The knight introduced himself as Sir Chinsalis and, “none shall pass as I claim this bridge in the name of my Lord and of the Shuen [the pope-like figure of the Hyvalian Theocracy]. Those who wish to pass must convert to the true faith or defeat me in duel!”
Of course Bers challenged him.
Both of our fearless adventurers realized after the duel was agreed upon however, that they had encountered the crusader who has a bounty on his head (see Pt. 5) but were confident that Bers would triumph even though the paladin (it was obvious to Dead-Eye) had excellent equipment (full plate and a 6-legged [the Sleipnir] warhorse with chain mail barding). It was to occur at dawn at behest of Dead-Eye as he “had a plan.”
During the night before the duel while Bers rested in the farmer’s camp Dead Eye (Cris’ character) decided to sneak over the creek bed to feed Chinsalis’ camp and feed a Miniaturization potion to his warhorse to even the odds a little but was spotted by his squire whom was keeping guard (just in case something like that should happen, you can’t trust those barbaric Westlanders ya’know) and shot a bolt from his crossbow and missing by a mile after hailing the half-seen shadow in the depression of Farm Creek. Dead Eye slunk back off knowing he wasn’t seen well enough to be identified.
Dawn came and Bers faced down Sir Chinsalis whom was in full plate armor and mounted on a fully armored warhorse at the entrance to the bridge. The fight lasted for about 2 rounds with the horse dealing the majority of the damage to Bers and Bers severely wounding Chinsalis until the paladin backed down and purposed that they break and he dismount, to which she readily agreed and so they went back to their respective ends of the bridge and quickly drank potions as both were very near death. Once healed they went back at it with Chinsalis dominating the fight with his paired weapon: sword & shield ability using a shield bash to unbalance Bers and then to follow up with a sword slash, Bers was using her great axe with a two-handed grip through out the fight by the way. Of course, to regain her balance Bers would have to forgo an attack so she always chose not to catch her balance so inevitably she got knocked to the ground with a shield bash, on the first downing Chinsalis allowed her to get back on her feet the second time he held the tip of his sword to her throat and made her yield. This presented some cultural role-playing opportunities which never were explored (Jen’s new at this RPG thing so I let it go).
Westlanders (Bers’ culture) have a separation of society into civil and warrior and within those their own separate hierarchies or caste system. As Bers (and Dead Eye) are of the warrior caste they are bound by its laws and basically Bers was supposed to become the paladins thrall by Westlander law, now he is not a Westlander but an Ivoran whose culture is vastly different though sharing some similarity. Of course, the way around this is the paladin is not a Westlander and that he did not explicitly claim her life.
Anyway, after the duel our two faithful adventurers decided to walk around the bridge through the creek bed further up enough to not be seen even from afar but especially the bridge (the farmers couldn’t do this as they had fully laden wagons). They rested for another day to allow Bers to fully heal. During the night they had to fight off 3 medium sized trolls (probably latter generation trolls as they were bestial and had no equipment) getting them back into the good graces of the farmers whose lives they essentially saved. They had to wait another day as they both needed to heal after the fight. They left just before dawn and traveled North into the cover of a large copse named Old Grove and began to cross the creek just as they were able to pull their mule to the top of the opposite side they were confronted by an Otkid hunting party they were making quick work of the hunters and even slaying the chieftain but were unable to get to the real threat, their shaman. They both failed their saving throws and were transformed into rabbits. They were both grabbed by the feet and were about to be slaughtered and dressed for dinner right there.
Luckily this was when Chinsalis galloped up and having caught site of the situation as he came up was able to chase off the Shaman and the surviving faun savages and later restored the pair whom woke up in a tent realizing they were in Chinsalis’ camp after peaking out of the slit.
To be Continued…