Frodrick raised an eyebrow. This kobold had taken crude torture and watched his companions die, yet he still wanted to continue with his mission. There was honor in all places, and Frodrick was bolstered by this kobold's words.
"What be this mission your on there? Since we are butchering mites down here, there would be no issue with knowing what you need too."
Mite Warren – Chamber of Torment
Inspired by the small warrior's determination, Zeran offered Mikmek the dagger that had once been so close to his heart--or at least gut. He accepted the dagger solemnly and slipped it into his belt--his only real piece of clothing.
"Sword will do. Much thanks." Mikmek nodded to Zeran.
Kyrie came forward with the vial of potion she carried on her. "Take this for your injuries." she said, her own wounds freshly touched up by Miguel's magic (+9dmg Kyrie 17/21). The kobold took the gift with a mixture of disbelief, suspicion, and gratitude. He sniffed the vial once before quaffing the potion (+3dmg Mikmek 4/4).
While his bumps and bruises were seared off by the burning energy of life, Mikmek listened to Frodrick's questions. "Mikmek sent by Chief Sootscale. Must get Sharptooth statue. Maybe save tribe from war."
Frodrick set his axe down and drew the bloodstained ivory statuette out. Upon seeing it, Mikmek's eyes lit up like a whelp on his hatchday--which it may as well have been given the gifts he'd received. The kobold jumped into the air with a cheer, shouting "Death to Tartuk!"
Like Poro, the moment he realized what he said out loud, he froze, horrified, looking about for any sign that his blasphemous words had been heard. He relaxed quickly, "Mikmek must take statue to Chief Sootscale. Will tallfolk help? Sootscale tribe offer many riches!"
Kyrie was glad that the kobold still lived. At least one was escaped from death. However, even after it drank the vial, was it completely okay? Kobold insides could be different than other peoples. Cold blooded, right? Kyrie paused. No point in worrying about it right now, and if the little guy was still in poor condition, he'd probably say so.
Though with all the happiness that the lil guy was emitting, she wouldn't have been surprised if it suppressed any poor condition effects that he might otherwise still be feeling. In any case, it was probably about time to get everyone out and into the sun. Too much stormy weather and being cramped under the tree probably wasn't going to be too good on people's outlooks. Best get out soon. But the somewhat-chasm in the previous room might've become slightly more unstable with the centipede's fall (sorry Mr. Centipede, but I could not allow you to hurt my friends. Even if we do look like bugs to you). Either way, there was only one major unknown left, which was 'what is up ahead?'
"I'll help make sure the way is clear. That one mite ran ahead, didn't it? May be another ambush or something." Kyrie noted, patting her shovel and putting it back in place over her shoulder before getting ready to climb, taking point at the front and waiting for light before continuing.
Posted on 2013-12-18 at 22:50:55.
Edited on 2013-12-18 at 23:04:14 by Reralae
I didn't think I should really bother you for actions too much for something like this.
Mite Warren – Chamber of Torment/Prank Workshop
Mikmek took to the idea of killing the rest of the mites eagerly. He ran to the base of the shaft and looked back, waiting for direction or guidance. Kyrie assumed position next to him, ready to climb once she could see the root-holds more than 5' above her head.
Miguel directed his lights to the base of the shaft with a thought. Kyrie immediately started to scramble up, wasting no time. The bard followed immediately behind her, moving his lights to the top with them.
Kyrie glimpsed behind her as she reached the top. There were three mites, including the one who fled, standing behind a tiny catapult of bones and branches, set on a workbench. One manned the contraption, releasing it at their first target. The paladin turned away as something small, sharp, and metal struck her head painfully and fell down the shaft. She thought she felt her hair bleeding (-1dmg Kyrie).
The two other mites took advantage of the moment to channel their ruinous energies. Perhaps it was the result of weathering so many repeated attacks on her mind, or maybe simply the stress of a long, hard conflict, but Kyrie's hands started to shake uncontrollably. An overrush of adrenaline in reaction to the onset of the faceless anxiety was making focusing difficult (Kyrie Shaken).
Not one to let a little vague terror worry her, Kyrie clambered onto the ledge at the top. Wasting no time Kyrie straight up cut down the mite on her right (-8dmg *crit* Uurch Dying). The other, meanwhile, seemed to be realizing that its contraption didn't have nearly the stopping force he'd hoped.
