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Dr._Bob
2005-12-11, 07:21 PM
Lissa

As the group settles down to wait, the gnome sighs and fingers her new holy symbol. *I can't put this off any more. *If I do, there's a good chance I'll end up like Sedryn. *She moves to a position where she can see everyone at once.

"All right, people. *I've got a spell to cast... and hopefully it'll shed some light on certain events." *Lissa's expression turns hard. *"I'm finishing what Sedryn started." *With that, she touches the medallion with one hand and begins chanting in Celestial. *"Baravar, reveal any evil within my sight!"


Lissa's eyes shine with determination as she casts her spell.

Her medallion glows faintly as her heart begins to fill with dread. There is evil, and it is nearby, very close.

As Lissa concentrates, she realizes that something is wrong. The images of her companions before her begin to blur and fade. At first, she thinks that her dancing lights are fading, but soon she realizes that it is her sight, not the illumination, that is failing.

Before she can get a fix on the evil aura, Lissa is blind. Her eyes stare sightlessly as she cries out in distress ...




OOC: Previously The Sea of Starry Night (http://www.giantitp.com/cgi-bin/yabb/YaBB.pl?board=play;action=display;num=1128003029;s tart=0). The OOC thread is here (http://www.giantitp.com/cgi-bin/yabb/YaBB.pl?board=play_ooc;action=display;num=11343433 75).

HempRope
2005-12-11, 07:49 PM
Achkby, Halfling Sorcerer

A cry shatters Achkby's comatose euphoria. A cry from a voice he knows well. Lissa

"Wha?! Wha? Lissa?"
He flounders into wakefullness, slow to come down from his otherworldly high into the nightmarish reality that has trapped him for so long.

What's happening? Where is she?

Phasm
2005-12-11, 09:15 PM
Lissa

"AAAAAAAUGH!" Lissa's head whips about from side to side, eyes staring off into space. "I can't see! There's evil, close by, but I can't see it! I can't see anything!" Her voice goes higher and higher with panic as she talks. "If some son of a fiend cast a blindness spell on me, so help me Baravar, that spellcaster will regret it once I can see again!" Lissa's hand is clenched tightly around the hilt of her rapier; her expression is a mixture of panic and anger.

I'm blind! How can I shoot if I'm blind? I can't even see to stab an enemy's weak spot! How am I supposed to pull my weight here if I CAN'T SEE?! Oh, Baravar, please let this wear off soon, or let one of the other casters be able to cure it!

Callos_DeTerran
2005-12-11, 09:15 PM
Callos

As he slide down to a stop at the bottom of the cliff he grinned and brushed the dirt off of his long purple shirt. A little rough but non too dangerous. When he heard the gnome's plan about detecting evil a relieved smile came to his face. Finally! Djital and I will be cleared off all charges and we can move on with this insane journey! A lopsided smile came to his face then as she began to cast but when she cried out he looked startled.

"Whats wrong gnome?"

Zeal
2005-12-11, 10:04 PM
Hajih, Human Ranger

Putting his hands out, Hajih approaches Lissa slowly "Lissa, its okay, I'm coming over, just sit down and it'll wear off eventually." Hajih starts to look very worried "I mean, it did with Sedryn...gods rest his soul."

King_of_GRiffins
2005-12-11, 11:04 PM
Elthan II

*Elthan, who until then had been sleeping up agaisnt a rock, shakes his head awake at Lissa screams.*

"Ughh, uh.. What in hells name is the screaming about, huh? I was having a most curious experiance when some squell ran through me."

Elthans snake takes its usuall place upon his right arm, slinking up and back to sleep after the shattering vibration.

bhdrake
2005-12-12, 02:42 AM
Lumpy, Half-Orc Warrior

Lumpy glances up from where he's slumped on his bedroll, propped up against his back and armor. He wasn't really sleeping anymore.. just trying not to move too much, sort of like a basking lizard (though the lizardman could probably do a better job of it).

With a growled sigh, the stout orc pushes himself up, loosely snagging the archer's sword as he comes to his feet. This he rests flat against his bared shoulder delicately, shuffling towards the commotion. He gives the scene a good looking over, glancing around for a threat. Finding nothing, and apparently not having bothered to listen very well, he growls irritably, "The Hell's all this yapping about? Some of us like ta rest in quiet, ya know."

runehawk
2005-12-12, 04:39 AM
Lizardkin Druid

The lizardman sits up with a start. Partly because of a shriek from Lissa, partly because Lumpy had stepped on the end of his tail when he grabbed his sword and moved. Dreams of summer were as distant as the sunlight was now.The throbbing in his tail fully bringing him back to the present. Rubbing a sore tail, Ssathiya blinks the sleep out of his eyes and stumbles towards Lissa with a glance to Sheyra. Contemplating kicking the orckin, Ssathiya instead promises himself to vent his wrath on whatever Balance-forsaken aberration disturbed his sleep. His stomach agrees with a few growls of its on.

OOC: Hungry Lizardfolk ARE difficult to reason with ;D

Dr._Bob
2005-12-12, 11:24 AM
Soon every member of the party is awakened. They gather about the distressed gnome, concerned.

Unlike Sedryn's collapse at the darkstone altar, Lissa's affliction does not appear to be temporary. She remains completely blind, and the blindness shows no signs of wearing off, even after several minutes.

King_of_GRiffins
2005-12-12, 01:29 PM
Elthan II

*After recieving a short explination during the minutes of wait, Elthan introduces his thoughts to the group.*
"This is not good. At most, if an aura is too powerfull for the caster, it would stun them for a few seconds and then thier back to normal, like Sedyn. Blindness is not a usuall symptom for this spell. Something else is the cause of this, but what?"

The only spells I know of only temporarily blind. This development is very disturbing...

Phasm
2005-12-12, 01:53 PM
Lissa

Lissa is now looking more scared than angry, although she's still got her hand on her rapier. "You mean I could stay this way?! No, there has to be something we can do! Can't somebody dispel magic or something?" She shivers, drawing her cloak closer around her. "And, um, while this lasts... if anyone's going to come up next to me, for the love of the gods please say something! After what happened to Sedryn, and now this, I think it's safe to say that somebody has it in for clerics. And I'm vulnerable. So if I hear anyone near me who doesn't announce themselves, I'm going to assume I'm being attacked and react accordingly."

King_of_GRiffins
2005-12-12, 04:04 PM
Elthan II

"Well, the key-word here is may, depending on either mundane or magical means where used to blind you. If magical, it won't be too hard to find a dispel magic somewhere, but if it was some alchemical substance, I won't expect there to be much hope, but knowing Sethra, its probally magical means which caused this.
Tell me, while you where casting did you hear or see anything strange from anyone or anywhere? Did anyone else?"

Erikkin
2005-12-12, 04:09 PM
Fizahn:

Fizahn is obviously concerned about Lissa's blindness. He warily eyes each of the group. Who could produce such an evil aura. I have to find out! Once I have an idea, I'll act upon it, and once I have proof, he'll be dead. Wait... When Achkby was casting detect magic on all of us, no one checked him... I wonder... Fizahn sidles over to Achkby as everyone confers with Lissa. He quickly slips his hand into any pocket Achkby has, looking for a gem or such.

OOC: Sleight of Hand 21(13+8)

Callos_DeTerran
2005-12-12, 04:16 PM
Calllos

"If this blindness is magical then...we have a problem. I know of a spell that blinds and it does it permenatly. I'm sorry gnome. Unless we can pay for someone to break this enchantment then I'm afraid this is permenat."

There was a look of sympathy on Callos's face as he told the gnome this. Being in the Underdark where one couldn't see in the darkness was bad enough. Knowing you couldn't see at all had to be worse.

"If..if you need help getting around or anything. I would be glad to help you."

HempRope
2005-12-12, 04:32 PM
Achkby, Halfling Sorcerer

Idiot! Dammit, why did he have to mention that?!

Achkby lashes out and kicks Callos in the leg. He makes a sharp gesture of opening his palms upwards, plainly asking 'why did you have to go and do that?'

"I've heard of recovery, Lissa. I'm sure we'll find some way to fix this once we're out of here."
Wait... that could be a while from now.
"Or maybe even sooner."

He starts to approach her, but eyes her rapier warily.
"It's me..." he says, placing a hand on her shoulder.

Poor girl. The intermittent darkness has been bad enough. I have no idea what caused it...

Elmorwen
2005-12-12, 05:05 PM
Sheyra

It's just one thing after another, isn't it... Sheyra thinks, looking rather upset by this recent development. "Just so you know, Lissa," the young monk begins, "The offer to carry you still stands. If it's not too insulting or anything."

King_of_GRiffins
2005-12-12, 05:40 PM
Elthan II

*Backing up from the rest of the group.*

"Honestly, do you have to worry her to death like that? Magic is as permanent as a stain. It's there until you can wash it out. With this most recent turn of events, I want to do another detection search. We've had the addition of a few more members and I think it would be best to check them out as well."

(OOC: Will ask everyone to line up, and then cast Detect Magic)

bhdrake
2005-12-12, 06:02 PM
Lumpy

Even the dour orc's expression conveys sympathy for the poor blinded gnome; he'd learned to appreciate the predicament since coming down here, magical darkness being the first time his exceptional vision had ever failed him. Lumpy holds his tongue otherwise, accentuating his silence by thunking the flat of the sword against his shoulder absently. This was all beyond his ken anyway, magic and priests, and all the cloak and dagger stuff. Sure, he was smart enough to understand the general concepts, but he held no illusion about his ability to come up with a solution before someone more specialized would.

He shrugs at Elthan's instructions, "Do what ya gotta, if ya think ya'll find something."

Lousy Underdark.. There's always something going wrong..

Callos_DeTerran
2005-12-12, 06:13 PM
Callos

"I wasn't trying to worry her, I merely spoke the truth. Also..after the elf is done I think I have my own way of searching out what happened. When the elf is finished I'll do my own search. That is if Djital will keep an eye out for me while I do."

Still the mage did as one of the twins asked and got in line next to the half-orc. Blinking a little he turned to look at Lumpy and he blinked.

"Er...Hi there."

The_King_of_Durf
2005-12-12, 06:39 PM
Darius

Darius has been sitting silent throughtout the exchange, he gets up to be searched. "Damn... whenever we get close to our goal something bad always seems to happen."

((Sorry I haven't been posting frequently, I bought World of Warcraft on Friday, it's kind of addicting.))

runehawk
2005-12-12, 06:47 PM
Lizardkin Druid

With a cold glare at everyone he's suspicious of, the lizardman shuffles into line. Even after assimilating all the facts, he could not understand what was going on. He merely knew that shamans who tried to look at the nature of things end up hurt. Trusting the witch to explain more , he stands beside her and engages her in low conversation. Linda in her kind manner explains slowly to the lizardman about good and evil and what was going on.

Phasm
2005-12-12, 07:18 PM
Lissa

Lissa bites her lip as she hears that the blindness could be permanent. Now she's definitely looking scared. She lets out a shuddering sigh and leans her head on Achkby's shoulder. "Well... we can't see too well in the Underdark anyway, right? And we're going to Telflamm; that's a fairly big city from what I hear. There has to be someone there who can take this spell off. I've got some magic items I could sell or maybe trade to pay for it." Lissa turns toward Sheyra's voice, evidently able to get an approximate location by sound. Her brown eyes are staring somewhere off to Sheyra's left, though. "Thanks for the offer, Sheyra. If we get into another situation like with the ooze, I'll take you up on it, but for now I'd kind of prefer to keep my feet on the ground." And not be any more of a burden than I already am.

Once Elthan announces that he's going to detect magic, Lissa lets Achkby guide her to a place in line. She feels around her belt for her pouch, then digs around inside until she comes up with something small and hard. Displaying the object to the group, she asks, "Is this a small green gem? I think so, but it's kind of hard to tell by touch. I managed to pick it up from the stuff around that undead thing's throne while we were running. I've been meaning to ask someone whether or not this thing is magical anyway." Lissa thinks for a moment. "As for what I have that I know is magical... um, there's my handy haversack, my cloak, several scrolls inside the haversack, and I think that's it. Unless Thokk's brooch is magic."

Frojoe21
2005-12-12, 07:23 PM
Aeroz

"You would think being the son of a mage, I would be packing a little more magic heat, but all I have is a few potions, thokk's sword, Sedryn's holy symbol and mace, and I beleive Lumpy needs to give my bracelet back..." Aeroz comments as the spell scans him.

"Don't worry Lissa. Remember when I got turned to stone? We got that fixed didn't we? And then there was this other time I was polymorphed into a...bad memories deserve to stay buried..."

Zeal
2005-12-12, 08:04 PM
Hajih, Human Ranger

Hajih turns to Trinark "Drow, you can fix poison. What about blindness? either mundane or magical."

bhdrake
2005-12-12, 08:06 PM
Lumpy

Lumpy half-turns to Callos, looking up (for the short orc does in fact have to tilt his head back) to make eye contact with him. His jaw gapes a bit, baring his fangs with a throaty growl, "Don't push yer luck."

For a moment, he looks like he's thinking of something more to add, but his attention is diverted by Aeroz's comment, "I ain't even got it anymore, someone else used it on the cliff. Far as I know, I ain't got a damned bit'a magic on me."

Dr._Bob
2005-12-12, 08:27 PM
Linda moves closer (in a non-threatening way) to Lissa to offer her sympathies. "You are always welcome to lean on my arm or staff until you get your sight back," she whispers gently.

[hr]
The two Elthans stand facing the party, their arms crossed suspiciously. The rest of the party members stand shoulder to shoulder, meekly allowing themselves to be scanned for magic items.

Aeroz is carrying a variety of potions and Thokk's magical sword. Sheyra has a few potions and a magic ring. Achkby's wand, potions, and scrolls are magic of course. Lissa's bag is magical, as is the brooch she took from Thokk. Her green gem appears to be valuable, but non-magical.

Lumpy is surprised to find out that he is radiating magic, then he remembers Thokk's amulet around his neck, which radiates faint transmutation magic. Darius' bow is magical of course, and he carries a magic potion. Linda's ring and Trinark's newly found sword are magical.

Fizahn's cloak is magical, but there is an unexplained faint aura of conjuration emanating from his closed hand.

Only the lizardman, Hajih, Callos, and Djital are completely free of magical auras.

Muzzleflash
2005-12-12, 09:36 PM
Djital

"You know I didn't... listen, I meant useless against the ooze. There's no such thing as a useless spell."

He sheepishly avoids looking at the cliff face and the rope, and rubs absentmindedly at his black eye as the Elthans scan for magical auras. He is noticeably silent and withdrawn after Lissa goes blind, lost in his own thoughts. When he finally speaks, it is markedly different from the verbose style he adopted when arguing for his life and escaping his bonds.

"I've only done a sea journey twice in my life. First time out, the ship scraped a reef and filled with water. Five of us were in the dinghy I got into, and one drank seawater and went mad. He tried to overturn the boat, and we killed him.

Because of that we had just enough water to make land.

You've got a madman in your boat."

He clears his throat.

"Worse, actually."

HempRope
2005-12-12, 10:21 PM
Achkby, Halfling Sorcerer

"I think, to be thorough, I ought to scan you two again, as well," Achkby says to the twins. "Don't take it personally, but from one arcanist to two others, I think it needs to be done."

With their permission, I will use Detect Magic on them. If they refuse, I open the floor for debate ;)

King_of_GRiffins
2005-12-13, 09:44 AM
Elthan II

"Well Lissa, I'm sorry to say, but that gem is not magical. It's just an ordinary valuable ornate gem."

"As for being searched myself I have no objection, but I would like to know what object it is that is in Fizahns hand."

He didn't have anything like that last time. Where did he get it, but much more what is it?

Dr._Bob
2005-12-13, 11:07 AM
The Elthans submit to Achkby's scan with a shrug. They have multiple protective items but nothing suspicious. The Elthan clone is carrying the coins of illusion, the bracelet of levitation, and his head is orbited by an ioun stone - otherwise, the two Elthans have identical dress and gear.

[hr]
Fizahn has no choice but to open his hand. A plain silver ring lies in his palm.

Callos_DeTerran
2005-12-13, 11:24 AM
Callos

Once the two Elthan's had completed their search Callos took a step back and to the right so that Djital was mostly in front of him. Trying to stand in a position so that he could see all of them at once he said softly.

"I would greatly appriceate it if all of you could remain where you are standing and not to resist this spell."

At that the brown haired mage began to cast under his breath, hand motions subtle and discreet before his eyes took on a silverish tone.

((DR, going to cast detect thoughts then start readin' minds. Don't mean to make life harder for you DR))

Dr._Bob
2005-12-13, 01:52 PM
OOC: I would like each player to secretly contact me by PM indicating whether your character chooses to open their mind to Callos' probe or whether they choose to keep their thoughts to themselves. If you choose to resist, please make a Will save and let me know the result secretly.

Did I mention that the decision and roll should be secret?

HempRope
2005-12-13, 04:04 PM
Achkby, Halfling Sorcerer

When Fizahn, open his hand, Achkby's shoots to his pocket.
"Hey!" he exclaims in surprise. "That's the ring I grabbed when we were running from the spiders!"

He pauses a moment, glaring at the gnome.
Did he really steal it from me?

"How did you get that?" he asks coldly. "Last I remember, it was safe in my pocket."

Muzzleflash
2005-12-13, 05:47 PM
Djital, disco-style meatshield

He nods back to Callos, drawing his short sword and looking toward the rest of the party with a raised eyebrow.

