Friday, October 30, 2015

Blade of Vengeance, Part 3

Days 4-9:
  • Erystelle has an enormous breakfast in the hobbit village of Oakendale, and then leaves on the trail north. 
  • Late in the afternoon, E. comes to a bridge crossing a river; buzzing around the bridge are 4 giant flies that wing to the attack with clashing mandibles. E. cuts them down with swordplay and the help of the horse and bobcat companions. After the bridge the is a 4-way intersection; remembering great uncle Druider's directions, E. turns northeast and then makes camp.
  • Overnight E. is woken by a wail from the bobcats; a group of 5 giant ferrets have infiltrated te camp, about to attack the sleeping Erystelle, while other try to make off with food and saddlebags. E. jumps up and fends them off with more expert swordplay. However, with the night's sleep interrupted, E. cannot regain spells in the morning.
  • A league further up the trail, E. finds the hermit's cave, but it has been invaded, its contents burned and smoking. Looking through the remnants, E. finds a half-charred book with the legend of Galannor Nightflame (familiar from great uncle's story), and a final, half-burned page (see below). E. notices that the last part aligns with the shargugh's rhyme; likely the first part is an accompanying place or ceremony? E. reflects on any memory of "celestial pillars" but cannot recall any. Spends an hour searching and calling around the cave for the hermit but finds no trace -- other than obvious booted tracks of armed humanoids traveling northeast.
  • Travels another league northeast and hears shouting in goblinoid. Casting wizard eye, spies on the camp ahead; an ogre roar at a score of cowering hobgoblins. E. casts invisibility and creeps to where they can be heard. A captive has escaped and the hobgoblins are receiving due punishment. E. returns to the hermit's cave and spends another hour searching but finds nothing. Nearing the end of the day, E. rides south a league and makes camp.
  • Overnight, another pack of the many giant ferrets in the area attacks. E. wins again, but again cannot recover any spells in the morning.
  • Returning to the 4-way intersection north of the river bridge; an armed centaur blocks the path and declares that none may pass without accepting the challenge of a joust (without magic, of course). E. asks: "Have you seen the hermit?" The centaur: "I no nothing of any hermit." E.: "Then you are no use to me!" and lets loose with a lightning bolt. The centaur dodges aside, only partly scorched, and makes a ferocious charge, which E. barely turns by dint of magic armor. E. attacks with sword but fumbles (natural 1 & failed save) -- slips off out of the saddle and is stunned! Cursing at the evils of magic, the centaur jumps repeatedly on E.'s head seeking to stave it in -- one blow is critical for triple damage. But E.'s animal companions fend it off, and when Erystelle rises again, the bobcats pull down the centaur's hind section and E. finishes it by sword.
  • Amazed and bearing many injuries, E. returns to the hermit's cave seeking shelter to rest and recover for a few days if need be; horribly finds the field and the nearby gardens entirely scorched down to the smoking soil, trees surrounding the clearing burned to cinders. Retreats a league into the trackless woods and finds fallen trees for shelter, as the group tries to lick its wounds. Attacked by stirges. Overnight a grizzly bear stumbles into the camp and the group attack and kill it (no spells again). Try to rest the next day and the bear's mate now stumbles into the camp; this time E. stays dozing while the animals chase it off. Finally recovers spells and hit points by resting another night.
  • Departing, E. returns to the 4-way path and turns north. A league north the path forks again, north and northwest; takes the northwest branch. Two leagues northwest, then 2 leagues north, and they find the human village of Scrubton, entirely burned to ash cinders. The people nothing but charred skeletons. How long? At least a few weeks gone. E. tries to search the ashes for clues or books, but finds nothing.
  • Near the end of the day, they travel a league north of the burned village. Here the trees begin to thin out and the land rises into hills northward; thick coils of mist spill out of the hills and the group camps near the edge of the trees. In the morning the foggy mist does not rise; vision is limited and enemies could be near without knowing. E. returns south and takes a northeast trail out of the village; but again the tries thin out and the misty hills present themselves. A league further into the hills and 5 hobgoblins appear and attack. One slips, but another scores a critical hit; the roll 89%, indicating a serious abdominal injury that will reduce carrying capacity and movement and would not heal naturally. E. casts sleep on the hobgoblins and then pulls out the last potion of healing and drinks it so as to cure the ailment. 
  • Inferring that the misty hills are teeming and blocked by armed hobgoblins, Erystelle retreats back west and south, finally making camp some three leagues south of the ruined village of Scrubton. Frustrated and feeling alone, E. hopes to reflect and meditate on some solution by morning. 
Burned page
The burned page.

4 comments:

  1. Oh dear! Sounds like Erystelle is really having trouble making any progress - or even getting a good night's sleep! That's not even getting into the matter of all the resources consumed fruitlessly, especially those healing potions...

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  2. Wow, sounds exciting. I hope she makes it. The lamp may have helped.

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