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DM Bigrin's Second Darkness

Game Master bigrin42

A foul omen looms in the sky over the scoundrel city of Riddleport, an ominous shadow that defies the light. Is it a curse laid millennia ago by forgotten mages? Does it forewarn against the return of some terrible foe? Or does it portend a terrible


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The town of Riddleport sits on the coast of the Varisian Gulf. Long known as a haven for freebotters and pirates of all stripes, Riddleport has tamed somewhat over the last decade. Crime is not as rampant - or at least not as obvious - and merchants of a more legitimate sort have been setting up in the town. Yet recently a darkness of a different sort appears to have taken root; a strange atmospheric anomoly has settled in the skies above Riddleport. The strange blot has hung in the air for several weeks, moving slowly in what appears to be
a random pattern in the sky. At first assumed to be a dark cloud, it soon became evident that it often moved at odds with the wind. The blot itself resembles nothing so much as a shadow floating in the sky, almost as if some large but unseen object were partially blocking the sun’s rays.

Riddleport already hosts a large number of scholars, but as word of the blot spread, additional investigators from locations as far as Magnimar came to witness the strange phenomenon, their numbers swelling the city’s population. Arguments over the source, nature, and implications of the shadow rage in areas where scholars congregate, but when it became apparent that the shadow was having little direct impact on the city itself, most of Riddleport’s citizens moved on to other concerns, leaving the matter to the bookish sages in order to get on with the business of doing business.

Coincidentally, or perhaps not so much, the owner of the Golden Goblin has decided to run the "gambling event of the decade". "Cheat the Devil and Take His gold" is a catchy name for a tournament, and the event has drawn gamblers, onlookers, pickpockets, and whores from all over Riddleport. Though the gambling hall sits in a rough (even for Riddleport) area of town, the owner has put a lot into the event, repairing the aging building, and making the interior as swanky and over-the-top as possible. Crowds of spectators and gamblers mill about in the street as they file into the building, and you are no exception.

Overseeing the spectacle at the entrance is an over-large statue of a goblin, apparently cast in gold, that stands atop the entry stairs with a mischievous smirk on its wide lips. Just inside the main doors, two sultry beauties scantily clad and wearing faux bat wings, devil horns, and tails play the part of alluring succubi. Both are employees of the Gold Goblin, and they cheerfully register contestants for the tournament and
process entry fees. Armed guards stand nearby to either side of an immense treasure chest into which each patron’s entry fee is added. The guards are on hand to not only protect the money, but to prevent any overzealous admirers from trying to dare the infamous touch of a succubus.

Beyond the registration table is the hall’s game floor. Dozens of gamblers, waitresses dressed as succubi, and bouncers mill about the room, wandering amid tables offering various games while dealers shuffle cards, roll dice, and spin wheels. Moving through this throng are a dozen more of the barely clad, batwinged vixens serving drinks and batting coal-black eyelashes flirtatiously for tips. In the center of the chamber is a short podium atop which sits a massive gold chest affixed to the floor by similarly gaudy chains. On either side of it stands a barechested bouncer in the exotic garb of some foreign sultan’s court. Each stands with muscled arms crossed over his chest and with a naked scimitar of prodigious size tucked through his waistband. High above them, from the hall’s cloth-draped ceiling, hangs a brass birdcage within which crouches a small, bat-winged, pointy-tailed devilish creature that sulks as it gazes over the room and occasionally rattles the bars threateningly.

The entry fee is 1g to get in. The gambling will start shortly, and costs chips, which you can buy from any of the scantily clad succubi. Feel free to go in, introduce your character and get the feel of the place.


F Dwarf Cleric 1

A short figure appears in the entry way to the Golden Goblin. As she steps in, Belana draws back the hood of her cloak, reveling fiery red hair that is her birthright. Her hair is braided to one side and those who are observant will notice a birthmark in the shape of a tankard, behind her left ear.

Stepping up to one of the "Succubi" she pays her 1g entry fee, then moves along into the gambling den.
"May not be the best part of town, but i've seen worse dens. Now to find a seat and try my luck, cayden willing.....but first a drink...." Belana says as a passing tray of mugs and the smell of ale catch her attention.


Male Goblin Wizard 5 (Abjurer); Init +2; Darkvision 60 ft,; Perception +3; AC 13 (touch 13, flatfooted 12; +2 Dex., +1 size); hp 35; Fort +3; Ref +3; Will +5

Anklebiter has been enjoying his time in Riddleport very much!
A strange shadow in the sky, with nothing to cast it!
The huge Cyphergate, with bearded humans that practically stink of magic always close to it!
Strange smells! Sights he has never seen before! So much that is new and exciting!
Really, the only thing that could make it more fun is a big fire, but Anklebiter knows better than to do that. Humans don't like it when you set their homes on fire, and besides, he wants to learn more from this city. It's hard to learn from a big pile of ashes -- provided you survive long enough to sift through those ashes. Anklebiter is one Goblin alone; he wouldn't last that long, unless he has uncanny good luck.

