Part 29: Just two more notches on the gun, folks.
Chapter 20 - Just two more notches on the gun, folks.
Well, it was about time to deal with that dragon whose name no one cares about that was kicking around in the Umar Hills, so off we went. Meet the dragon killing army, Mark I.
Before we got to the actual fighting, however...
It... it is nothing, truly, Haer'Dalis. I am simply... thinking of a time when I still had my wings. Sometimes... sometimes the memory still wrenches my soul.
I think I understand your loss, sweet one.
Do you? I... mean no offense, Haer'Dalis, but I find that hard to believe, if you have never flown.
Ah, but there are more ways to fly than with wings, my dove. And the fall to mundane earth is similarly filled with agony.
"My fall was not the thing, my love,
I thought I bore it well
but to stare up into the heavens
from the darkened plains of hell
and think that I, too, once walked those
is a pain I cannot tell."
That's... that was very lovely, Haer'Dalis.
They are but simple words, my dove. For this bard to understand but a tiny fraction of your pain has cleft my heart in twain. You... have my deepest sympathy, sweet, lonely Aerie.
I... th-thank you.
And then, it was time for fighting!
After a magnificent battle, the beast lay slain!
Let us return to Sir Clarenshide and tell him of our victory.
Saerileth landed the killing blow, as you can see from her info sheet.
The foul wyrm had some magnificent treasure, as foul wyrms tend to do. Treasure hordes, you know. There was the Ring of Protection +2, the Cloak of Balduran, and the Amulet of Power. All very, very nice things. Inside the nearby cavern, there was a pretty sweet-looking treasure chest.
If by "treasure chest" you mean "Killer Mimic", that is.
We happily took its blood to give to Jermien.
As we were heading back to the wizard, however...
Yes, a little.
Never dost thou cease to show me new parts of thyself. Still I think that this mayst surprise thee. [She shyly holds out a bottle of wine. Though it is obviously ancient, it is not dusty.] I found this when last we were in the Temple district of Athkatla. I bought it and saved it for thee.
Wine? You, Saerileth?
[Saerileth's face is blank.] There is naught immoral about the fruit of the vine. 'Tis true one shouldst not drink to drunkenness, but that is all. Why shouldst thou be surprised?
No reason. What's the occasion?
I wish to celebrate that I love thee and that thou lovest me. Need I other occasion?
No, Saerileth. That's enough reason to celebrate!
So I thought! [Saerileth hands you the bottle.] Thus do I drink to our love.
No matter how many times you click "drink potion", the wine will never go away and you will never get the "Drunk" status effect.
Yeah! I want t' be a ranger and protect the village!
I want t' be a great warrior like me dad!
I knows we can! But... everyone says we're all too young an' all.
Bull! That's wot I says t' that!
Since... since you're already an adventurer an' all, sir, I was hopin'... I was hopin' you might maybe... maybe buy some swords for us? Some bastard swords?
And some ale, Dirbert! Don't forget the ale!
Yeah, we wants t' be real men!
Er... swords and some ale, then. If... if we give you th' money, sir, would you buy us some?
Who am I to deny the young? I'll get you your swords and ale, if that's what you wish.
Great! Gee, thanks, sir! You're the greatest! Here... here's the gold we've saved. Get us three bastard swords, I guess, and a keg of Baalor's ale from Min Minling.
Yay! I'm so excited!
Well, we headed off and bought them three bastard swords and the requested Baalor Ale.
Well, this looks safe.
...I know that, Jan. I was being sarcastic.
So was I!
That's not really what it means.
That's not really what it means.
Stop copying everything I say.
Stop copying everything I say.
Stop copying everything I say.
Yes, I got your keg of ale and your swords, here.
Baalor ale and our bastard swords! Wow! You are the best, sir! Thanks!
Dibs on the ale!
I want to hold my sword!
Let's go! Whoo-hoo!
And so, we finally gave Jermien the blood he wanted.
Yes, I do have some, in fact.
Eh? Let me have a look at what you have, there. Yes... yes... I see. Well done, boy, well done! I don't know how you found it, but here it is! I took the liberty of digging out that sword, earlier, just in case. Rather prophetic of me, don't you think? It was just collecting dust, anyway... so here you go and well earned, I might add. Now... all I need to do is to add this to the golem and he will be complete! Finally, I will be able to leave in peace and be assured that Colette will not be molested while I am gone!
Yes! Awake, my creature! Awake and hear my command!
Eh? Wh-what is wrong, here? No! No, stay back! BACK, I COMMAND YOU!!
At 'em, lads!
No need to say it twice!
After a very short battle...
Y-yes... I am alive, my daughter. Thanks to our kind stranger, here...
Colette?! Colette, what has happened?
Oh, Daar! Oh, Daar, it was terrible!
One of my own creations turned on me, boy. It... it seems I am not so wise and powerful as I had first thought. And... perhaps I have been foolish in some of my other decisions, as well. Daar... boy... if you promise to take care of my daughter, and protect her... if you still want her... I'll not stand in the way.
