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Hungry Trolls and Squawking Eagles (Three Horses and an Ass TP)

Tags: Lucy,  Ollie,  Findon,  Menelglir,  Aurfaen,  Sulgirion

Short Summary: The Gondorian camp's attempt to cross the Last Bridge doesn't go as planned. And Ollie's scheme works?
Date (real-life): 2009-12-10
Scene Location: Last Bridge
Date (in-game): August 26 TA 3048
Time of Day: Early Evening (7:23PM)
Weather: clear

The Last Bridge
The Mitheithel runs between the three great stone arches of this ancient bridge. To the west the road climbs a steep grade into the barren plains that lie to the south and west. Only the weather hills break the horizon in that direction. Forest girds the eastern banks of this river as it runs from the north. The road continues eastward between these tree covered hills. It is clear that the river is the only reason these forests have not spread westward, for they grow quite thickly.
Hawk Camp
Obvious exits:
West and East

The westward sky is bearded, beset with clouds gilded in the sunset. Color waxes and wanes from the world, along with the light. A northern wind prowls the surface of the Mitheithel yonder, whining softly about the stone pillars of that old stone structure, but for that, a silence is settled over the land.

Hoofbeats resound in the distance; there! to the west upon the road comes figures ahorse, approaching last bridge."So much for daylight," Says Findon, a tall and broad young man atop a gray horse, grey of eyes and black of hair -- like all these companions -- on a gruff tone of voice. His glance is turned forward however, turning none to his companions.

"Be wary."

"Poor timing," a second dark-haired young man answers. This one, Menelglir, drives a wagon, which now slows behind Findon. An odd sight for these parts, this wagon driver: helmed and armored as he is. His eyes roam ahead but also warily to the road's side.

"Do we risk a crossing now?"

The high-roads of the skies are not quite as silent as the earth below that lies in the dwindling day. A stronger wind rushes up on high, and with its colder fingers soars a dark shape, elongated on either side--the form of protruding wings, their enormous size masked by the distance it retains from Arda. The Eagle flaps its golden brown arms, thick with feathers that ruffle as it continues to glide slowly above the travelers. It seems to be following them, and the creature's head is cast downward, piercing eyes watching intenlty.

[Aurfaen(#16622)] "I don't like this," the Dunedain girl sitting in the wagon beside Menelglir murmurs, tugging anxiously on one of her long, raven-hued braided pigtails. Aurfaen grits her teeth and repeats, a bit louder, "I don't like this at all!" She turns to the Squire beside her and tells him, heat in her voice, "We should have stopped to make camp a ways back. This.."

[Lucy(#29415)] "Shh.. See? Lucy told you.. told you! Horseez, menz" a rough whisper passes between trees, still some distance away from the men.

"Fat 'uns they are! Tasty.. crunchy.. and the menz too. How many for us?" comes another gruff voice, this one causing birds to fly up and away from their nightly perch.

"SHHH! Enuffs.. There be enuffs. Lucy show you." Crackling branches, rolling rocks, swaying limbs may give away the direction of movement of a yet unseen, but undoubtably large mass. Voices are hushed now as they grow ever closer, the goliaths listening to the complaints of the humans.

And all these; wings beating in the stillness, the would-be obfuscation, turns Findon's regard swiftly, a hand falling to the pommel and grip at his side -- but its direction is as yet unsure. And quite off. "Nor do I, good lady," He says ere a moment, staring intently.

"We should go back."

And suddenly, there are more feathers in the air as the startled birds fly away and out of the trees that stand across the bridge. From that very direction the disturbance seems to reside, and it is to the West that Sulgirion moves his great gold eyes. The gaze narrows in concentration, and the large avian fixes it unblinkingly upon that line of dark trees--now growing more and more shadowy as night descends.

"In the morning, Findon," Menelglir adds quietly, his voice full of unease. He glances to his right, looking to the Ranger--and then to the trees as the birds fly up.

"Something is amiss here....Findon?" A hand on the hilt of his sword. He hesitates.

