The Let's Play Archive

The Bard's Tale

by Stabbey_the_Clown

Part 41: Chapter 10-01

Argh! So many words!

Chapter 10-01

Red Caps on Patrol

: Though the grass of the Greenlands was beautiful, it was permeated with danger as the dreaded Red Caps patrolled the land.

: The Red Caps, as was well known, were scavengers and cannibals. Let's hope they find the taste of Bard appealing.

Many of the Red Caps were busy dispatching some Druids who were wandering the fields. The Bard could have avoided both easily. But he was not about to leave any Druids he came across unmolested.

The Bard soon came upon the tracks of some dread beast. Even as he examined the tracks a fellow who clearly had a serious problem approached.

Meet MacRath

Macrath: Ach Laddie! Hye yon bogle awa, an' its 'twa pund sterlin' 'll gi' ye!
: Come again?
: Well, maybe clearly was the wrong word.
Macrath: I'v tol ye! Beno afeerer, bu' claught yer dirk an' run yon rigwoodie bogle thro'!

: Tell you what, spit the rocks outta your mouth, then we'll talk.
Macrath: The bogle! The Nuckelavee! Ach! I wist ye ha' go' naw usquabae in yer blude!
: Would it help if I just killed the Nuckelavee?
Macrath: Twood o corse! Na gae on ya vauntie creeshie skellum!
: I'll take that as a yes.

Experience: 1650

The Bard indicated to the man to stay put.

BOSS: Nuckelavee

The Nuckelavee summoned a skull-like entity which raced for the Bard...

... and passed right through, sapping the mana from the Bard's instrument.

But the Bard was resolute, and soon, even the fearsome Nuckelavee was no more. The Bard cut out the ferocious beasts heart and held it high in triumph.

MacRath - or more precisely, who the Bard guessed was MacRath, rushed up.

Nothing's ever simple, is it?

MacRath: Oh Ma. Hten skillum! Ye died it! Em ut ur disspal.
: You better be thanking me! I'm betting tha you're the man I'm here to see, are you MacRath?
MacRath: Aye, aam MacRath an' whit did ye need me fur?
: Well, I almost think Dugan is playing some kind of joke on me.
MacRath: Dugan? Dugan sent ye? Ye main b 'at Bard at he was talkin' abit. Where be ault Dugan hidin hiself these days?

: Ah, bloody hell, looks like I'm gonna have to drag you back to see Dugan, maybe he speaks... whatever it is you're speaking.
: With MacRath in tow and the Nuckelavee nothing more then a memory, the Bard headed back to Dounby, hoping to decipher MacRath's ramblings and move one step closer to earning his reward.

Experience: 2750

The Bard returned to Dounby with MacRath, but he didn't sneak in through the tunnels. He went right down the main street, with an eye to slaughter any Druid who made the mistake of standing in his way.

The Bard encountered no further resistance on the way to the Aiken Drum.

Dugan and MacRath

: You've got to help me here. I can't understand a bleedin' word he's saying. Is this even MacRath?
Dugan: What do you mean? Of course that's MacRath.
: Ask him a question.
Dugan: Hello there old friend, how are you gettin' along with this young scamp?

MacRath: Och, braw Dugan braw tae see ye an aw, thes bonnie lad haur saved mah hide frae tha Nuckelavee 'at some trosk released.
Dugan: Ah, he's speaking in a rare Scottish tongue. I forgot that most people these days don't know it. Fortunately, I do.
: What's he on about?
Dugan: So far, just that he's grateful for being rescued from the monster that some idiot released. But I'll get more information. Teel me mair, what happened?

MacRath: It was gantin': that undeid rose frae tha grae an' overtook mah castle. Ah fled only tae be attacked by 'at hideous creature, but Ah hud tae lae behin' tha axe.
Dugan: Ominous indeed.
MacRath: Teel yer mukker haur 'at if he'll help me tak' back mah castle, he can retriece that shadaw ax
Dugan: Oooooooo. You'll like that.
: What?
Dugan: Whit will he huv tae div?
MacRath: Tak' me back tae that ruins ay mah castle an' I'll shaw heem tha entrance. There's a trap duir leadin' doon intae the dungeons, but I've got that key.
Dugan: Clever!
: Come again?
Dugan: I'm certain he'll help.

MacRath: If 'e tinnie get through doz dungeons intact O'd say us princess 'as 'erself a worthy champion. O' cose ay wouldn't bet ed 'im mak'n it out, as yew se this is de rite git?
Dugan: Ay thought de same th'n myself fe a blind bit, but ay am pretty certain.

: All right. That's t, that's it. What are you two on about?
Dugan: Right here's the deal. MacRath's going to take you to his castle... well the ruins of it at least.

: Only if he buys me dinner first.
Dugan: Where he'll open up a trapdoor that leads down into the dungeons.
: What's inside?
Dugan: The Shadow Axe, like I told you before, he was holding it for you. He had to leave it in his dungeon when all the trouble stated. I've instructed him to take you to it.
: Now we're talking. What else?

Dugan: Oh, just some undead warriors. Now, once you have the Shadow Ax, you'll journey south along the coast-
: Wait a moment. Undead warriors? How many?
Dugan: A few. A score.

