War Stories

  • Narfell DM

    Linah mentioned in IRC she was looking forward to stories from the Civil War, which is a great idea. Small victories, defeats, tragedies and feats of bravery litter all wars in Faerun, so please go ahead and post your own tales from the chaos, grand or small, here. 😉

    ((If this would be better in Tales By the Fire, please do move it, I put it here because its Peltarch and stuff 🙂 ))

  • The huge Peltarch Siege Ballista firing at enemy positions during the eastlander war:-

    "General Lavindo stood upon the platform, gazing back calmly at the already battered eastlander positions. He uttered four words… "Death to Peltarch's enemies". In a moment of firing the long hours of preparation and surprise was ready to be unleashed upon Peltarch's enemies, and in that moment the eastlander positions became as ash, weapons, bodies and the ground itself became as one. And death followed after..."

    Extract from the Memoirs of Barrim Asbravn.

  • Narfell DM

    The Assassins and the Assault…

    The green haired elf followed the Lieutenant up the stairs into his Office. She was quite interested to hear what he wanted to say, he was a rarely seen figure these days with the kobold and Eastlander activity ever increasing. The last time she recalled conversing with him for any length of time was almost a decade ago to the south as himself and Meril were preparing for a trip to the Lost City. Still, she liked him a good deal, his reports were always humourously blunt and provided her paperwork days with some refreshing moments.

    It was also the first time she had entered the Far Scout's Headquarters, so she peered around with great curiousity at the room she was in, it looked terribly organised she thought. Neat rows of chairs, a podium for Azrael to speak to his men from, desks carefully spaced to not impede anything around them. It was like they had hired a paladin to decorate the place. Still, she mused that it was probably all for the best in the long run if it helped them do their jobs. Azrael turned around after locking the door and walked accross to his desk briskly before turning again to face the smiling bard.

    From beneath his desk a shadow rose into a standing position, and Eowiel's keen senses picked up several others moving out from behind bookcases and from under other desks, five in all her senses told her, and before she could speak a warning the tall human figure had plunged a dagger into Azrael's back. Eowiel shouted a warning, "Azrael! Run!", as the other four practically flew accross the room to Azrael and her. But she was already humming frantically, slashing an eldritch symbol into the air before her, and she vanished from sight with a musical tingle. She ran for the door before spinning around to see if Azrael was behind her, but he was not. He had turned to deliver a fierce gash accross the midriff of his first assailant, but even as she stumbled back in shock the other four were upon him. He aimed a stabbing thrust at one's throat but she twisted aside, her dagger and three others sinking into the already wounded elven man. They had aimed with lethal percision, one terrible looking gash accross his legs, Eowiel could not believe he was still able to stand on it.

    Her hand went to her sword, but before she could attack the harried elf had already reacted with critical speed to his predicament; a brownish vial on his belt was in his hand and in slow motion he was raising it to his lips as the attackers blades dove down upon him once again. To thier chargin, the bloodied elf vanished before them. In a second, Eowiel felt him slam into the door, no doubt throwing himself at it for fear he would collapse in trying to walk. There was a metalic snap, the door opened wide. She spared one look for the five assassins before darting out. They looked frantic. Then came the thundering voice of Azrael, the sound of the blood filling his lungs making his command sound all the more pertinent; "GUARDS! ASSASSINS IN MY OFFICE! GUARDS!". There was a second of silence. Then in a rush, Far Scouts that Eowiel had not even seen on her way in dashed past her, reaching for their blades.

    Eowiel called after Azrael and followed him out into the commons where he grabbed ahold of the railing. Eowiel was amazed he had managed that far. Healing was called for him immediately and Magistrate Barrim stormed over to the scene. Immediately it was apparant one of the assassins had escaped, leaving a bloodied trail towards the gates. Eowiel followed, drawing her Nightmare's Edge, the blade reflecting storm clouds that wern't there. The group of adventurers drawn by the incident crowded around the dead assassin, who had barely made it to the Nars Pass before being slain by Pete, who had noted her flight before anyone else. On returning towards the city, Barrim ordered the city onto high alert, and most rightly so, for moments later the first shot flew…

    The Bard Ocean Fyne collapsed to the ground, the group turned at the sound in surprise to see the bard on her stomach with an arrow sticking from her back. It was quickly seen to, the wound was scorched which Eowiel knew meant one thing. Flameshots. Elite Eastlander forces were approaching. Indeed, as the group hurried around to the south gate a wave of magical energy crashed into them, trying to invade their minds and override their control over themselves. Eowiel watched the others grip their heads briefly before she followed suit, a dreamy music entering into her mind. She willed herself not to listen however and it ceased at once. Looking up she saw her companions had not fared so well against the effects...raising her hands and slicing her gloved fingers through the air, she chanted a wave of abjuration into the group, removing the dark magicks from all but one, who was quickly overpowered until his senses returned.

    The release was just in time, for a group of highly elite Eastlander Officers, archers and Eowiel thought she saw some of their deadly Evokers in the group too had rushed forward to try and finish the band before they got within the safety of the walls. Under a hail of arrows and magic, the group fled around to the gates, Eowiel using the last of her remaining magic brought up a huge wall of darkness to cover their flight.

    It was not but seconds after they entered before the fires at the southern watchtower flared up brightly on the southern horizon, visible to many in the Commerce and Civic Districts. The band regrouped and joined the Defender reaction force in reinforcing the Watchtower. The Battle was a swift one, as battles go, but for those fighting its end was a relief beyond words. The Defenders showed as always a tactical ability far greater than that of the Eastlanders and won the day, while Eowiel herself left the battle with the body of a fallen fellow bard, and quite wounded herself, having used up all her magic she was more use tending to her fallen comrade she decided.

  • bump

    only because it would be a shame if no one read the stories just cause the thread went to the 2nd page!!

  • http://www.narfell.com/modules.php?name=Forums&file=viewtopic&p=216531#216531

    Not sure if XP is still being given out, but the latest post is yet another war story.

  • The Beginning
    It's not like they say they are … those senate meetings are actually not boring at all. In fact I was quite entertained up to the point where the black dragon knight the senators and Talgrath's men started bashing the crap out of each other ... then I really began to get a little worried about Clandra who was sitting in the corner with a baby... luckily for her she was promptly turned invisible and made off with her baby and things became entertaining again.

    The senate room was destroyed and littered with bodies ... and just about everyone important was trying to rush the senators out of the city because a civil war was going on... This is all well and good, but when you step outside of the city hall, slightly behind the crowd who's rushing towards the gates, and look to your right to see the small contingent of faithful guards having their hindquarters handed to them on a platter things start to get troublesome. The otherthing that gets troublesome is when you shoot one of the mercenaries who steadfastly refuses to die to the blows of the officer hacking at him as well as the arrows sticking out of his skull. He promptly downs a potion and decides that arrow really pissed him off.

    Luckily for me there was some woman who blased him a few times to distract him, then dissapeared again so he's chase me ... this went on for a little while, then I decided it wasn't worth my time and shook him by running through some city streets and brushing him off on some stray defenders... almost feel sorry for the chaps.

    Well I thought it a good time to take to the shadows and sneak past these mercenaries and hostile soldiers galavanting around in the streets with their shiny armor... And it came out rather well... I made it all the way to the main gate unseen when I saw outside ... was ninety percent of peltarch's only chance at resisting the takeover ... Every one of peltarch's strongest soldiers had regrouped ... outside the gate to see who else had survived.

    Anyways, the story goes downhill. I think to myself "Well I'll just hide in my room in the college while the loyal defenders get a good stalemate running and I'll just blow some stuff up" ... but no ... of course not ... they never let me blow stuff up.

    I hid a few hours behind the trick pannel in my bed and decided to begin my sitting out ... but something was going wrong ... the sounds of battle faded away and all that was left was occasional screams as hiding citizens were found and killed as spies. Thing started to get quiet... or seemed to before a few mercenaries decided to loot the college.

    It's times like these that I remember why I rig my bookcase ... they thought it was ghosts when the fifty pound encyclopedia set started hurling itself across the room and bombarding them. They dragged their unconcious friend out to rejoin their group and find more safe rooms in the college. This was a time to get out. I stripped down into my cat-suit and darted down the hallways to the main entrance, encountering Meril who apparantly had been hiding in a similar mindset to mine.

    Nice chap that he was, he gave me a little help sneaking by turning me invisible before he did so to himself and fled the city... I wasn't fleeing ...there was a resistance group alive somewhere in the city that I could join and blow up some of these people that had done horrible things to my client base.

    ... so I looked in the sefarer guildhouse ...
    and there was not a soul alive, nor a room unpillaged ...

    ... so I searched the fighters academy ...
    and it was pillaged to pieces just like the sefarer guildhouse...

    ...It's ok ... I'll just go to the Temple ... some of the Senators said they were going to find Daisy durring the beginning of the attack ... ok, that's not so bad there'll be some resistance there ..

    ... not worth really saying but, no ... ther was a single priest who had been left behind, but when I checked through the next door for any others the mercenaries stormed through and what happened to him I could only guess ...

    The next twelve hours of my story really aren't worth telling. I had come to several importaant realizations:
    -The senate that had so strongly defended the city from ouside attack had so quickly lost it's strength and crumbled before the corrupt leaders that wished to take over. They had fled, the loyal defenders had fled, and the civilians had fled.
    -The only forms of resistance groups had lost their nerve and fled with the gards, believing themselves to have no chance without some form of outside help
    -I was alone ... except for the people that tried to hide, I was the only one in the city who had any intent of not letting this takeover just happen... Even the urchins in the sewers had fled or taken to deep hiding. This realization was humbling.

