Chapter 6: Balloon Fight! / by Anthony Morales

Our heroes begin their flight to Thornbyr to find a mural that might describe the Yuan-Ti god-killing ritual. Their flight is interrupted by pirates.

At the Skorra airport, Lord Kellen Omvor and Rinley Three-Eyes meet them to see the heroes off. Lord Kellen awards them 100 gold pieces as thanks for their help in Kenvik and to further their research. They update the team with news of the Yuan-Ti. Their leader is named Hasatha. He personally led the attack on Kenvik and announced the return of the Yuan-Ti. Rinley and Omvor suggest the heroes meet with Salvador Ironfist In Thornbyr. They describe the dwarf known as a reliable, “gets things done”, mining consultant. 

The group boards the ship, The Frigid Frikka, And are given a tour and in-flight safety instructions for emergency water landings. At lunch they meet Evelyn Vinewood, an elf who introduces herself as a merchant. Macro cozies up to Evelyn. She takes a liking to him, so much so that she hires the heroes to guard her shipment - valuable medical supplies - she's concerned that her rival may attempt to steal it. She offers a 50% coupon at her store as payment. Adahn flexes his muscles in a display of strength, accepts the offer and heads down to the cargo hold. The gnome and wizard get seasick after lunch and decide to join Adahn to watch over Evelyn's cargo. The gnome spends the afternoon puking through a porthole. 

After dinner, Leon, the cleric, relieves Adahn from guard duty. Adahn discovers someone entered their room and rifled through his backpack. Nothing was stolen. He interrupts Macro's efforts to charm the Evelyn elf and tells Macro someone searched their room. Macro stays on the observation deck to plot his further wooing of the Elf. 

Soon after, the lookout spies a fast-approaching ship to starboard. The captain is summoned and he alerts Evelyn. The approaching ship is flying no colors, the captain calls the crew to battle stations. The ship, on an intercept course, gets closer and closer. The sounds of bow strings breaks the silence. Crossbow bolts slam into the ship and a few sailors. Frikka sailors return fire with their ballistas. 

The pirates return fire with only crossbow bolts. They’re moving aggressively to bring their ship alongside the Frikka. Grappling hooks are deployed, the Frikka and the pirate ship are pulled closer together. Pirates leap across to the heroes ship. A melee begins.  

The Pip the druid lights a rope on fire. The sailors fight off the intruding pirates. Valken the wizard lights the pirate ship’s balloon on fire with a firebolt. Leon, Adahn and Valken take up positions by 3 of the grappling hook ropes and are hit hard by pirates. Valken is struck down. Valken’s fire begins to burn a small hole on the pirate ship’s balloon and it begins to lose altitude. The Frikka is dragged down on one side. The heroes frantically cut at the ropes while the sailors fend off boarding pirates. Leon moves to heal Valken, but a pirate strikes him from behind. Leon, a tempest cleric, is surrounded by crackles of electricity and strikes the attacking pirate who falls down dead, burned by lightning. 

The ship lists farther to starboard and heroes cast fire spells, magic missiles and cut at the ropes. Men fall to their deaths. The ship is pulled down farther and farther. Pirates frantically board the ship to escape their sinking ship. As the final ropes are cut, the Frikka lurches to port. Macro is thrown across the ship, Pip is thrown overboard but catches the railing. Adahn pushes his pirate off the ship. Pip slips but grabs some netting and hangs on and climbs back up onto the deck. Frikka sailors begin to corner the pirates, and their captain. Adahn, after pushing his own attacker off the ship, turns around rushes towards the pirates and pushes the pirate captain off the boat. In shock, and with no where to run, the pirates surrender. They're tied up and escorted to one of the cabins. Evelyn, looks overboard and says the pirate captain was her main rival.