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RPG Superstar 2015

DM Carbide's Through a Cracked Mirror: The Dark Road (Inactive)

Game Master John Woodford

As the myriad potential Golarions collide, a small group of heroes is charged with setting things right.


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Male Nagaji Monk / Master of Many Styles 5; HP 35/35; AC 17/16/15; saves 5/7/7; perc +12

Sami looks to the others and offers a shrug. He steps forward to the hut and raps his knuckles on the door, lightly. Hello?


Male Human Ranger 1/Inquisitor 4 HP: 38/42

Cast Comprehend languages
Perception check:1d20 + 15 ⇒ (4) + 15 = 19


Male Human Warpriest 8, AC21/T10/FF21+2 if using Shield, HP74/74, F10/R4/W12, CMB+10/CMD+20, Perception +5

Xavier looks to the others, not feeling threatend but unsure. No beast would live here. He moves up and Knocks on the door.
Hello?


Weakly Godlike Entity

Rashun, you can tell the voice is singing in Common, an old air about trees. At the knock the singing stops, followed by a cry of, "I'll be right there." There is the sound of dragging footsteps from inside, punctuated by soft thumps. The door opens to reveal a very, very old Bonuwat human woman leaning on a staff. Her face is a field of deep wrinkles, her white dreadlocked hair is long and gathered into a single tail, and she's dressed in a somewhat faded multicolored robe. "Well?" she asks, in a querulous but not angry voice. "What are you doing here?" You can see some movement behind her in the dim light inside the hut; Sami is able to resolve it as a large snake.

Scarab Sages

Female Human Sorceress 6

Eretria stays a !it back, ready to fight if needed. She didn't like that they were basically directed to the island.


Barbarian 2/Oracle of Battle 3 HP: 44/47 AC:21/11/20

Darc nervously plays with the handle of his flail, he looks at Eretria. "Ready?"


Male Nagaji Monk / Master of Many Styles 5; HP 35/35; AC 17/16/15; saves 5/7/7; perc +12

Sami finds himself caught in a moment of confusion at the sight of the snake. He recovers with a cough, then bows his head in way of greeting. Hello there; I'm sorry to bother you, but we've been traveling up river, and have found that the way is quite effectively blocked. We're seeking another way around; do you know anything about the webbed mats that float in the water?


Male Human Warpriest 8, AC21/T10/FF21+2 if using Shield, HP74/74, F10/R4/W12, CMB+10/CMD+20, Perception +5

Xavier attempts to lay on the charm.
Diplomacy1d20 + 2 ⇒ (13) + 2 = 15

He dips a deep bow, Pardon our intrusion, Ma'am. We were abit turned about and found our way here, then heard your lovely song. It is as our friend said and if you know another way past the river blockage would be appreciated.


Weakly Godlike Entity

The woman smiles, seeing where Sami is looking. "Don't worry about Jory, he's well-behaved. Just out for a little boat ride, hm? And what an interesting group you are. Don't worry, I don't bite." She hobbles out of the hut, leaning heavily on her staff and shuffling along, and letting the door close with the snake on the other side. "He'll worry, but I'm too old to be concerned about death. Now, your problem. If you want to get past the nets, you have to talk to their maker and ruler. You see, there are...things from elsewhere, things that came with the fallen star. Some go on land, others under the water. The ones who were here before me wanted to stop them, and Everway here is a fine chokepoint for when they come down the river. Now, when I came here you couldn't reach the island, but I convinced the maker to open the south shore to travelers. No one comes this way, though. Until now." She cackles a bit, then coughs.


Male Nagaji Monk / Master of Many Styles 5; HP 35/35; AC 17/16/15; saves 5/7/7; perc +12

Sami scratches his scaly chin in thought. I see. This maker that you refer to...is it a reasonable creature? Where can we find it?


Weakly Godlike Entity

She smiles a bit (or her wrinkles rearrange in a manner that suggests it), as if at a private joke. "Reasonable enough, I think. They may have something for you to do, though. It's rather into trades. As for where you can find it, they're down in the forest mostly." She points with her stick before continuing in a lower voice. "Tell me...did you come through Cassomir?"

