Taihun

Kobold Hunt pt. 18
Tied Up

HexFang tries to move her tail, swishing from side to side trying to get free to grab the ropes and belts tying off her mouth; to no avail, alas. Gemscale tries the same, and again cannot move his tail much beyond what the tight metal chains allow. However he does manage to feel the hooks in the floor loosen as he lifts with all his might in one fluid motion. They groan and stretch as he moves his heft upwards as far as he can, but it’s not enough. He can’t straighten any of his limbs enough to apply his full strength or weight as leverage. He has, however, lessened the hold the chains have on him. If he tries a the same lift a few more times, perhaps a chain hook might be pulled from the ground.

Aar and Zadkiel struggle to see much beyond the flames, the sparks occassionally flying into their eyes and blinding them for a moment. These flames remain as a dark shape appears behind them, in front of the dragons.
[In Draconic]“Taytay see you, craterman. Taytay see all.”
When he doesn’t get a response: “Taytay get what Taytay want from craterman…” he whispers with a hiss, only Aar managing to make out what is said. With that he takes a serated dagger seemingly made from one piece of stone and drags it along Zadkiel’s arm, drawing blood. Taytay scoops the blood up in a pottery chalice, then dabs the wound with dirty rag. “Now Taytay do two rituals!” he roars in triumph, cackling as he turns and faces the dragons.
“Taytay make you not talk. Taytay tamer of dragons. Dragons obey Taytay when Taytay Dragon Overlord!” and with a smirk, he passes by closely to HexFang, secure in the knowledge that despite not being caged, the dragons are tied down firmly enough to not be a concern to him right now.

As Taytay wanders by the wolf enclosures, the creatures quiet down and stop rattling their cages. He can be heard more clearly explaining to the other priests that the blood of the Crater Man (Zadkiel) is to be put into a stoppered vial until he can commune again with the “Great Boom” as he calls it. It also seems the rituals need subjects, and that one involves the Dragon Eggs, the other the blood of Zadkiel.

The conversation turns to the Dragons and the Half-Elf; the Bard, it seems, is simply being held so he’s more fresh when they choose to eat him. The Dragons are being kept until the Egg ritual is completed, and then it seems the Dragons will be able to be controlled by the end result.

As Taytay leaves the room, he yells back to the priests: “Taytay gets Potuk’s share. Potuk not Taytay friend.” It seems that, if he’s alive, Potuk is also not in the good books.

One of the priests moves away from the chest and goes to inspect Aar, giving his legs a pinch to see how tender the meat is, a hungry look in his eyes.

What do you do?

Given the long rest you’ve all had, you all regain all lost Hit Points and spell slots, as well as Hit Dice and breath weapons.

Hexfang +5XP
Gemscale +10XP
Zadkiel +10XP
Aar +10XP

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Citadel Delve pt. 41
The Frontier

After some rest the hour approaches midnight. The cold of the outside seems to stay at bay, the glow of Simon’s staff providing light and the huddle of bodies and the occassional puff of warm air from Adrik’s subtle but continuous manipulation of the Feyweave throughout the respite provides enough heat. Well fed and nourished, Simon passes around a waterskin as the impromptu indoor camp is broken down and packed away.

Approaching the doorway cautiously, Bennet and Adrik look around the edges, the circular doorway separating the yellowish-grey stonework of the citadel from what looks to be a freezing cavern ahead. Simon’s light only penetrates so far, but it looks like a huge cave filled with stalagmites and stalagtites. A whooshing sound can be heard, and tiny fragments of green glass can be seen on the ground, along with another clay square, just beyond the doorway.

Unlike at the entrance, there is no door. Everyone can simply look into the cavern. Bennet, however, looks nervously back at the group, wordlessly asking if, given the writing, he should step over the threshold…

What do you do?

The writing on the wall reads “Entry only for the worthy. Those that fail the test will suffer.”

Talison has 1 level of exhaustion, meaning he has disadvantage on all ability checks. This does not include saves or attacks.

Talison +15XP
Nix +15XP
Darrin +15XP
Lorawyn +15XP
Adrik +5XP
Ero +15XP
Theodore +15XP

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Citadel Delve pt. 40
After the Battle

Feeling utterly exhausted, a palpable breath of relief seems to jointly come from all. The doorway ahead yawns open, dark and forbodingly, but the danger, it seems, has passed.

