Book 6: Act 1 - The Folk-Moot at Rhosgobel

It is the year 2946 of the Third Age, and the lands east of the Misty Mountains are astir. From the cloud-shrouded peaks above the High Pass to the spider-infested gloom of the forest of Mirkwood, paths long-deserted are trodden once again. Busy merchants carry their wares to new markets, messengers bring tidings from foreign realms, and kings send forth armed men to extend their influence and the rule of law. Some say that a new age of freedom has begun, a time for adventure and great deeds to reclaim glories lost in long centuries of oppression and decline.

But adventures are not really things that people go out and look for. They are dangerous and rarely end well. While it is true that a handful of valiant individuals set out to make their mark on the world, for others it seems that adventure chooses them, as though it is the path they are fated to tread. They are restless warriors, curious scholars and wanderers, always eager to seek what was lost or explore what was forgotten. Ordinary people call them adventurers, and when they return successful, they call them heroes. But if they fail, no one will even remember their names...

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Book 6: Act 1 - The Folk-Moot at Rhosgobel

Post by Vardaen » Tue Nov 15, 2016 7:02 pm

Image ...they dwelt largely in scattered homesteads and villages, and if they drew together into small townships they were poorly defended, at best by dikes and wooden fences. Also they were lightly armed, chiefly with bows, for they had little metal and the few smiths among them had no great skill.

-- The Peoples of Middle-Earth


April 3rd, 2949, The Third Age, Spring

Outside the storm continues to drop its rain on the region. The snows of winter have mostly melted, but in dark places it lingers; like below the eves of Mirkwood Forest. The spring rains have started and have washed away much of the white snow leaving behind the brown of mud and the promise of green to come. Tonight a good storm has come driving all the locals into the Easterly Inn's main room tonight. The winter months have been good here, the Brandybucks, with the help of Finn and Borir have expanded a few portions, and have done good trade from the smithy and of rooms to rent.

Tonight a half dozen travelers spend the night out of the rain, with heavy plates, and draining mugs.

Three of that company are dwarves from the Blue Mountains heading home from Erebor. They have parked out in the stable a loaded cart with goods for trade. Their faithful hound sleeps in the shelter with the wagon to act as alarm if anyone dares to steal from them. Dindy has assured the dwarves they have no fear of theft and that the poor dog should be brought in, but they will hear none of it. Despite this they have proven good guests, with deep pockets, and many good tales to tell. From them comes the rumors of trouble between Dale and the Woodland Realm this last winter. It would seem some men cut down some silver beeches and have stirred up trouble.

Guest too in the Easterly Inn are a pair of Leofrings. They are tall men, blonde hair, and grim faced. Two fine horses sit inside the stables around the back, horses which they hold in high regard. They have spoken little since their arrival. Only enough for you to have learned they are traveling north on some errand and plan to leave when morning arrives.
The Leofrings
The people of Leof are close kin to the folk of Rohan. They are descended from followers of Eorl who strayed during the migration south. They are nomads, wandering through all the Vales of Anduin in search of good grazing for their herds. Unlike most Northmen of the Vales of Anduin, the Leofrings have preserved their ancestors’ superior horsmanship, a skill so legendary that the Dwarves once thought the Éothéod were half-horse, half-men.

The Leofrings have a great dread of forests, especially Mirkwood, and consider it bad luck to walk beneath the trees. They travel in cohorts of a dozen families or so, led by a headman. These cohorts wander through the Vales, travelling as far south as the borders of Rohan and as far north as the Gore, but they all return to Dwarrowhall for the Yuletide every year. Most of them dwell west of Anduin.

In years past, they were friends of the Woodmen, but as the power of Dol Guldur grew, some of the Leofrings chose to bow before the Shadow and traded with the folk of the East Nether Vale. They sold horses to them, and some Leofrings even entered into the service of the Necromancer. Then, a year before the Battle of Five Armies, a host of Orcs attacked the Leofrings as they gathered at Dwarrowhall, and they fled the North.
The sixth visitor tonight is a Beorning man, Beleran the Dream Runner, seems to be his name. He came north a week ago with trade goods from Beornings. He is both fierce and willful, but he has caused no trouble and the matters of his trip have mostly been resolved. He's brought some rumors of slaughtered livestock of the Beornings that strayed too close to Mirkwood this winter.

