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GM SpiderBeard's Second Darkness

Game Master Barvo Delancy

Chapter 3: The Armageddon Echo

Currently At: The Meirani Forest

Loot Spreadsheet


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CN Male Elf Inquisitor of Calistria 7 | HP 28/40 | AC 19 (T 12 F 18) | CMB +9, CMD 21 | F +6 R +4 W +9 | Init. +4 | Percep +15, Sense Motive +16 | Speed 30ft | Judgment: 3 | Conditions: -

Variel looks to the others. "Do all of you accept the bargain? Six thousand gold for the ledger, and we agree to a partnership with Shorafa and the church for sharing information?"


Spell Slots: 1st: 3/4; 2nd: 4/4; 3rd: 1/2|Performance Rounds: 21/24|Female Human (Shoanti) Skald 7|AC: 20/13/17 (19/12/16 in Raging Song)|HP: 49/52(50/53)|Saves: Fort: +8, Ref: +5, Will: +7 (+10 in Raging Song) (+4 vs. Bardic Performance, Sonic, Language-Dependent, +1 vs Fear)|Init: +6|Perc: +12

Fiona pauses for a bit, then nods. "Very well."


Male Human (Varisian/Shoanti) Bloodrager (primalist) 7 | AC 17 T 11 FF 17 | Damage Reduction 1/- | HP 68/72 | F +8 R +2 W +4 (+1 morale bonus to all saves vs fear) | Init +4 | Perc +11

Elias and Mutt:
Mutt takes in the explanation. "So... my magic... comes from my blood? And something in my past? Like those sorcerers? How very... odd. I really don't know anything about my heritage. So, I don't know if there is some sort of thing in my family like a dragon or some kind of greater power." He then takes the book that Elias gives him. "Thank you. I will look this over."

And I will add that book to my alias. How much would it weigh?

======
The House of the Silken Veil
======

Mutt nods at Shorafa's wink. When Variel checks with the others, Mutt nods. "I have no problem with that."


NG Male Human Witch 7 | HP 33/44 | AC 13 (12 Touch, 11 Flat-footed) | CMB +4, CMD 19 | Fort. +6, Ref. +4, Will +7 | Init. +5 | Perc. +8/10 | Speed 30ft | Spells: 1st 5/5, 2nd 3/4, 3rd 3/3, 4th 2/2 | Active conditions: N/A
GM Spiderbeard wrote:
Long posts so I'm spoilering, although these aren't private.

Well, not sure about Mutt, but mine is. Thaddeus wanted to speak to Elias privately. Not that I care if the rest of you read it, but your characters wouldn't know what was being discussed.

=====

The Cypherlodge:
Thaddeus takes the book and again nods in appreciation.

"Mah thanks, Elias. Guess when Ah was growin' up in mah home village, it seemed 'dat anywhere where smarter people went had t'know everythin'. Still, 'dis gives me somethin' t'go off of, at least."


=====

=====
The House of the Silken Veil
=====

Thaddeus steps up at Shorafa's question

"Well, Ah'd like t'add somethin' t'this deal. Ain't monetary, don' worry."

"Ah got a few interests in 'dis city, Shorafa, 'n Ah'd hope 'dat dey'd stay out of whatever yer schemes may be. Not sayin' yeh gotta support 'em or protect 'em, jus' 'dat Ah hope when Ah come back t'town, 'dey aren't a front fer you, or removed 'cause yeh had a better plan fer th'land 'dey were on."

"First is th'casino. Ah'm shore you've seen th'renovation work on it. We're aimin' t'reopen soon. Like Ah said, don' need t'sponsor it 'r guard it, jus' don' start screwin' 'round wit' it."

"Next is St. Caspieran's Salvation, little poor house east o'the harbour. Ah've been workin' on improvin' it. Again, don't have t'actively support it, though Ah certainly wouldn't mind yeh makin' a regular charitable donation 'dere. Jus' don' wanna see it become a second temple t'Calistria, 'r somethin' like 'dat."

"An' finally, th'Order o' Cyphers. Jus' was able t'get membership 'dere, an' Ah've been 'ssigned t'do more research on th'drow 'n 'dere scheme. Hopin' it's still a center o'learnin' when Ah get back."

"'Pologies fer bein' blunt, but Ah ain't good at sugarcoatin' mah words. An', yeah, Ah'm good wit' th'cash."


.

Post will come tomorrow since it will be extensive. Bear with!


.

============
House of the Silken Veil
============

Shorafa listens to Thaddeus and takes a moment before responding.

"I consider the casino, and the mission to be assets under your protection and will treat them accordingly. The Cypher Lodge is a more interesting situation. Elias and I have a... complicated relationship. Frankly we tend to avoid doing business directly with one another because our agendas differ so much."

She takes a moment before speaking.

"Let me put it this way. Your status as a Cyphermage should not cause any issues between us."

With the amount agreed-to, Shorafa arranges to have six thousand gold in platinum delivered to the group.


.

Chapter 3, The Armageddon Echo

Several days have passed since your arrangements were established with the Calistrians and Cypher Mages, allowing you to do any shopping you wished and set your affairs in order. During this time, Kwava has promised an eventual meeting, after consulting with his seniors in the Shin'Rakorath. You meet in what was formerly Saul's office in the Gold Goblin.

"I have read through the journals, and they are grave tidings intdeed. When you discovered Vancaskerkin ws working with the dark elves, I could hardly believe it. Now I raelize there are far more terrible events in motion. If the drow have learned to pull stars from the sky, none of us are safe.

"I must ask a great favour of you. The Shin'Rakorath have recently revealed to me the full extent of the drow menace. The drow have captured, and long held the ancient elven city of Celwynvian in the Meirani Forest. As much as I would love to see the city, my orders are to remain in Riddleport and its hinterlands to keep watch for further drow influence here. This journal you have found, as well as the one recovered from Depora would be of great use to my kin in Meirani Forest. The Shin'Rakorath and I ask you to take these journals to Crying Leaf, a small camp in the eastern reaches of the wood. Take it to Eviana, the leader of Crying Leaf. She will know what to do."


NG Male Human Witch 7 | HP 33/44 | AC 13 (12 Touch, 11 Flat-footed) | CMB +4, CMD 19 | Fort. +6, Ref. +4, Will +7 | Init. +5 | Perc. +8/10 | Speed 30ft | Spells: 1st 5/5, 2nd 3/4, 3rd 3/3, 4th 2/2 | Active conditions: N/A

==========
House of the Silken Veil
==========

Thaddeus furrows his brow a bit at Shorafa's words. He still feels like he's being taken advantage of, and those words were chosen for just that reason. But he doesn't have the skill, nor the time, to analyze everything she said. Or stick around and insure it. So he sighs and nods at the deal.

==========
Kwava
==========

"Wait, is 'dis city still occupied? Ah mean, 'fore th'Drow came in? Ah figured it was ancient ruins, and th'Drow just moved in."

"Actually, few questions, 'den. What's all in Meirani forest? We talkin' elven stronghold? Couple a' settlements? Or everyone's left long 'go? Are we gonna be walkin' int'Elven lands, Ah'm askin'? Wanna know th'customs of a place 'fore yeh start stompin' 'round innit, y'know?"

"Also be good t'meet th'rest o'yer crew in th' Shin'Rakorath."


CN Male Elf Inquisitor of Calistria 7 | HP 28/40 | AC 19 (T 12 F 18) | CMB +9, CMD 21 | F +6 R +4 W +9 | Init. +4 | Percep +15, Sense Motive +16 | Speed 30ft | Judgment: 3 | Conditions: -

"Fortunately, you will have me along, so the elves won't shoot on sight for trespassing. I haven't been to Mierani myself, but our people are recovering the forest from demons that infested it while we were away. Kwava, if the drow are in Celwynvian, does that mean they are in league with the demons?"


NG Male Human Witch 7 | HP 33/44 | AC 13 (12 Touch, 11 Flat-footed) | CMB +4, CMD 19 | Fort. +6, Ref. +4, Will +7 | Init. +5 | Perc. +8/10 | Speed 30ft | Spells: 1st 5/5, 2nd 3/4, 3rd 3/3, 4th 2/2 | Active conditions: N/A

"'Less every elf thinks 'xactly th'same, prob'ly best not t'ssume dey'll greet us wit'open arms jus'cause yeh happen t'have pointy ears, too. 'Course, don' mean dey're gonna greet us wit' a volley o'arrows jus'cause we're walkin' on 'dere land, either. Hence why Ah'm askin'."


CN Male Elf Inquisitor of Calistria 7 | HP 28/40 | AC 19 (T 12 F 18) | CMB +9, CMD 21 | F +6 R +4 W +9 | Init. +4 | Percep +15, Sense Motive +16 | Speed 30ft | Judgment: 3 | Conditions: -

===========
Kwava
===========

Variel nods at Thaddeus. "They don't have to like me, they just have to respect my authority."

===========
Order of Cyphers
===========

While others talk to the Cyphermages about their various studies, Variel asks around and locates a wizard who is knowledgeable about magic weapons.

"This whip is a sacred weapon, dedicated to Calistria and a symbol of my office. It appears that I will have need to use it against people of my own bloodline soon. I wish it enchanted to specifically punish those of elven blood who I use it against."


Spell Slots: 1st: 3/4; 2nd: 4/4; 3rd: 1/2|Performance Rounds: 21/24|Female Human (Shoanti) Skald 7|AC: 20/13/17 (19/12/16 in Raging Song)|HP: 49/52(50/53)|Saves: Fort: +8, Ref: +5, Will: +7 (+10 in Raging Song) (+4 vs. Bardic Performance, Sonic, Language-Dependent, +1 vs Fear)|Init: +6|Perc: +12

Kwava

...leaving this place?