Theodore charges up the tunnel to check the previous room, seeing that all the portals have now closed. Coming back down, he arrives in time to get the full brunt of Darrin's tirade. "… yet another fellow poking around. We barely had time to know the first one!" Ero reflexively shifts towards Nix.

As the group begins to settle, and talk of resting and getting to know each other more bubbles to the surface, Simon and Jila set about securing the area and handing out bedrolls to those that need them. Korik, Bennet and Adrik settle down to eat some jerkied meats, Jila handing everyone some soft flatbread the shape and consistency of a pancake. It's filled with herbs, and has a moist texture to it, but is otherwise bland. A typical Elven ration.

Jila then settles next to Talison, and speaks to the group as a whole, or whoever chooses to listen.
"I never chose the military life. My father did, and so did his mother. My mother was… reticent… to see her third child inducted into the fighting forces of Magolglir. Prince Feirens himself once visited my barracks. It was a big day, and the first day I led others in rank. My promotion and the visit were going to be the most abiding memories I had of the day.
"My mother also visited, bearing fruitloaf and savoury sticks as gifts. Civilians often aren't allowed in the main barracks, but because of her husband she was granted access. Oh, the shame… My mother saw Prince Feirens' retinue, and offered them some fruitloaf. When they didn't respond, she…" Jila takes in a shuddery breath "She scowled. She furrowed her brow deeply and let her disappointment show on her face. She didn't know the retinue was ordered not to respond that day, that those in the service of the Prince only address the Prince himself. But the barracks did. I didn't live it down for over thirty years. It was perhaps the most shameful day of my life." He looks at Talison for a moment, as if deciding. "Shame seems to have found me again."
Looking around and seeing that his words might be mistaken, he corrects: "Our treatment of Talison. Being a mule, he isn't afforded the same courtesy and freedoms as a paragon, or even a fullblood. But he has fought bravely this day, and deserves more respect than I would show at home."

While giving everyone the opportunity to talk tactics and learn about each other, the rest also allows some to rest their weary muscles and get some sleep. The air cools as the hours draw on, the hour approaching midnight outside as the first of those to fall asleep begin stirring from their slumbers. Simon then poses the question: "Should we continue resting until the morning, or shall we press on in the dead of night?"

What do you do?

Everyone should take this opportunity to share one tale. It can be a "Bard's Tale", which is a made up story in the game world. Don't worry about canonicity; mistakes, exaggerations and total fictions are the bread and butter of bards.
Or your tale can be one of your own character, a story they share with the group. It can be some backstory, a short treatise on their goals, or a joke told in-character. Whether told in first-person with details, or as simple as "My character shares a story about their past, focusing on their village burning down as a kid.", it's fine.

The writing on the wall reads "Entry only for the worthy. Those that fail the test will suffer."

Talison has 1 level of exhaustion, meaning he has disadvantage on all ability checks. This does not include saves or attacks.

Talison +10XP
Nix +10XP
Darrin +15XP
Lorawyn +10XP
Adrik +5XP
Ero +10XP
Theodore +10XP

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Kobold Hunt pt. 17
Guests of His Majesty

The Kobolds hear the pleas and excuses from Gemscale and Aar. Jumjik turns his spear around so the wooden base is pointed to the middle of Aar's head. Thrusting forward, he tries to knock out the Elfblood yarnspinner with the butt of his weapon, but Bardino quickly ducks under and around. He grabs the shaft of the spear firmly, his face almost falling from the jovial, disarming smile. And yet it holds firm, Aar batting the spear aside and giving another gentle bow. The army taken quite aback all look at Jumjik, who merely grunts and retreats, heading towards a trap door and jumping down it.

The others crowd around and hogtie everyone, using large poles to carry the group into a large, central trap door that covers a ramp heading into the heart of the Kobold City. Any attempt to wriggle or escape or resist is met with a swift knock to the head by a weapon pommel.

