Tuesday, November 10, 2015

(Hackmaster) Burning Trogs Rule! #18 - Smacked by Don

20th of DuoDec, 1134 - Linnard Harbor, Kingdom of Marakeikos.
After their clandestine meeting with Dame Silver to agree upon the terms to save her brother, The Trogs left in the pre-dawn light to stay in Linnard.  They met,  Yurgan Wolf, Captain of the Ewe. Only one other captain was available, and he refused to to any farther than half the distance of the Mer Kasp, so 200 gp per day was agreed upon.

Journal Note:  It will cost 6,000 gp for a potential 30-day voyage. ***NEED 6,000 gp REIMBURSED FROM DAME SILVER***

21st of DuoDec, 1134 - Linnard
They met up at the dock at dawn, the crew of the Ewe already loading up the extra rations the Trogs provided.  An exhausted Cup ran up to the ship.  His family's house on Windyvale was burned to the ground.  Cup feared everyone dead.

The group held the ship and dashed back up to Windyvale.  Dame Silver's Estate was burned to the ground.  The survivors could barely grip their weapons.  Most of the dead were burned beyond recognition.  Of the notables at the party, only the body of Black Kerri could be identified.  The few non-charred bodies had multiple sword and spear wounds.  Blue and Orange Fish tattoos were on some of their foreheads.

Gwen:  "We spent a lot of money and everyone is dead.  I hope Mitgan made it out alive."

As far as everyone knew, Dame Silver was dead.  Even with little chance at reward or reimbursement, the Trogs plodded on with their mission.

Captain Yurgen knew of the fish tattoo as  a symbol of  the Bloody Whip, one of the most evil organizations he knew of.  They were the worst of the pirates  Old men on the crew didn't even want to hear talk about it.  By dinner time, the Ewe was out of Linnard Harbor and on its way.

22nd of DuoDec - On the Mer Kasp
Captain Yurgen gave the Trogs a tour of the ship, including where the pumps were .  Storms are coming and everyone aboard needed to know how to operate and fix them.

Gwen: His food tastes better coming up than going down.  

With the weather looking worse, they headed north to Amatay, also known as Shelley Harbor, in Vlachia.  The ship docked in a desolate corner of the harbor, nicknamed "Banana Island"

Gwen: Place looks like crap.  Everyone here looks tough.  No cargo on ship, huge mass of people came to help but with no cargo they ran away.    

Crew and Trogs reached nearest bar, but the dwarf tossing competition was too violent and too bloody even for the crew.  They moved onto to the Cracked Flagon, where more civilized  blood sports were being conducted.

Trogs were waylayed in the bar.  Most of the lights in bar went out.  Cecelia smited a few, but was  knocked out with a blow to the back of head.  Gwen cast a  Flame Blade that made everyone step back.  She swung wildly to make more room and set part of the bar on fire.  The others grabbed Cecelia and dashed out the bar and back to the ship before the press gang arrives.

23rd of DuoDec
Cecelia was healed and the others recovered from nasty hangovers.  The day was bright and sunny and the only sea sickness came from the galley.

The night,   Brother Thomas caught little sprite creatures attacking, and barely managed to wake Gwen.  The sprites swarmed the Trogs and three water-logged undead blocked in the doorway.  Soon, the cabin went completely silent, and a few seconds later the druid and monk both passed out.

24th of DuoDec
The four Trogs awoke to all of them with iron muzzles around their heads, the men were naked, and the women wore nothing but raggedy shirts.  They all had oars chained in their hands.  It was quite apparent that they all had been captured and enslaved when the crack of the whip was heard behind them.

Gwen, from her recollection: It was hard and tiring.  We got food once or twice a day normally There were storms on occasions and we were forced to row faster or bail water to stay afloat.  This went on for many days.

32nd of DuoDec, 1134.
The slave ship came to a small port town.  Some of the slaves were given clothing and  forced to move cargo off the ship.  Cecelia made an innocent enough distraction and Marek had a chance to run off, but froze.  The others failed to follow out of fear of the unknown of this odd town.  There chance to escape gone, the Trogs trudged back onto the ship.

6th of TriDec, 1134
Gwen: We hit a storm the slavers were having some of us bail water.  The water continued to rise and the slaves still chained to the oars all drowned.  A few days we get no food or water.  Cecelia pleaded for her holy symbol to heal everyone, slave and slavere alike, to get the ship moving.  The crew always said no.

7th of TriDec, 1134 - Somewhere on the Mer Kasp
With the overwhelming smell of death already in the air, the Trogs finally decide to to take the ship. Brother Thomas managed to break free, and then freed the others.  The Trogs and their freed slave companions took the ship using sheer brute force. 

It was definitely far more exhausting and desperate than the painting shows.
The few survivors decided to try to nurse the ship closer to the shore. 

Gwen had other ideas.

She fashioned a raft with boards ropes and ropes.  She used her druidic powers to to summon a pod of dolphins to take them to the nearest port.  For a few days the Trogs survived by hanging on to the makeshift raft for dear life and the dolphins pulled them to civilization.  There only sustenence was raw fish the dolphins caught for them, which is the origin of the nautical saying, "Never look a gift dolphin in the mouth..."

Nautical Uber for Adventurers!
Although I don't remember any Aquaman-style riding of dolphins, this is the true beginning of Smackdown the Slavers, the Hackmaster version of A1-4, Scourge of the Slavelords.   As the more combat-heavy members of the party away at Frandor's Keep, it was time for the second-tier characters to shine... and suffer mightily.    Without their magical abilities, the mediocre stats of the characters prevented an earlier assault on the slave ship.    Unfortunately, their dolphin friends only know of one real port in this area with big ships....

Next: #19 - A Slaver's Life is NOT For Me!

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