    But it was ok, twelve hours later after combing the entire city I left, I took the unknown backroute, sewers escape and emerged soot covered and grimy on the outside of the walls.

    I hadn't even realized it untill I was in complete safety how I had crawled through bodies, hidden in broken chimneys, rolled through burnt-down buildings to get through the city looking for something useful someone had left behind and found nothing. As far as I can tell I was the Last to arrive in the camp after the initial takeover. They were all licking their wounds and talking of taking back the city, but after such a quick defeat I didn't believe a word of it.

    It was partially true, the led a considerably strong force against the city after the siege weapons of the walls had been dissabled but I cannot speak of this battle because I was invisible and ducking between legs and flying bodies that Grag was heaving around with his giant axe as the others in the charge ran in to help and heal. I got through the gate before the others, and quietly ... even though I was invisible, snuck all the way through the city to the city hall ... I quietly climbed the stairs and pulled the powderkeg I had been saving from my magic bag... I prepped the fuse and waited ... when the leaders of this coup left the most logical place for their temporary headquarters I'd be ready for them, I'd have that entangling trap ready for them and let them watch the fuse on the keg burn down to their doom ... but i waited ... dawn had passed and the battle in the commerce district raged on...

    ... noon passed and the battle outside raged on ... there was no sign of my targets ...

    ...dusk ...

    ... night again ... the battle sounds were fading and the first offensive was withdrawing... I was stranded ... oh well, I had a task at hand. It was time to make my mark ... and i'd probably get rich from it

    ...but they never came ... they weren't there

    It was dawn again, I knew something was wrong. The leaders were somewhere else. I returned my things to their bags and decended by rope from an upstairs window. I snuck past countless mercenaries celebrating their victory over the group from the refugee camp and how they were going to block up the gate and defeat them again when the time came. I didn't have time to listen to their idle chatter so I carefully avoided patrols and made my way to my sewer exit.

    Once again, the last one to leave the battleground, soot covered and grimy.

    ((ok, time for me to sleep. I haven't even gotten to the main attack :P... oh and an afterthought:))

    Thoughts of "The Masked"
    Killing each other.

  • _Tugging on their beards and watching the training from the top of the hill, the two dwarves looked grim.

    As the Peltarch officer barked orders, the untrained, displaced commoners and volunteers had trouble forming simple lines.

    When some of the volunteers asked if they were going to be issued weapons and armor, the two dwarves gave each other a dire look as one tugged on his beard incredulously.

    They watch as the volunteers gather and attempt to form a straight line, all the while conversing in hushed tones.

    Finally the Peltarch officer spots them and invites them down, an invitation that they repectfully decline.

    The Dwarves have seen this before. Many say they are more then willing to go. Fewer show up for the battle, and even less survive it.

    At that thought, one dwarf tugs on his beard and tries to remember all the kin that did not return from battle. It is a difficult task, as the memories have been deliberately purged from his mind. Allowing them to stay, would be allowing them to haunt him. That is what bards are for, to keep a memory without any of the guilt or pain associated with it.

    Silently admonishing himself for dwelling on the dead, the dwarf walks off to find a quiet place. Here he lays out his armor, his axe, his posessions. He blesses them all with ale, muttering in gutteral tones to his god.

    He downs ale after ale, a primal rage growing inside him. As he buckles his plate, he talks to himself, recounting what he has done in the past, and promising to repeat his deeds in the near future.

    By the time he is finished armoring himself, he is ready. Drunk, growling and thirsty for combat he marches off to yet another battle._

  • Magsitrate Barrim is heard to hum to himself and occasionally speak quietly the lines of his well known Redcloak Battle Verse. Somewhat disappointed that a decent bardic bass baritone wasn't present when he needed them before the fighters departed, he makes do with his own decent if untrained recitation.

    _Into Battle

    The naked earth is warm with spring,
    And with green grass and bursting trees
    Leans to the sun's gaze glorying,
    And quivers in the sunny breeze;
    And life is colour and warmth and light,
    And a striving evermore for these;
    And he is dead who will not fight;
    And who dies fighting has increase.

    The fighting man shall from the sun
    Take warmth, and life from the glowing earth;
    Speed with the light-foot winds to run,
    And with the trees to newer birth;
    And find, when fighting shall be done,
    Great rest, and fullness after death.

    The woodland trees that stand together,
    They stand to him each one a friend;
    They gently speak in the windy weather;
    They guide to valley and ridge's end.

    The nars hawk hovering by day,
    And the little owls that call by night,
    Bid him be swift and keen as they,
    As keen of ear, as swift of sight.

    In dreary, doubtful, waiting hours,
    Before the brazen frenzy starts,
    The horses show him nobler powers;
    O patient eyes, courageous hearts!

    And when the burning moment breaks,
    And all things else are out of mind,
    And only joy of battle takes
    Him by the throat, and makes him blind,

    Through joy and blindness he shall know,
    Not caring much to know, that still
    Nor bolt nor steel shall reach him, so
    That it be not the Destined Will.

    The thundering line of battle stands,
    And in the air death moans and sings;
    But Day shall clasp him with strong hands,
    And Night shall fold him in soft wings._

  • -Before The Push-

    _He pulled his cloak a little tighter, the hood a slight bit lower, watching the tops of the walls though the rain. He had not moved for a few hours now, and most had forgotten him, standing on the hill, his slight form barely making a shadow's mark behind him, holding an arrow lightly knocked to the string waiting…. there. A lone dark form rose on the wall silouhetted by the fires still burning in the city, he dropped his gaze to the ground, then in one smooth motion brought bow and arrow up and high, letting the string loose just as his eyes set once again to the figure, rewarded a few moments later by the shape disappearing over the back of the wall. He selects another arrow, lightly knocking it to the string and goes back to his quite vigil, watching the flames still lick away at the inside.

    He needed to return to the Romani soon, he had been away to long, neglecting his duties there. His aid here had been only small and of little consequence. An arrow here, some minor healings for those to stubborn to go to the field hospital and ask the priestess Daisy. He had lent some coin here and there to a few of the refugees, and donated towards supplies to aid those he could not help immediately. He had given his own food away early on foolishly, and had had to beg more, though it was all as tasteless as the ash still floating down from the city. He had stopped resting days ago. There was no peace in his reverie, his view of the burning walls replaced only by the burning of the trees of his own home far far south of here. Alvar and Fadien likely remembered little of it, though he and Amendale remembered it well. There was no peace in finding himself repeatedly telling the others, "e: it was not on purpose, it was an accident.... who knew that he could do that..." Those that knew the whys of him and Amendale, Fadien, and Alvar being forced out were dwindling he knew, especially since Amendale had retired into the woods to not be seen for over three years now. This was not helping... he gathered his gear and set south for a walk._

    -The Final Push-

    _He returned in time to hear the shouts go out to form up, and though he only barely remembered where he was supposed to go, he formed up with the others, sword and shield out, kneeling back into the mud, once again pondering the fact that he should not be here. Yet he was, and likely deep down inside, knew it was to aid those who had died long ago, and could do nothing for now. As before they waited, you always wait in a battle, and the refugee army formed into their pretty formations, and those to would be gone soon, rent by spells, death, and confusion. Nico walked from soldier to soldier dropping comments to ease the strain of waiting, though to him they were not needed. "e: Patience, Sy'wyn, it will start soon enough, and not end qick enough…" Starting from behind, on the hill the order came, a barely heard shout at first, rolling forward over the ranks as an ocean wave pushing the army forward as every voice took up the call, every voice but his own roaring out..... "CHARGE!"

    And as a wave the army rolled again across the grass, building momentum, building strength, and he found a note hastily shoved into his hand, as he jogged at a trot, and opened the paper, hoping a note of luck from his loved or family, and instead reading the words, "you are in charge of this group" it read, "secure the Commerce District, and move against the the Bardic College.." The paper fell wadded to the ground to be ground below the feet of the others, as he focused again on the wall, aiming a little farther east of the gate.

    The army split, some bearing east, others west, and he found himself at the head of a grop bearing straight north. The first shouts went out as they came in rang of the archers on the wall, and the group tried their best to form up behind the shields in the front, and he raised his voice loud over the sounds of those screaming.. "FORGET THE FORMS, FLAT AGAINST THE WALL!! KEEP MOVING, TOWARDS THE GATE!! SLOW AND STEADY, NO NEED BEING OVERWHELMED!!" And to his surprise they listened, everyone flattened against the wall, jogging along it, until they reached a break and he stepped out drawing the archers fire on him, and giving his own archers the chance to feather the archers above, who had to lean far out beyond their stone protection to hit him.

