We burst out of the tunnel under the town’s keep (well, more accurately, Chazz burst out of the tunnel), scaring two guards posted there half to death. They challenged us, but Pebbles, the town’s gnome cleric, interceded on our behalf.
We headed to talk to the governor on the top of the keep’s tower. Along the way, we ran into Gillam Brandhoft, who asked us to rescue his two sons. It appears the attacking cultists cut them off from the safety of the keep and were hiding in the warehouses. We promised we would look into it, but the “safety” of the keep was rather suspect at the moment. We headed up to talk to Governor Nighthill. He thanked us for the rescue of the civilians but immediately requested we protect the castle walls. The urds (flying kobolds) had disabled all the ballistae, and the dragon was flying unimpeded over Greenest.
Repair the Ballista
With Barton staying the top of the keep’s tower, our plan was to cover Magnus as he used a mending spell to fix a ballista. Urds came flying in to sabotage the repairs, but Barton, Chazz and I kept them at bay. Two urds flew to the top of the tower to engage Barton, but he fended them off. Once we repaired the ballista, we decided it was time to face the dragon (or more accurately, Chazz decided it was time to face the dragon). He climbed down the castle walls and hurled insults until the dragon appeared. Then, the ballista, Barton and I all struck the blue dragon with missile fire. While the dragon survived the attacks, He howled at the wounds and flew off in anger. I have a feeling we have not seen the last of that drake.
Enemy at the Gates
The next crisis was a battering ram on the front gates. We moved quickly down that way while Magnus sheared off to deal with the injuries to the guards and townspeople. As the battle began at the gate, an aptly named ambush drake attacked me and damned near killed me. On the other side, Barton engaged both the battering ram shield bearers and the enemy archers providing covering fire. Chazz jumped ON the battering ram (he seems to have an aversion to the protection of the keep walls). Between Barton and Chazz, they beat back the ram and routed the shield bearers, completing blunting the assault.
Looking for a Talker
Escobert (keep steward) and the Governor wanted a prisoner to interrogate, so off we went. Barton and I covered as Chazz cased a house. An attack from a small hovel behind Chazz enraged him, and he charged in to “voice his displeasure”. Barton and I moved to flank. We got a cultist escaping the carnage in the small house, and subdued him, tying him up. We then poured arrows through the window into Chazz’s opponents. Between us all, we took the cultists and mercenaries out with little difficulty.
Ambush at the Mill
The Governor and Escobert could see the cultists setting fire to the mill. Afraid they wouldn’t be able to mill food from the harvest, they asked us to intervene. (their guards must be shit.) Although nicked up and wounded, we set out to save the mill. Upon our arrival, we killed one their leaders, but it was easy to see they were not really looking to set fire to the mill, only to make it appear that way. Chazz rushed into the mill to stamp out a fire inside, triggering an ambush by the cultists. As far as we could tell, they tried to lure us into a fight. Shouting, “I’m not locked in here with you; you’re locked in here with ME!”, he charged up the loft steps to attack the cultist archers. Barton and I “culled the herd” of ambushers from the mill floor. A tough fight ensued, but with a crazy half-orc, it’s like bringing a gun to a knife-fight. True to our word, we killed all the cultists in the mill.
Beaten and tired after a week’s worth of fighting completed in a day, we headed back to the keep and some much needed rest.