Rise of the Forgotten Kings

Session 42
Bringing Down the Mood(eey)

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Surrounded by disgusting meat-zombies and the Dread Necromancer himself, Mad Moodey, Team Trust stands back-to-back in preparation for battle. Moodeey seems confident of his impending victory as he orders his undead to attack, but he isn’t aware of our heroes’ new trump card…

With a dark grin, the once-Good cleric Jilqwyn raises her hands as dark purple magic begins flowing from her moose-headed pendant. “Maybe you haven’t heard, Moodeey,” she says, “but I have started dabbling in the dark arts as well. Behold!” And with that, she uses her new Bone Knight necromancy to turn Moodeey’s own undead creations against him, evening the tide of the battle just enough to give Team Trust the upper hand. With one powerful blast from his Staff of Transmutation, Yu’in disintegrates Moodeey, thrusting his body into a furnace, seemingly killing him. The undead crumble, and Team Trust victoriously emerges from the Suckling Swine, although Itto is none-too-pleased at Jil’s newfound dark powers.

Returning with the ingredients needed for Slink to alchemize a cure for the Ghoul Fever plague, our adventurers return to Lady Loraaga’s medical tent. Along the way, Jil uses Remove Disease to cure herself of her own Ghoul Fever, but Lute, still infected, opts not to waste the spell and to wait for the mass cure. What could go wrong??

Upon arriving back at the tents, they are shocked to discover that Loraaga is not there, but rather her Bailiff, the cleric Prosadi Charster. After a brief interrogation using Jil’s Candle of Truth, Charster reveals that Loraaga (as well as Itto’s new fanboy Smeg) has been kidnapped by members of the Red Knives and brought back to…you guessed it…the sewers.

While Slink begins on the cure and Jil tends to the sick and wounded, the rest of Team Trust rushes to the sewer, where they remember seeing the headquarters of the Red Knives. When they arrive at the front door, they realize that they need a password to enter, and their one Red Knife member (Slink) is back at the hospital…Never a gnome around when you need one, amirite?!

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Session 41
Ghoulghoulghoul

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Diving still deeper into the sewer world, Team Trust, led by Itto, enter a subterranean world with idol-like statues of a Half-Orc who looks surprisingly like our paladin friend. Upon entering the area, dozens of Mongrelfolk immediately turn and gasp at the sight of Itto, bowing and proclaiming him the god who will lead them to the surface to murder the Overlanders.

Itto, fighting his desire to out himself as not-a-god, embraces the role in order to try and steer his new fandom away from their violent ways of killing everyone ever. They don’t exactly seem to get it. But they are willing to lend their aid to help our heroes out of the sewer, providing their best scout Smegma to lead the way. Along the way, Itto attempts to teach Smeg how to fight (Smeg’s weapon of choice is a crude nail at the end of a plank of wood) and to search for peaceful solutions rather than vicious maiming. His lessons don’t go too well.

Smeg leads the team to a room full of Octoroks, congregating around piles of feces and snacking away. They seem unconcerned with Team Trust’s presence, who stealth-fully divert the river of poop pouring into the room to force the creatures to move their feeding frenzy. This reveals a lever which opens the door out of the sewer. Finally.

Climbing the ladder into a LoTown factory, our intrepid adventurers discover a wounded man named Bryan, who says he had been bitten by strange monsters. As if on cue, a horde of Ghouls burst in and stage an assault on our heroes. While the group is able to fend them off, two of their party, Jil and Lute, are bitten. Bryan explains that the plague that has been terrorizing the Quarantine District is a result of these Ghoul Bites, and that Jil and Lute are now infected with Ghoul Fever. If they don’t cure themselves, they will eventually turn. No one knows the source of this outbreak, nor how to fully cure it. Their best hope, however, is Loraaga’s medical tents, and Bryan agrees to lead us there.

On the walk to the medical facility, Bryan explains that in the aftermath of the Crimson Wedding, the Duke (who Team Trust thought had been killed but was somehow still alive) decreed The Pack a band of terrorists, and after their murderous activities, Draken’s Point would join forces with the Human capitol of Gelid City in a holy war against all non-humans, since only humans were believed to descend from dragons and be pure of blood. Team Trust knew now that not only must they escape the city, but also warn the other kingdoms of Dracarys’ plot to destroy all non-humans.

