The One Ring: The Nameless Fellowship

Return to Stonyford
Session 4

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14 Winterfilth (5 October) 2946

As dusk falls and more rain starts to fall, the Company make camp in the shelter of a small copse of trees a few hundred yards from the river. Suddenly, out of the dark, a figure staggers into the light of the fire: one of the thieves, looking weary and scared. He falls to his knees and pleads for the companions to help him.

Dafydd approaches the thief, menacing him with a spear [and gaining a Shadow point] as he asks what does the thief want. The man, who introduces himself as Roderic, says that he is fleeing Guthred, after that evil man discovered that the Sickle was missing; he blamed his men, thralls to Viglund, and he slaughtered the others as Roderic made his escape. He’s been running ever since.

While the thief is being interrogated, the others take a long look around them and spot movement in the growing darkness: several figures trying to sneak up on the camp. Willibald hides in the shadows of a nearby tree, when Gilthannas sees the sneaking figures draw closer, speeding up as they near the camp. He calls out a warning to the others, and this triggers a shout of “Take them!” from beyond the trees, as the thief’s allies charge into the camp to attack!

The Elf spots Cenric raising his bow to fire, but lets loose with a volley of his own first: before the archer has a chance to shoot, Gilthannas’ elven-arrow pierces his heart and sends the archer staggering back, falling dead to the damp grass.

Wilibald and Alberic let loose with their own arrows, both aiming at the hefty looking Guthred as he charges is, his great axe already swinging. Both arrows strike the man, but he merely shrugs them off and continues charing, straight for the Dwarf; the axe catches Veig a glancing blow, while Guthred mostly ignores the return strike from the Dwarf’s mattock.

The remaining two thieves find themselves battered back by Alberic, Popo and Wilibald, and Dafydd knocks Roderic back as that thief tries to rise and swing his axe at the Barding.

Wilibald finds himself without an opponent as the Elf shoots the thief and takes him down, the man crying out in pain before succumbing to it and falling unconscious. Free from fighting, he tries to rally his friends with a Song, but the last few days have proven quite wearisome, so his voice fails him and it comes out more like a croak.

Dafydd kicks Roderic out of the way, then spins around and jabs his spear into Guthred, piercing his chest and killing the large man. Veig steps over the body and returns the favour by whacking Roderic in the head, knocking the man unconscious. The last thief tries to fight his way out, but Gilthannas shoots him neatly with an arrow, which digs in deep, finishing off the last attacker.

The company see to their wounds– just a few cuts and bruises– and tied up the two thieves who are alive. When they awake they are questioned: Roderic and Beran are two thralls from North of the Elf Wood, where Viglund rules. Their families are slaves, and they were tasked with stealing the Sickle so that they could be freed from slavery. Now that they have failed, they are resigned to their fate. They surrender to the Company, knowing that there is no further point in fighting.

The Company break camp at dawn and are soon back at the village of Stonyford, where Thane Ava is glad to see them and relieved that the Sickle has been recovered. She holds a modest feast in their honour and the Company hand over the prisoners, for Ava to deliver justice to.

The companions spend the next nine days resting and recovering, swapping tales and learning from their small adventure, before getting ready to move on.

End of Session

XP Awarded: 3 each for successfully returned the artefact to the village.

Fellowship Phase

The Company (as yet unnamed) spend a short Fellowship Phase in the village (9 days) before the next Adventure Phase begins. Advancement and Experience Points are pooled and spent, and undertakings taken as follows:

  • Dafydd tries to relax and recover from the Shadow he gained after interrogating Roderic, but finds no peace this time.
  • Veig visits the local smithy and helps the blacksmith (a large man called Amand the Smith) to modify his armour: he gains the Cunning quality to his Dwarven Hauberk.
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Ambush Near the Carrock
Session 3

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8 – 14 Winterfilth (28th September – 5th October) 2946

The company march on through the night, pushing themselves on to put the distance between themselves and the thieves that stole the Sickle. The rain stops just before dawn, but by that point Dafydd is weary from the night’s events, and the others are starting to feel the fatigue of the long journey.

They continue on as the dawn breaks over the Misty Mountains, travelling for several days, keeping a look-out for anyone following them and doing their best to cover their tracks and avoid being too out in the open. As dusk falls, as they draw adjacent to the mighty Carrock that divides the flow of the Anduin, Popo is too busy looking at the huge rock to notice the slinking approach of several wargs: most of the company spot them just in time, with Veig shouting out a warning to Dafydd, but Alberic is wondering where they can get a good night’s sleep and is surprised as the wild wolves burst out of the dark and attack.

