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Messages - Stug3

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41
*scrwaled on the bottom of Jacchri's note*
 
 He was attacked on the ROAD, not within the walls...and THEY attacked first.
 Just to set things straight....

42
Development Journals and Discussion / Re: Balthazar Woll
« on: July 24, 2008, 04:07:44 pm »
After my brief incarceration at the surprisingly strong hands of Warrant Officer Kit in Haven I believed my involvement with the law was at an end...alas it was not to be so.
 
 Muhk and I were discussing some business at the Haven pond, the exact nature of our discussion I do not recall. I do however remember ribbing him on the size of his horse and something about not knowing the horse trader also sold goats...
 
 Over his shoulder I noticed one of 'Hemp's finest' acting a bit peculiar. He seemed to be wandering around a bit and I figured he might be looking for a good tree to shield him from view as he took care of some business of his own. As time went on I deduced he was not in fact looking for a spot to pee and things may be happening that warranted a bit of investigation. So being the naturally curious fool I am we moved a bit closer to have a look-see...
 
 At this point I should not be surprised that things went downhill rapidly as they tend to do with me. Our wandering gate guard ceased his wandering and made a beeline of both Muhk and myself as we stood watching on the road. His arrival was marked by some very rude comments to Muhk about his Orc blood and the associated stench followed by some rather poor excuses for insults directed at myself. Muhk was directed to leave 'the area' in accordance with the posted regulations of Hemp. We pointed out the fact that the regulation states that entry is forbidden, not use of the roads. The conversation went on like this for quite sometime and eventually more guards showed up as a show of force. With five more of 'Hemps finest' now standing behind the first seemed a bit excessive for the two of us and smacked of trouble. I tried many times to get Muhk to walk away and forget it, I even had him moving a few times but each time the guards would say something about him and he would stop again. This continued for awhile and I figured it would end peacefully...
 
 Well I again was proven wrong in my calculations of the situation. The verbal sparring continued and suddenly Muhk was being attacked by the six guards. What sparked the escalation of force I do not know but until then it had all been verbal. Now the metal was flying and six on one is pretty good odds for Muhk but seeing as we were on the road and not at the gates or in the city I found that unacceptable. Wearing nothing but my traveling coat I drew my shield and weapon as trying to drag a brawling half Orc from six city guards' unarmed seemed stupid even for me. My attempt to remove Muhk was short-lived and within seconds of my attempt I was flat on my back with two guards on me like Dwarves on ale. With two very well placed strikes...I have to give them credit on their hammer placement... It happened so fast I had time to get one word out, "Hey!" was all I could utter.
 
 Soon after Cap'n Trent arrived and informed Muhk he was responsible for the deaths of two guards...
 Cap'n grabbed Muhk's arm and Muhk told him not to be grabbing on him and if he continued to do so he would remove the Cap'ns head, well Cap made another attempt to grab Muhks arm. Muhk went for his ax but the Cap'n was too fast for him and swept out his legs and Muhk went down. Cap'n was on him even faster then his men were on me...and off to the clink went Muhk...
 
 So Muhk and I went from standing on the road conducting business to an altercation with six 'Pinks'. Least I'm not in jail too...for what I could not even guess but when you're the law you get to MAKE the law, must be nice...
 
 Well Muhk's trial is coming up soon and I'll be there unless I'm dead and then I'll be just a little late.
 
 Be interesting to see what happens...I can see a uprising in the near future if Muhk is found guilty for what ever it is they are putting him on trial for...have to see how Hemp fares when the Half-Giants, Half-Orcs and the rest of the 'undesirables' form up for a fight. What if they decide that Vehl is closed to all but them...could start some kind of race war. Not sure the world needs that, we just got the sun back.....

43
General Discussion / Re: Here we go again
« on: July 21, 2008, 05:50:24 pm »
Underway...shift colors.  ;)

44
Development Journals and Discussion / Re: Balthazar Woll
« on: July 21, 2008, 05:44:10 pm »
Well today was a first...I was thrown in jail. Drunk and disorderly I believe, not my fault... really it wasn't...
 
