Happenstance

The Hand of the Storm King

The Party works to defeat the Storm King's Agents

The Party at just defeated a plant like creature near the village of Bristar when they received a surprise visit by a Druid, who had been in the shape of a giant bird. The Druid explained to the party that the plant that they had just destroyed was part of a much greater threat to the forest, one that he had sworn an oath to fight. Unfortunately, a new threat was rising to the South: The Storm King. The Druid was worried that the Storm King’s threat would imperil his efforts to contain the evil that was the dead God Moander, whose essence was imprisoned in the forest of Cormanthor in a place called Darkwatch. He was far too busy dealing with the threat of the God of Corruption to deal with the Storm King himself, and was determined to see if the Party would fight the Storm King in his stead. The Druid promised it would be a dangerous battle, one that may cost them all their lives, but it was necessary for the safety of Deepingdale, if not all of the Dales.

After much thought, the party agreed to his request, and he gave them a final test before explaining the situation fully to them. The party must destroy the Young Red Dragon Blaze-wing, who made his lair in the mountains south-west of Highmoon. The Druid was worried that Blaze-wing could pose a dangerous distraction when the Storm King made his move, and wanted to remove that threat before it could manifest itself. He was also concerned that Blaze-wing might be recruited, or forced to serve the Storm King, as he wasn’t quite powerful enough to resist such an effort, unlike his sister Thraxata. The Party agreed to the task, and prepared themselves for a terrible battle. Before they returned home, the Druid helped Assaria find a familiar in a Tressym, a small winged cat. Returning the Highmoon, they gathered supplies and created magic items necessary for the battle ahead. Once ready, they proceeded to Blaze-wing’s lair, where they battled kobolds, whom he had pressed into service, outside the entrance. Making their way inward, they fought more Kobolds, and eventually Blaze-wing himself. After an epic battle, with Blaze-wing setting fire to much of the room (including several kobolds), the party eventually brought him down thanks to a combination of powerful ice magic, courtesy of Assaria, and the martial efforts of the party’s other members. They looted his hoard, took his body as a trophy and made their way back to Highmoon.

Once returned to their Tower, the party made the necessary arrangements to receive their reward for killing the dragon, and then received further instructions from the Druid. He explained that there were five principle figures who guided the efforts of the Storm King outside of his black keep in the Thunderpeak Mountains. They included:

An Ogre, who acted as chief enforcer for the Storm King. He maintained discipline among his army, and was much feared by the orcs and others, and respected by the other Ogres. This death would remove the greatest barrier to in-fighting among the Storm King’s forces, hopefully dividing their army prior to the Storm King’s attack on Deepingdale.

An Orc Barbarian, who acted as the chief instructor and drill master for the Storm King’s Army. This Elder Orc was of a great age, yet had never been defeated in battle. He trained the Storm King’s forces, and lent his formidable skill to a new generation of Orc warriors. His death would lesson the eventual skill of the Orc army, as well as remove a potent champion from the field.

An Orc Wizard, also named the Mystic, who acted as chief lieutenant of the Storm King’s arcane spellcasters. Orc Wizard’s are rare, and one’s as powerful as he are even rarer. He instructed other Orcs in the Art of Wizardry, and oversaw the production of magical weapons for the Storm King’s army. His death would hurt the production of magical arms and armor for the Storm King, as well as reduce the eventual effectiveness of the Storm King’s spellcasters when the Storm King finally attacked.

An Ogre Mage, Brullimaxx, who acted as something of a chief lieutenant for the Storm King. Brull acted as the Storm King’s special adviser, taking care of tasks the Storm King would trust no one else with. He was also suspected of being the eventual High General of the Storm King’s Army when the war arrived. The death of Brull would deprive the Storm King of one of his most capable agents, and foil plans that they might not know of yet. It would hopefully force the Storm King to delay his attack until he could find a new general for his armies.

Lastly, a forest troll, who acted as chief scout and spy for the Storm King. Camped in ancient elven ruins in Cormanthor, he was charged with keeping an eye on the forces of Deepingdale, looking for weaknesses that could be exploited. While the Storm King could scry on individual people, this scout could reveal a greater picture that would serve the Storm King when the war finally came. He was assisted and protected by a small force of Orcs and Ogres, as well as several of his forest troll kin, who aided him in his scouting efforts. His death would help blind the Storm King, cutting him off from vital intelligence that he could use when he unleashed his forces upon Deepingdale. Again, the hope was that the Storm King would delay his attack while he found a replacement, hopefully a long enough delay to buy time for Deepingdale to adequately prepare.

The party, after examining what they knew about where the Storm King’s forces were at the moment, decided to kill the Enforcer first, as he was the closest geographically. Then they would kill the Scout, who had encamped in ruins near Bristar.

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DonalGraeme

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