Bloodheads

“You see it, Feldard,” shouted Hasan. “Watch the bite,” he muttered, as he charged forward, swinging the great blade taken from Vlaak. It was much larger than that to what he was accustomed. Nevertheless, the blade swung through the air with a lust as great as the Feldard’s ax, the two weapons making a glorious harmony as the hacked into the spider.

Ludo turned towards the commotion and saw Hasan and Feldard hotly engaged in melee with the biggest spider he had ever seen. He dropped the book he was holding, drew his sword and charged into the melee holding his torch in front of him yelling to Stephen for assistance.

Hearing the commotion across the room as well as Ludo’s yell for help, Stephan lunged into the fray. The four companions soon had the wicked spider cornered and wounded. Stephan was enjoying this. “We’ll soon be done with this beast!” he yelled to the others. His words had a hollow ring, however, since the creature, despite wounds, moved with incredible speed through the dense webbing and disappeared.

“Where did it go?!”, Stephan said with obvious alarm in his voice. An eerie quiet fell over the chamber. The party watched the thick webs on the ceiling. A slight scratch from above and to the left caused them all to jerk their heads in unison to see what it may be. Then, with all eyes pointed east, the widow silently dropped from behind, landing on Stephan’s back.

“Aaarrrrgh!”, Stephan whirled trying to get the thing off his back. Despite its size, the spider was light. Stephan could feel its coarse hairs against his neck. The fangs lunged but his movement through it off for a split second. The bite drove deep into his pack.

With Stephan spinning about like top, Feldard, found himself suddenly a few feet behind the human warrior as the spider bit into the pack. With grunt, Feldard ran forward, swinging his axe in an upward angled stroke to bite deep into the red hourglass mark at the spiders underbelly which was clearly visible from it’s position atop of Stephen.

The spider thrashed suddenly, dropping from Stephan’s pack, it’s legs curling instinctively underneath it. “Finish it now, before it can recover.”

Turning in a rage, Stephan gripped the hilt of his sword with two hands; the blade pointed down in the battle-field execution position. The motion was fluid and rapid; the veteran’s muscle-memory from myriad battles coming into play. Bending his knees and clenching his back, Stephan thrust the sword clean through the widow’s abdomen and into a crack between the flagstones. A sickly fluid erupted from the cut in the spider’s thick hide. Those nearby instinctively turned to avoid getting the substance in the eyes or mouth.

Stephan jerked his blade free from the mess and took two step back, not fully believing the spider would not yet leap to the attack. After he was assured of the creature’s demise, he eyed his sword tip. “I’ll have to work on that a bit. Lucky at least that I hit between the flagstones.”

Stephan gave the dwarf a brief inspection. “Nice axe work, there. Good to have around.”

Ludo wiped the spider goo off his tunic, “this place is fill of surprises” he muttered to no in particular. “The books seem to be records of births and deaths of the people that used to live here, there is nothing of value here. I suggest we move on but with a little bit more caution”, he said looking at Hasan and Feldard in turn.

The dwarf met the rogues’ gaze steadily then gave a snort. “Yes, of course… because an excess of caution would have prevented all these creature-guards from attacking.” The dwarf gave his blade quick wipe then turned back to the door to the south and opened it striding through, ready to take on whatever came next.

Ludo looked on at Feldard as he moved through the door, shrugged his shoulders and kept his tongue, he figured that a retort would do more harm than good.

Maruc barely glanced across the library to see the melee ensuing. Only toward the end of the fight did he make out the poor unfortunate that had leapt out to brave the party. Halav protects, he mumbled to himself and drew another book. More communal records.

He sighed and stalked over to the balled arachnid. “Doubtless Miklos, font of all knowledge, will tell us species, gender and the names of its parents. Ahh, here he comes now.”

The mage looked over the armoured priest’s shoulder. “Its a black spider. What more do you want to know?” he snapped,”The state of its health? Give Ludo a few moments alone with it and he have its glands out.” He eye’d the wily rogue. “And this, he said expansively at the room in general, is a waste of paper, who wants to know whose uncle is whom’s? I’m no genealogist.” Frustrated he turned to the elf. “And what makes you think that he,” he gestured the the priest, “would know anything not written in his own language? This stuff is old Traladaran if I’m any student.”

“Traladaran you say? That would surprise me,” the elf looked curiously at the mage. “These ancients would have been a strange people then. The statues in the throne room down were common animals, just a dog. What man would worship a creature so unlike him? To see power in a great dragon or a mighty lion is not uncommon, but to see that in an ordinary cur? No, I think this tower belonged to some race that wasn’t human.”

The elf walked beside the mage, musing on the origin of the strange tower the walked. They exited the room, leaving the thief to his autopsy.

It was quickly determined that both exits opened out into the night. The southern exit opened into a plaza covered with overgrown foliage. The plaza led to the main entrance of the tower, two impressive tall bronze doors. One of the doors was open, and five Bloodhead hobgoblins stood guard inside. Their eyes gazed out into the night, not expecting to see anyone approach from the old library, a known spider lairs, and so they did not immediately notice the dim presence of torchlight.

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13 Comments

Filed under D&D, Dungeons & Dragons, rpg

13 responses to “Bloodheads

  1. 12:07pm, Moldain, the 21st of Thaumont, 1001AC
    Clear, dry, hot and windy.

