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DM Stephens Serpents Skull Campaign - Chp1:The Smugglers Shiv (Inactive)

Game Master terok

With the defeat of the dark Dryad and surviving many of the islands others challenges, the party is well on their way to becoming the Shiv's masters...only Ieana stands in their way...


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Male Human (Varisian) Cleric (Varisian Pilgrim archetype) 5

Mihai symbolically takes a backwards step from the rest of the party and from the Red Mountain Devil to show sign of his disapproval of what appears to be companion consensus. He speaks no words, makes no overt sign of conflict with the beast... but those who have walked beside him upon the island will know that the path they are choosing is not one he is willing to walk along... Mihai will have no part of their ill-advised choice.

Note: Y'all can go ahead with the choice to engage the RMD this way... just know that Mihai is not behind you on it... which shouldn't really surprise anyone.
The choice will weigh upon Mihai's opinion of your characters, but as a player unless RMD has some objection - please proceed as you plan. The fallout (if any) will come after (hopefully) rescue comes and we end up in town for the preamble to the next part of the AP.
I'm out of town for a couple of days on training as well.


Seems like for at least the moment you have agreed to his proposal?
If so just a couple of last things to wrap up and we can move on.
1. What do you plan to do with the Altar? Destroy it? Leave it alone?
2. It will take you about a week to finish repairs on the lighthouse. You figure you can wrap up anything else in the temple and search the remaining wrecks.
Is there anything else any of you wish to do?


"Grollik, before we agree to the exchange, tell us as best you can what you intend to do in the wider world. There are vast tribes of men, more like us than those you encountered before we arrived. There are men of dark hearts that will seek to have you as their servant, as Ileana did to have you fetch a snake. There are powerful men who will seek to slay you, as they will think you are a threat to them. Here on the island, there are none to threaten you now; we have seen to that. Others may come and go, especially with the news we have to tell, but they will be more like us. So tell us, how will you make your way in the wider world?"


I am not surrre...I am no one's pet or theirrr prrrey! The female used her magic on me, I would not help herrr. I had planned to kill herrr for touching the stones that made me. It did show me the thunder though...I would like to find out how to stop that magic.
My hope is that I would meet otherrrs, like you. See otherrr things and decide...decide what I want to do next. I just know that staying herrre...is not enough anymorrre.

@ Aedalis, You arrre with these Prrathfindgerrrsss as well? The little one says they arrre like a family, but not as close. Do you think they would accept me? He says they know many things and see many things...I want that.


Male Human 5th level Druid
Stats:
Init +1 Perception +11 AC 20 Tch 13 FF 19 HP 50 Fort+6(+7 vs disease) Ref+2 Will+7 Spd 20' CMB +8 CMD 21 Acro-2*Climb+6*Esc Art-2*Spellcraft+5 Stealth-2*Swim +6 ACP -2 (shield)

Nim senses Mihai's disapproval and joins him in stepping back...

We have what we came for... the rest is up to you... I am out. Nim remarks to his remaining companions.


"Then we" he says, gesturing to Anton and himself "Can speak to those that sent us here, the Pathfinders, about finding a way to get you to wider lands. They will be coming back here. When we tell them what we found: you and the ruins on this island, they will want to come and see for themselves. Despite our initial (and in some cases persistent) distrust, we can do that for you."

"But if we are ever to get away from this island ourselves to be able to deliver that message, we will need the reflector. And anything else the other men gave that may help us could only hasten that effort."


Male Human (Varisian) Cleric (Varisian Pilgrim archetype) 5

Mihai continues to stand and passively observe.

Mihai would want to see the altar broken once Tragershen and Aedalis are happy they are finished with it.


HP 39/30, AC- 11 (15 MA) T- 11 FF- 10 (14MA), CMD- 12, F +6, R +4, W +7, P +7, In +5

Aedalis would have been calling for the altar to be destroyed, simply because an altar literally producing blood is abhorrent to him.

I was a hireling of sorts for the Pathfinders; not commissioned like my companions here. Nevertheless, I may have some sway with them.

Despite his misgivings in earlier weeks, Aedalis shrugged and implored the remaining members of the party still considering.