It's oddly surprising for Fiona. On the one hand, her opinion of Riddleport hadn't changed all that much--it was a city of duplicitous, backstabbing scumbags, and part of her understood that short of the city being suddenly wiped off the map, it wouldn't change.

On the other hand, she's carved out a place for herself here. The Lucky Dog developed a reputation for being an establishment where men & women could go seeking honest work and a good time. They made arrangements with the Temple of Calistria (although part of her wondered just how long it'd take for the Dog to be dragged into local politics), so they had influential patronage...

...it almost felt like home. And Fiona had developed great talents for sussing out lies and spinning them in turn.

I've spent too much time here, I think.

"If the worst happens, I might still be able to convince them of our good intentions. I think I've proven time and again that I can do that, if nothing else."


Male Human (Varisian/Shoanti) Bloodrager (primalist) 7 | AC 17 T 11 FF 17 | Damage Reduction 1/- | HP 68/72 | F +8 R +2 W +4 (+1 morale bonus to all saves vs fear) | Init +4 | Perc +11

======
House of the Silken Veil
======

GM SpiderBeard wrote:
"I consider the casino, and the mission to be assets under your protection and will treat them accordingly. The Cypher Lodge is a more interesting situation. Elias and I have a... complicated relationship. Frankly we tend to avoid doing business directly with one another because our agendas differ so much.”

Mutt nods at Shorafa. ”Thank you. I really don't want to lose that casino. Not after all the work we put into getting it.”

GM SpiderBeard wrote:
With the amount agreed-to, Shorafa arranges to have six thousand gold in platinum delivered to the group.

Mutt nods at the high priestess. ”Thank you, ma’am. Happy to do business with you.”

Mutt looks at Shorafa. He thinks about something. ”Excuse me, Shorafa. I have a question about your religion. We came across a follower of your goddess on the island. All of us talked about our pasts and I told him mine. He told me that I should ‘tend the fire of vengeance’ that’s within me or something like that. Now, I mainly worship Gorum. But, if I was interested in Calistria’s faith and vengeance, what can she offer me?”

======
Order of the Cyphers
======

During the time that the group is at the Cypher Lodge, Mutt makes his way around the building to try and find a mage to enchant his weapon. When he finds one, he says, ”Excuse me. I am going to be killing dark elves in the future. I am wondering if I could get my greataxe enchanted to do more damage against them.”

======
Free Days
======

The next several days are somewhat a more casual time for Mutt. The first day, Mutt spends time with Fetch and his men, partly to try and get over the fact that he nearly died. During a game of cards, Mutt shares what he found out about the drow. ”So, that’s the story. I may need to go out and try to fight the drow. So, I’m going to be gone for a while.” Fetch whines as he rests his head on Mutt’s knee. Mutt scratches his dog’s head as he looks at his team of bouncers. He gives a small smile. “I’m really glad that you guys have stuck around this long. This place wouldn’t be what it is without you guys.” He raises his mug. ”To you! And to the Lucky Dog!”

During the second day, Mutt decides to hang around the Lucky Dog. He does some basic workouts to keep him in shape. He then pulls out the book on sorcery that Elisa gave him. He tries to absorb the knowledge in the tome and do some exercises to help practice.

How much would that book weigh, Spiderbeard? Also, I may have missed this; but did we sell off the noqual that we had gotten from the island?

On the third day, Mutt decides to go out to the House of the Silken Veil. When he arrives, he begins looking for Isadora.

======
Kwava
======

Mutt listens to what Kwava has to say. While Thaddeus and Variel discuss, Mutt thinks to himself. ’Leave Riddleport? After everything that’s happened?’ He thinks about everything to this point. Arriving in Riddleport. Acquiring a job. Killing Vancaskerkin and getting the casino. Adopting Fetch. Recruiting and befriending his bouncers. Meeting Shorafa and Isadora. Discovering the drow. Going to the island and fighting more drow and getting the skymetal. And, most importantly, meeting the people that he can honestly call his friends. Fiona, Variel, Thaddeus, Bofur, Grunyn, and Ellesbeth. Despite only coming here to find a new life, Mutt has found something else: a true home.

However, he realizes that he can’t deny the threat of the drow. Especially since they are going to be dropping meteors on everything. With a stern and determined gaze, he looks to Kwava. ”I’m in.”


.

On the noqual, you guys can just say you sold it to Shorafa or the gas forges for the listed value, unless you want to play some political games with it.

===========
House of the Silken Veil
===========

Shorafa looks over Mutt for a moment, critically, before speaking.

"There is room in a mortal heart for many gods. It is not a competition. Well, for most. I am a High Priest of Calistria, but I may mutter a word to Pharasma for the departed or to Shelyn when art steals my breath. You do not have to forsake one god to look to another."

Slowly, Shorafa paces around Mutt, sizing him up.

"Old Grudge is a zealot, which I admire. But his interpretation of the Savored Sting is admittedly simple, perhaps not a bad thing. Vengeance is sacred to a Calistrian. To destroy an enemy is one thing, but to destroy an enemy who has wronged you is quite another. It is personal, it is a primal force, and it is delicious. What he is saying is that you must stoke those fires within yourself, because true power lies in channeling that anger to a fine point."

She raises a single clawed finger.

"But, she is more than that. Calistria is about rewarding yourself. The strength is in lust, not love. In vengeance, not justice. And in the sheer pleasure of lying and getting away with it. Calistria is subtle, political, deadly, and utterly selfish. Where Gorum is a greatsword that will sweep off six heads at once, Calistria is a whip which takes out an eye.

"Call upon Calistria for your vengeance and she will give you purpose and meaning. But don't give up your Lord in Iron. Frankly, he suits you. You are built for waging war, not sex and politics. Well, not politics at least."

===============
At the Lucky Dog
===============

It's good to have made friends, and thanks to diligent efforts you have contacts and friends or allies at St. Caspieran's Mission, the Cypher Lodge, the Publican House, the House of the Silken Veil, and an unknown quantity of friends and enemies amongst the Riddleport underworld. You manage to source a good candidate - an older halfling woman named Marra Redleaf who is willing to quit her job as an assistant manager at the House of Nabin to come work for you. She has a hard-bitten, no-nonsense quality to her and was looking for a way to get out from a boss she hated.

==============
Kwava
==============

Kwava nods over to Thaddeus. "Crying Leaf is the major settlement near the outskirts of the forest, it's an elven town and it's been dedicated to keep outsiders away from the forest and Celwynvian within. In retrospect, they may have been focused more on keeping the drow contained. Celwynvian was abandoned with the coming of the Age of Darkness - roughly ten thousand years ago. The drow occupy it. For how long, I'm not sure. The Meirani Forest itself is notoriously dangerous, a home to powerful magical beasts. Of course, that may be some of the Crying Leaf residents spreading rumours to keep people away."


Male Human (Varisian/Shoanti) Bloodrager (primalist) 7 | AC 17 T 11 FF 17 | Damage Reduction 1/- | HP 68/72 | F +8 R +2 W +4 (+1 morale bonus to all saves vs fear) | Init +4 | Perc +11
GM SpiderBeard wrote:
On the noqual, you guys can just say you sold it to Shorafa or the gas forges for the listed value, unless you want to play some political games with it.

Okay. What does the rest of the group want to do with it?

GM SpiderBeard wrote:

Shorafa looks over Mutt for a moment, critically, before speaking.

"There is room in a mortal heart for many gods. It is not a competition. Well, for most. I am a High Priest of Calistria, but I may mutter a word to Pharasma for the departed or to Shelyn when art steals my breath. You do not have to forsake one god to look to another."

Mutt stands a bit straighter as Shorafa looks him over. At her words, he nods. "Well... you do have a point there."

GM SpiderBeard wrote:

Slowly, Shorafa paces around Mutt, sizing him up.

"Old Grudge is a zealot, which I admire. But his interpretation of the Savored Sting is admittedly simple, perhaps not a bad thing. Vengeance is sacred to a Calistrian. To destroy an enemy is one thing, but to destroy an enemy who has wronged you is quite another. It is personal, it is a primal force, and it is delicious. What he is saying is that you must stoke those fires within yourself, because true power lies in channeling that anger to a fine point."

Mutt watches as Shorafa circles him. "Well, how would I do that? How do I channel my anger into that fine point? When I get angry, I use that anger to take down everyone as quickly and painfully as possible because they p****d me off."

GM SpiderBeard wrote:

She raises a single clawed finger.

"But, she is more than that. Calistria is about rewarding yourself. The strength is in lust, not love. In vengeance, not justice. And in the sheer pleasure of lying and getting away with it. Calistria is subtle, political, deadly, and utterly selfish. Where Gorum is a greatsword that will sweep off six heads at once, Calistria is a whip which takes out an eye.

Mutt rubs his chin. "Well, I can't lie. Mostly I just... scare people. As for lust, I really don't know much about that. As a slave, I couldn't have women. They were only hanging onto me for appearances... and for the b*****d that owned me."

GM SpiderBeard wrote:
"Call upon Calistria for your vengeance and she will give you purpose and meaning. But don't give up your Lord in Iron. Frankly, he suits you. You are built for waging war, not sex and politics. Well, not politics at least."

Mutt's brow raises. "I won't forsake Gorum. He's one of the few things I have. As for what I'm built for, I have a question about that. War, I get. Politics is also obvious. I don't have time for much talking. I'd rather get things done. But, do you really think that I'm built for Calistria's... practices?" His face shows a small hint of red.

