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  1. #101

    ((Club Eclair)) The Dwarf's Challenge at Fil Gashan

    To: Daffodilia Wildfeet
    Chief, Bounders of the Shire - Addernotch Station


    I am writing this follow-up message to report that we completed the task the Dwarfs gave us of sneaking up on one of these Camp commanders in the Fil Gashan region and killing him. The dwarfs wanted us to do this because they thought it would make all of the other commanders afraid for their lives, even though they were surrounded by all sorts of troops. Furthermore, we did it by dressing up as orcs ourselfs, so that the orcs may be given reason to fear that the raids are coming from rival orc camps rather than from the dwarfs. Hopefully, they will fight among themselves and not bother the dwarfs until the dwarfs can grow quite a bit stronger.

    I spent a few days going over my maps and notes so as to plot a path through an Orcan camp that had the leastest chance of getting us eaten. And then we mustered and got ready to go. I am trying to recall who was with us on this adventure. I know that Sagla and Thorfaniel were there . . . the tall folks are conspicuous to say the least. And Roy was with us. I remember him standing on my foot. I am thinking that Thirdal was there, though I am not certain iffen I am recalling him from this patrol or the next one, which was simply a hunt to go out and slay as many orcs was possible with Alphred, Roy, Medloth, and Thorfaniel.

    I think Thirdal was with us. And Bohimli. There were three dwarfs, that is for certain, but there's a lot of dwarfs with our company here in Moria, as is fitting.

    The first task was to get past a sentry what was watching the hallway we had to walk down. One of the things that I had learned in my trainings as a minstrel is how to play a little song what is distracting to orcs and causes them not to pay so much attention to what is happening around them. So, I put this song of distraction in the sentry's ear, then we walked past and up a flight of stairs and out of sight of the sentry 'fore his attention returned to his job.

    The next step was to jump down from a ledge into a room where there were orcs milling about. I jumped down first, and got my foot caught in a pile of rubble when a rock shifted and trapped me . . . and then Roy landed right atop of me. It was a struggle getting us free. And we didn't even have our orc uniforms on yet so as any orcs what came upon us would certainly see that we were hobbits, dwarfs, men, and elfs rather than orcs and goblins. Fortunately, we got free without being spotted.

    The next part of our plan was to ambush a group of orcs and take their uniforms. We found some milling about nearby and Sagla began the ambush by making a sound what caused the orcs to come into our darkened corner to investigate. We ambushed them and quickly brought them down. There was enough orcs that each of us got our own uniform - though they did fit poorly and were prone to fall off.

    Then came the first really dangerous part, where we had to sneak down a hallway and through a mess hall filled to the brim with hungry orcs so as we could get into the back rooms. This, we were able to do without much trouble at all. We just walked through nice and casual - like we were some kind of orc patrol returning from our patrolling.

    However, the orc cook and kitchen staff seem to have noticed something odd about us as we passed through. The next thing we knew, the orc cook had a frying pan and bashed Thorfaniel along side of the head that knocked her out fully and the cook and the staff grabbed what kitchen utensils they could to begin to dismember us for supper. We made quite a bit of noise, but I am thinking that it is not so much uncommon for orcs to get into scuffles with other orcs - particular orcs what did not like what the cook had prepared for them and a cook prone to take insults poorly.

    We left the cooking staff upon the kitchen floor and went further into the maze of hallways and rooms that made up the back part of the campsite.

    One of the sentries saw us and we could not stop him in time afore he set off an alarm and a whole herd of orcs came galloping at us. One of them was an orc who had lead his squad into practicing maneuvers what were much like our fellowship maneuvers. Also, like our fellowship maneuvers, they have a weakness in that iffen it were possible to stun one or more of the villains it would disrupt the maneuver and make it much less powerful. So, whenever we saw that they were setting up one of their maneuvers, we would do our best to trip, whallup, frighten, or distract them so they couldn't complete the maneuver. It worked quite well.

    This gave us a new set of uniforms we could use - ones that were befitting of the orcs living in the back rooms so as we would not be seen as front-room orcs intruding where we did not belong. Orcs are territorial in that way. We put on the new uniforms.

    On my maps, I had plotted that we needed to climb some stairs, walk past another sentry, and pass into a hallway beyond. And so I lead the way - since I knew the maps - though I was trembling the whole way as I expected a orc to run a spear or sword through me at the slightest provocation - me being obviously a weak and easily bullied goblin - though I did have some burly friends right behind me.

    We made it past and into a hallway where there were a couple of orcs on patrol. I closed the door to this passage and told the others that we had best kill the patrols, and so we dispatched them and stuffed their bodies into a corner.

    There was an officer with a key to the General's quarters just ahead. By my map, it was through a door and was the first door on the right. Only, two orcs stood guard across the way and a sentry was patrolling about. We had our uniforms back on, so I lead the group into that first room on the right and, lo and behold, the second floor commander was right there with a couple of his lieutenants discussing battle plans. They were sure surprised to see us!

    I shut the door so as those beyond won't pay attention to the scuffle. These were some of the toughest orcs about and I will not pretend that this was not a difficult fight. However, we were able to hold our own and, in a short while, the three orcs lay dead and I found the key we needed to reach the General.

    Before we left, I figured we needed to do something about them two orc guards across the way. I watched the sentry come and go, then stepped made a noise that drew the two guard orcs into the room to investigate. Then we ambushed them. After slaying the floor commander and his two lieutenants, defeating a couple of door guards was not so difficult. We added their bodies to the pile. Then, we needed to get to the General.

    By my map, we needed to return back whence we came, past the sentry, and up to the top floor of the camp. I am afraid I did a poor job of preparing the others for where we were supposed to go, and they ended up travelling a bit of a ways down a wrong hallway, all with an increased chance that the orc sentry would recognize we were not orcs and goblins. But we managed to get past them up to the third floor, where we defeated a couple of door guards.

    It was now a straight shot down the hallway to the General's quarters. I was standing there mulling about how we were going to sneak past four sentries and bunches of other guards without alerting them when Sagla suggested that we simply run and make a break for it and not give them any time to react. The next thing I knew we were running down the hallway at a full sprint. I was grabbing on to the parts of my goblin uniform to prevent them from flying off and me standing there as a hobbit in the middle of what must have been near to two dozen orcs. Sagla proved to be right, though, and we ended up in the General's quarters, panting and out of breath while the General himself looked down upon us questioning why these orcs had come bursting into his room unannounced.

    I closed the doors softly behind us while Sagla stepped forward and introduced herself to the Orc general. And the battling commenced.

    Because of our earlier adventures, we had learned their tactics and we were getting much better and battling these orcs. We had defeated four of the Orc camp commanders in the past weeks and this was our fifth victory against them. We did so while only Thorfaniel was knocked out of the fight for a bit. To be honest, Thorfaniel has been feeling under the weather for a few days now - we suspect that it may have been something she ate. Mayhaps the illness and the heat of the fight together got the better of her and she was out for a while. But, after a bit of rest, she got back to her feet and joined the fighting.

    Lo and behold, we defeated the commander, just as the dwarfs had asked us to do.

    From that point on, we went on a patrol for a bit - finding what gatherings of orcs we could and battling them. They had no leader now - nobody to organize them - so we did not see them as being much of a threat.

    And so we were able to meet the Dwarf's challenge yet again.

    After the battling, Sagla and Thorfaniel got to complaining that these ventures into Fil Gashan were getting tedious. It was certainly the case that it would take us a good long while to work our way through all 200 or so camps with all of their orcs - and we were bound to mess up eventually and unite the Orcs against the dwarfs rather than having them battle each other. Since I discovered that there were so many orcs, I had gone back to the 21st Hall to tell the dwarfs that we won't be able to put much of a dent at all in the orc numbers. They told me that they were working on another plan, and I passed that news on to Sagla and Thorfaniel in the hopes that it would satisfy them some. I am waiting now for the dwarfs of the 21st Hall to summons us back for their new planl.

    I will report to you as to what is decided.

    Until then, I remain,

    Bounder Hedgerow Shrewburrow

    We have six Eclairians who have finished the Challenge, and near to 20 who have completed all of the quests. Some are nearing the end of completing their deeds as well, so there is a question of whether it may be time to move on.

