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DM Zyren's Heart of Riddles (Inactive)

Game Master Zyrenity

Second Darkness Adventure Path - Drow, Pirates, a gambling hall, for what more can you ask?!


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No rolls - it's not MT. Everest, it's just a tree

Mercus isn't very happy about the plan and he nervously looks to the tower more than once.

It takes only about thrity minutes until a score of men with torches advance from the tower. They are led by a towering figure with broad shoulders. As they draw nearer you can identify him as the half-orc leader of the band. A wicked grin splits his face as he comes close enough to realize that Winter's companion is only just a boy.

Welcome welcome to the Mierani Forest. You must be weary and tired from your journey, eh? Why don't you visit our nice inn - At The Gallows? booming laughter erupts from his gang of thugs.


Female Half-Elf (Varisian) Fighter (Lore Warden archetype) 7

Zyren - how far back are our intrepidly unstealthy component?


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Male Human Bastard Sword Weapon Master 6 ~ Urban Barbarian/Invulnerable Rager 2

Kabal was still trying shake bree's idea of 'pretending' to be lover's with Cat out of his mind...damn girl is more likely to wrap that whip around my thick neck... when the group of thugs showed up. He huddled in the dark with sword and shield in hand waited as patiently as he could. If things turned sour...and they already look like they will... Winter and Mercus could easily be over run. He clenched his teeth and bunched muscles knowing he would have to pounce hard and fast.


I though about 30m?


Female Half-Elf (Varisian) Fighter (Lore Warden archetype) 7

100ft? - DC 0 + 10 for distance...
Perception: 1d20 + 2 ⇒ (6) + 2 = 8

Caterine doesn't notice the approach of the half-orc and his crew.


Male Human Bastard Sword Weapon Master 6 ~ Urban Barbarian/Invulnerable Rager 2

oops! Took a little liberty there. Confirmiing...

Perception: 1d20 + 11 ⇒ (16) + 11 = 27


Female Human Rogue-Knife Master/8

Using the noise of the laughter and talking to disguise any sounds she might make, Bree as quietly and using as little motion as possible prepares a bolt in her crossbow and aims it at the ringleaders chest. She holds it there for now, waiting for a sign from Winter... or for the Half-Orc to get a little too close for her comfort.


male Aasimar Clr 3/Pal4 HP:62/62, AC:21/T:12/FF:21 - Percep: +13(Dark Vis) F:+10/R:+5/W:+14 CMD: 20, Spd: 20ft, Init: +2
DM Zyren / Heart of Riddles wrote:
Welcome welcome to the Mierani Forest. You must be weary and tired from your journey, eh? Why don't you visit our nice inn - At The Gallows?

"Thank you gentlemen for your warm welcome and most generous offer of hospitality, it is most decent of you to trouble yourself to come out this evening and check up on the wellbeing of travellers passing by, and even more of a boon to offer them the further hospitality of dharing your roof. We have already set up camp here and are fairly used to the rigours of the road, so to take up your offer would only be a selfish act of enjoying creature comforts and putting you out, even though you have the niceness to offer. On the other hand, I would happily have you join me at the fire here, and share what rations we have, perhaps you have news of the forests and the surrounds... I don't have rations for all of you I am sorry, I hadn't expected to entertain guests, however perhaps I could be joined by the lord of the manor?"

Winter looks the big old half orc in the eye...

"Perhaps you could tell me some tales, and perhaps I could tell you some eh?" Winter holds aloft his copy of The Parables of Erastil conspiratorially, "Do you know much about Erastil? He often roams the roads as a weary old man, as a traveller, and he occasionally shares stories with those he meets by the campfire... those who are kind he blesses, those with callous hearts he leaves to their own way"

"So... will you share my campfire and partake of the sustenance of both body and soul I offer?"


At the mentioning of Erastil the group of ruffians falls silent at once.

The half-orc's expression becomes one of gravest seriousness Are you a priest of Ol' Deadeye? he asks and more than one of his men slowly grips the hilt of his sword.

Andoran

Male Elf Witch/8

Crossbow at the ready, Sable hides in a nearby tree,

Stealth 1d20 + 2 ⇒ (19) + 2 = 21

and watches Winter at the clearing.

Perception 1d20 + 12 ⇒ (20) + 12 = 32


Male Half-Elf (Taldan) Bard (Archivist) 7 Drow Stats 51/51 hp;AC 19/T 14/FF 16; F +2/R +8/W +3; Int/Wis Skills -1

Sebastian lays a hand on Kabal's shoulder and tries to stretch up and whisper in his ear. Sultry images of Cat fade from his mind, instead a distant heroic score seems to play and moving images of heroes storming ramparts play across the back of his mind.

