I'll have Slaughter for Breakfast

Breakfast at Beni's


A slow deep roar He woke to the gentle and familiar sounds of crickets filling the night outside. Beneath his head, he could feel the chest of his sleeping companion rise and fall with the rhythm of her. She gurgled like a warm, trickling delta in the warm summer breeze of her shallow breath, beneath the war drum of her heartbeat.  His arm was wrapped around her waist and tucked under her back his hand resting palm up between her shoulder blades. The length of his middle finger rested along the ripple of her spine, the tip docked in the gentle hollow between two of her vertebrae. 

He took a breath to enjoy the moment's peacefulness, the way their body's curves nested together; sychronized his breath with hers. In the softness of the straw mattress beneath them he slowly curled his finger, drawing the long claw at its tip to rest where the tip of the finger had, took another long deep breath, closed his eyes, and sunk the length of the claw into her spinal column.

Deep in her chest, the war drum stopped, the delta ran dry, and the breeze halted. In the calm before the storm, Rhask smiled. A deep roar, like a hurricane, built as her lungs filled with air. When they were full, and not a fraction of a second earlier, the hurricane stopped. Then the deep, heavy Ba-BOOM of her heartdrum began, loud and strong. A pulse of heat, like a shockwave, shot through her as fresh blood rushed to her muscles. This was the moment he anticipated most. With his body wrapped tightly around hers, feeling the warm blood pulse through her he waited for the reflex, the tightening of her muscles.  The storm in her chest blew through the reeds of her throat and a brief cry of shock bashed against the wad of burlap in her mouth.  

He remained wrapped tightly around her, waiting for the fight. Even as her breathing and heartbeat settled into a fast, panicked rhythm she did not struggle. He wriggled his finger, the claw still embedded in her spine to the quick. The wind in her chest screamed out of her, again muffled by the gag in her mouth, but she did not struggle to get away from him. Again he wiggled his clawed finger and again she screamed, but she did not flinch. 

Rhask climbed on top of her, removing the obstruction from her spine with another satisfying squawk, and straddled her limp body. She remained bound to the head and footboards by the wrists and ankles. Even in the darkness of the unlit apartment, he could see her eyes were wide with shock and horror and tears welled in them as her nose flared with quick panicky breaths. Still, she remained limp.

He rose from the bed and went about the room, lighting a few candles to set the mood. He disrobed, drew a dagger, and returned to the bed. He held the dagger up where she could see it and though her eyes did not flicker, the tears, the quickening of her breathing, and the whimpers that came with it told him that she was quite aware. He cut her bonds free and moved her to the center of the bed, propping her head so that she could see the length of herself, before cutting her dress from her. Then, sitting next to her, he raised his bloodied claw to her whimpering, tear-stained face, "You will be a great delicacy" he said, quietly, and sank the claw into her chest.  


It was a beautiful clear night beneath Sandum & Brothellad as Rhask followed them west through Demon's Borough toward the inner city wall. The streets were quiet to the wall and through the Servants District. This poorer part of the city's center was in such disarray that Rhask scarcely noticed when he passed to it through the large archway from the half-destroyed Dragon's Borough. 

He wandered west, through the streets until he heard the sounds of the more nocturnal rogues district. Laughter & music like that about a watering hole wafted through a warm haze of pheromones, It called to him on a primitive level. His more evolved lizard brain, however, reminded him that a quick bite of adrenalized elf meat could compare to the tender, succulent, terror-saturated breakfast he'd enjoyed only a few short hours ago.  Instead, he turned north, knowing there was no western exit from the city, and within the hour passed through Scholar's Village and the outer stone walls of Healey. 

Again he headed west, across the grasslands toward the Druid's Grove, drawn by the moons. The stars glittered above him as prowled the tall grass, crossing some fifteen miles throughout the night. Now as the sun began to brighten the night and the terrain became more clear, Rhask came upon a road that he followed west. Just before dawn, he heard the rumbling of a cart approaching from behind him. He turned around and held out his thumb to request a ride but as the horse-drawn wagon approached the driver directed it to the opposite side of the road and sped up with the crack of the reins.

