Tuesday, October 27, 2015

(Hackmaster) Burning Trogs Rule! #16 Winner, Winner, Finding Linnard

With the departure of Zorin, Whitey, and Corena, the Burning Trogs consisted of:
Cecelia Darkspruce - Half-Elf  Fighter Cleric of Sif.  "Hero of Celsior!"
Gwendalyn Lorax - Half-elf Druid
Brother Thomas - Human Monk
Marek the Learned - Human Double Invoker
Janus Redrock - Gnome Titan Cleric of Pangrus

To recap from last episode:

4th of DuoDec, 1134 Celsior, Kingdom of Marakeikos
A Woman showed up in nearby bar looking for the Trogs. She was a courier for noblewoman Dame Silver of Linnard and presents Cecelia with a fancy envelopes. The Trogs apparently rescued her niece on one of their adventures, and she would like to return the favor with hospitality and invite them to her estate to celebrate the Feast of Erinborg.

Time to buy some fancy duds!

The woman's appearance cause a buzz amongst the townsfolk and the Burning Trogs' fame grew instantly.  Dame Silver was apparently a big deal amongst higher classes and her parties were some of the biggest and best social events of the kingdom.  Free (high quality) drinks flowed and discounts were given for some of the finer fashions available in Celsior.  A few fame-seekers tried to tag along with the group, or have the Trogs pitch ideas or innovations, but they were quickly shot down.

5th of DuoDec, 1134 Celsior.
Janus announced that she too decided to leave Trogs, and catch up with Zorin and crew heading up to Frandor's Keep.

Gwen:  "There are a lot of horny men at war..."  

That evening, Baron Desmond Celsior and his entourage made it down to the side street were the Trogs' headquarters was located and demanded audience with Cecelia.  In their desheviled common room, the Baron granted Cecelia Darkspruce the court noble title of Lady.  He was very friendly to the other Trogs, but drew the line when he was invited to tavern-hop for late-night celebrations.

6th of DuoDec, 1134 Celsior
The Trogs slowly made their way to Linnard, via Mirros.

8th of DuoDec, 1134
The weather warmed up and the snow began disappearing.

9th of DuoDec, 1134 - Mirros, Capital of Marakeikos
Arriving in the capital, everyone got baths. 

Gwen: Even Brother Thomas who didn't even need it!

Additional  fine Garments were purchased for the feast.

Still more caravans were prepping for an extremely early to head south.

10th of DuoDec, 1134, Mirros
While galavanting through town, they discovered that a second book about the center of the world had been published.  This author, a halfling named Balthazar, claimed Halflings rule the center of the world, lording over Humans and other races.  He also claimed that Galganooza, a city in Mercadia was rumored to have a tunnel to access this land.

Later, they met Elrigano Madavank, who claimed a band of possessed dwarves attacked him and his friend, as well as and burned down his manor.

In another night-time soiree, the Trogs encountered an "army" of two dozen angry dwarves, who claimed Madavank was a liar and a deceiver.  No sign of Madavank anywhere.

11th of DuoDec, 1134, Mirros
Embarked for Linnard... slowly.

12th of DuoDec, 1134, On the Road
As they travelled north on the trade route, the warm, dry air of the Mer Kasp made the snow-covered journeys earlier that year look like a distant memory. 

As the sun was setting in a beautiful display, they came upon a pond, but before they could see who had congregated around it, they heard a halfling scream, and a diminutive fellow come racing at them.

It was a huge humanoid horde getting water.  Four columns of goblins, nearly two hundred greenskins, seemed unimpressed and unworried of the pudgy demi-humans screams, as a scouting party of bugbears, dogs, and goblins had surrounded them. 

Marek got hurt pretty bad early on and hid under the wagon.  Three bugbears and three dogs on all four sides pressed the party, with a small detachment of goblins worked it's way up the hill.  Brother Thomas ran away, Cecelia tried and failed.

Gwen cast  Insect Swarm chased off the goblins coming to aid the bugbears, and an Entanglement held the bugbears until the others could do something about it.  Marek finally mustered some courage and cast some fire spells at the entanglements, setting everything afire!

Gwen cast Precipitation to thwart the spread of the fire, but Marek cast another series of small fireballs!   By this time, the surviving bugbears had fled, as did the the columns of goblins around the pond.  Four men in robes finally emerged from the nearby wood. 

Gwen:  They called us stupid and made us put out the fire.

Artwork snagged from https://nerdnight.wordpress.com/
The Druids of the Traldaran Northlands had spoken. 

Janus' departure was for a similar reason as Zorin's.  Scott, Janus' player, needed to take a few certification courses, and the only ones available interfered with the only other night the other players could make it.  Another gnome titan going off to war made complete sense.

This mess of a combat was the first time we saw Gwen in all her glory.  She certainly couldn't hit the broadside of a barn with any melee weapons, but she had dodged the level-draining undead in previous adventures and had the most potential to become a powerful character... even if she was a druid. 

Still, a flurry of low-level fire spells from Marek could negate her power, or make it far more dangerous than they should be:

Next:  #17 - The Feast of Dame Silver

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