Cannibalskunk rode hard, dust trailing from his large, well bred riding horse. Its mane glistened in the moonlight, its chest sheen with sweat. This opportunity would not last long. Paelias was only 5 feet ahead of him, leading him to where his answers lay. With a raised hand, Paelias slowed them quickly, bringing the horse to a stop and dismounting.
“Just over that Ridge my friend, is what we are here for. The Grand Symbol awaits us. According to the scout I hired in winterhaven, they have 4 guards, two that are always at the door, and two that patrol the perimeter. No one knows what we will encounter inside.” Paelias said with a strong determination.
“Well, I dont see any reason in beating around the bush, and we may loose the symbol if we dont act now. We will sneak around the back, ambush and disable the gaurds, then sneak around to the front and clear the entry way. After that, its up to Bahamut.” Cannibalskunk replied courageously.
With a nod, Paelias turned and stepped into the shadows, cannibalskunk close behind…
It had been a week since Cannibalskunk had escaped from Turno, one week since his fated arrival in fallcrest. During his training, both martial and divine, The grand symbol of Bahamut had been stolen. For years to follow, the search for the symbol carried on with no success. Soon the day came for Cannibalskunk to leave the sect and venture forth, to protect the innocent and spread the divine word.
Shortly before his departure, Cardinal Camaroon appeared in his doorway, holding a very important missive from the Grand Marquis of Bahamut. The symbol had been located at long last. though the specific location had yet to be found, its general location was Fallcrest. For his first assignment, Cannibalskunk had been tasked with retrieving the most holy of relics for the Church. He had been Honored.
Cardinal Camroon stated flatly, “Your Contact in Fallcrest will be Father Paelias, a local cleric tasked with gathering information. He has had only a few days with the information, but hopefully he can learn more by the time you arrive. If you ride hard, and focus on your goals, you should reach Fallcrest in three weeks or so. Be Careful. Bahamut guide you, bahamut clear the skys.“
With a bow, cannibalskunk replied, “It shall be done, Cardinal. Bahamut guide you, Bahamut clear the skys.“
A knock at the door awoke Cannibalskunk with a start. it was Father Paelias, bearing news that the location had been found. they must leave with great haste as the perpetrators were preparing to leave by morning light.
Spotting the first of the guards, Cannibalskunk leapt from the darkness, broadsword slashing silver streaks through the night. A muffled thud is all that paelias had heard before Cannibalskunk was back, dragging the first of the guards to a hiding spot. These vile men wore the colors of Orcus! Death was their specialty and now the presence of undead was pretty much guaranteed.
Noticing a large store room behind the main decayed temple, Cannibalskunk moved in to investigate. He was, despite his carefulness, spotted by an archer upon the rainments. With a little help from Father Paelias, Cannibalskunk made it to the roof and made quick work of this archer. After a rough dismount from the roof, they inspected the storehouse for anything useful.
Not caring one way or the other, Cannibalskunk opened the only box marked by runes. Without a warning, but expected, a gout of fire roared from the box, destroying what ever was in the box. Thankfully, the symbol could not be destroyed so easily. After restorative prayers from Father Paelias had been completed, they made their way to the front door, deciding to divide and conquer the gaurds individually.
Father Paelias was knocked unconscious, leaving two guards to battle Cannibalskunk, things started to look grim. but with a roar of courage, he drove them both before his blade, spilling their blood upon the ground. After making sure his foes were dispatched he found Father Paelias, and Laid his hands upon him. A mighty burst of radiant energy poured from his hands sealing cuts and lightening bruises, rousing Paelias from his unconsciousness.
With a sturdy yank, Cannibalskunk helped Paelias to his feet. They took up positions on either side of the entryway and pryed open the doors. The sight before them was despicable. Zombies of all races filled rotting pews, the stench of death thick in the air. A gaunt, pale man stood at the pulpit, delivering a rousing speech to these mindless corpses.
Trying to sneak in, Cannibalskunk realized plate armor really gives you no chance for stealth. With a rousing shout, the zombies rose from their chairs, and turned to face them both.
With a smile, the evil cleric hissed, “Kill them, my children and dine upon their flesh.”
With a strong heart, Paelias grasped his holy symbol, Raising it into the air, Chanting to Bahamut. With a burst of light, radiant energy poured from the symbol, igniting undead flesh, utterly destroying the abominations.
With a flick of his wrist, Black hands poured from the evil clerics palms, latching onto Cannibalskunk and Paelias. The Pain was more than Paelias could take, collapsing to the floor, blood pouring from the black clawed hands, fingernails digging deep into the flesh, draining his life essence.
Charging into battle with a ferocity normally reserved for barbarians, Cannibalskunk drove the blade through his enemy, gravely wounding him. With a hideous gout of laughter, the cleric spoke.
“your friend is dying and only you can save him. in a few moments his life force will be depleted and you will be left with a dead friend. I suggest you take a moment to…” with out a chance to finish, the greatsword streaked, severing muscles and bone, removing a still talking head from its shoulders.
A scream from Paelias was the last noise he heard. When Cannibalskunk turned, his friend had died. Black Hands fading into dust, the magic expired, but Cannibalskunk was too late. A wave of sorrow poured over him, in ways he never expected. Paelias had given his life to recover the Symbol of their order and sadness was not what he deserved. Reaching down and wrapping his slender fingers around that which they had come for had unexpected reaction.
A light of pure white shot from the medallion, engulfing Cannibalskunk, lifting his feet from the ground. as he hovered, his wounds began to close, and a ghostly shape took physical form. It was an apparition of bahamut!
“Cannibalskunk, You have served your order with dedication and strength, but you have let a fellow member of your order fall. What do you have to say to this?” Bahamut asked, his voice shaking the dust from the timbers.
“Lord Bahamut, Father Paelias knew this was a possibility and came willingly to save our most holy of treasures. We both knew that the ultimate goal was retrieving the Grand Symbol. I would have expected him to do the same, if our roles had been reversed. If I could have saved both Paelias and the symbol I would have sacrificed my own life willingly.” With shame painting his face, Cannibalskunk knelt, lowering his eyes from this burning vestige of justice that stood before him.
“You have chosen correctly, and for that, You will be rewarded. You can now call upon me in your time of greatest need, and the armor of Bahamut will protect you and your allies, so that their fate is not the same as Paelias. Go forth and serve me well, Cannibalskunk, for you have a great role to play in the upcoming years. Stand Paelias, and be healed!”
A light from the eyes of bahamut poured over Paelias, restoring his life and bringing him to his feet. With a casual nod, Bahamut vanished, leaving two stunned Eladrin standing in the room…
- 90 GP
- Grand Holy Symbol of Bahamut +1