Memorializing the between-session RPing we did on the forum as part of the adventure log so it’s all in one place.
“This is amlug’muk *,” she proclaims, with even less grace and clearly upset. “I’m going to find my retainers.”
And with that, Indilwen stalks off.
“Oh.” She pauses, without turning around. “Someone else will have to heal the dwarf.” And she continues towards the ramp down into Dagger Rock proper.
*For our purposes, amlug’muk translates to the Common equivalent of “bullshit”. It’s a messy interwebs translation of “dragon feces”.
Bearclaw falls to a knee thrusting his sword into the ground. Exhausted, bruised and bloodied he raises his arms and proclaims, “Tyr! Tyr! Thank you for giving us the strength to vanquish our enemy!” Bearclaw rises and looks over his shoulder to give an approving nod to Sir Trellic, whom he knows pretty much saved everyone’s posteriors. He then surveys the field and sees Dragas and Sophos standing strong, true friends till the end. He also sees the crumpled body of Corkscrew. Oh ..dear dwarf.. if i had only found my courage earlier. To his puzzlement he also sees the half drow teacher from town. What the hell are you doing here? In the distance he can see Sereg who appears to be having words with Indilwen. No surprises there. Gathering his remaining strength Bearclaw prepares to make a litter for Corkscrew and return to the safety of the keep.
As the red haze of battle recedes and his bloodfire is banked with the death of the cave giant, Sereg takes a deep breath and takes stock of his companions. Their strength is spent, he thinks, at the same time he hears Indilwen utter a curse more suited to Ukutay than a blooded noble.
“High maintenance”, he mutters. Calculating his response, Sereg says, “Indilwen, wait. What ever we do, we should do as a group. Your companions look up to you and need your guidance. Don’t leave them without it now.” He hides the smirk and looks bland before she turns.
The glow of fires had turned the early evening darkness of a Spring night into a bright, Hellish affair. The stunted cave giant and its attendant orc puppet masters, their bodies still shuddering in the final throes of dying, were a bizarre sight even in death. In closer proximity, Sereg could see the giant was rather small for its species, not for a lack of maturity but from a hard life and under nourished by its orcish masters.
“A pathetic beast that deserved the fate it was given,” Sir Andred Trellic commented to the half-elven militiaman, Dragas.
“Aye, m’ Lord. We were in bad place until you swung around upon your gryphon.”
“From my vantage, you looked as if you all had the situation under control, where I was still unable to deal with the threat.” Andred continued, “I was focused on the breach in the bluff, an entrance that this dead beast had dug out, one that I had seen others entering. I suspect this whole attack on Dagger Rock is a ploy to get to whatever has been exposed.”
From below the bluff where the fires of burning buildings smoked, a loud bellow echoes followed by the sounds of growling bears, before growing quiet. A moment later, a loud cheer is heard.
“It sound like Lord Bearclaw is dealing with the orcs adequately.” Dragas points to the south and west where silhouettes of armoured orc warriors are seen fleeing Dagger Rock proper.
Sir Andred pulls a warhorn from his belt and sounds the call of summons. In the glowing smoke and surrounding darkness, gryphon calls can be heard in response.
“Soldier, give this vial to my Lady Indilwin…who seems to be leaving…well, Master Sereg, it is good to see you are well, can you administer this to the fallen dwarf off yonder? I need to gather my allies and prepare to meet our adversaries that have fled into the darkness of this new cave.” Andred salutes Raven Bearclaw and moves up the slope to the few trees found there where other gryphon riders are assembling while a few still remain aloft swooping down to attack the fleeing orcs.
Sophos surveys his surroundings, viewing the chaos around him, his ears still ringing from the last blow he received. A dead giant. Dead orcs. A newcomer who smells oddly of Corellonian incense, reminiscent of rats from the xvart lair, and speaks in a mad tongue. Raven has a look of recognition in his eyes upon seeing the half-drow and Lady Indilwen seems less bothered by him than she is by most things, and thus Sophos lets it pass.
As Sophos hears the exchange between Dragas and Sir Trellic, his wounds from battle suddenly open as he finds new stores of ki within himself. “…Sir Trellic, I don’t suppose you have anything to tend my wounds? I aim to protect Lady Indilwen, no matter where we go next. But if we find ourselves in battle again in our current state, I may not be of much use.”
“Thank you Sir Andred, I will see to him. Your aid was timely, you have my thanks for that as well.” Sereg steps over to the fallen dwarf and kneels beside him. Lifting his head, he administers the potion.
