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DM Zyren's Heart of Light

Game Master Zyrenity

An epic search for the Amethyst heptagon leads a party of fresh graduates through the northern reaches of Ustalav. Based in Karcau, the party visits places like the dark Castle Jarovich or the dangerous alleys of Carrion Hill.


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Narumek:

As you put weapons and monsters together, the wall becomes more and more unstable - cracks split the formerly solid stones and after you kill the lich, the wall collapses...but before you can step over the rubble, you suddenly hear someone calling from behind

You there, friend or foe?!

that is unmistakenly Aramis' voice...

---------

Andreanu also raises his glass, but he seems thoughtful

I understand...and I know very-well what you would like me...or rather us to do, but I ask you, is it necessary at all? He will never reach the peak of this city's politics if he won't win the tournament and I just checked the standings...Solaric looks like the sure winner. So why bother at all? Once he has lost the tournament he will have to leave the city to escape from the constant embarassment.

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

We have to finish the events of the evening first, Jo - before you wake up again :)


Female Tiefling (Succubi) Witch HP:57/57, - AC: 11/T:11/FF:10 - Percep: +15(Dark Vision) F: +3/R: +3/W: +8 - CMB: 3 - CMD: 14, Speed: 30ft, Init: +1 Witch 8

"You might leave, I might leave, but this man did not come here and spend so much time planning his scheme to simply leave empty handed. That would be the choice of the intelligent man, this man is simply cunning like a rat, and likely vindictive. He has access to resources his family can provide, and even if he does fail in his plans, he will leave quite a mess in his efforts. Better to cut it all short now, rather than deal with the victims later."

"Solaric will win, the Watch will be monitoring Solaric to ensure Aramais does not attempt revenge, and Aramais will simply vanish. We might not have to 'do' anything, his own vices will lead him into the mousetrap"


Male Varisian Human
Common Stats:
Init:7, Perc:16 // HP:82 // AC:19, Touch:14, FF:15 // F:10, R:11, W:5 // CMB:12, CMD:25

Cairn listened intently to Salvator talk 'business' with Victoria. He wasnt as quick as Adreanu so he had only surmised part of the scenario. It didnt help that he'd been absent from Karcau for a while.

Sounds like you have this man on the spot. Do you mind explaining this mousetrap?


Salvator nods and adds

Yeah, that kind of mouse trap sounds very interesting...what kind of bait do you have for such a fat rat?


Female Tiefling (Succubi) Witch HP:57/57, - AC: 11/T:11/FF:10 - Percep: +15(Dark Vision) F: +3/R: +3/W: +8 - CMB: 3 - CMD: 14, Speed: 30ft, Init: +1 Witch 8

"Soup. Soup like you wouldn't believe, and women for which you would give your soul."

"He will walk in there freely, indeed I suspect that wild horses couldn't drag him away once he gets scent of the lure. I am only concerned about his fellows straggling off. This will be very clean and very thorough. I will begin my plans shortly, and will ensure that you are aware of the alloted time for the activity."

DMZZ, Are we up to the last event? I'm hoping to nail him just before the final event, or just after it


Male Varisian Human
Common Stats:
Init:7, Perc:16 // HP:82 // AC:19, Touch:14, FF:15 // F:10, R:11, W:5 // CMB:12, CMD:25

Must be lobster bisque or clam chowder even.

Cairn couldnt think of any woman he'd give his soul for. It just wasnt how Sczarni men did things.


The tournament ends in 2 days.

Soup? Andreanu sounds a bit dissapointed ...beautiful ragazze...that sounds like it could lure Aramis into the Nine Hells...yeah... obviously he begins to like the plan Would you mind sharing their identities?


Zyren:

Stephen Livgrace wrote:
"I feard that you would say that...I guess your normal adventures are one of the deadliest things one can do, eh?"

"Indeed I have faced many deadly foes and some rather difficult situations. However, one cannot really think about them at the moment. When the call comes, you must simply act and do what needs to be done. However, when the day is over, I sing my praises to the Inheritor for guiding me safely! Now let's see what we have here!"

Stephen Livgrace wrote:
"Ugh...what's that?"

