View Full Version : Harbingers of the Silver Flame
2012-11-14, 02:37 PM
OOC Thread (http://www.giantitp.com/forums/showthread.php?p=14222947)
Prologue: The Founding
11th day of Barrakas, 997 YK
Two days ago, on Victory Day, among the celebrations, lectures and sermons of the triumphs and defeats of the lycanthropic purge, and the debates of the ethics of some of the Templar’s tactics, a message arrived. It was an offer, signed by one Cardinal Ul'Lisu, for you to serve the Silver Flame in a new organization dedicated to hunting and eliminating the evils hiding the in shadows of Eberron.
Arriving at an old warehouse near to docks on the eastern side of Flamekeep, you spot nearly a dozen purists waiting inside. Stepping inside you are greeted by a trio of warriors; in middle stands a warforged, one of the larger ones you've seen. Unlike most warforged his body and features seem blocker and less defined. The live wood beneath the thick plates seems to have grown wild and small, leafless twigs can been seen at his joints.
To his left stands a human with piercing grey eyes and short, black hair marked by a single white streak. His sharp face might have been attractive if it wasn't for the pair of large scars crossing the left side of his face and a crooked nose broken once too many times. His plate mail is well tended, but has seen heavy use. Several weapons are among the various charms and symbols the hang from his belt and shoulders.
To the right of the warforged stands a dwarf in priest’s robes. His brown beard is split in two and woven back into his hair, giving his head and thick neck an appearance not unlike a spade. His clean shaven upper lip, however, gives you a clear view of the deep frown that matches the angry green eyes above.
"Welcome," the warforged says. "I am called Priest. I will be one of your leaders in this organization."
The human sighs. "Still need to work on your personal skills," he says to the warforged. "Priest will be one of the leaders in the organization we are forming today. I, Jarrius, will be one of the overseers along with Galstuf." He motions to the dwarf. "As soon as everyone is gathered and we've had a little introduction to why we are here, we will be moving below to meet our other overseer and the head of this organization. Feel free to talk among yourselves or ask us any questions you may have, as I’m sure have. Keep in mind there are certain things we cannot discuss until we are certain you accept what we are offering."
2012-11-14, 03:20 PM
A changeling listens to the three intently. It stands at a middling height, not tall or short. It's difficult to tell if it's a male or female, but either way it seems slim. It wears sturdy wool trousers and a white shirt, with good boots and a fairly nice jacket.
The changeling's shadow seems unnatural, and on closer inspection the very air behind it seems darker than it should be. If you look closely you may see that the darkness forms a small, vaguely humanoid silhouette. It's true shadow is just as odd; as it doesn't always follow his movements exactly; instead appearing as though the shadow was doing it's best to mimic the changeling's movements.
The changeling speaks up to the three "leaders", it's voice soft and apparently genderless. "May I ask why I was chosen?"
2012-11-14, 05:07 PM
A young woman with stark white hair stands somewhat distant from the changeling, listening intently to her new superiors. Her face is impassive and cold.
She is short with a wiry, highly toned build. Her eyes are deep blue, a contrast to the bright red of her oddly cut habit. The habit contains a hood, presently down, and covers her torso entirely except for her arms; her legs are bare except for a long wide cloth in the front and back. On one shoulder is the only concession to armored protection - a single steel pauldron.
She also wears a pair of sturdy and thick-strapped red sandals.
Strapped to her back is an immense silver sword with the emblem of the Silver Flame emblazoned on either side running about a third the length of the overall blade. The blade is straight and double-edged, but significantly thicker than most similar weapons.
She waits patiently for the answer to the changeling's question.
2012-11-14, 06:03 PM
A lovely young gnome with deep blue eyes hums softly and a little nervously while sitting on a barrel, and her wide eyes constantly scan her surroundings. Her sandy-colored hair is just long enough to brush over her red peacoat, slipped over a mail shirt backed with blue linen. Her trousers are of bleached denim and her boots are fine leather. A delicate silver choker accentuates her long neck.
She watches the changeling curiously while the creature speaks and, grinning, adds "Yeah, I wasn't aware 'special assignment' meant 'sacrifice for dark cult'; a little background on what the qualifications are would be fantastic." Rolling her eyes as if correcting herself she quickly adds "I mean, just, y'know if I'm going to be fed to an underpaid kyton wharfie I'd at least like to know why."
2012-11-14, 08:21 PM
"The Silver Flame doesn't feed Kytons" retorts the last member of the group with a marked Brelish accent. The seventh member of the group is dressed in a plain grey monastic outfit, the only ornament on him being a blue headscarf. Zal looks quizzically at the gnome, before turning his gaze to the trio of 'bosses'."So, with me here; you fellas do must mean fighting in shadows. Anything more you can tell us?"
2012-11-14, 09:06 PM
The corner of Galstuf's mouth twitches for a moment and for the briefest moment you almost see him smile. "Oh I like her!" he says, nodding toward Aria and chuckling. "I guess there's hope for this bunch yet!"
Jarrius shakes his head.
Priest hardly reacts as he explains. "All of you have been carefully choosen by our Jarrius, Galstuf, or Ul'Lisu and accepted by Rat's Flame and myself. We required Purists of faith and willing to go to great lengths to pursue evil."
"Hmm, yes," Jarrius agrees. "Ul'Lisu is the other overseer of this organization and Rat's Flame will be the head of it. Many of you possess skills that are difficult to find use for in the Church. You..."
"The changling is called Ko," Priest reminds him.
"Ko," Jarrius continues. "You were one of Ul'Lisu's choices. I can't speak for her exact reasons for nominating you, but I believe it was exactly that. Abilities that might make other Purists uncomfortable but would be invalable to our goals.
"Others, like our gnome, Aria, here, were chosen for other reasons. I personally nominated her because of her mixture of knowledge and personality will be essencial to infiltrate and identify the threats we seek. Though, Aria, I do admit you are one of the choies with less of a reason to join us."
2012-11-14, 09:22 PM
Ko purses it's lips thoughtfully. "...Infiltration? That may be difficult for some of us." That ended with a glance at the female human's flame-marked sword. "As for the rest, I was more interested in ... Ul'Lisu? Ul'Lisu's noticing of me. I do not exactly go out of my way to hide them, but my powers are not always obvious at a casual glance, and I do not announce them either; as you have obviously guessed, it might cause friction with the other faithful. Ul'Lisu must have been looking quite closely."
2012-11-14, 10:17 PM
"Ul'Lisu is a cardinal and has worked closely with the templars," Jarrius explains. "I'm sure her information network is very thorough.
"As for our purpose here, since it seems nearly everyone is here, we may as well explain. Almost two years ago I had a revelation while meditating. I operate in the church as an inquisitor, seeking out the corruption that occationally sneaks into the church. I was reflecting on my line of work in a private chamber with nothing more than a simple meal and a candle of silver dust."
Galstuf rolls his eyes and interrupts, "A rat tried to steal your food and you didn't see the larger rat hiding in it's shadow. No one is interested in your 'vision'. They just want to know why they are here."
"Yes," Jarrius continues. "Well, the point is that we of the church can't always see the greater evils that may be hiding in the shadow the smaller, more obvious evils. Thanks to Priest, however we do have a unique opportunity to enter the shadows and carry the light of the Silver Flame to place it could not normally reach."
"I did nothing more than live by the Flame," Priest corrects. "I was fortunate enough to have my example and words reach a unique individual prepared to being the path to purity."
"In either case," Jarrius adds, "we are asking you to be become something akin to a new kind of Templar. Warriors and adventurers who will mask yourselves in the apperance of evil in order to elimiate the threats the church may otherwise be blind to."
2012-11-14, 10:47 PM
Ari drops to one knee with her head bowed. She carefully averts her eyes before finally speaking.
"Exalted masters, I do not doubt your decision... but might I ask where I come into the equation? My training is rather... direct... in dealing with evil. I will of course obey; I merely seek understanding so I may best serve the Flame."
Ari remains kneeling while waiting for a reply.
2012-11-14, 10:59 PM
Interest piqued Zal speaks "I like the sound of this; lead on." He reflexively grips the hilt of the daggers hidden in his sleeves.
2012-11-14, 11:14 PM
Ko listens attentively, the changeling's face impassive.
2012-11-15, 02:36 AM
"Oh, Jarrius," Aria says tenderly as she stands and leans forward, hands on her thighs and head cocked toward Jarrius with a mischievous grin. "I'd be positively fluttering if you weren't trying to get me killed." Leaning back with a cocky smile, she looks around at the team assembled and nods in satisfaction before looking back to the priests and asking "So where do you want us?"
2012-11-15, 05:27 PM
"Ha!" Galstuf explains. "Exactly why I nominated you, Arcutia. They drug me into this joke saying they needed a, what was it, 'a voice of dissent', so I'm going to make sure this whole project isn't a total loss. Where these questionable purists are likely to fall into sin when surrounded by it, I expect you to pull through and remain true to the Silver Flame to the end."
Jarrius shakes his head. "Yes, well," he says, "no need for such formality, Arcutia. This group is going to have to be rather close. There are many in the Church like Galstuf who would be against what we are attempting to do here. Galstuf is at least willing to obverse and make sure we don't cross the lines. Others won't be so forgiving. It is one of our reasons for the secrecy."
"Since everyone is present and the warnings have been issued," Priest announces, "it is time to move below and explain further. Anyone who does not feel that this organization is not for them may leave at this time."
The other candidates mummer a but among themselves, but only a couple choose to leave. Priest leads you and the others to the corner of the warehouse, where he runs one of the thick, square fingers over the wall in a complex pattern. After a moment the ground nearby seems to ripple before vanishing completely to reveal a set of stairs.
Descending the stairs you enter a tunnel just wide enough for two humans to stand side-by-side. The walls are cracked and, despite obvious cleaning, still have bits of mold clinging to them.
"We're not sure who build this," Jarrius explains. "My best guess is that it was some merchant involved in human trafficking, though it may just have been a paranoid merchant who wanted a safe house to hide in if he felt in danger. We're fairly certain it predates the Last War, but with no records, it is hard to tell for certain."
"We're not here to admire the architecture," Galstuf remarks. "Whatever this place is, it has everything we need to be our base of operations. Living quarters, a meeting hall, storerooms for weapons and supplies. Might be a little small, but there's room enough."
The passage way curves only slightly as you make your way to it's end. As you approach the heavy metal doors at the end, you begin to pick up a particular smell, as if something were extremely hot or even burning. As Priest pushes the door open, the smell becomes more identifiable. Brimstone.
"Don't worry," Jarrius says. "It doesn't always smell like this. Just today. Though it may take a few spells to get rid of the smell afterwards..."
Inside the doors you find yourselves standing in a room just large enough to hold everyone. Three doors lead out of the room, a pair of heavy doors on the wall opposite the entrance and single, similarly heavy doors at the ends of the other walls, as far from the entrance as possible. A pair of arrow slits mark each of the side walls and several holes can be seen in the ceiling. The room, while small, was obviously made to be defensible, much like a passageway through a castle wall.
"Through his door and down a short hall is Rat's Flame," Priest explains. "Despite his appearance, he is a fervent believer in the Silver Flame. Please do not be alarmed." Galstuf scoffs under his breath at this, but otherwise remains quiet.
Opening the heavy doors at the end of the chamber, you enter hallway that could be better described as a series of small chambers if the four sets of doors you pass weren't open. Each set of door seems to have been created from a different metal, but all are as heavy and fortified as the first.
Moving through the fifth pair of doors you enter a large chamber. The everbright lanterns that have lit the rest of your passage into the complex have been covered here, and the room is lit only by a open, silver flames. A dozen oddly shaped basins sit around a large arcane circle drawn on the ground, but it is the large, fiery figure at the far end of the circle that catches your eye.
The creature seems to be wearing a cloak of flames, obscuring the features of it's body. The creatures scaled head nearly touches the roof of the room, nearly twice the height of a human. Great horns of various sizes frame the creatures smoldering red eyes and wide mouth full of long, jagged teeth. Although some enchantment has changed the creature's natural flames from red to silver, there is no mistake the creature before you. A pit fiend.
2012-11-15, 05:43 PM
"...I must admit I did not expect that." Ko observes. He stands to the side to let those behind him through, measuring their reactions. "I assume you have verified his devotion by some means other than simple interrogation?"
2012-11-15, 06:09 PM
"Rat's Flames voluntarily remains in our custody for six years," an elf replies, stepping out from beside the pit fiend. "During that time we tested him daily with the same questions, challenges, and moral dilemma we expect the church's prospective priests to pass. By his choices and answers, he would have been more than qualified for the priesthood. He has regularly been questioned and examined by a council of Cardinals, and for all those years, we never once founds indications that his expressions of faith have been false."
Rat's Flames nods. "I do not expect complete trust from any Purists. I know what I am counters any testimony I might bear of my faith in the Silver Flame. I hope you will trust Jarrius, Galstuf, and Ul'Lisu," he says, indicating the elven woman beside him. "They are here exactly for those concerns. The three of them are overseers of this project and can authorize the end of it, and me, if all three feel I am attempting to lead anyone astray."
Rat's Flames opens his wings from his body, revealing his large, powerful body as scaled and horned as his head. "So I am R’Tsifalamhz," he adds. "Most call me Rat's Flames since my name is difficult for anyone to pronounce who isn't fluent in Infernal. I'm sure you have many questions. Please ask me all you would like. I do need some measure of trust before we continue."
2012-11-15, 06:16 PM
Ari stands frozen in the doorway, shocked, stunned and confused at what she is seeing and hearing. Dismay is written in her eyes and her right hand tightly grips her massive greatsword, though she is too stunned to actually draw the weapon.
After a long silence she finally sputters:
"What!? What is... what!? Masters what are you, I... how is this... I don't understand..."
2012-11-15, 06:22 PM
Zal's eyes go wide. After a moment he regains his composure and makes his way to the front. How will you help us infiltrate evil? And what happens if we will not do what you order us? he asks directly to the pit fiend, steeling himself to keep from shaking in his boots.
2012-11-15, 06:31 PM
Incredulous, Aria shakes her head, her mouth agape. She looks up at Jarrius and whispers "You don't solve rat problems by getting bigger rats, Jarrius!" Shaking slightly, she walks cautiously toward the gigantic "fiend". "You need a measure of trust? I mean you no disrespect, but I don't think we're on the same page. I've read that your kind serve as generals in armies where rank-and-file grunts could rip great mortal heroes to ribbons. What threat could we possibly pose? What's your angle here?"
2012-11-16, 05:22 PM
"It is you trust I need," Rat's Flames corrects. "I know what I am makes it difficult to believe that I follow the truths of the Silver Flame, but what I am is also what has given us this opportunity.
"Much prayer and study has gone into is moment. It is possible to use the evil nature of my race to mask your true intentions from even magical forms of detection. This is why I need your trust however. To accomplish this you will have to make a contract with me."
"We've taken every precaution," Ul'Lisu adds. "This area has been hallowed, the tools and implements have been blessed, and the flameburn has been used on the flames and on Rat's Flames. Even the circle has been altered. If you study if closely you'll see the passages written in it are from our own beliefs and symbol of the Flame appears frequently."
2012-11-16, 05:36 PM
Provided I can set my limits, you've got yourself a man, Boss says Zal and turns to the overseers. You'd best not be Tarnished.
