The last few
days weeks have been interesting. Let’s see. We started off by going into Dagwood Forest to try and figure out a number of things, all greenskin related. After encountering a few patrols, we came out of there with some valuable information, and an unknown number of the green-tinged bastards at our tails. Thankfully we were able to cover our tracks. While we did not learn anything about the main encampment that might or might not have been there (or whatever it is that they are guarding, by Bronwyn’s reasoning), we do now know that a wide variety of them are assembled together, that they have tactics and patrol the areas they settle in with overlapping patrol routes, each within 10 to 15 minutes of each other at the very least. That did not give us any clue as to how many of them were chasing us (although from the whimpers emanating from Bronwyn’s cousin, one might just assume too many for comfort and just go with that). We spent the night in Haberhof’s temple to Zahara. only to be woken early in the morning by the cleaver trap I had set to warn us of any intruders. Of course, said clever trap involved us being woken by blaring church bells, but … I’m just a feline. And it worked. Brother Gunther opened the temple door and was immediately greeted by our blades, which we then promptly sheathed. After exchanging information with him, and him giving Graldor permission to “borrow” some of Sister Gretchen’s extended library (which he took upon himself to dig up) we set off back to Rathreigh, with the avowed goal of informing Alex and Bishop Balk, and trying to gather more information on the guardians of Brandwin Rolf, the cult that our dear brother Anthon seems to hate with such passion. Along the way we found tracks, seemingly of greenskins, going along the forest towards Forest’s Edge. As we felt that it wouldn’t be very polite to let any amount of greenskins destroy that farming community, we followed the tracks, hoping to catch up with them. We didn’t but we did notice that once they were about three to four hours into the cover of the forest, the one greenskin that was mounted on a horse stepped down and changed … into something that has pawprints resembling those that Scylla left that day a month ago. Except smaller. Those prints were only about three to four hands wide. Still, not wanting to confront anything that can change into something that has the same paw shape as a green dragon, we quickly galloped out of the forest. Oh and before I forget, Bronwyn, if you somehow manage to read this far, I will give you ten sovereigns. If you don’t, well , that’s what you get for not wanting to read a self-aggrandizing account of those events that happened while you were busy staring into space. Now where was I?
We got to Forest’s Edge, where me and cousin Ed left our weapons behind before going into Rathreigh itself. There, while acceding to his wish to go “shopping”, we managed to find ourselves accepting an offer from Captain Rooke, commander of a gnomish airship. And by we, I mean it was Graldor who all but yelled “YES” when the captain mentioned something about how he won a dwarven mine in three successive games of chance and how the dwarves did not want to relinquish what was no longer theirs to claim. Minutes after accepting, the captain did manage to produce a deed, which Graldor confirmed as being legitimate. So before I could regain my senses and accomplish those things I had set to do we set off in the gnome’s airship towards Forest’s edge to recover our friends/tag-along freelancers and our equipment. But I get ahead of myself. What is an airship you might ask. And you would be right to ask as few places I have been to (that I remember) have access to flight and the technologies involved in achieving flight, be those magical, mundane or relying on the toil of beasts. To get to a gnomish airship you must first take a staircase going up a narrow tower. This tower, after reaching a certain height has half-arches sprouting off of it which extend into the air at regular intervals. These arches are where an airship would dock. The airship itself looks very much like a ship, except that it does not have any masts. In their stead is a giant bladder filled to bursting with something that holds the rest of the ship, which is firmly attached to this bladder, and itself aloft. Now imagine if you will that you are a farmer; you’ve been a farmer all of your life. And all of a sudden, on a bright spring day a half-boat, half bladder contraption comes flying over you with some sort of growling noise. That was the sight which greeted the denizens of Forest’s Edge that same day as we went to retrieve our belongings. While the gnomes were figuring a way to harness our horses onto their ship, I was informed by a rather embarrassed brother Anthon that while he was admiring the sword of the four winds, he managed to split the blade in two. While he was furiously apologetic about the matter, I was busy racking my brains. Beyond the fact that the sword was a gift from a divine being, and beautiful piece of artwork, it was also a great asset in our arsenal, saving myself and Lothar from a nasty chill. And this is probably one of the wost puns I have ever written. I blame the trauma of being led by the nose by an asocial asthmatic and the blade being split in two. Vertically. Yes, I wonder exactly what it is that happened during this admiration of the blade. Regardless, Graldor once again