter that Kyra was there asking a favor. The good news for Kyra was that she wasn’t infected with lycanthropy. She wouldn’t be changing shape under a full moon. With that peace of mind, Kyra made use of Binakwe’s tree transport system to go a couple miles outside of Miresus. She would rejoin her party soon.

Morel was at the dwarven armorer with his brother. He wasn’t sure what was so great about this star metal, but he was all for it if it caused trouble for mages. In general, he like clerics, but mages always seemed to be causing him trouble. It had been troublesome to get his rock back. Thanks to Kyra, the authorities had seized it related to the investigation of the bodies recovered from the meteor crater. It was a wonder the party wasn’t also held for extended questioning. Morel wondered to himself whether he would have permitted puny elves to put him in a cage.

All the same, his metal was released from evidence and now he intended to have it made into something he could use. The black smith had never seen any metal like this before. He wasn’t sure how hard it would be to work with, but agreed to make elven mail coif and throwing axes for Morel. The hope was to restrict magical enemies with his new equipment.

Shortly afterward, the party went to talk to a noblewoman named Burha. She was hoping someone would help her discover the fate of her adventurer daughter, Thania, who had left town several months ago for parts unknown. Morel thought this an indirect quest the dwarfs wouldn’t be much interested in, but Kyra and Tathel were masters of information and he was sure the lost adventurer would be found in no time.

Burha had no useful information, but was able to provide Tathel with a hair ribbon that belonged to her daughter. Somehow personal items helped magic users find the owner. The odd thing was that it was Kyra who determined the party should start looking in Pelevion near Morvale. She always seemed to know things that she shouldn’t have any reason to know. There must be something special about her. Based solely on faith in Kyra, the party boarded the pocket of the giant Morel and left for Morvale.

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Awards Ceremony

Morel stood in a dark alley with his friends. He was watching carefully what was going on at the banquet hall where he was hoping to collect his prize money. The same banquet hall where Kyra had told him there was a trap laid. It was confirmation of Jeska’s prediction that only bad things would come from the tournament. The bold dwarf cared little that there would be someone trying to kill him. It was Lady K that shoud be worried if she failed to hold up her end of the bargain.

As the other adventurers began to assemble and form a line, Morel let his mind drift back to less than a day ago when both his arms were useless. Even his brother was crippled in one arm. It was a fortunate thing that Kyra’s friend, Chrysavet, was such a powerful druid. He had offered the dwarfs a deal. Deliver a message to the illusive Vaevictus Asmadi and regain use of their limbs. Finding someone who could change his appearance was not something Morel was looking forward to, but the deal was struck. Morel lamented to himself. Why couldn’t he simply ask to have a dragon slain?

Finally the doors opened to the dining hall and people started going in. The party would wait to be the last ones through the doors. Hopefully, the others would fall victim to whatever evil awaited first and give the party time to react. Morel steeled himself with the knowledge that it wasn’t just him that had money coming.

Everyone had done well in the tournament. Each party member was entitle to their share of the $15,000 they won as Team 11. Red was ineffective against Merak. His strategy was to let gravity do damage to Merak assuming damage was reflected back at the attacker. It wasn’t. Red still shared the pain, but didn’t have the heart to yield when he saw Merak’s body become disfigured and mangled from the impact with the ground. Losing was still worth $5,000.

Morel didn’t fault his brother for his defeat. Instead, he learned from it and didn’t do any direct damage to Merak when he met him in the finals. He didn’t try to lop off a leg like he did with Torver. Instead, he used superior strength to pin and strangle the oddly resilient man. It worked in a way. Merak did lose consciousness and was neutralized, but Morel also passed out just as he was about to claim his victory. Draw. It was still enough to raise his prize winnings from $9,000 to $12,000. Next time he’d find a way to win.

As Morel entered the dining hall, he noticed the guards and sized them up. He was directed to the head of the table close to where Merak and Lady K would be sitting. Perfect. If there was a battle, he didn’t want to waste time with minions. Then Lady K appeared.

“Welcome champions. I am Lady K. We’ll begin feasting and have the awards ceremony at 8:00, but first I would like to ask your attention.”

“I organized this tournament to identify the best of the best, people who would be able to handle themselves in even the most dire circumstances. I am collecting artifacts and am recruiting people to retrieve them for me. I’ll pay $500,000 for an artifact or trade for something of equal worth. Those interested should come to Pelevion and visit my villa in Ugini.”