"It looks like a coffin of sorts. Perhaps it is chamber that houses an undead fiend." Solaric looks at the Sarcophagus and inspects the symbol of the roses and hour glasses upon it. He also looks around it to see if it has been opened recently.

What does he know of this symbol and/or sarcophagus?

Knowledge, Nobility 1d20 + 4 ⇒ (1) + 4 = 5
Knowledge, Religion 1d20 + 5 ⇒ (14) + 5 = 19

Perception 1d20 + 7 ⇒ (8) + 7 = 15


Female Tiefling (Succubi) Witch HP:57/57, - AC: 11/T:11/FF:10 - Percep: +15(Dark Vision) F: +3/R: +3/W: +8 - CMB: 3 - CMD: 14, Speed: 30ft, Init: +1 Witch 8

"They are my sisters, of course."

"I will come to you tomorrow night with the plan, in the meantime I must go and begin laying the foundations and creating the stage for this play to unfold upon"

"Tomorrow my dears, tomorrow we will ensure this man is removed... for all our sakes. Cairn, you can accompany me to the tournament, a great vantage point from which you can learn about our marks and their manners. Come dressed as a gentleman, if you don't have attire appropriate then I know a man who can arrange you some fine couture, pret a porter I'm afraid as we don't have time for bespoke"

To Andreneau she offers "If you are ever offered a bowl of soup by a pretty lady, be sure you pay the bill up front. The cakes, on the other hand, they are perfectly safe." then with a regal nod, she departs.


Male Half-Elf Wizard/9

DMZ:
I wait until you announce the new day.


Male Varisian Human
Common Stats:
Init:7, Perc:16 // HP:82 // AC:19, Touch:14, FF:15 // F:10, R:11, W:5 // CMB:12, CMD:25

Id be happy to accompany you Victoria. I am afraid that I lack the haughty costume such an affair requires so we'll have to stop at your man's establishment.


Female Tiefling (Succubi) Witch HP:57/57, - AC: 11/T:11/FF:10 - Percep: +15(Dark Vision) F: +3/R: +3/W: +8 - CMB: 3 - CMD: 14, Speed: 30ft, Init: +1 Witch 8

Victoria immediately marches Cairn to her nice merchant friend once more. "I brought Kirk here once to buy his first fine outfit" she has a distant look as she allows herself a momentary sentimentality.


Hellknight 4, Bard 2

DM Zyren:
That depends entirely on your actions... for I am Narumek, the Unforgiving. he calls back, sending his lights out to verify the identity of the newcomer.


Male Varisian Human
Common Stats:
Init:7, Perc:16 // HP:82 // AC:19, Touch:14, FF:15 // F:10, R:11, W:5 // CMB:12, CMD:25

Cairn caught the mention of a supposed friend and let it slip by without comment. In the Family, one never pried into others personal lives...unless its interferring with business...

Are fine outfits right expensive?


Female Tiefling (Succubi) Witch HP:57/57, - AC: 11/T:11/FF:10 - Percep: +15(Dark Vision) F: +3/R: +3/W: +8 - CMB: 3 - CMD: 14, Speed: 30ft, Init: +1 Witch 8

"Depends on who one asks. To the average person? yes. It isn't so much about the expense, its about being right on trend with the latest fashion. An expensive outfit may as well be a hempen sack if it is of an outdated style and colour"


Male Varisian Human
Common Stats:
Init:7, Perc:16 // HP:82 // AC:19, Touch:14, FF:15 // F:10, R:11, W:5 // CMB:12, CMD:25

Hahaha! You are right there M'lady. I would say then that I was an average person as I have no idea of what would be considered the 'latest fashion'. I will accept your expertise in such matters.


