War Games: Northern Style
OOC: Another training session for the Academy of War, this time set in the Northlands. Unlike previous scenes there IS a possibility of being injured in this scene. Anyone in the Redrain fealty chain is welcome, as well as any Academy of War members. I am hoping to not have more than seven, so please let me know if you are interested.
Sept. 2, 2019, 2 p.m.
Outside Arx - Northlands near Stormwall - Eyre Fells
Comments and Log
It's a BEAUTIFUL day up in the Redrain Mountains. This is an off-shoot of The Great Road, leading to a small outpost that doesn't have a name. It's from that outpost that patrols are scheduled up here in the mountains. Like this small group of ten armed soldiers that are heading back home. They're walking and totally unaware that something might happen to them.
Above them is where the Academy of War troops are stationed. Their objective is simple. Follow Marian's directions, attack, and get out without anyone getting caught by the reinforcements that are sure to poor from the outpost.
Marian looks at the soliders under her command, and gives them some tips before they get started, "Remember, shav strike forces try to blend into the land and ambush rather than do a frontal assault. They will observe, follow and then strike when the land is to their advantage. What you need to pay attention to is unnatural formations in the land, unusual bird calls or stop point where they can bring down rocks on your head." She gives a grim smile to the group, "The force today that's working against us are filled with prodigals that have experience like I do fighting in the mountains. They will not go easy so don't take things for granted."
Leaned back as Artur listens to the instructions from Marian, the Redrain Prince looks around the area, and shakes his head. "I really should see about learning some archery to rain arrows down." he comments with a frown, and then glances aside to Marian. "On your lead." he offers to her as he works on shifting his spear to get it ready in an attack position.
Artur wields Beastbane, a diamondplate short spear.
Marian looks at the soldiers under her command that are on the attacking side, "Shav strike forces try to blend into the land and ambush rather than do a frontal assault. They will observe, follow and then strike when the land is to their advantage." She gives a smile and tells the group working under her command directly, "Stealth will be your greatest asset as well as your head..." She motions to the weapons, "Don't give away your position when we're moving about. And try to keep low to the ground."
Marian checked dexterity + survival at difficulty 15, rolling 33 higher.
Artur checked dexterity + survival at difficulty 15, rolling 31 higher.
Ian checked dexterity + survival at difficulty 15, rolling 37 higher.
Kaldur checked dexterity + survival at difficulty 15, rolling 7 higher.
It's a questionable decision on Kennex's part, sending, of all people, Ian to Redrain's ambush exercise, but here he is. Maybe all Kennex's other fighters were busy. Even he looks like he's not sure sending him was the best way for Kennex to promote its desire and willingness to help Redrain, but he's nevertheless game for anything. While his passage through the overgrowth could not be called graceful, he's got an instinctive understanding of his surroundings, and a honed skill of moving with them in a way that makes him blend in fairly well.
Icelyn checked dexterity + survival at difficulty 15, rolling 10 higher.
Norwood GM Roll checked perception(3) + survival(2) at difficulty 15, rolling 11 higher.
Kaldur is known for many things, being discreet is not one of them, though he makes a game effort to follow Marian's directives. Keeping low he manages. Not giving away their position... maybe he shouldn't have polished his armor before coming on this particular maneuver.
Icelyn, on the other hand, was made for these mountains. Clad in leathers and a bow on her back, she moves with calm grace in this terrain. When she moves, it's quick and silent, and when she stops she stops so completely she might as well not be there at all.
She peers down at the soldiers on the road. "From this vantage, we might be able to take most of them out with arrows," she murmurs to Marian.
It's the end of a long patrol for the soldiers, and they're not quite as alert as they might have been at the start. The groups above are successful, but one man at the back keeps glancing up to a ridge like he's got a twitch. He looks, but nothing //quite// catches his eye. They continue their ride along, ignorant of the danger above them for now.
Artur is a tree. He has branches and leaves. Pay him no mind. He points at Icelyn. See! She has the right idea! However, he continues to defer to the war chieftian. This is her party. He's just here to assist where he can.
