Classic Fantasy Ironsworn - Eilwen's Tale
#51
(03-05-2021, 02:31 AM)Jingo Wrote: That would've been quite an interesting scene indeed. I'm curious how your storyline went. Smile

I didn't take it any further than setting up the situation, but the tone I forsaw was more drama/mystery than comedy.
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#52
Episode 33
Make Camp roll + supply


8 = 4[d6]+4


6 = 3[d10]+3[d10] 


Ooo a strong hit and a positive match! She’ll take +1 spirit (now 2/5), and +1 momentum (now 2/10). 


Spirit 2/5
Momentum 2/5


They slept well, passing watches through the night. The rushing of the river made it easy for Eilwen to sleep and when the morrow dawned, her heart felt lighter. After a breakfast of hard bread, cheese, and jerky, they pressed on along their southerly route toward Highcrag and Blackcairn.


Do Valeri and her children come with them? 
(Likely | 8[d10]) Yes


I’ll do the Reach Your Destination move to end my journey.
Progress of 8/10 vs 13 = 10[d10]+3[d10]
A weak hit. “On a weak hit, you arrive, but face an unforeseen hazard or complication. Envision what you find.”


Valeri and her children joined them south. Scratch scampered alongside them, hissing at the children and giving what looked to Eilwen like a snorting laugh when they cried out in fear. Scratch clambered up a small rise and looked below him. Eilwen saw him perhaps fifty feet up, hissing down at her from his perch. She raised one fist, beckoning to him like she used to when hawking. Then with a hiss and cry, Scratch spread his wings and leaped off. 


And fell like a rock. Tumbling and spinning in the wind, at the last seconds, his wings caught the air where he half glided, half crashed, skidding into a tree trunk nearby Aron.


Eilwen clapped with joy and threw Scratch some jerky. Aron grumbled something about pets running amok and increased his marching pace, leading the way.


For two more days they traveled south, and the road cut west, following the bend of the mountain. As they continued west, a darkness seemed to grow upon them. They had left the valley two days back and now moved south along a series of grassy steppes. They were still in the Templed Hills, though elevation continued to drop, and below them to the south, the grass-covered steppes and plateaus dropped away the Hinterlands--a region of hills and steep forests with the occasional mountain peaks rising above the forested swath of land that stretched far far to the south.


The faint road they followed headed west, cutting down in elevation before slowly climbing back up towards Longfalls and then Highcrag. 


At last, they reached Longfalls. Twin streams of water cascaded from a tall cliff to the north, creating a beautiful sunset rainbow. Eilwen felt the mist of it hitting her in the orange light. As they crested a rise, she saw the settlement of Longfalls spread out below her in a grassy bowl with sparse copses of trees dotting the region. Sheep and goats and horses grazed on the grasses. The homes were made of wood in a haphazard array, spitting up smoke from cookfires into the dying light.


Scratch was too big to hide and when she tried to explain that he should stay out of the settlement Aron gave her an i-told-you-so look when Scratch quizzically looked at her but then followed after them into the settlement.


As they approached the settlement, strangers gave them suspicious looks and slammed their doors, shuttering windows. Some of them gasped at the small wyvern who scampered next to Eilwen and men grabbed bows, fitting arrows.


(Scratch and the bad attitude is the obstacle from the weak hit of ending the journey).


“Nice place,” Aron muttered. “I told you your little pet would cause problems.”


“It’s more than that. They’re on edge,” Valeri muttered. “It’s the same feeling I felt near Highcrack, just not as bad. But...”


“What?” Eilwen asked.


“It’s worse than it was five days ago when I was here. I think...I think it’s spreading.”


“Well the sight-blinded little beast isn’t helping,” Aron sputtered a curse when he almost tripped over Scratch who had gotten under foot and was testing the air with his nose. “Idiot beast!” Aron  growled, and kicked at the creature to get him out of his way.


Does he connect?
(50/50 | 6[d10]) Yes, but...


He knocked Scratch aside and gave a satisfied smirk when the little creature sprawled into a food vending cart, but frowned when some food spilled out. Scratch snatched it up and gulped it down. The food owner gave a rude gesture, and in a huff packed up his wares and turned down a different street.


Scratch narrowed his eyes focusing on Aron, his rump moving back and forth, hissing and baring its teeth.


“What? You want to have a go at me?” Aron said and started to pull out his weapon. “I’d welcome it. Come on!” 


Eilwen cursed and stepped between them. “Calm down!” she said. “You’re not like this. You’re getting him riled up.”


“Me? Your little demon lizard started it!”


“Leave it!” she said, grabbing her brother’s arm and shoving him away from Scratch who hopped after Aron, hissing and spitting. “You too!” she snapped at Scratch. He hissed at her and snapped at the air with a click of sharp teeth. Eventually, however, he calmed, though he and Aron kept darting surly looks as they moved through the street.


“Come on. Let’s see if we can find lodging,” she said studying Valeri and her tired children. It hadn’t been an easy hike for the girls, but they had done it with minimal complaining.


“That’s not going to be an easy feat, lass,” Seith said, noting a scowl from a local who shoved a door shut and locked it.


Is there an inn-like building?
(50/50 | 6[d10]) Yes, but...


No room in the inn.


Refugees from Highcrag?
(Likely | 8[d10]) Yes


They approached a set of large buildings with thatched roofs, but some workers bearing truncheons waved them on; scowls on their faces. Besides, they could tell from the crowds that the place was bursting at the seams.


Eilwen spotted a stables on the outskirts and led them to that. It smelled thick of sweaty horses, hay, and manure.


“Could we and this family spend the night in the stables?” Eilwen motioned to Valeri and her children. “We’d be happy to do work in payment.”


Sojourn move roll + heart


3 = 2[d6]+1


12 = 8[d10]+4[d10]


A miss. On a miss, you find no help here. Pay the price. Failures count (8/24).


I’m going to roll on the Pay the price move’s chart.
I rolled an 86. It wastes resources.


“No! Be gone from here!” a balding man of middle years cursed at them and raised his pitch fork and chased them out of the stables. Eilwen backpedaled her hands raised defensively and didn’t see a small beggar child who got under foot. She tripped and fell backwards, her backpack coming open in the fall, small bundles of food spilling out into the street only to be snatched up by other children who quickly disappeared down side streets. Aron and Seith chased after them but only managed to catch one of the little thieves.


(-1 supply ... now 3/5)


“Nights Beneath!” she cursed and quickly gathered up the rest of their supplies. Aron and Seith now kept hands on their weapons and considered their options. The unfriendly settlement limited their options.


They weren’t the only ones turned away and experiencing difficulty; she saw streams of people, despondent looks on haunted, ashen faces being turned aside from other dwellings. Other travelers shunned them, giving signs against evil and slamming doors.


“From Highcrag,” Valeri nodded to one tired family. “I saw travelers with that look.”


Eilwen approached the family, a father and two young children. She didn’t see a woman. The man barely seemed to notice her when she approached. His eyes passed over her wearily.


“Please,” she said. “I’m just trying to understand what happened to Highcrag. I understand you’re from there?”


Sounds like a Gather Information + wits.
7 = 5[d6]+2


11 = 7[d10]+4[d10]


A weak hit. +1 to momentum (now 2/10) 
The information complicates my quest or introduces a new danger.


“Our leader... an Iron Priest,” he spat on the ground. “A man named Delos... he visited one of those pillars, and now foul magics have polluted the land! Animals and people are dying...Everyone on edge and mistrustful. Death stalks the land.” He blinked and scrubbed at his face. “We lost everything.”


“Daddy...I want mommy,” a young girl hung on his hand and he held an even younger one, a small boy, in his arms who squirmed restlessly, crying, “Mama”


“I know,” he muttered. “But mother won’t be coming.” 


“What happened to her?” Elwen asked.


“Death claimed her.”


“How did she die?” she whispered.


But the man just shook his head and swallowed hard, looking at the ground, blinking quickly.


The poor man and children looked as if they didn’t have much food or much of anything by way of supplies. Eilwen swung off her pack and dug out a package of food and some hard bread, handing it over to them. “It’s the least I can do,” she said.


(I’ll subtract one supply for this since it’d make sense that it’d be a sacrifice, Supply is now 2/5)


“Thank you,” the man said, his voice raw with emotion. “Thank you... I don’t know what to say. No one else would help...” his voice trailed off as he knelt down and began doling out the food to his children.


Aron grimaced but didn’t say anything. 


She pursed her lips. Around them, she heard whispered conversations of Highcrag, of Delos the Iron Priest.


“But it’s not the most I can do,” she said.


Then with sudden conviction, she drew out her sword and leaped atop a wagon. 


“What are you doing?” Aron asked, his face alarmed.


She ignored him and felt the breeze catch wisps of hair. “Hearken people of Longfall!” she shouted, the sword point spearing the sky. “Hearken and hear what I, Eilwen of Frostbridge, swear to do!”


The crowd around her had silenced, and she could sense Aron’s eyes on her and she heard him groan.


“By the iron of this blade, I vow that I’ll see Delos of Highcard dealt with and his foul magics that have caused the darkness of Highcard riven asunder!”


An energy thrummed about her, and the very air seemed to shimmer about her. The man she’d been talking to looked at her, his eyes wide with awe or fear. He fell to his knees.


