Bryrgar's Journal
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Bryrgar’s Bio

Bryrgar Stonefist, image (c) Kristin Johnson
The first seventy years

Bryrgar Stonefist was born into a proud and strong family: a family with some prominence, in the finest dwarven stronghold in over a thousand years. Bryrgar, in fact, is even great nephew to King Harbromm. True, Bryrgar was born 25th in line for the crown, but in reality he will never feel the weight of that crown (and the relation is from his mother’s side). Not that Bryrgar could never make a good king some day, but the mantel of king in a dwarven stronghold does not change hands very often.

Tarin, Bryrgar’s father, is a well respected member of the Squashers. The Squashers are men of great honor in the Citadel. The Squashers are not completely unlike the famous Gutbusters of Mithral Hall, except that the Squashers have been known to use tactics from time to time. In fact Tarin has been ripping and tearing orcs and their kind apart in the name of Citadel Adbar for over 120 years.

Tarin’s battles over the years are probably why Bryrgar and his older brother Davin both turned out to be clerics. Bryrgar’s earliest memories are of sitting around the family table as Tarin retells the stories of the day’s battles. Davin and Bryrgar would often bandage up Tarin as he explained what the “silly orcs tried this time.” It was the boys’ job to help their father ever since Isaron, their mother, was killed only 5 years after Bryrgar was born. Isaron was part of an envoy on its way to Silverymoon that was ambushed. The group had been traveling above ground to appease the moon elves that were traveling with them. Trolls attacked and killed nearly every member of the party. Two of the elves and one halfling survived to tell of the ambush. The battle had been swift and Isaron did not suffer. After that fateful day, the word “elf” took a sour tone in the Stonefist home.

Bryrgar showed exceptional talent at healing, even from the young age of 15, a skill that earmarked him for a life in the front lines, near his father and brother. By the age of fifty, Bryrgar had also shown a traditional dwarven lust for battle and would sometimes have to be reigned in by his superiors from joining the Squashers in their duties. All and all, Bryrgar was making a little bit of a name for himself.

More than a few troops had made it home only to the bravery of Bryrgar to charge into the thickest of battles to not just heal, but to also stand over and protect a badly wounded comrade. On one special occasion Bryrgar noticed a small band of orcs slipping around the lines and trying to sneak up on a key fortification. Bryrgar knew what would happen if any key link to a line was broken, so without anyone else near enough that could help or get there in time, Bryrgar took matters into his own hands and launched himself at the seven orcs with reckless abandon. His screams to Clangeddin could be heard for miles, and it also may have saved his life.

Bryrgar ran up a downed tree and launched himself into the orcs. Two orc heads hit the ground before his feet did. After that the real battle of the day was on, two Squashers were limping their way to the backlines to see the clerics when they heard Bryrgar’s call to his god. They looked in time to see his brave attack on the orc band, and they also saw the battle turn ugly for Bryrgar. Within seconds of his assault he was disarmed and fighting with his fist. At first this was no real advantage to the orcs, but it was only time until their weapons began to wear him down.

Bryrgar did manage to fell another of the orcs before he was bore to the ground. As the light and sounds of the day began to fade from his consciousness he got a glimpse of feet and beards fly past his face. Later that evening when he was able to be revived, his two newest-best friends were sitting by him. Croyly and Soren were at his feet sleeping.

Croyly and Soren had been able to reach Bryrgar just in time. The two severally wounded men then decimated the remaining orcs. Still inspired by what they had seen, they took Bryrgar to safety and then went back to the battle lines where they had left. They told their comrades of what they had seen. The fifty man Squasher platoon then decided to dedicate the fight to Bryrgar. They charged into the center of the next orc wave and destroyed it with ease. Then instead of regrouping, as they are often told to do, they turned and charged the orc line. More than a handful of orcs turned to run; this left a one on one fight for the orc line. Odds that would not favor orcs, even if these dwarves were not the Squashers. Once the Squashers broke through they headed for the orc leaders.

And as any historian of orc battle tactics can tell you, once the chieftain is running, it is ok for all the orcs to run. And once all the orcs are running the battle is over. The names of Croyly, Soren, and Bryrgar were all toasted well and repeatedly in the Citadel that night.

After that day the three were nearly one, as you rarely saw one without the other two in tow. Over the years the three managed to get into and out of an amazing amount of trouble. And it was well known that if you were in an Inn and got into a fight with one, you were in a fight with three. In this time the three also had a chance to make a few enemies.

