Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Folderol Campaign, The Gully Dwarf Chronicles #2

Bodunk blinked a few times and wiped the sleep from his eyes. He didn't remember falling asleep, and he certainly didn't remember it being this dark, or this itchy. He was lying on a thin bed of hay, atop a cold stone floor. He squinted, trying fruitlessly to see better through the darkness. He stood on shaky legs and stumbled a bit as the feeling of pins and needles let him know the blood was flowing in his feet again. The snap and sizzle of a match being lit behind him had him spinning in a circle and reaching for his hammer. Perhaps worse than his still-asleep legs failing him was the realization as he fell flat on his face that his hammer wasn't there.

A human sized figure stood between him and a candle that it had just lit. Bodunk couldn't make out much at all, except that the figure before him was dressed in a black cloak that hid its body and flowed all the way to the ground, and a hood hung low to conceal its face in the shadows and candlelight. As Bodunk stumbled to his feet again, it spoke in a melodic voice that sounded far too soothing to come from such an ominous figure, "Be at ease. I am not here to harm you."

"Where heroes?" Bodunk asked immediately, wondering why he was here without his companions.

"I'm afraid they are not here, little one," the hooded one purred sweetly. "But you should tell me about them. I would very much like to learn more about these heroes. Where did you meet them?"

Cast:
  • Bodunk, gully dwarf bloodrager/slayer (me)
  • Anex, human fighter (Jammie)
  • Athok, goliath warpriest (Andrew)
  • Sjach, spellscale bard (Stetson)
  • Hooded One (NPC)
Even though he was wary of talking to this hooded woman, Bodunk's excitement about his hero friends got the better of him, and he started boasting about how they got started on their adventuring careers. "Guardians good hero group. Good jobs for Guardians. Pick one, do it, get gold. Good gold! Heroes find big gem. Big as me!"

The hooded one smiled, though Bodunk couldn't see it. She was certain she had captured the right gully dwarf. As far as she knew, none of the pathetic creatures had the courage to join the Guardians except this one. She let the dwarf go on without interrupting him.

"Good heroes fast. Left without Bodunk. Bodunk run fast! Heroes travel, get attacked, but Bodunk save them. No good heroes if die on way to Kingsport! Kingsport big city. Big tower in the middle. Heroes need find big big gem. Big as me! Big hero Aflack want go shopping. Shop man mad at Aflack."

The hooded one rolled her eyes, another expression the dwarf could not see. After all this time, the idiot still couldn't pronounce Athok's name correctly.

"Heroes find Shineycat in Kingsport. Satch sing! Bodunk talk to Shineycat. Get good deal. Two gold for job, and Shineycat let heroes stay night at Dog-Wolf Bar! Bodunk genie-us! Sleepy time!"

Shineycat? Satch? Dog-Wolf Bar? The dwarf was butchering nearly every name. For a moment, she wondered if anything he said could be trusted, given his stupidity. Still, his description was matching the story she had been told, more or less. She would just have to get used to him getting details wrong as she tried to coax information out of the idiot.

"Dog-Wolf Bar have good breakfast. Dwarf lady eat with heroes. Dwarf lady say Shineycat no good hero. Bodunk mash him! No, Anex say no mash him. Mash later, maybe."

Bodunk stopped for a moment, his face serious. He was staring at the floor and pounding a fist into his open palm, deep in thought about about the idea of mashing "Shineycat." Just before the hooded one prompted him to go on, a goofy grin came over his face and he looked back up.

"Big tower in city middle! Heroes go find big gem! Big as me! Big tower have two guards, two traps," he said, holding up two fingers on each hand. "Two kitties, too!" He looked down at his hands, wondering how he was going to show her how many cats were in the tower without another hand to hold up. After a moment of confusion, he shrugged and continued.
The chuul was actually a fifth lion.

"Big mean kitties! Bodunk try sneak, but Aflack LOUD. Kitties wake up! Kitties hungry! Try eat Bodunk! Bodunk good hero! Bodunk no good breakfast! Bodunk close gate. Gate make good kitty-shield. Bodunk genie-us!"

The hooded one snickered at how animated the dwarf got as he told this part of the story, his arms flailing around as he pantomimed sneaking across a room and slamming a gate behind him. It seemed clear that Bodunk thought he would be eaten by those lions, and his concern for his life didn't stop there. He went on to describe another level of the tower just above the lions. Even if he wasn't giving her any useful information yet, at least his storytelling was amusing.

"Spiky room next. Big spikes! Big wind! Whoooooooosh! Wind make Bodunk hit spikes!"


At this point, Bodunk was hopping around and acting out his story frantically, as if it was still dangerous and he needed to tell it quickly to get to a safe place. He finally described making it through the trapped room with the wind and the spikes, and he plopped down on the floor, exhausted. "Lady, Bodunk thirsty."

"Of course you are, dear," she purred. She motioned back toward the bed of hay where he had been resting, and he noticed a pail of water on the floor beside it.

As Bodunk guzzled the cool water, he heard the woman behind him murmur a few words behind him that he almost recognized. Magic lady? he thought, as his eyes grew heavy again. Then he fell backwards onto the hay, snoring loudly.
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