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  #91  
Old Mar 2nd, 2021, 12:12 PM
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Harp Strum
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Yes! Yes! Yes! They were doing it! They were beating back those villainous slimes like the champions they were! Slashing and stabbing, spearing and smashing, her flock slyly sent them to whatever slimy hellscape awaited balls of ooze who slumbered in slippery wet caverns, their vile plans to ambush innocent Kenkus and Kobolds alike finally put to an end. Harp Strum felt rather proud about the whole ordeal. Pleased as punch that the only one who suffered a doozy of a scratch was Ayaga. His burns were bad. That was true. And they smelled bad, too. That was also true. But the scars, oh, they’ll look lovely next to his beautiful blue plumage. A real cock of the walk he’ll be once they heal properly!

Harp Strum looked to the others, eager to relish in their victory with songs and hip-hoorays like she’d heard many adventurers do in her favorite bardic tales. But no one looked happy. In fact, they all looked rather concerned for…

“Gristle!” Harp Strum’s eyes widened at seeing the sweet little Kobold crumpled over his drum, quiet and still. Quiet and still like Splash and Snap, their bodies cold to the touch no matter how long Harp Strum held them. A cold dread washed over Harp Strum. She watched quietly as Ayaga knelt beside him. Harp Strum’s breath short, wheezing like it hurt to breathe. She could feel a strange weight on her chest, crushing her with each passing second. But all Harp Strum could think was how much she didn’t want to hear Ayaga’s pretty little poetry for the tiny Kobold. She’d grown rather fond of him. Him and his little drum.

“Is he asleep?” asked Harp Strum, refusing to say the word she feared most. Ayaga was silent. He moved Gristle’s body with gentle hands and laid him across the ground. His little drum set aside. Harp Strum held her breath when he looked at her. Frozen to the spot. But her dagger clattered to the ground the instant Ayaga beckoned her over, his wordless command understood to Harp Strum as she knew there was still time to pull him back from life’s final curtain.

The problem was that Harp Strum didn’t know what to do to help with wounds. She often wore hers until they were better or they weren’t. But maybe she had something in her bag! Something that would help Ayaga mend Gristle back to his lackadaisy self! Unceremoniously, she dumped the contents of her pack onto the ground. The card she snatched from the pink man corpse fluttered softly in the air. Her crystal clunked hard on the rocky floor, Harp Strum quick to hold it in her beak so it wouldn’t roll away, unknowingly providing better light for Ayaga. A strange coin. Metal twisted in the shape of rose. And vials full of bubbly liquid were scattered around the three.

“Dothathelp?” she asked with her mouth full, briefly making a face as she accidentally licked her not-so-tasty crystal. Ayaga didn’t say anything. He just gestured to places Harp Strum needed to apply pressure to while his gentle hands worked elsewhere. Using her as an extra set of hands to help guide Gristle back to the waking world. Harp Strum was fine with that. She just wished Ayaga’s healing was fast like Gristle’s. The suspense of whether he’ll get better or not did a number on her heart.

It was then Ayaga began to sing. It was soft and low. Like thunder rumbling in distant mountains. She didn’t understand the words. They were too rough and gravelly for her to grasp. But it sounded sad, his song. As though he was not sure if he’d get an answer back. Running her talons sweetly over Gristle’s head, Harp Strum hoped their little friend would answer him soon. A duet was only a duet with two.

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  #92  
Old Mar 3rd, 2021, 11:57 AM
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Day 1

The three remaining slime molds did all that they could to make things hard for the group. And make things hard they did. They didn't travel where the group wanted them to go. They attacked things that the group didn't want them to attack. And they seemed to 'squish' and 'splurch' in weird ways as they were smacked, stabbed and sliced into oblivions. But the most pressing issued seemed to be what they managed to do to Gristle.

The small kobold seemed to be grievously injured, but Ayaga, with the help of Harp Strum, managed to control the worst of the injuries. This still left the little creature unconscious and seemingly broken on the floor.

