Sunday, 27 September 2015

Predator and Prey

June 20–21, 3430, Age of Kings

Grabby managed to get close enough to the entrance of the hidden tunnel to hear Ander's response when he called out for him. Ander and Grabby then hid in the narrow passageway and waited for their companions, not daring to call out and reveal their position.

Meanwhile, Broak was (rather foolishly) trying to make it past the dragon to get back to the camp site to reunite with his chainmail as Audrey blindly ran through the darkened forest, avoiding goblins, and more importantly, the angry, acid-breathing dragon. She managed to find a large tree to hide next to as she heard the dragon descend upon an unfortunate goblin—one that happened to be close to the hole. Ander and Grabby hid silently as they heard the dragon tearing the goblin apart just yards away from the entrance to the hole.

By this time Broak had managed to grab his armour and made his way back into the forest, avoiding the dragon's path. As he was doing this, another goblin fleeing the dragon had doubled back to the camp, only to have the dragon come crashing down upon it. The dragon began investigating the campsite, rooting through the things the party had abandoned, and destroying some of their wolf pelts in the process. Both Audrey and Broak were too scared to make move, but knew they had to find the hole where Ander had fallen, but not entirely sure of its exact location.

Feeling pressured to move, knowing the dragon would likely eventually find her, Audrey decided to light a torch and drop it at the base of the tree where she was hiding and make a run for it, hoping the fire would draw the dragon's attention. She ran towards the area of the hole, tripping and stumbling her way through the forest as the dragon turned its attention toward the fire.

Once Audrey was close enough to the hole, she managed to find Ander and squeeze herself into the narrow tunnel with Grabby. Periodically Ander would peek out to look for their dwarven friend, still unsure of his location, having last seen him at the camp site gathering his armour.

Unable to find anything, the dragon took to the air and began circling overhead, looking for its prey. Scanning the forest for movement while Broak stayed hidden, not daring to move, the dragon eventually gave up and flew off into the night.

Lighting a torch and calling out to Broak, Ander managed to get the dwarf back to the party. At this point, exhausted and beaten, they decided to spend the rest of the night sleeping close to the tunnel's entrance in case the dragon returned and needed to make a quick escape.

The next morning they gathered their three viable wolf pelts, collected 11 ears from the fallen goblins, and made their way back home to regroup before returning to the hole to explore what must be the goblins' lair.

They arrived back home in the evening and went to bed.

*   *   *
In the morning they set out for town to collect their bounties on the pelts and ears.

Monday, 21 September 2015

Where's That Goblin Hole?

June 19–20, 3430, Age of Kings

(note: Boots' player was away this session)

After dispatching a pack of wolves for their pelts to sell to a buyer back in town, the party got a fire going and Audrey and Ander set about skinning the wolves. Well after midnight they managed to get six pelts worth selling and strung them up in a tree to start drying them and decided to get some rest.

While the party slept (or meditated in Anders' case) Grabby sat up on a low tree branch to take watch. Just as he was getting ready to wake Audrey for her shift, he noticed the flicker of torch light moving through the dark forest. Through the darkness of the woods, passing behind trees and bushes, he could see two distinct torches, and soon heard the chatter of goblins.

The torches stopped, and so did the chatter: the band of goblins seems to have noticed the party's camp fire. Grabby used his new Mage Hand spell to rouse Audrey awake, at this point, Ander was alerted to the approaching goblins and awoke the snoring Broak.

In the darkness, one torch moved to the left flank, the other to the right as Audrey, Grabby and Ander all dug into ambush positions—and Broak made an attempt to hurriedly put his armour on.

Without warning, four goblin arrows whistled from out of the darkness, not from either torch's location, but from the south—three of which sank into Broak's armourless belly (one of which was a critical hit) causing him to stumble back. Realizing a force of goblins was hidden in the nearby tree line, Ander cast a magic fog onto the campsite to provide cover from the attack.

 From within the fog the sound of several confused goblins could be heard and even more began to come out from the dark tree line, having avoided the fog. The torch bearing goblin clambered up the boulder near Audrey, and another two emerged from the trees, weapons drawn, rushing at the barbarian. Audrey broke into a frenzy and swung her halberd wildly, cutting the two rushing goblins down (rolling a critical and maximum damage on both dice) and scampered up the boulder to skewer the third goblin, and flung his corpse into the middle of the fog (once again rolling maximum damage).

Soon, more goblins began to make their way out of the fog to engage the party. Broak, the half-dressed dwarf, quickly found himself swarmed as Ander fell back to a position of cover to pick off goblins with arrows, and Audrey and Grabby jumped into the fray to help Broak.

As Ander was leaping to and from cover to take down the goblins from afar, his quiver got snagged on some of the ruins he was using as cover, snapping its strap, sending his arrows spilling all over the forest floor. Embarrassing. As he was ducking back into cover, an ominous rush of air passed by overhead—something large had passed by over the treetops, sending leaves and small branches raining down. All the others engaged in melee hadn't noticed anything.

Just then a large dark shape came crashing through the forest canopy into the midst of Anders' fog, thinning it out. A roar could be heard and a large, shadowy form moved violently from withing the fog, and the death screams of goblins could be heard. As the fog dispersed, a dragon stood amid the terrified goblins, the body of a limp goblin clenched in its jaws—the dragon from their encounter under Orespire Mountain. The dragon, seeming to be only aware of the goblins, now glanced around, realizing the presence of the party. Its eyes then locked with Audrey's, seeing the thief who stole from its treasure hoard, the dragon narrowed its eyes at her and yellow-green fluid seeped from around the goblin in its mouth. Acrid fumes whisped from the dragon's flaring nostrils and the goblin's body who was dissolving it its mouth, which then fell into two separate heaps in front of the dragon.

Not wanting to wait around to be next, the party and the goblins all began to dash towards the dark forest to escape the enraged dragon. In the confusion and dark, Ander tripped and fell into a narrow passageway. As he stayed hidden. Ander could hear the goblins running and shouting something about "finding the hole," and "it's around here somewhere."