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5E The Rhyot Break - Chapter One: Endless White

TallIan

Explorer
Rorik

Rorik handed out some of his won rations to the hungry escapees. When Gimlak introduced himself, Rorik paused for a second. THE Gimlak he wondered. He certainly seemed as savage as Gimlak's reputation, but Rorik kept his thoughts to himself for now.

"What do you have planned now? Rorik asked Bria. "If there are kobolds infesting these caves, they must have some supplies. It would set us in good stead achieving our own aims. Your companions certainly look like they could use some better clothes."

OOC: I've assumed Rorik and Welkin have shared their 20 rations among the 3 escapees, meaning everyone is carrying 3 rations now 20/5=4 and one rations eaten each.[\OOC]
 
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Steve Gorak

Explorer
Rorik

Rorik handed out some of his won rations to the hungry escapees. When Gorak introduced himself, Rorik paused for a second. THE Gorak he wondered. He certainly seemed as savage as Gorak's reputation, but Rorik kept his thoughts to himself for now.

"What do you have planned now? Rorik asked Bria. "If there are kobolds infesting these caves, they must have some supplies. It would set us in good stead achieving our own aims. Your companions certainly look like they could use some better clothes."

OOC: I've assumed Rorik and Welkin have shared their 20 rations among the 3 escapees, meaning everyone is carrying 3 rations now 20/5=4 and one rations eaten each.[\OOC]
OOC:

OOC: Hey [MENTION=6853819]TallIan[/MENTION]! Gorak is the second half of my username. My character's name is Gimlak (altough in retrospect, Gorak would have been way cooler ;-)
Cheers,
SG
 
Zemryn received her offering of food, barely masking her ravenous hunger as she tore away at a portion of it. Her stomach twinged, and then cramped sharply, but she did not let that stop her.

I make quite the sight, Atemi. Ill-fitting, poorly-made armor...stolen weapons, and fea-infested furs...but I know the sun will rise on me differently one day. One day soon, I think.

"I am for cleansing these dark halls of whatever foes we find. As Atemi guides, so she provides, and we are sure to find what we need as we go on. Victory will be the fire that heats our hearts even as it purges these passages."

She swallowed a last bite, wiping her mouth with the back of a grimy hand. Her pale eyes, circled in black, were wells of deep and faith-abiding resolve.
 

Imladir

Villager
Faelena's scowled only deepened at Welkin's smile. Something dark and violent passed in her eyes, but whatever it was she didn't act on it, and still kept silent. In fact, she went as far as refusing the rations he offered. She had eaten not long ago, more than she had eaten daily for the last ten years. She'd rather slit her throat than give him what he wanted.

Pressed to though, she did accept those offered by Rorik, even if a bit grudgingly. That might have had more to do with a logistic issue though: while she was still holding a boot, it was way insufficient to be carrying rations. And despite what she had told herself for a moment at Welkin's offer, she did eat one of them. To have less to carry, probably...

She didn't seem impressed by Zemryn's desire to cleanse halls though: as far as she was concerned, they had much more urgent to be doing that run after things that could very well kill them. She'd follow though: it wasn't like she had any chance alone after all.
 

97mg

Villager
Bria smiled and a little sparkle came to her eyes whilst food was so generously shared with her and her companions. It was good that they had found friendly folk here, and the group's stomachs at least would now be more comfortable. Slowly though as introductions were made, some of the optimism drifted off of her delicate face.

"The poor sods are likely known to me," she said to Welkin. "Some of my people made camp here, a place to store some of life's necessities whilst we well... set out to free the slaves of the crystal mines to the east. Some of my brothers and sisters remained here to guard the things we would need." Bria's eyes seemed to flick about for a moment.

Dolovia and her damned cooking... I bet... yes...

"Kobolds," she then said. "Just as I am for Gimlak, Faelana and Zemryn, I am now bound by a duty at your news... I must... look for them. And you are right, I see how you have noticed my friend's poor choice of garb, we need tools, supplies, warmth. Just as you have shared your sustenance with us, if you will come... we can share that which my kin were here to protect."

All would sense then, as Bria inhaled a deep breath, that this was very important to her, not just her missing members within the pass's depths, but also the things they carried... and had failed to protect.
 
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97mg

Villager
Interlude: Halfnail (Farolst Village - now known as Parhalst)

Fifty six and a half years ago...

Searing red heat always brought a smile to Halfnail's face, though few would know given the dense forestation of his beard. Well, most of beard. The bottom quarter of the footlong mass was missing, and from it one could still smell the sour aroma of singed hair. Sometimes accidents happened. Moreso as life went on, the benefits of experience and profession soon diluting with the physical repercussions of age.

The human fellow had spent his life dedicated to craftsmanship, particularly the working of metal. Ore was in abundance throughout a stretch of the northern hills, often used for the smithing of tools and fixings used by builders and the like. But Halfnail wasn't that kind of worker, though the early days had seen him shape nails, braces and bars, soon he'd found other... more interesting things to give life. Pieces of his art were scattered around Farolst and the neighboring villages. Things that would outlive him, but perhaps never be cherished more than the man who made them.