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As An'Mal, Baruuk, and Dagg closed in to see what needed to be done, they noticed some things of interest drop from Harp Strum's bag as the bird was looking for anything to help. Along with some of the mundane items from the dwarf to appear on the floor were two small vials. Two small vials filed with a cloudy, swirling, shimmering liquid of unknown origin.

Now the important question at hand - Could either of these two items be of use to the situation at hand?

OOGMStones: 9 minutes, 6 seconds left.

Combat is over, no slimes left.

Potions/Vials Identification: The Identify spell will tell you exactly what it is. Detect Magic will tell you the school of magic associated with the potion/vial (If any). A slight taste of the potion/vial will allow you to make roll. A DC will not be provided as public knowledge, as they will be different depending on the Skill used in attempting to identify the item. If you manage to beat the roll by 5 or more, you will know the potion/vial's content to such a degree that you will never have to roll again for the same item in the future... so keep track of what you end up knowing. Possible skills to roll: Arcana, Nature, Medicine, Wisdom, or Intelligence. Some skills will offer lower DCs for Potions, others will offer lower DCs for non-magical Vials. After making a roll, you need to wait a long rest before another check on the same item can be made.


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  #93  
Old Mar 4th, 2021, 12:03 PM
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Baruuk stood back respectfully as An'mal and Harp Strum gathered closely around Gristle's fallen form. He'd told the kobold to stay close, hadn't he? And where had that gotten them. Gristle was in a bad way, and looking around at the rest of the group, Baruuk could tell that the others were little better. This shortcut had already cost them dearly, what deeper price could it claim?

But deep inside, the bugbear knew that he couldn't blame Pilfer or his shortcut. No, the fault lay squarely on Baruuk's shoulders and his alone. His had been the failure that brought the oozes and slimes down upon the party's heads. The others had all rushed to his rescue instead of protecting themselves as they should have. Now one of his friends lay critically hurt and there was nothing he could do about it. He didn't have any skill in healing like An'mal or magic like his tribe's shaman.

His eyes fell on the two vials mixed in among the general detritus that Harp Strum had emptied from her pack. The dwarf had been carrying these, hadn't he? He obviously felt they were important. Baruuk didn't know much about Pink Skin magic, but he'd seen enough adventurers during his day to recognize a potion when he saw one. If only there was some way to determine what they would do. Perhaps one would help?

His hand brushed the bone fetish at his belt and the familiar clattering calmed his thoughts a little and filled him with memories of, well not a better time... but a different one. He thought about the shaman who had presented it to the new chief when the old one had died. The same shaman who had treated Baruuk's own injuries when he was mauled by an owlbear. Too weak and injured to join the raids that season, Baruuk had watched the shaman mix any number of strange unguents and poultices. There had been no attempt to teach the young bugbear anything... but he had his memories. For much of his recovery, he had bandages bound thick across his eyes... but he could remember the healing brew the shaman made. He could remember the way it smelled.

It couldn't be that simple, could it? The ranger snatched up the vials and unstoppered each bottle in turn, bringing them to his nose and inhaling deeply. He closed his eyes and tried to remember. What did healing smell like?

After a long pause, he shook his head helplessly. They smelled too... clean? Antiseptic. Like the Pink Skins themselves, scrubbed clean of anything and everything of any value. Neither smelled correct. None of the earthy richness he associated with healing. Was that because neither was what they needed? Or because Pink Skin magic was as indecipherable as its wielders. He simply could not tell.

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  #94  
Old Mar 6th, 2021, 02:32 PM
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She'd seen these things before. Vials of strange liquids that the pink-skins would consume to employ a variety of different effects. Dagg reached down and picked up a vial of the cloudy liquid. Perhaps one of these could help Gristle in some way. Though she wasn't overly familiar with the concoctions that the pink-skins would come up with, she was aware that they could be hurt. Because they could be hurt, it would stand to reason that they would carry some means of healing from grievous injury when traversing into less-than-favorable environments.