[Aurfaen(#16622)] "Go -back-? We shouldn't have even come this far! Not this late!" Rather frustrated, the young Ranger called Bunny mutters, "But no one listens to the girl. What does she know?" Yet she's as nervous as the rest of them, watching the birds that suddenly fly away. "Turn the wagon around, Menelglir?" Bunny asks hopefully.

The sun sinks down out of sight behind the rugged terrain, leaving you in the dark.

In hesitance, Findon's eye is averted from the woodland in favor of the ever darkening sky; searching perhaps for the winged messenger.

Buns' complaints goes unanswered, however, when he echoes her sentiment with sudden grimness: "Yea. Turn around."

[Lucy(#29415)] The ominous shuffling of the unseen presence pauses, much closer now. Close enough to really smell the humans and horses well, and Lucy rubs the back of a giant hand over her lips. "Theeeere.." she breathes, a low chuckle rumbling inside her large frame..

Temptation, and hunger, are too great.. and Lucy pushes through the last of the trees.. hovering in the ever growing shadows of evening between two large oaks. The smile that stretches over her face is humorless, and she begins to wonder if she would have enough patience to cook 'em this time.

Menelglir already has pulled on the reins to turn the wagon horse around when a glimpse over the bridge causes him to freeze. "Findon!" he calls out, pointing ahead to the massive dark shape.

"How fast can they move? Will a troll come this side of the bridge and how far?" The questions, fast, are asked of the Ranger.

[Ollie(#15066)] Oliver is just behind Lucy, peering around her - he is a bit shorter than that massive female. "Ponies?" he asks interestedly.

The great bird's eyes rove the dark, ere they finally set sight on the darker outlines framed between gnarled trees. A harsh and wild cry erupts from hooked beak then, a call with double purpose: to strengthen the hearts of the camp who even now seek to turn away, while striking fear into the minds of the hulking threats from the border of trees. Sulgirion shifts in the air, moving to the left in order to block out the light from the moon that now rises; suddenly his shape grows larger, and the illumination glints off the cruel talons and hazel gaze. Hopefully, it will keep the trolls' own eyes from discovering the humans for the time being...

A voice hard-edged and foreboding speaks, clipped with the accent of its avian race: "Who goes there? Turn back now, lest the angel of death claim you! For he comes upon you even now, to snatch you away in the dead of night." The Eagle quiets, waiting. Perhaps if this does not serve enough to dissuade the ologs, then it might be enough for the humans to retreat.

[Aurfaen(#16622)] Findon's agreement with the young Ranger's decision would normally bring a smug look or happy smile, but now Aurfaen's face only pales. Seeing not one but two massive shapes standing together in the darkness ahead, the girl tries very hard not to give a startled scream. She bites her lip, hard, then exhales and answers Menelglir. "Fast enough to get to us unless we flee- and of course they can cross it! But who knows what their whims are?" is her quick reply. Then, advice again, "Flee! Turn the wagon!"

Lucy's large eyes blink up, glowering at the giant bird flapping overhead. For now she remains just inside the cover of trees, but only just. She can tell she is spotted as the human voices begin to raise, the horses snort loudly and stomp the earth. She glances to Ollie quickly with a satisfied smile, nodding to his questions of ponies before turning back to look at the buffet. "You bring Lucy gift?" she asks, thinking herself sly and clever, as she speaks out loud enough for any to hear. The chuckling to follow is a wet, gurgling sound.. and she braces one large hand against a tree as she watches them.

[Ollie(#15066)] Oliver looks up. Then he tugs at Lucy's arm. "LOOK!" he says in a loud whisper - really loud enough to be heard several meters. "Ollie catches it!" The other troll doesn't reply, being fixated on presents, and he huffs annoyedly, fat fingers starting to unwind a rope from around his midriff, small beady eyes fixed on the figure in the sky.

Glance fleeting from Menelglir in the direction he indicates, Findon's eyes widen somewhat, and for a moment he is completely still; man and horse both. But only a moment; he stirs, and too the warhorse, though it more nervously than its rider:

"Big one," He remarks dryly, voice in accompaniment to leather creaking overloud; right hand firmly clenched about the hilts. "This the time for idle chatter. Turn around and move," He tells the wagonriders sternly yet with strained calm on the next breath, and this sentiment of Aurfaen's too is accompanied; a sheath's whisper, his eye bending on the confrontation between troll and eagle thither.

