Category Archives: RQ6 -/-Mythras

Games based on the Mythras system [was RQ6]

The Odyssey of BARYPOS of TEGEA Chapter 6 Part 5


 Part 5  Chaos

 

The guide, Megisthus, and Zeno decide to camp and allow time to rest and heal from the day’s activities. We move one mile from the area of blood and bodies to avoid having hyenas attack the camp.  The two Egyptian slaves look after the animals, while we look after each other. Archi and Zeno both examine the note to see if they recognise the handwriting; neither of them do although we all suspect that it is Zorba Jason’s enemy and Archi’s cousin. Jason says that is the type of thing he would do, while Archi does not believe a family member would act so. We also bury the dead in 8 graves with Telamon resting as advised by Dr Archi. Archi, myself and Jason takes turns as night guard.  As dark starts to fall with Archi on guard we hear the roar of lions in the distance. Then sometime later the lions approach the dead and start to feed, we hear there roaring all night.

 

The next two days are full of heat, sand and discomfort, travelling a desert is no fun and all for two slivers a day.

On day 6 of the trip we come across the scene of a fight. A group seem to have attacked a camp. The camp shows signs of camels and Greek food. There are 6 new graves around the camp site area. Jason scouts around and finds some Egyptian arrows, not quite the same as the ones used against them before but close. We open all the graves, a gruesome job but we need to know what happened. We find 4 Egyptian and 2 Greek bodies. They all look about one to two days dead. Archi looks for any evidence on the bodies or around the camp of a healer being at work, he finds no signs. It looks like the camp was here for two days and they left heading the way we are going a day ahead of us. We refill the graves leaving the coins on the Greeks eyes and then move on camping at the end of the day. AT least Zorba is down at least two men so has only four with him now.

 

The next three days are all much the same, hot sandy unpleasant days and cold sandy unpleasant nights. We keep up a guard and Telamon joins in as he feels he can cope with the pain from his lost arm. The arm will heal eventually but it will take a long time and never be much use to him.  We talk about Archi making something to replace his lost forearm or finding a very powerful healer, both very unlikely.

 

Night of day 9, Telamon is on guard duty on a cloudy night with some starlight when he hears a noise, something moving out of sight in the desert. He knows this sound they heard it on the island last year a giant scorpion is coming their way. He wakes the others and they get ready near the fire with the camels and slaves on their right side. They see the monster scorpion at around 25 meters, Telamon is to the left of the fire and Archi to the right then Jason is behind and to the left of Telamon Zeno is behind Telamon to hand him Akons while Megishus, the guide, is behind the fire and I am behind Archi then off to the right is the camel park.

 

Archi prepares his belly-bow; Jason, who hates chaos, releases an arrow which sticks into its thorax. The scorpion charges at Barypos who quickly sets his spear to receive the charge [a luck point] and as the stinger and the spear have the same reach they hit each other simultaneously. Barypos’s spear catches the fore right leg and removes it [Critical hit, ignore armour and max damage]. The scorpions stinger hits Barypos in the head, again he was lucky [used luck point to reroll damage] and the helmet turned most of the damage. However the sting did reach his flesh and injected its venom. Barypos then rammed his spear into the thorax of the beast killing it and starts singing a Epinikia in victory.  So Barypos the scorpion slayer has a cut on his head of no concern and the venom seemed to have no ill effect on him.  A victory over chaos indeed, Archi opens up the scorpion to see what it looks like inside, he is a seeker of knowledge after all. The result is that we have scorpion leg meat for breakfast that is all except Jason who refuses to eat chaos.

 

Next day the tenth of our journey Megishus tells us that he can see the rocky area with the pyramid on ahead. Sometime later we can make out a camp at its foot, Jason goes stealthily forward to have a look. Once at around 100 meters he can see a small camp at the foot of the rocks near a pool of water feed from a stream coming down the rocky outcrop. The camp has 5 tents, 10 camels and he counts at least 7 people three of which he thinks are slaves. He comes back and tells us what he saw. We then spend quite a time discussing our options, which come down to kill Zorba or talk.

 

Jason doesn’t trust Zorbia one bit whereas Zeno wants to talk believing in the power of words and Archi does not want to kill a relative. Archi and Zeno end up having a loud disagreement over that as Archi says he has learnt that words do not always work.  Jason uses this disagreement to end up convincing the whole group of his point of view and so an attack is planned. [Odd how often players decide to fight no matter the risks]

 

We arm up and sneak forward, Jason to within 60m and the rest of us 20m behind him. The guard see or hears us and shouts as Jason puts an arrow into his left arm dropping him. Later we find him dead as it was a serious injury.

Archi, Jason, Telamon and Barypos all jog forward as Zorba, we assume, calls his men to hide, while Telamon uses his authority to taunt them. They do not suddenly charge us. Jason then stops and loads his bow while we all walk forward Jason and Barypos both see a man hiding around the tents.

 

Archi uses his sling on the man he saw and hits his left leg stunning him, Jason misses with his shot.

As Archi and Jason load Zorba loses it and charges towards us. Telamon throws his Akon as he comes into range but misses, mainly due to his closing speed. I also throw and also miss.

Zorba hits Barypos in the head with his spear; as Barypos draws his kopis.

 

Archi continues to load his sling while Jason fires at another of Zorbas men killing outright. Zorbia. Spear attack is parried by Barypos, Telamon draws his heavy cavalry sword.

Archi uses his sling again killing another of Zorbia.s men while Jason swaps his bow for his dagger. Zorba stabs barypos in the head again this time knocking him out with a serious wound. Telamon swings his sword but Zorba parries it.

Archi swaps to his dagger, as Jason moves behind Zorba.

 

Archi moves to the side of Zorba, who now has Telamon in front and Jason behind. Jason stabs Zorba in his left leg leaving his dagger in while holding onto it. Zorba attacks Telamon who manages an amassing parry tripping Zorba with it. Telamon slashes with his sword but fails to have any effect he is tiring.

Archi hits Zorba in the back impaling his dagger as well, however as Zorba fell Jason lost his grip on his dagger. Zorba stands.

Jason hits Zorba with his shield knocking him to the ground again, but he just rolls back to his feet again.

 

Archi tries to twist and pull his dagger out but isn’t strong enough while Jason uses his shield again to no effect. Zorba jabs at Telamon and misses due in main to the daggers in his body. Telamon swings wildly again.

Archci pulls his dagger out this time and the pain knocks Zorba out.

 

Combat is over. Zorba is down but alive, three of his men are dead the last guard is stunned with a bad leg. Eumenes and the three slaves are unharmed.  Archi tries his healing skills on Barypos to no effect leaving him unconscious with his head wound, while we round up our prisoners.

