Adventures and Adversaries Chapter 3
Xander's nose wrinkled at the rancid stench that always characterized goblin territory, it was like the nasal equivalent of hatred and decay; the goblins destroyed any area they laired in, because they hated everything including each other.
The three crept forward once Buffy had signaled that her eyes had adjusted to the darkness, Willow stepped in front of Xander and carefully lead the way.
Twenty feet in Willow uncovered a hidden pit trap, the top covered in canvas with a thin layer of dirt to disguise it. The smell of rotting flesh emitting from the pit made her decide not to search it until they'd had a chance to clean it … with fire.
Xander and Buffy followed Willow, amazed at the way she spotted traps in the near total darkness they were walking in.
Trap after trap, pitfalls, snares and tripwires were all found and disabled by Willow, but as the old saying goes the goblins only had to get lucky once and indeed they did, as while Willow was disabling a tripwire, the leather cord the goblins had used was so old and worn that it snapped! Slamming a bunch of armor pieces into the wall and raising such a clamor that it woke all the goblins, including the two that were supposed to be on watch.
Realizing the element of surprise was gone the three rushed into the main cavern with Willow ducking behind Xander's massive frame as he met the goblin's charge.
Half awake and barely dressed or armed; standard for goblins really, half a dozen goblins rushed Xander screaming loudly.
Xander's first blow hit one of the lead goblins so hard it bowled over several of the other goblins behind him, but that didn't stop one of the quicker goblins from slashing his side with a rusty dagger.
The goblins swarmed over Xander like ants on a grasshopper.
Jonathan, Warren, and Andrew entered the Sunnydale high school library and looked around.
"I think they ditched you," Warren noted.
"They probably just went to get refreshments," Andrew said hopefully.
"Or the bathroom," Jonathan said as he saw the board had already been setup.
"Adventures and Adversaries," Warren read off the box. "Looks like classic D&D," he said with approval.
Jonathan picked up the DM's manual and began to read through it, quickly becoming engrossed.
"Ummm... Guys," Andrew said as he watched the three silver figures on the board.
"Yeah?" Warren asked, glancing up from the player's handbook.
"The pieces are moving by themselves!" Andrew said in awe.
Warren looked over and saw the minotaur figure roar and swing an arm like it was hitting something. "Animatronics?"
"Not quite," Jonathan said his voice seeming to come from all four corners of the room.
Warren and Andrew's heads snapped up and stared at Jonathan; his eyes looked like portals into the night sky with stars scattered about in them.
"Reveal," Jonathan ordered and the air above the board rippled and tore, showing the Scoobs battling a goblin horde.
Xander had a goblin by the leg and was using him as a club, as he fought his way forward with Buffy and Willow following behind and finishing off the stunned goblins.
"Holy shit!" Warren exclaimed.
"They're in the game!" Andrew squealed, snatching the Player's Guide from Warren.
"What are you doing?" Warren demanded.
"Making a character!" Andrew replied.
"And you're not freaked out by this?"
"By a chance to actually be in the game?" Andrew looked at him like he was nuts.
"How about Jonathan's eyes?"
"The DM is god in these games; he's just getting in character," Andrew replied firmly. "Look this is probably the only chance we'll ever have to do this, no player worth his dice would pass this up!"
Warren looked stunned for a moment at having his alpha geek status being challenged by Andrew of all people, before he rose to the occasion, "Pass me the handbook when you're done."
"Hostages?" Buffy asked as they searched the cavern.
"Looks like they ate the last one earlier," Willow replied, looking at the cooking spit.
"Too bad, they would have been an excellent source of information on the local area," Xander said, as he drug another two goblin corpses off to dispose of.
"Is this the wrong time to mention I'm hungry?" Buffy asked.
"A bit squicky as far as timing goes," Willow admitted, "but not a bad idea, I could do with some food as well."
Xander paused as he searched a couple of corpses. "You're a cleric, cast Create Food and Drink."
"I don't have a holy symbol," Buffy reminded him.
"Use your hammer as a holy symbol," Xander suggested.
"Would that work?" Buffy asked.
"Some dwarven sects use the hammer as a holy symbol," Willow recalled.
"I'll have to disallow that," Jonno's voice boomed, "there's a big difference between a blessed and venerated symbol of creation and a weapon, regardless of the common shape."
"Jonno?" Xander and Willow chorused.
"The GM if you please," he corrected them.
"Can you get us out of this?" Buffy quickly called out.
"You know what you have to do already," he replied.
"Is there any help you can give us?" Willow asked.
