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Mists of the North (A Birthright Tale)

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    #46
    Re: Mists of the North (A Birthright Tale)

    Spoiler

    Malena's Aethelbaldsotter The Half-Elven Winter Sorcereress
    Wjulfsdattir Leaving
    Tags: Starting Quest


    "Lucky with Sigrunn? Push it by bringing you in? Ah. I see how my words can be misconstrued. Still you should have your own talk with Sigrunn, especially if you intend to keep pouncing on Crassus or sneaking into his bedroll. Best to talk things out and quickly and not let things build." Malena spoke the wisdom that Gretta had no doubt heard elsewhere or even given it to her a few times with a saucy smirk on her lips.

    Malena thought on those last words that Gretta said. Her eyes promised teasing retribution as she looked at Gretta. The teasing war would soon commence.

    ...

    Malena nodded at Gretta's sound point. She has to be courteous, especially so and not step on the clan's pride. That would invite a blood fued, open rebellion and a whole host of other ills that Hogunmark did not need or deserve.

    "Deer trail littered with Goblins, gnolls, orogs and other monsters... Should there be any worries of an ambush or obstruction on the deer trail?" She looked at Sigrunn as she posed this question. Trying to figure out how often it is used by other creatures besides the druids.

    With the discussion ending and Gretta echoing her words as she fitted in her greatsword, placed her longsword and even slung her shield. Malena just shook her head at her bodyguards boisterous words. Confidence oozing out of Gretta's forms at slaying the vile fell goblins. She checked herself, making sure the battledress she had been gifted had the leather top fully cinched and buckled. She tested her focus, looking at the crystal and envisioning her power running through it. With that completed she motioned towards Brennor.

    "Brennor, I know you will already be doing this but for my own clarity of mind, please inform my lord father on where I am going and what I am doing." Malena thought of writing and giving it to Brennor to hand to her father but thought better of it. After all, it'd be much more fun to tell her father of her adventures in person.

    Everything seemed in proper order as Heleg had her bags and she nodded her head towards Crassus. A thankful nod as she helped herself atop of her horses.

    Sigrunn own preparations were... Scanty. She must really be use to the cold to run about in only that. Perhaps some sort of training the Emerald Spiel put any prospective Druids through. "Hm." Malena hummed aloud.

    "The fey creatures... do you know of any we may stumble upon towards the cursed grove? I would like to know more and what sort lay around in these parts." Malena spoke up, showing her interest and trying to start a conversation as they rode off towards East from Wjulfsdattir while Brennor and her personal retinue went back to Veikanger.

    The trip is passes without much worry, Malena helped out with Crassus and Gretta in putting up the tents. Even asking if either Crassus or Gretta wished to be warmed as well. Malena showed what she meant by casting of Prestidgation on a bundled blanket, warming up bundled blanket that fits within a cubic foot.

    When night came, she had no candles lit and instead had been listening to the outside night. Hearing the noises of the wildlife in the night. She imagined a chorus of them waiting for one noise before going off. To add their own noise to the previous chorus and crafting a song... Only for her flap to open. Malena looked at the shadowy figure and looked...

    "Ahh yes." Malena spoke in a sleepy voice. "Sleep? Ok." Malena gave very simple words and... opened up her sleeping blanket. The warmth and heat flowing out of it quickly as waited somewhat impatiently for Sigrunn to get in.

    Malena turned and just... buried her nose and head against Sigrunn's, scrunching closer against her and cuddling. Her mind not really up for... sexual antics but not turning away the warmth and heat Sigrunn offered. Cuddling against the druidess on the first night. If Sigrunn decided to pet Malena or squeeze her, she'd start hearing the half-elven sorceress mewl and purr in her sleep like a cat.

    ---

    Travelling once more in the morning, Malena stretching out happily as she got her stuff together and helped out with packing the tents.

    As they got closer Malena noticed a stark change in the trees. They were... different. As if something had nestled into the trees and made them pulse with some unnaturalness that put them off their basic pulse. Her hairs on her body stood on end as she looked at Sigrunn, Crassus, and Gretta. No ill ease she could sense from Crassus and Gretta but from Sigrunn she could.

    Black Leafed Oaks, craggy hills littered with broken rocks. Sigrunn's annoucement...

    Gnolls. Crassus pointed them out as Malena narrowed her eyes. They were at the top and had a full vantage view. "Crassus, has those gnolls noticed us yet?" Malena asked as she peered up at the hill.

