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DDEX 1-9: Outlaws of the Iron Route (5e Adventurer's League)

Game Master bookrat

An adventure for 1st through 4th levels.
Handout 1 - Wanted Poster
Handout 2 - Map of Phlan Region
Handout 3 - King's Pyre (numbered version)
Handout 4 - Order of the Gauntlet Note
Handout 5 - Warning of the Zhentarim

Current Combat Map (combat over)


1 to 50 of 421 << first < prev | 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | next > last >>

Part 1: Riot in Phlan

Cold rain falls over Podol Plaza, and a throng of citizens and merchants have gathered before the Stojanow Gate in protest of recent banditry and politics that has starved Phlan of vital supplies. A line of Black Fist militia
is all that stands between them and Valjevo Keep.

“Does the Lord Regent fear this wild dog?” a bedraggled citizen yells, a soggy notice clenched in her fist. “Are his hired goons cowed by their own castoffs?”

Her accusations are joined with angry jeers.

Please see Handout 1, linked at the top of this page

Please check in with an opening post. Your characters are in the city of Phlan for whatever reason you decide, and you all happen to be in the same plaza on this cold rainy day.


Male Human Fighter (Battlemaster) 3 | AC: 15 | Init: +3 | Saves: S +2, D +3, C +4, I +0, W +2, Ch +0 | Per: 14 | Insp: Yes | HP 28/28 | Battle Dice 4/4 | Maneuver DC: 13 | Surge: Yes | 2nd Wind: Yes | Status: Ok.

Shoo arrives in the plaza in time to witness the protests. He's been out for a bit and doesn't know what's going on, so he's about to ask a random citizen... when he finds a known face.

-Clyde?- he asks. -Clyde, so glad to see you! You alright? Watcha doing here? And what's going on?


Male Human | Fighter 2 | HP 14/20 | AC 16 | Init +0 | Move: 30 | AS 1/1 | SW 1/1. Saves: S+5 D=0(+2 shield master) C+4 I+1 W+1 C=0 | Passive Per 13 | Status: Normal | Inspiration: Yes

Clyde shakes the dust from his hair as he strafes through the crowd. He turns when he heard the familiar voice of Shoo.

"Shoo!? Old friend. I'm doing much better than... well, the last time you saw me. How have you been? I'm not sure what's happening. A riot perhaps?" Clyde heaves his heavy backpack higher up his shoulder as he squints to make out the picture on the wanted poster.

Sounds like quite the unpleasant fellow.

Clyde scans the crowd and notices a familiar figure looming over the rest of the crowd. An instant flash of panic grips his chest and he sinks back into the crowd to catch his breath.


Male Goliath Barbarian (Path of the Totem Warrior) 3 | Rages: 1/3 | HP: 20/32 | AC: 14 | Init + 2 | HD: 2/3 | Saves: Str + 5 Con + 4 Dex + 2 Int + 0 Wis + 1 Cha -1 | Perception + 3 Passive: 13 | Status: Normal | Inspiration: ( ) |

Ragnar, towering over almost all in the crowd, studies a notice in his hands with a frown.
Grey Patriots? They call tormenting their fellows patriotic? Fools.
He then glances about the crowd.
And what do these folk think will come of this? The militia likely put out this notice because they're out of their depth.

Perception: 1d20 + 3 ⇒ (19) + 3 = 22
You cannot hide from Ragnar!

He spies a familiar figure poorly attempting to hide among the crowd. He strides through the press like one would walk through a field of wheat, with the people either wisely moving out of his way, or being effortlessly bumped aside by his mass. He stands over Clyde and lets out a laugh.
"By the gods, not even death could keep you down! It's good to see you among the living my friend!" he bellows above the angry cries of the mob, clapping Clyde on the back, perhaps a bit harder than he intended.

He then sees Shoo attempting to get Clyde's attention.
"And Shoo! It's good to see you friend! You look... different from what I recall, but well!" He extends his hand for Shoo to shake.
"What brings you two to Phlan?"


Male Human Varient | Battle Master Fighter 4 | Superiority Dice 4/4 | Maneuver DC: 14 | Action Surge unused | Second Wind used | HP: 34/36 | AC: 16 | Init +4 | Saves: S+1, D+4, Co+4, I+1, W+2, Ch0 | Pass Perc: 14 | Status: normal | Insp: 0

A hooded figure watches both the crowd of protesters and the rowdy men who carry themselves as adventurers with equal interest. A bounty hunter by trade, he had heard through his contacts that there was a bounty out for the leader of the "Grey Patriots" Folk who have to name themselves patriots are anything but... he thinks to himself, again scanning the crowd.

Though he makes not efforts to hide himself, the mottled blacks and greys of his garb do well enough for most common onlookers, though he sees the gaze of the massive goliath settle on him for a moment before he greeted his friends. Wonder if they are also here for the job? he ponders, watching the jovial interactions of the others.


Male Human | Fighter 2 | HP 14/20 | AC 16 | Init +0 | Move: 30 | AS 1/1 | SW 1/1. Saves: S+5 D=0(+2 shield master) C+4 I+1 W+1 C=0 | Passive Per 13 | Status: Normal | Inspiration: Yes

Clyde steps forward to catch himself from falling over after the Goliath's hand connects with his spine. He coughs and heaves, attempting to pull air back into his lungs. "Uh, h-hello Ragnar. I really... really didn't expect to see you here."


