[IC] Evilhalfling's Dark Sun

Evilhalfling

Adventurer
ds image.jpg



Prologue
The walls and floor sway and creak as the rolling fortress travels east in a cloud of dust. The lower hold area where you sit has 4 dozen slaves and half as many guards. The upper floors contain the caravan merchants, a few driver and additional supplies and goods. A pair of 16-ton Mellikots pull the great wagon, one of three in the caravan. Warriors on scaley 2-legged Cardocs surround the caravan. You were all told that the Merchant House Klethira was buying gladiators for a new school in Draj. All the slaves in the hold seem fit, mostly gladiators, although there are a few older slaves as well.

The small trading house just outside the city of Urik sent out another caravan the afternoon before you left with 1 of 4 of its Mellikot wagons, and many of the cheaper slaves. The first caravan did not seem to have as many guards as usual. The night after the first caravan left, your caravan was loaded, the entire fortress of the trading house was emptied out into this caravan, you helped load even beds and chests of papers into the massive wagons. Then this caravan left at night with only the larger full moon providing light. You also saw the Matriarch’s Inix, an oversized 20’ long lizard saddled with a fortified but posh battle platform... At meal times you have been given water, and more food than you expected. This isn’t just an ordinary journey this is the entire trading house abandoning its compound and fleeing.

The guards in the hold seem nervous several the peering out cracks in the back door. The 20 guards are standing or sitting around the loading door out the back of the wagon. There are probably a few gazing in your direction most of the time, But none of them are showing any interest in whispered conversations.

Your hands are all tied with hemp and connected to one braided strand of nearly unbreakable giant hair rope. You have enough slack to stand or sit.

An older house slave named Sysra says “We should tell stories to pass the time. What is your favorite memory?” As the slave next to him begins to tell of a great meal she once had, Sysra adds in a whisper:

“This road leads on to Raam. What have you heard of the cities, what lies on the way, or what we flee from?”

OOC: Feel free to use player knowledge, outside resources or just make up stuff. Really entertaining things may turn out to be true/important. You can also take part in the covering conversation – other slaves are involved in one or both discussions. Don’t worry about order just post when you can.
Just in Case - (not the palyer)
Rogue Gallery
 
Last edited:

Leatherhead

Possibly a Idiot.
"Raam?" The name perked Plool's ears. "That's home of the Yellow Monastery, where Cerk learned how to fight."

"Or so he said."
Plool corrects himself, and looks off into the distance. "Maybe someone knows where he is now..."

"Anyway."
Plool composes himself as he remembers his situation. "Don't know how much is true, but others have agreed it's one of the worst cities. Warlords carve up it's streets like they carve each other's faces, and their 'Queen' would rather indulge her base instincts than run the place. Heh, the Natural Arena just might be the safest place in the entire city for us. At least the other gladiators will wait their turn to try and kill you. Whatever the House is running from must be bad, if we are going into that mess."

After a moment he adds "I hope the locals still make that sweet honey ale, I could use a drink."
 

Evilhalfling

Adventurer
Graarrk, a dwarf who like you is just starting his career as a gladiator looks at his feet and whispers

“um south of the road is the Dragon’s Bowl. It... um has like really high cliffs all around, They uh, say there is fresh water down there, but the druids punish anyone who um.. tries to build stuff. My Dad said ..uh he knew a gladiator who got a tail from there… it was like a creature that um... was living on him, but that he could swing around and hit stuff with it. When he died it tried to crawl away, but got stepped on."

Another Gladiator starts loudly boasting about his first kill in the arena. Apparently he jumped all the way over his opponent, snatched up a fallen sword and killed the guy from behind.
 

JustinCase

the magical equivalent to the number zero
Blaze remains quiet, shaking his head softly. The charcoal-colored genasi sits lazily on the ground, listening to the stories and boasts of those he considers too weak to face their current situation.

The warrior has been a slave for as long as he can remember, and moving around is something that he has grown used to over the years. True, the last time was actually some time ago, and Blaze has been with the same owner for over a year until a few days ago, but as a genasi gladiator he knows he is in high demand.

Too bad the transfer means moving away, so the plain looking noblewoman who occassionally bought time with him, will no longer visit. Blaze quite liked her visits.