 

Earlier parts of the story can be found here 

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The Odyssey of BARYPOS of TEGEA Chapter 6 Part 4


Part 4

Encounter in the desert

Telamon loses part of his divine soul to Hades as Hades does what they wanted, receiving all the dead on the island. Outside all the dead bodies collapse to the ground as their souls leave them. However Hades also needs Telamon to do jobs for Thanatos, god of harsh death. Thantos wants to make sure that certain people die in particular those who have managed to avoid death so far. Each job Telamon does will give him back some of his divine soul. The first job he is given is killing Abas the Silversmith.

With the walking dead dealt with we set about rounding up the living lepers. To do this Telamon goes and talks to one of them, and convinces him with the offer of food, clothes and a better place to stay. So that leper goes to the barge, however talking to each one individually will take quite a time so Archi speaks loudly and gathers a crowd and convinces them as a group, this takes an hour but that is much less than doing them one by one. The group of lepers follow them onto the barge and the group them gets onto the towing ship  and they pull the barge out and around Alexandria to land near another secluded area where lepers live. Before they leave they pray a blessing over them all. The heroes have been careful not to touch or be touched by the lepers as they do all this.

By now its morning, they bath and eat and then in the afternoon go to see Imbrus, we enter just as he has finished his lunch and so share in some sweet treats with him. We report what we have done and that the island now only has dead bodies on it which the contractor can deal with. Imbrus thanks them for the good and caring job and tells them to see his secretary about payment. He also says that we can come and see him if he can help in the future. We go to see the secretary and he gives us a chit to take to the treasury for 300dr. We then need to go to another part of the place to find the treasury the clerk there gives us 270dr for the chit the other 30dr is tax he says.  We then head back home taking in the sights of the city in the late afternoon.

Back at home we find two notes have been left for us. One from the Scholar Zeno an Uncle of Barypos, has left a message for him saying he needs the groups help quickly. Meet at the Museium ASAP. The other is from Ledonidas, a cousin of Telamon, an archer asking to see Telamon when he gets back again. He has just arrived in the city, from outside the city, and gone off to Tanis with Tros. We send a slave with a message to Zeno telling him to meet us here tomorrow. We then have supper and head to bed.

Zeno arrives as we are having breakfast and talks with us over the meal. He wants to go to Pyramid of Unus, near Saqqara, to research old Egyptian magic styles and find a so called magical gemstone. King Unus ruled for around 30 years long ago, he worshiped Apep. He knows that there is another group going exploring with another scholar, Eumenes, under Zorba the Cilecian, an enemy of Jason and cousin of Archi, of 6 guards. They are already on the way and are a day ahead of them. He calls on Barypos to help him as family, they agree to go and will leave tomorrow. Zeno says he has camels with all the food and supplies that they will need ready along with two slaves to look after the animals. Archi, Jason, Telamon and I go into the city to look for a good guide and any info on the streets about this place.  We find guide who will go with us for 1 ½ dr a day.  We find out that Apep is the god of Chaos, Death, the Soul and the Afterlife often seen as a giant snake. Also that many that who go out to Saqqara never come back or come back changed.  We decide to pay the next 6 months of our rent on the house to save having to look after all the sliver. So we pay 750dr of the 1500dr rent. We then spend the rest of our time praying or resting for Archi and preparing equipment.

Next morning Zeno turns up early and leads us to his 8 camels, Zeno and Archi both ride their donkeys, while the rest of us ride camels with Telamon’s horse tied behind the one he is riding. For the first 3 days all passes fine as we are mainly in settled lands under Greek control. We talk about trying to take a short cut across rather than follow the standard route. This would allow us to gain time but we decide it is too much risk. Archi also spends time talking with the slaves to improve his Egyptian, they talk about the terror and fear of looting a tomb.

Once we are four days from Alex, on a cloudy low wind day we see dust raising of to the side. This is about 500m away so we dismount and prepare. As the dust gets nearer, around 400m, we can make out 15 people. At around 300m we can see that they seem to be armed, are they hostile or like us travellers? We soon get an answer as at around 200m they stop and five of them step forward and loose arrows at us. All five arrows miss but at least we know what to do next. The unknown enemy seem to be ten spear and five archers all Egyptian looking.

Telamon starts to charge towards them on his horse, moving at a trot at first. Jason takes a long range shot at the spear but sees no result. The next minute or so is full of action. Telamon closes and throws two javelins at the spearmen but and takes one out he then alters direction to hit one of the archers who had moved to the sides as the spear closed on our camels. Jason keeps shooting and starts to run towards the side of the spear block as he does so. Archi with me nearby starts to us his sling on the spear block. As Telamon closes he and his horse are hit by arrows, but he keeps control of his horse. Telamon charges past an archer swinging his sword, the archer dives under his horse to evade and Telamon adjusts his swing but fails to move his already disabled left arm out of the way and chops it off at the elbow. Telamon falls from his horse at the feet of two archers.

[A fumbled attack with a critical evade, good reason to always have a luck point left]

A cheer from the Egyptians follows the fall of Telamon and the spear block breaks into two one part heading towards Jason the other towards Archi and I as we continue to shoot. The two archers try to ignore looting Telamon and try to concentrate on shooting Jason, however they are distracted and tangle each other, they then go to loot Telamon and ignore the fight.

Jason at least gets a good hit by shooting into the flank of the spear; he manages a lethal hit on the left arm of one. I am also near enough to jog and throw at the spear closing on me and Archi, I hit a shield and render it useless.  I then get the next spearman in his left leg, as he has lost his shield protection with sprinting, with my next javelin. With only four spears left I charge in. I take the shieldless spearman out by sticking my spear into his head. The three remaining spear turn on me and I take a serious wound in my right arm.

Jason is still skirmishing with the spear near him shooting and running. Archi at last gets a hit with his sling on the left of the spears facing me. I evade away drawing the three spears after me I kill the leading one.  Jason and Archi both take another spear out of the fight and the rest flee. With three already dead Jason chases those fleeing and takes down another three, while Archi goes to bring healing to Telamon. I finish off a couple of the injured ones. That makes 8 of the 10 spearmen down and two plus the five archers escaping.  It would be a good victory if not for poor Telamon, Archi removes what’s left of his lower arm and sows it up. He will be left with a fairly useless upper arm but he is still alive and it was his left.

Jason and I loot the bodies and try and find our arrows, sling shot and javelins. Jason shot 14 arrows and found 7 of them, Archi used 10 shot and found 5 while Telamon and I used four javelins and I found three of them. The dead enemy were Egyptians and we found some 76 obols on them along with the eight spears. We also found a note written in Egyptian but in a Greek style on one of the, may be the leader, asking them to attack any group coming this way and they will receive 10dr per head. Zeno is pleased we have seen the attack of but concerned about the note.