After the brief introduction, she clapped her hands and the table was set with a bountiful feast.

Morel started to soften his view of Lady K. Anyone with the resources to pay so much for the retrieval of artifacts sounded like someone he’d like to work for. He went around and chatted with Lady K and the people she identified as working for her. This group included Merak, Jeska and Mizar. These guys were tight lipped, but not bad people.

At the end of the night, Morel got his money and left with the party. He wasn’t attacked. No one even looked at him funny. Kyra was wrong. He really wanted to start working for Lady K. The elves were convinced that anyone collecting artifacts was evil, but Morel didn’t see it that way. Why should only the elite in government have artifacts? Somehow, he just didn’t think the elves would ever see eye to eye with him on that.

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Tournament Day 8

Day 8

Both the party and team 6 still remembered Jeska’s warnings about becoming a target for being too exceptional. For this reason, Red chose not to use Orchid Malevolence’s Soul Burn and team 6 would presumably be holding something back as well.

Despite the limitations, “Red” and Morel were extremely confident of their chances placing “all in” bets of $6000 apiece. This was twice as much as Kyra or Tathel who were more conservative in their estimations. Team 6 had demonstrated itself to be very formidable in its other matches.

The 3 on 3 match opened well enough, team 6’s archer missed their shot against Morel. “Red” prepped Morel with Reverse Missiles to neutralize the archer’s future attacks. Morel returned fire with throwing an ax into the chest of Galadil, team 6’s tank. “Red” also cast Reverse Missiles on himself. With Tathel invisible, it seemed that 2 of the 3 opponents were completely neutered in the fight. Only the mage, Algon, remained an active threat. This looked like an easy fight.

Except, where was Algon? He was hiding back in the tunnel. Tathel decided to teleport behind the mage and would have had the perfect opportunity to attack while the mage prepared if he was so disorientated after the spatial shift. Instead of losing his spell, Algon successfully created the most powerful Sunbolt possible. It glowed brightly in his hand and then he threw it directly for Morel.

If his brother wasn’t directly behind him, Morel might have tried dodging and been lucky enough to avoid the attack. As it was, he knew his brother wouldn’t be able to handle something so powerful and opted to take the hit. Little did he know it would be strong enough to disintegrate a lesser man (30 DAM impaling*). Without his armor, there is no question he wouldn’t be standing. Morel thought briefly about how happy he was to save his brother from what could have been his death.

This was the turning point in the battle. Galadil got up and took advantage of the physical shock from the Sunbolt to get in a solid hit on Morel’s arm crippling it. Morel was now outmatched as he was attacked by 2 swords and was only able to defend with one.

Tathel is still in position against Algon and unsuccessfully attempts a shot to the vitals. This causes the mage to turn around and discover his attacker. This gives “Red” the opportunity to throw an ax at the mage to cripple his leg.

Ignoring the fallen mage, Tathel becomes invisible and starts stalking the archer. The archer takes shots at the targets Morel and learns the dwarf is immune to his arrows. Unfortunately, he successfully dodges each arrow that’s returned. Tathel gets into position and gets a minor wound to the vitals before the archer turns his attention towards the party’s elf cleric.

Algon is not neutralized. He casts levitate on himself and can ignore the fact his leg doesn’t work. It takes several seconds for “Red” to reach his brother to offer assistance, all the while Algon is preparing a lightning ball and waiting for him to get within range. At a critical point, Algon launches the magical lightning at “Red” only to have it come directly back at him. It would have hit if not for Blink.

Galadil sees “Red” as the bigger threat now. Orchid Malevolence is a 10 lb. mace that could easily break one of his swords if he tries to parry. Galadil angles to “Red’s” left and brings 2 strikes against his arm. “Red” parries one blow, but decides to use Iron Arm to improve his chances. It was a bad time for a spell failure. All that happened was a loud pop and a puff of smoke. Then his arm gave way under the assault of a long sword and his mace fell to the ground.

Tathel wasn’t having much better luck. The archer forced him to Blink again and again causing him to get more and more tired. Although he had yet to take a blow, his health was suffering from all the magic he was forced to do. The brief reprieves he was able to get by turning invisible allowed him to get better positioning on the field, but weren’t enough to give him an advantage.

Algon had learned that Sunbolt was his most effective weapon against the dwarfs. If he had a way to do it faster, there would be no way to “Red” or Morel to respond. As it was, Galadil was keeping both of them busy. He could easily parry anything the dwarfs could throw at him. With only 1 arm each, the dwarfs were certain to succumb to his brutally effective swords soon.