 A bit of back story might be in order... I met a rather 'interesting' woman not too long ago. I had been strolling innocently along the Hemp-Vehl road and saw a few familiar faces by the pond. Being the social butterfly I am I moseyed up to say hello to Trith and Muhk who seemed to be discussing something. I bid them greetings and was introduced to a woman named Raven. I don't think that is her given name (she later confirmed it was a nick name)...I'm still unsure of her actual name. Raven it seems is a fitting name, she is a bit dark and secretive and much like the bird has a fondness for shiny stuff... I asked her vocation and she replied that a jack of all trades covers it fairly well...fair enough. (what would I reply to a similar question?)...Sometime was spent conversing and making nice but I really wanted to go do something. Muhk had plans, Trith had crafting to do but Raven on the other hand was eager to make a run at the Bugbears. With just the two of us I would be a quick trip indeed...arrive at the island, die and turn up back at ones chosen stone. Not much of a trip I my book...With the idea of Bugbears not panning out to much more than our demise it was decided to head for the mountains and have a quick stop at the Dwarven Stronghold. What are a few Yetis, Ogres and Giants between new friends?
 It went well and with little trouble we dispatched our intended target and were soon on our way back to Vehl. After our arrival we decided to stalk a few Giants up Wolfwoods way and soon we were aboard ship for that very destination. Raven wanted to collect pelts for Trith and as we were in that general area we gathered a few lion and panther for his crafting needs. Between battling Giants and collecting pelts we did a spot of fishing, she is quite good with a bow and with some practice I think will find fishing quite relaxing as I do. While resting up we had a chance to talk some and I found she has had quite a rough life but has little intention of actively seeking retribution...unless the chance just so happens to present its self. I find her to be quite interesting in both nature and actions; she carries scars as I do, both externally and internally. I think she could be quite a handful and possibly a deadly adversary if one was to find themselves on her bad side, looking over ones shoulder would do little as they were likely to be stabbed in the chest as they did so. I find I enjoy traveling with Raven more than most ladies I have met. I find most to be weighed down by some sort of issue, true she does have issues but they do not find their way into every facet of our travels...for which I am most thankful.
 We parted company soon after as we each had things to attend to in separate directions...
 
 I had spent a few days fishing and collecting pelts just for something to do. I was running low on fishing arrows and needed to replenish my supply in Mariners Hold. As I passed through Fort Homestead I could see a figure moving rapidly in my direction followed closely by a pride of lions. As the figure closed I could see not only was it Raven but that she had been badly mauled and was losing ground to the pursuing lions, she needed help and needed it now. I drew my weapon and dispatched the lions with all do haste. With the immediate threat of death removed she was able to rest and tend to her wounds. Our chance encounter had been fortunate for her as well as me; I was able to save her from the lions and her me from boredom that will almost always get me into trouble. She was still looking to get the head of the Bugbear and after a few birds we had a party ready to lend a hand in doing just that. We met them in Mariners Hold and I was surprised that everyone contacted showed up. It was quite a formidable force to be sure and the Bugbears had little chance to turn this group back. There was much talking, a bit of bickering, some posturing and a few whispers but eventually we moved out. I was almost immediately contacted for an emergency call for reinforcements and I had to bow out to attend to this message...
 
 /////I crashed for several hours and did not make the run/////
 
 I again returned to my fishing, I needed something to keep me out of trouble...Again low on arrows I made for Mariners and who should I run into but Raven...no pursuing Lions this time. I had collected several dozen pelts that I was able to transfer to her ox for later delivery to Triht. We stopped to do a bit of fishing in Stone; I had not been there before and was quite impressed with the amount of fish in the cold waters held. we fished a bit and talked of all sorts of things while plinking away with our bows...she's getting to be an excellent fisherman...err...woman....person...whatever, she plugs em pretty good. Needing a bit more action than the fish could provide we set out for Hemp figuring perhaps we could get a few warm bodies for some fun. Along the way we got word of a group setting out for Haven and it's infamous mine. Well what could be better then a run at the dogfaces...except maybe two runs at them. We were to meet the group in Haven so we made our way through the forest to arrive in Haven well before the rest of the group and this is how I landed in jail...
 
 Just minding my own business and having a polite conversation with myself as Raven had run off to who knows where. She reappeared suddenly and out of nowhere to startle me a bit and produced a rather stout beverage she had obtained form someplace...sometimes its better not to know. I took a deep swallow and it was like I had swallowed a fire, I was surprised to find no smoke came out when I talked...the few words I was able to get out...
 
 I have little recollection of the following series of events but I do remember snippets. I remember studying the grass rather closely, then being pulled along by me ear and finally then my cellmate Ben...strange fellow but what type of people does one expect to find incarcerated? It seems while I had been in the clink the rest of the group arrived to find me under arrest and not to keen on throwing my bail. Luckily Iellwen was there and was able to get me released into her care...good old Ell always saving me from myself. So with me paroled it was back to the business of the mine. I'm not so sure what happened but the there was some friction between Raven and another woman who left soon after Raven threw up at her feet and most of the group wandered off soon after as well. Ell did stick around, now apparently she's my parole officer... The new group was quite large and full of the most amazing personalities; Bruenor, Gloom, Sil, Elgon, Alatriel, Ell and Raven. What an adventure that was. Brue and Gloom are truly too odd for words and if you know them you know what I mean, if you don't know them...you will. I had a pretty good hangover to begin with and several good hits to the head helped little to make it easy to recall the entire action. I know I was in trouble several times and more than once had my butt saved by Sil, Ell and Elgon's healing skills. Our foray into the mines was a success, the head was returned and soon most had gone their separate ways...
 
