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Bêthberry 03-11-2003 11:28 AM

Betrayal of Trust: Discussion Thread
Palando of the blue robe and The Squatter of Amon Rûdh invite you to play their game, Betrayal of Trust.

Story Back ground:

The best way to describe this proposal is to start with my first entry and then describe the overall premise of the adventure and the rest of the proposal details.

First post:

Pain lanced through Halasan's shoulder as he scrambled up the craggy bluff overshadowing the path below, warm blood seeping through his torn jerkin as crude stitches ruptured under the strain. Fear drove him, lending him
strength to ignore the pain until he mounted the rock's grassy summit.

Rolling onto his back, Halasan closed his eyes in an attempt to control his nausea. But exhaustion and blood-loss conquered and with a final sigh his mind fell away into unconsciousness.


Halasan awoke to a frozen wind and a cold moon hanging high in the sky. Shadowy clouds loomed overhead; backlit by the moon's pale, waxen glow. As he sat up the last dying rays of twilight flowed down the Nan Curunir into
the gap of Rohan, giving him a fading glimpse across the West Emnet into the
lands of the Riddermark. He stood slowly, fearful of opening the wound in his shoulder further, and watched until all the light had fled into the west, leaving only the moon to light the way to his destination.

His gaze drifted northward now, until he could see the Fangorn forest covering the horizon like a carpet of tall lichen. Memories of his homeland in Mirkwood flooded in unchecked. Memories he had been trying to suppress;
The screams of his dying wife, the hungry fire consuming all he had built, the betrayal of his friend and finally the chase, the beginning of his journey that had led him to this point, alone on a hill, in a land he did
not know, searching for someone he knew in his heart was dead. Tears can unbidden to his eyes and as the night deepened he remembered. Remembered allthat he had tried to forget of the last few weeks...


The morning sun rose majestically over the crest of the Emyn Muil; like a great tide it flowed across the lands of Rohan, spreading warmth and chasing away the icy dawn frost before it. Halasan stirred. He could not say when sleep had claimed him, but as he sat up and let the morning warmth surround him he could sense that it had been a more wholesome slumber than since... No. He would not think on that right now. Determined to at least start the morning with less maudlin thoughts he rose to greet the day.

With the fear abated hunger now clawed at him, tightening in his stomach like a cramp. How long had it been since he had eaten? He had no food in his pack, only a metal box, half full with dried tinder, a flint stick, a steel
gutting knife and some bay leaves. He knew he did not have the strength or tools left to catch a decent hare or deer. Instead he conserved his energy and walked slowly down the mound, careful to place his feet on soft,
yielding ground, and he soon found a narrow hole that he recognised. Slowly he pushed his arm in, sliding it inch by inch until his hand came upon a thin, fleshy tail. Pinching it firmly he pulled hard, swung his arm out and
round in a single fluid motion and smashed the creature down on a nearby rock. With a crunch the creature died. It was a brown rat, a hands span in length from head to tail. It would be enough.

Collecting some small twigs and branches Halasan quickly got the fire burning, though it had taken the last of his tinder in the damp air. After burning the rat's fur and scraping it off he threw the rodent on the edge of the fire to cook slowly before sitting on a small boulder nearby. Eventually the rat was done and the stench of burning meat assailed his nostrils, but it did not trouble him as he bit into the flesh. At least the taste was good!

A sound emanating from behind the hillock he had hidden on the previous night startled him suddenly. He turned, ready for the end expecting another band of orcs to come to finish him off. But it was not a fell creature, nor was it any of the cursed easterlings that had pursued him for so long. But a horse; a beautiful mottled brown mare, tall and proud with a silky oak coloured mane that flowed down its neck like a waterfall.

The beast stopped just out of reach. "Begone fair oakenmane, I have nothing here that I can share with you save my company."

Snorting, the horse swung its head and moved closer, nuzzling Halasan's neck. He laughed, the sound harsh and unfamiliar. "Well you're a friendly one! Tell me friend, where is your master?"

The horse swung his head again and this time tucked his head under Halasan's arm. Patting the beast's neck he began to search for a brand, but could find none. Surely a horse of this quality was hand reared? An idea formed
quickly in his mind, he knew it was born of desperation, but it seemed his only chance. Tightening his pack Halasan swung over onto the horses back in elven fashion. Surprisingly the horse remained steady and calm. Surely hand reared! He thought as he shifted into a comfortable position. His mind made,
Halasan yelled to the horse.

"Nornoro oakenmane, nornoro an Edoras!"

At his calling Oakenmane, as it was hence named, reared its front legs, turned and started west at a gallop. Hope was returned again to his troubled heart, in a form most unexpected, and the rising sun warmed body and spirit as he rode.

By the fall of evening Halasan had reached a town that rose upon a tall green hill above the endless rolling valleys. It was encircled by a high wooden palisade; rooftops could be seen collected in groups within and higher still at its centre stood a great building of stone.
A small river flowed by the base of the hill, which he forded before dismounting and walking to the gate. Two guards stood barring his way,
both clad in chain shirts and helms, tall spears in their left hands glinting in the evenlight as they rested lightly upon the sodden ground.

"Halt, stranger," cried the first, who stood to Halasan's left. "Who travels here at such speed upon a steed of Rohan, dressed as an outlander?"

Halasan smiled as he drew closer. "Just a traveller in search of some hot food and an Inn." He paused, stopping before them. "And the use of a good seamstress if I may. I have coin!"

