Saturday 10 February 2024

Turn 35: The Thrappled Lemmings and the Manly Men in Tights (Five Leagues from the Borderlands

 A renowned magus was in Haitabu when the Thrappled Lemmings arrived and all the talk was about her. The Lemmings felt thoroughly put out after how they had been feted in Utstein Marknad. Fortunately, they felt better after the merchant covered their food and drink costs for helping him reach Haitabu without untoward events along the way. Fulrad and Drogo took time to spar together and both learned a little. Lysanthir headed to the market where he sold the remaining gold bars and bought a bottle of Tonic. It would come in handy at some point soon, he mused. While at the market, he met up with Griselda the baker's daughter, who had been travelling on deliveries and had passed near the Hooded Men's "secret" base. The Hooded Men had been dancing and singing, as was their wont, which gave her time to scout a bit. She passed on this intelligence to Lysanthir.

With all the chores done, Lysanthir rounded up the Thrappled Lemmings and they headed out. Time to make the town safer for beer and baked goods deliveries. With any luck, they could have the hideout destroyed and be back in The Unicorn and Lion by teatime.

As they approached the hideout, it became clear that the bandits in it were the least of their ilk. The others must be out doing evil wherever they were. Still, the lead bandit looked like a tough cookie, so perhaps it would not be as simple as all that. And the hideout was fortified, which would make it more difficult too.

Bandits line the walls of a stockade (Dave Graffam city walls)

"Right, lads," announced Sir Thiebault, "Here's the plan. Most of you have bows. We're going to use them. First one to hit the bandit captain gets an extra tankard of ale. The one who kills him drinks free for the whole night. Once he's dead we charge."

A chorus of "Yup" and "Yeah" from the rest of the Thrappled Lemmings acknowledge the tactical astuteness of, and agreement with, the plan. They moved out and were quickly lining the woods nearest the bandit fort. Lysanthir decided to push on ahead because he had no bow. He was within knife strike of the elderly bandit on the Lemmings' left flank before the man spotted him and raised a shout.

"Oh ho!" cried the bandit leader, slapping his thigh, "What have we here? By the pricking of my thumbs, 'tis a motley crew of ne'erd-do-wells and chancers. At them, chaps!"

Alas the jovial bandit captain would never slap his thigh again

Onesipe and Fulrad sighted carefully at the jovial bandit captain. They paused, breathed out slowly and then shot. Their shots were nigh simultaneous, and nigh simultaneously they missed by a country mile.

"Feh, it's a long shot," grumbled Onesipe.

Wido shot and put his arrow straight through the bandit captain's heart, despite the range and the cover afforded by the fort.

"Luck!" grumbled Onesipe.

Drogo sighted and fired. A bandit slinger fell from the stockade.

"More luck," grumbled Onesipe bitterly.

Lysanthir leapt the last yard at his target and struck hard, but the elderly bandit fought back hard and was only driven back. The bandit then attacked back and drove Lysanthir back in turn. Lysanthir returned to the fray. This time he had the measure of his foe, who was soon stretched out full length on the ground never to move again.

Onesipe finally had his crossbow sighted in and killed a bandit slinger on the battlements. In short order, two more bandits lay dead as Sir Thiebault and Drogo attacked and slew them. This was all too much for the remaining two bandits, who took to their heels and fled as fast as they could. The Lemmings let them run. The threat posed by the Hooded Men was weakened, and there must be some treasure worth seizing in that stockade.

The Lemmings found two letters that hinted at great treasure ahead if one followed the clues. Their search quickly revealed that the jovial bandit was none other than the Dread Bandit Barold. Searching his hut in the stockade produced documents that gave the Lemmings a headstart on the Hooded Men's plans. The Scout's Cloak and Repair Kit they found seemed small potatoes in contrast to all this.

The whole battle had taken less than half an hour, the haul of loot was satisfying and they had struck a blow against the Hooded Men. All in all, mused the Lemmings as they quaffed ale in the Mucky Duck back at Haitabu, it had not been a bad day's work. Lysanthir was particularly satisfied because he had found a scroll from which he had learnt the spell Meekness. That would come in useful for humbling his enemies.

While they drank, Sigrid the Beggar entered the tavern and approached the party. For form's sake, she demanded 1 Mark from them for the information she was about to give them. They paid up and she informed them that a horde of Stumbling Dead had set up camp on the road into town. She would pay them to kill the zombies within 3 weeks.

No comments:

Post a Comment