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One potato, two potato ...

Tags: Brev,  Runner,  Jarel,  Thomas,  bandits

Short Summary: A band of ruffians go potato-stealing and get a little carried away. Thomas gets in the way
Date (real-life): 2010-08-26
Scene Location: Breelands: North of Bree
Date (in-game): Oct 3050
Time of Day: Night

Outside North Gate

The area around the outside of the north gate is weedy and over grown. The tree line from the Chetwood approaches from behind the Bree Hill to the east. In the distance the Old North Road can be seen to the west. A large hedge bars most of Bree from being seen to the south.

The dark sky is overcast and dreary. The nighttime autumn air is cool but pleasant around you.

Obvious exits:
 West leads to Grassy Meadow.
 Faint Path leads to North of Bree.
 Northwest leads to Northern Crossroads.
 South leads to North Gate.

================================== Bree Time ==================================
Real time: Thu Aug 26 14:17:32 2010
Bree time: Nighttime <23:52:36> on Trewsday of Autumn - October 11,1450
Moon Phase: First Quarter Moon

Breelands Weather
The nighttime autumn air is cool but pleasant around you. The dark sky is overcast and dreary.

[Nob(#16122)] Night has fallen; cool, but not yet cold - though there is a nip in the fall air that promises frost, and soon. Fields of potatoes lie under the slender moon; some are harvested, with piles of lumpy brown roots waiting to be hauled to market or cellar. Some are not, yet; waiting the farmer and his family.

A small house, several barns - these are in a hollow near one of the harvested fields. The last lamp is blown out and the windows go dark.

Something, it seems, is wandering the edge of the field. Several somethings. One of them trips over a cluster of dug-up potatoes and curses, kicking at it with an iron-soled boot. "Stinkin' tubers," whines a lean, bearded man.

Tonight it seems the night has many eyes. A small band of men had gathered beneath the shadows of the Chetwood to watch the peaceful farmstead, and now, as that last candle is snuffed, a few more detach themselves from the treeline to join their cursing fellow.

One of these is Brev. The man is clad in the tattered old brown cloak that he's been using ever since his flight from Bree, and there is a spear in his hand - not the shortened throwing one, but a long thrusting weapon. "Shut it," he hisses instantly toward the muttering. "You /want/ this to fail? Stinkin' tubers is food." He stands poised on the balls of his feet as he listens for any reaction from the farmhouse.

[Nob(#16122)] Inside the house, all is quiet. The barns are not quite so quiet - being filled with the rustle of sleepy chickens, the occasional snort of a horse or bang of hoof as a cow hits her stall.

     Among the group is Jarel, bearded and clothed in what were at one point fine clothes of black and a tattered cloak, spear in hand he looks to Brev glares a moment and shakes his head and says "Let us hurry this up.. It is getting cold.." Still squatting, his eyes begin to dart about.

"I know," grumbles the skinny runner-like man rudely. "Shut up, shut up. Lessgo." He draws a long knife from his belt, licking it thoughtfully.

Brev listens a moment longer for any sounds at all from the house; when there are none, his head dips in jerked agreement with Jarel; if he sees the glare he shows no sign of displeasure. "Might as well start with what's here," he offers, already tossing potatoes into a grimy sack. "There /could/ be riches in those barns, but on the other hand - likely their dogs'll wake. Not sure the meat idea worked."

He seems quite happy to let the knife-wielder take any risks.

[Nob(#16122)] So far at least, the meat idea has worked. For the dogs - and there are three of them - are snoring heavily, curled up in a pile of straw between the house and the nearest barn.

     Returning the nod to Brev, Jarel moves forward and says "perhaps we could let loose their beasts.. and while they are trying to wrangle them.. We sneak into the house and see whats worth taking.." Tossing potatoes into a bag, his eyes look to the house with an evil look.

"I don't see what good's in taters, anyhow," mumbles Runner, shoving the lumpy things into a burlap sack. Obviously this one's mother has not taught him to eat his vegetables... "That's an idea. Why dn't you go and get yerself strangled, Jare."

Chance or luck bring Thomas past the farm at this point. The sleepy-looknig boy has a fishing pole with several fish hung from it, and he's taking a shortcut through this farm on the way to get back to his parents' farm. He yawns, silently, knowing the path already and half asleep.

