The Order of the Stick: Utterly Dwarfed
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  1. - Top - End - #1
    Ettin in the Playground
     
    John Cribati's Avatar

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    The Crimson Fang Inn and Tavern is well-known as the starting point for the Order of the Ruby Vipers. It sees many customers and patrons, and with all the money flowing in, it's far from seedy- in fact, it's kept rather clean and tidy, despite the occasional rowdy laughter and spilled drink.

    It's also where you decide to look first. After all, it's practically a museum dedicated to your parents. If anyone, anywhere has information, it probably comes through here.

    By some machination of fate itself, you all seem to be here at the same time.

    The right time.

    Formerly known as "Herpestidae."
    Most of my posts are done by mobile. Expect typos.
    Quote Originally Posted by Frozen_Feet View Post
    Things don't magically stop being fun when you reach a certain age.

  2. - Top - End - #2
    Dwarf in the Playground
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    Zasheir paused at the door of the Crimson Fang and considered. The customers who entered ahead of him were better dressed than he was. His clothes and armor were of middling quality at best and the dirt from the road wasn't doing them any favours. He muttered a few words and his clothes seemed cleaner and slightly less frayed. He made sure his hair covered his ears and went in.

    While ordering a drink, Zasheir surveyed the other guests. Previously he would have been looking the affluent and overconfident, potential prey for the crew he used to work with. Now, though, he was on his own and looking for clues to his mother's past. This establishment had spent years trading on her reputation, all Zasheir wanted in exchange was a contact. Preferably with a former associate but Zasheir would settle for a scholar or similar, he didn't expect his search to be quick or straightforward.

    Spoiler
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    Zasheir casts Disguise Self on himself, but makes the effects on his appearance subtle.

  3. - Top - End - #3
    Barbarian in the Playground
     
    BardGuy

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    As Maximus approached the sign out front of the building, he took out a letter and unfolded it.
    The Crimson Fang Inn and Tavern... he verified from the letter.

    He looked back to the letter, and reread the last few lines again,
    "The Crimson Fang is where you'll find what you seek, son. You will do great things. Please remember, Torm acts through you - you are what separates the light from the darkness. I am proud of you, Son.

    ~Elrich


    He'd read it so much on his trek to the Tavern that it was ingrained in his mind. "You are what separates the light from the darkness"

    Maximus took a deep breath in, and turned his gaze upwards to the tavern.

    He walked forward, with a shaky sense of confidence. Maximus was not a shaky man, though. He stood a hefty 6'2, and was on the better side of 200 lbs. He was naturally athletic, but clearly had been training - as someone doesn't just LOOK like that naturally. His father's shield secured to his back, his spear in his hand, he continued forward.

    As he opened the front door, a dimly lit room spanned his vision ahead. He stepped through the threshold into the Tavern, and symbolically, into the beginning of his story.

    Maximus scanned the room. He saw no one of note, a few people at the bar sharing a flaggon, a father pointing his son's stair to a plaque on the wall engraved with a familiar symbol, a serpent. Next to it, the mounted head of a particularly foul looking creature. In fact, the walls were laden with different accolades, accomplishments, and conquests of his fathers party.

    Maximus felt...dwarfed. Minuscule, compared to these feats logged in the history books. How was he to live up to...all of this?

    He stepped forward, not sure what he was looking for, he walked up to the bar and ordered a drink, and observed the patrons...looking for some kind of sign...
    Last edited by Tallytrev813; 2019-06-13 at 11:48 AM.
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  4. - Top - End - #4
    Ogre in the Playground
     
    Hypersmith's Avatar

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    Malagak was in a sour mood, and it showed from the moment he walked through the door. All this wealth. All this prestige. Shameful. He's a typically huge half-orc at just short of seven feet, brownish-red eyes deep set in a large skull, with a slight underbite - enough to allow two small snaggletoothed canines to poke out over his upper lip. His skin is far paler than the usual mottled greens of his kind, but his large frame and slightly pointed ears leaves no question of his heritage.