Male Goliath Barbarian (Path of the Totem Warrior) 3 | Rages: 1/3 | HP: 20/32 | AC: 14 | Init + 2 | HD: 2/3 | Saves: Str + 5 Con + 4 Dex + 2 Int + 0 Wis + 1 Cha -1 | Perception + 3 Passive: 13 | Status: Normal | Inspiration: ( ) |

Ragnar pats Clyde on the back much lighter as he coughs.
"Same to you, young one! Thought for sure I'd see you again in Valhalla! Glad to see the Harpers brought you back to us."
I'm assuming we would have brought your body to the Harpers after the last mission


Male Human | Fighter 2 | HP 14/20 | AC 16 | Init +0 | Move: 30 | AS 1/1 | SW 1/1. Saves: S+5 D=0(+2 shield master) C+4 I+1 W+1 C=0 | Passive Per 13 | Status: Normal | Inspiration: Yes

"Death wasn't that bad actually. As long as you stay away from that bearded lightning swan that wants to fornicate with everything..."


Male Human Fighter (Battlemaster) 3 | AC: 15 | Init: +3 | Saves: S +2, D +3, C +4, I +0, W +2, Ch +0 | Per: 14 | Insp: Yes | HP 28/28 | Battle Dice 4/4 | Maneuver DC: 13 | Surge: Yes | 2nd Wind: Yes | Status: Ok.

-Hey, Ragnar!

Shoo catches both of the men's eyes when they look at the poster and takes a look at it himself.

-[i]Oh, well, some nice gold won't hurt me, right?[/b]

-I was wandering about a bit and ended up here looking for a job. Just arrived, so I don't get what's going on with this angry mob. Any idea?


Half-Elf Cleric 1 | HP 1/8 | AC 10 | Saves: S+0, D+0, C+0, I+3, W+5, Ch+3 | Init +0 | Spell DC 13 | Spells: 1st: 2/2 | Pass Perc 15 | Status: Norm | Insp: Yes |

An older, bearded Half-elf wrapped in a wool cloak slowly navigates through the crowd toward the board. Studying the poster for a couple moments while caressing his beard, the man hefts his pack onto the small space he occupies. He leans over his pack to give it cover from the rain and pulls out what looks like a map and another paper. After more beardstroking, nodding, and mumbling he replaces the papers and hefts his pack back over his shoulder. Again he slowly navigates through the crowd, this time toward the militia. Upon reaching the closest militia person he asks, "Umm. 'xcuse me. Vere might Mantor's library be? I travel from long to study at library," his words heavy with a thick accent.


With tensions high, it isn’t long before trouble flares. You soon find yoursepves caught in the middle of a riot.

Something soft and stinking flies through the air and splatters on one of the guard’s armor. He and the others charge forward, cudgels drawn, and the plaza erupts into chaos. Mobs form,
turning on one another.

A covered merchant wagon nearby is targeted by a group of five men armed with simple clubs. “These goods are going to waste,” snarls one of the thugs as he clambers atop the wagon. “Let us take them off your hands!”

The five men start robbing the merchant as he stands by yelling for help. Please! Guards! Someone! Help! They're taking my livelihood! They're no better than the Grey Patriots!

The guards nearby are occupied with the rest of the riot, and either do not hear the merchant or are unable to help.

Begin Initiative!
Clyde: 1d20 + 0 ⇒ (9) + 0 = 9
Ragnar: 1d20 + 2 ⇒ (8) + 2 = 10
Rath: 1d20 + 4 ⇒ (11) + 4 = 15
Sashah: 1d20 + 0 ⇒ (1) + 0 = 1
Sati: 1d20 + 3 ⇒ (11) + 3 = 14
Shadoo: 1d20 + 0 ⇒ (15) + 0 = 15
Shoo: 1d20 + 3 ⇒ (4) + 3 = 7
Commoners: 1d20 + 0 ⇒ (14) + 0 = 14

Round 1
Rath
Shadoo
Sati
Commoner 1
Commoner 2
Commoner 3
Commoner 4
Commoner 5
Ragnar
Clyde
Shoo
Sashah

Special: Each successful DC 15 Charisma (Persuasion or Intimidation) check will cause one of the enemies to stop fighting.

DM Notice: Game has officially begun. Please post within 24 hours of this post or risk being botted. This is my first official Push post. I will notify you for every Push post and when the 24 hour countdown begins.


Male Dragonborn Paladin 1 | Divine Sense 4/4 | Breath Weapon 1/1 | Lay on Hands 5/5 | Damage Resistance: Cold | HP 11/11 | AC 18 | Init +0 | Saves Str +3 Dex +0 Con +1 Int -1 Wis +3 Cha +5 | Passive Perception 11 | Status Normal | Insp 1/1

Sorry! I didn't notice it had started already! Nice to be here, guys. I'm still learning 5E though :) Hehe.

The dragonborn paladin approaches. While he keeps a low profile most of the time, the fact the bandits were attacking the wagon got him to get involved.

You! Stop it in the name of Tyr! - he yelled, drawing his weapon in a menacing way - Hereby orders Shadoo, His Paladin!

Intimidation: 1d20 + 5 ⇒ (16) + 5 = 21

Not sure how it works here in terms of actions/economy :)


Male Human Varient | Battle Master Fighter 4 | Superiority Dice 4/4 | Maneuver DC: 14 | Action Surge unused | Second Wind used | HP: 34/36 | AC: 16 | Init +4 | Saves: S+1, D+4, Co+4, I+1, W+2, Ch0 | Pass Perc: 14 | Status: normal | Insp: 0

Rath darts toward the merchant, bow coming to his hand and arrow nocking. Shouting out to the hoodlums, he states And the air you breath goes to waste as well, perhaps I should add a few ventilation holes to help it escape. Now, apologize to the man and be gone before my fingers get to tired to hold this string.