 

Earlier parts of the story can be found here 

The Odyssey of BARYPOS of TEGEA Chapter 6 Part 3


Part 3

The Island

 

Barybus gives his fancy sword from Ariarathes II to the temple of Poseidon for his surviving the wreck. With Jason and Telamon giving their crowns to their temples as well the gods have done well from us. We decide to take a few days out at the gym and other places before dealing with the island again. Jason trains with his shield trying to learnt how to parry with it. [needs 2 months so it will be at formable for the first then had for the second] meanwhile we need some light source to go underground so we set Archi, our inventor, to working out a portable directional light, Barybus sings and Jason plays to inspire him as he works on it.  He comes up with a bronze cylinder with smoothed insides and a cut-out with a movable shutter over it. Inside it has an oil reservoir and a wick. When lit and with the shutter open it throws a light forward reflecting of the smooth insides.  This has required the help of a bronze craftsman a couple of days and 40dr, the light is so bright it helps us see into the shadows better [+5% perception].

 

We head back to the island at dawn and go into the first cave we find, Barybus first with Jason following with the lantern, then Archi and Telamon. The 1m hole slopes down 3m then opens up into a cave around 8x4m and 2m high, The area is wet with small pools on the floor along with moss and roots. Barybus sees two figures at the furthest end of the cave, they are in scraps of clothes and have running sores on their skin, we all move in and spread out in a line. Archi speaks to them in Egyptian, no response. Jason speaks loudly and slowly in Greek, ‘do you speak Greek?’  A babel of noise comes from the figures.

Arh Archi says ‘that means no in Egyptian.’

Archi starts a conversation in Egyptian taking his time with each statement.

Archi says ‘Who are you?’

The figures say something which Archi doesn’t understand, a name he assumes.

Archi says ‘Why are you living here?’

‘Put by family as infected’

Archi says ‘Put by family as infected’

‘Yes’

Archi, ‘What’s wrong with you?’

‘Skin Sores’

Archi says, ‘how many of you are there?’

The figure shadows its hands many times.

Archi, ‘why not take the food?’

‘we eat fish and roots’

Achi waves and says, ‘by’

We leave the cave and head back to the city.

 

Archi and I go to see Strategi Imbrus, we bath first and wear our good tunics. We are shown in to him, after a while, by a slave had us wait. He receives us with sweet nibbles and wine, he talks politely to us and we bring up the business of the island contract. After an exchange of information and a haggle over the fee we accept the stated fee and contract Imbrus tells us his secretary will deal with payment once the job is done. We did find out the name of the contractors building there, ‘Hercules Construction’ when heavy lifting is needed.  We intend to visit them.

 

Telamon joins me for a visit to the contractors; we manage to get them to agree to give us an old barge and use of a tow boat. We intend to put the lepers on the barge and tow them around the city to take them to another leper colony. We also get them to supply some old clothes and rations for the lepers.  This came about after we explained that it was in his interests to be able to get on with his contract and could include the costs in his overrun costs.

 

That night we head back to the island with a Egyptian speaking slave from Imbrus, along with clothes, food and torches. Telamon sees people on the island as we approach, he says he has counted on his 7 fingers 10 times so there are more than 70 on the island.  Not all seem to be fishing and some seem very dead but walking around. After a discussion we think we need to help these dead souls on their way over the river to the underworld. To do that requires a couple of obols for each body buried in devotion to Hades.  So we enter a cave, dig a hole and put 45dr in obols in it, we then call on Hades having sung the hymnos, a religious song, first.. Jason is the one to call on Hades as the one with the best devotion and being used to making calls on the gods.

 

Alas things do not go to plan….. [the player fumbles the call]  see what happens next time.

 

Earlier parts of the story can be found here 

The Odyssey of BARYPOS of TEGEA Chapter 6 Part 2 ‘The Games’


Part 2 The Games

With us altogether living in a home Telamon is renting which comes with slaves to look after the place and us. The house is costing 1,000dr including all the slaves for the year, we just have to pay extra for food, clothes etc. this will add 1/4 of the normal cost of living to our social standard each. We set out to find useful employment, by going to the Gymnasium however first I need to go to the temple of Poseidon to give my Desirable Kopis from Ariarathes II with sliver-wire hilt and etching in the blade plus a sliver and red leather scabbard for rescuing me from the sea.

These are the main notices in the Gymnasium offering employment or activity.

Ptolemaic Summer 44 Olympic Games starting in a week

Strategi Imbrus requires help with a vital issue for the city.

Tanis Taxes collection see Dioiketes [chief economic minister] Apollonius

Scholar Zeno wants some help next month, apply to Museium

Scholar Eumenes wants some help next month, apply to Museium

Nicon the ivory merchant offers a business opportunity

Various guard duties for rich Greeks going about there business.  [most last a week and bring in 4dr as well as food and accommodation]

Entertainer wanted standard rate of 1dr a day, apply Pheres.

 

Telamon and Jason decide to take part in the games, Telamon  wants to take part in the Pankration and Hippis Javelin throwing. While Jason will do the sprints and the music competition. The rest of us will watch and cheer them on. Archi goes to talk with Imbrus to find out what the city needs doing.  He is a cousin of Ptolomy a man in his 60’s with experience of war in the past. Bald, heavy set with a scared face.  He lives in the royal court and has a meeting hall/office there to do the cities business. Imbrus gives the following infomation.  There is a small rocky island, 200m x 80m, outside of Alex is being turned into a Necropolis for Greeks, however the workers mainly Egyptians are afraid of the dead in caves their and need reassurance and protection. The island has been used in the past as a place of common burial for poor Egyptians. Imbrus, wants the workers encouraged and protected, he offers to pay 300dr for the jobs completion which he wants done within a month. There where 100 Egyptian slaves working on building a temple and necropolis on the island. At the moment they are clearing the ground of rocks but are afraid of the caves. The job is to give confidence to the workers. The construction company tried using their own protection but they ran away with the slaves. There are rumours that there are people covered in sores and scraps of clothing in the caves, these seem to be what is disturbing the workers.  Archi says he will look into it and let Imbus know if he and his friends wish to help.

 

Jason goes to see Dioketes Apollonius at the place about his tax needs, he needs the taxes and he and Ptolemy have decided Tanis has to pay tax and it needs to be collected. Apollonius is a man in his 40’s short and with a squint in his left eye. The state is looking for a small force to go to Tanis, it is about 25 leagues from Alex about 4 days march, and enforce the tax rules and collect the taxes of 6 talents.  The state will levy 10 Stichos [each of 8 men] for the mission,  1 Hippeis of Javelin; 5 Pisoli – 2 archer, 1 sling, 2; 4 Peltast.  The state will pay 1/2 a talent [3,000dr] in sliver on return of the taxes. The collectors will be required to pay the troops levied.  Jason tell Apollonius that he will let him know if its a job they want.

