All it took was the explosion of fire and stone, mortar and goblin giblets to spur everyone into action. The direct assault upon Bolikar’s hold, the responsive shouting of orders and the closing of the gates meant that all time for slow, deliberate planning had run out, and decisive action needed to be taken to ensure advantage was found upon the battlefield this day.
From the east, Everyone took from their horses to the entranceway, some quicker than others as some sought to tend to their steeds, tying them off before making their dash. Aelistae led the charge, her lithe form fleeting between the shadows, as she rounded the buildings northeaster corner, Linnix, Jozan, and Intella right behind her, Artanis, Talus, and Dylan shortly behind them. Only Bartholomew had opted to stay behind for the time being, ensuring all the horses were properly secured, for to lose their means of fleet escape could cost them dearly. He too would join them after the initial confrontation cleared the way.
As the drow priestess crossed the threshold of the keep, a prayer and a battle charge in the name of her goddess spurring her steps, her direction was halted suddenly as an arrow whistled past her ear, to land in the earth before her, a second drawing a dark line of crimson across her cheek and slamming into the Wooden gate door, alerting her to the presence of danger at her flank. (Aelistae 34/38hp) Taking only long enough to cast a glance behind her, her keen dark vision enhanced sight was able to spot a pair of forms huddled behind the treeline, a larger creature behind them. There, that was where the arrows flew from.
And who could blame Elendil for such an action, as a drow of all creatures, the hated enemy of her kind, the surface elves passed into view, illuminated under the crimson glow of Bolikar’s projection overhead. At her rear came more enemies, a strange white skinned and glowing veined creature, another of like size gliding along seeking shelter in the refuge of the strong wooden gates no doubt. The armor clad woman, evil caster, and shadow wrapped woman all made their way for the keep, and Elendil would do all she could to stop them from joining the ranks of their goblin comrades..
Then, from the treeline as well came three darts of mystical energy came swirling towards Aelistae. Another attack from the trees it would seem. The drow could only raise her sword in preparation for the attack, but was shocked when the shards of light flew past her, to strike unerringly one of the goblins unfortunate enough to stick its nose out too far whilst pushing the gate closed. The dart’s exploded knocking the very much dead creature back into the swarm of others, only to be quickly replaced by another foul creature of the mountain caves.
Soon, the entranceway of where the doors were closing was filled with warriors, as Xaris, Aelistae, Artanis and Intella stood two abreast and two deep, with Linnix at their flank, while Talus and Dylan hurried to arrive in time. As the goblin’s noticed the enemy right upon their doorstep, many charged, to remove or capture those foolish enough to try and tackle an entire keep… only to be met with the cacophonous blast of Xaris’ hurled thunderstone, deafening many, as blood seeped from ruined eardrums, stunning more than a few of those caught in the center of the items effect.
(Will leave it here for change of possible plans, otherwise I’ll move straight into combat. Dylan and Talus can reply as arriving in due time as well)
From the west, Atharam spurred on Raykel, followed by Seleyon and Hawkrill in their favoured V formation, the lance tip at the arrow’s point, leading the charge into combat. From their some 600’ away, the horses would have to make full use of their pure blooded speed and stamina to make the doorway, but Seleyon wasn’t concerned with such trival things such as that. She would leave the steering to her horse, for she had other duties to attend to. Once, twice, thrice her bow twang went unheard, drowned out by the thundering hoof steps of the charging steeds. Her large, long arrows sailed forward, two of them catching an orc as he pushed the door closed, felling him where he stood, the third arrow sinking deep into the door itself, eliciting an under-the-breath curse from the beautiful copper elf, such was her goal for perfection. A score of seconds was all it took for the powerful mares to take the warriors to the gates of goblin infested hell.
Those gates would hold, they would not close, not until every last ill-blooded greenskin, monster, or bastardized form of life was absolved from this world, and with that in mind, Atharam and Hawkrill charged forward, into the ranks of the goblin horde. Atharam and Hawkrill’s horses biting and trampling as they went, lance and spear skewering those in their path. It was only by sheer number that their momentum was stopped, and the two soon found themselves surrounded by a sea of enemies. A glance about the area put a handful of strangers barring the north gate as well, A look of grim determination upon their face. The paladin was thankful to see reinforcements, even if they were strangers, but then he noticed she at the forefront of their formation. The dark skin, the long white hair, and the elegant looking blade which the holy warrior had known to have seen its share of kills….Drow!
