Grand Duchy 25

Grand Duchy of Adventure

Session 25
July 29, 2014

An Audience with the King

Soladain 3rd of Flaurmont, 1001AC

Finding the Table Rock

The Grey Company follows its newest member, Iris, across the Moor to where she claims to have found the "Table Rock." The group crests a short rise and peers down into a shallow dell below to see a large boulder balanced upon one tiny little base. If anything nearby was to be thought of as a table, this was it.
The Table Rock

While everyone worked on pitching a camp nearby, Marcel spent some time examining the rock. He walked around it then climbed it all the way to the top. From the top of the rock, he could see the entirety of the dell, about 1/2 mile across and 1/4 mile wide, though he could not see beyond the bordering ridges. He noted several possible approaches into the dell and quite a few places to hide in low spots, behind bushes and even a few stands of trees here and there. 

After singing his song of tribute to the Fairy King of Horses, Marcel finally climbed down and started helping with the camp, mainly cooking up another batch of his Moor Stew. Iris politely declined any of Marcel's stew and instead ate dried rations from the homestead and some berries she had picked earlier that day while traveling.

It was decided that since they were expected to be awake at midnight, for some to start sleeping now, even though it was early. When midnight came, Marcel was already on the top of the rock, humming and whistling in anticipation. The Company was all awake while Marcel stood on one foot and whistled the summoning tune. He kept up his tune for an hour, but Fairy King of Horses did not show. The only thing he had to show for it was a stubbed toe gained while trying to balance himself on the uneven surface of the Table Rock.

Disappointed, Marcel climbs down and has a few ideas as to why the Fairy King of Horses did not make an appearance - namely certain non-believers in the Company. He is then reminded that the Traladaran legend stated that one must balance and whistle 3 nights in a row before the Fairy King of Horses would appear. Disheartened anyway, Marcel climbs into his bedroll and goes to sleep. Griffin has a bit more difficulty falling asleep after the ruckus on the top of the rock, but fortunatley, the group had no specific plans to head out early and it was planned for everyone to be able to sleep in plenty.

Lunadain 4th of Flaurmont, 1001AC

The Ruins of Lumm

The ruins of Lumm
The next morning the Company decide to explore the nearby Moor and do a little hunting and foraging. Around noon, Iris spots what appears to be the Old Moor Road. Sure enough, the group follows the remnants of this ancient road and eventually come to the ruins of an abandoned Traladaran village, which Iris says is named Lumm. She had been her before, studying the ancient Traladarans and their
culture. While looking around the ruins, which are nothing more than flat spaces and the occasional outline of a rock foundation, the remains of a recent campfire are discovered. Curious, the Company searches the area and some tracks and a second nearby fire pit are discovered. It is determined that possibly up to 10 or more people recently camped here. Marcel finds some potential boot prints on the north side of the ruins, but no other details are discerned. Marcel attempts to tell about what he knows of the ruins and the ancient Traladarans of the Moor, but Iris seems to relish every opportunity to correct him and explain the true nature of the ruins. Undaunted, Marcel proclaims that "not all learning comes from books!"

With the day growing long, the group heads back toward their camp at Table rock. There, Marcel cooks dinner, and again, Iris passes on his meal, preferring to eat other rations. At midnight, Marcel climbs to the top of the rock and begins whistling. He instructs his companions below to join hands and circle the Table Rock. Griffin and Draven join hands, though Iris just stands uncomfortably to Draven's right, merely feigning participation in this elaborate ritual that Marcel has concocted. Again, an hour or so goes by with Marcel whistling and now doing some elaborate one-legged dance complete with wild arm waving and hopping. Alas, the improved ritual again produces no Fairy King of Horses. Marcel is more direct with his accusations of why the ritual failed to work, singling out "those that did not hold hands" but is again reminded that it is only the second night of waiting. Sure that the next night will produce results, the Company beds down for the rest of the night.

Gromdain 5th of Fluarmont, 1001AC


The next day, the Company decides to stay closer to the camp and Table Rock. In small groups and individually, they range out, not ever going more than a few miles from the dell, looking for food, hunting and watching for any signs of horses or other travelers. Griffin does spot some tracks of some sort of large cat, probably the mountain lion they have heard on previous nights. 

