Now that her passion has cooled, Kalina is hesitant again.
Hello, I-- I'm Kalina. I think Professor Lorrimor probably saved my life a few years ago. I know for certain that he saved my soul. He brought me to Pharasma. He... he saw good in me.
Unable to face the crowd any longer she turns towards the casket.
Professor, if there *is* anything good in me, it's only because you saw it, because you believed in me. I hope I can make you proud. I know Pharasma will give you a place of honor, but I... I will miss you.
Diplomacy: 1d20 + 8 ⇒ (10) + 8 = 18
|Torald Othric of Griffonstone|
Torald steps to the grave.
I barely knew the professor. It was just by chance that we once met. I had at that time the possibility to meet a person so open minded and helpful as few other I have met in my live. It is to bemoan that he never realized his dream to become dean. He would have deseved it.
Diplomacy 1d20 + 6 ⇒ (18) + 6 = 24
Cerana looks on as everyone says a few words. She is hesitant to say her story in truth but decides to at least recite a small part of it. She sighs and throws in her tale.
"Sorry, if I'm not very good with words. I am used to talking about research and not from my heart. I am Cerana, once a brief colleague to Professor Lorrimor. He helped me discover a part of my past that I thought lost through his knowledge and intuition. I will never forget the fleeting time we spent together as brethren. The academic world has lost one of his greats, and he shall be surely missed. Quel Kaima Mellon"
She bows her head and waits for the others.
Diplomacy: 1d20 - 1 ⇒ (19) - 1 = 18
|Dr. Benedict Darcy|
Benedict clears his throat a little uncomfortably and steps forward, "Several years ago I met the Professor at a conference where he was the keynote speaker. For some reason he took interest in a young medical student and mentored me through the last several years of my studies. His letters contained so much wise advice, that I shall forever be in his debt. His recommendation was instrumental in obtaining my position as physician to House Harstov. There was no gain or payment for Professor Lorrimor to help me, he did it merely for the pleasure of seeing another succeed professionally. He was a great scholar and a great man, and I shall miss him tremendously."
DIPLOMACY CHECK: 1d20 + 5 ⇒ (10) + 5 = 15
After the burden of the heavy casket has been lifted, and the deceased professor interred into the open grave, Tahlaera steps back, remaining quiet. Best to remain quiet, rather than offend with my ignorance of these strange customs, she thinks.
Once every one who wanted to has said his words the old cleric speaks a last blessing for the dead and then signs the gravediggers to fill the grave.
For a few more moments everyone stands a solemn vigil, then the well-fed of the more elegantly clad men steps towards the Professors daughter "I'm sorry Kendra that I have to slightly rush you, but my schedule is quite full and old Gibs just made it even more cramped. I'm thus sadly forced to ask you that we now continue to reading his last will. I presume those strangers are to ones he required to attend?"
Kendra, by now once again composed, but slightly somber just nodded.
"Ok, I'll go get it and come to your house 15 minutes from now."
With that he scurries off and the other locals take their leave too.
Kendra then turns to you: [/b]"I still can't quite believe he is truly gone but well, life has to go on. Let us get back to my house, I don't want that Mister Hearthmount has to wait."[/b]
She then leads the lot of you back to her home, an modest house in the southern part of Ravengro. While not really small, it appears quite cramped since every room seems to the filled with crowded bookshelf. She leads you into a room that seems to be the dinning room, with a big table.
You had not even really chance to make yourself comfortable when the Councilman arrives, a sealed scroll case under his arm.
"Here it is, the last will and testament of Professor Pertros Lorrimor. As you all can see his seal is still intact. Now I take Kendras word that you are the people the Professor wanted to be attending when it is read, excluding those who died since it was sealed or who were impossible to find. " He then breaks the seal, takes out the scroll and starts reading. As he opens the scroll case an iron key quite noisily falls out, but he just ignores it for now.
"I, Petros Lorrimor, being sound of mind, do hereby commit to this parchment my last will and testament. Let it be known that, with the exception of specific details below, I leave my home and personal belongings entire to my daughter Kendra. Use them or sell them as you see fit, my child.
Yet beyond the bequeathing of my personal effects, this document must serve other needs. I have arranged for the reading of this document to be delayed until all principals can be in attendance, as long as that can be accomplished with reasonal expenses. This is required for I have more than mere inheritance to apportion. I have two final favors to ask.