"I will bring up the rear. Now go."

No further warning does Menelglir need: He turns the wagon about, urging its restless horse into a quick pace--though a gallop with the wagon it cannot make.

And then on sudden he hands the reins to the Ranger. "You drive," he says, drawing his sword. "I'll not leave Findon alone should they attack." So he turns and watches even as they retreat.

The beating of the wings continues to blast against the air with the force of a gale. Sulgirion remains quiet, watching the beasts of terror ahead, though he is careful to maintain a sizeable distance from stony arm's reach. However, the rope is hidden from his sight, and only the sudden movement of Ollie's arms and hands draws a suspicious glance from the Eagle.

"Surely even stone possesses ears? Did you not harken prior? Be gone from here, creature."

[Aurfaen(#16622)] "Menelglir!" Aurfaen shouts as she finds the reins shoved into her hands. "This is -not- my wagon!" she yells at him quite loudly, seeing as the trolls already know where they are. Yet she urges the horses on faster. "You stay in here! Findon is capable!" she continues angrily as she steers the wagon, stealing a glance over her shoulder to see if they are followed.

[Ollie(#15066)] Oliver ignores what the bird says, eagerly fumbling with his rope - eyes still fixated overhead. The shout from the human brings his head around though, and a cunning gleam enters his eyes. Holding the rope behind his back, he edges along the treeline towards the retreating humans, then makes a dash after them... glancing up at the eagle every few minutes as he goes.

Ever and annon the rider -- who follows only a few yards behind the wain with what appears a complacent gait -- turns a glance over his shoulder.

And ere one such glance it is that without audible gesture, most like only with a gentle nudge of the knee, Findon slows his mount's pace to a long halt, turning about to the opposite direction, and there remains. On a quiet voice then, he murmurs:

"Maethoroe menel berio noss."

And as the troll dives, so does the giant winged demon of the sky; another shrill squawk splits the air as Sulgirion swoops toward the sprinting form of Ollie, and the wicked talons are outstretched; "You were warned," is all the bird yields as it skims low toward the olog's rough hide. The black claws are drawn back, purposing to graze the monster's stony left flank. No doubt it is like an oversized and feral butterfly nearing too close to the catcher's net--that is, if Ollie can move fast enough.

Findon draws his sword.

You attack Ollie with your Eagle Claws...
Your attack against Ollie lightly wounds him!

[Ollie(#15066)] But the troll has been watching for just this, planning on this, in fact, and as the eagle dives, Oliver stops chasing the humans and throws his rope into the air, trying to tangle it about the bird. Anywhere, anyway will do.

Arms outstretched, head back - he is wide open and unable to defend himself. And so it is that the cruel talons slice narrow parallel furrows down his shoulder. Good thing trolls have stony skin.

Taking no heed of the Ranger's words, Menelglir now jumps off the wagon, sword drawn. He stumbles, a step or more to gain his balance, before he rushes back toward the mounted Findon. A curious look is given to that Squire and then to the sight of the eagle attacking the troll.

Ollie attacks you with his Bare Hands!...
...and he hits! Ouch!

Though the existence of the rope was previously unknown, the Great Eagle quickly learns otherwise as the thing goes flying out; the giant wings beat furiously as the cord is spied, but too late. Too close to swerve away, Sulgirion lets out a fresh screech in a mixture of surprise and defiance as the trollish trap ensares his feathered frame. The wings struggle then to remain aloft as the avian becomes enmeshed. Slowly he loses altitude.

You forego your chance to attack.

"What in the blazes..."

So much for the slow wit of trolls! Ere a moment, Findon's stare on the proceedings further away narrows only a little, a scowl touching briefly his mien ere it fleets away. He draws a deep breath; akin to the gasp before the plunge into deep waters, but...

...His eye is caught, by movement near at hand to the side. And there is a twich about the corner of his mouth then, and he says dryly:

"Come to wish me luck, sweet brother?"

