Reclaiming Duskshire: Distracting the Gate
June 21, 2018, 9 p.m.
Outside Arx - Oathlands near Artshall - Duskshire Keep
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It's so subtle that most people fail to notice it. For just a moment, perhaps no more than a half a second, every single silver coin in the city of Arx glows faintly. A little glimmer, a trick of the light surely that the vast majority dismiss, or perhaps their eyes deceived them. But still, a few swore it happened. If only for a half second.
And so the party that has been tasked with distracting the front gate of Duskshire arrives. The field is empty and the grass is dry and brown. The walls of the keep loom overhead and far up on the wall, they can see a couple of archers patrolling. Those archers can see them coming from a distance and point, but that's about as far as their reaction goes so far. The gates are closed up and barred and they're /safe/ behind those walls.
"We could set all the grass on fire, but I expect that would be more to our detriment then theirs." Alis kicks at the dry, brown stuff would a bit of a frown. "We could lie like rugs, and pretend to be here to offer them a peerage. 'Why, you're just so good at holding a keep we've decided to grant you a title!'. And get the new 'Count' out here, or whoever, and then start a fight.." She might be feeling a little bloodthirsty of late, so there's a perhaps faintly sheepish look there as she glances at the others. "Perhaps another idea would be best."
Alexis is wearing her steel which is contrasted by the alaricite helm, the face-mask-visor drawn back, now. Sticking close to Gawain for now. "Could challenge them to single combats too. Lots of ways to do it." Alexis notes to Alis. Then pauses. Looking to the heir of Blanchard. "So, uh. I had a friend make you a gift. And I've been meaning to give it to you, but time ran away for me. And since we might die, I'd really rather you have it before that."
Snorting in some clean, fresh air, Genevieve nods decisively. "Let's tell them that the Sword of Artshall is here. And then let's insult their mothers. And their lineage." Perhaps she's being serious, perhaps not, but she shrugs her shoulders. "What's the sort of thing that would get any of you to run out of a keep. Or defend it to the exclusion of all other concerns.
Snorting in some clean, fresh air, Genevieve nods decisively. "Let's tell them that the Sword of Artshall is here. And then let's insult their mothers. And their lineage." Perhaps she's being serious, perhaps not, but she shrugs her shoulders, "What's the sort of thing that would get any of you to run out of a keep. Or defend it to the exclusion of all other concerns."
"Oh, I don't think we're gonna die. This is gonna be easy!" Gawain is, as usual, suuper confident, dressed in his fine (Alexis-Made) plate armor, his visor still up. And since it's up, one can see the curious expression on his face. "A gift? You didn't have to do that." As for the actual mission planning, the Chevalle Knight offers no suggestions.
"I know I didn't -have- to. I wanted to." Alexis notes. "Besides, Ida charges too little..." She grumps, slightly, and hands over the dagger, looking to Genevieve. "I'm bad at insults and such. I can challenge, though." She suggests. "Though like, it'd be for real. I'd actually fight them."
"I like your idea." Alis nods at Genevieve and then just steps up to cup her hands around her mouth and shout. "HEY, YOU MOTHERLESS SONS OF GOATS. THE SWORD OF ARTSHALL WOULD LIKE A WORD WITH YOU." She's not good at the insults either. "I CAN ALSO SMELL YOU FROM HERE. DON'T YOU KNOW THERE'S A RIVER RIGHT THAT WAY?" She points, while Alexis presents her gift to Gawain.
Nice and safe in the keep! The archers watch the small group approach and don't seem in the least bit concerned. One of them trots along the top of the wall and gestures (crudely) down at the banner of the Laurent honeybee with a giant X across it along with the drawing of a dragon with a twirling villain mustache. Then they give Alis the finger. "COMPACT SCUM! WHY DIDN'T YOU BRING ONE OF YOUR 'TREBUCHETS'?!" Then they all get out a good laugh. The thing about the trebuchets is apparently an inside joke. Then they start playing a little game of target practice. (dex + dodge at 30)
Alexis has rolled a critical success!
Alexis checked dexterity + dodge at difficulty 30, rolling 75 higher.
Genevieve checked dexterity + dodge at difficulty 30, rolling 13 lower.
Also: "WE DON'T SEE HIM! HE WEARS THOSE HIDEOUS HATS!"
Alis checked dexterity + dodge at difficulty 30, rolling 4 lower.
Gawain checked dexterity + dodge at difficulty 30, rolling 1 higher.
