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ZONE - Longship on the Rime


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#1 Maverick-Werewolf

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Posted 26 June 2017 - 08:44 AM

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The longship doesn't have anything by way of privacy - it is certainly a far cry from the tall ships the Achaeans sail on the open seas. However, it cuts through the river quickly, and its spacious bottom provides everyone a decent amount of room to sit or lay on their bedrolls. The oars lining both sides of the ship are manned by vikings, some of whom joke and laugh as they go about their work, seeming comfortable as they also sit behind rows of shields. The atmosphere on the ship is actually quite enjoyable, as the Nordlings seem wholly at home on the river.

 

The Rime River itself is more than wide enough to accommodate the longship, and Eydis can generally be found standing just behind the dragon-head prow, keeping a lookout, no matter the time of day or weather conditions.

 

---

 

The party boarded the longship one by one, as Eydis watched. "Mind your manners during your stay," she said as the oarsmen set to work getting them out of port, once everyone was aboard. "It'll take just a few days to reach Rimegard. Luckily for you, you picked the fastest ship that sails this river."

 

She then headed to the front prow, though there was currently little to see. The ship cut through the thick morning fog that lay over the river, leaving a heavy moisture hanging in the air... and with it, a strange sense of danger, though they seemed to be moving at an impressively decent pace.

 

But the Vikings hardly seemed worried; all except for one, the one who had given Huo his cloak, who fidgeted and paced up and down the rows of oarsmen.

 

"Ingi!" one of the oarsmen said with false gravity, "Keep that up, and you'll wear a trench in the bottom of the ship!"

 

Several others chuckled. The brown-bearded viking, Ingi, waved his companion off as he headed instead for the back of the ship, taking a seat and staring out into the fog. He seemed deliberate in taking a place far away from the fortune hunters, the strangers who had joined them in Baldur's Fjord. Caiden shot the nervous viking a glance as he took a seat, but said nothing about it, returning his gaze ahead of the ship as he stood flexing his fingers. The Venator seemed tense.

 

Eydis, however, did not. She looked back at the newcomers and said simply, "Relax, travelers. Few hostile tribes navigate the Rime this early in the morn, and their numbers will be even fewer as we draw closer to Fort Munin. If I may ask, to where are you bound? I've traveled much of Northrim and know many paths, by land and by sail. If I can be of assistance, I shall, especially after your generosity."


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#2 Dalton Westmoore

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Posted 27 June 2017 - 04:52 PM

 "If I may ask, to where are you bound? I've traveled much of Northrim and know many paths, by land and by sail. If I can be of assistance, I shall, especially after your generosity."

 

"Well, we're makin' our way tae Endibraut, and from there tae th' Jagged Edge," Agethar explained for the group "goin' tae enter some old, demon-infested dwarven clan-hall tae find some ol' sword."

 

The Venator shrugged and said "It may be a suicide mission, but at least we be gettin' paid."

 

---

 

Malvolio stood silently, arms crossed as he watched the ship move up the river.

 

It didn't look like he would be talking unless someone talked to him.

 

---

 

Huo Shiye breathed in the morning breeze and glanced at the others. Many of them looked like they were nervous, or at least expecting trouble, like the largest of the male fortune hunters.

 

The priest made his way over to the man - Caiden - and stood beside him, his cloak fluttering in the breeze as he followed the man's line of sight.

 

"You seem tense, westerner," Huo said, glancing at the man's face "do you suspect that this man - Ingi - may cause trouble?"

 

 



#3 Maverick-Werewolf

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Posted 27 June 2017 - 05:52 PM

"Well, we're makin' our way tae Endibraut, and from there tae th' Jagged Edge," Agethar explained for the group "goin' tae enter some old, demon-infested dwarven clan-hall tae find some ol' sword."

 

Eydis arched a brow in interest, turning to regard Agethar as he spoke.

 

The Venator shrugged and said "It may be a suicide mission, but at least we be gettin' paid."

 

"Indeed," Eydis agreed, apparently wholeheartedly. "That's certainly an interesting journey, to say the least. I'm afraid you're bound to the one place I haven't been, seeing as it's no place for mortals... though I suppose, going to Endibraut, you could be among the first to traverse what I've heard many berserkers call the Impassable Pass. They say it isn't truly a pass at all, but at least it'd be some form of marker."