In particular there was an instance where Soren, the jokester of the bunch, had set Croyly up for a gag, but the gag went bad. It seems that Soren had gotten his hands on a potion that would make a beard turn green and had paid a bartender to slip it into Croyly’s ale one night at the Bleeding Knuckle, the three’s favorite drinking hole. The drinks got mixed up and Boerin Ironfist got the drink instead. Now as it happens Boerin was the source of the idea for a green beard. Boerin often made comments and followed them, “Or I’m a green bearded gnome.”

Well, on that fateful day Boerin who was no less than captain of the night watch, had made a similar comment of the likes “No thing alive has ever gotten past me on my watch, no flying, no walking, no crawling thing.” And then he said, “Or I’m a green bearded Gnome.” He followed this claim with a big swig of his ale. The laughter and tell of the tale spread through the Citadel faster than any breeze could have taken it. It took three weeks for the green to wear off. Boerin was completely humiliated. He found out about Soren and the ale about two days after the incident. To put it politely he beat the story out of the bartender.

Everyone waited for his fury. Many suggested that Boerin would kill Soren flat out, and both of his friends for being part of it, even if they knew nothing about it. Boerin spoke to no one unless he had to for almost a year. Some began to suspect that Boerin was just going to let it pass. They were wrong. On one fateful night Boerin Ironfist and twenty of his clan came into the Bloody Knuckle and arrested Soren. Soren was charged with treason. Boerin had five witnesses, all Ironfists, that claim to have been near by in the field of a recent battle and to have seen Soren give these details to a Dark Elf for a bag of gold.

Then Boerin and his men showed a rather large pouch containing over two thousand gold that they say they had just took from Soren’s home. Bryrgar and Croyly had heard enough and launched themselves at the Ironfist clan immediately. The boys however were not armed and the Ironfist were. The two were joined by a four Squashers who were in the bar. The fight was violent but short. For as soon as the boys attacked, twenty more Ironfists came charging into the bar.

When it was over Bryrgar and the four Squashers had been beaten into a slumber and Croyly lay dead. The Ironfist plan had worked like clockwork. The Soren was put into a cell so deep in the Citadel that it is said to be closer to the end of the realm than the surface. The other five had been thrown in jail for a week for fighting the “proper authority” all of most of which had been given the job of town guard only an hour before the brawl. Croyly had no family, so the only ones to fight for the crime of his murder were the Squashers and Bryrgar.

The Ironfist were able to prove to the king of a moment in battle where no one knew where Soren was. Soren claimed he and Croyly had been over a hill fighting Orcs, but Croyly was his only witness. The gold shown to King Harbromm had markings from the city of Cathyr in Dambrath. A place well known for its Drow history. The king did not believe Boerin, but was forced to accept the story for they had proof, and the boy’s side had none. One of the Ironfist went as far as to name the Drow, Tlir Der’Noth.

The king ordered the Squashers to stay within the Citadel until the extent of this could be gathered. An insult that Tarin and the Squashers could not stand. In the following days every member of the Squashers began to get into fights in the inns. Everywhere they went to drink an Ironfist would be there. To say fights broke out constantly would be an understatement. Boerin convinced the king to keep the Squashers locked up in their barracks until the extent of their corruption could be found.

One night Boerin came to Bryrgar alone and gave him a choice. If Bryrgar would leave Citadel Adbar now and forever, he would tell the king that the corruption was only Soren. If he stayed and fought for his father and friend, “Well, I already have other proof to link your father to Soren’s acts.” Bryrgar was filled with a rage that was beyond anything he had ever known. Bryrgar pulled a dagger from his belt and was about to attack Boerin when Boerin calmly said, “Go ahead, kill me boy. That will seal your fate and the stupid Squashers too.”

Confused and desperate to help his father and friend he agreed to the terms. Knowing deep down what was called for. Bryrgar Stonefist was about to set out on a journey to prove the innocence of his friend and father. He knew where to start too. Tarin had once told him that the best lies are told with a little truth. So, if the Ironfists had a Drow name and gold from Dambrath, odds are there is the place to start. The next morning Bryrgar headed out of the Citadel for what may be the last time. He was no fool though. He camped about a day south of the Citadel for a week. At that time his brother came and met him to tell him that the Squashers have all been returned to normal duty and were beginning to be treated fairly.