    With the path ahead dominated by landscape roleplaying, there seems to be some interest in leaving the slayer deeds undone and spending the next few weeks with some early roleplay, followed by telling "stories" of past adventures to finish up the session and to get people help completing previous tasks and deeds. We will stay at Fil Gashan at least one more weekend while we discuss options.

    The options are:

    (1) Stay at Fil Gashan for a few more weeks while folks finish up their slayer deeds.

    (2) Return to the 21st Hall and start roleplaying our way through the Epic Story line instead, stopping the roleplay after an hour or so to gather about the camp fire and tell stories about Fil Gashan (and, perhaps, other places where players want to complete prior tasks - perhaps with an eye to completing deeds and getting virtue points, or collecting marks and medallions for use on legendary items).

    Also of note: On Sunday, several of us (Sagla, Thirdal, Thorfaniel, Alphred, Kaeylea) had a long (2-hour) discussion on legendary items. We covered relics, legacies, scrolls, crystals, shards, forging, reforging, scrolls of empowerment, scrolls of the delving, marks, medallions, melding, crafted relics, the building and breaking of spare Lis, LIXP, first, second, and third ages, and the like. It occurred to me that others may have regretted missing it - and that perhaps we should have another such discussion.

    Don't be afraid to bring up any questions you may have. One of the merits of Club Éclair is that, since we spend so much time at each level rather than rushing through, we have an opportunity to learn things and actually make use of them that otherwise get buried in the rush to the level cap.

    Let me know what you think.
    Last edited by Tiempko; Jul 01 2019 at 10:54 AM.
    Meadowlarke Sweetweed on Landroval. Also nephews and Bounders Ayrhawk, Wrennsong, and Little Meadowlark Sweetweed
    Club Eclair roleplaying group working our way through Volume II - we will be spending 2019 working our way through the Moria Instances (Alphred Troute, Hedgerow Shrewburrow). https://www.lotro.com/forums/showthr...-II-Into-Moria

  2. #102

    ((Club Eclair)) Too Many Orcs


    Well, we are headed back to the 21st Hall.

    There are far too many orcs for us to handle here. There's mention that Bori back at the Chamber of Leadership has another plan, and so we are heading back to hear the plan and to see what we can do to help.

    I paid one last visit to the orcs of Fil Gashan before leaving - along with the company of Jaytull, Medloth, Thorfaniel, Bohimli, and Fraori. Thirdal was about, but he was having problems with his leg and opted to stay back, ready for us to call upon him iffen we needed reinforcements. I have to do him a special favor some time.

    We opted to try to meet the Dwarf challenge of slaying one of the camp generals without overly alarming the soldiers he has guarding him - to cause the other camp commanders to be a little less at ease. I had talked to Hedgerow, who had worked out a precise mapping of how to get to the commander while disturbing as few orcs as possible - including picking up a key from one of the sub commanders. He impressed on me that his instructions had to be followed to the letter or we would be discovered and the gig would be up.

    We were fortunate to have Jaytull around has he was able to put a song in the ear of the first Orc sentry which prevented him from noticing us as we snucked past. You know how you get a tune in your ear and you just can't get it cleared out and it just sticks there repeating and repeating? Jaytull can put a song in an orc's ear, and he gets so focused on it that he can't think straight. That was when we stealthed past.

    Next, it was one step at a time . . . slay a bunch of orcs . . . take their uniforms . . . sneak through the kitchen . . . kill the kitchen staff . . . sneak to the sub-commander's room . . . kill the sub-commander and take his key . . . sneak upstairs . . . slay the General.

    The battle against the general was a beast! Jaytull got roasted and was off dealing with some serious burns right away. He was the only one among us who can properly tend to a casualty in a fight and get them on their feet - something he can't do for himself. So, the battle became a contest to outlast the enemy.

    I don't recall when folks got knocked out of the fight. I just noticed our numbers slowly dwindling. Fraori, Bohimli, and Thorfaniel - one by one - went down. But, we were wearing down the enemy as well.

    I didn't notice who exactly was still in the fight until it was down to Medloth and me. Medloth was trying to distract the Fang - who is the deadliest of the villains - while I sought to battle the General and take him out of the fight. I was running about . . . throwing my javalins and spears at the General and trying to get away before he closed the distance between us. Then . . . I don't know what happened . . . I slipped on some oil or stepped into a trap. However it happened, I fell, and before I could regain my feet the General was upon me. He gave me a good swift kick and I could scarce breathe. Medloth came running over when she saw me in trouble and she tore into the General. She caught the General with a couple of rakes across his chest and the General was down. When that happened, the General's aides lost their will to fight.

    Well, once the General was taken care of, we then went out and about and took on the rest of the orcs. They sent messages to the General wondering what to do . . . but the General was no more. That made them fearful.

    There was the time Medloth fell off of a bridge into the lunch room. There he was . . . alone . . . in hostile orc territory. So, she opted to just return to us as quickly as possible. Bears are not stealthy, so she got noticed easily enough and had a whole train of orcs on her tail by the time she returned to us. That was one of the bigger battles of the evening, but we dealth with well over a dozen orcs without a loss.

    We agreed that it was a good last day of orc hunting, and it was time to pack up and return to the 21st Hall.

    You don't need to address your letters differently. They all go to the 21st Hall anyways, and the dwarfs there know where to find me.

    I do hope that Bori has a fitting plan. "Charge into the orc-infested depths of Moria and battle 20,000 orcs living there" just does not strike me as something that has any hope of turning out well for us in the long run.

    I'll let you know when I learn more.

    Alphred Troute

    We are opting to leave Fil Gashan and the other instances behind and pick up the epic quests where we left off.

    Week of July 13: We will muster at the 21st Hall. We will be tasked with getting help from the other dwarfs, so we will spend a half hour or so milling about the 21st Hall, then we will gather at the Chamber of Leadership to tell stories of our adventures in Fil Gashan. There's still folks who want to try the Challenge. Twelve of us have made it through, so quite a few have not yet. (It's not vital for any quests or deeds . . . just bragging rights.)

    Week of July 20: We will muster at Orc Watch. As a part of Bori's plan, we will have to make a patrol about the Redhorn Lodes. I am thinking that we can pass by the Grand Stairs and pay a visit there. I hear there's a few folks who could still stand to pick up a few wargs and goblins.

    Week of July 27: We will muster at the 21st Hall. We are going to Zud-Melek. This is new territory so, as per tradition, we march into a new territory the first time we enter for adventure purposes. We have a quest to work on and, once we get there, we will get other landscape quests as well.

    August: We will be exploring the new region of Zud-Melek. This could take a few weeks. During that time, we will also finish the relevant part of the epic story line and return to the 21st Hall. There are actually the last two elements of the Redhorn Lode explorer deeds to finish up while we are in the area - they can only be approached from this direction. And the 16th Hall is here. We will need to decide if we want to enter now or later.

    We will reach a Zud-Melek quest that will send us outside. I would argue for leaving that quest undone and returning to the 21st Hall at that time to continue with the epic story line. "I'd like to go outside, but there are dwarfs here who are needing our help and we must finish our chores here first." We will then turn our backs to the gate and head back to the 21st Hall. The point is to go outside again when the epic quests and the landscape quests both are sending us out there. This will happen at the start of Book VI.
    Meadowlarke Sweetweed on Landroval. Also nephews and Bounders Ayrhawk, Wrennsong, and Little Meadowlark Sweetweed
    Club Eclair roleplaying group working our way through Volume II - we will be spending 2019 working our way through the Moria Instances (Alphred Troute, Hedgerow Shrewburrow). https://www.lotro.com/forums/showthr...-II-Into-Moria

  3. #103
    Join Date
    Nov 2011

    Erikin, Diary Entry 120 ((Fil Gashan))

    Dear diary,

    when we returned to Anazarmekhem, the Generals at the table had another mission for us. It was to infiltrate Fil Gashan, a stronghold of the orcs in the Flaming Deeps, dispatch the leader of the orcs there and look for any orders or other pieces of information we may find about their plans. The leader is a General named Talug and he is rumored to be the right hand of Mazog, Chieftain of the orcs in Moria, and defeating him and his troops would deal a heavy blow to any plans the orcs may have.

