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GM alientude's Shackled City

Game Master Kyle Smith 700

The frontier city of Cauldron has a dark future rapidly approaching. Will a disparate band of adventurers be able to save it?


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HP 15/18 AC 18/11/17 (19/12/17 when adjacent to 2 allies) F +4, R +1, W -1 (R +2 when adjacent to 2 allies)

Adolphus heads back to his adopted parents home, where he hopefully spends a pleasant afternoon and evening, is able to get some additional food supplies, and returns at the agreed on time.


Male Dwarf Cave Druid 2

Darthal shows up at Ghelve's at the agreed-upon time, with dog in tow.


retired

At dawn the next morning, Valamont arrives half a bell early while it is still dark within the caldera, whispering quietly to his sword. He seems much more prepared for his second foray into Jzadirune as he is now dressed in well fitted studded leather armor, has several daggers in a brace on his right hip, and a glaive in a harness over his right shoulder.

When Diurn arrives, Valamont offers the two rations he'd purchased the afternoon prior to make up for the extra rations Diurn had to offer to the mimic.


Dorian heads back to the Drunken Moth for the night. Eager to copy the scrolls they found into his spellbook (but too poor to do so), he finds sleep hard to come. He eventually manages to get some rest, and after preparing his spells for the day, he heads back to Ghelve's to meet with the rest of the group.


The party gets a good night's rest and reconvenes at Ghelve's in the morning.

What's the plan?


Aasimar (6/6 channel +ve, 7/7 ferocity, 7/7 adoration) Cleric 1 HP: 10/10 | CMD: 12 | AC: 18 (T: 11 / FF:17) | Fort +5 / Ref +1 / Will +8

"How about we continue to the last trace of the kids. On the way we can ask the mimic if anything came by while we were gone."


HP 15/18 AC 18/11/17 (19/12/17 when adjacent to 2 allies) F +4, R +1, W -1 (R +2 when adjacent to 2 allies)

"That seems a good enough plan as any. I do not speak the mimic's language, however."


Male Dwarf Cave Druid 2

Darthal strokes his beard nervously, and thoughtfully. "We need to rescue the children as swiftly as we may, but we do no good for them if we are trapped by someone coming behind us to hold the top of the shaft against our return. It seems to me we should clear the upper floor before descending deeper."


Aasimar (6/6 channel +ve, 7/7 ferocity, 7/7 adoration) Cleric 1 HP: 10/10 | CMD: 12 | AC: 18 (T: 11 / FF:17) | Fort +5 / Ref +1 / Will +8

"I left a message for our Jenya updating her."

To Darthal,
"I trust dwarves 100% in the caves. Lead on, and I will follow and keep you sustained with healing power. I would think we want to get to the children as quickly as possible and worry about the exit plan later. But I can see the wisdom in your words."


retired

Valamont agrees, "How terrible would it be for us to rescue the children only to bring them into near and bloody conflict on our way back to Cauldron? Equally terrible would be to clear our exit route only to find that in doing so we took too long in getting to the children." He pauses then, glancing briefly at his sword in its scabbard, "We can wonder at the what-ifs until Rovagug consumes the world but it will ultimately get us no farther than where we currently stand. We need to make a decision and pursue it. With the information we have, I'm in favor of descending the lift first. Mite seemed to react to the scent of the children there and even if we found ourselves in a fight on the way out - I think the children would be safer with us there than wherever they are presently."


Male Dwarf Cave Druid 2

"It seems I am outvoted. Ah, well, like brave Durina I shall loyally cling to my companions though they be unwise, and if our beards end up as decorations for hobgoblin banners I shall merely try to ensure that my ghost torments the dastard carrying mine. As the noble Valamont implies, we may already have delayed too long."

He tugs Mite forward. "Let us follow the nose of our brave companion, then, if the kidnappers have not found ways to hide the trail of scent."


HP 15/18 AC 18/11/17 (19/12/17 when adjacent to 2 allies) F +4, R +1, W -1 (R +2 when adjacent to 2 allies)

Adolphus nods in agreement with the plan presented.


Ghelve greets the party when you enter his store. "Going down there again? I hope you have as much success finding the children as you did with Starbrow. Luckily, none of those horrid creatures came up through my shop last night. There's often several days between their visits, so this is nothing unusual. Perhaps Desna has blessed your endeavor, and they know nothing about you yet."

