The Vis Hunters (Summer 1232)

[color=red]"Thank you!" Vibria says as she gives Vocis a not-so-quick hug of appreciation.

[color=red]”It's still in the planning stages, but I've never properly explored the area to see what's up here. All I've seen so far is the area right around the Covenant and the route to Grandfather's cave. Do we have a map of the area we can look out and plan our explorations with?

“And I appreciate your rearranging your schedule for me. If you ever want me in the lab, or for anything else, just let me know, I'll do what I can.”

Here are some regional images :smiley:

We have a couple maps in the library, but I wouldn't trust them. I'll bring Liberto along. He fancies himself a huntsman and I know he's been roaming the mountains since we arrived. He should put us on a good trail fairly quickly. He glances down very briefly...two married men and...Vibria...alone in the wilderness...and rubs a small scar on his cheek. And Gerard as well, I think. He's a good lad, strong as an ox and brave as they come.

He hesitates for a brief second, then waves her off. Oh, think nothing of it. Amelia keeps telling me I need to get more exercise anyway. Says she married a soldier, not a scribe. I'll speak with Liberto and get him scouting the area.

Vocis most definitely is not blushing. He's just excited at the prospect of a hunt. Honest. :slight_smile:

So we have Vibria, Vocis, and Liberto. Anyone else? Maybe a few of the Gold Griffons?

Alejandro. And maybe Guy and Vidal, depending on how dangerous they think it might be.

That, and those are the only two guys that Alejandro can think of who wouldn't volunteer just because they're hoping Vibria loses her clothes again.

And Gerard.

Vibria, Vocis, Liberto, and Gerard. :smiley:
And the weather is wonderful, the full moon is out, and the air smells sweet.

[color=red]"I think we might have better luck if we broke the area down in sections," Vibria says as she leans over next to Vocis and looks at the maps.

[color=red]"I don't know how extensively the covenant has gathered the vis in the immediate area in the...couple of hundred years it's been around, so we may have to go further afield than we normally would if we were a spring covenant. Perhaps if we traveled a couple of days in...this direction," she continues, indicating a random (plot-convenient) place on the map, [color=red]"and spend a few days combing the area thoroughly, and then move in this direction, only coming back to the covenant when we have to, to resupply or bring what bounty we've found."

She smiles. [color=red]"It's been too long since I've gone out on an expedition. I'm looking forward to it."

As you are both Masters, Captain Alexandro Perez insists that you also take one of the seven champions with you, a seasoned veteran that knows the terrain. Javier is the Expedition Sergeant, and is responsible for seeing that your soldiers are properly organized and that your expedition is properly equipped. So no need to worry about packing a ten foot pole and 20 units of iron rations. You are sufficiently supplied with whatever I figure Javier would figure you need.

That also gives me an excuse to analyze your grogs.
We can fight in a Trained Group if armed with sword and shield except Alejandro who will have to use a pole arm or use no shield. We can slip into two groups, with Alejandro teamed with Guy et Vidal (who need shields) and Javier with Liberto & Gerard. Vocis cannot fit into a group unless he has a shield or some sort of boost to Defense. Vibria's good with or without a shield.
That is not counting Armor. Let me check that really quick.
And everyone is good. Except Vibria. She is clad like a tank. Good for solo fighting, not for a group. The enemy would ignore you and pick on the weaker ones. It breaks the abstract (requiring scores to be within five points of one another).
But a couple of well placed spells should smoothen things out :smiley:

The team trudges afield in that direction: Vibria, Vocis, Javier, Liberto, Gerard, Alejandro, Guy, and Vidal. And a couple of pack animals and a few dogs.

Plus, Vibria's trained a season with the Andorran Guard, so she can work with them as a group and do the Wizard's Lance maneuver or whatever it is. (Except for the fact that her Parma still sucks butt.)

Probably a good thing, since Vocis hasn't trained with the grogs. He'll probably be invisible and relying on magic rather than arms anyway. Liberto's also much more of an archer than a melee combatant, so Alexandro may want to throw in another infantry-type grog.

Vocis, Liberto, and Gerard have already been updated to 1234 on the wiki. If you're wanting a true analysis I'll need to rewind them. In Vocis's case the only change will be the loss of his new Glitterboy armor. 8)

And Celeste, though she's not trudging. Just want to make sure you take her and her sensory link with Vocis into consideration when setting scenes.

