Alysia Rising

Rogues will be rogues

One evening Zedi approached me with a special mission. “Phildrin, I need you and Turk to retrieve some documents for me tonight. They should be in a satchel in a Crimson Guard lieutenant’s apartment. Here’s the address.”

Turk and I met and hashed out a rough plan. The lieutentant’s apartment was directly across from the Bastille so we decided to approach from the back near the river. We acquired a small boat, rowed it across the river and docked it half a block away from the building. After confirming which window was our target we waited in the shadows until we detected the diversion that Zedi had promised us. We later determined that he’d set a wagon on fire on the other side of the building.

We quickly and deftly scaled the wall, opened the window, and entered the apartment. Our lieutenant was in the next room looking out the front door at the diversion. I spied the satchel and a number of documents immediately and began acquiring them. Turk in the meantime set to making our mission appear to be a random breaking and entering event by grabbing everything that wasn’t nailed down. After finishing with the documents I assisted Turk and began searching for the types of thing that would typically be taken during a theft (at least what I think would be taken, having never done anything like this before.)

In retrospect I felt a little badly about taking the vast majority this young soldier’s wealth, but I consoled myself by considering that our actions furthered the goals of the greater good, etc., etc.

After a short time we decided we’d done enough and swiftly and silently left the room and began strolling down the street back to our boat. Amusingly, our victim noticed the open window (in retrospect I probably should have taken time to close that, but live and learn) and yelled after us, asking if we’d seen anybody suspicious. We feigned surprised and assured him that we saw nothing out of the ordinary and promised to let him know if we came across any bad guys. He seemed satisfied with our answer and ducked his head back in his apartment.

We met with Zedi not long after and he looked through the documents. He found what he was interested in, which was the schedule for a courier between the Bastille and the palace. Our next task was to acquire the satchel from the courier, who was likely a mid-level cleric with several bodyguards.

I’ll touch briefly on that operation but it was really so trivial that it barely need mentioning. Essentially Turk cast a spell which dazed the cleric and one or two of the four bodyguards. I ran forward, cut the strap on the satchel, grabbed it before it hit the ground and dashed off before any of them knew what hit them. Turk and I both trotted off without a scratch and the courier was empty handed and bewildered.

I do hope that our next mission for the cause is more challenging. Perhaps we will break into the Bastille or steal the crown jewels next time.

Journal page from Artemis

Every day that passes I feel the changes that are accruing around me are more than I can handle. I have yet to be able to truly establish anything that would help me in my goals. I wanted to have a haven from the political standing of the Azure Guard but Carol seemed to think that I didn’t need that. As grateful as I might be for the help with devil’s playing with powder under my tavern, it was still my problem to handle. The powder was going to be what I needed to establish myself with in the city and to enable me to catch the attention of certain officials within the city.

Powder_Keg.jpgDuring the month and half since my return to the northern continent I’ve have started wondering on how short my life will be over how long it could be. Dwarven army’s coming and elven civil war threats all at the same time. How has this nation stayed together at all.

Carol’s announcement of claiming his birth right is troubling for me. I have to find out what he expects from me in this. I feel the path he has chosen to take is one I may not be able to follow. If he wins his birth right where does it leave our “friendship?" Will I be shady person from his past or even worse, will I have to change my ways to live in my new “home?”

I wish this book had a wise intelligent being to hear my thoughts and give opinion and advice solely from what I’ve written.

"Liberty, Equality, Fraternity"
Game 20 -- Saturday, June 26, 2015 at 2:30 pm

Players Present

PCs with Minor Involvement

NPCs with Major Involvement

NPCs with Minor Involvement

Enemies with Major Involvement

  • Adrian Blackstone — Male Sylvan Elf who is a former Musketeer & a notorious assassin

Enemies with Minor Involvement

In Game Dates

Important Locations

Game 19 (Side Adventures) -- Do you know the Musket Man?

