He laid there for a moment just staring at the sky, then asked a question in its general direction. "I don't suppose we know where we are, do we?"
"I thought you would have called your horse again, Chiron." Tenacity said. She glanced at him to make sure that he really was fine and not covering anything serious with bravado.
She scanned the horizon, not recognizing any of the terrain. "We need to find somewhere safe while we get our bearings, and with a volcano erupting nearby, this probably isn't it."
"It will probably take us weeks or even months to get home from here, so we should definitely track down horses for the rest of you. We'll need to take stock so we know our supply situation, too." She looked around at her comrades again and then the surrounding land while fingering the hilt of her sword. They had been flung to a strange land and needed answers, but survival had to be one step at a time. Once the immediate needs were taken care of, they could start to worry about just how they were going to return.
Posted on 2010-06-17 at 10:44:44.
Edited on 2010-06-17 at 10:46:34 by Celediel
As Tenacity scanned the horizon, she saw nothing that was familiar. It was too warm here to be northern Faerun, and they had just come from the extreme south of the continent. Maybe they teleported to one of the unseen southern islands. Maybe they are now in a totally different world, altogether.
They stood before a massive grassy plain. At least for fifteen miles of travel, they would be able to see danger coming, though, danger could also see them coming. Tenacity was able, due to the clear skies and clean air, to make out the outlines and colors of what loomed on the horizon. To the northeast she can see a densly wooded forest. The forest's cheek to cheek next door neighbor to the south is an imposing mountain range. Strangely enough, a black, unnatural cloud, emitting lightning but no thunder, hovers omniously over the peaks of the range.
"Would that I could summon Prajna again. Sadly, I only have the ability to call her from her other-worldy home once on any given day, and I'd called and dismissed her just before stepping through the portal to where ever here is."
Chiron rolled onto his side and began pulling himself to his feet, waving Seluumiel away as she tried to tend to him. "I thank you for your efforts, but I've suffered no more than minor cuts and scrapes. This bloody nose is by far the most grave of my injuries." The paladin wiped his nose with his forearm, showing that the blood flow was already slowing. "I just hit the cliff face sooner than I'd have liked. Which is to say: at all. We should both save our healing magics for potentially more dire wounds and use more conventional means for the trivial injuries."
Now standing, Chiron pinched his nostril closed and looked to the ominous cloud in the distance, then to the forest. "Trees or rain-clouds first?"
Seluumiel let the paladin stand and move away from her. It was his decision to accept healing or not and Chiron was probably right. They knew nothing of where they were and only healing severe wounds magically would certainly be prudent.
The moon elf stood and joined Chiron and Tenacity. A deep forest and a great mountain were visible in the distant horizon and Seluumiel shivered at the sight of the ominous cloud and its soundless lightning.
"Trees or rain clouds?" Seluumiel repeated the paladin's question. "I think it would be best we begin with the forest, we're more likely to find a safe place to camp there than underneath that cloud."
"I agree that venturing up those mountains might not be the best goal. We should trade the advantages of seeing against the disadvantage of being seen and travel along the edge of the forest as far as we can. We certainly won't get lost that way, either," Tenacity said. At this point, she was mostly musing out loud. "Either we find a path through the woods, or we travel at the foot of the mountains and plunge through. I don't like the looks of those clouds."
She was wary about this new area. There was a bridge that had survived until very recently, so there was some manner of civilization in the region, but there was no way of determining how active or benevolent any of that activity might be.
The scent of the air was pleasant enough, so maybe it wouldn't be all bad.
"Perhaps now would be a good time to finish looking over the contents of this chest," Chiron suggested, "before we start the trek for the forest."
He opened the lid and pulled out each remaining item, setting them all, in turn, in an ordered row. "Okay, we've got here a dagger, a light crossbow, with exceptional craftsmanship, and a quarterstaff. There's a ring, a pair of gloves, and a set of bracers. There was an amulet here before all that running and jumping and mountain exploding..." Chiron ran his fingers through the grass for a moment, making sure he hadn't dropped it while retrieving one of the other items, before he remembered where it had gone. "Oh, that's right. Tenacity, you're already wearing the amulet, right? Good. Thought for a moment it'd been lost."
Returning to the chest, the paladin pulled out the last of its contents, six potion, and set them aside. "Other than believing the potions should be split up between you all, I have no preference about this gear. That amulet is really the only one of the lot that I think I might use, but I believe it would be of more use to you, Tenacity."
Posted on 2010-07-10 at 20:51:20.
Edited on 2010-07-22 at 00:34:13 by Deucalion
Xavier: "Well, hell! I had my eye on the ring! Oh, well, you are probably right, Chiron. The ring and amulet suit Tenacity well."
Xavier reaches out and picks up the gloves and bracers.
"Sis, I know these are gloves, but is there anything special about them?"
Camille: "Brother, if you look closely at the leather you can see magic runes and pictographs of a feline creature stamped into the leather. These gloves should help you in your acrobatic efforts."