After descending into Jzadirune, you retrace your steps back to the octagonal room. Everything is exactly as you left it, with the exception of the Mimic, which is nowhere to be found. Preparing yourselves, a lever on the wall is pulled, and the floor descends slowly. The walls turn from bare grey stone to polished black malachite as the elevator creaks and groans. After a minute-long descent down the dark shaft, the wooden floor shudders as it comes to rest, and the chains stop rattling. Above, the shaft rises into darkness. The only exit from this room appears to be an iron-reinforced wooden door set into one wall.

GM rolls:

1d20 + 7 ⇒ (15) + 7 = 22

Dreygard:

This room is familiar to you. Though it has been quite some time, and you were merely a child then, the shaft always held your interest. You are in the Malachite Fortress, where you once lived with your family before your brother, Zenith, led his crusade against the Underdark.

If you remember correctly, there was more than one exit to this room. Your eyes turn to the south, and you spot the barely-visible hidden door in the south wall.

Mite sniffs the air and barks quietly and runs to the door. Then he cocks his head and heads to the south wall, where he whines in confusion.

Map


"Hm... a mysterious door leading from an underground elevator shaft? I should probably check for magical wards."

Dorian gestures and casts detect magic, concentrating towards the door.


retired

"More secret passages?! Did gnomes craft this blasted place as well?"


Male Dwarf Cave Druid 2

"They crafted the upstairs, why not the downstairs?" Darthal lets the dog tug him toward the south wall. Noticing that Mite is ignoring the open door in favor of the south wall, he checks it for secret doors.

Perception 1d20 + 9 ⇒ (6) + 9 = 15

Also, is there any obvious way to get the elevator to go back up? (Lever on the platform, something like that?) And if the platform goes up, is there any way to bring it back down? Darthal doesn't trust gnome engineers to do anything sensible, and wants to secure his escape route.


Aasimar (6/6 channel +ve, 7/7 ferocity, 7/7 adoration) Cleric 1 HP: 10/10 | CMD: 12 | AC: 18 (T: 11 / FF:17) | Fort +5 / Ref +1 / Will +8

Diurn stares at the south wall a good long time trying to see if one of those hidden doors is there.
Taking 20+6=26 Perception


hp 17/17 Temp 0 | NL 0 perception +5 (+6 traps)(+7 or +8 stonework) AC 14; TAC 12; FFAC 12; CMD 16 (20 vs bull rush and trip) F +2; R +5; W +1 (+3 vs spells, spell-like, poison)

Dreygard points at the south wall, "There is a door there."


Dorian:
You detect no magical auras on the door or in the room.

Darthal spots no lever or other mechanism similar to the one at the top of the shaft that caused the elevator to lower.

As Dreygard says, there is indeed a secret door on the south wall. With a check of the area, Diurn finds a stone that can be pushed in slightly to open the door.

Assuming the secret door is opened:

The door opens into a cold, dark room. An iron lever juts from an iron plate bolted to the eastern wall. It takes little deduction to come to the conclusion that the lever operates the elevator. It is currently in the "down" position.

Map


retired

Valamont scratches Mite affectionately between the ears, "Well, at least we have a sharp-nosed hound and a sharp-eyed dwarf to reveal all the twisted corridors that no doubt lay ahead." He looks back up the shaft they'd just descended. "Say, is that malachite? We must be in the 'Malachite 'hold' mentioned in the riddle!"


Male Dwarf Cave Druid 2

Darthal opens the secret door, cautioning the party to remain on guard while he does so.

"Why would Mite guide us to the south wall here unless there is another secret door beyond it, through which the kids were taken?"

Darthal takes 20 to find a secret door in this room = 29


Aasimar (6/6 channel +ve, 7/7 ferocity, 7/7 adoration) Cleric 1 HP: 10/10 | CMD: 12 | AC: 18 (T: 11 / FF:17) | Fort +5 / Ref +1 / Will +8

After opening the door, Diurn follows and resumes the search in the new room. Diurn looks for two minutes at the middle of the south wall.
Take 20=20+5=25 perception


hp 17/17 Temp 0 | NL 0 perception +5 (+6 traps)(+7 or +8 stonework) AC 14; TAC 12; FFAC 12; CMD 16 (20 vs bull rush and trip) F +2; R +5; W +1 (+3 vs spells, spell-like, poison)

"Mum always said six eyes are better an two!"