Luck. Anklebiter hears that luck is going to be very necessary for a something or someone called 'the Golden Goblin'. Anklebiter has never seen a golden Goblin before. He's seen green ones and grey ones, he's seen Goblins who take the colour of whatever they're standing in front of, but never golden ones. So he went to see the Golden Goblin, and now he finds himself standing in front of the gambling den and its gleaming statue.

Anklebiter looks at the statue's mischievous smile and giggles quietly. He pulls the raggedy cloak he's worn since his arrival in the city more tightly around himself, making sure the hood and the strips of cloth he's wrapped around his hands are in place. On his shoulder, his furry little companion Minky chitters, annoyed by the way Anklebiter's tugging threatens to make him lose his balance.

'Happy Goblin, smile so wide,' Anklebiter thinks as he starts to scurry up the stairs. 'Stand sparkling tall and beam with pride.'

As he passes the statue, Anklebiter pats it on the foot. 'For luck.' Gambling means very little to the little Goblin, but the statue amused him, and he is curious about what longshanks races consider to be hard gambling. Back home, a good gamble usually involved animals alive and dead, and Goblins in pain.

"Demon lady, oh so nude," Anklebiter rhymes as he sidles up to one of the succubi and holds up a single piece of gold, "take this money, don't be a prude."

Giggling at his rhyme, Anklebiter scurries inside as soon as his money has been accepted, and makes a beeline for the nearest bar.

"Money is the greatest tool," he tells the barkeep as he scrambles onto a bar stool,
"To make even this homely fellow look cool.
From you, good man, I wish to buy a beer.
I'll pay up front, so have no fear!"

Some Knowledge checks to identify the devilish little creature: Knowledge (arcana) 1d20 + 7 ⇒ (1) + 7 = 8; has Anklebiter ever heard of such creatures as things that can be summoned by a Wizard? Knowledge (history) 1d20 + 7 ⇒ (8) + 7 = 15; has Anklebiter ever heard of a creature like this?)


Belana found the beer to be spicy, with just a hint of juniper berries. The quality was middling, but it was cold and free. Looking around her, she saw all manner of people; thugs to nobles, humans to dwarfs, and everything in between. The main gambling hall is large, easily enough to fit a hundred people, though the gaming tables take up a lot of that space. There are also side rooms where she can see some game tables being readied. Apparently, many types of games were going to be played tonight.

-----------------------------

Anklebiter finds himself the object of attention, as many of the patrons aren't too comfortable with a goblin in their midst. At least, not until one succubi said something about "could be our mascot", which got a big laugh from everyone nearby.

As he hopped up to the bar, the human woman behind the counter said "Nice rhyming, chum, but beer's included in your entry. Get one from the girls. The bar's for those looking for more exotic fare." She didn't seem at all put off by his appearance or his race, but she quickly smiled at the person that shoved down beside him and ran through the list of wine and liquor available.


Male(HP:58/58; AC:17/10/17;F+8,R+3,W+2;Init +0;Per +8) Human (Ulfen) Barbarian 5

While on the streets, the golden haired Ulfen cannot help but gawk at the odd shadow in the sky. THe townsfolk may pay it no mind, but he himself is not so jaded. Truly, Riddleport is unlike any place he's been to before. He hears a few schoalers chatting away about it, but they use terms that are strange to him so he does not take part.

Besides, he has another place to be. Wandering through a less savory part of town, he makes sure to keep his pouch covered and an eye out for any pickpockets. Finally he mades his way to the Golden Goblin. With its renevations, it stands out like a scandalous young woman surrounded by old crones.

Lefrik gets in line. While like most of his people, he is tall, he is not as tall as some and the sheer variety of people has caught him off guard. Why, he even thought he saw a goblin, a real one! but he chalks that up to some odd merchant trick to encourage more bussiness. He grins broadly as he sees the women in their fetching horned outfits.
Surely, father and mother would not approve of this place, he realizes.
That makes it all the more appealing.

A gold just to enter into the place seems a bit much, but he pays it. Striding in, he strokes his short beard and looks about. His smile is still in force as he sees a passing tray with another beauty in costume attached to it, "Hail, beautiful one. Have you ale for a thirsty son of the North?"


"Hail yourself. Here's a tall drink for a tall drink. You finish that one up, and come looking for me. I'll have what you want." The girl in the succubus costume flirted outrageously with the barbarian. "You here to gamble, or just watch? I don't mind someone watching, just so's you know." With a wink and a nod, the server tuned and sashayed towards a group of well-dressed peopl near one of the game tables, her "wings" bobbing back and forth.


Male Goblin Wizard 5 (Abjurer); Init +2; Darkvision 60 ft,; Perception +3; AC 13 (touch 13, flatfooted 12; +2 Dex., +1 size); hp 35; Fort +3; Ref +3; Will +5

The comment about his becoming this place's "mascot" makes Anklebiter cock his head in confusion for a moment. His lips move as he tries to translate the word -- and then, when understanding dawns, his wide mouth splits in a big grin and he laughs as hard as anyone else.

The little Goblin stands on his bar stool and bows to the gathered people, Minky mimicking the gesture on his shoulder.

