"Thank you," he says with a large grin.
Tarric accepts the Wayfinder from Aeda and places it on the table in front of him. He is quiet for a while as he stares at it intently, examining it from several angles, his head cocked to the side like an inquisitive bird. Every so often he turns the device and watches the needle move and then settle on the same direction.
|Yarroth the Younger|
"I agree whole heartily with Yarroth." Tarric says as he returns the wayfinder to Aeda. "I am curious as to who was behind the attack, and what their purpose was. Besides, I am certain that there will be interesting records to peruse that the Pathfinders maintain. Speaking of which, I have to visit the wizard tomorrow morning and see what I can find from going through his scrolls."
"Excellent. Now, as much as it pains me to leave while there are drinks to down and stories to tell, my body demands sleep, and I would be a fool not to heed it. Good night to you all. Anton, don't do anything you'd regret if you remembered it."
Drummer takes his leave and heads over to the innkeeper, and has a somewhat lengthy discussion with him, then finally heads up to his room to sleep.
|Yarroth the Younger|
Anton nods at the rest of his companions, then meanders back towards the bar. He turns and says,"I'll be right...here. There's women to drink, and ale to..I mean there's ale to be dranken, and wom...I'll see you all tomorrow...morning? Make it late morning, noonish."
Anton spends several more hours at the tavern before retiring for the evening.
Since I don't have any important research or fact-finding to do (at least none that doesn't involve barmaids), is there anything else I should occupy Anton with before we set out on the barge to wherever we're going?
Tarric pays the inkeeper for a room and retires for the night.
Rising the next morning with the dawn, he quickly breaks his fast, with some porridge before getting directions to the wizard's house. He proceeds to the village green for a bit, and performs his morning exercises, emptying his mind of all but his prayers to Irori.
An hour later, the shadows have shortened significantly as the sun rises, and the town comes alive. Tarric waves cheerfully to passersby as he walks to the wizard's house and knocks on the front door.
The innkeeper smiles warmly at you. "Of course I will look after them. They saved the town from an army of the walking dead! I'm certain bards will write songs about it!"
On the eastern edge of town is a single tower, leaning slightly to the south, made of bricks and timber. This is the home of Holgast, the town’s local sage and mystic. Tarric knocks on the door to the tower and waits.
Finally Tarric knocks again, louder this time. After a few moments he hears some rustling inside. A few moments later the door opens. An older man with grey hair stands in the doorway, wearing a purple sleeping robe and cap.
"What's all the excitement? Why have you woken me at such an early hour? Can't you come back after lunch?"
"Um. No, not really," Tarric says as he pushes his glasses back on his nose. "Wizard Holgast...I don't know if you have any titles, sorry...I was told by the mayor that you had the most extensive writings on local history available and were a learned and puissant man. I was hoping that you had something similar to Barlow and MacCabe's work "On Figments of Facts in Fables" or Garthrock Firbrow's "The Voices of My Forefathers."
"Oh. Sorry. I forgot, I am Frater Abol of the Repository at Riddleport. I was on my way to Kaer Maga to establish a new Repository there when, through Irori's guidance, I found myself lending aid to the men who had entered the Tomb. Irori's wisdom be upon you."
Diplomacy 1d20 + 6 ⇒ (11) + 6 = 17
I'm going to be camping from Friday to Monday, so don't expect any updates after tonight.
Holgast adjusts his glasses and examines you more closely. "Ah, a man of intellect and learning! I haven't had such a visitor in a long time. Come in!"
Holgast leads you to into his home. The main room has a fireplace and several bookshelves with books stacked on the floor, the coffee table, and several end tables. He sits down and stretches his legs out on a couch leaving no room for anyone else. He motions to a nearby chair with only a few books on it. He pulls out a pipe and begins to smoke.
"I have Norbert's Guide to Thorny Plants that might interest you, or perhaps Uptal the First's Tales of Kassen. I might be willing to trade some of the books in my collection for newer titles."
"Oh excellent. I have only seen a seventh edition Guide to Thorny Plants...this one appears to be the third edition! And it has a monograph from Norbert as well! Amazing..."
