Chapter Three

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Re: Chapter Three

Post  Osvald Hale on Tue Mar 31, 2015 12:30 pm

Osvald lingers on the periphery of the conversation, allowing the others to speak with the Wizard to avoid saying anything embarrassing.

"So, it appears we shall remain in Baulders Gate until Mazolath can decipher that... book." He turns to face the elderly wizard. "Would it be wise for you to remain here, or do you have a place--a secret place--where you may do this work without fear of being discovered?"

=====

Some of the mystical magicky stuff is going a little over Osvalds head so he's keeping things practical for now, and looking to the immediate future.
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Re: Chapter Three

Post  Shorjahl on Tue Mar 31, 2015 1:08 pm

Shorjahl nods in agreement with Osvald. "I think we should remain here until the truth of this," he looks obliquely at the book, his eyes still red, "comes to light." He turns to the old mage. "I'll be happy to stay with you here, or any more secure location, and assist with the tome," despite his words, Shorjahl looks utterly drained and pathetic. He summons courage from somewhere that even he doesn't understand, swallowing hard, and maintaining his steely gaze at the wizard.

His eyes lower, "I don't expect any of you to stay with me, if you need to move on. But I would be honored to have your continued help," he smiles feebly.

-------------------

I suggest we screen wipe a week later or whatever until the book is deciphered, or the next interesting / dramatic bit. But if people want to do things in the city, it is totally easy to leave Shorjahl at home with his books and insanity and wizard stuff.
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Re: Chapter Three

Post  Kellar on Tue Mar 31, 2015 3:48 pm

I'll stay until this is resolved. It makes no sense for me to track a dragon and not be able to kill it. I'll need your help with that when the time comes, he said.

I would suggest we seek out someone to enchant the weapons we carry, he said. If we're to fight things not of this world we best be able to kill them. Does anyone know who we can see about this, he asked the group.

Osvald, I would speak with you concerning ways of the ranger when we have time, he concluded.

Actions:
Kellar will assist Shorjahl to resolve the matter of the book. He'll also be looking to enchant weapons.


Last edited by Kellar on Tue Mar 31, 2015 3:49 pm; edited 1 time in total (Reason for editing : English is my first language?)
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Re: Chapter Three

Post  Custer Thickett on Tue Mar 31, 2015 4:32 pm

Custer first lingers in a corner, withdrawn and introspective.  Now we fight demons and dragons?  I know I said I'd follow your calling, me lady, but are ya really sure I'm the right sort for this kind of work?

When Kellar mentions weapons, Custer looks down at K'Tesh's bow on his hip.  He focuses on the runes cut into the wood, and wonders, What black magic is this, Hun'ett?

He then steps forward to join the conversation, "Pardon, Mazolath, My name is Custer of the House Thickett, humble merchants from Esmeltaran in Amn.  You were right to observe that we are on a mission.  This tomb is but a part of it.  Savage tribes that have warred for generations gather in the wild lands under the banner of Cyric.  They attacked my home, and were it not for the sacrifices of the brave, would have burned my lovely city to the ground.  We don't know right what this God is planning, but we know well that he is on the move now, even here in Bauldur's Gate."

Custer turns to the others, "The people can't afford that we sit idly by and let fate have it's way this time.  We know enough to see that these folk are up to no good, and I won't suffer seeing another city burn while I nurse cold Ale, trying to see over your human sized tables.  We need to find the Cyricist in this town.  We need to watch them.  We also need be checking with travelers, wardens, and the city watch to see if they have word of Orcs, Kobolds, Gnolls, and that sort gathering in the mountains and woods this far north."

"I propose that we make a plan for keeping guard here, so that the tome is safe, and send others into town to gather supplies and investigate, yeah?"
 Custer smiles, sticks out his chest and balls his fist in his best Kilik impression, and says, "What say yer?"


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Re: Chapter Three

Post  Kellar on Tue Mar 31, 2015 4:37 pm

That plan sounds reasonable. Perhaps the Harpers will have some intelligence for us as well. We could use the extra resources and cast a large net to gain leads, he said to Custer.

I say, Aye, Little One, he said with resolve. He mussed Cus' s hair with his hand and patted him on the back.
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Re: Chapter Three

Post  Artimus DeLonde on Tue Mar 31, 2015 6:56 pm

Artimus listened intently, one arm crossed as the other rubbed a stubbled chin.

The world seemed to stir again, like it did years ago beneath Latora, where the dark elves toiled to raise a dark god.

Iz it my lot to be blown by zhe windz of fate into dark waterz. he wondered. lamenting the path before him.

He paced to the blown apart window overlooking courtyard of the Red Wizards tower.

Gazing past the bushes and the trees, down the road, deep into the distance till the land curved out of view, inevitably circling back to his himself.

Perhapz zheze are ment for zhem. Artimus mused, fingering the tokens in his pouch.

Zhat iz why I formed zhe Fizt.. izn't it? To make a difference, it'z what Zelune demanded when zhe reztored me. To guide zhe lozt and trapped from darknezz. The Mariner continued in his own mind.

To ztop the evil machinationz.. Artimus halted.. He’d always finished that thought with, "of man."

Almost too afraid think of facing something truly evil, the kind vileness that cannot be hosted in the flesh of men.

I hoped to ztem zhe evilz of men, and zhoze who would dominate zheze realmz. Not zearch after horrorz zhat haunt ztrange, far placez.

We do not alwayz chooze our pazhz. Mine zhould have ended zhat day... I zuppoze I leazt of all can I deny zhiz calling.

He had been having the dreams for weeks now.

Artimus turned facing back into the tower.

I have been having a dark dream.

He said, taking a moment to meet the eyes of each man there . Kellar the bold and blue, Custar the crass-ly sweet halfing, Osvald the grizzled sharper from the mountains, Shorjahl the ever tortured, Dawn the shaggy earth clad and Mazoleth the Red.

He asked for their humanity without words.

I have zeen zhe dark univerze yawning, Where black planetz moved wizhout aim, Where zhey roll in zheir horror iz unzeen, Wizhout knowledge, or luztre, or name. In zhiz dream zhere iz alwayz zhrieking, only poetry or madnezz could do juztice to zhe noizez...

I believe it a vizion of darknezz rizing. For thiz reazon I will join you, and for thiz reazon I zhare you thiz.

I am the leader of The Kraken'z Fizt. A looze alliance of merchantz, zailorz, diplomatz, politicianz and otherz.

We exizt, firzt to counter zhe greed of one man zhat waz ztrangling zhiz part of zhe world. Verdi de Vicci.

And az we were zlowly able to wreztle portz and waterwayz from zhe merchant of deazh we found we were able to do more. We were able to unleveraged men zhat were puzhed into zhe zervice of hiz trade network zhrough extortion, zhrough blackmail.



We found zhat our power grew wizh zhe more people we zerved, zhe more people we helped, turned form dezperation, back to zhe light. It turnz out good deedz can be highly profitable, wizh a meazure going to Waukeen and Zelune of courze.

We work in zecret. We have no headquarterz. No army.

But we do have zheze.

Artimus explained pulling five tokens on chains from his pouch, trinkets in the shape of a scaled fist.

Zheze markz of zhe fizt, allow uz to keep in contact acrozz far flung diztancez wizh a zending dwomer.

Zhort Mezzagez can be zent all over zhe network.

Zhat iz how zhe Captain zent for me. How I found you in Ezmelteran and how merchant zhipz were diverted to zhe city arriving only hourz after we departed.

Up until now I waz happy to continue my quezt, zlowly taking back zhiz part of Amn reztoring zome balance. Amazzing zome modezt wealzh az we went.

But I can feel a darknezz rizing, what I have zeen here and in Ezmelteran only confirmz it.

Artimus’ face whitened and his eyes fell sallow as he recalled his encounter with the madness under the Isle.

Zhere are horrorz beyond life'z edge zhat we do not zuzpect, and once in a while man'z evil prying callz zhem juzt wizhin our range. It can undue uz, everyzhing we are, everyzhing we will ever be. Truly lozt. I myzelf waz nearly obliterated by my mere proximity to a namelezz zhing in zhe underearzh of a lozt izland.

Zhe fizt may need to do it'z part.

Zheze were not made for you all in mind, but perhapz may have been intended for you all along. Zhere are five after all.

Artimus said holding out the chained Kraken fist emblems.

You may accept zheze today wizh no ztringz, ozher zhan zhat of zhe promize of zecrecy.


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Re: Chapter Three

Post  Kellar on Tue Mar 31, 2015 7:38 pm

I'll bite. Give me one, he said to Artimus as he took one from him. How does one use this item anyway, he questioned as he looked it over.

Kellar looked at it and then looked at Orbaugh... Any chance it'd work on him? He's my eyes and ears after all, he said to Artimus with a grin.
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Re: Chapter Three

Post  Artimus DeLonde on Tue Mar 31, 2015 8:14 pm

Artimus smiled as Kellar was the first to reach for the an Emblem.

"Welcome Mon Amie."

Itz quite ingeniuz actually.

