Prologue: The Road to Hornpipe


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Post Sun Sep 09, 2018 2:03 pm

Re: Prologue: The Road to Hornpipe

"Phew!"

Willie collapses onto his back after loading that much turnips. For a moment it seems as if he may never rise again, but soon one hand scrabbles in the dirt for the half-eaten turnip he's been working on. A munch of this, and a healthy swig out of Farmer Skip's cider jug seem to restore him somewhat! He's soon sitting up & eyeing the cart of turnips.

"I suppose I could have done better. But I only had two breakfasts this morning!" He looks abashed. "I was in a rush.

"Never toss turnips on an empty stomach, it's what me Ma always says."


When he sees Tet loading again, he tries to get to his feet, but thinks better of it & loads up his pipe instead.

He contents himself by offering immaterial aid: "Well done, Mr. Tet, sir!"
[f=32]Wiglaff the Elf (M 12", AC 9, HD 1+2, hp 8/8, N) helm+cloak of elvenkind, short-bow, or helm+shield, hand-axe, color spray (map)[/f]
[f=47]Wilibald "Willie" Whitfoot, Burglar-in-Training (M 12", AC 6, HD 1+2, hp 9/9, L)[/f]
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Post Sun Sep 09, 2018 2:40 pm

Re: Prologue: The Road to Hornpipe

Potty drops out of the turnip-stacking competition, so it's all up to Tet!

Due to fatigue, the big hobbet is 2d20 = 26% less effective. He manages "only" 750 pounds before he has to come up for air. This brings his total to 1764, still shy of Willie's record.

Tet takes a slug from the cider jug, rolls 17 on his save vs. paralysis, and recovers his strength.

Will Tet push himself to the limit and attempt to claim first prize?
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Post Sun Sep 09, 2018 3:37 pm

Re: Prologue: The Road to Hornpipe

Chegs sits down near his gear, he takes a long swing of Farmer Skip's cider before fishing into his pack for a bit o' cheese and an apple to snack upon. "Bloody 'ell! What a workout, I've been slackin'. Mighty good cider Skip, don't tell my pa but it even beats his best - what a shame that is. I have a lot of work to do on my own brewing to match the fine quality of your cider." Chegs then moves his shield a bit and uses his pack and cloak as a back rest as he eats.
Veshengo "Vesh the scarred" Polgár Magic-User 1
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Warrec "Chegs" Chegwidden Fighting-Hobbet 1
S:14 I:10 W:9 Co:9 D:10 Ch:8 Gold:2 Copper: 45 HP:5
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Post Mon Sep 10, 2018 2:49 pm

Re: Prologue: The Road to Hornpipe

Dougal chuckles quietly to himself when he realizes the farmer fell for his ruse, having actually loaded just half that amount. He kicks back on the hillside, the fine long grasses cushioning him all the while, and watches the other hobbets sweat profusely trying to out-do one another.

"When you lot is done flexing your muskells, maybe we'z can get on our way, yeah?" he calls out lazily as Tet finishes his load of nips.
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Post Mon Sep 10, 2018 10:13 pm

Re: Prologue: The Road to Hornpipe

Wha? exhorts the red-faced Tet. Does this pile never end?

Oblivious to the others, and with sweat now pouring off him, the fat hobbet pauses long enough to wipe his brow before completing the work with gusto.
[f=32]Golgildir the Elf Medium (MV 12", AC 9, HD 1, hp 1/1, AL N) great cloak, lantern; spells: color spray; scrolls: sleep, sleep, charm person
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Post Mon Sep 10, 2018 11:20 pm

Re: Prologue: The Road to Hornpipe

Tet soldiers on but loses an additional 3d20=36% productivity. Sweat pours from his brow, and veins bulge in his neck!

He manages 480 pounds before collapsing from exhaustion. This brings his total to 2,244.

Tet is the turnip-stacking champion!

But victory comes at a price... Tet rolls 9 and fails his save vs. paralysis. He suffers a minor injury such as a stiff back, stubbed toe, or pulled hamstring; I'll let you decide. The damage is roughly equal to half a hit point: worth complaining about, but not serious enough to have any in-game effect.

"Good job, Tet!" says the farmer. "I'm glad you stopped when you did. I don't think my team can pull any more. Here is your prize: A flask of the Missuses' turnip schnapps. It will perk you up when the dungeon grinds you down."

Tet wins 1 dose of Missus Pebble's Turnip Schnapps, equivalent to a potion of cure light wounds.

"Now, let's get on the road, shall we? These magnificent creatures are called Burr and Dock." He introduces you to the most enormous oxen you have ever seen!

"We should reach Hornpipe by lunch-time tomorrow. Does anyone know any good songs, poems, or stories to pass the time? I'll go first: (ahem) I once knew a Hobbet named Betty/Who was covered in fur like a Yeti..."

