Game log of a ToEE adventure that somehow turned into an Expedition to the Barrier Peaks. You can find the original google doc here.
Rogues Gallery – “General Puggin’s Moribund of Mercenaries”*
- The Rogue – Giselle der Gauner the Soulknife due to a mutation granting her telekinetic powers (character #2, previous character was Mirka the Rogue – Deceased)
- The Monk – Augusta “Tof” Bamberger and her henchmen Elmo the Ranger and pet pug General Puggins.
- The Druid – Lilie the Elf and her henchmen Wolfram and animal companion Fuyuko, the white wolf.
- The Knight – Lintelfaden Toshcobble, squire of Rufus the Bold.
- The Fighter – Fencil the Android (brain tape swap) (Character #2, previous character was a cleric – Deceased) and his (henchmen Zof the Jarhead Wizard – Deceased).
- The Ranger – Bustov Daman and his animal companion, The Mou-Mou Bird (bloodthirsty sparrow).
- The Cleric – Lorenz Brandt (character #2), the scribe, Mouthpiece of the Golden Goddess (human cleric of UNITY).
*Due to a transcription error by the Verbobonc mercenary company registrar, “Merry” become “Moribund.”
Session 45 Recap
Thanks to Vanifer’s death, the air temple was mostly cleared out save a few cultists here and there going about their daily tasks. Seeing the party pass by, they didn’t even try to attack, running in fear, knowing that battle assured their swift demise to their strange and deadly weapons. The more they watched from the shadows, trying to get as much information for Marlos in the greater temple as possible. Not like there was much to get other than that the party ran off a single brain cell outside of combat.
“Gisella!” Augusta cried, raising a bridle over her head. “The next prophet we see, we will initiate plan ‘Get Horsed!’”
“Plan what?” she laughed.
“You will put this on the enemy and they will turn into a horse!” She shuffled through her bag, pulled out three ships-in-a-bottle, a jar of leeches, and a Nine-lives Stealer except as a dagger. “Hmm, Elmo! You will be in charge of operation ‘Get Leeched!’”
“Can you go through your countless magic items when you’re not on my head?” Elmo sighed. “Last thing I need is for you to drop a bomb on me.”
“Don’t worry.” She took out a grenade and balanced it precariously on the jar of leeches. “I’m too careful for that to ever happen.”
Lorenz performed a quick maintenance check on his weapons while leisurely riding on Lintelfaden’s back. “The barrel is clean, power is charged… Immaculate gold sheen; see? This is the kind of stuff you get from believing in UNITY. You guys better have not accepted any of Lolth’s ‘blessings’ after we took down the prophet.”
Lilie transformed into a spider and hid behind Fensal who was climbing upside down on the roof. “Nope, never would do that,” she denied.
“We are pure and blameless,” the android agreed.
Before Lorenz could preach about how pure gold was leagues better than webs, Augusta clapped her hands excitedly and used Elmo’s face as a kick pad, launching off as she saw familiar faces greet them down the hall. Three wax trolls with small candles on their heads marched towards them, patrolling the halls.
“My wax trolls!” she laughed. “It’s Brilliam, Brent and Bryan! They’re so happy to see me!”
“I don’t think that’s it,” Elmo sighed, used to his mistress’ randomness now.
They roared and brandished their weapons, charging towards Augusta.
“See? They’ve missed me this whole time!” She barely dodged the razor sharp blade of a double axe, flying over her head and crashing against the wall. “Guys, they don’t like me!”
“Get back!” Bustov ordered and Elmo quickly yanked the monk off her feet and out of the way.
Lorenz charged Badaboom with radiant energy and his eyes glowed bright white. “Light them up!”
Six missiles of pure light spiraled towards the trolls as a freezing arrow intertwined with them, creating a blinding explosion that shook the cavern. The light refracted off the frost and a frigid wind almost knocked the party to their feet.
Even after that, the trolls weren’t stopped, charging through and regenerating at an alarming rate.
Lilie created a bead of fire in her palm and tossed it at the enemy, knowing full well the weakness of trolls. It grew in size until it completely engulfed the opposition and melted the sheet of ice climbing along the walls.
“They’re still coming!” Gisella warned, leaping over a slash and escaping with her telekinesis. “The trolls’ skin are marked with the symbol of the fire cult, that’s not going to work on them!”