It is almost a full day before the crowd dies down. Hundreds of Kobolds gather simply to look upon the Dragons, or to poke sticks into the ribs of Aar and Zadkiel. The two humanoids are tied to saltire crosses too small for their frames, their restraints improvised to make them long enough for their wrists and ankles. Small stone altars sit before each saltire, only the ones occupied having a flame dancing atop them. This flame has been lit constantly since their incarceration.

Gemscale and HexFang lie opposite the wall where Aar and Zadkiel are strapped, tied to the stone floor, their mouths bound shut with rope and leather belts. Metal rings hold the chains that bind them. Before being forced into this position, the two Dragons noted the ornate metal chest to one side, the two priestly looking Kobolds arguing in front of it.

Kobolds come and go in the place, never completely disappearing from view. It seems that the Beast Hold connects several other areas together. In cages behind the Dragons lie a few dozen riding wolves, a couple of bears and a set of covered cages that occasionally screech. The warmth simply amplifies the stench of the room, the moist air swirling from the lantern and altar heat.

It seems the crowds have died down, and now only a few guards stand idly around, some sat playing with dice in a corner. The exact number is unclear, as Aar and Zadkiel are having a hard time seeing beyond the jet of flame inches away from their faces, and Gemscale and HexFang don't have a clear view of the room. What they can hear, though, is the priests in the room still arguing. Over the general clatter of the room, only "ritual", "Hidrukk first!", and "sacrifice the survivor" being clear.

When you first arrived, you were told it may be some time before you are fed.

What do you do?

Hexfang +25XP
Gemscale +25XP
Zadkiel +25XP
Aar +25XP

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Citadel Delve pt. 39
Second Druid Door

Talison, Bennet, Adrik, Jila, Simon and Theodore are charging down the tunnel, making it most of the way to the bottom. The Dark Fey raises her elbows, the bony arms trying to lift Wudmirk's head out of Nix's reach slowly, but seeming unable to do so. It's like the head weighs a hundred pounds. Nix however effortlessly holds on to Wudmirk's head, her eyes closed, her forehead leaning in towards his.

Ero gingerly stands from his crouched position protecting Nix with his shield, instead reaching out slowly, fingers outstretched. The mumbling and humming of the creature waggling and gyrating like a puppet provid no distraction for Ero as he lightly touches Wudmirk's earlobe.

Feeling his body go hollow, Ero senses a wind within, a gale force of energy he cannot focus on. It simply fills up his skin as if to break it. The sound of the wind drowns his ears, forcing out all other voices. Straining to keep his eyes open, they begin to roll back in his head as he strains to contain this power within. As an image begins to coalesce in his mind, a face most familiar, it is instantly blanched by brilliant white light. Wudmirk's head and hair shine bright, the cold glow creating deep stretches of black shadow behind the sharp features of the Dark Fey.

The strain in him rescinding as quickly as it came, Ero looks to his left. Darrin has one hand on Nix's shoulder, a barely visible pulse moving from his hand into her. Nix leans in closer to Wudmirk's head, her face almost disappearing in the bright light. The light brightens, forcing everyone to avert their eyes. Within a couple of seconds, the light completely disappears, leaving behind just the tunnel looking far gloomier than it started.

Wudmirk's head slaps the ground and rolls towards the slope past Nix and Darrin. The Dark Fey stands still and silent, mouth agape. A strained gasp slowly squeaks from her throat before she is struck quiet once more. An arrow spears into her left leg at the same time Lorawyn, still in the form of a cat, leaps into the air and dives onto her face, drawing her claws deeply into and across the Dark Fey's pointed features. As she's leaping back down to the ground, the green-black ichor from inside of the creature begins to burn at her paws.

Screaming loudly and holding her face with her long, bony hands, the Dark Fey steps backwards towards the portal, falling backwards into it with help from Korik's outstretched leg. His face contorted into the very shape of loathing, angered at his mind being affected by this demon. The Fey sinking deeper into the puddle of fungus seems to cause a reaction, the portal shrinking in size until only a small, black tendril is left poking up from between the stone blocks of the floor. The stretching, slopping sound of the receding portal ends abruptly, the only sounds in the tunnel now being heavy breathing and the footfalls of boot on stone.