"As much as any GM," Jonathan assured her.
"What does that mean?" Buffy asked.
"It means he'll play fair," Xander replied with a chuckle. "How about our start up gear?"
"I'll let you choose it after you've gone through what you've gotten from the goblins," his voice boomed again, "that should make up for starting off naked."
"Cool," Xander replied and went back to looting corpses and disposing of the bodies.
"I don't suppose I could use my actual stats rather than the ones I rolled?" Buffy asked hopefully.
"Play em as they lay," Jonno replied.
"Anything important we need to know?" Willow asked.
"I normally punish alignment infractions harshly; but the game adjusts you to your alignments until play ends, so that warning can be skipped."
"Xander!" Willow yelled, causing him to come running.
"What's wrong?" Xander asked, looking at her worriedly.
"Please tell me you changed my alignment from Chaotic Evil?" she begged.
"Relax Wills, I made you Chaotic Neutral."
"Thank god!" she said, hugging him tightly. "And yet another reason I was cast down."
"What's the whole alignment deal?" Buffy asked.
"Good and evil are pretty self-explanatory," Xander said, "but we also have chaotic and lawful, lawful evil for instance would try and twist the laws but obey them. While Chaotic Good would ignore the laws if they felt they were evil."
"So, Chaotic Neutral?" Buffy asked.
"Might save your life, might steal your bike," Willow replied giggling, "as a member of the party you're safe from bike stealing because only idiots would work against their own party."
"What am I?" Buffy asked.
"Chaotic Good," Xander replied, "what's right is right regardless of law."
"Works for me," Buffy nodded.
"So what did you put for me?" Xander asked.
"Neutral Evil," Willow admitted sheepishly.
"You're evil?" Buffy exclaimed.
"Neutral evil Buff, in this case it means I'm selfish and I can take or leave laws depending on how much of a pain in the ass they are. Not the best alignment for my usual self, but it's not going to make me kick kittens for shits and giggles either."
"I guess that works," Buffy said thoughtfully.
"Okay," Xander said, "let's finish so we can get geared up."
Giles blinked and looked around as he walked, his field of view was enormous! After a moment or two he realized he was walking on four legs and someone was leading him; he was a horse!
"Elven ranger with 19 dex but can't ride a horse," Warren said, shaking his head.
"I forgot and used the points on a different proficiency," Andrew admitted, "and I don't see your human fighter/thief riding either."
"I used mine on air based riding," Warren replied. "I can ride a horse in the real world, but here I can ride a flying animal!"
"You make a very compelling argument; I'll get lessons when I raise level," Andrew replied.
"First order of business we hit a dungeon," Warren said, "I bought maps of all the best places for low level characters so we can clean up."
"What about the Scepter of Endings?"
"Let them find it; we got three goals, gold – ale – women."
"I'm not sure ..."
"Elvish women and with the right amount of gold and a polymorph spell equals catgirls!"
"All I need now is a holy symbol," Buffy said, "I don't suppose I can use some of my starting money for bra and panties?"
"Sorry, those are modern inventions," Jonno replied.
"Great I can create food and drink with a snap of my fingers but I can't get decent underwear to save my life," Buffy complained, "I wish I could create underwear with a snap of my fingers."
"Granted!" Jonno's voice boomed.
"What?" the three chorused.
"Buffy made a wish," Jonno explained, "I was just letting her know it was granted."
"How'd she get a wish?" Willow asked curiously.
"The dagger she found on one of the goblin's was a luck blade," Jonathan replied, "she used its last wish."
"What did you wish for?" Xander asked.
"To be able to create underwear with a snap of my fingers," Buffy admitted with a groan.
"Cool," Xander said, "I could use boxers when you get around to it."
"Bra and panties here," Willow added.
"But I could have wished us home!" Buffy whined.
"Game wishes aren't that powerful," Willow explained, "a minor gift or magical item is a good use for them."
"GM's are notorious for making people pay for greedy wishes," Xander chuckled, "better a wish used for something useful than to have it hanging around like an unexploded landmine just waiting for the wrong words to trigger it."
"Just to be sure," Willow muttered, "I wish to know how to get these bangles off."
They waited but nothing happened.
"Good," Willow said, "just imagine accidentally singing the Oscar Meyer Wiener song, 'I wish I were an Oscar Meyer Wiener, ZAP!"
"Yeah, that'd suck," Buffy admitted.
"I wish I had a full set of horseshoes," Xander said and waited for a moment before continuing, "imagine saying I wish you'd shut up and how many ways that could go wrong since the guiding force on the wish is your anger."
