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  #16  
Old 04-27-2020, 11:15 AM
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Nolmendil
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Vidar’s thunderous voice drew Nolmendil’s attention from the merchant to the dwarf. He was exactly like the tales he had read back in Imladris described Durin’s folk: loud, boastful, cantankerous, prejudiced. Despite having the eyes of an eagle, thought the elf, you can hardly tell apart one of the Eldar from a man. Knowing that the dwarf was sure to take offense no matter how tactfully he informed Vidar that Braegar was as much an elf as Baldor, the Noldo kept his tongue. The others would inform the dwarf of his mistake soon enough, and when they did he was eager to stay far away from the barrage of curses that would surely follow.

 
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Old 04-27-2020, 12:19 PM
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The Company is formed
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As soon as the bandits have disappeared through the treeline, Belgo rushes toward his father, who throws down the branch he was using to keep his attackers at bay, and embraces his son.

"Thank you! Thank you! You saved me in the nick of time," he says to the remainder of his guard that had come to his aid. "There's a good lad," Baldor says, looking down at his son. "Why don't you go check on the ponies for me."

Belgo nodded and ran over to the four pack animals and began rubbing his hands down their necks, ensuring they were all calm.

"I feel so foolish for allowing those three into my caravan. I cannot imagine what might have happened had you all not been here," he said, his eyes looking over to Belgo as he tended the ponies. "And you, sir," he said, calling over to Braegar,[SAY] thank you, truly, for coming to the aid of my son. I can only feel your being so close at hand when disaster struck as fortuitous. I seem to be short a few guards. If you are looking for work, I would be delighted if you would join my company. I am carrying iron tools and toys from Dale to the folk of Woodland Hall. I have arranged with the Elves for passage through their lands, but my path leads me through Mirkwood, which has its own dangers. I can pay you 50 silver pennies in coin or goods once they reach the Forest Gate. What do you say?

Solveig and Vormund venture off into the trees south of the overgrown road, following the obvious trail of the two would-be bandits.

Baldor offers the elf a smile after Nolmendil offers the shaken trader a drink from his waterskin. "Thank you, though I dare say I would not mind something a little stronger right now. Was there any..? No! Goodness, no. I have never seen those three before in my entire life. I can only assume the big one invented that ruse to try and justify their actions. This isn't the first time I have been robbed before, I'm sad to say, but certainly the first time by my own people."

"Now that unpleasantness is behind us," Baldor said, walking toward the ponies, "I believe it is high time that we get back underway. It will take us a little more than two days to reach the edge of Mirkwood and we have a schedule to keep."


GM NotesIf everyone is ready to begin the 1st leg of the journey, I will need telcontar (as guide) to make an embarkation roll:
(d12 + guide's survival bonus + half guide's wisdom bonus (rounded down) - peril rating).

Journey to the edge of Mirkwood: 50 miles over easy terrain (2.5 days travel)
The peril rating for this journey is 1
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  #18  
Old 04-27-2020, 01:00 PM
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Braegar
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Braegar turned to face Vidar, his expression conveying puzzlement that changed slowly to a wry half-grin. "Forsooth, master dwarf, but having been born an elf was too great a shame to bare!" He removed his hood to display his clearly round ears "Tis why I had these filed down to the size of proper folk's." Braegar adopted a more somber tone, bowing his head "I know it is a paltry penance for having been born an elf, alas... Though I suppose not having been born a dwarf could be considered suffering enough."

Braegar laughed and pulled his hood back over his head. "The son of Baldor is well, and near enough to hear us, I'm sure if..." At that moment, Belgo ran out from his hiding place to his father's waiting arms.

The Merchant thanked his guards and then thanked Braegar and offered to pay him to replace the brigand guards on his journey to Woodland Hall. "I've done nothing worthy of thanks," said Braegar shaking his head, "your own guards handled the trouble. But I am bound to return home in any case and would be happy to join you on your journey, If you have enough rations for Shadowmaw and myself together." He ruffled one of the great hounds ears roughly, and shadowmaw leaned into it, making happy gruffing sounds.


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Last edited by Helvorix; 04-27-2020 at 02:54 PM.
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Old 04-27-2020, 03:06 PM
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Vidar
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Vidar met Braegar with a boisterous laugh. "Well not everyone can be so blessed as to be of Durin's kin, but by the sounds of it ye may be the best elf I ever met." he said with a big grin. The dwarf looked at Shadowmar suspiciously, which is to say normally for any dwarf meeting such a creature. Vidar was not sure if he could trust it or if it would be on him when he had his back turned. "Are ye sure that thing be safe... it doesn't have a taste for dwarf does it?" he asked.