Female Tiefling (Succubi) Witch HP:57/57, - AC: 11/T:11/FF:10 - Percep: +15(Dark Vision) F: +3/R: +3/W: +8 - CMB: 3 - CMD: 14, Speed: 30ft, Init: +1 Witch 8

"If you intend to become an artisan catering to the well heeled clientele of the courts, rubbing shoulders with the lords and ladies, then this is something you must develop an eye for. It will be your camouflage, your uniform that allows you to go about your business unchecked by the various manservants and functionaries all around who watch for those who don't belong. A manservant at a door will check your passing as sure as a mastiff at a warehouse does. The clothes and bearing changes, but your game does not"

"Until you develop the full set of social graces expected of a fine courtier, you should seek to dress in clothes of a quality cut but of more conservative appearance. You will be taken for a distant relative of an aristocrat, and be given certain social flexibilities. The expectations won't be so great, and you can remain a face in the crowd with some anonymity"

"I say all this in the hope that this upcoming job wont be your last with us, but rather you might stay on for a while"


The tailor quickly takes the measurements and fater he got his instructions from Victoria, begins working at once...

------

Solaric:

Both symbols are typically used in reverence of Pharasma.

Stephen raises his torch to get a better view of the sarcophagus and sighs

We open it, right? I guess the Inheritor sides with the courageous ones?


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

Narumek:

The newcomer indeed is Aramis, he seems a bit frightened and closes the distance to you rather cautiously

Yeah, I know who you are - and as long as you are no maniacal undead, you're a very welcome sight!


Zyren:

"Well, if there are undead horrors to be fought, there is where we are likely to find them. Are you ready, my friend?" Solaric waits for the nod and proceeds to push open the sarcophagus!


Solaric:

count to three and then push! Livgrace says after putting the torch down.

STR check DC 12


Hellknight 4, Bard 2

DM Zyren:
That I am not. Narumek replies. I will be continuing this way--you may accompany me if you like, but do not cross me, nor try to foil my progress. Narumek says, recalling his lights and continuing on through the passageway.


Zyren:

Strength Check 1d20 + 3 ⇒ (4) + 3 = 7

"Uggh! This does not want to budge! Here let's try and push together."

Solaric recruits Stephen Livgrace's help and tries again.

Strength Check 1d20 + 3 ⇒ (5) + 3 = 8

"Perhaps we are not meant to open this Sarcophagus at this time. Iomedae guides me and leads me along strange paths sometimes. If this stone does not budge, there may be a reason for it. Perhaps we are meant to search elsewhere."


Narumek:

Yeah, no problem, just as you say!

Quickly Aramis closes the distance between you and follows you down a spiral stairwell you find only moments later.

These things are pretty handy.

he whispers, pointing at the lights.[/B]

Solaric and Narumek:

As Narumek and Aramis reach the foot of the spiral stairwell, they find themselves in a large domed chamber, in its centre is an old sarcophagus with delicate stonework on it and beside it are Stephen Livgrace and Solaric. It looks like they have just tried to push it open.

------

Anything else you want to do this evening, Cairn and Vicky?


Female Tiefling (Succubi) Witch HP:57/57, - AC: 11/T:11/FF:10 - Percep: +15(Dark Vision) F: +3/R: +3/W: +8 - CMB: 3 - CMD: 14, Speed: 30ft, Init: +1 Witch 8

No, just get attired and go have a look around. Tomorrow the web oflies and disinformation campaign will start to spread. :)


"Well met, gentlemen!" Solaric hails as he raises his gauntlet in greeting. "It appears that destiny and the work on the Inheritor has brought us together. Tell me my good knights, have you faced any horrors yet? I believe we have one right here, if you would kindly help us remove this lid?"


I killed scores of the worst horrors you can imagine.

Aramis says boldly without coming an inch closer.


"Aramis, I was not referring to the nightmares you face at night in your sleep, but actual undead horrors and evil constructs such as the vile flesh golem I recently smited down. It is a simple question to help us decide how to proceed. United as one against evil or alone against the fiends. Now, I ask you once again, will you help us remove this lid, or simply stand there trembling in your own fear?"


F-f-f-flesh golem? Aramis looks bact at the stairwell he just descended and says

Pff...I guess I'm better off alone! You just want to steal my glory...go and spoil someone else's triumph, hah! he turns around, but then hesitates Uh...can I have that torch?


"You refuse to help and not only do you walk with arrogance, you do not even come prepared to enter into battle in the dark of the night. I should tell you to simply leave, but I cannot in good conscious allow you to leave and fall victim to one of these evil horrors and what they have planned for you. I must once again offer for you to accompany us."