Then Galadil scored a strong hit on Morel’s one remaining good arm. Morel was out of the competition… or was he. Limping forward, Morel threw his body against Galadil attempting to slam him hard. Fearing further damage, Galadil parried the attack, but it caused his short sword to snap against Morel’s armor.

Galadil maintains his defenses against “Red” and appears to have the situation under control until Morel once again threw his body against Galadil. This causes the swordsman to drop his weapon. “Red” sees his opportunity and drives an ax towards Galadil’s leg. Failing his dodge, the swordsman drops as his leg becomes crippled.

The tide of battle starts to turn and Tathel comes out of invisibility to do a significant blow against the archer. In return he is driven away by an arrow, which forces another Blink by the elf cleric.

Algon has been firing Sunbolt after Sunbolt into Morel hoping to drop the hearty dwarf. Now, that he is without working arms, he turns his attention to “Red”. Algon is getting tired now, but manages to have strong Sunbolts despite his weakness. “Red” starts picking up the axes that are scattered around the field tossing them at the mage as soon as he is able. It is a time consuming process, but still faster than Algon can cast and throw a Sunbolt.

Algon is forced to Blink out of the way of most of the axes, but eventually gets his chance to fire when “Red” runs out of axes and is forced to go to the far side of the arena for more ammunition. In his current condition, “Red” has little chance to dodge the attacks and suffers for it.

Morel can’t hope to help against Algon, but limps forward to eliminate the archer. Before he gets there, Tathel manages to land another hit, but passes out from his magical exertions. The archer stays standing, but only just long enough for Morel to close the distance. Then he passes out, too.

Now, the only active fighters are “Red” and Algon. Algon punishes “Red” severely with Sunbolts and finally “Red” has had enough. Draining the last of the powerstone loaned to him by Kyra, he casts Hawk Flight. Fortunately, Algon needed the same amount of time to prep a Sunbolt and “Red” was able to successfully complete his casting.

Straight towards Algon at 80 mph “Red” attempted a slam attack. Algon avoids the hit by Blinking away. He loses his spell, but starts casting again as soon as he reappears. “Red” flies down and grabs Therak (The Oath Keeper).

Flying towards the Algon again, “Red” readies his ax and this time succeeds in sinking his ax into the mage’s chest. With all other party members down and little hope of escaping “Red’s” wrath, team 6 yields. Team 11, the party’s team, has won the tournament.

The sweetness of victory was tainted by the bitterness of injury. “Red” could only use his right arm and Morel couldn’t use either arm. The tournament was still continuing and Morel had 2 hours before his next fight. “Red” needed to fight in the morning. Tathel’s restoration took a month to restore a limb.

Would the dwarfs be forced to withdraw from competition? Instant Restoration was expensive and even if the party could afford it, which it could not, the potential prize money wouldn’t justify the expense. The only hope would be finding someone willing to barter Instant Restoration for work done by the party. If it was possible to find someone like that, would 2 hours be enough to strike the deal and be back for the competition?

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Tournament Day 7

Day 7

Kyra has made a small fortune gambling and sees no reason to stop as long as the tournament continues. She knows “Red” is fighting today and jokes with him that she is think about betting for his opponent, Thrak (Black Ax). It’s a good thing she didn’t. “Red” used the Iron Arm spell to neutralize Thrak’s black great ax. In a single attack, “Red” attacks Thrak’s arm forcing him to drop his ax. He picked up the ax again, so “Red” severed the arm from the body forcing a surrender.

Of course, Tathel was kind enough to get Thrak’s arm reattached and “Red” repaired his equipment. It made “Red” wonder if anyone would show them the same consideration if roles were reversed. If ever there would be an opportunity to find out, it would be in the next Kyra individual match.

Kyra would be facing a dark elf named Torver. To say it was intimidating for her is an understatement. Instead of the typical $1000+ bet she would place on herself, it was only $200.

Kyra opened the match with an early shot that was easily dodged by Torver. The dark elf closed the distance quickly with a teleport to be right on top of Kyra who is levitating a few yards in the air by now. Kyra punishes Torver with a well-placed shot to the torso. Torver then looses a spell that causes Kyra to go blind. Low on confidence and unable to see, Kyra yields before ever taking any damage.

After winning 7 straight days gambling at the tournament, Kyra decides it’s time to lighten her purse and avoid bank fees by going shopping. Before going, she offers up a prayer to Correllon and tithes thousands to the temple.