"We all know dwarves are the tastiest of all and I wouldn't put it past the beast." he followed. "If ye keep it away from me beard I would be happy to have a round eared elf along for the journey." he said with a smile. "Apparently we have a recent vacancy."

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Old 04-27-2020, 04:28 PM
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Vormund
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As the tracking pair slowed to a stop, Vormund did his best to assess the destination of the ruffians. They seemed to be heading back toward town... perhaps to bring reinforcements, but more likely to drink away their frustration. The ranger very much doubted they would cause any more trouble for the caravan anytime soon... an opinion Solveig clearly shared based on her outburst.

Vormund frowned slightly as his companion turned back toward the rest of the group. She was clearly vexed... was it because of the man she'd been forced to kill? Vormund reached out a hand to grasp her shoulder, hesitating for a moment before thinking better of it and letting his hand drop back to his side.

"You did nothing you weren't required to my friend... pointless death is regrettable, but you certainly were not the one who chose it today. The fact that you're so bothered all the same is evidence of your character." Vormund cleared his throat, walking alongside the Barding woman as they returned to the path. "I'm sure that does little to erase your frustration, but for what it's worth, Belgo might have lost his father today if not for you." Vormund's tone fell somewhere between comforting and slightly matter-of-fact. He flashed a small smile before dropping the subject and turning his focus back on the caravan.

The young man Braegar was good-naturedly humoring Vidar, the surly-looking dwarven fellow who'd been covering their rear since first setting out. Vidar seemed to have mistaken the new arrival for an elf, a misunderstanding that went unresolved by Braegar's humor, with the dwarf taking him at his word. Shaking his head, Vormund couldn't help cracking another smile as he shot poor Nolmendil an exasperated look. The elf seemed to be making a profoundly concerted effort to avoid saying anything, and Vormund admired his restraint.

"I must say Vidar, in my... limited experience.... our man is quite different from any elf I've ever seen. I daresay I might even claim him as a fellow man... but again, limited experience." Vormund chuckled, turning back to the road ahead.

As Baldor pushed for the group to continue onward, Vormund strode forward, resuming his place scouting ahead.
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Old 04-28-2020, 09:43 PM
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The journey
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Grimfara was overjoyed when shadowmaw allowed him to pet his glorious coat. He said in a hushed voice speaking to the hound, "No! You're not a cheese thief boy, you deserved that cheese. Those silly dwarves don't know any better." After finishing up his friendly meeting he stood up and listened as the merchant spoke. Something seemed off to him, of course the merchant had been robbed before, that would be a surprise if it was the other way, but for guard to make "False" accusations seemed weird to Grimfara.

He was content listening to the groups back and forth, not much for conversation after a battle, he needed to let his blood cool off. He tucked away his great axe and prepared for the journey ahead. He smiled as he fell in line and did his best to help the look outs on the journey.

He stood in the forest, feeling the breeze wisp around him and his fur clothing. He was father away from "home" than he had ever been, yet he felt good. He had set out to find his place in the world, and to show his worth, but maybe that would change. Surrounded by what seemed to be good people allowed him to relax. This journey would be good, he knew it.
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Old 05-02-2020, 09:40 AM
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Braegar
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"The only things that need fear his fangs are wolves and orcs." Braegar assured the dwarf. "I've just spent the better part of two months alone with him in the wild and I have yet to be eaten. You will never find a more doughty companion than one of our wolfhounds, you will see."

Braegar was glad to be among others again. Though all the woodmen of Mirkwood delighted in the company of their hounds, he had greatly missed being able to speak to those who could answer him in return.

He threw Vormund a wink at his interjection as he passed by, before turning back to Vidar. "I'd best make myself useful, wouldn't want it said I did nothing but eat the merchant's food and jest with his guards." He gave Vidar a deep bow " I look forward to sharing the road with you, master dwarf." and with that, he took his leave, following after Vormund.

"If you intend to scout ahead," Said Braegar as he drew up beside the ranger, "allow Shadowmaw and myself to aid you. I know my hound could still use the training and as for my part; I'd like to make myself of use as best I can and I know a bit about these lands and what dwells herein."