 The one thing I remember most were the two opposing forces of Ell and Raven...
 
 Ell being the polite and soft-spoken lady she is; always on me about my language, or the inappropriate remarks I'm prone to making. I had no idea she could freeze fire with just a look...albeit a stern one. Reminds me a bit of my mother; a poke, a prod, a look or even simply saying my name was enough to put me back in line. It seems Ell has channeled my mom...swell.
 
 Raven on the other hand...Gets me drunk, thrown in jail, talks like a sailor, is generally the anti-Ell and good gods is she one hellova goodtime...
 
 The head returned and still looking for more Ell, Raven and I decided on a bit of Forest Giant hunting. Gloom soon joined and we were off to the forests around Prantz. We met a small band coming out of the wood and we stopped to talk. There was a Kobald with what I can best describe as a crush on Ell and it soon became Ell AND Raven... (I will say at least it had good taste)... It was rather funny to watch him working on the two. It was a good trip...Ell again saved my butt; I was stuck between three Giants and just getting pasted. I had resigned myself to the fact I was going to die but I would go down swinging...and then Ell appeared! Bing, bam, boom and I was back in the fight. She is without a doubt worth twice her weight in gold, which is probably close to what I owe her in gold for saving me so often and without complaint. This was also a successful raid and we were out in the clear air of the forest once again, where I said my farewells and wished them luck as I departed...
 
 (Traveling with Raven and Ell is quite interesting to say the least...
 I wish there were two of me, one for each of them. When Ells is too goody-goody she could swap with Raven to bring it back into balance and when Ravens is too disorderly she gives it to Ell for the same...
 Running amok with these two ladies is extremely entertaining and I look forward to many more adventures with one or both whenever the opportunity presents it's self.)

45
Much better than it was...The dex check to apply is a bummer but oh well.:)

46
General Discussion / Re: A new Arrival :)
« on: July 08, 2008, 04:11:53 pm »
congratz!!!:) :) :)

47
Development Journals and Discussion / Re: Balthazar Woll
« on: July 07, 2008, 05:05:32 pm »
It's the simple things in life...my arse.
 
 Why can a man not simply enjoy an afternoon of fishing and why must the Gods intervene in the most peculiar ways? I could understand making the fish not bite, or making it rain kittens, or striking me with lightning...but why get others to do your bidding and just how planned was this whole event? Did the responsible entity plan it from beginning or just exacerbate an already declining situation, on more than one occasion I have had irate creatures "scraped" off on me by retreating groups or individuals...
 
 Fishing has on several occasions nearly been my undoing but I do enjoy it so. The last time I fished here my camp was overrun and sacked by several giants, after being savagely assaulted by an oddly irate whit stag. Other than the destruction of the camp the only loss were several nice gems at the hands of the giants, the ransacking culminated with the unexpected detonation of a giant; although excellent in its entertainment value it was a bit messy in the end...
 
 It was an absolutely stellar day for fishing; sunny with hardly a cloud in the sky, a light breeze that barely ripple the glass like surface of the lake, the water so clear the fish were easy to spot just below the surface and I thought I could see some of my lost stones sparkling in the depths. Plinking cats and pike never gets boring, the fight they put up is well worth the effort and hauling in a big cat never fails to put a smile on my face. The chance to fish such an amazing spot on such a day is worthy of a Bard's song in the least and if I could carry a tune I might just write one...
 
 Why I should be denied a bit of relaxation on such a glorious day is beyond me but I do not claim to understand the fickle nature or the changing whims of the gods, I am but a finger puppet in the great puppet show of life. After my encounter with the stag and giants I should have been a bit more attentive but I had become lost in the fishing and again was caught with my pants down so to speak...
 
 More than once I have had to combat that fat cow eating bird but never have I see it near the lake. Why it was there I could not guess, maybe it got tired of cows and fish seemed like a good idea at the time. Possibly it was tracking someone I had not see pass through the area. The why was of little consequence, it was the WHERE that was bothersome and the where was here...now. One of these days I will fish fully geared for combat but not this time, again I was armed with bow and a few dozen fishing arrows. For the briefest of moments I thought it might not see me and just go on its merry way but that was not to be and the thought had just crossed my mind when I was without a doubt spotted...
 
 I wasted no time in engaging that fat turkey and it soon looked like a pin cushion but it kept coming. Ordinarily I'm not the best bowman anyhow but walking backwards in knee-deep water only weakened my lackluster bow skills further. I needed to get my sword, if I could do that this chicken would not stand a chance, only the 'chicken' was closer to me than I was to my sword...and getting closer...
 
