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Author Topic: Tales of Misadventure [Isle of Woe]  (Read 36071 times)

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Offline Murometz

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Tales of Misadventure [Isle of Woe]
« on: September 28, 2013, 01:02:08 PM »
Adrift upon a fickle sea :pirateship:

When Lumori, Thorgir, and Somnak the half-orc boarded the Endeavor, they were unaware of each other. Over the first few long days at sea however, introductions were inevitable. Not that they took to each other immediately…

The barbarian was taciturn and hot-tempered, the half-orc who styled himself a bard, equally unpleasant, and the slim thief, unreadable and guarded.

The Endeavor was on its way to the city of Baetoom across the narrow Green Sea, to sell off its cargo. The three adventurers were simply seeking new lands. Each had their own reasons for seeking new shores. Each of them in turn, had heard tavern tales of the wild lands beyond Baetoom’s walls, where adventuring bands could still delve into half-buried tombs, hunt dragons, explore the unknown, and make names for themselves.

Lumori, Thorgir, and Somnak had paid a pretty coin to buy passage on board, as the captain was at first reluctant to have strangers in tow. But gold being gold, he eventually agreed.

One week into the sea passage, disaster struck the Endeavor.

Who could have predicted a Mermen attack? Perhaps Captain Banhope’s cargo was the reason? After all, he was transporting forty crates of a mysterious gray-black dwarven powder, pre-purchased by the Cyx of Baetoom. Not that the half-orc, thief, and barbarian had any way of knowing this…

And so the attack began below, when the sea-folk ruptured the hull, and swarmed the vessel. Banhope and his crew had no chance, despite putting up a valiant effort. The three passengers got in on the fray as well, Thorgir even brained a merman or two, and the half-orc managed to frighten another away with his feverish drumming. Lumori threw knives and dodged others, while scampering about, and somehow managed to survive the initial onslaught as well. Others, like Captain Banhope and his first mate were not as lucky.

But the mermen were fortunately not hell bent on wholesale slaughter, but rather the sinking of the Endeavor and its precious crates of mysterious powder.

Long tale short, many crewmen perished, while others escaped on life rafts, nearly all abandoning the sinking ship. Lumori, Thorgir, and the half-orc were among them. Unfortunately in lieu of a life boat, the three only managed a large, splintered piece of the floating hull.

Bobbing to and fro in the jade-like waves, the three companions by serendipity, eventually watched the sun set and rise again on their stomachs, hanging on precariously to their makeshift vessel. Who could guess where the fickle currents were taking them? By the third morning helplessly adrift upon the Green Sea, they were growing desperate…and prickly.

Suddenly, the three could make out a hazy shoreline a mere few miles ahead.

Salvation!

(ooc: Yes, you have all managed to hang on to all of your personal possessions and equipment)



(Rogues Gallery of Unimportance
Orsteld Banhope: Captain
Nishke Bream: First Mate
Alreeve: Boatswain
“Urchin”: Cook
Wetalott: Merman attack leader)



« Last Edit: November 28, 2013, 11:21:51 PM by Murometz »
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Re: Tales of Misadventure
« Reply #1 on: September 28, 2013, 10:50:40 PM »
Somnak growled softly; he'd been fluctuating between an odd sort of patient melancholy and barely contained fury at the situation that the trio were in. The hide drum that hung from a long sash on his shoulder was buoyant and bobbing gently alongside him, but the rest of the gear which he held either strapped to him or in his backpack were beginning to weigh him down; especially after so long at sea.

"What gods above mock us?!" He screamed gutterally, "d**n Orsteld and his cursed ship!" Somnak had paid too much gold for his journey across the sea - A price he would not have normally paid, except he was desperate to get as far from his home-land as he could. His tribe had been laid to waste, and too many people remembered him as the last of them - it was not a memory he wanted to live with. It was time to forge a new Somnak - one which would make him proud to wear the name!
His screaming offered an outlet to his rage and he sunk back into silence once more, until...

