Every table in the Kings Hall had, sat around them, odd groups of Humans, Dwarves, Elves and Halflings who, judging by their disposition, clearly possessed varying skills. At one table were Cor's and his companions, made up of unique individuals with no real fighting experience of note and Lothor expected that they were not alone. All of the groups of around seven or eight in number seemed to be much the same and Lothor was not confident in all their ability, let alone credibility. Some had patches over one eye and a mean smile, golden teeth glinting off candlelight, others looked the part in fine armour much like his and shining scabbards with polished hilts, yet they did not sit comfortably and seemed to cringe as the Kings brief continued, its danger ever increasing.
Lothor joined them in the cringe-worthy speech full of valour and honour, not to mention the almost certainty of death. Lothor had been thinking recently, whilst he sat holed up in the St.Albans vast city estate.
Since he had been captured by the mountain Giants his whole aspect on life had changed, before that capture he had been a simple man earning only enough coin to feed himself and maintain his weapons and armour, anything extra he would give to the poor. He had helped people rebuild their homes and fought off monsters and bandits, but would accept no reward, bar a bed and meals. Now though, he had seen a god take a humanoid form, a dragon in full flight and a million creatures besieging the capital of a whole realm. Before, he had thought everyone lived in small communities struggling to make enough harvest to feed them all year round. Now he knew this not to be true.
He wished he had never joined Cor and the Giants had eaten him when he was a captive there. For now he knew their was a whole world to be explored full of new experiences, full of wonder and adventure. It seemed a sick joke, told by fate, that it was about to be taken away from him, perhaps this very night.
The King finished his speech and everyone was beginning to filter out and leave the gigantic hall, where even a Giant could question the need for such a high ceiling. Just before leaving however, Cor rounded them all up and told them of his plan, or lack of.
As for a plan, well now Ithink I'll skip it this time and just go with: destroy the ballista and any evil creatures near it and then hightail it out. Any questions?"
No questions were asked and they all ventured back to the estate and once there Lothor headed straight to his room. Allowing dark thoughts to harbour in his mind.
There he waited for midnight, the time crawling agonisingly slow. He felt that he should be enjoying the hours that may be his last, but all that filled his head were regrets and bad memories.
Valene had waited for Ulthok to finish study and joined him to prepare for up coming ….adventure. When Ulthok finishes what he is doing, she takes his hand and kisses him gently. "So are we ready, dear one? I believe this should prove...a bit of a surprise to the enemy...”
They walked together mostly in silence back to the room to pack. Peri and could not miss that the usually jovial Halfling was quiet and dour. To the mage the dangers of the past were a risk each chose to face and he knew each could die, but the other were just party members. The loss of his brother had pierced the thick hide the Halfling had developed to keep emotion from touching too close. He now had formed a tender bond with the mischievous Halfling female and the endearing Faerie Dragon. The loss of either of these was something he did want to think about. He hoped it would not cause him to error in his duties to the team.
As Ulthok sorted his items to determine what leave to lighten his he pull the brown protective body suit from the pack. He always wore one under his clothes and Valene had made fun of black long underware he wore even in the heat of summer.
“Val……. These are not just warm underware. These are protective body armor that is light and strong. It is what a thief….er…procurement master needs to move smoothly and quietly while still being protect as well as many fighters. This coming ….job…will be filled with danger from vicious weapons. This should fit you.. would you wear it? I can’t do much more to protect you.”
The mage held the body suit out to Valene. “It may hold you when I can’t.”
O.O.C. I wrote the above because I missed Val had +3 Elven Chain Mail, that gives her AC-3. I guess I was thinking more of the story and skimmed the charactor sheets too quickly. So we either ignor what I wrote or pretend Val answers by showing Ulthok the mail and saying something about she does have her own protection.
Posted on 2013-01-19 at 01:50:04.
Edited on 2013-01-20 at 16:37:57 by Odyson
Brianna Not Dragon Mistress Karma: 105/32 2282 Posts
Rayne spent her time shopping for needed items and whatever she thought would be of benfit to the group on this mext mission The problems was finding who had them and the least exorbitant price and was still reputible. She ate, rested, and prayed, and joined all the group meetings to keep abreast of what was going on. Also uring ther time in the city rayna went ot the temple where she prayed and served however she was needed
tayne cull her pack of unccecessary items and added moreuseful one back in. Extra oil, trail rations, healing salves. to her pack that she thought might be needful. Ahe refreshed her kealing kit. She bought extra healing potions from moderate to critical. The items she had culled outm such as leisure clothes and luxury sundriesm her writing materials and such. She packaged them all up and took them to her temple with a letter to her family and the majority of her money. . with her money all but a 100 of golf and 100 silver.
