Game Thread 1. Misty Mountain Hop - RPG Crossing
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Old 07-08-2015, 12:55 AM
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1. Misty Mountain Hop

The Campaign Begins
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Pennants snap in a frigid wind. Five hundred soldiers have mustered here, just north of Glarondar, where steep trails led up into the Dragonjaw Mountains. The raucous shouts and clamor of metal that accompany such a host have been swept from the hill by that selfsame wind.

At the hill's crest, a clutch of officers sit atop their horses, gleaming steel against a gray sky. Messengers come and go. Junior officers jostle for position while senior officers issue order after order.

On the hillside, the formations shift restlessly, waiting for the vanguard to begin the climb. Logistics have delayed this day by two weeks already: the supply wagons were too wide to negotiate the mountain trails. A feverish effort to retrofit all the wagons into smaller carts has led up to this muster, but the delays continued to plague the army.

At last, a horn sounds. Its bright, brassy note hangs in the air for a long minute; having waited so long, it takes a moment to respond appropriately. Then the lead element heads out, beginning their ascent. Glittering like scales on a snake, the Simballine First Expeditionary Army winds its way up through the switchbacks.

Lieutenant Falkrest rides down from the hill several minutes later. He hitches his horse to the company's cart, then steps up onto the flatbed to address the unit. "Griffin Company! We have been given the right middle flank. When we crest Mount Dannersfang, we will take the right-hand path! Our journey will commence momentarily. It will end when Emmech stands free!"

One of the sergeants raises a cheer, and the company follows suit, a ragged shout of defiance torn away by the wind. Then Fury Company starts forward, Gryphon Company follows, and the campaign has begun.


The High Country
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The army's progress through the mountains was little better than a crawl, a scant ten miles a day. The thin air and treacherous footing made each of those ten miles hard-won. More than a few soldiers have questioned the wisdom of this route, though generally out of earshot from the officer corps.

True to the lieutenant's words, Griffon Company split right at the top of Dannersfang. Forces were arrayed across a half-dozen trails, occasionally crossing paths. Griffon Company sticks to the northmost paths, trailing a quarter mile or so behind another light infantry unit. These paths tend to be narrow, forcing single or double file formations.

Four rugged days in, Falkrest meets with a messenger. As he watches the man leave, a troubled frown creasing the lieutenant's face. Resupply efforts have become entangled. Supplies must be tightly rationed until the logistics can be sorted out again. Sergeants let it be known that forage may be permitted, but everyone understood that forage would be hard to come by with the whole army passing through.

With ten days' travel still ahead, things have begun to look bleak. Wouldn't be the army if it wasn't, right?


 
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Old 07-08-2015, 11:45 PM
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Marack Dovorson (Application) (Sheet)

Marack only *HRMP*'ed when the loud sergeant declared foraging allowed.

Never knew foraging wasn't allowed, Marack darkly humored himself.

At six feet tall, pale, with greying brown hair and bushy facial hair, Marack Dovorson stood apart from the smaller, slimmer, darker Who I, perhaps incorrectly, imagine having a slightly southeast Asian appearance.Aglarondians. If he minded this, he didn't show it. In fact, he showed little emotion, little of anything, to any one. He ate separately, walked separately (as much as he could given the Aglarondian fondess for formations), and talked to no one. Whether he preferred this or simply accepted it was hard to say.

Marack kicked aside a rock partially covering a hole in the rockface. Within it lay two eggs upon a tangle of dried grasses: a nest of a mountain hawk. How Marack had known this lay behind the stone, or whether Tymora had simply blessed the foreigner, one couldn't say. He squatted and, with a quick nab, acquired the two eggs. Standing, he then shook the eggs close to his ear and smelled them deeply. Apparently satisfied, the hairy warrior lifted up his chin, opened his maw skyward, and split apart each egg above his mouth, their contents making for an enviable snack. Then, Marack threw away the shells and continued his march.

All without so much as a smile.

 
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Old 07-09-2015, 08:08 AM
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How not to treat your sergeantA tiefling, red as perfectly-cooked lobster, was sitting cross-legged on a mule-drawn cart, when one of her fellow sergeants made the supply problem known. She was in the middle of her habitual meditation. Foraging? I'll leave that to the others. They need the extra food more than I. Besides, the rations are great. In fact, they taste like heaven... definitely way better than what I used to eat at the quarry. Heh. Stop lying, Trouble told herself. You wish you can eat monastery dishes, right now.