Armed with the idea that Boerin was going to hold up his end of the deal, at least for now, he headed out for Silverymoon in hopes of finding a guide at least as far a Waterdeep. There he found renewed hope when a Dwarf named Tharn Orcslayer came to him and announced he was an old friend of Bryrgar’s father. Tharn arranged for Bryrgar to travel with a caravan to Waterdeep, and provided him a letter to give to a mage named Gritho Thiden. The letter would be honored and Gritho would provide a portal to Eartheart.

The journey to Waterdeep went smooth, with only minor skirmishes with orcs and one large wolf attack. Once in Waterdeep he easily found Gritho Thiden. Gritho said he would be happy to help but the cost for the portal was great, and while he knew Tharn, he did not know Bryrgar. He then told Bryrgar of a local merchant that would give him a good deal on his armor and shield. Determined to get to Dambrath he sold his armor and shield (each with his family crest on them) and purchased some locally made armor at a discount to continue his journey. Upon returning to Gritho with the needed funds, Gritho took him to a sewer entrance and then through a series of tunnels that came out to a room with a shining blue portal.

Bryrgar thanked Gritho for his help and stepped through the portal, right into the middle of a battle in what turns out to be the middle of nowhere. While ducking a great sword and dodging a pike, Bryrgar came to realize just how set up he was. He fought his way out of the battle that apparently did not mind if he was there or not, and headed off to the west in search of a town.

Character sheet: Bryrgar Stonefist [Shield Dwarf Cleric of Clangeddin Silverbeard]

Cause of death: Bought the farm.

Posted by Jim on September 7, 2004, 19:14

Must have gone the wrong way

I walked west for several hours, my confusion about where I was only deepened. I was able to run into several farmers, mostly human, each one seemed to give me a different name for both this place and who was in charge. Strangely enough I don’t think any of them really cared.

Finally I reached a small town, hamlet really. Taking a look around, my throat dry, I decided to go to the nearest bar and get some thinking done. I took a good look around and noticed there was only one bar. One bar, this is uncivilized! Why the amount of different ales alone can not be held in one building. That is when I realized I was in one of the Nine Hells. I have heard of them, in detail from a handful of old warriors, although this does not look like any of their descriptions.

Well faced with continuing to walk or to go into this only bar, I did the only sane thing. Moments later while drinking back the first of a few, really weak, local ales I tried to strike up a conversation with the bartender. He told me the name of the town, but I decided not to remember, the next person will just have another name anyway. He did say that most of this area is simple farmers, and was asking if I was here to cause problems. I looked at my axe and promised him that the axe is not here for the farmers, and that I was a simple traveler just trying to find Dambrath.

The bartender laughed at me, and said you can’t get there from here. He went on to offer me some food and a room for a fair price, both of which I accepted. After finishing the meal at the bar, I decided to sit and do some thinking. I know where I want to go and what I want do, but now I realize that I may not be skilled enough to do it. My task may take far more time than I originally thought. How long must I let my friend sit in a cell, and how long will he be safe there?

I may have to find help, but I have not run into any dwarves here, and after discovering the true ruthlessness of some of my brethren, I feel I must begin to rethink my blind acceptance of the good will of dwarvenkind.

At least I do not have to go through my misery without entertainment, as I drink I become aware that other people have come into the bar. At first the halfling and gnome meant nothing to me, until the barbarians came in. A male and female barbarian of dark skin. Now, being no stranger to having fun or the antics of my smaller friends, I knew trouble would soon be at hand. Just then a female half-elf came into the bar, while not known for their humor, she was in uniform. I welcomed her to my hell and we drank together in silence.

Moments later the potato projectiles began. I watched the first volley with the town guard, we both turned back around to our beers. That is until the giant potato man appeared behind the barbarians. Now I have seen many gnomes and their illusions, but by Clangeddin’s beard I could not see any signs of this being an illusion. Before any sense of fear of this creature could set in, humor did. The two barbarians were trying to salt and eat the thing. Then the gnome got up from her table and went over to dismiss her illusion, in typical gnomish style. She said she was banishing the great potato, as if she was saving the two would-be victims of her gag. At least it was an illusion. Anyway, the two barbarians were now a bit upset, not for being fooled, but because their food was gone.