Intimidate: 1d20 ⇒ 20


Male Goliath Barbarian (Path of the Totem Warrior) 3 | Rages: 1/3 | HP: 20/32 | AC: 14 | Init + 2 | HD: 2/3 | Saves: Str + 5 Con + 4 Dex + 2 Int + 0 Wis + 1 Cha -1 | Perception + 3 Passive: 13 | Status: Normal | Inspiration: ( ) |

Ragnar rests his greatsword on his shoulder, walks up to one of the looters, and just stares at him/her.
Intimidate: 1d20 + 2 ⇒ (14) + 2 = 16


Male Human | Fighter 2 | HP 14/20 | AC 16 | Init +0 | Move: 30 | AS 1/1 | SW 1/1. Saves: S+5 D=0(+2 shield master) C+4 I+1 W+1 C=0 | Passive Per 13 | Status: Normal | Inspiration: Yes

Clyde runs behind one of the thieves and tosses his heavy pack at their feet, attempting to trip them up. He unsheathes his longsword and smirks. "Not worth it, folks."


Male Human Fighter (Battlemaster) 3 | AC: 15 | Init: +3 | Saves: S +2, D +3, C +4, I +0, W +2, Ch +0 | Per: 14 | Insp: Yes | HP 28/28 | Battle Dice 4/4 | Maneuver DC: 13 | Surge: Yes | 2nd Wind: Yes | Status: Ok.

Shoo approaches the merchant's wagon, bow and arrow in hand, and points at one of the thugs.

-I guess with your colleagues running you are going to be sensitive and save your life, aren't you?

In any case, seeing what happened, he has an eye on everything just in case - specially on his own bag.

Perception: 1d20 + 4 ⇒ (18) + 4 = 22


Half-Elf Cleric 1 | HP 1/8 | AC 10 | Saves: S+0, D+0, C+0, I+3, W+5, Ch+3 | Init +0 | Spell DC 13 | Spells: 1st: 2/2 | Pass Perc 15 | Status: Norm | Insp: Yes |

The old half-elf begins some short chanting and the ground begins shaking ever so slightly.

casts Thaumaturgy


Female Human Monk 1 || AC 15 | HP 9/9 | Init +3 | Saves: S+1 D+5 C+1 I+1 W+2 Ch+1 | Pass.Perc. 14 || Cure Wounds 1/1 | Insp: Yes || Status: Normal

In one corner of the plaza a young human woman, dressed in brightly colorful clothes, had been looking worriedly at the poster as the crowds gathered around it. As the assembled people began to turn on each other she looked around in a moment of panic, then saw the thugs trying to loot a merchant's wagon.

"Stand down, you fools," Sati calls out, moving to grab the arm of the nearest man. "Just because times are hard is no excuse to throw away all civility."

Does the persuasion check use our action?
Persuasion: 1d20 + 1 ⇒ (6) + 1 = 7


The charisma check does not use your action.


Female Human Monk 1 || AC 15 | HP 9/9 | Init +3 | Saves: S+1 D+5 C+1 I+1 W+2 Ch+1 | Pass.Perc. 14 || Cure Wounds 1/1 | Insp: Yes || Status: Normal

Ah, ok. In that case...

Seeing the man undeterred by her attempt to defuse the situation, Sati steps around him, trying to place herself between him and his attempted loot. "And if you won't be fair to others," she adds, "then why should we be fair to you?" As she lifts one slippered foot and aims a surprisingly swift kick at his midsection

unarmed strike: 1d20 + 5 ⇒ (18) + 5 = 23
Non-lethal damage: 1d4 + 3 ⇒ (2) + 3 = 5


Round 1

Rath and Shadoo "convince" two of the robber to stop what they're doing. Sati fails to convince one, and decided to punch him instead, knocking him unconscious.

The remaining two robbers continue to grab as much as they can, realizing they'll soon have to flee.

Ragnar's threats also work, and one starts to book it, but not before everyone else has a chance to react to his thievery.

Clyde's warning is well founded.

Shoo keeps and eye out, and sees one guard looking your way.

Sashah makes the ground rumble with his words of threats, giving everyone advantage on an intimidation next round.

Round 2
Rath
Shadoo
Sati
Commoner 1 (gone)
Commoner 2 (gone)
Commoner 3 (unconscious)
Commoner 4 (ready to flee, will run in Round 2)
Commoner 5
Ragnar
Clyde
Shoo
Sashah

This is a Push Post; please respond within 24 hours or risk being botted.


Male Human | Fighter 2 | HP 14/20 | AC 16 | Init +0 | Move: 30 | AS 1/1 | SW 1/1. Saves: S+5 D=0(+2 shield master) C+4 I+1 W+1 C=0 | Passive Per 13 | Status: Normal | Inspiration: Yes

Clyde turns to the man ready to flee and warns him with a sigh, " If you try to run off with anything I swear to every deity in the pantheon that you'll find out what the pommel of my sword tastes like."

Intimidate: 1d20 ⇒ 4
Intimidate: 1d20 ⇒ 11


Half-Elf Cleric 1 | HP 1/8 | AC 10 | Saves: S+0, D+0, C+0, I+3, W+5, Ch+3 | Init +0 | Spell DC 13 | Spells: 1st: 2/2 | Pass Perc 15 | Status: Norm | Insp: Yes |

The old half-elf begins chanting what sounds to be the same chant and his eyes glow with a bright blue radiance.

casts Thaumaturgy


Female Human Monk 1 || AC 15 | HP 9/9 | Init +3 | Saves: S+1 D+5 C+1 I+1 W+2 Ch+1 | Pass.Perc. 14 || Cure Wounds 1/1 | Insp: Yes || Status: Normal

Round 2
Sati sees the robber attempting to flee and calls after him, "Drop it! Or I can do the same thing to you as I did to your friend here," pointing down at the man who fell unconscious at her feet.