Pulling the stopper out, she poured a tiny amount of the liquid into her palm. She smelled it first, trying to ascertain it's nature before deciding that there was only one true way to determine what this stuff was, and if it could help them. She took a breath before tasting the liquid and bracing for the worst.

A moment later, not much happened. A slight tingling sensation on her tongue and lips, but that was about it. If she had to guess, Dagg would imagine that this might actually do some sort of healing if consumed in a high enough quantity.

"Hey, try giving Gristle some of this red stuff. I'm not 100 percent sure, but I think it's some sort of healing drink that the pink-skins use in battle. They use these liquids to do all kinds of things. We should keep an eye out for more of them and try to identify what they do as we continue on. Good find, Harp Strum." She says as she hands the vial over and continues remaining alert to their surroundings. As soon as Gristle was stable, they needed to keep moving.
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  #95  
Old Mar 7th, 2021, 02:38 PM
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An'mal stood for a few moments taking several long slow deep breaths, allowing the rage to flow out and calm to settle upon him. Tucking away his glaive behind his back, A'mal moved towards the circle of his companions gathered around Gristle.

The poet and Harp Strum were keeping the band's leader alive but Gristle remained unconscious. Bossy Lass was holding some liquid magic in her hands and after a taste-test declared it to be pink-skin healing magic. Bossy Lass seemed to be 100 peasants sure. That seemed like a lot of peasants to An'mal and Bossy Lass was one of those bugbears you knew you could trust to be right far more often than was comfortable, so he smoothed back his hair and knelt beside their fallen leader. The group could not do without Gristle's musical genius. He scooped up the kobold gently into his massive arms and cradled Gristle like a baby. Without argument he followed Bossy Lass' directives and without looking up at her (he was too busy looking down with concern at Gristle), he reached out, took the red potion from her hand, forced the open opening of the glass vial into his mouth and poured the red liquid down Gristle's throat.

And then he waited, rocking Gristle gently in his arms and humming the tune his mum used to hum to him when he had stomach pains after eating the raw swamp rat flesh they were often forced to eat for dinner when he was noting but a snotrag, knee high to a hobgob.
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Old Mar 9th, 2021, 12:55 PM
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Ayaga was grateful for the assistance Harp Strum gave him. He gently, wordlessly instructed her this way or that as they did their best to stabilize the dying kobold. The flow of blood was staunched, and no bones stuck out at awful angles, but so much worse could have been going on unaided beneath the skin that it did little to ease the orc's tensed brow. When the contents of the kenku's bag clattered out onto the acid-bleached cave floor, his eyes darted from item to item quickly. And then they traced back over them a second time.

And then he went cross-eyed for a moment.

He could either not identify half of the things Harp hopefully offered up for assistance, or could not recognize how they would help. Defeat and relief both filled him when the other members of their wayward group crowded around and took up picking through the strange items, and the matter was taken out of his hands- first metaphorically, then literally. He winced when Dagg elected to lick a palmful of... whatever was in that vial. But his eyes widened when she guessed that it was a potion of healing. He leaned back when An'mal took the red potion and stuffed it right into the kobold's maw. For a moment he tried to help by rubbing at Gristle's throat to ease the passage of the liquid down into his system, but quickly he decided the best way to help was to yield him into the bugbear's massive, gentle, and fuzzy embrace.

Ayaga remained knelt like that, watching in mounting anticipation, and he only shifted now and then to keep the pebbles and debris on the floor from embedding in the skin of his knees. Moving too much more than that remound him of the ugly bruise welling up under the burned skin of his stomach.

 
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  #97  
Old Mar 9th, 2021, 03:11 PM
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Gristle, meanwhile, had found himself in an unusual situation.

He was floating, for starters. He did not, as a general rule, willingly defy the laws of gravity, or at the very least he would not willingly defy them if he knew they existed. Physics and legal understanding were concepts rather beyond him.

"My feets are not touching the ground," he said pleasantly to the neverending white void around him. "I don't even see a ground. Did the slimes kill the ground? Did the parrot kill the ground? I still don't know what a parrot is. Are you a parrot, endless white void?"

