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You are here: Home --> Forum Home --> Rules-based RPGs --> Dungeons and Dragons --> A Single Stone...
Parent thread: A Single Stone... Q/A
GM for this game: Tek
Players for this game: Kaelyn, Hammer, Duncan74, Nimu, Brundel, Teller of Aryn, Salvator Navaar
    Messages in A Single Stone...
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Salvator Navaar
Resident
Karma: 6/0
333 Posts


.

Desrik remained silent as Bailox gestured for him to follow as the big man tracked what he clarified as the marks where a body was drug, simply doing as he was bid.

The short walk and sudden appearence of the naked corpse that had been dropped in a ditch brought a bit of bile to his throat, though he didn't know why. Honestly, he would have done much the same, but that the body would have been left where it fell. Perhaps it was simply that they had dishonored their prey so by placing it in a ditch with no sort of respect or honor. They had simply discarded the man like trash, taking even his clothes, which the mercenary could only assume weren't more than tattered wool.

Bailox also seemed quite angry, though likely for far simpler reasons. The man had honor that could humble many. Much different than Desrik. Bailox's honor extended to even the things no one would ever know about.
The young sell sword couldn't understand why. What reward would there be for burying the man, short of not having to look at it anymore?

But Desrik said nothing, just helping his friend bury the corpse and following him back to the group to rally the others. It seemed Bailox had found tracks. Finally!

........

Once the group was prepared, Desrik moved with Bailox. Normally, he would have attempted to lead, but it was clear to him that he wasn't the 'figurehead' of this group. And if he wouldn't be seen as the leader, he would do what he could to make Bailox so. Best to have an ally for the top dog.

The half-breed began some sort of chanting, sprinkling dirt on the fresh grave. What was that about? Likely just a point-ear superstition. The lot of them were nuts.
Still, the wizard wasnt so bad. For a point-ear...
Rolling his eyes when no one was looking, he removed his hat, holding it respectfully to his chest while the half-breed finished his little ceremony.

Once done, Desrik stepped forward. Speaking to the whole group, though his eyes remained on Ellice.

"These deaths are wrong, done through greed. And while my heart is sad for your loss, my dear, and my best wishes with you, we cannot remain for a true burial ceremony. Every moment we waste here is a moment less your daughter has, if she still lives..." He paused, watching her, but gauging ALL reactions. He had to know where his companions stood with this. He had given such speeches before, learning the jist from the many funerals he had attended, gazing apon the remaining family of his victims. Oh, the profitable days when he could kill a man, then offer his services to the family to catch the killer. No one had ever noticed a begger go missing every now and then.

Desrik shakes his head, returning to the events at hand.

"It... may be best if you return to the village now, and await our return. The carnage that is to come is no place for one in your state, nor for one who cannot use a blade.... Go back, seek out Molly. She will have a room for you, on my coin." He bids her, wanting her to leave. He knew it was only a matter of time before everyone here began to see him for what he was. Everyone did, eventually. But Ellice still had rewards for a good mercenary that got her daughter back to her. And all the more if he could embellish the story.....


Posted on 2013-06-02 at 21:15:59.

Tek
Jumpin' Jack Smash
Karma: 44/13
675 Posts


Consideration

Deysor Twenty-Fourth, 1121
One Hour South of Graffton, Irvala Province
Brandost

Arms had been drawn by a few members of the group at the discovery of the unclothed, mutilated body of one of Ellice’s former companions. Tensions were high, and a bad feeling hung over the roadside. Typical highway robbers might cut a throat or slip a knife under the collarbone, but to hack into an already dying man with such ruthlessness, and then further, to steal from the lifeless form the clothes from his back... This was the act of the deranged.

Bailox and Desrik dug a shallow grave in the hard earth, barely deep enough to cover the body when laid within. But it was the very least the poor soul deserved, his mortal shell so desecrated and left to the prairie winds. Ja’aron gave a blessing to the perished, spoken in a tongue known only to he and his kind. But with it, he was set at peace beneath the enveloping earth.