Ever had one of those moments where you think you shouldn't have made a suggestion? Because that's exactly what Genevieve is having right now as she stares at Alis with wide eyes and an open mouth. In fact, with an arrow already knocked on her bow, she is completely unaware of any danger that might be whizzing its way towards her...
As the arrows starts flying, Alexis stops her flirting, and quickly interposes herself between Genevieve and the flight of arrows. "I'LL FIGHT YOU! SEND ME DOWN SOMEONE WHO'S NOT AFRAID TO FIGHT A TINY GIRL!" A tiny girl in plate and chain. With a huge alaricite sword. "COME FIGHT SOMEONE HALF YOUR SIZE!"
Gawain has only a moment to look at the dagger Alexis gifted him.. before the arrows start flying. He's not one to dodge or duck normaly, it's why he's wearing the heavy plate, but he does step out of the way, narrowly missing an arrow as he slams his visor down and draws his sword.
"FOR THE RECORD I DO NOT HAVE A MUSTACHE, THANK YOU. YOUR DRAWINGS SUCK!" Alis counters, maturely. "I LEFT MY TREBUCHET IN MY OTHER PANTS, TOO. BUNCH OF SISSIES, STANDING UP THERE FIRING ARROWS. NOT VERY WELL, EITHER!" I mean sure, they hit. But they pling off her armor (a worried glance goes Gen's way, and the princess is obviously relieved Alexis prevented anything from hitting! "COME ON OUT AND FACE ME. I DARE YOU!" It's like she and Alexis are similar or something. A gesture of solidarity is made with her thumb towards the other warrior woman. It's at that moment that a second group begins to take shape further back. A bunch of knights in gleaming armor that are pushing a ... battering ram towards the Keep. "OR YOU CAN JUST WAIT TILL WE BASH YOUR DOOR IN AND FIND YOU TO BEAT YOUR FACES IN."
"HAHAHA! Look at the little one jumping!" That's for Alexis, the archers point and laugh at her from way up there. What a bunch of jerks... "AHAH THE OTHER LITTLE ONE IS ANGRY TOO! SHOOT MORE ARROWS, MAKE THEM DANCE!" They're shouting loud enough for the people on the ground to hear them. "OH! SET YOUR ARROWS ON FIRE!" Then a bunch of knights come out of the woods and there's a pause, silence as they squint off into the distance. Then there are murmured noises of alarm from the archers, several of them scurry off of the wall and down into the courtyard below. Three remain on the wall and apparently they're serious about that fire suggestion now. The grass is /very/ dry.
Genevieve wields a well-made recurve shortbow .
Genevieve checked dexterity + archery at difficulty 40, rolling 11 higher.
Genevieve checked dexterity + dodge at difficulty 30, rolling 9 higher.
Gawain checked dexterity + dodge at difficulty 30, rolling 15 lower.
Alis checked dexterity + dodge at difficulty 30, rolling 2 higher.
Alexis checked dexterity + dodge at difficulty 30, rolling 25 higher.
"Best we find other ways to distract," Alexis calls out to her fellow, unfortunately, seeing the flicker of torches and hearing the shouts. "Bring it to their gates, see how long it takes for them to bring out the boiling pitch?" She muses. She doesn't have a bow, but she -does- find a nice, fist-sized rock to throw at the leftmost of the archers remaining on the wall.
The arrows that comes down from the walls are indeed on fire and covered in pitch. The harm to Gawain isn't immediately evident and he might be uninjured under all of it, but... he's a bit on fire. Which is problematic for all sorts of reasons. It's also problematic that the groudn is now on fire around them, as the arrows that miss the others hit the grass. Meanwhile, two of the three archers on the wall are howling. There are noises behind the gate.
And Genevieve is totally not aware of the arrow coming whizzing towards her, because when Alexis dashes in front of her like the Knight in Shining Armor that she is, Genevieve whips her head around in confusion. Then it's mouth clamped shut, eyes narrowed dangerously, and the overall expression of a very, very grumpy cat. Stepping to the side of Alexis with a quiet but heartfelt 'thank you', the archer pulls back her knocked arrow against the string of her bow, then looses it a mere second later. Raising her voice in a roar, she shouts, "EAT THIS, YOU WANKERS!" Then, just as quick, a whip fast movement that pulls an arrow from her quiver, against the bowstring and then into the sky towards those nasty bastards being all shooty from the safty of the keep. The fire, though? Damn.
