~A short story based on actual in game events that left me with a 4 man party Through TOB~
(The actual dialog is included...spoiler alert)
As the last glimmer of light set the clouds ablaze, Viconia squinted behind an upheld palm. Relieved to have the domain of Lolth at her back, she secretly admired the spectacle of orange on fire.
"There is no roof to this world", she grumbled (as if to mask her inner 'weakness'),"I feel as if I shall fall into this sky of yours sometimes".
She took one last look , as the diminuendo began to give way to a twilight, and the first hint of starlight welcomed her home.
"It's perfect!", declared Mazzy, as she admired the gift before her. Her own sword Angurvadal echoed the horizon, as it's flames began to offer a contrast to the darkness, that was slowly creeping upon them. The last throws of day reflected off the dragonscales of her finely crafted armor and shield; ...and then...were no more.
Keldorn shifted his weight to his left side, even as Carsomyr bore the brunt. Unsure of the moment he kept silent.
Jeheira suddenly strained to listen, even as she silently bid her companions to be still.
Jan's "deaf" ears began to twitch wildly, desperate to detect what had caught the Druid's attention.
Suddenly the silence was broken, as the intruders revealed themselves from the cover of night:
"YOU THERE! I recognize you! You are the scoundrel that attacked me for no good reason near Baulder's Gate and made off with my equipment!", thundered my accuser.
"Know that I am Drizzt Do'Urden, and that I have done nothing in the surface lands but fight against evil that I see.. including bandits such as yourself!"
"You did such a thing Brodey?", said Keldorn; hastily willing to accept drizzt account without question.
"This man is well known as a hero across the realms... what were you thinking? Do you never stop to consider your actions?", he continued, with condescending indignation.
"Drow roaming the surface, even the most noble, should expect expect an occasional misunderstanding." Jaheira pointed out."I am sure this can be worked out Brodey... I suggest you try.", she finished, with a pleading look.
"As a Drow on the surface, he should expect such treatment. If I tracked down every rivvil who has wronged me, I would end up doing little else.", Viconia pointed out , matter o' factly.
"It took me along time to track down my scimitars, and an equally long time to track down you... and now I have done so." spit Drizzt, as our eyes locked in a battle of their own.
"Come, now, Drizzt... if this be the dire bandit who jumped ye while ye fought the gnolls, then let us dispatch him and be back to the Ten Towns, where we are truly needed." interjected Bruenor, impatiently.
"Careful, Drizzt... he looks more powerful than ye remember, perhaps. Ye wouldn't want to be startin' something ye cannot finish.", Said Catti-Bri cautiously; even as Drizzt and I continued to size each other up.
"Do not worry Catti-Bri, I did not bring you here to join me in vengeance... though the half-elf may deserve such, I came seeking an answer", returned Drizzt; with a self righteous tone, and apiercing sideways glance at me.
"Why did you attack me, half elf? Are you truly a simple bandit, greedy and nothing more? If that is the case, I shall be disappointed.", alleged Drizzt, with a confidence that would go along way to swaying most any juror; yet a self deluded sureness, none the less, as I was THERE!
I paused for a moment to consider well the weighty dialogue, and the thoughts and feelings of those around me; but most importantly the truth.
Now as I strained to recall the events, I remembered this pompous Drow demanding help from me in a situation that was clearly in hand. The air that radiated from him was that of a self proclaimed king, who scoffed at anyone who would not acknowledge his "due respect".
I remember refusing him aid, and that he began to whine like a child, going on about some appointment and undue burden... yada yadda yadda.
Now what happened next is a lil' muddy to say the least. I did taunt him, true enough: something about 'maybe the gnolls had the right idea' (rough recollection). What followed, though, is very clear: Drizzt aggroed!
Responding in kind, I rushed in among the gnolls into a revertible whirlwind of blades, and engaged Drizzt directly, even as Minsk,Kivan,Coran,Yeslick, and Viconia began their ranged barrage. By the time the last gnoll dropped Drizzt was already badly injured; and soon, so was I.
He chased me like a maniac possessed, as I strung him along like a kite on a string. When he neared death, he began randomly attacking the others, but we were not deterred.
It was Kivan who landed the final blow, and what can I say, "To the victor belong the spoils"; or rather, what can I think.
