Our story begins when a duo of mages, Evero Ilim and Elor Rookthelian, and their companions set out across the desert wastes to the tent city of Yain Karai, seeking treasure and fortune. Along the way they encounter a merchant under attack by brigands. After saving the merchant, known as Al Rokheem, he rewards the adventurers and leads them to Yain Karai, where he soon after offers the group a job- to travel to the Valley of Monsters and capture a giant centipede for use in the capital city’s gladiator games.
The duo accepts (but not before negotiating a more appealing offer) and hold a series of interviews to find suitable companions for the task. Here they add to their retinue several fellow adventurers: free-spirited Gnome bard Binkbick Stormwaddle, noble holy avenger Aramil(?) the Eladrin, the mysterious and roguish Drow ranger Draela, world-weary human knight Glathale, and devout Half-elf cleric Valdor Erhgath.
The group then braved the harsh trials of the Valley of Monsters and after a hard-fought battle with the giant centipede, returned with its (still living) head. They then traveled to the capital city of Laddenstradda. Here, Al Rokheem instructed the group on how to grow and nurture their new pet and they readied it for combat in Shalo Saana, an ancient arena built in the remnants of the old city. After teaching their pet a host of combat tricks and outfitting it with battle gear, it was more than prepared to win its first fight. However, it was not yet fully grown and the group was forced to participate in a qualifying fight on behalf of their pet.
In their fight, the group was matched up against a large hydra and it nearly destroyed them. After using every possible tactic, the group continued to struggle against the ferocious creature, which only grew more dangerous as its many heads were severed. Glathale, as if fated, pressed on and made one final attempt to finish the fight. His last blow caused enough damage to kill the hydra but he was still torn apart in the death throes of its many mouths. The party victorious, they entombed their fallen ally’s remains in the halls of the arena and soon made plans to resurrect him.
Above: Glathale prepares to be shredded