 

---

 

Caiden stood in silence, seeming to brood and concentrate rather hard upon it. But, the moment Huo drew near, the Venator looked back at him.

 

"You seem tense, westerner," Huo said, glancing at the man's face "do you suspect that this man - Ingi - may cause trouble?"

 

The monster hunter seemed to consider that for a second or two before he answered, "Maybe. But he's not my immediate concern." He nodded toward the water. "There's movement below us. It's been following since we left port."

 

Huo, however, heard nothing.


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#4 Burger Warrior

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Posted 27 June 2017 - 11:10 PM

Funnily enough, nobody caught sight of Percula again after she went upstairs with Caiden for the night.

 

-----

 

Korvarl Silvershield had been stoic as ever… and still disgruntled with Elisario as the group headed out. He stayed as far away as physically possible from the Southron, while still remaining within cohesion of the other adventurers. At least he wasn’t grumbling into his beard the whole way, but it was obvious he was going to hold a grudge with the rogue.

 

His ire was briefly offset by amusement - and faint relief - as two idiots fought over which of them would pay and then finally paid of their ship’s captain in full. Admittedly, Korvarl was already feeling a little uneasy as he boarded the craft, but at least there was a familiar - and even comforting - lack of space; horizontally, anyway. Still, being off of solid ground for the first time in living memory made him briefly doubt his intentions to follow this path, but on second thought that’d be undermining himself right in front of Elnira.

 

Nay, I’ll stick with this route. Damn the consequences! And my queasy, blasted stomach…

 

With a quiet huff and a clank of his gear, Silvershield found a place to sit not far from the front of the longboat, where he could overhear some conversation between the captain… ess, or whatever humans called a female captain (them and their damned strange customs…) and a Venator from their group.

 

"Indeed," Eydis agreed, apparently wholeheartedly, after the Venator was explaining their quest. "That's certainly an interesting journey, to say the least. I'm afraid you're bound to the one place I haven't been, seeing as it's no place for mortals... though I suppose, going to Endibraut, you could be among the first to traverse what I've heard many berserkers call the Impassable Pass. They say it isn't truly a pass at all, but at least it'd be some form of marker."

 

“...I fergot how stupid that name sounds.” Korvarl huffed, getting to his feet. “Why call it a pass if’t ain’t a pass at’ll, eh?” He shook his head. “‘Berserkers’ oughta stay in fights ‘n stop namin’ things.” The dwarf decided, his ill-temper rearing its ugly head.


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#5 Sareth

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Posted 27 June 2017 - 11:42 PM

Allya had been examining the ship—she had been on boats only a couple of times, and never on a Nordling longboat—when she heard the northern Venator talking with the captain, Eydis.

 

"Indeed," Eydis agreed, apparently wholeheartedly, after the Venator was explaining their quest. "That's certainly an interesting journey, to say the least. I'm afraid you're bound to the one place I haven't been, seeing as it's no place for mortals... though I suppose, going to Endibraut, you could be among the first to traverse what I've heard many berserkers call the Impassable Pass. They say it isn't truly a pass at all, but at least it'd be some form of marker."

 

"I have never heard of that place" she said, entering the conversation. "What is it?" she asked the captain, her curiosity piqued—for both personal and practical reasons. Though the name alone was certainly evocative...

 

***

 

"... though I suppose, going to Endibraut, you could be among the first to traverse what I've heard many berserkers call the Impassable Pass. They say it isn't truly a pass at all, but at least it'd be some form of marker."

 

“...I fergot how stupid that name sounds. Why call it a pass if’t ain’t a pass at’ll, eh? ‘Berserkers’ oughta stay in fights ‘n stop namin’ things.”

 

"And dwarves ought to know better than to insult Odin's warriors in the presence of northmen. We Berserkers can have terrible tempers" Valya said, having caught the dwarf's insult—her voice calm, though the bite of anger in her words was unmistakeable. 


"This means I will not have to regret sending back their envoy short a few limbs."

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#6 Sephsekla

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Posted 28 June 2017 - 01:56 AM

Garandros stood on the deck, leaning against the side. A characteristic frown on his face, he scanned the banks of the river. He wasn't sure what he was looking for but carelessness had cost him his life before.

