Against the Giants

Chapter 10

We are deafened by monsters of rock

The creatures appeared out of the depths of the cavern, our initial view of them obscured by the elemental lightning blasts from the crystal columns. The glowing wisp like things appeared to come from the lightning itself, two of them floating towards us. Two miniature whirlwinds of sand grew as the got nearer, gathering up material from the floor and three vaguely humanoid figures formed themselves from the rocks that were scattered all around the cave.

Wasting no time, Thames charged into battle past one of the whirlwinds, ignoring the sand that blasted his armour cleaner and more rust free than it had ever been, swinging a huge blow at one of the stone monsters, hitting it and vapourising the sandstorm at the same time.

Roaring loudly, Theseus ran at one of the glowing wisps, swinging wildly. Despite its apparently gaseous form, the maul slammed into it with a satisfying smack and a buzz of energy.

Despite being hit by Thames, the first rock monster ignored him and tries to jump across to attack the minotaur. Spotting an opening, Thames strikes with his sword and sends chips of stone flying across the floor. The monster appears to shrink into itself slightly, then explodes in a shower of rock and debris, peppering both Thames and Theseus with shrapnel!

Another rock monster shuffled in from the back of the gave and hurled a large rock from its body at Theseus, hitting him across his arm. The stone explodes as it hits him, just as he is hit by an electrical discharge from a nearby column.

As he ducks to avoid another thrown rock, Thames watches as one of the blue wisps wrapped itself around Theseus and spins him twenty feet into the air, holding him there as he struggles uselessly.

“what da f” he exclaims as the other wisp does the same to him.

The monsters seem to have taken a particular dislike to our armour selling knight and the minotaur, possibly because they were the first to attack them or maybe because they’d heard their rendition of “Don’t fear the Roper” back at the Dwarven encampment. Nonetheless, we were in real trouble if they were taken out of the fight, especially as the rest of the party were still rushing to the fight.

With some well practiced words, I activated my aura and blasted the frontmost stone elemental with my power gained as a victim of the feywild, focusing it to teleport Thames and Theseus to the floor behind it and out of the Wisps’ grasp.

From behind me I heard a “Whoosh” and felt a rush of force pass nearby as he hit a wisp with his force orb spell, causing it to scream in such a high pitch I’m sure that those in the party without Elven heritage wouldn’t have heard it.

Seeing his minotaur friend flying in the air was just too much for Malin, who was by now rolling on the floor almost helpless with laughter. Attempting to pull himself together, the gnome manages to load his sling and fire it at a sandstorm, but his aim is so wild he nearly manages to hit a very unamused Theseus.

Both of the sandstorms zoomed forwards, spinning and inflicting a small amount of damage on Thames as he readied himself for his next attack, while the prayer that Regdar was forming finished unanswered as the words formed a bolt of energy that missed the wisp.

Spitting sand from his mouth, Thames brings his sword up and around in a cleaving assault, striking rocks from one of the stone elementals as well as dissipating a sandstorm. With pieces of itself sliced off, the rock monster falls to the ground and vanishes into the rocks on the floor. Drawing healing power from my aura, Theseus does a devastating strike on the sandstorm, destroying it.

Reforming itself between myself, Erevan and Regdar the rock monster explodes shrapnel into all of us. Erevan is lucky enough to dodge the flying debris, but Regdar and I are pushed forwards into the melee, as I watch a larger rock punch out from it into Erevan’s chest, winding him and the storm of stones moves towards the wall of the cave.

One of the other stone elementals hurls another exploding rock at Thames, which explodes into shrapnel around him.

The frontmost wisp moves towards Regdar, solidifying the air around it into a blade, which slashes Thames and myself. Stepping back, I fire an arrow at the furthest, wisp, hoping to hit it and use teleport the fighters into the back of the melee, outflanking the creatures, but my arrow clatters uselessly into the darkness.

Having got his laughter under control Malin charges past us, rushing the nearest wisp and hitting it with his spear. He feels resistance as he stabs it and his hair stands on end as some of its energy discharges itself through him.

Thames has managed to positioning himself near the other wisp and strikes it with his longsword, but doing little damage.

“ere Theseus. Dese blue thingies is swordproof init!”

“HIT, THEM, HARDER!” roared the minotaur, slamming the wisp in front of him with his maul and flying into a rage!

Moving back from the wall, the stone elemental explodes again with a massive force, throwing us all backwards away from it. Rocks fly from the others, missing Theseus, but hitting him with shrapnel. Standing nearby, Regdar and Malin are also hit by flying shrapnel.

As the wisps swipe the charged air uselessly at Theseus and Thames, I miss again with another arrow. Erevan however, has a slightly better aim and blasts an erupting flare at one of the wisps, hitting it with a huge blast of fire and turning it into an inferno of plasma.