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Opening volleys of arrows fail to hit anything, and then the wargs are upon them. Wilibald, a small Hobbit with a sword that resembles more of a knife that dwarves use to cut up their meat, manages to stab one of the wolves as it rears to bite him, scoring the first blood for the company. The honour of the first kill goes to Veig, however, as the dwarf swings his mattock and digs it deep in the wolf’s head, killing it instantly. Two other wargs are wounded by Dafydd’s spear and Gilthannas’ sword, and not to be outdone, Wilibald stabs his opponent again, the blade finding the creature’s foul heart and ending its life. Another falls to the Bardings’ spear, and Alberic the Woodman and Veig deliver blows to the wolves that are left.

Then one of the wargs leaps over the heads of the company, right at Popo (who, with the elf, is trying and failing to land any arrows in the creatures hides)… but Dafydd dives in the way, batting the wolf back with his shield, and leaving it open for Wilibald to step up and stab the creature in its black heart.

The last wolf backs off, then falls dead as Veig steps up and lands a hefty blow to its neck.

With the ambush dealt with, the company move further down the river and find a suitable place to rest for the night. In the morning– a bright, brisk autumn day– they continue on to the The Old Ford, exchanging a few words with the Beornings on watch. Dafydd tries to pass by without paying a toll, but his words are lost on the rugged men, and silver coins are handed over in the end. They company continue on, losing a day when their scout (Dafydd) takes down the wrong trail, finding a patch of marshy land that delays them.

A day out from the village of Stonyford, they take shelter in a small stand of beech trees as it once more begins to rain.

End of Session

XP awarded: 2 each.

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The Falrock
Session 2

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8th Winterfilth (29 September) 2946

Dusk has fallen by the time the Fellowship reaches the Falrock. Hiding amongst the heather and long grass they spy the thieves camping in the ruins on the island that stands in the Rushdown waters, 10 or so miles downstream from Eagle Falls. There are four in all, three tired and desperate looking men, and an archer that is looking North, watchful.

As dusk lengthens, the Took brothers head upstream and find some driftwood, then cross the river by half-swimming, half-floating, to the other bank, tiring Popo out a bit by the time they reach it. They sneak closer to the ruins, taking advantage of their small, elusive size and the tall grass. From the South bank, Gilthannas, with his Keen-Eyes, keeps watch on them; to the rest of the Fellowship, the brothers are invisible. Up close, the three desperate men bear the marks of manacles, while the archer carries the Sickle on his belt. They head back up the river and cross back over, stealthily making their way back to the others, both wet and tired.

The Fellowship decides to wait until full dark, while the thieves camp, then send in the Hobbits to sneak up and steal the sickle. To cover them, those with bows will keep watch, ready for a signal to fire if the need arises. As they wait, as the sun begins to set behind the Misty Mountains, another figure arrives from the North: a tall, thick-set man carrying a great axe. He calls out to the thieves, addressing the archer by the name of Cenric and asking if his has the prize. Cenric holds aloft the sickle.

Then it begins to rain. Soon, the rain is pouring down, rippling the waters as they flow around the island and rocks sticking out. The thieves huddle around the camp fire, using a cloak and a few sticks to make a crude shelter to keep the worse of the rain off. They cook a couple of rabbits, while the newcomer and Cenric quietly talk.

As soon as it is fully dark and all but the two talkers are asleep, Dafydd heads upstream and swims across to the other bank, wet and chilled as he slips out of the water and carefully approaches the camp. He almost comes unstuck when he slips closer to the ruins, but the resulting embarrassment that would occur if he buggered up the plan gives him a surge of hope, and he manages to keep his footing and draws close enough to hear the two thieves talking. The newcomer is called Guthred, and in the morning he and the three other men will head back to East Upper Vales, to hand the sickle over to Viglund. Cenric will head off on his own, his part done. Guthred orders Cenric to stand guard, and rolls over to sleep, sheltering from the rain by huddling up against the rubble. Cenric sits with his back to the wall, watching the guttering campfire.

Dafydd signals to the others, and with his Keen-eyes Gilthannas spots him and gives a nod to the Tooks. The brothers once again head upstream, then slip into the cold water and let teh flow take them to the middle of the island; they are cold when they reach the island and haul themselves out of the water, unseen by Cenric. Meanwhile, Alberic, Veig and the elf stand watch on the South bank, bows and mattocks ready in case the burglary fails.

To distract the half-alert archer, Wilibald sneaks up to the wall and dislodges a brick, ducking out of sight as Cenric gets up and comes over to take a look: he sees nothing, but while distracted, Popo crawls along the outer wall and makes his way over to where Guthred sleeps; with extraordinary stealth and nimble-fingers, the Took brother steals away the sickle without disturbing the sleeping thief, and manages to slip back into the rain and darkness without being seen as Cenric shrugs and returns to his wet vigil.

The brothers slip back into the water and swim tiredly back to shore and rejoin the others. Together, the five wet adventurers sneak upstream and send Gilthannas across the river to fetch Dafydd back, both getting cold and wet; the elf is almost swept downstream, but manages to swim to the shore before he goes too far.

