The sun was nearing the western horizon when Toretan crested the last rise before arriving at his home village of Capra. The young man took a moment to drink in the stunning view of the Varisian plains below before continuting on. He was anxious to see his father again after the recent weeks spent with his mother. As he stepped through the creaking, old door, he was surprised to see the old man bent over a cauldron over the fire. Arlo Packer is many things, but a cook is not one of them. The old man looked up abruptly and smiled in recognition.
"Ah, Toretan! Welcome home, m'boy. It's fine to see you. Would you care for some rabbit stew?"
"Never too late to try something new, m'boy! Here. Eat! Mind you, it's piping hot!"
Arlo dishes up a wooden bowl of the steaming soup and holds it out to his son. It looks harmless enough with carrots, potatoes, leeks, and chunks of stringy, white meat, if not a bit watery maybe. Arlo has a look of almost boyish pride on his face as he eagerly awaits his son's appraisal.
If Toretan gives it a taste, it is, in fact, quite bad. It's not disgusting, but certainly not even in the same class as Old Lita's stew.
Toretan sits and sips carefully at the hot soup, keeping his face neutral, "Hmmm, well Father, I've eaten many worse things." He grins out the side of his mouth, tempering the harsh critic with some humor. And layering on still more, "Did you get the recipe from Old Lita then?" He shifts from side to side, settling his large frame into his customary chair equa-distant between the fire warming the stew and his fathers own chair.
|Wildebob Star Voter 2013|
Arlo grunts in mock indignation at his son's jabs.
"So, I presume you've got little you're planning tell me of your time away, as usual, but the sun's gone down and so should we. We've a glorious day of toil awaiting us at sunrise. Your strong back has been missed here, boy. I'll douse the fire. You just finish your supper and settle yourself in."
Or to edit your post and switch it to the right avatar before the 1st hour is up. :oO.
Toretan was busy sipping stew as his father displayed his usual curiosity about his outings, and so was unable to answer. He does respond readily enough to the latter part of his fathers question, heaving a mock sigh, "You know I live for toil Father. It's good to be home." Toretan quietly finishes his stew in the dim light, and rinses his bowl and spoon and settles onto his stuffed mattress on the floor, enjoying -as always- the closeness to the land.
He lies in the darkness for a long time, staring at the ceiling and thinking thoughts of vista's, icy streams, and brisk mountain air. The mantras his mother taught to him, running through his mind as well, the sound of fist, elbow, foot and knee striking tree and rock. Repetitive and soothing. His mothers face smiling at his increasing strength. He holds that image in his mind, and places the face of his father's happy face next to that of his mother. He just holds them there awhile, studying their differences and their similarities, comparing his own self-image beneath theirs. With this tumult of thoughts swirling in his brain, the heavy Oread slowly drifts off to sleep.
"DROP HER, YOU MONSTER!"
Arlo's furious, though fear-tainted, shout rips Toretan from his dreams. His mind engages slowly until he notices distant screams and, more disconcerting, grunts of effort indicating a struggle much closer. Most disturbing of all is the panicked wail of an infant coming from just outside the door to his home.
Toretan jumps from his bed and races out into the night seeking the source of this terrifying chaos. Fortunately, it's pitch dark outside - a setting which has always favored Toretan because of his nightvision. Not ten steps from their home, Toretan sees a naked, pale, emaciated form with unnaturally long arms ending in vicious claws wrapped tightly around his father's throat. The form is pounding Arlo's head against the ground repeatedly. Toretan's father appears to be completely limp. Standing a couple of yards beyond and hopping with glee stands a second pale figure with a tiny thrashing bundle held under one arm. When the second figure sees Toretan's large figure emerge, its eyes go big and it bolts, running on its feet and free hand like some unnatural ape-thing.
Hope I didn't take too much liberty with Toretan running outside. I wanted to get up to this point before I have to go to school.
It's all good
Toretan can scarcely believe the horrific scene before his eyes, and for a split second can only stand shocked.
K(Nature-Untrained): 1d20 ⇒ 3
Init: 1d20 + 1 ⇒ (18) + 1 = 19
The figures are humanoid, but they are unlike anything Toretan has ever seen. Their skin is unnaturally pale, their eyes huge, red, and bulging, and their arms noticeably longer than their legs. Their mouths are full of sharp, broken teeth and their ears are large, reminiscent of a bat's.
