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DM CD's Unrest in Atlus

Game Master Vethcyr


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Leto issues a command to the mantis, which takes absolutely no notice of him or his spell.

Gareth charges at the mantis, swinging his greatsword. His blow skitters harmlessly off the creature's armor.

Pygrado:
This charge does take Gareth through and out of a threatened square (M14). You may attempt an AoO against him (with sneak attack), but it will break your invisibility. Your mantis currently has the grappled condition, so it may not attempt an AoO against Gareth.

Not a recommendation, just apprising you of your options.


Jamros:
All right.

Martin:
You do detect the presence of evil, this time.

Milea twists quickly, freeing herself from the mantis' claws, before launching herself vertically into the air so rapidly that the mantis has no time to respond (successful fly check to avoid AoOs - using JZ's rule about fly skill = acrobatics in the air). She is now 60 feet above the ground in M16. The illusory Mileas continue to hover, inactive.

Pygrado:
No AoO for you vs Milea.

Martin:
You still detect evil.

Map

DM Rolls:
Escape Artist: 1d20 + 16 - 2 ⇒ (16) + 16 - 2 = 30 -2 from dex penalty while grappled
Fly (acrobatics stand-in): 1d20 + 12 - 10 ⇒ (18) + 12 - 10 = 20 -10 for full speed
Fly check (vertical flight): 1d20 + 12 ⇒ (12) + 12 = 24


HP: -11/31, 1st: 5/6, 2nd: 4/5, 3rd: 2/3, Mage Armor Active

Leto casts Scorching Ray at the mantis.

Ranged Touch Attack (with bonuses from Point Blank and Bless): 1d20 + 4 + 1 + 1 ⇒ (5) + 4 + 1 + 1 = 11 Dang it! Well we'll see. I don't know much about mantis'
Dmg:4d6 + 1 ⇒ (2, 4, 4, 6) + 1 = 17


HP: 36/36 Spells: lvl1 6/7, lvl2 5/5

Jamros delays.

DM:
And by "delays", I mean "continues having the same readied action."


HP 42/43

DM:
Not taking AoO vs Martin, obviously. How can she acrobatics away from me when she doesn't know where I am?


Pygrado:
She's using acrobatics (well, fly) to get away from the giant mantis that was grappling her. That her result was good enough to get past your CMD too was a bit of luck on her part.


HP: 33/45, Smite: 2/2, LoH: 3/6

Does the mantis do anything? Or am I up?


HP 42/43

The mantis was hit by the scorching ray, and badly burned. It withdraws to MN23-24.

DM or Perception DC 34:
Pygrado double moves to his mantis and mounts it. 2 rds invisibility left.

Stealth 1d20 + 13 + 20 ⇒ (1) + 13 + 20 = 34


M Human Paladin 2, Ranger 6

After Martin detects evil, he will act. I'm confused as to what the initiative is right now though. Let me know when i can do something


Martin:
Mid-turn update: You cease to detect an evil presence/intent.

Current Initiative:
Milea
Pygrado
Leto
Gareth <-
Jamros (actions declared)
Martin


HP: 33/45, Smite: 2/2, LoH: 3/6

Gareth steps directly under Milea and detects evil up at her.


Gareth:
She does not detect as evil.

Martin:
Sorry about the confusion, but I forgot that paladins get a special version of detect evil. Milea does not detect as evil herself, but the area effect detect evil would still ping sometimes.


M Human Paladin 2, Ranger 6

Martin pulls out a bow and readys and action to shoot Milea if she attacks anyone in the party (mantis excluded)


Leto zaps the mantis with a scorching ray.

Pygrado does... something, and the mantis withdraws east.

Gareth scans Milea with Detect Evil.

Jamros continues to wait.

Martin draws his bow, ready to shoot.

"Face it, murderer," Milea shouts down. "I'm faster and more nimble than your pet, and I'll warrant that I can stay in the air longer than it can! You can't win this contest! Throw down your weapons and let's talk. Vincenzo told me you were smarter than this! Don't throw your life away to protect a band of killers!"

She flies even higher into the air, ending in M12, 120 feet above the ground. The illusory versions of her vanish.

Map

DM Rolls:
Fly 1: 1d20 + 12 ⇒ (9) + 12 = 21
Fly 2: 1d20 + 12 ⇒ (17) + 12 = 29


HP 42/43

From the East comes Pygrado's voice.

