Defend Your Herd: a forest game

For Fangorn is old, old even as the Elves would reckon it.
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Defend Your Herd! - a game

What is this game?
You are an Ent (or other being**; see below) shepherding your herd of trees. You will start the game with 100 trees in your herd. The goal of the game is to have the most trees still alive in your herd at the end of the game. Dice rolls will add (even rolls) or deduct (odd rolls) trees from your herd and give you a RP prompt to follow. A simple example could be a fire starting and burning down ten of your trees.

Guidelines:
Don’t feel obligated to RP a strictly canonical Ent. Maybe you are a desert-dwelling Ent in Far Harad and you have a herd of cacti. Be as creative or as classical (e.g., a beech-herding Fangorn Ent) as you like!

**Please feel free to play one of the following:
- a book-Ent or Entwife (described as troll-like)
- a movie-Ent or Entwife (more like a talking, walking tree)
- a huorn
- In honor of Isengorn (my name for Isengard + Fangorn), you can play a tree-loving wizard mentored by Yavanna
- A character in a clever Entish disguise that will fool me, the GM (don’t worry - I am easily fooled)
Disclaimer: This game is not meant to be taken very seriously. Be as creative or silly as you want.

If you have any feedback, please let me know because this is a new game and I am a new GM and this is an experimENT for me.

Rules:
Sign up by describing 1) your Ent/wizard/other being and 2) your herd of trees (or cacti or whatever kind of plants you want to tend for the duration of the game). Once a few people have signed up, I’ll get the game rolling. Feel free to join in late - sign ups will close after the second round of dice are rolled.
“Spectators” may play animals in your herd of trees (or cacti or whatever) causing mischief or trying to help or doing nothing at all.

There will be bonus dice rolls that will benefit you. If you roll 20, you automatically get a bonus roll scenario. I reserve the right to give bonus rolls if and when I feel like it.

No need to white out OOC but mark it clearly.
NO posting in bright colors.
Label the top of your post with whatever being you’ve chosen to play AND the number of trees you have. (You start with 100 trees.)
@ me with questions/comments. If I do my math wrong, let me know.

Addendum on specifics of dice rolls for those who like nitty-gritty:
I am rolling 2 20-sided dice.
Roll 1 - assigns a previously determined scenario. Odd #s scenarios take away trees, even ones add trees
Roll 2 - gives the number of trees added or deducted from your herd
For example, Aerlinn and Androthelm both rolled a 13 on roll 1 in Round One which resulted in a fire.

If you roll a 20 on roll 1, you receive a bonus. The bonus dice has 4 scenarios and for simplicity I am using the value on roll 2 for the # of trees added.
Last edited by Lailyn on Thu Aug 27, 2020 7:57 pm, edited 3 times in total.

Newborn of Imladris
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Image Lya, an Entwife [weeping cherry]

She has a 'herd' of fruit and nut trees: 20 apple trees, 20 pear trees, 20 cherry trees, 10 damson trees, 10 quince trees, 10 fig trees, 10 hazelnut trees

She doesn't want to lose any of them, thank you.
The Wood-elves lingered in the twilight of our Sun and Moon, but loved best the stars.

Afird Splitax
Afird Splitax
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Image Rowantine, An Entwife (Rowan)
Rowantine has a herd of Rowan trees. She also has two lively little helpers that keep other birds and insects from eating all the bright orange berries. They are trumpeter finches by the name of, Oyo and Goa. They are known for their buzzing nasal trill, which alerts Rowantine to any other dangers. Like someone with an axe.
Last edited by Afird Splitax on Sat Sep 05, 2020 11:58 am, edited 1 time in total.

Tilion
Tilion
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Old Man Saguaro, an Ent of Rhûn. 100 "trees"

Old Man Saguaro is.... and old man saguaro, a tall, towering cactus with several long, curving arms, and the pockmarks of many desert-bird nests in his skin. Some are long abandoned, and some still occupied. His herd comprises many smaller, unruly cacti- young saguaro attempting to be serious, prickly pear with the zoomies, and ponderous barrel cacti always getting underfoot. When he speaks, Old Man Saguaro does so not with the hoom, hoom of his forest dwelling cousins, but with the yowling, screeching, cackling sounds of a laughing coyote.
Evil is a lifestyle | she/her

Black Númenórean
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Thornspawn, a Mesquite Ent of Far Harad and his herd of honey locust

Thornspawn had grown up knowing a very hard, very dry life. He was a difficult Ent to get close to, whether it was his standoffish, broody behavior or the actual thorns that grow out of his skin is anyone’s guess. He’s not a particularly tall Ent, being in what an Ent might call his early teens. If he could dress in black, studded leather and wear black eyeliner he would, since he can’t he settles for housing an entire murder of crows in his thorny, uninviting branches. His herd, naturally is as prickly and uninviting as he is. Honey locust had thorns that any mesquite tree would envy.
Ora pro nobis, Lucifer | Sorry I don't treat you like you're perfect like all your little loyal subjects do

Ilmarë
Ilmarë
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Pinecrown of the Misty Mountains
100 coniferous trees (Douglas Firs, Bristlecone Pines, and Blue Spruces)


A tall ent named Pinecrown has wandered slowly up and down the Misty Mountains, checking in with huorns and trees of the coniferous variety, for ages. Her favorite time of year is winter, when the mountains are blanketed from head to foot in snow and little piles of white fluff settle on the bristly branches of her herd. She is gentle and good-humored, but (relatively) quick to anger if she witnesses or hears of a pine tree being cut down for any, ahem, decorative purposes.
she/her | Esta tierra no es mía, soy de la nocheósfera.

Loremaster of the Herd
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I am loving all of your Ents and trees (or "trees" :wink: ) so far!

Feel free to keep arriving and I will start the dice rolling in a couple of days!

Also have to announce a slight rule modification: I suppose people can't keep signing up through the game because it would be unfair in the event that you all somehow end up with less than 100 trees (unlikely but possible), someone could swoop in with 100 trees at the end and win.

So let it be known that sign ups will close after the second round of dice rolls.

