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Kansas City, MO
DM's brief notes on the 12-31-11 Run
Our latest exciting adventure in Neopolis began with the introduction of two new pcs. Layla introduced the fighter, Gardenia, and Travis introduced his second Neopolis fighter, Pugnax.
After the players got their spell learning, equipment purchases, and potion acquisition done, they received a call for help from Igor, stalwart Warden of the tower at the 3 day stop.
Death and destruction were visited up a group of Iron merchants and their porters while they spent the night at the 3 day stop. The merchants, the porters, Igor and his men did not see the agent of this destruction! This situation required heroic efforts and the party was all for it.
The party immediately went to the tower via the transport stone in Carrantus’s chamber.
Briefly examining the site of the carnage, the party found a trail left by large cloven hooves, and Harriet began tracking at once.
Harriet found two traps and the party stopped when two savage looking orcs were seen lurking in the scrub forest along the trail. The party started looking and found an ambush!
Battle developed and the party crushed the orcs with little difficulty. The trouble came from a black unicorn that used invisibility and speed to make a stealth attack.
The black unicorn was swarmed, and intelligent creature it is, rapidly beat feet for safety.
The party, in a very unusual move, ignored loot and stolen iron to rush in hot pursuit of the fleeing and wounded Black Unicorn. The party followed through the night while Harriet tracked the critter’s scent with a wolfie potion. The unicorn remained a head and led the party to the area of the two evil shrines discovered in a previous and recent run.
Near the shrines, the party encountered two giants! The party dealt with the two giants and two very nasty undead who appeared in the night!
The black unicorn watched the battle and was almost caught again, but escaped when certain PCs used the classic screaming headlong charge tactic to sneak up on an intelligent, wary, and stealthy foe.
At that point, the party returned to the city for leveling up and treasure division.
Want more details? Ask the PCS!
See you all next Saturday!
Kansas City, MO
Nyla's journal for our last exciting adventure! Dec 31, 2011
Nyla was visiting the Neptunian crew, looking into getting some more of the glass globes that she was using to fill with holy water from Philo. She's just agreed to pay him for several globes, when Igor walked up from the basement.
"My friends, I and my men are at a quandary. Last night, a group of iron merchants and porters were attacked outside the tower. We couldn't save several, as something killed three of their members before they could get inside. We fired lighted arrows out to try and spot the attacker, but it moved out of the range of the lights. This morning, we were able to step out into the area where the men died, but we can't find any tracks of orcs that might have finished them off. Will you come help us, and find their killer?"
None couldn't deny Igor, for he had agreed to house several captured enemies of the group for some time, so the party gathered their gear. Nyla returned to the temple of Bast for a couple of filled holy globes she'd prepared ahead of time, leaving the empties for the time being. A quick check of her gear, and she rejoined the others at the basement, ready to go through the portal. Thinking ahead, she grabbed a spare bucket, for she remembered the first time she'd gone to Igor's tower.
Arriving before the newcomers to the group, Nyla had the bucket ready for those who couldn't control their stomachs due to the magics that allowed them to travel the many miles between the gate under the Neptunian temple, and Igor's tower. While they recovered, Igor announced that he had asked his men to prepare a feast for the party, to allow everyone a good meal before we began our hunt.
Once finished with a meal, the group walked outside and began searching the area for clues. Harriet even used a potion to help her, and that allowed her to discover that the creature had cloven feet, and more than two. So now that it was known the enemy was a quadruped, the party set off, hot on the trail of the enemy.
They hadn't gotten far, when Harriet discovered a trap along the way. A thin tripwire crossed the trail, and while she easily avoided the trap, the rest of us pulled back while she used a sword to cut the wire. With a deep `TWANG', a huge bolt slammed into the ground not far from where she had been.
A little bit of exploration revealed a large crossbow rigged to fire large bolts, just short of those used in siege weapons. We cut the crossbow's line, to prevent anyone else from easily resetting the trap before continuing our trek to find the killer.
Further on, we had to step around a second trap, this one rigged to capture anyone into a pit trap. One that was nasty, for in the bottom, embedded into a thick layer of mud, were dozens of short stakes, that a person falling onto would impale themselves upon. Another short discussion on how to disarm the trap, was quickly averted by tossing in several large branches that partly filled the pit, the better to show the local wildlife that this area wasn't safe to be near.
