Duty Session 29: Goblin Scouts in the Field
A porcelain quest has been offered to the Hunters Guild. There's reports of Goblin Scouts in the Eastal Free League region, close to the ruins of a place called 'Shibuya'. The region is largely open fields, with a lot of tall weeds. But there's old roads in the region that still carry some people who go to that region to gather some special herbs that can't be found anywhere else. The request requires the disposal of these goblins.
Misa has decided to take a break from organizing alliance matters and go kill some mobs. Which is why she has organized a party and dragged them out to this field, where a quest for killing Goblins has sent them. Misa walks along with the others, though her thoughts still look a little distant as she softly taps the shaft of her scythe against her shoulder.
Misa is still a little distracted as the group makes its way through some tall grass. But she's quickly finds herself snapping out of her own thoughts by a very light clicking sound. Misa instinctively acts, barely a blur as she suddenly moves at high speed. Just in time too, as the trap shuts closed with a loud SNAP.
They've stumbled into trap territory. Misa warns the other two, "Careful."
His shield was already on his arm and magic scepter in hand. Zorin was scanning the horizon, looking for signs of the goblins, when Misa called out to be careful. Looking around quickly he didn't see anything, and then he heard a snap as his heavy armoured boot landed on something.
Oh no, that wasn't good.
Traps. The bane of many a careless adventurer and the occasional bear...
Of the impromptu group, Amalthea might be a little out of place; but the aged Odysseia Knight keeps up well enough her her younger counterparts through the tall grass.
It's the 'click' that gives the old woman a beat's pause.
Where Misa turns to a blur of motion, Amalthea purses her lips, clear blue eyes trailing down slowly as she holds her position for a moment, doing her level best to discern where other such traps could be among the reeds, slowing her pace considerably.
A few paces forward. A step to the left. Another step forward. One right...
To her credit she stifles the sound of pain as a trap clamps down on her boot, kneeling to extricate herself from it before continuing on, minus some HP.
"Ah, damn. I already don't like goblins."
Misa triggers a couple of more traps along the way, but manages to avoid harm with additional bursts of speed to escape. Though judging by the sounds she heard along the way, her counterparts were not so fortunate. As Amalthea laments the goblins' existence, Misa mmms in some agreement, "Despite their appearance, they can be rather smart. As displayed by placing the traps in the long grass."
Just as they've made it out of the long grass and into a clearing, the group find themselves facing off against a number of goblins. The small creatures call out to each other and the party with various grunts and cries, before charging forward with objects barely worthy of being called weapons raised.
Misa steps back. She's heard Amalthea to be a strong fighter, so leaves the front line to her. The Bladesinger raises her scythe into the air, chanting, "O gods above, let the chorus of your guardians sing." Musical notes of light appear around Misa. They quickly spread, forming around Amalthea and Zorin both, reducing any damage received from the goblins.
Misa quickly maneuvers through the traps. They trigger, but don't even seem to come close to her. Zorin on the other hand, already slowed seems to cause a cascade of clanging metal and nearly every step seems to add another trap to his burden.
SNAP! SNAP! SNAP!
"Of for the love of the Burning One!" he exclaims while running through the field as the traps clinging onto him trigger other traps. Fortunately, not all of these actually dig into his leg anymore, rather they snap shut on the rim of other traps.
Looking over at Amalthea with a grunt Zorin adds, "Oh, I'm with you on that one!"
Finally seeing the goblins Misa casts a buff, musical notes of light flowing through the air and causing his armour to glow faintly. With a savage grin at the goblins he charges forward, "Oh, finally! I'm going to pound these little buggers!"
What was supposed to be a headlong change into their lines with his shield turned into a hobbled shuffle with the traps still clinging to his legs. The little goblins cackling jump and slash at him with rusty and dull weapons.
And there they are.
It's a small group of them, but those are undeniably goblins. "Clever little bastards, sure, but how do they do in a fair fight?" She asides back to Misa as she intones her spell and the Paladin can already feel its beneficial effects, "Thanks."
Amalthea wastes no time taking to the front row, shield raised and sword resting on its upper lip in a defensive position as she makes her approach; cautious and measured, until she's nearly on top of the goblins.
And then she unleashes her fury.
The old woman's swordsmanship is as wild and unpredictable as it is vicious and punishing, giving the goblins a real bang up and fright. Even though she's internally wincing at Zorin's plight. Once the goblin squad is chased off, she sheathes her blade.
