When we last left our heroes, they had found the ruins of Származás Keep or so they have assumed. Finally having reached one of the initial goals for which Professor Yetemi had hired them, they discovered that it was occupied. Cailana had set off a trap, narrowly avoiding it, and alarm near the keep’s entrance. As the party hid in the nearby woods, helmeted heads began to peek over the keep’s walls. After something of a waiting game for an hour or so (the party hiding in the woods and occupants holding their position, hobgoblins exited the keep. The party attempted to ambush them, but Cailana had the misfortune of being spotted. That is where we pick up after the break.
This recap is from RJ. Muse was missing, but Claudia was able to join us again. Rachel played Cailana on Muse’s behalf. As usual, my GM comments are in [brackets and italics]. There are potential spoilers for The Vault of Larin Karr below the break.
One of the Hobgoblins yells “Elf!!!” and points up at Cailana.
Cailana loosens her arrow and shoots a hobgoblin in the head and down he goes. Wink starts his spell and yellow lights burst out and two hobgoblins in the rear raise their hands to their eyes from the blinding light.
Just then Raspin charges out and swings his sword at another hobgoblin but just misses. Serena pulls the arrow back to her ear and shoots the other hobgoblin in the front and puts him down.
Faelan drops his sling and pulls his battle axe, rushing the hobgoblin battling Raspin but misses. The hobgoblin swings its sword at Raspin and hits him hard. Raspin is bleeding pretty badly from a chest wound.
Suddenly, a strange, shimmering man enters the fray, attacking the hobgoblin that just hit Raspin. Faelan tries to look at him but can’t make out his features. He is a little unnerved by this, but doesn’t mind the help right now.
Cailana shoots at the hobgoblin that ran Raspin threw. The arrow goes right past Raspin’s head and into the hobgoblin’s eye. Faelan moves up to the last hobgoblin still dazed by Wink’s magic. Swinging his battle axe, he hits it pretty hard in the chest and it drops.
Thinking there is time to rest, Faelan moves up to Raspin to try and heal him but Serena yells “Hobgoblins!!!” as three come up behind her and attack. She defends off the first wave of attacks as a fourth one shoots a bolt at Cailana; it hits, but it doesn’t seem to be serious. One of the hobgoblins pulls his horn to his lips and blows.
[The initial four hobgoblins were, essentially, a feint. They had come in the woods after the party banging their swords on their shields. This was to cover any noise that the flanking hobgoblins might make. It was a successful tactic that ultimately failed as you’ll see below.]
Despite his grave wounds, Raspin moves closer to Serena, but his wounds are too severe to make it far.
One of the hobgoblins grunts out to Serena, “Drop your mace and drop to your knees”. Serena responds calmly, “I don’t think I want to do that.” He swings his sword at her and hits a glancing blow off of her armor. The other two take advantage of an opening with one connecting solidly, blood flows from the wound.
Faelan lays his hands on Raspin and prays to Metsä. Nothing happens. The wound is too serious for just a quick prayer.
[Raspin had suffered three wounds.]
The strange man charges back towards Serena. He swings his sword at one of the hobgoblins but misses. Wink moves into a better position and a burning yellowish light comes from his hands, but the hobgoblins dart out of the way.
Cailana brushes off her minor cut from the crossbow bolt [recovers from Shaken] and shoots at the crossbow wielding hobgoblin. As he ducks out of the way of her arrow, Cailana slides down the tree to go help out Serena.
Faelan closes his eyes with his hands on Raspin and prays to the Wild. Wink shoots his burning light at the two hobgoblins again. This time they can’t get out of the way and go down…melting. Gross!
[Everyone is still finalizing their character’s powers. Wink was doing a radiation type trapping at this point. I think it is changing.]
Cailana shoots the crossbowman, dropping him.
There is one hobgoblin left. He pulls out his horn and blows three times before running off into the woods. He shouts, “You’re never going to get me.” He jumps over a fallen log, taking cover and shouting, “You are never going to shoot me now elf!”
[Yes, the hobgoblin was trying to draw the characters in as he knew that another wave of reinforcements was on the way.
I can’t share what this horn blast or the prior one signaled as the players do not yet know for sure what they meant. They have their suspicions that they put to use below.]
Serena tries to heal herself, but is unsuccessful. She seems to be shocked about what happened, “Utazás, what did I do? I didn’t think you would want me to give them shoes?”
[Rachel rolled a 1 on the spellcasting die. With the no power point option option that we are using, that is backlash which results in a character with Arcane Background (Miracles) not being able to use their powers until they’ve spent four hours in prayer. They’ve offended their deity in some way.]
Cailana moves to get a better shot at the crouching hobgoblin. When he pokes his head up, she shoots him and he goes limp.
Faelan’s magic heals Raspin some and the big warrior looks a little bit better.
Wink looks around and hears move movement from behind him. He lets us know more are coming [from the direction of the keep] and takes cover behind a tree. We gather closer together and get ready for the battle ahead of us. This strange friend moves into the woods. Faelan believes he is a creation of Wink’s, he really hopes so.
Wink sees more Hobgblins with crossbows moving closer. He blasts [burst 😉} and kills two of them before he moves back deeper into the woods. Wink hears more movement coming and tries to hide. His strange bodyguard tries to hide too but fails.