Now more cautious, Harriet slowed her pace only slightly, because now a favorite sword of hers, was signaling that it could detect orcs in the area. She hadn't lost the trail, but the potion's magic had run out, so she was now proceeding purely on her skills of tracking. She passed the word on to the rest of us, that orcs were in the area.
Alerted, everyone started watching our surroundings, and the careful searching proved beneficial for we spotted two orcs who were watching us intently. Our party froze, looking more intently, and were rewarded when more and more orcs were revealed, giving away their position. Now the question was, would Harriet go amok in order to kill her favored enemy, or not?
The question was moot, as while we all drew weapons. We were under an obligation to end the porter's killer, and a bunch of orcs weren't going to stand in our way. Nyla slipped into the center of our formation, quickly whispering a spell to ask Bast for her blessing as we readied ourselves against the orcs.
First blood was ours, as we cautiously approached a group of orcs who met us in battle. Several tried hurting our new warriors, but Bast's magics proved beneficial to them, and none received more than minor wounds. This continued for a second round, til a shrill scream of pain filled the air.
It was from Harriet, and as most of us turned to look, saw with horror our ranger impaled upon a black unicorn's horn, a horn that was shoved deeply into her back, with blood leaking around the dark shaft and over the unicorn's muzzle. As the monster drew back, Harriet staggered a bit as her body shook. The horn attack had left poison in the wound, which nearly killed our ranger before she could shrug off it's effects.
The creature licked his bloody lips, but his pleasure was not long lasting. Many of our group turned from the few remaining orcs, intent on seeking revenge for the near death of our beloved friend Harriet. Once, twice several of our group used blades upon the foe, forcing him to retreat after turning invisibile to avoid being damaged any further.
Toki and Pugnaux turned from the main group of orcs, harring the orc archers who had fired upon us twice before they could start battling them; as that went on, our new paladin of Mitra stood firm against the remaining orcs, drawing their ire against him.
Nyla kept to the paladin's side, willing to keep him alive on the off chance he had bitten more than he could chew on, when we heard the thumping of hooves once more. A spare glance behind revealed a line of dust, but no creature charging was visible!
This time the unicorn had tried going after the paladin, but with the gods guiding his steps, he moved out of the way just before the horn could touch him. Whispering another prayer, Nyla and several others again tried squashing the unicorn, who retreated before being killed. Once again it turned invisible, and denied our group the satisfaction of sending it back to it's dark domain.
The last of the orcs fell quickly, without their ally causing distractions to the group. Nyla quickly passed Harriet a strong potion of health, which revived the ranger. Now no longer in as much pain as before, Harriet vowed that she would end the unicorn's life to prevent anyone else from dying on it's horn. She drank a second potion, one that would allow her to track the unicorn's scent, so that no matter where it went, it couldn't hide from her.
For the rest of the night, and somewhat into the next day, we followed Harriet as the unicorn led us on a merry chase. Around rock piles, through dense shrubbery, thickets and other dangers of the forest, we kept on his heels all night, preventing him from gaining a place to rest before we were on his trail again
Kansas City, MO
Part 2 of Nyla's journal for our last exciting adventure! Dec 31, 2011
But the constant tracking and pursuit was taking its toil from all of us, when we finally arrived at a clearing in the forest, a clearing that had two unusual items besides a giant that was their guardian. One was a statue of Vark the Slayer. And the second was what Nyla came to call, a skull tree. Dozen's of skulls, some with flesh and hair still attached, either hung or lay in a pile about the tree as if in part, some sort of sacrificial display for an evil god.
The guardian giant didn't like our party, and while we couldn't understand his words as he approached, the way he held his tree-club left no doubt in our minds. He intended to smash each member of our group, and leave the remains at the tree of skulls, if there was anything left.
Swords, slings and arrows were used against the giant. Some attacks proved useless, but others got through the monster's natural armor, leaving wounds upon his body. Tactics shifted, and more of the party gathered against our foe, switching to melee weapons in order to end the giant more quickly.
As the battle raged, Nyla pulled back for a round, her cautionary vision spotting something very out of place at the far end of the clearing. A pair of bushes had been pushed to the side, but there was no wind disturbing the air. So what had made the branches move apart? That was when she realized that the object was no less than the black unicorn, watching the battle with intent, even while he was invisible.
