SB1.12: Mother wants her lair back/A kindly visit before battle

The characters for this session:

  • Thomas, cleric of Cuthbert
  • Belmont, paladin of Hieroneous
  • Barky, southron
  • Edgar, wizard


  • Oswald, halberdier
  • Vert, cooshee
  • Hodd the muleteer and
  • Siward the guard;
  • Jenny the mule and
  • Bess the mule;
  • Niamh and Glove AKA Sentinel
  • Dietrich the evil

Part one: Mother wants her lair back

Threads in play: 

  1. Having overcome Lavinia’s stockade but found her absent, seek to kill her and any of her brood.
  2. Seek vengeance on the Hextorite slavers at Fort Champion
  3. Scout Adlerweg Tower that wards Adlerweg Pass, with or without its gold hoard
  4. In both cases, do not cross into the Duchy
  5. Bring Niamh to the temple of Pelor ‘north of the sculpted river’ to cure her lycanthropy

Lootin’ and waitin’

After the initial full search – which takes perhaps an hour – Thomas gathers us and directs our energies against the Owlbear. Edgar wonders if perchance we can use the Owlbear. But has no idea how. So with arrows and bolts the Owlbear is laid low.

Which suddenly shifts the GM from not worrying about bolt expenditure to tracking it in detail. At the end of that, we have 10 between us.

Now, to the ambushing? Barky wonders, not for the first time, should we not simply set on our way once again? But no! For as surely as spellcasters love their spellbooks, Lavinia or ‘mother’ to her minions will be hot on our trail seeking vengeance.

We pace the grounds and try sightlines from atop the mound. Eventually Thomas elects that all four hefty types will wait behind the gate, and therefore Edgar sits near the mound entrance, watching them. The lake, which shelters the rear of the stockade to some extent, must needs be rearguard too. The rest of the expedition, since brought inside, waits in a length of tunnel near the residence-chamber, but not so near it that a sneaker tracking into the mound will bump into them.


A diversion

It is a sufficiently long watch that all of Barky’s enhanced strength and endurance has gone. [Barky makes a good wilderness check, Edgar a mediocre one] But at last, the attack begins! Under the fitful gleams of a westering sun, and distant soughing of trees, running feet are heard clockwise of the gate. [Notice checks are all pretty good, 15 upward to 24]

Thomas extracts a Heat Metal scroll from its tube.

“Do we run over there?” Oswald mutters.

“Yep” Barky responds, gesturing vaguely.

“Whaddya mean ‘yep’ – is that a yes or no? Belmont asks, reasonably enough.

“Well someone should – there are four of us here” Barky offers, without being specific.

Four humanoids, half-orcs by the look of them, clamber swiftly over the stockade wall some hundred feet clockwise of the gate, leap down, and run towards the mound.

Initiatives: Oswald, Barky, Belmont/intruders/Thomas, Edgar

As Barky sets off apace, all three others in the ‘gate’ team follow him.

Later Barky is cross, but if the culprit is the GM, who is counting quick spoken interchanges between players as rounds, and moving his attackers each round, that’s notionally unfair but not unfair in practice. Since none of the waiting characters have line of sight, no real decision can be made until the attackers show over the stockade: so the GM’s process washes out as more or less fair. Blame player indecision. We generally expect Thomas to set tactics but have no battle caller. Possibly the GM could have made it clearer, given excellence of Notice checks, which character had the right to say how many approached and from where; and which character had to wait to be told.

His swift pace carrying him ahead of the others, Barky lets rage fuel his thews, powering into a mighty sweep with his sword. His target, a similarly mighty-thewed half-orc, eludes the swing somehow.

[It’s a convincing attack and the likelihood of this being an illusion as well as a diversion is present in Edgar’s mind, and he passes that thought to Thomas]

Oswald lunges his halberd at another but he and the other two half-orcs also evade the attack, dancing away and jeering. Belmont skids to a halt and doubles back towards the gate. [Spot is poor – he can make out the gate] Glancing over his shoulder, for he too suspects this to be a diversion, Thomas continues in his course towards the fight. Edgar scoops up three prepped oil-bombs and runs towards where he believes Belmont will end up.

Oswald’s next trip attempt is also evaded. Barky [who does not make good Will SV] continues his berserk attack! Thomas, [Will 22] having warned the other two with a bellow: that it is indeed an illusion: begins returning to the gate, casting a suspicious eye around the compound.

Belmont stops within charge range of the gate and concentrates, bringing up Detect Evil. Edgar joins him, and begins lighting a candle.

Oswald grunts with frustration and as Thomas calls ‘they may be illusions’ [makes good Will SV] laughs sourly at being gulled, and begins returning. Thomas’ bellow has cut through Barky’s focus and he doubles back, speeding away from Oswald and past the heavy-armoured cleric. Belmont cannot sense any evil, and accepts an oil bomb from Edgar, who lights it from his candle.

Three or four new intruders leap down from the stockade, counter-clockwise from Belmont, and two of them are sturdy, and well-armed. Belmont waits ready to throw as they come in range. The others join him. Edgar lifts his light crossbow and looses: a bolt bounces with slight harm off the largest target, an axeman. [So far Edgar has yet to do more than 1 damage with any one shot]

Oswald moves between Edgar and the newcomers. Suddenly, acid splashes near Thomas. He notices its trajectory [good spot check] and points up the mound:

“She’s up there!”

Barky has already charged at the newcomers and the raging thews of the southron power his mighty greatsword through the axeman’s armour and deep into his flank! Belmont hurls his oilbomb, and its fire catches on one of the two lighter-armed figures.

“I got one!” Belmont shouts gleefully with a note of surprise in his voice. He draws his sword and advances. But not quick enough to protect Barky, who is flanked by the two powerful warriors. The second, armed with a bastard sword, penetrates his defences and cuts deep. Two lighter types, including Dietrich (who is the non-burning one) move past that melee and towards Thomas and Oswald.

Thomas is still 75′ back from them, so keeps pace with Oswald and casts Bless. Edgar fires a bolt at Lavinia, narrowly missing, and also catches up to Thomas.

Lavinia moves downhill, perhaps in order to throw a support spell, and is surprised – then alarmed – to see Barky suddenly rocketing up at her! The southron, taking another heavy cut from the bastard sword as he does so, breaks off his melee [Mobility boosts his defence] and runs full at her, ramming his greatsword right through her chest!

Belmont finds himself in melee with the rogues, but his armour is enough to deflect their daggers. The axeman shouts with grief and anger and runs at Barky. Oswald and Thomas close on the Belmont melee. Edgar drops Dietrich with a Sleep spell, and adjusts his position to keep his team between he and sharp pointy things.

Barky yanks his sword clear and with the last of his rage counter-charges the axeman, and again his blade drinks deep. The axeman staggers, trying to keep his guts in, then collapses.

At the melee, Belmont ignores the rogue and fends off the bastard sword. Thomas casts Doom on the swordsman. Edgar weakens the rogue with Ray of enfeeblement: Oswald trips the weakened man and he and Belmont slaughter him as he tries to roll clear. Barky walks tiredly down to the melee. Belmont uses Smite Evil to deal a deep cut to the swordsman – his first wound. Seeing the man who killed Mother arriving the swordsman lunges and again cuts deep into Barky! Thomas gets to a better position and slams the swordsman with his mace [which is now rated at +2]. And finally, Oswald trips him and the swordsman is slaughtered.

Meanwhile Edgar has retrieved his quarterstaff and whistled for Vert. He walks up to loot Lavinia. While he recovers four useful or valuable items from the corpse, Thomas heals most of Barky’s hurts and Belmont takes care of himself.

General looting takes place after Dietrich is tied up securely. Thomas has made it clear he won’t tolerate simply killing the rogue. Later a Detect Magic finds that the general loot contains an enchanted dagger and leather armour set.


[Dietrich is offered a choice of a quick execution, or coming back to face Commandery justice.

Thread closed: Lavinia’s stockade.

New thread: Bring Dietrich back to face justice, so long as he behaves himself.]


But that is the next day. The remainder of the day is taken up with thoughtfully disposing of the bodies in the lake, and a good meal of barbecued puma where victory is celebrated!


Part two: A kindly visit before battle

Through the woods on the trail west

The expedition sets off early and makes fair time under clear skies. There’s a hint of spring in the air, and the woodland trail – which is a genuine trail now – affords the chance of cover from any spying aerials. As best we can, we keep under that cover.

Dietrich is tethered to the rear mule, Siward rear of him. Siward’s armour is better than even enchanted leather, so Hodd wears the leather. Oswald has the enchanted dagger as a reserve weapon.

Towards dusk we come upon a good campsite, backed onto a rock face.



Night camp passes uneventfully. Until the dragon shows up.

“Oh…. hello there!”

Barky, who is on watch, controls his first emotions [Will SV] as a large creature, atop the cliff, stares down.

“Oooh – adventure time!” Barky yells.

The dragon scrapes its wings through the descent and seats itself at the fire.

“Greeting to you, O dragon. To who do we have the honour of speaking?” Edgar asks, introducing his circle.

“I am Kingsley, often known as the Kindly.”

“There must be a story to go with that, O Kinglsey.”

“Indeed there is. I’ve been stepping about, seeing what passes here after an absence of some time… what is it you are doing about here? …Fancy a drink?”

And with that the copper-scaled dragon produces a cask from somewhere and broaches it. Edgar thanks him and dips his mug in. A robust vintage. Belmont, who has been Detecting Evil this while, also sups, and then so do the others.

“I’ve been keeping an eye on things, perhaps have nodded off a bit, and they have changed. So, what’s your business?”

