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"I will," a hobbit-lad said. "Though I can't say I know rightly what this is all about. I'll have to get my pony."
Me axe is at your service on this your quest, if you'll have me,' said a runt of a dwarf; 'Grundig's the name.'

The top of his green hood could just be seen over the man sized table, as he stood beside it. On his back he carried a large two-handed broadaxe that looked almost as tall as he was, its two opposed black blades were intricately etched with runes silvery, and its ironwood handle was wrapped in leather. At his left side hung a short sword and in his right boot was a small dagger.

Upon his head under the hood he wore an iron cap that looked like it had been used for a battering ram as the head it was on couldn't possibly have bumped into the cross-beams of any Dwarven mines, not on its current owner at any rate.
Beneguld stood watching them from behind a tree. His long green cape hid him from unfriendly eyes, and all that was visible were his black leather boots. He was gripping and releasing his dagger at his side (one of many hidden in his clothes and boots)--it had always been a nervous habit of his. He had no armour but a light leather vest, but he seldom needed armour--his sword was too quick, and he had a sixth sense about who was a foe and who was not. His master had fled in the fire, but he remained to make sure no one discovered him or his plans. That was backfiring. They cannot reach Weathertop tomorrow...They must not know of my master. he thought.

"I will assist you also," Beneguld said, stepping out into the light. "I know that country well."
"If you our in need of some help then I will join...the name is Howlett." said a small sruffy man...I can track as good as an elf..even better if you ask me and no job is too dirty for my hands."
He didn't carry much he had no visible weapons or shield only thing noticable was a some fabric hanging round his neck....he also carried a small satchel which contained some favourable beverages.
"I will go with you said a large elf. You may call me Dark".

[Edited on 21/7/2003 by Rednell]
suddenly out of the darkness, a maiden dressed in the blue depths of the sea glided towards the group. "I would very much like to acompany you on your quest, for I can provide water so you will never go thirsty. my name is anatea, from a race few people know. I come from the waters in search for an adventure, I can help in battles, for few can resist my song, but Im also willing to fight. may I join you?" she took a glance over at Beneguld, but her eyes were covered by her hood, then she tossed back her hood uncovering her golden hair and her bright green eyes.
Beneguld felt an immediate uneasiness when Anatea spoke. He was about to say that she was not needed, when the little hobbit lad spoke up.

"Of course you can join us. I dare say we might need you before the end of this thing--something about this fire and that note just don't feel right."
"thank you my young fellow" anatea smiled "you will lead and I will follow, for I do not know the way in this strange lands".
"I think we have lingered here long enough. I would like to find out what's at Weather Top, but i'm a hasty person so we may go when everyone is ready I guess"...

[Edited on 21/7/2003 by Rednell]
" I agree, and Im ready to take leave" anatea answered.
so they all picked up their stuff and made themselves ready and left to weathertop.
As they left the Tavern Grundig, the height impaired dwarf, asked: 'Are we going to walk all the way or are we going to hire a carriage?' It was obvious he couldn't reach the stirups to mount a horse or even if someone placed him on a saddle, his legs still couldn't reach them; the srirups could never be shortened enough to close the gap; he would never be a horseman.
"would'nt a carrige be too easy to be seen"?

[Edited on 21/7/2003 by Rednell]
Mounts would get us there too fast, thought Beneguld "Yes, it would," he said hastily. "We best go on foot." He turned to the hobbit lad "Your pony will be here when we get back."

"Well, couldn't we use him to carry stuff?" The small hobbit replied. He obviously did not want to leave it behind. "He's very good, and wouldn't be trouble!"

Beneguld sighed. Why did people have to make journeys difficult? "Allright, we can bring your pony, but that should be the only mount, if we do not wish to be seen. It is difficult to hide horses--even more difficult then hiding ponies," he said, glancing at the hobbit lad. "What is your name?"

