Chapter 16: Dragon's Dying Breath
Our heroes find themselves split. Aeowynn is MIA. Sharn and Elesandra are trying to escape from a den of snakes in some ancient underground building. Firia and Maebh are starting the search for the others with two elves.
- Firia find tracks leading to an apparently dangerous section of the woods, according to the elves.
- Maebh convinces the reluctant elves to journey with them.
- Firia is uncertain about the nature of the brambles. Are they alive? Maebh sees nothing out of place.
- They lose the tracks for Sharn and Elesandra but come upon some Orc tracks.
- Maebh sends Scáthfile to scout the Orc camp. He catches scent of Aeowynn and a number of Orcs.
- A rabbit, scared from the presence of the cat runs into the Orc camp, putting the Orcs on alert.
- Maebh sees Aeoewynn chained to two others across the camp. Aeowynn is looking quite beat up and broken.
- Meanwhile, Elesandra vaporizes an iron-bound door that leads to a hallway. The door had something scratched into it. Something about “fire” and “awakening”.
- Sharn and Elesandra continue finding a winding dirt path through a broken wall that led down into a very large underground hall.
- They stop, collecting mushrooms and end up at a very large door. It opened and they entered a massive and very dark room.
- Peering into the darkness two giant eyes appeared before them sending them falling backwards as a sheet of flame ignited over their heads. A dragon!
- The awakening dragon roared and shook the very earth causing part of the roof to cave in.
- Just as Maebh and Firia were about to get overwhelmed by Orcs the ground gave way and they tumbled down into a very large, mostly dark room. A beam of light illuminated a very large, very angry dragon.
- Firia takes cover from the imminent threat and searches for Aeowynn in the rubble.
- Maebh sends Scáthfile to attack a lone Orc that managed to survive the cave-in and then runs towards the dragon. What is she thinking!?
- Faced with a beast many times her size, Sharn is terrified and cannot move.
- Elesandra smacks Sharn in the face and attempts to teleport them away from the beast. Her magic fails her and instead Maebh and Firia appear before her, directly in front of the dragon! She then leaps to the side, drawing upon distant memories of dragon-folk and how fierce their attack may be. She spies a shadowy chain linked to the dragon's ankle.
- With the four girls in front of it the Dragon takes a deep breath, stoking the fires within it's belly. The flames shoot wild and do not harm them.
- Sharn, enraged with bloodlust, runs towards the dragon and punches it, slicing it open.
- Maebh, seeing her friends, chants a tune that augments their natural abilities and then moves directly toward the dragon. Again! Oh Maebh!
- Elesandra, steeled in her resolve to leave this area casts a spell to send her past the beast. She succeeds and ends up in front of Aeowynn, who is chained to two dead prisoners. These spells of movement are still fuzzy for her and Elesandra ends up sending Sharn quite a ways past the beast as well.
- Firia, now face to face with the dragon summons mighty earth magic and a golem forms from huge blocks of stone.
- Faced with this new, large threat, the dragon rakes the stone golem with it's claws.
- Behind the dragon, Scáthfile is attacked by the lone Orc.
- Elesandra reacts and attacks the Orc while moving past it towards Aoewynn. With a flick of her wrist the chains fall off and the poor Orc starts to rise into the air.
- Firia commands her golem to grapple with the dragon, attempting to hold it in place. The golem fails so Firia moves towards the dragon, ready to fight. Instead of attacking the dragon, she casts a spell upon the shadowy chain. It quivers under the unslaught.
- Blinking in the darkness Sharn realizes where she is and moves towards Elesandra and Aeowynn. Seeing how battered Aeowynn looks she quickly assesses her wounds and pops her Aeowynn's should back into place. Aeowynn, only seeing an Orc in front of her and dazed in pain attempts to push Sharn back.
- Maebh, seeing what Firia's attack on the shadow chain does chants a dispel on it as well and then climbs onto the dragon's back. Maebh! What in the seven hells are you doing!?
- Flailing around in the air the magic lifting the Orc stops. He plummets to the floor, limbs popping off his joints.
- The dragon slashes out at Firia and the golem.
- Fire erupts from Elesandra's staff striking at the shadowy chain. She can see how close it is to succumbing to their magical onslaught. Will the dragon stop attacking if no longer chained by the shadow?
- Maebh, who had stopped her augment chant start up the rhythm again, changing the tempo and cursing the dragon as well. It is paralyzed under the odd words she is singing.
- Firia gathers her might and fires and icy, magical blast towards the shadowy chain. It flickers for a moment but coalesces back, keeping the dragon under it's sway.
- Sharn doesn't see the magical energies attacking the shadowy chain and sees her opening for attacking the dragon. Screaming and running towards it she slices the soft underbelly of the dragon. Blood erupts from the gash and the dragon sinks down, it's life ebbing away.
- In it's dying torment, the dragon sends images of pain and suffering into the mind of Elesandra, Maebh and Firia. It hadn't known freedom for a long time, but in death it will know release. Before it dies and in a moment of clarity the dragon briefly sends the message that it is sorry that it attacked. At the same time the shadowy chain tightens, exerting it's influence, and images of hate and fire and destruction pour out it until it's last dying breath.