Legends of the Fail

Between Adventures
More downtime, and a new face joins the party.

When last we left, the group had limped back into town to lick their wounds and bury their dead. They crashed at Darius and Tania’s place to divvy up the goods. They are left with nothing on their plates for immediate critical attention, but there are still those two leads of the Thing in the Fields and the Haunted Tower.

Arthur Grevane chooses to spend his potion brewing time by demonstrating it to others, complete with a stuffy, dry lecture on chemistry. Good luck understanding a word of it!

Darius tries to train to be more procient and dodging and swordplay as the paladin’s death showed that it only takes one mistake to die

So two days pass mostly without problem. Sin goes back to her run down farmhouse. What is the plan for coming back together? what do they intend to do?"

On the first day, whilst Arthur is heading out on the market to buy supplies for potion making, something shining on the ground catches his eye. Something also happens to Tania, but since she’s NOT HERE then I can’t do anything

Arthur Grevane stops and takes a look at the shining thing. Is it pick-upable?

It is, though it’s a little dirty. It looks like some sort of small colored stone.

Arthur Grevane picks it right up, tosses it and catches it, twirls it between his fingers… and then finally takes a look at it. “Now let’s see, here… what would you be?”

It is a cut sapphire, likely fallen out of someone’s pouch. It must be worth somewhere close to 500 gp. The second day passes without events, for anyone. What arthur does with the sapphire is up to him.

Arthur Grevane brings it to the others, actually. “It seems somebody has dropped a sapphire…”

Kierdan Summers gives Arthur a rolling shrug as he gives his bronze breastplate a tug. “Way I see it, ya got two options: sell it, or post a notice an’ hope that whoever dropped it is prestigious enough ta make up the diff’rence between what it’s worth and what they give ya. Money’s wonderful, but favors’re priceless.”

Now, a particularly crafty person would post “FOUND SAPPHIREINQUIRE WITHIN” signs, and rig the entrance with a pit trap. But no, he’s not going to do that.

Sin “Posting that you found some random gemstone is going to have a line of beggers along the block in one direction, and a line of thieves around the block in the other.”

Arthur, “We do need to be careful of where we sell it, though. I fear the original owner may protest.”

Kierdan, “If nothin’ else, ‘s a good way ta ingratiate yourself with the watch, by bringin’ all the thieves to the yard and trappin’ ’em.”

Sin “They’ll just look for a reason to throw me into the clink again.”

Darius, “Well you found it , Umm under the adventurer law I think its yours..Im not sure”

Kierdan, “Like I’d let ’em.”

“None of us will allow you to be arrested over this,” Arthur says to Sin. “At all.”

Sin smiles “Glad to know you lot have my back.”

Kierdan, “I told ya, Sindrathiir. I’ll ride with ya, ya got my respect. All o’you lot do.” That last bit comes slightly hastily.

Arthur, “Well, of course. Anyway, back to the issue of the gemstone. It is likely we should sell it, but in a way that meakes it clear we are not fencing it. Or we could trap it with explosives and leave it in the town square.”

Kierdan, “Let’s try the one that won’t get us thrown in the stockade. Why don’t we just keep it ta barter with?”

Sin “We could just keep it, start so… yeah.”

Kierdan, “ ’s a good idea, Sin, start a party fund.”

“Certainly not a bad idea.” More sleight of hand with the sapphire while everybody talks. “In fact, the most virtuous and logical idea came from a lady called Sin. How ironic… if we still had a paladin with us, unfortunately.”

Kierdan, “Hey, ‘er name’s Sindrathiir. ‘s like callin’ you Art.”

“Some people do, actually.” Arthur takes off his glasses to wipe them clean. “And I placed first in the Alchemy Academy’s Pictionary tournament, thank you very much.”

Kierdan, “I’m afraid to ask what a Pictionary is.”

Sin “Probably some sort of crazy college game.”

Darius scratches his head in confusion

Arthur, “You have to guess what the other person is thinking based on the quality of their artwork.”

Kierdan Summers glances over to Darius. “Oi, ya wanna few tips? I prefer ta fight sword ‘n’ board… or hammer ‘n’ board as the case may be… but I still trained with a greatsword under my first knight.”

Darius looks over to Kierdan with a quizzical expression, “S-Sure, I haven’t had as much time because of my… Magic training.. I would like…the help”

Kierdan Summers walks over to the summoner, standing a few feet away from him; just far enough to backspring away from a bad backswing, as a matter of fact. “OK, show me what’cha got.”

Sin “So what do we plan on doing from here?”

Kierdan, “Well, I dunno if Tania’d go fer it, but ‘tween you all, that door that th’ skeletons were guardin’ looked pretty ornate. Ya don’t make a door like that ta put in front of the privies.”

Arthur Grevane clears his throat! “Well,” he says, “We have a couple of leads out in the wild wilderness, or perhaps a tower that may or may not be haunted.”

Sin “I don’t think going back to the noble and saying ‘hey, you’ve got a dungeon under your house that we didn’t tell you about, can we explore it’ will go over well..”

Arthur, “We could always make something up, you know. ‘We believe that there may be more monsters.’”

Kierdan, “Or bribe th’ butler.”

Arthur, “Or equip the butler.”

Darius swings while Kierdan is distracted.

Kierdan Summers gives Darius a glance as he swings. “Pull yer arms in a little tighter. Ya don’t need ta make a big sweepin’ motion, ye’re not threshin’ wheat. Swing enough ta hit the opponent and follow through, then tuck it back in fer the next swing.”

Sin chuckles softly “Well, if you honestly think something like that would work…”

Arthur, “now, I must ask a very important question, my friends and associates. Believe me, this one will determine your futures…”

Sin “No, I don’t want to explode.”

Kierdan, “D’I expect th’ butler ta be happy ta see us? Hells no. D’I expect him ta not mind makin’ a little scratch on th’ side? That’s not so certain.”

Arthur, “Not at all, not at all! But you see, I do need to know – what sort of flavor extracts would you like in the healing potions? Vanilla? Cherry? Mint? Magnesium chalk?”

Darius nods trying to focus on both conversations at once

Sin “Whatever’s cheapest.”

Darius takes Kierdan’ words to consideration and at this time tryies to strike the mid section with a diagonal top slash

Kierdan, “Mint, I’d say, if it doesn’t make a diff’rence in cost. Well, if th’ tunnels under th’ mansion are a bust, we can go take a look at th’ tower.”

Sin “I’ll go with whatever you guys decide on, but we may want to consider comissioning a healer. I mean the paladin was the main one keeping people from bleeding to death before the potions were distributed.”

Kierdan, “Sounds like a job for th’ sapphire.”

Sin “Should we try to find someone then?”

Arthur, “I think so. How shall we hold this, do you think? Tryouts? A sign? Mugging?”

Sin “Post some interest at the Weary Wyvern.”

Kierdan Summers gives Arthur a nod. “Do it.”

Sin “I think we’ll have him continue to make potions, how about you or Darius do it?”

Kierdan, “Right, I’ll do it, then.”

Darius, “Ok.”

Kierdan posts the following: “Mercenary unit seeking additional member, must have healing ability, competitive pay, inquire within." Then he’ll get a room at the Wyvern for a day or two and wait.

So while Arthur brews potions, people begin to respond to that notice. Ruxly will also see it, if she has any interest.

Ruxly will be amongst the people who respond to the notice and inquire about it, mostly because its one of the more exciting things she has seen recently. Also it’s hard getting a competitive pay gig around here.

It’s her and nineteen others. How does Kierdan want to handle sorting them? Does he verify if they have magical healing abilities? And what sorts of pay is he offering?

Yes, he verifies that they have magic, and he offers an equal share in the take of whatever jobs that they do.

Only like four people have magical healing, including Ruxly. The original postion attracted every yokel with a sharp stick and a bandage. It takes around an hour to get them narrowed down to those. Does he want to set any other sort of requirements?

I can’t think of any other reasonable requirements.

Ruxly can go ahead and make her case any time.

Ruxly is a young human girl in her teens. She has long light blonde hair—almost to the point to where it is white. Her eyes are aqua-colored and she keeps a mischievous grin on her face. A tan jacket with a white fur collar is worn over top of a black undershirt. Ruxly ’s lower half consists of a black skirt and brown furred boots. A spell component pouch is worn on her belt alongside a dagger. On her back she carries a pack and a light crossbow. A red fox kit follows along and sometimes effortlessly climbs up Ruxly and into her pack to hide. She stares Kierdan in the eyes, then points a thumb at the others. “These other jokers are a bunch of wankers, I can heal each member of your crew once without calling upon my spells.”

Kierdan Summers cracks a grin at that. “What kinda spells ya got, then?”

“Besides healing ones? Oh, you know. The usual. Sleep, charm, enfeeble rays. I’ve studied spellcrafting and detecting magic. I can give people a mean look too.” Ruxly rattles off that list, then the fox familiar near her feet yips in agreement.

Kierdan Summers nods, glancing over the fox before he glances over the kit. “What’dja say yer name was, sweets?”

“Ruxly. I don’t have a family name to go with that.”

“Ruxly, all right. Ye’re th’ only one ‘ere who brings more ta th’ table than healin’. Put out yer ’and.” Kierdan Summers extends his hand to the girl.

Ruxly raises her brow at the man’s extended hand, then after a few seconds delay, she puts out her own hand to presumably shake his. “Thanks. Lets hope we make some decent money.”

Kierdan Summers takes her hand, giving it a firm shake. “S’what I’m about. C’mon, I’ll introduce ya to th’ team.”

She gestures to the door, then picks up her familiar. “Lead on.”

Kierdan Summers nods, leading the girl outside to grab Setanta’s reins before he walks with her to the farmhouse. “Ya don’t have a problem with horses, right?”

The healing potions are almost done… and fizzing and frothing everywhere, as potions are wont to do. SMOKE AND STEAM!

“I like the idea of horses more than I actually like horses. But I don’t have a problem with them, no. Just don’t ask me to handle one on my own.” Ruxly gives that weird answer while she follows Kierdan.

One of the benefits of doing alchemy and group meetings at the farmhouse is that they don’t get many visitors. Another is that if arthur accidentally sends the place up, they won’t be liable for damages for an entire neighborhood.

Kierdan, “That good enough fer you, Setanta? The horse lets out a small snort.”

Ruxly, “I hope that means ‘yes’ in horse.”

Kierdan Summers nods as they walk toward the farmhouse.

Kierdan Summers calls out as they reach the farmhouse. “Hey, Arthur! Found someone!”

“Have you, now?” Arthur calls out from within the Laboratory.

Sin peers out of the window, then lowers her crossbow.

Ruxly ends up plopping her fox-kit familiar into her backpack when she tires of carrying it. “You all a paranoid bunch, living out here?” She asks Kierdan.

“It’s handy to have a spot outside of town ta meet up at. Arthur’s a bit… eccentric.” Kierdan Summers motions toward the door to the farmhouse, leading Ruxly inside. “Besides, the rent’s way more competitive out ’ere.”

Ruxly hopes Arthur is the ‘good’ type of eccentric. She’ll enter with Kierdan’s guidance. “Let me guess. Rent’s free for this building.”

Sindrathiir looks Ruxly over as they enter. The dark elf frowns “So is this who we’ve got?”

Kierdan Summers nods to Sin. “Yeah, she was th’ only one who brought more to th’ table than healin’. Ruxly, that’s Sindrathiir, our archer.”

“A drow? How exotic. Nice to meet you.”

Sindrathiir nods to Ruxly “Archer and problem solver. We got Arthur there, our alchemist, and a couple summoners from the Blue Tower. Darius and Tania.”

Darius nods.

Ruxly looks at Arthur. This group must be rich if he wears a top hat. She nods to each of them. “Hello. What kind of… ‘jobs’ do you all do?”

“I… am a Master Alchemist!” Arthur declares. “Dissecting and studying the tgrue nature of the very Building Blocks of the UNIVERSE!”

Kierdan, “So far, we’ve been doin’ work ‘round town. We brought in a group of bandits an’ investigated some noises in a basement in th’ good part of town. Been talkin’ bout goin’ back, or having a look at a haunted tower.”

Ruxly looks over Arthur from top to bottom before answering: “I dabble a little in alchemy.” She then nods to Kierdan. “Alright. My vote is going to… whichever will get us the most cash.”

Darius, “I do like cash”

Kierdan, “I’m fond o’ gettin’ paid, too. The tower is said ta have valuables in it, but tha’s only a rumor. We saw a hellaciously fancy door in the tunnels underneath the basement, but we still gotta get back in there.”

Arthur, “Ah, good! Wonderful! Perhaps we can compare notes, then….”

“Anytime, Arthur.” Ruxly won’t share that she’s probably a beginner in comparsion. “Well, I’m the new girl, so I’ll default to your choice on the location…”

Kierdan, “All righ’, so anybody got a better idea than tryin’ ta bribe th’ butler ta get back into that basement?”

Arthur, “Again, I believe we could express concerns that he has other dangers in his basement.”

Kierdan, “So ya wanna admit that we didn’t clean it up th’ first time? Somehow, I doubt that th’ lord o’ th’ house will be thrilled ta hear that.”

“If you’ve already been there, why not just tell them you’re doing a free check-up to make sure the place is monster-free still? Say its a part of your ‘customer service’.” Ruxly does air-quotes for that.

Arthur, “A fantastic idea!”

Kierdan Summers cracks a small grin. “Ye’re already earnin’ yer keep, Ruxly. All right, anybody got any objections?”

Sin “I still think this is a bad idea, but so long as you lot do the talking, I guess we can try.”

Kierdan, “If we don’t get in, worst case, we waste ten minutes on th’ way to the tower.”

Darius, “That, Sounds smart…Like something tania would say”

Kierdan, “Speakin’ of, where is Tania, anyway?”

Sin “Well, closer to an hour.”

Ruxly bows her head slightly when Kierdan pays her the compliment. She had no idea how successful this would be, given she wasn’t really a people-person, but she figured Kierdan would be the one doing the ‘selling’ of the idea anyway.

Kierdan, “I’m not th’ leader of anythin’ or anyone. Anybody has a problem with this, has a better idea, put it out there.”

Darius, “I am not sure, I think I have… seen her do stuff”

So, with the party intent on heading to the noble’s house for roudn two of investigations, we can stop here and hope that Tania can join us next week.

View
Into the Basement
In which some new school players learn some old school lessons

A week late posting this, I know, but better late than never. Some of this session was spent discussing Arthur’s previously overlooked ability to brew potion, and figuring out a retcon to refund some of the money spent on cure light wounds potions. I allowed this this time because Arthur’s player was dealing with something irl and was non communicative the previous session.

When last we left, the party had been commissioned by Atelius to venture into the basement beneath the manor, and discover what was making such unearthly noises to frighten the servants. They have entered a large chamber, with archways leading from the walls to a central support pillar. The basement is just shy of 60 feet across on each side, and the opposing side is shrouded in darkness. There’s torches on the wall near the entrance, but otherwise it’s dark. Does anyone light up their own light source?

The floors here are well worn stone flags, the walls are of similar, albeit tighter and smaller stone construction. Every five feet, a single column is set into the wall to serve as a brace. The ceiling is smaller brick, heavily mortared. The archways themselves are perhaps a foot and a half thick, the separators taper from five foot near the walls to six inches near the cieling, and are braced with small, granite stones.

Ruke, “Does anyone have a lantern or a torch, or should I light up one of these sunrod things the Temple gave me?”

Sindrathiir “Silly, night blind humans…”

Arthur will of course hand everyone their potions. “Candy, I say! Candy for everybody!”

After some discussion, it was determined that Tania had the latnern, and would carry it.

With his sword drawn, Ruke starts this way to explore.

Tania holds the flickering lantern that the butler handed her, exposing a little more of the darkened cellar. Note: there are stacks of crates and bags, and racks of fine wine that are not visible on the map. Ruke’s footsteps echo along the stone floors as he advances into the room, moving toward the shadowy area illuminated by the light sources visible. Does anyone else do anything?

Kierdan Summers advances along with Ruke, shield and warhammer at the ready.

Sindrathiir advances with Ruke, her crossbow drawn. She holds up a hand. “Hold… I hear something ahead.” and indeed there’s a faint clicking and scraping from before the group.

Arthur Grevane walks with everybody. “I could probably infuse the healing potion into hard candy, come to think of it.”

Ruke halts. “Which direction?”

Darius wields Grimoire hesistently

Sindrathiir points to a far corner of the room. As Tania advances, the edge of her lantern’s flickering light reveals something large upon the ceiling. It resembles some cross between a crab and a spider, with a slick black carapace, long legs, and a pair of claws. It dangles upside down from the ceiling, fully seven feet in length. It crouches in a crumbling hole in the wall. The floor outside the hole is somewhat cracked, and the floor, ceiling, and walls of the niche it hides in are covered with a sticky white filament. The niche itself is rough stone and earth, unworked ground, while broken stones are scattered about the floor, resembling the walls of the rest of the cellar. Notably there’s not enough of them to account for a hole of that size.

Tania points up to the creature before hiding behind the nice armored gentlemen.

Keirdan scowls as the creature shuffles back into its hidey-hole. “Looks like we found our nasty… must have burrowed in from another underground.”

“I see.” Arthur sees it from a distance, and begins to lower his new, shiny crossbow. Engraved upon this weapon is, “THE WIDOWMAKERUNLESS YOU ARE A MAN, THEN THE WIDOWERMAKER, UNLESS YOUA RE UNMARRIED, THEN IT DECREASES THE SURPLUS POPULATION.”

Ruke nods to Arthur and Sin, waiting for them to shoot it. He readies himself, just incase it decides to charge them or something.

Sindrathiir nods “Definitely from underground… I remember those things from my youth. Be careful, they can fire strands of sticky white stuff.”

Darius, “Sticky..White stuff?”

Ruke, “Like…webbing?”

Arthur Grevane looks about to say something, but he wisely holds his tongue.

Darius begins summoning his angelic aspect Valyanna

Sindrathiir “Like strands of webbing yeah. They call them cave fishers. My grandmother knew a guy that was killed by a pack of them.”

Kierdan Summers gives his warhammer a glance. Fat lot of good that’ll do against being webbed up, he thinks to himself with a small shake of the head. “Watch yourselves. We dunno how many of ’em there are.”

Ruke, “We’ll use caution. Try shooting it from here.”

Sindrathiir nods and lifts her crossbow. Initiative rolls please. It has cover from where arthur is. He may want to move so he doesn’t have to shoot around the column in the middle.

Darius seems to be concetrating on the bond

Sadly it’s beyond Sin’s sneak attack range but she fires anyway. Her crossbow bolt skitters off of the cieling.

Tania uses her move action to give Sin a potion just in case before firing on the creature with her crossbow

The creature flinches and squeals as Tania’s bolt follows Sin’s, but much more accurately, biting deeply into its side.

Kierdan Summers slips around to the other side of the righteous paladin, to give Arthur a better view of the crab-spider to shoot it.

“Let’s see now… Ah-ha! Why, there it is!” Arthur levels his crossbow, aims, and fires!

His crossbow bolt lodges between two stones in the broken cieling.

Tania giggles at the actions of her team mates

Darius scratches his head being told not to charge in he goes with what Tania would probably call protection and casts Shield on himself, “Valyanna, Make sure it doesnt get anyone”

Ruke takes a few steps forward, watching cautiously.

Sindrathiir loads her crossbow again, then lifts it, taking aim. She fires. And she only hits it because it’s still flat footed. Her crossbow bolt sinks in to join Tania’s. Then it’s Tania’s turn.

Tania reloads and fires again from her position

This time, Tania’s crossbow slams into the wall behind the creature. Kierdan!

Tania, “Dammit! fast little bastard”

Kierdan Summers considers holding back for about two seconds before he glances to Ruke, then to Sin. “Be right back,” he mutters before he hefts his shield and hammer and surges forward, intent on cracking the thing open like a lobster dinner.

As he nears the creature, the ground shifts beneath him, as if the stones are loose. He gets there alright though. And sadly, Kierdan’s hammer catches little but air, not even coming close to impacting the thing’s shell.

Kierdan Summers wobbles as the ground shifts beneath him, snarling to the group, “Stay back!”

The cave fisher reaches down and clacks its claws at Kierdan ineffectually, chirrupping in a high pitched tone.

