Upon the arrival of the reinforcements from Sanctuary, plans as to the defense of the stronghold begin. The defenders decide that to hold the fortress their best bet is hitting the attackers as they cross the bridges. They cut up firewood and soak it in oil and pile it on both bridges. The plan is to light the firewood on whichever bridge the attackers come over and rain missile fire on them while they are stalled.
Around mid-day the attack comes and it is very organized. The first to come from the woods are 4 Goblin archers who sniff the air and approach the bridge cautiously. Upon seeing the wood piled on the bridge they stop and await orders. The next to come into view are 5 Hobgoblins and what looks to be their leader, he is heavily armored and riding the largest wolf anyone has ever seen, from snout to tail it’s at least 7 feet long and is saddled. The Hobgoblin band stops to study the wood on the bridge when Alanna and Alidana begin firing flaming arrows at the pile. They manage to light the fire but it only serves to ensure their retreat back to the fortress.
While waiting in the shed the party could feel what felt like the ground shaking every few moments. Shortly after their flight from the cover they find what was making the shaking. A large humanoid creature slowly comes from the woods. It’s close to 10 feet tall and has white, mottled skin. In it’s hands is a huge, man sized club and around it’s neck are chains being held by Stonemen. Once the fires on the bridge go out the Stonemen release the creature and it bounds straight for the gate of the fortress, roaring the whole way there.
Before it gets to the gates Alanna, Alidana, Aranel and Ellimune attempt to hit it with spells and missile fire from the towers. Both Ellimune and Aranel connect with Magic Missiles but it hardly slows the creature down. It slams into the gates with a grunt and almost tears them from their iron hinges on the first try. The defenders push back but even with the Centaur, Rocor helping it’s clear that the gate will not hold very much longer.
Meanwhile the Goblin Archers and Hobgoblin vanguard advance through the thoroughfare allowing the creature to cover their advance. Once they are in range the Goblins begin firing at the defenders in the tower with moderate success. After three tries the creature breaks down the gate to the fortress and pins Rocor under it. The battle has begun.
Defending the gate are Argus Kalgeros, Bryna Cainon, Firrian Tinvesy, Malius Manatonk, Malil Manatonk and Yarrion Ilrese. They make short work of the wounded giant like creature only to also lose Rocor in the fight. The battle is joined shortly by the Hobgoblins who fight closely packed and use their armor and size to not be flanked. The battle at the gate is bloody and lasts for a few minutes. The Hobgoblin Commander sends his riding wolf into the fray as well and it manages to pin Firrian to the ground but soon after falls when Argus stuns it with a hard bare knuckled blow to the snout.
In the end the Hobgoblin Commander and two of his men retreat having lost their Creature, Riding Wolf, 3 Guards and 3 of their 4 Goblin Archers. The Defenders lost Rocor and Aranel took an arrow to the stomach but was quickly tended to by Alidana and regained consciousness. The Stonemen only watched the battle and retreated back into the forest once they were joined by the Hobgoblins.
Two days later a contingent of guards from Sanctuary arrived and the Travelers returned to Last Haven for a short rest and the next day left to brief the Elders on everything that had transpired. The Elders decided to send Elder Findecamo Ancalime to the Fortress to learn of how the Stonemen had used the birds as messengers and planned on sending craftsmen to the fortress for repairs.
After the meeting the Elders ordered each of the Travelers to return to their homes and report back in a week for another task. Each Traveler was greeted by their families warmly and parties were held in their honor. Aranel and Argus met with Elorosse for the first time since letting him go back to Last Haven with Rucryn. Elorosse was very down but realized he was lucky to still be alive. He has come to the conclusion that Traveling is not his future and is unsure about his destiny.
|Harbingers in the Night||Rescue Mission|