GM SpiderBeard wrote:
It's good to have made friends, and thanks to diligent efforts you have contacts and friends or allies at St. Caspieran's Mission, the Cypher Lodge, the Publican House, the House of the Silken Veil, and an unknown quantity of friends and enemies amongst the Riddleport underworld. You manage to source a good candidate - an older halfling woman named Marra Redleaf who is willing to quit her job as an assistant manager at the House of Nabin to come work for you. She has a hard-bitten, no-nonsense quality to her and was looking for a way to get out from a boss she hated.

Mutt watches as Marra Redleaf is introduced as the manager of the Lucky Dog. When she has the time, Mutt approaches her, Fetch in tow. "Excuse me? Marra? Hello. My name is Mutt. I'm the head bouncer here. I just wanted to introduce myself and my men." Fetch barks. The warrior smiles and looks down at his dog. "And this is Fetch."

Diplomacy: 1d20 + 2 ⇒ (18) + 2 = 20

======
Isadora
======

Mutt goes through the House of the Silken Veil, looking for Isadora. When he finds her, he slowly approaches her. "Excuse me? Isadora? I was wondering if I could have a word with you."

GM SpiderBeard wrote:
Kwava nods over to Thaddeus. "Crying Leaf is the major settlement near the outskirts of the forest, it's an elven town and it's been dedicated to keep outsiders away from the forest and Celwynvian within. In retrospect, they may have been focused more on keeping the drow contained. Celwynvian was abandoned with the coming of the Age of Darkness - roughly ten thousand years ago. The drow occupy it. For how long, I'm not sure. The Meirani Forest itself is notoriously dangerous, a home to powerful magical beasts. Of course, that may be some of the Crying Leaf residents spreading rumours to keep people away."

Mutt blinks. "Ten thousand years ago? And you abandoned it? Why?" When Kwava brings up the rumors about powerful magical beasts in the forest, Mutt gives a vicious smirk. "Dangerous beasts? Sounds like fun. Bring it on."


NG Male Human Witch 7 | HP 33/44 | AC 13 (12 Touch, 11 Flat-footed) | CMB +4, CMD 19 | Fort. +6, Ref. +4, Will +7 | Init. +5 | Perc. +8/10 | Speed 30ft | Spells: 1st 5/5, 2nd 3/4, 3rd 3/3, 4th 2/2 | Active conditions: N/A

Noqual diversion:
GM Spiderbeard wrote:
On the noqual, you guys can just say you sold it to Shorafa or the gas forges for the listed value, unless you want to play some political games with it.
Mutt wrote:
Okay. What does the rest of the group want to do with it?

I'm done playing politics in Riddleport, now that I got a vague agreement that my/our interests in the city won't be pieces in whatever games are being played. So we just sold it. At most, Thaddeus may have tried to sell portions of it to the Cyphermages for 'research.' But otherwise, no trying for political maneuvers in Riddleport.

========
The Lucky Dog
========

GM Spiderbeard wrote:
It's good to have made friends, and thanks to diligent efforts you have contacts and friends or allies at St. Caspieran's Mission, the Cypher Lodge, the Publican House, the House of the Silken Veil, and an unknown quantity of friends and enemies amongst the Riddleport underworld. You manage to source a good candidate - an older halfling woman named Marra Redleaf who is willing to quit her job as an assistant manager at the House of Nabin to come work for you. She has a hard-bitten, no-nonsense quality to her and was looking for a way to get out from a boss she hated.

Thaddeus appreciates the blunt nature of Marra. He takes the time to introduce her to the rest of the Lucky Dog's staff, especially Mutt's boys. Still, recognizing her nature, he gets down to business fairly quickly, outlining her responsibilities. Though Thaddeus is fairly hands off about it. "Keep th'place runnin, keep everyone paid, keep our rooms clean, an' make a regular donation t'the mission. Beyond 'dat, Ah'll let'cha decide how best t'drum up business. Live ennertainment, specials, tournaments, whatever works."

========
Kwava
========

Fiona Sun-Touched wrote:
"If the worst happens, I might still be able to convince them of our good intentions. I think I've proven time and again that I can do that, if nothing else."

"Ah think ye've proved yeh can do a whole heck of a lot more 'den jus' speak nicely," Thaddeus remarks, looking at Fiona's earthbreaker.

GM Spiderbeard wrote:
"Crying Leaf is the major settlement near the outskirts of the forest, it's an elven town and it's been dedicated to keep outsiders away from the forest and Celwynvian within. In retrospect, they may have been focused more on keeping the drow contained. Celwynvian was abandoned with the coming of the Age of Darkness - roughly ten thousand years ago. The drow occupy it. For how long, I'm not sure. The Meirani Forest itself is notoriously dangerous, a home to powerful magical beasts. Of course, that may be some of the Crying Leaf residents spreading rumours to keep people away."

"Hmm, hope 'dey're open 'fer diplomacy. Sounds like we may have a mite o'difficulty gettin' to th'city, if'n dey wanna keep everyone out."


Spell Slots: 1st: 3/4; 2nd: 4/4; 3rd: 1/2|Performance Rounds: 21/24|Female Human (Shoanti) Skald 7|AC: 20/13/17 (19/12/16 in Raging Song)|HP: 49/52(50/53)|Saves: Fort: +8, Ref: +5, Will: +7 (+10 in Raging Song) (+4 vs. Bardic Performance, Sonic, Language-Dependent, +1 vs Fear)|Init: +6|Perc: +12
Thaddeus wrote:
"Ah think ye've proved yeh can do a whole heck of a lot more 'den jus' speak nicely."

"Of course I can." Fiona casually twirls her earthbreaker. "But unlike what some would have you believe, I don't like employing force unless I really need to."

Thaddeus wrote:
"Hmm, hope 'dey're open 'fer diplomacy. Sounds like we may have a mite o'difficulty gettin' to th'city, if'n dey wanna keep everyone out."

"For their sake, they'd better be."


.

=========
Mutt
=========

Shorafa shrugs at your question. "Calistria has power because everyone is built for her rites. You have a working body and a not-bad mind. It's a question of how far you're willing to take yourself - and your self-interest."

----

You find Isadora easily enough as she was waiting for your meeting to be finished with Shorafa. The coy priestess wraps her arms around you.

"I'm here. I missed you."

==========
Lucky Dog
==========

Marra looks way up to Mutt, and shakes his head with a surprisingly firm grip. She's immediately taken in with Fetch.

"Well we have a good boy here. Yes we do. I know someone who is going to get the best kitchen scraps."

During her introductions to the staff, she finally turns to Mutt, Thaddeus, and any other presence.

"I'll take good care of the staff Mr. Mutt and Mr. Claville. I admit it's a little odd working for five people at once, but you all seem to speak with one mind. I'll keep the place open, kick out the cheaters, and make some money. You got any special instructions for your dog here or elsewise?"


Male Human (Varisian/Shoanti) Bloodrager (primalist) 7 | AC 17 T 11 FF 17 | Damage Reduction 1/- | HP 68/72 | F +8 R +2 W +4 (+1 morale bonus to all saves vs fear) | Init +4 | Perc +11
GM SpiderBeard wrote:
Shorafa shrugs at your question. "Calistria has power because everyone is built for her rites. You have a working body and a not-bad mind. It's a question of how far you're willing to take yourself - and your self-interest."

Mutt scratches his chin in thought at this.

GM SpiderBeard wrote:

You find Isadora easily enough as she was waiting for your meeting to be finished with Shorafa. The coy priestess wraps her arms around you.

"I'm here. I missed you."

Mutt is somewhat surprised at the hug before he returns it. "I missed you, too." He looks at the smaller woman. "Listen, I was wondering if... uh... you wanted to... go out for a night on the town? I don't know how much longer I'm going to be in Riddleport before having to leave for an important mission."

So, are Mutt and Isadora a couple now?

GM SpiderBeard wrote:

Marra looks way up to Mutt, and shakes his head with a surprisingly firm grip. She's immediately taken in with Fetch.

"Well we have a good boy here. Yes we do. I know someone who is going to get the best kitchen scraps."

Mutt smiles at Marra and Fetch. "Well, boy, looks like you're going to be treated very well while I'm gone." Fetch barks in (supposed) agreement.

GM SpiderBeard wrote:

During her introductions to the staff, she finally turns to Mutt, Thaddeus, and any other presence.

"I'll take good care of the staff Mr. Mutt and Mr. Claville. I admit it's a little odd working for five people at once, but you all seem to speak with one mind. I'll keep the place open, kick out the cheaters, and make some money. You got any special instructions for your dog here or elsewise?"

Mutt nods at Marra as she says that she'll keep the Lucky Dog running. When she asks about Fetch's care, Mutt thinks for a moment before saying, "Not much. Just make sure he's well fed, taken care of, and that he doesn't get into too much trouble. My men can make sure that he gets his exercise during the off hours of the casino."


Spell Slots: 1st: 3/4; 2nd: 4/4; 3rd: 1/2|Performance Rounds: 21/24|Female Human (Shoanti) Skald 7|AC: 20/13/17 (19/12/16 in Raging Song)|HP: 49/52(50/53)|Saves: Fort: +8, Ref: +5, Will: +7 (+10 in Raging Song) (+4 vs. Bardic Performance, Sonic, Language-Dependent, +1 vs Fear)|Init: +6|Perc: +12

Once Fiona has a spare minute, she goes looking for Thaddeus. She's looking surprisingly pensive today.

"Thaddeus? Got a minute?"


