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Against the Shadow  |  Forum  |  Midnight & RPGs  |  GM's Corner (Moderators: Bleak Knight, Glacialis)  |  Topic: The Lure
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Spell Energy / Taint +12/-3
Posts: 715

« on: September 21, 2006, 07:26:32 AM »

The rune cycle continues.


The Lure

The air is filled with the all too familiar smell of freshly spilled blood, sweat, and charred and burning wood.  This once peaceful glade is now an abattoir, sparing neither orc nor fey.  Hundreds of orc and orog died to take this small fey stronghold.  At the edge of the glade a dire lion is caught in orc nets, while its mate lies dead at its feet.  The orcs have begun to torture the beast whose roars of pain and fury only goad the orcs to further cruelty.

As the remaining orcs remove the dead with an efficiency born from frequent practice, a dark robed, almost elegant, figure carefully steps through the carnage.  At his side is a huge black boarhound whose coat gleams as it reflects the still raging fires.  Trailing slowly behind is another robed figure, hunched over and obviously in some pain. Just ahead is a mighty oak whose trunk has been shattered by some tremendous force.  The oak is scarred and burned and the dead fey are clustered around its base.  As the elegantly robed figure reaches the tree he turns and snarls, ‘quickly, you have fallen behind yet again and are wasting precious time.”

The other robed figure flinches at the words as if expecting a blow that thankfully doesn’t fall.  As he rushes forward, his hood slips revealing the face of a very young man, almost a boy.  The face is covered in bruises.  At some point in the recent past, the young man was savagely beaten.  “Yes master, I will hurry.”

The inside of the tree is a marvel, with a room naturally carved from the then living wood, with stairs leading high up into the forest’s canopy.  Once inside, it’s clear that fearsome magic was unleashed, scorching the wood walls and at least a dozen orc an orog.  The fey defenders have been literally hacked into pieces and their bodies strewn across the room.  In its center, a lone fey body is draped over a large wooden object with figures of the great beasts of the Erethor all around it’s base.  The elegantly robed figure, his silver symbol of the dark God swaying from his neck, casually kicks the fey’s body off the object.  “When this fort was breached, this” pointing at the object, “throbbed with energy.  That thing,” kicking the fey’s body, “released it somehow and it bought the lions here.”  Reaching back to stroke the great boarhound, “there’s no power left in it is there my pet?”

The boarhound, its eyes crimson and filled with dark malice, sniffs once at the object and then turns away from the object seeking more interesting items amongst the dead. 

The legate, listening to the roars of the captured dire lion, smiles, “if we could find out how this item is powered and used, it may allow us to lure the fey’s allies to us at a time of our choosing.  More fodder for the pits that can be broken to our God’s service.”  Turning to face the cowering young man, “it is your job to determine how this is used.  Failure … would be very unfortunate.”

The Lure is actually a fey rune built around the spell Summon Nature’s Ally.  The rune is normally carved or shaped from living wood.  The shapes in the rune determine what type of animal is called/summoned.  In this case, the rune was keyed to the lions/dire lions that roam this area of the Erethor.  It’s possible that a particular rune can be keyed to a variety of different animals.  A normal rune has a set number of charges and is activated by touching an animal’s figure and speaking a ritual phrase in high elven asking for the animals’ aid.

In this case, the fey knew that their fortress was going to fall and they tried to drain the rune before it was captured.  The rune unfortunately called two dire lions that attacked the orcs.  The elegantly robed man is a powerful legate who would like to use the rune to weaken the fey-dire animal alliance.  His young charge is a channeler who is under his ‘care’ and has been tasked with determining how to use the rune.  Not knowing high elven and having no experience with runes, he will most likely fail in his task and find out how unfortunate that failure will truly be.
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Against the Shadow  |  Forum  |  Midnight & RPGs  |  GM's Corner (Moderators: Bleak Knight, Glacialis)  |  Topic: The Lure
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