The trolls charged headfirst into combat and slammed into the front ranks, confident their regeneration couldn’t be stopped. Wolfram and Elmo hardly flinched from the attack but the enemy ignored their attacks as well. Locked in a stalemate, they were forced on the defensive, relying on the party to deal with the regeneration.
“Where’s a wizard when you need one?” Lorenz sighed, firing a laser at the wax trolls. “Do you have any spells for this, Lilie?”
Her fingertips charged with lightning but there was no way to get a clear shot off in the tight corridor. “Maybe, but I’ll hit everyone else if I try to use a big spell.”
The only way to stop their regeneration would be to use acid to melt the flesh without heat, even the laser swords from Luna Castellum weren’t sealing the cuts and were completely overwhelmed by the regeneration. It wasn’t natural, their healing abilities far surpassed that of any regular trolls; then again, they created their bodies and minds from a single candle.
Is this going to work? Fensal wondered, running along the walls thanks to Lolth’s blessing. Well, no point in mulling it over!
He activated the laser sword but its beam was a sickly green and thick liquid began to drop from his hand. Swinging with all his might, he severed one of the troll’s arms and it screamed in pain. Steam rose from the wound and the enemy staggered back, afraid of the android.
“Juiblex’s blessing,” Lorenz scoffed, feeling disdain against the demon lord. “Acid… Fensal really has a lot of ‘blessings’ from demons.”
“Bustov, aim true!” Fensal cried and clapped his hands, creating a perfect sightline for the ranger.
The arrow of ice struck the wounded troll despite the tight quarters, guided towards its target and enhanced. Piercing through the heart, the wax froze over and the acid finished the job; one down, two to go, much to Augusta’s sadness.
“All you had to do was listen to me,” she sighed, knocking one down to its knees. “Must be a rebellious phase.” She cut a piece of the wax off with a blade and tossed it in one of her many vials with random monster parts. “Elmo! Gene-splice yourself with this!”
“I’m not becoming a wax troll!” he snapped.
The prone troll was quickly targeted by the frontline and was locked in place by blades and axes, unable to avoid a powerful blow from Fensal. Supercharged thanks to Lorenz, his speed and power was amplified to a whole new level and he sliced straight through armour, flesh, and bone. As if it wasn’t enough, he blew its head off with a point-blank cannon shot, ensuring there would be no further regeneration.
“Wait to kill the last one,” Gisella said, balancing in the air on her daggers. “Let’s follow it to the greater temple.”
As expected, the final enemy was already on the run, perhaps to call reinforcements or to just escape with his life. Chasing him was easy and no one came to support him, not when seeing the party sprint after him. Led right to a hole in the ground, they saw it leap into the abyss, using the bones of whatever creature that created the tunnel to descend descended.
“Nice, straight to the entrance,” Lorenz laughed. “You want me to fire rockets into the pit?”
“No!” Augusta snapped. “We can just go down to the greater temple now and ignore Bryan.”
“Slight issue, guys,” Lintelfaden interrupted, looking down the tunnel. “Do you guys have any idea… how I’m going to get down?”
“Is your robot body good for anything outside of combat?” Gisella cursed, trying to gently bring Lintelfaden down. For once, her telekinesis was strained by the weight of the target. “Wow, you’re really heavy too.”
“It makes for a free ride,” Lorenz explained, climbing onto the knight’s back. “Though your back is äs uncomfortable as ever.”
“Why are you complaining on my back?” Lintelfaden sighed. “Get off and walk.”
“You won’t get healing then.”
The greater temple was more like a maze than any other temple, filled with dozens of rooms and cave passages leading to distinct areas representing the four elements. A cavern of luminescent crystals was soon followed by a pit of lava surrounded by trolls and imps bathing in the flames. Pitch black, hot, and damp, the party ventured forth through the caves, wary of any assassins lurking in the shadows or a beast beneath the earth.
The atmosphere of the Greater Ttemple was unsettling, nothing like any of the other temples they had seen. Aside from very specific rooms, it was empty and void of life, not even a bit of plant life could be seen anywhere. Room after room, they hardly saw anyone or anything, and they never came across human cultists. The trolls they did meet seemed to be mourning about something but their speech was unintelligible aside from a few key words.
Out of everything, the words ‘water’ and ‘Olhydra’ stood out among their slurred language.
“It is getting damper as we go,” Augusta realised. “We really did end up having to deal with the water temple in the end.”
