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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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@ Kirk:

The shop is closed and there's no light burning inside. No one responds to your knocking.

@ Pitr:

Your father pours the dark red, viscuous wine into your glass and says

I'm Vicenzo LaMotte, adventurer, soldier, sailor, amorist, heart breaker, fencer, discoverer, conquistador...You see, I got many talents.

Then his cheerful tone becomes suddenly serious

But only one son. Tell me about you Pitr, I only know you like women as much as I do, hah.

@ Victoria:

Sense Motive 18:

For a short moment, as you mention Andreanu's name, all three sisters seem a bit concerned and surprised.

Merca replies calmly

Mr. Salvator and his people will be save from our hospitality, as you wish. Return if you need our guidance, until then farewell, Victoria.


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

Sense Motive 1d20 + 8 ⇒ (11) + 8 = 19

Noting the 'mood'...

"His name is familiar to you? You have business with Salvatore?"


Accompanied by Merca's angry face, Murna bursts out

Oh yes tee-hee, the Sczarni of these lands and especially the noble ones like Mr. Salvator are as old as we are, we have met a couple of times, tee-hee.

Merca interrupts

BUT that is of no concern for little Vicky, you old chatterbox...


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

"Nothing is ever as it seems here in fair Karcau, even some demons have more a devilish nature"

Victoria grins to the sisters impishly; then bidding them good night she returns to her home for a good rest and a clean.


Human

For Solaric, it is nearly ten. He proceeds to the academy to meet with St. Just.


Male Human (Gundarian) Cavalier 4

Assuming Zahur wasn't able to find anything about the relationship between his sister and Baran, as well as sending a magical message, Zahur proceeds to Pettoria from Vizyalesh at around 10.


@ Zahur: Since Pitr is still in the last night, I just waited with the actions of the next day. I'll tell you later if you find something out.


M Chelish Fighter
DM Zyren/ Heart of Light wrote:
But only one son. Tell me about you Pitr, I only know you like women as much as I do, hah.

"Now that's true and not that I didn't enjoy my little encounter, but why did you send a spy? That seems kinda odd? Why not just come face to face?"

Pitr takes a drink of wine and then rolls two cigarillos offering one to his father. "Well, what to say about myself? I haven't been around near as much as you. Theodric tried to raise me as his own that is with Taldan honor and tradition. None of which particularly interests me. At least I got a good education at the Academy. Life's been more interesting since I left home to say the least."

Pitr speaks with Vicenzo until late in the night swapping unbelieveable tales of adventure perhaps exaggerated a bit. Then gets a room at the Madman nearly sleeping through the ten o'clock meeting.


@ Pitr:

Vicenzo scratches his chin and looks a a bit ashamed as he says

Yeah that...I spoke to Theodric and he didn't want me to tell you the truth...well he described you as a very sensitive person...anyway, so I decided to find out more about you by employing a kinky spy, hah!
I never felt any sympathy for the Taldans...in fact you have Andoran blood running through your veins. Theodric and I served in the Taldan navy, he as a conscript, I as a mercenary officer...we spent some months together, yet he was always so poor spirited...when we were offered to join a daring expedition he rather stayed at Cassomir...and took my girl instead of going on an adventurous journey...when I came back they had already left...yeah, that's the whole story in a nutshell.

@ All:

The next morning is hard to recognize as a morning at all...pouring rain, heavy clouds...a day perfectly made to spend at home...

@ Zahur:

As you reach Vizyalesh Academy you notice quite a hustle and bustle, pieces of furntiture are carried inside and outside and all kinds of craftsmen work at the building: The gargoyle-like statues are grinded off the walls, the interior is painted in lighter colours etc.
Someone has obviously decided to change the whole place.


Night Before

Kirk leads his mount into a comfortable-looking alley and pitches his bedroll under the shelter of an overhang for the night.

Morning

He wakes at dawn, knowing he has a few quick errands he needs to run before reuniting with the group. First, Kirk heads to the market in search of a jeweler or other merchant who could appraise the moonstone he found. When he finds a suitable enough merchant, he approaches and says, "I have something I need appraised, and I'll pay a gold piece for you to do it - or whatever it is you charge: but if I find out you ripped me off, I'll burn your life to the ground."

Intimidate 1d20 + 9 ⇒ (18) + 9 = 27


Human

Solaric, unsure what the day will bring wears his clerical robes over his armor and he pulls his cloak over his robes just before he walks out into the rain. He makes his way across the city to the Academy, walking contemplatively as he takes the time to enjoy every moment, no matter how miserable the weather may be. He looks around at the people of Karcau and tries to imagine their lives and what it must be like to live in their shoes. Along the way he looks for ways to be of service to the people around him.

