Sundered Lands 28

The Sundered Lands of Palladium

Session 28
September 12 - October 4, 2016

Tunnel Fighting

Saturday October 28th

The Smoke Clears

An explosion has rocked the underground lair of the Sea Harpies, presumably engineered by their own hand. The smoke and dust begins to settle as several member of the party work their way down the corridor, engaging stunned Sea Harpies along the way. Seeker, who had been in the room when the barrels exploded sees nothing of the entrance they came in through. It is now nothing more than a pile of brick and earth. Silver and Sings to Moon, who had still been out in the hallway when the barrels exploded, are nowhere to be seen. The last he had seen of Silver, she had just poked her head into the chamber, directly between the two burning stacks. She had used her fiery breath to negate the patch of tripping tendrils on the floor, then BOOM! Everything exploded!

Seeker, seeing some standing Harpies menacing Valinya further down the hall, steps up to take aim with his throwing axe, but accidentally steps into the range of another tendril patch. Quickly, they purple-black tendrils wrap around his feet and legs and pull him down, smashing him soundly onto Arn’s back. Arn and the Sea Harpy beneath him both let out forced grunts as nearly 400lbs of Wolfen and gear come crashing down upon them.

Further down the hallway, Valinya floats above several stunned and downed Harpies while several more rush around the corner and swing clubs and other weapons at her.

Seeing the menacing rogues advancing on her Valinya instinctively backs up slowly to keep some distance while singing a new tune, one that sounds a bit dissonant.  

Two of the Harpies seem quite affected by the Daze but the third one, along the right hand wall, still seems to have his wits about him, though he doesn’t realize his companions have been thus ensorcelled.

Hurrying to finish the downed thugs in the hall before they can get up, the little druid demonstrates why Forest Floor is considered such a “dirty” fighting style. He jabs the end of his staff toward the face of the thug at his feet who’d had the misfortune of avoiding his previous attack, then suddenly whips it upward, arcing high and back as the other end whips an inch above the floor between the man’s legs and smashes into his crotch.

With a groan, the man clutches his midsection and keels over on his side, coughing.

The growling and barking gets louder from up ahead and Valinya sees a large shadow looming from up around the next corner.

…. Which way is up?  Silver finds herself curled up but still mostly upright.  She lets out a loud growl and heaves upwards, throwing off debris in all directions.  From the momentary flashes of Silver’s scales as the debris shifts, it looks as though she is somewhat battered and scorched, but otherwise still whole.

The dirt and bricks, and some wooden support timbers as well, shift and move about her as she thrashes her draconic head up and to the sides, trying to find a way out. Though Silver can see well in even the lowest of light, she is surrounded by pitch blackness, but then again, maybe it’s just dirt in her eyes. She blinks her multiple eyelids and shakes her head again then sees a tiny sliver of light. She lunges toward it but it disappears again. The young Dragon continues to scramble, trying to dig herself out of this entombment she finds herself in.

Fortis observes the newcomers, looking to see if any of them are particularly dangerous to the vaporous Valinya or, perhaps worthy of being suborned with a change in their Loyalty.

Nothing seems to draw Fortis’s attention about any of the newcomers, though it does sound as if the Worg, Kruncher, should be arriving on the scene shortly. A quick summary of the battle field shows that one Harpy is stunned with Arn kneeling on top of him, Valinya and Moonscar are near three more Harpies, all laying on their backs, one unconscious, one stunned and one trying to get up. Further down the hall, three more Harpies are present, the two on the right standing there, gazing off into space while the one on the left remains alert and ready to press the attack. Fortis can also see two more Harpies caddy corner even further down the hall. Both are face down on the stone, though one may be crawling away, the Ellyl is not sure. There is a light source down that way as well, he can surmise.

Fortis thinks to himself It looks like most of this is well in hand. I’d better prepare to place that Loyalty spell onto the warg when it appears. I’ve always wanted a pet wolf… well not really, but now that I consider it the idea does present some appeal. As his idle thoughts meander the focused part of his brain shifts the illusion disguise from a large inverted grasshopper to a dingy outcropping of masonry, exactly the same type as in the surrounding tunnel ceiling.

Arn pulls himself fully to his feet, stomping on the downed Sea Harpy beneath him at the same time. The thug lets out an grunting sound and remains prone on the floor. Once standing, Arn wills his mace magically to his gauntleted hand and peers down the hallway, looking for his next target!

