Part I - Chillhame.   Posted by Aenarion.Group: 0
Garos
 player, 69 posts
Wed 20 Mar 2019
at 17:05
Re: Part I - Chillhame
To Teznir, Garos replied, "Enemies, and to invade.  One would send messengers first to approach a new land, armored feet would come to test their strength instead."

When Falinar asked, he pulled out the paper and displayed it to all in the lift.  "Yes - can anyone read this?"

Garos turned to Talk with Fists, "What your dispute with Split-Ear?  Maybe we take care of Split-Ear for you if we have good reason.  We just saved all your lives from being cut off from surface by those troops coming.  You four against as many as dug that new area quickly and quietly?  Maybe kill some, maybe kill many, but would die dead.  Good trade for us to leave you there.  One of us for five of you and as many of the armored as you could kill.  Not our way.  Be thankful."

Garos let that sink in for a moment, then counted the orcs, "You owe five lives.  One of us murdered one of you above before coming down.  Still owe four.  You give us man, still owe three. Give us reason we to trust you to not hurt or threaten people until war with darkness over and we see what happen with Split Ear.  You don't give us man, not honor life-debts, and we will know you honorless and can't be trusted to keep deal.  And we see what happen then."
Falinar
 player, 85 posts
Wed 20 Mar 2019
at 17:09
Re: Part I - Chillhame
As they neared the lift and the corpse of the tax collector, something reminded Falinar of their promise earlier. He let Jed walk with the other child, "someone make sure they stay in sight." And he motioned to Rokukumo, "help me carry this body up so it can be put to rest and that village idiot be brought to justice."

He hefted the body on the lift with help, and off and out once they had ascended.

Falinar looked at the paper Garos held out and tried to see if he recognized the writing before he took it to read.
Rokukumo Denkoushin
 player, 42 posts
 Human
 Samurai
Wed 20 Mar 2019
at 20:22
Re: Part I - Chillhame
"Of course. The dead deserve better. The restless dead, even more so." Rokukumo said as he stepped back to help Falinar with the corpse. "Any ideas how should we approach the villagers about Oakenbough's crimes? I reckon he'll have thought of a way to say we killed the man by now. Maybe bring him to where the spirit showed itself to us?"
Garos
 player, 70 posts
Wed 20 Mar 2019
at 20:33
Re: Part I - Chillhame
"I'd not worry too much on that count: we just got here, and that man has been decomposing for quite some time.  I wouldn't be surprised if Oakenbough's own mother wouldn't believe him... though I suppose she raised Oakenbough, so she might be a bit special too."  Garos responded to the Samurai.
Aenarion
 GM, 129 posts
Thu 21 Mar 2019
at 11:44
Re: Part I - Chillhame
Talk-With-Fists listened to Garos and at first his anger rose once again very quickly at the swamp elf's words, the orc gritting his teeth and giving the man a murderous look. But in the end the plain truth of the situation penetrated the red haze of orcish fury and wrath and Talk-With-Fists nodded reluctantly. "Yes, would have been bad for orcs if stayed in mines. But stupid elf's math wrong! Talk-With-Fists saw four dead orcs back there, one drunk one and three guards, all killed recently! So you saved five of us, killed four. You take puny human here," and he pointed at Morton with his javelin, "and go back to village. Talk-With-Fists deal with Split-Ear traitor himself. We go separate ways now!" With this the orc leader gestured at his four remaining followers and started to head down hill unless stopped.

Morton, having placed himself as far away as possible from the orcs now that there was enough room to do so, grimaced at the mention of Jim Oakenbough's name and he slowly shook his head. "I doubt we will have much trouble with this. Most of us in town know what he did to the poor tax collector, they are just too afraid to confront the man. But if you show the dead body and stand firm even if accused and harassed by Jim, then I'm convinced that they will have no other choice than to side with you and condemn him for his crimes. I will certainly support you in whatever way I can!"

Falinar quickly read over the dirty parchment that Garos had taken with him, having only slight problems deciphering the script written in Undercommon.

"Master Overseer, ensure that the following are in place:

All special weapons crates from the smithy, laid out according to division and commander
Chisel assembly zone markings into floor to indicate mustering points (remember, each enclosure to hold at least five hundred of our warriors)
General Ulsnurr’s personal throne (fetch from his chambers)
Complete access tunnel to surface
Prepare holding cells for important human prisoners
Make ambassadorial suite ready for the Most Honored Allies

Attend to this with all haste. We have only ten days to prepare until the Legions of the Chthonic Alliance are destined to march on the upper world."


