Where we left off…
Lanna pauses to catch her breath, standing over the two watchmen who gasp hopelessly from their wounds and mingle their blood on the flagstone floor of the ready room. She glances toward the far door where a wiser member of the guard just retreated to lick his wounds. A faint clatter of movement comes from the other side of the door. She can feel Ceffyl’s insistant tug reaching out from the North.
The front door to the Talynbourg Watch Garrison creaks heavily on its hinges, left ajar when Santiago charged through after a fleeing watchman just moments before. A crisp night breeze gusts in from outside, hinting of freedom.
Daethin, Eleanor and Rayne frantically root through the shelves and cupboards of the garrison’s evidence room, searching for their confiscated gear. The rest of the party stands over the unconscious obstacles to their flight, panting at the top of the stairs.
In the square outside, Santiago has just caught up with the guard who fled seeking reinforcements from the keep, which looms atop the hillside, a mere 100ft. away.
Let’s Blow this Popsicle Stand…
Lanna stoops over the two guards lying bloody on the floor before her. She lays a hand gently on each of them as she opens herself to the healing flow of the Goddess of Life. She channels a thin stream of Ehlonna’s divine radiance into the unconscious watchmen and the flow of blood begins to slow. Their breathing becomes deep and regular. They will certainly feel it when they wake up.
The door on the far side of the room closes with a thud but the indistinct clamor of aggravated men can still be heard beyond it. Lanna looks to the main entrance where a second guard has just fled.
In the evidence room at the top of the stairs, the rest of the party scrambles frantically to recover their gear. Moving between shelves, racks and cupboards, they recover their confiscated belongings as thoroughly and efficiently as possible.
While gathering up her weapons, Eleanor notices a particularly fine looking battle axe leaning in the corner. As she is testing the heft of it, Piruk’s eyes go wide. “Adamantine! Best let me hang on to that lass, I’ll make sure it’s put to good use.”
Kit pauses briefly in her own collection effort to try her newly recovered thieve’s tools on a large chest bearing the sigil of Talynbourg. With a satisfying click, the lid pops open to reveal the party’s coin purses along with several additional sacks of gold. These too get swept into the bag of holding.
In the chill night outside, Santiago dogs the heels of the fleeing watchman. He delivers several hefty blows, one of which sends him reeling and unable to move. The half-orc then follows up with a mighty strike that sends the unfortunate guard into unconscious slumber.
The monk turns back to the town square, only to see another guard headed in his direction, limping heavily and pursued by a sword-wielding Lanna. He begins to advance on the guard, who freezes, wide eyed and immediately bolts in the other direction calling frantically for aid. Realizing that their escape effort is getting louder by the moment, Santiago urges Lanna to break off pursuit and gather her things to leave.
The two return inside, passing by Rayne who is shoving the ready room’s furniture up against the door through which the guards had first appeared. The clamor coming from the far side of the door has now moved upstairs.
The party has nearly finished gathering their things when they suddenly hear three sharp blasts from a horn coming from the building’s roof. Immediately after the alarm is sounded, every dog in Talynbourg begins to bark and howl into the night.
Virago rushes to the entrance and peers out into the night. “We’d best be going. Soon!”
The last of their things collected, the group gathers just behind the threshold to the main entrance. Kit, stands in the lead with her Horn of Fog at the ready. Eleanor casts a protective Sanctuary spell over the rogue who then charges out the door, leaps off the steps and lets out an eerie, hollow blast on her magic horn. A single crossbow bolt thuds harmlessly into the dirt by Kit’s feet as a billowing cloud of vapor spreads out from the horn to fill the area immediately outside the garrison’s entrance.
The rest of the group acts quickly, charging out the door and down the steps. As soon as they burst out of the protective cover of Kit’s cloud, they come under withering fire from crossbowmen who have taken position on the Garrison roof. Ahead of them, they see two city watch charging towards them up the darkened street.
Our fleeing heroes turn the corner of the building cutting north through the alleys and back ways of the town. A second blast from Kit’s horn once again masks their flight from the rooftop snipers, but the group must pause briefly to help Wigston and Piruk keep up.
Soon, the party is fleeing in a twisting chase with the two watchmen on their tail. Eventually, one of the guards, whose appearance suggests a great love of mutton and good ale begins to falter in his pursuit. His partner, frustrated, reluctantly realizes that he faces steep odds alone against nine armed fugitives and pulls up as well.
Once our heroes have put the pursuing watchmen well behind them, they slow their pace and continue forward carefully, taking care to avoid the patrols now combing the city streets. The nighttime shadows and continued barking of the town’s dogs provide ample cover, and the party reaches the town’s north wall without further incident.
They pause in the shadow of an alley to assess the situation at the wall. They are approximately 100ft. from the north gatehouse where they can see two guards peering up the street. Eleanor reaches into the bag of holding and hands Santiago a length of knotted rope. He then runs for the wall and leaps to grab hold of the wall-walk, pulling himself up onto the narrow ledge. The guards’ gazes remain fixed on the lighted street 100 feet away.
Santiago secures the rope to the parapet and one by one, the rest of the party creeps from hiding and scales the wall, crouching low to avoid detection. When everyone has reached the wall-top, they shift the rope to the opposite side. Kit waits behind, and when the rest of the party has made the descent, she releases the rope and then leaps from the parapet, trusting her Ring of Featherfall to arrest her descent.
Tasting freedom at last, the party moves north from the wall, where they are met by a concerned-looking Ceffyl (if a unicorn can look concerned) with Crooktooth and Scar in tow. After discussing their next course of action, the group decides to travel south with Virago. They then begin the painstaking task of circling around the town, while taking care to cover their tracks in hopes of delaying the inevitable pursuit.
They continue picking their way south until the eastern mountains begin to release the glow of the coming dawn. As day approaches, our heroes take shelter in a wooded ravine, out of view of the south roadway and the surrounding farmlands. Foregoing a fire, the group collapses for a much needed rest.