"Is... Is that land I see?" Somnak Pushed his head higher, roughly using Thorgir's shoulder as a hand-hold to get a better vantage, "Yes... It is! Kick! Kick you fools! Lumori, d**nit - is that the best you can do?!"

Somnak bobbed his head back down and gripped onto the edge of the wood so tightly his nails dug into the sodden material. With intense determination, the half-orc kicked and pushed in the direction of land. Oh, to be dry! To be fed...! To sleep without miscellaneous fish nibbling at your toes...! "Aah, Hahaha!" These pleasant thoughts caused a feverish laugh to gurgle out of the man's sharp-toothed mouth. Survival lay just a couple of miles away!
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Re: Tales of Misadventure
« Reply #2 on: September 28, 2013, 11:08:23 PM »
"Go breathe saltwater, halfbreed. I'm meant for city streets, not ocean waves." Despite a lack of much success, Lumori was giving it his best effort. Not being able to swim makes one want to get to dry land as soon as possible. "...kicking as fast as I can..."

He looked forward, trying to gauge the distance to the sweet salvation of land. Two, maybe three miles? It was hard to tell since he didn't usually ply the seaways, but he put his head down and redoubled his efforts to push the driftwood closer to shore. They'd get there eventually; what was an extra hour or two when you're already soaked?
« Last Edit: September 29, 2013, 08:14:22 AM by Chaosmark »
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Offline Murometz

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Re: Tales of Misadventure
« Reply #3 on: September 28, 2013, 11:42:49 PM »
On Stranger Shores

According to his delicately-etched map, this was one of the myriad islands of the aptly named Shattered Archipelago. Thousands of islands big and small formed a labyrinth for sailors, traversing the Green Sea between the Old Lands and the shores of Mighty Baetoom.

This particular island was apparently ninety miles long north to south and approximately twelve miles east to west. Aside from a beach-ring of gray pebbly sand and jetsam, the entire island was thick with weird jungle, trees, vines, and plants unlike any he had ever seen before in person or in tomes.

Here he was sent by his order, having achieved the Third Cycle of his clerical studies the past year. And now his mission began in earnest, for he was tasked with the saving of lives and souls, and had little time to waste. Khaum’s light shine forth!

It had taken him weeks to sail to this island, weeks of retching overboard and threatening thieving sailors with his mace. Now at last he had reached the jungle-strewn land where he would shine Khaum's light. He was rowed ashore aboard a heaving boat, as the main ship idled well offshore.

Rasmus the Willow had paid well for his passage. Now he was alone, as he looked out along the beach. In three months to the day, another ship would come to pick him up. In the meantime, he had to find the Tribe of the Watching Egg, and cure them of their pagan beliefs. Rumors and hearsay had reached Khaum's Seneschals, whispers of a new cult forming somewhere in the Shattered Archipelago. Long tale short, he was chosen.
« Last Edit: October 17, 2013, 01:33:54 PM by Murometz »
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Re: Tales of Misadventure
« Reply #4 on: September 29, 2013, 12:12:21 AM »
Rasmus breathed deep of the fresh sea air and felt the holy light of Khaum warm him from above. He knelt in the pebbly sand of the beach and prayed to Khaum, the Bringer of Light, to bless his journey. He held the great ram-headed mace of his order before him, the sun sparkling from the highly polished surface.

Posing so the light could shine just so on his strong chin, Rasmus cleared his throat to speak.

"I vow, great Khaum, to bring your light to these poor, deluded souls. They shall come to your understanding and love or they shall have their heads bashed in by the power of the... What the hell?"

Peering into the distant ocean, Rasmus was sure he spotted movement. Was someone out there swimming?
« Last Edit: September 29, 2013, 12:24:42 AM by MysticMoon »
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Offline Murometz

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Re: Tales of Misadventure
« Reply #5 on: September 29, 2013, 10:00:38 AM »
After a seeming eternity, Lumori, Thorgir, and Somnak at last reached the beach, and crawled forth from the surf, water-logged and exhausted.
Though it was windy along the shore, the air was still somehow hot and stifling.

