Friday 29 August 2014

Burrows of the Dwarves

If one was (un)lucky enough to find an abandoned Stone Dwarf burrow, or else had conquered one by incredible military prowess, what would they find?


A great airlock, sealed by huge reinforced discs of the hardest local stone. If there is not a suitable material available locally, huge expenditure will be made to import the very best. The tight walls of the tunnel connecting to the airlock are riddles with holes - these being placed for the militia of the poor to pelt invading Nightmares with missiles. These holes are barely enough for the weapon of choice, discouraging individuals attempting to look upon the Nightmares - this is the sole burden of the Dream Wardens. This central passage will be a veritable death-trap with several false passages. These traps are activated as the Dream Wardens advance to defend the entrance - there is no retreat for this line of defence. The militia tunnels lead directly to the slums where the Dwarven poor rub shoulders with the proud Dream Wardens. This layer is collectively known as the 'Qhywt.'

Eventually, an explorer or soldier would run into a second airlock. This would be defended by the commanders and veterans of the Dream Wardens, as a last ditch defence against invaders.

The Qhywt Proper (The Up)

The Up is an approximation of an urban sprawl in negative space - streets are wide tunnels connecting places worth going. Often lesser-used areas will only be connected by one-way passages, forcing the unfortunates to clamber atop each other. Dream Wardens, on the off chance they are in these tunnels, are always allowed to climb atop others, out of reverence for their sacrifices above and beyond the common Dwarf. Dwarves share space freely - there are simply communal dorms where those who need sleep do so. Personal wealth - what little those living in the Qhywt have - is carried about the person. Stone Dwarves do not steal from each other.

Rot Farms

The staple crops of Stone Dwarves are fungi, which are intensively farmed in the Rot Farms, huge expanses of decaying organic matter. A significant portion of this material is the Rock Dwarven dead - Stone Dwarves feel no guilt about this use of their cousins, simply viewing it as the way of things. The variety of fungi are huge, and they are simply allowed to grow where-ever they please, leading to a strange chaos of otherworldly structures nestled in the decaying mass of the dead. Rot Farm workers are incredibly respected.

Water Catchment

Burrows in porous areas filter the water trapped and filtered by the surrounding stone into huge clay bowls which are then piped around the burrow. This water is seen as a gift of the mountain. Non-porous rock areas general pump water from underground sources, though some tap into mountain streams unknowingly, thinking instead they have tapped into hidden, stony veins.

Dream Warden Barracks

Dream Wardens are completely convinced of their duties to the Stone Dwarven society, even more than the average member of the culture. When not on active duty they train near relentlessly, attempting to achieve martial perfection. The Dream Wardens are also responsible for training the crossbow militia made up of the populace of the Qhywt, and significant time is spent doing this.

The Tak (The Fall)

Behind the second airlock is a huge vertical shaft, which runs down the the Darln, the central district of the burrow. Movement between the levels is achieved via a huge cargo elevator, which moves excruciatingly slowly. Most Tak journies will take 6 hours, though this speed will vary depending on how the elevator is powered - most are muscle powered, with teams of dwarves working at the mechanism, though some advanced burrows utilize water or even steam (generated via geothermal heating) The mechanism is located nearby, in the Qhywt.

The Darln Proper (The Seat)

The Tak leads to the centre of the Darln, meaning any given area contained within this immense space is equidistant from the Tak. The entire Darln is mined out, buildings being pre-planned long ahead of time. Endless bridges and walkways connect the various stone buildings of the Darln, and ornamentation derived from the wealth of the earth is spread liberally throughout. All Dwarven industry beyond basic farming occurs here, meaning the fumes from various processes congeals and roils around at the top of the Darln, slowly bleeding out through the stone. In a significant number of older burrows, these clouds react with the condensation of living creatures to create rain showers, giving these burrows a distinctive weathered look despite being entirely sheltered from conventional weather.

At the bottom of the Darln is yet another airlock, the Kyrl (The Divide). This one puts the defences of the Qhywt to shame, with multiple metal layers and mechanisms to ensure there is no accidental opening. This is done to keep out those that lurk in the deeper dark below the burrow, oft disturbed by the miners. This area is collectively known as the Knurl.

The Knurl (The Deep)

Only the hardiest of Dwarfkind live in the Knurl - exclusively the territory of the military, who also function as miners when not performing military actions. The Sapper-Spearmen continuously dig out from the main base in the Knurl, establishing outposts and important spots. If a natural or foreign tunnel is broken into, the Delvers immediately set up a mobile head-quarters at the breech and begin scouting heavily, the base defended by a considerable cadre of Sapper-Spearmen.

The tunnels of the Dwarves are incredibly precise and uniform, marked in simple Dwarven script to make navigation easier. Their underground fortifications are truly formidable, bristling with steel and a collective memory of stubborn defiance against attackers.

Supplies and raw materials are exchanged every two weeks, utilizing the Kyrl. These exchanges are completed as rapidly as possible minimizing the risk of enemy forces getting into the Darln.

Tuesday 26 August 2014

LotFP Writeup 4.3

We left off with the party riding hard out of the now-diseased town, laden with loot from the late enchanter. Tesco's maniacal laughter cuts through the air as we start once again.


The first order of business, of course, was to check the loot. Items of note included no less than 2 spell books in addition to a ring which detected as magical to Tesco's assisted sight. He quickly donned the ring and scanned through the books, hungry for the knowledge within. To his surprise, the biggest find was a variation on his beloved Summon which claimed to have a superior method of empowering the spell via sacrifice - as long as the victim was human. Milk was entirely unaware of this as he continued with his scrolls.

Meanwhile, the rest of the party decided that striking out north was the best plan - leaving the Red Duchy entirely and seeking adventure in the Republic of Seled, about a weeks travel at their current speeds. This journey, however, would involve 2 days in the dangerous wilds between the two states, wherein roam peoples and other things outside the writ of law.

With the initial rush of flight behind them, the party had an eventful days travel, choosing to rest the night rather than exhaust themselves. This un-eventfulness continued for the next couple of days until they awoke to notice something unusual near the clearing - a squat, square stone building, lacking windows with a collapsed doorway. Seeing no obvious signs of habitation, Tesco and Gutch proceeded on to the puzzling, isolated structure whilst Milk, Pepper and James stood guard over the horses. Doing a circuit around the building, our brave pair found a large crack in the rear wall. Peering in, they could see debris and think, undisturbed dust. Lighting the lantern, they began searching the ruin. After a good twenty minutes searching, they had only discovered three things - a trapdoor leading down, a wide set of stone steps and an unceasing scratching above them. Weapons ready, they decided to check above them.

