Poe had thought the Raven Queen had finally decided to give him a sweet release. The rest of the party was breathing a collective sigh of relief as they attempted to catch their breath. It had been a harrowing experience. Multiple waves of Kobolds had threatened to overrun Ron Burgundy’s Follies. Guss was flustered as the Kobolds had used their greater mobility to great advantage, avoiding the stalwart defender to strike at other more tempting targets. “Did one get away?” He asked between breaths.
“Yeah, downriver” came the answer from Kleister Fokken. “These little bastards are so damn hard to see in these trees.”
The Cleartear River rushed past our intrepid heroes. Over the river, a mere 150 feet away was the far bank, were the grasslands that offered much easier passage and much better sight lines. They had just started the ritual casting required to get the six members of their party across when the Kobolds had begun their attack, once again calling out for Beros’s head. Ron had memorized how to say “Kill the elf” now in Dragonic.
While the party cleared a space for the ritual casters to begin, Durkon excitedly turned over one of the Kobold adepts. “We must have found a party going to make a sacrifice. Look at the size of this piece of jade!” From the waterlogged body that had washed up after being felled by Beros’s arrows as it sought escape over the waters was a huge piece of a unworked jade. “This has to be worth a fortune.” Durkon whispered excitedly. “Maybe a couple of thousand to the right buyer.”
As they prepared to start again the magic to allow for their river crossing, there was a horrible sound from downriver. It sounded like a sick buffalo in heat. Beros’s head snapped up. “They’re calling for more. That’s a horn.” he whispered in horror. For a few minutes, the sound just hung in the air like a putrid fog. Then from upriver, came an answering horn. Then another, and another until the air was full of the dreadful noise. Finally from across the river, still out of sight came a much cleaner sounding horn.
Kloister recognized it immediately. “The orcs answer the call. I hope we have the time we need to get across the river.”
“Doubtful.” Ron said dejectedly. “Those were pontoons they had in the villages. With this current, I’d say we’ve got about 15 minutes. Maybe less.”