Scarab Sages

Female Human Sorceress 6

"Yes... the way by river was quicker to travel... and likely safer for that matter." Eretria edges near Xavier, attempting to make sure he is in some way between her and the woman, something was off about her and she felt better just having that extra measure of protection.


Male Human Warpriest 8, AC21/T10/FF21+2 if using Shield, HP74/74, F10/R4/W12, CMB+10/CMD+20, Perception +5

Xavier notes.Eretria's move and stands protectively in front of her.
Annnnnnd...Back on her good side!

He hides a smile, glad to be her protector.


Barbarian 2/Oracle of Battle 3 HP: 44/47 AC:21/11/20

From his position away at the back, Darc finds it difficult to hear the old lady's voice but catches enough to understand the meaning. He watches her every move, her body-language, her bent over frame. Situations like this are never that straight forward, many times he's been caught out by plausible stories in the past, like the field of evil red smelling poppies, being the site of a glorious battle and the poppies grew one for each hero that died. What he wasn't told was that the poppies brought forward the undeathly warrior and considered the battle ongoing, he barely escaped with his life, though several of his friends now grow there.

Sense Motive 1d20 - 1 ⇒ (4) - 1 = 3


Male Nagaji Monk / Master of Many Styles 5; HP 35/35; AC 17/16/15; saves 5/7/7; perc +12

Sami nods his head at Eretria's response, then watches the woman for her reaction.

sense motive
1d20 + 7 ⇒ (19) + 7 = 26


Weakly Godlike Entity

"Ah. Pardon me for asking, it's just an old woman's curiosity. My stepson (and later apprentice) lived there at one time...he's likely long since died or fled, though."

Sami, her reaction seems sincere. Darc, something about her tone still sets you on edge.

Scarab Sages

Female Human Sorceress 6

Eretria shifts uncomfortably, she wonders if the woman is talking about the old druid who helped them with the boat... she could mean a number of different people though. She chooses to remain quiet on the matter though, glancing to the rest to see what they do.


Male Human Ranger 1/Inquisitor 4 HP: 38/42

Rashun speaks up. "Is there anything else that you might think we would need to know while looking for this "maker"."

diplomacy:1d20 + 11 ⇒ (7) + 11 = 18


Weakly Godlike Entity

She again give the slight smile. "Watch where you step. Don't worry about finding them yourself; I'll go down and introduce you to it. You don't seem to be the sorts who can understand it away from the Talking Grove. I mean no offense, mind; it took me years to manage to follow them, and I had a very good teacher."


Barbarian 2/Oracle of Battle 3 HP: 44/47 AC:21/11/20

Darc makes sure his shield is in position, he whispers in Eretria's ear, "No like lady." He holds his flail tightly in his hand, eyes narrowed and staring at the old woman.


Male Human Warpriest 8, AC21/T10/FF21+2 if using Shield, HP74/74, F10/R4/W12, CMB+10/CMD+20, Perception +5

Xavier doesn't hesitate to answer the nice old lady, Sorry Ma'am. The only person we spent any time with was the druid who looks after the lighthouse. Nice fellow, he was.


Weakly Godlike Entity

She grins broadly, showing a fair number of missing teeth. "So my dear little Luntz is still running the lighthouse! And he must have kept up his lessons, if you're calling him a druid. Ah, what a sweet boy he was! And his father--" She smiles in a rather different way, one that seems somehow out of place on a nonagenarian. "--what a fine man he was...." Her voice trails away as she looks off into the distance, remembering. Then she pulls her attention back to the group. "Enough of that! Now, I'll warn you. It'll be dark by the time we get to the Talking Grove, so you might prefer to stay up here or down by your boat until tomorrow morning. The maker can be somewhat startling at the best of times, and meeting them in the dark your first time...I don't recommend it.

"And since you spoke so well of my apprentice, I suppose I shouldn't draw the jest out any longer. Though it's always so amusing seeing people meet the maker for the first time unaware of what they are, I'll forgo that pleasure. Though you're denying an old woman one of the few enjoyments left to her, I'll have you know." She sighs theatrically. "I'm Simbala, by the way."

The Tale of Simbala:
"After the Starfall, Everway--like the rest of the Verduran Forest--was devastated. The great trees, nurtured and tended by druids of my circle for millenia, blasted and burned to ash. Oh, some of the roots survived, once the river began to flow again, but the mighty grove that once stood here is now but a memory.

