A sheet of lightning hurtled toward the dragon followed by another as the two wizards attempted to take the dragon down.
Having little time to concern herself with dodging the lightning, Pheurazath, for Zhay's sake, bears the brunt of the spell, and in fact turns the pain of it to her advantage, during her bite into the Draegloth, the pain making her clamp down all the harder. By then however, she had already abandoned flight, her wings well out of use for the time being. Further spells, after her retreat around the opposite side of the natural pillar, while ascending toward the top, found only stone to ineffectively blast against, line-of-sight obscured.
However, when a-yet-unfamiliar-roar echoed throughout the cavern, followed by Veraka's name being shouted, he opened his eyes to see his aasimar mentor hurtling towards the high priestess, completely oblivious to the now collapsing ceiling that Kalkyril had triggered.
"Noo!" he cried out, but to no avail.
At the moment of this cry, and the cry of an unfamiliar voice, Pheurazath's attention snapped downward too, to the horror of watching Veraka dive in, and then start back out of the collapse. Paralyzed by the horror and indecision of what to do, how to protect both Zhay AND Veraka, she could only watch and pray, begging Io, and much to her surprise then, every goodly Dragon God, great and minor, even Bahamut whom seldom crossed her mind, for the Aasimar's safety. What came next, drew open her eyes wider yet...
Turning back, the priestess grinned at the sight she saw, eyes glowing as her prey ran in. With a snarl, she threw her hand out, the snakes curling around Veraka's feet the bring him down. Walking over to him, she raised her whip high and brought it down hard, seconds before both of them were buried under clay, the priestess' body smashed before the snakes could do any real damage, their enchantment fading as their owner died.
The fey'ri looked on at her aasimar with hope; then a thunderous crash echoed from in front of her, accompanied by a huge dust cloud. Neriah raised her arms to shield her eyes from the debris.
"Veraka!!!" she screamed out in despair, her voice carrying into the thunderous clamor of the falling ceiling.
In these moments, how wide the ever slender opening of Pheurazath's eyelids spread, first came denial, wishing to disbelieve all that had just unfolded in a matter of mere seconds, then a rage, seething, borderline maniacal burned through her, calculating options, looking for a way to put this right, she found T'risstree and Maryne fast departing the cavern, and decided then and there. Executing a backward leap from the column, Pheurazath used her other
racial shape change, taking serpentine form, and coiling herself upon Zhay, braced herself for a harsh landing, using her body to cushion him, and come to a rolling-sliding position in the path of the clerics, halting herself then, with wings, now bruised, partly torn, and one partially burnt, presenting Zhay, carefully released from the coils, bidding them, "Get him out of here."
She was not about to stay long, not about to give anyone explanations, long enough to beg questions, not anymore chance than had been afforded to deduce the connection. No sooner than Zhay is given over to the more than capable hands that might heal him of two priestesses, than she is off again, slithering first, and coming up to a run reverting to dragon shape on the move, up beside Neriah, and keeping her voice low, "Get Aurora out of here, Io as my witness he will live yet, or I will share his grave, now GO!"
As for Charir, sensing the rage, and intentions of his Mistress, he'd made for higher altitudes early on, and when the dust had settled, seeing these new events, received and promptly carried out new orders, flitting to and alighting on Lothir's shoulder, using his racial telepathy to convey an image of him leaving the camp's vicinity swiftly, rather than attempt conveying projected words to that effect.
While Charir handled his new task, Pheurazath took up the same spell that had brought the roof down again, this time focusing the center of it upon the clay covering Veraka, though it would surely spread as wide as the first casting, turning much of the floor around them to clay, yet at a depth too minor to make a difference to footing or the condition of the camp. However, for the clay that had already fallen, it just as suddenly becomes a thick, sticking mud, from which Veraka is pulled up from, and now Pheurazath has a new passenger she prays will survive. Also musing how much praying she is doing this day, and wondering if she might have been better served to have been a cleric.
Just as well, drawing on her last two spells of that corresponding spell level for the day, places Invisibility
on Veraka first, and then herself. Now is time to retreat from this place, and hope Lothir followed her instructions, as she moves to locate T'risstree and Maryne again, to bring the fallen Aasimar to them as well.
No plan laid yet for whether she would stay to help, or leave, perhaps toward the city to devise a clever cover-story for her other identity, or perhaps back to the cavern, if enough remained standing, to have a light snack, just to make up for all the protein her body would need to heal and recover lost blood. For now, all that matters for her, is the survival of all. However, one plan that was easy to decide, once Veraka is healed and well again, he along with Lothir were due to be severely scolded for their impatience and recklessness. In retrospect, these two weaknesses ruined her negotiations, as well any chance of cleanly caving in the whole cavern without any casualties, other than Lolthites.
Of course she couldn't have known if her ruse would have worked at all, but now she'd never know, and worried over helping with the injured, or retreating to the city in hopes of avoiding, having to figure out how to maintain her public facade. If she must confide truth in these companions, would they respect her wishes to keep her secret from public perceptions? Would they attempt to exploit the secret, and force her into a position likely to drive her into hiring an assassin? Then of course another question troubled her mind, 'Why in the Nine Hells, did she care about these surfacers and Drow, so much that the matter troubled her so?'
[OOC: My internet availability will be greatly limited for next few months or so, hope you can all bear with me. Also, if this post is perhaps too much in some areas, let me know and tomorrow, perhaps Monday I will have some changes made, otherwise, enjoy. And yes, many welcomes to our newest arrival, I do hope you enjoy the RP.]