8 hours ago
Thursday, January 22, 2009
A short game
We played again the other night. Not a very long session due to the girls having to get to bed early, it was a school night. But I thought I'd jot down what happened if for nothing else than to keep the story current. (And to have a place to reference what's gone before.)
Isabella - Female Human Fighter level 2 (my wife)
Ember - Female 1/2 elven Cleric level 2 (youngest daughter)
Safira - Female Ice Elf level 2 (eldest daughter)
After emerging from the woods and saying goodbye to Fura, the characters spent the evening at the Bent Hook. A small celebration for a newly married couple was occurring at the Inn and there were more people crowding the common room than was the norm. Ember, Safira and Isabella stayed up for a while and observed the festivities, but noting the hour, and their exhaustion, they soon thereafter went to bed.
Next morning they descended the stairs and were met with the sight of the Krieger triplets sitting in the common room without a beer in their hands! Belinda, Fura and the other 2 henchmen were sitting around a table, talking amongst themselves.
Their destination? The Hermit.
Convincing the two henchmen that crossing the river on the back of a giant gar was slightly more difficult and expensive (due to a roll of 12 on the morale dice) than it should have been, but eventually they were convinced that it would be safer than crossing the "Toll Bridge".
Once upon the opposite shore the party of 10 decided upon a marching order and cautiously proceeded into the woods along the faint game trail that led to the witch. About 2 hours along the trail the party cut due north, following the witch's directions.
The overcast sky provided dim illumination under the canopy of trees and the terrain turned decidedly more hilly and rough. The witch had said that the hermit lived about a day's march due north, so at noon, when the group broke for lunch, Safara shimmied up a tree in order to see if she might be able to spot the tall hill upon which sat the large tree.
Surprisingly enough she determined that they were actually heading in the wrong direction. They somehow must have let the terrain turn them a bit, instead of due north the group had been heading in a more north easterly direction. Safira was looking at the ridge sitting nearly right in front of her, instead of off to her right, as it should have been.
After the meal the group backtracked a ways, climbed another tree and got their bearings. At about this time the cloud cover thinned enough for them to see the sun, which also helped. Every hour or so Safira climbed a tree, just to make certain they were still headed in the proper direction.
Many hours of marching later, with supper time fast approaching, Safira climbed a tree once more, and this time she spotted, not too far off in the distance an obviously tall hill with a enormous tree sitting astride it. The party set off in that general direction.
As they marched down the trail, with Isabella leading the way, a rustle in the brush alerted the barbarian to company. She froze and warily watched the area. The alert group luckily caught, and immediately emulated her actions. All was quiet.
An enormous mountain lion glided out of the brush, head low to the ground, in the opposite direction. It didn't seem to notice the invaders as it was stalking some unknown prey, drawing its attention elsewhere.
After the large cat disappeared into the far brush, the group proceeded. They noticed immediately though that the area was rife with large cat tracks. Seems this beast likes to hunt the area. Ember quickly surmises that they are encroaching upon the large cat's territory and that they should be extremely wary.
When they finally come upon the large hill they realize just by glancing along its bottom that it's oddly shaped. They decide that a route around the circumference might better determine what they're dealing with. Surprisingly it seems that the hill is an ancient round step pyramid that has eroded with time and weather to appear as a hill. The giant fig tree atop the "hill" also contributed greatly to the erosion.
Again, the large cat's prints were spotted all around the hill, so Fura decided that he would take the Krieger brothers, Belinda and the other two porters around the hill in an attempt to watch for the cat and to look at the hill more closely, for a possible entrance. The others will ascend the "hill" and make contact with the hermit.
Three quarters of the way up the hill the adventurers break through the canopy and can now see across the tops of the rolling forest. And they can also see that there's a large hole of some sort in the side of the massive fig tree. As they came closer they could hear a low growl emanate from the hole in the tree.
The head of the puma appeared as the cat slunk slowly forward out of the shadowed rent in the tree. A querulous voice asked who was there...and to step forward and announce your intentions. As the cat slowly approached a gnarled hand appeared from the shadows to lay casually upon the back of the enormous mountain lion.
After brief introductions the old man, presumably the hermit, cursed that he'd been found again but was willing to answer a question. They three asked if he had heard anything about the relics of St. George of Gyxag. The hermit grumbled a bit and said that he'd heard the name St. George...but he didn't know anything off hand about any relics. But, if the party was willing to come back at dawn he'd see if he could come up with a better answer.
They agree...and that's where we stopped.