When a plan goes bad you go back to the beginning. The Dragon Friends are going back to where it all began, Daggerford on the Sword Coast in a brand new adventure for 2019! This episode features live accompaniment by Tom Cardy.
The Friends have returned to Daggerford (or rather a muddy field just outside Daggerford), with Bobby Pancakes resurrected by the goddess Mystra at the cost of the imprisonment of Freezo in Dweomerheart. They decide to head back to the Dragonback Tavern, where Grimm Saltback welcomes them back and tells them that a package has arrived for them from Janos Meer, containing a note and a coin bearing the seal of the city. The note tells them to pay a visit to "the man in the castle on the hill". After collecting hot drinks from the bar (with Bobby Pancakes having his served in a pelican, due to confusion with the Flintstones), the Friends head into Daggerford Castle.
The guards seem surprisingly impressed when they show them the coin that come in the note. The friends are taken through to the throne room, where a rude nobleman (Simongreiner Lecroix) initially waves them away, but also changes his tune rapidly when shown the coin. He explains that he is the caretaker Duke of Daggerford, and takes them to an office where he begins to look through the letters, while asking them if they like what he's done with the place; he finally pulls out one letter in particular and reads it, which declares the holder of the coin to be the new Duke of Daggerford. Philge immediately demands her "Duke hat", and Lecroix gives her his hat (even though it was actually just his own hat). She also proposes that any member of the Dragon Friends will be allowed to rock-paper-scissors her for the title of Duke any time they need it, which is taken by Lecroix as an intent to rule as a triumvirate.
The Friends also see a confused-looking figure, looking like a child from a noble family, and ask them to approach. This is revealed to be Michael Hing's new character - which he has been left alone to build using D&D Beyond, meaning he has created Lionshield Banknote, an Aasimar Artificer carrying an Antimatter Rifle. Lecroix explains that Lionshield lives in the castle on a "gap year" from his artificing studies at the University. Lecroix explains that there are a line of petitioners waiting to speak with the Duke. Philge and the Friends recieve them in the Throne Room.
After sending away a few petitioning peasants, a nervous man complains that a wedding in Rivershine Hall has been going on for 3 days, and the noise is driving him mad; but then an angry Father Jebadiah bursts through the door, complaining that the sanitarium is now full to bursting and running out of resources (while Lionshield suggests that he could take away some of the inmates to be used for experimentation). The Friends decide to first investigate a farmer who complained of his cabbages being stolen, but then to visit the wedding at Rivershine Hall. But when they arrive, they find the bride, groom, and guests all frozen in place, swaying to a single infinitely long note from the fiddle player who is also apparently frozen in the moment of playing it.
Themes, tropes and running jokes
- "Uh, well, we met God and she killed Freezo and there were some space crocodiles." ".... It was a 60,000 word adventure." -- Philge's summary of what happened since Bobby's death
- "Dave, first of all, you told me that the start of this show would take 10 to 15 minutes." "I apologize for that. I had no way of knowing that they would adopt a pelican." "This really feels like a taste of my own medicine and I do not like it."
- "Hammer, stone of Good Luck, Necklace of Fireballs, Ball bearings - bag of 1000, Antimatter Rifle!?... and then the sixth one is 'a shovel'."
- "I've been waiting for half an hour!" "I died in space. Next." -- Bobby Pancakes recieves a petitioner