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  #31  
Old Oct 23rd, 2020, 01:19 PM
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Ernest
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What was he doing again? The spell because Retry is dumbfaded from his paw as the cat zoned out for a moment to the babble of the river and the shouts of his companions.

Something about the injured rat... Eat it? No. Never. Then what?

"Bah, I need a nap.." Ernest concluded as Brijida made her declaration of Tolle's fateful encounter with the water. "Be sure to paddle!" he called out half-heartedly.


 

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  #32  
Old Oct 23rd, 2020, 08:51 PM
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We clawed, we chained, our hearts in vain / We jumped, never asking why

Quote:
Originally Posted by lydklein View Post
A grin across her face, she carefully made her way over to where the trolls disgusting clothing hung upon Birchfell. She stared him directly in the eyes, tilted her head, listening to the horrid screeching of his "words". Without warning, the familiar leaped up into the air and brought her forepaws down upon the tree trunk hard. Any of the familiars who had seen he hunting voles in the winter would have recognized the technique. Brijida was having fun with he target.

"Bathtime!!"
GM - MechanicsHere's what I sent lydklein when they asked about potentially pouncing on the birch:
  • To break the tree in such a way that the troll can use it to float - DC 10 Fierce
  • To knock the troll off the branch and into the water - DC 9 Fierce
  • To give the troll a scare - DC 7 Fierce
  • To bounce the branch in such a way that something pops out of the troll's pocket - DC 9 Sly

Tolle, (formerly) a troll
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Tolle's look of steely resolve withers, his yellow eyes growing huge and round with disbelief. The vixen leaps into the air, impossibly high and perfectly silent, tracing a graceful parabola of pure animal instinct. Up-up-up, twist... and down, nose-first and gaining momentum fast--too fast--until, at the last possible instant, she extends her paws and Whap!

The old birch flexes, it's farthest point dipping low, nearly skimming the water's surface. With a shocked Whoop! the troll is dunked. When the tree rebounds, he is dredged up and out of the icy water gasping and shouting all manner of obscenities. Tolle sputters, grinding the water from his eyes. "Oh, what a great 'elp you lot've turned out t--"

RRRRRIIIIIIIIIIIIPPP!

The troll's trousers finally concede defeat, giving way at the seat and plunging him back into the rushing waters of Bluewater Beck. Tolle disappears under the torrent, lost.

Quite suddenly relieved of some twenty-two stone worth of troll, Birchfell springs skyward with an audible Twang! The tree heaves and wobbles wildly for several seconds, threatening to eject poor Brijida.

GM - Mechanics againlydklein will need to meet or beat a DC 8 Fierce to avoid Brijida being launched into the river.
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  #33  
Old Oct 24th, 2020, 10:51 AM
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Take me to the river, (don’t) drop me in the water

GMEver nimble and just as clever, Brijida anticipates the sudden release of stored energy. By hopping as the tree rises and setting her claws as it falls, the fox is able to deftly ride out the undulations until Birchfell, after a few exhilarating seconds, comes to to rest at its new, slightly higher, neutral position over the river.

Below, in the water, there is no sign of Tolle. Several breathless moments pass. Bluewater Beck continues its ceaseless roaring.

Tolle, a troll
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Then, just when all hope seems lost, a geyser of white spray and flailing limbs erupts from the river’s surface. Tolle thrashes and wails, shrieking for help, then simply... stands up.

“I, ah... Er... Heh,” he sputters, his eyes darting from face to face. He lifts his arms out of the water to drip-drip-drip while he cranes his neck, gauging the depth. He purses his lips and nods his approval. The water comes up to the bottom of his ribs, at best.

“Heh!” Tolle offers the Familiars an apologetic wince. “Don’t I feel a right knob.” And then, just like that, he slaps the surface of the water with both hands and shouts, “Oh, well!”

Now beaming, he begins a laborious trudge back toward shore, kicking up great sheets of icy spray. “Oi,” he bellows, “come’n ‘ave a cuddle, then, eh? Ol’ Tolle always keeps ‘is word!” The troll approaches the animals, arms wide, ready to scoop them all up and ferry them to the far side.

GM - MechanicsEach animal will have to make a DC 6 Fierce roll to cling to Tolle and/or one another, thereby avoiding any mishaps while fording the river.
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  #34  
Old Oct 24th, 2020, 12:17 PM
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Beau
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Beau instinctively drew back as the giant troll approached, fearful of its loud, unintelligible language and massive, spread out arms, which seemed ready to scoop up all her friends. For a moment, she considered running, her tail lashing anxiously as her panic mounted.