Phildrin wandered through the city in the mid-morning, keeping a low profile. He had a meeting with Turk soon, and he was trying to gather more information about the state of the city. As he was passing a tavern he glanced through the open door and thought he recognized Silas the bard sitting casually. The dark elf walked in, ordered a drink, and sat at an adjacent table.

After a quiet conversation Phildrin discovered that Silas was keeping an eye on the person who was thought to have shot Sonja; the suspect was upstairs and Silas was watching all possible exits. This interested Phildrin greatly; he suddenly had a vision of the look on Sonja’s face as the severed head of his would-be assassin was dropped in his lap.

“Want some company, Silas?”

Not long after, a very attractive woman, apparently a fille de joie, walked upstairs, knocked, and was let into the suspect’s room. Fifteen minutes later she left. She didn’t look particularly disheveled and after a hurried discussion Silas agreed that Phildrin should follow her.

A short time later the woman walked up the gangplank of a ship, the Sea Dove, where she was ushered into a cabin. Phildrin snuck on board and hid himself outside the window of the cabin and overheard the exchange.

“What do you mean he won’t come out? I paid him 100 gold to take care of him!”

“I know, but he said he’s being watched and he won’t come out until dark.”

“Damn him…I want you to gather some thugs and go take care of whoever is watching him. I need this taken care of!”

The woman left the cabin and slipped into the crowd. Phildrin followed soon after and hurried back to warn Silas.

Silas was, perhaps unsurprisingly, visiting with a young woman and so the dark elf decided to hide himself across the street where he had a good vantage to wait and see what would happen.

Soon the mystery woman arrived with four sailors in tow. The sailors sat by themselves and the woman walked to the back of the bar and began apparently flirting with another person. After a short time the woman apparently gave a signal and the sailors stood up and started making their way towards Silas. At that point Phildrin stepped out of the shadows and walked across the street into the bar. As he walked in he heard Silas explaining calmly to the sailors that they had no disputes and there was no reason for anyone to get hurt. The sailors looked confused and Silas pressed his point by offering to pay the sailors to simply walk away. This idea appeared to be amenable to the sailors and after a short exchange of coins Silas sat back down. Phildrin shrugged and stepped to the bar to order another wine.

The woman, visibly upset, whispered to the man she had been speaking to who promptly got up and strode directly to Silas.

“It’s about time for you to get up and come with me,” said the man.

“No, I don’t think that’s a good idea. Listen, we’re not enemies…I don’t want to fight you.” Silas continued for quite a while, seeming to confuse the man.

Finally the man seemed to get fed up with Silas’ stalling and drew his sword and main-gauche. “Listen, you can come quietly with me or you can die right here.” Silas began his spiel again and the man stabbed with his rapier, but somehow missed…perhaps he was blinded by the soaring rhetoric spewing out of Silas’ mouth.

Phildrin decided this would be a good time to assist his fellow Guardsman and charged across the tavern to stab the man. After making a solid hit and dancing back out of reach Silas said, “See? You’re not the only one with friends…if you don’t leave immediately this is going to end very badly for you.” This last intimidating comment was apparently too much for the attacker and he promptly fled.

In the meantime the mysterious woman had rushed upstairs and was in the room of the musketeer assassin. Phildrin ran up to the side door and Silas went to the front. Phildrin opened his door cautiously and barely avoided being ventilated by a musket ball. He rushed in, sword drawn, and rushed the musketeer, running him through with a rapier. Simultaneously, Silas broke a window in the front and leapt through it.

The musketeer apparently didn’t want to tangle with the dark elf and ran through the apartment, right through Silas. The bard took the opportunity to slash at the unarmored man and critically injured him. The man ran out of the room, leapt over the balcony, and began running away.

The woman, screaming for the Crimson Guard, ran out of the room and down the road. Phildrin quickly realized that it would be a bad idea to be seen chasing a woman screaming for help with his sword drawn, so he started following the musketeer, who had jumped into a sewer entrance. After a brief chase Phildrin caught up to the man and convinced him to surrender. He reluctantly decided that information would be more useful than his severed head idea he’d had earlier, so he led the musketeer to the safehouse where the Azure Guard would be meeting later that afternoon.