Swear an Iron vow. I think it’s a Troublesome vow since it’s rather straightforward: travel to Highcrag and confront Delos and smack him upside the head. Though there’s likely more to it than that.


5 = 4[d6]+1


12 = 5[d10]+7[d10]


Great... a miss. (Miss count now 9/24) 
You face a significant obstacle before you can begin your quest. Envision what stands in your way (Ask the Oracle if unsure), and choose 1:
  • [i]You press on, suffer -2 momentum and do what you must to overcome this obstacle. (Momentum now 0/10)[/i]
  • [i]You give up: Forsake your vow.[/i]

Is the obstacle Aron?
(50/50 | 5[d10]) No, but...


No, but he’s not happy about it. 


Is it Scratch?
(50/50 | 5[d10]) No, but...
No, but the people don’t like the little beast causing havok in their settlement.


“What in the Seven Pits was that about!” Aron hissed, grabbing her arm, but he couldn’t stop the binding effect of the sworn vow. He felt the warmth traveling from the iron into her hand and into his own. He snatched his hand back as if burned, his flashing eyes shifting to her sword then back to lock onto her own.


“Doing what must be done,” she raised her chin, the sword now point-down on the wagon. “I’ll see to this Delos in Highcrag.”


“But you--” 


His voice was cut off by a sudden shout. A large muscled man, dressed in strange clothes held an equally large two-handed iron mace, the heavy head of the weapon rested in the dirt. A dark hood from his cloak cast his face into shadow. The locals gave him a wide berth, and a clearing in the crowd formed around him. Strange streamers of gray cloth were sown into the sleeves of his cloak and snapped and fluttered in the breeze.


“You have spoken violence against Delos the High One!” he muttered darkly, a harsh accent scraped the air.


Any others like him?
(50/50 | 10[d10]) Yes, and...


Great...


Three others, similarly dressed, but smaller with more slender builds and bearing spears pushed through the crowd to stand behind him.


Is the crowd hostile towards these lesser acolytes?
(50/50 | 2[d10]) No


“The price for such is...death,” he said in a low gravelly voice and strode forward.
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#53
Episode 34 
The three warriors with spears would be troublesome vs Eilwen and her companions. With the addition of the big man with the mace, I’ll say this encounter is elevated to Dangerous. Dangerous does 2 damage per harm.


Dangerous Fight - Progress 0/10


Enter the Fray -- She’s facing off against her foe -- rolling + heart -- Her heart stat is lame and she’s out of momentum. Not good.


4 = 3[d6]+1


13 = 3[d10]+10[d10]


A weak hit. I can choose to either take 2 momentum and lose initiative or I can take the initiative. I’m tempted to take the momentum, because mechanically it’s what gives her more Health essentially (at least when she makes her Endure Harm move). But then again, the best defence is also a strong offence. Uggg. Decisions. Decisions. 
Yeah, I’ll take the 2 momentum (2/10 now) and hopefully I can regain momentum on the defence.


The large warrior strode forward, lifted the mace off the ground and strode forward. The three warriors with the spears also moved forward behind him. Eilwen let her pack fall and drew her dagger in her off hand and prepared to engage the large warrior. Aron muttering curses under his breath dropped his pack and yanked out his shield and axe, rushing the spearmen. Seith did the same, drawing his long knife and joining Aron.


The large man with the mace, grunted and charged at Eilwen as she stood atop the wagon. The mace crashed towards her in a long arc, and she attempted to dodge the blow and get in close with the man.


Clash move - She gets +1 for iron, and +2 for her Duelist Talent: “When you Strike or Clash, you may add +2. If you do (decide before rolling), inflict +1 harm on a strong hit and count a weak hit as a miss.”


Roll high! Roll high!


9 = 6[d6]+3


12 = 5[d10]+7[d10]


Yes! A strong hit. She can either 
  • [i]Bolster and take 1 momentum. Or [/i]
  • [i]Find an opening and inflict +1 harm. [/i]

She gives 2 harm automatically for using a dangerous weapon and she’ll take the +1 harm from the Clash move and the extra harm from Duelist... That’s a total of 4 harm which translates to 8/10 progress boxes vs a Dangerous encounter. Nice!


The heavy mace whooshed towards her in a wild swing, but she wasn’t there. The heavy weapon slammed into the wagon, easily smashing through the wood and sending splinters spraying. 


Eilwen’s leap from the wagon carried her near the man. Hitting the ground, she drew her serrated edge blade across the big man’s thigh in a wicked slash, causing him to scream in pain and stumble in a spray of blood.


At the same time, Aron and Seith rushed to engage the three spearmen. Aron turned a spear thrust with his shield and drove his knee up hard into the man’s groin. The man gasped and doubled over. Aron brought his axe down onto the man’s back, dropping him.


Seith had judged the timing of the spear thrust and managed to shove the haft aside with his forearm. He then found an opening and plunged his long knife into the chest of the second spearman. 


“Eilwen!” Aron shouted. 


She spun just in time and parried a spear thrust from the third spearman. Then she slashed out with her dagger, scoring a painful gash down the man’s face, momentarily blinding him.


8 boxes is pretty good and coming off a strong hit, she’ll to End the Fight here. 
Might be a bad idea. We’ll see...
10 = 6[d10]+4[d10]


The large man cursed and struggled to his feet, blood streaming down his thigh. She rushed at him with a cry as he swung the mace in a massive overhand swing. She moved more quickly than he, and the full length of her blade drove through the man’s stomach, its wicked serrated edge coming out his back.


Aron and Seith quickly handled the other spearman, double-teaming him, and after a few blows, he too lay still in the dirt.


“Delos will make your soul a plaything for the Heralds!” the large man grunted with three feet of steel inside of him; bloody spittle sprayed into her face and he gave a bloody grin.


She didn’t say anything, just turned and wrenched her blade free, severing his spinal column. The man twitched and fell over in a groan.


(For this next part, I’ll share the oracle rolls later)


A hush fell over the scene as a thick shadow, like some inky stretchy creature of tar, oozed across the ground out of the bodies of the fallen. It split into globules of blackness that stretched through the dirt towards the crowd. The crowd moved back as one, muttering, cursing, and turning to run. 


Eilwen and her companions also began to back away. “What’s happening?” Eilwen said.


“It’s as I said... bad magic...” Valeri breathed, her face white, and she shoved her gasping daughters behind her. “Keep moving!”


Suddenly, a shadow struck a random person in the crowd, an old woman, a few feet away. It moved serpent-like and the woman fell to the ground with a cry. Eilwen caught a glimpse of some shadow entering into the woman. For a moment, the older woman moaned and lay twitching on the ground. 


Then after a few moments, she lay still. 


Other attacks happened in like manner, and soon a half dozen or so others from the crowd lay moaning and twitching in the dirt.


“This is not good,” Seith said. 


Screaming in fear, the crowd fled.


“We need to leave!” Aron muttered, backing away.


Then with a grunt the older woman rose to her feet, and like a puppet on invisible strings, spun around with jerky movements to face Eilwen. The woman’s eyes had filled with dark inky blackness--no whites at all were visible. It looked as if tar swam in their depths. 


Then the old woman spoke in a whispery dark voice: “Blood... blood... death so cold to touch and feed the fresh flesh torn and bright the ruby red gems liquid life to lips come and let us drink...”


The woman gave a ragged breath and then took a halting step towards Eilwen and her companions, hand outstretched, mouth open wide in a maniacal leer.


“This is Delos’s work!” Eilwen said. “We must get to Highcrag and stop him. Grab what you can and follow me!”


Thankfully, the movements of the possessed were slow and halting. Keeping away from the woman, they grabbed their packs, and took their flight from Longfell.


Oracle rolls after the fight:
How does the crowd react? Jubilant?
(Likely | 3[d10]) No


What...? Grrr. Well that’s not good. 


Do they become hostile towards Eilwen and her friends?
(50/50 | 8[d10]) Yes


Hmm. Doesn’t really make sense but okay. 


Are there more acolytes in the settlement of Longfall?
(50/50 | 4[d10]) No


Interesting.... 


The magic at play that came from Highcrag must be clouding the crowd’s judgement surely? 
(Likely | 10[d10]) Yes, and...


Not just clouding but actively corrupting... and... spreading.


---


Dusk had given way to night, and after moving some distance to the west, and climbing higher in elevation, they slowed to a halt and looked down upon Longfalls. They sat gasping, hiding behind a small copse of trees. Down below them to the distance, a bell began to toll.


“That didn’t go well,” Seith muttered, leaning against a tree trunk.


“What will happen to them mother?” Telewyn asked.


Valerie and her daughters sat in the grass and watched the settlement. Torches flared in the night, and it looked like some of the homes had been fired, as great flames stretched to the sky. Eilwen couldn’t get the vision of the twitching human puppets out of her mind.


“Hush daughter,” Valeri said. “Don’t talk about it. Just rest.”


“But mother, are we safe? Will they come for us too? I saw the darkness, and it--”


“Telewyn, we are safe here. Be at peace,” Valeri drew Telewyn’s, Teleri, and Lyrie into an embrace, and after some time her children hushed. 