Xavier hands her the bracers. "These are for you, Sis, and I don't want to hear any argument about it either. I know you are not crazy about any kind of armor, but you need some sort of protection."
Putting a hand on her shoulder and giving her a look of concern Xavier says,"Go on, Camille, put 'em on."
Reluctantly, Camille dons the bracers. Then turns to her brother to offer up at least a little fuss,"Xavier, you really do tend to worry about me too much. I've gotten this far on my magic, and I don't feel I really need this."
"Camille", Xavier says, slightly exasperated,"Please just wear them, for my peace of mind. Besides you might even get used to them, maybe even like them later on."
Seluumiel looked over the contents of the chest and found she had no use for any of the old guardian's possessions. Already she wore a ring and an amulet, and although she could wield a staff the sword at her hip would prove far more useful.
"I too have no preference about any of this gear," looking up from the chest she continued. "You should all divide it amongst yourselves as you see fit. As for the potions, they appear to be healing potions of some kind. I already have the power to call on Sehanine for healing and I think it best that those of you who cannot work healing magics hold onto the potions. "
The silver haired priestess glided away from the chest to stand at the edge of where the group stood. Peering into the distance Seluumiel studied the landscape, they were far beyond any familiar place. 'Destroy any portals you find in the next world.' The words of the ancient elf echoed over and over in her mind, 'in the next world.' A quiet sigh left the moon elf's lips, they did not even know if they stood on Toril or some other realm, they were truly lost.
A few feet from her Xavier and Camille argued over wearing armor and their familial interchange drew her attention away from the forest. It pained her at times to watch the two, not that she begrudged their reunion but it reminded her too much of her own loss. There would be no reunion for she and her twin sister, Siliveliel was dead. The memory of that loss was still raw and it would pain her for the rest of her living days. Still death was a mystery ruled by the goddess she served and that knowledge did bring her some peace. Siliveliel rested in Sehanine's embrace and whenever she reached for her goddess some part of her sister would be there. A soft smile graced her lips as she continued to watch the pale skinned siblings and sheoffered a prayer to the Seldarine that the two would not know the pain she now lived with.
It seemed to her that the others were trying their best not to seem greedy, but as Tenacity had no magical means of healing, such things were not beneath her. "I'll take a handful of the potions, then, if you insist," she said, and put three into her pack. "This ring and the amulet would seem to benefit defense the same amount but in different ways, yes? I don't have similar equipment, either, so it doesn't really matter which one I have and which goes to you." She handed Chiron the amulet and accepted the ring, which she admired briefly on her right hand, opposite the ring of sustenance.
"Xavier and Camille, you should definitely have a potion each, to be sure. If these weapons aren't going to use, we'll have to sell them later to fund things we do want. A staff of this fine craftsmanship should see some demand."
The majority of the items accounted for, she mounted Diligence for a better vantage while the group made its way to the edge of the forest. She sheathed her sword and removed the lance from its straps on the side of the saddle, letting the Valence pennant stream in the breeze above. If anything hostile appeared, Tenacity was ready.
The new amulet hung loosely around the paladin's neck, just above the tied-hands symbol of Ilmater. With most of the weight of the chest now distributed amongst his traveling companions, Chiron hoisted the now nearly empty container onto his shoulder. The steel shield that had been slung over his back during the frantic run down the mountain was now strapped to his left arm and swinging slightly at his side as he walked along beside Diligence.
"I'm not familiar with navigating the wilds. I've spent most of my time in or very near cities. Sadly, if it comes to it, I must confess I'll be of no use if we have to forage for food or that sort of thing. Do any of you have any practice or training with that sort of thing?"
"Chiron, food won't be a problem for quite a while, my good man!" Xavier reaches into his pack and pulls out a heaping handful of trail bars.
"Besides, I thought you paladin types could produce food from nothing, or is that just clerics. If its just clerics, next city we come to, I suggest we hire one. Otherwise, I do believe we have enough food to last until we make it to a city."
He makes a 'come on, let's go' type motion to his sister and begins walking in the direction of the forest. Then he looks back.....
"Well, if we are not camping now, I suggest we get moving. That forest looks a long ways off."
Seeing no danger, the group began to make their way across the plains. For at least the first 10 miles they took in the sights and new sounds that befuddled their ears. Natural creatures of this realm, or worse? Strange bird-like creatures soared through the air with long tails trailing behind them seemed to take no notice of the group as they traveled.
Strangly enough, as the sun began to set, it seemed to be getting hotter. The air turned from a humid balmy climate to a dry summer hot temprature. Sweat really begins to first bead up then pour from their bodies as they travel.
Being as there was no real trail the group had to walk through the tall grasses, picking up unusual spear-like burs as they went. These burs cut into any exposed skin as the natural oils present on the spear tips are absorbed into natural fabrics. As the oils collect and the sweat dilutes, an itchy irritation is caused. The party, almost half way to the forest may be wondering which is worse, the travel or being attacked by something.
The bird like creatures may have actually took notice, after all. As the sun finally set, and a new light source seemed to be on the rise from the opposite end of the land, the bird-like creatures take up a circular flight path directly over the party just as they make their way to the mouth of the heavily canopied forest. Will they make camp outside or within the dark forest? Which will prove more dangerous?