"Be a mascot? What a chance!
But do tell me, before I dance,
what rewards I would receive
if I start playing your comic relief."

Still giggling, Anklebiter turns back to the barmaid.
"'Exotic', she says, this lady fair
with the light of the sun on her skin and her hair.
'Exotic' sounds nice, I will admit.
Tell me, beauteous one, what drinks could I get for it?"


Male(HP:58/58; AC:17/10/17;F+8,R+3,W+2;Init +0;Per +8) Human (Ulfen) Barbarian 5
DM Bigrin wrote:
"Hail yourself. Here's a tall drink for a tall drink. You finish that one up, and come looking for me. I'll have what you want." The girl in the succubus costume flirted outrageously with the barbarian. "You here to gamble, or just watch? I don't mind someone watching, just so's you know." With a wink and a nod, the server tuned and sashayed towards a group of well-dressed peopl near one of the game tables, her "wings" bobbing back and forth.

The barbarian takes the mug and a swig from it with gusto, "You have the thanks of Lefrik Olegson. I am here to watch," He says in answer, "We men of the north gamble some, but most of our sport is more... physical." His grin doesn't fade as she goes off.

However, he does shoot the rhyming goblin a curious glance. It speaks the common speak, and it rhymes AND dances?


Half-Elf (Chelaxian) Female HP 37/37, AC 17/12/16, F +7, R +4, W +9, Init +6, Per +12 Inquisitor 5

Calla wanders around the hall, keeping her eye out for any trouble, especially cheating. One of the tall, dark-haired half-elven beauty's hands caresses the handle of the whip coiled on her hip as she roams around the tables.

A golden goblin emblem pinned to her breast next to the holy symbol of the Savored Sting, she stands out as much for the lack of a smile on her face as for the morningstar and studded leather she's wearing, unlike many of the patrons here to gamble. I'm assuming on that one; my apologies if most everyone's in full gear. Whatever her job is here, it's clearly not the same as the devilishly clad hostesses.

Fools, she thinks, they're lucky they're not in Cheliax. The diabolists would flay them alive for this competition, to to mention for confusing succubi for devils.

Noticing the real-life goblin, she casually begins to move in his direction, trying not to come into contact with any of the people at the table if she can help it.


F Dwarf Cleric 1

As Belana moves about the den, she can't help but notice the singing goblin Either the owner here has gone mad, else a goblin wandered in here on its own. I suppose that's freedom, just hope Cayden knows how tricky these goblin types are. Speaking of freedom, what i all that is holy, is in that cage?

Stopping one of the servers, inquiring about chips for gambling What's a servant of the lucky drunk need to pay to get in on one of these games?


The bartender looks at the quirky goblin for a moment, trying to decide if he is putting her on or not. "You kidding me, gob? I just read the list to your neighbor there." She sighed, then quickly plastered the smile back on her face and recited the 30-someodd varieties of liquor on the premises and the 20 varieties of wine.

----------------------------------------------------------------------

A hard-faced half-orc pushes past Lefrik as he gawks at the server and her...well, call it an outfit for lack of a better name. The gray-skinned half orc grunted what could have been either a threat or an apology at Lefrik, and headed straight for a Dragon Poker table. All around hte barbarian, people were moving in an inexorable pattern, heading towards the gaming tables of their preference, buying chips from the succubi, and grabbing drinks.

----------------------------------------------------------------------

Calla noticed that while many of the people milling in the main hall were dressed in all manner of finery, most were armed in some form or fashion. Whether just a rapier, or a greataxe, most of the company here was prepared either for trouble, or to cause it. Riddleport was pretty lax when it came to open carrying of weapons. The only real prohibition seemed to be "don't start trouble". Other than that, if some thug died because he tried to muscle the wrong person, so be it.

The goblin that she noticed didn't seem intent on making trouble. In fact, it appeared to be listening to the wine menu, for Heaven's sake!


Male Goblin Wizard 5 (Abjurer); Init +2; Darkvision 60 ft,; Perception +3; AC 13 (touch 13, flatfooted 12; +2 Dex., +1 size); hp 35; Fort +3; Ref +3; Will +5

"Elderberry wine, I do declare!" Anklebiter says.
"Do forgive me for not listening, oh lady fair;
I was laughing too loud, it is my flaw.
But now I listen to you more truly than I do to the law."

Anklebiter gives the barmaid a polite nod.

Are the wine and other spirits free as well, or do they cost money?


Male(HP:58/58; AC:17/10/17;F+8,R+3,W+2;Init +0;Per +8) Human (Ulfen) Barbarian 5

Lefrik's eyes narrow at the push and he is tempted to take issue with it. Then the warnings of his older brothers come to mind and he quickly checks his goods to make sure no coin has been stolen from him.


The server smiled at Belana and said "All games are run with chips, which you can get from any server." She held out three different colored disks of wood. "The red one is a Copper Heart. One copper per chip. The gray one is a Silver Tooth, at one silver per. The golden one is a Gold Eye. Wanna guess how much those are?" She smiled at the dwarf. Apparently these succubi were trained to smile very well indeed.

"As your stake gets higher, you can trade in Golden Eyes for badges, as per your contract. See?" She pointed to the document you signed when you registered. "There's only room for 8 players to get their Nessus badge, and you can only buy a maximum of 50 Gold Eyes, so you have to win to get to the finals. See?"

------------------------------------------------------------------------

"Beer and Ale are part of the entry fee. Wine and spirits cost pocket money, and the prices range from two silver a cup up to 50g for a bottle of fine dragonfire whiskey."


Half-Elf (Chelaxian) Female HP 37/37, AC 17/12/16, F +7, R +4, W +9, Init +6, Per +12 Inquisitor 5

Did I notice the half-orc that bumped Lefrik?

Perception 1d20 + 9 ⇒ (17) + 9 = 26


Male Goblin Wizard 5 (Abjurer); Init +2; Darkvision 60 ft,; Perception +3; AC 13 (touch 13, flatfooted 12; +2 Dex., +1 size); hp 35; Fort +3; Ref +3; Will +5

"Most patient lady, with much regret," Anklebiter says, while bowing his head to the barkeeper again, "my wallet decrees I must say 'tis a beer I'll get."

The Goblin hops off the bar stool and approaches the closest waitress; he smiles without baring his teeth. "If you please, a beer down here?" he asks.


[spoiler=Calla]nope. You were too buy watching the goblin, on the other side of the building.
[\spoiler]

Anklebiter got his beer from a smiling succubus, though without the flirting that seemed reserved for the other patrons. Mod course, this fake mating ritual was foreign to the goblin, anyways.


HP 37/46, AC 16/12/14, F +4, R +6, W +2, Init +2, Per +8 (+10 traps)

Bruendor adjusted the hood to his cloak as he entered the Golden Goblin, unsure of exactly what the tavern held in store. It had been ages since he'd been to a hall such as this, and he could smell the scent of stale beer mingling with Riddleport's usual odors. His mouth watered - perhaps coming here was a bad idea.

But, really, what was the alternative? Either he could sit in his room and wait for something to happen, or he could go out and try to find good, honest work. Unlikely, in this town, but he had to start somewhere. He approached one of the scantily-clad barmaids and held out a single gold coin - one, he noted, had been clipped a few times. "It's not too late to sign up, I trust?"

Maybe Fortune would smile upon him here. Maybe he'd make back that gold piece. And maybe, just maybe, if he kept telling himself these things, he might actually believe them.


"Not at all. Anyone can sign up until the finalists earn their seats at the championship table. After that, no more chips will be sold. You can still wander about and such, though. Are you trying your luck tonight? Or just going to watch for now?" The succubus speaking to Bruendor had dark brown hair and startlingly blue eyes. As she presented the registration form - the contract - to him, she looked at his shaven face curiously. She was far too well-trained as a hostess to remark upon it though.

"If you're gambling, you can buy your chips inside from anyone with wings. Good luck!"


Male(HP:58/58; AC:17/10/17;F+8,R+3,W+2;Init +0;Per +8) Human (Ulfen) Barbarian 5

Seeing his coins appear not to have been picked, Lefrik resecures it and shoots one last scowl at the half orc's back. I must learn that this is not the northland. Brother warned me you can't just kill people here when they give insult... backwards but what do you expect from savages? Besides, he MIGHT have apologized Who could be sure?
His mood shifts back quickly enough back to a smile as he finds a place near one of the tables to watch.


Half-Elf (Chelaxian) Female HP 37/37, AC 17/12/16, F +7, R +4, W +9, Init +6, Per +12 Inquisitor 5

Seeing the goblin appears to be no more than a dancing fool -- reminds me of that story about the rhyming demon ... what was his name? Etrigan! -- Calla returns to her perusal of the tables, keeping an eye out for anyone hoping to cheat the establishment.


As the windows darkened with twilight, several Golden Goblin employees enter the main room, carrying torches shaped like burning heads mounted on pitchforks. A hush falls over the gathered crowd as a short man climbs to the central podium, accompanied by two gorgeous "succubi". Four strong men carry over an enormous golden chest, wrapped in chains, and place it on the dais next to the man. He ewars a formal black suit, and his thinning hair is slicked back from a smiling face in which the nose has been broken at least once. His left arm ends in a stump, capped by a bronze plate that has an oddly shaped key sticking out form it.

“Welcome, one and all, to the Gold Goblin Gambling Hall and your chance to cheat the Devil and win back not only your soul but all of his gold as well.” He says this last as he pats the large chest before which he stands. “I hope you found your reception by the Devil’s lovely temptresses suitably entertaining.”

This is met by a general murmur of laughter and a few catcalls.

“I am Saul Vancaskerin, proprieter of this fine establishment, and your host for the evening. Let’s take this moment to thank Old Scratch himself for attending this event. Not only did he loan us these lovely, dark angels, but he also emptied the deepest vaults of Hell itself to provide the gold for this tournament.”

