Thursday, September 20, 2018

“She’s All the Rage” - A Tale of Heroes - Scene 61: Thissraelle

With a shriek and a loud thud, Thissraelle landed her feet hard on the top of the wagon. The two men who had been fighting with Antonerri stood and looked up at her in surprise, but smirked when they saw her. Her frail high-elf body shook with tension and rage. Her head and hands burst into vivid blue light. Her white cloak, shirt, and hair flew in a magical wind swirling around her.

She pointed at one and spoke with a harsh and cutting tone, “You...,”

She floated slowly down from the wagon top to hover just above the blades of grass, which now lashed back and forth as she approached, “...Will leave...,”

She drifted toward the man who had last been fighting Antonerri, who had been in the wagon tossing the children. “...These children...,”

He reached down to his belt and pulled out a dagger and rushed toward her. She stretched out her arm toward him and he froze, then rose up in the air, his arms and legs swinging wildly as he tried to grasp or kick at anything that would feel like solid ground. “Help! Help! Set me down! Set me down!” He screamed.

His companion ran at her from the other side, crouching low, with an angry scowl. In a few steps, she turned her head and raised her other arm to him, stopping him full in his tracks. As his grimace turned to fear, she swung her arm aside, like she were throwing away garbage. His body followed her motion, tossed through the air, slamming into the back of the wagon hard enough to lurch the wagon forward. The children inside shrieked. He struggled to gain control, to stand up. Another wave of her hand and she slammed him back into the wagon. Finally, he fell still and slumped to the ground.

She turned to back to the remaining slaver and drew him to her until his terrified face looked into hers. She hovered there with him struggling mere inches from her open hand. “You... will leave... the children... be!” 

She surged her mind and pushed him away in disgust. He flew across the meadow like a leaf in the wind, crashing across the grass and falling down a hillslope.

She breathed in deep and fell to the ground, gasping. Her mind cleared, her body shaking, her will was drained. She looked at her hands. There was no blue fire. She sat up and ran her fingers back through her hair, pulling it away from her face. The rage was gone.

She turned her head up and looked. There was the wagon, with the defeated slaver lying beneath it. Her eyes raised further, and saw the face of a child staring at her from the inside, with a strange mix of hope and fear.

“Oh, child!” She stood and rushed over, reaching up and taking the child in a tight embrace. Over her shoulder, she could see two others cowering in the depths of the wagon, and she gestured to them as well. “Come! You’re safe, now! You’re safe!”

They scrambled over to her and she held them tight, stroking their hair. She heard the children sobbing mixed with the distant clashing of metal on metal.


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Question for the comment section below: What do you think is happening to Granthurg right now? What is happening to Karendle and DeFrantis?

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This continues the story of the heroes in Wynne, in Twynne Rivers, in the world of The Hero's Tale, Family Friendly RPGs. Here's more info on The Hero's Tale, and family friendly RPGing.


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Tuesday, September 18, 2018

Monthly Monster - Dimensional Cat

We're starting a new feature her in the Hero's Tale Blog - the Monthly Monster! Every so often, we'll publish the stats of a new creature to use to scare, vex, harass, attack, or otherwise annoy your players! These will, of course, be shown in details native to The Hero's Tale, but can easily be adapted to any other game system. If you think of a monster you want to share, post it in the comments, or email us at theherostaletht (at) gmail.com



Name:  Dimensional Cat
Description: The Dimensional cat appears as a typical, small, gray tabby house cat. As kittens, in fact, they are indistinguishable from their normal, non-magical counterparts. As they mature, however, their tails get a bit longer, and a bit furrier toward the tip, and a knot of bone grows at the top of the head. This is just a small bump and is often hidden by the animal’s fur. The bump becomes the locus of the cat’s dimensional powers.

They are very rare, and there are few who even know they exist. Those who know of them believe that a few normal housecats who were pets of a dimensional mage may have gotten infused with powers, and then bred among themselves. They are often found as pets of unaware humans/humanoids, or by dimensional wizards who know full well what they are.

They are also sometimes found in cities or forests as feral breeding groups of as many as a dozen individuals.

Good, Bad, etc. : Freewill. Most who know of them believe them to be evil. In fact, if a dimensional cat is content living with a particular person, they will likely not do much to change their comfortable status quo. However, some believe that they actively manipulate those they live with or near. Most dimensional cats will predominantly act in their own self-interest.

Intelligence: Slightly higher than animal level. Not quite rising to communicative sentience.
Hearts: 1
Difficulty: Challenging

Attributes:
Str:   -2    Dex:   +2    Frt:    +1   Awr:   +1   Soc:   0 

Attacks\Combat Skills: They can attack with their claws and bite, and these successful attacks will be quite vicious and painful, but they will only cause pain, not loss of hearts. If they fight, they will prefer to use dimensional powers.

Armor/Protections: None

Powers (including WP): Basic Dimensional powers between +1 and +4. Those with a +3 or +4 may well even specialize. If they attack, it will most likely be reality shaping rather than their physical claws. An individual will have anywhere from 3-5 DimDWP. Cats in feral groups or living as pairs in a home are able to draw on each other’s will.

