The Siege

I have little love, or need of writing. The Grove however have always been strict in keeping their histories and, since no other members are here beside me, I have taken it upon myself to catalog what I believe to be an event which will forever alter our people. For record purposes, the following has been recorded by Cadrel, member of the order of the Grove, of human birth adopted into the Grove at the age of 5.

We arrived today at the fortress of moonbrooke this morning and what we found was truly a terrible sight to behold. The drow which attacked us on the road, were not a lone incident apparently. They have laid siege to the city and have hidden their forces in the forest nearby during the day while their foul beasts, drug up from within the earth, keep the soldiers trapped inside the city. Under a constant siege for the past several weeks moonbrooke is undermanned and the drow have taken our people prisoner, tortured them, and put them on display outside of the city gates. We (myself, a wizard from the north, a cleric, and a member of the Silverleaf family) have been placed in an advanced scouting party and tasked with taking the lead on finding a way to save the city, upon arrival we immediately tried to rescue some of the unfortunate captured, yet for every poor soul we cut down another is brought out before us and is tortured. The prisoners that we rescued are hardly alive, they have been so brutally tortured that they can barely remain conscious. The cleric has told us that should they even survive under intense care, they may not even retain their sanity.

It pains me to say this but I do not believe we can save these people, we are too few in number to mount any serious attack on the drow and rescue the prisoners they are holding. Yet without attacking, we have no way to prevent the drow from replacing the tortured we rescue. Unfortunately, Alana Silverleaf, has let her grief over the prisoners cloud her better judgment, and when Thoradron and I left to inspect the keep, she took a small contingent of men out to rescue more prisoners. She was fortunate enough to lose only a few men yet the losses could have been much worse. I can only hope she realizes that the best way to help the captured is to gain entry to the city and join forces with those left inside.

Tonight we prepare to discover what sorcery the drow have used to bring these fouls creatures of theirs up from the underground. Hopefully we will discover a way to repel the monsters and gain entry to the city, were we can join forces with those left inside. After much debate, Alana has decided again to send more men out during the night, I can only hope they survive through the night.

Drow in the Village

Moonbrooke is a sedate but intriguing fortress. It is the perfect blend of magic and nature. Magic flows through every root and vine I encountered, it was spectacular. I found an old magic library filled with knowledge; I could have spent a hundred years but alas I had but a day. The studying was worthwhile for I found a scroll and hopefully some wisdom.

After much debate we have decided to travel to the capital and figure out what evil is befalling our land and to what extent the vile darkness has spread. We came upon what appeared to be a deserted town but Varak was ambushed by a band of grimlocks. The band quickly became a horde but Thoradron ‘s illusionary bear most of them at bay initially. Although he will do anything to find someone to hide behind, his magical prowess I find impressive.

I was ready for this battle, or so I thought. I quickly entered combat downing two of the grimlocks with my frigid blade. However as I positioned myself to protect Varek’s flank, he bolted to save Thrace who had taken on the horde by herself. It is then that I realized that the Drow wanted me. Darakness was all around me. I felt cold steel at my side and then nothing. The next thing I knew, I was lying on the ground, Thrace by my side in the darkness. She nudged me in an unknown direction and I crawled into the light. There was a small house that might provide us shelter so I covered our retreat with my bow. I must find a way to make the drow pay for their obsession with elves.

The Night the Lights Went Out in Moonbrooke

The Drow are an unpredictable enemy. They did not try to sneak-in as before; this time it was a full blown frontal assault. My new comrades and I took the left flank closest to the castle. And then they came. It is hard to know who is the bigger beast, Cadrel or his horse. With the aid of an unknown knight they held the right side of our ranks even downing one of the Drow alone.

I on the other hand am embarrassed to say that I did not do our family proud during my first real combat. All the practice, all the fancy footwork, everything was lost or forgotten in the heat of combat. This spell-blade duality was so confusing. Cast-swing or swing cast, I could not get it right then in the midst of my confusing there it was, standing before me, a Drow. “That the night when the lights went out in Georgia.” One-two and I was lying unconscious in battle. I awoke badly wounded laying between (at their feet) of several enemies, what a poor elven girl gonna do, crawl and pray. Thrace was a gift from above. Not only did she heal me but she kept the party alive in general through her healing hands. I never could have crawls away had it not been for the cool blade of . Actually he is far handsomer when he is standing over you saving your bacon than at eye level.