Cast Heroism +2 morale bonus for 50 min to ATT, Saves, and Skills. Wont overlap with Sebastian's Inspire ability except for the AC bonus


male Aasimar Clr 3/Pal4 HP:62/62, AC:21/T:12/FF:21 - Percep: +13(Dark Vis) F:+10/R:+5/W:+14 CMD: 20, Spd: 20ft, Init: +2
DM Zyren / Heart of Riddles wrote:
The half-orc's expression becomes one of gravest seriousness Are you a priest of Ol' Deadeye? he asks and more than one of his men slowly grips the hilt of his sword.

"Yes, yes I am. You know of Him then? His wisdom gives me courage and comfort, the blood of angels flowing in my veins gives me strength, and the heavens from which I descended gift me with their cold fury"

Winter still stands relaxed enough, but slowly moves towards his fire as though to catch a bit more warmth.

"So will you be joining me for a chat and some hospitality? It says right here in the good book 'Few things exalt your faith more than feeding the hungry with your own honest sweat' so perhaps sharing a meal blesses us both?"


A wave of relief rungs through the bandits and the half-orc smiles genuinely

Then father, please part your wisdom with us, but not at this fire but in my throne room. You have to know that my men and I are also sworn to the ways of Old Deadeye.


male Aasimar Clr 3/Pal4 HP:62/62, AC:21/T:12/FF:21 - Percep: +13(Dark Vis) F:+10/R:+5/W:+14 CMD: 20, Spd: 20ft, Init: +2

"Ahhh that is delightful, perhaps then you can tell me the opening line of The Parables of Erastil that I may then bless you all?"


The orc needs no time to answer your question

Gold and gems make a man weak; hard work in a field shows strength of body and character, therefore you, the followers of the Stag God, must never hunt for riches, but thrive in the simplicity of what nature offers.


male Aasimar Clr 3/Pal4 HP:62/62, AC:21/T:12/FF:21 - Percep: +13(Dark Vis) F:+10/R:+5/W:+14 CMD: 20, Spd: 20ft, Init: +2

"A good answer, and here then, may we discuss His wisdom. Let me speak plainly so as not to either offend not mislead. I was told this place was filled with bandits and cut-throats. I was warned that these roads were unsafe for travellers. I believe it was your band I was being warned about, yet how can that be true when you are followers of His wisdom? I am curious, brothers, why you could have such a reputation and have it undeservedly so?"


The orc and most of his men looks down...ashamed

Only last year we began to change our ways...before that, we were the bandits you heard of...but now his face lightens up and he points at the tower we have begun to lay out fields and started cultivating them!


male Aasimar Clr 3/Pal4 HP:62/62, AC:21/T:12/FF:21 - Percep: +13(Dark Vis) F:+10/R:+5/W:+14 CMD: 20, Spd: 20ft, Init: +2

"Admirable, it is good that you are able to be so honest. It is a long road, the road to Salvation, but many are choosing to see the light and let themselves be drawn into its comfort. To sleep well at night knowing they have a bond of family, whether blood family or spiritual, and to share the wealth and abundance of the land. I am Winter, I do His work, and even as we speak there are others joining the faithful from Riddleport, former Pirates seeking a new way. Please, I have kept you from your hearthfires too long, return to your house and I shall join you in the morning where we can walk your fields and talk about how your reputation may be mended like a good fence. I will spend the evening out here, communing with Him and the land in prayer"


Female Half-Elf (Varisian) Fighter (Lore Warden archetype) 7

Cat waits in silence, awaiting sign from her more eagle eyed companion as to whether she need approach in anger or not...


The orc nods

Yes father, if you need anything, just come over to the tower, we happily part with all our belongings.

The orc also nods to Mercus and then he and his men return to the tower ruin.


Female Human Rogue-Knife Master/8

Bree doesn't lower her crossbow until the men are far out of sight, but even then she waits for Winter's signal before leaving the tree.

Was she close enough to hear the conversation?


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not entirely, maybe she got some words of it.


Male Half-Elf (Taldan) Bard (Archivist) 7 Drow Stats 51/51 hp;AC 19/T 14/FF 16; F +2/R +8/W +3; Int/Wis Skills -1

Sebastian looks on incredulously as the tense meeting seems to break up with very subservient gestures from the Orcs. "Did a......did Winter just convert all the Bandits? Where are they going? I swear, he could convince a rust monster to lay off the iron."


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Male Human Bastard Sword Weapon Master 6 ~ Urban Barbarian/Invulnerable Rager 2

Kabal almost charged the whole group with those blasted trumpets blaring in his thick skull...I feel like an army of one... He had no doubts that he could lay waste to whole damn lot of them single handedly and for a second he wished a more worthy opponent would show itself...like a bloody dragon...Id yank its head down by its damn horn and punch the bastard right in the eye just for looking at me...