Vincenzo? Did Vincenzo ask you to kill all those people?

Perception DC 15:
Pygrado is probably mounted on the mantis.

DM:
Ready an action to get off the mantis and head into the bushes on the north side of the road if anyone approaches the mantis, points a ranged weapon in my direction, or starts casting a spell while looking in my direction.


HP: -11/31, 1st: 5/6, 2nd: 4/5, 3rd: 2/3, Mage Armor Active

Perception: 1d20 + 3 ⇒ (13) + 3 = 16
Leto moves to K19 and casts magic missile on the mantis
Dmg:3d4 + 3 ⇒ (2, 1, 1) + 3 = 7


HP: 36/36 Spells: lvl1 6/7, lvl2 5/5

Perception: 1d20 + 3 ⇒ (4) + 3 = 7

"Hey, calm down! We don' need t' be fightin' now! Take a breath, explain yerself Pyg."

DM:
Same readied action.


HP 42/43

DM or Perception DC 35:
So yeah as soon as Leto starts casting Pygrado dismounts and jogs to I24.

Stealth 1d20 + 13 + 20 ⇒ (2) + 13 + 20 = 35

The Mantis (which had delayed) takes to the air, flying up and counterclockwise to ~H27.

Sense Motive DC 10:
It's retreating.


HP: 33/45, Smite: 2/2, LoH: 3/6

Perception Pyg:1d20 - 2 ⇒ (7) - 2 = 5
SM Pyg:1d20 + 4 ⇒ (2) + 4 = 6

Gareth looks very confused. He sheathes his sword and scans his surroundings. "Can we all just land and reappear? What are we accomplishing here?"


HP: -11/31, 1st: 5/6, 2nd: 4/5, 3rd: 2/3, Mage Armor Active

"I'm standing down!" Leto yells.

Leto lowers his wand and his casting arm.

I know this is not the initiative order, but I felt like somebody should say something.


M Human Paladin 2, Ranger 6

Martin lowers his bow but doesnt put it away, and stares in stoic silence.


Leto hits the mantis again. It looks pretty badly hurt, now.

Milea descends to an altitude of about 60 feet, in L15. "I don't harm people outside the defense of myself or others. Unlike you. You've committed, what, seven murders now? Seven people. Dead. Just because they angered somebody or were inconvenient," she shouts, disgust dripping from her words. "Did you ever think of the families you wrecked, of the lives you stole? Or did you just want to collect your next reward?"

Map

Her rant is in response to Pygrado's accusation. She's ignoring the rest of you right this second.

Sense Motive DC 23:
Bluff: 1d20 + 16 ⇒ (7) + 16 = 23

While Milea's disdain of Pygrado is sincere, she's no saint herself. Her comment about not harming people except in the defense of herself or others sounds more like an ideal than a reality, and she has experience with Dirty Business.


HP: 33/45, Smite: 2/2, LoH: 3/6

SM:1d20 + 4 ⇒ (17) + 4 = 21 Blergh

Gareth seems to be siding with Milea's words as he continues to scan his surroundings.


HP 42/43

SM 1d20 + 10 ⇒ (16) + 10 = 26

From the woods: You're lying, witch. You weren't on that ship for a pleasure cruise.

A pause, then from closer to the party. I will finish what they started, and you'll rot in the deepest hell for what you've done.

DM or Perception 41:
Pygrado is now in M20.

1d20 + 13 + 20 ⇒ (8) + 13 + 20 = 41


HP: -11/31, 1st: 5/6, 2nd: 4/5, 3rd: 2/3, Mage Armor Active

SM: 1d20 + 9 ⇒ (11) + 9 = 20
"I certainly hope not Pygrado. Not until we have everything finished and cleared up. You clearly cannot control your desire to kill."

With that Leto casts Silent Image. The image of a thick fog within which nothing can be seen even a matter of inches away surrounds and fills the squares, K15, L15, M15, K16, L16, M16, K17, L17, M17.

"If everyone could please move around within the fog that would be great so pygrado doesn't know where anyone is. Once everyone does this Pygrado you can still attack people in the fog, but you will not know who it is you will find in each square. Do you really want to attack your own party?"

DM:

Couldn't I hear from around where pygrado's voice is coming from? You know like a more general direction at least? Or if I can't do that could I find him with a detect magic?


