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"You don't care about 'good' and 'evil', but you were all too willing to feed the prisoner to that beast in the water," the bard points out. "And it was only when you figured out we'd try to stop you from doing so that you decided to attack. That doesn't speak well to your innocence, even if you aren't a follower of Shar."
He sighs. "Either way, though, the Purple Dragons will want to talk to you, I'm sure. Even if you're just a material witness and not a suspect."
Maesyn walks off and casts a detect magic spell, looking for magical auras in the alcove, the catamaran, on the rafter's person, and in the area of the cages. While the spell is active, he also directs it into the water to see if Mordiun's magic weapon is still there.
"Yes, make us believe, because this wouldn't be the first time I've neutered a rat."
With that, Savin, enlarged, easily pick the man up by his collar and stares him in the eyes.
"Of course, we could also tie you to a rock and leave enough rope so you so you could keep your nose above water in that river over there... with a couple of bleeding nicks, it would only be a matter of time before the other predators coming looking for something to feed on." With that he lets go of the man, letting him fall in a heap.
Turning, he walks to Mordiun's body to say a prayer for him.
"Either way, a short, pain filled, and torturous death unless you make us believe."
Lastly, when finished looking throughout the alcove, and Axara returns from the cells with Veera, Ryxikor moves to the lifeless limp body of Mordiun. He reaches down and unclasps the cloak and pulls off the dwarf's backpack, Ryx doesn't do anything with the armor, Mordiun will need it in the afterlife. He does however, search through the backpack for anything of use to possibly and hopefully save others including the over-zealous dwarf's sister.
When finished, he stands near Maesyn at the waters edge, "Anything down there?"
The river rafter laughs at Ryxikor ‘How can I show you with manacles on? This is the map I draw and give the parishioners. I have to draw a new one with each batch as they do not seem to come back.’
Ryxikor’s eyes open wide when he sees the chest. He knows he can get the key to open it but the rogue the challenge of opening locks. He searches for traps, find none and then attempt to pick the lock. The lock is tough but not good enough the resist the elf expert skills.
Inside the chest, he founds a pouch with 855 worth of coins, a gold bracelet, a noble outfit, a necklace with diamond, a high quality rapier, a strange looking arrow, a funny looking rope, an amulet, a ring and 2 MW belts potion.
The blonde man looks upset ‘Hey! Don’t steal my stuff!’
Maesyn’s silver eyes are focusing on the blue eyes man and the silver half-elf continues his pointed interrogation. The rafter replies ‘Hey, don’t blame you. The dumb dwarf is the one that woke up Tentacool. The monster was dormant. Once it is awake, it needs to feed. I was not about to sacrifice myself or the guards and none of you wanted to be the monster’s dinner. So this is why I told the guards to feed the monster. This might not be a nice thing to do but I did not want to die and I did not see any of you ready to die either. And yes, bring me to the Purple Dragons. I really want to clear out this misunderstanding.’
The conversation turns definitively for the worse when Savin picks the rafter up and repeats his castrating threat or to use him as a bait to bring in another monster. The look on the rafter’s face turn to real fear ‘Please no, I beg you. I told you everything I know. I am just a simple boat operator. I did not know anything wrong. I only worked for a cleric of Mystra. She is a good goddess right? Please let me down.’
As Savin lifts him in the air, the rafter tries to free squirms and begs even more. As Savin drops him in a heap, the blonde man crawls by Maesyn ‘Please, please protect me. I did not do anything wrong. You can still my steal my stuff if you want but don’t cut me… please… ’
Maesyn does a detect-magic spell and sees that the leather armor and spear the rafter used is indeed magical. In addition, the rapier, the arrow, the rope, the amulet and the ring found in the chest are all magical.
The half silver elf also see that the radiance of Mordiun magical axe at the bottom of the river.
Axara gives the date Veera and the woman gets upset. ‘What? Ten days? It has been 10 days already? All I remember is that big black crystal ball then being told to go down and wait and seeing the other 8 go on the boat and then it gets all blurry…. WHAT HAVE THEY DONE TO ME?’ She starts screaming in a release of repressed anger and frustration.