    Maruc: 10xp+10xp combat
    Miklos: 10xp+10xp combat
    Feldard: 10xp+5xp+10xp combat
    Hasan: 10xp+10xp+10xp combat
    Stephan: 10xp+5xp+10xp combat
    Ludo: 10xp+10xp+10xp combat

    TOTAL:
    Maruc: 22,190/24000
    Miklos: 22,260/40000
    Feldard: 22,530/34000
    Hasan: 21,790/32000
    Stephan: 21,530/32000
    Ludo: 21,030/40,000

  2. Stephan

    Stephan silently readied his bow. Kneeling, he trained an arrow on the nearest Bloodhead. He was about to shoot but hesitated.

    In a bare whisper to Hasan, “We can circle back and attack from behind as well.”

  3. Feldard

    The dwarf glanced back to his companions at the sight of the hobgoblins. He overheard Stephan and nodded as he readied his crossbow and quick strapped his battlexe. “Be quick if you plan to do so we won’t remain out of sight long. I’ll count to 10, 10 times then distract them with a frontal assault.

    He waited for their assent before starting is quiet count.

  4. Hasan

    Hasan followed Stephan, curious at the human’s plan. When the fighter reached his favored shoot blind, the elf joined him in preparing an attack. Unlike the fighter, however, the elf cast a tiny gobule of sleep magic within the hobgoblins.

  5. Stephan

    Stephan nodded at Feldard as he started silently making his way with Hasan; counting as he went. They headed back through the library and main hall and to the door leading to the area behind the main tower doors and guarding hobgoblins. “Just like the siege of Castle Ramstein,” thought Stephan. He remembered a similar operation where he and a small party had to keep a steady count of time to achieve a coordinated attack. “Feldard must have done the same in the past,” he thought.

    At the door, Stephan kept track of the count. He and Hasan arrived at the door quickly–he still had 3 tens to count. The two fighters readied to barge through the doors behind the guards.

  6. Ludo

    Ludo was impressed with Feldards plan, he didn’t think Feldard was capable of anything except a frontal assault. Ludo put out his torch, placed it on the ground and readied his bow. When Feldard was ready – he attacked.

  7. Stephan

    Stephan was proud of his plan. He hoped the others would realize that the idea to circle around for a two-pronged attack was brilliant…and his. He couldn’t deny, however, Feldard’s contribution with the counting. Not that he wouldn’t have done the same himself but, after posing the overall idea, he waited to be sure there was consensus. The dwarf’s response was perfect. The demihuman signaled consensus not just by nodding but by furthering the plan.

    He only wished that the thief had decided to sneak back around with him and Hasan. He really thought it was the rogue’s bailiwick to stealth back.

  8. Feldard

    As the dwarf continued his quiet whispered countdown, he looked towards Maruc and the mage. The mage looked thoroughly drained. Feldard doubted the mage could conjure up anything more than a yawn at this point in their travels this eve, yet here they were about to go into yet another battle. The dwarf looked to Maruc and head-nodded towards the mage and held up a hand motioning him to stay back.

    It was a good idea. No need to risk their healer unnecessarily. Better to have him keep watch over the mage and guard their backs.

    The countdown was nearing the end.. the last count of 10.

    Feldard raised his crossbow and edged forward to get a better sighting on the largest of the hobgoblins.

    “5.. 6.. 7.. 8.. 9.. Ten!” He fired and dropped his crossbow, while pulling his axe and starting forward across the dark courtyard towards the open door.

  9. Stephan

    Always one to count down, Stephan felt an adrenalin surge as he got to the last few seconds.

    “5…4…3…2…”, he whispered the last numbers to Hasan and they listened for the sound of Feldard’s attack. The dwarf was on schedule! Stephan allowed the hobgoblins three seconds for their attention to be drawn to Feldard’s attack before bursting through the door.

    The the advantage of a rear attack, the human and elf made quick work of three of the Bloodheads. A fourth, sporting one of Feldard’s bolts lodged in his shoulder, realized the pinning attack and started to turn to run. But there was no where to run. Seeing Hasan and Stephan closing, he decided to run out the door only to be met by a deftly wielded dwarven axe.

  10. Ludo

    OOC – Oops sorry Stephen!

    ‘Twang’, an arrow from Ludo wizzed over Feldards head and hit the remaining Hobgoblin in the chest, moments before Feldards axe cleaving through the moonlight struck the Hobgoblin and finished off the creature. After the sudden chaos of battle, the silence of the night was deafening. Ludo placed the arrow he was about to draw to his bowstring back into his quiver and moved forward to search the Hobgoblin bodies for anything of value or or use.

  11. Feldard

    (yeah Sorry. Feldard wasn’t trying to steal Stephen idea. It was good idea – one that Feldard WOULDN’T have come up with – he is the frontal assault minded. Feldard was just giving them time to do what they’d already suggested to do)

    (oh and Maruc/Miklos – don’t think you have to do what Feldard suggests (ie remain behind) – Feldard is just being Feldard – thinking himself in charge LOL)

  12. Stephan

    (no real offense taken….just in character…I meant it just to be comic relief for us players)

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