Perception DC 21:
You think Pygrado is near the party, along the road to the east.

The perception check is for the party members other than Pygrado.


HP: -11/31, 1st: 5/6, 2nd: 4/5, 3rd: 2/3, Mage Armor Active

Perception Leto: 1d20 + 3 ⇒ (20) + 3 = 23
Perception Louis: 1d20 + 9 ⇒ (13) + 9 = 22


HP: 33/45, Smite: 2/2, LoH: 3/6

So, wait. If you're using Silent Image, we get a will save to disbelieve the fog, correct?

Will:1d20 + 6 ⇒ (17) + 6 = 23


HP: 36/36 Spells: lvl1 6/7, lvl2 5/5

"Fer all th' gods... Pyg, you coot! Y' can' keep this up! I won' fight you, but we're not 'elpin' y' neither!"

DM:
Ok, Jamros will cast hold person on Pyg as soon as he sees him. enough is enough.


M Human Paladin 2, Ranger 6

delay action


Jamros's summoned axe vanishes about this time.

Milea descends to about forty feet above the ground in J14. "Pleasure cruises don't involve chains. Well, most cruises. Anyway, I was abducted, remember? Your fellow assassins aboard the ship would have tortured and killed me when we reached our destination. Is that what you plan to finish?" She calls down, clearly enjoying herself. "And as for what I've done? I've rid Silverkeep of a band of murderers. That's right! You're finished! The red mantis has left Silverkeep, and I mean to ensure they never return. And you know what? It's all thanks to you!" She's smiling now, and adopts a mocking imitation of Pygrado's voice, " 'I'm Pygrado Gerbir, trainee assassin! Need someone killed?' " Returning to her normal voice, she continues, "I wouldn't have found the dead drop in the Bloated Man, or identified the couriers without you. They led us right to your hideout, and we caught your boss. So, the crown of Silverkeep thanks you for your kind assistance." She pauses, before suddenly remembering something. "Oh, and the rest of you - good work in the war room, saving the king and Vincenzo like that. You made a lot of people proud there."

Map

Sense Motive DC 10:
She's grandstanding, but she seems to be telling the truth.

Sense Motive DC 20:
Bluff: 1d20 + 16 ⇒ (4) + 16 = 20

She wants Pygrado pissed off at her. She wants him to run to his cronies and blab all about her, so that they don't see the real blow coming.


It's really just one check, but splitting the result seemed appropriate. Roll sense motive only once.

Pygrado:
Your invisibility effect ends at the beginning of your turn (technically it should have ended at the end of your last turn, but I think we both forgot about it).


HP 42/43

DM:
I thought it ended at the end of this turn. It's four rounds, not three, when I only make myself invisible. Either way, Leto's fog works in my advantage.

Sense Motive 1d20 + 10 ⇒ (11) + 10 = 21

What a beautiful catalyst for an alignment change.

Pygrado's voice, from the south now, is carries a knife edge you've never heard in it before. All trace of his usual buoyant affability is gone, replaced with ice. That is precisely what I mean to finish. Perhaps not now, not today, not this week. But I'll be coming for you, and I will find you. Best sleep lightly, or you'll wake up in hell surrounded by the anguished ghosts of the children you murdered.

DM or Perception DC 37 (only for those outside the fog or who disbelieved it):

Stealth 1d20 + 13 + 20 - 5 ⇒ (9) + 13 + 20 - 5 = 37

Pygrado doublemoves south, further into the woods.

DM:
Barring pursuit or other interruptions, Pygrado will continue to head south, taking care to stay hidden from aerial observation and to hide his tracks. He'll double back a few times, and generally confuse his trail, possibly climb a tree at some point to check for pursuit.
Stealth 1d20 + 13 ⇒ (10) + 13 = 23
Survival 1d20 + 3 ⇒ (11) + 3 = 14

Once he's confident he's avoided pursuit (1.5-3 hours), he'll turn West and forced march all the way to Carron. When he arrives (probably nearly dead from exhaustion) he'll go right away and report, leaving out his own potential culpability. He'll make sure to mention that he has a feeling she's part of a larger game afoot.

The mantis makes a furious aerial charge at Milea. Attack 1d20 + 7 ⇒ (8) + 7 = 15 Damage 1d6 + 3 ⇒ (3) + 3 = 6 Grab 1d20 + 11 ⇒ (4) + 11 = 15 It will continue attacking her for the rest of its duration.

