Hug your Teddy

Posted on December 01, 2017

I'm quite new to D&D (my nerd roots fall more to electronic media, but I have a soft spot for pen and paper). Our party: A Monk (myself), a Cleric, a Dwarven Warden, and a Wilden Avenger. The Warden and the Cleric have been playing since second edition, so we generally listen to what they have to say, including our DM, who is still a little green on that side of the screen.

The Warden, Bramblebeard Rockbottom, was built as a monster, with every part of his character crafted to turn getting hit into slaughtering foes ("HAVE YOU HIT ROCKBOTTOM!?"). My monk, Budric, had a bad habit of falling unconscious at least once per encounter due to some failings on my part. Once, misunderstanding how jumping works, I tried to do a crazy acrobatic flip as part of a power and failed to jump the 8 feet I’d planned, landing square between two archers who quickly dispatched me.

In our latest adventure we were wandering south towards Waterdeep. While crossing a forest, we were suddenly set upon by two Owlbears. We all got into position and started pummelling away with our level 5 characters. After a few rounds, it started to feel more like an exercise in futility. Despite all our efforts, they weren’t even bloodied. While I was saving my dailies, everyone was pretty much down to at-will powers. Then, from the brush, come eight more Owlbears barreling towards us.

"Well, hell," was the general reaction, and we all began considering what to reincarnate as.

"Roll for perception,” our DM prompted. Apparently this new group of Owlbears had collars on, but we were still concerned with our survival.

Two of our party began discussing this new information. I stepped out for a quick cigarette, and to consider my tactical offensive options. I realized I had the perfect setup to hit and stun almost all of them in one round. I hurried back into the room to find it was my turn.

My colleagues were paying little attention as I excitedly pushed my powers to the limit. A fit of Kung-Fu fury! Mantis Step! Slide the four new owlbears into close proximity of each other, and pummel them mercilessly! Shift two squares away, burn an action point, and THUNDERBOLT SURGE!

The dice were in my favor, and I threw a blast of thunder from my hands, damaging the closest and knocking them all prone. I turned to my party, suggesting that we now escape, to see drooping jaws and facepalms.

"Dude, they're not our enemies..."

I'd missed out on the revelation that these new "enemies" passed up two opportunities to attack me on their way to the other pair of Owlbears, the ones that DID attack us. So now I might have pissed off our new ‘friends.’

Quick to save the situation, our Warden grabbed my shoulder and bellowed with an intimidation check... 4.

So the new, angered Owlbears continued to close in. They grappled Rockbottom and vanished into thin air. Next, the Avenger was grabbed and POOF!, only myself and the Cleric were left. He escaped a grab and tried to hoof it.

"Ah, ok," I said. "I look around, embarrassed, and I hug the Owlbear."

The DM laughed, and I'm whisked away to the next story area. The first time my Monk was able to be any kind of awesome was against friendly characters. I've since quit smoking.

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