    The first company charged out from the gates to try and reach them, and were shoved back by the frontliners, bravely led by the half orc Arishaka and Mog, who almost seemed to walk through the mercenaries and into the gates, leaving a wake of death behind them, and the entire force pushed into the first open space beyond the walls, largely unopposed, striking in as far as the earlier charge had reached in no time. The rush halted as they pushed into the commons, and found many of the mercenaries barricaded behind a wall of rubble, some of it still smoking, and supported by a mage who immediately dropped a fireball into thei midst. " AGAINST THE WALLS!! ARCHERS FORM UP!! " Arrows and axes flew from the refugees dropping the mage before he could do more damage, and Arishaka charged the barricade Mog beside her, and Pete working his way around, as he flipped his cloak back, and set arrow to string working methodically to aid as he could, the others the same. He immediately set people to guard, forming up as he could the few troops remaining to him, setting some to bottleneck the entrance to the commons closest to the burned husk of the Mermaid. Seeing people scatter about to try and hold what they had gained, he raised his voice once more, " SOMEONE RUN BACK AND TELL THE DWARVES TO AIM FARTHER NORTH!! " Random kegs and the occasional hin still hit the ground around them, as the area was secured, and more of the refugee Defenders came to hold, the officer barking to him as he came, " Good work! We'll secure the commons, keep the momentum going!" He healed as he could and went down on a knee intending to pray when he happened to spot something coming around the corner. Turning aside, not truly knowing all of the factions going on he had time to ask one question, " Black Armor is bad, right? " Before the armor in question came, with well trained muscle guiding it into their midst, and Pete was down in two hits, and suddenly mage spells were igniting the air, lighting Chaevre as she turned troll, and began hitting into the knights from behind, and he had enough time to stop Pete's bleeding and try to half drag him back before Pete was finished off with numerous hits from a blade that moved impossibly fast, and then.... silence... they had held, and the officer was bidding them move on, and somewhere Ting had shown, and he sent her out to scout, and waited for an answer._

    -A Wrong Turn-

    _Soldiers to the south, officers to the north and a mage to the east. He moved his troops from the commons, slowly, easily, knowing that it was well known by now they had taken the commons and expecting opposition, and it came, but they had to move on, they could not stand still, and he moved in the middle of the troops wrapped in his cloak, his armor dented beneath, hearing the sounds of continuing fights across the city, but not hearing what he wanted which was the cheers of the other refugee groups, they started around around the Mermaid, it's burning shell masking their movements, as they flowed out into the street, moving east. And suddenly they were beset by a mage and a few troops, dropping Ting dead almost before she hit the ground, and Arishaka not long after, and he stopped as he realized he was heading the wrong direction from the College, that it was to the west, and so he reformed his few remaining troops, the adventurers within it becoming more scattered and showing the strain of the fight they had already gone through. Securing doors as they went, eyeing nervously the charred windows open above them, they moved towards the college.

    There it was.. he stepped forwards as quiet as only an elf in full plate can, as two defenders wearing the colors of those who fought for the refugees came up, and then from further down the street stepped two soldiers, wearing fine armor, one bearing the markings of a high officer, and one of the Defenders with them managed to get out, "It's Captain Rashor!" before the two slammed into the front lines, Mog and Chaevre taking the brunt of their combined fury, as he tried to stay out of reach and work his bow, stepping up only to heal. Chaevre was taking to many hits for her troll form to heal off, and he was running so very low on spells, so he drew blade and threw himself into their midst between them giving time for Chaevre to step back and heal. Mog, the two Defender soldiers, shouting for the captain to give in and the dark armored elf danced in circles around the two officers, none finding a real opening, and the two were back to back, with what seemed an armies worth of potions on them. Chaevre jumped back into the fight and he rolled out resuming his bow work, and trying to keep Mog on his feet. Finally down to his last spell, he took a risk, and shouted, " MOG BACK!! Leaving Chaevre to take the brunt of the swords, as he healed Mog with his last heal spell left, whispered a quick word, his cloak flaring blue and settling a mist aound him, and then a soft chant as he too turned troll, all elegant fighting gone, and threw himself back into the fray. The three of them focusing on the lesser officer were able to drop him, and then focused onto the Captain.

    Finally there was no choice, he ordered Mog back, and him and Chaevre settled into the tactics of those who are used to taking others forms… one took hits while the other healed, and so on and so one, till finally, with no other choice, and the arrows from the archers still not finding openings, he lost control and started beating down on the Officers helm, in an effort to blind him, crush his skull, squish him, who knows, not even the troll he was knew because those thoughts are above a troll, and in a final fit of rage he struck both fists down on the officers head and he dropped.... finally dropped. The troll he was, blinked. Then moved down the street, slowly its wounds covering over, and they had it... they had cleared the commerce district, and still he heard no shouts from the others.... And as he moved back to the commons, a dark slip of a girl stepped from the shadows of a building and whispered, " Sy'wyn " and it took him a moment to register, yes that was his name... " Niicahhh... " And she told of how the dock district group had failed, and were currently in the commons. And though he was tired, so tired, he knew it was not over. He reformed his group thinking to himself... "why is it never as easy as the orders? " Looking at the those who had died from his orders, the homes still burning, hearing the shouts and cries of those who were still dying. He shook off his troll form and tended those he could, then set out with those who volunteered to see about the Civics district....._

  • ((CLEAR! bzzzzzzzzzzzzztttt))

  • ((Greatest…story...ever))

  • It all began with the stew. Civil war is inconvenient. The shops are closed, all out of basil and oregano, and Kala, in her haste to flee the city had forgotten to bring any.

    The stew was bland and the Fool sat, feeling helpless, not being able to do anything about it.

    He heard a child crying.

    In his head he breifly considered the idea of the donut. "Who would want a pastry with a hole in the middle?" he asked himself. "I would." himself replied.

    Then he heard the child crying again. "A child is crying," he thouht to himself. "Astute observation." himself replied.

    He walked over to the little girl.

    "Why are you crying?" The Gnome asked.

    "Papa said he would come find find me. He said that there were people who needed his help, and that he would come find me after he helped them."

    "And you are crying because you don't want him to come find you?"

    "He didn't come back, he said he would come find me three days ago."

    "Maybe he is still helping people." The Fool replied. "Whats that?" He asked, pointing behind her.

    As she turned her head, and glowing pink and fuschia butterfly appeared behind her head. It flew around her head, and as she reached to touch it, her hand passed right through. It stuck out its little butterfly tongue at her and flew off for her to chase.

    The Fool considered adding garlic to the stew. The Camp smelled funny. There was a constant drone of moaning from the wounded, the smell of blood mingled in the air with the noxious odor of death.

    The Fool considered using onions instead. He thought about Warmachines. In particular he thought about how effectively they would mash potatoes and other tubers.

    Another child was crying.

    He added garlic to the stew.

    The child was still crying, even though he had added garlic to the stew.

    He went over the the child.

    "Why are you crying?" He asked the little boy.

    "I fell down." The little boy said, displaying a skinned knee.

    "Oh." Said the Fool. "Want some stew?"

    "Sure!" He poured three bowls of stew and a pink and fuschia butterfly flew up to them, a little girl in tow. He gave the boy and girl each a bowl of stew, and ate some himself.

    He reconsidered the idea of donuts. He became distracted by thoughts on dual Jabberwockers and how they might increase momentum for his Warmachine project.

    A large image of a Shadow Fiend sprouted from nowhere an did a little tapdance number to the delight of the boy and girl. Two other boys saw the curious sight and came over. Somehow, a bowl of stew appeared in each of their hands.

    An idea occured to the strange gnome. It is likely that somewhere, Senator Mildsilver was in the middle of making plans to retake the city, and his eye twitched almost imperceptibly.

    "You guys want to learn a song?" The Fool asked the four children.

    "Yeah!" they replied.

    "Ok, this is how it goes," said the Fool

    "Its a…. Badger badger badger badger, Mush-room! Mush-room! Its a... Badger badger badger badger, Mush-room! Mush-room! Snake snake! Oh no! its snake..."

    "But I don't like snakes!" said one of the boys.

    "Oh." The Fool said, crestfallen. "How about parakeets?"

    "Pair of what?" the boy asked

    "Erm.. a pair annoyed." The Fool replied. "What do you like?"

    "Ummm..... Armadillos!" The boy said enthusiatically.

    "Ok then, Its a... badger badger badger badger, Mush-room! mush-room! its a... badger badger badger badger, Mush-room! Mush-room! Armadillo! Armadillo! Oh no! its an Armadillo... its a badger badger badger badger, Mush-room! Mush-room! its a... badger badger badger badger, Mush-room! Mush-room! Armadillo! Armadillo! Oh no! its an armadillo..."

    Soon the song was firmly stuck in the heads of everyone in the camp, commoners and nobles alike were humming along. Heffa started singing in a gruff voice.

    "badger badger badger..."

    The Fool asked around and discovered that all four of the children were orphans, so he adopted them.

    He suddenly came up with the perfect solution to the energy core dillemma that was holding up construction of the Keep Warmachine. He got distracted by a mushroom and promptly forgot it.

    A bunch of people wanted him to go in the sewers. Zyphlin and Roland and Jirka, who he kind of liked even though she always used that evil spell that got rid of his invisibility. The pretty elf lady was there, she protected him from the Bad Magic. Mariston, who wanted to look like Roland was there too. He thought they were stinky. The sewers, not the people. Lots of fighting and yelling Zyphlin kept stepping on spike. Fool thought it was silly. It made him giggle. Muffins. Stinky place. Lots of noise up above. Sounded like people were dying. Muffins.

    He sang the badger song alot. Much to the annoyance of the others. They thought he should be quiet. Something to do with not wanting to make noise while creeping through the sewers in enemy territory. Fool thought that was a bunch of hooy. They were just looking for an excuse to shut him up. He wasn't falling for that old trick.


