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Hackmaster episode 44

Page history last edited by PBworks 14 years, 10 months ago

With the party members bloody and battered we discuss a tactical withdrawal to allow healing and armour repair. While we do this the suddenly psycho almost dead Aseravb decides on a whim to do his first ever solo dungeoneering exploration. Thankfully he regains his senses on discovering a closed door and returns to the fold.

There’s a frightening desire among some of the more heroic foolhardy members to continue battling until death or victory. Luckily, as the chance of death heavily outweighs the chance of victory, this is quashed.

 

We make our way back to the entrance to the Temple, giving GG precise instructions that he should turn invisible and keep an eye on the battlements, signalling when the coast is clear which, strangely enough, he seems to accept. We never find out if that was a real acceptance though for, on opening the door, he spies five bugbears roasting a spitted dwarf over an open fire below him.

 

The plucky little Pixie Faerie summons three Phantom Faeries in an effort to draw the bugbears away. It doesn’t work. The bugbears pause in their wrestling and cooking to swipe the cavorting Faeries from the air and don’t seem to be perturbed that they vanish on being struck, we take courage from their obvious idiocy but still reckon they’re a little too tough to take on as we are now and in crossbow range of the battlements above.

 

So, after carefully weighing the options we decide, once more to enter the bowels of the Temple and sleep above the almost skeleton battle room. Where we sleep soundly despite the oozing and wriggling dismembered bodies below us. We wake in the morning for a light breakfast and plenty of healing. Which most party members don’t seem very grateful for.

 

Feeling a little better, though still slowed by Big Ear’s gaping thigh wound we continue on our way. Sneaking as well as we can with the rasping of shattered bone fragments grating together.

 

On reaching Aseravb’s door we ask Noddy to check it for traps etc. Which he does before - once again - staring blankly at the wall. On the other side is a room without a floor, which has collapsed into a rubble filled space stretching blacky below us. Across the room stretches a precariously balanced beam, though it does seem that you might be able to shimmy around the remnants of the floor beams.

 

GG, irritating as ever, takes delight in proving that he has no problems flying across and around and down (till he gets a little freaked out by the dark and returns). There is much discussion about how to get across. Hero Tops stares blankly at a wall and refuses to move, though it would seem sensible to get our only functioning fighter other than the Pixie Fairie to hold the beach while the others move up. Noddy also takes no part in this discussion. Finally Asearvb, a curious choice for the Marine’s, shimmies across, the beam bending sickeningly beneath him. Big Ear’s crawls after, having removed his armour and bag and persuaded the annoyingly formal GG to carry his equipment over.

 

The corridor stretches ahead, pretty dull really, ‘cept for 3 barrels filled with what seems to be aged and vinegary wine. Hero tops explores the depths and finds a flask filled with a greenish liquid, which makes GG feel “perky”. Yay, a Potion of Perkiness! What it was doing in a barrel of wine is a mystery completely ignored.

 

At that point, the scrawny little SpellSlinger shoves his way through a wall. This impresses the brawny fighter types among us no end, but he seems to take it in his stride. It reveals a huge ruined and collapsed space, still roofed but rubble filled. We can’t even tell if it was originally one space or many.

 

After some hesitation and a growing feeling of Agoraphobia amongst the crippled in the group we return to the corridors, which feel safer, but probably aren’t.

 

A little later we discover stables. This interesting sign, the first of current living occupation and use, may have been commented on, but Big Ear’s was enjoying a bit of the old pipeweed and blissed out.

 

Aseravb pokes some old rags, working on the safe assumption that they probably weren’t old rags. His theory is proven correct when a gross slimy tendril creature thing slaps him with a gross sticky slimy tendril thing. GG and Aserravb swing into combat, daggers and magic missiles slashing into it. Big Ears’ jars his leg badly and is slightly put off by the grating and bone fragments sticking out of his thigh. Noddy and HT stare blankly at a wall.

 

A little later GG gives it what can only, grudgingly, be described as a stupendous blow and Aseravb magic missiles the thing into oblivion. Then checks it for loot and find a whole lot of slimy crap.

 

The stables are otherwise empty, apart from a few horses. A ladder leads to a hole in the roof which GG instantly flies through, finding himself in pitch blackness.

“Hey, who’s there?”

“Who are you?”

“Marcus, what’s your name?”

“Don’t take that tone with me, stable boy!”

“Wha…? But…”

“I’m way above your station, laddie, and unless you want to spend your days rowing in my galley you’ll quiten down and respect your betters.”

