During Carric's watch, three owlbear fledglings attacked. Carric attempted to improve their disposition with his animal empathy, but they smelled the owlbear blood on him and advanced angrily. Carric called out to wake the others. Talon, alone, continued sleeping.
Grimble cast entangle, holding the young owlbears fast. The party debated what to do about the owlbears; they could be sold for 3000 gp each, but could not easily be brought to a town. While the party debated, the entangling vines slackened. Caelesti cast sleep on the three, putting two to sleep. The last one trundled forward.
Carric moved forward and struck it with his scimitar. The owlbear flailed its arms wildly, but got a good bite in. Siobhan started singing a semi-encouraging song. Talon shot a crossbow bolt at the owlbear locked in combat with Carric, but it missed. Caelesti advanced toward a flanking position.
Carric attacked again, but missed. Talon missed with a second bolt. Caelesti moved behind the owlbear, and stabbed it fatally. Carric and Caelesti then moved to the sleeping owlbears, dispatching them handily.
The party continued across the valley. Carric took extra time to search for food as the party's food stores were running low.
The party approached the mountain. The magical arrow was quivering, indicating the relatively near presence of the next crystal shard. The party stood at the base of the mountain and shared rumors about stormriders. Since stormriders were rumored to not like visitors, and did like throwing lightning bolts, the party was not sure how to proceed. Carric turned into an eagle and scouted the mountain.
High up on the mountain stood a small tower with a front door that opened onto a small ledge with a well tended garden. There were open windows in the tower, revealing a well-lit and nicely furnished interior. Carric noticed no paths leading to the tower and no out-of-sight way to climb the mountain.
As Carric watched, a mountain goat entered a garden nearby the tower. A female fey, with gray skin and silver hair, exited the tower toward the garden. The fey sent a lightning bolt at the mountain goat, which, in turn, tumbled down the mountain. The party gathered up the dead mountain goat, collecting additional food.
The party looked for shelter for the night. At the campsite, the Talon composed a note to be delivered to the stormriders the next day, in the hopes that they could trade a service for the piece of the crystal that they desired. The note read:
"We respect your privacy and do not want to intrude, therefore, we are writing you this note. We are noble adventurers on a quest for a clear crystal. We have recently slain the red dragon. We would be honored to do you a service in exchange for the clear crystal (see drawing) if you have it or know where we can find it. And then we will be on our way and not bother you again.
As night came, normal watches were set up. The first watch was a bit stormy, but the night was otherwise uneventful.
In the morning, Carric turned into an eagle, flew to the tower, and left the party's note. He gave an annoying shriek before flying off. The female fey, stormed out of the tower and looked around angrily. She noticed the note, picked it up, and reentered the tower. Carric continued to soar, at a safe distance from the tower, and watch.
Some time later, the female again exited the tower. This time she seemed to be prepared for battle, wearing full plate armor and carrying a long spear. Carric backed farther away. The female then flew off in the general direction of the dragon's cave. Carric returned to the party to report.
The female returned, hovering over the party. She sent a lightning bolt down, destroying a small tree near them. The party stood their ground. Carric bowed. The female dropped a small pouch and flew off. Carric picked up the pouch and looked inside. He then pulled out a facet of the crystal, clutched in the severed talon of the red dragon, and a note which read, "You've done me a service by getting rid of the dragon. I don't need this. Go away now." The party quickly moved off, trying to determine which way to go next as they traveled.
As it got late, the party looked for shelter and set up camp. During Carric's watch, a black bear approached the campsite. Carric befriended it, and it was gone before the rest of the party woke up. When they woke up, they commented on the strong odor of bear, but Carric didn't 'fess up and they attributed it to Carric's usual smell and were none the wiser.
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|Copyright © 2009 by Brianna Sollandry <brianna at hambo dot com>||
Ph'nglui mglw'nafh Cthulhu
R'lyeh wgah-nagl fhtagn.