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Year 2950: Those who Tarry no Longer


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Arton of Gram

Arton wrenched his body free of the Orc spear, causing even more damage but giving him back his leverage. The warm trickle of blood was not comforting, nor was his knowledge that orcs sometimes used poison. Raising his sword arm he heard a great rushing, and his visage grew dim. It was as if a shadow had covered the world. He had read enough death accounts to recognize the end was near. Stepping forward he aimed his final blow, determined to die steadfast at his post. A mighty hand gripped his torso, in panic he thought one of the orc leaders had tackled him. Desperate, he struck his blow at the foe before him, only to see the orc fall despite his clean miss... or was he rising? As the ground fell away and wind buffeted his face, the dim memory that Irime had called for help rose to his mind. Twisting his body, he saw the great flapping wing of an eagle. And another below him, possibly carrying Thammegil. Careful not to drop his sword and strike his new allies, Arton fumbled until he grasped his scabbard and secured his blade. 


The view was enthralling, he drank in what he could committing it to memory. Never would he have this perspective of the world again, he thought. Two great forests one home to the elves, the other home to darker things separated by the Misty Mountains. He idly wondered if he could make out the famed Red Horn pass from here. The throbbing in his side was momentarily forgotten.


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spacer.pngspacer.pngAfter a short but exhilarating flight, the Eagles carried the company to their eyries. Along the way, the one that bore Bláin complained many times about his heavy burden, making biting remarks to the wounded dwarf about his weight and choice of armor, and urging him to do away with his shield. But despite his words, he carried him safely and soundly, until at last he placed him on a stony ledge high in the mountains, beside the others.


There the companions were allowed to rest for a while whilst the Eagles slowly gathered and spoke in their tongue. Those amongst them who knew the mountains well, or who had studied maps of Thorin's journey, could deduce that this was not the main eyrie of the Eagles, but must have been another outpost not far from it. Regardless, the pause was a welcome one after the intensity of the battle and the following flight, and those that could had some time to gather their strength and wits about them.


The Lord of the Eagles came not long after. His wingspan was great, greater than any other's, and on his head he bore a crown of dwarf-wrought gold. As he landed on the same ledge, his arrival was truly a sight to behold, and he addressed Irimë first of all, speaking in the common tongue.


“We heard your song on the wind, but it was the light that guided us to you. Long has there been friendship between your kind and mine, and we came when we were needed.”


For her part, the lady thanked him for heeding her prayers humbly, and so the Great Eagle turned to the companions next, and spoke to them:


“Gaerthor, one of my chieftains, was grievously wounded as he rescued you from the Orcs. Tell me, whose lives did he buy with his courage?”



A few notes on the mechanics:

  1. The company is afforded some time to rest before the arrival of the Lord of the Eagles. This allows them to make a Short Rest: All non-wounded companions can recover Endurance equal to their Strength.
  2. This next part will be a Council. The goal of the company is to convince the Eagles to carry them to their final destination, which I say counts as a Reasonable request (Resistance: 3). 
  3. What you must do is choose a PC to make the Introduction now. This PC must roll an appropriate skill (Awe, Courtesy, or Riddle, depending on the approach). The outcome determines the time limit, and potentially the consequences of failure if the council is failed. 
  4. The book says to award good RP with 1-2 bonus dice (d6).


Another thing you can do is try to heal the wounded eagle, with Healing, but probably after the Council has ended (unless you argue for urgency).


Good luck!


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Practically collapsing under the pain of his wounds, Thammegil hefted his blade for one last valiant strike against the Orcs facing him.  He felt that this was the end, that their journey was over even before it had begun, yet still he would not abandon hope.

Suddenly, he felt the grip of something mighty around his chest, and felt the world falling away below him.  "So, this is how it ends" he thought to himself before allowing himself to pass out...


... some time later, he found himself sat against a rocky outcrop.  No sign of any Orcs, but an abundance of Eagles!


Eagles, the majestic birds of the mountains, giants of the skies, often seen from afar by those with the eyes to see, but rarely was one afforded the privilege of meeting them so closely.  Suddenly, he became aware of one speaking in the common tongue, and the lady Irimë responding to it in kind.  He listened with rapt attention and respect.




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  • 2 weeks later...

BlainBláin, son of Lofar

Culture: Dwarves of Durin's FolkCultural Blessing – Redoubtable / Naugrim: You halve the Load rating of any armour you're wearing (rounding fractions up), including helms (but not shields). Cannot use Great Bows, Great Spears, and Great Shields.