To my old friends, I hate to impose upon you all, but there are few others who are capable of appreciating the true significance of what it is I have to ask. As some of you know, I have devoted many of my studies to all manner of evil, that I might know the enemy and inform those better positioned to stand against it. For knowledge of one's enemy is the surest path to victory over its plans.
And so, over the course of my lifetime, I have seen fit to acquire a significant collection of valuable but dangerous tomes, any one of which in the wrong circumstances could led to an awkward legal situation. While the majority of these tomes remain safe under lock and key at the Lepistadt University, I fear that a few I have borrowed to remain in a trunk in my Ravengro home. While invaluable for my work in life, in death, I would prefer not to burden my daughter with the darker side of my profession, or worse still, the danger ofer possesing these tomes herself. As such, I am entrusting my chest of tomes to you, posthumously. I ask that you please deliver the collection to my colleagues at the University in Lepistadt, who will put them to good use for the betterment of the cause.
Yet before you leave for Lepistadt, there is the matter of another favor - please delay your journey one month and spend that period of time here in Ravengro to ensure that my daughter is safe and sound. She has no one to count on now that I am gone, and if you would aid her in setting things in order for whatever she desires over the course of this month, you would have my eternal gratitude. From my savings, I have also willed to each of you a sum of one hundred platinum coins. For safekeeping, I have left these funds with Embreth Daramid, one of my trusted friends in Lepidstadt - she has been instructed to issue this payment upon safe delivery of the borrowed tomes no sooner than one month after the date of reading this will.
I, Petros Lorrimor, hereby sign this will in Ravengro on this first day of Calistril, in the year 4717."
He takes down the scroll "That is it, I presume the key is for the mentioned trunk."
Before the will is read:
Never having been particularly talented in the art of speech, Jolienne waits stoically while the others speak. No words I can speak would do justice to the debt I owe you, Professor, for if it had not been for you I would never have been able to truly overcome my fears and guilt, she thinks to herself.
Jolienne nods to herself and approaches Kendra. "I would be honored to do this small thing for your father. Where might I find suitable lodgings, so that I may serve you this next month?"
Kalina is stunned into silence for many minutes, as they all seem to be. Finally she gets up the courage to approach Kendra.
The few times we've met, you have always been so gracious to me. I am happy to do anything if it could make this time a little easier for you. But.. but I don't need money for it. This money should be yours. I am happy to help in whatever way I can.
Cerana seems cautious of this, she puts her chin in her hands. Her eyes darting from person to person wondering why exactly the professor needed such an eclectic mix of people to do his task.
This is suspicious, though I am not going to reject a request from him. Though I do wonder... those claims, what are those books?
She turns to Kendra still looking quite pensive.
I will not deny your father his last wishes, however ...
She turns to the rest of the group.
I think its best that we get to know one another before we leave, might be the effect of living in the capital to long but I want to know who am I working with.
My name is Cerana Whisperwood, it is a pleasure to meet you all. I am a scholar from Caliphas. Pleasure to make your acquaintances.
Lyla rolls her eyes when the councilman reads the tasks assigned to the group by the professor. Jeez, all this for a pile of old books? When he reads the total sum that awaits them, though, her face glows.
"One hundred platinum? That's quite a lot, isn't it?"
She then thinks about staying a month in that strange town having to spend time with all these unkown people, and worse, having to catter to te professor's daughter like a servant, and makes a grimace for a moment.
Before she has the chance of consenting to the professor's last will, Lord Bramwell speaks in response to Cerana.
"I'm Lord Bramwell, and this charming little girl beside me is Lyla, my protegé. We are pleased to be of assistance to you and the late professor, miss Kendra." He bows in respect and then looks at Cerana and the others. "From what I've heard so far, this seems a remarkable group to be working with." He looks at Lyla. "Right?"
|Dr. Benedict Darcy|
Benedict stands near the bookshelf for the reading of the will, not seeming to pay much attention. At Kalina's comment he quietly interjects, "Your meaning is kind my lady, but the Professor would have never set aside this money for us if he had not provided well for his daughter first. It is among the last wishes of a man who was dear to us all that you have that money, and you should honor that wish."
As everyone introduces themselves Benedict peers at each of them in turn, seemingly trying to soak in every detail. At his opportunity he adjusts his glasses and adds, "I am Doctor Benedict Darcy, house physician to House Harstov. The circumstances of our meeting are unfortunate, but it is a pleasure none the less." He looks thoughtful for a moment. "You would think that transporting these texts would not be something that would take so many armed or learned people. It is peculiar that he put us all to such a task and that he felt his daughter needed such a group to see to her safety for the next month."