    They want to find a warmachine. The Gnome wanted to find a Warmachine too. Finding a working one would help him in building one.

    Concentrating on finding warmachine magic.

    The gnomes heart was crushed like a little oragami kangaroo under the feet of a warmachine. He could feel the life being snuffed from the limp corpse of his Very Favoritest Senator, and one of his Bestest Friends

    He broke from the casting circle and looked over to where Roland lay, surrounded by Black Dragon Knights. In a fit of rage he let loose savage bursts of fire into their faces, peeling the flesh from their bones and filling the air with the noxious odor of burning hair and cooked meat. He sought out the one whose sword had taken a life so precious to him and gave a less merciless fate.

    Fear is a funny thing. It comes in so many flavors. Some are afraid of snakes, and some of spiders. are afraid of hieghts and some of small spaces. Some are afraid for themselves, and some are afraid for others. Some are afraid to act, and some are afraid not to.

    This man was afraid of what awaited him in the unknown. He knew he had made some bad choices, and he was afraid of the price. He was also afraid of bunnies.

    He tasted his fear. Illusions so real he could taste the carrots on their breath. Their little pink noses wiggling menacingly, their bushy tails bunched, their hindquarters like coiled springs ready to pounce. His dread was palpable. Little whiskers tickled the side of his face as a voice spoke in a silken voice.

    "Whats up Doc? Don't you like us? Don't you think we are cute? You are ours now..."


    His heart stopped. His breath stilled and his lungs burned. His muscles cramped, deprived of oxygen. His thoughts grew fuzzy, bunnies spun around him, as he drifted into darkness.

    "Clear!" The Fool shouted.

    Electrical energy coursed through the body of Roland Brynmor. His unbeating heart may have jolted into weak action, but no breath escaped his pale lips.

    The Fool stood aside and let Jirka by to do what she could. The Soul of Roland Brynmor had already begun its journey to Helm. A glimmer of life remained though. The nice elf lady, Eowein crushed a diamond in her bare hand and brought most of him back, though in a very weakened state.

    Fool wiped the salty tears from his eyes and breathed a sigh of releif.

    Everyone started fussing about the city again.

    Blah blah blah. Muffins.

    Then they entered the chamber.

    It was a treasure room. Warmachine parts litered the ground, a rusted Chassi lay slumped in the corner. But more importantly, there were books. Piles and piles of books, all about warmachines. Fool crammed as many as he could carry into his 5 magic bags before following the others up into the city.

    He spent most of the rest of the war reading his warmachine books. He looked up occasionally to kill a few people who got on his nerves, a few black dragon knights, some evil mage types, Captain Sent, etc...

    They went into a room to rest and discovered some children stowed away in a hidden shelter under the floor. They children were very uncooperative, not like the ones Fool adopted at all, so Zyphlin put them to sleep with a song. Then Fool teleported them back to the camp.

    Blah blah blah.. more fighting, blah blah...

    Fool read some more, killed some more Black Dragon Knights.

    Reconsidered the idea of Donuts.

    Sang his badger song.

    Suddenly the war was over.

    Fool took the four children to the Emerald Tower where they now sing happily in its empty halls.

    The stew has gotten cold.

    The End.

  • Narfell DM

    ((this is the story from Chaevre's eyes, based on what i remember and with some modifications, sorry to those whos names were not mentioned this story was done at work and by memory, the story is for ic purposes and for interest purposes so anything i wished to leave out ic'ly i have put in parentheses))

    Civil War a Merchants Point of View.

    The winds swept through the nars from the north, a chill wind suited to the occasion, hundreds of people made homeless from the civil war milled about, wives and daughters saying their farewells to their fathers and sons. Anyone that was of age and strong enough to hold a blade was being suited up for batlle, many knew they may not be coming back, but in their hearts then knew that they must retake the city or they might as well be dead anyway.

    As the sun was setting I looked to the north, watching the tiny figures perched on the parapets of the stone walls that surrounded the great city, much of those who were within those walls were hired mercenaries or the previous residents turned traitors either by force or by their own will, it did not matter to me, they will die either way. "If they Surrender, then Take Prisoners!" Came a shout from one of the commanders. I could hear the smirks and scoffs coming from many of the less reputable within the force, myself included, "If they surrender, they are that much easier to kill." I whispered to myself.

    ((Looking at the near set sun I slipped off away from the croud, I needed some time alone to prepare myself and reflect on what the next days assault would bring, kneeling in a secluded area away from the eyes and ears of the rest of the world I speak quietly some prayers to my faith, Im not a religious person, but Mask has done more for me then anyone I know I live my life around his Dogma and in this time i figured a silent prayer couldnt hurt.))

    I return as the sun completely sets and the fields are blanketed in blackness, lit only my the torces, the fires, and the odd glowing ring that many yound adventurers like to wear, up on the hilltop behind the tower where a field hospital has been setup to tend the wounded, I take a spot near a banner pole and look towards all the gathering armies, after some moments a young lad probably only seen a dozen winters approaces from behind and taps me on the shoulder, "Good evening my lady," said the young man. "I was wondering if you might have a sword I may use for the coming battle?" I looked him up and down appraisingly and a slight grin forms on my face.

    "Yes lad, though they are extrememly high quality and equally expensive."
    "Umm, well how much then is the cheapest?"
    "Well what kind of sword are you looking for? I have Bastard swords, Longswords, a Shortsword, and a Scimitar."
    "Whatever is cheapest, im a little low on coin. . ."
    "The cheapest blade I have is the Assassins Rage, but it takes some skill to wield."
    "Oh? And what kind of sword is that?"
    "It is a bastard sword."
    "Ahh I see, well how about the longswords?"
    I did through all my magical pouches to determine which sword would be my cheapest. "Probably the Goblins Bane sword, only 600 gold."

    "Ok, hmm, would you be willing to give to me for 550?"
    "Do you have the 550 on you?"
    "No but I can get it."
    "Alright get the coin and ill sell to you at that price."
    At that point the young lad heads off in the direction of the refugee camp. I turn back to looking over the group of adventurers, several minutes later another tap, but this time it is my lower back, I turned around but could see nothing, it is dark and the light of the torches must have thrown off my nightvision, so i squint my eyes and try to pierce the blackness.

    "Miss Chaevre' . . " Came a voice. "Are you still selling that shortsword?"
    I looked down where the voice was coming from and see the one known as Gears, a small hin sneak, skilled with traps and other rougish things.

    "Aye im still selling it, you want it?"
    "Do I get a wartime discount?" he says hopeful.
    "No." Bluntly. He give s a slight dissapointed look.
    "Was the price still 2000?"
    "Hmm, not that high let me double check." "I take out my large journal which i use to keep track of inventory and prices and flip through it to locate the blades cost. "The shortsword in question is for 1700 gold." I look at him to try and read his face to see if he found the price acceptable, using his features to guess if i could have gone up or not, though as I would expect of him his features were unreadable.

    "Alright ill take it." He starts diging through hos coin purse and counts out the coins.
    At this moment the lad from before returns, probably has the coin for the blade though im curious as to where he got it.

    "Chav?" He speaks the shortened version of my name, likely because his toungue cannot form the accent to pronounce it, i dont like being called Chav though I manage to hide my discontentment.

    "Yes?" I look at him and he seems a bit nervous.
    "A Dwarf told me to tell you to sell me the blade for 200 by order of Nico. . ." He gives me a look like he really doesnt want to be presenting me with a second hand order."

    "Well, tell him that he can take the order and shove it up his ass, the price is 600 and is non-negotiable." I snapped at him, and he jumps back a bit before nodding and running off again.

    I dig through one of my bags and remove a shortsword, razor sharp and crafted with unsurpassed skill, runes along the hilt and the blade reveal it to be no ordinary sword, I hand it to Gears as he hands me the large pouch full of gold. I take the coin and stick it in a magic pouch i keep hidden in my belt and then i remove a small journal which i use to keep track of all transactions i make. Flipping to the last page i write down what i sold, who i sold it too, and how much was paid for the item. I then take out my inventory journal and scratch out the item that has just been sold. Not long after finishing doing this the young man returns yet again, but this time he is accompanied by a mob of Dwarves.

    "Chae. " Grunts the stout dwarf.
    "Yes Rolert?" I look at him, then my eyes move over each dwarf curiously.
    "Yeh under orders teh sell de lad deh blade fer 200, cuz tis wartime ye know?"
    "And who are these orders coming from?"
    "frumma Nico, evertin been discounted fer de wars, cuz lotsa supplies are needed."
    "Ok then, have Nico come to me and make up the other 400 and then i will sell to you for 200." Said sternly like she doesnt care about what he just said.

    "Lass, why ye nay jus give deh discount? Deh lads defenceless. ." He doesnt sound convincing, not that i would buy it if he was convincing.

    "If you want me to discount the weapon ask the one who owns it, it is not mine to alter the price."
    "an who might dat be?"
    "Kaell of Spellweavers."
    For whatever reason the dwarf turns red and starts fumin and muttering about the Spellweavers.
    "I wasn't given a discount when I bought my goods, why should I give you one?" I stated factually.
    "Arright, how much was deh blade?"
    "600 gold."
    He grumbles and digs out the coin and hands it to me, I raise an eyebrow and look at him hesitating to sell the blade just yet, unlike Gears this dwarf is easy to read and I know i can get more from him.