Then the halfling began clapping and ordered a plate of potatoes to be delivered to the barbarians. As the situation began to dull, I turned the half-elf and reconfirmed to her and me that I am in one of the Nine Hells. In return, she bought me a round and said, “Well, at least you don’t have to drink alone.” Hmm, maybe this is not one of the Nine Hells; they do have ale.

The evening passed with little interruption and I went up to my room to get some sleep. Now I have been away from the Citadel before, but never for long, so I am trying to remember all the stories from the adventurers I have met. I decided to sleep against the door. This was the first thing I did right, but in hindsight, I now know to keep my armor near by, if not on. During the night I was jarred awake by the noise of a door smacking my skull. I grabbed my axe and opened the door, nearly doubling over from the stench from the undead human trying to come through my doorway.

I would like to say it was my trained battle skills that made me launch my attack on the creature, but I am not so sure it could not have been from repulsion that I have never felt before. Now I have attended all the training the clerics offered on fighting undead, and I would like to say I even stayed awake through most of them. Divan Bouldershoulder, who taught me everything I know of undead, had the most monotone voice ever to exist in the Realms. My brother and I took it as a contest; whoever fell asleep first had to clean the house for a week. And mind you, the winner would always do his best to make plenty of messes.

Oh, back to the creature. So there I was in my nightshirt and axe, fighting this undead human who came to my door in the middle of the night, what a sight. I let out a shout to Clangeddin and began swinging my axe. It took a bit longer than I expected, but I did fell the creature. Before I succeeded though I heard other creatures in the hall, attacking the other guests. Also there was a ringing of thunder, great first bad ale and undead, and now it is going to rain on me. Maybe I dismissed this from being a hell too quickly.

Weakened badly from my battle I quickly reached or my holy symbol and with a quick heal to keep me on my feat, I turned my holy symbol on the undead. At this point there were at least two that I could see, and at least one more still in one of the rooms fighting its surprised occupant. Now, I am not really sure if I said the words properly, as they came out on their own, not really from my concentration, but one of the foul beasts did turn and begin to run.

The second one in the hall was being slain by the big male barbarian, who it appears does not sleep in a nightshirt at all. Deciding quickly to not let that one foul being escape I leaped into the hall and down the steps in my fiercest rage. Well it would have been my fiercest rage if not for the female barbarian. She had joined me in chase, and, well, umm, let’s just say she does not wear a nightshirt to bed either. Never the less there was a job to do. Down the steps and into the street we went after it, even being joined by the second barbarian. We caught the creature a good forty paces from the door (dwarf paces) and began cutting the thing down. As the creature fell, we all became aware that there were many more of these creatures attacking the town.

Just then that female guard from earlier appeared with a handful of others, they said they were going to make a stand at the temple. At about that time the halfling and gnome joined us also. The gnome had a strange staff in her hand, it seemed somewhat familiar, from an old story, but never mind, there was work to be done. With a quick glance at the eyes of the male barbarian, I told the half-elf that we would buy the villagers as much time to escape as we could.

We rushed up to a spot between buildings that we could hold for a while and began the battle. The halfling stood behind us and put his bow to work. Quickly we were swarmed by the undead. The two barbarians seemed to hold their side of the street fine, so I thought I would try to turn these foul creatures. Time and time again I tried. Finally I had to stop, drained by the effort and the beating I was taking from the creatures. I held my side of the street, but at a cost of nearly falling to them. I heard a call to begin retreating to the temple and slowly we began to back up. We fought the foul things all the way. The barbarians had tossed some oil on the undead and once near the temple they shouted this to the guards. Quickly a torch flew over our heads and flames engulfed them.

Once inside the temple, we were lucky enough to have some acolytes put some minor healing on us. The barbarians, unlike any I had ever met, began introducing themselves to each of us. I like them, although I can not place why. Perhaps it is their spirit, not once did they seem to panic or abandon the fight to save these people. People that like I, they probably did not know.

The halfling was just buzzing about, well, he is a halfling. But he too stood by us. Maybe I will do my best to assume him not a thief. But he is a halfling. The gnome while she did not fight with us seemed to be doing her best to help the guards. I guess as an illusion caster, undead were out of her area.

We did our best to rest until morning. The undead banged on the doors and walls all night trying to get in. In a quick discussion, more a meeting of looks than words, the barbarians and I agreed to go out at first light and fight some more. There were no other clerics to be found in this temple, although one paladin was present.