[Ollie(#15066)] Delighted as well as stunned by the success of his strategem, Oliver stands in frozen joy a brief moment before beginning to reel in on the rope. The men are forgotten entirely; who cares what they are up to. Visions of Eagle Stew; Roastered Eagle with Sahl; Eagle Potpie fill the troll's eyes with tiny pinpoints of light, and he licks his lips in anticipation.

"Come to aid you," is Menelglir's stubborn answer. "Though what aid I could give our ally..." he looks toward the eagle, "is beyond me. Still, you should not stay here alone while I flee back to safety with the wagon."

Sulgirion's beak moves and begins to hastily snip away at the rope which now binds him, and the talons avert from the direction of the troll to aid the curved mouth in its workings. The large stony hand that tugs at the other end is flashed a swift glare, and then the Eagle decides the source of the pulling is the more pressing matter. The tightening cord prevents any movement backwards, but forwards on the otherhand...

The talons come lashing out again for the thick fingers, heralded by another feral call from bird-lungs.

You attack Ollie with your Eagle Claws...
Your attack against Ollie lightly wounds him!

[Ollie(#15066)] The bird is nearer... nearer... Oliver's grin widens enormously. It is a thing of beauty and a joy forever, full of jagged teeth and rotting things. He lets go of the rope with one hand, and lunges for his prize - only to snatch his hand back in the next second, stuffing a finger into his mouth and glaring at the eagle. He hasn't so far forgotten himself as to let go of the rope thought!

ARB: Ollie has "passed" on his turn to attack.

And Findon replies, almost musingly: "Shame. We might need the favor."

"Ah, look at him struggle! There is little time, Menelglir, and I dare not try to carry you with me. I shall try a distraction, or cut the bonds -- Help him then, if you can!" So then he bounds off with tremendous speed toward the monstrous figures intertwined, leaning forward in the saddle, the sound of his passage akin to thunder on a wrathful day; and too he cries aloud:


As the raptor--though indeed, now the roles seem to be reversed--passes the enornous form of Ollie, the rope again hinders him from straying far from the large fingers. The Eagle's golden eyes flicker to regard the rope below, nearer that remaining hand. The rest of the cord is in a confused mess about his feathered body, and instead he dives for that lone hanging piece of the rope--the one connecting troll to dinner. The beak opens wide to cut it.

You attack Ollie with your Eagle Claws...
Ollie dodges your attack.

"Ride well, brother, and strike true. I remain here to help when I can." Menelglir follows after the charge of Findon, heading toward the bridge so that he is near enough to join when needed but still out of the fight. He waits.

[Ollie(#15066)] Oliver pulls his finger out of his mouth and looks at it - it's not so bad... and he looks up in time to see the eagle doing strange acrobatics in the air, but to no avail. Eagerly, the troll reaches up for the rope, to haul the great feathered creature closer - just as Something comes screeching up from behind. And instead of pulling the eagle in again, Oliver swats blindly behind him, waving his free hand in the air like he is shooing away some enormous mosquito. "MINE," he roars. "YER CAN'T HAVES NONE!"

But, pausing none, the answer is given on a note in kind, wrathful and loud with its southern lilt: "He is not yours to claim! Cease and begone, or I shall make you."

Findon offers no time to heed that warning -- impotent though it may prove to be -- steering aside the troll's one mighty hand, whilst hewing with all his weight, and indeed that of his mount's, at the other.

Ride-by, as it were.

Findon attacks Ollie with his Longsword and mildly wounds him!

Amidst the chaos of flailing olog limbs, rope, and feathers, Sulgirion's gaze manages to catch sight of the squire's approach. "Turn back!" the beak opens to rasp then, in between strained breaths as the trap grows firmer and firmer. "Valor will not save you the danger of being squashed." The avian's attention focuses now on the waving hand, and despite his own situation, the sky-dweller seems to be equally concerned for the Gondorian's own safety.

A new dive is made forward once more, this time aiming for the hand that threatens to strike Findon; for surely though he has now riden past, the man is not away from Ollie vast reach.

