Raiding Mt Rushmore

Due to unfortunate circumstances, Lyka’s player was still absent and Kikkeni’s player, who has been the most consistent in terms of attendance, suddenly couldn’t make it either. I couldn’t contact Nox’s player, but he had informed me beforehand that he’d be late.

Only Linny’s player and Holden’s player arrived. I was worried about splitting the subbed characters between the two of them, but eventually we got so bored that we figured we might as well go ahead. Holden’s player handled Nox, while Linny’s player boldly handled Kikkeni, Linny and Lyka.

We ran into some difficulty with reading Kikkeni’s power sheets (which had been printed on a dot matrix printer), but we somehow managed. Anyway, without further ado:

Day 51: The Onrushing Storm

The PCs get up at 6 AM and begin the treacherous 2 hour journey down the pass that descends the cliff face. They notice that the weather over the canyon hasn’t changed; it has been cloudy since yesterday, and thunder periodically rumbles through the cloud cover. Although there is no wind and rain, the dark sky is foreboding.
Linny notices that the bridge below is a chain suspension bridge held up by crackling electric rings at intervals; these look very similar to the air elemental rings used in airships. Their close proximity to each other causes a sort of resonance that is likely responsible for the bad weather.

At about 8 AM they arrive at the foot of the bridge. They do the smart thing and tie themselves by the waist onto the handrail chains, and slowly begin the quarter-mile walk across the swaying bridge.

About 200 feet from the other end, the five-headed statue of Tiamat that looms over the bridge begins to speak.

“Who dares approach the Fane of Tiamat?”
“Priest Captain Holden Magroen of the Silver Flame.”

Lyka states her rank and complete name as well.

While the voice echoes throughout the canyon and clearly sounds like five different voices, the PCs make their will saves versus the ventriloquism. Lyka is able to pinpoint the source of the voice in the Tiamat statue’s blue dragon head.

Linny asks if it’s possible to shatter the dragon head. It certainly is, but given the scale of the statue, they’re going to have to deal a lot of damage to it.

(For some reason, Holden’s player was under the impression that the statue was only human-sized until here; only now does he realize that it’s more like Mount Rushmore.)

The statue continues: “I do not know what your business here is. Leave an offering for Tiamat and depart from here, and I might spare you.”

Holden replies: “Well, moving toward the statue counts as ‘departing from here’, doesn’t it?” He slings the maul over his shoulder and continues walking down the path. The others follow. Nox drinks a potion of invisiibility.

Almost immediately, the blue dragon Tyrgarun, the guardian of the Fane and father of Azarr Kul, jumps out of the maw of the blue dragon head and dives, landing with a thunderous tremor on the ledge.

Cue BGM.

“I am Tyrgarun, the Onrushing Storm and father of Azarr Kul! I shall not allow you to obstruct his plans! Dare you come against me?”

Kikkeni raises her Inertial Armor, while Linny casts Mass Shield of Faith. Lyka activates her Siberys Armor, spreading her dragonmark wings, and takes to the air. Holden drinks a potion of Fly and likewise moves closer to the dragon.

Immediately the dragon flies off the path and takes a position 65 feet away from the bridge, to the left of the PCs. Only Linny and Lyka succeed on their Frightful Presence saves—everyone else gets nailed. Tyrgarun lights up Holden and Lyka with his breath weapon. Both fail their saves and get blasted with 43 damage.

Kikkeni once more attempts to blast Tyrgarun, but she begins a long string of failures to breach SR. It would have been much better if she used electricity, since it gets a bonus to breaching resistance, but unfortunately the dragon is completely immune to it.

Lyka and Holden each drink potions of Enlarge Person and try to catch up with the dragon. Linny attempts in vain to blast Tyrgarun with Sound Lance, but she likewise fails miserably to breach his spell resistance.