"Do not approach my friend unless you want me to think you are what harmed the gnome."

HempRope
2005-12-13, 06:46 PM
Achkby, Halfling Sorcerer

Don't even start on them. They have no right to come in here and just... just, try to 'expose' whoever's been killing us when they themselves were out for our blood just a little while ago. Sounding like they're so concerned for Lissa because she's blind... they abducted her from us themselves!

Calm down, now. Leave it for someone else. Finish this first.

Phasm
2005-12-13, 07:04 PM
Lissa

Lissa shrugs at Elthan's verdict, tucking the gem into her haversack. "Well, if it's valuable, then I can use it in Telflamm to help pay for a mage to unblind me."

She turns her head in the direction of Djital's voice; as with Sheyra, she's close but a bit off. Her expression is a bit annoyed. "I've got a name, human. I'm not even making you tall-folk remember the whole thing; just Lissa. It's not that hard." She leans back a bit against Achkby. "Is this okay, Achkby? It's a bit cold in here..."

Frojoe21
2005-12-13, 07:58 PM
Aeroz

Aeroz cooly places his hand on the hilt of his rapier. He keeps an eye on Callos and Djital
"Buddy, you're not one to be probing us with spells. I really don't care if either of you were driders, when you did what you did but as far as I'm concerned, the both of you are both suspects as well. It may be the same thing that killed Sedryn, it may not, but I think that if you are gonna go casting divination or scrying or whatever kinds of spells, you should be scanned with the exact same thing."

Aeroz begins to slide the dagger from his cuff into his hand, making sure no one knows.

[OOC: Sleight of Hand result 20 (9+skill bonus (11))]

The_King_of_Durf
2005-12-13, 08:04 PM
Darius

"You know, he's got a point there." Darius says as he looses him bow from his back with a sneer.

Hahahaha! Ahaha! Heh... hehe...

Callos_DeTerran
2005-12-13, 08:08 PM
Callos

"Hmph. I'll be more then happy too...if someone else can cast that spell. Can any of you?"

Muzzleflash
2005-12-13, 08:50 PM
Djital

An "I can't believe this is happening" look crosses his face, as he strokes the tip of his beard. He looks back and forth between Aeroz and Darius, shaking his head.

"Easy, men. The last thing we need to be doing is preparing to fight each other. This is out" - he punctuates his words with a small twist of the sword - "to protect Callos from retaliation. The.. Lissa was blinded, and I am sure that whatever did that will be just as fast to attack him. If any of you can divine the contents of my mind, I invite it freely."

He smiles, shrugging his shoulders in a gesture of acceptance. "If you have nothing to hide, why object? Something, or someone who has infiltrated your group would certainly not allow their mind to be looked in on, to the point of killing to prevent it. They would probably object, or ready their weapons.. just like two people in front of me."

After delivering that barb, his tone softens.

"Personally, I doubt that you two are behind anything. If Lissa can sense whether the evil is close or far, we could take a walk down the shore, then come back. Then we can approach this from more even ground."

Dr._Bob
2005-12-13, 09:38 PM
Callos can only scan about half of the party at a time. Djital keeps the others at bay while the necromancer concentrates on his detect thoughts spell.

Aeroz, Darius, Trinark, Lumpy, and the lizardman frown as they close their minds to Callos' mental probing. Callos tests their psyches for weaknesses, but finds no means of entry. Hajih and Lissa, on the other hand, raise no defenses, and their surface thoughts flood into Callos' consciousness ...

I don't like this, some one's out there.
No Ö some one's with us and that some one happens to be completely evil.
Why are they toying with us?
And most of all, what happened to Hero?

Hmm, I wonder if you can feel it when somebody's detecting your thoughts? I hate being a burden ... bad enough everyone had to come rescue me, and I don't care what they say, it was my fault Thokk died. But now I can't even pull my own weight! Oh, I hope this gets lifted soon ... mmm, Achkby's warm. Maybe not too soon. Men can't resist a damsel in distress ...

[hr]
While waiting to be scanned, Fizahn shrugs and hands Achkby the silver ring. "You ought to be more careful with your stuff."

HempRope
2005-12-13, 10:19 PM
Achkby, Halfling Sorcerer

Achkby take sthe ring, and with another cold look, stows it in a deeper pocket.

Then he turns to face the two new humans.
"'Ey. I'll agree with them. You two, albeit in a different 'form,' made more advances against Lissa than the rest of us put together. In fact, we made none. Now, you may be quite reformed, but the possibility remains that you're not. Then, besides that, I don't see how we can trust the verdict of two newcomers, anyway. Regardless of whether you gain any real knowledge, you could easily pinpoint any one of us as the 'culprit.' Perhaps to pass the blame from you, or perhaps for some other reason -- I certainly don't pretend to understand your motives. But if you do, I don't see how you can prove it. But I will not physically try to restrain you, because regardless of what you say afterwards, I put my trust in my friends to take my word over yours."
He is breathing hard, but makes no motion to stop the man from casting his spell.

They won't find anything. And they'd better not pretend they did.

Callos_DeTerran
2005-12-13, 11:27 PM
Callos, Frustrated Mind Prober

As he tested the mental fortress's of Aeroz, Darius, Lumpy, and the lizard man a vein bulged out on Callos's forehead as he tried to pierce into and seek out a culprit. After being repulsed he turned his spell towards Hajih and Lissa, barely even hearing what was going on around him. A relieved smile came to his face when he entered freely and he did his best to make his probe unrobustive. After hearing them though the human could only begin to chuckle weakly. Opening his eyes he blinked and shook his head.

"Well so far its a complete waste. I could only establish two people as "not it" from what I've already heard. That leaves three people left. The halfing who is determined to prove that I'm evil, Ackby is it? The other gnome. I don't know your name yet. The two elves still need checked and so does the two taller women. And Djital. Sorry friend but its only fair that I scan you too. I remember that you didn't have any magical abilities before we were changed but...the brooch changed many things. I need to make sure."

Closing his eyes he turned towards the last three and began to concentrate on his spell once more though now other thoughts, his own, began to flit about in his head.

((OCC: Going to begin concentrating on the last 6. If I missed someone I'm sorry.))

Dr._Bob
2005-12-14, 12:12 AM
Callos severs his mental link with Lissa when her thoughts about Achkby begin turning a bit more carnal. Shuddering a bit, he turns his attention to the remaining members of the party. Elthan and Linda are inscrutable, but Fizahn leaves his mind open and Callos manages to force his way into Achkby's and Elthan's minds despite their attempts to resist him ...

Stupid! Stupid! Stupid! It's not like I had any proof that Achkby was the one who murdered that priest. What did I think I was going to find in his pocket, Sethra's fire opal? I wonder what that ring does anyway? Lissa sure seems to have taken a liking to him. Good thing I'm not the jealous type. Heh heh. At least I don't think I'm jealous. I mean, I'm definitely not jealous. I mean she's cute and all, but ... well, and anyway, she's waaay too old for him ...

They won't find anything. *And they'd better not pretend they did. The nerve of them! Trying to work with us after trying to kill us, saying they were 'transformed!' Hmph. They may well have been. But until they can prove themselves, I don't trust them.

And now they're getting all pretentious about how they're gonna expose the one of us who's committing all of these crimes. I think it ten thousand times more likely they blinded Lissa than any of us did! And even if they do find out ... what good will it do them? They can't prove what they hear. And I, for one, am not going to listen to a smidgen of their 'verdict,' once they're done.

Why in the nine hells do they think they have any authority? Umm. There are only nine hells, right? One, two, three, four ... right, nine.

Well, obviously someone cast a blindness spell on that poor gnome, but who? I didn't hear anything when she went blind, so the spell must have been silenced or produced from some sort of magic item. I suppose that it could have been this Callos person (I hope he isn't reading these thoughts right now), but there's no chance that Sethra possessed him, is there? He wasn't with us when that cleric died, at least not in human form ...

King_of_GRiffins
2005-12-14, 12:52 AM
Elthan II

*Elthan II looks quite worried. His eyes are closed and his hand is on his head.*
Detection of magic and moral is one thing, but detection of ones thoughts is an invasion of privacy I cannot abide by. Our thoughts, our personal individualities, do these mean nothing?
If I speak up agianst it, I would be announced as the cause of these troubles and I lose the group. If I stay silent, I forever fear the invasion of my mind and lose myself.
Whoever invented this spell did not think much on its ramifications, did he?
"*Sigh*"
*Elthan now forces himself to become calmer, trying to distract his mind.*
One, ten, eleven, one-hundred, hundred one, hundred ten...

runehawk
2005-12-14, 02:12 AM
Lizardkin Druid

The lizardkin had not understood what the new human mage meant to do but immediately recognised the mental probing fro what it was. Determined to not let his mind be touched by something alien, he concentrates and closes it. To his own surprse he did not grow angry at the attempt, the possibility of flushing Sethra out was probably important enough to allow the pinkskin his temerity

He studied the others, looking for signs of discomfort. Was it Sethra or was it something else? Fond as he had grown of the others, if there was a chance to kill Sethra here, in the middle of nowhere, sacrificing all for the sake of the tribe, should he not take it?

The lizardman frowned at the disturbing probability and stares at the dark waters n the shoreline deep in thought.

Callos_DeTerran
2005-12-14, 07:55 AM
Callos

Once the thoughts from Lissa's mind turned carnal he severed the link as fast as he could and turned to remaining people. When two more people once again turned out to be strong enough to resist him he sighed in a half-hearted way before turning to Ackby, Fizahn, and the Elthans. Surprised at the magnitude of thoughts there he took a long moment or two shifting through them for any hints, once more trying to make the probe unrobustive. Well there were the accusations he knew would be there...questions if they thought he did it...and then the thoughts of the other gnome who he had no name to yet.

"I feel like I'm in a play in Waterdeep. Figured that spell might have a chance of gleaning out who blinded Lissa but I got nothing! But I've got a good question...whos Hero and Sethra?"

Elmorwen
2005-12-14, 12:18 PM
Sheyra

Sheyra slumps down against a rock, making no attempt to resist the mental probing. She glares at Callos anyway, not liking that he's doing this but not seeing any better way.

Gods, we've all turned against each other, she thinks, Not that that's anything new. I really hope we get out of here soon, before anyone else dies. Heh, that was really pessimistic. Not like me at all. Wow, I am really bored. Not that I'd rather be attacked again. I just wish the damned ferry would show up already.

bhdrake
2005-12-14, 07:25 PM
Lumpy

Lumpy growls softly as Callos attempts to probe his mind, brow furrowing as he tries to beat off the magic. Though he is honestly unsure of his success or failure, he offers the mage a confident sneer, one lip curling up to reveal yellowed fangs.

"Ya didn't honestly expect that ta work, did ya? Someone's thoughts are their own, and no one wants someone else mucking around in them."

The surly orc shrugs, "We just do it like we did before. Split up inta big shifts when we sleep, so no one gets an easy shot, mebbe three people per shift. That would'a worked just fine.." He glares at Callos and Djital, "if it weren't fer ya and yer spider buddies."

Lumpy's little tirade draws to an anticlimactic end as his stomach begins to growl audibly. He glances down, grumbling, turning to shuffle back towards his pack and other things.

Dr._Bob
2005-12-14, 07:55 PM
More hours pass in darkness (as light would only attract unwanted attention) as the party hides behind the rocks. The atmosphere is tense and no one is in a good mood after being probed and scanned by the Elthans and Callos. Each party member eyes the others suspiciously. Is he the one? Is she the one? ... Am I the one? No one can be sure.

Few of you are willing to close your eyes even for a moment, knowing that evil may be lurking nearby, perhaps only feet away. Lissa remains blind. Every minute that passes diminishes her small hope that the blindness might wear off on its own.

[hr]
After what seems like an eternity, Lumpy hisses and points out a distant light source. A boat is moving toward the shore from across the Glimmersea. It will probably arrive within a half hour ...

Zeal
2005-12-14, 08:07 PM
Hajih, Human Ranger

"Hero...wow, you really can read my thoughts! Hero is my hawk."
Hajih sits down cross-legged with his eyes closed and waits for the ferry.

The_King_of_Durf
2005-12-14, 08:09 PM
Darius

"Splendid! Let's head down and wait by the dock, we don't want them to pass us by!"

HempRope
2005-12-14, 09:18 PM
Achkby, Halfling Sorcerer

Achkby stands and peers around their rock. "Er... maybe we should wait and see if someone gets off first. Wouldn't want to rush out onto the jetty and find a host of Drow, now, would we? Maybe just one person should go hold the boat..."

The_King_of_Durf
2005-12-15, 07:44 AM
Darius

"Well that's why we should all go down there. Whatever is sailing a boat through the Underdark is probably not good at all, but together we can take out a score or so of Drow!"

runehawk
2005-12-15, 09:21 AM
Lizardkin Druid

The reptilian scratches the sand with his tail as his face takes on an expression of marked annoyance. Faced with a situation, the pinkskins again resorted to their usual arguing instead of decisive action. Normally, he'd have been used to their bickering, on occasion even impressed with some of the things they had come up with but the hunger in his belly was dimming his usual patience.
His on instincts told him to stay hidden and watch the boat further.

He glanced lazily at Sheyra who was awake and listening to the discussion and again peered warily at the others for any signs of hostility. Linda was leaning on the same rock beside him and was dozing fitfully. She had been waking and dozing off, the fatigue and lack of rest of the last few hours wearing her down.

Yoric_Steele
2005-12-15, 09:34 AM
Trinark, Drow Cleric

Trinark finally breaks his silence and whispers from the darkness, "At least one of us should investigate the ferry. I think it should be whomever can move the most quietly. For all of us to approach at once would be foolish, there are may things in the Underdark that could be provoked by the approach of a group this size."

He then moves over to examine Lissa, whispering her name as he approaches so as not to alarm her.

Elmorwen
2005-12-15, 12:40 PM
Sheyra

"In that case, I nominate Fizahn. He's good at that sort of thing, and he can see better than I can down here," Sheyra says, playing with a rock she found by her foot.

Phasm
2005-12-15, 12:49 PM
Lissa

Lissa has been dozing lightly, curled up with her back against one of the rocks of the quay. At Trinark's approach, her blind eyes open and her head comes up. She tenses for a moment, then relaxes a bit as the drow identifies himself. "Oh, hi Trinark." The gnome yawns, covering her mouth with a hand. "What is it? Is the boat here yet?"

Erikkin
2005-12-15, 02:46 PM
Fizahn:

"Sure, the short person is ALWAYS sneaky and has PERFECT eyesight, stupid stereotyping humans. Anyway, I hope you know that I can't actually see in the dark. That's Lumpy's job. I'm sure he could get a good look at whoever's on that boat if he would just take off his armor. Stupid stereotypical half-orcs. However, I will go and check if I can see anything." Fizahn takes off towards the docks moving slowly and treading so lightly that he is barely audible.

OOC: Move silently 25 (15+10) Make any other rolls you need to DR. Move silently +10 Spot -1 Listen +1 Hide +13

The_King_of_Durf
2005-12-15, 04:48 PM
Darius

"I'm watching your back, holler if you need any help." Darius says. He will grab an everburning torch and follow Fizahn, staying about 65 feet away. When Fizahn reaches the dock he will wait about 65 feet away, ready to come running to aid the short little humanoid.

bhdrake
2005-12-15, 05:03 PM
Lumpy

Lumpy is, in fact, already armored, having started peicing it on the moment he'd laid eyes on the boat, "The armor comes off AFTER we know they ain't gonna shoot us, not before. 'Sides, if it's drow, it won't make much difference. I've crossed enough ta know they out-see even me down here."

The burly orc adjusts his pack, making sure it's all secure, and that his borrowed sword and bow are both accessible. He glances over at Lissa again casually. Or it would have been casual, if he hadn't been doing it fairly regularily for the past few hours. He was releived to see the drow with her, which briefly struck him as odd, but he had to admit that the dark elf seemed to be on the level. Certainly he warranted at least as much trust as most of the others. More than most, actually. He scowls a bit, habitually, turning away quickly to glare at Darius, "Keep that damned torch covered!"

Callos_DeTerran
2005-12-15, 05:39 PM
Callos

"..mhmmmm nice juicy..." With a grumble Callos's eyes opened and he sat up abruptly. A long yawn emerged from his gaping mouth before he went stone still. Carefully he looked around at the way all of the others were staring at...well something and turned to look in the same direction. Oh the ferry is here. Almost here that is. I wonder why everyone is getting all tense.

Shaking his head he crawled on his hands towards Lissa and said his name softly.

"Lissa..I asked before and no one answered. I figure I'll ask someone who is at least amiable. Who is Sethra?"

Yoric_Steele
2005-12-15, 06:19 PM
Trinark, Drow Cleric

Trinark tenses visibly as Callos approaches Lissa. His hand drops to the hilt of his longsword, as he watches every move he makes. Clearly he is ready to act.

Phasm
2005-12-15, 06:38 PM
Lissa

Again, the blind gnome tenses up as she hears Callos approach, and relaxes (mostly) as he identifies himself. Lissa's nerves are clearly on high alert. At his question, she shrugs slightly. "To tell you the truth, I don't know that much about Sethra. You might be better off asking Linda, Fizahn, one of the Elthans, or the druid... um, maybe not the druid. He doesn't seem too keen on you and Djital. Can't imagine why." She smiles sardonically.