With this, Saul directs the crowd’s attention up to the imp in the birdcage. At the sudden attention, Old Scratch flies into a flurry of rage, banging the cage bars, spitting, howling, and screaming vile epithets in Infernal at all assembled. His theatrics are received with guffaws and even a smattering of applause. As the crowd dies down, Vancaskerkin continues.

“Of course, he plans on replacing what he loses in gold with the souls of those of you who don’t win. The tournament rules are quite simple—as you play, you’ll earn more chips. And with those chips, you’ll be able to bribe your way out of the current Hell you’re trapped in, working your way down deeper until you get to Old Scratch’s treasury. Currently, all of you are Old Scratch’s prisoners in the first of the Hells, Avernus. If you want to work your way down to the ninth circle, you need to win games. Each time you win, you’ll be awarded a golden eye. If you come in second, you’ll get a silver tooth. And third place wins a copper heart. These bits of flesh and bone are what the devils use in Hell for currency, and they’re what you’ll need to pay in order to bribe your way into the next layer of hell. The first player to win a game after reaching Nessus not only keeps his winnings for that game, but also earns a seat at the championship table. Once all eight seats are filled, all other games are suspended and the championship begins. The last one with chips on the table earns back his soul and the ten thousand silver coins that the Devil put up for this tournament. You can, of course, decide to cash out your winnings at any time you want, but if you do, or if you run out of money entirely… well, that means Old Scratch gets you.”

Vancaskerkin grins evilly and the caged imp cuts loose with another profane tirade. “And that earns you the Devil’s Mark and an escort out of the game hall until the tournament is over. What, you ask, exactly is this Devil’s Mark? Well, it’s something too utterly horrible to even contemplate. The forfeiture of your very soul, it is. But I suppose I can show you what it is— gods know I more than deserve the Devil’s Mark. In fact, better make it two, girls!” With that, the two succubi accompanying him lean over and each firmly plants a kiss on Saul’s cheek with her ruby-red lips. When they pull away, their lip rouge has left clearly visible prints in the same shocking red on his cheeks. Saul beams as he cries out, “The Devil’s Mark, everyone!” which is greeted by a flurry of shouts, catcalls, and hoots. “Now, let’s cheat the Devil and take his gold!” which prompts one more rabid flurry from the imprisoned fiend above, and with that, the tournament begins.

There are tables for Dragon Poker, Spinner, Bounder, and Skiffs. The championship table looks to have the materials for all four games at it, making it likely that all four will be played eventually. Scattered through the main hall and in the more private rooms are tables with individual games on them. One side room has a table dedicated specifically to a variant of Spinner called Ghoulette, which uses a talking head to determine the winning space.

For those that are gambling, let me know how many chips you want to buy as your entry stake. No more than 20g in chips.


Male(HP:58/58; AC:17/10/17;F+8,R+3,W+2;Init +0;Per +8) Human (Ulfen) Barbarian 5

Lefrik is less disturbed by the talk of devils, and the sudden realization that the imp appears to be real. A minor devil to be sure, but a devil nonetheless... or is it demon? He is no Godar or skald to know the difference in lore.

"The gambling looks fun," He admits aloud to himself and no one else in particular, "but I wonder at the wisdom of keeping such a creature, even if caged."


Male Goblin Wizard 5 (Abjurer); Init +2; Darkvision 60 ft,; Perception +3; AC 13 (touch 13, flatfooted 12; +2 Dex., +1 size); hp 35; Fort +3; Ref +3; Will +5

"Depends," a rough-edged, squeaky voice says somewhere near Lefrik's knee. "Depends on what you plan to do with it, and how you stop it from having its revenge on you if it gets free."

If Lefrik looks down, he can see the Goblin, staring at the Imp just as he was. On the Goblin's shoulder is a monkey, which is staring at the tall Northman, rather than the caged fiend. If the monkey catches Lefrik looking at it, it blows a raspberry.

"Nobody said anything about giving up your soul to play here," Anklebiter continues, his voice oddly thoughtful despite its high pitch and harsh consonants. "I haven't played, only listened and watched. Is my soul safe, then? I have better things planned for my eternity than suffering at the end of a devil's pitchfork."

The Goblin lowers its gaze from the fiend to Lefrik's face and asks a question, its voice completely serious: "Would you agree that Hell is not a desirable destination for your soul, giant human? I hope the one-armed one was just talking blather."


F Dwarf Cleric 1

Belana trades in 10g for chips with one of the servers and finds an open seat at a Bounder table. When it's her bet, she will place 2g on the table, while draining her mug, before raising it in the air "To the lucky drunk, may Cayden smile upon us all", her toast loud enough to attract some attention from neighboring tables.

10g worht of chips, betting 2g.
1st roll: 1d20 ⇒ 13
2nd roll: 1d20 ⇒ 1


Male(HP:58/58; AC:17/10/17;F+8,R+3,W+2;Init +0;Per +8) Human (Ulfen) Barbarian 5
Anklebiter the Insane wrote:

"Depends," a rough-edged, squeaky voice says somewhere near Lefrik's knee. "Depends on what you plan to do with it, and how you stop it from having its revenge on you if it gets free."