Abandoning caution, she hurried to Toki's side, letting him know of the unicorn's position, before returning to the combat against the giant.
Now forewarned of the unicorn's position, Toki's was joined by Gardenia, who's sling had proved to be unable to damage the giant's body. So Toki passed her a gem that would allow her to see the unicorn's true position, and asked her to guide him towards the beast.
By now, the battle against the giant had gone so well, that everyone was surprised once the bigger being fell over dead.
Tired and exhausted, Harriet and the others tried searching for anything of value the giant might have had, while the rest slumped down against trees, our bodies collapsing from the brief fight.
But our rest was interrupted, as out of a cloud, a second giant emerged. This one held a large two handed mace, and his face was angry as he looked on while Harriet dug into the first giant's belt, searching for treasure the first giant might have had. With a loud bellow, he raised up the club, intend upon making Harriet paste, then working his way around the rest of our group.
Renewing a battle against the second giant was difficult, but also eaiser. This one proved to be not as tough, allowing our group the opportunity to down him in the end, just like the first one.
Now with a thirst for more battle running through our veins, the others looked around and saw Toki advancing upon the far end of the meadow. Thinking there might be another enemy there to kill, almost everyone charged the portion of the glade. This spooked the unicorn, who ran away.
Toki was a bit put out, and his mood turned worse very shortly. While the rest of the group was working on dismantling the stone statue, Nyla had turned her attention to the humanoid skulls on the tree, picking the one with the most skin and hair left attached.
Using the same mirror to communicate with the dead that she had used with the captain of the haunted ship, she asked to speak with the spirit of the deceased person. To her shock, the lad who replied was Toki's younger brother, Thorkel Kettleson!
Nyla was quickly able to gain Toki's attention, and the pair looked onwards at Thorkel's visage in the mirror. The young lad looked in fine spirits, with friends passing him mugs of ale, and meat aplenty in Valhalla. As she and Toki watched through the mirror, the young lad told them of having died with a weapon in hand when a group of minotaurs had slaughtered him and his companions. They had jumped their group just three days previously, before devouring their flesh and leaving the skulls at the tree. Toki vowed to avenge his death, to which the younger brother told him that he was doing fine in the afterlife. Many women there were glad to introduce the younger male into what he hadn't been able to learn in the living world, Thorkel said with a grin on his face.
Several quick questions from Nyla gained the information that the group was seven to nine in number, and they were still in the area. At least, til the minotaurs had left his skull at the tree.
With everyone exhausted, it was a unanimous decision to tear down the Vark statue, as well as the skull tree. Those skulls which appeared demonic in origin were stored away by Nyla, who was curious as to what Philo's grandmother could do with them.
The portable tower was brought out, and shifts were set up to allow some people time to recover from the long trek. But a good night's sleep was denied, for during the night, two creatures showed up to disrupt our rest.
The first was some sort of demon, who pointed a sickle at the paladin of Mitra. A chilling screech was our first warning of intruders, as he failed to extract the paladin's soul to take back to the hells.
The party jumped to our feet, and raced outside to do battle. Harriet got in several good hits upon the creature, when a second monster showed up and charged. Between both monsters, our party was forced to divide it's strength in order to do battle upon both at the same time.
Twice more the demon tried using his soul gathering power, and each time the attempt failed. A final lucky shot brought him low, allowing the rest of us to swarm over the last creature. With over seven people surrounding and pounding away, the last intruder was crushed under our weapons.
Finally able to gather some rest, we loaded up the tower, climbed aboard the carpet and flew to Igor's tower. We announced the beast had eluded our efforts, but now it was wounded badly and would require time to heal. We vowed to return shortly after a rest, whereupon we would return to finish the beast. A quick portal jump back to Neopolis, and the group dispersed to relax for a few days.
Now we face more challenges ahead.
Will Toki venture forth to find his brother's killer, the band of minotaurs who had left his skull behind at the tree?
Or will we seek out the second shrine that was calling monsters to the region, making it impossible for people to settle down in the area?
Shall the party return to find the missing iron that had been snatched by the orcs once their ally, the black unicorn, had killed the porters?
Stay tuned for next week's session.
Kansas City, MO
Here's Part 1 of an account of our last exciting adventure by Gardenia!
