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Troll Stomping Fun, Oh Yeah - 28-Apr-2006by Greywolf-ELM
The Wyvern's are travelling North by Northwest along an old caravan road, linking the lands of Darokin to the South, and the Principalities of Glantri to the North. The caravan route is often the site of humanoid ambushes, and only the bravest and best defended caravans attempt to traverse the Broken Lands in search of profit. The route skirts the Eastern edge of a large swampy valley in the heart of Troll territory. Surrounding the valley are mountains and rolling hills, which give it more of a festering wound appearance from a birds-eye view. In the Mountains South of the valley, the Wyverns make their way cautiously along the dirty and rocky path. Near the time of High sun, the warband hears the sounds of battle over a hill near the caravan route. Looking for a chance at combat, they move quickly and silently to investigate. Peering through the scrub trees and bushes, Gorga and Darkhunt see a Huge Chimera that is having trouble with his lunch. It is trying to eat 3 trolls, and while eating one, another gets up to attack, and continue the fight. Gorga gathers the warband, and the group of Hobgoblin fighters led by Tuukar.
Using skills honed in the crucible of battle, Gorga directs the warband to best place them, in the outcome that both sides in the battle will need to be fought. Gaak and Haggrekk will sneak around to the North of the Chimera. The hobgoblins, Tuukar, Grall and Nachip will wait at the SE edge of the clearing, all except Nachip waiting to fill either combatant with arrows. Gorga and Darkhunt will approach the fight for parley, to see which side would like help in the battle. Things almost unfold in their intended manner. The goat head sees Gaak and Haggrekk and the Dragon head bites and holds a troll, while watching as Gorga and Darkhunt approach. The troll is not quite dead, and is fighting to be released from the dragon maw. Grall is anxious to attack, and Gorga waves him off for a bit. Gaak gets to the North of the Chimera, and cuts up one of the trolls that was trying to crawl away. A cave is down a short path beyond the Chimera, but it looks too small to have been a home to this huge creature.
Calling out in Draconic, Gorga puts some humility in his voice
"Oh great Dragon, may we assist you in your fight with the nasty trolls, and help you to heal? I see the fight has gone long and you are injured."
The Chimera stares with two baleful eyes at Gorga. The goat head is carefully watching the progress of Gaak and Haggrekk, while the lion head peers cautiously around for any other intrusions. With no response from the Chimera, Gorga decides to attack. What Gorga failed to recognise, was that the Chimera was playing with his food. The Chimera was waiting, and disgorges his flaming breath, charring the troll in his mouth. Gorga and Darkhunt are able to avoid most of the fire, but are both burned as they charge. Darkhunt bites deeply, but is unable to trip the huge creature, and Gorga slashes with his Bastard sword as they ride by. Deepening the injuries already suffered at the hands of the trolls. (1)
Not sure who is the real enemy, Grall shoots a troll in the back of the head with his new composite longbow, presented courtesy of Tuukar. The hobgoblins all miss, and Tuukar hits the Chimera with a few arrows. "No Grall, shoot the big dragon."
Feeling sufficiently injured, the Chimera attempts to leap into flight, to flee the new battle. Gorga and Darkhunt charge back through injuring the creature yet again, laughing and whooping at the death they can both smell. A few sweeps of his powerful wings, and the creature is airborne, only to be brought down shortly by the arrows of Tuukar, and the final arrow of Grall, who claims the kill as his own. In his simple mind his arrow killed the creature. The Trolls are dispatched and burned as their bodies attempt to regrow lost body parts, and the troll cave found. No Troll cave is complete, without everything being dung-covered.
The warband finds some baskets and bags full of:
Banded Mail (sized medium)
dagger (sized small), given to Nachip
15 rings of varying values
2l copper, 3444 silver, 400 gold.
A couple rings, the armour, dagger, wand, and rod, all are magical according to Nachip and his spirit-given magic detection spell.
Easy pickings it turned out. None were identified before curing the Chimera meat, collecting spell components for sale, and moving on.
After another Boar (2) on the caravan route, with Tuukar scouting ahead, he hears the cries of battle. Some 200 knucks (3) ahead, a large number, nearly 100 dead orcs surround a couple of dead horses, and a Human wizard at the side of his fallen comrade. Arrows bounce off of some form of magic field around him. Tuukar mentions back to Gorga.
"Gorga, hold, wizard battle ahead."