With no time at the present to concentrate on discerning her intent (no actions left for a Detect Evil) Atharam could only focus on the sea of blood frenzied and panicked enemies around him and his squire, who was already trying desperately not to be pulled from Charger. In the gateway, Seleyon, bow in hand was still picking her shots keeping the doors clear of those seeking their seal, but she too was soon engaged by a teeming number of filthy creatures, their crude weapons raised for elvish blood.
In the far northeast corner of the central combat zone, Fate was first nearl deafened by the exploding thunderstone, then thought himself mad as Atharam’s gleaming form cut a swath into the heart of the goblin infestation, before being swarmed himself, and the arrival of so many more gave him cause to believe that Tymora willing, he may just survive this night. With renewed vigor, the strange warrior called out a warcry of his own, brandishing his ‘swallowtail’ to dangerous effect against any goblin or otherwise foolish enough to get in his way. “For the Glory of Amn!”
(Alright, while continuity may not add up exactly in seconds to rounds ratios, everything posted has been included in as best a fashion as to allow the flow and excitement of the situation to be maintained. By DM’s own words, I had her fire at Aelistae who cut across the Gate and tried to enter, which may in turn change Aelistae or the other’s response. Aelistae, Linnix, Xaris, Intella, Atharam, Hawkrill, Seleyon, and Fate can all see each other clearly, as well as the some three score or more (60+) assorted goblins, hobgoblins, orcs and gnolls scattered about. It is hard to see anything else beyond the confusion of the swarm.)
Posted on 2008-10-08 at 13:31:39.
Edited on 2008-10-08 at 13:35:44 by Kaelyn
Reralae Dreamer of Bladesong Karma: 142/12 2506 Posts
Linnix's heart nearly stops as arrows thud by Aelistae's head. Turning quickly, she looks for the source of those two arrows. Of course... they make the keep seem strangely unguarded while they set up archers outside of it to get people in the cross-fire. Linnix thinks, I have to stop them. Linnix draws her bow, taking careful aim, and fires at the archer in the distance.
The enemy of my enemy is...hopefully not another enemy
Aelistae darted towards the keep like a shadow emboldened by the setting Sun. Her dark form flitted from cover to cover – an upturned tree, a narrow ditch – until she found herself reaching her goal. But she had not been careful enough. The light from the keep illuminated her form, and, almost as soon as it had done so, two arrows hurtled towards her.
“Ah!” the drow woman exclaimed as one of the arrows grazed her cheek. Aelistae quickly looked back and saw two figures huddled beyond the tree-line, with an even larger form behind them.
“Snipers,” she hissed to her companions, as she gestured towards where the arrows had come from. But it was more of a warning than a call-to-arms. Aelistae knew that were she to confront them, she would risk leaving those she cared for to an uncertain fate.
It was just as well. When the drow priestess turned and finally entered the keep, she found that the battle had already begun. A cacophonous roar signaled Xaris’ charge into a multitude of goblins, orcs and gnolls, and from the east a trio of humans and a surface elf were battling for their survival.
‘Whol Il’Valsharess tu’jol l’Phor Siyannen!’* Aelistae sang, as she joined her blade with those of her friends.
[*‘For the Queen beyond the Stars Above!’
Aelistae is charging into battle to make best use of Xaris’ thunderstone. Since there are so many targets it doesn’t make too much sense specifying which one Aelistae wil go for. But she will try and cut a path from where she is now (at the northern gate) towards the others fighting the gobbos (ie Atharam and co.)]
Posted on 2008-10-09 at 08:49:08.
Edited on 2008-10-09 at 08:49:27 by Ginafae
Eledil is miffed that she missed the goblins, but smiled as the Drow jerked as one of her errant arrow sliced her in passing. Seeing the Drow and her companions rallying to the keep Elendil makes ready to move into action.
"Bronwyn we need to move."