    The place didn't look too much from the outside, just a normal door and no guards to be seen. Hedge speculated that this was not the main entrance, but rather a secret dwarven backdoor that the orcs have no knowledge about. But as we entered, we found that Fil Gashan is a military camp teeming with orcs. We had cleared out numerous orc camps before, but this was by far the biggest of them all. Hedge had heard there may be 150 to 200 orcs inside, maybe more.

    And they were vigilant. We saw the first of many alarm bells in a room at the end of the side tunnel we came through, a large bell hanging from a wooden tripod, an orc sentry sitting in front of it. I was thinking that this alarm system was not set up because the orcs were worried about the dwarves, but more about the other orc tribes they are at war with, like the White Hand orcs or the Mordor orcs. But that didn't matter much, for as soon as the sentry noticed us, he jumped up, shouted "Intruders! Get them!", and rang the bell. And immediately a full squad of orcs came running at us. We defeated them handily, and then, silence. I listened, but no more orc cries. Then Hedge pulled out the pins which held the bell in place, and it fell to the ground with a loud clang. I feared that would now alert all the 200 orcs and they'd come storming in on us, but it didn't happen.

    Cautiously, we made our way further in, peeking around every corner. There were corridors leading in various directions, orc patrols everywhere and more bells. The orcs were wearing armor, and Hedge had the idea (or he was told by some dwarves about this) to use their armor to disguise ourselves as orcs. So we dragged some of the dead orcs into a corner, undressed them and put on their filthy outfits. I wasn't too convinced. I think we didn't look too much like orcs.

    Hedge looked more like a goblin, while Sagla looked like a tall Uruk-hai. But at least we smelled like them, ha! And we could indeed fool some of them, they even greeted us, or called us "Sir" and told us it's not safe here, because there are intruders! The rest of us stood back a bit, while Hedge bravely walked forward to one of the bells and disabled it. But the orc standing nearby didn't like that, took a closer look, then screamed: "You're not one of us! To arms!" He wanted to sound the alarm, but the bell was gone, so he wailed "The alarm doesn't work!", ha! We still had to fend off a few nearby orcs though.

    We found several chambers with stinking bunk beds, and orcs sleeping, carving spears or eating. Speaking of eating. At the end of one hallway we came to a mess hall. Many orcs were sitting there, devouring their meals at crude stone tables. Must have been thirty at least, maybe close to fifty. Hedge had the idea to walk right through it and sneak by them, wearing our uniforms. Again, I was not convinced, we would be behind enemy lines and if something happens, we would have to get past all these orcs to get out.

    Well, we tried anyways, and then a loose button fell off Hedge's uniform and it split open. An orc sitting at a nearby table eyed him supiciously, then he yelled: "You are no orcs! Intruders!" and next thing I knew was they were all over us. We grouped together, fighting back to back in the middle of a pile of orcs, and it was a gory, bloody massacre as we slaughtered them all. They were not too strong, maybe fresh recruits and not well-trained fighters yet.

    When the battle was over, the mess hall was filled with dead bodies, and then the cook showed up! He saw the mess in his mess hall, called even more orcs to fight and joined himself. He wore a blood-stained apron and wielded a large butcher's knife and a searing-hot frying pan. He was totally enraged, shouting he'd make minced meat out of us, ha! Maybe we should have told him that we liked his dishes to flatter him and make him leave. He was pretty strong for a cook, but in the end we made minced meat out of him, ha!

    Behind the mess hall, stairs were leading up. Where the lower floor had the regular troops' quarters, here were the officers' quarters. Luckily, the orcs here were unaware of what had happened downstairs, and there weren't that many. We found several single rooms, some empty, in some a lone lieutenant, or whatever orc-ranks they have. In the corridors however we had to fight some patrols led by an officer and they seemed to have learned and practiced some manoeuvers, just like we had. The were pretty adept at it, and sometimes it felt they did even better on their manoeuvers than we did on ours. So we had to be on our toes and interrupt them, otherwise they could hurt us pretty badly.

    Behind one door, in a room full of barrels, we found an even stronger commander and his personal guard, two lieutenants who looked like twins. He ordered his guards to lock the door, apparently he was certain to defeat us and didn't want us to get away. It was a tough fight. I was knocked out once when I attacked him, his guards were strong and muscular and very skilled and quick on their manoeuvers. The commander used several different weapons too, a blade spread with poison or a flaming axe. After we defeated them, we found a key in a chest and in a nearby chamber several papers - the war plans the dwarves had asked us to bring back.

    The key opened a door on the third floor, the command quarters, where we finally, at the end of yet another long hallway full of orcs, found the general the dwarves wanted dead. We were pretty wary and exhausted by now, but there was no turning back now. The General was big, wearing a full-body armor made of hard metal plates, a heavy shield and a large sword. He was only accompanied by two goblins and walked about slowly and clumsily, so I thought this was not going to be a big deal. But by Durin, was I wrong! Those two goblins were quite elite and problematic. A nimble archer who used flaming arrows and struck fast and hard and laid down traps, the other doing some nasty tricks with fire and hot oil. Plus, the General's armor withstood all our blows, we just could not harm him at all.

    Luckily, he was pretty slow and could hardly follow us in this heavy suit of armor he wore. He also didn't seem to see too well, for he tripped in one of the traps laid down by the archer-goblin, and when he was on his knees we beat him up a bit before he got back up. He either followed Sagla or Thorcundo, and while I chased after the archer-goblin, they went over to another of the traps, into which the General promptly stepped. After a while, he seemed to grow tired of this and his clumsiness and stripped off his armor. Still carried his shield though which he skillfully used to block all our blows. Plus, we still had to deal with the nasty goblins, who had knocked down several of us by now.

    We killed the one with the fiery tricks right next to the General, and it accidentally set his master on fire. He roared in anger and in pain and we noticed the smell of burnt flesh, when yet another goblin stormed in. We lured that one next to the General again, killed it and again the General roared, suffering from severe burns. He threw away his shield, and now he was fast and dangerous, but also vulnerable, and we cut him down in the end. Without his armor and shield, he wasn't too much a problem actually, and then we also managed to kill the ominous archer-goblin.

    Phew! This General and his goblins were definitely worthy opponents and I'd go so far as to say the strongest orc we've ever fought. No wonder he was Mazog's right hand and I hope Mazog doesn't have more right hands. Or more of these elite goblins for that matter. Two or three orcs of his caliber plus a few of these goblins may even defeat our group of experienced battlers.

    On his body, we found a message he had written to Mazog. It took a while to decipher it, but when we did we learned it was about Krankluk, the one who ran the forges. He was uneasy about him, writing that something is "off" with that Uruk. And that they should pay attention to troops disappearing into the deeper and darker parts of Moria. He ended with "There might be something more than mushrooms there". So Mazog and his orcs have also noticed something odd there and they are not allied with whatever that is and may also fear it. I have a feeling we will soon be sent down there to investigate further.

    But first, we will return to the Twenty-first Hall. Maybe Bosi has by now found out where Mazog is.

  4. #104
    I just want to remind folks . . . I update "Where we are at" and "Where we are going" at the top of the very first post in this thread . . . page 1, post 1 . . . every week.

    If anybody wants to know where we are at, and where we are going, can go there and see, even if I have not yet posted anything here.
    Meadowlarke Sweetweed on Landroval. Also nephews and Bounders Ayrhawk, Wrennsong, and Little Meadowlark Sweetweed
    Club Eclair roleplaying group working our way through Volume II - we will be spending 2019 working our way through the Moria Instances (Alphred Troute, Hedgerow Shrewburrow). https://www.lotro.com/forums/showthr...-II-Into-Moria

  5. #105

    ((Club Eclair II) Fetching Supplies

    To: Daffodilia Wildfeet
    Chief, Bounders of the Shire – Addernotch Station


    I will have you know that we had a surprise yesterday when Bounder Kestril showed up. Well, I wasn’t surprised. I wasn’t even there. She showed up at Orc Watch, where Alphred and Medloth were organizing themselves for some training. Kestril showed up all of the sudden and went with them on the training. From what I hear, she is well. It is a pleasure to see her again.

