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Thread: To cross the Greypeaks

  1. #16
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    Taking his queue from everyone else, Ferous breaths deeply, and while he does smell the trees, and the crisp air, he mostly smells the earth still, and the iron that it contains.

    Looking down he kicks a rock, bends and picks it up. He misses the tunnels already.

    He drops the rock and looks at his surroundings.

    He thinks to himself "We cannot afford to drop our guard once, not once".

    Ferous turns and stares at the bedding that he has unpacked, is there a tent in here?

    He turns back to the others, "Did we bring tents?"


    With that Ferous inventories his supplies again.
    Last edited by Fly by Knight; 10-21-2009 at 03:05 PM.

  2. #17
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    "Aye," Asbjorn says to Ferrous' question. "We have two packed on da mules, not much mor'n a few stitched sheets cover'd in wax though." as he nods toward the last free pack mule.

    Everyone's meal is eaten quickly, likely more to allow everyone a break from the mules then for sustenance. Some eat the hard bread, while others seem to enjoy the jerky. The wind howls through the peaks and buffets everyone, chilling many whom have never departed the stead before.

    After what seems a few minutes Asbjorn stands again, "Bout time we gets ta movin agin." He begins helping everyone onto their respective mules, adding extra padding anywhere his companions have begun growing sore.

    "I thank you for the assistance Asbjorn, you seem to certainly be gifted when it comes to this cavernless realm," says Dolastyr quietly as he assists her. He grins widely, winking at her "Ain't nuttin dearie, never thunk I'd be usin all dese skills fer anytin like dis though"

    "We should be fairly isolated until we cross into the Greyvale," says Barur as he studies a crudely drawn map he had retrieved from his bag. "From what I gather humans rarely venture farther then that into the peaks. I have heard rumors of why, but I think its simple superstition," as if he was not completely certain.

    "I seen a few o' em, but we wez told we best keep clear o' em. Seems they all don't act right," replies Asbjorn. He had never completely understood why the other skinners avoided them until he had approached a lone one years ago. He had gotten close when he had smelled that reek and he could see that whatever blight it had he had no desire of getting.

    Asbjorn finally mounts up and starts toward the valley of the mount that the dwarves call home. The wind continues to howl unabatedly, but by mid afternoon they finally reach the small conifers of the valley. The verdent green trees were fragrant and smelled clean. As they descended into the copse it thickened and soon were moving much slower. Needles crunched under their mounts feet and soft whispers of birds sung from above. At each call the companions were startled by the sounds, being only nominally aware of birds at all.
    Last edited by mnemenoi; 10-22-2009 at 07:13 AM.

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    The forest thickened just before it reached the rising peak. A small fire crackles in a pit surrounded by small stones, the smoke rising up in between the interlocking branches. The fire warmed the small area, and cast an orangey glow that gave everything a distinct hue. It reflects in Adiir’s one good eye, giving him an almost demonic look.

    The sounds of crunching float through the trees, and Adiir tightens his grip on the massive axe. A smile grosses his tattooed face as he plods out into the open, recognizing the sounds of the ponies. The sounds of the forest are lost on the Slayer, who, in truth, felt more at home outside now than underground. Being away from everything for so long tended to change a Dwarf though, and Adiir wasn’t without his quirks.

    “Asbjorn ye durned fool!” The gravelly voice bursts from Adiir with a smile. The Slayer, while not tall for a Dwarf, is massive. He looks at least as wide as he is tall, and huge slabs of muscle cover his exposed upper body. Most of his skin is inked with intricate swirls and odd patterns, and his one good eye glistens with not a little bit of madness. His other eye is covered by a crude leather patch, and a scar is visible peeking out from either side of it. Adiir’s beard is long and red, braded with gold ringlets. His nose is pierced, as is his ear, and a large gold chain loops between the two. Perhaps the oddest thing though is his hair. His head is shaved on either side, but the middle is long, and swooped up in a large Mohawk, held with grease and fat.

    The Slayer clutches his massive Axe in one meaty paw, and reaches up the other to clasp Asbjorn’s arm, before turning to look at the rest of the party. He blinks for a moment, surprised, then looks up at Asbjorn. “I’m the be leading all o’ you?”

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    Ferous preps his bedding when the booming voice of Adiir shatters the silence.

    Immediately grabbing his shield, Ferous draws Drek Krumh and the ache cycles through his right shoulder and elbow.

    Looking up over the edge of his shield, he is greeted with a massive dwarf that looks as alien to him as if an elf had walked into the camp.

    "Clangeddin's whiskers", he says under his breath, "that dwarf is the size of my mount."

