View Full Version : RC Karyst: A Plethora of Halflings
Sun, 1st Sep '02, 4:20am
Having conlcuded their business with the merchant-wizard Gertmayer, the party spends some time re-stocking supplies, as well as making a few new purchases. After a restful night at Mistress Kendra's, the group returns to the road, resuming their journey to the village of Banlogh in search of the man named Maaric.
Briefly travelling west, the party leaves the main road for the southern trail that leads them through wooded terrain. The march is easy going at first, and the weather gentle and steady. Near the midday mark of the first day, however, they encounter a small group of monstrous spiders whose web had been strung across the trail. The battle is quick, and the spiders prove to be a light contest, although Varg is poisoned by a spider's bite. But after being administered to by Rhwydd, and a good night's rest, the half-orc warrior regains his strength and vigour.
The second day proves uneventful, other than the splash and squish of their footsteps as the weather turns grey and wet.
The third day dawns as damp and gloomy as the second, but the party continues down the southern trail. Shortly after breaking camp, however, a woman's scream draws their attention to a rocky clearing in the woods: an ogre and two gnolls had cornered a halfling man and woman. The stalwart group stealthily approached the assailants, surprising them and catching them unaware. After a fierce battle, the ogre and its gnoll companions lay dead. The freed halflings, Edward and Sylvia, are extremely grateful at having been rescued from certain 'breakfast'.
The two halflings, a collector and seller of antiques and his wife, had been returning home to Nedlelan from a business trip to Dolem when they were attacked. They offer the group a sizable amount of gold, but the party politely refuses. They settle, instead, for a hardy breakfast of bacon, cheese and bread.
When the meal is done, Varg searches about the clearing, to see where the ogre and the gnolls came from. Spying their tracks, he leads the group on an 'ogre hunt'. The tracks lead to a small clearing to the east which looks to have seen a large amount of traffic recently. Varg picks up the trail again, and the group travels further into the woods before coming to a small encampment of ogres in a cliff-side cave.
Two ogres, sitting outside around a fire, put up a great deal of resistance, but eventually fall to the party. Amidst their belongins, Devious finds a handful of gold (40 gp). With Varg in the lead, the party ventures into the cave.
The first chamber they come across is inhabited by another ogre and a gnoll. Again, the party is able to sneak up behind them, and the two giants quickly succumb to the strength and skill of the group. Proceeding further into the cave system, they encounter yet another ogre, accompanied by two more gnolls. A determined battle ensues, in which Devious, Varg and Rhwydd all take heavy wounds. Still, they prevail over their foes. With the battle done, a plea for help is heard from a pile of rags. Upon inspection, the rag pile contains a halfling by the name of Kaildren who had been held captive, most probably as an afternoon snack, by the group of ogres and gnolls.
(ooc: welcome back LordNocturne)
Introductions are brief, and the group, along with the recently freed Kaildren, decide to set camp for the night in the caves; they would appear to be safe, now.
Wed, 4th Sep '02, 9:25pm
Mr Devious brings back his ass and Rhywdd's Mule and leads them back into the cave. He keeps a very worried eye on the big wolf walking alongside their new companion. Once back with the others he prepares to settle down for the night and take a light snack of rations.
"So we meet another Halfling, Ratheof, you didn't tell us this was Halfling country. Not that it makes much difference other than I might have stocked up on extra tobaco and fancy foods. No matter. So anyhow, I've been a bit rude. Our new friend must tell us his story, I'm sure being captured by those ogres must have provided you with a interesting tale to tell."
Thu, 5th Sep '02, 2:08am
Kaildren listened to Devious, idly petting Griz with one hand, he looks towards the group, then to Devious again.
"Well, there isn't much to tell. I was abandoned as a child and raised by a group of Druids, who i learned from. I began to wander when i was old enough, and have been doing little else. Recently i was heading through this forest, just traveling, and was ambushed by the group of Orcs and Gnolls." He pauses for a moment, his eyes narrowing in memory, still angered. "I'm not sure what happened to Griz, but they knocked me out and the next thing i remember is the sounds of your battle with them."
Fri, 6th Sep '02, 11:29pm
Lucky for you then that Varg here decided it was a good time to go ogre hunting. You must know the local area pretty well, perhaps you could help us find the village we're headed to.
