posted Mar 13, 2021, 10:42 AM by Stephen Pliska-Matyshak   [ updated Mar 28, 2021, 12:57 PM ]

Propyltina 23rd, Year Two of the Reign of High King Ran

The group makes their way towards the river gorge and camps in a hollow in the gorge after a day's travel. Then, they follow the gorge uphill the next day. After a long day's travel, they arrive in a village that seems completely abandoned.
Fennimore: Where is everyone?
Rael Octavius: Odd, that.
Perri Elastime: Is this one of your group's camp spots, Colborn?
Fennimore looks into the first cottage.
Fennimore: Hello? Anybody home?
Ingimarr: This is Realm's Wound. Where is everyone?
They search the area along the river and up to a mine. There is a huge, bloody smear on the rock face next to the mine's entrance. There is a mutilated body lying behind an ore cart nearby.
The body has been shredded by something with large, nasty claws.
Perri Elastime looks at the blood smear.
Perri Elastime guesses the blood smear is from the body, made when it was thrown against the rock face by whatever mauled it.
Perri Elastime: I'd say something big threw the body against the wall.
Rael Octavius: Something nasty was around here. I wonder if they retreated into the mine?
Fennimore: The nasty or the villagers?
Rael Octavius: The villagers.
Rael Octavius: I do not think a monster would bother closing the doors.
Perri Elastime: I wonder if doors could stop it.
Perri Elastime checks the door to the mine, pulling to try and open it.
Rael Octavius: There are a couple of big gouges on the doors.
The doors to the mine are locked tight.
Fennimore: Let's see if I can jimmy the lock.
Fennimore can't get the doors to budge even after unlocking them. They seem to be barred from the inside.
Fennimore: I opened the latch, but the doors seem to be barricaded or barred on the inside.
Fennimore: Should we knock?
Perri Elastime: It is worth trying.
Rael Octavius: Sure. The monster seems to be gone.
Fennimore uses the hilt of his dagger to knock and calls out.
Perri Elastime looks around for a monster.
Fennimore: Hello? Anybody inside the mine? It's safe to come out again.
Fennimore listens at the door for movement inside.
A very muffled voice is barely audible through the doors.
A voice: Save yourselves! Flee!
Fennimore: There's someone inside.
Fennimore (shouting through the door): What attacked you?
A voice: A troll! There is a troll!
Rael Octavius looks for tracks around the vicinity.
Fennimore: A troll? Does anybody see a troll?
Rael Octavius: Tracks.
Rael Octavius: They lead back into the village.
Perri Elastime: We should follow them.
Fennimore (shouting through the door): Stay inside. We'll hunt down the troll.
Perri Elastime draws Dulguachared.
Fennimore: What do you think? House by house search? I don't want to get too spread out.
Rael Octavius: Sounds like a plan.
Perri Elastime: Rael, can you follow the tracks?
Rael Octavius: They wander around but lead to the south for the most part.
Fennimore: I'll take point.
Perri Elastime: I guess we check all of the buildings.
Perri Elastime: Lead the way, Fenn.
Fennimore looks for troll tracks on the path.
Perri Elastime listens.
Fennimore sees crisscrossing tracks of a troll all over the place.
Fennimore tries to open the gate.
Fennimore listens at the door of the cottage he approaches.
Perri Elastime notices that there are no troll tracks within the garden.
Fennimore hears nothing.
Fennimore opens the door.
Perri Elastime: I don't see any troll tracks within the wall here.
Fennimore looks inside for signs of a tussle.
The inside of the cottage looks tidy.
Fennimore: No sign of a troll inside. Let's try the next house.
Fennimore opens the door to a shed.
Fennimore looks inside the shed.
This shed holds crates and sacks.
Fennimore: Nothing here.
Rael Octavius: On to the next house?
Fennimore: Yep, I'm going out the side gate.
Fennimore opens the next gate.
Fennimore: Oh, a garden!
Fennimore looks to see what's growing.
A grumbly voice [Giant]: Elf?
Rael Octavius: That does not sound good.
Fennimore: It sounds like he has a thorn in his paw.
Fennimore: If we pull it out, will he be our friend?
Fennimore looks for somewhere to hide in the garden.
Rael Octavius (pointing south): Um, troll.
Ice Troll [Giant]: ELF!
Rael Octavius: It is a big, white troll.
Fennimore: Where?
Rael Octavius: On the other side of the house you are near.
Ingimarr moves toward the house and readies his battleaxe.
Perri begins a bladesong and moves towards the road along the garden wall and the house, ready for something to come around the corner.
Colborn moves forward, watching the troll as he advances.
Ice Troll moves up to the corner of the house.
Ice Troll [Giant]: There are elves!
