Having overheard Binwin and Omin’s conversation, the group understood that this was their chance to earn some well needed money. Protect the horses (most importantly, Binwin’s prize war pony Brandymane) from goblin raiders hungry for horse meat while Acquisitions Inc emptied the Greenlode Mine north of Harken.
Aylwyn was the first to approach the dwarf and inquire about the job. Successfully rolling a bluff skill check, he convinced Binwin that he was an expert on horses and perfect for the job despite his lack of build. Threefeet was a bonus since he looked like he could do well in a fight.
Auroara was refused work for fear her catlike form would spook the horses, but Magnus was so imposing that Binwin hired him on the spot.
Baharel rolled a successful diplomacy check and convinced Omin that he possessed the leadership abilities to reign in this rag-tag group of new hires into a cohesive team, despite Binwin’s fear that the Dragonborn would spook his pony.
The group was instructed to go to sleep, and be out front at noon sharp.
Threefeet immediately challenged Baharel to a drinking game and a series of endurance checks between the two were rolled to determine who could out drink the other. Threefeet was on his back shortly after and a final failed endurance check indicated he was indeed late showing up for work the next day. He was docked 5gp pay for his tardiness.
Upon reaching the campsite and watching Binwin and Co. disappear into the mine, the group started walking the perimeter of the small clearing and performing perception checks. Signs of previous struggles and some old goblin tracks were all that were found.
Calling out from the treeline to the northeast, a goblin heckler initiated the first encounter by using his heckle power to pull Mangus three squares away from the horses. Two hidden goblin archers struck the party from the trees.
During the beginning of the encounter all of the party save Aylwyn engaged the goblins, using in combat skill checks to locate the archers. Auroara rushed the heckler falling into a hidden pit where she became a sitting duck. Goblin Blackblades popped out from the treeline in an attempt to flank the party.
Two rounds later a 2nd group of Goblin cutters appeared opposite the stream to the south of the campsite. They rushed the ponies and Aylwyn. While a couple cutters engaged Aylwyn, the others threw a bag over Brandymane’s head and started leading him south into the forest.
The party spread out and turned the tide of battle against the goblins. Magnus double-moved to block the escaping horse thieves, took an action point and thunder-clapped them to a fine red mist with a nice AOE. But the sound spooked a now drugged Brandymane and sent him running wildly blind into the woods.
The party killed all but one goblin cutter, whom Baharel intimidated into surrendering. Aylwyn successfully bluffed the goblin into believing that he himself was also a goblin and pumped him for information. Upon revealing that he was lying and NOT a goblin the cutter failed an endurance check and died from shock.
Auroara performed successful nature checks to track the pony into the treeline where she discovered it had been picked up by more goblins and lead into a charred vale. Krayt performed a stealth skill challenge to give the party a chance to sneak to the treeline, see what was going on and get a surprise round.
The goblins had the pony in a circle. A goblin hexxer was performing some horrible ritual on the possibly now dead pony, whipping it with abandon and causing glowing green wounds. Aylwyn’s arcana check revealed the charred vale was once a sight of some horrible magical incident and the hexer was drawing on that power to perform a poly-morph spell on Binwin’s pony.
With the element of surprise and blowing pretty much everyone’s daily power the group went through the 2nd group like water. Some trouble from the hexxer and his toxic cloud slowed them a bit, but they quickly circumvented the obstacle and struck him down.
Baharel performed a few heals on Brandymane and he seemed fine and restored to health until they reached the dark cover of the forest. In the dark Brandywine’s eyes were glowing a deep red and he was belching green sulfur.
Binwin was not pleased to find his pony half poly-morphed into who knows what. He insists that he now owns the party’s life until they can pay him for another war pony as great as Brandywine.