This dream world is something else, I tell you. Pear-searching goblins with unicorn masks, a brave knight who got naked to give his stuff to Mavrikos, who’s now a walking tin can, a cockatrice-wearing snake-lady diva wanting to act with Nasah (of all people!), a lying crocodile man that drinks tea, a paranoid chick that wants to make deals with everyone… Let’s just say that it’s getting weird up in this bitch, even by Samirian standards!
So we’re on the dream road, heading for the Demon Fens. The Fens are basically a lake with an island in the middle, only reachable by a suspended bridge we see over there. After advancing, we hear a sorrowful song, mixed with exaggerated bouts of sobbing. Of course, three quarters up the bridge, there is a Coatl who is sobbing its heart out for some reason. Our resident doting grandmother, Orfée of course runs towards it to console the poor, deadly creature, with Nasah in tow.
Turns out this Coatl was one of the conspirators that killed Sonnorae and it (she? xe?) bitterly regrets it and is simply inconsolable. Between sob sessions, we learn that it gave its treachery token to the Barrow King. The rest of the party waits at the beginning of the bridge, ready to attack at the first sight of treachery… So of course the gods decided to have a little fun at our expense, for instead of a fight with this dangerous creature, we get to see a… group hug. Yep, you’ve read it right. A. Group. Hug.
As I approach the platonic orgy, I hear that the creature warns us not to go to the Barrow up ahead, as only the dead and the mourners can go there safely. Is there anything my trusty ring can’t do??? Ha! I activate my ring of undeath and try to pass them through, with success! I can go ahead without any opposition from that sad bucket! Of course, the rest of the group cannot, as the Coatl wants to keep them (or at least a shoulder to cry on) forever. I try to make them believe that I’m the dead one and these are my mourning posse, but the creature won’t budge. And after Orfée fails her hundredth attempt to reason with this story kin, the group loses patience and the fight is on!
Yep, weird fight, that. The creature first tried to put a sadness spell on me. Twice! On me, Samir Goldentongue! Samir, the optimist! Samir, the happiness incarnate! Ha! Of course that didn’t work!
I also tried my mudball wand again. I really think this spell is good to help our glorified fighters to make our enemies easier to hit and this time I was about sixty percent sure I wasn’t dealing with an illusion, so that was as good a place as any to test out my new strategy as the “support” guy.
I hit the creature right in the face! It worked! It… damnit! The timing sucked! The creature was able to shake off the mud before Hasdrubal could make use of the distraction! “Samir” and “timing” doesn’t seem to like each other, based on my adventuring life so far. (sigh)
Second try was right on time though! The creature is reeling, blind to its surroundings! Hasdrubal (using a flying spell) is swooping in for one of his trademarked super sword hit of wonder. Yesss!
Aaaand his attacked was foiled by none other than Mavrikos, our resident spell recipient, who’s trying to defend his newfound friend from his other friends, so at least he’s not trying to kill us. So instead of an attack from it’s scary polearm, he simply swatted at Hasdy with the nonlethal part, thus giving the Coatl enough time to shake off the mud from its eyes.
Nasah was the hero of this encounter though. His Steal Voice spell prevented the Coatl from casting its spells at us, which greatly diminished the threat it posed to our merry band of (boring) rascals. Orfée’s words finally sunk into the creature and the fight stopped. The Coatl was happy to get rid of us and wanted to resume its mourning, with a charmed Mavrikos refusing to leave his new companion’s side, and the creature refusing to let Mavrikos go.
Oh bloody hell, the talking. And the cajoling! And the theological arguments! All of that to free Mavrikos from the Coatl’s clutches! Gah!
From what I can remember, here are the attempts OTHER than the endless diplomatic attempts from Orfée and Nasah:
Orfée tried a charm person spell on Mavrikos (failed)
I tried to do the same thing (failed)
I tried to convince the Coatl to ask Mavrikos about our secret mission in order to make Mavrikos pass out and shit his pants (thus hoping to break the spell). The gods didn’t understand my intent on this one I believe… Oh well.
Orfée finally was able to brake Mavrikos from the geas by casting a spell that protects against evil, allowing Mavrikos to have another go at fighting it, which worked (finally!). By that point both Hasdrubal and I are gnashing out teeth at the delays we are submitted to by our (too) well-meaning friends (thank the GODS that Rhea isn’t with us today!) and we trigger the fight before Orfée can speak. The fight is on again!
