Saturday, March 3, 2012

Wednesday 4 July 1280, Morning (Dead Horse)

Gaven points over to the horse and quietly says, "I would like to look at the horse. Duran, can you provide cover fire if something comes out to attack?"

"I will escort you and provide support while you search Gaven," says Varros, keen to take a look himself and try to determine the apparent direction the arrows came from.

Duran nods to Gaven and Varros and says "I'll follow you over and watch your backs should anything arise. Also I make no promises but if one of you could bring several of the arrows I may be able to identify what kind of arrows and who may use them. Perhaps they may be of use to me as well."

"Use caution in your approach," offers Oloc. " I will remain here with Stan and Ollie. The mage scans the hilltop for any sign of movement, ready to immediately warn the others if he spies anyone or anything.

Approaching the horse, Gaven, Varros and Duran note no significant smell and no maggots. The blood in the wounds, however, is thoroughly coagulated. Varros counts four arrows embedded in the beast's chest, two in its belly, and two in its side along the ribs, angled as if they entered from in front of the horse. None of the arrows is deep enough to have been fatal. There are several severe gashes from other weapons in the horse's legs, shoulders and hindquarters that likely immobilized the poor creature without killing it right away – perhaps days ago. Whether he ultimately died this past night from shock, dehydration, or some combination of the two is unclear.

There are no bags, but Gaven's examination of the saddle reveals an ornate "B" tooled into the leather. It is easily recognizable as the same symbol you noted earlier on the sign over the door to Barley's stable.

Of the eight arrows in the horse, six of them are damaged, while two could be reused. Varros withdraws them and hands them to Duran. To Duran's trained eye, they appear to be of inferior workmanship. Duran recognizes their make as humanoid, but cannot determine their origin more precisely.

Oloc notes no movement whatsoever on the hilltop, so he and the hirelings move up to rejoin the group near the horse, keeping extremely alert.

A continued inspection of the horse's immediate vicinity shows that the ground all around is trampled. A dagger lies near the horse, stained with what looks like dried blood, only the greenish-black color is wrong. If it is blood, it is neither human nor equine. In addition to the horse's blood, there is a dried, dark red blood trail, smeared in many spots, leading up the hill from the horse, in the direction of the farmhouse.

The grass where the partially smeared blood trail runs is crushed almost flat as if something heavy had been dragged over it. There are multiple sets of foot prints discernible to either side of the trail of blood and flattened grass. Among the sets of foot prints to the right-hand side you see dried drops of the same thick, black-green fluid that stains the blade of the dagger.

The thin wisp of smoke continues to rise, and the scent of cooking meat continues to waft down the hill.

OOC: Actions?


  1. Varros - Fighter

    Varros looks at his companions grimly, "This situation appears to to be far more serious than we expected friends. Everything here suggests to me that soon we will be facing combat against an adversary unexpected, not human in fact." Sniffing the air Varros whispers to the party, "It is my guess we may be too late to save both the missing townsfolk, however, it seems to me we may be able to surprise their abductors. I have a plan..."

    OOC; Varros will suggest the following course of action. The party should stay low and move to the east following the line of the hill to stay out of site of the area the fire is. Once due East of the fire we should take up position to engage with Varros, Stan and Gaven ready to meet/make an assault while Duran attempts to get as many shots in on the adversaries as possible. Olec may want to ready his spell, depending on the number and apparent strength of the enemies.

    This should allow the party to avoid getting trapped between farmhouse and fire area. As the enemies obviously have missile weapons the party should make every attempt to surprise and gain initiative my suggestion is for Oloc and Duran to focus on those bow wielding enemies perhaps even taking them out before being noticed while the more melee oriented characters protect them and attack the fighter types.

    Any further suggestions or additions?

  2. Gaven - cleric

    "This is a grim situation indeed."

    Gaven picks up the ichor-covered dagger and gives it a sniff and then a lick to try to determine what creature this may have come from. He will stow the dagger in his pack.

    Looking at Ollie, Gaven says, "Lad, can you take the saddle? I would like to return it to Bob Barley as evidence of his horse and ..." Gaven sighs, "possibly his son's demise." Gaven makes the sign of Light over the horse.

    Gaven nods at Varro's plan, "I like your idea, we certainly don't want to get stuck between two sets of enemies."

  3. Duran - Fighter

    Adding the two arrows to his pack Duran listens to Varros' plan. The plan seems solid and Duran nods his consent. He then says "I should like to be positioned to the left of the group during the attack so I can take as many shots as possible while the others charge. This way I won't be shooting over and through you as you move. Then after combat is engaged I can pick off any of their archers who are not engaged in hand to hand combat. I also have my axe should the need arise but I much prefer the feel of bow and arrow in my hands."

    OOC: If the plan goes forward Duran will position himself to the left of the line of those charging and fire on anyone wielding ranged weapons first hopefully getting the drop on one or two before they are aware.

  4. Oloc - Mage

    Oloc listens intently to Varros' plan. "I will ready my charming spell, but should we be engaged in hostilities, it may prove ineffective. Otherwise, I can throw a dagger with some skill," he adds, drawing a blade from the sheath at his side.

    The mage looks over the ground again. "Clearly our young lethario put up a fight and looks to have drawn blood before being wounded himself. I hope the two remain, for the most part, unharmed."

    He then readies himself to play his role in Varros' plan.