From nearby, she heard two young spearmen snickering. Trouble opened her left eye a little and saw that they were staring at her. In one swift motion, she turned her head towards the teenage soldiers, opened her eyes wide and Thaumaturgymade her irises glow bright red. Out of shock, one of them stumbled and tripped the other. The two rolled a little down the slope. Trouble smiled, very pleased with the minor distraction, and went back to meditating.

The day's not so bad after all, she thought.

 

Last edited by Osse; 07-10-2015 at 12:23 AM. Reason: Image Updated
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Old 07-09-2015, 10:38 AM
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Denovar was not surprised by the call to allow foraging when it came. He had expected it, and somewhat looked forward to it. "Foraging, like our ancient ancestors is a primitive duty. One which separates the boys from the men. It requires a keen eye, a sense of survival and a bit of luck.... unless of course your name is Denovar Highwater." With a goofy smile he motions to the nearest soldier equipped with a bow. "Common man, Sarg said go find some food, KnowhutImean?" He draws his bow and holds it upside down and in the wrong hand putting on a charade as if he doesn't know how to use it. "I bet your good with that thing. Maybe you can teach me how to shoot!"

Taking the young soldier off the trail a bit, Denovar keeps the one sided conversation gong. "It's army life great? Everyone is so cheerful in the mornings, the food is fantastic and we even get to poke a few holes in the bad guys! But you got to be careful with those bow fingers, I mean you shot too many times and you will rub the skin right off em. Then it's PAIN city for the rest of the day." He keeps the head-splittingly annoying chatter up for a short trek, then turns around. In a tree behind them a small squirrel is perched. "How about a little bet, five silver to who ever hits that little critter first. I'm ready to pay up, I bet your really good." The shot of course is absurd. The branches provide some cover for the animal, and more importantly a missed arrow at that angle had the potential to fly back towards camp. "What? You don't think its a good shot? Your scared of hitting someone?" Ignoring the young ones protests, Denovar draws his bow, takes aim and fires.

Quick Stats
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Denovar Highwater
Level: 3 Ranger (Hunter)
HP: 28/28, AC: 14 (16 with shield) Speed: 30ft
Stats: Str 12, Dex 16, Con 14, Int 8, Wis 13, Cha 9
Passive Perception: 14 Feats:: Sharpshooter
Spell Slots 1st 3/3
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Old 07-09-2015, 10:45 AM
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Rhessa
Come join the army, they said.

Well, admittedly not so much in her case. It was this or dancing among the winds on a hangman's noose, and that was one dance she could easily refuse. At least they let her off her leash by now. Kill enough people, become trustworthy! The army doesn't work as differently from a pirate crew as they'd love to pretend to.

The pay is great, they said.

Rhessa's pouch is near empty. It doesn't help that she suspects the thrice-blasted quartermaster to charge her double for the tiniest items of luxury.

You'll be fed, they said.

So are pigs. Though pigs at least got some vegetables on occasions. Or maybe the grey mulch last night had been a vegetable? It had seemed sentient enough to be meat.

Enjoy the camaraderie, they said.

The dark-haired sorceress casts a look towards Marack. Yeah, crossing that off her list as well.

Then the silent, towering foreigner grabs two eggs and cracks them above his mouth. Rhessa stares in horror, then disgust, then shakes her head and keeps on marching. Maybe the foragers would find something decent tonight, and hopefully they'll actually get a chance to cook it.


 

Last edited by Vex; 07-09-2015 at 10:46 AM.
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Old 07-13-2015, 03:31 PM
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The Hungry MarchAusterity measures are never popular. Rarely do the people who made them necessary bear their brunt. The rationing is no more popular, nor does it affect the officer corps as profoundly. By day eight, rations have run out and resupply efforts are still bogged down with snow in the high passes. Tempers are short and helmets are loose.

At first, fights are common. They grow increasingly more vicious, with increasingly less cause, until at about day eight. By then rations have run out. A handful of men have succumbed to hunger, and lassitude sets in up and down the ranks. Even the officers are starting to look thin.

On day ten, the supply train catches up, with salt pork and dried peas in quantity to supply the missing days and dead men. Quartermasters dispense the bounty eagerly and generously. Many soldiers eat too quickly for their shriveled stomachs; a half-day's march is lost while the army fills its stomach.


Coming Down the MountainLate-season snows are still a problem on day twelve, with the army two days behind schedule due to logistics and weather. Descent will begin when the army breaches the Nabbingdar Pass, and over the following two days wind down Mount Kraggoth to the river. From there, the army will build rafts, then cross into the mountains on the other side.

