The party headed off to the area that Grimble believed was close to a piece of the orb, located by Carric's triangulation method. Siobhan grew less angry as they traveled, recognizing that the party was trying to help. Caelesti pointed out that, if it weren't for the Charm, they would not have interfered.
The trees at the party's destination were very tall, with the lowest braches 50' above the ground. Houses and walkways were visible amongst the higher branches. The party tried to communicate with the residents of the houses by calling up greetings in sylvan. There was no response.
The party switched tactics and attempted to lure the forest dwellers out with entertainment. Talon started to play a song. Caelesti, rarely able to hear a song without dancing, began dancing. Talon suggested that everyone should wear their matching hats; all were except the men. Carric made a point of wearing his in his pocket. Caelesti modified her dance to surreptitiously take the hat out of Carric's pocket and place it on his head. Noticing that Siobhan was still out of sorts, Caelesti moved to dance around her until her mood improved. There was still no appearance of the tree house dwellers.
Carric suggested that the party should climb up the trees to "force" a visit. Grimble flew up with a rope to set up for the others to climb. As he neared a house, there was a loud shriek, Grimble suddenly stiffened, and he plummeted to the ground. Grimble lied there, unmoving. Siobhan moved to him and cast a melodic cure, bringing him around. Grimble did not want to try again.
The next plan was to send a makeshift basket of stuff up to a house as a gift. Talon led the group to make the basket and fill it with food items, flowers, and art (self portraits). Carric then summoned two monkeys to carry it up a tree to a house. The monkeys set the basket down and backed away per Carric's orders. There was another shriek, causing one monkey to slump onto its branch, while the other scampered away.
Small hands reached out of the house and grabbed the monkey. Shortly after the summoning spell ended (i.e. the monkey disappeared), the party could hear some angry chittering coming from the house. A little while later, the basket of stuff was grabbed and brought inside. The food was taken out of the basket, and the rest of the contents, including the basket, were discarded and rained down on the party.
Given that the party recognized that the tree house resident kept the food, and Grimble pointed out that the snare the party had found was for small animals, the party spent the rest of the day collecting small animals as a more tailored gift of food. When ready, Talon cast Tongues and called up to present the gift. The inhabitant asked for the party to back away before he would come down. The party backed off about 30', and the small creature glided down the trunk of the tree. The creature was only 3 feet tall, wore animal hides, and looked vaguely elf- and fey-like. The creature grabbed the food and glided back up into the trees.
Talon waited for the creature to be satisfied and presented a new bargain. She suggested that the party could collect more food in exchange for baubbles that may be of no use to them. Since Grimble had given the party a reasonable description of the orb and its facets, Talon tailored the description of desirable baubbles to match a facet. The creature said it wanted to get its elders to agree to such a deal.
The elders arrived 20 minutes later and presented their deal to the "ground ravens", their name for the people who liked to collect baubles. In this deal, the party would receive the facet by killing a flying, ravenous, lizard that had recently moved into the area and often attacked them. The party agreed and was shown the cave where the flying lizard lived and was given some information about the lizard itself.
The party set up camp so that they could rest and be prepared for the battle with a full set of spells. The night passed without incident. The party woke up early so that they could spy on the entrance to the cave starting at dawn. The lizard, suspected at really being a young green dragon, did not emerge. At noon, Carric recovered his spells, and the party advanced on the cave entrance, from the sides.
To lure the dragon out, Talon cast Ghost Sound, pretending to be another dragon taunting the green dragon to come out. During the taunting session, Grimble put up his Improved Invisibility.
When the 5' long green dragon came out to look around, Grimble flew up and cast Irresistible Dance on it. Caelesti then shot a pair of Magic Missiles at it. Siobhan moved up to it and attacked it with her rapier. Carric started casting a Summoning spell.
Talon started a song to inspire courage in her team. The dragon could do nothing but dance, and Siobhan was able to get a weak stab at it. She switched to spells, casting a Sonic Burst on it. Carric's summoning brought a Hippogriff which bit and clawed the small green dragon. Carric also moved up to it and attacked it with his scimitar.
Talon completed her Inspiring Song. The dragon continued to dance, provoking unsuccessful attacks by the hippogriff and Carric. Caelesti cast more Magic Missiles at it. As it was too crowded for another Sound Burst, Siobhan moved to flank the dragon, but missed. The hippogriff got in two well-placed claws, dropping the dragon. The hippogriff bit the beaten dragon anyway. Carric slashed it with a well-placed swing, killing it.
The party entered the cave to collect the dragon's treasure. They used Detect Magic, noting that ... were magical. They then gathered up the dragon and headed back to the tree-top village.
At the base of the tree, Talon cast Tongues. She called up, announcing the completion of their task. Grimble flew up to collect the reward, the facet from the orb. Grimble flew back to the party, and the party tested the Arrow of Detection on the facet. The arrow stopped quivering. Success!
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|Copyright © 2009 by Brianna Sollandry <brianna at hambo dot com>||
Ph'nglui mglw'nafh Cthulhu
R'lyeh wgah-nagl fhtagn.