Another session write-up post to keep the writing going. This is from the Dungeons & Dragons 5e “Hoard of the Dragon Queen” adventure:
From the Journal of Thenric Blackthorne
Rescuing the caravan’s goods, we hire the kobolds to clear the road of traps and accompany the wagons to the town of Greenest. As we draw closer to town, plumes of dark smoke billow in the sky overhead. Something is amiss.
A Town in Trouble
As we cross the last rise to Greenest, we see the instigator of the smoke; a large blue drake flies above the town, breathing streaks of lightning down on the buildings below. Accompanying this fearsome beast is a large band of kobolds and human cultists, obviously the force we heard about from the captive kobolds in the Overwatch tower.
We know we are no match for a dragon of that size. An argument ensues among the party of the best course of action. Chazz wants no part of the destructive blue dragon, it is certain death for us all; I empathize with his position. Every time I hear the beast hiss lightning down on Greenest the blood drains from my face. But we are all creatures of action and we cannot just sit idly by while our enemies slaughter the good people of Greenest. We realize we can’t defeat a dragon but we have already proven we can dispatch his land-bound allies with ruthless abandon; so into the town we go.
Heading in from the East road, our two armored comrades Magnus and Chazz taking point. Barton and I bring up the rear, covering their advance with our bows and guarding against flanking attacks from the buildings on the side of the road. Advancing to the first intersection in town, we witness a family bursting forth from around a nearby corner shop. A woman and a wounded old man push 3 small children before them. Pursuing them with murderous glee is a group of cultists and kobolds.
Chazz and Magnus quickly close with the enemy, stepping up to protect the family’s flight. Barton and I stand behind and to the sides of our comrades, guarding their flanks and cooling the kobolds’ killing ardor with some well-placed arrows. As a group, we attack with a precision that belies our brief time together, mowing through all of our opponents and saving the family from death.
Fight at the Church
The town is falling into chaos. Looking south, Magnus sees Pebbles pop his head out of the safety of the church walls, beckoning for our help. Thinking the church a good location to protect the common folk now in our charge, we hasten to the church grounds. The church serves as a haven for townfolk unable to reach the safety of the small keep in the middle of town. Surrounded by cultists and kobolds trying to force their way inside, Pebbles and his charges desperately hold the doors against their onslaught. Realizing the perilous situation at the church entrance, our little band moves into action, catching the attacker by surprise. Again Barton and I hold back and provide covering fire while Magnus and Chazz blunt the counterattack with their shields and hand weapons. The kobolds attack in numbers, gaining advantage and succeed in grievously wounding Magnus before we can stem the tide and defeat them. Chazz revives the dwarven cleric, but we have all suffered wounds in the defense of the townspeople.
In our current state, Pebbles feels the church building’s protection isn’t sufficient for all of us to survive. Seeing the town‘s keep on the other side of a long field, we group the people into a single mass and charge them across the open field to its protection. Our goal was to keep them away from the kobolds and cultists in the building and streets of Greenest, but our plan ran afoul with the blue dragon that landed 20 yards in front of us, blocking our path to the keep.
Fear the Dragon!
I’m ashamed to say my personal bravery drained at the sight of this huge drake so close, and I fled in terror with many of the town people, but Chazz and Barton stood their ground. For reasons unknown to me, the dragon seemed more interested in recovering the long-sword we liberated at the Overwatch tower than destroying us all with a single breath. Distracted by the sword, the beast was caught unaware by a large iron bolt launched from a ballista at the top of the keep’s tower. Piercing the scales in his back, the drake cried in pain and anger, lumbering back to the protection of the sky.
This gave us a brief respite to find a small sortie tunnel to the keep that Pebbles knew. Gathering the frightened town’s folk, we pushed them into the small dank tunnel, hoping the passage would not end up being our burial mound. Although attacked in the narrow passageway by a swarm of rats, we reached the safety of the keep, bleeding, beaten but unbowed.