"hello Cerana,Lord Bramwell, Lyla, Raoul, doctor Benedict, Tahlaera." Ash says nodding in turn to each one, flashing a smile at the child, then turns to gaze dreamily at Tahlaera a bit before continuing.
"You can call me Ash, I'm not from around here." He says simply, eyes darting about.
"it will please me to help fufill the professor's last wish, I look forward to it, and to the money." He says a bit abruptly, trying to stem off the last part, albeit too late.
|Torald Othric of Griffonstone|
The will of a dead honorful man should not be rejected. I'll be at your service miss Kendra.
Turning to the Group
My name ist Torald Othric of Griffonstone, but Torald suffices. I'm a servant of Sarenrae.
It ist startling that the professor has assigned such a big group for this task. He must have worried about something. We should be watchful the next month at all time.
Stepping aside, Ash turns to Kendra. Giving Kendra the most genuine look of sympathy he could muster, Ash says to her, "As much as we will all miss your father, he will be with us at the dinner table for the next month as we share our memories and stories of him, I'm sure you have many to tell."
Flashing an appropriate grin, he presses ever so gently, "I may not be speaking for myself alone when I say this" He then pauses a brief moment.
"I have come quite a bit of distance to be here and I hope you do not mistake me for being out of line Miss Lorrimor, but could you set me up with lodgings for my stay here in Ravengro?"
1d20 - 2 ⇒ (6) - 2 = 4
Cerana listens intently to all the names flying around. Matches the names to faces and thinks back to their stories and wonders what each of them truly did to earn the professors gratitude.
Her elven ears spring up when she hears that Ash is an elf not from these parts. Possibly he's from up north, he might know more about that time, no harm in asking.
She turns to Benedict;
"Yes I am wary of this task too, not that it would stop me doing it. Perhaps seeing what these texts are might answer our questions about this"
She slowly nods finally taking her hand away from her chin. Walks up to Kendra and the Councilman.
"I think the verdict is clear, we are willing to help. Is it possible for us to see this trunk and the tomes within when everyone has collected themselves? As for lodgings, as long as there is space on a piece of floor it will do, I've never need much in the way of room."
"Yes, your lodgings are arranged. While I haven't expected him to ask you to stay a full month, this house has a very big basement which continues under the neighbouring houses. There some guest quarters are already prepared, although I'll have to ask one group of four and two of two to each share a chamber.
Should you at some point find those no longer to your satisfaction we also have an inn in town.
Concerning the money, don't worry for me. As Dr. Benedict already guest I'm well provided for. Even his book collections alone are worth more than ten times that sum, although I don't plan to sell them.
But now I'll first get his chest so you can see what you are asked to deliver."
As she starts to leave the room the old Councilman speaks up "Kendra, I'm very sorry, but I think you'll have to do that without me since Sheriff Caeller awaits me for the sorry business with Gibs Hephenus. That old drunkard is in for an earnest scolding."
The young woman signalizes her consent and he leaves.
Kendra then goes to an adjacent room and produces a small oaken chest.
After opening it with the key from the scollcase you find 5 tomes inside it. On top lies an not tht old but well worn looking book in whose plain leather cover the words "Read me now" are scratched. Three of the other books, an old, but well kept jet-black tome, a slightly damaged volume that looks as if it was reconstructed from a far more decomposed state and an thick, crude book whose pages seem to be some kind of leather, have notes tucked to them indicating they should be delivered to one Montagnie Crowl, Professor of antiquities at Lepistadt University.
The last one, bound in rich purple leather rimmed with polished steel and kept closed by a brass scarab who is set with single eye which has a tiny keyhole in its center, on the other hand should be delivered Embreth Daramid and discreetly at that.
Well that answers the questions I just posted. I wish to make some knowledge checks to identify the markings and ornaments on the books.
What in the world...?
She leans in to pick up the first leather book that says 'Read me'. Cerana cautious opens the book almost expecting a magical trap of some kind. Though she knows that would be preposterous. She begins to read the contents of this book.
Cerana will turn to each of the marked pages and read out the entries enclosed to the rest of the group as she thinks that if they are marked as such, there is no use hiding this knowledge.
