Rebuilding Brangmar – Pt. 10

The tarrasque looked at the small guard outpost. A group of creatures left the building. It cocked its head to the side, trying to decide what to do. It shrugged slightly and moved back to its original path. It passed within two meters of the guard outpost, knocking it over with the tremor from its passing.

“What was that?” Throbor asked. He glanced at Tribst who was sketching the creature in his spellbook.

“Yes, tell me what it was called so I can title this sketch.” Tribst put a few finishing touches on the drawing.

Erin shook her head and sighed. “That was a tarrasque. Apparently they just walk around the plains here.” She fell silent and looked over towards Aram.

Aram was kneeling and seemed to be praying. The rest of the party waited for him to finish before turning and walking back toward the forest. It was still raining, but now they had nothing under which to take cover.

The trek to the forest was mostly uninterrupted. They saw few beasts during the day, and those they noticed at night kept their distance. Lurking just outside the firelight, eyes aglow. During one such night Aram’s and Erin’s watches overlapped.

“So, what’s it like?” Erin asked.

Aram sat up from his bedroll. “What’s what like?” He pulled his sword from the ground beside him and stood to belt it to his side. He strapped his shield to his arm with the quickness of long practice.

“Living among non-human creatures. It probably just feels normal to you.” Erin shook her head at her self-perceived naivete.

“Actually, on Yerkir, the humans are on a pogrom against winged snake creatures.” Aram shrugged. “I don’t know how it started, but both sides are vehement about killing. At least most of them…I don’t really want to talk about it.” He motioned at Erin’s bedroll. “You should sleep. Long day tomorrow.”

Erin shook her head and went to her bedroll. To her surprise there was a suit of studded leather armor next to the bedroll with a note on top.

“Erin, this is the armor I made for you. It should fit pretty well because I was praying to the metal while I did the ritual. Don’t worry, I stayed in the camp while I did the ritual.”

With a grateful sigh Erin lowered herself into her bedroll and let sleep wash over her.

– – –

Tribst shook Erin awake with his hand over her mouth to keep her quiet. He whispered to her as he pulled his hand away. “Shh. We’ve surrounded by creatures all night, but some of them are getting closer. I think they’ve been following us since the tarrasque passed by.”

Looking around the camp Erin noticed a pride of lions surrounding them. The sun was slowly rising from the horizon.

“Well, at least they don’t have a blue aura.” Erin said, now knowing that silence would make no difference. “Teblats would not be a welcome sight.” She started putting her new armor on with the help of Tribst.

One of the lionesses approached the camp. In an instant all eyes were on the creature, prepared to fight it off. Then, to everyone’s surprise the creature changed shape into an elf. The elf had short pointed ears, one of which had several wooden earrings.

“Greetings, outsiders. We have been tracking you for the past few days. Why do you go to our forest, and how did you escape Domhan?” The elf stared at the four of them, awaiting an answer.

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Rebuilding Brangmar – Pt. 9

Throbor adjusted the metal on his back and pointed to an opening in the crumbling city wall. “There, we can leave this wretched place. I only hope we can find others to help us.”

“Well, in my experience elves live in the forest.” Tribst pointed to the north-west. “If I’m not mistaken there are some trees on the horizon.”

Aram pulled a spyglass from his side and looked through it. “Yes, quite a few days away, I’d wager.”

“Where’d you get that?” Throbor motioned to the spyglass.

“Oh, Yerkir is an island realm. I’ve spent a lot of time at sea. I’ve spent some time in the crow’s nest.” He put the spyglass away and pulled out a sextant. “This might come in handy, but we can see the forest on the horizon so I don’t think we need it…unless we plan to travel at night.”

The party glanced at each other to see if anyone thought that was a sound plan.

“Well,” Erin voiced, “none of us can see in the dark, so that’s probably not a good idea.”

“True.” Throbor motioned to the horizon. “Well, let’s start going then. The daylight’s a waisting.”

– – –

After a half a day’s travel in cold rain towards the forest the group found an abandoned guard outpost. The outpost had flowers and grass growing out from between the masonry, but the roof was still intact. Thankful for the respite the party went inside the small building.

“So, how long do you think this place has been abandoned?” Tribst poked at the stools positioned around a small table. “The wood’s not rotten.” He sat down on the stool.

“I’d guess it hasn’t been used as a guardhouse for a long time. Maybe someone else has been using it.” Amir looked out the window, ever alert.

Erin tested another stool then sat down. “Well, at least we can have a short meal in peace.” She pulled a few pieces of dried jerky from her pack. “Who wants some?” She popped a piece in her mouth and began to chew slowly.

Reaching down and taking a piece from Erin’s hand Throbor shrugged. “Whoever’s been using this place isn’t here. It’s a cold day and it’s raining so it wouldn’t surprise me if they’re holed up somewhere.”

Tribst took a piece of the jerky and began chewing on it. “Aram, you want some?”