Edgar attempts to determine what span of time Kingsley refers to, and Kingsley cracks some lousy riddle-jokes. Which explain nothing, except that Kingsley prefers low-brow jokes. Eventually and with respect Edgar explains our purposes.

Kingsley is helpful, particularly in clarifying that the Hextorite Fort Champion is built over the old Pelorite temple that is Niamh’s best chance of a cure. He gives a general estimate of man-numbers and a vague explanation that hobgoblins live in a level below. He also reassures Thomas that the temple has been long out of occupation by Pelorites.

Altered thread: Bring Niamh to the temple of Pelor, now Fort Champion, to cure her lycanthropy

Since Kingsley has hinted that an older evil now wakes, Edgar retells a brief version of Bertran’s tale of the Glove and Gauntlet. And yes, that is what Kingsley means. And he knows what travels on Niamh’s hand. As a kind of reward for this, Kingsley enchants Barky with Levitate so as to get a birdseye view of the Gann-mouth, and tells an actual joke. (Still low-brow though.)

Then turns invisible and departs.


Barky’s view has given a much better idea of how bridge, Gann and Fort fit together. The bridge is perhaps a quarter-mile north of the fort, which lies on a foreland or low bluff at the western side of the Gann-mouth. Having exchanged some ideas on this, and ruled out going back for the keelboat, and also ruled out using Charm Person to get Dietrich to help us, we finish our sleep.


Dawn of the assault: across the Gann

The following day is just as good. Kingsley estimated 5 miles to the enemy: we use the trail to near forest edge, tether off Bess and Jenny and Dietrich (the latter, gagged) and leave Hodd Siward Vert and Niamh there, and move to the forest edge. Thomas reminds us of the Calm Emotions tactic.

Barky slides forward to the bridge, finding it unattended. It’s a modest-scale trestle, the uprights and guard rails allowing some cover.

We cross, cloaked to muffle glinting gear, and one at a time so as not to draw idle eyes.

The trail on the west side is heavily rutted by supply wagons. The woods here have been picked over for fuel. Stealing south, we come in view of working parties, working at the beginnings of a proper palisade around Fort Champion. The workers are mainly goblin, with inevitable hobgoblin taskmasters, and some humans. Two work-shacks stand on site, which in turn must be a good hundred yards away from the fort. And as we prepare for assault, the session ends.


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SB1.11: A strategy to conquer

The characters for this session:

  • Thomas, cleric of Cuthbert
  • Belmont, paladin of Hieroneous
  • Barky, southron
  • Edgar, wizard


  • Oswald, halberdier
  • Vert, cooshee
  • Hodd the muleteer and
  • Siward the guard;
  • Jenny the mule and
  • Bess the mule;
  • Niamh and Glove AKA Sentinel

Part one: The planning

Threads in play: 

  1. Gain any local knowledge of the area from the stockade, then sail a boat north across the lake
  2. Seek vengeance on the Hextorite slavers: finish tracing the route to where they pass into the Duchy over the Dragon Mountains
  3. Locate the ancient fort that wards the pass (possibly the same pass), with or without its gold hoard
  4. In both cases, do not cross into the Duchy
  5. Bring Niamh to the temple of Pelor ‘north of the sculpted river’ to cure her lycanthropy

Loot shares

The stockade being secure, we spend a happy day looting (especially clean dry underclothing in the first instance), drying/oiling gear, putting on clean clothing, and doing a rough sorting-out of loot.

One of the more important finds is that there is a navigable keelboat out at the wharf; another more important finds is scribe-copies of outgoing correspondence, and a map. Blessing the lawful-evil need to compile duplicates, we now have local knowledge.

The beneficiaries of the early sorting-out:

  • Barky gains a masterwork longbow with unusually strong construction (mighty at least as far as his +2 STR);
  • Belmont gains an enchanted longsword (later we learn it’s +1);
  • Edgar gains a pearl that is in all likelihood a pearl of recall (Barky volunteers to rule out underwater breathing in an amusing experiment – he soon recovers from the drowning damage);
  • Oswald gains a masterwork set of studded leather armour;
  • Thomas gains two scrolls in cases, one with 3xCure Light the other with Heat Metal.

This creates some knock-on surplus gear but no-one ‘needs’ any of it so it’s put back into general loot along with many other items and coin, and three gems.

Four potions are also found and the labels being read, shared out among the party. Then it’s time to consider the map:

Thoughts of what we are willing to do

The map, and letters referring to forts and their commanders, bring the not-very-surprising revelation that each of us has their own idea of what our mission actually is. Once that’s cleared up a little, Sentinel (after hypnosis removes Niamh’s awareness) is asked if he recognises any of the possible rivers as ‘sculpted’. The Gann is the more likely of the choices, and (in Edgar’s mind at least) the most likely location for the Temple of Pelor is the ‘ruin’ marked just north of Fort Champion on the map. At worst case, the temple is in the same place as the ancient Pelorite fortress, far up Adlerweg Pass, now marked in as Adlerweg Tower.

But first things first! There’s more than one route across, and a lot of that depends on our one non-lubber, Oswald. He pronounces himself able to steer due north, with help from those willing and able to way-haul-away and sheet things home when told.

Given that, what’s to be done about ‘Lavinia’s stockade’? From the letter about it we know she’s not a Hextorite, and just because an evil cleric refers to someone as a witch, that doesn’t make them evil. All we know at this stage is she is part of the beacon warning system the Hextorites have, and has a ‘brood’. The approaches east of her stockade are deplored as undefended. Sailing north means we must pass her from the east.

The other obvious target is Fort Champion, which seals the mouth of the Gann. According to the letters it is commanded by Edwar the Fool, who has left its defences incomplete. Sounds useful! It is certainly something we will need to tackle.

And more obliquely, if we aim to wreak vengeance on every Hextorite stronghold, we should not forget the wretched South Blockhouse, though navigating around to it is probably impractical.

Sensing a certain lack of commitment around the table to actually gaining the pass and purging ‘Adlerweg Tower’ we decide on a simple ‘let’s get over there and see’ – at least for now.

Altered thread:Locate the ancient fort…’ becomes ‘Scout Adlerweg Tower that wards Adlerweg Pass, with or without its gold hoard’

Notes about leaving and sailing

  • Edgar writes “free fort” in draconic on a looted length of cloth and it is hoist up the stockade flagstaff.
  • Hefty amounts of fodder and rations are moved to the keelboat.
  • Valuable gear such as full plate suits and masterworks are stowed aboard.
  • Enough arms armour and straw stuffing are taken aboard to be able to rig up a fake crew of hobgoblins, should we need to look like Hextorites.
  • Metal arms and armour we don’t take are pitched into the moat or lake.
  • The drydocked keelboats are stove in, and their carts damaged.
  • The stockade’s jollyboat is tethered to the keelboat and taken along.
  • It is a two-day voyage across the great lake, with two scares from water and air.
  • The entire voyage occurs under the best weather we’ve had so far – clear but overcast.

I think we all get into playing lubbers, which is pretty easy for two of us, and the best line goes to Thomas: “Can we peg that steery thing you’ve been using…”

Westward to the witch’s stockade

We make landfall and use the jollyboat to ferry gear across. Hodd swims Bess and Jenny to safe landing. We anchor the keelboat offshore, and hide the jollyboat as best Barky can advise. Bearing in mind he’s no tracker.

Note: Valuable gear is still stowed aboard the keelboat, too bulky or time-consuming to ferry ashore.

There’s no trail, so we spread out a little. This makes us less of an easy kill from aerials, and boosts the chances of finding something like a trail or a campsite.

Party order: Niamh is in the middle, with Hodd, the mules then Siward as rearguard. Around Niamh the others form a kind of burst formation, around 30′ apart each (though Vert stays with Edgar). Barky uses his faster speed to rove a little, in front. Edgar takes the shore or south flank, Oswald to fore of him; Thomas takes the north flank, Belmont to fore of him. We agree on who we fall back to, in given circumstances.

Thread closed: 

  1. Gain any local knowledge of the area from the stockade, then sail a boat north across the lake

The great debate: avoid, talk or kill?

Barky nearly walks us into the stockade but Belmont spots a beacon tower. We cut off to a nearby stand of timber and tether the mules, then have a round-table debate on what we actually want to do.

It is not only a round-table debate, it gets a little circular:

  1. If the ‘witch’ is actually neutral and not even a witch, we should negotiate
  2. Another option is to avoid her by circling wide, now we know where the stockade is
  3. And a third option is to exterminate her and her brood
  4. But if she’s powerful we should negotiate
  5. But if she’s treacherous the signal will be sent, so we should avoid
  6. But if she’s powerful we can’t afford to leave her behind us
  7. But if she’s powerful we should avoid her

This debate really happens in two stages, one before Barky scouts the stockade, one after. There looks to be about 50 defenders manning the stockade, but they are unnaturally still, so it could be a ruse. Or they might be skeletons, which don’t get bored. There’s one gate, almost certainly barred. The beacon tower stands atop a mound or hillock, which the stockade surrounds. And there’s no ‘lived in’ smells.

Eventually the vote is for assaulting, but if at all possible, conserving our supplies of potions. We have an inkling the defenders are fakes.