The three returned to Ellice, where Adelror and Elberon were tending to the distressed lass. At their approach, she scrambled forth, her slender hands tightly grasping the big man’s arm and pleading eyes looking up at him. Bailox delivered the description of the slaughtered Syln, which brought a choked gasp from Ellice’s throat.

“Jakob...” She whispered, pressing a hand to her mouth. Anguish decorated her face, and she began to sob, though she found the strength to keep her feet beneath her.

Desrik stepped forth, presenting the protection of Graffton’s boundaries to Ellice while he and the others sought out the thugs who had assaulted her and her kin. While the mercenary managed to keep it relatively tame, his wording indicated that things would be gruesome. Punishment would be dealt upon them to avenge Jakob - and whomever else might have fallen beneath the cruel blades of the hiding brigands.

She did not reply immediately, trying to catch her breath before attempting to speak. But when Ellice did utter words, they carried with them an anger greatly unexpected from the young woman.

“He was my friend...” Her eyes were red-rimmed as she looked straight at Desrik. “They all were. And my daughter is missing. My Hannah. I want to see them hurt. I want them to feel the pain they inflicted on anybody unlucky enough to have met them. Because now, they’re the unlucky ones, because they’re about to meet all of you.”

She wiped her wrist across her nose, sniffling as she scrubbed off weeping-induced-snot. “I cannot safely go back to Graffton by myself. If they are near, they may avoid you and come for me by myself. Weapon or not, the safest thing is to stay near you. So that’s what I am going to do.”

Bailox thundered out his challenge to the plains around them, rallying the spirits of battle that lay within his companions. He was ready to fight, and the indication of the borne weapons of Desrik and Adelror said that they, too, were prepared to seek out these goons, wherever they may be. The brutish Syln had identified the direction in which they had fled; all that remained now was to find them, and bring punishment upon the guilty.

(OOC: Short one. Not needing long posts. Basically, make up a plan. I don’t want to railroad you guys into something if you have alternate ideas for what you do here. I’ll update when we get an idea in place.)


Posted on 2013-06-07 at 02:57:23.

Duncan74
Dunkelzahn
Karma: 61/1
931 Posts


Bailox's Input

Bailox felt the battleblood roar within his veins as he bellowed his readiness to hunt the fiends.

However, having the advantage of being a somewhat intelligent barbarian warrior, he realized that just charging pell-mell into the midst of the fleeing brigands could invite disaster.

He turned to the others. "Hear me, companions. We know the direction they went. We are still not sure of their numbers, or if they flee to a camp or base of some wise, wherein may lie more of them in wait."

He gazed at them all in turn. "I will help in making whatever plan of attack we can agree upon. Myself, I have considerable tracking skills. There may be one of you with greater skill in regard to shadowing prey with stealth. Whomever it may be, my suggestion is that said person scout ahead and gather a more complete understanding of what we face when we catch up to them. It is no slight or shame to know one's foe before engaging them in battle."

Bailox spied a fair-sized boulder and sat down upon it, still weary from the previous night's merrymaking and lack of sleep. "So let us reason together...before we shed blood together."

He eyed each companion in turn and awaited their contributions to their next course of action.


Posted on 2013-06-07 at 13:49:16.

Hammer
Extreme Exclaimator!
Karma: 90/24
4114 Posts


War Cleric Counsel

He gazed at them all in turn. "I will help in making whatever plan of attack we can agree upon. Myself, I have considerable tracking skills. There may be one of you with greater skill in regard to shadowing prey with stealth. Whomever it may be, my suggestion is that said person scout ahead and gather a more complete understanding of what we face when we catch up to them. It is no slight or shame to know one's foe before engaging them in battle."

Bailox spied a fair-sized boulder and sat down upon it, still weary from the previous night's merrymaking and lack of sleep. "So let us reason together...before we shed blood together."

