Chapter 4: Hemway in Flames

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This topic contains 144 replies, has 5 voices, and was last updated by  Jefaris 9 months ago.

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  • #1676

    Mormy
    Keymaster

    “I will volunteer as well,” Valan added. “Though I have never faced a dragon before,” he said with a look to Fenella.

    “Hopefully you won’t have to. Stealth will be the key,” Commander Xeris said. “I can spare a few men to hold the tunnel just in case you are spotted by a patrol, but they won’t be able to hold it for long. If these cultists show up in force then I will have no choice but to seal the tunnel and you will have to find another way back to the keep. Do your best to keep this tunnel secret. We may need to use it again.”

    “The temple has a back door. I would suggest you use that,” Xeris spoke. Then he removed a large key ring from his belt and pulled off one of the keys and handed it to Brother Roc. “When you are ready I will show you to the cellars where you will find the tunnel. This key will unlock the grate at the other end.”

    “I have played hero enough already,” Venali said. “I will remain here. Perhaps I will catch up with you another time.”

    OOC – Venali and Jefaris will be staying behind at the keep unless they wish to post otherwise.

    #1677

    Jefaris
    Participant
    • Character Name: Jefaris
    • Class: Wizard
    • Race: Human
    • Background: Noble / Merchant

    Jefaris sat quietly, listening to all that was said. He wanted to continue to help but wasn’t sure he was up to it. He was disappointed in his performance on their journey to the keep. Ashamed, in fact. His fear with the dragon in particular disturbed him, the fact that he was paralyzed and could do nothing. He had expected that his training would have helped make him handle it better.

    “I will help as well,” Jefaris said haltingly. He looked around at the rest of the group, watching reactions closely. Perhaps he was more of a liability than a help. He’d soon find out.

    OOC: Sorry for the lengthy absence. The last few weeks has been pretty brutal for me. It should be better for me moving forward. The above post was made in such a way to try and “explain” Jef’s lack of engagement, not that he expects to be ejected from the group. Heh.

    #1678

    Mormy
    Keymaster

    “I would really like to know what these cultists are up to,” Governor Reevus said. “Should you encoutee these cultists and have a chance to bring one of them back here alive for questioning, please do. If you can capture an officer that would be even better. We need to know what their plans are and what they are looking for.”

    #1679

    Mormy
    Keymaster

    Commander Xeris leads the group back through the hallway and down another corridor that leads to a set of stairs going down into the cellars. Along the way he enlists the help of a few more soldiers, including Sergeant Miles. As he reaches the cellar he calls to the men to start clearing barrels away from the back wall. As the barrels are moved a stone door can be seen that matches the surrounding stone walls. It is a stone slab that turns on a swivel through the center of the door to create a 2 foot passage on either side that opens into a 4 foot wide and 6 foot high tunnel covered in cobwebs and darkness.

    The tunnel continues West for about 60 feet and then takes a bend towards the South-West for another 60 feet when it narrows even further into a round 4 foot diameter tunnel blocked by a wrought iron grate. The river can be seen beyond the grate a mere few feet away. A ditch is carved into the ground between the tunnel and the river to make the tunnel appear to be a sewer drain from the outside.

    The key fits the lock perfectly but the rusty grate gives off a muffled squeal as it is pushed open. As the group gathers outside they can spot the flames from the torches carried by the group of cultists gathered before the temple further in the South.

    OOC – The tree line is fairly thick. Enough to make for pretty decent cover but not so thick that it can’t be passed through. The hedge surrounding the temple is much thicker but only about 4 feet high. It is fully dark however and not much can be seen from that distance except for what is bathed in the torchlight carried by the cultists and kobolds.

     

    #1680

    Fenella
    Participant
    • Character Name: Fenella Elspeth
    • Class: Druid
    • Race: Wood Elf
    • Background: Outlander

    OOC: 7 for stealth

    Walking as quietly as she can Fenella skirts the river being cautiously aware of every sound and step she and the others make.

    Soon she can tell the trees are becoming more dense and she can see the outline of the temples roofline faintly behind them.

    Looking to the others she whispers “this is it, through here and we will come to the hedge.  We will have to find a spot where we can cross it without making noise.  Look for a break in it or a narrow place”.

     

    #1681

    Brother Sirocco
    Participant
    • Character Name: Brother Roc
    • Class: Monk
    • Race: Human
    • Background: Hermit

    Brother Roc nodded to Fenella and led the group forward through the trees until they were close enough to examine the hedge for any breaks or low spots to cross.  He made sure to stay on the rear side of the temple, opposite the cultists gathered at the front of the building.

    OOC:

    Roll of 13 for Stealth

    Roll of 26 for Perception – double damage to the hedge!  🙂

     

    #1682

    Fenella
    Participant
    • Character Name: Fenella Elspeth
    • Class: Druid
    • Race: Wood Elf
    • Background: Outlander

    For being rather tall Fenella has grace and agility on her side.  She is able to breach the hedge without so much as a sound, the others she is not so sure of.  Standing in such a way as to hold the branches from moving Fenella helps the others from making any sound as they too climb over the hedge.

    She smiles at each one as they cross over, glad that this group is  working together for the betterment of all.  A soft giggle escapes her lips when Miri and I’rema crossover as if the hedge was nothing more than large weed to be leaped over with a soft pounce.   The attachment she has formed in such a short time feels comforting.  She needs that feeling right now, it may be over at any time.

    Hearing the chatter of the cultist Fenella can picture where they are but can not see them.  It’s hard to tell exactly how many there are but she is sure there are enough to be trouble if they discover the group behind the temple.

    Quickly she dashes to the door at the back and waits for the others to cross the short distance from the hedge to the door.