Seith sat down next to Valerie and her girls and began telling a tale of the mighty hunter, Gadwyn the Brave, who road a giant whale across the night sky hunting the moon, but the stars warned of Gadwyns coming and the moon hid in blackness for a time, and only once every several days when the stars say it is safe, she comes out to float in the black deep.


Eilwen sat on a log and scratched the ridges of Scratch’s head. He leaned into her ministrations, uttering a guttural purring-like sound.


Aron stalked back and forth, arms folded. Then he strode up to Eilwen.


“Sister,” he said, his voice heavy with weary accusation. “What did you do?”


“Me? Nothing! I tried to help them.”


“Help them...” he raked a hand through his hair and stabbed a finger down at Longfalls where orange flames consumed some homes. “Nights Beneath! You call that helping them? Look what you unleashed!”


“You think I caused that? I had nothing to do with it!” 


“Nothing to do with--you slew those men and look what happened!”


“You can’t put this on me, Aron! Remember Belvin at Frostbridge? He had one of these spirits tied to him too or do you think I caused that?”


He hesitated. “Well...no... I don’t know. But what of mother’s magic? That shadow magic you said she taught you. I’ve seen you use it. Remember when we escaped the ruined elven city under the mountain? You called the shadows and...well, what happened tonight seemed much like that.”


“That’s different,” Eilwen said. “This thing Delos is doing is... different. An abomination. The shadows I call mask sight and sound. That’s it. They don’t possess others. It’s--I know there are some things that are similar, but trust me, it’s nothing like what I do.”


“You better be right,” he muttered and an uneasy silence fell. For a while they listened to Seith, Valerie, and the children laughing quietly in the dark.


“And now you will go and confront Delos?”


“It must be done.”


“You’ll be risking everything we’re working towards, you know,” he said quietly.


“Yes, but you have to see that this is far more important! What if this foulness keeps spreading like some damnable plague? What of father and Frostbridge and all the other settlements and circles in these lands? It’s spread to one settlement already,” she said. Then she dropped her voice even further. “It has to be stopped! If not, and all are twisted in shadow and darkness, will there be anything left to rule?”


“You think you can stop it?”


She shrugged. “I might. There’s something in those iron pillars. I don’t know what it is, but mother may have known. I have to at least try.”


They looked down at Longfalls for a long time, and then Aron finally sighed. “Perhaps you’re right.”


For a while, the wind whispered secrets in the shadowed trees. The night was clear, and above Longfalls the night sky began to peep forth with stars but the moon remained hidden, hiding from Gadwyn no doubt.


What of them?” Aron nodded to Valeri and her daughters. “We can’t take them to Highcrag.”


She shook her head. “No. But we can give them some supplies and have them hide here for a couple of days, perhaps with Seith. Then you and I can see to Delos.”


Aron’s face was unreadable in the darkness, but she caught his resigned nod. “Very well. Let’s get it over with.”


Eilwen’s Stats:
Iron 1, Wits 2, Edge 2, Shadow 3, Heart 1
Health 5/5
Supply 2/5
Spirit 1/5
Momentum 2/10

Also, I started this google sheet a weeks ago that I created for me to maintain info about characters, quests etc. for this adventure. It includes notable characters, her Iron Vow statuses, stats, current statuses, a map with currently visited explored places, etc. Her statuses are for the current adventure I'm playing, not necessarily the latest that I post here, so you may find some spoilers if you visit. But you might be interested in the map there:
Ironsworn Adventure - Notes 
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#54
Episode 35
They hid in the copse of trees that night. In the morning, Eilwen and Aron joined the others and explained her plan as she gathered up her gear and belted on her sword.


“Aron and I must stop Delos if we can,” Eilwen said. “Valerie, I’ll leave some supplies with you, and if everyone is in agreement, I think it would be wise if Seith stayed with you until we return.”


She loses one supply. (Now 1/5)


Is Seith willing to stay with Valeri and her children?
(Likely | 10[d10]) Yes, and...


Sounds like Seith has a genuine fondness for the children and maybe even to Valeri? She’s married of course but perhaps Valeri is interested in a romantic relationship with Seith?
(50/50 | 1[d10]) No, and...


“Aye lass. I’ll stay with them and help them until you and Aron return.” Seith said, and he tousled little Lyrie’s blond hair. The little girl smiled up at him, and to everyone’s surprise reached out and took his hand. It seemed a bond had developed between him and the children during last night’s story hour. Not only that, but Eilwen suspected he might even have feelings for Valeri. She had caught him staring after the other woman.


“I would welcome master Seith’s aid, until I can be reunited with my husband,” Valeri said with a polite smile to the man. Eilwen caught the subtle emphasis on the last word.


Seith’s mouth tightened slightly, but he nodded. “I’ll see that they’re looked after, you have my word.”


Eilwen and Aron said their goodbyes, gathered their gear, and set out towards Highcrag not quite a day’s journey to the west. Scratch followed behind, sometimes running and hopping, sometimes flapping his wings and flying for short distances.


Since the distance between Highcrag and Longfalls is less than a day, and the directions are rather clear, I won’t use the standard “Undertake Journey” move. I’ll instead just ask the oracle how it goes?


Any troubles in the journey?
(50/50 | 7[d10]) Yes


Great... What?
73 = 73[d100]
Deliver


44 = 44[d100]
Faction


Ooo. It sounds like some scouts from Uzak are on the road... 
How many:
1 = 1[d4]


On horse?
(50/50 | 4[d10]) No


Eilwen and Aron traveled most of the day. The sun had disappeared behind slate-gray clouds that threatened rain. At midday, the road formed a t-like intersection, one path stretching away to the north towards the Templed Hills and beyond them stretched the misty heights of the Veiled peaks nearly lost in mist and distance. 


Eilwen and Aron had just finished a short lunch by a fast-moving stream, when they heard the sound of something moving quietly through the rocks and trees that ran along the south-flowing river that tumbled and splashed over rock and boulder out of the mouth of a valley. A northern track of mountain road stretched up into the templed hills leading towards the settlements owned by Uzak, the route the army of Uzak would be taking.


With that thought hitting them, they froze, staring into the brush. Quietly they drew their weapons. Scratch noticed the motion and he crawled under a log, his snout poking out.


Do they get a good look at the scout?
(50/50 | 1[d10]) No, and...


Eilwen and Aron both slid down low behind a boulder trying to remain unseen.


Face Danger + Shadow
4 = 1[d6]+3


14 = 6[d10]+8[d10]


A miss... (Failure count 10/24)


She looked at Aron and they both listened. He shook his head. With the gurgle of the stream and the wind cutting down out of the valley they couldn’t hear much else.


Are they attacked?
(50/50 | 8[d10]) Yes


By just the one scout?
(50/50 | 1[d10]) No, and...


He must’ve had others nearby and silently pointed out Aron and Eilwen’s location. 


Are there more than 4 scouts?
(Unlikely | 5[d10]) No


More than 3?
(Somewhat Unlikely | 3[d10]) No


Three warrior scouts attack, armed with short bows, spears, and knives. This is a Dangerous encounter and our intrepid heroes are surprised. Had they outnumbered us 2 to 1 or something, it would have been set to Formidable encounter.


Fight Progress 0/10


Enter the Fray + wits
6 = 4[d6]+2
7 = 6[d10]+1[d10]


A weak hit... (Momentum is 2/10) -- She can bolster her position and get 2 momentum or take initiative.

I’ll take initiative.


The hair on the back of Eilwen’s neck rose, and a sixth sense caused her to move. She rolled as a flash of something dark clattered off the rocks. An arrow! The shot had come from behind them. She and Aron spun and they caught a glimpse of a man in mottled green clothes ducking behind a boulder for cover. 


Aron pulled on his shield and growled. “Do you see any others?”


Settling her back to the boulder they had hid behind, she placed an arrow into her bow, she shook her head. “No... but there might be more. Watch my flank. I’ll handle this one.”
Aron nodded and she raised her bow and drew and airmed, feeling the strain in her arms.


Secure an advantage with aiming -- from her Archer talent she can take a plus 1 with this:
It’s + edge + 1, so a +3 total 


8 = 5[d6]+3


10 = 9[d10]+1[d10]


A weak hit... +1 momentum (now 3/10)


But soon the warrior peered around the boulder again for another shot. She let the arrow fly.


Strike + Edge
5 = 3[d6]+2


9 = 7[d10]+2[d10]


A weak hit. +1 harm.
Deadly weapon gives 2 harm already -- that’s 3 harm, so six progress boxes.


The arrow took the man in the throat and he fell with a gurgle, just as a cry came from her right. She spun. Aron saw it too. A man with a spear in two hands had jumped atop the boulder they were behind and thrust it down at him.


Does Aron block the blow? 
I’ll say he was watching her flank, so it’s Likely he’d spot something. But it came from the boulder above them, not exactly what he expected ... so will say SL. 
(Somewhat Likely | 8[d10]) Yes


“Look out!” he shouted and raised his shield blocking the blow. 


A third man rushed at her with another spear. With speed born of fear, she hastily drew another arrow at point blank range as he came and loosed.


Clash + edge to shoot an advancing foe.
8 = 6[d6]+2


10 = 5[d10]+5[d10]


A strong hit and match! 
On a strong hit, inflict your harm and choose one. You have initiative. 
You bolster your position and take +1 momentum.
You find an opening. Inflict +1 harm.