The were met with a grim scene - the entire floor was covered in the corpses of the long-dead in what appeared to be some sort of church hall. The bodies were little more than withered husks wrapped in near-entirely gone rags. Searching through the bodies, Tesco was unable to find any trauma or obvious causes of death. Meanwhile, Gutch set about checking the walls for any obvious discrepancies. He first realised that the room was slightly smaller than the entire building - meaning the walls have extra thickness, or a hollow space behind them. The latter was quickly shown to be true, as well as seemingly being the source of the scratching. A glance was shared, and the pair began battering the wall to try and make some sort of opening. After a considerable degree of effort, a single stone was pried lost, but was immediately replaced by a bony hand gripping the stone below it, attempting to tear it away.

Milk and Pepper looked up idly from their guard, hearing their companions charging back towards the clearing, yelling about skeletons. Milk sighed, and continued working on his scroll whilst Pepper girded himself for a fight. It was not long before their bony foe was upon them. Whilst individually weak, Pepper was seriously wounded by one of the creatures before the fight was through. Taking a moments rest, Tesco, Pepper and Gutch returned to the room from whence their foes had emerged. Once there, they discovered that the hollow space was filled with ancient bones and a choking dust. After recovering from said dust, they decided to venture into the basement levels.

Pepper elected to stay above the trapdoor whilst the other two plumbed the depths. Once they had descended, they were met with a strange corridor - three pairs of wattle-and-daub discs set into the walls. These discs were incredibly obvious against the stonework of the corridor. Brandishing his 10' pole, Gutch jabbed the nearest disk, punching a hole clean through it. A femur protruded from the hole. Gripping it, he then pulled the femur loose, unintentionally enlarging the hole to the point where a considerable portion of the contents spilled out - a great pile of bones was now in the corridor, in addition to the choking dust from before.

Once the dust had settled, Gutch and Tesco pushed on to the end of the corridor - a flight of stairs, turning to the right. They advanced to the bottom of the stairs, and were met with a similar corridor. Once again, they pushed through, but the room at the end of the corridor was very different - a simple stone room, with an altar set in the centre. Topping the centre was a fore-arm sized golden idol. Tesco decided this was an obvious trap, and left Gutch to his fate. Gutch saw the idol. He wanted the idol. He wanted it bad. He ran his palms over the entire room, and could not find either mechanism nor switch. He couldn't see a pressure plate on the altar. Bracing himself, he snatched the idol and began sprinting as hard as he could towards the exit. He heard a smashing, whirling, crushing sound behind him. He kept going. As he passed the second pair of discs, the same sound and feeling. Tesco, however, could see the the scene play out - the bones contained behind the discs burst forth, meeting with their counterpart on the other wall, forming terrible pillars of writhing bone and debris. Gutch cleared the third, seconds before the bones flew forth. He glanced over his shoulder, and saw the terror he had narrowly avoided, idol still clutched to his chest.

Tesco had already moved to the trapdoor, and was yelling for Pepper to lower a rope to pull them up. Gutch meanwhile was nearly caught in the second pillar, narrowly avoiding it thanks to Tesco yanking him into the inert pile of bones by the first pillar. The both grabbed onto the rope whereupon Pepper pulled them up to ground level. They fled, golden idol clutched tight.

The rest of the day was spent nervously glancing at roadsides for skeletal pursuers, which consistently failed to materialise. Similarly, the night was spent unmolested by gleaming bone figures. The next days travel saw them break out of the denser forest into grassland, a river running far away to their left. Ahead of them sprawled a larger village, which they moved into.

In the small, rough alehouse our party spied a similar group - a large man with a ponderously massive hammer, upon which he rested his chin. He was accompanied by twins, equipped in lighter leather armour and more reasonably sized weapons. The entire trio seemed incredibly glum, and so our oh-so-kind group decided to cheer them up by interrogating them on the cause of their sour mood. Upon being questioned, the huge man (later identified as Rolf) left for his room. The twins explained that up until very recently they were Rolf and the Triplets - their brother having been lost in a dungeon about 3 hours travel to west, by the river. They went on to describe how their over-cautious brother had taken out a wall which stopped the river flooding the structure with his 10' pole. They gladly gave our group directions to the place, happy that someone might profit from their misadventure.

Tesco felt it best to seek out hired help for this escapade, preferably someone with experience regarding working with water. What he found was Vim, professional hireling and die-hard survivor. A short, wide commoner who most notably carried ten one foot poles which could be assembled into a single pole - a useful tool in any dungeon. Whilst not a combatant, he could combine the roles of several potential retainers into a general dogsbody. Tesco warmed to him immediately and hired him at a fifth-share of all loot.

The now-enlarged party assembled, they set forth for the entrance to the semi-flooded dungeon, ensuring they were not followed. The entrance was as described - a raised stone square, easily clambered atop with stairs set directly into the middle, leading down into damp darkness. Vim was given the lantern in addition to his poles, and so the intrepid adventurers plunged once more into darkness.

Wednesday 20 August 2014

LotFP Writeup 4.2

Part 2 of the two day session. We carry on straight after the previous entry. Consider this a reminder that players will destroy everything you love and wear the corpse.


Whilst finalising their plans, the party decided to take the caravan and rest for the night, ensuring they were fully ready for the town. During Milk's watch, he spied a party of figures wielding heavy crossbows heading towards town - the remnants of the party they had murdered. In the morning, they discussed how best to deal with this issue - they would claim their companions were lost in combat against the hellish insect.

The plan agreed, they party felt it best to split - Milk and James would stay outside of town, hidden from sight in the tree-line. Meanwhile the other three would set about 'improving' the town and collecting their reward. Milk set about two endeavours in this time - fashioning himself a new mask from the skull of the king as well as creating a healing scroll for emergencies. The first order of business, as responsible members of society, was to report the terrible attacks occurring on the Northern road. After being directed about by the various inept guards, they finally came to the head of the town watch, whom they showed the artfully blood-stained clothes of the murdered merchant to. The walrus-like figure bristled and harrumphed, and promised to reward them with food for several weeks travel if they were to return with proof of the dead creature.

