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  1. - Top - End - #31
    Barbarian in the Playground
     
    Griffon

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    Default Re: From Across the Multiverse to Barovia: Expedition to Castle Ravenloft (IC)

    T'rissante

    T'riss eyes August for a moment as he steps beyond the circle. When he returns unharmed, she lets out the breath she didn't realize she was holding.

    T'riss reaches out and carefully takes on of the goose berries. She nods her thanks.

    As August turns away, she sniffs it and watches for a moment to see what the others do. Seeing no ill affect the others, she takes a small nibble from her own berry.

    The berry was sweet, almost grapelike but firmer. She finished the berry and reaching to her waist follows it with a sip of water.

    She listens quietly as the conversation turns to death and the realms there in.

    She glances around, "This does not look like The Dark Maiden's realm, nor the wall of faithless, she thinks to herself.

    I agree with the Professor. Trissaste adds suddenly, I do not think we are dead. For if I died, I would eithe rstand before the Dark Maiden for her judgement or be cast into the wall of Faithless...neither place this is.

    She pauses for second. Perhaps we should follow the healer's suggestion,...if the village is lit, perhaps there are those who can illuminate us to what realm we have been called?
    Last edited by Fireheart; 2012-05-01 at 08:36 AM.

  2. - Top - End - #32
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    "Certainly, I think we're nearly ready. Just a moment." Unrolling a blanket from the horse, August reveals a worn longsword and a yew longbow, which he takes a minute to string before strapping both items onto his person. That done, he removes a small orb of cloudy glass from a twist of cloth at his belt, and the fog is illuminated by a warm golden glow.

    "That should do it," he concludes, taking the horse's reins in one hand and holding the light in the other. "Onward to new discoveries!"

    "I, too, have seen shades of the dead, although never have I seen one return to the body it held in life," he continues as they walk. "But I cannot heal Aswin's wounds, and if they cause no pain and do not hamper him, then I do not think they are cursed, either. It does sound very much like a shade's existence."
    Last edited by Sallera; 2012-05-01 at 09:31 AM.
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  3. - Top - End - #33
    Firbolg in the Playground
     
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    "Onward then. Answers and light lay ahead, let us leave this dark forest." Arthros taps his staff on the ground, then starts walking toward the village, leaning lightly on it for support, still shaken from his sudden passage.

  4. - Top - End - #34
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    ElfPirate

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    Arya Skye

    "It is an honour to meet you all then. I am no stranger to the creatures of other planes, for my order is sworn to shield all from the horrors of the abyss."

    Arya wondered who these men and women were, they spoke of being 'chosen', but Arya was confused as to who would want such a diverse group.
    "We were all brought here, by something. This was no random twist of the fates. Could we trace this being's work?"

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    "Ah, the ways of the Fair Folk are often difficult to fathom - though I mean no offense, Lady T'rissante. Whoever brought us here may choose to appear to us in time, but if not, we must assume the simple matter of our presence satisfies them, for seeking them out directly is a task that will never bear fruit. We may have been chosen to accomplish some great task, or simply for sport."

    August holds the glowing orb a bit higher, although its light barely penetrates the fog. "As you can see, these mists conceal all who do not wish to be found, while our destination remains in sight. I have sometimes wondered if only the parts of the woods where the interesting gatherings occur are truly real. These paths in between may exist only at the wish of those who use them."
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  6. - Top - End - #36
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    The group is not far from their destination, but poor light and the professor's slow gait mean that they don't arrive until the sun begins to show over the horizon.

    The village is small, barely deserving the title. There are perhaps twenty large houses and a tavern along a single street, surrounded by farms. All the buildings are simply constructed, with hewn timber walls and thatch roofs. Candles and oil lamps sit in the windowsills of each house; this is clearly the light you saw in the fog.

    It's the middle of harvest, and the farmers and their wives are already up. Many are clearly taking their breakfast in liquid form at the tavern, which, if you understand the pictographic sign correctly, is named something like "The Crow's Nest."
    Greenman by Bradakhan/Autumn Greenman by Sgt. Pepper/Winter Greenman by gurgleflep/Spring Greenman by Comissar

  7. - Top - End - #37
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    Arthros shrugs as he approaches the tavern. "Quaint. I suppose this is as good a place as any to make our inquiries. A bit early for a drink though." He eyes the large blond man. Though, from what some have said, perhaps not too early for all.

  8. - Top - End - #38
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    ElfPirate

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    Arya Skye, Catfolk Knight

    Arya stalks along the road, eyeing the signs of civilisation wearily. In her world men kept to their cities, and no settlement of this size would have survived the rigours of life on the Far Plains. Only the 'Folk new the ways of the savannah truly.

