[FAL] S43 Heroes of Hallo | Cottaging in the Valley aka The Roleplaying Session

Entry 43

Recap (Entry 42 - The Trees Have It); Storm of Doom: Violet to the left of you and lumbering beast to the right. Into the Valley of Death, I mean, Valley of Safety. Gepeto stuffed into Turb's overalls. Fetra blown away but saved by Cascade throwing her net creating a Fetra-Kite. Pawson swept backward with Peter attempting to save him but also losing his footing. He wrapped a rope around himself as he blew by Mo who dove for the other end - Priestly Hookup engaged!

Turb battling through the wind was able to moonwalk Lenora to the 'safety' of the valley. Everyone made it into the valley to see a barrier of young trees completely blocking their view. Turb announced their entrance to any onlookers and told Sirideán to ready his 'Extinction' Ability. Various members of the group rushed into the woods in different angles.

Glow Bulbs out, pushing through dense foliage and brittle/scratchy branches. It seemed the end was nigh when Cascade realized branches and leaves were getting in her hair! Peter attacked the trees on his way by as Mo and Fetra talked about tying rope around the trees. Is this why one of the tree branches with a fist like tip smoked Cascade? A ways away (everyone went in at different places all spaced apart), another one attacked Lenora and then Mo hugged it yelling, "Treeyee would not approve!" Fetra hid behind a bush too small to hide him, closed his eyes and glowed brightly. Turb said, "Nope, nope." and walked away - Post tree-matic-stress. Peter was confused at the various actions of his party and tried to convince Mo the trees were bad as he ran over to help Cascade, missing and getting thwacked by a treebranch. Mo held his in a firm embrace. Pawson aided Cascade as well. Peter successfully hits the tree a few times but never does any damage while taking a fair amount of harm. Cascade hollers at Turb, "It's not a good night for kites!"

Cascade heavily wounds a tree and Pawson finishes it off. Peter takes a splinter and picks his teeth while mentioning that Mo should kiss the other tree. Turb hollers out, "They must have put some buildings where we came in."

Mo is in an awkward situation with the tree. Lenora tries to help and Mo berates her, "No hojo-treejo!" Peter grabs Mo by his robes and yanks him away while Mo protests (whispering, "Let's go Peter, get us out of here"), "No, the tree! I'll be back one day. No Peter."

Achievement: "You've Got Splinters" to Peter (-1 Harm from wood)


The Heroes of Hallo and Grove; Escapers of the Crazy Maze:

Mo, a deft Human embellisher, er, storyteller
Turb, a strong Human from a farm
Fetra, a witty well-read Human
Sirideán, a cursed and hairy Human
Peter, an alert and gullible Poomkin
Cascade, the vain merchant Swampmerl

Their companions:
Pawson, a very moderate Swampmerl soldier from Grove who owes Peter his life and is afraid of ghosts.
Nuts, a Winged Hairy from an uncharted Isle who likes nuts.... And Ratlings.
Lenora, a young pugnacious Green Elf that Mo doesn't like but she will prove him and her father wrong.

Turb's Gepeto and Mo's Ololo.

Session Start:

Cascade, Turb and Mo level up.

How are we clothed?
Mo - Robes and traveling cloak with his hood up; bandolier of daggers; Sword of Garrol on his back; Poomkin Seed Sword on his hip. Ololo will be on his shoulder in the future.

Turb - Merl overalls; shawl; fish-scale armour; pole-arm slung over shoulder; fishing pole on his back; hair noticeably sticks up. Hiding a gepeto in his overalls.

Cascade - Pretty Quiet Armour; backpack, spear on back; Merl traveling shoes; pink/purple skin colour. Her stiletto and slingstock in her backpack.

Peter - brilliant t-shirt (wordy); ratty pants?; no weapon?

Sirideán - short bow visible

Fetra - scythe

Pawson - crossbow; fish-scale armour; deep purple with red spotted skin.

Lenora - woodworked armour appears as clothes, two wooden blades.

