Alright, now things are just starting to get ridiculous. Today we ran into another adventuring party. How many maps did this enigmatic tavern-dwelling jerk sell exactly? I need to find this man and get him working on some more interesting cons – he clearly has some talent. I was so busy trying to keep the two bands I’ve already welded together from breaking out into random acts of violence against one another that I didn’t notice we were coming upon another group until the last moment. Although this crew didn’t call themselves adventurers – they claimed to be engineers. Because, you know, going out into the wilderness to loot monster lairs is what engineers do. On the other hand though they were all wearing goggles so clearly they were engineers – it’s like archeologists and whips, or butchers with top hats, you can’t have one without the other.
They were only too happy to join up in a combined assault – in fact I don’t remember even asking them, they just kind of glommed onto us and starting yammering on about crossbows. If there’s one thing engineers love it’s grease, but if there’s two things the other is crossbows. They all had little pet names for one another like Deadeye and Hailstorm, the kind of thing boys do when they’re lads. The leader was called, brace yourself, Godsend. I will admit, he cut a rather impressive figure – especially compared to the rest of his band – engineering is not a profession that attracts handsome fellows clearly. He had a pair of boots of flying that unlike many I’ve seen didn’t have sissified little wings flapping on the sides. Maybe that’s the engineering part.
Getting two groups together was highly volatile but for some reason adding in a third group helped to smooth everything over rather than further enflaming the situation. I suppose maybe the engineers just bored everyone into peacefulness. Sken, the ginger leader of band number two, was particularly obsequious towards “Godsend”. It’s a phenomenon you seem occasionally with ignorant gutter-rats. Some of them disdain those with fancy educations and some of them revere them. I will admit that sometimes I saw men of science do some pretty amazing things back at court. Of course I also saw a lot of them blow themselves up, which is honestly what the Duke and his cronies were hoping for. Rich people don’t support the sciences because they want to make the world a better place – they do it because they want to see a funny little man in an apron annihilate himself in a blast of fire. And they often get it.
The adventuring triple alliance encountered our first gnolls today – they were so eager to get to the killing they got in each other’s way. After all they were three gnolls and only sixteen of us – clearly it was a dicey situation. I’ve heard that gnolls are more animal than man and are insanely aggressive but that’s what people say about all humanoids. They appear to be right however about gnolls because being outnumbered five to one didn’t stop them from charging. It also didn’t stop them from being mowed down by the combined might of three adventuring bands without even landing a blow. Afterwards while they were all slapping each other on the back and congratulating themselves I got their attention for a moment – no easy task.
“That was great guys, just great, good response time. However I do have one note – you were kind of getting in each other’s way in your eagerness to get at the enemy. Now I’m no tactician or general or what have you, but if we’re going to assault a gnoll fort you should probably work out exactly who’s going to do what and when so you don’t hinder each other. You’ve clearly all had lots of practice working together in your own individual bands but maybe we should take some time to figure out how you can all work together.”
They were pleased as punch at that suggestion and a camp was set up straight away so they could spend the rest of the day training. Looked like a bunch of morons playing grabass to me but that’s not really my area of expertise. We’ll find out soon enough. If the natives were right we should come across this gnoll fort tomorrow.
Funds: 9,863 gold
Inventory: Ring of Many Garments, Bag of Tricks (rust), Cap of Disguise, Secure Pocket, Resplendent Diplomat’s Palette, Secure Paypack, Skeleton Key, Brooch of Shielding, Pouch of Magic Stones, Masterful Grey Gloves, Black Marketers’ Bag, Biting Bracelet (Endless Ammunition), Boots of Escape, Bracers of the Glib Entertainer, Ring of Animal Friendship, +1 Falchion, +1 Greatclub, +2 Commanding Light Crossbow, Headband of Alluring Charisma +2, 4 potions of unknown wickedness, Manual of Quickness of Action, Bracer of Fire Resistance (10), Spear of Piercing Thunder
Signet ring, noble’s outfit, candlerod (9), masterwork dagger, succubi carving, Domiel family ring, walking stick, masterwork playing cards, spinel and peridot holy symbol of Kralten, diamonds (14), silver crown, waterskins (6), trail rations (7)
Potion of Invisibility (2), Potion of Spider Climb, Potion of Eagle’s Splendor, Potion of Jump, Potion of Reduce Person
Silver ring, gold bracelet, gold and pearl pendant, gold ring, platinum necklace (2), mithril hair clasps (3), 4 small diamonds
Revenge List: Duke Eaglevane,
Piltis Swine, Rince
Electrum, watchman Gridley, White-Muzzle the worg, Percy Ringle
the butler , Alice Kinsey , “ Patch”, Heroes of the Lost Sword, Claire
Conrad, Erist priest of Strider, Riselda owner of the Sage Mirror,
Eedraxis, Skin-Taker tribe,
Kartak, Królewna & Bonifacja Trading Company, Hurmont Family, Androni
Titus, Greasy dreadlocks woman, Lodestone Security, Kellgale Nickoslander,
Beltian Kruin the Splithog Pauper, The King of Spiders, Auraluna Domiel, mother
Hurk, Mazzmus Parmalee, Helgan
van Tankerstrum, Lightdancer, Bonder Greysmith, Pegwhistle Proudfoot, Lumbfoot
Rumors : Exiled noblewoman (Reoccurring), vigilante “Litheria”(Reoccurring), murderous Halfling (Reoccurring)
Graltontown Buildings – Mill
Behind the curtain – Yet again I got an encounter and yet again it was a rival adventuring band. It’s not three days in a row but its three out of four which is still riotously unlikely. I’ve been playing RPGs for a long time and it’s interesting how a game that involves so much rolling that should be random ends up forming patterns. I’m sure every gaming table has the guy who always does the right thing but somehow manages to consistently roll well below average – just as surely as there’s the guy who always does something crazy and rolls a 20 every time.