He eyed each companion in turn and awaited their contributions to their next course of action.

"I Be Ah Dell Roar the Avenger!

"Ye Be Givin Wise Counsel O Mighty One!

"Ellice Be Bound An Determined To See Blood Shed This Day!

"I Be Stayin Near Her Ta Protect Her!

"I Be Also Noticin Da Wizard Elberon Be Carryin A Sling!

"I Be Carryin 3 Stones Fer Spell Castin Upon ... So He Kin Be Flingin Em!

"That Be Ifn He Be Standin Close By!

"Me Sword Be Ready!

"Blood Be Soakin De Groun This Day!

"Know This Ellice ... Hannah Will Be Found ... Her Abductors Will Pay ... As Will De Shedders O Innocent Blood ... An De Slayers O Yer Friends!"


Posted on 2013-06-08 at 05:07:36.

Duncan74
Dunkelzahn
Karma: 61/1
931 Posts


Bailox

Bailox nodded in approval at the Duskarn cleric's enthusiasm. Such a taste for battle would indeed be needed when the enemy was found; the brigands obviously had a penchant for violence.

He shifted to a more comfortable position upon the boulder. "Methinks we need a way to scout the enemy without dividing our numbers, so that we may engage them in force when the time comes. And time is of the essence. A quicker option would be to summon a means to cloak our entire party's presence. I speak these ideas only because I have seen diviners and mystics perform just such feats."

Again, he looked at his companions with a questioning eye. "Does anyone here possess such talents, or talents of a nature to give us the advantage? Atlam knows that I am a warrior of honor, but I've no qualms about using whatever advantage I can gain when confronting honorless dogs such as these. They do not deserve such honor or consideration. Or do we simply follow their path, and engage in battle as necessary?"


Posted on 2013-06-08 at 20:41:34.

Kaelyn
Dragon Fodder
Karma: 80/19
2264 Posts


a plan in motion

Ja'aron listened to those around him, he scoured the area as far as his sight would allow him, but realized quickly that beyond the hill in which the tracks were leading, only the unknown awaited.

Bailox spoke of magic and stealth, and though Ja'aron did possess the boon of the Great Mother within his blood, he was neither very skilled, nor proficient in the type of wizardry to which the warrior hinted.

What he lacked in magical prowess however, he made up for with ingenuity, and a trusted sidekick.

Bending down to his pack, it was no time at all before Mae poked her ashen head out, and hopped up into his palm. He held out a dried raisin, and Mae happily packed it into her cheek as he smiled. It was then however that to observers, things would turn strange.

Ja'aron reached into his pack and pulled forth a wedge of hard tack bread, and jammed it into his own cheeks, moving it from left to right trying to soften the large chunk some to little avail. He then began to chitter at the critter, pointing over the hill and pawing at the air with his free hand. He motioned to other's standing around, and gave a wide eyed look of fright! before scampering up his arm (the one attached to the hand holding mae) with his free hand two fingers running up the length.

Mae chittered along happily and ran up the initiates arm, down his back, and right leg to the ground, and then was soon running for the hills, literally. She would run until she was lost in the grass or the distance, and Ja'aron prayed in his native tongue for her safety.

(I've pm'ed Tek about sending Mae out for recon, she is merely to scout ahead until she notices a group of humanoids, or is afraid, and then to return)

Turning to the others before chewing and eventually with some effort swallowing the bread, he grinned that quirky grin of his. "Fear not, though I am no dancer of shadows, Mae is quite accustomed to getting in and out of places unnoticed, why just the other day she managed to nibble on my nuts for what must have been hours before I noticed the hole in my sack." Little glutton she is."

He looked to the hills and waved nonchalantly. "With any luck we'll have an answer to your queries soon"


Posted on 2013-06-09 at 05:59:14.