After leaving the man in the custody of the Halfling Guardsman, Phildrin met back up with Silas who happened to be at the Sailor’s Sprawl. Silas had done some quick searching of the musketeer’s room and found a list of potential “hits” including Sonja, Sir Carol, Guido Sarducci, and some others.

Seeing Sarducci’s name prompted Phildrin to pay a quick visit to his friend Ramone Sarducci. Ramone explained that the assassin was a former royal Musketeer and requested to have the man turned over to him since his cousin, Guido, was on the hit list. Phildrin respectfully declined, explaining that the Azure Guard needed to interrogate the man first. Ramone was even more interested in the man who hired the assassin, the captain of the Sea Dove. That man works for the Dwarves and has had it out for the Sarduccis for a while.

Game 19 -- From the Missives of Sonja the Habomination

Eponi Valley, August 1402

While we waited to return to Aedramir I asked about the Fae Bain sword that we had found and took it into my possession, I wanted to have that sword as a backup for the next time that I got lost in the dream realm; Dam faeries. The grip needed replacement and the sword itself needed some polishing so I took it in to Snowy Village to have it cleaned and repaired. I also learned that the Jeweler that we rescue owned a shop in Snowy Village and I enquired of his wife about a commission. Now all I needed to do was to get the design finalized.

We needed to do something about the horses and after much discussion we decided to contact Xander about the horses and lucky me I got the job. So that night I went to sleep, with my new sword in hand, and reached out to Xander and almost immediately contacted him. He was apparently anxiously awaiting a report from me so I had to go through everything that had happened. When I got to the horses the man like to have had a fit, I’ve never seen a man so in love with horses. After a bit of discussion and a little haggling we came to an agreement about what to do with the horses and how we would be compensated for them. I neglected to tell him anything about the tomb however and he seemed to notice that I was leaving something out and tried to push me about it but I said nothing.

The following days were a whirlwind as Taiglin Beryllium and Seraphina LeFluer arrived to take possession of the horses and make plans for our departure. Seraphina LeFluer didn’t waste much time with haggling sadly, the woman skipped the most enjoyable part of a bargaining session by offering a very handsome price that was hard to argue. Phildrin mad a half-hearted attempt but she shut him down with little effort. I was curious about the Elf that was responsible for the teleporting, the man is a walking poster of the Elven Archmage, and I asked about him. I was told that he was Taiglin Berylium, Jai’mi’s father. While talkin with Carol about him I learned that he is possibly the finest painter of his or the following generations so I got this idea to ask him to do a design for the necklace. Oddly he was much more approachable than I had imagined, and after explaining what I wanted and why, he seemed intrigued and willing to do the job….he even offered to do it for free! Far be it from me to argue over a price like that. Just before we left I took the drawing to the Jeweler’s shop, the woman there was awed by the design that I had brought her telling me that it would be quite the challenge for her husband.

Aedramir, September 1402

Upon our return to Aedramir we quickly learned that there was a plot within the Senate to have the Azure Guard stripped of their standing and power. The motivating force behind this was the new Cardinal, Johann Tetzel. Upon his appointment he had come to Aedramir with 4000 of the church troops, removed the Azure Guard from the command structure of the Crimson Guard and then worked with certain Senators to begin the process of disbanding the Azure Guard altogether. So Carol, Dumas and I decided to enter the City quietly and acquire a place to stay other than the Chapter House. Dumas and I went to our separate contacts to find lodging and, after we both found a place we decided to keep both places open.