The second guard nodded and smiled. He eyed the stranger with an appraising look; standing at about five and a half feet, he looked to be middle aged with tufted light brown hair that greyed slightly at the temples. Thick eyebrows framed deep-set, inky black eyes and his skin was pallid and pulled tight against his skull. For clothing he wore a simple leather jerkin,
belted at the waist, that hung over loose trousers and dark boots. A heavy, dark blue travelling cloak was draped over his shoulders, tied by a plain silver clasp. He bore no weapon, but the wound on the stranger's shoulder looked troubling. For a moment the second guard looked away in thought, before looking back to address Halasan.

"The White Horse Inn would suit your needs. Bethberry, the innkeeper, knows everyone in the town and would happily help, for the right coin that is!"

Halasan nodded and smiled. "Thank you" he said, before making his way between the guards. Suddenly the first guard raised his hand again to block the way.

"Tell me stranger, how come you by that wound, and this fine beast?"

Halasan paused before replying, the cold fear seeping back into his heart.
The only answer that came to mind was the truth, so he spoke it. Hoping that again luck would favour him this day.

"I stumbled upon a raiding party of some orc-kin while skirting the Fangorn
forest. I managed to sting a couple, though my blade was lost, and I took this as a reply before I could escape." He pointed to the deep cut in his shoulder. " Strong, orcs are, but not fast! I lost them by flitting in and
out of the woods before hiding on high ground." He paused. "As for this wonderful creature?" He moved his hand to rest on the horse's neck. "I know not. I woke this morning to find it by me. It would not leave and seemed happy to bear me here, for which I am most thankful." Halasan stroked its neck, an action which gained an approving whinny and nod from the horse.

"Interesting, for this is a beast of the free herds!" Halasan waited for the accusation, but none came. The guards voice remained calm. "For some reason it has chosen you, stranger. That is a rare gift. Treat it well."

Halasan nodded and walked into the town, passing many wooden houses and shops before finally reaching a tall, timber framed building crowned in thatching. A wooden sign protruding from its front bore a picture of a
grand white horse and the words "The White Horse Inn."

Attached to its left was a small stable. He entered and the horse was gently led to a stall by the stable hand. Resolving to find a name for the animal, he turned, walked back and entered the Inn.

Instantly a wall of noise, and a pungent air heavy with unfamiliar smells
assailed him. The main bar was busy, filled with an exotic mix of races.
Nodding with a friendly smile to any that looked his way Halasan walked
to the high bar. Bottles and barrels mingled freely along the back shelves
and here the smell of malt and honey was so thick he could almost taste it!

A woman approached him from behind the bar, her face kindly but with eyes
strong and clear.

"Greetings friend and welcome to the White Horse. What can I get you?"
Halasan smiled, pointed to a bottle of mead standing half empty close by
mumbled a thank you when the bottle was brought over and a glass filled for

He smiled again, sat and relaxed for the first time in days.

* * * * * *


Ok, now you have read that, I will explain further. Halasan was a homestead
lord in southeast mirkwood, as well as a strict but kind husband and father
of three, until a few weeks ago when his old Friend Kiatus convinced him to
go on an extended hunt with his men and two sons into the southern border
where a remnant group of orcs were believed to have made camp. But Halasan
found nothing and returned home earlier than expected to find his homestead
under attack by an easterling nomad tribe, the buildings put to the flame.
The servants, women folk and children already died or dying in the flames.
The echo of his dying wife's scream driving him to madness and so he called
his men to attack. But the easterlings were greater in number and skill and
all were slaughtered, including his sons, and only Halasan escaped by being
knocked unconscious. But he awoke as the raiders were leaving and so he
followed them back to their camp. Waiting for the cover of night he crept
into the camp and into the leaders tent. He awoke the leader and questioned
him. The leader explained that he had done a deal with Kiatus, selling
Halasan's homestead out for money. He also explained that Kiatus had taken
Halasan's young daughter, Catrina, as part of the bargain. Furious Halasan
kills the leader and escapes, though he is seen and pursued. He retraces
Kiatus' steps to his home and finds out that he has fled to relatives in
Rohan. The chase begins...

However, there is a twist. That is only what Halasan believes happened. In
truth Catrina and Kiatus had become
lovers and Kiatus hatched a plan to get money so that
they could run away together. But neither of them wanted anyone to die!
Stricken with grief and remorse the two tragic figures have fled to try
to terms with what they have done.

So the tragic couple flee from their own mistake, pursued by Halasan with
only the desire to save his daughter and kill Kiatus, who in turn is
by Easterling assassins out for revenge for Halasan's killing of their

Starting Location:

The intro will lead the reader to Edoras, and to the White horse where the
main characters will meet.

Likely destination:

The betrayers will flee south from Rohan through Gondor and if they are not
caught before then the final show down will be in Pelargir.


Early in the fourth age.

Joining the game will be by audition and invitation only with Bethberry helping in the selection
process. And Squatter is co-running the adventure to ensure no interruptions.


Halasan The middle aged lord driven by revenge and the search for
daughter. Played by Palando

Kiatus Halasan's old friend, lover of Catrina and the betrayer.
Catrina The young daughter of Halasan who's own games have left
with the blood of many, including her mother and brothers on her hands.

It is believed that Bethberry will play the demanding roles of both lovers
in their attempts to flee Halasan.

Squatter will have a character who will join Halasan in the white horse.

Esty has also shown an interest.

I will be looking for a total 6 or 7 players so with Palando, Squatter,
Bethberry and Esty that leaves room for another 2 or 3 contributors. I am
happy to take on Rohan regulars as long as they have a proven record of
quality posts.

Types of characters wanted

This is not a high fantasy romp but a dark journey where the boundaries of
good and evil are blurred. A combination of Tolkien's beautiful locations
contrasting with complex, Gemmell style characters. They don't have to be
over pretentious characters with 100 pages of background, just believable.
(i.e. not just defined by any magic items that they wield)

Oh yes, and any relatives of Aragorn, legolas, Gimli, or missing members of
the Istari should not apply, there are far more heroic adventures they
be on...