Other possible skills: They move silently, and their size makes it easy for them to conceal themselves.

Special Rules:  If they are socialized to live with humanoids, they will not be afraid, but will sometimes like to be petted. They may be particularly drawn to mages or magic items, particularly with a dimensional power base. Some will be playful and easily distracted by shiny objects, which they will collect in their residence, but not hoard in a stash. Feral dimensional cats will often be fearful and will hide or portal away from people who stumble on them.

Possibility of treasure: The trinkets they gather may at some times be valuable, but the “treasure” they have will typically be whatever is in the home where they live. If a dimensional cat is the pet of a wealthy merchant, there will likely be gold in the home. Feral cats will not likely have significant treasure. They may have acquired an oculus in their stash.




Monday, September 17, 2018

“...With the Greatest of Ease” - A Tale of Heroes - Scene 60: Thissraelle

Once they had gotten a good distance past the road that turned off to the north, toward the buildings, Granthurg stepped off the road into the meadow. She followed. They walked, casually, north, but slightly away from the old inn compound. They were trying not to draw attention to themselves.

Thissraelle looked up at Granthurg. I am very lucky to have found a friend like this out in this world. Still, I hardly know him. She looked back down at the meadow at her feet. With all the craziness that I’ve seen since I left the tower just a few days ago, I am amazed to be still alive.

My father tried to trap me, there, but he also taught me well. The powers of light and the dimensions have served me well.

They walked down the backslope of a low hill, and began to turn their path back toward the buildings, toward the hedgerows on the knoll. Granthurg was taller, of course, and was looking back over the hill crest.

But even with that, I feel much safer when I’m near him. Not just safe from danger, either. She looked ahead across the field. I’m not sure if he’ll want to go with me all the way to Emberfire, though.

Granthurg interrupted her reverie with a harsh whisper. “The man with the bundle of sticks is following us.”

“What?” She started up the slope to get a look.

Granthurg stepped before her and crouched. He gestured to her to stay down as well. “He turned down the road to the inn, then stepped off into the meadows. I can’t see him, now.”

“Let’s hurry,” he said, and begun a low squat run behind the hills to the hedges. Once there, they crawled up to the crest to look between the branches of the bushes. They were actually fairly close to the buildings, maybe only a few dozen yards. The buildings themselves were old and falling apart. There were no windows, just spaces with wooden planks covering the way. There were many horses, carts, wagons, and carriages waiting outside the cluster. A few had people near them, waiting for someone to bring out either purchases or money from within. From the compound a rough rutted wagon trail led to the south, back to the main road.

Thissraelle spoke softly, “That’s a lot of wagons. How do that many people fit in that small building?”

Granthurg grunted a muffled noise. She saw him scanning the brush and gentle hills of the meadow, looking for the man. He spoke, half to himself, “He was wearing a gray tunic and carrying a big bundle of sticks.”

“Who is he after?” Thissraelle thought, apparently out loud.

“Maybe he thinks I have that thing they’re looking for.” Granthurg said, “Maybe they’re the ones that are after you.”

She looked up at him, suddenly feeling not so safe. He shrugged.

A sudden loud boom sounded from within the main hall. The walls of the building muffled it a bit, but it was still very strong, and they strained to look to see what had happened. They could make out shouts and shrieks from within the building.

“What was - “ She started to speak, but stopped when people began pouring out of the few exits in the inn. She could hear their shouts more clearly, but there were too many of them to make out any actual words.

They ran to their horses and wagons, and began to mount up and turn away down the path. Some were dragging slaves in ropes or shackles, and they were hindered and slowed by their burdens. These were loaded up into the wagons. Others began fighting in the yard surrounding the buildings.

“Look!” Granthurg pointed. One man was running toward a well-made wagon, a short distance from the others. Under each arm was a young child, and he pushed another child stumbling ahead of him. “Children!”

Children? Her mind’s eye flashed with images of the poverty stricken street kids of Twynne Rivers. Children? More memories of her own childhood in the guild hall. Children? An ugliness welled up inside her, an anger deeper than a simple argument with her parents. She felt her body tense and her breathing quicken. The world around her started to slow.

The man reached the back of the wagon and began handing the kids up to someone waiting there. The children kicked and shouted as they were roughly lifted and dragged into the wagon. As he finished, another figure in rumpled clothing rushed up behind him and tackled him to the ground.

Granthurg shouted, “ANTONERRI!” He scrambled to his feet and crashed through the hedgerow. He unslung his hammer as he started running.

Thissraelle, her eyes huge and raging, lept up into the air and sailed effortlessly over Granturg and the meadow toward the wagon. She didn’t even stop to realize she was flying.



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Question for the comment section below: Which of the 5 main characters is the most likeable? The most irritating? The most confusing? The most... (you make one up)?

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This continues the story of the heroes in Wynne, in Twynne Rivers, in the world of The Hero's Tale, Family Friendly RPGs. Here's more info on The Hero's Tale, and family friendly RPGing.


Previous Scene, Next Scene
Start the whole story from the beginningStart from where this current story arc begins.