Intimidation: 1d20 + 1 ⇒ (8) + 1 = 9
Intimidation advantage: 1d20 + 1 ⇒ (12) + 1 = 13

If he's not sufficiently intimidated she runs after him to prevent him from getting away.


Male Human Varient | Battle Master Fighter 4 | Superiority Dice 4/4 | Maneuver DC: 14 | Action Surge unused | Second Wind used | HP: 34/36 | AC: 16 | Init +4 | Saves: S+1, D+4, Co+4, I+1, W+2, Ch0 | Pass Perc: 14 | Status: normal | Insp: 0

Sighing deeply, Rath turns toward the fleeing robber, loosing an arrow. Wrong choice.

Attack: 1d20 + 8 ⇒ (6) + 8 = 141d8 + 4 ⇒ (3) + 4 = 7


Don't forget, folks, that you can also take an action in addition to trying to intimidate. I'm not sure if that's an official rule, but that's my call for this encounter.

Round 2 (in progress)

Rath looses an arrow, and it lodged into the back of the fleeing man. He falls to the ground, blood starting to seep out of his wound.

Nearby, a guard says, rather loudly, Did that man just kill someone? Guards, on me!

You see some guards start to gather and make their way towards you.

Round 2 Initiative Counter
Rath
Shadoo <-- we are here
Sati
Commoner 1 (gone)
Commoner 2 (gone)
Commoner 3 (unconscious)
Commoner 4 (dying)
Commoner 5
Ragnar
Clyde
Shoo
Sashah


Half-Elf Cleric 1 | HP 1/8 | AC 10 | Saves: S+0, D+0, C+0, I+3, W+5, Ch+3 | Init +0 | Spell DC 13 | Spells: 1st: 2/2 | Pass Perc 15 | Status: Norm | Insp: Yes |

Changing my action for round 2

The old half-elf looks as though he were going to cast another spell but reacts to seeing a man put down by an arrow. He quickly moves toward the man reaching to a side pocket drawing many cloths and begins to stop the man's bleeding.

Medicine: 1d20 + 5 ⇒ (15) + 5 = 20


Male Human Fighter (Battlemaster) 3 | AC: 15 | Init: +3 | Saves: S +2, D +3, C +4, I +0, W +2, Ch +0 | Per: 14 | Insp: Yes | HP 28/28 | Battle Dice 4/4 | Maneuver DC: 13 | Surge: Yes | 2nd Wind: Yes | Status: Ok.

-Well, I guess that merchant can consider himself helped. The thieves are fleeing and the one remaining is about to flee. Time to dissapear.

Seeing the guard is coming and he probably will have to respond for the other bowman's acts, Shoo tries to lose himself in the streets to avoid a punishment he doesn't think he deserves.

I don't know what to roll. Stealth? Deception? You tell me (or roll for me if you prefer), please.


Male Human | Fighter 2 | HP 14/20 | AC 16 | Init +0 | Move: 30 | AS 1/1 | SW 1/1. Saves: S+5 D=0(+2 shield master) C+4 I+1 W+1 C=0 | Passive Per 13 | Status: Normal | Inspiration: Yes

Seeing the arrow in the commoners back and the guards approaching, Clyde begins to yell out, "Whoa whoa! We meant to spook them a bit, not kill them! Guards! This man is hurt bad. Please, call a doctor! Clyde waves to the guards and kneels down next to the injured man. He glances up at Rath and widens his eyes. He darts them to the side, indicating Rath should run.

Clyde drops his sword next to him and unsheathes a dagger from his belt. He gets close to the half-elf mage, "Do you need any assistance? I can break off the shaft or pry the arrowhead out. I may also have some alcohol in my bag. Oh! The healer's kits!"


Combat Over.

As Sashah and Clyde move to help the fallen thief, the last one decides his life is better off alive, and he runs as fast as he can, leaving behind whatever it was he was trying to grab. One of the guards approaching your group starts running after him.

Between yourself and and the Black Fist (the name of the local guard outfit), the riot is quelled and the square becomes clear. A few rioters are in custody of the Black Fist and being taken away.

The merchant walks up to address his saviors. Thank you all very much for coming to my rescue. I thought my business would be ruined! I already have enough problems with the Grey Patriots and that blasted kobold gang on the Iron Route.

As he speaks, a few Black Fist appear o investigate the injured man. The merchant meets them, and after a few words and a less-than-sibtle exchange of a few coins, the Black Fist change their demeanor. The guard who originally spoke up and called to arms says, I bear witness to this man's thievery and rioting. Thank you citizens for your assistance. Please carry on and have a good day. With that, they take the now-bandaged man away.

The merchant says, My name is Branden Yil. Will all of you please join me inside my wagon; I have an offer for you I'd like to discuss.

Not a push post; will be updating sometime in the next 12 hours with the assumption you join him. You may roleplay any of the current scene if you like.


Male Human Fighter (Battlemaster) 3 | AC: 15 | Init: +3 | Saves: S +2, D +3, C +4, I +0, W +2, Ch +0 | Per: 14 | Insp: Yes | HP 28/28 | Battle Dice 4/4 | Maneuver DC: 13 | Surge: Yes | 2nd Wind: Yes | Status: Ok.

After a few prudential minutes have passed, Shoo turns left in one of the streets and appears again near the market wagon. He greets everyone as if nothing had happened.

-Hi!- He takes a quick look around and, after inquiring, explains his situation -Have the guards left already? Sorry I dissapeared, but the matter seemed finished and they didn't look very friendly...

