On board the ship, newly dubbed the Outlawz Revenge…
It is was a dreary day. The cold rain pelting our faces, to no thanks at all to the wind make it perpetually worse. We shivered above and below, for no one could find a warm place.
It didn’t help matters that half of the prisoners we rescued were sick. Thora, our Golaith Druid reported that the illness was more than just a cold, but a disease. To avoid an outbreak, we let only the stronger of those who could endure make their way to attempt to aid the sick and possibly dying.
On the deck, despite the rain, I knelt before the fallen Slythe’s body. Praying was not something I was accustomed to… not after all of the godly troubles I and my friends had suffered through.
Regardless, I prayed to whatever deity would hear me. With so many of them dead or imprisoned it was hard to say. As I prayed sparkles rose up from Slythe’s body and with a small contained explosion appeared a displace beast. I rolled backwards drawing my hand crossbow, ready to attack—but then I noticed the rider of the beast. It was a Pixie in heavy armor.
The displacer beast growled at me, and then I heard the Pixie’s voice whisper, “There, there George.”
Sensing no imminent threat from the newcomer, I holstered by crossbow. And asked of him who he was and what his purpose would be. The armored Pixie merely asked what happened to Slythe and then for his journal. He introduced himself as Devoir. A warrior from the Feywild, and twin brother to Slythe. The passing of one Pixie’s death must have opened up a rift between the Feywild and the Mortal World long enough to allow the passage of another. Needless to say it did not take much convincing to get Devoir to join our cause.
The night came as we sailed away from the island and finally got a rest. The rain continued, but was falling lightly. I stood on the front of the ship, staring up into the rain… a sort of cleansing ritual. I was remembering my wife, Rachel, and my dear sweet daughter, Ai.
A fiery light in the distance caught our eyes just then. We realized the iron ships of fire were Aquilan owned, and meant Tieflings galore. So we changed our heading and sailed south east, away from Diablo Island where those ships were going.
Eventually we docked our ship off shore of the land directly east of us and decided, we would go with Thora to the Goliath homeland and try to recruit allies in our war against the Hells.
Even from a mile offshore we could hear the screaming of pain and the howling of monkey like beings… the place was living up to its name already. We went south along the coast until we found a river, once the River of Life, now tainted by the River Styxx and souls of the damned.
After making it to the mouth of the river we went on land and made our way into the wood. Our goal was to the north, and we would have to pass the Hellwood in order to get there.
As we went, we came to a clearing of sorts, and I climbed a large set of rocks to scout around. To my dismay I quickly spotted on a nearby bluff, a large black wolf howling, with red streaked fur, and flames licking its lips. Then I spotted the three others. And as a faint wind blew past I realized we had made a possible fatal mistake. We were upwind of the beasts.
Without a moments notice a wolf wan up and breathed a blast of fire, engulfing most of us within its hellish energies, as the others came running up and attacking, snarling and snapping at our allies heels. I went into action, slinging a bola, and drawing blood from the nearby beast.
Devoir seemed just as reckless, if not more so than his brother, as he charged right into the middle of things.
Another blast of fire engulfed us, drawing my blood, and burning the wounds closed just as fast. Then another blast of fire. I was teetering on the edge of consciousness, as I backed up and summoned my strength, then I fell to my knees, hiding from the view of the wolves, and i began the deadly game of popping up and firing my hand crossbow at the Alpha Wolf of the pack. I tried to remain as hidden as I could, but I feared they knew my location. I continued this until Brandis joined in my strategy and finally we slay the foul hell beasts.
We gathered our strength, licking our wounds. We found a pair of Lizard Man tracks leading away into the brusg. Brandis and I noticed this and saw the culprit hiding in a bush. He noticed our gazes landing on him and he took off deeper into the Hellwood. We tracked the reptile humanoid to the village from where it originated. Armed of the folk walked the barriers of the small community. Then we saw that they were leaving their village in squads of armed soldiers.
With my expert shadowy cloaking, we snuck through the woods and found a group of Lizard Men wandering past. Knowing they were out to get us, and most likely hostile, we ambushed them. I blew a poison into the wind right at the leading member, and although he seemed to resist most of it, he still gripped at his head, no doubt under an assault for control of his mind.
We all did our thing, but it seemed we did so to little effect.
Of course at this point we were noticed, and the battle truly began. Hoffat began casting at the big lizard guy, who doubled the size of nearly all of his comrades. A mystic fired lightning at me, zapping me, and I retaliated, by throwing a bola a the leader, and the special razorbladed rope I made took his scaley head right off.
I turned my attention on the big guy but just then the Displacer Beast runs up to me and Devoir is on its back unconscious and bleeding badly. I growled that I would not lose another Pixie! I quickly tied up his wounds and Devoir woke up, trying to get back in the battle instantly. I heard Eti cry out and I turned to see him hit the ground as the same lizard who spied on us earlier reappeared and blasted light hin my direction… cold darkness embraced me.
My eyes shot open as I recovered some stamina. I climbed to my feet woozily, and aimed for the big lizard guy sending a bolt one eye and out the other.
With the fall of the big guy our battle for the moment was over.
I felt my wear muscles aching, and wondered just how many more years could I handle such intense battles, then I realized, like Gustav, my master, and grandfather, fought well into his second century of life, and I could only hope to do the same.