“Yeah, sure. Just don’t want to let anything sneak up on us.” Aram snagged the last piece from Erin and broke it in half. He put the first half in his mouth but didn’t chew.

“You, know, on Earth jerky is a delicacy.” Erin moved her stool against the wall and leaned back. “It comes in a whole bunch of different flavors, too.”

“Really?” Throbor sounded interested. “What can you tell us about Earth?”

“I can really only tell you about the country I’m from. I know some older stuff about other countries, but I haven’t lived there.” Erin shrugged. “I’m sure America would be interesting to you guys, but it feels boring compared to what I’ve done since I’ve gotten here.”

Aram chewed and swallowed the first half of his jerky. “This feels relaxing to me. I’m used to standing vigil on a ship for days straight then rushing into battle on the shore.” He shook his head. “That magic pulled me from a battle. I think I was about to die.”

“Well, I don’t know much about your culture. On Midgard, humans that fall in battle go to Valhalla.” Throbor shrugged. “I expect that they really go to the open arms of Hel, but I’m not a human.”

“Hel? Who’s that?” Tribst was jotting things down in a small tome.

“If I’m not mistaken,” Erin replied, “Hel is the goddess of the underworld, and the underworld is also known as Hel.”

“Right. You know a lot about the culture here and from my home.” Throbor motioned to Aram. “What about his culture?”

Erin looked at Aram. “What is the name of your home realm?”

“Yerkir.” Aram shrugged. “Our common tongue was once known as Armenian.”

“Oh,” Erin shook her head. “I don’t know much about Armenian myths. In my realm, there’s a country called Armenia, but they mostly follow a different religion. I don’t know anything about the old one.”

“What about Nevre, do you know anything about that?” Tribst asked, unsure if he wanted to know the answer.

Erin shrugged again. “Never heard of it before coming here. Nevre isn’t part of Earth at all…at least as far as I know.”

“So, what’s America like, then?” Throbor asked, intrigued.

“Not now,” Aram interrupted. “I see something approaching.”

Tribst glanced in the direction Aram indicated with a sweep of his arm. “Oh, gods. We need to leave, now.”

“Why, what is it?” Erin looked out the window. Her D&D knowledge set flags off at what she saw. “That’s not good. Move. Now! If it sees us, we’re dead!”

A large dinosaur, bigger than any of the ruined buildings in Brangmar, was walking towards the guard outpost. It was like a squat version of a T-rex, and it looked hungry.

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Rebuilding Brangmar – Pt. 8

Aram quickly woke up Throbor and helped him into his armor. The gargoyles were nearly upon them when they finished.

“So, you know of gargoyles. Do you know anything that can help us fight them?” Throbor asked, directing the question at Tribst.

“Hmm…” Tribst thought quickly. “No, I don’t. If we had more time I’m sure I could find something, or Erin could cast a spell to learn of them. For now, we need to fight. Here they come!”

The gargoyles didn’t just land in the courtyard, one of them attacked on the way down. It was able to sink its talons into Tribst, but Erin got an attack off on it as it tried to make off with him. Tribst was dropped hard, and the gargoyle’s left hand was missing some fingers.

Annoyed at being grabbed Tribst shot some force magic at the gargoyle, causing some chipping to appear on its body. “I’m not some lizard for you to snack on you treefting piece of shast!”

Erin stared wide-eyed at Tribst for a moment before sheathing her long sword and grabbing her short bow. She shot the gargoyle that had attacked Tribst, increasing the chipping on its body.

Three of the gargoyles rushed forward and attacked Aram and Throbor. Throbor was able to interpose his chisel between himself and a gargoyle while Aram’s shield was only able to help him with one. The one that hit him left a large claw mark in his left side.

The fourth gargoyle, the one Tribst and Erin had damaged, flew back over to Tribst. It attempted to slice at him, but used its left hand and missed with the remaining fingers.

Aram sliced at the gargoyles around him with his sword and hit the one on his right. Chips appeared where it had been struck.

Gripping his hammer in one hand Throbor swapped his chisel out for another hammer. He struck at the gargoyle before him, trying to crush its wing between his hammers. The gargoyle blocked one of the hammers, only taking a glancing blow.

Tribst pulled out a dagger and tried to bury it in the chest of the gargoyle beside him. He was able to sink it into a chipped area, but it didn’t stay there.

Switching back to her long sword Erin gripped it in both hands. She ran over to the gargoyle and tried to slash at it. She missed horribly, rethinking her weapon choice.

Seeing an opening in Throbor’s defense the gargoyle battling him ducked under his arm and circled around behind him. He struck at Throbor’s back, leaving large, raking claw marks in it. The back of Throbor’s leather armor was ruined.

The two gargoyles fighting Aram buffeted his shield with attacks but were unable to hit him. In the midst of the blows, Aram shoved the uninjured one back and struck at the one he had hit before. His sword pierced a wing, causing it to crumble and fall off.