Upon arriving at Loraaga’s tent, Slink charms the Lady into helping them find a way out of the city. Flattered (and perhaps a bit aroused?) by Slink’s advances, the beautiful Loraaga says that first the heroes must find the source of the Ghoul Fever outbreak and deliver a cure. With no other options, the group sets out for their only lead: the Suckling Swine Tavern, where strange meat provided by the “Lord of Reapers” has been getting people rather sick…

The eerie little bar seems empty at first, until a chubby woman named Ms. Tovitt appears, saying that she and her husband Bleeney Flodd run a simple restaurant serving “the best meat pies in LoTown”, and that Team Trust “absolutely must try some!” They reluctantly agree, and are disgusting to find several lopped-off fingers and the like inside the meat. They demand to be shown to the meat freezer in the basement, and to their surprise, Ms. Tovitt agrees.

Slink unceremoniously shoves the old woman down the flight of steps, but she picks herself up and laughs it off, and is then joined by her husband, Bleeney. Seeing the human flesh that is clearly being turned into meat pies, Team Trust springs into action, swiftly murdering the proprietors of the establishment. Assuming their work done, they head to the exit, but are blocked by none other than Mad Moodeey, who uses his necromancy to revive not only the elderly couple, but the racks of human corpses waiting to be turned into pies…

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Session 40
Hail Hydra!

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Next on the sewer-mobile is a run-in with the shifty dwarf salesman Murk, who claims to have incredible magical items at his disposal, and gives Yu’in his card, saying to call him anytime they are willing to make an…“interesting” trade. Murk then disappears.

The group moved on to discover a hallway blocked with a pile of actual shit. They maneuver around it and find two adjacent doors. Behind the first door, they overhear an army of Wererats conspiring against the Overworld, planning to infest LoTown. The second door is locked, and upon trying to force it open with his Mountain Hammer, Itto is sprayed in the face with acid.

Quinn, ever the idea man, promptly turns Slink into a small bug to stealthily invade the Wererat room and investigate. Crawling his way in, Slink discovers a hidden lever at the back of the room and pulls it, opening the other door. Slink teleports out, giving Quinn the time he needs to Hold Portal on the doorway, trapping the Wererats inside for the moment.

Moving to the next room, Team Trust sees several crates with unknown contents being guarded by a vicious Hydra. Devising a clever plan, Slink tells Quinn to undo his held portal while the rest of the heroes hide around a corner. Using Ghost Sounds to throw his voice inside the Hydra’s room, Slink convinced the Wererats to run straight into the trap, where Quinn again uses Hold Portal to trap the creatures in with the Hydra, who promptly eats them all.

While they waited for the monster to finish its meal, Team Trust continues to wander, finding the Red Knives HQ (warded by a trap and a password), which they ignore for the time being. They move on to a final room, where several earth elementals (shit monsters, really) guard a hidden lever. Slaughtering the elementals swiftly, our adventurers use the lever to open the doors to the next portion of the dungeon before heading back to the Hydra room.

Realizing the beast is too big to escape the room, Team Trust skillfully picks the Hydra off from behind the doorway using ranged attacks, and enters to discover an enormous cache of drugs…which, of course, most of them partake in. Slink, the resident druggie, warns them against doing too much, and stores away this amazing mother-load for later use.

The drug-addled team ventures on through the newly-opened doors, but what new horrors would lie in their path?!

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Session 39
Beware the Jabberwock...

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Continuing on through the sewer, all the other survivors murders, Team Trust finds a room with hideous monstrous centipedes, which they quickly dispatch and find a note:

" Squirm: we need the girl, don’t kill her. She’s getting our insurance policy. Once we have it, kill her and the Red Knives."

Slink quickly identified the “she” as his missing love, Myst, who he now knows to be alive and somewhere in Draken’s Point. Finally revealing to his teammates that his hidden reason for going to the wedding was merely an excuse to get them to Draken’s Point so he could locate Myst, Slink takes some flack from his annoyed party members.