Looking to distract himself, he opens a fist and watches a small flame erupt from his palm. Waving his other hand through it, Blaze plays with the fire for a few moments before abruptly closing his hand and snuffing out the flame.

He sighs, and seems about to speak before changing his mind. Instead, he listens to the stories.
 

tglassy

Adventurer
Cal sat, holding his pack to his chest. His spell book was in there. True, no-one could read it. Even if they could read, they'd just see badly misspelled, and badly written, poetry. He was good with the animals, so his master always let him have his one strange indulgence. From the way he'd grown up, it wasn't surprising he could read and write somewhat.

But he wasn't a prospective Bard. He was a young Wizard, and those badly written poems were actually Cyphers on how to cast his spells. He was paranoid that anyone would find them. He'd recently learned how to do an illusion so a paper appeared to say one thing, when he could read something different, but it didn't last long. Only ten days or so. After that, all the ink would fade. Cal's keen mind allowed him to remember everything in his book for a month or so, but it would get expensive, trying to recopy all the spells in his book every ten days. Maybe one day...

He mostly ignored the others. He didn't want them paying much attention to him. The less they noticed him, the less likely they would notice his spellbook. Even if his masters let him have it, if any of the commoners found it, though wouldn't know it was badly spelled poetry. They'd think it was a spell book. And so he had to stay hidden.
 

Salthorae

Imperial Mountain Dew Taster
Dukkoti strained against his bonds but stilled when a breeze crossed his face. The wind seemed to calm him and he was able to pause and look around at the fellow slaves. The elf had proved himself restless in the short time he'd been a captured slave. He hadn't had any fights yet and he didn't look like much of a fighter really. He'd proved capable with a spear, and better with lighter arms, but he showed little interest in any of the forced training done and followed the motions when forced.

His head snapped quickly in Blaze's direction when the flicker of flame started in the hands of someone on the far side of the carriage. He whispered a few words that came only to Blaze's ear. "Use your fire to free your hands. Come over to me and free me. Once we're in open sand I can keep us alive. We can escape."

Dukkoti's eyes are locked on Blaze waiting for the other man's reactions.

OOC: used the message cantrip, only Blaze can hear my words.
 
Last edited:

FitzTheRuke

Adventurer
The 'kreen gladiator twitched his antennae, listening, but he stayed quiet. He was a very capable gladiator, but he was humble and tended to down-play the spectacle rather than rise to it. He had been beaten many times for this failure. There was nothing he wanted more than to be free, but he was not quick to join others in an escape attempt, unless he thought it was likely to succeed. For now, he waited, keenly keeping track of every guard, slave, and civilian in his mind's eye.
 

JustinCase

the magical equivalent to the number zero
A whisper reaches Blaze, through the boastful stories around him.

Use your fire to free your hands. Come over to me and free me. Once we’re in open sand I can keep us alive. We can escape, the whispers says.

The genasi abruptly looks around, searching for the source of the whisper, looking at faces new and slightly familiar, until —

There. The elf.

Blaze smiles coldly, then shakes his head slowly. Attempts to escape fail every time; the guards are simply too many and the other slaves too make.

He does stand up, yawns somewhat theatrically, and moves across the hold seemingly at random, meandering between the strands of rope until he finds a spot as close to elf as possible to sit.

Without taking his eyes off whoever is telling their story, Blaze mutters under his breath, ”So many eyes. So many chains.”
 

Evilhalfling

Adventurer
After a few moments of tension and anticipation, heads are shaken all around and eventually, everyone relaxes again. The guards still do not seem to have noticed. The conversations resume:

A human slave you don’t have a name for says in a scratchy voice” I know this road crosses a poisoned river. The Dragon did something to the river spirit and this river has been sick ever since. I heard there’s a ruined city upstream that used to depend on it."

Another whisper –hard to tell who it was from – “rumor says there is a gang called the Cerulians – ex-slaves living in Raam”

Many of the other slaves keep their own council and the conversations begin to die away leaving some of you pondering where you would go if you did escape.
 

Leatherhead

Possibly a Idiot.
Plool recalls how Graarrk mistook him for a child when they first met. A faux pas likely attributed to the dwarf having his head bashed once too many times. The mistake was violently sorted out by adding another bash to that list before the guards broke them apart. Still, among the newer slaves, Graarrk is the one who most often lends an ear to Plool, probably because the others are still worried that Plool will bite theirs off.