 I was not going to reach the weapon in time and all I could do was keep plugging away with my bow. It was no more than eight feet away when it lunged at me; I stumbled backward over a rock and just by dumb luck I released the arrow the same moment it opened it beak to get a bite. That damned arrow flew right into its open mouth and dropped him deader then hell out of the sky right on top of me. I was trapped under a few hundred pounds of feather coated meat in two feet of water. This thing just might kill me after all, not with beak and claw but by dead weight...quite literally.
 
 Trapped underwater by this big dead bird I thought to my self; 'of all the ways to go...are you kidding me?...drowned by this stupid bird, give me a break'. While laying there thinking this was how I would go I noticed the mud beneath me was pretty soft and I fight be able to free myself if I took a page from the fish I had been plinking all day. I started flopping like a fish as best I could under the weight and found the mud was rapidly being pushed from under me. Soon I was free and safely on my feet again...
 
 I can take a hint as well as the next guy and my things were soon packed. I do love fishing, it's such a nice distraction from the day to day life and death struggles....

48
Development Journals and Discussion / Re: Balthazar Woll
« on: July 03, 2008, 04:04:05 pm »
After extricating myself from the caverns I still had much work to do, I had all those opals to cut and polish...
 
 After buying a fortune in polish... (I think the shop keeper closed up for the day after I left)... it was off to the crafting house to make myself blind doing tediously detailed work. I enjoy working stones but the eye strain from such close work is murderous as is the pain in my fingers and wrists, with so many to cut and polish I feared I was in for a long night of headaches and hand cramps. Setting the heavy bags of raw stones on the table was a welcomed relief, after laying out my tools and polish I took a few minutes before I began chipping away on the first of many opals...
 
 Such a delicate job takes more concentration than actual physical work and letting the mind wander tends to waste resources; one momentary loss of concentration tends to lead to poorly cut stones or missing fingernails. In my gathering days I could let my mind wander freely as I collected for contracts and found the time just slipped past with little notice...(twenty years to be exact)... but if I wandered off mentally while cutting the end result was poor quality and wasted materials. Keeping focused on the task at hand was a chore in itself and I had to break frequently to rest my eye or shake out cramped fingers.
 Never before had I had such a large haul nor did I think I should again. Small batches can be cut and polished with ease but this monster load was going to really put a hurting on me. I hate to say I have the attention span of a Brownie...but I may be close.
 
 Soooo many hours later I dropped the final stone, cut and polished in to the bag. My hands hurt so badly I don't think I could have dug a booger from my nose without crying...next time I think of filling bags with stones I need o remember the pain in my hands....
 
 Unless they are diamonds....or emeralds....I could live with the pain.

49
General Discussion / Re: And he's Baaaaack!
« on: July 02, 2008, 03:39:12 pm »
Was wondering where Arke went....Volga has been lonely

50
General Discussion / Re: You're HOW old?!
« on: July 02, 2008, 03:15:14 pm »
Balthazar sure is spry for 59...

51
Trade and Market Hall / Re: Bard Looking for Silk
« on: July 01, 2008, 10:44:02 pm »
not sure about being an upstart...I do however have two boxes on hand.
 
 Regards,
 Balthazar Woll

52
Development Journals and Discussion / Re: Balthazar Woll
« on: July 01, 2008, 03:48:56 pm »
The magic in the standard thinking cap seems to hold its potency well over time and after several hours I came up with a plan...no... a gamble...no... not a gamble either, what I had come up with...? I'm not sure what it actually was.
 
 My exit 'strategy' had a few rough edges to say the least and it was considerably more likely to fail than to actually be successful. I guess both ways I will be free of this confinement; success and I will be fighting my way free...failure and I will be spat from the void weak and disoriented. Freedom is the goal and both will have the same result... perhaps I should add an amendment to my plan; freedom AND survival...yeah I like that better...
 The plan was not so much a clear-cut 'plan' so to speak...actually it was more of a rough guide. I had no step by step layout, no set series of events nor really a plan now that I think about it. I needed to get out that damned door and I was going to need the giants to do so; just how they were going to facilitate this was as of yet still unclear...
 
 I repacked all my gear carefully in to my pack and test fit it to make sure it was all ready to go and began to put my 'plan' into action...
 I moved from the small grotto I had been living in to the larger chamber by the door. One final check on my gear to tighten straps... (a third check on my chinstrap)...shake out a few muscles and kick a few loose stones from underfoot, I was as ready as I was going to get. The giants moved in shortly after...
 
 They emerged from the gloom and made their way cautiously to where I had been holding out. I could see only two, perhaps they had become weary of losing so many and this was just a probing attack before a larger group stormed in while I was busy with the first two. They rushed in with much noise and bluster but I soon heard them quiet down as they tried to figure out what had happened; why had I not attacked them, where had I gone...what was going on. Giants are not the brightest candle on the table and seem to have a bit of trouble reacting to unanticipated events; it takes them a bit to get refocused. I could hear them wandering around grumbling to each other and I could just picture their faces with that stupid look of confused anger. No more had appeared to reinforce the first two; possibly these two had taken it upon themselves to improve their standing in the tribe by being the ones to get rid of me. These two were going to be my 'exit plan'...
 