Endurance Str + 22, Hope Heart + 8, Parry Wits + 10

Axes or Swords 2, Any 1

Languages: Khuzdul, Common
 | Standard of Living: Prosperous | AttributesStrength 6
Hearts 4
Wits 4
| CallingTreasure-Hunter

Favoured Skills (choose two): Stealth, Scan

Additional Distinctive Feature: Burglary: This venerable talent includes pickpocketing, lock picking, and, in general, any shadowy way to get a hold of possessions of others or access protected areas.

Shadow Path: Dragon-Sickness: Adventurers who find themselves on the Road to seek lost riches run the risk of catching the age-old disease capable of turning a pile of enchanted gold into bitter ashes. As the Shadow tightens its grip on their hearts, the world shrinks around them and their closely guarded possessions.
Distinctive FeaturesFierce, Cunning.
 | Adventure Points: 0 | Experience Points: 0 | Skill Points: 0 | ExpendituresSwords 2 -> 3: 6 EXP
Stealth 0 -> 2: 3 EXP
Awareness 0 -> 1: 1 EXP

Valour: 1Attack rolls made with a Keen weapon score a piercing blow also on a result of 9 on the feat die. | Wisdom: 1When inflicting Special Damage in combat, add +1 to your strength rating on a heavy blow and a +1 to the feat die numerical result on a Pierce. | Endurance: 26/26(28) | Load: 16 | Fatigue: 0[+6] | Hope: 12 | Shadow: 0 [0] | Parry: 14(17) | Weary: No | Miserable: No |Wounded: No Injury: N/A | BackgroundBláin is a simple dwarf. He enjoys smithing and good food - but the smithing techniques of his father, and his father have never satisfied him; his head remained firmly 'in the clouds' as Lofar put it. Bláin dreams of the past skills of the smiths of Khazad-Dum, of the things that could be crafted again if they are rediscovered. Of course, such noble arts deserve only the finest in material - that is why his focus is to find and return the past riches the dwarves have lost. Most dont think finding the arts of the old masters are possible - after all, the world slowly wanes, what return to the glories of old could there be? And yet, the return to the Mountain was the beginning of another golden era for the folk of Durin - so much had been reclaimed - why could there not be more?

Skills: Body 6(TN 14)Awe ▣▣☐☐☐☐
Athletics ▣☐☐☐☐☐
Awareness ▣☐☐☐☐☐
Hunting ☐☐☐☐☐☐
Song ▣☐☐☐☐☐
+Craft ▣▣☐☐☐☐
 | Heart 4(TN16)Enhearten ☐☐☐☐☐☐
+Travel ▣▣▣☐☐☐
Insight ☐☐☐☐☐☐
Courtesy ▣☐☐☐☐☐
Battle ▣☐☐☐☐☐
| Wits 4(TN16)Persuade ☐☐☐☐☐☐
+Stealth ▣▣☐☐☐☐
+Scan ▣▣▣☐☐☐
Explore ▣▣☐☐☐☐
Riddle ▣▣☐☐☐☐
Lore ▣☐☐☐☐☐
| WeaponsSwords ▣▣▣☐☐☐
Bow ▣☐☐☐☐☐
 | War GearWeapon | Damage | Injury | Notes | Load
Sword 4 16 Keen 2
Bow 3 14 2

Armour/Shield | Protection | Parry | Load
Coat of Mail 4d 12(6)
Helm 1d 4(2)
Shield +2 4
| EquipmentTreasure Rating: 90
War Gear: Coat of Mail, Helm, Shield
Nameless Pony: Vigor 2
 | Soft-Sole Boots(Stealth)As someone who has to do a lot of travelling, Bláin believes comfortable boots are a necessity - but even more importantly, perhaps is the natural advantage of such boots creaking a lot less when you are not trying to wake the entire population of the Misty Mountains' goblins. | Hooded Lantern(Scan)Dwarves' eyes are sharp in the dark - though perhaps not quite as sharp as the elves', though they would never admit it. But though the dark is fine for dark business, shedding a bit of light has ever been the way to see new perspectives... | Fine Rope and Hook(Athletics)There are few things as necessary in an adventurer's toolkit as a good, quality length of rope. Weaved by the excellent craftsmen of Dale, the hook forged by Lofar for his son, Bláin treasures this. 