Once they set aside their anger, Team Trust moves on to another room in the maze that is this section of the sewer dungeon. In it, they find a table with several place-settings. They enter and are beckoned by an ethereal voice to sit, which they do. Suddenly, a phantasmal butler appears, bidding them all welcome to his tea party!

What ensues is a chaotic mess of a challenge, wherein the ghost-butler asks the group random questions about table etiquette, punishing them for getting answers wrong by having them drink from one of the colored teapots, each with varying effects. Finally, the group passes all the tests, and the ghost vanishes, leaving only a strange ring and a key to a small room to the side, in which they group finds and dispatches a hag and several ogre bodyguards.

It is there that they find a note from King Valiant the Great, the Dragonborn: “Our draconic ancestors have all but wiped each other out. The Oppressors are not gone forever, yet I sheathe my sword. Seek out my Sword of Dragonsbane deep in the treasury of my keep.” With a new lead as to the location of the legendary Sword of Dragonsbane, the team sets off through the sewer with renewed vigor, unaware of the horrors that lay ahead…

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Session 38
All Vamped Up with No Place to Go

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Rushing to the aid of their fallen comrade, the group is astonished to find Quinn’s appearance somehow altered; his once bronzed skin is now a pale reflection of what it once was, and his hair is slicked black with a white streak. He also seems to be wearing black eye makeup, and…maybe some glitter?

His eyes flutter open, and he sits up, seemingly unperturbed by the changes. Suspicious but without time to talk, his allies help him up and carry him back to the room from whence he came to confront the evil Dread Wraith that slew him, knowing its power over him would fade if they destroyed it. Now outmatched 6-to-1, the Dread Wraith is disposed of, although Quinn seems no different.

Continuing on, the group encounters a room full of flying light-creatures which Rayne identifies as Willow Wisps, and flees in lieu of fighting these elusive creatures. In yet another room, our heroes discover a vast pit with many dead bodies. It is not until a grate opens above them and yet another corpse is thrown down from above that they realize this is a sort of “dumping ground” from the dungeons above. Polymorphing into a bat, Quinn flies up the grate and finds several guards keeping watch over a dungeon, and beckons the group up. Slink follows suit, and using his rogue-like sneak attacks and new teleportation abilities, slits the guards’ throats.

The group is startled to discover a bound prisoner in the dungeon, who identifies himself as the Raven, the man who had saved them from the Red Knives before. They free him, and he reveals that the name “Raven” is more of a symbol that refers to the idea of vigilante vengeance than a particular person. He departs, but not before pointing the way out of the sewer/dungeon. Perhaps they would be out sooner than they thought…but not really.

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Session 37
On the Run: Aftermath of the Crimson Wedding

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Back in the sewers, Team Trust leads the group of 16 survivors away from the horror that was the Crimson Wedding. Among them the heroes find Isara’s handmaiden, who reveals a terrible discovery: on her way out of the reception hall, she stumbled upon the body of the dead Princess Isara, whose heart was being eaten by her new husband, King Rhegar. Horrified and confused, the team realizes that they must continue to move forward, lest Dracarys’ forces catch them.

They corral the survivors, and Itto manages to break one of the barred pathways and lead the survivors further into the sewer. Quinn hears a familiar voice from the other direction, and trudges through the slime to another corridor, where he sees Archibald, lying on the ground, seemingly dead.

Suddenly, Quinn is cut off from the group by a dark wall of magic, and Slink turns to try and call out to him. But it’s too late. Within the room, Quinn is confronted by five cloaked figures who whisper, “It should have been you” as the body of “Archie” rises up and turns into a demonic Dread Wraith, who slays Quinn almost instantly. Through a mysterious deal with the moose-headed god Cas, however, Quinn is spared. Yet somehow…changed.

Before the group can get to their friend, they hear the screams of the survivors as a giant albino crocodile emerges from the room where Itto was leading them, and proceeds to eat several people. A vicious underwater battle ensues, with both Jil and Slink being consumed by the beast, rescued finally by Itto slashing through the monster’s stomach, freeing his friends, and murdering the ancient croc.