Ruke, “Is the ground unstable up there?” Captain Obvious asks Kierdan.

" So… No … Dont go in?" Darius seems confused

Kierdan, “Not unless you can fly.”

Tania, “There might be more under us! If it is some kind of tunneling bug”

“Well.” Arthur says, reloading his crossbow and trying to see if he still has a clear shot at the thing instead of a clear shot at Kierdan’s head.

Arthur’s crossbow bolt bites deeply into the cave fisher, nearly dislodging it from the cieling. It holds on still though. It’s black ichor drips onto the floor below, seeping down through cracks in the stone to disappear… somewhere.

Darius tilts his head to the side and slowly puts down Grimoire to take out a sling and then a bullet to load it ending his turn. “Val, Follow Kierdan’s order I guess”

Ruke advances, but not enough to put him in danger of the floor.

It’s hard to tell where the unstable floor begins and ends due to the debris laying around, and the filaments winding back and forth over the cracked stone.

Sindrathiir loads her crossbow, then aims it at the cave fisher. She fires again.

Her crossbow bolt sinks into the beast’s body, and it falls to the floor. As it hits, an area begins to crack and tumble down. The floor gives way under Kierdan and he tumbles in, crashing down into a dark, deep tunnel below. He takes 10 points of falling damage, and is in the pitch black.

Kierdan Summers drops down without a word, letting out a muffled “oof” of pain as he hits bottom and collapses.

Kierdan, you are now on the tunnels map, but it’s DARK down there… and you’re probably unconscious, so.

Arthur, “Well, that was unforseen…”

Sindrathiir curses. “Quick, who can stabilize him?”

“Get the lantern over here!” Ruke runs to the edge of the hole and looks down it.

Sin moves with Ruke, just to the edge of the pit. With her dark sight she gazes down. “He’s down there, wounded… there’s a tunnel leading off to the east.”

Ruke will quickly start working on setting up a rope and piton.

Tania, “oh crap…. well… this is familiar”

Arthur Grevane huffs and puffs and runs up! “Oh, my. We need to climb down there!”

Kierdan Summers stays on his back, splayed on the cold, dark earth. He decides, probably wisely, that doing nothing is the best course of action.

Sindrathiir “I can levitate someone so they can float down there safely. Who will have trouble climbing down?”

Tania raises her hand, “I cant climb”

Sindrathiir reaches to touch Tania, and she feels lighter. “Go ahead and go down ahead of us with your lantern, stand guard over him.” Tania has levitation for 1 minute.

Kierdan Summers mutters up toward the opening, trying to be as quiet as possible to not rouse whatever denizens this new warren holds. “Bring a potion with you, could you?”

“I got my bag!” Tania says as she hops down hoping the levitate works

“Be careful,” Ruke warns Tania, while he is setting up the piton somewhere secure enough that it’ll support them.

Darius walks with the rest

Tania floats down to him gracefully with a smile “Hello there~ need a hand?” smirking as she kneel-floats beside him and gently goes to put the potion to his lips “Let me take care of you”

Kierdan, “’preciate it, sweetheart.”

Sin and Darius have to wait until some room is free down below.

Ruke climbs down, then moves past the others and draws his sword—keeping an eye out.

Darius seems to get climbing down

The tunnels below are burrowed through the stone far below the city. They look like a mix of natural tunnels and crude, hand-carved tunnels, as if someone came in and widened a fissure already present. The ground here is uneven and considered difficult terrain. Running or charging requires an appropriate check to avoid tripping. The tunnels are approximately ten feet across, and extend to teh north and to the south-east. A distant sound of rushing water echoes from the north, while a harder to hear scraping and creaking occasionally echoes from the southern tunnel.

Tania heals kierdan for 3 with the potion, while Darius and his pet climb down successfully, leaving only Sin to get down the hole.

Arthur, “Well! I wonder how many people know about all of this. You know, with the proper explosives, we could collapse all the tunnels without having to explore them. Though it would likel;y do the same to the mansion above. Hmm, hm.”

Kierdan Summers drinks down the potion, staggering to his feet slowly on the rough terrain. “Killing our client isn’t an option.”

Tania smiles and just gives him another potion “Here keep this incase”

Ruke, “You seem to go to fire and explosives as an answer pretty quickly, Arthur…” His tone suggests he isn’t sure if thats good or bad.

Kierdan, “You can bet your last copper that he’ll demand that we replace his mansion, too. I don’t think you have 160,000 gold crowns saved away for a rainy day.”

Kierdan Summers takes the potion from Tania with a nod, popping the cork and knocking it back, just in case.

Their voices echo down the old stone tunnels pretty readily. Now there’s nothing but cold stone damp with condensation to still their voices. The ground isn’t even all that dirty or muddy, just a thin layer of dust broken in places with trails, as if an animal disturbed the dust at some point.

Arthur, "It all depends on how we spin it. ‘You never have to climb those stairs again.’’

Sin “I can’t help but think maybe we should try to hire a cleric to come with us at some point.”

Kierdan, “I could join the clergy… of a god of wealth, maybe. Or love.”

“They said I was too stupid to be a cleric,” Ruke grumbles to himself.

Tania rolls her eyes “or people could be more careful… you and Kierdan are made for one another both of you rush into danger”

“North – to the water, or south to… scraping noises?” Ruke asks, knowing the area not to be safe.

Kierdan Summers smirks, lifting his gaze up to Sindrathiir. “That was nice shooting, Sindrathiir.”

Darius, “Scrapin noises is… enemies right?”

“My dear lady, I do not rush!” Arthur says in a huff. “I plan ahead.”

Sin shakes her head “sorry about that, I totally didn’t think ahead.”

“Probably,” Ruke nods to Darius.

Kierdan, “Psh, you killed the fucker. I didn’t take my own advice, was my own damn fault. Don’t apologize for bein’ a crackshot.”

Sin can’t fail the climb down, so she’ll climb down and move past the group

“Alright then, So we would go toward the enemy, right?” Darius signals to Ruke and Tania

Kierdan, “Well, unless we plan to build a funnel rig and flood the tunnels, I don’t think goin’ north is gonna get us anywhere.”

Sin “you want me to go look ahead? Since I have darkvision and all… Then again a lucky blow and I’m dead so..”

Darius, “Will you survive? Last time that did not go well" Darius scratches his chin with gusto

Arthur, “You can go look ahead with, I think, an armored man in front of you.”

Kierdan Summers cracks a small grin. “The man with the shield volunteers.”

Sin “Yeah but that kind of blows the whole idea of stealth. Still, let’s get this show on the road.” What’s the party’s preferred marching order here?

Darius enchants Valyanna’s armor with runic symbols in Celestial (Mage armor)

The halls echo with their footsteps and the sound of their armor, though when Tania steps out into the hall they can get a clearer view of things. In the light of the lantern, the north passage splits to the east and the west, and to the south-east the corridor splits to the east and the south.

Sin creeps up behind Kierdan, then stops, “The corridor to the east… there’s a broken wall, and some stairs leading down..”

Indeed, as Tania moves up, the edge of what Sin sees becomes visible in the lanternlight. There’s a passage of crumbling stone walls that has been excavated. The stone is far older than the manor above, looking to be centuries in age. A staircase leads down, worn down in the middle so the steps bow down, as if by the passage of many feet.

Kierdan, “Cave fishers don’t seem like the type to build stairs… they must have moved into some old ruins.”

Tania, “What the heck is this mansion built on top of?”

Kierdan, “Cities built on top of cities… the march of civilization.”

Ruke, “Interesting…”

Sin “Does that mean there could be more things like this under other buildings then?”

“It’s pretty likely. Hell if I know for sure, though.” Kierdan Summers motions for Ruke to move up and look down the right-hand passage.

Sin loads her crossbow, just to be ready.

Ruke will do so, though he kind of gestures for the light to be brought up too.

Arthur Grevane loads his, too. Though he’s also thinking in terms of bombs…

There’s not enough light to see down the right hand passage from there, but that’s definitely where the creaking sound is coming from. It’s like someone hung some armor out on a rack and the wind is stirring it. Except there’s no wind. Further, the dust on the floor is thicker down the south, with no evidence that it has been disturbed.

Tania reloads her crossbow as well to make sure that she was well prepared.

Ruke, “Noise is coming this way,” he’ll gesture everyone close.

Kierdan Summers takes a few seconds to sling his shield, get one of his torches out, and light it with his flint and steel, holding it in his off-hand.

As Tania moves closer to the corner, Ruke avances into the retreating darkness. Until there, just there, ten to fifteen feet away the advancing lantern light glints off of some bronze armor. The armor is worn by a skeleton, standing before a great bronze door set into a similar stone building’s corner that peeks out of the very rough unworked stone wall. The skeleton occasionally shifts, its bones creaking together, the armor scrapes against itself as the skeleton keeps its eternal vigil up. It holds a masterfully crafted steel longsword, and a heavy steel shield.

Arthur Grevane looks at this, and makes sure his bomb materials are at hand.

And then Tania comes around the corner further, revealing a second skeleton. The double bronze doors that are behind them stand shut, and are decorated with exquisite reliefs, showing a rising sun over a city with low buildings. The landscape around the buildings resembles that the city above is built on, at least somewhat.

Ruke pauses, dumbfounded. He takes a moment to scan these two skeletons for…evil.

They are evil.

Sin “Heh. I wonder how much it would suck to have guard duty forever, with no days off.”

Ruke, “These are foul creatures of evil, we should cleanse them.”

Kierdan, “I’m in no rush to find out. Right-o.”

Darius nods slowly to Ruke

Arthur Grevane whispers. “If you want to start an attack, they are close together right now for one of my special experiments…”

“Take your spots.” Ruke grips the hilt of his sword tightly. “Do it, Arthur, when we’re ready.”

Kierdan Summers steps up next to Ruke, tossing the torch underhand ten feet in front of him before he draws his shield.

As Kierdan tosses the torch that close, the skeletons spring into action. The first of the skeletal guardians setps forth, opening its mouth to emit a hoarse scream that barely qualifies as one. There’s a harsh, voiceless whisper in a language none can comprehend as it slashes at Kierdan with its longsword. The second moves forward in near tandem with the first, with the same unearthly scream, the same strange, hissing whispers. This one slashes at Ruke though.

Kierdan Summers instinctively lifts his arm to block, except his shield is still on his back. The blow staggers him, but he doesn’t fall.

That second skeleton lashes ruke across the chest, exposing his lungs.

Ruke is surprised when these things spring forward so quickly. He’s more surprised when he looks down at his chest and sees some blood and organs.

Sin winces “Holy shit…” She then fires at the skeleton that just dropped Ruke. Her crossbow bolt manages to scratch one of its bones. “Uh, we need to bludgeon these don’t we?” She reloads before the end of her turn though.

Darius reloads his sling and tosses a bullet, Valyanna going in with a glaive

His sling stone clanks off of the skeleton’s breastplate. And the eidolon’s glaive swishes through the air, missing entirely.

Tania moves around arthur to shot the skeletons “Darius move forward to get the skeletons back!”

Tania’s shot goes wide.

Darius, “O-Okay..”

Kierdan Summers pulls back from the fray to not die before he collapses from the exertion.

Most ignominously, Kierdan withdraws from the combat.

Thankfully, he has a bludgeon! Unfortunately, those guys are kind of not quite in bomb-range (mostly because his fallen friend is, too!) So Arthur attempts to smack the nearest skeleton with his weaponized cane (hey whaddaya know, it turns out to be a light mace!), and five-foot-steps back.

Arthur just flat out misses, and you can’t back into that square

The first of the skeletal guardians raises its sword, and chops down toward Ruke’s defenseless body.

Darius’ eidolon clanks its glave on the floor, missing entirely, and then the guardian BEHEADS Ruke. if he’s still alive that’s a dc 22 fort save to live. And the second skeleton weilds his blade and puts his power behind a power attack toward Arthur. Though it clearly misses. That whispering continues unabated.

Sin “Man, maybe we should’ve sent the eidolons in first, and you know, found a place to retreat to before attacking… and maybe got some bludgeoning weapons… Actually you know what? I’m out of here..” And she flees back down the hall, to hide.

“Arthur..Bombs..Now, back out,” Darius casts Acid splash on the 1st Skeleton while Valyanna swings again

Hisss, the acid corrodes the first guardian’s bones somewhat. CRUNCH! The eidolon impacts the skeleton heavily, smashing into its bones and leaving it barely standing. After a moment’s tugging, the eidolon manages to dislodge the glaive from the skeleton.

Darius, “Take it out now Arthur”

Tania reloads and fires, her white dress and hair now splattered with the blood of her fallen comrade. Standing there seemingly unphased.

Tania’s blow strikes true, but the bolt just fails to penetrate the bones. It rattles through the thing’s rib cage and falls to the floor like a pachinko ball.

Kierdan continue to bleed, while Ruke’s body spasms a bit. Arthur!

Arthur Grevane goes right ahead and gets the BOMBS! So he takes a five-foot step away from the skeletons, and then he will toss the bomb at Skeleton 1, to try to hit both skellies without damaging anybody living.

The skeleton swishes its sword at Arthur as he moves. Arthur’s bomb impacts the first skeleton and rattles around inside for a moment, before it detonates. The first skeleton explodes, its body parts fall everywhere. The other skeleton is scorched from the blast. As is Ruke’s body. It smells like cooking meat. The skeletal guardian advances.

They eidolon misses, the skeletal guardian brings its sword up and slashes at Arthur.

Arthur Grevane is knocked out! Not even his top hat could protect him!

Sin fires from the shadows at the remaining skeleton, sneak attacking it, and she misses. “DAMNIT!” She curses.

Darius tries another acid splash before rushing in with Grimoire while Valyanna Swings provoking the attack

Darius acid splash strikes home, sizzling the thing’s bones somewhat. And then after taking the hit, the eidolon completely misses, scraping the glaive along the corridor wall.

Tania quickly turns and uncorks one of her potions pouring it down his throat, “Arthur your potions SUCK!!!”

Kierdan Summers blinks, opening his eyes while still feeling mostly-dead. “Bloody hell, this really is Hell, isn’t it… you got another one of those, Tania?”

The guardian slashes his sword at Darius.

Tania, “Why are the people that are supposed to be living the ones dieing on us!!!”

So darius gets crit for 19, and Sin blinks, “What the hell are these things on, they keep hewing people apart…” She advances there and administers her healing potion from earlier to Kierdan.

Kierdan Summers drinks down the potion, giving Sin a smile. “That’s what I’m talkin’ ‘bout, darlin’.”

Sin “Now save us… please.”

Kierdan, “I’ll do m’best. Those fuckers are tough.”

Kierdan go ahead, tania can catch up when she gets back or whatever.

Tania moves and quickly summons a celestial dog behind the skeleton and have it attack the skeleton “Arthur, dont you fall too…. take my bag. use the potions left there”

Tania feeds Arthur a potion, he’s still negative. But he’s not dying anymore

Kierdan Summers rises to his feet, reaching for his shield and strapping it to his arm while his player decides how the hell to best not die in this mess. Kierdan Summers advances on the skeleton, using his swift action to pick up his warhammer and his free action to point it at the bony beast. “Now, you and me, we’re gonna have a reckoning. Win or lose, I’m not going to go down without a fight. Wouldn’t be very flattering to the ladies if I did.”

The skeleton turns its eyes to Kierdan and hisses in that spectral voice, albeit in a language he can’t understand.

The floor of the tunnel by now is slick with blood and slippery. The skeleton raises its blade, and prepares a power attack. It slashes at Kierdan.

Kierdan Summers blocks the attack properly this time, now that he has his shield. “You gotta do better than that.”

Sin moves to the skeleton and tries to smack it with the butt of her crossbow. And fails.

Tania gives her last potion to Darius trying to maintain composure as everything crumbles around them

Kierdan Summers hefts his hammer, spinning it on its cord before he brings it around to attempt to smash the skeleton into next week.

Still, Kierdan’s hammer smashes the skeleton HARD, crushing it under its bludgeoning bluntness. The bones crack, and the thing collapses. A last gasp of unwholesome life escapes its lips as it falls.

Sin “About… time.” She leans against the wall, panting.

Kierdan Summers cracks a grin to the drow. “One rescue, as requested. Thanks for the potion.”

Tania moves back and just holds Darius as she looks to the dead body and just cries

Arthur Grevane remains rather unconscious for the moment. Though he has his own healing extract on his person.

Kierdan Summers turns to the slashed, charred body of Ruke, lowering his hammer as he murmurs a prayer over the man’s corpse. “Gods above, guide your servant to his worthy rest. He’s more than earned it.”

Sin walks over and nudges Ruke’s headless corpse with one foot. “you know, I always figured a paladin’d get someone killed. Guess we just got lucky it was him.”

Kierdan, “Oi, give him some credit. He tried hard. That greatsword was the end of ’im.”

Tania, “SHUT UP!!! A MAN JUST GOT BEHEADED INFRONT OF US!”

Sin “Well yeah, he died honorably. I’ll give him that much. So uh…” She then looks back to Tania, raising her snowy brows.

Kierdan, “Yeah, he did. And he was a good man, too.”

Sin then smiles sweetly “I bet if you yell loud enough, more creepy crawlies will come down the corridors to finish the job. How about we take him up, take what we can, and get the wounded out of here to recover?”

Kierdan Summers takes a slippery step toward Tania. "And a lot more good men will, as time goes on. I guarantee you that. If you can’t handle that, you’re in the wrong line of business. Sad, but true. I’m more concerned with gettin’ me and ours out of this hellhole, gettin’ paid, and gettin’ everybody back on their feet. Now, d’you wanna die down here? ‘Cause I don’t and I know Sindrathiir don’t either.”

Tania, “He died bleeding out in this god forsaken basement… there is no honor in that. I want to stab that snotty brat this place is a death trap how could someone not know this was in their basement!”

Kierdan, “Did you?”

Tania, “I dont live here!”

Kierdan, “We saw the ground, nothin’ looked like it was gonna collapse. How was he to know? This shit is more ancient than your grandmother’s grandmother.”

Tania, “Get off your high horse…. this is shit in you know it”

Kierdan, “Now, we can keep arguin’ and yellin’ all damn night, or we can go get paid, get healed, and give Ruke a proper memorial. My high horse is outside, honey.”

Tania gets up and slowly summons her eidilon to carry the wounded.

Their voices carry down the stone corridors, echoing back and forth.

Kierdan Summers kneels down, scooping up one of the skeletons’ longswords. “Grab what you can and let’s get out of here.”

Darius is still out.

Arthur Grevane dreams of… wait, dreams are nonsencial. So he dreams of hippopotami.

The longsword is finely crafted, a masterwork. Both of the longswords are, actually. The breastplates are also finely crafted, though due to the fact that theyr’e made of bronze, it works out that they just use the basic breastplate stats and value.

Kierdan Summers turns to Sin. “I’ve got some rope in my pack, wanna go tie off a lead up top so we can get the bodies up the pit?”

Sin picks up the other longsword, before she moves back to the others. “The rope we climbed down on is still up there.” Sin can help drag someone along the cold, cold stone. Do they cart the wounded up to the basement?

It takes fifteen minutes, but they manage to get the wounded out into the safety of the basement, as well as whatever of the loot they wish.

Sin “Who wants to go talk with the young lord? Tell him what’s up down here… And do we want to pay to have these men healed?”

Kierdan, “I will go talk to him.”

So Kierdan is lead up to meet the young lord in that same sitting room in short order. The boy is settled in a chair, lounging back and reading. He speaks without looking up from the book, “So did you solve the mystery of the noises below?”

Kierdan Summers nods to the boy, his warhammer and new longsword hanging from his belt. “Yes, we did. You won’t be having any further problems with the noises below.”

The boy nods “I hope not. It is quite distressing to have to constantly replace servants. What did it end up being?”

Kierdan, “I believe it was called a “cavefisher”. We dispatched it for you.”

Atelius nods “Good, good. Is that all?” Finally he looks up from his book, marking his place to look up to Kierdan.

Kierdan, “Once we get our pay, yeah, that’ll be all. A hundred and twenty platinum pieces, as agreed.”

The boy nods and waves absently. The butler from before approaches with a heavy pouch bound by a draw string. It jingles as he holds it out. “Well,” Atelius speaks, “If that is all, Willard will show you out.”