Kaldur startles, he lost track of Icelyn and didn't expect her to be RIGHT THERE when she spoke. He closes his eyes and puffs out a breath, glancing to Marian, awaiting command.
Artur adds, "If we do fire arrows, we should aim for the rear, and drive them to us." he points out.
Marian has stripped down to the bare minimum on this exercise, actually wearing a normal tunic so she's not so obvious in her steel. She gives a silent nod to Icelyn, handing her over some tips that will blunt the arrows and not injure the men below. She nods at Artur's suggestion, touching her nose to let the folks know that she agrees with him. She points to her own bow and looks to the others to see who wants to receive the guards with their swords versus stay behind with Icelyn and help her herd folks.
Ian isn't actually wearing a sword at his hip, but the cane he carries is probably a better weapon for something like this, anyway, since it'll hurt but is unlikely to kill anyone. "Drive them to me," he says to Marian in a low, even tone. "I'll do what I can. Is our objective to grab their supplies, or just take them out?"
Icelyn /almost/ catchesKaldur's eye. But her gaze slips away at the last moment. Instead she raises a brow and a hand, offering him a warrior's 'okay?' gesture without speaking more words than necessary. With her other hand, she deftly fits Marian's arrow-tips to the arrows in her quiver, then slings her bow off her back. A quick nod to Marian to signal her readiness to become a very pointy sheepdog.
Kaldur murmurs something to the warchief.
Icelyn wields serene wintertide oathlands steel bow with polished nickle grip.
Marian murmurs softly to the group so they know their instructions, "Capture the guards first and then we can grab what we need from them. Try to avoid injury but a few bruises won't hurt if they're lax on the job."
"I'll go with Lord Kennex." Artur offers in agreement with Ian, and twists the spear he carries in his hand. "We'll work take them down quickly enough."
It's edging on towards noon-time and the soldiers down below feel pretty safe. The one who was looking up as decided he was crazy and is now laughing with another man as they slide off of their horses. Soldiers absolutely don't have picnic baskets, but they absolutely have picnic satchels which are opened and food doled out. From the sound of talking that is reaching it sounds like one very put-upon guys is getting made fun of for not managing to ask his crush for a dance at the last party.
Artur checked dexterity + medium wpn at difficulty 15, rolling 61 higher.
Kaldur nods to the warchief and gestures the others to lay very low indeed. He then ... dives down the hillside. Trees shake and shed leaves, it's a crashing, tearing tumble down the scree and brush of the slope, his shouts lifting. He skids into the road, wide-eyed and scared, mouth opening and closing, winded, he bends, hands to knees, gesturing weakly back down the road, "Quick. There's-" pant pant, "No time." He dashes a hand at the repast, "Back-" pant pant, "There. Come on." And with that he trots off down the road, ragged stumbling.
Kaldur checked dexterity + performance at difficulty 15, rolling 7 higher.
Ian checked strength + brawl at difficulty 20, rolling 11 higher.
Aethan checked dexterity + medium wpn at difficulty 20, rolling 42 higher.
Marian checked dexterity + archery at difficulty 20, rolling 42 higher.
Icelyn checked dexterity + archery at difficulty 20, rolling 72 higher. Icelyn rolled a critical!
Marian waits for the guards to respond to their distraction before arming her bow and watching carefully to see exactly what the guards are going to do.
Icelyn watches Kaldur go with some bafflement. But then, it's not her place to wonder why, just to shoot people with arrows. To that end, she puts an arrow to her string, sights, and goes still again, like a predator lurking outside a prey den. And she holds there, one eye on Marian, waiting for the Warchief's signal.
The soldiers are caught completely flat-footed by Kaldur's abrupt PRESENCE and his words. One man literally drops his lunch to the ground and a horse helpfully steps upon it. Finally they shift themselves and two men start running after Kaldur. "Wait! Stop! You're not suppose to be there!"
The distraction is successful enough to have reduced the group to eight for now. Alas, the rest are now on their guard. Lunch is forgotten and they start drawing weapons.