In the elven area of Gotham, Kyra finds a master bow maker. After negotiating with him, he commissions a new bow. It will be an Elven bow, finely crafted and tailored to match her increasing strength. The yet to be named bow will also be ornately decorated and balanced for greater accuracy. All in all, Kyra paid over $10,000 and will need to wait 10 months before collecting her new weapon.

Somehow, between competing and shopping, Kyra also managed to discover that no one on team 6 is associated with Jeska’s brothers. With that knowledge, she invites the team out to dinner to talk about the tournament. Tomorrow, Morel and team 6’s Ellariel were to compete in their respective matches. First, however, the party and team 6 were going to be fighting for the championship in the team division. If either person were seriously wounded, it would be a problem for the individual competitions later that day.

Kyra originally proposed that both Morel and Ellariel sit out, but Morel wasn’t worried about becoming injured. In the end, a compromise was struck that Kyra and Ellariel would sit out of the team final. After informing the tournament committee and gambling establishments, the party returned to the druid’s woods for the night.

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Tournament Day 6

Day 6

Day 6 of the tournament was marked with controversy. The 2nd match of the day was canceled because both contestants were killed on their way to the stadium. Bariel, the murderer, struck them down in public and in broad day light. In addition to disqualifying himself from the competition, Bariel cleared a whole bracket that would allow Merak to advance into the quarter finals unchallenged. Technically, Merak had one more fight scheduled, but it should prove a formality considering he was favored 20 to 1.

The continued fulfillment of Jeska’s prophecy didn’t do much to dissuade the party from the tournament. It just marked another day of successful gambling for Kyra. This was a big day for the party. Kyra and Morel had individual matches before a team match later in the day. Even team 6 would be competing. Everyone would be betting heavily today.

Kyra was first of the party to fight. Her opponent, Doandrael, was a swordsman and magic user. This match started the same as her opener with Kerran with Kyra casting Levitate while Doandrael charged across the field at a clip of 6 meters per second. The only change was that Kyra actually got off a shot that failed to hit the swordsman’s legs before he closed.

The outcome was predictable with Kyra staying outside sword reach and with Blink to protect her against anything ranged Doandrael might throw at her. It was only a short time before Kyra got her lucky shot and won the match.

Morel faced a similarly predictable battle. He was pitted against Maiph, a tank making use of a morning star. Morel threw 2 axes while closing the difference only to have both dodged. Maiph attacked twice and would have hit twice except Morel was adept at dodging.

The deciding point of the match was when Morel did a devasting attack against the morning star causing the chain to break and the ball go flying. Disarmed but not ready to yield, Doandrael backpedaled and picked up Urnilin (Death Song). Sadly it didn’t have the desired effect because Morel swung both of his remaining axes at the arm so bold as to pick up his prized weapon and separated it from Doandrael’s body. With blood spurting from a stump of an arm, Doandrael yielded.

Tathel was eager to assist Doandrael with a Restoration while “Red” repaired all the damaged equipment. It wasn’t long before the fallen warrior was on track to recover.

The team match was similarly one sided when the party fought team 15. Team 15 was made up of 2 archer/clerics and 2 tanks. Opening the match, Tathel cast Haste on Morel to give him a chance against the archers. Immediately afterward, Morel charges down the field throwing an ax at the nearest enemy, an archer, and takes off his arm.

Kyra is similarly lucky and shoots a heavily armored fighter in the face causing him to drop prone. Morel continues to advance forward and launches another Urnilin (Death Song) at the 2nd archer, but misses and severe the leg off the only standing tank.

The archer with the severed arm moves to help the tank Kyra hit and tries to get him back into the fight. He groggily starts to move, but isn’t moving fast. The only archer still able to use his bow closes on Morel and attempts a point blank shot to the eye, but loses his grip on the bow and drops it. Offended, Morel takes off the archer’s leg.

After it was clear the tide of battle was against them, Team 15 forfeits. Tathel was quick to step in and re-attach limbs and heal. In another month, this team would be back to full strength. Thanks to “Red” and his Repair spell, all their equipment was in full repair as well.

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Tournament Day 5

Day 5

In the morning, Kyra informed the party that Merak was part of the shadow organization. It wasn’t clear where this information came from, but everyone knew it was reliable. With her continued success gambling, it was enough to make a person wonder if she had special knowledge of the games, too.

