"The Ettin" (Downtime Ep 5)

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Barely a moment had passed to heal up their wounded. Thunderous footsteps echoed through the cavern, and the ettin, a massive two-headed giant, reared both its snarling faces towards the intruders to its den. It slammed a club the size of a tree into the ground.
GB had kept concentration on the spell that had enlarged Cyl’s body. A flicker of light reignited at her chest, and a warm yellow glow filled her towering stone form. With a wild and confident smile, she stomped forward and rushed the ettin with her arms outstretched.
The iridescent shell on Saxi’s back burst open in a flutter of delicate wings and she leapt into the air. Saxi landed up on the wall, level with the ettin’s face, and one of its heads twisted around to follow her. It only made it halfway before Cyl bashed into it from the side, wrapping her arms around the ettin in a bear hug and taking it to the ground with her. Dust kicked up around them as Cyl wrestled the creature into a headlock. Well…one of its heads, anyway.
Barely noticeable amid the clash of ‘titans’, Finkoo crept into striking distance and stabbed the ettin in the leg with his dagger. The creature snarled, struggling in Cyl’s grip, and kicked out with its foot. Finkoo held on dear life and heard an unpleasant snap as he twisted the blade in deeper. For a moment, he gloated that he’d struck some oddly brittle bone, but when he pulled the dagger out, he found it had broken off at the hilt. As he scrambled away from the ettin, Finkoo cursed under his breath. The acid from the ooze monster had done more damage to his weapon than he’d thought. It was scrap now.
Lark was tired, his energy for spellcasting spent. For a moment, he muttered to his bear/focus Dermot that the goddess Ursali seems to be very stingy on granting him her magic sometimes. He never saw wizards or clerics have as much trouble. Grumble, grumble...
He may have been exhausted, but he was not out of ways to protect his friends. Raising his shield, he took a post beside the ettin’s club, bashing at it to steal its attention every chance he got. The trunk of a weapon slammed into him, but Lark remained steadfast, his feet digging into the dirt.
GB reached into his pack and withdrew a vial on a string. Inside was a small dark fleck of a flea, crawling and skittering inside the glass. The mere thought of the little creature sent chills down GB’s skin, and he shook out his coat with a mutter of arcane words. A gray cloud of particles burst from his fur as if he’d been dunked in ash. As the ‘dust’ made a leap toward the ettin’s leg, it became clear that it was, rather, a swarm of insects. They scattered across the creature’s hide, biting and hissing.
The ettin convulsed as tiny bites leeched poison under his skin. The sudden, uncontrollable twitching gave Cyl the leverage she needed to pin the rest of the ettin’s body to the ground.
The ettin continued to flail, reaching up with its club and crashing down on the closest target. Lark had his shield raised, but the bone-breaking weight sent him to the ground. As soon as the concussive pain swept over him on the dirt, though, an instant later it was replaced by warmth. A soothing, healing presence. Lark glanced across the battlefield and saw a blaze of pink scales rushing in. Pesk had her holy symbol raised above her head, healing his wounds with a single word.
Cyl reached around and sent a hard, stone punch into the jaw of one head. GB barked out a wave of reckless magic, and blinding colors rippled from his mouth and across the ettin’s other face.
Lark and Saxi both struck with divine smites. Every bruise and scratch the ettin dealt out was quickly healed with a word from Pesk. Once prone and held and partially blinded, the party made short work of the vicious monster.
Triumphant, and barely worse for wear, the party made their way out of the cave. Cyl, now returned to her normal size, helped Lark haul a couple bags of sulfur, while the others set up camp. As promised, their fire soon brought Zreet to their location. Lark greeted Zreet as his favorite boss again and went in for an awkward but enthusiastic hug.
Pesk and the party informed her of the day’s events: the hunt for Tyrael and the invitation that Cyl offered to him (via letter) to speak to the resistance at the beer forge in order to find a more peaceful/better solution to his need for revenge. They told her of their barter deal with the goblins for specialized concealable weapons, and of the ooze and the ettin they had just slain together.
They spent the night resting and getting to know one another better. Finkoo kept to general small talk while working on notes for more concealable weapons, and for his Glitter Dispenser Unit to utilize more dangerous ammunition.
Lark and Cyl gabbed for hours about painting and art. Lark drew a painting of the lava and the acid-leaking ooze and the ettin fight, giving it away to Saxi as a souvenir. He explained that he never really wanted to save his own paintings, but wanted others to enjoy them.
At some point during the evening, GB skulked off, and the others watched in the firelight while he chased after a bug with a jar in his mage hand trailing behind. When he returned, he showed off the firefly he’d caught. He hoped to develop a new spell, using it as a component. The party discussed if the type of spell he could develop would change depending on if one referred to them as fireflies or lightning bugs, or as GB called them, illumi-gnat-ies.
As the sun rose on the mountainside, the party made their way back to the goblin commune, and then home to Cinderhaven.
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