The pebbly beach was littered with smashed ship wood and graying, dried-out sea grasses.  A hundred feet from the water, a seemingly impenetrable jungle reared, casting shadows along the shore. Even the sun’s rays had trouble piercing the wall of foliage ahead.

Crabs skittered about the beach, but more urgently, a lone figure was standing there, eye-ing their approach, robes flailing in the wind, a ram-headed mace in hand. The man had the look of irritating righteousness on his chiseled face, his ample chin thrust forward in determination.
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Re: Tales of Misadventure
« Reply #6 on: September 29, 2013, 10:36:56 AM »
Rasmus approached the three warily, mace lowered but at hand, glad he had his mail on beneath his priestly robes. Two of them were obviously savages. Had Khaum brought them to him to be saved? Or because they were wicked souls in need of head bashing?

"Hold! You are either very lucky or very unfortunate. Khaum has brought me into your path, either to stop you from joining the Watching Egg or to give you assistance. What is your purpose here?"
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Offline valadaar

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Re: Tales of Misadventure
« Reply #7 on: September 29, 2013, 06:30:00 PM »
"To not @!#$ing.. drown?" said Thorgir  pausing as he realized he was dealing with a holyman of some sort.

"Our ship attacked by Fu.. fish men. Sunk it they did.  Who's Khaum?"

Half watching the ram-priest, Thorgir began to examine his weapons, seeing what damage the sea had wrought.
   
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Offline Shadoweagle

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Re: Tales of Misadventure
« Reply #8 on: September 29, 2013, 06:38:47 PM »
Somnak slogged onto the beach, taking care to properly secure his drum and backpack before pulling his shortbow from his back and running a finger along the string - it appeared fine: thank the gods he waxed it well! The half-orc raised his hands in the air and whooped and hollered at their fortune - he was in such a good mood he even forgot to give Lumori a sound beating for his earlier comment!
"By Rothnak let's find some wood and light a fire! I've forgotten the feel of 'dry' and Thorgir; you look like a goat I once drowned! Lumori? I'm sure we can find a nice branch to hang you on to dry!"

Suddenly a voice was heard and without hesitation Somnak had his bow at the ready, an arrow drawn back and pointed at the newcomer. In spite of his friendly words, the weapon remained trained directly at him. "Khaum?" Somnak glanced questioningly to his two companions, "What is this Khaum?"
Thorgir had asked the same question, and to him, Somnak just shrugged.

The half-orc had no intention of answering the cleric's question, but a small growl of pleasure escaped his lips, "You know, I -am- hungry after that trip; it's not often that dinner walks up to you and introduces itself..."

Somnak had tasted man-flesh before, growing up in his tribe. He wasn't particularly fond of it, but these were special circumstances.

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Re: Tales of Misadventure
« Reply #9 on: September 29, 2013, 08:21:34 PM »
Rasmus looked from one to the other. The half-orc seemed to be spouting some sort of gibberish, though the arrow seemed clear enough. One thing came through clearly: neither had heard of Khaum!

"Am I to understand that neither of you have heard of Khaum, Lord of Light? The great God of the stubbornly righteous? He whose ram's-head I have here, my great basher of the skulls of the unrighteous?