After that, at Carol’s behest, I went to the Chapter House to make contact with the Guard that were still in the City to find out what was going on as we had heard that they were being followed and harassed. I took the route through the sewers and found one individual watching the way in. However he was not well placed and I easily moved past him. The Azure Guard stationed inside the door was a little surprised to see me but quickly welcomed me in. As I entered the main hall Serena ran and flung herself at me. I guess she was glad to see me, and if I’m honest with myself I was glad to see here as well. There was someone new in the hall as well….someone that looked very familiar to me but I couldn’t quite place it. She had been brought there by Slim on behalf of Tam. I listened as Serena explained that like many Guard, the staff had been harassed by either the Crimson Guard or other unknown individuals. Malric had been arrested by the Crimson Guard when he had reported to the Bastille and was still being held there. After hearing what she had to say I asked her about the new woman so she introduced me to her. Her name is Dulcinea Calabressi and she claimed to be an Azure Knight. She also claimed to be MUCH older than her appearance could lead anyone to believe. During the conversation that followed I learned that she had once been the vessel of Semiramus but she claimed to no longer be possessed by her. It was only then that I remembered why I recognized her. I had seen her years ago in my mother’s encampment on the eve of the Winter Solstice, only then my Mother had called her Semiramus, addressing her as her Goddess, for my mother is a leader of the Cult of Semiramus. I immediately got everyone out of the hall and sent Slim to Find Carol. In my haste I forgot that he and Dumas had gone to the new safe house and I sent slim to Duval’s house instead. It turned out to be a good thing as the person that got the message was the wizard Zee. He arrived via a teleport and the air fairly sang with imminent sorcery. Dulcinea was immediately frozen in some kind of amber colored glass and he stood at a loose guard saying n a low commanding voice “Come Forth”. After what seemed an eternity where we all held our breath nothing happened and Zee seemed to relax. Then without preamble he released the spell holding Dulcinea and stepped back. The conversation that followed was almost unheard by me, her appearance had dislodged old memories in my mind. I do remember hearing her claim that she had thrown off Semiramus’s hold on her and her family and that she was free of her influence…..but I can’t believe that. I remembered the terrible things she had done. This woman could be a plant to deceive and spy upon the Guard or even be here to destroy it from within. She could even be here to destroy Carol. I’ll have to keep an eye on her.

A city at last
Entry from Artemis Stronghammer

Teleporting is fun and very convenient for travel and I didn’t have to ride double with anyone to get to Aedramir. Ah haha. I would like to know more about traveling that way.

Now Aedramir it has changed some sense my few hour visit earlier this month. There seems to be more crimson fellows running around and no blue coats around at all. I decided the inquisitive manner at the west gate decreed me to go by the name Turk, Turkamon Dernière Attente, this will be my name in the city of Aedramir. It is my hope that this name will open many doors that would be shut to a person named Slim in this political world I’ve moved to. It is my hope that this will be our home for many years.

I believe Phildrin and I can have many interesting and possibly prosperous adventures. This conclusion has its merit based on our farce upon entering the city we made a ploy of me following him and him finding out and “stealing” my two horses at sword point so that they are stabled. He has made offers to help me and Sampson both make a few new friends within the city.

After our farce on the streets at the chapter house, I followed (in an unseen way) Phildrin to a low end tavern in the dock districts called Sailor’s Sprawl The-Witcher-3-Wild-Hunt-07-Skelling-Tavern.pngwhere we find Tam and Jazira. Some intel on the changes within the city were discussed and then Tam expressed a concern for his girlfriend Maelyn. Phildrin suggested I might be able to help get her out safely which I agreed to with the letter Y drawn in the dust on the table they were sitting at. I then proceed to develop a intricate plan for me to sneak her out of her place of work, but following the discussionTam ask me to follow him and he heads straight to Maelyn home so I can go get her now during the hot afternoon. He is too eager in his haste to save the damsel in distress that when I go in to get her I come out with an unknown lady that I later find out is not Maelyn. But she ask for our help to bring her to the chapter house so we do. It turns out she is claiming to be an Azure Knight Dulcinea Calabressi and wouldn’t you know she also claims to not be possessed by an evil demon that I later find out is the mother of all monsters. So far it appears to be the truth but I don’t want to be around when it is proven false it might mean my head or a life spent living as a DUNG BEETLE!! I CAN’T HANDLE THAT IT WOULD BE TERRORFING AND SMELLY.