To answer this buffoon's charge, was to admit to being a "greedy","dire bandit", who strikes randomly and without cause. His pompous bloat sickened me, yet I held my calm for my companions sake, as well as for his associates. I was already judged before ever having said a word on my own behalf.
Finally after a long pause I answered thus: "I did kill you, and I'll not explain myself further. Leave me now and you'll leave this place alive."
"Eh? The half-elf is threatening us? Do you think he is serious?" quarried Wulfgar.
"It seems that be the way of it, Wulfgar, me boy. "Hah! We've faced Hellspawn an' worse in our time... ", bragged Breunor. "perhaps your git here needs a comeuppance at our hands, Drizzt", he continued in eager anticipation.
"Indeed. This time half-elf, I am neither alone, nor preoccupied with gnolls. Let us see where a fair battle takes you!", sassed Drizzt.
"This man is a ranger, and a being of worth, Brodey! A hero that I will not aid you in destroying! I stand against you in this!", declared Keldorn.
"I... have not heard of this drow, or his supposed good deeds. I pray that you are correct in your assessment of him, Brodey, drow or no drow...", replied Mazzy as she readied Angurvadal, for the imminent assault.
"This drow is well respected by the Harpers, Brodey. I will not assist you in fighting him. I will return to Athkatla; consider your idiocy before we speak again." trailed Jeheira as her form disappeared in the brush.
"It shall feel good to test my strength against this one... I have heard of his prowess. Come let us achieve glory this day!", cried Viconia; they were already descending upon us.
I directed the charge at Guenhwyear, Drizzt's shadow tiger.
"For right and honor!" bellowed Keldorn: There was a loud whoosh, as Carsomyr passed by my right ear and buried itself deep in the ground, just behind my peddling feet.
We made short work of the cat, by the time Keldorn caught up to us; among a flurry of Drizzt's arrows and magical shafts from Catti-Bri; Wulfgar was tossing axes while Regis was wielding his magical staff.
"Clannnggg" resonated the Flail of Ages upside Keldorn's head: Viconia grinning fiendishly, as a girlish giggle escaped her throat.
Almost simultaneously, Angurvadal found its mark; piercing Keldorn's plate, searing the wound.
Sweat and burned flesh wafted upon the air , as my own twin scimitars, Spectral Brand and Belm joined the assault. The first wave of attacks left Keldorn badly wounded... he fell hard during the second; as Jan joined the party with a shot from his crossbow, Firetooth.
During our private lil' "internal affairs meeting", Bruenor decided to start beating on my backside, and now, so was Drizzt... and hitting hard!
I dashed away with Bruenor on my trail. Regis started to attack Viconia then suddenly darted in my direction. Drizzt followed while Mazzy beat on his backside.
I downed a pot and turned to face Regis; Viconia had caught up to lend a heal as Regis resumed his attack on her... Drizzt turned to face Mazzy.
"RUN!", I yelled to her. Predictably Drizzt gave chase.
She didn't get 10 yards when Regis fell, my heal still inbound, in spite of Bruenor's "love taps".
"Unhand her!", I growled as I descended upon him.
Meanwhile Mazzy (aided by 'Paws of the Cheetah' had run a full circle east then north, west (behind Wulfgar and Catti-Bri) , then south again. My heal (yes the same one) finally connected.
Viconia and I attacking now in unison.
Meanwhile Mazzy lost Drizzt (she ran too far ahead), and now Drizzt was on top of Jan.
Anngghh... Angghhh, Jan squealed in pain, as he began lead the chase. "This reminds me of that time..."; I didn't catch the rest as he disappeared beneath a bush, even as Drizzt crashed 'through' it.
Mazzy downed a healing pot and joined us, just as Buenor took a dirt nap.
Mazzy and I were on top of Wulfgar now, as Viconia began to cast a group heal. By the time it connected we were moving on to Catti-Bri.
A very bloodied Jan was grateful to catch his share of the love as he happened to pass behind us. to start his second lap of the 'guantlet'.
"I think we make a fine partnership! Like Drizzt and Wulfgar! Elminster and Volo! Ha! We should go into the mobile vegitible peddling buisiness together!", he yelled.
Oh the irony, I thought, as I glanced back at Wulfgar's 'D-face'; my hands busy chopping as I did a double take and stole another glance (It kinda said 'told ya this one was trouble').
As I turned my attention back to Catti-Bri, she folded almost in relief; perhaps the sight of her fallen comrades or the thought of the event to come.