New thread: Overcome the witch’s stockade

Part two: The assault

Threads in play:

  1. Overcome the witch’s stockade
  2. Seek vengeance on the Hextorite slavers: finish tracing the route to where they pass into the Duchy over the Dragon Mountains
  3. Scout Adlerweg Tower that wards Adlerweg Pass, with or without its gold hoard
  4. In both cases 2 and 3, do not cross into the Duchy
  5. Bring Niamh to the temple of Pelor ‘north of the sculpted river’ to cure her lycanthropy

The breach is swift

We move around to opposite the gate, then rush it. Barky, well ahead and boosted with Bull’s Strength, scrambles over it and unbars it. He calls back that the defenders are indeed faked-up dummies. He rushes towards the beacon tower, which stands atop the hillock. By the time the others pull the gates open and enter he is already up near the beacon, like a huge brazier with firewood piled atop it.

As Barky heaves the brazier off to tumble with a clanging boom onto the hillock, Edgar rushes across to the nearest cover – which is the hillock itself. There are no ancillary stockade buildings – it is in fact, a stockade to defend the hillock.


Into the mound

There appears to be but one entrance (though indeed we do not search in detail) and it is an open shaft, 6′ high, 5′ broad, level into the mound. Edgar lights his bullseye lantern and Barky readies himself for trouble (Thomas casts Endurance and Resistance on him) and takes the lead. Belmont is next, to provide security against fear.

Based on the principle of ‘keep going left’ Barky stops at the first junction, a slightly wider area with a door left and right. Edgar enchants himself with Protection from Arrows and opens the door left. It’s another shaft, still level. Belmont’s Detect Evil isn’t helping him.

Not far along there’s a Y-junction where the right shaft leads to a chamber. The left shaft leads but to some shabby and empty lair.


Meet the occupants!

The chamber appears to be furnished and Edgar leads the way boldly to the central table, where stands a lantern and utensils. The others also enter and spread out ready for trouble – or so they think! Before he can light the lantern two great cats spring out at Barky and Belmont!


Round 0: Neither cat manages to penetrate the sturdy armour of their victims. Barky is not taken unwares but his swinging blade slides harmlessly off the cat’s ruff.

Round 1: Edgar snaps off a Flare but it doesn’t distract Barky’s attacker. The cats tear into the two warriors, one gouging deep into Belmont’s fine armour. Barky too is bleeding freely, but he avoids the raking hind claws. Then Thomas chants and the cats fall back!(1) Barky and Belmont team up (unaggressively?) on one and kill it. Then Thomas is stabbed from behind by a man! Oswald reacts swiftly but the newcomer sidesteps the halberd easily [since Oswald rolls a 1].

Round 2: The man has been hiding in an alcove. No others have appeared. Edgar casts True Strike and watches out warily for other alcove-hidden menaces. The remaining cat attacks Barky again though Barky wrenches clear! Thomas steps clear of his assailant, swears lustily, and chants again with Calm Emotions. Barky and Belmont assail the remaining cat, cutting it, then Oswald rushes across and ends its life.

Round 3: Edgar gets Thomas’ signal for ‘talk’ and uses Hypnotism to befriend the now-passive man and ask him some questions…


Mother’s not home yet

The chief danger still extant is an Owlbear. Mother is out visiting; she and ‘the others’ aren’t home yet. They are expected back before nightfall. Edgar asks our new friend Dietrich to show us exactly where the Owlbear is. He leads the way, then bolts. Barky darts after him and manages a savage cut, then he’s gone in the darkness.

Returning to the chamber awaiting Barky, we others have a quick search. What we noted before as being most likely the witch’s alcove seems worth looting. But Barky, returning, reports that Dietrich is clear, so we  must needs take some minutes to search the passages.


Roundabout to frustration

Belmont takes point – his wounds are healed, unlike Barky’s – and we locate the Owlbear. It is in a side-passage, chained. And large. And there’s no way past it. So we move on searching further passages and discover that they loop round to the first junction we came to. Which has a pit trap. Barky fishes Belmont out of it – little harm done – and we check the remaining door.

It leads to a looping passage, and another pit trap, but we wisely avoid this one and head on further, discovering that the passage leads, via a semi-concealed panel, into the main passage and out of the mound. So sadly guessing that Dietrich has gotten free and can tell Mother all about us, we return to the chamber wherein was the witch’s alcove.

The witch’s alcove has treasure – including plenty of coin – and a spellbook. And has Edgar calculates how many days the non-Illusion spells will take to transcribe, and makes idle suggestions about how the witch, returning, may be caught off-guard, the session ends.

Altered thread: Having overcome the witch’s stockade but found her absent, seek to kill her and any of her brood.

(1) Using the D&D initiative sequence to claim no aggressive actions are being taken against the cats at the moment the spell takes effect is disingenuous. Obviously, they are in melee against people that are trying their best to harm them. The GM reserves the right to reverse this call in future.

Adventures where there’s no perfectly right answer to an obstacle give players agency. Good stuff! Disappointing though that the sword-swingers failed pretty badly against the cats (quite a few 3s being rolled from what I could hear) and Dietrich was left alive. We’re effectively tethered to the stockade by our failure, trying to deal with the witch. Or are we? Perhaps the group vote will be to simply move on. Stay tuned!

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Slaver Bay: Legend of the Glove and Gauntlet

Long ago, before the founding of the Duchy of Hextor, before the humanoid invaded the Western Reaches, there were two rival human kingdoms either side of the Dragon Range.

The Northern Kingdom longed to conquer the Southern Kingdom because of its rich lands blessed by Pelor. To do so the North would need to control the best land route between the two kingdoms: the Adlerweg Pass through the mountains.

But the Southern Kingdom erected a keep on the Adlerweg Pass. Under the protection of the Adlerweg Keep traders could travel between the two kingdoms, but no army could transit the Pass without first controlling the Keep.

With the Keep in place the Southern Kingdom felt secure behind its fortifications: but of course, the Northern Kingdom’s ambitions were not ended by the existence of a fortress. The Northern king turned to the magic crafts. His wizards crafted a mighty artefact for the Northern king – the Gauntlet. Shaped as a military gauntlet of hard black leather reinforced with metal to fit the right hand, the gauntlet’s sole purpose was to overthrow Adlerweg Keep using powerful magic and brute force. With such a weapon, victory for the Northern Kingdom seemed sure!

But once the Southern king heard of the construction of the Gauntlet, he turned to his wizards for a remedy. Rushing against time, the southern mages created a counter – a magical glove called the Sentinel. Constructed in soft kid leather, the Sentinel was created to thwart the Gauntlet by using subtler magic and appealing to the goodness within the hearts of its bearers. So, to face an unstoppable force, an unmovable object was readied.

For two generations the Southern Kingdom countered the aggression of the Northern Kings, skirmish for skirmish, relieving the besieged and even meeting the Northern host in the field with all that they could muster. Led by the Gauntlet, the Northern Kingdom always fought on. The resulting cost for both kingdoms grew dear.

At last, on a bloody battlefield in the high ranges the last Northern army was defeated by the Southern Kingdom. The broken remnants of the Northern army returned home, having lost a king, the king’s heir, the Gauntlet, and the champion who wore it. The Southern Kingdom in gaining this victory had lost the flower of their nobility, and sought a truce.

The Northern Kingdom, bereft of both king and lawful heir, fell into a civil war long and poisonous and the truce became a peace treaty. With the Gauntlet lost or destroyed, the Sentinel became a relic, a curiosity from heroic days. When later the humanoid invasions of the Western Reaches overwhelmed both kingdoms the Sentinel, along with many other trophies and treasures of the Southern Kingdom was lost.

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SB1.10: Against the slaver stockade

The characters for this session:

  • Thomas, cleric of Cuthbert
  • Belmont, paladin of Hieroneous
  • Barky, southron
  • Edgar, wizard


  • Oswald, halberdier
  • Vert, cooshee
  • Hodd the muleteer and
  • Siward the guard;
  • Jenny the mule and
  • Bess the mule;
  • Clungh Ock and Varg, lizardmen
  • Niamh and Glove

Part one: The lizardmen

Threads in play: 

  1. Parley with the lizardmen, pay reparations and gain permission to cross their swamp
  2. Seek vengeance on the Hextorite slavers: trace a route through the great swamp to where they pass into the Duchy over the Dragon Mountains
  3. Locate the ancient fort that wards the pass (possibly the same pass), with or without its gold hoard
  4. In both cases, do not cross into the Duchy


By the time Hodd wakes up [under normal recovery % rules] a lizardman is peering at Edgar’s scratchings. Edgar, the draconic speaker, raises an open hand. The lizardman calls:

“No meaning this.”

“We talk. Pay you. We go,” Edgar clarifies: then, to the others:

“Lizardman dialect doesn’t extend to parley. I suppose that means they don’t have an equivalent for entente cordiale, either.”

“They may want to cut their losses as well,” Barky encourages, and Thomas is of like mind.

Three lizardmen arrive before sundown, including a spokes-lizard and a ruler. Edgar humbly negotiates, dancing a fine line along the truth. He throws quite a lot of fault on Mesym without lying about him. In response to lizardman prompting he explains the general mission and Hextorite slavers vs Realm. The lizardmen (to whom the concept of two warring groups of monkey-men is news) offer three options:

  1. Lay out goods, they take what they want, and provide guides to the fortress.
  2. A champion steps forward to fight the lizardman champion with lizardman weapons, no metal and no magic, win: and guides will be provided for free; but lose: be plundered and turn back.
  3. War.

Edgar takes these options back. Barky is really the only warrior capable of handling option two, and seeing a glint in Thomas’ eye when this option is raised, Edgar points out that only Barky can choose it. After clarifying that ‘goods’ won’t include the metal armour and weapons that are so precious to them the vote is for option one.