You may now return to your regularly scheduled gardening, friENTs!

Chef
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Needlecrown, Towering Fir of Eryn Vorn

Needlecrown is an Ent turning tree-ish, or perhaps a Huorn with Entish tendencies. They oversee a dense forest of firs, spruce, cedar, ferns, and hemlock. The trunks of all the trees are covered in thick moss on all sides, and finer lichens wind their way around the smallest twigs. The ferns might be called trees by those who have only seen friendlier forests; they tower over the heads of men and elves (that is, if any elves had been bold enough to venture into Eryn Vorn), their green blades unfurling from a central stalk. After too many trees were cut down in years gone by, Needlecrown is full of wrath for anyone who would hurt their charges, or even enter their dense woods. Those who would harm Needlecrown's herd will regret it.

(OOC: I spent far too much time perusing Middle earth maps, and there isn't much known about Eryn Vorn, so for this, I've decided it's a temperate rainforest!)
she/her/actual hobbit in search of a merrier world

Healer of Imladris
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Mekaru, semi-retired wizard, living the island life

Far to the south, beyond Harad and Khand and the once-havens of Umbar are a chain of islands too small and far away to be found on the maps of Gondor. There lives an old man with short-cropped white hair and a crooked, gap-toothed smile who walks among groves of ebony and rosewood, koa and great banyans that have not yet been found. He has had many names, and will perhaps have many more, but for now the locals call him Mekaru, crooked one. He has a penchant for talking to trees.

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Wildlimb the Weeping Willow
Entwife of Dale


Wildlimb, called so for her long flowing branches which have a tendency to get tangled around themselves or with other trees, maintains a mixed herd of hawthorn, elder, and apple trees. Wildlimb herself is quite tall and shapely, an entwife of many, many years, though her herd is a rather young bunch.

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Quagomar and his Nesting Trees
Ent of Fangorn


Quagomar, or Crowhome, is a twisted old ent who shepherds a ragged bunch of miscellaneous Fangorn trees, many of whose original (and species-aligned) Ents have fallen to slumber or been lost in the recent troubles. What brings his herd together? The birds. There are thousands of birds (corvids of all varieties) who nest in this little grove of mixed beech, oak, and pine. They are Quagomar's and Quagomar is theirs.
In the deeps of Time, amidst the Innumerable Stars

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ROUND ONE
New players may still join the game until the second round of rolls!
EDIT to add: the next roll will be in approx. 1 week so there is NO rush for you. This is Fangorn after all...


I love all of your Ents (and wizard) and forests and herds! If I had it my way, you and your forests would all prosper and flourish. Unfortunately, the gods of the dice may not agree with me...

@Lirimaer / Lya - Lya is in luck and hasn’t lost any trees yet! She must be a very friendly Entwife because another Entwife wanders by your lovely fruit and nut tree-herd. She finds it so beautiful that she gifts you 3 more trees! You have 103 trees. (+3)

@drifa / Rowantine - You decide to do a little pruning of some nearby trees (without inflicting pain of course) and your bird friends help. This gives your rowans more light and room to grow. 6 new trees spring up in your herd. Well done! You have 106 trees. (+6)

@Moriel / Old Man Saguaro - Old Man Saguaro must not be too prickly because an Entwife with hair likened to palm fronds pauses while passing to admire your garden. She kneels to tickle the serious young saguaro into laughter without pricking herself. In the process, she drops 3 of her own succulents but decides to leave them in your care. You have 103 cacti. (+3)

@Frostbite / Thornspawn - Unfortunately Thornspawn’s life is about to get a little harder. A large windstorm brews in the deserts of Far Harad and it kicks up a swirl of dust and debris. The storm hits you and your herd and 13 of your trees are damaged and die. And probably a few of your crow-friends, too. Yikes. You have 87 trees. (-13)

@Tarawen / Pinecrown - You are very lucky indeed (you rolled a 20 and receive a bonus). Nothing goes amiss for you and your coniferous herd yet and without much effort at all, 14 new conifers sprout up.
Treebeard must have heard what a good Entwife you are and he sends you some of his Ent-draught. It must be special because it helps you double the number of new trees that grow. You have 128 trees. (+14 x2 = +28)

@Menolly / Needlecrown - Here is another lucky Ent (you also rolled a 20, receive a bonus)! Despite your sleepier ways, you are doing a good job with your herd and 4 new trees sprout up.
Living near the sea may be an advantage as someone on the other side has noticed your dedication - you receive the Blessing of Yavanna and 4 trees will be automatically protected on your next roll no matter what happens. You have 104 trees. (+4, 4 safe next round)

@Aerlinn / Mekaru - Oh dear. Despite being a servant of Yavanna, it seems her attention must have been elsewhere (perhaps with Pinecrown) because a fire starts on your island and 4 trees are lost to the flames forever. You have 96 trees. (-4)

@Taethowen / Wildlimb - A bear ambles through your wood and pauses to eat one of your tasty apples. This doesn’t harm your tree and while there, he leaves a rather generous deposit that fertilizes an additional 11 new sprouts to grow. You have 111 trees. (+11)

@Androtelm / Quagomar - Your efforts at herding these forlorn trees is admirable but it would have been nice if your birds warned you a little sooner. A fire approaches from afar and before you put it out, 16 of your trees are charred and die. You have 84 trees. (-16)

If anyone is interested in the specifics of the rolls, I edited it into the opening post.
Last edited by Lailyn on Thu Aug 27, 2020 11:21 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Image Lya, 103 fruit and nut trees

The fruit and nut trees were a pleasure to take care of, for the most part. Occasionally, they were susceptible to blight and they definitely needed regular pruning and care, but their harvest was a gift to the world and she rejoiced in her part in it.

It was therefore a gift and a delight to discover three new trees within her borders; she tended them lovingly, ensuring their roots had the water they needed and giving them such energy as was necessary to spread and drink and flourish, singing to them in her lilting voice of sunshine and rain and cool wind until they hummed along like the rest of her herd, a beautiful echo of the great song.

Everything was good, and Lya exalted in her task, her own waterfall of hair producing soft pink cherry blossoms that bloomed abundantly like a cloud around her face.

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Wildlimb the Weeping Willow
Entwife of Dale
111 trees (hawthorn, elder, apple)


Wildlimb loved the creatures that would come rambling through her forest-herd from time to time, and she watched fondly as the young black bear made his way through one autumn on his way to find a spot for hibernation. He found one of the last apples still clinging to its branch after the first frost, and she watched as he carefully plucked it--making sure not to mar the tree's trunk with his claws--and munched away.

As he meandered through the woods, Wildlimb followed behind him, carefully gathering up his droppings to compost over the winter.

The next spring, she used it to coax her new seedlings to life. Nine of them were split equally between the hawthorn, elder, and apple. But two... two would be new weeping willows.

With a contented sigh, she settled to wait and watch over them, the breeze softly rustling through her long, flowing branches, the newest spring leaves just peaking out.

Tilion
Tilion
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Old Man Saguaro, an ent of Rhûn. 103 cacti

Old Man Saguaro was quite distracted by the beguiling Entwife and her fronds; such creatures were a rarity in his desert home. So distracted was he watching her play with one of his smaller saguaro charges that he nearly failed to notice the group of prickly pear making a break for it. He went stumping and calling after them. Fortunately they were cheeky but obedient and returned. But the Entwife had straightened and was moving away now- three tiny succulents having fallen from her! Old Man Saguaro raced (in such a manner as he could race) over to them, the yowling cackle that was his voice attempting to bring the Entwife back. But she did not return, and slowly he gathered up the succulents carefully in his long, prickly arms. Plump little aloes bursting with gel-like goodnesses, they burbled happily at him, and he sighed. With great care, he deposited the newest additions to his herd in the crook of one of his arms, next to a large, bright flower. They would enjoy it there.
Evil is a lifestyle | she/her

Ent Ancient
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Quagomar, dampening flames. 84 nesting-trees.

The flames spread quickly through the dry old branches, through the brush, through the twigs and leaves and bits of fur which made up the corvids' nests. The flames spread through the saplings and through the elders, and the flames gobbled them up. Almost twenty percent of the trees, gone. Just like that. Trees that Quagomar had known, some since their youth and some since he inherited them from other ents. And he had failed them.
He quenched the fires quickly. He tried not to think about it. He guided the saplings which survived in which ways to grow, and he sang a song for the hale old trees, to encourage them to fruit faster and grow new saplings. He had a word with the birds, many of whom had lost nests in the blaze. Homes would be found, and, if homes could not be found, homes could be made. It only worked when they worked together.
In the deeps of Time, amidst the Innumerable Stars

Chef
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Needlecrown, 104 trees (+4 safe next round)

A distant breeze blew across the sea, carrying with it the scent of all things green and fresh and growing. Needlecrown raised their branches, stretching up to catch the rejuvenating breath of wind coming from hallowed shores. The hemlocks and spruces creaked, moving almost imperceptibly to take in the blessing of Yavanna. As Needlecrown watched over the green and mossy herd, four new sword ferns erupted from the damp earth and sprang up, unfolding their fronds until they stood as tall as an elf, shaking out fine leaflets and sending a spray of water droplets in all directions.
she/her/actual hobbit in search of a merrier world

Ilmarë
Ilmarë
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Pinecrown, 128 Trees

Pinecrown wandered through a grove midway up a looming peak. Summer was hard for her. Her trees, hardy though they were, became brittle with the heat, many needles and branches browning in the sun. She paused at each tree and spoke to them in turn, calling upon summer rains to nourish them so they might flourish through the fall and into the winter.

"Hrmmm, hoooooom," she said as she rounded a corner and saw a whole new grove of twenty-eight trees where once a fire had torn through this part of the mountains. "My, my, little ones," she said, bending to examine the young pines with shining eyes. She reached out a bristly arm and noted that their needles were full and lustrous. "Don't you look beautiful!"
she/her | Esta tierra no es mía, soy de la nocheósfera.

New Soul
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Kulunin The Tangerine
100 Grape Trees!


Never sure how he quite manages it, Kulunin somehow convinced the elder Wizards to let him out for the day, and decided to go out and gather around him his favorite fruit trees, Grapes! Kulunin knows he must have been touched by the hand of Yavanna, because the grape trees listen to him and follow him as he continues deeper into Fangorn forest. He approaches near an entwife who has collected a variety of fruit trees herself (@Lirimaer /Lya). Kulunin eyed her suspiciously, and turned to his grape trees. "Now, hear this. I don't want you intermingling with those other fruit trees over there, hear me? I know how you like to wrap your vines all over the place, but that Ent looks like she wants you for her collection..."

Afird Splitax
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Image
Rowantine 106

Shading her eyes from the sun, Rowantine looked up above her herd where Oyo and Goa were diving wildly at a lone blackbird that had accidently flown in near the trees. The blackbird was obviously a newcomer to the grove, unaware of Oyo and Goa's antics.
'Hrum, Hoom,' she murmured softly to herself as she gazed at the herd. They were all wearing their orange caps as Summer waned and Autumn was closing in. It was a spectacular site if one were to gaze west of Fangorn Forest to the slopes.
Looking down at the new saplings that had pushed their heads from the earth in the spring, she smiled. The pruning had allowed more light, and the results were always rewarding. Six tenth great grandrowans, clean-limbed, swaying in the breeze.
Last edited by Afird Splitax on Sat Sep 05, 2020 11:58 am, edited 2 times in total.

Healer of Imladris
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96 trees standing
and having second thoughts about my name
:lol:

He put the flames out shortly before dawn with a measure of less-than-subtle wizardry of the sort he usually avoided. But it was too early for this nonsense and he was sure another thousand ages of the world could not possibly convince him otherwise. He patted the scorched bark of a young tree at the edge of the burn area and sighed ruefully. "Well, you had a lucky morning at least. What now?"

The rustling of leaves above him seemed a bit reproachful.

"Oh, hush now. I can be sad without being dramatic about it. Frankly, what I am is hungry. Your breakfast might pop over the horizon in a few minutes but mine most certainly won't. And don't be jealous! It's not my fault you don't produce edible fruit."


(OOC: @corlisswyn! Woah, that's a familiar name. Good to see ya!)

Black Númenórean
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Thornspawn (87 Golden Locust Trees)

Well of course this would happen! As soon as the sun was up, the world decided it was time to hate on Thornspawn. Hey everyone, come pick at Thornspawn today! The stupid wind had to go become a stupid storm and now 13 of his trees were dead, just like his blackened soul. He envied the dead trees, at least they were free from the tortuous existence that was this life. Some of his crows were dead too! This was the worst day of Thornspawn's life.
Ora pro nobis, Lucifer | Sorry I don't treat you like you're perfect like all your little loyal subjects do

Loremaster of Gondor
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Mosshollow

Mosshollow, a very respectable old Ash tree himself, thank you very much, had always hated these maple trees. Unruly, messy, far too unkempt for his liking! A good tree should know when to move and when to stay put, and despite their maturity these trees still roamed as freely as an enting. If their sap wasn't so useful, he would have left to tend a different herd sometime during the second age. As it was, he needed to do his duties as their treeherd. Never let it be said that he was the worst herder in Fangorn. He had pride, you know.

Loremaster of the Herd
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New trees yay! Welcome!

Round two rolls tomorrow evening so come join in the forest advENTures! The more the merrier.

Loremaster of the Herd
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Signups are now closed!! Unless you ask me very very nicely...I may be convinced that rules are made to be broken but you'll probably start with fewer than 100 trees as a late penalty.

ROUND TWO
PLEASE double check my math because I struggled with it today and correct me if I'm wrong. Thank you.

@Lirimaer / Lya - Your singing is to be commended and your orchard is flourishing...but all those fruit trees sure are thirsty and there hasn’t been a drop of rain in weeks! The drought hits them very hard and 20 of them die, reducing your herd to 83. (-20)

@drifa / Rowantine - Autumn colors look beautiful on your herd! Unfortunately, orcs don’t care much for beauty and they invade your forest. They are obviously up to no good and though you try to stop them, being an Ent, you are unhasty and 11 of your trees fall to their weapons. Your herd has 95 trees. (-11)

@Moriel / Old Man Saguaro - Is it spring because love is in the air as you watch the Entwife disappear? It’s not just you, either; a woodpecker with bright gold feathers and a bold red cap settles into your herd and begins pecking at your cacti to attract a mate. He must be a very young and inexperienced bird to peck at such a plant, but he still manages to destroy 8 of them beyond recovery. Your herd has 95 cacti. (-8)

@Murder Muffin / Thornspawn - All hope is not lost, Thornspawn! The dust storm clears and the weather that follows is bright and sunny (unlike your brooding self) and it makes your trees very happy. Things are looking up for you as unlucky (or lucky) 13 new trees sprout up in your corner of Harad. You have 100 trees again! (+13)

@Zôrzimril / Pinecrown - The summer heat may be having an effect on you...you begin to feel quite tired and tree-ish and fall asleep for a while. Much to your dismay, 5 trees have died without your tender, loving care while you dozed. Maybe ask a bird for an alarm call next time? Still, you were lucky before and your herd has 123 trees.

@Menolly / Needlecrown - Needlecrown, you are a model Ent. Not only have you caught Yavanna’s eye but also that of an Entwife. She heard tell of your temperate rainforest and wanted to see it for herself. While she visits, she gifts you 9 new seeds to plant and 4 more ferns flourish under your care. You now have 117 trees. (+9, +4)
(Since you didn’t roll a negative scenario, I decided to bonus you 4 trees anyway because I can. Will do this for others, too, if it comes up again.)

@Aerlinn / semi-retired wizard - Some people have all the luck, but today it is not you. Just after you finish putting out the first fire, a few stray sparks burst into flame again and 6 more trees perish. Are you perhaps on a very dry, desert island? Things are not looking so good for you. You have 90 trees. (-6)
(If you roll fire a third time, I just don’t know what will be left of your little island…! :googly: )

@Taethowen / Wildlimb - Your forest in Dale is very calm and peaceful and that fertilizer was a help. You have done just enough but not too much to care for your herd. A gentle and nourishing rain falls upon your grove, helping bring new life. 18 new trees grow and you have 129 trees. (+18)

@Androtelm / Quagomar - You’ve done well putting out the fire and your herd is on its way to recovering. It seems timing is on your side, Quagomar. A very lucky wind springs up and with it some of the very same earth from Lothlorien Galadriel gifted to Sam settles into the ground. 8 more trees flourish to epic heights with this helping hand. You have 92 trees. (+8)

@corlisswyn / Kulunin - Lya the Entwife and her orchard may be the least of your worries, wizard! While you weren’t paying attention to the weather, a cold front moves across your grape trees and brings freezing conditions, ice and blowing snow. 9 of your trees do not survive, leaving you with 91 trees. (-9)

@Giliathriel / Mosshollow - Compared to the others, Mosshollow, you are no worse an Ent than them (at least for now). Your Maple trees may be somewhat young and hasty, but as a tidewater of flood comes raging through your trees, 17 don’t move quite away fast enough which reduces your herd to 83. (-17)
Last edited by Lailyn on Fri Sep 04, 2020 12:59 am, edited 1 time in total.

Loremaster of the Herd
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(re-tag for @Androthelm because sometimes I can't spell sorry)

New Soul
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Kulunin the Tangerine
91 Grape Trees


"Really?!?" Kulunin shouted at his herd, pointing to the nine dead grape trees. "You should know better than to not huddle up together. You Grape trees are very susceptible to the cold! Why aren't any of you wearing scarves and trunk warmers? I guess I'm just going to have to try to teach you all how to knit some for yourselves. Okay, everyone, so you'll need two free vines each for the knitting needles..." Kulunin spun around and started muttering to himself, wondering just where he might find 91 balls of yarn out here in the middle of the forest... If only there were some cotton bushes around.

Black Númenórean
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Thornspawn (back to 100 Golden Locusts)

Fortune, oh you heartless, fickle beauty! Just when he was sure all hope was lost, Thornspawn saw he trees were still alive! For now, this fleeting moment life was tolerable. This called for one of Thornspawn’s infamously moody poems. The trouble of course was, the crows were being too loud for him to access his muse. Ugh! Will these tortures never cease! Thornspawn hoomed and hummed but the words just weren’t coming to him. Drat these distractions. He would shoo the birds away but they were part of his aesthetic. How would anyone know how grim and broody he was without his crows? Maybe he should switch to ravens?
Ora pro nobis, Lucifer | Sorry I don't treat you like you're perfect like all your little loyal subjects do

Afird Splitax
Afird Splitax
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Image
Rowantine - 95 Rowan

Rowantine was out of breath, though it was not from running. It was from swinging her arms and smashing the heads of a gang of hooligan Orcs. They had come down from Isengard to wreck havoc. And so they did. Tears streamed down the old Ent-wife's face as she gained her breath and control of her anger. The cries that only she could hear, from the felled, was fading. All was silent except for the wind rustling the leaves. Autumn's colors seem less vibrant as Rowantime (with Oyo and Goa perched on her shoulders, much subdued) prepared to lay to rest her love ones.
Last edited by Afird Splitax on Sat Sep 05, 2020 11:59 am, edited 2 times in total.

Newborn of Imladris
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Image Lya, 83 fruit and nut trees

Ai! It was a sad time.

Lya had not been able to prevent the loss of twenty whole trees to the drought which had reduced so many of her herd to sad boughs filled with dry curling leaves, falling slowly, and no amount of water brought to the area had been enough to satisfy their thirst, despite all the herd fighting the burden together for most of the time, with roots seeking out and finding compatriots, sharing the wealth.

It seemed unhappily like the poor dead trees - six each pear and apple, five quince and three hazelnut - had sacrificed themselves for the herd, and though she was grateful, Lya wept silently as she mourned her friends, the petal blossoms crowning her hair falling sadly to the floor of her well-tended garden around the drought-killed trees, so that they stood, tall, bare sentinels on a pink carpet.

She would have to remove them, she knew, to make way for new growth - but not yet, she whispered to the melancholy wind. Not yet.

Chef
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Needlecrown, 117 trees (thanks for those extra four, @Lailorn!)

Well, this was something odd. Needlecrown watched as a new tree, a rather active one at that, made their way through the dense herd of hemlock and spruce. On a closer look, it wasn't a tree at all, but an Ent! Or perhaps an Entwife? Needlecrown had never been particularly good at telling the difference. Nonetheless, they held still as the Entwife (yes, it had to be an Entwife, Needlecrown was almost certain) reached out and placed nine new seeds in the loamy ground between the two of them. They couldn't quite find their voice (perhaps a side effect of the treeishness), but Needlecrown stretched their branches forward, brushing the Entwife's leaves and shedding fir needles everywhere as a sign of thanks.

Bending down almost double, so much that they felt their trunk tremble and threaten to crack, Needlecrown scraped the fine dark soil around the seeds, patting it down carefully and breathing a gentle breath upon each seedling. They could feel the seeds opening already, sending a shoot up through the thick soil to find the Sun hidden behind thick gray clouds. Needlecrown looked back up at the Entwife, still unable to find words. Instead, they took a long trailing length of moss and tucked it around the Entwife's face, letting it cover her like a living shawl. The Entwife smiled, or at least Needlecrown thought she smiled, and as she cast her branches wide, four new ferns leapt out of the soil, unfolding before their eyes.
she/her/actual hobbit in search of a merrier world

Ilmarë
Ilmarë
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Pinecrown, 123 trees

Summer insects hummed noisily from her beloved trees as a warm breeze rustled their pine needles. Pinecrown swayed gently in the wind, feeling it pass over her skin with pleasure - the heat could truly be stifling to this old entwife. "Hmmmmm, hummmmmm," she sang happily. She closed her eyes - just for a second, to truly soak in the moment.

When she opened her eyes, she saw that the sun had fallen lower in the sky and the grove around her had grown shadier. She gently shook the sleepiness from her head and stretched her bristly arms high before going to check on her little grove of trees once more before nightfall.

To her dismay, she saw that five trees had browned and wilted in the afternoon's heat. Why had she fallen asleep? She could have saved them! She stood over each one, calling their names with tears rolling down her face.

Still, she had 123 trees left to tend. She vowed she would do a better job with them than the five she now mourned.
she/her | Esta tierra no es mía, soy de la nocheósfera.

Loremaster of the Herd
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Please note - the dice will roll again on Thursday (or possibly even Friday) this week. May the odds be ever in your favor...

Ent Ancient
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Quagomar, 92 Nesting Trees

A breath out. A Moment's rest. A pause, and a shifting of soil -- of roots, of wings in branches. Things were better, now. This was far better. So much better, in fact, that it took much concentration for Quagomar to even realize that he had begun to drift very slowly to...
Wakefulness. He was awake. Ent-eyes blinked. That had been a close one. He had almost fallen asleep, and then where would his poor herd of vagrants be? Instead of slumbering, the ent busied himself whispering with the crows in his branches, taking in their how-dyou-dos and hearing the news. The crows seldom talked about much besides the happenings of wind and sky, and Quagomar enjoyed that. There was nothing... hasty about wind and sky.

(LATE edit: whoops, forgot my tree-count)
Last edited by Androthelm on Wed Sep 09, 2020 12:13 am, edited 2 times in total.
In the deeps of Time, amidst the Innumerable Stars

Loremaster of Gondor
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Mosshollow, 83 Maple Trees

Mosshollow shook his head in disappointment. Of all the times for his trees to NOT want to move around, they picked a flood? Then again, these lesser trees weren't known for being bright. After all, they needed a tree herd to even know where to spread their leaves. Mosshollow set about helping his trees out of the mud, lest they become stuck for good. He looked down, noticing some silver creeping up his bark. These darn trees leeching his color. Hopefully they'd fare better in the next tragedy to play out in the Saga of Mosshollow.

Thain of The Mark
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Wildlimb the Weeping Willow
Entwife of Dale
129 trees (hawthorn, elder, apple)


Spring rains, as the snow melted, was often messy and caused flooding, but what Wildlimb loved best was the gentle rains of early summer. As the cool drops fell from the sky, she lifted her face up and let the water caress her smooth bark and drip from the leaves on her long, loose limbs.

When the rains had passed, and she wandered through her herd once more, Wildlimb laughed with delight to find the young, tender shoots--not quite twenty of them. They would have all summer to establish their roots before winter, and she checked them often, whispering and singing songs of life.

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ROUND THREE
It is still anyone’s game at this point! Some of you are neck and neck. Or trunk and trunk. Or something.

Since no one was lucky enough to roll bonuses, I chose a few myself.

Round four will roll in again one week (Friday the 18th) and will likely be the last unless we need a tiebreaker. If you missed round three, don’t worry (@Aerlinn, @Moriel ). You can post again and ask for a roll to catch up or wait it out for the round four roll (might be safer). Make it clear in your post if you want to catch up.

@Lirimaer / Lya - You mourn your losses in a beautiful tribute and just when you thought things couldn’t get any worse, they do. You are still wiping your tears away when you sense someone shuffling at the edge of your herd. It is a dwarf bearing an axe! One of your trees is felled for fuel or a cooking fire. (-1) 82 trees

@drifa / Rowantine - You fought the orcs with much bravery and did well to protect your herd. Another Entwife comes to see what all the noise was about and offers her deepest condolences for your loss. Humans share food when mourning but Entwives share plants and this one is very generous. She gifts you 19 saplings. (+19) 114 trees

@Mama's Murder Muffin / Thornspawn - It almost seems like you enjoy suffering. But surely not today! This must cheer you up - its warm and sunny and four birds (your own crows if you like) fly by and drop seeds among your herd. Only one sprouts into a plant but still, that’s better than nothing, right? (+1)

Bonus roll: because Thornspawn’s determination to be grumpy no matter what made me laugh.
The Touch of Telperion somehow reaches you (must be a time loop somewhere where the tree still lives) and one more tree miraculously sprouts!
You also receive the option to roll a second dice next round, but keep in mind the odds of a positive and negative outcome are the same. Let me know in your next post if you choose to take the risk of a second roll. (+1) 102 trees

@Tarawen / Pinecrown - You paid a heavy price for your nap. Things are not improving yet. You better wipe your tears because a horde of orcs comes crashing in. What hateful destroyers and usurpers! You try to stomp on them but 13 trees are ruthlessly destroyed. (-13) 110 trees

@Menolly / Needlecrown - The Entwife did indeed smile at you. Nothing makes her heart happier than to see new green growth so it’s a good thing she’s long gone when a woodpecker arrives in your forest. Hoping to find a mate and build a cavity for their offspring, the woodpecker is very insistent and damages 12 trees beyond repair despite your efforts to distract the bird or get it to settle on a single tree. (-12) 105 trees

@Taethowen / Wildlimb - You’ve had a good run, Wildlimb, but it was never going to last. A herd of wild orcs and goblins come down from the mountains and raid your forest. The worst part is they don’t even eat or appreciate the fruit or even use the wood for anything. They are hateful creatures, aren’t they? 19 trees are lost to the orcs. (-19) 110 trees

@Androthelm / Quagomar - Your crows begin to caw very loudly, alerting you to something else amiss. Perhaps you should talk to Thornspawn so he knows how bad things can really get. A bunch of dwarves come into your herd and start hacking trees for firewood. They’re hungry and there are lots of mouths to feed. A whopping 20 are felled before you shoo them along. It might be time to consider a new vocation. (-20) 72 trees

@corlisswyn / Kulunin - In a bizarre turn of events, the weather warms dramatically and a bunch of happy bees appear, buzzing about your trees! They do such a great job pollinating and five more trees begin to grow. (+5) 96 trees

Bonus roll: because I absolutely love the idea of trees in scarves and sweaters!
The Light of Laurelin shines on you (yep, also definitely possible because I said so) and 5 more trees are ready bloom to life...but the choice is yours. You may take 5 additional trees for yourself (I will add them next round) or you can deduct 5 from another player. Indicate your choice in your next post (and bold the name of the player should you choose to deduct).

@Giliathriel / Mosshollow - It seems some kind of sleepy stillness has fallen over your normally restless trees and it is not a good thing. A pair of dwarves amble along and start chopping down your trees to build a nice toasty campfire for the night. Before you manage to squash them (or scare them away), five trees are felled. (-5) 78 trees

Newborn of Imladris
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Image Lya, 82 fruit and nut trees

The time had come to clear the glade of the trees that had succumbed to drought. Lya carefully and reverently brought their wood to the edge of her guardianship in many many trips, creating piles of logs which might be a home for wildlife in the winter months, giving back to the forest in different ways. Her fingers, delving into the undergrowth beneath them, encouraged the mycellium and mosses to creep along the paths she'd made, hastening the natural reclaiming by the land. As Autumn brought fruit to bear, Lya brought fallen offerings to the little woodpiles, like harvest altars. It was a fitting tribute, she thought, as she walked her fragrant orchard woodland, and would sustain many of the kelvar that might otherwise not survive the winter months.

It was as she was patrolling her area that she heard the unmistakeable sounds of an axe; though she had never heard one before, she would know it ever after. She meandered toward the harsh rhythmic sound, feeling the dulled pain and panic in the trees about her, blind but worried. She hurried on, with larger strides, but she was too late. Somewhere in her orchard, a tree was felled and she felt the wrench as life left her forest.

Grief made her swift, until she came to the stump of a cherry tree on the outskirts of her realm. She gazed in horror at the sight, a tree that had not even reached its prime, barely twelve years in the ground and only just beginning to understand her gentle humour. She could have wept. She would weep later. Her green eyes followed the tracks on the ground, long strides eating up the distance until she found the culprit, a short hairy creature bound in iron bands. She watched it as it expertly chopped the cherry wood into manageable chunks, sometimes changing its tool, until what remained of her young friend was a pile of logs and sticks, all piled up on a cart. She heard the word firewood and wondered why the short hairy creature had not taken dry wood from the logpiles for its fire. Why take a green tree? She did not understand.

She plunged her hands deep into the soile on the outskirts of her realm and began the process of inviting brambles to guard her borders. As she raised up the prickly bushes a third time, she began to feel a sense of control and safety, though indeed, the bramble thicket was neither tall nor wide enough yet. She spent more energy in raising the border until it was quite high, taller by far than the little metal-covered hairy man, and impassable. It would take a concerted effort to reach her realm now, and perhaps that might put off the thieves and robbers.

Thain of The Mark
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Wildlimb the Weeping Willow
Entwife of Dale
110 trees (hawthorn, elder, apple)


The orcs and goblins had descended from the mountains so suddenly that by the time Wildlimb realized they were among her herd, it was too late. Nineteen trees. Gone. Just like that.

Her long, leafy limbs shuddered as she mourned, picking through the smashed and scattered trees. They had not even taken anything. Not a piece of fruit, nor a stick of wood... the orcs and goblins simply destroyed her beloved trees and the senseless violence was something Wildlimb simply could not understand.

With tenderness, she gathered the smashed limbs and marred trunks, settling them in pile in a small clearing. At least here, they would offer shelter for the wildlife until they eventually broke down and returned to the earth. She retrieved what fallen fruit she could, setting aside what viable seed she found, and placing the rest near the pile of limbs. The wildlife could also eat the fruit.

Then, Wildlimb found herself humming a melancholy tune as she planted what seeds she'd saved. Even the circle of life touched trees, but it wasn't supposed to happen so soon in their lives. Hopefully, some of these seeds would take, and while it wouldn't be the same trees from before, at least some portion of them would live on.

Ilmarë
Ilmarë
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Pinecrown, 110 trees

A rustling, then a stomping, then a snarling, then a crashing sound met Pinecrown’s ears. Before she could react in defense of her herd, a troop of orcs came marching through the trees. They swung their axes with focused energy, not doing their foul work with joy but rather as if compelled to harvest the wood by some external force. Whatever the reason, each blow to her precious pines sent a shudder of fear and hatred down the entwife’s back. She hoomed and boomed and stomped, feeling herself growing angry. It was not long before she strode to the nearest orcs and, lifting a great leg, brought it smashing down on one of them. The others, seeing the crumpled remains of their fellow, scattered with shrill cries. But hooom hom! Thirteen of her beautiful trees were left in ruins, either cut down or mortally wounded. Green lights flickered in Pinecrown’s eyes. She was angry now!
she/her | Esta tierra no es mía, soy de la nocheósfera.

Chef
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Needlecrown, 105 trees

Tap. Tap tap. Tap tap tap tap. What was that infernal noise? Needlecrown turned about, craning their crown to locate the source of the disturbing racket. A flash of black and white and red flew from a hemlock that was already drooping and landed on a nearby spruce. Tap tap tap tap TAP TAP TAP.

No. This would not do at all. Moving faster than they would have thought possible, Needlecrown waved their branches about, trying desperately to frighten this intruder away. Instead the bold bird flew from the dying spruce to land on a towering cedar, then resumed its endless drumming on the bark. Needlecrown felt the proud cedar cry out in pain and moved again, whipping their crown down to strike at the woodpecker and send it flying far away. The bird spread its wings briefly, but only moved around the trunk of the cedar and resumed its drumming, all but assuring the death of the enormous tree. A wordless cry of rage erupted from Needlecrown as the bird flew to a nearby fir and landed on a low branch to continue its destruction. The birds and the trees might exist in harmony much of the time, but this cruel creature could not be allowed to continue.
she/her/actual hobbit in search of a merrier world

Healer of Imladris
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90 trees standing
Sort of on fire, semi-retired wizard


He dozed off again shortly after breakfast--one of the key advantages of retirement--and blissfully slept through a gaggle of very noisy birds, a tiny gecko crawling in circles on his stomach, and the slowly strengthening smell of smoke. He did not sleep through the spark that flew into his hair and proceeded to burn away a perfect circle on the top of his head.

"Yaaaaah! Awhaaa!" the wizard cried and jumped to his feet. The remains of his breakfast, a shallow bowl of scrambled duck eggs and fruit, fell to the sand along with the gecko, who had taken a definite interest in the leftovers.

Still slapping at his scalp with one hand the wizard tramped into the smoking trees and stared at the widening swath of destruction in dismay. This was ridiculous! He had fought his way through corsairs and stormy seas to relax, not to become a one-man fire brigade! "Enough. of. this. I. was. sleeping!" he ground out between clenched teeth, punctuating each word with a stab at the sandy ground with this staff. Then with a sharp gesture he thrust the staff sideways before him and the dirt rose up in a small wave to smother the remaining flames.


Make-up roll for Round Three, please!

Loremaster of the Herd
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Mid-round catchup roll for @Aerlinn/Mekaru/the semi-retired wizard!
Nice trick you did there! Fortunately, the flames do NOT return again and a moist seabreeze picks up and clears away the last of the smoke to reveal a bright blue sky. At least all the fire churned up some nutrients in the soil and with that and the sunshine, your herd begins to regenerate! Nineteen new sprouts emerge from the ashes. Oh, but it looks like the gecko finished your breakfast... (+19) 109 trees

--
also @Zôrzimril sorry I got your mention-name wrong last round. Can you tell I had a template with all the names at the start then of course forgot to update it?

Ent Ancient
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Quagomar, 72 Trees

Quagomar was not a large ent, or a particularly green and youthful one, but he was strong. Strong and old, he was, strong and old and made of stern stuff. The little-bearded-cutting-folk scattered before him. One swung a hard-biting-hot-steel and his hard skin-armoring-bark-robe-cloak-of-wood turned it aside. The dwarf did not swing again.