 

Over the next few days we argue about these jobs, Archi wants to do the island first to give the group some extra sliver, Jason wants to do the big tax job first as it pays more.  Acrhi argues that as they only get paid for the taxes after they have got them they need sliver up front to cover costs. Archi says it would be good to check out the island job to see what it entails first Telamon agrees and we plan to do this after the games. However before this Telamon on his way to the Gymnasium came across a fire, he tries to take control and organise fire fighting but everyone ignores him. He can see four trapped people, a family of adults and children. Again he tries to organise the people around, either watching or trying to put the fire out. So he goes into the fire to try and rescue the family himself. First he doses himself with water and puts a wet cloth across his mouth, then he rushes in. He picks up and carries each person out of the building jumping across holes and debris. Eventually he gets all four out, then he collapses to the ground unconscious, he has suffered bad burns to his right leg and his head as well as smoke and heat damage to his lungs. Lucky someone heard him say where he lived as he passed out and he was taken there hailed as a hero. Archi who was in uses his healing skills on Telamon healing his lungs and head but can’t do much for his right leg. Jason is out seeing Abbas to get the two sliver two headed dogs made to lift the curse. Abbas is please to see him again and is happy to help, Jason spends 235dr on his and Telamon 360dr on his.  A couple of days later the offerings are ready and Jason and Telamon, still not feeling wonderful, take them to the shine to Hades they found before. The acolyte receives the offerings in Hades name and removes the curse, this helps Telamon as it lessens his burn injuries. Telamon now only needs a couple of more days to recover from his burns just short enough for him to be able to compete in the games which are in a few days.

 

Archi goes to ask about the island amongst the Egyptians but finds out nothing more than he already knows. He does however notice that he is being followed on his way back by five tough rough looking Egyptians. He starts to run up a main street, with everyone trying to get out of the way, but they are catching him so he stops and tries to reason with them. This fails and as they close up to him he hands his money pouch over to them which has 70dr in it. They turn and leave him alone.

 

Ptolemaic Summer 44 Olympic Games

The Games are religious so all Greek cults are present with celebrations in the evenings, the city is crowded with visitors and Greeks from within Egypt. The prize for each event is a  golden Diadem worth 300dr, they will be hard forte for, but the honour of taking part is also important.

List of events and any favourites for each event.

Running  –  Done Naked – Sprint 1 stade; Sprint 2 stade Long race of 20 stade over first 3 days with the Hoplite race on the 4th, 4 stades in full military armour.  [stade = 200m]

Favourite’s – Grlos of Alexandria; Leonidas of Rhodes; Astylos of Alexandria

Equestrian – Horse race over 20 stade; 4 horse and 2 horse chariot races, Held over the 6 days

Favourite’s –  Aster of Macedon [rival of Telemon]; Pendion of Alex; Billstiche of Alex

Combat – All Naked – 1 contest a day

Wrestling;        Favorite’s – Tmolus of Sparta; Vettias of Thebes; Orges of Alex

Pankration       Favorite’s – Diagoras of Alexandria ; Aster of Macedon [rival of Telemon]; Pandion of Sinope

Boxing             Favorite’s –  Milo of Croton; Diagoras of Alexandria; Agesidamos of Alex

Pentathlon – All Naked – Running 2 laps, Long Jump, Discus, Javelin and Wrestling  – done over last day

Winner is the contestant who scores highest when all scores are added together

Favorite’s –  Kallipos of Athens; Gorgoe of Messene; Timon of Alexandria

Throwing – Foot Javelin throw; Riding Javelin throw, Discus  over 3 days

Favorite’s –  Sodamos of Alex; Damatrios of Thebes; Moschos of Alex

Social – Singing, Music, Poetry,   each is a separate contest over two days people can enter more than one

Favorite’s –  Euryades of Alex; Aristodamos of Athens; Leonidas of Alex

 

Archi looks for a job acting as a guide to the city and games for the week as he is not competing and with a year of living here knows his way around. He soon finds someone who wants a guide, after all there are many visitors of all classes in the city, finding one who wants an intelligent guide is not that hard. Jason’s one Stade sprint is first however Leonidas of Rhodes wins, Jason does ok.  Next day he is in the two Stade race which he wins in a tight race. The third and fourth days he is involved with the music event this time he does it for the temple of Apollo and Knossos, however Leonidas of Alexandria wins. Telamon starts his games with the Pankration he starts by dedicating the fights to Hercules. Inspired Telamon goes on to win his fights and take the crown, beating his rival, Aster, later he gives the crown to the temple of Hurcules. Moschos of Alexandria wins the Hippis javelin throwing with Telamon doing well.  Over the games various competitors injure themselves pulling limbs and even some broken bones, the people love it. Each evening the celebrations fill the city with religious pageantry and feasts.

 

During the week we carry on the discussions about which job to do first. Archi has found out more about Apollonius he is corrupt and takes bribes to inflate the cost of a job. This makes them unsure if they can trust him to pay them, so think that will make sure they take their fee out before giving the rest of the taxes to Apollonius. In the end we decide to recon the island to see if that job is doable before we go any further.

 

We hire a boater for the day and get him to row us to the island then wait off shore for us. Archi soon finds a hole in the ground which leads to caves and calls out anyone there. First in Greek then Egyptian, then Aramaic, finally Thracian. other than the echo of his voice he hears nothing, he then tries the same at a couple of other holes with the same result.  Telamon says he will look around the island and finds  of these holes which lead down into the darkness, each is 1m high and wide so he has to stop right down to enter.  In the darkness he can see nothing, but the walls and floor are wet. We decide to make a crude table from flotsam to leave food on and see if it has gone next day.

 

Next day we go and See Imbrus we ask wither there are other places for lebers around the city and if we can bring any on the island to them.  There are it seems but we are not going to be allowed to bring lepers through the city to get there. When we get back to the island we find that the food is still there, it has not been taken, why not? We wonder. Jason thinks it is because the sore ridden people in scraps are the mummies he has herd exist in Egypt. Archi thinks they are just lepers who are shy.  Also why didn’t the sea birds take the food?  all very strange.

 

Earlier parts of the story can be found here 

 

The Odyssey of BARYPOS of TEGEA Chapter 6 Part 1 Arrival at Alexandria


The Odyssey of BARYPOS of TEGEA

Chapter 6

Part 1

Arrival at Alexandria

Late Spring AG44 [268bc]

During the last year I Barypos have been in Athens taking part in the Mysteries and improving my status in them. I manage to attain dedicated member and receive a the gift of Voice from the god’s. I train in my seamanship and swimming skills and read up on Egypt where I will be going next, I live the life of a rich freeman with all the sliver I now have. In the spring of AG44 I set sail on a merchant ship to head to Alexandria and met up with my companions.

 

During the last year Jason has been in Crete, improving his standing in the cult of Apollo, he is now a dedicated member although he did not ask Apollo for a divine gift, he thinks being a diviner of the future is gift enough for now. He has found trainers to help him in his divination, seamanship, singing, oratory and influence, he has continued to work and even though he has the sliver has stayed a humble freeman.