Duncan74
Dunkelzahn
Karma: 61/1
931 Posts


Nuts and sacks and nibbles...oh my. ;)

Bailox chuckled as the small rodent ran into the distance. From what he knew of druids, he had no trouble accepting that the small one could commune with Ja'aron in its own way, providing the party with much-needed information if it returned intact. He almost managed not to chuckle again as he silently asked mighty Atlam to look after a chipmunk. His anger momentarily and refreshingly vanished as he watched Ja'aron struggle with the hard bread in his mouth. He laughed even harder when Ja'aron explained Mae's recent...activities.

"Ah, friend Ja'aron," he said between bouts of laughing, "what you and your friend do behind closed doors is entirely your own affair."

With a few final chuckles, Bailox deftly removed his bedroll from his backpack and spread it on a relatively soft patch of ground. He removed the pack and his weapons and laid them nearby, taking special care that the weapons were within easy and instant reach of his hands and situated for ease of reloading if they had to move out quickly. He took a long swig from his waterskin and quickly ate a small handful of rations. He then lowered himself to the ground and stretched out upon his bedroll.

"The brigands have a bit of a lead on us; it will take Ja'aron's short friend some time to return, and I am weary," he explained to his companions. "Worry not; if trouble comes, I will awaken as quickly as I am about to fall aslumber." And with that, he closed his eyes, knowing he needed at least a small amount of rest, and that a warrior on the march catches his naps as he can. Within seconds, the weary warrior was asleep.

(OOC: If ugliness comes while Bailox is sleeping, do be good chaps and not let it eat him-heh.)


Posted on 2013-06-09 at 06:28:15.
Edited on 2013-06-09 at 06:32:51 by Duncan74

Salvator Navaar
Resident
Karma: 6/0
333 Posts


plan?

Desrik simply waited as the others spoke of their plan of attack, his thoughts still not organized as much as he would like. He simply leaned in the broken house, waiting for a plan to come to him. Likely a plan he wouldnt share with the party.

He did however, make one comment.
"Bailox, my friend. EVERY warrior is to be treated with honor, even if he himself possesses none. It is what makes men like you and me better than common brigands. We would do best to fight them on open ground, albeit the ground of our choosing."

He lowered himself to a sitting position, sword laid before him, ready to grasp, and watched the small rodent scamper away. He was beginning to understand this half breed a little more....


Posted on 2013-06-09 at 19:26:38.

Brundel
Resident
Karma: 18/0
207 Posts


A quick nap

Thankfully, after an agonizingly long few minutes stood in front of the large crowd that had gathered the party were leaving, the now stronger-looking girl leading the way. Elberon began to flag quickly after they had left the town gates, the pace was much faster than he was used to and he was still lacking a nights sleep so after an hour of travelling Elberon was happy they had reached their destination.

As they all began looking around, searching for clues Elberon saw that it did not take an expert tracker to see what had happened. Blood had merged with the crisp white snow leaving a pinky stain on the ground below. Tracks led off in almost every direction and one track looked as though something had been dragged through the snow, it was then that he realised their were no corpses littering the road. Soon Desrik and Bailox went off to investigate further and Elberon was glad it was not he who was asked to find out about what had happened to the bodies. When the pair returned it was clear that they had found something and the sombre expression on their faces told of bad news.

Once they had explained what they had had to do a plan began to be formed. Elberon however, was slow to input to this plan this was the first time that he had experienced death that wasn't caused of old age or illness. Soon enough he pulled himself together, after Ja'arons pet had been sent on its way Elberon had decided to join Bailox in his slumber, even if he could just get an hours rest he was sure he would feel much better.


Posted on 2013-06-12 at 15:04:44.

Tek
Jumpin' Jack Smash
Karma: 44/13
675 Posts


Assessment

Deysor Twenty-Fourth, 1121
One Hour South of Graffton, Irvala Province
Brandost

While muscle and magic were two things not for lacking in the team from Graffton, the ability for espionage was another matter entirely, something which none of them possessed. At least, directly. That talent emerged in the tiny grey form of Mae the chipmunk. And while the little one could not speak the language of the men before her, her halfblood companion knew just how to relay the message to the furry creature.

