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Reinforcements 3

Edo jumps towards one of the hounds bringing his staff down upon it with all of his strength. The hound takes some damage, it's ear hanging by a thread of skin, as it turns it's flame full upon Edo. Edo drops down, trying to avoid the flame but is unable and takes the burn on his left arm as he rolls to safety. His arm on fire, he continues to roll putting the fire out, but the burn still pains him deeply. Laban, hurries to his aid, and dispatches the hound with twirling scimitars leaving 2 hounds still circling, closing in. One towards Edo who rises from the gound with his injured arm, and one towards Alexander who is unconscious under the slab of rock.

Standing his ground, Edo menaces the flame breathing cur with his staff, smacking it aside the head.....

Laban backs towards the rock that pins Alexander down keeping his attention on the hounds he tries to get himself between them and the rock and Alexander.

Edo smacks towards another dog, but misses as the dog leaps with agility out of harms way and then advances again.

Edo continues his battle against the hellhounds, working his way towards Alexander and Laban...

Laban continues to press the hellhounds and tries to get between them and Alexander.

Continueing on, the 2 finally manage to subdue the hounds, as the last 2 standing flee the area.

"Laban, help me! Hurry, Alexander might still cling to life!" shouts Edo as he struggles to lift the stone slab from atop the druid.

Laban is at Edo's side as soon as he speaks and places his good shoulder against the rock, he heaves with all his might to lift the rock. "Come on you Pytack move!"

Laban looks down at Alexander and breathes a sigh of relief. "I think perhaps we should make camp here for the night." He looks around switching to infravision to see if there is any heat traces that may indicate any other beings. "Perhaps if you make a small fire and get him as comfortable as possible?! I will scout the area around here and see what I can find!"

"Aye, that I will do.. but first our captured "friend" over there." says Edo, pointing to the tied creature. "What should we do with it?"

Releasing Alexanders body from the boulder finally, and finding him breathing easily thanks to the quick thinking of Edo, sends the 2 men to contemplating their next act. At Laban's suggestion to begin a fire for warmth and to stave off the blackness of midnight, Edo agrees but comments thoughtfully, reminding them both of the bound, but yet alive bugbear not far away.

Laban looks at the creature and grins, "Well if I were normal amongst my people we would either enslave it or kill it!! However I am not normal so this I must leave up to you and will go with your decision!" He walks to where the bugbear lies tied up and glares at it.

"Do you understand me, beast? Can youy speak a civilized tongue?" asks Edo, looking at the trussed creature.

"We can leave it there for just now, whilst I see what I can find around here. If you make a camp fire I will scout and be back soon." He smiles and walks away.

Edo attempts to waken the creature, by various means. Slapping him lightly has no effect, a bit harder still nothing, water dumped on his face, his head just rolls back, and he coughs, but stays unconscious.

Making certain it is still very secure, Edo searches the sleeping creature.

Assuring yourselves that the beast is secure, you start to search the body. It's wearing ratty old breeches and equally smelly and torn tunic. You find no weapons or money, however it does have a small vial tucked into the recesses of it's right boot. The vial contains a black colored liquid.

Laban returns, informing you the area looks safe, and that he finds no signs of any other nasties in the area. Of course you both realize that after the day you've had anything is possible. But you buck up and hope the Gods will grant you a night of peace. After all, it's been a long day. You check on Alexander, and he is breathing fine now, his color completely returned to normal. He is still unconscious, but as comfortable as you can make him currently. You get the fire lit, and cook the rabbit Laban returned with, enjoying a tasty meal, and feeling full and satisfied, you discuss a night watch so you can get some real sleep. The night is warm, with a slight northerly breeze, the moon and stars fairly bright and the sky is clear. The time is around 1:00am or so.

"Perhaps you could take first watch? You have slept some tonight and I have not." asks Edo.

Laban agrees, and Begins his perimeter patrol, stepping out of the range of the fire to use his superior night vision. Edo, has no problem finding a comfortable spot to curl up and get some much needed sleep. Laban allows Edo to sleep the entire night, and upon Edo waking up in the morning, he finds the creature is awake, and Alexander seems to be awakening as well.

"Well, good morning. Can you speak a civilized tongue?" asks Edo of the trussed beast.

