Post by monstermike on May 20, 2011 14:13:10 GMT -5
A few minutes after the first party leaves to deal with dragons, Bitsa, Tenkar, and Ozenda get the large group of dwarves quieted down and leave their room. They walk past the kitchen and its smells and sounds of cooking. The next door in the hall is the goblin guard's quarters. Bitsa pauses to listen at the door, and hears several voices inside, excitedly discussing their heroism in the "Great Battle at the Gate".
Knowing that the dwarves are normally free to move about the quarters level on their off-shift time for food and toilet needs, Bitsa heads back to the army of Titans and quietly breaks them into groups of five. Holding his finger to his lips to indicate silence, he sends each group of five to walk as quietly as possible past the goblin guard's door. It takes a nerve-wracking couple of minutes, but soon they are all beyond the door with the goblin guards being none the wiser.
Tenkar leads the group past Ozenda's former prison and into the intersection with the decline shaft. Everyone notices that the ore-carts are moving again, loaded with gold ore and coal as usual. Tenkar motions them all into the decline shaft while Ozenda counts heads. When they are all grouped and ready, Tenkar points to the West and they begin the long walk down to the gold mines.
Game time 4/4 19:50
Please post your next move by noon Monday, May 23.
Post by ProfGremlin on May 23, 2011 18:37:38 GMT -5
"Tenkar, loosen them up a little," Bitsa tugs on the dwarf leader's sleeve. "See if there's maybe a song they sing or stories they tell as they head to work. We don't want to draw attention by being too tense and quiet." The hobb does his best to stay near clumps of dwarves trusting their slightly taller stature and bulk to hide his slight form. As his gaze takes in the decline shaft he has an eerie premonition of walking down a long, dark throat. Easy, now... don't you start getting jumpy or you'll have the whole lot of them spooked. Planning ahead, Bitsa considers slipping under one of the ore carts again as they approach the next intersection. Just in case new guards have been posted, I'll be able to get behind them...
Ozenda looks about her and begins to feel like a schoolmarm shepherding a group of littles. If this disguise does not work, she fingers the holey cloak and worn cap, this is going to be a rather short trip. The wizardress pitches her voice low to Tenkar and the other Titans, "If we come upon guards I may need a volunteer to play along. If our bluff of being sent down to catch up on production is called to question I shall say each of you have been fitted with a new slave collar. They are now invisible. I shall pretend to shrink one and my volunteer will get to pretend he is being choked. That should confuse the guards."
Ozenda's hand clenches upon the hilt of her sax, Skulking about through dark and odoriferous tunnels! I am not one of the Underdark! Salazar, you have a great deal to answer for!
I'll have the deep-fried battered pixie with balrog dipping sauce and a Hobgoblin ale.
Post by monstermike on May 24, 2011 16:39:04 GMT -5
The group continues down the decline shaft. Tenkar tells the dwarves to "Jist act natchural, like" and they begin talking quietly among themselves as they walk toward the gold mines.
As they reach the intersection with the gold-mining level, they are met by the patrolling orc guard left by Seagal. Surprise shows on his ugly face and he says, "Ere, you! It's not yer shift yet fer another four hours! What're you lads doing out and about?"
A voice from the middle of the pack responds, "Seagal ordered us ta start early like. Said we lost production what with all th' goings-on up topside, so usn's had ta help make up th' difference."
The guard looks at the throng of miners in the wavering lantern light, but he notices neither the missing neck-rings nor the presence of a few strangers in the crowd. "Awright, then. Get on with ya. Report to the Goblin Commander and let 'im know yer here. He'll assign yer tunnels."
Game time 4/4 20:00
Please post your next move by noon Wednesday, May 25. Sorry I'm so late on this one.
Post by ProfGremlin on May 24, 2011 21:49:51 GMT -5
Bitsa nods in response to Tenkars assessment, "I pretty much thought it would be much like releasing an avalanche, just kick it started and get out of the way." The hobb continues in his place of concealment amongst the dwarves and hopes that the next set of guards is as easy to convince as the last set.
