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Re: Quest Chronicle


Turn 9
Then, with Milakuweh's blessing, the warriors set off for the cave, with one of the hunters for a guide. For some time they travelled through the thick forest, wary of ambush or traps but never suffering any delay. Finally, as evening approaches they arrived at a sort of cliff or gorge in the middle of the forest. “Down there” says the guide “you must go down there. There is a cave at the bottom. The beastmen are within.” With that, he leaves. It seems he'd rather risk the forest at night than staying near the cave.
Thyrael shows off his skills and scouts ahead. He gives the all clear, and the warriors descend the rocks. The cave entrance ahead is dark and damp. The undergrowth and wet leaves have been disturbed frequently. The lantern shows that the cave stretches back some distance before it ends abruptly with a large hole... the real entrance.
The Warriors enter. Draton moves forward to the end of the cave. He clears away the rubbish and finds some planks of wood covering the hole down. He waits for the other warriors to join him before lifting the cover. Gizelle moves to meet him, checking her new shortbow as she does so. Thyrael and Scrag follow, cautiously.
Draton, with a quick, quiet heave, pulls up the cover. The warriors look down a short scramble into a low, shadow-ridden room. Thyrael and Draton, with their superior eyesight, manage to spot the two doors as distinct from the other shadows, but not much else. A chill of fear falls over their hearts. What lurks down there?
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Re: Quest Chronicle


Turn 10
The warriors converse in whispers about what to do. Draton mumbles something that the others do not understand and moves forward, the beam of light from his helmet bouncing around the room and sending shadows flickering everywhere. Gizelle is close on his heels, stopping in the nearest corner of the room. Close on her heels is the Halfling, who stays by her side, trying to avoid the threatening shapes in the darkness. Scrag sees his companions walking right into the darkness and hurries after, keeping himself between the furthest shadows and the vulnerable thief and witch. The lantern's light stabilises and it seems that the place is empty.
Then hell breaks loose.
A trio of rocks bounce out of the darkness, one striking Thyrael on the arm. One of the doors bursts open, and with horrible, burbling screams a force of creatures run out, waving their weapons. Several hang back, scrabbling on the ground for more rocks. These mutants appear to be similar to those they slew in the forest. Perhaps if the warriors slay enough, they will flee too?
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Re: Quest Chronicle


Turn 11
Although shocked by the mutants, the warriors remember the last time they drove them off, and are not taken aback. Draton strikes out, smashing into one of his attackers. Gizelle slams her staff into a mutant's face, causing some damage. Thyrael darts under her arm and shoves his blade into the recoiling mutant, slaying it instantly. With a satisfied grin on his face he takes a bite out of a pork pie. Scrag manages to hit one of the mutants, but is not successful in killing it.
Another trio of rocks clatter down, striking Gizelle and Scrag. One of the mutants swings a club at the Pit Fighter, but the Warrior takes the blow on his armoured shoulder and it causes no damage. Another misses its swing. Draton's two attackers both clumsily attempt and fail to hit him. Thyrael is not so lucky, and takes another blow to the arm, but remains standing.
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Re: Quest Chronicle


Turn 12
Draton's years of working with his pickaxe and his great strength begin to show, as he hacks two of the mutants out of existence in one great sweep. A grin lights up his face. Gizelle strings her bow, now that Thyrael has cleared the immediate threat, and sticks a shaft straight through the shoulder of one of the mutants menacing them with rocks. She then incants a spell of healing across the party. Thyrael manages to find a lucky opening in his enemy's defence, and opens a great gash with his short blade. The towering Pit Fighter manages to kill his mark with two blows of his Pit Spike.
The mutants seem to waver for a moment before committing themselves. Scrag and Thyrael are both hit, Thyrael badly. The stone-throwing mutants launch another volley, but only one hits, bashing Draton's armour.
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Re: Quest Chronicle


Turn 13
As Draton sees the heavy blow landed on Thyrael, he sees red and in a vicious swing of his pickaxe takes the mutant's head off! Gizelle is similarly concerned, missing her bowshot as she checks how badly the Halfling is injured. Thyrael, though, keeps his feet and his head and shoots an arrow right through the eye of a mutant, dropping it dead. Then he stoops and helps himself to a meal from his backpack. Scrag excels himself, killing one mutant, then stepping over its corpse to slay another. The last mutant has a desperate swipe with his club, then looks at the grim fighter. With a whimper, the mutant drops his weapon and runs.
As it does so, all the warriors lunge to stop it alerting whatever other horrors lurk down here. The creature's legs collapse under it and it curls into a ball, keening in distress. Before the warriors can kill it, it looks up.
This mutant's head is grossly distorted, as if another head has tried to bud off to the left but not grown fully. Its jaw hangs open, as if the muscles that control it are rotted away. Yet it speaks, a gargling burr that sounds almost like:
“Mercy, master?”
 
