Morgan and Tony gathered their books, dice, drinks, chips, and character sheets together before driving over to Ramsey’s house. The date had been set at their previous session and no phone calls had come in to change the time. Ramsey’s mother generously allowed the bunch of them to set up in her rather large and very comfortable den a few times each week.
They were the last ones to arrive. Ramsey was already set up behind his Dungeon Master’s screen and Morgan had no doubt he had a harrowing array of events in mind for the evening. Kelvin, Wagner, Cade, and Max were already sitting scattered around the den. Sawyer did not play the game, but as Ramsey’s older brother, he sometimes made brief appearances, especially when the noise levels were high.
Morgan’s character died on the last adventure so everyone waited while she rolled a new character with her favorite green dice. Ramsey kept a watchful eye on the proceedings. He always made sure the scores were not enhanced to a player’s advantage. Her dexterity score was very high so she chose to be a thief, and because she had been reading Tolkien’s books, she chose to be a Halfling. This gave her some language advantages that would be an asset to the group. She named her character Celeste and joined the party at one of the inns in Devon.
Tony’s character was a human cleric named Cornelius. Kelvin’s character was a half-orc named Kaos, who being a chaotic fighter caused quite a bit of trouble in the game. Wagner played a human paladin with the name Marcellus. Cade was an elven magic user named Brandon. Max played a dwarf fighter named Silas.
Celeste managed to steal a few supplies they needed for their adventure before Kaos caused a fight that got the group run out of town. They found a curious hole in one of the hills several miles from town. When Silas went inside to explore, he soon returned saying it appeared to be a keep. They followed him into the darkness where their torches threw eerie shadows on the walls. They entered a large chamber and found several chests strewn around the room. Celeste attempted to pick one of the locks and succeeded. Inside the chest were some scrolls, which Brandon quickly claimed, a dagger, which she took for herself, and a few gold pieces, over which the others began to squabble. The noise rose and suddenly several orcs with weapons appeared. Celeste moved behind the stronger characters and took out her sling. Watching for an opportunity, she shot at their opponents in the melee. Ramsey told her each missile had a chance to hit the others in the group. He did rolls to determine if she hit her companions. Luckily, her shots hit her targets and she helped kill the orcs.
The guys had her try the lock on another chest, but she could not pick it. They moved on after she failed once more. Ramsey called for a break and they all went into the kitchen and devoured some snacks that each of them had contributed. Ramsey’s sister, Jane, made a rare appearance and quickly disappeared back into the private rooms of the house.
When they returned to the game, they went deeper into the dark halls of the keep. They decided to open a huge steel door, but Celeste’s lock picking skills were not up to the task. Brandon cast a spell he found on one of the scrolls obtained earlier and the portal opened. As they stepped inside the room, a group of skeletons attacked them. Cornelius and Marcellus had holy water and that was most effective against the monsters, but the whole group sustained serious damage before conquering the skeletons. When the weakened party explored the room, they found a very large chest. Celeste opened it with her tools and they found a sword, a mace, and a ring inside. There were also silver pieces, which they divided among themselves. An argument broke out over who would have the weapons and ring, Kaos began shouting as if he were berserk. Celeste, Cornelius, and Marcellus managed to quiet the others before something else could find them. They rode to another town and the game broke up for the night.
Morgan and Tony invited the others to come over to their apartment for drinks, but everyone had to be up early in the morning, so they went home alone. Tony went to bed soon after they got home. Morgan stayed up thinking about how Kelvin had acted during the game. Nothing about him, she decided, was simple.
© Jo Ann J. A. Jordan
Wednesday, October 30, 2013
This is the edited cover concept. I would love to have your opinions on which you like better.