Toretan hesitates a moment as he takes in the scene. Fortunately, the thing savaging Arlo is quite distracted by his grisly activity. Toretan is up first. You're about 20' from the thing. The one that fled is racing off into the night at the edge of his vision.
Toretan is loathe to let the beast with the child get away, lest his father's efforts be in vain, but neither can he forsake Father to this beast. He charges the creature attacking Arlo, running as quickly as he can, waiting for the moment the creature notices his approach. He leaps, not high and tries to loop his leading arm over the creatures neck. Rolling now over the things back, he shift his weight up and away, pulling his arm with all the strength he can, hoping his momentum and power is enough to yank the monster of it's feet and send it sailing in front of him.
'If I can pull this off,' he thinks to himself, 'then this monster will chase me and leave my father be, and I can follow after the baby snatcher ahead.'
Attack (grapple?): 1d20 + 4 + 2 ⇒ (9) + 4 + 2 = 15 The +2 is for the charge. Change the +4 to a +3 for a regular unarmed attack if this doesn't qualify for a grapple.
Damage (if needed): 1d6 + 3 ⇒ (1) + 3 = 4
I love grapples at the end of a charge. Not expressly allowed by RAW, but a super awesome visual!
The thing on top of Arlo looks up into Toretan's charge as if on cue. It has no chance to make any move before his thick arm encircles its neck. As Toretan's momentum carries him over the thing's back and he lifts with all his might, he hears an unexpectedly loud sound somewhere between a *pop* and a *crack.* As Toretan heaves the thing over his head in the direction of his momentum, it sails through the air and crumples to the ground a few feet away, limp as a straw doll.
A flicker of movement catches his eye at the corner of a nearby house. Toretan turns to see a very tall, lithe figure with skin as black as coal and hair, eyes, and teeth as white as snow staring directly at him in the most unsettling way. The figure's face is mottled and it takes a moment for Toretan to realize that its face is a twisted mass of black scar tissue, only mockingly resembling a humanoid face. It is smiling at him broadly, revealing broken and jagged teeth, and Toretan can feel evil intent radiating off of the figure in almost palpable waves. He feels a shiver run up his spine and then the figure is gone, as if it had been imagined. The night is cool and still, broken only by the distant wails of some wretched mother screaming out for her child as only a mother can.
The relief at feeling the neck of the pale thing snap dissipates instantly as he feels the eyes of the scarred being by the house. The chill the dread-looking monster leaves in his spine stays with him even as he sprints with all speed after the baby. He can only spare a glance at his prone father and pray to whatever god may be listening to keep him safe, the mothers cries spurring him to greater speed. He listens and looks frantically for any sign of the baby-snatchers passage even as trees, paths, and bushes pass his eyes in a blur.
Perception: 1d20 ⇒ 14
Survival (track - Untrained): 1d20 ⇒ 3
In his haste, Toretan overlooks a tree root sticking a few inches above the dirst. His foot catches it hard, and he cannot maintain his balance. He tumbles a couple of times and skids to a stop sprawled on his back. His heart thrills when he hears the faint cry of a baby in the direction he was headed.
Toretan leaps to his feet and continues the pursuit. About 300 yards further, Toretan must skid to an abrupt halt as he nearly runs head-first into a wall of stone. Looking up, the moonlight reveals a pallid figure loping up the cliff face with the same ape-like run on hand and feet he saw earlier, infant tucked under one arm. The cliff is steep, but there appear to be ample holds.
Again, tell me if I'm assuming too much of Toretan's actions. I figured that since the stumble was purely flavor, continuing pursuit was the logical next move.
Nope that's perfect. He'll keep going till he or the beast is dead probably.
Toretan looks up, and spotting the beast, gives a challenging shout, doubting the thing will understand, but hoping to provoke it none the less. "Cowardly worm! Face a man if you dare!" even as he starts up the cliff himself, trying to move with as much speed as he dares. He struggles at first and then makes some headway, hoping against hope he can catch thing vile thing before it's too late.
No idea what the DC is, but a 4 definitely isn't good.