Going to the High Priest in Kith Hora's temple, Rayne requested him to save thiese things for her. "In the event I do not return, half the goldd and silver goes to Kith Hora. The rest with my personal belongings and this letter are to go to my family. Their direction is written clearly on the envelop,
"I serve Kithhora formany years now It was every my pleasure to do so. My request form yuo is that we know what we are facing the endo of the worldas we know it if we donotstop theDarkKing. I have one flask of holy water. Ia ther a possibility I can getmore? Though I recognize the currently the need is greatfor such things. Anything you can grant me would be appreciated."
Whatever he can grants gets packed awyfarefully. tayne adds extra arrows toher quiver and even adds more to a simple leather quiver to augment her total. anlong with extraflasks of oil, healing salves, trail rations and whatever she was able to get from the kingps cault. Kingps wault. JHopefully a powerful healing wand or two of the next highest level and any antitocin she could get her hands on.
Posted on 2013-01-20 at 19:08:51.
Edited on 2013-01-20 at 19:11:47 by Brianna
The party finally had their orders and a mission to undertake, with hours yet to kill they followed Cor back to the Ville. The wizards readied spells in the normal way, the fighters gathered the gear they would carry with them. During this time Lexson introduced herself to the rest and was greeted in turn and along with Sorin and Barreel attempted to make inroads into the circle of the seven friends. However be it the nature of the mission or the high chance of death the efforts of the three were blunted somewhat.
The hours crept moving so slow as to seem as if days then it was time to meet at the parties assigned egress point. With Cor once more in the lead they quickly moved through the fortress streets and arrived a little before the agreed time. Two wizards stood before them and a cleverly hidden door within the wall waiting for the time to cast their spells upon the party. As the party waited for the time to venture forth one of the wizards moved among the ten members and handed each a small brooch.
“These will hide your body heat from the infravision of those gathered before our walls. Mark your path well for the enemy beyond this door are many.”
Then it was 0058 hours and the wizards moved forward, gathered the party close together and cast the spells of Non-Detection one upon each. Without a sound the door in the wall opened and out into the night the ten member party moved. Before them they could see a landscape of rock created pits, fallen bits of wall and dozens of multi sized chunks of rock. Then they were moving single file with Ulthok as normal in the lead into the barren stripped no-mans land between the fortress walls and the enemy front lines. Within minutes they encountered the first patrol of 30 Orcs led by a Watcher Beholder. Going to ground relaying on the Non-Detection spell and the brooches, the party held their breath. Though the orcs would be easy kills the Watcher would not, easily raising the alarm at the same time attacking. Though not as dangerous as an elder or normal Beholder still it was no push over and was best to avoid it then engage it.
With the patrols passing and with a better idea of just what was guarding the perimeter of the enemies front lines, the party begin to move once more when suddenly a click was heard from under the shoe of Eclipse. In the still of the night the party all as one froze the click sounding as if a loud drum and told of a bad situation turned worse. Clearly the Ranger had stepped on a booby trap the nature of which was unknown. As the rest of the party once more went to ground Eclipse was unable, moving his foot a very bad idea. With Eclipse standing in clear view of any new or returning patrol Ulthok or Valene, the parties resident trap masters, would have to move quickly and work fast.
(DM OOC: Ok random trap roll, random party member roll. Sorry Eclipse. OK you don’t know the timing of the perimeter patrols, but the cloak is ticking. As for what type of trap Eclipse is standing on your going to need of course to examine then disarm.
Brianna I added to your sheet what you found in the Kings Vault off your list and what you found in the markets and deducted the needed funds as asked.
Next post Next Sunday)
Of all things to happen... It happens to Eclipse...
Eclipse notices the sound and immediately stops, he slowly lowers himself down as much as possible. He does this as to prevent the device from going off.
When he is low he quickly motions to the other party members that assistance is nevessary. As he does this, he makes sure his mask is secured in place, it was a tricky situation and he wasnt about to take any chances.
When he was sure he was set and the members notified of what is going on, he would slowly draw his bow and an arrow from the new quiver. He slowly and quietly notched the arrow but did not draw it, he would only draw it if it was necessary.
He would mutter under his breath...
"of all the things possible to happen... I get to step on a trap..."
