A Muted Feast

Maruc’s broad grin touched his lips again. “Don’t worry about Nicolai’s ashes, he’ll keep.”

“Gregor, I see you haven’t mentioned further sightings of the goblins. This leads me to believe you came here by a circuitous route, deliberately and wisely avoiding them. Else you would have arrived here before we had, had you fled before them.” observed Miklos, “The pattern of advance is simple and expedient.”

Miklos continued, “Logic therefore dictates one course of action is to follow their path of destruction. If anything, we shall discover where they mustered originally. There may be clues we find on the way. And we still have no idea of the origin of the token.”

“And we may yet meet a Vyalian elf who might provide more information,” added Maruc. “Assuming that Mistress Fyodoryll here is not a common example of the local elven population.”

Stephan couldn’t hide his contempt when addressing Fyodoryll. “Well, she-elf, are you one of these Vyalians? Or do you know how we can contact them?”

“How do you contact the Vyalia? You don’t,” she replied, laughing. “Those ones keep to themselves.”

“Following the gobs’ war path backwards may yield information,“ agreed Stephan. “We could still make a trip to High Forge to see if any news of the attacks has arrived there and see to Feldard’s promise.”

Again looking upon Fyodoryll with bitterness, Stephan asked, “Did the gobs who sold to you say anything? You’ll be doing yourself a favor to tell us all you know. Where were they headed? Did they mention their orders?”

“They went back to their tribehome, I suppose,” she replied. “It was a quick transaction, and I didn’t ask.”

“Since no one recognises the tower emblem and we are blessed with folk with a wide knowledge of the Dymrak, I can only assume no one is aware of any ruined or long abandoned towers within the forest?” Miklos paused a second looking around the room. “Then this does not refer to a local structure.”

With his prisoners now in the hands of the Sukiskyn, and the horse-trader elf unwilling or unable to give up any further information Feldard looked over the rough drawn map. He couldn’t understand why the humans and elf thought traveling AWAY from the goblins current trail would help any. They had been heading southeast. So southeast is the direction the party should go—and the dwarf was blunt about stating so. “Goblins are not devious, they aren’t overly smart. It’s not like they would think to double back on their tracks or change directions without an obstacle being in their way. Their lair lies to the southeast. If chasing them is what you folk think we need to do.. then that is the direction we need to go. Hasan can pick up their trail further along. It’ll likely be more visible after the rain. What with the mud and all.”

“Into the heart of the forest is surely our path,” agreed Hasan. “Our only choices now are whether to retrace the line of attack, along the northern outskirts of this wood, take up the trail from Fyodoryl’s trading post, or perhaps we could travel down the river, which also seems to come from the forestheart. That may be our fastest way, though ambush again would be a danger. Still, with a speedy boat, that might be our fastest path. I am comfortable with any of these paths.”

While the group discussed their next move, the Sukiskynians were busy preparing a feast. Traditionally, a great meal would be served in the hall to welcome guests to the homestead. Though the group was saddened at the loss of Taras, they were determined to show their gratitude to the newcomers, and celebrate their own survival. A large pig was roasted, and various family members endeavoured to provide entertainment. Mash sang. Kuzma told stories of old Traladaran legend. The women danced. Gregor and his lumbermen told jokes.

Pyotr took the group on a quick tour of the clan’s treasures. The large, ornately carved antique chair of the clanhead. A stuffed eagle and great dire wolf’s head. A gold-plated hunting horn. And two great tapestries. One depicted wild, running horses, and the other was very old, with a large, woven colorful geometric pattern.

After the food was consumed, Traladaran ale flowed freely amongst the family and their guests. Despite their attempt at putting their troubles aside for the night, discussions shifted back to the goblins. Pyotr made it clear that everything the family owned was available to the group—provisions, equipment and, of course, the horses obtained from Fyodoryll.



