I am gradually woken up from my dream of sunbathing at my favorite oasis back on Gheldeneth by the healing energies of Lenata’s magic and a bright flash of light.
“I can’t see!” Vedis exclaims as Word cautiously floats down to us and reaches out to make sure we’re there.
“It is now noted that space whales have the ability to shoot out the light they absorb from their underbellies,” he states matter of factly before sitting down and meditating.
I was just able to turn my head away from the light, so it only takes a moment for me to blink and get my vision back. I catch a glimmer of something shiny in the distance and have to blink a few times to make sure I’m not seeing things before I scramble to stand up and take a closer look.
“Hey Word… when you’re able to see again… do you think you could take me out to investigate some of the rocks in the distance? I think I see a possible sign of civilization out there.”
“Curious. I shall be able to aide you momentarially,” he replies as Lenata finishes with her spell of mending. “Thank you for your assistance, Lenata.”
“No problem,” Lenata replies. “I guess I’ll take care of Vedis and Ef Utan while you all check it out. Be careful.”
“All right, then!” I exclaim as Word stands up and I hop on his back. “Let’s go thataway!”
About 1,500 feet out I can begin to make out more details. The shiny object I saw fills the side of a disc-shaped asteroid about 40-50 feet across. “A structure, perhaps?” I ask outloud.
“Undeterminable at this juncture,” Word replies. “I do see an object that seems to be heading for us, however.”
I am just able to readjust my position on Word’s back to free him up for combat when a strange metallic spheroid appears in front of us with a collection of strange eyes and tentacles. We freeze and the thing just seems to be… waiting, I guess.
“It doesn’t appear to be scanning us,” Word offers.
“Try backing away slowly,” I whisper to him. I think I’ve read about these things when I was in the Seeker library. What were they…yes… Storm Clouds of Thon.
Unfortunately backing away was something it didn’t like as it starts to glow and its tentacles start whipping about. With a snap the tentacle lashes out and jolts Word with an electrical burst. Odd… it seems to leak green goop from a gash in its side when it uses that attack. I shall have to note that for later.
I grip Words sides with my legs and whip out my guns over his shoulders as I fire off two rounds into the creature before it lashes at me with its hooked tentacles. After a few more rounds with it the creature’s eyes glow green as it scans us, then launches away into the distance.
“Perhaps we should return to the others before we go any further?” Word suggests. “We should tell them of what we discovered.” We’re both not doing so well after that attacks, so I nod and we make our way back to the others.
Eventually we make it back and Lenata expends a spell to give us all food and water as we rest and share what we learned with the others. While that ring I found so long ago keeps me from being hungry or thirsty, there is something said about the act of breaking bread with companions.
After a few hours we come up with a plan using some rope that will enable Word to help us get to the shiny structure in the distance, and thankfully no encounters bother us along the way this time.
Eventually we make it to the flat disc-like asteroid to find a strange structure that seems organic… yet not. As we land I do a double-take as out of the corner of my eye I swear I saw an Illithid in black leather with glowing eyes looking at us. When I look around, however… there is nothing. I make my way through some jagged rocks to find a place to sit as I rub my arms nervously. As the others settle they request some rest time before further investigation, so Word and I take watch. While only needing to sleep 2 hours a night is useful… it usually means I also get watch duty.
Everything seems to be going smoothly for a while… until suddenly I see a face full of teeth before me that just as quickly disappears. I don’t like this at all.
“Get up get up get up!” I mutter as I look around nervously and nudge Lenata and Ef Utan with my foot.
Wisps of fog start to form around us drastically limiting our vision, and a green glow begins to radiate from the ground as we all huddle back to back to prepare for the worst of what might come.
I draw my guns nervously a I peer into the fog when suddenly the mouth full of sharp teeth once again shoots towards me and then recedes. Shaken and scared out of my fur I shoot into the fog in hopes that I might have hit the thing. I try and listen for movement in the fog, but hear nothing other than the chants of the others as they cast spells on their weapons.
I can see out of the corner of my eye that Word is loading his hand crossbow, when suddenly there is a grinding noise and a TWANG. I reflexively duck out of the way and wince at the noise it makes as the bolt imbeds itself into Ef Utan’s shoulder.
So of course… that’s when the monster decides to come out of the mist again. Of course. This time, however, it’s not the mouth full of teeth. The strange creature materializes out of the fog and begins to mutter something in a guttural tongue that I swear I’ve heard before. Slow? I think that’s what he said… I look to my left and have my suspicions confirmed as Ef Utan staggers and grabs his head.
I focus my search on Ef Utan’s side, as I fear the creature is preparing an attack on him… when a choked cry comes from above. With a screech the monster swoops down and bites Ef Utan on his wounded shoulder before it sends Word flying with a swing of its arm.
….did I mention that all of the others were still tied together with that rope we used to get here?
I leap over the others as they are pulled along with Word and manage to shoot it with my Dragon Pistol before it disappears again. With a disheartening clang I realize that bullets once again aren’t going to cut it. Seriously… I need a gun in a fight, I don’t have one. I have one, I don’t need one. The Gods and I are going to have to have a talk one of these days if they can refrain from any more silence spells.
I quickly holster my gun and slip my hands into my clawed gauntlets as I rejoin the others who are getting to their feet. It leaps out at us again, but not before Vedis pushes out with her hand and launches it up into the air for Lenata to shoot with balls of light that shoot from her finger.
It whines almost like an injured dog before it disappears into the mists and I hear the clanging of claws against metal. Crap….Word! I pour on an extra burst of speed as I zero in on the sounds of battle. I manage to see Word grappling with the beast before I growl loudly and leap at the both of them with my claws. With a grunt Word manages to turn the creature my way to take the full force of my pounce as my feet slam into its torso and my claws rip at its face. I then push off off with an acrobatic flip to land on my feet and prepare for my next attack. Thankfully it looks like we’re finally doing damage to the thing with our bladed weapons.
Ef Utan leaps out of the fog with a yell wielding his katanas, but unfortunately his injured shoulder hindered his attack just enough for the creature to grab his arm and throw him aside… and off the edge of the rock. Okay… now I am glad they are still tied together. I can hear him grunting in pain and frustration as he starts pulling himself back up.
With a pulse of energy two psi blades form in Vedis’ hands and she throws them into the torso of the creature with a satisfying yell as Word continues to grapple it. I roll out of the way of its swinging clawed appendages and swipe at it with an uppercut from crotch to neck before stabbing it in the neck with my other gauntlet, and then quickly get out of the way as an angry Ef Utan comes up behind me to run his sword through its side.
With a yelp the creature disappears in a wisp of foul smelling gas and the fog finally begins to dissipate.
“What in the 9 Hells was that thing?” Ef Utan asks as he wipes his blade on his breeches and sheaths his sword.
“A Hound of Tindalos,” Word answered. “They are vile creatures from nightmares who come into our world through the angles of reality.”
“Angles,” Lenata repeated worriedly as she looked around at the jagged rocks covering the asteroid we’re on. She then shakes her head and goes over to Ef Utan to heal his shoulder as much as she can.
“Well… there’s no point in waiting around to get attacked again, right?” I speak out as I check my guns and make sure they are all loaded. “What say we get proactive and try to focus on getting out of here?”
“What do you suggest?” asked Vedis. “There’s not a whole lot around here.”
“But there is that ,” I reply as I point back at the large dome. “I’m sure it’s a trap of some heinous nature… but really, I don’t see any other options here.”