 

His attention was caught by a conversation a few paces away. Agethar, the talkative Venator was chatting away, true to form, to the captain about their quest. So much for trying to keep a low profile.

 

He turned from the river and paced over.

 

"I have never heard of that place. What is it?" Allya, the elf, had also taken an interest.

 

"And what do you know about Endibraut? You must have heard stories." Garandros added.

 

 

--------

 

Elnira sat on the deck, enjoying the fresh air.  She whistled tunelessly as she sketched parts of the longship in her notebook. This culture was fascinating!

 

She put down her pen at the sound of Korvarl and winced internally. The other dwarf had been so nice to her when they first met but he had clearly been in a bad mood ever since. Was it something that she'd done?

 

With a sigh she pushed Mr Whiskers off her feet where he'd been curled up and quietly walked over.

 

"Mr Silvershield, is everything all right?"


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#7 Maverick-Werewolf

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Posted 28 June 2017 - 10:16 AM

Eydis seemed to be enjoying having company, for once, and she replied promptly to the assorted questions.

 

"I have never heard of that place" Allya said, entering the conversation. "What is it?" she asked the captain.

 

But before she could answer, Korvarl huffed as he stood, “...I fergot how stupid that name sounds. Why call it a pass if’t ain’t a pass at’ll, eh?” He shook his head. “‘Berserkers’ oughta stay in fights ‘n stop namin’ things.”
 

Their Viking captain's expression turned dark then, but Valya spoke for her.

 

"And dwarves ought to know better than to insult Odin's warriors in the presence of northmen. We Berserkers can have terrible tempers" Valya said, having caught the dwarf's insult—her voice calm, though the bite of anger in her words was unmistakeable.

 

"Mark her words, master dwarf," Eydis said. "There may be many Nordlings who hold... unsavory opinions of berserkers, but I'm proud to say my father is one. Had I not taken to the sea, I would have gladly become one, myself."

 

But she changed the subject then, resuming her usual amicable tone. "The Impassable Pass is a point in the edge where the mountains are slightly shorter. Not truly a pass, as I said, but they say some Men have crossed it before... great heroes and such. Of course, saying the mountains are smaller there is akin to taking comfort in that some dragons are smaller than others." She gave a chuckle. "It makes little difference.

 

"Regardless, it has its tales of those who have traversed it, as I said, though those stories also speak of monsters, as with anywhere else in the Edge. It may be a good place to start, though I know not where your destination is in the Edge itself."

 

"And what do you know about Endibraut? You must have heard stories." Garandros added.

 

Eydis grinned as she replied, "Endibraut? Certainly. It's one of the best mead halls in all of Northrim, a gathering and resting place of great heroes and hunters, and the Brotherhood of the Bifrost Banner, who do battle against the Chaos races in the mountains. It would be a fine place to gather yourselves on your journey. If you go there, tell them Eydis gave you her blessings. Perhaps you can get a round on me."


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#8 Burger Warrior

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Posted 28 June 2017 - 10:29 AM

"And dwarves ought to know better than to insult Odin's warriors in the presence of northmen. We Berserkers can have terrible tempers" One particularly tall, thick woman in their party remarked. It wasn’t exactly hard to tell that she was a Berserker, or at least some kind of warrior.

 

Not that Korvarl cared right now, his feelings figuratively gushing out, now. His jaw set, his beard bristled, and he opened his mouth to let her have a piece of his-

 

...mind.

 

The dishonored dwarf stopped, and time seemed to slow as Elnira stepped in the way, like a valkyrie come to deliver him from battle. Silvershield hesitated, his voice catching in his throat as the dwarven lady approached him, looking awfully concerned. The tightness in his shoulders was suddenly gone, and the twists in his thick guts were unwound as Korvarl’s breath eased out in a sigh.

 

It took him a minute to realize he’d just been staring at her awkwardly, after she asked if he was okay.

 

“O-of course I’m fine!” He huffed instinctively, crossing his thick arms. Korvarl quickly realized that probably came off wrong, and he sputtered momentarily. “I-I’m all fine, lass. No need t’worry.” He added, to be sure, a faint blush barely showing through his short-but-thick beard.