In his own words  “Never had so much money before so I considered heading for a big city and trying to pass myself off as a rich freeman but in the end decided to remain a humble servant of the Temple of the Sun & the Moon and go home.” “By reading the signs I encountered some honest Captains and good ships and shipmates who allowed me to work my passage back to Crete and provided some training for a fair fee. Warned Captain that if he did not delay sailing we would encounter Cilecian dogs but they backed off when our arrows started to fly showing that this Cretan ship was awake and well armed.  Got back home with my offering of the gold horse and reported that I had passed on the cult messages and had fought against the evil Celts of the Chaos Rune as ordered. The Minotaur seemed pleased to see me but he never says much and it has been all change on the Moon Side of the temple. One unfortunate result of which is that no one seemed that certain about why I had been sent to Anatolia. Fortunately, that most kind & noble Lady Cleopatra is now Priestess of Britomartis/ Artemis at the temple and kept the promise that the temple would employee me and provide training in temple skills as I try to become a devoted member of cult. Think I am in love with Lady Cleopatra…….a very model of the fair Artemis and as far above a poor love sick  Shepherd. Fortunately or unfortunately, the worsening situation between the Kings of Syria and Egypt plus trouble on the mainland has done nothing to reduce the risk to the Temple or its property from the Chaos things of the White Mountains and from pirate raiders so good archer’s are still needed.

 

 

Archi, spent this time in Alexandria at the Museion doing research, working as a teacher and gaining respect as a teacher and student. He has learnt some Aramaic and got to know the streets while also improving his Oratory, Insight into people, more about treating wounds and illness, his Egyptian language, Science, Mechanisms, Commerce and unarmed combat. Archi is careful with his living style using most of his sliver for studies.

 

Telamon has spent the last year in Thebes, living as a common freeman. While there he became a dedicated member of the cult of Hercules gaining the gift of Vigor. To do so he had to train and learn Oratory and Exhort.

 

Rumours around in Late Spring AG44 [268bc]

Both Ptolemy and Antiochus I are eyeing up Palestine and Coele-Syria again. Ptolemy as his northern border with the Seleucid’s and the Seleucid’s as the gateway to Egypt. In this The rebellious Jews are important. It was only 3 years ago that the last war over this area finished.

Decree of Chremonides signed, creating an alliance between Sparta, Athens, and Ptolemy II, directed against Antigonus of Macedon.

Seleucus, son of Antiochus, is said to be in rebellion in the east.

Philetaerus of Pergamon  is said to be planning an attack on the Galatians in the area.

The Romans are establishing a Roman colony with Latin rights of Beneventum in south Italy They have also declared that they will be founding a new city at Rimini on the East coast of Italy.

 

Alexandria

Alexandria is a great city founded by Alexander and now the capital of the Ptolemaic empire. It is a majestic city the biggest any of us have ever seen or been in, bigger even than Athens.

Laid out on a grid pattern, like all new cities, Alexandria occupies a stretch of land between the sea to the north and Lake Mareotis to the south; a man-made causeway over three-quarters of a mile long extends north to the sheltering island of Pharos, thus forming a double harbour, east and west. On the east is the main harbour, called the Great Harbour; it faces the city’s chief buildings, including the royal palace and the famous Library and Museion. At the Great Harbour’s mouth, on an outcropping of Pharos, stands the lighthouse, the lighthouse is reckoned as one of the Wonders of the World for its unsurpassed height (140 metres or 460 ft); it is a square, fenestrated tower, topped with a metal fire basket and a statue of Zeus the Saviour.

 

In the last 60 years the city has inherited the trade of ruined Tyre and become the centre of the new commerce between Europe and the Arabian and Indian East, the city is now larger than Carthage. It is the main Greek city of Egypt, with an extraordinary mix of Greeks from many cities and backgrounds.  It hosts a Dionysian festival that features a 180-foot-high golden phallus, 2,000 golden-horned bulls and a gold statue of Alexander carried by elephants. Alexandria has grown by supplying papyrus, jewels, glass and grain to the Greeks and others.

 

 The Construction of Alexandria, the city has monumental buildings that have been and are being erected in. The Heptastadion connects Pharos with the city and the Lighthouse of Alexandria followed soon after, as did the Serapeum, all under Ptolemy I. The Museion was finished under Ptolemy II the current ruler.

The Ptolemy’s are being careful to maintain the distinction of its population’s three largest ethnicities: Greek, Jewish, and Egyptian. Alexandrian Greeks place an emphasis on Hellenistic culture, in part to exclude and subjugate non-Greeks.  The law in Alexandria is based on Greek-especially Attic-law. There are two institutions in Alexandria devoted to the preservation and study of Greek culture, which help to exclude non-Greeks. In literature, non-Greek texts entered the library only once they had been translated into Greek. There are ostentatious religious processions in the streets that display the wealth and power of the Ptolemies, but also celebrated and affirmed Greekness.  Alexandria is also home to the largest Jewish community in the world. The Septuagint, a Greek translation of the Hebrew Bible (the Torah and other writings), is produced here. Jews occupy two of the city’s five quarters and worshipped at synagogues.

 

The Ptolemies have fostered the development of the ‘Museion’, the Library of Alexandria and associated Museum, into a renowned centre for Hellenistic learning.  The Library was located in the Mouseion, the Temple of Muses, it was part of the Royal Court of the Ptolemy’s, a huge complex that covers a large area and includes a zoo and botanical gardens.. It also includes areas for all of the arts and performances of such.

The library boosts hundreds of thousands  of scrolls, one foot wide 20 foot long  to about 60 pages. All visiting ships are checked for manuscripts which where seized and copied with the copy being returned. The library has special rapid-copying shops where scholars can get copies of a scroll within a day or two.

 

The outskirts of the city are mainly a mix of Greek and Egyptian low class buildings around the harbours and roads in. As you reach the centre you come across the big posh buildings for the wealthy and the state. The Museion houses the Major Temple of the Mesues. The Royal court also has a Minor Temple to each of the god’s, and Alexander it also has a Major Temple to Serapis. Around the city are various Modest Shrines to each of the Greek and Egyptian god’s.

 

The Rules of the City, Greeks are allowed to carry a sword all other weapons are illegal. Important people tend to always go about with a few sword armed guards. Most minor crimes, stealing, cheating, ect., are tried by group of citizens and punished by fines, if they can not be paid slavery instead. Mayor crimes, Murder, Assault, ect,, are tried by city rulers and punished by slavery or death.  The City Guards are Thureophoui and normally armed with Dory and Kopis with a Thureos and Boeotian Helm

The cost cost per week of accommodation and food minimum 4dr rising to 12dr for a rich freeman.  This gives you a rented room or small house food ect and a slave or more to look after you and your stuff.

