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  1. - Top - End - #91
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    Default Re: Circle of Life's Red Hand of Doom IC Thread

    The guard picks up Roni's identification with just two fingers, holding it gingerly as if he expects it to disintegrate at any moment. "You know, Mr. Quickwing," he says dryly while carefully examining the card, "you're supposed to have fresh papers issued to you every few years. You might want to pick up a new set the next time you're in a major city; this one looks like it went through the Mourning. Twice." Despite his tone and the papers' condition, the guard finds no issues with Roni's identification and passes them back.

    "Yessir, Gausler's Brewhouse is the best restaurant and tavern in town. Well," the guard chuckles, "it's the only restaurant in town, and the only hostel. If you're going to be staying for a few days, he's got some beds for good rates." More soberly, he continues, "Rates are a bit higher these days, though, with the lack of travelers and business. Real shame, that." He returns to attention to wait for Auran's identification, but adds one last piece of advice to Roni: "Ask for the roast pheasant with pear sauce. Tastes like it came straight from Syrania, and you won't need to eat for a week after."
    Better to DM in Baator than play in Celestia
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    Quote Originally Posted by abadguy View Post
    Darn you PoDL for making me care about a bunch of NPC Commoners!
    Won a cookie for this, won everything for this

  2. - Top - End - #92
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    Default Re: Circle of Life's Red Hand of Doom IC Thread

    Roni's eyes light up, for once with genuine joy and not impish mischief. "Bless you, kind sir," he says to the guard with a smile. "Pheasant...alehouse..." he sighs to himself, "what are we waiting for?" He heads off toward the gates. Roni explored the nooks and crannies of Sharn before breakfast each day; finding the only tavern in a small town should be child's play by comparison.

    Knowledge Local - (1d20+5)[7]

    However, Roni finds himself stymied by the sheer simplicity of the town. There were no markings on the roads--no real "roads" to speak of, more like ruts cut into the ground by passing wagon wheels. Sheepishly, he backtracks a few steps and asks the guard, "pray tell, good man, where can one find this ambrosia?"
    Last edited by OMG PONIES; 2012-08-21 at 05:02 PM.
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  3. - Top - End - #93
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    Default Re: Circle of Life's Red Hand of Doom IC Thread

    Auran seemed to be put off a bit by the guard's adamant request for official documents. His eye slits narrowed appraising the man before him, before drawing himself a bit higher than resting upon his digitigrade legs, reaching nearly a full 8 feet in height.

    "My dear child, you are standing before a Paladin of Bahamut. Even had I not travelled through time and space from ancient Aerenal, I pay no fealty to any nation, nor any house, nor organization that would vet me as you seem so bent upon. However, should you not wish my aid in your coming battles, I will remand my companions to your good keeping, and patrol the surrounding area for any further hobgoblin bandits..."

    As the dragonborn spoke, the man felt the divine presence of the paladin infuse him, pouring vigor into his bones, resolve into his mind, and spring into his step.

    Settling back down into his normal 7 foot resting height, Auran awaited the guardsman's response...

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    So a couple of things are happening. Auran officially "allied" himself with the man, meaning the guard now counts as an ally within 30 feet...gaining a +2 to all of his saves...he would experience this as an uplifting emanation of good, as only a paladin would radiate.

    The other thing is that Auran is using diplomacy. I assume we are using Richard Burlew's revised diplomacy rules in which case Auran is effectively making the following proposition:

    Allow Auran to pass and gain the aid and gratitude of a Paladin in his village, or he may refuse in which case he loses nothing but the chance for the former, while Auran vows to defend the village from outside the perimeter. So you can come up with a DC based on that, but I'm going to roll now.

    The following roll includes a +4 bonus from his Just Templar class feature that applies to any rolls involving legal matters (such as traveling papers or the lack thereof).

    (1d20+19)[21]

    Hmm...not the best roll...almost a botch (perhaps because of Auran's elf-like condescending mannerisms)...but perhaps if the risk to reward ratio is perceived as good enough, the roll might yet succeed by more than a fair margin. I'm guessing the relationship modifier is 0, but I'm not sure of the guard's level, or his wisdom modifier. However I was aiming for a risk reward of somewhere between favorable and fantastic, since if the guard refuses he loses nothing (save perhaps face lost for potentially offending an honest-to-Bahamut paladin), and if he accepts, he gains the favor of a powerful new ally.