Faelan tries to heal Raspin again and Metsä is very generous and all of his wounds are healed. Faelin hopes Metsä will let him heal Serena as well and she does. The rest of us try to hide, but we don’t seem to do a good job of it.
Four hobgoblins move out from the woods. Two shoot at the bodyguard and he is hit but doesn’t seem to be hurt. One shoots at Faelan and misses. The last one shoots at Serena, but it doesn’t seem to hurt her.
Raspin comes out from behind a tree and advances on one of the hobgoblins. He runs it through with his sword. Cailana shoots at another one and misses. Serena moves up to another hobgoblin, swings her mace and takes him down. Faelan moves to the hobgoblin that Raspin took down, grabs the crossbow and starts to load it.
Wink wiggles his hands but nothing happens. His bodyguard comes up to another and and takes it out. Wink tries again and nothing happens.
The last hobgoblin moves back away and starts to blow his horn. Cailana tries to shoot him by misses and he starts to run into the woods, blowing longs blasts on his horn. (That is 13 hobgoblins we put down in the woods, way to go team Willow!!!)
We gather together and prepare for another attack. We don’t hear anything. We are quiet and are waiting for the next attack, but it never comes. Cailana hears movement, but it seems to be moving away. After about ten minutes, we decide that they are not coming for us.
We check the bodies. Some of us grab some crossbows and bolts. Wink goes over to Raspin, asking him to cut some ears off of the hobgoblins thinking that there might be a bounty on them.
After much discussion we decide that we need to stay and take care of this problem. There is some concern that the captain will be mad that we ‘stirred up’ this problem and didn’t do anything about it. Also, there was some discussion about how the captain did not know that there was a hobgoblin army practically in his back yard.
Faelan turns into a hawk to scout again. He flies over the ruins and sees eight guards on the walls of the ruins. They are spread out over the differnt intact walls and on the towers. They appear to be in a defensive position. He also sees a orc and a hobgoblin walk into a building together. He comes back and lets the rest know what he saw.
We come up with a plan with Faelan, Wink, and his bodyguard providing a distraction on the front side while Cailana, Serena, and Raspin to try and get in on the back side.
As Cailana, Serena, and Raspin move to the back through the woods they come across a trail that seems to be recently used, but someone has been trying to hide it. It leads back to the ruins and away. They have to get to the back but are curious about it.
[The trail was pretty thin and covered by the forest canopy which is way Faelan had not spotted it on his prior fly-overs.
The group agreed that it shouldn’t take more than thirty minutes for all to get in position. At that point, the “distraction” team would blow the captured hobgoblin horn.]
Once everyone is in position at the back of the keep, Raspin notices that collapsed secions of wall have been reinforced and will be harder to climb than Faelin had believed. He also notices some spots of browned grasses near the wall, likely covering a pit. He tells Serana and Cailana about the problems and that the plan is not good anymore.
Then the horn blows as Faelan and Wink start their distraction. [I believe the horn was blown to impersonate the hobgoblin’s last blowing of the horn.] Wink sends his bodyguard towards the wall. One of the hobgoblins on guard shouts something in goblin. Two of them start shooting the bodyguard. He gets hit and disappears, but then Wink makes him appear again. The conjured warrior tries to climb the ruined portions of the wall, but he is having a hard time. He gets shot again. Wink summons another. The hobgoblins don’t appear to be leaving their posts and don’t seem to be concerned about one person attacking their wall. After a bit, we decide to head to the pre-arranged rendezvous point.
[No…they didn’t seem to be “fooled” by one person attacking the wall. In fact, the first thing they probably did was spread word to keep a better watch on other sections of the wall as what else could this be other than a distraction!]
We all get back together, talk how the plan failed, and decide to check out the path.
Cailana leads us back to the path and we follow it away from the ruins and he leads around to the path we came on. We go back and when we think we are close to the ruins, Faelin turns into a squirrel and heads the rest of the way to the ruins.
When he gets close he sees the path leads straight to one of the towers and an iron door. Faelan heads back and lets the rest of the party know what he saw.
[The tower looked to have been repaired and the door had a large padlock on it. The woods nearly came right up to the tower and door, providing a good amount of cover. Faelan know from a prior fly-over that one hobgoblin was crouched down atop this tower.]
We sneak closer and come up with a [new] plan, Wink will use his magic to loosen the stone where the door’s hinges are mounted and Raspin will charge at the weakened door to knock it down. The rest of us will follow behind. We set up and everything seems to be going well. Raspin runs, hits the door, and knocks it down with a loud crash. As his momentum carries him inside, he tries to pull up before entering a large pool in the middle of the tower!
[And that is where we ended the session…with Claudia rolling Raspin’s Agility check to pull up short of the pool. I was evil and immediately covered the roll with my hands so the players were left guessing. 😀
Why did the hobgoblins only send out small squads at a time? Why have they taken such a defensive posture? Why hasn’t this hobgoblin army attacked Presov yet? How is it that the authorities in Presov don’t know about this “army in their backyard?” Who was the orc that was spotted? Where does the secret trail lead?