 

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#9 Dalton Westmoore

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Posted 29 June 2017 - 08:14 AM

"Indeed, that's certainly an interesting journey, to say the least. I'm afraid you're bound to the one place I haven't been, seeing as it's no place for mortals... though I suppose, going to Endibraut, you could be among the first to traverse what I've heard many berserkers call the Impassable Pass. They say it isn't truly a pass at all, but at least it'd be some form of marker."

 

“...I fergot how stupid that name sounds. Why call it a pass if’t ain’t a pass at’ll, eh? ‘Berserkers’ oughta stay in fights ‘n stop namin’ things.”
 

"And dwarves ought to know better than to insult Odin's warriors in the presence of northmen. We Berserkers can have terrible tempers"

 

"Can we all just agree that it's a stupid name, an' if we actually pass through it, mebbe we kin give it a better one?" Agethar suggested nervously.

 

A fight breaking out on the ship was the last thing they needed.

 

---

 

, "Endibraut? Certainly. It's one of the best mead halls in all of Northrim, a gathering and resting place of great heroes and hunters, and the Brotherhood of the Bifrost Banner, who do battle against the Chaos races in the mountains. It would be a fine place to gather yourselves on your journey. If you go there, tell them Eydis gave you her blessings. Perhaps you can get a round on me."

 

"I've heard about this brotherhood," Malvolio said "there are a lot of famous warriors up there in that old fort. Maybe some of them can assist us on our quest."

 

---

 

 "Maybe. But he's not my immediate concern. There's movement below us. It's been following since we left port."

 

It took the Priest a moment to register the fact that the man had spoken to him - as he was still taken aback by what he had seen of him by looking at him in the spirit realm, but he finally managed a reply.

 

"Something...has been following us? Tell me, what kinds of creatures lurk in these waters that would pose a threat to us? Back in my homeland, there are many, but I am not familiar with the monsters that inhabit the West." 

 



#10 Maverick-Werewolf

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Posted 30 June 2017 - 08:50 AM

"Can we all just agree that it's a stupid name, an' if we actually pass through it, mebbe we kin give it a better one?" Agethar suggested nervously.

 

A nearby viking rowing the longship snorted and remarked, "Aye, that's what some of our maps need. Something named by a bunch of greedy fortune hunters, several of them Imperials."

 

"Drop it," Eydis ordered, rolling her eyes.

 

---

 

Caiden noticed the way Huo seemed taken aback for a moment, and he subtly narrowed his eye, but said nothing.

 

"Something...has been following us? Tell me, what kinds of creatures lurk in these waters that would pose a threat to us? Back in my homeland, there are many, but I am not familiar with the monsters that inhabit the West."

 

Voros arched a brow slightly, but before he could reply, the waters answered for him.

 

---

 

The ship seemed perfectly peaceful - until, all at once, it wasn't. In the blink of an eye, ten shapes suddenly burst from the river around them, pulling themselves on board the ship with long, spindly, webbed hands. One climbed straight up an oar and pounced on the viking who had been rowing it, biting out his throat before the warrior even had time to see his killer.

 

Everyone who wasn't already standing leapt to their feet as the monsters scurried aboard, the ship swiftly overtaken with shouting and swearing. Caiden drew his sword and Eydis snatched up her spear as the other vikings hefted their own weapons, attempting to fend off the creatures. One man did not let go of his oar in time and was suddenly yanked straight into the river, disappearing in a murky red cloud.

 

In all their quick movement and in the thick fog of the morning, it was hard to discern many details of the creatures. They were about human-sized, but covered in scales, fins, and frills, wet and slick and colored in various dull, watery hues of blue, green, and grey. Their hands were large and webbed, bearing long claws, and their faces were hideous and inhuman, with a huge, gaping mouth full of pointed teeth. Their black, reflective eyes shone with bloodlust.

 

They were like nothing any of them had seen before, even the Venatori... but there were many monsters yet unknown and unnamed in all parts of the realm.

 

Although ten leapt aboard the ship, still more movement lurked in the waters around them. Eydis charged straight for one with her spear, nicking the creature on the side just before it scampered out of the way. They were still fast, but they were noticeable less graceful when out of the water... Which was precisely why four of the ten on the ship were busy throwing oars back into the water while their swimming companions carried them still farther from the ship.