The void hummed, resonating with the sound of ten-million perfect musical instruments, all in perfect harmony. It was an unnaturally beautiful symphony, echoing with all the joy and sorrow and light and darkness and war and peace and life and death of a thousand worlds, a thousand universes. The terrible beauty of it could bring anyone to tears.

Gristle, however, dug something out of his nostril and idly flicked it off into space. It kept going. He giggled and waved as it sailed farther and farther away.

We greet you, Sentient Being, an unnatural amalgamation of a thousand voices boomed from all around him. You stand now at the threshold of all things, the dawn and dusk of creation, the world between worlds. Bask in the glory of Nothingness and Completeness, and weep with the knowledge that you above all others have been granted the Gift and Curse of seeing such horrifying beauty. Great and Dangerous Knowledge is within your--

"The booger is still flying away!" Gristle giggled. He kicked his feet as he laughed, causing himself to turn in a slow zero-gravity cartwheel. "Wow, flying is neat!"

The void paused, unused to being interrupted with such inanity.

Oh... kaaay? Perhaps we should speak more slowly. We thought you to be a being of intelligence, given your species' moderately developed brain and capacity for vocal communication. Is this an incorrect assumption? Are you cognizant--

"I am a kobold! Are you a parrot? Asking for a friend!" Gristle chirped, still slowly spinning head over heels. "Where are my friends, by the way? They are nice. They would like flying. Funny Friend Harp Strum is already part bird, so she would probably like flying a lot. I don't think she can fly even though she has bird-feathers. Or maybe she CAN, but she just DOESN'T. I don't know why she wouldn't-- flying is fun! I am getting dizzy though." He pinwheeled his arms in an attempt to stop his movement, but apparently while gravity no longer affected him, inertia was still very much in play. The movement of his arms sent his slow rotation into a slightly crazed wobble.

A rumble, like distant thunder, echoed throughout the void. The otherworldly voice did not seem to know how to respond to this.

Usually when We deign to open our realm to mortals, they behave with a more adequate level of humbled reverence, it said.

"I like to eat crickets," Gristle said happily. "What do you like to do?"

At this point, the voice decided that its usual habit of sharing a grain of ultimate knowledge with a lucky near-death person in hopes of causing a grand chaotic overhaul for good or ill in the material plane wasn't really going to work here.

Well, there goes MY afternoon, it sighed. Perhaps it needed to do something more... basic.

You, little kobold thing, are currently floating in limbo between existence and nonexistence.

Gristle stared blankly. The voice sighed.

Look, small creature, you're hovering between life and death. You will either wake up in your physical form or you will perish. That is not up to Us. We WERE going to do this thing where We offer you terrible, world-altering knowledge and then watch as you struggle with your shattered worldview if you return to life, but obviously that is not going to work with you. So just... try to sit here quietly until your physical form wakes up or ceases to exist, all right? Your existence in Our sacred plane is causing Us a great deal of annoyance.

"I get that a lot! I don't know what it means."

He stopped, tilting his head to the side. Something was changing. He felt... fuzzy. He looked down at his clawed hands, seeing them fade into transparency.

"My mouth tastes like burning. Is that bad?"

Oh thank the Void, it's finally leaving.

Gristle spun his limbs in an attempt to move, having learned absolutely nothing from the past however-many-eons he'd been stuck here. He felt himself being pulled somewhere, and he watched in awe as the endless white void disappeared into a point somewhere on the nonexistent horizon like water down a drain.

He passed out.

...............


Everything was dark. Hm. That's odd-- usually he can see in the dark. It took a moment for him to realize that his eyes were closed. He opened them slowly, finding himself no longer in the floaty void but now being carried by Noisy Friend An'mal.

Everyone was staring at him. They looked sad. Why were they sad? He should say something to cheer them up. Something encouraging. Something like--

"An'mal! I met the parrot! It was glowy and white and said I was annoying! And I could fly!"

