S04E09 – The Slavers’ Nest Of Melanides

The heroes defeat the cultists, negotiate with a black dragon, and eventually free the oasis from cultists. After some rest, they leave for their next stop: an oasis led by a sadistic dragonborn who is also into slavery.
2010-10-23 – ⁠2022-08-12 finished

The grueling battle continued. Silver Heart got rid of his chains while the attention was focused somewhere else a few feet away. Once he got free he tried to help but as soon as he saw blood nearby his irrational fears made him faint. After the group killed the two snakes that had been taking bites out of them for some time now and after Bruce saw her life flash in front of her eyes they managed to put an end to the life of the cultist chief that was leading the sacrificial ceremony.

Meanwhile a few steps away from where Silver Heart had been going to be offered as dinner something huge hit the wall for the third time and, a few hissing seconds later, a big hole and a powerful acidic stench invaded the room. A pissed off young black dragon appeared through the wall and presented herself as Netridi. The group, aware that all the artillery had been used prepared a valiant escape plan. Bruce courageously ran towards the passed off Silver Heart and after getting a good grip on him everybody ran towards the exit door at the back of the storage house. As luck would have it at they met the butler and a group of guards that were coming for rescue. After a tense negotiation with Netridi the dragon flew away. The group proceded to loot the more than 10 bodies that were laying around and later worried about injuries and met Zurk who had been busy all day with Shona in private affairs.

The next morning Zurk thanked them again for getting rid of the cult in his oasis and wished them a nice trip. The blacksmith also approached them with some extra beer for the trip and advice for Feral and Zandor for their future encounter with the hopefully still imprisoned demon.

The group then left the Oasis of Zurk, crossed the big chasm and travelled through Eastern Red Sea towards the Oasis of Melanides. Hadi warned them during the trip that the next oasis wasn’t the most pleasant place to be. It was known to be a slavers nest and Melanides, the old dragonborn female who owned it loved seeing other people fight to death for her own pleasure in the oasis’ huge arenas.

The group finally arrived to the oasis and once inside they tried to stay below the radar. However, during their stay Hank, the tattooed dwarf asked them to go with him to see someone who might know about his past and, specially, his father. The group agreed and after crossing several bridges over arenas full of slaves and gladiators they arrived to an old two stories house that looked wizardly in the outskirts of the city. An old dwarf opened the door and, a few seconds later, he recognized Hank. Once inside and with some local beer to cheer their moods the old dwarf told them that Hank’s father was part of the group who imprisoned the demonic being that the Cult of the Snake is now trying to liberate. After they captured it his father drew a magical map all over Hank’s body that accurately showed how to reach the prison and how to leave. Hank asked then how could it be that the map changed all the time even when he looked at himself in a mirror and the group came to know that the ancient civilization that built the prison had such wonderful knowledge as to allow them to build strongholds with changing architecture.

After hearing the story and discussing about it briefly the group returned to the caravan with Tenari so near and a looming adventure to the old city that looked more and more near each day.