Bláin awoke to cold stone - a comfort he did not expect - and a voice he did not recognize. Managing to lift his head, he had surveyed their surroundings, and their hosts, and dully recalled how he was carried here. When asked the question, he had attempted an answer, but all that came out was a hoarse, unintelligible whisper. He made an effort to sit up, leaning against the rock, sliding slightly across the ground, then, using his shield as leverage, managed to force himself to stand. The wound the orc inflicted had weighed on him heavily. He could not manage to speak, but instead raised his eyes to the chief of the Eagles and bowed his head as far as he dared without falling over, in silence.

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Arton of Gram

Arton bounced unceremoniously off the stone ledge as his feathered benefactor was clearly eager to relieve himself of the human's weight. He watched with great curiosity as the Eagles wheeled and landed. It was one thing to see a red tailed hawk drift in the wind or wheel overhead on the open plains, but quite another to be in the midst of an entire clutch of giant Eagles as they wheeled and landed. Arton had not given much thought to the old stories that mentioned allies among the animals. The wargs he knew and despised. How had the goblins kept their wolvish allies when the free people had clearly lost much knowledge of their own? Perhaps the stories about the horses of the Rohirrim were true as well... 


He would study the matter more once they had reached Rivendell, he decided.


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Elhadron staggered to his feet and then bowed deeply among the eagles of the eyrie. "I am Elhadron, my lords, and these are my companions, several of whom are also grievously injured in defense of the Lady here, whose identity I cannot say is granted to me to share without her bidding. But I am a healer, certainly no master of the healing arts nor a sage of any great wisdom, but with your permission, I might treat the wounded, starting with your chieftain, for we owe a great debt." 


He paused to pull out a small jar of healing ointment, awaiting permisison. 


Edited by Varon777 (see edit history)
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spacer.pngThe Lord of the Eagles did not say much at first, but he inspected Elhadron from head to toe, and then looked to the lady Írimë. Though he did not speak to her, he seemed expectant, seeking the fair elf's confirmation. This she did indeed provide with the subtlest of nods, but the great Eagle remained yet hesitant and reluctant.


"A kind offer." he said, but followed soon to politely decline-or at least that had been his intention. "Yet you must first look to your own companions, for I fear that some amongst your friends have suffered too, and perhaps worse than my chieftain."


No sooner had he spoken this than Gaethor approached him, and uttered a few words in his tongue, and made his will known to his chief. His Lord gave pause, but he did not prevent him from nearing the elf. Then, Gaethor extended an injured wing towards Elhadron, allowing him to inspect it.



When at last all aid that could have been offered was given to Gaethor, the Eagle seemed much better, and gladdened to have that blackened orc-dart removed from him. In the time that it had taken the elf to do this great deed, they had all been under the watchful eyes of the Lord, and now he looked on in amazement as his chieftain's wound was being treated. The skillful hands, gentle and steady, had earned them a far better introduction than any tongue could secure them. And though Elhadron's mortal companions had not done much in this, the respect gained by the elf now seemed to extend to his friends.


"Come, tell me the names of your companions, and the full tale with all detail. How did you come to stand on that hill, alone against so many?"



For the sake of expediency, I'll use that Healing roll in lieu of an Introduction. And because it was a Great Success, Counsel rules dictate that this sets the time limit to Resistance + 1, so 4. This means that you can make 4 rolls (as a group) before the Counsel ends.


We now move on to the Interaction phase. I'll rule that because of the healing of Gaethor, the Eagles' disposition has been shifted to friendly, granting everyone a bonus d6 on any social roll. Enjoy!


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Arton of Gram

"I am Arton of Gram, kin to the Rangers. The forces of Mordor have been tasked with abducting one amongst us, but that name is not within my authority to give. The companions standing here swore an oath to protect her and see her to Rivendell. For several days, we attempted to stay ahead of their pursuit. Alas, there were too many and we were unable to slip past their scouts. We chose the best ground we could find when it became clear to us that we could not outrun them. You have saved us from certain death, if ever I can repay that debt you have but to ask." 


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spacer.pngThough Arton did not give it, it was not difficult for the Lord of Eagles to guess the name of the woman the company was escorting, given her destination. He looked to her, and the lady Irimë nodded subtly, confirming the ranger's words. Then he turned his attention back to the company, and answered:


"No payment is needed. My kin remember the firstborn as friends and allies, even if our paths have grown separate of late. To Rivendell I cannot take you, but perhaps my thanes can carry you closer to your destination. But how will you ever fly, weighed down as you are with all that iron?" he added, turning his gaze to Bláin, who was still clad in his coat of ring-mail. "I do not see why dwarves or men or elves should walk bearing such burdens, and all that weight is too great for my fellows to fly with except in dire need or peril."



