Winter Drake Hunt (Winter 1230)

In reply to Esteban, in Latin, Guillaume says, "Or we could let him go and track him. Then we would no for sure where he goes instead of where he says. We would also see what comes forth from wherever he goes."

Gardaitis just looks confused. What happened to the original mission, to track down this Brute? Is the covenant that cash-starved, to drop everything and gallop after treasure, or are the magi just that distractible?

Was Gardaitis there earlier? I've lost track. If so, he was probably present to hear that the Brute shows up when ogres are being attacked and since we've lost him the best way to lure him out is to attack ogres. If he wasn't there, then yes it would seem that we got distracted easily.

(( He was there. He's just wondering what happened to the plan we spent 3 pages discussing to go to Bone Hill and enter the Brute's hut. Besides, the Brute showing up when ogres are attacked is not at all the impression I got. I think (as does Gardaitis) that the Brute shows up when innocents are attacked. Not quite the same thing. ))

Actually, the original mission was to hunt drakes. The end goal of which was to train and practice working together, and perhaps gather some vis. That in turn changed into an ogre hunt, then specifically the Brute. End goal the same, train together and learn to cooperate. But we then figured out that maybe the Brute is not a bad guy after all, then it became an investigation. Same end goal, learn to work together. But now, it may optionally change again. What, did you expect things to be linear and direct? :laughing: So we might pick a fight with some ogres, track down goblin gold, maybe even battle the dreaded Salt Wyrm of Las Salines.
No matter what, the real goal is always still the same. Learn how to work together, to cooperate, train and become a better team. We are rough stone, with a little work we can become as a polished block of marble.

Carmen sits thinking, contemplating all the information she has taken in. Listening to the others interrogate the captured goblin, Gardiatius and Guillme dicussing their theories, Vibria's gold lust dreams and Estaban's query (certainly he is egar for glory and adventure). Then there is what the drakes said, just now and earlier.
And her Intuition kicks in
I propose an entirely new plan of action. This Salt Wyrm, the Serpent of Las Salines. Let us hunt it and seize it's entire treasure. Maurice, you and your bretheren, would you not rather partake in capturing this hord of gold? This Brute, which I suspect to be the fairy tale character Gulio Ghules, is of no threat to you. I think Gardiatius speaks right, it only appears when innocents are attacked. If you attack ogerlings or ambush ogres nonchalantly, it triggers the faerie in it's story cycle. The goblins do not trigger it, for they are tainted with evil as everyone knows, and thus are never innocent. Ogres in a war band, or picking an open fight that is not an ambush, I think that will circumvent the creature. And besides, would you not rather rather start a gold horde of your own? Do you depend on your grandfather for inheritance?
Marice grimaces. We have a shared horde hidden away, tiny but a good start. We are a pack bound, my brothers and I. The dragon has three heads. It is unusual for drakes to share a combined horde as we do, but that is our unique nature.
And you are telling me that you couldn't do with just a little more gold? Which is more important to you? Revenge or Treasure?
Sodales! What say you? Shall we journey north and have the goblin show us the secret way they acces the salt caves? I have heard of the humble people of Las Salines. It is said they offer an annual sacrifice to appease the serpent so that they may posper in their salt mining. In ancient days, it is said the offered up their virgin daughters. This may be an exaggeration, and they do nothing of the sort now-a-days. But my father told me that they throw seven livestock animals into a pit every June, that there is a dragon that sleeps within and awakens one day a year to eat this offering and then slumber again.
And actually, I don't know how much of any of that is true. But I do know that the drake brothers just confirmed amongst themselves that such a gold horde exists and that a dragon lairs there. Vis and gold, glory and honor, a heroic act to liberate an oppressed people!
That is my advice, anyway. Make of it what you will. But if we do decide to do this, I suggest we start off now and march through the night. We can lodge at the villiage of Las Salines at dawn and rest all the day, then begin our quest at nightfal.

Gardaitis listens to Carmen, and chuckles quietly once she's done. "Despite the fact that this gives a whole new meaning to the term 'mission creep', I'm game." A straightforward treasure hunt, with no moral complexities... would certainly be a refreshing change.

He jerks his head at the two tied-up hobs. "I'm going to turn those two loose, then, so they can 'lead us to the treasure'. More likely they'll disappear along the way, which is fine. Vocis said his familiar tracked the third one anyway. After that, I'll take wing and scout from above: last thing we need is that band of ogres dropping in for a visit."