Filed under D&D, Dungeons & Dragons, rpg

8 responses to “A Muted Feast

  1. Maruc: 10xp+10xp
    Miklos: 10xp+10xp
    Feldard: 10xp+10xp
    Hasan: 10xp+10xp
    Stephan: 10xp+10xp

    Maruc: 18,540/24000
    Miklos: 18,615/20000
    Feldard: 18,580/34000
    Hasan: 17,695/32000
    Stephan: 17,530/32000

  2. Stephan

    “Thank you Pyotr. It will help much if we can use some of the horses and resupply our arrows and such.”

    Stephan, assisted everyone with gathering food and arms (chiefly arrows and bolts) and loading all onto the horses.

    “We’ll take only what horses we need, of course. The rest can be used to replenish the Sukiskyn coffers.”

  3. Feldard

    The dwarf wasn’t pleased at having to backtrack to the Sukiskyn holdings, but the ale did make the return a bit more palatable.

    The tour of the Sukiskyn clan treasures was brief. Feldard’s own family treasury held much, much more. But there were a few items to which he showed some interest.. the gold-plated hunting horn… and that patterned tapestry. It intrigued him. “Where did this thing come from? It looks rather antique.”

    When discussions after dinner turned to back to the goblins, Feldard listened in. The realization that the others would want to continue on via horseback prompted the dwarf to comment. “Such fine horses would only attract attention and make our party even more a target. We should continue on by foot.”

  4. Stephan

    “Aye, Feldard, there is truth in what you say. But the horses would afford us much needed speed. Horses are common in these parts and having such should not attract undue attention. Of course, if you speak of horse thieves, that’s another matter.”

  5. Hasan

    “I don’t think we’l need the horses, either,” chimed in Hasan. “Not that I won’t take one when, err, if it is needed for our next step. But now we will have to penetrate the goblin lair, and horses will not help in that. Too much time has been lost. The goblins will have returned to their homes and will be ready to defend them after the losses they suffered here. We will need to strike decisively when we have the chance, for surely all the Dimrak knows we are here. But come, tonight let us rest, and on the morrow, we off as dawn breaks.” And Hasan went to bed.

  6. Stephan

    “I will defer to Hasan’s assessment of our needs in tracking the gobs.”

    Stephan turned to his brother, “Your offer is most gracious and, as Hasan says, if our pursuit of the destruction of evil in Dymrak would benefit from it, we may return to accept your offer.”

    Before leaving in the morning, Pyotr proffered the Sukiskyn family ring back to Stephan. “That was a quickly fulfilled oath, little brother!” He said with a smile.

    “Nay, Tumish”, Stephan used the Traldarian term of brother endearment, “I’ll not take the ring back till your household is restored in a gob-free Dymrak. There’s much work yet to be done!”

    “But brother, your pig-headedness is showing again. Surely you can see you deserve your ring back.”

    “Again, nay, Tumish. My heart refuses it given the situation in Dymrak. It’s absence, and this scar, will keep me on task.”

    Satisfied but perplexed, Pyotr pocketed the ring. “I’ll keep it safe till you achieve your goals. And I’m sure you will, Tumish!”

  7. miklosdostevar

    Miklos enjoyed the distraction of the treasures of the clan. It enabled him the divorce himself, for a while, from the pressing dangers he’d found himself in. “Facinating histories, Pyotr. Thank you.” He joined the other discussing the next move.

    “I was wondering how we could track at speed. But horses can be looked after. All we need is a loyal ostler.” Miklos’s eyes strayed to Matvey, then to the women folk and dimissed the idea. “Perhaps not. We cannot delay our pursuit either way. The concensus is we follow the trail of destruction to the Southeast.”

  8. Maruc

    Maruc bid the over generous clan fairwell as he joined the party outside the hastily constructed corral. “Nice family Stephan.” He crushed the pang in self pity and envy. To have loving bothers and sisters? A mother? All of Maruc’s memories were ash and ruin blown away on the wind. Halav had filled the emptyness. But He felt remote. This clan was real and urgent, troubled and strong. Bah! Halav was testing him again.

    He marched beside the confident steps of the dwarf rying the keep his emotions of his face. Grinning, always grinning. Thats what Maruc always did…

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