"Gotho,sir," the hobbit lad stammered. He didn't like this strange man. Gotho ran to the stables, ands soon returned leading a white pony with black spots. "Here he is. You can put your pack on him, if you want," Gotho said to the lady. "He won't mind."
"why thank you my hobbit friend." Anatea placed her small baggage on the pony. but she kept her daggars and her bow and arrows on her back." just in case of an emergency." she smiled at the small hobbit by her side.
"We'll then Dark said eagerly. Let's get going".

[Edited on 21/7/2003 by Rednell]
"It's best to go this way," said Beneguld, leading them in a direction that looked particularly difficult.
'Well, it certainly looks untravelled,' remarked Grundig, 'but if that's the way we must go, then me axe can help clear the way.' And the dwarf proceeded to swing his axe through the newly grown stands of alder, vine maple, blackberries, and sting nettles that was blocking the seldom used trail.

'Oh, by the by,' he continued, as he stoped to wipe sweat from his brow, 'the axe is called "Slyce" and he would rather feed on Orc knees. Funny thing about Orcs knees, they don't wear iron collars, and after Slyce cuts through one, their owner seems ta lose interest in trying ta remove me head.'

'Well, it certainly looks untravelled,' remarked Grundig, 'but if that's the way we must go, then me axe can help clear the way.' And the dwarf proceeded to swing his axe through the newly grown stands of alder, vine maple, blackberries, and sting nettles that was blocking the seldom used trail.

'Oh, by the by,' he continued, as he stoped to wipe sweat from his brow, 'the axe is called "Slyce" and he would rather feed on Orc knees. Funny thing about Orcs knees, they don't wear iron collars, and after Slyce cuts through one, their owner seems ta lose interest in trying ta remove me head.'

"Well you'd be wrong there Grundig my friend" remarked Howlett as he ran up along side him....
"Someone has been down this path recently and I mean recently...were talkin' a dozen maybe two I can't be too sure. There is something else travelling with them and it reeks of death."
Suddenly Howletts rushs into the trees...and a few minutes later he comes back ..."I heard sum'thing but it only turned out to be a deer....but at least we have supper for when we arrive at Weathertop."
He then slung the corpse on the back of one of the horses."
Howlett felt anxious so he turned to the others...."I'm gonna go and scout ahead....I want to see if I can find the others who were on this path....."
and with that he ran into the shadows and vanished.....
"If it is who I think it is." muttered Howlett as he ran "Were gonna can to kill them in there sleep." and on he ran
"Howlett seemed a bit on egde" Dark said. "That can't mean anything good i'm guessing, but i'll say again i'm hasty to make decisions".

[Edited on 21/7/2003 by Rednell]
Beneguld stopped short when Howlett ran off the first time, and when he returned, he was worried. My master went the other way, he thought. What is this threat? Ah, perhaps it is not a threat at all, he tried to reassure himself. But he knew better.

"Howlett seemed a bit on egde" Dark said. "That can't mean anything good i'm guessing, but i'll say again i'm hasty to make decisions".

"No indeed," said Beneguld. "I feel it too. Have your weapons drawn."
Gotho did not much like the way things were going. "Weapon?" he said. "I don't have a weapon!"

Beneguld knew this hobbit would be more trouble than he was worth.

"Here," he said, throwing Gotho an extra dagger out of his pouch, "that should be just your size."

Gotho wondered what would happen to his pony if there was any sort of fighting. He wasn't much sure.
"your right beneguld, we should always be prepared, for
even a shadow that crosses our path."
"your right beneguld, we should always be prepared, for
even a shadow that crosses our path."
He sniffed the air and all he smelt was death and decay... "This is not good" said Howlett has he sat behind a tree trunk...."There our not strong enough to take them and we cannot go round the camp but....." then a branch snapped and a drunken orc fumbled past Howlett....."no time to waste he can't find me" and then he leapt at the orc and and went for his neck....."too long since I have done this" and then the silence in the forest was cut by a ungodly howl
"I believe thats our que" Dark said. He drew his sword and dagger. "Shall we assist"?