“Tch, I hate this,” Lintelfaden cursed, trodding over thick mud. “Lareth told us about the inner rooms and the elemental nodes; we must be getting closer if the caverns are changing like this.”
“What about Marlos?” Gisella wondered. “Do we… have to deal with two elemental princes together.”
Fensal shivered at the thought. “I hope not. Then again, poisonous gasses and radiation or a titan of water; I don’t know which one I’d prefer.”
Aki cocked her head to one side, sliding her hand across a small vine growing across the ground. “Life…? There’s a garden nearby…”
“A garden?” Bustov repeated.
“Yes, I can sense it. It’s not far from here.”
Believe it or not, a little further into the temple revealed a large cavern filled with all kinds of fungus. The multicolored caps created a sort of rainbow yet the eerie lightning gave it a sort of creepy beauty. An uncomfortable chill ran up their spines as they were lured into the garden and the cloud spores surrounded them like mist, stinging their eyes and burning their lungs. The pain forced most of them back, refusing to investigate the room any longer, but those completely ensnared by the spell within the spores could not resist.
“Hey!” Bustov snapped. “Let’s just leave it be!”
Lorenz, Gisella and Lintelfaden ignored the cries and pushed deeper into the fungus grove.
Can you hear me? A female voice whispered, coaxing them further in. Come closer… I need you to help me.
They couldn’t speak and stood there dazed while the soft voice became louder and louder.
It isn’t much, I’m just a little trapped, that’s all. Could you help me?
Nodding in agreement without really understanding her words, she giggled and the spores began to cling to their bodies.
That’s wonderful…! I just need an itty-bitty favour from you strong heroes. You can kill Marlos and Gar, right? They shouldn’t be a problem for people like you… Please, take their weapons… Her voice grew deep and out of character as the spores began to whip around them in a mini-tornado. Smash them on the altar of the Elder Elemental God…! Break them all and set me free!
And, as if nothing ever happened, her voice began to fade away, once again soft and quiet. I know you can do it, I’ll be counting on you.
Lilie leaned on Wolfram and began to charge electricity between her fingers. “Hmm, they haven’t come back for 3 whole minutes.”
“Should we presume they are dead?” Bustov chuckled.
“Most certainly! Alright, let’s destroy this infested room!”
“Um, Lintelfaden is a robot,” Aki interrupted. “Wouldn’t the lightning shut him down?”
“Eh, you don’t win them all-”
The three party members returned from the cloud of spores unharmed before she could fire the lightning bolt, much to her disappointment. From the few questions that were asked of Gisella, Lorenz, and Lintelfaden, nothing had happened inside the fungus garden. They went in, their memories blanked out, and then they were free to leave. But the party was foolish… most weren’t, at least. From the way the three victims dazedly wandered in, either they honestly didn’t know what changed or they were forced to keep quiet.
“Nothing at all?” Elmo asked. “And you weren’t attacked either?”
“Nothing,” Lorenz repeated. “We went in and were forced back by the spores.”
“Suspicious,” Bustov muttered. “Lilie, want to murder jump them in their sleep?”
She nodded her head in agreement. “Ah, yes, what a great plan.”
“A brilliant plan.”
“A thinking man’s plan.”
“Hey! You two!” Augusta called out. The party had already left them behind while they schemed. “Let’s get a move on!”
Hours passed and they had to rest in a quiet room, not willing to force themselves to march in enemy territory. Judging from what they had seen, the likelihood of their rest being interrupted was nil and anything that did arrive could be promptly dealt with. But the last thing they wanted to do was to stumble across the elemental nodes weak and tired where they were sure the prophets were waiting for them. Taking a much needed break, Lorenz set up security spells to protect them while the party planned their attack.
If the Prince of Evil Elemental Earth Ogremoch was summoned, they were much more confident in their ability to at least fight and survive against him. It wouldn’t be a pretty fight, they were nothing but flies trying to topple a mountain, but his poison could be countered by a few of the party’s android and cyborg body while Lorenz could cure any radiation thanks to UNITY’s blessing. And they never planned to take his hits head-on, knowing a single strike could crush them.
But if the Princess of Evil Elemental Water Olhydra was summoned, the odds were against them before they even reached the water node. They did not have enough magic to enhance the entire party underwater and had to funnel their power into select members, hoping they could put the weight of the team on their shoulders. An underwater fight was unavoidable at that point and they could not have a repeat of their attempts to attack the water temple; retreating was out of the picture.