    "A pack of gnolls... I have a good hunch that if we ignore them and try to do the investigation, they will fall upon us at a most inopportune time. Sigrunn, you know this area better then anyone here. Do you know where a place is at to cause an accident to befall the gnolls at the top of the hill?" Malena being cold-blooded. If the gnolls are slain but not the other pack, then they would know interest has developed at this cursed grove. But if they died due to an accident of nature, the gnolls would most likely chalk it up fearfully to supersition and stay away from a while. All these assumptions were running in Malena's head and ready to be divulged if any curious looks were sent her way on why she asked her question.

    Malena idly thought about being diplomatic but... she had a good inkling that would just lead to more issues then anything else, unless those gnolls carried some insignia that forced her to be diplomatic lest she starts a war with the white witch.
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    A huge Fan of Adventures of Tara! No link in my signature through, instead look above at her posing while barely able to cover her tits.

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      #47
      Re: Mists of the North (A Birthright Tale)

      The prior night, and Vanarukk's Den

      During the journey, Malena had observed Gretta and Sigrunn each taking the opportunity to share some words with Crassus and speak between the two of them. Later on, Gretta reported back to the princess that in the spirit of openness, the houscarl warrior was not looking for a long lasting relationship with anyone at the present, and was not going to interfere if anyone in the group was interested in exploring a relationship with each other.

      "As far as I'm concerned, the hotsprings was a bit of fun, but it's not like I'm interested in marrying anyone at the moment. If ever I were to start a family, it'd be after my soldiering years, and I'm not intent on that ending anytime soon." Gretta explained.

      Sigrunn was grateful for that explanation, but unwilling to speak openly about her feelings more than she already had. She wished to remain close to both Crassus and the Princess, sharing a bedroll with either of them, with no expectations beyond that.

      Crassus was forthright with his own feelings, speaking with measured poetic passion. He considered himself to be among three heroic women, and was merely happy to be of some service. He would sing their praises and provide what comfort and relief he could - if asked. Gretta had chuckled at this, and asked if all skalds were such sluts. In turn, Crassus and slapped her ass and told her she was one to talk, the way she'd crooned after a goodberry or two.

      ...

      During the journey, Sigrunn explained that Hogunmark was simply too vast a land to keep track of every thing that passed among its borders and woodlands.

      "The fey are not as present in Hogunmark as they are in the woodlands to the east, but that is not to say that their presence cannot be felt. By their very nature, the fey are difficult to understand and describe - but any that would inhabit a blighted grove would not be very friendly. It is best to assume that the grove will need to be cleansed of some sort of corruptive spirit. It's exact nature I could only speculate upon. When I see it, I may be able to tell you more."

      ...

      Later that night, Sigrunn had entered the princess' tent and added her body's warmth to her own. Despite the approach of winter and her lack of hides as compared to the others, Sigrunn's body was particularly warm, and was nice to cling to as Malena tried to fall asleep. The druidess stroked and caressed Malena along the back of he head and along her spine and butt, but did not squeeze her. Eventually, the pair fell asleep together.

      ...

      Later that next day, they had reached their destination, the rocky hill topped with black leafed oaks that was known as Vanarukk's Den. The gnolls at the top of the hill did not appear to notice the party quite yet, and Crassus indicated this quietly with a shake of his head. The four companions kept low, hiding behind tree trunks and bushes.

      "Gnolls are arguably some of the most savage and mindless of the humanoid races from the Barony," Crassus added. "You're right, they might attack us if they become aware of us, or if we don't strike first. Certainly, being diplomatic isn't a good option for us. They hate humans... and elves."

      The druid looked over at Malena.

      "I know this area by the feel of it, but an accident? No, I don't know of any way other than battle to rid ourselves of the gnoll threat."

      Another look up at the top of the hill, and it seemed that the two visible gnolls were turning around and moving back towards the center of the hilltop.

      "They are going towards the blighted grove. The wards that the Sorcerer placed upon the grove would drive them away too, normally. This is strange that they would be there, so close to the haunted area."

      "It seems we could either try climbing up the rockier side of the hill, or progress through the wooded side of the hill face towards the top. The woodside would mean we wouldn't have to risk the climb, and we'd have some cover for stealth, but on the other hand, it's the direction the gnolls might expect people to approach from." Gretta said.