Exhausted, Team Trust turns around and sees Quinn’s seemingly lifeless corpse on the ground.

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Session 36
The Crimson Wedding

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The pieces finally in place, the wedding between Rhegar and Isara finally gets into full swing. Yu’in, having overheard evil Lord Dracarys’ plans to commit mass genocide at the reception after the 4th course, meets with the rest of the members of Team Trust and warns them of the plan. Slink and Rayne, still posing as wedding caterers, attempt to poison Dracarys’ first course, but Dracarys’ enormous black-armored bodyguard, Blackheart, stops the incoming food.

Quinn, now hiding in plain sight among the mask-wearing wedding guests, spies Rhegar and Isara at the head table, with Dracarys nearby with Blackheart. Another table seats the members of the Racial Council (one representative from each race present). Something about the Human representative gives Quinn a chilling feeling, but he can’t place his finger on why. The second course is served.

The commotion turns to an uproar when a wagon wheels in with the words " Harry the Horse and Mr. Kyte‘s Traveling Family Fun-Tyme Circus!" scrawled on it. Out jumps a strange horse-man who announces himself as Harry the Horse, and assures the crowd that they are about to see some of the most amazing creatures they have ever witnessed. From out of the cart come Harry’s three “freaks”: an albino monkey, who does strange acrobatics using an odd hand-held machine which fires what appear to be sling bullets, performs first, and the crowd erupts into laughter. The third course comes out…

A small, meek-looking approaches next, wrapped in chains and bindings. He holds a potion to his lips and drinks, and moments later, begins growing and transforming into a hulking beast, which proceeds to fly into a rage and nearly attack several guests. Harry the Horse uses an electric zapper to contain the beast, who slowly calms down as the fourth course arrives.

Communicating through a Message spell, Team Trust frantically tries to figure out how to avoid catastrophe. As the food arrives, a strange jack-o-lantern creature comes from the circus cart.

“This is it!” announces Yu’in. “We need a diversion…We need…fire!”

The group springs into action. Rayne and Slink use the kitchen stoves to start a fire, which Quinn and Yu’in add their own magical fireworks to, creating a general panic in the reception hall as the flames creep out into the main seating area. People begin running, but as they do, several figures come crashing in through the windows and start attacking the guests. It appears the entire Racial Council is the first to perish, save for the Human, who unmasks and reveals himself to be Mad Moodeey. The man who seems to be leading the new arrivals yells, “Members of The Pack! Kill them all!” A quick Knowledge check by Lute reveals that The Pack is supposed to made up of peaceful animal rights activists…so why were they murdering innocents?!

Team Trust joins the fray, fending off The Pack as well as Blackheart, who corners Lute. Slink confronts The Pack leader, who he unmasks to reveal his old lover and now hated enemy, Jasper! After a brief scuffle, Jasper vanishes. During the battle, Rayne notices her old tutor from her time in Elven royalty, Victus, fighting against The Pack as well.

Yu’in turns just in time to see Rhegar escaping out a back exit with Isara, while Dracarys does some subtle magic (which no one seems to notice amidst the chaos) and creates a giant dragon made of fire which blocks the main exit. Slink runs back into the kitchen and reveals his identity to Torblud, desperately asking for a way out. Torblud, in terror, explains that the kitchen has an emergency exit, and Team Trust abandons their fight to help usher as many party guests out as possible.

Screams of terror and pain echo through the hall as Team Trust, assisted by Torblud, scramble through the secret kitchen exit, down into the sewers…

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Session 35
Wedding Preparations

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“Extra! EXTRA! Read all about it!”

A lone newsie shouts among the crowds of LoTown as Team Trust makes its way to the gates of HiTown with Lady Narissa, their escort and the newly-appointed head of the Entertainment District (due to the untimely demise of her aunt, Lady Battlebeard). The newspaper tells of a new Lord Professor crowned in the Gnome kingdom, who Slink suspects may be his father Scroopel. There is also rumor of a new contender in the fighting pits of HiTown, an elven prince with great battle prowess…

As the group debates the best way to get into the wedding, they arrive at the gates, and upon showing their entry passes from winning the tournament, are instructed to step forward to be “branded” with a magical mark which will incapacitate them if they break the laws of HiTown or otherwise cause problems. Only Lute is able to bypass this, with some clever wordplay and perhaps a bribe or three.