He has had his chance to attack us when we were vulnerable many times over. Grolik has taken a leap of faith and given us the reflector with no strings attached. I say we make our own leap of faith and trust that we can "civilise" him before a ship reaches Sargava. The treasure he has offered will surely cover his passage and we can split the rest.


Male Human (Varisian) Cleric (Varisian Pilgrim archetype) 5

Mihai harrumphs with mirthless laughter, before offering some quietly spoken words "Lup în piele de oaie." shaking his head before turning and walking to further distance himself out of earshot and all measure of connection or concern.

Varisian: Beware of false prophets which come to you in sheep's clothing, but inwardly, they are ravening wolves.


Aedalis Omathi wrote:

Aedalis would have been calling for the altar to be destroyed, simply because an altar literally producing blood is abhorrent to him.

I was a hireling of sorts for the Pathfinders; not commissioned like my companions here. Nevertheless, I may have some sway with them.

Despite his misgivings in earlier weeks, Aedalis shrugged and implored the remaining members of the party still considering.

He has had his chance to attack us when we were vulnerable many times over. Grolik has taken a leap of faith and given us the reflector with no strings attached. I say we make our own leap of faith and trust that we can "civilise" him before a ship reaches Sargava. The treasure he has offered will surely cover his passage and we can split the rest.

A smile crosses the beasts face, You have given something back to me alrrready forrr ourrr barrrgain. I will not forrget it. He nods to the party members that appear to have decided to take a "leap" of faith. I will brrring you back this thing you wish. The rrrest we can discuss at your stone trrreeehouse.

He comes back with the reflector, its fairly large and his flight is very ungainly but he makes it back. He drops it before you and flies off again after mumbling something about seeing you later.

You get back to the lighthouse late that day. You spot Grolik flying over you periodically and he lands just after you arrive.
The sentiment with the castaways is similar to the groups, split between distrust and hope.

That night something unusual happens...Mihai groans, mumbles, and starts crying out...he is still asleep when you see it manifest!


The sounds wake all of you except for your priestly friend,
A ghostly shape manifests inside the lighthouse, right beside Mihai...it appears to be a man its hands outstretched...it seems to be talking to you but you can't hear anything...after a short time the spirit seems to anger and it strikes out at Mihai! He turns in discomfort but it doesn't seem to hurt him physically...it then seems to fade away.

Mihai wakes suddenly...

Mihai finds no sleep that night and is fatigued. He can gain no new spells if he used any. When the spirit is described to Mihai he seems to recognize it...it is the spirit from his dreams.

Jasks speaks, If I see it again, should I try to drive it away with my divine powers? What does it want Mihai?


Male Human (Varisian) Cleric (Varisian Pilgrim archetype) 5

Mihai's face is beset by bags beneath his eyes as his rest was clearly not restful. He sighs wearily "I know not... but I must return to the temple... something unfinished..." A curse of the vagaries of spirits and curses both... words would tell... words would straighten the path... but the road must still be walked no matter how circuitous.


Mihai:

Something when you speak about the temple just doesn't feel right...the Altar should be destroyed but you are not sure if the two are connected...the dreams started before you entered the temple...ever since you discovered the last Azlanti ruin and the armor.


"Then let us set off for the temple immediately. Perhaps through trial and error we can determine the cause of the unfinished task. I am still determined to find a way to bring down that altar..."

Shall we ask some of the other castaways to try and reopen the stone mouth at some interval?


Male Halfling (Molthuni) Barbarian 1 Ranger (Trapper) 3

Anton nods. "Maybe it's as simple as that. Who knows what could happen from breaking such powerful magic?"


Sometimes it isn't supposed to be easy being you! :]

Without a sure direction you head back to the temple. The question is how to break the Altar...it seems to be solid stone. Your slashing weapons could get damaged...except for maybe Nim's magical scimitar, but that could take hours to cut open. Anton's hammer may chip away at it, but the handle could break after enough punishment.

You perform the ritual and head into the temple...a few minutes later you are standing in from of the blood altar, thinking of how to begin...

How do you plan to destroy it?

Mihai, now that you have spent some time around the altar you begin to think that it is putting off an aura similar to desecration.