"For the record, we deserve many many thank you's from the other team. I'm just saying." Alis offers, raising her hand to... flip them off? No, she's signaling the Knights to keep moving for now as she begins stomping a path; kicking dirt over patches of flaming grass and stomping on the rest to try and put it out once it's been covered. "On it." To Alexis. "Roll it right up to the gates, Knights." Just as the Dame requested. "YOU MIGHT WANT TO PAY ATTENTION TO THE BATTERING RAM INSTEAD." As she ducks an arrow. "Wanker. Excellent insult."
Alexis tries to stomp out fires, a bit more important than the lone archer. "Gawain! Use your new dagger to scrape the pitch off before the metal heats to the point where you boil!" She suggests. "or... Roll on it and choke it out."
Gawain is not a dodger. This has been established- he's not really bothering to dodge the fire arrows, trusting his armor to protect him- and protect him it does. Of course, now he's on fire. Its hard to tell if he's panicing about that or not- once his visor is down, the Chevalle Knight doesn't emote or speak much- and he does seem calm enough as he uses one gauntleted hand to beat the the little spark of flame out- before giving Alexis a thumbs up. So he's still human.
Alis checked command + war at difficulty 40, rolling 15 higher.
Alis checked command + war at difficulty 40, rolling 17 higher.
Alis checked command + war at difficulty 40, rolling 15 higher.
"OH THAT HURT! OH!" More curses from the men on top. Now, down below? The group inside the keep are attempting to fortify that gate. But to be fair to the gate, it's decades upon decades old and it hasn't been taken care of. The battering ram hits it once. BANG. The battering ram hits a second time. SMASH. The battering ram hits it a third time. CRASH. And a whole host of other noises that aren't really a lot of fun. Like splintering wood and buckling metal and a whole bunch of screaming. "OH MY EYES, I HAVE SPLINTERS IN MY EYES!" The gate begins to collapse inward. There's a lot of scurrying back there, but some of the enemy is brave (and angry enough) to try spilling out of the ruins of the gate and attack the knights and our four heroes.
Alexis raises her voice into a high-pitched cry as she charges forward with her sword raised and thrust out before her. It is time for the Oathlands tradition of a tiny knight yelling adorably as she rushes into battle. Can't let Alis have all the fun on that one.
Genevieve checked dexterity + archery at difficulty 40, rolling 10 higher.
Alexis checked dexterity + huge wpn at difficulty 40, rolling 29 higher.
"Show them what we're made of! For the Oathlands!" Alis rallies the battering-ram knights, sprinting towards them to join them and fight off those that start spilling out to fight them. She is /not/ going to leave the men there to fend for themselves and just twiddle her thumbs. "Dame Alexiiiiis! Yas!" She's already in battle, but surely that counts for the second adorable yell from tiny knight. Right? "STATUS!" She wants to know how Gawain and Genevieve are doing too, obviously. It's a habit. Sorry >.>
Alis checked dexterity + medium wpn at difficulty 40, rolling 8 higher.
Gawain checked dexterity + medium wpn at difficulty 40, rolling 45 higher.
In between stamping out any fires that might be spreading towards her, Genevieve pulls another arrow out of her quiver. Nocks it, aims it, fires it! Right into that last archer. Whizzz-whizzz-doof! Screaming, oh so much screaming from him, then a faintly bemused look from the sellsword to Alexis and Alis, both of them yelling adorably as the two wee meatshields go charging towards the gates. To Alis, she yells backs, "STILL SHOOTING THESE KNOB-ENDS, YOUR HIGHNESS!"
Oh, what you want.. now this is what Gawain likes. He might not be sallin' in on a stallion (#myshot) but melee combat is close enough. When their enemy comes out to meet them, the knight runs foreward. He doesn't shout a warcry or even answer Alis' call for his status- he lets his blade do the talking.
And boy does that blade talk! Gawain cuts deep into his foe, seriously injuring her.
Alis checked dexterity + dodge at difficulty 25, rolling 40 higher.
Small Knight, Big Fight - that's the name of the painting by Princess Denica that hangs in Alexis' shop, as the oathlander with the big sword presses her foe against the battered gate, knocking them about if not out. Still making loud angry noises as she uses her sword to attempt to clear a path before her.
Genevieve checked dexterity + dodge at difficulty 25, rolling 4 lower.
Alexis checked dexterity + dodge at difficulty 25, rolling 24 higher.
Alis is going to check on everyone's well being whether they answer or not; the butt of her flail stunning one of the attackers as she's spinning around to see Gawain and his blade. And, so she can salute Genevieve with her free hand, a satisfied nod at Alexis. Whoever comes at her next she blocks from scoring a hit by using her gauntleted forearm against the hilt of their weapon. And, the spiked weapon swings out again. Tiny tyrant tactics.