     Glancing back to Runner, Jarel says "Strangled.. Ha.. Why do you think I carry this spear and this nice pointy dagger.." Seeing the boy he says "Perhaps a ransom would be easier than stealing.." Looking to his fellow bandits he says "You are all too simple.." Slowly he beings to move, staying in the shadows, moving quietly.. Drawing closer to the young boy, though still hidden within the overgrowth.

Brev snorts and kicks a clod of earth in Jarel's direction. "This is a /potato/ farm. They'll have oxen - ever seen those move anywhere fast? Still, I'm all for a little diversion. Who gets to open the barn doors?" He straightens up, slinging the filled sack across his back and leaning on his spear as though it were of no concern to him.

He glances round, of course - noone in their right minds wouldn't be on alert when they're up to no good.

When Jarel confirms his suspicions that there's someone out there, he shrugs and hangs back from following.

Runner smirks. "The beasts'll move fast enough when I've tickled them with this," he says, twirling the soot-blackened knife. "'Nyway." He drops to a crouch, moving close to the ground towards the nearest barn with a nasty grin on his face.

A tuneless whistle comes from the boy. Danger? here? Thomas is oblvious, going his merry way. Those noises? Just the grass in the wind, the cows in the barn, the dogs in their dens. He walks on.

[Nob(#16122)] One of the dogs might not have eaten quite so much as the others - it stirs as Runner passes, dragging open one yellow eye... which sags shut again. No barking.

     Drawing ever closer to the young boy, Jarel continues to stay hidden within the shadows all while getting closer and closer, finally within but five feet from the boy he steps out of the bushes, spear in hand and evil look upon his face.. Looking the boy over he says "Tis rather late for such a youngin to be out.." Flashing a rather evil grin. "Where are you headed to.."

Runner, meanwhile, slips past the dogs, leering at the sleepy yellow-eyed one. He reaches the door and begins to fiddle quietly with the latch -- it is meant to be opened from the outside, after all -- pulling it back with the utmost care and glee.

Brev's eyes narrow at the whistling, confirmation that there is indeed someone approaching. He fingers his spear uneasily, glancing from house to field to the track along which Jarel has headed. Decisions ...

"You herd whatever Runner looses," he hisses toward the others in the little group. "I'll help Jarel." He slips carefully and quietly across the field, his feet feeling the way through the rutted furrows. His mouth is set tight.

"WHA...!" Thomas gives a yelp, nearly jumping out of his skin at the man's sudden appearance. "Who...who are you?!" he demands stubbornly, his fishing pole dropping down off his shoulder so that he now holds it across his body wtih two hands. The fish dangle from one end, ludicrously crowning the "weapon."

     Another evil grin crosses the face of Jarel, and he says "Calm down boy.. You dont want to hurt yourself now do you.." snickering a bit to himself he picks up his spear and holds it in two hands and says "Why dont you set that down.. Before someone.. You.. Gets hurt.." Taking a step forward he glances over his shoulder and then looks back to the boy with evil eyes and says "Set it down.. Or ill put you down.."

Things are going slowly on Runner's end. He opens one door and slips inside, windmilling his hand to beckon the others over. They pull the doors open, awaiting the stampede...

[Nob(#16122)] Slowly indeed. The oxen look up lazily as the doors are opened - a milk cow bawls. The horses stamp uneasily. It is a calf that moves first, peering out of the open stall and darting into the farmyard. Its mother follows.

Brev's jaw is still set stiffly. At Aearon's words his cheek twitches. Perhaps it's in response to the glance over his shoulder, perhaps his motivation is quite different; in any case, he steps forward out of concealment and says scornfully, "It's only a boy. Want me to handle this one, so you can get your hands on the valuables before Runner gets overexcited?" He smirks, though it is a little forced.

A few weeks of beard growth cover his chin, but the singsong accent still marks him out somewhat.

"No!" Thomas backs up a step, fish-staff still held crosswise, his young voice squeaking. "Go away!!!"

Then...Brev steps in, and the boy squeaks again, fear rising in his voice. "You! I know you!! You're with Caoimhe!" He points the staff toward Brev's belly.

The fish swing.

Runner is a little confused by the cows -- he grew up in a chicken-oriented family, anyway -- and hurriedly opens the rest of the stalls, giving each of them a little prod with the dagger-hilt. "Off you go," he growls. "Shoo! Shoo!" He fumbles about for tinder and flint. Fire always speeds things up...

     Looking to Brev as he comes from the bushes Jarel says "I think we should have some fun with this one first.. It wont take long.." Looking back to the young buy with another evil smile he raises his spear and swings it at him, blunted end first saying "I told you to drop that boy!"