The thug squirming beneath Moonscar’s furry feet finally succumbs to his wounds and passes out though the thug next to him remains conscious and begins scrambling away from Moonscar, crawling on his back further down the hall. The standing thug with the long, spiked club takes another swing at Valinya but mishandles his weapon and stands there looking stupid. Fortis can see the two other Sea Harpies further down the next corridor, one continuing to crawl away and the other pulling himself to his knees.
Looking back, Seeker sees masonry and rubble where Silver used to be. His ears ring from the dragonfire-fueled blast, and his nose burns with the oily/crisp smell of the incinerated oil. Whale oil? Hmmm…  He weighs the benefits of participating in the push on the Harpy minions or going back to help his buried comrade. The worg will be a problem, but one that Arn and Valinya can handle from physical and magical angles, while Brother handles, apparently rather ruthlessly, the foot soldiers. Don’t know how bad off Silver is, and it’s not like we can just fight on without her. Really, not a decision at all. “Arn! Silver’s buried! I’m going back to dig her out. Keep the pressure on the Harpies!” Seeker pushes himself back to a kneeling position, preparing to dig out the team dragon.

Arn hears Seeker’s call.  “ Aye there lad, get that girl free, we can handle this lot!”  Arn looks to Moonscar and gestures to the Kankoran druid.   “Follow on my tail wee one, I’ll need ye to watch my flank side.”  

Seeing herself caught in the crossfire between flying weapons behind and a foe before her Valinya gives the thug determined gaze as she floats backward and sings to him.

The Sea Harpy thug looks as if he is going to say something to Valinya, but then just stands there, relaxed shoulders, weapon down, mouth hanging slightly open.

Having managed to finally pull her wings in close to her body, Silver continues to growl and thrash her way through the smouldering rubble towards what she thinks is up.  In doing so, she manages to throw a great deal of it off of herself.

Silver’s pointed, draconian head comes bursting through the top layer of rubble. She sees Seeker making his way toward her and knows that she should be able to shake free in the next moments. Looking around the room, she sees it has been blackened and burnt. The table that once angled across the room as a barricade now lays shattered and smouldering on the far side of the room, the two lanterns that had been hanging from the wall are completely gone. Bits and pieces of exploded barrel lay here and there, little fires burning all about the room. Smoke and dust fill the air, making it hard to see and breathe.

Further down the cramped corridor, Moonscar crouches over several fallen Sea Harpies, his sturdy staff, Sunstroke, held firmly in his paws. He sees one thug, to his left, trying to pull himself along the floor away from the rabid Druid and the ghostly Valinya, floating just above him. Three more thugs, standing, block the far end of the hallway, but they have the look of one of Valinya’s songs in their eyes, staring blankly ahead. Moonscar hears movement further down the hall, around a corner where he cannot see. The sound of hard claws on stone, like the sound Sings to Moon makes while coursing with him along a cobbled city street. Then the smell hits him. Strong. It smells of anger and blood. The Worg is approaching.

Moonscar steps forward with an exasperated sigh and swats the last moving thug with his staff, “Stop squirming you mole!” then calls down the hall in Wolfen, “Little puppy want to play fetch?”

sl28a.jpgMoonscar steps up and swats the crawling man in the thighs in the darkening corridor. Seeker, with the only friendly light, has moved away from the mouth of the tunnel and the shadows are getting deeper, even for those who see well in the dark. The rogue tries to roll out of the way but cannot avoid the crushing power of Sunstroke. The sound of breaking bone echoes down the hallway followed by a gasping sigh as the man loses consciousness. As his head hits the bricks of the tunnel floor, a loud howl fills the area and a growling, Wolfen voice can be heard calling for Kankornan blood! The voice is followed by the Worg, who comes leaping into the corridor, slamming two of the dazed Sea Harpies down in the process. The beast is huge, easily 4’ at the shoulder and well over 300 lbs. It’s dark brown fur is matted and tangled and its eyes burn with a dark intelligence. Saliva falls out from between its sharp yellow teeth. “I thought I smelled a little snack in here,” it bellows out in Wolfen, looking square at Moonscar.

Arn steps up and hurls his mace at the new foe.   He calls out again.  “Fortis!  Time for ye to shine and lend some fire power to this fight!”.     

Arn steps up once more, catching his mace upon the return and prepares himself for some close combat fighting now that he’s caught up closer to the Sea Harpy Thugs.

The enchanted mace catches the Worg square in the dirty, brown chest. The beast tries to twist out of the way but to no avail. It makes a squealing sound like a crying puppy and flies back, falling over on top of some of the other Sea Harpies littering the hallway.