After the merchant talks about an offer, Shoo is quite willing to follow him inside, and is somewhat curious about those thugs the poster already mentioned.

-Sorry, sir, the name's Shoo. Who are those 'Grey Patriots'? They don't seem to be much welcomed here, are they?


Half-Elf Cleric 1 | HP 1/8 | AC 10 | Saves: S+0, D+0, C+0, I+3, W+5, Ch+3 | Init +0 | Spell DC 13 | Spells: 1st: 2/2 | Pass Perc 15 | Status: Norm | Insp: Yes |

"Now hold on! I vas not finished patching him! If he jostled too much that bandage will loose!" The old half-elf watches them walk away, spits and mutters "Cursed, corrupt, Banites!"

Turning his attention back to the people now around him, he takes a few measured breaths and seems to relax slightly.

Quote:
The merchant says, My name is Branden Yil. Will all of you please join me inside my wagon; I have an offer for you I'd like to discuss.

The half-elf stands up and brushes himself off and what looks like a holy symbol comes out from beneath his robe, tethered around his neck. The symbol has a circle of seven stars in a ring, with a red mist rising toward (or flowing from) the top star. He tucks the symbol back into his robes and asks no particular person, "I am villing to hear offer, but I am scholar looking for Mantor's Library. Might anyone know vere it located?"


THE MERCHANTS OFFER

Braden thanks you for joining him inside his wagon. As I said, my name is Braden Yil. I'm a retainer for House Cardona*.

I'm in some desperate need of help. My own bodyguards have abandoned me and I must get my goods across the Iron Route. It's the only pass available since the storms started. If you're willing to fight for justice, then House Cardona is willing to pay.

To Shoo, he says, The Grey Patriots were a group who rebelled against the Black Fists - themselves charged with defending and protection the kingdom of Phlan.

Their leader, the disgraced Knight Sahnd Krulek, was once charged with the attempted assassination of Lord Regent Ector Brahms. For some reason that I'm unaware, a sizable portion of the Black Fists all quit at the same time and helped him escape his sentence. Since then, they've been robbing merchants assigned to noble houses along the trade routes. They had a reputation as so-called decent criminals, as they never killed anyone and only robbed from the noble houses.

However, recently, they've gone from robbing the rich to robbing everyone. And they've racked up a few deaths in the past few months. Now they're little more than the bandits and criminals they once swore to pursue.

But they're not the only problem. Within the past few weeks, a second group of bandits have been robbing people along the Iron Route - a group of kobolds. My sources in House Cardona have informed me that they're lead by an insane dragonborn sorcerer who claims to draw power from Tiamat himself. They capture and sacrifice their victims.

Fortunately, these two groups have been more focused on each other the past few days, so it may be a little safer to cross, but I still don't have any bodyguards and I'm not willing to leave without protection.

To Sashah, he says, Yes, the library is a few blocks away, but is it urgent? You seem capable and brave, willing to put yourself at risk to help a merchant in need. Would you be willing to go a little further?

Key Points from this conversation so far:

• Storms have driven trade inland, and caravans must use the Iron Route—a perilous road that skirts the northern coast of the Moonsea.

• A number of caravans have been lost to the Gray Patriots, a group of highwaymen led by the disgraced Knight Sahnd Krulek.

• Sahnd Krulek escaped from Stojanow Gate after being arrested, tried, and sentenced to hang for plotting against Lord Regent Ector Brahms.

• House Cadorna recently learned that a second group of outlaws has begun operating along the Iron Route: a legion of kobolds headed by an insane dragonborn who routinely sacrifices her victims to dark gods.

• The dragonborn sorcerer is said to draw her powers from Tiamat, the god of chromatic dragons.

• A bloody feud exists between the two outlaws. The merchants are thankful for this dispute, as it has led to more caravans passing safely through the Iron Route.

Note: there are more key points that can be brought out with further conversation.

*House Cardona Special Player Trivia:
Players who enjoyed Strategic Simulations Inc.’s 1988 Pool of Radiance computer game may recall the traitorous councilor Porphyrys Cadorna, who betrayed the heroes to seize control of the mystical Pool of Radiance.

Possessed by the evil spirit Tyranthraxus, the councilor drained the pool of its power and fled the city. Two hundred years have passed since those terrible events, yet House Cadorna still abides. Braden Yil is an employee of the house, but like most others, he has no knowledge of its dark past.

This is a Push Post. Please respond within 24 hours or risk being skipped for roleplay. If everyone posts before then, then we can advance the story more quickly.


Male Human Varient | Battle Master Fighter 4 | Superiority Dice 4/4 | Maneuver DC: 14 | Action Surge unused | Second Wind used | HP: 34/36 | AC: 16 | Init +4 | Saves: S+1, D+4, Co+4, I+1, W+2, Ch0 | Pass Perc: 14 | Status: normal | Insp: 0

Rath hung near the edge of the wagon, listening to the merchants tale, barely containing a snicker at the comment about justice. So you are willing to pay for us to escort your cargo through a contested area. An area we may come upon the Grey Patriots, and more specifically, their leader who has a reward for his head... The archer strokes his beard in thought.How much are you offering, and how long will this trip take?


