Vita est ludus
The thin line between fantasy and reality...













The City of the Spider Queen - Day 10 - Thelossa the Werebat

Uktar 7, 1372 DR (Noon) Deep Wastes: Lake of Shadows to Glouroth's Chasm

The party eats their "delicious" iron rations, except for Brianna, who just chats with her companions. Everybody tries to avoid spoiling their appetite by looking at the gore-spattered Hazen.

"Aren't you hungry, Brianna?" asks Igor.

Brianna smiles. "I actually don't need to eat or drink, Igor. I am more than happy to do so at a banquet, or in your house in Sigil: your cook is outstanding! But, there's nothing special, or even interesting, about trail rations."

Veracity smiles at her and squeezes her hand. "We do live the good life back in Sigil, don't we?"

"Yeah!" agrees Kress. "It'd be easy to get used to!"

"I have gotten used to it," says Hazen. He leans back, closes his eyes, and smiles, as if he is remembering something pleasant. "Ah." A few minutes later, gentle snores arise from the contented duergar.

After lunch, Kress wakes up Hazen from his nap, and the party proceeds.

(4:00 PM)

Several hours later, in a wide part of the cavern, Veracity stops. "Hold on, Igor," she says. "What's that?"

Igor peers into the darkness. "I see nothing."

Tebryn, Yol, and Hazen all peer into the darkness and nod.

"Yes," says Tebryn. "Three large bats, flying straight towards us."

Hazen and Veracity each pull out their bows. Tebryn incants and engulfs all three of the creatures in a ball of flame. One falls, a flaming cinder. The other two, more or less damaged, continue their approach.

Hazen fires a couple of arrows at the most injured bat, hitting once. As the two bats continue flying towards the party, suddenly a large column of flame descends from above, engulfing both Igor and Veracity. Igor dives to the side, completely avoiding injury. Veracity is not so lucky. She also evades the brunt of the flame strike, but fails to resist the magical effect and is somewhat burned. "Hey!" She fires her bow three times at the most singed bat, striking it with two arrows. "These are hardy bats," comments Yol. She incants, and fires her own fireball at the approaching creatures, burning both of them. "Indeed," says Tebryn. He sends yet another fireball at the creatures, dropping the most injured one. He raises his eyebrows. "That other bat has taken three fireballs and is still coming. That's definitely no normal bat!"

Hazen fires several more arrows at the bat, hitting it twice. The bat wheels around and escapes.

Veracity stamps her foot. "No way are you going to singe me and get away!" She gestures and mutters an arcane phrase. Everybody in the party suddenly seems to be moving faster. "Yes!" Veracity runs after the bat in pursuit. Tebryn smiles. He too runs forth until the bat is again within range of his vision. Strangely, it had landed. He conjures and gestures at the creature, and it freezes in place.

Hazen, Kress, Igor, and Yol all move forward as fast as they can. Veracity incants and sends five missiles of force plunging into the creature. The bat's wing flutter. "No you don't," says Tebryn. He tosses a silver pin to the ground and a burst of electricity envelopes the bat. It transforms into a dead female drow.

Veracity runs up and looks down at her. "Druid, perhaps? Well." She mutters an arcane phrase and studies her intently. She nods, leans over, and extracts two pearls from the drow's belt pouch. "Strong transmutation," she comments. "Shall we question her?" she asks, looking at Yol. The death priestess nods and bends over the corpse. She mutters and touches the body.

"What is your name?" asks Yol. As usual, Tebryn frowns.

"My name is Thelossa," says the dead drow.

"What are these pearls?" asks Yol.

"They are pearls of power, one of the third level, and one of the fourth," answers Thelossa.

"Who sent you?" continues the death priestess.

"Nobody," says Thelossa. "I live here." She speaks no more.

Tebryn sighs. "She wasted a question again. Who cares about her name?"

Yol scowls at him. "I care. I want to know just who it was that I sent to Hel."

Veracity fingers the pearls. "These are very nice. But is this all she owns?"

"Let's search the area for her lair," suggests Hazen.

"Very well," agrees Veracity. "But I wouldn't mind having my burns healed first." Brianna nods and approaches her. With two short songs and gentle caresses, she cures Veracity of all the damage she'd taken from the flame strike. Veracity smiles at her. "Thank you," she says. Brianna grins back at her and nods.

For the rest of the afternoon, the party searches the area. No sign of Thelossa's lair is found.

"Well, we may as well use these pearls," says Veracity. "If I remember how they work, each will allow a wizard to recall a spell she's already cast that day. Who's interested?"

Tebryn yawns and waves his hand at Yol and Veracity. "You two take one each. I don't need them."

Yol and Veracity each take one of the pearls. Veracity concentrates, trying to recover her haste spell. She smiles. "Got it! I must have the third level pearl, and you the fourth, Yol."

The group camps, setting the usual watches.

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Copyright © 2004 by Brianna Sollandry <brianna at hambo dot com> Ph'nglui mglw'nafh Cthulhu
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