NG Male Human Witch 7 | HP 33/44 | AC 13 (12 Touch, 11 Flat-footed) | CMB +4, CMD 19 | Fort. +6, Ref. +4, Will +7 | Init. +5 | Perc. +8/10 | Speed 30ft | Spells: 1st 5/5, 2nd 3/4, 3rd 3/3, 4th 2/2 | Active conditions: N/A

=====
The Lucky Dog
=====

Quote:
"I'll take good care of the staff Mr. Mutt and Mr. Claville. I admit it's a little odd working for five people at once, but you all seem to speak with one mind. I'll keep the place open, kick out the cheaters, and make some money. You got any special instructions for your dog here or elsewise?"

"Eeeh, mostly it's jus' me n' Mutt dat count as yer bosses. Variel hepled in pickin' yeh, but him 'n Fiona ain't 'dat interested in runnin' th'place. Wait, five people?"

"Special instructions? Hmm.... Not 'dat Ah kin think of. Keep some cash saved 'fer slow periods, 'r emergencies, Ah guess? If yeh make some big profits, share it 'mong th'employees would be nice. Ah, actually... Need any more gold t'help get th'place goin'gain? Ah think most o'the renovation cash is spent."

Fiona Sun-Touched wrote:

Once Fiona has a spare minute, she goes looking for Thaddeus. She's looking surprisingly pensive today.

"Thaddeus? Got a minute?"

Thaddeus was in the main foyer of the dorms, reading a book and taking notes. Old Horn sat on the ground, munching on a bowl of potato skins. He looks up at Fiona's question, setting down his quill pen.

"Hmm? Sure, Fiona, what'cha need?"

=========
Kwava
=========

"Say, 'veryone. Got tents, food, 'n bedrolls? Sounds like we may be campin' a few nights unner th'stars."


2 people marked this as a favorite.
Spell Slots: 1st: 3/4; 2nd: 4/4; 3rd: 1/2|Performance Rounds: 21/24|Female Human (Shoanti) Skald 7|AC: 20/13/17 (19/12/16 in Raging Song)|HP: 49/52(50/53)|Saves: Fort: +8, Ref: +5, Will: +7 (+10 in Raging Song) (+4 vs. Bardic Performance, Sonic, Language-Dependent, +1 vs Fear)|Init: +6|Perc: +12

Thaddeus

Fiona pulls up a chair and sits down in it, resting her earthbreaker next to the chair.

"...I wanted to ask your opinion on something." She wrinkles her nose and fidgets a bit in her seat. "Namely, *ahem* Calistria's... teachings."

A slight blush appears on her cheeks. "I don't know if I'm entirely comfortable with listening to them any longer... I feel like I'm turning my back on my people the more I use what She teaches."

"I..." She sighs in exasperation. "...I don't know how else to express it, really. Am I?"


1 person marked this as a favorite.
NG Male Human Witch 7 | HP 33/44 | AC 13 (12 Touch, 11 Flat-footed) | CMB +4, CMD 19 | Fort. +6, Ref. +4, Will +7 | Init. +5 | Perc. +8/10 | Speed 30ft | Spells: 1st 5/5, 2nd 3/4, 3rd 3/3, 4th 2/2 | Active conditions: N/A

Fiona and Thaddeus conversation:
Fiona Sun-Touched wrote:

Fiona pulls up a chair and sits down in it, resting her earthbreaker next to the chair.

"...I wanted to ask your opinion on something." She wrinkles her nose and fidgets a bit in her seat. "Namely, *ahem* Calistria's... teachings."

A slight blush appears on her cheeks.

Thaddeus, in slow motion raises an eyebrow and leans back. A bit of colour rises to his cheeks as well.

Fiona Sun-Touched wrote:

"I don't know if I'm entirely comfortable with listening to them any longer... I feel like I'm turning my back on my people the more I use what She teaches."

"I..." She sighs in exasperation. "...I don't know how else to express it, really. Am I?"

"Oh!" Thaddeus shakes his head clear of distracting thoughts. "Sorry, m'mind was goin' in 'tirely different directions, 'deyre. Sorry, sorry."

With such thoughts cleared out, Thaddeus turns back to Fiona, though quickly begins looking around, making odd little gestures and facial expressions. Not out of embarassment, but trying to find the right words himself.

"Well, Ah'll admit Ah'm not sure Ah'm th'guy t'talk to 'bout 'dis. Ah think you've seen how nothin' Calistria does seems t'speak t'me at all. Holdin' grudges is a good way t'get ulcers, bein' stressed all th'time. An' everythin' bout the.... 'pleasures of th'flesh' jus' ain't me. Ah learned a bit since Ah came t'the big city, people are free t'do what 'dey want wit'dere lives, long as it don't hurt nobody. 'Less dey wanna be hurt, but dat's neither here nor dere... Don't mean Ah need t'join in. An' t'be honest, if it weren't fer Variel, Ah'd probably stay th'heck 'way from Calistria. Shorafa's been nothin' but helpful, an' Ah still can't stand th'woman. She offered us a hideout in th'temple, an' Ah still hate goin' 'dere."

"Den again, maybe 'dat's why yer askin' me. Variel's a servant of her, an' Mutt's been thinkin' 'bout things since we talked t'Treeg, back on th'island. Guess you're thinkin' Ah'm the outside perspective. Or yer thinkin' Ah'm a font o' wisdom of th'earth, comin' from farmers. Bit o'advice: Older farmers ain't wise, 'dey're just so set in 'dere ways 'dat 'dey're completley confident in anythin' dey say."

"But, uh, back t'the question. You feel like listenin' t'Calistria's teachin's is disrespectful t'yer clan. Don' know which teachin's, but 'dat ain't none o'my business. My answer?... Well, Ah'll be frank, Ah don' know. Ah could tell you all 'bout magical confluences, 'r the life cycle of th'puzzle shark, but 'dat's knowledge. Life advice ain't my specialty."

"Still, mah first thought is if it's actually as big'a conflict as yeh think. Let me illustrate th'point wit' a little story 'bout mahself. See, yeh may have noticed Ah ain't a big worshipper. Ah still think of myself as a follower of Erastil, but 'dat's more out o'habit. Back at mah home town, we had a preacher of Erastil. Guy hated everythin', said every other god was wicked, 'r sinful, 'r a whole lotta other words. Felt th'same way 'bout everythin' 'dat wasn't farmin' 'r huntin'. Dancin' was sinful. Snoozin' under a tree was idleness. Still, gotta give Preacher Haggler credit, he taught me t'read, which was a very uncommon skill in town. All 'dere was t'read was th' Parables of Erastil, sure, but it did teach me somethin'. See, Ah started t'notice 'dat not everythin' Preacher Haggler said Erastil didn't like was in th'book. Hoo, he sure didn't like me pointin' 'dat out to'em. Taught me 'dat jus'cause a guy says he speaks fer th'god, an' even if he gets power from th'god, don'mean he's the be-all 'n end-all of 'dat god."

"Ah notice 'dis wit' Variel. As Ah said, Ah don'like Calistria, 'n Ah can't stand Shorafa 'r th'temple. But Variel's as trusted a friend as dey come. He may act on behalf of th'church, but he ain't preachy 'bout it, an' he don't 'xactly march lockstep wit' Shorafa. Th'two follow th'same goddess, but 'dey're still different people."

"Finally, jus' cause a god says somethin' yeh agree with, don' mean yeh gotta suddenly start worshippin' 'em. D'yeh think every guy 'dat drinks some ale becomes a devout follower o'Cayden? Does everybody who says a prayer o'er th'dead start worshippin' Pharasma? Does a person gotta convert t'Torag 'fore he starts buildin' somethin'? Point is, is it th'goddess herself yer interested in, or just somethin' she's 'ssociated wit'?"

"Okay, Ah'm jus' ramblin' at dis point. Hopefully somethin' in what Ah said helps yeh out. Failin' anythin' else, get more information. Ah don't know what yer quah's beliefs are, 'r how dey'd inneract wit'the other gods. Maybe 'dat help. Read up on both of 'em. Is there a conflict, 'r could yeh make somethin' outta th'two together?"

Thaddeus finally comes to a stop, looking over at Fiona.

"Did, uh... did anythin' Ah say make sense?"


.

@Mutt - yep!

==========
Mutt and Isadora
==========

She grins wickedly. "I thought you'd never ask."

While being a little reserved and coquettish while in the temple, Isadora proves to be far more extroverted when it comes to a night on the town. After bidding farewell to get prepared, she meets with you at the Lucky Dog wearing a spectacular, if revealing dress.

"So, I have some tastes in where I like to go to have fun, but I'm interested in what the mighty Mutt wants to see in a night out."

============
Kwava
============

Kwava nods to all of you.

"Well, if we are settled then I bid you good luck. I will send a messenger to Crying Leaf to let them know you are arriving. You will not receive a warm welcome by the border guards, but they will know that you are invited by the Shin'Rakorath. The information you have gathered on the drow is some of the most valuable anyone has uncovered in living memory. You are vital to stopping an unknowable menace. Good luck."

I'm going to take it easy with you guys for a few days and start Armageddon Echo formally on Monday. In that time please roleplay amongst each other, do your shopping, and put your feet up. I'll of course respond IC to prompts. Hopefully we'll have a fifth by then, but if not such is life.


Spell Slots: 1st: 3/4; 2nd: 4/4; 3rd: 1/2|Performance Rounds: 21/24|Female Human (Shoanti) Skald 7|AC: 20/13/17 (19/12/16 in Raging Song)|HP: 49/52(50/53)|Saves: Fort: +8, Ref: +5, Will: +7 (+10 in Raging Song) (+4 vs. Bardic Performance, Sonic, Language-Dependent, +1 vs Fear)|Init: +6|Perc: +12
Thaddeus Claville wrote:
** spoiler omitted **...

Thaddeus Conversation:
Fiona listens attentively as Thaddeus goes on, calming down a great deal. "Well, as an outside perspective, you're doing much better than I hoped."

