After settling our affairs in Sorpigal, the party went to rest at the only tavern. Quickly after entering, Hofniel was addressed by two individuals. They introduced themselves as Dale and his daughter Gwen, two villagers from the small town of Peloria. Seeing Hofniel’s mark of Pelor, they instantly knew they could trust him and requested of the party to help fend of an imminent orc attack. Apparently, while the party was making a quick gold, the orcs had continued ravaging the southern regions of Arath. Peloria was now a home for many refugees displaced by the onslaught.
The party, feeling compassion (and guilt since they ignored the orcs earlier) swore their help and promptly left the next day. Heisenberg had some training in town to complete, and thus did not join the party. Dale and Gwen only had one horse, thus it became the beast of burden while everyone but Belladona walked on foot. After a day and a half of safe travel, a group of four individuals sprung from the bushes and demanded our goods. The party was having none of it, and quickly engaged.
Unbeknownst to both the party and the bandits, there was a druid named Dobby who had been tracking the bandits and was hiding in a different patch of brush. She had been hunting the bandits, for she knew they were illegal poachers! From the shadows, she began attacking a rear bandit, who had no clue what was happening. The other three bandits did not notice, for at this moment Queso charged forward and slayed the closest bandit, rending him in two. Hofniel took this opportunity to persuade the other two engaged bandits to flee for their lives, which they did… but not quickly enough. Elora quickly buried a crossbow bolt into one’s leg, and Queso impaled the second. Dobby, taking advantage of Queso’s distraction, was able to incapacitate the rear bandit.
Now you may be asking yourself, “Where was Belladonna?” Well, she was resting on the horse and wasn’t aware of the situation. But Elora woke her, and Belladonna contributed by bounding the living bandits. Seeing how Dobby had helped the party, they decided to be friends and interrogate the bandit with the wounded leg. Hofniel and Queso decided to try out a “Good Guard, Bad Guard” routine. After prepping their strategy, Hofniel went in first with “Good Guard”. However, due to the heat of the day and being a bit peckish, Hofniel did a poor job soothing the bandit [interpreted “rolled a 1”] and began berating and kicking the already injured bandit. Then came in Queso, who overplayed his “Bad Guard” [interpreted “rolled ANOTHER 1”] and hurled the bandit over his head, cracking the bandit’s neck on the landing.
Thankfully, they had another bandit to interrogate. This time, they started off with “Bad Guard” and it worked perfectly. The bandit told the location of their nearby camp, where the party found some horses, gold, and the pelts they had been poaching. The party let Dobby dispose of the pelts in an honoring way, and let her pass judgement on the remaining bandit. Based on his actions against nature, she sentenced him to DBQ (Death By Queso) and joined the party in their endeavors.
After a new day of travel, they arrived at Peloria, which was bustling with refugees. After a quick inspection, it was apparent that few in the town would be of any help against orcs. There were a total of 2 archers, excluding Gwen the ranger, that could help them defend the town. Furthermore, they were lacking in basic defense supplies since the blacksmith was in a state of depression. Although Hofniel and Queso tried to convince the blacksmith, it was only with Elora and Dobby’s comforting words that he recovered enough to help. Next for the town’s defense, the party asked for some poison from the local wizard. Even though he was a few eggs short of an omelette, he was able to procure some poison for the party. Even better, Belladonna was able to abscond with his poisonous frog. The final thing to check was the walls. Hofniel did identify one extremely weak spot in the wall, which they got the local mason to patch up with the help of some refugees.
In preparation for the coming battle, Hofniel referenced a book on orc battles. The party then decided to booby trap the former weak point in the wall. With the final placement of the majority of the party in the towers and Hofniel and Queso at the gate, the party waited. Then tension in the air was almost as thick as Queso’s stench. Suddenly, Dobby noticed that the wildlife was suddenly silenced and warned the town. No sooner had the alert gone out before a dense line of orcs marched from the treeline toward the little town. With great skill, Elora was able to attack an orc at quite a long range, which triggered a battle cry and rush from the enemy.
Queso and Hofniel held the door while the villagers and rest of the party trimmed the orcs using their projectile weapons. Dobby summoned a vicious wolf to attack the orcs on the outside of the wall. When the orcs were in range, Hofniel blessed himself and Queso with protection before they threw open the gates and met the orcs head on. Orc after orc fell as the party attacked them both on the ground and through the air.
However, after about half of the orcs had fallen, the party began to hear slight tremors… that sounded like large footprints. A magical fog then appeared at the treeline and started advancing toward the town. By this time, Hofniel, Queso, and Belladonna were all on the ground slaying orcs as quickly as they could. They had only a few orcs left when the extremely close fog lifted, revealing a huge ogre and orc shaman. Queso met the challenge head on and charged the giant being, while Hofniel and Belladonna tried to clear the final few orcs. The archers aimed at the shaman, and Elora engaged in a mage’s duel against him. Dobby was using her companion owl to deliver her Goodberries to her allies, and about this time the ogre landed a severe blow against Queso. But after a quick healing from Hofniel, he unleashed his barbarian rage and reentered the fray. Belladonna slayed the final stray orc, then hid under his corpse. While the ogre was facing Queso in battle, she sprung out and let out a devastating barrage along the ogre’s leg. Through the teamwork of the archers and Elora, the shaman fell. But the ogre still stood. Then suddenly, time seemed to stand still. All eyes focused on Gwen upon a tower, arrow nocked and aimed at the ogre. Channelling the force of nature itself, she released the arrow that fell the terrible beast.
The dust settled, blood had flowed, but the town still stood. The clerics were overjoyed and showered the party with gifts and thanks, including a special Shield of Pelor and protective talisman. Then, from the back of the library, one scholar produced an ancient parchment depicting some musical greatsword, of which Queso was extremely interested. But since he could not read, all he could do was enjoy the picture.