A small post to keep some momentum. The Lord of the Eagles seems willing to carry the company, though the exact destination is still under negotiation and is the purpose of this audience. Please include skill checks to your posts as you argue for taking you as far as they can, so that we can proceed with this scene, mechanically speaking.


In addition, the Eagles will flat out refuse to carry anyone with a Load of 15 or greater. You can use skill checks again to change their mind; it's also part of the Audience.


As already stated, every roll can add a d6 bonus unless it's something silly like insulting them.


I didn't mention previously what happened to the company's horses (I think only Elhadron had one) but... probably bad things, unless you let them go before the battle. I am good either way. You can get a new horse at the end of the adventure, but I don't think Eagle taxi would work on horses 😉

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After the task was finished, Elhadron stepped away, sealing the small pot of ointment and turning to study the others in his party, before bowing deeply to the Eagles. "As I have said, I am Elhadron of Rivendell, though of late I have spent much of my time with the errant companies of my kin or bearing messages between my lords. Have my lords any message for me to bear my lord Elrond, should we reach the destination of our journey?"





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spacer.pngspacer.png"Tell your lord that which you have already witnessed: that the orcs and wargs are getting bold of late, and stirring trouble in the Misty Mountains. I had thought their numbers much diminished after the Battle of the Five Armies, and indeed it has been so. But they suffered not the crushing blow that I had initially hoped for. They are mustering again, under some foul chieftain's black banner, no doubt. I wish that I knew more to say."


The Lord of the Eagles paused, and seemed to whisper something to lady Irimë's ear as she drew closer. She seemed to reply, and following that, he added:


"On my far-reaching flights, I have seen something in the West Nether Vales, when the dreadful mists do not conceal it. A new fortress on the moors south of the River Gladden. I do not know what it is, but I dislike it. Tread carefully if your path ever carries you there."


Having said this, he left others respond. Now it was the lady that spoke forth, and she bid the Lord of the Eagles farewell, and soon his thanes and chiefs gathered to carry the company to their destination. "To Rivendell I cannot take you, but my kin will see you returned to a safer section of the road. As for the orcs, you need not worry about them. We shall deal with that matter, and keep a watchful gaze."


One by one, the Eagles took off, each carrying a companion, and this time the flight was proven less terrifying, perhaps because they were beginning to grow accustomed to the soaring heights and open sky.



To avoid dragging this on, everyone just add 1 Fatigue. The eagles leave you on the path you were supposed to take along the High Pass, but higher, and about a day away from your meeting place with the Riders that are supposed to come from Rivendell to pick up Irimë. This +1 Fatigue represents this one day of travelling. Feel free to describe the short journey, if you want. In the next post, which will be soon (tomorrow or the day after), I will do the mechanics for ending the journey and move us to the next chapter.

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spacer.pngAfter the Eagles had departed, the company marched on. Journey's end was not far now, and just as the Eagles had promised, there was no sign of orcs here. Those amongst them who had made this crossing before, having journeyed from Eriador and across the High Pass to Wilderland, remembered these paths. But the keen eyes of Elhadron, their look-out, remained vigilant.


It would take yet another morning's marching to reach their destination. They came upon it at noon: tumbled stones and old ruins, what little remained of an old town that had once stood here. Irimë also recalled this place, but hers was a different memory, and she offered a glimpse into it for those who had ears to hear her:


“I have been here before. This was Haycombe, the trader’s town leading to the Cirith Forn en Andrath. It was built by Middle-Men with golden hair who traded over the Mountains. They were a kind folk. They held a market here, and my kin from Lindon would come sometimes, and we would dance in the snow. The Men would laugh to see us run.”


She paused and looked distant, as if reliving that old scene in her mind's eye.


“They are gone, now. Some went South, with a brave chieftain called Eorl. Others stayed, until the shadow in the forest reached out and destroyed them. Treachery brought the enemy into the town, his horrors took the people here as slaves, and then there was no more laughter in the pass.”


Her words hung heavy in the chill air. But soon she shifted the matter, and spoke of other things, less sorrowful. “The emissaries from Rivendell are to meet us here. Make camp and rest. They shall not be long in coming.”



I need a second as I update with the journey's end rules from the TOR 2 rulebook...