 

Our first adventure in Alexandria

A slave comes up to Jason and tells him his master Abas the Silversmith would like to speak to him. Archi know this man a man who makes sliver items for the followers of Apollo. When Jason, Telamon and I, Archi has yet to make it here, get there Abas calls on Jason in Apollos name for his help in finding his son Philip aged 11. Abas has come to Jason as the temple told him to when he asked the god what he should do. He has no idea who or why his son would be taken, the slave Cadmus say’s he was hit from behind and when he woke Philip was gone. He ran straight back home to report. He has a bloodied head where he was hit and a bruised leg.  Archi examines Cadmus and says that he was hit in the head badly. SO as Jason is honour bound to help we set off to investigate.

 

Reaching the area near the main market where the attack happened we question the market traders. Jason talks with the Greeks nearby but due to his lack of status, they think he is a slave, they say nothing. Archi talks to the Egyptians, as he speaks that strange language, he gets some info as does Telamon when he speaks to the Greeks. It seems two large men with dogs hanging around for some time.  They admit they saw they attack but it was over quickly and they did not want to intervene when the two big men with dogs where involved, they did not realize that a child had been taken. The men where Macedonian looking with dark hair, the dogs where big guard dogs with bronze helms depicting two heads. Archi says that these dogs could belong to Ptolemy’s son, so the men must have access to them. Its now five hours since Philip went missing.

 

Telamon uses his skill in tactics to organise a search of the area of the attack. After two hours we have managed to find some clues. A Sliver symbol of a Vulture from a belt and blood on a wall with a bloody handprint. We decide to track the blood as far as we can. its takes quite a time before we lose the trail. Telamon stops and with me and Jason work through the information we have, we think the trail is leading us towards the harbour so continue that way and pick up some more blood signs, we are not sure they are the ones we are following or others.

 

We talk with locals and they recall seeing two men with dogs and a boy heading towards the shine of Hades. We go there and talk to the acolyte of Hades there. Telamon gets no helpful response but Archi says I believe he is lying. With some pressure applied the acolyte says that some followers where annoyed with Abas the silversmith over not making  worship items of Hades. He continues that they are Dymnos & Phaido however he does not know where they live in the harbour area, however they are sailors. With around 10 hours gone since Philip went missing we need to keep going, it is getting dark now. Archi wants to find some meat and herbs to drug the dogs if needed, he soon finds a local stall and purchases what he needs for a couple of drachmae.  While he is doing that Jason wants to see what the signs say about encountering Philip, so he looks at the birds as they settle for the night. As he needs witnesses and as many as he can get Telamon rounds up a crowd of locals.  Jason gets a vision but does not tell the others about it saying it was not relevant.

 

Archi talks to locals to find where these two men live and get directions. With eleven hours gone we wonder if Abas had had any demands yet but we feel we can not give up time looking for him to find out. We reach the sailors building where we believe the sailors and Philip are, it is a multi story building of many families so we need to be careful. When we get to the doorway of the room we want Telamon listens, but there is a lot of noise around here, but no dogs. He knocks and enters with Jason and Archi following. In the room are two men fitting the description with two women. Telamon asks ‘are you Dymnos & Phaido?’. ‘Yes the two men reply’. We ask for Philip they deny having a child here and the women back them up. Archi tries to pull on the women’s hearts but they still say we know nothing.  So Telamon intimates them with threats, and they admit to taking him to force Abas to make items for Hades as well, however we realised him an hour ago he should be nearly home now with the message that Abas must produce things for Hades or else.

 

We take our leave, Abas and the authorities can deal with the crime if they want we want to make sure Philip has got home ok.  When we reach Abas’s home Philip is there having been picked up by the watch and brought home. Abas is very please with us and asks for Apollo to bless us however that means we take a curse from Hades well at least Jason and Telamon do as Archi has no truck with gods and I was not there.   Gain Hostility of Hades ‘Curse’ causes reduction of one in HP in all locations [removed by a offering buried in the ground of a sliver two headed dog worth at least 100dr each. Blessing of Apollo one of [choice now] Art, Musicianship, Singing; Lore Animals, or Healing at one difficulty grade easier when used during this year. Jason takes Musicianship and Telamon Lore Animals.

 

I on the over hand end up shipwrecked off the Egyptian shore, the ship I was travelling in got hit by a massive wave which came from nowhere. The ship was turned over and we lost everything except my life as I swam ashore. I made my way to Alexandria to find my friends and make a new fortune.  [Lose party funds and all of Barypos gear but he survived]  Jason, when I see him, tells me he saw this happen when he went to divine the future but he could not inform me it was going to.  Now we are altogether again we can see what fate and the gods have in store for us.

 

 

 

The Stories of Errath the Bard Chapter 4 Part 11


The Stories of Errath the Bard Chapter 4

The Iron Flow River & The Censer of Weal

Earlier Chapters here

————————— Part 11  —————————-

After a days rest Rathulagon flew us up two at a time and puts us down on a mountain near where the shaft, from his cave, comes out, this is a snow covered steep slope and we need to find a way to get down back to the road and back to Lastever.

 

With limited supplies and no cold weather clothes this could be very dangerous however we set to with all the skill and luck we have. [GM – I use an Extended Conflict to work through this climb, PC’s Con Pool V’s Mountain pool of 16 and Athletics skill V’s 75%. Survival will add 1/5 to each players Athletics if made. Roll each day and they reach the road when the Mountains Pool = 0. Failure means D6 Pool loss, half pool lost become Stressed all rolls @ -20%. 0 Con means take D6 Fatigue and if  another Athletics roll was also failed take D6 falling Damage to 1 random location.  One days stop will recover 1/4 of Pool]

 

Thorn uses his Survival and Navigation skill’s to help the group. The first day is slow going and they cover little ground and suffer from the cold. The second day I realise that I should be using my Athletics to help the others my finding a path for them, as my Star Sign of the Watchman means that they will get a better bonus however I can only really do this twice,  we get further this day. Third day is slow again, and we get very little distance, we are all suffering from the cold and climb, but managing to keep going. Forth day is slow again and I can no longer help the other as much also Thorn fails in his supplying us with food and water. Day five and I and stressed and so Gnoman takes the lead with his unnatural climbing ability, he is a thief after all, and we do much better as we are now out of the snow and its more about the climb. Day 6 another good day we can see the road below us as we camp. Day 7 we reach the road, never have we been so glad to see a rutted road.

 

Now we are down it takes another day to reach the city of Lastever. We rest and buy new clothes, as ours are ruined. Rotnik takes the Censer to the temple. Next day ‘Rebril Moradin’ the High Priest & Thorin City leader receive the party at a banquet and give us a chest with the 1,000gp for the Censer. But they argue that they have not cleared the fort rather it has just been destroyed and so refuse to pay the extra 500gp. A argument starts but I claim it down and say ‘we should not ruin a good meal and celebration maybe we can sort this out tomorrow’. This all agree to and we finish a wonderful meal in our honour.