Male Human 5th level Druid
Stats:
Init +1 Perception +11 AC 20 Tch 13 FF 19 HP 50 Fort+6(+7 vs disease) Ref+2 Will+7 Spd 20' CMB +8 CMD 21 Acro-2*Climb+6*Esc Art-2*Spellcraft+5 Stealth-2*Swim +6 ACP -2 (shield)

Nim stares at the altar for a minute, before finally offering. If we do not have the means to destroy it physically, perhaps we can do so metaphysically...

Nim turns to Mihai. It is bleeding... perhaps you should heal it? Use your divine essence to disrupt it?


Mihai tries a channel...the blood goes pale and a small crack appears in the Altar...

He begins to pound away on the Altar with his magical energies...when his channeling runs out he begins to touch the altar and again the magical energy fractures the altar...

Channel Positive Energy 2d6 ⇒ (6, 1) = 7
Channel Positive Energy 2d6 ⇒ (3, 1) = 4
Channel Positive Energy 2d6 ⇒ (4, 1) = 5
Channel Positive Energy 2d6 ⇒ (6, 1) = 7
Channel Positive Energy 2d6 ⇒ (2, 6) = 8
Channel Positive Energy 2d6 ⇒ (1, 5) = 6
Channel Positive Energy 2d6 ⇒ (5, 1) = 6

Cure Moderate Wounds 2d8 + 4 ⇒ (6, 4) + 4 = 14

The final touch from him shatters the altar and a swell of blood gorges from it and flows into the other room for a moment before stopping...a pulse releases at the same time flowing through you, you can't really see it but you can feel it as the air ripples.
The lingering whispers in the air turn to screams and howls for a moment before going silent...the oppressive feeling is the room disappears. You think whatever evil held this place, is lifted!

400xp each.

Mihai still has that unsettled feeling though...


Male Human (Varisian) Cleric (Varisian Pilgrim archetype) 5

Slumping to his knees Mihai is spent by his actions, though is contented that the altar has been broken. The weight of his unrestful sleep combined with the violent expulsion of Sinishakti's grace leaves the Varisian Pilgrim briefly able to do no more than breathe heavily and unevenly.

As the unsettlement remains Mihai's heart sinks further and the bags under his eyes grow "No... no... this is not right... bones... armor... dammit what must I do." wresting with doubt for a half minute before forcing himself back to his feet, exhausted but resolute "I will walk on... the place where this armor that I bear as a yoke around my neck... we must go there. I had thought.. but no... something else..."


It is just over half a day's march to the other ruin so you decide to head back to the camp and then be fresh for the march to the other ruin.
Again Mihai's sleep provides no real rest. The spirit does not appear but Mihai wakes several of you at various times as he cries out.
You have never seen the stalwart cleric so obviously out of sorts.

You march to the other ruin bent on putting the spirit to rest once and for all. You arrive at the ruin just after the showers have stopped. You start by going back into the Azlanti building. The crypt remains undisturbed and the bones lay in the same position. You start with a thorough search of the inside of the crypt. Only Anton's keen eye's spot something you missed before...a hidden panel.
After a quick search for traps and finding none Anton opens the panel. Inside is a small sealed silver and gold box. Again Anton finds no traps.
Mihai's desperate hands snatch the box from Anton...everyone is a little surprised by his reaction...he quickly opens the box...inside is a journal, sealed within against time. This is what you seek...

The spirit appears again...this time it is smiling...you hear the voice of Larissia speak...


The spirit...it is sorry to have bothered you so but it couldn't fully appear as it is tied to the journal...it didn't want to be forgotten...like this ruin. Read it, share his story, the story of Jortal. He can finally rest, finally join his wife and people. He thanks you for finally freeing him.


SO ENDS CHAPTER 1...


Tragershen carefully opens the journal. Does he have an idea how old it is, what language it is written in?


Male Human 5th level Druid
Stats:
Init +1 Perception +11 AC 20 Tch 13 FF 19 HP 50 Fort+6(+7 vs disease) Ref+2 Will+7 Spd 20' CMB +8 CMD 21 Acro-2*Climb+6*Esc Art-2*Spellcraft+5 Stealth-2*Swim +6 ACP -2 (shield)

XP logged. New total = 11636. Good job everyone! Looking forward to chapter 2!


Chapter 2!

The answers to all of your questions will be found in chapter 2...

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