Natural 20 - Nature Check

The sun rose and the day warmed, making him lethargic when he spotted a small cluster of stones with a hollow where he might rest for a bit in the shade and regain some of his energy. Once within the shade of the stone outcropping, Rhask quickly noticed that this was a cavern. A thorough investigation of the ground within the entrance revealed the tracks of some form of elven-like humanoid that was using the location as its lair.

Crafting a makeshift torch from a small branch and some tightly wound tallgrass that he held in his off-hand and, with his new shield strapped to his back by the straps of his crossed pouches, Rhask drew his shortsword and crept inside. 


From the cavern entrance, the passage sloped down on an eastern heading down into the darkness. He was thirty feet down the cavern when he felt a slight draft from the wall on his right. He looked about the area and quickly found an iron rod protruding from the wall just above the ground that opened a stone door when he stepped on it. 

The room inside was black but Rhask could feel the presence of another in the room and he waived the torch about, disorienting the incoming attacker enough to avoid the first attack. He did not, however, see the second dagger until it was carved across his forearm, almost causing him to drop the homemade torch. 

Natural 1 - Darkling Attack

With his prey now visible in the torchlight, Rhask carved a heavy swath across the small cloaked creature, causing it to cry out in pain. He snapped at the creature with his hungry jaws but the hoved beast was too quick, disappearing into a dark corner where Rhask found it licking its wounds. It blocked his sword attack but in doing so, took the blade of its dagger across its abdomen.  They continued to battle, each taking heavy wounds until a deep stab to its already wounded abdomen caused the dark creature to slump to the floor. He stabbed the creature once more, to be sure it was dead, then quickly searched the room for any other attackers before slumping down in the opposite corner.

Rhask smelled the brimstone and was able to shield his eyes as his prey began to smolder and smoke before bursting in a blinding flash. When it was over all that remained of the creature were two daggers and a handful of copper. 

After a short rest to tend his wounds, Rhask looked about the thirty-foot square room finding nothing further in the room, he moved to the simple wooden door on the east wall but found it locked. He pulled a small leather-bound apron from one of his pouches and unrolled it onto the floor, selecting a pair of fine tools he went to work picking the lock. When the door clicked open, he quietly gathered up the roll and tucked it away, gathered up his torch and his sword, and continued through.

Exploring the room by torchlight for threats, he discovered that it was nearly sixty feet wide and extended east for thirty feet before it was interrupted by a chasm the width of the room that he very nearly fell into.  Holding the torch over the hole he could see that the room continued into the darkness on the other side of the twenty-foot gap. Rather than risk falling into the unknown depths of this chasm, Rhask decided to try and find another way around and returned to try another door in the last room. 

The open archway in the southern wall appeared to open into another room but when he held up his torch, the light did not extend beyond the doorway.  He pushed the torch through the doorway but the flames did not seem to light the room. He reached further and the knuckles of his torch hand bumped against some invisible force.

"Fuck you, Loser!" The words tore through his thoughts, causing him to recoil away from the door. He tested the invisible door with his sword, which passed easily through the archway up to the hilt, but when his hand tried to cross the threshold it was met with another unseen obstruction. "Are you still here, you fucking goat turd?!" Again the insult bounced around inside his head like a projectile in ricochet, though the pain this time was not as severe.

Natural 20 - Wisdom Save against Vicious Mockery - Rhask

Rhask sheathed his weapon and attempted to claw at the invisible force field. As he drags his nails along the invisible surface of the obstruction a long string of expletives rang through his head; though they gained in intensity the longer he maintained contact he was able to tolerate, and eventually resist the pain. He made a strong swipe with his claws and the barricade responded with "You worthless puddle of cock slobber!"

"Mother-Fucker!" Rhask responded in pain. Now angry, he wound up and delivered another strong clawed strike but his hand passed through the air without incident. He stepped back and saw that the light from his torch was now lighting the floor on the other side of the archway. He reached through the archway to see if there was still an obstruction but the path appeared now to be clear.

Rhask entered the room, leading with his torch; the sword is drawn and alert. He heard the creature attack from behind and curled up like a turtle, using the shield strapped to his back as a shield, but the glancing blow struck the back of his torch arm. He snapped back with his sharp teeth and followed with a wide swing of his sword but struck only darkness. He brought the torch forward to flush out his prey but found only the dark corner of the room. Out of the shadows, he felt a blow to the back of his head and the torch went out.