The scroll is signed with a ‘K’ rune and a wax seal, depicting three hammers joined at the hilt into a wheel pattern.
Garos
 player, 71 posts
Thu 21 Mar 2019
at 13:49
Re: Part I - Chillhame
Garos shook his head and was about to argue with Talk-with-Fist's count, but he thought back to the fight and realized that they had ambushed and attacked the orcs.  In fact, in the combat with the three orcs, they had killed two before they even drew a weapon, and the one that did attack merely sundered a weapon.  While the orcs had performed a kidnapping, they had drawn no blood, while the party had killed three of them sitting or sleeping, and one who had only attempted to protect himself from the party's weapons.

Deeply shaken, he answered Talk-With-Fists, "You right.  My count beyond bad.  Orcs had much more honor here than humans and elves.  For bad count, and way things went debt is mine, not yours.  Give me minute to talk to allies."

If the orc gives him a minute, he turns to the group and quickly asks: "You guys feel good about what happened here?  They captured 2 kids without harming them - still deeply and terribly wrong, but relatively peaceful for orcs.  We invaded their 'fort,' and we murdered four of them - only one of which ever drew a weapon, and that weapon was only used to break mine.  I am of good mind to offer my bow in helping him remove Split Ear."
Teznir Rizlaw
 player, 67 posts
 Halfling
 White Necromancer
Thu 21 Mar 2019
at 14:35
Re: Part I - Chillhame
Teznir was relieved to be back at the surface once again. Not only that, but they had the kid and Morton with them as well, all freed from the orcs. They hadn't even needed to track down Split-ear to do it either! They could go back to town, warn them of the coming invasion they had discovered, avenge the ghost's body, retrieve the sword they sought, and be done dealing with the orcs for good.

Or, at least he thought they were done with the orcs. Garos still seemed conflicted.

"Offer your bow if you want, but if Talk-With-Fists is fine with leaving things as-is, then so am I. The way I see it, we did what we had to do to ensure our own safety based on the information we had available at the time. It would have been unwise to leave armed orcs at our backs. And who knows what would have befallen the children if we hadn't shown up when we did. Jed probably would have drowned, and the orcs hadn't made any ransom demands from the village before we arrived so they may have had other plans for them originally." Teznir took a deep breath and exhaled slowly. "And is helping Talk-With-Fists murder his rival, who did you no wrong, a good way to receive penance for murdering Talk-With-Fists's allies?" Teznir shook his head at Garos disapprovingly. "I say we take advantage of our situation and cut ties with the orcs now, while we still have the chance. We have bigger things to worry about."

This message was last edited by the player at 14:38, Thu 21 Mar 2019.

Falinar
 player, 87 posts
Thu 21 Mar 2019
at 16:37
Re: Part I - Chillhame
As he made out the words, Falinar read the aloud to the group so they knew the contents of the message as well. When Garos returned with more of his odd sympathy for the plight of orcs he let the elf speak his peace, then Falinar nodded along with Teznir's response. "Teznir speaks well for my view. Based on this note, we have more pressing concerns than an orc tribal squabble. Unless in someway this 'Split-Ear' is going to be siding with the 'Legions of the Cthonic Alliance' and we can by removing him, remove a piece from these Legion's board and perhaps add a piece to our board with 'Talks' over there on our side or indebted to us, I see no reason to aid his efforts."

He looked to the orcs, "ask them about this Legion and if they know anything of it or Split-Ear's ties to it if any, then we can decide. Either way though, we need to return the children, bring justice for this tax collector, and find the sword that brought us here in the first place. Don't forget what brought us here and together as you try to assuage your conscience."
Garos
 player, 72 posts
Thu 21 Mar 2019
at 17:13
Re: Part I - Chillhame
Garos raised an eyebrow at Falinar, "That your conscience still says nothing should concern you."

He nevertheless returned to Talks-with-Fists.  "You heard of the Legions, or Chthonic Alliance?"
Aenarion
 GM, 130 posts
Fri 22 Mar 2019
at 13:49
Re: Part I - Chillhame
Talk-With-Fists had grown visibly impatient by now, growling and muttering in response to all this talking and standing out there in the rain, twirling his javelin in circles around his person to keep busy. In response to the next, and hopefully last question, the orc gave a dumbfounded look. "Talk-With-Fists ever heard of any 'schtonik alians', or any legion. And Split-Ear will not know as well, too dumb for such big words and knowledge, not smart like Talk-With-Fists! We finished now, elf-humans?"