“So that’s what we’re going with?” Augusta asked. “It could work.”
“We’re putting all of our eggs in one basket but we’ve got no other choice,” Elmo explained. “It’s do or die and we don’t have the resources to buff our whole team.”
Lintelfaden flexed his iron knuckles and stretched. “Leave it to us! As long as you keep supporting us from behind we can get this done!”
“I’m focusing all of my healing into Lintelfaden,” Lorenz said. “I’m the only one who can heal him. I’ll need Lilie and Aki to help out the rest of the team.”
Fensal got up and stretched, running a quick diagnostics check on himself. “I’m good to go, we should keep pushing on.”
The inner sanctum wasn’t far from where they rested. Continuing onwards through a few more winding passages and caves, it suddenly led to a hallway lined with smooth stones, held up by pillars. From here on, symbols of the elemental cults lined the walls and they hummed with light, periodically flashing in time. As they grew closer to their target, the symbols began to morph into that of the god they served; the Elder Elemental Eye.
The hallway led them on into an massive, open room like that of a cathedral. Four titanic states lined the wall at the back, each representing one of the four elements while a massive dull eye was engraved into the wall above them. The ground was covered in mosaic-like decorations depicting devout followers and heretics rushing blindly towards their elemental prince, certain that their leader could create another elemental plane for them. It even continued up the walls and all the way up above where another strange elemental was depicted; a pillar of every element combined, destroying everything in its path.
“Beautiful, isn’t it?” Marlos asked, gazing up at the art. He sat calmly in the centre of the room beside an altar. “The Elder Elemental Eye could have changed everything… But you meddled in affairs that didn’t concern you.” He pulled himself to his feet with a black staff and unchained Ironfang from his belt. “It’s over for you now, come and meet your end with dignity, and I’ll make it quick.”
“We didn’t come all this way just to die,” Gisella calmly replied.
“Words are weak, let’s hear your skill talk!” A velvet curtain surrounded him at his calling, completely concealing him on the altar. “Proxy of the Elder Elemental Eye! Come forth and crush them all!”
The party wasted no time to charge into combat and prevent any plan Marlos had up his sleeve but a massive purple-black octopus like creature fell from the roof landing with a nauseating squish . Landing with a crash that shook the room, it protected the prophet from anyone trying to get close, lashing out with its tentacles that spanned the entire room. Hundreds of eyes opened over its body, glowing different colors akin to the four elements.
Lorenz’s arm charged with electricity and he slammed Bustov, supercharging his body. “Do something violent!”
The rush that came with the overcharge was indescribable; it made Bustov feel invincible. “Ahahaha, it’s showtime!”
The arrow of ice struck the thin curtain and was reflected right back at the ranger, harmlessly bouncing off the thin drapes protecting the prophet. Without dealing with the proxy first, Marlos would be untouchable from either melee or ranged.
Taking advantage of the opening, the proxy’s tentacles burst out from its ooze-like body and struck the party, grabbing anyone it could in an attempt to smother them with its ten appendages. Its dozens of eyes darted around the place and throughout its body, keeping tabs on anyone who dared go after Marlos and immediately cutting off their route.
Lintelfaden unsheathed his katana and charged in. “We’ll just deal with him first!”
His slash went wide as the proxy climbed up the wall, evading the party while it tried to smother Gisella and Augusta. Its eyes were filled with glee when it realised the fighters couldn’t reach him from on the wall and it goaded them to come and chase. A laser struck its bulbous head but the light was just absorbed and shot back out through its eyes, randomly striking anyone in the area. Hitting Marlos wasn’t a concern as the curtain reflected the attack once again.
“I’m stuck, I’m stuck, I’m stuck!” Augusta panicked. “I’m gonna get choked and-” She glanced around her and realised she was hardly being crushed, too small to be properly squeezed or suffocated. She popped out of the tentacle and ran up it towards the proxy, channeling her ki into her fist. “Alrighty, let’s go, Chuckie!”
The initial impact of her blow hardly dealt any damage but the follow-up was immense, stunning the proxy and creating a minor shockwave. The brief opening gave Gisella a chance to escape using her telekinesis.
The Lenz glowed as power was siphoned into the arrow and frigid winds whipped around the supercharged ranger. Fensal created a crimson string at his fingertips and flicked it into the air, creating a hovering target to guide the uncontrollable shot.
