Poes Adventure Journal
Sixth Entry (after 3/09 session)
You know, a guy really ought to be told. I mean, I have no problem following the heroes of prophecy around – it is my duty after all – and I can even handle being out on these accursed plains. But teeming masses of flightless carnivorous birds leaving nothing but pecked over bones in their path is a little much. I mean really – flightless birds. What’s the point? Aren’t they really just lizards with feathers? Anyway, I first became aware of these critters when Beros lost Kobe’s tracks due to a mass migration of hoofed animals. That’s also when we first spotted some of the pecked bones. And our dwarf. Not that the two were related – unfortunately in this case. At least the heroes were careful – we took a break for the night rather then press on in the dark.
The next morning we headed off, looking to pick up Kobe’s trail again. This was easier said then done and we spent much of the morning simply wandering around until our dwarf noticed that we were being followed by some large cats. Great, I thought at first, more gnolls. I was wrong though. The cats were ridden by halflings and bearing what Beros claimed were elvish standards. Seemed strange to me, but these guys live for strange, so we tried to talk with the halflings. Turns out, after some shouting, some intimidation and some silliness (Kleister trying to convince them that he was a god…which actually started to work once they got a good look at his spear. Heh.) that they had just seen Kobe. I doubted their story – especially when they claimed that Kobe had turned down an offer of 10,000 gold and two wives for the star metal. Certainly didn’t sound like him to me and I’d guess I know him about as well as any of these guys. The heroes bought this story though so I stayed out of it.
Things started looking up, at least for me, that evening when the halflings broke out some alcohol. It was good stuff. Much better than the beer I’d been subsisting on lately. I spoke with Sunny and she hooked me up with some money – enough to lay in a good supply of the stuff for the road. I got started right away and don’t remember much else from the evening until I awoke in my armor face down at the table, mug still in hand. Things had suddenly gotten dark and very chaotic. Kleister was surrounded by pint sized halfling children (quarterlings?...heh), half of them chanting “Tallwalker” as he tried to wrangle them into a group and get them off the front lines of what looked to be shaping up as a rather bloody battle. The rest of the heroes were busy fending off a swarm of what looked like small chickens…Gah! The “piranhas of the prairie” were every bit as bad as I imagined. It didn’t help that I was still feeling the effects of the halfling ale. Luckily, my mom’s old remedy for drunkenness still worked. The mixture of herbs tasted like crap but it did the trick, sobering me up as soon as I started chewing it. By then I was in the thick of things, just in time to dodge a huge landshark that exploded out of the ground, scattering Beros, Ron and the other dwarf. Kleister and I fought off some of the frackin’ chickens, keeping them away from the little halflings, while Guss moved to take on the landshark. The swarms and the landshark proved to be a potent mix of foes, but our heroes were able to overcome them – Ron’s wintry magic squeezed the breath out of the large beast and Beros’ arrows silenced its beating heart. The halfling children were saved and I got to have another drink. Yeah!
The halflings showed their appreciation for the heroes’ efforts the next morning, presenting Kliester Fokken with a ribbon marking him as a champion of their tribe…or clan or whatever. Pretty ribbon though, if you’re into that sort of thing. Which Kleister is. Big time. There were a lot of whispers of “Tallwalker” in the crowd. The name sounds familiar, but I can’t quite place it. Probably a hero of some sort though. Or maybe a legend. I mean, these are the heroes of prophecy, right?
The halflings also told us to bring the star metal back to them. Everybody seems to want that stuff. They also asked if there was anything else we needed. I suggested that some of the large cats they had prowling all over their camp might be useful. This drew the evil eye from several of them. Geesh. You’d think I’d asked to date their sister or something. Well, I guess I’ll have to settle for the large flasks of this strong ale that I purchased. I tagged along with the heroes as they headed out, back on the trail of our wayward halfling friend.