Climb1: 1d20 + 3 ⇒ (1) + 3 = 4
Climb2: 1d20 + 3 ⇒ (15) + 3 = 18
Climb3: 1d20 + 3 ⇒ (14) + 3 = 17
Climb4: 1d20 + 3 ⇒ (6) + 3 = 9
Climb5: 1d20 + 3 ⇒ (4) + 3 = 7
Climb6: 1d20 + 3 ⇒ (11) + 3 = 14
Climb7: 1d20 + 3 ⇒ (9) + 3 = 12
Climb8: 1d20 + 3 ⇒ (4) + 3 = 7
Climb9: 1d20 + 3 ⇒ (15) + 3 = 18
Climb10: 1d20 + 3 ⇒ (17) + 3 = 20
Toretan struggles to get started climbing the wall, but is soon scaling it without much difficulty. He only gets held up once or twice before reaching a ledge about 80 feet off the ground below.
The ledge is actually quite large. At the back of the ledge is a small cave opening about 4 feet tall and 6 feet wide. The heavy pattern of tracks in the dust show that this cavern opening is frequently used. Toretan sees no other way the beast could have gone with its captive.
I'm sorry I'm posting so sparsely. Things are indescribably nuts. I really do think about this game every day. If you can be patient, I will continue to do my best and hope that my best gets better.
Perception: 1d20 + 7 ⇒ (17) + 7 = 24
Stepping forward a few steps he grits his teeth and rushes into the unknown, eyes and ear straining for the slightest sound or sign.
You see me complaining?! ;) It's all good.
As Toretan squints into the darkness, the faint wail of a terrified infant echoes to his ears. The cave is long and squat. It curves to the right as he follows it, his heavy feet splashing in the trickle of water running down the center of the floor. After a minute or so, it begins to descend, gradually at first and then more steeply.
Toretan follows the tunnel down into the heart of the mountain for what feels like 20 minutes. Suddenly, without any warning, the tunnel levels off and Toretan steps into a large cavern. He is unable to see he far side, but he can make out dozens of stalactites and stalagmites ranging from the size of twigs to the size of great oak trunks. The trickle of water that ran down the tunnel has pooled into a very large puddle that follow the wall of the cavern off to his left.
In the middle of the cavern, a half finished circle of strange runes and symbols can be seen. Though Toretan cannot see any color in this heavy darkness, he can tell that the writing was probably done in some thick liquid...and his heart leaps into his throat as he sees the pale monster standing on the other side of the circle holding the infant dangling by the leg over a small, stone basin, claw poised to rip open the child's throat. The thing looks at Toretan and its thin lips part in a sick mockery of a smile, revealing its jagged teeth.
Well that's just rude.
Toretan doesn't waste words, but his lips curl as he sneers contemptuously at the things cowardice. He lifts his chin and taps his own throat, daring the creature to face him. Inwardly he's hoping to taunt the vile monster, if such a thing is possible. Then he charges, aiming outstretched and stiffened fingers for the things throat.
Attack (+charge): 1d20 + 3 + 2 ⇒ (17) + 3 + 2 = 22 Damage: 1d6 + 3 ⇒ (5) + 3 = 8
As soon as Toretan takes a step toward the pale beast with the baby, he feels two separate heavy masses smash into his back. He tumbles to the ground as the weight is far too much to bear, but quickly rolls back to his feet and turns to see two more of the monsters springing to their feet as well about 10 feet away.
Don't suppose I can keep my rolls I already did?
He charges the one with the baby, aiming outstretched and stiffened fingers for the things throat.
Attack (charge): 1d20 + 3 + 2 ⇒ (5) + 3 + 2 = 10 and Damage: 1d6 + 3 ⇒ (4) + 3 = 7
You can keep your old numbers. I just wanted to give you a chance to change your action.
Toretan lunges for the throat of the thing with the baby. He hits his mark causing the pale monster to grab his throat and make a panicked choking sound. As it reaches for its throat, it releases its grip on the infant's leg.
Make a Reflex save to catch the falling baby.
The would-be-monk's smiles in satisfaction as his blow lands and the monster chokes, but the smile disappears when his effort is so successful the baby is dropped to the floor. He reaches his free hand down to catch the falling, screaming bundle. Reflex: 1d20 + 3 ⇒ (17) + 3 = 20
Toretan catches the falling child easily.
Just as he does, he feels the wind on his ear as a gnarled claw from behind him misses the side of his head by inches. He also feels a tug as hears a ripping sound as a second claw from behind manages to tear at his shirt but fails to injure him.
