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PotA Ep.12: A Daring Rescue, New Faces, and a Burning Effigy

Karmic Justice

Eternal Judicator of BT
Previous Episode: https://ttt.playbtg.com/index.php?threads/pota-episode-11-turnabout-restocking-barbarians.4460/

"Dreena, honey, slow down! The food's not going anywhere!"
Between the couple days of near-starvation, her frayed nerves, and the long travels, it took everything the druid could mentally to stop herself from shoveling her mother's home cooking into her mouth as fast as possible.
"Honestly, how on earth could you be THIS hungry? I thought I've taught you quite well how to hunt and scavenge for food."
Dreena Dellmon swallowed her food with a large gulp. "The Sumber hills are in bad shape, mother. All the natural wildlife there is just gone. Just monsters remain. And also, you know how bad-tasting goodberries are. I missed your cooking."
"Indeed", replied Marka. "There is much to miss in these times..."
Dreena got up from her seat and wrapped her arms around her mother from behind in a tight embrace. "I miss Perd and Fyndrick too, mom. We'll be alright."
After a few minutes Dreena went back to her seat. Wiping some tears from her eyes and after blowing her nose, Marka asked, "So what happened at this so-called 'druid gathering'?"
Dreena scowled. "It was a ruse for some awful cult called the Eternal Flame, mom. They were trying to recruit druids from all around the area to recruit into their ranks with promises of power and destruction through fire. Those that didn't make their cut or were unwilling to join were sacrified to some giant wicker effigy with a Fire elemental inside. I sent a messenger pidgeon to Ivor and his friends, letting him know I needed help, but I was caught shortly after sending the message. They bound and gagged me, holding me prisoner in a tent on their grounds, where I heard the most horrendous sounds: screams of pain, agony, death, and the laugh of monsters of cultists who relished in the sounds of burning flesh. I was for sure going to be next if it wasn't for Cassus breaking into my tent and setting me loose. With his help, we were able to set free the other surviving druids and regrouped with Ivor and the others. They looked like they fought their way through many cultists, as many of them were singed and wounded. Sukkasa the monk especially looked like she beat a werewolf to a bloody pulp on top of a campfire. Ivor looked like he got hit by a fireball spell, as his armor was singed, his face full of soot, and there were some burn marks on his clothes. Anyways, we defeated the elemental with Ivor's ability to call lightning from the sky and everyone working together. Wierdly enough, unless they were blinded, they didn't try to attack Glowy, the genasi. After putting out some fires (figuratively and literally) we decided to dispatch any remaining cultists outside before going inside Scarlet Moon Hall, and ran across 2 interesting people. One was a Firbolg druid by the name of Bushbeard (*Played by @Marlem *) that I met a day before my capture. He's rather shy, and there was a lot of confusion because Raven thoight he was a cultist and attacked him in a blind rage. It was a real shitshow. There was also a water cultist here named Saruiki who we almost killed too, before realizing that she's a pacifist, and was forced to become a cultist against her will. She was sent by the water prophet, Gar Shatterkeel, to spy on the eternal flame cult, who apparently are quite secretive. Apparently, the Prophet of the fire cult is a newcomer, so there seems to be infighting withing the cult's ranks. She is soulbound to the evil god of elemental water, Olhydra, and cannot free herself from it by herself, so we let her go free under the pretense that we'd try to free all innocent cultists."
"...And what did Ivor think of that?" asked Marka, giving a snide wink to Livi, who giggled in her seat.
"He was troubled by it, I think" replied Dreena, oblivious to the jest. "We rested up with some other druids who were not with the EF cult, as we prepared to assault the hall the next day. Inside was an Azer, some more cultists, and their ringleader, a bastard druid named Elizar Dryflagon. Sukkasa threw him into the pit inside, twice, before killing him. At the bottom of the tower was this cooled lava tube with some magical fire wall that we couldn't get through, so that's when I decided to report back to the Enclave. Ivor and his friends decided to go back to Feathergale Spire to revive a friend. Apparently, they met a 'ghost' that gave them a reincarnation scroll at Helvenblade house, so Glowy wants to bring Savra Belabantra back to life. Bushbeard went with them too, but I went this way, and well, here I am!"

"Did you give Ivor a goodbye kiss?" quipped Livi. Dreena turned bright red. "N-NO! LIVI! How dare you imply-"
"Relax, Dreena," her mother states matter-of-factly. "You're not that good at hiding your emotions. I'm sure he likes you too. Though, you should really settle down soon and give me grandchildren..."
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