Brothers Found
Commander Olwyn nervously stroked his white beard. He had led Blaze to the chapel deep within the Jarl’s captured keep to speak alone. Although they had just met, the Commander couldn’t hide the creases of concern on his weathered face. “Two of your traveling companions have the evil within them. And a lycanthrope to boot! As a Son of Pelor, how can you tolerate this?” he asked cautiously. Blaze felt a pang of illness in his stomach. All he could think of was to tell the truth. “But there is good in them as well. I believe the evil is temporary, a tool, if you will, to use while we travel through the Abyss. Fear not Commander, I will not let them play host to evil forever,” Blaze said trying to placate the Commander. For he had seen a trace of the Light in both Boudica and Meena just a few short hours ago…

It almost came as no surprise when he saw it. Their path had been a labyrinth of ledges, bridges and staircases with darkness always below. What Blaze couldn’t believe was the size of the minotaur, its hooves thundering down the flight of steps at the party, with shoulders as wide as the staircase and horns the size of elephant tusks. The steps dangled over the black endless maw that is the Rift. This is not going to go well. Meena, at the back of the line, turns steadfast to meet the charging horror head-on. The beast barrels into the formation. Meena is hurled over the edge to certain death. Having watched Mirilda jump to her doom earlier had brought a tug of despondency about Blaze that made him consider joining her. But Boudica had saved the day with a levitate spell. Would she be able to do so again?

Blaze plants his feet and braces himself, not for impact with the beast, but for the burst of light that erupts from his Shield of the Dawn. The radiance is a cannonade completely annihilating the bull-headed monster, its carcass plunging into the oblivion below. “Even here, evil cannot hide from Pelor’s light!” Blaze shrills from the top of his lungs.

And what of Meena? He looked over the edge into the gloom expecting to see nothing but the void. Hope surged in his chest as he saw her fingers gripping the crumbling stone tread. Blaze’s taught biceps swelled as he lifted her to safety. “Praise the Sun, you are alright.”

The Commander nods slowly, seeming to understand, stuck in the Abyss, far from home, you use the resources you have. And although the Commander had 3,000 Sons of Pelor at his disposal, another weapon stood before him. “Aye, I need your help. The giants are returning, the battle is at hand. Would your outfit help defend the Keep and your Brothers?” With faithful resolution Blaze set his chiseled jaw and uttered, “You have my word Commander, we will not yield.”
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Awesome fucking post! I love the connection between the Minotaur battle in the Rift and the overall situation.