    "Rolert, rather then buying this blade, why not pay a little more and upgrade to a better weapon?" I show him Goblins Bane and then I show him a mastercrafted Longsword of Steel.

    He eyes the blade a moment before looking up at me. "How much?"
    I check an old pricelist for the value, then doing some quick and simple math in my head jacked that price up suitably.
    "It is 900 gold, just 300 more then the Goblinsbane." I said as persuasively as i can, which was enough to convince the Dwarf apparently. I take the gold and hand him the sword, he asks for armor as well, something cheap, so i sell him a suit of black leathers, finally i think to myself, been trying to get rid of that for a long time. I complete the transactions and make notes in my journals accordingly, a profitable night so far lets home i survive the next day.

    It is early in the morning now, the rooster is just waking up and getting ready to signal the morning, carrion birds circle quietly overhead knowing what feasts are to come, not a sound among the ranks except for the shuffling of leather and metal. An inspiration speach is given by the Magistrate Zyphlin, many cheers are heard from the crouds, after the speach the crouds break off into their separate groups, the plan is to assault the city from every andle, the trebuchets sending kegs over the walls into the city, an elite covert group going through the sewers, the more powerful of the force heading from the Civic district, and the remainders through the commerce district.

    When the assault began I held back for some waiting for the bloodshed of the initial attack to occur, the group I was in was attacking the north wall, and anyone who knows anything of war knows that they are at a huge disadvantage, I was not willing to put myself at pointless risk. After the wall was taken I came invisibly and provided some minor enchantments to the frontal fighters to give them an edge, taking the commons was easy enough though we did suffer heavy casualties, Pete fell first, then Laerlilly, Rome the lad I sold the blade to earlier, Sev someone I don't know personally but i heard several mention his name, and a large brutish orcish woman I have never seen before, though she proved to handle herself quite well. Aside from the initial casualties we suffered among those in my group were Mog, Sy, Khel, and others im sure i have never seen before. We took the commons very swiftly, strategically removing the mages that guard the alleys and brutally beating down the mercenary defenders, when the Black Dragon Knight charged us I immediately cast protection spells on myself, one to absorb damage from non magic weapons, one to shield myself from attacks, and one to conceal myself and make it almost impossible to hit me, the Knight by the time i finished casting had killed almost half the group, Mog, Sy and the orc were struggling to fight it finding it almost impossible to hit him, i charged in after casting to assault the knight convinced my spells will keep me safe, the moment i stepped near the highly trained fighter i realised i was wrong, the Black Knight turned his blade guessing my exact location and struck hiome with his blade, he then reversed his thrust and slashed at me again, I could not believe he was able to discern my true location and even more dismayed at the precision of his attacks, as soon as i jumped in i was falling back bleeding all over the place, i was amazed that he was able to penetrate every defence i had placed obn myself, i watch the battle as i hastily treat my wounds firing arrows when i am able to get a shot, after a long hard battle the Knight was killed, we were all to weary to cheer our victory knowing this was only the beginning, I polymorphed into troll form to allow for my wounds to heal, i get looks from the others knowing what they were thinking, that i should have shifted initially to fight the knight, but no that is not my way, I am better when i can be versatile, as a troll i cannot wear equiptment or cast spells, all i use the troll for is if i expect to take a beating in a long battle or for emergency healing, i take less damage as a human anyway, whenever im hit though i cannot take to much. We secure the commons and reinforcements arrive, the dead are raised by clerics and the party is healed by our clerics in the group, we rest and prepare for the continued fight ahead.

    The party gathers to plan the next assault, we decide to clear out the streets of the traitors moving from corner to corner massacreing anything that stood in our way. As we headed down Bards street we came face to face with one of the captains of the enemies, 2 of the defenders accompanied us to fight the former captain and another officer as well as its mercenary guards. This time I wasn't taking any chances, I cast Shield, Mage armor, Ghostly Visage, and Improved invisibility on myself before i shifted into a troll, I growled and attacked them head on, focussing on the mercenaries first to get them out of the way, Mog and Sy attacked the captain and officer and the rest shot their bows and crossbows from safety at a distance, Khel firing off the occasional magic missile or melphs acid arrow, It was almost impossible to hit the Captain and Mog had taken a brutal beating over some time, he fell back and as a half transparent troll i proceded to take the Officer and Captain alone the concealment providing safety from their strikes while the others recieved healing, it seemed the soldiers had an unlimited supply of healing potions, everytime one nearly fell it healed back up making it increasingly tough, I had started taking a hard beating and I retreated to the alley to allow myself to heal in trollform, by then Sy had jumped in to melee to provide enough time for me to regenerate, it wasnt long before he too had taken a beating, though he didnt have the advantage of improved invisibility as I had, half healed i decided to risk jumping back in and the fight continued, Sy healed up Mog so mog could continue the attack and Sy stepped back to put several enchantments on himself before he too took Troll form, something i didnt see coming but an invited surprise for certain, the 3 of us focussed on the officer and took him down quickly before turning our focus to the captain, Mog again took a nasty beating and Sy ordered him to fall back, 2 trolls should be more then enough to handle the Captain, even in our massive forms we found it almost impossible to hit the guy he dodged almost every attack we through at him and deflected most the rest, the battle must have raged for over a full hour for my spells left me including my concealment making me easy meat for the captain, one two and three swings and he had all but killed me, i fell back to heal yet again while Sy took the captain solo, it took several minutes for the healing to complete, before I jumped back into battle I summoned forth my faery familiar to renew the concealment on me I needed, having the pixie was most handy to me, being unable to cast in troll form the fey provides an extra card in the hand in case of emergencies, she recast on me and i unsommoned her and charged into battle yet again, by now the Captian had consumed all the healing he had and it was only a matter of time before we took him down, yet another hour later almost after both me and Sy had out energy spent and all our enchantments faded we finally killed the treasonous Captain, as a finalilty to the attack i grudgingly stepped on the corpses shoulder crushing his arm, shoulder, and collarbone, the Bards College secured andthe Captain defeated we had just left to clean the streets of the remaining rats, the Commerce District had been retaken for the refugees!

    Part II

    After some much needed and well deserved rest we had set up yet again to continue the assault, we had recieved word that the attack on the Docks had failed miserably and that the battle in the Civic wasnt faring well either. there were reports of another Captain guarded by 2 confirmed Black Dragon Knights, definately an attack on the docks was out of the question, I had opted to assist in the Civic District so that the 2 armies may regroup for the final assault on the docks, I had prepared a few different spells to include enchantments for the others, we as a group moved into the next district, it had seemed far more battle torn then the commerce district had, we feared to know what me may face here, we had the scouts spread out to see what there was, they reported a black knight and a few mercenaries as well as a mage, we took out the mage then lured the mercenaries and knights out towards us, several people attacked the mercs and the knights, i cast Haste on the two that were attacking the Black Dragon Knight while the others dispatched the mercs, with the haste the knights was so much easier to defeat and after a short battle he was felled, suddenly there was cries coming from towards the temple of Tyr, we rushed through the streets cutting down the scattered mercs that got in our way, as a collective group they were easier to dispatch, until we arrived at the temple to see the Paladin Kara and another, they were the lone survivors of the party that was to attack this district, Talgrath their leader had fallen in battle and the district was yet still under the control of the rebels, feeling that they had things under control now we retreated back to the commerce district to regroup, recover, and make sure that we hold the commons until the other district was taken, several hours later we had recieved word from the scouts that the Civic District was now in the control of the refugee forces. The time was near to assault the Docks District, I rested and prepared some spells for the frontline fighters as well as extended my own choice of spells so that i could hold out in troll form for longer, we attacked the Docks in force, there were dozens of fighters, wizards, and officers of the armies, the assault was lead by General Lavindo and followed suit by myself and Kara before the rest charged ahead, we cut into the opposition with fury and worked our way through their lines, unexpected though we had allowed our selves to become flanked, as Black Dragon Knights poured out from all sides around us, many fell some sooner then others, in troll form i attacked the groups to allow for the others to have a chance to get away for healing, Maya and Kara and many others attacked the knights relentlessly suffering many wounds to their expert training until finally the assault group broke and fled, while in troll form allowing my wounds to heal i summoned forth my faery again and had it put the concealment where it was better suited, the pixie flew over the attackers to reach kara and cast the concealment on her, the spell will grant her some more efficiency and likely will save her life, as little love i have for the paladin she will hold off the Black Knights suitably, i retreated further into the commerce district as the last of the assault group broke and fled, well all but the paladin anyway, the last thing i saw was Zyphlin surrounded by knights. Looking over the many wounded and recovering I allow the remainder of my wounds to heal over, reverting my form I pulled out my spellbook, i intended to prepare enhancement magics this time for the defenders and more especially for Maya after seeing her cleave one of the black knights in two, mage armor, strength, haste, improved invisibility, haste, and haste, with this she should be able to massacre the remaining defences, i sat down to concentrate on memorizing the spells, a huge explosion from the docks broke my concentration and all the spells i had been preparing to memorise were lost from my thoughts, i did not have the time to try prepairing the spells again as the attack was reaching its climax, we all charged forth into the docks, this time i had not a single spell prepared to assist, and strangely there was not an enemy in sight, the remaininder of the coup had retreated only a few stragglers were left, all of which we executed mercylessly, at last Peltarch has been saved, well whats left of it anyway. We will have to begin repairs on the structures, and who knows maybe even make some modifications.