The child is thrashing and wailing deafeningly which is made worse by the echoes bouncing off of the walls in all directions. It reaches a disorienting cacaphony when it mixes with the enraged shrieks of the pale ones.
Back to you, sir!
He tucks the wailing infant under his left arm, and turns his body to shield the babe as much as possible. He considers the three ugly things before him and the room around him, wondering at his options.
Questions: How far is the entrance I came through? How wide is that same tunnel? Is is the only tunnel out of this cavern? What are the dimensions of this cavern? I'm trying to make a tactically sound decision but it's hard without knowing where I am in relation to things.
He'll try to down the injured one, hoping to better his odds of surviving this idiotic idea of his to chase the monsters into their hole. He moves towards the monster (5' Step), and away from the other two, aiming to avoid being flanked by the monsters while lining up for a powerful strike. He maintains his defensive posture since he's still in a rough spot.
Attack (Fighting Defensively): 1d20 + 3 - 4 ⇒ (8) + 3 - 4 = 7 and Damage: 1d6 + 3 ⇒ (2) + 3 = 5
AC is 19/17 with fighting defensively
I'm going to leave some of the details to you, within reason. It wouldn't do to have you abuse that and go nuts, but if you want to fill in any gaps with details, go for it! If you're in a clerk's office and you say "I climb up on a desk." That's fine with me. If you're in a cavern fighting pale thingies and you want to back up to a wall 10' away, I'm certainly not going to jump all over you and say "No way! It is 15' away!" Am I making sense?
But to answer your question, I imagine the cavern to be about 60' long and 40' wide. You haven't really seen any other openings in the room because you've been pretty distracted since entering. The symbol drawn in blood is precisely in the middle of the room and you ran up to the thing standing over the symbol, so I've got you precisely in the middle of the room. Hope that helps.
Toretan shifts away from his flankers, tucks the child under his arm, and takes a swing at the monster all in one fluid motion. Unfortunately, it turns out to be just a little bit too much to focus on at once, especially while trying to keep himself from being clawed. He misses.
The monster that was punched in the throat recovers himself and makes a snatch to recover the baby. He catches the leg, but leaves himself exposed to a counterattack. AoO!
One of the other monsters lets loose a horrid shriek and launches itself through the air at Toretan like a rabid mongoose, but Toretan is prepared for an attack and evades him. The third monster springs forward and succeeds at raking its claws down Toretan's left shoulder. 3 points of damage
Back to you.
Sounds good to me!
Seeing the creature grab for the babe, Toretan tries to take advantage of it's distraction with a knee strike to it's torso.
Attack (AoO): 1d20 + 3 ⇒ (18) + 3 = 21 and Damage: 1d6 + 3 ⇒ (3) + 3 = 6
Toretan sucks in breath quickly as the claws rip the flesh at his shoulder, but he steels his resolve and faces the freakish enemies. He moves 5' to the side, trying to get both enemies within an area in front of him (10' sq) and making a shushing sound to the still-crying babe. A deep, long breath in and Toretan lets his subconscious mind connect strongly to the stone beneath his feet, reveling in the solid and timeless feel of the cool rock. Shifting his weight onto one leg suddenly, he lifts the other leg high, almost perfectly straight above his head with muscles straining at the effort, and brings his foot down with tremendous force. The once smooth stone responds instantly, an area of 10' becoming a jumble of broken and treacherous rock around him.
As the injured pale beast snatches up the baby's leg, Toretan takes advantages and brings a crushing knee up into the beast's torso. Fetid air bursts from the beasts lungs as ribs give way and lungs collapse. It drops to the ground, writhing in pain and desperately choking for breath that won't come.
Toretan then sets the ground to rumbling with a tremendous stomp. The pale thing still on its feet before him loses its balance and falls to the ground as the stone shifts and lurches beneath its feet.
The third pale thing recovers from its unsuccessful pounce and tries again to leap onto Toretan's back to tear at his flesh. This time he's able to catch hold (grapple) but nearly dislodges itself as a wild swing of a claw throws it terribly off-balance.
You're up. You're grappled now by the thing on your back.
Hey! I remember this game! :)
Toretan curses at the beast astride his back, and tries to fend it off from himself and the baby while simultaneously stomping on the beast prone in front of him. Attack: 1d20 + 3 - 2 ⇒ (7) + 3 - 2 = 8 and Damage: 1d6 + 3 ⇒ (3) + 3 = 6