Day 14: A Night Of DefianceEdit
Character Review Notes: Emma was working at a graveyard.
As evening's light begins to fade, the group decides to camp out for the night. Jimmy decides to stay with the group for the night; leading to a chorus of defiance against parents from the males.
Day 15: On Slaves And BearsEdit
With the morning comes more scouting up along the Thordin River, Arcas throwing Jimmy into the air repeatedly.
A few hours later, a push-barge comes floating down the river, carrying 5 men; one of which is wearing a red and purple striped shirt, large hat with white feather (EL: Clearly the leader then). His compatriots are decidedly more 'dumb muscle' types.
Adea thinks it would be a good idea to join forces with these men to find the egg. As they wave the boat over, the group all get out and approach our party.
The man (EL: I'm just gonna go ahead and call him a Captain) approaches Arcas at first, and inquires how much he'd sell one of the ladies to them for. Arcas seems amenable, but a quick punch to the gut from Adea silences him.
Adea introduces themselves properly as demigoddesses; Emma inquires as to who the man is, but he deflects the question. When he presses on what Arcas' relationship to the ladies is, and finding the answer to be 'just friends', he suggests Arcas leave Emma and Adea in their hands, so that he can return to what he's more interested in. Arcas declines, declaring the man's actions to be shady.
The man, seeing that he's not going to get Arcas to leave, tells his crew to kill Arcas, but leave the women alive.
COMBAT: The Salty Dogs. 4 men charge into battle... 2 survive the first attack. The captain also falls.
Emma interrogates the survivor; he says he will set up a shrine to the 4 demigods (mistakenly adding Jimmy to The Pantheon); the bandits found the G.E. Nerule and have it back at their camp.
Jimmy, seeing all the dead bodies, decides to go home now.
The group assembles a pyre and burns the bodies of the pirates. The surviving bandit (Johnathon) and the party get back on the boat, and start pole-barging their way up.
A ways up Thordin River, Johnathon parks the barge and then starts leading the party inland. He mentions that there are quite a few (30) bandits in camp; a direct assault may not be the best of ideas.
The idea is struck upon that Arcas should challenge the bandits to become the new bandit leader. Emma considers a plan to put the former leader's spirit back in his body and use it to get the Golden Egg of Nerual; Adea points out that they burned the body. Back to Plan A(rcas).
The camp seems to be a semiperminant establishment, with anti-cavalry measures and gates. As the alarm sounds and bandits begin to approach, Adea heralds the arrival of "Arcas, Demigod of Pain". One big strapping man (Hector) steps forward to accept the challenge, leading to a confrontation amid a circle of men. (EL: Arcas may also be bi, based on his reactions.)
COMBAT: The Pit of Challenge. Hector is big, strong, and carrying a two handed axe. He however is not wearing any armor, and Arcas' sword is sharp, quickly felling the mortal man.
As Arcas stands amid the circle, he is slowly recognised by the crowd as having bested their champion. An older man who bears no arms emerges then, identifying himself as Hothar, and his job as personal assistant. Arcas immediately calls for beer and women. A dozen slave women appear.
Adea tries to insert herself into the situation and get Arcas to immediately free the women. When he hesitates, Adea gets very, very angry, her hair bright red. She even whips the chain about her waist at Arcas.
Emma inserts herself between her half-siblings, and suggests that they all go into the private room ( Where the egg is.....). Adea isn't diplomatic at the moment, and grabs Arcas' head to try and force the issue.
Arcas gets pissed off enough at Adea's actions that he storms off, leaving things in Adea's hands. The women are freed, much to the anger of the bandits... they run off from the camp, and run into Arcas, whom they begin following.
Adea and Emma discuss their situation, and decide they need Arcas to get the Golden Egg of Nerual.
Arcas meanwhile has spoken to the freed women, directing them towards the nearest town. Meanwhile, Adea and Emma catch up to the group. Adea is apologetic for losing her temper, and agrees to purchase 100 beers for Arcas in redemption; an additional 10 if he goes back to get the egg.
Returning to the bandit camp, Arcas is confronted by one of the bandits about freeing their women. Arcas manages to turn the crowd by suggesting getting new women. This makes Adea a bit sick, and earns Adea and Emma catcalls and filthy looks as it's suggested they be the first two. Arcas, playing the role (EL: I'm gonna just assume that), says that he gets first dibs on all women, including those two; the bandits agree to this, as Hector had a similar policy. Arcas uses this as a reason to take Adea and Emma to 'his' tent.
The leader's tent, understandably, is quite well appointed, with a cache of weapons and items, a large square bed, and a treasury in the basement. After dismissing the assistant, the girls go down into the treasury. Inside they find two bears chained to the walls, and a treasure chest filled with coins, and a golden egg sat atop the coins.
Emma and Adea (after some maths) come up with the idea of attaching Adea's chain to Emma's scythe to hook the treasure chest and scoop it back towards them without getting in range of the bears.
Figuring the bandage would not hold the weight of a treasure chest, they aim for the Golden Egg of Nerual instead. Succeeding in pulling it off of the treasure pile, they are a little thwarted by the topography of the room, causing the egg to roll to off to one side. One of the bears goes over and sniffs the egg, and while Adea and Emma start to discuss things, it picks the egg up in it's mouth.
During more discussion, the bear swallows the Golden Egg of Nerual. A few moments later, the bear begins to... flicker. Adea calls for retreat. As they back out, Emma sees that the bear has grown to at least 300% size, and it's fur is now black and grey and white.
Waking Arcas from his nap the three prepare for the approaching giant bear.
MINOR COMBAT: Itsaburr. A couple of mostly ineffective whaps with a whip, the party turns and runs outside to get reinforcements.
Arcas calls the bandits to arms, but when a 15 foot long bear rips its way out of the leader's tent, they as a group turn tail and scatter for the trees.
- Recap from EtoileLion on reddit. Editorial notes are theirs.