Ongoing Games (In-Character)Play-by-post games are going on in this forum as we speak (well, read). All threads on this board are actual games, so please, only post on a thread if you are a player of that game.
As the evening deepens, the rain tapers off, leaving a chill in the air.
As you make some small talk with the locals and the barkeep, you learn a little bit about local geography. The road to Velprintalar heads east out of Ingdal's Arm. Three small towns (Urve, Urth, and Corth) lie between you and your destination.
You also learn that there are some merchant caravans taking goods to and from this port that may be in need of some "muscle", but those caravans generally head south from Ingdal's Arm to Delthuntle on the south side of the peninsula. That journey would take you on a path away from Velprintalar, and the pay frankly doesn't sound all that enticing.
When you ask the barkeep about any "jobs" that might be suitable for your group, he shakes his head. "Not too much need for adventurers in Ingdal's Arm, these days, that's for sure."
He pauses for a moment, looking the men over (more or less ignoring Sheyra).
"But if its gold you're after, you should stick around for the festival tomorrow. You look like a tough bunch of characters. You'd probably do pretty well in the Mud Bowl!" He laughs and several of the locals laugh with him.
It takes you a moment to figure out what "festival" he was referring to. Then you realize that it must be Highharvestide, the end of summer. The clouds and rain must be obscuring the full moon marking the midpoint of Elient.
"Your losing sight of the main goal. The sooner we Velprintalar, the sooner we can get the kris and the sooner we dont have to deal with Prozen. Relaxitation is last on our list of what to do. Like I said before, I cant ride a horse, and I am small enough to share one. We just need one for Boris and we can get going."
"One horse or two, we don't seem to have enough money for either option. Since the caravan is going in a different direction, that is not an option, and there seems to be no employment opportunities in this village. As I see it, we can stay a few days for the wrestling match and hope our ringer, that would be you Lithandril, can win enough to buy a horse or two. Another possibility is to start walking towards our destination. Hopefully one of the towns on the way may have more employment options."
Boris takes another swallow of his ale.
"There is one more option, but I dare not even think about it. We could stop drinking and us that money towards the purchase of a horse. I shudder to think of such drastic measures."
Into the East: http://3ep.rpgprofiler.net/3ep/view.php?id=18008
The bartender is happy to tell you all about the Ingdal's Arm celebration of Highharvestide.
With the coming of the fall, local farmers and merchants all gather together to show off their crops and wares and to simply celebrate the end of a long summer of hard work. Naturally, there will be much eating, drinking, and partying in general, but the highlight of the day will be the Mud Bowl.
The "Mud Bowl" itself is normally a watering hole and wallow for local livestock. On Highharvestide, however, the mud pit is transformed into the Ingdal's Arm equivalent of the Colosseum.
Cheering crowds line the edges of the muddy depression as the finest and fittest (and eventually filthiest) men of the area wrestle and pummel their way to the coveted title of Mud Bowl Champion!
Participants battle one-on-one in elimination contests, culminating in the Elite Eight, Final Four, then finally the Championship match!
No weapons, armor, or magic is allowed. Other than that, pretty much anything goes!
Last year's champion, Urgal the Fat, is returning to defend his title. The prize of 200 gold pieces (contributed by enterprising merchants who are given food and drink concessions in return) may seem modest, but the bartender confides with a wink that the real money is to be made in betting on the contests.
OOC: I lost internet access over the weekend, but I am back up now. Sorry!
"200 gp for the winner. I'm not even sure that will buy us a horse along with the saddle and tack needed for a journey. The barkeep is correct, if we are to make enough money, then betting is the way to do it.
Into the East: http://3ep.rpgprofiler.net/3ep/view.php?id=18008
"Lithandril, how about you join. Your pretty big, and to sport that large sword and armor takes a lot of strength. There is a good chance you might win. Boris, you could join as well. Unfortunately; frail little me will have to watch at the sidelines."
You retire to get some rest before the big festival.
The day breaks clear and sunny. After a hearty breakfast, you mingle with the crowds that seem to have materialized out of nowhere. The sleepy town of Ingdal's Arm suddenly seems to be as crowded as any metropolis you've been in in the West.