Upon leaving the chapter house as a thief that was caught, beaten, and tossed out I was caught again by some fellas that work for this higher up crimson guy. And they want me to help put the guard in jail to leave only in a wooden box for coin.

The first night in Aedramir I spent by myself in a tavern my friends were scattered across the city I frankly don’t know where any of them are not my wife or Sampson or Carol or evenPhildrin, I do know where he will be at 11am tomorrow but that still leaves me on my own with only a map of the city on my mirror.

Well this is Turkamon Dernière Attente signing out September 1, 1402

"A Guard Under Seige"
Game 19 -- Saturday, June 13, 2015 at 2:30 pm

Players Present

PCs with Minor Involvement

NPCs with Major Involvement

NPCs with Minor Involvement

Enemies with Major Involvement

  • None

Enemies with Minor Involvement

In Game Dates

  • Game begins: August 28, 1402 Eponi Valley (a Hanging Valley on the Southeastern side of King’s Valley), Alysia
  • Game ends: September 1, 1402 in the city of Aedramir, Alysia

Important Locations

"A Home for a Few Strays and Some Cattle"
Game 18 -- Saturday, May 30, 2015 at 2:30 pm

Players Present

PCs with Minor Involvement

NPCs with Major Involvement

NPCs with Minor Involvement

  • Puck — the beaver Tam Sotto befriended

Enemies with Major Involvement

In Game Dates

Important Locations

Game 17 -- From the Missives of Sonja the Habomination
A History of the 3rd Age by Uriel the Bard -- Book 3 : Chapter 17

An excerpt from the Missives of Sonja the Habomination just before the War of the Three Kingdoms

Xander visited me a couple nights ago in my dream. Dam sneaky elves can’t even let me get a peaceful night’s sleep with them around some days. Starry_Night_Sky.jpgHe had heard about the Griffin riding incident and was wound up about it. I figured he was going to lecture me about letting Carol go up on one of those things but instead he decides to lecture me about MY not going up on one. What the hell did he expect?! I’ve got no business being on one of those creatures, I haven’t the training for it, and I told him as much. After a pointless argument I told him I would work on my riding skills so I could join Carol in the air if I needed to. He also wanted to know about Carol’s plans on joining the Azure Guard. I tried to skirt the question by giving him MY thoughts on the matter. I told him I thought the idea was stupid and he would be throwing away his future. I told him I believed Carol should not throw away his heritage and his chance of being King. I told him that I believed in the idea of the United Kingdom and what it meant to me. Xander seemed genuinely interested in what I was telling him and when I finished he lowered the boom on my head when he asked, “Sonya, would you be willing to fight for the right of Dwarves and Orcs to join the United Kingdom??? He turned my world upside down with that one question and I couldn’t give him an answer.

When I woke I had come to the conclusion I would have to work on my prejudices if I was going to earn a place in that Kingdom. Overgrown-forest-road.jpgIf I put my mind to it surely I could do that… but the thought turned my stomach and I could feel the anger boiling inside me.

The day the Dryad came to us and we worked out a truce with her, we began our journey to the mountain plateau where we hoped to find a new home for Marrathon’s people. Around midday Tam noticed we were being trailed by three travelers and Carol sent Jazira and Phildrin to investigate. Shortly after that Tam noticed there was a man in a wagon up ahead of us coming out way so Marrathon went out to see what was going on with him.