  • She passed through dreams and shadow, and planes of gibbering things
    She passed the Wall of Sorrows, and through the Fugue on angel wings

    She descended from the heavens, borne on shaft of light
    She descended onto grasslands, beyond most mortals sight.

    She walked from hill to hill, towards a city filled with strife
    She walked from tent to tent, past cold and shattered life

    She touched upon his face, in memory of her past
    She touched upon his heart, in memory of what would last.

    She continued her journey north, though battle raged beside
    She continued her journey north, and walked past gates inside.

    He huddled in the darkness, a boy of just shy of eight
    He huddled in the streets, by bloodshed near the gate

    “I will take you home”, she said, “And lead you from this land”
    “I will take you home”, she said, “You just have to take my hand”

    “Will I see my Mommy”, he asked, “who tried to comfort me with words?”
    “Will I see my Daddy”, he asked, “who tried to protect me with his swords?”

    She nodded and she smiled to him, “They wait in another land”
    She nodded and she smiled to him as he took her outstretched hand

    Together they walked southward, though battle raged beside
    Together they walked southward, and passed the gates outside

    They ascended from the grasslands, beyond most mortals sight.
    They ascended to the heavens, borne on shafts of light

    They passed the Wall of Sorrows, carried by angel wings
    They passed through dreams and shadows, and avoided darker things

    And there upon the sunlit fields of Lathander’s heaven vast
    The little boy and parents, were united again at last

    And as Robyn watched the battle, and unfurled her wings once more
    Her tears descended from heaven, like rain upon the war.

    • Wolfhere

  • Maya's view of the war can be found in entries 46, 47, and 48 in her jounal.


  • In the first assault, The city burned. Corpse lay scattered all over the streets and the stench of burning bodies and wood filled the air.
    War, always brought a smile to Damiens face, as strange as that might sound to some first and for most he was a soldier. Carrying out orders, of course they were orders he enjoyed. Killing always made him feel stronger more powerfull.

    Damien was rallying defenses at the moment helping to gather people to dig the trenches and set up blockades to hamper the enemys movement. When suddenly a small force of enemies attacked.

    "The horn blasted out the defense. Damien on the front line climed up out of the hole he was in and grabbed his shield and morningstar that was within easy reach. After properly equippeinfg hisself he charged.

    He and a group of five others took on the forcee of ten men head on whilst others hung back shooting with their bows and slings. Racing up to the first the Merc sent a crushing blow his way he raised his shield to counter, blocking the blow he hauled his morningstar back and smashed the merc squrely on the side of the head. Blood gushed from the mercs wound as his head was pulverized. THe blood sprayed in all directions. coating Damien in a thik mist of it. He quickly went on to engage another.

    THe next was not so easy a kill. They traded blows back and forth niether gaining much ground till The merc finally got a blow throuh. It caught damien in his side.. Blood poured out but damien did not relent his assault. In fact the merc turned white when he saw that Damien was completely unfased by the blow and in fact looked almost as if he enjoyed the pain. The mercs momentary suprise cost him and once again a merc lay on the ground with half a head.

    Continueing on with his wound DAmien helped another soldier fell two more foes before the battle was finnally over. When surrvaying the dammage they saw that indded their commander had fallen. She lay on the ground bleeding out and there were no potions or clerics around. Her jaw looked mishapen. She would not survive.

    Damien shrugs at this thinking. Casualty of war and I care not for this woman anyways. Better her than me. He looks at his own wound an begins poking it roughly to get a spike of pain. His eyes glaze over in excstasy.

    What is more is that more than one of the other soldiers is laying in his own blood. A terrible time indeed. the trenches need completed so damien returns to his work. a little sad that this round of fighting is over.

  • Sev’s fingers bled. But again and again he fired his bow, reaching for the arrows in the quiver slung low on his hip, ignoring the torn skin of his fingertips. Again and again he fired, and again and again his arrows found their mark. Clattering off helms, embedded in shields and piercing chain mail. Koreth’s mercenaries fell before the onslaught of the refugee assault.

    Sev had never been to Peltarch before. He’d never even wanted to visit, let alone fight a war there. But necessity makes strange demands at times. He should have known something was amiss when the caravan failed to show up. In ten long years old Birr the Trader had never been late, but Sev had just put it down to inclement weather; there had been a lot of snow over Narfell of late.

    Two tendays later and Sev was worried however. No caravans had arrived from the East nor had the riverboats from Peltarch arrived. They were just a small farming community at the feet of the Giantspires; their town didn’t even have a name. But crops can only be harvested once a year. They were dependant upon trade from Peltarch to survive, and trade wasn’t coming.

    “And now I know why”, Sev reflected as he let lose an arrow, striking a Northerner in the base of the neck. He saw the man fall, splayed face forward with one leg twitching in the dirt as he died. Why had the Northerners come to fight? Not for survival, but for gold. They didn’t care how many civilians were slaughtered; they positively thrived on it in fact. They didn’t care about the homesteads they were killing, if they were even aware. And now another was dead.

    He looked about sharply, taken note of the locations of his companions. He’d barely known them a day. Here he was in a strange city fighting with strangers, elves and half-orcs. A farmer amongst warriors, he and they had little in common.

    “War makes brothers of us all”, he thought as he let slip another arrow. Where had he heard that said? His father? His grandfather? No. No, Sergeant Tanner had said it. Sev smiled to himself, “The old man would be proud of me now”.

    No sooner had he arrived at Peltarch, finding a camp full of refugees and the city aflame than he was marching to its defence. He didn’t give it a second thought when he saw the camp full of frightened women and crying children. It was clear whose side he was on. And the sooner the invaders were removed from the Icelace the sooner trade would return to his home.

    He ran on after Sy’wyn, through the gates of the city. The elf made a good commander, worked at keeping his men alive as well as killing the enemy. And the enemy fell quickly. Arrows caught them in the throat and between the links of their armour. Those that survived the hail of arrows were quickly beaten down by the two half-orcs.

    Advancing down the street, catapult fire arcing overhead to strike the city, they found themselves in an open area. A circle of stone, perhaps now a public area of some sort. Once beautiful but now ruined; the invaders had formed a crude barricade of carts and wagons against one wall. No doubt the same wagons that were destined for his homestead to feed the families there.

    The warrior known as Pete leapt the barricade at a run; Mog and Sy’wyn close on his heels. The fighting was as fierce as any Sev had seen on the frontier. More so; these were no hobgoblins raiding the chicken coupe. A flash of blue light flashed over his head and Sev ducked reflexively. It picked up speed, accelerating into the midst of the mêlée before exploding with a flash against the chest of a robed elven woman. Sev laughed. There was a mage or two on their side.

    As quickly as it had begun the scuffle ended. Four Northerners lay dead in a heap, their elven companion scorched by the strange energy. They secured the area quickly; Sev was amazed at how quickly all his years of drilling came back to him. Sel’wyn directed the front-liners to hold a choke point running east from the area, whilst Sev positioned the archers to grant covering fire.

    Taking a few moments to tighten his bowstring and wipe the sweat from his eyes, Sev surveyed his companions. Elrien and Mog had their bows taught, Arishaka hefting a throwing-axe in her large hand. Both half-orcs stood ready to dive into the mêlée should Sy’wyn, Pete and the spellblade Chaevre require aid. Behind him he heard Khel murmuring under his breath, no doubt preparing another spell whilst the elf Elrien quickly readied arrows.

    Suddenly loud footsteps echoed down the street behind him, the marching of many men. A bead of icy sweat ran down the back of Sev’s neck as he turned around, ready to draw his dagger.

    “Reinforcements!” Sev cried out with it relief, barely able to hide the joy in his voice. A small battalion of Defenders had taken position in the open area behind them, the officer approaching them, addressing Sev. “Good work civilians; we’ll secure the Commons. Push on towards the Bardic College; we have reason to believe that is where their command centre in this district lies. I’ll send more reinforcements along when they get here. ”

    Nodding to the officer silently, Sev turned out shouted the order down the line “We strike for the Bardic College! Clear it out and hold the area.” They set out silently, making quick progress, until the fury of the invaders was unleashed.

    Pouring from alleys and doorways, the Northlanders, Black Dragon Knights and turncoat Defenders fell upon the group. Sev felt his blood rush, the pounding of his heart all he could hear in his ears as enemy after enemy fell before them. Wheeling through the throng, catching a Northerner across the jaw with edge of his bow he saw one of his companions cut down out of the corner of his eye.

    But on they fought. Sev barely felt the blade of his enemy scrape across his back before Laerlilly’s arrow found its mark; slaying Sev’s attacker. He heard a cry behind him as Arishaka fell, then Laerlilly herself. Their numbers were thinning, but so too where those of the enemy.

    Then a shout came from behind, “It’s Captain Rashor himself!” Sev was overtaken by two friendly Defenders as they joined the charge. There in front of the Bardic College stood a Defender in gold livery, flanked by two officers. No further word was spoken as combat was joined. The ring of steel on steel echoed throughout the streets as combat was joined. Defender fighting Defender, refugee fighting invader.

    “Dammit all Rashor! You’re beaten; throw down your blade!” yelled Sev at the traitor, but Captain Rashor’s only response was to double his attack. “Don’t think he listenin’“, Mog’s deep voice rumbled as one of their Defender allies was felled by the Captain’s blade.