Axara gives her a hug to calm her down and helps her cross the bridge. Veera has difficulty walking. The priestess of Mystra asks about Meradi. Veera nods ‘Yes. I remember now. A dwarf woman. Quite friendly. I got to know her during the 3 days of boredom and starvation before the black crystal ball. She got on the boat.’
When she sees Ryxikor go after Mordiun’s personal possessions, Axara yells “No. Ryxikor, just leave it there. I will not let you steal the possession of a follower of Mystra. We will bury them with him or seel them to help restore the temple. But you are not taking them. If you do, you can forget about receiving any healing magic from me. You do not deserve it..’
As Maesyn exposes the magic items, Axara approaches the river. “I guess someone should go after Mordiun’s weapon. ’ She looks around and adds ‘I guess it will be me’
Unless someone volunteer, she will start taking of her armor.
Ryxikor just laughs at the man as he brings the newly procured items and places them with the rest of the gear the man and guards carried. "Wow, you have a lot of nice things, and you were payed how much, to be able to afford all these nice things?." the elf stands there before the shackled rafter, holding the rapier inspecting it further. Without looking up, "Well, I agree with him. I think we should just clear this place out and take him to the Purple Dragons, thell them what we've found, then we can come back here and try and follow this map." Ryx says as he nudges the rafter hard in the leg with his foot.
Ryx turns abruptly hearing the harshness in the cleric's threats, "I'm not stealing anything..." he states staring at the priestess sternly, "..I've not touched his armor, I'm just looking for things that could be useful or sold to buy muched needed gear. Who knows where the map is gonna lead us. I would hate for our party to be decimated because we failed to have the funds for one more healing wand, or because our weapons do no harm to monsters, I've seen that before." The elf tries to hold his ground, standing his ground behind half truths, hoping they may sound plausible. Then as Axara prepares to to retrieve Mordiun's weapons, Ryx, the wily elven warrior rogue rushes over to help her out of her armor. "Nice armor, by the way..." he says with a half smile, not knowing if she's still upset with him over the dwarf's gear, "Just know this priestess of Mystra, if I have a weapon that I can't hit the broad side of a tavern with, and you bury me with it, I'll haunt you til the end of days." this time his smile becomes much more substantial.
Maesyn goes to Axara when she starts yelling and puts a calming hand on her shoulder. "Dweomerkeeper Axara, Dwarves are a highly family-oriented race. They pass their prized possessions down the generations, often for many centuries. His axe, at least, ought to go to his sister. Don't you think that's what he would have wanted?"
Maesyn tries to determine if Mhair is telling the full truth yet. If so, he asks Savin to stand down on the threats.
"Lady, no need. I will go in" before Ryxikor manages to get to Axara and he ignores the baleful looks from the elf.
Quickly unbuckling his armor as he walks over to the spear the man had, he looks at Maesyn and says Where at?"
As the elf walks towards Axara, he is horrified by the sound of Savin's voice declaring he would dive after Mordiun's cursed weapons. Ryx slowly turns his head and glares at the warrior, "Hmph" is all he can think to say, then only to turn back to Axara and think of what he thought he was gonna see.
Ryxikor turns abrubtly on his heel, and head's back to the rafter, kicking him hard in the side, hoping to feel a rib or two break, "Well, no show afterall, so I'm back to keep you company." he states, smiling coldly at Mahir. The elf kneels down next to the manacled sitting rafter, with all the items Maesyn identifying as having auras about them laid out on the ground, "Yours you say? Interesting, how you keep them locked, and hidden away instead of using them." Ryx looks at the rope coiled on the ground, as Savin prepares to dive into the water, "Murderer, murderer of an unarmed dwarf." Ryx mumbles loud enough for Mahir to hear, "You realize the more you cooperate, the chances on you remaining unharmed are better." Ryx tells the rafter as Savin dives into the murky water, "I wonder what the Purple Dragons will think when I tell them Mordiun's weapons were at the bottom of the water and unarmed when you crushed his skull. I wonder how my friend, and you, will fare when he returns to the surface with said weapons." Ryx grins widely, "Now, tell me about your items here, like,where you got them and what they do." he asks of all items, while holding the ring in one hand and the amulet in the other.