Sitting in a modestly furnished cell in temple of Neptune in front of an open diary Gardenia was looking into candle fire. Her legs were sore, her shoulder hurt, face and arms were covered in scratches. What brought her here? It seemed that only a few days ago she was at her father’s farm helping with books or shepherding a flock of sheep and goats. She knew how to read and count but she loved shepherding - nobody was telling her what to do, where to go. There were only her flock, blue sky and green hills.
The marriage proposal came sudden and unwanted. She had seen the man at merchants’ meetings. His cold eyes, thin cruel lips always repulsed her. How could her father promise him her hand, how could he...without talking to her first? Was not she good and obedient daughter who deserved to choose her own destiny and love? Sitting in the darkening cell Gardenia remembered the conversation with her father and tears clouded her eyes.
The very next day her short sword and sling tucked safely into her belt and 11 pieces of gold in a pouch around her neck she stood at a port overlooking a harbor. The ship she chose was not the best, nor the newest, but the crew seemed nice so Gardenia chose to approach. “We are going to Neapolis,” captain replied to her polite inquiries.
Gardenia knew many stories about Neopolis, about opportunities it presented and freedoms it offered. She didn’t have enough money to board the ship but captain offered her a cook’s job, which Gardenia gladly took. The voyage was peaceful. After some charred meals, setting tunic on fire, and burned blistery hands Gardenia learned to cook on ship’s precarious fire pit. It seems that crew liked roasts and stews, as well as her songs and laughter. The captain asked her to stay when they reached Neopolis. Gardenia smiled a little remembering her friends on the ship. However the sight of the big city, the rush, the smells and colors drew her in and after saying good-bye to the crew she stepped into a crowd.
The very first time she heard about Neptune temple was in a tavern where she rested and replenished after wandering in Neopolis for hours. “It is the place for new comers,” they said, “It takes care of its people.” Gardenia didn’t understand what does that mean, but she has realized by then that she doesn’t have enough gold to survive on her own. She went back into darkening streets suddenly aware of thugs, thieves, and armed strangers.
Near the main street she noticed two unusual animals. With their human like features, nimbly limbs and long tales they reminded her of two little jesters. Gardenia was petting their soft fur as suddenly a little girl separated from the crowd. “Did you just arrive to Neopolis? Are you looking for something?” she asked, as creatures climbed on her shoulders and sat as they belonged there. The girl knew temple of Neptune and agreed to lead Gardenia for one gold piece.
The temple was large and brightly lit. The sound of chatter and laughter reached Gardenia when she stepped in a room full of people. She was warmly greeted and invited to share a meal, “You will meet the temple priest Paylo soon. He will determine if you can stay. Till then be our guest and rest.” And Gardenia was happy to have a safe place to stay that night.
Kansas City, MO
Brief DM's notes for Saturday's, 1/7/12, Run!
There were 10 pcs and the DM at the Table for a total of 11.
The party had 2 really special encounters. I think Travis rolled both.
The party left the city via the main gate. Thorfinn the Mighty, intent on rescuing Harriet, pursued the party out of town, catching up with them early the next morning at the 1 day stop! Thorfinn's big war band gaggle of misfits did not last long against the might of the party. Deuce put old Thorfinn under in a smooth move backstab attack, and his head now hangs on the tree of Odin. Certain of other his parts also hang in the tree with his head. Ask Harriet, who is disgusted she did not get a bash in on the late Thorfinn, for more information.
After returning to town, and doing some leveling up, the party went via Igor's Tower and on to the 2 day stop. There they sought the minotaurs who killed Toki's baby brother. Using a potion, Harriet led the party to those murdering minotaurs. The battle was violent and the black unicorn was found! Harriet snagged him with her net of entrapment, and the Black Unicorn and the minotaurs are no more!
There is more, but you will have to ask the players for details!
Kansas City, MO
Shuan's letter to his sister, Hilda.
Little sister, such a day we have had. We head out to avenge Toki's little brother. First we discover a planer traveler (much like Sprague). Seems a sage went to sleep on one plane and fell through to our world. Per Toki's suggestion, after the party found this person at the one day stop, we take him back to meet Gylus in Neopolis.
Unfortunately Thorfin the mighty decided to show up with a group of deluded followers.