"Need help with those?" She asks, motioning for the traps clinging to him.
Misa watches from her position at the rear as Zorin hobbles in, only to be dogpiled by a bunch of goblins, his health beginning to fall. Eventually he manages to fight them off, the little mongrels shattering into motes of light as they hit the ground. But it's a good thing Misa cast that defense buff. Poor Zorin. He must be having a bad day.
On the other hand, Amalthea manages to just tear through the goblins on her sword with barely a scratch to her HP bar. Misa nods her head a little in acknowledgement of the skill.
The group continue forward, before they stumble into another goblin. This one is alone, but it's also of a type somewhat larger than the previous ones. Misa narrows her eyes, "Is this the boss?" It seems a bit early. Maybe it's just a lieutenant. Though she might have overestimated the level of this quest.
Either way though, it clearly needs to be defeated. Misa spins her scythe over her head, the weapon beginning to glow. She then slams the bottom into the ground in front of her. The earth ripples outwards, rushing forward beneath the Armored Goblin. This throws the goblin off balance, giving the other two a chance to strike at it.
Grinning a bit sheepishly Zorin replies, "If you'd be so kind. I really need to get these off." And with that the older woman helps remove the last of the traps. After they finish removing the last of the traps he thanks her again, "I'm not the most mobile in this armour, those traps really hurt. Thanks for helping with that."
Much more mobile now he was a bit grim, "(This just really isn't my day. I need to step up my game here.)" he thought as they progressed. And then there was a lone armoured goblin, Misa questioned if it was a boss and Zorin hummed in thought. "Either way, it's there. Let me take point on this."
Zorin quickly advanced, the goblin warrior taking note of them and issuing a sharp keening scream as it raised it's blade and charged. Setting his stance firmly he waited as the goblin charged in, it tried to zig zag around the shield to strike from the side, but Zorin was waiting for it and issued a strong shield bash right to its face.
"Any time, any time." Amalthea comments to Zorin amid disposing of the traps still clinging to him and tossing them aside for disposal, before moving on. And encountering the armored gob.
"... He's a big one, isn't he." The old Paladin muses, shield at the ready again. "It's a little too early for the boss though, isn't it? Call me old fashioned, but I think there's plenty more where he came from."
She cuts the chatter though and readies for battle, edging in from the beast's side. Because when Misa's spell throws it off balance, Amalthea moves in, following up Zorin's brutal shield bash with a thrust of her blade into a chink in that armor.
The two front-liners are quick to make work of the Armored Goblin, beating it into submission and preventing it from getting more than a few blows of its own out. Finally it vanishes into the data stream.
With the Armored Goblin defeated, Misa glances around, "The goblins must be coming from somewhere... Split up. Let's search the area and see if we can find the source." Misa begins to walk around. She's not much of a tracker. Nor does she have any spells to assist in the search. So all she can do is use good ol' fashioned grid searching. Unfortunately it's slow going. Hopefully the other two have better luck.
As they start to look around he nears the area that Amalthea is searching, "Thanks for coming with us on this quest. Things could have gone a lot worse had you not been there." He scratched the back of his neck unsure how to ask his next question. "Umm, I hope you don't mind, but can I ask why you chose the avatar you did? Is it perhaps a straight body scan?"
With the big goblin issue soundly handled, this time Amalthea doesn't sheathe her blade; keeping it at the ready in the event anything else pops up while they search. "Right."
It IS a slow going search as blue eyes try to pick out anything out of the ordinary.
"Hm? Oh, yeah, it's not a problem. We can't solve everything on our own now can we?" She says, briefly pulled from her search by Zorin's approach, an easy smile forming on her lips.
"It's a body scan." She answers honestly to the next question. "I think it would've been weird if my granddaughter got used to seeing me as some spritely little thing, so here I am."
As they talk Zorin finds an area where the grasses have been bent much more so then the rest of the area, and it seemed to head further to the east.
"Hey, I think I found something." He calls out to the others, "See how this grass has been bent and damaged? It looks like it continues in a line to the east from here." He points in the direction.
Misa remains quiet as the other two talk. She's not too surprised by the revelation of Amalthea's avatar being a body scan. No doubt people of many ages were playing.
Misa has found something! It's... A stick. Yes. Very important. It was probably left behind... By a goblin who... 'Hey, I think I found something.' Oh thank god.