Last edited by puffmagicdragon : 09-15-2012 at 06:25 PM.
As Axara starts taking of her armor, Ryxikor’s interest in helping the cleric suddenly increases. He compliments her on her armor, wondering what is under it. Before he can finds out, the enlarged Savin proposes to go retrieve the weapons.
Axara smiles back and put back her armor. “Thank you, Savin. It is a knightly thing to do.’ She does a little courtesy bow and the disappointment on Ryxikor’s face is obvious. Axara looks at him and says ‘Listen, elf, you would not have been the first nor the last to see me and it always cost something. I am sure Wheloon has some place where you can prove you are not a lady elf …..’
Maesyn mentions to Axara the dwarven tradition of passing over prized possession. She thinks for a second before saying ‘You are right Maesyn. We will keep the axe for Medina if we can find her. The rest gets buried with him. He did not die that we could loot his possessions like a bunch of vulture.’
Savin ready to jump in the water asks Maesyn where the axe it. The bard points to the faint shining spot in the water.
Ryxikor is quite intrigued how a river rafter would have so many magical possessions. He threaten him and the blonde man shakes in head in disgust. ‘Yes, I admit. I have an obsession with magical things. I took them from some parishioners who did not seem to care about them anymore. I know it is not right. I am ashamed of it. As soon as they come back, I will return them their possessions.’
Veera looks at the blue eyed man ‘Where is my stuff, thief?’
The rafter replies ‘Fembrys and Shan Thar took them from you. They said you donated them to the temple for sale to cover the cost of running the temple of Mystra.
Veera looks at him with suspicion ‘I do not recall that. Heck, I remember very little other than the black crystal , going down here and waking up in that cell.’
Maesyn senses that the rafter was really just involved with bringing the petitioners out of the temple but he cannot tell if he knew or not of the other things happening inside the fake temple.
Satisfied that is all the information they will get from this individual, Ryxikor hops up and moves to the rafter's bed, taking the sheets, the rogue returns and wraps the body of the dwarf in it, getting ready to travel back to Wheloon. Ryx also packs all the gear from the rafter and the guards, ready to return to Wheloon, let Tunaster and the Purple Dragons what we know, sell the goods and prepare to travel and follow the map to where it takes us.
When everyone else is ready, Ryx asks, "What do we do with the bodies we found, do we take any back to town with us, or leave it all to the Purple Dragons?" he hesitates momentarily, remembering some names of common folk of Wheloon were mentioned, "And if any of you were searching for certain individuals, for their loved ones, you should let them know of thier fate."
Maesyn gently reminds Axara that they -- or the Purple Dragons -- might need the keyring that Mordiun carried, with all the temple keys on it. "It seems a shame for his potions to go to waste," he adds. "But you are the expert in sacred ritual, I suppose."
He ponders the former prisoner, Veera. "The one thing that still confuses me -- assuming the gentleman here is speaking the full truth -- is why Veera alone was left in this dank cell while the other victims of the Starry Gnosis were sent downriver. You say, m'lady, that you are a sailor? As crewman, or captain? What is the name of your ship? Apologies for the questions, but anything you can tell us might provide a vital clue."
Savin jumps into the murky water and dives, well basically lets himself fall to the bottom and squat to retrieve Mordiun’s weapons.
When he comes out, Axara goes give him a big hug (basically hugging his leg) saying ‘Thank you Big Man!’.
Ryxikor has everything packed and is ready to go back to Wheloon. He makes an allusion to the fact that some people where sent here on more than one mission.
Maesyn tries to explain the Axara about burying goods is usually a waste or motivate tomb robbers. Axara looks at him pensively before saying ‘OK. His armor and his weapon, other than the magical axe are buried with him. The axe and the gold will go to his sister or his relatives or the church. The book on Mystra gets buried with him. The rest can be sold and the gold given to his sister. I will bury him or make a cairn outside the entrance of the temple. We needs to close this temple until some high powered cleric can come and cleanse it from the stench of Shar. We also need to relocate the drunk.’
After saying that she goes pick up the body and starts carrying it back.
Veera looks at Maesyn ‘The boat can only carry 8 passengers plus the rafter. We were 9, actually 12 but 3 of them did not make it. Nice guys some somehow, Fembrys kept them back up. I guess I was lucky I was the 9th passenger. My ship is called the Wicked Maiden. I am her captain and I hope my crew is still waiting for me. I told them I would be gone for 3 days and it has been close to two weeks.
She starts waling back with difficulty before turning toward the blonde man ‘You did not think it was strange that the parishioners were all acting like sheep? ’
The blue eyes guy replies ‘Lady, acting like brain dead ship is what religious people do ….. ’
"So, what is our next move? I'm thinking that we chain this guy to the boat and have him lead us to where he was dropping of the passengers. Or, we can tie him up and leave him in that cell until we stumble around and try to figure out where he took them, and he can hope we can succeed."
He stands, shaking the water off of him, and puts his armor and gear back on.
The rafter looks at Savin with fear in his eyes 'I left them when I put the X on the map. After that they do their pilgrimage on their own following my map. I will be more than happy to bring you there with the boat but I cannot be chained to operate it.'
Once Savin has dried off, re-armored, and is ready, Ryxikor reaches around the rafter and grabs the manacles, lifting them up, causing the man to stand. As the group prepares to leave the underground dock, Ryx walks behind the rafter, organripper drawn, just in case he tries anything. "Axara, maybe Savin would help carry the corpse."
Following the others, Ryx does anything he can to help close the temple, "But we are coming back, correct? I figured we let authorities know of our findings, sell off some of this gear and prepare to follow that map." The elf looks at the others, trying to read their expressions.
"Maybe we could manage the raft on our own." Ryxikor states, throwing out suggestions, "We could always hire Veera to guide us over and let her have the catamaran since she lost everything she has, maybe that, or the coin from selling it, would help her get back to her ship and crew."
Ryx hesitates momentarily, "If we're to follow that map, we don't know when we'll be able to re-equip, I'd like to be more prepared."
Axara nods at Ryxikor. 'Any help would be welcome, even from a weakly looking girlish elf.' as she gives him a naughty wink.
'I am not going ANYWHERE until Mordiun is properly buried in the name of Mystra and I contact Tunaster or his superiors. The temple must be reclaimed and cleaned of its evil.'
She is leaving the down slowly carrying Mordiun.
Veera shakes her head. 'Are you joking? I have a schooner waiting for me and you want me to captain that barge? My crew is waiting unless Wheloon has run out of beer and rum and the whores can't walk.'
She follows Axara, her legs slowly getting used to bigger steps.
Bardic Knowledge check on the ship Wicked Maiden: (1d20+9)
"We don't need to come back, though I doubt the Purple Dragons would let us anyway," Maesyn points out. "The map clearly shows the Wyvernflow and surrounding roads; I don't see any reason we need to take a boat to get there."
"I'm sure his sister will appreciate our consideration," Maesyn says to Axara. "I do have to ask, however... is there an option to return Mordiun to life? We'd already thought him dead once before, and I understand that powerful clerics can petition their deities to return life to those who die young."
Maesyn recognized the name of Wicked Maiden. It is merchant ship known for its unruly crew. Captain has always been a woman.
Maesyn points that the group has all the info their need to go after the petitioners.
He brings up to Axara the possibility to resurrect Mordiun.
The priestess replies 'This kind of powerful magic is way beyond my capabilities. It can be done if the God or Goddess judges the deceased deserving of a new chance. Mordiun got it already once. We could always petition a cleric to attempt to do it but it will be expensive and we will pay it even if the resurection fails. You can always run it by one of my superiors once I contact them.'
Hearing Veera's comments, then remember some of Axara's comments, Ryx tries to help with the burial of Mordiun more, "Yes, we need to hurry, and get Veera back to her crew." he says with a mischevious grin.
Savin nods to Ryxikor at his idea to carry Mordiun.
As the dialogue plays out Savin says "Although he may not have been a follower of Mystra for long, he was in the and should be buried with other followers. But, we can't forget his sister and others who were taken for purposes unknown."
Axara thanks Savin for his help which makes carrying Mordin's body a much easier task.
'I agree that we should find out what happened to these poor Mystra petitioners tricked by the Sharrans. But they left 10 days ago according to Veera so they probably are where they were supposed to go. Burying Mordiun won't make much of a difference to them and means the world to me.'
Axara follows, carrying Mordiun's body with the help of a now normal sized Savin (to fit through the long corridor on the way to the failed shadow gate room) and retracing the group exploration trail.
The rafter follows with Ryxikor right behind to ensure there is no foul play.
Maesyn closes the group marching order.
They pass the failed gate room and Arthas' quarter. Axara spits on the symbol of Shar image, for good measure. They pass the torture room, the hallway and go up to inner temple. The same silence which now englobes the fake temple surrounds them.
They go through the middle temple and get out into the courtyard, opening and closing the door, using the set of keys that Mordiun collected.
Kevrin is snoring in his quarter, oblivious to what happened.
They open the temple door and the crowd has dispersed.
Axara finds a nice spot near the entrance and puts Mordiun's body on the group and starts gathering stone to build a make shift cairn for the fallen dwarf.
Once the cairn is finished, Axara recites the standard rites for a Mystran funeral. Then she adds 'Farewell valiant dwarf. Mystra might not have been your first calling but I am sure she is welcoming you in her realm with open arms. You were as courageous as you were unlucky. I am so sorry I could not save you. I swear that we will find out what happened to your sister. I pray to Mystra that she is still alive. I will miss you, my dwarf friend.'
After that, she looks for a piece of wood and using a dagger, write the word 'Peach'. She put the sign on top of the cairn.
Suddenly, a group of two dozen soldiers appears. They are lead by an officer on a horse. The soldiers are well equipped and seem experienced. The officer says. 'Drop your weapons. By the power given to me by Lord Redbeard and as an officer of the Purple Dragons representing Constal Maximus Tholl, I put you under arrest for attacking the Temple of Mystra. Resistance will be futile. Surrender all your possessions.'
In an impressive display of discpline and coordination, all the Purple Dragons pull out their swords and the same time and get into fighting position.
The true blooded elf lets out a long deep sigh, sheaths organripper and unbuckles his weapons belt, I knew this was too easy, arrested again, he thinks to himself as he drops his weapons to the ground at his feet.
"It's not what you think." Ryx says to the officer, trying not to offend him, Ryx doesn't feel like spending the night in jail.
"Now you know why I wanted to approach the Purple Dragons earlier this morning," Maesyn comments wryly. "Dweomerkeeper Axara, we may need assistance from your superiors, if we can get word to them."
He is tired of fighting and hopeful that the Purple Dragons will look beyond the obvious. He does as ordered.
"Officers, this woman was being held as a prisoner in the temple's dungeon. She is the captain of the Wicked Maiden and should be returned to her ship, as she's done nothing wrong and played no role in our investigation here."
Savin stands for a moment, ready to rebuff these Purple Dragons when he sees the others give in.
Partially in disgust, he lets his hanging chain drop to the ground.
"This true priestess of Mystra will vouch for our conduct. We prevail ourselves upon you to seek the true justice in this situation and contact official Mystran leaders, not of this city, to sort out what is going on, as opposed to trusting the words of newcomers or those who would seem to be your allies."
While weaponless, he holds his head in a defiant manner, meeting this challenge in a manner Tempus would approve.
The rafter piggies back of Maesyn's comments 'Hey. I am a captain too of a small boat. I should be retur....' He stops talking given the look on the officer's face.
The officer dismisses the group complaints. 'We will what happens to all of you after we hear your story.'
Axara tries to intervene 'I am a cleric of Mystra and what you have here is not a temple ...'
"ENOUGH!" yells the officer. There will be time for you to tell your story.
The officer confiscate the set of keys and enter the temple with half of the Purple Dragons present while the rest pick the weapons and start moving the group back to Wheloon.
They bring them to a jail where they have to go back in their civilian clothes. Each group member is put into a single cell with a smelly straw mattress and a hole in a corner to pass one's water and excrete.
The only source of light is a small barred window through the door. After a few hour, a bowl of mystery gruel is passed through a sliding small opening in the door.
Later a guard comes back and requests that you pass back the bowl.
The sun goes down and nothing happens.
The only companionship any of the group members have are the cockroaches and the rats that call the cells home.
The night goes by without any intervention and the morning arrives. No food is delivered. At around 10 AM, the door of each cell opens and armed Purple Dragons are standing there. They lead you to a meeting room where two are standing behind a long table.
One is older and has red hair and a red beard. He has the unmistakable look of nobility. The other one is much younger and clean shave. It is clear that he is a military man. They do not offer the group member to sit.
The young man says 'I am Constal Maximus Tholl. All 4 of you are together because the other two group members indicated that you were together. We still have the woman called Veera and the man called Mhair in custody. What exactly is your story and what can you tell me about the Temple of Mystra?'
The older man shakes his head in anger and disgust.
"Lord Redbeard, I presume?" Maesyn says, addressing the older man -- and ensuring his companions know to be on their best behavior. "If you are here, considering your busy schedule, then it's clear you understand the importance of what occurred over the last two days."
He begins by way of explanation, "I am Maesyn Silverhair. Several days ago, the Cali****e and I, and two others, were recruited by a Cleric of Mystra to look into strange occurrences at the Temple of Mystra. His name is Tunaster Dranik, and I believe he came to the Purple Dragons with his concerns before taking matters into his own hands.
"We investigated and confirmed that things were not as they seemed. The clerics of the temple were secretive and acted suspiciously, even admitting that they had fired upon Tunaster when he had asked to see Lady Arthas.
"A few of our number agreed to undertake a ritual promoted by the clerics, called 'Mystra's Sacred Trust'. After three days and of fasting, they were quite fatigued and thus vulnerable to magical assault. It was then that they were invited into the inner sanctum, to gaze upon an artifact called the Starry Gnosis. It had the effect of imposing a magical compulsion upon its victims, securing them to the purposes of the wielder, in this case the man known as 'Starweaver Fembrys'. Savin here can elaborate on the Gnosis, as he was the most severely effected.
"Upon realizing our compatriots were under magical attack, I and another moved in to the temple, being careful not to cause any harm to the guards. We felt it was necessary at the time in order to stop whatever attack was occurring. Although we did our utmost to prevent bloodshed, Fembrys and his friend Shan Thar were unrelenting and we eventually had to use force to subdue them and prevent their attack.
"Cognizant of how this would appear to later investigators such as yourselves, we investigated further, attempting to find more concrete evidence that would illustrate the sinister dealings occurring at the temple.
"We did find a number of such items. First, the Starry Gnosis itself, which you no doubt found locked inside the altar in the inner sanctum. I myself verified that it is a fairly powerful magical artifact of enchantment. Second, you will find amongst our possessions two Disks, which appear to be holy symbols of Shar disguised as blank disks; these were held by Fembrys and Lady Arthas, and we suspect Shan Thar possessed one as well -- it would be buried with him on the temple grounds.
"Third, there is the grisly trophy room that served as Fembrys' quarters, with five heads of innocent Wheloonian citizens mounted on his wall. I should think that speaks for itself. I believe we also had documentation somewhere that the trophies belonged to Fembrys.
"Fourth, there is the torture chamber in the dungeon, across from Lady Arthas' quarters, which again speaks to itself. If nothing else, that alone proves that this was no Temple of Mystra, I should think.
"Fifth, we have a letter begun by Lady Arthas but never completed, which documents Tunaster's visit to the temple and her desire to have him killed before he could summon help -- which of course he did, wisely."
The bard takes a deep breath, having recited the facts as he knows them with as much clarity and earnestness as possible.
Diplomacy check: (1d20+14)
"I understand that this tale is very hard to believe, but I am also certain that the evidence you've encountered at the Temple, as well as the testimony of the apprentice Kevrin -- and any former temple guards you may have found in the city -- will comport completely with what I have detailed."
Ryxikor stands quietly, letting the silver tongued bard speak for the group, the elf just nods in agreement from time to time, but understands if he opens his mouth, they could wind up back behind bars.