Kierdan Summers grabs the pouch from the butler, nodding to the old bag of bones. “Might take us a few minutes to get the wounded out, we’ll try to make it quick.”

Willard nods, “If you require any assistance, I shall be on hand.” Otherwise, they are left to leave. 120 platinum richer. Plus the armor and blades from the skeletons. Since they technically finished that short excursion, each surviving party member gets 360 xp.

Tania invites them to her and Darius’ home its closer

Tania, “…. use it to pay for his funeral, the rest we can use for healing”

They’ll head toward Tania and Darius’ place then. They can either hire a cleric straight up to heal the group, or they can hire a healer to tend to the wounded with ordinary healing.

Kierdan, “Yeah, that too. He deserves a headstone, at least.”

The priests at the temple of Law cover Ruke’s burial.

Tania looks like she might bash someone when they ask for payment.

Kierdan Summers does his best to explain that Ruke fell in the service of everything good and Lawful and that they were gravely wounded while trying to rescue his body from the clutches of the foul evil while simultaneously smiting said evil for the good of the Land, and her People, and the Law. All while keeping a straight face.

Kierdan explains what he does, and the temple actually buys it, because it’s not exactly far from the truth. The stink of the undead still lingers about Ruke’s body. The priests bustle out, and a few lay on hands, cure light wounds, and first aid applications later, around two hours later everyone is at full hit points. AND, on that note we can wrap up for the night, with the group set to head back to their homes to rest for the night. Do they put the 20 pp into a party fund or something?

Success! In that case, Kierdan suggests that they spend the 20 pp to outfit everyone with 2 healing potions from Arthur and split the rest. Kierdan will equip the masterwork bronze breastplate and sell his chainmail.

Tania is very protective when they work on Darius and only leaves to talk to Kierdan “…. I’m sorry I lost it down there” her hair and dressed still splattered with blood.

Kierdan Summers shakes his head, giving Tania a very intense, very stern look. "Listen to what I am about to tell you very carefully, Tania. It’s very easy to lose yer head when people are going down around you. If ya panic, if ya yell and scream, all you’re doin’ is makin’ sure that you join ‘em. Keep your head, and you’ll do better for Darius than you ever will if you yell. Not sayin’ it to be cruel, sayin’ it ’cause it might save your life someday, and the lives of the people that you travel with. Got it?”

Darius is groggy as he gets up.

Now that everybody is awake again… “Well, I must say, as far as afterlives go, this one is very boring.” Arthur adjusts his glasses.

Tania bows her head nodding before just tearing up and crying into her hands “I-I-Im sorry! im so sorry! I just- it happened all so fast, I didnt even think and I could have- I should have done something to save him! but- but I never saw a construct do that! it just beheaded him right before me!”

Kierdan Summers has already changed into his new armor and acquired a sheath for his new longsword while everyone was recovering.

Sin “Also my grandma said that screaming underground tends to draw wandering monsters, whatever that means.”

Kierdan, “It won’t be the last time. I guarantee it. Sad, but true. If you wanna keep your head, you gotta keep your cool.”

Ok so the ‘party treasure’ for that also consisted of one extra breastplate and an extra masterwork longsword beyond what kierdan took

Kierdan Summers places a hand on the girl’s shoulder. “Ya gotta be strong. I’ve seen that eidolon of yours, ya got a fire in ya.”

Tania looks up at him nodding “…ok” before she notice Darius is up running to him and hugging him tight happy he’s okay.

Kierdan doesn’t even use longswords, really, he’s just taking it because it’s masterwork and it’d be handy to have.

Ruke’s party stuff will be returned to the party MISC: Spare Clothing, POTIONS: 1 Cure Light Wounds, SCROLL: 1 Sleep (CL1), Healing Kit (20 uses), 3 SP, 4 CP. And he had that +1 ring of protection, and he had another CLW potion on him.

OK, so everybody gets another 98 gp 5 sp and we can put the 20 pp toward making potions. With Arthur’s bonus, that’s 8 CLW potions.

Arthur will also begin to attempt learning how to make his extracts for other people, too. By force-feeding Sin what would, on him, be a Cure Light Wounds.

Sin will NOT accept that.

“Who, praytell, am I supposed to give it to? A hobo?”

Sin “I’m sure we can find one willing to swallow that stuff down for a copper.”

“I could add sugar to it.”:

Darius raises his hand to volunteer for the experiement if Taia will let him

View
Downtime and a New Adventure
As well as a party being officially born.

We had a slow start this session, and a lot of book keeping, so the start of the session is summarized.

The party spends some time in town. They identify what of the loot they want to sell or identify. They take time to sell the weapons, and discover that the scrollcase they captured holds a scroll, and that in addition to the dwarf’s ring, the stone was also magical. The end total of cash was 1968 gp, 3 sp, and 4 cp. It was decided to split it to 328 gp each, with the left over spent on a meal or something. Gear was purchased, and time was spent resting and identifying things. Two characters got new armor fitted, and some barding was fitted for Kierdan’s horse. Healing potions were purchased while Arthur was away, but will likely be retconned to where the alchemist can contribute to making them to save the party some money.

Each person’s share of experience was 442.

So anyway, the party has about 2 days of downtime before any major adventures. They have three magical items to identify (A scroll, a ring, and a Suspicious Stone), and have split the money from the sale of the various other items to 328 gp each. They’ve got 442 XP each from that adventure. Custom fitting studded leather barding for a horse can be done in two days.

OK, so buying chainmail for me and studded leather for Setanta, selling our old armors… and I’ll pick up a healing kit while I’m at it for later.

Tania spends most of her gold on more magic CLW potions and a nice safe bag to put them in so that they wont break if they get justled around. Then getting to work on identification of the items

Ruke purchased some banded mail and two CLW potions. He’ll give one of these potions to Tania when he sees her in payment for the one she used on him.

Tania takes the potion and blushes softly “you didnt have to do that”

Ruke, “I repay my debts, Miss Tania.”

“Oh please just call me Tania, we are good friends now arnt we?”

Ruke smiles. “Indeed. As you wish.”

Darius spends his gold on two potions of CLW, a chainshirt, and a buckler selling his studded leather for 12.5 gp

Darius tries to remember what bit they taught him at the tower when it comes to idetifying magic, he grunts in frustration.

Tania gently shakes her head at Darius “Dont damage it”

Tania doesn’t know what the ring does. It radiates ‘abjuration’ and the stone radiates ‘conjuration’, but that much is clear.

Ruke will go visit Sin on day one and day two—even if its just to say hi and hang out. He’d recommend giving Sin a shot at examining the items if the other two are having trouble.

Sin tries to identify them, but knows nothing that first day. Day 2?

Tania is going to ask Darius to aide her in finding out the second day

Darius will have to do his aid another rolls, then you can make the adjusted roll. Sin can aid you too.

Darius nods.. Not really confident in this book learnie stuff, but does it because she says so. Darius will aid on two because he has no Read magic

After some consultation, Tania still has no idea what the stone does. The ring is a Ring of Protection +1, the scroll is a Scroll with the wizard spell ‘Sleep’ on it.

Sin, “Can I see that stone a sec?”

Tania hands it over

Sin concentrates upon it. She then screams as shrapnel from the stones under the farmhouse floor blast up and perforate her body. She falls to the ground bleeding.

Darius, “I dont think that is supposed to do that … Oh right .. Um… Here..”

Ruke will stabilize Sin with but a touch of his hand.

Darius pours a potion down her throat

Ruke stabilizes her. Then Darius pours the potion down her throat.

Ruke looks concerned. “By the Gods, what was that?”

Tania just pokes the stone with a stick staying the fuck back.

Arthur has spent this time buying supplies and accidentally exploding stuff/.

It seems that Sin is only really useful for having a hot drow chick unconscious around the group a lot. She is given the potion but is still at negative hit points.

Tania keeps her potion bag away from darius

Darius` has his own.

Tania, “okay… someone get a medic”

Darius uses another.

Tania, “Darius stop that!”

She’ll be back in positive territory tomorrow, especially if Arthur tends to her that night.

Darius, “Stop what? She’s hurt… Right? You made her explode so should we not help her? I’m confused…”

Ruke, “Arthur can attend to her tonight and make sure she recovers.” Ruke believes in helping people, but he is frugal with his money and supplies as well.

Darius believes in helping people and isn’t frugal..which is why he gave that rogue his last gold, even though he got hit. “You…S-Sure?” Darius seems really worried… as it was alot of shrapnel.

Tania, “yes im sure… Arthur can help her get better without you using the potions…. potions can actually start to hurt if you use to many too fast”

Ruke nods in agreement with Tania.

Darius, "Really? Oh I didnt know that … You must have paid attention in class more than me .. I’ll remember that next time. Darius nods and smiles

“Arthur is one of the leading specialists in his field too. Whatever that field might be,” Ruke is unclear on that, as he is many things.

Tania pats him on the head then gives him a kiss on the cheek before looking at the stone moving to pick it up gently no to use it or activate it in anyway.

Darius bends down for the pat, “So what do we do with that? Is it a weapon?”

Ruke, “It sure is…something. I would say keep it and not activate it until it has been studied throughly.”

“I could take it to the wizards tower,” Tania suggests. “They should be able to identify it”

The silver flask with strong alchohol is worth 25 gp for its silver content and its workmanship. The blue tower will be happy to identify the stone, but it’ll cost about 25 gp for anyone to look at it.

Ruke suggests they trade the silver flask for the identification.

Also of note: During those two days, it becomes clear what the problems in the fields are. There appears to be some sort of insectoid creature burrowing under the northern fields and killing people and livestock. It seems to be above the group’s paygrade, but may be worth looking at in the future. Other rumors the group has heard is something about a haunted tower within the forests about an hour south of the Blue Tower. Some travelers mentioned staying the night there, only to be chased off by spectral lights. They told of the place still having valuable furnishings within it, and the folk at the market say that the travelers did sell some silverware they’d salvaged from the place, worth more than a few gold. There’s also a tale of someone in town looking for people to check into strange noises from his basement.

“Very well, go ahead and do that, Tania.” Ruke will give her the silver flask to use as payment for the task.

Darius nods giving Grimoire a once over.

And they can discuss what they’d like to do next, assuming they can still stand each other. After all, they’ve got their first taste of the profits of adventure, they know they can work with one another. They know they can probably get Kierdan from the duke’s barracks again, likely temptable with tales of glory he could earn.

Tania does go to the blue tower with the stone, she discovers it’s a Minor Stone of Elemental Servitude. When placed on stone of any sort, it can summon a Small Earth Elemental Slave, in a manner similar to the stone of controlling earth elementals. The summon takes a full round to complete. Only one such small elemental can be summoned at any one time, and they are dispellable as if cast by a CL 5 caster, treated as monster summoning III. However, it summons the same elemental each time, and if that elemental is slain, it can’t be resummoned until the next day. The small elemental summoned is named ‘Grun’, is of limited intellect, has a severely truncated vocabulatry, and tends to call whoever summons it ‘Boss’.

Tania goes off the blue tower which is a good four hours on foot requesting Darius stay at home to help the group decide if they want to adventure like this again.

Darius is very against Letting Tania by herself and complains a bit before letting her go

Ruke would request the presence of all the party members the next day (when Sin would be concious) at Sin’s lodgings to discuss ‘business opportunities’ for glory and gold. He figures the next day would be best so the drow can weigh in.

Sin’s residence technically belongs to a farmer who was eaten by the burrowing creatures, so they won’t be evicted just yet.

Kierdan Summers shows up if he’s invited.

Darius attends slightly concerned as to the well being of Sin after getting to know a bit about her. He looks eye level to Ruke with his red eyes and smiles. “So Sir Ruke, What is it you …Um…Want?”

Tania stays with Darius in their small home until summoned by Ruke. Keeping the stone until then when she comes in with Darius yawning gently

Ruke invites everyone. Kierdan, Tania, Arthur, Sin, Darius. … Kierdan’s horse. Santana… shit, what was her name. The paladin would have to write the name down sometime. He smiles at the group and asks: “Have you all heard the rumors around town?”

Kierdan Summers dismounts from Setanta, the horse looking fine in his brand-new studded leather barding. Kierdan, himself, is dressed in shiny, brand-new chainmail as well as his personal tabard. “Aye, been hearin’ ‘em while I was takin’ care of business.”

“We all worked well together back with the bandits. We might be able to do more good,” Ruke puts an emphasis on good, but everyone could put their own spin on glory and gold there too as they wanted to. “If we keep working together. I think it might be possible to help the person with basement problems or look into the haunted tower.”

Darius raises his hand. “Would it not be better to help the farmers first? No food equals dead people during winter correct?”

Kierdan, “Question. Is there a paycheck involved?”

Ruke, “The strength of the creature has me concerned… it might be more than we could handle.”

The guards are considering a bounty on the burrowing things, especially since some guards have been killed by them. The fellow who wanted folk to look into the problem in his basement is in a mansion in the rich section of town, but hadn’t been more specific. The haunted tower is said to have loot laying around within it, but no specific pay associated with it.

Ruke, “Well, the paycheck with the tower would mostly involve…recovering the goods and selling them. We did well with that last time. We’d have to ask the man with the basement problem what he would be willing to offer in terms of compensation.”

Kierdan, “Sounds like a plan. Let’s go for it.”

Sin blinks sleepily “Go for which one? It seems to me that if the tower is there it’ll be there tomorrow, we could look into this fellow’s basement troubles today most likely, since he’s in town.”

Kierdan, “Prolly the basement first, seems easiest… hey, are you OK, Sindrathiir? You look like you got used for target practice.”

Sin “In my grandmother’s day, thieves and rogues died CONSTANTLY. I see why now.”

Tania giggles when Kierdan comments on Sindrathiir’s looks .

Kierdan Summers steps a bit closer to Sin, looking genuinely concerned… maybe? Nah, couldn’t be. “The hell happened?”

Ruke, “Er, we had an ‘accident’ the other day, but… it worked out. As much as I would like to help the farmers, it might be best to focus ourselves on task we’re capable of performing. We don’t do any good to anyone dead.”

Sindrathiir offers a weak smile “I tried to activate a magical item without identifying it first.”

Kierdan Summers gives the drow a similar smile back. “Well, I’m glad that you’re doin’ OK.”

Tania pouts in a huff “You two should just get a room and get it over with. I’m up for the basement.”

Ruke coughs into his hand and looks away. “Yes. I agree. … with the basement thing.”

Kierdan Summers gives Sin a quick wink before he turns to Ruke, getting back to business. “Aye, best ta focus on things that’re in our league ’fore we overextend ourselves and end up dead.”

Ruke, “We can go over there today, then, if everyone is agreeable to the idea.”

Sin scowls at Tania, only to shake her head, sitting up right. “The basement thing then? Shall we head there after lunch then?”

Darius, “If Tania wants to sure … but I still think the burrowers are .. important… Maybe if we had a few more guards … But this basement thing is probably nothing”

Tania nods and just puts and arm around Darius’ “Dont worry hun we’ll elp the farmers soon, we just gotta make sure there are no bad things INSIDE the town first”

Darius grins at that “If you say so … I guess after Lunch like Sin says”

Ruke nods, agreeable to all that.

Kierdan, “Sounds like a plan.”

And so after lunch, they head into town. It takes fully an hour to get into town, and traverse the streets toward the Noble Quarter. Passing estates of marble, with luxurious fountains and gardens, they come up to the address they had heard about. A gated iron fence sets the estate off from Halnadun Lane, and it’s a short walk up a white gravel path to great oaken doors bound with brass. A pair of lion headed knockers hold large bronze rings over knockplates.

Ruke knocks on the door and looks to the others while they await an answer.

Kierdan Summers stands alongside Ruke, having instructed Setanta to wait on the lane.

Tania is just playing with her bracelet beside Darius happily waiting

After a moment, the door opens, and a man in his fifties, dressed in a smart black and white outfit opens the door. He sniffs a bit, and looks the party over. “You certainly have a scruffy look to you. You are here about the master’s inquiries, I presume?”

Ruke, “Indeed, we are.”

The man nods, then opens the door, “Come in, come in, and try not to be seen hmm?”

Kierdan Summers gives the butler a gracious nod.

“Thank you.” Ruke will enter into the building.

Kierdan Summers follows after Ruke, his chainmail making plenty of noise before one considers the shield banging against his backpack.

Tania enters though with a bit a of pout as she looks up at darius “Do I look scruffy?”

They are lead through an opulent hallway into a sitting room, where they are bid take a seat. It wouldn’t be more than a few moments there before the ‘master’ arrives. He’s a boy of perhaps fourteen, clad in rich tunic and trousers, a rather arrogant look about him that seems to melt away when he sees the group as it is. “Well well, it certainly seems that a little money brings out the dregs. Still, what must be done, must be done. I am Atelius, Lord of the Manor after my parents’ recent death. And it seems that I’ve inherited a bit of a problem. There have been all manner of unwholesome noises from below the wine cellar, and it is frightening many of my new servants. It’s difficult enough to keep them as is, without some manner of creature frightening them away.”

Darius, “So what do you want us to do..Silence the noise…right?”

Ruke takes a seat somewhere and fiddles with his holy symbol while he is waiting. He gives the boy a lookover upon his arrival.

Atelius nods “Yes, in so many words. Use whatever means is necessary.” The boy is certainly not evil. “I am willing to pay a hundred twenty platinum for you to find out whatever is causing these noises and end it.”

Kierdan Summers remains standing, but he does give the boy a bow. Listening to the proposal, he nods swiftly. “Sounds good to me, how ’bout you all?”

Tania felt like punting the small boy who was not too much younger then herself but held back just squeezing Darius’ arm likely silently nodding while still imagine kicking the brat in the balls.

Ruke detects evil on the boy anyway. He can do it at-will, so why not? Paladin eyes.

Atelius bows his head “Right then, I will get Willard to show you down, if there’s no more questions.”

Ruke asks: “You have no idea what might be making the noise?”

Atelius shakes his head “no, I don’t go into the basement, that’s the servant’s job. They say it is some sort of growling sometimes, and some sort of moaning at other times, as well as the sound of scraping and grinding stone.”

“Lovely. Alright.” Ruke stands up and prepares himself.

Kierdan Summers nods to the boy. “We’ll take care of it at once, m’lud.”

Tania rolls her eyes gently at Kierdan “its my lord, if your going to give the boy proper acknowledment do it right” stretching her limbs gently “growling, moaning and scratching sounds like a dog”

Kierdan Summers snickers softly to Tania, glancing back to the girl. “You need to spend more time at court, I think.”

Darius, “Or Rats..Big rats maybe”

“We won’t know for sure until we get down there and look.”

Kierdan, “Let’s get to it, then.”

Ruke will wait for Willard to show them the way.

And so the old butler moves to lead them through the halls, and into the kitchens. There is a door that leads down old stone stairs and into some extensive cellars. He moves without fear through the first cellar, and the group can hear something, like rough claws against stone, just echoing from the darkness beyond the lit area. He offers whoever may take it a hooded lantern, with a full complement of lamp oil. “You will find an archway at the end of this room. Through there, the old cellars begin. I trust you will be able to handle this job discretely?”

Kierdan, “We’re the face of discretion, believe me.”

Ruke, “Can someone else take the latern? I need both my hands for my sword.”

Tania moves to take the lantern “Here I can take it…. I do not need my hands for my magic”

Darius unstraps his blade

Kierdan Summers doesn’t reach for his hammer just yet, but he does tie its cord around his right wrist.

Ruke grabs his greatsword off his back. He’ll then head towards the archway, matching his pace with the others as to make sure the area ahead of them remains illuminated and he doesn’t go off and walk into the darkness alone or something.

The butler does not look impressed. Still, he just gestures to the end of the hall, and turns to leave them there. And on that note, we’ll call it for the night.

View
The Adventure Begins (Session 4)
The journey back to town

So when we left the group last, they were trying to figure out how to get the fat princess, er, Helga the merchant’s wife… out of the 10’ deep pit she was in. Also there was a lockbox in the room that must weigh a hundred pounds itself.

Arthur holds up a 50’ coil of hempen rope. “You know, there are solutions…”

“Yes… yes. We could…” Ruke stares at the rope, then looks at Arthur’s face. “…do something with that rope.”

“Well, now. I think we might all need to haul her up, indeed…” Arthur nods, and calls to the lady. “My dear, can you tie a harness?”