He inhaled and slowly let the deep breath out to calm himself. He didnt even try to hide his disappointment when the bandits turned tail and walked away.

Hah! Good one Sebastian. Our priest has quite a way with words...what the hell did you to me anyways? I'm ready to take on whatever rears its ugly face right now...it's exhilirating.


male Aasimar Clr 3/Pal4 HP:62/62, AC:21/T:12/FF:21 - Percep: +13(Dark Vis) F:+10/R:+5/W:+14 CMD: 20, Spd: 20ft, Init: +2

"If they truly wished to do harm then they would have tried their luck. Strange that they'd just convert though, it usually takes some effort - I'd know. Perhaps in the morning we can make some sense of it, find out what happened to cause them all to gain faith... perhaps there is something I hadn't thought of which could aid me in spreading peace in Riddleport."

Winter looks about... "Here, let me assist the rest of you setting up your bedding."


Female Human Rogue-Knife Master/8

"I don't know what they said to you, but I do know that when they first showed up they were not looking at you as men of any decent god would. I still don't trust them. I think that we should wait for them to all be asleep and end them quickly. They looked at Mercus like he was a mouse caught in a cat's paw. I don't like it."


male Aasimar Clr 3/Pal4 HP:62/62, AC:21/T:12/FF:21 - Percep: +13(Dark Vis) F:+10/R:+5/W:+14 CMD: 20, Spd: 20ft, Init: +2

"Perhaps you are right. I would suggest a different course of action. Lets leave the camp as it is, with just some bushes under the bedding, set to resemble two sleeping men... as the embers die down it will simply look as though we comfortably went to sleep for the night. We can camp just inside the treeline proper just 30 yards or so along...and have a concealed hiding point from which we can watch the real camp, and the fake one. Their intentions will be very plain soon enough if you are right, but if our false camp remains unmolested then we might be over reacting. Does that sit will with the rest of you? I'm an earnest and ever optimistic man I know, but I'm not silly... even in the mountains we had human vipers"


Female Human Rogue-Knife Master/8

Bree nods her head but mumbles under her breath "I do not overreact"

Andoran

Male Elf Witch/8

Floating down from his perch, "I can string my hammock from a tree here or deeper in the line to watch. If they hunt on the winds of Erastil, we may have found unlikely allies, but if they aim to sink their talons in as we sleep with our heads 'neath our wings they'll be in for a surprise." More to himself than the others, "Blackfeather keep my eyes sharp this evening." Sable strokes Korax under his beak and sets about to setting up the camps.


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Male Human Bastard Sword Weapon Master 6 ~ Urban Barbarian/Invulnerable Rager 2

Bah! Let them come back. I'm done with the hiding in the bushes from the merry men of the forest. If they meant any harm they would've taken down the two without thinking twice.

Kabal was thankful that he had first watch. He couldnt sleep right now even if he wanted to. He had half a mind to go on and march all the way to wherever those dark hearted drow were waiting... and slice the whole damn evil bunch of them into little bloody chunks and then stomp on those chunks til they were a soupy mush...pretty sure Sebastian would paint me as some sort of noble hero in one of his stories after that...


Female Half-Elf (Varisian) Fighter (Lore Warden archetype) 7

"Any reason why we don't just take them up on the invitation? Either they try and kill us, and we disappoint them... or they're bonafide and you get to spend a night talking of the Stag Lord. Either way we'd hopefully get to sleep at least under cover... looks like it might rain tonight..."


Male Half-Elf (Taldan) Bard (Archivist) 7 Drow Stats 51/51 hp;AC 19/T 14/FF 16; F +2/R +8/W +3; Int/Wis Skills -1

Sebastian gives a little chuckle. "Kabal, I just gave you a dose of confidence with a pinch of magical protections. Maybe I went a little heavy with it. It will wear off...unfortunately. Probably about an hour."


Well, stay outside or follow the ex-bandits?

Mercus looks at Kabal and grins

Hah, at last Kabal has found his real self, quite a shame that it will only last so shortly - if we don't trust the orcish farmer and his merry band of rural workers, we should attack them now, as long as Kabal is pumped with magic adrenaline.


Male Human Bastard Sword Weapon Master 6 ~ Urban Barbarian/Invulnerable Rager 2

Yah, well that kind of edge is helpful to say the least. Now if Eristil's flock of ruffians had any brains they wouldve left scouts and would know by now of our subterfuge. I'll be ready if they change their minds about us no matter when it is.


male Aasimar Clr 3/Pal4 HP:62/62, AC:21/T:12/FF:21 - Percep: +13(Dark Vis) F:+10/R:+5/W:+14 CMD: 20, Spd: 20ft, Init: +2

"The ruffians are firmly of the opinion they just spoke to a Paladin and Priest of Erastil, and his young and earnest squire. They will mistakenly think that they have the upper hand and expect no guile from me, and won't expect me to trick them with a test of faith, they wont have left sentries because who wouldn't trust a Paladin to be a Paladin?. We only have it on one mans word that these are bandits and ne'er-do-wells, and for all we know he might have been spreading foul rumours. They claim to have changed their ways and become agents of good. Now whilst their leader was able to tell me of the works of Erastil, I must ask myself the question, was he once a man who was evil and found his way or was he a decent man who lost it?"