"But... yes. It helped." The shoanti nods and looks over at her hair. "Our traditions vary from quah to quah, but in terms of religion and such... we greatly prefer reverence of the spirits of the animals we share the Plateau with--firepelts, aurochs, hawks, et cetera... and the spirits of those who have come before us--our ancestors, and heroes of great renown."

"Worship of tshamek gods is not unheard of regarding Shoanti who leave their quahs. But those who leave are generally those who found the culture that raised them to be..." She cringes. "...lacking."

She looks up at Thaddeus, her eyes softening as she starts playing with her hair. "You've never met a Shoanti before me, have you?"


NG Male Human Witch 7 | HP 33/44 | AC 13 (12 Touch, 11 Flat-footed) | CMB +4, CMD 19 | Fort. +6, Ref. +4, Will +7 | Init. +5 | Perc. +8/10 | Speed 30ft | Spells: 1st 5/5, 2nd 3/4, 3rd 3/3, 4th 2/2 | Active conditions: N/A

Fiona and Thaddeus:
Fiona wrote:
Fiona listens attentively as Thaddeus goes on, calming down a great deal. "Well, as an outside perspective, you're doing much better than I hoped."

Thaddeus gives a soft exhale of relief that he hadn't stuck his foot in his mouth.

Quote:

"But... yes. It helped." The shoanti nods and looks over at her hair. "Our traditions vary from quah to quah, but in terms of religion and such... we greatly prefer reverence of the spirits of the animals we share the Plateau with--firepelts, aurochs, hawks, et cetera... and the spirits of those who have come before us--our ancestors, and heroes of great renown."

"Worship of tshamek gods is not unheard of regarding Shoanti who leave their quahs. But those who leave are generally those who found the culture that raised them to be..." She cringes. "...lacking."

"So, yer worried 'bout thinkin' yeh find yer people's beliefs lackin', eh? Again, is 'dere a hole 'dat can only be filled by Calistria? Or jus' somethin' yeh wanna do 'dat yer ancestors 'n the animal spirits never outright mentioned? Just 'cause 'dey don' talk 'bout it, don't mean yeh can't do it. Huh, maybe 'dat's where Preacher Haggler got his ideas 'dat everythin' fun was a sin. Erastil didn't say it, so he thought it musn't be good."

Quote:
She looks up at Thaddeus, her eyes softening as she starts playing with her hair. "You've never met a Shoanti before me, have you?"

"Didn't meet a lot o'anybody 'fore. Almost nobody came t'town, not even goblins. Jus' th'ccasional merchant, an' some travellin' bards 'dat claimed t'spread th'news, but Ah'm fairly sure half of'em jus' made stuff up fer a free meal."


Spell Slots: 1st: 3/4; 2nd: 4/4; 3rd: 1/2|Performance Rounds: 21/24|Female Human (Shoanti) Skald 7|AC: 20/13/17 (19/12/16 in Raging Song)|HP: 49/52(50/53)|Saves: Fort: +8, Ref: +5, Will: +7 (+10 in Raging Song) (+4 vs. Bardic Performance, Sonic, Language-Dependent, +1 vs Fear)|Init: +6|Perc: +12

Thaddeus Conversation:
Thaddeus wrote:
"...Again, is 'dere a hole 'dat can only be filled by Calistria?..."

Fiona stifles a snicker and fights the urge to call out Thaddeus on his unintentionally questionable choice of words.

Thaddeus wrote:
"Or jus' somethin' yeh wanna do 'dat yer ancestors 'n the animal spirits never outright mentioned? Just 'cause 'dey don' talk 'bout it, don't mean yeh can't do it."

"Well..." She sighs and shakes her head. "...it's more along the lines of me being worried that my own people will reject me if I choose to indulge in them with a tshamek."

"Ours is a culture that is struggling to survive while surrounded by those who would see us wiped out." She says matter-of-factly. "Even today, quite a few communities of foreigners consider us to be little more than dangerous primitives, with no respect for our traditions."

She pauses, playing with her hair some more.

Thaddeus wrote:
"Didn't meet a lot o'anybody 'fore. Almost nobody came t'town, not even goblins. Jus' th'ccasional merchant, an' some travellin' bards 'dat claimed t'spread th'news, but Ah'm fairly sure half of'em jus' made stuff up fer a free meal."

Fiona nods. "Hmm."

"Well, it'd explain why you never commented on my hair. Or lack of tattoos." She frowns when she mentions her lack of tattoos. "I was supposed to receive one when I completed the Plummet, but the shamans never gave me one. 'Your true rite-of-passage is not yet complete', they said." She grumbles and puts a foot on the head of her earthbreaker. "I thought they still didn't consider me worthy of true adulthood."

"Apparently, they had greater plans for me--namely, sending me on this quest to discover information about the Blot in the sky."


NG Male Human Witch 7 | HP 33/44 | AC 13 (12 Touch, 11 Flat-footed) | CMB +4, CMD 19 | Fort. +6, Ref. +4, Will +7 | Init. +5 | Perc. +8/10 | Speed 30ft | Spells: 1st 5/5, 2nd 3/4, 3rd 3/3, 4th 2/2 | Active conditions: N/A

Fiona and Thaddeus:
Fiona Sun-Touched wrote:

"Well..." She sighs and shakes her head. "...it's more along the lines of me being worried that my own people will reject me if I choose to indulge in them with a tshamek."

"Ours is a culture that is struggling to survive while surrounded by those who would see us wiped out." She says matter-of-factly. "Even today, quite a few communities of foreigners consider us to be little more than dangerous primitives, with no respect for our traditions."

"Ahh, think I getcha now. Yer worried 'dat since th'Shoanti seem t'be dyin' out, 'dat doin' anythin' non-Shoanti would be a betrayl. 'Dat yeh need t'be even more Shoanti 'den ever before, 'r else yer worried dat'll contribute t'the fadin' out o'yer people."

Thaddeus gestures to one book he's reading. "Ah've been readin' up on history a bit, when Ah ain't readin' 'bout magic 'r th'planes. An' one thing Ah've noticed is 'dat nothin' stays th'same. Nations rise 'n fall, Cultures move from one place t'another, 'n take on parts of other cultures in th'move. Small nations band t'gether 'n make big empires, which break up 'n form small nations. 'Dat's jus' history."

"Now, Ah ain't sayin' 'dat th'Shoanti should jus' give up th'ghost. What Ah'm sayin' is yeh may need t'think on if 'dis is a battle yeh kin win. An' if not, maybe pick a different battle. Kin th'Shoanti hold 'dere land 'gainst everyone else? Can diplomacy work? Or maybe th'Shoanti kin change. 'Cause stagnation leads t'rot. If doin' what yer doin' is causin' yer people t'fade out, doin' more of it ain't gonna help."

"What Ah kin say is learn as much as yeh can 'bout yer people, yer customs, your history. 'Den write it down, 'n tell people 'bout it. Record it. 'Cause as long as somebody knows 'bout it, will it ever really die?"

"Learn more 'bout things other 'den Shoanti culture, 's well. Knowledge is power, y'know. Jus' knowin' things ain't bad. Listen t'more of Calistria's edicts. Research other gods. See how other people live. Maybe yeh learn somethin' 'dat'll help out yer quah. A small change now may make th'difference in th'future. Adapt an' grow. Will keepin' true t'the old Shoanti ways help if th'end result is no more Shoanti?"

Quote:
"Well, it'd explain why you never commented on my hair. Or lack of tattoos."

"Yer hair? What 'bout it? Some ritual haircut Shoanti 'r suppos'd t'have? Either way, not any o'my business what somebody decides t'look like."

Quote:

"I was supposed to receive one when I completed the Plummet, but the shamans never gave me one. 'Your true rite-of-passage is not yet complete', they said." She grumbles and puts a foot on the head of her earthbreaker. "I thought they still didn't consider me worthy of true adulthood."

"Apparently, they had greater plans for me--namely, sending me on this quest to discover information about the Blot in the sky."

"Huh. Well, Ah ain't yer elders, so no idea what 'dey were thinkin'. Ah can't say if'n yer elders knew 'dat somethin' big was gonna happen, but 'dey sure made th'right choice, it seems. Maybe 'dey wanted yeh t'learn more 'bout th'outside world. 'Dey sent one o'the most charmin' 'n personable people t'inneract wit' the people o'Riddleport, but one still young 'n still learnin' bout things, rather 'den somebody more experienced. Is 'dere a reason for 'dat? Ah don't know, but it seems a safe bet."


Male Human (Varisian/Shoanti) Bloodrager (primalist) 7 | AC 17 T 11 FF 17 | Damage Reduction 1/- | HP 68/72 | F +8 R +2 W +4 (+1 morale bonus to all saves vs fear) | Init +4 | Perc +11

======
The Cypher Lodge
======

Mutt is struggling to find the funds to get his greataxe enchanted further. However, Thaddeus seems to have been expecting this and hands 100 gold pieces to Mutt. Surprised, Mutt simply says, "Oh.. uh... Thank you, Thaddeus." He then pays the mage to enchant his greataxe with bane (elf).

GM SpiderBeard wrote:
"Say, 'veryone. Got tents, food, 'n bedrolls? Sounds like we may be campin' a few nights unner th'stars."

Mutt checks his gear. "Well, I got 5 days worth of trail rations and a bedroll from Grunyn. That's it for travel gear."

GM SpiderBeard wrote:

She grins wickedly. "I thought you'd never ask."

While being a little reserved and coquettish while in the temple, Isadora proves to be far more extroverted when it comes to a night on the town. After bidding farewell to get prepared, she meets with you at the Lucky Dog wearing a spectacular, if revealing dress.