No, not something like that. But whatever, fine, that would do.


ActionsPotion gives Gristle 7 hp
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  #98  
Old Mar 10th, 2021, 09:46 AM
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When the red magical liquid entered Gristle's body, the kobold began to twitch and become quite lively as An'mal rocked Gristle in his big, marvellously furred forearms. An'mal wasn't immediately sure if this was a good sign ... or a bad one. He looked to the poet Ayaga who stood beside him, apparently trying to strangle Gristle back to life. Ayaga looked positively concerned, which concerned An'mal.

It wasn't until Gristle's spasming hand dug into Gristle's flaring nostril that An'mal began to think Bossy Lass was right. It was healing magic he'd shoved down their fearless leader's throat! The flick of Gristle's finger saw a great hunk of partially dried snot land on An'mal's cheek.

An'mal smiled and rocked on.

Gristle's spasming intensified. Gristle's clawed toes slammed kick after kick into the side of An'mal's jaw. An'mal hoped the wee fellow hadn't broken his foot accidently, but surely kicking someone in the face was a clear sign that the kobold fought towards life and not away from it.

An'mal's smile, teeth smeered with his own blood, grew and he rocked on.

Gristle's mouth began to slur speech. "Yeeet crigs! Wajuu light a doo?" Soft head inside head damage? An'mal hoped not ... they needed the kobold's insightful genius to guide them forward.

An'mal frowned, looking down at the kobold with concern once more while rocking on.

Gristle's eyes fluttered open.An'mal smiled and set the koblod down gently as he asked about the parrot from the midnight joker's repertoire. "That's a ghost you met, not a parrot. You were mostly dead but Bo..." An'mal stopped himself short of calling Bossy Lass by his invented moniker. She might not like it; he didn't know her real name, but nevertheless An'mal didn't want her to hate him so his lips twisted the words into something more pleasant. "... but Bo...angin' Bugbear Babe over there saved you with Harp's magic potion. But ghosts can fly too."
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Old Mar 10th, 2021, 08:50 PM
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"You were mostly dead but Bo..." An'mal stopped himself short of calling Bossy Lass by his invented moniker. She might not like it; he didn't know her real name, but nevertheless An'mal didn't want her to hate him so his lips twisted the words into something more pleasant. "... but Bo...angin' Bugbear Babe over there saved you with Harp's magic potion. But ghosts can fly too."

One of Dagg's eyebrows raised at the sound of An'mal's slip of the tongue. He was about to call her something... Quite possibly something unflattering, but changed it at the last moment. Curious...

"Gristle," Dagg nodded in respect to the small kobold; "It's good to see you awake once more. From now on, I suggest you stay behind the larger fighters and away from the melee combatants. Can you walk?"

Before turning to leave, Dagg's eyes came to rest on An'mal for a moment as she asked an honest question; "An'mal? What is a 'Babe'? I imagine it is some sort of moniker but it is one that is unfamiliar to me. As such, I do not know whether I should be offended or flattered."
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Old Mar 10th, 2021, 11:36 PM
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"Oh!" Gristle said. "Well then, thank you Smart Friends Dagg and Harp Strum! I'm glad I'm not mostly dead anymore. The parrot ghost said I was gonna either die or not die, so I'm glad you helped me to get to the 'not-die' part. I don't think I'd like being dead very much."

He stood unsteadily, getting used to gravity once more. He was glad that the ground was back. Flying was fun for a little while, but spinning endlessly was starting to make his head feel weird. Well, more weird than it usually did.

A pile of dead slime fizzled away by his feet, and he skittered around it worriedly. He was tempted to poke it with a stick-- a sure-fire way of making sure something was dead. He didn't currently have access to an adequate stick, however, and he was loathe to touch it with his bare hands. Even he wasn't that stupid.

"An'mal? What is a Babe'?" Gristle's ears perked up at Dagg's conversation.