Knowing Merak is an enemy changes how the group will interact with him. It was fortuitous that “Red” didn’t have the chance to speak to him the night before. The entire party may have been put into jeopardy.

Day 5 was “Red’s” day to fight. He was matched against Eoron, a swordsman/magic user. “Red” and Morel were excited because “Red” was the underdog 3 to 1. It would be a great opportunity to score some major winnings.

The money simply faded away when Eoron failed to show up for the match. All bets were off. News spread through the stadium that Eoron had been killed in public and his sword stolen not long before the match. Could this be part of what Jeska was talking about? Was “Red” being artificially advanced?

Merak also fought again on day 5. This time it was against Galadil from team 6. Merak used his same finger point and stroll against Galadil. Using a sword against Merak only hurt Galadil.

The elf was a little smarter than his first opponent. He attempted to use the magic in his sword. A green stream of light came from the tip of the sword and hit Merak in the chest. Both men fell prone, but only Merak got up.

Tathel and “Red” offer assistance to team 6 and in no time Galadil is back on his feet.

The next fight of interest was the party against Team 10 a group of 5 tanks with halberds. The extreme reach of the halberd make it difficult to reach its wielder. “Red” prepped Morel with Might and Haste with the hopes he could both break enemy weapons and avoid being hit himself.

Ever the front line, Morel charges into the fray and is immediately assaulted with 4 halberds. Forgetting that he should dodge, he instead parries the attacks and then counter-attack dealing major damage to one of the halberds. The next round of attacks were not as forgiving. Thora (Loyal Protector) gets broken.

One of team 10 see Tathel and attacks forcing him to blink to safety. “Red” abandons his brother and moves to defend the more lightly armored elf. He scores a solid hit on the enemy halberd causing it to break.

While virtually all of team 10 is focused on Morel, Kyra casually starts picking them off one by one with shots to the eye. After she drops 3 of them, team 10 decides to yield.

Afterward, Tathel and “Red” are diligent to help team 10 patch up injuries and repair damaged equipment.

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Tournament Day 4

Day 4

Kyra and Morel have their first opportunities to fight. Kyra is pitted against Kerran, a human specializing in unarmed attacks and magic. Morel fights a mage named Krixy. Not forgetting to bet on mostly every fight, Kyra goes to battle.

Kyra opens her fight casting Haste then Levitate. She demonstrates competency and doesn’t need to retry any of her spells. It’s a good thing because Kerran is able to cross the field of 70 yards just as she finishes and would have landed a blow if Kyra hadn’t blinked straight up into the air.

Kerran is discouraged, but casts a spell and a lightning whip appears in his hand. Kyra might have been able to interrupt the spell except she appeared momentarily dazed after blinking. She gets off a shot that gets dodged just as it’s ready. Kerran attempts to hit Kyra with the lightning whip, but Kyra blinks outside the range of the weapon.

Kyra keeps shooting and Kerran keeps dodging. Kerran readies lightning bolt after lightning bolt forcing Kyra to blink to safety. With Kyra’s power stone steadily draining; it seems like only a matter of time before Kerran will have depleted Kyra’s defenses entirely. A solid hit might mean the end of the match for Kyra.

Kerran didn’t appear to ever slow down and was very hard to hit. He could successfully dodge attacks all day. It would take anticipating Kerra’s movements and predicting which way he would go to avoid her shot if Kyra was going to have any chance of slowing him down. Kyra made a quick prayer to Corellon and let loose her arrow where she hoped Kerran would be… and landed an arrow squarely in his chest.

Kerran gasped and then fell unconscious.

With a newly repaired Thora, Morel set out to fight Krixy. Moving at full speed, he saw Krixy begin to cast a spell. He threw Urnilin (Death Song) all the way from the far side of the arena, but the ax fell short. Continuing to advance forward, he threw Thora and came close, but missed. Morel had just closed the distance with backup axes in hand when Krixy burst into flame.

Morel swung at center mass believing he had a hit, but the flame simply reformed in the slices where his axes passed. Stepping forward Krixy enveloped Morel in flame and his armor offered no protection. Morel had no choice; he simply kept backing up to attack only to be consumed by fire again.

His beard started to smoke and his breathing became labored, but Morel fought on. It entered his mind that there was no way to defeat an enemy that couldn’t be hurt, but he knew of his duty to Kord to fight with honor. That meant refusing to yield despite overwhelming odds.

The fight seemed to go on forever. Swing. Swing. Burn. Then something unexpected happened. Krixy went unconscious and stopped moving. Somehow, Morel had managed to do enough damage to actually hurt the mage. Victory for Morel.