Male Goliath Barbarian (Path of the Totem Warrior) 3 | Rages: 1/3 | HP: 20/32 | AC: 14 | Init + 2 | HD: 2/3 | Saves: Str + 5 Con + 4 Dex + 2 Int + 0 Wis + 1 Cha -1 | Perception + 3 Passive: 13 | Status: Normal | Inspiration: ( ) |

Ragnar accepts the merchant's offer to join him in his wagon. He hangs back for everyone else to climb in, stripping off his backpack. He places his backpack on the floor of the wagon in front of the entrance, and remains outside with a hand on his coin purse, poking his head into the wagon. As silly as this may look, this is, in his opinion, less silly than trying to squeeze himself into a space where an average human can't even stand normally.
He listens quietly to the merchant's proposal, and once he is done talking, Ragnar pipes up.
"I have a few questions. First, why did your bodyguards leave you?"
Ragnar waits for a satisfactory answer before moving on to the next question.
"Any word on how many Gray patriots and kobolds we may be dealing with?"
"Is it known why Krulek made an attempt on the Lord Regent?"
"Why haven't the Black Fist gotten help from the noble houses to take down the bandits?"


Half-Elf Cleric 1 | HP 1/8 | AC 10 | Saves: S+0, D+0, C+0, I+3, W+5, Ch+3 | Init +0 | Spell DC 13 | Spells: 1st: 2/2 | Pass Perc 15 | Status: Norm | Insp: Yes |

So, as knowledge is the entire purpose of this character and I had actually intended for Sasha to be here to study the Pool of Radiance from the local library, with the gm's permission (and with a history check?), I would like to answer some of the questions. (ooc I have done research on Phlan so that I might play my character better)

History: 1d20 + 7 ⇒ (13) + 7 = 20

Edit: Sasha being happy to be corrected of course


Male Human Fighter (Battlemaster) 3 | AC: 15 | Init: +3 | Saves: S +2, D +3, C +4, I +0, W +2, Ch +0 | Per: 14 | Insp: Yes | HP 28/28 | Battle Dice 4/4 | Maneuver DC: 13 | Surge: Yes | 2nd Wind: Yes | Status: Ok.

Shoo has some questions, but Ragnar's deep and thunderous voice speaks many of them before he can even think. One, though, is stil unshot.

-Uh... ehm... and what's the reason for the... riots?

Apart from that, and given what this "Rath"pointed out, the thing seems easy money, and they might as well free the region from some potential risks.


Sashah wrote:

So, as knowledge is the entire purpose of this character and I had actually intended for Sasha to be here to study the Pool of Radiance from the local library, with the gm's permission (and with a history check?), I would like to answer some of the questions. (ooc I have done research on Phlan so that I might play my character better)

[dice=History]1d20+7

Edit: Sasha being happy to be corrected of course

Yup! Go ahead! If you need me to give you specific answers, please PM me. Otherwise, have at it.


Male Dragonborn Paladin 1 | Divine Sense 4/4 | Breath Weapon 1/1 | Lay on Hands 5/5 | Damage Resistance: Cold | HP 11/11 | AC 18 | Init +0 | Saves Str +3 Dex +0 Con +1 Int -1 Wis +3 Cha +5 | Passive Perception 11 | Status Normal | Insp 1/1

Shadoo just keeps his silence, visibly worried about the people who got hurt. Yet, he was also curious about the conversation and answers, so tried to keep up and pay attention.


Half-Elf Cleric 1 | HP 1/8 | AC 10 | Saves: S+0, D+0, C+0, I+3, W+5, Ch+3 | Init +0 | Spell DC 13 | Spells: 1st: 2/2 | Pass Perc 15 | Status: Norm | Insp: Yes |

Incoming wall of text

While questions are being asked, the half-elf quietly takes out a handful of papers from his pack.

Clearing his throat to get attention he interjects, "I believe I might be able to shed light on situation. I have been researching city of Phlan and have gathered brief history."

Awaiting quiet attention from the others he begins, "Phlan vas founded by merchants in 367 DR as trading post between Myth Drannor and Dragonspire. It soon destroyed in 400 by Dark Alliance. In 712 Milsor Valjevo rebuilt city and commissioned building of, vhat has since called Valjevo Castle. In 1303 Phlan vas destroyed by ogres and quickly rebuilt. In 1306 the Dragon Run caused yet another destruction of Phlan as vell." He takes a swig from his waterskin and continues.

"In 1347, a bronze dragon, allegedly named Tyranthraxus, took control of most Phlan. With the help of, who said to be three adventurers, man named Porphyrys Cadorna became the ‘First Councilman’. Together zey defeat Tyranthraxus, however no more record of Porphyrys Cadorna, so it assumed zat he vas lost. During research, and the reason vy I here is zat during zis time and in some sources zere is mention of some 'Pool of Radiance'. I hope to uncover vether zis pool exists, vat role in history of Phlan is, and vat zis pool does. Zat information aside, I continue.

In 1357 Phlan, along with other Moonsea cities vanish from Ferun, zese disappearances said to be the vork of Bane. Whole city. After time, city reappeared, zough at different time zan other Moonsea cities. Only information ve have is zat same three adventurers from ten years prior. I hope find more information on zis as vell.

In 1375 Phlan vas conquered by Zhentil Keep and man called Cvaal Daoran vas put in charge under title ‘Protector of Phlan’. In 1456 Cvaal’s son, Talaric, mysteriously vanished. In 1488 Talaric's son, Anivar, died vis no heirs. So Ector Brahms, commander of ‘Knights of the Black Fist’ took over as Lord Regent and according to all text still rules." the old half-elf looks around at the glazed expressions and asks enthusiastically, "Zat vas helpful, no?"


Question answering time! This is not a push post, just an update to answer questions.

Quote:
So you are willing to pay for us to escort your cargo through a contested area. An area we may come upon the Grey Patriots, and more specifically, their leader who has a reward for his head... How much are you offering?