When the fog dissipates, Pygrado is no where to be found.
Unless you guys want to track, pursue, and confront him, I believe this is the retirement of Pygrado as a character. I'll turn his character sheet over to DMCD if he wants to use him as an NPC (or even future antagonist), or I'd be open to potentially bringing him back as a PC after some time. I'll discuss replacement options in the OOC thread.


The mantis misses Milea.

I think we're on initiative for 2 more rounds (when it will vanish) or until it dies.


HP: 33/45, Smite: 2/2, LoH: 3/6

Gareth shouts at Pygrado, "You've made your choice, Pygrado. You saw what happened to the mantises we met in the mines. By the power of the starstone, if you ever come near me, my friends, or any innocents, I will do the same to you! Run, you coward!"

He draws his bow (swift action w/return crystal) and fires two shots at the mantis. (I believe I'm in my 2nd range increment for a -2 to both)

Attack 1:1d20 + 8 - 2 ⇒ (4) + 8 - 2 = 10
Damage 1:1d8 + 3 ⇒ (3) + 3 = 6
Attack 2:1d20 + 8 - 2 ⇒ (18) + 8 - 2 = 24
Damage 2:1d8 + 3 ⇒ (5) + 3 = 8


Gareth's first shot flies high and wide of the mantis, disappearing into the distance. His second strikes it right in the vulnerable underbelly. Defeated, it vanishes.

With Pygrado and his mantis gone, combat is over.

Milea lets herself drift slowly to the ground, saying "He's wrong. Also, I don't kill children." She pauses, and says, "I should apologize, about the deception with the deathclaw. I wasn't sure whether or not he was trustworthy, and wanted to see if you had been fooled into siding with him. So, um, sorry about not trusting you."


HP: 33/45, Smite: 2/2, LoH: 3/6

Gareth puts away his bow and approaches Milea. "Oh don't worry. I don't think any of us want to trust anything he said after that stunt." He extends his hand and gives her a gentle handshake with a wry smile. "Gareth Aldridge, m'lady. You're hurt... let me help you with some of that." With that, he places his hands on her injuries and heals her (LoH for 3d6 ⇒ (5, 1, 1) = 7 points).

"There we are, as lovely as before," He remarks. "I don't think I've ever heard of a deathclaw before... is that what the big reptile is called?"


"Thanks," she says, accepting the handshake and the healing. "That's correct. They're a subterranean apex predator, but this whole island is undermined with a massive network of tunnels, which the creatures infest. Caves connect the surface and the tunnels, allowing them to hunt up here." She pauses, before asking "Wait. Why are you here, exactly? In the center of the island, I mean."


HP: 33/45, Smite: 2/2, LoH: 3/6

Gareth nods. "Right. So we can expect to see those things pretty much anywhere." He laughs at Milea's question. "That, is a bit of a story. We had chartered a vessel to Carron, but in some odd twist of fate, met a dragon. I mean it, a real black dragon. It wrecked our ship in seconds. We saved who we could and swam ashore, then moved inland. And now, of all the chances, we ran into you and discovered that one of our ranks wanted you dead. It's been an odd couple of days to say the least."

He shakes his head and grins. "So, what brings you to this fine isle? If I didn't know any better I'd guess it was the weather."


HP: -11/31, 1st: 5/6, 2nd: 4/5, 3rd: 2/3, Mage Armor Active

"Where were you headed exactly? Anywhere in particular? Or just away from the boat?" Leto pauses for a second looking confused "Actually, quick question before that: Where did you get your clothing? The dress you had been wearing we found torn and left on the boat."


"I changed clothes before the guards and I went assassin hunting again that evening. I still had the dress in my pack when they grabbed me. Once I was locked up, they went through my stuff and just dumped most of it in a chest. Then the ship wrecked and I broke free, grabbed the stuff that wasn't ruined, and booked it away from the wreck." She says, matter-of-factly, "I figured their other ships would travel close to the coastline. I didn't want them to spot me after that, so I went inland, found the road, and started heading towards Carron. Then you showed up."

She pauses, in momentary disbelief, "Wait. You said a dragon wrecked your ship? Huh. Well, you should at least be able to get a few free drinks out of telling that story!"