If Lefrik looks down, he can see the Goblin, staring at the Imp just as he was. On the Goblin's shoulder is a monkey, which is staring at the tall Northman, rather than the caged fiend. If the monkey catches Lefrik looking at it, it blows a raspberry.

"Nobody said anything about giving up your soul to play here," Anklebiter continues, his voice oddly thoughtful despite its high pitch and harsh consonants. "I haven't played, only listened and watched. Is my soul safe, then? I have better things planned for my eternity than suffering at the end of a devil's pitchfork."

The Goblin lowers its gaze from the fiend to Lefrik's face and asks a question, its voice completely serious: "Would you agree that Hell is not a desirable destination for your soul, giant human? I hope the one-armed one was just talking blather."

Lefrik is startled, for a moment he almost reaches for his axe, it IS a goblin, after all, but he curbs his upbringing's lessons about goblins and instead converses with it.

"I did not think goblins truly had souls, but then I am no godar so I know little of souls, perhaps you do," Lefrik admits as if thinking it over. "I cannot speak for others, but I hear hell is a place for dishonored souls who confuse pride for honor, cruelty over others for power, and selfishness for wisdom. Even the devils there are chained and never know true joy. So one of my brothers said."

Another pause, "Why are you here? Are you a thrall, repaying some debt? I did not think a human city safe for your kind. Are goblins common in Riddleport?"


Belana picked a Bounder table full of people - mostly human, though a few halflings and half-elves were present also - and placed her bet. The Bounder croupier made the rounds of bets, and called for first throw. Once all the players had made their roll, he threw the dealer's set - a flashy gold-plated set of dice with a goblin's head in place of the 1 pip.

3d6 ⇒ (2, 5, 4) = 11

The croupier's dice rolled 11, and he called for the 2nd set. Players threw their dice and a large number at the table groaned in frustration. Others smiled and raked in their winnings, Belana among them.

Belana wins 4g.

The croupier's patter, the betting, and finally the rolls takes about 5 minutes of play time.

----------------------------------------------------------------------

Calla looked out at the tables and players, vigilant for signs of cheating or violence. Gamblers always looked like they were having the time of their lives...at least until they started losing. Heated voices rang out from one spinner game. A surly looking thug accusing a well-dressed man of bumping the table. The sneer on the well-dressed man's face spoke volumes, though he said not a word.

Calla:
As a guard/bouncer it is your job to make sure that minor altercations don't turn into major ones. Saul's standing orders are for you to try and defuse the situation where possible. Though if things escalate, you are to use any and all necessary non-lethal force to escort the unrulies from the Goblin. Any that are kicked out get smeared with a blot of red lipstick (the Devil's Mark). Kisses are reserved for those that go bust or cash out - and are left to the succubi. You have a stick in your pocket to smear on the faces of those that have to be forcibly removed.


F Dwarf Cleric 1

let it ride, 4g bet first roll: 1d20 ⇒ 11
second roll: 1d20 ⇒ 5

Having won her first bet, Belana takes it as a good sign. My lucky night, think i'll let the bet ride."


Half-Elf (Chelaxian) Female HP 37/37, AC 17/12/16, F +7, R +4, W +9, Init +6, Per +12 Inquisitor 5

Scowling, Calla makes her way toward the disruption. Pinning the thug with her gaze, she asks in a menacing tone, "Is there a problem here?"

Intimidate: 1d20 + 5 ⇒ (18) + 5 = 23

Oooh, dicebot actually seems to favor this character for a change.


Male Goblin Wizard 5 (Abjurer); Init +2; Darkvision 60 ft,; Perception +3; AC 13 (touch 13, flatfooted 12; +2 Dex., +1 size); hp 35; Fort +3; Ref +3; Will +5

Anklebiter giggles. "Me, a thrall? Go pin your own ears to the wall! No, I am here because... I am here. So far, I'm safe, and so's my soul, which I'm fair sure I own. Do you have one, gigantic human?"


Male(HP:58/58; AC:17/10/17;F+8,R+3,W+2;Init +0;Per +8) Human (Ulfen) Barbarian 5

"Of course!" Clearly thinking it was a silly question, and not realizing any irony in the fact he questioned the goblins own soul just a moment ago. "Perhaps my soul will go to join the heroes among my ancestors when I finally pass, if my deeds be great enough."


"Bounder, bounder, up and down-er." The croupier's patter goes on as the bets come in. Players make their first rolls, some groaning as their dice roll in the mid-range. Some whooping as 1's and 20's show. One half-elf had a Goblin succubi blowing on his dice for luck, a Silver Tooth wedged in the cleavage showing from the bodice of her outfit. The croupier called an end to new bets and rolled his own dice.

3d6 ⇒ (2, 2, 4) = 8

A total of 8 had most of the crowd grinning as they threw their second set of dice. The half-elf cursed as his 3 was followed by a 6, but Belana grinned, winning once more.

Belana wins 8g

----------------------------------------------------------------------

The thug looks over at Calla, and seeing the badge on her chest and the look in her eyes he quails a bit. "Uh, no. Nothing that can't be talked out. This guy bumped the table, is all. Maybe it was an accident. Just threw me off my game, you know?"