She’ll take the momentum since the two harm she gives from her weapon is four more boxes and gives her 10/10 progress on the fight already. (Momentum is now 4/10).


End the Fight move - 10 progress vs...
5 = 4[d10]+1[d10]


Her arrow flashed out and took the charging warrior in the chest. The force of the blow buried the shaft nearly up to its fletchings, the point sticking through his back. He fell back, clutching the shaft and then lay still.


She spun to help Aron who had blocked another spear thrust from the man on his shield and then with a warcry he cut through the shins of the man on the boulder with his axe, as if hewing wood.


The warrior screamed, weapons falling and rolling on the ground, trying to clutch at his ruined legs, blood pooling around his hands.


Aron pressed his knee on the man’s chest and raised his axe. The man froze, groaning in pain, his face white from loss of blood.


“Who are you?”


“Elar,” the man gasped and moaned, thrashing from the pain.


“Not that. Who sent you and your friends?”


Does he answer?
(Somewhat Likely | 5[d10]) Yes, but...


“Uzak,” he gasped from the pain and the pressure on his chest. “Wolf Fang clan.”


“Are there more of you? Answer me!”


But the man didn’t have a chance to answer. The pain was too much and with a groan his eyes rolled up in his head and his head lolled to the side. 


“Must be an advanced party,” Eilwen said. “There might be more of them. Quickly! Look for anything that might be useful, and then we need to leave!”


With a frown, Eilwen took out her dagger and finished the man with a thrust to his chest. He gave a shudder, a final gasp, and then lay still.


Aron raised an eyebrow.


Eilwen withdrew the blade, wiped it clean on some nearby grass and sheathed it. It was distasteful, but it had to be done. “If he’s alone, he’d bleed out anyway, and so this was a mercy. If he’s not alone, he’d talk, and so this was prevention.”


Aron looked at her a moment, then nodded slowly and without a word he went about looking for any useful supplies. Scratch finally surfaced, peering about as if expecting more danger.


Resupply roll + wits
7 = 5[d6]+2


5 = 3[d10]+2[d10]


Nice! A strong hit. Take +2 supply (now 3/5)


Eilwen took a couple of daggers from the fallen men and refilled her arrow supply from their quivers. Aron also took a second dagger.


And this.... from the match from before:


They followed the men’s tracks upstream a few hundred yards. There they found three saddled horses tied to a tree. Checking their saddlebags, they found some dried fruit and meat.


They took the three horses and galloped away toward Highcrag.
Reply
#55
Episode 36
Eilwen decided that Highcrag had been aptly named. The road that led to the settlement wound its way up and up through large hills. As they topped a grass-covered hill, she reigned in her horse and pointed down across a valley of rolling hills to some mountains in the distance. Aron pulled up his horse short and joined her. 


“There. Highcrag,” she said.


She saw that a hearty folk had, at one time, built a somewhat large collection of stone houses with wooden roofs atop a somewhat flat outcropping of craggy rock that jutted and flared out from one of the mountains that continued to rise above it to the west. The road led to a narrow saddle that in turn led to the outcropping of rock.


“Defensible place,” Aron grunted, shielding his eyes with a hand from the dying sun. “A single approachable route across that narrow saddle there. Raiders would have a hard time posing a threat to the homes there.”


Eilwen nodded and pulled her cloak about her though it wasn’t yet late afternoon. The sun had begun to descend past the rim of the mountains and now, like some dark and malevolent hand that began to creep across the land, the shadows from the surrounding peaks began to lengthen.


Scratch had found a boulder near the edge of the hill, and he leaped off of it, gliding in a slow circle, banking and then suddenly folding his wings, falling and then flaring the wings out again. He appeared to be practicing. Testing his abilities at flight. He flapped his wings and rose, returning to their hill. Then he settled on the boulder and looked down at her imperiously.


“We better keep moving. I’d like to arrive well and truly before nightfall,” she said.


Aron nodded and they set off across the hills. As they rode, she continued to study Highcrag.


Does she see any movement?
(50/50 | 4[d10]) No


The place looked dead. Perhaps all who had been able to flee the magical desolation already had. She couldn’t see any cooking fires. But, admittedly, as they drew closer and the mountain rose up above her, her angle of surveillance and ability to see into Highcrag proper diminished. She could only study the dwelling built near the edge of the crags and cliffs.


They made their way up the winding road that was wide enough for perhaps two wagons abreast. It rose in serpentine switchbacks above them.  Following it, they finally made it to the top, the horses breathing heavily from the ride.


The ground had grown rockier as they had climbed, and the clatter of their horses’ hooves on the rocks juxtaposed and called attention to the gloomy silence that surrounded the place.


They could now see across the narrow saddle into Highcrag itself. The vantage was better and they could make out some winding streets surrounded by stone houses, some of them crumbling to ruin.


The road atop the saddle was wide enough for perhaps a single large wagon.


Is there a wall and a gate?
(50/50 | 7[d10]) Yes


At the other end of the saddle a wall of stone only on that one side permitted entrance through a single gate...


Is the gate broken?
(50/50 | 8[d10]) Yes


...a gate that lay in ruins.


Does it look like it was hit by some large force
(50/50 | 10[d10]) Yes, and...


They approached cautiously moving slowly across the saddle. As they approached, they saw wooden splinters from the gate sprawled across the stone road. The walls of those buildings closest to the gate looked as if they had been shoved inwards by some massive invisible hand.


Does it appear that whatever smashed the gate originated from outside the settlement?
(50/50 | 8[d10]) Yes


They passed through the gate and she saw more splinters inside the settlement. Whatever had caused this, it came from outside the settlement.


“What caused this devastation?” Aron asked, nudging aside a fallon piece of masonry with his foot. “A bear? Like the great silverback at Frostbridge we fought?”


“I... don’t think so,” she said slowly. “Those walls look like something smashed through them here. But--”


“You mean, like lightning maybe?”


Any blackened stone or something from a lightning or other strike?
(50/50 | 2[d10]) No


“I’ve never seen lightning smash stone like this,” Elwen said. “Besides, there’s no scorch or soot marks from either lightning or flame.”


They dismounted, tying their mounts to a hitching post, and with weapons drawn began their investigation.


Do they see any dead bodies in the streets?
(50/50 | 4[d10]) No


“I don’t like it,” Aron said. “Weren’t there supposed to be dead bodies everywhere? Where are all the fallen?”


“Maybe they cleaned them up or burned them on some funeral pyre,” she said.


“Who? There’s no one here,” Aron asked.


He was right. They didn’t see anyone in the streets. Near the center of town, they saw some larger buildings that rose rather precariously above the other surrounding buildings, some two or even three stories high.


“Lets try those,” she said.


They moved down the street towards the center of town.


Is Delos waiting for them?
(50/50 | 3[d10]) No


Are there other buildings in the town that look like they were also damaged by the force at the gate?
(50/50 | 7[d10]) Yes


More devastation awaited them as they proceeded towards the center of the town. More buildings had walls shoved inwards and some collapsed roofs, some of the larger buildings too had taken the brunt of some mammoth force.


“Let’s look around some. But let’s not get separated,” Eilwen said.


Gather Information + wits
8 = 6[d6]+2


14 = 7[d10]+7[d10]


A strong hit ooo and a match!
On a strong hit, you discover something helpful and specific. The path you must follow or action you must take to make progress is made clear. Envision what you learn, and take +2 momentum 
(Momentum is now 4/10).



Eilwen and Aron entered the large building and soon after they’re eyes adjusted to the interior gloom.


Do they see any dead bodies
(Somewhat Unlikely | 6[d10]) No, but...


They didn’t see any bodies, but there were signs of a struggle. Eilwen noticed some overturned chairs, a broken table, bloodied weapons and spilled wax from an overturned candelabra. Some parchment scrolls tied with leather bands and others untied lay scattered and in rumpled heaps about the ruined table. They listened but didn’t hear the sounds of any threats.


“I’ll look about,” Aron said and then strode off to look into the other rooms on this level.


She nodded, kneeling and searching the floor amids the broken furniture. She picked up the parchment scrolls, untie them and began to read.


Does Aron find anything interesting?
(Somewhat Unlikely | 10[d10]) Yes, and...


After a few minutes, Aron returned. He came back to the main room and shook his head. “No one here, but you might find this interesting.”


(MAG...)


(Wood door, compass, reforged scimitar, house on fire, battery power zap, some disc like thing (battery?), cards, crown above a heart, axe. I’ll use the compass and crown/heart.)


Aron pulled out a curious device with runes etched across its surface, a flat iron disc roughly the size of his fist with a hole through the center. “Sister,” he frowned. “I found something...I think you ought to see it.”


“One moment,” Eilwen said. “Look at this,” she spread out a fresh parchment that had fallen amidst the ravaged table. “I...can read it. It was written by Delos.”


“What does it say?”


Elwen cleared her throat and began to read:


“‘The council tried to stop me! Idiots! Don’t they know that when He speaks, I obey. One does not question the stirrings of the Divine. One acts. 


‘More townsfolk continue to flee, fearing the powers that He blesses us with. What is there to fear? After all, the shades help us become our true selves. It is no illness, but a blessing. But they cannot see it!’”


“He’s mad if he thinks that,” Aron said. “Doesn’t he know what it’s going to do Longfalls! To what it did here?”