    “Time to end this then”, Sev said quietly, taking a bead on the Captain. Taking a breath, he let loose his arrow and watched it fly true.

    It struck the front of Captain Rashor’s helm…

    …and ricocheted up into the air.

    “Dammit!” Sev reached for another arrow, but he didn’t need to take another shot. He smiled grimly as Rashor was finally born down by Sy’wyn and Chaevre, the last of the enemy to fall.

    Sev stood there in the silence that followed. Soaked in his enemies’ blood and some of his own, his chain mail torn. Sitting on a pile of rubble, he rested his longbow across his knees, wiping the sweat from his eyes. Suddenly a cheer went up around him from the countless Defenders flooding into the area.

    They had secured Peltarch’s Commerce District. Nearly a third of the city was back in its rightful hands. Spearheaded by a handful of strangers, one of them a farmer that had never even seen the city. There was plenty more fighting to do, but for now Sev could use a rest. They’d need him again soon, this unfamiliar city he now called home.

    “War makes brothers of us all.”

  • The Battle of the Commerce District: The Commons Won

    The anxious rush just before a battle swept through her, and suddenly Lilly was nervous. What would happen? Would they live? Would this simply be a repeat of the previous flight from the city? How many times could they rush the walls before enemy archers killed them all? These and a countless other grim fortunes flitted through Lilly's head as she kissed Mirkali with all the passion of a woman who had accepted she might never see her love again. Why was she going? It was easy to ask, but the answer was always the same.. she had too.

    Looking back, she could hear the shouts of children as the ran giggling in one of their many games, how long could it last? The groans of the wounded in the field hospital never ceased, would they ever see their city whole again? Every day the people's spirits broke just a little more.. if they didn't fight, then all was lost. Lilly couldn't stand for that. She gave her kiss to Mirkali, who marched off as surely as she did, and she prepared herself next to Drelan, her swordbrother. She bid her goodbye to Ocean, she wasn't going and Lilly thought no less of her. They marched back to the fray, back to the front, sure as they knew they walked back to the Abyss.

    As soon as they neared the gates the fighting was fast and furious, archers lined the walls and volleys were launched before any of the attackers could begin to ready to themselves. Good men, women, elves, hins and dwarves fell in that first assault, though the force surged through broken gates, the archers steadily beat back. Arrows flew across the myriad of melees that erupted wherever breath was drawn.. all for naught. From within the city a great force rushed to counter-act the mighty charge, and against the odds the attackers were forced to flee. Their numbers simply couldn't take the courtyard while fresh archer's took the walls and vantage points. Arrows rained down, and the brave forces of Peltarch were forced to flee, the attack broken for the moment.

    In the Nars Pass, the great captains argued and debated over how to carry out the attack. They had to gain a foothold in the city, somehow.. A three-pronged attack was decided. A force to strike the civic district gates, a force to sweep the docks, and one to push from the gates of the original attacks. Against luck and all better judgement, Lilly found herself in the third group, prepared to charge the gates again but with fewer numbers.

    It was only Tymora's whim if they succeeded, but that was all they had to wish for. Lilly could imagine Beshaba giggling all over herself, but her resolve was firm, they would win. Her bow knocked with an arrow, she followed the meager force along the wall to the gates. A cry went up, and arrows hit the ground around them, it was the work of but moments and the returning volley laid the few archers left on the wall to rest. Perhaps the other attacks had struck already, surely they'd not leave the wall that poorly defended.

    It proved true as mercenaries rushed from the gates with swords readied to be bloodied. The fight was fierce, and the half orcs Arashika and Mog did well to stand toe to toe with the sellswords, when the cries ended only the meager force stood. They all rushed inside.

    Into the courtyard, where were they? Would they leave the courtyard undefended? Then the sellswords poured from the commons towards the meager group, and were met with a volley of arrows, bolts, and axes twirling end over end. Then the half orcs were among the fighters again, taking attacks that would have cleaved through Lilly's armor easily, yet dealing twice what they received. Pete was there too, his charming smile gone as he ducked and swung his sword, any vulnerable spot on the enemy feeling his sting and soon enough falling to the ground to feel no more. This fighting was longer, as reinforcements came in from the commons and markets. Archers, even a mage assaulted the group, kept well safe by the wall of fighters.

    Into the commons the fight poured, Chaevre using her spells and blade to wreak havoc among the fighters and most especially upon the mages and archers. Sy'wyn fought as he could and healed as was needed. His spells perhaps the only thing that evened the odds against the onslaught.
    There were other's in the fighting, Elrien, a man named Rome, and a few others she didn't immediately remember the names of. They supported as they could, arrows screaming across the commons to keep the enemy honest if not exactly finding a chink in armor upon every shot.

    Then suddenly, the fight was done, and nothing moved but the now ragged bunch. They all looked around, ready to face hell should it be ready to embrace them. Nothing stirred, the commons was won. The poorly taxed group sunk down for its rest, the wizard, Khel, surely needed it, and Sy'wyn could use the moment to pray. The half orcs no longer bled from what seemed a dozen serious injuries each, though they still would be considerred far from fresh. Rest was elusive, however, as more rushed to the attack from the markets and from deeper into the town. Arrows were loosed, and sword and shield were born again as battle was renewed. Her throat raw already, Lilly began to sing a war chant her Da had taught her, the effect causing the already tiring fighters to lift their blades just a bit easier, to strike just a bit quicker, and to desire victory just a little more.

    Then the battle was over, and they could rest for a moment. Lilly peeled her armor, and offered what meager healing skills she had. It helped little, but it was better than none at all, and perhaps it saved Sy'wyn from expending himself just a little. Then battle was rejoined again, this time a Black Dragon Knight charging followed by renegade Defenders. The battle was furious, at least Lilly thought it to be so; as she scrambled for a position, her boot slipped in a pool of blood spilled by a fallen sellsword, her unhelmed head connecting solidly with the stoned ground of the commons.

    When she awoke, the Black Dragon Knight was dead, and so was Pete. This attack was already becoming costly. Part of her screamed to turn back, to run, to hide.. the other part expected that their could be nothing left to return hearth and home. The group moved Pete's body to somewhere not likely to be noticed by renegade Defenders, and prepared themselves to press on.

    Reinforcements arrived to secure the commons, and the group minus one brave man pressed on. They had gained Ting, a valuable scout. Her report stated towards Renaldo and the Wilting flower stood many mercenaries and Defenders; towards the Bard college were archers and mages, demons blocking either path it seemed as the group meandered through a man-made Abyss once called home.

    "Let us press to the college." Ting was quick to suggest, though she was overruled by Mog and Arashika who simply strode in the direction indicated for the fighters. "idiots.." she could be heard muttering.

    The fight was another bloody one, there were no one sided battles any more. There was only bloody brawls to the death, blood running down the streets as blade met blade met bone made screams.. then silence save the ragged breaths of the ragged group. Arrows stuck from buildings and armors.. the price of power and war only grew, man by man, blow by blow.

    They retreated back to the commons, needing a break and time to consolidate their gains. Not all seemed quite as tired though, as soon Rome came rushing back with at least three defenders after him, a task that almost cost Lilly her life. She tried to protect the man, but her shield rushes and quick swipes with her scimitar failed to find many gaps in the thick shields and armor of the Defenders. She nearly fell.. only Sy'wyn's healing saved her.

    THe next few skirmishes were much like the others, bloody and brutal. Arashika fell to the next one, more men pulled by Rome trying to act as a scout. Then Lilly fell to the next skirmish, the more highly trained Defender's rushing the group on the heels of Rome, and Lilly trying to shield them from the archers. Her parries and shield, even her enchanted armor could only hold them so long before their heavy strikes felled her. She wasn't dissappointed as the Abyss openned its mouth, and she was swallowed.

    In the blink of an eye, it was over, she was back in the commons. Cheers were raised all around, and Mirkali was there kissing her. She had died evidently, though Sy'wyn had raised her, he truly was a hero. She had no idea how the rest of the fighting went, only that the Defender's still loyal to the Senate cheered that the Commerce district was won. Lilly had seen enough though, for her the battle was over.

    She wobbled weakly, and Mirkali held her, she'd have fell on her face if not for him. She felt honestly frightened, the fighting in the streets, her home a warzone. The blood and gore that littered the streets like so much refuse. For the first time it struck her, as odd a time as it was, she knew Breezy was dead, her little white kitten would be among the rubble. It was too much, she couldn't keep trying to fight beside brave men and true heroes like Sy'wyn, and Mog, and Arashika.

    Mirkali talked with her, soothed her, though she barely heard what he said as reinforcements poured through the gates. Corana went to them and checked them, Lilly in her confused state hit her hard across the face and screamed, "Don't you let him die!" pointing at Mirkali. He would try to stay alive, she could have kept him safe by telling him she needed him to stay with her.. but she couldn't bring herself to do it.. he was needed, and he wanted to win back his city. She couldn't rob him of that, he was a true hero too, he deserved to stand with other heroes while she slunk back to camp, covered in blood never knowing if she'd helped one bit. Before she left though, she heard Mog say, "Lilly help a lot." and for some reason, that made her feel better, somehow she was able to make the walk to the refugee camp, her armor still covered in blood.

