When TEPCO reached the town toting spider heads as a symbol of our victory, the stick up Aston’s butt shook loose. He was very pleasant. He even told us of a tower somewhere off to the southwest in the fog that we might want to have a look at. Apparently everything around it is ancient and unnatural — a forest with trees that never die. I’ll drink that koolaid. I like koolaid.
Aston gave Chase a piece of studded leather for protection and asked us if we’d left the bridge in tact. Our resident diplomat, Petter, said “Are you calling us fat?”
Silvano and Grisha offered us free food and hospitality. (Grisha did NOT offer to show me his bed. Which was disappointing. … Only because I’m very curious about the conditions surrounding such a creature, of course.) I determined that the bread is NOT poison.
We were all set to settle in, and I hoped to sneak off and have a bit of a chat with some townsfolk, when little Margarie accosted us.
“The village is under attack!” she cried. “Alcia is here! You must kill her!”
Well, no one else appeared to be coming to the rescue. By some terrible oversight on our part (or, as I like to think, because little girls mumble), we all failed to realize that Margarie was speaking of an ancient dragon and…um, pointing to a tree.
Again, TEPCO exchanged silent sideways glances. (This time Hansel was in on it.) We decided to play along.
I decided that, if we meant to slay a dragon, we needed a sword. I would have used mine, but even I know you don’t mix kids and sharp objects. So, I grabbed a tree branch and declared it Doris the Bloodied!
Tali tried to bluff the child, telling her we were all dragon slayers…but the girl was sharp. She didn’t buy it for a hot second, and “killed” Tali for her trouble.
Hansel, in his second insightful moment of the day (2-1), realized kids like to be involved. He told Margie SHE would have to be the one to do the slaying. Apparently this was a thumbs up, because no fireballs came for Hansel. Balty, not to be outdone, pointed out that Margie probably looked up to the adventurers and wanted a role model.
So…I tried to make that happen. I guess telling her the nostril is the dragon’s weak spot doesn’t count. I was promptly fireballed.
From my place on the ground, I heard Hansel mutter under his breath that he was pretty sure Margie was on the dragon’s side. Children and demons being what they are, that made perfect sense. “The town will burn!” I hissed from the other side of death.
Margie’s face lit up. Chase offered the sword and Margie charged. She SLAYED the dragon! And got hurt in the process. Because kids are weak. Off she went, sniveling into her secret hideout. We followed, purely out of concern (and not because we were worried about the state of our free room and board.) Little Margie recovered quickly…and ho! Offered us loot. Sweet kid.
The coin she gave us looks very, very old. I almost felt bad about taking it, but she was so earnest, and I like old, potentially valuable things, so we didn’t make a fuss. The coin is made of a strange metal, depicting a turtle on one side and a phoenix on the other. For good measure, we tucked it in the bag of concealment and called it a night.
Now I’m off to entertain the folks at the Drunken Bard. A few rounds of “Who Am I?” should go over quite nicely.
Until next time,