When Jazira and Phildrin returned they had none other than Artemis “Slim” Stronghammer, Samson Bale, and Simon du Monte in tow. I couldn’t concoct a single reason for them being here though. When asked all Slim would say was that he was here to deliver a message to Marrathon and he would only deliver it in person. So Carol told Jazira to go out and find Marrathon and see what was keeping him. When they returned Marrathon had the man and the wagon with him. It turned out the man had been traveling with his daughter to Aedramir to deliver some goods when a group of trolls had intercepted him and taken his daughter hostage. He said he would have to pay them when he returned. I could tell he wasn’t telling us the whole truth and I decided to take a look at the goods in his wagon. Well, well, WELL! The GOODS turned out to be jewelry of the Highest quality. I had seen this work in Aedramir, his work. This old man was the Master Craftsman that was making the majority of the quality jewelry sold in Aedramir. He was upset because it was supposed to be a secret. Well, that was just fine with me. I was willing to keep his secret as long as he was willing to work with me. First we needed to get his daughter back for him.

We all got together to talk about what to do but Slim interjected with his message. Petra had been sacked and Marrathon’s tribe, as well as Slim’s, Simon’s, and Sampson’s families (and many others) was without a home now. On a positive note Marrathon has become a father, a son and twin Albino daughters! From the look on Marathon’s face I would say that the twins were an unusual occurrence. We took a moment to celebrate with our friend and while we talked I began to think about our purpose here. Marrathon’s tribe was in need of a home and there was an urgency to our task now. We had to find a place for them. This made me wonder if I would ever find a place and I began to think of Carol and the United Kingdom again. If I wanted a place in that Kingdom I would have to earn my place… I would have to change. While I was thinking the conversation had changed to how to rescue the girl. My personal way of dealing with the situation was to kill them all and let the gods sort them out. That way of thinking had cause me and Carol problems in the past, it had in fact almost got Carol executed. So maybe it was time for me to try something new. I knew from experience the Trolls were just brigands, dangerous, but brigands no less. If they were Smart and if I could convince them their hunting grounds were going to become dangerous for them maybe I could get the girl released and I could get them to relocate. So I set about convincing Carol to let me try my plan. I could tell everyone thought this was crazy and Carol set up his plans for when everything went south.

An hour later I was at the Kings Bridge (pictured below before the Trolls repaired it). Bridge_at_Kingscrossing.JPGI walked to the foot of the bridge and called out to the two Trolls we knew were there. “I know there are two of you here and I wish to speak with your leader!” It took another half hour or so for him to show up. He didn’t show up alone either, he brought eight of his biggest men. I spoke with him for a few minutes and explain the situation. I let him know this area would shortly see an influx of people that would not tolerate them; and that they would be actively hunted and killed. I explained they would be better off moving their base somewhere else and I even suggested where they might move. He nodded and acted like he understood but he didn’t seem all that impressed. When it came to the girl he would not just turn her over so I had to negotiate for her release. It cost me but he accepted the deal. However, his offer and guarantee fell flat on my ears. He offered me safe passage there and her release. Note he did NOT offer safe passage away. There was every indication he would attack me as soon as he had turned her over to me. I chose to go along with his offer knowing what was coming. I thought that I might still be able to convince him to let us walk away. When we got to their cave his entire group was there including the Shaman that Jai’mi had warned us about. They brought the woman out and I knew that I was going to have to fight. Still, I tried one more time to convince him to do things my way. I told him about an experience of my own that closely resembled this one. I told him that if he tried to keep the girl and take me that the Azure Guard would wind up descending upon them. But as I finished he smiled and threw the woman at my feet. There would be no deal, he was confident he could take me and the woman. I tried a different path and it failed. I was not about to stand around and let him get the first blow so I stepped over the girl, and with a savage snarl I attacked him.

My first flurry of blows felled the leader and suddenly two large cows appeared on either side of me. Tam was on the job and protecting my flanks, and as much as I hate to admit it, he probably saved my life. He also was responsible for summoning the Dire Apes within the caves to finish off their leader that they managed to drag back inside. Arrows flew true from the forest and Trolls died before they could even take a step. As I had known my people were in place. The battle was short and bloody for the trolls. Their leader and the Shaman were killed and the other trolls did not die in the first moments of the fight either fled or were slain. Abba Yon had recovered the girl and got her to safety. For a change it was Carol that was terrified by my willingness to join battle without someone at my side. Maybe he will learn something from that… likely not, heh.