    He tries not to let his scowl be too obvious - it was bad manners - but the tightly drawn face he puts on instead is just as off putting. He stands aimlessly, not seeking to drink, simply watching the other patrons go about their business for the day.
    The moon sees nothing of this. She is bald and wild.
    And the message of the yew tree is blackness - blackness and silence.

  5. - Top - End - #5
    Barbarian in the Playground
     
    BardGuy

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    Maximus, who had taken up a position leaning against the bar sipping on his flagon of ale, felt the air sucked from the room. The barkeep took a long pause with his rag he was cleaning a cup with as his mouth remained open and stagnant, his skin went somewhat pale.

    Maximus looked to his left, to his right, patrons had frozen in their boots, any movement was cautious and calculated, everyone's sight seemed fixated behind Max, towards the door. A small child, tugging on his fathers hand, exclaimed A Dragon, dad! Look! It's a Dragon! Maximus took a slow turn, wrenching his neck around, mindful of his drink he's gripping in his hand.

    An Orc stands by the door, motionless...scowling. Maximus had never seen an Orc before, and the creatures facial expression was undecipherable to him - though it appeared as though maybe he needed to use the facilities? Max couldn't be sure. He towered by the door, intentions unclear, scanning the room.

    You! Sir! Can I interest you in a drink, or have ye some other intentions for your afternoon? He attempted to defuse the room, deescalation was an art his father had taught him. The best fight is the one avoided with words he'd always said.

    Maximus raised his flagon in a friendly but hesitant manner, encouraging the monstrous humanoid.
    Last edited by Tallytrev813; 2019-06-13 at 01:13 PM.
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  6. - Top - End - #6
    Ettin in the Playground
     
    John Cribati's Avatar

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    Zashier takes his drink to one of the smaller tables- it's built for two, but at the moment the second stool is unoccupied. A few tables away, a hooded figure sitting by themself seems to be similarly scoping out the place. Their attention is initially drawn to the surly-looking orc near the entrance, but they look around for a while, performing an obvious double-take once their gaze passes over Zashier. In the split second of eye contact, Zashier sees a glimmer in the figure's eye.

    They do not approach, but instead continue to scope out the place

    Formerly known as "Herpestidae."
    Most of my posts are done by mobile. Expect typos.
    Quote Originally Posted by Frozen_Feet View Post
    Things don't magically stop being fun when you reach a certain age.

  7. - Top - End - #7
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    Hypersmith's Avatar

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    Malagak frowns at the human approaching him. It irritates him beyond reasonable means to have the man approach him so amicably when he himself was in such a sour mood. So clearly a shot at keeping things peaceful that it felt insulting. Can't a man stand around and frown in peace, without other's sensitive little spawn making him out to vs a monster? To make matters worse, he's upset at his own irritation, and with no outlet but to frown even deeper.

    He finally speaks to the man, his voice grating. Room be damned. "Skip the stupid tactics and just tell me I'm scary. Don't you have anything better to do than butt into my business?"
    His mood makes his words harsher than usual, but there's an evil satisfaction in letting that mood loose on others. He'll regret it later.
    Last edited by Hypersmith; 2019-06-14 at 05:30 AM.
    The moon sees nothing of this. She is bald and wild.
    And the message of the yew tree is blackness - blackness and silence.

  8. - Top - End - #8
    Barbarian in the Playground
     
    BardGuy

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    Aye, I do have something better to do... Maximusí jovial tone recedes. His mug lowers to his side, and his tone lowers. ...and thatís ensuring these people are safe. Maximus takes a sip of his drink, attempting to appear confident by utilizing a drawn out pause in a tense environment. While Max had been trained by his father, this was his first encounter with a Orc...and a rather large one at that. What do you think? A job well done? Can I focus on something else...or is there still...work to do?
    Last edited by Tallytrev813; 2019-06-16 at 12:29 PM.
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  9. - Top - End - #9
    Ogre in the Playground
     
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    Malagak is unfazed by the man's attempts. If anything, his bravado only makes him lean further into his anger. "Aye there's work to do. Go hunt a bear. Go kill a monster. At present, your idea of protection is aggravating a man minding his own business. Or is that you can't see an orc without thinking it's on the verge of attacking someone?" He grimaces, a show of teeth far more than a smile, carefully crossing his arms. "Go on. Show them how big a hero you are, bare your blade at the big bad orc who's here for a drink."
    The moon sees nothing of this. She is bald and wild.
    And the message of the yew tree is blackness - blackness and silence.