Time scale

I want this to be a well paced piece with a steady two or three (max) posts a week. Story is expected to play itself out for two months with a conclusion in mid May. (It will NOT go on later as I will be getting married
and then going off with wife and kids for a while to recover.

Please send character descriptions and first posts to Palando of the blue robe via PM. The game will start once slots are filled with March 17th being the latest start point.

Ransom 03-12-2003 07:23 AM

Hello all-

I've sent the profile/first post to Palando, and he's told me to introduce myself here. Here goes nothing. [img]smilies/smile.gif[/img]

Lieutenant Azariah Alamax of the Citadel Guard
Race/Allegiance: Human/Gondor
Age: 30
Height: 6’ 3”
Hair color: Black. Usually close-cropped
Eye color: Grey.
Notable possessions: Partial plate mail. Open faced helm. Bastard sword named Nienna’s Tear. Shield. Main gauche. Long spear.

The coronation of King Elessar heralded significant changes for the Gondorian government. While there were still enemies who would wish for the downfall of Gondor, the country no longer needed to remain on war footing year round. Troops who once patrolled the western shore of the Anduin were redeployed to the frontiers or set to work healing the scars hundreds of years of war have left on the countryside. No one institution was more affected than the Citadel Guard. Under the Stewards, the Guard had spent the vast majority of its resources manning the White Tower and guarding the Steward.

However, King Elessar no longer needed to contend with the power of Mordor on a daily basis. The Watch was split into two groups. One, the King’s Guard, would serve as shock troops on the battlefield during times of war and guard the Citadel and the royal family during times of peace. The second, the King’s Hands, were used as ambassadors and messengers, representing the King everywhere from the garrisons along the southern border to the Lonely Mountain.

The first of five children, Azariah Alamax was born on a farm on the border of the Grey Woods, to the north of Gondor. His parents were skilled farmers, and their lands produced more than enough money for the large family to live comfortably. His father had been a member of the Hosts of Gondor in his youth, and there was no doubt that at least one of the sons would enter the service of the White Tower. Azariah did not seem to fit his father’s dreams. While he was tall and fairly well muscled, he was far more interested in thinking and reading than weapons. Still, not wanting to disappoint his parents, he joined the military at the age of fourteen.

His disposition toward logic and thinking helped him excel on the battlefield, and he was promoted fairly quickly. Much to his parent’s surprise and joy, he bore the rank of sergeant-at-arms when he briefly returned home at the age of seventeen. Azariah fought in most of King Elessar’s major offensives, leading his men against the Easterlings and the men of Harad. Shortly after his twentieth birthday, Azariah’s unit took massive casualties defending their king. On one of his many wars against Harad, King Elessar had deployed his armies without adequate knowledge of his enemy’s intentions. The enemy attack smashed through a weak section of the line and came within bowshot of the King. Azariah’s unit fought a costly delaying action until reinforcements arrived. Two thirds of the unit was either wounded or dead, and it’s commanding officer, Azariah, was badly wounded.

Impressed by his tenacious defense, King Elessar promoted Azariah to the Citadel Guard in the field hospital after the battle. As with all new members, Azariah spent three more years campaigning with the king, eventually re-earning the rank of sergeant-at-arms. On his twenty-third birthday, Azariah applied for and was granted a transfer to the King’s Hands. His sharp mind, long used to tactics and war craft, learned the tasks require of him relatively quickly. While the next seven years were mainly spent traveling through Gondor and Rohan, he did join his king on several campaigns, earning a promotion to Lieutenant at the age of twenty-nine.

Having proved himself trustworthy early in his career, Azariah has been carrying verbal messages for King Elessar for a few years. As such, he has developed an extremely keen memory. His other area of service is as an observer, listening for any useful information in the towns and courts he has visited. Azariah has a tendency to conserve words, weaving an aura of simpleton to mask his less honorable jobs. Still, he has not forgotten his child hood and tries to keep as true to his parent’s ethics as possible.

Elenna Ethynian
Race/Allegiance: Human/Rohan
Age: 18
Height: 5’ 3”
Hair color: Blond
Eye color: Gray
Notable possessions: Bow and arrows. Knife. Broad Sword.

Elenna had the unique experience of growing up in one of the few cities of Rohan. While most of her countrymen lived in small villages or kept herds of cattle and sheep, her father was one of the many weapon smiths King Eomer employed to arm his men. Her mother was one of the Gondorian maids Queen Lothiriel had brought with her after her marriage to the king. While certainly not stupid, little Elenna had learned to speak much later than her peers. She grew up in the halls of the Golden Hall, running errands for her mother and for the Queen.

In the habit of his country, Elenna received some training with weapons as she matured. She proved to be fairly competent with the bow, learning to hunt the deer that occasionally ventured near Edoras. However, perhaps due to her lack of height and willowy frame, her swordsmanship left much to be desired. Her lack of skill only worsened after her twelfth birthday, when she caught a mild case of tuberculosis. It was during this period that she formed a friendship with the lonely and aged herbalist. After a year of convalescence, she became his apprentice.

Partially because of her late acquisition of language skills and her recent illness, Elenna had become quite withdrawn. Her work at the herbalist’s store forced her to deal with the people around her. While she was fond of most of the store’s patrons, Elenna loved the few children that visited the store, occasionally giving them small treats. Her love for children did not go unnoticed, and the next time Eowyn visited her brother Elenna was given the task of watching the children. Perhaps because she was closest to their size, the children developed a friendship with their nurse during their stay.