"Ooh! I know that one!" he chirped. "I think that's what Tall Scaleless Folk call their hatchlings! Silly An'mal; Smart Friend Dagg is not a hatchling! She is too tall! She'd never fit in an egg!" He grinned. "I dunno what a 'bo-angin' is though. An'mal is really smart to know so many words!"
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Old Mar 11th, 2021, 01:48 PM
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Wait. Hold on. Wait. Hold on a second.

Did they--did Baruuk and Dagg just drink poison!?

Harp Strum gasped in horror as both Bugbears mistakenly picked up her vials of nasty business and took a sip, undoubtedly believing it was delicious juice due to their bright, delicious colors. A mistake anyone would have made in their place-- and had in Harp Strum’s previous flock, may Grrrowl rest in peace-- but she never dreamed they would have done it! They were the smart ones! Harp Strum wanted to claw the vial out of their hands, and stick her grubby mitts down their gullet to try and make them hurl it all back up, but her talons were full with tending to poor little Gristle. So, she could only squawk and make faces at the pair, as the poisonous red vial was now passed to An’mal. No no no! Bad! Bad Bugbears! Nasty drink! Put down, please and thank you! Put--

"Hey, try giving Gristle some of this red stuff. I'm not 100 percent sure, but I think it's some sort of healing drink that the pink-skins use in battle. They use these liquids to do all kinds of things. We should keep an eye out for more of them and try to identify what they do as we continue on. Good find, Harp Strum."

It was what? Harp Strum blinked her black beady eyes at Dagg, her head cocked at an angle that The author would know. She tried. Don't recommend it. Ouch.anyone who wasn’t blessed with a bird’s skeleton would groan in agony from trying. Her gaze shifted between Baruuk and Dagg, Harp Strum’s eyes narrowing as she waited for either one to show signs of pink men poisoning. But nothing happened. No foaming at the mouth. No blood pooling from the eyes or nose. No gurgling death rattle that sounded like the fizzy death that exploded from a soda pop mixed with mint. Nothing but the usual Bugbear blank stares. Which meant one of two things. Bugbears were immune to poison, or Harp Strum didn’t know what a health potion was. The latter impossible, as Harp Strum knew everything.

But that sneaking fear that she didn’t, in fact, know everything reared its ugly head as An’mal picked up Gristle like he was a baby. Rocking him in his big, strong Bugbear arms, An’mal sang him a lullaby, calling to him just like Ayaga did with his song. The vial’s contents vanished down Gristle’s throat, and the flock waited, waited for any sign of life.

It was then Gristle shoved his finger into his snout, spasming like freshly caught trout as the potion (or poison, as Harp Strum was still eighty percent sure she was right) kicked in. Harp Strum cringed at the ghastly way Gristle moved, as it was surprisingly unnerving to watch the little Kobold, twisting and turning in every which direction like the shambling undead. It also didn’t help An’mal that suffered greatly from Gristle's revival, as Gristle kicked him so hard in the face, his clawprint left a bright red mark on his snout. “Is it working…?” Harp Strum muttered to Ayaga, but her question wasn’t answered by the just-as-baffled Ayaga, but Gristle himself, as he bolted upright, yelling loudly about...parrots??

“Oh no!” Harp Strum clasped her hands over her beak. He’s broken! We’ll have to take him back to the store! However, her flock didn’t share her shock or her sentiment, as they were certain Gristle was just fine. Well, as fine as Gristle could get. They all gathered around him, assuring him he was safe and sound. The threat of death over.

Baffled, Harp Strum stood up and walked over to the bubbly Kobold, her head tilted left-and-right as she scanned him for any injuries. The burns he suffered by the nasty slimes were all but gone. In fact, his scales looked shiny and new! The kind of shiny that only happened after a fresh molting! Not willing to accept she was wrong for the first time ever, she picked Gristle up, turning him over in her talons, as she pulled out his clothes and put her feathered head to his chest, listening to the tiny beat of a tinier drum in his chest. You are better?

Hmmmn. That was problematic. Because while Harp Strum was delighted he was better, as she rather liked the tiny bard, that meant…that meant...that meant she was wro--

"... but Bo...angin' Bugbear Babe over there saved you with Harp's magic potion."