"So, I have some tastes in where I like to go to have fun, but I'm interested in what the mighty Mutt wants to see in a night out."

Mutt bids farewell and goes to the Lucky Dog to get ready for his night out with Isadora. As he gets ready, he approaches Michal. "Hey, Michal. Listen, I was just wondering if you had any... problems with me dating your cousin."

When Isadora arrives, the warrior's face turns red as he sees her revealing dress. At her question, Mutt says, "Well, I was thinking that we could take a walk down at the docks or maybe look at the Cyphergate up close. Maybe watch the sunset. Maybe go to the Free-Coin District." He sighs and rubs the back of his neck. "Sorry. Despite living in the city for a few months, I really am not sure where to go and I've never really done this 'dating' thing before. I would have suggested we take in a fight at the arena; but I don't think you would have liked that. Trying to think of things that the both of us would enjoy."

GM SpiderBeard wrote:

Kwava nods to all of you.

"Well, if we are settled then I bid you good luck. I will send a messenger to Crying Leaf to let them know you are arriving. You will not receive a warm welcome by the border guards, but they will know that you are invited by the Shin'Rakorath. The information you have gathered on the drow is some of the most valuable anyone has uncovered in living memory. You are vital to stopping an unknowable menace. Good luck."

Mutt nods at Kwava. "Thanks, Kwava. You've been very helpful."


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NG Male Human Witch 7 | HP 33/44 | AC 13 (12 Touch, 11 Flat-footed) | CMB +4, CMD 19 | Fort. +6, Ref. +4, Will +7 | Init. +5 | Perc. +8/10 | Speed 30ft | Spells: 1st 5/5, 2nd 3/4, 3rd 3/3, 4th 2/2 | Active conditions: N/A

If I may, Mutt? Hopefully this won't step on your toes any. If so, by all means disregard.

Thaddeus was wandering the halls of the Cypherlodge on business, when he sees Mutt looking upset, and counting his gold.

"Somethin' wrong, Mutt?"

Mutt explains that he was hoping to get his weapon enchanted, but is just a little short on funds.

"How short we talkin' here?"

Thaddeus immediately smiles and exhales in dismissal as he hears that, and then starts digging in one of the side pouches of his enchanted backpack.

"'Dat all? Hell, I kin spot'cha th'gold yeh need. Been savin' mine 'fer bigger purchases. Yeh said 49 gold? Here, have a hunnred, give yeh some pocket change, 'specially if we're headin' out soon. Stock up on provisions, 'n what-not."

Mutt wrote:
"Oh.. uh... Thank you, Thaddeus."

"Pay back when yeh can, Ah know yer an honest man. An' sides, consider it an investment on mah part. Better yeh are at killin' things, th'less danger we'll all be in, y'know?"

GM Question:
I asked Marra how much, if any, gold she'd like to help get the Lucky Dog up and going and running smoothly. A way in-game to ask about how much gold I should put into it. Just wondering what the answer was.


Spell Slots: 1st: 3/4; 2nd: 4/4; 3rd: 1/2|Performance Rounds: 21/24|Female Human (Shoanti) Skald 7|AC: 20/13/17 (19/12/16 in Raging Song)|HP: 49/52(50/53)|Saves: Fort: +8, Ref: +5, Will: +7 (+10 in Raging Song) (+4 vs. Bardic Performance, Sonic, Language-Dependent, +1 vs Fear)|Init: +6|Perc: +12

Thaddeus Conversation:
Fiona nods in understanding as Thaddeus speaks. "Indeed, diplomacy would be the most appealing option. But, that's easier said than done, with some of our quahs." She wrinkles her nose. "The thought of collecting our lore in one book sounds quite appealing, however."

Thaddeus wrote:
"Yer hair? What 'bout it? Some ritual haircut Shoanti 'r suppos'd t'have? Either way, not any o'my business what somebody decides t'look like."

Fiona nods... and blushes a bit. "It's a tradition for braves to shave their heads, to deny our enemies an easy thing to grab. But there's another reason some braves keep their hair."

She's starting to look oddly embarrassed. "It wasn't until I was older that I learned of it--some young Shoanti choose not to cut their hair as a sign... well, that they're not *ahem* bound to another."

"And that they seek a companion."

Thaddeus wrote:
"Huh. Well, Ah ain't yer elders, so no idea what 'dey were thinkin'. Ah can't say if'n yer elders knew 'dat somethin' big was gonna happen, but 'dey sure made th'right choice, it seems. Maybe 'dey wanted yeh t'learn more 'bout th'outside world. 'Dey sent one o'the most charmin' 'n personable people t'inneract wit' the people o'Riddleport, but one still young 'n still learnin' bout things, rather 'den somebody more experienced. Is 'dere a reason for 'dat? Ah don't know, but it seems a safe bet."

Fiona giggles. "Oh, Thaddeus, you charmer."


.

========
Mutt
========

Isadora laughs and takes you by the hand before leading you out into the city. You indeed head over to the Cyphergate, the site of your climactic battle with Depora, the drow who had been mining the Cyphergate. With some effort, the two of you climb up partway to enjoy the view of the ocean and Riddleport behind it. The chaos of the near-lawless, ramshackle city is apparent even from above. Several landmarks you've visited are easily spotted from this high vantage point, and here you realize it may be the last time you see Riddleport for a while.

Isadora points over at the arena. "Let's go there. Someone managed to get its owner sent to Korvosa on murder charges and I want to see how it's being run now. Also, I don't think anyone will try to kill you there now. So that's an improvement."

Zincher's arena is a magnificent affair, possibly the largest building in Korvosa. You notice you get a few pointed stares as you head in, but you are otherwise unmolested. Isadora manages to get fantastic seats after a few select whispers to the right people, and you're treated to an evening of spectacular bloody combat.

"I was hoping we'd get to see a duel, but those are so rare. Everyone just sends poisoners now. Boring! The last one was when some wizard was denied entry to the Cypherlodge - he challenged Elias Tammerhawk to a duel! It went badly, poor bastard was eaten alive by a swarm of rats."

The final fight of the evening is a group of indebted gamblers fighting to pay off their debts against a chained manticore. Isadora screams and ducks as a stray spike flies into the crowd near her. In the end, the gamblers are victorious as they surround the creature and manage to cut off its tail to thunderous cheers from the crowd.


NG Male Human Witch 7 | HP 33/44 | AC 13 (12 Touch, 11 Flat-footed) | CMB +4, CMD 19 | Fort. +6, Ref. +4, Will +7 | Init. +5 | Perc. +8/10 | Speed 30ft | Spells: 1st 5/5, 2nd 3/4, 3rd 3/3, 4th 2/2 | Active conditions: N/A

Fiona and Thaddeus:
Fiona Sun-Touched wrote:
Fiona nods in understanding as Thaddeus speaks. "Indeed, diplomacy would be the most appealing option. But, that's easier said than done, with some of our quahs." She wrinkles her nose. "The thought of collecting our lore in one book sounds quite appealing, however."

"Like Ah said, pick a fight y'know yeh kin win. Maybe y'can't save every Shoanti still livin' th'Shoanti way, but maybe yeh can preserve yer quah. If everyone else don't wanna get 'long, well, 'dat's dey're problem, now, issnt it?"

Fiona Sun-Touched wrote:

Fiona nods... and blushes a bit. "It's a tradition for braves to shave their heads, to deny our enemies an easy thing to grab. But there's another reason some braves keep their hair."

She's starting to look oddly embarrassed. "It wasn't until I was older that I learned of it--some young Shoanti choose not to cut their hair as a sign... well, that they're not *ahem* bound to another."

"And that they seek a companion."

"Well, gotta admit, 'dat certainly would make courtship a little easier, knowin' who'se 'vailable."

Fiona Sun-Touched wrote:
Fiona giggles. "Oh, Thaddeus, you charmer."

Thaddeus blushes slightly, rubbing his cheekbones with his hands in a poor attempt to cover it. "Eeh, maybe Ah am layin' it on a bit thick. Ah'm guessin' yeh don't mean some new spells Ah've been learnin'."

I don't know if Fiona is outright flirting with Thaddeus, which is fitting, so I can play Thaddeus as completely clueless himself. Let's see... Yep, no ranks in Sense Motive.


Spell Slots: 1st: 3/4; 2nd: 4/4; 3rd: 1/2|Performance Rounds: 21/24|Female Human (Shoanti) Skald 7|AC: 20/13/17 (19/12/16 in Raging Song)|HP: 49/52(50/53)|Saves: Fort: +8, Ref: +5, Will: +7 (+10 in Raging Song) (+4 vs. Bardic Performance, Sonic, Language-Dependent, +1 vs Fear)|Init: +6|Perc: +12

Thaddeus Conversation:
Thaddeus wrote:
"Like Ah said, pick a fight y'know yeh kin win. Maybe y'can't save every Shoanti still livin' th'Shoanti way, but maybe yeh can preserve yer quah. If everyone else don't wanna get 'long, well, 'dat's dey're problem, now, issnt it?"

Fiona nods again.

So, the Sklar-Quah's right out then. A pity--they're some of our best warriors. Hopefully, the other quahs will be more inclined to listen...

Thaddeus wrote:
"Eeh, maybe Ah am layin' it on a bit thick. Ah'm guessin' yeh don't mean some new spells Ah've been learnin'."

The thundercaller shakes her head. "No, I didn't."

Hmm... maybe...? ...oh, why not.

"But the topic of new spells does interest me." She leans forward and lets go of her earthbreaker, letting its handle rest against her chair. "Maybe we could have a chat about them over dinner?"