Cristoph GM Roll checked dexterity(4) + medium wpn(4) at difficulty 25, rolling 22 higher.
30 inflicted and Gawain is unharmed.
Amid the charge of the the attackers coming from the gates, one of them slips through and thens run towards Genevieve, making a beeline for her as he dashes past his fellow aggressors. Able to drop her bow, but not fast enough to pull her rubicund axe from her belt, the archer can only make a hasty dodge backwards as a blade comes swinging wildly at her, accompanied by a furious roar from its wielder. The twist of her body is fast, but not quite fast enough to avoid the slash that grazes her arm. Thank the gods, however, because it only rips through the hard leather of the red tunic she wears layered beneath her breastplate. Nonetheless, the sellsword grits her teeth in rage, managing to finally swing her axe in a furious arc.
Alis checked dexterity + medium wpn at difficulty 40, rolling 12 higher.
Gawain has rolled a critical success!
Gawain checked dexterity + medium wpn at difficulty 40, rolling 52 higher.
Genevieve checked dexterity + medium wpn at difficulty 40, rolling 3 higher.
Alexis checked dexterity + huge wpn at difficulty 40, rolling 3 lower.
Alis checked dexterity + dodge at difficulty 20, rolling 18 higher.
Alexis checked dexterity + dodge at difficulty 20, rolling 24 higher.
Gawain doesn't bother trying to avoid he's foe's blade- he takes it as he always does- across the chest and trusts his armor to keep him standing. He gives better then he gets though, running his blade through his foe and dropping her- just in time to see the new, bigger soldier enter. Grunting beneath his helmet, the horselord moves to engage the new threat, his sword held in a high guard.
And it's a hit! Blood goes spraying as the glittering red blade of her axe slices into the arm of her attacker in a deliciously tit-for-tat way that Genevieve will probably have a good old grin about later on. And there's such a lot of blood, too -- blood that sparkles like the garnets of that line the haft of her axe as it glistens through the air. It's very beautiful, really, although perhaps the fellow who just got slice doesn't think so. He's had to drop his sword, and is now trying to stagger away holding one hand to the envelope-like gash that's soaking through his tunic. Ouch!
"Now that's more like it!" Alis somehow sees the bigger guy coming out to brawl. But as she is currently engaged with one of the bad guys in a circling dance of dodge and weapon-whirl, she can't fling herself that way. "Was that arterial spray?" There might have been a little awe in her voice there; obviously nice job Genevieve.
"I think so, your highness!" Genevieve shouts back. "Thanks!" And then more swinging at anyone who gets up in his face.
Gawain checked dexterity + medium wpn at difficulty 35, rolling 15 higher.
Alis checked dexterity + medium wpn at difficulty 35, rolling 9 higher.
Genevieve checked dexterity + medium wpn at difficulty 35, rolling 20 higher.
Alexis is busy pushing her foe around, making more of those angry noises and using her giant two-handed sword almost as a spear, spotting the bigger person and pointing to them. "You! Fight me!" She cries out.
Alexis checked dexterity + huge wpn at difficulty 35, rolling 30 higher.
Cristoph GM Roll checked dexterity(4) + medium wpn(4) at difficulty 35, rolling 38 higher.
76 inflicted and Gawain is harmed for moderate damage.
The Big Guy (tm) may or may not hear Alexis' taunt- Gawain's already engaged him, the pair trading blows- the Big Guys's weapon actually managing to brust through Gawain's armor, even as the knight returns (almost) as good as he gets. He's still silent- focued on the battle.
Bleeding Guy isn't in much of a state to fight back, that much is clear. Apparently Genevieve is being nice today, because she doesn't just cut his head off like she wants to. Instead, she swings her rubicund axe in a slamming blow, intent of knocking the poor lad out rather than half-decapitating him. With a twist of her body to administer the hit, she kicks her leg out into hard kick afterwards to send him flying backwards onto the burned-up grassy earth.
Seeing arterial spray from an enemy can be a thing of beauty; see that arc? Alis watches it land against the battering ram. "It almost makes me want to switch back to sword. It's so hard to get a clean cut with a flail." Really? In the middle of battle? Through the chatter, she keeps attacking and dodging though; with an added grunt now as she tries to be more aggressive and finish this one off.
Her foe is more a distraction than anything else, now. Still pushing them around, blade poking minor holes in their armour that come with blood and pain, but still not enough to bring them down. Alaricite sworn hewn high, Alexis makes the executive decision to try to rush the big guy, announcing her intentions with another angry and high-pitched scream.
Gawain checked dexterity + medium wpn at difficulty 35, rolling 39 higher.