The morning dawns clear after the evening's snow, and the army continues on through the night's several inches of accumulation. Near midday, as Griffon Company moves into the pass, signs of battle litter the trailside. Blood staining the snow and the shattered bones of broken skeletons. Broken weapons. Mounds of snow that mark Aglarond's fallen.

Advance elements are apparently running into some resistance, which concerns Lieutenant Falkrest. In a quick conference with his sergeants, he explains that this approach was supposed to be clear, that the company should be watchful. "The advance elements are encountering resistance, so we should be alert. We're far enough back that I doubt we'll see action until we're out of the hills, but everyone keep weapons ready."


 
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Old 07-13-2015, 05:04 PM
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Marack Dovorson (Application) (Sheet)

For some, the army's logistical problems brought suffering and, even, death. For Marack, they brought annoyance (Training in Survival FTW! for he found suffice berries, eggs, roots, and such) and disgust. No wonder Thay holds this Emmech place, he brooded. These Aglarondians can't even march an army there.

Not that Marack held any special qualification to render such judgments. Neverwinter had been, strategically speaking, a holding rather than offensive action. And he had been a shepherd and woodsman by trade, herding goats and sheep around the foothills, trapping in the woods, and otherwise living largely off the land. His military experience occurred when he joined the Neverwinterian militia.

After undead ransacked his forest cottage in his absence, killing his family, and carrying away their corpses.

After returning his family's bodies in undeath to Marack, his former loved ones then trying to kill him dead.

After he burned the cottage to the ground in bitter hope his wife and sons would know peace and never rise again in undeath.

Marack grunted to himself, moving along and keeping one eye on potential sources of food and one eye on the gathering of officers and noncommissioned officers. Green as grass, he thought, seeing the young leaders talk importantly amongst themselves. I'll be a Baldurian whore if more than one in ten has swung a sword in anger and more than one in hundred swung that same sword at a walking corpse.

 
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Old 07-14-2015, 02:21 AM
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Pink SnowTrouble was glad that the strict rationing was over. It's best to have everyone full of energy in this cold weather. She stopped walking to pick up a fist-sized stone, Elemental Attunementheated it up and put it inside her shirt, to help keep her warm. That's more like it.

Up ahead a spearwoman waved at her, trying to grab her attention. Trouble walked up to her and was informed that Lieutenant Falkrest called for an officers' meeting. The lieutenant showed the sergeants what lay ahead, a bloodstained snowy pass, littered with bones, weapons, and mounds likely covering the fallen bodies of Aglarond's troops. Trouble saw worry in Lieutenant Falkrest's face and he was right to be. After a few words of warning, he dismissed them.

Trouble walked back to her unit. "Brace yourselves for an ambush soldiers. Have your weapons ready.", she told them and everyone who was near enough to hear. "You may have some friends or family in the advance party. Some, if not most, of them are probably dead. If you pass near one of those snow-covered bodies", she pointed ahead, with her spear, "be prepared to fight familiar faces. The Thayan's may have reanimated them. Watch those fallen skellies too."


 

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Old 07-14-2015, 04:02 AM
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Anticipation and Pork
Rhessa's mood is sour, more so than usual. Finally there was some food, and it turned out to be salted pork which tasted suspiciously of overdue and dried pickled herring. Well, at least there was some action to look forward to.

"Hey sarge", the sorceress calls out to Trouble. "If we meet any Thayans and they have proper food with them, does that still count as foraging?"

One could only hope.

Around the sorceress, people were grabbing a variety of weapons in an attempt to resemble combat readiness. Rhessa snorts with disdain, her breath making a cloud against the cold air. At least the weather held for now, though the cold is the one thing the young sorceress so far has not complained about.

She was looking forward to the upcoming action. Fighting undead minions was vastly preferable to traipsing the mountains on half-rotten pork and surly company. Rhessa gathers her magical energies around herself, causing an unexpected wind to tussle her hair and enjoying the feeling of cold and snow on her skin.



 

Last edited by Vex; 07-14-2015 at 04:06 AM.
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Old 07-14-2015, 04:34 AM
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Thayan DelicaciesThe tiefling turned to Rhessa and said, "Sure, but I don't think we'll be facing many living Thayans. There might not be a lot of food to "forage". I'm not sure you'd enjoy Thayan food anyway. That's what I ate for half my life and it wasn't very pleasant. I think the undead would enjoy eating you though." Trouble chuckled. "Don't worry, once we get down the mountain I'll cook something special. Now focus."