In the silence of a dead town they only heard the wind.


Eilwen scanned ahead and frowned. “I certainly doesn’t see it that way. Listen to this. “‘Everything that I’ve done,” she read, “‘ I’ve done for the good of Highcrag! But they won’t see it! Don’t they know that even if we fall, we rise again to a second life, able to hear His voice, to serve Him further? Such sacrifices only make us stronger! Our spirits, more pure. And purity of purpose is what we need.’”


“What is he rambling about?” Aron grumbled. “He is mad!”


The wind began to pick up outside, blasting the rock with its temperamental breath. 


Eilwen continued reading:
“‘They blame everything on me! But they cannot stop His will though they try. Thomlyn, ever faithful servant that he is, warned me that a faction acts against me. They have convinced the others that I am a threat instead of a bringer of enlightenment! The fools shut the gates against me, preventing me from leaving! 


“The next day, he continues here,” Eilwen said pointing at the bottom of the parchment. She picked up reading again. “‘They forbade me from ever visiting the Sacred Pillar again. Bah! If they think it is evil, then it is they who are misguided, too lost in their own fear to see the truth! They seek to imprison me until the council can hold a trial. There’s no time for that! I feel the stirrings within me. He calls and I must act. I have imbued the stone with His life and we’ll see if mere wood and stone will stop me now!


Does the parchment say what happened to the dead townsfolk?
(50/50 | 6[d10]) Yes, but...


“‘The fallen now follow Him. He guides their path now.”


“I fear that I am too proud. I must be humble. Humility and purity, that’s what I need. For if I’m to bring by dear Serahl back, I’ll need a pure heart, but set with iron purpose. Let the world know that if I am successful, they’ll praise my name, and I’ll usher in a golden age of peace, for death will hold meaning no longer! And surely I will be successful, for He is ever with me.’”


“That’s the end,” Eilwen said, lowering the parchment.


“This Delos must’ve gone to his sacred pillar,” Aron said, his mouth twisting into a frown. “But where is it?”


She knelt amidst the rubble and spilled sheets of parchment, and drew out a worn-looking sheet larger than the others. It looked much older than the sheets containing Delo’s ravings. Her eyes quickly passed over it. It appeared to be a crude map. 


She spread the map on the floor and saw a rough depiction of the mountain valley they were in and Highcrag. Her finger moved up the map north, swinging around north across the large meadow they were in. A pass between two large mountains further to the northwest led up to another higher meadow, and in the center of the meadow, atop some sort of hill was a spike. There, drawn above the spike, was a rune all too familiar to her now, its twisting lines forming a skaed triangle.


“I think it’s here,” she said, tracing the spike-like symbol on the map and looking up at her brother, her face serious.


“Then that’s where we go,” he said with a grim nod, hand on his axe’s haft. “But first, this,” he passed her the strange looking disk.


She took the strange device and studied it.


Does she feel anything?
(50/50 | 1[d10]) No, and...


It felt dead. Like a piece of iron that was missing its soul. She gave a frown as her finger brushed across its surface. “I wonder what its purpose is,” she mused.


Aron shrugged. “Maybe it’s nothing. Just some odd art. It just looked...unusual.”


“No, I think you’re right. These fine runes here,” she shook her head, moving her finger over them.


Are they runes she can read?
(50/50 | 2[d10]) No


“They’re different from the runes mother taught me. The script is more flowing.”


“Indeed,” Aron nodded. “We’ve seen runes like this before. Remember? In Grimstone.”


She nodded, thinking of the fine elven figurines she bore and the similar looking script around their bases. “Of elvish make then, most likely. I’m sure they mean something, but we’d need to find someone who understood their script.” 


“A later task for a distant day,” her brother said, looking out the window. “We’d best move out,” he added with a dour look as he saw the shadows creep across the yellow stalks of the meadow far below. “I don’t relish spending the night here.”


She gathered up the map to the iron pillar, slipping it into her pack. They stepped onto the streets of the lonely and abandoned Highcrag.
Reply
#56
Thanks for sharing your Google Doc. It’s interesting to see how others keep track of their worlds.  I have all my solo writings, tables, info, etc. on Google Drive as well so I can access it anywhere, anytime I want to play. For my first adventure, I used a document similar to yours to keep track of all my character/world/plot data.  However, even using bookmarks I found I was doing a lot of scrolling and searching to find exactly what I was looking for. What I really wanted was a database similar to what a writer might use to plan and track their novels. I looked at several things and finally landed on something called TiddlyWiki.

It might be something you want to consider. I will put a link at the end of this post to download a sample of my Wiki from my Thieves adventure. Tiddly is just what it sounds like, a customizable wiki. The good thing about it is that all the information is contained in a single html file so it’s easily portable. Also, using a plug-in, the wiki file can be hosted in an online location, such as Google Drive, so you can access it anywhere.

The system is based on a “card” for each topic or item you want to track. You can add tags to each card for easy sorting or retrieval and you can create links for words and terms in your cards that will reference and retrieve other cards when clicked. The program is very versatile right out of the box, but is highly customizable so you can make it look how you want and automate a lot of functions. (For example, the first thing you should do is set up the Table of Contents feature that organizes all your cards under their appropriate heading in a collapsible list for easy navigation. Why this isn't already programmed in the base file is a mystery to me.) If you choose to customize it does take some time and research to learn how to do so, and the instructions/tutorials on the program's site aren’t always the easiest to follow, but there are several example tiddlywiki’s (including every page on the program's site) that can be referenced to see how things are done. Personally, I spent approximately 2 hrs. total over several sessions learning how to customize it to my liking but the time was worth it for me.

As always, my recommendation is to do or use the tools that work best for you, but if you want to check TiddyWiki out I’ve added some links below. Oh yeah, the program is open source and completely free and I get no kickbacks or reward for recommending it. I’m just passing along something I’ve found useful.

Tiddly Wiki’s Site - https://tiddlywiki.com/

Sample of one of my wikis (I think you will need to download it as an HTML file and open on your machine for it to work. The button should be in the upper right-hand corner of the page the link opens.) - 
https://drive.google.com/file/d/1NsiSyrk...sp=sharing
Reply
#57
Cool! Thanks Teviko. I'll consider that if Google Docs becomes unwieldy for me.
Reply
#58
Episode 37 
Gathering their horses, they decided to move out directly, not checking for supplies as their quarry already had a head start. Eilwen, like Aron, felt only all too eager to leave Highcrag and its mysteries behind them. She didn’t relish the thought of being inside Highcrag at night either. It was late afternoon when they reached the bottom of the switchbacks, they turned their horses northwest and galloped across the meadow.


Highcrag clung on its flattened outcropping, in deep shadow to their left as they slowly passed by the outcropping and moved northwest across the meadow.


I’ll do another Undertake A Journey move, rank Troublesome.
Roll + wits


4 = 2[d6]+2


7 = 5[d10]+2[d10]
A miss... well, I’m going to burn my 4 momentum, to wipe out the 2 and turn this into a weak hit. They make progress (now 3/10) and remove one supply (now 2/5). Momentum resets to 2. 


After an hour of hard riding, they came to the entrance to the northwest pass and left the expanse of grassy meadow behind them. The trail turned upward, and the foothills around them were topped with pines and boulders as they hugged the bases of cliffs and bluffs that stretched tower-like to the cloud-ridden sky. They pressed their horses onward, but at a slower pace, climbing up through the foothills.


Undertake A Journey move
Roll + wits


8 = 6[d6]+2


15 = 8[d10]+7[d10]


Another weak hit. Progress now 6/10
Remove one supply (now 1/5)


The hours passed as they continued their journey up the pass. They stopped on a large wide ledge that jutted out above the grassy meadow far far below. A stream moved parallel to the trail they followed, and from the small rivulet of water, they filled their water skins and watered the horses. The horses flanks, wet with perspiration, heaved in and out, and they eagerly dipped their heads into the stream.


“We’d best stop here,” Eilwen said. “We’ve pushed our mounts hard and they’ve done well by us.” She patted the neck of her horse as it eagerly sucked at the water. 


Aron nodded and began setting up camp.


As he did so, Scratch flew into camp and half landed, half careened into the horses at the stream. The beasts, spooked by the ungainly flying creature, fled in three different directions. 


“The horses!” Aron shouted.


He and Eilwen both ran to head them off. They managed to catch two of them, but one of the horses bounded away up the trail, rations in it’s saddle bags.


(The above loss of supplies)


“Idiot beast!” Aron groaned. “Now we’ve lost a mount and some supplies.”


“It’ll turn up, I’m sure brother. Don’t be so hard on him. Look, he’s tired!”


Scratch, looked up at Eilwen with wide innocent-looking eyes as she scratched behind its head ridges.


“Oh please, he’s like a hound pup begging for attention! He’s playing you for a fool, sister.”


She smiled down at him and even gave him some jerky.


Aron threw his hands to the sky and stomped away, muttering to himself and shaking his head.


Scratched hissed at him and then looked up at her. “Don’t worry,” she said to the wyvern, continuing to scratch his head and neck. “Someday, he’ll appreciate you.”


She smiled after her brother who looked at her, grimaced and stalked away, sitting down on the ledge, his back to them, his legs dangling over the edge.


Scratch nosed into her jerky bag and stole a few pieces while she scratched his neck.