While she is somewhat introverted, Elenna is usually polite and friendly to anyone who shows some interest in conversation. Still, she is keenly aware of her mixed heritage. Despite her experience with hunting, most of her education has been in domestic skills. The only exception is her knowledge of herb lore, a sphere of knowledge in which she has mastered. Her upbringing in Rohan has sheltered her from some of the darker aspects of human nature.


[ March 12, 2003: Message edited by: Ransom ]

Palando 03-12-2003 07:26 AM

Greetings all,

Well its been a good response so far. At this point we have a confirmed cast of:

Bethberry: Kiatus and Catrina.
Palando: Halasan.
Squatter: Haleg the woodsman.
Ransom: Elenna and Azariah.
Esty: to be confirmed

For those above so far please feel free to post your welcomes and descriptions here.

peace to all.

Palando of the blue robe

Ransom 03-12-2003 07:53 AM

Two questions for the wiser Tolkein scholors. [img]smilies/smile.gif[/img]

1) Would there be modern day diseases in Middle Earth? E.G. smallpox and TB?

2) Did the people of Gondor and Rohan intermarry?


Palando 03-12-2003 10:11 AM

Hi Ransom,

Interesting questions…

Firstly TB:

Yes, you could say that it existed as it has been known about for thousands of years, though not by that name. There is a strong belief that it was first known in ancient Greece. Hippocrates described a common illness that he called "phthisis", which is now believed to be TB. Its best name, and that which is used most in fantasy/historic writing is "consumption" or "White Plague". Characters suffering from it usually fall slowly into ill health; coughing up blood, becoming pallid and distant, before dying painfully… Nice!!!

Secondly small pox:

Same here really in that it has been round forever as far as I know. If you wanted to write this into a character then the following should help: "The eruption of the Small-Pox is preceded by a continued fever, pain in the back, itching in the nose, and terrors in sleep. These are the more peculiar symptoms of its approach, especially a pain in the back, with fever; then also a pricking which the patient feels all over his body; a fullness of the face, which at times goes and comes; an inflamed colour, and vehement redness in both the cheeks; a redness of both the eyes; a heaviness of the whole body; great uneasiness, the symptoms of which are stretching and yawning; a pain in the throat and chest, with a slight difficulty in breathing, and cough; voice; pain and heaviness of the head; inquietude, distress of mind, nausea, and anxiety; heat of the whole body, an inflamed colour, and shining redness, and especially and intense redness of the gums.”

Some good descriptive opportunities there if you wanted a character to suffer from one. (or both… aghh poor bugger!)

On the question of Gondor-Rohan relationships. Any is possible, and probably not frowned upon either due to their close social and political links.

Hope this helps.

Palando of the blue robe

Ransom 03-12-2003 10:20 AM

Fun *fun* Fun *fun*

My dark little mind is begining to ponder the possibilities. Thank you very much for the information.


Aylwen Dreamsong 03-12-2003 06:13 PM

Hola everyone!

I've already checked with Palando, and he's approved of my character(s). So, here I am! The baddies...the assassins.

Name: Whisper
Age: 19
Race: Man (Female)

Physical Appearance: Whisper’s icy grey eyes accompany proudly arched eyebrows, a long, straight nose, and a stubborn chin. Her face is often set in a stern or determined expression. Whisper’s long, unruly black curls fall down her shoulders decorated with colorful threads/strings. Her hair lacks any sign that the tresses were once, in fact, brown. Her skin is a tan-brown color from both her heritage and from spending a great deal of time in the sun. She is short and strong.

History: Growing up near the Sea of Rhûn, Whisper lived with her brother until he was killed just before her fourteenth birthday. To earn money Whisper would carry messages throughout Rhovanion. One day, someone offered her a large sum of money if she would steal his neighbor’s prized sword, and Whisper agreed. After that, Whisper did a great deal of thieving for a few shady characters. When she was fifteen, one of her only friends taught her how to use the daggers, but that was the extent of her fighting skills. That friend also introduced Whisper to the life of an assassin. Whisper went on several escapades with this friend that involved killing some semi-powerful ruler for a certain amount of money, along with her friend Joal. Whisper loved Joal as a brother, and the two were the best of friends.

So Whisper became a well-known (at least to the more evil of kinds in Middle-Earth) assassin. She’d do the killing for a bit of money, ale, and bread. Whisper’s true name was once Tavari, but her friend had nicknamed her Whisper for her stealth and cunning, silent nature while on the job. Moving about in the dark and slipping in and out of places unnoticed came easily to Whisper. In truth, Whisper cared more to voice her opinions, but being an assassin was for the money.

Whisper's mood is always changing and her mindset is almost never exactly the same way twice. She can go easily from sweet and charming to an unimaginable rage in a matter of minutes. The way her temper and persona changes and extinguishes so suddenly, one can never tell what to expect from her. In general though, Whisper does her best to be charming and amiable. However, the only person she ever kept friendships with was her companion Joal.

Motivation: Whisper is after Halasan, as she was paid by the people of the accused group of roaming Easterlings to kill Halasan.

Special Features: Whisper carries only a dagger and a wooden staff. The staff has intricately carven designs and scripts in the wood. The dagger is like any other, and it’s sheath is inlaid with gold and gems; Whisper had stolen it from the leader of a southron tribe.

And introducing,

Name: Joal
Age: 13
Race: Man

Physical Appearance: Strawberry-blond curls are cropped short and close to Joal’s head, looking a bit strange compared to his dark, swarthy face. He has the dark hazel eyes of his family line, which appear darker when not in direct light. Whisper is always teasing him about his ears, as they’re disproportionate to the rest of his facial features. Still growing at 5’8, Joal feels unusually tall and his thin build does not help in the slightest. Joal’s feet are growing as well, and he and Whisper have stolen more than five new pairs of shoes for the boy. Joal often feels clumsy and hopes he ‘grows’ out of it soon.

