It would probably have been better if we had left on time, as that
might have avoided the horrible traffic on the 80, but we still made it
to Roseville in good time for...
Amazon Quintet of Justice IXc: "...and TEN THOUSAND
Seeing the prisoners about to be sacrificed by necrotheologians, Our
Heroines spring into action! Unfortunately, so do the two hulking yuan-ti
abominations guarding the door and the two spell-casters stringing up a
baby dragon over a pool of shimmering light!
Alyra darts forward and grabs the wyrmling, but the others are stuck
in the narrow corridor as the abominations charge. Amaryllis covers the
pool with a sheet of stone and makes a refuge for Alyra to get her back
against, but then is savaged by one of the abominations and only
survives by a miracle.
Fresa causes one of the abominations to implode into nothingness, and
then distracts the other while Gabrielle fills it full of magic
arrows. In the meantime, Marika, who for reasons as yet unexplained is
among the prisoners, wriggles free of her bonds and joins the fight,
though she is clad only in the standard diaphanous white gown.
When Amaryllis recovers from her near-death experience, she opens up
on the yuan-ti spellcasters, incinerating one and then freezing the one
that Alyra and Marika have been fighting. Justice is served!
Once uncovered, the pool turns out to be still mostly shimmery and
non-evil, except for a few bits where the wyrmling's blood dripped into it,
and it also has a sword resting on the bottom. An accident reveals that
having the dragons swim in the pool reduces the amount of contamination, so
soon the pool is pure again, and incidently, everyone is fully healed. From
the strength of its magic, the sword is undoubtedly one of the Five
Mystical Items needed to save the world. Only two more to go!
Marika explains that she was tricked into working for people who then
hit her over the head and stuffed her into diaphanous robes, and did not
actually sign on with the Forces of Evil, so the other Amazons take her
along when they gather up the four dragons (two adolescents and two
wyrmlings) and scarper.
Although leaving the city might be the safest course, the Quintet decide
to stay and rest up overnight, incidentally finding out what happens when
it's not dawn in the magical city. Fortunately, the most alarming
incident is the attachment of one wyrmling to its rescuer, Alyra.
The morning is quite a different story, though: the moment dawn opens
the gates to the city, the western sky darkens with an enormous flock of
After a few tense moments, Alyra defuses the situation by wearing one of
the wyrmlings as a hat, and the Amazons are able to explain about the
necrotheologians (including the now-deceased dragonnappers) and the
importance of saving the world. Alas, the majority of the eighty dragons
are unimpressed, but Aurmvoris, the father of the kidnappees agrees to help
against the blue dragon (the most responsible surviving creature.)
Aurmvoris causes some consternation back at the oasis, but a few days of
shopping are necessary for the Amazons to be ready to go after the blue
dragon and his gang of hieracosphinxes. Not to mention, the sword from the
pool needs to be properly analyzed; it is determined to grant the holder
resistance to fear of reptiles, and therefore allocated to Alyra. Finally
the preparations are complete, though, and the six set off.
Methods similar to those used in the search for the Lost City quickly
lead them to the blue dragon's new lair, which is buried beneath a
mountain ridge, and some invisible scouting by Alyra finds the three
entrances, each guarded by a pair of well-camouflaged hieracosphinxes.
Going into the caves after their target would be even more foolish than
usual, so eventually it is decided that Aurmvoris will leap upon and
savage the guards at each entrance in turn, until the blue dragon is
drawn out and can be fought in the open.
* * *
We decided to break there, since there was no way we could finish the
blue dragon battle quickly enough to get home in time for Ayse to give
Jinian her medicine.
Zoom. Zoom. Splut.