"Allow me my small test of faith, for if those men are truly fallen then it wont take much time before they return to ambush, in which case we will be upon them moments after, and sleeping in their now conquered fort moments after - or they are decent folk and we awake in the morning with a clear conscience knowing we haven't killed innocent men unfairly judged"


Female Human Rogue-Knife Master/8

"Whatever you say, Winter, but those were not innocent men. They looked at the two of you the exact same way I've seen a hundred other cutthroats look at a man they thought was easy prey. I don't know what they're playing at here, and maybe they're not as bad as they use to be, but they are definitely not good people."


male Aasimar Clr 3/Pal4 HP:62/62, AC:21/T:12/FF:21 - Percep: +13(Dark Vis) F:+10/R:+5/W:+14 CMD: 20, Spd: 20ft, Init: +2

"I agree there is more than meets the eye, I am just not yet sure which way this wind is blowing... we will know soon enough, be ready to counter ambush these fellows. If they are out doing evil then I wish to catch them red-handed in the act before meting out justice. I suppose we shouldn't get too comfortable then."

Intent - As above, the fire will be dimmed down to just some warm coals, with the beds made up to LOOK as though people are under their covers and with no sentry posted. We will be parked further along in the treeline in a concealed position from which the fake camp can be observed. If these guys are bad, it wont take long for them to come and start stabbing at the sleeping shapes... at which point they get a BIG SURPRISE


Your clever plan seems to work out. After you have waited an hour in great anticipation, half a score of bandits return. One seems to carry a basket with him, but you can't make out any details. They surround your small fake-camp but prefer to stay about 50m away from it.


male Aasimar Clr 3/Pal4 HP:62/62, AC:21/T:12/FF:21 - Percep: +13(Dark Vis) F:+10/R:+5/W:+14 CMD: 20, Spd: 20ft, Init: +2

...watching, waiting.

Andoran

Male Elf Witch/8

Sable waits and watches to see if the basket holds hot pitch or a warm meal...


Female Half-Elf (Varisian) Fighter (Lore Warden archetype) 7

Caterine grumbles about the indignity of it all, but goes along with Kabal to wait out in the damp and cold.


An hour later nothing has happened, the men still stand silently in the darkness.


Male Human Bastard Sword Weapon Master 6 ~ Urban Barbarian/Invulnerable Rager 2

Theres something wrong with these louts. I say we check it out.


male Aasimar Clr 3/Pal4 HP:62/62, AC:21/T:12/FF:21 - Percep: +13(Dark Vis) F:+10/R:+5/W:+14 CMD: 20, Spd: 20ft, Init: +2

"Sable, perhaps your wise bird could fly up ahead and look at what is going on, perhaps something nasty was in the basket? Or perhaps they are the good guys waiting for the bad guys to come.. perhaps they are actually a camp divided...?"


Female Half-Elf (Varisian) Fighter (Lore Warden archetype) 7

"Well if something don't happen soon I've a mind to get bored enough to push proceedings. If they are a bad lot, I'd hardly think they'd let an unaccompanied lass go past unhindered."


Male Human Bastard Sword Weapon Master 6 ~ Urban Barbarian/Invulnerable Rager 2

Im about tired of the games already.

Kabal starts walking towards the man with the basket. The Brevian stops about thirty feet away and bellows.

Hey bub! Whats your purpose here?!

Andoran

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Male Elf Witch/8

Sable starts to send Korax to scout, then calls his companion back as the Kabalanche starts.


The man lets the basket fall and draws his sword in one fluid move. A trained and skilled swordsman...

Feck, who are you and where is Father Winter?

Alarmed by your exchange of words, the other men also draw their wepons and close in on Kabal.


Male Human Bastard Sword Weapon Master 6 ~ Urban Barbarian/Invulnerable Rager 2

Facing ten men had no effect on Kabal's bravado.

Damn, youre jumpy son. Im Kabal Breven and 'Father' Winter is right over there all safe and sound. Now, whats your damn purpose out here?

Sense Motive: 1d20 + 10 ⇒ (9) + 10 = 19


The men hesitate and relax slowly

We thought Father Winter was only travelling with his squire...we're here to make sure that he can rest without being attacked by wild animals or worse. We're only here for his protection.

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