With a rather absurd show of pantomime, the druid, with cheek loaded full of tack bread, was able to watch in satisfaction as Mae scampered off towards the snow-dusted hill, soon lost amidst the white backdrop of the roadside. In the midst of an area so given to nature, provided the chipmunk didn’t run up the trouser leg of the unsuspecting, or worse; scrounge around for an unlucky nut-containing pouch, she would likely be perfectly undetectable, even sitting nearby.

Further, the rather absurd antics of Ja’aron, coupled with an enormously awkward notification of his rations being devoured, was enough to lighten the tense atmosphere some, bringing a deep bout of laughter from the mighty Bailox, and even a few determined chuckles from Ellice, who watched the rodent until it was gone from sight. Now, the enemy was the time spent waiting, a matter which Bailox and Elberon both addressed by stretching out on the cold ground and trying to catch a few moments rest. A hangover would pass regardless of slumber, but trying to stay awake through its entirety served nobody any good, especially when blood was soon to be shed.

Desrik took a seat in his usual introverted thoughtfulness, his sword before him, awaiting an update to take action. Adelror was very much the opposite, his loud and up-front nature being a strengthening base for the uneasy spirits of some. Ellice stayed near to the Duskarn, though her eyes, Desrik noticed, kept drifting back towards his sword.

Roughly twenty minutes crept by before the group was rejoined by Mae, who bounded up and over Bailox’s chest, awakening him from the few moments of sleep he’d been able to snatch, and raced up to Ja’aron to pass on what she had seen.

It was time. Scooping up the tiny creature, the druid began to chant soft words in a prayer to the natural forces, to the plants and to the animals, and for the gift of the tongue of beasts. He felt the magics of the land pour through his being, and it was
not long before Mae’s chittering’s became words, though simple ones.

Eight.

Blood.

Dead.

One like you.

One like me. Bigger.

Not far.

Not hiding.

Trail not hidden.

Left map for you.

With that conveyed, the critter rubber her little paws together eagerly, her nose twitching at the scent of something.

Nuts?
By the look on her face, it was unclear as to whether Ellice had never seen the workings of magic before, or simply had no idea as to what had just transpired between the druid and his pet. But with a very curious look on her face, the lass took a step towards the half-breed. “Can...you speak to it? Or can it speak to you? What did it see?” The girl’s emotions were so all over the place this day, it was amazing she hadn’t rested yet. For going from weeping to excitable at the display between druid and companion, Ellice was either running on pure adrenaline, or possessed a fortitude like that of the warriors.

She turned to Adelror, her eyes focused on the gemstone in his beard. “The colour of blood... Avenge the dead, Adelror. This place, this day.”

(OOC: Mae is back, and relayed her information to Ja’aron as a wired chipmunk might do. She found them, and by the short amount of time it took a tiny creature to travel, find them, gather that information, and return... They aren’t far.)


Posted on 2013-06-13 at 16:18:55.
Edited on 2013-06-13 at 17:13:06 by Tek

Kaelyn
Dragon Fodder
Karma: 80/19
2264 Posts


Ja'aron and Mae

Eight.

Blood.

Dead.

One like you.

One like me. Bigger.

Not far.

Not hiding.

Trail not hidden.

Left map for you.

Ja'aron gently stroked the top of Mae's head with a single finger, before opening his free palm revealing a small assortment of nuts and berries to which Mae happily dove into.
"Thank you little one" Ja'aron said with a smile.

Turning to the others he listened to Ellice's inquiry and nodded. "The world and her inhabitants speak to us as plainly as you and I do now, though most of us simply do not hear her. The song on the wind, the reassurance in the rainfall, everything has meaning and purpose if one steps back long enough to listen."