This first piece of business done, the terrible trio then moved on to the enchanters tower, and re-bribed one of the guards to skip the considerable line of visitors. They were seen quickly, their employer all-too eager to get his hands on the artefact. However, they also decided to try and pawn the ornate chain-mail the long-dead king had been wearing. Rather than money, however, Tesco attempted to barter for one of the mage's tomes. Using a degree of trickery and underhanded mercantile tactics, Tesco left with a slim black tome rather than his share of the reward money. The mage let them out of his tower, obviously worried.

With payment for previous work secured and future payment ensured, the away-team retired to the camp-site outside of the town once they recovered the chest stashed in the tavern. Milk insisted he was undisturbed, still working away with his scrolls. The carefully chosen camp-site allowed the party vision of the road whilst hiding them from the town itself, which led to them seeing a messenger atop his horse milling around on the road, calling out for them. Tesco padded closer, hiding in the foliage, before popping the horse-and-rider with a sleeping enchantment. Both of them fell, the initial fall breaking the riders leg under the weight of the horse, leading to both of them waking in immense pain. At this point, the horse went wild, began bucking and kicking, ruining the leg underneath it and smashing the other leg to pieces. To add to this, the horse then ran away, trampling the already broken and twisted rider, who was now screaming from the veritable pulping of his legs.

Containing his giggling, Tesco called Pepper and Gutch over to help him drag the unfortunate to town. En route, the barely-a-man messenger lost consciousness, leading to the group hatching another devilish scheme. The instead took him back to camp, laying him down in the centre. The party then manhandled the bug's head to stab the injured teenager to death with the mandibles. His final moments were the vision of a terrible beast's mandibles plunging into his battered form whilst the party critiqued the technique chosen to stab the young man to death. His body was horrifically mutilated by this treatment, leaving a broken and cut-apart corpse. The plan was to return this body to town as further signs of their battle with the terrible beast. Whilst formulating this plan, they finally decided to check the body - they took his final paycheck as well as a message addressed to them - the resident enchanter had further work for them. Tesco decided to descend further into deviousness, and began formulating schemes most foul regarding this information.

The tame environs surrounding Midtown led to an uneventful  night, meaning our party were fully refreshed for the trickery to come. Milk and James were left at the camp-site, but told to have everything ready incase they needed to leave in a hurry. Milk busied himself with his scrolls - apparently having real trouble transcribing a healing prayer to his liege, Death itself. And so our three bastards rolled into town, bearing the head of a great insect and the broken body of an eighteen year old, legs smashed and body slashed and stabbed by great mandibles. As they rode into town, a great weight pressed itself upon the population, leading to a bleak exchange. The populace openly mourned the loss of the messenger to the beast, and in an incredibly (calculated) rare show of generosity, the group donated the reward-rations to the family of the boy.

With this done, they moved on to their next port of call - the enchanters tower. Today there was no queue bar the visiting nobles, and so the party waited for their turn. The enchanter was at first delighted to see the party, but Tesco quickly killed this vibe by berating the mage for sending the messenger to his death. The mage was horrified and his guard disgusted. Tesco was relentless in his assault, driving the mage into the blackest of moods. Tesco suggested he accompany the mage to his room, and that they attend the promised work at a future date. Once they were alone upstairs, Tesco pinned the enchanter down, and demanded to know what the book had done to him. The mage was too terrified to speak, and attempted to call out. Tesco flexed, and snapped the poor man's neck there and then. He then moved quickly, constructing a basic noose and hanging the already-dead magic user, attempting to make the death appear self inflicted. He then pilfered some small items from the room before rejoining the rest of the group, most notably a jewellery box and a letter detailing the work they had been promised.

 After talking in a lowered tone to the guard for a while, he suggested the guard take a drink up to the deeply upset magician. Whilst the guard moved to do this, the party exploded into action. Tesco began shoving books into his back, Gutch selectively picking up small items of worth whilst Pepper swiped everything atop the desk into a task. (For his effort, he was rewarded with several open pots of ink, spoiled paper, broken quills, a blank book, some candles, an open bottle of drink, a half-eaten meal and a cutlery set.) This on-the-spot larceny done, the party began to leave the tower until they heard the yells of discovery above. They dashed up the stairs, Tesco faking surprise whilst the other two were genuinely surprised by the news of the mage's self-inflicted end.

The next thirty minutes passed in a blur whilst the town watch were brought in, the party questioned but ultimately washed of any blame. The party returned to the tower once they stashed the ill-gotten goods, several hours later. Thus began the Rude Guard Incident, which would result in the destruction of an entire town.

The gang approached the guards posted around the tower. Tesco proclaimed himself the research assistant to the late enchanter. The guard pointedly told him to fuck off. Tesco attempted to press his claim, but was stonewalled entirely. Frowning, Tesco stormed off, forming a plan to ruin the guard. Permanently. Pepper left, wanting no part in this revenge but not feeling moral enough to do anything about it. Gutch stuck around because he thought it would be kinda funny. Tesco and Gutch took cover in a nearby alley, watching the guard. A great deal of time past before the guard retired to the tower, emerging without his armour or weapon. Gutch and Tesco shadowed him back to his moderate family home. Tesco hid towards the back of the house, rolling up his sleeves for magic. Gutch ran the fuck away at this point, having clocked the plan.

The joy of the family re-united was disturbed by the sound of reality itself being rent asunder, letting a dweller from the Sea of Chaos from outside of reality punch it's way into our world. A horrific thing made of decay, rot and pestilence, carrying plagues and equipped with a blasphemous machine. It set about the family, tearing them to pieces and spreading it's diseased rot about the house. The guard died trying to defend his family unsuccessfully. No-one escaped the house, but neighbours began running towards the sounds of ripping, grinding and screams. Tesco left, his face split by a malicious grin like no other.

Gutch left late enough to hear a commotion, and figured thinning the ranks of the town guard would be a good idea. He approached the gate which separated him from the rest of the party, and called to the guards about some sort of trouble further into the town. The guards dashed off into town to investigate. Meanwhile, a similar scene played out at the enchanters tower, the skeleton crew of private guards being convinced by Tesco to help with the disturbance further into the town. Once this was done, Tesco slipped into the tower, and plundered again the books and valuable items, including the ornate chain-mail he had sold earlier that day. His looting complete, he dashed out of the town, meeting the party already saddled up to leave. They rode into the night hard.


At this point, I rationalized an Organic Rot Demon which causes disease on touch would probably leave trails and ichor around the house, ensuring the disease would spread throughout the town, probably wiping out the majority of the population of Midton - unlike a real disease, a Demonic Disease would probably kill most hosts. This habit of destroying towns was not over, however.