    Last edited by TekHed; 2012-08-21 at 07:28 PM.
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    The Cruciform Shard in "Eyes of the Lich Queen" (Eberron)
    Auran Sol the Dragon-born in "Red Hand of Doom" (Eberron)
    Soren St.Croix in "The Resistance" (E6)
    Koan, the Mountain Glacier in "Masters of the Nine Swords"
    Mutt Scalawag in "Beyond the Horizon"
    Brigid, Princess of Bears in "Shadows of an Untold Land"

  4. - Top - End - #94
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    Default Re: Circle of Life's Red Hand of Doom IC Thread

    The second guard looks on with a smirk as Roni confidently passes through the gate without a clue where he's going. "Very simple, sir. Just follow this road down a ways, past the wheat fields, until you reach the--"

    He is interrupted by Auran's pronouncement, and both guards turn to stare at him, unconsciously straightening their postures and looking like they're suppressing the urge to salute. The guard nearest Roni murmurs, "A paladin? Here? By Dol Arrah, we may survive this yet." The first guard finds his tongue after a moment and stammers, "N-no, sir. I mean, y-yes sir, your aid would be most welcome. It's just, the only scaled ones around here are lizardfolk, and you didn't look like you were from around here, but I wasn't sure, and there have been raids, and we weren't sure who was with the hobs, and...and...sorry, sir. You can go in." He steps out of the way and ushers Auran, Faien, and Vaeri through the gate, latching it behind them.

    The second guard continues with his directions to Roni, which are simple enough, and soon you find yourselves in front of a fairly large two-story building claiming to be the town's tavern. You got a few strange looks on the way in, but not too many, and that reaction plus the tavern's size point to a regular influx of merchants and adventurers through the area in normal times. When you're a few feet from the door, a burly half-orc swings it open with one well-muscled arm. He has a floppy chef's hat on his head and a frying pan in his other hand, and the steam wafting off whatever's cooking in it is heavenly. He wipes his free hand on his apron and beckons you inside with a toothy grin. "C'mon in, c'mon in, ladies an' gennlemen. Saw you a-comin' on down th' road an' figured ye could stand a warm fire fer yer feet--" he motions with the frying pan "--an' fer yer bellies." With a hearty chuckle, he leads the way inside.

    The front room is full of tables and empty of visitors; the small fireplace crackles cheerfully anyway, and the many stuffed animal heads on the wall look out over the empty room the same as any other day. The bartender--presumably the eponymous Gausler--clunks his frying pan down on one of the grills in the back and leans over the bar. "Take any ol' table, none o' th' regulars gonna be here fer a good while. What can I be gettin' fer ye this eve?"
    Better to DM in Baator than play in Celestia
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    Quote Originally Posted by abadguy View Post
    Darn you PoDL for making me care about a bunch of NPC Commoners!
    Won a cookie for this, won everything for this

  5. - Top - End - #95
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    Default Re: Circle of Life's Red Hand of Doom IC Thread

    The bartender can only get out "What can I--" before Roni calls out his order, just like the guard had suggested: "Roast pheasant, please, with pear sauce and a big ol' tankard of honey mead." He licks his lips and rubs his hands together in preparation for the meal. However, something one of the guards said keeps nagging at him.

    Once the barman is gone, Roni turns to his companions and whispers, "One of the guards mentioned something about 'surviving this' now that we're in town. What do you think he was talking about surviving?" It's unclear whether Roni hadn't heard the guards talk of hobgoblins over the growling of his stomach or just hadn't paid it any mind. "Think it's got anything to do with those hobs we saw out on the road?" Just as quickly, he's back to the menu. "What do you think I should get for dessert?" he asks himself aloud. "Should have asked that guard some follow-up questions. Oh well, guess we'll just have to sample one of everything." The boy bounces from topic to topic with joy, evoking the image of a much younger child in a confectioner's shop.
    Last edited by OMG PONIES; 2012-08-22 at 06:24 AM.
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  6. - Top - End - #96
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    Default Re: Circle of Life's Red Hand of Doom IC Thread

    Faien doesn't bother waiting until the guards are out of earshot to shoot a withering glance in Auran's direction. "That display was hardly necessary, Sir Sol. Belittling the town's protectors in such a fashion is not going to aid them in performing their duties." Shaking his head with a sigh, he continues. "Was that your true reason for not carrying papers? Devotion to a god does not put you above mortal authority, nor should one perceived threat be the death of standard form and courtesy."

    Once they reach the inn, Faien takes a minute to stable his horse before joining the others inside and nodding to the bartender. "Thank you; your hospitality is most welcome after today's journey. The pheasant sounds pleasant; I shall try that as well, and a glass of white wine, please, if you have some." Choosing a table further from the fire - the day's heat had been quite sufficient in that regard already - Faien nods in response to Roni's query.

    "Most likely. They spoke of raids, and the archer fled in this direction. No doubt we can learn more when the Speaker arrives."
    Last edited by Sallera; 2012-08-22 at 04:05 PM.
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  7. - Top - End - #97
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    Default Re: Circle of Life's Red Hand of Doom IC Thread

    Quote Originally Posted by PairO'Dice Lost View Post
    He is interrupted by Auran's pronouncement, and both guards turn to stare at him, unconsciously straightening their postures and looking like they're suppressing the urge to salute. The guard nearest Roni murmurs, "A paladin? Here? By Dol Arrah, we may survive this yet." The first guard finds his tongue after a moment and stammers, "N-no, sir. I mean, y-yes sir, your aid would be most welcome. It's just, the only scaled ones around here are lizardfolk, and you didn't look like you were from around here, but I wasn't sure, and there have been raids, and we weren't sure who was with the hobs, and...and...sorry, sir. You can go in." He steps out of the way and ushers Auran, Faien, and Vaeri through the gate, latching it behind them.
    Auran bows a nod to the guardsmen. "You are right to be on alert. However, we are clearly neither lizardfolk nor goblins. I know these are dark times, but there is still light in the world."

    Quote Originally Posted by Sallera View Post
    Faien doesn't bother waiting until the guards are out of earshot to shoot a withering glance in Auran's direction. "That display was hardly necessary, Sir Sol. Belittling the town's protectors in such a fashion is not going to aid them in performing their duties." Shaking his head with a sigh, he continues. "Was that your true reason for not carrying papers? Devotion to a god does not put you above mortal authority, nor should one perceived threat be the death of standard form and courtesy."
    The dragonborn snorted through it's nostrils. "Simply Auran will do. I'm a paladin, not a knight, magistrate."

    He shook his head. "It is as I said...the only records of me are in ancient books on Aerenal, and the memories of of the Undying and Dragon-kind. You forget that I only arrived here but a few short months ago. Even my form is not as it once was," he said gazing at his taloned palm by way of emphasis.

    "As for the humans, I am certain they will do fine. You heard the one. It is good for their spirit to know that help has arrived. When hope dies, there is nothing left to fight for. At least, that is why I still press on..."


    The bartender--presumably the eponymous Gausler--clunks his frying pan down on one of the grills in the back and leans over the bar. "Take any ol' table, none o' th' regulars gonna be here fer a good while. What can I be gettin' fer ye this eve?"
    "We are honored to sit at your hearth." Auran replied. "I will have water, bread, and today's catch from the river."
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    The Cruciform Shard in "Eyes of the Lich Queen" (Eberron)
    Auran Sol the Dragon-born in "Red Hand of Doom" (Eberron)
    Soren St.Croix in "The Resistance" (E6)
    Koan, the Mountain Glacier in "Masters of the Nine Swords"
    Mutt Scalawag in "Beyond the Horizon"
    Brigid, Princess of Bears in "Shadows of an Untold Land"

  8. - Top - End - #98
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    Default Re: Circle of Life's Red Hand of Doom IC Thread

    Roni kills the time he spends waiting for his food by engaging in more philosophical discussion with Auran. However, gone is his stubborn stance from their conversations earlier. Instead, it seems clear that Roni is genuinely interested in Auran's answer. "What do you still hope for, Auran?" he asks.
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  9. - Top - End - #99
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    Default Re: Circle of Life's Red Hand of Doom IC Thread

    "Ah, so you are aware of how fantastic your tale sounds. But that alone would not stop you; the Brelish authorities, at least, are not shy about issuing identification, and a few rounds of truth magic would likely satisfy even the cagiest of them, despite your appearance. They are well-known for taking in refugees." Tapping his finger on the table, Faien looks at Auran with the air of one repeating an argument held with uncounted others, and already resigned to its eventual direction.