Zorin finds some flattened grass. The group follows. The terrain soon becomes more earthy. At which point Amalthea's searching reveals a faint set of tracks. The group continues deeper into the field. Misa follows behind, grateful that the others proved to be more experienced in field activities than her.
"Hold up." Just ahead, the group can see another gathering of goblins. And one of them looks particularly tough. Misa prepares another support spell, "Heroes of legend, bless-" Misa suddenly stops as she is forced to dart to the side. An arrow pierces through the spot she was just in.
Misa narrows her eyes at that Goblin Archer... That was a well aimed shot. Right at her. Misa says quietly, "I'll handle the archer... You two go for the rest."
Misa starts running off to the side. She starts calling out again, "Heroes of legend-" The archer unleashes another arrow. With a quick step, Misa changes course, letting the projectile sweep past her head. She zigs in further towards the archer, "Heroes-" Fwip. Misa dives, going into a roll as the arrow soars overhead.
"I see it." The old Paladin replies to Zorin as the bent grass is pointed out, but then she purses her lips before dipping her head in a nod. "Yeah. I moved to Japan to be closer to my daughter and her family, but there was still a bit of a commute to see them. This was, ultimately, easier." But she pauses, lips pursing. "I hope they're not stuck in here with me." Admitted before she spies the tracks and cuts her chatter again.
Too little, too late, though as arrows come sailing and Misa is forced to start dodging like a Dark Souls protagonist.
She exchanges a look with Zorin.
"I'll go right, you go left."
Already she's moving in a hustle, to clear out the right flank of supporting goblins with that wild and deadly swordplay once again.
Zorin gives a curt nod to Amalthea before breaking into a run to the left of the group of goblins, shield raised in front. The other goblins with the ranger take notice and suddenly swarm forward as well. Guttural calls and seeming gibberish words uttered as they rush towards him. "(Do they have their own language or is that some kind of a battle cry?)" he wondered in the back of his mind.
But then they were upon him. He slammed his shield forward, knocking the first few back, and then swung his scepter into the face of another which was trying to flank him from the side. More still came, and his shield started to blur as he maneuvered it to intercept their attacks. Occasionally smashing one with his scepter.
He could see Amalthea making short work of those that had gone after her, they were clearing up this group quickly. These unarmoured goblins were nothing compared the one earlier. Still, Zorin glances in concern at the ranger as he continued his battle with the goblin minions.
Without the support of their expert archer, the support goblins find themselves overwhelmed by the two frontliners. Amalthea's sword dances through their small bodies, shattering them. Zorin charges in from the other side, tanking the goblin makeshift weapons on his shield before unleashing blows from his mace, the goblins providing a somewhat disturbing and yet satisfying wet crunching sound as they are struck before vanishing.
Misa herself comes out of her roll to a stop on one knee, directly in front of the Goblin Archer. She brings her scythe around and up in a diagonal cut, slicing through the mob. But it doesn't end there as Misa deftly reverses her grip on the scythe, bringing it down before unleashing another diagonal blow from the opposite direction. The red X of the damage lines glows, before the archer shatters into light.
Misa rises, taking in a few breaths as she looks around. They seem to have dealt with the immediate threat of the goblins in this area. The source still needs to be located, but they can move onto that later. For now, Misa says, "Let's take a break here. Down some health potions, you two. I expect we'll see more goblins soon enough." Misa moves over to a large rock, placing her scythe down against it and taking a seat.
Misa had been a little concerned about Amalthea's family being here too. But, "Did you get a chance to put them on your friends list?" Hopefully that's a yes, which means if Amalthea hasn't heard from them yet, it's unlikely that they're here in the game with them.
With the goblins felled handily, this time, once the battle is over, Amalthea does sheathe her blade. Casually adjusting the straps on her shield, the older adventurer heaves a slow sigh that filters through her teeth.
Right about now sounds like a good time to down a health potion and taks a breather, so she does that in preparation for anything else that might come their way.
"Ah..." But then she shakes her head. "I didn't figure out the friend list thing until after we all got stuck in here." She admits, rubbing at the back of her neck.
He looks over in the direction of the Aincrad tower. "One day we will get out, but I fear that every day that passes the world out there continues on. What am I missing? What is happening to my family?" He looks back at the other two. "Still, we can only deal with the next step, the problem in front of us now."
And there is a brief glimmer in his eye, "I'm glad to have people like the both of you on my side. Thanks again for today!" and he smiles warmly.