28 Jester In the Year 3208
Hear, O Princelings, the tale of The Battle of Portown. For decades, bards will sing of the bravery of a group of adventurers (three human, one half-orc and one gnomish) who held off the combined might of a band of marauding pirates from the sea and a troop of goblin mercenaries from the land. And of the fall of one and the kidnapping of another.
Red (recently returned from his unsuccessful attempt to track the elusive mage Magoo), Gregor, Feng Ying, Clodius and Lemunda were woken from their slumber in the Green Dragon Inn by the town's alarm bell ringing - even though it was still several hours to dawn.
From his window Red espied the Sea Witch, the pirate ship of Elean Starlight, the fierce Zennish pirate queen the group had battled a couple of weeks earlier in the Tunnels, had docked at the town's small harbour and its foul crew were spilling out into the streets - pillaging and torching as they went.
Those towns folk that could fled towards the tavern, the strongest building in town. Clodius, who had been asleep in a pool of mead in the main room of the tavern went outside and climbed the stairs to meet his colleagues who were formulating plans to fight off the invaders.
Red and Gregor scrambled onto the roof of the inn to provide hassle the pirates with missile fire - Gregor slinging magically enchanted stones (and managing to take out two pirates with a single stone at one point).
Meanwhile, Feng Ying stealthily dropped down into the street and slid off to try to find a lone pirate to 'interrogate'. Bursting into a house where a pirate had just beheaded an innocent townsperson, Feng Ying stunned the foul man - but quickly realised his lack of knowledge of Zennish (the tongue of the pirates) meant he couldn't get any information.
Red spotted Elean in the middle of the pirate horde as her men headed for the tavern's front doors - on the tail of the fleeing towns folk, who just managed to get the doors locked and barred before the pirates reached them.
Red scurried to the front of the tavern and, having been shocked to also see a party of goblins coming down the track from the ruins of the old city, dropped down to tackle the pirates at the door - while Clodius, and then Lemunda, fought off the ones trying to get up the staircase to the top floor.
Gregor and Elean traded missile shots - to little effect - although Gregor was taken with the obvious magical nature of her crossbow. Then Gregor jumped down from the roof to engage her in furious hand-to-hand combat. Elean drew on her primal fury and went berserk as Feng Ying crept up behind her to try to land a fatal blow.
Elean's fury was such that although Gregor managed to strike some quite powerful blows, she appeared to be oblivious to them and her attention was focussed now on reducing the gnomish monk to a green paste...
Out the front of the tavern, as the goblins approached, the pile of dead pirates grew as Lemunda, Clodius and Red hacked, slashed and slew their through the encroaching ruffians.
But then the goblins arrived, under cover of a shower of arrows, and one managed to carve Lemunda across the stomach with a lucky blow. She fell back, fighting on, but having to hold her guts in place with one arm, as consciousness faded from her body.
She went down fighting, but by the time Clodius fought his way through the goblins to her she was dead.
Elean's mighty blows almost killed Feng Ying and had not Gregor distracted Elean, the pirate queen might have slain the gnome then and there... and in her berserk fury probably torn his body to pieces.
Just as it looked as though Gregor had got the upper hand, the pirates who had been raiding the town (rather than attacking the tavern) reached their leader and engaged Gregor in a mighty brawl, while two helped her away and another lifted Feng Ying's small body up and carried him off towards the Sea Witch.
The pirates round the front of the tavern were all dead and of the goblins few remained. The archers fled when they saw the day was lost for them while one brave goblin - empowered by a magical potion - took on Red and though he landed one mighty blow, the seasoned ranger got the better of him.
As the sun slowly rose and the flames of the burning houses took hold, Red surveyed the carnage around him.
It was impossible to say at that time how many locals had died, trapped in their homes, either from the fires or the blades of the pirates - but some had definitely been taken - including Feng Ying (probably to be sold as slaves) and Portown might never recover from the slaughter.
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