“Aim for the wings! Cut off their escape!”

Spinning around to face the gargoyle that had just raked him Throbor focused a searing energy into his right hammer and brought it down on the gargoyle’s left wing. The wing shattered into pieces leaving the left side exposed. Throbor side-stepped and brought his left hammer to bear on the gargoyle’s exposed side.

As the hammer connected with the rocky skin cracks appeared along the left side of the gargoyle.

Tribst watched in horror as the gargoyle that had been attacking him turned to take a bite at Erin. It took a chunk out of her shirt as well as her side. Responding instinctively Tribst once again shoved at the gargoyle with his dagger. This time he was able to find its heart. The gargoyle turned into stone, then shattered into pieces. “Stone to stone.”

Seeing the gargoyle turn to rubble in front of her Erin decided it would be prudent to heal herself. She said a small word of power and the wound on her side started to knit together ever so slightly. She then moved forward to help Aram with his gargoyle problem.

Erin continued to grasp her sword with both hands but this time aimed her strike before she swung. The injured gargoyle was able to dodge the worst of the attack, but more chips and some cracks started to appear on it.

The gargoyle that Erin had hit let out a powerful and horrible screech. The gargoyle next to it, the only one with both wings, took off for the edge of the city. Unable to do anything to stop it Aram took another swing at the one next to him. It shattered into pieces.

The Gargoyle on Throbor slashed again, this time missing entirely. It was met with two hammers to the face, crushing it to dust. Throbor dusted himself off and handed some blue ash to Erin. “Here, finish healing with this.”

“Thanks.” Erin took the offered bag and started rubbing the ash into her wound. “I hope we don’t meet them again. They weren’t hard to kill, but they sure hit hard.” She took a fistful of the ash and started rubbing it into Throbor’s back wound. “Here, you need this as much as I do.”

Tribst took a small handful from the bag and rubbed it into his shoulders. “I don’t know where they’re going, I’m just glad they’re gone.” He pulled another handful of blue ash from the bag and gave it to Aram. “For your side. That looks nasty.”

“Well,” Aram said after their wounds were attended to, “the sun is already rising. Should we just continue out of this city for now?”

“Sounds good.” Erin stared at her exposed side under the torn leather armor and at Throbor’s exposed back. “Maybe we should keep an eye out for better options on armor.”

Throbor looked around at the ruins and saw pieces of metal everywhere. “No, I have a better idea.” He removed his leather armor and handed it to Erin. He looked less intimidating in his cloth clothes. “I think Tribst can help make you armor with that. I’m going to forge out my own later.” He started to collect scraps of iron from around their campsite. “I can make you a set too, Aram, if you want some better armor.”

“In that case, Erin should take my leather and Tribst should fashion himself something more protective. My size is similar to Erin’s” He didn’t start taking off his armor. “For now, however, I will keep my leather. If we get in a fight I want to be in the thick of it with protection.”

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Rebuilding Brangmar – Pt. 7

The ritual wore off and the four adventurers found themselves able to speak Gaelic. It was strange. They knew the language as if it was their native tongue, and yet they knew they had previously had no knowledge of the language.

“So, this is weird. I have to keep myself from falling into Nordic, but I can speak this tongue as if it were the one I learned from birth.” Throbor ducked to avoid some low-hanging debris. “Are we heading out of this ruin or exploring it?”

Aram hopped over some discarded boxes with something rotting in them. “There’s nothing more to do here. Let’s move on. I don’t want to run into more of those Teblats…oh, that’s what they’re called.” Continue reading

Rebuilding Brangmar – Pt. 6

Tribst, the salaman, walked over to Throbor who was scooping up some Blue Ash and pulled out a few pouches from his small pack. He began to scoop up some of the ash as well.

Erin watched for a moment then turned to Aram. He was also watching them scoop up the ash. She grunted to get his attention then pointed at the discarded adventuring materials he had dropped. Continue reading

Rebuilding Brangmar – Pt. 5

Throbor’s head was a little fuzzy after taking some of the damage from Erin’s attack. Carefully getting to a standing position Throbor caught the attention of the strange dogs again. The three of them turned to face him. The fourth, which seemed to have been the leader, was turning into a pile of blue ash. Throbor lashed out with his hammer, hitting one of the dogs atop the head. When he went to make another attack he realized that his chisel wasn’t in his hand. “Shit.” Continue reading

Rebuilding Brangmar – Pt. 4

Carefully climbing the slope of a downed spire Aram took point and Throbor took the rear. If anything appeared in front the warrior would catch it, and if anyone were to slip the jotuun would catch them.

Aram made it to the surface and looked around. All seemed clear and he gave a caution sign. Then he also gave the clear sign. Cautiously he pulled himself onto a stable part of the cobbled road and helped Erin up. He nodded to her and turned to survey the area more thoroughly as she helped Tribst up. Continue reading