Thursday 14 August 2014

LotFP Writeup 4.1

Played a huge session over the course of a couple of days this week, so I'll break it up for readability. They truly outdid themselves in terms of being terrible terrible human beings. The dungeon they started last session and finished last session was The Burial Mound of Esur the Red, available freely here. We rejoin our 'friends' underground.


Our band of miscreants stood in a dank corridor, breathing heavily. They were surrounded by a field of bones, smashed and beaten. Pepper shook with the adrenaline dump of his near-death experience. They looked at each other for a long moment, and left the burial mound to rest up, taking careful care of the trap they had discovered. With the help of James, they got comfortable settled down to rest. Night came upon them, and the first watch passed uneventfully. The second watch was a different matter.

It took awhile for Gutch to notice it - a pale glow, getting stronger slowly, leading into the mound. Perturbed by this, he kicked his companions awake, pointing out the oddity. Upon closer inspection, they could begin to make out figures within the light, sporting arms and armour. As they marvelled at this sight, they also noticed a further trail leading round to the side of the mound, leading to the thus-far-undiscovered hidden entrance. Throwing caution to the wind, Gutch began jabbing at it with his 10' pole, yelling about someone grabbing a shovel.

Milk, however, was pre-occupied - he felt the brush of his patron's shadow pass over him, and so saw a solitary figure moving beyond the main group. A single spirit, marching further 'round the mound than the others. Wordlessly, he followed, Pepper in tow. Gutch and Tesco had at their find with shovels , excavating an entrance into heretofore unexplored areas under the mound. Milk witnessed his ghostly quarry walk through the back of the mound, passing through the earth without resistance nor effort. He briefly pondered on this before driving his ancient glowing sword into the side of the aforementioned earthworks. As Pepper looked on bemused, he proceeded to wiggle the point of the sword around - in doing so, he realised the last half-inch of his blade was not surrounded by earth. Feeling the need to do something other than watch, Pepper thwacked the tomb with his mace. Whilst satisfying, this was sadly unproductive.

Having excavated their entrance, Tesco and Gutch realised their companions were elsewhere, and wandered over to assess their discovery. And so they elected to dig out this entrance too, leaving the other untouched and un-plundered. They made quick work of what now revealed itself to be a second hidden entrance, leading to a set of downwards stairs. As the final shovelful was shifted, Pepper felt a terrible coldness run over and through him, leaving him untouched. Despite his enclosed armour, his allies could tell he was thoroughly disturbed, though his explanation was not forthcoming. Still enthused by the mystery of the entrance, the party pressed on into the darkness below the mound.

They came to the end of the stairs, having bristled with long poking implements on the way down. They saw a monolithic stone door to their right and a small dais leading to an altar. Atop the altar was a carved symbol, depicted twin crossed axes wrapped about with chains. They felt it wise to investigate the altar before pressing on, not wishing for any surprises in the case of a hasty retreat. They moved with incredible caution, the most recent dais-related experience still fresh in their minds. After some thorough investigation, however, they could find nothing untoward. And so they moved on to the door.

They pushed the door open, watching intently for anything to come flying at them out of the darkness, ears straining for the mechanical click of a trap being triggered. Nothing greeted eye nor ear. They took their first hesitant steps in, taking in the plain room marred only by the heavy stone sarcophagus in the dead centre of the space. The lid was carved intricately with a crowned skeleton, gripping a mighty blade, standing atop the crushed bodies of many an elf. Giddy with excitement, the physically unimpressive Tesco shoved the lid off, causing it to fall and smash into three large chunks, and revealing the contents - a chain-clad skeleton, crown upon the damaged dome and studded black ring upon the chest.

Moving quickly, Tesco began his soon-to-be-familiar reaction to corpses - he struck the head from the greater skeleton with his shovel. In doing so, he disturbed the ring, which fell into the sarcophagus. Though most of the party lost sight of it, a Gutchensmark is made of smarter stuff. Gutch palmed the ring as it rolled into the container, avoiding notice and Tesco began posing with his new found crown. Pepper quickly shook the skeleton out of his new chain-shirt whilst Milk eyed up the skull of this ancient king. A hole had been punched into the dome, just above the temple. Milk came to the conclusion it would make a fine new mask despite this and stashed the skull in his pack. After a brief episode in which Gutch was complimented into returning the beard-ring, the group decided to attempt to return to sleep before returning to the town of Midton.

The rest of the night passed uneventfully, and the team sallied forth without issue. This was a trend which continued for the first day and night. This peace was to be quickly disturbed, however, as they approached the final leg of their journey to Midton - they heard the sound of battle ahead on the trail. They approached carefully, piles of heavy crossbows readily available. They were met with a desperate scene - the creature which had mercilessly killed one of their horses scant nights back was doing battle with a trio of caravan guards, the caravan itself left to the side. They spied a merchant cowering within the wagon, too afraid to fight or flee. As they deliberated on their best actions, one of the guards was snatched up in the green monstrosities terrible mandibles, before being cleanly snipped at the torso. The man died screaming. One of his companions took this opportunity to strike the creature, burying his blade deep within the gut of the only half-submerged burrower. He was rewarded for his efforts by a mighty gout of digestive fluids, which eradicated him utterly. Sensing victory, Pepper and Tesco let fly with the crossbows, finishing their horse-stealing foe. Meanwhile, Tesco moved to ransack the still-occupied caravan, and a good haul too - a selection of fine silks. Milk approached the relieved guard, who turned to thank his saviours with open arms - and was met with steel. His final visions were that of Milk, face obscured by the skull of those long-dead, the looted great-sword embedded in his sternum.

As this was going on, Gutch was befuddled by a small box, no doubt some form of coinage-container. Finding himself frustrated by the thing, he tossed it to James angrily to batter the key out of the merchant. Whilst the mercantile traveller was menaced at sword-point, James set about trying his hand at lock-picking. To everyone's surprise and Gutch's delight, the box sprung open to his needle-assault. It was loudly proclaimed that James was now one of them.

The merchant was decapitated in short order, the team having already begun to formulate plans - they would present the bloodstained, torn clothes of the merchant as proof of the dangers of the gigantic insect they had now slain. Having secured the promise of suitable reward, the party would then turn in the head of the creature for said reward, in addition to the renown it would bring. Despite having abused the populace, they felt Midton to be a solid home-base for future endeavours, with a It would not end quite that way for them at all.


