“Alright. This Guild meeting is going to start once Aldric gets on. When it does I’m going to ask the questions here and you two are going to wait your turns to answer. If either of you step one foot out of line I will pull a blitzkrieg the likes of which you have never dreamed of. Got it?”
Sabrina turned off her mic and started grumbling to herself to pass the time as they all waited for Aldric to finish doing damage control. It was galling to have to sit there and wait her turn to talk and it was all that stupid Mage’s fault. She was practically seething. The Deadly Nightfall game event that she had been preparing for all these past weeks was ruined. Winter’s Breath Keep lay in ashes and she laid the blame for that on the Mage’s door.
“Stupid midget mage, he couldn’t just let those of us with a capacity to stay awake take things on. Oh no, the gnome had to get involved. If he hadn’t gotten on the cannon before me this whole thing could have been avoided.”
If only she had the last three hours to live again! The encounter had started off so well! The guild had arrived at the keep well before the event was scheduled to start. Matthias had handed out group assignments and Sabrina had promptly requested reassignment. It had been quite an argument using private messages between her and Matthias.
“I am not dealing with that narcoleptic firecracker. He’s like an instant murder death kill. There’s gotta be someone you can switch me with. I’m begging here!”
“What the hell is up with you two? He’s top DPS and you’re top heals. Aldric can hold aggro well enough but if you get a crit heal you’re gonna draw it off him. I need someone with you who can handle crowd control and pull the aggro off you if they need to. That’s Shortios. Suck it up.”
“Sure, he can do all that. IF he stays awake.”
“Aldric talked to me about that conversation you guys had. You need to calm down. Yes we’re going slowly in the raids but that’s not his fault. If the rest of our DPS could keep up with Shortios it wouldn’t be a problem when he nods off. We’re working on that so just be patient. In the meantime we could always do some lower level raids.”
Realizing that she wouldn’t be getting her way she had decided to swallow what she had been about to say and focus instead on the encounter. She had been preparing and looking forward to this event for over a month. If all went well then everyone in the guild would get not only a shiny exclusive mount to show off to other players but a jewel that would start a truly epic quest chain. It opened an entirely new aspect to the game’s main conflict. A lot of the others were participating for the loot and the experience but Sabrina loved the world and the different plots she saw unveiled as she played. It was like the choose your own story books she read as a child but she actually got to interact with the story.
“Eyes on the prize, Sabrina. Keep your eyes on the prize.”
Matthias gave the order for everyone to get into place as the dragons descended on the keep. She fell into the rhythm of the fight, dividing her time between healing her teammates and casting damage over time spells on the dragons. The fireballs fell like rain hitting the group hard. Her stronger healing spells kept them alive but also drew the attention of numerous dragons. Grudgingly she admitted that the stupid mage was serving a purpose as each time he shot off one of his higher level spells the dragons would shift their attention to him. Just like Matthias had planned.
As the encounter progressed the guild took down dragon after dragon until the final boss revealed itself. A huge four headed dragon loomed over the keep. Matthias gave the order to man the tower cannons. Then things went horribly wrong. Their group wasn’t assigned to the cannon. They were supposed to protect the group manning them from the shadows of the dragon that came to life and tried to pick people up to drop them into the deep ravine outside of the keep. Everything was going smoothly until the boss launched a huge ball of pulsing purple energy that took out the entire group around the left tower.
“Someone get on that cannon! We need all of them to down the boss!”
Matthias shouted out the order quickly following the blast. Their group was closest to the tower and she was closer than anyone else. Right before she reached the last step up the tower she saw Shortios use his teleport ability to get past her and onto the cannon.
“Hey, I got it! We don’t need you taking a nap during the last part of the fight!”
“Stick to healing the group, bandaid. Leave the damage to the DPS.”
“The hell did you just say to me?!”
“I said you should stick to your part and let me do mine!”
“How about I do my part and part your ass cheeks with my boot?!”
“Bring it sparkles! Unless your elven highness is too delicate?”
“That’s it! I’m punting your gnome ass back to the shit hole you crawled out of!”
“The hell are you guys doing?!”
Whatever else Matthias was going to say was drowned out by the roar of the four dragon heads as they sent purple energy balls at the towers. Having been so distracted with each other they hadn’t seen the heads powering up their attack. It was too late to get out of the tower before it hit or to power up a shield spell to save themselves. Their spirits appeared at the graveyard surprisingly fast.
“Get your asses back here NOW!”
The entire race back they could hear Matthias shouting out orders. The other groups trying to make it over to the now twice decimated left tower cannon. The dragon shadows butchered them, players picked off one after another. Their group had escaped the blast but were being overrun without their biggest damage dealer and their healer. They couldn’t keep the dragon shadows in check because it took too long for the few survivors to down them. Climbing the final hill they saw….ashes. Deadly Nightfall was over and they had failed. Winter’s Breath Keep was rubble.
Running the battle over in her head did nothing for her temper. All of it could have easily been avoided if the damn mage had let her man the cannon . And why did he do it? Because he had to be the one topping the damage charts. Gritting her teeth she started counting, trying to regain her composure. Another monster repair bill and the almost heartbreaking loss of a rare quest item all because of the narcoleptic mage and his damned ego.
“Focus and calm down. You need to have a level head.”
Like so much that had happened that night luck did not favor her. Her temper was far from extinguished when Aldric finally got on.
“Sorry for keeping you guys waiting so long.”
“Not a problem. Probably a good idea to give everyone time to cool off. Let’s get this guild meeting under way.”