We spent the last three days travelling on foot to the town of Hodgeton. Once we arrived in town, Lucien and Kael were able to make some much needed purchases. D.W., Samhein, and I sought out a descent tavern and inn.
After a good night’s rest, we all met at the inn for breakfast. We discussed our options for where we wanted to go next. The search for Rory Davis had not ended. It was just that we did not have enough information as to where he had last gone, just a vague direction. Plus we were short of coin at the moment, so our options were limited.
Someone suggested we get the mules from the stable and just head Northward for now. Each of us looked at the other. When asked who had stabled the pack animals, everyone looked at one another for an answer. Samhein had tied one up at the tavern and Kael left his at the mercantile. They each apparently thought the other had taken care of the poor animals.
We each went out to see if the animals were still there. The one mule was still outside the tavern, but apparently in a most foul mood. As Lucien reached to untie the animal from the post, it tried to bite him. Furious, he pulled out a sword and struck at the beast. Much as I adore the elf, he does have a dreadful temper.
The druid leapt to strike the rogue with the flat of his blade, hoping to deter him from harming the helpless animal. Lucien turned his anger toward the druid who then tried to grab him and hold him still until he could calm himself.
I was torn between healing the animal and healing the rogue. When I realized Lucien was hurt far worse than the mule, my decision was made. He glared at me as I laid my hands on him as he assumed another of us was attempting to battle him. The healing warmth flowed through him to repair his injuries, thus assuring him I meant him well.
Unfortunately, healing him only mended his flesh, not the temper. Lucien was livid with Kael for opposing him. He snapped at him that as a member of the same adventuring group, we are supposed to have one another’s backs. Kael calmly tried to explain that as a druid, he could not stand by and watch an animal be slaughtered without just cause. Neither was willing to compromise on the subject.
Kael used his ability to speak with animals to calm the mule as best he could. The mule brayed repeatedly at him, telling him he was unhappy and hurt. The druid spent quite a few minutes trying to calm the beast before leading him to the mercantile to locate the other mule. Even upon reaching the stable, the unhappy mule was still braying all his woes to Kael who paid the stable keeper to tend both animals.
On his way back, Kael spotted something suspicious down one of the streets. He did a double-take as he realized they were hobgoblins. That was the second time he had seen the creatures in a civilized town. Without further delay, he raced back to find the rest of us. Lucien gave him a look, asking if he was quite certain this time that they were hobgoblins. Kael glared back at him.
As a group, we headed to where Kael had seen them last. He glanced about quickly, then shifted into his clouded leopard form as he searched for proof of what direction they had last gone. As he neared a small house, he peeked inside the window with curiosity. The woman inside was startled and dropped the stack of dishes she held as she screamed!
Instead of waiting for Kael to locate the tracks, D.W. decided to head straight for a warehouse he saw a short ways away <metagaming>. Samhein and I moved closer to him in case he got into trouble, as he is prone to do.
A shutter on the warehouse was thrown open and I felt something bite into my side a second later. I looked down to see an arrow had sliced through my side and nicked me. Before I could be shot again, I hurried up to a pile of lumber to use as cover. Lucien flat out ran to my side to see if I was alright. While it was thrilling to see he cared enough to throw caution to the wind when he saw I was hurt, at the same time, I felt a tremor of fear that he would act so recklessly. The last thing I wanted was for my handsome elf to be injured on my behalf!
Kael found the tracks of the hobgoblins and saw that they were leading to the warehouse. He looked up to tell us, then realized everyone was in motion already. With a roll of his eyes, he raced to catch up with us. He moved around to the side of the building to try to find an entrance. Instead, he found another hobgoblin who sliced into him with a battleaxe. Kael let out a howl of pain.
Samhein cast a spell toward the open window and D.W. fired an arrow seconds before I cast close on the shutter. We waited for the culprit to reopen the window, but nothing further happened. Bored with the lack of activity, D.W. went around the opposite side of the building to see what he could stir up, a nasty habit of his. He did find trouble, but we were unaware of it as he had once again seperated himself from the group.
Lucien hurried around the corner to help Kael after hearing the leopard cry out. I moved around a huge crate to get closer to Kael. Once there, I saw Lucien attacking the hobgoblin. When Kael stepped back, badly injured, I made a snap decision to attack the goblinoid so it would not go after the druid again. Our efforts paid off as our enemy collapsed to the ground.
By then, Samhein had joined us. The main door to the warehouse was on this side of the building. Lucien barked orders to everyone to wait so we could go into the building as a group. He spotted D.W. at the back of the building and told him to hurry over to us. D.W. seemed unable to hear him and had a crazed look upon his face. Giving up on the halfling, Lucien gave the go ahead to us to open the door.
As soon as the door was opened, a spell of some sort went off at the doorway. Kael felt the need to sleep come over him, but just as quickly shrugged it off. He cast a spell of his own and moved into the warehouse with the bear he had summoned in front of him. The bear plunged forward to attack the first hobgoblin it could find.
The rest of us took on the remaining goblinoids, including the spellcaster who was hiding on a pile of crates. It was difficult to move about inside the warehouse, between all the crates and boxes, but we managed. In short order, we brought an end to the lives of this particular group.
Lucien muttered about the lack of teamwork as he looted the bodies. He made some pointed remarks to D.W. about his behavior and general remarks to the rest of us about our lack of organization. I just nodded at him. What else was I to say? He was right. We still needed to learn to act as a team.