Aeon Zen

Apocalypse Hydra

The hydra starts to shift as it takes its time undigging itself from the hole in the swamp. Swamp water falls between the cracks of the opened earth, revealing the gargantuan body of the beast beneath its five chromatic heads. Aishe Malinova asks the creature if it’s here to punish someone but it falls on deaf ears. Sensing danger, the Freak Squad attack the beast, but its metallic-like skin and toughness proves to be impermeable to arrows, steel and magic. During the attack, the party sees streaks of light crossing the sky at different distances on the horizon.

Aishe does a daring attempt to infiltrate the hydra’s head by shooting her chainreach weapon like a grapnel into one of its nostrils and using the retraction to position herself up there. The toxic fumes emanating from the green head’s nostrils is almost palpable, and start working its poison on Aishe, even after magical protection. The respiratory membrane is tough and too difficult to pass, an Aishe is unceremoniously exhaled away into the ground. Rad Longhammer quickly aids her and heals her broken bones.

The party tries to force the heads to attack each other, but the monster treats their attempts like minor inconveniences, even though Tobin does manage to get the frosty white head to attack the venomous green one, but stops immediately. The reaction proves that the monster is cunning enough to assure its own survival, and now it looks around the horizon with purpose. Some parasites attached to one of its necks prove to be a nuisance and the beast scratches them towards the party.

These creatures prove to be way more than a nuisance for the party, as they start attacking Mazith from all sides. Parasites born from chaos, their mere presence creates confusion in Mazith’s brain, causing him to confuse targets. Yet his thrusts are true and keep the monsters away. One of the monsters, a creature made out of mouths and eyes, spews acid to Aishe and Mazith and incapacitates them. Meanwhile, Tobin and Rad use visual tricks and profanity as bait to distract the hydra. The parasites are eventually defeated once the party reconciles efforts away from the hydra, who finally finishes scouting and undigging its body and starts heading west. From her vantage point near on the green head, Tobin sees the towering structures of Timbermoor in the horizon.

A magical portal opens up and out comes Feyis Goldenflight, who looks concerned for Dorito, since one of her contingency spells cast on him sent her a warning message about him being in too much danger. The party explains that Dorito has been swallowed and is currently on its way down the neck of the gray head of the Apocalypse Hydra. Feyis is surprised at the sight and looks for the rest of The Aforementioned. Walter, Hans and Krog return with her from the portal, which closes behind them. Walter the Magnificent uses a scroll to teleport their weapon arsenal to their location, and shares them with the Freak squad as everyone gets ready for battle in a desperate attempt to save Dorito, or too recover his corpse.

They catch up with the slow moving Hydra and Hans Torres fires true and sharp magical arrows, but just like Tobin’s, they bounce off, harmless. Walter grabs his double-handed epic sword and slashes the beast’s side only mildly, to his shock. As if its mighty defenses weren’t enough, the hydra starts to regenerate! The group tells Krog Bellybottom to become bait, and grudgingly the heavily armored dwarf gets swallowed by the grey head, the one Dorito got swallowed by. Aishe and Tobin jump onto that head. Tobin’s arrows irritate the beast’s eye, while Aishe gets some unexpected help from Hazmat, Mazith’s Dad, and the gypsy and the ghost both use her spiked chain to dig into the eyeball’s hard tissue like a saw. Meanwhile Mazith has used his jumping skills to go over the hydra’s neck carrying a rope, the other end in Walter and Rad’s hands. Mazith jumps but his weight is not enough to lift the warriors! Fortunately, Feyis’ Bibsby’s Stone Fist spell grabs Mazith and his rope and yanks them towards the ground. Walter lifts into the air, grabs his sword with both hands, and attacks the neck that Aishe and Tobin have been working on exposing. Dorito’s corpse falls. Rad’s radiant fire prevents the wound from healing, allowing Krog to also fall through, and saving him from a very unpleasant death, subject to the mind-attacks of the gray hydra head.

Everyone avoids the hydra’s bite attacks until once again it loses interest in the heroes and continues to Timbermoor. Feyis Goldenflight sends a magical messenger to the city to warn them, and The Aforementioned decide to stay to slow the monster down while the Freak Squad gallop ahead into the city, Dorito’s corpse in hand.


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