No, I was not completely useless in battle, just disappointing. I managed to down two of the grimlocks and bring the “beasties-calling-staff” to a location where Thoradron could disarm it. We survived, none of our little band died. There are stories of a Drow Princess/Queen (witch) who just “B”-slapped Seriah (our leader). I could see nothing through the darkness but Thrace has her hands full putting Seriah back together. As usual, after the battle I try to rally the troops. I suppose I have a cohort of follows but I suspect they are more enamored with my sword dancing than my sword play.


Night of Siege

Varak’s return to our group from his sickness was welcome. He brought order and leadership to the chaos organizing us for a common goal. He is strong and brave but as ugly as humans are mix in a little Orc and “oh my goodness”. He is brash, he is rude but he has the respect of the army and I guess that is all that counts if we want to survive. In the darkness we prepared to face our foe. Thoradron and I tried to detect them magically will meager success. For most of the night they stayed out of our range. It turns out that they have been attracting those “beasties beneath thee” with some sort magical calling device they place in the ground nightly. In the mist of the darkness Varak retrieved it almost being downed in battle. Ugly and valiant, what an interesting combination!

I would love to say that I earned my keep in the fray but alas my sight could not penetrate the darkness and I landed only a single arrow in the chest of one of the Drow. Thrace seems to have a deep compassion for the sick and wounded. From sparing, I realize that she can hold her own in battle although I believe I am more adept at fighting than she but her value in battle will not be measured by the enemies that she downs but by her comrades that she lifts up to return to battle.

We prepare for the night, they will never be able to sustain the beasties siege.


Siege at Moonbrooke

I cannot believe the overall disarray associated with this army. We are two hundred strong with limited and fragmented leadership. It is unclear whether I have gained the respect of my comrades or if they are enamored by my swordplay and demeanor. But none the less, I have made strides at organizing the forces.

Moonbrooke is not what we expected. Rather than a fortress to seek safe haven, it is a city under siege. There is death in the ground or at least these unstoppable creatures swarming beneath the sand. And the Drow, I have met the Drow. My first experience, I encountered the Drow but now I understand for I have met them. I watched them fillet one of our kinsmen just for sport. Dismemberment and torture is just part of their being, they are demons. While others snuck about, I took a squad to rescue our captured mutilated brethren only to go head to head with the Drow. Our potential losses were great. Arrows and crossbow bolts rained down from the sky, our men dropping all around me. I now understand Drow poison but at the end of the day we lost 3 men but killed two Drow.

I have this terrible dilemma. I have found a small group of adventurers who may possess the grit of which Adrian and Aragon spoke but as far as I can see they lack wisdom and honor. There is a half-orc brute whose ugliness of personality is only out shadowed by his arrogance. There is a dwarven cleric whose stomach seems unprepared for the horrors which the Drow will bring. I do not know what he is but he has an unruly Pegasus. He is well respected by the Elven Court but for all his bravery, I do not see the wisdom in his actions. The soul surviving wizard has chosen him to be his meat shield. I suppose a young wizard must do what a wizard must do to survive. Little does he understand that what I lack in magic prowess, I make up with blade finesse. Do I join this band of misfits or do I try to rally the men and try to form a fighting force. We must break the siege but it cannot be done with the Drow at our doorsteps. The path is clear, although my comrades in arm are not. If we survive this night, we need to hunt the Drow by day.


Journey Back-Day 1

The aftermath of the battle was incredibly unnerving. The camp entire camp is in total disarray. There is nobody in charge and desertion it the rule. The elven population has been decimated with almost three- fourths of us lying dead. I met a human member of the Elven Court, Lady Seriah Dwin’ania treated him with the ultimate respect. She also acknowledge that our family name still warrants respect within the Elven Court and I have been given authority to time to organize the remaining fighting force. I hesitate to call us an army. We are a rag-tag group of frightened wounded soldiers.

As we traveled back towards Moonbrook the gibberling awakened from sleep. This time I was ready, mesmerizing them with dancing lights, holding them at bay until I and my new companions could mow them down. I am not sure what lies ahead but I venture forward.