Take 20aid another for Darthal, giving him a 31 perception


Despite multiple people thoroughly searching the hidden room, nothing is found.

Since I don't think my narrative abilities were up to the challenge, what I was trying to get at with Mite's behavior was that the scent went through both doors, the southwest and the hidden door to the south. He was confused by the one to the south, since it went into a blank wall, so he whined about it.


Male Dwarf Cave Druid 2

Then let us go through the door!


Aasimar (6/6 channel +ve, 7/7 ferocity, 7/7 adoration) Cleric 1 HP: 10/10 | CMD: 12 | AC: 18 (T: 11 / FF:17) | Fort +5 / Ref +1 / Will +8

"Lay on Mcdwarves."
A humurous reference to a famous dramatic writer.


retired

Valamont chuckles softly at Diurn's allusion, offering him a smile and a clap on the shoulder as they and the rest of the party proceed through the southwestern door.


Dreygard opens the door and moves into the next room. The ceiling of this hall rises to an apex twenty feet overheard. The floor, walls, and vaulted ceiling are composed of smooth black stone that almost seems to absorb light. Two cylindrical iron cages, each one five feet tall and two feet wide, dangle from the ceiling by iron chains. The base of each cage hangs five feet above the floor. A strange sculpture stands in the middle of the hall between the two cages: a five-foot tall column of roughly hewn gray stone covered with sharp protrusions. Four crystal-tipped appendages jut from the stony mass, each one pointing in a different direction.

Map


Male Dwarf Cave Druid 2

"Check it for magic," Darthal suggests in a low voice, pointing to the pillar.

i assume tha the cages are empty, yes?


Aasimar (6/6 channel +ve, 7/7 ferocity, 7/7 adoration) Cleric 1 HP: 10/10 | CMD: 12 | AC: 18 (T: 11 / FF:17) | Fort +5 / Ref +1 / Will +8

"I wonder what that sculpture is about. Maybe we each carefully search the sculpture, each cage, and the walls?"


retired

"It looks like a malformed direction post. 'Jzadirune this way.' 'Precious life bought with gold this way.' If only it were that easy."


hp 17/17 Temp 0 | NL 0 perception +5 (+6 traps)(+7 or +8 stonework) AC 14; TAC 12; FFAC 12; CMD 16 (20 vs bull rush and trip) F +2; R +5; W +1 (+3 vs spells, spell-like, poison)

"Oy vey! What is this? This place is screaming to be trapped. Give me a sec."

Trapfinding Perception 1d20 ⇒ 12
+5 non stone = 17
+7 stone = 19


Dorian nods at Darthal's suggestion, "Yes, good idea."

He casts detect magic again, this time in the direction of the strange column.


Male Dwarf Cave Druid 2

Darthal holds the dog's leash carefully so he doesn't run out and trigger a trap while Dreyguard is looking for them.


GM rolls:

1d20 + 18 ⇒ (5) + 18 = 23

The cages are indeed empty.

Dreygard steps forward to investigate the cages and statue while Dorian scans the place looking for magic.

Dorian:
You detect no magic auras.

As Dreygard passes the cages, an astounding sight unfolds before your eyes. The statue in the middle of the room moves, one of its arms slamming down at the surprised dwarf.

Attack roll: 1d20 + 5 ⇒ (11) + 5 = 16 for 1d8 + 6 ⇒ (1) + 6 = 7 damage.

Initiative rolls:

Dreygard: 1d20 + 4 ⇒ (4) + 4 = 8
Darthal: 1d20 ⇒ 17
Dorian: 1d20 + 4 ⇒ (19) + 4 = 23
Valamont: 1d20 + 1 ⇒ (4) + 1 = 5
Diurn: 1d20 + 1 ⇒ (18) + 1 = 19
Adolphus: 1d20 + 1 ⇒ (12) + 1 = 13
Creature: 1d20 - 1 ⇒ (2) - 1 = 1

Initiative Order

Dorian
Diurn
Darthal
Adolphus
Dreygard
Valamont
Creature

Map

Knowledge: Planes DC 12:
Now that the creature’s arms are moving and you can better see the crystals on the arms, you recognize the creature as a Stone Spike, a type of earth elemental. It has two slam attacks


Aasimar (6/6 channel +ve, 7/7 ferocity, 7/7 adoration) Cleric 1 HP: 10/10 | CMD: 12 | AC: 18 (T: 11 / FF:17) | Fort +5 / Ref +1 / Will +8

Diurn calmly reacts to the statue. "Let's flank this guy and take him out."