As everyone collects at the base of the tunnel slope, Theodore and Jila quickly take stock of their surroundings while Adrik and Simon look to the others to see who needs support. The area seems to be as wide as the tunnel, more than a dozen feet across. It stretches ahead a short distance, perhaps thrice the width, before ending in a concave wall. This wall, barely lit by Simon's staff, is covered in the same writings as those around the door at the entrance. Simon cannot read it, but Lorawyn and Adrik can. Adrik peers at the door in the middle of the wall; it's an empty doorway, no barrier at all. It's only just taller than Korik, circular and edged in similar swirling patterns to those outside. The writing on the wall reads "Entry only for the worthy. Those that fail the test will suffer."

What do you do?

Korik has 1 level of exhaustion, meaning he has disadvantage on all ability checks. This does not include saves or attacks.

Lorawyn has 1 level of exhaustion, meaning she has disadvantage on all ability checks. This does not include saves or attacks.

Talison has 2 levels of exhaustion, meaning he has disadvantage on all ability checks. This does not include saves or attacks. His speed is also halved.

Korik +5XP
Talison +5XP
Nix +15XP
Darrin +15XP
Lorawyn +10XP
Adrik +5XP
Ero +10XP
Theodore +10XP

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Kobold Hunt pt. 16
Capture

The air rushing past their ears, Aar and Zadkiel manage to orient themselves and spread out their arms and legs. While simply flailing from confusion, it served to slow them somewhat. The Dragons crash onto the wooden roof below, Kobolds scattering as they do to make way. While it cracks slightly, the wooden structure appears to remain intact for the most part.

The last few arrows and javelins finish their arcs and begin to fall far away, thankfully not making a return attempt on the lives of those still falling. Seeing the gold dragon sprawled on the floor, Aar and Zadkiel turn their bodies as they near the roof, trying to hit the softer scales of the young dragons cushioned by flesh beneath rather than the unforgiving rigidity of the wood below. Slamming into the roof at high speed, Zadkiel skids and hits a Kobold, knocking them down. As they tumble, Zadkiel manages to land on top and push away. The left side of his face and body are now severely scratched, a solid graze running along his cheek. He can feel some blood beginning to stick to his shirt. The air itself stings him now; the warm, claggy, almost sickly-sweet air. It's so drastically different just being within the stone walls of this temple structure. Briefly catching a glimpse, Zadkiel can see enormous Cycladic carvings on the walls, seemingly depicting a narrative. The walls continue up for at least another 100 feet. The wooden structure, and the Kobolds themselves, seem very out of place. And yet, the wood on which they stand seems to span this entire room, if such a space can be called that at this scale. Below feels hollow but sturdy, and movement can be heard and felt through the floor. There are many levels below.

With a thudd, Aar lands on Gemscale. Winded, he rolls off the large beast and collapses on the floor, clutching his sides. The smells and sounds take a while to get through to him, the pain clouding his senses. A moment passes, and Aar's attention is snapped back to reality when Potuk lands near to him, a loud crack sounding out as his leg buckles beneath him. Rolling on the wooden deck on which you find yourselves, Potuk begins crying and screaming as a crowd of Kobolds surrounds him.

Catching each other's eye, Zadkiel and Aar give a brief nod. Aar looks around and sees HexFang twitch her claw, her side heaving up and down quickly. She's alive, and in obvious pain, but she'll live. Looking back to Gemscale, Aar gives an unconscious wave to Zadkiel before pressing his hands to the gold dragon's chest. Feeling around for a heartbeat, Aar soon realises that he has no idea how dragon physiology actually works…

Dashing over to Gemscale, Zadkiel begins to speak soothingly. His tones going unheeded by the unconscious dragon, regardless the sounds are heard. Placing his hand upon Gemscale's shoulder, the man from the sky continues talking, mentioning great plains and moutain tops; all comforting things to hear. The dragon's muscles visibly relax, and his breathing becomes heavier and less laboured.

Before they're able to do any more, Zadkiel and Aar hear the barking and yapping of Kobolds beginning to approach and surround them. Aar can hear them yelling for surrender. Swiftly turning to face them, a smile on his face and giving a deep bow, Aar introduces himself. "My name is Aaron Lorenzo François Pablo Jeroen Bardino, story teller, entertainer, Dragon trainer and occasionally Dragon trader." With that, he winks at a female Kobold, who flares her nostrils and growls. It is unclear whether this is her taking offence or being bashful.
"All come! You defeated! Jumjik catch you!" A Kobold with black paint along his arms and face is pointing a spear at Aar, the rest of the army behind him taking aim and readying for any sign of resistance. It appears your surrender is being demanded.