 

"Stop them!" Eydis shouted over the din, as one of her vikings finished off the monster she had wounded. "We mustn't lose the oars!"

 

But the five other monsters on the longship clearly wanted to prevent this from happening, as they split up and began to attack various targets...

 

One lunged for Elnira from behind, but by some miraculous happenstance from the gods, she bent over to protectively pick up Mr. Whiskers at that exact instant ((Luck Roll - Critical Success)). The creature went sprawling over her as a result, missing her entirely. It was on its feet again in an instant, spluttering in frustration as it lifted a great, clawed hand to swipe at her...

 

Another rushed Valya, though it stopped just short of reaching her, as if seeing her size and second-guessing itself ((Talent - Intimidation)). It stopped and circled around her, hissing, as if trying only to keep her from reaching the other monsters that were trying to dump the oars. She could see fear in its eyes as it glanced this way and that, clearly in search of some backup that didn't seem to be coming.

 

A third monster charged Malvolio from behind, and although he heard it coming ((Perception Roll - Success)), he could not turn in time to face it ((Agility Roll - Failure)). He felt the creature deliver him a hard blow to the back, but his armor prevented any real damage. Still, it knocked the wind from his lungs and he staggered forward. When he whirled to battle the monster, he saw it pacing directly in his path to the four monsters dumping the oars. It kept its eyes on him, wary and ready for any counterattacks.

 

Perhaps because he and Huo had been standing in such close proximity, or perhaps because Caiden was the largest single threat on the ship, two monsters crawled out of the water near the edge where Caiden and Huo had been standing. Huo failed to notice them in time to escape receiving a bloody swipe on the arm, which tore his robes and left stinging pain in its wake ((Perception Roll - Failure; -3 HP)) and sending him stumbling back a step or two. However, he managed to maintain focus on his spell to see through the spirit realm ((Spirit Roll - Success)).

 

Caiden reacted with incredible speed, the moment the creature attacked Huo - he simply whirled and delivered a punch to its jaw with enough force to send the monster sprawling to the deck, stunned. But a second scrambled out of the water by his side, lashing out for his chest, but Caiden swiftly dodged and drew his sword.

 

 

((Rundown: There are unknown monsters attacking the ship. There are currently nine on board and an unknown number of them in the water.

  • 4 are going after the oars
  • 1 is attacking Elnira
  • 1 is circling Valya
  • 1 is attacking Malvolio
  • 1 is attacking Caiden
  • 1 is stunned on the deck

Drive the monsters off, if possible. Save as many oars as you can before the creatures dump them in the river.))


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#11 Sareth

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Posted 30 June 2017 - 10:02 AM

Valya drew her sword almost immediately as the attack began, a slight thrill running through her blood. Even she had not expected battle quite this soon into their journey; but if something wanted to challenge them, she would be happy to oblige. That their attackers were inhuman, and unknown did not bother her in the slightest.

 

"Stop them! We mustn't lose the oars!"

 

She saw the problem at once, and immediately resolved to solve it. The solution was a simple one: if the creatures were dead, they could not continue their theft.

 

However at that moment one of the creatures charged her, only to hesitate and hiss instead. Valya did not hesitate. Grinning with bloodlust, she instantly charged the creature, lashing out with a two handed swing of her blade that, if it hit, might very well cleave her foe from shoulder to opposite hip.

 

If she were successful, she intended to continue her charge straight into the four who were busy throwing oars over the side.

 

***

 

While a tiny part of Allya was fascinated by their attackers—she knew little of monsters, a serious failing, she realized; and she didn't even see any hint of recognition in the eyes of the Venators in the group—mostly she was scared. Lucky enough to have not been targeted by the initial attacks, she immediately retreated back a bit, keeping some of the more combat-able of the group between herself and the creatures, and wishing there was something more she could do...

 

"Stop them! We mustn't lose the oars!"

 

Seeing that a number of oars had already been thrown overboard and were being carried away, inspiration struck. Closing her eyes—desperately hoping the others would protect her; explaining would take too long—she focused, reaching out to the local spirits: the spirits of the river, of any aquatic plants that might snare or entangle—asking for their aid, for them to slow or stop the attacking creatures in the water, possibly even to redirect the floating oars back towards the ship....