They enter HiTown and, after a bit of exploration, are confronted by Graff, Lord of the Entertainment District and head of the Temple of Koord’s upcoming fighting pit tournament, to take place during the Royal Wedding. He demands to know which of the team is meant to compete, and, devising a quick plan, Yu’in, Itto, and Lute step forward and make their ways to the arena with Graff.

While Itto and Lute chat with various combatants, including the famous Shazam Brothers, as well as the elven prince who plans to win the entire tournament by himself, Yu’in invisibly sneaks off and travels inside the Hall of Pantheon to witness the union of Rhegar and Isara. Directly to Rhegar’s right is the evil Lord Dracarys, and the ceremony is presided over by strangely-clad priests, who speak in strange tongues of the Lord Tiamet, the draconic demi-god. Once the vows are made, the procession makes its way out, and Yu’in follows behind (still invisibly), overhearing as Dracarys says to a black-armored leviathan, “Kill them all after the fourth course.” And as he turns his head 180 degrees around and winks at the invisible Yu’in, adds, “Starting with the dwarves.” Yu’in rushes out to find the rest, and together with Itto and Lute, use Battlebeard’s ticket to make their way into the reception hall.

Meanwhile, Quinn, ever the highborn, dons his royal outfit and poses as a wedding planner at the gates of the Hall of Pantheon, conning his way in and eventually sneaking into the kitchen by means of a rolling food cart. Slink and Rayne, disguising themselves as wedding caterers, enter the kitchen and find Slink’s friend and head-chef Torblud, who doesn’t seem to recognize him. Not wanting to blow their cover, Slink and Rayne rush around the kitchen, in a hilarious attempt to pass themselves off as cooks, while Quinn invisibly makes his way into the reception hall and sees everyone wearing masks. He schmoozes with the revelers and attempts to gather information, when suddenly, a strange man announces that it is now time for the amazing " Harry the Horse & Mr. Kyte ’s Traveling Circus"!

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Session 34
Mortal Kombat

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" Itto…My Son…Open your eyes…"

A white glow surrounds the Half-Orc paladin, as he opens his eyes to see his adoptive father, Pratantus Sunwhisper, peering over him.

“Wh-where am I?” Itto asks.

“You have ascended from the material plane for your final reward. However, you have a choice: stay here in heavenly paradise with me, or return to your embittered struggle in the mortal realm. You may use this option once and once only, my son. Make your choice.”

Struggling with the thought of resting in peace for eternity versus returning to Tarragonia to aid his friends, the noble self-sacrificing Itto opts to take the harder route and return to save the world.

Awakening with a newfound scar on his head, Itto rises again and greets his friend. Slink, seeming to fight back angry tears, beats on the paladin, ordering him to “never do that to me again!”

Quickly hiding the corpse of Lady Battlebeard and looting her body for powerful armor and weapons, as well as a coveted wedding invitation, Team Trust barely has enough time before the doors opening and the crowds enter the Bloody Goat on their way to the fighting pits.

First to enter is the sketchy Kevan Serpenthian, Lord of the Stone Gate (prison) District, with his Bailiff, the Half-Orc Janis Gorn. Lady Narissa whispers to the group that Kevan, an outcast of Boccob’s School of Magic and worshiper of the Evil Wee Jas, is widely mistrusted by the other heads of LoTown, and has been rumored to be experimenting on his prisoners. Lute takes an immediate dislike to him.

Next is the stunningly beautiful Lady Loraaga Tarmicos of the Quarantine District, with her Bailiff Prosadi Charster. Slink’s jaw drops as he sees her, and attempts to flirt with the woman, who, Narissa explains to the group, is not terribly well-respected. Loraaga seems amused with the charismatic gnome, who swears allegiance to her in the coming tournament.