Sat, 7th Sep '02, 3:18am
"What Village is that?" Going over a mental list of villages, he tries to decide where they'd be headed.
Wed, 11th Sep '02, 9:08am
(ooc - it's gone very quiet. I don't know whether to post as I'm not sure if there was a session on Saturday or not so don't know if the story has moved on. I did get the email saying a room was set up but, as I replied, I didn't get it until too late. So I'm a bit in the dark as to what's happening :( )
Thu, 26th Sep '02, 5:12pm
After spending the night in the ogre's cave, the party gathered up their things and retraced their steps. Reaching the woodland trail, they continued their journey south to the small village of Banlogh.
Shortly after midday, the group encountered two strange people: a slight man named Hordan, and his large companion, Ulek. While Ulek stood silently, Hordan explained that he was a 'collector' of odd and unusual items. At present, he is looking for a particular book, which he described as belonging to an ancient and secret sect that seems to have died out about 500 years or so ago. While he was vague, or possibly ignorant, on the contents of the book, he sates that the sect it belonged to were some sort of 'seekers'. He then wondered whether the group might have some information on this book - he would pay handsomly - or if they might be interested in helping him obtain it. While Rhwydd briefly seemed to consider the idea, Varg was blunt in refusing the offer. Shortly thereafter, the party watched as the two strange men continued north.
A short discussion ensued among the party, with Varg professing his 'wariness' of the two men. The party also discusses the possibility that the 'book' described by Hordan is the same book (stored in Devious' pack) given into their care by the ghost in the Seeker's ruins.
The group makes good progress, and makes camp that night about a half day from Banlogh. Speculation about the motives and intent of the two strange men they encountered earlier, they set a double watch that night. Partway through the first watch, Varg and Kaildren's attentions are drawn to 'supicious' sounds coming from the woods. Kaildren shouts out a warning of sorts, and the sounds cease, not to be heard again that night.
The next day progresses quickly, and shortly after noon the party arrives in the small village of Banlogh. Noting the need for food and drink, they quickly head to the only drinking hole in town: Gilver's Tavern, on the edge of town. Within, they are cautiously greeted by Dara, a female dwarf of later years. While bringing them food and drink, Dara also seems to come to the conclusion that the newcomers are , for the most part, trustworthy. She arranges for them to stay at the Banten's old home - a small shack on the south side of the village.
As the conversation progresses, a few 'sight-seers' can be seen and heard peering around the doorway and windows of the tavern - it would appear that the party has attracted some attention in this otherwise sleepy village. They also learn that the man they came to see, a halfling named Maaric, has been dead for most of a year. He apparently drowned while fishing in the local stream one day, and his body was found by Avery, Maaric's closest friend in the village. Dara mentions that this all seemed very strange to everyone - Maaric was 'an adventurous sort', and his drowning seemed like such a simple and tragic way to die. She comments how only the evening before his death, Maaric had been regalling the patrons at the tavern about his latest 'adventure', and brandishing his prized dagger.
Fri, 27th Sep '02, 1:26am
"Dead so long, huh? Seems odd that his friend wouldn't have heard by now. Its not so far away.
What was this last great adventure he was talking about? I'm always keen on interesting stories."
Fri, 27th Sep '02, 3:27am
Dara smiles, obviously recalling fond memories. "Oh, I don't know if they were 'great' adventures. But Maaric certainly made them sound grand. This last time he said he'd gone into a dark and myterious world, deep beneath the surface, inhabited by evil dwarves, and strange, magical gnomes." Dara's eyes take on a far away look as she recounts what she can remember of the tale. "Maaric had ventured there before, and was returning to clear up some 'unfinished' business...whatever that means...only he didn't get a chance to because he was captured by servants of some evil dwarves. What did he call them, oh yes, I remember: Derro. According to Maaric these Derro are slave-servants to the evil dwarves, Grey Dwarves. So these Derro captured him, and were going to take him to the Grey Dwarves. They journeyed for several days, and without the sun, moon and stars, he didn't know which direction they were going. Luckily, they stopped to rest one time, and for a change there was no one watching him. He managed to untie his bonds, and slip away from his captors." She stops for a moment, thinking, then continues. "Yes, I believe that was when he found the dagger."