"It must be Khaum's will that you appear to me at this time! Come, put down your bow, and I shall share provisions with you and tell you of the great goodness that is Khaum. And then you can join me on my holy crusade to root out the wicked cult that has been seen in this area."
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Re: Tales of Misadventure
« Reply #10 on: September 29, 2013, 10:17:22 PM »
Lumori stepped up to the others, brushing sand off of his pants where possible. "I don't know that we'll be of any help on your 'great crusade', but we'll certainly break bread with you. Assuming you have bread. I doubt any of ours survived that disaster."  He began checking his pack and belt pouches, taking inventory of what had survived the storm. He also needed to re-string his bow; strapping it to his pack was probably one of his smarter moves. If he hadn't, likely it would've been lost in the fighting or the drifting afterward.
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Re: Tales of Misadventure
« Reply #11 on: September 30, 2013, 04:49:39 AM »
There were a two reasons that Somnak lowered his bow. First, the man offered a share of his own food - that would be easier and likely tastier than Rasmus was. Secondly, the other two were more casual about the man that stood before them. With a grunt, he slung his weapon onto his back and stepped forth.

"How do we know he is not a spirit of this isle? Look how he dresses; no man would dress in such a way! And this Khaum we've not heard of? Sounds like trickery to me!" Somnak paused, then sighed, "Okay, let us say you are not a spirit. What is your name? Where are we? We've been drifting for days! We were set to sail to the great Baetoom - do you know of this city?"
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Offline Murometz

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Re: Tales of Misadventure
« Reply #12 on: September 30, 2013, 01:05:50 PM »
As the four ate, dusk settled in all around them. The earlier wind had died down to a gentle evening breeze, and the now calm waves gently lapped the pebbly beach. The heat had subsided as well.

It was not yet dark however, and as Rasmus answered Somnak's questions and explained himself, describing what little he knew of this nameless island and his mission, Lumori watched as dozens of tiny crabs suddenly began racing toward the sea. The bird chirps which had serenaded them from the jungle, as they crawled onto the beach earlier, had also suddenly quieted down. Tiny lizards, which minutes ago had been racing along the sands, were now busy burying themselves in the surf.

Besides the gentle lapping of the sea upon the shore, they were suddenly enveloped in an eerie pregnant silence…
« Last Edit: September 30, 2013, 05:57:17 PM by Murometz »
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Re: Tales of Misadventure
« Reply #13 on: September 30, 2013, 06:37:04 PM »
The conversation drifted to and fro, and eventually Lumori tired of the Rasmus' Khaumic enthusiasm. His attention turned elsewhere, until his munching on their combined meal slowed as he noticed the sudden change in wildlife activity. Seconds passed by as the thief pondered, then his eyes widened. Something was coming. Something the wildlife didn't like. He interjected himself into the conversation rather suddenly as he began rummaging through his pack for a line to string his bow with.

"...Something has the wildlife spooked." With an excited, "aha!" Lumori pulled out a bowstring and began prepping his weapon for whatever might appear from the jungle depths.
« Last Edit: September 30, 2013, 06:57:10 PM by Chaosmark »
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Offline valadaar

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Re: Tales of Misadventure
« Reply #14 on: September 30, 2013, 06:52:15 PM »
Thorgir sighed and extracted his spear from the bundle of weapons he carried. 
The blade was unfortunately washed clean of the markings it typically bore - the salt water had washed away the ochre he had prepared it with.

"This weirdness normal, Ram-priest?" Not waiting for an answer he unlimbered his shield and prepared for battle.

   
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Re: Tales of Misadventure
« Reply #15 on: September 30, 2013, 07:16:52 PM »
Somnak ate in relative silence, though he did make sure to voice his opinion on more than one topic. The half-orc was fidgeting with his hands and grinding his teeth, obviously distracted.

He failed to notice the sound of silence until Lumori mentioned it, and quickly leapt to his fret, "You are right...! What devils does this strange land have to offer us?!" Somnak peered into the jungle edge, attempting to catch a glimpse of anything amiss.
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Re: Tales of Misadventure
« Reply #16 on: September 30, 2013, 09:21:49 PM »
Thorgir and Rasmus saw it first, as they were facing the sea while Lumori and Samnok scanned the jungle in anticipation.

Rasmus was waxing poetic on the evils of paganism and the true light of Khaum, when he suddenly stopped speaking and stared out into the gloomy surf.