HP: -11/31, 1st: 5/6, 2nd: 4/5, 3rd: 2/3, Mage Armor Active

"Yes...For the record, if you have to fight a dragon. Don't fight it on a boat. You will not continue to be on a boat for very long after. To put that aside for now, how do you know Vincenzo?"


"He's a good guy. I've worked with him a few times, and he asked me to help him with this mantis problem."


M Human Paladin 2, Ranger 6

sense motive:1d20 + 4 ⇒ (9) + 4 = 13

Martin seems to not really trust the women, but seeing the rest of the groups demeanor, he shrugs his shoulders.

Well, we best keep moving if your alright to walk a spell. What can you tell us of these assassins anyways?


"I'm fine. Let's go," she says, walking with you. "They're irritating sods. Good at ambushes and sneaking around and possessed of some magical ability, and while they're terrible infiltrators, they are good enough at misdirection to be difficult to track. The best way to catch them is to identify their clients and couriers, and then to follow the money. I believe they're holding a regional meeting in Carron, and I mean to cause some problems for them." She smiles grimly.


"But you already know what they're like. After all, you must have faced them at the shipwreck, right?"


HP: -11/31, 1st: 5/6, 2nd: 4/5, 3rd: 2/3, Mage Armor Active

"...Nope. There was no one alive at the shipwreck. And you can't glean much about abilities from dead bodies. Well at least I can't. Why? Were they alive when you left them?"


"They were, but you're wrong. You can learn a lot from dead bodies, for example: what manner of weapon killed them? How are they positioned? Were their own weapons drawn? Does it look like they stood and fought, or were they ambushed?" Milea rattles off these examples before answering. "And no, I never touched them. I was unprepared for combat, and hadn't yet worked free of the manacles. I just grabbed my stuff and ran. Plus, I couldn't be sure they hadn't fiddled with my pistol. Anyway, if you didn't kill them, how did the assassins die?"


M Human Paladin 2, Ranger 6

Martin glances up and raises an eyebrow, "Pistols?"


Shooing you back as a precaution, Milea draws her weapon. "This a firearm, or gun. Specifically, these short ones are called pistols, whereas the longer ones are muskets or blunderbusses. They use a small, explosive charge to propel a lead projectile, called a bullet, out the end of the barrel at high speeds. They take longer to load and lack the range of a bow or crossbow, but at close quarters they rip through armor with ease. On the flip side, they tend to explode if improperly maintained, so don't play around with them if you don't know what you're doing." She turns and aims at a nearby bush, pulling the trigger. As the weapon issues a loud Crack! and a spurt of smoke and flame, the bush snaps, the top half connected to the bottom by only a few strands of fiber. She waves a hand over the weapon, and stows it back at her belt. "That's the short version. I'm sure you can find someone in Carron to teach you more."

DM Rolls:
Attack vs bush: 1d20 + 10 ⇒ (9) + 10 = 19
Damage: 1d8 + 7 ⇒ (1) + 7 = 8


HP: 33/45, Smite: 2/2, LoH: 3/6

Gareth marvels at Milea's demonstration of the pistol. "So that's what those halflings were firing at us. Except they had the longer ones. Are these things really more powerful than bows? What makes them explode? Do they use magic?" He throws out a handful of questions, clearly curious.


"Better against armor, maybe. But you need to be close." Milea considers for a moment. "Guns are vastly more expensive than bows, both to purchase and to use, require a greater degree of finesse than strength, and have a tendency to jam or explode if the wielder is unskilled or unlucky. Maybe when gunsmiths perfect their art, guns will replace the bow as a weapon of war. For now, they remain the province of the wealthy, of the skilled, and of those not strong enough to use a bow to its full extent," she finishes wryly. "As for the mechanics, they don't require magic, although many are enchanted. A charge of explosive powder sits behind the bullet, and when the trigger is pulled, the mechanism sparks and ignites the powder, propelling the bullet out of the barrel."

You walk and talk until night falls, with Milea explaining what she can about how guns work. You make your camp by the side of the road. Despite the campfire, Milea lies down in a little ditch, concealed by bushes, insisting that she prefers not to make a target of herself.

Hascya:
As you trek east during the night (at Twohey's insistence), you spy a campfire in the distance. You are now about ten miles east of Carron's walls. It is around midnight.

Yes, it's the party.

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