Completing her tale, Dara stops and looks around her. She suddenly seems quite embarassed. "I don't remember much else...I was working at the time, and Maaric's tales are mainly told for the sake of the younger folk."
Fri, 27th Sep '02, 6:32am
"Interesting, if true. Maybe I'll hear more some other time. Now I think I'll check out the lodgings we just arranged."
Varg then gets up and heads over to check out the shack, but only briefly. Assuming I can get access, I stow my gear (other than a dagger) and then go visit the smith. [Others are welcome to come along if they wish, though someone might try prying out more of the story from the children as well).
Sat, 28th Sep '02, 10:09am
(I'm assuming these children will be gnomish and hence very tiny compared to your average half-orc barbarian/ranger type. Also, didn't we have a small stone handled dagger? I seem to remember Rath finding one and letting Devious keep it. Oh yes I'll aslo re-examine the old nbook again and see if I can find a suitable expert around town. Is this the town where the rescued halflings said we should mention their name?)
Once Varg dissapears, Devious struggles to keep a wicked grin from his face. Nodding to the others he gets up and makes for the door.
"OK I won't be long, I'll take Varg's advice and see if I can find out anymore about this local adventurer."
Devious heads outside until he can find a group of bored looking children (hopefully this won't take long in the days before Disney, TV and computer games.) When/if he does then:
"Hello children, did you see that giant that I and my friends came into town with? He's the mighty, legendary and very famous Varg the Ogre slayer. For those of you that haven't heard of him, let me tell you about some of the incredible and exciting and, dare I say it, even amazing advenures that the mighty Varg has accomplished. I have only had the pleasure of traveling with him for a few weeks yet he has already bravely saved my life from certain death several times. Would you like to hear about one of these adventures perhaps? Which story would you like to hear most? Varg and the mysterious hauting ghosts, Varg and the sinister Dwarven Sorcerers or Varg and the Great Ogre Hunt?"
Once the children decide, I'll tell the story with as much exageration of Varg's heroic, mighty and role-model adventuring deeds as its possible for Devious to get away with. Once I've finished the story.....
"And so children, as you can see the world is full of strange adventures and mighty champions. In fact I hear that you had a local hero around here. His adventures involved strange underground dwarves and magical daggers perhaps something like my magical sword here (Devious shows his +1 rapier). perhaps one of you would like to tell the story of your local adventurer. One good story deserves another. And if I enjoy it enough I'll show you some sword fighting moves."
Hopefully the kids will give me a fuller story (and I'll try and work out how much is pure imagination by asking a few questions about detail). When they finish I'll show my cunning sword skills as promised (Holywood as opposed to Varg style). Finally.....
"Thank you children, I must say that was most fun. Now remember to bee nice to Mr Varg when you see him. Don't hastle him too much as he is still tired form all his ogre slaying but I'm sure he won't mind being asked to mark a momento for you or if you bow to him and say 'Hail mighty Varg' when you see him in the street. Or perhaps you could play some games based on his good deeds. Now I must be off to see my other friends, good day to you all and thank you for your stories."
Tue, 8th Oct '02, 3:08am
Varg makes his way across the small village, finding the little building that will serve as the party's 'home' during their stay in Banlogh unlocked, with signs of having been recently cleaned. The small building is sturdy if somewhat bare, though there is room for the whole company to bed down.
After stowing his equipment in the building, Varg returns to the north end of town where he finds the smithy. Inside, a stout, human male is labouring near the forge, working a heavy metal object over the anvil. Although the smithy is quite open, the heat inside the building is intense, while the ringing blows of his hammer fill the air. With his back to Varg, the man continues working for several moments before stopping to consider the piece before him. Thrusting the metal back into the forge, he finally seems to notice Varg. At first he only gives a slight nod. Then, glancing briefly to the forge, he takes a few steps forward, away from the forge. "Greetings. Name's Avery. What can I do for you?"
Meanwhile, as Varg ventures over to the smithy, Devious manages to gather about him a small collection of children (a mixture of gnomes, humans and halflings). The children seem fascinated by Devious, as well as his tales of Varg the Adventurer. As he chats with them, encouraging them to recount their own tales, he is able to gather several pieces of new information. According to the children, Maaric had been back in Banlogh for about a month before his death. During that time, he frequented the tavern, as was his custom, telling tales of his exploits, both real and imaginary. He was seldom seen without his newly acquired dagger; a gleaming piece of metal work, with gold work along the hilt. In regards to his last venture into the underworld, the children say that Maaric had returned to the depths below in search of some old friends of his - gnomes, but called by a strange name. In addition to what you learned from Dara, the children tell how Maaric, while searching for his friends, had stumbled across something "he wasn't supposed to see - a secret". That is why the derro captured him and took him away. Unfortunately, they aren't very clear on what that secret was.