Tarric, beaming, breathes in the must and smell of vellum of a well stocked library. After a moment or two, he turns to Holgast.
"I actually need to do some research on local legends...about the time of Kassen actually, so if you recommend the Tales of Kassen would you mind if I looked through it here?"
|Yarroth the Younger|
Anton, looking bleary eyed and hung over, is already sitting in the main hall when Drummer arrives. He is sipping at a weak soup, and drinking from a tankard, while alternately taking large gulps from a waterskin. He looks up at the bard and manages a nod and a weak smile.
"The barkeep said this was 'hair of the dog,' but to be honest, this soup tastes more like it has dog hair in it. Some bacon and eggs would be nice, but I don't feel like eating a damn thing right now."
He motions for Drummer to join him.
"If it's not too much trouble, I'd like to know a bit more about what you were discussing with that woman last night. I caught something about the people responsible for the desecration of the crypt, and if we can aid her in bringing them to justice, I'm in."
Since I don't want to get bogged down too much with a lot of running around between adventures, why doesn't everyone give me a quick list of things they'd like to accomplish before meeting back up with Aeda. I'll figure out any rolls that might be necessary. Although feel free to RP and discuss among yourselves all you want. Sound good to everyone?
Tarric: Since you did well on your diplomacy check, Holgast is happy to let you browse books in exchange for tales, rumors, and other info from beyond the village. You get the sense he's a bit desperate for learned company. If you'd like to take a book with you, he wants a new book in exchange. Eventually he falls asleep in the middle of one of your tales, despite it still being mid-morning. Give me a short list of questions about Kassen and I'll let you know what you turn up.
My plan: Check to see if there is a library in town, or anyone rich enough to have a lot of books. I want to learn stories of Kassen and Iramine. At the inn, I will try to learn whether they know of a place called The Ranger's Lament, and check whether they remember any treasure hunters coming through who might have turned into our bloated zombified friends. I will also ask about the history of Kassen (the hero) under the pretense of wanting background material for the epic of our heroes. Additionally, Drummer will be asking around to learn more about Aeda. Specifically, how long has she been in town, what's she been interested in, what's the story that's been circulating (does her claim of having heard about the bandits from townsfolk stand up).
"Anton, my good man," Drummer chides gently as he takes a seat beside the burly youth, "You may be a hero of Kassen now, but the alcohol doesn't respect you any more than when you were a farming boy."
He then goes on to recap the conversation of the night before, and his planned investigations.
|Yarroth the Younger|
>My plan: Check to see if there is a library in town, or anyone rich enough to have a lot of books. I want to learn stories of Kassen and Iramine.
Holgast is your best bet for that, and Tarric already has that covered.
>At the inn, I will try to learn whether they know of a place called The Ranger's Lament
They have heard of it. It's a small tavern in Tamran, but not well known.
>check whether they remember any treasure hunters coming through who might have turned into our bloated zombified friends.
Nothing that comes to mind.
>I will also ask about the history of Kassen (the hero) under the pretense of wanting background material for the epic of our heroes.
You get quite a few tales about his adventures in the areas around Lake Encarthan. Before his adventuring career he served in the Lastwall Militia.
>Additionally, Drummer will be asking around to learn more about Aeda. Specifically, how long has she been in town, what's she been interested in, what's the story that's been circulating (does her claim of having heard about the bandits from townsfolk stand up).
Diplomacy: 1d20 + 5 ⇒ (20) + 5 = 25
She came on a river barge a few days prior. She asked about travelers coming and going in town, particularly if any wore or carried masks.
The story about town is about the walking dead, not bandits.
>Who was Asar?
Asar was an old adventuring companion of Kassen's. They went there separate ways after dividing the loot from a vault. Kassen decided it was enough wealth to retire with, so he founded the town of Kassen.
>Who was Iramine?
Another of Kassen's companions, an elf, who got a portion of the vault's treasures as well.
>Where are they from and where were their likely homes/final resting places?
Asar's resting place is in the crypt with Kassen. Iramine was an elf, and could still be alive. It doesn't say where she is from, but Kassen met her in Riddleport, Varisia.