Oh, father! Are you serious? Thank you!
Indeed. Thank you, Jermien. I shall take excellent care of Colette, you can be sure. Come, my love... let's not waste this chance.
Here is Ilbratha.
After that, it was time for a good rest. At an inn, unlike all the camping in streets and assorted other uncomfy places we'd been doing recently. And, since this was the Imnesvale Inn, we got to watch the innkeeper and stableboy bicker.
Even if the culprit didn't turn out to be Umar?
Ha ha! 'Tis a sting! A sting on ye, Vince!
The name's Vincenzo, ye lard-arsed rodent! I never wished Umar to be the culprit, I only feared it. And she be out there still...
I'd like to see your services.
Of course, me Lord... more'n happy t' offer ye anything under me roof. Things are kind o' quiet, now that the murders have ended... not that I'm complainin'.
Maybe ye can make up th' business by rentin' rooms to them ogres, aye? How about cleanin' up after them fellers, aye?
Shut yer yip, boy... or I'll offer ye to yon visitin' ogre as a noon-time snack, I will. Now... me Lord...
Anyway, we happened to be travelling by the cave and heard some screams coming from it, so we checked it out.
RUN BEFORE IT [hic] KILLS US ALL!!
I... I don't [hic!] feeelll welll...
Hee hee hehehehehe hehehe HEEHEE!!
They were very, very drunk and being chased by a diseased gibberling, so we killed the thing and they ran off back home.
Well, they'll be facing a fearsome headache on the morrow, 'tis certain.
We followed them back to the village, just to be sure, and spoke with this guy.
What have you to offer?
Let's just have a look and see if anything strikes your fancy.
Well, I picked up a copy of the History of the Zhentarim, and he spoke to me. Seems it was a code action of some sort.
Darcin Cole was your name.
Indeed. Indeed it was. As I said in the letter, I am sorry for these simple games. Merely a ruse to throw off the foolish guards of Athkatla. I trust you have the armor almost complete?
Yes, yes I do. It is not quite done yet, though.
Of course. I will add the final touches, but I do need the most important ingredient first. Your workmanship is unparalleled, but it needs... something special. The skins were exquisite, but now there must be blood. You know what I need. Bring me the blood of a dragon. A silver dragon.
Certainly... ah, any idea where I might find one.
None whatsoever. You are the artist; you find one.
After that, it was time for another epic battle! But first...
Because my Uncle Quayle taught me to worship Baervan, and Aerdrie Faenya is all that remains to me of my people.
I understand thee not. Is't not Corellon Larethian who is the god of thy people?
I was once a winged elf, Saerileth. [Aerie's face darkens with remembered pain.]
[Saerileth's eyes flood with sympathy, and she presses Aerie's hand.] How--
They became infected during my slavery, and my masters sawed them off.
How horrible! [Saerileth can say no more, and for long, her eyes filled with pity, rest on the avariel.]
Now then! Say hello to the dragon killing army, Mark II.
Have at, friends and comrades!
After a battle far, far more epic than the previous...
Ahaha! I killed a dragon! I killed a DRAGON! I'M THE HAPPIEST SWORD ALIVE!!
It was definitely Minsc that got this one, as seen in his character sheet.
The beast had a fascinating scroll and of course, we took its scales.
As we left the dungeon...
Growing up in Candlekeep I would scale the ramparts in the evenings to watch the sun fall into the sea...
Our... Our childhoods were not so different, were they...
And so, we returned to Athkatla to do some selling. We also spoke to this man, who turned out to have some very useful skills.
I take it that you are Maheer?
Indeed I am! Maheer yn Kadar el Saddith, most recently of Rashemen, at your service!
You are coming from Rashemen? I remember it fondly and hope to take Boo to see it once I have completed my dajemma.
Aha! Boo is your witch, then, I take it?
No. Boo is my hamster. And Boo is my friend.
Oh... I, I see. I - where was I? Ah, yes, my Lord! You are, uh, still interested in examining my wares, yes?
Perhaps, but I was wondering if you made any special weapons, actually.
Maheer does not possess the craft to create weapons, himself. There is a fine dwarven smith in this city who knows such skills. The stout one's name be Cromwell, my Lord... and his shop is within the Docks District here in the city. I will tell you one thing, my Lord... I can create the finest of musical horns - the dwarf knows not this art. I see you have the silver horn. Hmmm... and a diamond! If you wish, for 2,000 gold pieces I could create a more powerful instrument!
If you could make the silver horn more powerful, it's worth it.
As you wish! My family art... ahhhh... and a bronze horn you have, my Lord. If you ever acquire a beljuril gem, I could do even more. But here you go.
I happen to have such a gem right here.
Ahhh... Then with 5,000 gold pieces I could take these and make you the finest of instruments.
Certainly. That sounds like a deal.
Ah, yes... the old magic of my family shall turn your fine horn into the great Iron Horn. Rarely have I seen its like, casadhi... here you go. Use it well.