    There’s still more than a dozen of us here in Moria battling the orcs. Bori has this daring plan to eliminate the leader of the White Hand orcs. He’s sending a part of us out to create a diversion and to draw the main body of orcs away, at which time Bori and a small group will use secret Dwarf passages to attack where Bori thinks their chief orc is hiding. We haven’t seen this chief Orc so Bori is guessing that he don’t like to put himself in danger too much and will be staying at his stronghold while sending soldiers to defend against the diversion. Erikin were saying the same thing before Bori figured it out – the part about the White Hand Orc chief not being inclined to share the fates of his soldiers.

    We started off by raiding some orc camps within the Redhorn Lodes in order to pick up some materials that Bori thought would be useful – including several barrels of black powder. Erikin, Thirdal, and Roy were with us to handle the kegs of black powder. I don’t like to touch the stuff. It’s soaked through in dark magics. But the dwarfs seem to be able to handle it. They seem to think of it as just another mining tool.

    We even visited the Grand Stairs while we were there . . . me and Sagla and Erikin and Bohunc and Thirdal and Galdhron. The dwarfs had abandoned it since we were there last and drew up the draw bridge, as they did not have the dwarfs to hold it. But, we figured it would be worthwhile to pass through teach them that they ought to be sleeping with one eye open as the Eclairians are not to be trifled with. Then we returned to the 21st Hall with the bounty that Bori wanted us to collect.

    The next thing we need to do is to scout out a path of attack that would likely draw the most soldiers away from the White Hand Chief orc. For that end, we are heading off to the east, into a region we have not seen before called Nud-melek. Truth be told, the day after we got back to the Twenty-First Hall to bring back several packs of supplies we took from the orcs - including our black powder - I took a venture by myself just to check my maps and find a proper way there. I found the way we will be using and put a proper mark on my maps for the route, but I did not go any further. I have my hobbit sense! I am not wandering off into a new region by my lonesome!

    By my maps, I am thinking that we should be able to head south once we get to Nud-melek and find a path what takes us into the Redhorn Lodes. And, to the North, there ought to be a passage that connects to the cave of the bat folks. I hope the others don't think it is too far out of our way to go with me as I get our maps built up proper. It does help folks to not get lost. Though one of the difficulties about this place is the upness and the downness. Just because two places look like they are near each other, they may be quite far from each other once you count the ups and downs.

    Well, that is what I hope to see when we go on our patrol. Folks are packing up, getting supplies ready, sharpening weapons and repairing armours. The several months we spent battling orcs in huge battles in the Grand Stairs, Forges of Khazad-dum, and Fil Gashan, has left us battered and worn. It's nice to be in a nice bed for once - even if dwarf beds are a bit hard and dwarf's snore would drown the sound of a tree falling in the woods. And the beds are near a nice warm fire, with lots of food. It'll be hard to leave, with travel rations and a bed of hard stone in the deep darks of Moria once again.

    We'll be gone for a bit, I think, depending on how well the mappings and the scoutings are going. It's hard to predict these things. Not to worry, we will keep in touch. And the dwarfs even have a lookout off in that direction for us to meet up with.

    I will keep you informed as always.

    Bounder Hedgerow Shrewburrow

    In our next exciting episode, we will muster at the Chamber of Leadership to start our scouting of a whole new region. There's a dwarf just inside the region that will start us on a landscape quest chain that we can begin working on as we complete new quests and deeds.

    Hedgerow is going to bug folks about going south and looking for passage to the Redhorn Lodes. There is a couple of items on the Redhorn Lodes explorer deed that we need to finish up (a few more virtue XP to pick up). We will see how it fits in, but I do think it will be a bit of a digression. Hedgerow will be anxious to get the passage on his map, though. It would be tragic to have an important passage in Moria that did not get drawn onto his map.

    The very last quest in the Nud-melek chain is "Friends at the Age", which sends the group outside. As mentioned earlier, I'd like to return to the 21st Hall to continue the epic quest line, then make the trip outside once we get the Epic quest Volume II, Book 6, Chapter 1, where Bori will send us out to talk to the elves as well. Then we will pack up and head for the east gate.
    Meadowlarke Sweetweed on Landroval. Also nephews and Bounders Ayrhawk, Wrennsong, and Little Meadowlark Sweetweed
    Club Eclair roleplaying group working our way through Volume II - we will be spending 2019 working our way through the Moria Instances (Alphred Troute, Hedgerow Shrewburrow). https://www.lotro.com/forums/showthr...-II-Into-Moria

  6. #106

    Another slumber

    From the journal of Thalachon. Guard of the Seventh Gate of Gondolin.

    I awoke to the curious stares of several unfamiliar dwarves. The room was familiar, my weapons and armor still where I left them but something felt…….off. I remember returning to the 21st hall to replenish supplies and see to my equipment. I had been offered a small room, out of the way from dwarven activities, to rest and prepare from my return trip to the fiery deeps. Why then were these dwarves here, and looking at me with such concern?

    It has been six weeks. Six weeks!!! One of the dwarves, a healer named Cordin, explained I had been asleep for over a month. I had been found in my bed when it was noticed nobody had entered or exited the room in some time. They had been unable to wake me and set a guard, as well as sending for healers and others that may have knowledge of my strange affliction. I wonder if word has made it back to Lord Elrond. I suspect this “fatigue” is residual from my previous wounds. Perhaps my exertion in the forge battles has caused a relapse of sorts. If that is the case, I shall have to be mindful of my activities, or at least ensure I only find rest in friendly locations.

    There is word that the Eclarians have cleared the forges, as well as other orc strongholds in the deeps of Moria. I hope my absence has not caused the death of any good warriors. I shall have to search them out once again. Luck is with me this time. Messages have been received indicating their arrival at the Orc Watch. I remember a path leading towards this outpost. Once I have assuaged the fears of Cordin, that I am fit for travel, I will attempt to rejoin the group.

    I've had a lot of things going on in RL in the past months so I was unable to make any adventures. Things are still kind of in flux but I should be able to make the Monday patrols for at least the next few weeks. Thankfully you guys move at a pace where a few weeks isn't hard to make up. See you guys in-game soon, hopefully.

  7. #107
    Quote Originally Posted by Swanee View Post
    From the journal of Thalachon. Guard of the Seventh Gate of Gondolin.

    I've had a lot of things going on in RL in the past months so I was unable to make any adventures. Things are still kind of in flux but I should be able to make the Monday patrols for at least the next few weeks. Thankfully you guys move at a pace where a few weeks isn't hard to make up. See you guys in-game soon, hopefully.

    We have a rule, called the Bounders' Rule (since it originated in the Bounders of the Shire kinship, where my characters belong) that says, "Home and family come first". It recognizes that this is a game and the real world is for living, so nobody ever needs to say sorries for giving priority to the real world.

    Or, as Chief Meadowlarke tells each new Bounder recruit, "We don't pay nothing, so iffen you need time to take care of home and family, by all means, do so. We wouldn't be fit to be protecting the ways and traditions of the Shire iffen we commanded Bounders to abandon home and family, now, would we?"

    We eagerly await your return. You have been missed.

    Oh, and a few folks typically show up Sundays at 10:00 for the purpose of helping folks who return to catch up on things missed that they can't accomplish solo - or for skirmish or siege training if nobody needs catching-up help.
    Meadowlarke Sweetweed on Landroval. Also nephews and Bounders Ayrhawk, Wrennsong, and Little Meadowlark Sweetweed
    Club Eclair roleplaying group working our way through Volume II - we will be spending 2019 working our way through the Moria Instances (Alphred Troute, Hedgerow Shrewburrow). https://www.lotro.com/forums/showthr...-II-Into-Moria

  8. #108

    ((Club Eclair)) No Sunshine

    To: Daffodilia Wildfeet
    Chief, Bounders of the Shire - Addernotch Station


    We are changing our plans.

    We left a couple of days ago with the intent of spending some time scouting and exploring Nud-melek, in advance of Bori’s daring plan. Bori wants to launch an attack on Nud-melek, so that the chief of the White Hand orcs in the Redhorn Lodes will send reinforcements, and then he can be slain. Bori and Thorcundo are going to do the slaying.