Male Varisian Human
Common Stats:
Init:7, Perc:16 // HP:82 // AC:19, Touch:14, FF:15 // F:10, R:11, W:5 // CMB:12, CMD:25

Checking himself out in the mirror after having been dressed by the tailor; cairn couldnt help but smile.

My uncle Dusty always said that 'every girl goes crazy for a sharp dressed man'.

He thanked the man and followed afer Victoria.


Hellknight 4, Bard 2

A few zombies, yes, but that is all so far. Well, we may as well continue together. There is another way where I have come from, but first let us see what lies in this tomb... Narumek says, leaning over and pushing against the sarcophagus along with the others.

Strength:1d20 + 3 ⇒ (11) + 3 = 14


As Narumek begins to push, Aramis has enough. He ignores Solaric's admonishings and hurries back up the stairs. As he reaches the top, he hears the heavy cover plate hit the ground...

Inside the sarcophagus lies a beautiful woman wearing Victorian-looking ball gown in black and red. Her skin is pale and framed by fiery red locks, she holds a holy symbol of Pharasma in her hands.

Stephen gasps as she sees her and stumbles back, falling over the torch he placed on the ground earlier.


"Did you all hear that noise? I'm not certain, but I think Aramis may have locked us in here. Stephen, could you kindly check to see that our way out of here remains intact. First, I want to see if this woman radiates any evil auras."

Solaric concentrates and looks into the spectrum of auras as he tries to determine if this beautiful woman is evil and has perhaps turned undead.


Hellknight 4, Bard 2

Narumek draws his sword and steps back, picking up the torch and hacking off the end in a few swipes. Soon it is a sharp looking stake...

There was a door with images of creatures and weapons, and when arranges properly, it opened. This seems to match one pairing from the door...a vampire and a wooden stake.


I...I know her...she looks like the woman in one of the paintings hanging in father's study!

Livgrace doesn't seem to have heard Solaric's proposal and scrambles to his feet. Slowly he moves closer to the sarcophagus no doubt about that, this must be my and Sasandra's great grandmother Lucretia.

As Narumek mutters his thoughts, Stephen turns totally pale.

You can't feel any evil, but that is due to the fact that the sarcophagus is enshrouded in some kind of anti-magic sphere, blocking your means of detection.


Male Half-Elf Wizard/9

Meanwhile Johenric sleeps and recovers from the exhausting travels...


Hellknight 4, Bard 2

If she is dead, she will not mind this... Narumek says, stepping forward. With a swift motion, he plunges the stake into the woman's chest.


"Stephen, this is very important! Tell me all you know about Lucretia! Was she a witch, or did she pass into the realm of undeath?! Think back to the family stories that were told!"

What does Solaric already know about this woman?

Knowledge, Religion 1d20 + 7 ⇒ (8) + 7 = 15

"Well it appears, Narumek is about to help us find some additional insight."

Solaric watches and readies an attack should she come to life!


As Narumek readies the stake to attack, Stephen lunges at him and both go down

Don't!

Solaric:

Lucretia Livgrace was married to Count Balthazar Livgrace, Count of Sinaria about 100 years ago, sadly, you don't remember more about her.


"Tell us more, Stephen! I know that Lucretia Livgrace was married to Count Balthazar Livgrace, Count of Sinaria about 100 years ago, but sadly I do not remember more. What else do you remember from your own family history? Is she a horror that we need to smite here in this tomb? I am just not sure why she has been brought into this tournament as one of our obstacles to overcome! I cannot help but think that undeath may have overcome her! However, due to the magic surrounding her, I am unable to determine if she is indeed evil or not!"


Male Half-Elf Wizard/9

During his sleep, Johenric's mind equals a clockwork...an unconscious clockwork trying to cope with any kind of information...


I...she...my grandmother used to recite a poem on dark winter nights, it was about her mother, Lucretia

She is the beauty of the night
Basking in the moonlit skies,
And all that’s best of dark and bright
Meet in her aspect and her eyes
Darken to predatory light
Which Heaven in daylight hours denies.

One shade the more, one ray the less
Would less enhance her nameless grace
Which waves in every raven tress
That softly press against her face,
Which thoughts of hunger doth express
With hope of entering my dwelling place.