Later that afternoon, a band of 8 people are spotted headed over the ridge and toward the camp. Upon closer inspection, they appear to be Traladarans and in quite bad shape. They are wounded, dirty and worn folk, barely able to lift their feet when they walk. They are greeted by Marcel and Draven and it is learned from the groups leader, a man named Conrad, that they are refugees from Hokol. They are welcomed into the camp and they tell of their story of escaping from their home when it was attacked and burned by the Goblins. They fled into the woods and became lost trying to find their way to safety while still avoiding the Goblins that seemed to be everywhere. The wandered for some time in the Dymrak across the river and south of Susikyn until they came to the river and the Moor. They have been foraging in the Moor for some time but have finally reached the point that the felt they needed to return to the homesteads and seek out help from others.

Iris seems considerably put out by the inclusion of this group of Traladarans and moves her bedroll a good distance away from the camp, spending her time that evening alone. Griffin goes to speak to her and notices her studying from a magical tome, a Grimoire similar to the one he has seen Ree and Remar both study from. 

Back at the camp, Marcel and Draven share the Company's business on the Moor. They talk about the Fairy King of Horses and find that Conrad and his people share different ideas on how to summon the elusive horse spirit. Later that night, Marcel organizes everyone (except Iris) into an elaborate ritual designed to garner the attention of the Fairy King of Horses. Upon the suggestion of Conrad, Marcel decides he needs some candles, but there are none to be had. He settles for asking Iris if he can use her lantern, despite it being out of oil. Reluctantly, Iris agrees to let him use the lantern and she rejoins the group, though watches from a distance. Marcel also takes two apples from his pack, as Conrad says that they are vital to calling the Fairy King of Horses. Marcel puts everyone in their place, arranges the apples, lanter (with burning twigs inside) and himself, on top of the Table Rock and, for the third night in a row, begins his summoning ritual, beginning to believe himself a mighty sorcerer, calling upon mighty arcane powers. Iris scoffs at his elaborate act and stifles a laugh under her breath.

The King Arrives

This time though, Marcel's summoning ritual does something. The sound of horses fills the air and shortly several large horses appear and ring the small valley. A large black horse reveals himself in a magical beam of moolight on the highest point of the nearby ridge.

Excited by this development, Marcel calls out to the horse and the black beast begins to approach. The other horses remain on the surrounding ridge, taking up positons spaced equally around the dell. As the horse gets closer, it motions with its head for Marcel to climb down, which he does so without hesitation. Everyone else stands nearby, speechless, watching the large black horse approach. 

Marcel and Iris both begin to move toward the approaching horse, but he snorts and stamps his feet, indicating to them to stay where they are. No one moves as the horse covers the remaining ground to the Table Rock. When it gets closer, it appears that the horse bears some type of adornments around its neck and back, some type of cloth and metal finery of some sort. The massive horse then passes behind the Table Rock and as it appears on the other side, it has undergone an incredible change. In the place of the regal black horse now stands a tall and muscular Centaur, half man and half horse. It is clearly the same beast as the decorations previously seen are still present on the creature. It rears up on its powerful hind legs and swings a long, sharp axe through the air over his head threateningly!
The Fairy King of Horses is a sight to behold!
He demands to know why "these Humans" have come to his Moor. Marcel engages him and begins going on and on, telling him that they have come to learn the location of the ruins of Xitaqa. Before even listening to their request, the Fairy King of Horses tells Marcel and his companions to immediately release their horses from "slavery." Marcel quickly moves to release his mount, Pepito, and urges the others to do the same. Reluctantly, the others release their horses, hoping that the bonds they share with their animals will be strong enough to ensure that they stick around. Unfortunately, once freed, the horses all move away and run up to join the other horses on the surrounding ridge-line. 

Marcel asks again about Xitaqa and the Fairy King of Horses responds that he will share the information the Company asks for but only if they do something for him first. He demands the heads of Bailakask and Kalkask, two Werewolves that have been enemies of the horses and Centaurs (and the homesteaders, as well) for many years. He gives very specific directions to the lair of the Werewolves and even adds some tactics in dealing with them, suggesting a night assault when most of the pack will be out hunting, then lay in ambush for the rest to return in the morning. 

When the converasation is over, the Fairy King of Horses steps up and puts his hand out toward Marcel. Mistaking this as an offer to shake hands, Marcel reaches for his hand. The Fairy King pulls his hand back and stomps his heavy horse hooves. "NO! Do not touch me, Human," he shouts! "Give me the apples!" Stunned, Marcel hands the apples over and the Fairy King of Horses gallops off into the night, his entourage following.