    OOC: I hope it is okay to assume the actions of the others.  And since ‘Miri’ has been overwhelmed as of late I just wanted to include her as well.  I hope I didn’t overstep.

    ‘Miri’ I do hope that things are getting better at your job. BTW thank you for being such an important part of so many kids lives.  I only know a snippet of what has been going on.  John is very private and respectful of his friendships so he don’t say much.  Just that you won’t be posting much. Looking forward to you being able to post more often, but take your time and deal with the real world stuff.  Till then we are just happy to see your post when you do.

    #1683

    Mormy
    Keymaster

    Everyone makes it over the hedge and up to the back door without drawing any notice, at least not as far as anyone can tell.  However upon testing the back door it appears to be locked. There are two windows on either side of the door. It is dark on the other side of the window but Brother Roc notices a flicker of movement as if someone possibly moved past the window. Closer inspection does not reveal anyone. Not much detail can be made out in the darkness, but keener elven eyes can make out a large dining table and chairs.

    #1684

    Fenella
    Participant
    • Character Name: Fenella Elspeth
    • Class: Druid
    • Race: Wood Elf
    • Background: Outlander

    As Fenella lightly taps on the door she whispers through the crack of the door “hello we were sent here by Governor at the Keep to help bring you and the others back to the Keep”.

    She waits and repeats hoping somebody will hear her.

    OOC:

    Persuasion 6

    #1685

    Mormy
    Keymaster

    “Don’t listen to them, it’s a trick!” came a harsh whisper from beyond the door. “Tell the Bishop, we need more people to watch this door!”

    #1686

    Mirilandil
    Participant
    • Character Name: Mirilandil
    • Class: Ranger
    • Race: Half-Elf
    • Background: Outlander

    (ooc) Thanks, ‘Fenella’ — things always get easier, sometimes it just takes time.  I tend to take on too many things at once sometimes and pay the price by running out of time to do as well with things as I’d like!  🙂  I am hopeful this week coming will be better than the last two or three.

     

    (IC) “Commander Xeris bids you open the door and allow us egress,” Miri said, a touch of imperious steel to her voice.  “Do not delay our entrance. We have urgent business.”

    #1687

    Fenella
    Participant
    • Character Name: Fenella Elspeth
    • Class: Druid
    • Race: Wood Elf
    • Background: Outlander

    Backing completely away from the door Fenella makes herself visible to anyone who looks through the window.  Standing with her palms visible the only weapon to be shown is her staff.

    “Someone needs to heed your words Miri, we can’t let ourselves be this visible for too long”, Fenella softy says.

    #1688

    Mormy
    Keymaster

    There were several moments of silence followed by a bolt being turned back in the door.

    “You fool! It’s a trick!”

    “No, they know Commander Xeris, they were sent from the keep.”

    “It could be them! They could be lying! What if…”

    But the voice of protest was cut off as the door was pulled back. A figure stood in the doorway with a face full of fear and hope. Another figure stood behind him slowly backing up with a face distorted with horror as if expecting death to come through the door to take him.

    “You’ve come to rescue us?” the first figure asked. “Or are you really with them?”

    #1689

    Brother Sirocco
    Participant
    • Character Name: Brother Roc
    • Class: Monk
    • Race: Human
    • Background: Hermit

    “We are really with the leaders of Hemway,” Brother Roc answered, trying to be gentle but with a touch of exasperation in his lowered voice.  “The Governor and the Commander authorized our rescue attempt.  We want to get you and anyone else within the temple back to the keep.”

    The monk glanced back to the rear hedge, where the more challenged-in-nature had left telltale signs of their passage through, including himself.  “We have a way down along the river to reach the keep unseen by the raiders, but we must be quick and we must be quiet.”

    “How many are you?  Can you all make it to the keep under your own power?”

    #1690

    Mormy
    Keymaster

    “Come this way,” the man said as he lead them inside.

    Inside the door was a small hallway. Off to the left was a dining hall and to the right was a kitchen. Straight ahead the hallway lead to another door that opened up into the main sanctuary. Most of the benches had been moved out of the way and piled against the main door and windows. A few of the benches appeared partially burned where the attackers had tossed in torches from the broken windows, but they were now soaked with water. More buckets of water were lined along the walls with men standing by ready for the next attack.

    At least 20 people crowded into the sanctuary. Some women, some children, and a few were men dressed in white robes whom appeared to be the most able bodied among them. The temple priests appeared to have escaped most of the harm having managed to secure themselves in the sanctuary and they were the ones tending to the wounded. They all appeared to be bandaged and sitting up but a few were still lying down. One man appeared to be badly burned and likely would not be able to move.

    All appeared to be panicked with eyes wide with fear, except for one man who was no man at all but a half-elf with long white hair who appeared calm and serene. He moved among the priests and refuges to touch his hands upon their shoulders and whispering soothing words to banish their fear at least for a moment. As he saw the others enter from the back of the sanctuary he approached.

    “I am Bishop Ellarus, I am told you have been sent to help,” the half-elf’s words had an almost magical soothing effect that made one forget the mob of raiders just outside the door bent on plunder and murder. “Most of these people should be able to walk with some assistance, but two at least will need to be carried for I have no more healing for them.”

    Then a heavy booming sound struck the front door of the Temple as something large and heavy was slammed against it in an attempt to batter it down. The walls shook and all heads turned to the door with a sudden panicked silence. Then the boom sounded again and the heavy wooden doors groaned under the pressure, and wood began to crack.

    “We have no time,” the bishop replied, his voice still soft and calm. “Get them to their feet, we need to move now. Secure these two to a bench, they will need to be carried.” The white robed men quickly rushed to do the Bishops bidding as the booming came once again, then several more flaming torches flew in through the windows and landed on the floor.

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