It was nearly dark and they settled in for the night. Their stores of food and supplies had diminished rapidly due to the hard ride and the lost horse. Tomorrow she’d have to go looking for that horse or hunt for some more food.


Make Camp roll plus supply of +1 yippee
7 = 6[d6]+1


10 = 7[d10]+3[d10]


A weak hit. She’ll Relax and take +1 Spirit (now 2/5).


They ate some of their remaining food. Aron eventually turned his attention away from Scratch, who was nearly as tired as the horses and fell into a deep sleep under the rhythmic swish swish of Aron sharpening his axe and knives. He and Eilwen swapped stories from their youth, fond stories and memories about mother and father and Frostbridge. The time mother nursed a baby kestrel who’d lost its mother back to life and Eilwen learned to hunt with it from father. For a few years, she hunted with it, but it eventually caught ill and died.


“All things die in their time,” her mother had told her kneading some dough with her strong hands.


“But not us. Not yet,” Father had said finishing his mending and the sharpening of his weapons and tools. He stood up. “There’s yet more days to hunt beasts and nights to dance! Come Arwed!” And he had grabbed her gently about her waist from behind. Her hands sticky with dough and flour in her hair, she protested, but weakly, and Eilwen could tell she loved his attention. She let him pull her to him. Eilwen remembered that warm glow as they looked at each other with obvious love.


She let that memory warm her. And of course Scratch’s companionship added to that warmth when he awoke, and shifted in his sleep to nestle down closer to her. At first she stiffened then smiled when his warm rhythmic breathing, ruffling her hair and she heard a rattle in his throat, like a cat purring almost. 


Channeling a little ‘How to Train Your Dragon’ moment... :-)


The next morning, the clouds parted revealing a beautiful pink dawn that split into a grin of orange light that spilled over the land.


She felt rested and told Aron she would be hunting and looking for the horse. She followed the stream on foot up to where it had pooled in a ledge further above them. She waited and saw a wild mountain goat hop down a small ledge to the pool of water. It put its nose in and began to drink.


She crouched and cautiously moved to a better position, closer, for a killing shot.


Secure an advantage with stealth roll + shadow


4 = 1[d6]+3


8 = 5[d10]+3[d10]


A weak hit. She gets +1 momentum. (now 3/10)


It raised its head, stiffening. She didn’t have much time.


Resupply + wits


6 = 4[d6]+2


11 = 5[d10]+6[d10]


A miss. (Failure count 11/24)
I’ll use the Pay the Price table. 
Something of value is lost or destroyed.


She felt the fletchings on her cheek as she sighted down. She exhaled and nearly let loose her shaft, when she felt first the wood cracking and then her bow suddenly snapped in two, and the released tension caused the arrow to shoot off to the side to clatter on the nearby rock wall of the mount. The loud sound startled the goat, and in a clatter of hooves on stones, it splashed through the pool and bounded out of sight up the trail.


She gritted her teeth, holding shouting curses in abayance. She returned back to camp, holding the sad remains of her bow. She had nothing to show for her efforts.


“Well, we still have food yet,” Aron said with a shrug when he saw her come into campe her broken bow held in her hands. She nearly felt gratitude that he didn’t start raging at her. “Though I’m taking charge of the foodstuffs,” he added, stuffing the food packages into his own pack. “It’s time your lizard friend found his own food in the world.”


“That might not be the wisest of choices, brother. He’s come to expect some food from us. It might make him...angry.”


“Bah, and whose fault is that?” his blond untidy hair tossed in the wind. He smiled at her 
pointedly, “You should have thought of that when you decided to become its mother. “The idiot creature needs to learn to pull his own weight. Come! Let’s be off, and rid the world of more evil,” he said in a voice dripping with faux cheer. He mounted his horse.


She untied her bow string from the snapped wood and reluctantly let the two pieces of her now useless weapon fall to the ground. She’d have to make a new one when she found the time. Even knowing she could, it still saddened her to let the shattered wood fall to the earth. It had been her companion for many days.


With a sigh, she mounted her gelding and followed after, Scratch shambled along behind snorting and snapping at some butterflies that dove and flew past him.
Reply
#59
Episode 38
They continued moving through the pass.


Undertake a Journey + Wits


5 = 3[d6]+2


13 = 6[d10]+7[d10]


Another miss! (Failure Count 12/24)
I’ll use the MAG for ideas.
(Centipede, lightning, crystal ball, knife, screwdriver & screws, some balloon like thing (maybe 3 lungs tied together), a quill and inkpot, bomb, fiery eye)
Lovin’ me some MAG!


As they climbed, the narrow trail, the hills drew closer together. The weather grew colder, the sky dark and brooding, heavy with ill intent.


“A storm is coming,” Aron said and drew his cloak closer. 


The first drops of rain began to fall soon after. Eilwen was no stranger to foul weather, but most of her life, she saw water in its frozen form. It came first in small drops, then in a more moderate drone that pittered into her face and dripped off her fur skinned cloak as the trail wound through a forest of pines, the clear clean scent of wet earth and pine gum mingled with the smell of horse and wet leather clothes.


They proceeded beyond, and started to climb the trail that wound up up a rocky bluff.


An hour later, the clouds became even more ominous and roiled. Flashes of light greeted them and then, of a sudden, a sheet of white light slammed into the rocky bluff above them. The explosion of sound and sudden bright light spooked the horses.


Face Danger + wits (horsemanship essentially) to keep them under control
5 = 3[d6]+2


16 = 6[d10]+10[d10]


Another miss! (miss count 13/24)


Her mount reared back, and she let go of the reins to hold onto the saddles pommel with white knuckles as the horse drove forward, headless of her attempts to control it. More lightning struck and it bounded up the rocky slope, seeking some way out of the maddening storm of fire and light that now lit about it. It rounded a bend, screaming, eyes wild and rolling with fright and ran at a gallop towards a dead tree that lay fallen across the road, white with age, bone-white branches jutting every which way. 


Does it leap over it?
(50/50 | 2[d10]) No


She tried to reach for the reins to stop the horse, but couldn’t. The horse tried to leap over it; instead, its reins caught on a thick branch in mid leap. The sudden arrested momentum jerked the horses from it’s head long flight in mid air and onto its side in a crunching heap. The sudden change sent Eilwen flying from the saddle, crashing into the dead branches of the fallen tree. 


(I’ll say she takes 2 harm... since it was a dangerous situation. She’s now 3/5)


Limbs snapped about her, whipping across her face and body as she rolled across the wet hard earth. When she came to rest, she felt a warm pain in her right thigh and her head stung and throbbed.


Endure Harm roll + 3 current health
3 = 1[d6]+2


13 = 10[d10]+3[d10]


Failure Count (14/24). She keeps the health deduction and also loses 1 momentum (now 2/10)
Yikes. Long string of failures there. 


Warm blood dripped into her eyes and off her nose. Her vision swam, and she rolled on the ground groaning from the pain.


Did Aron lose control of his mount?
(50/50 | 7[d10]) Yes


(Likely | 10[d10]) Yes, and...


Yikes.


Damage for her horse. I’ll roll on the damage chart and will add +2 since for the situation.
(20 = 18[d20]+2) Critical Injury: Requires immediate attention; clearly life-threatening if not immediately deadly.)


Oh man...This is not good.


“Aron!” she called out. But she couldn’t see her brother through the sheets of water and flashes of light. 


Her vision finally cleared some, and she saw her horse, lying on the ground. His left foreleg was shattered, bones jutting out, wet with blood in a compound fracture, a branch had punctured his side like a spear. Blood and bile pooled on the ground, its eyes rolled in their sockets. It gasped in pain.


There was only one thing she could do for it. 


Lightning still crashed on the peaks about them, spearing some rocks and sending them clattering down across the trail behind them. The flashes momentarily blinded her and left after images hanging in front of her vision.


Is the lightning continuing?
(Somewhat Unlikely | 7[d10]) Yes, but...
But the storm’s fury is abating


Squinting, she tested her leg and found she could stand on it. The pain made her gasp, but her wounds weren’t mortal at least. Unlike those of her horse. She moved in a low painful crouch to the young gelding, kneeling beside him on the wet hard-packed earth and stone. She put her hand on its neck, pushing it back down and cradling its head, as it tried to rise, winneying in pain.


“Shhh,” she tried to whisper in its ear. It’s tongue licked at her hand, warm and rough. She felt numb, her heart sore from the sudden turn of events. She pulled out her knife and with a sudden thrust, drove it into its neck. It’s eyes looked at her, not understanding. “I give you pain to end your suffering. It doesn’t seem right, I know. But I send you back to mother earth and father sky,” she said, “You will run the storm, brave one.”


She caressed it as it bled out. A few moments later, the horse gasped his last shuddering breath and the rain lessened, its fury moving eastward. A cold drizzle followed and the roiling dark clouds, shifted to a slate gray.


Does she see Aron’s horse around?
(50/50 | 5[d10]) No, but...
But there are clear tracks the direction it went.


She followed the horses tracks across a mixture of half muddy ground, thick with small rocks and wild grass, where a stream drizzled off the peaks above them. There she saw the horse. 


Is it injured?
(50/50 | 8[d10]) Yes
(12 = 10[d20]+2) Moderate Injury: Hampers action significantly; will require first aid/medical attention.