Tribute for the Fairy King of Horses

Continued on GDA26 - Werewolves on the Horizon

Cast of Characters: 

Garrett "Griffin" Constantine, a Thyatian rogue of a gambler from Penhaligon, rolled by +Arne Jamtgaard 

Marcel Maasa homely but sincere wielder of spears aspiring to cooking greatness, commanded by +Christian Blouin 

Draven Rickart, a Thyatian Acolyte of the Church of Karameikos, ministered by +Jason Packer 

Iris Varda, a Thyatian explorer and historian searching for answers and adventure, guided by +Alex Safatli  

Remar Umerus, an Alphatian battle mage that escaped forced service in the Thyatian army, conjured by +Ben Lipe and currently in NPC mode. 

and +Jason Woollard as The DM


  1. "You won't believe me but my great gran called the Fairy King of Horse wint she was wee." The Old Munt as we called him. Vikk Munthelesson was his Gods given name, if that kind of thing mattered to you. He took another long draught of the winter stock and looked us all in the eye before he spoke again.

    "Near the ruins of Lumm, where she would gather a bit of Feldspar or Fools Good now and again." He smiled revealing more gaps than teeth, "Well, she didn't call him as much as he came for her. When gran told it, as she did now and again on midsummer's eve, she had spent most of the morning and afternoon there and it twas unseasonably hot that day."

    Parts of the small crowd were either muttering to themselves paying little attention or wandering off. It wasn't late but the six Bullotten sisters usually wandering near the road of their fathers farthest orchard near dusk and most boys and some of the men would vy for their fancy about that time.

    "Leave the tale early you cretins!!! N'ae a one of you are worth the time if this tellingdoesn't grip the mind and flutter the soul!!" Old Munt stood, bent backed and rheumy, shaking his fist at the folks leaving. In a few moments, it was just my little brother who was fast asleep at my feet, and the Munt. "Boy hear this tale. Heed it. The Fae touch all our lives. Sometimes early, sometimes at the dusk of our time." He held my eyes a bit too long for my liking but the crazy deep in the black of his eyes held me, rapt for an eternity in that moment. "They are ending you know. Not dying mind you. ENDING." He sat back and motioned to the passing bar wench for more mead, murmuring about not wanting warm water in his glass like the last time. "Gran knew. He showed her. That day near old Lumm. After napping under the standing stones, tucked in where none could see her without looking, she awoke to the sound of hooves crunching along the rocks near her. Not fearing, for the Orcs didn't come round those parts back then like now, she sat up quietly and saw him. At first gran thought was a mounted rider, the sun was in her eyes and obscured him till she got close.. Like when you look at Jaykin's pond as you ride into town on still day, the water looks like the finest glass. You know it ain't but you believe in all the same. Gran was close enough to touch him when she realized, no man stood before her. She told me she never feared but was only puzzled with a wonderment of a child. This is what saved her. The Fae aren't governed my social laws like men but to them, we are more fickle and unpredictable than the most evil of the Fae."

    1. He was starting to hit his stride with the story as the wench arrived with two more flagons, both for him. "Don't you go ordering any more Munt! I am tired of your complaining and you sitting at a damn table all day long tell your fables to anyone dumb enough to listen." She nodded her head in my direction but I only scowled back at her. "These two are your last and Fluvin says no more. You are already into him for 2 dozen anyway." She turned and left but Munt was only concerned with another, longer pull and continuing his story. "Gran said he smelled like when her momma would till the garden in springtime as the flowers were in full bloom. Earthy and alive. Gran said she was gone for a score of years with him that day but awoke later and only a few hours had passed." As he mentioned the passge of time, it was about time I was getting home with my brother. I started to beg off the tale for another time. He was getting a bit frantic as I made it clear I was leaving. As I walked away he said,"Listen boy, what is time? sands through the hourglass to you but to the Fae the sands flows forward and backward and sometimes not at all, yet still they are ending!! Have you no love of life boy!! One day we kill it all with fire!! The world burns!! Burns I tell you!!" It was no surprise that The Munt was going off a bit crazy, he had done it before. The last thing I heard as I hurried Stenn out the door, "Heed me, let it soak into your very soul. We are killing this world and the Fae with it." Shouts of 'Old Fool' and 'Crazy Curmudgeon' were directed his way. I bumped into someone as we were leaving and I hurried an apology to the armored man, "Forgive me sir, I am more clumsy than I am able to mask." He didn't appear to notice for he had a distant look in his eye. He gently but firmly moved me aside as he continued in with his companions. I noticed he was missing his left hand and only a stump remained. Quickly, I hurried my brother along and wondered if I man like him would listen to Old Munt