Friday, 8 February 2013

Dark Sun Marauders (Season 3, Chapter 1)

These posts are copies of my emails from our DnD group's downtime chatter.  The current adventure is a return to the world of Dark Sun.  In the previous seasons (the first run by me, the second run by Richard), the party were involved with hunting through Kalak's pyramid, confirming if the Sorcerer-King was truly dead, and retrieving the Orb of Dust. Whilst effort was taken to follow Dark Sun canon, there are undoubtedly bits where our story strays or contradicts stuff.  We're aware, and not playing to create new canon, but to have fun.  So, read on and enjoy!

Kulo, was angry.  He seemed to always be angry, but after returning from the pyramid, he had anger on top of anger, and his company became hard for the others to put up with.  By the following morning, he was gone, leaving their reclaimed Shom-warehouse without notice.  Not even Bundaberg had awoken to Kulo,'s gathering of his few belongings.

Kulo, didn't travel far; he headed directly for the one place he knew best in the city, and the one place he thought he could let off some steam without bringing undue attention to himself.  Whilst they had searched the markets the other day, he had heard rumours that some slaves had returned to the fighting pits.  Unlike Beren's insane allegiance to his former master, these gladiators returned, not to be slaves once more, but to excel at what they did best - at the only thing they knew how to do.  To fight.

Fortunately, the rumours were fruitful, and he found more than a few able bodies sparring back and forth in the arena.  There was talk about getting another competition running - one in which people chose to fight, that battles weren't to the death, and that victors won the spoils for themselves.  It could be a great way to earn a living, if organised well.  For now, no one had stepped forward to organise it - at least, no one that a majority of others agreed upon.  The hopeful contestants simply sparred, practised, and hoped to make enough to live by from those spectators who felt generous enough to part with some ceramic.

The group was welcoming enough to see Kulo,, though it was hard for him to work out who seemed the most timid: those that knew him from his gladiator days, or as Ulruun the Repugnant's bodyguard, or as one of those who had braved Kalak's pyramid, and returned with the Sorcerer-King's head.  Still, for every would-be gladiator who seemed to step gingerly around his shadow, another two simply saw a heavy-set half-giant, who wore viciously barbed links of chains around his shoulders. 

Kulo, didn't return to the warehouse over the next week, electing instead to sleep at the barracks and spend all his waking hours training with the other fighters.  Part of him just wanted a return to a simple life, but he hated that part, almost as much as he hated Beren's obedience to his old master.  The rest of him knew that there was a mess coming his way - coming all their way - and he wanted to be prepared for it.  He wanted as many people around him prepared for it.  So what if they thought they were merely training for fun and profit?  He was refining  their edge, just as they were sharpening him, making each other stronger, faster, and more equipped for repelling whatever Urik was sending their way. By the end of the week, his skill had improved such that he could add a few links to his chain.  He could now successfully, and repetitively, hit a target standing fifteen feet away from him, and had worked up quite a bit of skill in knocking and shifting people around the battlefield to where he wanted them.  He was impressed, and those that faced him also seemed to be wary of his lashing chains that could drag an escaping opponent to his feet, or could throw away an aggressive foe and leave them standing on their own. 

Kulo, was happy with his training, with the new tricks he had learnt and mastered...but that happiness was more of a reluctant acceptance, compared with the anger that still stewed within him.  There was work that needed to be done, further preparations that needed to be made, and stolen items that needed to be retrieved.  And so it was, after a week long absence, that Kulo, finally returned to the warehouse, to his son Kuoroar!, and to the others that he had fought alongside.  Hopefully, they had some ideas as to just what they would do next.

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