2012-11-16, 05:45 PM
Ko looks thoughtful for a moment. When it speaks, it speaks carefully. "In pursuit of knowledge, trying to find out more about... what it is I do, I've been forced to associate with many persons of questionable morality. Spells that reveal intentions have plagued me from the beginning; If you can truly prevent them from affecting us - however it is you plan to do so - it could be a great boon to me. However, I would not be comfortable agreeing without reading through the contract beforehand."
2012-11-16, 06:43 PM
Aria waves dismissively at Ko, but her eyes quickly widen and, hopefully, clasps her hands under her breast as she says to the devil "Well, I'm fully at your service if you promise to answer all of my obnoxious mortal questions later and let me take notes for the Library in Korranberg! That way everybody wins! You get me, I get to serve the Flame even though I'm terrible about following strict methodological orders that the Church loves to give, the Flame gets a competent team to get important jobs done, and you can help add to our body of knowledge for protecting Khorvaire from the forces of evil!
2012-11-16, 10:21 PM
Zal looks at the gnome quizzically. Mercenary. You should be doing this out of duty, not for the pay.
2012-11-16, 11:26 PM
"I-I... have you all gone mad?! Have I?! This is... this is blasphemous! I can't believe anyone is seriously considering this proposition!"
Ari looks to be on the verge of hyperventilation, her hand not having left her sword hilt since the revelation. She is clearly both furious and terrified at the same time.
2012-11-17, 12:18 AM
Aria looks deflated at Zal's retort. "That's not fair! It's not like the Library only benefits Zilargo, you know... Her eyes are then drawn to Ari with concern. She places her hand on Ari's leg and says gently "Hey, come on now big girl, breathe for me, they wouldn't even consider this if it wasn't for the good of the Church and the world. It can't hurt to at least listen, right?"
2012-11-17, 04:20 AM
"I can understand your concerns," Rat's Flames says. "It is a nearly improbable proposition we are placing before you. Normally the contract places your souls into my hands in exchange for power. We have managed to change this contract, binding you to the ideals of the Silver Flame rather than to me. We know the new contract works, but I will admit we do not know the full ramifications. Most of them will not be known until death is visted on those under the contract."
"Change it all you want!" Galstuf exclaims. "Arcutia is still right! This is blasphemy! The idea that fiend could believe in the Silver Flame! That an inquisitor should be seduced by its lies!"
"Enough, Gulstuf!" Ul'Lisu shouts. "Your opinion on the matter is well known. This organization was approved..."
"Barely!" Galstuf interrupts. "By one vote!"
"We are aware of the risks!" Jarrius says. "Do you dare think that I would let evil into the church?! This is an opportunity we can't pass up!"
"This fighting gets us no where," Priest cuts in, his voice booming through the chamber. "Only the results we accomplish will prove our value, but only if we pull together here and now.
"Arcutia, speak with us. What can we do to convince you of our faith and goals?"
2012-11-17, 08:11 AM
Ko glances at Arcutia and preempts her, apologetically "Indeed. This goes against everything I was taught; that Evil Outsiders are the purest evil and must be struck down before their presence causes too much damage to our world. Yet one of the Silver Flames tenets is redemption; Who am I to say whom deserves a second chance? And should this fiend be not truly repentant, then my acceptance will allow me a chance to reveal this treachery. Perhaps at the cost of my body or soul, but if I succeed, the demon will not twist any faithful thereafter."
2012-11-17, 10:14 AM
Ko's words appear to strike a chord with Ari, slowly she removes her hand from her sword, and she begins to breathe more normally, though it takes almost a full minute before she's able to speak in response.
"I... you may be right. I had not considered that and have once again fallen short of the Flame's perfection." Ari still appears perturbed, but takes another long minute before continuing.
"The church has given me everything that I am, and I have worn myself to the church in return. I will obey - but I will not lie, I am... afraid."
2012-11-18, 12:00 AM
Aria jerks around at Rat's Flame and walks toward him again. "Whoa whoa what?! Excuse me? Cute and coy isn't a good look for you, Raz, you've got to play this straight. What do you mean by 'we do not know the full ramifications'? Is that a 'you may feel a slight tingling sensation' we-do-not-know-the-full-ramifications or a 'this little project could either rip your souls asunder or affect apotheosis' we-do-not-know-the-full-ramifications? Are we going to be able to be resurrected if we die in the line of service, or am I going to be some balor's joytoy because I technically made a deal with a devil? What effects do we know, and what are the benefits of this contract?"
2012-11-18, 01:16 AM
Zal chuckles. Experimentation, gnome. I thought you liked that. Myself aren't got care. 'm gonna end up in Dol, chances are. So Boss, Zal addresses the pit-fiend, his tone more relaxed now that people have admitted to being scared of the devil. my question about getting scrupules, you didn't answer that. Say yes and you can show me where to put my thumb to paper.
2012-11-18, 01:46 AM
Aria's tone shifts slightly in the direction of "annoyed". I'm all for experiments on mindless constructs and simulacra and magically constituted flesh that cannot experience suffering, Zal, but I am no simulacrum and you're not a golem. Directing her speech to Rat's Flame, she says And good girls do not sign away their souls to infernal powers without proper justification or a really impressive story!
2012-11-18, 11:38 AM
Ari steps forward.
"I'll test it out. As I said, I owe everything to the church - absolutely everything. If this works, then... perhaps it's worth the risk."
2012-11-18, 09:13 PM
"I must insist on proper caution in this endeavor." Ko pauses momentarily before conceding, "Though proper caution was likely thrown out the window when we considered making a deal with a demon. Is there a written contract, or will you ask us to take you on faith?"
2012-11-19, 02:06 AM
"A contract is made of words, blood, and magic," Rat's Flames explains. "It could be spoken or written, I suppose. We will need paper however." The pit fiend nods to Priest, who exsits the chamber to retrieve some paper.
"Normally a contract grants a being a portion of my power in exchange for an eternity as my slave. This is where we have made the change. Instead of signing your souls to me, you are granting me a portion of your faith. In theory your souls are still free to join with the Silver Flame after this life, however since some of your faith is being consumed by me instead, we cannot be certain your souls will not be damned to Dolurrh."
"Or it could mean your faith will let this creature join with the Flame instead!" Galstuf objected. "Tainting the flame!"
Rat's Flames shakes his head. "If slain I would return to Fernia. There would be no rest for me," he replies.
"What happens when you're slain there?!" the dwarf continues. "You probably have another fiend waiting to slay you once you return."
"There is no telling what will happen to me when my existence comes to an end. I doubt the faith of a thousand Purists could expunge the wickedness of my existence, so I doubt your fears could be justified.
"As for the requirements of the contract, in obedience, in setting your own standards and limits, there is little to speak of. In a traditional contract, a fiend could those in a contract by withdrawing his power or sending his own agents to cause harm. The worst I could do is withdraw the veil that will hide your alignment.
"Obey me or don't. This is an endeavor of faith. Trust that we all will all strive to live up to the virtues of the Silver Flame are the only obligations between us."
Priest returns with a small stack of papers with he hands to the pit fiend. Rat's Flame digs the tip of a claw into his wrist and begins to write.
2012-11-19, 02:58 AM
Aria looks at the pit fiend intently. So the road to Dolurrh might well be trod on the steed of conscience. Taking a deep breath she says You know, my momma always told me not to makea deal with a devil. I can't say I'm terribly enthusiastic, Raz, but I'll take you on your word. I am willing to take the risk for the Flame and for Khorvaire. Besides, all the best stories and songs are about brave heroes damned by their own ambition and lust for knowledge or justice. I've got to die sometime, I'd rather be a tragic cautionary tale with whom the world falls eternally in love than a completely useless corpse.
Also, knowledge arcana/spellcraft on the circle around Rat's Flames?
2012-11-19, 04:16 PM
The circle seems to be drawn in order to channel power, rather than to summon or entrap. You are unable to identify many of the symbols included in it's design, but do pick out symbols representing the Silver Flame, Fernia, and what you assume is Rat's Flames name. Many short prayers to the Silver Flame for strength, guidance, and valor are written around the edge of the circle, though in the odd choice of being in Infernal rather than a more terrestrial language.
2012-11-19, 09:51 PM
Zal nods satisfied and turns to Priest. So while we wait for the contracts. How did you convert the Boss? That's quite a tale I bet.
2012-11-20, 06:21 PM
Satisfied with her analysis of the circle, Aria looks at Zal when he speaks, and turns her gaze to the oddly-named warforged expectantly.
2012-11-20, 09:37 PM
Priest replies, "I already explained. I did nothing but live as an example of the Silver Flame's purity."
Rat's Flames chuckles. "Bore them with the details," he says as he turns to a new sheet of paper.
Priest remains silent for a moment, looking at those assembled in the room. "I was one of the first modern-style warforged created. I was assigned to a Cyre troop near the Thrane border, where I learned of the Silver Flame from prisoners of war. A push by Karrnath had my troop re-posted to that border. The Cyre army routed the Karrnath advance and used that victory to push into that nation. Many of the settlements we encountered put up heavy resistance. One desperate village summoned Rat's Flame to fight us off. They were unable to control him.
"Rat's Flame destroyed the village and my troop. He captured me. Says he was fascinated by my existence, a mortal creation of wood and metal with freedom of thought and action. He was amazed that I should have faith in one of the religions of my creators. My gods' god as he once put it.
"He hid in the depths of Khorvaire for nearly twenty years, keeping me as a curiosity and questioning me on my existence and my faith. I guess those long years of testimony and explanation eventually reached him.
"Rat's Flames decided it was time to be properly introduced to the Church. The village we emerged near the village where Galstuf was serving as a priest. He personally escorted us to Flamekeep... to have us tried as heretics."
"Perhaps not as exciting as you hoped," Rat's Flames adds, handing the contracts to Priest of hand out. "Two decades of testimonies and explanations. I wish I could explain my conversion better, but, like many, something simply reached my heart and opened up ears to the truth."
Priest hands you a copy of the contract and a needle. "The contract must be signed in your own blood and then held over one of fires at the edge of the circle," the warforged explains.
I hereby grant R’Tsifalamhz an equal share in my faith and strength in the holy Silver Flame to use as he desires. In return, R’Tsifalamhz will grant a portion of his essence to enter my body to use as I see fit in the pursuit of my own interests.
2012-11-20, 09:47 PM
Ko looks the contract over carefully. "Simple. Seems open-ended. I assume this contract is permanent. May I add to it my own stipulations?"
2012-11-20, 10:01 PM
"Well they do tend to be open ended and in the demon's favor. They aren't exactly designed for the signer's benefit," Rat's Flames replies. "We've stretched the limits of the magic quite a bit already. Might be interesting to see what else we can do. What did you have in mind?"
2012-11-20, 10:41 PM
Aria looks lost in thought for a moment and turns on her heel once more toward Rat's Flames. How about a 'Raz won't sell or eat my soul, nor will he put my head on a pike as a warning to any idiot dumb enough to make a deal with him' provision? She shrugs and rolls her eyes, adding That's, you know, that's a good start. Anyway give it here, my father is a trade lawyer, I learned good not to sign anything without reading it.
Looking over the contract she lightly laughs. Yeah, I'm with Ko, I don't like this, um, this bit here? She looks up at Rat's Flames, points at a the text, and looks back down. The 'I own an undefined portion of an undefined trait with an undefined reward for an undefined period of time with undefined conditions' bit? Can we change that to maybe something more concrete, like 'I (Aria) grant Raz 1/8 of my faith in the Flame in exchange for any and all glamerous, illusory, and abjurant effects, as well as those fitting the need but otherwise unlisted, as can be granted by Raz useful in the forthcoming missions for which the contract was signed"? Maybe that's a little more reasonable? I mean sure, I don't know what a good soul goes for in this market but 1/8 is surely reasonable for whatever protection you can offer.
2012-11-20, 10:41 PM
Ko takes a breath. "Anything. Everything. A time limit. Conditions for severance. Better defined terms - what do you mean by "Strength", for example? Will I get physically weaker by signing this? I don't doubt that contracts are usually in the demon's favor, but I thought they were more mutable than you seem to be implying, especially since every sentient creature has it's own particular lever you need to pull for him to sign over his soul to the fires of the hells."
2012-11-20, 10:51 PM
Zal draws out his dagger, and carefully runs his pinkie along the edge. He presses his right thumb, wet with his own blood, against the paper. He wipes his knife clean and begins sucking on his pinkie.
I am trusting you, Boss. No buts or ifs he says, rolling up the scroll. Hope you show me the same goodwill With that he holds the paper over the fire.
Anyone forget their cheesecutter?
2012-11-20, 11:03 PM
Aria stares at Zal in disbelief. Zal! What the hell, seriously? Are you serious? Did you actually just do what I think you just did and literally make what could be the worst possible decision in your entire life ever?
2012-11-20, 11:11 PM
Zal shrugs calmly. A pitfiend can run me round in circles with words. So I spare myself grief and trust him.
2012-11-20, 11:13 PM
A small smile plays on Ko's lips. "Indeed. I can see the merit in that line of thinking. Still, we'll see."
2012-11-21, 02:44 AM
Ari looks at Zal with what can only be described as a combination of irritation and self pity; but she says nothing and instead walks around the circle examining it very closely.
2012-11-21, 06:17 PM
"I did mention I needed trust," Rat's Flames says at last. "Every condition places on the contract weakens it, so I'd avoid adding too many. A simple provision that the contract ends at with your life wouldn't be a problem I would think. After all if you join with the Flame, you no longer will need faith, and if you end up in Dolurrh you will just forget about faith.
"I would worry about reducing the price from an equal share, that is half, to any less. I do plan to release that faith back to you, as it's purpose is to show your comitment to the deal, not to benefit myself."
2012-11-21, 06:51 PM
Ko shakes his head, "That still seems so open. But ultimately, what it boils down to is whether I trust the church." He goes silent for a few moments. "Very well, That provision is acceptable. Add that clause to the contract, and I will sign it."
2012-11-21, 07:06 PM
Rat's Flames takes the contract and adds a line limiting the contract to the life of the signer.
The other canidates in the room sign their own contacts and hold them over the fires. The silver flame leaps up to engulf the contract and the signer's hand and forearm. Several of them look like they are in pain, but neither them or the contracts seem damaged as the flames return to their normal size.
2012-11-21, 07:08 PM
If that's that, Boss, I'll take my leave. says Zal, handing his dagger to Ari. Best use this, less chance of losing a hand
2012-11-21, 08:36 PM
After reading carefully, Ko takes signs the contract and holds it over the flames wordlessly. He moves back and stands silently, awaiting orders.
2012-11-21, 10:39 PM
Aria shrugs. Well that's a lot more concise, she says cheerily. Using a bolt from her case to draw blood, she follows suit with the rest.
Fair parchment, consign not my soul to oblivion, for I am small, slow, and tasty.
2012-11-22, 02:59 AM
Ari takes her contract and then kneels next to the fire, drawing her oversized greatsword and laying it in front of her and placing the contract directly on the blade. She recites a longish prayer under her breath, then runs her thumb along a small section of the greatsword to draw blood. With the contract signed she holds the sword over the fire in one hand, the contract held in the other. She waits a long moment, letting the fire do it's business before slowly withdrawing her hand.
"It's done." She turns her gaze to Rat's Flame. "Know this - if you are truthful, then I promise you to be a holy scourge on the Flame's enemies. I will do anything for the church - anything." She takes another long moment before continuing. "But if you've lied - If I and the rest here have signed our soul's away, I promise you I will follow you into the very depths of Hell itself, and I will see this silver sword is planted firmly in your heart. I hope for both of our sake's this is legitimate."