Before he had time to worry about that, though, Miguel appeared over the ledge behind Kyrie, drawing his sword in the same motion he cut down the catapult operator (-8dmg Dingetooth Dying).
Zeran and Krii scrambled up the shaft behind them. They drew their weapons as they came over the top, Zeran going for the mite with his rapier. He thrust, but the small mite ducked under the blow, continuing to show remarkable good sense in avoiding death.
Finally the mite got his legs under him and scrambled for the exit again, barely dodging another of Zeran's thrusts and avoiding Krii's sickle in a mad dash to get out of the room.
Kyrie started to give chase, but the natural upward slope of the exiting tunnel cut off Miguel's lights. Instead, Krii, closest to the door already, ran after it with his natural night vision.
The sorcerer quickly realized that the tunnel was the other direction from the initial fork that they'd entered on. He saw the mite at the peak just before it disappeared up the entry shaft of the warren proper.
Meanwhile in the small room filled with miniature workbenches covered in tiny tools, Frodrick finally managed to heave his girth to the top of the shaft, working so slowly thanks to the weight of his armour and the blood loss he'd suffered.
Zeran, glancing around for anything interesting in this last room, noticed a tally on the wall, written in the same crude undercommon as in the chief's war room. It said 'Days since last accident' with a number of tallies underneath, apparently restarted seven times, with the longest spree being no more than five days in a row.
As the party caught up with Krii, they knew the one mite had escaped, potentially to live another day, maybe warning its comrades in the field to stay away from the old sycamore from then on out. Mikmek was delighted to find that the bigfolk proved their worth yet again in dispatching the mites so quickly.
The party climbed the shaft out of the warren, having gotten what they came for and rooted out any infestation that had been left, with the possible exception of a single monstrous gremlin.
The first of the group to surface, however, was met with a small surprise. As they squeezed out of the narrow gap under the roots of the tree, they beheld first Jargon's inquisitive wuffling nose and second the skull-smashed-in corpse of the escapee mite, presumably run afoul of Jargon's hooves when they surprised each other when, looking for Frodrick she found an ugly blue mug.
Mite P: I wanted to surprise you.
(Took one or two liberties with the selection of actions, but I don't think I had anyone do anything they would definitely not have. Except for miss. Seriously, after Kyrie's double natural 19 on the crit confirm, Zeran and Krii rolled 4-5-5 between them.)
(Gotta go help shovel some snow now, if there are any blatant mistakes assume I didn't actually make them and you are, in fact, hallucinating.)
Surprisingly healed up pretty well with Long-term Care
Mite Warren; Hex E6
That morning seemed to go on for weeks, but the day was still very early. As the party returned to where the rest of the horses were tied they noticed that there was easily still enough hours left in the day to start travel back south to wherever this kobold tribe lived—and more pressingly, the nearest water deep enough to wash off the layers of dirt.
None too keen on spending another night in this field, regardless how good the future weather was supposed to be, the party set out again. Mikmek was given a spot in the wagon, eagerly watching the landscape from the driver's seat next to Zeran.
Using Mikmek's directions as a guide, the party stopped a fair distance upriver from the kobold caverns. It was later in the afternoon on a fair day and the dirt-caked party simply threw off their armour and waded into the river shallows, fully clothed. After much scrubbing and clawing at tangled hair and rinsing, the party was thoroughly soaked, but more or less clean.
With the sun going down and their energy already largely expended, the party decided to post a watch (a few yards further from the river than last time) and set up camp for the evening, with Kyrie working to tend to their wounds.
+1000XP per Person (18 mites, 1 giant tick, 3 giant centipedes, 1 giant whiptail centipede)
Hex F6 – Shrike River
The next day the party prepared to travel to the kobold caverns and return the kobold statue to the chieftan. Meanwhile Mikmek filled their ears with squawking, broken descriptions of how Tartuk, a strange purple kobold, came to their tribe three months before with his magic statue (he never mentioned the statue without a surreptitious glance toward where it lay, as if it might be angered) and told Chief Sootscale that the kobold tribe had been cursed.