The lizardmen plunder back their own bandolier of platinum pieces and the gold and pearl from the harpy’s victim. And the two lizardman shields. Striking while the iron is hot Edgar asks Belmont to set a price on his own shield. He offers 50gp for its recovery and with the aid of a dirt-sketch of the site the lizardmen undertake the quest. In the event, and after a day, they report that the site is now too dangerous to recover the shield. They keep the 50gp (as agreed) and give Belmont a lizardman shield instead, a generous gesture that is appreciated by all.


Back on the trail

The day’s rest has allowed full healing for everyone and in good spirits, guided by the three lizardmen Clungh Ock and Varg, the expedition makes good progress. Edgar has a yarn to the three and draws out some useful information about the goblin fortress, including where boats are anchored and that it is a tower-reinforced stockade. [Think a larger version of the English stockade in Braveheart, but set in a swamp and with a boat-bay off it.]


The strange case of the unkilling werewolf, part one

That this is kobold territory is underlined, when the sight of several kobolds being sent flying alerts the party to danger. The incident is quite near, so the party easily witnesses one unfortunate kobold, who seems to have seized an eel, being cornered by a werewolf! But strangely, the werewolf snaps up the eel, not the humanoid, and leaps away into the reeds. Having shaken its fist and declared what it would have done had the werewolf lingered, the kobold takes itself out of range. The lizardmen know of the creature as ‘the insane werewolf’ since it doesn’t hunt its natural prey.

Edgar follows up this chatty conversation – which digresses into menu options featuring kobold – by picking through the guides’ stock of yarns about lost treasures and the like – focusing on the dry land side of things. The bridge to nowhere and standing stones are useful possibilities.


The ever victorious army, part three

The passage of the remaining marshes follows Snarvil’s proposed path – to Edgar and Barky’s mild surprise – and is marred by a night visit from the ever-victorious army of the swamp. This time it’s not a two-way attack, so the mules are safe. Thomas calms most of the kobold squad down with Calm Emotions and Edgar pays the remaining pair off with 2gp. This marks the first occasion on which Calm Emotions is used to enable negotiation.

Thread closed: lizardman swamp crossing


Part two: The slavers stockade

Threads in play: 

  1. Scout the stockade and ascertain how to secure a boat crossing north
  2. Seek vengeance on the Hextorite slavers: trace a route through the great swamp to where they pass into the Duchy over the Dragon Mountains
  3. Locate the ancient fort that wards the pass (possibly the same pass), with or without its gold hoard
  4. In both cases, do not cross into the Duchy

Scouting the stockade

The fortress area is duly reached and Ock Varg and Clungh take themselves off. Belmont wonders if they would like to explain where the tribute-post is for coming south from the north, but Edgar decides not to translate this.

The expedition advances a little, to the point where wooden wall can be seen and a Hextor banner flying.

Barky sheds sinkable gear and heads out to scout the walls while the expedition main force waits well back behind reeds. The southron approaches along the trail which leads roughly south to north, and gets the idea of scale and entrances there. He then circles clockwise and examines the west wall, going so far as to creep right up to the strakes to peer through. Finally, he slips away, well pleased.


The strange case of the unkilling werewolf, part two

Meanwhile the camp is disturbed by a tattered woman who, aside from wearing a distinctive glove, seems to have survived the marsh after escaping a slaver coffle.

Her story is that she is Niamh, is from Fairmont, and has survived the marsh after escaping a slaver coffle – or more specifically being left for dead. But her unwillingness to take off the glove can’t be explained, so Edgar hypnotises her.

This action allows a different persona to speak:

“Know that I am a sentinel, Glove. My purpose is to defeat the Gauntlet, and defend the fortress.(1) This mortal has the curse of lycanthropy on her. Thus far I have prevented the curse from taking full hold – she has not eaten humanoid. She needs healing from the temple of Pelor on the north side of the sculpted river.”

Edgar proposes an alliance of mutual benefit, and they agree to guide Niamh to the temple. Belmont and Thomas see to the festering bite on her shoulder, for now.

New thread: Bring Niamh to the temple of Pelor north of the sculpted river to cure her lycanthropy


It’ll be fine, don’t overthink it

Barky’s outline of the two walls and lack of guards on the west towers, and Niamh’s estimate that the fortress has a score of occupants, produces three options:

  1. Steal a boat and sail north. Oswald can skipper it, the others can crew it.
  2. Assault out of the setting sun, lay waste to all except captives, and then commandeer a boat.
  3. Negotiate with the Hextorites for passage.

There are issues of logistics and lack of information with option 1, and option 3 is barely mentioned before being voted out. Option 2 fits the overall mission.

Adventurer-like idiocy is stripped out and getting in there, using a coordinated reasonably stealthy approach, and killing (to quote Thomas) becomes the focus. Steps are worked out to get the ‘fighting team’ into the south-west tower and attack along the south parapet to the south-east tower, then improvise. As Edgar assures them, no plan lasts beyond the first blow, so no need to get into detail.

And so leaving the mule team of Hodd, Siward and Vert to guard Bess and Jenny, the others move in from the west.


The battle for the Hextorite stockade

Approaching with the setting sun over their right shoulder, the attackers gain the wall without alarm. Once a patrolling goblin has passed, Barky uses his Ring of Climbing and Belmont uses a potion of Spider Climbing, and both gain the south-west tower. Edgar’s rope, now knotted, is made fast, and Thomas clambers up, followed by Oswald, the next-strongest. As Oswald recovers his halberd, a challenge in the common tongue is heard!

Round 0: Goblin challenges as it approaches back west along the parapet: “‘Ooizit? Oozere?”

Round 1: Barky leaps to the attack but is not quite able to subdue the goblin, and alarm becomes general. Belmont moves up behind Barky and stabs the goblin, who expires. Oswald rushes along and past them. A melee group moves out of the south-east tower along the parapet and in the stockade, inside the bunkhouse, Hextorites slap on helms and grab shields. Thomas advances along the parapet, ready to use Calm Emotion on folks exiting the bunkhouse.

Edgar clumsily clambers up the knotted rope to the tower [rolls an 8 which drops to 7].

Round 2: Barky advances, unlimbering his sword, and letting the fires of rage feed his power. He half-vaults past Oswald and smashes down the next goblin! Belmont uses his Spider Climbing to head down the inside and along underneath towards the action. Other than footwear, he’s still heavily armoured. Oswald advances into the space Barky has cleared and flicks the next goblin aside. A hulking hobgoblin advances to the fray, but the first swing of his heavy flail goes wide. Thomas creeps along further for an ideal angle into the courtyard, and Edgar checks Niamh (she’s also managing the climb) and advances behind Thomas.

As expected a small host of goblins, and two hobgoblins, boil out of the bunkhouse and most are promptly stopped by Thomas’ chant. Two advance.

Round 3: Barky swings lustily against the hobgoblin, his blade swings deep, and the hobgoblin falls with a groan. Barky drops the short jump down, practically next to Belmont, towards the advancing pair. Belmont advances half-right to cover behind what seems to be a cookhouse. Oswald jumps down beside Barky. A trio of enemy, including a hobgoblin, advances from the south-east towards Belmont’s back. Edgar can see this and calls for Thomas to fall back to some cover (in regard to the bunkhouse) and casts Sleep on the trio behind Belmont. They all fall. The aggressive pair from the bunkhouse, also including a hobgoblin, charge at Barky and Oswald, dealing a shrewd flail-blow to Barky.

Round 4: Belmont may have missed a chance to chop the nearest hobgoblin down but he steps in and does the job now. Oswald trips his mark and stabs the ground between his sprawled feet. Edgar makes sure Niamh knows she’s on watch, and runs along to the south-east tower, past where a ladder enables access to the ground. “And don’t disturb them on the ground,” he calls back to Belmont.

There are no further Hextorite reinforcements as yet; if there are more in the bunkhouse, they are armouring more thoroughly.

Round 5: Barky ends the life of the prone goblin. Belmont advances slightly towards the stockade’s centre. He can now see a long hutch-like slave pen, mid-stockade. He also has a good view of three well-armoured men emerging from the bunkhouse; one calls Hextor’s Blessing. Edgar can see them from his vantage and drops Glitterdust around the cleric, blinding one of the goblins.

Round 6:  Barky leaps the corpse to move towards the cleric and cuts savagely at him, using his rage. Belmont follows up, more slowly owing to his armour, with the hutch on his sword flank. The cleric and one ritter attacks Barky while his other ritter focuses on Belmont. Edgar throws up Protection from Arrows and moves down the ladder.

Round 7: Barky and Belmont have their hands full until Oswald finally connects solidly, felling the cleric. Thomas throws up a second Calm Emotions and again holds the non-combat crowd. Edgar waves encouragingly to Niamh and advances to support range (about 30-40′) of the melee.

Round 8: Two goblinoids, unaffected by Thomas’ new spell, rush the interlopers. Belmont and the ritter trade blows. Barky receives another slight cut from his ritter. Two more larger goblinoid types move up, and the situation seems finely balanced. Edgar uses Hypnotism to warn the enemy that lizardmen are attacking the ship. The six or so calmed goblins can now consider this calmly, possibly in a discussion circle, but the two larger types head that way.

Round 9: Barky’s rage ends. Oswald kills the lone goblin still in the fight. Edgar drops the ritter savaging Barky with Tasha’s Hideous Laughter.

Round 10: Barky Belmont and Oswald gank the prone ritter, leaving only Belmont’s attacker and the pair of hobgoblins investigating the boats. The ritter thrusts his sword past Belmont’s shield and deep into his flank [14 crit]. Edgar loads his crossbow, casts True Strike and moves up even closer in support.