History: Joal was born in Near Harad, his father leaving his mother to care for the child alone. His mother did her best to earn money for the child, and worked long hours in bars and inns throughout the eastern parts of Middle-Earth. When Joal was three, his mother died after having been feverishly sick in southeast Rhûn. Joal became adopted by a rich house-lord of Rhûn, who actually considered Joal more of a servant than an adopted son.

In attempts to get back onto his own feet, Joal began running errands for the other men in Rhûn who were willing to pay. Joal, in such a line of business, soon began to do stealing runs and eventually ‘graduated’ to assassinating for hire. It paid well, and that was all Joal was looking for.

One ‘mission’, the man who had hired Joal had also paid a girl named Tavari to go along with Joal. She was not as experienced in such trips, and Joal liked the girl, so he helped her out a bit. He taught her how to use his favorite weapon: daggers. The two became fast friends, and partners in crime. They split the money in all their further jobs and went everywhere together. Joal gave Tavari her nickname that forever stuck with her, and from then she was Whisper, despite her outgoing, talkative nature outside of the job.

Joal is more introvert than Whisper, and though he tries to be quiet and less clumsy with his awkward body, he finds it easier to keep his mouth shut. Still, Joal is unhappily not used to being the center of attention, but desperately wants to be. He can be incredibly annoying in a loyal sort of way by following people around in attempt to get noticed. Joal jumps into things head-first without first reviewing the consequences, which usually end him up in bad situations. Joal carries only his daggers and a length of rope.


[ May 26, 2003: Message edited by: Aylwen Dreamsong ]

Estelyn Telcontar 03-13-2003 02:07 AM

I will be playing a character in a brief cameo role at the beginning of this RPG. Here she is:

Annawyn is a seamstress who lives in Edoras. She and the maidens who work for her do exquisite sewing as well as repairs, so her shop is well-known to most of the inhabitants of the city. She is of medium height and stature, has hair the colour of dark honey, usually worn in a thick braid down her back, though a few unruly curls escape around her face to belie the severe look. Her blue-grey eyes gaze thoughtfully, for the most part, yet attentive observers can see flickers of amusement, even flashes of anger occasionally.

She is no longer young, as the silver strands in her hair testify, and seems to have lived and worked in the same place all her life, but older customers sometimes whisper about journeys that she made long ago, adventures that are all the more mysterious because she never speaks of them herself. Those who come to her find her to be a sympathetic listener, with the ability to see below the surface of persons and events, and those who ask for it receive advice worth taking to heart.

She lives in a private room at the back of her shop, where she keeps her most prized possession, a small harp, strangely and beautifully fashioned. Those of her apprentices who are orphaned or otherwise homeless live in rooms above the shop and can often hear her playing and singing softly in the evenings. Sometimes, though, visitors come after dark, speaking with Annawyn in such low voices that not even the most curious of the maidens can understand the words. And sometimes she quietly disappears for hours, coming back only in time to open the shop in the morning.

The Squatter of Amon Rûdh 03-13-2003 07:28 AM

Hullo everyone, and welcome to the game. I appear to be fashionably late for a quest that I'm supposed to be co-hosting, but I promise a proper character introduction soon, hopefully this evening. In the meantime here is a description of the wandering axeman for your delectation.

My character is Haleg. "The Woodsman" ("The Woodsman of Hell" in full) is a nom de guerre rather than a title, as he's no more a woodsman than he is a farmer. Haleg was orphaned by border raiders when he was still a boy, escaping with only a few odds and ends tied in a bundle to his father's axe, which he salvaged from the thick of the fighting. Only narrowly escaping with his life, wounded and exhausted, he was taken in against all hope and nursed back to health. Thanks to his guardian's help he was eventually able to join the household of a land-holding warrior, rising high in his service through skill and loyalty, although his poor head for large-scale strategy and lack of self-control kept him from the top rank. When his liege lord and ring-giver was assassinated at the hands of a poisoner and his place taken by a scheming lieutenant Haleg took swift and brutal revenge. The tale of this is not for the squeamish, and is not told often or to many. Since the two men on whom he carried out his arbitrary sentence were influential members of the household, and since he observed no true law in acting thus, he has been cast out and now makes his living selling his axe to the highest bidder. He will encounter Halasan by chance in an inn.

Haleg carries two main weapons. The first of these is the sword of his former lord, stolen from the usurper along with the hand that sought to wield it. Haleg has no skill with this whatsoever and carries it in adherence to a tradition that, should the line of father to son be broken, the sword must pass to a warrior of unusual merit. Haleg seeks this man, in the hope of passing on the beautifully-worked blade to one worthy of it.

His other weapon, and that with which he excels, is the great war-axe, Durithil. This is an heirloom of his house, the only one that remains, and was made for his great-grandfather in the Iron Hills. Its blade is of black steel, inlaid with a tracery of fine silver, in which the weapon's name in Daeron's runes forms part of a stylised decorative design. The tradition in Haleg's family was that the eldest son's hand was laid on the haft in the hour of his birth to symbolise future ownership, and it grieves him that there is no-one left to whom he may pass it when he dies. He risked his life to save this weapon from his father's killers, and is very wary of allowing others near it, as it is the most valuable thing that he owns.

Haleg is named after one of Túrin's guardians, and his father brought him up on tales of Turambar and his sire. Húrin Thalion is a character whom Haleg particularly admires, and he has been known to quote extensively from the lays of his life, often to bleak effect.