"Anyway, from what I've gathered, Sethra is a very powerful, totally evil necromancer who's somehow managing to survive outside his body. I'm not sure if he has a body somewhere or what. He seems to enjoy playing mental hopscotch, jumping around from one person's head to another and making them do evil things when nobody's watching." Lissa sighs, her voice turning sad. "We're pretty sure that's how Sedryn, a cleric of Lathander who came down here with us, died. We found a set of interlocking caves that would give everyone a bit of privacy, and fools that we were, we took it. We'd just rescued Trinark, and the party was kind of split on whether or not to trust a drow." She turns to the last place she heard Trinark. "No offense, Trinark, but at the time you were a stranger." Turning back in Callos' direction, Lissa continues. "So Sedryn said that he'd prepare and cast detect evil when we woke up to settle the issue." She swallows hard. "When we woke up, Sedryn was dead. Someone had hit him in the head with a rock during the night, despite the fact that we had two-person watches set all night long. Everyone liked Sedryn; nobody had a reason to kill him... unless they didn't want to be exposed as evil. Again, ask Linda or an Elthan; one of them mentioned an entire adventuring group that killed each other because Sethra was possessing them. The last guy alive ended up killing himself." Lissa's expression turns thoughtful. "I wonder why Sethra didn't just blind Sedryn the way he did me? Maybe Sedryn would have been more resistant to the spell, since he'd been serving Lathander practically his whole life."

Dr._Bob
2005-12-15, 08:43 PM
The light moves closer and closer until even the humans and halflings can see a black longboat moving slowly across the dark water. Stylized dragon heads are carved into the prow and sternposts so that, without looking for the wake, it is hard to tell whether the boat is coming or going.

A single lantern dangles from a wooden mast. There are no sails or oars. In fact, the boat has no visible means of propulsion. A cloaked figure stands amidships, hands clasped as if in prayer. The figure's head is bowed and hooded, and the shadow cast by the lantern makes it impossible to see who exactly the boatman (or boatwoman?) is. There are no passengers visible on the boat.

The boat slides silently up to the dock, scraping gently against it. The cloaked figure ties the longboat fore and aft to stone pilings, then slides a gangplank across to the dock ...

Elmorwen
2005-12-15, 09:20 PM
Sheyra

OOC: This is before the boat comes.

"Well, excuse me," Sheyra says to Fizahn, looking moderately annoyed."I just figured that since you're always the one who checks for traps, that you're more likely to have experience in scouting than most of us. We hired Lissa to help scout, but in case you haven't notice she's a bit incapacitated at the moment. And I am perfectly aware that you can't see in the dark, but last time I checked it wasn't completely dark in here due to the glowing fungus balls all over the ceiling, not to mention that the boat itself is giving off a light." She groans, closing her eyes and rubbing her forehead. "And it's not polite to insult people in languages they don't understand. I can tell you insulted someone by the tone of your voice, and I can only assume it was someone here right now. So either look or don't, but you don't have to pick a fight about it." She gets up, turns her back to the rest of the party, and slumps down again.

OOC: After the boat comes.

Finally, Sheyra thinks as she stands up. If we sat here another minute, I might have really lost my temper. She sighs. You're already losing your sanity, Sheyra. Just... try to think about something else. Like cookies. Think about cookies. Her stomach growls. "Damn, I'm hungry," Sheyra says, wondering if the others can hear her stomach growling.

The_King_of_Durf
2005-12-15, 10:28 PM
Darius

Before... "Lumpy, all the damn people who live here see in the dark! And I'll have that sword back before you start lecturing me." Darius says with a sneer, heading off towards Fizahn.

Now... "This is... ominous, at best. Can you see his face?" Darius says to Fizahn. "Think it's time to say hello?"

Zeal
2005-12-15, 10:38 PM
Hajih, Human Ranger

"Perhaps we should have one of us approach the ferryman and inquire about crossing while the rest of us sneak up in case it is...uncooperative." Hajih smiles "I volunteer Lumpy for the job, his heavy armour would make too much noise while hiding."

Muzzleflash
2005-12-15, 11:32 PM
Djital

Content to remain hidden in the shadows for the moment, he nudges Callos and points unnecessarily toward the figure on the boat.

"If no one starts dying, how about we go make ourselves known? We better not split up, ever, after what I just heard her tell you. Actually... He turns to Lissa and starts to unconsciously gesture with his hand as he speaks, then drops it to his side. "This 'Sethra'.. would there be any chance, however slim, that he is connected or was behind what hit us in the past? I've got plenty of revenge bottled up and nowhere to channel it, and I doubt I'm speaking only for myself here."

As the figure ties off the boat, either in preperation to disembark or to take on passengers, he leans forward with interest. "S'pose when we get to a trading post or civilisation, we'll have some shopping to do, eh? Clothes, armor, parchment for both of us, and whoever owns the eatery near where we all end up is gonna be having a lucky day. Hopefully there's some way to get some money on the way, because I want a damn long list of things." Laying back against a rock, he idly scratches a list on his forearm with a fingernail, watching the figure on the boat and the party members' reactions to it.

Phasm
2005-12-16, 12:05 AM
Lissa

Lissa listens to the conversation around her, her expression increasingly frustrated. I think I hear something in the water... or is that just waves on the rocks? Finally she bursts out, "Hello, I can't see! Will somebody please describe what's going on? Is there a boat here or what?"

Muzzleflash
2005-12-16, 12:31 AM
Djital

"No one told you? There's been a longboat pulling up to the dock for a while, it's tied up now. That's the ferryman we've been talking about, a dramatically lit cloaked humanoid looking figure with no companions that I can see. The boat looks black- although everything does. Really nice engraving on the fore and aft sections, looks like dragon heads. I'm assuming either the boat or the ferryman is magically powerful, because they've been cruising around without oars and the mast has no sail. Is that descriptive enough?"

After Hajih nominates Lumpy, Djital slips his sword down the outer side of his right thigh, under the pants, and hooks the hilt in place, where it is less noticeable and also unlikely to twist about and cause harm to his body. Nodding to Callos, "Shall we go down and inquire about the fare?"

bhdrake
2005-12-16, 01:13 AM
Lumpy

The orc squints, making out the features of the approaching boat, the odd figure, and presumably magical propulsion. He growls with a sour scowl, "Figures. A normal boat, with a normal boatman would'a just been too much ta ask fer. Hells, I give up. Just be ready ta come along."

He steps up to Trinark for a moment, rumbling softly in undercommon, "Make sure she gets along alright.," before heading down the pier, his heavy footfalls audible and broad form easily visible. As he nears, he calls out, sticking to undercommon.

"Hey! What's the fare?"

Dr._Bob
2005-12-16, 12:53 PM
A terse voice answers back in Undercommon, "How many? How far?"

The voice is gravelly and low, as if it hasn't been used much, but the words carry across the beach clearly.

HempRope
2005-12-16, 01:06 PM
Achkby, Halfling Sorcerer

Achkby walks quietly over to Lissa and the Drow. "It's me," he announces. "Fools. Dashing out there, shouting and waving their lights... anyway. Let's get ready to go on down there." He nods brusquely to Trinark, readying to guide Lissa down to the boat.

We had better be going down to the boat now. Don't know how fast she could run... might have to take Sheyra up on her offer.

Phasm
2005-12-16, 02:32 PM
Lissa

Lissa gets to her feet, locating her pack by touch and managing to strap it on pretty well. "Hi, Achkby. Thanks for the description of the boat, Djital. I swear, if I can ever channel enough of Baravar's power to cure blindness, I'm going to cure every blind person I meet who wants it! This is just ridiculous." She tentatively walks toward where she heard Achkby, then stops. "I need a cane or something... I've seen blind people using those. Hey, I know!" Lissa unbuckles her sheathed rapier from her belt and proceeds to use it to tap the ground in front of her as she's seen other blind people do. She smiles, the first real smile since she was blinded. "Oops, sorry... Achkby, right? I don't feel a shoe, and you're the only one who goes barefoot around here." Lissa's probing 'cane' had managed to find Achkby's foot. Fortunately, the rapier is still sheathed.

Muzzleflash
2005-12-16, 03:12 PM
Djital

"Right. Let's go meet 'Charon'."
He moves with the rest down to the dock. "I wonder if the sequins on these pants can pass for an obscure form of currency... or if passengers get complimentary bags of nuts."

Zeal
2005-12-16, 03:17 PM
Hajih, Human Ranger

Hajih begins to walk up to the ferryman "If sequins are a form of currency, somewhere, Iím rich."

The_King_of_Durf
2005-12-16, 04:53 PM
Darius

"Why doesn't anyone speak Common around here!?" Darius yells, going over to lean against a rock and sulk until someone tells him what to do.

bhdrake
2005-12-16, 06:02 PM
Lumpy

Lumpy grumbles as he counts mentally, "That is common down here, get used ta it. Surface common's a novelty language down here." He glances at Callos and Djita, as if considering whether or not to include them in the counts, scowling a bit. lHe clears his throat, calling out again,

"Hells.. Fifteen! Trying ta cross the 'Sea ta get beneath Telflamm on the surface, if ya got any idea where that is! Actually, I'll take anything that might lead us upwards, I ain't gonna be picky!"

He glances back to see if the others are coming along, motioning them to move up cautiously.

Dr._Bob
2005-12-16, 07:23 PM
Party members cautiously rise from behind the rocks and gingerly make their way across the beach, pebbles crunching underfoot.

The cloaked figure observes as the fifteen of you approach. His face remains hidden in shadow as he switches to Common.

"Explorers from the surface? You are a long way from home indeed."

He then switches back to Undercommon to address Lumpy. "Normally I would ask for three ..." He pauses, looking the party over. "But in this case, I think that one should suffice ..."

bhdrake
2005-12-16, 09:49 PM
Lumpy, who probably shouldn't be negotiating

Lumpy shifts, metal clinking on metal as the steel-plated orc adjusts his position, He switches tongues again, muttering in orcish rapidly, "Lousyunderdarkwherenothingssensible..", which inevitably trails off into cursing as orcish is wont to do. Inevitably, he straightens back out, bellowing again.

"Now, I'm not all up on the subtle nuances of the common here, so let me just make for sure.If you'd elaborate a bit, by 'one', you mean..?"

He throws a glance back at the others, who are aready moving up, Damn, if this is what I think, they're never gonna let me hear the end of it.

He scowls a bit at the thought.

Dr._Bob
2005-12-16, 10:11 PM
"... a brain, obviously." The cloaked figure finishes Lumpy's sentence for him.

The cloaked figure then raises cachectic four-fingered hands to his hood, drawing it back and revealing the grotesque features of a horrible aberration of nature. He (it?) has hairless, rubbery mauve skin and slimy tentacles where a mouth should be. A chill of recognition runs through each party member's spine (except for Lissa's) - illithid ... mind flayer!

Ensuring that everyone, regardless of whether or not he or she comprehends Undercommon, understands the ferryman's requirement, a voice "speaks" directly into each party member's mind ... I will require one brain in exchange for safe passage to the closest landfall beneath Telflamm ...

Muzzleflash
2005-12-16, 10:53 PM
Djital

Djital's face drops sharply, and he scowls, looking at his feet. "Dammit! So much for my theory of what you would want and how I could... nevermind. Besides, it probably doesnt matter," he raises his voice, "if this Sethra fellow isn't strong enough to attack you, he's not worth the respect that most foes earn."

He sits on a rock and rubs his forehead. "I'm not interested in dying, or choosing who does. If it comes to it, I'll go harvest a live Drow soldier myself."

Erikkin
2005-12-16, 11:40 PM
Fizahn:

"Harvesting a drow soldier sounds fine. Although he hasn't specified wether the brain has to be gnome-oid or not. Maybe a darkmantle would have done just fine if those things even have brains. In case you're wondering Lissa, the ferryman is a mindflayer." Fizahn peers intently into space for a moment, deep in thought. Surface brains are probably a delicacy, so he'll want one of those. I wonder if we could give him Lumpy's, it's not like he ever uses it. If we had kept Thokk's body instead of feeding it to the ooze... God that turned out horribly...

Zeal
2005-12-17, 01:13 AM
Hajih, Human Ranger

"Hmmm, how about Lumpy, he's not using his!" Hajih cackles a bit and sits down to really think.

Phasm
2005-12-17, 01:29 AM
Lissa, terrified blind gnome

"GREAT BARAVAR CLOAKSHADOW!", Lissa yelps. She shakes her rapier-cane free of its sheath with a slithering hiss. "Okay, anyone who even considers using my brain as the passage fee is getting a yard of gnomish steel in his guts! As soon as I find your guts, that is!" Her breathing is rapid, and her blind eyes dart around seemingly at random. "I know I'm a drain on the party resources, but dammitall, I don't want to die!" Evidently Lissa's tightly-strung nerves have just snapped.

runehawk
2005-12-17, 04:59 AM
Lizardkin Druid

The pervading wrongness that accompanied the arrival of the boat did not diminish as the adventurers approached the jetty collectively.

Ssathiya had watched the lone boatman bargain with Lumpy who had strode forward initially. As he stood in line with the rest, he couldn't shake off the bad vibes he continued to receive from the boat in general. He understood how badly the pinkskins wanted to escape this neverending darkness to a place known as'teff-lamm' so he patiently waited in line not mentioning a word.

As the precise terms of the boatman were translated to him, hie frowned in puzzlement and he strode closer to the edge of the jetty to get a better look at the boatman who made such strange demands.

His jaw dropped as the creature pushed its hood back. He did not recognise its kind. If indeed there were more of it. But the twisted aura it radiated told the druid enough. It was unnatural. A blight to the natural order. The Balance. Raising his clawed hands, he tensed to leap onto the deck of the ship but his instincts warned him that a creature who traveled alone in this realm in a vessel of foul magic was no mere brute to be slaughtered. Wisely he restrained himself but his face remained a mask of hatred and the sounds of his fast breathing even told blind Lissa that the druid was agitated.

The_King_of_Durf
2005-12-17, 03:01 PM
Darius

"Well uh, you won't want mine... it might bite back." Darius says with a half-hearted chuckle.

Darius looks over at the Elthans, trying to figure out which one is which, and which one he doesn't like. He lowers his voice, trying to whisper only to the mind flayer. "There's two of them, see. We don't need both."

Yoric_Steele
2005-12-17, 04:18 PM
Trinark, Drow Cleric

Trinark's expression changes signicantly, at the sight of the 'Flayer' and the implication of its words.

In broken Common he speaks up, "I'll do it, I volunteer to sacrifice myself for this groups passage." His voice sounds surprisingly calm and serene.

Trinark ignores the inevitable looks of astonishment from the rest of the group. In Undercommon to the Flayer, "What guanantee do I have that they will reach their destination safely?"

He folds his arms defensively, waiting for an answer.

Dr._Bob
2005-12-17, 05:48 PM
Trinark's noble gesture and defiant body language seems to mean little to the illithid.

None, of course.

Phasm
2005-12-18, 01:11 AM
Lissa

Lissa lowers her rapier slightly, turning to where she heard Trinark. *"No! *There has to be another way!" *She turns toward the sound of water, hoping she's facing the ferry-illithid, and speaks in Undercommon. *"Does it have to be a humanoid brain? *Something from an intelligent creature? *Or can it be, say, an animal brain?"

Dr._Bob
2005-12-18, 11:00 AM
The illithid's tentacles twitch as Lissa asks her question. It is hard to know whether this represents amusement or irritation.

A talking mole! How surprising! I have heard tales of small, blind burrowing animals from the Upperdark, but I had not realized that they could speak!

Little she-mole, what is the difference between your brain, the brain of an intelligent creature, and the brain of an animal?

Do not worry, little mole, I will require at least 3 pounds worth of brain. Your little head contains not enough to ensure passage for all 16 of you.

Callos_DeTerran
2005-12-18, 04:58 PM
Callos

As the boatman revealed his face and stated its claims the necromancer could only stare at it dumbfounded. He had never seen an illithid before being from the surface but he had heard stories about the brain stealers. This wasn't right. How could the creature demand a brain as passage unto the boat? And where on earth where they going to get one?

"Surely there is something else we can barter with boatman. Maybe an item of magic or currency? Something besides the life of one of us or someone else?"

((OOC: Sorry 'bout that. Had trouble staying on my computer for any long period of time.))

Zeal
2005-12-18, 05:35 PM
Hajih, Human Ranger

Hajih sits there, thinking. "FISH" he suddenly exclaims. "We can use fish brains, right?"

Erikkin
2005-12-18, 07:44 PM
Fizahn:

Me, Linda, the Elthans, Druid, Achkby, Lissa, Lumpy, Hajih, Darius, Aeroz, Sherya, Trinark, Callos and his friend. That's only fifteen... "Well, I guess Lissa, Achkby, and I are excluded from cerebral sacrifice. What's the ilithid mean by sixteen? There are only fifteen of us, I think it's trying to rip us off!"

Dr._Bob
2005-12-18, 08:12 PM
You see, serpent? You match them in intelligence, yet they treat you like a servant. You are a sentient being, yet it is as if you don't exist in their eyes.

The illithid turns its gaze toward Callos.

What would you offer in place of a brain? You don't even have undergarments ...

King_of_GRiffins
2005-12-18, 08:55 PM
Elthan II

"I believe he means Eckun, Fizahn, as the 16th member."

*He holds Eckun out on his arm for Fizahn to see.
The snake speaks(hisses) its reply to the Illithid
"Granted, they are not the ssmartest of beings, but I'd rather be in a group than a lone ssnake in the grasss. Thiss iss why I stay for my masster."*

"Well said."

"I suppose he'll accept fish, Hajih, if we can get 48 of them to rip thier brains out for us. Otherwise, I second Callos' suggestion. It must not be often that you come upon such a chance as this, is it? A chance to feast so easily, simply by sailing a boat. It must be hard to find others down here willing to throw themselves at you, let alone come near enough to eat. Would you accept an item, that with it, you would not have to search(or barter) for your next meal?"

*He catches the Ioun stone circling him between his thumb and forefinger, holding it to be seen by the Illithid.*

(OOC: having to edit multiple times. Started posting just before DR.)

Phasm
2005-12-18, 11:48 PM
Lissa, gnome-mole

Lissa remains silent for a few moments, then starts giggling. *It's clear that she's trying to stop, and equally clear that she's having absolutely no success. *Finally the giggles subside enough for her to talk.

"A... talking... mole! *Oh, dear gods..." *Lissa chuckles a bit more. *"I've been called a lot of things, many of them less than complimentary, but I do believe that's the first time anyone's ever called me a mole. *I'm a gnome, sir. *Sort of like a swirfneblin, except we live in the 'Upperdark', as you called it. *Moles are much, much smaller, about the length of... um... a drow's hand from wrist to fingertips, and they've got short fur all over. *They're not very talkative, either."


(OOC: We don't have moles where I live, so I'm assuming they're about the same size as a gopher. *Which we do have, unfortunately.)

Dr._Bob
2005-12-18, 11:57 PM
Surely you jest, she-mole-that-speaks. I know of gnomes and have eaten the brains of two. Neither was blind. No, you must be a mole. There can be no other explanation.

The illithid seems amused by Lissa's sincerity. Then, he turns the telepathic conversation toward Elthan.

Your understanding of our ways is limited serpent-friend. Only fools like yourselves would attempt to travel through the Middledark and across the Sea without slaves or thralls. I am kept more than adequately supplied by the drow and duergar who routinely require my services.

The illithid pauses before continuing. His telepathic "voice" softens.

I am not, however, completely heartless and unfeeling. Obviously, your group is not prepared to surrender a brain (even one volunteered by your drow companion). I am sure that we can come to a mutually satisfactory alternative arrangement ...

I will accept the ioun stone in exchange for passage for you and your loyal serpent. As for the rest of you, I will require that each of you surrenders your most valuable possession. In return, I offer safe passage to the closest landfall beneath Telflamm.

And you may keep your brains.

Zeal
2005-12-19, 12:05 AM
Hajih, Disarmed Ranger

Looking at his rapier, Hajih pulls it into his chest "Can't you just take Lumpy's brain? This is all I got."

King_of_GRiffins
2005-12-19, 12:41 AM
Elthan II

*Elthan takes out a set of Sunrod from his pack, and tosses it to Callos, and a set of Leather Armor to Djital.*

"Use those to pay for your way, those are now the most valuable, if not the only, item you posses."

*He walks up to the Illithid to hand him the Ioun.*

Muzzleflash
2005-12-19, 02:13 AM
Djital

"You know, I was just going to give him these pants, but they're technically on loan from the Ranger. He holds the leather armor, waiting for confirmation as to whether squid-face wants the pants (Shiny!) or the armor. Switching to Under-Common, he addresses the Illithid.

"Excuse me, you might happen to be able to tell us who is currently posessed by some sort of vengeful, harassing, spellcasting spirit? Surely that would be no challenge for a being of your abilities, and he's blinding people who cast divination spells and such." Djital points to Lissa. "There might not even be any of the original person left- in which case I'm sure any brain that was occupied by a centuries old necromancer would be special."

I better not ask him why my eye is talking to me. Yeah, probably that's not a good idea.

Phasm
2005-12-19, 02:15 AM
Lissa

Lissa swallows as the mind flayer makes his announcement. Well, it could be worse. A LOT worse. What do I give him, though? A thought strikes her, and she digs the green gem out of her haversack again. "Okay, does anyone here know anything about gemstones? Fizahn, Aeroz? I need an estimate of how much this thing is worth." The gnome looks slightly irritated. "Ordinarily I'd do this myself... of all the times to be hit with a blindness spell. I swear, when we track down that Sethra, I'm going to make him wish his father never met his mother! Hey Elthan, does he even still have a body of his own? 'Cause it really puts a crimp in most of my revenge plans if he doesn't."

Red-hot tongs... yeah, and then you get out the honey and find a fire-ant hill... or maybe do that first... then tattoo 'LOSER' across his forehead. With dull needles and the cheap oak-gall ink that really, really stings... Evil thoughts, Lissa, evil thoughts! No! Bad girl!

Dr._Bob
2005-12-19, 04:20 PM
The illithid shakes his head.

She-mole, do not try to deceive me. The gem is not the possession that you value the most ...

Phasm
2005-12-19, 08:20 PM
Lissa

Lissa nods, putting the gem away. Ohhh... what I value most, not what's most valuable. Damn. Demon-damn it. I'm sorry, Thokk... Very slowly, she starts to unfasten the silvery brooch from her cloak. Her blind eyes shine suspiciously, but Lissa holds her head up high as she offers the brooch in the ferry-illithid's direction. "My mistake. I thought you meant monetary value. Um, I know this is magical, but I'm not sure how exactly. Thokk..." Her voice falters for a moment. "He might've known, but he... he's not with us anymore."


(OOC: At this point, the brooch is what Lissa emotionally values most, since it belonged to Thokk. Her backpack, weapons, and holy symbol are all valuable but ultimately replaceable; there will never be another Thokk.)

The_King_of_Durf
2005-12-19, 08:21 PM
Darius

"Wh-what? My bow?" Darius says, with what almost resembles a look of fear on his face.

No, no, no, no! Without it you cannot make it! You cannot live! You must find another way! You must get a brain!

"This entire group is useless without these possessions! I don't care if I have to go down by myself a kill a damn drow to get this brain for you!"

((Damn Darius and his stupid bow.... grumble grumble grumble))

Dr._Bob
2005-12-19, 08:56 PM
The ferryman accepts the armor, sunrod, and amulet.

The Elthan clone, Callos, and Djital are allowed on board. The illithid reaches out a claw-like hand, guiding Lissa onto the longboat as well.

You are correct, "Djital-human," there are members of your party who are not who they pretend to be. But it is not my place to reveal their lies. We illithids are, after all, a highly ethical people.

The mind flayer looks over the other members of the party to see if anyone else plans to board, holding out both hands, fingers outstretched.

I shall return in eight of your days. That should give you plenty of time to capture a prisoner or two.

bhdrake
2005-12-19, 09:04 PM
Lumpy, Half-Orc Warrior

Once the Illithid started to address the party at large, Lumpy had more or less quieted down in thought. He wasn't much of a negotiator, and knew when to fold his hand. And while the prospect of giving up a brain for passage didn't overly appeal to them, he had had more than a few people worth considering on the matter. The mindflayer's second offer held some merit, though.

Hmm.. Without Grinder, I ain't got much left worth considering. A pack full of junk, A bow I barely use.. My armor, but I can't give that up. The dwarf's amulet's magic, it must be worth something.

runehawk
2005-12-19, 10:45 PM
Lizardkin Druid

Seeing the others acquiece to the illithid's demands in the hope of a swift journey to Teflamn, the reptilian knew a fork in the crossroads had come.

It pained him that the pinkskins willingly dealt with the aberration and his heart he knew that that was a line he would never cross. It would betray the Balance, Semuanya and all that made him Lizardkin. It was shameful enough that he was unable to erase the squid-man from existence.

Sighing, he proceeds next to Sheyra, "Little one, we must speak". He drops to a knee so his face would be closer to hers.

Erikkin
2005-12-19, 11:06 PM
Fizahn:

I don't really have much to give, not much that would be useful to him anyway. Fizahn grudgingly unclasps his cloak. He looks at it one last time before holding it out to the ilithid. I'm certain that this thing has saved my life more than once, might as well make it a third time. "Good luck getting it to fit. It's all yours." Trying to steal it back probably wouldn't be a good idea, would it ilithid?

Elmorwen
2005-12-20, 01:08 AM
Sheyra

What's most valuable to me... I guess that's the letter. But I can't give that. I made a promise. My entire nation may fall if I give away the letter.

The young monk turns to Ssathiya when he talks to her.

"Please... don't call me that. My name is Sheyra, please address me as such," Sheyra says, trying not to be rude. She shakes her head. "Anyway, what is it you want to say?"

runehawk
2005-12-20, 01:43 AM
Lizardkin Druid

The lizardkin blinks at the quick offering of the name. He recovers and looks at her long then sighs.

"You honour me with your name....sShey-ra"

" sSomething you musst know about sSethra. The wizard huntss . You... need to know... that he seeks.... YOU."

He pauses for the words to sink in.
"I know not why."
He frowns with effort:
"Why.. this is so"
The frown is replaced by a pained expression.
"I WILL NOT go in the boat... I cannot ask you to stay. Here."
He swings an arm indicating the Underdark
"But you... do not... have to go. I can find another path for you and others who remain. The squid-creature is not..natural."
The lizard's jaw clenchs as his expression switches to one of anger and he looks at sheyra's feet. An action few lizardkin would perform.
I will not abide by it... or... DO as it asks

Phasm
2005-12-20, 02:32 AM
Lissa

Lissa sighs and sits down in the boat, fumbling a bit as she fits the sheath back on her rapier. Turning toward the druid's voice, she responds in his language. "I realize that for you, druid, this is like dealing with a devil would be for me. But... well, I at least don't really have a choice." Lissa points to her blind eyes. "Telflamm is my best chance of getting my sight restored. Without eyes that work, I'm little more than a burden... and I refuse to be a burden for any longer than I must." She shrugs. "And so far, the illithid's been more than fair. He could have stuck to his original fee of a brain."

Ewww! That's just... ewww. Happy thoughts, Lissa, before he starts eavesdropping again. Achkby, mmm...

A slight smile plays across the gnome's face. Hey, I wonder if Callos caught those particular thoughts when he was scanning us? Haha, I bet he did! That would explain his expression! Lissa covers a smirk with one hand.

Callos_DeTerran
2005-12-20, 08:07 AM
Callos

In the mind of Callos this could only be a good thing. The mind flayer no longer wanted a brain and would instead take the most valuable object that a person had. While that had seemed a problem at first one of the elfs had given him something to barter for. So now they just might be on their way to the surface at last. When Lissa covers her mouth with her hand so soon after laughing her head off it occured to Callos that she might be having inapprobiate thoughts again. Leaning down he whispered to the gnome while trying to keep a straight face.

"Maybe you should concentrate on whats happening instead of thinking of stuff like that."

Yoric_Steele
2005-12-20, 09:31 AM
Trinark, Drow Cleric

Upon hearing the alternate terms from the Flayer, Trinark knew his decision had been made.

Trinark speaks up to the group, "Friends, I cannot continue on this jounrey. My offered to give myself up for the group, and now I forced to give up a possession I am not willing to. My most prised possession right now is this Longsword, which represents my link to my faith. I am simply unwilling to part with it, period."

"Those of you who are continuing on, I wish you the best of luck and safe conclusion. If any remain behind, I will continue to guide and protect you as best I can."

Trinark moves back away from the boat, observing the rest of the group. Patiently waiting for eveyone to make their decisions.

The_King_of_Durf
2005-12-20, 10:05 AM
Darius

Darius turns to Trinark.

This one... he has the right idea! Stay behind. You must find a brain, you must hunt!

"You may be a drow, but I think you've earned my trust by now. Frankly, I'd die before going anywhere with my bow, so I think it's time for a hunt.

I'm not sure how long it'll take.... But we have eight days to find someone, kill them, and bring their brain back here.

If you don't want to come, fine. That's your choice. But I'm not giving up this goddamn bow!"

Dr._Bob
2005-12-20, 10:42 AM
Trinark, Darius, and the lizardman step back from the longboat.

The illithid accepts the amulet from Lumpy, the small cloak from Fizahn, and a ring from Linda, allowing all three to board the boat.

Sheyra hesitates, unwilling to part with the letter, but the mind flayer interrupts her thoughts.

It is not the letter itself that you value, it is the promise you made to your father. I find the entire sentiment offensive on many levels.

The illithid's tentacles twitch. It reaches out a knobby finger toward Sheyra's possessions.

Surrender that instead. I have to confess that I have not seen its like before in the Underdark, and something about it intrigues me. What is it that you call it?

The mind flayer is pointing to Sheyra's hairbrush ...

Phasm
2005-12-20, 01:07 PM
Lissa

Lissa turns toward Callos' voice, smirk gone. She whispers back, "If I really thought about what was going on, I'd go as crazy as Darius. That's kinda counterproductive, so I'll stick to my happy thoughts as a coping technique. Don't worry, my ears and my wits are still sharp."

Elmorwen
2005-12-20, 03:59 PM
Sheyra

"This?" she asks holding up the brush. "Oh, uh... It's a hair brush. I guess you can have it. I'll miss it, but it's not worth starving down here for." She looks at the lizardkin apologetically while she hands over the item.

Zeal
2005-12-20, 04:52 PM
Hajih, Human Ranger

"Trinark, I'm with you, I'm not going to give up my Rapier to this..." He pauses to spit on the ground "creature."

bhdrake
2005-12-20, 07:34 PM
Lumpy

Lumpy watches the others make their decisions, watching who came and went with a guarded expression. In the short run, he didn't care about associating with the mindflayer, or even with giving up something important for the trip. But.. there were other considerations.. He didn't mind leaving either of the humans behind, they tended to be more annoying than he felt they were worth to him. The lizard and the drow were both quiet and straightfoward though, and he appreciated that.

His thoughts drifted for a moment, to his lost flail. He'd already given up what was most precious to him, and he'd be damned if he was going to let the reason for that go to waste. Fixing his gaze on Lissa secure in the boat, he nodded to himself, turning back to the others.

With a twist of one arm, he unslings Darius' sword, the maneuver awkward in his gnarled, unpracticed hands. Laying it down on the rocks before him for the archer to reclaim, he shrugs, his growl as close to apologetic as it can get, "Best'a luck ta ya, then."

With nothing further to add, he turns to cross the ships gangplank, handing the Illithid the Dwarf's amulet as he passes. Finding a spot to hunker down, he settles in broodingly, keeping a close eye on the boatman.

Muzzleflash
2005-12-20, 07:53 PM
Djital

Setting one foot onto the gangplank, he turns and looks at the remaining members. "Are you coming, or should I stay and starve while we catch some Drow? I'm not keen on leaving anyone behind me, not again, so decide fast."

Under his breath, he mutters to himself and the mind-reading creature. "Maybe there's a place nearby where some pit-elves might be..."

The_King_of_Durf
2005-12-20, 07:59 PM
Darius

Darius stoops down to take the sword.

"So, this is how it ends, then? If only I'd brung along a hairbrush or some other simple thing to give... It was nice knowing you all, and good-"

A flash crosses Darius' face, his eyes fill with shock and fear and his mouth drops with a gasp.

What am I doing? I'm going to die out here! Alone in th- No! Stay behind! Don't give up the only thing you have left to hold on to!

Almost as quickly as it, his face returned to it's usual composure. But for that moment, he looked almost human. Of all the things you've felt for Darius, pity would be the last one... but some of you feel it now. He sighs.

"Good luck."

Callos_DeTerran
2005-12-20, 08:44 PM
Callos

As Djital stood on the edge between the boat and the shore Callos went and placed a hand on his shoulder and whispered softly to him.

"Friend, I know that you want all of us to stick together but that may not be possible right now. We have a duty to those who want to keep going to keep them safe and make sure the mind flayer doesn't change it's mind. They've survived this long in the Underdark so the obviously have skill. They can make it until we come back."

The brown haired mage's face was solemn as he let go and stepped to the edge of the boat. He had not known the archer long but from the look on his face it looked as if what the gnome said was true, the man was crazy. Well...he might as well. Stepping up to Darius, the mage bowed low and when he straightened he intoned softly.

"May the Great Lady of Magic protect this lost soul in this period of darkness. May the power of the Weave guide him back to the rightness of mind that he deserves. And lastly...may he survive to escape this oppressing darkness and see light and hope once more. I didn't know you archer and I still don't. Still that is no reason for me to judge you or to let you part ways without a parting word. May your will be strong and your blade bright." At the end of his blessing the mage held out his arm in the traditional adventurer's grasp.

runehawk
2005-12-20, 09:48 PM
Lizardkin Druid

The lizardkin nods understandingly at the monk. His face a mixture of relief, worry and guilt. With a calm smile, he asks "Will you go with my blessing ?"

He places two open palms on Sheyra's head and chants for various spirits to watch over her. He paused as he cam to mentioning the spirits of the sky but then continued onward.
"Guard your back.Spirit of the wolverine, Fizaaahn...knows so he will aid you."

He pauses before holding her by her shoulders and saying,
" I promise. I WILL find you again............Wait for me. The visions show you ..attacked in the land under the sky............................................... ........................ Do not leave this realm of night..yet. "

He looks at the boat standing up and then back down at her."DO NOT trust anyone else"

His words had been soft enough so only Sheyra could hear them. He bows his head slightly to her and then turns and looks long and hard at Fizahn who had been standind by the gunwale, waiting for others who might be joining the boat. Fizahn's face had a hard expression on him but understanding dawns as he sees the lizardman step away from the girl and his face softens and he nods his understanding.

The lizardkin's shoulders slump a little and he raises his hand in farewell before walking off to the end of the jetty.

Dr._Bob
2005-12-20, 10:15 PM
Aeroz shakes his head sadly, then passes his bracelet of levitation to the mind flayer. Achkby seems even more distressed, almost apoplectic, as he turns over his precious wand of magic missiles. The halfling walks across the gangplank with his shoulders slumped, as if he had just lost his closest friend.

The other Elthan seems greatly conflicted. He shifts from foot to foot, as he struggles to make his decision. In the end, he decides to board the ferry, surrendering a worn, leather-bound book.

"This was the journal of a brave wizard named Sarloc who died centuries ago. I hope that you read it and learn something about the meaning of love and great sacrifice."

[hr]
Darius accepts the return of his greatsword, while Sheyra receives the lizardman's benediction. Goodbyes are said, and without further ceremony the illithid unties the longboat from its moorings, coiling the thick ropes on the deck. A myriad of ripples appears from underneath the boat, and silently the ferry begins to pull away from the dock ...



OOC: Last chance for Darius, the lizardman, Hajih, or Trinark to catch the ferry, and the last chance for any of the other members of the party to decide to stay behind.

Muzzleflash
2005-12-20, 10:32 PM
Djital

"Yeah.. Yeah, you're right. I couldn't actually stay behind now that most of them are going on the boat. I just hate to see someone face the chances of never seeing the sun again."

He gesticulates at Darius, trying to persuade him to not stay behind. "You could buy the bow back later at our next destination if it is a town, and in most towns there tend to be unsavory people that are not mourned when missing. Or when they turn up headless. I'll help you when the time comes, it will be a.. bonding experience. The same might also go for you and your rapier, Hajih. But perhaps it is these pants that are the more valuable? The boat is frellin' LEAVING! Get on!

The_King_of_Durf
2005-12-20, 11:14 PM
Darius

Darius shakes Callos' hand. "Thank you."

Well you can't give up the bow, but-

He hears Djital calling him as the boat leaves. ""Hey you! Boatman! Is there anything else I can do? As far as I know, this bow is one of a kind!" He says, rushing to the end of the dock.

Phasm
2005-12-20, 11:50 PM
Lissa

Lissa sniffs a bit, waving in the general direction of the shore. "May Baravar watch over all of you! Are you sure you won't come, Hajih? I'm sure you could use Thokk's sword. Darius, you're a good swordsman. And besides... do you really need a magical bow to hit your targets? A real archer can score a kill with any kind of bow." Heh, he'll be pissed at me, but if this works it'll be worth it. She switches to Draconic. "Druid, your hunt rests now on a decision. Which do you hate more, Sethra or the illithid?" And finally, Lissa switches to Undercommon. "I know how I would feel about an artifact of Baravar, Trinark. And I don't know your goddess. I suppose you have to ask yourself whether she would rather see you live and give up her gift or keep it and possibly starve."

Dr._Bob
2005-12-20, 11:55 PM
The illithid has drawn his hood back over his head and now stands at the bow (formerly the stern) of the longboat, facing out toward the open Sea. He does not turn in response to Darius' question, but his telepathic response is clear enough.

Your brain or your bow for safe passage. It matters little to me which.

runehawk
2005-12-21, 12:58 AM
Lizardkin Druid

Ssathiya stood motionless as Lissa's words rang out. He smiled as he remembered the bravery and antics of the gnome.
Truly..the gnomes are the most unique of all pinkskins

He stands, wondering as to the thougts of Semuanya. It was strange that his god would guide him to the key to restoring the Balance and saving the people and then separate their paths.

The Boat was never a choice. The hunt had become harder. The risks greater.Especially with a malevolent spirit that might be Sethra possessing a packmate and endangering Sheyra. Even more so now that he wasn't there to stop it.

Ssathiya understood why elders advised no lizardkin to venture beyond the hunting grounds alone and why no pack or group was one. He had changed so much since the journey began. He was not even sure if the people would accept him if they knew his thoughts. It would be against the lizardkin way.

If I had followed Sheyra onto the boat, driven by the hunt..I would lose all that made me lizardkin. If the others were not hungry and desperate to escape danger to safety, I would have stopped them.

Standing there, watching the baot move away, he turns and looks at the companions beside him.
Not whom I would have chosen to remain behind. Still I am glad that by doing so, they respect The Balance

A growling stomach reminds him. In order to survive, they had to find food.

The_King_of_Durf
2005-12-21, 11:36 AM
Darius

Lissa's words seem to once again bring out that strange, desperate look in his eyes.

Wait- You're no REAL archer! *You killed your own brother because you thought you could handle a bow! *You're worthless! No! It wasn't your fault! You're going to die out here! GET ON THE #$@!ing BOAT!!!

"Wait!!! Darius cries. *He hurtles down the dock, not stopping for a second to look back. *Leaping off the rocky edge he soars onto the deck. *He rolls over onto his back, bow outstretched in his right hand, panting heavily.

You're making a mistake! I'll return! I'll- It is time to show these people who you are, your life isn't over because of a mistake. *Show them who you can truly be.

"My God." Are the only words Darius can say.

((Well, I was planning to wait until we left the Underdark, but eh...))

Zeal
2005-12-21, 04:37 PM
Hajih, Human Ranger
After hearing Lissa mention Thokk's sword, Hajih starts thinking. As he sees the boat pulling away, he runs down to the dock, jumping onto the boat.

He holds his shelthed rapier out to the mind flayer.

Yoric_Steele
2005-12-21, 06:40 PM
Trinark, Drow Cleric

Trinark sees the last minute change of heart of Darius and Hajih and frowns deeply. He starts to raise his hand to wave farewell, but then thinks better of it.

Trinark begins unstrapping Sedryn's armor, removing most of it. He leaves the bottom-most layer of leather intact, knowing he needs something to protect him from the cold.

He turns to the Lizardfolk, "If you desire, I will assist you in getting back to the surface. It may take some time, but I believe if we are cautious we can make it."

Dr._Bob
2005-12-22, 09:06 AM
The illithid takes the bow and rapier without comment. Hajih and Darius look back to see Trinark and the lizardman standing on the pier.

Since the only illumination is the single lantern dangling from the bare mast on the longboat, the drow and lizardman are swallowed up by darkness remarkably quickly.

The mind flayer busies himself with sorting through the items the party has given up. The longboat glides through the black water swiftly and silently.

Off to starboard, a black shadow looms marking the rocky cliffs that line the Sea.

The party is quiet for a while, thinking about the possessions lost, the companions left behind, and the uncertain future ahead ...

Callos_DeTerran
2005-12-22, 09:25 AM
Callos

"Well...this is depressing. Hopefully the drow can lead that lizardman on a safe passage up to the surface." At that Callos shook his head and went over to the side of the boat, peering down into the waters to be alone with his thoughts. A lot had happened in past few days and it still needed to be sorted out.

The_King_of_Durf
2005-12-22, 10:39 AM
Darius

With a shocked expression he heads over to any sort of secluded area he can find, nook, cranny, something like that. He bends over his head and covers his arms with his face, shivering uncontrollably.

"Oh my god, oh my god...

Callos_DeTerran
2005-12-23, 07:36 AM
Callos

Slowly as Callos stares into the water around the boat and up at the rocks that slowly seem to go by he reached a decision. They have a right to know, espicially Djital. So with a low groan and a quick pump of his legs he spun around to face the rest of the people on the boat (except the mind flayer) and sat cross legged.

"I suppose that we have a lot of time on our hands until we get to Telflamm and I would rather let all of you know something about me along the way. And before anyone says anything, yes it is a way to gain your trust. Some things my friend will already know some he won't so he better listen too. I wasn't born in the same place as Djital though my mother moved us there when we where young enough that it amounts to the same thing. From what she said we came from the "north and to the west of that funny looking round rock". When I was young I didn't fit in because of my obession with reading though I still got to know a few people. After Djital left with the wanderlust, I decided to get my studies into full swing...as a necromancer. And please don't misunderstand! I'm not the kind of necromancer who raises the undead and goes on madness driven schemes of conquest, but because of this many people take an instant disliking to me. Like the mages at the dig site. You see its my belief that negative energy is...misunderstood. That its not as inherently evil as most believe but rather it is used for evil purposes. Anyway during my apprenticeship I was indentured to one of those crazier necromancers. Hmph, I was his favorite because I had a consience. I saw...horrible things before I went back to my home in disgust. If I had to do the things I saw to be a great mage then I'll more then happily give it up were my thoughts. That was when Djital came back to see what I was up too. And...this is just so you don't find out later in the heat of combat where you might make assumptions but I to can make others blind or deaf through the use of magic. But to my knowledge I did nothing of that sort to Lissa, on this I swear!"

Taking a deep breath Callos looked around at the others on this boat warily as if expecting them to jump up and push him off the boat. A slightly haunted look came to his eyes before the well guarded face that he seemed to always have up replaced it.

Elmorwen
2005-12-23, 12:32 PM
OOC: Sense Motive, please?

Sheyra listens carefully to the story, trying to determine if any of it is untrue.

Zeal
2005-12-23, 07:27 PM
Hajih, Human Ranger

Going over to Lissa, Hajih asks "Hey Lissa, it's me, Hajih. I believe you promised the use of Thokk's Sword?"

Dr._Bob
2005-12-23, 08:00 PM
Sheyra watches Callos' body language carefully and monitors his speech for any strained inflections or contradictions that might indicate deception. As he speaks, she relaxes, sensing that he is being open and honest with the group.

As Hajih approaches Lissa, Aeroz taps him on the shoulder. "Here, I have it. I hope it brings you more luck than it brought the dwarf."

The sword is long, straight, and well-forged. Hajih accepts it with gratitude.

There is a pregnant pause as everyone waits to see if anyone else wants to share a story ...

Muzzleflash
2005-12-23, 08:16 PM
Djital

After Callos finishes, Djital shifts in his seat uneasily. Since almost everything is out in the open, he sighs and speaks. "And for what it's worth.. I was a lawyer-in-training before the open road caught my soul. Now you know my dark secret, too."

Zeal
2005-12-23, 08:21 PM
Hajih, Human Ranger

Hajih holds the sword out, speechless for a moment.
"Wow, Iím honoured." He pauses for a moment.
"Anyways, I suppose if 'The Naked Wonder' is sharing his story with the group, I mind as well tell my story. At least as much as I remember."
"The last job I had was similar to this one, I met up with several folks working as mercenaries and tagged along. "They were hunting a tribe of Bugbears who had killed the family of my companions."
He shakes his head and continues the story "Long story short, the goblins found us before we could find them, the three of them fought off the Bugbears."
"However, they were a little late, I got knocked on the head and was left for dead. After that, I wandered into town and met you folks about to weeks later."

Erikkin
2005-12-23, 09:19 PM
Fizahn:

"Wow! A lawyer in training Djital! How far did you get because I might need a lawyer a few weeks or so after we get to civilization." Fizahn says this jokingly, but you can guess that there's a good possibility he might. He looks out over the rest of the group, examining them all. Then he pauses for a second, gazing out over the ocean. I don't want to think about my past but I could probably clear up a few things about how we found Sethra. "If there's anyone who wants to hear about Sethra, now is the time to ask."

Callos_DeTerran
2005-12-23, 11:05 PM
Callos

"I for one would be very interested in hearing who in the Nine Hells Sethra is. All Lissa told me was that he was a...wait..YOU were going to be a lawyer Djital?" And after he finished that last statement Callos doubled over and began to laugh hard, sides heaving as he rolled back and forth on the boat for a bit before sitting up wiping a tear from his eye.

The_King_of_Durf
2005-12-25, 12:34 AM
Darius

Darius continues to shiver rapidly, beads of sweat come gushing off of him, rapidly pooling at his feet. *Suddenly he begins to shake violently, makes a strange gargling noise in his throat, and vomits onto the floor of the boat.

In a weak raspy voice he begins to speak of his past, "My story..." he rasps, "Has ended. *It is done, finished, over with. *There is no going back, there is no changing the past. *There is nothing I can do. *The first half, peaceful and tranquil. *I lived in some small village, nothing notable. *I don't even remember the places name. *I lived with my father, the town pastor of Tyr, my mother, and my brother Aerek.

My brother Aerek and I used to go out hunting, we were so young. *Too young to know of the political troubles our village was having. *However we weren't too young to know death when we saw it. *After returning joyously from a succesful hunting trip we saw the flames rising into the sky. *Those flames... tearing at the straw, consuming wood and grass and flesh. *Those flames have followed me forever. *

There were men in the town, strange men I had never seen before, they wore mail and had shining swords. *They were ransacking the town, tearing through people I had known and loved. *My brother tried to pull me away. *He cried that we had to get out of there, but I ran in... That was the first time I used my bow to kill a human...

The only survivors were my brother and I, somehow two little kids had managed to slaughter an entire score of men. *Rage can make you do strange, strange things. *Well, my brother and I went off to find some way to start again, to find a new place to call home...

We traveled for a year, maybe more, living off the land. *Then along the road we met a man clad in robes, he ran to us with a desperate look on his face. 'They're going to kill me! *You must protect me! Everyone has gone insane!' *We waited for him to calm down and then listened to his story. *Something was wrong with the villagers in the nearby coastal town, they had all apparently gone crazy. *We were young, foolish, we didn't question anything.

The man lived in a small tower a mile or two outside of the town. *He promised us gold if we would wait outside and stop all the intruders that tried to enter. *Hours after the sun went down, we saw torches in the distance. *The flames were flickering in the darkness many yards away. *We heard shouts and cheers, the mob was getting closer. *They broke into a run and charged towards the tower. *We shot down dozens and dozens but they wouldn't stop coming. * The last we killed at the tower's gates with our swords.

It was then that the wizard came outside. *He thanked us for our help, but something seemed strange about him. *He had an unnatural gleam in his eyes. *He began to wave his hands and chant, and we saw one of the bodies rise up. *He was no wizard, he was a necromancer." Darius gives Callos a strange look.

"Nothing dead should ever come to life once more, no matter how much they are missed. *We were filled with shame for what we had done, we had killed scores of innocent people so a madman could raise them to work his evils upon the world. *Yet another burden I had to carry. *We fought with the necromancer, and after a quick skirmish my brother slew him with an arrow in the chest...

At least, we thought he slew him. *As we turned to leave a whooshing sound came from behind us. *I turned to see a firey blast radiating from the necromancer's hands. *I fell to the floor, managing to avoid most of the blow, but my brother was consumed. *The fire, the same fire that has never left me, tore him apart. *When I could see again, my brother was nothing but a husk and the necromancer was about to finish me off. *Full of rage, more than would seem possible, I shot him dead in the forehead. *

Looking back on it, it was kind of beautiful. *Notching the arrow, pulling back the drawstring, and letting it soar all in a split second. *The blood sprayed all over the ground and my face as the man collapsed into a heap on the floor. *This time I made sure he was dead. *I took my brothers corpse, leaving the necromancer with three arrows in the head.

I buried him in a nice, peaceful spot. *A secluded area in the woods somewhere. *I said my prayers to Tyr for him and then left. *I bought my bow, so I could turn the fire that had wronged me against my enemies. *I traveled the land, but all my exploits of that time were all a blur. *The only constant was that the fire kept following me, I thought it was gone, but it was deep inside me soul... probably still is.

All these years I've had nothing to live for, no reason to keep going, no goals, no way to get revenge. *All that I can do is sit and watch as the years go by, as the fire consumes my soul. *Whatever I did I was always just along for the ride, I never cared about who I helped or what I did.

I can't live, yet somehow I'm still living. *I say a prayer to Tyr every time I notch an arrow so I can try and find some reason for my life. *But of life I've learned this: there is no reason, all you can do is live. *I don't know what has happened to me over the past few days, *I believe the darkness inside of me finally won. *It's just been a hopeless struggle, but when I gave away that firey bow just now, I think I gave away the darkness inside of me. *I don't know if it's still there, I don't really know anything... I don't even know who I am. *But I know that all I can do is keep myself alive, keep all of you alive. *And that's what I plan to do, we aren't dying down here.

Who am I? What's my purpose? *I don't know anymore, but I think I used to, and I just hope some day my reason for living will return." *

Darius finishes.

His knees are weak and shaky, but he manages to rise to his feet. *Holding onto the rail with his left hand, he gazes off into the darkness, watching the stars...

bhdrake
2005-12-25, 02:25 PM
Lumpy, Half-Orc Warrior

The dour half-orc looks less than impressed by Darius's story. He growls low, his tone a touch cold,

"That's about the dumbest thing I've ever heard. Who needs a reason ta live? The whole point'a living is just that, being alive. The fact that ya ain't slit yer own throat proves that."

He gives the archer an appraising look, his voice softening slightly,

"I've served beside hundreds'a people with sad stories ta tell, and not one'a them ever let it reduce them ta a useless sobbing git. Because they decided that being alive was worth living for."

Throwing a glance at Lissa, as if to ensure she's still there, and to the boatman, one of distrust, the burly orc picks his way across the deck over to Darius, armored footfalls heavy against the deck. Craning his head back to look the man straight in the eye, he unslings his heavy bow and quiver, shoving them roughly in his direction, speaking sharply,

"So buck up, so I don't have ta toss ya overboard. That bow's seen me through seven years a militias and bush fighting, two border wars, and another four as a sellsword. Don't let it go to waste."

With nothing further ta add, the now-unarmed orc shuffles back over to his original position, resuming his wary watch over the boat's occupants.

The_King_of_Durf
2005-12-25, 03:59 PM
Darius

"Who needs a reason to live? Well, I just know my life had one once, and I was a lot better off then.

Now I have no reason, so tell me Lumpy... why is life worth living for? Because I when I get out of here I fully intend to slit my own throat.

Darius lets Lumpy come up to him and meets his gaze with cold eyes. He keeps his arms across his chest, not taking the bow from the half-orc. If the half-orc pushes it he lets the bow drop to the deck.

Zeal
2005-12-25, 04:04 PM
Hajih, Human Ranger

"So Lumpy, my dear idiot, should you hit him or should I?" Hajih looks at Darius from his position on the floor.

bhdrake
2005-12-25, 04:47 PM
Lumpy

Lumpy snorts, "Then yer useless.. Completely useless, and it's yer fault."

He throws a look at Hajih, a touch of irritation in his voice, "Hit him? Hells, I say we throw him overboard. I don't need some mopy brat pissing me off and risking everyone else's life down here."

The_King_of_Durf
2005-12-25, 05:22 PM
Darius

"I'm still waiting for you to answer my question, orc."

bhdrake
2005-12-25, 06:08 PM
Lumpy

The orc's voice is contemptuous, "I don't owe ya an answer ta anything, coward. I got all the reason I need without sharing it with ya. If yer too busy indulging yerself in yer tragic past ta find one'a yer own? I'll buy ya a nice shiny dagger when we get ta Telflamm."

Lumpy's nostrils flare beneath his shattered nose, " 'Til then, lily-liver? Plenty'a us are perfectly fine with living, so don't screw it up."

The_King_of_Durf
2005-12-25, 11:04 PM
Darius

"You think I'm being self-indulgent? Who was the little man who lost their precious Shredder or whatever the hell you named that flail, and wouldn't take another weapon because you had to use mine?

Did I once say that I would hold back from fighting, or hold back anything for that matter? There's nothing that gives you even half the right to call me a coward.

If you think I'm not game for a fight, then try me."

A little manic gleam flashes past Darius' eyes as he smiles.

I told you...

Elmorwen
2005-12-26, 01:56 PM
Sheyra

"Everyone just shut up. We're too close to getting out of here to start killing each other now," Sheyra says, looking very annoyed.

Erikkin
2005-12-26, 03:22 PM
Fizahn:

"Yeah, she's right, you should stop bickering." Fizahn looks at the people arguing clearly confused as to how it started. Giving up, he draws a long breath and looks at Callos. "Sethra is a millenia old evil necromancer. He was best friends with Sarloc, a fellow mage, but snapped and vowed to hunt down Sarloc and all his descendants after Sarloc married the girl he liked. Sethra killed Sarloc's wife, but Sarloc hunted him down and confronted him in the crypt of some snake creature that Sethra was using as a base. Sarlock and his companions ensued in a great battle against Sethra. Once they finally defeated Sethra's body, only Sarloc remained. Sethra's mind fled into a fire opal and he proceeded to try and take over Sarloc. Sarloc realized what was happening and killed himself. Somehow, the crypt was sealed and remained undisturbed for hundreds of years, until a group of foolish adventurers decided to explore it for profit. Sethra possessed the ranger Graevic and fled, leaving the group baffled. He decided to resume his hunt for Sarloc's heirs. The group remained utterly confused until an ingenious gnome found the ranger's badger animal companion and spoke with it. The extraordinary gnome was able to determine the starting points of their search. Later, they found Graevic unpossessed and a map to some keep. They followed the directions on the map and fought their way through the keep. In a room on the lower levels, they fought and destroyed a great demon but the keep started collapsing, so they had to flee through a portal." Fizahn pauses and repeats any parts he is asked to until everyone understands who Sethra is. If asked about any part that includes him, he throws in some more good adjectives.

The_King_of_Durf
2005-12-26, 03:27 PM
Darius

As Sheyra and Fizhan begin to try and calm him and Lumpy down he grins, twirling his sword in a little circle through the air, and turns to listen.

bhdrake
2005-12-26, 04:43 PM
Lumpy

Lumpy seems perfectly content to ignore the other's attempt to break up the argument, "Oh, good one, pointing that out. everyone's got a rough patch, but if ya ain't noticed, I'm here now, and ya got yer sword back. I've already moved on, and found a new, perfectly valid reason fer it."

He snorts belligerently, "Ya wanna fight? Fine, if ya think ya've got the courage ta cut down an orc with no weapons, come with it then. But make no mistake, ain't many on this boat who'll think higher of ya fer it, and least of all me, coward."

Muzzleflash
2005-12-26, 07:41 PM
Djital

Sagging his head, he covers his forehead with a hand. "Good god, enough! Darius, he's right. Most people in this boat have put a great deal of effort into staying alive, and talking about how you plan on killing yourself is a sure way to tick them off. It comes off very badly. Personally, I think you need to look a little harder at your situation and what your brother would want you to do. Take me, now. Here I am, practically naked, nearly unarmed, down in the dark with no idea when it is or where we are. This isn't fun for me, y'know? But I'm gonna get out of this hole, alive, and so can you. That's my purpose- living to see another day. How many people can claim the story we will have, traversing the underdark and the sunless seas? Ordinary men, petty men, or men who genuinely don't have a purpose, they don't pull things like that off, and I think when you're out, you'll see yourself differently."

He looks over at the half orc and shrugs.
"Lumpy, don't keep going with him. We all have to listen to it and it'll make everyone crazy. He'll get better as time goes- no use forcing him through it. Deny that part of him that wants a fight the option, and it'll wither away."

The_King_of_Durf
2005-12-26, 08:04 PM
Lumpy

"You won't be thinking anything when I'm through with you... dead men don't think." he says, continuing to twirl his sword with a grin.

Heheheh...

Muzzleflash
2005-12-26, 08:44 PM
Djital

"Hey, ferryman. I'll trade you these fine pants in exchange for you giving this guy a mind-wedgie."

bhdrake
2005-12-26, 09:14 PM
Lumpy

Lumpy bares his fangs in an amused smirk, just watching Darius as if urging for him to get on with it. Regardless, after a short while he returns to his silent sigil of the others and the sea around them, well aware he's the only one left who can see in the dark.

The_King_of_Durf
2005-12-26, 10:17 PM
Darius

Darius chuckles. He too is waiting for Lumpy to make the first move, but it appears that neither the archer or the half-orc will yet.

He sits back to watch the waves, waiting patiently.

Erikkin
2005-12-26, 10:40 PM
Fizahn:

Fizahn looks at Lumpy and Darius angrily when he is interrupted. Reaching into his pack, he pulls out a gold coin and starts flipping it. "I suppose you don't really want to hear about Sethra then. I guess you can ask Linda about it if you want to. I'll only say one more thing, then you all can just ignore the gnome if you want to." Fizahn looks at Darius and tosses his coin to him. "There are two purposes in life, Darius. The first is to be used by a god in the cosmic war where they're all jockeying for power over their rivals and using clueless individuals to advance their power over the other gods. Examples: Lissa, Trinark, any paladin or cleric. The other purpose is to gather enough of those-" Fizahn motions to the gold coin that he tossed Darius. "- and use them to change the world in your favor and immortalize yourself in lore. Very few nobles and kings do this, they love their money too much to get rid of it, but the one's that do invest time in changing things are remembered forever! People with no purpose are forgotten practically before they die, so I suggest you choose one of those." Having said his piece, Fizahn goes and lies down as far away from the argument as possible, while staying a greater distance away from the ferryman.

The_King_of_Durf
2005-12-26, 11:28 PM
Darius

Darius, catches the coin with a grin and flips it over in his hand.

"Eh, Sethra can go get eaten by a kobold for all I care... and that's a nice way of looking at things."

Darius sighs contently and rests hid head against a boat wall.

Elmorwen
2005-12-27, 08:16 AM
Sheyra

Sheyra groans at the bickering adventurers again. "The first one who starts fighting here is getting a fist in their face," she says, "And yes, I know it's sort of funny using violence to deter violence."

King_of_GRiffins
2005-12-27, 02:02 PM
Elthan II

How long is it that I've been with these people? Three, four days? I think five if I count the first day. Five days of my life... All five. They have years behind to reflect upon, and all I have is five days with loonies who keep reflecting on thier past.

"*Sigh*"

What are those guys arguing about now?

The_King_of_Durf
2005-12-27, 03:39 PM
Darius

"Funny, Sheyra? That's simply life."

Dr._Bob
2005-12-28, 12:00 AM
The illithid ignores the squabbling, and eventually the party falls into a sullen silence.

For many hours, the ferry moves quietly through the water, keeping the cliffs off to starboard.

A faint light appears in the distance. The longboat makes a small course adjustment and heads toward the light source. After another half hour, it becomes clear that the ferry is approaching another dock. A purplish glow emanates from a lantern dangling from a weathered post.

Six silhouetted figures rise to their feet as the ferry approaches. One figure remains crouched on the stone dock. A glint of light reflects off of a chain leading from the crouching figure's neck to the hand of one of the standing figures.

The_King_of_Durf
2005-12-28, 01:39 PM
Darius

"I'm hopin we're here and this isn't some sort of pit stop. I'm also hoping that thing on the chain is a dog... but I'm assuming I'm wrong in both aspects..."

Dr._Bob
2005-12-28, 10:15 PM
As the longboat nears the dock, it becomes obvious that the standing humanoids are drow warriors. The crouching, chained figure appears to be a human or half-elf.

As the boat glides closer, the illithid moves toward the bow and tosses a rope toward the waiting drow ...

Two of the warriors catch it and begin pulling. All six of the warriors are clad in glistening, black chainmail and pointed helms, with stylized spider detailing. Their rapiers are sheathed, and their crossbows are slung over their backs, but their light gray and purple eyes are hard, and several of the drow bear scars marking them as veteran soldiers.

The crouching humanoid is female. Filthy, matted hair obscures her face, and she is dressed in little more than rags. Her bare feet are cut and bleeding, and she shivers convulsively. One of the drow tugs on the chain attached to a collar around her neck, pulling her to her feet.

Muzzleflash
2005-12-28, 11:18 PM
Djital

Shrinking back into the concealing shadows of the longboat, he observes the Drow warriors on the dock and abandons any hope of using the darkness for cover, his darker eye shining in the gloom with a distinctly predatory glint. "Oh yes. I even have a clever post-kill witticism thought up," he whispers to the others near him.

The_King_of_Durf
2005-12-28, 11:53 PM
Darius

"I'm not sure that guy..."

Darius points to the mind flayer.

"Will be too happy with your post-kill witticism, or even your kill for that matter Djital. I think fighting on this boat probably won't happen....

If it does, this is gonna be one helluva fight, if it doesn't... well this is gonna be one helluva awkward trip."

"I'm gonna need my bow back. he whispers with a sigh.

Darius smartly swivels around in his seat to look at the drow. "Well howdy fellas! You speaky Common? Yes? No?"

Darius points to himself "Me Darius!

Muzzleflash
2005-12-29, 12:04 AM
Djital

He tilts his head over to Darius, whispering very quietly. "Nah nah nah.. probably not on his boat. That'd be rude." With a conspiratorial nod, he sits up and addresses the first Drow soldier to board with undercommon and a smile, halting the pronunciation just enough that they won't be able to tell if any mis-used words were deliberate or the result of unfamiliarity with the language.

"Pleasure to eat you."

Zeal
2005-12-29, 12:58 AM
Hajih, Human Ranger

Turning to the group, Hajih addresses the passengers in a low voice "Someone mentioned drow warriors? Looks like something was listening, we can free that slave and get our stuff back from the..." he pauses to spit on the ground "...Mind Flayer."

Erikkin
2005-12-29, 10:24 AM
Fizahn:

"If the mind flayer has any business sense, he'll kick us off the boat and let us kill the drow. If we give him all six of their brains, he might give us our stuff back. I'm sure he'd prefer the six drow brains to the one brain they're going to give him from their slave. He might even loan Darius back his bow if he thinks it will get him more brains. He doesn't care about the drow or us. He just cares about getting brains and he'd get more if we killed the drow." Fizahn whispers this to the rest of his group while looking suspiciously at the mind flayer. His hand goes to his dagger as the boat nears the dock.

Callos_DeTerran
2005-12-29, 11:29 AM
Callos

"Drow? Why drow? Why can't it be something completely utterly harmless like bunnies or a sparrow? Stinkin drow."

The necromancer mumbled this to himself even as he stood and brushed the dirt off of his purple robes and shuffled to where Djital and Darius were standing at the side of the boat. Oh, no. They wouldn't really taunt the dark elves would they? I mean I intend on at least trying to rescue the woman but would rather get the first strike in.

"'ello my good drow!"

Dr._Bob
2005-12-29, 03:21 PM
The mind flayer's thoughts enter your minds like a stone breaking a pane of glass. There will be NO fighting among my passengers! The ferry and the docks are neutral ground.

The illithid replies to Fizahn specifically. If all I wanted were brains, yours and your companions would have been forfeited the moment we met. I am a businessman, the ferry is my business, and I have a reputation to maintain. So once again let me be clear: there will be NO fighting.

[hr]
The drow soldiers ignore your taunts and greetings. Wordlessly, they board the longboat, taking seats on the other side of the mast from you. One hands the chained captive over to the mind flayer, whose tentacles twitch with anticipated pleasure.

As the woman realizes what is about to happen, she moans with fear and her knees buckle. She collapses onto the deck sobbing, "Please! No! Please, not like this! Anything but this!"

She turns her face towards your party. She has startlingly blue eyes and would probably have been considered pretty except that fear has twisted her features into a mask of horror. "Please help me! Please help me!"

Muzzleflash
2005-12-29, 09:23 PM
Djital

Speaking to no one in particular, "Of course not on or around the boat. That would break the contract that keeps varied groups of people from killing each other or fearing harm from the ferryman. I respect that, and naturally, we can use this as an exercise to control our baser natures, and refrain from violence while in the company of fellow sentient, law-respecting, edible beings."

He sighs, and turns toward the party, noticeably agitated by the cries of the captive."Are we going to buy her or what? These pants will probably do it, because they are the most valuable object to the party. If you don't believe me, think about how much you'd rather that I kept them on."

Erikkin
2005-12-29, 09:46 PM
Fizahn:

Fizahn listens to Djital and his eyes widen in horror. "NONONO! The drow are very intent on sacrificing her! And I'm sure the mind flayer would rather not get cheated out of a fresh disgusting brain!" And I might have to break the mind flayer's rule if you took them off!

The_King_of_Durf
2005-12-30, 06:22 PM
Darius

"Ya know, rescuing her might be a pretty good idea... I bet she'd look pretty good if we just cleaned her up a little."

Darius lets out something thats sounds like a half-chuckle, half-sigh and leans back to watch the show.

"Sorry ma'am, but that'd be putting my own ass on the line... This is gonna be nasty."

Dr._Bob
2005-12-30, 08:49 PM
The drow are as uninterested in the fate of the female slave as a traveller would be in a copper piece handed over at a turnstile.

The slave begs for mercy until her screams are muffled by the illithid's tentacles. She struggles futilely until her skull fractures with an audible crack. The actual consumption of her brain takes surprisingly little time, and her corpse is discarded with about as much fanfare as an orange peel.

Her body splashes overboard. The water churns as unseen creatures beneath the boat divide and devour her carcass.

The illithid wipes some gore from its cloak, then resumes his post at the bow of the longboat. In response to his silent mental commands, the creatures below the boat propel the vessel forward. As the boat leaves the dock, the suspended lamp on the dock goes out, leaving the single swinging lantern on the boat's mast as the only source of illumination once again.

Frojoe21
2005-12-30, 09:14 PM
Aeroz, semi-disgusted Elf Rogue

Aeroz shudders at the illithid's eating of the fema;e's drow's brain and looks up at the ceiling for a bit.

"So..." Aeroz says as he looks towards the mind flayer "I didn't catch your name. What was it again?

[OOC: Heya folks, I'll be back to regular posting just after new years. Also, if Ss-man and Trinark are splitting up, possibly getting newer party members that will hopefully rejoin the main party, I'm guessing things are going to get a little more hectic. Still, fun fun.]

King_of_GRiffins
2005-12-31, 01:47 AM
Elthan II

Elthan gives out another sigh. Though he and his friends could have done something, they choose what is best, not what is good. Action would lead to their doom, inaction to hers. Did the situation make it correct for them to choose their decision, or should they have acted?

Another corpse in our wake. Another victim of the underdark, swallowed up by it's shadows and the specters within.

(OOC: And Elthan takes a swing towards the darkside folks. Half a ten day old and already learning from his firends. Hugs(*knife*)

Muzzleflash
2005-12-31, 06:23 AM
Djital

"I.. I.. don't feel that well."

Frowning, he lays down on the first convenient, facing away from everyone in the boat. His shoulders shake for several minutes, then hold still, moving only with his almost imperceptible breath.

I was part of something like that. I. Me. There will be a reckoning.

The_King_of_Durf
2005-12-31, 01:48 PM
Darius

Darius tries his best to speak only in earshot of the party. "Say fellas, you don't suppose the mind flayer would mind if we killed the drow after we got off the boat, do you?"