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Old 05-04-2020, 03:17 PM
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Journey through the Long MarshesDestination: Mirkwood
Approximate Travel Length: 50 miles (2.5 days travel)
  • Guide: Solveig
  • Scout: Vormund + Braegar (help action gives advantage)
  • Hunter: Solveig
  • Look-out: Nolmendil + Grimfara or Vidar (help action gives advantage)
Traveled Thus Far: 1 Day - 16 Miles


The Company is formed"Oh, I dare say there will be plenty of rations to go around, considering the we would now have two less mouths to feed," Baldor said in rely to Braegar's concern over rations.

After the guard-turned-bandit that had died while attempting to steal from the caravan had been buried not far from the edge of the road, they were ready to set out. Baldor gave the signal and the ponies marched onward.

With Baldor's maps, Solveig's skill, and a clear, though worn, road to follow, the caravan made a quick start and suffered no trouble getting underway. As the day wore on however, the path began to prove more arduous than expected. Overgrown bushes and vines, fallen trees and muddy patches all caused the party to cover miles less ground than had been expected.

About halfway through the day, with everyone spending nearly all of their time clearing debris from the road, Solveig saw signs left by some game that would likely prove a far better meal than their traveling rations. Leaving the caravan to continue onits intended path, she ventured into the surrounding wilds in search of his quarry. A little over an hour later, she returned with a large boar slung over her shoulders.

Camp was set not long after Solveig's return, the smell of roasting boar filling the cool spring evening air not long after that.



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Last edited by Silent Rain; 05-04-2020 at 07:52 PM.
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Old 05-05-2020, 12:17 AM
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Vormund
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As Braegar made his approach, Vormund smiled and gave him a small nod.

"I welcome your company; not to mention a local's expertise." Smiling down at Shadowmaw, Vormund offered his hand non-threateningly to the hound, allowing him to take in the ranger's scent before giving him a few friendly scratches. Vormund liked dogs quite a bit; he found them to be loyal and dedicated companions.

Vormund didn't speak much as they traveled, taking seriously his responsibilities as the three kept watch ahead of the main group. There were occasional exchanges, with Vormund speaking a little about his homeland out West, and his time helping the Bardings rebuild. He listened to Braegar as well, interested in getting to know his new traveling companion.



Vormund sniffed the air, welcoming the pleasant aroma of what would soon be their evening meal. He was quite impressed with Solveig’s find... certainly he would be even more impressed once he’d had a taste.

"While we wait on the meat, it’s probably best we establish watches for the night." Vormund reached into one of his pockets, pulling out a pipe. "Not that we’re in any kind of rush. Lovely night like this is good as any for getting a better feel for one another." Vormund smiled at his companions, pre-packing his pipe with a bit of Old Toby to be enjoyed after dinner, before stowing it again. "I know I’m not the only stranger to these lands amongst us. What brought the rest of you out here?"
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Old 05-05-2020, 04:59 PM
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Nolmendil
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The Noldo silently followed the caravan, his heart heavy. He had buried the man called Finnar next to a plane tree as well as he could, hoping that the great tree’s shadow would somehow offer comfort to Finnar’s soul. He had even recited an elven poem about the shores of Valinor but nothing he had done could change the fact that neither by word nor the arts of the healer had he been able to save the man’s life. Life, he mused, so precious and yet so fragile. Or perhaps it is because of this fragility that it is valued above all else.

Solveig led the group well but the sad state of the road delayed the caravan more than his merchant friend had expected, the annoyance obvious in his eyes and the tone of his voice. Hopefully, now that a king sat on Dale’s throne, Esgaroth had been rebuilt and trade was beginning to flourish, effort would be made to keep the road heading to Mirkwood serviceable. It was one of the tests that those who had power and authority over others would have to pass.

When the group decided to set camp, eager as all were to taste the roasting boar Solveig had generously provided, Nolmendil spoke briefly to Baldor and then left the road to look for medicinal herbs and roots. As he passed Braegar and his hound, the elf offered the man a smile and the animal a respectful nod of his head. "Your name is Shadowmaw but your are truly a creature of lightEsselya Ungoanto nán naliyë násië Onnacálë", said the Noldo softly. He had heard that the people of King Thranduil had the power to communicate with animals, plants and even inanimate beings. He didn’t possess this incredible power, but in his experience many creatures instinctively understood the general meaning of a sentence spoken in the blessed tongue. In any case, it would show the hound that it had the elf’s respect.

