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The door is opened! [Gundabad Quest]

Tags: Logoz,  Bolosi,  Graim,  Oskar,  Unnar,  Elrohir

Short Summary: The Dwarves and their allies return to banging on the door - this time, dogged persistance pays off
Date (real-life): 2011-05-03
Scene Location: Gates of Gundabad
Date (in-game): October 3052
Time of Day: Night?
Gates of Gundabad

Here, the gates within the mount which were a second line of defense to Durin the Deathless and his sons, long since vanquished. Signs of Khazad ghosts linger about these near-depths of the peak, marking the passage of a broken cobble road which plunges still deeper into the face of Gundabad.

Into the rockface, two great statues have been graven in the likeness of dwarves; they stand as hosts with arms spread broad in kind reception on either side of a high arch which must once have been gated with doors of stone - their faces have been broken and marred, beards cleaved and shattered upon the ground. Beyond these are the secrets of the mountain, where orcs are known to dwell in the deep.

But see here! The way through this ancient doorway is barred by an ugly, formidable portcullis wrought of black iron, and it squats in the ruined archway as though daring invaders to attempt its breach.

Contents:
Portcullis

Obvious exits:
Ruined Gates and Upward Slope



Real time is: Tue May 03 14:24:50 2011
Game time is: Twilight <21:14:30> on Sunday, Day 30 of October (Autumn) 3052



Deep within the bowels of the mountain vales, there is little light to be found, but those who dwell here need little of it regardless. Outside the ancient, almost ruined gates of Gundabad there linger a party of orcs; guards by the look of them, and their cruel eyes keep watch upon the trails and tunnels that lead hither from the surface.

"I think Muglok was making it up," grunts one to the others. "Dwarves? not a sign of 'em, other than his report, and I think he must have hit the grog..."

[Bolosi(#31483)]
     Under the shadow of the Great Mountain, a low hum begins to rise. It resounds and echoes upon the ancient stone, haunting and grim. Louder and louder it becomes, until words can be heard. Obscure characters, alien to most. Booming and deep, harsh and fierce. A tongue as old as the halls of Durin themselves.

 A war chant. Suddenly, upon the decrepit path, the figures of Khazad appear; shorter than men, but broader and sturdy, as if hewed from hard rock. Torches flicker and crackle, casting ghostly figures upon the mighty walls; as if the souls of the ancient Naugrim lords rise at the stirring of their folk. Mail glistens in the firelight, and the tinkling of weapons can be heard. Axes, hammers, swords and shields; all the panoply of war has been raised in aggression.

 They come with axe and fire. They come with the tools of siege; for although those leading the horde are dressed in the thickest armour, and wield unyielding weaponry, those in the middle ranks bear a far greater burden; a huge trunk, hacked from the ground not so far from the Dwarven camp. It has been stripped and carved, the end transformed into a huge battery designed for the smashing and breaking of orcen defenses. As is its purpose today.

 Marching by the head of the assembly, is Bolosi of the Iron Hills. Warg-tosser, as his fellows Horgor and Folli, who march by his side, like to jest. Dressed in his father's mail rings, the captain's great axe is lifted in challenge to the foul horde defending the portcullis. His lips move as the words of the Khazad war chant form upon them; but as they draw closer, he ceases its utterance. Glancing to his companions, he whispers hoarsely. " This is it, comrades. The war on Gundabad is begun."

[Graim(#20753)]     "Though defaced, we stand under the gaze of those that have come before us, lads," comes another whispered Dwarven voice from near the head of the formation, like a quiet rockslide. "Do nothing to disappoint them and strive to follow their example." The voice belongs to one Graim, warrior-healer of the Lonely Mountain. Mace gripped in one hand, shield in the other, the Dhurenfal is quite ready for war.

[Oskar(#28429)] A bit farther back, is Oskar. The old cook will not be left behind. "I'll die with my axe in my hand," he says, crankily swatting aside those who would try to stop him. "And you all can poison yourselves trying to cook properly." And now he marches with the others, his deep-set eyes glittering and his axe over his shoulder.

Still further back, marching with his shoulder set to the great ram, is the young Dwarf Unnar. Their relentless progress leaves little breath in the lungs, but still he hums under his breath snatches of some ancient marching tune. A light is in his eyes and he murmurs eagerly, "Great glory will be won this day!"

Oskar's words interrupt his dreams, and he sends the old Dwarf an annoyed frown.

