Roleplaying > Freeform Roleplaying

The Hunt For the Enchantress

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  The horror of the night had never stopped, not once in 17 years. Bram felt the rush of fear gnawing at the back of his skull, annoyed at it's intrusion, but it could not be helped. His sword drawn, he made his way through the forest, illuminated only by the mirrored rays of the moon. All around him the shadows of the woods twisted upon themselves, taking the shapes of darkened creatures bent by evil intent. He knew that these things were not real, as the elders had already warned him of the magical wards. What better barrier from intruders then that of their own instinctual fears? He gripped the talisman that hung around his neck, rubbing it between his fingers, and prayed to the Gods for safe passage through the journey ahead. He thought back to the days of his childhood hearing tall tales of the cult within these woods. How they had portrayed themselves as heroes in our time of crisis. How they offered their hollow promises of protection in exchange for our subservience. Our 'noble' fathers... fools and cowards, the lot of them! Too short sighted to see the crutch upon which they leaned, built by their own hands stained with blood. The price of protection came at the cost of a life. Every few months a new one was taken, without a sound, without a struggle, not even a whimper let out in protest. And we were bred by our shadowed partners to ignore it, as if we were some pack of dogs adhering to the whip of our masters. What sort of men would allow such a self afflicted wound to fester amidst their own families? No more! The cycle would be broken tonight by dawn. It had to, or Ada would not live to see another day.

  A sudden howl let out in front of him, and Bram stopped cold. The sounds of rapid movement spread out around him. Blanketed by the effect of the wards all he could see were shadows broken up by the light of the moon. Taking hold of his bastard sword in both hands he prepared himself for whatever was to come.

OOC: Yeah, I'm pretty new to this forum type thing, so I was kind of hoping for a little assistance where story is concerned. I was sort of hoping we could all round robin the plotline as long as you think you could add to the game. Reading some of the material on this site however, I dont doubt you could. :)

The thunderstorm in Anoikis’s mind never truly subsided.  The flashes of lightening would illuminate scenes from his childhood, from his wars, from marriages or the children of those marriages.  No sooner would his mind’s eye take focus on something then the thunder of regret and pain would chase them away.  Tonight he tried to shelter his thoughts in a tent of wine and restless activity.  It had work for awhile the wine and dice had given his thoughts a focus clarity for a while, the rise and fall of his little fortunes around the game table pushing away the attendees of his pity party.  But this had been small community, and the local gamblers had sought sleep before he had spent effort or money to find sleep. Drunk and wanting, Anoikis was attempting to chase of his remembered fears with the more tangible fears of an unfamiliar dark forest and entice sleep with another cask of wine.  Totting all his belongs, Anoikis had long ago stopped trusting inn keepers and liveries, stumbled through the wood beneath a bright moon.  He hummed “A spark for the children”, as he remembered it from his second wedding and watched carefully the dark unfamiliar figures moving quickly through the woods around him. 

He felt relieved a little danger could clear his mind, if only he wasn’t drunk, but who or what where these things. “ I didn’t win that much as dice,” he whispered to himself.  Still holding the ceramic flask of wine in his left hand, he stretche his right arm around to his pack and started to unlace a throwing ax.

A crash in the brush next to him sent him spinning.  Had something hit him? He raised the ax as he spun but the ballast of his pack and a well placed root sent him listing backwards. He landed on the flask, and it made vaguely amusing pop as it shared.  Small pieces of pottery stuck into his leg as he let out a loud howl, half pain-half laughter.  Sitting up, still ready for a fight despite the undignified and stinging fall, the seasoned solider turned his salt pepper beard and wide bemused eyes to his left. 
There was a youth he had not seen before! No more than 20 by Anoikis’s estimation, holding a broad sword  that shamed the little ax he held.  The boy had a look of fear and determination on his face that Anoikis had seen in hundreds of boys his age. 
In a heavy accent “You were not with me dice game lad, I hope you are not in this state over a father’s coins.”   

OCC: "I think Bram needs someone to talk to, so that he can explain fully whats going on. 

Bram lowered his sword at the sight of this strange man before him. "I have no debt to you sir. And I do not intend to rob you on behalf of anyone, least of all my father." He sheathed his blade as he made his way towards him. "I am Bram Durand. My village, Fallcrest, had been put under a spell by a Witch and her followers. I could tell you the tale if you were interested in aiding me, Sir...?"

[OOC] I had a few ideas since first posted this thread, so what say next will be a bit different from my original post above.

A vision popped into Anoikis's head, he felt his ax leaving his hand landing squarely between Bram's eye. He shook of the vision and glanced around the woods again.

"Do not come a step closer lad" he said in a loud whisper. "We are no alone here, I think." A crash again from Bram's left and then from Bram's right a dark man-like figure lept forward out from the shadows at the two men.   Anoikis's ax flew at the figure, splitting its head like a cloud of smoke.  The ax didn't slow, but cracked into a tree trunk some two meters aways.  There was pained gasp, a foreign word and the man like figure vanished like whisp of steam in strong wind.  The older man yanked a dirk from his boot, and with one motion cut the ropes to his own pack, then using that same momentum he rolled to his feet.  Then stumbled against a tree.  He could hear what ever made that crash to Bram's left running hurriedly through the forest.  He raised a hand to stay Bram's action, and he smiled.

"Fey forms,  they won't hurt yea, but one touch from em and you will be covered in all kind of ugly skin crawling emotions. Whatever witch or warlock summoned that dank illusion" he gestured at the spot where the shadow had been.  "well... they will be having stiff head ache in the morn." He stroked his dagger gently across his beard in a mock shaving motion and looked around pleased. "Well Bram Dur...brand.  I am guessing Fallcrest is where I diced and the witches den is in these woods?"

  "You have the right of it" said Bram, " A witch lives here in these woods. She came to my village long ago, during a time when our crops failed and our water supply dried up. She offered to provide us these things, but at a cost." Bram leaned against a nearby tree, looking down at his feet.

  "It brings me no honor to say it, but the elders of our village agreed to her terms. She demanded human offerings, for what exactly I still dont know. The victims were to be of her choosing, and would be taken during the night. She placed a spell upon the village that made us forget those who traveled outside the limits of town. In this way, the disappearances went unnoticed, as we would forget their very existence the moment they reached the forest. I was like them, until I had this" He said, lifting his talisman from off his chest.

  "An old traveller gave it to me one day. He said he pitied our situation, and that I should at least have a chance. I didnt have the faintest idea what he was talking about at the time, but looking back I suspect it wasn't the first visit he'd had to our village. The next day he was gone, and I was the only one who remembered him. A few days later, and I start to notice that others are going missing too, but no one else believes me. They thought I was going mad, but I wasn't! Soon after that I had found a few others in the village with talismans the same as mine. I learned that these were the witch's followers, planted in town to spy on us. They then knew what I had found out, and thats when they took my niece Ada." Bram slammed his fist against the trunk of a nearby tree, glaring at the back of his own fist.

 "My brother had forgotten her. My family as well. I need to get her back! I have to make them remember! I have to kill that witch! And I... may need your help."


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