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        #48
        Re: Mists of the North (A Birthright Tale)

        Spoiler

        Malena's Aethelbaldsotter The Half-Elven Winter Sorcereress
        The Prior Night, and Vanarukk's Den (The Cursed Emerald Spiel Grove)
        Tags: Starting Quest


        Malena hummed aloud as she responded "Mmmm, I hope those soldiering years aren't your whole life. I would like each of my potential children to be guarded by one whose bloodline cannot be faulted." The half-elven sorceress eyes glinting with a teasing look. She knew, that unless something rendered her sterile, she'd planned to have at minimum three children. A heir, a spare, and one to spoil.

        Sigrunn's expectations are simple. The half elven princess looking at her with a measured look. She didn't make a quip or anything to make fun of Sigrunn through her thoughts lingered on all three of them sharing a bed for... warmth. She wasn't sure if Crassus would be able to keep his hands to himself.

        The lordly son of Wjulfsdattir again proved himself a word smith. His flowing flowery words... Malena giigled at the way he spoke and weaved. The teasing play between Gretta and Crassus... "Goodberrys don't have any... arousing properties do they?" Malena questioned Sigrunn after hearing that tease. Her inner thirst for knowledge pushing her to ask.

        ...

        "There is going to be a corrupted spirit - mayhap a fey - in the blighted grove. Hm. I hope the creature we run into is something not outside of your knowledge then."

        The half elven princess pondered on whether or not that a spirit in the grove could be saved as well, but she'd save that question once they got to the blighted grove and knew what laid in wait. She did ask Sigrunn if there were any named Fey that the Emerald Spiel in her area knew about. The princesses thirst for new knowledge and deeper understandings of her land being very apparent. She wanted to know from a person that lived in the lands she asked about instead of the general knowledge she had from her studies.

        ...

        Hiding from the sight of the gnolls in the tree trunks and hearty brush that surrounded the hill. Malena crouched, her form laying out low as she peered through brush, dirt getting onto her battle dress even as she peered through the brush.

        "Ah. So only by battle." Malena spoke softly, not wanting her voice to carry. "Mayhap the gnolls have done something to... gain entrance through the wards? It is strange as I know my elvish ancestors despised gnolls and other monstrous folk." Malena stopped in her words, not wanting to lay out any of her speculations until they had a better idea.

        "Sigrunn, is there any druidic lore that will hide the noise of our passing on either path? I'm inclined to be... bold. And act as bait if sighted at the top of the hill." Malena remembering Gretta's choice of attacking that slaver band. Being bold and audacious would surprise the gnolls through...

        "Sigrunn, will you be the scout of our group?" Malena asked.

        Malena's plan is simple, get to the top of the hill, peer at the surroundings and get a view of what is going on. Change the plan accordingly to what happens once they reach the top of the hill.
        sigpic

        A huge Fan of Adventures of Tara! No link in my signature through, instead look above at her posing while barely able to cover her tits.

        Comment


          #49
          Re: Mists of the North (A Birthright Tale)

          Spoiler


          DM
          Vanarukk's Den


          Goodberry Question:
          Spoiler


          ...

          "It's likely that the gnolls are unable to enter the grove either. The ward was against those without elven blood," Sigrunn explained, as the gnolls milled above on the rocky hill.

          The druid's lips pinched slightly at the request for druidic lore.

          "There is lore that those of the Emerald Spiral teach for passage without trace. But I am not yet advanced enough in my bond to Erik to know these spells. A druid's connection with nature is a very individual choice. I am more in tune with the beasts of the woods. But while I cannot silence our steps, I can summon a cloud of fog to hide us from our foes and protect our approach."

          "That would be beneficial, princess." Gretta said. "Gnolls typically fight with long bows from range before engaging with weakened foes. Fog would let us get close where we would have the advantage."

          "If you wish me to scout, I could assume the form of a forest creature." Sigrunn replied. "Among my druid circle, it is known as taking the second skin. I know many forms, but can only maintain a form for about an hour, and only twice per day, before I am forced to rest and regather my energies."

          "Won't the fog blind us as well?" Crasssus asked.

          "Perhaps, but I will turn into a wolf and my keen senses will allow me to guide us up to the gnolls. No doubt I will be able to catch their scent in that form. We only need stay within sight of each other while we move up, and we should be able to surprise them out of the fog," Sigrunn said.

          The companions turned to Malena to see if she agreed or would like to amend the plan in any way.

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