 It took several minutes for them to finally give up wandering around and move the search further along the cave, why they split up is beyond me...(I'm not one to look a gift horse in the mouth)... I had remained by the door and let them do what it was they were doing. The first; a big grey hulk with no nose lumbered out and headed in my direction swinging his ax casually as his head swayed back and forth. It took a surprisingly long time for this big lummox to actually notice me standing there waving at him like the village idiot...
 
 When he finally did, it was on; he came at me at a run, with that big ax up over his head and his mouth wide open... (it was a really, really big mouth)...I waited for him to close and when he was there, I was on him like hair on a Dwarf. We battled it out for a bit and I tried to keep my eye out for the other to join in. I was finally able to dispatch him when he took a huge swing and missed bending low enough for me to drive the blade into his brain through the back of his head. One down one to go and I needed this one to get me through the door...I still had little idea of just how this was going to happen.
 
 I did not have long to wait for the other to show up. He must have seen me about the same time I saw him; I was still standing on the back of the dead one, foot firmly planted on his head trying to retrieve my sword which was stuck fast in its head. I yanked enthusiastically on my sword, trying to free the weapon before the other was on me...
 
 I was still trying to get that blade free and hoping against hope that I would be faster than that giant. I had little hope of beating a giant with just my shield; they are a tad bigger than trolls. There was lest than ten feet between me and that oncoming giant when the blade slid free with one final terror fueled yank...
 
 Life is full of mysteries and I don't try to figure them out I just go with the flow, I mean why swim up stream?
 
 As I yanked the blade free a great stream of blood was slung from the end and splashed right into the giants' eyes when I brought it around to bear. Temporarily blinded but unable to stop it's forward momentum it collided with the corpse of the first. I had not noticed in my fanatical efforts to free my weapon that the ax handle of the dead giant was sticking out from beneath the body. Colliding with the handle caused the blinded and terribly enraged giant to vault over not only the body but me as well. I threw myself flat on the body as the other sailed over my head and with a tremendous crash split the door right down the center, unable to believe my luck I laid there dumbfounded. I regained my senses and made quick work of the unconscious, possibly already dead giant... (never hurts to be sure)...I pried the door open using the ax as a lever and was gone, I was free...sort of...
 
 After fourteen days I was out of my 'prison' but I still had to get through the rest of the caverns and any giants contained there in. I was feeling pretty good about this time and figured I'd have little trouble fighting my way clear to the surface. For once I was correct, my escape was hard fought but I managed to reach the forest alive. The sun; never so bright or painful nor so welcomed greeted my emergence. I lay in the grass for a long time just breathing the fresh air and feeling the warmth on my face...
 
 I had misfortune and had overcome it, now it was off to Prantz to make my fortune. I still carried over one hundred opals...

53
Development Journals and Discussion / Re: Balthazar Woll
« on: June 30, 2008, 07:39:33 pm »
As usual I find myself behind in jotting things down...
 
 Misfortune and fortune often go hand in hand and if you get through one you might just reach the other. The giants had been given a reprieve as I was too busy doing other things, to strike their encampments as usual. Finished with my prior engagements I was freed to resume my campaign against the giants and to this endeavor I again threw my fullest attentions and effort.
 Successfully assaulting giants seems to be a perishable skill; the funny thing about a perishable skill is you have no idea that it has wilted until you use it.
 
 I had forgotten several important truths about giants.
 1. they are big
 2. they are not very friendly
 3. they are big
 4. they are tough
 5. they come in several types...all are big
 6. they hit hard
 
 It was not long after opening hostilities that these truths came back to me...actually they came AT me. I was lucky to say the least. Five giants rushed at me and I was not really feeling the love. I did back myself into a corner to keep them from surrounding me but I had no escape...except right through em all. Breathing heavily I set my feet, brought up my shield and waited for them to close the distance...
 
 Giving better than I was getting we battled on and on and on; I'd knock em down and they'd get right back up swinging. Swing, dodge, block, swing, jab, maybe a kick or two and I even tried to daze a few. By the end of it although pretty banged up I had five dead giants at my feet. Taking five at once was foolish albeit unintentional but what was I going to do, I had gotten their attention and had to finish what I had started. While tending my wounds I took time to get my head on straight. Everything I needed was in there somewhere; I just needed to get to the front again. This was not my first go round with giants by any means; I just had been out of the game for a while.
 
 The giants had not reformed when I again entered their camp so I was able to simply stroll through the rain to the cave. I used my meager magic's and tromped down the stone steps to the mouth. Cool and rain free the cave was welcoming right up to the point where the giants were. They wandered around grumbling and doing what giants do. I moved to the cover of a rock outcropping and using it to shield me from view I took stock of the situation. Four ax wielding giants and one that looked to be of the casting type...no visible weapon.
 
