Thursday, February 6, 2020

196 - “Finding Dragons” - Tonklyn - A Tale of Heroes

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Part 15

In the previous part: 

After the attack by the wood elven patrol, the party of heroes is scattered. Thissraelle, in a panic, uses dimensional magic to teleport randomly away. Eddiwarth manages to get a magical strike off before being overcome by an attacker smothering him with mage’s bane, and being carried away.

This leaves Parith angry and frustrated, Korr badly wounded, with Karendle dangling up in a tree. After freeing each other, they argue and prepare to go tracking after Eddiwarth.

Meanwhile, Thissraelle has found help in a young wood elven nature mage named Illariel. The girl’s cheerful, helpful personality quickly wins Thissraelle’s trust and they soon rejoin the party. They discover that the patrol of wood elves that had attacked them has been themselves attacked by an insurgent squad of high elven soldiers. This is further complicated by the fact that this group of soldiers is led by Illitharin, of the Dragon’s Flame, who was involved in the planning of the cathedral attacks, and has been pursuing Thissraelle (through Karendle) for months. Thissraelle and Parith must both confront their own prejudices and come together to rescue Eddiwarth.

The party pursues the high elves. Karendle approaches them, pretending to have captured Thissraelle. In the ensuing fight, Illitharin is killed, Eddiwarth and Karendle are both wounded, the remaining wood elves freed, and the invading high elves scattered. 

The party then recovers and weathers out a snowstorm in the town of TreeHaven while the wood elven leaders decide if they believe that Thissraelle and Eddiwarth are not spies. During this time, Thissraelle and Eddiwarth come to accept their feelings for each other.

Finally, the wood elves, encouraged by Illariel, welcome them and help equip them and guide them to a mountain trail to find a shrine to the “Dragonfriend”.


196 - “Finding Dragons” - Tonklyn - A Tale of Heroes 

Tonklyn stepped light and quick across the stone floor of the wide, dark hallway. Only a few dim oculi mounted in the walls indicated the angles, doorways, and intersections of this part of the mountain palace. Kirraxal prefers the shadow.  

Tonklyn turned a corner. There was only one more concourse of stairs before he stepped up into a large antechamber. There were other entrances to the this space, but none as prominent. Directly opposite the stairs stood a set of broad and thick wooden double doors. These had been ornately carved and intricately inlaid with silver flourishes in waving geometric patterns flowing upwards to the high arching tips of the entranceway.

Men-at-arms standing at each side of the door stepped forward as they saw Tonklyn exit the stairwell then pushed the great doors open for him. They bowed, but Tonklyn didn’t acknowledge their presence as he strode through the doors into the great hall and the throne room beyond.

The throne room was very tall and wide, and the smoothly carved stone walls echoed the creak of the door and Tonklyn’s shuffling, padded feet. This room, and the whole complex, had been hollowed out centuries before from the solid rock of the interior of the mountain using rock masons and stone-shaping nature mages, all probably slaves. Its high ceiling was held up by thick pillars and buttresses with pointed arches. The light of magical gems floated dimly down through the thick air above. It all reminded Tonklyn of the very cathedrals they had so recently burned down. Except there are no delicate stained glass windows or rows of fancy pews. These carved dragons for pillars are probably not so religious, either.

Since the discovery of the crown and the wealth of the treasure hoard, they had opened up and cleaned out many other areas of the traditional palace of the Dragon Kings. Kirraxal preferred the regal manner of this room for all of his official business. He lay, now, with his legs and tail curled up, on a wide stone gilt dais that was the throne - his throne. His long black neck held his head fully up and alert, even if his body looked casually relaxed.

Tonklyn crossed the long and empty space to his liege master as quickly as he could without breaking into the indignity of a run. As he approached, he saw the ever vigilant figure of the dragon’s guardian, clad in black mail and a black tunic, to Kirraxal’s left. He was one of the dragonbonded. Once a living servant, he had become a dead, but living and unspeaking, unsleeping bodyguard to Kirraxal. The dragon's shadow power bound them together. Tonklyn shuddered. I will never get used to him. 

The Dragon King spoke, “You take your time, don’t you?”

Tonklyn bowed before the dais, then stood again and smiled before taking his place at the right of Kirraxal.

“Be that as it may,” the dragon continued, “your research has proven useful, it seems. If you’ll remember, you suspected there to be more dragons of full-blood, not just drakes, living in the caves and volcanoes of the Emberfire Mountain Front. The dragonbonded that was sent there has found a few.”

Tonklyn smiled and nodded an abbreviated bow. “That is good news. That could help us if we ever hope to overcome those that are currently serving the elves in Emberfire City.”

Kirraxal spat a huge flaming wad in disgust. It splattered great drops of smoking fire onto the floor before the dais. “Dragons serving the two-legs! Really! How far we’ve fallen.”

Tonklyn raised an eyebrow. “True.”

“But no more. I will rally them all. The blood of kings is in them! They’ll turn to me.”

“They will, your majesty!”

“Soon, I’ll send you to negotiate with them, to recruit them. For now, we’ll find out what we can about this dragonfriend man. We’ll find him and end him. The dragonbonded make good assassins, but lousy envoys.”

Hmmm. That’s good to know. “Yes, my liege.”


This continues the story of the heroes in Wynne, in Twynne Rivers, in the world of The Hero's Tale, Family Friendly RPGs. Here's more info on The Hero's Tale, and family friendly RPGing. If you like this story, support us at our Patreon!
Thank you: Chet Cox, Genevieve Springer!

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