Regdar steps away from the heat and prays for a mantle of glory, causing a blast of holy energy to strike at the rock monster attacking Malin, as well as healing the no longer laughing gnome.

Undeterred by all the flying shrapnel, Thames slams a wisp brutally with his sword, cutting through it and into a nearby stone elemental, then stepping away as it too moves back towards the wall, hurling a rock at Theseus. As with the previous rocks, it exploded hitting Malin and Thames with shrapnel, followed by yet more rocks from the other monsters, filling the air with flying shards.

The burning wisp moves towards Theseus, but strike at Malin and this time it is he who is suddenly twenty feet in the air, spinning gently above the wisp.

“HA! Not so funny now is it Malin!” laughs Theseus as he dips his head to avoid a flying piece of shrapnel.

My cutting words don’t seem to have any effect on the rock monsters, but I help out by making a bolstering speech, which gives the party a little more resolve.

The burning wisp is hit by a magic missile from Erevan, making it scream again and Regdar blasts it with a prayer. Malin suddenly drops out of the air and lands with a thud on the ground.

Stepping away from the further wisp, Thames strikes at the frontmost one, drawing off a small amount of energy. Likewise, Theseus smashes it with a murderous rampaging blow, but it’s obvious that normal weapons aren’t having a lot of effect.

The stone elemental suddenly charges at Malin and explodes, hitting him and Thames, blasting them away from itself. Another hits Theseus with a thrown rock, blasting the minotaur, myself and Malin.

Knocked back into range of a crystal column, Thames was blasted with a lightning bolt while the wisp at the front of the battle attacked Theseus and lifted him into the air again.

Striking the rock elemental with my longsword, I triggered my dimensional step and inspiring success simultaneously. I teleport Thames in behind the monster and the positive effect from the spells allow Theseus to break free of his hold and fall to the ground.

Erevan blasted the wisp with another magic missile, which kills it. Proving they’re not invulnerable to force spells.

Thames recovers himself a little as Regdar casts a healing prayer on him and he draws health from my aura. Then Malin hits the rock elemental with a deadly power strike, shattering it into small enough pieces to kill it.

Trying to outdo Malin in the madness stakes, Theseus throws one of the geode’s he’d picked up earlier at one of the crystal stalagmites. It chips a small piece of crystal off the column and then explodes, damaging it very slightly.

He then throws another at one of the rock elementals but misses, the geode exploding harmlessly in the distance. It throws a rock back at him, hitting him in the leg and exploding but fortunately missing myself and Malin with its shrapnel. We’re not so lucky a second later as another exploding rock hits Thames, hitting myself and Regdar with lethal pieces of rock that cut through my chainmail.

My ears still ringing from the nearby explosion, I cast unluck on a rock elemental, injuring it as Regdar and Malin both hit it with blows.

Attacking Theseus, the remaining wisp forms a missile of air, which whistles into him and cuts his arm. It is then hit by another magic missile from Erevan who has decided to forgo his many fire based spells for the only force spell remaining in his arsenal.

“I apologise for my tardiness fellow adventurers!” Kurrek Drong called to us as he rushed into the battle from the cavern behind us. “Lost my way in all this rock!”

Wildly flailing his maul in a disrupting pattern, Theseus advanced on a wisp, hitting it with a ‘smack!’.

The rock monster attacking Malin vanishes into the floor and reappears between myself, Kurrek and Regdar, who dives for cover as it explodes, hitting Kurrek and myself. The monster then vanished into the rocky ground again, popping up to punch Malin, who is simultaneously hit by a large rock thrown by the other. The blast from the explosion hits Kurrek and throws me into one of the crystal columns. Diving away from the column, I’m hit by a massive elemental discharge from it which causes my arrow shot at the remaining wisp to fly wide.

Bored with throwing magic missiles around, Erevan produces a flame in his hand and hurls it at Malin’s rock monster and kills it with a massive blast of fire. Malin then charges at the other rock monster and kills it with a massive strike, just as Regdar manages to heal him slightly with a prayer.

Kurrek dives through the earth and jumps up to the side of the wisp, summoning a massive surge of mud with his warhammer. Both hammer and mud slam into the wisp, killing it!

It is now eerily quiet in the cavern. The monsters are all apparently dead, but we don’t look much better. Most of us are covered in cuts and bruises from pieces of flying rock and Malin is looking more ghastly than usual, leaning on his spear.

We hole up in the geode cavern for a short while to patch up our wounds and regain our strength then look into a corridor in the corner of the cavern where we find steps that are obviously cut to the size of stone giants, winding upwards into a tower above us.

“Ach, this looks interesting!” Malin yells, and starts climbing. Despite each step almost being his height, the little gnome rapidly ascends and we have to hurry to catch up with him as his noisy clattering up the spiral staircase isn’t going to surprise anything that’s at the top unless it’s spectacularly deaf.

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