Moon shines on her cheek, and shines on her brow
So soft, so enticing, so eloquent,
With smiles that win, and teeth and glow
That mutter of days in shadows spent
She entreats for entrance and once let in
She drinks the blood of the innocent.

I'm not sure this sarcophagus was placed here because of the tournament, I rather guess it was always here, but no one dared to open it?!

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

While Narumek and Solaric spend their night deep in the guts of Vizyalesh, the sun slowly rises above Karcau once more. A fresh breeze blows from Lake Prophyria and the sky is nearly cloudless today.


"Well, from what your poem says, I'd say she could possibly be a vampire. Drinking the blood of the innocent does not help her reputation. I'm afraid that Narumek had the right idea with those stakes. Would you reconsider, my friend?"


Yeah, the last phrase always made me shiver as a boy. But my grandmother said she was still a good countess...so, is she necessarily evil, I ask you? Maybe she has just killed peasants...I mean, she is my ancestor, we can't just kill her, we have to offer her a chance of redemption. You are a priest, you should know that we can't just judge her because of an old poem and Narumek's assumptions. We should wake and talk to her.


Male Half-Elf Wizard/9

DMZ:
The next day has been reached; correct DMZ?


"I have the courage and the patience to stay my sword, Stephen, but you must be prepared for the worst. Unfortunately, I have never been able to speak with the dead. However, I will certainly try to make contact with the soul that was Lucretia Livgrace."

Turning to the unforgiving knight, Solaric says, "When you are ready, Sir Narumek, I will begin."

Once he receives a nod from the dark knight (he does expect him to actually say too much) Solaric steps forth, longsword in hand and calls forth, opening himself up to the will of the Inheritor to guide him to make contact with the entity. Opening his arms, he calls out, "Almighty Inheritor, guide me now as I call forth your powers to allow me to make contact with the entity known as Lucretia Livgrace."

Solaric waits a moment and then begins. "Lucretia Livgrace!! I Solaric Zekkaran, priest of the Almighty Inheritor, Iomedae, brother of the House of the Vigilant Flame, call forth your soul to come and be present with us at this time. We would speak with you and look within your soul to see that you are pure of heart and at peace in the realm you now inhabit. Come forth now Lucretia Livgrace. You are being summoned now as I speak!"


Hellknight 4, Bard 2
DM Zyren/ Heart of Light wrote:

As Narumek readies the stake to attack, Stephen lunges at him and both go down

Don't!

FOOL! Narumek says, righting himself.

This is no mere old lady, do you not feel the magic here? She must be destroyed... he says, raising the stake again.

As Solaric speaks, he stays his hand, shaking his head. I think this unwise, Elf-knight. I have seen the signs... Do what you must, but I shall strike this creature down should it approach me. he says.


@ Jo: Correct

For a nerve-racking moment nothing happens, but then, as if woken from an eternal sleep, Lucretia slowly, very slowly, opens her eyes. Emerald eyes that possess a depth you have never seen before.

Withour rising, she answers

You have summoned me from my sleep Solaric Zekkaran, to test me? Who are you that you are allowed to demand something from the Countess of Sinaria?

she has a pleasant voice, but the underlying threat in it makes your spine crawl.


" I, Solaric Zekkaran, am given strength by none other than the almighty Inheritor, who even as a mortal led the Knight of Ozem against the Whispering Tyrant! I have called you from your sleep to learn the truth of Lucretia Livgrace and look deep within her soul to see her aura! Speak now and let it be known clearly so that your descendent, Stephen Livgrace, may hear the truth for the sake of the history of the Livgrace dynasty!"

Solaric concentrates to determine if her alignment can be ascertained with detect evil.


Then Solaric Zekkaran, knight of the mighty inheritor, tell me, what makes a being evil? And who defines what is good? Are all creatures of the night evil, hust because it is written in old tomes and preached by even older men? I have always cared for the ones I loved and I have always been a good ruler to the people of Sinaria. And if you free me from this coffin which holds me since many years, I promise you I will help you against the black flood coming from the north.

at the last sentence, Stephen seems most surprised and nudges you

How can she know?

Your detection magic is still blocked.

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