Holding his hand above his head to block the bright sun, Beomer awoke to a calm yet eerie feeling. The reminder of the horrible storm was evident as his eyes quickly scanned the damage of the Amear vessel. No mast, damaged bow, shredded rigging! Clearly, he and Usul were no match against mother natures fury… or the magic that conjured such a powerful storm. As Beomer pushed himself to an upright position he was relieved to see land on the eastern horizon. Scanning back to the west all that could be seen was the now calm sea merging with the western sky and a sullen and dejected Usual staring back at him. Both men recognized the need for a complete refitting of the storm torn vessel. Both Charon and Brightfang expressed an urgent desire to gain landfall as quickly as possible. They did not enjoy the tumultuous high seas adventure lead by the 2 novice sailors. Beomer smiled at Usul and let out a gruff yet clear cackle “At least were alive”! The two men then gathered what scraps of wood that still remained and rowed to shore.
Beomer scouted a hidden inlet amoung the swampy reeds where the boat could be anchored and hidden for repairs. Tired and frustrated, the Amear and Outsider began the exhaustive process of beaching and then carrying the vessel to the top of a small rocky ledge covered in winter pine. Certainly this would protect them from the sight of any forest dwellers or unwelcome weather. Fortune certainly seemed to be with them as upon cresting the small hill they discovered a small cave that could serve as shelter and workshop for their repairs. Alas, the gods show favor. Beomer prepared camp while Usul transformed into an eagle and scouted the area. All was well! First boat repairs and then to begin the search for their seperated party members.
Four days had passed and all the wood preparation had been completed. All that was needed was to complete the assembly. The tar substance created by Usul, although not perfect, would serve it’s purpose in sealing the boats many flaws. However, to complete the repairs we needed to move the boat higher land which would expose us potential threats. It could not be avoided.
On the morning of day five, the boat was moved to the repair location. After such time Usul took to the skies as something foul was in the air and we couldn’t afford to be surprised. We were vulnerable, needed the boat repairs complleted if we had any chance os making time to find our seperated party members and based on review of the map, we were in gnoll country.
Beomer began to work vigorously but certainly not quietly and repairs were coming along nicely. Then an uneasiness fell upon Beomer as if something was watching him. No, he didn’t like it at all. Charon was down by the water quenching her thirst. As Beomer turned to survey the area. he thought to himself, “I see you Mr. Satyr”. I short 4 foot man beast, horns protruding from his forehead, goat fur covered legs with hooves to for feet. A previous encounter with the little beast men had left Beomer a little prejudice. There would be no negotiation, no diplomacy. Beomer quickly drew his spear bounding quickly toward the enemy when the trees and groundcover came to life reaching at his every step. Beomer thought “Not this time you little bastard. I will cut your head off and serve it to the fish!” He yelled “Charon, Charon”. He then released his spear and bound to the side hoping to avoid the plants grasp. The spear struck wood with that quivering sound you only want to hear in tribal competition. Not in life and death struggles. As fate was gracious today, she was also cruel. I rolled out of the plants reach only to realize I was being flanked by a second beast. “Then two it is and two must die”! Quickly drawing the black obsidian blade, the strike was true. From horn to horn the blood spewed forth. Turning to my left to receive the first Satyr, I saw fear and then absolute hate in the eyes of that beast. Her lover was dead! I could only hear the low growl closing distance from behind me, at which time the she beast fled. I pursued with the fury of hell’s fire. Vengeance would be mine. The frustration built and my blood boiled as no matter how fast or cunning my skills were, the she beast seemed always to be just out of reach. I had already pursued to far and as the half size female beast entered the thick brambles of her home, I knew she had gained her life and freedom. I quickly returned to the landing where I needed to complete my repairs as we were no longer hidden by anonymity and shadows.
Upon my return to the boat Usul was standing there to receive me with grave and dire news. A pack of dog men were on our scent and headed in this direction. Waht else could go wrong. Surely fate had some good news, but not today! With little time to spare, I quickly finished the taring of the vessel and with Usul’s assistance returned her to the water. The barking could be heard in the distance. Twenty? Thirty? Maybe a hundred? The barking was coming from all direction and getting closer. No time to reassemble the mast. We must escape and now! Loading the newly constructed mast from stern to bow, we began to row. The howls were close and it was a matter of seconds. We may have waited to long! Doom was upon us. Over the ridge came a wave of dogmen, maybe ten now, but more were following! However, once again fate showed her love. We caught a current and began to move rapidly out to sea. And yes, as quickly as she gave us hope, fate cruelly laughed and spat on us. Oh she was merciless.
By the power of sorcery, the boat started to shake and bend and rip apart right beneath our very bottoms. I could not help by notice the she beast standing on the hilltop with a menacing grin as she conjured might to rend our vessel into splinters. Into the water we splashed only to be joined by the dog men in hot pursuit. How could this be? They all seemed to be working together – Satyr and Gnoll. And then, yes then, at that moment I saw the answer! Rising onto the hilltop, it stood about nine feet tall with bear like fur although it was not a bear. It walked upright and seemed to have intelligence. It’s eyes were fixated on us. What was this new foe? And then it hit me like a thunderclap. This was a Ghur! A young one, but a Ghur none the less. And it was hunting us. My mind was locked in, my body frozen, when I realized I needed to keep moving! We must escape! Prepare! This was why I was sent here!
Snap, everything was moving so fast, and the realization that several dog men had gained on us when a crackling light emanated from Usul sending two of the barkers carcasses floating on their way. Grabbing the mast which had been spared from the menacing spell of the she beast as it was unattached to the vessel, we all clung to its sides. Using the true magic I was able to speed our getaway, but not without great loss. How would we ever get back to the Amear through a hundred miles of Gnoll country? Surely, this was a bad dream I would awake from soon.