Was waiting for Caedan to point out something important, but he hasn't logged in as of yet. Should he not do so until later this day, I will let you know what is going on in his stead.
Aenarion
 GM, 131 posts
Fri 22 Mar 2019
at 22:17
Re: Part I - Chillhame
As the conversation with the orc boss slowly came to an end and the party was ready to finally move out again to bring the children safely back to their parents in the village of Bronce, Caedan suddenly spoke up in a quiet voice, acting as nothing had happened. "Listen up, everyone! I just spotted Jim and his men hiding in one of the old buildings over there. Seems they followed us up here."
Falinar
 player, 88 posts
Fri 22 Mar 2019
at 22:29
Re: Part I - Chillhame
Falinar just looked back at Garos, "my conscience is clear where orcs are concerned. Sounds like they are just a distraction to our time from Talks' response there."


As Caedan said his peace about Jim, he replied as casually as possible as well without trying to look in their direction. "Do we ambush the ambusher's? Let a few of us pass and then let them attack, or do we drop what we're doing and attack them straight away? I dont' want to risk Morton or the other kid's being in danger. Caedan, can you tell if they have bows? Anyone remember from the Inn earlier?"
Caedan Starfire
 player, 36 posts
Sat 23 Mar 2019
at 08:21
Re: Part I - Chillhame
"I did not spot any weapons, but that does not mean they have none. They likely came here to ambush us, so we must assume they are well armed and armored," Caedan replied to Falinar casually, not looking in the direction where he had spotted the thugs.

An idea came to Caedan just then, and with a small smile he glanced at Talk-With-Fists, "Ho there Talk-With-Fists; before you leave on your revenge quest, you should know there are a bunch of humans there hiding in that building." The elven warrior-mage gently inclined his head towards the building in question where he had seen the thugs without looking away from the orc.

"Before we left the village they were boasting how they were going to come to this place and slay the cowardly orc known as Talk-With-Fists and steal his women! They are probably about to ambush you any moment now..."
he said, lying through his teeth.
Bluff (if required): 13


Garos
 player, 73 posts
Sat 23 Mar 2019
at 15:08
Re: Part I - Chillhame
Garos just looked at Caedan.  Though the elf's plan of getting the two groups of monsters to fight each other wasn't the worst thing in the world, the logic of his words, as well as the way that he presented the proposal to the orc made the swamp elf's brain itch.

He strongly suspected that Caedan had overplayed his hand, but nevertheless hoped that Talk-with-Fists was not as intelligent, or at least not as cunning, as he had seemed.  As he readied an arrow and watched, he whispered to Caedan, "Really?  Try to sic a group of orcs who were leaving in peace on men who haven't even been tried yet?"

He had no idea what he was going to do with his bow, but figured it was better to be ready for whatever swamp-storm was about to go down.
Rokukumo Denkoushin
 player, 43 posts
 Human
 Samurai
Sun 24 Mar 2019
at 17:04
Re: Part I - Chillhame
"You want the orcs to act more noble, having them assist in taking down a thug and murderer will be a step in the right direction as you say." Rokukumo muttered towards Garos, a grin plastered on his face as if the human was laughing at some unsaid joke.

How far is the building from our current position btw?
Teznir Rizlaw
 player, 68 posts
 Halfling
 White Necromancer
Sun 24 Mar 2019
at 22:21
Re: Part I - Chillhame
Teznir watched in nervous anticipation as Caedan tried to get Talk-with-fists to go after Jim and his men. He didn't exactly want to trick Talk-With-Fists into a fight with someone who wasn't the orc's true enemy, but he didn't want Caedan's ruse to fail and put their group in danger either. In the end he decided to split the difference. Support Caedan's lie while also supporting Talk-With-Fists.

To Talk-With-Fists, he asked, "Would you like me to help you knock them out? Rough them up enough that they will tell everyone not to mess with you again?"



DC 10 Bluff roll to attempt to Aid Caedan's roll:
17:21, Today: Teznir Rizlaw rolled 24 using 1d20+5.  Bluff (Aid Caedan).

Aenarion
 GM, 133 posts
Tue 26 Mar 2019
at 12:08
Re: Part I - Chillhame
Talk-With-Fists gave Caedan a puzzled look at first and his gaze drifted between the small log building and the elf as he mumbled, "Not friends of yours? Fine with orcs beating other humans to a pulp, then? Talk-With-Fists has no orc women right now, but will not stand for cowardly insults! Loss to Split-Ear still fresh in mind and blood is calling for a fight! You with us, elf? We can leave one of them for you."

Regardless of if the orc boss really believed Caedan's attempt at deception, it seemed he had only been waiting for an excuse to throw down with someone, and if it was with some damn humans, even better. Cracking his knuckles, he informed his four followers about the new situation, giving them a nasty grin that clearly spoke about how much he was looking forward to a good brawl. The other orcs were almost as eager to coat their weapons in fresh blood, after having lost half of their number in the mines, lost their bargaining chips for a two thousand gold reward, and finally had to flee their current home as some army from the underground was threatening the entire region.