"Sounds like a nice place. Druids aren't so bad, I've met one or two of them. As long as you don't go around trying to defile the lands with tool or magic they can be reasonable enough." Plool smirks at Graarrk. "And my own tail would be a nice trophy to show off back home"
 

Evilhalfling

Adventurer
Chapter 1
As the hot afternoon begins, your wagon lurches to a halt –

“On your feet Maggots! Time for a little exercise!” the guard captain, a heavyset, scarred Mul threads the giant hair rope out of the wall and pushed at by guards, you are brought out of the Wagon to walk along on the road. There are a lot of Crodlu riders and other guards surrounding the three great rolling wagons. You notice a troop of walking guards headed into the wagon. Looks like they get to rest while you walk. The Wagon just ahead of you is only a single massive flatbed, with hides stretching across it, pulled by a single Mellikot.

The caravan ahead of you keeps going and the slave master cracks his whip until you catch up. You are separated into two lines of over twenty slaves each, still bound to the giant hair rope, Held by a guard. All of you are near the front on the same rope line. A half dozen Crodlu riders keep pace with the lines of slaves, and you can see archers watching you from the upper levels of the Wagon you just left.

There is a lot of shouting, but the whips are mainly used for show rather than beating.

You march for several hours in the sun, some of you watch carefully for a chance to escape but the odds seem poor. As the sun drops toward the horizon, you can see a cloud of dust approaching on the road behind the caravan. Looking ahead you can see an almost dry river bed, winding off to the north. The river has no vegetation along its banks.

Then there is FIRE.

The front of the caravan his hit by a massive fiery explosion. You here yells and the screams of animals. Lean figures with black cloaks and bows or spears seem to rise up out of the nearby sands.

The Mul Guard captain eyes the approaching raiders and turns his attention quickly back to you slaves.

“The people attacking this house want no one to survive! Any of you maggots who fight to defend us and triumphs will be promoted to guards! Weapons are waiting for you at the Wagon!”

The guard captain unties the giant hair rope from his mount and casts it to the ground. He turns and rides toward the Wagon, yelling orders at the guards. You can slide your hemp ropes off the end, but are still bound.

OOC: the cloaked figures approaching are barely within arrow range. Go ahead and post 2 rounds of actions. An initiative roll, and any skill/attack rolls you make Post your actions whenever it's handy for you, they will happen in initiative order.
 

JustinCase

the magical equivalent to the number zero
Blaze enjoys the walk in the sun; not so much the walking but the familiar warmth of the burning sun on his skin. There is a simple joy in doing nothing but placing one foot in front of the other while his inner fire is fueled by the sun in the sky.

But then the caravan is attacked, and Blaze hesitates for just a moment. He stands, like most of the other slaves, unsure what to do, until the guard captain calls out for a helping hand.

"Thought you'd never ask," he grins, then looks at the elf who talked of escape before. The fire in his eyes speaks of opportunity, and with a motion of his head the genasi invites him to come along.

Blaze slides his bindings off of the giant hair rope and makes for the Wagon to fetch a weapon -- preferably something solid to smash skulls in with, and perhaps a shield to avoid being hit by arrows or thrown spears. Then he allows the flames of his elemental heritage to erupt from his skin, creating bright hairlike flames on his head and smaller one across his body.

Being covered thus, Blaze focuses some of the fire into one hand and burns away his bindings, hoping that with all the fighting and fire the guards won't notice for a while.

OOC: Round 1: I imagine moving to the Wagon and grabbing stuff is enough for this round; if I can do more, please let me know. Is it possible to get a warhammer of sorts, and a shield?

Round 2: Produce Flame cantrip (racial), then attack my bindings. I hope that's possible, because the spell description only mentions a ranged attack, doing 1d8 fire damage. I suppose that's sufficient to burn away the bindings?

After that, Blaze is ready to release Dukkoti and anyone else in the same manner.