Part 1 of like 3-4. We had a huge multi-day running session, so rather a lot to write up. The terrible, morally reprehensible antics continue it seems.

Saturday 9 August 2014

I played Capsule

Nothing to do with RPGs, skip if that's what you hanker for.

Capsule is a nice little slice of gloom. You're on a capsule. You don't remember anything. You have no view ports, only a lo-fi radar. It's great. I wrote a thing because I enjoyed this game.


You breathe, and you can taste it in the air. Or rather, you can taste the air. Stale. Recycled. A grim reminder of the ticking clock. The lights are red and dim, and you can feel the whirr of the generator throughout the hull. Straining. Cycling air. Running lights. Keeping the ugly, basic console before you alive. It's monochromatic light is harsh in the twilight of the emergency systems. Displayed on it are two basic symbols : a dot representing your tiny escape craft and the parent craft you are fleeing. A readout at the bottom left shows your distance. It increases rapidly, the initial thrust given by the escape system powering you on through the void.


Some time has passed. The air has become progressively staler. You have investigated the tiny, thin shelled pod you have chosen as your eventual tomb. You watched the generator for about - you don't remember how long you watched the generator for. You are looking at the console. It no longer shows the craft you are fleeing. You are a solitary dot on the screen. The distance readout has been replaced with two countdowns. You know the right-hand one is your oxygen. The count is 3 hours, roughly. The other counts down time until your next pulse. The next desperate cry for help in the deep black. The pulses are timed in such a way that the generator can power exactly enough pulses to last for the amount of oxygen given. How thoughtful. You sit. The tiny craft is hot, as the heat is difficult to disperse is space. The generous fins slowly radiate away the heat into pure vacuum. You are hurtling through space, yet you feel still. You wonder how many others found their way to escape pods.


More time has passed. You idly check the oxygen timer - you have about an hour and a half. You are imagining the battle your ship fell in. You decide battle doesn't really describe the reality of the fight itself. The ships stand out in the void, screaming emissions in every spectrum, as you are now. They launch drones at each other, which accelerate far faster than a manned ship could. They try and explode near each other. Your ship is lucky or dodges by moving erratically. Failing this, you could be damaged or destroyed utterly. As it was for your ship. Crippled, and being torn apart by the forces once keeping her flying, you fled to an escape vessel to die slowly. Of course, the other vessels in the fleet might be on their way to pick you up now. You lie down. The air tastes bad. The vibrations almost match your heart-beat. You wonder if this was on purpose. Clever engineers.


Later. Twenty seven minutes on the clock now. You tried thinking about religion, the afterlife, and what you've really believed all these years. You couldn't really focus, and instead thought about some of the cuter crew members. You consider that you probably should've said something to at least one of them before you found yourself in this situation. To be fair, you weren't to know. You spend some time imagining how that conversation would've went. When you check the time left, you see 10 minutes remaining. You realise your mouth is hanging open, and shut it. You don't feel yourself. The oxygen content is probably far lower than it should be. You giggle, and the sound echoes in your tiny egg. Egg is the wrong word, you feel. Egg implies life, a hatching. Tomb would just get you down, as would coffin. You decide on container. You come to realise that particular thought train took far longer than it should've done. Six minutes. You've given yourself a headache. Nothing to be done about that, really. You feel like you can hear the audible parts of your thought slowing, stretching, deepening. Strands like blu-tac. What? Two minutes. Shit. You're going to die and you're analysing yourself? Pretty lame way to go. You start choking on the not-really air. You'd have thought the clever engineers would've stopped you choking on your own CO2. Bastards. You die.

Friday 8 August 2014

(In)Effective Policing

The party roll into town. An important thing to know is the laws and customs of such a place, whether this be to help out or to start working around the system...

Determine the budget of the force by either having it appropriate for the settlement, or rolling below.

Destitute – Probably volunteer force or militia. Improvised weapons and no armour.
Poor – Few, poorly equipped watchmen. Leather amour, shields and spears.
Bearable – About what you’d expect for a settlement of this size, average equipment. Mostly leather, some chain. Shields, spears with the occasional side-arm.
Decent Funding – A decently sized, well equipped force. Chain shirts, pole arms and side-weapons. Slings, some bows. What you’d expect for a settlement of this size.
Great Funding – A notably large and well equipped force. Chain shirts, pole arms, shield and short sword. Crossbows for those guarding walls.
Incredible Funding – Full chain-mail for most, variety of pole arms, swords, maces with shields. Many crossbow-men on duty at any given time.

How corrupt is this force?

No corruption what-so-ever. This force is entirely given to upholding their laws and justice.
A tiny percentage of the force could be bribed for minor crimes. No large scale corruption.
Some minor, low-level corruption occurs. Locals could get away with middling crimes, outsides would have to pay quite the bribe to the right watchman.
Low-level corruption to the squad level. Sergeants could be convinced to look the other way for crimes which will not damage the populace. Most basic watchmen are open to bribes. Captains and the such believe firmly in the writ of the law.
Bribes are likely accepted for crimes less serious than murder, rape and arson. Whilst most of the captains are solid, a significant minority of the upper leadership is corrupt, and in the pocket of an interested party/parties.
Corruption is rampant. Honest watchmen are few and far between. The watch is effectively a joke, as is the law. Criminals are only brought in when they are incredibly obvious and/or dangerous – all other arrests are because one of the groups paying the watch want it to be so.

Who’s paying the watch off? Roll however many times seem appropriate.

A Thieves guild, criminal gang or similar group.
The local nobility.
The local craftsman guilds.
A single or collection of religious establishment(s).
A single individual/ group of individuals with incredible wealth but no hereditary power.
A foreign power.