The force of the wind has declined enough the party can move freely but large drops of rain are now smacking down on them. It's velvety dark but they see a house and a flickering light.

A two storey cottage. Peter weebles. The party approaches. Peter wobbles. He drunkenly approaches the house to hear a voice "That's far enough! Lay your weapons down. Flee if bandits or five paces forward if honest travelers."

Peter collapses. Fetra spots three crossbows aimed at the party. The rest of the party stops. and lays down their weapons - Mo pauses, "This'll take a minute." Seed Sword, Sword of Garrol, "All of them?" one by one each dagger, bandolier, hammer, three hatchets. "I think that's everything. Wait..." 5 throwing stars. "If I forgot everything you can say it's at least a good effort."

Cascade stares at the pile of weapons. A chuckle comes from inside the house.

Turb forgets the next instructions and yells, "We did it. Was there some other instructions?"

"Five paces."

"Which way?"

"Forward. Toward the house."

"Wait wait," Mo cries, "First you make me put my children down and then ask me to walk away from them?"

Turb encourages Mo to leave them. Cascade follows, "We're just trying to get away from the killer trees and the wind of doom." Mo puts the Ololo on the pile of weapons and tells it to protect it's siblings.

"Far enough, stand in a line, shoulder to shoulder."

The height issue makes shoulder to shoulder difficult but everyone tries, Cascade hopping up to Turb's height. Mo scrunching down to Fetra's height.

The front door opens and a light is lit behind it and at the window. A man steps out with a heavy crossbow leveled at the party. Turb salutes. A woman steps out with a light crossbow. The man is like an older Turb. Two more crossbows are visible.

Peter drags himself to his feet and starts to swagger forward, "Wait, we didn't knock yet."

Turb notes to the family, "He's drunk." Mo says, "He needs assistance."

"He does not look well. Who are you and what do you want?"

Mo: We are the Heroes of Hallo and we traveled to this great land in our flying boat through clouds of snakes and saved a Grove of Merls from the undead and gained these two (Pawson and Cascade). Thousands of skeletons and such. Two of our friends disappeared and went to this town I can't recall the name of and we're going to find them. On our way we met these Green Elf people who don't respect fine weaponry much and they attacked us because they're not friendly but we're so nice we adopted one. Then the storm blew us off course to here and now we're here. Hallo. Did you get that 'heroes' part?

"Quite a tale."

Everyone looks to see if they have tails.

Believing the group nice, Trovard lowers his weapon and introduces himself, his wife Elmira and his yinglings. He has a few. Brovard, Dorvac (who lower their crossbows), and invites the group inside. The two younger boys Pront and Edvud collect the weapons. Beside the house is a small mound of freshly turned soil with two sticks tied together at one end.

Inside are also Jenta and Lossi the daughters. Turb remembers Peter and helps him inside. Lenora is confused as to why people would live in dead wood. A little disgusted.

Cascade laments she also left her hairbrush with the weapons.

Mo tries to help the boys with the weapons. Trovard distracts him with hospitality. Elmira is warming up some stew.

Mo looks at Lenora trying to communicate. She has no idea that he means she should be ready to fight if things go sour. She interprets some sort of insult and looks like a sad Peanuts character, all pouty.

Turb helps cook, "I can help. I know the food is already dead and cooked. I'm a farmer so I can help." Turb is excited it isn't fish but cow! Yay!

Cascade is less impressed with the smell but remains polite.

Trovard sends his kids who are gawking at the Heroes of Hallo to pull out the worktable for them to sit there so there's enough room for the adults at the main table. The group notes that their weapons have been leaned nicely near the front door in an organized fashion. Mo remains nervous about it and spots his Ololo curled up in his bandolier.

Turb leans Peter on a chair and positions him like gourd company and asks for help. Trovard has Pront get some sticks to hold Peter in position. Peter has a smile on his face and his shirt says "......."

