"Hmmmm....hmmm." The Green man mumbles to himself between spoonfulls of stew.
"I'd say press on, we are getting started now, so we might as well strike while the iron is hot as they say. Besides, I would like to complete the survey before the seasons change."
Errol bows "More than fair... I agree to your terms without reservation." and then with a smirk.. "I am more than willing to gift you with a fashionable scar for the return of my blade. Get a good night sleep swordlad, I will be ready to cross steel with you in the morning."
"Well, we can't really have much say in the development of this place until we help contribute some funds to it don't you think?
Sure, helping to keep the land safe is good, but people cannot eat vouchers. Oleg has to look after his profits before he can build to suit us."
"But in principle, an armory would be good, but do we have someone who can make weapons and armor?
Ordinary people might appreciate a simple blacksmith more, to take care of the little things they need, like the shoeing horses and making bands for barrels."
Wanna use the Duel rules From Ultimate Combat?
"You are right Green, and we should give a look at the whole loot and see what we need and what we can trade, the horses and weapons we gathered could be a good start. We could also gather the farmers from around here, for a couple of days of celebration, you know, a fair, bring people together, eat, trade, talk. Let's settle the Stag Lord and then establish an holiday."
Norton smiles, feast and happy people have always been his favorite.
Then asks Oleg about the old man "Oleg, did Grumpy come here? I sent him for that berry stash we brought last day." Then he seems to remember something important "Svetlana, I think Furiel has something for you."
The Green Man is quite pleased that his opinions were noted, but he focuses on his stew to hide a smile and a slight blush creeping up on his face.
Oleg, dressed in a nightshirt and boots, nods... Svetlana stands behind him. With the door open you hear snoring behind them. Oleg answers Norton with slight frown. "Yep... apparently our other accommodations were bad for his back. He's inside..."
Svetlana peeks around Oleg's shoulder intrigued "Oh? What is it?"
Rogar - sure, we can do that
The Green Man looks up in surprise, then scowls as he spots Oleg and Svetlana.
"Now who woke you up? I said to let you sleep."
Muttering a little he directs dirty looks around at anybody who could be responsible, then he chuckles and seems to forget all about it.
'Oh it's fine... we weren't actually asleep yet- My ring! Look Oleg!"
"Ha! Would you look at that!" Oleg slaps Furiel on the back while Svetlana bends down to hug the gnome. "Oh... by the way" Oleg continues with a dramatic tone... "this came for you this morning" He walks over to the table and sets down a rolled parchment with stylized script similar to your charter.
The parchment commends you on your efforts, and states that the Stag Lord is wanted "dead or alive". it continues to say "If he is removed from power, by evidence of body or by the word of an agent of the swordlords, you will be granted a new charter to settle land and establish a colony in the Greenbelt. 5000 gold will also be gifted to aid your continued efforts to civilize the stolen lands."
"The courier said if for whatever reason the body is not 'available' as proof, they will send an agent to confirm he has been dealt with." Oleg adds as you read the charter...
"Hah! There will be a body, I PROMISE not to eat him until AFTER it has been confirmed that he is dead.
Unless I run out of crispy bacon."
Looking at some shocked faces The Green Man laughs uproarishly.
"It was a joke people! A joke that's all. There ARE things I wouldn't eat."
|Ta'de-win of the Gale|
"If we are to develop this land, we should remain cautious. Time and again that has been attempted. If we attempt to fight the land, it will repel us. I would hope we attempt to work with the land and it's creatures."
Thinking upon Green's joke, "There are many animals that would eat their own kind. Usually amongst insects and fish, so it is not completely unnatural. I can recall one variety of snake that has actually been known to eat itself at times."
"Are you talking about Ouroboros? In my home land we have a story about the midgard serpent. A violent creature that encircles the world.
So full of rage was it that when it spotted it's own tail, it began to swallow it, it's dim mind not comprehending the pain it felt.
And the pain only drove it to greater anger, so it kept on biting and eating."
|Ta'de-win of the Gale|
Ta'de-win smiles at Green, "I was not speaking of something as grand as that, I'm afraid, though a good reference nonetheless. I would be interested in learning more about this legend, when we have the time."
"I think we should try to sneak into the camp. Grumpy said they have a passphrase, which means they might not know each other so well. Other thing Grumpy said is that nobody was intended to be walking around the perimeter, probably traps are set there."
Then he frowns. "I thought the kobold shaman was some Sal'dor's associate in disguise, but if Svetlana's ring was taken by Kressle Things don't add up."
"And the journal provided no clues? I didn't look at it myself.
But it certainly sounds like there are many factions working in this relativly small area of land.
As for the ring, how did you lose it Mamsel Kressle?"
"Hmmm, even if we can't read it, finding out which language it is written in will be a good start, then we can find someone who can read it for us.
Maybe one of the people here at the trading post even."
"Sounds fair enough, and logical too I guess.
There is your answer then Ser Ambrosi, thrice stolen and once returned eh?"