He pointed to the Hill and continued. "However stepping back is not our current option. Mae has said she's seen eight humanoids I'm guessing, she's mentioned blood so I do not know if they are all foes, or if she's counting wounded captives as well. She says they are out in the open and not far beyond the rise, though she also mentioned something akin to her but bigger. I would presume they have some sort of animal with them as well, perhaps a hunting dog or other such pet. "

Ja'aron took a step towards the hill. "We may be outnumbered, but we should have the element of surprise, for who would beset a camp of bandits midday so soon after a raid? Mae says she's left me a map, I will know it when we get closer I'd think. We should make haste."


Posted on 2013-06-13 at 19:14:50.

Duncan74
Dunkelzahn
Karma: 61/1
931 Posts


At last

Bailox awakened instantly as the little chipmunk scampered across him on its way to Ja'aron. Whilst the hangover had not departed, the short nap was refreshing, and lessened the pounding of his head a bit.

As it only took the small furry one a few minutes to return, their quarry was obviously not far; so, as Ja'aron relayed what Mae had seen, Bailox was swiftly rerolling his bedroll, tying it back to his pack, and reslinging the backpack and his weapons with practiced movements. By the time Ja'aron's report was delivered, Bailox was ready to move out and primed for battle.

As they prepared to move out, Bailox gripped the blade of his short sword tightly, until a dripping line of blood had been drawn across his palm. He held the bleeding palm to his heart and silently said the prayer he had always offered to Atlam before battle. Mighty Atlam, by my blood, I ask you to grant us the courage to face the battle ahead, the strength to overcome our foes, the wisdom to acquit ourselves with honor, and the power to destroy the dishonorable.
He slid his shord sword back into its scabbard on his waist and looked at his companions. "In moments, we face battle. In moments, we will kill. For if we do not, death surely awaits. The enemy's steel does not care about your moral stance. Blood must be shed. But I will say this: if your morals should not allow you to take a life, be certain that your chosen tactics stop your foe. For they shall obviously have no issue with ending us. And if you are indeed able to subdue any of our foes that they may provide us with answers, so much the better. We must secure the lass's daughter, and we must stop these brigands from ever doing this to anyone else."

His voice became grave. "No battle is certain. We may fall. But if we are to meet our end, then by Atlam, make these bastards pay dearly for our lives."

He stood straighter and drew in a huge breath of the clean air, readying himself for the coming battle. "I stand ready when you are, companions."


Posted on 2013-06-13 at 21:58:29.
Edited on 2013-06-13 at 22:22:32 by Duncan74

Hammer
Extreme Exclaimator!
Karma: 90/24
4114 Posts


Hand on Sword

Deysor Twenty-Fourth, 1121
One Hour South of Graffton, Irvala Province
Brandost
Marching to Battle
Morning

By the look on her face, it was unclear as to whether Ellice had never seen the workings of magic before, or simply had no idea as to what had just transpired between the druid and his pet. But with a very curious look on her face, the lass took a step towards the half-breed. “Can...you speak to it? Or can it speak to you? What did it see?” The girl’s emotions were so all over the place this day, it was amazing she hadn’t rested yet. For going from weeping to excitable at the display between druid and companion, Ellice was either running on pure adrenaline, or possessed a fortitude like that of the warriors.

She turned to Adelror, her eyes focused on the gemstone in his beard. “The colour of blood... Avenge the dead, Adelror. This place, this day.”

"Avenge We Shall Ellice!"
Then the Duskarn War Cleric, wearing the raised fist of Dareen, called Elberon aside, conferring with the Wizard that he was about to cast a spell upon 3 stones he held in his hand, which he would in turn pass to Elberon to use as missiles against their hunted adversaries!

OOC: Adelror will cast the spell upon the 3 stones at the best time to give to Elberon to use the spell enhanced stones to fling them with his Sling, before they catch sight of their quarry!
Meanwhile, with assurances to Ellice, he instructs the woman to walk with him, allowing her to touch the end of his sword hilt, upon which the War Cleric has a firm grip, so she can feel like she has a part in the coming battle, while the dwarf stands ready to defend her from any possible surprise attack, as they determinedly stalk their hunted prey!