No, she then thought. In spite of her still trembling whiskers, Beau cautiously advanced. She had been the one to suggest freeing the troll- to suggest trusting it. True, it was a different thing altogether to trust the massive creature now that it was within arm's reach, but she couldn't go back on it now.

Besides, Abigail counted on them crossing the river quickly- and Beau couldn't bear failing the witch. Not again...

Holding her breath- both from fear and from the amazingly foul odour wafting from Tolle, Beau approached the troll. She stood up on her hind paws, reaching upward to incidicate she was ready to be carried- hoping her destination was the other side of the river, and not the troll's gaping maw...


 
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  #35  
Old Oct 24th, 2020, 02:35 PM
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Brie
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Brijida’s actions made Brie jump up and down with excitement. Ah, to be a fox. There are few smarter or nimbler animals than a fox and our fox is the best there is!

The rat’s excitement soon gave way to apprehension however when he realized that Tolle the troll was proposing to actually carry the familiars to the opposite riverbank… in his huge arms that ended in hands full of spiky hair and claws as large as the rat himself! What made things even worse was that he intended to carry them all at once. Should Tolle trip or slip as he crossed the river, which wasn’t unlikely at all, all of them would end up in Bluewater Beck.

Brie was ready to turn tail and bid Tolle „adieu“, hoping to never lay eyes upon him again -or smell him ever again, which was even more important-, when Beau seemingly gulped and started slowly approaching the troll. The dark rat looked at the snow-white one with mixed feelings. She is so brave… and foolhardy. What to do? What to do? With a small squeek Brie accepted his fate and approached the troll as well. He couldn’t leave Beau to face the brute alone. What if she needed his help?

"Follow my lead", he whispered to her and jumped upon Tolle‘s outstretched arms. Despite his decision of accepting the troll’s proposal, he could never trust in the clumsy troll’s skill in crossing the river without incident. Losing no time he started climbing the troll’s arm, shoulder and then neck, to finally take his place at the top of his head. Firmly grabbing the troll’s ridiculous, but in this case practical, topknot, Brie beckoned Beau to follow him. "It’s safer up here and we can even attempt to steer him if he messes around. I’m sure he doesn’t mind."

OOC actionsBrie holds onto the troll successfully (Result: 10).


 
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Last edited by Elanir; Oct 24th, 2020 at 02:36 PM.
  #36  
Old Oct 28th, 2020, 01:01 AM
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Brijida
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"Aaaiaaaiaaiii" She cried when as she watched the big ol' troll come close, the water rolling from his body. The big guy actually wanted to carry them across. Brijida held very still on the still bouncing tree. As the rats made their way over, she bared her teeth at the memory of the sensory assault
her sniffing had led her towards. If They were nrave enough to try trusting him she could put up with more of his stench. Gathering herself up she leapt up onto his shoulders. It would be the best place to to be if he tried to betray the little ones. She could bite his throat easily from there. She waited quietly from her new perch, watching for Ernest and Raindrop's choices.
OOC and STATSShe rolled an 11 to hold on.
 
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  #37  
Old Oct 28th, 2020, 08:21 AM
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Ernest
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The tom sat idly watching the scene unfold in the way most cats do. Only recoiling slightly at the falling droplets of water from the splash of Tolle. "Wonderful. Congratulations on your freedom." the black cat mewed as the troll offered to ferry them across the waters. Relaying the information to his familiar kin Ernest looked and saw the worry upon most of them.

The apprehension of the others was understandable, yet they were true to their word and thus was the troll. As one should carry themselves. The dark rat took the pilots seat at the head of the troll whilst the light one waited to be carried.

The troll, at this point, was utterly soaked from his time in the river. Ernest's tail flicked in displeasure of the thought. "....for the Mistress." he reminded himself taking a seat by Beau waiting to be plucked from the soft earth.

"A noble creed to live by, Tolle." the tom mewed in feline referencing Tolle's attempt to keep his words. "All behave whilst he carries us lest we take a dip."
OOCErnest just barely hanging in there with a 7

 

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  #38  
Old Oct 30th, 2020, 10:42 PM
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Ol’ Tolle always keeps ‘is word

Tolle, a troll
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Tolle squirms and giggles as Brie scrambles up his shoulder, vaults up-and-over his ear, and finally settles on his crown. "He-hee! Steady, Master Rat!" Tolle cries in his native language. "Mind them ricky-tickly littl' paws, eh?" Brie doesn't understand a word of the rough-sounding troll-speak, but the warning is clear enough.