Oddities, quirks and strangeness. Roll as many times as you like

A watchman will never permit skin-to-skin contact with the guilty.
The watch do not carry weapons – they only wrestle and fist-fight criminals. The money saved is spent training and armouring the watchmen.
The vast majority of the watch is made up of individuals too old to work. Young men are never of a rank above sergeant and invariably suffer discipline problems from the old folk.
The watch refuses to operate at night, pointing out the terrible beasts of the dark will deal with criminals for them. Crime rates at night are oddly low.
The watch only operates at night, saying a criminal in broad daylight will only get themselves caught. A skeleton crew runs the watch headquarters at day to accept criminals the populace in general catch.
Conviction of criminals require precisely 3 witnesses. Only women and children count. Far more women in the force than usual.
Watch is led by a team of settled-down adventurers, each establishing a branch of the guard – the Fighting-Men, a Spy network, the Holy Judges and a Magical Investigation wing.
Entire watch is made up of die-hard Justice-God worshippers. Very serious.
Every watchmen is required to carry a lit lantern, regardless of time or weather.
The entire watch uses only blunt weapons.
The entire watch uses the most thoroughly unpleasant weapons possible, whilst staying practical.
Watchmen are assigned 24 hour shifts with no sleep allowed.
Almost all of the watchmen are mercenaries who decided to settle down here.
No-one knows who is actually leading the watch, orders are simply pushed through the crack under the door.
Every watchman is accompanied by a dog, without fail.
The entire watch is made up of ex-criminals who have reneged their old ways.
The watch is composed of slaves which private owners must donate for a week at a time.
The watch avoid the trading and mercantile districts, citing that such businesses should pay for their own protection.
Every watch member has served previously as a watchmen in a different settlement.
Every watch member wears an identical full-face mask. All uniforms are identical.

A Conspiracy of Ravens

In every city and most towns, there is a tall wooden building. The walls are studded with holes, and offer little protection from the weather. Countless birds can be seen flying to and fro, day and night, navigating around each other with effortless ease. Regardless of the climate, the birds in questions are abnormally large ravens, without fail.

The wooden structures lack a door - in fact, the entire lower third is simple a solid support from the rest of the towering building. The function is to act as another stop in the Conspiracy - the finest and fastest messaging service in all the land - or so the rumour goes. There are no human handlers to these birds, for they are not any beast - some ancient happening gifted them twice over - both the ability to speak in the tongues of humanoids and the intelligence to use it. Combining this with their natural gift of flight, they established themselves as a de-facto postal service, either physically carrying the message or relaying it by word-of-beak. This service is offered at decent rates, affordable to those who would have need of such a service, as well as rumours of the truly destitute being given free service when it matters most. Governments and armies throughout the land use the Conspiracy, as the fees are substantially less than hiring magical help.

However, the service is not as benign as it seems. The ravens are privy to much knowledge best kept in secret, and are all too willing to sell the information on to parties they can trust. If one were to discover the truth and attempt to spread it, the Conspiracy would quickly utilize their considerable monetary wealth to hire a 'trouble-shooter' before the damage became too great.

The birds themselves are about as varied as any race in temperament, bar that they are all fiercely loyal. General trends include protecting their less-intelligent kin and looking down their beaks at the bird-familiars of magic users. Furthermore, they do not get along with druids, finding their naturalist outlook haughty, boring and backwards. They are far more in-tune with the industrious races and cultures.

Prices should be left to DM discretion, with costs increasing as distance increases. Physical mail should be roughly 1.5x more than word-of-beak services, with maximum weights being no more than could be carried by two ravens holding a piece of string attached to the object.

Monday 4 August 2014

Orphaned Characters

I was looking through my characters folder when I realised that few of them have games any more. I figured I'd post the character details here, and if people are interested I'll put the stats and the such up. If you use any of them as NPCs I'd love to hear about it.

Ancis Tane, Reluctant Skeleton

Ancis was born to a pair of retired adventurers, and was inspired by their tales to follow the family tradition. He trained relentlessly as a dungeoneering rogue, and finally set out on his 19th birthday to seek fame and fortune.

Sadly, this ended in disaster. The crew had been hired to take out a necromancer who had infested a local tomb. They had reached the villans lair, only to be absolutely slaughtered by the magical onslaught. And so it was the necromancer set about his rituals to raise them as fresh minions. As fate would have it, the groups Paladin had barely survived, and struck down the necromancer mid-incantation before expiring himself. The result of this was an incomplete raise dead spell - a skeleton with free will.

Ancis couldn't bear to go back home, having failed at the first hurdle. He knew his parents would be disappointed with his new found status, and so he resolved to fix the issue himself - get filthy rich to afford a resurrection spell that would still function on him.

He was forced to wear a metal mask, which went oddly unquestioned. He also had to find convenient excuses to avoid healing from the groups cleric, instead performing battle-field repairs with the bones of fallen enemies.

Balen Ralacio, Errant Bard

Balen was born to better things. The son of a knight of considerable standing, he was trained well in the arts of chivalry and war, or so his father thought. In actual fact, he was usually chasing the women around the castle grounds and sneaking into the attached town. His father increasingly despaired of him, until the final straw - Balen was discovered mid-coitus with a noblewoman from a rivalling family. He jumped before he was pushed, entering into self-exile and wandering the world, picking up useful skills as he went.

He thought of himself as hot shit, basically put. Rather than sing tales of other heroes to inspire his allies, he would sing about his own greatness and the shortcomings of the enemies. His main pursuit was carnal pleasure, especially when he could bed a noblewoman. He was a pig of a man, and pretty thoroughly horrific if jovial about it.

Biraeg the Scythian, Warlord in Waiting

A friend was planning a game set in the murky times of Greek myth. Rather than playing a civilized welp, I rolled up a bastard-hard horse archer nomad. Biraeg the Scythian was covered head-to-foot in tattoos, took the heads of his enemies as they fell before him and smoked copious amounts of marijuana. He had abysmal people skills owing to his complete disregard of Greek culture and customs, but could not be matched in speed or archery prowess.

Something we were looking forwards to was his mirth at the Greek pantheon interfering with his destiny - to lead his people in a glorious war/migration, which would have ran parallel to the actual migration of the Scythian peoples.

Abdullah, Desert-Dwelling-Dwarf

Rather than playing a straight dwarf from the mountains, I decided to try something a bit more left-of-field, hence Abdullah the Arabic-influenced Dwarf Wizard, who made his money as a merchant. He was a complete bastard, playing LE to the letter and somehow steering the party towards his chosen goals.

Notable achievements include using the groups rogue to test a trap, (leading to his death) as well as murdering the party's paladin later on - though arguably this was in self defence. Despite his horrific inclinations, he ended up being the party negotiator due to his mercantile inclinations.

This campaign was notable for pocket-sand being thrown at every god-damn opportunity, leaving many enemies unable to fight back as our rag-tag band of escaped prisoners beat them down.

Saturday 2 August 2014

LotFP Session 3 Writeup

After an extended break, our 'heroes' are back. Props to the commenter who described them as 'The Master Bastards', the group loved it. I'll have to link the dungeon used once the group has run entirely through it. With no further introduction, we continue our adventure.