According to the small warrior, Tartuk had been forcing the kobolds to sacrifice to the god of the statue, Old Sharptooth, and obey its every command (only audible to the shaman, naturally), lest the tribe fall victim to the curse. None of the kobolds like the strange shaman, but they feared him too much with the curse of the magic statue and the dire predictions of his talking raven to move against him.
Something doesn't add up here, and it's not the carrots
"Wait wait, let me get this straight." Kyrie frowned, a curious expression that wasn't commonly on her face, "Is it just me, or does this seem rather farfetched? I mean, yes, magic is real. But a curse on an entire village?" She rubbed the back of her head, "I mean, there were some strange stories going around back on the farm when talking to neighbors or community gatherings, but nothing like that. Worst case scenario, we had a drought and someone thought it was a result of something or other."
Kyrie blinked and realized she was rambling, "Point I'm trying to make is, the only one you've mentioned who brought it up is also the same person who had the statue, and who is also essentially a stranger. Has there been anything to prove that he might be telling the truth?"
She also considered the statue, "The part that really bugs me is the sacrifice part. A curse is wrong. Sacrifice is also wrong. Since when do two wrongs make right? Two lefts make you go backward, not right. Besides which..."
Kyrie picked up the statue and stared it down hard, "Someone that accepts sacrifice is not a nice person. By extension, it's only logical that an object that supposedly channels its commands has the same aura as that person."
After a moment Kyrie shook her head, "I get no feeling from this thing at all. And if it indeed channels commands, then that's a form of magic. Has anyone checked if this thing is magical?" She asked
Krii didn't say much over the next few hours the encounter with the whiptail and being so close to death had taken a lot out of him, he simply listen to what the others had to say and thought on the events to come with soon meeting the Kobold tribe and of there plight and this suppose deityesk statue and the prophetic kobold that had brought it, he knew little to nothing of other religions outside his own other then what he was told in his time with the gnomes or other people on his travels, but he did know that at times the gods of worship were not always kind. At the fire that night after there respective "bathes" when the topic turned again to the statue Krii spoke for the first time since the events in the warren.
" A curse is a curse wither it effects one or many depends on the strength of the one who "casts" it, if we are to believe any of this we are talking about a deity and not all of them are cuddly and soft like kittens and fickle creatures they can be. Those that commune with gods have often used there abilities to benefit themselves and the fear they can inspire can make the strongest bow before them, ritual sacrifice from my understanding has been used years for even the kindest gods sacrifice the wicked for good and vice versa."
Krii began to rant slightly about the virtues of good and evil and what really deems one to be either alignment or what gives anyone the right to define if an evil being is by definition evil or if they are simply born and raised in darkness as he slowly began to mumble before passing out while sitting up and continues to mumble at times in his sleep.
Why don'tcha just crush the poor thing's entire worldview while you're at it? XD
Hex F6 – Shrike River
Kyrie blinked and realized she was rambling, "Point I'm trying to make is, the only one you've mentioned who brought it up is also the same person who had the statue, and who is also essentially a stranger. Has there been anything to prove that he might be telling the truth?"
Mikmek's nodded, eyes wide. “Cursed kobolds turn yellow and die. Tartuk says when Sharptooth displeased, kobolds die. Must sacrifice bad kobolds. Strange, scary things happen—kobolds see things, hear things, bird say scary things, and no one want ask questions and be next sacrifice.”
”Has anyone checked if this thing is magical?"
Krii was too busy muttering things likely learned at his uncle's side in childhood to himself, so Miguel took the statuette. He turned away from the sorcerer so as not to get a false reading off his protections and murmered his magic.
After a moment he returned it. “Nothing but a bloody ugly lump of ivory. If there's a curse over the kobolds, this statue isn't part of it.”
The kobold listened to this exchange with growing dismay. “Not magic? Then how kobolds stop curse?” Mikmek started pacing frantically, muttering something in his own language, then stopped. “Sootscale know what to do. We must give to him. He decide.”
Krii's got a back up plan, just in case. You may begin interactions/negotiations
Kobold Caverns; Hex F6
Mikmek led the party purposefully down river to a hillock, standing isolated from the other hills not far from the river's edge. Before proceeding further, the small kobold insisted on keeping the statuette hidden until they were in Sootscale's presense. He also insisted on entering unarmed, to avoid alarming or provoking anybody.
