Last night, the party finally confronted Chancellor Wintersbite. After making their way through his many puzzles, they were confronted with over a dozen Wintersbite clan vampires. Before Rook could suicidally charge the vampires and Turn Undead, The Bashar kicked a side door down and linked up with them. The Bashar, Wil, and several soldiers from each quintile of the City of Dragons formed a wedge, driving the vampires aside and leaving the party enough room to get by into the final sanctuary of the evil chancellor.
Upon entering the large, dragon-skull-shaped room, the party discovered where the missing alchemical explosives were – right there, underneath the outlying wall separating the City of Dragons from all the undead out in the Valley of Bones. A small black box rested among each group of explosive barrels, clearly designed to detonate them.
Chancellor Wintersbite sat at the back of the room, his throne on a raised dais, which was decorated with two fist-sized gems, one a sapphire and one a diamond. His lieutenants stood on raised platforms, staring down at the party menacingly. “I wasn’t planning on detonating these explosives for weeks” remarked the Chancellor “but you’ve forced my hand.”
The party rolled for initiative.
Notdem went first, and aimed a spell at the explosives near the platform that the nearest vampire lieutenant was standing on. The fireball was huge, but luckily it did not set off any more explosives. The lieutenant, Prask, was burned slightly, but regenerated from this damage quickly. He and the other vampires leapt into combat, doing heavy damage to Sered and Duncan. Chancellor Wintersbite sat imperiously on his throne and watched.
After some time fighting, and disarming explosives, the party had downed two of the three lieutenants, with only Prask remaining. Prask ran west to a set of explosives to rearm them, calling for help. Wintersbite reluctantly rose from his chair and entered the fray, starting by dominating Notdem’s mind and forcing him to rearm the explosives that he had just disarmed. After he had done this, he drew his dagger and stalked glassy-eyed toward Sered.
Luckily, he was able to break out of the spell before stabbing his Deva friend. They ran to the north to disable the large caches of explosives in the corners of the room. Mordrin chased down Prask, pinning him down in the corner. Duncan valiantly kept Wintersbite’s attention, striking back at him with equal viciousness. Through this, Rook was able to keep everyone alive, even using his own life force to heal his allies.
Just when things were looking good for the party, Mordrin struck at Prask with one of his vampiric powers. Prask, recognizing one of his own, shouted out to Wintersbite to alert him. Wintersbite instantly turned to mist, rushing a great distance in mere seconds to Mordrin. “Come to me, my child” he commanded, for he recognized his bloodline.
Mordrin fought valiantly against the vampiric control, but he could not refuse. He staggered slowly toward the chancellor. It was at this moment that Mordrin noticed something – Wintersbite was missing a tooth.
“What? Could it be? After all this time? It is! Bwhahahahaha! After all this time!” Wintersbite cackled.
Mordrin could not help himself. He presented Jesk to his new master. Wintersbite took the dagger and became whole – doubling in size. Cackling with laughter, he outgrew and shed his armor in seconds. He reverted to his true form, an enormous, vampiric white dragon. The stories about Jesk were true – it really was made from the fang of an ancient dragon, a consort of Tiamat. Chancellor Wintersbite was that dragon all along, but he was forced to pose as a mere dragonborn in his weakened state.
Things were not looking good for the party. They were unable to harm the dragon through his frosted, undead scales. Duncan was grievously wounded when Wintersbite released his dragon breath, an unholy flurry of frost that somehow sucked the life out of the paladin.
Just then, the entrance doors to the room were flung open, to reveal the Bashar and Wil. They had defeated the vampire guards outside, bloodied and tired but standing and alive.
“Holy crap, a dragon! Wil, get the dwarves!” the Bashar shouted. Wil was back in an instant, helping the mountainfolk wheel in a giant ballista. As they lined up a shot, the great dragon took to the air. He careened across the room, picking up Mordrin and Lieutenant Prask in his claws.
“We’ll see how well the city of dragonborn does when its walls are rubble!” Wintersbite roared, triggering the explosives.
Several giant fireballs filled the chamber. The walls shook, the ceiling cracked and fell inwards, revealing the gloomy night sky of the Valley of Bones. Wintersbite swooped away, his vampire lieutenant and poor, afflicted Mordrin with him. Coinspinner went with Mordrin.
Luckily, the party had disarmed enough explosives to stave off major damage to the walls. The rubble from the ceiling sealed the hole after the dragon had escaped, and the valley remained sealed.