Ozenda fumes How long did I languish in confinement? If those guards are the standard amongst Salazar's minions how is that I came to be in such a state? The spellcrafter casts her mind back to the delivery of the enchanted cooper's hoop she had made to Salazar's fortress. Treachery! Betrayal from the outset. A quote overheard in school comes to mind, 'No matter how subtle the wizard, a knife between the shoulder blades will seriously cramp his style'. Ozenda's lips thin The time is fast approaching to toss subtlety to the winds.
Ahead, the lights herald the next intersection.
I'll have the deep-fried battered pixie with balrog dipping sauce and a Hobgoblin ale.
Post by monstermike on May 26, 2011 10:53:20 GMT -5
In the coal pits, the orc guard hauls the two goblin prisoners to Captain Skullsplitter. "We found these two as prisoners of the dwarves. They say there's an armed party of intruders in the mines."
Skullsplitter examines the two goblins, both rather banged and bruised. "How many were there, and how armed?" he asks. The goblin commander replies "Six, no, ten! Maybe a dozen! Variously armed, but all very dangerous. They overpowered us quickly and moved up to the gold mines."
Skullsplitter's face goes into an even deeper scowl. "We must act quickly. You!" He shouts at the spare orc guard who was left patrolling by Seagal. "Take these two up to Seagal and Hrruuukkk Ptui immediately! The rest of you, come with me. Bring the skeleton crew of goblin guards on this level as well. We're going to find these intruders and make them pay the price in blood!"
Weapons ready, the orc captain, the thirteen orc guards, two goblin commanders, and five goblin guards begin to run up the decline shaft toward the gold mines.
Post by monstermike on May 26, 2011 11:00:40 GMT -5
As the large group of miners continues their descent to the coal-pits, Bitsa is nervously watching the lit intersection ahead. Soon the lantern lit area is filled with a group of orc guards who begin to run up the decline shaft.
The dwarves see them coming and set up a howl. At first, Tenkar fears that it is a howl of terror as the miners begin to run. But he quickly realizes that is in fact a howl of rage. The miners rush toward the oncoming guards, picks and shovels held ready for fighting.
The gap rapidly closes between the two groups - 50 meters, then 20, then 10.
Post by ProfGremlin on May 28, 2011 13:37:23 GMT -5
Bitsa's heart skips a beat as the Titan's howl reverberates in the suddenly-too-small tunnel. The intermittent pools of flickering light and shadow lend a primal, gut-wrenching fear to the rhythmic, relentless tread of the guards boots the sound reverberating though the tunnel's rock. As the dwarves lift their tools and charge, months of repressed rage finally given voice in ululation, the hobb spins and ducks under the nearest ore cart traveling down the decline shaft. He prays to whatever gods may be so inclined to listen that the trolls manning the huge turnstiles stayed at their posts. Hanging upside-down under the cart, once again legs over the axle, hands in a white-knuckle grip, the cart proceeds with what now feels like agonizing slowness.
Ozenda looks out over the surging tide of the dwarven miners, tools raised as flotsam tossed upon a storm-wracked sea. Finally...She whips the moth-eaten cap and cloak off, tossing them disdainfully aside. As she shakes out her hair her gaze catches the lanterns flickering light. Ozenda roots her stance in place, hands lifted before her, werelight flickering over her fingers in the dimness. She stretches out with her will and gathers the elemental forces to her. Streams of flame lift from the lanterns and coalesce above the heads of the charging dwarves. She screams an invocation, her rage at having had her self ripped away by Salazar matching the heart of the flame filling her vision, "Ivocarum Ignes!" The wizard casts the flame at the front rank of the charging guards.
Post by monstermike on May 31, 2011 11:23:27 GMT -5
The two forces crash together, the sounds of weapons hitting armor and flesh mingled with shouts of rage. Ozenda gathers her energies and calls forth a burst of flame. The jet of fire briefly lights the tunnel, but only singes the cheek of a single orc guard. (1 damage).