 

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Old 07-14-2015, 05:06 AM
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Gnawing Appetite
"I'd rather gnaw on a reanimated bone than have another one of those delicacies rotting in the army's barrels", Rhessa mutters under her breath, not quite loud enough to be more than her usual amount insubordination.

If Trouble says to keep their eyes open, Rhessa would. The weird red-skinned demonblood might not look like much, but she's kept the company out of her namesake ever so often with good intuition and solid leadership.

And keeping her skin intact is certainly something the mostly reformed pirate sorceress appreciates.


 

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Old 07-14-2015, 08:13 AM
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Wonderful Feast"I like rations. I like squirrel stew too. I can't complain about salted pork or peas either." Denovar said to no one in particular. It seems as long as he was eating something, or even if he wasn't, he appeared happy about it. However, after traveling and preparing for so long for the offensive, Denovar was itching to put an arrow into something that had some fight in it. A few words caught his attention from the briefing meeting. As he left the briefing meeting to prepare bow and inspect his arrows, he recounts how the events will play out. "An ambush from the undead. An unlikely scenario you say? I have to agree. Slow moving, smelly, moaning rotten mounds of flesh get the drop on Denovar? It ain't going to happen Sarge! No Sir! At the first twitch of a frozen hand grasping from the snow, you can count on ol Denovar to pop that sucker full of fetched wood." He picks up the arrow he had shot a squirrel with earlier in the week. "What do you say Vern, up for round two? Looks like your still straight, fletching in order. That squirrels skull wasn't enough to break your tip. Sounds like your next target might be right through ol Uncle Jimmy's missing eyeball! He wasn't so bright anyway. Maybe being undead will be good form him!"

Quick Stats
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Denovar Highwater
Level: 3 Ranger (Hunter)
HP: 28/28, AC: 14 (16 with shield) Speed: 30ft
Stats: Str 12, Dex 16, Con 14, Int 8, Wis 13, Cha 9
Passive Perception: 14 Feats:: Sharpshooter
Spell Slots 1st 3/3
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Old 07-14-2015, 01:14 PM
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Mar's ears twitch. "Den, shut your face!" Something rustled, in the snow just off the track aways. She cocks her head...hops down from the rock she'd been perched atop, coat flapping around her in a quick harsh breeze. Which spooks the quarry, but she whirls around in time to see it dashing down toward thicker brush. "Not a chance you fluffy white fcuk!" Her speech resonates, a little at first, then grows like an echo chamber. A very abusive echo chamber. "...adorable godsfcuking bunnies think you're hot shlt..." The rabbit stops dead in the road; a flock of sparrows flee. "...see how cute you look with a spit up your ass!" She takes a deep breath.

There is a quiet moment. The rabbit bleeds into the snow.

Mar swaggers over and grabs the corpse by its ears. "Salted pork, like hell!" she laughs. "Still got those mushrooms, Dovorson? I'm thinkin stew."
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Old 07-15-2015, 09:32 PM
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Marack Dovorson (Application) (Sheet)
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mal Radagast View Post
"Still got those mushrooms, Dovorson? I'm thinkin stew."
Marack grunted, fishing in his haversack for the 'shrooms picked earlier when the army had rested by a cave. He had been careful to picked only the brown and white ones, avoiding the far more numerous spotted ones. Others had shown less discretion . . . and paid for it with rivers of assruns hours later.

To Marack's credit, he had given a warning. Well, a warning. To one person. Who was collecting the fungi willy-nilly and stuffing his cheeks. But Aglarondian had only laughed, declaring the 'Iceman' couldn't possibly know anything about cave mushrooms in the Dragonjaw Mountains.

Marack stopped trying after that. Fool can't even be bothered know why its called Neverwinter, he growled, annoyed at the nickname a few rather unworldly Aglarondian soldiers had bestowed upon Marack Dovorson.

At least this odd elf woman, oddest he'd ever seen, knew enough to call him by his name. At least part of his name.

"Here," he said, holding a fistful up like he needed to prove his words. "And gut the hare this time. I don't want a mouthful of digested grass guts squirting out again," he added, a bit darkly, remembering the last time the elf had sought a trade of rabbit meat for scavenged seasonings.
 
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Old 07-19-2015, 04:57 PM
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She was going to do the cooking, but now there are just some precedents a lady doesn't like to set. She tosses both rabbit and garnish back at him. "Welp, you're the clever woodsman - you do it. Either way, you can eat shlt." Shooting him a facetious wink, Mar turns and struts away.

Finding Rhessa by the cart, she rolls her eyes. "Men. Psh."
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