You zimply grasp the amulet and zhink of perzon whom you'd like to zend to, zomeone you're familiar wizh. Zee zubject recognizez you if  they know you. zhey can anzwer in like manner. A creature with even the zimplezt of intelligenze can comprehend the zending, though the zubject’z ability to react may be... how would you say... bazic.

Az for clever Orbaugh, He zhould have no problem.


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Re: Chapter Three

Post  Ao on Tue Mar 31, 2015 8:42 pm

Mazolath peers across the table at Artimus DeLonde, raising his eyebrow slightly as Artimus places the sigil of the Kraken's Fist upon the table.

The Red Wizard takes a deep drink of his tea, the tome forgotten.

"So, you are the founder of the infamous Kraken's Fist? Ho - you've been a thorn in the side of the powerbrokers of this city, captain...DeLonde, was it? You'll excuse me, my ears don't hear the Cormyrian tongue as well as they used to. I am aware of your organization. You harbour many allies - some of dubious intent. But I can see plainly, that you wear a white hat, ser."

He rubs his chin.

"Undoubtedly your connections up and down the Sword Coast will be useful, keeping us abreast of the situation in Amn. Whoever this dark cleric is, I don't doubt for a moment that his dark designs can be unriddled within the spine of this book."

He runs his hands along the spine of the book, a shudder roiling down his brittle frame. His long, grey beard twitches. The thin hair on his head is beaded with sweat, and Mazolath casually brushes it back, unpurturbed.

The wizard stands up, wincing at the pain of his leg. He casts a thankful glance to Dwan.

"I don't fear for myself, fellows. Despite the shape you see me in. I can hold my own against the dark powers that be. There is more fight in this old wizard than you give me credit for...stumbling across me in my moment of need. I appreciate your gesture, Shorjahl, but there is no need. I would sooner no others be exposed to the darkness within these pages. This decrepit old fool is of modest expense, next to your brillaint young mind, no doubt."

He suddenly seems tired, and collapses in a well worn leather armchair.

"Give me a week. Prepare yourselves, for we shall hunt demons when you return. I will unearth what significance this book has to your Cyricists in Amn, and we will put a stop to this calamity. Rest, now."

======================

Ok guys, we can do a few things. You can head out to the harpers, or if youre changing tack, you can let me know and we can simply screen wipe to "one week later".

How do you plan on getting your weapons enchanted, Kellar? Magical enchanting isn't really an everyday service in the realms - you'd have to seek that kind of thing out. If you can write me a nice, plausible story and supplement it with some rolls, we can see what we can do Smile

Where are you headed, fellows?

EXP: +30 for total party post.
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Re: Chapter Three

Post  Shorjahl on Wed Apr 01, 2015 3:12 pm

Shorjahl seems relieved to not be dealing with the book any longer, but still deeply troubled at his master's death. He speaks quietly with Mazolath about a service or funeral, and that he wishes to be there and support his former master's brother. After some time of quiet reflection, and mentally bidding farewell to Bargerohn, Shorjahl will speak with the group about their future plans.

Upon Kellar's suggestion, Shorjahl suggests that Thrirnan would more than likely be able to help, if not know someone who could. He would be happy to trade either his services, or the staff that Thrirnan identified, in order to augment his companion's weapons. He's eager to meet with the Harpers, and hopefully employ their help along with those of the Kraken's Fist. Beyond that, Shorjahl's mind is weary, and demands rest. Following the firm decisions of battlehardened friends is what he needs now.

----------------------

I'm literally just trying to imagine how messed up Shorjahl is right now, so rather than try to lead or have strong opinions like I usually do, I'm going to take a back seat for a bit. Shorjahl needs a rotation or two to get settled and find new inspiration to be a hero again, y'know? In The One Ring RPG (which heavily models Tolkien), he would be in need of a "Fellowship Phase," or a time of rest in relative safety in order to bounce back.

I know that's not particularly practical, but I'm having him not try so hard to be a leader now that his side quest is kind of done.
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Re: Chapter Three

Post  Custer Thickett on Wed Apr 01, 2015 10:09 pm

[OOC: I'm having a hell of a day so I am just going to make an OOC post for now, and will make up for it next rotation. Custer wants to see the Harpers to find out what the high Harper said, and gather any extra intelligence on Sorren. He is also still entertaining the theory that they are not Harpers and are playing tricks on everybody after their poor show of getting help for Esmeltaran in Athkatla and not taking him to meet the High Harper here in Bauldur's.

Custer wants to ask around town about Orcs and the like in the wilds around the city. He wants to see if there is reason to believe they may be mustering forces this far north.

Custer wants to ask about followers of Cyric in town. He is sure they have some presence already, and maybe a temple even if it is hidden away in some rotten basement.

Custer would like to try to make a plea to leaders of Bauldur's Gate to send aide to Esmeltaran.

Custer needs to see a tailor about a custom job.

Aside from all this, Custer would like to gather information on trade goods in the area that may could be hauled to Athkatla for a profit or grown at Mountain's Root.]

[Rolling Int to see if Cuss can recall any family/Cartel connections in Bauldur's Gate that may be an asset to his goals.]
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Re: Chapter Three

Post  DiceMaster on Wed Apr 01, 2015 10:09 pm

The member 'Custer Thickett' has done the following action : Dice Roller

'D20' : 10

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Re: Chapter Three

Post  Kellar on Thu Apr 02, 2015 2:06 am

Thrirnan... the, artifactor, right? Kellar asked Shorjahl. Right, artificer. I'll get the descriptions of things down eventually, he said with a grin. If you don't mind, I'd like to see the Harpers first before stopping to see Thrirnan. They should have some information for us, and I can see Adrianna, he stammered quickly at the end of his sentence. His skin turned a shade darker at the last part and then said, Well Little One, whenever you're ready. Anyone else coming along?

...
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Re: Chapter Three

Post  Ao on Thu Apr 02, 2015 1:03 pm

[Yessir, lets round all of that up in the marketplace! Ive created a thread and moved your 'Thrinan" stuff there. Cheers]
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Re: Chapter Three

Post  Custer Thickett on Thu Apr 02, 2015 1:23 pm

Custer had a look of astonishment when he took one of the chains from Artimus.  He held the necklace high, letting the golden fist dangle in front of his face.  He cradled the amulet with his other hand, and inspected it.  His lips quivered as he opened his mouth to speak, "It-It's beautiful, and to serve such a purpose as all that."  He looks at Artimus, "It is brilliant."

"I've spent me worthwhile life working for me father, whose primary interest has been to expand his power with well placed coin and subversion.  Merchants like the Cartel, working together, can conquer nations.  If only they had the same aspirations as you and your Kraken's Fist... Mayhaps I am meant to change that, no?  Tell me more."

Custer removes his own necklace of charms, and slides the golden Kraken's Fist on to sit with his Griffon talon between it and his symbol of Waukeen.

Later, he approaches Osvald.  "Lord Hale, ya said ya had business in town, yeah?  Do ya think the fella you know would have word on the activities of the savages in the wilds of these parts?"

===================
At Thrirnan's with Kellar
--------------------------------

One Kellar and Thrirnan have finished their business, Cuss steps forward and drops his pack on the ground.  He pulls it open to reveal the black cloth of K'Tesh's cloak inside.  "I've a mind to get this cloak fitted for me.  Can ya do something like you were telling me friend to this when I have it ready?  As for trade, well, I've a mind for many tools, but ya could hardly call my skills a trade.  I'm better at picking locks, setting traps, and mixing poisons than I be at making clothes, yeah?"  

Custer chuckles then scratches his chin in contemplation, "Being on the docks can be rough when the wrong crowd is about.  Do ya have any problems with thugs or hoods?"

When the conversation is drawing to a close, Custer's eyes widen, and he dives back into his pack, "Oh, yeah, I found this thing!  What's it do?"  Cuss comes out of the bag with the Chime of Opening recovered from the Shadow's Galleon.

=========
At a tailor
---------------

Custer sets his pack down on stool next to the table, and digs out K'Tesh's cloak and bundle of hair.  "It's too big for me, but that's better than too small, yeah?  I need it sized for me to wear, an I want to use some of the extra material for a new scarf."

The tailor leans on the edge of the table to look over it and down at the Halfling.  "I've several black cloaks your size in me wares.  Why don't you just take one of those and let me pay ya for this."  The tailor takes an edge of the cloak into his hand to feel the quality and age of the material.  "Oh, this is...  this is different.  I've none like this."

"Aye, it'd nay be a fair trade, no?  Even if ya paid me what it's worth.  I wants it for me own, an when ya have it fit, I want ya to embroider the sleeves, using this for thread."  Custer throws the bundle of silver hair onto the table.  The human stares at it a moment, then looks at Custer.  Custer speaks first, "I know, I know, but ya can do it, yeah?"  

=========
At the ship
---------------

Custer is below deck busy swapping out gear he needs for a trip back into the city.  He speaks to Ara, who is leaning against a bulkhead tearing into a fresh loaf of bread Cuss brought him from the Half-Orc baker.  "We gonna be in port for several days, seems like.  I know ya not going to stay on board the whole time.  Hells, to ask ya to is cruel by my count.  I have something ya could do for us iffen ya want.  Just past Bloomridge and the aqueducts I saw a footpad like you spilling filling of a high and mighty mark.  Real good work.  Might be ya could make some friends, yeah?  I doan know iffen the Shadow's are in Bauldur's Gate, but some group is surely hidden away in the shadows.  Would be nice to know who they know, yeah?"  Cuss frowns, "Best not be telling the others I put ya up to it, though.  Their soft hearts would worry about ya getting hurt, but I know ya smart enough to keep out of trouble the sort we found ya in, no?"  

==================
At a temple of Waukeen
------------------------------

Cuss kneels and takes the hand of the Halfling cleric, kissing the ring on her hand that is fashioned from an ancient gold coin.  He whispers up to her, Have ya felt the sorrow?  Esmeltaran has burned, more than half it's folk cut open by the blades of Cyric's minions.  What have our kind done to deserve such fate?  Why would one of our own turn against us so?"  Cuss's eyes cloud with tears.

Cuss consoles with the cleric,  ask on the follows of Cyric in Bauldur's Gate, and then purchases two healing potions.

=========
In a bunk
---------------

While Cuss is laying down on his back, he twist and turn the Kraken's Fist on his necklace in front of him, thinking on what Artimus said, 'Zhat iz how zhe Captain zent for me.'

Cuss holds his breath, and thinks of Pelegar, Pelegar, it's Custer Thickett. We are in Bauldur's Gate. How does the City fare? Has there been word of my family?
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Re: Chapter Three

Post  Osvald Hale on Thu Apr 02, 2015 2:05 pm

Osvald accepts the small amulet from Artimus.
The sea dog had a good heart, after all. Osvald supposed he had seen stranger things in this world...

Osvald accompanies Cuss on his journey around the city.

He lingers just within earshot as Cuss moves through the city, occasionally chiming in but usually remaining silent, idly fiddling with his silver cloak pin, the golden amulet tucked safely beneath his armor.

"Aye, Cuss. My mate Shandy'll be the one to see--but I think we best speak to the Harpers first. Any secrets he might share are most likely useless without context."

The ranger was of a mind that a good many of the Halflings queries could be answered by Shandy, but Osvald won't take Cuss to the stables with the Harper meeting happening in just a few hours--Osvald knew the old man wouldn't let them leave before a great many hours (and a great many flagons of ale) had passed, and they couldn't compromise the mission at hand--even for old times sake.

At Thrinans, Osvald stays outside. Chatting oddly with some dock workers about the goings on in the port of late.

...

As time passes and the party moves on, Osvald begins to supplement more of Cuss' questions to the city folk--asking about changes in wildlife around the city. If game had been spooked by anything of late, been moving unusually close to or far from the city.

He'll stop at a vendor stall and purchase a new waterskin when they pass by, and inquire within regarding a suitable tailor for Cuss.
When they reach the tailors, Osvald cocks an eyebrow as Cuss slaps the silver mane of hair onto the counter, and trades a helpless shrug with the tailor.

...

Osvalds ears perk up at Cuss' mention of Mountains Root--the name had come up again a few times on the long voyage north, and it had grown on Osvald. Even having only spent a few hours on the property, It had significance to the ranger and he thought back on it fondly.

Osvald knew much of wild things that grow--but markedly little on their purposeful cultivation. Cuss had some practical know-how of Pipe Weed, and Osvald the basics of wine distillation, and they agreed that would be a good place to start in addition to the fruit-bearing trees already plentiful on the property.
After some further discussion Osvalds mind was set--he intended to use the rewards garnered from their quest to fund a reconstruction of the wall around Mountains Root, to fortify the property, and make a proper home-stead and safe way station for friends and travelers.

When the reach the temple, Osvald bows slightly, and apologetically refuses Cuss' offer to step inside.

"Thank you Cuss, but my folk are simple mountain savages." He says, with a broad grin. "My gods are old, and the living have long forgotten their names. My temple is wherever the sky touches stone. I'll be here when you finish, friend. Say a prayer for those we've lost."

=====


Just tagging along with Cuss, Osvald doesn't have any pressing needs at the moment.

Some things he will want to take care of though during the week of study, after he hears from the harpers tonight.
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Re: Chapter Three

Post  Dwan Bolduum on Thu Apr 02, 2015 11:41 pm

Feeling a foreigner again, Dwan doesn't recognize the the Kraken's Fist, but judging from the wizard's tone he could recognize that this was no small organization.  I will have to find out more about the Fist when we have more time.

Dwan takes one of the amulets.  It is an honor, Artimus, for you to share such a valuable gift. He places it around his neck and places  it safely beneath his armor.  I will keep this close.

Dwan's resolve returns.  Kellar's plan is probably for the best.  We were caught off guard today with one demon, and we were lucky to come away as unscathed as we are now.  We must be prepared for other fiends with their other worldly defenses

He turns towards the broken window. We must be prepared for this thing, this cult, to show their true power.
_______________________________________

Dwan proceeds back to Thirnan's with the rest of the group. This time keeping the idle chit chat to a minimum, he lets Kellar take the lead as he seems to have more experience with modifying his gear.  

Once Thrinan gives Kellar his grocery list of items Dwan approaches.  Let me know what you need me to get. We're in this together, you don't have to do all of the work.

====================

Dwan is appreciative of Artimus's gift. It shakes him free of the shock of the day and causes him to try to rally the group.
He goes to the shop and offers to help Kellar in gathering materials for Thrirnan
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Re: Chapter Three

Post  Ao on Fri Apr 03, 2015 12:31 am

The fellowship drinks tea and questions the wizard until conversation wanes, and the elderly man’s eyes turn dark as he begins to pour over the tome, flipping the pages earnestly.

He seems to lose himself, looking up after an uncomfortably long silence and exhaling.

“Best if you return by the end of the week…fellows. There is an inn near the portsmouth - should you require lodging, speak to Amalythe there, and let her know Mazolath will keep the tab.”

With that, the wizard places the dark book under his arm and ascends the stairs.

[…]

Several hours pass, as the fellowship fans out through Baldur’s Gate, exploring her canals and alleyways and streets.

As the sun begins its descent towards the horizon, you find yourselves reunited at the Three Old Kegs, a multi-floored inn bedecked with wrought iron lanterns that seem to shimmer like a beacon from down the block.

The three-storey wooden structure is dark and beautiful, with ornate iron windows and a warm glow that seems to permeate all about her. A strong jig kicks up from inside, and though its nestled in a sleepy corner of the market square, all about her perimeter there are revellers and drunks cajoling and carrying on out into the street.

The smell of sweat reaches your noses as you approach the door, where a lineup of patrons literally spills out onto the verandah and wraps about the rustic porch of the building.

Serving women in dapper black dresses flit between patrons, with overflowing flagons of mead and ale.

You approach, when suddenly Andrianna’s towering figure pushes out from the doorway, tailed by Geld who bears two pitchers of fragrant beer. She espies you, and struts over in your direction.

“Gods, thank Helm you lot found your way here presently. If I have to spend another minute in that sweat-drenched hovel-“

Geld tutts at her, pushing at her thighs and prodding her down the stairs.

“You’ve no appreciation for city life, Andrianna! This is what it means to be civilized, woman! Forget the battlefield for once, and revel in the lanterns and hearths of the true world.”

Andrianna rolls her eyes, pointing to a cluster of vacant merchant stalls on a craggy patch of grass.

“We’ll sit, and discuss our business there. Away from the fondling drunkards in that hive of scum.”

As if to punctuate her point, a bottle cascades brilliantly through the dusky sky from the second floor, crashing upon the cobbles in a shower of glass.

The crowd goes silent, and then a drunken cheer echoes through the market ward.

[…]

You settle down onto the grass with the Harpers, Geld reluctantly passing around the pitchers of beer. The brew is heady and smells of wheat and sumac. Tart, and drinkable.

“Here we are, drinking like savages in the woods. What use is a city, when we always live like rangers?” mutters Geld.

The Harpers make small talk for a moment as you settle in, but matters soon turn to business at hand.

“…and so, our appointment with the High Harper was delayed an hour. Finally, we were able to see him.” continues Geld.

Andrianna reclines on the grass, staring up at the sky, and listening to her cohort speak.

“We reported to him on the status of Esmeltaran. He had heard - the High Harper of Athkatla had sent a missive to Baldur’s Gate by owl, along with Tethyr. Undoubtedly some of our kind have mobilized to Amn, and will aid the local militia in an investigation. But…Amn is not kind to the Harpers, fellows. Their results will be hindered.”

Geld looks thoughtfully into his beer, and takes another swig.

“We briefed him on Soren-“

“And got a dark look in return, no less.” piped Andrianna from the grass.

Geld nods uncomfortably.

“It seems Soren left the Harpers channels years ago. He was well respected, once, alongside his brother Vesuvio. They were red-pins in our organization, a distinction of service to the Sword Coast. But Vesuvio was murdered by pirates, degenerates flying the holy flag of Umberlee the Sea Bitch-“

Andrianna sits up quickly, clearing her throat.

“An evil one. Good and bad men follow her out of fear. She rules the seas, and takes life away when it suits her. Despite her alignment, the Flaming Fists allow her clerics to keep a temple down by the wharf. The Water Queen’s House, they call it. A blasphemous place, but in a city of sailors, none are too keen to protest its existence.”

Geld nods, and adds,

“Yes. It seems Soren sought to enlist the Harpers in a vendetta against Umberlee and her priests. Somewhat violently, when he was refused the first time. Vengeance is not the hallmark of a Harper, fellows, and he was chastised, stripped of rank, and sent away to Luskan. A bit excessive, by my estimation, but the Harpers cannot abide vigilantes in our ranks. We’ve enough challenges keeping in the graces of government and the people, given the natural suspicion that accompanies our secrecy…”

Geld drains the pitcher, leaning against a market stall.

“The High Harper has renewed three bounty-men to find Soren. Undoubtedly, they will. The dogs always do. But the Urn of the Flame Lord presents an even more curious question mark.”

The gnome pull out a piece of paper, removing a looking glass from his pocket and reading over it.

“Vault eighty-seven, the vault that Soren and his Dark Lanterns broke into, belonged to House Woodrech, a wealthy trading family that have lived in Baldur’s Gate for three centuries. The High Harper had a messenger fetch Woodrech’s personal ledger, minded by the Baldurian exchequer authority. It seems that an item, in vault eighty-seven, matching the description of a clay urn, was withdrawn six months ago by Thorold Woodrech. He is the only son of Gregor Woodrech, the aging family patriarch.”

Andrianna swats at a fly hovering by her head. She spits, her budding ladylike grace shattered by the soldier’s gesture.

Geld continues,

“The mystery is, Thorold disappeared three days ago from the family’s estate. They keep a manor in Bloomridge, and the Flaming Fists have been searching for him for days. He has not been found in Baldur’s Gate.”

He stands up quickly, stretching his back.

“It is a curious circumstance. As promised fellowship, the 5,000 gold pieces have been delivered to Trois Pistoles this afternoon. Your crewmen accepted the payment, captain DeLonde. But I must implore you - something does not sit right with me about this situation. I don’t know where the Urn is now, or where Thorold is, but with a man like Soren after it, undoubtedly the situation is dire. Will you aid in this investigation, fellows? I cannot offer you more coin, but I know you’re the type to see this through to the end.”

Andrianna looks towards you, and you can tell she is watching to see how you will answer.

=======================

Ok guys, big post tonight. I didn’t get to deal with some of the more administrative stuff. The flavour posts from you guys were AWESOME!

Kellar, remind me to deal with the enchanting post in the marketplace, for all of you guys.

Custer, if I understand correctly you’re entreating Ara to infiltrate the local thieve’s guild? Just confirm that with me.

Also, for the In a Bunk section Custer - Pelegar does not reply. If you ask Artimus, over long distances there is a lag between when the message is relayed, and when it can be answered. Remind me of this - next post rotation.

EXP: +50 to all who posted, for the very flavourful posts.
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Re: Chapter Three

Post  Custer Thickett on Fri Apr 03, 2015 1:31 pm

Not wanting to soil his Surcoat, Custer remains standing while sipping on the tankard the Harpers had handed him.  His mood is pleasant and mellow.  The sounds of the tavern's revelry put him at ease.  He smiled as he took notice of Geld's posture.  This High Harper sound's real enough, and he paid us.  We actually got paid.  Five thousand though?  Cuss's eyes roll as he tries to do math.  Eh, ah...  Kilik!  He promised one thousand each when Kilik was still with us.  That lout's probably back at the Root right now...  

Cuss's eyes float to Artimus.  The Captain has our coin.  Cuss closes his eyes and turns his tankard up, draining it in five large gulps.  He belches as he pulls the empty vessel from his mouth.  He thumps his chest once to get as much gas out as he can, in effort to extend the sound.  URP!  Ah!  Got's to taste it twice, yeah?

Cuss responds to Geld, "Thank ya for paying early.  Generous,  yeah?"  Cuss steps toward Andrianna, holding out his empty tankard and hoping she had enough Ale left in the pitcher beside her to refill it.  "Ya seem quite worried about this Soren.  I already told ya I'd help iffen ya help us find Kesian, no?  It's peculiar to me that Soren has a vendetta against a god her church.  Do ya think he could have turned to another for assistance finding that vengeance?"

Custer follows the answer with, "Be that as it may, this venture became rather more complicated in your absence, Harpers.  We were almost killed by a Demon today.  A friend is dead, and that thing is still out there somewhere.  Mayhaps even in the city."  Cuss pauses a moment to let the news settle in, then follows with a question.  "We suspect it to be of Cyric.  Did ya High Harper say anything about him, Kesian, or Sothis?"

------------

Yes, Ao, I was hoping he could gather a little intel for us.  Cuss hopes that a former footpad of the Shadow's could be useful and sees this as a sort of test to find out if the little bugger is worth anything more than trouble.
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Re: Chapter Three

Post  Shorjahl on Fri Apr 03, 2015 4:35 pm

Shorjahl sighs heavily as he looks into his mug, one of the only times any of his comrades have seen him drink spirits. "I don't think I'll ever be able to sleep again, knowing that this mess is unresolved." He gives Geld a hard look. "I'm in through to the end - but I want to see Keisan and his forces brought low."

------------------------

Shorjahl's along for the ride, as discussed in the OOC post upthread.
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Re: Chapter Three

Post  Osvald Hale on Fri Apr 03, 2015 6:52 pm

Osvald leans quietly on an empty stall while the Harpers talk. He snorts out a laugh at Gelds ranger remark, but let's the gnomes comment slide without retort.

...

The ranger nods in agreement, eyes locked on stars above the city sprawling into the distance, "Aye, I mean to see this thing through. We need to cut out this evil at its source, wherever it may lie, to disperse the Orc war bands back into their caves. The mountain folk will know no peace until we do so. My family pledged long ago to protect the Small Teeth and those that dwell upon them, and I intend to uphold that pledge to the death." he looks down to meet his friends eyes in turn, a wide grin leaping across his face; "Besides, where in the hundred hells am I gonna find this much heart-racing excitement? No, no-- Certainly can't have you lot hogging all the glory without me."
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Re: Chapter Three

Post  Custer Thickett on Fri Apr 03, 2015 11:52 pm

Once it becomes painfully obvious that Andrianna was not going to fill Cuss's tankard, he heaves it into the air as high as he can. In a flash, he pulls K'Tesh's bow free from it's holster, cocks the legs and string, loads it, aims for the falling cup, and fires. The bolt strikes and shatters it high above the ground, raining pieces of clay and dust down on the group.

Cuss winks at Andrianna, then looks at Geld and says, "If Thorold took a trip to Athkatla six months ago to withdraw this Urn properly, as you say, then why was it reported to you as lost when Soren used the forged writ to access the vaults?"  

Geld's look of confusion frustrates Cuss.  He begins to pace and ramble.  "Might be they had taken something else then?  Might be that when they realized the Urn wasn't there, they came back to Bauldur's to get Thorold?  Might be Thorold knew they wanted it, and that's why he went to go get it first, yeah?  Mayhaps he left a replica?  He had to know he was in danger.  Why not tell somebody?  Or did he?  Who?"

Cuss stops pacing and talking, then looks at Artimus, "Do ya know of this House Woodrech?"

[Rolling int to see if Cuss recognizes House Woodrech]
16


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Re: Chapter Three

Post  DiceMaster on Fri Apr 03, 2015 11:52 pm

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Re: Chapter Three

Post  Custer Thickett on Sat Apr 04, 2015 12:11 am

Double (triple) posting to do something fancy.

[Sleight of Hand +5]
20 To pull and load bow before cup hits ground.

[Hand Crossbow shot +6]
21 To shoot the cup.


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Re: Chapter Three

Post  DiceMaster on Sat Apr 04, 2015 12:11 am

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Re: Chapter Three

Post  Artimus DeLonde on Sat Apr 04, 2015 12:14 am

At Mazoleth’s

Well Mazolezh, I’m honored you’ve heard of uz, I would have felt zhe fool if we were totally unknown to you and furiouz wizh myzelf if it came az no zhock. You knowing my level of involvement wizh zhe Krakenz fizt’z iz a clear rizk. In zhe rare caze zhat I reveal myzelf wizh zuch…candor, it leavez me vulnerable. I typically comfort myzelf by tozzing out a deazh zhreat… perhapz two for extra meazure. In zhiz inztance I have no chance of making good on zuch a zhreat my trez fort magicien. I expect I’d find myzelf turned to a newt or a zimilarly zized pile of azh. Before, zhat iz,  you’d have to anzwer to my blade.  

An Irony.  Zhat It’s your -zeldom rivaled- power zhat workz in favor of my allianze. We find you above zhe influence of many of zhe power brokers of which you zpeak.

It is hope zhat I am zhought of as a man who aided in your from a devil.

Not one who ztruck your blood down.

May I extend my to you and to you Shorjahl. My condolences, for you loss.

Maintnain.  Gentlemen, Speaking of zhe rivaling power,  It is as Dwan says, it was eizher sheer luck or divine favor zhat any of us are standing. We must be ready for zhe next confrontation or we will be burying anozher.

Let us all prepare as we must.  Zhe devil seemed to resist your strikes Kellar, and your arrows Osvald. My blade seemed to cut just as deep as it normally would. My blade is not silver, but I have heard it said zhat it hones an edge to….. how can It be said…  zhose who side between zhe places between places.  
To Dawn and Osvald

It iz my pleazure to have you accept zheze emblemz offer mon ami-z. zhe way iz ahead dangerouz, it iz better not to go alone. I will inztruct you in zheir uze if you’d like.

To Cuss

I believe It iz no miztake zhat we’ve met ‘mon voleur capable’, I feel az if an invizible hand iz uzhering uz all into line. You’re experience in zhe zide gallery az your fazher ztaged hiz federation like commonwealzh iz a zingularly unique one.

May I azk, if zhe matter iz not too delicate..?  What claim or influence would you have over your fazher’z empire zhould he not return. Connected to zhe fizt, zhey would bozh benefit.

=========

After the Harpers meeting

Artimuz glanced around zhe table, at zhe mention of zhe harperz attempted aid to Ezmeltaran. Not to worry mon ami, I have it on good auzhority zhat Ezmeltaran haz taken into harbor a expedition of zkilled tradezmen on zheir voyage home from Eshpurta and a handful of ambitiouz merchantz of dry fruit, zpicez and wine. Zhe free and undizcerning hand of commerce it zeemz. Zhey will not ztarve or freeze wizh zhe falling zeazon.

What luck… non?

Forgive me Andrianna,  Geld, You can underztand zhe trepidationz of zhe people, you Harper’z mean well and zeem to ztir up half zhe commotion you ztop.
Zheze zhadow groupz are all zuzpect in my eyez… Artimuz Remarked, quickly hiding hiz zmirking mouzh in a meazure of peaty ale.
And not to worry Mon Amiez… firzt officer Zavoie will make zure you get your zhare of zhe coin zhould you need it. In zhe mean time it iz zafe zhould you not want to carry about zhe meazure of it around zhe ztreetz.

Az for zheze matterz, of zhe devil, Cyrciztz and zhe urn. I will azk zome of my zailor
comradez what zhey know.


Ok guys, sorry for the absence,  I was moving and still kinda am.  Really blown away by each of your writing,  really enjoying it.  I tried to play catch up this post and will have more in the next.

Artimus reaches out to the Kraken’s fists Net of information asking about
And Cyrcist movements or devils.

Soren, and the Urn

Orc movements,  or Dragon sightings

Investigation?

1d20[/size]
Luck


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Re: Chapter Three

Post  DiceMaster on Sat Apr 04, 2015 12:14 am

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Re: Chapter Three

Post  Kellar on Sat Apr 04, 2015 12:33 pm

...Mazolath...
Amalythe, got it. One of us will bring food and check back on you each day until you've completed the book, Kellar said. If not to bring food, more so to check your sanity each day...

...Three Old Kegs...
Kellar watches the crowd at the Inn and then sees Andrianna moving through the crowd. He looks down at Custer and nudges him slightly, There's a sight for sore eyes, he said as he nodded toward her. As the Harpers neared the group, Kellar nodded to Andrianna and said, It's good to see you again. He felt Geld brush past him out the door and head toward the vacant stalls. I guess it's nice to see you too, Geld, he muttered.

As the group found their spots on the grass, Kellar sat nearest Andrianna and heard Geld's remark about savages and rangers and replied, Careful gnome, I've spent many nights in the wild. Would you call me savage? He took the tankard passed from Andrianna and took a long drink from it and smirked at Geld. As Andrianna laid back on the grass, he looked down at her, and then looked up to see what she was observing. Lots of stars this evening.

Orbaugh played in the grass a while and flitting about in between all the adventurers and eventually returned to Kellar. He scurried down his arm toward the tankard and his tiny head disappeared into it. His head popped up, looking around at everyone there, he had a white beard made of foam, covering his mouth and snout. He looked up to his master, Tart. Orbaugh like! His head disappeared again into the tankard one last time and then he climbed down between Kellar and Andrianna and curled up next to his master.

...The Flaming Urn...
I don't see why we wouldn't help find Thorold. All this work I'm doing on the side is a bit much, so it'll be nice to take a break from it. Master Dwan, how did the collection of beeswax go anyway? he asked. I agree with Shorjahl, we can see this thing through to completion. No further compensation sours me a bit, but I'd imagine that we'd be able to collect items from the investigation, he questioned Geld. Also, there might be a day in between where we need to stop at Thrirnan's for some items. Adrianna, lend me your sword for an evening and it'll be returned with minor improvements. Uh, if that's okay? I know soldiers have a particular way about their equipment, he said to Andrianna.

Actions:

Kellar will agree to investigate Thorold, and also asked for Andrianna's weapon for the evening and will return to her with an enchantment upon it when it's returned to her, if she agrees to it.
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Re: Chapter Three

Post  Ao on Sat Apr 04, 2015 2:35 pm

[custer, int]

Try as he might, the halfling cannot recall any dealings with this house woodrech. That, in and of itself, meant that they were a lesser trading house. Likely of similar stature and wealth to the Thicketts. Powerful in their city walls, but of limited reach in the broader sense.

Geld frowns as Custer paces, positing questions about Thorold.

"The urn was reported as lost, Custer, as we only collected the official ledger from the Baldurian exchequer yesterday. These are independent records kept by merchant houses with their local trade council. Custody of knowledge concerning vaults and merchant houses is a messy affair - and the Harpers can only glean what information we can from our informants."

Geld rubs his chin.

"These are good questions though, halfling. Thorold presumably withdrew the item, knowing that it would be targeted by Soren. But how did he come to know this Dark Lantern? It wouldn't surprise me to know that this... Thorold had connections to the underworld. He wouldn't be the first troubled son of a frugal, shrewd merchant master."

Andrianna looks at Orbaugh, rubbing the dragon behind its ears. Geld continues.

"The Flaming Fists have already questioned the family. Andrianna and I will seek an audience with them - but it's been days since Thorold was seen. If Soren found his way into the vault, only to find that the urn was missing, then I'm sure Thorold would have been his target for retribution or more information. Odds are good that the young Woodrech heir is either in hiding, or a more dire situation."

Andrianna interjects before Geld can speak again, obviously tiring of his investigative monologue.

"We need to find out where and what this urn is, and undoubtedly those answers would be had by finding Thorold. Fellows, we'll see what the family knows. Perhaps you can use your contacts in Baldurs Gate to find someone who knows him, or where he might have gone."

The fellowship finishes off the last of the beer with the Harpers, and Andrianna scoffs as Kellar asks for her sword.

"You'd take my sword, lancer? And then what would I be? No, I trust her only in my own hands. She cuts well enough."

Andriannas sharp, mocking tone seems inappropriate and excessive for the moment, and for a second her eyes betray a fondness for Kellars offering. But she stands up, brushing the grass from her armor, and nodding to the group.

"Geld and I will investigate the Woodrech estate. We'll be staying at the Three Old Kegs tonight, gods have mercy." She says, rolling her eyes.

"Goodnight." Geld stands, and Andrianna casts an awkward glance at Kellar, with a half-smile that looked somewhere between a scowl and flirtation.

Then, they turned to leave.

===========+++===•======

Ok guys, this is an information gathering rotation. A couple of things:

Some of you have contacts in Baldurs Gate. You can roleplay a conversation with them, with some dice rolls.

Those that don't, can go elsewhere and roleplay some gather information checks (alone or with other party members)

Artimus, if you're going to spend time reading out to the Krakens Fist I'd like you to share exactly what words you're using, and who you're reaching out to. Take this as an opportunity to explain how the communication system works. I can't imagine that it's a network of hundreds of people, and you're simply broadcasting into their ears at all times. I'll let you set the parameters.

I'll also be checking in to the marketplace thread.

Do me proud with Intel gathering guys! The strength of your posts & rolls will determine how valid your Intel is. And I promise, poor Intel will yield some poor circumstances.

Ps - te Harpers audience with their high Harper had nothing to do with Keisan or Sothis. Sorry I didn't answer that in post, cuss. You can assume that Geld didn't have an opportunity to ask

Exp: +20
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Re: Chapter Three

Post  Custer Thickett on Tue Apr 07, 2015 12:21 pm

Custer slides the crossbow back into it's holster as the Harper's bid their farewells.  He says to the others, "Well, fellas, shall we get a table here or make our way to Amalythe's?  If we are staying there rather than on the ship, I'd like to get a good look at the place and meet some of the patrons and staff, yeah?"

After a decision is made and the groups begins to move, Cuss brings up his intentions for the next day.  "Seems like we need be investigating Cyric on our own.  The Harper's are no help there.  Might be I'll visit me Golden Lady's temple again and inquire as to followers of the Laughing Halfling.  I'll see what they have to say about the Sea Bitch as well."

Where ever the group ends up, Custer claims a table large enough for the lot by whatever means necessary, and collects a large plate of meat, potatoes, and vegetables.  "Oiy, It'll be nice to eat something that isn't covered in salt.  If my plate has a lemon on it, I'll shove it up your nose!"

At a point fitting for the subject, Custer leans over the table motioning with his hand for the others to lean close.  He says, "Ya know, I've been thinking on the Root and Pistoles.  There is an opportunity for investment.  After this thing with Soren is settled, might be we go our own way to find Sothis and Kesian, yeah?  That hunt may eventually exhaust our resources, and we can't expect to find somebody to pay us for it, no?  I'm not the type to beg for hand outs."

Custer settles back into his chair upright, and shoves another helping into his mouth while he awaits a response from the others.  Half way through chewing the bite, he shrugs and speaks with his mouth full, "Any ideas?"  Cuss swallows, "With the ship, we can trade.  With the Root, we can harvest and mayhaps even craft, yeah?"

::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::
At the temple of Waukeen
::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::

Custer kneels before the priest, taking her hand and kissing the ancient ring on her finger.  "I thank ya for ya council, me lady.  My heart was heavy carrying the grief of a home half burned.  The faces of those that were slaughtered did not haunt my dreams last night.  Rather, I saw those of the guilty.  I should have been angered, but I found peace and rest in their company, for I know what must be done.  I know what I must do.  Before, when Waukeen showed me, I did not see.  Even with the council of my lost love, I was blind."  Custer absently rubs the symbol of Waukeen hanging around his neck.  "But now..."

Custer sniffles, and stands.  He looks the priest in the eye, and ask for her help.  "Tell me where I may find the followers of Cyric here in Baldur's Gate."  Cuss opens his palm to show her a pendant taken from the body of a fallen brute in Esmeltaran.  Cuss says, "This is the symbol of those that attacked Esmeltaran.  Their leader carved it into the very sky above the Old Meritian Palace ruins.  I assure you I will not trouble them if they are innocent, but I must know that they do not plan for this city to meet the same fate as mine.  If such a plot is afoot here, then I've little time to stop them.  Tomorrow could see Kesian and Sothis at the gates.  You should know, a demon that is an avatar of Cyric is loose in the city.  Yesterday, it killed a powerful Wizard. I suspect it is in hiding among its allies here. Where else would a demon hide in a city such as this?"

[Going for a persuasion roll to get help finding the followers of Cyric in town +6]
26

Custer nods at the answers.  After bringing that conversation to a close [next post rotation], Cuss follows with two more questions.  "Me lady, there is another matter where I require ya guidance.  There is a group that wishes to carry out some type of attack of vengeance against the temple of Umberlee.  They will not let anything stand in the way of their goal, and may have taken a well known merchant named Woodrech captive or worse.  I wish to help the merchant and make sure the innocent are not harmed, but Umberlee?  Should I care that they reap the investment they have sowed in this groups thirst for revenge?"  After she answers, Cuss ask, "Do ya know anything of Woodrech that may help me find em?"

[Rolling investigation for details on Woodrech +0]
14

============

Where are these Cyricist in Bauldur's Gate?
Does the priest know of Woodrech?

Reminder:  Pelegar


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Re: Chapter Three

Post  DiceMaster on Tue Apr 07, 2015 12:21 pm

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#1 'D20' : 20

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Re: Chapter Three

Post  Ao on Tue Apr 07, 2015 10:09 pm

The priestess of Waukeen peers at Custer through her thin veil. Hot candles burn down in thick puddles of wax, and beyond the stout halfling Cleric a group of sermon-men chant around an altar of gold.

"...it is so pleasing to meet one of such fervent faith as yourself, Custer." She continues, with a pleasant smile.

When the conversation turns to questions about Cyric and his followers, she purses her mouth.

"Aye, the servants of the mad god are always about. For where we are light, we cannot exist without the dark. Baldurs gate is home to many unsavoury characters, chiefly among the thieves guild of the Broken Arrow. Undoubtedly, some of their ranks are in favour of the God of murder and deceit, Cyric."

She pauses, fitfully.

"I know a young man by the name of Cecil, who once ran out with the Broken Arrows. His father is a wealthy member of our clergy, and it didn't take long to crook him back into the fold. He's a peculiar fellow - lives by himself in the eastern end of the city. But undoubtedly he'd have some more information on the underbelly, and the dealings of such dark folk."

When custer mentions the demon, she gasps.

"Waukeen protect us! Such a threat..." She looks round, pulling Custer into an alcove.

"Best keep your voice down, son. We don't want to cause a riot with such fearful things. The church keeps a few men on retainer - and one of them is in with the Flaming Fists. I'll let them know of the situation, and if I hear anything further, I'll let you know."

She listens to Custers further inquiry about Umberlee and her aggressors.

Her lips curl when he mentions the sea bitch, but she lets him finish before saying;

"I'd never condone retribution, Custer. Waukeen forbids it. But if I were to ever witness it against the clerics of Umberlee, you'd bet that Id not shed a tear. The woodrech clan though..."

Here, she looks queerly at Custer.

"Yes, i know them well. In fact, the man I told you about - Cecil. He is brother to Thorold Woodrech..."

She pauses.

"It seems too much coincidence brooks our conversation. Surely a sign from Waukeen. Here-"

She rips a piece of parchment from her notebook, and writes an address down on paper.

87 Cainel Street

"This is Cecil's apartment. He's a skittish young man. Best not to intimidate him. Oh - and you didn't receive that parchment from me."

She smiles at Custer.

"Walk in the light of Waukeen, my son."

==================

Ok guys, you have a lead on Cecil here.

If there is any other information gathering you wish to do, then proceed.

The sidebar adventures have been fun so far, but let's rein it in right now and get on a good path. I sense a bit of directionless ness and some lack of pacing, so I invite you guys to help move the story along while we are in 'city mode'

Cheers

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Re: Chapter Three

Post  Custer Thickett on Wed Apr 08, 2015 2:58 pm

Custer takes the parchment and keeps his voice low in the alcove, "Thank you, me lady. You say Thorold and Cecil are brothers? I was told Gregor Woodrech had but one son. How could that be?"

[Custer will push for some sort of answer here, as he is curious why the Harpers would report Thorold as an only son. Investigation roll +0]

Custer stashes the address in his bracer, and takes his leave. Outside the temple, he walks to a merchant stall and purchases a turkey leg for a couple of coppers. He takes a thin cloth from a pouch and uses it to hold the leg to keep his hands clean. He then ask the vendor for directions to Cainel Street.

Custer makes his way through the narrow streets while eating on the leg. He pays attention to the signs and finds the location of Cecil's apartment. He throws the leg bone away in an barrel of refuse and wipes his hands and face clean with the thin cloth, wetting it with water from his wetskin. He hooks the serviette through his belt to dry, and surveys the area observing the buildings, business, and types of people either traveling through, vending, loitering, hanging laundry, or peering from windows and balconies.

Custer hopes to spy some type of cafe, commons, tavern with outdoor seating or the like where he could linger without drawing too much unwanted attention and also keep a line of sight on the door to Cecil's apartment. Ideally, Custer hopes to spot Cecil coming or going from his apartment. When that happens, he will decide whether to approach, follow, or head back to the others for backup.

There he will wait and watch while making small talk with patrons and merchants. He'll tell a story of being from the south and looking for a long lost friend. He won't share the name though, saying he hadn't seen his friend in years and knew that once upon a time he didn't take too kindly to people from out of town asking about him. Showing off his symbol of Waukeen, he'd say that he trust the Lady of Luck to bring them together. Cuss will smoke his pipe if waiting long, but will try to keep any consumption of alcohol to a minimum.

If no sight by nightfall, Cuss will see if there is a room for rent with line of sight on the apartment, and purchase it for a one night's stay.

======

I can add more flavor to the post if you want to cut in with confirmation or details on the setting. Cuss is traveling alone unless you want to allow somebody to retcon in. Slackers. :^P
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Re: Chapter Three

Post  Ao on Wed Apr 08, 2015 3:19 pm

[Yeah, you guys can all assume to have met Custer somewhere along the way. Would rather keep the party unsplit, for storyline sake Smile ]
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Re: Chapter Three

Post  Shorjahl on Wed Apr 08, 2015 5:13 pm

Shorjahl, largely lost in his own thoughts and contemplations, flits around with his fellows over the intervening days. At nightfall, they sometimes wake to him sitting upright on his cot, dressed only in trousers, hands placed upon his crossed legs, taking deep breaths. His appetite has returned, and while his demeanor and speech is less cordial than the optimistic young mage they had met weeks ago - some of the glimmer and light of his earlier self has begun to creep back into his countenance.

After several days, he finally sleeps well, and begins eating voraciously. There hardly goes a moment when the arcanist can't be seen his mouth half full of some cream-heavy drink or husk of bread and vegetables, although his distaste for meat remains consistent. A bath and shave brings his hair and beard back in good form, but notably the scars he suffered from the demon's fire has forever altered his face - leaving twisted and white marks upon his forehead and cheeks, half of his right eyebrow having completely disappeared, and some of his hairline receding from a broad, pink burn atop his head.

This minor cosmetic damage is nothing compared to the severe marks and scars he'll bear on his forearms for the rest of his life - the once tan and corded skin there is now little more than a white, writhing mass of scars, punctuated by bright pink scabs and blackened charred bits of recovering muscle. He doesn't shy away from showing his injuries, however continues wearing long sleeves and robes in all but the warmest days at Baldur's Gate.

In more than one instance, he can be seen staring longingly out at the harbor, out a window, or into the canopies of nearby trees. When prompted, he quickly dismisses it and returns to the task at hand - but his comrades know that he is anxious to move on. His obligations to them, and to the people of Esmelteran, far outweigh any dealings with the Harpers or the promise of gold.

On the night Cuss ventures to the lodge, Shorjahl agrees to accompany him - as they were the first two to acquaint themselves in this party of adventurers, he feels a natural kinship with the hin. Shorjahl has always had a fondness for the shortfolk, and appreciates their stalwart tenacity in the face of a much larger and fiercer world than it is for one as large as he. While in the lodging, the wizard sits quietly within arm's reach of Cuss, playing a table game against any who would care to sit and join him, buying drinks for the winners and sipping tea and eating vegetable stew while they wait.

--------------------

Tagging along with Cuss.
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Re: Chapter Three

Post  Kellar on Wed Apr 08, 2015 6:07 pm

Kellar put the finishing touches on his wares for Thrirnan and left to meet up with Custer to see what all he'd missed during his time working to barter for improved weapons.

I hope the effort is worth it for weapons that will aid us against our new enemy... he thought to himself as he and Orbaugh walked through the city.

Kellar happened upon a small café where he found Custer and Shorjahl sitting and visiting. He looks better than I when I last saw him. The lancer waved to them and he walked over to them and then drew himself a seat.

Afternoon, he said to his companions. I've been busy, how about you two, he questioned. He looked at both of them and then waved for a drink and some of the vegetable stew Shorjahl was having.

Kellar began eating and then said, I think your Thrirnan runs a hard bargain. At any rate, our weapons should have an enchantment upon them.

Kellar flipped a few potatoes toward Orbaugh while he ate and drank. I'm interested in resolving this issue the Harpers have, even if my intentions are for one and not a greater cause, he said with a grin.
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Re: Chapter Three

Post  Ao on Wed Apr 08, 2015 8:21 pm

The small coffee house is nestled between two tall wooden apartment dwellings, shrouded in thick layers of fragrant grape vines.

It is evening, and outside the grey sky begins to betray the last light of day, as a gentle rain patters softly upon the stone route of Cainel street.

You sit in the window, around a large oak table dimly lit by flickering candle. A flute player ambles about aimlessly on his instrument over by an enormous, potted plant. The sound is both melancholy and soothing.

Another steaming hot brew of herbs and coffee bean is placed on the table in front of you, through a thick plume of Custers pipesmoke.

The smell is intoxicating, like rich chocolate and tart apricot. But the halfling's eyes are diverted to the apartment building across the way.

It is a quiet set of two buildings nestled closely together, with an ajar iron gate leading into a small alley, where a set of rustic wooden stairs lead up on either side into the two tenements. There are four floors, and iron lanterns beam softly from within the darkness of the laneway.

Overgrown plants dangle from wooden beams hammered into the masonry, giving the fine dwelling a look of intrigue and artistry.

However, Custer is not noticing either of those elements, presently. Instead, his attention is taken with two men who sit idly by the iron gate, seemingly chatting about nothing and smoking pioneered.

But they are anything but idle. Both men are clad in thick leathers, which despite the nipping cold in the air, are far more armouring than necessary for an honest citizen.

The two men eye the street, and look often to the apartment building behind them, keeping their eye fixated on a specific door on the second floor.

They wear no weapons, but undoubtedly their cloaks conceal a dagger or two. These are detail men, guarding or staking out the residence.

Every so often, they'll wander away from the front area to a small copse of trees and plants, to smoke a separate pipe that fires wisps of vibrant purple smoke into the evening sky.

But their attention is never far from the apartment.

As Orbaugh nibbles on a potato, Custers thoughts are cast toward what the cleric said, about Cecil.

"Gregor Woodrech has but one legitimate son, Custer. But his bastards must number in the dozens across Faerun, the way that filthy old man carries his business. But I only know of Cecil, in Baldurs gate. He was close with his brother, despite their separate heritage. Though, I suspect Cecil remains more of a secret in public, so to speak. Indeed, the Woodrech patriarch had a mind for politicking more than salvation when he made sure his illegitimate son cut ties with the broken arrow..."

Indeed, if anyone with dark intentions was looking for Thorold knew of his brother, unquestionably he would be also in danger.

The serving woman comes over again, gingerly placing a wooden plate of mint truffles upon the table.

"That'll be five gold, sirs. Would you like me to keep them coming?"

This place would be the death of your wallets.

=================•===

Ok guys, you can all assume to be in the coffee house, staking out the apartment.

Let me know, specifically, your next course of action.

You can feel free to take some liberties with the terrain. It's a city, so you can make assumptions for any details that might serve to make things more interesting

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Re: Chapter Three

Post  Custer Thickett on Thu Apr 09, 2015 1:14 pm

Cuss blows an O ring of smoke across the table, then addresses the server.  "This smells delightful, no?  We'll let ya know when we be needing more."  Cuss winks to the girl as he fingers five gold coins from his pouch.  He arrays them between his fingers and holds his hand up, then motions with his head for her to come closer.  "Let me ask ya something, yeah?"  She looks about nervously, and blushes behind her smile, but approaches.  Cuss keeps his voice low, "See those two down there in front of that iron gate?  Do ya know em?"

After she answers, "Well, they keep going over by that tree and puffing on purple.  I'd like to try that, me thinks.  I want you to take them two of these truffles.  Tell em that a patron saw their purple smoke, and would like to buy just enough for his pipe, if they'd be keen on parting with some for this gold coin.  We'll wait until they go have their pipe.  I'll let ya know when, yeah?  Oh, don't look so worried.  I'll walk down with ya and keep an eye on things from nearby to makes sure they aren't the unsavory types.  Me magical friend over there will watch from this window.  If they touch ya, he could melt em from here, I promise ya that."  Cuss winks again.

[Persuasion +6]
13  Damn!

[Reminder:  Pelegar!]

[Cuss wants to convince her to be an unknowing distraction for him.  He's going to follow her down and across the street.  When she walks over to them, he is going to try to slip through the gate.  Cuss tips her the extra gold for 5 total.  If she agrees to go, then he will give her another 2 gold, one for them and one for her troubles.]

"I'll come get ya when the time is right, yeah?"  Cuss dismisses her and helps himself to some of the exotic herb tea, smiling when he smells of the steam from the rim of his hot cup.  He then looks to the iron gate across the street, and takes a sip.  

Cuss then takes the time to explain to Shorjahl and Kellar.  He keeps his voice low and discrete.  "Seems that our missing friend has a half-brother.  Those two have eyes on em."  Cuss thrust his chin to motion down across the street.  "Might be some hoodlums he ran with.  Might be guards.  Might be Lanterns.  Be that as it may, I'm going to slip into his apartment with her distraction.  Gonna need ya help, no?  Shorjahl, can ya keep an eye on em from here when we go over?  If they see me, use the fist to let me know, or just shoot them, yeah?"  Cuss giggles.

Cuss breaks his stare across the street to look at Kellar.  "Best I be sneaking up there alone, though.  If he's holed up inside, I doan wanna be scaring him more than need be.  Might be ya could come down and sip ya tea across the street, yeah?  Close enough ya could run over if there is trouble.  Orbaugh could keep a watch from closer, no?"

Cuss shrugs and looks back across the street.  "An iffen I find the demon or worse in there, I can be using the fist to give ya me last words, yeah?  Heh."  Cuss sips his tea and watches the thugs, waiting for the right moment to move.

=====
XP updated to here


Last edited by Custer Thickett on Thu Apr 09, 2015 1:53 pm; edited 4 times in total (Reason for editing : xp maths)
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Re: Chapter Three

Post  DiceMaster on Thu Apr 09, 2015 1:14 pm

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Re: Chapter Three

Post  Kellar on Thu Apr 09, 2015 4:11 pm

Kellar looked at Little One and responded, I'm not what you'd call inconspicuous.  Look at me, he said as he tapped on his blue arm.

No matter. Orbaugh and I will circle the block and he'll scamper up to the roof of the house next door and provide visual for me as I walk back toward the front of the block, he said.

Let me see here, he said as he removed the kraken's fist and put it around his own neck. Okay, Orbaugh will share his vision with me and I'll relay to you via the pendant. I'd imagine it won't be a problem since we're in close proximity, he questioned as he fiddled with it until he could focus on Custer and send a brief mental message: You're short, for a Hin.

Actions:
Kellar and Orbaugh will leave the café when the time is right. Orbaugh will scamper to the neighboring house's roof and observe the two guards out front.

Kellar will circle the block and relay information to Custer and will come back toward the café and order food to go.

Orbaugh-Stealth roll= 14+4= 18; success?
Kellar- Stealth roll= 9+2=  11; casual enough?


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Re: Chapter Three

Post  DiceMaster on Thu Apr 09, 2015 4:11 pm

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Re: Chapter Three

Post  Shorjahl on Thu Apr 09, 2015 7:08 pm

Shorjahl nodded and smiled to Cuss and Kellar as they left, staying and drinking his coffee, watching the two suspicious men. In truth, he was just as dangerous from afar, within this coffee house, as he was out investigating strange fighters around the block. He'd wait for a response from his friends, and then spring into action if not. In truth, he was enjoying this time off away from cloaks, daggers, and demons.

-------------

Chillin.
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Re: Chapter Three

Post  Dwan Bolduum on Thu Apr 09, 2015 8:12 pm

Dwan took Kellar's orders with pleasure, and made his way to the quartermaster to discuss the acquisition of the honey.  At the quartermaster's Dwan pulled out the coin purse with the money for they honey and found that it has been sliced; he had maybe half of money he needed for the honey.  Damn street rats and their nimble fingers.  The sooner we are out of this damn city the better.

It took a lot of convincing but Dwan was able to get Axolot to agree to part with her honey in return of Dwan giving her some tips on caring for her bees and making a better living environment that promotes a higher honey yield.  

This keeps Dwan busy for a majority of the week.  

===========================================

(At the cafe)

Dwan drinks his mead slowly at the table, listening in as Custer goes over his plan to gather information.

Best I be sneaking up there alone, though.  If he's holed up inside, I doan wanna be scaring him more than need be.  

No, I'll be coming with you Custer. Don't worry I'll do my best to stay out of sight. Those guards won't even pay me no mind.

Dwan finishes his tankard and disappears off towards the stairs in the Cafe.  Dwan dips under the stairs and into the supplies for the store.  The owner looks towards the stairs and hurries over,  Hey you! What do you think you're doing back their you smelly old....  huh?  He looks around confused and closely inspects the area once more.  

A mangy black cat slips out from behind one of the barrels and races across the floor back towards the table.  It hops on Custer's shoulder and stares into his eyes.  

Gods above, I hope he knows its me. He has proven a deadly shot with that crossbow.

Dwan will stay perched on Custer's shoulder as he makes his way out towards the two. As they get closer, Dwan will hop off of the halfling and scale the tree, watching and listening from above.  

**Perception roll to see if there is anything that Dwan can see or hear from Cecil's apartment, once he has scaled the tree.**
16+3=19

=================================

Dwan turns into a cat and goes with Custer as backup.

While Custer talks with the two guards/lookouts Dwan scales the tree and sees if he can find anything of use while looking towards Cecil's apartment.


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Re: Chapter Three

Post  Dwan Bolduum on Thu Apr 09, 2015 8:13 pm

damn it dice roll
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Re: Chapter Three

Post  DiceMaster on Thu Apr 09, 2015 8:13 pm

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Re: Chapter Three

Post  Custer Thickett on Thu Apr 09, 2015 8:26 pm

[OOC: Here is my stealth roll to get up to the apartment without being seen.  Rolling with possible advantage if the server girl, or the cat, help as a distraction. I'd add more RP, but I'm swamped at work right now.]
23


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Re: Chapter Three

Post  DiceMaster on Thu Apr 09, 2015 8:26 pm

The member 'Custer Thickett' has done the following action : Dice Roller

'D20' : 16, 5

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Re: Chapter Three

Post  Ao on Fri Apr 10, 2015 10:45 am

Shorjahl, Artimus and Osvald watch as Kellar disappears out into the street, rounding the corner in surveillance of the building.

The serving girl stares at Custer, but upon seeing the gold coin her lips curl into a smile and she nods emphatically.

“I don’t know them, but…sure, little lord. Why not?” she says, eyeing the coins.

Custer follows her to the door, the feline Dwan padding behind them carefully.

[…]

A chill night wind prickles your skin, Custer, as you walk out into the street. The serving girl is babbling about something or other, making nervous talk, as unconsciously she unbuttons the top of her blouse. That will work nicely, as a distraction.

The girl walks down the cobbles, and you can see the two men hanging under the tree puffing away on their pipe.

They startle a bit, as the girl draws near, but seeing her warm smile they welcome her heartily into their circle of haze.

But Custer and Dwan cannot hear their conversation, for they have already slipped through the gate of the apartment building, and are dashing up the stairs…

[…]

Orbaugh chitters, staring in the window of the apartment. His nose frosts the glass repeatedly as the little dragon breathes heavily, excited at his mission.

{{Master! I see! Young man, pacing the room! He has…a crossbow?}}

[…]

Custer twists the knob and slips into the apartment, Dwan silently following him inside.

The warmth of the room greets your cheeks, and you can see it is a modest apartment with rather fine furnishings.

Large, oak book cases line the walls of this small sitting room, with three large windows looking out onto the street beyond. The books look untouched, however. A small hearth crackles on the western wall, where an empty velvet sitting chair is angled toward the flames.

Custer moves silently into the shadows, shutting the door behind him.

A young man with ragged-cut brown hair is pacing the room, staring out the window into the street. He holds a crossbow in his hand, and is fidgeting madly with it. He stops, pacing a few steps to the right, still staring into the street.

He scratches his head compulsively, making an about face and screaming in horror as he sees Custer.

“GHAAAAAGH!” he shouts, firing off the crossbow very poorly, the bolt embedding itself in the ceiling.

“NO! NO!” he screams again, tears streaming down his face. He drops the crossbow, falling to his knees.

“Please, assassin! Please! I’ve told Soren, I’ve already told him! I’ve no idea where my brother is. Please!”

Beyond the grovelling youth, Dwan can see Orbaugh waddling along the window sill. The pseudo dragon pokes at a window panel, which gives way. Comically, the tiny dragon falls through awkwardly, landing on the floor with a crash.

===========================

Ok Custer + Dwan, there’s your situation. Kellar, you can act through Orbaugh this round.

Shorjahl, Artimus, and Osvald…you can see the guards are enamoured with the girl. I’ll allow you to sneak in also, if you want to participate here, on account of Custer’s sweet little plan here.

There will be another post from me this evening, so get your posts up lads!

EXP: +20 to shorj, kell, cuss and dwan
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Re: Chapter Three

Post  Custer Thickett on Fri Apr 10, 2015 2:49 pm

Custer brings a finger to his lips to signal silence.  "Shhh."  He uses his other hand to pull his symbol of Waukeen away from his chest, holding it forward for Cecil to see.  "I'm not a Lateran.  Waukeen, our Golden Lady, brought me to ya.  I need ya help, but not near about like you need mine, seems like.  Been praying for help, no?"  

Cuss strides to the window, and carefully peaks around the seal to see if the breaking glass and yell from Cecil alerted the purple pipe smokers outside.  He ask Cecil, "Are those two house guards, Arrows, or some of Soren's lot?"

Cuss turns to Cecil as he answers, and frowns.  Cuss palms the Kraken's Fist in one hand, listening for Kellar's assessment of an alternate path for escape.  Then he says to Cecil, "We should go.  I can put ya somewhere safe, where they can't find ya.  Then we'll talk about ya brother, yeah?"

====

Cuss would like to get Cecil out of the apartment and across the street.  He'll ask the group if we can stash him on board the Pistoles.  

Let me know if I need to roll persuasion.

Cuss would prefer to have another couple sips of tea, a truffle, and a pipe of purple smoke if she can still pull off getting it and the two thugs aren't alerted to all this.  

If the guards are coming up, Cuss will wait for them here behind the closed door.  I'm need a quick post to set up an ambush.
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Re: Chapter Three

Post  Dwan Bolduum on Fri Apr 10, 2015 9:19 pm

At the sound of the trigger clicking on the crossbow Dwan jumps off of Custer's back and sprints to the other side of Cecil to get a potential flank position.  Dwan waits a few moments before he sees Cecil crumple down to the floor in a weepy mess.

He's only a child caught up in a much larger game. Its sad to see how much his fear has crippled him.   Mew!

Dwan then hops up on the window sill to see if the guards have reacted to the boy's screaming.  As he sees the two very fondly enthralled by the bar maid a dark shape eclipses Dwan's vision and he is knocked back on to the floor in a leathery cyclone. His warrior instincts kick in and he hisses while batting at the mass with his paws a few times before he recognizes Orbaugh.  Oh. Sorry my friend.   He thinks towards the psudeodragon.

Dwan looks towards Custer expecting fully receive some kind of remark or look on his skittishness, but the halfling's hand is closed around the Kraken's Fist trinket and his attention is focused on sending out a message on if we should take the boy in for hiding.

Dwan composes himself and starts moving around the perimeter of the room trying to see if  his feline senses can detect any unwanted visitors approaching the room.   Dwan will focus mostly on smells but will keep his ears open as well.

*Perception w/ advantage for smell based rolls*
10+3=13


Last edited by Dwan Bolduum on Fri Apr 10, 2015 9:20 pm; edited 1 time in total (Reason for editing : Perception)
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Re: Chapter Three

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