“I won’t let you!” Marlos roared and Ironfang came hurtling through the veil.
Wolfram was quick to act and threw himself in harm’s way, using his Soul Stealer as a shield. Ironfang released a peal of thunder that shook his very core but he held strong, giving Bustov just enough time to loose the arrow.
Marlos had received countless reports of who were the most dangerous party members within the mercenary group. A rouge with telekinesis and a cyborg minotaur were among those he had to watch out for but there was one specific target that all of his spies warned him about.
An android ranger with an explosive bow.
The arrow flew right through the sightline, leaving a crystalline tail in its wake. It struck the proxy dead in the head and began to pulse; crackling with energy that threatened to collapse on itself.
“Wow,” Lorenz chuckled. “No matter how many times I see that shot, it’s as beautiful as ever.”
The eruption shook the inner sanctum and the proxy was launched off of the wall, crashing to the ground frozen and dazed. Chunks of ice rained down around them and a pale mist flowed from the explosion like a wave; the temperature in the room dropped and a chill ran up their spines.
Lilie created an ethereal clock and her hourglass pupils began to glow. “Don’t let it get back on the wall!”
A red ethereal clock appeared around Lintelfaden and the hands began to spin rapidly, imbuing him with unnatural speed and strength. In a blink of an eye, he had severed another tentacle in what seemed like a single slash… yet the appendage split into several pieces.
Not good, Marlos thought. The data I got from their fight with the Centipede didn’t reveal this much strength! Were they holding back or did they get that much power in such a short amount of time? The veil split in two and tentaclessnakes shot out from a staff he was holding, grabbing Ironfang and returning it to his hand. “You won’t accomplish anything here! The elemental princes will return and you cannot stop it!”
He tore away the curtain for one reason; to be dramatic. For a split second, everyone turned to face him and their eyes met his own. His cursed gaze could be felt by all and their bodies began to turn to stone from the ground up.
“Can’t look,” Gisella cursed, knowing that her telekinesis relied on sight. She pulled her daggers towards their sheaths; the last thing she wanted was to lose control and be weaponless.
“Well, our information was right about one thing,” Marlos chuckled. “Her telekinesis is useless without sight.”
The tentaclessnakes shot out from the staff again and wrapped around Gisella, ensnaring and yanking her off her feet. Pulled to fight Marlos alone, the veil moved on its own and concealed the two, isolating them from the others completely.
A slight pause in the battle allowed the proxy to recover from the blast. Letting out an ear-piercing scream, its severed appendages instantly regenerated and it flailed wildly, crushing anyone and anything near it. Tentacles lashed out erratically, striking even the spellcasters keeping their distance; defending them was next to impossible.
“We’re fine!” Lorenz coughed, leaping out of the way of another tentacle. “Gisella is trapped with Marlos, we have to kill this thing!”
Augusta climbed up Elmo and landed lightly on his shield. “Teamwork, right, Elmo?”
“Been a while since I did this,” he admitted. “Don’t miss!”
Unlike before, her tiny body was sent flying into the air and above the proxy. She clapped her hands and her knuckles were imbued with fire-like blades; her raging ki took form. “Okay, Chuckie, help me out here!”
“What a crazy idea,” the ghost chuckled, manifesting above her. “I kind of like it.”
Chuckie kicked her straight down and she sliced through the proxy’s tentacles, burning her way through and crashing into the ground. Elmo sighed as she bounced from the impact like a bouncy toy, flying from one end of the room into the wall.
Quick to follow-up, Fensal seized the initiative to close the gap and strike with his sunsaber, running along the walls thanks to Lolth’s blessing. Corrosive acid seeped into the beam with Juiblex’s power and it cleanly sliced through another tentacle with ease. Again the proxy diverted his attention to the target that last tore his tentacles.
“What is going on out there?!” Marlos cursed. “Useless proxy can’t do a damn thing against mercenaries!” A thunderous shockwave forced Gisella to the ground and the tentacles snakes lashed out of his staff and left the veil.
Using the vibrations in the ground, the snakes latched around Wolfram before he could continue pressuring the proxy and increasing the party’s advantage. He couldn’t get a proper swing off, not when they bit into his armour and tried to drag him towards the veil.
“You have to attack now!” he yelled, uncharacteristically.