"This means I will not have to regret sending back their envoy short a few limbs."

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#12 Sephsekla

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Posted 30 June 2017 - 11:56 AM

Garandros whirled around at the panicked shouts, drawing his claymore in a fluid motion.

Nearby Valya was pressing the attack on a creature. Clearly she could handle herself.

He spotted another creature lifting an oar, its intention clear. With a snarl he leapt forward, swinging the heavy blade towards its neck.

----

Elnira shrieked in horror and surprise at the near miss. The creature in front of her was foul. But very interesting. She'd have to make sure she got the opportunity to make some sketches. Maybe someone could help with an autopsy? There was no doubt so much they could learn from -...

She was shaken from her reverie by the clawed hand sweeping towards her, and reflexively the herself to the floor, ignoring Mr Whiskers' furious hisses.
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#13 Burger Warrior

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Posted 30 June 2017 - 12:16 PM

Of course, before Elnira could so much as reply, the boat was abruptly and quite fiercely attacked.

 

Cries of battle and terror pierced the thickening fog, urging Korvarl to his feet. There was no time nor room to bring his shield up - though he marveled at some of the humans wielding two-handed weapons so effectively in their crowded environment - instead simply drawing his one-handed battleaxe and looking for something to decapitate. He very quickly found a target as a humanoid… fish thing attempted to assault Elnira, only for her to miraculously evade it. The lady dwarf quickly hit the deck so she wouldn’t have to deal with that again.

 

Knowing that her luck could only last for so long, though, Korvarl let out an ancient dvergar battlecry as he charged toward and over Elnira, launching himself armored pauldron-first into the monster to try knocking it away… or knocking it down so he could proceed to cut it to bloody, scaly, webby ribbons. Damn the oars and damn the humans, no one was touching his lady!


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#14 Dalton Westmoore

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Posted 30 June 2017 - 06:20 PM

"Aye, that's what some of our maps need. Something named by a bunch of greedy fortune hunters, several of them Imperials."

 

"Drop it,"

 

Agethar was about to reply, when the ship came under attack from strange, humanoid monsters which seemed to be interested in crippling the ship by stealing its oars, leaving them to be mobbed by more that were swarming in the river.

 

The Venator drew his axes and charged a group of four that were throwing oars overboard, only yelling a war-cry in the old northern tongue when he was on top of them, cutting them to crow's-meat:

 

"<Death to Oar-Thieves!>"

 

---

 

Malvolio was caught by surprise as one of the humanoid creatures knocked him over.

 

As the Templar staggered forward, he saw the group of four monster throwing oars overboard, while the one that had attacked him paced in front of them.

 

Seeing one of the Venators (and possibly Valya) charging the group of four, Malvolio unslung his sword while spitting out: "Good move beast, now watch mine."

 

The Templar charged the creature, attempting to cut the thing in half, or at least disable it so it could do no more mischief.

 

---

 

Huo did not see the threat coming out of the water until one of the creatures slashed at his arm, ripping through his robes.

 

The priest staggered back, gasping a single word and he saw the auras of the eerily familiar creatures swarming over the sides of the boat:

 

"Kappa!"

 

As two of the creatures made their way towards the large man - Caiden - the Priest cut in front of him and struck out with the butt of his staff in a certain pattern, attempting to hit nerves in the creatures and paralyze them, or at least knocking them back so the man could have a better chance at killing them.

 



#15 Maverick-Werewolf

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Posted 30 June 2017 - 08:08 PM

Valya charged straight for the monster, swinging her sword - ((Strength Roll - Success)) and it struck with such incredible swiftness and force that the creature hardly had time to see the glint of steel before it was cleaved clean in two. Hot blood sprayed the deck, splattering all over Valya. She felt a rush of adrenaline that heightened her strength and senses still further as she charged for the four creatures dumping oars overboard...

 

And she met one head-on, slashing its head off with incredible force and sending still more fresh spurts of blood in the air. The scent was enough to almost start driving her wild.

 

Allya was lucky in that every other creature was occupied as she reached out to the spirits... ((Spirit Roll - Success)) and they answered...