I am sure the fight was epic, but I only had eyes for one target. Passing through the miscellaneous henchmen I finally come face to face with Loki's pawn. After blasting him with my back up hammer (did not want to use my temple weapon) I think Thorfin was more surprised than I, when Duce came up from behind and materialized behind him with a sharp long sword, stuck in Thorfin's">Thorfin's back.... Fitting end for that scum. I now plan to take up residence in Odin's temple.
Harriet was put out, as she wanted some of that blow hard. Actually she took time to gather a few "souvenirs" south of his belt buckle. (gonna get some kibble and bits!)
So after we return to Neopolis and wait for folks to take care of business, we wander out (via the gate to Igor's tower) and head to the two day stop in search of the killers of Toki's little brother.
The whole time some little green imp seems to be following us. Still not sure how it tracked us. Any way we head out and find a group of Minotaur's, You would have loved the brawl. Five big horned bastards vs our party and a wolf....
It was Duce who saw the evil, (what an irony) the thief saw the deceiver.. As Toki and the party battled the minotaurs, Duce charged the wolf to discover it was really a black unicorn. With Harriet's help we net the evil one horned horse, and Shaun delivers the final blow and Neptune crew is victorious. Avenged of Toki's brother, and whacked Thorfin the pain.....along with ending the threat of the Black Unicorn.
When can we meet at the Temple of Ragnar to nail Thorfin's head (and kibble) next to the black Unicorn before asking Freya to restore your weapon?
After that I plan to throw such a feast.....
Kansas City, MO
DM Notes from our last exciting adventure in Neopolis!
First, I want to thank Ken and his folks for being gracious and very tolerant hosts!
The party went into the Necropolis to find a missing man.
Prunelda, the swine herd, helped them locate the missing man's hidden garden plot.
They found the missing man buried in dirt at the bottom of an underground chamber. Seems like part of the chamber's roof collapsed when the missing man was weeding his turnips or pulling his beets.
The party alternated between slow, painful progress and frenetic crazed charges as the explored an ancient tomb. The battle cries rang and the phrase, "Advice, what advice, I don't need no stinking advice!" was often heard.
An iron golem and a particularly disgusting bloated undead creature were defeated.
Hapless Pugnax died twice, and Thorin died once, but both were saved from permanent demise by their stalwart fellow adventurers.
Thorin learned the hard way not to cause trouble in town.
Petunia the pig found her way back to the herd,
Prunelda waits for Grail to reclaim his, er.. security deposit. She is, after all, a devotee of the Way Temple and Mitra.
For more details, and trust me there are plenty of juicy stories tell, ask the players!
See you all Saturday!
Kansas City, MO
Nyla's account of our exciting adventure on 1/7/12!
Nyla was eager to assist Toki, and the rest of the Neptunian crew to avenge Toki's younger brother.
Teaming up with three newcomers who had arrived on a boat, they all left openly by one of the Neopolis gates. They knew that someone would alert Thornkinn about the party leaving the city. In fact, they were hoping someone would do so.
The traveling was uneventful, with only glimpses of a follower keeping an eye on the group. That was no surprise, considering the lies Thornkinn had told his friends that he wanted Harriet, and that she would return his love, if it hadn't been for the Neptunian crew who had bespelled her mind, turning her away from him.
By evening they had arrived at the one day stop, and set up our instant tower after checking out the area to be sure there wasn't anything nearby to attack right away. A few minutes of volunteering who had what night watch, and the rest of us began to set up supper, when something charged out of the nearby river, making a bee-line towards Toki. It savagely attacked the warrior, biting and clawing his arms as it tried to kill him.
Startled by the sudden appearance, the group gathered it wits, and charged in to defeat the creature. Twice more the beast was able to damage Toki before it fell to the combined wrath of the party.
Toki was hurt deeply, so Shaun and Nyla worked together to channel healing magics from their gods. Toki had come close to dying from the monster, but thankfully a couple of potions during the battle had kept him alive til the creature finally fell.
Quickly the corpse was pushed with poles into the water, which boiled rapidly as the piranaha moved in to devour the body. Everyone retreated to the tower, which was locked up to avoid further monster attacks.
The first two watches went peacefully, and the third started that way. Until an hour before daylight when the sentries heard a racket coming from the river.
