Kingmaker

The Stag Lord Falls

Where are the elves?

​Today, we battle the famed Stag Lord. The plan, apparently, is to subdue those of us that the bandits would perceive as too much of a threat, chiefly me. It is no matter. I could probably slay the entire company without aid, but I know that it is good to fight together. I do not want to end up like Markas.
​For myself, I feel like this subtlety is unnecessary. I prefer a straight fight. But I suppose I will go along with it for the sake of the noisy mage and the skinny human.
​We march up to the door of the fortress and Martin uses his silver tongue to gain access while Phe’lyx and Valyn sneak around the back. I do not believe that I have ever seen Phe’lyx engage in a fair fight….
​The first thing that I notice inside the door is the corpse of that sniveling bandit, Pyfrin. He had no pride in life, and it seems they will not allow him dignity in death either. He hangs suspended above us on the wall, mutilated as if in some misguided warning. Surely they know by now that one such as I will not be scared away by a bit of blood.
​Almost as soon as we enter the camp, that villain Dovan steps out from the back of the fortress and blows our cover. But that is unimportant. I came here ready for a fight. I tear off my manacles, grab my weapons from the ground, and prepare for glory.
​And, to add to my pleasure, that brute who killed my mule chooses that moment to join the fight. I am going to enjoy killing him. Add that chance of revenge to the glory of slaying a dragon, and I know that this is going to be a good day. I say a silent prayer to Angradd for strength.
​And then that blasted silver dragon breathes a mist over us and I slump to the ground with a clatter. My last conscious thought is one of shame to be felled so early in battle. I have failed the memory of my grandfather.
​I come to in the midst of a battle. I stand and survey my surroundings, where I’m faced with a choice. I can destroy the beast of a man who insulted me previously, or I can attack the overgrown reptile that shamed me. I notice that Martin, also, has gone down, but the rest of the party is fighting furiously.
​I remember that the druid requested that we don’t attack the wyrm, but it became fair game when it attacked me. That was its first mistake….
​Across the room I can see the bandit that my companions captured and released has joined the fight…on our side. That’s a relief. I had thought that releasing him was a terrible idea, but perhaps I was mistaken. He appears to be a valuable ally.
​In front of me, the sun-worshipper drops, seemingly unprovoked. I heighten my guard, certain that something is happening here that I do not understand.
​Out of the corner of my eye I see the dragon tear out the throat of one of the bandits. Maybe I would be better to attack the hulking human before slaughtering the lizard….
​I thought that those elves would be here by now to back us up, I think to myself. I’m not surprised by the weak one’s absence – he’s good for very little in the heat of battle, but I had thought Valyn to be less frivolous than others of his kind.
​Shaking my head to clear the distractions, I glance over at the ox and feel my blood begin to boil with the familiar rage of battle. With all the speed with which I am capable, I rush to him and bury my grandfather’s axe between his eyes, deep in his skull. I watch as the life leaves those lives, wrench my weapon from his corpse, and continue through the fray toward the lizard.
​Today, I think to myself, will be the day that I slay my first dragon.
​Through the daydreams of glory, I feel a nagging at the back of my head, like there is something else that I’m supposed to be doing, but I cannot complete the thought. All I can see is silver and red, and I know what I need to do.
​Out of nowhere, an arrow slams into my shoulder, puncturing through my armor and embedding itself in my flesh. I whip my head in the direction from whence it came, but see no one. As the blood soaks my front, I forget the dragon to my right and instead concentrate all of my senses on trying to locate the source of the arrow. The reptile can wait; no one shoots me and survives to boast to their friends.
​Where the FUCK are those elves? I think to myself.
​Next to me, the orc says something, and I think I can make out the word “dragon,” but I pay him no mind. His words hold no importance to me. Does he honestly think that I would heed instruction from the likes of him?
​I set off in the direction that I determine the arrow came from. Let the orc deal with the lizard—maybe they will kill each other and save me the trouble. I have bigger foes to face. If I can only locate him….
​There! For a few seconds I think I see a horned figure with a bow, but he disappears before I can attack. The Stag Lord. He is the one who attacked me. He is the one that I will need to kill.
​Out of the corner of my eye, I notice the dragon fly out through the door. I feel a stab of regret knowing that I will have to wait for another day to join the ranks of dragon-slayers. But I am sure that day will come with time.
​While I consider this, I feel myself coming out of the fog of battle. I remember why we are here. I rush toward the place where we had heard a woman’s screams, hoping that it is the damsel and not that noisy elf….
​I find her in what is obviously the Stag Lord’s bedroom, bloody and beaten and tied to the bed.
​“Elisa,” I say. “We have come to rescue you.” And I walk into the room.
​I untie and ungag the woman, advise her to hide herself, and go back down the corridor to guard the room until reinforcements can arrive (not that I need them!).
​We have the Stag Lord immobilized, I can hear the exclamations from here. The sun-lover did it. I race toward the sounds of my comrades. I see the bandit break free of his bonds and make it out onto a rickety bridge with the orc. I watch as that druid summons a moonbeam with an incredible amount of destructive force. He destroys the bridge and both creatures on it plummet to the ground.
​I race toward the action, but I am too late. Martin, the weakest of us, manages to end the Stag Lord’s life before I can reach him. Throughout this battle I have only managed to kill one man—a giant, but still just one man. But I will do better next time. I grin in anticipation.

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DMAnonymous Raylen_Xolorn

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