Chapter 17: Death's Breath

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About the Saga

The heroes depart for the Verdant Expanse to confront the Green Blight. They take a southernly route to avoid the elemental vortex near ol'Triple Threat's Lair, but in doing so find them must cross the Death's Breath Forest.


Cast of Characters

And appearing off-screen:

Notable Quotes

  • "Your mother was a milk cow" - Burgell insulting the gorgon

What Has Come Before

The Griffins Guild has dispatched three of its proteges -- Tanevir, Telthanas, and Burgell -- to deal with the threat of the Green Blight, a green dragon that has seized control of a portal to the Feywild at the heart of the Verdant Waste. Accompanying them on this quest are several new recruits: Hawkwind, a Pomarjian native whose tribe was wiped out by humanoid invaders; Fargrim Frostbeard, a dwarven cleric of Muamman Duathal; and Shump Bloodoath and Hank Ironvow, both half-orc fighters hired on from the Nazarn's Answer mercenary company.

With the swirling elemental storm they accidentally summoned still raging over the Dire Downs to the East of Obsidian Bay, they have chosen to travel through the tamer (or at least, less lightning blasted) hills to the south. Even here they can see signs of the Verdant Waste's rampant expansion, as well as signs of flash flooding caused by the deluge to the north. They've dealt with their first significant threat -- bugbears who successfully ambushed them in their camp -- and are now pressing on toward the Waste.

The Saga

Flocktime 1, CY 515

The heroes continued their track east, now joined with Finn Underbow. With the halfling taking up the ranger duties for the party, Tanevir and Hawkwind decide to scout ahead and look for danger. The adventurers travel for three hours before encountering the Death's Breath Forest. The forest had once been used by the Suel wizards of the Storm Barony as a game preserve. The heroes came up against one of their former pets: an iron-plated, bull-like gorgon. The creature thundered out of the deep forest to attack them, knocking them down trees as it did so.

The adventurers were able to stay one step ahead of the beast and avoid its enraged attacks long enough to take the best down. Hank Ironvow scored the killing blow, driving his long sword between the beast's shoulders. With the creature dead, Talthanas recalled that a "gorgon's grove" was a known phenomenon: the place in the forest where the creature bedded down. It's said to have treasure there, probably from the many would-be heroes that tried to kill it.

The adventurers successfully navigated their way to the grove, where they found a small hoard:

  • Coins: 900 copper; 3,000 silver; 1,900 gold; 120 platinum
  • Gems: 7 green onyx worth 50 gp each
  • Art: 1 silver set of animal figurines worth 250gp (woodland animals: deer, fox, wolves, rabbits, etc.); 1 wood statuette worth 250gp (but it weights 50 lbs)
  • Magic Items: Ring of Mind Shielding- has a rough and evil look about it, suggesting demonic handiwork. It bears the symbol of an ancient order of demon worshippers (the Order of Xaxxan); Medallion of Thoughts; Petrified Rabbit's Foot (Stone of Good Luck)

Having found and looted the grove, the heroes headed east. They found grass-covered hills overlooking a wide open plain choked with brush, thorns, and all-but-impassible vegetation. Telthantas identified it as the "Drowned Plain", and explained it was prone to frequent flooding during the rainy season. Given that the elemental vortex was spawning regular thunderstorms, it was clear that the resulting rains had begun to gradually drain into -- and possibly flood -- the region.

Seeing how difficult the terrain is, the adventurers decided to head to the coast and try their luck along the shoreline.

On their way there, a terror of griffins appeared overhead. The heroes went to ground, taking cover 300 feet away as the creatures attacked and slaughtered a heard of deer. While the griffins devoured their lunch, Talthanas quietly identified the new-found magic items.

An hour later, the creatures took flight, and the adventurers continued their journey south.

They arrived at the beach and started hiking along its uneven shoreline. They see a cave -- a potential camp ground -- and head toward it only to find it was clearly inhabited. The edge of the cave mouth was been scored by claws and the rotting remains of all manner of creatures rot at its base.

