(Epilogue: The Forest Maker)
On this episode of the Walker Kings…
Our intrepid heroes finding themselves in something of a pickle, they stare down the five-headed dragon resulting from the ritual performed by the sorcerer-queen Abalach-Re. But after a grueling fight, the Giantkillers manage to… well, kill another giant. Although they didn’t really kill her so much as weaken her, and she wasn’t so much a giant as she was a gigantic creature. Also, it didn’t hurt that Alderun luckily picked up a dragon-slaying sword just before they encountered Abalach-Re. Convenient!
Anyway, Abalach-Re got pretty sick of eating balls and having sharp things stuck into her, so the ritual failed and she reverted to humanoid form. “Zounds, foiled again!” she said (possibly not her actual words). She suddenly turned tail and was about to fly away, but Kensidan wouldn’t have it; he attacked her with a parting Blood Pulse. Abalach-Re, wounded as she was, didn’t take kindly to this unsporting gesture, which is why she went right back down and proceeded to open a sorcerer queen-sized can of whoopass on the party. After making quick work of Kensidan, she tried to take possesion of Alderun’s brand new weapon… and she might’ve gotten away with it, too, if it wasn’t for that meddling dray, and that blasted changeling! Using a newly-found flying carpet, the pair swooped in to grab the sword while making a swift escape.
But Abalach-Re wasn’t done! After picking up the Standard of Battle, she flew straight after the two who escaped. But Visarion got an idea, and took the sword from Cypher. “Go on, Cypher. I just got an idea. Take Renegade’s almost-corpse and get away,” said the templar. Cypher nodded silently (as Cypher tends to do) and let Visarion down. V then took the unused potion of transformation he’d been saving (from that one time with the old hag; see relevant writeup), took a gulp, and proceeded to go for the jugular. The next dray Abalach-Re encountered was actually not Visarion, but was in fact the fifteen-foot humanoid form of Dregoth! Wielding the sword, no less!
Abalach-Re gasped, for what must have been a good five minutes at least, because that gave Cypher the window he needed to salvage the rest of the party. He also managed to track down Bjorn, who’d
started running once he knew he could not win totally stood his ground to the very end, and was just recuperating under a tree. Meanwhile, Visarion as Dregoth (or Visargoth, if you will) was staring down Abalach-Re, and moved as if to finish her off. That caused the sorcerer queen to flee in a panic. Another threat repelled vanquished! Huzzah!
The forest where they fought was marked by Renegade as the forest he’d be protecting. “Sure,” the party responded nonchalantly. Moreover, upon thorough inspection of Kensidan’s corpse, the party realized that he’d left the mortal realm in peace. After struggling through hardship and much personal conflict, he’d found peace in death. Cypher looked down at his companion and closed Kensidan’s eyelids for the final time. He then proceeded to loot the corpse.
Soon after the fight with Abalach-Re, the party was visited by Nibor and his Djinn friends. After getting up to date on the happenings so far, Nibor offered to help the team fill out their most recent job opening by introducing them to an Efreet, who they accepted… for now. Will this new member add to the party’s dynamic, or will he break up their chemistry? Will he help the party fulfill their goals, or will he use the party for his own dark purposes? Only time will tell!
While the group discussed with Nibor, the ship was halted by a lone dray. It took Visarion some time to recognize him, but once he did, V swooped down from the ship and knelt. Before him stood Dregoth in his dray form, and he quickly promoted the templar to 27th scale. He followed with a proposition for the group: he would assist them in taking down the sorcerer kings and queens, and each party member would take a city-state of their own. In exchange, Dregoth would be ruler above them all.
Before the request was even accepted or declined, everyone started divying up the city-states and deciding who would rule which one (naturally). In addition, Axana recognized the change that was occuring in Visarion, and she knew she could use him to replace the gods she lost. That is why she asked to be promoted to a position similar to a templar (of Visarion!), and V agreed, on the condition that they wait until he was powerful enough. So the deal went quite well for everyone… except for Absalom, that is! He was pissed off that Dregoth promised Raam to V, so Dregoth decided that the two 27th scale templars should fight it out, and the winner would take Raam. Absalom then swoops in for the kill, but the party is ready!
Can they defeat this dastardly dray descending to defend his dreams of domination? We’ll find out next month! So be sure to tune in to our next episode: You’re Only a Dray Away!