  10. - Top - End - #10
    Ettin in the Playground
     
    John Cribati's Avatar

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    The cloaked woman approaches the two arguing men.

    "No need to cause such a scene. It's happy hour! Buy a drink! I'd rather not have the mood ruined by a foolish misunderstanding." Here, she gets between them and gives Maximus a small, but firm, shove back, before turning to address Malagak in orcish. "<You'll find, Little Cousin, that your ire is ill spent on ignorant younglings such as him. It's best to save it for the truly belligerent humans.>>"

    Spoiler: Malagak, and anyone else who speaks Orcish
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    While you can understand her well enough, you can tell that she speaks with some sort of a regional accent and dialect.

    Formerly known as "Herpestidae."
    Most of my posts are done by mobile. Expect typos.
    Quote Originally Posted by Frozen_Feet View Post
    Things don't magically stop being fun when you reach a certain age.

  11. - Top - End - #11
    Ogre in the Playground
     
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    Pleasently surprised to find someone else speaking orcish, accent or not, Malagak has the decency to appear a little sheepish at having to be told off by someone smaller than him. He replies in kind. <<You're right. But little cousin? Do I know you?>>
    The moon sees nothing of this. She is bald and wild.
    And the message of the yew tree is blackness - blackness and silence.

  12. - Top - End - #12
    Ettin in the Playground
     
    John Cribati's Avatar

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    "<<Probably not. It's just something we say where I'm from. We call the green orcs our 'Cousins from the valley'.>>" She pulls her cloak back.

    Her skin is more grey than green, and her featires are overall softer than you'd expect from an orc.

    Maximus and Malagak, roll Knowledge. Malagak has advantage.

    Spoiler: [S]Knowledge[/S] History Check Results
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    Spoiler: DC 5
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    She's an Orc from the northern mountains, at the border between human and Dwarven lands.
    Spoiler: DC 10
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    Mountain Orcs tend to be a bit pudgier as insulation against the cold, but are no less muscular beneath it
    Spoiler: DC15
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    Instead of furry ears like most orcs, Mountain orcs have furry backs.
    The woman talking to Malagak doesn't seem to be a full-blooded Orc.
    Spoiler: DC 20
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    It's not common for a mountain orc to come this far south. At least, not on their own.

    Last edited by John Cribati; 2019-06-16 at 06:27 PM.

    Formerly known as "Herpestidae."
    Most of my posts are done by mobile. Expect typos.
    Quote Originally Posted by Frozen_Feet View Post
    Things don't magically stop being fun when you reach a certain age.

  13. - Top - End - #13
    Barbarian in the Playground
     
    BardGuy

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    Maximus braced his momentum from the backward nudge with a step. He collected himself, and looked about the room, then up at the walls and achievements again, realizing his misstep before returning to his drink. He was frustrated - all the pressure spread about the room weighing down on him had affected him, creating problems to solve where there were none. Attempting to manufacture heroism. He gulped his drink down, embarrassed, as the two conversed in a foreign tongue. Maximus paid for his drink and headed for the door, feeling inclined to get out from under his fathers achievements. Fresh air would do him good, he thought...he took a last look up at the pictures above the bar...
    Last edited by Tallytrev813; 2019-06-16 at 06:26 PM.
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    Aldaroth - IC

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  14. - Top - End - #14
    Ettin in the Playground
     
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    Maximus's eyes scan the wall of achievements yet again, and as if in mockery of his thoughts, he sees his father's face.

    It's a portrait of some sort, that takes up a good amount of space on the wall above the bar- it's a surprise you missed it.

    The back row consists of three human men. Elric the Pious- a tall, bearded Knight in brilliant armor is on the left. On the right, a slightly shorter but much brawnier man in heavier armor. They're both smiling broadly, with an arm slung over the man in between, who is much more averagely built, and trying to appear nonchalant by picking his fingernails with a knife.

    An elven maid takes up the center of the front row, wearing light chainmail with and weilding a glittering dagger, its sheath bearing the blank scroll and lit candle of Oghma, god of Knowledge. An orcmaid is on either side of her. The young woman on the right has a flowing woodsman's cloak and is brandishing a spear made of fine wood. The other is chubbier and softer-looking, with grey skin. She's resting a massive wood-and-stone club across her shoulder.

    (Maximus can still make that Knowledge History check if he so desires)

    Formerly known as "Herpestidae."
    Most of my posts are done by mobile. Expect typos.
    Quote Originally Posted by Frozen_Feet View Post
    Things don't magically stop being fun when you reach a certain age.

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    Ogre in the Playground
     
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    <<I haven't much experience with other types of orcs myself, unfortunately. But cousin seems an appropriate title.>> Malagak grunts, signaling the barkeep to bring a drink over. <<So what brings a rare specimen like you all the way out here alone? Are you alone?>>
    Malagaks earlier tension seems to melt away quicker by the minute as he speaks to the orc, his lip curling into an appreciative smile.
    The moon sees nothing of this. She is bald and wild.
    And the message of the yew tree is blackness - blackness and silence.

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    Dwarf in the Playground
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    Zasheir spotted the reaction from the hooded figure and would have approached her, but she soon had her hands full stopping a fight from breaking out between the orc and the human and Zasheir wasn't going to get in her way while she smoothed things over.

    "Mind if I sit here?" Zasheir asked as he approached a table.
    "The Vipers certainly draw a crowd these days, I wonder if they were quite as popular back when they were actually here?"

    Zasheir discreetly kept an eye on the hooded figure while he started working the room. He wanted to know why he drew her attention and would find a pretext to talk to her as soon as it seemed reasonable to do so.

    Edit: Granma and spilling
    Last edited by aguaracu; 2019-06-19 at 05:35 PM.

  17. - Top - End - #17
    Ettin in the Playground
     
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hypersmith View Post
    <<I haven't much experience with other types of orcs myself, unfortunately. But cousin seems an appropriate title.>> Malagak grunts, signaling the barkeep to bring a drink over. <<So what brings a rare specimen like you all the way out here alone? Are you alone?>>
    Malagaks earlier tension seems to melt away quicker by the minute as he speaks to the orc, his lip curling into an appreciative smile.
    "<<I have family in the area.>>" Her tone is friendly, but the deflection is obvious. "<<As to what I'm doing here, I'm researching an odd magical item. What about you?>>"

    Quote Originally Posted by aguaracu View Post
    "Mind if I sit here?" Zasheir asks as he approached a table.
    "The Vipers certainly draw a crowd these days, I wonder if they were quite as popular back when they were actually here?"
    The table's occupants are three young, bright-eyed humans; A girl with a longbow and wearing hunting attire, with a big dog lounging by her feet; A lithe young man in a dark amber acolyte's robe whose face is tattoed with an odd symbol; and a burly young woman who seems to be the oldest of the bunch (for whatever that's worth), wearing a grey monk's habit.

    "Just in these parts initially," the hunter says. "They didn't really get on the map until they stopped Burghann and Dhok from destroying the castle Amondra. Name's Claire by the way. This is Zann." She nudges at her hound, which snuffles out what is presumably a greeting.

    "Evan," says the tattooed boy.

    "Jess."
    Last edited by John Cribati; 2019-06-19 at 05:12 PM.

    Formerly known as "Herpestidae."
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    Quote Originally Posted by Frozen_Feet View Post
    Things don't magically stop being fun when you reach a certain age.