Alerted, almost everyone got outside, ready for battle. But to our surprise, we discovered merely a human who somehow had ended up in the river. After a short conversation, we realized the person was from another world, and had been dropped into our world by accident. As we speculated on what to do with him besides starting up dawn fry as well as a small fire to let him dry off, we were rudely interrupted by shouting from the other side of the clearing.
It seemed that the spy that had followed us from Neopolis was making his move, taunting Toki to battle. Tired of all the constant teasing, Toki charged the other warrior, intent on cleaving his head from his body.
The rest of us merely rolled our eyes, and hustled to join Toki.
As expected, Thornkinn had arranged an ambush to lure Toki to his doom. For by the time Toki had reached the first taunter, the rest of his party stepped out of the brush around the clearing. But he hadn't anticipated all of us coming along to keep our friend alive.
The battle was furious but short lived. Thornkinn was urging his followers on from the rear, when to his surprise Harriet charged through the line and brought down one of his main defenders. As he readied his weapons to defend himself, Shaun also broke through the line, and with Duce backstabbing the Loki priest, succeeded in delivering a fatal blow to the fool.
With their leader dead, the Scandinavians broke ranks mostly, only a few were willing to remain and die in battle. The rest ran like rats, fleeing a sinking ship. We captured one, and after some discussion, decided to take him back to Neopolis for sale at the slave market.
Returning to the city, we also took along the plane traveler, who'd arrived by accident, intent on helping him get used to our world.
Shaun took Thornkinn's head back to the Temple of Odin, where he placed it upon the sacrificial tree. Harriet went to meet with Granny Bedows, where she passed over Thornkinn's male parts, whereupon Granny told her, she'd plenty of choice bits from other males that no longer needed them, and she didn't know what to use them for.
We broke up for a few weeks, most of us needing to train up a level. But once that was finished, we traveled through the portal to Igor's Tower, to complete Toki's quest.
Leaving Igor's tower, we stopped not far away and climbed aboard our carpet once more. We flew low over the forest while invisible, searching for another clearing where the minotaurs might be living nearby.
When we got closed to the 2nd day stop, we found something that got our interest. A minotaur standard, made from a dead minotaur, announced that a band of them had moved into the area.
Landing at a nearby glade, we walked towards the standard, which looked very closely like one we'd seen in the blasted lands. Made from the head, hands, and a long cloak, which was the hide of the minotaur draped over a spear.
Searching carefully, we found a trail leading away from the standard, towards a nearby hillock. We approached the mound, only to discover that we'd set off a trap. A series of bells began to jingle, announcing our presence.
Toki darted to the side, trying to find the bells in time to silence them, but to no avail. The minotaurs charged forth from an opening in the hillock, along with a wolf.
To slow the minotaurs, Harriet released a spell to wrap vines and grass about them, but the minotaurs didn't reach the area of the spell's effect before we moved in to tackle them.
As the battle began, Duce used a magical item to turn invisible, and ran around behind the minotaurs. At first his intent was to backstab the last minotaur, when he realized the wolf wasn't running away. He changed his tactics, and decided to kill the wolf instead. But as his blades struck home, the illusionary magic around the wolf faded away, revealing his opponent was the Black Unicorn!
Hearing Duce's exclamation of surprise, Harriet ran around to help the thief. Seeing the unicorn, she quickly pulled out a net and snared the creature in the woven strands of rope.
The unicorn struggled to break free, now seriously ticked off that these two legged beings would dare to try and capture him, but the ropes held. He squirmed mightly, but Harriet held on until Duce and Shaun could both kill the monster.
As for the rest of the minotaurs, they too fell quickly as the party worked together to down them. One by one, the foul horned behemoths bellowed their last as they died on our blades.
A cheer of jubilation went up, as Toki cried out that now his brother could truly find peace, knowing his killer was dead.
Delighted, Harriet and Shaun worked to remove the unicorn's head, which Shaun delivered in triumph to the Temple of Odin. Never before had such a creature ever graced the tree, and word of our success went forth amongst the city. Finally, some measure of control was being established against the bands of monsters along the river valley.
But would this be enough? Will there be more bands of monsters to attack along the Great Road. What sort of new threats will arise to prevent civilization from conquering the region? Only time, and the bards, would tell..
Kansas City, MO
Sayuri's Tale of our latest exciting adventure in Neopolis!