Eledil fades back deeper into the trees and then moves to get as close as she can to the keep before leaving cover. She takes up more arrows in her left hand and set an arrow into place.
Once they get as close as they can Elendil heads for the gate, yelling to Bronwyn, "Run!"
Posted on 2008-10-10 at 20:29:44.
Edited on 2008-10-10 at 20:31:32 by Dragon Mistress
Dylan sprinted in under the closing gate in time to watch the keep descend into lunacy. A pair of mounted and armoured knights had waded into the thick of the conflict, baring steel left and right. Glowing bolts of magical energy swept bast Aeilistae, magic missiles the mages called them, from somewhere above and beyond the walls of the keep.
There was no time to take stock of the situation, or even catch his breath after the sprint. He took a step deeper into keep, getting away from the shutting gates, and focused his mind into weaving a song of magic. (Combat Casting if there are any monsters near him) Even after his sprint he found enough air in his well trained lungs to breath the whole song of summoning. The small, pinky-length candle he drew caught aflame and for a second and extinguished just as quickly as the magic began to take effect. In the midst of the goblinoids and other bestial races appeared a circle of light from which rose, in a shower of light, a grey wolf. It's fur shone, giving the impression of a silvery lustre as it leapt out to attack the spiteful creatures.
-(Celestial Wolf from Summon Monster II. It will rampage throught the enemies for the next 5 rounds. If it encounters a Gnoll or an Orc or anything stronger than a goblin, it will smite them with its 'bite' evil ability. Should it not encounter one of these monsters, it will chew over the possibility of taking down a goblin in its last turn. Note that I do not see Atharam or his allies as potential enemies, so the wolf will refrain from assaulting them.)
With the secure knowledge that his spell successfully took effect (hopefully), Dylan drew his rapier and either looked for anyone who could use a hand, or fought with the monsters that surrounded him as he cast the spell last turn.
(On a final side note, I forgot to keep track of how many spells I have cast tonight. My count is 1 first level, 1 second level with this last round, and a stream from my wand, as well as 1 bardic music use. Am I missing any?)
Posted on 2008-10-12 at 20:08:02.
Edited on 2008-10-12 at 20:45:40 by Sibelius Eos Owm
Brianna Not Dragon Mistress Karma: 105/32 2282 Posts
Bronwyn the turtle
Bronwyn is done for the night. She is having trouble wrapping her head around the terrifying fireball and its effects on flesh and blood. That they were goblins that were the enemies of humans really didn't lessen her horrified reaction to the results.
This whole night had already pushed her to the max. and now this tipped her over the edge. her stomach was cramping and she knew she was about to heave up whatever resided in her stomach. She was so far out of her comfort zone she did not know is she was coming or going. Only one thing impinged on her mind was to get out of here. She had done what she could and now the gates were shutting but there was no way she was going any further. certainly no closer to the Keep.
Bronwyn stumbled backwards to the one constant in her life the short, stout Buttercup. Bronwyn managed to keep on her feet that far and when she got close enough to her pony she grabbed onto Buttercup's neck like a lifeline and hugged her. Bronwyn buried her head into Buttercup's thick neck and long mane.
It was the closest that Bronwyn could come to withdrawing like a turtle into its shell. She began to sob quietly, tears flowing freely. She was not heroine of old and tonight had proved it.
Elendil found her holding onto Buttercups for dear life and told her they had to move. Anywhere away from her was fine with Bronwyn. She took up Buttercup's lead and walked quietly with her behind Elendil. That was until Elendil move out again towards the keep closer to the gates and tole her to run.
Bronwyn stood like a rock.
"No way! I am not going in there. You go if you want to but I am staying right here."
Posted on 2008-10-13 at 06:09:54.
Edited on 2008-10-13 at 06:16:08 by Brianna
Talus drew near to Linnix and Aelistae and caught the priestess' hissed warning of snipers. He scanned the treeline but his magic-enhanced vision didn't extend that far and he couldn't make out anything distinct in the shadows. He wouldn't be able do anything about the archers from here and, without knowing how many hid in the trees, running back across the open ground to deal with them could very well be suicide.
