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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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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

Is that finger missing a phalanx?

Yes, it does

"I can do some dirty work on the streets, asking around about our opera singer and Ambassador. Somebody's bound to know something. Or else I can head over to the Ambassador's offices, maybe dig something up there. If it's not too heavily guarded, I might even be able to get inside before anyone with something to hide gets a chance to hide it."

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

"Seems like a good use of your skills; I'll be heading to the Opera, lets meet again in two hours"

Assume a meeting point well known to everyone

A logical meeting point for the whole group would be the square in front of the academy buildings.

Kirk heads for the door of the inn, beckoning anyone with him who would like to accompany him first to the streets and then perhaps the Ambassador's office. (Where is that, by the way? I can roll Knowledge local, but I assume the guards would just tell us if we don't already know.)

"First off, we'll ask around on the streets--get a picture of things. Somebody somewhere saw something, knows something, or did something."

Knowledge (local) 1d20 + 6 ⇒ (17) + 6 = 23, figuring out a good bar/locale to question civilians about something like this. If this won't work, I will go to the Stranger's District and search around in the alleys for groups of miscreants or the like.

While most of the group didn't post, you can also decide later that you'd accompanied Kirk or Victoria


As you thought: The guards also assume that the ambassador's "shelter" is in the strangers district. Since the captain is not sure about the exact whereabouts, he proposes to you to go to the Eastbridge Guard Station and ask there.
The bridge at the right bottom of no. 12 on the map

If they can't help you there, you should simply wait for a maximum of an hour and he will send a messenger to you with the required information.


The neatly paved streets of the opera district are covered with hoarfrost and a sharp wind howls around the corners. You wrap your cloak tight around you and stride to the opera house - a dark shape in front of an even darker night sky which is rife with fast moving clouds.

The square in front of the at least 6-storey high opera building is deserted, but remnants of the festivities are everywhere: empty bottles, colourful ribbons and half eaten snacks. The dark building looms over you and you feel somewhat petty compared to the structure. Besides a copper double door you see no visible entrance, though you know there must be a direct way to the cloak rooms.

Okay, away I go, then. Feel free to come along, whomever.

Kirk leads the way into the night with a grunt of farewell to the others, heading toward the Eastbridge Guard Station and then the Stranger's District.

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

After a short wait while the others straggle along behind her, Victoria composes herself, pulls herself erect and proud and walks regally to the copper doors to seek entrance.


Familiar with the shadows you even feel somewhat releived to leave the tavern and prowl through the streets on your own. On your way to the strangers district you only encounter two drunken fellows strolling home for one of the various festivities.

The Eastbridge Guard Station consists of a small guard house and a mechanical barrier that can be lowered to deny access to the bridge.
In front of the guard house one of Karcau's regular guards waits vigilantly eyeing the bridge.


A knock on the large copper doors is only responded by a long and lonely howl of the wind...Either no one is inside or no one is near enough to hear you knocking.

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

Looking for an alternate entrance, Detecting Magic to see if there might be an illusion covering any of the areas. If I can see an small ventilation areas etc, maybe a snake might need to go snoop!

After rounding the building you find:

a) An ironworks ornamented wooden backdoor.
b) Lots of tiny holes where Naga could slip in.

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

a) An ironworks ornamented wooden backdoor - try it...


b) Naga is slipping in a tiny hole to find a key.

That said, lets wait to see what the others might bring to the table :)

Well, if it's only talking...

Kirk approaches the guard on the bridge and accosts him sternly but not quite in an unfriendly manner, "Guard, where would one find the housing of ambassadors to the city? I am on duty, performing an investigation for the Nightscarves, and I would strongly suggest you aid me with this small bit of information, lest I be forced to return to my superiors empty-handed with only you as my reason why. I doubt they'd be very understanding."