After Dorian moves, Diurn takes up his spot behind Dreygard and fully heals him. Move to K6, cure light wounds on Dreygard.

CLW 1d8 + 1 ⇒ (7) + 1 = 8 "Dreygard, I got your back, now move along the wall so we can all hit him."


Knowledge (planes) 1d20 + 7 ⇒ (3) + 7 = 10... awesome.

Dorian tries to recall anything he learned about creatures such as this, but nothing comes to mind. "I'm not sure what this is... it's not magical in nature, though!"

He then moves back from the statue (to L5) before casting magic weapon and touching Adolphus's greatsword. "This might help overcome any resistances it might have..." (Treat as a +1 greatsword for 10 rounds.)


hp 17/17 Temp 0 | NL 0 perception +5 (+6 traps)(+7 or +8 stonework) AC 14; TAC 12; FFAC 12; CMD 16 (20 vs bull rush and trip) F +2; R +5; W +1 (+3 vs spells, spell-like, poison)

F +2; R +4; W +1 (+3 vs spells, spell-like, poison)
AC 18; TAC 16; FFAC 12; CMD 15 (19 vs bull rush and trip)
hp 10/9 Temp 0 | NL 0 perception +4 (+5 traps)

"That's not a trap...ugh. Sumb*#+@! Oh, thanks Diurn!" Then the dwarf adopts a defensive posture and dives and rolls past the statue.

Total Defense then Acrobatics to avoid AoO.
Acrobatics 1d20 + 6 ⇒ (12) + 6 = 18
Move to H5


HP 15/18 AC 18/11/17 (19/12/17 when adjacent to 2 allies) F +4, R +1, W -1 (R +2 when adjacent to 2 allies)

At the first sign of trouble, Adolphus reaches for his greatsword.

He approaches and attacks the 'statue' with a mighty swing.

Power Attack
1d20 + 4 + 1 ⇒ (10) + 4 + 1 = 15 (flanking? +2 = 17)
2d6 + 9 + 1 ⇒ (1, 3) + 9 + 1 = 14


Male Dwarf Cave Druid 2

"We need wisdom to strike well!"

Darthal moves over to Adolphus and casts guidance on him.

+1 competence bonus on one d20 roll in the next minute, Adolphus picks which. I suggest your first 'to hit' roll.


HP 15/18 AC 18/11/17 (19/12/17 when adjacent to 2 allies) F +4, R +1, W -1 (R +2 when adjacent to 2 allies)

Confirmed. That would make it 16 or 18 if flanking.


1 person marked this as a favorite.

Dorian’s spell causes Adolphus’s sword to give off a bright glow reminiscent of Valamont’s when he empowers his own sword while Diurn’s healing spell removes the gash the creature’s attack opened on Dreygard’s skull, and Darthal blesses Adolphus with the wisdom of Torag.

Adolphus, feeling more prepared for this combat than any he’s yet encountered, steps forward and unleashes a mighty swing. His aim is true, yet the sword is deflected by the creature’s stony hide (Natural armor caused the hit to miss).

Dreygard slides to the south and then west, nimbly avoiding any danger from the stone creature. Note – Total defense is a full-round action. You can’t take it if you also move. Dreygard, feel free to make an attack in this round after moving to H5, if you wish.

1d1d20 + 4 ⇒ (1) + 4 = 5 for 1d10 + 5 ⇒ (3) + 5 = 8 damage.

Valamont touches his sword and whispers, ”Strike true this day, mother,” (Using arcane pool to give sword +1 enhancement) before stepping forward and attacking the creature. His attack is horribly off-balance, however, and he angrily spits out a few words. "I said strike true, not through the floor!"

Creature attacks Adolphus:
1d20 + 6 ⇒ (8) + 6 = 14 for 1d8 + 4 ⇒ (1) + 4 = 5 damage. (miss)
1d20 + 6 ⇒ (15) + 6 = 21 for 1d8 + 4 ⇒ (2) + 4 = 6 damage. (hit)

The creature raises two arms above its head and slams them down at Adolphus. One bounces harmlessly off his breastplate, but the other catches him squarely.