As Corkscrew becomes aware of his surroundings Sereg says, “That was bravely done Master Dwarf. Charging a giant while under boulder barrage. However, it appears there is a hole in your people’s giant fighting training. When giants hurl boulders at you it is customary to dodge them. While your attempts to block them with your face were successful, it appears even dwarf heads aren’t hard enough to avoid damage. I trust you’ll follow my advice in the future? Good! Now, on your feet, that’s a good lad!”
After helping Corkscrew to his feet, Sereg calls out, “Everyone, please gather ‘round”,
“I thank you all for your bravery in facing the giant—I know none of you owe me, or Daggerock your allegiance. There would have been no shame in not taking up arms, this hasn’t been your fight before now.” “However”, Sereg Continues. “Those of us in the borderlands between the Ulurassal and Zimerhelq have known the scourge of the giants and there allies for too long.” “Too long”, Sereg whispers, his eyes reflecting black from the flames.
“Yes, too long have we suffered their depredations and unrelenting attacks. Always defending, never attacking. Watching our villages burn and our loved ones die!” He sweeps his arm in an ark to take in the devastation around you. “Year after year, the attacks grow worse, the death tolls rise and we do nothing but cower behind our walls—or shelter under our trees. And what does this gain us? More attacks, more death, more sorrow.” A shadow seems to cross Sereg’s face at the same time his words seem to take on a lyrical quality.
“Enough I say!. It is far past time we take the fight to them. Let them know the ruin of a destroyed home. Let them feel the pain from the death of friends, if they have them, and family. I say we clear this cave, keep them from their goal, then we hunt! We hunt them down in whatever Steading, Rift or Hall they may call home. Be they misshapen inbred cave giants or the Tyrant himself, we take the fight to them!”
Sereg pauses, draws a dagger and cuts a streak in his palm. As the blood wells in his hand, dripping down his bow he yells, “Correllon, hear my oath! I pledge my life and blood from this day on to end the threat upon your people brought by the giants. I will take no rest, no comfort, know no home until the Storm Tyrant and his minions are dead, their shades howling in fear at the wrath brought upon them. Witness my vow on this night of blood!"
Corkscrew stares blankly and the smoke filled sky, trying to make out what few stars he can through the thick clouds.
Apples, he thinks quietly to himself. I should try my hand at ciders.
Now that this years harvest was gone, and soon his shop, corkscrew had to think of something. The business side of him was taking over, subconsciously trying to avoid the subject of his near death experience. He props himself up on his elbows, taking a look around. The giant was dead, or dying, which was good. He didn’t remember much about the fight, just that he had charged in recklessly and was repaid with two dwarf sized boulders. He winced in pain. The potion was helping, but it still felt like a few ribs were broken.
Why did I do that? he asks himself. Why charge the giant? that was stupid.
So what if the orcs raised the town? The grapes were gone, so there was little use for the surrounding area to corkscrew anymore. The damage done to the town proper would cause most available funds to go to repairs, not wine, so there was little profit to be made here as well. Why charge the giant? there was no profit to be made in it, and the chance of a reward were slim to none.
He sits up, wary of attempting to stand. Sereg is standing there, swearing his blood oath to his god. Sophos, seemingly in meditation, radiates energy as the wind swirls around him. Bearclaw and Dragas beam with newfound vigor after the victory, while lady Indilwen stomps off with more grace than corkscrew could ever muster, even on his best day.
These are heroes. These are what fables are made of. That is why you charged, just so you could be a part of their story.
“You’re a damned fool, Sereg.” Corkscrew squeaks out, his throat cracked and dry. “But a convincing one. If you can, take back that part about the comforts, cause you’re buying drinks when this is over.”
Hearing Sereg yell his vow, Indilwen stops and looks up to the sky. “Corellon help me,” she mutters. She turns around and approaches the group.
“Sophos. Come.” Indilwen orders, stomping a foot and pointing to the ground next to her, as if ordering a trained dog.
She turns to Corkscrew. “Dwarf, if you believe that you’ll find the secret to elven winemaking in that cave, by all means go. If not, I suggest you return with me.”
To Raven, “Lieutenant, I believe your father’s orders were to accompany me. Surely you don’t mean to disobey him?”
“And you say you’re from the Mithoi School?” Indilwen questions Kael. “That’s where I’m headed. Lead the way.”
Finally, she faces Sereg, sadness replacing the anger in her face.
“ Boe naid bain gwannathar,
Boe cuil ban firitha.
Boe naer gwannathach. ”
Even those who don’t speak Elven sense the words’ intent. Those who do recognize the words of an Elven funerary rite.