F Dwarf Cleric 1

one more time, let it ride first roll: 1d20 ⇒ 2
second roll: 1d20 ⇒ 19

As the croupier's roll comes up 8, Belana calls over to the closest server for a refill of her mug More ale, to honor this den and my god"

Turning back to the table she decides to let them bet stand. When the betting is done Belana makes her rolls.


Half-Elf (Chelaxian) Female HP 37/37, AC 17/12/16, F +7, R +4, W +9, Init +6, Per +12 Inquisitor 5

She gives the man a wry smile. "Ah'm glad it can be worked out. Mah apologies, on behalf of the Gold Goblin, if your game was hurt."

Once she's sure the situation is dealt with, she'll begin moving around the hall again, keeping an eye out for anyone who might be cheating.


Male Goblin Wizard 5 (Abjurer); Init +2; Darkvision 60 ft,; Perception +3; AC 13 (touch 13, flatfooted 12; +2 Dex., +1 size); hp 35; Fort +3; Ref +3; Will +5

"I've no idea where I'll go after death or what I'll do," Anklebiter giggles, "but what'll your ancestors be doing with you?"


"And the Lady dwarf wins again," said the croupier. "Would you like to cash in some of your winnings for a badge? You can't get to the final table without a badge of Nessus." Belana looked around to find herself at the center of a small knot of onlookers. Her winnings are drawing a lot of attention, not least because most people are betting silver, while Belana has a goodly pile of Golden Eyes in front of her.

Belana wins 16g. you're on a hot streak

-----------------------------------------------------------------------
The thug sat back down and the half-elf next to him let loose another of those voluble sneers. His face returned to a more neutral tone when Calla speared him with her glance. As she scanned the room for more signs of trouble, she saw nothing else needing her immediate attention. Of course, the night was young yet...


Male(HP:58/58; AC:17/10/17;F+8,R+3,W+2;Init +0;Per +8) Human (Ulfen) Barbarian 5
Quote:
As the croupier's roll comes up 8, Belana calls over to the closest server for a refill of her mug More ale, to honor this den and my god"

"I like her spirit," Lefrik admits as he watches the games.

Anklebiter the Insane wrote:
"I've no idea where I'll go after death or what I'll do," Anklebiter giggles, "but what'll your ancestors be doing with you?"

The Ulfen answers eagerly, "They will welcome me into their ranks once more. I shall see beloved family I knew when I was young and they were old before battle or old age took them from us. Others will be those I never met but their legends inspired me. I shall met them all. They shall say "Well, Done, Lefrik." and we shall drink nector from mugs eternal, and perhaps raise celestial axes to battle in the next realm against any evil that would asail our here after. But mostly it would be eternal glory and joy."

Then he considers and looks at Anklebiter, "What is your name again, goblin?"


Male Goblin Wizard 5 (Abjurer); Init +2; Darkvision 60 ft,; Perception +3; AC 13 (touch 13, flatfooted 12; +2 Dex., +1 size); hp 35; Fort +3; Ref +3; Will +5

"Anklebiter they call me now, if you please," the Goblin says, and bobs his head in a birdlike fashion. "And if it doesn't, then at you I'll sneeze." He giggles again -- then turns a little more serious: "I don't hope to see all my ancestors over booze when I die. Goblins get rowdy when they drink, and who knows what dead drunken Goblins might do? Not I, and hopefully, not you."

Anklebiter cocks his head and looks at the Northman. "So what's your name, may it carry no shame? And in this city and this hall, what might be your game?"

Noticing Lefrik's attention for Belana, Anklebiter glances at her and grimaces. "Dwarves, Dwarves, full of hair," he sighs, huddling a little as if he suddenly feels cold. "Look at one the wrong way, and you'll soon breathe no air."


Male(HP:58/58; AC:17/10/17;F+8,R+3,W+2;Init +0;Per +8) Human (Ulfen) Barbarian 5

"I am Lefrik Olegson, and it bears no shame, I assure you. Though I hope to bring much glory as well," He considers Anklebiter's concerns about drunken goblin ancestors,"Pehaps you should see if some goodly human god will take your soul into his or her realm in the after. I understand some of them aren't too choosy. That way you can avoid your ancestors."

"Dwarves? They are an honorable and brave people. Magnificent crafters, and great warriors. Yes, they can be a bit greedy, some of the worst of them, but overall, there are few the Northmen would prefer by their side in battle against orcs, giants, or gobl..." Remembering who he is talking to, or rather what, he coughs a bit, "Well, many dangerous beings."


Male Goblin Wizard 5 (Abjurer); Init +2; Darkvision 60 ft,; Perception +3; AC 13 (touch 13, flatfooted 12; +2 Dex., +1 size); hp 35; Fort +3; Ref +3; Will +5

Anklebiter gives Lefrik a beady-(not to mention red-)eyed Look and grins a bit. "Aye," he says. "Goblins. No wonder I'd rather not fall afoul of a hammermaid, is it, Lefrik Olegson? If you think humans hate us, you know nothing. Dwarves can Hate. Scarier than us, in some ways, they are.

