Hoard of the Dragon Queen Journal Pt III

Today, the heroes continue their quest after the events of Greenest. The party tracks the cultists across the Green Fields, on their way to find the cultists' camp. Read the previous entries by checking out the index page here: .

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From the Journal of Danaeron:
For the first time in many days I'm in my element. Tracking prey across woods and plains. They were so many that it isn't difficult. I count over a hundred. Men and kobold and one barefoot traveler. I stay a few yards ahead of our party. I come back to relay information. I try to bring Ennis with me while scouting. I want her to know how to track and I would like some time to just speak with her. I make a few attempts to talk. I'm not even being quiet with my steps as it takes all of my concentration to find the words. She half smiles and I feel it must be an invitation to keep talking but she doesn't respond and walks on ahead. Ahead I see a campfire. Small but noticeable in the distance.


We decide to sneak up on them. Plenty of hills and rocks to hide behind. Around a fire there are several cultists but their armor and weapons are in a pile some feet away. Across the camp are more of the kobolds. This shouldn't be difficult. It's like hunting boar. Two will flank them and the others drive up the middle. Sallos says he will take care of the cultist so I shoot from far on the road to block any retreat. Ennis and Nithbis should have no problem pushing the middle and taking out any stragglers. Sallos disappears into the bushes on the far side of camp. I move across rocks bow ready. I fire a shot and fell a kobold where he stands and move to cut them off. They are surprised and then dash me. Out of the corner of my eye I see a cultist drop. They run to their armor and weapons but I'm busy with a swarm of kobolds. Any second Ennis and Nithbis should come up the middle. An arrow comes from behind me and a Kobold drops. Perhaps they are coming behind me. So many little swords I can't stop them all. I fell more of these little dragon dogs but I feel steel dig into my stomach and legs and I feel the now familiar feeling of my warm blood staining my clothes. My eyes are drawn to a bolt of blue ice hurtling towards the cultist from the rocks where I left Nithbis and Ennis. I hear the words of Nithbis. A cultist is obliterated in a hail of ice but Sallos cries out in pain. Is she mad? Another dead kobold and more stabs to myself. Sallos is running across the camp, scimitars drawn. His eyes intent on this swarm around me. I see the cultist behind him but can't call out before he is stabbed and falls. A cloud of fog surrounds him out of nowhere. I hear the sounds of swords clashing and screams of pain. Two swords dig into my side and then the world is dark.


More after the cut!

The river again. Is this my fate? Am I to die today? I close my eyes and open them again to daylight and pain. The taste of berries in my mouth. My companions standing over me. My body feels electric and filled with poison as I cure my wounds with song and touch. This is the third time I've nearly joined the oak in the past day. I feel like the hate that has escaped the wolf. I focus on tracking and try to be alert but my mind is racing and we aren't moving fast enough. The party barely speaks and when they do they sound like nothing to me. We come upon a ravine. A good place for an ambush. Sallos suggests we put on the stolen cultist’s robes and pretend to be part of the cult. A captured cultist informed us of a rear guard before we left the camp. Though I barely listened while I searched the camp. I'm not good with disguise. I can blend into the forest and go unseen, but walking in daylight in bright robes has me uncomfortable. I can't focus on being quiet and only how to act like ones who live in the world.


We try to climb the ravine and I hold the rope as Sallos and Ennis climb. A voice from behind calls us to attention. We all freeze. A warrior in fine black armor asks what we are doing. Everyone else is in disguise but mine has fallen open and out as I held the rope. I'm exposed. Sallos tries to deceive them, but I see movement in the bushes. He asks us to lay our weapons down. There is no time. I quiver and fire an arrow. It shoots true and should have dropped him where he stood. He laughs. Sallos moves to the bushes and I hear fighting. Nithbis fires another bolt of ice. Hits him directly. He is seriously wounded but maintains his pace and his laugh. Coming to me as I fire another arrow. Still he laughs. Ennis fires from above and I watch the arrow sink into his skull. Nithbis and Sallos fight side by side and kill the remaining guard.


We decide to take a long rest. I must sleep. I must get this death out of my head. Donning the armor
Sallos leads us to the camp as we scout it. A map from the captive at the camp shows us two guard towers which we can see. A center spot must mark the purple wearer and an X at the back of the canyon must be those dragon eggs. We discuss what to do.


As much as I would like to scout above we can't afford to be split up. I will need to follow the lead of my companions to sneak into this camp. I trust Sallos and his silver tongue. Ennis is young but used to being a high elf and Nithbis has many strange charms. Ennis speaks of Analor and Nithbis dismisses her. I ask her why a Druid would insult he gods and she says she knows the ground under her feet and many other things I don't understand and then winks at me. I blush and I'm confused. Sallos laughs and claps my back and tells me it is good I'm handsome. My scars are horrendous and it takes me a moment to get the joke, but I laugh. Humans are a funny people. Ennis begins to pray and I pray with her. Nithbis and Sallos discuss something in whispers and she says she will be unseen as we enter. Ennis is uncomfortable. I'm curious to see what she can do.


Tonight we enter the camp. Rillafane protect me and these foreign ways.



ATTENTION: RORIK HORSHAN,  Town of Goldenleaf
My dearest and oldest friend,
By the nine hells, I still live and breathe. I have much to tell you when I have more time (and ink). To the point: I’ve found myself in the middle of an odd mix between an assignment and an escape. My life is at the mercy of the small group I travel with daily, as we both know I'm not much of a fighter (though You'd be pleased to know I've been less careless with my whip). I can't even wrap my horns around what is happening here. Dragons, cultists, robes, decoys, mind games. Again, I'll explain more later. Despite all of this outer stimulation and the promise of a puzzle to piece together, my Mind can't escape the question. The question. Your letter rests on my hip near my  essentials; food, quill, water. I do not have any answers yet.


-Nith


Dania, I miss you but Sallos soldiers on.  These companions are good fighters but they all seem conflicted or have their own agenda.  Sallos likes or at least respects them but Sallos misses his crew and his ship.  There Sallos knew where his mates stood and knew they would have his back.  But Sallos is not sure about his current companions. The elf Danaeron is quiet and seems conflicted but never backs down from action, even if Sallos wants him too.  Sallos respects that but fears his brash actions may cause problems later.  His companion, the Priest of Naralis Analor, seems hesitant about jumping into battle but when she does her blade, bow, and spells are all formidable but she is driven by blind faith to her god.  Sallos never trusts anyone who cannot think on their own but so far she has not given Sallos any reason not to trust her, in fact it was her faith and the power of her god that brought Sallos back from the brink of death.  Nithbis….oh Nithbis...this hellspawn is as brash and chaotic as the abyssal planes that her lineage suggests.  Sallos will have to keep an eye on this one.  She did confide in Sallos about her ability to shapechange into rat but that may be just a ploy to gain Sallos’s confidence.  We will see and Sallos will not turn his back on this one or at least say out of her line of fire because she cares not if allies are in her way and Sallos has already felt sting of her spells.  Sallos respects that drive to slay one's enemies but Sallos might accidentally lop her tail off if she does it again.  I dream of you every night my love and I may see you sooner than expected.  Sallos...out!!!  *scimitar drop*
From https://parsantium.wordpress.com

From the Journal of Ennis:
I pray the gods give my sword light and bless my bow, may they stop those who wish us harm. Please bless the partners I travel with, I know you have brought us together for a reason and I will always protect them. I am thankful for the blessings bestowed upon me and for the teachings of the priests who have taught me not to use my spells in vein. With your guidance I vow to become stronger to protect my companions from evil. I will no longer hold back.

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