[Elrohir(#14756)]  
A taller form rises above the Dwarves, its grey shape ghostlike in the smoky, glittering march. Saying nothing, Elrohir fixes a steel gaze on the twisted gates ahead.

[Logoz(#19187)]
As the party advances towards the acient gates, the speaking orc is made to eat his words, and gulps involuntarily at the sound of the war-chant. Quick as a flash the guards are scuttling inside the geates, crying out in alarm to their fellows that linger within.

"Lower the spikes, you blockheaded swine!" comes one cry, ere it is answered by a babble from inside.

[Winding Precipice(#29466)]
With a sudden scrape and grate of iron against stone, the mighty portcullis hanging within the ancient entrance to Gundabad crashes to the ground! The way in and out is now barred, it would seem, lest might itself can force open this barrier.

[Oskar(#28429)] Oskar glares back and chants louder!

[Bolosi(#31483)]
     " If it has begun..." Horgor says quietly, drawing his longsword, such as a man would wield, "... Then let us end it with due haste."

 Bolosi gives a curt nod; but then, at the grinding of the portcullis, a flame suddenly ignites in those cool, blue eyes. He draws himself up tall, spreading his shoulders as his boots thud upon the stone. Fierce is his look; fanatic, almost. They have crossed the tallest mountains, traversed the darkest woods, and done battle with warg and troll to reach these very gates. Does the enemy truly think it can hold them?

 Lifting that battle axe high, he draws to a halt. Silence falls. The flames dim. And then, he throws back his head and bellows, " Baruk Khazad!"

 " KHAZAD AI MENU!" The others chorus.

 And with that, they charge, warriors parting to allow the make-shift battering ram through.

[Oskar(#28429)] Oskar's voice is lifted as one with the others, and he moves as if he would grasp the ram and put his shoulder to its weight; save that the others are already moving swiftly - there is no room, and he has his axe. He steps out of the way, pushing towards the front to see the results.

[Graim(#20753)]     Graim's voice joins the call of 'Khazad ai menu!' before he is off and running towards the portcullis. "Shields, raise up in case of arrows! Protect the ram!"

Oskar attacks Portcullis with his War Hammer and mildly wounds it!
The lattice of the mighty portcullis shudders and a great clang is heard as Oskar strikes it!

Unnar's head jerks up at the sudden clang, and the marching tune breaks off. "It was ... /open/?" Anger darkens the blue of his gaze. "And we let them shut it. Oh, the wisdom of the Dwarves." The words are bitter. He is young, however, and resilient; a moment later he reflects with a chuckle, "At least we know the mechanism works. Now let's see what this beauty can do to it."

Then no more breath can be spared for speech; as one the ram-bearers surge forward so that the ram can be brought to bear on the gates. Graim's order is well-spoken, for no thought can the rammers give to their own safety.

Witch-king attacks Portcullis with his Longsword and badly wounds it!
The lattice of the mighty portcullis shudders and a great clang is heard as Witch-king strikes it!

[Elrohir(#14756)]  
It is not only one side that faces the threat of arrows: hidden, Elrohir waits in the depths of shadow that the firelight does not lay bare, silvered mail glittering, longbow strung.

[Bolosi(#31483)]
     " Protect the ram! Protect the ram!" Bolosi bellows over the war cries, which erupt all around; apart from the general declarations common among Dwarven warriors, the personal shouts of Noble houses and minor lords can also be heard; indeed, this is an army of many lands. An army of travellers.

 The big dwarf leaps to Unnar's side, sliding himself beneath the great ram. Folli is swift behind him, but Horgor hovers on the flank of the group; he watches the wicked glow of orcen eyes behind the fang-like structure which separates them. His sword is held at the ready.

 " HEAVE!" Bolosi roars, driving forward.

Elrohir attacks Portcullis with his Longsword and badly wounds it!
The lattice of the mighty portcullis shudders and a great clang is heard as Elrohir strikes it!

[Oskar(#28429)] Oskar roars as the ram shakes the iron lattice, the sound rolling through the tunnels deafeningly.

[Graim(#20753)]     Now that there is a battering ram, the Dhurenfal does not strike the portcullis with his mace. Rather, he keeps his shield before him, waiting for the portcullis to fall so that the charge can begin.

Graim attacks Portcullis with his Mace and mildly wounds it!
The lattice of the mighty portcullis shudders and a great clang is heard as Graim strikes it!