It had a gash down one flank and hip and there she saw Aron nearby his arms tangled in the horses reins, the weight of his body pulling the horse’s 


She looked about and saw him, lying in the mud, eyes closed. 


“Brother!” She half shouted and moved to him as quickly as her pained leg would allow and knelt beside him.


Is Aron conscious?
(50/50 | 3[d10]) No


(13 = 11[d20]+2) Moderate Injury: Hampers action significantly; will require first aid/medical attention.


His wounds didn’t look terrible, thank the stars, but he had gashes on his body where it looked like the horse had dragged him and one eye looked puffy, but she thought he’d be alright with some rest.


His armor had likely saved him from a worse fate


He is trampled underfoot


She hobbled back to her dead gelding, and undid the saddle bags, pulling them from under the horse’s massive bulk. Then she made her way back to Aron and began tending their wounds. 


Heal Move roll + wits


7 = 5[d6]+2


20 = 10[d10]+10[d10]


Oh man oh man. A match on double 10s!! Whaaa? That’s like the worst possible roll. And it’s not a good time for that to happen. Well it never is... but sheesh...TPK anyone?


Failure count (15/24)


She wiped away the blood away from his wounds and bandaged the worst cuts when she heard the sound.


First, I’m going to roll on the Pay the Price table.
95 - A friend, companion, or ally is put in harm’s way.


Is Scratch around?
(50/50 | 2[d10]) No


So it can’t be him. Must be to Aron then.


By what? Delos’s minions?
(Somewhat Likely | 3[d10]) No


Some creature?
(Likely | 7[d10]) Yes


An animal?
(50/50 | 8[d10]) Yes


I’ll do the matching 10s later.


A loud snuffle and snorting sound. Her hand was halfway into her saddle bag, pulling out another bandage, when a huge boar, with long spear like tusks, ambled into view, possibly out of some nearby shelter. It sniffed, raised its yellowed dirt-covered wet with torn grass and fixed her with its beady eyes. Heaving it’s head in challenge it grunted and growled, then lowering it’s head it charged.


It’s a Boar, It’s either foraging or sees them as intruders. Who can tell. Either way, it’s maddened by the scent of blood and out for more.


Is it a larger than usual bore?
(Somewhat Likely | 6[d10]) Yes


Great. Yeah, I guess that makes sense since I rolled those double 10s...This is a Formidable encounter then. That means they give 3 harm and any harm against them is only one box. That means one hit from it (will drop her remaining 3 Health to 0 and possibly out of the fight).


If Aron were hale and with her, I’d downgrade it to Dangerous. But for now, she’s all on her own.


Here we go 0/10 progress so far.


Enter the Fray move. 
Roll + wits  (ambushed)


4 = 2[d6]+2


13 = 6[d10]+7[d10]


Another miss! Grrr. I cannot get ahead! And I have only 2/10 momentum to speak of. So I can’t change anything!
Failure count (16/24)


On a miss, combat begins with you at a disadvantage. Pay the price. Your foe has initiative.


I’ll roll on the Pay the Price move’s chart.
87 - It waste’s resources.


With a frantic cry, and trembling hands, she only managed to draw her knife, and then the massive creature was nearly upon her. She dove to the side out of the way as it drove towards her and Aron. It’s massive frame churned their pack into the mud and wild grass. It then stopped and the tusks ripped up the pack and tossed it into the air.


-1 supply (they’re now at 0 supply). 


That means the party is now in an unprepared state and they cannot forage for supplies. The only way to resupply now is to find a settlement. If a move says they lose supply, then they have to lose something else: Momentum or Health or Spirit, based on the situation.


The above diving out of the way, was just storytelling for the Pay the Price result of failing Enter the Fray. She didn’t really make any roll to dive out of the way. But now the creature starts with initiative.


It came at her again, massive tusks sweeping towards her.


She’ll try to roll out of the way. I must succeed here or I might be done for.


Face Danger + edge
4 = 2[d6]+2


10 = 3[d10]+7[d10]


Yeesh. A weak hit. I succeed but face a troublesome cost.


The boar’s tusks tore a furrow into the dirt next to her as she rolled out of the way once again.


The troublesome cost is momentum -1. (Momentum is now 1/10)


The bore, snuffed the air, snorting and grunting, puffs of breath, white clouds in the chill air. Then it turned and started moving towards Aron’s still form.


“No!” Eilwen shouted and finally drew her sword. It scraped free with a hiss from its scabbard. 


Is Aron still unconscious?
(50/50 | 9[d10]) Yes


Does Scratch finally come around?
(50/50 | 9[d10]) Yes


Eilwen heard Scratch give a screech as he flew and landed atop an outcropping above the scene. He tilted his head and looked down at her. 


“Attack the boar!” she commanded him, looking up at him and pointed her sword at the boar.


Does he attack?
(Somewhat Likely | 2[d10]) No


Scratch looked at her curiously, then settled down as if to watch, claws gripping the edge.


She ground her teeth in frustration and pain. Her leg continued to throb and blood seeped from the wounds.


The boar had reached Aron’s side. Sword blade in her right hand and dagger in her left she screamed and launched herself at the boar’s rear!


I’m using the once-per-combat Turn the Tide move. Better do it now before it’s too late. So I steal the initiative. I get to add +1 to my Strike move, and if I hit I take +1 momentum. I’ll use the Duelist bonus of +2 + my Iron of 1. That’s a total of +4 to my roll. If I fail, I face a dire consequence.


8 = 4[d6]+4


10 = 7[d10]+3[d10]


Finally a strong hit! Yes! I give 2 harm from deadly weapon + 1 extra harm for the Duelist talent. That’s 3/10 progress boxes


Momentum is +1 (so now 2/10) 


She slashed both blades into its rough-hide back, cutting furrows and drawing bright blood. The creature swung towards her again, blood streaking down its flanks. At least it faced her and not Aron. She knew from the size of this creature, and the way it angrily sized her up, that this fight was far from over.


“Scratch!” she shouted again, gesturing for him to join her. “Attack!”


Does Scratch join the fray now that he sees Eilwen attacking?
(50/50 | 1[d10]) No, and...


Scratch watched for a few more seconds, then yawned and with a small screech of parting flew away.


Alright... desperate times call for desperate measures. 


She’s going to try and feint to move left, but then spin right in a graceful slashing arc to cut through one of its legs.


Secure an Advantage + shadow (deception or trickery)

9 = 6[d6]+3


9 = 8[d10]+1[d10] 


Another strong hit! I can take control and can add +1 to my attack, or I can prepare to act and take +2 momentum.


I’ll take control and attack again, this time with +1. So again +4 to my strike with all my bonuses. 


5 = 1[d6]+4


15 = 6[d10]+9[d10]


Drat not good enough! A miss.
Failure count (17/24)


The creature had a canny sense of cunning and anticipated her move and her blade clanged on its tusks as it spun to face her, knocking it from her hands into the wet earth ten paces away. (from the miss)


Is Aron awake yet? 
(50/50 | 8[d10]) Yes


Finally some help, assuming he’s not too hurt to help!


Does it attack Aron
(50/50 | 5[d10]) No, but...


“Eilwen? What--?” she heard Aron say as he groggily groaned and moved into a kneeling position, just as the creature rushed at her grunting and growling. 


Eilwen ran for her sword.


She’ll need to Face Danger to quickly get her sword.


7 = 5[d6]+2


13 = 10[d10]+3[d10]
 
A weak hit


I’ll take -1 momentum now 


It charged after her, churning up the earth.


With an urgent cry of defiance, she picked up her sword and then turned and faced it, her blades flashing through the rain, water and blood streaming off her face!


She’s going to Clash with her Duelist talent. It’s her best chance of getting back initiative since Duelist gives her that extra +2 bonus. She has such a low Iron stat. But a weak hit is the downside as those count as misses.


8 = 5[d6]+3


7 = 1[d10]+6[d10]


A strong hit! Momentum is now 3/10, and she gives it three more Harm + 1 harm for a strong hit with Clash. That’s 7/10 boxes.


She spun just as it reached her, and drove her dagger into its side again and again in a deep puncture wound. In her right hand, she slashed across its face, ruining one eye. The beast screamed and spun at her. Disoriented from blood dripping into its face and down its side, it gave a maddening scream, and the tusks barely missed, tearing off her cloak as she dove to the right, rolling in the mud and scrambling to her feet. It screamed in pain and frustration, grunting and heaving, blowing puffs of air, white and hot as its blood steamed in the cold.


She attacked again, blood and mud mixing on her face, her blades whirring, her braid dripping with water. She saw Aron groggily rise to his feet. He didn’t have time to grab his shield, but he pulled out his spear and rushed towards the creature’s rear.


Same as before Strike +3 (+1 iron, +2 duelist)


6 = 3[d6]+3


10 = 5[d10]+5[d10]


A strong hit with positive matches! Nice! That’s 4 more harm to fill the 10 progress boxes. Whew! I’m going try and do the End the Fight move. 
Come on lady luck!



16 = 10[d10]+6[d10]


Drat. A weak hit. 


I succeed in ending the fight but there’s a complication.