Once the vittles are prepared, everyone sits to eat at the trestle table (kids at the work table) and the heroes have their first prepared meal since Grove and for some the first 'normal' food since before the shipwreck on the Ratling infested island. This is not Cascade nor Pawson's style and they try to hold back their distaste and poke at the food, eating little bits to be courteous, "Is this a Human thing?" she asks Turb.

Trovard looks a little startled and explains the meat is from their Cows and the fixings grown in their garden. He looks perplexed at Cascade's question, "What's a cow?" Turb says, "No one listens to them, they have a moo point." Trovard tries to explain this beast they have that grazes on the land, supplies milk and meat while they ride them when necessary. Cascade is immediately excited by that last thing but while nodding at Trovard doesn't understand anything he's saying.

The vegetables aren't so bad for the Merls however they'd prefer them soggier and more rotted.

The rain comes in force and can be heard battering the roof of this cottage. Thunder crashes but only darkness is seen through the windows.

Turb thanks the family for their hospitality noting that the Heroes got inside just in time.

It's now the party really feels the full weight of what they've been through. Just after midnight. Having missed a night of sleep, fought their way through the Wind of Doom and quarreled with some Thrasher Trees; the party is Worn Out (-2 ACT). Fetra is just Tired (-1 ACT). Turbulant times.

Cascade sneaks to find her brush as the rest settle down (during the attention to Peter) and Dorvoc hands her the brush she sought after with a nervous smile on his face. Jenta keeps checking on Turb to see if he needs more food or drink. Turb shows Jenta the Gepeto and Jenta asks to pet it. Turb is startled... "Maybe try to give him some food." The Gepeto makes strange with Jenta while Jenta tries to impress Turb with her bravery.

Trovard remembers his manners and offers to bless the group and the meal they're eating. Mo's head pops up, "Are you a priest?" and the rest of the party goes wide eyed with Turb and Cascade letting out an, "Oh no!" Trovard points out the shrine in the corner with two sticks tied together with a zipper sweater, a tie, tennis shoes and a walking stick beside it.

Mo explains that the unmoving Poomkin is a Medium Priest and that he himself is a High Priest Emeritus. He stammers a bit and then points out, "Hey Lenora, they're praying to wood." Turb laughs.

Lenora returns, "Dead wood," snarkily. Cascade snickers.

"This is the first time I agree with you," Mo nods.

Cascade leans over to Turb and says, "The dead wood is probably the only wood that didn't attack them!" They grin at each other through all their sore muscles from this trek.

Trovard offers to have Mo give the prayer to Rodger for their food, his family, the party's travels and his lost boy.

"Wait," Mo asks perplexingly, "Who's Rodger?"

Trovard points at the shrine, "Y'know, Rodger...."

Mo, "Copy that.... No. I don't know Rodger Dodger or Roger Roger? Uh, Peter? Uhm, No uh, I think it's a different denomination."

"Oh," Trovard says, "If you don't mind then, - Oh venerable Roger, bless this food we eat and the hands that prepared it and those that partake in it. Help it to sustain us and these new people to find safety and this town they're looking for and their friends they have lost and of course my young son Beyot. That one day he will be found. Amen."

Cascade asks, "Does everyone in your neighborhood know Rodger?"

Trovard answers, "Everyone needs to know the good word of Rodger. Our prayers pierce his dreams and can be made reality."

Cascade retorts, "So, what you're saying is that in Mr. Rodger's Neighborhood, the dreams you guys have can become reality?"

Edvud pulls out his toy trolley.

Turb asks if tomorrow will be a beautiful day in the neighborhood? Trovard responds that it should be after the storm passes, "Won't you be mine?"

Trovard apologizes for the plain food and says they will have a better meal next time.

Turb eats and drinks a lot. Like contest winning eat-a-thon.

Trovard asks the party their names as Mo has already explained where they came from and where they're going.