Marian pulls back her string and then attacks from the trees, sending a few arrows down on the men that now have their swords drawn. She makes her to vary her aim to try to give the appearance there is more than what is actually in the trees.
Barely a second behind, Icelyn's arrows rain down. Her onslaught hits the rear of the makeshift rest spot hard, spooking the horses and, most importantly, catching one man in the back. Her second arrow ricochets away from a rock in the soil and takes down a woman at his side. They both go down, and the road echoes with swearing and confusion.
Aethan has been with the group on the ground, axe at the ready, waiting for the distraction and the archers to loose their arrows before he begins his part. When the group is herder toward them by Icelyn and Marian, he's ready to intercept, wielding his axe to clash with the one closest to hime.
The blunted arrows hit the soldiers down below and several of the horses take off from soldiers who didn't quite have a grasp on the reins. These are professionals though, and so they regroup quickly enough. One man raises a horn to his lips ready to blow, probably to alert the outpost that something is happening out here. He'll have to do it on the fly though, because they take off as a group to get behind some shelter from the archers, heading in Aethan, Ian, and Artur's direction.
Marian checked dexterity + archery at difficulty 30, rolling 28 higher.
Marian watches the chaos with a bit of a smile, enjoying how their first volley sends the horses in many directions. She shoots Icelyn a thumbs up until she sees the horn blower. She motions to Icelyn that she's got that man and then takes aim and quickly disarms that horn so the outpost can't be alerted. She leaves Icelyn in charge of taking care of the slower men that aren't rushing toward Ian, Aethan and Artur.
Ian steps out of the trees when the men running for shelter/to get away get close enough, timing it so that one of the men is practically running into him. He steps to the side and brings the man down with a reasonably well-executed throw that ends with him kneeling with a knee on the man's chest. (Probably the throw isn't supposed to end with him kneeling that way, but he makes it look like it is.) With his cane, he knocks the fallen horn (if the horn falls) close enough for him to scoop it up in what's almost a bastardized version of golf or croquet.
Nodding in response to something Marian has said to her, Icelyn reloads and continues to rain fake death on the horseless soldiers below her. She shoots, reloads and draws with a distant air about her, as if she's somewhere else entirely. Except for the intent look in her eyes, she might be daydreaming. "Four down," she murmurs, noting the one Ian has just caught.
Aethan holds position as the men get closer, until they're close enough to engage. Almost as soon as Ian steps out, he does, too, moving a little further toward another one of the men. He swings his axe toward him, though it's not meant to be a killing blow -- he seems to be attempting to disarm.
The forces are whittled down steadily, with more arrows taking down soldiers and Ian and Aethan forming a wall that they can't get through. There are only four men left, the horn guy losing his horn, but staying able to fight, and they have the option of running, or going for reinforcements.
Turning away from Aethan and Ian they make a run for the trees and dive out of sight.
Ian checked perception + survival at difficulty 30, rolling 63 higher.
Marian checked perception + survival at difficulty 30, rolling 71 higher. Marian rolled a critical!
Aethan checked perception + survival at difficulty 30, rolling 3 higher.
Icelyn checked perception + survival at difficulty 30, rolling 4 higher.
Marian writes a note on piece of paper after whispering something to Icelyn. She then aims carefully to where she knows that Ian and Aethan are and shoots a note in their direction to tell them some very important information.
Ender, a Silver Gyrfalcon arrives, delivering a message to Aethan before departing.
Ender, a Silver Gyrfalcon arrives, delivering a message to Ian before departing.
Icelyn's brow rises sharply. Without moving her body or disturbing any of the rock around her she murmurs back to Marian, one eye on the trees where the departing pairs disappeared.
Ian motions to Aethan, indicating the direction that the two groups just ran -- one towards the outpost and one away -- just as a bird delivers messages to both of them. "I'll handle the bear," he says to his brother, without hesitation. He can't really run anyway, so Aethan will have to chase down the people going for reinforcements. He's pretty good at engaging large angry animals, though.