"To this place came a few of the druids who study destroyed places and how to restore their life--the blight druids. It was they who carefully preserved the roots of the trees you see down by the banks, and under their care the trees began to regrow. It was a--not a happy time here, but at least a productive one. They were able to keep the akata from the island, and it looked like if they held on a few more generations they could go forth and reseed the blasted land.

"Then came other things, darker things, and they knew they couldn't hold the island against them. Worse, the most powerful were aquatic, and it was clear that their intent was to escape into the Inner Sea. Talgore, the most capable and accomplished of the blight druids, conceived a daring plan. He modified a druidic ritual--one that ignites the flame of sapience in an animal or plant--and combined it with the blight druid talent for reaching the minimal minds of the meanest creatures.

"It was brilliant. He awoke a mentality in a spider swarm. And it succeeded as well as he'd hoped--the mind outlasted individual spiders, and the swarm was able to absorb other spiders into itself, growing vast in intellect. The swarm mind learned druidic magic as well, casting in its own strange way, and it spread its influence from this island to the opposite banks, barring any aberration from passing. The vines trap them under the water, and as you may know there are aquatic spiders too.

"By the time I came here, the project was well along. I worked along with the maker and the other druids here, bringing back the great trees, but the heart of the island was left mostly as it is, a memorial to the ones who passed when the star fell.

"Now, if you'll pardon me, I should be getting to sleep soon. If you like I have enough food for all of you...and if you're suspicious I'll taste everything first." She smiles again, glancing over at Eretria and Darc.


Male Nagaji Monk / Master of Many Styles 5; HP 35/35; AC 17/16/15; saves 5/7/7; perc +12

Sami looks to Darc and Eretria; though he had seen no reason not to trust the woman, they seemed hesitant. He wished he had asked Luntz more about her, but he hadn't given it a second thought at the time.

We appreciate your hospitality, Simbala. May we have a moment to discuss our plans?. Assuming she says yes, Sami will retreat several steps fom the door to confer with his companions. Shall we take her up on this offer? I have not seen anything about her that would indicate a darker motive than to help us.


Male Human Warpriest 8, AC21/T10/FF21+2 if using Shield, HP74/74, F10/R4/W12, CMB+10/CMD+20, Perception +5

Xavier keeps his voice low, since the woman, apparently had good ears, Why not? We sleep outside and set a watch as normal. Luntz did not speak ill of her. What does the flying helmet think?


Weakly Godlike Entity

"I do not sense any active malice in her."

Dice rolls:
Sense Motive check for Besmarial: 1d20 + 4 ⇒ (6) + 4 = 10

Scarab Sages

Female Human Sorceress 6

Eretria nods slightly, "I just... I suppose if she had been someone of concern Luntz would have mentioned it before we left." She glances at the woman, maybe she was safe enough.


Barbarian 2/Oracle of Battle 3 HP: 44/47 AC:21/11/20

Darc his hand relaxes, but still plays on the handle of his flail, as child would his comfort blanket. He remains silent and sullen, but follows Eretria's lead and let's the rest of the group get to know the woman, whilst his eyes watch her moves.

Its is later, he says "I guard boat." He will stay outside with the boat, taking his watch as usual.

Perception on watch 1d20 + 6 ⇒ (18) + 6 = 24


Weakly Godlike Entity

Darc, the night is mostly uneventful, with one exception: shortly after midnight, there's a massive commotion out on the water to the west. You're able to pick out something about thirty feet across (it's hard to tell) with entirely too many tentacles and eyes thrashing in the water, tangled in vines and mats, with at least a dozen huge spiders hanging onto it. Eventually it ceases to move and sinks below the surface, and the night is again still.

The next morning, the vine network has been repaired.


Male Human Ranger 1/Inquisitor 4 HP: 38/42

Upon waking the next morning Rashun says a prayer, and sharpens his weapon until the others wake up.

If I am needed to take watch so Darc can sleep I am more than willing to do so.


Male Nagaji Monk / Master of Many Styles 5; HP 35/35; AC 17/16/15; saves 5/7/7; perc +12

Sami rises with the dawn, seeming happy that no ill befell them last night. It would be improper for one to invite them then try anything untoward, and he desperately wanted to trust this woman, perhaps just due to her link to Luntz. He walks to her hut and knocks, grinning when she opens the door. Good morning; I hope that you slept well. Not to rush you, but when will you be ready to take us to the maker?


Male Human Warpriest 8, AC21/T10/FF21+2 if using Shield, HP74/74, F10/R4/W12, CMB+10/CMD+20, Perception +5

Xavier awakes and rapidly moves into his morning routine. Bird bath, cleans teeth , touches up his beard and Armors up.
When he's ready, he tries to outdo Darc again. He moves out seemingly to 'stretch his legs, but is really looking for food.
Survival1d20 + 2 ⇒ (18) + 2 = 20


Weakly Godlike Entity

Xavier, there isn't much in the way of easily catchable edible creatures around here, but there are a lot of edible plants in the patch of greenery around Simbala's hut.


Male Human Ranger 1/Inquisitor 4 HP: 38/42

Rashun sees that Xavier has beat him to gathering food, and decided to go talk to Darc.

"Darc, I have been curious. Who or what supplies your power? To what end do you intend to use your gifts for the world? Sorry if I am being blunt, but if I don't ask I won't know."

Rashun smiles not only to put Darc at ease, but because he is eager for the answer.


Barbarian 2/Oracle of Battle 3 HP: 44/47 AC:21/11/20

"I Gorrum's chosen, he favor me. In battle I died lay in darkness. Gorrum came offered light and life, fire in belly to fight in his name." The big half-orc looks down at his leg, "Sustained in last life battle, Gorrum leave to remind me. I not priest no heal it. Gorrum smiles at my scars. I will die in battle in honor to him and for him." He looks to Rashun, a tear almost forming in his eye, which he quickly wipes away. "And you?" Darc nods at the hooded and quiet man, his mouth dry, his tongue wets his lips. Rashun having witnessed the longest dialogue from Darc since their meeting.


Weakly Godlike Entity

I had an aside about Luntz mentioning his stepmother in connection with Everway HERE, but I didn't really draw attention to it.


Male Human Ranger 1/Inquisitor 4 HP: 38/42

"Well Darc I grew up basically alone in the world. My parents did not care about me all that much, and I basically had to take care of myself, often by resorting to crime. I was caught more than once, and they punished me severely, even though I had no other choice since they refused to feed me. Now we were poor, but sometimes even when we had food they just did not give me any. Eventually I was lucky enough to meet someone willing to give me the attention I always should have had, and an honest job.
As I grew into manhood I desired to see more of the world and to help others as I had been helped. I rode as bodyguard with missionaries trying to convert people to the light of Sarenrae. I had experienced redemption, and I wanted others to know that a person's past wrongs can be forgiven if they are willing to make a change.
Eventually she blessed me with some of her power so that I might be better able to protect those that need protecting, and sway those who truly want to better themselves."


Weakly Godlike Entity

Early in the morning a major thunderstorm moves in from the south. A mile or so down the river from Everway, though, the storm front disintegrates. It's still raining and windy, but no lightning or hail falls on the island and surrounding areas. Simbala emerges from her hut wearing a poncho and wide-brimmed hat, and wishes you all a pleasant good morning.

Dice rolls:
Miscellaneous roll E: 1d100 ⇒ 84
Miscellaneous roll W: 1d100 ⇒ 5
Miscellaneous roll A: 1d100 ⇒ 51


Male Nagaji Monk / Master of Many Styles 5; HP 35/35; AC 17/16/15; saves 5/7/7; perc +12

Sami looks up to the skies and sighs. I hope that's moved on for the day; our mission is hard enough without the hands of fate feeding us such weather.. He smiles at Simbala and returns the well-wishes. Good morning to you; is hope that you had a good rest. Are you ready to take us to the maker?

Sami makes an effort not to be too direct, but it's obvious that he wants to get moving so that the group can continue on their journey.


Weakly Godlike Entity

The old woman smiles. "Oh, yes. I'm going to bring Jory with, if you don't mind. It's been a few weeks since he ate." She goes hobbling down towards the forest, leaning heavily on her staff to support herself. Movement rate 15'.