Perception 1d20 + 6 ⇒ (9) + 6 = 15

He passes out coins (10 gold pieces deducted) to any beggars he meets and he happily greets people with a smile and a cheerful remark, such as "Good day, to you. This rain is sure to make the flowers grow!" He looks for the children and thinks about how innocent they are, and how a great evil threatens their lives. He thinks about the urgency of the task ahead of them and he strengthens his resolve to work patiently with his companions to bring an end to the evil that plagues the city.


M Chelish Fighter

Late morning. Pitr rolls over and blearily glances at the window. Mumbling something about it still being dark outside he rolls back over.
Perception 1d20 + 5 ⇒ (9) + 5 = 14

Then realizes it's probably later than he thinks and starts to get up and crawl into his breastplate. Downstairs he tries to sweet talk a barmaid into grabbing him a cold turkey leg or something before heading out.
Diplomacy 1d20 ⇒ 12

Failing that he spots some bum waiting to buy a bottle of whiskey with a gold piece some sucker must have given him and threatens to beat the crap out of him unless he hands it over.
Intimidate 1d20 + 7 ⇒ (20) + 7 = 27

Chuckling to himself, Pitr buys a box of chocolate covered marzipan balls with the gold on his way through the rain to the Academy.

hey, it wasn't evil. Pitr was just saving the bum's soul from the evils of alcohol. hee-hee.


The marzipan balls are just great, you wonder why they don't franchise them...

@ Kirk:

The man inspects the moonstone through a magnifying glass and whisltes through his teeth.

Good piece you 'ave 'ere. I'll pay you 50 gp. I think it's about worth twice dat much, but jewels are hard te sell, ye know.

@ Solaric:

The people return your friendly greetings and a couple of times you even hear your name whispered, the city hasn't fogotten you as it seems.

@ Pitr:

This could become your great day: At the bar you are told that your father has ordered to pack a lunch bag for you, consisting of:

A bottle of wine
2 bottles of beer
1 cigar
half a kilo of turkey filet
1 apple

@ All: As you reach the Aacedmy square you all notice the hustle and bustle around Vizyalesh Academy see post above.


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

"Look at all this brightness and light, completely unsuitable"

"Let us see what the Academy masters ask of us now; to investigate the disappearances or to flush out the sewers"


Male Human (Gundarian) Cavalier 4

Sorry for jumping the gun :)

Noticing the change that is happening at the academy, Zahur looks for some sort of foreman.


After watching the scene for a minute or two, you can make out a robust white haired man who is bellowing commands all the time.


Male Human (Gundarian) Cavalier 4

Diplomacy: 1d20 + 8 ⇒ (15) + 8 = 23

Zahur approaches the older man.

Morning good sir, it seems that a number of changes are being put into place here at the academy. Has a new headmaster been put in charge already?


Human

Finding Zahur already at the square of Vizyalesh Academy, Solaric walks up to greet the companion and join his conversation.

"Good morning Zahur! I trust you slept well last night. Do you have a chance to visit with your family?"


M Chelish Fighter

Waking from an odd dream about marzipan balls, Pitr realizes that he's probably late for the meeting and rushes to get ready. Down stairs he doesn't have time to eat, but finds his father has already ordered him a packed lunch.

Aw, thanks Dad, he thinks as he runs to reach the Academy.


The foreman, eyeballs you grumpily for a moment and replies

Nay mister, nay nu headmasta as fa' as I know, bud I have me orders anyway.


Male Human (Gundarian) Cavalier 4

Zahur greets Solaric.

Yes I had a nice evening with my parents, but I have had some discomforting news about my sisters relationship with Jarovich's nephew that we executed...

Having given solaric a greeting return, Zahur turns back towards the foreman.

Could I know who you received your orders from? It is a matter of grave importance.

Do I have to roll another diplomacy?


No, one roll is enough per encounter.

Ya, sure, de man is Boris Fanalio, I dink he's da nu hadmasta, here now, but dat's only a guess.


Male Human (Gundarian) Cavalier 4

Thanks for your time my good man. Here take a gold for your troubles and time

Zahur hands the man a gold piece.

Do I know anything about Boris? Knowledge(local) 1d20 + 9 ⇒ (8) + 9 = 17


Oooh, many danks mister!

