The party crept back out into the courtyard. Lightly pressing footsteps still caused clouds of dry dust to form underneath the light of the two suns in the clear purple sky. A tiny sliver of orange rising over the walls might have been a moon.
The odd landscape went unnoticed by most. The companions’ eyes were focused on the giant dog-like beast in the yard. Unlike the first time they entered the yard; the behemoth was no longer sleeping. He turned to the party and started moving towards them; he licked his chops with a loud smack. Saliva drooped from both corners of his mouth. The companions instinctively fell into a defensive formation and prepared to receive the hungry looking beast. Flintus’ eyes narrowed and his lips parted into a sneer as he pulled his shield in front of him as he waited anxiously. Gilthanas had deftly pulled a wand from his sleeve and looked frustrated as it failed to act the way he intended. He gave up on it as it fell and his rapier and mace came just as quickly to his hands.
The situation escalated as constructs ran into the courtyard out of the entrance to the main throne room. The party was familiar with the flesh constructs from their previous encounter, but the metal golems and mechanical men were new. Neyteri and Verla shared what information they had about the unwelcome guests with the other companions.
The emotionless golems showed no expression when their pet dropped to Zeph Lee’s flurry, the fighter’s shield bash, and the scout’s precise strikes. Verla and Neyteri kept busy with buffing the front line. Gil needed some healing from the life oracle. The once oracle now sorceress cast a spell that made Flint double in size.
The new golems proved to be fierce competitors. Whereas the oversized dog was wounded easily, the golems showed little signs of damage with each attack. Direct attacks with magic had no effect either. Neyteri and Verla strategically limited the golem’s access to the party by surrounding the companions with walls. One golem managed to break through the barrier. As the other golems took advantage of the opening Flint tripped each one that poured through. The party had some success against the fallen constructs but progress was slow.
From amidst rising dust, drips of sweat, clashing of metal on metal, and exploding golems, Bael had emerged with a fury. With a stoic face of determination, he poured a faint yellow liquid from a vial into a half full flask that he had grasped in his right hand. The two liquids turned a green color and instantly started to bubble. With a quick and accurate toss, the flask hit one of the golems in the face and made an impressive explosion. Acid stretched out in all directions and poured down the monsters body. The golem showed no signs of slowing despite its visibly disfigured face and caustic fumes emitted from its frame.
The engagement lasted only a few moments longer as the constructs all fell to the ground instantly. The party looked at them expecting them to get back up. They quickly dismantled them in any case. Unsure of any other dangers they slowly explored the throne room and the rest of the castle. Their warped counterparts had apparently left to their own realm by way of the portal in front of the throne. To assure that they couldn’t easily return back the companions dismantled the portal and then left to go back to their own realm.