In any case, I'll see where my soul ends. I might not see an ancestor for eternities. You know us Goblins; we go just about anywhere. I'm not even sure the ancestors would have stayed put in any place set aside for dead Goblins, if there is one just for us. I might end up there just to find a lot of footprints and no ancestral souls."


Male(HP:58/58; AC:17/10/17;F+8,R+3,W+2;Init +0;Per +8) Human (Ulfen) Barbarian 5

"Now you go to theology that makes my head ache to think about, Anklebitter," Lefrik admits, "Best to ask a godar or cleric as they call them here, I suppose."

Thinking over the nature of his unusual aquaintance, he feels he must ask, "You do not sound eager to meet others of your kind either. Is there some reason you no longer dwell among other goblins?"


Male Goblin Wizard 5 (Abjurer); Init +2; Darkvision 60 ft,; Perception +3; AC 13 (touch 13, flatfooted 12; +2 Dex., +1 size); hp 35; Fort +3; Ref +3; Will +5

Anklebiter just grins, and taps his cheek. He says not a word to explain, but Lefrik may note the branding-marks on the Goblin's face.


Male(HP:58/58; AC:17/10/17;F+8,R+3,W+2;Init +0;Per +8) Human (Ulfen) Barbarian 5

It takes Lefrik a moment to get the hint, but he looks down, "Some sort of marking for exile? Forgive me, but you know the reputation of your people among other races. Perhaps what they intend as a symbol of outcast you should wear as a badge of honor?" Then he adds, "Among some men of the north, marks upon the flesh, be it battle scar or something more artistic, are often admired."


Male Goblin Wizard 5 (Abjurer); Init +2; Darkvision 60 ft,; Perception +3; AC 13 (touch 13, flatfooted 12; +2 Dex., +1 size); hp 35; Fort +3; Ref +3; Will +5

"Hmm. I fought like a hero when they gave me these marks, I did," Anklebiter says, and he bestows a toothy grin on Lefrik. "I screamed and twisted, I pissed myself and bit and scratched. Didn't help none, as you can see. Don't think these will earn much admiration anywhere."


Male(HP:58/58; AC:17/10/17;F+8,R+3,W+2;Init +0;Per +8) Human (Ulfen) Barbarian 5

Lefrik gives sage advice, "As a rule, pissing yourself will not get you into the sagas of legend. I advise against it from now on."


F Dwarf Cleric 1

yes Belana will trade her her for a badge.

Handing the required cost for her badge, Belana begins to notice the crowd, "Nessus, here comes Clan IronHand, prepare for the arrival of one of Cayden Cailien's chosen!"


Male Goblin Wizard 5 (Abjurer); Init +2; Darkvision 60 ft,; Perception +3; AC 13 (touch 13, flatfooted 12; +2 Dex., +1 size); hp 35; Fort +3; Ref +3; Will +5
Lefrik Olegson wrote:
Lefrik gives sage advice, "As a rule, pissing yourself will not get you into the sagas of legend. I advise against it from now on."

"Everyone wets on themselves sooner or later," Anklebiter says with absolute conviction. "I haven't heard a lot of human stories, but there are plenty of Goblin sagas that say he or she got moist in the pants when things got tough. Of course, then they got really angry and slit whatever scared them in the first place. That's why they're in the tales."

Anklebiter's ears quiver when he hears Belana's proud voice and he hunkers down a bit more. "Hmmrrr," the little Goblin growls. "Gambling like a hero, her?"


Male(HP:58/58; AC:17/10/17;F+8,R+3,W+2;Init +0;Per +8) Human (Ulfen) Barbarian 5

"I think goblin tales wouldn't be to my liking, any story with more piss than women or ale loses me quickly." Lefrik replies. As the female dwarf makes her announcement, he nods to the goblin, "As I said, I like her. She gambles like some in my land fight. Loud and proud." he raises a brow, "Chosen? Perhaps she is a Godar."


The dealer snags a 4 gold from Belana's pile and hands her a badge of Erobus, explaining that she can 'purchase' up to 2 badges at a time, but only with winnings from the current game. "So's you have to win to get badges." in front of Belana sits 12 Golden Eyes, and the croupier asks if she wants to keep going.

------------------------------------------------------------------------

Calla:
Make me a perception check please

Bruendor:
Did you have a particular game you wanted to play, or did you want me to abstract out your gambling?


Male Goblin Wizard 5 (Abjurer); Init +2; Darkvision 60 ft,; Perception +3; AC 13 (touch 13, flatfooted 12; +2 Dex., +1 size); hp 35; Fort +3; Ref +3; Will +5

"There are most certainly women in Goblin sagas," Anklebiter says, his tone of voice surprised. "There are always women. Snatta Five-Times-Ten is one of my tribe's great heroes, to name but one. She stewed the ears of five times ten Elves for a heroic feast for the tribe. The Elves weren't even dead yet when she harvested the ears! And there was much beer to go with the stew."

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