Tue, 8th Oct '02, 8:58pm
Ratheof asks Dara if there is someone selling arrows in the village.
After that he follows Vargs example and checks out their lodgings. If he sees any halflings he stops to talk to them, trying to get to know some of them a little.
Sun, 13th Oct '02, 8:53am
Varg looks around the smithy curiously, then settles for studying the man Avery. When greeted, he replies:
"Greetings. I am Varg, a tracker. A woman asked me to look into the disappearance of her friend Maaric. I have already heard of the odd way he died and some of his adventures in G'henna. I also heard that he was well known to you. Is there anything you can tell me about his death or those who might have caused it?"
[ October 13, 2002, 08:55: Message edited by: Vormaerin ]
Sun, 3rd Nov '02, 5:41am
Dara tells Ratheof that a halfling named Geffers, who lives at the southern edge of the village, serves as both a fletcher and bowyer. "I'm certain he'd be willing to trade some of his goods with you. You'll find his house just south of where you're staying." On his way to the group's lodgings he passes one other halfling, although the small man was hard at work chopping wood. He stops working briefly to give a friendly greeting to a fellow halfling, and introduces himself as Fendrow. A young halfling, he says he works for the mayor, Orin Garlsmynn, doing odd jobs and other things. With a pleasant wave, he sets back to work.
Avery nods and gives Varg a slight smile. "Indeed, I was quite fond of Maaric. A good man, pleasant to most, and better to his friends." He stops, looks up to the skies briefly, then continues. "It was quite the shock when I found him, I must admit. We spend an awful lot of time fishing in that stream, and while he was, shall we say, somewhat reckless when off on his journeys, Maaric was a good swimmer. Soul like that deserves a better death than that. And it would seem you've already decided that his death was no mere accident. Hmm...can't say I haven't had the thought myself." Avery stops again, this time to wipe the sweat from his face. The heat inside the smithy is stiffling and oppressive.
"You know, you're the second person in just the last month to come asking about Maaric. Seems a little odd to me, as I've known - knew Maaric for some years, and I haven't seen either of you before. You say a woman sent you? How about you tell me a little of this woman, first, before we go any further."
Sun, 3rd Nov '02, 10:05am
"Well, I don't know that much about her. Things like that don't matter much to me, not when dealing with corpses. With live ones, I'm a bit more careful, generally. Anyway, she's a woodwise woman living over near Malvrin and well spoken of by the local fae. She asked me to check into Maaric's demise and deal with any problems that might be uncovered thereby. I had another contract to deal with in the meantime, so its been a couple weeks since I last spoke to her.
Now, perhaps you can tell me about this other inquisitive fellow?"
Sun, 3rd Nov '02, 9:56pm
"Nice talking to you Fendrow, maybe I can buy you a beer later" Ratheof waves in return and makes his way to their lodgings. Having dispatched his backpack he makes his way to Geffers to see what he can offer.
(Assuming that Geffers is home)
"Greetings, I am looking to buy some arrows and I hear you might have some for sale. By the way Ratheof is the name"
Ratheof offers his hand to Geffers.
Thu, 21st Nov '02, 12:35am
Seeing Ratheof, Geffers smiles warmly and enthusiastically takes his hand. "A pleasure to meet yah, good sir. Doubly so as you're just the right size! Name's Geffers..Erolby Geffers actually, but most around here just call me Geffers. I certainly do have arrows for yah, being a fletcher and all. Hah! I just finished a new batch too...but if you don't like what you see, I'm sure I can fix you up with some that do catch your eye." Geffers brings out various sample arrows, including some flight arrows and some of very fine craftsmanship (masterwork).