...and ok. This is what the rules say about Fatigue in 2nd edition:

  • Check the Fatigue your character accumulated over the journey.
  • Anyone with a mount can reduce this number by their mount's Vigour rating. I am not sure what we'll do with the mounts given the battle/Eagle escape scene. Let's just say for simplicity that you can recover your mounts later, and that this rule is in effect even if your PC currently lacks their mount.
  • Then, all Player-heroes can further reduce their accumulated Fatigue with a roll of TRAVEL. A success reduces the total Fatigue of a Player-hero by 1, plus 1 point for each 6 on the d6s rolled. As far as I can see, there's no downside to failing (except not shaking off Fatigue).
  • The remaining Fatigue takes effect, and cannot be shaken off until you are in a refuge, like a town etc. (not on the road). If it makes your PC Weary, record it.


And that is all. You can additionally use this scene to RP, treat your wounds (roll Healing for yourself or wounded companion(s), etc) or whatever else you want to do. I'll leave this for a few days so you can actually post this time before I move us forward!


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Arton of Gram

Arton winced as the eagles again lifted him into the air. It was no fault of the giant birds that they simply were not suited to carrying passengers as opposed to prey. Still, he was glad to have met them. Not every eagle accompanied them. He grinned at the sight of some few birds gliding back towards the site of the battle. Any orcs that survived would have a frightening tale to recount. Perhaps that fear would slow remaining pursuers.


Presently, the tumbled remains of an ancient village came into view and the eagles descended. It could have been any small village in an era now gone. Hundreds of such places dotted the old Northern Kingdom. Arton listened quietly to a tale of another people vanished at the hands of the Enemy. He ran a hand over a tumbled stone wall and wondered if lasting victory would ever be theirs.


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Thammegil had barely moved from where he'd been deposited by the Eagles when he was up at their Eyrie, and now made little more than a muted groan when he was once again lifted by their talons and whisked into the air.


He hurt.  Badly.  In fact, he could barely remember a time when he'd come so very close to being cut down in battle, so when the Eagle carrying him deposited him gently on the ground amongst the ruins of a village he again, merely slumped against a tumbled wall.  Still, he was beginning to regain his wits now, so with slow, deliberate moves, he began to explore his wounds.  Fishing about in his pouch for anything supplies he may be carrying to bind the worst of them.  He grunted to himself with dark humour.  He knew the Elves had their waybread - Lembas he recalled they called it.  Normally, it was akin to eating the sawdust shavings from a tavern floor, but at this point in time, he would have welcomed some for the strength and energy it was reputed to confer.


Once he had bound what of his wounds he could, he allowed his chin to drop to his chest, and shortly began to snore steadily and rhythmically.




Healing roll
[8] (1,6) (favor) = 15
tor(2,no,favor) 8,1,1,6
Travel Roll (for fatigue)
[8] (4,1) = 13
tor(2,no) 8,4,1
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  • 2 weeks later...

spacer.pngAgain, the evening drew in, the hour of the twilight now approaching. And yet Irimë slept not, but instead wandered the hillside, following the unseen path of streets that were buried centuries ago. She stepped lightly over snowfalls, remembering her vanished kin, and the lights of the market. As the stars came out overhead, she raised her voice in a song to Elbereth Starkindler.


From afar, Elhadron watched her and his resting companions. Suddenly a cold gust of wind blew from the east, unnaturally cold even for these snow-crowned peaks. Not the chill of the mountain air, but the clammy cold of sickness. Out of the corner of his eye, he saw a shadow slither through the night, quickly moving towards Irimë. In vain he tried to warn her, for it was much too swift, and still from a distance he saw her shape glimmering softly, as if surrounded by a moonlight radiance. And then the shadow was upon her, suffocating her light.


The lady cast a single, desperate glance towards Elhadron and the sleeping company... and then utter darkness befell them all.



The next part of the adventure, until its conclusion, will happen in a dream-like state. You shouldn't post anything yet; I need to frame the scene in the dream, and I will try to do so soon. But I wanted to post something in 2022 still.


Only Elhadron, being a High Elf, will recognize this dream for what it is. Irimë is struggling with a powerful spirit, but she is not strong enough to resist it alone. So she is drawing on the companions to aid her. The companions experience this spiritual struggle as a dream-like state as they are drawn into the wraith world.


Even so, Elhadron is not powerful enough to resist the pull, and is also drawn into the dream. But he is aware of what is going on. Other companions are not, as will become apparent in my next post.


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