A collective groan rises from the rammers as the ancient portcullis shudders, yet does not yield. The Dwarven bearers stagger, and one or two actually fall away. Dwarves are hardy folk, though, and those who have stumbled rise to their feet without a word. Rather dizzily, Unnar shakes his head.

At Bolosi's order, the ram-bearers move back ... back ... Again comes the rush. This time the gate responds with a clang fit to wake the undead.

[Bolosi(#31483)]
     " Again! Again!" Bolosi's voice thrums, feet tramping as he moves to draw back from the grate. " Steady... Steady.... HEAVE!"

[Oskar(#28429)] Oskar cheers again, along with the others who wait - either to replace a weary ram-shover, or to leap through the gap when the gate is finally knocked down.

Oskar attacks Portcullis with his War Hammer, but he misses by a mile.
The lattice of the mighty portcullis shudders and a great clang is heard as Oskar strikes it!

Elrohir attacks Portcullis with his Longsword and badly wounds it!
The lattice of the mighty portcullis shudders and a great clang is heard as Elrohir strikes it!

The lack of gate-collapse might be taken by Unnar as a personal insult, from the way he glares at the bars of twisted iron. But ... "It shifted that time," he claims suddenly. "A couple more good blows should do it ... wait, let's see." Pushing forward, he inspects the marks left by their efforts and pulls out his spiked hammer to strike testingly at the scratches, chin up and beard jutting as he dares any denizens of the deeps to stop him.

You attack Portcullis with your War Hammer...
Your attack against Portcullis mildly wounds it!
The lattice of the mighty portcullis shudders and a great clang is heard as Unnar strikes it!

"There," Unnar clarifies. "We must strike there." As swiftly as he may, he steps aside.

[Graim(#20753)]     "Fall, ye damnable thing, fall!" Hisses Graim quietly into his beard, staring at the portcullis as if the weight of sight alone could break the iron. He turns his gaze, watching for the next strike of the ram.

Graim attacks Portcullis with his Mace and mildly wounds it!
The lattice of the mighty portcullis shudders and a great clang is heard as Graim strikes it!

[Elrohir(#14756)]  
No shouts of encouragement or cheers from the peredhel, who thoughtfully sets a clothyard on to his bow, gloved fingers brushing its grey feathers.

[Oskar(#28429)] Another of the dwarves leaps forward to smash at the spot as well, while the ram is being withdrawn for another blow.

Oskar attacks Portcullis with his War Hammer and mildly wounds it!
The lattice of the mighty portcullis shudders and a great clang is heard as Oskar strikes it!

[Elrohir(#14756)]  
Again the tree-trunk, wrested so recently from its home above ground, swings towards the weak point of this hell-wrought gate.

Elrohir attacks Portcullis with his Longsword and badly wounds it!
The lattice of the mighty portcullis shudders and a great clang is heard as Elrohir strikes it!

Graim attacks Portcullis with his Mace and lightly wounds it!
The lattice of the mighty portcullis shudders and a great clang is heard as Graim strikes it!

You attack Portcullis with your War Hammer...
Your attack against Portcullis lightly wounds it!
The lattice of the mighty portcullis shudders and a great clang is heard as Unnar strikes it!

Unnar rejoins the ram-bearers in time for their next charge. Again the portcullis shudders, but no more than that. The bearers are tiring; perspiration beads their faces now, and their movements are slower. "Change rammers!" someone shouts out, and gratefully Unnar steps away as another, black-bearded and black-armoured, takes his place. The young Firebeard melts back into the shadows - not to rest, but to stare broodingly through the portcullis toward the deep dark beyond. Again he slides his spiked hammer from his belt, caressing it lovingly as he waits for the chance to taste black blood.

Each crash of the ram echoes and rolls round the cavern, and comes back distorted from the unknown tunnels. Whatever is waiting beyond, there is no doubt that it is long since awake ...

[Oskar(#28429)] With each blow, Oskar shouts again, and with each blow, more triumph fills his voice. Surely, it cannot be long before the way is clear.

[Graim(#20753)]     Graim scowls at the black iron, tapping his foot impatiently. Really, some things just do not have the decency to die or be destroyed...

[Logoz(#19187)]
With each thundrous strike against the fell iron, cries of derision and scorn turn ehind the portcullis into hollers of alarm and panic. It seems the goblins of Gundabad assumed their fastness would remain in tact forever, but they did not reckon with the mighty hammers of the Khazad nor the ram they have assembled.

An arrow or two snakes out from behind the grille, hoping no doubt to dissuade the brave party.

