Raygun Lounge Keep on the Borderlands

Catching Up With Ronnik

Episode 5: The Serpent’s Eye

Veronica as Euna Dunhall the Human Fighter
Anna as Zesvyrae Melduis the Drow Cleric
Bob as Malklyr the Drow Assassin
Jacob as Aurochs the Minotaur Warden
Ed as Brandis the Human Mage.
Robert as Orsino the Human Rogue
Tim as DM

The adventures take a short rest and debate their route up to the next level. They finally decide to go up by the stairs and the lift to the next floor. The lift is loud and the stairs is magically warded to shout, “Greetings, unknown creatures!” The element of surprise is not with them as they reach the top.

Other than the fire braziers that light this large room, daylight pours in through large double doors that are open to an outdoor balcony at the top of a broad staircase. The room contains new and out-of-place furnishings—such as a cage and a card table—and lots of unopened supplies. The inhabitants clearly arrived recently.

Two armored, shield-bearing kobolds and a leather-clad, axewielding dragonborn look ready for a fight. Aurochs rush in and attacks the dragonborn mercenary. While fighting the mercenary, Aurochs notices a young dragon hiding in the corner cage. Aurochs decides to not let the mercenary know that he saw the dragon and he keeps silent.

Copper_wyrmling.jpgAs the adventures fight off the kobolds and the dragonborn, the young dragon comes bounding out of the cage and unsuccessfully attacks Euna. “Grwarrr!” it yells as it attacks Euna, “I’m a dangerous dragon!”

The heroes finish off the kobolds and dragonborn, but keep the dragon alive by smacking it on the nose and telling it to heel. They quickly realize the dragon is mostly harmless and misdirected. The dragon says her name is Moxulhar, but says they can call her Mox.

She explains that Ronnik was at Dragontooth Hill this morning, but he left a while ago. Mox divulges that the banker used a magical ritual to contact his lizardfolk allies, planning to ambush and murder Benwick this very day. The friar trades for herbs with local lizardfolk on a predictable schedule at a usual place—the end of an old road near the swamp, where older dolmens stand.

A quick search of the tables by the party reveals Ronnik’s maps and plans. These documents reveal the same plot that Mox told, as well as the old road/dolmen meeting location. The papers also sketch out Ronnik’s plan to finance the refitting of Dragontooth Hill as a small fortress for Tiamat. One letter indicates that he has established relations with a small kobold tribe, the Burning Scales. The adventurers just defeated several of these kobolds at Dragontooth Hill.

The adventures also recover a large, polished tiger-eye jewel with the symbol of Avandra on one side and the symbol of Zehir on the other. They quickly determine that this must be the Serpent’s Eye they were hired to recover.

The cage holds a small hoard: the Serpent’s Eye, a level 4 magic weapon, a level 3 magic neck item, and hidden under one of the cage’s floor cobbles is a potion of healing.

Knowing that Benwick is headed for an ambush, the team decides to race to his rescue. They use the zip line on the balcony to get back to the valley below.

Armed with their map, they rush across the countryside, out of the Chaos Scar, and beyond the King’s Wall. They quickly find the old road they were looking for and follow it north toward the swamp. The trees close in as the land descends and becomes marshier. Their haste pays off. Approaching the location, they hear furious yelling and Benwick’s cries for help.

Benwick kneels on one side of the clearing, his hands raised defensively. A dragonborn has its weapon raised, menacing him. Nearby, Benwick’s companions, Gordi and Sal, lie motionless on the ground. Above them stands Ronnik, looking around wildly.

Three lizardfolk stand near Ronnik. At your approach, they look expectantly at Ronnik and hiss words at him in Draconic. Euna, who speaks Draconic translate that the lizardfolk are asking what to do with the strangers. Ronnik looks around, and before he can answer, the dragonborn glares at the lizardfolk and in Common says “We shall seal our agreement with blood. Come, Ronnik, we shall kill them together and welcome our reptilian brethren into Tiamat’s fold.”

With that, all four reptilian humanoids turn and attack.Lizardfolk.jpg

The adventures fight back with gusto to make a bard tear up. Aurochs charges into battle with the lizardfolk. Ronnik yells at the heroes and engages Aurochs. Brandis discharges his Font of Fire and catches Ronnik and a lizardman in the blast. Ronnik makes an attack on Aurochs and Aurochs returns with a flurry of blows. As Aurochs goes down for the second time, he smashes Ronnik’s skull and Ronnik crumples in the Font of Fire.

The last of the enemies fall and the heroes are victorious. They check on Benwick, Gordi, and Sal and administer aid to get them back on their fee. Aurochs is suspicious of the coincidence that Sal and Gordi were taken down, but says nothing out loud.

Benwick expresses grief that it had to come to Ronnik’s death, but he’s relieved that it’s over. Benwick offers each character a 75 gp reward for recovering the jewel. He says that for now, the gem should remain with Chendera at the temple of Avandra for safekeeping.

The friar requests that the characters, after a well earned rest, speak to Gorn Hammerfell, captain of the watch. Benwick believes that Gorn has a problem that the Serpent’s Eye and the adventurers can help solve. Benwick says he’d like to see the Serpent’s Eye do some good before it’s returned to Fallcrest.

Citizens of the outer bailey treat the characters like saviors for ridding the keep of “that snake, Ronnik.” The heroes also enjoy occasional discounts in the shops (never the inn) and a few free drinks at The Stumbling Giant.

(If the characters ask about the symbol of Zehir on the jewel, he tells them that a cult of Zehir stole the gem from the temple of Avandra in Fallcrest and placed the symbol on it. Much later, Ronnik stole the gem from the cult and “selfishly refused to return it.”)

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