After leaving Lady Wind the heroes traveled North towards the Burnt Glade where the final portal lay. Vale and Brona were home in Syla Thalor, but the wood elves felt uneasy. Something was not right in these northern woods, there was an undeniable foreign presence here. They proceeded carefully avoiding the many goblin patrols and outposts.
The Burnt Glade, was a massive swath of the Great Wood that lay in ash. A cleansing fire had cleared this portion of Syla Thalor long ago and magic had kept the glade from regrowing. A lone, steep hill dominated the center of the great glade. Massive burnt trees and tall broken stones littered its summit. A few small fires cast an eerie glow atop the hill. In the night sky strange storm clouds gathered over the glade, swirling like a vortex.
Brona held her cleansed darkwood acorn in her hand, it would need to be placed within the dark pool that no doubt lay among the trees and stones at the summit of the hill. The wood elf druid then morphed into one of her favorite forms, a dire hyena and plunged headlong towards the hill.
Brona was first to reach the summit and see the dark pool of the Black Goat. The inky surface of the pool moved as if it were sentient and seemed far more thick than any liquid. Determined the great hyena let out a growl and headed straight for the pool. The pool’s defenses came swift and violently as bugbear guardians leaped from the trees to intersect Brona. With a groan, like a beast of burdened spurred into motion the trees were revealed to be Scions of the Black Goat, an embodiment her corruption.
The battle was fierce, spells and blades struck against the defenders of the well again and again. Goblin mutants from nearby camps soon reinforced the hill. Zetvosk held the line, his plate armour deflecting blow, after blow. Brona jaws tore flesh and shattered bones, while Vale’s arrows stuck with the force of a hammer against an anvil. Clarion’s blade was silent and murderous as he moved through the edges of the battle almost entirely unnoticed. Bjorndar was an agent of Ulaa incarnate, his goddesses granting him prayer, after prayer. Finally, Wyleros conjured a conflagration upon the hill that made it feel like the gates of hell.
During the great battle Brona would fall for a moment, struck by one of the scions. As Bjorndar tended the druids wounds, Clarion took the acorn and attempted to plunge it into the pool. His hand with the acorn did not break the surface of the inky pool though, it was tough and rubbery. The pool then fought back, restraining the tiefling rogue in its rubbery tendrils against a nearby stone.
Few goblinoids remained, the last of the scions had crumbled beneath the tidal wave of attacks the heroes had unleashed. The pool began to twist and rise, it’s dark surface began to open and birth The Black Goat’s avatar and her three zealots onto the battlefield. Had the heroes spent everything they had? Or would they have enough strength left to finish this?