Darthoniand

Jan 27 recap

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Background – Refugees from the last great battles between the Noldor
and Morgoth have settled the far-away land of Darthoniand (“last land”
in sindarin) on the southern edge of an impenetrable forest. Over 20
years, these settlers have built – with the aid of a Dark Elf and some
Dwarves – two towns, along with a series of watchtowers and a small
army of woods-rangers to fight the servants of Morgoth who find their
way to the land. More land has been settled to the west, where there
is very good farmland shielded from attack by the watchtowers to the
east and the river along the south.

With refugees from the battle of unnumbered tears arriving during the
past 2 years, a number of the more influential people in the land have
questioned the current passive policies. How would they fend off a
major attack by Morgoth’s armies? Where could they go if such an
attack came? They lack metals, allies, knowledge of the land. They
have plenty of food, and large amounts of wool for clothes, but all of
their tools and equipment and houses are of the most primitive nature.
Lord Brethor, head of the rangers who guard the land, and thus
unopposed leader of the Darthoniand, summoned these influential people
to a conference to discuss and debate various courses of action.

First Scenario – Having debated these points, Lord Brethor accepted
two proposals; a) an internal census to divine more precisely the
extent of settlement in the land, along with any other resources that
may be available. High among these are would be metals and cows
(leather), both of which could be used to build better arms and armor.
Meanwhile, our heroes are sent on a patrol south across the river -
the patrol has no real aim other than exploration.

The character set out across the river – they noted a trail leading to
cows, but lacked the skills to drive them. Meanwhile, they spied a
very large mesa to the south, and headed in that direction.

The mesa was very wide, with a trail spiraling up the side slowly.
About 2/3 of the way up the mesa, they found the remains of a dwarven
mine, complete with a forging area. However, the mine was very
obviously the lair of some beast, for dwarven skeletons were strewn
about and the mine held a foul stench. Moving on to the top of the
mesa, the players find a well, and see that the country for miles
around is simply rolling plains with few other features of note beyond
the river, woods, and mountains far, far off to the east.

Leaving the mountain, players destroyed a band of orcs nearby, and
watched a battle between very heavily armed orcs wearing black vs a
troll fighting alongside orcs in red. The heavily armed orcs were
victorious, and caused some concern to the players as they realize
that these orcs represent a very significant threat to their land.

Second Scenario – A month later the players return to the mine, which
has been occupied by 30 men and developed under the leadership of a
man named Naran. The men their miss their families, but are otherwise
very upbeat at their situation. They are slowly learning a new trade,
and have many ideas for how to proceed. The players suggest that they
focus on a) fortifying the approach up the hill, possibly with a
double gate and traps along the way, and b) in the long term, find a
way to drop the iron down the hill side rather than cart it down the
long way.

The players decide to explore in a different direction, and run into
one of their patrols along the way. The patrol informs them that it
found tracks close to the river, but did not see anything more. The
players investigate, find the tracks, and eventually go upriver to
ford near a (third) small town that was “discovered” by the recent
census. There the players interview the mayor, who complains that
they have sent repeated warnings or intrusions to the council at
woodhome (first town created with the aid of the dark elf), only to be
ignored.

While considering the implications of this news, the players head back
downriver, the players find busted-up rafts hidden in the trees, and
start working their way inland to find where the orcs have gone. They
discover the orcs, at least 50 in number and likely more, building a
strong fort, and patrolling regularly with strange, painted orcs
leading a pair of animals resembling large dogs crossed with an
alligator – dog bodies, but low to the ground, limbs slayed outword,
and much longer snout than a dog should have.

At this point the scenario ended – the players face a serious threat
to the survival of their kingdom. A strong force, fortified behind
their lines in the midst of their farmland, along with the nagging
issues regarding the woodhome council’s strange disregard for these
signs.

-Jeff

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