Valene smiles softly at Ulthok and shows him her undergarments, made of light metal. "But I will keep this for when the armor is not needed if you do not mind." She gently kisses him and cuddles with him for a while before they have to last minute preparations for departure.
She accompanies Ulthok and Peri to meet the rest of the group for the venture to destroy the ballista. She dons her hat of disguise just as they leave, appearing to be but a common kolbald.
As they go further into enemy territory, she notices Eclipse trying to gain attention and she goes over to him.
Upon examination she sees the trap he has stepped on. She attempts to disarm it without alerting the enemy.
((Ok DM this is roll is yours))
As she removes the trap safely, she rejoins Ulthok and moves forward toward the objective.
The time to depart finally arrived and as the group assembled outside of the estate Lothor couldn't help but notice a change in the normally cheerful attitude, even Valene and Ulthok had solemn expressions. Though it had to be said that Periwinkle, maybe ignorant to what was about to come, was her normal bright self.
Once they were all ready they set off into the night and twisting streets of Craggian Core. Their pace was quicker than normal, nervous tension propelling them forward. As Lothor passed through the city he saw groups of refugees, some were small families huddling for warmth around a dying fire, but not all seemed as innocent. Men stood around wearing mismatching parts of beaten leather armour and carrying rusty and ill looking knives and after his recent foray outside of the city he decided to keep his head down and made sure not to lock eyes with any of the renegades.
They got to the meeting place early, but were soon greeted by a brace of wizards who proceeded to cast spells upon each of the party. It was an alien feeling on Lothor, but this time, instead of fearing and rejecting it he embraced it, full well knowing that it may be the last sensation before a spear was thrust into his side or he was set on fire by the long bony fingers of a mage.
Once the party was fully prepared the next spell directed at them, thrust the party outside of the city walls and into the nearest patrol of Orcs, led by a beholder. Lothor went straight to ground the cold mud pressed into his face, he could taste the grit and slime as he pressed himself shamelessly further into the ground trying to escape the beholders cycloptic glare. The rest of the party were all down on their faces too and fortunately they avoided the patrol.
As they hurried onward to the nearest catapult, now taking form out of the darkness, none of them looked downward onto the ground in front of them, their eyes drawn to the Ballista. For Eclipse especially this turned out to be a potentially fatal mistake. A small click sounded and Lothor froze, his senses were heightened and he looked round to see Eclipse frozen to the spot, a look of shock plastered on his features.
Lothor looked at him sympathetically but knew he could not help the young half-elf. Nevertheless he drew his sword and backed further away from the trap, cautiously looking around him suspecting more lethal devices nearby, it may have been cowardly but there was no use losing his life in the process.
The party had gathered at the appointed time and location. Cor set the marching order and as in the past Ulthok took the lead. The group pasted through the wall and into the no man’s land. The ground was littered with rocks and debris from the barrage of the enemy. The mage seldom looked back to see if the party were following in his footsteps. Moving cautiously the team encountered a patrol of Orcs lead by one those floating eyes. They all dropped to blend with the debris. After the patrol passed Ulthok signaled the team forward. The “click” from behind drove through the mage like an arrow, someone had not been following in the footsteps. Looking back he saw the new party member Eclipse standing stone still. “Peri, the new one has tripped a trap, I need to go see if it can be disarmed.” As he turned he saw a small Kobald heading toward the HalfElf.
“Ohno, did he see her change?” With that Ulthok willed spirit into his ring and vanished. Scrambling over the rock and stones to avoid any more trips the thief made his way back to the trapped man with the knocked bow. From a few feet away in his hiding place, he whispered out, “That’s Valene coming …stay still.”
There wasn’t room for both of halflings to search the ground around Eclipse so as Valene checked the trap, Ulthok searched for more, no need going from the frying pan into the fire by stepping in another.
The Halfling cleric showed her nimble skills as she quickly scanned the trap, pulling out her newly acquired tools she deftly attempted to disarm the trap under the Rangers foot. Waiting to see if the trap was disabled Ulthok looked back toward rest of party, turning his head there perched on where his shoulder would be was a shiny tiny dragon. “Peri…we need to work on this vanishing thing.”
Sirène peered at Rayne curiously. She had barely spoken to her at all in the weeks they had travelled together, beyond the odd platitude or muttered curse at her fellow elf’s impulsiveness in battle (which angered Sirène even though it was a mirror of her own). In all that time she had received even less back in the way of conversation. Sirène had come to look upon Rayne’s reticence with a mixture of pity and indifference, concluding that her insularity was a product of having grown up among the humans of Shanna’Tara.