Arn sneers inside his enchanted helm. Yeah, he may be big, but Arn’s faced down a Tusker already, he can handle the Worg. Time for a good fight.   Hopefully Silver is alright and they will be united. Arn feels this is just the first wave of what could be a bigger battle to come.    

“Hit ‘em hard and hit ‘em fast, I’m sure they have more nasties waitin’ for us!”   The dwarf calls out to his friends.    

Fortis concentrates for a second to bring the worg under his command using the Loyalty spell. “Sit boy!”

The Worg growls then makes a high-pitched yelping sound and cranes his neck around to look in Fortis’s direction, its tongue hanging out of its mouth and tail wagging rapidly. The Sea Harpy that had been underneath the now prone Worg pulls himself out from underneath the shaggy, fanged beast. Seeker sees Silver’s head poking out of the rubble, struggling to get free.

sl28b.jpgScrambling over to the pile of rocks and dragon, Seeker’s great paws throw chunks of masonry left and right in an attempt to free his comrade. “Looking good, Silver.” He finally flips off a large chunk of brick that had been pinning the dragon’s wing to the floor. “C’mon, let’s get back to the excitement!” Silver flicks a quick glance at the big Wolfen, to see a twinkle in his eye. Yes, Silver, I know getting buried alive is excitement, too. It was a joke.

Taking a quick break, Valinya looks around the battlefield to assess where everyone is and which of the Harpies seem to be alert enough to be a threat while maintaining her spells.  

It continues to be utter chaos in the hallway. Valinya sees two Harpys ahead of her, laying on the ground but trying to get to their feet. They had been subject to her Daze spells, but when the Worg came crashing through, he knocked them down, breaking the spell. A third Harpy still stands Dazed against the wall, oblivious to all that is going on around him. Moonscar, observes the same hallway, though masked in a transparent magical shimmer as he looks through Valinya’s floating, gaseous body. Back in the other room, Silver shakes the rubble and dirt from her back and wings and looks at Seeker with a toothy, Dragon grin.

Silver gathers herself and steps directly away from the rubble pile, taking stock of what is going on.  She shakes herself some more and looks down the hallway full of activity.  Hmm, disappointing.  Nothing to kill close by.  Silver notes the odd behavior of the Worg.  “What’s with the Worg?  I thought he’d be more aggressive.”

Moonscar takes a few steps up, moving through Valinya’s wispy body of air and holds his staff in front of him in a defensive position, watching the two Sea Harpies trying to get to their feet but holds his strike, knowing that he would be out of position to attack after his advance. Instead of rising, the nearest Harpy crawls backward, away from Moonscar and Valinya and the others, trying to move around the corner of the hallway. Next to him, the Worg continues scrambling to its feet, growling at everyone around him. The shaggy beast pulls itself to a sitting position, gazing back down the hallway in Fortis’s direction.

Finally back on his feet, Arn looks down the hallway, confident that Seeker can handle anything behind him. He looks down the hallway and sees Moonscar around the ghost-like form of Valinya and a couple of Sea Harpy Thugs and regaining their footing. The dwarf smiles a wry grin beneath his enchanted helmet. “Time to play…” he mutters and starts down the  hallway, almost skipping in step as he steps over the fallen bodies of Sea Harpy thugs. In his movements, he casually throws his mace again, aiming towards the thug towards his left side, hoping once again to inflict pain and damage upon this band of foes.    

Arn’s mace flies out and smashes the crawling Sea Harpy square in the back and the man collapses to the ground with a crunch of broken bones. As the mace flies back to his hand, Arn feels the heel of his boots grinding into the legs of another Sea Harpy he happens to be standing on.

Fortis stretches a stony appendage at the remaining harpy and directs the worg to savage its former captor. “Sick em!”

The man’s eyes go wide at the sound of the voice coming from seemingly nowhere as the Worg turns toward him, saliva dripping from between sharp teeth. “Yield! I yield!” he cries, panic in his voice. He scoots away a bit, heading for the nearby corner.

Seeker grins. “Let’s go, Silver!” He turns and sees the tentacle patch is still between him and the rest of the team. He takes a run and launches himself into a forward roll, aiming for the far side. “Woohoo - ack!” He almost makes it, Charnag Velve catches on the door frame and the big guy goes down to one knee. Gotta work on that some more, I guess. His forward momentum lost, he looks up to see a startled Harpy getting to his feet. “Howdy!” grins the giant Wolfen, his fangs gleaming.

The surprised and battered Sea Harpy looks at Seeker and the silver Dragon coming up behind him and goes pale. He drops back to the floor crying “Yield, yield!” and throwing down his weapon.

