Hello all. This story is just one of many potential stories I could tell from a campaign i’ve been playing in for about two years run by a DM who has also been my best friend for over a decade. I tell this story not to embarass him as a Dungeon Master, but rather to simply share a hilarious story from the process that occurred from a mistake he unknowingly made that we both enjoyed immensely afterwards. In order to best understand this story, I feel I must first provide some background as to the story being told.
In the original world the DM had created, the party was an ensemble of characters called the Queensmen, who were recruited by the Kingdom of Valivar to sail around the world of Ahenyon on various missions to assemble an international alliance against the dark forces of the Hazen Islands. Because the campaign was and still is going on with many of our characters recieving detailed story arcs and development, every now and then a player would retire their character when they felt that their contributions to the main campaign were over in order to inject some new blood and character dynamics to the party. However, because the DM wanted all our player characters present for the finale yet to come, our retired characters could live on in side stories and solo adventures also built by the DM alongside our main campaign. It is from one of these solo adventures that this story comes from.
My character is named Wildheart Freeborn, a wood elf druid who hails from a mysterious land lost to time named Tempus Isle. Created by the gods as something of a last bastion for the early prehistoric life that were almost wiped out when the BBEG of the campaign, the demon lord Rindik, was last defeated by the gods millenia ago, Tempus Isle was basically the Jurassic Park of the campaign where dinosaurs and other powerful monsters and magic could be found. To keep an incredibly long and complex backstory brief, Wildheart was kidnapped and taken from the island by the villains of the campaign and taken to Valivar where he was subsequently rescued by and joined the soon to be Queensmen. He elected to aid them in their missions and travels while simultaneously trying to find a way home back to Tempus and to his adopted father and ruler of the island, the Bronze Dragon Honorwing. Eventually succeeding and saving the island from an invasion by demons and other dark forces led by the descendant of an ancient enemy of Tempus, Wildheart was forced to destroy the time barrier that kept the island hidden from the rest of the world. It was at this point he seperated from the Queensmen and stayed on Tempus to protect it and all life on it from a world they knew virtually nothing about.
Being named the new Lord Protector of Tempus Isle after his dragon father died in the conflicts, Wildheart carried on and dealt with many threats including high-elf trespassers, a lesser god of decay and death, and several other natural disasters. His biggest challenge came however when a new threat, a shape-shifting Rakshasa calling himself The Shaa, infiltrated Tempus on a mission for the BBEG in exchange for virtual immortality. We would find out later that The Shaa was essentially a BBEG in his own right having been plaguing Ahenyon for millenia and being directly responsible for events that led to the creation of several future Queensmen. After giving my character the run around several times causing chaos and taking many lives on his evil pursuits, the almost literal game of cat and mouse finally came to a head when Wildheart finally caught him trying to masquerade as one of his trusted confidants and wound up facing off with him one on one in the throne room of his palace high above the jungle canopy in a gigantic redwood tree.
Originally it was the DM’s plan to force Wildheart into making a costly deal with The Shaa in order to protect his home making it look like I had no chance to defeat him as I was only level 11 at the time and by myself. Wildheart eventually made an agreement with him, but cleverly left out that The Shaa was allowed to leave the island in peace and immediately attacked him once negotiations were over. It was a brutal confrontation as Wildheart in the form of an Allosaurus and The Shaa traded vicious tooth and claw attacks with each other. Despite this the only one seemingly getting hurt was Wildheart as the Shaa showed no real evidence of injury despite what I was putting him through…the first signs of the miscalculation the DM made.
Eventually triggering one of many new unique powers I had recieved on my ascension to the throne, Wildheart shapeshifted into a Young Adult Bronze Dragon to continue the fight and found some success using his breath attacks and doing what appeared to be actual damage. As The Shaa rolled out some new tricks including summoning a Beholder to the fight as I likewise recieved some backup in the form of several druids and warriors of my people who came to help, it seemed like the fight would never end. It was then that everything went wrong…for the DM.
At first it looked like the Shaa had gained the upper hand on Wildheart as he managed to mind control Wildheart’s sister Iennma as she too joined the fight in her own dragon form. The two of them battered me pretty badly and I was at the verge of being forced back into my elven form and effectively dead. Getting scared, I asked the DM if The Shaa looked mortally wounded as by this point I has easily done a couple hundred points of damage combined to him at least. He informed me that while my lightning breath had damaged him, he seemed to be relatively unharmed otherwise. Out of curiousity, I asked the DM if he had been taking into account that all of my attacks were doing magic damage. Despite the fact that we were conducting this battle over text…I could practically hear my DM’s jaw hit the floor.
See, Wildheart was a Druid who had taken the Circle of the Moon path in order to facilitate his ability to transform into the dinosaurs and other mighty beasts that roamed Tempus. Circle of the Moon Druids gain an additional feature at 6th level called Primal Strike which dictates that all attacks in beast form count as magical for the purposes of overcoming resistance and immunity of physical damage…the exact thing the DM had bestowed onto The Shaa. After realizing his mistake, the DM had to take a break to do the math and crunch the numbers. Eventually upon resuming he told me that by this point in the fight I had actually done enough damage to defeat The Shaa several times over, and was in shock both that he had forgotten this trait and that one of his bosses again underestimated the party (a recurring but hilarious issue several of his villains had up to that point).
We eventually agreed that The Shaa was definitely bloodied and didn’t have much left in him…this was when the epic conclusion to the battle kicked in. By this point Wildheart was pinned in dragon form under the claw of his dragon sister with The Shaa standing on her back gloating over his assumed victory. Thankfully I had stalled just long enough to recharge my lightning breath and I told the DM I wanted to use it. He allowed it but required me to make a Dex check to properly aim the attack given my compromised position and aiming past Iennma to precisely shoot him off her back. I rolled fearing the worst…it was a natural 20. My breath attack precisely made it’s mark and with a near max damage roll dealing almost 100 points of damage with The Shaa also failing his Dex save to avoid the breath. The battle was over.
It was declared that my breath blasted The Shaa off my sister’s back ending his control over her. He sailed over the nearby balcony edge plummeting hundreds of feet to the ground below. I got out from under Iennma’s grip to fly after him and witnessed his incinerated body falling through a dimension door The Shaa conjured with the last ounce of his ability swearing vengeance the entire time. Wildheart had won and protected his island once more. While this was not the end of Wildheart’s solo adventures, it was definitely the most epic conclusion to one he’s had so far. To my shock I found out later in the campaign that The Shaa had survived this encounter as Rindik had given him one resurrection for not failing at every one of his missions. The current iteration of the Queensmen has just exposed him once again disguised as a prominent high elven official and next session I will have the pleasure of dispatching him once again with my other character, an insane Changeling jester named Ruze Caprice.
In summary, what could have been my greatest loss as a player in Dungeons and Dragons became one of my greatest victories…all because the DM didn’t read the fine print. I just want to clarify once again that I love my DM and none of these adventures would have been possible without him, BUT that doesn’t mean I can’t talk about a time when his miscalculations allowed me to win the day. Thanks for reading!