Dungeon of Graves AP report: Marat meets new friends

Here I was, in the wake of Peter D's post collecting all of the Dungeon Fantasy actual play reports into a single post, lamenting the lack of any way to contribute. Then I remembered that I actually am in a DF game, it's just being done in a play by post environment, over on Myth-Weavers. It took some serious reformatting, but I've got a little something here I'm not afraid to share, about how my character joined the team in media res, as it were. The GM wanted to get me started more quickly than waiting for them to get back into town (PbP games are notoriously slow paced) so he wrote in a disaster for me to be recovered from.

My character, Marat Blackthorn, is a salty old scout, with time in the King's army as well as some time as a mercenary before he started in on the adventurer life. He's a bit rough about the edges, and has a fondness for wine, women and knucklebones that keeps him working to afford more of the same.

I woke up in a small, dark room. The pain was enough to remind me why I was hiding, but bad enough to elicit a groan anyway. I sat up, and waited for my eyes to adjust to the dim, cursing myself for falling asleep while there were enemies so close by.

Loosening the laces on my armor, I pulled it away a bit to survey the damage. I knew it was bad from how badly it hurt to breathe, and the enormous purple bruise wasn’t unexpected. One doesn’t take a direct shot from an ogre’s club without feeling it, after all.

Recalling the fight and my ignoble departure therefrom brought forth enough shame to briefly eclipse the sharp stab in my chest every time I moved. It had been a no-win situation, and getting away as wounded as I was had been difficult enough, let alone trying to save any of my comrades. Damned ogres, and damn that Wintz for failing in his duties to keep a strong look out. Being ambushed by something as big as a pack of ogres isn’t something you brag about at the inn to the ladies, after all.

The door to the room was still spiked, and I could vaguely recall hearing one of the ogres follow me, but turn back when the rest of his clan called out to him. But now, the sound that had woken me wasn’t that of any ogre, but a man. Bellowing, and accompanied by the sounds of combat, but still just men. Just as quickly as I’d noticed it, the sound ceased, replaced with the sound of more men, talking, muffled enough that I couldn’t understand their words.

I decided I would do well to investigate, not knowing for sure where in the hells I had hidden myself, and keen to get out and back to town to heal up a bit. I pulled the spike from the door where I’d placed it, and snuck quietly out of the room, bow at the ready but not yet drawn - it hurt too much to hold that sort of tension while I walked. Whoever it was, down the hall, wasn’t being very quiet about things, and I was able to close the distance without much trouble.

After surveying the situation, where they debated what to do with the unconscious fellow they’d apparently been battling, and hearing that one of them was a holy man of some sort, I decided to make my presence known. Keeping my bow down and unready, I stepped into the room and announced myself.

“If you lot have figured out which of you is crazy, and which isn’t, I’d be obliged if you might invest some of Pelor’s grace into healing t’is grievous wound.”

The conversation stopped, and while one fellow briefly aimed his crossbow at me, no blow fell, and no dart was loosed.

“And for the love of all that’s holy, and every mother goddess, tell me that you’ve either taken out that party of ogres as got me and mine, or saw ‘em leave before you came in?”

The holy man was the first to recover from the surprise. “Who are you? How did you come here? Ogres? We’ve seen no ogres.” Then he paid closer attention to my state, and with an abashed expression offered, “I can try to heal that...”

As he approached, I couldn’t help but blurt out, “Gods, man, have you not seen them? Then let us pray fervently that my mates were enough to satisfy their hunger for a while. My whole team was slaughtered by t’beasts and I only just managed t’get away, though it galls me like a green apple in my gut to have been unable to save even one of them.”

Crouching by the wall, I let the man come close enough to lay hands upon me and continued my tale of woe.

“We came in much as you and yours, I’m sure, each with his own reasons for braving the Graves. We just managed to bite off more than we could chew is all. I don’t know how long I’ve been down here, as I hid in a side room after I managed to escape, and only just came to as I heard you lot battlin’ and roarin’ and such.”

Glancing up to meet the eyes of the fellow, I concluded, abashed, “I’d be in your debt if you could find your way clear to help me with the leechin’ o’ this wound. T’is fair certain I’ve a few broken ribs, and some as are piercin’ me lungs in a bad way.”

One of the others called out, “Go on, nursemaid. He’s lookin’ like he’s wantin’ a bit of yer ‘holier than thou’ magic.” Then he turned back to his other companions. “So, what were ya gonna do with this crazy man we put to sleep? I really ain’t looking to be babysittin’ nobody.”

The holy man’s hands took on a pearly glow, and the touch of them was soothing, cold and hot at the same time. I heaved a sigh of relief as the pain fled, and the bruise departed. Even the sigh was pain-free as his healing magic undid the damage wrought by the oaken club.

Having attended to me, the fellow stood back up and declared to the gruff fellow behind him, “Don’t worry, just put him in the cart. I know the way out now.” He paused and looked off to one side like he was listening to something we couldn’t hear, or seeing something we couldn’t see. “Well,” he finished, “Ulrik does.”

“Oh, that’s good!” I declared, rejuvenated. “All praises to your Pelor, friend.” Gathering my bow, I continued, “Now all I need is a cup of wine or three, a feather bed, and,” with a pause to survey the makeup of this new crew, “some fine company and I’ll be right as rain.”

Introductions were made with the man that had healed me, who called himself Gareth Greenwood, High Crusader of the Temple of Pelor. He didn’t look but sixteen or so to me, green wood indeed, but he claimed a mighty title.

The fellow with the crossbow and the cart declared his desire to examine an ogre, which I thought sounded like so much nonsense, but I kept my mouth shut. These folks, crazy or not, might be my only way out of the place.

They were a strange group, and no doubt. This Greenwood fellow, a holy warrior all in mail and plate, with a nasty morning star as his weapon of choice. His companion, a homely fellow who reminded me of nothing so much as the heavy infantrymen I’d worked with back in the army, in even heavier ironmongery, with a wickedly long sword. And the third fellow, who had the look more of a greengrocer than a delver, all kitted up in some manner of mechanical device, with a crossbow and the cart the other fellow had been speaking of. And finally, strangely silent until now, a wee pixie lass with a tiny bow of her own.

Gareth declared that some manner of spirit, sent by Pelor, had given him directions on how to make our way out, and I chuckled.

“I do love a scout as isn’t afraid of going first, seeing as he’s already dead...” and prepared myself to get out of this nasty hole in the ground and see about regrouping for another run at the place when I’d secured another team. Next time, a solid mage would be on my required list.


  1. Reports as a player bring a nice angle on things, and be fun to read for the GM and other players. Great idea.

    1. Thanks! it'll be a slow one, as it moves at the pace of the slowest posters, so I suspect it'll go to monthly updates at best.


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