    Ferous lowers his shield and slightly relaxes his grip on the black axe. He blatantly stares at Adiir, as he doesnt know how to take him in. A slight smile is on his lips as he thinks "If this Dwarf is half as fearsom as he looks, we will be in good hands."

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    Ertryd is relaxing before the fire when she is startled out of her thoughts by the booming voice. She recognizes the speech as a greeting to one of their own, however, and smoothes her rumpled nerves. She is taken aback at the appearance of the feral-looking dwarf, as she has never seen one so wild. She decides that she will behave diplomatically, however, as the party could use the help of this new dwarf.

  6. #21
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    Asbjorn grins at Adiir's voice, "Aye, ain't a one o' us as been more'n three days outta da stead," in responce to the wild dwarf's question. At the sight of the fire he slows the mules, "So I'll be bettin ya din't bring no mule wit ya? Dat er ya's hidin it about I suppose?" as he surveys the camp for any sign of a pack animal. He knew he had an extra, but hated handing off a mule already loaded with gear.

    "I'm makin it a few hours till sundown still. How's bout we gets ta movin and talks when we gets ta camp?" as he knows that time is only working against them in a situation like this. Two weeks was quite some time and he had no desire to be dragging it out across the peaks any more then he had to.

    "Da rear mule ain't got nuttin but gear, your welcome to it..." as he nodded to his fellow. They could express much without speaking and the sheer size of the party would take some time to cover all the introductions.

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    A deep rumble echoed through the vale, like Moradin hammering the mountains themselves. Adiir could feel an ache in his bones and joints that suggested a nasty storm was on the way shortly, likely a few hours off. He doubted any of the others were familiar enough with weather to have any inkling of what lay in store.

    "Giants?" asked Dolastyr with a questioning face. She had heard of them before, but in the depths of the stead they were nothing more then tales.

    "I don't know, but...." replied Barur as if he wished he did know what the source of the deafening rumble was from. He smiled at the strange and violent looking dwarf, "My names Barur, I take it your Adiir? So you are from Adbar? That's very interesting, I'd love to hear your stories..." as he prattled on. Barur always seemed to have some strange desire to speak when he felt uncomfortable. His soft features and youth shone with his naivety and could easily be read upon his face.

    "Whacha be tinkin me brudder?" yells Asbjorn from the head of the line toward Adiir.

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    "Giants!"

    "Giants?"

    "Did you just say giants mum? Can they make the world quake like that, truly?"

    Ferous shifts in his uncomfortable saddle looking about and begins to run scenarios of how to defeat a giant. He shivers at the idea of it, and from the fresh cold wind now hitting him, whipping his beard up in his face.

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    Dolastyr looks at Ferous with wild eyes, "I have heard they are huge and eat us in one bite. The stories tell that we fought them in the old days, but I can't understand how..." as she seems to add to the growing tension.

    "I've heard they throw boulders like rocks..." adds Barur quietly. "I'm sure some old tales tell of them Lady Ertryd, do they say how to fight them?" as if begging for some secret to their demise buried in yore.

    Asbjorn hears their talk and nods thinking that he would welcome a challenge like that. Some huge monstrosity that would bellow and huff, he doubted that anything of the like was real though. Surely he would have seen something like that in his years on the mount. Mostly what he had seen was the cats of the peaks and the one time he had seen a human. He shivered in his leathers at that last thought. It still woke him at night and was something he could not dwell upon, lest he scare himself. The skinners avoided them at all cost and only fought them if they must, but they all knew enough to smell them at a good distance.

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    The familiar ache rolls through Adiir’s bones as the rumble passes overhead. The mule under him plods on without hesitation. After only a short while riding, Adiir is already restless. He grumbles low to himself about weakness and letting others do work, but makes no real complaints. The large booming sounds again, and the familiar sounds and feelings of a storm wash over him.

    “Giants?” One of the group pipes up, and Adiir can’t help but let out a bark of laughter. The Dwarf nearest to him introduces himself as Barur, and goes on talking. Adiir holds up a great hand, demanding silence from the younger Dwarf. “They talk more than the manlings that travel through here to hunt.” He exclaims, raising his hands and glairing about. “If they were giants they would surely be able to find us!”

    Adiir’s one eye glares about for a long moment, then he shrugs. “I’d say let them. That would be a glorious fight indeed. Worthy opponent. “ He smiles to himself, his hand rubbing the axe that is laying across his lap. Suddenly he becomes dour and frowns. “No, it isn’t giants. It’s just a storm. The sky will crash an boom an water will fall. It should be clear by tamorrow. Asbjorn, “ He calls up to the head, looking for the other Dwarf, “This is likely to be a bad storm. I can feel it in me bones. Are we to be riding through it?” He asks, casting his gaze about doubtfully. “If we make camp….then I can tell you some stories.” He says, a sinister looking grin crossing his features.