As the ox-cart rolls down the hard-packed Aylesbury Pike, the turnip farmer recites a series of ribald limericks that leave our Heroes roaring with laughter and gasping for breath. The aches and pains of the morning's labor fade as the cider-jug makes the rounds and the cart rocks soothingly back and forth. It is a surprisingly comfortable ride on top of the turnip sacks.

Anyone know a good song, rhyme, joke, or tall tale?
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Post Tue Sep 11, 2018 4:17 am

Re: Prologue: The Road to Hornpipe

Chegs gathers up his gear, donning his cloak & pack, before picking up his shield and tossing the core of his apple to the side of the road. He had taking another out of his pack before putting it on, which he rubs on his breeches before eating as he climbs into the cart with the party. He occasionally takes a mouthful of water to wash down the apple.

~this wee trip is starting alright - Chegs thinks to himself~
Veshengo "Vesh the scarred" Polgár Magic-User 1
S: 7 I: 17 W: 9 Cn: 13 D: 13 Ch: 4 Gold: 28 Silver: 16 Copper: 10 HP: 5

Warrec "Chegs" Chegwidden Fighting-Hobbet 1
S:14 I:10 W:9 Co:9 D:10 Ch:8 Gold:2 Copper: 45 HP:5
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Post Tue Sep 11, 2018 11:48 am

Re: Prologue: The Road to Hornpipe

Tet puts away more than his share of cider, regularly mentioning his need for refreshment after his cart-loading labours. With the pleasant buzz of Master Skip's apple and pear bubbly, and the enviable company encouraging him manfully, Tet partakes of the song and rhyme in the fullest.

Here's one, Tet announces in the mid-afternoon. Then he struggles to remember a ridiculous little verse that a distant relation once sung to him. Bless me if I can't barely recall the dratted thing!, he complains, but it would be just about right for this sort of thing! Eventually he manages to string a tune together...

Tha road goes ever on and on,
Out from the door where it began.
Now far ahead the Road has gone,
Let others follow them who can!

Tha road goes ever on and on,
For days and nights be good or ill,
By turnip cart and oxen strong,
Arriv'd at last at HORNPIPE HILL.
[f=32]Golgildir the Elf Medium (MV 12", AC 9, HD 1, hp 1/1, AL N) great cloak, lantern; spells: color spray; scrolls: sleep, sleep, charm person
Hirelings: Georges; torch[/f]
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Post Tue Sep 11, 2018 7:48 pm

Re: Prologue: The Road to Hornpipe

Dougal looks around expectantly, with an unusual smile curling the edges of his mouth, because he liked nothing more than a good play on words or limerick.

Seeing nobody else jump in, he clears his throat and says, "My mum muttered one whenever my cousin, Sammilton, would visit..."

"There once was a hobbet named Sam
Who bragged, 'What a fine cook I am!'
But he was mad as a hatter,
who served shoe leather on a platter
And jars of purple toad stool jam."


"He, uhhh... he wasn't all right in the head. Fell off a pony an hit his head on a rock when he was younger, he did."

After he finishes, he furrows his brow, trying to think of the one his da taught him, the one he should never repeat in front of his mum...
Dougal Blackfoot (MV 9", AC 6, HD 1, HP 5/5, FC 1 Man) leather, short sword+main gauche
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Post Wed Sep 12, 2018 12:47 am

Re: Prologue: The Road to Hornpipe

Ol' Skip Pebbles gets a far-away look in his eye as he listens to Tet's song. Perhaps he is daydreaming of the adventures of his own youth. Dougal's comic rhyme brings him back to earth and brings a smile to his kindly face.

Hours pass in a friendly haze of laughter and song. The weather is sunny and unusually warm for December. One of the Hobbets remarks, this adventuring life is not so hard! Chegs and Willie daydream while Potty occupies his mind by observing the winter mushrooms of the forest: ruffled turkey tails, pale smooth birch brackets, varnished artist's conk...

The days are short this time of year, and before you know it the sun is sinking in the west. Our Hobbets are getting hungry and sleepy. The farmer says, "Cheer up! Soon we will reach our campsite at Peapod Brook, build a fire, and cook a proper meal." But there is a false note in his words of encouragement; he thinks he hears the snap of a twig, and he can't shake the feeling he's being watched. "Mush mush mush!" he commands the oxen, urging them to pick up the pace.

Finally the tension breaks: Burr and Dock come to a sudden stop and the cart lurches to an awkward halt. The oxen have caught scent of something and refuse to pull. The farmer struggles to regain control over his panicked team. "Guys, I don't want to alarm you, but I think someone or something is approaching from the north. I hope it's not bandits! Lucky we weren't surprised. Get to your battle stations while I deal with these stubborn animals."

Quick, what do you do?
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