2012-11-23, 01:41 AM
As you hold the contract over the flames, they leap up and engulf your outstretched arms. Despite the heat you felt from them before lifting the contracts over the flames, they are painfully cold against your skin. As they cover your arms, you feel the cold crawl into your skin, moving up your arm to your shoulder, where it begins to creep into your bones, where it begins to loose its intense cold as the flames recede.
As the pain lessens you begin to notice the cold sensation is still there, moving and pulsing through your body, as if it were some parasite crawling beneath your skin.
"I know it feels strange," Priest comments. "The feeling lessens with time as your being and Rat's Flames grow use to sharing a body.
"Now," Rat's Flames says, "we need to spend time training both you and my essence inside you to react instinctively to powers used against you. Without this training you will have to consciously change the alignment your soul extrudes.
"However I'm sure you'll want to rest beforehand. The joining is often draining. We have accommodations here for everyone, but you are under no obligations to stay here."
"And I will continue to arrange things with the council," Ul'Lisu adds. "You will likely be kept on a short leash for sometime, but I believe within a year we should be able to prove to the others the usefulness of this organization."
2012-11-23, 05:07 AM
A year!? How short a leash are we talking about, exactly?
2012-11-23, 05:38 AM
"I doubt won't be used outside of Flamekeep and the surrounding area," Ul'Lisu replies. "Certainly not outside of Thrane"
Priest adds, "Learning to use the ability that Rat's Flames has given you will take several months. You will be discovered quickly if it can not react to spells you are not aware of."
2012-11-23, 09:41 AM
Ko gives a wry look. "You failed to mention this beforehand. Still, if this is the worst you've kept from us I'll be ecstatic. Then, by your leave." Ko bows and leaves the room.
2012-11-23, 07:28 PM
Aria watches Ko walk out. Look, I get the whole "we look like a dark cult" thing because, well, Aria nods toward Rat's Flames. "I get it. We're still not a cult though, right? I understand that we need to stay here, but we can send word, right? Maybe have him come here? Apologizing for a year of no contact and asking are two very different things, particularly when you're pretty well certain that "asking" is just a formality. You know, agreeing to marriage kind of entails those sorts of things. Dropping that "I sold my soul for infernal powers" bomb isn't going to make it any easier so I'd appreciate any break I can get.
2012-11-24, 02:34 AM
”You don’t have to remain here,” Ul’Lisu replies. ”Stay here, stay in Flamekeep, or stay in the countryside, this is a free nation. As an organization we will be limited to actions in and around the city, but as an individual you can do as you see fit. As Rat’s Flames said, you are under no obligation to stay here.”.
”And you will be watched if you leave,” Galstuff promises.
Chapter 1: The Binding Flame
18th day of Nymm, 998 YK
For ten months you have trained to use your new power, teaching to determine when to mask your intentions and when to allow it to show through. You can now be strengthened by holy spells and steal strength from vile magics when needed. You remain unaffected by spells designed to harm or weaken those on the side of good or on the side of evil. You take part in exercises in and around Flamekeep, often with Jarrius and his fellow Inquisitors, but the Harbingers have not been given independent missions.
This morning that has changed. You receive a summons from Rat’s Flames to report to the main chamber of the Harbingers’ complex. The four of you meet up in the entry way and make your way down the hall. As you approached the doors of the chamber, you hear Jarrius and Galstuff arguing again, although this time it seems the inquisitor is the one incised instead of the fiery-tempered dwarf.
”This is ridiculous!” you hear Jarrius shout as you open the doors. ”This is not what we formed the Harbingers for!”
”Sounds like this is exactly why we formed the Harbingers,” Galstuff replies, obviously pleased to be the one in control for a change. ”Infiltrate evil and destroy it from within.”
”Not to send them to their deaths in some far corner of Khorvaire!” Jarrius replies. ”The Demon Wastes! Not even all the Templars of the Chruch and the armies of Thrane could clear that Flame forsaken wasteland! It is madness!”
”They are only being asked to plug a leak,” Galstuff responds dryly.
”Our Harbingers have arrived,” Rat’s Flames says, drawing the pair out of their argument. ”Ari, Zal, Aria, and Ko. As I’m sure you have gathered we have finally been given an assignment. You have each distinguished yourselves in our training exercises, so I am lead to believe you four are our best choice for successfully completing the council’s wishes.
”It seems raiding parties from the Demon Wastes have been sailing across Eldeen Bay and attacking the coasts of Aundair. They have concentrated on the cities and settlements with Silver Flame congregations. Most unsettling are reports that demons are personally leading these barbarians.
”The few warriors of the faith in that area have tried to destroy the docks and caves that the barbarians have been using to exit from the Demon Wastes, but the barbarians continue to find new exits in the cliffs. Because it seems they are targeting our faith and the rarity of demons exiting those lands, the council wants us to enter the Demon Wastes and find some way to put these raids to an end.
”Any questions about this assignment?”
Ko:Knowledge (The Planes) & Knowledge (Religion)
Beneith the Demon Wastes, powerful demons called Rakshasa rajahs are imprisoned. The followers of these rajahs, including lesser Rakshasas and numerous demons, rule the Wastes. The barbarian tribes of the land, mostly human, worship and obey these demons.
Aria:Sorry to cut you short in the prologue, just want to get things moving along.
Knowledge (Geography), & Bardic Knowledge
As you recall from the maps and stories you've studies over the years, the Demon Wastes are exactly that, a wasteland full of demons. It is full barbarians who worship the demons, perticular the Rakshasas and Night Hags, although the most powerful of those demons are trapped beneith the earth. The only settlement of note lies in the north-east, not too distant from where these raiding parting must be departing from.
The barbarians and their demon masters are opposed by tribes of orc warriors called the Ghaash'Kala who dedicate their lives to preventing anything from leaving the wastes. Combined with the maze-like canyons that block travel in and out of the Wastes from land and the cliffs that dominate the shores, it is rare to see trouble coming out of the north.
2012-11-24, 04:13 AM
Zal looks at the devil and the two overseers. How are we getting there? he asks.
2012-11-24, 04:45 AM
Rat's Flames hand each of you a small package. "Inside are tickets for the Lightning Rail to Fairhaven," he explains. "From there we have arrange for passage on a Orien caravan headed to an Aundair fort near the coast, where it will be a short ride to a village where a vessel has been chartered to take you across the bay.
"Also inside is a case containing traveling papers. They list you as Cyre refugees. That should ease you passage across the border and mask your aligance to the Silver Flame if inspected. The edges of the paper's casing are coated with a thin, unnoticable layer of a special alchemical silver. Scrapping this edge over a candle's flame will indicate to our clergy and templars that you are on special assignment from the Chruch."
2012-11-24, 06:44 AM
Aria looks over the papers and nods. Classy. Cyre's ruin left a nasty monster infection, gives a good reason for us to be heavily armed. I like it. She looks up at Rat's Flames. Have we got any assistance lined up? Or are we going to support the Ghaash'Kalan orcs? Do we have a set operation or is this more an open-ended as-we-see-fit kind of thing?
2012-11-24, 07:58 AM
"Once you depart at the cliffs, you will be on your own," Rat's Flames responds. "Act according to your conscious and as the situation demands. We do not know if Ghaash'Kalan are in that area, nor what may have happened to them if they are."
"We have little information on the situation," Jarrius adds. his words curt with irritaion, much to Galstuf's amusement. "The Silver Flame isn't exactly welcome there. You'll find no aide or reinforcements from the church. You'll have few recourses if anything goes wrong."
2012-11-24, 08:51 AM
"We'll do all we can." Ko stands ready to leave, packet in hand.
2012-11-24, 02:10 PM
Ari says nothing, content to let the others talk. She does however crack a rare smile at the mention of demons, and it's evident she relishes the chance to face such powerful opponents of the faith.
2012-11-24, 11:18 PM
We'll be on our way then says Zal dryly, heading towards the door.
2012-11-25, 12:20 AM
Aria watches watches as Zal turns to walk out. We should probably leave. Stay safe! Bowing graciously, Aria hurries out as well.
2012-11-25, 03:43 AM
Ari bows formally to Galstuff. "Thank you for this opportunity exalted master. We will succeed, or die trying, I promise you."
Then Ari turns to follow Aria and Zal.
2012-11-26, 06:21 PM
Zal waits inside the lightning rail station, waiting for the service from Sigilstar to pull in. He is buying a pack of playing cards from a merchant, as well as a silver piece's worth of Sharn-style spiced nuts.
2012-11-26, 07:07 PM
You leave Harbinger's base and make your way to the center of Flamekeep, to the Cathedral of the Silver Flame to see what information you can gather about the Demon Wastes before departing.
At the gates of its walls you send your request for Ul'Lisu through the paladins standing guard. A few moments later you are admitted into the outer grounds and up to the great doors of the cathedral, carved from the same alabaster as the walls and decorated with a pair of large stained glass murals depicting the Silver Flame radiating its power and light to its worshipers, everything from clergy and paladins, to humble farmers and smiths. Stepping through the doors you enter black marble halls, etched with symbols and patterns depicting the silver flame and inset with silver. Windows, many holding more stained glassed murals, allow the light inside, making the silver inlays on the floors, pillars, and walls appear to be flickering with flames.
A warforged guard leads you through the halls to one of the many libraries in the Cathedral, where you find Ul'Lisu waiting. "I already have the librarian here looking for books on the Demon Wastes," she tells you as you approach. "I have to say I was surprised to hear your requests, but I am glad to see Rat's Flames and Priest choose agents who prefer to be informed before they enter the field."
An elderly man in priest robes emerges from the shelve, carrying three books. "This are likely the best to choose from in a hurry," he explains, putting the books down on a nearby table. "This on is about the known geography of the Demon Wastes. This is on the history of the demons, covering the wars of ancient and their more modern plots. This one deals with religions of the Wastes, from demon worship to the Binding Flame. This last one caused quite a controversy in the church for its candidness... but I'm sure you're not interested in that history. Well, if you need anything else, just ask." With that the old man moves to a desk in the corner, where he begins to study the numerous open books covering it.
Ul'Lisu nods. "We have about an hour before you should head to the station," she says. "If you want to look something else up, just ask the librarian, or, if you prefer, you can go to one of the private chambers on the left side and meditate and pray."
2012-11-26, 07:43 PM
Ko will take a look inside the second book
OOCHow are we going to do this? I'm sure you don't want to write anovel for us, so summary, or do we ask for what we want?
2012-11-26, 08:14 PM
I'll summarize a bit about what you read in the book and give you a bonus to any knowledge checks this adventure according to how long you spend studying each book.
2012-11-26, 09:14 PM
Ko sits and reads as much of the book as he can before the hour's up.
2012-11-27, 12:58 AM
Aria smiles at Ul'Lisu. The difference between an effective agent and a dead agent is information. I'll look over the one on the region's religions, if it pleases you, maybe if nothing else get an idea of what I can use as leverage in negotiations, if the opportunity presents itself.
Aria spends as long as she can on the book.
2012-11-27, 02:13 AM
Ari frowns. "I suppose this means I'll be reading up on geography. Better to know the field at least."
Ari sighs mildly then sits next to Ko and Aria and begins reading as fast as she can.
2012-11-27, 01:43 PM
Aria smiles warmly at Ari. She hands the book to her companion, saying I'm more useful with geography than religion anyway, do you care to trade, Ari?
2012-11-27, 05:09 PM
"Happily, if you don't mind!"
Ari offers Aria the geography book.
2012-11-29, 02:29 AM
"It is time you should start heading to the station," Ul'Lisu points out, though it hardly feels like you've had the time to research. You quickly share with each other what you have discovered.
Ko explains how the demons rose out of Khyber to slowly step out on to the surface of the world in the First Age, when dragons and the couatls were where the dominate life. The three races were eventually entangled in a war for a thousand years. This war came to an end when the couatls sacrificed almost their entire race to trap the demons in Khyber, using a power believe to be not unlike that of the Silver Flame.
In more modern times, the book detailed known Rakshaka plots. No one is sure how many Rakshakas current exist on Eberron, but they, known collectively as the Lords of Dust, have often left the Demon Wastes to hide in other societies, slowly hatch plots over decades or even centuries. The book focuses on their plots involving the Silver Flame, where they have tried to mislead, deceive, or even seduce both members of the Chruch and those around them.
Aria read about the layout of the demon wastes. Much of it is barren and filled with ancient ruins, and the barbarian tribes, call the Carrion Tribes, are constantly at war with one another over resources. These tribes worship the demons trapped in the earth, openly and unashamed. Along with the Carrion Tribes and the Lords of Dust that rule over them, there are also nine night hags that live in the wastes. These night hags are more pragmatic than the barbarians or the Rakshaka, it seems, as they are often an outsider's best source of information and help, for a price.
Ari explains how the barbarian tribes draw power from the demons. Their shamans can summon and manifest powers not unlike those granted to followers of true deities. Because of their close proximity to demons, some barbarians are born with innate cleric-like powers. These barbarians are often given special position in their clans as they are seen as being “blessed” by the demons.
The book also addresses the beliefs of the Ghaash’kala, who worship Kalok Shash, the Binding Flame. The book goes on at length comparing these beliefs with the Silver Flame. The author speculates that the two are the same, although the tenets and followers of the Silver Flame are more peaceful than the much more militaristic and violent followers of Kalok Shash.
As you wrap up your research and prepare to leave, the library doors are thrown open and a large, human man walks in. The light chainmail he wears clicks as he strides over to the desk, his hand resting on the hilt of his sword and a confident smirk on his face. “So these are your little pet project,” he says to Ul’Lisu. “Introduce us.”
“You should watch you tone when speaking to a Cardinal, Reddirk” Ul’Lisu warns.
“Tsk,” Reddirk replies. “An elven Cardinal? You’re just some token put in place to please the non-humans. Ah well, we have been keeping eyes on this group for months. I can probably guess who’s here. Let’s see… the ice girl wearing red and a little gnome putting on airs... how cute. You two must be Arcutia and Aria. Never could keep your names straight.”
He turns to regard Ko , and grins. “And this must be the son of the Siomas. I had such respect for your parents. Such a shame they couldn’t raise their child to righteousness. But, I suppose you don’t actually have their blood though, do you? And of course their poor choice in friends was undoubtedly a bad influence on them.” He glares pointedly at Ul’Lisu.
Ko: +5 Knowledge (History), +2 Knowledge (Arcana), and +2 Knowledge (Religion) for checks concerning the Demon Wastesand it's inhabitants
Ari: +5 Knowledge (Religion), +2 Knowledge (The Planes), and +2 Knowledge (Arcana) for checks concerning the Demon Wastesand it's inhabitants
Aria: +5 Knowledge (Geography), +2 Knowledge (Local), and +2 Knowledge (History) for checks concerning the Demon Wastes and it's inhabitants (also applies to Lore checks on the same)
2012-11-29, 06:22 AM
Ari's eyes lock onto the man and she stands, anger plainly apparent on her face.
"I would do as the cardinal says, mind your tongue - or someone will do it for you."
Intimidate [roll0] C'mon don't make me look like an idiot ><
2012-11-29, 12:48 PM
"Ah, so you show your true colors," Reddirk says, obviously unfazed. "I wonder, how much of that temper is from you and how much comes from that demon. I suppose it doesn't really matter."
"This is a hollowed place," Ul'Lisu interjects. "Not a place to saber rattling. Do you have business with me Reddirk?"
"No. This is a library. I'm here for some... enlightenment," he replies, study each of you in turn.
2012-11-29, 03:30 PM
Ko chuckles. "I wonder how much of your incivility is caused by your character, how much is caused by your upbringing and how much... ah, I'd forgotten. You have no demon to account for your behavior. I apologize." Ko gives a bow, correct to the point of mockery.
2012-11-29, 06:13 PM
Using the 1/day gnome spell-like ability Prestidigitation to generate a the smell of a rank fart originating from the knight, since as a spell-like ability it has no v/s/m components to be noticed. Bluff is in OoC if I need it.
Aria laughs, unphased, but covers her nose and mouth Oh, the mighty warrior of light chides the soldiers in the ****! You shouldn't worry about my airs if you can't even control your own! She backs away quickly. Disgustedly, she says loudly Oh by the Flame, I can taste it!
2012-11-29, 06:55 PM
Meanwhile Zal looks around the station, looking for someone interesting to approach. He is aware his social skills need honing, and conversation with a fellow waiting passenger seems a prudent first step.
2012-11-30, 01:10 PM
Reddirk frowns. "Well," he says, "I've gotten what I've needed. We will meet again." The paladin turns around and marches out of the libaray.
Ul'Lisu sighs. "I wish I could say Reddirk is a rarity," she comments, "but I'm afraid that isn't true. The church and the nation are predominately human, and racism is one of the evils we have yet to purge. Of course our project with Rat's Flames has it own opponents.
"Come, I'll see you out of the Cathedral. You have a train to catch."
The elven Cardinal walks you out through the courtyard and to the main gates, where you part ways. You make your way down the winding path from the Cathedral to the southern bridge, crossing it to the Lightning Rail station on the other side.
The four of you board your train and settle in for the day's journey. Seven hours later you arrive in Sigilstar where you transfer to the newly constructed line headed to Sigil in Audair. The train stops at the border and all of the passengers are inspected. You notice the Thrane passengers seem to receive extra scrutiny, even harassment. The Aundair agents frown at your Crye traveling papers, but let you through with little hassle, simply warning you not to cause trouble.
You spend the night in Passage before boarding your finally train, arriving in Fairhaven. You stay there is brief, however, as you rush to catch the caravan headed to Otharaunt.
You find the caravan consists of six wagons, three for military personal, two for cargo, and one for the small group of passengers, all pulled by a team of horsed. As far as you can tell, there is little difference between the military and passenger wagons. Stepping inside your wagon convinces you there are not differences.
The wagon is fitted with two wooden benches affixed to the sides of the wagon, and nothing more. Two other people already sit inside, bot dressed in the ostentatious Aundair fashions. By the look of them you assume they are merchants of some kind. After you settle in, one more person entered the wagon, a man dressed in much simpler clothing, though in Thrane his outfit might be fit for a humble bard, if not for the stains that mark the man as a laborer.
Shortly after the wagon rattles as the caravan begins its journey. The two merchants often consult a small pack of scrolls they carry with them as they discuss numbers and inventories with each other. The laborer soon falls asleep and seems obvious to the world.
At first the wagon rolls smoothly across the well maintained roads, but after a couple hours it is forced to depart for a much more turbulent route through the countryside. The two merchants start to add complaints about the bumps in their endless discussion, but otherwise seem unfazed. The laborer shifts about a little more, but remains alseep.
The sun is dipping low in the sky when a loud crash is heard outside. You hear the soldiers shouting for a moment as the wagon comes to a halt. Sticking your head outside you see that one of the other wagons has broken an axle and soldiers are filing out of it. One of the commanders sticks his head into you wagon.
"Sorry for the inconvenience," he says, "But I'm afraid we are going to have to seat soldiers in this wagon. It is going to be crowded, but it won't be much further." Before the merchants can voice their complaints, the commander ducks out, shouting orders to his men. Soon the wagon's seats are filled and another line of soldiers stand in the middle.
"Well, this is about as exciting as it has gotten lately, though I hope I'll see more up on the coast," one of the soldiers remarks to Ari. He looks over the four of you. "Looks like you're all ready for some action too. So, you four mercenaries? Fortune hunters? Or just a group spoiling to fight some barbarians?"
2012-11-30, 02:45 PM
Masking her accent, Aria says to the soldier, hesitating as if having trouble admitting, We're, uh, we're... refugees. From Cyre. She draws a deep breath, and continues This is apparently where we're being "assigned". I guess they figure it's less soldiers they need to train if they just drop off combat-ready civilians at a contested border. She looks around curiously and quickly adds, Hey, what do you guys know about what's going on? I know having the Demon Wastes as neighbors isn't exactly Happyfuntown, but don't they keep garrisons at full strength? Was there a big fight, or should we be expecting one, or what?
2012-11-30, 03:28 PM
"Demon Wastes? So you believe the rumors then?" the soldier replies, trying to reach an itch under his helmet. "I, mean, they have to have some truth to them right? Just look at all the troops headed to the fort. The Demon Wastes coming across the bay. Who'd have thought of it?
"I mean they aren't exactly our neighbors. Across the water or over the Reaches. Otharaunt is there in case something like this did happen, but they mostly keep an eye on the Reaches. And it's not like the druids give us lots of problems. They mostly keep to themselves and their furry friends and leaves and whatnot."
The solider gives up on getting his fingers under his helmet and takes it off. A tangled mess of red hair tumbles out of helmet as he pulls it off. "Really should have cut my hair before I reported. Makes wearing my helmet that much more uncomfortable. Well, I'll have to take a knife to it when we next stop I guess. Umm.. name Reng, by the way."
2012-11-30, 03:30 PM
Seat? Zal offers one of the standing soldiers, doing his best to keep Breland off his tongue. He's gotten bored with sitting all day.
2012-11-30, 04:02 PM
I'm Alara, among other names. You know how we are, Aria says, smiling. I don't know if I believe it, I just heard back at the Fairhaven station that might have something to do with it, she says with a shrug. She shakes her head and continues, We didn't have time to really find anything out before we got pushed onto the train, but I can't imagine why they'd be sending soldiers to a stocked garrison if they didn't expect a fight. Can you fill us in? What rumors exactly are going around?
2012-11-30, 05:52 PM
Ko looked up from reading a book of his own. He'd taken on the form of a male elf before coming near the train, not particularly good looking (for an elf). "I'd certainly be interested in hearing the rumors. We barely know what we're getting into." Ko was careful not to let a lie slip from his tongue; there was more to deception than bluffing.
2012-11-30, 06:48 PM
"Eh?" Reng replies, looking somewhat dumbfounded. "I'm not sure how much help I'll be for that. Not sure I know much more than you've already heard. The rumors that demons might be leading the humans has everyone on edge. No one's sure what would happen if they started taking land...
"I mean, a war against demon lead savages? Can you imagine fighting something like that? The rules of war would be thrown out the window. And if demons start setting in Aundair? Those fanatics down in Thrane might use it as an excuse to invade. Wouldn't be the first time they've used a holy crusade as an excuse for invasion!
"I mean, that's really it, isn't it? We're being sent up there to try to keep them pushed out to sea. They've just been striking randomly along the coast. No one can quite figure out how or why they are choosing the towns they are. Word is that House Lyrandar might even get involved. Their city is just at the end of the bay, after all, and whipping up a few storms to keep the barbarians' ships grounded or sunk shouldn't be too hard for them. I think."
2012-12-01, 02:50 AM
Aria sits back with her arms and legs crossed. So they've actually been breaking through. Demons to the west, religious nuts to the east and south, and Lyrandar's treacherous seas to the north. I guess that's as good a reason as any to be nervous. She pauses as she idly runs her finger over her choker. I understand Thrane boasts some of the finest demonslayers Khorvaire has to offer. Religious demagoguery aside their military would be helpful, at least if they could be trusted to leave once the job's done.
2012-12-01, 03:27 AM
Ari listens intently to the conversation with Reng, but stubbornly refuses to speak.
2012-12-02, 10:06 AM
"Well if we're naming off enemies, we can't forget Karrnath to the East with their large armies, both living and undead!" Reng adds with a short laugh.
"And I'm sure Thrane knows what it's doing when it comes to fighting demons, but they aren't the only ones. Aundair use to border the Demon Wastes, you know. Here, take a look at these. They once belonged to my great-great grandfather. Or was it great-great-great? Well, might have been both. They were part of a set they used to fight demons, though this all that my side of the family has left. Suppose to help injure the demons and protect you from their mind powers."
He holds out a ring and a dagger, both made from a shimmering silver metal. You instantly reconize it as Flametouched Iron, metal that is only found in Thrane and believed to have been blessed with holy properties from the Silver Flame.
2012-12-02, 01:39 PM
Zal has been listening to the exchange attently.
Nice one he interjects upon seeing the blade.
But if demons are invading, Khorvaire needs to work as one to drive them back.
2012-12-02, 02:02 PM
Aria nods at Zal's words. You know how people are, though. If it doesn't promise them an imminent death it's like pulling the teeth from a dragon's maw to get anybody to cooperate.
2012-12-02, 08:40 PM
"Well let's hope it doesn't come to that," Reng says. "I'm sure we can shove whatever landing they are making right back into the bay!"
There is some shouting outside the wagon for a moment and the wagon suddenly lurches as it unexpectedly picks up speed. The ride becomes rough enough to wake even the laborer, who was still peacefully asleep even with all the bodies pressed inside. The soldier put in charge of the group in your wagon climbs partway out of the wagon to speak with someone.
Pulling himself back in, the soldier announces, "Change of plans! Looks like barbarian ship may be landing in at a fishing village not too far from here! They may be done with with attack by the time we get there, may not! We're to lend assistance however we can! My apologies to the civilians riding with us! We'll make sure you have a guard left with you to keep you safe!"
For all his bravado about his demon slaying ancestors and the strength of Aundair, Reng looks like he is turning green at the thought that he might see combat this night.
You can hear yelling and fires burning as the wagon rolls to a stop. The soldier file out of the wagon and being to for their ranks. Climbing out of the wagon behind them you can see a village in flames just down the hill. Dark forms move around the flames, hunters and victims alike. Behind the smoke and flames you can see three crude boats in the water, larger and more intimidating than the fishing boats tied to the numerous, scattered docks. The barbarians are still here.
As the soldiers begin their hurried march down the hill, one of the officers spots the four of you. "Hmm, you three look like your ready for a fight," he comments. "If you're spoiling for a fight, I have more important things to do that try to stop you. Just stay out of the troops' way."
He gives Ko another look. "You probably should stay in the wagon with the others. You'll be safer there." The officer doesn't wait for a response, but dashes down the hill to catch up with the marching troops.
2012-12-02, 09:01 PM
Ko has a wry smirk as he rises and addresses the other 3. "I will be assisting in the attack." He finds a secluded area and shifts form into that of an unassuming human, heavier and stockier than his elf form. "In case we need to infiltrate this group of enemies later." He says by way of explanation for his changing shape.
2012-12-02, 09:31 PM
Zal sees Ko's change. Cute he says, and starts sprinting towards the village, trying to catch up with the soldiers.
Edit: Maneuvers Readied
Stance: Island of Blades
1: Sapphire Nightmare Blade
2: Moment of Perfect Mind
3: Shadow Blade Technique
4: Mind Over Body
5: Shadow Garrote
2012-12-03, 02:46 AM
Aria draws and loads her crossbow saying flatly, Onward to glory. She follows with a few brief melodious utterances and fleeting gestures and follows the others.
Expeditious retreat for +30 movement speed for 6 minutes.
2012-12-03, 03:22 AM
Ari wordlessly follows the others, drawing her massive greatsword as she runs, and while not easy to see she is smiling.
2012-12-05, 02:33 PM
Sped by her magic, Aria quickly passes by the troops, turning to the East and disappearing into the town. The Aundair troops continue their charge down the hill, toward the center of town, where most of the most and fire seems to be concentrated and, beyond that, the three barbarian vessels.
Speed on by your magic you quickly pass up the troops and turn toward the East side of town, where some kind of tower can be seen over the roofs of the other buildings. As you approach the building, you discover it is a small church, the tower its bell tower, though fitted with wide platform and what appears to be a large lantern, likely to serve as a kind of light house for fishing boats caught in turbulent weather. Villagers are pushing inside and wave you inside before slamming the doors shut, quickly moving pews and other furniture to barricade it.
You quickly find the stairs just inside the door and moves up to the top of the bell tower. From there you would be able to see most of the village if it wasn't for the smoke in the air. The Aundair troops are entering the edge of the village and moving toward the center of town, where a number of barbarians are apparently barricading themselves in anticipation of the charge. It seem they had warning of the troops arrival. Father to the west you can see barbarians moving around the undamaged portion of the village, farther back from the water then the middle group. With no fires burning in that area, the Aundair troops may not be aware of them.
Close to you, about a dozen barbarians are charging up to the church.
2012-12-05, 04:59 PM
Pardon! Thanks! Aria says without stopping as she barrels through the doors. With a dexterous flourish, she incants once again on her way up the stairs, and appears at the top of the bell tower with two identical copies of herself, moving and speaking in unison such that they all seem real.
The Arias look down on the charging wastelanders and shout at them as with one voice, So be it! Sacrifice yourselves on our altar, wasteland vermin! Approach this hallowed ground and shed your blood for your flaccid impotent demon gods on the talons of our pets! The Arias incant and gesture wildly, and three shimmering portals appear above the church, through which three massive owls the size of ogres flutter silently, landing on the roof with audible crunches, wings splayed and chests pumping, and cooing deeply and aggressively, waiting for the order to attack.
2012-12-06, 09:47 PM
Zal frowns as Aria is lost sight of, but keeps running towards the docks. Stay close he tells his companions, ready to attack the fist demon that comes into range.
2012-12-07, 02:11 AM
Ari follows Zal.
2012-12-07, 08:03 AM
Understood. Ko says, chasing after.
2012-12-07, 01:19 PM
You can hear shouted orders to form up and the sounds of fighting. The Aundair troops are starting to encounter barbarians. Taking a look to the left, where Aria had run off to, you can see three giant owls perched on the building with the spire.
As you follow the Aundair troops, something catches your eye to the left. Glancing over you see a group of barbarians moving toward you from the building there, obviously circling in to attack the troops from the rear
The barbarians quickly come to a stop, a few falling over each other as they do so. They crouch down and take up defensive postures as they take in your display. You see one of barbarians pointing at the church wall hurriedly whisper something to a large human who appears to have small horns growing out of his temples.
The horned human hits the man speaking to him and shouts, "Coward! I don't care if this ain't the church we're after! Turmfarr never runs from a fight!" Despite his words, however, he takes a step back. "Raszulfil won't be happy if we don't find those Flamers, though... leave these summoners in their holy nest!" Turmfarr spits and leads his group away from the church.
2012-12-07, 04:51 PM
Ambush! From the left! he cries out and turns to Ari and Ko.
Any plans? he asks, scanning for the most intimidating one of that band.
2012-12-07, 05:13 PM
Ko turns his head to the left and calmly sticks out his left hand, fingers spread, while reaching into a pouch with his right. Allow me. As the barbarians near, Ko's silvery strings stream from his outstretched fingertips. They stick to barbarian's and buildings alike, bleaching almost immediately after contact.
ActionFirst, I'm rolling initiative
Once my turn rolls around (or immediately if you're doing this battle ad hoc) I'll cast web (http://www.d20srd.org/srd/spells/web.htm) on the barbarians and try to trap as many as possible.OOCHow do you rule on "interaction"? Some DM's say if you see an illusion you get a save, others say you have to touch it. I'd like to know if I recognize Aria's illusion for what it is.
2012-12-09, 11:39 AM
With their advanced spotted, the barbarians rush forward, half of them headed toward your group, the others hurrying their advance to the south. Their rushed charge brings several of them directly into Ko's spells as sticky strands fill the gap between houses.
I hope it's pretty self explanatory. Your markers are the same color as your speaking color, the barbarians are in green. Barbarians 3 & 4 are stuck in the web.
Let's get some initiatives and actions!
On the norther edge of the village, you see that your fellow Harbingers have spotted the barbarians trying to sneak up behind the Aundair troops and have split their advance. Half of them charge the Harbingers while the others charge the soldiers. The commotion has caught the attention of the Aundarians, however, and a group of soldiers turns to meet the barbarians.
A few fights are starting to break out in the center of town as the two groups crash into one another.
You can see the barbarians lead by Turmfarr moving around the buildings around the church, alternatively keeping a worried eye on your illusions and kicking in doors or windows to search inside a building.
You hear footsteps coming up the stairs behind you and quickly glancing through the open trap door, you see a man, obviously a priest, and two elderly women heading up.
2012-12-09, 01:27 PM
Ari turns to face the barbarians and rushes into the middle of them, bringing her massive blade down on the nearest.
Rolling for Granted Manuevers:
Maneuver 1 [roll1]
Maneuver 2 [roll2]
Manuever 3 [roll3]
Manuevers Readied List:
1 - Revitalizing Strike
2 - Stone Bones
3 - Vanguard Strike
4 - Leading the Attack
5 - Foehammer
6 - Roll Again
If any rolls above are duplicates I'll reroll them in the next post, which will also contain my action
2012-12-09, 01:32 PM
Ari will Charge barbarian #5 using a normal charge attack, using a swift action to enter Iron Guard's Glare stance, making adjacent enemies suffer a -4 to hit against anyone except me. Enemies are aware of the effect.
Attack Roll: [roll0]
Damage if it hits: [roll1]
Also due to Ari's gloryborn armor, she only suffers -1 to AC this round instead of -2.
2012-12-09, 01:52 PM
Good job, Aria, you separated from the group without even saying why, truly a gem of tactical brilliance, she says chidingly with a hand's worth of fingertips on her temple. When she sees the people coming up the stairs she calls down to them Ladies and sir! Is there any way I can be of service?.
2012-12-09, 03:46 PM
Shadow Garotte: RTA vs #1 [roll0] dealing [roll1] and also flatfooted until next turn unless he makes a fort save DC14.
Swift action to change stance to Child of Shadow, which gives him concealment as long as he moves 10 feet
Move to E.5x5.5
Zal sees Ari run off, charging at the barbarians. Just you and me Wizard he says, shifting the balance of his feet and crouching, making his shadow seem to flutter and crawl onto him. Swinging his sword he slices a he slices a ribbon from Ko's shifting shadow, hurling it at a hulking brute's throat. He steps in its direction, careful to keep himself between Ko and the barbarians.
2012-12-10, 07:06 PM
"What in Khyber is going on... Brightness be!" one of the women exclaims when she sees the illusions on the rooftop.
"They're not real," the priest assures her. "I assume this is your handy work, lady gnome. It certainly explains the lack of barbarians beating on our doors"
Regaining her composure teh first woman pushes her way to the front of the railing, looking out over the town. "Where are they? What is happening to my town? What do they want?" she demands.
The priest sighs. "This is Ostern, our village elder. I'm Bartell, the minister at this church," the priest explains. He glances back at the other woman. "And this is Thiel, my... assistant." You get the feeling that "assistant" is hiding more than something awkward or embarrassing with Thiel.
"And who might you be?" Ostern demands, turning to you. "I don't remember anyone of your stature around here before. What do you know about these invaders?"
Waiting to see if Ko has an action for this round.
2012-12-10, 07:31 PM
Thank you for your assistance. Says Ko, politely. His "shadow" detaches, moving into position to block any route to Ko that Zal could not cover. Ko himself casts another spell, grease, placing it in a 10ft. square that includes barbarians 1 & 2.
2012-12-10, 10:23 PM
One of the barbarians in the north lets out a roar and points his club toward your group, urging them to charge. Ari springs forward to meet him, slashing her great sword across the barbarian's chest, carving through the armor of hide and bones to bite into the flesh and bone underneath. The barbarian roars again as he staggers back from the blow.
In the south, another of the barbarians growls as he tears his way through Ko's web. He is just about to pull free of the magical restraints when the shadow flung by Zal catches him around the neck. His raging roar turns into struggled gurgles and he fights against the web's strands to reach is throat.
The barbarians in the web behind the choking warrior struggle to move forward, but none of them are able to press forward.
The remaining two barbarians charge forward from the north, moving in on Ari. One manages to reach the crusader and swings his heavy club at the woman, but the blow is wild and misses Ari by a hand's length.
Ko's grease spell splashes over the barbarians in the front of web, further fueling their anger at the predicament. Ko's familar moves to take up a defensive position between the closest barbarian and its master.
Barbarians 2 and 6 moved first, the others moved after Ari and Zal.
Changed Ari's charge from 5 to 6 because of 6's movement to the before her charge.
2012-12-11, 12:03 AM
Swift change my stance to Island of Blades granting myself and any allies that are adjacent to any enemy I'm adjacent to flanking vs that enemy. In this case 5 & 6 to me and Ari.
Move to E+,4 (the square just right of E,4)
Standard: Sapphire Nightmare Blade to 6
Pre attack: [roll0] concentration check vs 6's AC, if it succeeds, creature is flatfooted and takes [roll1] extra damage if the attack hits. If it misses the attack roll takes a -2 penalty
Attack: [roll2] dealing: [roll3]+[roll4] sneak attack
Zal sees Ari being surrounded by the barbarians. Torn between following up against the garrotted brute and preventing his teammate from being flanked. Changing his stance he heads over to her side, examining their opponents' combat style. He lunges beneath Arcutia's blows to jab his blade into his foe's side.
2012-12-11, 12:48 AM
The owls are real enough to them, Aria and her copies flatly reply, nodding toward the fighting but looking with some annoyance at Ostern. They say to the woman calmly, My name is Alara. I was with the caravan that brought the soldiers. My companions and I were unwilling to allow your village to be obliterated in the name of cowardice and our own safety. The thugs ripping up your town are from the Demon Wastes and judging from their words they're here looking for some priests. I'm here now because I don't want to see any more death. Any good leader in your situation should be upset, but to eschew a civil tone with those who want to help you is not the most graceful tactic. Right now your town needs you to be angry but focused so you can help. For example, it seems these cretins are without magical support. Sending a horde of such barbarians against even a handful magic-users is like throwing stones at a trebuchet, so what I need from you right now is to know if any spellcasters live in this town, and where they might be found if they're still alive.
2012-12-12, 03:16 PM
Rolling for maneuver granted:
1 - Stone Bones
2 - Foehammer
2012-12-12, 03:21 PM
Ari presses the attack, spinning with the greatsword and allowing it's momentum to carry her into a different barbarian with great force.
Attacking Barbarian #6 with Foehammer (Enemy gets no damage reduction and I do +2d6 damage).
Attack (including Flanking) - [roll0]
Damage if hit [roll1] - Additional damage for Foehammer [roll]2d6/roll]
2012-12-12, 03:22 PM
woops, second damage roll got botched, though it looks like I probably missed anyway >< natural 1
On the off chance that isn't an auto-miss or a disaster waiting to happen, here's the fixed secondary damage roll [roll0]
2012-12-15, 09:04 PM
Ko decides to seperate the barbarians. He makes a few gestures and murmuring seemingly to himself. A wall of smoke springs up, obscuring the struggling barbarians.
ActionWall of Smoke starting at barbarian's 5 and 7, continuing downwards 25 ft. (Basically a wall 30 ft. by 10 ft.). DC 14 Fortitude save to avoid being nauseated if they pass through it.Ko finishes up by moving diagonally 3 squares down-right and 1 square down.
Ko's familiar moves to flank Barbarian 6 without provoking an attack of opportunity, and lashes out at him.
2012-12-16, 12:01 PM
The injured barbarian lets loose a feral roar and makes a powerful swipe at Ari. Seeing that the raider's aim is true, the crusader turns to accept the blow on the back of her shoulder, avoiding a most devistating blow but staggering the warrior. Ari's counter swings wide and misses her opponent.
Zal darts up underneith Ari's greatsword and sinks his shortsword into the barbarian's side. The greatclub slides off Ari's back and follows its wielder to the ground.
The companion of the fallen raider brings his club down on the swordsage, narrowly missing the warrior's head by smacking the top of Zal's retreating sword arm. The nearby barbarian also swings at Zal, but the swordsage easily sidesteps the blow.
The raiders trapped in the web all manage to pull free, pushing their way forward. The front two barely make it two steps before they loose their footing on the greased ground, slipping down to be entangled in the sticky strands of the web again. The other two learn from their example, however, and fight their way through the web to the side of the alley.
Ko's wall of smoke divides the battlefield and he retreats to the south. His familar sneaks into attack the barbarains near Ari and Zal, but the elemental is unable to score a hit.
To match Squirrel's natural 1, the barbarians rolled two natural 20's on their hits. Neither one confirmed though.
Ari takes 5 damage.
Zal takes 6 damage.
Ostern turns away from you to look out over the village again. "Soldiers, huh," she says, her voice betraying the discomposure she is trying to hide. "Guess the lack of fresh seafood finally forced the Queen to act, did it?
"Look, we're just a simple fishing village, we have little of value to offer anyone. We have a few retired soldiers looking for a more peaceful life, but anyone who knows how to cast magic can find a more comfortable life in the cites. The only two we have who can cast spells of any sort are our two preists." She waves a hand at the pair at the top of the stairs.
Bartell glances at the woman behind him before asking, "You think they are looking for some priests? Why? We're just simple ministers. What little magic we are granted would hardly be a threat to anyone."
2012-12-16, 07:42 PM
Full attack on 5
Shortsword: [roll0]: [roll1]
Dagger: [roll2]: [roll3]+[roll]1d6[roll]
5'step to E,4.5
Zal stares as the wall of fog erupts around him. He thrusts his weapons in quick succession against the invader from the demon-wastes. Leaping backwards as he pulls his dagger back.
2012-12-16, 07:43 PM
damn, double posted. ignore this one
2012-12-17, 03:46 PM
Ari recovers from her poor swing and attempts to follow it up with a quick reverse in direction to strike with the other edge of her blade.
Last readied maneuver is granted: Stone Bones.
Ari has 5 damage in her Delay Damage pool, so she's going to use Stone Bones this round to grant herself DR 5/Adamantine. (Assuming she hits, if she doesn't hit the damage will go through at the end of the round.)
Attacking #5 - [roll0] (including Flanking from Zal's Island of Blades, and +1 from having 5 damage in the delay damage pool)
Damage Roll if it hits - [roll1] (Including +1 from Delay Damage pool)[/spoiler]
2012-12-18, 03:23 PM
Aria looks out over the village with concern, impatient, and returns her gaze to the priests and village matron She speaks quickly and energetically. Even a simple minister wields divine authority as evidenced by the power granted to you for your righteousness. What moral authority can these brutes claim? Intimidation by demonic forces? What example can their martyrs set? The tide of wars have been turned more than once by the inspiration of lesser folk than you or I, and clever use of magic will always trump dumbly swinging bits of broken tree, so what have you got ready to cast?
2012-12-18, 10:53 PM
Ari's backswing catches the barbarians under his chin, snpping his head back with a crack. The raider tumbles to the ground and is still.
Zal snaps his blades out, scoring two deadly blows on the last of the savage trio, and leaps back.
The raiders in the southern alley continue to stuggle against Ko's web, but are held fast by the sticky strands.
These barbarians can't roll above 10 to save their lives. :smallconfused:
We'll skip Ko this round and promote him to intitative 21 next round.
"A few minor prayers of curing and a blessing are all I have prepared," Bartell reples. "I suppose the troops might make use of my blessing, but the townsfolk... they are not prepared for anything like this."
Thiel shakes her head. "All I have left are minor healing prayers. But...
"I think we can trust this gnome," Bartell assures her.
"In my meeting house," Thiel continues, "there I have a few items, scrolls and such, that might be of use. We were more concerned with getting the villagers into the church than retreiving them."
"I believe they may have found your meeting house," Ostern says with a sigh, pointing to a new pillar of smoke snaking into the sky between the church and the shoreline.
2012-12-19, 12:13 AM
Though she appears somewhat deflated at sight of the smoke plume, the still-triplicate voices of Aria are filled with resolve. If it'll help the village we've got to get there before the wastelanders burn them all up. Which one is the meeting house?
2012-12-19, 01:43 AM
Action:Full Round Action to restore maneuvers.
1: Shadow Blade
2: Cloak of Deception
3: Shadow Garotte
4: Mind over Body
5: Sapphire Nightmare Blade
5' step to E,5
With a sigh Zal moves away, readiying himself for a second bout of fighting, hearing the barbarians through the fog.
2012-12-19, 08:28 AM
Ko stays put, calling out "My magic can be dangerous for you as well, so try not to touch the things I created!"
OOCI think we can defeat these guys with no more expenditure on my part, so Ko's sitting it out until needed. Holding action.
At his gesture, Ko's familiar transforms into a whirlwind (http://www.d20srd.org/srd/monsters/elemental.htm#airElemental) only 10 ft. high. It quickly closes the distance, sucking up the wall of smoke in the process before going right into the middle of the barbarians.
OOCRight between barbarian 4, 2 and 1. creatures within 5 ft. of the whirlwind are covered in dust flying around, and have concealment vs. anything within 5 ft. This should affect both us attacking them and them attacking us.
The whirwind sucking up the smoke was just a way to dissipate it now that it won't really help. But it would be interesting if it actually had some kind of effect; it's up to you since it's not within the rules.
2012-12-19, 02:44 PM
Ari grins and charges through the smoke, ignoring Ko's warning. She's clearly enjoying this.
Ari is charging #3, using a swift action en-route to use Burning Blade to deal an extra 1d6+4 fire damage if I hit. AC is at -1 rather than -2 due to Gloryborn armor. Damage is at +1 due to Gloryborn sword.
Attack roll: [roll0]
Damage roll [roll1] Fire damage [roll2]
2012-12-19, 02:45 PM
Forgot my fortitude save! [roll0]
2012-12-21, 09:30 AM
The barbarians continue to struggle against the strands at the smoke disappears and reveals their fallen kin. Two of the barbarians manage to tear themselves loose. One, the largest of the four, finds himself slipping on the grease, finding himself entangled in the web once more. The second barbarians finds a flaming sword waiting for him.
Ari's blade snaps through the air, lighting the web on fire before carving into the raider inside. With a roar of pain and anger, the barbarian tumbles to the ground, strands of flaming web wrapping around him.
Large barbarian is #2, btw.
Thiel considers for a moment. "I'll take you there," she says at last. "Some of my faithful will come with us. They aren't warriors, but they will insist."
Five villagers join with you downstairs as Thiel leads you to the back of the church. Peeking out the back door to make sure it is clear, the seven of you move out into the streets and head south.
You make the short distance quickly and soon hear the barbarians in front of Thiel's meetinghouse. "We found it," one of them says. Peeking around the corner you can see the speaker holding up a flat, silvery wedge, about as long as a short sword, by with no handle or hilt. Turmfarr, the horned barbarian nods and takes the shard. A third barbarian steps out of the building with a bulging sack.
"Sound the horn. We're done here," Turmfarr orders. With the sounding of the horn, the trio head down the road toward the water and their boats.
2012-12-21, 04:45 PM
Move: Go to G.5,6, tumble [roll0] to avoid AoO. Balance vs Grease[roll1]
Standard: Shadow Blade at 1, flanking with the familiar
Attack roll: [roll2] or [roll3] :taking the lower
Damage: [roll4] (+[roll5]cold if lower result is picked)
Zal sprints towards the skirmish blades at the ready. He ducks and tumbles into position between two of the barbarians. He stands on the oiled floor, ready to attack. His sword arm thrusts forward shadowy echoes of it threatening the barbarian as his blade seeks blood.
2012-12-21, 06:11 PM
Oh that is just so not going to happen, Aria says lightly, and follows the invaders. When they're within the required 90 feet she'll start singing a ballad in praise of swift and decisive action in war, since that seems like to appeal to them.
Using bardic music for fascinate. Perform [roll0] is the DC.
If they're successfully fascinated, suggestion (DC 17 will) for them to put down the goods before they leave.
2012-12-23, 01:23 AM
Having finished her previous foe, Ari turns to face the larger barbarian nearby. She brings her blade high overhead then brings it down attempting to split the big man down the middle.
Ari is making a normal attack.
Attack Roll [roll0]
Damage Roll [roll1]
2012-12-27, 11:14 AM
Ari and Zal continue to tear through the raiders, who struggle against Ko's web to no avail. One more barbarian falls, while the largest of the trio continues to fight despite Ari's attack.
Yep, the barbarians continue to fail at their attempts against the web. I can probably guess how this next round will go, most likely the last.
As you chase the barbarians, it seems at first that they are too busy retreating to listen to your music. Finally one of them notices the music and turns to look and is captivated by your music. The other two pause to see why their companion has stopped and also end up entranced by your song.
The barbarian give in to your suggestion, dropping the sack at his feet. Your control over them is broken however, when the villagers accompany you rush up behind you, armed with knives, fishing spears, and makeshift clubs.
"It's the spell casters," one of the barbarians snorts, taking a step back.
"Go," Turmfarr orders as his black mist starts to swirl around the horns and hands. As the other two barbarians turn and flee, the black mists move from Turmfarr and collect in the air, condensing into a terrifying form: a severed head dangling a tentacles from the chin and neck, a twisted face full of pain and hate, and supported in the air by a pair of bat-like wings. "Hold them off," Turmfarr says to the creature in Infernal before he follows his underlings, carrying the sliver wedge with him, but leaving the bag behind.
Although you have never seen the creature Turmfarr has summoned, you recognize it from an old legend you once read. It is called a vargouille, and once a mob of them were loosed on a town on the eastern side of the Kingdom of Galifar, where their terrifying shrieks paralyzed the towns folks while they imparted on their their horrifying kisses, starting a slow process that changed the citizens into vargouilles. The Silver Flame lead a small army of Galifar troops to destroy the nest of demons the town became, and many of the soldiers fell to their vargouilles' poison or cursed kisses.
2012-12-27, 12:11 PM
ActionFull attack on 2:
Shortsword: [roll0] Damage: [roll1]
Dagger: [roll2] Damage: [roll3] [roll4]
Zal thrusts his blades at the nearest foe, eager to be done with this skirmish and press on to cast the barbarians out.
2012-12-28, 03:41 AM
Aria draws her crossbow with an agitated sigh. Back to hell, fiend, she shouts angrily, and looses her bolt at the loathsome beast.
Attack [roll0], [roll1] if it hits.
Delicious natural 1's. lol
2012-12-29, 07:14 PM
Seeing the big man remain standing, Ari tries again!
2013-01-02, 08:04 PM
The whirling blades of Ari and Zal make quick work of the barbarians trapped in Ko's web. No more barbarians present themselves from the east.
From the direction of the Aundair troops the sounds of battle begin to subside. An Aundair rally cry is heard followed by triumphant cheers. You can just make out cries from the barbarians and then a throaty, growling voice above them all, yelling some thing in an unknown language. The victory cries some to a uncertain end before giving way to panicked yells and the sounds of weapons dropped in retreat.
You shot goes wide and missed the Vargouille. The grotesque creature hovers there for a moment before it opens its mouth of jagged teeth and looses a piercing shriek. The villagers behind you cower down in fear, dropping their simple weapons.
OOC: Make a DC 12 Fortitude check or be paralyzed by fear for 4 rounds.
2013-01-02, 10:00 PM
Without a word, Aria loads and releases another bolt at the creature.
Attack [roll0]; damage if it connects [roll1]
2013-01-03, 01:30 AM
Killer! exclaims Zal, pleased, sweating.So where'd the gnome get herself to?
2013-01-03, 10:35 AM
She did not say, and I do not know her well enough to guess. He shakes his head. I cannot find her. We either remain here and assist the men in front of us, or run searching for her with no clue as to her location. He pauses, glancing at his shadow. Or both. Kias! Find Aria. The dark air elemental shoots straight up into the air and begins searching, at first glance a dark cloud, or smoke.
2013-01-03, 11:56 AM
Hah! I like how you think wizard! he tells Ko, looking around for the soldiers. That sounds like trouble... he says, hearing the panic starting off towards the Aundarian soldiers.
2013-01-03, 06:05 PM
Ari follows Zal closely, ready to back him up.
2013-01-04, 02:21 AM
Ko' familiar flys off over the roofs in search of Aria as the three of you hurry toward the center of the village.
Soon you see a Aundair troop stumbling towards you, struggling with his helmet. He falls face-down as he finally pulls the helmet free, revealing an unmistakable tangle of red hair. Reng weakly tries to push himself off the ground, but he hardly lets his face out of the dirt before his arms give way and he falls with a grunt.
Farther away, you see other Aundair troops laying the ground, leading against building, or trying to stumble away.
The bolt strikes true, but isn't enough to bring down the small demon. The creature swoops forward, snapping at you with it's twisted teeth. You easily twist out of the way, but the creature sticks close to you, poisonous spit dripping from its lips.
2013-01-04, 09:54 AM
Just die, dammit! I've fought more threatening moths in my parents' attic! She drops her crossbow and draws her sword, attacking the monster once more.
Attack roll [roll0] damage if it hits [roll1]
2013-01-04, 11:48 AM
Zal sees the soldier collapse. Hey red, you good? he asks dropping to his side. Ari, you're a paladin type, aren't ya? Know any first aid or the like? asks he, giving the soldier a couple pats to see if he is conscious.
2013-01-04, 06:53 PM
Rolling onto his back, you find that the red hair is the only way you would have recognized Reng. His face is swollen, discolored, and covered in buboes.
"Oh, the Crye mercenaries," Reng groans, seeing you. "It's true. Sovereigns help us. It's all true. The barbarians have a demon with them. I don't know what he did... he just... pulled his sword out and people started falling. Ugh. I feel terrible..."
You sword nicks the Vargouille as it flies about you. The creature struggles to stay in the air, dipping low and snapping toward your leg. The creatures teeth bite into your skin and you feel the poison stinging in the wound.
OOC: You take 2 damage and roll a fortitude save
2013-01-04, 11:08 PM
Breathe your last, fiend!
Attack [roll0] if it hits [roll1]
2013-01-05, 12:00 AM
"I can't simply magically heal him I'm afraid... but I can make do with ordinary medical supplies if that will help."
Ari kneels next to Reng and gently sets her sword down behind herself. Then she goes to work to see if she can discover what's wrong with him.
Heal Check [roll0]
2013-01-05, 01:09 AM
Mocker's mitts!exclaims Zal, unwillingly, seeing the other's face. You'll be all right, just as pretty Zal tries to reassure the man, unsure of the truth of his words. But you said there's a demon. How'd your fancy cheese cutter do against it?
2013-01-05, 02:09 PM
"Didn't get a chance to try it out," Reng responds, while Ari does what little she can for him. "When it pulled out that sword and people started falling to... this disease, people panicked. Those of us who tried to stand our ground were blocked by those running. And this disease just kept taking more of us down.
"You three aren't going to run though, are you. I can see it in your faces." He hold the dagger and ring out. "Take them and give those demons a licking. I doubt I'll be using them for a while, and I'm sure my ancestors would rather see them put to use to stop the demons than laying next to a sick man's bed."
Your shadow familar slips back and informs you that Aria is not far away to the North-East. She is apparently protecting a group of villagers from some bat-like creature.
You sword slices into the creature, knocking it to the ground, where it thrashes around as it slowly turns back into black mist and disappates into the breeze.
With the Vargouille banished from Eberron, the villagers are able to move again. Thiel checks that they are alright before hurrying to your side.
"You have quite the brave and noble heart, madam gnome," she says. "Thank you for stopping the barbarians from escaping with what little our congregation has, but I'm afraid I have to ask you to do more. That mirror shard that the barbarian escaped wtih, it is part of a holy relic."
The elderly preistess sighs and begins to dig around in the bag the barbarians dropped. "Are you familar with the Silver Flame's Cathedral in Fairhaven? When Thrane's government was taken over by the Church of the Silver Flame in the Last War, the people of Aundair quickly grew to resent, even hate, the Silver Flame. The anger grew became so intense that the Church was forced to abandon the cathedral. Knowing how difficult it would be to smuggle themselves, let alone artifacts, across the border into Thrane, the priests decided to take the cathedral's most precious and powerful artifact and split it into seven pieces, which were given to congregations here in the north, away from the front lines of the war, for safe keeping.
"I don't know what the barbarians intend to do with it, but I can't imagine it is anything good.
"Here, for saving us in the Sovereign Chruch and for protecting our itmes. They wil do better in your hands than sitting unused in our meeting house." Thiel holds out a potion bottle, a small diamond, and a silver badge.
2013-01-05, 02:19 PM
Kias found Aria to the north-east, fighting. Help her or the soldiers?
2013-01-05, 10:46 PM
Aria beams at Thiel's compliments. While the clergywoman speaks she sheathes her sword and picks up her crossbow. She takes Thiel's gifts with a gracious bow. Thank you, m'Lady, but it's my privilege to help. If these gifts can assist in any way then you can rest well assured that's what they'll do. I suspect my companions and I can have that shard back in no time. Aria looks around briefly, and adds Well, if I can find them. I can't imagine they've gotten themselves killed, anyway.
2013-01-06, 01:00 PM
How is she doing? says Zal, taking the dagger. I'd rather deal with the demon but we are a team. Either way we should pick now.
2013-01-06, 01:56 PM
Ko looks at Zal calmly. "Don't know. I can send Kias to help her and guide her to us, if need be."
2013-01-06, 03:17 PM
Plan. says Zal, twirling the shimmering silvery blade*, admiring how light plays off the metal. He grins, ready for a new confrontation.
Mind over Body
Moment of Perfect Mind
Shadow Blade Technique
Child of Shadow (Stance)
* OOC: is it masterwork?
2013-01-07, 02:24 PM
Masterwork Flame-Touched Iron Dagger: Counts as good aligned for overcoming damage reduction
Ring of Concealed Thought: +10 circumstance bonus to Bluff. +4 to will saves vs effects to read wearer's mind (Read Thoughts, Discern Lies, etc)
Badge of Valor: 3/day +2 to next save vs Charm or Fear till next turn or +1 to bonus from Bardic Music for duration of its effect
Least Iron Ward Diamond: Armor attachment. Grants damage reduction 1/-
Potion of Cure Moderate Wounds
2013-01-07, 06:14 PM
Ko speaks to the soldier as he takes the ring. Thank you for the assistance. I'll return the ring once this matter is finished. He turns to Ari and says Arcutia, would you please get him somewhere out of the way, so he is not trampled or attacked while we're gone? Finally, he speaks to his familiar "Kias! Go to Aria to assist her as needed, and guide her to us once she's free to do so. If she has fallen, return at once."
2013-01-07, 09:46 PM
Kias flies off to the north-east, seeking the bard once again.
"Thanks," Reng says. "I just have to hang on till they get House Jorasco to us. The halflings will have me back on my feet in no time, I'm sure. Sovereigns, it hurts to move."
The villagers do their best to save the remaining meeting house, but there is no controling the fires. As the salvage what they can from it, a dark, cloudy being swoops out of the sky to land infront of you. You've seen a creature like it a few times in the previous months hanging around Ko.
It says something in a language you don't reconize and moves back and forth, seemingly to becon you in its direction.
2013-01-07, 11:23 PM
Aria looks curiously at the creature for a moment, and looks back at the flaming building with a sigh. Be careful everybody, she shouts, you survived a barbarian incursion so don't get killed for some trinkets now! Stay safe! With that, she draws her sword and follows the creature, eyes scanning for hostiles along the way.
2013-01-08, 11:55 PM
While you help Reng move to the side of a building, Ko's familar returns with Aria in tow. A few more soldiers stumble around, but not barbarians. The village is now eerily quiet. For a moment, the sound of the waves is masked only by the sound of burning buildings and the occasional moan from a sick soldier, but soon the sound of splashing begins to reach you from the direction of the coast.
2013-01-11, 09:22 AM
"What's that noise?" Ari draws her sword.
"For some reason I'm not convinced it's just the ocean..."
2013-01-11, 02:33 PM
Aria sighs looking around at the plagued soldiers. I think that might be them leaving, Ari. I heard one of them say they were here to kill some Silver Flame followers, but we stumbled across another group taking a relic. I couldn't get it from them though, and they took off toward the docks. She snaps her fingers and produces a diamond from her jacket pocket. Oh, also I've got this magic rock. It apparently magically softens incoming impacts. I'm not sure who would make best use of it, but I don't think it would serve me very well.
2013-01-11, 03:09 PM
Put it on Ari. Big demon needs killin'. he says, before sprinting towards the docks. That sword of sickness intrigued the assassin.
2013-01-12, 05:53 AM
Ari follows Zal, fire gleaming in her eyes.
2013-01-12, 12:29 PM
You make your way through the center of town, passing by sick and injured soldiers. You spot several injured or fallen barbarians, but you don't spot any inflected with disease.
As you come between the last few buildings before the shore, you can see that the raiders are reboarding their boats, splashing in the water as they push them off of the sand and back into deeper water. One of their three boats appears to have been abandoned due to their losses.
As you come to the last buildings at the end of town, you see, standing at the end of water, a large humanoid. It wears scale mail and a helemt, but you can see its bare arms and covered in orange and black-stripped fur. It glances over its shoulder and, spotting your approach, turns to face you. Beneith the helmet it has a feline face, the scowling, feral face of a tiger.
You reconize the creature as a Zakya, the warrior caste of the Rakshasa.
The demon grips the large sword at its hip and draws out the blade, which seems to be forged from some strange yellow metal. You feel a cold chill run through your bones; your pact with Rat's Flame has acted against a magical effect targeted at those of good alignment.
"What do we have here?" the Zakya says, focusing its yellow eyes on Ko before moving his gaze to take the four of you in. "Not Aundair soliders. Not of nobel intent, I wonder? What do we have here?" The Rakshasa makes no move to attack, but keeps his bastard sword unsheathed at his side.
You sense that the creature just tried to intrude into your mind. You're fairly certian you repeled its attempts.
You quickly think over what research you've done on these creatures. You remember that their thick, furred hide makes the creature nearly impervious to damage, only holy weapons can hope to injure it. However you also remember reading somewhere that their hides are much easier to pierce than to cut.
You know, that like all Rakshasa, the Zakya have several natural spells at their disposal, including the ability to read minds.
2013-01-12, 01:34 PM
You should already know that, zakya. What we have are some concerned citizens of a dead nation not keen on repeating old mistakes. What do you want, and why do you have to kill so many to get it?
2013-01-12, 01:35 PM
Ko looks grim. He says, quietly but loud enough the rakshasa can still hear, I care not who you are but keep your mind out of mine.
2013-01-12, 01:51 PM
Ari doesn't wait for the creature to continue - instead pressing forward to deal with the fiend in her typical blunt fashion.
Ari charges the zakya, attempt to deliver a huge overhand attack to it's forehead.
Attack Roll: [roll1]
Damage if hit: [roll2]
Using a swift action to enter Martial Spirit stance as I go.
Rolling for Maneuvers Granted:
Maneuver 1: [roll3]
Maneuver 2: [roll4]
Maneuver 3: [roll5]
1-2: Revitalizing Strike
3-4: Stone Bones
5-6: Vanguard Strike
7-8: Leading the Attack
Will reroll if any are duplicates.
2013-01-12, 01:52 PM
! Natural 20, woohoo!
Roll to Confirm: [roll0]
Additional damage if confirmed: [roll1]
2013-01-12, 03:30 PM
Zal chuckles as Ari bursts forward and decides to be of aid. There is no way he'd leave a teammate to be eaten by a tiger... or get all the glory for it.
He slings a rope of shadow at the rakhasha's neck, hoping to choke it. He moves around it in a tightening circle, getting his next attacks in position.
Shadow Garotte (RTA): [roll1] [roll2] Fort DC: 14
Child of Shadow: Concealment if I move 10+ft
Move, if with enough room, opposite to Ari in regards to the Rakshasa. Else just adjacent to it.
2013-01-12, 04:53 PM
just realized I rolled 9, 9, 9 for maneuvers, lol... Okay then, rerolling 2 of them...
Insurance policy against any more mishaps:
2013-01-13, 02:25 AM
Aria watches Ari in disbelief for a moment, and tells her teammates with resignation That thing's fur protects it against cuts, try to stab it if you want to injure it. She sighs and begins to sing a vibrant marching song from Zilargo to inspire her comrades.
Sing [roll1] for inspire courage
2013-01-13, 10:28 AM
2013-01-14, 01:16 AM
The Zakya seems about to respond when Ari launched forward to attack. The demon tries to rise its sword in time to defend, but the crusader's great sword crashed down between its golden eyes. Despite the powerful blow, the demon hardly flinches. Uninjured, the Zakya starts to laugh, but chokes instead as Zal's shadow wraps around its throat.
The monster retains its stance, however, and lashes out with its sword. The first blow strikes Ari on the right arm, leaving a nasty gash. Thehe Zakya quickly flips the sword over her head to slash down at the left side of her neck, but the crusader drops low and the sword cuts the air inches from her head and right shoulder.
Ari takes 11 damage.
2013-01-14, 01:37 AM
Zal thrusts his weapons into the demon's fur, taking advantage of the distraction Ari provides.
5' step to (c.5, 4.5)
Shortsword [roll0] Damage:[roll1]+[roll2] sneak attack+2 (14)
Flame-Touched Dagger [roll3] Damage:[roll4]+[roll5] sneak attack+2 (13)
Edit:... oh inspire courage added
2013-01-14, 08:05 AM
Not even acknowledging her wound, Ari winds up for a massive head-lopping blow!
Ari will use Foehammer on the Zakya - Foehammer ignores all forms of damage reduction and deals an additional 2d6 damage if it hits.
Attack [roll0] (including Zal flanking - if for some reason he doesn't count, -2 off that. Also +2 from 10 points in my Delay Damage pool. Thanks Mr. Zakya <^_^>)
Damage if hit: [roll1] Another +2 for Delay Damage Pool, and [roll2] the extra damage from Foehammer.
Also since I'm in Martial Spirit stance, I heal 2 points if I hit - I'll start with the 1 point not in my delay damage pool, then prevent one damage from hitting me next turn.
Oh, and randomly determining next manuever granted:
Stone Bones: 1
Vanguard Strike: 2
2013-01-14, 08:09 AM
I'm a dope, I forgot Inspire Courage in all that... so another +2 to hit and +2 to damage! Woohoo!
2013-01-14, 09:18 PM
Aria continues her song, calmly drawing and loading her crossbow as she does.
2013-01-14, 09:50 PM
Ko moves 30 ft. towards the creature, reciting a simple creation spell. The creature's square and the square directly to the right of it are filled with gleaming caltrops.
CaltropsFor the next 3 rounds, any creature that enters one of these two squares or spends 1 round fighting has an attack made on it. +1 Attack versus the creatures AC minus armor, shield and deflection bonuses (Wearing shoes grants +2 AC). If successful, creature takes 1 point of damage and is reduced to half speed. No saving throw/spell resistance.
2013-01-15, 09:06 PM
Zal's blades dig deep into the demon's back, easily peircing through its hide. The Zakya roars and turns to attack the assassin, but Ari's foehammer crushes into the beast midturn, leaving a bloody gash across side of the demon's face and its shoulder, and pushing the monster to one knee.
The Zakya snarls and he springs up from his crouch, swinging his bastard sword one-handed at Ari. Although Ari blocks the attack with her great sword, the force of the blow leaves her open, and the demon's backswing bites into her side.
As the demon withdraws his blade, he lashes out at Ari one more time with the claws of his free hand, which trail purple and red flames. His claws dig into the fresh wound on her side. A cold chill spreads through Ari as the creature drains her lifeforce into himself. Purple tendrils stretch between Ari's side and the creature's claw, as it steps away from the crusader, limping slighty from the caltrops stuck in its feet.
Ari takes a total of 26 damage. 13 from the sword, 6 from the claw, and 10 from the spell, minus 2 for her DR 1/- and 1 from her stance, unless I've missed something.
Edit: Forgot to move Ko on the map. :smallredface:
2013-01-15, 11:06 PM
Zal winces as the rakhashsa and he stand isolated. Parrying with his sword he thrusts his dagger forward, his focused mind noticing a vulnerability in the fiend's defenses. He drops and rolls backwards before sprinting behind Ari.
Sappire Nightmare Blade: [roll0] concentration vs AC
Attack: [roll1]-2 if concentration fails, vs flatfooted if it succeeds
Tumble 5' to my right to prevent AoO [roll4] move to e,3 (due southeast of Ari)
Child of shadow stance
2013-01-16, 12:11 AM
Still singing, Aria lowers her crossbow and moves closer to Ari.
Moving to (F.5, 3.5)
2013-01-16, 08:14 AM
Gritting her teeth against the pain, Ari presses forward. Rather than step through the caltrops, she sidesteps them and wades through the water to get at the zakya's flank, then attempts to deliver another massive blow.
Ari's going to go two squares to the left, then a square down to get to the zakya. Let me know if any kinds of checks are needed for crossing the water.
Going to use Stone Power at -5 to grant myself 10 Temporary Hitpoints (to absorb the 10 damage in my Delay Damage Pool when they come due, that affect comes into play whether I hit or not), also using Revitalizing Strike to try to heal myself.
Attack Roll: [roll0] (+9 base, -5 for Stone Power, +2 Inspire Courage, +2 Flanking, +2 Delay Damage Pool)
Damage if hit: [roll1]
Healing myself if hit: [roll2] - and another +2 for Martial Spirit.
2013-01-20, 09:42 AM
Zal stabs out at the demon, but the assassin's concentration fails him, and the blow scrapes across the Zakya's armor. Leaping backwards, Zal put distance between the monster and himself.
Undaunted by her injuries, Ari pushes the attack, skirting Ko's caltrops and slash at the beast once more. The Zakya is prepared, however, and easily knocks the blow away, returning it with two solid hits against the Silver Flame warrior with its bastard sword gripped in both hands.
Ari takes 14 damage total. This is reduced by the 10 for her damange reduction pool and DR 1/- for both blows.
It doesn't include the 1 point of damage she shouldn't have taken last round because I only counted her DR for one of the two attacks she was hit with.
2013-01-20, 12:20 PM
With her voice still on the wind, Aria moves beside her injured friend.
Moving to (D, 3.5) with both move actions.
2013-01-20, 12:59 PM
"DIE! JUST DIE YOU FIEND!" Ari screams while making yet another overhand attack.
Ari's manuevers reset this round, so it's time to roll them up again* -
1-2 - Revitalizing Strike
3-4 - Stone Bones
5-6 - Vanguard Strike
7-8 - Leading the Attack
9-10 - Foehammer
Maneuver 1: [roll0]
Maneuver 2: [roll1]
Maneuver 3: [roll2]
Backups in case of Duplicates:
Backup 1: [roll3]
Backup 2: [roll4]
Backup 3: [roll5]
Next post will detail what maneuver I use since I have to wait to see the rolls to know what I have available.
*Speaking of which, I'm going to ask for an oddball houserule regarding this in the OOC thread. Rolling my maneuvers is kind of cumbersome to keep track of since the book doesn't actually provide a system for randomly determining them. I'll explain what I'm thinking in the other thread though.
2013-01-20, 01:03 PM
Alright, Ari is using Revitalizing Strike, no Stone Power:
Attack [roll0] (+2 Flanking, +2 Delay Damage Pool, +2 Inspire Courage)
Damage [roll1] (+2 DDPool and +2 Inspire Courage
Healing on Self (if hit): [roll2] and +2 for Martial Spirit.
Please hit please hit please hit...
2013-01-20, 07:15 PM
Zal sees his friends jump in the fray, and winces as Ari is struck by the rakshasa. He starts to reach for a smokestick before remembering he has no source of fire. Aris! he calls out. Back away from it! backing up before sprinting at the Rakshasa, stepping through the shadow-mage's traps. As he raises his dagger to strike at the tiger-demon weapon, he vanishes.
Move to D,4
Cloak of Deception activated, greater invisibility for a round
Zal's AC vs the caltrops 18+20%miss chance
Zal's attack vs the rakshasa: [roll0], ignore Dex. damage [roll1]
2013-01-21, 10:40 PM
Zal leaps forward, surrounded by a shadowly mist for a brief moment before vanishing from sight. He suddenly reappears with his dagger buried in the Zakya's chest.
The demon growls quietly and looks down at the assassin. The hatred in his eyes begins to lessen as he realizes how badly he has just been stabbed. He begins to shake and raises his sword to stike Zal, but Ari's blow knocks the bastard sword away, barely scratching the creature's hide.
The Zakya doesn't have enough strength to lift the sword again, and it slips from its hand. "I see," it says. "That is what we have here." It seems to smile for a moment before falling backwards.
Looking to the ocean, you see the one of the barbarian ships moving away, oars working steadily. A few hundred feet away, on the aft of the second boat, you see a handful of barbarians preparing to jump from the boat to help their fallen demon leader, but a horned barbarian rises up and violently forces them from the stern. Oars begin to lower into the water.
2013-01-21, 11:22 PM
Any tricks on hand Ko? asks Zal, taking deep breaths as he stands near the edge. We going after them, right? he looks down and steels himself.
FRA to Ready Maneuvers:
Wolf Fang Strike
Cloak of Deception
Shadow Blade Technique
2013-01-21, 11:27 PM
Aria reaches out and touches Ari's leg with a brief utterance. As she does so, she realizes she's shaking and folds her arms tightly under her breast.
Is, uh, is it dead? she asks, looking up between Zal and Ari.
Cure light wounds [roll0]
2013-01-22, 12:03 AM
Ari sinks to one knee next to the demon, sword planted firmly in the sand. She tosses of a quick prayer under her breath, but mostly she's just trying to steady herself and catch her breath. After a long moment she turns to Aria and smiles.
"Thank you... that was tough."
Hearing Zal's words about going after them she stands quickly.
"Sounds good, do we have a boat? I mean, I'm not a sailor or anything, but I'm more than willing to go after them!"
2013-01-22, 01:12 AM
Ko calmly answers, If you can get me close enough, I can gum up the rowers. Then we can put a hole in their boat and watch it sink. Is that what's most important right now, though?
2013-01-22, 02:15 AM
Aria takes a deep breath and winks at Ari with a bright smile in acknowledgement.
With obvious reticence she says We, well, I think we really do need that relic. How close is enough, Ko? she asks as she scans the area for something potentially useful.
2013-01-22, 08:25 AM
They have to be within 130 ft. of me.
2013-01-27, 09:20 PM
Zal sighs an looks at the rakshasa. Is it dead? he asks. Otherwise we might as well do some questioning.
2013-01-29, 08:36 PM
With a dozen of oars pulling the ship away, the barbarian raiders swiftly disappear into the night. With no way to follow, you turn your attention to the fallen demon. Pulling the creature out of the water, you find it is no longer breathing, having succumbed to its wounds and water in its lungs.
Fetching the sword out of the water, you find holding it causes your pact to focus on your hand. Whatever enchantments are on the sickly yellow blade, they were created for the purpose of evil. Putting the sword back in its scabbard causes the chill in your bones to cease as its effects are sealed away.
Searching the creature, you find a small bag at its waste. Inside is a wadded piece of paper that seems to be covered in dried blood, a handful of small crystals, and a pair of translucent stones set in a frame to be worn over the eyes. On the beast’s finger you find a copper ring with arcane inscriptions, while pain gold rings circle one wrist and ankle. Several earrings adorn the creature’s feline ears.
2013-01-29, 10:48 PM
Sail on, Good Ship Indecision, and may we be better prepared in the future, Aria says wistfully as she stares out over the water. With a heavy sigh she turns back to the fallen foe and starts removing its jewelry and rifling its clothing looking for more valuables. We're probably needed in town, so let's hurry up. Any of this thing's stuff we can't use the people here can sell for money to help rebuild. Ko, I don't know how to detect or identify magical objects, can you help with that?
2013-01-29, 11:22 PM
Zal handles the sword. We might need to reforge this thing he says worriedly. And I have to buy some things. Fire-starters and candles'd be like a feather-pin off the skyway. he says.
2013-01-30, 12:25 AM
Ko returns his attention back to shore, and says, "Detect, certainly, to Identify I must wait until tomorrow morning. He casts Detect Magic, and looks over the rakshasa and it's items.
2013-01-30, 12:43 AM
After a few moments Ko detects faint divination auras from the stone spectacles and copper ring. One of the earrings has a faint transmutation aura.
2013-01-31, 06:23 AM
Ari looks out to sea, at the part of the horizon where the barbarian galley disappeared.
"I can't believe they got away... I mean I'm glad we killed this demon; but I don't like leaving a job half done." She picks up her sword and slides it back into it's sheathe over her shoulder.
"I don't suppose anyone has a way to figure out where they've gone to? I'm still in the mood to crush some more of those bastards."
2013-01-31, 08:14 AM
"Leave it be, Arcutia. We have more important things to worry about." After detectifying the items, Ko, begins walking the way they came, back towards the wounded soldier.
2013-01-31, 04:01 PM
We'll get them says Zal; cleaning the borrowed dagger. Some. Rest will be good. I'm feeling all the running around we've done today
2013-01-31, 08:51 PM
Aria pockets the magical gear, sword notwithstanding, and the paper lifted from the fallen demon, and carries the rest in the fiend's bag. Zal's right. If nothing else they'll find us, and we'll get them then. But for now, if anyone has ideas on how we can make better use of the rakshasa's nonmagical jewelry, speak now or forever look like an ass to the villagers! she says smiling, and stands up to follow Ko. Wanting to keep a trophy of an evil extraplanar warrior bred to kill puny mortals isn't a mark of shame, you know!
2013-02-01, 12:04 AM
But it advertises us as demon hunters he says, grabbing the plainest looking earring, playing idly with it. I find jewels to be a liability, but I think I have an idea for these. he says after a time. I've seen private guards with earrings they use to talk to each other at a distance. Seeing how we got split, maybe enchanting these to that end would be useful. he says. As to the magical treasure, we may as well put it on; its not as if they were harming the rakshasa.
2013-02-01, 03:45 PM
I like the way you think, Zal. But keep in mind he opted not to wear the, uh, She pauses to retrieve the paper and spectacles and holds them in front of her face, smiling, and continues sexy and stylish lookin'-rocks. How do I look?
Without waiting for an answer she uncrumples the paper to examine it, humming lightly.
2013-02-02, 11:21 AM
Looking through the stones, you see a soft glow around everyone. You are your fellow Harbingers have a soft blue aura around them, while the fallen Zakya has a much fainter orange one.
Looking at the blooded paper, you see that it also gives off orange and blue auras. After examaining the auras from the paper for a few moments you realize that it appears to be a map of the Eldeen Bay. There are seven black marks on the Aundair side of the bay, six of which have been marked out. The seventh appears to be near where this village is. There is only one mark on the Demon Wastes side of the map.
2013-02-03, 12:46 PM
An elderly woman leading a small group of villages appear from between a couple shacks. Most of them duck back into the alley before the elderly woman’s face lights up and hurries up to you.
“Madam gnome. Is it over?" Thiel asks, looking a the boats disappearing into the night, then gasps as she looks down to see the Zakya's corpse. She waves her followers over, instructing two of them to go to the church and let the villagers know. She sends one of them back to her meeting house while the other two begin to drag wood onto the beach. “We had best purify this,” she explains. “Can’t be too safe when demons are involved. Could you help move the beast to the wood pile?”
With the Zakya on the wood, the priestess takes a bag from the villager returning from the meeting house. She nods and the villagers set the wood ablaze. With a sprinkle of dust from the bag, the flames turn bright silver.
Thiel raises her arms to the fire and offers a prayer. “May the light of the Silver Flame clean this blight from Eberron and replace its darkness. May the heat of the Silver Flame take the flesh of this evil that it may never again taint the world again. May the glory of the Silver Flame fill the absence of purity brought here that harmony and goodness might visit us again. May the strength of the Silver Flame overcome the pains and damage this creature caused and protect and heal those touched by its taint. May the Silver Flame continue to protect us and guide the hearts and arms of those who do its work.”
“Well then,” another woman says, walking up to the pyre. “We still have much to do. I am Ostern, the town elder. On behalf of our village you have our thanks. However I have to impose on you’re a bit longer. There’s always the chance some barbarians have been left behind, so we would like your help in keeping up safe as we try to put out these damnable fires and help what survivors we can. We have a long night ahead of us.”
2013-02-03, 12:55 PM
"I know where a wounded soldier is." Says Ko, giving them directions to Reng. "I'd be happy to assist in any way I can."
2013-02-04, 12:26 AM
Aria beams, and her posture is just as triumphant. I told you, Lady Ostern! We're well worn and road-weary, but no simple barbarians can match my companions! We're here to serve!
2013-02-04, 08:35 PM
Gladly says Zal. Where's the military camp. Have to return some weapons I borrowed.
2013-02-04, 09:40 PM
For much of the night, you spend shifts helping patrol the village for raiders left behind, helping put out or contain fires, and moving sick soldiers and injured villagers to the Sovereign Hosts Church, the largest and most solid building in the village.
The next afternoon, another ship is spotted approaching the village. With an elegantly curved hull, painted in blues, greens, and gold, and the kraken adorning the main sail, the ship is unmistakably belongs to House Lyrandar. Thiel asks the four of your to accompany her to meet the representatives rowing to the town shore.
Six half-elves and a small pile of supplies crowd the pair of small rowboats that come ashore. A rugged half-elf, wearing a worn, but well made and decorated long tailed coat with a matching hat and belt, takes the lead. The green-blue patterns of a dragonmark shows on the right side of his neck, stretching up along his jaw, from the bottom of his ear to his chin. He removes his hat and offers Thiel and your group a deep, flourished bow. "Captain Dalton D'Lyrandar, at your service," he says. "We saw the lights from flames last night and changed out course to see if we can be any help."
"If you could see the lights, you could have been here when we needed the help," Thiel replies sharply.
Dalton is obviously caught off guard by Theil's usual bluntness. "Yes... un... unfortunately this ship is set to pick up four passengers farther West. House Lyrandar would... well, wouldn't look favorably on bringing this ship into danger outside of its charter..."
"Well," Thiel replies, apparently pleased by Dalton's reaction. "Welcome to Midhome. What's left of it in any case."
2013-02-05, 12:26 AM
It's a pleasure, Captain, the young gnome says lightly with a graceful bow, Or, such that can be had, considering the circumstances. If we could impose upon your crew aid in digging graves for the numerous fallen, the people would be eternally grateful, sir, and you and your men would be doing a great service in helping to avert plague among already shattered lives.
2013-02-05, 09:38 AM
Ari glares at the new arrivals; but says nothing.
2013-02-06, 11:17 AM
"Yes, of course we can help with... wait. Did you said plague?" Dalton replies. "Umm... we brought blankets, clothing, and some food to help those who have lost their homes..."
He stops and takes a closer look at the four of you. "A gnome. A white haired woman. A shabby man," he mumbles to himself. Then clearer he asks, "You wouldn't happen to be Ms.Aria Eriksidot would you? If you are, we're your ride across the bay."
2013-02-06, 02:36 PM
Metaphorical plague. adds Zal. So when do we sail? There's stuff we want to upgrade first. his tone is somewhat acerbic; he dislikes being called shabby. He may be street rat born and a fugitive but hardly shabby; rough but handsome would be more what he'd venture for his own description, not that he'd ever say it.
2013-02-06, 08:22 PM
"We weren't due to pick you up till tomorrow morning," the half-elf captain replies. "But we are at your service to sail when and where you want. I gave Galstuf an open contract on the ship."
"Claspim," he says to one of his crew. "Head back to the Gallant and bring everyone we can spare ashore. Bring anything they can find to help dig some holes."
2013-02-07, 08:08 PM
Thank you, Captain, Aria says with a bow, and puts the glasses and withdraws the map. I'm not entirely sure, but I believe we have our destination. Forgive the blood, but do you know what significance this place may have? she asks, indicating the black dot on the Demon Wastes side of the bay, but also looking at the sailors and Thiel, and whether they glow blue like her comrades to test her hypothesis on the nature of the spectacles.
2013-02-08, 04:36 PM
Dalton and Thiel have a blue aura, as do most of the sailors. A few of them have a grey aura, however.
After lending Dalton the glasses so he can see the colors on the paper that make the map, the captain just shakes his head. "Doesn't mean anything to me," he answers. "We can probably get in the general area. Can't say that side of the Eldeen Bay is sailed much. Mostly just volcanoes and cliffs.
"Will have to borrow this later so I can mark that location on a proper map," he says, handing the glasses back to Aria.
2013-02-08, 07:56 PM
Along with Calspim Zal leaves, determined to find a craftsman, mage, artificer or tinker capable of enchanting them some communication devices. Hey Ko, come with. he tells the wizard. I might need help explaining what I want on the earrings. he says bluntly.
Zal is looking for an artificer or mage of some sort to magic up the earrings:
Gather Info: [roll0]
2013-02-08, 08:11 PM
Ko complies, with a whisper to Aria, "I'll be at the church when we're ready to set sail."Ko will almost immediately (once he's out of sight of everyone but Zal) slip into a new form; that of a middle-aged dwarven woman. She'll attempt to buy some materials while helping Zal, and head to the church to scribe a scroll of Identify after.
2013-02-09, 04:08 AM
Handy trick. Wouldn't a face seen killing demons be better? he asks, sticking his hands into his pockets as they amble around, looking for any signs of magic item crafters.
2013-02-09, 08:18 AM
Ko looks up at Zal. "Not really. Being lauded as a hero can only jeopardize our mission. Which way?"
2013-02-09, 09:20 AM
Ari sticks with Aria and the captain, trying to stay out of the way but close enough to render assistance if anything should occur.
2013-02-09, 02:44 PM
Ko and Zal:
Asking around for those skilled in magic only directs you to the twon priests, neither having the skill or experience needed to enchant items.
Bartell, the priest of the church, lends you the use of his office for a place away from the sick and injured taking up the majority of the building.
Aria and Ari
"I thought someone said this was a metaphorical plague," Dalton comments upon seeing the state of some of the corpses. He tells his men to start digging and finish up quickly. The captain isn't all talk, however, and he grabs a spade himself and join his crew in the work.
Ostern asks for some help clearing debris as well, and the two of you and the Gallant crew spend most of the afternoon helping with the cleanup efforts. With suppertime approaching, you head to the Chruch to check on Ko and Zal. Dalton joins you after sending his crew back to the ship.
The villagers deliver a simple stew to you at the church, along with a few bread rolls. Ostern, Bartell, Thiel, and Dalton join you for the simple meal. The three villager leaders mostly discuss what needs to be done to get the village back into shape and help those who are injured, homeless, or have lost family in the attack. Dalton simply sits there quietly, watching the other villagers help feed the sick and injured.
Supper is interrupted as an excited young man brust through the doors of the church. "The halflings are coming!" he shout excitedly. "House Jorasco is here to help!"
Ostern mutters, "Great, here to extort us for some healing, no doubt."
"Ever the cynic," Bartell says. "The gold rings from the demon should cover their fee for our villagers. It's the Crown that will be paying for their care of the soldiers. Come along, we had best go meet them.'
"Excuse us," Ostern says to you and the three village leaders head out.
Dalton watches them leaves before returning to his stew. His spoon stops halfway to his mouth as barking is heard through the open church doors. He casts a worried look over the sick men in the church before standing. "We should go," he says. "Now."
2013-02-09, 03:40 PM
Bored with the proceedings, Zal vanishes onto the rafters for a nap. Now? asks Zal, pulled out of his sleep by the captain's exclamation. What's the matter? I need to return my dagger still.
2013-02-09, 07:37 PM
Aria looks at Dalton with a quizzical look and a big grin, and adds It is curious, every time I've heard that line the guy was about to get hanged for sleeping with somebody's wife or daughter.
2013-02-09, 09:00 PM
Where have you lived that -that- gets you hung? says Zal with a snort, appearing besides Aria in a haze of shadows. You can explain en route.
2013-02-09, 10:20 PM
Aria looks slyly at Zal and says, still grinning, Metaphorical hanging.
2013-02-10, 07:49 AM
Ari suppresses a chuckle, and quickly does her best to look dead serious again.
2013-02-10, 10:02 AM
"Well, hangings weren't my first concern," Dalton replies. "Those sound like magebred wardogs to me. If we don't leave town now, we may not be able to later.
"Look, I'm sure Ostern didn't contact House Jorasco. Which means it was probably the Aundair army. Which means Jorasco knows about this... this magical plague. They have a possible outbreak of an unknown sickness. I think they plan to quarantine the town. We either leave now, before they have it in place, or we try to sneak out later.
"Personally, I'd rather not get caught later. I know how much pull the Houses have."
2013-02-10, 02:46 PM
Get moving then. Zal responds. We have places to go.
2013-02-10, 04:03 PM
Aria stands, saying flatly Zal's right, we can't have that. You want me to distract them, or has somebody got a better plan?
2013-02-10, 04:33 PM
"It's best we just leave immediately - otherwise we'll just draw attention to ourselves." Ari says.
2013-02-11, 08:29 AM
The middle-aged dwarven woman you all now know to be Ko, speaks. "Very well then. Lead on."
I've been out of commission for a day or two. I'm going to mark down that I made a scroll of Identify, and take the costs out of my GP and XP totals.
I was under the impression that Ko had already returned the ring by the time I said I was making the scroll. He would have also returned the dagger, seeing as how Zal seems to be willing to part with it, and it would have made sense to him to save a second trip.
2013-02-11, 08:00 PM
The five of you hurry out the church doors and head toward the shore. You have only moved by a couple buildings when you hear a someone yelling an order. Slipping into the shadows between two houses, you glance back up the street and see a pair halflings riding a pair of large dogs, asking a few people outside a building to return to their homes.
"Bet they're pretty confused," Dalton says with a smirk. "People don't think of the House of Healing having their own troops, but we all have them.
"Looks like we'll need a plan if they have already started patrols."
Reng is unconscious in the Church if you want to leave the dagger and ring with him.
2013-02-12, 12:24 AM
How many patrols can we expect?
Also, how far is it to the boat?
2013-02-12, 01:44 AM
"Hard to say," Dalton replies. "Maybe one or two? Maybe we won't see any. I think the biggest problem may be at the shore, if they spot the Gallant and the rowboat."
You have about 400 yards to the shore. There buildings and pathways up until about the last 100 feet, when the tide is in. You have about another 350 feet of rowing to the boat.
2013-02-12, 03:30 AM
Is that all? Get ready, because once I'm done we may not have long. And look scared! Her wide eyes and sadistic grin give the impression that she may be a bit too into this idea of hers.
With a few flourishes and words, and Aria's lips curl into a mischievous smile.
Her first spell doesn't seem to do much, but her second covers the ground and wall in what looks like freshly splattered blood, as if from a terrible sword wound, creating a trail that looks like a winding trail of dripping blood leading the opposite direction from the shore. As she finishes her third spell, she says Go-go-go! and takes off running toward the shore, screaming as if being chased by Asmodeus himself, It's back! It can't be killed! It's back! as a terrible scream, sounding as if a human girl had been stabbed, followed by painful sobbing sounds from nearby.
A voice like the rakshasa's rings out loudly over the crying, Halflings! How about a game? Find me or my lunch, and I might not eat her liver! You have half an hour or until I get bored! And play fair! If I see any casting I'll just snap her whiny neck!
1) Expeditious retreat
2) Prestidigitation, using an artful combination of the "soiling" and "coloring" effects
3) Ghost sound
Aria's only going to be keeping pace slightly ahead of everybody else, rather than running far ahead again.
2013-02-12, 04:06 AM
What in the... says Zal looking at Aria as they run. What's with the voice?
2013-02-12, 08:45 AM
Ari is momentarily startled, but quickly heads off following Aria as quickly as possible.
2013-02-12, 06:56 PM
Confusion is the first reaction of the few halflings and townsfolk you can see, followed by panic as your group run out from between the buildings. The townsfolk immediately run for the church, while you see the dog riding halflings making their way south, away from the shore.
You come up short at the edge of the buildings however. A pair of halflings are standing on the shore, looking your direction with a mixture of confusion and concern on their faces. You are certain they haven't spotted your group, however.
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