Ruke, “…ah-ha! Excellent idea, good men.”

Helga calls up “No, no I cannot, I have no idea what you mean by that.”

Arthur, “I think we may be at a slight impasse with the lady.”

“Can either of you make a lasso? Then we could… lasso her,” Ruke offers.

“We might harm her around the spine, you know. Especially…” at her weight? Well, of course.

“One of us could go down there and try to boost her, while the others pulled her up?” The paladin seems to hit on a plan. “Miss, how did you get down there in the first place?” Ruke asks Helga, just to make sure he isn’t missing something.

Helga “They had a mule lower me down. It was so embarassing! The ropes broke when I was halfway down and I fell on my butt! I still hurt.”

“I’m so sorry about that, thats terrible.” Ruke then looks back to the others and lowers his voice. “Unless someone has a better idea, I can try to boost her up, but I’ going to need the rest of you to help pull her up.” Ruke will climb down into the pit and remove most of his gear so he won’t be weighed down. He’ll then look at Helga, “I’m going to help boost you up, okay?”

Ruke climbs down with no problem.

Once Helga agrees and seems comfortable with the idea of being boosted up, well… he gets to it. It isn’t glamorous, but he’s helping someone, so hey.

Tania blinks as she walks down to the scene “…. wow… ummm… do you need help?”

“Well, she is trapped in a hole, after all,” Arthur explains.

“She might like it down there, and her husband said we didnt have to worry about her…” Tania comments.

“Yes, please, for the love of the Gods, help me.”

Seeing Ruke down there, Tania giggles before moving to tie a rope to her Eidolon and ordering it to pull. The Lizard demon monster pulling with all his strength to help the fat lady up.

With Ruke pushing from below and the lizard moving along, they manage to haul Helga out of the pit, leaving Ruke below to climb out by himself. The rope doesn’t even snap! Lucky!

Ruke groans afterwards, then gears himself back up. “Can the lizard help me up as well?”

The lizard is huffing a bit a little annoyed at having to carry the heavy woman before looking down to Ruke licking his lips. Tania shaking her head as she looked down at him “very well… but he will be hungry from all this hard work” tossing the rope down to Ruke letting her eidolon drag him up.

“I have venison jerky if that would defeat its hunger.” Ruke will climb up using the rope.

He makes it up with the help of the lizard.

“Thank you, I appreciate the help.” He nods to the lizard and to Tania.

Tania smirks at him and gently pets the demonic lizard which curls around her looking at Ruke “Lazarus…. and he did most of the work not I”

Ruke reaches into his bag and offers Lazarus a piece of jerky. He has no idea if the creature will take it, being what it is—an aspect of Tania’s soul.

The thing licks its lips seeing the treat though only with a nod from Tania does it snatch the jerky like a snake would snatch a mouse in one quick movement.
Tania adds, “We should get back to the others…. the lady of course will have to rest without a bed tonight, the rest hold our injured”

“Umm. Wow. Okay. Glad my hand is still there.” Ruke nods, then looks to Helga. “Never fear, you may use my bedroll. I will sleep on the floor. We need a few more days to recover, since our allies are injured.”

“It may take a few bedrolls to properly insulate her, If ear,” Arthur says with an impressive amount of tact.

“Yes, because these bedrolls are so poorly made.” Ruke tries to recover.

If they wait another day, Arthur can do long term treatment again. There’s foodstores and water in the kitchen area, actually, so you don’t need to hit your rations. It’s actually better food than you’d get in rations. A little exploration also reveals an outhouse just out in the woods from the mines, if people don’t want to just go in that pit.

Darius will take the time to think on things

Tania will dote on Darius and the other sick people playing nurse

“Ugh Tania, I said I was…fine, do what you want”

“You’re not fine… your hurting, You know that your eidilon will be just as worried as me when the connection is reestablished”

Arthur proves himself inept.

“perhaps if I set them alight, they shall be like the Phoenix…”

Tania, “What?! no you idiot!”

Nothing disturbs the group, they are left their in their cozy mine, just an hour and some change from civilization. The bandit prisoners are unconscious too.

Sin wakes up, and is groggy

Helga is in the bandit’s kitchen, consuming mass amounts of bread and sausage.

Tania’s Eidilon fights the fat lady over the sausages.

Kierdan Summers shifts a little, his bare chest and its myriad of scars from various and sundry slashes, gashes, cuts, abrasions, and other injuries over his lifetime visible while Arthur works on him. He honestly looks like he lost a war with the knife-fighter’s guild.

“Well, my dear dark elf, are you feeling much better? I am afraid those dogs did a number on you.” Arthur comments.

Sin lifts a hand to her forehead “ugh, where am I?”

“Within the former bandits’ lair, which now belongs to us. At the moment, there is a heated battle going on between a lizard and a fat woman over some sausages.”

Sin shakes her head with a sigh “So I missed it all right? Did you take out Perkins and Simon?”

“I believe your musical friend ran, but the dog master… well, he has joined his pets.”

Darius, “Ugh, Kierdan you look how I felt before”

Sin scowls and shakes her head at Arthur, “Simon’s a cheating bastard. But I suppose as long as he’s far from here it’ll be alright.”

Kierdan Summers mumbles incoherently in his unconsciousness.

Ruke is keeping on watch while the others are recovering.

So another day is spent resting and healing within the safety of the mine.

Arthur Grevane gives Kierdan mouth-to-mouth.

Kierdan Summers sputters and shoves Arthur off of him as he comes back into positive hit points. “Dammit, man! That mustache tickles!”

Kierdan is probably hungry, he hasn’t eaten in two and a half days.

Arthur, “Success!”

Kierdan Summers is still working off of hibernation and adrenaline, and rifles through his pack for a waterskin to wash the taste out of his mouth. He drinks the entire skin’s worth before he realizes how ravenous he is, lifting his scarred arms to place his hand to his forehead. “How long… is everyone all right? Setanta, Sindrathiir, Tania, all of you?”

Sin nods, still moving gingerly. “No one died. Oh, and did anyone check Perkins for his magic ring?”

Kierdan Summers offers Sin a small smile and nod. “Good, I am glad that you are well.” He climbs out of bed, moving to check on Setanta. The horse lifts up from its napping slumber as his master approaches, letting out a snort and a soft whinny. “So they got you in here, too, Setanta. Good lad, good lad.”

Ruke answers Sin, “I’ve collected all the ‘items’ so far. Perkins had a ring on him, yeah. There is also a chest in the other room we haven’t touched. We were waiting for you on that one, Sin.”

Yes, they were waiting for Sin before touching any chests.

Sin nods “Right, the lockbox…” She fishes in her cleavage for something, and takes a small tin key out. “Lifted this before I left. Someone who has some strength in them go open it, it’s where we keep all the goodies. as for Perkin’s ring, it provides minor protection to whomever wears it.”

Kierdan answers Sin, “I can attend to that.”

Sin “you’ll find the merchant’s heirloom jewels in there.”

Kierdan Summers nods, taking the key and moving to find this chest… of jewels.

Tania upon hearing the word jewels perks up a bit and goes to check on the other before gently following with Kierdan, calling her Eidilon who follows after snatching more sausage away from th fat woman.

There is a relatively small metal lockbox in the chamber where they’d pulled Helga from. Relatively small but it must weigh a hundred pounds. It does have a lock, and if he tries to open it, it unlocks easily. The interior contains a bag with a thick gold necklace, set with rubies, emeralsd, and sapphires. Smaller gold rings with emeralds are also in that bag. Another bag contains 250 gold and 500 silver. The lockbox also contains a suspicious rock.

Kierdan Summers glances to Tania, his chest still covered with little more than bandages for his massive chest wound and his collection of scars. “That… what was it that you called him? Idol on? He is quite handy.” Kierdan Summers does, indeed, open the heavy iron strongbox, going through the treasure with Tania.

Arthur, “That rock is rather suspicious.”

Tania smiles “Lazarus… is my Eidilon and yes he is… he is strong and brave like Darius” nodding her head when she saw the jewels she gasped “Oh my, look at all the precious stones, its a nice treasurey….” Giggling as she moved to find a piece of jewelery that matched her bracelet.

Kierdan Summers nods to Arthur, glancing to Tania. “Yes, it is… it’s too bad that the bandits managed to spend some of their stolen treasure, isn’t it?”

Ruke looks over at Sin: “Can you tell us about the rest of this area? We didn’t look around the hideout much, save these few rooms close to us.”

Darius watches over the event with his arms crossed

Tania tries on the necklace happily “The sapphires match my eyes…. but I dunno about the emeralds”

Kierdan Summers lets out a gentle sigh. “Somehow, I doubt that the bandits managed to fence an heirloom gold necklace, encrusted with jewels.”

Tania at that she giggled “well of course not since it is on my neck”removing the necklace with a pout “too garish anyways”

Sin “Yeah, there’s some old mining tunnels along the south. We didn’t really go in there much. There’s veins of metal still exposed there if you want to do some mining, but I know for a fact that there’s some big freaking rats that patrol that area.”

Kierdan Summers gathers the gold and jewels, including the necklace from Tania, and carries it all back to the group. “I assume that the merchant is wanting his heirlooms back.”

A thousand gold for the jewelry, two hundred bonus if you bring his wife back alive.

Ruke, “I am no miner, though it is an honest labor. Perhaps it can be cleared at a later date and made safe for the people.”

Sin “So I guess my debt is paid here… do you intend to make me march back into town with the others?”

Kierdan, “It’s not up to me, but you bled for us. Damn near died for us. Hell, I’ll ride wit’ ya, if nobody else will.”

Arthur, “That you did, that you did. You took the first blows, in fact. Spared us the pain.”

Kierdan Summers flashes Sin a wide, toothy grin, accentuated by the visible scars. “And that dog that got you won’t be botherin’ anybody ever again.”

Ruke “You may do as you please, Sin. Free will is the inherent right granted to us by the Gods. If you want your cut, you’ll have to come with us or give us a time and place where we can meet you with it.”

Sin grimaces for a moment. “I wasn’t expecting anything, but if you’re offering, I guess I can come up with a place to meet. Look, I’m not exactly welcome in town, but there’s a little farmhouse in the woods just near the south gate, not far from that monument statue they have out there. It’s been abandoned for like, a year or more by the looks of it. I’ll set up shop there if you want to bring me my share, or if you need me for any other jobs before I move on. So how are we going to transport everyone back?”

“Very well.” Ruke looks to Kierdan. “Can your horse carry Dingbat? I can manage the dwarf.”

“Aye, Setanta can manage the brute, but I don’t think he’ll want to. That bastard’s the one who cut him.”

Arthur, “We could always drag him, you know.”

Keirdan, “D’you need him alive?”

Ruke, “They need to stand trial for their crimes. It is the town’s decision if that involves death or not.”

Arthur, “We could drag him by the arse. He will probably live.”

Actually, the initial contract didn’t say anything about bringing them back, just the jewels and proof they were defeated. However, it’s entirely possible there’s a bounty on them.

Kierdan, “Then draggin’ him is a bad idea, by the chest or the arse.”

“If you prefer to take the dwarf, Kierdan, you may. Regardless, we should head into town and report the guard’s body we found. Its only a hour’s hike.”

Kierdan responds to Ruke, “That’s fine, he didn’t hurt Setanta, just me. My lad might throw ‘im, but he won’t trample him without my say so.”

Sin “I have a feeling we’ll be slow going anyway, I can barely stagger at the moment, and Fatty Fatfat over there looks like she’ll have to rest a lot.”

It’s a little over two hour’s hike for the group as they stand. Helga is heavily encumbered just by virtue of being Helga, and Sin can onyl take a move action each round, so moves at half speed.

“Consider it exercise, then!” Arthur twirls his cane once more!

Kierdan Summers blinks at the oversize woman as he spots her through the doorway. "Hello… who’s this? A prisoner of the bandits? If it were up to me, the lady would ride Setanta and we’d carry, drag, lead, whatever the prisoners.”

Ruke, “The prisoners haven’t woken yet and we need to get them to town without any hinderance. I can carry one, the other will have to be on the back of the horse or carried by someone else. I imagine it wouldn’t be too hard for someone to ride on the horse with the captive. Everyone else will have to walk. Its only a hour away… well at our rate probably two hours, but it’ll be easy going.”

“We can try slingin’ the dwarf over Setanta’s hindquarters. I’ll make sure he doesn’t fall down too many times.” Kierdan answers.

Ruke, “Alright, then that’ll work.”

Kierdan, “We ready ta head on out, then?”

Ruke nods.

Darius nods.

Arthur, “Indeed, I think we are!”

Kierdan Summers nods as well, moving to the kitchen to retrieve Helga. “My lady, if you will accompany me, my fine steed and I are waitin’ to escort you back to town.”

Helga nods to Kierdan “Oh yes, it is time to go? Goody! I can’t wait to get back to town to have a decent meal.” She waddles after Kierdan. So, they head off to town, prisoners and fat princess in tow?

Kierdan Summers helps Helga into Setanta’s saddle, strapping her in as best he can before he finishes dressing and grabs a loaf of bread from the kitchen, splitting it with the merchant’s wife.

It takes two hours, and they manage to leave at mid morning, well before noon. It’ll be around noon by the time they approach town, though a light drizzle starts during the final third of their journey, taking some of the heat off. As they are walking through the farmer’s fields within sight of the gates, they can see the field where they found the half of a body after initially setting out. The fields look disturbed, as if ruptured by great furrows.

Darius hefts his blade summoning his Eidolon

“Well, this seems slightly ominous…” Arthur says.

Kierdan adds, “Slightly?”

Ruke withdraws his greatsword, but keeps it pointed down at the ground. “Just be on your guard, I can see the gates from here.”

Kierdan Summers reaches for his warhammer and shield, still cautious about the weak spot in his armor that the dwarf exploited. His weapon is, once more, tied to his wrist for safety.

They manage to get past the fields without disturbance, but as they approach the gates, there’s a crowd of farmers pestering the guards. When they near, some of them can be heard to be crying out, “Ate my poor bessie just last night!” “Damn yer cow jenkins, my wife’s been missin’ fer three days now!” The guards, so busy with the commotion, just wave the group past without checking them. Prisoners and all.

Ruke sheaths his weapon once they’re at town. He takes an interested look at the farmers, but he won’t say anything outloud.

Notably at the gates, Sin leaves and moves to skulk around the city walls toward the farm she’d told them of.

Kierdan Summers also sheathes his weapon in town, chatting up Helga. “Aren’t you glad to be home, m’lady?”

“Take care, Sin.” Ruke nods to the drow as she leaves. He’ll start leading the group towards the main guard post.

Kierdan Summers nods goodbye to the drow as well, offering her a friendly smile and a wink as he goes before he checks his equipment for anything missing once she’s out of sight.

“Well, now. A thought…” from the alchemist. “Perhaps we should all invest in healing items while we are in town?”

Kierdan, “Perhaps, once we’re all paid.”

The guard garrison has an office out front. Two guards stand outside the place, and watch when the group comes up with those prisoners. “And just what do we have here?” One approaches the group, looking over the dwarf and dingbat.

“This is a bandit leader and his associate that was giving the local area some trouble. We’re here to turn them in.” Ruke answers.

The guard nods “Ah yeah, the drow bitch told us about them. Right, let’s get them unloaded…” The other guard steps inside, then shortly thereafter three more come out to secure the prisoners. They return the rope and the manacles to the party. “I suppose you’ll be wanting the reward for ‘em… It’ll be a hundred fifty gold total for bringing ’em in alive.”

“I’m sure everyone will find that acceptable?” Ruke asks the others. He isn’t about to haggle for more, but hey, this might be how some of the others made their living.

Kierdan Summers takes a quick glance around for any reward posters.

There’s none posted outside.

Kierdan, “One-fifty? Ain’t hardly a pittance for the trouble that they caused, but it’s better than an axe in my chest.”

They hand over a hundred fifty gold, to go with the rest of what the group has found.

And with that, the group went to arrange a meeting with Callos, to return the jewels and his wife.

View
The Adventure Begins (Session 3)
In which the PCs confront the bandits in their lair.

So when last we left, the group had come to the abandoned mine in the foothills, at which point, someone let the dogs out. After a vicious fight, the party has two members unconscious, has one unconscious stabilized prisoner, one who has been decapitated most messily, and a few dogs that have been rendered to kibbles and bits. A lone bard fled into the mine, which even from ehre can be seen to be lit by lanterns.

“Well,” Arthur says. “What shall we do now?”

Tania just walks over to the sleeping Kierdan to gently shake him awake

Kierdan Summers looks up at Tania as she shakes him awake, blinking. “Am I dreamin’?”

Darius grunts.

Tania scowls at him “you fell asleep during the battle! a bard got the better of you” shaking her head before dashing off to Ruke.

Ruke likely needs medical attention.

Darius, “No … You were sleeping after that bard cast a spell on you. Tania you remember that potion?”

Ruke continues being unconscious.

“Thats what I said….. dammit… I only have one of these” Tania says, removing a small vial from her pocket and sitting next to Ruke before blushing a bit as she has to force him to drink.

Kierdan Summers gets to his feet, grogginess and confusion fading away before he turns toward Setanta, whistling for the horse. The steed walks toward his cavalier slowly, hesitant from his severe wounds. “Dammit, Setanta…”

“Do we have any spare healing for our drow?” Grevane asks from where he is. “Considering that she did take the hit for us, after all.”

At least the paladin regains consciousness. But how long can they assume that they’re safe out there?

Tania looks over the paladin “Please tell me you know healing magic”

The human starts coughing after he’s drunk the potion with the help of Tania. He opens his eyes, vision a little blurry until he adjusts. He looks up at her: “Thank you, m’lady. I owe you a debt…” He wipes his mouth off with the back of his hand, before shaking his head. “Alas, healing magic is something that I understand the theory of, but the Gods have not yet blessed me with its power.” He groans, then forces him to stand up.

Tania pouts gently before moving to help him “Darius… can you hold him steady? The drow girl got wounded as well I believe she is stable but…. I only had the one potion”

Kierdan Summers leads the injured, hesitant horse toward the rest of the group, looking to Ruke. “You all right, Ser Vasser? You got hit pretty hard, as did Sindrathiir.”

The paladin is wobbly on his feet, though he takes the time to pick up his greatsword and sheath it. He holds his hand on his head where he got hit, looking at Summers: “I’m still pretty beat up. Looks like your horse is too…” Noticing that one of the bandits is still alive (but unconscious), he’ll approach the fallen man and shackle his arms behind his back with manacles.

“Aye… that fat bastard tore into my poor Setanta. Got what he deserved.”

Tania moves to the side looking around “….. This isnt the safest place for us to be, what if there are more?”

“There probably are, I fear,” the alchemist approaches the others. “We can attempt to hit them hard now, or retreat, regroup, and strike again”

Tania turns to Arthur thinking as she looked at him “…. do you have any curatives? you’re an alchemist right?”
Kierdan, “I ain’t tryin’ ta bark orders, but we’ve one down, two barely standin’. We ain’t in any condition to run into a total unknown of a cave and root around for gods know how many bandits.”

“I leave that decision up to you all. If you’re physically well-off enough to venture in after the bandits, I’ll do what I can to aid you. If you think retreat is the best option, we can follow that route.” Ruke passed the decision on.

“I-I-I can summon…. my guardian. If you think that will help,” Tania offered

Ruke takes the time to pat down Dingbat and remove all weapons and items from him. Likewise, the deadguy will get a pat down. “You magic users can summon creatures to your aid, correct? Maybe you all could summon enough to turn the tides in our favor.”

Tania nods as she looks to Darius “I think we better…. just to protect them”

“And I am sorry, my dear girl, but my curatives… specially balanced, might not work the same way on other people. A pity, really.”

Kierdan Summers shakes his head. “I’m not plannin’ on buryin’ any of you today. We got too close ta puttin’ Sin in the ground as it is. If you’re all hell to leather on goin’ into the cave, then I’ll watch your back, but I ain’t votin’ for it.”

The alchemist suggests, “We could always work strategically. For example, with minor effort, we could burn this part of the forest down. That might panic the bandits.”

Ruke discovers: A great axe, A greatclub, each man wears a suit of scale mail. Oslo has a pouch with 5 sp and 4 cp, as well as a small brass whistle. Dingbat has a flask of strong liqour in one pocket. The flask is silver, and likely worth some money.