Frustrated that he could do nothing about the distant enemy threatening his friends, Talus turned his rage to the nearest goblin. He wanted to make the goblin simply disappear, take away any ability it had to inflict harm on others. He pointed his finger at the foul creature as it ran toward the invading dark elf, and prepared to blast the wretch into the Abyss.
Unaware it had been singled out by another opponent, the goblin took another step toward its drow enemy and began to swing it crude club wildly. That club drew Talus' attention at the same moment he intended to release a blast of eldritch power at the repulsive creature. Instead of the familiar twisting purple ray springing from his finger, a single foreign syllable forced itself from his lips, "Diri!"
((The following may need an edit, depending on saves, etc.))
The power contained within that sound coalesced in the goblin's club and the wood seemed unable to contain it for it simply broke apart into a hundred pieces, leaving the goblin staring dumbfounded at his empty hands.
Confident that the now unarmed goblin posed no further threat to Linnix and Aelistae, Talus turned his attention to the group trying to close the gates, raining his eldritch powers down upon them until they abandon their efforts to secure the gates.
((Cast Baleful Utterance at the goblin nearest Aelistae. If needed, cast defensively. Then eldritch blast and nearest thing trying to close the gates in the next round.))
Posted on 2008-10-13 at 09:46:45.
Edited on 2008-10-13 at 09:58:17 by Deucalion
Elendil is being torn apart, She want to go after the Drow, and she caught a glimpse of humans, it seemed who were fighting the goblins inside.
From the sound of the horns echoing about the forest from many directions she knew that this area would soon be overflowing with goblins.
"Bronwyn, she yells above the horns, screams, and cries as she grabs the pony's lead rope and pulls it around, knowing that the mage's precious equipment is packed on the pony, "hundreds, maybe thousands of goblins are heading this way, our best chance is to join those inside who are fighting the goblins and orcs. There will be less of them in there than out here."
She switches from her bow and takes out her sword, so she can lead the pony toward the keep and still fight.
Posted on 2008-10-14 at 19:05:35.
Brianna Not Dragon Mistress Karma: 105/32 2282 Posts
Bronwyn screams at Elendil. "Stop don't take Buttercup. They will kill her and eat her. She tries to grab the rope from Elendil's hand tugging on it frantically to get her to release her precious Buttercup.
However. Elendil's firm grip did not release the pony's lead rope and their combined weight and strength literally dragged Bronwyn along with them as she fruitlessly struggled to free the lead rope from Elendil's hand.
It was a strange sight, not that anyone had time to watch with all the fighting around the gate as Elendil dragged the bony and Bronwyn closer to the Keep.
"No! Don't! Please don't take her. Go yourself but leave her here."
Posted on 2008-10-14 at 19:53:27.
Edited on 2009-03-04 at 19:20:24 by Brianna
There were tears in Elendil's eyes as she headed toward the gate, "Bronwyn," she cried out, I can't protect you out here. I can't fight hundreds of goblins, let alone thousands. I could hide out there, by you could not and they would find you and kill you."
Posted on 2008-10-14 at 20:26:20.
Brianna Not Dragon Mistress Karma: 105/32 2282 Posts
Brownwyn wins the battle
Bronwyn remained stubbornly resistant in her efforts to keep Elendil from dragging Buttercup into the keep. Buttercup resisted too the noise and smell of goblins made her shy from the battling goblins and orcs. Buttercup heard Bronwyn pleading with her to stop. She turned her stout neck back to Bronwyn and tugged hard against Elendil's pull. Bronwyn's grabbed the lead line and assisted Buttercup's efforts.
Buttercup stood still at her mistress's earnest entreaties, her study legs like four posts dug into the ground, deciding she too did not want to move any closer the the horrible smell of goblins and orcs and the deafening sounds of battle. The rope pulled free and Bronwyn jerk it away with all her strength and turned to return to the line of trees.
Xaris hurled the thunder-stone and watched explode in its glorious cacophony of death-defying sound. Many goblins were stunned, and Xaris took the opportunity to by-pass the weaker ones and head straight for anyone that looked like they would be commanding the goblins. Killing the leaders would surely demoralize the goblins to the point of surrender.