"That's right," Brev agrees amiably to Thomas. "So I think I owe you a little thank-you. Oh, and I get the fish too? Nice." His left hand shoots out to grab for the fish-line; should he succeed, he'll tug. His right lowers his spear as though he were readying for the attack; unfortunately, given the oblique angle he's standing at, it looks set to cross with Jarel's.

Back at the barn, the oxen snort uneasily at the smell of fire, and one of them lowers its head and starts lowing. Loudly. The horses, more highly-strung, bolt, but one of them lifts a hoof to kick back at the creature that has prodded it.

The calf trips out, followed by a milk cow. They are patted and pushed roughly by the bandits outside -- but now there is a cry from within. Runner, it seems, has received the kick full in his skinny chest, and fallen over -- dropping the blazing torch.

It falls perfectly onto the straw of a stall. And it is rather dry in there ... A light flashes to life!

"Hey!" Thomas squeaks again, fear making his voice suddenly higher. The two spears clatter against each other, Brev's blocking Jarel's, but Brev tugs on the fishing line and Thomas staggers forward. No coward, Thomas gets angry at this, and tries to jab his fishing pole into Brev's stomach as he is jerked forward, hanging onto his fishing pole for dear life.

     Glaring at Brev because of the blocked attack, Jarel says nothing, his face only reddens with anger. Reaching out with his hand he goes to smack Brev upon the back of the head and then once swings his spear like a club, aiming at the young boys head.

Brev says nothing as his arm is jarred, but his features twist into a scowl at the sounds coming from the barn. "Kiern, he'll have the whole place down on us," he mutters sourly. "Can you see if they're awake yet?" He asks Jarel, without turning away from Thomas himself.

Now that he's got the line in his hand (a half-ripped cuff protecting said hand for the moment at least), he doesn't seem prepared to relinquish it; however he sidesteps so that Thomas' jab meets nothing but air. "You'll need to try harder than that if you want to hit me," he informs the youth. Kiern, you can't even hold a-"

Jarel's backhand catches the side of his head and reflexively he ducks, pulling the fishing line downwards with him. "What's that for?" he demands.

Another light wakes to life, twin to Runner's - but this one is in the house. Likely the farmer has woken and is stumbling around donning his clothes so he can go to see 'what's wrong with the animals'.

The rest of the animal parade stampedes out, lowing and neighing and kicking frantically -- Runner is clinging for dear life to an ox, his hair and scraggly beard greatly singed. "Grab the taters!" he squeals, perhaps a little louder than is safe...

Behind the bandit, another stall has caught fire and is blazing away.

It's the downward jerk on the fishing line that saves Thomas: Jarel's blow connects with the back of his head, but much lighter than it otherwise would have. Still, the youth flies forward and down, winding up sprawled on his stomach. His hands scrabble in the grass for the fishing pole, which he tries to poke up into Brev's groin.

     Seeing his blow connect the grin on Jarels face returns and he snickers as the boy falls saying "Not a wise choice.." Abandoning his spear he attempts to leap upon the boy, while retrieving a small and rather dull lucking dagger from his belt.

A ragged laugh goes up from those of the bandits who'd remained on the fringes at the sight of Runner's 'steed'. "Get'm yerself," one fellow returns, struggling with the rope he'd flung round the neck of the calf. At least one sack of potatoes has already been trampled; the rest are lifted despite the words.

"Get'm stinkin' tubers and go!" shrieks Runner, seeing the lights in the house flare to life. "Or help me herd 'em off!" He falls off promptly, rolling out of the way of the stampede -- scrabbling for his dagger.

Dogs bark, crazily so now. Maybe one of them is irritated enough to try to come after runner and snap at his backside.

It's hard not to be distracted with the sounds of a menagerie right behind one. Brev is jerked forward by the weight of Thomas' falling body, and he half-stumbles himself. That in itself is enough to save his manly virtue, for the pole-end intended for his groin connects instead with his outer thigh. It must surely be painful - a hiss testifies to that. And then from that thin pole-end comes an ominous crack. "Stupid to aim for a target above your head, laddie," Brev informs Thomas through clenched teeth.

And then Jarel flings himself forward. "Get out of the way, idiot!" the Dunlending growls, for his spear is already in motion - though with the blade turned so that the flat would strike a target. Odd, that.

By now the farmer has emerged from the house, wearing trousers, coat and boots but with a nightcap on his head. He gives one horrified look at the barn and yells at the top of his voice, "FIRE!"

