Devron came awake with a start. His chest hurt – it burned with an agonizing sharpness. And he couldn't move his legs! He shifted his gaze from the dim, blackened ceiling and tried to get his bearings.
He was lying on a slick stone table that reeked of blood, his legs bound with leather cords. Strange symbols were etched and painted on the walls of the cramped chamber; knives and other sharp tools were arrayed on a nearby table in haphazard fashion. He had to get out of there. His pulse hammered in his ears. Don't panic. Don't. Panic.
Groaning, Devron sat up weakly – knocking over a couple of the sputtering candles ringing his body. He surveyed the room. Four robed elves lay collapsed on the floor. Unconscious? Dead? He didn't want to wait around to find out.
Groggily, he worked his bonds loose and tried to get his numb legs to obey him. The reassuring pins-and-needles told him that they would be fine. As he waited to recover, he considered his chest. He had to know, but was terrified to see, what hurt so very much. He cringed as he peeled the shirt from his flesh: a great deal of blood had dried and crusted to the now-ruined garment.
The Spiral of Melora had been burned into him.
As he stared in disbelief, someone on the ground moaned. Ignoring the insistent refusal of his legs, Devron sprang from the dais and frantically hobbled outside.
Home. He had to get home. He muttered to himself as he stumbled through the darkening forest. How could he have been so foolish? His plan had been good, but there had been too many unknowns. He should have brought Borté. What were the cultists doing to him? What had stopped them? None of it made sense. He continued to try to riddle out the night's events as he staggered through the brush.
As he approached his village, Devron heard the clear ring of steel on steel. No! His quest forgotten, he started running - praying that his family was alright. When the town finally came into view, Devron gasped. The whole of it was aflame.
He tore down the hillside to his house - a small hovel at the edge of the hamlet. He listened through the door and heard his mother's soft sobbing. He quickly slipped inside and found her cradling his brother's limp body on the ground, rocking back and forth.
“Mother?” he croaked, “What is--”
She cut him off with desperate glance, “Raiders. Two of them. Your brother tried to keep them outside. Fought and nearly killed one of them. But the other stuck him in the back.”
“Where did they go?”
“I tried to keep him inside, but he wouldn't listen. He's so much like your father was. So damn brash.” she continued, not listening. She started singing softly to herself, stroking his brother's damp head absently.
Devron left her sitting on the floor, went to his room, and grabbed his knife and sling. He left the cottage behind and strode purposefully into the street. He scanned the buildings, looking for a sign as to where those marauding fiends had gone off to. He wasn't outside for more than a few moments before a bout of cackling stopped him in his tracks.
“It's a mite late to be outside, boy. Ya could get hurt.”
Devron turned to face a giant of a man, covered in a combination of hair, pelts, and grime - with the exception of a bright, incongruously rich, red kerchief around his throat. The man cackled again and pulled out a bloodied machete.
Quickly, Devron considered his options. With his small knife, he didn't have nearly the reach of his opponent. Yet, he was also too close to use his sling. And this fellow's partner was likely to show up at any moment.
He could only glower as he gave ground, his hatred for the man welling inside of him. Then suddenly he felt a pulling in his chest. It was a strange feeling: as though he and the raider were linked in some way. He could feel the scoundrel breathing. Could feel his warmth. The raider continued his slow, halting advance while brandishing his long-knife and clutching his side. Devron continued backing away.
“Was that your older brother in that shack? Awful different ...the two of you. He actually put up a fight! I bet your Ma'll put up an even better one,” his eyes glinted suggestively as he cackled some more.
Devron's despair was quickly replaced by hot rage. He gave himself over to it and, with a howl, lunged at the raider. Time slowed to a crawl. The world held only the two of them. He didn't notice the two men that emerged from the alley. He could only see the sweat on the raider's face. Smell the stink of blood and offal on him. As his clenched fist inched towards the raider, it pulsed once with a purple heat. A heartbeat later, an arc of black lightening screamed across the gap between the two of them and exploded into the raider's chest.
Mouth agape, Devron dropped his knife. He shuffled over to the smoking mound of squirming char that used to be the raider, and nudged it onto its back with his boot. A small gout of smoke escaped from its lips and its eyes stopped twitching.
Instantly, the world turned a vibrant green. The village disappeared. It was like he was in the the dream-forest in which he had just met that woman. But this wasn't a dream. It felt real. Was real. He took a few steps, taking in his surroundings. He was in the bottom of a valley, seemingly the same as his home. Except that there were no buildings. He took a few more steps and the world blurred - he was again amidst the dark of his burning town.
Disoriented, he turned around and found himself several paces from the smoking remains of his attacker. He lifted his gaze and noticed the two men-- now staring at him, holding weapons aimed at each other's throat. One was dressed as the brute he had just slain, the other was swathed in dark leathers. As their eyes met, the leather-clad stranger winked at Devron, let loose a whoop, and released an impressive barrage of swift sword strikes that the raider only barely deflected – tripping over himself in an effort to retreat.
Laughing, the Stranger twirled his short sword into his sheath and approached. “Ho there! My name is Kaio. That's quite some trick, you have. You'll have to show me how it's done,” he barked and flashed his teeth in a wolfish grin.
Devron could only stare at him.
Male Half-Elf Warlock
Maximum Hit Points: 26
None (street clothes)
Dagger: +2 vs AC [-1 strength] [+3 proficiency]; damage 1[W]=1d4-1 [strength] range 5/10 1 lb (Light blade); usable off-hand; light throwable
Thrown: +3 vs AC [0 dexterity] [+3 proficient, damage 1d4
Hand crossbow: +2 vs AC [0 dexterity] [+2 proficiency]; damage 1[W]=1d6 range 10/20 2 lb (Crossbow) Load free
Sacred Flame +0i [wisdom] vs reflex
Eldritch Blast +4i (constitution / charisma) vs reflex
Eyebite +4i [charisma] vs will
Witchfire +4i [charism] vs reflex
Curse of the Dark Dream +4i [charisma] vs will
i Implement-usable power. Apply a bonus as appropriate.
Basic Ranged Attack: By weapon, damage 1[W]
Bull Rush: -1 [strength] vs fortitude
Grab: -1 [strength] vs reflex
Move grabbed target: -1 [strength] vs fortitude
Escape: +0 [acrobatics] vs reflex / -1 [athletics] vs fortitude
Warlock's Curse [Warlock][minor action]
Eldritch Blast [Level 1]
Eyebite [Level 1]
Spend an Action Point [free action, not in surprise round]
Sacred Flame [Half-Elf]
Witchfire [Level 1]
Action Point Tally:
Daily Item Powers Per Day:
Death Saving Throw Failures:
More about Devron: