The Fumbling Barbarian

Posted on June 01, 2018

You need to understand my DM before I begin this story. He followed the rules, but liked to add twists to encounters. You know, things like ‘you don't run around cities with weapons drawn’.

This story started out in in a city near Greyhawk (AD&D), and our party consisted of a Paladin, a Barbarian (me), a Wizard, a Cleric, and a Thief. We were wandering around the town, trying to help the locals figure out what was happening to their livestock. We entered a crowded area with lots of people gawking at a man fighting what appeared to be a bear (yeah, in town). We decided to jump into action. As we were coming up from behind the beast, we were allowed to act first.

Everyone rolled initiative. Lo and behold, I rolled the highest. I sprung toward the bear, wielding my axe and taking a swipe at his head.

DM: Roll to hit.

Me: 1

DM: You go to pull the axe from your belt, and with your great strength you rip the belt off and your pants fall. You swing and notice that your blade guard is still on the weapon and it harmlessly bounces off the creature. All the others act although they have lost the initiative. Bear and man both transform into two Demons. It seems the people are mesmerized by them

My time to act comes again. Ignoring the fact that my nethers are in the breeze, I go to swing again at the bear-now-Demon.

DM: Roll to hit.

Me:1. GAH!

DM: With your second critical failure, you trip on your pants as you rush in and tumble between the Demon’s legs. (DM rolls) Luckily, the Demon is unable to grasp you as you roll through.

*All the others act again, including both Demons.

My time once again comes. I announced that I was going to take my axe and slam it into the Demon’s skull.

DM: Roll.

Me: 1. Oh dear god! Dice from hell.

DM: With your third Critical Failure you take your axe and cleanly bring it down on the demon’s skull, only to see that your axe head has fallen off.

Me: May I cry now?

DM: *laughs*

Everyone else acts once again. I noticed that we took one Demon down.

Me: I turn towards the second Demon and throw my axe head at it.

DM: Roll.

Me: 1. I have no words.

DM: Your fourth Critical failure. Hm. Okay, your axe head goes sailing through the air at your target, passing by him, and spins around a post and heads back at you. Roll to dodge.

Me: 1. WTH.

DM: It hits you in the chest, doing 15 damage.

My friends kill the Demon. Although I have not played AD&D in years, that Barbarian to this day still insists that someone has put a curse on him against Demons. He even has to roll at the beginning of the initial round if he comes face to face with one.

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