 

Next day we met up with Rebril and Thorin to make our case. However the fact that the fort is a destroyed smocking ruin counts against us and we can not get the extra 500 gold for clearing and re-garrisoning it. Thorn is not happy but has to except this, we do however ask about honours but only I get one, after all I did deal with the dragon. I am made a Bard of the City allowing me free access into the city and the right to entertain, as long as I always tell the story of the scared Elf who didn’t face off the dragon but hid in a human town. We then spend some time debating how to divide this gold, will James get any? what about Mackenzie and Rotnik? In the end we decide to be knid to James and give him a retainer of 50 gold from our payment while also giving 100 gold to both Rotnik and Mackenize. Thorn, Gnoman and myself each get 250 gold. Thorn then arranges to have the skull of the dwarf we had found buried properly. Then he gets a new helm, his is to badly damaged, and a right arm vambrace, while I find 2 new javelins. One of these turns out to be of wonderful quality giving me a bonus to my throwing and its damage.

 

So after a couple of days we made our way to Duvik Pass to find James. We find him still with Ernst learning spells and he tells us his story.

James story in Duvik Pass

Arrival at the Town Gates – Orid is on the gates and needs to levy the new tolls  Cost to enter 1sp per person animal or wagon.  James pays the 1sp. Then lets fellow member of fighters guild, Orid, know that a Kobold raiding party is threatening the road. Orid does send a party to clear the road around the city, he reports that he found some tracks but noting else. James also lets the guild know that the Dwarf Fighter-Priest Thorn has negotiated a Condetta contract from the Dwarf’s of Lastever worth 1500 GP on total success which if it comes off will greatly help Duvik Pass and it’s trade income. He then goes to call on Ersnt who is busy when James arrives and he will need to wait till evening before he is free then he will met James for supper.

 

Ernst is not happy that James has abandoned his apprentice. He will only James allow guild access to his spell book when James returns with him or promises to keep him for a year and a day. Ernst wants a biding oath from James to this end,  James happily gives this. James then points out that the only reason he left him safe & studying in Lastever is that he currently lacks the stealth for quick trips across dangerous territory.  Road is just not safe at current moment in time with White Fang Fort out of action. Ersnt accepts this and allows James guild access to his books. Ernst has an important meeting tomorrow with Lord Sendars and the council and will not be free to do any work for a few days, this will mean James has to spend more time than he expected to gain the spells he wants as Ernst only has a guild spell book for 1st level spells and will need to make a scroll of any 2nd level ones James wants for James to copy from, this increases both the time and the cost of accessing these spells.  The List of spells Ernst has, as he has adapted some spells to make them yellow those with a * are non standard

Cantraps – All in Spare spell book

1st level – All  in spare spell book plus he knows Non-standard *Affect Normal Fires; *Color Cascade; *Detect Magic; *Disk of Burden; *Faerie Lights; *Flaming Hands; *Light; *Magic Missile

2nd level – Dispel Magic; *Fireball; Haste; Hold Person; *Know Passions; Locate Object; Mage Lock; Read Thoughts; Tongues

Next few days – While waiting to spend time with Ernst and learning new spells James practices and thinks about flying so far he has had some easy flights and a crash in the Mountains to study [he spends 3 EP on fly skill, also spends 1ER on combat skills] James has created his Fly spell known as “Wings of the Arials”. The original spell developed by Arial Elf Mages to give their earth bound and wingless kin a taste of the Sky.  Developed out of Levitation Magic first used to reach Elf Tree Houses without use of ladders/tree climbing the Fly Spell gives the target of the spell full horizontal movement and the ability to glide and soar as well as move up and down.  Handy to pop over to the neighbours for dinner and a song (or to drop things on them if they are annoying).  Spell causes a of mystic wings to grow from the caster’s back. In version of the spell used by James Ernst & the Duvik Pass Guild these wings are yellow and red, due to use of pinch of Red Dragon powder to replace some other more common components and influence of Ernest. When under influence of the spell a hit in the Chest area results in need to make a hard fly skill roll, a failed roll means only able to levitate in place, a second easy roll is then needed to recover or character will start to fall, a fumble results in falling out of the sky instantly.

James goes, after a couple of days, to see Father Sam, Ernest the Yellow & Lord Senders to advise that the group have requested help with the Haunting from both the Dwarfs & the Elves. Gordon has taken the Dragon Heart to the King & Queen of Loreddell, they might send a Cleric to pick up the Crystal Crescent Moon encased in Brass holy symbol of Lumiya & perhaps the Elven Art work both of which we have left on display at the temple until the Elves claim it. You can not really haggle with Elven Royalty but they may be gracious enough to help, it will take some months before any answer can come. However Rebril arrives, from Lastever, and does the job of removing the ghost from the mine and town.

 

James Copies Feather fall, 1st level, from the guild book with apprentices watching how its done as they do it as well. Then he starts on the second level spells he wants. Ernst however will only commit to creating two scrolls for James at a time, taking him 8 days. Then it will be a couple of weeks before he can do the other two each taking him 4 days, therefore it will be a month before James is finished getting his spells and learning to Fly. By then he has also regained the magic used on his courier, to the elves, meaning he is either dead or carried out his mission.

 

Spells James works on with Ernst – Yellow Fireball 2nd level Swapped for ‘Wings of the Arials’. This Scroll takes Ernst 4 days to make and takes James 1/2 day to scribe into spell book costs 200+ for ink to put into your book. Haste 2nd level cost 200sp for scroll 4 days to make  1/2 day to scribe into spell book cost of ink 200+sp.

Locate object 2nd level cost 200sp for scroll 4 days to make  1/2day to scribe into spell book cost of ink 200+sp. Tongues 2nd level cost 200sp for scroll 4 days to make  1/2day to scribe into spell book cost of ink 200+sp.

 

With James still needing time we all have to wait at the town for a couple of weeks before we head to South Borough and Trumpton, the Halfling village where Gnoman comes from. While waiting Gnoman gets his long wanted Longbow and starts to learn how to use it. We are again given a feast for the work we have done to free the town from the plague and then the ghost.  As winter draws in we leave the area and head to Trumpton to see the family of Gnoman and explain about his sisters death.

 

Carrot Gemstone is not a happy father when he hears of the loss of his daughter. He blames Gnoman for taking her into the cave, even if he thought it was better than leaving her in the plague ridden town. ‘Why didn’t you send her home he cries’ Gnoman has no answer and accepts his fathers scorn. He explains that we sent a messenger with a message however it appears Meria and Ron never turned up, we wonder what happened to them. We do not stay here long and move to Greymoor which we reach by end of the year. What with the cost of travelling and then Guild dees and Taxes we do not have a lot left from our adventures in the Iron Flow River area. With winter coming on we settle in to Greymoor  doing odd jobs, guild work or working for the guard for now. We have all learnt a lot from this adventure and spend time at our guilds improving ourselves, all of us are now at the second level in at least one Guild area and wonder what our next adventure will be, also we remember those who died helping us in our journey they were not as lucky as us in dangerous situations.