Morning comes. Rillo and Bunyon are at the table, both wearing toolbelts. Budgie and Arliss are feeding and watering the horses. Kjell is prepping the worksite for the Gielgud boys and himself to get to work on finishing the stables. Rook and Jhod, who seem to be getting along well, are busy chatting while fletching arrows. With the smell of bread baking, Svetlana must be busy as well. Oleg is whistling a tune while stacking wood by the firepit. It is the warmest morning you have had this season, and the trading post is buzzing with activity.
Kesten approaches Rogar "May I have a word with you Ser Valertis"
"The prisoner Errol tells me you have made him a proposition. I don't trust him. He seems far too confident about besting you. I don't mean to offend, but I... I don't want to see you get hurt should he have some trick up his sleeve." He then looks at you as if trying to read your reaction before coming to any real point.
"Excuse me, friar Jhod? We would like for you to take a look at a journal and see if you can read it, or identify the language used in it?"
The Green Man will produce the journal from Norton and show it to Jhod.
If he is unable to help, The Green Man will simply make a circuit and show it to everyone else at the tradingpost just to make sure.
Jhod smiles, wipes off his hands, and takes the book. "It would be my pleasure, young man." After flipping through a few pages he pulls an amulet of a bow made from elk horns from behind his shirt. He chants briefly... what is left of his hair moves like windblown patches of grass... the amulet glows and dims. "Undercommon... " he mutters as he reads.
After a good 12 minutes of "hmms" and "eeshs", "Seems this kobold was born a gnome. After being killed, he was reincarnated... but as a kobold. Hateful bitter thing he was. Apparently when he had decided to take his own life, by using a scroll of flight to go as high as he could before the duration ended, he had dream. A dream he was quite certain was a communique from someone... a witch of great power who offered him a deal. If he followed her command to bring down the kobolds and mites and human prospectors, she would return him to the body of a gnome. .... Crazy stuff.."
"Hmm, interesting reading, we better go tell Ser Ambrosi as well, he was most curious about how things were connected.
His mind is much sharper than mine, I'm sure he'll be able to make sense out of it all."
The Green Man will lead Jhod off to have a talk with Norton, then, after they get to talking, he will head off himself to fnd a second helping of breakfast.
The witch is probably that one "black blooded" witch with Saldor, seems he's ultimatly responsible for the death of the miners.
Furiel continues the narrative.... "And you find amongst the new settlers a particularly precocious and charming gnome named Furiel. In a dark ceremony he will be restrained. Your spirit will eject his to wander helplessly while you will have both his body and magic power of epic proportions..."
Bluff1d20 + 10 ⇒ (20) + 10 = 30
As Rogar spots Norton he immediately moves towards him waving his hand as he approaches:"Ambrosi! There you are! Good! I'm in need of a small favor from you... I need a second to witness my duel with that Mivoni lout, Errol. If you were to be so kind I would be grateful..."
"Yes, not to mention sober. It makes me angry; he sets us on the staglord like we were game hounds, ready to harass a big old boar.
Well, he best watch out, when game hounds are mistreated, they sometimes turn on their master..."
The Green Man bares his enlarged lower tusks in a fierce scowl.
As Rogar approaches and tells his tale, The Green Man chuckles.
"A duel? This should be good; you are not going to fight in the style of my homeland are you?"
Rogar looks baffled by Norton's ignorance:"A duel with Errol. My blade against his. He wins he can go free, I win, he'll be honor bound to serve us for an year and a day. And I'm pretty sure you were there with us when I suggested this. Anyway, they are waiting... would you be my second or not?", just after this Rogar chuckles hearing Green's question:"No, I don't think so my friend. Just a plain old Aldori duel I fear"
"What a pity, I haven't seen a good Holmgång in years. But maybe it would be hard to find the tools we need at such short notice."
Shrugging a little, The Green Man smiles.
"On the other hand, I've NEVER seen an Aldori duel at all."
Tapping his nose as he thinks, he suddenly looks at Rogar.
"But it won't really be one will it? Errol isn't trained in the Aldori School is he?"
|Kesten of House Garess|
"Remember how upset he was when the talk turned to such matters? I would be willing to bet that he is a former Aldori swordfighter himself."
Rogar considers how to answer Green's question: "Well... Errol is from Mivon, they are... cousins of sorts I guess. Mivon's a small realm south of here, in the River Kingdoms, formed by those Aldori who choose to flee Restov after the Valley of Fire. I heard they don't cope all too well with their ancestor's cowardice and hate us Aldori who choose to face Choral instead of fleeing, for our part we don't care overmuch about them, although some consider them part of the swordpact still. Anyway I heard they developed an interesting style... I'm eager to test it out myself"
Then Rogar motions for Kesten to lead the way:"I'm always ready... shall we go, Ambrosi? I've got to teach some swordplay and I hate to be late"
Norton looks at Rogar with astonishment. "Are you insane?" are the words that cross his mind, and he falls just short of speaking them out loud.
"Errol walking free? This is not going to happen, not before the Stag Lord is down, it will disrupt any chance for us to sneak into."
The Green Man strokes his chin as he ponders what Norton says.
He may be right...
Not wanting to hear the possibly explosive response Rogar is no doubt about to unleash, The Green Man goes of to find Kressle.
"Mamzel Kressel, a word if you would?
How much do you know about this fellow Errol?"