Haleg is not a cheerful man, although he does have a certain rough good humour about him. He has no goal or direction beyond passing on the sword and keeping himself alive; he is prone to long and morose silences and his anger when roused is terrible to behold, breaking as it does the bounds of reason. His is a nickname well earned, for his enemies receive no mercy. Few whom he has defeated still live other than the two who murdered his lord, for whom death would be a blessing. His vindictive and merciless pursuit of those who wrong him is matched only by his loyalty to comrades-in-arms; there are few whom he would account his friends.

Palando 03-13-2003 11:35 AM

Welcome one and all and thank you for your applications to the game.

As this story is of a limited time frame, and also because this will be the first rpg that I have run on the downs, I am closing the doors on submissions now!

If any other players would like to make cameo submissions like Estelyn then please PM with your ideas.

Here is the final starting list:

Palando: Halasan Description given First post ready
Squatter: Haleg Description given
Ransom: Elenna and Azariah Description given First post ready
Aylwen: Whisper and Joal Description given First post ready
Adanedhel: Tunar Estomer Description given
Bethberry: Catrina and Kiatus Description given
Estelyn: Annawyn Description Given

I will be opening the rpg story on Monday with the initial order being:

1) Palando Halasan intro (already posted)
2) Ransom Intro in WH
3) Squatter Intro (in WH move to see Annawyn)
4) Estelyn cameo one
5) Aylwen (intro the assassins)
6) Adanedhel (move to blacksmith)
7) Bethberry (first intro of the tragic lovers)
8) Estelyn cameo two
9) Palando (move the story forward)

After that we will debate the order through the discussion thread.

Please do not include your signature in your posts to the rpg.

Lets get ready……

Palando of the blue robe

Adanedhel 03-14-2003 12:31 AM


Thank you to Palando for allowing me to join this very interesting and different role play. I will be playing a black smith of Edoras who joins the company on their quest.

Name: Tunar Estomer
Race/Allegiance: Man/Rohirrim
Age: 30
Height: 6ft 1"
Weapons: War axe, long sword
Transport/s: Horse
Bio: Tunar had lived his whole life in Edoras, taking over his father's business and becoming one of the few blacksmiths in Edoras. His father and mother having both been born in Edoras, his father a blacksmith just like his father before him and so on down the line it went. It was the same for his mother except her family's trade was seamstry and so his family had lived for generations in Edoras.

Tunar was a rather large fellow, hours of bending iron into horse shoes and every now and again a sword or some sort of armour for the soldiers of the Riddermark. Tunar didn't like killing or anything of the sort, though he did have a sword and an axe which his father had given him just before he died. The sword and axe lay covered in dust in his home behind the smithy over his mantle piece, he often looked at them despising such weapons of pain and destruction.

Whenever he wasn't in the smithy he would be either with his wife Alydda helping to raise they're three troublesome boys, Daennyn, Erod and the youngest Erol, or in the local Inn, the White Horse. He didn't drink as he found it affected his work as he painful found out one time, instead rathering to sit and talk to the other men of the city, catching up on current events in the region and in the city itself.

Tunar is of a medium height, 6 foot 1 inch, and of a large build owing to his hours in the smith pounding hot iron. He has longish black hair, streaks of grey appearing more to do with the stress caused by his young boys other than the effects of age. His hair is thick and he is forever brushing it out of his eyes as it has grown long and he has grown lax in cutting it despite the insistence of his wife.
When his hair isn't in his eyes from under his dark eyebrows peer his dark green eyes, thoughtful wells of green that always made him look serious. He rarely spoke, preferring to keep his piece and only talking or adding to a conversation after he had throughly thought through what he was going to say and even then it would only be a few words, no more. He was well respected in the town, known as a man of sense and skill with a hammer in his smithy. He is a kindly man loving the company of his family and spending time with his young boys and his wife. He is not prone to anger, in fact he is quite the opposite, he very rarely gets angry, not even at his troublesome boys who are forever playing practical jokes in the smithy and throughout the town.

I know you all will not have seen my role play before but I assure you I have before and still do so on a regular basis at another site. I hope to enjoy this role play and am looking forward to role playing with you all.


Thank you,


[ March 14, 2003: Message edited by: Adanedhel ]

Bêthberry 03-15-2003 04:41 PM

Hello Palando, Squatter, and Estelyn. It is great to see Aylwen, Ransom and Adanedhel here too! Thanks for accepting me into the game, Palando and accepting my interpretation of the characters.

My characters will be Catrina and Kiatus. Here are their descriptions:


Fetted and petted throughout her short life, Catrina, just 17, is intelligent and strong willed but irresponsible and undisciplined. She has been raised in a somewhat bewildering way, indulgently but with restrictions. Her father delighted in showering her with small presents of pretty dresses and dolls and pets, as reward for her cleverness and talents and appearance, yet she not has learnt how to handle disappointment, frustration, or even boredom. Clever and charming, she often has got her own way by appealing to her father over her mother and has spent more time with him than with her mother. She has little aptitude for the traditional kinds of labour most often done by women such as the hand sewing of clothes, churning of butter, baking of bread, and the growing and harvesting of crops; in fact, these chores are often done by her younger brothers in concert with her mother, who has schooled Catrina in nothing much other than to find a wealthy husband as she has done in marrying a landowner. Yet the thought of Catrina managing or running the homestead, of bartering or negotiating with the neighbouring homesteaders is a ridiculous impossibility to her father who, when he is not in the mood to be entertained, usually dismisses her to go play. He has not understood that she is becoming an adult and sees only the little girl. Her intelligence has no outlet and her boredom causes her to yearn for action and activity beyond the limited means of the homestead. At heart she has a lack of positive self-image because she has never really done anything and is not truly sure where she wants to be. As a result, she is a rebellious risk-taker who is not aware of how to handle consequences.