Mikmek took the party to an outcropping where the weather had worn away the face of the hill to bedrock. Several large boulders stood at the base of the hill, obscuring but not completely hiding a narrow opening in the rock. As the party grew closer to the entrance, somebody spotted a ancient sign laying fallen against the rock, a few faded words still visible: “Oaktop Silver Mine.”
With a sharp yelp, a kobold guard leaped out from behind one of the large boulders by the entance. He looked surprised from Mikmek to the tallfolk to Mikmek, then the two began a rapid exchange of yapping sounds in their language. There was much gesturing and glancing back at the tallfolk, followed by a moment of intense, hushed whispering, before Mikmek invited the party to approach.
Just beside the entrance, resting on a small, flat rock, there was a cage of sticks and branches, and contained within a single, sobbing mite, whimpering and squinting its large eyes against the sunlight. The other kobold disappeared into the black opening in the hill and Mikmek bid the party follow him. (Those wishing to pause/comment on the mite may use the tag (Caged Mite))
Inside, Mikmek stopped the tallfolk while the other kobold disappeared into a small alcove just to the right, taking the key hanging around his neck. “Nakpik disarm traps. Wait moment.” The party noticed that, while the roof was lower than some of the members might have liked, the tunnel was much more spacious than in the mite warren, and with far better construction.
After just a second, Nakpik returned and Mikmek continued to lead further down the dimly lit tunnel, with Nakpik joining the party from behind. As they passed from the entrance Frodrick recognised at least one carefully disguised spot on the cavern floor obviously designed to collapse under pressure—and would have, if not for whatever finagling Nakpik had done before. Miguel himself noticed another such spot.
Further down, as the tunnel started to curve to the left it narrowed down, with two tunnel openings. Though the one of the left was slightly wider, even the kobolds could only walk single-file, while the tallfolk were forced to squeeze through the tight area. While crossing through the narrow straits, two spear-wielding kobolds appeared as if from nowhere, one in front and one behind.
Mikmek quickly and quietly filled them in with, again, several glances back at the party. Finally, after several seconds of chatter, the guards formed up in the front and back as if creating an honour-guard for the party.
The tunnel curved to the left some thirty feet before a passage opened on the left, with the main passage continuing on. The lead guard listened ahead by the main passage, then stopped Mikmek. She said something to him in Draconic, and pointed to the left passage.
“Must go through temple. Not risk noise,” Mikmek translated for the party's benefit.
The 'temple', if it could be called that, was a fair-sized room in the cave. The walls were covered in charcoal-and-blood depictions of a red and black reptilian devil with prominent teeth. In the middle of the room were two low stone tables, one of which was coverend in dried blood.
As they passed through, Nakpik stared guiltily at the bloodied table, but none of the kobolds dared even open their beaks in the profaned space. The opposite side of the room, though, opened into a larger room, well-lit by a couple small firepits.
The room was warm and the air thick with a reptilian smell mixed with smoke and burnt meat. The sudden warmth made the party realize the chill that had crept into their spines crossing through the temple.
The floor of the room was strewn with many beds of furs, with a larger pile of furs stacked in one side of the room, framed by dozens of sticks topped with ash-smeared bird and other small animal skulls. Atop the pile of furs sat a single kobold, while another half dozen kobolds sat around the cookfires in the room.
The kobold seated on the pile of furs, evidently Chief Sootscale, rested his head on his chin, obviously worried. The entrance of the tallfolk into their midst, led by Mikmek, drew every eye in the room. Sootscale leaped to his feet, mouth gaping open.
Mikmek ran for the base of the fur pile, squawking something. Sootscale said nothing as he listened to Mikmek's speech, only furrowing his brow with concentration and concern. After he had heard the full story, the kobold chieftan turned to the party, fixing them with an intense stare.
“Do you truly have it, then? You have brought it with you? Show me.” His Taldane was almost flawless, if slightly accented.
Kyrie went into her backpack and drew out the small statuette. Sootscale's eyes lit up with a mixture of apprehension and excitement. He reached out one clawed hand. “Give it to me. Give me the statue.”
Frodrick walked before the cheiftain, and gestured to Kyrie as Sootscale asked about the statue. He was hoping she would catch his drift and procure the said item from her pack. He then turned to Sootscale to talk.