Initiative Order - Round 2

Dorian
Diurn
Darthal
Adolphus
Dreygard
Valamont
Creature

Map


hp 17/17 Temp 0 | NL 0 perception +5 (+6 traps)(+7 or +8 stonework) AC 14; TAC 12; FFAC 12; CMD 16 (20 vs bull rush and trip) F +2; R +5; W +1 (+3 vs spells, spell-like, poison)

The PRD lists total defense as a standard action, the effects just last a round. I was going to just fight defensively because I thought the same thing but then I looked it up just in case and was surprised.
Combat PRD


hp 17/17 Temp 0 | NL 0 perception +5 (+6 traps)(+7 or +8 stonework) AC 14; TAC 12; FFAC 12; CMD 16 (20 vs bull rush and trip) F +2; R +5; W +1 (+3 vs spells, spell-like, poison)

F +2; R +4; W +1 (+3 vs spells, spell-like, poison)
AC 14; TAC 12; FFAC 12; CMD 15 (19 vs bull rush and trip)
hp 10/9 Temp 0 | NL 0 perception +4 (+5 traps)

The dwarf pulls out his pick and slaps it in his palm. "Ah, a stone statue. This looks like the tool for the job!" He then hefts it high and swings at the statue.

Attack 1d20 + 5 ⇒ (16) + 5 = 21
Damage 1d6 + 4 + 1d6 ⇒ (4) + 4 + (5) = 13


Male Dwarf Cave Druid 2

Darthal steps up adjacent to the creature, hopefully giving someone a flanking bonus, and aids Adolphus' next attack on it...

1d20 ⇒ 12

...successfully.


Aasimar (6/6 channel +ve, 7/7 ferocity, 7/7 adoration) Cleric 1 HP: 10/10 | CMD: 12 | AC: 18 (T: 11 / FF:17) | Fort +5 / Ref +1 / Will +8

Diurn will charge the creature rushing to the spot Dreygard vacated activating ferocity and waiting for a flanking buddy if he can. "Surround him and pound him." Add +2 to hit if I have someone to flank with above that for the charge.
To hit/bashing damage1d20 + 2 + 2 ⇒ (15) + 2 + 2 = 191d8 + 3 ⇒ (3) + 3 = 6
Diurn activated his adoration if attacked.


Dorian moves to get a clearer shot at the statue (to J3), then raises a hand and sends a ball of acid at the creature.

Acid splash vs. touch 1d20 + 2 - 4 ⇒ (15) + 2 - 4 = 13; Damage 1d3 ⇒ 2


HP 15/18 AC 18/11/17 (19/12/17 when adjacent to 2 allies) F +4, R +1, W -1 (R +2 when adjacent to 2 allies)

Focusing his attack this time, instead of attempting to hack the statue to pieces, Adolphus swings again.

1d20 + 5 + 2 + 1 ⇒ (10) + 5 + 2 + 1 = 18 (+2 if flanking)
2d6 + 6 + 1 ⇒ (4, 6) + 6 + 1 = 17

Enchanted Sword rounds 2/10


GM rolls:
1d20 - 1 ⇒ (17) - 1 = 16

I stand corrected, Dreygard. Thanks for pointing that out.

Dorian moves around the pillar to get a clear shot and launches a ball of acid at the stone creature. It lands solidly and burns away a patch of stone. Diurn also moves around the pillar and adjacent to Adolphus (Valamont is in the square Dreygard vacated, and just about any other spot adjacent to the creature would provoke getting to, so I took a little liberty here) and attacks, but his flail just misses the statue.

Darthal studies the flow of battle and says to Adolphus, ”Attack low! It’s not defending itself well there!”

The sound of battle seems to have alerted something as the door to the south opens. Nobody has a good view of what opened the door, but Diurn and Darthal can just barely make out a large humanoid shape.

Adolphus heeds Darthal’s advice and swings low, scoring a devastating blow on the statue. It teeters to the side, but remains standing.

Dreygard looks to attack also, but notes with concern that the creature seems not the least bothered by being flanked by him and Adolphus. Still, he drives the pick into the creature’s chest, the pick sinking deep and shattering the entire statue.

Valamont, seeing the creature destroyed, holds ready, waiting to see what comes out of the door.

Initiative Order – Round 3

Dorian
Diurn
Darthal
Creature
Adolphus
Dreygard
Valamont

Map


Male Dwarf Cave Druid 2

Darthal points out the newcomer in a low urgent voice and casts guidance on Adolphus again.

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