The Stories of Errath the Bard Chapter 4 Part 10


The Stories of Errath the Bard Chapter 4

The Iron Flow River & The Censer of Weal

Earlier Chapters here

————————— Part 10  —————————-

 We move on down the natural steps ahead of us which brings us to a opening on our left. Mack shines his light into it and it seems to be another passage which bends after about 20′. We stop and listen and Gnoman thinks he hears something so gets us all to be quite. He hears shuffling sounds, we decide to move on down the main passageway which leads to more natural steps leading further underground. James would have so loved this! We come to a Y junction with us arriving from the bottom. Again we listen and Gnoman hears flapping like something flying maybe from the left. Again we continue deciding that resting here is not going to be of any help. The Trog wants us to go right which leads us to a massive cave

We have entered an enormous cavern. The ceiling towers above you, perhaps over100 feet in height or more. Long, jagged stalactites hang from the ceiling by the hundreds in tight clusters, and great, convoluted draperies of stone hang along the walls. The floor beneath our feet is loose, sandy soil. Beyond this small beach is a great pool of dark water that goes as far as we can see. Since we entered this cavern a continuous roar has filled our ears. Looking to the north you now see the source: or at least the spray glittering in your light, of a great waterfall. A flat bridge constructed of stone slabs stretches across the water ahead of us to reach another larger sandy beach far to the west. The bridge appears to be a primitive work, yet it looks stoutly constructed, and the builder was clever enough to include small handrails on either side and a walking surface made from giant, flat slabs of grey stone. The beach to the west appears unoccupied except for a scattering of boulders and large rocks here and there illuminated by scattered light from above. You can dimly make out what might be a cave entrance beyond the far beach. The majesty of this cavern is nearly overwhelming and we cannot help but believe that we have discovered the great scaly god’s lair at long last.

Gnoman looks up not wanting to be surprised while Thorn checks the water for refilling their skins. As Thorn thinks the water, which is flowing quickly, should be fine he wades away from the shore to get water, as it will not have sand etc in it. Rotnick holds the rope tied to him as he does this. I, Errath, stand by the entrence to keep watch while Mack holds the Trog off to the side.

Look out I shout as two Troglodyte zombies shuffle towards me only a few feet away. The zombies reach me and I ready my club, not having time to throw a javelin. Gnoman moves to get line of sight, while I get hit, in the chest, by one zombie while by parry allows me to fall back from the other one. The chest blow dazes me.

Gnoman releases a sling shot from his sling and a zombie hits its right leg and knocks it down. I parry the other zombie attack but miss with my club. Gnoman starts to reload his sling I again parry the zombie attack and this time manage to hit it in the chest with my club. Gnoman continues to load.

Gnoman lets go another sling shot at the fallen zombie hitting its right arm. I parry the zombie attack but miss my counter attack. Rotnik readies his mace and moves up, having helped Thorn from the water. Gnoman starts to reload his sling, I parry the zombie again and my club trips it up as I hit its left leg. Rotnik also attacks but misses.

With both zombies on the ground it is easy to finish them off now that Rotnik has joined me. However just as we do we hear a roar and a flash. Lighting blasts from behind me catching Thorn, myself and Rotnik in its blast. Both of them burst into flame as their backpacks etc, catch fire, I am lucky as nothing catches fire.

Thorn seeing a Blue Dragon, the Scaly God!, flees heading for the passageway. Gnoman changes weapons to his hand crossbow. I use a potion to restore my very burnt body, I took more of the lighting blast than the other two.  Rotnik turns to face the dragon and flees in terror. Mackenzie, being a paladin, ignores the fear and challenges the dragon to a fight man on man.

The dragon accepts and they line up on the beach as I and Gnoman watch, only after Gnoman gives Mack one of his Blue Dragon slaying crossbow bolts to use as a dagger if he can.

The dragon is faster and strikes first with its claw, smashing into Mack’s right leg and only with luck not ripping it right off. Mack is dazed by the pain of his leg and stands.

The dragon lowers its head over Mack and swallows him in one gulp ripping his head off as he does so.

I start to sing as I run, about a dragon who having swallowed a paladin chokes on a crossbow bolt. Unfortunately this one doesn’t.

We stop a little way up the passage and think. Does this dragon have the censer or is it just another block in our journey to find it? How can we get past it or kill it. We still have one Blue Dragon Slaying Bolt for Gnomans hand crossbow left. Thorn also still has his potions of Giant strength and invisibility left in what is left of his backpack. Our plan is simple, Gnoman will sneak back to the cave invisible, he still has enough power to cast it on himself. Thorn will cast Silence on him and I will cast Barkskin as well. I will drink half of Thorns invisibility potion and Gnoman will have the other half for when he has to drop his spell. I will follow Gnoman into the cave as support.

Gnoman, carrying his cat, heads back into the cave with me following while the Dwarfs tend to their burns. Gnoman sees nothing so moves up to the bridge and checks it for traps, seeing none he moves onto it to cross over. Halfway across he notices that the central slab is dodgy and will tip if a human or Dwarf walk on it tipping them into the flowing water. Being a Gnome has its advantages thinks Gnoman.  He moves onto the other beach while I watch from the other side, not him of course he’s invisible.  Looking up Gnoman sees the outline of a hole in the roof with diffused light coming down it.

Moving over the beach Gnoman reaches the entrance they had seen from the other side. He has night vision thanks to his cat and can just about make out a long thin cave around 100′ by 20′ just in from the entrance is a pile of coins and gems with a scooped intended top next to it is a smaller pile of items, he can not see a dragon. Listening he can hear the breathing of the dragon, where is it?  Thinking maybe its in the pile or made itself look like the pile of coins Gnoman removes a coin. It comes way easily and a few others roll down the pile. He reaches out and touches just above the coins and feels a heaving body. A eye opens and the dragon says well I never it is a Gnome, I smelt you coming and wondered what you wanted, just what do you intend to do? Gnoaman puts up his hand crossbow and fires his dragon slaying bolt into what he hopes is the invisible dragons belly.

He draws his potion of invisibly and runs back towards the bridge as the dragon shacks itself and scrambles after him. It looks like the bolt of slaying didn’t work, such bad luck. Gnoman thinks his days might be numbered. I seeing the dragon coming after a visible Gnoman drink the potion of giant strength and throw my javelin at the dragon. I hit it in its forequarters where I can see the bolt sticking in it. This seems to daze the dragon who just hovers near the bridge. I quickly ready my second javelin and throw again.  Again I hit its forequarters and I force its surrender. I Errath forced a dragon to surrender.

We agree with the dragon that we will leave it alone if it gives us the Censer, flies us up out of the caves and destroys the goblins holding the fort. Rathulagon agrees, he was lucky not to die[he has used up his last luck point], he will do all of this after a days rest.