 I stepped from the cover and waved at the nearest one who immediately bellowed and headed right for me...with the other three in tow. Again I had drawn nearly all of them to me at once. This went much like the first, lots of hitting and being hit. Then the spell arrived...some type of plant growth began tangling around my legs making any attempt at knocking down my opponents impossible. Minus my biggest advantage and most useful tactic I was stuck slugging it out with blade and shield. Thankfully I had not actually been seen by the caster; he simply cast in the area of the fight and seemingly content with his contribution continued to wander in the back of the passage. I was soon able to correct his thinking on just how helpful his contribution really was, as I charged around the corner, dropped him on his arse with a suburb knockdown and planted my blade right in his big stupidly surprised face.
 This time I had come off better and just a few bandages had me felling just ducky. The rest of the cave was similar in the combat, ax wielders and another caster but I had better cover in the following chamber and had little difficulty limiting their movement and numbers. I had been barely scratched in the last fight and decided to move on without resting.
 
 I did however relieve my full bladder in one of the huts just a little something to remember me by.
 
 The lower caverns can be a bit tricky and I had never been this deep alone. I knew the layout and what I was likely to find further on, I was not however expecting to be trapped for more than a week...
 
 No sooner had I moved into the room then I nearly ran head first into a wandering, ax wielding giant and the fight was on. The sounds soon drew in more and more giants and I stopped trying to count them. Luckily I was in a tight space and only one could attack me at a time so at least I was not going to be surrounded. I have no idea how many I had felled when I felt a great heat on my back and the smell of burned wood filled my nostrils choking me a bit as I took in great breaths from all the exertion. Coughing badly as my eye burned and watered I continued the fight by swinging at blurred shapes. I do not recall moving to engage the caster but I must have because it lay dead at my feet when my eye stopped watering and my vision returned. Looking around at the carnage I found nine dead including the caster, I also notice the right shoulder of my cloak was nearly burned away and the armor underneath was scorched. My head must have been the casters target and he had just barely missed me with the fire ball or some similar spell. The door on the other hand had taken the full brunt and smoldered badly. I should have checked it then...
 
 With the giants temporarily scattered I took the opportunity to get a few opals. I was surprised by my luck in acquiring nearly twenty opals from the two deposits, taking this as a sign I should depart I gathered up my gear and headed out.
 
 The door was still smoking slightly as I went to open it and no matter how hard I pulled I found it stuck tight. Closer inspection revealed the hinges had been fused by the heat and now were totally inoperable. My attempts to first kick the door down were futile, as the door opens towards me I was doing little than pushing it against the frame and supporting stonework. My next attempt was just as useless; I tried breaking it down with the impact of a running start. I had hoped the wood might be weakened by the fire but to no avail; it was as strong as ever. I had acquired a mace from one of the deceased giants and tried that as well but it too proved little use and by the time I was done beating on the door it looked more like a sickle then the mace it had been. My final attempt consumed six of my eighteen chisels as I tried to cut the hinges from first the door itself and then the stone around it, again to no avail. By now I was getting a bit desperate; the giants would soon muster enough courage to return and I was stuck in their lair with no way out.
 
 Old habits die hard; I still carry enough provisions for several days and water was similarly not a problem as there are several pools scattered about the caverns I could utilize. The most troubling aspect was being trapped in the caverns with giants for gods know how long and the prospect of battling endless waves of giants was not something I was looking forward to. I needed a defensible I could hold for an indefinite period of time...
 
 I scouted around and found the best place to make my stand was in the smaller grotto containing the opal deposits. There was a potable pool of water, cover I could use, a small fissure behind two large stone formations I could use to limit the numbers of attackers who could come at me and the opal deposits. I had a place to make my stand, water, food and something to do between giant assaults... (mine opals). I had little idea of just how long I would be there but for the meantime I was looking pretty good for the circumstances...Four days later I was still trapped and now beginning to run low on food. I had not taken into consideration the energy expended fighting waves of giants' every few hours and just how much food would be consumed just to keep me going. I had opals aplenty but no matter how nice they look ya still can't eat em.
 
 As my food supplies continued to dwindle at an alarming pace I was forced to consider alternate sources. I do enjoy Troll headcheese and have tried many different types of flora and fauna, many not typically considered as a food source but the developing situation was going to be entirely different than any I had faced in a long, long time. On the sixth day I was down to one dried ration, water was plentiful and easily obtainable but the food had gone as far as it would. I needed a new source and soon...
 