    She kept a watch for others, but decided to stay beside these other 'chosen' and see who exactly thought their business more important than her own.

  9. - Top - End - #39
    Barbarian in the Playground
     
    Griffon

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    T'rissaste

    T'riss walks with the others toward the village, one hand always near her rapier, and frequently looking behind her.

    As covertly as possible, she watches the others trying to discern more about them.

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    (It would help if I learned how to spell the characters name!)

    T'riss is looking for holy symbols that she might recognize.
    Spot?
    (1d20+11)[19]

  10. - Top - End - #40
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    August tucks the glowing orb away as the sun rises, returning his weapons to their concealed storage once the village comes into sight. "Indeed, but we need not drink to carry a conversation. It is strange to find so many people living here, though."

    Tying his horse outside the tavern, August pushes open the door, looking around for a bartender of some sort. "Hello there! We are newly arrived to these woods, and somewhat disoriented; could you perhaps provide us with the name of this fiefdom?"
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  11. - Top - End - #41
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    Kobold

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    The professor brings up the rear of the group, making heavy use of his cane. It is apparent that the embellish walking stick is not just for show, as every step with his right foot is accompanied by a heavier and heavier lean as time goes on. The trip is often punctuated by him stopping for a breath, leaning against a nearby tree.

    "Just...give me a moment, I'll be right along, no worry."

    While the man has shown to have a keen intellect thus far, it seems unlikely that he could be anything but a hindrance if true danger were to set upon them. He remains quiet about further thoughts on the afterlife...against so many, it appears that maybe such things work differently here.

  12. - Top - End - #42
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    Default Re: From Across the Multiverse to Barovia: Expedition to Castle Ravenloft (IC)

    The tavern, which was filled with the half-awake grumbling of the farmers, grows quiet as you enter. The barkeep, a weedy looking man of perhaps forty, gestures to a boy—perhaps his son—and whispers in his ear before answering you.

    "We haven't had many Travelers recently," he says in a thick accent. You get the impression that he thinks of "Traveler" as some sort of title.

    "Welcome to the township of Svalich, in the Domain of Barovia. I'm Costica, son of Stefan. Can I get you something to eat, to drink? I imagine you must be weary, coming as you are from, where, Hazlan? Markovia? Nova Vaasa?" He swallows suddenly, noticing Arya for the first time. "Sri Raji?"

    @Sallera, Stack, Fireheart
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    You notice that several of the farmers have boils, blotchy skin, or clouded eyes, while others exhibit nervous tics or jump when someone drops a tankard.


    @Stack
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    Costica's accent reminds you somewhat of the inhabitants of the far northeastern reaches of Karrnath.


    @Fireheart
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    You don't see any religious symbols you recognize, but Costica wears a bone pendent shaped like some sort of bird. It seems to be splotched with decay.

    Costica's accent is somewhat reminiscent of that of the people of the Galena Mountains, north of Ravens Bluff.


    @Mahrke
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    Costica's accent is definitely central European, perhaps Czech or Romanian, but reminds you of nothing so much as bad movies.


    @Aswin
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    You don't quite recognize Costica's accent, but you imagine that if you exaggerated the accents of the traders that visited your lands from the south, it might come close.


    @Arya, Sallera
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    Costica's accent is intelligible, but it sounds like nothing you've ever heard.
    Greenman by Bradakhan/Autumn Greenman by Sgt. Pepper/Winter Greenman by gurgleflep/Spring Greenman by Comissar

  13. - Top - End - #43
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    Kobold

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    The aging human limps over to the nearest empty seat, and falls into it with a sigh of relief, leaning forward and rubbing at his right knee. He looks around, pushing glasses further up onto the bridge of his nose as he examines the surroundings...more and more it was sinking in. He really -was- in the far past...this was a period inn. The Renaissance recreations hadn't really done any justice to it...though he supposed that this was very likely not even Earth's history to begin with.

    "You seem like you've seen our sort before." He ponders aloud, before turning his gaze to the barkeep. "I am Professor Isaac Pellivander. Tell me, how do these Travelers normally arrive in this place? And for that matter, what -is- this place, Costica?"

    The curious floating device that is his companion A.I. moves to hover just over his left shoulder, silent but for a very soft humming from the effort to remain aloft.
    Last edited by Mahrke; 2012-05-02 at 01:43 AM.

  14. - Top - End - #44
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    Costica looks at the professor, somewhat puzzled. "I'm not sure what you mean, sir. This is just what I said, the township of Svalich, in Barovia."

    "As for other Travelers, they usually arrive the same way I assume you did. They walk, or ride. Though, of course, the mists make things a bit more complicated than that sounds."
    Greenman by Bradakhan/Autumn Greenman by Sgt. Pepper/Winter Greenman by gurgleflep/Spring Greenman by Comissar

  15. - Top - End - #45
    Barbarian in the Playground
     
    Kobold

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    Isaac casts a put-upon look to the strangers he landed in this place with, and looks back to Costica.

    "Forgive me, I should be clearer. I do not believe any of us...-intended- to come here...to Barovia. Hmm... He ponders for a moment, trying to work out how to best put his thoughts so as to not incite panick, or disbelief...though the good professor is not quite a master orator..."We are all from different lands...and were brought here, not of our own volition. The lands we are from though...I do not believe they are any you know of. I am from London...the black elf there, she claimed to be from somewhere called Faerun. The boy thinks this is a fey forest...and the prodigious warrior believes this to be the afterlife, you see? So perhaps you can explain the workings of this place, er....this -world- to us, as if we were children. "

    The aging man looks upon him hopefully...though it suddenly occurs to him that, if the old trope is true, he has no gold with which to pay this man for information or drink. Not unless he accepts credchips.
    Last edited by Mahrke; 2012-05-02 at 04:32 AM.

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    ElfPirate

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    Arya Skye, Catfolk Knight

    Arya watches these exchanges with attentive eyes, but does not seek to interfere. This place strikes her as vulnerable, unprotected as do many of her companions. There is honour in protecting the weak. She reminded herself. Even if they were hairless-mole-men.

  17. - Top - End - #47
    Barbarian in the Playground
     
    Griffon

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    Trissaste

    Triss smiles as the Proffessor describes her as a black elf. "That's the politest description I've heard for the Ssri-tel-quessir." she thinks. She listens as the old man tries to explain to the villagers where they come from. She racks her own memory for any reccollection of the country Barovia.

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    (OOC: Knowledge Geography (1d20+5)[11])


    "Be Kind." T'riss hears Faeryl's whisper.

    Quietly she sidles over to the professor, "I have some small talent in the art of massage," she says softly, "In the scouts, we often used massage for sore muscles after outings. Perhaps I can help your leg?" she offers as she kneels beside him.

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    (OOC: It won't really do anything...she has no ranks in anything.)
    Last edited by Fireheart; 2012-05-02 at 07:05 AM.

  18. - Top - End - #48
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    Arthros looks around, seeing the afflictions of common folk on many faces. "Are any in need of treatment? I am able to cure many maladies. I could see what I can do while we discuss other matters." No matter where you go, there will be those that need you. Affliction knows no plane.

    "About the mists, you make it sound as if they are more than common weather?

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    "Barovia... it is a portentous-sounding name." August nods sagely, the gesture somehow managing to avoid looking silly despite his youth. "My companions and I entered this domain through the nearby circle, but we were all invited from different lands, as Isaac says. I am called August, and my other companions are Arthros, Aswin, Arya, and T'rissaste."

    "Do tell me, who rules this domain? Is there some great gathering scheduled, for which we may have been invited?"
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  20. - Top - End - #50
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    Kobold

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    The drow's query seems to take Isaac be surprise, but he lets out a short chuckle as she kneels by him. "I'm afraid there's not too much anyone can do for me. Old age is a beast that can be fought, but never slain." He lets out a whistful sigh, "But then again, I'm not yet fool enough to turn down a massage from a pretty woman."

    The professor adjusts his position, a bit, still contemplating the gravity of the current situation...but the fact that this man seemed to think they weren't so unusual gave him hope. It meant that wasn't -truely- extraordinary...that there might be a way home.

    "Scouts, you say?" The professor remarks, "You were in a military of some sort, then?"

  21. - Top - End - #51
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    Costica looks somewhat confused at the flurry of questions, but regains his composure by rubbing his glasses on a handkerchief. "My grandfather said the Mists can sometimes play strange tricks on the mind. Here, sit down and I'll answer your questions as best I can."

    Costica calls up the stairs and a plump woman, presumably his wife, comes down and stands behind the counter while the barkeep clears off an abandoned table. He invites you to sit while he pours himself a tankard of some pale-looking beer.

    "To answer your question first, sir," he says to Isaac, "I'm not sure what to say. If this is the afterlife, surely we committed horrific deeds in life. But then, I don't remember doing anything of the sort to deserve living here, and what's the point of punishing someone who can't remember their crimes?" He smiles mirthlessly. "As I said, this Domain is called Boravia. The entire land—Boravia, Nova Vaasa, Sri Raji, all the others—is called Ravenloft, though whether it's named after the castle or the castle is named after it I can't say. I'm not sure how to describe it, since I've only ever lived here. Perhaps you be more specific."

    He turns to August, "As for your question, my dear boy, Barovia is ruled by Count Strahd. Well, ruled is a strong word. He takes a tenth of the harvest, makes sure the wolves and the Vistani don't attack us, and mostly leaves us alone. They say he goes to the town of Barovia on occasion, and I can only thank heaven that he doesn't pay such respects on our little town."

    "I've never heard of the Count ever inviting anyone to anything. Not that anyone seeks out an invitation to the castle."

    "The Mists," he says to Arthros, "well, they're what separate the domains. Sometimes you can walk into the mists and come out someplace else, but mostly you just get lost and wander back to where you came from."

    "If you have some skill at healing, I think many here would appreciate your help. I don't know what you could do, though. The afflictions so many of us suffer seem to seep out of the very soil here."

    @Fireheart
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    You have, of course, never heard of Barovia, nor of any of the other domains or towns he's mentioned.


    @Stack
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    A diplomacy check will be necessary to get a villager to conset to being examined, and a heal check to do the examination.
    Greenman by Bradakhan/Autumn Greenman by Sgt. Pepper/Winter Greenman by gurgleflep/Spring Greenman by Comissar

  22. - Top - End - #52
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    "Ah, so perhaps it is not that the paths exist at the will of the walker, but that the fixed places join hands when they pass closely enough, and one present at the right time can walk the ephemeral roads." August appears quite pleased by the revelation, although he quickly returns to more serious matters.

    "Is the Count so fearsome that you pray for his absence, or is it caprice that accompanies his visits? And this affliction you describe... is it truly the soil that is cursed, or was that but a manner of speech? I have access to the last blessings of a tree-spirit, you see, and one of them can sometimes counter such maladies."
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  23. - Top - End - #53
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    Arya Skye, Catfolk Knight

    Arya listened to all of this with a mounting ominous feeling.
    Cursed Soil? Devilish mists? And this Count Strahd, a ruler whom they feared to meet.

    Truly not a place one would care to inhabit, but for those who did, the beaten and downtrodden, they were a knight's duty.


    She kept her peace as August spoke of strange concepts she couldn't keep up with, but ventured her own information.

    "I know a little of the working of the worlds," she added, stiffly, "For the Far Plains are on the edge of existence and we have learnt that many things fall from the other realms and are washed up on our shores. Yet, I have never known an entity to reach out and bring anyone directly to its side. I am not a renowned thinker to comprehend the laws of this realm, but know that my honour will serve more unfailingly than the fickle attentions of knowledge and understanding."

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    Arthros nods at the man's explanations, such as they are. "It does not sound like any world I know of, but my knowledge is limited regarding such things. Perhaps there are more planes then my teacher knew. But here we are, so I will obey my oaths."

    He scans the room for the most sorely afflicted villager present. "Greetings. As you heard, I am Arthros Silvereye, a traveling healer. I might be able to tend relieve the condition that seems to trouble you, if not banish it entirely. Would you consent to my taking a look?"

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    dndsheets is down, can't find my modifiers, so I'll try to guess
    diplomacy (1d20+14)[32] i think its one shy of maxed, so 8+6 CHA
    heal (1d20+5)[18] i think I have a few points, no Wis, but a free skill focus for +3

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    "I meant it as a figure of speech, master August, but it might well be true. The crops grow fine, so long as the summers are warm enough, but these boils and suppurations have plagued us at least as long as my grandfather could remember. It seems to have grown worse since I was a boy, though."

    "Our count, well, perhaps I ought not to have said that. I know only what I have heard from traders and Vistani. They say that every tenyear he becomes enamored of a young woman, always the one woman most likely to reject his advances. Inevitably she does so, and inevitably she dies, either by her own hand or in some tragic accident." Costica shakes his head sadly. "I would not wish that on the daughter of my worst enemy."


    The farmer Arthros approaches grunts noncommitally and rolls up his sleeves.

    @Stack
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    You can see where the skin is peeling off in long strips, leaving tender red splotches. You also notice that, even though the man is only in his twenties, he is starting to develop cataracts. You don't recognize the symptoms as belonging to any disease you're familiar with, but you're certain it's supernatural.
    Greenman by Bradakhan/Autumn Greenman by Sgt. Pepper/Winter Greenman by gurgleflep/Spring Greenman by Comissar

  26. - Top - End - #56
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    Griffon

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    Default Re: From Across the Multiverse to Barovia: Expedition to Castle Ravenloft (IC)

    "Scouts, you say?" The professor remarks, "You were in a military of some sort, then?"