“I am not ‘stealing’ any of this, I am merely acquisitioning the prisoner’s belongings for us on the behalf of the people for the services we are performing for them.” … Ruke loots all that crap and becomes the party’s loot mule for the time being.

Darius, “So, Should we summon our…aspects? Tania?”

Tania takes a few steps back from the group before beginning to chant, the various tattoos on her body glowing as she begins to go over the summonging. Drowning out all the other noise before a circle appears and she calls out this demonic looking lizard with long neck and sharp fangs eyes just pools of fire. The symbol across her chest alighting permenantly and appearly on the eidilon.

Kierdan Summers looks visibly started at the thing. “The hell’s that?”

“My proposal would be to have Tania and Darius take the lead with their summoning creatures, with Kierdan and Arthur providing support. I can carry Sin. If we leave, the bandits will abandon this place. I’m not sure if burning the forest down would be doing the people any favors.” Ruke says all of this with his back turned, and when he turns around, he stares at Tania’s new creature uneasily.

“Well…” Arthur adjusts his top hat! “My bombs are at their most useful when, well, friendly targets are not directly within the line of fire. I have enough ingredients for four more today, I believe…”

Darius grasps his fist as a drop of blood falls to the ground forming runic symbols on the ground as light shines from the sky and an angelic beauty that looks very much like a mature Tania in Fullplate graces you all with her presence

Tania just smiles at the creature petting it gently as it curls around her “This… is my eidolon. he is my summon, its alright… he is fierce but would bite anyone I do not ask him to. I would be honored to have him help”

Darius hands his Eidolon the Glaive from his back

“Strange, strange magic.” That uncomfortable look lingers on Ruke’s face some, though he seems a little more at ease with the presence of Darius’ angelic eidolon. “If these… creatures are associates of yours, then I welcome them both.” Ruke will retrieve Sin’s body—being gentle with her.

Kierdan Summers looks a lot more comfortable with the angel. He turns to Setanta, softly instructing the horse to remain at the mouth of the cave and defend himself as best he can.

Tania giggles at that “Eidolons… arn’t just creatures… its hard to explain, but basically they are apart of the summoners soul”

Arthur, “Splitting your soul? Holy mercy, good woman!”

“Its similar to a mage with their familiar… do not be alarmed, we are alright and so are they”

Kierdan Summers gives the eidolons another glance. If those are parts of the summoners’ souls, then he’d misjudged the two of them, and quite badly.

Darius, “Yes, It is a full commitment, We care for each other and defend each other when in need”

A comparison to a familiar puts Ruke more at ease. “Very well, we will be counting on your eidolons alongside your… owls and dogs and the like.”

Tania nods before whispering to the creature, it unwraps from her and strides off, the large (for a lizard) creature moving ahead of her "it is your choice to press on… but the paladin shall have to stay close.

“Yes we will have to be most careful”, Darius says.

Ruke, “Even wounded, I want to carry my weight. In that regard, I’ll stay in the back and I’ll ensure that our prisoner doesn’t escape and that Sindrathiir remains safe.”

Darius begins drawing runes on both his Eidolon and his forehead to seal the connection as well as cast Mage armor upon her

Sin lays there, doing her impression of a beached whale. Wherever ruke puts her that is.

Kierdan Summers grips his warhammer as Setanta moves to wait at the mouth of the cave. “We’ve got some bandits to take down, then.”

Arthur_Grevane fumbles around with his ingredients, getting them ready for the upcoming fight. “I suppose we do, then.”

Ruke will carry Sin over one of his shoulders if possible unless she weighs as much as a beached whale.

She’s six foot, 124 lbs. Plus like 30 lbs of gear.

Kierdan Summers moves off into the forest, to the wounded dog. If nobody stops him, he’ll coup de grace it.

Darius shoulders his Grimoire and points at the cave, I guess we will move forward… I think they will ambush us..I dunno

Ruke will be pre-occupied trying to figure out how to carry the looted gear, the prisoner, and Sin. It is like the chicken feed, chicken, and fox over a river once at a time riddle. His pre-occupation means he won’t really notice the fate of the unconcious dog.

“You could pile them together.” Arthur suggests!

“Hmmm.” Ruke thinks further on it with Arthur’s suggestion.

Kierdan Summers lifts his warhammer before he brings it down on the dog’s skull with a sickening, sucking crunch, caving in the animal’s entire head in a spray of blood and brains. Dead, dead, dead.

There’s a dull THWACK as Kierdan puts down old yeller. PETA will not be pleased.

Darius grunts trying to make his wounds appear worse than they actually are

Tania thought on it for a moment “…. why doesn’t the paladin stay with the drow? you are both too weak to fight… I shall make a summon to help guard you while you hide in the forest” when Darius grunts though her attention goes immediatly to him as she looks over his wounds gingerly touching his arm “… are you alright?”

Kierdan Summers emerges from the underbrush a few moments later, his armored coat spattered with blood, wiping the head of his hammer clean with a scrap of cloth. “Setanta can guard you too, Ser. He’s a smart horse, or ya can use him ta get away if ya need to.”

Darius makes innocent eyes at Tania as he tries to shrug, “He got a good hit in earlier is all..Im fine for at least one more fight, I’m strong, remember”

Tania gently takes his arm at that looking over the wounds “….too strong for your own good, your going to get hurt… dont worry ill help make sure you all better when we get back”

“Hm. Very well. You both make good points.” The paladin agrees. He’ll hunker down outside with the horse, the unconcious prisoner, and the unconcious rogue.

“Well, then!” and with a twirl of Arthur’s cane… “Shall we? We should determine a strategy before we burn the cave down, of course.”

Kierdan, “Artie, we got so many unknowns here that even the unknowns have unknowns. Don’t think we’re gonna make a more elegant plan than “go in with our eyes peeled and come out with bodies”… preferably the bandits’ bodies.”

Tania, “Let the eidolons go first, if they are hurt it is not permanent to them”

Arthur, “True, we can spare parts of people’s souls. Well, shall we, then?”

Tania, “Kierdan and darius can follow, I will cover the back with the alchemist”

Darius nods taking thier advice

Ruke, “Good luck and be careful, everyone. May the Gods be with you.”

Kierdan, “Keep an eye on my horse. If anythin’ dangerous happens, mount up and run back ta town and we’ll meet ya there.”

“I will take care of your horse, you have my promise on that.”

The mouth of the mine yawns before them. It varies from ten to fifteen feet across in places, braced with wooden beams that have seen better days. Every twenty feet, an oil lamp flickers from a hook on one side or the other. A pungent, moist mildewy smell drifts from within.

Kierdan Summers lets the eidolons go first, keeping a grip on his weapon and shield, giving a glance to Arthur. “Throwing bombs around in here might not be wise, unless we’re intending to collapse the cave on these assholes.”

“That might be an idea, you know.” Arthur says. “Imagine! The ultimate deterrent!”

Tania moves forward with her eidolon slithering ahead not seeming to care anymore neither worrying or stuttering. Just deadly calm.

Kierdan, “Keep it in the back of your head. No sense in getting us killed in the collapse.”

Darius follows right with Tania his angelic aspect keeping pace with the demonic beast

From the cave entrance, the eidolon can see that it proceeds generally north-east into the hillside, at a very gradual downward slope, until it opens into a larger chamber with a few wooden chairs and tables against the walls.

Indeed, the alchemist keeps back, waiting for the first (or second) sign of danger!

The first room appears empty. The walls are hewn rock, reinforced with thick timbers, while the floor is a mix of mud and gravel, making for uneven footing at best. The table contains an old loaf of bread and some playing cards, and three daggers jut out of the tabletop, one of which pins a crude sketch of two women doing something completely inappropriate. The northern tunnel is broad, some fifteen feet across, and slopes somewhat upward. It’s well lit. Tunnels also lead to the south and east, though these are dark and unlit, save for the occasional glow of a strange, luminescent moss upon the damp stone walls. As the eidolons enter that first chamber, they can hear the distant growl and bark of dogs drifting down from the north, as well as gruff voices. The echo of the stones distorts them to the point where they are unintelligible. To the south, only the steady drip of water can be heard.

Darius` whispers to Tania, “Which way?"

Tania stops as she watches the reptilian eidolon turn its head to the north letting out a low hiss baring fangs which extend out as it hisses. Tania nodding “A sign of trouble… Kierdan prepare your weapon, you too Darius. It is in the north”

“Way ahead of you, lady.”

Arthur Grevane hustles up to them. “Trouble, eh? Oh, more dogs.” he says fairly quietly.

Tania moves to take one of the oil lanterns and turn it off before gently pouring the oil on the other southern tunnel entrance “Alchemist… we can light this if they try to rush from behind”

The mustachioed man grins! Maybe this was a bad idea.

Darius nods hefting his blade

Tania, “dont go into any open areas… they could flank us…. keep the fights in the tunnels”

Kierdan Summers gives his hammer a spin. “I still owe ’em for Setanta and Sindrathiir.”

Darius, “He is right, They were quite mean to the … Drow”

Tania uses the grease spell to get the other entrance “… alright then, you know the formation, eidolons, darius and the knight. Then me and the alchemist”

And so they have a minute before the grease dissipates, but it should cover things for now. Do they advance quietly at all? or just march up?

Tania just is quiet letting the boys march up if they wish to

The upward slope opens into a massive chamber. The ceiling is high and has a long forgotten block and tackle supporting a platform that has seen better days. The block and tackle has ropes that tether to hooks near to the southern entrance, where you’re coming from. In the center of the room, a deep pit is cut into the stone floor. It’s ten foot deep at the near end, fifteen foot at the far end, though this is from a combination of factors, including the fact that the floor of the main chamber slopes upward toward the far end. There’s a fifteen foot high ledge in the north-west corner, upon which stand two archers, an elven man and an elven woman. Across the pit to the right, a brutal looking dwarf carrying two vicious looking dwarven waraxes stands, and before him, two trained dogs much like the ones from outside lift their heads to bark at the group. Near to the dwarf, the bard from earlier stands, hands near his lute. “Here they come boss…” he murmurs to the dwarf.

There’s a ladder visible on the north-east wall of the lower pit.

Kierdan Summers moves cautiously, but with his armor and shield, stealth is likely out of the question. As he sees the archers, he hisses, rasping, “Archers, watch yourselves.”

Grevane loads his crossbow first, then!

As the dogs start barking at them the repitillian monster opens baring its fangs with a hiss extending its neck which is longer then it once was now looking like it could reach a bit of a distance like a snake. Tania staying in the back “we shouldn’t fight them in the open especailly with the archers”

The archers nock arrows, readying them to fire.

Darius, “Okay, Then…do we move back?”

Kierdan, “Fall back. Now.”

Tania moves back

“Good idea, my good man.” he says, and backs up a bit!

The archers hold their fire as the group retreats, but the dwarf’s laughter echoes down the hall.

Kierdan Summers gives Arthur a glance. “How good of a shot are you with that thing?”

“I would not call it my specialty, unfortunately.” Arthur says. “Do you think that one of the other passageways might help us reach them from behind?”
Kierdan, “… you got a lot of bolts? Could take a shot in the dark, if you’re not gonna run out of arrows anytime soon.”

Tania takes out her own cross bow and loads it quickly “Its too much of a chance, they could catch us from behind or we could get lost. Alchemist, I can cover you long range. Your bomb might be useful here”

“Well, we can try, I suppose…” Arthur moves up by the eidolons. “unfortunately, my bombs move as far as I throw them. Now, let’s see… adjust for range, wind speed…” and 90’ range on the crossbow!

Darius is not sure what to do

Kierdan Summers moves forward, intending to cover the alchemist with his shield while the man reloads.

Tania shares a smile with her Eidolon as they cover the alchemist, she readying her crossbow.

And so, with a roomful of people to shoot, Arthur aims at the pretty elf girl.

As Arthur lines up his shot, the elves let loose, firing at him. Sunamal fires first. And his arrow skitters off into the dark.

Kierdan Summers holds his action for now, as to not interfere with the alchemist’s shot.

The elven woman fires at Arthur then. And misses. THEN Arthur critically hits Carrie. She’s struck in the throat and goes down, bleeding. Perkins growls, “a’ight, this is silly.” If you haven’t rolled initiative yet, do so.

“An elf for an elf, then! if that is the old saying, of course…”

At the top of the second round, the other elf fires at Arthur again. The arrow streaks toward him, and likely looks very painful.

This time it hits him right in the top hat! But oddly, Arthur is still standing. “Well, I must say, that one hurt quite a bit.” he says. Youch!

Tania moves infront to keep Arthur covered from more attacks before aiming carefully and letting loose her bolts unto the other archerer

Sadly she misses, because her eidolon is in the way of a clear shot.

Grevane sneaks his way back before loading! Well, at least he’s got that much sense!

The elf chick stabilizes. Simon begins to sing a song of death and destruction, inspiring his bandit friends. And their dogs, apparently. Perkins advances across the room, waraxes in hand. “If you wanna do something right, you gotta do it yourself.”

Darius mentally instructs his eidolon to ready an attack on Perkins but he himself simply full defenses

One of the dogs races in, triggering an attack of opportunity from the reach weapon. The dog yipes as it is struck, then goes down bleeding. Then the other moves into position. can go ahead and take the reach attack for the other one now.

The Angelic creature takes the glaive almost picking the dog up and cutting into it with a graceful strike

Almost in coordination the demonic creatures head lashes out like a wicked snake. There’s a yipe as the dog is bitten by the other eidolon, but still stands, albeit staggering.

Grevane sneaks his way back before grabbing a vial of his extra-special extract – Cure Light Wounds. You know, he really should make some that works for somebody else sometime! “I’ll be right back in the fray, good chaps! Just give me one moment…”

Inspired by the bard’s music, the elven man readies his bow, then fires a shot toward Tania.

Tania nearly gets hot with that reloading her crossbow, a glare and glow in her eyes as she coldly finds her target before firing at the elf.

Her aim is thrown off having to fire through the eidolon.

Kierdan Summers steps up behind the eidolon, looking amongst his group. “All right, all of you, keep it loose. We move as a unit, back and forth, like waves on a beach. Pick up your feet and work together.”

The bard continues his performance, which can be heard even as he moves down the hall

Tania, “Someone silence that bard!”

The houndskeeper moves up, triggering that readied attack now. The dwarf doesn’t even need to dodge Tania’s eidolon as the bite just FAILS. Likewise, the other eidolon just bricks. The dwarf then raises one of his waraxes, bringing it down toward the demonic eidolon. And… just misses himself. Darius!

Darius spins his hands around and fires off an acid splash, the eidolon wishes to switch places with Kierdan

He’d have been worried, if that acid splash hadn’t been so sad.

Kierdan Summers moves up to fill the gap that angel!Tania leaves behind, giving the dwarf a grin behind his wooden shield. “Don’t even think about it, cupcake.”

The blade grazes off of the dwarf’s armor. And then the dog tries to maul Kierdan. As the dog’s bite fails, it’s Arthur’s turn.

Well! Arthur could reload his crossbow right now, or… he could pull out a bomb! And that’s what he does, quickly filling a metal sphere and tossing it right at the dwarf and dog! it is aimed just over their heads to the grid intersection riiiight behing dog and dwarf. Unless he throws short, it will miss his friends! And unless he throws far, the splash damage should hit both bad

Kierdan Summers repels the dog’s gnashing fangs with his shield as he moves into position, gliding into place with his hammer ready.

The houndmaster dodges a bit of the blast of fire, though the hound isn’t so lucky, taking the brunt and collapsing, dying. The archer readies an arrow, then fires a shot over the melee, aiming for the rear ranks.

Tania gently strokes a hand down the cavalier’s back mutter words of magic to protect the man from all chaotic beings. Her demonic aspect roaring before moving to chomp down on the nice looking dwarf snack before it.

The dwarf braces himself as the eidolon bites into his leathery armor.

Kierdan Summers steps forward onto the corpse of the dog as he pivots, bringing his hammer around to whack at the dwarf’s big, bearded head.
Darius is out.

Kierdan’s hammer swishes through the air, though it does stir the dwarf’s beard. The bard’s singing stops for now. The houndkeeper curses “Damned boy needs to keep singin’. Alright, time to put you fellows down.” He then begins to wail on Kierdan, bringing both of those axes to bear on the cavalier.

Darius` bleeds.

Kierdan Summers evades one axe with his shield, leaving him wide open to take the other across his chest in a massive stroke. He lets out a wail of pain as he falls atop the dog, his hammer clattering to the cave floor, still tied to his wrist.

With little else to do before they all get in trouble, Arthur quickly reloads his crossbow! “infernal contraption of springs and levers!”

Tania, “god dammit if we survive this you are getting a lighter weapon!”

Are you sure right now you want to blow a round reloading a crossbow?

Well! The situation looks like it may be dire! S o much so that Arthur quickly assembles another bomb, packing ingredients and screwing it tight before throwing underhand just behind the dwarf, trying to catch him again!

And he takes the full brunt of it this time. You still have a move left.

Arthur moves himself a bit, keeping out of immediate archer range some more!

The archer takes an unbuffed pot shot at Tania. But plants an arrow squarely inthe floor.

Tania quickly casts a shield on herself and runs back with the alchemist. Her Eidolon stays to fight off the dwarf.

Tania’s eidolon bites the dwarf, managing to land a hit on him. The dwarf still stands, though he is greviously wounded. He roars in aggravation.

The eidolon just seems to chuckle and lick its lips now having a taste of the yummy dwarf.

The paladin heard combat noises, so… bravely or stupidly, he’s advancing upwards to see if he can provide aid…or if it’s too late and he should get out of there with the drow.

That bard comes into view around the corner on the ledge. The houndsmaster double axes Tania’s eidolon, missing both times.

Tania, “Ruke! oh thank goodness… we are getting the leader but darius and the cavalier are unconcious! I dont even know if they are alive… you have to secure them”

The paladin looks to Tania, then nods. “I can ensure their survival once I’ve reached them… how many enemies are still out there?”

“3, one archer, one bard and the leader. the leader is the biggest threat right now, my eidolon is holding him off… and the alchemist as well… his bombs are more helpful right now”

Arthur reloads his crossbow now.

The archer up top holds his fire.

Tania moves up and casts grease over top the leaders head to hopefully get him to trip up for her eidolon to strike.

Perkins slips and falls

With that the Eidolon moves to munch on the nice fallen dwarf.

But the dwarf’s just too damn tough.

Ruke takes a double move action there. He grips the hilt of his greatsword in one hand and his other hand begins to glow with a white light.

The bard moves to the female elf, then kneels near her. He sings softly to her, and she awakens, her wounds closing. The bard then nods to the elven archer, who undelays, and shoots the houndmaster in the back. The bard calls out “We surrender, just let us three out..”

“Throw down all your weapons, good sir! And move far, far away from them!”:

The houndmaster slumps forward, collapsing to the ground. The bard shouts back “No, we keep our weapons. You’re wounded, so are we, but we can probably make your lives hell trying to get up here. All we want to do is take what we have on us now and leave.”

“Dammit man let them go so we can heal our own” Tania curses and just drops her crossbow going to Darius immediatly “pleasedontbedeadpleasedontbedead”

Ruke is wounded big time already, and there are innocents here, so… he makes the tough call and agrees. “Fine, you’ve got your deal, but you never show your faces around this town again—or you will be caught and tried for your crimes as bandits.” The paladin will bend down and touch his hand across Darius wounds. His hand glows briefly and the man becomes stabilized.

Grevane doesn’t shoot at them, but… well! “Indeed. We may not trust you terribly much at the moment, but the day would end far better without any more bloodshed.”

“He’ll live,” Ruke whispers to Tania.

Simon nods “The asshole you want is right there.” He points to the dwarf. “You can save him for trail if you act swiftly.” The archers toss a rope ladder down the ledge, and begin to climb down.

The paladin will walk up to the fallen dwarf and stabalize him as well. He’ll take out rope, then begin to bind the dwarves arms and feet in it.

Tania nearly tears up when she pauses even her breath stops while Darius gets stabalized. She doesnt say a word looking to Ruke, all the gratitude is in her eyes before she just hugs the larger man careful not to hurt his wounds.

Darius is stabilized

The Eidolon looks very tempted to eat the dwarf even testing its jaw size around the body.

Ruke will smile gently and return the chaste gesture to Tania. “Watch over him, while I check on Kierdan and the dwarf.” The paladin lets the archers pass, though he takes a moment to look at each of them so he might be able to recognize their faces again.

Tania nods and just watches the archers go by saying nothing.

When the archers come up, Ruke looks at them. “I’m going to follow you outside, but only to make sure you don’t take the horse, our ally, and the other prisoner. Are you okay with these terms?”

“Go on, go on, find your way out of here.” Arthur says, taking another one of his extracts. “I think… with suitable blood and tissue samples, perhaps I could develop a better formula. One with a wider range of use…”

As they pass Ruke, Simon speaks softly as an aside, “The emissary from Worm Keep is in the next room, as is the prisoner. It’s unlikely he’ll fight, but you never know with his sort. I suggest you get your lot recovered and ready. There’s some healers kits up in the bedroom up top. Do what you will, just let us out of here.”

“Very well, thank you for the information. May the Gods have mercy on your souls.” Ruke will escort the bandits out, then let them go on their merry way.

“Whatever, just not worth dying for a cause you don’t give a shit about.”

Kierdan Summers has stopped bleeding, but he still looks to be in a bad way, laying atop the body of a dead hound, his warhammer still tied to his wrist. It looks like the axe went between two plates of his armored coat.

“Is the Emissary the one that came to Perkins with the deal? Can you tell us anything more about this Worm Keep?”

Tania just runs to go get the healing kits

Simon nods “Yeah well, not much. None of the others know about it, but I heard a story once. There was a time back millenia ago when the first necromancer was honing his arts, the place he holed up to practice in was called Worm Keep. It was supposedly just stories, but this fellow Thule… the symbol on his cloak looks a lot like those old stories tell.”

“Hmm…” Ruke doesn’t like the sound of that, but there is work to be done. “Very well. You’re free to go now.”

Simon nods, and the three archers leave peacefully. Tania can climb up to the ledge up the rope they left if she wants

Tania does so.

“Arthur, can you watch everyone in here while I bring in Dingbat and Sin? I don’t want them outside alone.”

“Indeed, I can do that. He nods! "Now… we need to regroup. Is everybody still alive?’

Up top, the ledge leads to two rooms, The one to the west has a few bunk beds and several chests.

Tania begins to loot! for the healing kits….

It will take a while for her to do so. does she do a thorough search of the room? If so, make a perception check.

“Everyone is alive. We must be cautious if the emissary is still here with a prisoner…”

Everyone else has a few minute to catch a breather there while they wait, enough time to move bodies around etc.

Ruke will go outside and bring in Dingbat and Sin.

“Indeed. Shall we map the place out?”

Darius feels like crap.

Sin, Kierdan, and Darius will more or less be rested against a wall next to each other. Ruke takes the manacles off of Dingbat and places them on Perkins. He’ll also loot Perkins, remove weapons, armor, etc. To Arthur, he nods. “Something like that, yes. We’ll need to see if we can get our allies back up after Tania retrieves those kits.”

Dingbat gets tied up with rope.

Within the bedroom, Tania discovers: 60 arrows, chests containing spare sets of clothing, 4 daggers, 2 short swords, A bag with 120 gp. Another bag with 140 sp. Enough healing kits to garnish 20 uses from. A glass vial with a strange, sparkling orange potion within it. A leather scrollcase. And hidden under a loose stone near one of the beds she finds a golden bracelet set with small sapphires.

Grevane stands over both captives, since he DID load that crossbow!

Tania loots the organ vial, healing kits…. and the gold bracelet mostly because that was pretty and sapphires matched her eyes. Slipping it on before moving to descend back with the healing kits “Someone catch these!”

On Perkins, Ruke discovers a chain shirt fitted for a dwarven male. Two dwarven waraxes, a small silver ring with two onyxes set upon it. a bag of dog treats, and a small brass whistle.

Ruke packs it all up with the other gear he’s taken already. Upon hearing Tania, he’ll move over to the ladder to assist her.

Tania gently passes a few down to Ruke slipping a couple in her bags. Ever so carfully wrapping the vial and putting it in before descending “This is all I found that could heal… and this strange liquid… the alchemist could tell us what it is”

“Aye, I imagine that is his realm of expertise. Good job on finding all this.” Ruke takes the offered supplies, nodding in gratitude to Tania.

“there is a bunch of other stuff up there…. I shall go get the rest of it” moving back up the rope sighing at all this climbing she has to do.

Ruke, “Be careful.” He’ll return to Arthur! “Are you any good with first aid?” He asks the alchemist. amd indiciates the healing kits he’s brought back.

“Well… I suppose I can give it a try, indeed!” though his heal rating is 5… it’s level 1, and all.

If you felt like it you could camp in the bandit’s old room, everyone except the horse. except wait, there’s actually a block and tackle with a moveable mining platform, so if you REALLY wanted to, you could probably get the horse up there too

Tania begins sorting the loot between weapons, gold, and stuff they could sell. Keeping the bracelet before moving to the next room to see what was in there so she could sort it all out by the time they got back.

Okay, so Ruke will try and carefully get all the unconcious party members up to that room with the beds and place them there. So, Arthur can have a little first aid-station there more or less. The prisoners will get brought up as well.

A long, broad room has cooking fires set up, as well as the remnants of breakfast on one table. A map lies on one table, depicting crude sketches of the areas around the city, along with little Xs corresponding to where caravans were raided. There are barrels and boxes of foodstuffs most places, along with a freshly butchered ham. A heavy crossbow lies on one table, along with ten quarrels.

When he’s done with all that, he tries to lead the horse in with the ‘Come’ trick.

The horse follows Ruke inside, and along the uneven, mud and gravel ground, into the oil lit mine.

“Good horsey. Your owner will be happy to see you tomorrow, Setanta.”

Tania takes the quarrels and heavy crossbow dragging them back to the bed room and putting them with the weapons before sighing “that’s everything up here so far… there’s even some food and cooking utensils… we wont need to move much at all from here”

“That is good news.”

Ideally, Arthur would do long term care for everyone in the party. And we’d keep watches out for the Emissary. If he pops out into that main area, maybe have Arthur and Tania snipe him with crossbows and use the Eidolon again or something

The party rests for 8 hours. Arthur inspects the potion. It’s a potion of cure light wounds.

Darius staggers up looking at the arrow in his stomach

“We now have a potion of Cure Light Wounds” After checking with them, he will take time to replenish his extracts and mutagen and bomb stuff!

“What…What happened?” Darius seems confused.

Sin remains unconscous.

“We may want to consider giving it to Kierdan, he took a rough beating…” Ruke looks over at Darius, “Ah, well…seems we all lived! That’s great, jolly news. The bad new is we had to let three of the bandits go and I think there is a necromancer down here or something like that.”

So after eight hours, people heal up a bit, and Sin and Kierdan are still unconscious.

Tania immediately rushes Darius when she sees he’s awake and hugs him tightly just staying with him and making sure he rests. Her Eidolon…. is busy devoruing wolf bodies.

Ruke, “Arthur, would you come with me to check out the rest of the cave? I think we should spend a day or so more here until Sin and Kierdan are well enough off to ride.”

Darius pets her head and winces when he is tackled but doesn’t complain

Ruke smiles at seeing Tania and Darius, and looks ready to give them a little space for a bit.

“If you are going to Adventure, be careful … Ouch, Tania, Im alright…See, only a flesh wound”

Tania leans into his touch sniffling a bit “You’re an idiot! I told you that you were going to get hurt! that is not a flesh wound! you nearly died!”

Grevane, “Nobody is an idiot. We survived, after all./”

The mine is actually a pretty cozy place all in all. One could probably camp out there for months at a time.

Ruke will (carefully) explore the rest of the place—mostly to see if there is anything else of note to find.

“Heh, No, she’s right about this, As a bloodborn magic-user, I really shouldn’t be on the battlefield, but I’m too stubborn … Im sorry i scared you Tania. It’s good to hear everyone made it through…But what now?”

Tania sniffles more rubbing her eyes “idiot… idiot…. idiot…” she just mutters before leaning on him

Ruke finds a chamber with another pit. The chamber itself is cleaner than the previous one, containing a metal lockbox in one corner. The pit seems to have someone within it, as evidenced from the soft sobbing. A niche in one side of the mine’s uneven wall seems to contain a tomb of some sort, complete with headstone.

“Hello?” Ruke cautiously approaches the pit with sobbing in it.

Darius twitches as he is still tender but let her curse him into oblivion and holds Tania in his currently weak arms

As Ruke approaches the pit, he can see a ponderous woman in her middling thirties. She has to be human, and is dressed in fineries suitable for an upper middle class status. She’s five foot at the most, and EASILY three hundred fifty pounds or more.

Ruke, “By the Gods…”

When Ruke calls out, she turns her big, tearful eyes up to the top of the pit. “Hello, HELLO! Oh have you come to rescue me? Please, please get me out of this dank pit. My husband will pay well for my return.”

The eidolon curious walks along to follow the paladin. Eventually after a while finding him andthe pit sniffing at the hole in a kind of ‘is there something down there to eat’ way.

Ruke walks to the edge of the pit. He can’t help but keep staring at the woman! Maybe he’s enthralled by her beauty. Yeah. Thats it. He looks to the eidolon, then shakes his head before calling down to the woman.

Well, now that he’s patched people up and mixed lots of chemicals, the alchemist finally joins everybody! "By the light, it’s a rhin- I mean, hello there, dear lady! Care for some assistance?’

Ruke, “We were sent by your husband, yes. We’ll get you out of there in a moment.”

She claps her hands together, “Oh goody! Well, I will be right here, I cannot climb out on my own.”

The Eidolon just peeks down with its long neck into the hole seeing the jumbling fat… thing… not quite sure what to make of it. Kinda wonders if its a cow in a disguise.

Well, he wasn’t smart enough to come up with that idea on his own anywho, so unless someone suggests it to him, Ruke’s probably going to have to break his back to get this woman out of there.

“Shall I go look at the machine in the other room, then?”

And as the group tries to figure out how to get Callos’ wife out of a deep hole, we will call it a night here for now.

View
The Adventure Begins (Session 2)
On the way to the mine, then chaos and carnage.

As it is still early enough, well before mid-day, it seems as good a time to set out as any. Through the doors of the Weary Wyvern and out onto the market the group heads, bound toward the northern gates. Even with her cloak drawn and the hood pulled down, the dark elf still brings more than her share of stares and curses. Still, they manage to make it to the gates before the guards stop the group, looking each over. They glance to Sin distatefully, and one comments to Ruke, assuming he’s the ‘leader’ so to speak, “So you’re the lot who got saddled with the damned drow… Do us a favor and make sure she doesn’t return eh?” The other guard standing near swats the first in the shoulder “Hey now.. you ain’t supposed to go urgin’ folk to kill prisoners. Yer supposed ta let it happen all natural like.”

Ruke is smiling and whistling the whole time, oblivious to any curses that come Sin’s way. However, when the guards stop them and speaks up, he just gives a confused look to the pair. “Not return? I’m not sure where else she would go if not back here. Maybe you’re the traveling type and I don’t know it, yet?” He directs this last question at Sin: “We’ll have to all play twenty questions on the way there to get to know each other!” And then, to the guards, “Now, if you’ll excuse us, good guards, we have some bandits to bring to justice.”

“Are we supposed to bring them back here for justice, or,” Arthur taps his cane on the ground. “Give them a taste of justive where they are?”

There’s a bit of a scowl exchanged between Sin, the guard, and the other guard, then one of them chimes up “Well if you can get ‘em to surrender, you’re more than welcome to bring ‘em back fer trial, but I doubt it’ll be that easy. They’re bandits you see, so they’ll just be facing a noose on their return. Only reason yer girlie there..” they gesture to Sin, “Isn’t dancing the hempen jig is ‘cause she pleaded off with the old magistrate to show you lot where they’re hiding.” The other guard chimes up “I’m willin’ to bet she did more than plead with the magistrate to get that.”

“More than plead? I can’t imagine what else. Maybe a card game or something.” He looks from ‘the other guard’ to Sin. Then, Ruke turns to his companions. “We’ll see what the bandits decide, then. A trial or death.”

“I’m not sure either but if she does what is needed I wont do anything else than what is needed,” Darius commented.

Arthur butted in, “The sisal two-step? The twine fandango? Oh, surely not! No need to waste your rope, my good man. I think we will have this situation quite readily… in hand.”

Sin scowls at the guards but bites her tongue. It looks almost hard enough to draw blood. The foremost guard nods “Right right, just keep an eye on her. Her kind will turn on you at the drop of a hat.” The other pipes up “Yeah, and she was a bandit too, don’t forget that, that’s almost as bad.” The two move aside, waving the group through and onto the road beyond. Of course, they’d keep an eye on the party until it is well past the road and out of sight of the gate. The road itself meanders out from the gates, past a few last merchant’s stalls and a stable as it winds its way north. Beyond that there are fields which span hillsides, and the occasional stand of trees or brush.

A top hat! A nice coat! And armor. Goggles. Alchemical ingredients. Bomb ingredients. Why aren’t there any sane bombers? What’s wrong with the occasional mild-mannered bomber? But at least Grevane seems genial enough, more than willing to regale people with tales of Glory, Alchemy, and horrible, horrible experiments.

Darius seems preoccupied with a throbbing headache from a encounter on his way to the Wyvern.

Ruke nods politely to the guards as they depart and once out of the city, turns to ask Sin to guide them towards their destination.

Sin nods at Ruke’s request, “It’s up the road here about half an hour, then out into the foothills… We holed up there a while back. Can I have my gear back now? we’re out of the city…” she looks across to Ruke. “I’ll tell you what I know on the way.”

“Sounds good.” The paladin gives her all her gear back, except for her weapons. “I’ll give you the rest once we’re there.”

“Thats sounds like a good Idea Sir Ruke” Darius was now thinking a fully armed bandit wouldn’t be a good thing.

“That certainly sounds like the beginning of a plan!” the alchemist added.

Sin nods and straps the pouch with her tools onto her belt, letting it fall at one hip under her cloak. “right right.. So anyway, I hooked up with them about half a year back. We used to hit the foothills, mostly trading and mining trains.. Take some of their goods and then retreat back to the mines. Never hit too close to home, only had to hurt those who got a little rough. Anyway, about a month ago this fellow comes by, name of Thule. He says that he’s got a fellow who’d pay well for prisoners… so long as we don’t ask any questions. Our leader at the time, Mister Tannon rejects the idea outright, but then our houndsman Perkins and a few other blokes press him on the idea and press him. So Tannon and Perkins get in a fight and Perkins kills him! Kills him outright and then he feeds him to the damned dogs. Next thing you know, this Thule fellow comes by again as if he were summoned, and they make a deal to start selling captives to the fellow. Perkins takes over and we start hitting closer to town… looking for people, not just goods. About that time I slipped out and left. It was too much for me.”

Ruke nods, then smiles at Darius and Arthur. “That’s not a very nice thing to do.” He comments, though about what part of the story, it is hard to say. Maybe just like the whole story in general. “Do you know anymore about this Thule man?”

Sin shakes her head. “No, only that he smelled like rot, and that he had coin, good coin. Coin enough to turn Perkins to his side. The damned dwarf was never the best of sorts, but I never thought he’d Tannon over something like money. And ever since he got more mean.”

“Well, that Thule fellow certainly sounds shifty.” Arthur adjusts his goggles. “Hmmm. perhaps too shifty. We should keep an eye out.”

“I …don’t like the sound of any of that, Those things are simply wrong on several levels” Darius seems slightly peeved and makes a scowl.

Sin “I can’t imagine there being more than half a dozen fellows, including Perkins himself, who stuck around. Some like me slipped off, some objected and got killed and fed to the dogs. I guess I just had the misfortune of being what I am, and got rounded up by the guard.”

About this time, the party can see a somewhat suspicious lump just off the side of the road, buried rather poorly under freshly turned dirt. There’s nothing but farmland at that point, though they’re about two hundred yards from a rock outcropping, where the road diverts around a steeper hill. In the distance to either side of the road, a few low wood and sod farmhouses can be seen.

“Hold up a second,” he stops when he sees the lump. Ruke will approach it to get a better look.

It’s about half the size of a man. A few flies buzz about the lump. It smells vaguely rotten.

“What does it look like, good man?” Arthur asks!

Tania just holds unto Darius’ arm gently letting her soft pale hair fall into her face… being quiet this entire trip for reasons only she herself would know but she hasn’t left their side. Keeping herself a fair ditance from the drow woman. Hearing the commotion about the lump she stops tilting her head.

“I’m not sure yet.” Ruke will sift through the dirt until he reveals what it is. The paladin doubts its a person, but maybe its one of those little people. He’s wearing gloves, as a note, so no bare contact.

It does not take much shifting to reveal what it is. There’s the jingling of chain long before the dirt is brushed away, revealing literally half a man. He wears a still servicable suit of mail, but the torso ends rather messily shortly under the waist. From the loosk of the bloodstained tabard and the mail itself, this is one of the town guard. Perhaps a road patrolman. From the looks of the body, he’s been dead more than a day.

Darius keeps close to Tania covering her a bit with his bodyy

Sin wrinkles her nose. “That’s just straight up nasty… who could have done such a horrible, horrible thing….”

The paladin stares at the deceased man for a long minute. Not saying or doing anything. Then, after some time has passed, he buries the body again as best as he can and stands. “We beg the Gods in their kindness to have pity on this soul. Grant him now a place of lasting safety. Amen.” After the prayer, he joins the others. “I do not know who could have done this. We’ll alert the guards to this upon our return.”

Tania gasps seeing the dead person… as the paladin moves to burrying the body she moves to help though not very strong herself she does seem to know proper prayers. Trying her besting. Nodding her head at the comment.

Sindrathiir looks around, as if looking for something. “Actually this begs a more important question… what happened to the other half? I dont’ see anything like that around here, and no sign of a battle either. Well, you lot can let the guard know when you get back. IF we get out of this alive.”

Some foul beast, perhaps. A passing traveler may have tried to bury what was left themselves. Though I imagine they would have reported it…" Ruke throws a few guesses out there, but he’s not sure how accurate any of them might be.

Sin shakes her head, “Shall we be on our way then?”

Darius shakes his head very much yes

Ruke nodded, “Lets go.”

And so Sin leads them further along the road. Perhaps fifteen more minutes, the trees are thicker, though still far short of a forest. Likewise the landscape is steeper, foothills of nearby low mountains. Ahead, just where the road makes another sharp bend, there is a horseman. Kierdan has been sent by the duke to make sure this mismatched group assembled by the Merchant’s Guild sees these bandits destroyed. Kierdan will recognize the dark elf Sin from her time in the dungeons, though she never saw him.

Onward and forward they go, of course… well, up to that dude on a horse. Well, then. Wait, Arthur actually says that. “Well, then.” Indeed.

Kierdan Summers watches the group approach atop his horse, Setanta, a brilliant brown colt with wide, expressive brown eyes. His crisp, bright red hair hangs down over his face on his left side, the long locks sharply contrasting his darkly-dyed blue leather coat. A large, wooden shield lies strapped across his back, and a heavy battle hammer rests at his hip, held there by a long cord of leather. As he spies the drow, his mouth opens into a small smile. “I’ve been waiting for you lot. What’s taken you so long?”

As if the dead-body thing never happened, Ruke is back to smiling and whistling. The brown-haired paladin stops when the man on horseback addresses them. He thinks long and hard on his answer. “Our lack of horses, I imagine.”

Kierdan Summers snickers before he breaks into a full chuckle to Ruke, reaching down to pat Setanta just ahead of his heavy military saddle. “Yeah, horses are great. Especially my lad, Setanta. Name’s Summers, Kierdan Summers. His grace, the Duke, sent me to make sure that y’all get the job done.” Another smirk, another smile. Oddly, he doesn’t display the duke’s colors on his person anywhere. “I’d say it’s your lucky day. Well then, let’s get to it.”

“So, we have yet another companion. Are we supposed to be a band of mercenaries or a small army, I wonder?” The alchemist asks himself.

Sin “Well there’s six of them, six of us… that makes it an even fight. Except the damned dogs.”

Kierdan laughs, “My Setanta’s worth ten mangy mutts. Ain’t that right, lad?”

The horse lets out a snort, as if he vaguely understands the praise that his rider lays upon him.