    "If you do not, in fact, consider yourself above mortal authority - as you should not - then why have you made no effort to rejoin society? Do you plan to die when your current task is complete?"
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  10. - Top - End - #100
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    Default Re: Circle of Life's Red Hand of Doom IC Thread

    Vaeri seems a bit surprised at Auran's actions and given her papers were sitting at the bottom of her pack, is not unhappy to find herself shuffled along with the others.

    Upon entering the inn, she glances quickly around before taking a seat beside Roni. Adding, "whatever he's having is fine," to the bartender's order motioning toward Roni.

    She removes her cloak, folding it and hangs it across the chair.

    Oh, and please, tell me there is a bath house available? We are staying at least one night?" the last she directs to Auran?

  11. - Top - End - #101
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    Default Re: Circle of Life's Red Hand of Doom IC Thread

    Auran's expression changed to something none of the others had seen before...sadness, or perhaps regret.

    "I have already died, and been damned." he said. "My redemption was unexpected, my new life not my own. I have been hunting the Key since my karmic rebirth, and to be honest I do not wholly expect to survive my coming ordeal."

    He turned to the scaled siblings.

    "As for your question young Master Quickwing, I may have been redeemed, but what I seek is forgiveness. Should I be blessed enough to see my task successful, I would return to my homeland, to beg the forgiveness of my people."

    "I cannot predict the length of our stay, young Miss. All depends on what the Speaker has to tell us. I am eager to pursue the hobgoblins, before they find the key, if they haven't already, or take it back from them if they have."
    Last edited by TekHed; 2012-08-23 at 06:25 PM.
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    The Cruciform Shard in "Eyes of the Lich Queen" (Eberron)
    Auran Sol the Dragon-born in "Red Hand of Doom" (Eberron)
    Soren St.Croix in "The Resistance" (E6)
    Koan, the Mountain Glacier in "Masters of the Nine Swords"
    Mutt Scalawag in "Beyond the Horizon"
    Brigid, Princess of Bears in "Shadows of an Untold Land"

  12. - Top - End - #102
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    Default Re: Circle of Life's Red Hand of Doom IC Thread

    Faien gives a resigned sigh, Auran's answer being more or less what he had expected. "I have told this to more people than I can count; precious few have listened, and more of the rest are dead than should be. All the same, I'll say it only once: Don't expect death. You'll only encourage it."

    Dropping the matter before the lurking feeling of wasting his breath grows any stronger, Faien turns instead to answer Vaeri. "While we cannot make any promises, I would certainly expect that we will stay at least tonight. By the time we finish our meal and consult with the Speaker, it will be late afternoon at best; not a good time to go hunting in unfamiliar terrain."
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  13. - Top - End - #103
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    Default Re: Circle of Life's Red Hand of Doom IC Thread

    When Roni orders the roast pheasant before he can even mention what's on the menu, the half-orc belts out another laugh. "Sounds like ol' Gustav's on watch today. He ain't ordered a dif'rent dish in years." He listens to the other orders, nodding at each. "Three married birds an' a fish outta water, comin' right up. I'll have one o' th' girls bring out some oats, too, no extra." He clomps through a door behind the bar and down some stairs, coming up shortly with mead and a bottle of wine, which he tells Faien is a Rheklor '83 as he pours everyone's drinks. Gausler fires up the grill, and the scent of roasting fowl slowly fills the room as you have your conversation.

    A few minutes later, a young goblin girl comes up from the cellar with a bag of oats, which she takes out the side door to the hitching post that serves as the stable. She comes back in and fetches a fresh, warm loaf of dark bread, which she takes to your table in time to hear Vaeri's question about a bath house. "There are baths in the rooms, miss," she answers softly. "If you want the water heated, I can bring you some heating stones. You can keep those for your stay, and just leave them in the bath when you leave. Assuming you are staying, of course." The serving girl tops off Auran's water before returning to the bar, where Gausler is still slow-roasting the pheasants.
    Better to DM in Baator than play in Celestia
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    Quote Originally Posted by abadguy View Post
    Darn you PoDL for making me care about a bunch of NPC Commoners!
    Won a cookie for this, won everything for this

  14. - Top - End - #104
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    Default Re: Circle of Life's Red Hand of Doom IC Thread

    "Death is one of the few certainties we must all face" Auran countered. "We may only choose how we face it. Believe me...I am in no hurry. I would speak to my living ancestors, and my descendants; however, I hold no illusions about the stakes at hand. If the Dark Queen of Dragons should be released from her prison, bandits in the woods will be the least of anyone's concern..."
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    The Cruciform Shard in "Eyes of the Lich Queen" (Eberron)
    Auran Sol the Dragon-born in "Red Hand of Doom" (Eberron)
    Soren St.Croix in "The Resistance" (E6)
    Koan, the Mountain Glacier in "Masters of the Nine Swords"
    Mutt Scalawag in "Beyond the Horizon"
    Brigid, Princess of Bears in "Shadows of an Untold Land"

  15. - Top - End - #105
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    Default Re: Circle of Life's Red Hand of Doom IC Thread

    Roni cracks a smile from behind his huge mug of mead. "I don't know many who have chosen their ends," he says, "neither the when, nor the what, nor the how of it. For some folks, death seems a hasty end to what was a budding exposition. For others, it might be the dramatic climax. For me, I plan on getting my thrills while I can and living 'til my scales are shriveled, with death as more of an appropriate denouement than anything else. If you wish to be a martyr in this task I can't stop you, but I'll be doing my damnedest to keep me and mine alive...that includes you both now, like it or not." At Vaeri's mention of a bath (and the goblin girl's mention of a warm one, at that) his train of thought switches tracks once more. "Aye, a hot soak seems like the cure these aching bones are searching for. Well, that, and a good deal more alcohol, of course."
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  16. - Top - End - #106
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    Default Re: Circle of Life's Red Hand of Doom IC Thread

    "Hm, indeed." Faien smiles slightly, following his own advice and putting the talk of death out of mind. "I am well accustomed to traveling long distances, but returning to a good inn and a hot bath is always welcome nonetheless. However, while I won't bother trying to stop you, do try to save the overindulgence in alcohol until after our discussion with the Speaker. 'Tis not good news we bring, and it does not seem that their own will be any better."
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  17. - Top - End - #107
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    Default Re: Circle of Life's Red Hand of Doom IC Thread

    "I've no wish to be a martyr. I'd much rather live on to victory. Still, your sentiment of valor is appreciated, young Roni."

    Turning to Faien, Auran querried, "...and you Magistrate. You are also one of deep conviction. You possess strange power, yet are neither sorcerer, nor bard, nor paladin. By what means do you pursue justice? Is your magic related to your deformity? I have heard legends of gods who maimed themselves in return for knowledge, wisdom, or power..."
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    The Cruciform Shard in "Eyes of the Lich Queen" (Eberron)
    Auran Sol the Dragon-born in "Red Hand of Doom" (Eberron)
    Soren St.Croix in "The Resistance" (E6)
    Koan, the Mountain Glacier in "Masters of the Nine Swords"
    Mutt Scalawag in "Beyond the Horizon"
    Brigid, Princess of Bears in "Shadows of an Untold Land"

  18. - Top - End - #108
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    Default Re: Circle of Life's Red Hand of Doom IC Thread

    "Unfortunately," Faien replies dryly, "I am not so puissant as to be considered a god, so such methods are closed to me. Even I am injured, from time to time."

    "However, there may be some relation," he continues in a more serious tone, sampling the wine. "Some thought it so, at least, among my family's household. I myself cannot say. What I wield and wear, this magic of mine, are simply echoes; the resonance of what was, made real once more. As our souls leave their mark on time, those who come after can use what was built by those before. As the ancient courthouse, resonant with history, so too my blade."

    He waves a hand idly. "Therefore, to answer your question, one would say that I pursue justice by means of justice itself. Paradoxical, is it not? Or perhaps simply tautological, depending on one's point of view."
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  19. - Top - End - #109
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    Default Re: Circle of Life's Red Hand of Doom IC Thread

    Vaeri listens carefully as the others talk of life, death, magic and shakes her head in wonder.

    "How can you all stay so focused all the time? I would think I would go insane with such a such a burden. Do you not have fun?"

  20. - Top - End - #110
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    Default Re: Circle of Life's Red Hand of Doom IC Thread

    "Ah, is the conversation not to your liking? I do apologize." Faien sets down his glass with an expression of solemnity, although a smile twitches at the corner of his mouth.

    "Truthfully, I do find it difficult to relax when I am working, and after today's events, that is indeed my current position. Perhaps later, after we have finished our meeting, it will be easier to turn my thoughts to lighter matters; for now, however, I must keep my focus on what has happened, so that I do not forget details that may prove significant once we share our information and obtain a greater understanding of the situation. So do please bear with our gloomy manners a bit longer."
    Last edited by Sallera; 2012-09-26 at 09:59 AM.
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  21. - Top - End - #111
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    Default Re: Circle of Life's Red Hand of Doom IC Thread

    Auran broke off a chunk of steaming bread, his eyes growing distant for a moment as he gazed through the vapors, and beyond into the distant past.

    "Duty is all that is left for me now, at least until I have paid my soul's ransom." he replied.

    "As for focus, it is something that is trained into we elves from a very young age, although where we place it does shift as we mature and our interests diversify over the millennia."

    Taking a bite of the bread he chews it thoughtfully, giving Vaeri an appraising look.

    "Although, I suppose it doesn't hurt to admit I am also looking forward to a hot soak."
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    The Cruciform Shard in "Eyes of the Lich Queen" (Eberron)
    Auran Sol the Dragon-born in "Red Hand of Doom" (Eberron)
    Soren St.Croix in "The Resistance" (E6)
    Koan, the Mountain Glacier in "Masters of the Nine Swords"
    Mutt Scalawag in "Beyond the Horizon"
    Brigid, Princess of Bears in "Shadows of an Untold Land"

  22. - Top - End - #112
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    Default Re: Circle of Life's Red Hand of Doom IC Thread

    "I'm afraid, honored visitors, that your refreshment from the rigors of travel will have to wait," opines a grandfatherly voice as the door swings open. A tall male human, graying at the temples and leaning on a cane but still looking tough and sturdy, stands in the now-open doorway flanked by two guards. One of the guards enters ahead of him and pulls an extra chair up to your table; the older man follows behind him and lowers himself into it with a small grunt of effort. The second guard enters as well, and both take up flanking positions behind the man. Last but not least is the small boy who fetched the Speaker, Arton, who ducks in after them, says hello to Gausler, receives a handful of cookies and a pat on the head from the half-orc, and rushes back out to the guard post.

    "My name is Torval Wiston. I am the Town Speaker of Drellin's Ferry, as you have probably gathered." The Speaker's piercing gaze travels around the table as he speaks as if carefully taking your measure, and you can tell from his tone and his manner that this is a man used to holding a position of authority. "Please pardon the gentlemen behind me. They aren't here because I don't trust you, I've simply picked up a guard detail since the last raider attack," he says, indicating his leg and cane. "But that shouldn't come as a surprise to you, since I hear you've had a few run-ins with the local trouble yourselves." He leans back as Gausler clomps over and serves everyone's meal, including a plate of roast mutton and a tankard of something strong and alcoholic for the Speaker.

    Torval pauses to take a bite of the mutton and a sip of his drink before continuing, and smiles wryly at the bartender. "I must be getting predictable in my advancing years. Wonderful as always, thank you, Gausler." The half-orc tips an imaginary cap and heads back behind the bar, returning with small glasses of beer for the guards which are gratefully accepted, drained, and returned. "Now, what news can you tell me about our hobgoblin problem?"
    Better to DM in Baator than play in Celestia
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    Quote Originally Posted by abadguy View Post
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  23. - Top - End - #113
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    Default Re: Circle of Life's Red Hand of Doom IC Thread

    "Good day, Speaker. I am Faien Illimis, Magistrate of Karrnath." Taking a last sip of wine, Faien sets down the glass and begins his explanation. "We encountered a group of hobgoblin bandits at a small farmhouse some ways down the western road. They had been waylaying travelers there for, as far as I could tell, approximately a day. While we slew most of them, along with their hounds, two fled toward the river and escaped. One of those we killed carried the symbol of Tiamat; we are thus operating under the assumption that these are the same individuals my associate has been pursuing regarding a misplaced artefact of the same."

    Pausing briefly, Faien glances at Roni. "Those they killed included, we assume, the inhabitants of the farmhouse, as well as several travelers; they have been buried, for now, but should you know the residents, we have kept the stolen coin apart that it might be returned to any inheritors. Any excess can be used to improve your defenses here. Now, what can you tell us about the situation? It sounds as though there is a more significant force in the area."
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  24. - Top - End - #114
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    Default Re: Circle of Life's Red Hand of Doom IC Thread

    Roni blanches as Faien offers up the excess gold to the town. The town, of all places. They'd most likely squander it on mundane things like road repair, signage, or extra shingles. The young spellscale fights back both a yawn and the thought of how many tankards of mead the excess gold could buy. He allows the bureaucrats to keep talking it out.
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  25. - Top - End - #115
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    Default Re: Circle of Life's Red Hand of Doom IC Thread

    "Not just hounds...the hounds of hell." Auran added.

    "You seem a learned man speaker...what do you know of the Dark Lady of Dragons?"
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    The Cruciform Shard in "Eyes of the Lich Queen" (Eberron)
    Auran Sol the Dragon-born in "Red Hand of Doom" (Eberron)
    Soren St.Croix in "The Resistance" (E6)
    Koan, the Mountain Glacier in "Masters of the Nine Swords"
    Mutt Scalawag in "Beyond the Horizon"
    Brigid, Princess of Bears in "Shadows of an Untold Land"

  26. - Top - End - #116
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    Default Re: Circle of Life's Red Hand of Doom IC Thread

    Vaeri listens as the Magistrate and Auran talk to the Speaker. With half an ear toward the conversation, she also lets her eyes wander the bar.

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  27. - Top - End - #117
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    Default Re: Circle of Life's Red Hand of Doom IC Thread

    Speaker Wiston listens calmly to Faien's tale and Auran's interjection. When the two ask him questions about the situation, he holds up a hand, asking for a moment to think. He half-closes his eyes and traces an imaginary path on the table with one finger. "Let's see, a farmhouse on a western road...that would be along Donegan's Way, since you came in through the north gate...we've had visitors from the Durin and Clovis families in the past few days...the Lochtans are visiting family in Zilargo and wouldn't have returned yet...which would leave the Wainwrights, whom we haven't heard from in a while." He opens his eyes, a mournful expression on his face. "A real shame, that. Such a nice family; Mrs. Wainwright always baked treats for all the children at the Autumn Festival." He shakes his head. "And so far as I'm aware, they have no relatives in the area. The freeholders don't keep records in town, of course, so they might have some relations among the other freeholders, but I don't recall any mention of other family. I suggest, then, that once we've finished here you record what you found at the farmhouse and donate it to the use of the township, and if any come to claim inheritance we will know what they are owed."

    Torval takes a long pull from his drink and leans back. "Now, getting to your questions: the situation around these parts. Drellin's Ferry has seen quite a few raids from goblnoids over the years, but they aren't usually a problem." He shrugs, unconcerned. "Usually, it's just a handful, maybe a dozen, of young adventurous types looking to cause trouble. That's the risk you take, being situated so near Darguun, but it isn't too dangerous. Recently, though, the situation has become more serious. As far back as two months ago, we started noticing more hobgoblins than normal in the raiding parties, where before you might have just one or two, or none at all. We assumed that was a temporary concern and did not make any special preparations, but since then the raids have become more frequent and more organized. They used to occur mostly on the Darguun side of the river, but in the past two weeks even here on the west bank there've been some heavier raids."

    He sighs heavily. "About nine days ago, we had our first losses. A squad of a dozen hobs snuck in along the road and killed five townsfolk before we could run them off. That's when I ordered the guard posts put up and traps and fences laid in the forests to prevent them getting in that way. They haven't troubled us since, but the steady flow of travelers we usually have this time of year--mostly merchants, some Zilargo-bound river travelers who stop here on their way, some Darguun-bound travelers who stock up here before reaching the Seawall--has dried up to a trickle. You're the first non-locals we've had in a good four or five days, and even the local freeholders haven't dropped in as often as they normally would."

    A moment of silence ensues as the Speaker and the guards remember the fallen and ponder the new turn of events. The Speaker strokes his chin a few times and continues, "As for your question, sir," this directed at Auran, "I am an educated man, but by no means an expert on the supernatural. I assume from your bearing and your mission that you are a servant of the divine, of one sort or another, and probably a warrior given the heavy weapons you carry. I assume by the scales of you and two of your companions that you serve one of the Dragons," he motions vaguely up at the sky, referencing the draconic constellations, "or one of the sects of the Host that believes them to truly be dragons--not that that would be a problem, Sir Knight," he adds, making a placating gesture. "I know the urban temples consider that a heresy, but out here in the country we figure a Host follower is a Host follower." He shrugs and folds his arms. "And as for Tiamat, I know she's one of the older and more powerful demons, and she probably has a cult around her since she's got a constellation up there, and it's probably not a good sign if the hobs are wearing her symbol, but that just about exhausts my knowledge on the subject. I've been too busy of late to read philosophy."

    Vaeri
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    You see some unusual things, but nothing that can't be explained by the lack of travelers. The entire room is much cleaner than your average tavern, which is probably due to Gausler and his serving girl having nothing else to do without customers around.
    Better to DM in Baator than play in Celestia
    You can just call me Dice; that's how I roll.


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    Quote Originally Posted by abadguy View Post
    Darn you PoDL for making me care about a bunch of NPC Commoners!
    Won a cookie for this, won everything for this

  28. - Top - End - #118
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    Default Re: Circle of Life's Red Hand of Doom IC Thread

    Faien closes his eyes for a minute, pondering the information. "Organized raids, ignoring well-defended targets... well-coordinated over a larger area, if they are harassing traffic from all directions. Some charismatic young leader must have gathered the raiders together under one banner, promising greater rewards from cooperation. I have certainly seen it happen more than once. And with this dense forest, they could hide a base of operations with ease - they would need one nearby, to keep such pressure on the area without needing to retreat over the border. If only we had not lost their trail..."

    Sighing, Faien looks to the Speaker. "We could wait for them to become arrogant and reveal their hand, but if their leader is skilled and keeps them under control, that could be weeks; months, in the worst case. That would be a last resort; I would much rather cut them off at the root and be done with it. You know this area well, I'm sure; can you think of any out-of-the-way places they might be using to store supplies and acquisitions?"
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  29. - Top - End - #119
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    Default Re: Circle of Life's Red Hand of Doom IC Thread

    Auran's scales bristled at the notion of sitting and waiting.

    "It is most urgent I recover the Key." he noted. "Magistrate Illimis, I know that your accompaniment was merely an expediency upon your way, and not part of your formal duty. I understand if you must return to Karnnath, though your aid in these matters is appreciated."

    Turning back to the Speaker he replied, "Aye, indeed I am a paladin of Bahamut, sworn enemy of Tiamat. What your history books will not tell you however is that She is very real, and imprisoned in corporeal form right here on Eberron. Unfortunately her dark influence is not so easy to keep jailed, and it is one of the keys to her cell that has recently been lost in this area."

    Auran resisted the urge to look scornfully at Roni as he uttered this last. What was done was already done.
    Spoiler: My Characters:
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    The Cruciform Shard in "Eyes of the Lich Queen" (Eberron)
    Auran Sol the Dragon-born in "Red Hand of Doom" (Eberron)
    Soren St.Croix in "The Resistance" (E6)
    Koan, the Mountain Glacier in "Masters of the Nine Swords"
    Mutt Scalawag in "Beyond the Horizon"
    Brigid, Princess of Bears in "Shadows of an Untold Land"

  30. - Top - End - #120
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    Default Re: Circle of Life's Red Hand of Doom IC Thread

    Wiston looks between the magistrate and the paladin, sighing heavily. "A stolen key to the prison of an all-too-real demon lord, and a sudden upsurge in goblinoid activity in the area where the key was lost. If that is a mere coincidence, I'll dip my cane in Gausler's barbecue sauce and eat it whole," he says matter-of-factly, a slight smile on his face. The half-orc snorts loudly, not quite as decorous as the Speaker. "By the Host, Speaker, I hope it is. I'll whip ye up a special batch o' th' Dark Honey sauce, just in case, go better wit' that stick o' yers than the Sweet an' Sour would."

    The Speaker chuckles at the bartender's joke. "I look forward to it. As for your question, Magistrate, I'm sure my granddaughter has played pretend in more nooks and crannies in the forest than the hobs will ever find. The Vale has plenty of hiding places for raiding parties, and the Seawall Pass is only a few dozen miles away, plenty close enough for a base of operations. We have...allies...in the forest who could help us seek them out, but that could take quite some time."
    Better to DM in Baator than play in Celestia
    You can just call me Dice; that's how I roll.


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    Quote Originally Posted by abadguy View Post
    Darn you PoDL for making me care about a bunch of NPC Commoners!
    Won a cookie for this, won everything for this

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