Episode 14 : Lake Of Sorrows
 

We are advancing up a small trail between the lake and the forest when Hanz Josephson spots just ahead two thin tripwires across the path. He hears a snap of a twig from the right, and immediately reacts by racing into that piece of shrubbery, screaming, "Ambush!". Immediately a hail of arrows rain down on the rest of us who were not so observant or agile. A vacuum implodes about Wilhelm Schults snapping bones in both his arms, he drops. An arrow slices into Gabriel Von Hendlebrodt's shoulder, severing the artery, blood gushes forth like there is no tomorrow. Arrows strike Gunther Sturmritter stunning him, puncturing Heinz Meier's thigh, and Werner Faßenberg is struck in the side and falls unconscious. Hanz Josephson sends a slug into a dark ranger stunning the man and just avoids the returned arrow.

Gabriel Von Hendlebrodt goes berserk, charges and slashes at the unfortunate ranger in front of him. Weldon Greenears, the Pysk, cast leaping on both Gunther Sturmritter and Heinz Meier. A vacuum implodes on Gunther Sturmritter breaking his weapon arm. This also catches Weldon Greenears damaging him and leaving him stunned on the ground. Heinz Meier goes berserk and leaps on a ranger, pummelling with his morning star. Gunther Sturmritter leaps forward to the bushes that hides the sorceress, whom he tries to kick. Weldon Greenears, the Pysk, races to Werner Faßenberg's body and grabs at the Wand of Ice Bolts. An arrow whips out of the trees and slices through the Pysk's weapon shoulder pinning him to the ground, he expires, a bloody mess. Wilhelm Schults works his way, with his legs, out of the open ground and under a nearby bush.

Arrows continue to reign down upon Heinz Meier and Gabriel Von Hendlebrodt both of whom are struck in the backs of their heads and momently brought down. Other arrows fly at Hanz Josephson but miss, and inflict only a scratch on Stefan. The sorceress physically wields her staff at Gunther Sturmritter bringing it down on his chest with a resounding thunk, but there is no perceivable damage. Gunther Sturmritter flicks his helmet off, grabs some of the troll strength enhancer, swallows, and cast a shield spell. Heinz Meier continues his frenzy, beating a ranger unconscious. An arrow strikes Stefan in the back of the leg and causes him to fall forward unconscious. Gabriel Von Hendlebrodt continues his frenzy too, beating at the ranger in front of him. Hanz Josephson from his position slightly away from the fight continues to pick his targets to sling.

Heinz Meier looks up from the bloody mass before him, spies a ranger, is spied by the ranger, he charges, the ranger nocks an arrow and raises his bow, Heinz Meier is upon him. His morning star knocking the wind from the ranger. The ranger lets slip, the arrow embeds in Heinz Meier's shield arm, blood spurts forth. Hanz Josephson slings again, hurting another ranger. The sorceress cast a spell, she, the ranger with her, Gunther Sturmritter and the bush all vanish. Where they once stood all that remains is a shimmering disk of water with a heat haze above it. Gabriel Von Hendlebrodt strikes again and crushes his opponents neck. Another arrow slams into his side. The same happens to Heinz Meier. Hanz Josephson slings the firer. Heinz Meier turns and charges, the man is struck by the glowing morning star in the chest and falls dead at Heinz Meier's feet. Hanz Josephson and a ranger exchange missile fire. Gabriel Von Hendlebrodt takes sight of this ranger and charges him. The man turns and fires at the oncoming foe, a glancing blow. Gabriel Von Hendlebrodt connects well and stuns the man.

Meanwhile Gunther Sturmritter is in a cavern with the sorceress and the ranger. Gunther Sturmritter steps forward and kicks the witch. There follows a series of kicks, her parring, and the ranger positioning himself for a shot. The witch cast vacuum at Gunther Sturmritter with little to no effect. The dance continues.

Hanz Josephson slings a ranger, shattering the bones in his shield shoulder. Wilhelm Schults having stood, shoulder charges this man, knocking him off balance and sprawling him onto the floor. Heinz Meier looking for a target chargers this man and beats him with the, now very bloody, working end of his morning star. Gabriel Von Hendlebrodt continues his frenzy and pulps the soon to be dead ranger before him. Wilhelm Schults backs away from the still frenzied Heinz Meier.

Hanz Josephson hears Gunther Sturmritter's voice from the shimmering water pool, "Help, help, she's in here!", he steps onto the disk and is immediately in the cavern, standing at the centre of a pattern on the floor. He slings at the sorceress but she raises her arm and magically causes the slug to go wild. She cast at Gunther Sturmritter, he feels himself as if bound head to foot by ropes that are ever tightening. He kicks at her but cannot coordinate his actions and misses. The ranger draws his broadsword. Hanz Josephson steps from the center and draws his weapon.

Gabriel Von Hendlebrodt seeing no foes to fight and calms from frenzy and then faints from blood loss. Heinz Meier continues to beat his pulped ranger further. Wilhelm Schults staggers over to Werner Faßenberg and with his nose and mouth draws forth from his upper breast pocket the one remaining vial of extreme healing. He moves to Stefan and just managers to pour half of the liquid down our unconscious healer's throat, the other half evaporating from the earth were it splashed. Stefan snaps awake, fully healed.

The sorceress cast break limb and directs it at Gunther Sturmritter, his right leg gives and he falls to the floor. The ranger attacks striking him on his expose skull and sends him into a coma. Hanz Josephson steps back into the centre of the pattern, but nothing happens, "Oh, shit!", he sends a sling slug into the chest of the ranger, stunning him. The sorceress turns on Hanz Josephson and cast disruption. Pain aches through his body and he falls unconscious to the floor. The witch orders her ranger to dispatch these two and limps off down the passage.

Meanwhile Stefan tourniquets Gabriel Von Hendlebrodt to stem the tide of blood. He cast calm on Heinz Meier who stops beating the bloody mass, and who also then faints from blood loss. Stefan tourniquets him also and then repeats the procedure on Werner Faßenberg's bleeding wound. Finally Stefan cast intuition and steps into the shimming pool of water, he vanishes and appears alone in the cavern, that is except for the decapitated remains of Gunther Sturmritter and Hanz Josephson. He smells the salty air and hears the cry of distant gulls as the spell ends. He knows that we are many miles from the sea.

Stefan begins the process of healing the fallen to consciousness. The shimmering pool vanishes after two hours and after six hours we sight, and signal, a patrol boat flying the Kings standard to our aid. The boat carries mercenaries who were bound for the north shore to join in the fight with the dragon and trolls. This boat was diverted to patrol the coast and either assist us or kill any supporters of the witch. Their instructions are to return us to the Maguskôl. We return there to heal our wounds.

 

 
(c) 1999 Hammerstein Rolemaster Campaign Journal by Ross Stopford  
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