 The immediate need to replenish my food stock weighed heavily on me and I could see starvation as a real possibility if I did not secure one soon. The solution was far simpler than I had realized; the giants. Their size and numbers were not only going to possibly be my downfall but perhaps my saving grace as well. I could use them as food...unappetizing as this seemed it was not only a viable source but a plentiful one as well. The amount of meat on a single leg or arm was more then enough, even after cooking. I would not have to clean the entire carcass...thank the gods.
 
 Their bones and minimal clothing were enough to keep a small fire going in the back of the cave. I had water, fuel for the fire, food and I could continue to mine opals. (of which I had several bags of). The only thing I did not have was a way out, nor did I see having one in the foreseeable future.
 By day twelve I was getting a bit stir-crazy, the constant cycle of attacking giants and mining was beginning to really wear me out. I had by now more than one hundred opals and was very ready to be anywhere but here. I needed some way to get that damned door open; I dug deep in my pack and put on my thinking cap... (good thing I still had it)

54
Development Journals and Discussion / Re: Balthazar Woll
« on: June 10, 2008, 04:59:48 pm »
It seems I have to bow to the inevitable...
 
 I have overcome most of the obstacles in the path to a reliable (not to mention useful) throw able weapon. Increasing the yield of the various types available I had hoped would make these last-ditch weapons more of a frontline / first strike weapon. After weeks of trial and error the feasibility and reliability of the device seem not to overlap, increasing the yield also increases the instability. Increasing the stability decreases the yield to pre-improvement level negating the entire benefit of the project. Weeks of exhaustive testing have been unable to resolve this loop rendering the entire project moot; why increase yield when the entire thing may blow up in your pack...or your face and why make it stable enough not to ignite prematurely if it will be no more powerful than pre-modification? The time and risks involved are too great to make it a worth while endeavor...
 
 I have tested every facet of each possible weapon and find the instability / yield problem to be insurmountable... (at this time). As stated previously the yield of several devices simultaneously ignited will be exponentially increased in direct proportion to the number involved. I had been apprehensive about testing this to a greater degree as the exact ratio of devices to yield is not exact as each device is a bit different in potency... (this also has been impossible to remedy). I continued on this course of testing as I felt it was imperative to understand the effects of several devices at once. The accidental detonation of numerous devises as maybe stored in a pack I felt needed to be calculated, understood and if possible verified. The testing was both terrifying and awe-inspiring to behold...
 Using concentric circles that expanded five meters with each ring to a total of fifty meters I tested each type of device;
 
 *Type 1 - 1b (Fire/Choking Powder, Expanded Fire/Choking Powder, Acid Ignited Fire/Choking Powder)
 
 *Type 2 - 2b (Fire/Caltrop, Expanded Fire/Caltrop, Acid Ignited Fire/Caltrop)
 
 Four devices contained in a lion bag were placed on a post driven in the centermost ring and detonated by dropping the bag the twelve inches to the ground. Twelve inches has shown to be a sufficient enough drop to initiate self-ignition ... (it also is the approximate height one might drop their pack to the ground when removing it from their person).
 
 *Type 1- 1b testing was conducted using combat dummies; the effects of the powder were not the main focus of the test, effects of the fire components were the main concern. Just how devastating would an accidental activation of multiple devices be?
 
 
  • The dummies in the first twenty meters were totally incinerated leaving nothing but ash.
  • At twenty-five to thirty five meters the dummies suffered serious to severe burn damage (nearly all of the clothing was burned away).
  • Forty to fifty meters suffered minor burns...
Testing indicates that an accidental detonation of four devices would be unequivocally fatal to the bearer of the bag and any within twenty-five meters would be burned to death as well. Those unlucky enough to be with in thirty-five meters would suffer almost certainly fatal burns as well. Those at greater than forty meters would survive suffering only minor burns but bearing witness to a most horrific death of those closer to the epicenter...
 
 (testing was conducted three times and all results were comparatively similar.)
 
 *Type 2 - 2b testing was a bit tougher as its main focus was the lethality of the Caltrops as they were projected at high speed. Combat dummies were originally to be used once again but calculating what was lethal to hunk of wood in clothing seemed a bit foolish. I decided on live test subjects. Chickens have been bearing the burden of my testing to this point... (I have been eating a lot of chicken), but the chickens seemed a bit small and rather unsuited for testing on the scope I was about to undertake...(besides, you can kill chickens if you scare them badly enough). I needed something with a bit more mass...I purchased several oxen and tethered them at the same locations occupied by the dummies. The test evidence is truly frightening...
 
 
  • All Type 2 - 2b devices are lethal at WELL OVER fifty meters. Every ox was killed out to the fifty meter ring...as well as several tethered for the next test over eighty meters away.
  • The horrific damage inflicted by the Caltrops as they move through the target is unequaled; Oxen closer than thirty meters were nothing more than strips of flesh.
  • At the forty-five meter range the Oxen were in shreds but discernable as Oxen.
  • Fifty to eighty meters (presumably beyond) the Oxen were mostly intact but most suffered fatal wounded as well.
I was lucky enough to avid being struck by any Caltrops but not so in avoiding Oxen wreckage; I was covered head to foot in blood and bits of meat...
 