The message is a rather disconcerting one, but Aethan doesn't hesitate too long. When his brother speaks, he just nods once, and he takes off after the group running toward the outpost.
Marian checked charm + animal ken at difficulty 50, rolling 32 lower.
Ian follows at a slower pace, moving as fast as he can, with the intent of intercepting the bear. He's not specifically looking to add a bear to his list of large animals killed, but will fight if that's necessary. His goal is just to clear the way for Aethan to catch them.
Marian gets an idea and motions to Icelyn to go chase the other group of soldiers. Then Marian does something that will hopefully distract the bear away from Ian. She pulls down her pants and in a not so subtle fashion, but under the cover of the trees, pees a river down the side of the tree. Of course because she's been holding it for a while, she's got plenty to give.
Obeying the nonveral command, Icelyn leaps to her feet and vanishes. But. She does glance back. She /can't help/ but glance back. This is a bear-trapping method she has never considered before and likely will never consider again, and the look on her face suggests she's glad to be the fully-clothed one with the bow and not the one who ... well, isn't.
In any case, she moves with stealthy speed down the slope to where Ian and Aethan are planning, and hares on after the escaping soldiers. Does anyone follow to give her a hand? She doesn't look back.
The bear... doesn't pay any attention to Marian. It's like he's got a stuffy nose or something. In fact, he not doesn't go near Marian, he turns and bumbles away from the Redrain Lady.
He is heading straight for Ian though, and looks angry when he comes face to face with the man. Can't a bear just amble through the woods without stupid humans getting in the WAY!?
The soldiers are utterly ignorant of the bear... or peeing going on. The two heading away from the fort are left alone, while Icelyn and Aethan close on the two that are heading towards the fort for reinforcements.
Aethan continues through the trees, moving as agilely as his brother does not. It's one of the main differences between them, really -- well, that and about ten years. But still. He presses forward as quickly as he can to stop the pair before they manage to reach the fort. The other two will hopefully be able to be taken care of afterwards.
Ian does his best to limit his annoying human way-getting. He's not going to try to fight the bear if he can avoid it. Just... detain it long enough for Aethan and Icelyn to get past its path. His flat expression has an almost serene quality to it as his fast moving eyes take in the situation, the bear, the way that it moves. He's not going to try to fight it, but it's pretty clear that he's making himself ready to do so if that's what's necessary.
Marian swears under her breath when she realizes her ploy doesn't distract the bear. She pulls up her pants and grabs her bow, while she moves in position to defend Ian. She tries if she can this round get off a few shots with the blunted arrows to convince the bear that messing with humans just isn't worth it.
Ian checked dexterity + dodge at difficulty 30, rolling 28 higher.
Marian checked dexterity + archery at difficulty 30, rolling 11 higher.
Aethan checked dexterity + medium wpn at difficulty 15, rolling 36 higher.
Icelyn checked dexterity + archery at difficulty 15, rolling 41 higher.
Icelyn catches up to Aethan and paces him through the trees. "Take the one on the left," she murmurs to him as they run. "I'll try for the one on the right." ARchery is more difficult in the trees, but she has no hand weaponry. So she draws and shoots as soon as she has her target in view, aiming to shoot him in the back.
The bear has ZERO interest in not attacking Ian. He has offended the bear, and so those claws reach for the Ian but the bear doesn't manage to snag him. Instead, blunted arrows pepper the bear's backside and he rawrs loudly, standing up to his full height. He isn't going to be going away.
The two men that Icelyn and Aethan attack are quickly overtaken. They go down under the onslaught and aren't able to get back to the base.
It's now just the bear. And those other two guys who went the other direction. What are they even doing now?
Ian steps out of the way of an enormous paw in a smooth motion; he moves slowly, taking his step with care, and yet somehow isn't there when the bear swings for his head. He shifts his grip on his cane and draws from within it a wickedly sharp alaricite sword. He's still using the cane's body -- the "sheath" he drew the sword from -- as his primary weapon, however, in a continued attempt to discourage the bear and send it off in another direction without actually having to try to kill it. Even if that's looking less and less likely.