Afterwards she will pick up each of the other 3 unlocked tomes in turn and look at the first few pages to get some grasp of what they might hold.
Planes: 1d20 + 9 ⇒ (13) + 9 = 22
Arcana: 1d20 + 9 ⇒ (7) + 9 = 16
The cyrcled entries can be found here
The other two seem to be religious texts, one concerns Undead and notice the name of Urgathoa, goddess of undeath multiple times. The other one seems to be not only written on some kind of leather but also with a bloodlike fluid, but you don't manage to recognise anything else about it.
While introductions are going on, Kalina adds hers. The Professor sure had interesting...friends. And so many elves. I've never seen so many.
Kalina doesn't have pointed ears, although I really liked the avatar for her in all other ways
My name is -clears throat and starts again- My name is Kalina...she almost gives her last name and then thinks better of it.
I have been training at the Church of Pharasma, although I am not a priestessShe looks down embarrassed.But Pharasma has granted me some gifts in healing and protection that may be useful.
As Cerana is reading, Kalina tries to unobtrusively read over her shoulder, seeing if she can catch any additional details.
Perception: 1d20 + 6 ⇒ (17) + 6 = 23
Spellcraft: 1d20 + 4 ⇒ (16) + 4 = 20
Reading down, she exclaims Secret crypts at the Church? I knew nothing of this! Although...I guess I'm not one the Head Mother would tell.
Lyla pays attention to everyone's introduction trying to decide who she likes. When Ash says they're goiing to spend the month sharing memories of Lorrimor, she feels really annoyed. Gosh. Really? A whole month of this?
Once Cerana finishes reading the last entry in the professor's journal, Lyla says "Oh. That explains a lot."
Lord Bramwell, do we have to do this? I mean, I know it's a lot of money, but, well, it sounds like there's gonna be some real trouble... and... ach, I'm not sure I care that much!
That's the point, Lyla. You have powers that others, like miss Kendra, do not possess. And it is in times of danger that you'll always be needed most. I know you're young, but be strong! We must help this town; that's why the professor called us here, after all.
Bramwell speaks up. "Well, my comrades, it seems we have been summoned to investigate the matter of this 'whispering way'! Miss Kendra, what exactly were the circumstances of professor Lorrimor's death?"
"As far as we could reconstruct it, it seems he was slain by a falling gargoyle while investigating the old prison at night. At least Father Grimburrow told me that he was found with his face smashed by one and that he couldn't find anything else on him. Personally I couldn't stand to see him that way and thus can't verify it, but I trust the Father that far. What he was doing there at night, well you read the journal and he hasn't told me much more."
Lyla pictures professor Lorrimor's smashed face without even flinching, but it brings back memories of her time spent in captivity. Master would sometimes do worse than that to some of us...
She pulls her thoughts back to here and now and finds Kendra's report curious. "That's funny, him dying in an accident when he was so worried about the place that he wanted to redo his will. Maybe someone pushed the gargoyle?"
|Dr. Benedict Darcy|
Benedict reads over the entries carefully. At Kendra's description of the Professors death he frowns and looks back at the journal. After a moment he looks back to the group, "This journal indicates fairly clearly that the Professors last wish was not just for us to watch over lovely Kendra here, but also that we investigate the matters which he was in the process of investigating and in doing so the true nature of his death. That makes his intentions in bringing us all here much less confusing. A task like this will take the multitude of talents that we in this room possess."
Cerana looks at the one with leather bound book with red fluid in disgust.
I hope someone really didn't bother with writing down an entire book in blood when ink is far easier to come by and so much less hassle to stay on pages. I wonder if there could possibly be anything of value within this book? I will probably look at it later, I should focus my efforts on the one about abberations first, I at least have a starting point there. Might have something related to the 'ghosts' he was talking about.
Before inspecting the book "On Verified Madness" further, she hands Kalina the book where Urgathoa was mentioned multiple times.
"Kalina I think your expertise is far more suited to figuring out why the Professor would want to read a book like this than mine. You seemed surprised about the crypts and with Darcy's suspicions I dare say there might be some relation between what we have here. Urgathoa, 'ghosts', secret crypts... the next bit she says in elvish how deep were you into this Professor?"
She then takes up the book "On Verified Madness" and joins in on the conversation at hand while reading the book. Possibly interjecting as the conversation continues. Upon hearing talk about the Gargoyle she adds solemnly.