Holden closes in, but before he even manages to get close enough to swing, Tyrgarun does a sharp turn and buzzes Holden, who misses on his AOO. The dragon instead sets upon Kikkeni, goring her with his horn. He attempts to throw her off the bridge, but she makes her reflex save and escapes with a graze. Nox misses yet again, but due to his hide check and the dragon still can’t spot him. (Okay I messed up; there was nowhere to hide. It really wouldn’t have mattered much in the end because…well, read till the end.)

Kikkeni fires yet another energy ball which simply dissipates against the dragon’s body. Linny likewise fails to get any more damage out of her second Sound Lance.

Lyka and Holden struggle to catch up with Tyrgarun, but he’s just too fast and his AC’s just too high. The dragon makes a wingover and comes straight back at Holden, goring him with his horn. Holden is able to make the reflex save to avoid the Awesome Blow, but he’s completely unable to dent Tyrgarun for now. Nox whiffs his shot yet again.

Kikkeni keeps up her bombardment, but to no effect. Out of Sound Lances, Linny instead takes up her Wand of Ice Knife—the only spell she has that can actually hit the dragon—and fails to breach SR.

Now within range, Holden smites Tyrgarun with Divine Surge, scoring a hefty 56 damage. The dragon makes his massive damage save, but Lyka circles and flanks him, dropping a Soaring Raptor Strike on him from behind. For the first time, the dragon roars in pain.

The angered dragon roars: “Oh, you shouldn’t have done that.”

“What, slept with your wife?” snarls Holden.

The dragon extends his wings and beats down hard, checking Lyka and Holden with the wind, and opens up a savage attack. The bite and first claw hits Holden, while the second claw hits Lyka. Lucky for her, the tail misses. Freaked out by the dragon’s savagery, Nox messes up his shot.

At this point Kikkeni stops trying to shoot and instead uses the Horn of Abithriax to use Psionic Fly on herself, and concentrates into Psionic Focus. Linny tries her Wand of Ice Knife once more, but the projectile fizzles ineffectually on the dragon’s hide.

Holden smites Tyrgarun once more, smashing him in the face with Bonecrusher. The dragon’s horn cracks down the middle. Lyka follows up with a Death From Above, stabbing deep into the dragon’s back.

This time Tyrgarun lets out an agonized wail.

“That’s what your wife said,” says Holden.

The furious dragon punches it, flying straight up to 90 feet above Lyka and Holden (who both whiff their AOOs), then soaring across the bridge once more to a position about 95 feet away from the bridge.

Nox calibrates his crossbow and uses the Pythagorean theorem to calculate the dragon’s position! He takes a single step to close the distance a bit!

And misses. Ho hum.

Kikkeni takes off, breaking away from Linny and Nox, while Linny tries her Ice Knife one more time. This time she rolls a natural 20 and breaches Tyrgarun’s SR, but fails to confirm her critical. The mighty shard of ice plunges into the dragon for an impressive 8 damage.

Lyka and Holden try their best to pursue the dragon, but don’t even make it halfway.

The dragon uses his Wand of Fireball and sears Linny (she makes her save) and then flies back to a position straight above the bridge, hovering above one of the lightning rings. The PCs don’t realize his plan—he intends to dive onto the bridge (sending the chain bridge quivering like a rubber band) and fire off his maximized breath weapon.

The two frontliners close in, but Nox composes himself and takes his shot. The confirmed critical hit plunges straight into Tyrgarun’s eye. He deals over 53 damage with his sneak, but the critical hit would have been enough to kill him at this point. (Which is why it didn’t matter if he was hidden or not.)

“You…cannot…stop…my son.”

Dying in mid-flight, Tyrgarun’s massive corpse crashes onto the air elemental ring. Draconic blood reacts with powerful magic, and a brilliant blue-white flash lights up the entire canyon. The impact sends the bridge swaying wildly, but Nox and Linny are able to hold on.

Realizing the dragon had just died, the PCs begin rejoicing.

Lyka then ruins the mood by asking Holden: “So, sir…did you really sleep with the dragon’s wife?”

“…”

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