The Knight strode confidently into the vale, but slowed his steps as he sensed something different in the air. The hidden valley felt very different today. The wards felt stronger, and the air itself felt thicker and sicker. He slowed as one of the guardians blocked his path.
‘You have been summoned El Verde Muerto, to the presence of our Majesty. He commands your presence in his glade.’
‘He is awake? Why was I not given warning in my summons, I assumed I was to report to the Seneschal again.’
‘He just recently awoke, things have happened, powers have arisen, his senses awoke him.’
‘Then I had best make haste, if you would stop blocking my path.’
‘Of course Ser Knight, make your report, and I am certain I will see you soon.’
The knight moved on, deeper into the valley and the woods. No wonder the air smelled differently, and the wards were stronger. If his majesty had awoken, and sensed danger he would be making certain his lair was protected.
He eventually came to a place where a tall, foreboding and sick looking hedge blocked the way, except for a small archway. It’s height was designed so that all who entered would be bowing when they came into his Majesty’s presence.
‘Ah my Knight comes in answer to our summons. Please enter and take your place.’ The deep rumble almost made the ground shake, and the pool that surrounded his majesty smoked and let off even more acrid fumes.
‘I am at your command your majesty, as always at your service,’ And the Knight knelt before the presence of an enormous green dragon, the true green death, Mokrija.
‘Of course you are,’ the dragon chuckled, a ghastly sound. ‘I have been awoken by the use of many different magics in my land. Not only have the southern invaders begun to explore here, but other forces are at work. I have sensed an ancient magic at work in the plains to the west, awakening forces that have long been gone from this land. Deep in the caverns below us a portal has been opened, inviting dreadful forces of Chaos.’
‘But surely none of these forces threatens your might oh Great One?’
‘If I were to challenge them now on my own they would tremble before my might and perish of course. But to challenge them I would have to make my presence known, and that would invite more adventurers from the south, possibly even armies come to take my land from me. And all of this would encourage some of my brethren to turn their eyes upon my land. Do you see the problem?’
‘Of course Great Lord, what would you have me do?’
‘For now monitor what is happening out on the plains. Send some of the Kobolds into the caverns to investigate this portal. I would encourage these forces to come into conflict with each other and weaken each other before I make my presence known. Send agents out on the plains, perhaps locate the lobos and urge them to attack whatever settlements they can find.’
‘Your wish is my command Great One’
I read an interesting series of articles this week. Talking about Dragons, the different kinds. And it really helped put into perspective just what a threat Dragons should be. Especially the ‘Lawful’ ones. They would not just be lone terrors, instead they would be ancient beings who have amassed great power and treasure. And are willing to use that for personal gain with no regard for whomever gets in their way. And they would even have their own followers, not just monsters like Kobolds.
Now imagine one of these creatures, who has dwelt in a hitherto uncivilized area for almost a millennia. And think of how it would respond as various forces began to emerge in its territory, casting magic spells, wreaking havoc. It wouldn’t just go out and start destroying everything. No, it would first try to play the forces against each other. And would only send its own forces to do anything when it had to. The last thing it would do would be to risk its own precious body in an attack.
This week I have put into place in my own head some canon behind what the boys will begin to encounter. As it all unfolds I hope the boys will have some fun with it all. This weekend they will begin to enter into all of this, unknowing and unwittingly.