Edit: Forgot my initiative roll. initiative Blaze: 1D20+2 = [2]+2 = 4
 
Last edited:

Leatherhead

Possibly a Idiot.
Plool couldn't help but bare his teeth. The gesture part smile, and part primal intent to attack. An opportunity for freedom had landed in his lap, and all he had to do is take his frustrations out on these raiders who had so graciously presented themselves. A quick glance at the distance. He could easily close the gap with a full tilt charge right now, but that would leave him horribly exposed and a priority target for the raider's next volley. Better to grab a weapon and circle around for the flank. Just like hunting back home.


“Out of my way, I ain't going to die standing around here!” Plool barks as he wrests himself free of the giant hair rope. Over his shoulder, he shouts “Graarrk, come get a weapon!” Twisting, pushing, and even ducking between legs, past any other slave who might still be standing around with doubt, as he runs into the wagon.


Inside he presents his hemp bindings and pleads with a guard “I'll cut down those raiders, if you cut me free!” One chop later and Plool picks up a spear. Jumping out of the wagon, he quickly decides to circle left. Using the chaos of the battle, the bodies and debris of the unlucky, and his short stature to help mask his movements towards the raiders.


OOC:
Initiative: 1d20+3=11

Round 1: Going to the wagon like many others no doubt. Plool is able to cover a bit more ground than most, which might be just enough get ahead. Hopefully Graarrk doesn't need too much to be spurred into battle.

Round 2: Ideally, the Guard Captain filled the Wagon Guards in on the situation, and they are willing to cooperate. If not, I will rework it.

Stealth Check: 1d20+5=14

 
Varsk had spent most of the trip keeping to himself. As one of the house slaves he was afforded more freedoms than most and he had heard of resentments that could flare during these trips. Not wanting to be assaulted he kept his head down and just listened. He continued to do this until the explosion rocked the front wagon.

Once freed from the giant hair rope Varsk runs for the wagon with the weapons. Jumping up on the wagon Varsk grabs a dagger and attempts to slice the hemp rope that bounds his hands. Varsk curses as he fumbles and drops the dagger. Varsk curses and fumbles for the blade and attempts to free his hands again. This time he does not drop the weapon but is still unable to slice through the ropes.

The half-elf curses at his luck and grabs several more daggers and a pair of singing sticks. He looks down at his slave robes understanding that he was not wearing armor and standing in the open. Varsk drops into the shadows and moves into cover continueing to saw at the ropes to free his hands.

OOC: Initiative: 1d20+3 13

Round 1: Running to the wagon with the weapons. Grabbing a dagger adn attempting to cut the bonds.
Cutting the bonds (Dex Check): 1d20+3 6

Round 2: Attempt 2 to free himself. Cutting the bonds part 2 (Dex Check): 1d20+3 9. Using Cunning action to hide Stealth check to hide: 1d20+7 27.
 

Salthorae

Imperial Mountain Dew Taster
As soon as the chaos erupted, and even before the guard captain said his piece, Dukkoti's eyes found the flame genasi, so he was ready with a nod when the man motioned him along. "Don't trust his words that we'll become guards. We should be ready to melt into the sands regardless of the outcome here."

He grabbed the first sword he could as they reached the wagon. As the genasi burned away Dukkoti's ropes and the bindings fell to the ground, he uttered a phrase that sounded light and lilting, but not like any common language found in the cities, "ᚠᛋᚱᛤᚹᛟ ᚩᚻ ᚻᚦᚱᚫᛋ"

Then he grabbed at whatever ranged weapon he could get his hands on and turned to fire on the approaching enemies.

OOC:
Initiative: 22

Round 1 - Running to the wagon with the others, grabbing a short or longsword
Round 2 - casting shield of faith as a bonus action, for +2 to AC so I'm up to 15 right now. Grab a ranged weapon of whatever they have and turn to fire on the enemy
 

tglassy

Adventurer
Cal moved quickly, hiding himself by the wagon long enough to cast a quick spell to harden his clothing.

Then he grabbed a crossbow. He didn’t dare use more magic at the time.

(Turn 1: Cast Mage Armor.
Turn 2: Get Crossbow, or daggers if there is none.)
 

FitzTheRuke

Adventurer
Chtckh'Chtckh rushed toward the wagon, showing why as a gladiator he was billed "the Speed Demon". He rummaged through the equipment for a bow, arrows, a net, and/or swords, if he could find them. When Blaze arrived, he gratefully accepted help with his bindings by waving his antennae and letting out a friendly scent while clattering his mandibles. Then, he was off, zipping across the dusty ground to find a spot from which to best to lay down some arrow-fire.