Hrmm, is the sound Braden makes as he clears his throat. That's not quite right, and I apologise for the confusion. I'd actually like to pay you for the heads of each of the two bandit leaders. 75 Gold per leader. That's on top of the 100 gold reward for Sahnd Krulek.

Special Notice: a DC 15 Charisma (Persuasion) check with a bit of role-playing may increase the 75 to 100. Additionally, a convincing argument may also have 10 GP of that given upfront for supplies.

Quote:
First, why did your bodyguards leave you?

Ever since the bandits started killing people - or capturing and sacrificing them to their gods, my own personal guards believed it was too much of a risk, despite the pay.

Quote:
Any word on how many Gray patriots and kobolds we may be dealing with? Is it known why Krulek made an attempt on the Lord Regent?

Both these questions have the same answer. Braden says, I do not personally know; however, I know someone who does.

A few days ago, a merchant caravan owned by House Sokol was ambushed. They were ready for the attack, however, and drove off the bandits, but not before capturing one.

The bandit was sold to the Grimshackle Brothers, a pair of ne’er-do-wells who run a prison a ways up river. Outlaws sold to the Grimshackles are typically ransomed off to anyone who will pay - be it those who serve the law or those who operate outside of it.

I suggest speaking to the captured outlaw. He is likely the best lead to Krulek and may have information about the dragonborn sorcerer as well.

Quote:
Why haven't the Black Fist gotten help from the noble houses to take down the bandits?

I don't know. All I know is that the Lord Regent refuses to send his Black Fists to stop these bandits, and so it falls on those who have an active interest in the Route’s safety to see the job done.

Quote:
Uh... ehm... and what's the reason for the... riots?

Because people are tired of being waylaid on the Iron Route while the Black Fists do nothing. Especially since the storms have driven all trade inland and the Iron Route is currently our only option

Quote:
how long will this trip take?

The prison is only a few hours up river. We can head up there by foot or river boat, pay off the Grimshaw Brothers to talk to their prisoner, and get back before end of day. I can even cover the expenses of the trip to the prison. But other than that, how long it takes would be up to you and where the Grey Patriots are hiding out.

Key Points from the conversation so far:

• Storms have driven trade inland, and caravans must use the Iron Route—a perilous road that skirts the northern coast of the Moonsea.

• A number of caravans have been lost to the Gray Patriots, a group of highwaymen led by the disgraced Knight Sahnd Krulek.

• Sahnd Krulek escaped from Stojanow Gate after being arrested, tried, and sentenced to hang for plotting against Lord Regent Ector Brahms.

• House Cadorna recently learned that a second group of outlaws has begun operating along the Iron Route: a legion of kobolds headed by an insane dragonborn who routinely sacrifices her victims to dark gods.

• The dragonborn sorcerer is said to draw her powers from Tiamat, the god of chromatic dragons.

• A bloody feud exists between the two outlaws. The merchants are thankful for this dispute, as it has led to more caravans passing safely through the Iron Route.

• The Lord Regent refuses to send his Black Fists to stop these bandits, and so it falls on those who have an active interest in the Route’s safety to see the job done.

• Recently, a merchant caravan owned by House Sokol was ambushed. They were ready for the attack, however, and drove off the bandits, but not before capturing one.

• The bandit was sold to the Grimshackle Brothers, a pair of ne’er-do-wells who run a prison a ways up river. Outlaws sold to the Grimshackles are typically ransomed off to anyone who will pay—be it those who serve the law or those who operate outside of it.

• Braden suggests speaking to the captured outlaw. He is likely the best lead to Krulek and may have information about the dragonborn sorcerer as well.


Male Goliath Barbarian (Path of the Totem Warrior) 3 | Rages: 1/3 | HP: 20/32 | AC: 14 | Init + 2 | HD: 2/3 | Saves: Str + 5 Con + 4 Dex + 2 Int + 0 Wis + 1 Cha -1 | Perception + 3 Passive: 13 | Status: Normal | Inspiration: ( ) |
Sashah wrote:
Incoming wall of text

Ragnar listens for a bit, and once he realizes that it's going to be a history lesson, he digs a whetstone out of his bag, and goes about sharpening his greatsword.

Merchant wrote:
That's not quite right, and I apologise for the confusion. I'd actually like to pay you for the heads of each of the two bandit leaders. 75 Gold per leader. That's on top of the 100 gold reward for Sahnd Krulek.

Ragnar ponders this a moment.

"This whole story sounds sketchy, a knight making an attempt on his lord, a good portion of the city guard helping him escape then turning to banditry, then they just decide to start robbing and killing common folk when before they had just harried noble house merchants? I feel it wouldn't be without some kind of cause. I think we should find out this cause before taking heads."


Male Human | Fighter 2 | HP 14/20 | AC 16 | Init +0 | Move: 30 | AS 1/1 | SW 1/1. Saves: S+5 D=0(+2 shield master) C+4 I+1 W+1 C=0 | Passive Per 13 | Status: Normal | Inspiration: Yes

Clyde listens intently, reserving his questions until the end. After all of the other questions are asked, Clyde pipes up. "I agree with Ragnar. I have had a suspicion this man was framed from the moment I saw the wanted poster. This situation reeks of foul play. I want to investigate as well, but you have my word that I'll make sure the roads are safe once more. Well... So long as I still draw breath." Clyde can't help but to glance towards Ragnar for a short moment.


Male Human Fighter (Battlemaster) 3 | AC: 15 | Init: +3 | Saves: S +2, D +3, C +4, I +0, W +2, Ch +0 | Per: 14 | Insp: Yes | HP 28/28 | Battle Dice 4/4 | Maneuver DC: 13 | Surge: Yes | 2nd Wind: Yes | Status: Ok.