"We be here not to give nothin just so ya know there Sootscale. We be here to trade. We found in the mite den that you have a ring that the mites had taken from some humans - we want to trade the statue for that ring. If my hunch is right, it belonged to an aquaintance of ours and it was stolen by human bandits."
(Pressuming he agrees with the trade.)
Frodrick nodded. "It is good to see some folks are willing to be civilized in these here wild parts. Now onto other business. We heard that there is a certain individual who has seemingly usurped your role. Also heard he is threatening all 'o you with some death curse if you dont serve a deity. We be willing to help you with this case, but again: we ain't in a giving mood - we will expect some compenation."
"If we take on this task, we want all you scaley folk to stop cause trouble for the humans that wander 'round here. A posting has been put out to stop your trouble one way or another. Since you lot seem like you have no problems trading I would preffer to go the more diplomatic route than the other. We do something for you, you do somehting for us. We agreed?"
Posted on 2013-12-24 at 06:04:32.
Edited on 2013-12-24 at 06:04:58 by Shades331
As Frodrick motions, Kyrie pulls the statue nonchalantly from her backpack, holding it so that it's in front of her, shielding the view of it a bit just in case there were other onlookers.
(Assuming chief has no issues with the terms as stated)
"There's one thing you should know as well, Mr. Chief Sootscale." Kyrie added, "After hearing from Mikmek about the happenings with your clan, we tried investigating the true nature of this statue. As far as we could tell, this piece of carved ivory is, well, just a normal piece of ivory that's just been carved into a shape. We couldn't find anything special about it. No magic, and it doesn't have any feeling of malevolence to it that I would expect of something that represents an entity that accepts sacrifice."
In case anyone was wondering, a purple kobold is not considered standard colouration.
Kobold Caverns - Common Room/Tartuk's Quarters
Chief Sootscale barely tore his eyes from the bloodstained ivory statuette to listen to Frodrick's terms.
“I'm afraid I cannot do that for you. As much as it pains me to admit, the curse over my tribe has deprived me of many things—including the wealth of the tribe. I do not know the ring you speak of, but if it is among my tribe's treasures, it is most certainly in the possession of our shaman, Tartuk. If I could, I would most certainly accept your bargain.”
Frodrick nodded. "It is good to see some folks are willing to be civilized in these here wild parts. Now onto other business. We heard that there is a certain individual who has seemingly usurped your role. Also heard he is threatening all 'o you with some death curse if you dont serve a deity. We be willing to help you with this case, but again: we ain't in a giving mood - we will expect some compenation." (etc...)
The kobold chieftan seemed to bristle slightly at the suggestion that his people might be labeled an inconvenience to be dealt with. Nevertheless, he knew the value of the deal he was making, and perhaps more importantly, was realistic about the weakened state of his tribe.
“Tartuk has driven my tribe into the ground in supplication to his god.” Sootscale threw a baleful look at the statue in Kyrie's hands. “It is under his direction my people attack all outsiders coming to the hills, and at his command that we have been fighting a losing war with the mites to the north.”
Sootscale's eyes flicked between Frodrick, the party, and his subjects gathered. Frodrick detected at least a measure of calculated cunning in those eyes. Even more, he saw the kobold chieftan's desperation.
“I care for nothing more than to see my people survive to prosper, free from Tartuk's curse. Give me the statue of the god and I will personally lead you to my shaman's quarters. If this ring you desire is among his loot, you may consider it yours.”
Kyrie looked to Frodrick. The dwarf approved of this deal—it was not quite the same shape as they had planned, but it involved nothing they didn't expect to come of it anyway.
Kyrie approached Sootscale's pile of furs with the statue, and the chief descended to meet her. As she handed Old Sharptooth to him, she informed him what they had found about the statue's special properties—or lack thereof.
Sootscale looked at the carved lump of ivory, bewildered. “How... I... I've seen the bodies of the cursed myself! That damned purple shaman... he told us of the power of the statue... he showed us what happened when his god was displeased. It was all a trick.” The kobold's voice was dangerously soft. His claws trembled in anger, tightening around the statuette.
The strength seemed to go from the chieftan's body. “Then there is nothing to fear.”
This melancholy did not last long. Just as quickly the kobold suddenly lifted the statue above his head, shrieking in triumph, and then smashed it against the ground.