Genevieve checked dexterity + medium wpn at difficulty 35, rolling 6 lower.
Alis checked dexterity + medium wpn at difficulty 35, rolling 3 higher.
Genevieve has rolled a critical success!
Genevieve checked dexterity + dodge at difficulty 20, rolling 37 higher.
Alis checked dexterity + dodge at difficulty 20, rolling 18 higher.
Gawain checked dexterity + dodge at difficulty 20, rolling 2 lower.
Alis is just not finding that right place to find purchase with her feet and latch that flail through armor and into flesh. It's a little infuriating if the sudden scowl is any indication. Though she has, for now, been able to avoid any injury at all while fighting. The scowl turns to a grimace. The longer they can keep them engaged, the better it will be for the other group of fighters. Maybe pansy swipes aren't so bad afterall.
Alexis checked dexterity + huge wpn at difficulty 45, rolling 14 higher.
Alexis checked dexterity + dodge at difficulty 20, rolling 33 higher.
So being merciful is a bad, bad idea in this case, because instead of connecting, Genevieve's axe somehow go whipping past her attacker, missing the side of his face by just a whisker. Her kick, as a result, completely misses him too, leaving her unbalanced when her foot slams back down into the smouldering dirt. With a malignant glint in his gaze, he somehow kicks his legs out, hitting the archer hard in the back of the knees and sending her staggering forwards. falling to the ground with only her free hand to brace her. It's then that he charges at her again, knife in hand, but Genevieve rolls to the side and scuffles to her feet as her assailant stumbles past her. Taking quick advantage of his vulnerable state, she darts forward and aims another kick in his side. This one hits, knocking him over in the dirt.
Her charge interrupted by the desperate shriek of the man she was fighting, Alexis turns and assumes a set stance, as though facing down a charging boar. Her opponnet impales himself, spitting blood, and she wrenches him to the side, sliding him off the razor-sharp alaricite in one smooth motion, turning back and once more raising her voice in anger, as her blade is drawn above her head and she hurries towards the big guy once more.
Alis checked dexterity + medium wpn at difficulty 30, rolling 1 higher.
Genevieve checked dexterity + medium wpn at difficulty 20, rolling 11 higher.
Alis checked dexterity + medium wpn at difficulty 30, rolling 17 higher.
Gawain checked dexterity + medium wpn at difficulty 35, rolling 25 higher.
Genevieve wields Blood Moon, an ironwood-hafted rubicund handaxe.
Alexis checked dexterity + huge wpn at difficulty 50, rolling 18 higher.
Alexis crashes into her foe from the side, sweeping her sword low, because if you're a damn anklebiter, you're a damn anklebiter and though she doesn't -quite- manage to sever a leg or two, she does manage to cut away cloth and clesh and leave the big man unbalanced. Glancing to Gawain, giving him an encouraging nod from behind her Niamh-like mask.
Alis has a snarl of triumph ready when she finally lands enough of a blow to her opponents thick skull that his eyes roll back and he slumps to the ground. Apparently he is muttering something on his way to collapse on the ground though, and she looms over him with narrows eyes. "That's right, buddy. None of us have mustaches." Then she frowns. Which Valardin /have/ they been drawing, anyway?
Gawain draws his sword back- but rather then cut or stab at his opponent, he brings the pommel down- slamming the big man in the chest.. knocking him down into Alexis' waiting blade- SKEWERED.
With her attacker wheezing on the floor and vulnerable, Genevieve pants as she stalks forward. Lifting her boot, she slams it down on the side of his head in an attempt to knock him out. Night night! Then she's turning around, surveying the battle with her dark gray gaze.
And in all of this, the knights at the gate have been doing an ace job of stopping anyone else from overflowing out into the fields. There's the matter of a couple of minor brush fires from before, which has everything looking smoky and dramatic. Past them, there's quite the chaos in the courtyard. People running back and forth shouting: "THE VALARDINS ARE HERE!" or "NO IT'S THE LAURENTS!" or "THE SWORD OF ARTSHALL IS HERE TO MURDER US" or "NO IT'S JUST SHORT WOMEN!" or "IT DOESN'T MATTER AHHH, I SAW A BIG GUY, IT'S SIR CLEMENT!" Chaos. It's a big giant ball of chaos in there, which means that well... most eyes are probably at the gate. And /not/ whatever is going on inside. What could possibly happen in there?
"Shall we try to meet up with the others or just hold the gate for the exit?" Alexis inquires, panting. Drawing her sword back and cleaning it on her fallen foe.
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