Next is Brijida, who leaps up onto Tolle's shoulders and settles around his neck, where she lies panting softly in his ear. "Whoo!" he gasps, then takes a moment to admire the vixen draped over his collar. "Only the finest furs fer ol' Tolle, hah! Ready fer the opera, ha-hah! Kiddin' a'course, me foxy lady. A jest, a jest!" Probably for the best, Brijida has no idea what Tolle is saying, only that he seems very pleased with himself.

Tolle then stoops to scoop up Beau and Ernest in his great gangly arms. He tucks the bombay firmly in one armpit (mercifully, the stink has been diminished somewhat thanks to the impromptu bath in Bluewater Beck) and then deposits Beau atop his head near Brie, quipping, "Rats 'f a feather'n all that!"

Finally, Tolle turns to Raindrops on Roses, who is sits, unmoving, on the river bank. He gives the hare a gentle come-here wave and a series of encouraging nods. When Raindrops doesn't budge, the troll frowns, then stoops as low as he can without unseating the other Familiars. "Oi! Bunny! We're off. Hop-hop-hop up'ere, or swim!" Raindrops continues staring across the water with a faraway look in his eyes. If he understands the troll's intent, he makes no sign - nary the twitch of a single whisker.

"Right, then," Tolle grunts, snatching the hare up from his place on the shore by the ears. With Raindrops dangling from his fist and the others clinging to his hulking frame, the troll makes an abrupt about-face and begins slogging across the river. The rushing water is no match for the Brobdingnagian humanoid, and all the Familiars are able to hold fast as he splashes and curses his way to the far shore. Once on dry land again, he flops on his rump with a weary sigh and allows the animals to disembark.

After making a show of wringing out his tattered sleeves, Tolle reaches into his shirt and produces his lucky totem, which he blows dry with a series of sharp puffs. He holds the charm close to his nose, slowly turning it in his fingertips. At first glance, it appears to be a smallish ball of gnarled roots, hung from a fob of plaited leather. Taking a long last look, the troll mutters, "Ol’ Tolle always keeps ‘is word." His gaze suddenly shifts to Beau. "Oi, rat," he gestures to her, so that she will understand his meaning, "give us that foot." Taking her injured paw gently between thumb and forefinger, Tolle presses the charm to Beau's wound. Her paw is obscured by a puff of warm steam, which, upon dissipating, reveals healthy pink skin where moments before there was an angry cut. "See, love?" he asks, gesturing again to Beau, "That there'll fix any boo-boo short'f death i’self." He grins, then turns to regard the other Familiars, scanning each of their faces in turn.

He points a knobby finger at Raindrops on Roses. "You mus' be th'sensible one'f the bunch, eh?" he asks, offering the trinket to the hare before quickly snatching it away again. "On secon' thought," he says with a wink, "perhaps Master Cat ought'a hold onto it." In one deft motion, he pushes Raindrops aside and slips the leather cord over Ernest's head, so that the totem hangs around his neck like a collar. "Very 'andsome, Master Cat," he purrs. Up close, the Familiars discover that the lucky charm is not, in fact, a ball of gnarled roots, but a desiccated paw, curled into a clutched fist - probably from some unfortunate raccoon or possum. Heedless of the animals' shock and disgust, Tolle bows his head and gives a solemn, "Yer welcome."

With an air of finality the troll claps his hands and settles back on his elbows. "Now, if it's all th'same t'you lot, 'ol Tolle's gonna take a wee lie-down, an' catch 'is breath." He settles himself flat on the stones, folding his hands over his chest. "Don't mind me none," he calls, absently waving a hand at the Familiars. Within moments he is dozing, his snores clear to hear, even over the roar of the river.

GM - MechanicsAs Tolle indicated, the magical raccoon paw will heal any injury on contact, but cannot reverse death. Using the paw does not count as casting a spell, and is therefore not inherently dangerous. The paw has 1d4+1 charges remaining, after healing Beau.
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Last edited by Mallothi; Feb 11th, 2022 at 11:46 PM.
  #39  
Old Oct 31st, 2020, 09:19 AM
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Beau
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Despite herself, Beau instinctively flinched when the troll's coarse hands closed around her. For a moment she was afraid she had misjudged Tolle as he brought her close to his face- and, by extension, his gaping, molodorous maw. Fortunately the troll's hands moved past its face, and soon she found herself next to Brie, holding on for dear life to the troll's hair.