I say put them on a leash. You cannot trust those evil mischief makers. The one that Vocis tracked probably ran back to his family. And I think that what Vekath said about their "paying protection" is more of an extortion scheme than a bodyguard service. But avoidance of any such potential problems is why I suggest we get moving. I don't need them to lead us to the caves. I know where the town is, as do all of you. Las Salines is on our map. The locals would be more than glad to point out the lair, I am sure. But I want the goblins to show us how they manage to sneak inside. Perhaps some sort of secret entrance or back door.
Actually, no. Let them go. They will probably try to trick us and lead us into a trap. The fact that their claims of having gold was confirmed by Venkath's tale of how they found a horde where a wyrm sleeps; that is enough of a lead to inspire adventure.
And mind you, this has never been a mission. It is an exercise. And so far, I think avoiding moral ambiguity is a point in our favor and a lesson learned.

As for the three firedrakes, though talk of leaving alone the faerie corpse-ogre that plagues them is upsetting, the talk of gold and ransacking a horde has kept them quiet and uncomplaining. Venkath even grins.

...waiting for the other shoe to drop so I can tell you Carmen's real plan :smiley:

Gardaitis nods to Carmen, comments to the hobgoblins "No soup for you", and looses their bonds. Once they take off, he neatly coils the ropes and hands them back to Carlos. Waste not, want not.

(( There, Marko. Have a shoe. ))

Carmen laughs. You know what's going to happen now, don't you? These goblins now know we are on our way to nab their gold stash. And the ogres who extort them will know that, without a money supply, the goblins cannot pay for "protection". They will try to intercept our route and ambush us. And if they don't all the better. We simply take the dragon gold and go home. But if they do, it should then trigger the Brute's appearance. We can then observe and investigate it in action. Then after that we go get the gold. It is a win-win situation :smiley:

Mind you, not everything is up to me here. I did set up the situation, but did not originally think of this plan. I had a sudden flash of an idea the other day thinking about what Carmen would do. Been trying to have her keep quiet so you guys can make decisions.
Keep in mind. I handed control of the Brute over to Fixer, who designed the critter. If this idea actually works, it is entirely up to him. It gives me a little space to play Carmen as a player-character :slight_smile:

Vibria grins at the question...the answer is so obvious (to her, anyway) that even a three-year-old could answer it.

Vibria would whole-heartedly concur with this sentiment.

:laughing: :laughing: :laughing:

So, take a break for Confidence awards.
Everyone gets a base of 1 Confidence point.
Next comes a bit of honesty and self evaluation.
Award yourself 0, 1 or 2 points based upon your comparative level of involvment and activity, taking into account factors such as availability and earnest interesting roleplaying.
Then vote for another player (not yourself) to gain a special bonus. The value of this bonus is to be determined by myself and revcealed after all vote are in.

For example...
Carmen gets a point, and I award myself one point as I evaluate that she has had a medeium effect but could have done more.
Then I vote for Gardiatius to recieve the bonus. We shall see who gets the bonus and what that bonus is after all voyes are in.

Does that go here, in the ooc thread, or to you via pm?

I put it here because I want to settle up before the story progresses. But the vote component inspires some to send it as a PM. I understand the impulse to use the OOC thread, and almost chose that option. But this is a matter that only affects characters participating in this specific story thread. So here or PM, I don't mind.

So, moving right along, I will presume that everyone gets enough rest that Fatigue is recovered/not lost, and the group sets out heading North about an hour before dawn. At dawn, we take a Parma/spellcasting break, and continue. I estimate that we will arrive mid-morning, unless we are attacked by ogres as Carmen suspects we may be (I need a volunteer fro a random roll of a simple die, odds means we are attacked just after dawn, evens means that they chicken out but may attack us on our way back).
Any questions, comments, or modifications?

Sounds good to me.
Gardaitis' spells are "Bear's Fortitude", "Aegis of Unbreakable Wood", and "Wings of the Harbinger" for bird form. He'll be circling above the group, riding the thermals and watching for ambushes and other unpleasantness.
(The casting totals are high enough that he can cast without Fatigue -- I think the casting would be non-stressful, but I can make rolls anyway if you'd like.)

I am willing to say you are relaxed casting. np.

I'm inclined to give myself 1 point (barely). It took a long while for me to start feeling it, and to start to find my character's voice, as it were. If I had found it earlier, I probably could have been more active than I was, but overall, I think one point will do.

As for the bonus: what the heck, let's go with Gardaitis.

I think you sell yourself short :slight_smile:
Vibria is a lot of fun and has been quite entertaining. But it is a self evaluation based upon what you expect from yourself, so as you see fit.