So, we left Galatea fretting at the chains that bound her to her dull home life and her steady, kind betrothed Tyrion. This gaming session started with Tyrion's disappearance. He'd left on his work bench a roughed out carving made from an irridescent wood that no-one can identify. Everyone was mystified -- he's shown no inclination towards disappearing or sculpting before.
Galatea goes out to look for him and on the road is surprised to be jumped and enthusiastically kissed. It's Tyrion, but there's a strange light in his eyes and a strange giggling tone to his laugh. When she demands an explanation he prances off into the woods, still giggling.
Galatea, her family and Tyrion's are now very concerned. Their only lead is this green wood, which came in on a special shipment ordered by Tyrion. When it is suggested that the wise trees at the Grove of the Ancients might be able to help, Galatea jumps at the chance to
An uneventful journey (apart from picking up a bit of info about her friends Panril, Tomalok, Tikka and Honrid from a helpful innkeeper) brought her to the dryads. Romulin advised her that she had a spell stuck to her (a leftover from her previous adventures). He took it off; and then listened to her account of her fiance's transformation.
The wood is cursed, it seems, and the poison is slowly turning Tyrion into a satyr. He will probably try to make for Satyrnar but he can be saved if Galatea is able to intercept him and administer an antidote before the transformation is complete. It's a tall order -- the road to Satyrnar passes close by a Hoard camp.
That night the Dryads are invaded by fierce fuzzballs -- Galatea joins in the fight and acquits herself well (despite some awful rolls).
The next day, however, the dice turned against her -- she met with two orcs on the road and though she contemplated trying to sneak round them, decided that she'd been spotted and would have to face them directly. It was not a good encounter, and she didn't make it out the other side.
It's gutting when your character dies and Meredith was just as distressed by this turn of events. We briefly discussed bringing Galatea back to life -- we both felt we'd invested in her and grown fond of her; but there seemed to be no authentic way of doing it. This world is dangerous: the weapons are real; the wounds are real. I mourned, shrugged and moved on -- it's the gambling aspect of RPG. The more you invest in a character, the more you get out of the game; and the more you invest the higher the stakes at every combat. High stakes make for exciting gaming -- I get a real adrenalin rush from risking a character I've worked hard at, and real feelings for relief when they survive a tricky encounter.
We rolled up a new character, Sylvya Starshade, another Night Elf with itchy feet, but a rogue this time. She was following Galatea to practise her rogue skills and witnessed her death. She raids Galatea's pack and makes off with her stuff, notably the +1AC necklace and the Snowdrop Robe. She can't use the robe herself -- too cumbersome -- but she is thinking she might get a reward from Galatea's family if she brings the sad news to them and the robe will act as proof.