>What is so special about the amulets and the vault that Kassen and Asar went to?
Knowledge Religion: 1d20 + 6 ⇒ (17) + 6 = 23
It doesn't mention the amulets at all. Hints about the vault indicate it may have held treasures from the days of the Whispering Tyrant.
>will try to find someone who might sell him a set of thieves tools, as well as re-checking all his equipment to make sure he is ready to go.
Knowledge Local: 1d20 + 5 ⇒ (14) + 5 = 19
A halfling known as Jimes “Short Change” Iggins is a waiter at the Seven Silvers tavern. He can hook you up with thieves tools for 30 gp.
>How much and where could he get some potions of cure moderate wounds??
Father Prasst has two potions of cure moderate wounds he will sell you for 250 gp each. He also has a wand of cure light wounds with 22 charges for 300 gp.
A few days have passed since the events at the Crypt of the Everflame and life in the town is beginning to return to normal. The folks are still quite wary of the dark, worried that some overlooked undead fiend might stalk from the crypt. Aeda is waiting for you at the docks in front of a large river barge.
|Yarroth the Younger|
Anton arrives, wearing a simple white shirt and deerskin breeches and some simple boots. A brightly colored Varisian kapena is loosely knotted around his neck. His armor and weapons are neatly packed on top of a ruck sack with supplies for the journey.
He nods at Yarroth."Don't worry, I don't get sea-sick. I think." Seeing Aeda, he smiles and waves hello.
"How long is the journey? I don't think I've ever been very far from Kassen my entire life. This is sort of exciting, really."
Aeda smiles as you approach. "Welcome to the Black Mist. Captain Walren has agreed to give us a lift to Tamran. It should take us 6 days to get there."
The Black Mist is a simple wooden barge about 60 feet long and 20 feet wide. The back third of the vessel is one large cabin that contains eight cots. The rest of the hold carries cargo. The dwarven captain is on deck, overseeing his human first mate.
"I most certainly agree." Tarric says, rubbing his back after sitting on the hard bench for only a few minutes. "I think sleeping on my pack is going to be more comfortable than this deck."
Tarric glances around and leans in close, as if he is attempting to be conspiratorial and inconspicuous. "I did get more information. I will tell you later when there aren't so many people around."
Anton nods to Tarric and chuckles. "As you wish. 'Loose lips sink ships'...something I heard somewhere once, I forget where."
Anton walks over to the captain, and tips his fingers to his brow in an informal salute. "Well met, Captain Walren. If you need a strong hand on deck, let me know."
"Excellent." Drummer walks over to Aeda and greets her warmly, "Aeda, so good to see you. Thanks again for arranging passage on this fine vessel."
Drummer looks the ship over approvingly, then he turns to address the captain, "Sir. Many thanks for agreeing to carry us to Tamran. I'm sure it will be a pleasure to travel with you."
Is this a mule- or ox-drawn river barge we're on? How many crew members are there? What do I know about the trip to Tamran (is it safe?)
|Yarroth the Younger|
Tarric thinks for a moment. "I haven't been to Tamran yet, and have not read anything about it from the last hundred years, so I don't really know. Cities in general are dirty, smelly, and crowded, but ultimately really interesting and exciting because of all the people and things to do. Travelers from all over congregate there for trade and travel. Should be fun!"
I apologize for not giving this game my attention lately. Things have been a bit busy lately. I'm going to push this along to skip most of the journey. I also described the boat poorly. There is a below deck, and the back third of that is where the sleeping cabin is. The boat is 60 feet long and 20 feet wide. The hold is filled with iron ingots. It is a single sail barge.
Captain Walren welcomes everyone aboard. He appreciates offers for assistance, but as none of you have experience sailing he and his mate take care of managing the sails. He does suggest that a few of you keep your swords handy on the top deck. Bandits are unlikely to attack, but a strong presence will keep them at bay. The captain is a quiet dwarf who enjoys quietly whistling to himself as he guides the boat with a steady hand on the till.
The mate, Ewem, is a Kellid man and doesn't speak common very well. He keeps to himself, managing the sails and other duties.