Yes! Yes! Harp Strum blurted out, setting Gristle down with a happy bob of her head. Smoothing her talons over his scaly head, she affectionately petted Gristle. Harp’s magic potion made Gristle Get-Better! Get-Better!

It was sneaky, yes, and it was certainly sly, of course, but Harp Strum decided to accept the credit everyone was giving her--that she did, in fact, knew all along that it was a health potion she carried. It was better not to break their hearts with the truth, she decided, as they were so proud of her. And truthfully, Clever Harp Strum was a much better title than Lucky Harp Strum anyways.

As Gristle stumbled close to a pile of ooze, Harp Strum set to work with putting her things back in her bag. Collecting all her baubles and pink men clues from the floor, as well as the empty vial that housed the healing potion. She turned it into her talons, admiring its craft, before a blue bubbling pile of ooze caught her attention. Harp Strum looked to the empty vial then to the dead blue slime. A terrible, awful, no-good idea started to form in her feathered head.

Slinking closer to the pile, Harp Strum stooped low to try and delicately scoop some into the vial, unaware that even Gristle thought touching the dead slimes was too stupid even for him. All the while, Harp Strum decided to give her two-cents on the babe debate, also unaware of the hole her and Gristle very much dug for An’mal. Pardon me! Babe means gorgeous! Used on pretty ladies and pretty men! Dagg is very much a babe! Strong arms!" Harp Strum stopped her dangerous quest to horde the deadliest of blues to gesture at her feathered chest, making a wide, suggestive motion with her talons. Biiiiig plumage!

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Last edited by Strangemund; Mar 12th, 2021 at 01:36 PM.
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  #102  
Old Mar 12th, 2021, 10:24 AM
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Day 1

Gristle was alive!

And conscious now. And that seemed to be the main focus of the group as they looked down upon their presumed leader. A leader who saw himself as the lowest follower among them.

With that minor miracle obtained, Harp took it upon herself to get her hands... err, talons dirty. The Kenku managed to get just a bit of residual slime upon herself as she sunk the now empty vile into the remnants of the blue slime mold that had survived the longest of the group. A few specs of slime stuck to her feathers, but the vial was full. With stopper in place, and the rest of her items put back into her pack along with the new vial, she was ready to move on, along with the rest of the group.

Given their sense of urgency, and motivation to get to Yddraixl as soon as possible, they all set off on their continued singular path. Though their going wasn't completely an easy one. Early along in their trek, they felt the familiar rumble of earth moving. Presumably another tunnel collapse caused by one of the intruders that they were currently racing against - based on what felt like its direction. Or at least the direction that the slight sound associated with the vibrations seemed to be emanating from.

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The group remembered the words of Pilfer. This was a straight shot to their destination. But the path itself had plenty of twists and turns to it. They were currently going around a bend in the path when they came to an interesting sight. A split in the paths.

To the left the tunnel seemed to continue along the walls still showing the same looks and feel that they had been used to this whole time. But to the right, almost straight, if they chose to not turn with the path, was what looked like a new tunnel. Perhaps the whatever forces that the other group was using cause this side effect. A new secondary path that the group could chose to go through. The tunnel definitely looked new, and as they approached, a few pebbles, and pieces of dirt continued to settle into position. There was even that smell of newly dug earth to go along with it.

Looking into the tunnel showed that it didn't really have it's own light source like their currently path. And it seemed to definitely be undisturbed, if they group could go by the few cobwebs that seemed to be scattered here and there along this new path's walls and ceiling. There might have even been a few scattered among the uneven ground that looked to be the the hallmark of this new possible path.

OOGMStones: 8 minutes, 30 seconds left.

So... What do you do? Which way do you go?