    We did the scouting. We found the path to use to reach the orcs. Gad, you should see this place. It is like an underground forest with trees 500 feet tall and its high branches holding up the roof. Only, the trees are carved out of stone. It is the hugest room I have seen here - larger even than the 21st Hall. But it is filled with villainy. Orcs, goblins warg riders, cave bears, glowy worms, flappies . . . they are everywhere. We tried to give some illumination to the place by lighting the fires along the north wall, but the fires burned out quickly and the room again became dark. Not wholly dark - there were glowy crystals about. But dark, nonetheless.

    And steps! We actually showed up at Nud-Melek on a platform about equal to the tops of the trees. And then we had to climb down . . . and down . . . and further down . . . and more down . . . and down some more . . . before we even stepped into the room.

    The route to the Orcan hallways was on the far corner, so we headed in that direction. To get there, we had to cross a rickety old bridge. It weren't dwarf construction. It was something the orcs had built, and it had the look and feel of orc construction - like it would collapse at any moment and spill me into the river of lava below.

    Gad, I was half way across the bridge when the dwarfs decided they needed to test its sturdiness by jumping up and down. Erikin, Thirdal, and Thorcundo were all with us. Roy was off visiting kinfolk and Galdhron went travelling as well - I think back to Eregion to talk to the elfs. Anyways, with the dwarfs jumping about, I grabbed on as best I could and commanded them to stop. They just laughed. Erikin thought it was funny. I don't see how deep-fried hobbit is the least bit funny.

    It was just past this that we found the Orcan passage. We did some exploring and made sure that the diversion had a hope of success - which it did. A proper attack group will be a real threat.

    And then we found we had more reason to return to the 21st Hall than to continue our explorations of Nud-melek. We found plans to some special kind of torch that we wanted to give the dwarfs, and wanted to report our findings to Bori.

    So we did.

    Which meant, of course, climbing all of them steps. Imagine if there were steps going up on the outside of the Stock Tower . . . and then imagine that the Stock Tower were five times its height. That's what we got to climb to get back to the 21st Hall.

    Once there, it was decided that we should be launching Bori's daring plan sooner rather than later.

    As I said, Thorcundo will be heading out with Bori. While they are gone, the rest of us are going to muster and return to Nud-melek. We will do what harms we can the orcs there and, hopefully, draw reinforcements out of the Redhorn Lodes.

    Another patrol what went out - consisting of Alphred, Jaytull, and Fraori, are telling us that we won't be able to reach the east side of Moria. They said that they came across a huge canyon that went down into total darkness with a massive stone bridge constructing it. Only, the bridge was broken. Jaytull said that it was broken just recently, too, as the charring and soot upon the bridge was fresh. Alphred said that the part that was broken had the sparkle of a rock that was just recently split.

    But it does not matter whether the bridge was destroyed last week or last month, the canyon - they tell us - is so vast, that there is no hope of crossing it. And so we will not be crossing that way, as we had hoped.

    I am sad . . . as I so wanted to see the sunshine again.

    Bounder Hedgerow Shrewburrow

    As mentioned, after adventuring through Nud-melek, we found that it made more sense to return to the 21st Hall.

    August 3, 5: We will be mustering at the 21st Hall to launch diversionary attacks into Nud-melek. We will enter Nud-melek and patrol to the east, reaching the broken bridge and battling the orcs there to draw orcs out of the Redhorn Lodes. When we are done, we will return to the 21st Hall.

    August 10, 12: We need to decide if we are going to return to Nud-melek again or, instead, head west and work on the epic quest line. I am proposing that we advance the epic quest line, and finish our explorations of Nud-melek when the epic quests send us east to find a way to get to the east gate and out into the land of the elfs beyond.

    Books IV and V of the epic chain are going to be hard to put into an entertaining story. It involves several cases in which you travel half way across Moria just to talk to somebody or to perform a simple quest in a low-level region we have already explored at Level 51. So, seriously deficient in entertainment value. Exceptions being the Drowned Treasury fellowship instance at the end of Book IV, and the three skirmishes at the end of Book V. Oh well, it is not the end of the world. Or is it?

    ADDENDUM: I think I got it. I went through Book IV and I think I have figured out a way of presenting the story in an entertaining fashion. We will have an opportunity to try a turtle hunt while we are at it. When I know the precise day, I may see if we can find some reinforcements. Book V returns us to Nud-Melek, followed by three skirmishes, so that should not be a problem.
    Last edited by Tiempko; Jul 31 2019 at 01:37 PM.
    Meadowlarke Sweetweed on Landroval. Also nephews and Bounders Ayrhawk, Wrennsong, and Little Meadowlark Sweetweed
    Club Eclair roleplaying group working our way through Volume II - we will be spending 2019 working our way through the Moria Instances (Alphred Troute, Hedgerow Shrewburrow). https://www.lotro.com/forums/showthr...-II-Into-Moria

  9. #109

    ((Club Eclair)) Slaying the White Hand Leader


    I have had a good couple of weeks here in Moria. Unexpectedly, it seems that this Chamber of Leadership has become our home for a while. We’ve been patrolling out into an area called Nud-melek and, even though it is a bit of a walk, it is close enough that we get to return to the 21st Hall, with its beds and warm fires and abundant food when we are done.

    This is where I am at now. I am in a large room with bunk beds on one side, sitting at a table before a roaring fire, with a loaf of bread and some cheese and some ale sitting before me.

    That's not to say that we are not doing work. Twice now I have buckled on my shield and headed out to Nud-melek for a patrol; once with Jaytull and Fraori and once with Thorcundo. Thorcundo wanted to get some practice in as he was about to go out on a dangerous mission.

    You see, Bori came up with this daring plan to defeat the leader of the White Orcs. He learned that the leader was in the Redhorn Lodes and exactly where to find him. Bori didn't want to take a whole army with him as that would alert the orcs and the leader would no-doubt flee. However, Bori felt that he and one other orc could get to the leader without being seen and then slay him and leave the orcs without a leader.

    Things didn't go fully to plan, but that would be to get ahead of my story.

    Thorcundo was feeling anxious about the trip so he and I went to Nud-melek just to get our mind off of what was about to happen. We walked about for a bit - coming upon a broken bridge and attacking some of the orcs there. It was in the area that Jaytull and Fraori and I had reached the day before.

    Well, then came the day for making good on Bori's daring plan. I stayed behind at the 21st Hall ready to be summoned to whomever might be in need of help, though it turned out that I wasn't needed and ended up staying here for nothing. First, Sagla left, with Thorfaniel, Hedgerow, Wandrin, Erikin, and Bohimli - I think. They were going to attack an Orcan stronghold off in Nud-melek. The hope was that the leader would send some of his orcs from the Redhorn Lodes to reinforce them in Nud-melek, and this would clear the way for Bori and Thorcundo to reach the white hand leader.

    A couple of hours after Sagla and her group had left, Thorcundo and Bori headed off for the Redhorn Lodes. And it was all I could do but wait and see which group made it alive, or which summoned me to come to their aid.

    It was a long wait, during which I stood around fully ready for battle with a goat saddled and ready to ride at the first hint of need.

    I didn't hear anything for the longest time.

    Then . . . in came Bori and Thorcundo on their goats, cheering and celebrating their victory. It seems the assault went just as expected. The pair were sneaking their way across the Rednorn Lodes when, of a sudden, news reached the orcs of fighting in Nud-Melek and off they went to join the fray. Leaving the route clear for them to reach the White Hand leader. Thorcundo said he weren't even a threat. Apparently, he'd been counting on his soldiers to defend him and gotten soft in the ways of combat. Either way, they slew the leader and returned. Only, they did tell us that the leader reported on a greater power in Moria. The claim here is that he was saying this to save his life, but the way the story is told this was not how he said it.

    Sagla's squad came back a bit later - a bit worn and ragged but all in one piece. When they launched their diversion, they saw no signs of the orcs calling for reinforcements or summoning any aid. They kept pushing their way down a long hallway in the hopes that they could inspire the orcs to send to the Redhorn Lodes for reinforcements. They were debating the wisdom of Bori's plan as they were in a passageway beyond the north side of Nud-melek and the Redhorn Lodes were to the south. They kept pressing further and further in. Then, they discovered the passage was blocked, and they could go no further.

