Epilogue

Darkness

Silence

The darkness is interrupted by a single light spell, revealing an elven silhouette against the back wall of small room. He adjusts himself on a stone bench. Opening his eyes he whispers: “You are late.”

“It is not my fault they took their time. Plus, everything had to be exactly in place in order for the plan to work as we intended.”

“And?”

“The transformation will be complete within days, perhaps hours. I can feel power like nothing I have experienced before. But I cannot yet access it. Soon, my friend. Soon.”

“Good. I am overjoyed. Then it will be my turn. The first thing I am going to do is find that pesky Halfling and show him the proper way to torture, I mean interrogate, someone. Once he is dead, I can find the talisman and the two of us can complete the ritual. Then we find Flynrich and once he is destroyed Arcane Magicks will be mine.”

“Ours” says the first voice

“Yes, of course. I got a little carried away. Now for the bad news.”

“I have already heard. Zaresh has fallen. I told him many times that his experiments with blood magic would be his downfall. I would have liked to have tapped all of that knowledge Friend had gathered for all those years but I can no longer feel the presence of The Cruor Plane.”

“Neither do I. “

“Also, Gulthias has been properly destroyed in his original time, his tree never formed so the blights are no more. Damn Him.”

“Not true. Wintersplinter yet lives. Along with his Blight Dryads.”

“Good…good. They will prove to be useful allies.”

“But first you must break out of that vexatious prison.”

“That is being taken care of as we speak. Harbin will not fail me as the others did.”

Brief silence

“I must go. I grow weak. Blessings from Tiamat and Lolth to you, Nezznar Black Spider.”

“And also to you, Chlorothra Everlasting Wyrm.”

The magical light flashes bright showing a smiling drow staring into a bowl of water, the reflection of a skeletal dragon staring back at him. Chrlorothra smiles back as the greenish glow fades from its eyes and the room goes black.

—————

Mon Ki would take his cut of the dragon’s treasure and would start a monastery near the ruins of Thundertree once his adventuring days were done. The influx of monks and clerics brought stabilization to Thundertree for the first time in 75 years. The monastery was named Friar’s Solitude and soon Thundertree was called that as well.

Beauford only took a small share of the treasure, a cut of the platinum and a few magic items. While in Neverwinter some time later, he had heard tales of a golden, jewel-encrusted cowbell that had been seen far to east in the lands of Al Qadim. Keeping his goodbyes brief, he left the next morning playing Tinker Tanner on his bandora, the song echoing throughout the Manor House long after he was gone.