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  #103  
Old Mar 12th, 2021, 12:03 PM
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An'mal
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Name: An'mal
 

 

 


Now, while An'mal's author did know what a moniker was, An'mal himself had no idea. For a fairly witless bugbear who grew up in a swamp and became a man amidst a small gang of music loving rebels in a conquered hobbit village, his vocabulary was decent. He had spent the last several years travelling with orcish merchants - they'd met a lot of folk and exchanged a lot of words. A lot of words had stuck. Khu'pa, merchant, mentor, tutor and surrogate father to An'mal, would often call his wife Aleese, 'Babe', especially when they were being playful, warm and frisky. Aleese always seemed pleased by the name, so An'mal was sure it was a good thing to call a female. But now, with Bossy Lass sizing him up and questioning its meaning, An'mal began to have certain doubts.

In the face of doubt, An'mal gave Dagg his warmest smile. "Yes, I'm sure that Monica is also a babe." He nodded at Gristle's definition. He wasn't about to contradict someone clearly so knowledgeable. He continued to smile warmly as Harp Strum added her own definition. "Big plumage" he added, giving a final nod, certain that his companions had kindly clarified the mean of 'babe' perfectly. Bossy Lass would no doubt look pleased any moment now.

Time passed.

Bossy Lass was taking her time to look pleased, and there were eggs and Ydraixl's in need of aid. So still smiling warmly, An'mal began moving forward down the passageway, the straight shot towards the hatchery. When they reached the divergence in the path An'mal didn't even pause. He didn't really even think about it. He had been told to go straight and he would arrive to the place he needed to go. No one had spoken about going down some random hole caused by the recent collapses the underground area was suffering. Taking that path never crossed his mind, so he just sort of strolled down the other path as though the alternative didn't even exist. He was a cooperative sort of bugbear though; should somone call him to halt or suggest the fresh path should be invesigated for a valid reason, An'mal would pause and wait until Gristle told them to pull their head in and stick to the plan.
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Last edited by jbear; Mar 12th, 2021 at 12:09 PM.
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  #104  
Old Mar 16th, 2021, 02:46 PM
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Gristle
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An'mal headed down the older-looking tunnel, which meant it was the correct tunnel. An'mal was very smart and very big, and he knew a lot about words and parrots and ghosts, so clearly he knew which way to go.

Gristle, therefore, pretended the alternate entrance didn't exist and toddled off after him.

"Come on!" he said cheerily to the others. "Gotta go finds us some eggs and Yddraxil!"
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  #105  
Old Mar 16th, 2021, 04:16 PM
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Baruuk Talonface
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Baruuk couldn't help but crack a small smile. Gristle had been badly hurt, the dangerous oozes and slimes had left them all injured to one degree or another, and it had all been his fault. They were still on a race against the pink skins to reach Yddraxil, and this whole affair had cost them precious time they could not spare. But still, he smiled. The group's antics were infectious.

He was a little puzzled by the some of the jargon being thrown around, though. The common tongue was easy enough to master, but sometimes it was hard to keep everything straight with so many people talking at once, throwing strange phrases and words around, seemingly at random. Luckily, Harp's helpful hand gestures left her meaning entirely clear. Big plumage indeed.

Baruuk shook his head in bemusement. It was an interesting dynamic that had grown up around this motley crew, thrown together by happenstance and opportunity. Or was it? Was there some kind of system Yddraxil and her people used to make these duty assignments? Perhaps they knew what they were doing, selecting those that would be most likely to build their own bonds. Like a family, you didn't get to pick them yourself, but they were always a part of you. The bugbear looked around at the group as they prepared to set out. Was he part of this artificial clan? He had been content to watch the banter bounce back and forth between the more talkative members of the party. But if he wanted to fit in, he needed to do more. He needed to reach out.

Baruuk shouldered his bow and set out after the leaders. "Let's go, babes."



An'mal and Gristle walked boldly straight forward, but Baruuk found his eyes drawn to the side path. He slowed his pace and looked around at the others, pointing to the new tunnel. "This looks recent... Do you think it opened up with all the shakes we've been feeling? It might be a shortcut..." He shrugged and seemed a little indecisive. "I know we're in a rush, but we might want to check it out."

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