Kiatus is much older than Catrina, by a good twelve years or more. He is not a very steady or principled man, preferring to work the system by manipulating it rather than by being a legitimate contributor to it and so, while he is undoubtedly clever, is more shrewd than wise. Yet he is not evil or viscious, really just lazy or lacking strong motivation. He has worked occasionally for Halasan on the homestead and so has gained a close knowledge of the family and free access to the home, which he has used to establish a clandestine relationship with Catrina, sensing her boredom and enjoying the opportunity to appear to her as an important man. He is attractive in a dangerous sort of way to an inexperienced girl, for whom he appears charming and thrilling, but women see through him rather quickly. (Thus the attraction for him of an adolescent--he does not have to handle a woman's maturity.) He met Halasan at the local Inn. Indeed, they are the kind of 'hail buddy, well met' sort of boon companions rather than intimate friends. He also associates surreptitiously or quietly with the more unsavory characters in the community and this gives him a sort of cachet with Catrina, who yearns to see the world beyond the homestead.

Well, let the game begin!


Palando 03-17-2003 02:14 AM

Welcome to the dawn of a new age...

Only kidding, well the RPG thread is now open so please start your engines ladies and gentlemen.

Palando of the blue robe

Palando 03-17-2003 05:15 PM

Great start Ransom and Squatter, your pick up of Halasans character was scarily quick, and well done!

Ok, Esty next...

Estelyn Telcontar 03-17-2003 05:28 PM

First thing in the morning...

Palando 03-18-2003 02:31 AM

Hi Esty, and sorry. I just remembered that I was going to give you details of what your character knows...

Well, 4 days ago a middle aged man and a young woman came into town together to stay at the white horse. You remember them because they were argueing continually and they both seemed desperate and distressed.

They met someone at the WH and then went to see the blacksmith, Tunar Estomer before leaving the town in a rush.

Obviously this we will be the first time Halasan has any indication that his daughter is travelling willingly, though he may rationalise it that she is too scared to run.

Anyway, how you play that is up to you. You may want to leave some of the details until your second post, maybe remembering more after the initial conversation.

Adanedhel: When it is time for your post and Halasan and Haleg come visiting you will remember that a couple came in with Deriath, a merchant you know who has set up a small trading post by the merging of the Snowbourn and Entwash rivers.

The man purchased a particularly fine rapier from you before heading out. Any other details I will leave for you to create.

Cheers all

Palando of the blue robe

Palando 03-18-2003 05:12 AM

Excellent posts so far but looks like I am gonna need to change the schedule a bit to keep the flow.

Aylwen: you do your assassins intro next.
Then I will do another short post for Halasan taking him through the night to breakfast. I will interact with Elenna and Azariah and then taking him back to Annawyn for Estelyn's second post and then move to Adanedhel for her first post for Tunar.

so it will now go

Aylwen - assassin intro
Palando - troubled sleep through to morning meeting
Estelyn - giving out of help and leading to Tunar
Adanedhel - Tunar intro and details of lover journey to Deriath's trading post.

Then hopefully

Bethberry - intro of tragic lovers
Ransom - get Elenna and Azariah involved in journey.
Palando - Moving the story out of Edoras.

that will do for now and wil probably be subject to more changes but there you go...

Palando of the blue robe

Palando 03-19-2003 01:19 PM

Many thanks from all of us for your cameo character Annawyn. I'm gonna have to pop in to the white horse more to see her lovely smile again.

Tunar next... Looking good everyone.

all the best

Palando of the blue robe

Palando 03-22-2003 01:23 AM

Ok, we are ready now for someone to finally get the characters together and out of town. Any volunteers? Squatter or Adanedhel would be my choice. Post here if you want to do it.

Bethberry: Looking forward to your first post which can come anytime now, hopefully before the main group get to Deriath.

As a note: please don’t take the main group more than a day out from Edoras as Aylwen will need to do her next post then.

Happy scribbling.

Palando of the blue robe

Adanedhel 03-25-2003 03:01 AM


I have something prepared, I have been busy thanks to school but I have a post ready to get the characters moving...

Thank you,


Palando 03-25-2003 03:04 AM

Excellent, the stage is yours...


Adanedhel 03-25-2003 03:19 AM



I sincerely hope it is alright, I have only taken us to the leaving stage, we haven't actually left Edoras yet. That leaves anyone else to add what they need to with a fairly large amount of time to use.

I can change this if it is a problem.


Palando 03-25-2003 04:03 AM

Seems fine to me. That gives us a good lead to Bethberry's post so the next stage will be

Bethberry: The lovers intro
Squatter: Halegs first days journey
Aywen: First night time attack from Whisper and Jael as discussed... *wink*
Ransom: aftermath of attack
Palando: lead into Cambere

hope this sounds ok.


Bêthberry 03-25-2003 03:27 PM

First post for Catrina and Kiatus up.

Sorry for the delay. RL and all that.

Great work here, wonderfully interesting and readable posts. I'm happy to be among you.


Aylwen Dreamsong 03-26-2003 08:33 PM

*Raises hand*

Wasn't the attack supposed to be at night? The last post I read brought the pursuers into the next day.


The Squatter of Amon Rûdh 03-26-2003 10:46 PM

But it ends with them camping for the night. The attack can happen then. I'm happy to edit if you'd prefer, but I think it still works.

Aylwen Dreamsong 03-27-2003 06:55 AM

Okay! Works for me.

I'll have a post up tonight after school and soccer.


[ March 27, 2003: Message edited by: Aylwen Dreamsong ]

Palando 04-02-2003 01:46 AM

Greetings players,

Firstly, sorry for not getting much out in the last few days but work and wedding took over for a bit.