A scream comes from the boy as he attempts to cover his head at Brev's threat. Jarel would have a clear shot at jumping on him.

"Argh! Bleeding mongrel!" Runner yelps as one of the dogs fastens securely to the seat of his trousers. He swats at it with his open hand, having lost his knife. And then he sees the farmer. and prepares to run. "Grab'n'go, lessgo!" he calls to the scuffling trio, shoving the roped calf toward the other bandits (who have dropped a sack of potatoes and are now stumbling on the fruits of their labor).

The dog yelps, lets go and then growls and barks, lunging for Runner's ankles, its packmates picking up the hunt too--so that suddenly all the dogs are setting upon Runner. Seeing if he'll live up to his name.

     Looking to Brev as he shouts Jarel lands upon the boy, but does not stab him. For Brevs blow lands and causes Jarels own blade to cut open his arm with a screech from the bandit, while Brevs spear cuts upon the back of his shirt. Looking back to see the farmer out of the house and yelling. He attempts to thrust his elbow into the back of the boys head while he bleeds all over him, all with an evil look upon his face and says "You will pay for that Brev.. You will pay dearly.."

Thomas shouts at the blow to the back of his head, trying to twist about to get at Jarel, but he can't. He's screaming now, incoherently almost, and those damn dogs are yapping and bark, the horses panicked, cows mooing.

Runner is swift, though not so much when his backside is sorely bit and his ankles chewed upon -- he shrieks, leading the pack of dogs (and perhaps the farmer with an oxgoad) on a merry dash across the lumpy rows, tearing up clods of dirt (and numerous potatoes).

"I'm trying," Brev tosses back in the direction of Runner without turning his head. The small sack of potatoes he'd slung at his back is still there, if no doubt somewhat shaken and battered; moreover, in his left hand the two fish still dangle from the short length of line that's all he's left with. The sound of snarling dogs impinges on his concentration, and it's not pleasant. And ... there's blood on his spear. Jarel's blood.

There's a lot of confusion, unlikely anyone's watching anyone else at this point ... "Yes," Brev agrees softly with Jarel, though it's drowned out by Thomas' screaming. And his right arm plunges the spear down toward that oh-so-tempting target of Jarel's exposed back. This time, it is not the flat of the blade that he's using. It's the point.

     Rolling off of the boy as he sees Brev try to spear him in the back again, though blow could possibly strike the lad? Gtting to his feet with a quickness he looks about the area and sees everything crazy, and glaring at the boy and his fellow bandit he darts off into the wood.

The screaming from the boy stops suddenly--he's very quiet. But the dogs bark and the animals scream their terror of fire. Thomas lies facedown in the mud.

The torn-up potato rows end deep in the forest -- and the yapping pack clusters around a tree, wherein crouches Runner. He is hurling small, hard potatoes at them in an attempt to drive them off.

The farmer and his family are, of course, trying to put out the fire. But one of the farmhands has spotted the human figures 'aiding' the departing livestock and yells out loudly, "Thieves! Brigands! We're being attacked!" Breefolk are not fighters by nature, and its unlikely he'd know what do do with a bandit if he caught one, but it doesn't stop him yelling at the top of his voice and waving a pitchfork as he charges after the retreating robbers.

Brev's spear is already in motion when Jared rolls clear; it cannot be recalled. And there's only so much one can do to pull a blow. The speartip, glinting streaked red in the flame, plunges down toward the lad's shoulder.

The spear finds flesh, is jerked free. "Whelp's dealt with now," Brev announces aloud, the words harsh and guttural. He bends for a moment to Thomas' head, and mutters something softly - a final insult? Then he too takes off into the woods.

The final words are, in fact, some that Brev has rarely, if ever, uttered. "I'm sorry."

A stray dog pulls away from the ones menacing Runner and follows its nose toward the enticing smell of fish.

The farmhand with the pitchfork, charging onward, finds his way blocked by ... a body? "Here's one of 'em," he yells, at the top of his voice. "Oughter lock 'im up, we should. Someone come help me with the varmit!" And he bends to try to drag the injured 'bandit' back to the farm. Not till later will someone recognize the injured youth, and think to send for a healer ...


(Dramatis personae:

Nob as ambience/livestock,

Nurenhir as Runner,

Brev as Brev and farmfolk, 

Aearon as Jarel,

 Thomas as Thomas and the dogs)

Date added: 2010-08-27 04:50:46    Hits: 76
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