We hear the sound of low horn call out in a long low blast, it sounds like it is coming from where the dragon originated, maybe they are attempting to recall the beast.
Our plan is to harry the threshold thieves. We move into the hills, fumbling a bit trying to figure out which way to go. Alaric points out some tracks of what appear to be very large men.
Coy returns telling of around 5 giants in the group we are following, they make is much easier for them to carry the threshold, this dashes our hopes that they will be forced to move slowly, the giants gives them the ability to move much more quickly than we thought they would be able to.
Dom tells of another group that is moving up behind us, they also have a couple giants among them, we are sandwiched between the two, this could get interesting. Once they find the dragon, they will know we are here and will be looking for us.
We spend the night secure among the cliffs overlooking a ravine that we expect will fill with our enemy. This provides what is probably the best scenario for us to attempt to take the threshold. We have time to set up what we can to prepare our ambush, hoping to whittle their numbers down enough that our swords can handle the rest.
Setting some poles ahead of time, Cilka is able to cast webbing across the whole far side of the ravine, corralling them to come through to us in a more concentrated grouping, optimally setting themselves up to be targeted by more of our spells.
We start off hiding behind the rock outcroppings up on the path along the ledge of the ravine. As the enemy comes into view we gather together to be hasted by Cilka, then spread out, most heading down the steep slope to the ravine floor, Dom and Keth stay above, Keth to cast spells without interruption and Dom moving around the enemy so he can get behind them to flank.
The giants make it through the noxious cloud of gas that Keth has cast in their midst, many of the smaller ones succumb to the fumes. The giants lumber forward, moving much more quickly than their ungainly gate looks like it would allow.
A stream of fire shoots out across the ravine, it is not originating from Cilka like we are used to, it lashes into the webbing that is holding them back and corralling them, it looks like they will not be slowed for long. Cilka retaliates with her own ball of fire, taking advantage of their condensed numbers while she can.
Again, some go down, the larger stay up, and more come into view replacing the few we’ve managed to take out so far, we are in it for the long haul this time.
I scramble down the steep path to the ravine floor, we are facing an intimidating line of three giants facing off against Coy, Gertie, Star and Keth. I finally make it down the slope and over to the giants, who have been joined by their well armored commander, at least he had been shouting out orders, after my sword meets his chest, he’s not shouting anything anymore. Unfortunately I am not able to carry the blow through to the giant next to him.
Suddenly the giant I failed to hit freezes in place, apparently struck immobile from some friendly spell. Alaric slashes into the middle giant, repeatedly opening wide gashes, toppling the great beast with a thunderous crash.
Arrows fly thick through the air, another giant is down with a thud the shakes the ground, the rest of their number are quickly moving up on us. Another regular sized armored guy appears suddenly in front of me, in between me and the newest giant to come up to us, it is in my way, but before I can even ready a swing to remove him, Gertie slides in and he is no longer a problem. Now we just face this new giant, he is a different looking beast, with demonic armaments and nasty bone helmet that looks to have once been the skull and spine of an actual demon.
A huge ball of fire goes arcing overhead and blasts into the cliff above, I can only hope my companions waging their war from on high were under enough cover to weather that fire storm.
The massive demonic giant lashes out at us with its long spear, reaching farther and with more weight behind the blow than should have been possible. Gertie is hit hard, I see her go down just as the swing comes back around and slams into me, that is the last thing I remember for a short time…
I come to in a world of chaos. There is fighting all around and above me. I hear a pop as air is displaced and the familiar growl of the hound archon, a welcome sound to my beleaguered ears. I clamber to my feet, a moment to take stock, and I am running toward the last few bad guys left standing.
As I engage I take a few hits from the swordsmen in front of me, nearly falling again. Alaric has my back and instantly I feel better. Coy, Gertie and the archon take it to the archers. Alaric and I dispatch the remaining infantry and Coy continues his assault on the sorcerer. The archers decide to surrender and after some interrogation they tell us that the threshold has been taken to the temple on the mountain.
We decide to head out towards the temple, opting to heal and rest overnight and then assault in the morning. Traveling all day, we near the tall mountain that seemed to be the destination of the column of men and giants, but we know that the group hunting us is now nearly upon us.