Aeda is pleasant and friendly, but refuses to talk about business during the voyage. At any attempt to bring it up she says that all of that can be discussed when you get to the lodge in Tamran. You do manage to get her to tell stories of other Pathfinder's exploits to pass the time on your voyage.
After 3 days of river travel you reach Lake Encarthan. The weather turns overcast and drizzly for the next three days of the journey. Captain Walren keeps the boat about a mile from shore as you make your way toward Tamran. The lake has rougher water, and a few of you feel a bit queasy when it gets particularly choppy. The only notable event is the sighting of a pair of electric eels, a reminder that you don't wish to fall into the water.
On the 6th day Captain Walren announces that you are almost to Tamran. He plans to push on during the night, and seems a bit edgy. As night darkens it begins to rain, the clouds obscuring the moon. Does anyone want to stay on deck during the dreary night or do people wish to stay dry and sleep below deck in the cabin?
|Yarroth the Younger|
"Well met, heroes of Kassen. If there's to be three of us -- at least, we haven't heard yet from Tarric -- let's set watches. Tamran's a bigger city than we're used to, and it would be no good to show up weary."
Then he adds in a conspiratorial whisper, "Besides, Aeda isn't all she seems. We would be wise to keep our wits about us in her presence."
"I'd prefer the first watch if it's all the same to you gentlemen. I'd much rather stay up late than wake up early. If there are four of us, let's work in pairs. Perhaps one warrior and one less hardy type in each set. I'd propose that Yarroth and I work together, then Anton and Tarric."
"Good night everyone. I will think of you when I am sleeping warm and snug below decks. Do you really feel the need for a watch? We are out in the middle of a lake, I doubt that there are wolves that can reach us out here. In any regard, if you do set a watch, wake me when you feel it is my turn. Until then, stay dry!" Tarric waves vaguely at the clouds, then takes off his glasses and heads below decks, cleaning the misty spray off of the lenses.
"I'd better suit up with my armor then, rather than get caught asleep and unprepared. Sleeping might be a little difficult, but I've slept in livestock stalls before, so...wake me at the first sign of trouble."
"We'll switch off then, three watches, with everybody doing two. Numbers aren't my strong suit, so if that works out..." Anton makes a show of counting on his fingers, then gets bored and finds a tarp to drape over himself to get some kind of rest in the weather. Within minutes he is softly snoring away, his shield and sword leaning nearby.
Drummer sits huddled against what little shelter he can find and watches nervously over the rain-shrouded lake. To pass the time, he taps out beats softly against his leg. After doing that for some time, he softly sings a tune as old as the hills and looks out from his nook into the darkness. Detect magic, just for the heck of it. He had heard once that it was in the language of the elements themselves, and though he has no idea what it means, he knows that the world reveals a few more of its secrets if he sings it well.
After a few minutes he falls silent again and listens to the rhythm of the rain and the waves slapping against the boat.
|Yarroth the Younger|
Drummer Perception: 1d20 + 1 ⇒ (11) + 1 = 12
Yarroth Perception: 1d20 + 10 ⇒ (2) + 10 = 12
Mate Ewem Perception: 1d20 + 1 ⇒ (7) + 1 = 8
Thick cloud cover blankets the night's faint moonlight.
Drummer Perception: 1d20 + 1 ⇒ (17) + 1 = 18
Yarroth Perception: 1d20 + 10 ⇒ (19) + 10 = 29
Mate Ewem Perception: 1d20 + 1 ⇒ (3) + 1 = 4
Drummer and Yarroth spot a small craft that sneaked up on the barge's aft. Three men armed with crossbows and longswords crouch in the other vessel. They look ready to board when the boat comes alongside in a few seconds.
Drummer Initiative: 1d20 + 2 ⇒ (14) + 2 = 16
Yarroth Initiative: 1d20 + 5 ⇒ (20) + 5 = 25
Mate Ewem Initiative: 1d20 ⇒ 9
Pirates Initiative: 1d20 + 1 ⇒ (4) + 1 = 5
Yarroth, you react first with alarming speed.