After having taking a couple of steps, Talk-With-Fists turned around to the assembled party once more and gave them a dark look, putting a lot of emphasis on his next words. "No interference, you hear? We orcs now go and kill stupid humans over there, and you not lift finger!" If there are no further interjections, he will then turn around and lead his boys to the hiding place of Jim and his cronies.
Garos
 player, 74 posts
Tue 26 Mar 2019
at 12:49
Re: Part I - Chillhame
The orc's response made Garos realize just how bad a situation the elf's lie had put them in.  He had initially hoped that the orc wouldn't see through the lie and then attack the party, especially with the town thugs there to clean up the survivors of either side.

The orcs just going to kill the humans seemed wrong.  While whom though evil hadn't yet done anything to the party, and while he strongly suspected that Jim and company had come to kill them, it was also possible (though unlikely) that they were truly their of an interest to save the children.  Besides, the men had not yet faced a trial, nor was there any guarantee that all of them were involved in the murder of the tax collector.

"What in the stars' names is wrong with you guys?" Asked Garos, exasperated.  "You'd convince a group of orcs to kill a group of men?  In front of children?  Even if we know that at least one of them is a murderer, this is wrong.  I worked for a peaceful resolution here, with the orcs learning that departing in peace can be an advantage.  Apparently peace only lasts until someone wants someone else murdered."

He did not want to risk the children's lives over trying to save what was a possibly murderous group of orcs.  However, he didn't want to send Morton alone with them to the town with the other band - of actual hostile orcs - possibly in the area still.  "Morton, take the kids and run to the town.  They should not see this, nor are they safe if present regardless of how this goes down.  I will be right behind you."

He called out to all three parties now involved, "What is being done here is unwise, and I take no part in it.  You would all be better to go secure your own homes."

He doubted anyone would listen.  Jim's group likely had murder and the fear of guilt on their minds.  The orcs had been betrayed, ambushed, driven out, and now tricked into thinking they were insulted and possibly getting ambushed again on top of it.  The group he had been thrown in with was apparently little, if any, better than either of the others.

He turned to go with Morton and at least ensure the safe return of the children.
Teznir Rizlaw
 player, 69 posts
 Halfling
 White Necromancer
Tue 26 Mar 2019
at 13:40
Re: Part I - Chillhame
"Go. Protect the children," Teznir said in agreement to Garos. He was a bit annoyed at Garos's words condemning everyone, but didn't comment. What would arguing about it accomplish? He was doing the best he could in an extremely stressful situation. He had never had to deal with orc abductors, invading armies, and tax-killing locals all at the same time before.

"I'll stay behind and watch the battle unfold. I will save as many as I can with my healing skills once the dust settles. On both sides." He said the last sentence with extra emphasis for Garos's benefit. "If anyone wants to stay and help me, I would appreciate it. Especially if there is any heavy lifting that will be required."



Teznir will stay behind and watch the battle from a distance. Afterwards he will go in and use his Rebuke Death ability on amyone with negative HP amd use his Heal skill as applicable to keep as many as possible from dying.
Rokukumo Denkoushin
 player, 44 posts
 Human
 Samurai
Tue 26 Mar 2019
at 16:04
Re: Part I - Chillhame
"I'll stay with you Teznir. I'd like to see how things pan out. The rest should go with the children and Morton, they are of much greater concern." The samurai crouched down on his haunches next to the halfling, trying to scrape as much gunk off his clothing as he could, ignoring the elf's rhetoric. After all there are worse things out there than orcs... Dealing with these now is the likely path of ensuring the villagers can escape.
Falinar
 player, 89 posts
Tue 26 Mar 2019
at 17:47
Re: Part I - Chillhame
Falinar shrugged, "it wasn't me that set this particular course in motion, but I won't shed a tear for dead orc or town brigands either. Sit out if you must."

Falinar followed behind the orcs as they charged Jim's position, he kept himself between the orcs and the children and Morton, trying to shield them from any stray arrows that Jim's crew may have until the kids were out of range of any fighting, then he wound his way back up to see how the orcs or Jim's party fared. The state of the battle would determine his next actions...
Aenarion
 GM, 135 posts
Wed 27 Mar 2019
at 14:24
Re: Part I - Chillhame
As soon as the goons in the dilapidated building noticed that the orcs were heading their way, all four of them stormed out, weapons in hand. But their initial bravado quickly turned to uncertainty and eventually fear as they watched the large battle-proven orcs head their way, bloodlust in their eyes. Two of his henchmen turned tail and fled down the hill and into the forest, with the third man only holding out for a few moments longer before joining his friends.