Speaking of: the heroes are ushered into the fighting pits for their first battle: a bout with a group of weak-ass Northern Goblins. They prove no match for the heroes, although the second battle against a group of mechanical clockwork dogs is a bit more of a challenge.

As the battles rage on, the group notices Kevan eyeing them with an almost voracious look on his creepy face. After the second battle, Slink blows a kiss to Loraaga, who seems genuinely taken aback. But before the gang can celebrate, Kevan stands up and performs a series of magical gestures, as the dead bodies in the fighting pit all seem to coalesce together into a giant blob monster: The Gibbering Mouther, a hideous abomination capable of rendering its foes confused and useless, due to its terrifying gibbering (the voices of hundreds of corpses rambling in unison like some kind of zombie filibuster).

Despite most of the team being unable to fight, our adventurers are eventually able to best the creature, and are declared winners of the tournament, thus given free access to HiTown and a spot in the larger tournament, to take place during the wedding for the entertainment of the guests. They emerge victorious, unaware that the real battle is just around the corner…

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Session 33
Draken's Point: The City of Intrigue

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Several Knowledge and Gather information checks later, Team Trust begins to piece together the complex political layout of Draken’s Point:

- Baron Highcastle has been promoted to Duke of all of Draken’s Point, having brought about the union of King Rhegar of the human kingdom, and Princess Isara of the elves.
- HiTown and LoTown are each divided into 3 Districts, each ruled over by a Lord (or Lady) with a Bailiff as second-in-command

After a night’s rest, the group is jolted awake by a harsh rapping on the door. Quickly disguising themselves as high-end travelers, they open the door and are greeted by LoTown’s Entertainment District Bailiff, Narissa Sapphire. Flanked by several guards, Narissa announces that she was sent by her boss, Entertainment District head Lady Magstein Battlebeard, to arrest the outlaws causing havoc in town. Disguised and ever-the-bluffers, Lute and Slink try to convince the woman that they have no idea who these people are. But of course, Itto’s paladin instincts (and general inability to deceive anyone ever) take over, and he reveals that he is in fact one of the outlaws she is looking for, much to the rest of the team’s face-palm-y dismay.

Her reaction, however, is not what they expected. Shocked, Narissa reveals herself to be a paladin as well, and generally doesn’t approve of Battlebeard’s (who also happens to be her aunt) arrest-first-ask-questions-never tactics. After much diplomacy and negotiating, Team Trust convinces Narissa that their mission to get to the wedding and save the world is, in fact, of fairly vital importance, and implores her help in getting to the wedding. She explains that there are only three ways into HiTown: a) an invitation (seems logical, right?); b) entrance into Boccob’s School of magic (which would only get them into HiTown, where they would be trapped in the school); or c) by winning the LoTown Fighting Pit Tournament and earning a spot in the coveted HiTown Tournament at the Temple of Koord.

Seeing this as their only option, the group asks if they can be given a last-minute slot in the LoTown tournament. Narissa says that she will “work her magic” and make it so. En route to the battlegrounds, Narissa explains that most of the fighters pick a Lord or Lady to fight in honor of, as the three LoTown Lords will be in attendance. While the logical choice seems to be Battlebeard, Slink is intrigued by the mention of the alluring Lady Loraaga Tarmicos, the wise and noble human head of the Quarantine District. He insists they fight for her, and the others reluctantly agree.

Before arriving at the fighting pits, the group manages to quell a riot over some chickens, then head over to the Bloody Goat tavern, the entrance-way “lobby” to the pits themselves. They are greeted there by the dwarf Lady Battlebeard herself, who ponders on her Bailiff’s plea to allow these warriors into the fight. She picks Itto out of the lineup and pulls one of her constituents, Thomas, from his seat at the bar and demands that to prove his worth, Itto execute Thomas in cold blood.

Unwilling to murder a helpless unarmed man, Itto instead turns his great sword on Battlebeard, provoking a bar scuffle that ends with Battlebeard lodging her ax into Itto’s skull, killing him, and Narissa turning on her murderous aunt and slaying her.

The group surrounds the lifeless body of their most noble ally, stricken and almost too shocked to grieve. But then, they see a white light…

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