“My brothers and sisters, we have been tricked!” He repeated this sentence in Draconic, with further yapping that the party did not comprehend. When he was finished, he marched out beyond the ring of skulls around his throne to a chorus of nearly a dozen cheers.
“Come, we go to kill the usurper.”
Striding purposefully with new vigour and confidence, Chief Sootscale led the party out a passage connecting with the tunnel they'd avoided earlier. He followed the curve around to another room at the end of the hall.
Inside the cavern the walls were decorated with a rickety wooden frame strewn with banners covered in dozens of sloppily primitive icons and mystic symbols, clearly intending to project an air of power and mystery. At a cauldron in the centre of the room, with his back to the door, claws folded behind him was a purple kobold, with a massive raven, wings spread wide, perched on his back.
As he heard them approach, the kobold spoke, all smugness and contempt as he turned to face the door. “My dear Sootscale, I thought we had put an end to your little—”
Tartuk turned to face the door, raven's wings framing his head in an impressive display of power and prestige. The moment he saw the tallfolk flanking the chieftan, he dropped all-knowing act like a particularly poisonous insect.
Kobold Caverns – Tartuk's Quarters
Tartuk reacted almost immediately. He threw his raven at the party in the door. The scruffy black bird flew at Kyrie's face, pecking her and flapping around her head (-1sub Kyrie). While he had them distracted, he called up his magic and cast a spell at Miguel. The bard was filled with an intense fear for a moment, before throwing it off, nerves still on edge from the attack (Miguel Shaken).
The strange purple kobold drew a sickle from his belt and stepped back, reaching his free arm out to the right. A wand flew from the table in the corner to his outstretched arm, where he plucked it from the air. “It's about time. Do your worst.”
Kyrie took this sentiment to heart. She did not need her sight to make her judgement. The paladin called upon her power, marking Tartuk against her protection.
She ignored the raven flapping around her head, trying to duck as she ran past. It pecked her once more for her troubles, drawing some blood (-1sub Kyrie). She ignored the pain and drew the kobold's attention to her as she strafed around him.
Tartuk took the bait perhaps too well. He slashed at Kyrie's exposed flank as she ran past. She twisted to avoid most of the attack, but when the sickle blade scraped her flesh, the pain set her teeth on edge unlike any normal strike (-5dmg Kyrie).
She grit her teeth and swung her shovel in repayment. Tartuk brought up his wand-hand to block the blow, catching the shovel against a semi-visible disk of force. Spell-shield or no, Tartuk could not block the whole force of the strike, and Kyrie drove him into the wall, pinning him between his own shield for a second.
While he was distracted, Miguel took the opportunity to move into a flanking position across from Kyrie. He slashed at the shaman, but Tartuk blocked the blow with the shield of force and a contemptuous look for the far taller creatures closing in on it. “Come on, gods damn it, I've eaten calves with more fight in them!”
|Zeran saw this as the perfect opportunity. “Eat this, then!” He pulled the trigger on his pistol and sent a lead ball just over Tartuk's head, putting a small hole in the painted covering behind him. Curses. That one-liner would have sounded a lot more dramatic if he'd hit.
With Miguel and Kyrie on either side, Tartuk was pressured to avoid attacks from two directions at once. Only Zeran's direction held no threat as the gunslinger worked quickly to reload—but even from that angle, Tartuk was faced by an aged dwarf barrelling toward him.
With an imperious scowl at those surrounding him, Tartuk held his wand up and commanded a pair of shimmering bolts of energy, one at Kyrie the other at Miguel, striking with sudden and unerring force (-4dmg Kyrie (9/13)) (-2dmg Miguel).
The bolt struck Miguel at a fraction of the force it should have had. The shaman turned to Kyrie, to the almost imperceptible protective nimbus radiating from the paladin. “Your magic protects those around you, but not you. Clever. Foolish.”
Tartuk stepped past Kyrie and Frodrick, away from Miguel, toward the heap of junk in the right alcove of the cavern. “Fortunately, I am not without my own minions.” From the mismatched pile of 'treasures' behind Tartuk rose a shield, a tattered leather cuirass, and most of a broken sword. With ethereal ease it floated around to hover, flanking Frodrick with the shaman.
