Aonghasan wakes with a start. The room is dark, but twilight shines in through a partition in the curtains. He hears the door close, and a course chuckle, and then silence. He wraps the big downy pillow around his throbbing head and rolls over to get some more sleep.
But before he can get comfortable, there is a strange cackle and a flutter and there is a fowl astride him on the covers, pecking and scratching and crowing like a banshee!
"Gaaaaah! My hair! Get this beast out of my hair! Basilisk! Cockatrice! Barnyard animal!"
Cogburn captures the hijinks on a hidden trollcam, and the video of Aonghasan alternately chasing and being chased by the chicken gets upwards of 77,000,000 hits on TrollTube, spawning an avalanche of mash-ups and spoofs, including a parody song by the Gregory Brothers.
Aonghasan wakes with a start, assaulted by the smell of foetid earth and brackish water. It is night, and a dirty wool throbe clings to his clammy skin underneath in the breezeless muggy hut.
He steps out into the cacophony of gibbering frogs, toads, insects, and other squamous life, looking for someone-- but who?. The hot darkness presses down upon him as he picks his way through the blasted heath with belching pools of mud on either side.
Ahead of him he sees what at first he mistakes for a marshlight, and then he notes the diminutive, huddled form holding the lantern aloft on a long stick, loping along purposefully through the gloom. A dense cloud of gnats hovers around the light. He follows.
The gnarled little figure moves swiftly through brambles and tall marsh grasses, disappearing into a deep pool of muck from which only the lantern-pole rises. Aonghasan hesitates, and then plunges after-- the dark water comes up to the elf's chest, and loathsome things squirm into his clothes.
The silent guide emerges from the pool, and begins clambering, spider-like, up a promontory of shattered boulders and scree. Still the hood is sunken in front of the figure, and the right hand clutches the lantern-pole even while climbing. 'Nasan follows, but the figure disappears over a ledge.
When Aonghasan reaches the top of the promontory, he sees his guide kneeling before a large, twisted tree that looks almost like a great twisted claw reeked up out of the cloven earth as if to scratch down the stars. Pausing, he watches, but the figure does not stir.
In the flickering light, he recognizes the hem of the guide's cloak, embroidered with Narshnaga's sign in the Elder Tongue. «Narush-N'agha», he whispers when he sees the mark. Still, the goblin witch does not stir.
"Sestra," he says more loudly, using the affectionate title Narshnaga claimed during his tutelage with her. "Sestra, are you sleeping?"
He steps into the noisome cloud of gnats. As he examines her, he sees that the cloak is threadbare and decomposing, and the body is desiccated. He holds his breath as he pulls back the cowl, but he is startled to find no hideous face there gazing upon him with dead eyes.
He follows her arm with his eyes to the skeletal hand, clutching a handful of earth. Inches away, the lantern-pole leans against the tree. There, atop the pole, a lantern hangs gourd-like from a shock of hair, still attached to a leathery scalp. A trail of candle-wax hangs from the fanged jaw of a child-sized skull, but the wick is burned down to a cold nub, and the hollow thing sheds no more light.
Aonghasan takes the lantern-pole and conjures a Willowisp to fill the skull again with a cool bluish light, stepping forth into the black forest.
Post by monstermike on Apr 12, 2011 21:28:59 GMT -5
Aonghasan wakes with a start. The sun is rising over the foetid swamp. A single stork glides from out of the sunrise and lands in the brackish water a few yards away. It tucks one leg up and preens the feathers behind its wings, then turns and stares directly at the loremaster with one orange eye. Then with a bellowing croak, it spreads its wings and takes again to the air, leaving Aonghasan filled with hope and wonder.
Post by monstermike on Jul 22, 2011 11:55:20 GMT -5
Crouched behind the barricade of ore-wagons, Owynn tries to overhear the whispered conversation between Seagal and his captains. Sweat trickles down his face and irritates the scratches and minor wounds and burns that criss-cross his body. His sword arm is sore and his muscles ache with bruises and bone-weary fatigue. Although he knows that Seagal is mere minutes away from issuing an ultimatum, and once again he will be in thick of battle with these hellish creatures, Owynn's mind slips away to a happy place.
His eyes shut for a moment and he sees himself on a sandy beach. The weather is warm and clear. Beautiful women walk about and frolic in the salt water wearing next to nothing. Owynn reclines in his comfortable beach chair as a serving person brings him a cold beverage - rum mixed with something fizzy and sweet, with pieces of ice in it. The lull of the surf and the sound of the zephyrs through the palm fronds over his head begin to soothe his anxiety as he sips the interesting drink. No worries, no troubles, no pain.
As he melts into his chair, two of the beautiful topless women come up to him, laughing. They begin to massage him with a sweet smelling oil...
"Owynn!" A hard elbow digs into his sore ribs. "Owynn, wake up!" Pan hisses. "I don't know what they're planning, but it's going to happen soon. Stay alert, man!" The grumpy satyr turns away from him to check on the Titans. Once again, the dark, the damp, and the smell of coal dust assail his senses. Next to him, a dwarf farts unapologetically.