The trek across the river was no less unnerving for little Beau, who's little heart beat rapidly as they crossed the water. Truthfully, she and Brie were no doubt the best swimmers among their little group- but even Beau didn't like her chances facing the roiling waters below.

Once on the other side, the troll suddenly moved towards Beau with what seemed to be a knot of grass, dirt and twigs. Beau didn't fully trust the troll getting so close to her now that their business was concluded, but on the other hand... He had been true to his word so far. And when the white rat noticed the tingling sensation of magic in the lucky charm, she felt too intrigued to draw back.

The charm mended the torn skin on her paw, and Beau, in surprise, looked from her now healthy paw to the Troll and back. 'Thank you, mister Tolle,' she said quietly, feeling more at ease with the large creature now that he had shown himself to practice the healing arts.

That feeling lasted exactly as long as it took for her to notice the lucky charm was not a ball of grass and roots, but a dried out husk of a raccoon's paw. Beau's eyes went wide- she had heard stories of Merry, the Milldraven raccoon, who had been able to heal grievous wounds with a touch ever since getting his paw stuck in a healing draught. But she had hoped never to come across one of those paws, which humans- and, apparently, trolls- seemed to collect.

Swallowing hard, Beau drew back a little, keeping her snout to the ground and her eyes away from the talisman. 'Ernest,' she asked timidly. 'Can you, ah... Can you thank him for me? And- and maybe ask him, if he's going to be here when we get back? If he can help us cross the bridge on our way back... It would mean we wouldn't have to get past the bridge guarded by humans.'


 
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  #40  
Old Nov 1st, 2020, 05:26 PM
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Brie
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Brie had to admit that he had been wrong. Tolle the Troll wasn’t such a bad fellow after all. Clumsy? Sure. Stinky? Most certainly. But bad? No. In exchange for setting him free the creature of legend had ferried all the familiars across the river safely and had even kept his promise of giving them his lucky charm. And what a charm it was! It healed Beau’s bleeding paw in mere moments, making the mishap of the angry branch and its vicious thorns nothing more than a half-forgotten memory. In his neverending rumblings Drops -or had it been Mother?- had mentioned something about trolls having the power to regenerate after even the most serious of wounds. Could it be that each one of them carried a similar lucky charm with the ability to heal them? That was a question Brie would probably never get an answer to, but it didn’t really matter. Despite Tolle being a decent bloke, the rat wouldn’t count on his siblings being as „gentletrolllike“ as he. That being the case, he never wanted to set eyes upon another troll as long as he lived.

Looking at the charm dangling from the cat’s neck, Ernest being obviously very annoyed at having had his private space thusly invaded, Brie grinned. He had been right about something at least. The lucky charm hadn’t been a rabbit’s leg but a raccoon’s paw. The difference was minor for everyone but a rabbit or raccoon and he was neither.

"So, do we go on? Briji, do you recognize this part of the forest?" The rat looked expectantly at the fox. It was once more time for the „Vixen Express“ and after his recent experience with the troll, Brie suddenly looked at the rodents‘ means of transportation in a much more favorable light.


 
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  #41  
Old Nov 1st, 2020, 07:58 PM
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Brijida
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Shaking herself vigorously, and sneezing more than a few times to clear thw unwelcome smells from her nose, Brijida snuffled about the ground some. Finding the scents all very familiar, she smiled at Brie and jumped in delight.

"Yes, yes! This is the path. Come, come! Climb on up and off we trot. We shouldn't delay. It isn't a short journey and we don't know what we will face when we find that wretched hunter. Up, up, B&B. And hold tight. Stay close you two." The latter was said to the Cat and the Hare. An unnecessary command, but given nonetheless. Brijida was excited to continue the journey.
OOCI will add my pic and stats later. Brijida will let tuw rats climb aboard as before and lead the way as soon as all are ready.
 
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  #42  
Old Nov 2nd, 2020, 02:01 PM
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Ernest
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Ernest, needless to say, would never consider himself clean again. No amount of magic nor natures' waters would wash away that perceived stench of troll armpit. Even if he were clean and smelled of roses the bombay knew that stench would supersede his sense of cleanliness for whatever remaining lives he held.

Providing as a mediator for the rodent so she may be healed Ernest was then bestowed with the trinket. "Fitting." were the only words that came to his mind looking at the gnarled 'roots' that hung from his neck. "Thank you, Tolle. I am utterly speechless... I truly am."

