Wolves and Whoopsies

South of Heldorn, Cormar, 12rd June 1083

Map of Cormar (click for bigger)

For nearly a year, Jaddoc Frayne, Inglan Vorn, Eadric and Valki had been part of the company led by Rurik Bloodwind. Serving the commands of his liege lord, Talatar Shieldchanger, Bloodwind had trained and led his company in a variety of endeavors in the northern part of Cormar.

Generally, each citizen's traditional year in the army is an uneventful stint marching around, drilling, catching lost cows, settling land disputes, and helping out with the clearing up when settlements succumb to the ever-rising waters. So far, this had pretty much been what had happened, and the four friends had become fairly fit, as well as learning some useful weapons skills. Their term was nearly up, but for the last month or so Rurik planned to travel into the south of the island, to check out rumours of an unusually large group of Meryan bandits operating out of the Isgrim Forest.

Rurik Bloodwind

The company was not without its' tensions. The primary causes of these were the four half-Khyle soldiers themselves. While many of the company were quite comfortable with them, content to judge them by their abilities and actions, some were prey to old superstitions and petty jealousies, and did their best to make life uncomfortable for the pair whenever possible. The most noticably hostile were Cormac, Nikolos, Ralf, Goodwine, Tirfora Bearbane, Athala and Ippacir. Rurik and his second-in-command Ingolf, however, were firm but fair, and several even-handed punishments had discouraged open hostility within the company.

And so, on a nice bright morning in early June, Rurik Bloodwind and his company broke camp and set off for the Isgrim forest, a hundred-mile march he expected to complete in ten days or so. For two uneventful days, the unit marched along, camping in pleasant woods and meadows amongst the heaviliy-farmed northern villages.

30 miles south of Heldorn, Cormar, June 17th, 1083

Earlier in the day, the company had emerged from the more settled lands to the north and entered the more sparsely populated territory west of the Tircel Pass. Rurik took a little more care selecting his campsite this evening, and bivouacked on a lumpy knoll with a good view all around.

As midnight approached, the guard changed, and Jaddoc, Eadric and Valki found themselves on the same watch. Seated together, watching the moonlit meadow below the knoll, they talked quietly, discussing the possibility that this expedition might bring some serious fighting compared to their military service to date.


Jaddoc was the first to notice the sounds, and when she murmured, "I hear something," the others paid immediate attention; her ears were gaining a reputation among the company for keenness. All three concentrated. "Four-legged beast," Jaddoc added, "several, around the size of a big dog; or...." and at that moment the first wolf trotted out of the darkness towards the company.

Wolves generally avoided humans, at least unless they were wounded, weak or stupid. The idea of a wolf approaching a warband of armed humans in what was increasingly looking to be a hostile manner was so startling that three more had appeared before Jaddoc's stentorian bellow of "Wolves! Form up!" split the night. As the first bunch closed the gap, the camp erupted, men rolling out of bed and heading to the perimeter to confront the attack.

Inglan Vorn was one of them and, grabbing his spear from a stack as he came, he headed for his friends, shaking the sleep from his eyes. He could hear their voices as they hastily cast their battle magic; Protection for Jaddoc and Valki, who also added Bladesharp. Then the whole scene was lit up as Eadric invoked a Fireblade on his spear before bracing it for impact. As he skidded to a halt, the healer followed suit, armouring himself with intangible Protection as well as the wolves crashed in among the defenders.

The first one came flying at Eadric at head height, and he frantically jabbed with his blazing spear. The bladed tip sheared the back leg off the attacking wolf, sending it off at an angle to crash to the ground behind him, stunned. Inglan was caught unprepared finishing his spell and didn't get his guard up in time; fortunately the wolf's teeth skated off the combined defence of his physical and magical armour.


Valki and Jaddoc weren't so lucky. A wolf raced in under the latter's guard, hamstringing her and bringing her to the ground as her massive maul whistled over its head. Jaddoc, like Eadric, met one leaping in at head height but had a gaping gash torn in her face as it bit, tore and dropped to its paws. Snarling, she lashed out with her khopesh and cut it down, then backswung to clip a second.

Eadric found himself in the clear, and hastened over to assist the downed Valki who had three wolves tearing at her where she lay, her left leg a torn mess of blood and flesh. Whirling his spear, he jabbed a wolf, dropping it in its tracks before it knew he was there. One of the others got through Valki's guard but her armour stopped the bite again, though she was jarred sideways by the force of it.

Eadric stabbed again, his flaming spear vaporizing a wolf's hind leg entirely, and dropping it in a whining heap. From behind him, Kelda leaned forward and cut its throat with her dagger, grinning up at the half-Khyle. Inglan and Valki, both hard-pressed, were beginning to hope for reinforcements, but company discipline held, and the majority of the force remained on the perimiter ready for attacks from other angles; only a few skirmishers having come forward to assist the half-breeds. Valki's attempt to deflect a wolf unbalanced her and her helmet struck a rock with a dull bong; everything became a little blurred.


Jaddoc, still outnumbered three-to-one, felt teeth tear into her leg and the limb buckle, dropping her to the ground. As she did, she saw the welcome sight of Inglan leaping to her aid, his single opponent finally slain with a single blow. He dropped to her side and cast a Heal, watching in satisfaction as the torn ligaments and tendons knitted themselves back together. With a yell of anger, Jaddoc sprang back to her feet and went on full attack, disdaining defence in favour of trusting her armour.

DM Note: "Just a short combat to see how the system works" I said. Eight wolves took eleven combat rounds, and I have never seen so many fumbles in a RQ battle, ever! Both sides were slapsticking around on an epic scale.

Shaking her head to clear it, Valki returned to the fight, surprising a wolf who'd taken her for easy prey. Her massive bludgeon smashed into the beast's belly, crushing its lower body to jelly. Eadric fended the last wolf off with two short jabs, then used a Heal to get Valki back onto her feet. Still limping, the burly woman whirled her maul around her head and smashed her last worf flat.

Jaddoc had taken another bite in the arm, and her shield now hung uselessly at her side. Beside her, Inglan had made up for his earlier struggles and skewered one of the two, leaving the last one limping on three legs. A moment later he'd speared that too, and the fight was over.

Session Date: 1st September 2017