Roll for Initiative (1d20 + Dexterity bonus). What do you do?

Gemscale heals 6HP and is technically conscious, but you can play dead if you wish. Please make a Dexterity (Performance) check to do so. This is unusual, since I'm pairing the stat with a skill commonly connected to Charisma; your proficiency in Performance still stands, but you instead add your dexterity modifier. You're controlling your body movement in a specific way. I will allow you to substitute Dexterity for Constitution, since it's also about controlled breathing and heartrate.

HexFang heals 1HP and is technically conscious, but you can play dead if you wish. Please make a Dexterity (Performance) check to do so. This is unusual, since I'm pairing the stat with a skill commonly connected to Charisma; your proficiency in Performance still stands, but you instead add your dexterity modifier. You're controlling your body movement in a specific way. I will allow you to substitute Dexterity for Constitution, since it's also about controlled breathing and heartrate.

HexFang has 1 level of exhaustion, meaning she has disadvantage on all ability checks. This does not include saves or attacks.

Hexfang +50XP
Gemscale +50XP
Zadkiel +15XP
Aar +15XP

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Citadel Delve pt. 38
Tangled Weave

The tunnel echoes with the solid footfalls of the party heading down the slope, the thudds becoming slaps as the thin layer of moisture begins to become substantial. Talison reaches a point beyond halfway down the tunnel, launching another bolt into the Dark Fey which seems to go mostly unnoticed, her attention seeming wrapped in lowering her tone to a mumble, her dancing reduced as her face begins to move in towards the back of Wudmirk's head. The bolt sits in her shoulder for a moment before dripping down and clattering to the floor with a hiss as the green ooze from within her strikes the ground.

A small cat scampers by Talison's feet, making ground far faster than he can, almost in mockery of his slow progress. Just as he's about to utter another curse, he is passed by Bennet, Simon, Jila and a strange new person, a human by the looks of him. Looking back, Talison can see Adrik moving briskly, but still lagging behind the group. A small solace.

Nix grips the sides of Wudmirk's head, her mind filling with flashes, sights, sounds and smells, textures she's never felt. These were not from her, but from Wudmirk. It seems that in all the corruption and change this creature has done to him, he finds his spirit trapped. Confused, his spirit is reacting and throwing out what he remembers of life. Darrin catches glimpses, and manages to distract both the spirit and the bursts that fill his vision with the cold, black eyes of the Dark Fey. Every time he opens his eyes to check, she seems closer, but very much attendent to her totem.

Pushing her way through, Nix focuses on the tangle she sees in his head. It's foreign, alien. She manages to pluck at a strand and pull, the unwinding rendering her knees weak and sending her head spinning. The world inside her mind and the world outside seem to mix. Glancing briefly beyond the head, Nix sees the Fey creeping closer, her nose beginning to press into Wudmirk's wet and matted hair.

The air begins to settle, the reeking stench of fish and stale bread giving way to a more musty, leathery scent. Ero, watching this strange staring contest between Nix, a dead man, the back of his head and a giantess, notes the chill returning; the lack of recent magical fire seems to be returning the room to a natural cool gloom.

Roll for Initiative (1d20 + Dexterity Bonus). What do you do?

Only 1 more Arcana check to succeed.

Ero, please make a Wisdom saving throw against Fear.
Nix, please make a Wisdom saving throw against Fear.
Darrin, please make a Wisdom saving throw against Fear.

Korik is frightened. He can move away from the Dark Fey up the corridor, or make attacks at disadvantage.

Korik has 1 level of exhaustion, meaning he has disadvantage on all ability checks. This does not include saves or attacks.

Lorawyn has 1 level of exhaustion, meaning she has disadvantage on all ability checks. This does not include saves or attacks.

Talison has 2 levels of exhaustion, meaning he has disadvantage on all ability checks. This does not include saves or attacks. His speed is also halved.