“I’ve got this, you worry about yourself!” Lintelfaden assured. A part of his chest opened revealing a swirling yin-yang disc. “We’ll clean up here so don’t go dying on us!”
The ‘yin’ guided his blade. Charging forth and blurring speeds thanks to Lilie’s time magic, he cut through the tar black tentacles with ease. Even through the proxy’s defense, it meant nothing to the razor edge of the Katana of the Lich Shogun’s Eternal Shogunate and was torn apart in the face of overwhelming power. Multiple tentacles were diced and black blood seeped from the open wounds.
Lilie shivered as the proxy screamed in rage, dozens of eyes glaring at the mech-taur. “Hey, hey, it’s still alive!”
“All in a day’s work,” Lintelfaden declared and sheathed the katana.
A deep wound suddenly broke open down the center of the proxy’s head. Its eyes widened and rolled back into its head as it tried to recover from the lethal wound. It struggled to crawl towards Lintelfaden, raising its remaining tentacles in an effort to crush at least one of the mercenaries.
But an arrow through its enormous head sealed the deal. Bustov flicked his hair as it exploded, raining inky purple ichor blood across the battlefield. The ice along his arm had almost completely frozen over and reached his shoulder, but he wouldn’t let that stop him from styling next to explosions.
“Looking cool, Bustov!” Aki laughed.
“And how are you doing?” Elmo chuckled, practically peeling Augusta off the floor. “You went flying.”
Augusta jumped up and clenched her fists. “As fit as a fiddle! Let’s go after Marlos now!”
“Not one died…?” Marlos cursed. “Fine then, I’ll crush you all myself!”
Ironfang struck the corpse of the disintegrating proxy and a deafening peal of thunder echoed throughout the sanctum. Their ears began to ring and their heads throbbed and ached. Marlos’ skin changed and black tentacle tattoos were flowing inside his body; a symbol of the proxy animated on his skin.
The staff had changed form, filled with eyes akin to the proxy, and the snakes were replaced with warping tentacles. He held back Wolfram with Ironfang and his gaze completely shut down Gisella’s effectiveness.
“He’s just one person,” Fensal reminded. “We can overwhelm him-”
“Come here,” the prophet snapped and the staff ensnared Fensal. He stared directly into the android’s eyes and forced them open with the staff. Unlike before, he couldn’t focus on a single target but now? He turned his target to stone in seconds. “Done. One down.”
His skin turned to stone and he blocked Lintelfaden’s powerful charge, forced back but refused to fall to his knees. The katana couldn’t even cut all the way through his arms, embedding itself in but blocked from slicing through.
“Constantly charging around the place,” Marlos hissed. “Look at your crude and lifeless body, not an ounce of beauty or grace with anything you do!”
“Leave it to yours truly to finish the job,” Bustov assured and charged another arrow.
“Stop!” Gisella cried. “Don’t shoot, the veil is-!”
Animating on its own, it flew to protect the prophet, deflecting the arrow right back at the ranger. The curtain wrapped around Marlos like a cloak, ready to protect him at a moment’s notice, forcing his enemies to fight him up close.
“Hey, you alright?!” Lorenz snapped, shielding his eyes from the icy mist.
“I’m fine!” Bustov replied. “That veil is a pain but that just makes this interesting!”
There wasn’t a reliable way to force the veil to reveal itself and it refused to animate for anything other than ranged attacks. But they couldn’t ignore it when it started intercepting Lorenz and Aki’s healing spells, separating the vanguard from the backline.
The prophet was very adept at close combat, holding back both Wolfram and Lintelfaden at the same time. He never gave his opponents a chance to rest nor would he allow the mechataur to charge and fight freely. The tentacles from the proxy’s staff moved on their own to protect his back while Ironfang released thunderous peals with every hit.
“Lilie?” Lorenz asked. “I’m gonna need some assistance here to get rid of that veil.”
“That jerk is hurting Wolfram,” she snapped. “I want to blow him up!”
“Then make the most out of this opening!”
He fired a laser and, as expected, the veil left Marlos and reflected the ray back at him with perfect precision. Doing his best to redirect the shot with his photokinesis but it still struck his shoulder and burned the skymetal, knocking him to the ground. But the opening was created and Lilie’s eyes glowed with power. Blue ethereal clocks appeared around Marlos and the reflective curtain, spinning backwards forcing them to move sluggishly as if a great weight was placed on them.
“Throw me!” Augusta ordered.