 

The waters around the ship began to churn as the currents brought the oars back toward the ship. The creatures paused and began to yowl and hiss and spit in confusion and anger as the waters and plants turned against them. They could not see well into the river water, but from what they could gather, something was keeping the monsters from fighting the current and taking the oars back. Perhaps there were plants that had also answered Allya's call.

 

Garandros left himself a bit off-balance wielding such a hefty weapon on the ship, but he had such precision that it cost him little - not that he cared either way ((Strength Roll - Success)), as he ran straight for one of the four creatures who had been dumping oars. He slashed for one, hacking its throat open and sending it scrambling back into the water as it bled out, pouring blood everywhere in its wake.

 

Elnira attempted to duck, but she would not be fast enough - the moment she knew she was about to feel the creature's claws slash her and throw her across the deck, possibly even into the river, Korvarl let out a shout and managed to leap over her ((Agility Roll - Success)) and slam himself as hard as he could into the monster ((Strength Roll - Success)), like a catapult stone.

 

Korvarl felt the creature go down, but it was stronger than it looked. It squirmed underneath him as he raised his axe and managed to land one blow to its chest ((Strength Roll - Success)) before the creature threw him off, but his armor protected him from any lasting damage as he landed in a heap in one corner of the ship, the wind knocked from him as the monster scrambled back to its webbed feet, clutching at the wound...

 

Agethar drew his axes and ran for the monsters tossing the oars, hacking at one ((Strength Roll - Success)) and managing to slice the slimy thing hard enough to stagger it. It yowled, stumbling away from him before abruptly diving straight back into the water and disappearing in a murky cloud of blood.

 

Malvolio lunged for the monster ((Strength Roll - Critical Failure)) - and missed it entirely. The creature leapt on the opportunity, jumping straight onto Malvolio's back and sinking its teeth into his neck, though in its haste, it thankfully missed his throat ((Malvolio - -7 HP)). It clung there, its limbs entangled around him, its teeth in his neck as it refused to let go.

 

Huo - who was apparently making an incorrect assumption that the creatures were kappas - ran for the monster still attacking Caiden, cutting between him and the creature still on its feet. He struck out with the butt of his staff, attempting to hit the creature ((Perception Roll - Narrow Success)), which he did - but only so far as to knock it back a pace or two.

 

Caiden deftly moved around Huo and charged the monster, delivering a swift slash across its chest so deep it left the creature dying on the deck, its blood spilling all over the wood.

 

But at the same instant Caiden attacked, the one he had punched from before was back on its feet. With a shrill cry of anger, it ran for the hulking Venator and then jumped, wrapping all its limbs around him and clinging on as hard as he could, trying to find and bite down on Caiden's neck-- only for Voros to find its neck first as it scrambled over him, practically trying to climb him like a tower.

 

The Venator sank his teeth into the monster's neck so hard it made the creature start yowling in terrified pain, clearly having not expected this retaliation. Yet still it clung, trying to claw through his armor, but though its attacks were desperate, they were strangely weak.

 

That left only four creatures on the deck: one clinging to Malvolio, its teeth in his neck; one clinging to Caiden, his teeth in its neck; one with a wound in its chest from Korvarl; and finally, one poor sod of a beast still trying to toss some oars overboard...

 

But the last one did not last long, as Eydis personally ran it through with her spear and kicked its body into the river. It didn't take long for the vikings to realize that it was almost certainly Allya's magic that had so very suddenly turned the tide of the battle.

 

"Freyja be praised!" Eydis declared, a grin splitting her face as she saw the river lend them their aid. "Finish off what creatures are left - and gather the oars!" she ordered her vikings. "The druid has returned them to us!"

 

 

((Rundown: three creatures left now. One wounded and on its own, one on Malvolio, one on Caiden.))


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#16 Sephsekla

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Posted 01 July 2017 - 01:28 AM

Garandros smiled in grim satisfaction as he watched the creature go down. Time to press the attack.

Voros was nearby, a creature clinging to him, as the two exchanged vicious bites. Sheathing his sword, Garandros ran over. Raising a fist he punched hard at its neck, hoping to break it.
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#17 Sareth

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Posted 01 July 2017 - 11:57 AM

With most of the attackers dead, Valya, amped up on adrenaline, searched for another target. Spotting one of the creatures clinging to the back of the templar, Malvolio, she did not hesitate. Dropping her sword to the deck, she lunged forwards, grabbed the creature around the neck with her powerful hands, and squeezed—seeking to crush the life from it.