The waters, sixty feet from shore, violently parted in a rising and falling crescendo, and bursting forth from the froth, came a primordial sphere from antiquity…

At least six feet in diameter, covered in chitin and scale, studded with a smorgasbord of sea-filth, the globe was iniquity itself. From its sphere-like body two antennae ending in what looked like eyes rose up to survey the horizon. Twin crab-like pincers clacking in unison, extended  from each side.

But worst of all, Thorgir noted, was its central eye, which took up most of its body. The eye was a thing of nightmares.

The creature from the depths floated upwards a dozen feet above the surging water, and floated in place silently, as if awaiting genuflection.

A giant, unblinking, alien eye now gazed upon them.
« Last Edit: September 30, 2013, 09:35:29 PM by Murometz »
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Re: Tales of Misadventure
« Reply #17 on: September 30, 2013, 10:46:23 PM »
His attention gathered by the signs of surprise from the two who were scanning the sea, Somnak turned and balked at the sight of the horror which parted the water as it rose. "By all the spirits of the beyond... It's a Demon of the Island! To the trees!"
Somnak snatched his Belongings and - without waiting to see if his new companions follow suit - made a beeline for the thick line of trees; hopefully it was thick enough that the horror could not follow, but so so thick that they cannot get in themselves!
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Re: Tales of Misadventure
« Reply #18 on: October 01, 2013, 07:05:30 AM »
With a supreme effort, Thorgir hurled his spear at the baleful eye, turned and booted it into the jungle.  The panicked throw fell well short...


Hit AC 10, unless there are range modifiers...

« Last Edit: October 01, 2013, 06:09:04 PM by valadaar »
   
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Re: Tales of Misadventure
« Reply #19 on: October 01, 2013, 04:17:47 PM »
Somnak managed to gracefully dive into the jungle cover, Thorgir simply crashed through the foliage, cursing as he did. His spear did not find its mark, but the barbarian didn’t hang around to lament the fact, following the half-orc as fast as his massive legs could carry him.

It could only be surmised that Lumori joined the pair in fleeing inland, as the sneaky thief was suddenly nowhere to be seen.

Rasmus for his part was either the bravest soul in existence or the most insane.

Chin up and out, the priest of Khaum stared back at the spherical leviathan, and even managed to shake his ram-headed staff at it and shout.

“What brings you to these shores, foul, benthic devil?  This island is in need of Khaum’s light, not thine soggy malignancy! Begone! Begone I say, in the name of Khaum, begone!” With that said, Rasmus removed something from his robe, a scroll it appeared, and began unfurling the vellum.

With one brown half-orcish eye, peeking out from between a lobelia and an orchid, Somnak watched the great beast’s reaction to Rasmus’ blatant challenge.
The reaction was hard to judge. After all, the floating eye did not seem even capable of communication. Nor could its “body language” be read.

Then came a silent, blinding flash of light and all three companions hiding in the bush had no choice but to turn away or cover their eyes, shielded though they were by the foliage.

If Rasmus had been blinded (or worse) they could not be sure, for the cleric’s back was turned toward them.

Startled, they watched as Rasmus then began levitating and slowly moving toward the horrific creature through the air, scroll still in hand.
« Last Edit: October 01, 2013, 06:09:48 PM by Murometz »
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Offline Shadoweagle

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Re: Tales of Misadventure
« Reply #20 on: October 01, 2013, 06:20:29 PM »
Feeling more secure inside the jungle, Somnak went for his bow. The distance was on the very edge of what he knew he could shoot, but he hesitated, glancing to Thorgir.
Finally, he lowered his bow, "I dare not incur it's wrath. The Cleric chose his path!"