Ian is also keeping in mind the direction that the other people running away went, because he'd rather the bear not go in that direction, either. Weaponizing a bear against people who aren't really his enemies would be a bit much.
Aethan glances briefly to Icelyn when she catches up with him, and again he doesn't hesitate or think too much about it, just nods with a little wave of his hand to acknowledge he's heard. He turns that way toward the second one as well as she'd said, turning the axe around to knock the man in the side of the head. It's not hard enough to cause permanent damage, but it does bring him down.
Marian swears under her breath as the stubborn bear refuses leave Ian be. She drops down from the tree, where she's sitting and then roars a challenge to the bear that's facing off on Ian. She puts away her bow and is about to demonstrate how to wrestle a bear. Not that Marian has done that before but she's watched Darren in the ring and decides to give it a try.
Icelyn checked dexterity + archery at difficulty 30, rolling 21 higher.
Marian checked dexterity + brawl at difficulty 40, rolling 9 higher.
Once Icelyn's man is down with a blunted arrow mark on his back, she pays him no more mind. Instead, she whirls back around to look up the road to where Ian and Marian are facing off the bear.
"Princess! This will /not/ be ending like the last time we met!" she hollers up the path at Marian. Not, it seems, just to remind her of her past of being bitten by sharks, but to attract the bear's attention. If and when it looks her way, she has an arrow on the string, and lets fly right at its face. The arrow may be blunted, but getting hit in the face /hurts/. Perhaps enough to scare their friend off.
Aethan checked perception + survival at difficulty 30, rolling 9 lower.
Ian sidesteps another swipe from the bear before Marian can barrel into it. He looks remarkably calm about all of this, especially given that there's a bear looming over him in angry bear fashion. His serene expression makes it pretty clear that none of this is worrying him. As though he's of the opinion he's not in any real danger, right now.
Marian grins when the arrow makes it's mark and distracts the bear. Then Marian moves in and grabs the bear from behind, wrestling it to the ground. She uses the lower center of gravity to pull him to the ground and primarily depends on her strong legs to pin him. This is rather impressive considering that this is the first time Marian has ever tried to do this.
Rysen arrives from nearby - totally out of breath - just in time to see Marian drag a bear to the ground. "Gods and spirits," he says under his breath. "She's testing herself against every one of nature's beasts."
Most eyes are focused on the bear, and Mariam doing something that involves her pants being up WTIH the bear. The creature goes down and it has had ENOUGH. It's not going to stick around to wait for more harassment, but instead wiggles out from Marian and backs - then runs- away. All is successful!
Or it would be. Except that the two them who had headed away from the outpost have used the distraction to circle back around. The sound of a trumpet breaks the air from within the outpost as the doors start to swing open. Reinforcements are on their way. Now it's up to the group to get away before they get caught.
There's a flash of irritation in Ian's eyes, just for a moment. He looks towards the outpost, and then fades into the woods.
Hearing the trumpet blast, and noticing the bear run off, Rysen frowns, trying to get his breathing under control. "I know I didn't just run all the way up here to turn around and run again," he says, gritting his teeth and running a gloved hand through his sweaty hair.
Aethan hears that trumpet, and there's a little grunt of annoyance that escapes him, too. He leaves the man who's been knocked out, and turns back toward where they'd come, slipping into the woods again and away.
Marian grins at Rysen and slaps him on the back after her little tussle with the bear, "Well my friend, I'm afraid that's exactly what you need to do if you don't want to get caught."
Marian then slips into the forest to blend in and hopefully not get caught.
Icelyn casts a glance over her shoulder towards the outpost, looking rather betrayed. "It seems you id, Lord Crovane," she says quietly, fingering her bow. "Let's go." She nods to him and fades back into the trees, bow in hand.
Rysen laughs wryly at Marian and Iclyn's words. "Just my luck," he mutters as he turns to follow the others into the cover of the trees.
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