Bitsa crawls under an ore cart, hooks his knees over the axle and grabs onto the hardware underneath. As the ore-cart rolls slowly down through the bedlam, the diminutive rogue can see the feet of miners and guards alike as they go through the steps of their violent dance. Soon, the cart rolls clear of the melee and Bitsa is able to safely roll out from under the cart behind the group of guards without fear of being trampled or stabbed.
Tenkar fights with the miners, who are encouraged by his skilled use of broad axe and spike shield against the guards. Initially, the fighting takes place in a small area and both guards and miners have a hard time wielding their weapons to great effect. Many of the guards show incidental nicks and wounds, but several of the miners are hurt as well. The guards seem like they are getting the better of it in the fight (miners take 21 damage + 11 spite, guards take 21 spite damage). Tenkar's armor protects him from harm, and Bitsa and Ozenda also remain unscathed.
[Bookkeeping: Ozenda uses (edit: was 7) 6 WIZ, gains 9 AP WIZ]
Game time 4/4 20:12
Please post your next move by noon Wednesday, June 1.
Post by ProfGremlin on May 31, 2011 22:10:35 GMT -5
Bitsa, in a flash of inspiration, hugs the side of the decline shaft and edges back towards the intersection. Once there the hobb watches for a clear moment in the melee and then dashes around the corner. He takes to his heels, running flat out through the tunnel, his leather sandals sending slapping echoes off the shadow shrouded walls. "Medwort! Medwort! You're free! We have the box! To arms! To arms!" He continues running through the tunnel looking for miners to inspire to rebellion.
Ozenda growls low in her throat as her spell goes awry and merely grazes the front runner. It's like that is it? She watches the initial clash of miners and guards, a thunderous howl of rage and pain only slightly slowed by fear and hatred. I cannot remain here... The wizard waits for a break in the battle and as a knot of miners and guards swirl around the tunnel mouth she runs for the opening and the intersection beyond. I will not be denied my revenge!
I'll have the deep-fried battered pixie with balrog dipping sauce and a Hobgoblin ale.
Post by monstermike on Jun 1, 2011 14:51:16 GMT -5
Captain Skullsplitter emerges from the middle of the battle, attracted by Tenkar's shouts. In response to Tenkar's insult, he snarls "I'm not afraid to fight you, strange one." A wicked smile spreads across his ugly features as he flashes his sabre in a dazzling display of martial prowess, then charges Tenkar. Though dwarves and guards continue to battle all around them, a bit of space opens up in the center of the decline shaft where the two can fight.
The two clash together, their weapons ringing off one another. Skullsplitter manages to drive an elbow hard into Tenkar's face (Tenkar takes 1 spite) but no other damage is done.
Around them, the miners and the guards begin to spread out a little. Most are fighting in the center aisle between the two rows of still moving ore-carts. Other groups have moved closer to the edges of the tunnel. The orc and goblin guards are better able than the dwarves to take advantage of the extra space and the battle tips further in their favor. (Miners take 51 damage + 10 spite damage. Guards take 19 spite damage) None of the miners or guards have fallen yet, but only a handful on either side remains uninjured.
Meanwhile, Bitsa races for the now unguarded coal-pits just below the battle. He turns into the south main hall shouting for the on-duty miners to join them. Medwort pops out of tunnel five, joy lighting his face. "You have the magic box then?" Bitsa nods enthusiastically and rushes across the dump-chute tunnel to the north main hall, still shouting.
Medwort turns to the miners in the south hall. "C'mon then lads. Bring them picks an' shovels. Let's show them guards how we use 'em!"
The miners from the main south hall are soon joined by the miners from the north hall - fourteen hale and hardy dwarves plus the injured Medwort. They rush up the decline shaft ready to join the fray.
[GM comment: They will be figured into the combat starting the next round]
Ozenda tries to make her way through the scrum without attracting any hostile attention from the guards. She almost makes it, but just as she is about to break free to run to the coal-pits, a miner making a lusty backswing with a shovel nearly hits her on the head. She dodges and the shovel blade only musses her hair. With a sigh of relief, she continues on to the coal-pits.