I asked Viconia for one more group heal before we engaged Drizzt, Jan huffing and puffing to the south.
As he came around west, the three of us tried to grab aggro; unfortunately, not before he caught up to Jan.
"Your knees are mine!" He cried out in defiance, as he fell gasping.
"Er... don't mean to startle you or anything, but all this blood spurting about is mine!", but he was gone!
Mazzy and I rushed Drizzt, while Viconia began to raise Jan.
By the time she began to heal the confused thief, Drizzt was near Death, and quite arguably, devoid of all reason:
"Come friends we must fight together", he bellowed in grandiose fashion... his dead companions made nary a twitch in response to his rallying cry.
Bleeding badly myself, I sprinted, hoping to catch a moment to down a healing pot, when suddenly Drizzt halted.
A quite gasp escaped his lips, as he starred down in disbelief at Mazzy's blade, protruding from his stomach: cooking his innards, as the squeaking of expanding gases belched smoke from the fatal wound... Drizzt collapsed and stirred no more.
As Jan was re-donning his gear, Viconia caught the 'possum' from the corner of her eye.
Exposed, Keldorn tried to roll to grab Carsomyr, but Viconia stepped firmly on his arm. Mazzy joined on his left side, effectively pinning the weakened paladin on his back.
"You must long for the caresses of my healing touch now, eh Keldorn... Hmm.", taunted Viconia, as a drop of acid, from her flail, splashed upon his cheek. "Or perhaps Shar herself?"
"How many times now, is it that she has heeded my pleas, and stirred you from your not so eternal slumber? Would you spurn her graces now I wonde...", but she was cut short.
Angurvadal had found its mark again, this time in Keldorns throat.
Kneeling down to stare into his eyes Mazzy spoke: "It matters not to which patron claims him today...Shar, Torm, or even Arvoreen."
She raised her eyes to the heaven's and continued with a loud thundering voice, shaking with deepest emotion.
"Hear me well. I Mazzy Fenton give testimony that I fought by this man's side, treated him with respect and placed myself in harms way. on many occasion, for his well being."
"In return, while facing one of my greatest trials, he did raise arms against me and joined with my enemy to do me harm."
"This reached excuse for a man dies a traitors death here today... may his actions follow him to be judged solely by the one who claims him."
Mazzy's words cut Keldorn deep.. much deeper than Angurvadal ever could. The outline of Mazzy's face faded fast and soon only dead eyes returned Mazzy's stare.
I placed my hand upon her shoulder, " We are not weaker after today's events but stronger."
Mazzy stood, sheathing her sword and whipping her tears.
Walking to the Drizzt party, I wisely changed the subject, " I don't see any upgrades here do you?". Glancing back and forth.
Mazzy picked up Tansherons bow, scrutinizing it thoroughly; firing an invisible arrow into Keldorn's corpse..."Nah, Gessen is better".
"That is beautiful armor!", Mazzy stated, though almost inquisitively, gesturing toward Drizzt.
"Yes is served me well, for many a battle.", interjected Viconia.
"It sure did... and these swords were put to good use when I struck down Serevok", I replied.
Mazzy eyed us both, as I swung Twinkle and Icingdeath about for old times sake.
"Spoils of war", I said as I turned to her shrugging.
"Drizzt and Brodey have no love, to be sure; but its Drizzt's pride and hot head that turned their disagreements into violence", Viconia said with a quizzed look, cocked head and reassuring smile.
"True enough", they attacked us, not to mention invading our much deserved moment of peace.", Mazzy pointed out as she rummaged.
"That being said, I don't despise his reputation, and certainly not his companions... such a shame", I said.
"Given that they are revered so, I have no doubt they will be missed, tracked down, and sent on their way again... hopefully a little less prone to rush into another conflict", I offered.
"Perhaps if you left their equipment alone this time, they would be less inclined to accuse you of petty theft", offered Viconia; to all of our surprise.
"Absolutely, I have no doubt.. yet still... I have to wonder..."
"Yes?", replied Viconia, as everyone waited for the second shoe to drop.
"I wonder... How much do you think Ribald Barterman would offer me for a +5 Holy Defender?", I said blinking innocently.
A slight pause... then laughter ensued.
"We can leave a note... like a scavenger hunt", said Jan. It will read:
"... and nary a fancy explanation. Just the goods, bare and plain".