“The Duke sent you? Well, that’s great! Wow, he must really be looking out after us and his people, then.” Ruke doesn’t ask for any sort of verification of Kierdan’s claims. “I am Ruke Vasser, paladin from the Temple of Law.” He offers a handshake to Kierdan, then pats Setanta gently. “We’re neither an army nor mercenaries, we are the will of the people. Sent to keep them safe.”

Tania giggles gently at the mention of how their group seems to be growing into it’s own small army but blinking at the horse as she gently walks up “…. it is a pleasure to meet you”

Kierdan Summers gives Tania a nod and a smile, leaning down in the saddle and offering her a hand. By the Gods, he is certainly handsome, and from the looks of things, he is distinctly aware of that. “Likewise, sweetheart.”

Darius seems very uncomfortable at the gesture at looks the man in the eye with a litlle scorn and puts his hand out to shake. “Darius … A..pleasure..I guess”

Kierdan Summers spots the scorn in Darius’ eye as he greets Tania, filing that away in the back of his head for later. Kierdan takes Darius’ hand, giving it a firm shake with a small grin. “You guess? You rather go fight the bandits by yourself, boyo?”

“Not that a crowd is bad, of course,” Arthur interjects. “Certainly not in this case. The more the merrier, then?”

Tania blushes at the flattery, giving a gentle curtsey before turning to the horse “…. what a beautiful horse… c-can I pet it?”

Kierdan Summers nods to Tania. “‘course you can. Setanta don’t bite unless I tell ’im to.”

“Yes, the more the merrier! Boy, oh, boy, we sure are blessed to have all met each other and be doing such a nice service for the town.” Ruke is mostly talking to himself, but he pats Arthur on the back after saying all this.

“Well, I’m not good with all those fancy greetings Sir Summers, and I was sent here to help them, and dont call me boyo..sir” Darius returns the firm grip and then pulls his hand back and folds his arms

“Keepin’ it formal, huh? If that’s the way that ya want it, Sir Darius, then ya can call me Kierdan anyway. S’what I’d rather be known by.”

Arthur_Grevane quirks a brow at being pat on the back… but the middle-aged man simply adjusts his hat and says nothing.

Sindrathiir snorts a bit at the interactions, crossing her arms over her chest and leaning against the outcropping nearest. She shakes her head, only to look across to Ruke “It’s twenty more minutes or so over the hills up here if we travel safe… But I think it’s about time you gave me my blade and crossbow back. I’m not keen on waiting for you to pass it over if they get the jump on us.”

“Right Kierdan … and just call me Darius,” and then, “She… has a point…I think”

Kierdan Summers nods to Darius before he shoots Ruke a small smirk. “From the looks of it, she’ll be handy with both of ‘em. What’s the rest of yer names?”

Tania just happily seems content to petting the stallion as she looks back to Sin nervously obvious not comfotrable with the drow possibly getting her weapons back. Simply returning to Darius’s side and holding unto his arm “Im Tania…. and that drow woman… I dont know if we should…”

“You make a fine point, Sindrathiir.” He takes the time to pronounce her full name, though it probably doesn’t sound as good coming from him as it would an elf. The paladin offers the drow her weapons back, then makes eye-contact with her. “I will make sure you receive your fair share of the money from this and that you’re protected in town while you’re with me.”

“I,” He announces, his voice a basso rumble “Am Arthur Grvane. Scholar, alchemist, adventurer. Jack-of-all-trades, if I do say so myself.”
Darius seems conflicted with what he said earlier now that Tania doesnt want Sin to be armed. “We have to be more careful if she is arms”

Sin takes the short sword and sets the sheathe across the small of her back, then slips the strap for her light crossbow across one shoulder, so it passes across her bust to support the crossbow at her right hip, opposite her theives’ tools. “Alright then. And I’m Sindrathiir, but if that’s too complex for your human tongue you can just call me Sin. Everyone else does. Your horse going to be good in these hills?” It should be, they’re steep but not that steep.

“Setanta and I have handled a lot worse than this, Miss Sindrathiir.” Kierdan assures her.

The paladin nods to Tania and Darius. “I understand your concern, but she must be given the chance to prove herself before we condemn her.”

Kierdan Summers beams the drow an alluring smile before he looks to Ruke, the only unidentified member of the group. “You look like one o’ those knightly types. What’s yer name, Ser?” He climbs down from his horse, moving to offer Ruke a handshake on equal footing.

Darius seems to perk up at the paladins willingness to redeem even her, “That … is the right thing…to do I guess. Everyone deserves…a chance”

“Ruke Vasser, paladin at the Temple of Law. Pleasure to meet you.” He shakes Summers’ hand. Ruke has a firm grip—clearly a lot of power in his arms.

Sin scoffs “I could care less about a chance, I just don’t wanna get my damn throat slit without a fight back. Whenever we’re ready.. it’s just up this way.” And she begins to climb up a steep slope, though not steep enough to deny access to the horse. The hillside there acends perhaps thirty feet before leveling off. She’ll pause just as soon as she’s ten feet up though,waiting for the rest.

Kierdan Summers grips back, not quite so hard as the armored powerhouse, but no slouch or scholar either. “Just call me Kierdan. I don’t mean ta give anybody th’ wrong impression, but when I get in a fight, I tend ta start directin’ traffic. I hope ya don’t mind, Sir Vasser.”

Kierdan Summers nods to the drow, discreetly admiring her backside as she heads up the hill before he lets out a sharp whistle, calling Setanta over to trot to him.

“Not at all. Give my sword guidance as long as it follows the will of the people and the Gods.”Ruke will then move to follow Sin.

Darius nods to Tania to see if she is ready and when given the sign to follow

The alchemist holds to the back, since he seems like the type who needs time to prepare things. Like explosives.

Kierdan Summers gives Ruke a sharp nod before he saddles up, moving to his place in the marching order. If nobody gives him any direction, he’ll head right up behind their guide, seeming the sort that likes to be at the head of the action.

Ruke ends up taking rearguard. No man left behind, sort of thing.

So the drowess leads them through a gradually thickening wood, even as the sun begins to head into afternoon hours. If anything, it only grows warmer as the sunlight courses down, though at least there’s some relief once under the shade of the trees. Ahead, a gravelly voice begins to drift down from an upward slope and rocky overhang. Sin holds up her hand, motioning for the others to stop. “We’re here..” she speaks in a soft tone.

Kierdan Summers pulls up behind the drow, remaining in the saddle for now. He looks out, past her raised hand, looking for what she sees out there.

The paladin nods to Sin. He awaits to see if anyone proposes any specific course of action. The only thing he has is ‘charge in and fight’, so he refrains from suggesting it for now.

There’s trees that obstruct a direct view, but one can hear the movements and the low singing up ahead to the north-east. Sin frowns faintly. “That’ll be Oslo…”

“Is there any path we might be able to take that he won’t notice our approach?”

Sin shakes her head to the paladin, “We can try to cut through the slope up there… but if he’s got his hounds they may scent us.. Wait, which way is the wind coming from?”

From the south-west.

Sin “If we come around from the south we can sneak up closer, provided any of you can move quietly…” She looks to the others with a raised brow.

Darius seems to keep his arms crossed but cant seem to think much more than..hit it harder

Arthur_Grevane will not comment on how quietly he can move! That means he’s trying to be quiet for once.

Kierdan, “If the hounds ain’t smelled us comin’, we might be able ta sneak ’round… yeah, south, south-east, somewhere that-a-way.”

“My armor tends to make a lot of noise, but we could try it. If they become alerted to us, we’ll need to charge in and try to get it done,” Ruke adds.

Sin nods “Right then… are we agreed on that?” She loads her crossbow. “Any one have any other preferences? last minute preparations?”

Kierdan Summers glances among the group. “I don’t think th’ element o’ surprise likes our merry band all that much, personally. I’ll hang back ta charge in when y’all get caught.”

Darius shakes his head “NO”

Tania looked over the party coughing gently “We would be hard pressed to sneak….. we have so many people in armor and I cant hide that well…. Isn’t it better to have the cavalry man go in while the long range covers him? then the fighters follow?”

Kierdan Summers stares daggers at Darius. “Keep your bloody voice down ’fore you get us killed.”

Sin, “The trees provide some cover from this distance, would need to get closer anyway.”

The paladin nods. He has no doubt that any attempts at stealth will fail, but the moment that their ‘cover’ is blown, they can charge in anyway.

Arthur gets the bag o’ materials ready, though those bombs can’t be made until it’s time to go boom.

Sin “If you want I can try to sneak around to where I can take a pot shot at him whiel you guys head up the path.”

“Very well, let us do that,” the paladin assents, before asking, “Are we ready?”

Darius responds first, “Yes… I am ready..”

Sin nods "Give me about half a minute or so before you start making your way up.

“I think so, my good man. Ready whenever everybody else is,” of course the alchemist is ready.

Kierdan Summers nods, looking to the drow. “Be careful.”

“Should we really be trusting her… what if she brings the bandits to us?” Tania voices her concern.

And Sin heads off into the woods unless someone physically stops her.

“What if I do? Or Arthur, or Darius, or you? What if sulfur and brimstone rain from th’ sky?” Kierdan queries.

Ruke doesn’t stop the drow. “I have detected no evil in her heart, if that eases your worries.”

Kierdan Summers flashes a disarming smile to Tania, attempting to demonstrate that he doesn’t honestly think that she’d betray them. “There’re lots o’ what ifs in battle. Ya just roll with the cards that you’re dealt.”

There’s distant barking from up along the slope, and growling. A man calls out “What’s out there boys.. what do ya see?”

Ruke starts up the path slowly. He’s uh, not fast in his armor.

Darius tries his best to seem quiet

Kierdan Summers leads Setanta forward in a trot, not getting TOO far from the others.

Ruke will be running because he’s slower than dirt otherwise.

And the one eyed man shouts into the woods “Hey, is that you? Sin… damnit, why’d you come back.. Perkins wants your head and if I don’t…”

Kierdan Summers reaches for his warhammer, tying the cord to his wrist before he draws his wooden shield, the heavy piece of lumber banded with a thin metal strip for structural integrity.

Ruke looks over to Summers: “If she needs help, ride ahead. The rest of us will be right behind you.”

Kierdan Summers shoots Ruke a smirk. “Way ahead of you, mate.”

Almost everyone is hilariously slow, except Kierdan and the leashed dogs. From where Kierdan is, he can see through the edge of the forest a man with an eyepatch with two massive hounds. The dogs growl and strain at their leashes.

Kierdan Summers rides out onto the trail, shouting to the eyepatched man and the dogs. “Oi! Come and fight me if ya wanna party, ya little bitches! An’ I dinnae mean the hounds!”

As Kierdan shouts, regardless, the man drops the chain leashes, and the houdns tear off into the woods. The man looks suitably shaken, actually. And then the dogs are off in the woods. Sindrathir raises her loaded crossbow and takes a pot shot at Oslo, to try to keep him from alerting anyone inside. In case the sounds of battle and Kierdan’s shouting haven’t. The light dazzles her sensitive eyes and the man has some cover from the woods, but then he is flat footed. Her crossbow bolt grazes the man, and he curses loudly.

The sound of dogs barking, leaves being trampled, and a cursing wounded man echo through the forested slopes to your ears.

Darius starts to move into the brush trying to see what went on, a fight clearly about to happen

Aside from the sounds of battle, now one of the summoners has headed into the forests.

Ruke draws his greatsword and runs towards where he hears the dogs. ((Run action, done))

Now the paladin is dashing off into the trees as well.

And thus, the alchemist follows, huffing and puffing to run after the others. Well, now!

And Tania hustles up the road toward Kierdan as the others storm off into the brush.

Oslo turns tail and runes into a nearby mine entrance. The tunnel is carved into the stone and shored up by wooden supports. the interior is lit by dim lanterns. He shouts all the while, “Sin’s back, and she brought help!”

Kierdan Summers continues along the trail, trying to close the distance with Oslo while also not running straight out into an ambush or getting shot by several hundred arrows. Arrogant? Yes. Stupid? No. Kierdan rides up the gravel and dirt trail, over broken fragments from miners now lost to time toward the mine entrance. It’s likely he’ll have to dismount when he gets to the entrance proper, unless he enjoys rock-to-head contact.

The dogs RIP into the drowess. She screams as the first one bites into her leg and flings her to the ground, then the second comes up and begins to maul her pretty, pretty face. She lies still after the second one’s bite, barely breathing. Her blood soaks into the ground about her. And she continues to bleed out despite her body’s best attempts to stablize itself. Darius.

Darius starts running hearing the dogs growls and the drowess’s screams

NOW he ecatches sight of the ruin that is Sin, under the snarling dogs.

Darius calls out, “They are tearing her apart…someone kill the dogs quick” heaving Grimoire

Ruke runs straight at the dogs as fast as he can. “Get off her you mutts!”

Alchemist to the RESCUE! Arthur quickly mixxes a bunch of odd powders (at least one smells like soap!) into a little metal capsule, closes it, and gives it a shake. Then he throws it underhand a rather tremendous distance! Unfortunately, he cannot catch both in a splash, as they are not bordering each other or an intersection! But he does aim for an intersection of squares

“I say, I should have signed up for intramural. Ah, well.”

So any way the only damage he does is to set the trees on fire. A fire begins.

Tania turns when she notices all have dived into the bush deciding to continue taking the road mostly because she will cover them in the bush so that no bandits get in.

As Tania rounds the corner, she can see the glint of fire through the trees, and a drowess being mauled by dogs

Tania calls to the others, “Would someone get her out before she gets killed!”

Kierdan Summers dashes off into the forest at the sound of drow screams. Letting a woman get mauled to death by dogs? Preposterous! Kierdan Summers bounds Setanta up to the dog, lifting his hammer as he calls over to Ruke. “Get that other hound off of her, this cur is mine!”

The swift, brave cavalier challenges the lazy dog. The hound yipes as it is struck, staggering from the blow. Then, unable to reach Kierdan, it attempts to pull his horse down. likely very poorly The second hound bounds forth and snarls, biting at Ruke’s armor like it found a new chew toy.

A brute wielding a greataxe sprints out of the mines, snarling.

Ruke’s armor is saving him right now. “I know it is not your fault, puppy! You’ve no doubt been abused, but I am going to have to see you put down! You’re a threat to others.”

Darius rushes into the Fray, Grimoire held high though still to far to strike, he tries and positions himself in such a way that Ruke gets a solid blow in on the beastie

And as Darius rushes past, the hound turns to bite at him. It doesn’t manage to hit a major artery, thankfully.

Tania cries out, “Darius! Be careful!”

Darius grunts and the teeth bite into his exposed calf muscle but seems fixated on his goal and positions himself, ready

Another man, this one bearing a lute and a bow comes strolling out toward the mouth of the cave. “what’s all the commotion out here then…”

Seeing that Sin has stabilized, that takes one less worry off his mind. The paladin hefts his greatsword up and brings it down in a powerful strike against the dog—hoping to use the flanking Darius provided.

Ruke’s greatsword impacts the ground, and the dog ‘Yipes!’. At first it seems as though Ruke missed, and then the hound peels apart right down the middle.

Ruke doesn’t take any pride or satisfication from the kill. Afterwards, he moves to engage the next dog. (Move, done)

Ruke slogs through pools of blood and entrails tothe next hound.

For his next turn,the alchemist mutters something, as now it’s getting a little crowded for a bomb (as much as he wants to! The flames would be even more glorious!). He draws his fancy crossbow instead, and tries to pick on the remaining doggy from this distance. “Ah-ha! Got you in my sights now, miserable cur! Let’s see if you can dodge this.”

His fire will burn out at the end of his turn. Then he manages to tag the remaining hound.

“By golly, I believe it hit.”

Arthur drops the remaining hound, which collapses, bleeding from the wound.

It seems that they’ve kept the drow from danger, but you can see the people coming out from the mine entrance. Especially the greataxe weilding maniac in scale mail

“The bandits are comming!” Tania yells before diving into the forest for cover

Oslo himself walks out. Now they’re closer, they can see the one eyed man is also wearing scale mail, and carrying a greatclub. He’s no where near as well built as Dingbat though.

Ruke tenses up when he hears Tania’s warning.

Darius comments, “Well isnt that great … now we are one down..and that dog’s bite was pretty strong”

Kierdan Summers glances down to Sindrathiir before he turns to Ruke. “You need to get her clear of here. I’ll cover you. Regroup with me when you can.” With that, he and Setanta wheel to head back toward the mine and face the two men.

Darius seems to bite down hard as the blood flows

The alchemist adds, "Well, they were indeed attack dogs, bred for their bite. Clearly not for their sense, though.

Kierdan Summers looks to the two well-built men, lifting himself up in the saddle as tall as he can, brandishing his warhammer. “You two made a big mistake. You tore up the pretty elf. Come here and die, if you’ve got the balls.”

Ruke nods to Kierdan, then turns to Darius and Arthur. “Can you help provide artillery for Kierdan?”

“If your wound is too grevious, you can stay behind and protect her if you would like,” Ruke gestures to the drow, making the offer directed at Darius.

Dingbat looks to Kierdan with fear for a moment, then his eyes begin to cloud. He froths at the mouth and lets forth a battlecry, something to the effect of: “RAAAAAAAAAAAAAAARGH!” In a berserk rage, he then charges Kierdan’s horse. He HACKS into the horse.

“Its not as bad as I make it sound, I have gone through much worse just to learn how to use Grimoire … But I will take your wisdom " Darius points to the drow and then to Arthur.. " maybe he should take her…seems to be a healer.."

Ruke looks from Darius to Arthur, “Can you heal her?” As soon as he finishes asking, he hears Dingbat’s battle cry and glances in that direction.

“I assure you, ah… unfortunately, my, erm, chemicals are specially calibrated… they would not work for others, I fear. Not without intense study.”

Sidnrathiir lies there, looking like she was mauled by some wild dogs

“Im going to try and help him out..indirectly” Darius says moving closer as he looks up in the sky a shining light bursting forward as a celestial eagle draws forth from it and dves down onto the Fierce Beserker

Flanking with the warhorse, the eagle actually scores a hit, tagging the barbarian with the holy power of its smite.

Darius, “There you go Kierdan.. some help”

The man with the lute stalks out of the tunnel and sighs. “Come back here Dingbat, you’regonna get yourself killed!” He then begins to strum his lute, beginning to sing a spell.

Ruke decides that if they’re all going to make it out here alive, his talents would be better served on the battlefield. “Very well. Darius, continue helping…indirectly… and stay here and keep Sin safe.” He then runs forward, shouting boldly to the bandits: “In the name of the Duke, his people, and the Temple of the Law: I demand you surrender yourselves now.”

Arthur may not be able to heal the poor girl, but he can rush up to defend her!

Darius, “Dont worry, Im not one to laze about..If it looks too bad, My blade will be out there with yours”

“I am coming! Fear not, everybody!” Arthur cried out.

Tania just dodges through the trees “dammit! I’m coming! I have a potion!”

Darius called back, “Oh right…you do… Good thing you brought it … Though its not me on the ground now..”

Oslo steps forward toward Ruke, weilding his greatclub. He brings the length of wood toward Ruke in a power attack. “batter up!”

Kierdan gets to see Ruke take a massive club and go down.

“Are you deaf? We’re here to arrest—-OOOF.” Smack, paladin goes down into the dirt.

Darius facepalms

Tania has to cover her face at the sight of the paladin being downed in one hit

Kierdan Summers slips down from the saddle as the barbarian whiffs on his attack at the wounded horse. As Setanta retreats, Kierdan gives his hammer a spin before he swings it for the brute’s jaw. “Don’t fuck with my horse.”

WHAM, the hammer slams into Dingbat, sending him to the ground, bleeding from his wounds. And hilariously enough, he’s still shaken when it comes time for the stabilization check, so..

Kierdan Summers spits on his fallen foe. “Fuck you.”

Darius step through the brush waving arcane energies about him forming a translucent barrier about him as he points towards the brute who assaulted the paladin, mentally urging it to attack

And it’s a clean miss.

Simon’s spell goes off. Kierdan, and Kierdan falls to the ground, sleeping. Simon scoots forward then.

Kierdan Summers keels over, falling flat on his back, laying spread-eagled on the grass and dirt, making the occasional light snore.

Darius curses at the bad luck the group seems to be having

Grevane tries to reload his crossbow!

Tania seeing the battle turning when Kierdan falls asleep she moves to the edge of the woods and summons a celestial hound to move into the battle.

Oslo steps forward to there. the eagle can take an opportunity attack. He curses as he’s seriously wounded by a damn bird. With that, he swings his club, at the bird.

Tania calls out, “Sir Kierdan, wake up!”

Kierdan Summers doesn’t answer, stirring slightly and mumbling something unintelligible.

Darius places his foot back along the ridge and pushes forward raising his greatsword high and trying to cleave the man in twain.

The impact is vicious, Darius takes Oslo’s head off. The arterial spray gets all over him as the bandit’s body collapses to its knees.

“Give up or your next!” Darius points to the singer covered in gore, breathing harshly

Simon curses and turns to flee down the tunnel.

With a loud CLICK, the bolt finally locks into place! “Bombs are so much less complicated and awkward. Now, let’s see how well, I can do… THIS!” he moves through the thickest of woods, and then… well, what do you know. they’re gone! “Well!” he says. “We seem to have survived the first part of this day.”

And as we leave it here, the party is left to recover their wounded and unconscious, while the cowardly bardic bandit flees into the not-so-dark mines.

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The Adventure Begins (Session 1)
Confusion and Mayhem

Most of our first session was taken up by an abortive character concept and build that I had to nix after 3 hours of play. What fallows below is a necessarily edited version of events that should be considered canon. Spelling errors are corrected, and as one character concept changed but kept the same name and relative background, all references to the trouble his appearance caused have been removed. The posts have been chronologically ordered and ‘unwoven’ to allow for posts within the same background to fit together. If there are any objections or comments as to whether this results in a readable summary, let me know.

Introductions
Midsummer, just twenty years after the dark wizard Londreth had marched upon the fields with his abyssal hordes, just five years after the ascension of King Dremdanaan. Things had been relatively peaceful these past few years. No major wars wracked the land, though bandits had been present in increasing numbers. The town of Althem sat in the midst of this land. A walled city of some moderate size, it pays fealty to a nearby duke, but otherwise is left to govern itself. The walls are some twenty foot high and surround a maze of low wood and stone buildings, as well as a temple to the court of order, where the gods of law hold sway. Missives have gone out to various interested parties. To the temple of law, to the college upon the north end of the city, and to the Blue Tower, whose crystalline walls are visible from the southern edge of town.

At the temple
First the temple calls upon is champions: “We have a call for assistance from a local merchant. There may be danger, there may be innocents in need of protection, there will definitely be righteous retribution that needs to be doled out. Who among you are brave enough to go forth and lend aid?” Of course, the priest’s words would have greater impact if most of the ‘champions’ were more than mere squires or recently sworn men at arms. The veterans were already out and about among the people, or attending the lord’s banquet in the capitol. The priest’s eyes can’t help but turn to Ruke on occasion as the ominous silence drags on.

Ruke is a young paladin with a smile stuck on his face. With short brown hair, he wears a set of old scale mail. This brown eyed man carries a greatsword and a pack of adventuring equipment. He’s strong and handsome, but a little dull. He doesn’t hestitate, holding his arm up. “I will answer this call.”

The priest almost talks right over Ruke, as soon as the youth holds his hand up “Good, I knew I could count on you. Report to the Weary Wyvern east off of market square. You’ll be able to identify it by the scoundrelous looking figures passing in and out. Within you will be looking for a man named Callos. He is a merchant of some repute, and the bandits have reached the point where he petitioned the duke for assistance. It figures that the poor are allowed to suffer, but as soon as the rich come under assault something is done.” A sad sigh and a tired shake of his head follows, before he takes the folded up letter and presents it to Ruke. “Do well on this and I am sure that your future will be bright.”

Ruke carefully takes the letter from the priest and stows it away safely on his person. He bows his head politely, smiling: “I do this not for my future, but for the people put in danger by these bandits. May the Gods bless us.” Ruke then excuses himself to travel to the Weary Wyvern.

Ruke finds it easy to head toward the Weary Wyvern.

At the Blue Tower
As for the note to the Blue Tower, the Master of the Tower calls forth the various talents who have studied there. He turns his gaze to each of them. Summoners, sorcerers, witches and others. Persons whose talents set them apart and whose studies don’t truly rise to the wizards and others at the university in town. “Right,” The master speaks in an irritated tone, turning the letter over in his hands. “It comes time for us to pay our dues again… the lord demands we help this fellow… Crallus or Callus or whatever… If we want to continue our lease for another year. You lot know the drill, fresh meat gets put on the grill first. Any volunteers?”

Darius` appears about ready to raise his hand looking to Tania for approval first.

Tania the young little summoner smiles gently as she nods to Darius and gently takes his hand to raise it together with a grin on her face. She wasn’t going to let Darius do this on his own. Nor could she find it in herself not to help.

Within the Blue tower, the Master looks amused. “So it’s you and the angel brat. Well then. Head to town and look for the Weary Wyvern. Find this fat bastard and see what he wants. Oh and if you see Miss May there, tell her to come see me some time.” He chortles to himself, then waves his hand, “Oh and try not to die without putting on a good show. We got a reputation to keep up.”

Darius nods keeping a firm grip on Tania and bows to the Master " I hope not to embarrass this establishment"

The Master of the Blue tower snorts at the words “Whatever, just get gone with ya… my work is done here.” He gathers up his cloak and begins to make his way down from the tall dais, heading toward the passage to his chambers, leaving the two to their devices. The Tower itself is perhaps an hour outside of the city gates, but the road is traveled well enough to allow for safe passage.

Tania glares a being called a brat. Keeping ahold of Darius’ hand as she simply moves to lead him out after “Don’t bother with him…. common we should get packed, get you ready and go”

“Then let us get prepared. We should not take to long Tania … The tower needs this favor” He goes with her to prepare their things seemingly thinking of much more than this simple mission the Master sent them on.

With that Tania takes him back to his room and pulls out a small box from under the bed taking time to help Darius get ready before leaving him to grab her own things waiting for him at the exit to the tower.

Darius straps on his sword Grimoire and Studded leather armor tight. He could never be too sure about travel, with bandits and cutpurses about and Tania was small, so he’d rather keep people from thinking about even fighting. After retrieving his last gold in his pouch, Darius moves towards the tower exit

Tania goes back up to check on him when it takes a while “are you- oh~….” chuckling gently as she moves over slipping the cloak over his face "There….that should do it " kissing the top of his head “Common we will be late” moving to lead him out and walk with him to the town.

Tania and Darius make their way down the road toward town. They pass scattered farms and woodsman’s huts, through lightly forested hills and toward the gates. About a hundred yards from the gates they pass the charred stone statue commemorating the prior duke’s victory over the demon lord Sxaznud. Someone has recently laid flowers there at the base. Ahead, the walls of the city gates rise, flanked by two guards who watch the few who pass in and out, looking them over for contraband, wanted persons, that sort of thing. Each is clad in mail, bearing spears and with short swords at their sides.

Both of the guards peer at Tania and Darius, before waving the two through, already distracted by the next one to come through the gates. Within, the town is somewhat more bustling. There’s a central street that runs down toward the market square, perhaps several blocks in length. It’s wide and busy, with mostly humans wandering back and forth about their afternoon business.

Darius strides to their destination with vigor, holding Tania’s hand as his heart beats rapidly, feeling as though he narrowly escaped death. To the Weary Wyvern, now that the first obstacle had passed.

At the University
Within the University, one of the professors calls his recent graduates together. It’s a mix of wizards, alchemists, and magi, students who have finished their studies and are ready to either undergo graduate studies or start their own businesses. “For those of you,” He begins, “Who are about to set forth into this world. I have a … somewhat unique opportunity here. It’s a job that may require some hands-on applications, but it will undoubtedly get you in good with the merchant’s guild. One Callos has requested assistance of those of us with a knack for such things. Do any of you have any interest?”

“With a knack for what, my good sir?” Comes a cultured yet rumbling basso of a voice. Arthur Grevane! Alchemist, scholar, genius, mad bomber. Certainly dressed to the nines, and certainly armed to the teeth – well, but of course! “I must say, my return to studies has demonstrated quite a few, ah, practical shortcomings. A little more real-world experience would be just the thing, I think.” And so, the alchemist adjusts his bottle-esque goggles.

The professor looks across to Arthur, only to arch one brow “You, of all people, should be quite interested.” He takes the letter he had been holding up, and offers it across to him. “It pays.” The dour old man offers a frown to the alchemist. “There will be one Mister Callos waiting at the Weary Wyvern. Something to do with bandits and lost goods or the like. You will be working with others. Others who aren’t fireproof.”

He grins. His teeth are as large and white as dentures. “Then it is high time for them to learn proper fire safety, I fear!”

The professor scoffs. “Well if you want the task or not, it’s out of my hands.” He sets the letter down on the nearest table. “The Weary Wyvern is a tavern off of the market square. If you don’t go, I’m sure one of the others will.”

The alchemist takes up the letter. “Well, then! I shall go there as soon as humanly possible!” actually, no, he’ll go there almost as soon as humanly possible. He takes some time to grab gear, materials, equipment, and a few prepared bombs (but of course!). And THEN it’s off to the Weary Wyvern!

At the Weary Wyvern
The Weary Wyvern is situated just at the edge of a market that is bustling even within the growing hours of the afternoon. It’s a two story structure with an old wooden sign. People constantly pass in and out of the doors, letting them swing freely on the hinges. Perhaps a little disconcerting is the fact that there’s a guard outside, along with an empty prisoner cart. The guard eyes Ruke as he nears, then gazes back out over the crowd.

The people coming in and out of this establishment must be the scoundrels the priest spoke of. They didn’t look too bad to him! He’s sure that the guard and the prisoner cart are just there in case of emergencies. Ruke gives a big smile to the guard, offering a friendly greeting as he passes him and enters into the Weary Wyvern.

Within the Weary Wyvern, a crowd has already gathered within the dim interior. There are many people of various sorts within, sitting around tables or at the bar, drinking, eating, some sing along with a minstrel who plays in the corner. There’s a rather rotund looking fellow in fine clothes at one table, and beside him one of the guard stands. He has at his side a woman with a burlap sack over her head. Her hands are cuffed behind her back, and she wears a vest of leather and matching pants, leaving her arms and midriff bared. Her skin is a dusky blue-grey color, and her build is distinctly elven.

This is a fine looking place to him. Food, music, drinks. Everyone seems to be enjoying themselves. Everyone that is except the cuffed woman with a sack over her head. What an odd fashion choice. As he was the fanciest looking man in the room, Ruke approached that man’s table and spoke. “Greetings to you on this fine day blessed by the Gods. Are you Callos?”

Within the Weary Wyvern, the fat man looks up to Ruke at his approach. There’s several empty seats at the table. He nods with a chuckle, only to swallow deeply from his ale, clearing his throat. “Yes, yes indeed.. you are from the temple I assume? Please sit.” He gestures broadly toward one of the empty chairs. “We’ll await the others here, there’s plenty of time.”

The paladin smiles and sits down in one of the chairs. “Yes, I am from the temple.” He looks over at the elven prisoner. “Is this one of the bandits that have been troubling you?”

Callos chuckles and looks across to the dark skinned elf “Yeah you might say that. The guard caught her while investigating them… apparently some sort of squabble broke out between her and the rest. She has agreed to lead a group to their hideout in exchange for her life. Frankly I could care less what happens to her so long as whatever group goes with her gets the job done.”

Ruke clears his throat and asks: “What manner of squabble did she have with them?”

Callos shakes his head “Something over loot. I don’t know, didn’t ask. The important part is that she knows where they lair. And even if she is a filthy drow, at least she’ll be willing to lead you out without trouble. Just don’t let her out of your sight.”

He nods, then goes quiet. The paladin made a note to hear the drow’s side of the story later on. Ruke orders a glass of water at some point and listens to the bard while he’s waiting.

Arthur can finally make it to the Weary Wyvern, where Callos, the drow prisoner, a guard, and Ruke await.

Indeed! He enters the Weary Wyvern, twirling his cane (actually a blunt weapon) as he goes! Hey, if you do anything, do it in style.

Callos at least is decent enough to pay for any drinks Ruke may order. Arthur can see the above description of the tavern’s interior if he wants, it is much the same. A place that isn’t too shabby, filled with people from various walks of life. The bartender is a blonde woman in her late thirties, and overall the place seems clean.

Well! It’s pretty obvious who he should talk to – it’s not just the presence of a merchant, it’s kind of the whole thing. Grevane taps his cane when he approaches, and announces himself, “I,” he says “Am Arthur Grevane. Alchemist. Scholar. Adventurer. Expert. I heard that you are in need of somebody?”

Luckily for Callos, Ruke only orders water. When Arthur approaches the table, the paladin nods to him, but refrains from speaking since the merchant was addressed first.

Callos turns his gaze up to Arthur when he is near the table. “Indeed I do. I was looking for someone from the University. I’m glad you could join us. Please, have a seat while we wait to see if the Blue Tower has anyone to send us… Unreliable bunch of demon worshipers honestly.” The merchant guild has little patience for thsoe whose magic is ‘in the blood’ so to speak.

“Terribly sloppy people, flinging around power haphazardly. They should learn control.” Says the man with a bomb! But of course he does sit!

“I am Ruke Vasser, from the Temple of Law. It looks like we’ll be working together,” he offers a handshake to Arthur.

“Ah, a pleasure!” And he grins again, looking positively rooseveltian. “A pleasure, a pleasure indeed.” Grevane’s grip is pretty strong, and his hands bear the tell-tale marks of acid burns.

“A pleasure,” he agrees happily. Ruke has a strong grip as well—muscular sort. If he notices the burns, he doesn’t bring them up.

“Indeed it is! The pleasure is all mine, I assure you.” His age is hard to tell – he may be middle-aged, but his beard has not a single strand of gray! But then, what does it matter when you’re handling volatile chemicals? Oh, right. Lots.

So anyway, Tania gets back to the tavern at some point, just in time to see Callos sigh and look to the others “Very well then, it looks as if we may have to get this show on the road, my other letters have gone unanswered. Here’s the situation my friends… I am Callos of the Merchant’s guild, and you may have heard of recent bandit attacks. They’ve been… impacting trade, as well as more than a few peasants’ lives.” He sighs heavily, “Actually during a recent raid, my dear wife was captured, as well as my family’s heirloom jewels. I would reward anyone who can return these jewels… and my wife… to me.”

“Ah, bandits, is it?” and a nod of Arthur’s head! “Where was she attacked, if you know, good sir?”

Ruke will make some polite small-talk with the crazy looking alchemist until Callos speaks up. The paladin will then look to the merchant, then nod: “We will do what we can to return your wife to you safely along with bringing these bandits to justice for the benefit of the common man.”

Callos gestures to the bound drowess at his side, “I got one better. This girl knows where their hideout is. She was one of them apparently, says they holed up in an abandoned mine somewhere near here… she’s agreed to show you the way, and in return we won’t hang her. Isn’t that right sin?” The girl, whose head is covered with a burlap sack, nods once. A muffled noise comes from under the sack.

“And all this time, I thought she was – well, never mind, then.” The alchemist stands! “Shall we be off?”

“You will see your freedom once you’ve redeemed yourself for your sinful life,” Ruke tells the drow, standing alongside the alchemist.

The drowess mumbles something unpleasant to Ruke in response. It’s in undercommon though, and through a gag and a bag. Callos nods “Your pay will be a thousand gold to split between yourselves, on receipt of the heirloom jewelry… and uh, I guess another two hundred if my wife is relatively intact. The drow bitch’s gear is in a bag under the table, I suggest you wait until you get her out in the wilds before giving her any, and keep an eye on her.”

Tania blinks looking at the drow ‘bitch’ blinking at what had happened though she saw no sign of her companion. Looking around a bit distracted at the moment to pay attention.

The paladin frowns at the word the merchant uses to refer to the drow. “What is her name?” He’ll collect the drow’s gear since he has the strength to carry it and his own.

“And how, precisely, does she know their location?” Arthur asked.

“She had been caught squabbling with the bandits,” was the paladin’s reply.

Callos “Sin something or other, I can’t pronounce them. They mostly just call her Sin around the guardhouse.” The guard behind Callos nods “Sindrathiir was what she called herself.” There’s a bag with some leather armor, thieves tools, a short sword, a light crossbow, and some bolts there, as well as a cloak and hat.

Callos chuckles “Yeah, she was one of them, then got in a fight over some loot or whatever, and abandoned them. She was captured on the road north of town, near the foothills. I’m afraid they interrogated her rather heavily before I was able to contact the lord to see if they had anyone who could shed light on this issue. It seems the carrot of freedom was more effective than the stick of another couple weeks in the guard’s care.”

Darius walks in more tired than a rundown farm mule and sweating profusely “I-I’m here.. From…the…Tower..” going to a chair and leaning upon it for support.

Ruke has ‘absorbed’ the information as much as he could. He nods to show that he followed along, then looks to the newcomer and offers him a handshake in greeting.

Tania was listening nodding her head gently as she thought it all over, there was alot to think about looking at the other members. nodding her head before turning to see Darius with a grin “There you are~ your late, ill fill you in on the way”

He looks a bit perplexed at the forthcoming attitude of the man in front of him and shakes Ruke’s hands while nodding to Tania " Nice to meet you, hopefully I’ll understand whats going on enough to help"

“Indeed!” and Arthur rises to his feet! “So we have gathered together, then? Ready to begin our rescue operation? Time is of the essence, after all!”

The paladin responds, “Aye, nice to meet you. It is best we make haste.”

Sin mumbles something. No one’s even taken the bag off her head. There’s also the matter to the keys to her shackles, which the guard hands over to whomever takes custody of the drow.

The paladin will take care of this. Bag comes off, shackles remain on.

“… Aye, You’d be right abo- Why is that woman-…I’ll ask later” Deciding not to think too hard again as it’d hurt his brain, Darius falls silent.

She’s pretty enough for a drow. Her white hair is cropped short, her eyes a blood red. She nods gratefully, the gag still tied tight. She blinks and flinches at the light.

He’ll remove the gag as well, “Do you prefer the bag while we’re still out in daylight?”

Tania stand nodding her head to the other men “I am Tania, Summoner of the Blue Tower…. it is a pleasure to meet you both” bowing her head before she looks over to the drow more then a little surprised to see the face “Are you sure its safe?”

Sin curses in undercommon once the gag is removed, then snarls a bit “No, I don’t want a bag over my head, just unshackle me and give me my cloak and we’ll be alright.. the sooner we get out of this filthy city the better.” She tugs at those chains ineffectually.

“You may call me Ruke Vassar. And yes, Sin here will be perfectly safe to work with. Won’t you, Sin?” He asks, removing her shackles and offering her cloak to her. The rest of the drow’s gear stays with him for the time being.

“….. I don’t know if thats a good idea, maybe we should wait until after we are out there” Darius finally catches a full breath, heartrate slowing down " Oh nevermind.."

Ruke seems to be the overly trusting sort!

Sin rubs at her wrists as they are uncuffed, then moves to snatch the cloak away, drawing it about her lithe form. She draws the hood up “Right, we’ll be heading north of here to the hills. It’s a fair walk… about an hour or so out of the north gate.” About as far north as the blue tower is south…

“An invigorating walk is good for the heart!” Ruke encourages, preparing to leave.

And so, without further ado, the hastily assembled team sets forth from the Weary Wyvern, bound on a quest from Callos of the merchant’s guild to recover his precious family heirloom jewelry (and maybe his wife, if she’s lucky) from bandits operating out of an unknown abandoned mine somewhere north of the city of Althem. It’s late afternoon when they set out, but according to their ‘guide’ Sindrathiir it shouldn’t take more than an hour to reach the place. If all goes well they may be back in time for supper. If all goes poorly they may never see the light of the next dawn. The party thus far? Ruke, Paladin of the Temple of Law. Arthur Grevane, Mad Bomber from the University of Althem. Tania and Darius, Summoners from the Accursed Tower of the Blue Mage (The Blue Tower), and Sindrathiir, Drowess Bandit.

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Welcome to Legends of the Fail
An old school, build as you play campaign.

Our adventurers start out small but will soon grow to shape the world they live in. Either that or die horribly trying. Very horribly. We’re talking full on gore and terror here.

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