We caught up with Kobe rather quickly – probably because he’d hooked up with a group of humans pulling a cart. Slaves of the orcs apparently. Which frankly, most humans are in one way or another. These were just worse off than most. The kind of life I’d spared my beloved from…
Kobe was riding in the front of the wagon with an orcress. The cart was surrounded by a large guard of orcs. almost immediately, the bickering begans – Beros and Guss suggested setting up shop and shooting arrows at the orcs. Kleister suggested charging the cart. I sided with Kleister on this one, although I thought we should surround them first – at least try to cut off their obvious escape route down the road. Sometimes I suspect it would be a whole lot easier if I were workin to protect the “hero of prophecy” instead of the whol egroup of them…at least there’d be a chance at a cohesive group decision…
After a good 5 minutes of arguing as we followed the caravan at a safe distance, Kleister got disgusted with Guss and simply charged. I took off after him – and our dwarf joined us as well. We got a good head of steam going as we rumbled down the slight incline towards the unsuspecting orcs, yelling at the top of our lungs “You can take our Kobe…but you can’t take our star metal!!!!” Soon enough, we engaged the orcs. It was a pleasure to introduce them to the Queen. The frackers all have it coming…the whole stinkin’ lot of them. I saw Kobe jump out of the back of the wagon and run toward us as well. I figured that it would be good to have his blades on our side, but our dwarf had other ideas. Not to self – never, ever steal anything from a dwarf. Especially if it happens to be a precious metal…they’re just plain mean…
Our dwarf laid into Kobe as if Kobe were an orc, smacking him a good one upside his head. I heard Kobe muttering about having no friends, except for Poe and then noticed a strange glaze to his eyes. Something wasn’t right. He and our dwarf were squaring off and my prayer beads were suddenly like ice around my wrist. Damn. I hate it when she’s all subtle like that. I couldn’t let either of the heroes die…so, as Kobe’s dagger flashed downwards towards our dwarf’s exposed throat I threw myself into him, pushing him out of the way and catching Kobe’s dagger in my chest. Frack.
The next thing I knew our dwarf was standing over me praying to that dragon god of his. I sat up, a bit dazed. An awful stench wafted across the battlefield. I noticed Ron concentrating. Luckily, he had that cloud under control. Heh. It looked like Sunny and the others had been doing good work – several more orcs had been dispatched to my Queen. Good. I stumbled to my feet looking for another opponent. Guss and Kleister were charging at the cart. I take a swing at a nearby orc as our dwarf takes another swing at Kobe. Gah! I push myself to Kobe’s side and give him some of the Queen’s cold strength. Gotta keep all of the heroes alive, even if it kills me. You can imagine my dismay when our dwarf uses magic to command Kobe to enter Ron’s magical stinking cloud. Luckily, Ron moved the cloud in time for our dwarf – after some serious looks from me – to decide to use his magic to heal Kobe and keep him from dying.
Again, I was left looking for a target. Only the orc commander and that orcess are left. I watched as Kleister jumped into the back of the cart and tossed out the star metal. He started fighting with the orcess. Guss, who had been trying to help free some of the humans chained to the front of the cart, decided to grab the star metal. The orcess grinned and ponted towards the sky. We all followed her gaze and saw the incoming dragon at the same time. Not another one I thought. Frack. I’d rather fight more of those damn chickens…
Guss acted quickly, pushing the star metal into Ron’s cloud where it would be safely out of sight. And certainly untrackable by scent. Heh. Kleister and the orcess continued to fight as the dragon made its first pass. Beros took a few shots at the beast, wounding it. Our dwarf and Kobe seemed to have put their differences aside, for the moment anyway, and the three of us kept the orc commander at bay. Guss jumped to Kleister’s aid, killing the orcess. he then stood tall and yelled at the orcs, commanding them to knock off all their evil. Not sure any of them understood him. Or cared. heck, most of them were already dead.
The dragon then hit us with a blast of its posionous breath. Man, and I thought my breath was bad after a night of drinking…This was downright painful. Ron however, had the cure – the Queen’s cold. I followed his lead and hit the beast with everything I had of the Queen’s wintry power. The creature hissed in pain, but breathed at us again. Ron pulled deeply from his reserves and the Queen answered, helping him keep the cold up a bit longer. The other dwarf smacked the creature and it breathed yet again. Frankly, I was getting a bit sick of this…but right about then the thing decided to smack me with it’s tail and then take a chunk out of my leg with its teeth. I fell unconscious at that point and don’t really remember much else. From what I gather from the heroes’ accounts of the remainder of the battle, the beast was driven off relatively soon thereafter. Let me repeat. Driven off. That means there are now two dragons out there gunning for the heroes of prophecy. You’d think the Queen was intentionally trying to make my job difficult.
Anyway, now we’re stuck here on the side of a road to a large orc controlled city, with a large lump of precious metal, a cart pulled by a group of dirty human slaves and scores of dead orc bodies laying around us. Not sure what we’ll be doing next. It ought to be good though and as I always say, it’s a good day to die.
Poe Still living my third life.