Intimidate 1d20 + 7 ⇒ (20) + 7 = 27

The guards expression shifts from open rejection to a rather timid and worried look.
He hesitates only a blink, then rushes into the guard house and returns with a well kept log.
Already paging through it, he asks you:

Sir, which ambassador's residence is of interest for the Nightscarves, sir?

"Mr. Alistrada, if you please. From Caliphas."

Kirk muses at the guard with his ledger, thinking to himself about the night's developments. He then inquires a little bit further, "Have you seen the good Ambassador tonight during your shift? It is imperative that I discuss a few matters with him."

The guard look nervously up to you then back to his ledger.

Sure sir, Alistrada from Caliphas....ah yes, here we have him. Northstar Street 7. A large manor directly at the eastern city wall. You can't miss it. And no sir, I didn't see him leave, just began my duty an hour ago.

"Thank you, sir, I'll be sure to mention your cooperation in my report."

Kirk heads briskly to the manor to size up the place. He also keeps his eye out for any passerbys or other people on the streets/in the alleys in and around the area.

Perception 1d20 + 5 ⇒ (12) + 5 = 17

The streets are empty...empty in a way that worries you. It reminds you of the moment before a hunter's arrow leaves the bowstring, there is danger around you, though you cannot grasp it in any way.

Hiding behind a group of small bushes opposite the manor you get a clear view of the building.
The structure is errected in the typical Caliphasian style: lots of archs and bold shapes.

There is an about 1.8m high wall with metal pikes upon it, around the building and an iron gate barring every possible intruder from an easy entrance. The building lies in complete darkness and nothing can be heard, nevertheless you have the feeling that something is watching you from the house.

Should I keep going, or wait for someone else to show up first? I realize I'm probably the best person for sneaking in there anyway, but it might just be my curiosity that is driving me to do it. If someone were here, they could probably convince me it's a bad idea... but I'm all alone. I also feel a little bad for directing this part of the story so far without any of the others' input.

same feelings's really weird how this has developed. Victoria is certainly still with us, but the rest. But as I said in the OOC thread, maybe we have two replacements.

I would be willing to join. I am very flexible and could create any character from the core classes as needed, perhaps another graduate from the academy. Do you have preferences? Sorcerer?, Paladin? Ranger? Monk?

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

Personally I'm always a fan of 'what you like is King' :)
Our short term MIA players are an Alchy and a Cleric, but presume they will be back shortly.

What we really lack is a dedicated Melee, so if I was going to be making a suggestion I would think a Pally or a Ranger would be a nice pick.

Bearing in mind you would (at this point) be jumping in with a half-orc and a tiefling, try be an open minded Pally if you go that route :)

Hey, good to see you here, maybe we can chit chat in the OOC thread?

Male Human (Gundarian) Cavalier 4

You heard the sound of shoed hooves coming from behind you. Hail Kirk, are you skulking in the night as you usually did back at the academy? Some of us did notice you sneaking off in the night you know.

Zahur unmounts his horse walks up to the half-orc looking at him at eye-level.

Sorry it took me so long to get hear, but I went to my parents house to celebrate my graduation, by the time that the Nightscarfs camt to get me and the headmasters informed me of the situation, you were already gone from the inn. Our victim's residence I presume?

M Chelish Fighter

What a night! I'm still feeling a bit inebriated from the graduation celebration. Of course, being pulled out to face Master St. Just mid-celebration does a lot to sober one up. I'm really not sure what is going on, but I'm supposed to meet another recent graduate at the Opera House. Hmmm, I made it, but the place looks pretty empty to me...

not sure if you are hiding out or what, but you see a lone figure approach the opera house. You don't think he is with the town watch even though he is armed as such, for two reasons: one, he is alone and two, you're pretty sure purple scarves aren't watch standard issue.