NG Male Human Witch 7 | HP 33/44 | AC 13 (12 Touch, 11 Flat-footed) | CMB +4, CMD 19 | Fort. +6, Ref. +4, Will +7 | Init. +5 | Perc. +8/10 | Speed 30ft | Spells: 1st 5/5, 2nd 3/4, 3rd 3/3, 4th 2/2 | Active conditions: N/A

Fiona and Thaddeus:
Quote:
Fiona nods again.

"Course, like Ah said 'fore, Ah ain't really a people person. 'Dem's just mah thoughts based on history 'n what seems t'make sense tryin' t'pply a little logic. But people ain't logical. 'N dat's both a good thing 'n a bad thing. So, uh, no promises 'bout any o'dat. 'Cept th'writin' down history. 'Dat's a good idea."

Fiona wrote:
"But the topic of new spells does interest me." She leans forward and lets go of her earthbreaker, letting its handle rest against her chair. "Maybe we could have a chat about them over dinner?"

Thaddeus raises an eyebrow.

"Uh, sure, Ah guess? Ah mean, Ah kin tell yeh what Ah know 'bout magical theory 'n ley line convergence, but, ah, Ah don't think we kin learn spells from each other. Kinda incompatible methods. Yer magic comes from yer music, an' mine comes from..."

Thaddeus pauses, looking down in confusion, unsure how to proceed.

"Eeehh.... Still tryin' t'figure 'dat out."

Thaddeus looks a little sheepish, scratching the back of his head.


Spell Slots: 1st: 3/4; 2nd: 4/4; 3rd: 1/2|Performance Rounds: 21/24|Female Human (Shoanti) Skald 7|AC: 20/13/17 (19/12/16 in Raging Song)|HP: 49/52(50/53)|Saves: Fort: +8, Ref: +5, Will: +7 (+10 in Raging Song) (+4 vs. Bardic Performance, Sonic, Language-Dependent, +1 vs Fear)|Init: +6|Perc: +12

Thaddeus Conversation:
Thaddeus wrote:
"Uh, sure, Ah guess? Ah mean, Ah kin tell yeh what Ah know 'bout magical theory 'n ley line convergence, but, ah, Ah don't think we kin learn spells from each other. Kinda incompatible methods. Yer magic comes from yer music, an' mine comes from... eeehh.... Still tryin' t'figure 'dat out."

Fiona shakes her head. "That won't be a problem."

You don't know where your magic comes from? Hmm. Curious.

"If we're going to embark on an important mission that'll take us away from Riddleport... well, I feel like I'd rather spend some time with someone I like. To unwind before a long journey."


NG Male Human Witch 7 | HP 33/44 | AC 13 (12 Touch, 11 Flat-footed) | CMB +4, CMD 19 | Fort. +6, Ref. +4, Will +7 | Init. +5 | Perc. +8/10 | Speed 30ft | Spells: 1st 5/5, 2nd 3/4, 3rd 3/3, 4th 2/2 | Active conditions: N/A

Fiona and Thaddeus:
Fiona wrote:
Fiona shakes her head. "That won't be a problem. If we're going to embark on an important mission that'll take us away from Riddleport... well, I feel like I'd rather spend some time with someone I like. To unwind before a long journey."

"Unwind wit' a pal? Sure. 'Nless yeh had a particular place in mind, Ah know 'dis one place Ah've been wantin' t'try out. Quiet tavern wit' good food, heard 'bout it from some o'th' Cyphermages. Fairly quiet 'n comfy chairs, good place to hold conversations. 'Dey even have debate nights on occasions."


Male Human (Varisian/Shoanti) Bloodrager (primalist) 7 | AC 17 T 11 FF 17 | Damage Reduction 1/- | HP 68/72 | F +8 R +2 W +4 (+1 morale bonus to all saves vs fear) | Init +4 | Perc +11
GM SpiderBeard wrote:
Isadora laughs and takes you by the hand before leading you out into the city. You indeed head over to the Cyphergate, the site of your climactic battle with Depora, the drow who had been mining the Cyphergate. With some effort, the two of you climb up partway to enjoy the view of the ocean and Riddleport behind it. The chaos of the near-lawless, ramshackle city is apparent even from above. Several landmarks you've visited are easily spotted from this high vantage point, and here you realize it may be the last time you see Riddleport for a while.

Mutt follows Isadora as she leads. As they approach the Cyphergate, Mutt tells her of their battle with Depora (including Thaddeus dealing the finishing blow). When Isadora expresses interest in climbing the arch, Mutt aids her, making sure she doesn't fall. As they look over the city, it finally sinks in that Mutt’s going to be gone… for who knows how long.

GM SpiderBeard wrote:
Isadora points over at the arena. "Let's go there. Someone managed to get its owner sent to Korvosa on murder charges and I want to see how it's being run now. Also, I don't think anyone will try to kill you there now. So that's an improvement.”

Mutt smirks. ”Well, it looks like that someone did a good thing in removing him. And no one could try to kill me. They know what would happen if they tried to kill me or hurt you.” Mutt helps Isadora down from the Cyphergate and walks with her to the arena.

GM SpiderBeard wrote:
Zincher's arena is a magnificent affair, possibly the largest building in Riddleport. You notice you get a few pointed stares as you head in, but you are otherwise unmolested. Isadora manages to get fantastic seats after a few select whispers to the right people, and you're treated to an evening of spectacular bloody combat.

Mutt glares at those who stare at them. When Isadora gets them really good seats, Mutt smiles and thanks her. He’s really excited to see this.

GM SpiderBeard wrote:
"I was hoping we'd get to see a duel, but those are so rare. Everyone just sends poisoners now. Boring! The last one was when some wizard was denied entry to the Cypherlodge - he challenged Elias Tammerhawk to a duel! It went badly, poor bastard was eaten alive by a swarm of rats.”

Mutt snorts. ”Well, I wish I saw that fight. I assume it was rather one-sided given Tammerhawk’s skill and position. But, they really should get better fighters in there.”

GM SpiderBeard wrote:
The final fight of the evening is a group of indebted gamblers fighting to pay off their debts against a chained manticore. Isadora screams and ducks as a stray spike flies into the crowd near her. In the end, the gamblers are victorious as they surround the creature and manage to cut off its tail to thunderous cheers from the crowd.

Mutt cheers with the crowd for the fight. When Isadora’s nearly hit by the spike, Mutt bring her close and keeps watch, his instincts kicking in. He looks at his girlfriend. ”Are you alright?”

When the gamblers prove themselves victorious, Mutt cheers loudly. He turns to Isadora. ”Are you having a good time so far?”


.

Mutt:

Unfortunately going to have to button this section off as we move into the next chapter. Feel free to wrap things up in your response.

"I love it! The closeness to death, the thrill of battle... it's exhilarating."

With the battles done, Isadora sweeps you from the temple into the streets as the revelers pile on, singing, dancing, and fighting amongst themselves. Street vendors sell skewers of meat grilled over wood along with cups of strong spiced liquor. Isadora leads you through the streets northwards, back towards the House of the Silken Veil and its intimacies. As she leads you in, she looks to you keenly, hesitating a moment.

"You know one of the things we are told in temple all the time... 'love the food, not the chef'. Shorafa demands that our attachments be fleeting - and that to indulge in just one person, let alone to love, is to an insult to the goddess' bounty. I will see you as much as I am able... but understand that this is what you get, present and future. Does that make sense?"

You can end this as you so wish as we're leaving Riddleport.

============
The Armageddon Echo, Part One: The Path Into Peril
============

After you have finished equipping yourselves, you set off on the road to Crying Leaf, the elven settlement where you are to meet with contacts established by Kwava.

The lands north of Riddleport are sparsely populated, with a few struggling farms near the city and the occasional hunter’s lodge further afield. A winding dirt road that quickly becomes a Varisian caravan path leads north from Riddleport, a route only infrequently used by travelers making their way between Varisia and the Lands of the Linnorm Kings.

This road follows the Velashu River for much of its length, rarely veering away from its winding course to reduce travel time. The route to Crying Leaf follows this road until the Calphiak Mountains recede to the west. About 45 miles north of Riddleport, a hunter’s trail branches off to the west—it is this road that leads to the rim of the Mierani Forest and the settlement of Crying Leaf.

The journey is roughly 90 miles, and should take around 4 days, 3 days if you choose to travel on horseback. Although open country is an option, the terrain is difficult enough that it is unlikely to save you time.

The first two days of travel pass uneventfully. The third day is a crisp, bright summer morning, the heat of the sun abated somewhat by a good wind.

Perception DC 15:

You see a cloud of dust approaching you from down the road.

Perception DC 20:

Within the cloud of dust you see several horsemen, at least ten.


CN Male Elf Inquisitor of Calistria 7 | HP 28/40 | AC 19 (T 12 F 18) | CMB +9, CMD 21 | F +6 R +4 W +9 | Init. +4 | Percep +15, Sense Motive +16 | Speed 30ft | Judgment: 3 | Conditions: -

SOP, taking 10 for 25 Perception.

Variel's elven eyes make out a cloud of dust in the distance. He squints a bit, then says, "There are nearly a dozen horsemen approaching. We should move to the side to let them pass. Lash, get a look from above?"

Assuming there is a side to move to, Variel does so. Lash changes form into a raven to be less conspicuous, then flies off at an angle, making use of any available trees for cover, taking 10 for 23 Perception and 30 Stealth as he gets closer.