Tuukar sneaks, and hides quite handily around the battle, counting nearly 20 Orcs left alive in the conflict. The wizard calls out for healing magic, or he will lay waste to the rest of the Orcs. He gets the expected response, when arrows bounce off his magical barrier. He seems to talk with something nearby, and Tuukar can tell there is some form of invisible creature with the wizard as well. While Tuukar is sneaking behind the Wizard, a couple fireballs go off, and he changes wands to a lightning wand, injuring more of the Orcs. Then another call for magical healing, and the wizard takes out a scroll, reads it, while touching his fallen friend, and promptly disappears.
Tuukar calls up Gorga and the warband. They meet up with some Orcs from Orcus Rex, a land up North, their leader has been killed. They have heard of the Wyverns, and agree to follow them. As fame and treasure seem to surely follow any who join the Wyverns.
The bodies of the nearly 5 score Orcs are brought to the West side of the road, past an embankment, and left for the scavengers. Their bodies are looted by the remaining Orcs of the small tribe. Camp is made, and 4 injured Orcs healed, and healed more through the night by Nachip. The highest ranking remaining Orc tells of a visit to the Troll Temple, and some of the security measures around it.
Using the most powerful title he thinks is possible, the Orc begins.
"War leader Gorga. Our old tribe leader got a message from the Trolls. It was a scroll closed with a black wax seal with a picture of some chicken-headed thing. He saw no harm in opening it. It was written by trolls, but in Orcish. I read it to Dramger.
"Come to the Temple of Afnar and have no fear, you will not be attacked. Bring as many of your Orcs as you like, but come soon. As a token of our good will, please accept this gift."
There was a map showing the caravan route South, and the road into the swamp to the Temple. Dramger thought about it for a few days, and decided to take a chance. There was bunches of trolls heading South, and they was glad to help us find our way. We walked right up to this temple. Quite a big thing of earth and stone. Dramger went in, and when he come out, we all left, quick, but we turned South instead of North, and met them wizards." (4)
Gorga formulates a plan to attack the temple in the swamp, with poor avenues of attack, the main path up to it, is decided upon. The Orc and hobgoblin archers will follow up and target an area for anything in it. (5) The warband will approach while Gorga attempts to feign a parley to see the temple. Storm clouds can be seen gathering overhead, filled with flickers of lightning, and a swirling that seems to be centred over the temple.
It works mostly, but the Troll guards, become suspicious of the small army of Orcs approaching up the road. After a shouting match between a Troll guard, and Gorga, who will not halt his warriors, Gorga, mounted on Darkhunt, charges into battle. Between the two of them, the Troll is badly injured, and tripped to the ground, by the large Worg as she charges past. Nachip sees the potential for trouble, and calls upon his spirits for a spell to enlarge Gaak, allowing him to grow to a huge size. The slaughter commences. Tuukar snipes his arrows in from a distance, dealing heavy damage. Gaak Cleaves through Trolls with his Huge flaming greataxe, Darkhunt mauls and trips up trolls, as Gorga slashes with his Magic flaming Scimitar trophy from the Druid. The Orcs and Hobgoblins do some damage with a rain of arrows. Only one Troll out of 8 escapes into the temple, and Gorga calls for the Orcs and Hobgoblins to rush forward to stoke up the fires left in the guard houses. Gaak looks around at the chopped up hunks of troll, trying to regenerate, and says. "Burn the Trash"
(1) I made 2 mistakes here. The first of which was allowing the charge to happen as it did. Looked up the rules on ride-by-attack. The second was allowing Gorga/Darkhunt to get the first attack, before the Chimera moved. He had a readied action that went off before Gorga/Darkhunt were able to complete their charge. That put him just ahead in the initiative order. Not as if he wouldn't have been brought down, but he had a greater chance of escaping at least, or finding better targets for his attacks closer to the edge of the clearing.) Mounted Combat Links on Wizards
(2) Boar - Measure of time it takes to skin a boar, about one hour. Spits are also used as a measure of time. A boar on a spit is turned over a fire 6 times in about a minute. So a spit is ten seconds.
(3) Knucks are equivalent to feet, Ogre Knuckles as a unit of measure
(4) Paraphrased from the Temple of the Troll God, by Fast Forward Entertainment.
(5) The Orcs and Hobgoblins are using a rule from the Hero's of Battle book from Wizards. They target a 5 foot square and do a certain amount of damage, minus a reflex save. This kept us from rolling d20 for each of the Orcs and Hobgoblins
Next Up: Wakey, Wakey, Trolls and Bakey - 12 and 26-May-2006