Faroth Adventure 2017-02-04
James: Sabanin Lucas: Sakool Alice: Erin Dylan: Barron Poorrich Rob: Taj Alan: Laferic
The roosters crow in the gray morning of Sing’jar while our characters start their day. Shouts are heard and orcs are spotted on the horizon. Before the full city guard can make a line of defense, the orcs have over-run the city boundary and farmsteads are already aflame. Surviving city guards drop their spears and turn to try and save the residents, herding them to the marina. Our party is alongside the members of the soon to be members of the Singing Dragon Scales, getting sea sick, trying not to fall overboard, and after an interminably dark night, struggling off the fishing boat onto the pier at Faroth. Up they straggle to the town square and are greeted by the irascible captain of the guard, then they nap at Drafter Crushton’s ranch.
In the morning, they are greeted by Drafter and his rangers, and ranger Bildar picks Sakool, Erin, Taj, Barron Poorrich, Paladin Laferic, dwarf Sabonin, and mainland ranger Gragor to find a neighborhood in the northeastern ruins of ancient Faroth to settle. They don’t mind each other’s company. They chat a bit about retrieving the dragon-born Manja out of the bay when they were on the boat. They all seem to be in agreement that they can be a make-do group, but start to have doubts about Barron Poorrich, who tends to laugh at his own private jokes out loud.
After a mile of hiking, they find a relatively intact neighborhood in the ruins, once clearly populated by Dwarves. Runes are visible on doorways, and between three giant hill-sized boulders, is a dell harboring a stone-walled workshop, an open-sided blacksmiths forge, a small two room dwarven house (probably for the previous blacksmith), and the roofless remains of a museum: statuary and scupture were once whole on the pedestals and bleached remains of tapestries drift and swing on the walls. The forge is in surprisingly good condition: two sides of it were covered in blown sand and the mouths of half a dozen coal barrels quietly gape out of this accidental slope. The anthricite in the wooden barrels has started petrifying the wood. Tools are scattered amongst flaky and rust scabbed piles of once-iron sheets used to make iron. Stone pedestals in the workshop reveal body-shaped indentations used to for pounding iron sheeting into armor.
Bildir coaches the team on conserving wood, shows them how to find the ancient caches of charcoal buried in the sands of the island. The decide on shifts for tending the fire and keeping watch at night. Our group is tired and they decide to split into a watch and a rest shift. Bildir suggests the rangers and Erin the elf, gather for a moment of prayer to Elhona. They surround the carefully constructed circle of stones shrouding their small fire and each feed sticks into it with their prayers:
Elhona, we thank you for your guidance and protection
We have traveled far and lost much
Yet we remain to protect the forest and the life it gives
Please, Elhona, grant us luck in this new chapter of our lives
…and they bow their heads. And tingle! Erin looks at Gragor. Gragor looks at Taj, who looks at Sakool. They are surprisingly refreshed and feel like they have been touch with the grace of Elhona herself. No one knows if they will get to sleep if they feel this good.
Sabanin lays down in the workshop, his cloak under him, a burlap bag wadded up as a pillow, and stares up at the darkening ceiling. As the light fades, his the elven quality of his vision picks out a mist covering the underside of the roof slates. No wonder this building didn’t burn: slate roof, he thinks. But that mist isn’t campfire smoke. No…it’s spider web. He gets up and rustles Sakool, Erin and Gragor.
Sakool watches the web sway as if eight giant fingers walk their way across the web into the darkness of the loft–and takes a nervous step backwards. His mind races. Rangers protect wild life… but these last two days…He’s been the wildlife without a home. This is the only building for miles he can call his own. A giant spider is not going to share it with him. “Fire…” he mutters.
Sabanin, poking his head out the door, he tsk-tsks the Baron into the workshop. “What’s that?” he points. Barron Poorrich walks into the workshop and says, and ducks his hand into a pouch at his side. No, wrong pouch! Well, to heck with that—and throws a rock. The spider darts to the middle of the margin of the loft.
Erin hears him, but doesn’t know what to think. This is strange: why is this ranger so afraid? I should nock my bow…but how will the spider feel when we light it’s home on fire? Angry. “Open the door, and don’t block it!” she says.
Taj doesn’t want to kill a wild animal, but where are they going to live? The broken down forge? The museum without a roof? Maybe if they get to the back of the workshop they won’t attract attention…no chance. I have a staff! He leaps onto a work pedistal, does a leap and whacks the spider with his quarterstaff. A crunch of chitin is heard as the staff crushes one of the spider mandibles.
Barron Poorrich says, “Oh, I should burn this critter with acid–” but picks up a rusty iron plate and throws it at the spider—and whacks it in the face! Laferic races out to grab a burning stick from the fire pit. Sabonin unsheaths his short sword and grips his shield tightly. No dumb arachnid is going to munch on my friends…Gragor nocks an arrow. Sakool readies his bow. Erin fires and hits with a rich cracking sound as the arrow pierces the thorax.
The spider jumps! It springs at the Barron and Poorrich reflexively shoots an acid spell at the spider. His shot strikes low and sprays onto Taj who starts screaming. The spider falls onto the Barron, failing to bite with its broken mandibles. Sakool, Sabanin and Gragor strike, and the spider is pummeled to death in a moment, surrounded by the party.
Things are looking up as Taj and the Barron surprisingly agree on something: spider carapace and spinnerets are valuable spell components and magical armor materials. They might be able to sell these items in town. Maybe they won’t be in dire straights for very long if they continue to be this brave?