Just before dawn the pounding ended and the undead began to withdraw. We opened up the main door and took a look around. All of the undead seemed to be headed in one direction. One of the guards pointed out that it was the direction of the graveyard. Feeling this our best chance, the group of us from the bar headed out. All but me headed after some of the trailing undead, me, I had grown tired of walking around in my nighshirt and longed for the feel of my armor. I returned to the bar and quickly gathered my things and got ready. Soon I joined my new friends on a small rise at the edge of the cemetery.

In the cemetery were dozens of undead and a handful of captured villagers. Divan never mentioned this, not that I remember at least. There appeared to be a main creature leading them, it went to the first villager and put its hands on the person’s head. Seconds later the person screamed and fell dead. I had had enough of this; I began walking down to the undead. I did think the others would join me, and at first the male barbarian did. Charzth I think he called himself.

Thinking us all following the same keg, as my father always called it, I charged past the first undead to get closer to the surviving villagers. I had no doubt that my new friend would at least keep the other undead off my back while I plowed my way to the villagers. In a few moments I realized how wrong I was, for I found myself a good ten paces from the villagers and surrounded on all fronts by the undead. Charzth was nowhere to be found and the two little ones had backed up on the hill. I had no clue to where the female, Nosila, might be. At least I did catch sight of the paladin and a few of the town guards at the top of the hill.

Things were not going well for me, I was badly wounded and there were only two villagers left. When I saw the main creature take the life from one of the last two I decided that I had to push through to save the last, no matter my loss. With every ounce of my being I broke through the enemies surrounding me, charged through two more undead and attacked the main creature. It shall die here or I do not deserve the name Stonefist.

I landed a good shot on the creature gaining its attention. Just then out of no where Nosila appeared behind it and cleaved into it with amazing strength. Then everything went bright green for a minute. When I could see again I was standing a few feet from Nosila and the one villager we had saved. All of the undead had collapsed to their former states. I stood there for a few minutes, woozy from the loss of blood and still confused by the bright green light.

We were joined by the rest of the group from the bar and the guards. They explained that when the main creature was slain, a bright green light came out of it (knew that part) and then it rose up and flew off in the direction of some ruins. I offered my services in returning the bodies to their proper resting spots, and I spent the rest of the day helping re-bury the dead villagers.

Something tells me that when I stop for the night and return to the bar, the others will be waiting there. And I would bet a small fortune that the two barbarians have not had enough of this story, nor have I. I have a mission of my own to complete, but I can not sway my feelings of saving a friend over the need of these villagers. Whatever happened here was from those ruins, and unless we do something, it will be back.

Posted by Jim on September 15, 2004, 12:08

Familiar Foes

After helping bury the local dead, a chore that took a bit of time, I was looking around and noticed that we did not have enough bodies to fill all of the graves. I asked about this to one of the townsfolk helping with the duties. Rigald, a local farmer, said that they were sure the missing ones were just destroyed by fire, or something.

Then I asked if every grave had emptied out, he was not sure. After a bit of thinking, a subject that did not suite Rigald very well, he pointed to a mausoleum and said that none had come from there. I decided to take a quick look then go and get some sleep.

Once I got near the crypt in question I began to feel a strange sensation, like the hair standing on the back of my neck. I had never felt this before, which made me more curious. Now, I had once been told by my father that when curious dwarves die, they come back as gnomes. Pushing the image of that out of my head I examined the door to the crypt for signs of it having been opened. To my surprise it had what looked like claw marks around the edges.

I grabbed hold of the door and swung it open. At that point I should have realized that no good would be found in this tomb. But hey, how bad could it be, a door to a mausoleum that was so old the townsfolk don’t know who is buried in it, and the door opens with barely any effort.

Once I opened the door I notice the floor covered with skeleton remains. Undaunted I went inside to see what else could be found. Now, the mausoleum was built against a hill, and this corridor went back a few feet. There at the end I found what made my hair stand on end, the holy symbol of Tiamat. After spitting on the ground and tightening my grip so tight on my axe that my fingers began to turn white, I back out of the crypt and shut the door. “This my friend will take a bit of rest and the help of our friends,” the gargoyle carving on the nearby tombstone did not respond to me. I patted the gargoyle on the head and went back to get some rest. It wasn’t that I was talking to the gargoyle, it just was some carved stone, which is the closest thing to a dwarf I have found in this smelly town.