With an angry growl, the half-orc began pushing his way deeper into the jungle, "There's no guarantee we're safe even in here; I am making some distance while that... THING is distracted!" Pushing away a stray branch which threatened to slap him in the face, Somnak wondered what other dangers awaited them within the thick of this jungle.
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Re: Tales of Misadventure
« Reply #21 on: October 01, 2013, 06:29:32 PM »
Thorgir had no illusions about felling the monster, but something was keeping him watching.  Keeping a tree between him and the unfolding scene, he watched.

He was not worried about losing the half orc, he would leave a track he could follow in his sleep.
   
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Re: Tales of Misadventure
« Reply #22 on: October 01, 2013, 10:42:25 PM »
I knew these would come in handy. Everyone else thought I was nuts, but even in a city there are trees. Just...not in the lower districts. The thief looked down at the gloves he had fished out of his pack and grinned. They were fairly standard fingerless gloves if one discounted the curved bits of metal embedded in the palms. But those curved spikes were what made the gloves so useful, providing extra grip by digging into the bark of the tree he had rapidly climbed to provide elevation.

He nocked an arrow and observed the priest of Khaum now floating towards...whatever-the-Crom that thing was. He'd normally let the creature have its way with the man, but the priest HAD shared his food with them. That imparted at least part of an obligation to him: rewarding helpful behavior was just smart business.

He raised the bow and put light tension on the string. It was just at the edge of his range, but at the first sign of actual danger he'd put an arrow right through that big eye in its center. The rest of it was armored, but that spot wouldn't be.
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Re: Tales of Misadventure
« Reply #23 on: October 03, 2013, 04:22:34 PM »
Somnak zigzagged through the nearly impenetrable foliage. Smells and sounds, unlike any he had ever smelled or heard before, assaulted his senses. Anything was better, he reminded himself as he pushed ahead, than staring at that horrifying eye back on the beach.

After a hundred or so paces, he slowed, perspiring from the exertion and the heat. As he caught his breath and listened for sounds from the beach, a huge dragonfly-like looking thing, buzzed near his head, and slowed, hovering directly in front of his face. It must have been the size of his palm. Shamelessly, it simply hovered, buzzing loudly, its rainbow-colored compound eyes, reminded Somnak of the thing back at the beach.

Then Somnak detected a new smell quite suddenly, perhaps the dense breeze had changed direction. This new odor however, Somnak was quite familiar with. It was the stench of death, the sickly sweet aroma of putrefying flesh somewhere nearby.

----------

Thorgir stared at the scene offshore, while cursing under his breath, as he felt ants (he hoped they were ants), crawling up and down him. The little devils had managed to sneak in through his leathers, and were now causing him anguish to no end.

Lumori stared as well, from atop a palm. His bow was ready; a split second would be all he needed…

Meanwhile, thirty or so yards offshore, Rasmus had come to a stop, and hovered in mid-air, another thirty or so yards from the Great Eye. The Great Eye then began making alien noises, but did not get any closer to Rasmus. The watchers from the beach, could not even tell if Rasmus was conscious or not at first, until the cleric of Khaum seemed to begin communicating with the fell creature! (it was difficult to tell)

There they hovered, the upstart cleric and the ancient leviathan, and what transpired between them could not be known.

After some time, the great-eyed beast suddenly began to sink back into the sea, as did Rasmus! In seconds, they both vanished into the bubbling, green-dark waters, simultaneously.

Seconds passed, then a minute or more, and the sea turned calm once more. No sign of monster or cleric.

(ooc: Lumori is free to get that arrow off as the beast starts sinking, if he so chooses.)
« Last Edit: October 03, 2013, 05:00:34 PM by Murometz »
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Re: Tales of Misadventure
« Reply #24 on: October 03, 2013, 05:00:33 PM »
Somnak snarled and swatted at the dragonfly as it buzzed around his head; this entire island was like his own personal hell! He then paused, turning up his nose, "can you smell what..." he paused when he realized he was alone, and then grunted crankily.

Though he knew it was against his better judgement, Somnak slowed to a stealthy pace and attempted to hunt out the source of the stench of death.
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