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

"Ahhh a face at last, do you work here my fine Sir? I seek entry to the Opera at once, perhaps you can arrange it"

Zyren, I would like to get my character ready tonight. With your permission I would like to play a a half elven paladin named Solaric. My mother was human and my father was drow. She was enslaved in the underdark and escaped with me to the surface. I eventually worked my way to the academy. I am afraid I don't know enough background about the school itself. I am still working on the details. For my ability scores may I use a point system? If so, how many? I should be ready very soon. Thanks again! Yours, Solaric. (Solaruffikus)

M Chelish Fighter

Whoa, are you out here by yourself, lady? You are with the Academy, right? What's going on?
Pitr is a bit flushed and keeps staring at the Countess' horns.

Edit: I don't want to jump to conclusions.

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

"Yes I appear to have rather misplaced my escort, very careless. Indeed I am with the academy, investigating some...goings on. At least you have the manners to stare at my horns, other men are not so gallant.
Anyhow I seek entrance to the Opera, what brings you past?

M Chelish Fighter

Pitr blinks a few times and refocuses on the Countess' face. As he leans in a little the odor of rumboozle becomes a bit sharper, but he shakes his head to clear it and whispers.
Master St. Just sent me out as well. I thought there were others, where is the rest of the group? Hmmm, perhaps following another lead and you want to check out the starlett's changing room, I'd guess. I'm with you, but I think we'd better round everyone up first. I'm getting a bad feeling about this...

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

"We have little time, and we are already here... but if you are't game..."

"Shadows are often more trustworthy than people, you know. Anyway, yes, this is the victim's manor. I was just contemplating sneaking inside and taking a look, but was hesitant to do so without nearby backup or a lookout of some kind." Kirk gazes toward the manor and shakes his head. "You know, it's funny. When I first got here, I had the feeling there was something inside, watching me. There's a small part of me that doesn't want to go inside at all."


There is some background in the OOC thread to be found.
But what you said about your family and heritage is enough for me on that matter, some character traits in your background would be interesting for me.
Besides that, you should just jump into action like Pitr and Zahur did and accompany any of the two mini groups.

Male Human (Gundarian) Cavalier 4

"Well as for me sneaking in with you, I am as silent as an elephant walking on broken glass, but I can certainly act as your look-out". Points away from the manor.
"Or we could go an meet with our other fellow graduates and investigate with them. "
Turns back towards the manor, and lets a slight chuckle escape his lips.
"To be honest, I've been waiting all my life for a good thrill, so shall we?"

M Chelish Fighter
'Countess' Victoria wrote:

... but if you are't game..."

Pitr stiffens at the perceived taunt. You don't think I have the balls, lady?! Come on. I think there's a service entrance in backWith that said Pitr stomps off muttering something about devil women and making disparaging remarks about 'Egghead Academy'.

Once he reaches the backdoor, he'll wait for the Countess, lower his shoulder and try to smash in the door-

Strength check 1d20 + 4 ⇒ (20) + 4 = 24

I'm eager to see if that behaviour really leaves an impression :-)...I mean, at least the door is quite IMpressed

With a creak a crack appears undernetah the ironwork, another shoulder smash later the door bursts from one hinge and the way is open. Your awe-inspiring performance seems not to have caused further troubles, since the corridor behind the door is empty, dark and quiet. The first few yards of the wooden hallway which are illuminated by a nearby street lamp show signs of frequent use and the air smells like a mixture of perfume, sweat and old clothes.

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


"Excellent work, you see to have overcome your initial shyness my good man, shall we go take a look inside now? I wonder what secrets the starlet may have been keeping"

Victoria falls in step behind Pitr.

M Chelish Fighter

Pitr seems a little stunned that went so well.

critted that damn door : )

Then he shrugs at the Countess, rolls and lights a cigarillo with a tindertwig, grabs his halberd and proceeds inside with a toss of his scarf. Once inside he will look for a lamp or candle.

do you have darkvision CV?

She has 60ft Darkvision

Once you enter the hallway and your eyes get accustomed to the visibility condidions, you notice an oil lamp hanging next to the now broken door.
After lighting the lamp you can spot 4 doors (1 left, two right, 1 straight ahead) on the hallway.

The doors on the right and left bear copper plates with names on them:

Left: Tatyana Dvorcza
Right 1: Madeleine Anishva
Right 2: Alon Weatherby

Perception DC 15:

Between Tatyana's door and the door case is a jammed hair.

"Well, alright then. Shout good and loud if something happens, or try and get my attention more subtly if necessary."

With that, Kirk attempts to gain entry to the manor. Just realized I don't have any thieves tools. Oops, haha.

Climb 1d20 + 1 ⇒ (13) + 1 = 14
Stealth 1d20 + 7 ⇒ (13) + 7 = 20
Perception 1d20 + 5 ⇒ (5) + 5 = 10

M Chelish Fighter

Perception 1d20 - 1 ⇒ (1) - 1 = 0

Going for the left door. You know lady, when I was a kid with my parents forcing me to come to these phoney shows, I never thought I'd actually end up bashing a door down to get back in here. Just shows you never know where you'll end up, eh? My name's Pitr, by the way.

@Pitr, wating for Victorias Perception roll before going on

@ Kirk:

Climbing over the wall is quite easy for an experienced climber like you. Only seconds after your first grip you are already inside the walls in a small park that surrounds the manor.
Still everything is quiet and yet you strangely feel more prey than predator. Movements trained a thousand times take you to the manor, just below a window.
Except some hoarfrost on the windowsill there's nothing remarkable about it.

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

"Sir Pitr, Victoria, or 'Countess' as you please... so delighted we have met. Indeed we end up in the most odd places on lifes journey, but isn't it all rather exciting?"


Perception checks:
Victoria = 1d20 + 6 ⇒ (15) + 6 = 21
Naga = 1d20 + 9 ⇒ (15) + 9 = 24 Plus Scent

To Kirk in a loud whisper: "Hey Orc Man! Haven't I seen you sneaking about outside of the Noriski alchemist labs before? You look like the one that blew the windows out of the West Side Lab last year. You look out of place here outside the ambassador's manor. If you are looking for more labs to sneak into, I think you've got the wrong place, but if you are here on a particular charge given by a particular group of academy masters, perhaps you would consider joining forces with me. Solaric at your service." Solaric steps from behind a tree and takes a low deep bow.

@ Pitr + Victoria

As you open the door to Tatyana's cloak room you hear the clicking of boots from the paved square at the backdoor of the opera house.

Get fast into the cloak room or welcome the newcomers?


Obviously the hair was jammed between door and case to mark that intruders visited the cloak room.

I think we should retcon Solaric's coming to the manor before Kirk jumped over the wall, ok?

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

"let us move into the shadows and observe whocomes our way...

M Chelish Fighter
'Countess' Victoria wrote:
"let us move into the shadows and observe whocomes our way...

Pitr nods, extinguishes the lamp, and pinches out his cigar.

Stealth check if needed: 1d20 + 2 - 3 ⇒ (10) + 2 - 3 = 9

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

Oops, Stealth - 1d20 + 3 ⇒ (11) + 3 = 14

It takes only a half dozen heartbeats until two regular city guards, assumably on their normal tour, peak into the "hole" Pitr left.

Mmmh, vandalism again, eh? says one of the guards more to himself than to his partner.

Actors ye know, work hard, party' what about us? I mean, do we not work hard? Don't we deserve to party, too? It's all about celebrities, they can do whatever they want an' people even clap when they break a door which costs my pay for half a year... adds number two.

Did ye hear of that Andoran land? Someday we should leave this frosty place and go's good 'ere, everyone's equal ye know.

Equal? How come? I mean equal by birth? Then there was no working class - that ain't good, without a working class who does all the work?

Maybe Mages? I dunno...ok we should stay 'ere, but than stop talking about what we deserve and so on...

The guards leave still still loudly debating...

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