"Lead On Bailox!

"May Atlan Protect Ye!

"Dareen Do No Less Fer Me!

"Ah Dell Roar Be Joining Ye All Ta Spill Blood This Day!"


Posted on 2013-06-14 at 19:57:43.

Tek
Jumpin' Jack Smash
Karma: 44/13
675 Posts


Upon the Quarry

Deysor Twenty-Fourth, 1121
One Hour South of Graffton, Irvala Province
Brandost

Mae’s exploratory endeavours, while a touch confusing in her report, had provided more information on the situation at hand than had previously been available. In a time such as this, anything helped to provide an advantage to the party, even something such as a scattered relaying of what her curious eyes had observed. Now enjoying her dried snack as a reward for her efforts, the chipmunk busied herself with something far more interesting to her than roaming around and looking at a bunch of thugs hiding out on the other side of one of these nearby hills.

Prayers and preparatory talks were made to get set for the battle to come. For the reflective, a moment of peaceful silence was just as valuable, while seeking favour from one’s deity was fortifying for others. However their preferred method in the prelude to conflict, the group readied themselves, and began their approach to the hillside.

Forming a rough circle, with Ellice safely positioned in the center, they marched across the uneven ground, following the broken snow that directed them as clearly as the roadway behind them. Multiple sets of footprints littered the white blanketing with dead grass from the fall prior, marking it as plainly as day once clear of the highway itself. However, no more bodies were found, which meant a better likeliness that Hannah was still alive.

The trail wound its way around the nearest hill, wide enough to provide a clear view of its backside that revealed nobody in wait. Snaking in a rough S path, it made its way around the next hill eastward, but it was a dozen yards or so from the base of it that Bailox noticed something a bit out of place here.

Tiny little feet had torn up their own path a few feet away from the broken up snow, where a small pile of empty acorn husks had been heaped. It was very possible that this was the ‘map’ Mae had indicated to Ja’aron, or at least, the beginnings of it.

Silent eyes picked out a trail run by the chipmunk around across the backside of the slope, and while the delicate pawprints rapidly disappeared from sight against the white backing, what was clearly visible was a yellow staining near a cropping of rough-edged grey rocks that emerged from the southern edge of the hill.

Ja’aron was correct in his assumption that he would be able to identify the markings left behind by his faithful critter, and indicating silence, led the way around towards the urine stain in the snow. Perfectly commonplace in a natural setting, but something that would mark out exactly what Mae wanted him to see.

The rocks were large enough to obscure a man when crouching behind them, and it was exactly that reason for concealment that the chipmunk had selected this area for her half-elven friend to find, for peering over its top, a clear view was afforded of the leeside, and thus, of the thugs that occupied its shelter.

No fire burned in their crude campsite, but an empty firepit had been dug in the middle of a circling of bedrolls and backpacks, as well as an assortment of miscellaneous camping items. Indeed, seven roughly-dressed humans hung around the site, eating, sharpening weapons, or talking to one another. Of the eighth, the druid’s assumption had been incorrect, for seated atop a large stone was the filthy form of a battle-scarred gnoll, gnawing meat from a snapped piece of bone.

It didn’t take long to spot the captives, the forms of three bodies bound and gagged, tucked away into the shadow offered by the sheer side of the hill. Blood stained the ground all around the base of the slope, but no corpses were evident. Aside from looks of terror on the face of a young girl, they appeared unhurt. But it was her wide eyes and tear streaked cheeks that drew instant emotion from Ellice, who grabbed Desrik’s forearm, being the nearest to her, and squeezed tightly.

“She’s alive!” She whispered, looking as though it were taking all her efforts to not rush out into the open. “My precious Hannah... And I see Norman, and Esther. But Anora.... Where is she?”