 

***

 

Allya, meanwhile, waited until the crew had retrieved the oars before thanking the spirits for their aid.

 

Some of their number had been injured; and she would see to them once the battle was done.


"This means I will not have to regret sending back their envoy short a few limbs."

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#18 Burger Warrior

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Posted 02 July 2017 - 03:28 AM

Korvarl groaned as he was tossed to a corner of the ship, his armor scraping against the deck. Adrenaline pumped through his veins, though old discipline regimens kicked in and helped keep his limbs and extremities steady. The dwarf quickly pushed himself to his feet, whatever pain there was from the inevitable bruising all but shrugged off. The threat stood still, and loomed dangerously over Elnira…

 

Not t’day!

 

With another battlecry, Silvershield surged to his feet and charged back over, brandishing his axe as he moved in to finish the job. This monster was not going to escape if Korvarl had anything to do about it.


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#19 Maverick-Werewolf

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Posted 02 July 2017 - 06:56 AM

Garandros ran over to Caiden, sheathing his sword, and delivered a hard punch straight to the monster's neck - the same neck Caiden's teeth were still in. The blow was so hard it snapped the monster's spine ((Strength Roll - Success)), though it also rattled Caiden's teeth in his skull. Although the monster let out a pathetic squeal before it went limp with almost comical abruptness, Caiden merely grunted as the squirming thing that had been clawing and biting at him fell motionless.

 

He quickly threw it off him, into the river, and growled in apparent disgust as a shiver ran up his spine. He wiped his mouth with one hand while the other briefly rested on his stomach, as if the taste had made him feel sick. Voros looked at Garandros and gave a simple nod before he said only, "Thanks."

 

Meanwhile, Valya dealt with the creature still tangling with Malvolio - she wrapped her hands around its spindly neck and squeezed ((Strength Roll - Critical Success)) so hard it instantly ended the monster's life. It hardly had time to struggle before its neck seemed to crumple in her hands and its head dangled in disgusting awkwardness on its thoroughly broken spine. Malvolio easily threw it off him then, extracting its teeth without causing further damage, but the wound was still bleeding and would require attention.

 

Korvarl handily dispatched the final monster in a hasty and particularly Dwarven fashion ((Strength Roll - Success)), first hacking its legs so hard it stumbled, and then delivering a killing blow right to its neck. It was messy, but effective.

 

In the meantime, Eydis and her vikings had gathered most all of the oars, and they quickly set off again, ready to get away from the creatures still thrashing in the water and resisting the nature spirits that Allya had set upon them. Although the vikings were busy rowing, Eydis hefted one of the mangled monster corpses and threw it overboard, crinkling her nose at the stench.

 

"Gods, I've never smelled such a stench!" she remarked, looking around at the adventurers. "Everyone intact? I have some bandages and ointments, if anyone needs them. You needn't use your own supplies - you'll need those for the long road ahead of you. Luckily the beasts didn't knock them overboard." She indicated toward a crate near the back of the ship.

 

Eydis and the vikings quickly had things returning to normal, although Ingi skulked about near the aforementioned crate of supplies. He at least had some blood on his axe, however, meaning he hadn't sat out the entire fight... He was just sitting out his rowing duties now that one of his fellows was wounded.

 

But Caiden filled that gap, silently heading over to the unmanned oar and starting to row without a word. Eydis looked surprised, but she shrugged and nodded at him in appreciation. Caiden nodded back.


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#20 Sephsekla

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Posted 02 July 2017 - 11:00 AM

Elnira exhaled slowly. What a day!

The corpse of the creature lay nearby and she couldn't wait to examine it. But first..

"Mr Silvershield, are you all right? Thank you so much!"

---

Garandros returned Caiden's nod in silence. Nothing else needed saying. He was more than a little disquieted by his lack of knowledge of these creatures. He'd been doing this for a long time.

Removing his sword from its sheath, he sat down and began to inspect and clean it, and after a moment he attracted Eydis' attention.

"Have you ever seen these creatures before?"
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