  11. #26
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    "I ain't one fer movin trough bad weader," replies Asbjorn. "Let's find a spot fer a camp and wait it out, I been achin fer more o yer tales old freind," says Asbjorn to Adiir. "Glad ta be havin ya along longbeard," as a sign of respect to his comrade. He had little time above the peaks during bad weather and Adiir's knowledge of the upper realms would prove invaluable to the party.

    Asbjorn rode a bit further and finally decided upon a spot with a rough cave as the best area for making camp. He stopped the mules and began doing his best at unpacking everything he thought might be useful.

    Dolastyr seemed to find the small cave a welcome respite and smiled when it came into view. "This will do perfectly," as she gathered some blankets.

    Barur nearly feel off his mule with excitement, "You think anything lives in it?" in a wondered voice.

    "A family of giants fer sure," replied a grinning Thoriken. His axe was in his hand with an easy grace as he started investigating the deeper recesses.

    "Wit a storm, dere ain't no reason we can't do wit a fire," states Asbjorn as he looks for agreement amongst his fellows.

  12. #27
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    Ferous too searches through the deeper reaches of the cave to ensure safety. He hears call for a vote for fire.

    "Aye, good idea"

    Taking a deep breath Ferous can smell the earth, and it has changed. Heavy with clay, the earth has a bit of a reddish tone to it, though the rocks that make this cave are solid enough. Ferous pats the walls with his hand.

    Ferous turns back and upacks his mule, after bringing it in to the cave with the rest of the beasts. He purposely places his sleeping furs and blankets near Dolastyr without being too close.

  13. #28
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    The cavern extends some sixty feet before it finally closes on itself. Beyond some small insects that scurry from under stones little life seems to reside within.

    "I'm thinking we're safe at least fer the night, least from the back o' dis cave that is," smiles Thoriken.

    "Barur, why donna ya be collectin me sum wood fer a fyre? Don't be wanderin to far dough.." as Asbjorn finishes tying the mules up.

    "I'll start making a pit," states Dolastyr as it seems she finally has found something to occupy her time. She sets to gathering stones for a ring.

    "Ferrous," she cries in alarm as she lifts a large stone. At your glance you can see the glint of metal under the newly uncovered stone.

  14. #29
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    Ertryd follows the group quietly into the cave. She still feels out of place and entirely unfamiliar to the concept of travelling outside of the stead, and as such, is lacking in confidence. She decides that something more familiar would make her more comfortable, so she begins to tell a tale once the campfire is lit.

    "Ages ago, there was a young dwarven warrior by the name of Beran. He was eternally faithful to his clanhold. He trained to be a soldier for all his life, until the day came that he was called into battle. The clanhold was under attack by a ruthless army of drow, and every last able-bodied dwarf was called to fight.

    “At first, it seemed that there was no hope for the clanhold. The dwarven soldiers were outnumbered 3 to 1 by the drow. The cowardly foe sent in assassins to kill the commanders of the dwarven militia by poisoning them in their sleep. The battle raged on, but the dwarves were left without military leaders.

    “The day came when the two armies clashed head on in open conflict. The dwarves fought bravely, but they were sorely outnumbered and there was no one with rank to command them. The tide of battle was in the favor of the cowardly drow. Then Beran stepped forward. He called out formations and thought out strategies to turn the tide of battle in the dwarves’ favor. More than anything, he was an inspiring presence on the battlefield. His hope was infectious, bringing hope to his brethren. Their spirits high, the dwarves fought well and bravely. They still incurred heavy losses, but the drow losses were greater. Finally, the cowardly drow grew fearful of their losses, and they retreated.

    “The dwarves rejoiced, and Beran was a hero. One dwarf had stepped forward with hope in his heart, despite of the dire circumstances, and he had turned the tide of the battle in their favor.” Ertryd is feeling more relaxed as she falls into the familiar role of storyteller. This audience is an unusual one for her, as she is used to telling tales for the court, but she doesn’t mind that these are fellow travelers rather than thanes.

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    As Ertryd finishes her story and a short silence ensues, Ferous stands. He was greatly moved by her story as it reminded him of the story of his axe. Breaking the silence Ferous booms out,

    "Huzzaaah!" And thumps his shield with his axe. "M'Lady..."

    Just then he hears Dolastyr and turns to see her expression and object of surprise. Ferous hurries over to her.

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