Fennimore moves up behind Perri, then dashes across the path of the troll and tries to hide behind a tree.
Rael Octavius moves up launches four fiery rays at the troll.
Rael Octavius then ducks behind a tree.
Ingimarr charges the troll and attacks, hacking the now-burning troll with his battleaxe.
Frigid air from the troll assaults Perri.
Perri scrambles up the vine-covered house and leaps down behind the troll.
Perri forms a blade from the shadows and strikes the troll.
Colborn races forward and strikes at the troll with his battleaxe.
Ice Troll takes a bite out of Ingimarr.
Ice Troll rakes a claw at Colborn, nearly eviscerating him. Colborn falls.
Ice Troll swipes its other claw at Perri, but she blocks the blow.
Fennimore analyzes the situation and then moves around Ingimarr and jabs the troll with his rapier.
Fennimore: Rael, the boys need some healing quickly.
Fennimore: Some fire would be nice, too.
Rael Octavius moves into view of the troll again, and he launches three rays of fire this time, keeping the troll burning.
Ingimarr stikes at the troll again.
Cold overwhelms Ingimarr, who falls frozen to the ground. The aura from the troll also bites into Perri.
Perri thrusts her shadowy blade into the troll again, which finally falls burning to the ground.
Perri Elastime checks Colburn.
Fennimore checks the troll for treasure.
Fennimore: Let's get it away from the house and burn it; make sure it stays dead.
Fennimore finds a sack of gold.
Fennimore sheds the sacks of coins from the troll and tries to drag its corpse onto the path.
The troll begins to melt.
Rael Octavius moves over to Colborn and gives him some healing, see that he is still breathing.
Rael Octavius: Save your potions, Perri.
Perri Elastime: What about Ingimarr?
Rael Octavius moves over to check on Ingimarr.
Rael Octavius: Sorry. Ingimarr is beyond my help.
Fennimore: He fought valiantly. May he have redeemed himself and earned his lasting reward.
Colborn: He died with honor.
Rael Octavius: Both of you, nearly so.
Colborn stands.
Fennimore: We need you to be more careful. We need your guidance as we move into the mountains.
Perri Elastime: Do you think there is more than one troll?
Fennimore looks around.
Fennimore: I hope not. That one nearly got the better of us.
Rael Octavius: It is hard to tell. There are so many tracks.
Perri Elastime: We should check the rest of the buildings.
Fennimore: Or, just make a racket and see if it comes to us?
The group moves around the village, checking builds that all appear to be abandoned.
Fennimore: Colburn, how should we treat Ingimarr's remains?
Colborn: He should be burned on a pyre.
Fennimore: Fitting. He'll never be cold again.
Rael Octavius: It seems the villagers escaped into the mine.
Fennimore: Let's see if we can entice them to come out.
Perri Elastime: Let's go back to the mine and tell them the troll is dead.
Fennimore grabs the troll loot.
Perri Elastime walks to the mine entrance.
Colborn lops the troll's head off with his battleaxe.
Fennimore: Ding dong the troll is dead, the troll is dead.
Colborn: Proof.
Fennimore: If there is anything left of the troll, we should burn it too.
The group arrives back at the mine. The doors are still sealed.
Perri Elastime bangs on the door.
Rael Octavius: It is dead, or we would be fighting it again.
Rael Octavius: Hello, villagers of Realm's Wound! We have vanquished the troll.
Colborn: Yes! I hold its very head. Come and see.
Perri Elastime: It really is a very gruesome sight.
There is a muffled shout from within the mine. After a few moments, you can hear the bar being lifted to allow the doors to be opened.
Fennimore: Who wants to see the grisly trophy!
The doors slowly open, revealing a large group of villagers squinting in the bright sun.
Fennimore: Come out, come out. It's safe to come out.
A large but aged man steps from among the group.
Perri Elastime: Are you all okay?
Wilhelm: Thank you, brave ones. We are in your debt.
Fennimore thinks, "I like to hear that."
Wilhelm: I am Wilhelm, the village elder.
Rael Octavius: Rael Octavius at your service.
Perri Elastime: I am Perri.
Fennimore: I am Fennimore.
Rael Octavius: And this is Colborn, a member of Bjorg's clan to the south.
Fennimore: We are on a mission from High King Ran.
Perri Elastime: We were quite concerned about finding the village empty.
Wilhelm: The High King of "The City," you say?
Fennimore nods.
Rael Octavius: Yes, elder.
Wilhelm: Come, come. This is no place to have a conversation. We shall talk in the tavern.
Perri Elastime smiles.
Fennimore: Oh, you have a tavern? Come on, Colburn, let's get a little taste of civilization.
Wilhelm steps into the light and begins to make his way into the village.