Korik +5XP
Talison +10XP
Nix +15XP
Darrin +15XP
Lorawyn +5XP
Adrik +5XP
Ero +10XP
Theodore +10XP

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Kobold Hunt pt. 15
Fall from grace

Aar clings to dragonscale as he pulls out his drum, sitting atop his roost as he begins his song rhythm. Gemscale, HexFang and Zadkiel briefly share a dialogue establishing who wants to eat whom and who can be trusted. While it is never made terribly clear, given the abduction of Zadkiel by a strange dragon, Gemscale assures Zadkiel will not be harmed by him.

As they begin to circle the gigantic room, looking for a safe place to land, more Kobolds take to the roof. More than the hundred previously, Kobolds appear to be streaming onto the roofs armed with shortbows and javelins. As the cries of "Hail Potuk" from the party ring off the walls, and Aar's song begins to take to the winds, a singular bark from below booms through the rest of the noise: "LOOSE!"

The town below becomes almost a black carpet of arrowfire and thrown javelins, filling the space and making it almost impossible to dodge. The Dragons HexFang and Gemscale try as much as they can, dodging arrow after arrow, wheeling through the air trying to find a safe way through. Alas, the force of the blows and the scope of the missile fire prove too much for the Dragons. As HexFang twirls to let a javelin fly by her wing, an arrow manages to strike between her scales; her faltering allows another to find her hide, and she succumbs to the pain of the wounds. As darkness claims her, she begins to fall.

Gemscale sees HexFang begin to drop through the sky, her wings not beating at all. Zadkiel takes a moment to realise, and throws his arms up in desperation as he is hurtled to the ground at great speed while caught in the clutches of an unconscious Dragon. While distracted by this sight, as Gemscale is about to dive after her, he is struck in the neck by a javelin. Immediately, he follows HexFang into the dark void, his body falling limp.

Potuk and Aar begin to freefall, their mounts having plunged into the sleep of death.
"POTUK NOT A PRINCE! POTUK NOT A PRINCE!" he cries, covering his eyes and screaming at the top of his lungs as he nears the buildings below.

Roll for Initiative (1d20 + Dexterity bonus). What do you do?

Gemscale takes 45 Hit Points of Damage. You are unconscious and need to make a Death Saving Throw (1d20, no bonuses).

HexFang takes 48 Hit Points of Damage. You are unconscious and need to make a Death Saving Throw (1d20, no bonuses).

Aar takes 2 Hit Points of Damage.

Zadkiel takes 2 Hit Points of Damage.

Could Aar and Zadkiel please make Constitution saving throws against impact damage. I will allow advantage on this is you manage to succeed at a DC 15 Dexterity (Acrobatics) check to grab a Dragon and make them land first.

HexFang has 1 level of exhaustion, meaning she has disadvantage on all ability checks. This does not include saves or attacks.

Hexfang +5XP
Gemscale +10XP
Zadkiel +5XP
Aar +10XP

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Kobold Hunt pt. 14
A Bad Feeling

With the Kobold horde frozen with indecision a few hundred feet from him, Zadkiel leans forward in an attempt to boost his intimidating presence, showing no fear and an eagerness to fight. The Kobolds flinch, and then turn to run back to the safety of their temple walls. As they speed away, Zadkiel notices the sheer scale of the temple; at least fifty Kobolds could stand upon each other's shoulders and still not reach the height of the temple walls.

Before he has a moment further to contemplate this strange scale, a scaly talon grabs him under his arms and pulls him skyward. The green armoured foot looks to be attached to a Dragon, just larger than a horse in terms of bulk.

In the air alongside he also sees a gold-scaled Dragon, and between the two of them they also carry another two: a Kobold and an Elfblood man. Zadkiel finds himself carried quickly towards the temple, where these Kobolds approached from. Were these Dragons working for them? Was he to now be tortured or killed in the middle of this settlement? He was quickly approaching what looks to be the town centre…

As Gemscale and HexFang fly up and over the temple, they move towards the room where the town mostly resides, only slightly spilling out into one corridor before it peters out into thin trailing tunnels and nothing more. The architecture seems unfamiliar and haphazard. Potuk tries to share what he knows, but claims to be unsure because of the current frame of reference; he's never seen it from above before and only knows where things are by walking. The town from above appears to be a single gigantic wooden fortress, with some taller portions the only evidence of there being separate buildings within the structure.