    She tried to sneak as much as she could in the camp, not by embarrassment, but because she didn't want any of the children to see her covered in blood from fighting. Ocean spotted her though, and rushed to her, hugging her tight despite the bloody plate. They exchanged words and Lilly tried to stagger off to a tent, her friend little relieved at Lilly's state, though greatly relieved she was back at all. Then all went black as the last bit of energy drained from Lilly, and she collapsed.

    It was only hours later when she awoke in a tent with a few children looking at her and waiting with cups of water and a bowl of soup. She couldn't help but smile, and she felt not a single regret for her part in the battle anymore. If she had to give her own life for these children to have a home.. well, she'd died more than once before.

  • The popular young Captain of the Troff Legion was on patrol, east of Jiyyd, investigating rumors of strange white skinned creatures that had been harrassing wayfarers, when a young Legion soldier with dispatch rode up, stinking of smoke, and covered in a haze of fine soot.

    It was one of General Grag's personal messengers, dressed in the dark colors of the army, with a fine and colorful Troff Legion standard flying from his saddle. The messenger was in an agitated and worn looking state.

    "Ma'am!", the soldier cried, nearly falling forward off his mount as he reined it in. The young boy saluted, and fell into an endless stream of words, trying to relay the desperate summons as fast as humanly possible.

    "General Grag requires your presence, with all the Legion you can muster at once, in the Refugee Camp, near Peltarch. The city has fallen, and the situation is grim!"

    Captain Lyte Bry'Gaede was used to tautly worded orders and short notice. The Troff Legion prided itself in having instant response times to terrible situations, but this seemed grim and dire, even for the General.

    She raised an eyebrow, not displaying any other signs of emotion.

    "Ride with me to Jiyyd, Dispatcher, and share any more intelligence you have for me on the way. Then, find a change of horse, and head for Norwick to find any other Legion that might be there."

    Together they rode, snow flying before them, to Jiyyd, where Troff Legion Headquarters sat.

    Corporals Elrien and Lilin were readying a patrol with the young hin-Paladin Private Mia as the Captain and the General's now exhausted looking dispatcher galloped into town.

    With a measured, practiced voice, the Captain issued orders to her young but trusted Corporals.

    It mattered to none of them that they did not know the foe they would face, nor the odds. They were practiced soldiers, they had worked as brothers and sisters together in the past, against assorted enemies, usually outnumbered, and always, they had survived because of their discipline, their training and equipment.

    They mounted up together, and set off towards Peltarch at a trot. They could see smoke ahead, a harbinger of the dark days to come.

    Captain Bry'Gaede measured the refugee camp with a practised eye. It was a huge affair, women and children in pitched tents scattered accross the landscape, with the awful glow and smoke of the ruined, burning city much to close behind them. A singular hill, with a Temple atop, dominated the camp.

    She noted the guards mostly standing with their families, probably in shock from the recent horrible loss of the town. Many of the important remaining survivors, the politicians, senators, lawyers, dog catchers, whatever they were, seemed to be wandering about on the hilltop, and the Captain saw little in the way of organized patrols of the completely vulnerable camp. Something had to be done, and now, to secure the camp borders.

    Unless the enemy was composed of complete idiots, skirmishing parties would be soon raiding the camp, killing the wounded, taking the women and livestock.

    More Legion were arriving now. A pair of stout dwarvsh brothers, their axes gleaming, had stomped into camp.

    She could see that it would be up to her small company to hold the perimeter until the battered Peltarch survivors could rally. She called together her two squads, one under Corporal Elrien, the other Corporal Lilin, and gave them their orders.

    The Corporal's departed with what Legioneers as were available, picketing the likely areas of attack in the hopes of striking any force before it reached the wounded and the families within the refugee enclave.

    As the young Captain set up a temporary headquarters in the southern section of the encampment, CO. Maythor of the Legion arrived. Captain Lyte felt heartfelt thanks at his arrival, for in truth, she wondered how their small and largely young force would cope with any serious attack upon the camp. Maythor was highly experianced, and an extremely tough fighter. She began to brief the anxious officer on the state of the camp, when sounds of a battle reached their ears.

    The sounds came from the north, in the direction of her two patrols. The two officers rushed forward to find that the patrols had indeed encountered exactly what Captain Lyte had feared…a party of skirmishers bent of disruption and destruction.

    The patrols, together with a few men of Peltarch, had stopped the rebel soldiers, but it had cost one of her men his life.

    It was apparent now to Captain Bry'Gaede that these were not ruffians or hired part time soldiers they faced, but hardened soldiers from the city.

    She thought that the next hours would be long ones.

    She was right.

    With CO. Maythor at the front beside her, and the Legion archers on the hill, the little force threw together a small barracade of wagons. A few camp defenders joined them , but it was still a tiny force.

    When the rebel soldiers of Peltarch charged the hill, Maythor fought like a mad dwarf, and soldiers were tossed about as the archers peppered them with arrows. The old dwarf's prowess with old enchanted axe forced them back towards the city, and all stood huffing but still alive.

    A message arrived from General Grag, and CO. Maythor looked seriously at his Captain.

    "I must join the General in his skirmish near the city," said Maythor with an unusually grim tone. The old warrior handed the girl some potion bottles. "Hold here and do not die." The two exchanged knowing glances.
    The officer marched off, pausing once to look back, a serious, concerned look on his face.

    With that, suddenly, the defensive force holding the refugee camp was perilously overstretched. Captain Lyte, well aware that she was probably the best remaining shield left to hold the hill, tightened her helm and planted her feet. Behind her two small squads were countless women and children and arguing politicians. The cries of brave wounded men, who fell in the battle within the city, could be heard, as each Legion member silently counted heads.

    The counts took prescious little time, as there were few.

    The rebel force charged again, towards the egress to the hill. Captain Lyte glanced back to Corporal Elrien, who silently mouthed the word "ma'am", his bowstring drawn tightly to his cheek.

    She let fly the blessings she had been hoarding for this moment, and felt her Goddesses power surround her. It would not suffice this time, and she well knew it.

    "Fire!" she yelled, as a squad of soldiers closed on the few defenders standing ready to recieve the shock.

    Arrows flew by near her, impacting loudly on the heavy armor of the plated soldiers. She raised her thin curved blade behind her and dressed her elven shield forward and grit her fine elven teeth to recieve the incoming blow.

    She did not stand there for long, but the enemy soldiers did not advance upon that hill, their blood mingling with hers on the ground.

    The Corporals carried on, piling the fallen dead rebels in a wall of death, to slow the next assault, and then tenderly carrying their Captain back to the temple on the hill themselves, forcing back tears and relying on a discipline that she had taught them; to continue, to fight with steel and arrows, until the last of them had fallen defending it, if it came to that.

    Legion. It was what they were.

  • Morning. It wouldn’t seem so strange normally. She would rise, have her tea, and talk with Mariston before morning vespers. This morning was markedly different. She awoke to the rancid smell of burning bodies, timbers, and just about anything else capable of flame within a city.

    It was still dark out. She sat up in her tent home…it was comfortable for a tent and there was enough room for she and Mariston. Though this morning there was a third little body hugging a raggedy stuffed dog lying between where Anna had been lying and the big lump that is Mariston beneath blankets and cloaks.

    Anna took the canteen from her pack and sipping deeply of the water inside seemed to sigh in the simplicity of the action. She had a thousand things to do. She simply wanted to sit here and watch her two boys sleep. One…an all too cavalier knight…Mariston Thel was a gem of a gentleman. He made her smile inside and out. The very thought of him blushing would send her into fits of giggling. The other boy…an all too sad little tow headed boy…his name…Matee.

    Matee is the son of a dockhand. He snuck out of the city with one of the first groups of refugees after he watched his mother be “touched bad and put big knife in her.” His father apparently tried to help his wife get away from the stalwart pillaging defender and was strung up on a lamppost. Matee ran and followed and group out of the city.

    Anna found the boy walking amongst the tents late the first night of the war. He was dragging a stuffed dog behind him. She approached him slowly.

    “Are you all right little one,” Anna asked?

    The boy pushed by her, half being brave half crying. She followed him from a distance. He finally sat down and started to cry.

    “What wrong sweetheart,” Anna asked sitting down near the boy her armor creaking?

    “I don’t got no where to go,” the boy said simpering.

    “Where are your parents.” Anna asked half expecting the answer?

    The boy proceeded to tell of his parent’s demise and his escape to the refugee camp. Nowhere to go and no one in his family left alive. Anna smiled warmly and wiped a tear away from his eye with a mailed finger.

    “I’m Anna and you can stay with me,” She smiled warmly.

    Anna took the little boy to the tent she was sharing with Mariston. She was very happy…Alice had snuck out of the city and now Matee was safe. Alice slept in the tent beside theirs. Matee was supposed to sleep with Alice, but he always managed to find his way into the tent with Anna and Mariston and slept soundly between them.
    During the long days, Anna would come back and forth to check on him. He would play with the other children and would sit and listen to Alice and try to snatch things from here and they would giggle and roll on the ground.

    She took solace that at least one small boy and one lonely girl…had found their way out of the city…and now she and Mariston…could give them some kind of life even if it was in a camp. The nature of war is unforgiving. Her understanding of her place in war was far beyond that of the common man. She was a Priestess of Red Knight. She should not have led that charge. She will stick to what she’s good at. Make the maps, order the supplies, treat the wounded, make the plans.

    The day will move on…and the Priestess of Red Knight will do what is needed.