    Triss listens to the conversation between August, Arthros and the bartender as she applies gentle pressure to the old man's leg. Even though she knows it will not help the aging knee; hopefully, it will at least ease his pain.

    She jumps when the catfolk speaks. "She talks like a Purple Knight."

    Turning her attention back to Isaac, she replies softly,
    "Sort of. Where I come from, each house has its own militia that defends the House from attack or leads attacks on other houses. Ours was formed of Regulars and the Scouts. The scouts were mainly responsible for information gathering and hunting. I recieved most of my training from the House Weaponsmaster. Since I had no talent in the Art nor been called by either of the Goddesses our people worshipped, I was lucky enough to be moderately skilled with the blade."


    She thinks, "I suppose that's an easy enough way to describe the ambitious, sadistic, treachorous world I grew up in."

  27. - Top - End - #57
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    August shakes his head sadly. "It sounds like a greater curse than such simple measures will remedy, then, but for now, there is no harm in trying. I was bidden to spread his blessings wherever they might be needed." Reaching up to the wooden hand around his neck, August bends the thumb inward to join the third finger, which has not straightened since he used it to transform the berries. A subtle wave of energy flows outward, swiftly passing through the walls and brushing faint motes of light from anything living as it washes over the tavern's patrons. "It will only take effect out to half a mile or so, but it costs little to give."

    "Capricious indeed," he remarks of the Count. Now this was starting to sound more familiar. "Is the time approaching, then, when he will pay his next visit?"

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    Plant Growth, in enrichment mode, because we may as well.
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  28. - Top - End - #58
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    Arthros sighs as he fails to identify the malady. Supernatural, what would be blighting this poor town with a magic disease? Some curse? Let us see what can be done for it.

    His hand starts to glow softly as he touches his patient again, healing energy flowing from one to the other.

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    cleanse disease class feature, 0/1 left for the day, as remove disease CL 6
    Last edited by stack; 2012-05-03 at 10:03 AM.

  29. - Top - End - #59
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    Kobold

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    Default Re: From Across the Multiverse to Barovia: Expedition to Castle Ravenloft (IC)

    Isaac nods at the words of the of the drow, trying to relax. On any other day, the words of the nearby cat creature might've drawn his ire and a debate...but right now? There were more pressing worries than an insult to the values of academia. Besides, he figured he needed as many friends as he could find in this place.

    "You would be surprised, I think, to know that your own world is not so different from mine, Trissaste. Indeed, many would say that state of affairs is precisely what is wrong with the world; a constant, secret war raging between those that should've been united." Indeed, though his own world was a far cry from the medieval realm that this elf came from, the comparison between drow houses and earth megacorporations was apt, if lacking scale.

    His gaze moves at first to the boy that had woken just after him, and then to the man that looked more his own age...both using magic as if it was natural and normal. Then again, he figured that perhaps it was normal to those that had grown up with it their entire lives. He looks to Costica now.

    "I am afraid that every answer you bring merely plants the seeds of more questions, old chap. Would you perhaps have a library here? Or some other repository of knowledge?"

  30. - Top - End - #60
    Firbolg in the Playground
     
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    Default Re: From Across the Multiverse to Barovia: Expedition to Castle Ravenloft (IC)

    Aswin is silent for a long time, taking in everything said around him. "What is this place? I know I died... Am I in hell?" he finally whispers, though the question wasn't directed at anyone as he blankly stared into nothingness. He expected eternal bliss and competion with his peers, and instead he got this, feeling thoroughly lost.

    Suddenly, something inside him seemed to snap, and he brought his fist down on the table with crushing force as he stood up. "Drifa, kom!" he called out forcefully, and a moment later a huge snow-white wolf clad in ornamental armor appeared beside him. "It doesn't matter what place this is. If I'm still alive, I can help those in need, and if I am dead and this is the afterlife then we have to fix it! Strange mists, mysterious diseases, a cursed count - I'll have none of it! You may not be the einherjar I thought to meet, but still, I call upon you to seek out whatever evil plagues this land. To this I pledge my strength, my life and my soul, may the Aesir and Vaenir be witness to my words."

    Spoiler
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    strength check - (1d20+10)[16] and counting as large

    let's see if I manage to break the table
    Not a member of the Bayesian Conspiracy. Honestly. Probably. Maybe.
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