[Edited on 21/7/2003 by Rednell]
Howlett leapt into a nearby tree and watched as a one of the nine walked below him....."may the gods have mercy on us...." but then suddenley it stopped and arced its head upwards....Howlett held his breath as he waited for death.
"Well if I'm gonna go down it might as well be fightin'" and then he leapt....
All the hair on Grundig's head was trying to raise his steel cap, 'Me axe is ready, but that ungodly howl was it friend or foe?'
"I feel an evil precence"... Dark and the others followed Howlett's trail. Suddenly they stopped. Dark saw Howlett fighting the nine. "Oh d*nm we're doomed". Dark lit a torch "Alright, you forsaken black devils who wants some fire"! Some of the wraiths broke of and raced towards Dark the others.

[Edited on 21/7/2003 by Rednell]
Howlett was slashing away at the wraith when he noticed a flame coming from the treeline. He the saw Grundig and Dark slashing through the shadows.....
"Finally abit of help" shouted Howlett as he grabbed at the hideous beast.
Dark knocked away a Wraith and set fire to it, and then caught a a large stick on fire. "Howlett you may find this useful"! He threw the stick to Howlett.

[Edited on 21/7/2003 by Rednell]
"Cheers bub" shouted Howlett as he grabbed the stick and shoved it in the wraiths face. Which then ran off into the trees....."I think we have them on the run keep at them friends....then we can make a run for WeatherTop I saw a clear a few yards yonder 'he pointed ahead'
Dark and the rest followed Howlett. They made it to the bottom of Weathertop. Dark panted "I think we can hold our ground here..for a while anyway.

[Edited on 21/7/2003 by Rednell]
"No my friends we must reach higher ground and prepare ourselves for what is to come" said Howlett with concern in his voice...
"We enter a time when the elements will be against us...we must set camp atop Weathertop and ready ourselves come....." as Howlett scouted ahead.
They began they're climb. "The Wraiths have almost reached Weathertop! We must hurry" By the time they were at the top the Wraiths had begun climbing the bottom. Dark lit another torch (the other had gone out). "Does everyone have torches"?

[Edited on 21/7/2003 by Rednell]
ooc: sorry I haven't been posting--my computer was being stupid!

ic: Gotho had been running with all his might, but had fallen behind. He and his pony had just enough time to hide before the wraithes went by. They passed without noticing him, but had Gotho counted he would have noticed only eight. "Well then, boy, come on," he whispered to the pony. "Maybe we could make it to Weathertop after the fightings done." He stepped out from behind a tree and started off, when he heard a twig snap behind him--the ninth wraithe. Gotho whirled, and tried to hold up his dagger, but he was too frightened. Right as the wraithe was about to attack, Beneguld leaped from the branch above, knocking the hobbit out of the way. The wraithe screeched, and charged again, this time at Beneguld.

"Run!" the man yelled to Gotho, and the hobbit-lad did. Beneguld tried to fight the wraithe, and he held his own fairly well, but it was not enough. Beneguld gave a final attack, then turned and ran after Gotho. He saw fire on the hill ahead, and he ran for that. D*mn these wraithes he thought. Perhaps the others are faring better, though I can't say that's very good for me or my master.
"I don't know about you, but I'm starting to get hungry, is anyone thirsty? I've got enough bottles of water on my pack, and I can provide more. where is my pack? I've left it on the pony, where is the little one? and Beneguld? they must have fallen behind." anatea said turning towards the path they had just passed, lifting up her torch to her face, she could see hear in the distance the screech of the wraith.
Gotho ran as fast as he could, dashing through the trees. He could hear the clash of metal, and he knew that Beneguld was fighting the wraithe. "I hope he's all right!" Gotho murmered. He saw a Weathertop off in the distance, and ran for it.