You sample the baked goods and beers of the area as well as the street performed before checking out the Board, on which are posted the competitors for the Mud Bowl.
The name, "Urgal the Fat," is already posted on the Board along with a half dozen other less colorful names. A halfling sits at a table set up next to the board. Two large bruisers stand behind him. The halfling seems to be taking down names of competitors. A small line of about 4 or 5 men stand in line, waiting to register. They all have the lean, tanned, wiry look of farmers or laborers.
The halfling smirks as he registers Boris. "Boris the Beautiful, you say? I hope wrestling in the mud doesn't mar your good looks!" His flunkies laugh hysterically.
The halfling's smile fades, however, when he sees Sheyra. "What is this? A joke? The Mud Bowl is for men, not little girls! Why don't you run back to the pie baking contests before your mama comes looking for you?" The flunkies laugh again.
The halfling leans around to look past Sheyra, "Who's next?"
*A man who was standing off to the side of the table, approaches the halfling with a good-natured smirk on his face*
"Come now Larrec", he jokes, addressing the Halfling. "Not once in four seasons have I ever seen you turn someone away from the 'pit."
*He looks at Sheyra, inclining his head in a short bow*
"Besides," he says again to the Halfling "I think she is a shoe-in to win the competition. So much Larrec, that I will wager you 20 gold that she wins." He says folding his arms across his chest, with a broad grin from ear to ear.
[OOC: Please see the OOC thread for a more complete physical description of my character]
The halfling shakes his head at Aeroz's words, still refusing to allow Sheyra to participate, but when the newcomer offers to put up some gold, the halfling seems to reconsider.
"Well, if you want to throw away some perfectly good money, that's your business, Miles."
He takes down Sheyra's name, and soon the first round pairings are posted. There is a flurry of activity around the main table as bets are offered and taken.
Bregon of Urve
Nagel the Bagel
Urgal the Fat
Boris the Beautiful
The halfling calls out, "Let's get ready to rrrrr-rumble!!!!!!"
The first two competitors enter from opposite sides of the pit, both bare to the waist. Bregon is a tall, wiry man with a neatly trimmed beard. Nagel, as his nickname suggests, is fat, soft, and round.
The two men circle cautiously at first, then they clinch and grapple. Nagel's weight appears at first to be an advantage, but Bregon manages a quick foot sweep, and Nagel goes down, face first into the mud. The crowd roars with glee as Bregon climbs onto Nagel's back and pounds him until his submits.
The second match is even quicker. Urgal's massive frame makes Nagel look like a skinny waif in comparison. Mendan Brollen curses his rotten luck at drawing Urgal in the first round, and enters the ring with a look of resignation. In less than 10 seconds, Urgal has Mendan twisted up into a pretzel, and the match is over.
Next up is Boris. Some hecklers in the crowd hoot at his scarred face. Piper is actually anything but small. Boris' opponent is tanned and broad shouldered. He nods in a friendly manner to Boris as he enters the pit.
OOC: I'll need a 5 round strategy posted in the OOC thread, rainbowvet. For everyone else, let me know if you are betting anything on this match. Since Boris is an unknown, the odds are even.
*Miles will look in the immediate area for a bucket or something else he can fill with water. *The goal is to have something that will hold (relatively) clean water. He will then fill the bucket with water if there is a convenient source (like a horse trough).*
*Miles will then look for a decent place to watch Boris' and Sheyra's match...preferably NOT in the front row.*
Edited to add actually filling the bucket with water.
Sheyra goes a little bit away from the arena into a nearby alley and pulls out her backpack, opening it as she does so. "Hmm... I wonder..." The girl rummages through her pack. "No weapons... armor... or magic... Hmm... Well, I wonder if that would actually be considered a weapon..." The girl mumbles to herself, thinking out loud as she pulls out her waterskin.