It was like being caught near a wildfire. These nasty smelly feces covered vermin came in droves down the mountainside. There was nowhere to run and nowhere to hide. Then in the midst of the confusion, I met one. It was sinister, it was the embodiment of evil, it was a Drow. There I stood, face-to-face with a Drow. It has the face and odor of death itself with cold chilling eyes. It moved slowly and deliberately but in the blink of an eye it can strike. It had bloody weapons in each hand, I tried to evade it but it cornered me. I hit it but it seemed to chuckle as it struck back. It is hard to say why I am still alive, was it the next wave of vermin or the monk who came out of nowhere to carry my wounded body out of harm’s way. I have survived my first battle. I have faced our greatest fear and I am only six days a woman and no longer a girl.


Alana's Report

Letters Home: My Journey Begins; Alana
I have finally reached the Age of Adventure. I am a Silverleaf and to honor my family tradition I must leave my mark on the world. Traveling to Taylon, I came upon some halflings hiring mercenaries for a great battle that they are telling us little about. They provide everything that we need except except a hope of survival. (Relax family, I am a Silverleaf, we always return home.)
As I assess my comrade, they are a sorted angry, ill prepared lot. There is much unrest in the camp and there is nothing like a group of frightened boys who know they are going to die. I have had a few minor encounters and although my sword skills continue to grow with practice the average mercenary is more interested in my feminine charm then my prowess in battle.
I have befriended a young wizard. He is still raw but has potential. There is a dwarf with whom I have been sparing. She is an ok warrior although her weapon skills are inferior to mine but see seems to know what she is doing with battle wounds. Something is going to happen soon.
My First week on my own.


17th of Firewane

Varak’s Journal; The 17th day of the month of Firewane, according to the reckoning of the Severed Hands.

The house we had sought shelter in seemed quite defensible. Thrace got busy attending to our wounds, and before long, Alana headed upstairs to scout and I quickly followed. We discovered that there were no windows, but there were locked chests on the floor and items on the shelves about the room. As we began to gather stuff, we heard creatures climbing up the outside walls to the roof. They proceeded to tear holes in the roof, dropping down on Alana and I, cutting us off from the stairs down. Grimlocks!

Alana backed into a corner, and I was knocked down by several grimlocks dropping through the roof. I lay on my back, wildly swinging my falchion until I was finally able to withdraw into another corner. As we fought for our lives, Cadrel and Torent charged up the stairs and joined the fight. We quickly dispatched the grimlocks, gathered the treasures, and headed back for the caravan.

We soon became aware of a drow scouting party that was going to overtake the caravan. Carefully selecting an ambush site, we surprised a band of grimlocks, being directed by a couple drow. While we destroyed the grimlocks, the drow found the caravan and took off into the woods. I stayed behind to get the caravan moving while the rest of the party pursued. Shortly after setting out, Thrace showed up, riding Cadrel’s horse and looking for me. The rest of the party was about to plunge into some denser woods and my tracking skills would be useful.

The 10th of Firewane

Varak’s Journal; The 10th day of the month of Firewane, according to the reckoning of the Severed Hands.

Darkness, pain, dizziness, my limbs don’t seem to respond as they should. Where am I?

And then memory comes flooding back.

After some discussion, we decided to push on to the elven capital with our remaining soldiers, escorting wagons. When word came back from the scouts of a village, a small group of us went forward to investigate.

The village seemed abandoned, but I noticed a lot of tracks, heading towards the central building, with two smaller trails to outbuildings. Alana had drawn her bow, and I knew Cadrel was mounted on his warhorse, so I headed to one of the outbuildings and prodded some strange mounds of dirt with my dagger. The mounds proved to be grimlocks.

Alana and Cadrel quickly arrived at my side and we dealt with the grimlocks. But another wave was coming through the village on our flank, and more were massing to our front, backed up by three drow. Things were starting to look bleak. Thrace was facing maybe a half dozen grimlocks by herself, Cadrel’s horse had gone down with a drow bolt buried in it’s flesh, and the drow were casting their darkness spells. We were cut off from the woods we had come from, and we needed to take shelter in one of the nearby houses. Alana had gone down somewhere in the darkness, but I tied up three grimlocks and Thrace was able to reach Alana. I was bleeding from numerous wounds as we fell back, finally collapsing just before reaching the house.

Here I sit, disabled from my wounds, apparently carried in by Torent. If I can do nothing else, I will sit, facing the door, with my blade in my hands. I only ask for enough strength to take one of my enemies into death with me.


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