SmootRK wrote:"BY THE SWEAT OF THE FORGE LORD, MAN! Your pooches attacked two of our group (pointing at our two brave scouts), then nearly finished the rest of us off as we arrived to help!!", exclaims Nivek.
"If these be your 'pets' then you certainly owe us a bit of restitution to make things right."
"Easy dwarf, the wolves were just doing what wolves do. Remember, you were intruding upon their home, not the other way around. I don't owe you anything. I will help you because I choose to do so. If the situation is not to your liking, please go about your business and Barnaby and I will get back to ours."
Birthright wrote:"Old man, we've met Barnaby, but do YOU have a name?
You should know that it is as the Dwarf says: The wolves attacked us and met their fates - if you take my meaning - as a result of the encounter.
We saved the deer they were hunting, though."
"So you killed my wolves? Well, nature's way I suppose. I do hope one of them wasn't Theodore though ... I'm rather fond of Theodore ..."
"And as for my name, actually I have many names, but they need not concern you."
You plough on through the forest following the old man and the bear. There doesn't appear to be any discernible path or trail that they're following, but it's clear that your guides know exactly where they are going.
The sun is high in the sky by the time you emerge into a small glade. Facing you, at the base of a rocky outcrop within the forest, is a cave entrance. Outside the cave a small campfire burns alongside a neatly stacked pile of wood. You can see rabbits, pheasants and other such game hanging from the low branch of a tree awaiting their turn on the fire. Although you are now slightly disorientated following your to-ing-and-fro-ing in the forest this morning, you're fairly sure this is the fire you've been tracking for the last day or so.
Barnaby settles down to the left of the cave entrance and begins gnawing on a bone lying there. The old man beckons you into the cave, which turns out to be a residence of some sort. There is a makeshift bed of animal furs in one corner. Along another wall are a series of ramshackle shelves carrying an assortment of bottles containing what look like herbs, salves and liquids. The furnishing is completed with a homemade wooden table and a single wooden chair. There's barely a square inch of clear surface on the table, covered as it is with an assortment of mismatched cooking and eating utensils that have been either fashioned or scavenged over the years. As a home, it's undeniably basic, but dry and serviceable.
"Right then, let's have a look at you. I'll do the halfling first."
The old man locates the most severe wound on Doughbert's damaged body. He then firmly grasps it (Doughbert winces), closes his eyes, and appears to be silently wording some undistinguishable phrases. Doughbert experiences a warm sensation, and when the old man removes his hand, the wound is closed and healed and just a scar remains (Doughbert's hit points are restored in full). He repeats the procedure with Hiker (again, full hit point restoral), before turning his attention to the other walking wounded (Karl and Nivek are fully healed, Tannen gains five hit points to take him to 6).
"OK, that's that out of the way, and let it be a lesson to you - if you choose to enter The Coastwood, you play by the rules of The Coastwood. Being a human, or a dwarf or halfling for that matter, doesn't grant you any special priviliges. The wolves, bears and all the other creatures are your equals and should be respected accordingly."
"Now, I think you said you were searching for a woman, and the grumpy dwarf mentioned some goblins. Would you like to tell me precisely what your business is in my forest?"
Nivek: No ‘0’ level spells remaining today
Tannen: HP 6/9
Midday, 27th day of Harvestide