The land proved very generous, as it usually was when not tainted by the Shadow, and Nolmendil soon found what he was looking for, easily replenishing his supplies. Luck was with him it seemed, for he also discovered patches of oregano, rosemary and thyme and used the aromatic herbs to flavor the meat. The Noldo rarely ate meat, preferring vegetables and fruits, but not to participate would mean to offend Solveig and that was the last thing he desired to do. Taking a place near the fire, the elf closed his eyes for a few moments and enjoyed the last rays of the sun carressing his arms, the warmth of burning wood and the freshness of the breeze on his face. "I will gladly take the first watch, Vormund", answered Nolmendil the Dúnedain’s question, "The sky is mostly clear of clouds and I long to listen to the stars sing among themselves." Placing a small branch over the flames and watching it catch fire, Nolmendil smiled at the Northman. "I was sent by Lord Elrond to see with my own eyes the birth of hope in the lands surrounding the Lonely Mountain. The North and its people have won my heart", at this point Nolmendil looked briefly at Baldor, "and I have decided to stay for the time being. I have still much to learn about men and dwarves but it is my desire that I do so." Throwing the branch at the bonfire, the elf looked at the rest of Baldor’s companions, wondering who would speak next.

 
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Old 05-06-2020, 03:20 PM
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Braegar
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Most of their time scouting the way ahead was spent in companionable silence. Though during their brief exchanges, Braegar listened to Vormund as he spoke of his homeland and his recent dealings with the men of Dale; and in exchange Braegar told him of his own home, Woodland Hall, or Wuduseld as it was called by the woodmen. A faint note of pride touched his voice as he spoke of the murals carved into the walls of the great hall atop the hill.

The ranger's talk of the lands in the west piqued Braegar's interest most of all, as he had kinsmen that passed over the mountains into that region, and the thought of adventure in an unknown part of the world captured his imagination.




Shadowmaw held his head high in pride as the elf spoke to him in a tongue that Braegar did not recognize and yet felt familiar. Though he could not understand elvish himself, he felt sure it was different from the language spoken by the silvan elves of Mirkwood. The elf himself seemed different in other ways too, but he couldn't quite put them into words. "Well met, my friendMae g'ovannen mellon nin... That's all the elvish I know." He shrugged, offering an apologetic smile, "Though your speech is unlike to that of any elf I've met."

A piece of wood that was still mostly uncharred, broke off a log the fire had weakened and rolled near Braegar's feet. He picked it up and, taking a seat with the rest of the company, he began working on it with his wood knife. Shadowmaw turned in place three times and flopped down with a huff beside him. "For my part," Braegar started, "I have spent near on two months training Shadowmaw to hunt and survive in the wood. I hadn't planned on staying away so long or traveling so far east of home but you know what they say about plans. I was on my way to Lake-Town to reprovision when Belgo found me."

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Old 05-08-2020, 12:34 PM
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Vidar
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Vidar had been sitting quietly staring at the flames dancing before his eyes as the others considered what order to put the watch on and introduced themselves and their place in the caravan. The others seemed to have great vast stories of how their lives had lead them to this moment, great callings that would shape their paths forward in the future. As far as Vidar was concerned that was all a bunch of childish drivel spooned to children in dark moments to give them hope. The shadow was out there, he knew it, he could feel it in his bones. One day it would come for him and he would have to face it like a warrior... like a dwarf.

"I knew it!" Vidar called out as Braegar spoke the few words he knew in the fae tongue. "See not-elf you even talk like they do! " he called out. "I see through your tricks!" he said with a laugh poking a fire with a stick as he did so.

"Well I guess its my turn." he said. "I am Vidar son of Frór here to enact my dark vengeance...." he said before laughing again. "Oi I'm just haven' a poke, unlike you lot I'm here for the money. Some honest work, maybe get to swing me axe at somethin' all in all its honest work."he replied.


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Old 05-09-2020, 04:31 AM
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Solveig
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The wild boar was a good catch, and Solveig was pleased with herself. In her mind, it almost made up for having to kill Finnar and their slow progress through the Long Marshes. She hung the boar from a tree and bled it out, then skinned, gutted and cleaned the carcass, before setting it to roast in the campfire.

Whilst the wild boar cooked, Solveig checked on the ponies,
Dice Animal Handling check:
d20+5 (2)+5 Total = 7
making sure they had no injuries or soreness and giving them a good rub down. It gave her an opportunity to listen to the camp talk. The others seemed to have accepted the presence of the Woodman Braegar and his wolfhound. Indeed, the party seemed to be bonding over the hound. In Solveig's experience, this was nothing new. People often found it easier to share affection with an animal than with each other. And the hound, with its keen sense of smell, would undoubtedly be useful in the days ahead. She was less certain of its master. An additional pair of hands (and eyes) around the camp might prove useful. But after the treachery of Jonar, Kelmund and Finnar, she was inclined to keep a careful eye on this newcomer.