Avery listens carefully to what Varg has to say, as if weighing every word. Then he pulls up a stool and indicates for Varg to do the same. "Look, I don't hide the fact that I find my friend's death a little..well, strange. I still wake up nights with the sight of his broken, mangled body fresh in my mind. Could barely recognize his poor little body but for his clothes and things." Avery stops for a moment and takes a deep breath. "Now, nearly a year passes by, and two different people, complete strangers round these parts, suddenly seem interested in the whole sad affair. Seems a might odd to me. That other fellow, Garren I think his name was, he didn't say much at all. Claimed he was some friend of Maaric's from...where was it...oh, yes, down from Dolem...only he didn't sound like it. Spoke like a southerner to my ear. I didn't like, so I don't mind telling you about him. He said all the wrong things, if you know what I mean. Says he's a friend, but in all the years Maaric lived here there was no sign of this fellow. Believe me, Banlogh's a small place, and we'd remember. Plus, not once in all the time that I knew Maaric did he ever mention such a fellow. Not only that, but he spoke carefully...mm...cautiously. As careful with what he didn't say as what he didn't, like he don't want to give any hints as to what he knows. All I told him was that Maaric died, and we miss 'em. Even showed him Maaric's grave - carved the epitaph myself. You...well, I take you at your word. You say it straight out, and don't hold anything back that I can tell. So, I don't mind talking to you. Who knows, maybe it'll help me sleep better at night."
Sat, 23rd Nov '02, 9:49pm
DELETE THIS POST PLEASE.
Pretty please? :D Thanks! :D
[ November 27, 2002, 02:45: Message edited by: Capstone ]
Fri, 6th Dec '02, 2:54am
As Devious, Rhwydd and Kaildren enjoy a few quiet moments at Dara's small tavern, two strange newcomers enter through the main door: a small male gnome and a slight, female elf. The party members, noticing the tired and somewhat confused appearance of the two strangers, invite them over to the table to share a drink or two.
When introductions are over, it is learned that Jibreel and Feywily, the gnome and the elf, have travelled from Ulsmeth in search of a man named 'Garren'. It would seem that he is connected to the disappearance of several people, whose concerned families had asked the two travellers to investigate.
Varg, returning to the bar after a lengthy and revealing conversation with Avery the smith, enters the bar and eyes the newcomers cautiously. After a brief introduction, Varg takes a seat at another table for his own reasons. Zorac returns from Geffers soon after, and after introducing himself to Jibreel and Feywily, seats himself at the table with Varg.
As the group settles in their respective places, Devious discusses a few items of interest he gathered earlier from the town children. Primarily, that the deceased halfling, Maaric, would appear to have connections with some Svirfneblin in the subterrannean realm of G'Hnna. However, it remains unclear as to whether an entrance to the hidden realms lies nearby or not. As the discussion continues, Jibreel and Feywily learn that Garren, the man for whom they are searching, is a slaver, and the group speculates that the missing persons have been enslaved.
After a short meal and a drink of ale, Varg again departs from the tavern, leaving the party to their drinks, and to ponder over his whereabouts.
After extooling the virtues of the half-orc to Jibreel and Feywily, the group decides to depart, hoping to find a nearby entrance to G'Hnna.
Leaving the tavern behind, Varg ventures over to the shop, and home, of Geffers the fletcher. After making a few purchases, Varg questions Geffers about the tracks he found by the stream, shortly after Maaric's death. Geffers states that from the tracks, he believes there were at least two others with Maaric that day: one large, or human-sized, and one smaller, about the same size as Maaric.
Thu, 12th Dec '02, 10:28pm
Feywily coughs a bit to break the silence, then asks softly as if a little shy.
"So.. what do you all like to do? Music? Reading? something else perhaps..?"
she looks around at them with a curious look, staying a bit behind them.
Thu, 12th Dec '02, 11:23pm
Jibreel pauses momentarily on hearing Feywily. He tries not to sound awkward as he shifts to another topic. "Oh, um, has anyone brought any lanterns or torches? I imagine they'd be quite useful, seeing as how we're going to G'hnna."
(I missed the last 30 minutes or so of last session; is the group now on the way to G'hnna?)
Fri, 13th Dec '02, 1:35pm
Well, everyone seems to think that Varg is just going to lead the band that way despite the sudden acquistion of several characters of dubious provenance. :rolleyes:
And, no Varg does not carry any torches, lanterns, or other devices whose primary purpose seems to be ensuring the bad guys see us before we can see them. :mad: