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Recap 78 Supplemental: Historic Battles

March 25, 2017

Tiptoe Through the Potatoes

The Motley Too are still stranded in the past, traveling with the young version of Vain (who it turns out is a composite entity created from the merged essence of the members of the original Motley Crew). They encountered a group of adventurers called Chumley's Chargers - Kurgan, Balin the Brave, Sheila, and Flint Fireforge - that works for Chumley, the wizard that the Too hope will be able to send them back to their own timeline. The Chargers tell the Too that Chumley is in the city of Yokel, but it is under siege by an army of giant evil potatoes and their troops. According to the Chargers, the best way to get past the attacking army is to steal the banner of a potato general named Opperdoezer who is currently known to be staying in the nearby town of Bryn Sturgis.

The Motley Too head to Bryn Sturgis and go to the Cat's Paw tavern. The Chargers indicated the bartender Mehmet is sympathetic to the resistance. Mehmet gives the Too a knowing nod when they enter, and the group take a large table. Also in the tavern is a group of six soldiers wearing dark armor. They glare at the the Too suspiciously, but say nothing. After a short while, the soldiers take their leave.

Soldier: Alright, Mehmet. We'll be back in the morning. You know what to expect.

After they leave, Mehmet approaches the Motley Too. He tells the group that General Opperdoezer has occupied the mayor's house, and that is also where the dark armored soldiers are staying. The house is further protected by a group of ogres. Mehmet knows that the human soldiers have been given some kind of mission, and Mehmet is being forced to equip them with provisions for the trip. They will be departing the town in the morning. It is not known whether Opperdoezer and the ogres will remain in town or if the soldiers will be bringing Opperdoezer's banner with him. After some debate, the Motley Too decide that they have to make a move for the banner now.

The group is still weary after their fight against the potatoes alongside Chumley's Chargers. But Kurtis is relatively fresh, and he is eager to try out the new thieving skills that he's been learning. So he volunteers to travel to the mayor's house alone and steal the banner. The rest of the Motley Too remain at the inn, with some resting and some waiting at the window in case Kurtis needs back-up.

Kurtis makes it down the long road to the mayor's house without being spotted, and sneaks across the courtyard with the aid of a barrel (the ogres on guard, intent on their game of dice, don't notice that the barrel is slowly walking across the yard). Kurtis makes it to a stable on the side of the house. A stench and heavy raspy breathing alert him to the fact that something monstrous is inside. Choosing not to investigate, Kurtis delicately lifts himself to the roof of the stable, moving quietly to not disturb the creature below. Being on the roof of the stable makes it possible for him to reach the windows on the second floor of the mayor's house. Kurtis sees one of the dark-armored soldiers leaning out of one of the windows. He waits until the soldier turns away, and then jumps to the ledge and shimmies along it, bypassing a room where three of the soldiers are drinking and playing cards. Kurtis enters the house via another window, where the fourth soldier is sitting despondently in the dark. Kurtis manages to quietly get out of the room without drawing the soldier's attention. He finds a hallway leading to a staircase, and takes it up to the third floor. There he finds the potato general, who is chanting softly in front of a large book. Kurtis notice a large chest in the corner of the room and stealthily makes his way to it while the potato is seemingly in mystic long distance communication with a superior.

Kurtis opens the chest, and finds the banner amid a pile of coins. Kurtis decides to not risk taking the money, and he manages to quietly extract the banner from the pile and depart the room. He makes his way out of the house the way he came.

The next day, the Motley Too hear the dark-armored soldiers picking up their supplies from Mehmet. There's no indication that they're aware Opperdoezer's banner has been stolen. The soldiers leave Bryn Sturgis, heading east in the general direction of Mangar's Wood. The Motley Too head south, towards Yokel.

Yokel: Break In, Break Out again

As the Motley Too travel, the already oppressive weather in (the land that will eventually be known as) Chumera takes a turn for the worse. The already dark skies turn red, and a pouring rain showers down, turning the ground into a thick mud. As the Too near Yokel, they see the siege forces: humans, thouls, and wyverns organized into divisions led by potato generals. The armies are preparing siege engines for what looks like a final assault on Yokel's city walls.

The Harper of the North prays that the words of Sir Gyles be Undetectable Lies. The party unfurls Opperdoezer's banner and moves forward through the evil forces. At first the troops give the Motley Too a wide berth, but eventually they are challenged.

Potato: Hold! You walk under the banner of General Opperdoezer, but where is the general?

Sir Gyles: We've been sent on an important mission. The master will offer Yokel one last chance to surrender.

Potato: As siege engines approach?

Sir Gyles: That's why we're in such a hurry!

Potato: ...Seems reasonable. Carry on.

When the Motley Too approach Yokel's walls, a hail of arrows from the city's defenders rains down on them. Harper nudges Sir Gyles, reminding him that his prayer is still in effect.

Sir Gyles: We've come to surrender to you!

Archer: Seems reasonable. We accept your surrender. Lay down your arms. We're down coming to take you in.

The Harper: Tell them we've already laid down our arms.

Sir Gyles: I think that'll be a bit much.

The Motley Too refuse to relinquish their weapons, and it's also noted that they're traveling with a Dire Wolf and a strange golem. A Yokel soldier attempts to slash Vain with a pole-arm, but the weapon shatters harmlessly.

Adarra: Hmmph! Balin never said you'd be so rude and stabby when he sent us to you!

Upon hearing that the Motley Too were sent by Chumley's Chargers, the soldiers give them a warmer reception, and someone is sent for. A man arrives holding a lute as if it were a weapon. He introduces himself as Sebastian the Bard, another member of the Chargers, and, in the Motley Too's time, a legendary poet and historian. Sebastian plays a song on his lute. Adarra's wolf, Bone Crusher, cries out in pain. Since only the wolf reacted badly to the song, Sebastian is satisfied that the rest of the group is not evil, and he agrees to take them to Chumley.

The Too are led through the city of Yokel, past desperate soldiers preparing for the final battle and harried-looking townsfolk helping as best they can. They are eventually brought to a building filled with despondent children. In the center of the room is a figure dressed in a black hooded robe. The figure's face is not visible; instead, a soft yellow light eminates from the hood's face hole. The light bathes the group, and then intensifies on Vain.

Sebastian: From what Chumley has learned from you, he has decided not to make his last stand here after all. He now intends to flee with the refugees from Yokel. You will help with this, and in return we will help you.

Sebastian tells the Motley Too that Chumley does not have the power to directly send them forward in time. But he knows of an artifact that is used in Mangar's Training Ground. A magical clock is used as part of a series of tests that the wizard Mangar has set up in a fortress within his woods. The Motley Too can locate the clock and remove the restrictions that Mangar has placed on it. Since the Motley Too are not native to this time period, once the restrictions are removed from the clock, the clock will automatically snap them back to their own time. Sebastian cautions that if the Motley Too actually want to participate in Mangar's tests, they should hold off on removing the restrictions until they have done so.

Regarding the matter of Vain, Sebastian says:

Sebastian: The personalities inside Vain are blissfully dormant thanks to their exposure to the River Styx. But Chumley has reached their minds enough that they will stay at the top of the high tower if you bring them there. Vain will be undisturbed in that place. Chumley will ensure that this Beeblebrox and his allies find him one day.

Sebastian begins to get the refugees ready to flee Yokel, but Kurtis has one more request of him. Kurtis has been searching for a Lute of Charm, which was known to be given to another bard named Aredio. At this point in time, Sebastian has yet to give the lute to Aredio. The Motley Too convince Sebastian that Aredio never made an impact on history the way Sebastian thought that he would, and so Sebastian agrees to give the Lute to Kurtis instead.

The Motley Too help get the civilians of Yokel into a large wagon. Another wagon is prepared as a decoy. The plan is to get the civilians to the nearby Logsend River. A boat is hidden in a patch of woods that will allow Chumley and Sebastian to take the civilians to safety. The Motley Too will escort them to the boat, and then they will part ways.

Adarra uses her druidic power to summon a blast of lighting from the sky, clearing a path in the siege soldiers, and then the group rush out, with Kurtis riding atop the wagon with the refugees.

Sir Gyles: Let's dice these potatoes!

Adarra and Delphine cut off enemy reinforcements using a wall of fire and an ice storm, respectively. But the team deviates from their battle plan due to Jandove's hatred of ogres, which causes her to rush forward and attack.

During the battle, the Harper of the North attempts to use the magic-cancelling (and demi-human cancelling) gem that he acquired from the Orgothic patrolmen some time ago. The gem initially seems to cause the potatoes to stop floating in mid-air, but they then seem to recover. Meanwhile, the gem has a negative effect on his teammates, causing the nearby Wileu's knees to buckle. The Harper puts the gem away. But a potato takes an interest in Harper and moves towards him. Sebastian helps The Harper fight the potato off, strumming chords on his lute as if he were firing arrows.

Things get worse when a pair of wyvern, ridden by thouls, arrive.

Kurtis lets loose an arrow that kills one of the thoul wyvern-riders. Delphine flies up to the other wyvern and attacks it with a Shocking Grasp, jolting the rider and causing him to fall. Adarra begins summoning a wind storm, but warns the team that it will take a while for her druidic spell to be completed. Chumley lends his power to her, speeding up her spell. In the resulting heavy winds, one of the riderless wyverns is blown away. The other is forced to the ground. Forced into melee combat, the wyvern's poisonous tail lashes out and stabs Kurtis. But Kurtis resists, and eventually the wyvern is driven off. The potatoes are also defeated. Sebastian plays a lullaby, causing the now-leaderless remaining troops to become groggy and unmotivated. The party manage to get the refugees to the boat. As they part ways, Sebastian tells the party that the (relative) ease they had defeating the potatoes was thanks to the presence of Chumley, and that it shouldn't make them complacent. The potatoes are normally near-invincible opponents and combat with them should be avoided as much as is possible. Sebastian then casts an enchantment causing the party to glow so that they'll attract the attention of the army while the refugees slip away. The group says goodbye to Sebastian and Chumley.

The Motley Too head east along the river with the decoy wagon. A scream from the sky alerts the party to the fact that they are being pursued by a third wyvern and thoul. But the winds that Adarra summoned keep it from approaching. A lightning bolt from Adarra and a hail of arrows from Jandove and Kurtis slay the beast.

The glow caused by Sebastian wears off, and the group figures that they've played the bait long enough. They take cover in Endripor Woods.

Bluff 'n' Stuff

The Motley Too make camp in Endripor. On Jandove's watch, she is approached by a pair of centaurs. They seem hostile, but she impresses them with her ranger's knowledge. The centaurs offer to guide her party through Endripor for 500 gold. Otherwise the centaurs will call the rest of their tribe and force the party to leave the way they came. Jandove wakes Sir Gyles and the two of them decide to agree to the centaurs' terms. The rest of the party wake in the morning to a meal provided by the centaurs (although the meal provided to the Motley Too's horses seems to be better fare).

As the centaurs are guiding the Too through the woods, the party learns that they have no love for the Great Pumpkin or his potato minions, but they do not get directly involved. As they reach the edge of the woods, the centaurs become tense. Peeking out from the woods, the party sees a group of kobolds arguing with a potato. A centaur points.

Centaur: You see there. The potatoes cause trouble, insisting that the kobolds enter Mangar's Wood, which is forbidden.

The centaurs take their leave. The Too decide to bluff their way through. They unfurl Opperdoezer's banner again, with Harper once more chanting the Lie spell.

Kobold chief: Please, good sir. Our people may not enter the forbidden forest.

Potato: Then you may prove your loyalty another way. Kill these interlopers!

Sir Gyles: Hold! We approach in the name of General Opperdoezer. This potato is a traitor. Help us apprehend him!

Potato: He lies! No potato general would give his banner to be used by mere humans. Kill them!

Kobold chief: We are sitting this one out!

The Motley Too move into attack formation, with Adarra transforming herself into a lion and then doubling in size. Jandove fires special ivory-tipped arrows that she has been saving; they seem to circumvent the potato's natural damage resistance. The rest of the group charge the potato. Kurtis manages to sneak around behind it, stabbing it in the back. The kobolds watch from the sideline, cheering every blow.

Despite Sir Gyles dropping his sword and Kurtis fumbling his sword and injuring himself, the party is able to chop the potato to pieces. The Harper of the North then turns to the kobold chief.

The Harper: Well?

Kobold chief: *kneeling* We didn't realize we were dealing with a traitor. We should have realized when he tried to force us into the woods! Forgive us!

The Harper: Now we are all going into the woods. Together.

Kobold chief: N-n-n-no! It is forbidden!

The Harper: We ARE going into the woods.

Kobold chief: We will not. We prefer death.

The Harper: Very well.

The Harper stabs the chief with his ceremonial dagger. The chief screams in torment, but does not die.

The Harper: Remember this. Now go!

The chief flees, the rest of his tribe following him.

The Motley Too then enter Mangar's Wood. The woods are noticeably different from the nearby forest of Endripor in ways that are hard to specify. And as the group moves north, the woods change further. The wildlife becomes silent. The trees begin to thin and open into a clearing. Oddly, the sky above, which has been overcast or worse the entire time the party has been in Chumera, is blue and sunny. In the center of the clearing is a large building made of pristine marble. It is a combination stronghold/tower.

The Motley Too see a few soldiers at the entrance of the stronghold, trying to open the door. Others are circling the building, looking for another entrance. As the party gets closer, they realize that these are the same six soldiers in dark armor that they saw back in Bryn Sturgis.

Soldier: Aha! Mebbe they know how to get in!

Leader: Drop your weapons!

Kurtis: We're hear to take over. You were sent here over a day ago, and you've failed.

Wileu: Yeah, you're terrible. Opperdoezer would like a word with you. See? He gave us his banner. You're to report back to him.

Leader: This... this isn't fair! It's impossible to get into this fortress.

Kurtis: Oh I don't think that's true. But it's our turn now. Get out of here.

Leader: Very well. We're leaving. But we'll remember your attitude.

Delphine: And we'll remember your stupidity.

The Motley Too then approach the stronghold, and speak the phrase given to them by Sebastian, "Mangar, we submit to your test". The door opens and the party steps inside...

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Tags: Adarra, Alana, Bone Crusher, Brecaryn, Delphine, Flerm, Jandove, Josy, Kurtis, Lieralyn, Malouf, Sir Gyles, Snow, Tala, The Harper of the North, Vain, Wileu

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