Hoard of the Dragon Queen, session 18

010815_0530_HoardoftheD1.jpg“I want to pat you!”

That was what Ice told the surprised White Dragon, who suddenly was confronting a halfling sorcerer who really, really like dragons. As Ice was especially charming – aided by having advantage on Charisma checks against dragons – the white dragon, whose name was Glazrael, acquiesced and discovered it was rather nice. Then he took Ice for a ride outside the castle (to the stares of her bemused party members) before returning to his lair.

Then the rest of the adventurers came down, and after making some excuses, dragged Ice back up to the castle above.

The cultists were dead. Blagothkus was back in control of his castle, but there was still a white dragon in control of the hoard below, and Glazrael couldn’t be ignored for much longer. The castle was heading north again, and at some point Glazrael would notice, so the group and Blagothkus made their plans to take down the dragon.

Their plan was to have Ice distract the dragon while everyone else moved to positions where they could attack. Everyone agreed to this plan, and then rested overnight. (Just as well, Michael was on only a handful of hit points after falling off the wyvern earlier in the day).

Soon enough, they were back in the hoard chamber, and Ice began to distract Glazrael. Well, that’s what the rest of the characters thought she was doing, but instead she was pleading with Glazrael to leave, because otherwise her friends would kill him. Tim’s monk did speak draconic, and was not impressed by the dracophilia displayed by the halfling. In fact, there was every chance that Ice could persuade Glazrael, but when her two d20s came up showing a “1” and a “2”, I knew the dragon would be fighting the group.

They probably would have all died if not for Blagothkus. Having a cloud giant on their side was really, really important – as was the group spreading out to fight the dragon. Ice continued to try to persuade Glazrael to flee, but her next attempt was a “2” and a “3”, as the dice gods said “FIGHT!” So they did. Michael, replicating his trick with the wyvern, jumped on Glazrael’s back. A couple of rounds later he was thrown off, landing beside Blagothkus and one of the other characters, just in time for Glazrael to breathe frost over all of them. They survived – barely.

Eventually, the combined efforts of the group were enough to whittle Glazrael down to 3 hit points, and the dragon finally heeded Ice’s pleas to flee. But a magic missile spell on the fleeing dragon was enough to bring it down, and finally the last part of the Cult of the Dragon was purged from the castle. The group got really interested in the hoard, and especially the magic items. Permanent magic items have been few and far between during this adventure!

Blagothkus would drop them off near Waterdeep, but for now, they were happy at disrupting the plans of the Cult.

Next session… we begin The Rise of Tiamat!

3 comments

  1. Marc

    I’ve enjoyed reading your write up. I’ve tried to picture how that castle won’t be the end of my party. It sounds like your group did it well. How do you feel it flowed? Did you feel like you were having to give them a lot of easy options, because it could easily be so deadly.

    I wonder if you plan to let the party keep the castle/hoard in tact?

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  2. merricb

    I definitely made things easier than they could be, in large part due to the composition of the party which lacks a good wizard (and has a bard in the healing role). At present, I’m far more interested in the story the group creates rather than going all-out for difficulty. I suspect that a lot of the hoard will be quietely taxed away in the upcoming sessions (not that they can do much with the gold!)

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  3. Kris

    I’ve really enjoyed reading through your “Hoard of a Dragon Queen write-ups, particularly as I’m running my group of newbies through it also. You’re obviously a great DM and it sounds as though you and your group had a great time! What I find amazing is that you completed the module in 18 sessions! We’ve just completed our 18th session and we haven’t finished chapter 4 yet. Our sessions average twice the length of yours and I only have 3 players… So by my math we’re taking our sweet time with it all!
    They love the roleplaying aspect though and the depth of relationships with npcs has been something nice to take our time with. I’m also weaving a bunch of backstories and now sidequests into it too but I figure it won’t hurt a party of three to be a level ahead of what the book suggests.
    Anyway, I’ll be sure to read through your Rise of Tiamat posts now.
    Cheers,
    Kris

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