Session 2 - H or H - Covered in the blood of their enemies

Arkobla Conn

When last we left Hadrathus, Raz, Lady Maja, Ajonga, Belyara and Abaddon, they had just saved three women from death by burning. They slew 11 of the twelve hooded ruffians harrassing the townsfolk and then were forced to kill the local priest when he was caught in a sorcerous trap and turned into a monstrous beast. To finish the day, they were approached by a herald proclaiming that an army was preparing to march into the town. By decapitating the herald, they were giving the message to these invaders that they would not be bullied into action. The townsfolk, however, cringed in fear and were forced to wonder if they had traded one group of tyrants for another.


Hadrathus, with years of soldiering under his belt, took command of the defense of the town. After assessing the many ways into the hamlet, he decided to concentrate defense on the stone church. Meanwhile, Belyara and Ajonga requested and received permission to do some scouting.

The pair of them followed the tracks of the emissary east, back to a north / south path. At this juncture, they found that another horseman came up from the south, met the emissary who had come down from the north and then returned south again. South, toward Koth was expected. But north, from the self same Ophir where the town was located was not.

Following the tracks north, the pair eventually came across a large vineyard and farmstead. There, the pair found a hidden sentry armed with a bow in a large tree outside the farmhouse. Skirting around to the opposite side, they found another sentry posted in the farmhouse window. Noticing, however, that both sentries would be unable to see beyond a small addition to the farmhouse, the pair snuck forward and were able to listen to a conversation (in Ophirian). There, they discovered that there was no army, but that two dozen mercenaries would be coming north from Koth to attack the town. It was clear that some kind of land grab was taking place, as the merchant inside was funding the mercs. An ominous mention of a person named 'Milantes' raised the hackles on both their necks before they retreated to inform the others of what was going on.

Returning to town, the pair informed Hadrathus, Raz and the others of the mercenaries. Hadrathus was confident in the defenses they had built, but also understood that two dozen mercenaries could still pose a threat if they dictated the situation. Making a bold decision, he told the group that they would find a place on the approach to the town to conduct an ambush, using the church as a fall back position if required.

Moving quickly, the group found a gentle bend in the track that was crossed by a very shallow stream. On either side, hillocks rose, but only one provided a steep enough defensible position. On the slopes, the group laid logs and other natural obsticles. In addition, they dug a hole in the shallow stream and laid caltrops within it and also dug another hole beyond the stream. Covering it up, the group retreated up the hill to hide in the foliage. Belyara, hoping to attain some flanking situations, decided to hide in the thicket on the other side of the hill.

They were prepared to wait for days, but only three hours were needed. The Kothian mercenaries marched in four units. The first three were six regulars and a leader, the forth was just a leader and 4 regulars.

The soft gurgle of the stream and a Jayhawk in the distance were the only sounds that greeted the mercs as they marched down the track. Approaching the stream, the leader's horse (only the leaders were horsed) stepped right over the stream and placed it's hoof directly on the covered hole beyond. His fall, surrealistically slow, was counterpointed by the pair beyond him stepping into the water and crying out in pain after finding the caltrops. Then hell broke lose.

The slow motion of the first events broke away and time snapped to sudden, jerky motions. Arrows flew from the group on the hilltop as the mercs below began their charge. They were slowed by terrain and obsticles, but bloodthirsty and determined. Even so, the arrows claimed a great many before they reached the small blockade behind which stood Hadrathus and company.

Still, vision was like a snapshot of time, with frenetic movement between where if you were not focused, you could lose control of the situation. Here, one man flew backward, an arrow lodged in his cheek. There, three arrows sprout from the torso of another man. Here, a man creeps over a log and moves to flank, there, two more have gained access to the top of the hill.

Arms rose and fell as bows were eventually abandoned for swords and the work of killing became close and personal. Everyone was now in melee, even Belyara who was discovered after performing some devistating attacks on the vangaurd who had turned away from him. Still, he faced only two mercs while the rest attacked up the hill, slowly gaining ground and gaining a flanking position on Lady Maja who held the right.

Tendons, sinew, skin and bone were cut as axes, spears, swords and other instruments of death stabbed, tore, or sliced their way through fragile humans. Even the armor worn by the mercenaries was torn asunder as impossibly huge holes appeared when weapons connected with such force as to knock men backward.

As the forth and final leader of the mercenaries fell, the few who remained gave up. Two were able to flee, but the remaining three threw down their weapons and fell to their knees pleading for mercy. Before them, like gods of warfare, stood 6 people covered in the blood of their enemies. Blood and viscous gore dripped from weapons and armor like water on a rainy day. Minor cuts oozed their own blood, but they stood practically unhurt, breathing hard but alive and vibrant in their victory. Twenty four were not enough to bring down these, and that was a lesson hard learned by the mercanaries from Koth.

In the days that followed, the group found that the merchant had fled his farmstead and gone south. No mention of a 'Milantes' was ever heard from again, other than from the three prisoners who named him a sorceror of Stygia. Leaving the prisoners fate to the town, the group decided to leave Ophir and travel east to Zamora. Little did they know it, but soon they would find themselves in Shadizar...
"Tales as tall as mountains begin with hillocks of truth. In the oncoming battles, our heroes will find themselves outnumbered and flanked. They will find themselves at sever disadvantages and hurt. But there will be success " -Arkobla Conn

SUCCESS! Under the leadership of Hadrathus, we took a step forward by utilizing all of our skills and fighting as team.
It was a great time! We hewed them down like ripened Wheat! In all fairness, Raz was the author of the ambush! I must have rubbed off on him!

After that, it was a complete group effort. Maja held our right flank, Ajonga the left. Hadrathus, Raz, and Abaddon held the center. Bel a flanking position across the road. The enemy squad leader who fell from his horse had only seconds to ponder his fate when he was peppered by 5 or 6 arrows. 4 or 5 more died before they could reach our barricade. The Enemy probed our left and center and ran into a meat grinder. They then shifted to our right perhaps thinking Maja would prove a weaker foe. Not so! Though eventually flanked, she held her own, dealing death, until her comrades could redress their lines and once again present a united front. By that time they had become completely demoralized and lacking leadership fled or surrendered. It was a glorious victory!

In all 21 of 24 KIA with only Bel taking any considerable damage. He was lucky only 2 went after him! Being a "free spirit" is going to be the death of him!
This was one of our best battles yet! A difficult situation was made easier because we worked as a team. That is something we have not done up to this point.
Session MVP nominees
Bel 76 points of damagd dealt in a round.
Maja Holding the flank against a determined foe