Suddenly he stopped short. He had lost his pony. "Griff!" he said (that was his name of the pony). "Oh, where is he?!?!" Gotho did a 180 and started running back. "Griff!" he whispered as loud as he dared. "Griff where are you?"
"The Wraiths are reaching the top" Dark said. Dark looked down at the Wraiths. "1 2 3..hhhmmmm theres only eight of them down there, curious".

[Edited on 21/7/2003 by Rednell]
Grundig looked out from under the rock he was hiding, 'Beneguld may be able to handle one wraith on his own, but can he do that and shepherd the pony and hobbit too? You want I should go look for them or should I stay here to help flame-broil the rest of these black badarses when they attack?'

"I dunno" he looked darkly down on the Wraiths. "If you leave us it's gonna be 3 against 7, but if you don't it may be the end of the hobbit and the pony, so theres what we're up against, but I think you should decide witch you do".

OOC: I sound like John Wayne Tongue Smilie Tongue Smilie Tongue Smilie

[Edited on 21/7/2003 by Rednell]
Beneguld was running as fast as he could, but the wraithe had mounted a horse. The man heard its hooves thundering on the ground close behind him. Benguld was just about to turn and face it when a man stepped out of the trees in front of him. The wraithe halted, saw the man, then turned and ran into the trees. Beneguld could not see the man's face, but immediately recognized his voice.

"Beneguld!" the man said, "I thought you were staying in Bree to cover our trail." It was his master.
Gotho was frantically searching for his pony when he heard voices, and not of wraithes. That sounds like Beneguld he thought. But who is the other?
"They are have almost reached the top, Grundig make your decision quickly".

[Edited on 21/7/2003 by Rednell]
"I need to get my pack, Its really important, I'll be right back!" with that anatea dissapeared into the darkened shadows of the trees.
'Now where's she off to? Grundig thinks, 'Oh well.'

Then he says, 'Best I stays here where I knows you will need me axe then. Probably a waste of time me wandering around down there where the young hobbit has probably already found a rabbit hole and popped out of sight and the wraiths won't be after the pony. So I'll make me stand here with you.

Look out! they're here!'

And Grundig sprang along side Dark swinging "Slyce" in one hand and a torch in the other trying to drive the dastardly devils from the summit of Weather Top toward the mutual protection of the quest and his comrades in arms.
"oh, great 4 vs 7". Dark said. trying his best to set the advacing Wraiths on fire. "One and three fourths for each us" he laughed.

The continued for minutes, and one was finally taken out. "Don't they ever give up"!? Dark cried.
'Something tells me they were already dead,' answered Grundig, as he ducked under the sword of his nearest wraith and set alight the hem of its robe.
Beneguld caught his breathe, then spoke. "There was a party of travelers that found the note. They wanted to go and find what it was about, and I came with them to keep them from finding you. So far I have succeeded, Rengad, my friend." He added with a smile.

"Do they know who you are?" asked Renegad. "Did anyone recognize you in Bree?"

"Not that I know of. I never showed my face, and I am not from this part of the country, as you know. I must say I joined your very worthy cause because my brother did. Revenge on small countrytowns isn't usually my line of business."

"Nevertheless," his master replied, "that fire we started was supposed to give us a getaway! You were supposed to keep anyone from following."

"I was going to take them the longest way here, but those accursed wraithes ambushed us!" Beneguld said. Then he remembered the wraithe's reaction to his master. "Why did the wraithe not attack you, as well?"

"Let's just say we have some friends to help us in our revenge." Renegad chuckled.
"Enough of this"! Dark reached into his pack, and grabbed two large unlit lanterns. He threw them at the wraiths, and they busted and oil splashed about. It covered the ground and got on Wraiths. Dark and Grundig threw they're torches onto the ground, and lit the fuel. The Wraiths were lost in a sea of flame. Many screeches and the Wraiths fled. " I bet they'll be back later" Dark panted. "And I have no torches left".
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