For the most part, though, the intruders were smart enough to flee. Quagomar seethed as he pursued them, though in his heart he was weeping. Some tripped over the roots of his dwindling herd and fell--he let them lie. The roots would cover them before they rose. "Flee!" he cried, to those who passed through the thicket and out the other side, and sent his noise-and-rush-of-feathers-crowing-folk to pursue them with sound and fury.

But Quagomar stood, and he wept.
In the deeps of Time, amidst the Innumerable Stars

New Soul
Points: 159 
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Kulunin the Tangerine
96 Grape Trees

Kulunin was tickled pink at the sight of his grape trees all in matching trunk warmers and sweaters. He only had one ball of yarn, but a bit of a magic spark and voila, enough for all the trees. Suddenly bees came to admire their handywork and Kulunin promised once he got back to Orthanc he'd knit little sweaters with wing holes for the bees. To Kulunin's surprise, the bees quickly pollinated seedlings and grew an additional five trees nearly out of thin air! "Hurry, we need five more sweaters! Get those needles moving!"

Kulunin rushed over to the new saplings and started tickling at their chins. "Welcome little ones! Lets see, I think I will name you Chardonnay! And you! You must be Sauvignon! You look like a Cabernet! Welcome Malbec!" Kulunin went to the last of the new trees. "You I will name Bob!"

Bonus - Kulunin is all about helping everyone win, so he will take on 5 additional trees rather than take away from someone else :)

Loremaster of Gondor
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Mosshollow
78 Maple Trees


Mosshollow nearly pulled the moss from his bark in frustration. "When I told you to stop moving so much, I didn't mean to stop moving altogether! You can move when dwarves come at you with axes. I shouldn't even have to tell you this stuff! It's like you want to be firewood!" Mosshollow moved slowly over to the remnants of the felled trees, grieving underneath his anger. These maples were so young, they should have had many long years ahead of them to share their syrup and colors with the world. He set about among the herd, checking the rest of the trees for signs of injuries.

Tilion
Tilion
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Old Man Saguaro, an ent of Rhûn. 95 cacti

“Away! Away!” Old Man Saguaro cried in his yowling voice, stumping among his herd of many small cacti, trying to find the source of their distress as they scuttled about crying. At last, he found it: a flamboyantly dressed woodpecker, which his beak buried in the arm of a young prickly pear. With a swipe of one of his great arms, Old Man Saguaro dispatched the bird in a poof of feathers and a spray of unmentionables. With great care he gathered up the injured prickly pear, murmuring to it as soothingly as he could, and deposited it next to the baby aloe the entwine had left him. But he was dismayed as her surveyed his herd: eight of them had been lost to the spiteful bird. Old Man Saguaro gathered his cacti about him, a more sober tone settling over them now as he shepherded them on, singing coyote songs to comfort the succulents.

Catch up please, I like to live dangerously
Evil is a lifestyle | she/her

Black Númenórean
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Thornspawn, 102 Golden Locusts

Praise the dark miracle maker! By some magical and timey wimey elfy welfy means, he had actually gain two new trees! Thornspawn could not help but be overjoyed by the fortuitous moment. His plans for world domination with his invasive trees could finally begin to commence! Soon he would rule this diseased and broken world from his dark throne of shadows and thrones and his crows would scour the earth looking for nonbelievers to be sacrificed to his dark and cruel majesty! It was time for preparations to be made. Thornspawn whirled his extra-long, extra black gothic cloak (specially made by Orodruin Concept, the Middle-Earth answer to Hot Topic) and began to make his careful plans, plans best made in the shadows.

@Lail you are the best! I'm so glad you like my gothy tree boi as much as I do! :lol:

Gives us that extra roll!

OOC: Many, many thanks to @Zôrzimril for the wonderful name "Orodruin Concept"
Ora pro nobis, Lucifer | Sorry I don't treat you like you're perfect like all your little loyal subjects do

Loremaster of the Herd
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ANNOUNCEMENT: The Final Round Four will roll on Monday Sep 21st instead of tomorrow to allow people to catch-up for the conclusion when we find out just who among you is the best tree-herding Ent or wizard...
---
Mid-round catch-up roll for @Moriel/Old Man Saguaro
Perhaps the woodpecker was fleeing from some threat because it soon becomes clear to you that all is not well in your desert. Is that smoke you smell faintly on the wind? Yes. Because it is so dry, a single flame explodes into an inferno. There is a price to pay for living dangerously...and your herd has paid it. Luckily your cacti are quite fire resistant so only 5 are lost to the licking flames. (-5) 90 cacti
---
@corlisswyn - That is most kind of Kulunin. In that case, you'll start with 101 cozy trees for Round Four.
@Mama's Murder Muffin - Another one living dangerously! Noted - will roll twice for you in Round Four.

Healer of Imladris
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109 trees standing
Befriending the local reptile population


The gecko, who was beginning to doze off inside the bowl he had just so industriously cleaned up, suddenly found himself rising into the air, bed and all. A huge crooked nose and enormous deep-set black eyes loomed into view above him and a gaping maw full of yellow teeth cracked open. The little lizard chirped in alarm and made to dart over the edge of the bowl...

"Good morning, young thief! Did you enjoy breakfast? I'm sorry if the eggs were dry, I was a bit distracted this morning."

Beady eyes turned and stared up at the wizard. What a strange old man! Almost as if he was saying something intelligible, as if the gecko just listened a little harder it would resolve itself into proper speech. One of the surrounding trees seemed to dip its branches down and rustle around them.

"Come up here then," the wizard said, gently transferring the tiny beast to his shoulder. "You can help me with this mess." Together they walked to the center of the burned area and knelt in the ashes. The sun cut through the remaining smoke to beat on the back of his neck. Small green tendrils were already fighting their way upwards through the soil. The old wizard began to hum softly, long, dragging notes that stretched into many years and tens of years from now. The gecko looked on and chirped a meandering counterpoint.

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