Valinya giggles as Moonscar walks through her then floats back to her right to make room in the passageway for others … as if they couldn’t just walk through her easily enough.  Still, propriety must be maintained.  A please smile ghosts on her lips as the Harpies see the tables turned and they begin to yield.  “Now we can get some answers,” she says mostly to herself.  

The druid steps into the next room, peering about for any surprises. Concerned about her safety after the explosion he reaches out mentally to his companion, Sings to Moon, hoping she’s okay and to let her know that he is.

Moonscar senses his friend, she is wounded, but not seriously, but cut off from the rest of the group by the cave in. She is scared but will stand and wait for him to return.

Silver looks down the hallway, searching for an opponent to pounce on.  She growls loudly in frustration not seeing one, then starts looking for a way to squeeze down the hallway.

Silver squeezes down the narrow hallway, moving through the black tendrils on the ground and sliding past Seeker on his right while trampling right over the nearest Sea Harpy that had been crying surrender. As Silver steps on him, the Sea Harpy immediately quiets down and holds as still as possible, hoping to not draw the Dragon’s ire or fire.

Ignoring the cries of “yield” from his former compatriot, Cruncher the Worg leaps on the Sea Harpy laying on the ground near him. The large wolf claws and bites at the helpless, surrendering thug without mercy. After just a moment, the man’s leather armor is shredded and his throat has been ripped out, forever ending his ability to call for surrender.

Fortis peers around from his high perch and addresses his companions in a voice that seems soft after the violent explosion of a few moments ago “Should we secure that prisoner and regroup before we proceed onward?”

Arn bellows back to his companions, “Secure one or two of them if ye can, but I think we have more trouble waitin’ for us down this hallway.   I’m not waiting, I’m going to go find it!”.   With that, Arn starts heading back south down the passageway, shield up in case of any more surprise attacks.

Arn stomps over the rest of the Sea Harpy he had been standing on, shoulders past Moonscar and his ready staff, past a magically Dazed thug and charges down the hallway to end up just behind the Worg who is viciously mauling another Sea Harpy.

“Fortis!  Why didn’t you call him off?”  Shocked at the needless violence, Valinya seems stunned.

Seeker smiles at Arn’s actions. At least someone gets it. “Coming, Arn! Keep pressing them!” Seeker charges up the corridor, nimbly negotiating the various downed foes, standing allies, and random detritus. He calls out as he passes, “C’mon, folks, those guys aren’t a threat. Securing them will just slow us down. Don’t give the rest time to regroup!”

The small crowded hallway seems to get even smaller as Seeker and Arn make their way to the far end.

Moonscar moves up next to Seeker making room for the Dragon to come up behind him.

Silver continues to grumble, and moves up behind Moonscar and Valinya.  Although she doesn’t actively seek to harm the Sea Harpies underfoot, she doesn’t make any effort to avoid them either. She pauses behind Moonscar and looks to Fortis and Valinya, saying “A quick heal might be handy if someone could oblige.”

Sensing that the foe he is standing over is no more, Cruncher the Worg lets out a loud growl and bounds forward rushing out of sight around the corner. Another growl and a high pitched scream indicate he has found another opponent.

Fortis glances at the departing worg. Well, I may not have gotten the chance to interrogate Cruncher, but at least he is tearing into our opponents. If he survives I suppose we can ask him about the Sea Harpies and the Lotus Lady then. Then he looks as Silver, assessing the extent of her injury. Silver is pretty big now, it will take a lot of energy to heal her… I should be careful how I balance my fatigue but I don’t want to leave her in danger.

Arn makes his way around the corner and watches as the Worg tears into yet another one of the Sea Harpies. Arn thinks for a moment, he recalls hitting the beast with his mace, but he can only assume that either Valinya or Fortis are involved magically controlling the beast. No matter, one less enemy to worry about.

Arn looks at the hallways and heads left down the south passage, thinking that the other Sea Harpy Thugs were heading that direction. He makes his way down, shield at the ready, but not slowing down one bit.   

Cast of Characters: 

+Arne Jamtgaard plays Seeker, a teenage Wolfen Warlord
+Stephen Kolmetz plays Valinya, an Elven Wildsong Mage
+Mike Biancone plays Arn, a surly Dwarven Warrior
+Amergin O'Kai plays Moonscar, the esoteric Kankoran Druid
+Daniel White plays Silver, a young and curious Dragon
+Mike Williams plays Gorgukk Torgnaz, an Ogre sailor and mauler
and +Jason GURPS as the GM

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