"Or it could have actually been a Gargoyle, or someone animated the statue. Any number of things could have happened. Unfortunately knowing how he died won't help us, we need to figure out why."
Knowledge planes: 1d20 + 9 ⇒ (19) + 9 = 28
Everyone who has the skills please make an history/local and an arcana/religion check, whichever Knowledge is better. This is to see what backround knowledge you have about various things, I'll send the results as PMs
Tahlaera smiles faintly at Ash, replying in Elven:
As the contents of the books are read, Tahlaera frowns. It deepens when the Professor's journal entries on the Whispering Way are read. I should have known the Whispering Way was involved. This wouldn't be the first time the Professor has crossed them. But why didn't he send for me sooner? she thinks. She replies to Jolienne, "The Whispering Way may well have been involved in the Professor's death. They have crossed paths with him before."
"Perhaps the false crypt would be a better starting point than the prison. Having the appropriate tools with which to fight the undead would greatly benefit us when we delve deeper into this plot, no doubt."
Knowledge (arcana): 1d20 + 7 ⇒ (18) + 7 = 25
Knowledge (religion): 1d20 + 4 ⇒ (4) + 4 = 8
|Dr. Benedict Darcy|
After reading the entries himself, Raoul responds to Dr.Darcy " I agree with you Doctor on investigating the Whispering Way. I think the first place to look is the prison."
Benedict nods at Raoul's statement, "I agree that we will eventually need to investigate the prison, but it has proven itself to be a dangerous place and some more investigation might be prudent first. I would suggest that we take a few steps first. First, we get this list of people that died in the Harrowstone fire that the Professor mentioned in his journal. Second, we find out what we can about the Whispering Way and Harrowstone itself. And third, we acquire some of the items from the "false crypt" that the Professor also mentioned in his journal. If there ARE ghosts or other creatures at the prison, then I want to go in prepared. Did I miss anything?"
|Torald Othric of Griffonstone|
Knowledge (religion) 1d20 + 3 ⇒ (18) + 3 = 21
I agree with Dr. Darcy. We have to prepare ourselves, before we go to the place where the Professor found his end.
Kendra seems to be suprisd by that question " No, I suppose not. Even if he would not believe that it was just an accident in a haunted house, I believe that would violate his faith."
"Looks like you covered it all Dr. Benedict. Very nice, so the Way is seeking something and the professor linked it to Harrowstone,what two months back? Good idea to be prepared, they already have a head start on us. Expanding upon Tahalera's point, before we go around and start asking questions, arousing any suspicion or cluing off a spy, maybe we should go to the "false crypt" first? I think it would be in our best interests to do that then gather information. Just to secure the equipment in our basement." Ash says, giving Tahalera an approving nod. Beauty and brains.
@ DM Fink, I don't know if this would apply to the books, but knowledge Dungeoneering does pertain to aberrations. I'll roll it but you can decide if it's appliciable in this instance.
1d20 + 5 ⇒ (1) + 5 = 6
hah, don't worry, paizo gods got to it first, auto-fail...
To Cerana~~ Do you want to try to open the locked book? Perhaps somewhere here can find a way?
Then with trepidation, she takes the book discussing Urgathoa, and examines it more closely.
Perception: 1d20 + 6 ⇒ (18) + 6 = 24
Spellcraft: 1d20 + 4 ⇒ (17) + 4 = 21
May I also take a look at that one? -points to the book with blood writing-
Perception: 1d20 + 6 ⇒ (20) + 6 = 26
Spellcraft: 1d20 + 4 ⇒ (13) + 4 = 17
Well that's two people who have entirely ignored me now. Oh well, Always the wall flower I guess.... No matter. Pity the book hasn't yielded anything.
A spy would have been clued up already, 9 mysteries armed stranger turning up at a funeral is quite... obvious. Though I am up to looking at this crypt. Cerana says, her mind still wondering about the Way and how to keep Kendra safe during their abscence.
Knowledge (arcana) 1d20 + 5 ⇒ (13) + 5 = 18
"Since it's almost bedtime, we can go to the secret crypt tomorrow morning." Lyla glances with suspicion at Dr. Darcy, Raoul, Ash and Torald, and then claps her hand and looks to the women. "I think us girls should stay in the same room! Cerana and Kalina can read the books there." She winks at the two, and then whispers to Cerana "Do you think it was a real gargoyle?"