"Suddenly I'm very happy with my wish!" Buffy declared and snapped her fingers before cooing over the black thong and half cup bra that appeared.
"Me next!" Willow begged.
Buffy snapped her fingers and a crimson set appeared.
Willow frowned as she wiggled and pulled but couldn't get them to fit comfortably, "They don't fit!"
Buffy tried again.
Willow adjusted the new set and sighed. "Still no luck."
"GM guy?" Buffy asked.
"You have to know her measurements," he explained, "it magically creates underwear, it doesn't magically size them, because your concept of underwear is from the real world and not bound by local rules."
"What are your sizes?" Buffy asked.
"No idea," Willow shrugged, "different body here."
"Oh yeah, I'm gonna have to check by hand."
Xander tried to pretend he wasn't watching.
Buffy stepped behind the naked Willow and wrapped her arms around her, hefting the redhead's breasts and bouncing them in her hands.
Willow moaned, "Careful; those things are more sensitive than my normal set."
"Sorry but your skin is like butter," Buffy said and stopped playing with Willow's breasts.
There was a slapping sound as Xander's grass kilt split and fell to the ground, not designed to withstand the pressure it had been under; he quickly turned and walked away naked once more.
"Hate to see him go," Buffy began absently.
"But I love to watch him leave," Willow murmured, completing the statement.
"Do you need some time alone or can we talk about your choices for a bane and allergy?"
"What's wrong with my choices?" Xander asked.
"Volcanic rock is a bit too wide a category, and why do you have a silver allergy at all?"
"I put down a mild silver allergy because I thought it was required of all shifters."
"Okay, I can see the point behind that – you have two points of Merits to spend and need to narrow down your bane a bit," Jon replied.
"Obsidian then," Xander decided, "less used than silver but used enough to still be a threat."
"I've got an idea for using those Merit points and since I doubt we'll find anything for me among the goblins we should discuss equipment as well."
Andrew cursed and hurriedly strung his bow while Warren drew his sword and waited for the bullywugs to come to him, using his buckler to deflect any spears thrown his way.
Keeping a close eye and sidestepping the occasional spear, Giles nibbled on a bush and waited for the two young men to get their acts together and kill the jumped up frogs.
"Got it!" Andrew announced and had three arrows in the air before he took another breath.
Seeing they wouldn't be able to take down the travelers at a distance, while the reverse might be true, the five uninjured bullywugs rushed forward, leaving the dead one Andrew had turned into a pincushion behind.
Warren found he had his hands full as he had to use both sword and shield to deflect the attacks of the two that had targeted him.
Andrew had dropped one bullywug before they were too close for bow range and he had to draw his short sword.
The final bullywug had circled around and gone for the horse, as it had the most meat and carried their supplies.
Giles waited next to a tree, pretending not to see the frog man until it thrust at his neck with its spear. Giles moved his head just enough to let the spear by so it thunked into the tree, not giving it a chance to pull its spear free Giles reared up and brought his front hooves down crushing its skull.
Warren managed to fend off both bullywugs before one made the mistake of trying to circle around behind him which allowed him the half a second he needed to put some of his strength behind a blow and cut through its spear, beheading it and its wielder in a single strike.
Andrew fought desperately, having planned on taking down everything at a distance he'd only taken basic proficiency in blades. Fortunately Giles had seen what trouble he was in and mule kicked the bullywug from behind, breaking the majority of its bones and killing it.
Warren easily batted aside the final bullywug's spear with his buckler and gutted it.
As the three stood panting Giles began to glow, his muscles gaining further definition and his mane a silky shine.
"What was that?" Warren asked.
"He leveled up," Jon's voice echoed around them.
"Andrew's horse leveled up before we did?"
"It doesn't take a lot of XP to level up a horse," Jon replied.
"How about us?" Andrew asked.
"Already half way to leveling."
"Cool!" The two beamed and started collecting loot.
"He's going to need a leather kilt," Willow said, "possibly chain mail."
"And underwear," Buffy chimed brightly, "I should measure him."
Willow grabbed Buffy by the back of her bra strap, "You weren't planning on measuring him without me, were you?"
"Well not now," Buffy admitted, "just once or twice a week, and maybe when I'm feeling really tense."
"Any measuring of Xander to be done will be done with me there," Willow said firmly.
Xander entered the main cave where the girls were, wearing a heavy leather and bronze kilt. "Cancel the boxers," he said, "I've got it covered."
AN:Typing by Godogma.