: Well which is it? A few or a score? It's a big difference you know.

Dugan: A few score. And when they're all dead, you'll head south to the coast, the third tower is located on a small island just offshore. You should have no trouble securing passage to the tower. Right, I'm off. It's getting dangerous around here.
: Well? Anything to say?

MacRath: I'll gi' ye' mine Shadah Hax, but guite it cannie, aye?
: Sorry I asked.

Experience: 3850

Level 16
Vitality increased to 20 (Maximum)

The Bard followed MacRath back through the Greenlands to the ruins of MacRath's castle. MacRath didn't go for the main entrance, which was blocked by rubble anyway, but headed off to one side.

The Graveyard

: The happenings at the local cemetery told the whole story, and it was not a pretty one. The dead were rising more frequently, and the land was becoming more and more chaotic. Hopefully MacRath could clear up some of the mystery.

MacRath: Ah kent it was a bad sign when the deid began tae rise frae their grae, especially mah mammy in law. It was toogh enaw killin' 'er that first time. Ha ha!
: I wish I knew what the hell you were saying.
: I don't even know what he's saying.

With the dead quiet for now, the Bard approached the door to the dungeon.

MacRath: Thes is that entrance cheil, gang doon an' fin' tha shadaw axe.
: So this is the place you and Dugan were talking about. And and I have to do is wander down there in the darkness with god knows what trying to kill me and hope I stumble onto the Shadow Axe? Great.
MacRath: Mental luck cheil! Rid mah ham ay those undeid an' tha shadaw axe is yours.

: Uh, sure. And, uh.... I'd gi ye thir breeks o' mine fer ai blink o' yer yousie lik.

MacRath: Ach! Ye creeshie poofter!

Experience: 2200

Before the Bard entered the dungeon, he decided to wander around a bit, and have a breath of fresh air or two. Just above the entrance, he discovered a series of inscribed gravestones. Though weather-work, they were still quite readable. It was clear from the wear that they were arranged in chronological order. The Bard decided to start with the oldest.


Skull Marker
: The Bard found an insignia and an epitaph, commemorating a fallen Lord of the MacRath clan. The epitaph read:
Lord Bauder MacRath
Our Lord was born in a darker time
Where hope came on the edge of a blade
From his courage and bravery
Our Lord died in the brighter days he had made

Tree Marker
: This epitaph read:
Lord Pershing MacRath
Our Lord is remembered for his undying faith
He raised our family from lesser ranks
He humbly sought the best for all
And our benefits demand his thanks

Moon Marker
: An epitaph. It read:
Lord Merrimont MacRath
Our Lord is left beneath this mound
We hope some happiness he has found
We know he lays without a sound
So says his mistress who cut him down.

Sun Marker
: An ominous marker presented itself to the Bard. It read:
Here lies the Bard. May he rest in peace, no longer making life miserable for those around him.
: Not funny.
: Maybe not to you... Oh very well. The epitaph read:
Lord Apono MacRath
Our Lord who brought prosperity
His wisdom lent without brevity
His death brings tears from above
And with him dies all our love

Chicken Marker
: It was obvious that the Bard had a fascination with the dead. This epitaph read:
Lord Lokin MacRath
Our Lord feared his wife
More than he feared death
And with his butter knife
Took his last breath

Song Marker
: The epitaph on the grave marker read:
Lord Fabian MacRath
Our Lord was known for his angelic voice
Over hills and moors his song would carry
Not a subject could rejoice
The day he ate a nightshade berry

The Bard decided that loitering around the cemetery was now less attractive then braving the dungeon, so he entered. Or tried to, anyway. He felt a now familiar paralyzation overtake him. He turned to once again see the three singing Trow that had been dogging his footsteps.

SONG: You're a foolish one

You are a jerk, a piece of work,
This mission you'll be blowin'
There's one thing 'both this castle here
You surely should be knowing'
That once inside your magic's gone
and danger will be growing
And if you meet the Shadow Axe
Your blood it will be flowing
You're knowin', it's growin', you're blowin'

You're a foolish one
Someone who should be shunned.
You've buggered up this land so much
Your work is never done.
And when we see you comin'
We'll turn our tails and run
You are the lad we love to hate
You are a fooling one.

It's fun, to run, you're done.

You aren't brave, You aren't strong
or even that imposin'
You have no magic helmet,
or kilt or lederhosen.
If danger were to read its head
your feet would sure be frozen
A sorry wuss, but nevertheless,
the sod that has been Chosen.

A frozen, lederhosen, imposin'.

You're a foolish one
Someone who should be shunned.
You've buggered up this land so much
Your work is never done.
And when we see you comin'
We'll turn our tails and run
You are the lad we love to hate
You are a foolish one.
It's fun, to run, WE'RE DONE!

"You'd better run!" the Bard called angrily after the fleeing Trow.

Then he stepped into the dungeon.

All Movies:


Meet MacRath

BOSS: Nuckelavee

Nothing's ever simple, is it?

Dugan and MacRath

The Graveyard


SONG: You're a Foolish One