Posted on 2010-08-14 at 00:16:01.
Edited on 2010-08-14 at 00:25:31 by Tiamat5774
The stinging of the plant burs had, at first, been an annoyance, but after another hour of that constant irritant, Chiron fond a way to view the situation through the filter of his religious tenets. Every bur he picked up by his passage is one fewer that a subsequent traveler would be plagued by. Even better, he might be able to reduce the suffering of his companions.
"We should walk single-file here. There is no point in all of us picking up these accursed stinging burs. I will lead, and any that I pick up will be one less for any of you to be troubled with." The paladin had made up his mind and was already moving to the front of the group. He could imagine protests forthcoming from Tenacity or Seluumiel, so he quelled their arguments before they could be made.
"The first and highest call of any Ilmatari is to lessen suffering in the world." Chiron explained. "The Order I had been a part of back home, The Companions of the Noble Heart, did this by finding the evil in the world that was spreading pain and suffering and putting an end to it. The Order of the Golden Cup, to whom I had applied before hearing the call from Leaphaven, is dedicated to healing and protecting the sick, innocent and weak. There is no evil here to smite, and I lack the fine magics needed to ease the irritation of plant's oils, so this is what I will do."
The day's trek was finally ended and the sun was setting. Chiron looked forward to a cool evening where he could dry off the constant sheen of sweat from the day. His hopes lessened greatly when he saw what appeared to be a second sun rising in the east. "I fear we may be farther from home than any of us may have guessed. Perhaps we should set up camp just inside the forest where the canopy can at least give us some shade."
The paladin was not at all looking forward to beginning travel again without having cool night's rest first, and if that was another sun, it wasn't going to cool anytime soon.
Posted on 2010-08-22 at 01:01:24.
Edited on 2010-08-22 at 01:41:46 by Deucalion
"Your reasoning is sound, Chiron. I'll bring up the rear," Tenacity said. She hoped that remaining mounted would lend her enough of a height advantage to see far enough over the grass. "If anyone would like to ride up here with me, the grass isn't so bad. Every set of eyes we have high up will prevent any surprises, too."
Most of her errant duties had taken her through areas that were more heavily traveled than this, and she certainly hadn't encountered foliage that seemed outright hostile.
"What other wildlife do you suppose tolerates this environment? All I see are those birds..." She was just making idle chatter at this point, trying to pass the time and keep everyone's attention on analyzing their surroundings, instead of focusing on how uncomfortable the little details were.
Dismounting from Diligence once the group had reached the edge of the forest, she scanned the canopy for anything that might fall or even jump. "Let's get what rest we can now. I'm not sure when it will ever cool off at this rate. I'll scout a perimeter while you all eat, then I'll take first watch. If those birds are scavengers, we'll make sure they don't think we're an easy target. If they're more aggressive than that, well, only take off what armor you need to get comfortable in case we get interrupted."
Just as it seemed the group was going to get some much needed rest from the heat of day, another bright light source was on its way up on the far opposite side of the new land. As the sky began to dim to almost twilight, instead of star dotting the horizon, there were bright streaks like still lightning, seeming as if the sky were cracked and ready to break. Dimmer than a star but brighter than any moon the group had ever seen, what seems like a large brilliant point of energy was rising, and the way all the streaks seemed to originate from it, it appeared that this point of radiant energy fed the streaks in the sky and keeping them illuminated.
The bird like creatures seemed to be flying lower and lower until.....
Lightning seared from the creature's tail and struck Tenacity's horse Diligence. The horse reared and crow hopped at the same time jostling Tenacity, who got a small jolt from just the closeness to the electrical energy.
After the attack the flying monstrosity fly high once more, giving a shrill shriek as though to signal that the hunt has begun and the time to attack is nigh.
These four bird like creatures bear an uncanny resemblance to a hawk from the group's home world, with the exception of the long sinuous and scaly tail. One couldn't tell if it was flying upside down or right side up for the one that attacked had four eyes, two above and two below the beak, and four wings, which may explain why it demonstrated excellent aerial skill, beyond that of any bird any of them had encountered before.
((DM Says: All players need to make initiative rolls and post them in Q&A. I will roll for any MIA chars. This battle will go much smoother if we all communicate with each other via the Q&A Thread and THEN post.
Also Diligence takes 6 damage from the electric ray and Tenacity take 3 proximity damage. Tenacity must also make a ride check DC15. If succeeded she stays in control of the horse and remains mounted. If failed she loses control of the horse and she can't act that round and must roll the same check again next round at DC16, and so on, until she gains control of the horse.
However, if any of the ride saves are failed by 5 or more she must make a balance save of the same DC (if the ride DC is 15 and you rolled a 10, you would then make a balance check of DC 15). If the balance check fails, Tenacity falls prone off her horse.))
Posted on 2010-08-25 at 03:03:42.
Edited on 2010-08-25 at 03:05:12 by Tiamat5774