[Edit: I originally had Ozenda getting hit by the shovel, but I forgot to add Ozenda's level to the SR to just squeak by - a v. 7.5 rule that I have been very inconsistent about in this game. Will try to do better in the future.]
Post by ProfGremlin on Jun 3, 2011 19:14:21 GMT -5
Ozenda touches her cheek sure that the shovels blade did more than muss her hair with the wind of it's passage. As the gap to freedom begins to close, the wizard spurs herself into motion and rushes through the intersection and into the southern tunnel. She sees Bitsa still pressed against the wall where he stood to avoid the feral eyed miners charge to the fray. "Come on!" she cries grabbing the hobb and spinning him away from the wall and into motion, "We need to find that door while the guards are still occupied."
Her haste is infectious and the hobb finds himself propelled along by the force of her personality. The tunnels echo with the syncopation of their footfalls. "Aonghasan found the door at this end. The miners said that Salazar kept the creature at bay with fire." He keeps an eye out for torches as well as the lanterns lighting their hasty path. "If you can find the door I can open it. I'm not sure what's behind it other than a creature of darkness with glowing eyes but Salazar was able to control it, though he did so without witnesses so who knows what the truth is?"
When they arrive at the western end of the loop Ozenda asks, "Where was this door your wizard spoke of?"
Bitsa, still a bit stung because of Aonghasan's disappearance, mutters, "He's not my wizard. He mentioned the eastern wall of the western loop. So, the wall on the right."
Ozenda's lip quirks in humor as she catches Bitsa's muttered retort. "Give me a moment to focus and I shall reveal this portal." Ozenda's eyes close momentarily and she runs a hand lightly over the surface of the wall, "Conspicio Ocularum"
Tenkar and Skullsplitter continue to trade blows. Even though Tenkar seems more than a match for the Orc Captain, luck seems to be favoring the burly porcine guard. Tenkar steps onto a stray lump of coal just as he was going to make a killing stroke. His swing goes wild and he is rewarded with a wicked slice from Skullsplitter's sabre. (Both Tenkar and Skullsplitter rolled 44. Tenkar takes 1 spite. I've been rolling poorly for Tenkar and well for Skullsplitter. )
The reinforcements from the coal-pits arrive just as the battle begins to turn decidedly in favor of the guards. They swarm in with picks and shovels swinging, giving the other miners renewed hope. This time it is the guards that are beaten back, though the advantage of their armor keeps them from taking more serious damage. (Miners roll 690 with 29 spite, guards roll 566 with 15 spite. The guards have a total of 183 armor, so only the spite damage tells so far.)
In the coal pits, Ozenda's spell reveals the faintly glowing outline of a doorway in the rock. Bitsa sees three lanterns along the western wall that illuminate the hidden door.
Post by ProfGremlin on Jun 5, 2011 16:08:26 GMT -5
Bitsa looks around and only sees the three lanterns on the opposite wall providing illumination of the hidden door. Knew I should have procured those torches when we requisitioned supplies. Well, if wishes were fishes... "I wish we had more light but I guess this is what we have to work with." The half-pint housebreaker approaches the faintly glowing outline of the hidden door and runs an experts hands over the surface. He searches for hidden panels to press upon, knobs and spurs of rock to turn or slide, he checks the floor to see if there's a trigger to step upon, all to see if it would release the door or set off a trap. He even looks for the not-quite-expected keyhole in case Salazar had eschewed magic to throw off would-be rivals.
As the hobb focuses upon the hidden door Ozenda retraces her steps back down the southern tunnel and collects the closest three lanterns and returns with them. She sets them down on the floor against the wall opposite the door where Bitsa works. There, one for each of us and one more in front of the door. I hope the hobb's information about fire is accurate.
If Bitsa finds a keyhole to pick he'll do so -  11-06-05 16:03:00 CDT: 1+4+25=>30