    It turns out the passage they were in ended at the Chamber of Mazarbul - the crypt to the north of the 21st Hall. The east side of that crypt had collapsed and, accordingly, Sagla and her squad found that they could not get back using that route. So, they had to backtrack the whole way. That is what made for such a long day.

    Apparently, somehow, news did get to the orcs at the Redhorn Lodes it seems, so Bori's plan worked . . . somehow.

    Well, there's still orcs in Nud-melek what need battling - it is not as if the whole of the area has been pacified. So, we'll be making another patrol that way here shortly. It looks like we have taken an important step to reclaiming Moria.

    Unfortunately, it looks like we haven't made an important step getting to that east door. There is a chasm on the east side of Nud-melek that is too wide to cross. And the stone bridge what crossed it has been destroyed. Fresh destroyed, too, by the looks of it, but destroyed nonetheless. So, it seems, we are trapped from going in that direction, and the only way out of Moria is back the way we came - or finding whatever secret paths that the White Hand orcs have been using to get here from Isengard.

    I'll leave you with that. Stay well, and know that, for the time being at least, things seem to be turning our way here in Moria. I will write soon.

    Alphred Troute

    Saturday, August 10: Muster at the 21st Hall for a final trip to Nud-melek, where we will aim to complete he quests on and about the broken bridge.

    Monday, August 12 and Saturday, August 17

    Homework: Complete Book III - which includes a solo instance at the Chamber of Leadership to slay the white hand leader, a trip to the Chamber of the Crossroads, followed by a solo session play to learn about what happened to the previous dwarfs to enter Moria.

    We will muster at the Chamber of the Crossroads after having heard the story. We will work on Book IV, Chapter 1, consisting of three parts.
    Last edited by Tiempko; Aug 08 2019 at 09:46 AM.
    Meadowlarke Sweetweed on Landroval. Also nephews and Bounders Ayrhawk, Wrennsong, and Little Meadowlark Sweetweed
    Club Eclair roleplaying group working our way through Volume II - we will be spending 2019 working our way through the Moria Instances (Alphred Troute, Hedgerow Shrewburrow). https://www.lotro.com/forums/showthr...-II-Into-Moria

  10. #110
    I have gotten a lot of questions about long-term plans recently - including level cap increases and when we will work on various regions.

    NOTE: To see our current and immediate future status, go to the top of the very first post of this thread. What follows is longer-term plans.

    So . . . remember . . . long term plans almost always end up getting changed as I learn more information. But, it does give a general feel for what to expect.

    (1) Book IV (WaterWorks and Flaming Deeps) - we will advance Book IV of the epic quest line and, while we are at it, throw in a turtle hunt or two to see how difficult it is.

    (2) Book V (Nud-melek) - This will send us into the southern (unexplored) portion of Nud-melek, and then through three new defensive skirmishes.

    (3) Book VI: This will send us to Lothlorien. There are some camps (quest hubs) between the east door of Moria and the Lothlorien elves - we will spend some time doing those quests before meeting the elves. HOMEWORK: One of the Book VI quests will be to finish the Orc Slayer and Goblin Slayer deeds in Moria. I trust everybody had those done long ago and we can skip through to the next chapter. We will then be sent to the Elven refuge in the Foundations of Stone.

    (4) 16th Hall: On our way to the Elven refuge, we will stop and spend a few weeks battling the vermin in the 16th Hall on the southern portion of Nud-melek. This is a fellowship instance - and a long one - and one with a very difficult challenge if people are not careful (and very easy if people are careful).

    (5) At the Foundations of Stone, we will advance the landscape quests, epic book quests, and the Skumfil and Dark Delvings fellowship instances. I believe that this will be the best time to take on the Dar Narbugud raid as well - which is in this area. This will be a few months - much like the time we spent in the Flaming Deeps, but longer. We have two fellowship instances and the Dar Narbugud raid to advance while here.

    (6) Book VII: We will return to Lothlorien for a bit, then be sent back into Moria where we will help around Durin's Way for the most part. This is landscape work in a Level 53 zone, so no difficulties. [WARNING: At this point in history, Turbine decided that the epic quest should be solo, rather than fellowship. From this point on, the epic-quest line a solo quest line. So, we will have to adjust how to follow the story accordingly.]

    (7) Book VIII: We will continue with the epic story line in Moria. This will include the Lumul-nar and Nala-dum small fellowship instances. So, we will muster and then break up into groups of threes when we get to these regions. We will also likely take a detour into the Flaming Deeps to work on the Hall of Crafting fellowship instance.

    (8) Lothlorien - Return to Lothlorien to finish its quests and deeds. This includes one fellowship instance.

    (9) Raise the level cap to 58, return to Moria, and spend a couple of months on our Level 58 class quests and deeds. We will try again against the Turtle and Watcher while we are here.

    (10) Raise the level cap to 60. While we are advancing from 58 to 60, we will try to hunt Turtles and Watchers some more until we feel that we are ready to move on. Mirkwood is level-gated, so we cannot continue until we are level 60, even though we are entering a Level 60 region. Our goal here will be to finish the Moria mega-deed so that people can get their black goat.

    [11] Book IX - We will advance through Mirkwood from questhub to questhub. It actually should not take that long to reach Dol Guldur as we will be landscaping across the countryside, using landscape patrols to advance quests and deeds. Once we reach Dol Guldur, we will have a number of skirmishes and instances to advance at the end of the story, culminating in the death of the Lieutenant of Dol Guldur.

    [12] Celebrate our victory of Dol Guldur. Declare an official end to Club Éclair, Volume II. Say our tearful farewells.

    Volume III. Yes, Hedgerow and Alphred will be continuing on through Volume III. They will round up the Gray Company and accompany them through Dunland, the Gap of Rohan, and ultimately reach Isengard to confront Saruman. Company will be welcome, of course. As we get to the Gap of Rohan at Level 65, we will "hear stories" of things happening up north and digress as we go through the "In Their Absence" instance chain. Then continue on to combat Saruman.
    Last edited by Tiempko; Aug 13 2019 at 10:50 AM.
    Meadowlarke Sweetweed on Landroval. Also nephews and Bounders Ayrhawk, Wrennsong, and Little Meadowlark Sweetweed
    Club Eclair roleplaying group working our way through Volume II - we will be spending 2019 working our way through the Moria Instances (Alphred Troute, Hedgerow Shrewburrow). https://www.lotro.com/forums/showthr...-II-Into-Moria

  11. #111
    The Thors do get confuzzled. Thanks for the detailed information... now only if there was some darn farmland in that mine.

  12. #112

    ((Club Eclair II)) One Big Turtle!

    General Announcement: Anybody with a character of <=55th level with access to Moria wants to provide us with reinforcements, our roleplay will take us to the door of Filikul and the turtle Nornuan on Saturday. Through the roleplay, we will likely reach the door at about 9:45 AM on Saturday. (Roleplay starts at 9:00 AM at the Chamber of the Crossroads). We will take volunteers to fill out our ranks if you are willing. Send a note or contact Hedgerow.


    You should have seen the size of that turtle! Gad! Your smial could fit inside of its shell. Well, maybe not now that you have made those expansions - but when it was the size it was when I was living there. It would have easily fit.

    We have heard rumours of these giant turtles since first entering Moria. I was anxious to get a chance to see one. You get to them through a special locked door and through a tunnel that is far too narrow for the turtles to use, into the realm where the roam freely.

    It was a surprise that I found myself here. Hedgerow had gone to the Chamber of the Crossroads to tell Bosi of our success in slaying the White Hand leader - well - Thorcundo and Bori's success, actually. Only, Bosi was not pleased. He figured that all we had done was to get the orcs mad and that now, with all of their great numbers, they will do to us what the did to Balin's expedition. He is expecting a massive Orc assault on the dwarfs, now seen as a threat. And so he started worrying about how best to set up the defenses.

    One of the things he was worried about was orcs and goblins coming up the well, so he asked us to find the bottom and to see iffen orcs could attack from there. I figured that this was nonsense - for what if the orcs had a tunnel into the well half-way down? Finding the bottom would never tell us this. Besides, there is only one way to find the bottom of a well. We did try throwing a torch down it, naturally, but quite some ways down the well turned slightly to the side so we had no straight line of sight.