In my last post I have led the group to within sight of Cambere and Deriath's trading post. Basically Deriath is not going to give details of Kiatus and Catrina freely as he has an investment in their safety. (they are carrying is items)
There is only two ways you are going to get the info out of him, either bribe him with a value more than teh profit to be made from his deal with Kiatus (which is quite high so be careful in terms of realism) or the good old violent way of convicing him.

From Bethberry's post you will see that they have a consignment of jewels for delivery to a merchant in Minas Tirith. I am not going to dictate the order at this point but leave it ad hoc for a while. The first to post here that they want to write a section gets the next slot and so on. All I ask is that you make the getting the information from Deriath a nasty business. Halasan is desperate and will stop at nothing to find out their location, whatever the means, and woe betide any who defy him. This will see the start of Halasans fall from grace so maybe have the other characters (except maybe Haleg)start to quietly question the situation, though don't desolve the party just yet... *wink*

Hope that is enough to keep you going. Please ask here or PM me if you need any more information.

All the best


[ April 02, 2003: Message edited by: Palando ]

The Squatter of Amon Rûdh 04-06-2003 08:10 AM

Since nothing's happened here for a while I could take this one, if there are no objections. I'd rather not have everything stall just as we're getting to a nice bit of corruption. [img]smilies/wink.gif[/img]

Iarbarion 04-06-2003 03:37 PM

Hi, I'm not sure if there are still parts available but if there is I would like to try one. Please post on here or PM me and let me know if there are still places left, if there are I will take one.


Palando 04-07-2003 01:57 AM

Greetings again,

Yes things have been quiet for a few days, just been tooooo busy with RL [img]smilies/frown.gif[/img]

Squatter if you would be so kind as to take us to whatever dark and sorded depths you can muster then please do so.

Hi Larbarion, appreciate your interest. While we don't specifically have any main places left if you have read our discussion and RPG threads then you will have a good idea of whats going on so you could create a cameo role along the lines that Estelyn did with her excellent character. If you are still interested then PM to me your character idea and suggested intro piece and I will let you know.

thanks all

Palando of the blue robe

Palando 04-10-2003 01:41 AM

Greetings squatter et al,

Well my experiment to take the game into a gondor style ad hoc submition has failed so we will go back to the successful format of scripting out the sequence.

Squatter - Please write your piece to meet Deriath and the ensueing interrogation.
Tunar - Write of the groups stay in Cambere
Aylwen - Following on from whispers loss of Joal she heads north to gather a force of mercenaries, using all your payment from the last job and then return to the trail the the group.
Ransom - Take the group out of Cambere and towards Minas Tirith, either by boat down the entwash or over land to join the main road.

that will do for now, look forward to your posts.

Palando of the blue robe

The Squatter of Amon Rûdh 04-10-2003 12:08 PM

I really must apologise to you all for not having supplied my instalment. I've been ill and haven't been able to concentrate well enough to write. I'll put up a save tonight which I'll try to fill in, but as I'm sure you all appreciate it isn't easy to write good fiction with a head full of cotton-wool.

Palando 04-11-2003 01:32 AM

One Month Today!!

Yes its one month today since the initial post for BOT was submitted!!!

The story has gone very well so far, though it has slowed down a bit in the last week or so, mostly due to me not being avaliable to drive it forward. [img]smilies/frown.gif[/img]

So, now I rededicate myself to driving this forward to the bitter end...

Squatter: As I had hoped, Haleg kicks butt! Of course if this had been a Gemmell story the guards would have been dead [img]smilies/wink.gif[/img]

Ok Adanedhel, its time for Tunar to react to Halegs actions.

all the best to one and all

Palando of the blue robe

Adanedhel 04-14-2003 01:36 AM


Sorry for the delay in my post. My computer has unexpectedly died and this, and the one in the role play itself, post is coming via a friend whom is posting it for me after I typed it up on my laptop. He is saving the new posts and giving them to me to read but I won't have my computer up and running for another week at least.
I can still post but it is a long process having to get the previous post from my friend on paper then type a new post and give it back to him to post it for me.

But I assure you I should be able to keep up with the role play. I do see him a fair but, at least every second or third day. So I apologise profusely for my absence and I will try as hard as possible to keep up even in the current situation.

Thank you,


Palando 04-14-2003 01:48 AM

Hey that fine, its just good to see some posts up again. [img]smilies/biggrin.gif[/img]

RIghto, its time for Whisper to start plotting the heroes defeat, and for Ransom to take the group out of town.

good luck.

Palando of the blue robe

Aylwen Dreamsong 04-14-2003 05:34 AM

Okay! Was just waiting for my turn [img]smilies/smile.gif[/img]. I'll post this afternoon after school.


Edit: Please let me know if anything needs to eb edited. If they got too close to Cambere or the times are off etc.

[ April 14, 2003: Message edited by: Aylwen Dreamsong ]

Bêthberry 04-14-2003 07:48 AM

Defragging, reconfiguring computer, and upgrading kept me away much of last week. I will be working in a post for Catrina/Kiatus, one of character development rather than any particular action, before I do a post for their arrival at the White City.


Palando 04-25-2003 06:26 AM

Well I have managed to get another post out. I was going to take the players down to a port but boom! in the middle of Halasan's musings you have been attacked! Bit of a surpirse for me as well as the characters really.

Any of the main group is free to post here, there are plenty of goblins to attack!
I will conclude the battle next week.

Lets see how tough you people really are! [img]smilies/wink.gif[/img]

fight well


Adanedhel 04-27-2003 07:34 PM


I have returned! Finally the telephone company came and repaired my cable internet connection. Took them a while but they finally got it done yesterday afternoon with it coming back online this morning (It's 11:30am here in Aus).

Fighting aye? I'll have something up for Tunar soon, the poor fella is scared out of his wits!

It's good to be back,


[ April 27, 2003: Message edited by: Adanedhel ]

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