But then, suddenly and unexpectedly, as they sat waiting for orders amidst the great and not-so-great of Craggon Core, Rayne unburdened herself. She spoke of her childhood, her training, her sworn service to the human Kings and Queens of the realm in which she was born.
Sirène’s response was an embarrassed cough. Such truths were rarely shared with new acquaintances in E’Loth Lo’Rian, but confined to lovers, family and the closest of friends.
“I … I welcome your honesty Rayne. Saesa omentien lle. … Perhaps, one day, I can take you to see the mallorns of E’Loth Lo’Rian. You’ll enjoy it I think.”
[back to the present…]
”Rhaich!” Sirène cursed under her breath. She had instinctively dropped to her knees as the loud ‘click’ reverberated through the still night, muddying the bottoms of her grey leggings. Through her infravision she could see Eclipse – the oddly named elf that Cor had recruited into the party – drop to his knees and others either go to his aid or backing away further into the night.
But nothing happened. Nothing at least that she could see.
“Be careful,” Sirène hissed in warning. “It’s unlikely to be the only trap out there.”
[Saesa omentien lle = It’s a pleasure to know you.
The trip has been going well, too well in fact. Patrols passed them by and the party wasvmaking good time. Then as it always does, somethng went wrong. The beats of drums suddely filled the air as a trap was tripped. Quickly the "scouts" went to work trying to figure it out, one party member simply vanished and another became a kobold. Before things got too far out of hand Cor whispered just loud enough for all to hear. "Donna go off on your own, this is nae likely ta be the only trap. Plus we donna want ta confuse enemy with friend in the dark. Keep a watch until they get this trap sorted out."
The LONG Awaited Return of Everyones Favorite Fairy Dragon
Peri nuzzled Ulthok's cheek nervously as they entered the enemy's grounds. She always grew nervous when those she cared about were put in danger. Hopefully nothing would go wrong. If they could just get through here they would all be fine. That could happen right? Nothing bad happens just a nice leisurely walk through the camp and....*click*...thats not good. She looked down at Ulthok's feet, it wasnt us. She sighed relieved as her eyes searched for Valene. Where is Valene? Her wings started to flutter nerviously. She quickly looked over at Ulthok who explained it was the new ranger who tripped the trap.
Still not good, but it was better than one of them. She glanced nervously back over at Eclipse. The Ranger was planning every way to try to escape. Good thing Ulthok was on his way to help disarm it.
Her wings flitted nervously as she watched the Ranger. She was so enthralled with the situation she didnt even notice Ulthok turn invisble.
"Peri.... we have to work on this vanishing thing." Oh! She smacked her face softly with her claws... she forgot some can turn invisible just like she can. With a flick of her wrist she went invisble as well, hoping no one saw her blunder.
"Sorry... a bit worried is all, my apologies, Dear Ulthok," she told him telepathically as she kissed his cheek softly... atleast she thinks it was his cheek.
With herself hidden from sight, She turned her attention back to the Ranger and his dilemma.
Posted on 2013-01-27 at 19:25:27.
Edited on 2013-01-27 at 19:27:49 by VivianEverBloom
The party begin to move once more when suddenly a click was heard from under the shoe of Eclipse. In the still of the night the party all as one froze the click sounding as if a loud drum and told of a bad situation turned worse
And just like that one of the newest party members found out what being a part of this group was all about. The first of the two ‘trap specialists’ to move was the Halfling turned Kobold Valene. Moving quickly she was by the Elf Rangers side and checking it out and liked what she saw. Eclipse had been lucky, stepping on a crude mechanical trap instead of a magical one. With careful skill and the use of her new tool kit the trap was disarmed and Eclipse free to move once more. As Valene moved back to her spot he thought for a moment her hair less Kobold body looked green, then realized it was only a trick of the light.
Then single file they moved past the enemy perimeter and found themselves inside the enemy lines. Another thirty minutes of dodging sentries and kobold working parties. The consent presance of Kobolds brought a suggestion from Sorin of using Valene in her Kobold disguise as a prisoner guard to move the party through the camp quicker. This idea quickly discarded by Cor in a low Dwarf growl as too unbelievable, the party found themselves upon a slight knoll gazing at their target below.
In a nice formation stood 5 ballista for the moment the huge wooden machines and the crew at rest. Around and above this large encampment the party could see a large slightly glowing dome of magical energy protecting the ballista within. Looking closer Rayne was the first to spot the only door like opening to get at the huge catapults themselves to the domes rear. With it clear to the ten person raider team that to get inside was through that opening, the question now was how.