Round 11: Barky Belmont and Oswald surround the last ritter who dies fighting. Then as Thomas’ second spell ends, they shake the blood off their blades ready for action against the goblins, and the session ends with the GM tentatively calling the fight as won.

Thread closed: Boat passage investigated

New thread: Gain any local knowledge of the area from the stockade, then sail a boat north across the lake

(1) Our bard friend Bertran has told this stirring tale in detail; it hasn’t been recorded in detail.

This was a whole lot better than the last couple of sessions, considered from a group perspective. The holiday break rust has been scraped off. Sure, there was still a lot of what I could term ‘excessive guessing’ and have specifically named ‘adventurer idiocy’ but the group achieved the two goals needed to be achieved and did it without internal bickering. The benefit can be seen in that, even though our top fighters weren’t rolling hot, the assault succeeded. Stay tuned to see if the dynamic continues!

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SB1.09: The lizardmen strike back

The characters for this session:

  • Thomas, cleric of Cuthbert
  • Belmont, paladin of Hieroneous
  • Barky, southron
  • Edgar, wizard


  • Oswald, halberdier
  • Vert, cooshee
  • Hodd the muleteer and
  • Siward the guard;
  • Jenny the mule and
  • Bess the mule.

The state of play: About three days into the great northern swamp, a harpy lures most of the night-camped expedition out across islets towards its lair. Mesym, who is on watch, goes missing presumed drowned. Belmont, also on watch, is pulled up out of a deep spot, minus his sword and shield. The harpy itself, downed by Tasha’s Hideous Laughter and caught by Animate Rope, is being towed in. 

Threads in play: 

  1. Recover Mesym, or his body
  2. Seek vengeance on the Hextorite slavers: trace a route through the great swamp to where they pass into the Duchy over the Dragon Mountains
  3. Locate the ancient fort that wards the pass (possibly the same pass), with or without its gold hoard
  4. In both cases, do not cross into the Duchy

Mesym’s soggy requiem

The harpy is towed in, and has drowned by the time it slushes up to the islet. Thomas sums up:

“He was wearing chainmail, would have gone in right here, he’s not going to float to the surface, so let’s get the bullseye searching, take a good look, then failing that, it’s night, it’s cold, I think we’ll need to head back to camp…”

Edgar, more optimistic about chances of finding the ranger, tries Detect Magic. No luck. It does prompt Thomas to try a more detailed version though, and for quite some time he moves patiently around islets trying scans of the water.

Meanwhile Edgar, with the rope off the corpse, focuses on two things: there’s a tree on the harpy’s isle that may be a useful anchor, and getting across to it. When not ensorcelled, getting to it is merely a matter of probing out from the current islet and finding a wadable channel. He picks wrong way first up, but right the second attempt, and is soon across.

Oswald follows and makes the rope firm to the tree. Edgar clambers up and retrieves the light, a lantern. Belmont has now arrived and checks a collapsed shack for signs of Mesym. There’s an old corpse. Suddenly forgetting Mesym, Belmont loots in detail (Oswald kibbitzing). The loot is useful: a pouch with gold coin and a black pearl, a chain shirt, a sabre, and a composite longbow.

Edgar uses the spare lantern to get on with the rescue. He checks a second tree. No ranger. Plenty of bones. He walks back and announces stage two of the rescue: operation deep-dive.

The rope’s end is paid back, via Oswald on the next islet, to Barky on the original ‘drop off point’. (Barky’s quite startled to learn he’s the diver!) The southron swims down through the black murk and gropes around [rolls a 19 on swim!] and with the aid of hearty types hauling away on the the rope, recovers Mesym and Belmont’s sword, to boot. Thomas checks, but it’s obvious that Mesym is dead.

It’s been a quite exhausting trial. The survivors manhandle Mesym’s corpse back, account for events to the others, and lay out the body. Then sleep.

I’ve skipped side-argument. Maybe my choice of at least checking the harpy’s islet (she might have swooped, grappled Mesym, and dropped him onto her lair) and only then plumbing the depths was the wrong way round, maybe not. I only felt confident about asking Barky to dive once the rope was tied off. The whole section, from Thomas summing up, to dragging the corpse out of the water, takes 30 minutes real time. 

During his morning ritual Thomas prays for a holy abjuration that will prevent Mesym from being zombified. The ranger’s corpse is buried properly, and the march resumes.


Snarvil, prince of guides

Snarvil expresses his concern that the party has had a fatality.

“On the other hand,” Edgar coaxes, “he was the one muttering about burning you at the stake, or some such, so be of good cheer!”

“Oh, I don’t bear grudges… I am a prince among kobolds! But ah… bad luck really… bad luck!”

“But you know…” Edgar pursues, “this does present you with an opportunity to make more profit than on our first acquaintance.”

“Just for speculation’s sake… what does that mean?”

“We would like to reward you for… guiding us in the correct direction. Now, a cynic would say, ha ha I’ll just guide them in the wrong direction, and when they die I’ll take all their treasure. But that cynic would be wrong-thinking. For we have very wrathful people with us, who would be sure to take you with us. So, what I’m getting at is, a good guiding job, and there’ll be more than just virtue its own reward. You could indeed become a prince among kobolds. I gather they’re short of a warlord, as well.”

“Well it’s… very attractive offer… but part of me is always a free spirit.”

“Of course, you are a wanderer. But part of the charm of wandering into a village… nest… lair… is picking up kobold chicks… hens… females… you know: mo’ money, mo’ booty. All those kobolds females that said your belly is a bit saggy – you won’t hear that anymore!”


Party order: Barky and Snarvil, then a short gap, then Oswald, Edgar, Thomas, Belmont, and the mule team. Siward is rearguard.


Ogres of the swamp

The fog lies deep upon the swamp, and only Barky’s keen senses prevent he and Snarvil from walking into a huge figure standing in wait. Barky draws back – Snarvil sees his draw and raises on that – and there’s a pause as some guttural, deep-chested voice speaks.

Thomas, obscured from seeing what may be the problem, speculates it’s probably the ogre version of ‘halt who goes there’ and seeks more information. (He is quite right, but no-one can come up with a way to act on it.) Barky advises his spellcasters to buff, graciously waits off the count of one hand of fingers then:

Round 0: “Who goes there” – in Orcish. It is met by another deep-chested and unintelligible challenge.

Thomas throws up a Bless, calling Barky back to him.

“Woo haws yaw” – Merrow, attempting the challenge in common

Round 1: “Keep back on the dry side of this channel,” Barky encourages the others, hoping the big shape advances. Edgar hurls Glitterdust at the vague shape, with success! Its angry cries hearten the adventurers. Thomas imbues Barky with Bull Strength [great roll, STR leaps to 18 before rage]. Belmont and Oswald wait.

“Let’s get into it” urges Thomas, eyes glittering with bloodlust.

Round 2: Barky sets his toes at the channel. “Wait a few seconds,” Edgar urges. A huge stump, hurled by the blinded merrow, misses everyone and splashes down far away. Edgar imbues himself with True Strike. Belmont, hearkening to the bloodlust in Thomas’ voice, feels the same surge rising in his own veins and vaults the channel heading for the blinded creature – but the two merrow lying in wait off in the water both spear him! He ignores the pain and finishes at a charge, smashing his two-hander into the near-helpless merrow.

Round 3: Barky checks that the water-bound merrow aren’t able to simply leap out, and hurdles after Belmont. One spear hits him, but like Belmont he ignores that and slices a massive blow into the blinded merrow, shearing through a shoulder and into its ribs – it collapses in a froth of blood!

Edgar hurls an end of his rope at one of the water-borne merrow:

“Loop and tangle!”

It is immediately in difficulties.

“Have at it – it can’t hit at you!” Edgar encourages. The other merrow notices this unfair tactic and steps towards Edgar, long spear reaching out – but missing. Thomas cries Doom on the non-tangled merrow. It seems to work. Belmont plunges back, headed for the party. Oswald attempts a move against the probing spear and drops his halberd.

Round 4: Barky lines the tangled merrow up and runs, leaping over and down with a smashing blow. Edgar incapacitates the Doom-laden merrow with Tasha’s Hideous Laughter. The tangled merrow attempts to swim away, and Thomas ably grabs the Edgar end of the rope!

Rounds 5-7: STR based contesting between a tangled merrow and Thomas, Belmont, Barky and Oswald, more or less (OK, less) assisted by Snarvil and Edgar. Edgar contributes with his last True Strike by shooting the merrow with his light crossbow.

“That’s it for me,” Edgar says regretfully.

“You can reload those you know,” Belmont reminds him.

“You can? – why… yes!”

Round 8: The merrow loses the tug-o-war, then charges the islet and a melee ensues. The merrow narrowly misses Thomas.

Edgar reloads and calls: “Don’t worry Thomas, this won’t get anywhere near you!” and misses completely.

Round 9: Barky leaps high, and smashes the merrow. The response misses. Thomas wields his mace, striking hard, but the merrow still stays in the fight.

Edgar fires and hits Barky.

“I hear there’s some type of training you can do, for shooting accurately,” he waffles later.

“Yes – get it!” Thomas advises.

Belmont wields his longsword with ferocity while Oswald flails inefectually with his sabre.

“Oswald – pull back and get your halberd – you’re not doing very well with that sabre!” Edgar advises unhelpfully. “I haven’t shot anyone yet!” he snarks back.

Round 10: As the merrow lunges forward he’s cut hard and dies. And sinks, taking the rope with it.


Obligations, part one

Edgar pays off another 50′ of rope from a mule, and congratulates everyone, encouraging them with the thought of a lair up the trail. Thomas cures Barky. Belmont heals himself.

