Letting Them Get Away

We're fighting some bandits: tieflings and an ogre. There is one more tiefling than I saw when I scouted, this fifth one looking to be the leader, as he is rather more aggressive and the only one to be using natural claws as a weapon against us. Well, against me, mostly. And despite the paladin's constant checking the bandit leader doesn't drop his natural claws in favour of a more conventional weapon. It all sounds rather familiar, but at least we aren't facing gelatinous cube bandits. Or, for that matter, fire giants.

The ogre is causing enough problems on his own. Even with the four other tieflings removed from combat, thanks to an effective web spell flung at them by our wizard (and thankfully not followed-up with a swarm of bats), the ogre's tree-trunk of a club has put some dents in the paladin's armour.

I'm tickled to see that trying to disarm a club bigger than myself is not that much more difficult than a normal-sized club, but I still manage to fail. Maybe the ogre's orge strength helps him cling on to his weapon when it's struck by a puny human monk. Not even Brennan's attempts to trip the ogre are much help. A voice rumbles from above that maybe the encounter is tweaked a little too much against us.

But Ganelon comes to the rescue! After failing to realise in our previous fight that his smite ability ignores all damage reduction—which would have helped nicely against the were-rat not-a-goblin leader, had he remembered—the paladin redeems himself with a mighty blow on the ogre, a critical hit slicing through the large creature's neck. It's not quite enough to drop him to the forest floor but one more strenuous swing of the huge club is enough to cause the orge to collapse. It's a neat trick, but you need to be a professional to pull off the sacrificing strike.

The tide is turned. The felled ogre leaves us only the leader tiefling to fight, who we drop unconscious just in time for the other bandits to free themselves from the web and face us. Two are put to magical sleep and manacled by our bard, so they can be taken back to town to face justice, and the other two flee. The fight started to look bad but a heroic strike made us victorious! So of course I have to ruin it.

Some strange sense of justice fills my mind such that I cannot let the other bandits escape unpunished. My new-found fast movement lets me close the ground on the fleeing tieflings, to the point where they turn to engage me. Right, I remember now why this is a bad idea, as they probably won't surrender if I declare that I'm putting them under citizen's arrest.

The two tieflings naturally gang up on me, as we are now safely a couple of hundred feet from their camp and my fellows. Well, they are safely a couple of hundred feet from my fellows, I'm rather at risk. I take a few blows before deciding that maybe justice has been served, at which point a couple of the party have thankfully decided not to let me learn from my mistakes the hard way, and have line-of-sight to let them shoot arrows at the tieflings.

The tieflings go one way, I go the other. Our mission is a success, even if I consume a potion or two of cure light wounds more than was necessary. We take back to town three bandits to be locked away for their crimes, return trade goods to robbed merchants, and present the head of the ogre as a show that it will not threaten any citizens again. Our good deeds are getting recognition.

Comments are closed.