When last we left our heroes, they had just captured mind-controlling segregationist elves that are oddly pro-orc and anti-human, and several of them have escaped.
Bo looks for a magic bow and finds one that looks like it may be magic, but it’s the wrong size and wrong type of pull. It will take him a great deal of time to practice and relearning to use the thing. (He does have Nwalme look it over to see if he can tell if it’s magic or cursed or what not.)
Araphor sends Stormdancer up in the air. She spots two groups: 3-4 and 3. Araphor does his best to help coordinate the hunting.
20 minutes after they left, one of the hunting party frogmarched in a wounded dark elf.
Bo fades back to keep an arrow on the prisoner from far enough back that he’s out of range – hopefully, anyway. Araphor recommends keeping the prisoners unconscious and that they do more coordinating than actual escaped prisoner hunting. Guthwyn prefers a more hands-on approach and wants to ride them down and catch them, herself. That may have to do with the fact that she learned that all but two of her bodyguards were killed in the escape attempt. And the two are very injured.
Nwalme is healed up and ready to figure out what to do next – question the prisoner to find out about their regrouping plan? Or determine if they’re after a specific target?
The prisoner sent to Nwalme telepathically, “I just want to go home.” Nwalme finds out that they’re conscripts and the wizards have their families. The wizards are evil and some of his former friends have done some evil things.
This group of elves have been coming west for 30 years or so, they’d find a new settlement and pacify it. Take slaves, etc…
About 15 years ago the cousins (elves that they hadn’t seen) came and found them. They started trading. They heard about the rising power in the east. They heard about the blue twins. They’ve done some incredible things: healing the sick, stopping a volcano, etc… Many of the elves consider them gods.
The prisoner was very happy he was captured. He feels that most of the elves are some of the most powerful mages, he’s seen. Himself, he has a natural aptitude for magical strength that can be tapped in ritual magic. Nwalme, always distrustful, verifies what the prisoner is thinking with sense emotion, detect lie, and his telepathy. Once Nwalme felt that the prisoner was telling the truth, Nwalme thawed (infinitesimally) and told him that there wasn’t much that they could do at the moment; he’d have to be a prisoner for a while.
The big thing that Nwalme learned was the leader of the expedition was one of those that escaped. (It looks like we have a way for Guthwyn to hunt and still be in charge.)
Nwalme used the prisoner’s knowledge of the leader to successfully cast a seeker spell. He can tell the leader is heading north/north west, back toward the lake where we found them initially. He’s hurrying, but not quite running.
We quickly decide that Araphor, our best tracker, is the best choice to lead the group to catch the fleeing elves: the leader and two others. We go along with three hobster bodyguards for Araphor; it’s nice to all be back in our little assault group again.
The hobsters busily repair the camp and clear around it, so that they can see in and out easier.
We think we know where the elves are going. They have a half hour lead on us, but Nwalme’s Pathfinder spell let’s us know that he’s two miles away and gives us a route to get there. We’re gaining.
About four hours later, we meet up with the three hobsters that were chasing them. Two continue, one fills us in: they’re 500 yards ahead and pausing regularly. The hobsters have been waiting for them to camp, so that they can set up an ambush, but now that we have numbers, he thinks that a frontal attack might be the best option.
Guthwyn wants two groups and a pincer maneuver. Bo asks whether they were able to get ranged weapons; Araphor (through Stormdancer) can tell they have swords, but no ranged weapons.
We don’t know much about the terrain, so Araphor recommends just running them down. We have the numerical advantage: ten of us to three of them.
The attack begins! They’re out of range, but we’re charging. Stormdancer sees that they’ve spotted us. The elves find a spot with a couple of trees and a rock to give them a bit of cover and protect themselves from being ridden down or lanced.
Nwalme wants to eyeball the land and teleport in behind them. Bo is looking for the high ground to prepare to snipe down upon them; it’s not present, so he gets 10 yards away and starts aiming. Araphor prepares by casting walk through plants.
The dark elves all have swords, one has a 6’ wooden staff (one assumes it’s for magical distance touching).
Guthwyn called out to surrender or die. As we don’t speak the same language, it’s not really doing much good. Guthwyn and her guards charge forward as a clump. The leader casts a spell and water opened up around the chargers. Some of them are struggling to deal with the new pool of water that just opened off under them. Guthwyn swims without a problem. Unfortunately, some of her guards are struggling. Guthwyn’s full armor isn’t helping as much as she might like in the water.
More water pools open up the dark elves’ spells.
Bo aims for two rounds and then fires. Luck be a lady, tonight! Critical success to take out the crouching ritual mage. He prepared another arrow and moved to get another shot.
Guthwyn and the hobsters do their best to clamber out of the pool. While they’re doing that Araphor jumps over them (and the pool) to get into the fight.
While they all have everyone’s attention, Nwalme teleports in behind the elves and uses the Strike Blind in his curse missile staff to get the leader. She shrugs off the curse; Nwalme realizes that the leader isn’t an elf, nor a male. He thinks that she might be a maia – a lesser god.
Araphor charges, but his strike is parried effortlessly. The other elf moves to attack Araphor, who is able to parry himself. Guthwyn and her guards charge to attack the elf and the maia, but fail. One of the hobbits did his best to snipe in, which hit the maia for no effect.
Araphor and the hobsters attacks are largely ineffective. The maia and the dark elf both seem to be very good with the sword, parrying attacks without much trouble. But unfortunately, the dark elf is no match for Guthwyn. She knocks the dark elf unconscious with a single blow.
Nwalme successfully deals a vicious Death Touch to the maia. Touching her also let Nwalme know that she was indeed a maia – a very, very powerful one. The power radiates from her palpably.
After moving into position and aiming for two rounds, Bo is about to let fly when the maia disappears. Nwalme is pretty sure that she did some sort of a watery teleport.
Nwalme tries to use the water she disappeared into to try to cast a Seeker spell again. He learns that she’s not within a mile, but within 50 miles. His vision of her places her on the south side of the Sea of Rhun. A bitter defeat, but at least at the moment, we’re safe from her for the moment.
Guthwyn is ready to charge after her immediately. Stormdancer is sent to try to spot her. Bo and Nwalme caution getting word to the Empress.
Stormdancer spots her and sees that she’s bleeding profusely as she gathers driftwood to build a raft. The fifteen minutes that takes is enough to get the mages back to full. We’re about two hours ride from there.