As the meek Beau approached with a question she, understandably, averted looking at him. "Mm?" the tom looked to the rat listening to the full question then looked down at the talisman once more "Yes... that would likely be wise." agreeing the cat looked from the healed rat towards the troll laying down returning to his natural tongue.

"Say, Tolle-" the snores were his answer. A flick of his tail announced his annoyance at the situation. "Terribly sorry, but we'll just have to risk it for now. Lest we decide to wake a sleeping troll who has repaid whatever debt he held with us."

Further discussion was proven unnecessary by the infectious vigor of Brijida as she was rearing to go. "I will do what I can." Ernest agreed to keep moving onward, doing what he could to keep up with the fox and the hare.

 

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  #43  
Old Nov 3rd, 2020, 12:08 PM
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Beau
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Beau looked slightly dejected upon discovering the troll had fallen asleep, but then considered that he must have been very tired. Wading through the water, not to mention hanging above the water for Abigail knows how long... 'Of course,' she said quietly. 'how silly of me. Let him rest for now- he earned his sleep.'

Then she scurried over to Brijida, Brie already sitting snugly between the fox's shoulders. 'Are you sure you're not too tired?' Beau asked cautiously before clambering on.


 
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  #44  
Old Nov 4th, 2020, 10:55 PM
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Two roads diverged in a wood, and I / I took the one less traveled by

Quote:
Originally Posted by lydklein View Post
Shaking herself vigorously, and sneezing more than a few times to clear thw unwelcome smells from her nose, Brijida snuffled about the ground some. Finding the scents all very familiar, she smiled at Brie and jumped in delight.

"Yes, yes! This is the path. Come, come! Climb on up and off we trot. We shouldn't delay. It isn't a short journey and we don't know what we will face when we find that wretched hunter. Up, up, B&B. And hold tight. Stay close you two."
GM
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And so the Familiars strike out once again, plunging back into the colorful riot of Sweetbriar Forest, following the Deer Path toward the village of Whitebridge. The late morning sun warms the animals' backs as they trot over crunching leaves and black, muddy earth. The air is cool and crisp, and the miles fly easily underpaw. The cohort travels at a steady 2.5 mphcat's pace for an uninterrupted 3 hours. Only 2 miles of travel remain until the Familiars will reach the Impossibly High Stone Wall that marks the boundary of the village.

It is early afternoon when the animals reach a place that Brijida knows from her previous excursions through the woods - a place where the Deer Path veers perilously close to the Forest Road, and humankind. Sure enough, as they near the troublesome section of trail, the sound of human shouting can be heard, carried clear and sharp over the autumn air. Something about the sound is odd, Brijida realizes: it's coming from the wrong direction. Instead of emanating from the road as the fox would expect, the commotion is coming from deeper within the forest. There are men in the woods.

As the Familiars creep further down the path, other, more troubling, sounds join the chorus. Monstrous howls and horrible caterwauling ring out over the growing din, sending chills down the animals' spines. The scent of woodsmoke, thick and sickly-sweet, permeates the surrounding forest. Unwelcome memories of their cherished mistress, blasted to cinders, float within the reeking blue fog. The source of the smoke and the men responsible are yet out of sight, gathered in a clearing just noticeable through the trees.

All of a sudden, a lone, reedy voice cuts through the bedlam, silencing all the others. The voice calls out in a half-human, half-animal dialect not unlike the familiar's shared language, "Burn! Burn, thou craven, earth-vexing foot-lickers! Hahaha-HONK! HONK!"

GM - MechanicsThe Familiars currently stand on the Deer Path. To one side is the Forest Road, several hundred yards through the woods and completely obscured by trees. To the other side there is presumably a clearing, suggested by the bright sunlight peeking between the trees. The men (and other creatures) are not visible from the Familiars' current position, but they can be clearly heard moving about the clearing.

Also, each PC should subtract 1 point of DANGER from their total, now that your critters are no longer near the river.
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Last edited by Mallothi; Nov 4th, 2020 at 11:07 PM.
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Old Nov 5th, 2020, 08:19 AM
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Beau
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'Oh no,' Beau whimpers at the sound of- of what, exactly? Men? Animals? Whatever the case, it seemed someone was in danger. The scent of smoke and flame brought back memories of the last time someone was in danger- when Abigail had been burnt. Then, Beau had done nothing, her inaction filling her with guilt. Perhaps this time... This time she could do something?

'I'm... I'm just going to take a little peek,' she told the others, before scurrying in the direction of the sound, making sure to stay low and well-hidden in the grass and underbrush.


 
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Characters: Anchor, Selanet, Aramil, Mhurren, Hazel
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