As Zed Mandrake approached the same campfire he’d approached at “end of day,” for the last dozen or so end of days, he thought to himself:
These guys? Seriously? I mean, of course these guys. That was the plan, wasn’t it? Wasn’t it? I think I’d have had a more creative reveal than this. Nevermind.
Zed Mandrake was a man of many plots, many schemes, many plans; it was easy to get lost in the spider web of brilliance. Surely his plot twist would come along on cue.
These fools have no idea how close they were, perhaps I can spin this to my advantage – maybe get that stick in the mud Dagger off my back.
The group of adventures huddled around the campfire and listened to the drivel from Crim, and Dagger did all the work talking them into lending their skills to the cause, especially that Mustachioed one.
It’s like his Mustache keeps sizing me up.
Led to the silver river, they jumped in like lemmings and came out attuned to Rainscour proper. They led the way past the grey ashen trees and to the old community building. They even worked out a simple plan, attempting to claim the Crimson Key for themselves. Dagger hackles were raised about that, but Mandrake was confident his opportunity would come.
Dagger can’t focus on them and me at the same time.
It was almost as though the adventurers weren’t really helping. Dagger and Mandrake made short work of most of the Pained Statues. The Fey Paladin tried many times to snatch the Key to no avail. That’s when Dagger tried to take things into her own hands.
Literally. Time to make my move.
This was when the wizard stepped forward and surprised everyone by grabbing the key. The monsters felled, they all fell into discussion.
Discussion? Come on! Fight! You know you want to! Kill each other. Wait, where is the wizard trying to go.
The wizard had no interest in sharing the key. He was making the Mandrake getaway.
He’s stealing my exit!
Before his prize got away, Zed Mandrake was able to suggest a Shadow of a Doubt among the wizard’s companions.
Ex-companions. At this rate, he’s promoted to antagonist, and I’m their new hero! Huzzah!