Intella reached the closing gate in time to place herself into a corner position of a "box" formation, second row and to the right. She was able to, briefly, glance toward Xaris just as he lobbed something into the sea of goblins ahead. When it hit, a booming roar of sound reached her. A smile of satisfaction lit her face. Good move! The creatures affected by the blast were knocked senseless and immobile or writhing in pain and useless in battle, but others swarmed in to take their place as the pain-distracted ones fell either to the deafening blast of sound or from arrows or steely blades.
She quickly glanced at the others and noted directions of movement and choice of weapons, and again draws her two siangham from their sheaths
Intella noted that Xaris followed his own throw into the mass of goblins, striking the smaller creatures almost as an afterthought, seeming to hunt for more challenging prey. Intella broke away from her position in the "box", taking Xaris' lead. Yondalla had taught her a lesson in the last few brief encounters before arriving here. Darting, dodging, weaving through the onslaught of lesser challenges, she also sought the leaders, if any were visible and accessible. She had no compunction about wading through "fodder" to get to one of the leaders, but would no longer focus on them as worthy opponents. She would defend herself against attacks from the goblins, but not waste her energy on them otherwise unless directly threatened by a group of the green-skinned abominations attacking in unison, in concert. Not likely with goblins, but possible as coincidence.
[ Esesentially, she's looking for gnolls or orcs, i.e. larger-framed leaders of groups, as a greather threat and therefore a greater challenge. And also to demoralize the led groups, as with Xaris' tactic, but in a different direction to avoid a dupication of effort in the same area. Until she is in close-melee with a leader, she will employ TwoWeapon Fighting/Defense tactics, unless and until a serious wound indicates a lack of smarts, and a need for more focused attack(s) .. ]
Like a battering ram, Atharam and his companions slammed full-force into the pack of greenskins attempting to shut the gates and seal the battle inside the keep. With Helm guiding his arm, the holy warrior tore his way into the midst of the swarm, leading the charge until the weight of numbers put a stop to their momentum. With shield raised, he dropped his lance and drew his sword, immediately turning its razor-edge onto the minions of the dark with lethal force.
With a fervor driven by his thirst for justice, his sword and cape whirled about his mounted form, creating a silver and crimson blur above the battlezone. It was from this vantage point in Raykel’s saddle that he spotted a figure on the other side of the yard…a Drow! But from the quick glance he earned, it seemed that it was leading a group…against the goblins and orcs? That couldn’t be right…
He rapidly dismissed it for the moment, though it took an exceptional force of will. The dark elf was too far away for him to worry about. Right now, he had his companions to focus on, as well as keeping that gate from closing. And from the looks of things…his friends were as hemmed-in as he was. While Seleyon was a seasoned warrior, Hawkrill was the one he was worried about. He knew the lad lost his nerve when Atharam’s regal figure was out of sight, For the squire’s sake…he had to ensure that didn’t happen.
Turning a spearhead aside and returning with a downwards swipe to knock the weapon away from him, Atharam tried to force some room to maneuver. He could not allow Hawkrill to be pulled from the back of Charger. Not at any cost…
“Be strong, my friend!” Atharam bellowed at the top of his lungs to be heard over the chaos. “Find your faith in Helm, your want for justice, your hunger for right! Find that raging within you, and you shall not fail!”
He dug his greaves into Raykel’s flanks, attempting to force his way to his devoted squire. Sword flickered in the night, his shield and armour guarding his body from weapons meant to pierce his flesh. His mount’s mane and nostrils flared, steel-shod hooves tearing up ground and those unfortunate enough to be caught in their way. And while Atharam felt somewhat iffy about turning his back on a Drow…his priority lay here at the gate.
Atharam surveyed the immediate area, attempting to isolate the biggest, toughest member of that unclean horde, made straight for it. Teeth grinding, his muscles bunching beneath his protective steel plates, he fought with god-given strength and conviction, hacking and slashing his way forth to protect those dearest to him.
(OOC: Its not great, but better than nothing. Atharam’s going to try to ram Raykel right into the biggest target near Hawkrill, and will try to get Raykel up alongside Charger so that he can fight and protect the squire’s flank. Despite my description…he’s not using Smite. We’ll see how this plays out…)