 Testing indicates that the accidental or intentional activation with in a crowd, such as an adventuring party or gathering place (Hemp fountain) would produce massive casualties and any not immediately killed would suffer devastating, probably fatal wounds. The usefulness of such a weapon cannot be over looked; the likelihood of accident and certain death to the user negates any possible benefit of such weapons. While the devastating effects and the usefulness of employing such a weapon against an enemy cannot be denied, getting it safely from point A to point B is in serious doubt...
 
 It is with much disappoint that I must given the facts of testing that these weapons have no practical purpose, the likelihood of accidental ignition/detonation is too great and no likely remedy is foreseeable. After so much time and energy devoted to this project I had hoped to solve the issues and come away with a satisfactorily deployable weapon.
 
 -As of now this project has been deemed unadvisable for production-

55
Trade and Market Hall / Re: Kayana Memorial Relief Foundation Raffle
« on: June 09, 2008, 09:46:08 pm »
38, 46 and 59 For Balthazar Woll and since he can't write very well and is franticly pointing over my shoulder at these three numbers....
 64, 74 and 94 for Volga, guess he has a 'thing' for fours....
 
 
 
 
 
 Regards,
 Balthazar Woll
 
 // Balthazar will not be there...Volga will be played.
 
 Bal would like:
 
 Jorel's Sheath
 Dorand's Brace
 Healing Embrace
 Adamantium Heater Shield
 Breastplate +2 + Noisemaker

56
The Silver Buckle / Re: Friends - small and large - of Grannoch
« on: June 08, 2008, 06:37:22 am »
* a big dirty handprint covers most of the sheet *
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 // This is Volga's response/signature.

57
Development Journals and Discussion / Re: Volga scribbles
« on: June 05, 2008, 04:37:25 pm »
Volga fight gud...Volga fight wif manys people...Volga ebben saves dem from dieings too...Figth wif big giants...fight wif goat-men...fight wif trulls...fight fiw spidrs and snakes...Volga fight lottsa stuff.
 Volga tries get udder peoples to share fuud too...nobuddy want volgas fuud...why dey not like skunk or goblin legs...? Wat wrong wif dem...Volga eat dem lots...Volga big and strong...eats wat Volga offurs and yous get big and strong toos...lottsa peoples trun green when Volga eat...Volga not know why dey not take offer of fuud...Volga gotts lottsa fuud in bag...skunk...fish...goblin leg...mebbe tue...most of a badgers and dis...Volga not sure wat dis is...mebbe eat laters and findouts....

58
Development Journals and Discussion / Re: Volga scribbles
« on: June 05, 2008, 03:30:31 pm »
Volga heres dat many peoples gots no fuud...Volga member beings hugry...Volga fish lots to gives dem so dey haves fuud...Volga getts lottsa fish fer dem but not llowed in town to gives dem...Volga wait longtimes to gives dem to peoples dat can go ins...Volga give fish to man wif wite hair...he take dem for Volga...Volga help but dey not want it from Volga...mebbe Volga not helps dem annymores...dey helps dem selves...if not dey dies...Volga not know dem annyhows... Dey not want help dey not get nos helps from Volga...Volga not care...
 
 Volga not llowed in town...Volga not llowed to help...Volga not llowed to give fish...Volga only llowed to fights when dey want Volga to fights...mebbe Volga not fights fer dem...mebbe Volga get udders not llowed and we fights dems dat is llowed...mebbe dem not allowed keep dems dat is out...sees how dey likes it...mebbe make dem pay to be in town...or we trow dems out...
 
 Volga talks wif udders...mebbe dey tink sameting as Volga...

59
Development Journals and Discussion / Re: Volga scribbles
« on: June 05, 2008, 03:13:40 pm »
Volga meet udder giantkins...he got big name...Volga call him Ark...Volga not gud wif names..Ark easy too members...
 Ark have majiks...Volga like da majicks Ark haves...Volga wants majiks toos...mebbes Volga too dumbs to have majik...Volga sill haves ax...dat gud nuff fer Volga...Ark majik make Volga srong...Volga ax make tings ded...Ark say win win situation...Volga not know wat dat mean but Volga tink it gud toos....

60
Development Journals and Discussion / Re: Volga scribbles
« on: June 05, 2008, 03:04:22 pm »
Volga now wurk wif poisun...dat hard too doos...Volga not dat gud yet but makes lottsa tries to get dem right...Volga gott big hans and da wurk is smalls...make meny bad wuns and haves to start over lots...not get many poisuns too keeps...Volga get boxes of spidr bits too wurk...spend lottsa time making not much but Volga keep working...mebbe gets better soon...

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