Journal of Sora Goldflame, Servant of Lathander
I am once again updating my journal while I have the chance so that if the worst should befall me, hopefully whoever finds it can get this information to the Harpers in Berdusk. The Cult of the Dragon must be stopped, because whatever they have planned for the Sword Coast bodes ill for all who reside there.
After evacuating the villagers from the temple of Chauntea, we led them down to the river. Martigan was still severely injured despite my ministrations as by this point my divinely granted healing spells and abilities had been all but depleted. Because of this we had him lead and protect the villagers while the rest of us moved ahead to secure the way to the secret tunnel. This proved to be a prudent move, for as we approached the entrance to the secret tunnel, Ura and Xanadu noticed an ambush party of kobolds and human cultists lying in wait.
Ura crept forward, seeming to meld with the shadows, and managed to silently slay three of the lizard-like kobolds with her blades and thrown daggers. The rest of the ambushers noticed her after that, and that when Xan and I leapt into action barraging the kobolds with ranged spells and sling bullets. Between the three of us we made short work of the cultists and kobolds. We went back to let lead the townsfolk to the tunnel and get them into the keep while the way forward was safe.
When we exited the tunnel into the keep, we were met by Escobert and one of the keeps guards. He was glad to see us, and so many of hsi fellow Greenest residents; all told there had been 58 people taking refuge in the church, far more than we initially thought, and we had gotten them all back safely. We handed our Dragonclaw prisoner to him whom Escobert was eager to interrogate. He told us that he would attend to the prisoner and that we should rest and resupply in the courtyard.
I saw to Martigan's wounds using the greater resources on hand at the keep and then told him to rest for a while. He had come very close to death and his body needed time to recover from the shock of it and for some of the herbs and analgesics I had applied to take affect. Afterwards, I grabbed a small meal of bread, cheese and some watered down ale and took to writing this update.
Escobert has come out. It seems he has news . . .
The old dwarf was able to get the cultist to talk. It seems the Cult of the Dragon's aim is to collect loot for the Queen of Dragons, a title held by the evil goddess Tiamat. The cult has a clutch of dragon eggs that they are keeping under guard at their camp, though there is no dragon at the camp; apparently the one here tonight somehow had its aid enlisted by one of the cult's leaders. All of this information is alarming and shows that the Cult of the Dragon is up to something potentially devastating for the Realms.
Something's happening, Escobert is shouting . . .
By the gods, I have never witnessed anything like that!
Firstly, the shouting was because some of the raiders had managed to break through the keep's outer defenses and breach the courtyard. People were panicked and fleeing to the far corners of the keep and into any open door they could find. We started fighting our way through the cultists and kobolds and secured the sally port. The gate had been damaged by the invaders, so I began repairing it with my mending orison while Xanadu and Ura held off a counter-attack by the cultists. The battle was tough, but we sealed the gate and slew the remaining attackers.
As overwhelming as that was, we had no chance to catch our breath. Only moments after the last of the invaders fell, we heard a thundering roar as the huge blue scaled dragon wheeled around in the night sky and came swooping in toward the keep, it's belly glowing orange and red from the light of the flaming village below. The hairs on the back of my neck began to stand on end and I could feel a static charge in the air as the massive dragon opened it's toothy maw and began to gather eldritch energies of its lightning breath as it prepared to blast the keep and its defenders with electric death.
Then I heard the stretch of sinewy cords and the powerful twang of a bow releasing an arrow. Ura, maybe undaunted and unphased by any terror of impending death because of her orc upbringing, had pulled out her bow, taken deadly aim, and released a shot with a mighty draw in the blink of an eye. Her arrow sailed through the air too fast for the eye to follow, flying far and true as it sank deep into the dragons jaw, piercing the underside of its mouth. The monster roared in pain as blood gushed forth and it sharply changed it's course to fly away from the keep, and out of range of any orcish arrows.
Truly we were blessed by the gods, for I thought that was the end of us all; thankfully they had the foresight gift us Ura as a companion this evening. We watched the dragon fly off, eventually losing sight of it's silhouette against the starlit sky. The beast apparently felt that whatever obligation it was honoring did not include taking further injury from Ura or Greenest's other defenders, for it has not returned, and I pray that that doesn't change. We are taking some time to rest and tend to our wounds, for all of us took numerous injuries during the keeps defense. But at least for now, it seems we may be through the worst of this night. I can only hope I'm not proven wrong.