Vibria, Vocis, Celeste, Javier, Liberto, Gerard, Alejandro, Guy, Vidal, three pack mules, four dogs, and two horses.

In reference to Guy and Vidal; it seems that both these guys are members of the Gold Griffon Almogavars from the Vibria Company, or they were and have privately contracted by Vibria. But they are still mercenaries, is that correct?
Also, Vidal is listed as a Mercenary Captain. That may be a bit much, as it would imply he is the commander of the Gold Griffon Division. If you want him to be just at sergeant or corporal level, I recommend "Custos".
And why is he so slow?
Wait, I see it. He is overburdened for his level of strength. No matter, he still is within Trained Group range. Don't worry about it for now. If and when a combat encounter happens, I will work with what the actual situation at that time is.

And the situation is this:
The team has been hiking in the mountains for about a week or so. The summer scenery is beautiful and you guys are actually having a good time. These guys are accustomed to each of your Gifts, and you might practice sharing Parma. Vibria can form a Wizard's Lance with two grogs, and might like showing off. Vocis likes the structured exercise and the fellowship. The party chased off a giant badger and caught an Ibex while hunting and roasted it for supper last night. Other than that, nothing interesting has happened.

Hiking along in the mid-morning sun, the dogs start barking and running after something. Alejandro can tell they have the scent of something. Soon you see what it is, the carcass of an adult brown drake, mauled and half eaten. What kind of monster hunts and eats dragons? Liberto, our wildlife specialist, studies the scene and finds a clue that solves the mystery for him. He holds up a large broad feather. Huge actually.
Owlbear, but nearly twice the size as normal.

Yes, they're both Gold Griffins.

Yeah, that makes more sense than Mercenary Captain, since he's a low-level NCO (for now). Fixing it now.

Yeah, most of his slowness comes from the Full Metal Scale armor.

All well and good. But what about the giant owlbear?

(Sorry, I had posted this morning before work, and all I can post then is quick snippets that don't require much in the way of thought.)

I would say that, with her luck, she wouldn't be in the armour all that long...but then I remembered what armour she's wearing, and Vulc would be pissed if anything happened to it. :stuck_out_tongue:

Vibria will practice sharing her Parma with others. It means they'll only have MR 0 each and Vibria will only have her Form Bonuses, but that's technically better than nothing. So. Alejandro and....rattle rattle k-klunk Vidal.

First thought – does the drake corpse look at all familiar?

Second thought – what's an owlbear and what's it doing here? (Int 1 + Magic Lore 4 + die roll of 0 (thankfully not a botch - 9) = 5.)

Third thought – track it down, kill it, and take its stuff?

The drake is no one you recognize nor is it one of your grandfathers wild offspring. The Brown drake has no wings and is more like a giant lizard and could be considered a natural animal if it wasn't for the fact that there were no giant lizards in the region at this time. It has a low might, but makes up for that in ferocity and strength.

The Owlbear is a chimera, combining the features of a bear and an owl.
Your roll fails to tell you even that. Liberto will have to tell you. It is a magical creature endemic to the region. Simon your firedrake cousin likes to munch on them. But the feather from this one indicates that it is twice the size of a normal example of its kind. That means eight times the mass. A giant owlbear.

As wild animals, owlbears don't normally have stuff. But the existence of one this large and ferocious is certainly a curiosity.

Might as well check to see if the drake has any vis left in its body, or if Owlbearto ate it all. Going for an InVi, base 1 ("Detect the presence of vis"), R: Touch +1, D: Momentary, T: Individual (I think), for a base Target level of 2; any overage going to increase the Base. CT is In 4 + Vi 3 + Sta 2 + die roll of 6 + Aura Modifier of ? = (15+x) ÷ 2 = 7½ + ½x. Which, barring a negative Aura modifier of -5 or greater, should be enough to tell her how much vis is in there.

Once Liberto fills her in on the Owlbear, Vibria looks at the huge feather in her hand, then at Liberto with a playful smile. [color=red]"Even this big, though, he's not fireproof, right?"

You scrounge up a single pawn of Animal

I dunno. I guess not. But he seems pretty big, so he may just be that tough.
And it probably has a high might score too.
The question remains as ever though. Where do these things come from? Why do they exist? And how did this one grow to be so huge?