    Well, we mustered up as much rope as we could find and down we went. I went first. I did not find any orc tunnels as I went and, lo and behold, I ended up suspended high above an underground lake. And it was a lake I recognized. It was the Water Works - where we had done some work clearing off the water wheels and such so as the dwarfs could get water and air to the various parts of Moria. It was safe enough.

    Once I got to the bottom - which was a very long trip - others came down after me. Thorfanial, Amio, Bohunc, and Thalachon - who seems to be doing better now after his illness. Thorfaniel got stuck part way down and we had to shake her loose. There weren't no orcs down here. There was some toads and lizards and spiders and such what had been growing down here and still do, but naught but an infrequent Goblin messenger running through.

    But it was near to the gateway to the great turtles.

    When news got out that we were going to go look for a turtle, others started showing up. Wandrin and Roy found their way to is - as well as a couple of battlers we had not seen in quite some time - Kaehlee and Carnndan. Gad, I think we might have seen them once since they helped us against that beast in the belly of The Rift. But here they were, when we needed them most.

    But, can you imagine how difficult it is to battle a creature of this size? We can scarce get through its shell. I recall when we battled the fierce turtle in the tombs of Evendim - we were able to crack its shell with a particularly powerful maneuver, but we couldn't even get into positions for a maneuver against this creature. It was just a matter of trying to wear it down and wear it out before we got worn down and worn out ourselfs.

    We almost did it! It was quite close. Close enough that I know that we can complete the task iffen we only had a couple of reinforcements. I could tell that it was getting tired. But, in the end, it had a bit more stamina than we did. We're letting folks know that we will be trying another hunt in a couple of weeks, iffen we get a chance. Gad, if we hunt one of these turtles, it will keep the dwarfs of Moria in turtle soup for a month!

    We are going to try again, if we get a chance, amidst our other concerns. Bosi is quite concerned that the orcs are organizing themselves and planning a serious attack against the dwarfs. Of course, that is most important. Mayhaps you can tell that I do not think that the orcs are as much a threat as Bosi does. There are great gobs of them - to be certain. We took out only a very small fraction of the Orc camps in the Fil Gashan region, and they never have seemed all that well organized. But Bosi seems to think that this leader of theirs - Mazog - would be able to make a real army out of them.

    We shall see.

    Anyways, to prepare for their assault, Bosi has asked that we bring in some supplies to help them withstand a siege. After I finish this letter and get it in the post, I will try to get some sleep and head out to the gateway myself to help bring in some more supplies to add to their stockpile. Though the stockpile is well stocked, I assure you. It is my hope I will get there in daylight - and get to see the sun again. Hedgerow just got back from a trip - but he said it was night time when he got there and so he saw naught but stars. But he was happy to see the stars.

    I will let you know how we do.

    Mayhaps I can get Erikin to draw a sketch of us battling this giant turtle so you can see what we are up against! Iffen he is willing, I will send it to you.


    Alphred Troute

    Look at the first post for an idea of where we are at.

    Look two posts up for an outline of the grand scheme of things.

    We did fight the giant turtle. We lost the battle, but everything suggests that we can defeat the turtle with a full raid of 12 folks. If we had Jaytull and Medloth and one other Eclairian in our group to fill up the group to 12, we would have likely defeated the turtle.

    Some folks left the battle thinking of things that they could do to make themselves a bit better next time. Wandrin' reduced his rally cooldown.

    Amio made a discovery I did not know about. When you change your stance (e.g., from red to blue), your virtues change as well to the corresponding stance. When he switched to blue for minstrelling, he unknowingly switched to a virtue slot that had no virtues in it. This is something to look for. So, Amio will be better set up at the next battle as well.

    I'll be seeking some company for siege trainings as I have some jewelries that could us an upgrade.

    The Saturday group will take a crack at the turtle as they work on Chapter 1 and go down the well.
    Last edited by Tiempko; Aug 13 2019 at 11:02 AM.
    Meadowlarke Sweetweed on Landroval. Also nephews and Bounders Ayrhawk, Wrennsong, and Little Meadowlark Sweetweed
    Club Eclair roleplaying group working our way through Volume II - we will be spending 2019 working our way through the Moria Instances (Alphred Troute, Hedgerow Shrewburrow). https://www.lotro.com/forums/showthr...-II-Into-Moria

  13. #113

    ((Club Eclair)) Turtle Soup for a Month

    To: Daffodilia Wildfeet
    Chief, Bounders of the Shire – Addernotch Station


    We did it! We hunted down one of them giant turtles!

    We sent a patrol of five Eclairians down the well in the Chamber of the Crossroads to make sure that orcs could not sneak up the well. Indeed, they found that there were no ways to break through, and the buttom is so far down inside the massive Water Works that there’s no way for the orcs to build a scaffolding and climb up without being noticed. Then, they went off to look for the region where the giant turtles grew. When they returned, they reported that they had found it. And though they were met down there by others what helped them in the hunt, they could not bring a turtle down.

    Well, so, some of us decided we wanted to give it a try. Roy , Wandrin, and Thalachon decided that they wanted a rematch against one of the great beasts. Me, Erikin, Thirdal, and Sagla, all volunteered to go along. We actually went down the well, as that was the quickest way to the Water Works. None of the reinforcements that Alphred had found down there remained, so it was just the seven of us. And it was considered foolish for us to even try. But Sagla said we should at least give it a try so as we can test it for weaknesses and learn how to have a better hunt next time.

    It turns out that we discovered a weakness. We had been fighting for a good, long while when we figured it out. Roy, Erikin, and Thirdal had all been badly mauled and were out of the fighting. Thalachon was laying, battered and near to giving up hope. But Wandrin and I were keeping Sagla in the battle in such a way that we felt we could wear it down eventually. Sagla would battle the turtle until she was fully spent . . . she would collapse . . . but either Wandrin or I would get her back into the battle refreshed and ready for another few minutes, before she would collapse again. We could not tell which of us would be worn out first, but it was a test of endurance.

    When I saw we were holding our own, I took a risk. I rished to Thalachon and assured him that we had a chance iffen he would only return to the battle. I got him to his feet. He shook off the earlier defeat and rushed at the turtle, and while Sagla kept its attention, Thalachon hacked and hewed at its shell and any soft parts he could reach – it truly was a horrendous monster.

    Then Sagla’s weapon shattered. Her armour was rent and torn and was appearing more of a hinderance than a protection. But we could see signs of the turtle wearing down as well. Sagla would rush up, shout and scream and it and draw its attention, do the best she could to evade its snapping jaws, while, all the while, Thalachon delivered a series of small cuts and scrapes. Then, it stumbled. It fell to its knees and Talachon aimed a fatal blow. And we had slayed a giant turtle.

    There was cheering and celebrations, to be certain. The room was packed full of the treasures of countless hunters who had met an untimely end. We lifted up all we could take with us, then informed the dwarfs of the Water Works that there was turtle soups waiting – enough for a month. They immediately organized work crews to carve up the meats and see to its preservation.

    Bosi was sending us to the front gate of Moria to hasten the deliver of supplies so that the dwarfs could withstand a siege of orcs. Now, with our hunt being successful, they were smoking and salting enough turtle meat to last through a month of siege.

    Bosi is now content that the Chamber of the Ccrossroads is able to withstand an attack from the orcs. He’s still fearful that when Thorcundo and Bori slayed the white hand leader, that they filled the orcs with a resolve to rid themselves of the dwarven menace. That while, before, we were a bother not worth much time and attention, by Bosi’s account they will now see us as a threat to be eliminated. We’ve not seen any real sign of it yet. But Bosi is assured, they are in their dark corners and camps, organizing, planning, and making themselves ready to drive the dwarves out of Moria so as they can have the city to themselves once again.

    One of the places Bosi wants to make sure to hold is the Hall of Fire. These newly discovered forges are being used to melt down the metals that are taken from the orcs in battle – a great many broken swords and pieces of armor that we have collected in our battles – and turn them into gears useful in the defense and reconquest of Moria. So, Bosi is sending us down south to help in its defenses.