Gizelle says '”Why should we show you mercy? And if we choose to do so, what can you offer us in return?”
“Mistress, kind one, let me free. Let me go. I will not harm you!”
The mutant offers to tell them about the dungeon.
Scrag and Draton both favour killing the monster outright. Thyrael, on the other hand, advises listening to it, to see if what it says is worthwhile.
Gizelle speaks. “I think we will allow a temporary stay of execution until we hear what you have to say. I will argue for your life but the more information you can give us, the better chance I have to convince my friends to show mercy.”
Thyrael adds “Yeah and if we think you're lying we will start chopping some of your bits off...”
“... very slowly” agrees the grim pit fighter.

The creature cowers even more, but shortly begins to speak.
“You are in great danger. Within... within they await you. The Master has his mage, and we cannot resist him! He has summoned us to his banner. If only you had not come!”
He goes on to list several traps and sites for ambush within the dungeon. This knowledge, if correct, will no doubt be of great use later on.
It looks around, edgy. “Please, now, let me go. I must get far from here before he calls me again.”
Gizelle’s response is stern and certain. “I am willing to let you go but want a guarantee that you will neither betray us or harm the villagers. Are you able to look directly into my eyes and promise me this? And be warned, I too know the magical arts. If you do not speak truly, I will curse whatever soul you have into damnation. As for my companions, I cannot vouch for their actions but if you convince me, I will try to convince them.”
The mutant seems to gather his courage, no doubt encouraged by the fact he is still alive, and does as requested. Gizelle’s magical sense shows his terror turn slowly to hope. She 'sees' that his desire is outside, to leave the cave and survive alone, in the wood. Above all, it desires to live.
She turns to the others. “I believe this story. Will you let it go?”
Draton looks at the pitiful creature, and remembers the children of the village. His dwarf instincts- to kill this abomination, this liability, this attacker of villages- war with his desire to trust Gizelle.
He thinks frantically. ‘We cannot let him live. He attacked the village. I must kill him even if I disappoint the group. If he obeys its masters, he will betray us. I've no choice. I must kill him. But he need not suffer.’
Like a striking snake, Draton lashes out with his pickaxe handle, snapping the mutant's twisted spine. It falls to the floor.
“I could not risk it attacking the village. Killing children. I'm sorry [sign in to see URL] doesn't suffer...”
Indeed, the creature's mutated face seems almost at peace. For a brief moment at the end of its life it was free, it had hope.
Gizelle looks shocked. “I could have charmed it. I would have sent it away in peace.”
There is a silence, and she turns away.
She stands in turmoil beside the misshapen creature. It is within her power to bring it back to life but she knows that her companions will just strike it down again; and even if she did bring it back, she would no longer have the power to charm it. She stares at it with eyes that have seen too much suffering to allow tears to fall easily and makes her decision. A blesssing of nature is muttered for the creatures soul. Then, with a whispered apology, she turns and helps her companions search.

Last edited by thecustodian, 1/Aug/2005, 1:22 am
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Re: Quest Chronicle


Turn 14

Draton finds a small glass item, presumably a toy or ornament. Gizelle, though distracted, finds a small box in the corner. A quick wipe shows that it is made of gold, or at least covered in it. There are pictures engraved on the side, seeming to show scenes of nature and hunting. The box is sealed shut with no obvious opening.
Although troubled over the killing of a defenceless creature the lure of treasure is great and Thyrael has a glance around, but doesn't see anything of interest and soon falls into a food-related daydream.
Scrag has no pity to show the foes he fights, so when the creature dies he goes about to search the room. Pushing over corpses with his boot, he finds a bottle full of green liquid, made of thick glass. Recognising it from his pit fighting days he puts it away in his pack. It could well come in useful if the mutant told the truth about the battles to come!
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Re: Quest Chronicle