The fellowship has gathered once more here from around the Vale. For many months Varuthil stayed in Rhosgobel with Rathar. That was not long ago when the Brown Wizard handed the pair a letter, "Take this north to the Easterly Inn. Give it to Gandalf when you see him, and see him you will if I know the Grey Pilgrim at all. Rumor of his travels have come to me, and I wish for him to have this. He won't miss the chance to sit and have some Hobbit cooking and a pipe there among your friends. Afterwards, when you have done this return to me. All of your company. Rathar will know this, but perhaps Varuthil you will not. At the start of each summer the Woodman folk gather for a Moot here in Rhosgobel from all their Houses. Traders and merchants, and envoys of the other Free Folk are welcome to attend. I would have you present this year, you have done much for the Woodmen, and I think it would do them good to see you there to remind them they do not stand alone in Wilderland." He then goes off again, but he adds at the last, "Return no later than the first of June!"

So it was that Varuthil and Rathar traveled north to join Finn, Borir and Pipkin at the Easterly Inn.
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Welcome to the next Adventure Phase! Also welcome silverfox as our mysterious Beorning. Please make him feel welcome and let's work him into the game.
"He that breaks a thing to find out what it is has left the path of wisdom." - Gandalf
J.R.R. Tolkien, Council of Elrond, The Fellowship of the Ring

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Book 6: Act 2 - The Folk-Moot at Rhosgobel

Post by Muskrat » Wed Nov 16, 2016 6:28 pm

Varuthil goes to her companions and greets them. "It is good to see you all again--and good to be here at the inn again." She comes across as a little stiff, her old coldness having returned somewhat in the time she has been away from them. "I have a message from Radagast. Well, really two. One is a letter for the wizard Gandalf the Grey--has he been here yet? Radagast is confident he will pass this way. And he has asked us to go to Rhosbogel, to attend the Moot of the Woodmen. He says it would raise their spirits if we are there, reminding them that they do not stand alone against the growing Shadow."
Varuthil is not exactly a social type, so she's unlikely to be the one to approach Beleran.

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Book 6: Act 2 - The Folk-Moot at Rhosgobel

Post by Shurijo » Wed Nov 16, 2016 6:59 pm

Borir stands next to his fellow kin talking to them about their travels. He asks about the Blue Mountains and how Erebor has fared over the last few seasons. With a mug of ale in hand, he asks his fellow dwarves about his cousins and relatives who still linger at the Blue Mountains and troubles they've seen along their way.

Once Varuthil approaches Borir, he tries to ignore the elf as he continues peppering the dwarves with questions. At the persistence of the lady-elf, the dwarf excuses himself from his kin and and moves to join her along with the others to listen to her words.

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Book 6: Act 2 - The Folk-Moot at Rhosgobel

Post by Blubbo_Baggins » Wed Nov 16, 2016 11:55 pm

Finn has had a great winter at the Inn. Things have gone as well as could be hoped, and word got quickly out about the new stables. Soon many Leofrings, Elves, and others who had horses came to stay. Naturally all the investors are pleased and hopeful for an even better Spring.

When Beleran comes to visit, Finn is out working with Borir on the forge. The Dwarves had already arrived, and a few things needed seeing to so that their guests would be able to repair tools or sharpen swords with ease. When he returns, he sees the stranger has already been taken care of by Agatha and Dody. "Welcome to the Easterly Inn. Have you been this way before?" Finn asks. The Lakeman figures he has; if he is from the lands of Beorn it would be unlikely for him to not have ever stopped in the only public house East of the Misty Mountains and West of Mirkwood. Hearing of the slaughtered livestock gets Finn's attention, but it doesn't surprise him. "What does Beorn say it is? Just a pack of Orc wandering through, or something more sinister? We have certainly seen more bands than usual, starting last Summer."