It had been a valuable lesson. The Wilderland was a dangerous place, and not everyone was what they seemed to be. She was inclined to trust Grimfara and Vidar. She knew and trusted both the Beornings and the Dwarves of the Lonely Mountain. But the others were an unknown factor. She knew nothing of the Dunedain or of the Elves from west of the Misty Mountains. Nor did she know this Lord Elrond of whom Nolmendil spoke.

She realised that the others were saying a little about themselves and about their reasons for being on this journey, and that they might be expecting the same of her. "I find no comfort in the towns and cities of Men. The Road is my home now." She retrieved some blankets and settled herself against a nearby tree. "It's not a bad life. Even in Mirkwood there is still beauty."

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Last edited by Telcontar; 05-09-2020 at 11:33 PM. Reason: Slight amendment to final para.
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Old 05-09-2020, 10:22 PM
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The journey
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Grimfara was joyed that the group had finally begun to move again. His blood had cooled and he was more level minded than before. Taking in the sights of the world as they walked the Beorning couldn't help but notice a feeling he hadn't felt since making it to the land of Beorn, a sense of wonderment. There was much of the world that was foreign to him and he knew many challenges await, but he knew where he belonged, in nature. Doing his best to keep a lookout he occasionally would real in his head to the moment and scout for anything odd. Although he was not very good and caused a false alarm or two until he learned to just keep quiet unless he was sure.

Seeing Solveig came back with a massive boar had lifted Grimfara's spirits even more. The trail rations were ok, but it had been a few days since he had a proper meal. He moves over to offer to help carry the beast. Setting up camp, the Beorning takes out his bedroll and opens it up underneath the cover of a nearby tree. Never one to enjoy the creations of the mean of cities, he enjoyed nature and all it provided.

As the fire was roaring Grimafar sat down with hit axes and a whetstone and began the delicate work of sharpening his blades. As he worked he listened to the tails of the others. Vormund was the first to speak and asked about watches. His curiously peaked and he quickly chimed in, "I would be glad to stand to watch with you, my friend. I best not be left along anyway, for your eyes are far superior," he laughed at his statement. His interest peaked as the dwarf spoke of vengeance, an idea rather foreign to him, only to be dismayed to find he was fooled by Vidar's wit. A smile crept on his face as he turned back to his axes.

It got a little quiet before Grimfara looked up and realized eyes were on him, "Oh! Sorry," he goes to put his weapons down but drops them as they make a small clatter hitting the ground before the stone plops onto them as well. Slighlty embarrassed he puts his hands on his knees and leans forward, "I am Grimfara!" He says slighlty to loud before realizing his mistake and quiets himself, "I come from the kingdom of Beorn himself. I can't say I am here for the money so much as the experience," focusing on the fire he watches as the flames wisp around the wood being consumed. Listening to the crackling as wood the kindle burns and fills the air with smoke and ash. "I..I wan't to find home. I don't know what that is but I hope to find it someday," Looking up he worries he might have soured the mood a bit and try to recover, "But worry not! As long as I am by your side you have no reason to fear, the might of Beorn cannot be matched!" He stands up at the last bit, beating his chest, a little too quickly and falls backward onto the group with a grunt.
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Old 05-10-2020, 02:07 AM
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The Company is formed
Journey through the Long MarshesDestination: Mirkwood
Approximate Travel Length: 50 miles (2.5 days of travel)
  • Guide: Solveig
  • Scout: Vormund + Braegar (help action gives advantage)
  • Hunter: Solveig
  • Look-out: Nolmendil + Grimfara or Vidar (help action gives advantage)
Traveled Thus Far: 1 Day - 16 Miles

Nolmendil set out not long after the company made camp, hoping to find some herbs that might prove useful. He was quick to find herbs that would prove beneficial in the roasting boar, no doubt, but nothing else caught his eye. He was about to turn back, when he spotted a patch of hagweed floating on a small pool of water. As he was taking a cutting of the weed, he also spotted a tall cluster of reedmace, the long reeds showing their tell-tale mace-like tops usually seen in the spring. With his herbs collected, Nolmendil returned to camp You harvested 1 bunch of hagweed and reedmacesuccessful in his search.

While Solveig prepared the boar, she spent time inspecting the four ponies that had since been relieved of their heavy loads for the night. Although not remarkable, they all seemed sturdy beasts that showed no signs of distress for making the trip this far. As far as she could tell, they were all happy and in good health.

