Sunday, August 26, 2018

Whoopin' With Orlanth Session 2: About a Bat

It was the 25th of Fire Season, and members of the Swan Song clan had been missing for several days.  They had left with men of the Red Cows to go to Jonstown to trade some goods they had picked up while raiding.  Of the Swan Song clan, only the impious man known as Danmag returned, declaring that the others had stayed in Jonstown of their own volition.  Elgane Fairhair, an initiate of Issaries and member of the clan ring, felt this sounded fishy and she decided to gather some of the daring young warriors to investigate.  She selected...

Amsi - Vingan daughter of the clan chief

Armind - huge warrior dedicated to the Stormbull

Henkel - a trickster in training

and Eirick the Chartreuse - hunter and initiate of Odyala

Rather than question Dangmag, the party decided to head to Jonstown directly and see what was up in the town.  En route, they encountered a group of horsemen from some distant part of the empire going through a narrow defile.  Amsi, who spoke their language, noted that they were arguing about something.  It seems one, who was either currently drunk or had a massive hangover, was angry he did not get the more interesting duty of going to see "the Bat."  The other members of the patrol cautioned him against such desires, noting that those who go to "the temple" return horror-stricken or mad.

Being no fan of the Lunars, and wanting to interrogate one of them, the party ambushed the patrol before they could make it out of the defile.  An initial volley of spells and missile weapons did little, but the sight of Armind appearing over the ridge and going berserk spooked the patrol's horses.  Only one of the men was able to keep his horse in check.  Armind slew the man nearest him and Henkel forced the one who seemed to have control of his horse to start vomiting uncontrollably.  One of the members of the patrol fell from his panicking horse uninjured, only to have his femur split by Armind's huge maul.  The remaining horseman managed to regain control of his animal and charged Armind and Eirick. Erick set his armor ablaze and Amsi struck at him with a lightning bolt but the man kept coming.  After missing Armind with his sword, Eirick was able to place himself in his way and gut the man, his intestines spilling out as he fell from his horse.

After slaying the others, the party decided to interrogate the man with the broken femur.  Amsi was able to coax out of him that a temple was being constructed to the Crimson Bat, a Lunar god and war weapon of tremendous power, less than a day's ride south of their tula.  Worried that he would report their apperances to the Lunar garrison at Jonstown, Amsil slew the man after receiving this information.

The party debated for some time whether to go to this temple or press on to Jonstown, ultimately deciding to head to Jonstown because they could reach it before nightfall.  Arriving at the external gate, they noticed members of the Culbrea tribe arguing with the Lunar guards.   Apparently they weren't being let in because the 30 head of cattle they had would flood today's market and interfere with prices.  After Amsi and Armind spent some time petting the cows, they headed in, declaring to the guards they had come to buy supplies.

Even the modest size of Jonstown seemed overwhelming to these hillfolk, and they had some difficulty getting around.  However, they spotted a sign for a branch of Geo's Inns, which they knew from seeing in other villages, and they decided that was as good a place as any to ask around.  Inside they found a few members of the Red Cow clan who live in Jonstown and run supplies to Red Cow Fort when necessary.  These men told a terrible tale: apparently Dangmag and members of the Red Cow clan decided to lead other Red Cow and Swan Song warriors who had gone against the clan to fight in Starbow's Rebellion into the town so they could be sold to the Lunars.

The Red Cow carls didn't know the fate of these men, but Amsi guessed that they would be taken to the Crimson Bat Temple to be sacrificed at its dedication.  Armind agreed that that was the sort of thing the Lunars did, and the party began debating how next to proceed.  They debated between buying horses and setting out that night to intercept the escort and prisoners before they got to the temple by road or to wait in the morning and beat them their by traveling through the hills.  After some discussion about funds for horses, they decided the latter option was best and purchased rooms in Geo's.

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