“Constables,” spoke Rock Rackus with awkward solemnity, appearing to them in a darkened forest. “Is that an asteroid I do spy?”
Through a gap in the canopy, the group witnessed a white conflagration barreling through the sky, tumbling end over end as it streaked past. The air roared with its passage, and light flashed as it landed in some far-off spot. A heartbeat later, the ground lept, and only then could the ear-shattering explosion be heard.
“Son of a bitch!” Rock shouted, abandoning all attempts at civility. “There’s more of ’em! Follow me!” The docker took off, leading the party and a mass of other hazy-outlined people in a mad dash through the woods. Every few seconds, another ‘asteroid’ fell to land in the forest nearby, often opening a bizarre rift that revealed a thick shell of crystal just below the natural soil. One of these rifts opened directly in front of their path, and white-hot fire shone deep inside the jagged scar in the land.
“We’re almost there; get to the ship!” Rock shouted, but as he and the party made ready to jump the chasm, a handful of gold-armored fiends appeared. The darling of Flint called them out as ‘The Golden Legion,’ which was a name the party had encountered twice before: once from Xambria Meredith, who had herself discovered that The Ancients had encountered this warlike force, led by an individual called Egal the Shimmering, who was listed in an old Clergy text of various evils and heresies. She theorized that the ‘Golden Legion’ might have been the source of the Ancients’ plentiful gold, which would explain their apparent inability to smith other metals. The devil Belcamp (encountered and slain by the party in the Vault of Heresies) also claimed to be part of this Golden Legion.
Whatever their nature, most of them resembled ordinary humanoids, just armored by a thorough wrapping of spiked golden chains that dug into their flesh, and wielding golden shields and lances. Their leader, however, was a true fiend: ogre-sized and four-armed, he attacked with crablike pincer limbs, while his more humanoid hands cast fiery spells. Above all their heads, fiery crescents floated, like broken halos.
Five white-flamed torches awaited the party on the ship Rock urged them toward, and only a token effort was spent fighting the Legionnaires, though the party was keen to note that the golden chains wrapped around them didn’t seem to deter them from using teleportation magic to cross the chasm. With the torches in hand, Rock stood at the ship’s helm and ordered his crew to cast off—and it was at that point that the party realized there was no water below them at all, just an endless sea of darkness and stars.