It's not long before the group becomes aware of where the beast cages are, however: ShadowFlame can be heard roaring, and through small gaps in the woodwork a rush of people can be seen heading towards this noise. The aerial incursion does not go unnoticed, however. Clambering atop the roofs of the large wooden structure are dozens of Kobolds, armed and armoured and having spotted the two Dragons flying above their main stronghold in broad daylight.

Roll for Initiative (1d20 + Dexterity bonus). What do you do?

HexFang has 1 level of exhaustion, meaning she has disadvantage on all ability checks. This does not include saves or attacks.

Hexfang +10XP
Gemscale +5XP
Zadkiel +5XP
Aar +5XP

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Citadel Delve pt. 37
A third of the way

As the Meenlock finally pushes its way into the portal, Simon and Jila lead the party at the top of the tunnel back down to help the others with the Dark Fey creature. Bennet, holding his side as he nurses the wound the beast gave him, gives Theodore a quick nod of approval, the newcomer joining the gang as they descend. Talison, seeing the Meenlock climb out of sight and Jila heading back down the tunnel, concludes that the Meenlock must have escaped or been killed. Which means-

Talison stops, raising his head and whispering a curse to the Taihun. His breathing laboured and his legs tired, he turns back to the Dark Fey at the bottom of the tunnel descent and makes his way back down, wary of the rapid approach of a strange Human, the Dwarf (with new feline companion in tow), the Cleric, the Halfling and Jila. Drawing his crossbow up again, desperate to make his efforts and energies useful despite his slow advance, Talison looses a bolt at Wudmirk's head, hoping to disarm the creature of her totem.

Ero and Korik move to harry the wiry giantess, her greasy hair hanging down to nearly the floor. Blades flashing in the approaching light from Simon's staff, Ero strikes at her wrists and torso, trying to draw her attention to him as much as possible. As Darrin and Nix draw close, a strong shiver runs up their spines; the same force that niggles at Ero and Korik's minds now presses at theirs. Korik, having succumbed to this force, stands dumbfounded and terrified, his mouth agape, although he manages to flick his sword forward in what seems to be an attempt to make the scary lady go away.

Nix's eyes follow Wudmirk's head, a strong swallow and a brief sniff at her own sleeve serve to bolster her nerves against the stench and the sight. As the creature stamps and wobbles her hips and head, she sways her totem to and fro, pulling at the eyes and cheeks. Leaping up a whole foot and stretching to her full length, Nix manages to grab a hold of the head, immediately drawing it down to her and placing her own forehead close to Wudmirk's. Staring intensely into his dead and blooshot eyes, Nix forced her magical energies along her arms and into his head, the pulses of which feeling as though they might press too hard and break the skull. Darrin grabs the Fey's wrist with one hand, a flash of uncontrolled anger flaring from his eyes towards the fell woman, and with his other hand touches Nix's shoulder. He closes his eyes slowly, sending his own force of will into his friend to help her. More of a prayer, almost, than any actual manipulation of forces; at least from Darrin's point of view.

He does slowly turn to look up the slope of the tunnel when a crossbow bolt flies into Wudmirk's head, narrowly missing Nix, though.

Roll for Initiative (1d20 + Dexterity Bonus). What do you do?

Ero, please make a Wisdom saving throw against Fear.
Korik, please make a Wisdom saving throw against Fear.
Nix, please make a Wisdom saving throw against Fear.
Darrin, please make a Wisdom saving throw against Fear.

Korik has 1 level of exhaustion, meaning he has disadvantage on all ability checks. This does not include saves or attacks.

Lorawyn has 1 level of exhaustion, meaning she has disadvantage on all ability checks. This does not include saves or attacks.

Talison has 2 levels of exhaustion, meaning he has disadvantage on all ability checks. This does not include saves or attacks. His speed is also halved.

Korik +5XP
Talison +10XP
Nix +15XP
Darrin +15XP
Lorawyn +5XP
Adrik +5XP
Ero +10XP
Theodore +10XP

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