Come on lady luck! I’m going to roll a d3 to pick one of 3 options that are 
  1. [i]It’s worse than you thought: Endure Harm (Eilwen gets hurt)[/i]
  2. [i]You suffer collateral damage: Something of value is lost or broken.[/i]
  3. [i]Or someone important must pay the cost. (ie Aron gets hurt).[/i]

3 = 3[d3]


Aron hobbled up behind the huge boar and thrust the spear into its back leg just as Eilwen reached it. The huge beast wheeled to face this new threat, and its tusks swung past her, churning a furrow in the soil as it’s back leg collapsed under it. She stood her ground as the tusks passed her and hacked off one of them as it passed. Then, sliding under the other, tusk, she slammed her knife down into the other eye. 


Blinded and enraged, the boar heaved about them. Aron drove the spear in again and again into its flank. The boar trashed, and turned all in an instant, rolling and snapping the spear in two and then the boar righted on three legs, and for a moment she saw Aron lifted up by the single tusk, flung into the air, his broken spear flying from his hands. The tusk came back red with blood. Aron hit the ground with a thud and didn’t move.


“Aron!” she screamed and charged the enraged boar. She slashed at its other leg, hamstringing it. It collapsed, dragging both back legs behind it, trying to turn to face her. She didn’t let it. She ran up its back, dropping her dagger and up-ending the blade so it pointed downwards, she drove it deep into its skull, spearing its brain. 


The creature quivered and finally lay still.
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#60
Episode 39

She ran to her brother, dropping her sword as she fell to her knees in the mud.


I’ll use rpgsolo’s damage generator again. I’ll add +2 for the dangerous encounter and +3 for the damage the board would give to see how Aron fared. I’ll subtract 1 since he does have leather armor. So +4--I don’t have to do this. I could just ask, is the oracle if he were hurt badly and go with that. But I like this.


(16 = 12[d20]+4) Severe Injury: Incapacitating and may become Critical if untreated.


Is he unconscious?
(Somewhat Likely | 1[d10]) No, and...


He coughed weakly and looked at her with a feverish gaze. “Eilwen,” he sucked in a deep breath and gasped from the pain. His left hand clenched hers, his right hugged his right side and she saw blood seeping through the fingers of his right hand.


“I’m here. Nights beneath!” she gasped, pulling his hand away. I came away from his side sticky and wet with dark blood where its single tusk had gored him.


“That was a large boar,” he coughed again and then the wheeze turned into a gasp of pain. He winced as her fingers examined the wound. “Why didn’t you tell me we were hunting boar today.”


“I didn’t know we were. Don’t move!” She said and ran back to her pack, but the pack and its contents were ruined from the boar’s tramplings. All the clean bandages she had so carefully torn and boiled and wrapped in an oilskin cloth were now churned in the mud. Her spirits sank, but she had no time for despair. She took her knife and tore off a long strip of her bearskin cloak and wrapped it tightly about his middle as the rain dripped in dismal thrumming onto her head. “Come on. We need shelter and a fire!”


From the matching 5s from before. I’ll cash those in for a positive or interesting narrative twist. I’ll see if the MAG gives me any ideas. (Wicked looking dagger, strange tooth or claw, shield with design, mustache and beard, hammer, dagger slashing down, aerosol can, hand swiping a pouch, lighting dash.)


Hmm. I’m not coming up with anything from that. I’ll use a CQ ... What is it?
Negligence / A plan


Ah perfect...


While Aron coughed in pain in the rain, she quickly explored the immediate area. The steep ragged slope of the mountain drew close to the muddy grassy region. At one end of the half muddy and grassy field, up on a hillock that overlooked the trail further on, she saw a half-crumbling stone tower, composed of weather beaten, wind-worn stone. The second story was half completed, and the floor of the second story had sodden boards choked with mold and grasses that provided some protection from the rain.


Had the boar made this its home?
(50/50 | 6[d10]) Yes, but...


She saw scrape marks of where the boar had taken up residence here at one point, but no fresh signs that it had stayed here.


Has anyone lived here recently?
(50/50 | 6[d10]) Yes, but...


People, she saw, had been here recently. She saw some relatively fresh ashes from a camp fire, and scraps of food, a few days old, perhaps? But no one was here now. Maybe Delos had stayed here?


Anything of interest inside?
(Unlikely | 4[d10]) No


Seeing nothing else of interest, but grateful for the shelter, she half dragged, half carried Aron to the shelter. He lay weakly on the cold ground, his cough growing worse. She looked about at her dismal supplies. They had food at least, especially with a freshly killed boar. But much of their other gear had been scattered or broken when the boar churned up their belongings.


(reflected by the supply of 0) 


She fingered a small broken wooden box that had held some healing herbs. Only some bare flakes remained.


“I’ll be right back,” she said, wiping his hair back from his forehead. Was it her imagination or was his skin getting warmer. “I’m going to look for some herbs to help with your wound!”


He groaned and nodded weakly.


Not wanting to give into despair, she set about making a fire to keep him warm, and then ducked outside to look for some healing herbs. 


This is Secure an advantage + wits move


6 = 4[d6]+2


5 = 2[d10]+3[d10]


A strong hit! I’ll take the +1 on her healing attempt.


A few hundred paces up the trail, she found some Bloodbane clumped near the base of a cracked boulder. The bright green leaves of the plant had a bitter mint-like taste in teas, but it was better known for its healing properties on open wounds and bruises, it was especially good at fighting infection. She rushed back to Aron. The fire was nearly out when she returned, but she fed it some dry wood she found in a corner of the tower’s ground floor level and set about preparing a poultice.


Heal + wits + 1


5 = 2[d6]+3


8 = 6[d10]+2[d10]


A weak hit. The care is helpful but we suffer either -1 supply or -1 momentum. I have to choose momentum. Momentum is now 2/10.


Once the poultice was prepared, she returned with a haunch of meat from the boar. She would dry some, but the rest would spoil unless the weather remained below freezing. Food wasn’t her concern at the moment. Proper clothing and other supplies were.


Okay, now for the matching 10s from earlier. I’m going to use the Major Plot Twist oracle. I haven’t used this yet. In the rules it says: 


“Use this oracle to introduce a narrative surprise or revelation. Most of these results have a negative implication and can be used to resolve a match at a crucial moment in your story. In particular, this is an effective tool to leverage when you make a move with matched 10’s on the challenge dice.”


I’ll reveal the roll and show results later in this case.


The wind howled outside and the rain turned to snow and sleet as the temperature dropped. She huddled close to the fire and close to Aron, trying to keep him warm. Scratch hadn’t returned. She had brought the horse inside as well. The more bodies, the better for warmth. Her cloak, she had cut up to use for bandages, and the few blankets they brought were sodden and muddy.


Due to the warmth from the fire, the exertions of the day and the mind-numbing wind outside, she dozed off. Aron uttered a cry, and she jerked awake.


“Aron?”


In the firelight his eyes were closed and he resumed a fitful snore. She quietly lay another log on the fire and settled into sleep when she heard him begin to speak. Moan more than speak. It unsettled her.


He moaned in his sleep. “Mommy no! Please not the Dark Man. Please don’t bring him! He’s scary. I’ll be a good boy, I--I promise.”


What was this? She sat up, wide awake now. Aron trembled in real fear.


“Aron?” she whispered, touching his arm, but he continued to speak, and to shudder, his eyes shut.


“Mommy... no!” he groaned and then whispered. “His eyes bleed darkness mommy. Please send him away! He’s not nice and--It’s dark mommy. He makes the room so dark. I’m--I’m sorry I won’t be mean to Eilwen anymore. I’ll do as you say! Just take him away!”


He settled some, his breathing growing easier and then paused as if listening.


“Thank you mommy. I--I love you too mommy...”


Eilwen felt gooseflesh rise on her arms and up the back of her neck. Was this just some nightmare he was having or-- she swallowed and shook Aron -- something worse.


Her brother groaned and his eyes fluttered open, a weariness behind them.


“Did you have a dream?”


“What?” he said, blinking in the firelight and winced, shifting.


“Careful, the bandage might come loose if you move too much.”


He grunted and leaned back against the wall and gave a weak nod. His eyes had already started to drift shut.


“You said something about...mother. It sounded like a dream or--a memory?”


Does he remember?
(Unlikely | 5[d10]) No


He blinked again, yawned and slowly shook his head, “Sorry, don’t know what you’re talking about. I’m tired, sister, and my head feels fuzzy.” Another yawn took him. “Need to sleep.” And with that, he settled back to sleep. 


What I rolled on the Major Plot Twist oracle:
84 - The truth of a relationship is revealed


Is there someone else around?
(50/50 | 2[d10]) No


Given where they were and the context of things, it was the only thing that made narrative sense to happen.


She fed the fire some more, stirring the sparks and adding some more wood, hoping the orange flames that clawed against the night would chase back the darkness she felt at this latest unwelcome revelation of her mother. Perhaps what she’d heard him say about mother was just a bad dream? She hoped that’s all it was but her hopes began to diminish under the dismal weight of evidence. She hugged herself and leaned closer to the fire, pondering and churning dark thoughts.


 Edge 2
 Heart 1
 Iron 1 
 Shadow 3
 Wits 2



Health: 3/5
Spirit: 2/5
Supply: 0/5
Momentum: 1/10
Failure Count: 17/24
Unspent XP: 3
Debilities: None
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