The expedition pushes on, Snarvil and Barky privately agreeing the merrow will not have a land lair on the trail. When they find a fine big isle they advise a good rest or camp.


Agreeing that camping is fine, the expedition begins to assemble tents. Edgar asks Snarvil to use the wisdom of his ancestor Kirk Took Muck to string up alarm-traps. Snarvil scavenges twine to go with Edgar’s supply and sets to.

Edgar notices Thomas brooding over the contents of his pack and takes the chance to speak privately to him.

“The last couple of engagements I’ve been expecting you to take charge, and it hasn’t happened. We don’t want the dunderheads to take charge… it would be far better if the wisdom of Cuthbert guided us than the arse of Hieroneous. So please…”

“I hear ya,” retorts Thomas.


Obligations, part two

Edgar himself is sought out by the ever-loyal Snarvil. Who has heard lizardman drums, and wonders if they herald trouble with the lizardmen. Did they pay the toll?”



“I thought of doing so but [sotto voce] we’re in a party that won’t pay tribute(1) to foreign gods.”

“Gods? That was just a toll(2)… and then they attacked you?”

“Yes… you’re looking at me as if you don’t believe me, Snarvil. But I assure you lizardfolk did come up behind us, with weapons. You weren’t there.

“But – you’ll be able to guide us through, to where we can apologise and pay reparations.”



Thoughts of the trail and other options

Thomas decides to use his orisons to purify water taken from the swamp, minimising the need for fire. A small fire inside a tent dries necessaries off for the morrow.

On watch Snarvil returns to the subject of not needing him. During this time, Snarvil briefs Barky on the directions required to get to goblin lake.

Edgar returns optimistically to the chance of negotiating. “The lizardmen will settle. They’re pretty cold-blooded, aren’t they, Snarvil?”

“Ah hah hah hah.”

“I’m not with you? …But the alternative would be to return all the way back out, disguise ourselves as a different party, and start from scratch.”

[This is a valid option – we would also have the option of hiring the non-fanatic ranger – but no-one takes Edgar up on it.]

Seeing no-one is interested in this practical suggestion Edgar advises Thomas of his spell weighting and takes his place.


Party order: Barky and Snarvil, then a short gap, then Thomas so he can direct the fight, Oswald, Edgar, Belmont, and the mule team. Siward is still rearguard.


Lizardman combat I

The expedition almost immediately runs into a lizardman blocking force and lizardman flanking attack. Belmont, in position behind Edgar, wisely delays and deals with the flankers. They all miss, luckily for Edgar.

Thomas uses his Calm Emotions, but since he has to chant continuously can’t direct the fight. But it does halt a couple of attackers. At the front and flank enough harm is inflicted that the lizardmen retreat.

The expedition reviews and Edgar reminds the others that the point of that Calm Emotions spell is to enable us to parley, and is no use if the fight has already begun. Barky is unconvinced.


Obligations, part three

Snarvil now feels that lizardman hostility is so evident that he must leave.

“Why would they blame you?” Edgar asks.

“In the heat of battle… mistakes can be made, and then next thing you know you’re a kebab! I think Barky understands the instructions I gave him, and I can leave you in his hands.”

“Let me run over the odd one or two instructions Barky passed on.”

This being done, Edgar proposes:

“Let’s agree on a separation plan. You hand back all the twine and clangers, I give you 10 gold coins.”

This being done Snarvil utters his benediction:

“Farewell – I shall remember you like this – not in a cooking-pot.”

And to Snarvil’s retreating back Edgar calls:

“May we meet again! And may all your wives lay many dozens of clutches of eggs!”

Thomas isn’t pleased about this departure but as Edgar explains it, you want the truly cowardly kobold to survive and breed his cowardice into his race.


Party order: as before, but without Snarvil

Lizardman combat II

The weather is overcast now, with scattered showers. The expedition next runs into a very similar lizardman blocking force and lizardman flanking attack.

Round 0: Barky evades back shouting the alarm. Javelins arc in, missing.

Round 1: Barky runs forward and attacks, cutting at a shielded lizardman but having his blow parried off. Belmont holds and again this is wise. He strikes the nearest flank attacker as it sea-lions up out of the swamp, but it stays in the fight. Edgar blesses Celric’s shade as his bracers parry off a lizardman! Oswald is scratched by a claw. Thomas attempts casting in combat but fails his caster check and loses the spell. Edgar backs off and blinds the blocking force with Glitterdust. They flee back into the swamp.

Round 2: Barky runs back and joins the melee. Belmont connects, putting the wounded lizardman down. The other two lizardmen flee.


Lizardman Combat III

The final combat of the day is tougher.

Round 0: Barky misses the ambush and a surprise round of javelins catches everyone. Both blocking and flanking lizardmen are more numerous. Barky Thomas and Siward are wounded and Hodd the muleteer falls. Barky nearly bisects one lizardman as they race in past him to swarm the mid-party! Two more flank him! He twists lithely – almost pantherishly – to avoid their attacks and is struck again.

Round 1: The lizardmen attacking the mid-party attempt to push the armoured types into the swamp. Oswald throws one back. Thomas throws up his Bless. Belmont fails to throw back the lizardman attacking Edgar. Oswald uses his halberd against one, striking well. Edgar steps back and Sleeps two of the flankers.

Round 2: Blocking lizardmen pull back. Barky steps back defensively, in support of the mid-party. The flanking lizardmen still conscious wound Thomas twice but Belmont, the pressure eased by two fallen lizardmen, advances and strikes down one of the flankers. Thomas unselfishly heals Barky. Oswald heavily wounds another flanker. Edgar drops a second Sleep on the flankers and two more fall. Edgar, now next to the fallen Hodd, fishes out the captured Cure Light potion.

Round 3: Lizardmen flee. The expedition is happy to let them. Belmont retrieves a large stiffened hide shield. Then a backup large shield.

Hodd is brought back from the brink by Cure Minor Wounds and helped towards consciousness with the Cure Light potion, but more will be needed.

Making an early camp, they lay out a perimeter. And as Edgar sounds out the other share-partners on scratching ‘parley’ signs around the camp in draconic, the session ends.


(1) Tribute: Edgar means, payment from the position of supplicant to a local power. This is also known as mail, an exaction for going about one’s business. The root of the word blackmail. 

(2) Toll: Snarvil means, a day-to-day transaction levied for going about one’s business. Pretty much the same as paying mail. Maybe more justifiable in the eyes of Hieroneous furioso and just-plain-mad Cuthbert.

This hairsplitting is relevant because of who is in the party. Possibly with Mesym out of the picture we may not be killed by ‘my character wouldn’t do that’ syndrome. Stay tuned!

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SB1.08: Into the lizardmen’s great northern swamp

The first part of the session involves some expeditionary decisions. Luckily our GM has done quite a lot of homework on this so our choices are simplified. I’ve listed the results briefly below. Players (such as me) who haven’t assigned characters level 3 gains also do that.

The characters for this session:

  • Thomas, cleric of Cuthbert
  • Belmont, paladin of Hieroneous
  • Barky, southron
  • Edgar, wizard

NPCs already with the party

  • Oswald, halberdier
  • Mesym, ranger(1)
  • Vert, cooshee

Added to the expedition:

  • Hodd the muleteer and
  • Siward the guard;
  • Jenny the mule and
  • Bess the mule.

The men get 30gp each  up front. Tools of various kinds, and tents, go with the mules. Jenny has a crowbar, sledge and splitter, while Bess has a spade and woodsman’s axe, for example.

Threads in play

  1. Seek vengeance on the Hextorite slavers: trace a route through the great swamp to where they pass into the Duchy over the Dragon Mountains
  2. Locate the ancient fort that wards the pass (possibly the same pass), with or without its gold hoard
  3. In both cases, do not cross into the Duchy

Into the swamp

“I think I have found the way,” announces our guide Mesym, striding up crossbow at rest. “I cannot be sure, but the secret of tracking is to reckon where the quarry must go.”

In response to the general questions he further supplies:

“It’s part under water, but is a path one or two abreast. Visibility will be reeds and occasionally more if you count standing on the odd piece of dry ground.”

The damp expedition descends the last slopes from the foothills down into the swamp, under leaden and usually raining skies. All are glad they invested in sturdy Explorer fit-outs. They pass what is most likely a border marker/idol, and decide not to investigate it or place “offerings” in it.

Party order: Mesym and Barky, then a short gap, then Oswald, Edgar, Thomas, Belmont, and the mule team. Siward is rearguard.

It has taken us 3/4 hour to get this far with minis chosen for each.

As Mesym promised the trail is very wet, but firm enough underfoot to allow a regular gait. The expedition makes good progress and camps on reasonably dry ground, with a cheery campfire to dry feet off.


The ever-victorious army, part one

Night is interrupted by an attack! Mesym, on watch with Barky, shouts in annoyance as a kobold-directed pebble beans him.

Waking, Edgar (who speaks draconic) hears:

“The ever-victorious army of the swamp rules all! Mow them down my braves!”

Various party members creep out of tents and in Barky’s case (as he is also ready on watch, and has heard something) covers the camp opposite the apparent danger! On the off-chance, Edgar tries:

“Why are you firing on us? We’re the mercenaries come to help you against the lizardmen!”

It doesn’t seem to work. More stones come in, and Mesym wears another couple. He begins wading across to the elevation the kobolds are slinging from.

“Your warlord will be furious!” Edgar persists.

“I’m the fucking warlord! Keep pouring it on my braves!”

Barky is right: the real attack comes from the rear where two punts ferry in kobolds intent on the mules. Barky rages and leaps across onto a punt, sinking it, and Oswald and Siward support him from land. All but one kobold is drowned or killed.