On the walk down, she occasionally sings to herself in a mix of Common and Polyglot, talks to her snake, and doesn't pay a lot of attention to you unless you talk to her. Rashun, despite her gait she leaves no trail, but that's not unexpected.

The forest looms before you. There is no trace of spiderweb on the trees here. Birds flit through the branches, and other small creatures can be heard moving through the undergrowth. She leads you down a narrow trail to a grove about thirty feet across; on the north side is a pair of stone pillars on a raised stone platform. Hanging between the pillars is what looks for all the world like an array of drums of different sizes, all held vertically, ranging in size from one to six feet across. Simbala shuffles to the platform and bangs her staff on the largest drum a few times, *boom* *boom* *boom*. "Hoy, maker! Ch-ch-ch-ch-cht! Come out and talk!"

The echoes of the drumbeats and her call die away in the sudden quiet. Silent seconds tick by while nothing happens, each one an eternity. The silence is broken by a sibilant rush, as a wave of spiders emerges from the forest and converges on the platform. A number of them crawl over Simbala's feet, but she doesn't twitch. "It tickles a bit, but I don't much care to step on any of them."

They cover the drums and frames, the pillars and the platform. If you pay close attention you can see that at the edges of the mass there are spiders coming and going, and there is clearly some rearrangement taking place in the greater mass--none seem to be keeping still. As you watch, uncounted thousands of tiny legs begin to beat against the drumheads, a susurrus that resolves into actual words.

"Yyyyyyyyoooooooouuuuuuuu caaaaaaaalllllllled?"


Male Human Ranger 1/Inquisitor 4 HP: 38/42

Rashun has a perplexed look on his face, not knowing what to make of this. He then turns to the old woman
"How is this happening?"


Weakly Godlike Entity

"I don't know, myself. It just does. At least, what it says here in the Talking Grove is the same thing it says anywhere else." She turns back to the drums and the swarm.

Is anyone going to say anything else?

Scarab Sages

Female Human Sorceress 6

Eretria pales and stares a moment before finally stepping forward and offering it a polite bow. "Maker... we wish to move past the obstacle you left in the river...our boat is unable to and we were told you might assist us with this... it is important we continue our trip up the river as soon as possible."


Weakly Godlike Entity

I'm going to knock off the weird voice effects for now. Take them as a given, although as the conversation proceeds it sounds clearer.

"The lands to the north are dangerous. Why is it important that you continue?"


Male Human Ranger 1/Inquisitor 4 HP: 38/42

"Our very existence is in danger. We must travel that way in order to have a chance to stop it."

diplomacy:1d20 + 11 ⇒ (15) + 11 = 26


Male Human Warpriest 8, AC21/T10/FF21+2 if using Shield, HP74/74, F10/R4/W12, CMB+10/CMD+20, Perception +5

Xavier remains quiet, the cocky fighter is, for once, stunned to silence.


Male Nagaji Monk / Master of Many Styles 5; HP 35/35; AC 17/16/15; saves 5/7/7; perc +12

Sami spends much of the walk attempting to help Simbala to walk comfortably, as he tries to make small "talk" with Jory the snake, though...he may not speak its language.

He remains quiet, confident that Rashun and Eretria had indicated their needs.

Handle reptiles
1d20 + 6 ⇒ (16) + 6 = 22


Weakly Godlike Entity

Sami, the snake is quite intelligent, but takes well to your handling.

Rashun, it's difficult to get a handle on what would be diplomatic to a highly intelligent army of arachnids, but you do the best you can. The spider swarm continues its internal churn and drum-mediated speech. "Explain, please. What is this danger, and does it threaten us?" Simbala is likewise paying close attention to Rashun and the swarm, pausing occasionally to check on how Sami is doing with her snake.


Male Human Ranger 1/Inquisitor 4 HP: 38/42

Rashun looks at the group.
"Do any of you have any spells that would allow me to speak with animals?"

Scarab Sages

Female Human Sorceress 6

"Let me explain Rashun? I paid a fair amount of attention to what was explained back in our world after all."


Male Human Ranger 1/Inquisitor 4 HP: 38/42

"Go for it." says Rashun not knowing what else he can do.

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