Ever try to talk to a kobold? Us neither!!
Podmidor, Quinton the Shadow Monster troll, Rorek and Froderick have closed ranks around the fallen Chickens, whose body lies tangled in a mass of kobold corpses. Quinton, Rorek and Froderick finish off the remaining kobolds as a cry goes up from beyond the fog. The remaining kobolds in the fog pull back as the cry is picked up by more and more of them. In a short amount of time, only the party remains, breathing heavily and surrounded by the bodies of the fallen around them. All becomes quiet. Froderick covers Chickens’ body with kobold corpses, and passes Headsplasher to Rorek. The group then, led by Quinton and Podmidor start slowly making their way through the fog in the general direction of the center of the camp.
Turqeel, on the rim of the crater, hears the cry be taken up among the kobold numbers, and stops to watch them retreat from the fog, and form up into a loose semicircle around the back end of the crater. Their numbers take them around the end of the fog bank extending into their camp, semi-surrounding it. Turqeel notices Cues hidden behind a boulder, also watching the proceedings. The female kobold Turqeel was chasing reaches the rim of the crater, and flees right past where Cues is hiding and off into the woods, unnoticed.
At the end of the fog bank, Quinton stands with Pod close behind him. Rorek and Froderick flank Pod to either side. They stand about 30 yards across from the kobold chief, facing a semicircle of kobolds that extends well around them, and the fog bank. At first no one moves. Then Podmidor yells in his strongest voice, “Surrender or meet your doom!!!” Female kobolds stand with the males, and scaly hands adjust their grip on weapons as the chief responds back, “Yipyap heimlindiene grrrr yelphausen!!” The chief stands tensely with a half dozen kobolds around him in leather armor. A blackened, feather covered kobold stands nearby.
The kobolds number nearly a hundred. They stand silently, appraisingly taking in the party. The chief again yells out “Yipyap heimlindiene grrrr yelphausen!!” Kobold hands tense on weapons, and the party glances at each other. Froderick surveys the scene grimly, while Rorek casually inspects his wounds. The tension (except for Rorek) is palpable.
Podmidor sends Quinton five menacing steps toward the chief. Some of the kobolds eye the troll with fear, and others with doubt. Again, Podmidor yells at them to surrender, that this is their last chance. The kobold chief’s guards close up around him, and the chief steps forward, calling out, “sNarlbrauBARKinsnitch!!!!” and indicates the number surrounding the party. The kobolds…even their women… are tightening hands on weapons, and looking to the chief. Podmidor shouts one more time, “DROP YOUR WEAPONS!!”
The chief stands and stares at Podmidor, his hand/paw raised up, holding back the press who is by now clamoring to be let loose to overwhelm the party. The chief looks to a female and shakes his head…then HOWWWLSSS and brings his arm down….And the mass rises.. Like a wave breaking, they surge forward at the party. As they charge, the chief drinks a potion, and Pod begins to cast. The Lightning Bolt is deafening…a white flash of intense light blinding both defenders and attackers, leaving an impression on the backs of every eye of twisted bodies being flung away. The chief, who is rising from the crater floor on his flight upwards from his potion, is fully enveloped and thrown backwards and away. The bolt strikes the back of the crater, melting dirt and sand, and partially reflecting upwards. Spell duration expired, Quinton vanishes.
The kobolds immediately around the blast break and scatter all directions, but from the sides, they come on. The kobold wave crashes around the party, thrusting and clubbing with weapons, and in some cases, clawing. Rorek and Froderick fell them with every swing of sickle and axe, and yet the tide advances. Podmidor begins to furiously cast yet again, as Froderick faces immediate danger of being surrounded. Froderick is doing his best to keep the kobolds in front of him at bay, including a female kobold crying and attacking with just her claws, until a club SLAMS in between his shoulder blades. He is knocked to his hands and knees, and surrounded by a press of enemies that immediately try to swarm him. A spear thrust nearly separates Rorek’s shoulder from the muscles connecting it, and another seeks out his chest. Raising his weapon is agony. As Podmidor casts, as Froderick is engulfed by the tide, Rorek too quickly becomes overwhelmed by the press. Then the attackers reach Podmidor, who is lost in his casting. As the first spear enters his body, Pod’s lips keep moving…The second enters his stomach as the first leaves his chest…and his fingers keep tracing runes… The last spear pierces his neck, and he is just able to push it back enough to finish….the final….rune…. A second roar fills the crater as another Lightning Bolt blasts back a dozen kobolds to Podmidor’s left, passing to Froderick’s side. Bleeding and severely wounded, Podmidor somehow remains standing to see the work of his spell.
It is at this point, waaay back on the rim of the crater where he’s been hiding watching the proceedings, that Cues realizes that it will take every single bit of unexpected surprise to break the kobold’s attack and scatter them. It is at this point, when all looks it’s worst, and confusion and death reign, that Cues charges down the slope swinging his staff around over his head and screaming in defiance at the top of his lungs. He is so far away….will he arrive in time to make any difference, or just become another overwhelmed fatality?
Forgotten for the time being, under the tangled press of seeping kobold corpses, Chickens’ chest hitches once…twice… his eyes crack open in anguish…and then glaze over as death transfixes them yet again. and the cycle continues.