The company made introductions all around and the tension Baldor had been carrying from the attack and then from the poor condition of the road slowly began to etch away. A smile even crossed his lips as he watched Belgo throwing a stick with Braegar's hound.




Journey through the Long MarshesDestination: Mirkwood
Approximate Travel Length: 50 miles (2.5 days of travel)
  • Guide: Solveig
  • Scout: Vormund + Braegar (help action gives advantage)
  • Hunter: Solveig
  • Look-out: Nolmendil + Grimfara or Vidar (help action gives advantage)
Traveled Thus Far: 2 Days - 32 Miles

The following day saw much of the same, with the caravan's guards spending much of their time removing debris from the road, continually slowing the pace that Baldor had expected the pace. He had even stopped complaining about it, resigning himself to accept that they would not arrive on time.

As the sun was near to setting, the company found a good place to camp and rest, but Solveig found a gigantic paw-print in the mud. It was definitely that of a wolf, but it is incredibly large and heavy – the beast must be at least the size of a bear! The prospect of encountering such a beast certainly made resting there less appealing.

After examining the print further, she determined that the print was old, and that the wolf was no longer nearby. The company rested in comfort, knowing there was at least one less thing to worry about.



Journey through the Long MarshesDestination: Mirkwood
Approximate Travel Length: 50 miles (2.5 days of travel)
  • Guide: Solveig
  • Scout: Vormund + Braegar (help action gives advantage)
  • Hunter: Solveig
  • Look-out: Nolmendil + Grimfara or Vidar (help action gives advantage)
Traveled Thus Far: 3 Days - 48 Miles

Midway through the third day Baldor's mood once again turned sour, knowing that they should already have arrived at their destination. Instead, they found themselves making camp for a third night.

Despite this, the company arrived at their destination the morning of the fourth day with tales of their journey on their lips, their spirits high and their thoughts filled with fine memories of new companions. This joyous mood is Accordingly, the company receives advantage on all rolls pertaining to social interaction. The bonus will remain until they fail at one
of these rolls.
contagious to all but the most dour of folk they may encounter.

Having finally reached their destination beside the shore of the Forest River, the company now had simply to wait for the transportation that Baldor had arranged, despite the fact that they had arrived a day after they were expected to.



Part two - The Edge of the Woodland Realm



Guests of the Elves

At twilight, a trio of rafts emerge from the mists on the river. Green-cloaked figures punt these rafts to the shore. The Elves greet Baldor and the company warmly – the merchant is well known to them. The Elves are amused and fascinated by Belgo; they say there are few children among them in these days.

The ponies are unloaded and their burdens transferred to the rafts. The animals are initially wary about getting onto the rafts, but one of the Elves whispers in the ponies’ ears, and instantly all four of the animals become perfectly calm, happily trot onto the rafts and stand stock-still in the middle.

Once departed, the Elves expertly pilot their rafts against the current of the Forest River. After several days of slow travel, the land on either side of the rafts rises and turns stony and wooded, and the company pass into the shadow of the trees. It is as though the rafts are sailing up a dark tunnel, as the branches interlace overhead into a dark canopy. The company glimpse tall hills in gaps between the trees, until the river widens and the trees grow thinner once again. Here, a bay opens, and huts cling close to a shingly shore. The Elves steer up a stream which flows out of a rocky canyon. The canyon walls grow higher and higher, until the rafts pass a portcullis and suddenly they find themselves in the caves of the Elvenking.

The rafts are rowed to a dock within the cave where the ponies and goods are removed. As the elves that rowed the rafts depart, another elf appears and approaches Baldor.

"Baldor, it is good to see you," the elf says. " You are lucky we were watching your approach for the last two days, else we might have missed you. I trust your journey here was a safe one?"

"Lindar, it is good to see you as always. I'm afraid I ran into a little trouble before reaching the forest, though my guards were able to see us safety through," he said, gesturing toward the others.

"I cannot say that I am surprised," the elf continued. The human lands are...unpredictable, he said, clearly attempting to be diplomatic considering the company Baldor was in.

" Creosa. Lle naa creosa sinome, Lindar," Lindar said to Nolmendil. Reverting back to the common tongue, the elf looked to the rest of the party. "Baldor is welcome here, but I do not like the idea of such a large party of armed men...and a dwarf," he added, attempting to hide his frown, "within our halls. I think it might be best if you all remained in the cellar nearby where my guards will accompany you until the caravan is ready to depart in two days time."




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