 

Once again proving that a high charisma is no guarantee of pleasantness, GG reemerges, followed by another GG, and they begin to argue amongst themselves and tell the rest of us stories that only GG would know. Then, both being GG, they begin to fight. The rest are tempted to attack the one who drew last, as this is pretty good evidence that it isn’t the real one. One is immediately disarmed and then viciously slashed, fluttering from the air like a sycamore seed. The rest of us are sorely tempted to whack the one who seems to be winning, on the off chance that it isn’t our, um, comrade. But before we can, the injured one ups and flees, while the victorious one stabs him in the back. That’s our GG.

 

Again finding himself in the pitchblack hayloft, GG hits on an idea of unadulterated brilliance. He reemerges, grabs a lit torch and proceeds to burn the place down. Pausing only to kill a bugbear trying to escape the rapidly growing blaze.

 

Aseravb frees the horses while the rest of us argue, again, about the best means of escape and just how much of a moron GG is. This is cut short by the collapse of the roof, which cuts GG, Aseravb and Big Ear’s off from Noddy and Hero Tops. The last that is seen of them is the two placidly staring at the burning wall.

 

The three of us, well, Big Ears, actually, manage to open the stable doors by turning a surprisingly weighty and difficult winch mechanism. It takes some time so we burn a bit. Aseravb’s backpack catches fire, which freaks him right out on account of his last remaining spellbook, so he dunks it in a trough. Hope that ink doesn’t run… Eventually we flee across a small drawbridge with great bravery and all possible haste (not much for Big Ears, though GG manages an awesome turn of speed in his escape, showing a gratifying bond with the others) back to town, distracted only by the soft plunk of a crossbow bolt burying itself in Aseravb’s back.

 

We return to the Inn, Big Ears visiting the Temple of Odin on the way to inquire as to the availability of healing for greiviously injured members of the brotherhood. They demand six hundred GP, up front, and Big Ears, without audible complaint, grates back out of the Temple.

 

As we enter the Inn one by one we recognise a group of gnomes who sit idly drinking. This causes some consternation and Aseravb and GG disappear to buy disguises, Aseravb fails, but GG discovers a pint sized beret and a joke goatee, a kind some locals have taken to sticking on their babies for family portraits. Strange customs done here. Then Noddy and HT wander in. Noddy glances at the gnomes, the gnomes glance at Noddy, Noddy looks at the gnomes, the gnomes look at Noddy, Noddy’s eyes widen, the gnomes‘ eyes widen. Noddy flees, the gnomes in hot pursuit, (http://tv.cream.org/specialassignments/themes/bennyhill.mp3) while the rest of us relax with a drink and reminisce. It proves difficult, but not impossible, to persuade Hero Tops to go upstairs and fetch Leadbelly, on account of the shattered femur making it tricky for Big Ears to climb stairs.

 

On buying him a drink and getting him to value the gems we snatched, we come to the slightly scary realisation that Noddy has them. Hero Tops raises himself to go in search of the loot and attached dungeon artiste and is surprisingly successful, as Noddy has hidden behind a barrel outside the Inn.

 

The two desperadoes go in search of another Inn to stay in and come across Ye Ol’ Fellgoods. Whatever the hell a fellgood is and we decamp there, whereupon we discover that the 2 topaz’s, diamond, black pearl, garnet and azarite are all, amazingly worth 500 GP each. Splitting them 5 ways, with one remaining for party treasure we wander off to go shoppog and healing With some disputes as to whether Big Ears should get any party funding for his broken leg. Goddamn ingrates.

 

Alas Big Ears’ leg seems to have left him with a permanent limp, though he is still hopefukl that that might come right, given time.

 

GG drinks and rights poetry. He isn’t very good at it.

 

HT strikes up a conversation with the local manacle merchant, discovering that Highport, a way to the south is the centre of the Slvae trade and this is merely a staging point. Funnily enough, he doesn’t give any party secrets away.

 

The next morning we awake refreshed and discuss the gnomes interest in Noddy. Which is when Hero Tops admits that he never trusted Noddy and thinks his schemes are harebrained and never work. The truth hurts and Noddy stares vacantly at the wall as this sinks in.

 

Following that we discover that the latest party scheme (Hero Tops’, from memory) of leaving here and heading to Highport is harebrained and would never work, as the barkeep informs us that “yes, it is the centre of the slavetrade, but it is also the capital of the Southern Orc League”.

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