    I have marked on my maps a campsite outside of the door to the Forgotten Treasury – an array of about 20 vaults that we had cleared out long ago. These areas are regions where we have already patrolled, so there is no serious threat to travelers any more along these hallways. So, I told the fellow Eclairians that I will head south to that campsite and wait for them there. I will be leaving in the morning after a good night’s sleep. We’re not doing anything dangerous – except hunting the turtles. We are just preparing for an orcan attack that may never come.

    I will keep you informed.

    Bounder Hedgerow Shrewburrow

    See the start of the first post for an account of where we are at.

    For those who experienced the box bug with the troll at the start of Nud-Melek (you could only pick up the first quest), Sagla has reported that, once the torch quest is done, you can return to the troll and get the second quest if it is your pleasure to do so.

    Also . . . I did not know this at the time . . . but, if you were not among a group that went to the far back of the dead-end hallway with the riddle quest . . . this is a part of a much larger riddle quest chain. All of these riddle quests we have been doing fit together. So, you might want to get to the end of the hallway to do that riddle quest if you care about such things. We did make that walk three times (much to my surprise), so most of us have gotten the riddle quest done.
    Meadowlarke Sweetweed on Landroval. Also nephews and Bounders Ayrhawk, Wrennsong, and Little Meadowlark Sweetweed
    Club Eclair roleplaying group working our way through Volume II - we will be spending 2019 working our way through the Moria Instances (Alphred Troute, Hedgerow Shrewburrow). https://www.lotro.com/forums/showthr...-II-Into-Moria

  14. #114

    ((Club Eclair)) Interceptions


    I am exhausted, but I cannot sleep.

    We hunted down one of them big turtles that I wrote to you about. There were 11 of us in the hunting party - including a couple of new folks who came along to fill on our troop. Among us Eclairians, there was me and Thalachon, Roy, Fraori, Amio, Jaytull, Thorfaniel, Thirdal, and Medloth - plus the two helpers. I regret I do not remember their names. Its hard to remember names of folks one just met.

    After the last hunt, as I hear it, Sagla and Thalachon had a discussion and worked out some improved tactics. Thalachon told me about it and we decided to give it a try. Our usual tactics involve sending in some particularly good battlers to get the attention of the villains while the others engage in battle to defeat them. But the turtle will wear down our chief battler until she simply cannot withstand the attacks and has to withdraw from the fight for a bit of rest. Then it will destroy the rest of us. That is what happened to Sagla. Though Hedgerow and Wandrin could keep her in the fight, she was in tatters by the end of the hunt.

    The tactics that Sagla and Thalachon worked out was a way for one of them to battle the Turtle until too tired to do so, then the other will take over the fight while the first rests, and they go back and forth, each resting while the other fights, slowly wearing down the turtle.

    Thalachon told me the tactics and, though we never practiced them, we decided to give it a try. There was a bit of fumbling at the beginning while we worked out the way of it. I would draw the turtle against me. I would keep its attention until it had worn me down until it was getting near too much to continue, then Thalachon would step up to the turtle, shout and make noises to get its attention. I would rest in a bit - still in the fight, but not in such a way that I need worry about having the turtle's attention. Then, as Thalachon got weary, I would bang my shield, shout, and draw the turtle after me, giving Thalachon time to rest.

    Meanwhile, the others were busy wearing the creature down.

    Still, it was a deadly creature and it would sometimes turn on the others and knock them from the fight. The first turtle had so weakened us in this way we had to give up the fight and retreat and let it go.

    Well, we gathered together and discussed what happened and how to keep others in the fight. We put the rock wizards to keeping Thalachon and me on our feet while the minstrels and Medloth the bear lady kept everybody else in the fight. The creature would still sometimes go on a rampage, trampling and tossing us so as to knock two or three of us out of the fight. But, Amio and Jaytull and Medloth would get them on their feet.

    We had almost won when, for some reason, as Thalachon was getting tired, I could not get the turtle's attention off of him. The turtle was bound and determined to drive Thalachon into the ground. And did so. Without rescue, Thalachon could not stay in the fight. Only then did the turtle turn to me determined to do the same and turn the fight in its favor. I could stand against the creature for only a couple minutes before I was worn down as well. But, because of Fraori's rock wizardry, Thalachon was on his feet again within a moment. He rested and recovered and got himself back on his feet, and was ready to take the turtle's attention as I became too weary to continue.

    The turtle never had another chance to turn the tables on us and, eventually, could fight no more. It fell, and we quickly finished it off.

    The Dwarfs have yet another large supply of meats to prepare and store so as to better last a long siege.

    The reason we were in the area to hunt turtles is that Bosi is still concerned that Thorcundo and Bori have riled the orcs into launching a serious attack against us, and he is trying to disrupt the attack as much as possible. There are goblin messengers what travel the Water Works delivering messages among the various tribes, coordinating their activities. It was hoped that, by slaying the messengers, we could disrupt communications and discoordinate their assaults. We must have slayed near to two dozen messengers about the Water Works on the patrol.

    I will head back to the Hall of Fire after some rest and let the dwarfs know that we did as asked and see what else we can do to help them prepare for this attack. So far as I know, we are preparing for an attack that will never come. But, it is better to be prepared for what never comes than to fail to be prepared for what comes.

    But, things are actually a bit restful, when we want them to be. Preparing for an attack what might never come is a bit of hard work, but not dangerous work. And it will make the attack to come - if it comes - less dangerous as well.

    Be well. I am sure Bosi's concerns are for naught.

    Alphred Troute

    To try to minimize IC boredom, I would like to cut the IC travelling back a bit.

    August 24 (Saturday group): Vol. II, Book IV, Chapter 2: Muster at the campsite outside of the Forgotten Treasury. We will walk into the Heart of Fire, talk to Stothkell, then walk down into the Water Works to disrupt messengers. While there, we can try another turtle hunt. We have a strategy now. It still takes work, and skill, and a bit of luck, but we can do it.

    Homework (between sessions): Turn in Chapter 3, "send a messenger" to the 21st hall to report to Brogur and get his instructions (Chapter 4) and then pick up Chapter 5, then return to the Heart of Fire.

    August 26 (Monday group) and August 31 (Saturday group): Vol. II, Book IV, Chapter 5: Muster at the Heart of Fire where we will receive Brogur's instructions via messenger. We will walk to the Flaming Deeps to complete the quest and end at the Rotting Cellar, where we will "ship" what we gather back to Brogur in the 21st Hall and await further instructions.

    Homework (between sessions): Return to the 21st hall to finish the quest and pick up instructions for Chapter 6, return to the Rotting Cellar.

    September 2 (Monday) and September 7 (Saturday): Vol. II, Book IV, Chapter 6: This involves a long patrol around the Water Works.

    Homework: Return to the 21st Hall. Turn in Chapter 6 and be ready to start Chapter 7 - the fellowship instance.

    September 9 (Monday) and September 14 (Saturday): Fellowship instance: The Drowned Treasury. We will probably try to fit in other trips during the week - Saturday at 10:00 and Wednesday at 8:00 PM - to get everybody through this. It has that "inspired greatness" which I seek to avoid by having at least 5 people in a mission.

    Then we will start Book V. We will spend some time in the southern part of Nud-melek, finishing up unfinished business there, before returning to the 21st Hall. We will probably spend a couple of weeks here, taking us to the end of September. This time, we may use the mustering horn at the 16th Hall.

    Once at the 21st Hall, the massive orcan assault will begin, forcing us into serious defensive battles at the Deep Way, the Way of the Smiths, and the 21st Hall itself. I am thinking that we will spend 1 week involved in each skirmish.

    Last week of October, we will leave the 21st Hall to go to Lothlorien - start of Book VI of the epic quests. Where we will see sunshine again.
    Meadowlarke Sweetweed on Landroval. Also nephews and Bounders Ayrhawk, Wrennsong, and Little Meadowlark Sweetweed
    Club Eclair roleplaying group working our way through Volume II - we will be spending 2019 working our way through the Moria Instances (Alphred Troute, Hedgerow Shrewburrow). https://www.lotro.com/forums/showthr...-II-Into-Moria


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