Later that day, after getting some rest, I went up to the temple to ask some questions about this town. First let me say, it is no proper temple, but I once heard a traveler say “any port in a storm.” I talked to the paladin, who as it so happens, does not know nearly a single thing about this town, or area. After beating my head against the wall at the temple, I went back to the inn to get some more rest. I decide to sleep against the door again, partially because it helped me before, and partly because of what the paladin said.
I had told him I was going to get some sleep, he said, “What makes you think the dead won’t come after us again tonight?”

During the night the alarms did wail; quickly I was up armed and armored. Out the door I went, happily, the others from the inn were headed to the cemetery too. Most of them ran ahead of me. Only a new person was with me, well, him and a boy. The new person told me his name, and the boy’s; I am sure I will remember them if they survive this night.

The human male was asking me what was going on, I began to fill him in on why we seemed to be charging a cemetery. At least it seemed odd enough for him to ask; a real thinker this one is. Well, after getting the basic fact he began to slow his pace as if considering going the other way. I saw the look of doubt in his eyes and I took the opportunity to feed his fires a little. That is what Croyly always called it. I asked my new friend if that was a sword on his belt, then asked him if he wasn’t going to use it, there are some women around that could.

After that I had a hard time keeping his pace, especially with my chuckle slowing me down. Finally we arrived atop a small rise to see two guards and our other friends of the inn fighting a group of undead. In we went, both of us going to the side of the male barbarian who was about to be surrounded. The battle was fierce for they had us outnumbered and did not seem to mind dying.

After a bit I heard the thunder and again I was inspired. I pulled my silver holy symbol and held it high. It worked by golly, at least a little, some of them turned and fled. Another try yielded me no results, so I went back to turning them with my axe. If you hit them just right, one half turns to the left and the other to the right.

I heard calls of my friends, the male barbarian was off to my side and looking worse for ware. I finished the one I was fighting and ran over to put some of Clangeddin’s blessing on him. Then back to the fight. It was about that time when I heard a cry out from the far side of the fight, the female barbarian had been downed. Before I could make a move in that direction, her husband rushed by and picked her up. Before I could yell to bring her to me, he was gone over the hill.

Next thing I know I hear more cries for retreat. I begin telling everyone to go, I will slow them down. And as I began backing up, keeping the undeads’ attention on me. This worked until that new human ran in front of me. Darned fool had near to no armor and wounded to boot. Together we backed up, while he learned every curse word I know. The stubborn fool was trying to prove himself not a coward, probably for what I had said to him earlier.

I took it well, for a few seconds, then just yanked him by the collar and dragged him away from the danger. Finally he turned and ran to help the others. Then the male barbarian was back. Doing nearly the same thing as the last durn fool. I yelled; he smiled. I don’t think he understands big words.

Finally we got back to the temple and held up for the night. The gnome, Sprocket was very talkative. She gathered the group together from the inn and we shared the information we had gathered during the day. I believe that to save this town, we will have to bind together and go to these ruins they talked about.

The new human, RonyŠ or Ronye something— his child seems to be half dark-elf. When saving this town is all and done, I shall have to talk to this man, perhaps he may be able to help me on my journey.

We are doing our best to rest now. At first light we will be heading to the ruins, to the green light.

Posted by Jim on September 24, 2004, 17:30

Confounded Halflings

Things are a bit foggy, something is definitely wrong and I donít know what. There is this pounding in the back of my head and a ringing in my ears. I feel that I am alive, and awake, yet I donít have the energy to open my eyes. Slowly the aches and pains are registering. Oh yes, I was in a battle, but ... we lost.

Pushing through the cobwebs in my head I begin to do as I was taught as a pup; I began taking a physical inventory. Heart, lungs, eyes, ears, fingers and toes was the saying. The heart was easy; the pounding in my chest is still strong. I did my best to take a deep breath, only to have it cut short choking on the blood draining down the back of my throat. I think my nose has been broken. Canít seem to breathe through it either. Those were the big two.

Eyes, drawing my all of my strength I manage to get them open a bit. I see shapes moving around, all is fuzzy though. Definitely broke my nose. No matter— the dizziness should end and my vision return. Ears, oh they seem to be working the best. I can hear that durn fool halfling. There is something moving also, but I canít tell as to what. Fingers and toes, well that is odd. I can feel the pain in them but Ö crap! I am chained to a wall.