You attack Ollie with your Eagle Claws...
Your attack against Ollie mildly wounds him!

[Ollie(#15066)] There is a flurry of chaos - the Thing from behind turns into a slashing sword, brilliant in the moonlight, opening a thin cut across Oliver's hand. The troll growls and makes an aborted movement towards Findon; stopping just before he lets go the rope. And at the same time, wings flap in his face, and something cuts through the skin on his other hand. This one, free to do as it wishes, makes a fist and flails through feathers trying to hit the bird out of the sky.

Ollie attacks you with his Bare Hands!...
...and he hits! Ouch!

Ere slowing then, and wheeling about before he is carried too far, Findon's assessment with that shouldered glance might be summed up with a curse. But there is none such; only movement, turning at once the gray towards Oliver's shape and urging it on, once more back into the fray.

And hit it does: the success of Sulgirion's attack ends abruptly as the hard fist strikes out, and the bird gives forth a pained squawk as the stony thing collides with his large chest. Ollie's hand might be lucky enough to withdraw holding a few of the more tiny feathers.

Winded by the sudden blow, the Eagle falls lower still out of the air, and the majestic wings flap with more ferocity, raising a thick cloud of grass and dirt that wafts upward toward the troll's eyes. A twist to the side then, and the bird reaims for the solitary bit of rope that is yet clasped within the olog's mighty hand. Sulgirion's eyes narrow more, to see through the debris that has been pushed into the night air, and as he passes--beak reaching for target--he shoots the brave, if stubborn, human a stern look.

You attack Ollie with your Eagle Claws...
Ollie dodges your attack.

[Ollie(#15066)] Oliver squeezes his eyes shut as a whirlwind of dirt sprays up, but just a little too late. Head bowed, free hand clawing at his eyes, head and shoulders buffeted by great wings; the troll never-the-less clings single-mindedly to his rope. He can't pull it in, not with only one hand; and he can't use both hands for trying to get the dirt out of his eyes; but he will not let go.

Yet, for all it's reproach, the eagle's gaze is not met by Findon's own. No, his is fixed on a different -- if, no doubt, as stubborn -- thing. The thing that binds Sulgirion to the earth.


With grunt he rises up, standing near erect in the saddle to gain that much extra reach, slashing after the coils now.

Findon attacks Ollie with his Longsword, but he misses by a handspan.

Again that accursed segment of rope remains uncut, and again Sulgirion's momentum forces his flight to a sudden stop as the troll's grip is unyielding. He flips the other way; anything to keep moving, to keep airborne and away from those clutching fingers. The avian's storm of soil and grass has vanished, and now Oliver's sight would be unhindered. Even the noble-hearted attempts of Findon are for naught, as the cord stays intact.

But the sails that traverse the sky are not weak--and the beats of the wings come anew, and with added vigour: a last try for escape. But even now the great raptor is tiring from the night-long struggle..again he loses height..drawing nearer to the waiting troll's other hand.
You forego your chance to attack.

[Ollie(#15066)] Oliver drags on the rope, pulling and pulling. The eagle keeps resisting, and irritated now, the troll hits at it again. And then, no matter what the outcome of his blow might be, he determinedly sets off towards his home under the bridge, towing the great bird behind - either in the air or on the ground, but it is coming! Findon, he ignores completely now - a nonessential. It is only important that he get his precious prize to safety before someone comes along and steals it!

Teeth gritted, slowing pace and turning about to return, as Findon lays eyes on the troll and his would-be meal, his breath escapes him in a cry. For they are too far now, and in too dense terrain for him to give chase. "Ai! Hold fast, Sulgirion!"

"I will come for you!"

And what a mighty strike it is! Hard rough palm is all the giant bird sees ere the thing connects--there is a flash of stunning pain, and then odd silence. Dark tugs at the back of mind, and Sulgirion fights it back, but in vain. As his consciousness wanes, so does the flapping of the wings...and then the Eagle is aware of no more.

With a heavy thud he thunders upon the earth and lays still, unable to resist as the great lumbering beast drags him whither he will.

Date added: 2009-12-11 03:08:47    Hits: 136
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