My name is Sayuri, come, sit, and let me weave you a tale of danger, daring, horror, and heroism. My story begins with a promise unkept. Let me take you to the bustling town of Neopolis were it all started.
I had sought out Luca the leader of the Theives guild. After presenting him with a sapphire that I had found in the ashes of an Iron Gollum he agreed to let me train. After four, long, grueling weeks I was free to continue my neverending quest for fame and fortune. After my training I sought out the Infamous Harriet. Harriet, Brodir, and Toki had taken up an adventure for a group of people that lived outside of Neopolis called the Pix.
You see the Pix had an ongoing battle with the Orcs, and a promise to destroy them had been made, but was unkept. The Orcs had come, killing some, and kidnapped two young girls. The Pix wanting retripution, and our group wanting our reputation untarnished we agreed to find the children. Sadly we didn't hold out much hope finding them alive.
As we left town I had a sinking feeling in my stomach. There was something in the air that didn't feel right. My heart raced, pounding within my chest. My hands became cold and clammy, as I marched next to Harriet. My pride and my courage was the only thing that made me stay.
Before we started our adventure, Brodir was joined by a man I only knew as Bezerker. I couldn't tell much about the man, but I could tell he was untrustworthy. Once we were beyond the city gates, we noticed a group of men following us. Much like the Bezerker their skin had a slight blue hue and the were whistling a strange song. The Bezerker started to act strange, such as ripping his lion cloth off, (his only piece of clothing.) I could smell an ambush and I was right. The Bezerkers ran at us, the sounds of scrapping metel filled the air as our axes and swords met. The battle was long and bloody, but in the end we had won. With my sword raised above my head I gave my battle cry. "Die you foul minion of evil."
After the battle we continued onward to find the Orcs. Little did we know we had more standing in our way. As we trudged along, the smell of rotting flesh was strong and hung in the air. Even though we sensed something we continued on our quest. Nothing would stop us from redeeming ourselves.
Suddenly the ground exploded all around us revealing six giant crabs. It seemed no matter how many times we struck them they kept coming. After killing two of our men, we finally defeated the foul creatures. After we healed the two that had fallen we we ready for more. Even though we were tired from battle we continued onward.
After many miles we came upon a graveyard. The sad broken tombs left an omenious filling deep inside my gut. I could smell the Orcs from where I stood. The electricity of impending battle ran through my body. Suddenly like ghost in the mist the Orcs appeared. Arrows and magic spells flew by me. My should burst in pain, my mind realized I had been struck by an arrow. I tried to move out of range but three orcs stood in my way. I only had one choice, to fight my way out. I raised my short sword and attacked. The battle was long and difficult. Pain exploded in my back as two more arrows hit me. I knew I had to continue fighting. Finally after an grueling battle I had won. I looked around me and the graveyard had become full of Orc bodys. When the dust settled there stood two little girls. Both of them were shaking in fear. You see the battle may have been long and men may have died but the day was ours.
Kansas City, MO
An Account by rolf of our latest exciting adventure in Neopolis!
I was having the most wonderful daydream… you know the kind… there we were Sara, the baker’s daughter, was snuggled up to me and whispering how much she like the flowers I had gathered earlier that day… just for her. She leaned in to kiss my reddening cheek… and Blinx ran into the shop and POOF the image was gone… there I was standing in front of a table trimming the latest hide my dad had to finish…. ‘Damned Blinx’ I thought. ‘What now?’
Blinx was scrambling under the table mumbling something about Farmer Jim and his chickens. I grabbed him by the collar and tried to calm him a bit… If I got this correctly, through his breathless rambling, he was caught AGAIN trying to swipe a few extra eggs from the farmer’s coop… this is the third time this month! When is he ever gonna learn? At 16, he should have learned a lesson… but Noooo… Dad is going to whoop him this time, for sure!
Blinx is constantly getting into others people’s business… a scarf here… a flower pot there… nothing seems to be in the right place for him. It is not that he is stealing things… he just thinks things need to be ‘liberated’ and placed where he thinks it needs to be. And he is good at it… I will find Mary’s hair ribbons on the lamp post next to the inn in town… or an extra goblet at the dinner table… nothing really of value…
Oh yea, I haven’t introduced myself… I am Rolf… I am the elder son of Robert and Madeline, the local tanner. I have been arms deep in animal hides for as long as I could stand. This has, of course, turned out a healthy, strong young man… At 19, I am nothing to scoff at… not quite a handsome man, but I have had no complaints. I seem to have been elected as Blinx’s mentor and protector. This gets to be troublesome… especially when he decides to rearrange things… But I guess that is life.