After the narrow victories for the party, everyone was in the mood to celebrate. To the dwarfs, that meant taking a tour of all the taverns. The elves were agreeable especially Kyra who was hopeful to find her friends from team 6.

The party didn’t see anyone of interest in the first couple of places visited. On the way out the door to find another bar, the “Red” was stopped by a human woman with brilliant blue hair.

“Let me buy you and your friends a drink.”

Happy for the unexpected attention and free ale, the dwarfs accepted and the elves reluctantly came along.

A little confused why anyone would buy a dwarf a drink, “Red” decided to ask,
“So… are you a big fan of the games?”

“No. And you shouldn’t be either. My brothers are using the tournament as a way to identify threats.”

The woman gestured to Orchid Malevolence.

“Your mace is very special. Avoid using its power if you don’t want to become a target.”

Red just grinned as if she had given him a compliment.

“Aye. It’s plenty powerful being swung by my hand.”

“The games are fixed to guarantee certain people make it to the finals. Expect foul play in the arena and in the streets.”

Kyra was engrossed in the conversation from the first hint of a shadow organization. She wanted to know what kind of group this was.

“Are your brothers responsible for the disappearing caravans?”

“Possibly. I don’t know all of their business.”

This woman was still a mystery to “Red”.

“Why are you helping us?”

“I just can’t stand what they are doing any more.”

With that, the blue haired woman got up to leave.

“I didn’t catch your name….”

“Jeska.”

With that she was gone.

“Red” didn’t know much, but he knew that Merak was involved in this or would be involved. He was obviously exceptional. That means he was either a part of the group Jeska talked about or would soon be a target. Finding him would help the party get to the bottom of things.

The party searched as late as possible while still having time to get back to the druid’s woods. Merak was nowhere to be found. Rumors were that he simply appeared when he was going to fight and would go missing immediately after his duties were done.

Merak wasn’t around, but the party ran into team 6. Kyra brought them into the secret in hopes of keeping them safe. Nothing new was learned from talking to them, but the bonds of friendship were strengthened in this new alliance.

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Tournament Day 2 and 3

Day 2

Kyra continues making bets on the fights and bets heavily whenever there’s anyone from Team 6 competing. This is the first day the party’s team, 11, competes. The match is against team 12, a group of 4 mages and a high ST, high HT tank wearing heavy plate armor and carrying a great ax.

The match opens with Morel and the team 12 tank charging into the center of the arena. Tathel moves to the side and uses Shadow Blade to turn invisible. “Red” doesn’t see the mages as a threat and decides to help his brother. Kyra looses an arrow from the back of the arena at a mage, but misses.

Before Morel can close the distance to the tank, the team 12 mages enter into the equation. Mage after mage directs magic against Morel. He resists and presses forward with an attack against the tank. Because of forward momentum, Morel misses once and lands one against the enemy torso. One of the mages successfully targets “Red” stunning him mentally.

Tathel successfully uses his invisibility to sneak behind one of the mages, but then fails his attack. Now visible, he becomes a target of the mages. “Red” recovers from being stunned only to be stunned again. Tathel is similarly suffering the same difficulty. Only Kyra is able to play an active role in combat. She shoots only to have a mage dodge out of the way.

All the while, the tank is slowly taking Morel apart. Thora (Loyal Protector) deflects the first blow against the great ax, but is broken. Then Morel attempts to dodge mostly unsuccessfully. Only his armor is keeping him in the fight. Try as he might, the mental stun is just too hard to shake off.

With Morel temporarily out of commission, one of the mages is free to close on Kyra’s position and is successful in stunning her. At this moment, all party members are suffering mental stun and it’s just a matter of time before the tank can steam roll over everyone.

That’s when the improbable happened; Morel shook off his mental stun and begins a renewed offensive against the tank. This took pressure off the other party members and the mages concentrated effort on him again. Kyra recovered from her mental stun and managed to avoid being targeted long enough to get a lucky head shot on one of the mages causing him to drop.

“Red” managed to resist the spell targeted at him. He then closed on a mage causing him so much trouble and crippled both his legs in a single devastating double attack. Free to act again, Morel managed to land an ax on the leg of the tank crippling it. With 3 men down and little hope of victory, Team 12 conceded.

Day 3

Kyra continues her gambling and wins the overwhelming majority of the time despite little knowledge of any of the contestants. She bets heavily on team 6 and wins.

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