The beast either doesnt understand you, or just flat out refuses to answer your questions, as there is no response. Alexander awakes fully during your questioning, and smiling during his complaint of a headache he sits up and looks about. "I had the strangest dream my friends. Azimuth appeared to me and warned me of the magical ether being tampered with. I must go immediately to the temple, but I extend my thanks to you both and will forever call you friend should you ever need my aid, I will be available to you." Alexander stands, a bit wobbly, and prepares to head out.

"You are welcome and can call upon our aid as well should you need it." says Edo, bowing to the druid. "Perhaps you would have council on what to do with this beast?"

"Perhaps you can illicit it's promise to leave this area alone? I know no other alternative to it's death I'm afraid." Alexander replies. As he speaks, the air begins to shimmer around him slightly. "I really must go my friends. My God has need of my service" He begins to move away after a friendly wave, much quicker than you would of thought possible after his injuries. Edo feels a strong magical arua radiating from him, before he waves a hand in the air, vanishing from sight.

Turning to Laban, Edo asks the elf's advice as well.

Laban reiterates that in his world, they'd kill it outright. But he is torn because of the cold heartedness of the act.

Once again Edo addresses the beast. "I'll try once more. Do you understand what I say? Will you promise to leave this area in peace? If not, I will have no option but to slay you.... painlessly of course."

The beast grunts, and begins struggling against it's bonds.

"So you do understand. I figured so. Remember this mercy beast, for I will not be so merciful the next time we cross." Edo cuts the rope holding the bugbear.

It lunges towards Edo, with fangs and claws bared, rending his tunic sleeve...and his right forearm, open for 3 inches. Laban runs forward scimitars ready, waiting for a clear shot, hesitating for fear of stabbing Edo as well the creature.

"Ungrateful wretch!" says Edo as he leaps backwards a staggering 10 feet, allowing Laban a clear shot.

Edo leaps backward, and Laban reacts immediately as though the 2 of you have been fighting partners for years instead of days. With scimitars flashing, Laban takes off the head of the bugbear with the first strike, and it falls to the ground jerking and convulsing for a few moments before it succumbs to death.

"Almost like we rehearsed it, eh?" says Edo with gradification. "Thank you, once again I am in your debt."

It's late, Alexander has vanished, and all you have left to do is whatever you intend to do before bed. Laban offers to take first watch again.

Edo tends to his wound, before gratefully lying down for some much needed rest.

Edo cleans and binds the gash on his arm, noting it's pretty deep and binding it tightly because of it. Sleep comes quickly, and the night passes uneventfully. Morning arrives and finds Laban and Edo both well, alive, and hungry. Re-Stoking the fire, the men eat left overs, and pack up their makeshift camp before deciding their next move.

Looking around, you see dead hellhounds, a beheaded bug bear, and the original emcampment that drew your attention with the long dead dwarf in residence. Other than that, it's open ground with a few bushes and rocks and not much cover leading away from the mtn side.

Laban winces a little as the sun comes up and tries to pull his hood up over his face to shade his eyes from the wicked glare. "Perhaps we should move on!"

"Did you have a destination in mind?" edo asks.

"Let us stay away from the main cities just now my friend! I am unsure how I would be accepted just yet!" Laban replies to Edo's suggestion they head towards Dragonmeyr.

You travel southwest for a few days finding nothing of real interest but Edo feels the pull of his calling and Laban goes along for the ride. You crest a small hill as the sky begins to darken, and in the distance you note a small grove of trees. Thinking it would be an ideal spot to make camp you approach slowly, tired from your long day of travel. As you near the small copse of trees you can smell the clean running water and it sets your mouths to salivating. You get a bit closer, and you can see 4 riderless horses tied to the trees and you hear voices within.

Laban slows down "We should be cautious after all we know not who it is or what they are doing. They might not welcome company, especially from one of my kind!" He drops his hands to rest on the hilts of his scimitars.

Laban pulls the hood from his face and smiles at Edo "You continue in my friend as it is getting dark I will scout ahead and see what lies within the trees. I will never be far and you need only call my name if you are in trouble my hearing is quite good." With that he runs off and into the deepening gloom of nightfall.

You both approach, with Laban staying hidden in the shadows. You find 2 women and 2 men talking about finding 'the group' and 'the party'.

"Hail the camp!" shouts Edo from the darkness, keeping to the shadows for now as he judges their reaction.


The story continues...
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