The goblins' dissuasions have little effect on the rammers; Unnar, though, lets out an exclamation of annoyance as one feathered shaft bounces off the tunnel wall beside him, missing his face by inches. "Come out and face us!" he yells, brandishing his hammer toward the barrier of the portcullis and striking it a blow at it in lieu of an orc.

You attack Portcullis with your War Hammer...
Your attack against Portcullis lightly wounds it!
The lattice of the mighty portcullis shudders and a great clang is heard as Unnar strikes it!

[Oskar(#28429)] Another dwarf, and then another, jump forward between blows of the ram, hammering on the iron. Their weapons bounce away - but with each blow, the portcullis is weaker. One of the arrows makes it past the shields, and there is a hiss of pain further back.

Oskar attacks Portcullis with his War Hammer and lightly wounds it!
The lattice of the mighty portcullis shudders and a great clang is heard as Oskar strikes it!

Graim attacks Portcullis with his Mace and lightly wounds it!
The lattice of the mighty portcullis shudders and a great clang is heard as Graim strikes it!

[Bolosi(#31483)]
     " Heave, brothers! Break, smash, wreck!" Bolosi's voice provides a constant stream of encouragement, willing his comrades to toil with every great strike. His cool eyes glance out, as they draw back one more, to the black grill; it is bent and warped, shaped by the tremendous battery provided by the ram, and powered by dwarven sweat. Arrows leap out in reply, striking like hidden vipers from the dark; a gurgle can be heard as a Khazad falls a-foul of one such wicked construction.

 But they will not staunch Dwarven fervour, nor halt the siege.

 " AGAIN! AGAIN! KHAZAD AI MENU!"

Elrohir attacks Portcullis with his Longsword and mortally wounds it!
The lattice of the mighty portcullis shudders and a great clang is heard as Elrohir strikes it!

[Elrohir(#14756)]  
The hiss of arrows being returned is lost beneath the tremendous racket made by the ram, but one half-elf archer, at least, returns fire from the side of the Dwarves.

[Oskar(#28429)] The iron shudders and groans, a few of the pieces tearing away from the others, and a roar goes up.

Graim attacks Portcullis with his Mace and severely wounds it!
The lattice of the mighty portcullis shudders and a great clang is heard as Graim strikes it!

[Oskar(#28429)] In a frenzy of fervor, dwarf after dwarf hurls himself at the great gate!

Portcullis collapses to the ground, defeated by Oskar!

[Portcullis(#29488)]
As Oskar delivers the latest blow, it proves to be the final one, for the iron portcullis buckles at last and falls from the groove carved for it into the rockface. A lurch of tortured metal then soon follows as it slowly topples inward; sundered chains following in its wake to rattle upon its corpse.

Oskar has done it. The invaders have won entrance to the stronghold of Gundabad!

Suddenly the stroke of the ram takes on a new note, deep and low, setting up quivering echoes. Then, with a splintering crash, it bursts asunder. A deep-throated cheer rises from the Dwarven warriors, and they throng to the breach.

[Bolosi(#31483)]
     " They have fallen! The gates have fallen!" Bolosi roars, whipping the great axe from his back and leaping forth to meet whatever may, or may not, emerge from the darkness. Horgor is first, though, leaping over the scrambling Naugrim as they attempt to scurry from the wreckage of the mighty portcullis. His long sword glints in the fire light, and he reaches a lurking archer within moments. Hacking out, he attempts to fell the goblin with one blow to the neck.

[Logoz(#19187)]
Beyond the breach there is a frenxy of panic and outrage from the goblins, though they do not tarry long to face this threat. With the dust of the falled, broken gate yetto settle, the orcs fire off a few arrows more ere they scurry and scramble their way deeper into the shadows of the mountain, leaving the entrance in the hands of the Khazad.

[Graim(#20753)]     The warrior-healer of Erebor is through the breach soon after, muttering something that may sound like plans for an orc-bone clasp for his cloak.

Yet not all can take the fight onward. Shrapnel from the sundered portcullis does not discriminate between goblin and dwarf, and several of the latter have fallen. Unnar, bleeding himself from a score to the cheek, drops to the side of one fallen form, offering what aid he may. Later he, too, will have the chance to share in the glory ...

[Elrohir(#14756)]  
In the mad march of the dwarves there is a lull for now, at least. The way is clear, the path leads deeper into the mountain, and Elrohir, setting bow and arrow aside, likewise tends to the weary and fallen.

Date added: 2011-05-04 08:24:37    Hits: 112
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