Having rested after the previous night's revelries (theft, fighting, hanky-panky and some more theft) the group discussed plans for the near future. Having been hired to raid a tomb about two days out, they decided to give Tesco ample time to copy across some spells as well as ensuring that Pepper's plate would be completed. Despite the generous time given (10 days), Tesco only managed to copy a single spell across - Sleep. During this time, Abraham Von Gutchensmark refused to eat the standard pub fare, dining only at the most expensive eateries about town. Meanwhile, the rest of our group got friendly with a fellow group of adventurers heading in the same direction. They decided to journey together, seeking safety in numbers - or so they claimed. Other notable events include Milk paying a bitter old lady a significant sum for tuition in the art of poison making whilst Gutch acquired his first retainer - an apprentice tailor (A Von Gutchensmark must always look his best!) With this done, our group set out.

The other group of adventurers had sent an advance party ahead of the group, claiming they would 'prepare the ground' for their next job. However, the group refused to share any details regarding this job, saying that the nature of the 'snatch job' made it impossible. Oddly, our group decided to respect this professionalism. The first day of travel passed without incident, the area around the town being relatively civilized and hospitable. Our group set up in a small clearing, obviously intended for travellers in the woodland of this country. In order to ease any possible hostility, both groups agreed to post a guard, reducing the chances of treachery.

The first watch was taken by Pepper and Doug, one of the other group. Doug attempted to have a friendly conversation with Pepper, which went something like this -

"So, you be the fightin' man of yer outfit?"

*Pepper nods completely silently*

"Well...okay then."

At which point he moved to the other side of the clearing. At this point, Tesco arose, speaking his words of power, ensnaring the other group in a enchanted sleep. Following this, Pepper charged and slew the posted guard whilst the rest of the group set about murdering the sleeping adventurers. James (the apprentice tailor) watched on in horror as this happened, and continued to stare on aghast as our brave champions searched through their pockets. They gathered up the signature heavy crossbows of the group, and positioned the bodies to appear as though they had been ambushed, shooting one of the bodies multiple times. They performed a similar procedure on one of their horses before saddling up the rest and riding away.

They travelled through the dark for a couple of hours before coming across the next clearing, electing to make camp there. This time, they decided to post Milk and Gutch as guards. During Milk's watch, he spotted something most unusual - a pair of thin, branch-like protrusions in the road. They twitched at him when he moved. Taking this as a sign of friendliness, he waved his fingers back. Eventually, the protrusions retracted and there was a low bass rumble from the ground. When the watch switched over, Milk informed Gutch of this oddity. Gutch resolved to watch the road for the most part, only occasionally checking elsewhere.

So it was for several hours, until he performed his routine perimeter check - they were back, but this time on the forested side. Gutch quickly lost patience with the game that had so amused Milk, and matched to his tent to kick him awake. Upon this rapid movement, a terrible and great insect tore out of the ground where the antenna were, a clicking of it's mandibles filling the air and it's strange stink infected the air. The rest of the party were shocked awake by this, but not Gutch. Channelling the true spirit of a Von Gutchensmark, he bravely threw his sword at the beast. Though this attempt missed horribly, he did give a tree a solid lesson in swordsmanship.

Ignoring this, the insectile aberration snatched up one of their freshly stolen horses in its jaws, before dragging the unfortunate equine back into it's subterranean lair. The sound of terrible crunching and the screaming of the horse echoed forth, finally cut off by the collapsing of the temporary tunnel. At this point, the group agreed 'getting the fuck out of there' was the best bet.

Dawn found the party somewhat more rested, although on the move - they had slept in the cart whilst riding through the night, giving the casters plenty of time to prepare spells. The plan for the day was to search out the burial mound the tomb was located under, which should be located in a clearing somewhere in the forest. Thankfully, it was not long before they managed this. Hiding in the tree line, they saw a long approach to the large, narrow earth-work. Stone slabs made up the entrance at the front, leading into the interior of the tomb. They also noticed a cluster a trees crowning the mound, with what appeared to be a large sheet stretched between them, forming a crude roof.

Gutch decided to flank the mound, using the tree line as cover whilst the main group would march forwards towards the mound. The plan was to give Gutch a head-start, allowing him time to scout out the top of the mound from cover. Upon reaching his vantage point, he could make out three large humanoid figures atop the hill. At this point, Milk and Pepper set out, shields raised whilst Tesco flitted about behind them, clutching a heavy crossbow. The figures atop the hill spotted our adventurers, and a hunting horn rang out. In response, Gutch fired off his crossbow, scoring an early kill on one of the creatures, which were now charging down-hill towards our group.

They were 9 foot furred humanoids, with features somewhere between dog and hyena. The remaining two clutched two-handed weapons and were clad in rough leather armour. As they closed on our party, they were subject to two missile attacks - Tesco let fly a crossbow bolt, severely weakening one. Milk followed this up with a tossed spear at the last possible second, which lodged in the throat of the injured beast, finishing it off. The halberd-wielding Gnoll swung hard at Pepper, who none-the-less fought off the blows. However, our merry band had not noticed a flanking group of two, who slammed straight into the group, swinging their weapons - whilst Tesco avoided harm, Milk was struck down. Only unconscious, but out of the fight. To worsen the situation, another two of the creatures crested the mound.

The situation looked dire, and Tesco knew what he had to do. He spoke the words that tore asunder reality, allowing the denizens of Chaos itself to slip through and make merry hell upon our world. A terrible Demon-Snake poured forth, a stinking smoke rising from it's body. It leapt upon one of the beasts atop the mound, coiling him over and over in it's terrible folds. Luckily, the stinking fumes were enough to leave the victim and it's companion retching, unable to fight back. The Gnolls doom was sealed.

Seeing Milk go down, Gutch realised that the time for derring-do and brave deeds was upon him. He charged the creature responsible, stabbing his foe in the back with his short sword, dealing a terrible injury upon it. Despite this, the foe stood yet, malice clear in its eyes. Pepper dispatched the creature attacking Tesco, but remained mindful of the original halberd armed foe, who took the chance to swing for him - yet still he failed to get to grips with Peppers new plate. Unluckily, the grievously injured Gnoll repaid Gutch in kind, spinning on the spot and downing him in a single blow. The Snake-Demon's chosen victim was helpless, the life being crushed out of him every moment. His companion stumbled out of the smoke, and tried to engage the snake at range with his spear, but failed to loosen it's grip.