provided us with a solution. It turns out that our asthmatic friend/employee/former employee knew almost everything there is to know about the sword, and the other three copies for that matter. To reforge this one anew, we would have to make a detour north, towards Hollowdale. The gnomes, caring deeply for our combat effectiveness , immediately set sail for Hollowdale once we had loaded all of our belongings and appraised them of the situation. After a two day trip north during which I was able to check on my investment in Ferry, and we were able to spot a tower emanating from the depths of Mistwall Lake we arrived on the outskirts of Hollowdale, where we set down on foot; me, Brother Anthone, Graldor, and Captain Rooke. Hollowdale is a small logging community that time, easy road access and small luxuries have all forgotten about. They do have Dagwood Ale though, so I suppose things could be worse. There we found the being who would undo the damage done to the sword; the owner of “The Lucky Horseshoe” Tyrrox Gyr. A centaur of considerable skill in the smithy, he immediately set to repairing the blade, provided that I (and a volunteering Brother Anthone) agreed to an act of contrition to be named later. Now, I hate favors to be named later, but when you are looking at the broken gift of a goddess who has a bit of a temper held by a rather muscular centaur … well … You pick the lesser pain. As I did. The smithmaster took two days to repair and reconsecrate the blade (apparently the blade will split in half like it did if it is held by someone who doesn’t worship Aveline or someone who isn’t at least part-fey. I am part-fey?) During that time I spent some time talking with the nearby druid coven. Why would a self-respecting person such as myself do that? Simple. Graldor mentioned that the sword is rumored to achieve even greater power if exposed to certain, naturally occurring conditions, and if the owner prays to Aveline with faith in his or her heart. Now. I do not dispute the existence of the Gods. And in this case I certainly do not dispute her power. So, knowing that she not only exists but could probably turn me into some form of flora should she get peeved at me, do I really need to “pray”? Couldn’t I just … ask her? Politely? Praying would be a little difficult, as I do not have any idea how. Not to mention that I am hardly the most religious person to ever walk the Blind Eternities. If I did have faith in a god or pantheon, I would say that it is a good thing that I have forgotten who they are, for I would be blaspheming by now. For any god that allows any follower to suffer as I have is certainly an uncaring god. And uncaring gods certainly do not require devotion.
Thus after a long series of theological discussions with the druids, it became apparent that direct communication was indeed acceptable. Sword in hand, we flew down to the Kingdom of Ungar to retake the mine for our gnomish employer. Along the way we got to see spires where Blue dragons roost (apparently those are just as bad as the green variety in Dagwood. I wonder if they have a matriarch or patriarch of the same size as Scylla), and we got to see a demonstration of gnomish “guns” as they call the steel sticks they wield. They seem rather familiar actually. Upon arriving at the mine, we were not shot at. In fact, after landing, Bronwyn and Brother Ant were quite engaged in a fairly civil discussion with the dwarves, of which I understood absolutely nothing. But apparently, Captain Rooke lied to us. The mine did not belong to him. In fact, he had lost all attempts to win it in games of chance. Bronwyn, always quick witted, noticed the possible convergence of interests at work; The dwarves owned the mine, and knew how to properly mine mithral (yes, the ore mined here was mithral). But they had no way to bring their ore to the nearest dwarven kathal (or city as I am told this term means in their language). The gnomes knew absolutely nothing of mithral mining. Or just mining. But they did have an airship. Thus a delegation of dwarves was sent aboard Rooke’s airship and we set off to the nearby kathal of Durth-Arth-Agol to discuss the specifics of a contract which would profit both parties involved. That night, as we let the gnomes celebrate their newfound contract, Rooke and some of his crew manages to get into an animated conversation with a man I immediately recognized as Vladic of Heldenfeld; cleric of Salah by virtue of his family being besotted with the god, he managed to turn his natural penchant for exploration and all things not entirely legal into a career retrieving artifacts for the One Incredibly Stuck-Up Church of Salah. While not having had any business dealings with him in my time in Heldenfeld, I had it on good account that he was not like your typical cleric of Salah, willing to perhaps stretch the rules for the greater good. I approached him, as I was intrigued in what our good captain had been telling him. To sum up a long conversation, he was looking for adventurers of the right caliber to help him find some abandoned artifacts; To do so, he invited us to come and compete in an arena fight in the nearby dwarven kathal of Tirgiz-Jitur. Should we prove ourselves competent enough to survive the arena fight, he would hire us to find this (or these) artifacts.
I've named a couple places in your world Jill.
December 22, 2011 19:37
The last few
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