After we had secured the area we went into the caves to see if there were any more hostages. There were three there, A knight from Last Hold in Valiis, a Gnome from Thomso in West Frizia, and a female Half-Orc. I decided to question each of the prisoners starting with the knight. This was deliberate as I didn’t want to speak to the Half-Orc before I could get control of my personal feelings about what she was. When I got to her I took a moment to calm myself and I asked her how she had gotten here. She told me with defiance in her voice she had been looking for the Blood Moon Clan. I recognized the Clan as one of the groups that had attacked Willow Wood and I asked her if she had been a part of that. Once again, with defiance in her voice she says, “Yes, better that than to be a Lapdog of the Elves.” That was a direct accusation directed at me, it was evident in her eyes and posture. Something broke inside me and I could feel my breath coming tight through my teeth. How DARE she speak to me in such a manner? Before I could think I had my axe at her throat and with my furry in my voice I said “Say that again!” And she did. There was no thought, no debate, she had to die by my axe for such an affront. Just as I was about to strike her down Phildrin stepped between us and stopped me from committing this heinous act. I couldn’t speak, I could barely breath, so I turned from her and left the cave almost running over some of my friends as I left.

Marrathon found me a little while later and gently tried to get me to explain what was wrong but I couldn’t form the words, I couldn’t explain how I had come so close to murdering an unarmed, bound woman. I couldn’t admit to him what I had done. I also couldn’t face that I had just proved I could not be a part of the United Kingdom with this much hatred within me. I could not control it and given time I would do something I could not take back. I was afraid, like I’ve never been afraid before so I just walked away from him to brood on my own.

Later I walked into camp and I declared to the group that I would be taking the watch with Carol tonight. I needed to talk with him. I needed his help. I have never asked for help before.

I made a point to wait till everyone was asleep before I spoke to Carol. “Carol, I need your… Help, with something. It’s not much of a secret that I want you to become King… for you to bring back the United Kingdom. I have my own reasons for this and I admit my reasons are selfish, but it has been pointed out that everyone should have the opportunity to be a part of the Kingdom… no matter what Race they are. I was asked if I would fight for the right for Orcs and Dwarves to have a place in that Kingdom as well and I couldn’t answer… All I could do was think about how FURIOUS the thought made me. I realized I would not deserve a place in that Kingdom if I could not accept that fact, if I could not change. But I don’t know how to do that… I’ve hated them all my life, my hatred has kept me alive at times and forged me into what I am. I don’t know how to stop HATING them Carol, not after what they did to me. I need Help Carol. The thought of not having a place in that Kingdom… Frightens me, and it makes me Hate them more. I don’t know what to do.”

Carol tried to console me by trying to explain how he hated the Dwarves we faced that where tortured those people down in Vergina but he had never come close to killing an unarmed, bound woman before and I told him as much. We talked back and forth for a bit when suddenly Jazira was sitting beside me. I was embarrassed and angry and I tried to leave but then Wilhelmina and then Marrathon were all there… They all tried to console me and expressed they would help but all I could think about was how badly I had failed. Later Marrathon spoke with me again and told me he would help and expressed again that I could always have a home with his people. Maybe they are all right but right now it all feels like a terrible reminder of my mother and father. It reminds me that I’m not all that different from either one of them, and I don’t know how to deal with that.

"Good Troll Hunting" Comeing Soon to a theater near you
What good is Sneakin if you can't do anything with it?

Well today we are going for the trolls. We are riding at a pretty slow pace. Marathon is out scouting point and Tam is a bird again. The Forest is bucolic and quiet now that the Dryad has left us be. It kinda strange to think that I could be the source of so much anger in another being. How could she even suffer herself when driven by that much insanity? There is no joy being in that kind of place.