Elmo gladly grabbed her by the collar of her shirt and rocketed her into the fray, straight for the curtain. She tore it in half as she went flying from one end of the room to the other, taking one of the ripped pieces with her and shredding it to bits.
“Another nuisance in this band of freakshows,” Marlos cursed, breaking the hold of the clock around him. “I will-”
He took an ice arrow to the chest, no more veil to protect him from the ranged attackers. Struggling to hold them off, he lost focus for just a moment and suffered a deep wound to Lintelfaden’s katana. He was able to counter and stave off a full onslaught thanks to his medusa eyes, always forcing his enemy to fight carefully but there were too many targets to prioritise while fighting alone.
“Finally wrapped around behind him,” Gisella sighed. The circuitry in her body began to glow as she tore the proxy’s scepter out of his hand. In one motion, she snapped it in half and the contained energy exploded out like a wave of shadows.
Marlos couldn’t do anything as Wolfram knocked Ironfang out of his hand and Lintelfaden pierced his heart with a quick thrust, finally breaking through his enhanced stoneskin. The proxy’s tattoos began to recede and a faint black mist left his body, and his power along with it.
“Tactless freaks…” Marlos coughed. “Was that everything you had…? You might’ve been able to kill Gar before… but now?” His body began to melt as he returned to the earth. “You can’t stop the ritual…”
“Who says we’re gonna stop it?” Bustov asked. “If we’ve got to fight an elemental princess then so be it, it’s nothing we can’t handle.”
“Baseless confidence… Everything… will be flooded…”
And he dissolved into mud.
Despite a massive victory in their favour no one was cheering or celebrating. This fight was just a prelude and they knew it; fighting Olhydra within the water node was inevitable. They tried to avoid going to the water temple for so long but they couldn’t run now, they would leave as heroes or drown and be forgotten.
“Let’s go to the node,” Elmo suggested. “No point in hanging around.”
“Wait, we need to do something first,” Lorenz interrupted. He grabbed Ironfang and Tinderstrike and brought them to the altar. A hammer lay beside it and he raised it above his head, bringing it crashing down against the prophet’s weapons. As expected, they shattered into pieces, each releasing energy from the element they represented.
But most importantly, a symbol on each of the elemental statues lit up. One for earth and another for fire.
“Just like the lady asked us to do,” Gisella muttered. She shook her head and turned to the party. “We should destroy these when we get the chance, we don’t want anyone else getting their hands on it.”
“Makes sense,” Lintelfaden agreed. “Oh, by the way… Uh, what do we do with Fensal?”
It seemed he didn’t have to worry. Augusta was already sitting on his petrified body and was sifting through her bag. “Um, let’s see… I know I have it somewhere… jar of leeches, soul-stealing dagger… Aha!” She revealed a small vial filled with some kind of glowing dust. “Unicorn powder!”
“Where did you get that?”
“Why did I ask?”
She sprinkled the powder over Fensal’s body and he was gradually freed from the petrification. The process was slow and it took hours for it to finally be completed, but the party could use a much needed rest before charging into their final battle. Though anyone who could rest now without the nerves getting to them wouldn’t be human. Elmo approached the statue with the symbol of water and a portal opened up to the water node…
There was nothing but a vast ocean as far as the eye could see, dark clouds overhead threatening endless torrential rain. He shivered as a cold mist chilled him and began to flow through the portal; ahead was a dismal place, but one they could not shy away from.
“Are we ready?” Elmo asked. “The portal doesn’t lead to solid ground, it drops us in from above onto the ocean. We won’t be returning this way?”
“I’m as ready as I’ll ever be,” Augusta admitted.
Lilie shook her head. “Oh, that place looks scary. Wolfram! Don’t even let fishies touch me!”
Gisella flipped her knives between her fingers, confidently strutting her skills. “We always knew we would fight the water temple in the end, let’s do this just as we planned.”
“From a space station, to earth, then to an endless ocean,” Lorenz chuckled. “I guess it was all leading up to this.”
“My systems are good to go,” Fensal assured. “What about you, Lintelfaden?”
He sheathed the katana and nodded his head. “Burning with energy!”
Bustov flicked his hair and tossed a small bottle into the node, popping open the cork lid. It struck the ocean and then shattered, creating a galleon for the party to ride. “Alright, no turning back now! It’s showtime!”
You must log in to post a comment.