Surveying the scene yielded no results for the whereabouts of the one called Anora, which left a dismal feeling upon the spirits of the rescue team.

But, they had the element of surprise on their side. It did not appear that they had been spotted in their hiding place behind the rock cropping, so it was probably they were not even being expected. After all, Graffton was a town of farmers. What better place to prey upon travelers than a locale that would offer little to no risk of retaliation? That might play true in any other farm community, this one bore those ready to fight, and now they had been found, though it was yet unknown to them.

Adelror invoked his blessed magics to quietly bless the three stones he had gathered before, powering them with divine energy before handing them over to Elberon, while the others readied their weapons. The bandits weren’t far from where they hid; a surprise attack could easily be made from their vantage point.

(OOC: Here you are. Eight bandits in the sheltered area on the eastern side of the hill. Eastern edge is naturally eroded, creating a sheer face, where the captives are sitting about ten yards from your position. Close to them, but further out from the hill are the humans and gnoll. The gnoll is on the farthest edge. None appear to notice your presence.)


Posted on 2013-06-18 at 22:01:50.

Brundel
Resident
Karma: 18/0
207 Posts


The difference in Fantasy and Reality

Elberon awoke to the sound of his comrades' voices. Mae had returned and from what Ja'Aron interpreted, the small chipmunk had left tracks to show the route. All of the adventurers appeared to go through some ritual or habit before they started off, whether this was to calm there nerves or get them ready for the combat to come it would remain to be seen. Elberon had never been in such a situation and had no such rituals himself and felt a little out of place. Nevertheless he readied himself as best he could.

As they began their trek off the path and into the snow-packed floor of the fields Elberon's thoughts began to swim. What seemed like a million possibilities ran through his head and within minutes Elberon was seriously regretting his choices over the last few days. This was no longer the exhilarating fantasies that he had entertained of ridding the world from evil, but instead it was the constant thought of certain death.

The sun was reaching the top of its zenith as the group reached the collection of stones where the track stopped. Elberon, as well as everybody else, peered through the various gaps in the rock formation to see what foes they had been chasing. Eight men sat at ease talking in low voices and sharpening nasty looking weapons and occasionally laughing with one another. It appeared that the the bandits did not expect attack and Elberon hoped that the appearance showed the truth. Next Elberon saw the captives beaten and tied up and he could see the panic in the sudden movements and wide eyes.

The books of the libraries at his home had depicted many scenes similar to this and the heroes would always look upon such a sight and draw great courage from it, knowing that their cause was just. For Elberon however the feeling was far different. Shamefully he could only think about himself tied up next to the captives and instead of becoming more courageous Elberon became more fearful of the enemies that lay in the valley below.

Finally Elberon saw the Gnoll sitting far away from the eight bandits and he began to panic even more. He had entertained the idea of reasoning with the men instead of fighting, but know it was clear that that would not be the case. You cannot reason with vicious animals. Fear spread through Elberon and he was trying to think up excuses as to why he must return to Graffton or his home, but none came.

Thankfully Adelror came to him and he was distracted from his self-pitying. In his hand, Elberon noticed, were three large stones. When the Duskarn reached Elberon the cleric cast a spell upon the three rocks and handed them to Elberon.

“I am afraid Adelror that I may not be best suited to carry these, I have never even used a sling before I have only read the instructions to use such a weapon. I will however try my best, Thank you.”

When Adelror left him to his thoughts once more he realised that he was not so fearful any longer. It is funny how a simple act of camaraderie can change a mans emotions so quickly, Elberon thought to himself. From some deep recess Elberon had found his courage and it did not feel how he expected. He thought that courage was blood pumping fast and hard through your veins and your thoughts were centred on a single thing to avenge, to fight, to kill. Yet this feeling was quite the opposite of these things. His thoughts were clearer and his breathing calmer he could see now that he must join this fight and there was no going back.


Posted on 2013-06-19 at 10:31:06.
Edited on 2013-06-19 at 10:31:24 by Brundel

   


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