With the discovery of our new ally Torrin now deceased, I’m not sure how to deal with the automaton. Since I’m not able to understand how he/she/it speaks with the other members of the house, it’s just that much more difficult for me to gauge how Red is going to act around other people. Kerig has given us some assurance that this isn’t going to happen again, but I’m going to have to start keeping an eye on anyone we start inviting into our fold.
Bri, Narrg, and Ysran took the task of burying Torrin. There must be something akin to all dwarves that allows them to form bonds in virtually no time at all. The three of them spoke of honoring this man as if he was a long time friend or comrade in battle. How exactly do they accomplish this? Tradition? Cultural identity? Shared semi-racist commentary? Alcoholism? Whatever the case, I may have some pity for the man having been killed in the night. But that small amount of pity by no means makes up for the fact that he tried to kill us. Besides, I’ve seen enough death over the decades; one more grave won’t cause me to turn my head. I decided to stay behind and consider what I might need to be doing to help the clan on its quest to rebuild its legacy.
It didn’t take long for the dwarven trio to return; a couple of hours at most. Despite the solemn atmosphere that followed them into the house, they all had stern faces. Perhaps it wasn’t the loss of a new friend that caused this, but rather the loss of an opportunity for something better; someone to help shape this clan into the power it once was.
With the mornings events complete, we all set off to visit the mayor. We needed to discuss how we were going to give the town a chance to alert the neighbors in the event of a goblin incursion. The mayor was about his usual hustle and bustle, stopping for a moment to speak with us about the possibilities for the defense of the town. We had considered making horns from available cattle, but it didn’t seem like there would be enough livestock in the area. I had spoken with the mayor about making gongs, which is what we ultimately decided on. Our resources were limited, so we agreed to have Thrapt start on a small number of them for some of the homesteads while the five of us went out to investigate the extent of the goblin threat.
We returned to the compound to prepare for our trip around the countryside and Kerig requested that we leave the automaton in his care for now. He wanted to take the chance to determine what Red’s intentions were or how it will act in the future with the council in the position of clan leadership. In Red’s absence, Tanis joined us. We hoped that her expertise might be of some use to us in our search.
We weren’t traveling long before we came across a small group of goblins heading across the fields. They didn’t seem to notice us, so Tanis, Ysran, and myself took up following them while remaining as hidden as possible, with Bri and Narrg following at a distance. We trailed them for several hours, on into the evening. With the daylight gone, it was becoming more and more difficult for me to track them. But hearing them wasn’t a problem for me, and Tanis and Ysran didn’t seem to have any trouble keeping their eyes on them. It must be nice being able to see when it’s nearly dark.
At some point the goblins must have realized that we were following them, because after we trailed them for a little longer neither of my ranger companions were able to locate them, nor could I hear them. As we passed through a couple of trees hoping to keep on their trail, the three of us were ambushed! Ysran and I took the brunt of the damage, which wasn’t so bad; since the two of us are more accustomed to close quarter fighting. But poor Tanis couldn’t get off a shot with the way we were all cluttered together.
After the initial attack, one of the goblins tossed a sunrod to the ground; illuminating the area for us. Thankfully, this also gave Bri and Narrg our position, and it only took them a moment to catch up to us. In spite of the goblins surprise advantage, it wasn’t long before we dispatched them. With the night upon us, we took the opportunity to setup camp. In searching around, we found a well made bronze skull on one of the goblins. It’s always interesting to find trinkets like this, sometimes it helps me glean some insight into their history; though I’m really not sure what to think of this one.
The night passed without incident. As we cleaned up camp, it seemed clear to us that the goblins were headed in certain direction, and that we should follow along their path in hopes of finding out more about the goblin force in the area. It wasn’t long after we departed and traveling in that direction that we came across another camp, one slightly elevated from our position.
This gave us a bit of a chance to try and assess their position. Tanis quietly worked around one side of their camp, and Ysran crept along the other. Just as Ysran and Tanis got into position, skeletons started to claw out of the dirt right next to them; two surrounding Ysran and one attacking Tanis. I pulled out my crossbow and ran towards Tanis, while Bri and Narrg went off to help Ysran. I fired a bolt at the skeleton bearing down on Tanis. It met its mark, breaking through the corpse’s skull and shattering the hand it held it’s scimitar in; giving Tanis enough time to slide away and start taking shots of her own.
The skeletons fell with relative ease, but not before one of the goblin afflicted Narrg with some sort of curse. Every time he ran to meet another foe, he looked as though he was bleeding even more than before. Yet somehow, that didn’t seem to slow him down. He barreled head long into the fray, with Bri and Ysran following behind him, and Tanis and I closing in on the other side. When the whole group met in the center of the camp, we made quick work of the goblins that remained.
After the battle, Ysran found a magic staff and a circlet on one of the goblins. He also came upon a book that he handed over to me, knowing my love of reading. When I opened it though, I couldn’t decipher any of the words it contained. There must be something magical about this text, and while I’ve normally been fairly good at identifying such effects, this one completely escaped me. Now might be a good time to expand my knowledge on that subject. I’m sure it would be useful if one of the members of the house had a better grasp on matters of the arcane.