The rest of the villagers begin to exit the mine, surveying as they assess the damage the troll did.
Rael Octavius: Elder, we saw only one victim of the troll before we found it. You are very fortunate.
Perri Elastime: We have a companion that did not survive the fight with the troll. He died bravely and fought with honor.
Fennimore: Colburn tells us it is customary for a funeral pyre. Can you help us arrange the rites?
Wilhelm: Ah, Albrecht. He nearly made it to the mine. We also lost Duretta and Thoman, sadly.
Colborn: My clansman, Ingimarr, will need a funeral pyre.
Wilhelm: Ingimarr? Of Hjotr's raiding party?
Colborn looks down at the ground.
Colborn: Yes.
Fennimore looks between them to see what is going on?
Wilhelm: He met his end fighting for us?
Colborn: He did.
Perri Elastime: Ingimarr was working on reclaiming his honor.
Fennimore: Perhaps you should know that Hjotr is no more.
Wilhelm: And Hjotr? Where is that bastard?
Perri Elastime: He has met his end.
Wilhelm: Good. Some justice, then.
The group arrives at a tavern.
Fennimore: Hjotr was not welcome here?
Wilhelm: Enough of death and retribution.
Wilhelm enters the tavern.
Perri Elastime: Perhaps a bite of food and a swallow or two of ale?
Rael Octavius follows the elder.
Fennimore: Sounds like a great idea.
Perri Elastime enters the tavern.
Fennimore: C'mon, Colburn.
Fennimore enters the tavern.
Colborn follows the others into the tavern.
Wilhelm goes behind the bar and sets enough tankards on it for everyone. He then turns to an untapped keg bound in gold-colored metal straps and taps it.
Wilhelm: This is an occasion for Dwarven Ale.
Fennimore: Looks like some top-shelf ale.
Perri Elastime: I haven't had Dwarven Ale before.
Fennimore: Not too many dwarves in "The City."
Perri Elastime: Nor in Between.
Several other villagers enter the tavern and begin busying themselves with getting it ready to serve the community again.
Wilhelm fills the tankards and sets them back on the bar.
Rael Octavius retrieves a tankard.
Perri Elastime takes a tankard.
Fennimore fetches his tankard and takes a sip, leaving a foam mustache on his upper lip.
Wilhelm: Drink slowly. Dwarven ale is like drinking a feast.
Fennimore: I could drink to that.
Fennimore: The last few weeks have been hard traveling.
Perri Elastime takes a second tankard and hands it to Colborn.
Wilhelm takes a tankard and has a seat at a long table in the middle of the tavern.
Colborn nods and accepts the tankard from Perri.
Fennimore: After you, Miss Perri. Ready to play the Ambassador?
Perri Elastime sips the ale, trying hard not to drink it all down.
Rael Octavius joins the elder at the table.
Perri Elastime: I can but try.
Perri Elastime sits down at the table.
Wilhelm: So you are on a quest for High King Ran?
Fennimore observes the elder closely as he interacts with Perri and Rael.
Rael Octavius: That, we are.
Wilhelm: Does he have you out here looking for that lost artifact from the great battle, then?
Perri Elastime: We are looking for ways to ameliorate the drought plaguing the plains.
Rael Octavius raises his eyebrows.
Fennimore sips his ale.
Perri Elastime: It really is no secret.
Perri Elastime raises her eyebrows.
Rael Octavius: As Perri stated, we are surveying the drought with the barbarians to determine a means of their survival.
Perri Elastime: As the ice is growing down the mountains, we thought to investigate the water seclusion.
Wilhelm: Ah, you would be looking for the bheur hag.
Perri Elastime drinks some ale.
Fennimore: Bheur hag? What is that?
Perri Elastime has heard of bheur hags. They are from the Feywild.
Wilhelm: A hag. And this one is messing with the weather.
Perri Elastime: Those are from the Feywild, I believe.
Wilhelm: The Feywild? That explains the sprites.
Perri Elastime: Sprites? What sprites?
Wilhelm: The sprites that frost everything over when the sun vanishes from the sky.
Perri Elastime: Oh!
Perri Elastime looks at Fennimore.
Fennimore: Um, when's the next dark day expected?
Perri Elastime: I have completely lost track of the calendar.
Wilhelm: No idea. No one knows how to predict Beleshtash's movements.
Perri Elastime: The glaciers seem to be advancing unusually fast.
Wilhelm: It has been over a phase already since it was dark. It could be tomorrow or another week from now.
Fennimore listens to the elder and determines that he is utterly and absolutely truthful.
Wilhelm: Drink up, drink up. Enough chewing the fat for now.
Fennimore drains his tankard.
Perri Elastime finishes her tankard.