Tesco downed the grievously injured foe responsible for dropping Gutch and Milk, whilst Pepper began laying about the foe who had troubled him since the beginning. The snake finished it's first victim and sprung after the second, successfully constricting him. The terrible squeezing began. The remaining Gnoll made a hail-mary attempt on Pepper to no avail. The remaining party members made quick work of the unfortunate individual, and Tesco released the Snake of it's binding, allowing it to return from whence it came.

At this point our group set about looking after their injured companions. Most self-sacrificingly, Milk used his healing spell on Gutch, bringing him back up to full health, at which point he finished the previous sentence "A Von Gutchensmark never goes ... DOWN!" The party, at this point, decided to rest the day, allowing Milk to heal up before they headed into the barrows below. Pepper agreed to guard the slumbering Milk and the cart whilst Gutch and Tesco did some investigating. They first looted the bodies, grabbing a pair of keys and some pocket change. They then checked out a strange depression in the side of the hill Gutch had spotted earlier. It appeared there was a solid structure under the earth and grass, but they decided to leave it for now. Their final destination was the top of the mound, what they correctly assumed to be the Gnoll camp.

Once there, they discovered a locked chest amongst the filthy furs and scraps of material which seemed for form bedding. Tesco attempted to open the chest with his looted key, and was rewarded with the satisfying thunk of a lock opening. Inside the chest was a great deal of mixed coinage, which they approximated at 2000 silver. They shared a look. That look said 'We earned this.' They quickly distributed the coins into four pouches 'evenly', with Milk and Pepper receiving 400 silver whilst the other two walked away with 600 each. That is, if Gutch hadn't scooped 10 silver from each pot without Tesco noticing. With their trustworthy distribution of wealth completed, they dragged the loot downhill to share their find with the group.

Besides this, nothing of note happened on their 'off-day' besides Tesco attempting to copy down another spell. Surprisingly, he managed this in only two days, giving the party time to recuperate and have a full spell selection for the crawl ahead. To add to this, Milk felt his connection to his deity grow stronger, infusing him with an extra spell a day. They sought out a sturdy branch to serve as a torch, and began their delve through the front entrance. Milk brought up the front, wielding torch and spear, followed closely by the inimitable Abraham Von Gutchensmark. Third was Tesco, carrying a mace looted from their erstwhile companions whilst Pepper defended the rear with shield and a similarly looted mace.

They came to the first T junction, surrounded by the old old stonework of the place. Milk stuck his head around to corner, fortuitously looking left first - this gave him enough time to move his head away from the swung blade! An ancient reinforced skeleton rattled to life, obviously prepared in a combat stance. Milk failed to strike back, and shuffled back into the opposite turning on the T junction. This freed up room for Gutch to take a swing with his 10 foot pole, attempting to smash the undead foe into the wall. Sadly, his clumsy improvised weapon was blocked by the iron-bound dead. Tesco rolled into position under the swung pole, swinging for the legs with his mace. This both damaged and tripped the skeleton, leading directly to Pepper finishing the beast with a full-plate axe-kick.

Certain that they would face traps and enemies at this point, our party began the tried and tested method of tapping EVERYTHING with a long implement. The right hand turn led to another turn to their left, which featured a small set of stairs leading to a longer passage, broken by a doorway or turn about half-way down. Moving slowly down the stairs, Milk activated a pressure-plate with his spear. The tell-tale click of a mechanism was all the group needed- the front two members leapt back, crushing Tesco between their combined weight and the full-plated figure of Pepper. A ludicrous saw blade flashed before them, perfectly positioned to eviscerate a less-wise adventurer. Milk laid out a scrap of fabric to mark the trapped plate, and the party cautiously advanced into the passage.

The depression on the left side revealed itself to indeed be a doorway. The stone door was left slightly open - just enough to reveal a tiny slit of the room inside. Our brave adventurers argued over what to do at this before a plan was reached - Pepper pushed the door open. A blinding flash filled the underground space, blinding Milk for a good 20 seconds whilst the rest simply lost their limited night adaptation. Sight slowly restored, they found an empty room. Tesco told you so.

This distraction complete, they made the decision to move on, advancing as before. They met yet another T junction, although this one was lacking in skeletal foes. Instead, they saw a small font atop a dais to their right, and a passage to their left. Tesco set about inspecting this font, noting several things about it - there was no drainage, and a small metal tube set into the wall. Milk resolved to test the steps of the dais. The first step - nothing. The second step - a spray of black liquid spewed forth from the font, which ignited on the torch, the resulting detonation causing damage group-wide, knocking them all flat and extinguishing their source of light. Milk yelled about being struck blind whilst Tesco fumbled for his hooded lantern. The self-lighting mechanism saved them from a grisly, oily but mostly scorchingly hot death. Using this light source, they carefully picked their way out of the mound, resolving to give it another day perhaps.

James had several oily sets of clothes thrown at him as Gutch changed into a fresh set. Once again, another day and night passed without event. Whilst the morning was fresh, the group set once more into the unchanged-tomb, quickly reaching the point they had achieved before. They now investigated the newly found passage, which ended in a set of stair spiralling down and to the right. Moving down cautiously, they noted how the passage opened up, allowing for them to stand two-abreast, but also allowing for the use of larger weapons. At the foot of the stairs was an immediate doorway to the left, whilst the main passage continued forwards. Once again, Milk had a peek around the corner. He was met with the sight of no less than a dozen skeletons, clad in chain and armed with magnificent greatswords. As he ducked back round to inform his party, they audibly snapped for face him. Milk and Pepper formed a shield wall at the base of the stairs, allowing Gutch and Tesco to fight over the top of them. By the time this was set up, the terrible creatures were upon them. Wave after wave beat themselves against the defensive wall, until a single blow was landed on Pepper.

Once of the long-dead marched towards Pepper, as the previous three had. Rather than swing at him mindlessly, something possessed this one to strike over the top of the shield, punching straight through the plate armour. The blade was driven through his insides, unwinding his innards and punching out the other side. Pepper collapsed, seemingly mortally injured. Milk leapt over, and spoke his healing words quickly, snatching Pepper back from the brink of death. He stood back up, and fought with redoubled vigour. After this point, they were fighting a winning battle, and made work of the remaining foes without incident, though they were all thoroughly exhausted by the number of opponents.