Boris Fanalio is the long-time headmaster of Kiavelak Academy. He's the highest ranking priest of Pharasma in Karcau and one of the very few citizens who is not very fond of the opera and arts in general.


Human
Zahur wrote:
"Yes I had a nice evening with my parents, but I have had some discomforting news about my sisters relationship with Jarovich's nephew that we executed...

"Zahur, I am sorry to hear that. Do you think we have made a mistake in killing the Nephew? We will have to talk later. Come on, let's go find the others and meet with Master St. Just."


After all of you have gathered in front of Pettoria Academy underneath a group of dense trees, you see St. Just advancing, the collar of his leather frock nearly pulled up to his flap.

He nods to a side entrance of the academy and heads towards the small wooden door. Inside you are surprised to find a narrow corridor that ends in a cosy tearoom.

St. Just throws his wet clothes over a chair and explains

The room's for the guards, in winter they need a place to warm up during their shifts. Please, take a seat and tell me about your trip to Jarovicha. Oh, my manners, would anyone like a tea?


Human

”Master St. Just. I am so pleased to see you. I would love some tea! It feels strange to be back at school so soon. You will have to tell us more about the great troubles that I have heard about, but I trust you have been. Well, our journey north was a success. Nearly five days ago, we were in Jaracovia, where we brought down Count Alexandru Jaracovich. On his possession, we found a shard of the Amethyst Heptagon, which I have brought back.”

Solaric opens the sack holding the artifact and lays it down on the table.

”Handle this with care. The great evil possessed in this item will blacken even my veins upon touching it. Tell me, is this just the first of six pieces? Where can the rest be found?


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 takes her tea and simply watches the conversation unfold.


M Chelish Fighter

Pitr leans back in his chair and cracks open one of the beers his dad got him.

"Well, Jarovich turned out to be quite a bastard. He had an army of zombies he sent after us and some sort of vest that exploded and rejuvenated him when he fell. I think that should probably be destroyed. We ended up executing one of his spies and his Nephew. I think that covers it other than that little purple doodad Solaric has there."


Retcon

"Alright, that sounds fair enough. We have a deal," Kirk tells the merchant, and hands over the moonstone and accepts the money. Then he makes a quick stop by a locksmith's shop or similar merchant and picks up the nicest pair of thieves' tools he can find. I just want masterwork thieves tools, can I assume that they aren't too hard to find?

Present Time

Kirk sits silently in the meeting with St. Just, letting the others do the talking as he listens intently to their upcoming mission.


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

"Destroyed? No. That would be a loss to magical craftsmen, that item is...unique. Perhaps they would be willing to trade it for some lesser articles. Speaking of which, I have several magical artifacts here that I wish to examine more closely in the library to determine their properties."


M Chelish Fighter
'Countess' Victoria wrote:
"Destroyed? No. That would be a loss to magical craftsmen, that item is...unique.

Pitr shrugs. "Well hopefully we'll be compensated. I'm just saying it's not exactly a team player type of item. Want an apple, Countess?" he adds with a wink.


You can buy them easily Kirk.

Star-eyed St. Just looks at the Heptagon on the table, absently he says

Yeah, do whatever you want with that vest. If you need the archives and the library of the academies, just go for it, I'll give you certificates of authority.

Only slowly he turns his gaze away from the purple stone

Umm, yeah...now let's come to the more pressing issues. We have a new kind of abduction. Children from the Marble District vanish from their beds. We have no one breaking into the house, no traces, nothing. I don't think that this might be the Ragman's cult again...and we have a growing problem with ghouls from the nearby Karcau Mere...which is in fact a full-grown swamp with a poetic name...

Maybe you noticed it already: Vizyalesh is led by Fanalio for the moment. He has invited a large group of Nethys priests from Caliphas and is going to harbout them there.


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

"I have it on good authority that the abductions and the ghouls are not linked, and that the abductions are being done by a new rising evil, I will need access to the libraries, and a good librarian or historian, particularly one versed in the history of the stage... I might even need to visit the opera"

"I will also take the vest with me, to see what trade we might get for such an unusual item, perhaps I will be able to convince the musty academy researchers to trade it for some more utlitarian items made by the neophytes"


The opera keeps it's own archive where only local artists and the heads of Noriski Academy are allowed to study.


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
DM Zyren/ Heart of Light wrote:
The opera keeps it's own archive where only local artists and the heads of Noriski Academy are allowed to study.