They decide to backtrack and spend the night in a gully instead, mindful of the thing that lurked in the cave.

Flocktime 2, CY 515

The night passed uneventfully but the hereos awoke to sense a storm rising in the east. Rested, they head head out again, hugging the coast but avoiding the cave with the suspected monster in it. After eight hours of sandy travel, the heroes entered into a flattish region of the plain with many gullies that opened on to the beach with silty fantails.

That's when they catch glimpse of the chimera.

They immediately decided to hide, with Finn finding *the perfect* hiding spot. Unfortunately Burgell and Fargrim were terrible at hiding and drew the creature's attention.

The chimera came in fast and furious and burned the edge of the brush using the breath weapon of it's dragon head. The gladiators -- Hank and Shump -- waiting for their shot (and the thing to land) -- didn't' fire as the thing flew by.

Finn does shoot at the chimera, hitting the thing and drawing the first wound. Burgell then cast *faire fire*, which illuminated the monstrosity.

Shump shoots and lands a critical hit against the chimera from his hiding place, but Hank -- who moves out of cover to attack -- misses. The thread-headed monster landed and counter attacked the two mercenaries, breathing fire again and then lashing out with horn and claw attacks against Hank. The barrage would have killed a lesser man, but Hank stayed on his feet thanks to his orc bloodline.

Seeing his friend in danger, Shump charged up and landed a mighty blow that distracted the monster. Meanwhile Fargrim took the opening to heal Hank using his divine word.

Enraged by Shump's attack, the chimera breathed again, scorching Hank and Fargrim, both of whom fell to the ground, dying.

Burgell unleashed his taunting psychic attack on the chimera, claming that "your father was a smelly goat." It worked, staggering the creature. Then Shump piled on the attack, shouting "For vengeance's sake I spit in your eye" as his long sword struck home.

The chimera breathed yet again, splashing fire across Shump and Telthanas. The half-orc Shump, some how, some way, stayed on his feet. The chimera continued its attack, lashing out with a claw that should have hit, but another well-timed barb from Burgell distracted him.

Furious, but badly wounded, the chimera took flight and tried to flee out over the ocean.

Finn, with bardic inspiration swelling him with confidence, fired an ensnaring strike from his crossbow. It struck the chimera, causing vines sprout from the wound and wrap around the creature's wings. Crossbow bolt plunged deep into the creature killing it even as the vines constricted and the beast fell from the air and into the ocean below.


Player Characters

  • Burgell Nackle: 1591 xp
  • Fargrim Frostbeard: 1591 xp
  • Finn: 1591 xp

Non-player Characters

  • Telthanas: 795 xp
  • Hank Ironvow: 795 xp
  • Shump Bloodoath: 795 xp



  • Coins: 900 copper
  • 3,000 silver
  • 1,900 gold
  • 120 platinum

Art objects

  • Gems: 7 green onyx worth 50 gp each
  • Art: 1 silver set of animal figurines worth 250gp (woodland animals: deer, fox, wolves, rabbits, etc.)

Magic items

  • Ring of Xaxxan: - This ring is comprised of dozens, if not hundreds, of small iron barbs that crisscross one another. They converge around a small metal plate with a stylized "x" on it. Burgell recognized this as belonging to an ancient order of demon worshippers known as the Order of Xax. The ring itself functions as Ring of Mind Shielding.
  • Medallion of Thoughts
  • Petrified Rabbit's Foot: A petrified rabbit's foot that functions as a Stone of Good Luck.


  • There is no Charge action, but there is a Charge-related feat.
  • Monster lore? House rule: Nature rolls for natural beasts, Religion for undead creatures and Arcana for magical creatures
  • Delay vs. Ready: There is no "Delay" rule in 5th Edition. Instead there is "Ready", which lets you prepare a single action as a re-action, with someone else's action as the trigger.
  • Dryad Name Generator
  • Evergold Portal: Dragon Names
  • Saint Handraleo