  18. - Top - End - #18
    Ogre in the Playground
     
    Hypersmith's Avatar

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    Malagak frowns, gesturing a large hand towards the pictures on the wall.
    <<I came to see history.>>
    He's clearly unwilling to expand his explanation.
    <<The humans around here give you trouble before?>>
    Last edited by Hypersmith; 2019-06-19 at 04:36 AM.
    The moon sees nothing of this. She is bald and wild.
    And the message of the yew tree is blackness - blackness and silence.

  19. - Top - End - #19
    Dwarf in the Playground
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    "Zash." he replied as he sat down gingerly, making sure to not tread on the dog's tail. "Are there people from back then still around?"

    Spoiler
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    So, ranger, cleric (or sorcerer? or some other magic user?) and monk?
    Zasheir will network, make contacts and try to get any hint of possible sources relating to the Fangs.

  20. - Top - End - #20
    Ettin in the Playground
     
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hypersmith View Post
    <<The humans around here give you trouble before?>>
    "<<The surrounding area has always been more diverse. Humans who actually live around here are used to it. It's the folks from out of town who do the most meddling.>>"

    Quote Originally Posted by aguaracu View Post
    "Zash." he replied as he sat down gingerly, making sure to not tread on the dog's tail. "Are there people from back then still around?"
    "Some of the older folks at the mages' guild have some stories if that's what you're looking for." Evan offers.

    Jess scoffs at that.
    "Half-drunk tall tales, more like. If you're interested in actual history, you want to go to the temple of Oghma. Got an immense library. Not very well sorted, though.

    Formerly known as "Herpestidae."
    Most of my posts are done by mobile. Expect typos.
    Quote Originally Posted by Frozen_Feet View Post
    Things don't magically stop being fun when you reach a certain age.

  21. - Top - End - #21
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    Malagak looks pointedly at the man who had harassed him earlier. <<People drawn to ask these old stories, wanting to become heroes too. Sounds like a huge load of trouble to me.>>
    Last edited by Hypersmith; 2019-06-20 at 08:31 PM.
    The moon sees nothing of this. She is bald and wild.
    And the message of the yew tree is blackness - blackness and silence.

  22. - Top - End - #22
    Ettin in the Playground
     
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    "<Can't really blame people for wanting to leave their mark on history. Rudeness notwithstanding. In fact, if all goes well, I'll have my own name attached to a spell soon enough, just like that Bigby fellow. I can see it now: Grenuxa's Aura Tracking.>"

    I have no idea why the site needed words to make the post longer but here we are or something.
    Last edited by John Cribati; 2019-06-20 at 05:38 PM.

    Formerly known as "Herpestidae."
    Most of my posts are done by mobile. Expect typos.
    Quote Originally Posted by Frozen_Feet View Post
    Things don't magically stop being fun when you reach a certain age.

  23. - Top - End - #23
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    <<Hah, I can't lag behind. Have someone wrote down Malagak's tracking over rocky terrain one day. Seems magic is your path in life then? Props to you. I never had the aptitude my sister did, but I learned a little bit myself. So does this aura tracking you're working on have anything to do with the magic item you're looking for? >>
    Malagak grins easily.
    Last edited by Hypersmith; 2019-06-20 at 08:40 PM.
    The moon sees nothing of this. She is bald and wild.
    And the message of the yew tree is blackness - blackness and silence.

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    Ettin in the Playground
     
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    Grenuxa seems surprised at being caught out, and maybe slightly annoyed, but then she smirks mischievously. "<<Yes, but also no.>>"

    She offers no further explanation.

    Formerly known as "Herpestidae."
    Most of my posts are done by mobile. Expect typos.
    Quote Originally Posted by Frozen_Feet View Post
    Things don't magically stop being fun when you reach a certain age.

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    "<<Non-answers are a cop out and you know it.">> Malagak teases, but doesn't push further.
    Last edited by Hypersmith; 2019-06-21 at 09:53 PM.
    The moon sees nothing of this. She is bald and wild.
    And the message of the yew tree is blackness - blackness and silence.

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    Ettin in the Playground
     
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    "<<We met a few minutes ago, and have just now - indirectly- introduced ourselves. Your willingness to share intimate details about your life doesn't mean I'm obligated to do the same.>>

    Malagak has to use context clues to parse that last bit- Northern Orcish seems to be a far more wordy dialect than he's used to.
    Last edited by John Cribati; 2019-06-21 at 08:15 PM.

    Formerly known as "Herpestidae."
    Most of my posts are done by mobile. Expect typos.
    Quote Originally Posted by Frozen_Feet View Post
    Things don't magically stop being fun when you reach a certain age.

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    Malagak raises an eyebrow. <<I meant no offense. A joke. Maybe a dialect difference?>>
    The moon sees nothing of this. She is bald and wild.
    And the message of the yew tree is blackness - blackness and silence.

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    "<<My apologies, then. I do not wish to be hostile. But I suppose we should cut to the chase. >>

    She reaches into a pocket and pulls out a small object, which she fumbles and it skitters across the table before she very loudly slams a hand over it.

    Spoiler: The Object (DC 7 perception lmao)
    Show
    A golden, serpent-shaped brooch with a ruby set in the eye


    Blushing, she quickly slides it back into her pocket, hoping nobody saw that she didn't want to.

    "<<Ahem. Well. You ever notice that nobody really knows much about the Vipers' residential lives? There's an adequate amount of knowledge about tgeir childhoods, and a few anecdotes here and there, but they all cut off abruptly after they broke up the Wool Road slave cartel. That's because these have a moderately powerful illusion tied to them. They still appeared as themselves to people who knew them, but to everyone else, they looked just different enough to be lookalikes. Actually, there might be a bit of enchantment in there, too, now that I think about it. Point is, they give off a specific magical signature. Enough that I can tell there are four people in this very establishment who have one on their peraon: You, me, the half-elf, and... the man you were arguing with.>>

    Formerly known as "Herpestidae."
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    Quote Originally Posted by Frozen_Feet View Post
    Things don't magically stop being fun when you reach a certain age.

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    Default Re: Child Support [IC]

    It was Malagak's turn to become rather cold. At the initial sight of the brooch, he stills, then looks warily at the half elf and human, then back to Grenuxa, caution dominating his gaze. <<And what do you intend to do with that info? And the terrible coincidence that four of... us are here at once?>>
    Last edited by Hypersmith; 2019-06-24 at 02:51 PM.
    The moon sees nothing of this. She is bald and wild.
    And the message of the yew tree is blackness - blackness and silence.

  30. - Top - End - #30
    Barbarian in the Playground
     
    BardGuy

    Join Date
    Apr 2019
    Location
    Oregon
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Child Support [IC]

    Maximus headed for the door, feeling overly disappointed in his afternoon. He had come with the expectation of...something. Long travel, heavy history and lore, family lineage tied to a heroic group of adventurers all leading up to a short verbal confrontation with an Orc at a bar. It was all so anticlimactic.

    As he reached for the door handle, a loud thud caught his attention, and the shimmer of blood red ruby was visible in his peripheral vision. His head turned slightly, just enough to catch a glimpse of a serpent brooch with a ruby, striking similar to the brooch Maximus had found which belonged to his father. The symbol of the Ruby Vipers.

    His hand pulled back from the door for a moment as he collected his thoughts. His relationship with the Orc was strained, and it would likely be best to avoid the two - but the Brooch was too much to ignore. He would have to take his chances with the Orcs again.

    He took a few steps over to the two who were speaking to each other in foreign tongue not familiar to Max, despite his father's stress on multi-lingual pursuits and Max's knowledge of several other languages. Orcish, obviously, he was not proficient with.

    Excuse me, I apologize for intruding...and for our interaction earlier... He lowered his voice, keeping an eye for any prying listeners. ...but that Brooch...I know that Brooch. I must ask...how did you acquire such a piece?
    Spoiler: Current Games
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    Aldaroth - IC

    Tales of Trollskull Alley - IC
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    Child Support - IC


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