Sheyra grabs a small amount of soap from her pack and opens her skin, making sure to not spill any of the water. Humming quietly to herself, she grinds the soap into little pieces with her hands and pours the bits of soap into the skin. She then seals the skin back up and promptly proceeds to shake it up thoroughly, making a nice soapy mixture inside the waterskin. She grins, tying the skin to her belt with her belt pouch's string, stuffing the now stringless pouch into her pack. Singing quietly to herself, she skips off back to the arena to find a good position to observe Boris' fight, putting her pack on as she goes.
"Yeah, that or just slam his face into the mud and hold it there until he goes limp. Good luck. No pressure intended but if you or Sheyra dont win, we will have spies and assasins all around us."
Piper sloshes over to the center of the pit to offer Boris his hand to shake. "Welcome to Ingdal's Arm, stranger. May the best man win!"
When Boris reaches to shake his hand, however, Piper reaches forward, grabs Boris' wrist, and quickly hip throws him into the mud. The crowd roars its approval.
Piper throws himself down on Boris' back to prevent him from getting up and begins plunging Boris' head into the met mud again and again. The crowd hoots and hollers.
Boris manages to roll over onto his back and desperately punches back. One blow clips Piper hard on the temple. As Piper shakes his head to clear it, Boris rises up on an elbow, but Piper takes a handful of mud and smooshes it into Boris' face.
Coughing, Boris continues to lash out with his fists while Piper keeps trying to smother him with more mud.
Just as Boris is beginning to get lightheaded, a lucky punch smashes into Piper's face. Piper falls back into the mud unconscious.
As Boris rises from the muck, the halfling announces "The winner, by knockout, ... BORIS the beeeeeaaaYOOOOtifullll!!!!!!" The crowd goes wild!!!
Boris stumbles out of the pit and his "cornermen" Sedryn, Lithandrill, and Aeroz start wiping away the mud as best they can. He'll have less than an hour until he has to fight again in the next round. In the crowd, money changes hands and then the next fight begins ...
You hardly pay attention to the fight between Bo and Samethar, because Sheyra is up next ...
OOC: If anyone is going to bet for or against Sheyra, now is the time to do so. Also, magic may be forbidden in the Mud Bowl, but in between rounds, healing is permitted. Boris won't have enough time to recover the non-lethal hits he took before his next bout without aid.
*Miles slides over next to Sheyra, and whispers to her and any other PCs nearby.*
"My dear, you have a good chance to do well here. But, you don't want to do it quickly or easily. The closer the fights are at the end, the more money to be made. If they think you are hurting, the odds will be better in the next round."
*Miles winks at Sheyra.*
"Good luck my dear, remember to use your size to your advantage."
Sheyra looks at the man out of the corner of her eye, more out of annoyance then anything. "Do you mind? I'm trying to focus, and I don't appreciate your interruption." She snaps at the man, then turns back to the ring, eyes closed. She steadies her breathing, slipping into a mediative trance-like state, calming her mind and body as she prepares for the upcoming fight.
Sheyra focuses her mind, then enters the Mud Bowl. At first there are gasps of amazement, then raucous laughter.
"Are you lost, little girl?" "Watch out Federic, she looks like a tiger!" "I thought everyone had to fight topless!"
Sheyra ignores the heckling and settles into a ready stance.
Federic looks uncomfortable on the other side of the Mud Bowl. He walks over cautiously, "Look, I don't want to hurt you ..."
Sheyra lunges forward, planting a straight punch into Federic's solar plexus. Federic doubles over, gasping. Sheyra finishes him off with a double spinning hook kick/roundhouse combination.
There is a long silence as Sheyra stands in the mud, eyes shining, over her opponent.
Suddenly, the crowd erupts into wild cheering! Men whoop and holler excitedly, clapping each other on the back! Sheyra notices more than a few women in the crowd smiling happily. One gives her a "thumbs up" sign.
The crowd starts chanting and clapping, "Shey-Ra! Shey-Ra! Shey-Ra!"
Sheyra steps out of the ring, unsoiled (except for her bare feet), and starts to meditate for her next match.
After congratulating Sheyra, Aeroz and Sedryn notice something unusual occuring on the other side of the mud pit. Urgal the Fat and the halfling "promoter" are huddled together, having an animated conversation. As they speak, they cast unfriendly glances towards Sheyra.