Night of the Dragon
As told by Ziarra Moonbright, Dark Bard of the Keep
’twas a cold and rainy day in Restwell Keep as I sat in the common room of the inn finishing the poor tasting ale after having a lunch meal consisting of overcooked lamb and potato soup. I suppose I should not be too hard on the inn keep for the standard of fair, as he and his family lay burned in the ash of the inn now, and with the considerable regularity of orcish raiders on the outlying farms and poor crop yields any food without the taste of molds is a welcome meal indeed.
As the ale began settling and I began to tune my lute for an afternoon song in the distance I heard the distinct sound of a trebuchet launching its bundle of death followed shortly by the distinct sounds of alarm beginning to spread through the keep.
Gathering my belongings I headed for the door to assess the situation. Pitched battles were already beginning within the walls and it was surely the work of insiders as the gates stood open and the enemy was flooding in swiftly killing any in their way. I ducked into the alleyway leading to the inner keep hopeful to find more capable guards there as I would not be able to take an army alone. Perhaps the so-clad “Lord” of Restwell Keep, the Paladin Drysdale would be a capable leader in defending the keep he took. I would soon find out if he would be capable of having a line or two in my great story.
Rounding the last ally corner I came face to face with three invaders savaging a poor woman whilst her son watched in horror. The attackers were unaware that the laughter was the last thing they would ever hear… Darkness crept back into me as I advanced upon them shooting the first in the throat and swiftly reloading. The second had not realized his friend was dead before my bolt entered his temple driving him to the ground with a loud thud. The last one stood off his victim, drew his sword and began to advance, not realizing that I was not a small, blonde woman, and that his friends had in fact died at the tip of Drow bolts. Years of living at the hands of my mother had taught me much of how easy it was to ensnare and destroy men, and this poor soul advanced to his death never swing his sword or knowing how as he was almost upon me how I has suddenly produced a blade from thin air and drove it through is throat.
After returning my blade to magical space I headed on to the keep with the woman and her child. As we entered the inner keep the last of the guards entering behind us the gates closed. For most of the afternoon the trebuchet attempted to knock down the walls and rained a steady flow of fire within. As dusk styled in an unnatural fog began to take hold and the intensity of the assault increased when suddenly, with a tremendous shaking, the western tower began to crumble in upon itself. Brought down by kobold diggers and with the sudden explosion of DRAGON!
‘Twas then, I was not entirely sure I would have the chance to write any more of my story. I exited the stone structure I was in and there in the courtyard was Drysdale surrounded by but a few remaining defenders whom I had seen at the inn for the past few evenings. Hearing the loud roar and challenge of the dragon to Drysdale and his taunt for it to come and face him I knew the time was now to act. The mighty beast landed in front of Drysdale preparing to hew him in twain with one mighty bite when on a-sudden he struck with his shield stunning the mighty beast. His companions then struck with a fury driving it into a crevasse within the keep floor. Running forward I used some powerful magic’s and let loose a cursed bolt from my crossbow causing all of Drysdale’s attacks to be more likely to find the weakness between the beasts scales.
Within a moment I witnessed the most amazing sight… As behold, a armor clad warrior kept into the crevasse after the dragon attempting to land on the thrashing beasts back cutting through its side as he fell 20 feet to the bottom of the hole risking being shredded by the dragons claws. Shortly after Drysdale was to follow this mad warrior into the pitched battle. Leaping from the edge, Lord Drysdale became the embodiment of his belief at last, landing on the back of the dragon as his mighty sword beat into the creature, driving it into the ground.
All appeared going our way, when on a-sudden, from the keep walls dropped untold numbers of Gray Company invaders hoping to take advantage of the moment and bring down the defenders for good. Seizing the moment Rolen the Green bounded up the wall, arrows flying at the enemy, slaying them one after the other holding them back with his mighty bow, allowing Brandis and I to relocate to the crevasse edge to provide support to those below.
Mighty blows flew both upon and from the dragon when at last, the mighty beast freed itself from the hole and flew to the edge with lighting speed. With a loud roar the dragon spit its acid in all directions and only by a hairs breath did our company escape its end. I was not so lucky. The pain bit hard into me as I took the full force of the acid and it took all my powers with healing to overcome the damage being generated by my boiling skin.
Assuming I had been destroyed, the dragon turned its focus to the two men, Aerix the Dragonrider and Lord Drysdale, who had been thrown down in the pit. Recalling my time spent in the company of the elves of the light I took careful aim and let loose my response to the dragons breath. Using the powers of the Feywild my bolt struck true into the beasts a chest opening a massive river of blood and the burst of blood was turned into power to bring Lord Drysdale and Aerix to appear on either side of the great wyrm. Stunned by the sudden change, the dragon was once again the victim of mighty blows and sharp steel of the two warriors. With a torn wing, open wounds spewing blood from its head, chest and abdomen, its wings slashed and burned, the great beast, knowing its death was upon it, used its last ounce of strength to launch itself into the air and fly eastward over the keep walls and toward its mountain lair.
With the dragon gone the remains of the Gray Company froze in their tracks. The day, which they had thought was theirs, had taken a sudden turn for the worse, as Lord Drysdale, Aerix the Dragonrider, Rolen the Green, Brandis the Sturdy, and I, Lady Ziarra the Bard, gathered together to visit our fury and vengeance upon them. Slaying them to the last forever ending the threat they posed to the residents of the mighty Restwell Keep.
Greyhawk (Against the Giants/Tyranny of Dragons)
Night of the Dragon
Night of the Dragon