Together again, the Fellowship shoulder their packs and quickly head back, following the Rushdown and hiking through the rainy night to put as much distance between themselves and the thieves before they notice that the sickle is missing.

End of Session

XP awarded: 2 each.
Gained: the Sickle of the Full Moon

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The Seven Trials
Session 1

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30 Halimath, 2946

Having arrived at the village of Stonyford, the six new travelling companions find themselves taking part in the trials of the festival, sponsored by various families.

The first of the Seven Trials, the Stage of the Nobles, takes place on the centre stage setup in the middle of the village. Popo Took, fresh from the Shire, takes the stage and faces off against a series of lesser competitors until he finds himself in a battle of oratory against Gelvira, a potter from a nearby settlement. They end up at a stalemate, the audience unable to decide who was the most eloquent and over-the-top, so both are declared winners.

In the afternoon, after merrymaking that leaves Dafydd slightly the worse for wear (and therefore easily persuaded to put his name down for tomorrow’s nights song contest), a game of Thimblerig takes place, with Alberic proving himself by besting everyone else, including Ethal the Unkind, who sulks off complaining about outsiders intruding on their festival.

The main event of the first day, according to most, takes place as night falls. The Torch Race lines up several Beornings and Woodmen, including a nervous man called Rathwulf who almost turns up too late to participate. Gilthannas, eager to test himself, joins the race. The elf starts slowly, but soon outstrip the others, and speeds past Rathwulf, showering him with mud as the elf streaks past to win the race.

The night is full of song and stories, the normally sombre folk of Stonyford letting their hair down for the festival. Dafydd tries to back out of the singing, but the family sponsoring him insist he sticks to his word and takes part.

In the morning, shortly before dawn, the competition heads to the Seeking Field, where Veig, a dwarf that draws even more attention than the elf, since so few dwarves are seen this far west, completely fails to find the rocks he needs to seek: he finds rocks aplenty, but not the ones he needs. He fails miserably, much to everyone’s amusement.

Just as amusing, is Wilibald’s poor attempt at intimidating Mean Shurack; the bull instead has the hobbit running out of the corral before the contest is even over. So the hobbit instead takes part in The Ancient Game of riddles, but guesses wrong at each and every riddle, and hangs his head in shame as he exits the stage.

The evening draws to a close as the final contest takes place: The Lay of the Moon, a contest of song and rhymes. Dafydd, reluctant but participating, takes to the stage and struggles at first, then ‘finds his feet’, only to lose his nerve and quickly bow out.

With the trials over, the assembled winners, losers and audience, begin making their way to the Marshall’s Tent, where the Sickle will be awarded. As the companions approach, a cry goes out:

“The Sickle has been stolen! Goblins have took it!”

Ethel the Unkind comes out of the tent, crying alarm. She points inside the tent, “the Marshall is unconscious”, and then points to Rathwulf, who stands over the body of a Goblin. The tardy farmhand holds a sword, the tip bloodied. Someone runs off to get the thane, leaving the six companions to deal with the situation.

Gilthannas heads straight to Rathwulf and questions him, and when he examines the goblin’s body, he notices that it is cold and little blood is present. “This goblin has been dead some time,” he says. Ethel says she saw someone leaving the tent, but didn’t get a good look. Inside, Alberic finds a stunned Torbald, who has no idea what happened, other than being hit over the head and the Sickle now gone.

Outside, as Ava the Thane of Stonyford comes over, the two Hobbits find some tracks, but of booted feet, man-made, rather than goblin footprints. When confronted, Rathwulf breaks down and confesses that it wasn’t goblins, but a gang of thieves led by a man called Cenric; they stole the Sickle, using the dead goblin (killed elsewhere) as a distraction.

Ava takes Rathwulf into custody, and when the companions declare that they will hunt down the thieves, she agrees and welcomes their help. They are given a place to sleep for the night, since tracking the thieves in the dark seems foolish; as they sleep, Gilthannas asks a few questions to get a better idea of the land, and an interrogation of Rathwulf reveals that the thieves are heading to The Falrock.

In the morning, the first day of Winterfilth, the newly formed Fellowship head off following the tracks left by the thieves. An early rain that morning makes tracking difficult, with footprints being washed away, but a trail is found and by their best estimate, the thieves are only a day ahead.

They embark on a Forced March, but half the party grow tired and they gain no ground. A couple of days takes them to The Old Ford, where they cross the river and learn that four men came the same way yesterday. They hurry on, tiring a little, and after several more days they come within sight of their destination.

XP Awards

All except Dafydd gain 2 Experience Points (1 for attendance, 1 for progress); Dafydd gains 1 XP; everyone has gained several Advancement Points.

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