Mesym finishes wading across, destroys a few kobolds including quite possibly the warlord, and the others flee. He has been bruised by several sling-stones and Belmont and Thomas heal him.


This marks the half-way point in the session.


Lizardmen lying in wait provide loot

Edgar nearly gets into action when Barky signals potential ambush the next day. Enemy seem to be hiding beyond a small rise. But by the time Edgar and Thomas have made ready the lizardmen waiting in ambush have barked, and Belmont has charged. Barky follows.

A brief skirmish deals with a couple of lizardmen – and Barky discovers that charging reduces defences and suffers a couple of serious clawings – but again there is a rear force where the real danger lies! The uneven terrain creates perils – Barky discovers a chest-deep step-off – but eventually enough fighting types get back in time to save Hodd and Siward.

Edgar has the last lizardman hypnotized and looting his comrades but decides things are getting too complicated when party members want to kill it. They kill it.

The loot includes steel-bladed handaxes made in the Duchy, some oil for weapons or armour, and a bandolier of 60pp.


An ancient bridge  is of interest, but a cross-trail puzzles

The following day, the expedition passes near a lichen-covered stone bridge. There are no tracks to be seen marking it and the trail leads away, so they pass on.

During the afternoon Mesym calls a halt.

“Bugger me days!(2) A crosstrail, plenty of tracks, and no way of knowing which is ours!”

The trails lead NE-SW and NW-SE. Discussion follows but at least it is brief. The group majority vote NE.

Camp is set without arriving anywhere in particular.


The ever-victorious army, part two

The NE track, followed the next day, leads to a mere dock, and a few kobolds. All but one flee, but that last one looks at Edgar in surprise:


“Oh – I remember you!” Edgar exclaims, “you’re our eh… helpful ally…”

“Snarvil am I! Snarvil the loyal and brave! Snarvil the wanderer!”

Snarvil explains the geography. Not clearly. However the main point is that the trail north can only be reached by trekking SW through lizardman land, then by taking to boat from the goblin docks. From his say-so, the boats will carry the mules. The party brings Snarvil along. At the van Mesym mutters darkly about ‘petting a snake’ and ‘he’ll turn on us.’


Peril of the harpy’s call

This night’s camp is on less-hospitable ground and a number of islets offer all manner of cover to possible enemies. Oswald bagses not standing watch with Mesym. Belmont agrees to do it, but just this once.

During the night, Oswald hears an enchanting siren song and it is clear, as the others crawl out of bedding and wander towards the sound, they are all bespelled. He tackles Edgar, who snaps out of it and looks around blankly.

“There’s no sign of the ranger and everyone is wandering into the swamp!”

“You tackle Belmont I’ll tackle Thomas!”

Edgar rushes Thomas, and bounces off him. Thomas walks through the swamp towards a distant light. [A successful stop allows a re-test on Will, with +2] Oswald is more successful with Belmont, who, being on watch with Mesym, is armoured and slow. Belmont stops Thomas from going towards the siren song. Running after him, they catch the southron. There’s no sign of Mesym.

Much laughter as we immediately write our ranger off. The GM, who has done such a good job alienating us from the ranger, now has to remind us we have good characters and can’t just say ‘we lost a ranger but on the other hand we lost Mesym, let’s call it a wash.’ 

The mule half of the expedition seem unaffected, so Edgar recommends they “mind” Snarvil while the fighting half look for Mesym. First, they’ll need to gather a few things…

Hearing words like ‘gather a few things’ prompts Belmont to charge ahead without a light and in heavy armour. He gets what he deserves, falling into a sinkhole.

Luckily for him Oswald has seen where he disappeared and dives in, eventually assisting him back up onto land minus his shield and sword.

Meanwhile the source of the siren song, a creature with the face and breasts of a woman but the feathered body and claws of a vulture, swoops with an evil scream of laughter! Edgar, who has followed up with his lantern, hits her with Glitterdust then Tasha’s hideous laughter, and ropes her out of the water with an animated rope. To where the people with weapons can kill her.

And as Belmont begins thinking about deep-water gear retrieval, the session ends.

(1) Our GM would like to make it clear that Mesym isn’t just aggravation on two legs, he does useful things like noticing ambushes and tracking enemies, while lecturing characters on what they ought to be able to do.

(2) Our goddie boys frop the f-bomb pretty freely, but if translated from NZ culture to fantasy, this would be a mildly rude word.

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The Broken Land: Leaves in an autumnal gale

The Broken Land concludes here!

A DCC/Mythic solo play (with other emulators as required)

Episode Three: Flight to Seevers Mill


  • Binye and Elyn, L4 Thieves
  • Borer, L4 Dwarf

Threads in play: 

  1. Now that they have not only located the uruk lord’s base, they have bowed before his very throne: report the location of the uruk lord’s to the Templars!
  2. Minor thread: Scout the hill-giant steading 

NPCs in play:

  1. Uruk lord’s army
  2. Lady Danforth’s faction
  3. The templars

Chaos is 7 as Binye Borer and Elyn, with their pack-beasts Muley and Newboy loaded down with equipment treasure and rations, debouch from the Torn Mountain range into… well, let’s see!


They’re comin’ this way!

Clear of the mountain switchbacks the rogues take stock. And realise they are lost, and have probably been headed the wrong way since they left the uruks, or since Brad started guiding them.

“Th’ one dee-rection I do know is north. Rivers, or at least run-offs, are like ta be found thet way. South, I never heard no good of. East or west – we like ta die a’ thirst.”

Conserving water and keeping the mountains to their right the three lead their mules through a badlands. Though none of them are wilderness-born, they all have something to bring to surviving. Borer’s feeling for rock formation, Binye’s animal knowledge, and Elyn’s herbal knowledge all help.

[They all roll middling to poorly on these knowledge areas; but all roll exceptionally well on STA]

But what really saves them is the sound of a large body of troops, behind them and getting closer.

Binye wakes the other two and starts reloading the mules.

“They cain’t be follerin’ us?” Borer wonders, strapping on his breastplate.

“If th’ gunnes broke down, mebbe th’ goblins shifted blame onta us” Binye offers.

“Less s’posin’, more gittin’ away” Elyn growls, equally at a loss to explain what the horde is doing following them.

“We ain’t gonna have time ta load! Shee-it!!”

“Let’s jest ride th’ mules! Borer – with Elyn!”

Clutching the most valued of their possessions, cursing their ill fate, the rogues leave most of their hard-won loot in camp and flee on mule-back.


Because the tentative side-mission ‘scout the hill giant steading’ is still in play, I draft the scene for the Badlands of Slate, which will offer the chance to include the steading. I get an alteration, focus NPC action. The meaning is Punish Technology. Well, one possibility is that the rogues nobbled the gunnes.

Mythic: Are the gunnes useless? (50-50) No

The alternative to that is reading the meaning as the uruks punishing their enemies with technology.

Mythic: Are the uruks invading this way? (50-50) Yes!

LCK fails – they are not going to have time to plan

Will the rogues flee? (Likely) Yes, cascades to abandon business. That makes leaving gear behind pretty definite. I’ll still assume, or let dice tell me, that highly-portable items like gems and vials are kept.

Chaos rises to 8

New thread added: warn the settlements in the uruks’ path


Woods, where trees can’t be seen for them

A beeline away from pursuing uruks appears to be pretty nigh due north, and that brings them – thankfully as the sun climbs – to woods. The mules perk up and the trio push on until darkness makes it impossible to navigate north.

The rogues make a dry and cold camp, and chew young shoots to ease thirst. Muley and Newboy are able to crop undergrowth; but then, the air settles or shifts somehow, and the two mules break free and away!

“I’m guessin’ they smelled water,” Binye opines. “Ah’m a-gonna foller on. Borer, guess yer scout f’r once?”

“Why? ‘Cause all us dwarfs’re legendary tree-huggers?”

“Aw c’mon Borer, we bin through a lot t’gether,” Binye encourages, “hell, ya know Ah’d do it if’n I could.”

[The dice have deserted the rogues, as far as camping stuff and handling animals goes – but Binye makes a good PRS check and Borer scores a nat 20 for ‘scouting in the dark forest with Dwarf eyes’.]

Chaos rises to 9


I know where we might be!

The mules are not dead! Smarter than horses, they seem to have drunk enough then turned to crop from riverside greenery.

The rogues thankfully replenish canteens, freshen in what seems to be an all-year stream, and face some decisions.

It’s evidence of timber felling that suggests where they’ve ended up, and that they should push on.

“OK, yeah it could be Seever’s Mill or Joetown,” Elyn sums up. “I can’t say I recollect much about the woods south of Joetown, ‘cept we were on a rough road, an’ we ain’t never seen Seever’s Mill.”

“We foller th’ stream,” Binye argues again, “an we come ta somethin’ like a town. Then we warn ’em they’s uruks a-hoofin it right smack this way, an’ we keep a-foggin’ outta hyar.”

“Yep, m’ godlike trackin’ powers agree, let’s us git along downstream an’ find whar-all we are.”

Mules properly bridled again, the trio make the best time they can following the stream itself and rough forester trails. The stream broadens and leads to a fork; and there’s a small town at the fork; and by that time, logging activity is obvious. They’ve reached Seever’s Mill!

Chaos drops to 8


Arrival of an inopportune enemy

How do you go about telling a town they are in danger of invasion, when you are three scarecrows with two mules between them?

Logging camps they pass aren’t interested. As they walk tiredly into the town square and look for a marshal or sheriff, Borer picks up on some fancy mounts from out of town, tethered outside the best in-town lodgings.