"That will do me perfectly. I look forward to reading through their manuscripts and documents, who knows what might be contained within those walls"


M Chelish Fighter
'Countess' Victoria wrote:
"I have it on good authority that the abductions and the ghouls are not linked... I might even need to visit the opera"

"The opera, eh? just like old times. I'll bet Zahur might like to come along. Do you think you'll need any help or should I ask around the Marble District?"


Ok, I'll add masterwork thieves tools.

Kirk still sits silently through the meeting, not shrinking from eye contact but not offering any contribution to the conversation.


Human

"I am eager to see the abductions stop immediately, but this will be difficult if we have not a single lead to find those responsible. Perhaps the ghouls would be easier to begin with. I suspect they will not be hard to find. Destroying them, however, may be a different matter."


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

"Solaric, we do have a lead on the abductions, my Sisters were kind enough to tip me onto a path of investigation that might bear us some fruit. This is my purpose of visiting the libraries of the Opera. So the story goes, I am to look for a fallen star..."


St. Just arches an eyebrow as you speak of your "sisters", yet he doesn't comment. Instead he wraps up the shard and says

I will have to attend a meeting with our Nethyan visitors soon, but I think you're quite prepared for your next steps, mhh? As you already know, contact me any day- or nighttime if you need my assistance.

With a curt nod he puts his frock on and steps back out into the rain.

Your next steps?


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

"Well I know I have a long day ahead, so I will immediately consult the scholars about these magic items, and ask them about items in trade for this intriguing curiosity vest, anyone have any requests?. After that I will pursue the lead regarding the Opera, if you are the bookish sort feel free to join me, otherwise some sniffing out about the Ghouls may be in order, probably involving a few taverns to speak to night owls"

Victoria gathers up the vest and the unknown items and heads to the library.

happy to quickly move through that and get to the investigation of the Opera if you want to handwave the identification and trade process!


Yup, maybe we can retcon the whole deal as soon as the others have informed us, if they would like to get their hands on any special kind of equipment.

Victoria:

At the library the scholars identify the following:

Dagger:

The slender slivery weapon has a handle that looks like a vampire's tooth. A tiny indentation runs from its tip to the handle.

It's a dagger of bleeding + 1
------------

Boots:

The soft jackboots are made of deer leather and are ornated with intricate stitchings that resemble trees.

Boots of Elvenkind

Was there anything else?


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

Trinket and ring from Sasha I believe?


Victoria:

Ring:

A small copper band with an amorphous rose crystal placed on it.

Ring of Arcane Signets

Trinket:

A small wooden plate with the stylized image of a claw on it.

Amulet of Natural Armor + 1


Human
Victoria wrote:
After that I will pursue the lead regarding the Opera, if you are the bookish sort feel free to join me, otherwise some sniffing out about the Ghouls may be in order, probably involving a few taverns to speak to night owls"

"I readily confess that I would be of little help to you in a library, my Grace. Perhaps I could make a few inquiries around the docks district regarding the ghouls. When I am finished, I will try and find you at the Library. Where exactly is that located? Do any of you wish to join me? We may have a lot of taverns to visit, but please remember, these trips are to be strictly professional. We have an urgent task ahead of us, and we have a lot of work to do! Let us save the drinking for the day we celebrate our victory."

Solaric gives the strange vest and the other unidentified magic items over to Victoria to take. There was a dagger, the two rings and a pair of boots. I believe the rings were identified, but I'm not sure about the boots, vest and dagger.

"Do you wish to take the Amethyst Heptagon as well, my Grace? There is a strong powerful evil that emanates from it. If you take it, handle it with great care!"


Male Human (Gundarian) Cavalier 4

I'll go with you Solaric, but afterwards I would like to go to the academy and look into the records to see if I can find any more information about my sister.


M Chelish Fighter

Pitr finishes his beer while Solaric goes on. "Well Countess, I kinda figured I'd done enough reading at the Academy. If you don't think it would be much use checking out the Marble District then I guess I needed to go to the Docks anyway. and hey, if you are checking on magic perhaps you can see about getting my breastplate magicked up. I could use a little more physical protection." he pokes his finger in the holes left in his breastplate by the wyvern's fangs.

ZZ- so where exactly are the ghouls causing problems? I'm taking it that Karcau is surrounded by swamps. and was there a key to the map you are using for Karcau?


@Pitr: You have been told that the ghouls are coming from the sewers. The sewers end at the swamps northeast of the city, so this could be the general direction to go for.


Human

Solaric gets dressed up for the rain, exits, and rides Dart over to the Dock District where he enters the Shark Pool to find Gorian Damasco and some others that can fill him in on the Ghoul Situation.

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