Blended Solo RPG (Session 2)
Session 2: In which things start to get really interesting.
OOC: What is the half-elf priestess's name?
"Gathering up ragged souls again, are we, Norenas?" someone asks, a tall shape that gathers out of the shadows as druids arrive to soothe Barbastus. Dressed in green with a bow at hand, he stands out as just about the most stereotypical half-elf ranger the amazons have ever seen. "It is good that the grove provides as well as it does in these otherwise dark times."
"Pharika's influence grows in the valley," Norenas says, gesturing back at the amazons. "These sisters are far from home and the strongest of them was sickened by the quag. A little kindness will not harm the grove, but the witholding of it could well have killed them."
"I've always had a soft spot for plucky underdogs," the ranger says, and as he crosses to stand with the priestess, their fingers intertwine in a gesture that is more tender and loving than friendly. When they part, he turns back to the amazons. "I'll leave you in Norenas's care for now. Remember that this is a sacred place. Treat it always as such."
"We will!" Thyia says excitedly, her smile fading a little as the ranger turns without a word and disappears into the trees.
"This way," Norenas says, leading the amazons further into the grove.
The grove itself is huge and verdant. Wild trees heavy with fruit sag over a meadow bristling with bushy herbs and grasses. The great reindeer Barbastus towers above it all, nibbling off the tops of tall conifers, but otherwise eating very little. Meals of fruit and nectar come in bowls made from the caps of massive acorns as the amazons bed down on soft grasses, and as the night falls, Alekto begins to play her flute.
Lysandra drifts off to sleep almost immediately, but for Ptolema, rest does not come easily. Her eyes are on the sky, and when the portent she's felt with a mounting sense of dread and urgency finally comes, she sucks in a deep breath. A light flares in the sky, a flashing, like a massive comet streaking through the stars, roaring and rumbling louder than even the largest, throatiest dragon Ptolema has ever heard.
The sound wakes the whole grove. Druids rush about with glowing pixies on their shoulders, desperately searching for the noise. Rising from his own rest, Barbastus answers the roar back with his own bugle-call, and when Norenas rushes back to where the amazons have bed down, her eyes are wide and terrified.
OOC: Is it a dragon?
OOC: Is it something worse?
(Oracle:) No, and. . .
"What was that?" Lysandra croaks, trying to get to her feet. Ptolema is there in an instant, trying to get her friend to stay seated, to rest.
"I don't know." Norenas says. "I've never heard anything like it."
"Where is it?" Ptolema asks, looking up as the ranger rushes in to stand with Norenas.
"Gone, but surely still nearby," the priestess says, reaching out and touching the tips of her fingers with the ranger.
OOC: Are Norenas and the ranger a thing?
"No beast of this land could make such a sound," the ranger says, looking nervously up toward the sky, toward the tops of the trees.
"Something sent by Pharika?" Alekto asks.
OOC: What is the ranger's name?
"Not here, not in this sacred place," Norenas responds. "Elovar, what have you seen?"
"Same as you, same as the others," he says, and the nervousness is clear in his voice. "Lights in the sky and a mighty roar. Ill omens, has to be, to make Barbastus bugle so."
But Ptolema stands, turning her anxious eyes toward the place where the omen was bound, somewhere in the woods ahead. Swallowing, she sets her jaw as firmly as she can, touches the wand at her belt.
"The gods always have a plan," she says, the words coming as firm as they are cryptic. Turning back, she looks to her sisters. "We are guests in this place, and hardened warriors. We are grateful for your hospitality. We will seek out the omen and return."
"Lysandra should stay," Norenas says, closing the distance between herself and the old veteran. "I will watch over her."
"Then I will go with you," Elovar tells Ptolema, readying his bow. "I know this grove and the lands beyond better than most."
"Then we could not ask for a better guide," Ptolema says, nodding once, firmly. "Sisters, Alekto and Thyia, pack your things. We leave immediately."
"Hydra," Ptolema breathes, suddenly very, very worried.