Jim stood his ground the longest, his face a mask of anger, shame and fear. With one last look and a foul curse over his shoulder back to the retreating backs of his buddies, Jim started to walk backwards as well, pointing his shining blade at your party. "Dealing with orcs now, are we? I knew something about you lot was off from the very start! Just you wait until the villagers hear about this! Most likely you worked together with this scum to abduct the boys in the first place! This is not over!" After he said his peace, Jim whirled around and hurried away from the mine entrance at a full sprint as well. The orcs howled in frustration and gave chase immediately, uttering blood-curdling battle cries as they pursued the four humans.

Eventually, the orcs and their greater reservoir of stamina prevailed and they caught up with Jim and his men a few minutes later. The ensuing battle was brief and bloody, leaving two orcs and the three cronies dead on the ground. Jim was surprisingly tough and managed to give Talk-With-Fists a mortal wound before being decapitated by the orc boss. Unless saved by someone else, Talk-With-Fists will soon bleed out on the battlefield, leaving the remaining two orcs to abandon him in search for greener pastures somewhere else.



Teznir, as the two orcs who remained standing at the end will wait until their leader is truly dead and interfere with any attempts from you to heal the humans (with Jim being beyond any help), your only options for your Rebuke Death ability are to either save Talk-With-Fists, or one of the other two orcs who have fallen in the fight.
Teznir Rizlaw
 player, 70 posts
 Halfling
 White Necromancer
Wed 27 Mar 2019
at 15:41
Re: Part I - Chillhame
Teznir followed the group to the battle site as fast as he could, but the skirmish was over by the time he had arrived. The halfling approached slowly with his hands raised to show he was no threat. He inched toward Talk-With-Fists and, if not opposed, placed his hands upon the unconscious leader. As he channeled healing magic into the orc, he whispered, "Death, I beseech you, do not take this man into your grasp just yet. Leave his soul for another day." He continued this process until Talk-With-Fists regained consciousness.

With haste in his voice, he said, "Talk-With-Fists! Do I have permission to try and save your allies from death? I only ask that you let me try and do the same for two of the worthless humans. I will even give you a pair of dice to buy their pair of worthless souls. And I'll see to it that they cause you no more trouble. I must act fast though."



Teznir can use Rebuke Death to heal someone 1d4 damage so long as their HP is less than 0. He can do that up to 8 times a day. He will use his ability as much as needed to bring Talk-With-Fists to 0 or higher. If Talk-With-Fists looks extremely wounded, he will start with a Cure Light Wounds first (1d8+1 HP healed). Then, if Talk-With-Fists gives him permission, he will use it once each on the two orcs, and then on the humans. If he runs out of Rebuke Death uses, he will switch to old fashioned Heal checks.

Let me know how many Rebuke Death/Cure Light Wounds uses I should mark off, how many Heal checks I should make, and if Talk-With-Fists accepts the payment of the pair of dice for the pair of humans (along with the payment of healing Talk-With-Fists's guys).

Caedan Starfire
 player, 37 posts
Wed 27 Mar 2019
at 19:25
Re: Part I - Chillhame
Having declined Talk-With-Fists offer of joining in the bloodletting, Caedan coolly observed the fight. There had been a bit of an alarming moment where the leader of the thugs had threatened to tell the villagers they were in league with the orcs, but thankfully the orcs had seen to it that the treacherous tongues of the humans were silent for good.

"Make sure you witness everything Morton, we may have need of you to serve as a witness later on. Remember these villagers came to ambush and likely kill us, like they did the tax collector; it is only fair they get a taste of the violence they would visit upon the innocent," he said to the eager young human (assuming Morton was still present).

As Teznir attempted to heal Talk-With-Fists, Caedan approached him in case he needed any help that Caedan might be able to offer. If Talk-With-Fists opened his eyes and regained consciousness Caedan remarked, "Well done, you have regained your honor, friend orc."
Rokukumo Denkoushin
 player, 45 posts
 Human
 Samurai
Thu 28 Mar 2019
at 21:13
Re: Part I - Chillhame
As Rokukumo followed after Teznir, he drew his katana but kept it cradled in his arms. Ready for a fight, but not looking for one specifically. "You fight well orc. Now," The human crouched down next to the greenskin before continuing, "You are going to show us to the orc camp. Then come with us back to the village. We'll decide what to do about the camp there, and you may be useful in that regard. Do you accept?"