As we are fighting the Coatl, I spot a humanoid howl, with a needle, at Hasdy’s feet. He’s trying to steal something, but I have no idea why he’s attempting to do it with a needle though. No matter. I was able to throw a binding darkness at it and I hit it partially. My lashing could not entangle it to the spot, but it did stopped it from stealing whatever the critter was after as it ran away towards the cliff and jumped.
Meanwhile, we are fighting the Coatl and after I stuck it to the bridge with yet another hit of my binding darkness ability, the Coatl simply… gives up, too depressed to continue the fight. My gloomy glob of goo was the final nail in the coffin. Finally!
Ok, so we make our way to the island and surprisingly enough, it’s a barrow! We see gravestones everywhere and in the middle is a stone sarcophagus with two lit candles on it. Right beside it stands this scary-looking fighter. As he sees us, he screams something at us and sweeps the candles off the sarcophagus. Looks like the candle lights was keeping the dead from rising… This will be fun…
Wow! Just… WOW! Mavrikos and Hasdrubal made REALLY short work of that fighter! Seriously! In the space of 10 heartbeats he was killed! Dead! Stomped to the ground! It was a thing of beauty! Well, at least from where I was “standing”, in the clutches of groping undead hands.
We find the token, along with some loot, and head back to the bridge, ready for a repeat (sigh) of our encounter with the Coatl. This must be our lucky day, for the “melanCOATLy”, as Hasdrubal calls it (damn him and his quick wit! I should’ve thought of that! Wait… Hasdy has a sense of humor!?? Well well well… this will be useful in the future!) pays us no attention, so we’re free to go get another token before Rhea comes back to us and tries to deal on deals that makes other deals non-deals.
So off to the annoying rabbit’s home we go for a good night’s sleep and to replenish our depleted spells.
So we decide to go to the Tic-Toc Man’s home to get his token. Of course, before we enter his home, the scribes start to bicker about what to do. By that time, Hasdrubal is gnashing his teeth with impatience, nearly matching my own, and whispers to me to draw Tic-Toc out with a pouch filled with gold (he wanted a ten thousand gold pieces bribe for the token, which we didn’t have) to make him come out of hiding. Another great idea from our nerdgladiator. The bastard’s on a roll lately!
As Tic-Toc count the gold, Hasdy and I attack him, forcing the other scribes hand into joining the fight, to the great relief of the gods I’m sure.
The fight miiiight have been our demise if we believe Orfée’s reaction during the fight, screaming about some type of Angel/Demon in-between entity of some sort (she even made a great “doom!!!” impression of Rhea). Tic-Toc first started to charm me into going to get him his precious grubs from the Ant Queen and when that didn’t work, it tried to cast a hold spell on me, which did work (dang), so I was stuck there like an idiot during the whole fight I instigated. Good ol’ Samir, that.
Hasdrubal levelled the playing field quite a lot by casting a spell that toughened his skin and ended up wedging Tic-Toc’s sword on himself, leaving the neutral angel type thing weaponless.
Mavrikos made the final killing blow to the creature and we got our hands on yet another token!
While looting the place, I was struck with quite a bit of luck, as I founf the Delithium Matrix that teleporter guy kept pestering me about (something about a debt to him I keep forgetting about), so that leaves me with something less to not worry about. Quite a relief!
We are to harvest Tic-Toc’s eyes, for they belonged to Sonnorae (we have the heart and eyes! We’ll only need to remove the tongue from Bernadette and we’ll be able to make our end of at least one deal in this mess, which should make Rhea happy (if the notion is even familiar to her. Ha!). So I use my magic fork to remove the eyes and I also cut off his head because we’re going to head out to the Ant Queen’s lair to get her token from her (we had a deal to kill tic-Toc in exchange for hers).
Oh oh oh! And we found a hand with keys on Tic-Toc. After careful study, we found out that it acts as a Chime of Opening which can be used around five times per day! So that loot definitely has my name written all over it! Yesss! Another doodad for me!
The meeting with the Ant Queen goes well, so we are now with six tokens and two body parts in our possession! We’re near the completion of our mission, meaning we’ll go back to the Academy soon, with a bigger budget to buy stuff for our next endeavor! Ka-ching!