-Mmmh... maybe you're right- Shoo thinks, -But we will need prove. We should be very careful, last time we nearly screwed it- he says, remembering their adventure at the Yellow Rose monastery.


Male Human Varient | Battle Master Fighter 4 | Superiority Dice 4/4 | Maneuver DC: 14 | Action Surge unused | Second Wind used | HP: 34/36 | AC: 16 | Init +4 | Saves: S+1, D+4, Co+4, I+1, W+2, Ch0 | Pass Perc: 14 | Status: normal | Insp: 0

Rath grimaces but says nothing as the conversation turns to trying to save the man whose head they are being paid to take, Looks like I've fallen in with a bunch of saints.. he thinks. Lucky me...

So will you be paying for the release of the bandit, or just out trip costs? Also, 75g per head is a sorry fee when you have to split it between seven. Surely the ability to resume trade would be worth more than that? he adds, casually using the tip of an arrow to clean out some dirt from his finger nails.

Persuasion: 1d20 + 2 ⇒ (18) + 2 = 20


Male Dragonborn Paladin 1 | Divine Sense 4/4 | Breath Weapon 1/1 | Lay on Hands 5/5 | Damage Resistance: Cold | HP 11/11 | AC 18 | Init +0 | Saves Str +3 Dex +0 Con +1 Int -1 Wis +3 Cha +5 | Passive Perception 11 | Status Normal | Insp 1/1

The paladin kept his silence, not directly disapproving what the human fighters were saying. Even the negotiations of Rath didn't particularly bothered him - not everybody is in the career for pure adventuring or faith; some actually take their support out of it, so it's natural to seek rewards. Shadoo was the one who chose to make his sacrifices for faith, and he was happy with his choices.

The barbarian had an excellent point, though; this all sounded very strange, and there was probably more to be found than what was being said. Some grand scheme was happening behind the scenes, and he prayed the will of Tyr was going to satiate their curiosity soon.

Let's talk to the captured outlaw. Let's see what he has to say. - finally completed the Dragonborn, trying to not interrupt Rath's negotiations but providing his own input on the issue at matter.


Rath --> Persuasion check successful.

Braden is compelled by your argument, and says, OK, I can grant you 100 Gold per bandit leader, plus you can keep any and all spoils you find. I care more about getting the route clear so all of us merchants can continue our work, whether we are employed by a noble house or run an independent business.

A formal push post will be later today, but I have a four hour drive ahead of me. It may not be until late tonight, PST


Female Human Monk 1 || AC 15 | HP 9/9 | Init +3 | Saves: S+1 D+5 C+1 I+1 W+2 Ch+1 | Pass.Perc. 14 || Cure Wounds 1/1 | Insp: Yes || Status: Normal

After the fighting ended, Sati bows and easily agrees to hear the merchant's offer, introducing herself to the others once they are inside the wagon.

As she listens to the others discussing the situation and during Sashah's impressive lecture on the history of Phlan, she pulls a small hand mirror out of her pockets and checks her appearance, making sure that her braided hair wasn't knocked out of place during the scuffle. (you probably recognize the mirror, carved with the image of a woman's face, as the holy symbol of Sune, goddess of love and beauty)

The details of the reward aren't terribly important to me, but this seems to be a tangled knot of a situation indeed, she says. Whether this man is guilty as has been said or there's something else involved. Let's find this bandit and hopefully we can begin to unravel it.


Part 2. Grimshackle Jail

Faction Assignment - Lord's Alliance:

House Cadorna is a member of the Lords’ Alliance, and as a retainer of the house, Braden passes messages to other members. If any character belongs to this faction, he takes them aside and gives them the following assignment.

Recover the Stolen Necklace. House Cadorna has lost a small fortune to the bandits, but nothing compares to losing the Heart of Myth Drannor, the symbol of the house’s loyalty to the Lords’ Alliance. A character who recovers this emerald necklace for Braden earns one additional renown point.

It takes approximately 3 hours hoofing up the river road; the rain keeps up it's steady flow, keeping you cold and wet. Your only protection comes from treated leather overcoats, if you even have one.

Even as you walk, the fog rolls in from the sea. By the time you arrive to the jail, you're cold and soaked to the bone.

Grimshackle Jail clings like a drowning man to the rocky bank of the Stojanow River. Rotten timbers sag from the tower’s walls, and its outbuildings stand in ruin. Rooks nest in the crenels of the tower’s battlements.

Broad walls encircle the tower’s base, where a large gate house exits onto the towpath. A slatted peephole is fitted at human eye level in the stout, iron-bound door.

This is it, Braden says. Here's 10 gold to help ease negotiations. You'll be on your own, because I'm not going in. Find out what you need to find out.

Options:
1) Knock on the front door
2) Sneak in over the outer wall
3) Something else you think of

This is our first weekend Push Post. Please respond within 48 hours. If everyone responds earlier than that, we can move the game forward sooner.


Male Goliath Barbarian (Path of the Totem Warrior) 3 | Rages: 1/3 | HP: 20/32 | AC: 14 | Init + 2 | HD: 2/3 | Saves: Str + 5 Con + 4 Dex + 2 Int + 0 Wis + 1 Cha -1 | Perception + 3 Passive: 13 | Status: Normal | Inspiration: ( ) |

Lord's Alliance Assignment:
Is there anything else Braden can tell about the necklace, what it looks like, when was it taken, and which group of bandits does he think took it?

Ragnar moves to knock on the door, and before closing within ten feet of the door, he suddenly stops, as if recalling some horrible event. He slowly steps back and faces the party.
"What do you all think? Just knock, or do we want to scout this place out?"

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