I can see from back here that Sonya is agitated again he is going on at Sir Carol. I can not hear him but I could guess it has something to do with Carol putting himself in harms way, it is kinda cute really, Sonya is like a hen who hatched a baby duck and the first time the duckling sees water heads straight for it leaving the hen on the bank in a panic. Sonya may one day learn that he can not stop a ducking from following it’s nature. Sir Carol is Knight and his nature is to charge in and leave his hen on the river bank.

Tam swooped in and squawked at Mina. I have to ride up bit don’t want to miss anything interesting. It is boring riding so slow when I know there is a fight to be had. YEAH, we are being trailed. Oh yeah Oh yeah I get to bash…….. Oh. No head bashing. Phil and I are going to sneak back and see who’s there, so… Oh yeah Oh Yeah. I get to do some sneakin. Anything is better that just plodding. I remember once when I was a kid and was very bored. Uncle Simi had been gone for long time and he had this cat…. Maybe I’ll leave that story for another time.

Only a mile or so back we could hear them. Three men riding. Wwellll… two were riding, one was just on horse back. Poor horse he look very put upon. WE could hear them with no problem, “They can’t be too far ahead those tracks are fresh”, They were Southern you could hear the drawl and they were making no effort be quiet, that is bad operations. “Oh. Okay. So who are you now, Marathon?” Marathon, these oafs know Marathon. Phildrin is on the other side of the road. I stand and point to the center of the road and then to myself. I’m not waiting for a response and leap to the center of the road, weapons drawn and with a flourish and Loud voice, “State your business.” With a little effort the two men in front settle their horses but the squirrely guy in back slipped off his animal and did a disappearing act. They introduced themselves as Samson Bale and Simon Du Monte with the shifty guy in the back calling himself only Slim. Not sure you can trust a guy with only one name, I think it means he has something to hide. Well ferretting out hidden info is one of our specialties, or it will be now.

I will bring them into to way point and let Sir Carol deal with them. They seam to know him and some of the others.

Sir Carol sent me out to find Marathon, I think he sensed that my good nature was beginning to wear thin That Samson Bale is going to be a problem. He does not know boundaries. So I mount up with grace, style and skill, leaving these new platoons for Carol, if he wants to rule a ship of fools he may have a good start there.

As I ride out I need to figure out what bothered me about that one fellow. I think on it tomorrow. Marathon was easy enough to find because he was leading a wagon. HUmgh. A wagon. “What did you find there Marathon?” I asked him. Marathon sees the world in pretty black and white terms. So it make perfect sense to him if you find a wagon you bring it home??? As he answered I then notice the oldman hunkered on the wagon.

" The trolls took his daughter for ransom" Marathon replied. “That’s awful, he hardly looks like he has much to offer for her. I suppose that we are going to use her rescue as the focus for some plan?” I joked. Marathon just looks at me and turns to continue back down the road. I can never really tell if he gets my jokes. " I have news for you." His reply is a simple “What’s that?” “Some old Friends of yours joined the party a bit ago” I pause dramatically but as usual Marathon is a sure spoiler on a good lead in because he too paused dramatically. “Well aren’t you going to ask me who it is?” And of course he did. “They are three men from the South, two humans named Simon du Monte and Samson Bale, and a slippery little Half Elf who calls himself Slim. What kind of person goes by only one name?” Before I finished my question Marathon had perked up and was setting a much faster pace. He didn’t quite leave me and the wagon behind but I think he would have if he thought it honorable.

Oh how I hate the cold wet soggy North. How does anything ever get dry here. Sir Carol and Sonya have me going back and forth across that twice cursed river, trooping around in the forest, like this is a good place for any self-respecting person to be hanging out, lost or no. There I said it out loud, time to get to work. I am supposed to find a secondary entrance to the Troll Cave but I will snookered if I could find the front entrance or even the cave itself. Oh thank goodness there is Tam I am a little embarrassed but I think I would rather be found by him than some of the others.

It is getting late….. stay tuned for continued thrill packed adventure in our next episode of “Good Troll Hunting”


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