Binye walks casually over to inspect them and Elyn brushes as much trail-dust as she can off her outfit, and walks into the inn. Borer winds the mule leads firmly round one brawny wrist and sits down on the duckboards, against the inn, closes his eyes, and becomes a dwarf hitching-post.


Some minutes later Elyn and Binye compare notes. The retinue, out of Dolem’s Spire, of one Lady Danforth. With a killing gent included in the retinue.

“We have to git. Roust Borer.”

The scene for Seever’s Landing gets an alteration, focus NPC action, Danforth, meaning attach portals. Which is really obscure until I read it as ‘has entered.’ 

More? Attach enemies. Have the uruks already arrived? (VUnlikely) No. So this is still the Danforth faction? (Likely) Yes.

Mythic: Has Lady Danforth herself arrived? (Unlikely) No, cascading to imprison plans. 

I also use Location Crafter to paint some scenery in, such as the forest, the time of day and so on. I have no pre-generated weather chart for this time of year.

+2AP, the rogues are 30 shy of L5


Episode Four: The bridge to Joetown

This ain’t no deathwatch!

From Seever’s Mill, the Bigmoss takes shorn logs down to the Sourwater past the woods south of Joseph’s Inlet. Locals reckon it to be sixty mile to Dolem’s Spire. Before the Sourwater, the main trail crosses the Bigmoss over a stone bridge, and heads away to Joseph’s Inlet.

But there is a quicker route to Joseph’s Inlet! An overland trail, seldom taken in these dangerous times, runs directly from Seever’s Mill to a fork in the trail not far west of Briar Keep: if they turn north at that fork, they are on the main trail back to Joseph’s Inlet.

“We got choices. If we give up th’ mules an’ take a chance that the Templars ‘r’ expectin’ us, we c’n boat downriver all th’ way ta th’ Spire.

“But, if we wanna keep our options on th’ mules – which same lets us git ta hell away fr’m th’ Templars – we gotta head east across ta warn Joetown.”

“An’ jest sayin’ – another option is ta head west inta th’ badlands agin.”

“Cy’s back in Joetown.”

“I wuz jest speckerlatin’ it’s another option!”

“Let’s us have one more try to roust th’ folks hyar – then git. I ain’t a-gonna burn alongside them.”

This is a framing scene for leaving Seever’s Mill. Which, for once, is clear. Which means the half-possible showdown with Lady Danforth’s top assassin has been avoided.

As usual I use likelihood to determine which way they head. Including west into the badlands!

Chaos drops to 7


To the boats! But wait – Templars are where?

“I warn ya – if’n ya don’t git downriver y’all be dead by tomorrow sunrise!”

So saying Borer goes to swing up behind Elyn, and Newboy kicks him stoutly in the ribs. To the loud guffaws of idling foresters and guards Borer picks himself up painfully and the rogues have yet another conference. Then they turn away from the trail and head to the boat dock.

As they bargain for a trade – mules for boar passage to Dolem’s Spire – their tiredness makes them careless. One of the dockers catches the word ‘templar’.

“Them templars? Yep, I guess ya would wanta steer clear of th’ Briarwood. I hear they bin makin’ life tough fer… some folks… over thet way.”

“Wait! Ya meantasay – th’ Templars ‘r’ over to Briar Keep? Them same templars? Sorta arseholes in fancy armour?”

“I dunno ’bout no one character, but I do know they come outta th’ Spire. Ya not… lookin’ fer them?”

“Mister we surely are! Cancel th’ deal – unless – Borer – time ta decide – is this where we split up?”

Borer rubs his bruised ribs and frowns, thinking. Then he decides:

“We’ll give th’ mules one more chance.”

“Sure,” Binye agrees. “We’ll mebbe split up when we git ta th’ bridge, one headin’ ta warn th’ templars – much as I hate ta say it – an’ us other two headin’ ta warn Joetown.”

This will-we won’t-we is generated from Borer getting a nat 1 on ride, then:

Mythic: Will the rogues split up here? (Unlikely) No

Do they take a boat? (Likely) Yes!

Then at the new scene: boat-dock, I get alteration, focus move towards a thread. This pretty much locks in reporting to the templars. You may or may not recall that the templars shifted their forward base to Briar Keep. 

Mythic: Does the dock crew know that the templars are in Briar Keep? (SLikely) Yes.

More? Intolerance of leadership, then heal the innocent. So I read this as the rogues begrudgingly deciding to save Joetown despite the templars. They will need to ride across, then split at the bridge, as Binye outlines.

Chaos zips up and drops back, to 7 again

+4AP across these scenes


Dust spells a broken journey

Borer may have managed to ride pillion, but mules aren’t horses, and he and Elyn are not lightweight. Behind them the growing dust-cloud tells its own story. They are being pursued and if it’s not uruks it must be Lady Danforth’s gentry.

“I c’n see th’ tree-line gittin’ near,” Binye shouts back. “I’m gonna fog Muley hyar up t’ th’ bridge an git set up. Ride past me as if I ain’t thar an’ drop off outta sight, come back. Got me?”

The scene of road-to-the-bridge gets an alteration: ambiguous event. Meaning expose a project.

Mythic: So the cat’s out of the bag? (Likely) Yes

More? Arrive enemies.

So these are the faction they just left in Seever’s Mill? (Likely) Yes.

Chaos rises back to 8


A killing gent ends his travels

Helmut Hartman: T6, STR09 STA09 AGI14 INT08 PRS10 LCK10, F+2 R+4 W+2

Helmut is confident – his prey is tired and riding not even one mule per person. They may have gotten a good start but he and his bounty killers will haul them down before they can reach Briar Keep.

An arrow arcs down and sinks through his sturdy hide armour. He wrenches it out angrily and shouts:

“We have them! They’re at the bridge! Rush them before they can shoot again!”

He reins his horse back a little. A man should not keep dogs and bark himself! Then his vision seems to haze over, and as Helmut’s eyes clear he finds himself in desperate melee with any number of ferocious illkin!

“Ware left! Ware behind! They’re on us from the trees! Strike you fools – or we are dead!”

Helmut kicks his fine steed forward among his men, or where they should be – and realises they have become lost in the heaving mass! Only one chance – cut his way clear and flee over the bridge!

Cutting left and right he rides partway clear, but the blades of the enemy sink in and as his horse clears the far end of the bridge, he falls, bleeding out.

The bounty killers halt, confused. Two hastily begin stanching the cuts he gave them. One swears:

“Damn him ta th’ hells! Y’all think he wuz in th’ vizier’s pay all along?”

“He went crazy, started babblin’ about someone back behind us…”

“Well that’s our pay. Ya wanna try fer them thieves on th’ bridge or mebbe parley fer loot shares?”

The battle is a bit of an anticlimax because in checking what the rogues salvaged and what Noregz had on him I get an hallucinogen, and that Binye does have a goblin shortbow. Looking back at Shrouded Fen I see that the hallucinogen makes you relive a past scene at the location. I mix this effect with a typical confusion spell.

Helmut makes an 02 on SV, and though his ride and attack rolls are good, the first five bounty killers all hit in response to his attack.

Chaos drops to 7


Binye’s bluff

“Yep, we c’n talk. On’y thing is, them templars know’d we about ta be hyar an’ I guess ifn ya lissen hard y’all c’n hear th’ first scout.”

The bounty killers do not wait: abandoning their pay the turn tail!

Binye grins as Elyn rides Newboy up, points to the dead body by the horse:

“Ya late! Let’s do us some lootin’ then I’m a-gonna ketch me thet horse!”

Binye makes his PRS check, the bounty killers roll an 01.

Chaos drops to 6

+4AP and +10AP for fouling up Lady Danforth’s plans


Episode Five: and Finally

We part ways here – for now

Borer straddles Newboy and grumbles:

“If’n them templars kill me, I’m a-comin’ back ta haunt ya.”

“You’ll be fine,” Elyn assures him. “We’ll head to Sidewinder Creek an’ hole up… we’ll see ya there.”

Binye, pleased to bursting, paces his fine new horse up and down. He waves a jaunty farewell as Borer clumsily guides Newboy west and south to Briar Keep:

“An’ don’t fergit, Borer, we agreed livin’ rich an’ handsome is th’ best revenge!”

Elyn mounts up and mutters:

“Two of us with our heads screwed on Muley, let’s stick together.”

This is an alteration to ‘leaving the bridge’ with ambiguous focus. Meaning expose the public. 

Mythic: Let the public go hang or sound the alarm? I get sound the alarm, cascading to neglect a plot.

Mythic: Do the rogues toy with that revenge again? (50-50) Yes.

Chaos drops to 5


The Uruk Lord is at the gates! Gitalong!

Perhaps the good folk of Joseph’s Inlet would pay scant heed to two wild-eyed riders who arrive yelling about doom and destruction. But a powerful, red-headed ogress, one of the teamsters, seems to believe them and soon wagons are being piled high with valuables. Seeing wagons being loaded for evacuation, naturally some prudent citizens hire boat passage as well. Very soon there’s a mass panic, and the townsfolk flee north!

As Cy whips the team onward over the Bigmoss bridge some few hours later, Elyn and Binye crane back. Uruk outriders are already on the rough trail beside the Bigmoss! Cy snorts confidently:

“Pay them no mind! Ain’t no scabby orc can outrun ma team! Next stop Sidewinder!”

And with the cracking of Cy’s whip, Elyn and Binye can relax and reckon Borer’s chances.

Bonus AP for saving Joseph’s Inlet and warning Briar Keep takes the rogues to L5

The end!

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