Cascade introduces herself, "I was once a Merl trader and would gather fun stuff to sell to Humans for what her village needed. Now she can't because she took up traveling with these guys." She pats Turb on the shoulder. "

Trovard questions her a little, seeming relieved that she's here of her own free will. Cascade notes that she's still getting to know some of the group and that they're adding new members all the time - looking at Lenora.

Grumpy Lenora introduces herself. Fetra is reading a book. Sirideán is uncharacteristically quiet. Perhaps he's worried about leaving Nuts outside.

Turb says "Hey, I'm Turb. I used to be a farmer and now I kill things and fish. I guess."

Trovard asks what Turb kills and Turb responds that it's a self defense thing... Except trees. Turb doesn't fight trees.

"Part of the reason we built here was the protection of the Thrasher Trees to keep bandits at bay. Otherwise we're fairly exposed and alone and the fight of those trees keeps us safe. We have been attacked in the past."

Turb and Cascade sympathize and Cascade asks why they attacked, theft or murder?

With a dour look Trovard explains that it is at times just bandits or beggers or those who want to see the world burn but one time they came for the children and these zealots took my young Beyot only leaving us the words, 'The Last Human.'

Turb asks about the burial mound beside the house, wondering to Cascade if that's what they say and Cascade nods, mmm-hmm...

"Oh, that was Reggie. He was a good boy. Killed by those zealots in cloaks with wild eyes."

Turb inquires more but Trovard has little else to offer. Turb gives his sympathies.

Cascade wonders where they went and at best Trovard thinks they went to the mountains. East or North-East. Trovard is ill at ease. "I had to make a choice of following or protecting the family still here."

Edvd exclaims that he would have chased them down and one day when he's old enough he'll become a sellsword like the party and find them. Trovard has a ghastly look on his face.

Turb tries to calm the table down, "Or you could become a farmer. Farming is pretty cool."

A baby cries. Elmira goes into the other room on this floor and surprise surprise comes out with a baby named Tenna. She has a baby blanket.

Cascade makes the traditional Awwwwww!

Trovard asks if the party has any stories that might help the children get back to bed. Turb looks at Mo and says, "Gee, I don't know."

Cascade conspires to tell stories that will scare Edvd from being an adventurer. Turb wonders aloud about all the times they've almost died. Cascade DID die once and pointing at Mo says, "If it wasn't for him I wouldn't be around."

"If it wasn't for Peter; I think all of us would pretty much be dead." - Mo

Turb makes creepy finger waves and goes Ooga Booga saying Cascade is now undead!

Edvd is taken aback.

It is now the party realizes Nuts is not with them.

"Well, it's late," Trovard starts, "your arrival was odd to us which is why you had a rough greeting. We were not expecting you. Are you traveling again tomorrow?"

Turb asks if the party can rest here and Trovard apologizes that there isn't any room in the house but they may stay in the barn. There is lots of hay.

Turb yawns ands says that is sounds like home. Trovard offers to get the party settled. He grabs a lantern from the wall and tells the boys to put the fire.

Turb questions about their weapons.

"Of course, please take all your belongings on your way out."

As the party picks up their gear, it hits them how comforted they've been by the company of this family and the food along with not carrying all their burdens for a little while.

Turb specifically goes and clasps Elmira's hands, "That is the best meal I've had in so long dear lady, thank you," causing her to blush and look down at her apron with a kind smile.

"Do Poomkins get soggy?" Turb carries Peter to the barn. Lenora grabs Fetra, who was reading his book and in no way notices, and escorts him to the barn gruffly.

Trovard leads the party to the large barn.

Cascade rushes to one of the tenants, "Oh this is a cow!"

There are multiple cows in stanchions, a bullpen, calfpen, a couple rooms and two stabling areas with larger cows.

Trovard alerts the party how to secure the main doors and asks if they have any questions.

"Can I sleep up against a cow?" Turb asks, "Are they friendly?"