The party could see that the ballista themselves were formed up three to the front and the other two behind them each has enough distance between them to be pulled back and released. A medium number of tents close to each weapon could only mean more enemy bodies possibly each weapons crew. On top of all this by each of the five ballista lay two sleeping Hill Giants, the pullers, for a total of ten Giants within and an unknown number of other creatures with them.
With it clear to the ten person raider team that to get inside was through that opening to the domes rear. The question now was how to get in, how to take out the crew and defending guards, and how to destroy the five weapons of mass destruction without being killed, and return behind the fortress walls before morning.
(DM OOC: Ok there you have it your target lies before you, I will get you a map up this week. Also my next post will be on Sunday February 10th as I will be in Louisiana this coming weekend the 1st through 4th to visit with a friend and watch the Super Bowl. Good Luck.)
Posted on 2013-01-28 at 05:36:37.
Edited on 2013-01-28 at 05:45:37 by TannTalas
Lothors heart hadn't stopped racing, there seemed to be an endless amount of adrenaline pumping through his veins. One minute Kobold working parties would cross their path and the next his face was pressed into the muddy ground as one of the regulated and organised patrols of the Orc sentries went past. He was forever looking behind his back, worried a patrol was about to appear in the foggy darkness. Whenever he wasn't looking behind his eyes constantly scanned the ground before him searching for any traps lurking underfoot.
By the time they reached the five ballistas he was mentally exhausted, but he could not rest, one of the party had to figure out a way in to the blue, glimmering shield that covered the area where the ballista's lay. Valenes keen eyes spotted the entry point and that immediately worried at Lothor it was an almost impossible task to even get to the doorway let alone deal with the creatures inside, most noticeably the ten sleeping Hill Giants.
Most of the creatures on sentry duty or patrolling the outside of the domes perimeter appeared to be Kobolds. This set his mind to thinking. His eyes flickered at Valene, studying her disguise, perhaps it was good enough, perhaps not. Time would tell.
Lothor, gaining confidence through not being the newest member of the small party, caught Cor's eyes and began to suggest his plan. “The main force that we face, both in and out of this magical dome, seem to be Kobold.” He paused as if summoning more courage. “Valene here is also, for what they know at least, a Kobold. If she were to cause a... distraction we could then sneak around the back and enter through the rear door to set about the catapults.” His gaze switched to Valene. “It is a lot of a risk for you Valene so should we agree on this you should, naturally, have the right to decline”
With his plan suggested Lothor stepped back, as if suggesting the opinions of the others. In that moment he realised what it was to be a leader and the immense pressure Cor must be under on an almost daily basis. Suggesting a plan is one thing, but deciding on one was far tougher.
Eclipse would make his way away from the trap, he would think to himself as he made sure to not get caught in the same trap twice...
"Well that could have gone worse..."
He follows the party keeping a close eye on his surroundings as he stuck to the shadows and bushes of the field to hide his presence. A group of ten would be hard to make a clean getaway with.
As they reached the spot where they could see the ballista, he would completely still his breath so he couldn't be heard.
He wuld carefully examin the enemy emplacement below, carefully taking in every detail. Things like weapon types, time of the day, visual ranges and anything that might seem useless but really isnt. He would take this all in and start to process the info into useable formats.
He turns to the porty talking quietly so as to not raise the alarm on there location....
"Do we have any kind of way to make explosions? Preferably time-delayed ones? If so, only those necessary can sneak in under the guise of a small distraction, plant some delayed explosives, magical or otherwise, and get out quietly and be well on our way back to the fortress because when those ballista are destroyed those emplacements are going to get swamped with enemy forces, and with only ten of us against such a large camp... It may not fare well for us."
As the group finally made its way to the ballistas, the incredible odds against them were made clear. A large protective magic dome shielded the seige engines and there were many enemies scattered about. Plans were quickly suggested and Cor thought about them. "Perhaps a wee bit a patience is needed. We can see the way in but not what happens when they fire. As suggested, the shield might go down for a moment to let the rocks out. That wold be helpful. I believe we have a possible way in as our druid can turn into a small creature and sneak in. Perhaps even dispel the magic around the engines. Course our mages could try the same. I think we nae have any delayed explosives. Perhaps invisibility would get us to the door but we would go visible agin when we enter. Anyone else have an idea?"
Posted on 2013-01-29 at 02:44:41.
Edited on 2013-01-29 at 16:27:10 by Keeper of Dragons