Turn 15
Draton advances north into the small room the mutants attacked from. It appears to be a prison cell of some sort, with bars of wood and crudely forged iron arranged into doors. A few small piles of rags make up the furniture, and Draton's helmet lamp picks out a parchment of some sort, which he lifts out. Gizelle moves to the centre of the room with her bow ready, aware that they could easily be attacked again.
Thyrael's curiosity gets the better of him and he peeks through the door to the east. Seeing a featureless corridor he takes a step through the door.
Scrag, seeing the party getting spread out, goes to stand by Draton.
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Re: Quest Chronicle


Turn 16
Even though Thyrael was careful to be quiet and sneaky, some dark fate seems to have conspired against him! Three hulking Minotaurs race out of the shadows, bellowing like hell itself! Thyrael knows that no plan ever goes this badly wrong- this must be pure bad luck.
Draton hears the noise and rushes out, swinging his pickaxe and hitting the nearest Minotaur. The beast shrugs off the powerful blow like a giant ignoring a gnat. "Stupid halfling," mutters the dwarf, "Thyrael, try to escape! Don't fight them! Scrag and I will deal with them..."
Thyrael just whimpers as the dwarf insults him as he carefully judges the right moment to run…
Gizelle manages to keep her head, and not give in to fear. She reaches into her robes and pulls out a scroll. Opening it she begins to chant, speaking strange words slowly and clearly. Her hand stretches out, gnarled fingers pointing at the Minotaurs, when a blast of eldrich power shoots out of her hand, over Draton's head, and smashes into the Minotaur’s chest. The scroll seems to disintegrate, crumbling to dust.
But the witch is not finished yet. Holding her arms over her head, she calls on her power and looks straight at the wounded beast. It roars a challenge... then is silent. Enthralled. Spellbound...
Gizelle’s arms reach for her bow, but sapped by her sorcerous efforts, the arrow misses the other Minotaur she was aiming at.
Thyrael notices that the Minotaur next to him seems distracted and he takes the opportunity to run as fast as his legs will carry him. Whipping out his bow, he shoots a perfect arrow right into the leg of one of his tormentors, but for some reason his hand is shaking too much to get hold of any delicious snacks.
Scrag rushes forward and is about to plunge his fist spike into the charmed Minotaur when Gizelle shouts a warning.

The other two Minotaurs aren’t so quick to catch on. One pushes forward and attacks Scrag, but misses with both blows. The monster at the back growls and pushes the charmed monster, trying to make it move.
Gizelle, unseen by any of the combatants, whispers something into the air. The Minotaur with the glazed eyes seems to jerk up. Ponderously it looks around, at the beast next to it. Then it lashes out with its axe, striking a massive blow to its former comrade. The bellowing of astonishment would be funny if it wasn't so ear-splittingly loud... and angry.
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Re: Quest Chronicle


Turn 17
Draton’s blow is a good one, but the trembling in his hands slows him, and the Minotaur easily parries the swing. Gizelle lets off another bowshot, again missing. Thyrael munches on an apple, and almost as an afterthought launches an arrow at the Minotaurs, but his shot goes wide. After two misses Scrag’s third attack hits home, severely hurting but not slaying the Minotaur. Gizelle's charmed Minotaur repeats its assault, but the other Minotaur is forewarned, and avoids the attacks.
The forward Minotaur swings out at Scrag, catching him with one blow. The rearmost Minotaur attacks its former comrade, striking it down and splitting its skull. Spike the Minotaur is dead.
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Re: Quest Chronicle


Turn 18
Draton has no luck against the towering brute. Gizelle's arrow again goes wide, and she curses her bow, which is certainly acting like it was badly made! In her frustration she finds that core of rage on which her magic is built and lashes out in a dangerous spell that hits the Minotaur and kills it horribly. Its companion sees the withered corpse with something like panic. It must be unnerving, seeing one ally turn traitor and the other die within minutes! Thyrael misses with his short bow and has a cookie to cheer himself up.
Scrag steps up and unleashes a flurry of blows. One connects solidly.
The Minotaur responds with furious strikes, but neither hit the Pit Fighter.
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