Pathfinder Campaign - Time of Heroes

The Gnome who cried Tree

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his chapter is one of mystery and mayhem for nothing seemed to be as it first appeared. We had be sent on our way towards the brigands camp in order to drive them away from the vast metropolis of Quaint Hollow. During our travels we happened upon one of the many lumber mills it happens to offer. There were given a task to investigate the disappearances of some of the lumberjacks. Suspicion fell on the local bars and the unspoken desire for women's clothing, but we each knew something more sinister was afoot. We delved into the forest with confidence that we would find the men.

We reached the clearing within a few short hours and proceeded to search for clues. With our amazing perception and deductive reasoning we discovered that the local elms appeared to have been calved with the faces of the missing victims. Clearly the work of the culprit! I took it upon myself to take a sample of the tree back to the lumber mill for closer inspection. However this would be no easy feat, for when I stabbed at the tree, it seemed to come alive around me and I was dragged into it’s leafy bows.

The party quickly assembled to aid their stricken comrade. I was without injury due to my knowledge of tree anatomy ( “Would you like to axe me any questions” – TSChippedstone) and was slowly working my way free. They however fought valiantly. Without hesitation, Nyix drew her bow and began to fire arrows at the beast, Carak quickly placed a spell on our druid causing him to grow taller than the largest oak. From this the tree fell with ease as Cullen swung his weapons, yelling “Timber” for the world to hear.

The tree however was not as it appeared as mentioned at the start of this tale. It was in fact a mimic. Little is known about these dastardly fiends, aside from their ability to change their appearances, but I expect more will be known soon, with my upcoming book “And then the table laughed”. Unfortunately the lives of the lumberjacks could not be saved for they had already been devoured. Their memories will live on forever though , through the craftsmanship of Nyix’s new longbow. I hear it is of exceptional quality, providing Nyix with a keen advantage in battle.

As this mystery was solved we continued on our path to the bandit camp. As it was over a day away we stopped to camp under the stars. It was a beautiful clear night and as we each took watch, we remembered our home, far behind us. Always in our hearts, never forgotten. A memory in each star that shone above us.

The night would unfortunately not continue to be as pleasent as expected, for as we let our guards down, we were approached by a shadowy figure. His only companion, a wolf. He approached slowly, his eyes glistening from his hood. Darkness surrounded him despite the clear night sky. His wolf bared teeth, clearly an enemy. Despite my objections,  my allies allowed him to approach and join our camp for the night. He went by the name “Bjørn”, an unnatural name in this area of the world. I believe it to be an alias of some sort to cover up his lone wolf nature. I suspect he is more of a Keith or Brian. No matter for his fate was sealed on that night he came to us.

Despite his appearances and abrupt nature, he agreed to travel with us in order to aid us in the defeat of the brigands. I did not trust him. He was dark, mysterious, and yet, somewhat handsome. For a human that is. He made sure to stay at the head of the group, from there he would be unable to stab us in the back.

We reached the camp after a day's travel and there discovered it was less of a camp and more of a small town. The population of bandits much have been in the hundreds but we were not afraid. This was nothing compared to the mighty battle we had fought just weeks before. We stealthily took position around the camp. Myself and Nyix bravely went straight for the main building. Together we would take down the leader and hopefully the small army would disband in fear and confusion.

Cullen and Carak agreed to take down the bandits as they approached with Bjørn acting as support. We them struck in unison. Creating a surprise attack on the enemy. Cullen took down bandits in every direction, 1, 5, 10 bandits dead with his swings. .They fell like weak saplings. His might did not go unnoticed. Suddenly from the command centre burst a ball of flame, its direction aimed right at Cullen. Within moments he was down, his skin singed and his clothes torn. He gasped for breath as the battle raged around him. He would die with honor. Carak rushed to his fallen friend. He kneeled next to Cullen and held  him in his lap. Cullen begged him to leave. To not let his sacrifice be in vain but Carak refused. “I can’t leave you here brother, We have been through too much for it all to end here” he cried.

“It will not end here” Cullen whispered “I will be here….always”. He raised his hand lightly to Carak’s chest.  Quickly his hand fell and Carak buried his head into Cullen’s chest before raising it again in release of a mournful shout. “Noooooooooooooo, Oh Gods, No!”

His God’s however were in a favourable mood today and heard Carak’s pleas. Upon hearing him they gave him the ability to heal Cullen’s wounds. Cullen rose off the ground in a shine of light. His burns vanished and his strength returned.

In the meantime Nyix was doing what she did best. She had climbed the roof of the command centre and was aiming a shot upon the caster of the ball of flame. Silent, deadly, she lined up the shot. The world fell silent around her and all that now mattered was her target. She let the arrow fly free and with but a slight whistle through the air, it hit. The caster was down. The next target would be the bandit leader. A giant opponent. His mace alone measuring almost 3 of me. I climbed out of the shadows to confront the enemy, I hoped for a diplomatic solution but expected to be smashed to dust. The unexpected happened though. He turned his mace on the caster and surrendered to me. We would later discover that Glut, the bugbear, was in fact an avid collector of my books. In agreement for signed copies for life and aid for his tribe, he would give up the bandit life and would instead join Quainthollow as a friend. Despite his appearance I knew he could be trusted. I was even warming up to Bjørn. My judgement had been off twice in one day, I suppose being wrong a third time was expected.

After a day's trek we found ourselves in the fiends from the night past. It was time to rest. Cullen and Carak joined in a drink, while Nyix spent the evening staring into the flames of the fire. The thoughts of the other world occupying her mind. I however decided that now was the time for rest and excused myself from the group. I slept peacefully until a sudden pain enveloped my body.  I let out a deafening scream as above me stood the body of a deformed wolf. It’s fur matted, it’s limbs disjointed, almost to appear like that of a man but clawed and dangerous. I rolled away to avoid being further hurt as my friends approached to see the commotion. Glut was my saviour that evening. At seeing my blood being drawn he entered an uncontrollable rage and smashed the creature to the ground. It would not rise again. Looking at the body, it’s figure had changed. Rather than being the distorted monster from being it had transformed into Bjørn. I knew I was right not to trust him. I now wonder on what exactly caused the insanity we saw from him. Was it from the previous battle and his mind being scarred from stress? Maybe the caster had left her mark upon him? Maybe what I actually saw was his wolf from earlier in the day but with sleep and darkness I got confused. I need not worry on it all though. We now head back home for a hopefully uneventful few days.

 

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