He lay nestled in the cool mud of the mire, the gentle trickle of fresh water over his legs and the delicate kisses of tiny minnows between his toes soothed his road-weary feet. Above him, a cool spring breeze carried the distant smell of petrichor, and above that, the glowing faces of Brothellad, her younger brother Sandum peeking over her shoulder, gazing down upon him, and he up toward them.  Brothellad called to him, like a parent waking their sleeping child, urging him to rise; calling him home.

Natural 20 - Death SaveNatural 1 - Perception Check

He woke to lie face down in the dirt surrounded by darkness. He did not know how long he had been unconscious, so he waited several moments in silence, listening for any sign of his opponent before he was convinced enough of his solitude to move about. With his torch now out, seeing anything in the room was an impossibility, so he quietly felt around on the floor for the rogue branch, wheezing in pain from his still-healing wounds. After several moments of crawling on the floor, he found two vials of liquid but no torch. 

He found his way to the corner near the door, fished around in his pouch for his healing potion, and drank it down, the warm liquid bringing him a little more energy. He checked his belongings, trying to feel out if anything had been pillaged from him but the only items missing were his sword and torch. In the darkness, he drew a dagger and cut strips off his sleeves and pant legs to use as bandages. He felt stronger after that short rest, and his assailant not having returned, he risked lighting one of the candles he'd taken from Beni's bed and breakfast and searched the room. As well as his sword, he found a strange glass orb, a bowl full of strange coins and silver bars, and a bottle of mead, all of which he took. The torch was there on the floor, of course, but it had been stomped into useless pieces.

Leaning against the wall next to the door, holding a candle in his shield hand for the small amount of light it could offer, he stepped through the doorway. The Creature he'd killed here was now gone, but there were drag marks in the dirt that lead back out through the northern door of the room. Rhask went to the unexplored west door and peeked around the corner with his small, dripping light.

The tunnel continued for ten or more feet but the small flame could not light much beyond that so he ventured forward. The ten-foot-wide cavern curved in a long arc before ending in another opening to a room beyond. As he approached the opening, the candlelight reflected off of something on the floor, and he found a fine string stretched across the opening a few inches from the floor. Set into the floor, he found three small holes, and on cutting the string spears thrust out from them toward the ceiling.

Sheathing his sword, and resting his candle upright in the dirt, Rhask grabbed the rightmost spear and snapped it off at the floor. He tested the feel of it in his hands before continuing through the narrow opening. He found himself in the room with the chasm but on the other side this time. Just inside the door, he found a pair of wire cutters, presumably used to set the trap. litters about the floor he found three burnt or stomped-out torches and he was able to scavenge enough resources from each to craft a proper one. On the eastern cavern wall, near another wooden door, he found three shattered arrows and collected those as well.

Natural 20 - Perception Check

The door opened to another ten-foot-wide cavern that descended down to a narrow passage for about thirty feet before he saw another lever on the floor, very similar to the first hidden door he'd found.  The tunnel continued east for another twenty feet before turning north.

Rhask stepped on the floor lever and the wooden door opened to another empty ten-foot wide passage that opened to a cavernous room after only twenty feet. In the center of the room, a cloaked figure crouched over something, sobbing uncontrollably. 

Natural 20 - Sword Attack

Without hesitation, Rhask threw the spear, stabbing the creature in the back, and then drew his sword as he advanced to attack the beast again. With the spear in its back, the Darkling arched wailing in shock and pain. Rhask thrust his sword deep into the creature's side. and then withdrew to a shield and torch forward, defensive stance. Heavily wounded the creature flailed wildly toward the torchlight and the reptilian easily ended the beast with a fatal thrust to the throat, holding the thing aloft on the tip of his sword for just a moment before it slumped to the ground.

Another lap about the entire cavernous complex confirmed that he was the last living threat. He made camp in the Chasm room, it having the greatest number of exits, and dined on the two elven-like creatures.


Back to blog

Leave a comment

Please note, comments need to be approved before they are published.