The One Ring: The Nameless Fellowship

Breath of the Basilisk

Session 21

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The Company hide way up in the trees, in sight of the cave and wait. The hours slip by and the day draws to an end, the darkness gathering and rendering the forest an inky black. Then, the Goblins and their Orc leader emerge from the cave, with the two lizard-creatures tethered to chains, walked like some domesticated pet. Alberic recognises them as Sarnlug or Fagwyrm, also know as basilisks.

The Goblins are soon out of sight, fading away into the dark, muttering and moaning amongst themselves. As soon as they have disappeared, Dafydd enters the cave, lighting a torch to see by. He explores the cave, finding little of interest except for a passage that appears blocked. He wades through some water, and finds prints and drag marks by the stones; the blockage looks manmade, as the ceiling is intact, so he sets about moving some of the smaller rocks, creating a gap that he can shine his light through: beyond is some sort of cave. He calls out “Erland, are you in there?” and is answered by a weak voice, saying yes. A brief exchange of words follows, Dafydd telling Erland that he is there to rescue him, the outlaw telling him to hurry in case the Orcs come back.

Dafydd puts his back into it, and removes enough rocks to squeeze through the top. Inside is an old temple, or so it appears: an altar with some statue of a hooded figure, a sacrificial table stained with blood, and a pit at the far end. Erland himself is tied up and weak. Dafydd cuts his ropes and helps him out, but his strength fails him when it comes to putting the boulders back; so instead they scarper, heading out and back into the trees to join the others.

Everyone beats a hasty retreat back to were Holdwine is camped, and the outlaw is overjoyed to see his comrade back safely. As they settle down for the night in a hollow covered and sheltered by brambles, Erland tells them that he was captured by the Goblins and dumped inside the cave. He saw a hooded figure, who worked some magic and sealed the cave, but knows nothing else.

They decide to head back to Geirbald to seek his help, as this now seems to be much more than just Orcs stealing a piece of an axe. There is foul sorcery at work, and the Company intend to put a stop to it!

The following morning they head off to the Outlaws Camp, and there they are welcomed and thanked by Geirbald. Dafydd, Alberic Wilibald and Gilthannas do their best to persuade and inspire Geirbald to lend his aid, and after playing up the potential danger and suggesting that the reward outstrips the risk, the outlaw is convinced to help: he sends Holdwine and four others back with the Company to deal with the Orcs, the Basilisks and whatever sorcerer is aiding them. After a night’s sleep in relative safety and comfort, the enlarged Company set off back to the cave, spending a further night hidden away before venturing into The White Statues.

Sneaking closer, Dafydd spots a Forest Goblin on guard outside, hidden in the bushes. They get close enough to let loose a flurry of arrows, and the foul creature is dead before it knows its being attacked.

Wilibald and Alberic sneak up to the cave, and while the Woodman waits nearby, the Hobbit makes his way inside, and peers into the first cave, spotting the two Sarnlug, as well as another Goblin standing guard, alert and ready to release the chains of the beasts. He sneaks back to the others, and they gather in the trees and plan their attack.

Leaving the outlaws topside, ready to shoot any of the enemy that come out– or to charge in as reinforcements if called– the companions sneak back inside, and jump up to shoot the Goblin; fully intending to take it out before it can react or call for help, and therefore stop the basilisks from being let loose. The plan starts out fine, with a single arrow from the Elf silencing the Goblin. However, the plan then goes wrong as it turns out that the chain holding the beasts is long enough to reach the cave entrance; and they charge the Company!

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As the Sarnlug hurtle towards them, Dafydd charges in and whacks one with his spear, sending it into Wilibald’s path, as the Hobbit slashes across its thick hide, but fails to pierce it. An arrow from Gilthannas sticks in its tail; and Popo dives forward and rolls behind the other one, which tries and fails to bite him as he tumbles past.

The injured beast draws a deep breath, and bellows forth a cloud of poison, splattering Wilibald, Alberic and Dafydd; thankfully, all the poison does is mar their armour.

Dafydd retaliates with a fierce jab with his spear, but the blade merely skids off its armour-like hide; Alberic, gripping his long-hafted axe with both hands, drives the axe-head into the creature’s hide, but fails to penetrate it. Wilibald stabs at it again, but hits a tough spot and the ringing blow sends his King’s Blade flying from his hand!

Gilthannas seizes the beasts up, lets loose his bow-string, and the arrow speeds through the air, piercing the creature’s hide, and ending its life!

The other one bites at Popo, who now jabs his dagger into the chain and rock, preventing the beasts from moving further from where they now stand; it then breathes poison, and this time, Wilibald feels a stinging on his arm as the cloud finds a gap in his armour. He stumbles, and rolls with it, moving out of the beast’s range; Popo, Alberic and Gilthannas follow, but Dafydd finds himself stuck with the beast; and at that moment, the Goblins and their Orc leader come barrelling around the corner, weapons ready!

“We need help down here!” the companions yell, and the outlaws charge down the tunnel, as Dafydd turns to fight the basilisk and the others turn on the Goblins.

End of Session

XP Awarded: 1 each.

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