Meanwhile the hideous raven moved on from Kyrie to harass Zeran, unable to fight back while he reloaded. The gunslinger ducked as best he could, but couldn't avoid the flapping featherbrain (-1sub Zeran)
(I swear, my word processing program is going to have a fit sooner or later with how often the combination 'Miguel and Kyrie' comes up in sentence.)
Posted on 2013-12-26 at 09:32:38.
Edited on 2013-12-26 at 20:39:45 by Sibelius Eos Owm
This battle is turning out much more entertaining than I'd expected at first.
Kobold Caverns – Tartuk's Quarters
Krii, now properly protected with his own magic, followed the rest into the room, stopping next to Zeran (without getting too close to whatever situation he was having with that bird there...). Krii charged his fingers with sorcererous energy and fired an arc of electricity at Tartuk, but his aim was still suffering from the effects of the poison—his aim was unsteady and the effort of not accidentally shooting Frodrick was throwing him off. The bolt struck the banner, blackening a small burnt patch on it.
Meanwhile, Kyrie kept the pressure on. The shaman's attacks were beginning to wear her down, but she could handle more than that. She channeled energy into her body with a thought as she lunged at Tartuk (+3dmg Kyrie). Instead of attacking him, she tried to disarm him of his magical tools. While she was focused on one hand, though, Tartuk took advantage with his other—he cut with his sickle, this time a more serious, bloody wound across her abdomen (-7dmg Kyrie 5/21), while Kyrie felt the sensation of nails being dragged across a chalkboad echoed in mind.
Forcing herself to push through the pain, Kyrie did not waver as she struck down the wand out of Tartuk's other hand, then quickly stooped to pick it up before he could retrieve it. (Kyrie technically unarmed at the moment)
Miguel looked to the floating bits of rubbish next to him (well, okay, that shield was pretty high-quality, but the rest was broken). He didn't know what it was on sight, but if it was some kind of magical creation or summoning by Tartuk, he did know one easy way to be rid of it—he stepped up next to Kyrie and Frodrick and threw his sword into the matter. Miguel cut a clean sweep at Tartuk as his wand—and shield—arm was indisposed, forcing the shaman to stumble back, suffering a mild cut across his purple chest (-9dmg Tartuk Battered).
With the bird harassing him and being a general nuissance, Zeran was forced to retreat some ground so he could reload his weapon in peace, quickly stuffing another charge of powder into the barrel of his pistol.
Then while Kyrie disarmed Tartuk's magic and Miguel lunged at him, Frodrick loosened the shield on his arm, throwing it over his shoulder. Keeping his axe in his other hand, just in case, Frodrick threw himself into Tartuk's personal space, grabbing the shaman by the shoulder.
“What's the matter old man?” Tartuk spat in surprise, “did your wife kick you out last night? Or do you just have a thing for scales?”
The shaman wriggled in Frodrick's grip, his free arm clawing at the dirt behind him. “You look like a dwarf who's seen a lot,” he grunted. “Let me show you fear in a handful of dust.” Tartuk threw the dust at Frodrick's face, squawking out a spell.
... Suddenly Frodrick's mind blanked. He was no longer in the kobold warren, but on the battlefield, goblin and dwarf bodies laying all around him, those ungodly rats the gobbos called 'dogs' running amok. In his hands was a young dwarf, far too young to be in all this fighting, he thought. It was his son (did he really have a son? He couldn't remember, it didn't matter), except before his eyes the body's skin turned green and warped, until it was a grinning, bearded goblin in his hands...
Terror filled Frodrick's mind, clinging to Tartuk, shaking (Frodrick Frightened).
Meanwhile toward the entrance, Tartuk's infernal raven continued to harry Zeran, chasing after him with that wicked beak of its (-1sub Zeran), with a congregation of awestruck kobolds, too scared to come closer but too fascinated to stay away, watched from further down the tunnel.
Almost entirely forgotten, the construct of floating detritus moved to stand between Tartuk (and Frodrick) and the only exit to the room, making for an annoying barrier to Zeran and Krii's ranged attacks.
(On Frodrick's turn, unless something changes by then, he will have no choice but to escape Tartuk as best he can, by fleeing to the opposite side of the room.)
Posted on 2013-12-26 at 22:34:25.
Edited on 2013-12-26 at 22:35:03 by Sibelius Eos Owm