Mind flayer would mind. Heheh, I kill myself

Elmorwen
2005-12-31, 03:23 PM
Sheyra

"I... I think I'm going to be sick," Sheyra moans, leaning over the side of the boat. There's nothing in her stomach, though, so she just hangs there like a throw rug. A few minutes later, she comes back up again, looking like all the blood has been drained out of her body. "Can't take any more of this," she whispers, rocking back and forth as she holds her legs to her chest. "Lucky Lissa... I want to gouge out my eyes but it won't help...I can't un-see it..." She hides her head behind her hands and starts sobbing.

bhdrake
2006-01-01, 12:26 AM
Lumpy, Half-Orc Warrior

Lumpy watches the display with a hardened expression, one that does nothing to hide his distaste, though he makes no move to look away. When it's all said and done, he turns to keep an eye on the drow now sharing the boat with them. Neutral ground or not, there wasn't any sense in taking a chance with it; slowly, the broad orc shifts, shuffling to take a posiition between Lissa and the dark elves.

The scarred warrior growls a soft sigh, glancing back at Sheyra,

"Ain't no such thing as unseeing things.. Even if ya think ya have, they keep cropping up when ya ain't expecting them."

Zeal
2006-01-01, 05:49 AM
Hajih, Human Ranger

Gagging slightly the ranger mutters "I need a drink."

The_King_of_Durf
2006-01-01, 02:52 PM
Darius

"Now there's an idea, Hajih."

Darius calls to the mind flayer, "Hey buddy, can we get some complimentary water on our trip? Maybe a bag of peanuts or two?"

Darius to the drow with a chuckle. "How you guys, got any food or drinks? Got any booze? We could have a regular old party right here.

Dr._Bob
2006-01-01, 05:53 PM
It is hard to tell whether the mind flayer is annoyed or amused by the reaction from the different party members. He ignores Aeroz's question and instead focuses on Sheyra's retching.

So much emotion over the death of a single slave, little one?

You have have no sense of proportion. Where is the weeping and gnashing of teeth for the thousands of humans and elves being slain at this very moment in Cormanthor by the armies of the Baneson? What about the recent annihilation of your own people at the hands of the Mulhorandi?

I would expect the existence of that much death and suffering to completely incapacitate you, if you find the consumption of a single human so distressing.

Or is the manner of the slave's death that upsets you?

As if the slaughter of pigs and cows and sheep and fowl, and the boiling and burning of their dead flesh is somehow less nauseating? Can you not smell the hypocrisy?

[hr]
More hours pass in uncomfortable silence. Although Elthan estimates that less than five days have passed in the Underdark, Elthan disagrees and suspects that more than a tenday has slipped by. All that can be said for sure is that no one has eaten for far too long, and hunger is beginning to weaken all of you.

Occasionally, one or two of you at a time nods off into a light dreamless slumber. In an ironic twist of fate, the illithid longboat is the safest place your party has been since leaving the surface. At least there seems to be no need for an fixed watch.

[hr]
For many of you, this is the first time you have had a chance to observe dark elves (besides Trinark) up close. Whereas Trinark was rescued in a bedraggled almost naked condition, these drow are in their prime, impeccably dressed and equipped.

Even the most anti-drow among you are forced to admit that they are a handsome race. Like all of their kind, the soldiers have flawless obsidian skin (except for an occasional battle scar), and their white hair is perfectly groomed. They sit with perfect posture and flash perfectly straight white teeth as they converse softly amongst themselves. Their armor is elegant and well-polished, with an unusual oily gleam. Their shield insignia mean little to most of you, but if Trinark were here, he would recognize this squad as a unit from Undrek'Thoz (specifically from Phaundakulzan).

As the journey drags on, the drow notice that none of you are eating anything. At first one drow, then all six, pull a couple of rations from their packs. One of the soldiers slides towards your party, offering a neat stack of a dozen standard issue drow battle rations.

In broken Common he offers the food to all of you. "Eat. Eat. Good taste."




OOC: Please indicate if your character accepts the rations. Those who do not will begin to take starvation damage.

Callos_DeTerran
2006-01-01, 06:04 PM
Callos DeTerran

After the slave had been consumed the mage fell into silence, refusing to speak as the time passes and he observes the others at what they do. The very feel of the Underdark sent shivers running up and down his back and he spent his time in contemplation of many things. Like his stomach, what he had heard in the others minds, the story of Sethra, the mind flayer, and what had been revealed by the arguement between Lumpy and Darius. Of more importance to him was what was to be done about the drow and...their suddenly offered food? This was odd. Oh well. No use looking a gift horse in the mouth. With a solemn nod the mage took the food and broke off just a tiny piece to eat first, seeing if anything tasted off about it.

Erikkin
2006-01-01, 06:11 PM
Fizahn:

Fizahn looks at the drow in surprise as the food is offered. The illithid doesn't want fighting on his ship so I doubt he'd want poisoning. I don't really trust the drow, but I'm in no position to refuse food. Fizahn thanks the drow and takes the food. He hesitantly begins to eat it.

The_King_of_Durf
2006-01-01, 06:43 PM
Darius

Darius laughs gleefully, "Haha! So you guys can understand me! Thanks for the food man!"

Darius takes the food, wolfing it down.

Zeal
2006-01-01, 07:08 PM
Hajih, Human Ranger

"Well its not a drink, but sure, I'll take it." Accepting the rations Hajih gives a small bow, just slightly more that a bobbing of the head.

King_of_GRiffins
2006-01-01, 07:51 PM
Elthan II

Though the parties recent act of inaction had left him slightly colder than before, the drows offer lightened him slightly. Even among those who they would call enemies, there is compasion. He takes one of the rations, and nods his head to the drow.
"Thank you."

Elmorwen
2006-01-01, 09:41 PM
Sheyra

It's not just her, Sheyra thinks, almost hoping the illithid is listening. It's her, and Thokk, and Sedryn, and that boy we shot, and my guards, and my father, and everyone else who's died in this senseless "quest."

She looks up and takes some of the food from the drow. As upset as she is, she is still starving.

Frojoe21
2006-01-01, 10:38 PM
Aeroz

Aeroz ignores the illithid ignoring him and sits silently during the trip. When the drow offers him food, he sneers but the pain he feels in his stomach changes his mind. He takes the rations but eats slowly, just in case.

Phasm
2006-01-02, 05:29 AM
Lissa, thankful to be blind

Through the slave's grisly demise, Lissa was huddled into a ball with her hands clamped over her ears. Her expression was unreadable, since her face was pressed into her knees. Oh gods, talk about a dilemma! I know I should stop this, Baravar, but how? I'm blind and grossly outnumbered, starving in unfamiliar territory!

Once she thinks the mind flayer's meal is over, Lissa uncurls, just in time to hear Sheyra and the mind flayer's telepathic response. She reaches in the girl's direction tentatively, brushing across a couple different hands before she finds one that's slender and callused enough for a young human monk. "We do what we can, when we can, Sheyra." Lissa swallows. "Helplessness is one of the worst feelings there is. But we've just got to keep going and hope for the best. Otherwise we'll end up like that gloomy git over there." She manages a crooked smile, nodding in the direction she last heard Darius. "And you're right, this is one of the few times I've been glad to be blinded."

At the drow's offer of food, Lissa smiles politely and reaches in the direction of the voice. "Thank you. I am blind, would you please put the food in my hand?" Her Undercommon is strongly accented, but understandable. Once she gets the food, Lissa forces herself to eat only a small bite at first, trying to smell or taste any poisons. (If she doesn't detect anything amiss, she'll eat half of the ration with a lot of water and save the other half for later.) Huh, talk about dealing with the devil. I'm in no position to be picky though, that's for sure. Wish the druid had come with us; he might have been able to catch some fish. Hmm... I wonder...

"Hajih, do you know how to fish? For that matter, does anyone else?"

bhdrake
2006-01-02, 07:59 AM
Lumpy

The big orc accepts one of the drow rations with a grunt, inspecting it carefully. For a long while it seems as if he might not be willing to eat it, but fatigue eventually wins out over distrust. He was still trying to recover from wounds, after all, and food was food, even if they'd managed to poison it.

Eating the small bit of food in a few huge bites with little fanfare. He glances over at Lissa,

"Fishing's easy, if ya got a pole, or a good net or something. And a lake. Lake-fishing is easier than sea-fishing. I don't think we got any'a that."

Muzzleflash
2006-01-03, 04:54 AM
Djital

When the Drow offer the food, a lost expression spreads over his face, and after a pause, he accepts it.

"Thank you."

Ravenously eating the rations hides any emotions that might be visible, but he continues to glance at the Drow from time to time from the corners of his eye, trying to understand who to hate, or whether it's even worth hanging on to things like that.

Derry down, down, hey derry down, it's the world turned upside down..

Dr._Bob
2006-01-03, 09:55 AM
Each drow battle ration is neatly wrapped in oiled paper, carefully folded into an origami-like package.

When you unwrap the paper, you discover several pieces of unleavened bread, two pieces of dried meat, and a small round pastry.

The bread is light and crispy, with a light taste that hints at vanilla. The origin of the meat is unknown, but it is tender and savory, with a mild spiciness. The round pastry is tart and delicious, with currant and blueberry notes.

The drow cuisine is surprisingly filling and agreeable. Your stomachs are happily filled for the first time in many days.

Perhaps it is the fact that your stomachs are full, or perhaps it is the gentle rocking of the boat, or perhaps the quiet whisperings of the drow conversing amongst themselves ... one by one, you drop off into a deep, restful slumber.

[hr]
You start awake with a jolt ... how long have you been sleeping? For a moment, you suspect that you had been poisoned by the drow, but your body feels rested and refreshed and seems to have suffered no ill-effects from the rations.

The drow are no longer on board, having apparently been dropped off while you were sleeping. A small dock lies just off the starboard bow, and the illithid ferryman is tying the longboat to a mooring.

End of the line, sleepyheads. Watch your step getting off of the boat ...

The_King_of_Durf
2006-01-03, 05:37 PM
Darius

"Hey, wuzzat? Where'd those guys go?"

Darius yawns and rolls off his seat. "Mm thirsty..."

He wipes sleepy sand from his eyes, and struggles up. "Well that was some ride." he says sleepily.

HempRope
2006-01-03, 06:25 PM
Achkby, Halfling Sorcerer

After the slave is consumed, Achkby turns his back on the main part of the boat, sitting mute in the stern (which then becomes the prow) of the craft, leafing through his own thoughts.

[hr]
When Achkby hears the Drows' offer, he turns, quite surprised, and gratefully (though perhaps a bit hesitantly) takes the food offered him.

I have heard... that they are an evil race. That all denizens of this underworld are cruel and without compassion. Yet I have met many surface folk who would not be so kind to starving strangers.

...And I might as well say it.

He announces to the Drow, "I have heard naught but ill about your ilk. Yet that is the kindest gesture I have encountered from any stranger in a long time."
He nods brusquely, and begins unwrapping his packet. He eats its contents slowly, trying to chew every trace of nourishment and flavor he possibly can from its substance.

[hr]
Achkby wakes slowly, and grudgingly pulls himself back to the unfortunate reality that is existence in the Underdark.

Great. End of the line seems to be the middle of nowhere. of course, I can't tell once piece of this infernal darkness from any other...

"Er... where exactly are we?" he ventures to ask the ferryman.

Zeal
2006-01-03, 08:13 PM
Hajih, Human Ranger

Pulling himself up off the boat, Hajih stands up and helps Lissa up "Alright folks, follow me."

Hajih climbs onto the dock and looks for a passage.

Frojoe21
2006-01-04, 01:02 AM
Aeroz

Aeroz disembarks and when hearing Hajh's comment about following him, he grimaces. "I'm still not to keen on following your directions Hajh.". The elf turns to the ferryman; "Uh, do you know a reliable and safe route to Teflamm from here? It would be much appreciated."

Muzzleflash
2006-01-04, 07:06 PM
Djital

As the boat nudges the dock, he disembarks the boat without looking back and silently joins the others on shore, carefully avoiding the monster filled water.

Callos_DeTerran
2006-01-04, 07:12 PM
Callos

Uhhh Wait...I fell ASLEEP?! Callos jerked up and whipped his head around quickly to make sure everyone and thing was still there. Then tentavily he raised a hand up and felt along his head to make sure there weren't any gaping holes there. After his brief inspection he sighed in relief and slowly got off of the ferry keeping an eye on the ferryman.

Dr._Bob
2006-01-04, 09:25 PM
The mind flayer unties the longboat and it begins to drift away from the dock.

Follow the path to Sphur Pentak. I have heard that within its walls lies at least one portal to the Realms Above ...

With that, the illithid ferry heads out into the Glimmersea, and soon its sole lantern fades into the distance, becoming just another "star" in the Sea.

[hr]
The faint illumination from the "sky" allows you to see an irregular cobblestone path that wends its way up from the beach toward a large cavernous opening.

Following Hajih, you follow the only path available to you until you stand at the cavern's entrance.

The cavern is enormous and dark. Even with the assistance of your everburning torches, it is difficult to see how high and wide the cavern actually is. At the far end of the cavern, probably a 1/4 mile away, faint lights mark a crenellated wall that seals off the rear part of the giant cave. As you approach, a pair of enormous stone doors, at least 100 ft high, looms in the center of the wall.

King_of_GRiffins
2006-01-05, 12:53 AM
Elthan II

Elthan fell aslepp easily enough on the ship, feeling safe enough in that no one wants to mess with an Illithid. When he awakens, he remains quite grogy, and unwillingly walks towards some destination as opposed to traversing it in a vehicle.
Elthans head slowly falls upward for his eyes to meet the top of the doorway. Though his eyes are half-closed with now feighned tiredness, he sees cleaerly thier not easily opening the door.
"Sooo...Anyone have a miniature giant hidden somewhere? Unless those on the other side will let us in, we're not getting in."

bhdrake
2006-01-05, 03:17 AM
Lumpy

Lumpy walks along with amazing confidence for an orc without a weapon. But with a filled stomach and the assurance that his vision wouldn't be led astray in the darkness, there was some small feelling of security to things. He continues to glance around frequently, keeping an eye out for anywhere and ambush might be sprung, or a crack for some monster to worm out of; this place was poison, an utter death-pit.

He eyes the doors as they near them, scowling slightly as he tries to estimate their size. Eventually, he shrugs, "Won't know 'til we get there, now will we?"

Dr._Bob
2006-01-05, 10:45 AM
After a quick march, you approach the stone walls of Sphur Pentak. Everburning lanterns are placed at fixed intervals along the crenellations, but there are no obvious sentries manning the wall.

The stone doors are truly enormous, each one ten times as tall as it is wide. Elaborate carvings cover the entirety of the doors, depicting various Underdark flora and fauna and, presumably, famous locations.

Entering the city, as it turns out, will not be a problem as the doors have already been forced open.

Claw marks are visible, gouged into the stone about two or three feet above eye level. Whatever made the marks was at least eight or nine feet tall and strong enough to pull one of the massive doors open.

There is no challenge from above and no sound from within. The space between the doors is three feet wide and a hundred tall - a sinister dark slit. If the mind flayer is to be believed, beyond the doorway lies passage to the surface ...



OOC: If you enter the city, I will need a marching order, three or four abreast.

HempRope
2006-01-05, 06:34 PM
Achkby, Halfling Sorcerer

Achkby walks in silence, at first straining his eyes to see into the gloom, but eventually resigning himself to letting others watch for danger -- or help.
I actually wouldn't mind running into some more Dark Elves. They were nice back on the boat... and maybe if they have food, we can barter for some.

When they stop at the doors, he thinks, these are enormous. It's really rather fantastic down here. If only I could figure out how to see, I might actually grow to like it.

"We are definitely going in," he announces. "If the way out of this unbearable darknes is in there, we are going in."

He takes a few steps forward, and waits forthe others to come along with him.

Zeal
2006-01-05, 08:08 PM
Hajih, Human Ranger

Hajih stares at the gouge marks for a moment then draws Thokk's sword.

(Hajih will linger near the middle)

The_King_of_Durf
2006-01-05, 10:32 PM
Darius

Darius pulls his sword out of his sheath, twirling it a circle again. His eyes seem to gleam when he does this.

He chuckles quietly, "Simple pleasures, friend..." he says to himself.

He examines the claw marks. "Don't hesitate." he says, once again to no one, and enters in the front of the party.

bhdrake
2006-01-05, 11:15 PM
Lumpy, Half-Orc Warrior Pugilist

Lumpy growls as the other hurry to rush in. It was amazing how they accused him of being rerckless the way they acted sometimes. His voice rings out, scarcely more than a hiss,

"Gods ferbid ya spend twenty or thirty more seconds in the dark actually being cautious."

The surly orc jerks an armored thumb back to thunk hollowly against his chestplate,

"I go first, 'cause I can see without the torches. Anyone with decent nightsight sticks ta the middle and keeps their eyes on the flanks and rear. And if fighting goes down, ya gotta keep them lights protected, 'cause they're all ya got.

Pausing at the threshold, Lumpy surveys the claw-marks on the door, peering for a moment through the open gates before slowly stepping though.

Muzzleflash
2006-01-06, 12:44 AM
Djital

Carefully removing his sword from the pants, he walks up to one of the clawmarks and reaches up to trace his free hand along it. Shaking his head as he steps back to position himself to the right of one of the torchbearers, he shivers. "I'd say that I didn't want to know what happened here, but I really do. And for sun's sake people, can we listen to Lumpy and form up proper-like first?"

Frojoe21
2006-01-06, 12:50 AM
Aeroz

Seeing as everyone else has drawn weapons, Aeroz chooses not to, but keeps his hand on his rapier, just in case something does come up.

"Well, hopefully after this we'll finally reach the surface. And some real food, and maybe even a comfortable bed if we end up some place preferable."

Aeroz takes a position in the middle of the cluster, allowing whoever would go first to go first.

[OOC: Unless it was given to Hajh when I was away, I thought that Thokk's bastard sword was in Aeroz's posession.]

Callos_DeTerran
2006-01-06, 08:14 AM
Callos

"Ahh, I don't see whats wrong with this place. A little paint and some renovations and it could be livable"

Callos slipped toward the back of the party and kept his eyes constantly roaming around the darkness around them, muttering to himself for a long moment before looking out behind him again.

Dr._Bob
2006-01-07, 09:57 AM
You slip between the massive stone doors, bracing for ... anything really.

You enter Sphur Pentak (a medium sized town of low one or two story buildings and wide boulevards) cautiously and begin carefully exploring the city.

Streetlamps glow softly at every corner, and lanterns hang outside some of the larger structures, but the streets are deserted. Truly, it appears that "the lights are on, but no one is home."

It is immediately obvious that the doorways (simple post and lintel construction) and ceilings (6 ft high) are sized for smaller humanoids. Lissa, Achkby, and Fizahn find the scale comfortable and familiar, but the other members of the party are forced to hunch over indoors.

After exporing a few buildings, another anomaly is noticed - the entire city is made of stone, not just the walls of the buildings, but every object. The "wooden" doorframes and shingles are actually stone cunningly carved with "grain". At first it appears that perhaps the entire city was magically petrified, but on closer inspection, you note clear signs that the stone has been carved. The carving is intricate and artistic, but definitely representational (rather than some kind of transmutation).

You find stone furniture like tables, chairs, and chamberpots, even beds carefully carved with unmade bedsheets. You find household items like pots and pans, ladles and forks, even "half filled" mugs. In one home, you find a stone roasted chicken sitting on a table. The fireplaces have stone logs and ashes. In a larger building that appears to be a stable, you find stone "hay" and tack carved onto the walls. Hajih even notes stone "road apples" in the street, carefully carved to mimic actual droppings.

The city appears to be an exquisitely detailed "model" of an actual surface town. There is no sign of any kind of catastrophic event, though an occasional chair has been tipped over. There is no explanation for why the city exists or where its inhabitants are ...

The_King_of_Durf
2006-01-07, 12:44 PM
Darius

"Well, this is just great! Find some food, and we can't eat it. Who the hell makes food outta stone!? Stupid city..."

HempRope
2006-01-07, 02:36 PM
Achkby, Halfling Sorcerer

Achkby, from somewhere in the middle of the party, adds, "I don't care that much about food right now. There is supposed to be a way out in this city, but if there's no one here, I don't see how we're going to find it."

He pauses for a moment, and then asks, "Does Sphur Pentak mean anything in Undercommon, or Elven, or some language? I don't think it's any meaning in Draconic..."

Does it?

Phasm
2006-01-07, 02:39 PM
Lissa, blind rogue

Lissa's nimble fingers run over the carvings nearest her position in the middle of the group, and she shakes her head. *"Incredible. *Absolutely incredible. *Baravar, I wish I could see this- the detail I feel here is amazing!" *Only her left hand is busy exploring; the right wields her now-unsheathed rapier. *"But who in the Underdark would simulate wood grain, and why? *And the work would have to have been done by someone who has seen and touched woodwork on a large scale, which means they would have to have been to the surface." *Lissa frowns, hand running over a carved apple. *"You don't see many Underdark natives on the surface, mostly because they tend to get shot on sight. *Maybe not the swirfneblin, but I can't see the Gray Cousins putting so much time and effort into surface detail like this..." *She pauses.

"Um. *You people WILL tell me if you see the least little sign of attack, right?"

Frojoe21
2006-01-07, 03:14 PM
Aeroz

"Well, this is getting a little too weird. I wonder, maybe this is all an Illusion of some sort? Either way, the flayer said we could find a portal to the surface here, so I say if we want to figure this whole thing out, we do it fast."

Aeroz begins to see if any of the stone stuff is actually an illusion, hoping that if it is, there would be real food masked by it.

King_of_GRiffins
2006-01-08, 12:26 AM
Elthan II

Elthan Examines the fake droppings, and gives a small chukle.
"All the little details... I am reasonably certian there is no reason at all for any of this to be illusory. Let's just try to get to the surface as quickly as possible."

bhdrake
2006-01-08, 01:49 AM
Lumpy

The orc growls defeatedly, "Godammit, why can't anything EVER be normal down here? Who has this much free time?"

His disappointment melts to simmering anger as he smashes a gauntleted fist against the nearest wall, steel on stone throwing off a few sparks. Scowling a bit, he shakes his hand a few times, glancing around with a low rumble in his throat,

"No, ferget it, I'm sure we don't really wanna know. Let's just find the way out'a this worthless hole"

At least the humans have to duck. heh

As they move along, Lumpy also keeps an eye out for anything he can pry up and use as a big stone club. If there's nothing vaguely club shaped he can lay hands on, he'll uproot a whole chair and drag that around, provided they're not too absurdly heavy.

Muzzleflash
2006-01-08, 08:06 AM
Djital

Picking up the first good sized empty stone mug (or a tankard / stein) that he sees, Djital runs a finger around the inside and then grips it by the handle in his left hand as a sort of improvisational weapon. "This is simultaneously the most amazing and disturbing thing I have seen in my entire life. Can I make a few suggestions? No extensive looting beyond small, easily returnable souvenirs like this, no splitting up, no entering little dark holes that might be hidden here or there, maybe under a table or behind a bed, and most of all, no yelling 'hello'. Yeah. No yelling of greetings or queries as to anyone being home."

After an appropriate interval of conversation flow, he perks up again.

"I've got it. I know what this is. Invasion plans, that's what. All these centuries, those dark elves have been planning to banish the sun and take over the surface world, right? So what would they be doing- practicing! And what would they build a training ground for invading a city out of, 'cause I don't see any trees growing down here? Stone!"

"Well, either that or the city shapes itself according to what our perceptions of home is, and then we'll encounter family members from long in the past who will then kill us in our sleep. I heard a tale along those lines once."

[ooc: knowledge check on the city name ;)]

Dr._Bob
2006-01-08, 11:12 AM
Aeroz nibbles on a stone ear of corn, nearly chipping a tooth in the process. The stone items do not appear to be illusory.

Achkby and Djital rack their brains, but come up with no interpretation of "Sphur Pentak" in other languages that would have any meaning. Hajih thinks that he might have heard of other Underdark cities with the appellation "Sphur", but he is not sure.

Lumpy picks up and discards a number of different items before settling on a stone cylinder carved to depict a folded up umbrella. He swings it a few times and is satisfied by its heft and balance.

[hr]
The city appears to be organized about four main avenues that intersect each other at 90 degree angles forming a "tic tac toe" board of sorts, dividing the city into 9 sections.

The central square is open, but deserted. Stone stalls line the perimeter of the square, filled with fruit, vegetables, and knicknacks - all stone of course.

While exploring the square, a flash of blue light down one of the avenues catches Linda's eye. She quickly points it out to the rest of the party, but in a moment, the blue light vanishes ...

The_King_of_Durf
2006-01-08, 06:15 PM
Darius

Darius gives Djital a funny look, "Psh... whatever."

Darius twirls around to spy the light. "Here we are, the light at the end of the tunnel.

Erikkin
2006-01-08, 10:07 PM
Fizahn:

Fizahn follows the others, looking at everything in silent contemplation. "I personally don't like it. I think it's supposed to be a detailed representation of a city that it's built under. The closer it looks to the city it's underneath might aid in the teleportation process to the surface that... it mentioned. I doubt there's any way for us to figure this out though, so let's just find our way out of here."
Fizahn seems suspicious as Linda tells them about the light. He looks warily down the alley. "I'll check it out." He draws his dagger and begins stealthily padding down the road.

OOC: Move silently 14 (4+10)

Callos_DeTerran
2006-01-08, 11:20 PM
Callos

"This place is down right eerie. Who builds a city out of stone with such detail? I could almost say that all of this stuff was petrified but what could do that...and where are the people? Can we get out of here quickly?"

Callos kept his eyes constantly searching around the stone city for any sign of movement or of a light. When Linda speaks up the mage spins around and stares down that way intensely. He was determined not to let anything catch him by surprise if he could. When Fizahn begins to move down towards where the light was he gave a strangled yell of frustration. It seemed as if he would have to spend more time down here.

HempRope
2006-01-08, 11:50 PM
Achkby, Halfling Sorcerer

Maybe I should scan that light--DOH! I'm an idiot... we're all idiots... can't believe I didn't think of this earlier.

Achkby quickly casts a simple spell.

Casting Detect Magic. First the area in general, then the place where the light came from. Will, of course, try to aim around party members.

Phasm
2006-01-09, 01:40 AM
Lissa the sticky-fingered

Still making appreciative noises over the quality of the stonework (at least, the stone she can feel), Lissa locates and pockets a stone pastry, a delicate stone leaf, and a tiny stone figurine of a dancing humanoid from one of the 'market' stalls. I'm sure nobody will miss a few little souvenirs... and I just HAVE to see this craftsmanship once I get my sight back!

She turns toward the sound of Achkby's voice, recognizing the language of a spell. "Hey Elthan, Linda... what's he casting?", Lissa asks in a low tone.

Elmorwen
2006-01-10, 11:19 AM
Sheyra

"I don't know if that's a good idea," Sheyra tells Lissa after seeing her palm a stone leaf. "I can't imagine why, but I have a bad feeling about this place. Of course, that may just be because I was hoping to find some food here."

bhdrake
2006-01-10, 12:07 PM
Lumpy

Lumpy taps his umbrella impatiently against the left pauldron of his armor as he stares out towards the direction the light was reported in. Finally, he lets it rest there against his shoulder, chuckling softly, mirthlessly,

"No, the bad idea was coming down here in the first place. now that we're all blissfully stuck in the thick'a it, ain't much worse we can do. I somehow doubt nicking a few rocks'll put us in it any worse. Whatever awful thing lives here'll find us either way. Just wait fer it.

Dr._Bob
2006-01-10, 04:53 PM
Fizahn pads softly down the street towards the source of the light.

The faint blue illumination seems to have moved around a corner, down a small alleyway.

As Fizahn approaches, he hears what sounds like the flapping of small wings. He pauses before turning the corner to see if anyone else will be joining him.

Behind him, Achkby casts detect magic. Interestingly, the stone city does not radiate a magical aura.

Aeroz stands apart from the others, hand held ready on his rapier hilt. The elf turns as he hears a faint flapping noise behind the party down a different street ...

HempRope
2006-01-10, 06:16 PM
Achkby, Halfling Sorcerer

Achkby looks at his feet and shakes hs head, thinking on his new findings.

Strange that there's nothing magical here... even where that light came from. Ah, well...

"Hmmm... that's odd. The city's not magical at all... not even over where that light came from. And, Lissa, it was a simple spell to check for any magic around. it didn't pick up anything except for us," he explains, moving closer to the bling gnome. He places a hand on her shoulder, and says quietly, "Let's head over to where everyone else is going..."

He shrugs, and heads in Fizahn's direction.

Phasm
2006-01-10, 07:00 PM
Lissa

Lissa frowns, following where Achkby leads. "No magic at all? That's very strange. The way out must be a mundane tunnel or something then... or it's out of range." Her rapier is still out and ready, though it would take an awful lot of luck for Lissa to actually hit anything in her current state.

Frojoe21
2006-01-10, 07:34 PM
Aeroz

[OOC: I had a post last night, but it got deleted by the forum reset]

"Hold on" Aeroz whispers "I think I heard something"

Aeroz draws his rapier and begins to head towards the source of the noise. He keeps his eyes open for anything that could possibly be making the noise.

bhdrake
2006-01-10, 10:26 PM
Lumpy

The burly orc sighs, "Yeah, swell idea.. everytime one of us hears or sees something odd, let's split up and investigate it alone."

He shifts a bit, glancing around down the streets he can see, "That's exactly what they want, is ta get us all antsy and spread out. Basic night tactics."

Muzzleflash
2006-01-10, 10:40 PM
Djital

Moving closer to Callos and Lumpy, he scans the houses and shadows for movement. "Right. Mages to the center and swordsmen facing out sounds like a winner to me. We might even make it through without gettin' jumped, if'n everyone doesn't go off on on their lonesome."

He holds his short sword in a ready position and chews at his lip nervously. "No magic? Huh. Not even a little?"

Callos_DeTerran
2006-01-10, 11:03 PM
Callos

"If magic didn't have some role in this then I'm an honest Cali****e. . Swell idea. Lets get out of here first then wonder what the light was. First we have to get Fizahn though."

Callos stuck close by to Lumpy and Djital. He may be good with his hands but in no way could he take on an enemy by himself at this point in time.

HempRope
2006-01-11, 04:06 PM
Achkby, Halfling Sorcerer

Lumpy
"That's exactly what they want, is ta get us all antsy and spread out. Basic night tactics."
Great. We've got another predator among us. Well, I hope our predator is a match for whatever's out there... if it is hostile.


Djital
"No magic? Huh. Not even a little?"
"No, not a trace of it. I was surprised too. Either the spell was permanent, or there wasn't magic involved at all. And even if it was permanent, it would have to have been cast a while ago--I'm sure I sense anything remaining from a spell that strong, and large enough to effect this whole city, if it were cast at all recently."

Dr._Bob
2006-01-11, 05:34 PM
Achkby leads Lissa down the avenue toward Fizahn, who is peeking around a corner to see where the faint blue light went.

Aeroz starts walking down a different street followed by one of the Elthans and Linda.

Callos and Djital stay close to Lumpy who growls with frustration as the party members impulsively split off in different directions.

Hajih lingers in the center of the square, Thokk's sword drawn and held nervously. Sheyra stands close to one of the stalls, unsure of whether to keep an eye on Lissa or to stay with the rest of the group. Elthan II seems to be missing ...

HempRope
2006-01-11, 06:03 PM
Oop, I meant to stay with the rest of the party.

Achkby, Halfling Sorcerer

You know, Lumpy might be right, maybe we shouldn't spread out too much.

Achkby stops Lissa only a little ways towards Fizahn. "Er... maybe we shouldn't venture too far away from everybody else. You really aren't much good in a fight. I didn't mean to lead you out here where it might be unsafe... I don't really think it is unsafe, actually, but you never know... maybe we should stay back with the rest in the square."

He starts leading her back. "It's really the most strategically advantageous place to be, anyway..." he adds unconvincingly.

What a coward. But of course... discretion is the better part of valor, and cowardice is really the better part of discretion, so it's really valiant of you to be heading back to the square.

...

Gods, that argument won't even fool me, let alone anyone else.

King_of_GRiffins
2006-01-11, 06:14 PM
Elthan II

Elthan *comes walking back into the square after answering the call of nature inside one of the houses.

"Well, now that I am relieved of my Ioun stone, my metabolism seems to be active again. So, whats this I overheard about a light or other? Where'd everyone go Hajih?"

(OOC: I posted, but it got deleted like a few others.)

Zeal
2006-01-11, 08:26 PM
Hajih, Human Ranger

Nodding to Elthan II, Hajih holds his sword ready "Gone, however we should stay here... never know what kinda filthy monsters are out there."

The_King_of_Durf
2006-01-11, 09:10 PM
Darius

Darius notices the disappearance of the second Elthan, and head over to the first. "Hey, are you that punk, or did he just lose himself?"

(OOC: Forums didn't work for me for the past few days)

King_of_GRiffins
2006-01-11, 09:30 PM
Elthan II

"Hmm, ok. Whatever they saw probally isn't worth it. Anyway, I want to search the perimiter for alternate passages. At least one of them would bound to lead upwards. Go get whoever else decided not to follow the others so we're not too thinned in numbers."

Muzzleflash
2006-01-11, 10:51 PM
Djital

Stage whispering to those near him, "Dammit, why is everyone seperating off like that? Callos, stay with Lumpy. I'm going to try my hand at herding cats. I will be returning."

He then darts off through the shadows, if any provide concealment, to the central square, motioning silently for Lissa, Hajih, and Sheyra to join him. If they follow, he will watchfully lead them back to Lumpy and Callos. Otherwise, he sneaks back with a frustrated look on his face.

[ooc: that's where they are, right?]

bhdrake
2006-01-11, 11:02 PM
Lumpy, Half-Orc.. Umbrellamaster

The dour orc seems to ponder things for a bit, glancing to and fro, his eyes glitterin in the dark. As of yet, he was still supremely confident in his vision; even with the flickering torchlight, no one else could match orcish eyes in the dark. He made up his mind, calling out soft but forceful, gravel undertone wearing through,

"Alright, if ya can hear me, listen up, 'cause this is how it's gonna be. We're gonna square up all nice-like with the soft folk in the middle, llike anyone with sense does. Then we're gonna gather up all these stragglers, and we're gonna look this place up and down street by street until we find a way out or a way up. Anyone with magic that, oh I dunno, can read minds, might wanna think about it, 'cause if there's flying there may just be some thinking too."

He raps his umbrella against his armor again, generating a sharp CLACK before continuing,

"If ya got objections, or if ya just don't like me, tough. How it's gonna be, and if ya wanna wander off and do yer thing, I ain't stopping ya, and I ain't stopping fer ya neither."