At evening meal Dad really let Blinx have it. He yelled… Screamed… even pleaded with Blinx… but in the end he sighed and set Blinx to extra chores, knowing that he will never follow through. Tomorrow Blinx will run off and do whatever he felt like that day. He always gets away with it.
But that was not going to be the case this time. The next morning Richard, the self appointed village mayor, stopped by the house. With Farmer Jim and a few others from around the village trailing behind, Richard set down an ultimatum for my family…
‘There have been a lot of complaints lately.’ He said. ‘It seems that Blinx is getting into too much mischief.’
Pointing over Dad’s shoulder towards the two of us, he continued. ‘Either he finds a better use of his time, or you will all have to leave. We are tired of looking everywhere for our things.’
Dad‘s face was turning red with either embarrassment or rage… We were about to find out exactly what he thought of each and every person present… I had never heard words like that. Wow! Dad sure hated everyone in this town and he made it perfectly clear who was cheating whom… and which child had questionable parentage…
It seems that Blinx is not going to be very popular in this village… I am not even sure he is going to become anything here. And for that matter, do I want to spend the rest of my life in this little berg? Do I want to be a tanner the rest of my life? I don’t think so!
It was time for me to go out and find my way in life… I guess that Blinx will be leaving too.
I had heard that there were jobs in Neopolis. Maybe even a school or two of the adventuring type. We should be able to either find work or fun… This was looking like a good idea right now… If we leave this little village and make something of us, mom and dad’s life would be a little less stressful.
So I pulled Blinx out into the back and explained what we were going to do… not asking or suggesting to him, but TELLING him this is how it is going to be and he needed to get packed without alerting either of our parents.
With those huge eyes, he just nodded and slinked back into the house.
After midnight I snuck into the kitchen to pack a few food items. Sitting on the table was a backpack with a not attached to it… It had my name on the note.
What was this?
I slipped the note off the pack and opened it. It was from Mom.
I know what you are planning and I know you are old enough to do this. But know I will miss you. No, I did not say a word to your dad. You know how he is. I might even lock you in the cellar if he found out. Know this, we both Love you and your brother. You are the best things to happen to us. And your dad is very proud of you 2. Even is he does not say it. Keep Blinx safe and here are some traveling supplies for you journey.
Damn, mom is good. I had not even hinted to anything and she was on to us.
Snatching up the pack I quietly exited the house and found Blinx already in the back yard. He was so excited; he did not even try to get any sleep tonight.
So, off we headed… to excited to speak to each other, we ran down the only road out of this dead end village. We were on our way to fun and adventure.
We were on our way. Headed to our future and away from our boring past. What was there to see? What was to become of us? Riches and fame? Pain or danger? Who knew? But we were ready for this. Ready for anything the world had to throw at us… Well, anything save for this long grueling walking… How far could this town be? We have been walking for hours now…
In actuality we have only been out for a few hours.. the sun was not even up… But we could do it… We would make it to town.
Early the next morning we were startled by strange noises up ahead. Grunts and gargling sounds and what sounded like a herd of cattle stomping through the trees.
We crept up through the trees as silently as we could. There were a bunch of green beasts tromping across the path we were headed down. And amongst them were prisoners… human looking save for all the tattoos all over them… they looked like walking cave painting…
But they were prisoners… that was clear. Tied to one of the larger beasts, these people were scared and tired. The beast were shoving them to get these poor persons to move faster… yelling at them in some strange guttural squealing. They needed help… And Blinx thought it should be him. I looked up to see him jetting from tree to tree with our mom’s kitchen knife in his hand. I had to stop him. He was going to get himself killed this time.
I scrambled up to where he was hiding. Gods only know how I was NOT seen or heard by these things. I tackled Blinx behind a bush and covered his mouth with my hand.
‘Stop this, Blinxy.’ I whispered. You gonna get me dead. We cannot take all these, these, these things.’
He struggled and whimpered silently. Finally the troupe passed us and was out of sight.
I warned Blinx to be silent. ‘Are you going to be quiet or do I have to whack you one?’