Spell Slots: 1st: 3/4; 2nd: 4/4; 3rd: 1/2|Performance Rounds: 21/24|Female Human (Shoanti) Skald 7|AC: 20/13/17 (19/12/16 in Raging Song)|HP: 49/52(50/53)|Saves: Fort: +8, Ref: +5, Will: +7 (+10 in Raging Song) (+4 vs. Bardic Performance, Sonic, Language-Dependent, +1 vs Fear)|Init: +6|Perc: +12

Thaddeus Conversation:
Fiona leans closer to the country boy and grins. "I'd like that. I'd like that a lot."

On The Road

Fiona stiffens and starts moving to the side of the road. "Do they bear any tattoos or such?"


NG Male Human Witch 7 | HP 33/44 | AC 13 (12 Touch, 11 Flat-footed) | CMB +4, CMD 19 | Fort. +6, Ref. +4, Will +7 | Init. +5 | Perc. +8/10 | Speed 30ft | Spells: 1st 5/5, 2nd 3/4, 3rd 3/3, 4th 2/2 | Active conditions: N/A

Fiona and Thaddeus:
Fiona wrote:
Fiona leans closer to the country boy and grins. "I'd like that. I'd like that a lot."

Thaddeus leans back at Fiona's advance, looking confused. "Ahh... good t'know?"

Later...

Given the somewhat more dignified nature of the Sage's Study, Thaddeus puts in a bit of effort, wearing cleaner clothes that don't look like they've been worn for a year while doing field work.

As for dinner conversation, Thaddeus goes no farther than what Fiona had initially suggested (Missing any cues, if any were intended) and discusses thaumaturgical theories and various bits of knowledge and trivia he's found while studying at the Cyphermage's lodge. Thaddeus is not overly used to having somebody to talk to about such things, and ends up chattering for quite a while in his country accent.

Though after some time, he does stop. "Ah, pardon me, Ah'm jus' goin' on wit'out lettin' yeh talk. Any questions? Or got yer own theories? Maybe a bit on how yer music makes magic, if'n yeh got any thoughts on 'dat?"

========

On the road...

Perception: 1d20 + 10 ⇒ (7) + 10 = 17

Thaddeus peers at the cloud, but can't make out anything. Fortunately, Variel's keen elven eyes pinpoint what they're looking at.

"Horsemen, eh? Hmm, Who could 'dat be?"

Can I make a Knowledge (Geography) check to make a guess as to who horsemen on the road could be, given our current location? If so...

Knowledge Roll:
Knowledge(Geography): 1d20 + 5 ⇒ (10) + 5 = 15


.

The group looks into the cloud of approaching horsemen. While Fiona expects Shoanti, Thaddeus picks them up as something a little distinct, considering where they are in the Velashu Uplands.

They are the Velashu Horse Lords, which Thaddeus recalls are Ulfen explorers who abandoned their homelands to the north, and over generations mixed with Shoanti. They are informally known as the "Eighth Quah" - although it would be ill advised to say that in front of a Shoanti.

Although they have a reputation for being fierce and warlike, they are also not known for banditry.

Lash flies up into the air, and quickly returns to report that although they are very intentionally heading for you, they do not have weapons drawn.


CN Male Elf Inquisitor of Calistria 7 | HP 28/40 | AC 19 (T 12 F 18) | CMB +9, CMD 21 | F +6 R +4 W +9 | Init. +4 | Percep +15, Sense Motive +16 | Speed 30ft | Judgment: 3 | Conditions: -

Variel rests his shield on the ground and leaves his own weapons in their places, then stands to the side of the road and awaits the arrival of the horsemen. From Thaddeus' description of who they are likely to be, he tries to recall an appropriate greeting. Knowledge (local): 1d20 + 7 ⇒ (12) + 7 = 19

When they arrive, he nods and greets them in Common.


Male Human (Varisian/Shoanti) Bloodrager (primalist) 7 | AC 17 T 11 FF 17 | Damage Reduction 1/- | HP 68/72 | F +8 R +2 W +4 (+1 morale bonus to all saves vs fear) | Init +4 | Perc +11

Isadora:
Mutt smiles at Isadora as they walk the streets. He partakes in some of the food. When they arrive back at the House of the Silken Veil, he says, "I had a really good time tonight, Isadora."

When Isadora tells him that this is all their relationship will be, Mutt frowns. He's not angry. He's just... saddened. "Well... s**t. I thought that our relationship could go further. I really don't like that. I do somewhat understand. However, I don't really like it. But, I don't want to go against your faith. So for now... I guess this works for me."

======
The Road
======

With his greataxe enchanted further and purchasing a tent, Mutt says goodbye to his men, hugs his dog, and stops by the House of the Silken Veil to say goodbye to Isadora. During the trip, Mutt seems to be moving a bit slower than normal. No doubt by the weight of the gear.

During this trip, Mutt seems to be a bit grumpier and a bit unfocused during this trip.

By the third day, when Variel spots the riders, Mutt grips his greataxe in instinct. However, Thaddeus explains who they are, Mutt lets go his weapon. He follows Variel's lead, standing off on the side of the road and crossing his arms, waiting for them.


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NG Male Human Witch 7 | HP 33/44 | AC 13 (12 Touch, 11 Flat-footed) | CMB +4, CMD 19 | Fort. +6, Ref. +4, Will +7 | Init. +5 | Perc. +8/10 | Speed 30ft | Spells: 1st 5/5, 2nd 3/4, 3rd 3/3, 4th 2/2 | Active conditions: N/A

Thaddeus looks askew at Lash.

"So yer familiar flies, talks, AND can change shape? What t'heck are they makin' familiars from 'dese days? Mine eats, poops, 'n makes noise."

"BAAAHHH!"

"'Dat is not a special power, smartass!"

Before they arrive, Thaddeus casts Mage Armour on himself for a bit of added defense.


.

The cloud of dust dissipates as the riders at its head slow to a canter. They are barbarians by their dress, bearing distinctive patterns of war paint on their faces and shoulders, marks repeated in the same dark colour on their mounts. They are twelve in number, although they are followed by a train of two dozen additional horses. As they pull to a stop, they hold up their right hands, showing they brandish no weapons.

The leader of the group, a tall, sun-tanned man with dusty black hair urges his mount forward a few steps before speaking.

"Strange days are these when stars fall from the sky and the walled-folk wander the plains of the Velashan. I am Windbraid. What brings you here?"


CN Male Elf Inquisitor of Calistria 7 | HP 28/40 | AC 19 (T 12 F 18) | CMB +9, CMD 21 | F +6 R +4 W +9 | Init. +4 | Percep +15, Sense Motive +16 | Speed 30ft | Judgment: 3 | Conditions: -

"I am called Variel, and these are my companions: Fiona, Mutt, and Thaddeus. We travel from Riddleport toward the Mierani forest, where I hope to meet with my kinsmen who patrol there. What news of the road ahead of us can you share?"


Male Human (Varisian/Shoanti) Bloodrager (primalist) 7 | AC 17 T 11 FF 17 | Damage Reduction 1/- | HP 68/72 | F +8 R +2 W +4 (+1 morale bonus to all saves vs fear) | Init +4 | Perc +11

Mutt watches as the horsemen approach. As Variel and the head Velashan speak, Mutt looks at the other riders. He's impressed by their gear. He asks the head Velashan, "I'm curious about your people. Are you all warriors? Do you have any settlements nearby?"

Diplomacy: 1d20 + 2 ⇒ (8) + 2 = 10

He also looks at the horses. When he has the opportunity, Mutt approaches one of them.

Handle Animal: 1d20 + 9 ⇒ (5) + 9 = 14

So, three days travel so far. Does that mean I remove three days of trail rations from my sheet?


Spell Slots: 1st: 3/4; 2nd: 4/4; 3rd: 1/2|Performance Rounds: 21/24|Female Human (Shoanti) Skald 7|AC: 20/13/17 (19/12/16 in Raging Song)|HP: 49/52(50/53)|Saves: Fort: +8, Ref: +5, Will: +7 (+10 in Raging Song) (+4 vs. Bardic Performance, Sonic, Language-Dependent, +1 vs Fear)|Init: +6|Perc: +12

Thaddeus:
Fiona makes sure to wear her slinky red dress with elbow-length gloves in preparation for the trip to the Sage's Study. She makes sure it's as clean as possible.

The Sage's Study is about as quiet as Fiona expected--a fact she feels more appreciative of as of late. Compared to the general hectic carnage of battle, it feels like a welcome change of pace.

Their dinner conversation is quite engaging, as one-sided as it is. Listening to Thaddeus ramble on about the finer points of magical theory feels like a refreshing change, compared to negotiating with ruthless pirates or playing on an overworked, underpaid guard's desires & insecurities, even if most of what he's saying goes right over her head.

Thaddeus wrote:
"Ah, pardon me, Ah'm jus' goin' on wit'out lettin' yeh talk. Any questions? Or got yer own theories? Maybe a bit on how yer music makes magic, if'n yeh got any thoughts on 'dat?"

Fiona blinks. "Oh. Right, yes. It's no trouble at all."

"My own magic has roots in bardic traditions--both Shoanti and tsha--" She interrupts herself and clears her throat. "--outsiders. Our magic, no matter what form it takes, is a gift granted unto us by our ancestors and the spirits we revere. Some, like shamans, form a pact with a spirit of the land or such to allow them to wield it. Others, like myself, take up the path of the thundercaller."

"Thundercallers are... well, they're the storytellers and performers of our people, ones who educate the young in the lessons of ages past--the history of our quahs, the many trials we have suffered to carve our own place in the world, and how to survive in it." She takes a sip of wine. "A thundercaller's magic does not come from a spirit..." Her expression turns pensive. "...rather, our battle songs and stories serve as conduits through which our magic flows."


-------------
On the Road

Fiona purses her lips and keeps quiet. Variel seemed to have this well in hand.

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