20th of Hollow, Just after dawn
Ignax, Cotter, and Gorg-nik pursued the escaping goblins towards the lower levels to find hobgoblins already in the tower and a makeshift barricade at the base of the stairs. Gorg-nik returned to the top of the tower while Cotter and Ignax trapped the middle levels. Up top Theadras and Hannah used the catapult to attack hobgoblin groups across the camp.
With their help, the war golem was able to escape from the trap the hobgoblins had set for it. A group of hobgoblins riding fiery horses, nightmares, dashed in and out of its range, keeping it occupied as more hobgoblins retreated for the tower. The group leader rode a worg that seemed to be made of smoke and all of them vanished and reappeared as they moved about the battlefield.
When a flare rose into the sky over the original assembly point, the nightmare riders broke off their attack on the war golem and bolted for the camp where the generals, the observers, and the war golem pilot watched over the battlefield. Hannah and Ignax descended the outside of the tower where she summoned her elk steed and he transformed into a dire wolf to pursue the hobgoblin riders. Behind them Cotter, Gorg-nik, and Theadras dumped the catapult over the edge of the parapet onto the mass of hobgoblins below and then made their own escape from the tower.
It soon became clear that the hobgoblins were as intent on baiting the war golem away from the camp as they were on actually damaging the attackers’ headquarters. They succeeded at the former but the delay gave Hannah and Ignax enough time to catch up before the hobgoblins could do major damage to the latter.
Their arrival at the camp has already become legend. This is the scene:
Hobgoblins on fiendish beasts of fire and smoke raise havoc amongst the Kolos Jamordans, splitting the defenders into two huddled groups. The guards hold their own for the moment but these riders appear and disappear at will and the situation is precarious. Then, over the hill, a vision appears. An enormous wolf surges into view, dark against the fiery backdrop of autumn trees. Then a warrior-woman riding an elk crests the ridge. Her armor blinds with the reflected dawn. The sword in her hand glows with its own light. Immediately, this lady, her elk, and her wolf charge one of the attacking nightmares, rolling it. The hobgoblin rider is thrown from his mount to be savaged by the wolf who knocks him down again and again. The warrior woman loses her mount but dispatches the fiery horse from on foot. The hobgoblin strikes the wolf hard enough to break the spell on it, transforming the beast into a devilish creature, a tiefling who blows a poisonous breath into the hobgoblin’s face. The hobgoblin breaks; he runs. His compatriots pick him up but the attack has been disrupted. The war golem arrives, the hobgoblins flee, and no more Jamordans will die on this hill today.
This is just one of the stories the soldiers from this battle are already telling…
how the wizard calmly called down fire to obliterate watchtowers and gates
how the dragonborn’s fiery breath melted hobgoblin defenders and how lightning, arrows, and moonbeams fell from the sky to shatter the rest
how the group drove an enemy caster from the field before he could unleash his own power
how they captured a tower, turned the hobs’ own catapult against them, and then dropped it on the hobs for good measure
and how the Lady of the Blazing Forest and her devil-beast broke the hobgoblin counter-attack
The hobgoblins were prepared for a war golem. They had a pit, a catapult, and a retreat plan to clear the field once the war golem arrived. They were not prepared for the party. The group was unable to contain Detrian but thanks to their actions, fewer than half of the assembled hobgoblins escaped. The attackers were even able to capture some alive and while most of these were killed by clay golems following the letter of their last order, a few remain to question. The party has the thanks of the home guard general, the grudging respect of the war golem pilot, and the gratitude and awe of the soldiers by whose side they fought. Now they are going home.