Trovard indicates they don't all have the same demeanor but warns that the bull is specifically ornary. Turb immediately approaches the Bull who turns toward him with pointy horns, strong muscles and wild eyes. Everyone is on edge except Cascade who had previously only seen crop farms. She watches intently all wide-eyed and wondering what will happen. [sidenote: The bull has +1 Brute and +2 HP]

Turb coos, "Who's a good boy?" and the Bull immediately rubs it's head against Turb's hand. A new friend has been made. "Oh you're such a strong boy. Go to sleep, we won't harm you."

Noting the lead-line hanging in the bullpen Turb wanders to some straw to sleep on. He didn't notice the man-sized door in the Bullpen leading outside.

Mo hugs Trovard mistaking him for a tree, "Do you have any oils for metal and some dry rags?"

Trovard points out the room beside the bullpen and then bids everyone a good night letting them know breakfast will await them in the morning.

Turb suggests as he pats the straw into a pillow that they bar both doors. Cascade gathers straw to make a nice bed near the calfpen and plops down.

As no one else acts, Turb gets up and bars both double doors into the barn (not knowing about the smaller doors in each corner -calf pen and bull pen). Then he settles against the bullpen.

Fetra is sitting with a book and it's hard to tell if he's reading or sleeping. Sirideán takes off all his clothes and sleeps spread eagle in the middle of the barn. Peter is slumped on the floor. Lenora is clearly uncomfortable, sitting not far from Fetra. Her knees are pulled up with her hands wrapped around them. She looks around troubled.

Mo's Ololo looks healthy and actively slides around the barn floor. Turb's Gepeto ignores the bull and curls up on top of Turb.

Mo investigates the tack and harness room, finding some oil and rags for his weapons. He dries them all and oils them; even using a sharpening stone. Finally going to sleep near Peter's slumped form.

He ignores the pails, jute rope, sacks, pitchforks and such, just doing his work before sleep.

Cascade gets up, shivers and looks around for a blanket. She notices the two rooms for larger cows that has blankets and some leathery materials. She asks Turb what they are. Turb stretches and whisper-yells that it's stuff for cows, not wanting to disturb the gepeto. Cascade, unsure about the cows, settles back down and tries to get warm with just the straw.

Turb looks up from her gepeto and notes to Cascade, "I bet you saw riding gear for those cows."

Cascade sits up wide-eyed, "You can ride'em?"

Turb repeats, "You can ride 'em."

Cascade shakes with excitement and struggles not to move from her warm stack of hay... or straw.... They have no idea which it is. "Ooooooo, I want to ride a cow tomorrow!"

The storm as still going as everyone falls asleep.

Sirideán goes into a trance.

Suddenly two crashes wake up Mo, Turb, Cascade and Lenora. The rest (including Pawson are asleep still).

"Those weren't thunderclaps!"

Turb pushes the gepeto onto the hay and asks, "Did that come from inside the barn?"

"That's not a normal sound?" queries Cascade.

Turb responds, "My farmer senses are tingling."

Mo looks around and spies Fetra who still looks like he's reading a book and thought that might be the case until he heard him snore.

Mo and Turb are certain that wasn't thunder and no storm sounds are happening.

Cascade knowingly exclaims, "It sounds like it came from their house. Is that a Human thing too?"

Turb arms himself and goes to unbar the double-doors toward the house. Cascade goes to help and Lenora approaches them. Mo jumps up, pulls two daggers and stands over Peter.

Cascade sees through the seams of the doors and squeals, "Giant lizard... With Spikes on it's head and a giant pokey stick!"

Turb utters plainly, "That's new."

Cascade continues, "They don't look happy or friendly or well rested."

Turb rolls his eyes, "I feel that."

That is true, everyone is worn-out and is -2 ACT.

Our Heroes:
Mo Summary (votes for Turb - Turbulance joke) 2XP
Turb 'MVP' Animal Tech (votes for Mo about the creative group origin story) 2XP
Cascade Dreams of Riding a Cow (votes for Turb - Turbulence joke) 2XP
Peter's Away
Fetra's Away
Sirideán's Away