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Finn is in the main room, strumming his lute, when Varuthil and Rathar walk in. He stands to welcome them, shaking Rathar's hand and goes to greet Varuthil with a hug.

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Book 6: Act 2 - The Folk-Moot at Rhosgobel

Post by silverfoxdmt73 » Thu Nov 17, 2016 4:42 pm

Beleran is sat alone at a table with a cup of water and the remains of a very hearty and much appreciated meal, cooked by one of the hobbit's that ran the small but decidedly comfortable inn.

Beorn had sent him the short distance north with a sack full of honey cakes and a few other odds and ends that he said would be appreciated here. He received a warm welcome from the hobbits that ran the place and had felt comfortable enough to stay and wait out a spring storm that had settled over the vales for a few days longer than anticipated.

He was contemplating returning to Beorn's home the following morning when a blonde haired young man approaches him. He takes in the man's attire and recalls hearing him play some music earlier.

"Aye." He replies, somewhat guardedly. "Once or twice at Beorn's request."

He shrugs his shoulders at the Lake-man's query, "There is always something sinister going on under the eaves of that forest." He adds.

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Book 6: Act 2 - The Folk-Moot at Rhosgobel

Post by Muskrat » Thu Nov 17, 2016 6:14 pm

Varuthil reacts to Finn's hug as if she has never been hugged before in her life--she stands there stiffly, then says awkwardly, "Ah, it is good to see you too, Finn." She does not return the hug, though, after some hesitation, she pats him on the shoulder. When he releases her, she looks relieved.

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Book 6: Act 2 - The Folk-Moot at Rhosgobel

Post by Blubbo_Baggins » Thu Nov 17, 2016 8:37 pm

Nice Muskrat...just what I expected from her :-)
Finn can see his enthusiasm took a step a bit too far, and releases Varuthil. After they have settled, he points out the other visitor in the common hall. "Friends, this is Beleran, who is staying at the Inn for a time. He knows Beorn as a friend, and that was good enough for me."

Turning to the man Finn adds, "These are friends with whom I have traveled much, Varuthil of the Woodland Realm, and Rathar, of Woodmen Town. Or is it Rhosgobel now?"

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Book 6: Act 2 - The Folk-Moot at Rhosgobel

Post by shipwreck » Sat Nov 19, 2016 6:31 pm

Rathar clears his throat. "Woodman Town," he answers. "Though I hope all the Houses draw nearer soon so that the people feel welcome wherever they may be."

The Wood-goer is a little off his guard in the conversation, having grown used to the silent company of Varuthil. They exchanged few words along the journey north, both seeming to prefer the sounds of the nearby wood to speech. He may, or at least feigned to, pick up a few notes on how to best listen to the rocks and trees.

The warmth of the inn is stifling, too, but he's eager to retry his pipe-work and rejoin his friends. After bowing to Beleran politely, he turns and roars at Borir, "You old dwarf! Introduce me to your friends!"

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Book 6: Act 2 - The Folk-Moot at Rhosgobel

Post by Shurijo » Mon Nov 21, 2016 7:26 pm

"Old!" Borir hurumphs and scoffs at the notion. "Ain't old, you darned tallfolk. Got a nice beard, but it ain't grey or long just yet." He then slaps his leg with his hand as he laughs.

Once he catches his breath, he points out the other dwarves "Well, there's Gamil, Gróin, and Frerin." Looking over at the others, he says, "I think Varuthil seeks our council. Let's see what the lady-elf needs first, then you'll join us for some ale and meat!"

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Re: Book 6: Act 2 - The Folk-Moot at Rhosgobel

Post by silverfoxdmt73 » Mon Nov 21, 2016 7:49 pm

As Finn introduces his companions to Beleran, he acknowledges the others with a simple nod and a raising of his cup. Though at Rathar's greeting he at least rumbles a "Well met." to the young man.

He flinches a little as the woodman quickly turns and shouts at a dwarven newcomer, though manages to resist the urge to grab for his axe, the handle of which rest against the table top beside his right hand.

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