He was a friendly soul you see, warm of heart and welcoming to all. A man who rarely said "no", and always loved a chat. But not tonight. For the first time in years the workshop's door was locked.

"This, will be my finest," he said proudly to himself. It had to be, given the nature of the commission, a special order. It had been two months ago that a rider from the far west had brought tidings from beyond Pincer's Split, and a job as well.

"My master named you as the one, the one who must make this. I know not why, as we have our own workers of things metal, but it was demanded... and who am I to refuse the third arm?"

Beside him, Halfnail briefly glanced at the parchment the rider had brought to him. An illustration. Such a simple thing... yet so difficult to cast. The allowed tolerances brought out almost as much sweat upon his wrinkled brow, as the roaring furnace.

***​

By dawn one day in the spring of the year, it was done. A ring. But this wasn't to be a finger's jewellery, a shackle or mount for a wheel. Nor was it the frame for a window or a bangle for a lady's wrist, well not unless she was a giant with exquisite taste.

At a yard across, but a mere inch in thickness, it reflected every minute ray of light that dared caress the twists of its form. It was beautiful. But Halfnail would never know how truly stunning this piece would one day become...
 

JustinCase

the magical equivalent to the number zero
Welkin's smile falters a little as Faelena ignores his offering of food and instead takes that of Rorik. He stares at her for a moment longer, then takes his eyes off her and ignores the elf for the rest of the conversation.

The tiefling seems truly empathic as Bria remarks that she likely knew the people whose camp was assaulted.

"I am sorry," he says with feeling, moving forward a few inches as if wanting to give her a comforting hug, but almost immediately stops himself. "We have all lost people, it seems, although some have lost more than that."

He looks at Gimlak and Zemryn, still ignoring Faelena. "I cannot begin to imagine what you must've gone through. You are right, the wisest thing is to band together. Safety in numbers."

Returning his inquisitive gaze to Bria, Welkin asks hesitantly, "Are the supplies taken by the kobolds worth risking lives over? Is there no other way?"
 

TallIan

Explorer
Rorik

Placing a hand on his fiends shoulder Rorik says, "Welkin, our band was better equipped and we were still defeated. These parts are infested with Korrud and this lot looks like they'll freeze before they could even turn themselves in to those wretched dwarves. We came here seeking aid, perhaps we've found it where we hadn't thought to look. It's risky trying to get some supplies from an unfriendly source, true, but I think it is worth the risk."
 

JustinCase

the magical equivalent to the number zero
Welkin sighs.

”You’re right, of course,” he answers Rorik with a sad smile. ”I just don’t want to put anyone in danger unless absolutely necessary.”

He seems distracted for a moment, as if listening to something, then the tiefling continues, ”We might be able to sneak up on the kobolds. They won’t see us coming until it’s too late and they are all... missing their loot.”

Welkin shoots a guilty glance at Rorik for only an instance before turning to the others.

”Stealth is our best option. Anyone faced kobolds before?”
 

Steve Gorak

Explorer
OOC: Sorry, I didn't get the notification that there were new posts

"I have not battled agaist Kobolds, but I'm shure that if I hit them with my sword, they will bleed." Gimlak then looks at Bria and adds "I have lived more in the last day than I have in the last ten years. I will never be able to repay this debt, so the least I owe you is to help you find your people. Let us find these kobolds!"

Gimlack repacks the Korrund heads he made a show of, and awaits Brias input.
 

97mg

Villager
Young Bria smiled at Gimlak's confidence and commitment. Though strange at times and heavy-handed, the man was like he was said to be... a hero. Of course he would help. Faelena and Zemryn were remarkable too, each in their own colors of strength and perspective.

That night she'd approached the slave's quarters, the uncertainty, it felt so recent yet distant all at once. It could have been anyone in there, but like a blessing these enslaved souls still had it, the will to live and fight, memories of times before the invasion, a supply of strength and will that even Korrud persecution couldn't completely steal.

And now it seemed Rorik and Welkin would work with them. Two strangers, a common hatred and a hard underground world. This was good.

"The supplies, if unmolested, will work to ensure survival," she said. "For all of us. A way that we can reach safer grounds without fear, and time to prepare ourselves for whatever comes next."

She nodded to her new companions respectfully. "Thank you, for not only your food, but your desire to help in this. I must ask, though you can ignore my curiosity if you wish. What brought you to this place? There is a power here my people speak of... a protector and visionary encased in stone. Still others speak of wealth within the oldest of the passes walls, though of this I can claim to have never seen evidence."

"Kobolds, though ugly and violent have never been an issue in Parhalst. I think like us, they tend to keep to themselves I guess? We never expected them to be here, but it is starting to make sense. They too, are probably victim to the changes on these lands... the invasion turning them to places of safety... hopefully though not in great numbers."

That was probably wishful thinking, and she knew it. She looked to the barbarian and her female allies. "Are you ready? Anyone who wishes to wait here, find warmth and rest, I will not think any less of. This need not be your fight too... though I hope Welkin is right, and stealth is on our side."
 

