The battle restarted as Mendel picked off some of the pirates. The other pirates gathered around Cold Captain Wyther and whisked him away with a dimension door. Some of the pirates went invisible and snuck forward, whilst others, upon red-skinned leathery wings, took to the air and tried to magically ensorcell Faldak and Felix. Commands in abyssal could be heard from below, again ordering some candles to be lit. The rest of the party joined the battle against the pirates remaining on the top deck; smokestick arrows countering their invisibility, and allowing the others to attack. The pirates soon realised they were beaten and began to flee - just as two arrow demons appeared at the side of the deck, and started peppering the party from afar.
The remaining harpy from the previous encounters also appeared and sand a song of confusion at the party. The party was momentarily in disarray as Antony turned on Mendel who promptly fled, before Zhedd used his solid fog spell to remove temporarily the arrow demons from play, and Felix countersang the confusion effect giving Dacien time to capture the harpy in a resilient sphere.
Dacien got a warning through his anticipate teleportation spell that pirate reinforcements would be returning, and gathered a group around him to instead teleport to their location. He left a delayed blast fireball in the crows nest where they would appear, The blast took out one of the pirates, and seeing that the Captain was amongst them, the team decided to stay and take them on. Captain Wyther flew down and used a suggestion to command the party to lie down helpless; Antony again succumbed to the spell and was taken out of the fight. The Captain engaged Mendel in melee, as one of his allies tried to teleport in to join him - only to be again delayed by Dacien's spell. The remaining pirate threw fireballs down at the party, whilst the arrow demon (his companion dismissed) targetted Dacien. Wyther's powers allowed him to catch Mendel unawares and stab him repeatedly. This led to a battle between the pirate captain stabbing Mendel in the spleen, and Gerald healing the spleen as quickly as he could. Without the backup from his fellow pirates, the captain could not win; and after his embarassment at the hands of Vanthus he could not retreat, Mendel cut him down. Dacien, almost felled by the arrow demon, used telekinesis to grab Wyther's body before he could be healed
On the deck below, Faldak had been leading Felix in a slaughter of the pirates gathered there. The slavering dwarf cut so many down they decided to flee, leaving a deck covered in gore. Felix found a trapdoor heading down, and they decided to explore - not before Dacien paraded Wyther's body for the base to see, and Felix called out for any remaining to flee. Mendel and Faldak picked off fleeing pirates from afar, as Dacien raised the water level to stop them using the skiffs to escape.
Once people were healed, they headed below decks through the trapdoor. A trap below drained the life energies from Antony, Mendel and Faldak. A small anteroom led to another chamber with lead-lined walls that shimmered with magic. Crates and sacks of treasure were visible, but as Antony peered around the corner, he saw a large demonic creature, one arm massively oversized, waiting to pounce.
A brief spell of combat left Faldak stunned, and Mendel heavily injured; and the party in disarray as Gerald's holy word backfired on them. Felix joined the party and tried to talk to the yagnoloth, who mentioned only that he was working for Demogorgon. Gerald managed to pause the combat with a magic circle vs evil and the party tried to negotiate; offering to free the beast. He said he knew of a means in the base to free him, but wanted healing first. When the party offered only a potion of cure moderate wounds, he wasn't impressed, and grew irritated and insulted at Mendel's tone, and refused to cooperate.
Relived that the combat had stopped, a bloodied party quickly teleported to Fort Gerard to recover.
[Review] The Dragon Never Sleeps, Glenn Cook
3 hours ago