As my energy is returning I do my best to conserve it; I need to think. Finally the lich lifts my head up and informs me that he knows I am awake. I look around and find the entire party is chained to a wall. At least they are alive.

The lich goes on and tells us he has a job for us; I then go on to tell him where he can go. But for some odd reason the rest of the group is agreeing with him. I put it in simple terms that I will not go performing tasks for no lich. That is when the friggín halfling and human begin discussing how they can tie me up and take me with them. I was in rage then, oh if I wasnít chained to this wall I would teach them a thing or two about tying up dwarves.

Oh Great Silverbeard, now they are all in on it. Next thing I know I am tied and partially gagged, and to make matters worse the durn lich is laughing about it. He has put some spell on them to perform a task, and they figured out that once on the way, I wonít let them go alone. While doing my best to describe the pot of oil I am going to boil the halfling in, the three of them take me to town, then a boat! Oh Clangeddin, no dwarf deserves this!

The halfling, in an attempt to keep me from killing him, had mentioned that if we travel by boat, we can get farther quicker, and they can let me loose sooner. This will not be saving him from no woopiní though. Soon we were off and I was off to letting loose my feelings about this entire situation. That is when my littlest friend came to my aid, Widget. The little feller snuck behind me and began chewing the ropes that had me bound. In mere moments he had me loose, although I held the ropes together with my hands. Widget went back to his backpack/home. I may be angry, but I am not stupid, I will wait till we are closer to shore, less water that way you know.

Finally the party reached a spot where they thought they could go ashore, and durned me for acting a little too quick. But, I let the ropes loose and went for Roscoe. It took longer to get loose and to him then I had thought and he jumped in the water to get away. I turned to Nosila for help getting the ship to shore and she jumped out as well. Come to think of it, I was a bit over the top with the threats while I was tied up. No, they deserved every threat, tying a dwarf up and putting him on a boat were things unspoken, things that you just donít do.

At least Sprocket was clear headed, or just listening to Widget, but she guided us to shore— where I immediately went to chasing the wet Roscoe with my axe. Now I wasnít going to kill him, just a few well placed brain-dusters. He went up a tree and stayed, well I couldnít hit him, but this will have to do, so I sat at the bottom of the tree and began sharpening my axe.

I took the first watch once night fell— we shall need to keep a sharp eye out for we are very close to the town where demon thing is supposed to be. During second watch everyone was awoken by a spell of alarm that Sprocket had set. I was up and looking, Sprocket was up and looking, Nosila was up and on watch and looking, and Roscoe was up up, and looking. None of us saw anything.

Then it struck. From below Nosilaís feet came the mandibles of a ankheg, grabbing Nosila and heading back into its hole. These monsters my people know well, and unless we act quick we shall never see our friend again.

As the last of Nosila disappeared into the hole I ran and dove, luck was with us on this night as my dive landed me right on her side. Quickly I wrapped my left arm around her and tried to keep hold— these ankhegs can go quick. Then I alternated attacks on the beast and casting healing on her. After a good bit of fighting I decided to maybe slow the beast down a little so the others could catch up. With a smile on my face I summoned some help. Behind the ankheg a celestial badger answered my call. Oh, I wish my father was here to see the look on that beastís face when the badger bit into its back end.

The battle raged on for what I began to think was too long, then suddenly a great purple worm appeared behind us. As was to our luck Nosila had just broken free of the ankheg when the worm attacked. I told Nosila to get to the side and I would try to hold it off, she was in fact looking very worse-for-wear. I got one or two swings in before leaping to the side to avoid its bite. For some reason this beast seemed more interested in chasing the ankheg than the easy meal of Nosila and I; it just passed us by.

As the last of the worm passed I saw something strange, it had a banner on its rear. Damned her, while she may have chased off the ankheg, Sprocketís illusion almost made my heart stop. I was too tired and sore to do much about it. I gave her a few what-fors and accepted going back up to our camp.

Once back on the surface we decided to stay off of the ground. There was mention of climbing the trees and of getting back in the boat. I decided to combine the two— we hauled the boat onto land and tied it up like a fine hammock. We all climbed in and slept for the night, except for Sprocket who stayed up on watch, after telling us gnomes invented hammocks and boats.

Posted by Jim on January 28, 2005, 21:42