OOC: He'll use his Expeditious Retreat Psionic power right away, which makes him dash (and casts) as bonus action. He'll dash as much as he needs to to get to a place either overlooking things, or that has cover, or both, that's within range of the targets. Depending on how long getting the bindings off takes, and whether or not he took some, or all, of those weapons - feel free to decide what's best, If he has time, he'll fire off a quick shot: Bow: 1D20+7 = [5]+7 = 12 for 1D8+3 = [8]+3 = 11
 

Evilhalfling

Adventurer
Round 3:
The Wagon of weapons proves somewhat disappointing. They were apparently carrying a big pile of cheap weapons – while there are no bows, there are slings. Clubs, and spears, there are a few obsidian daggers but they go fast as a lot of the slaves scrabble for them.

One of the guards unloading the weapons cut the bonds both Plool and Varsk.
Varsk finds only a single obsidian dagger, but the singing sticks were no one else’s first choice. He grabs up one but catches sight of a second, (or he could load up further on knives) Varsk doesn’t have time to move anywhere else after all his searching for weapons, but takes cover behind the lip of the wagon, from his perch on top of it.

Chtckh’Chtckh and Dukkoti both find bone swords. Other slaves stop a moment to cut away bindings, Blaze and Chtckh are late to the Wagon, but Chtckht finds a good position behind a boulder (near the rear of Caravan) but doesn’t have time to take a shot. Plool is racing towards the same boulder, but can’t reach it. Instead he throws himself down behind scrubby cactus. Its temporary protection, but another move will bring him to the Thri-Kreen’s boulder.

While the Caravan organizes its defenses, as second fireball plows into the first Wagon, then a third fireball strikes off to the Southside of the caravan. This brings with it the death cry of the Matriarch’s huge Inix Lizard.

The elven raiders seem don’t seem that numerous but before the resting guards can get out of the Wagon, the door and entry part of the wagon are incased in sticky webs. The Croudlu Calvary are forming up a loose formation well behind the last Melilot wagon. (perception check to spot the wizard or sorc responsible for webs: DC 10)

The Archers among the raiders concentrate fire on the exposed guards, and those slaves that have not sought cover. Blaze and Dukkoti are by chance sheltered by the weapons wagon.
About 30 slaves run immediately to grab weapons, cutting each other’s bonds. Then the arrows begin to fall 10 of the slaves are killed in the initial volley, along with 3 guards. Half the elves rush in amongst the caravan, two of them team up on the helpful guard at the weapons wagon, cutting him at hamstring, chest and finally throat. They are very close to Blaze, Varsk, Cal and possibly Dukkoti.
Another raider is close to Plool, but hasn’t seen him yet.

NPCs
The slaves are mostly fighting one and one with the raiders, while the guards are double-teamed.
Graarrk has grabbed up a bone axe, and is trying to hold off a raider. He is already wounded.
Old Sysra was trying to hide but around him arrows seem to rebound without touching him he has a look of panic on his face as with a set of magical gestures his own bonds are dissolved by acid.
The Mul Captain has a Cahulak – a weapon that looks like a pair of obsidian grappling hooks connected by a 15’ rope. He leaps off his wounded mount and snags a raider with one end, yanks him close and smashes the other end through his skull. Three raiders circle him warily as an elf wielding an iron sword arrives.
The archers on the wagon return fire at the elves, they are well protected but outnumbered.
6 caravan guards, 20 armed slaves and the PCs are in the immediate area. It is hard to see what's going on around the leading wagon, it's at least 80' away and blocking a lot of the view.

OOC said:
produce flame can still be held in the hand for light or melee effects and it easily burns away the ropes.
Due to his initiative, Dukkoti effectively gets 2 turns this time, one before the raiders charged into the caravan and one after.

initiative: this is the order actions will be resolved in, but don't wait to post. I rolled for those who forgot.
Varsk 13
Cal 12
Plool 11
Chtckh 5
Blaze 4
Round 4:
Dukkoti 22
Raiders 20
Traders&slaves 16
How do you do that off-color block for OOC ?
 
Last edited:

Advertisement

Top