Chapter 12: In a Rush

Rives silently sobs his way to the top of the ladder, the sounds of battle doing nothing to bolster his confidence or improve his mood.

Kenjin nods to his counterpart and sets off to locate the lieutenant in the sea of confusion. For half a second he considered ignoring the order and instead sticking by her side. If there were Gnolls on that ladder, and they made it to the top before she could slide it off the wall, she would be hard pressed to fight them off. Kenjin had to fight that thought from his mind though.

"She takes the same risks you do, Ken," Kenjin chastised himself mentally. "Do not take that from her with a selfish motivation."

As Marin hurries across the southern battlements to the recently raised ladder, Ken circles the battlements in the other direction, looking for the Lieutenant. Moments later, the trapdoor on the tower just north of the gate opens and another squad of soldiers emerges, led by the company commander. "Archers take positions!" he orders half the men, while his sword directs the rest to join the fray against the gnolls that are making their way to the top. There are three atop the wall now, and one man of the 7th is down on the cold stones.

From down below, there is a sullen BOOM that shakes the walls and echoes through the open courtyard. The sound begins to repeat, quite rhythmically, as though someone is using the watchtower as their personal, gigantic drum.

Caedmon and Leo reach the top; the former rushes to join the archers, having heard Wyndshof's order, while the latter is in hot pursuit of Marin.

As she closes in on the ladder, Marin can already hear the heavy panting of a gnoll getting close to the battlements...

Alelip labors his way up the stairs, cursing his bad leg as he does so. At the top of the stairs, he hears the first boom, and for a brief moment looks panicked, as his mind quickly deciphers what that sound means.

As he looks around, he sees Kenjin and Leo, and calls to them over the din, "Leo, Kenjin! The gnolls are trying to break down the gate! Go to the gate and see if you can brace it!"

As he does so, he rushes over to try and reach the Lieutenant, climbing up onto the battlements to get a good
Dice Roll:
d20 Results: 6 (Total = 9)
view of how many gnolls are laying siege to the watchtower.

"Sir," Rives calls out to Alelip as he hears about the gates, "let me get the horses ready. The gnolls are so much bigger than me, the nearly killed me last time" the boy says with a strong edge of fear in his voice. "If the gates fall we can run down the gnolls with the horses. It will save the horses and buy time for everyone to escape through the caves."

Kenjin hesitated and eyes focused on Marin. If he went to the gate she would be far enough away that he would not be able to lend assistance if she were in danger. It was a proposition that he was not at all comfortable with. Nevertheless, if those gates were breached they could all die. Begrudgingly the warrior nodded and made his way down to the gate to brace it with whatever he could find.

OOC: DM, could you give me a quick tally of the PC's present and their effective classes?

Growling softly with determination, Marin took the extreme of the ladder and pushed it with all her strenght

"Give up!, You'll never get here, you beast, go back to your land and... leave. us . in. peace!" she thought and almost shouted the last part in her effort to bring down the stair.

Marin plants one booted foot on the top of the ladder and gives a mighty shove. There is creaking, and hoots of alarm, and the ladder hangs perilously balanced on end for the better part of a second. Then, ponderously, it starts leaning away from the watchtower wall. The alarm turns to panic as several gnolls jump from the ladder; all come crashing down to earth in a jumbled heap.

Leo matches Ken stride for stride as the two men grimly rush toward the courtyard. Rives is only a few steps behind, hesitating long enough to see Alelip lamely charge toward the fight and assume no answer means 'yes' to his request concerning the horses.

Caedmon joins the other archers just as their first volley sails down the height of the wall. A couple of gnolls sustain minor injuries, but it isn't enough to slow the advance of the raging army. Alelip peers down over the walls and sees that there must be a full century or more in the attack, for in addition to the axe-wielding footsoldiers, there are also archers...

Two of the enemy arrows find their marks, one in poor Pete Olman, who was struggling to get another arrow nocked, and another in Alelip's already gimpy leg. Pete falls to the stones, badly injured but likely to survive--assuming the gnolls can be beaten back.

The battle on the tops rages on, neither side yet gaining a clear advantage. The defenders have managed to prevent any more gnolls from scaling the ladders for the moment.

Pete takes 4 damage.
Alelip takes 4 damage.

Marin didn't bother to restrain the cry of joy as her trick worked

"Get that, gnolls... we may be few, but we're strong!" she said to the invading army, feeling superior for a moment. An arrow flying nearby got her to earth though and she quickly changed her sword for her bow and took post in the same tower, looking for a sure target. She was not going to waste any arrows on gambling shots.

"Give us a chance to prove ourselves, You that look from above. These are brave men, with noble souls. Let us defend our loved ones and our future, give us your blessings in this time of need and fear" she thought while she looked

"Let's show them what is the army of the Red Prince made of! Let's show them the strenght of our spirits!" she cried for anyone that could hear above all the noise of the battle.

Breathing deeply a couple of times to calm her nerves and her racing heart, she looked once again for a target in the field and as the thought she got one, she let fly an arrow and prepared the next one already looking for a new target, not bothering to see if the first shot got its mark

Alelip curses as the arrow penetrates his leg, then grimaces for a second while he reaches down and, with the skill of a surgeon, snaps the arrow about six inches from the head, so that it doesn't catch on anything, but also can be pulled out with some ease.

He continues on his search for the Lieutenant, while drawing his sword in the meantime.


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