JustinCase

the magical equivalent to the number zero
Welkin looks at Rorik for a moment, hesitantly.

"We... followed Master Edius here, in the hope of finding something to turn the tide against the Korrud. I'm not sure if it was ever more than grasping at straws, however; Edius did not share all the details of what it was or how he knew where to find it. All I know is we didn't find it before the ambush."

Then the look on the tiefling's face turns into determination, as he grabs the crystal from his necklace in one hand and a dagger in the other. "I'm ready," he says confidently, crouching slightly in order to move more quietly.

OOC:
eklwwekewwekktjwktjktjwktjek
Ha, that's a great first post if I ever saw one! Not interrupting anyone's thread or anything, either... :lol: /sarcasm
 
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TallIan

Explorer
Rorik

Rorik returned the look, "Indeed. As a knight Arcane, I was essentially a glorified bodyguard for the wizards." he said, not quite willing to open up entirely to these strangers just yet.

OOC: I'll share the diary soon enough, but I feel offering everything to some vagabonds you just met in a cave is a little too contrived. The exchange between Rorik and Welkin should be obvious enough I would think.
 

97mg

Villager
Bria nodded also, appreciative that all would see her fellow villagers found and their supplies secured. Well, that was the plan. How desperate, violent or open to negotiation these kobolds might be was anyone's guess. Bria wasn't holding her breath for a perfect ending though. Not from the way things sounded to be, in here.

"As this is duty and choice, then I will enter the passages first, I guess. If someone could keep the darkness lit a little as we proceed?"

She turned then, and headed in what could be assumed as a northerly direction, down a tunnel that might house two folks stood side to side, though the ceiling was a little low in parts.

[sblock="Map"]
Green dot is party location.
Blue dots are external entrances to cave system.
Dashed lines are unexplored.
Red line is closed section. [/sblock]

[sblock="Rolls"]Stealth = 10.[/sblock]

[sblock="Notes"]Coyote dice roller is down. I'm using the rolz.org dice room named "TRB" for now.[/sblock]
 

JustinCase

the magical equivalent to the number zero
"I don't need the light," Welkin says quietly, then offers the burning torch to Bria. The tiefling carefully moves towards where the door he and Rorik saw the kobold retreat to, is located, then motions for the others to come forward if there is no sign of hostile activity.

He looks back, eyebrows raised in a silent question, and with his dagger makes a motion as if turning a key in a lock. Then he looks at the others in turn, wordlessly asking if anyone is skilled in opening locked doors -- if indeed it is locked.

OOC: Edit: Forgot my stealth roll. In rolz.org: stealth Welkin d20+2 = 11 (9 + 2)
 
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TallIan

Explorer
Rorik

I agree that stealth is out best option but chainmail does not lend itself well to sneaking. I shall hold back, but be assured that I will come to your aid at the first sign of trouble." Rorik readies his sword to emphasise his point and waits for the lighter members of the team to take the point.
 

Steve Gorak

Explorer
Rorik

I agree that stealth is out best option but chainmail does not lend itself well to sneaking. I shall hold back, but be assured that I will come to your aid at the first sign of trouble." Rorik readies his sword to emphasise his point and waits for the lighter members of the team to take the point.
Gimlak grunts his approval at Rorik's honorable words. He then proceeds and stands next to Bria "You guide, and I will lead" he says laconically.

 

97mg

Villager
Bria took the torch into her hand with a nod of thanks to Welkin, and with the other drew a small dagger from beneath her furs. Light and warmth were both appreciated in a place such as this. How exactly, they would tackle the locked door was indeed a concern though. Somehow they'd have to make do. She whispered to the others, "I am far from an expert in such things, but before leaving for the Break one of our folk demonstrated the basics. At first, we were not sure what was to be faced at the mines, and how tight their securing of possessions might be. Simple shackles I have picked open before... but... well I guess it depends on what mechanism is to bar our way."

Zem and Fae had been rather quiet during these final moments before heading away from the subterranean "camp". Bria would wait and see, let them choose where in this unlikely exploration party they would find themselves as the group moved out. With Gimlak beside her, young Bria felt safe, and most surprisingly the barbarian was quiet and careful in their approach. Bria could hear her own breathing and beating heart, far louder than any sounds the motion of the folk hero made.

With Welkin and Rorik behind, northwards they went through the gaps and crevices of split black stone. A sharp turn to the west, and there it was, their obstacle. Crafted and hung by unknown hands, the door appeared to be formed of a large fragment of local rock. The hinges or mechanism by which it was affixed, was a mystery. Located on the other side no doubt.

Waving her torch across the surface, Bria found a hole in it, centered about a yard from the ground. The tip of her dagger was slowly inserted into it, and the young woman visibly grimaced as she wiggled, poked and investigated.

Click.


Ah ha! That was a good sign.

Click!

"Come on, come on..."

The satisfaction of further sounds did not continue.

"Damn, I almost had it," she muttered, looking to the others.
"Anyone else want to try?" she whispered, "Or perhaps we backtrack, and find some other way?"

OOC: Pick Lock = 14

 

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