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Have Scales- Will Travel

Game Master Mowque


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Radripal, City of Arches.

A growing trade city, split in half by the Matwa River. A new city, only a few centuries old, it is built on the richest silver mine in Vudra, converting that mineral into wealth and power.

The city is cut into two halves by the deep, strong river. Ont he west shore, the cliff over the river is a high, sheer wall frowning down at the turbulent water below. Ever been to Niagara falls? It is like that.

Built on this rise is the elegant and refined High Bluff, the rich part of the city. Huge palaces, homes to nobles and merchant princes dot the hillside. Domes, towers, curved porticoes sweep around the winding contours. Proud civic buildings, jeweled pagodas, slender silver arches, all for the enjoyment and appreciation by the rich.

Annoying, there is no map online. The one is the book is simple, but useful

The other side of the river is the Silver Shore, were everyone else lives. The lower castes, the mine workers, the poorer artisans, all live here. Here the shoe slope is less, allowing easy access to the water, bringing in the trade the city so desperately needs. Slums and tenements fill the city blocks. While the massive silver mine on the edge of the city (just east of Silver Shore) provides an endless supply of wealth, very little gets into the hands of the actual workers.

Connecting the two halves is the great Archwalk, a huge natural bridge of stone connecting the two shores. Half a mile wide and hundreds of feet across, it is the only way to cross the river. Arching high over the water, it is home to a constant bazzar of huge proportions. Anything and everything is sold here, with special care given to the silver trades.

Ashlion is on the set of docks on the Silver Shore, the only place outsiders ever arrive. Rumors of great libraries and old knowledge have brought him here. Also, anyone seeking to head north must pass through the city.

Ball is in your court

Image of City!

Grand Lodge

Mindblade 6/DD 2 HP: 50/50; AC:20(24) FF:18(22) T:13; F:+9 R:+7 W+8; Init +2, Perc +13(15), Concentration: +12 {+16 defensive cast}
Magic:
PP: (5)7/7 Lvl 1: 4/5, Lvl 2: 4/4, Lvl 3: 1/2
Lisk:
25/25, AC 22 (18), T: 16 (12), FF: 18 (16) | F +4, R +6, W +5 | Improved Evasion. Immune: Sleep, Paralysis. SR: 13. | Perc +8 | Greater Invis 2/3, Lvl 1: 6/6

Gods above Lisk this place is impossible! Ashlion has rarely been more glad that his familiar doesn't speak, it saves him from sounding like a wet behind the ears tourist as well as looking like one. The Archwalk alone is higher than the spires of the Great Temple and Ashlion had never seen a bigger building than the Temple.

Its not so impressive from the air. Lisk responds, particularly the 'Silver' shore. Disdain drips from every word the small dragon projects. As a silver dragon himself Lisk, quite obviously deems the name an insult. What kind of people give their area a name like that and then pack all the dross of the city in there?It's where all the people are though - not that you'll find any of those libraries you like so much there.

Ashlion rolls his eyes gently. Lisk is just as intellectual as he is, although the little dragon hates to be reminded of that fact. Standing still in the crowd is making him stand out as the tide of humanity moves around him. It's instinct, deep and primal, that has Ashlion spin on his heel - coming face to face with a short man wielding a long knife. The ferocious expression on Ashlion's face, wickedly pointed teeth bared and the arching spine of the dragon on his shoulder has the man running swiftly through the crowd. I keep forgetting that. Your new fangs are a sign of your heritage, not something to be ashamed of! Lisk is back in full teacher mode, disapproving teacher mode.

Allowing the crowd to sweep him along Ashlion keeps his eyes and ears open. He's hoping to pick up information, either of the written and aural sort. Gradually he climbs higher and higher within the city, heading for the great bustling heart of the city - the Archwalk. As they arrive Lisk slips under Ashlion's tunic, rematerialising as a cobalt blue dagger on his belt. Approaching a small group of men who seem to be eating lunch Ashlion nods politely. "Greetings gentlemen. Would you be willing to tell a stranger more of this city?"

Gather Info: 1d20 + 11 ⇒ (10) + 11 = 21


No complaining, just figured we can talk about this now. Can I control all the NPCs? I liked the little moment with the pitpocket, but there may be plot reasons for why Aslion is or is not attacked. I'd like to control those. I promise to give you plenty of moments to show off!

Example, at the end you say 'Approaching a small group of men who seem to be eating lunch'. In the future can you phrase it more like 'Ashlion looks for men at ease, eating lunch' or something, so I can describe what you find? Perhaps their is an excellent reason why there are no lunch men to be found? Again, not trying to be a jerk or a railroader, just how I prefer things. all right?

That said, I like that you had Ashlion intimidated by everything. Too often characters never get surprised or impressed...

The sights, sounds and smells of the great Archwalk bazaar surround Ashlion. The tangy scent of incense and spices fill the air, the shouting of shopkeeps and merchants echo loudly. Street performers from snake-charmers to rope-climbing men fill every nook and cranny. Even when Ashlion can see past the crowded buildings and shops, the view is astounding, looking down hundreds of feet into the swirling river below. Barges and ships look like toys on the distant current.

In the press, it doesn't take long for Ashlion to find some men at ease though, besides a large merchant's shop selling jewelry.

The men looks up from their game of chess. Apparently it was a heated contest, and Ashlion can see a few copper marks placed in wagers by the board.

They seem friendly enough, and one of them, a fatter, heavier man says, 'What would you like to know, stranger?" his tone is light but slightly guarded.

Grand Lodge

Mindblade 6/DD 2 HP: 50/50; AC:20(24) FF:18(22) T:13; F:+9 R:+7 W+8; Init +2, Perc +13(15), Concentration: +12 {+16 defensive cast}
Magic:
PP: (5)7/7 Lvl 1: 4/5, Lvl 2: 4/4, Lvl 3: 1/2
Lisk:
25/25, AC 22 (18), T: 16 (12), FF: 18 (16) | F +4, R +6, W +5 | Improved Evasion. Immune: Sleep, Paralysis. SR: 13. | Perc +8 | Greater Invis 2/3, Lvl 1: 6/6

Sorry - I find it hard to make one character interesting for long periods like that without having them actually DO things. I'll give it my best shot! :) and now you put a chess game in front of me... Ash could be here a while!

Ashlion takes a moment longer than he should to respond, his mind drawn immediately to the board and the unfolding game. "My apologies, it is far too long since I have seen a good match in the Game of Kings. I am a scholar, visiting here from the south. I had hoped to find lodgings and a place where I might begin my research. Could you gentlemen direct me? But please finish your game first, I do not wish to interrupt."

Ashlion is quite content to stay and watch the rest of the game since he enjoys chess in his own right. He and Lisk play regularly although Lisk doesn't take losing well. However if offered information and his hanging around seems unwelcome he will leave politely.

Better? :)


Ah you play chess? So do I, we should play sometime. These men would be playing a slightly different version then we are used to though.

'Scholar." the man says, rolling the obviously unfamiliar word on his tongue. 'Scholar."

He pauses, moves a pawn forward a few squares then adds, "I don't know much about research or that sort of thing. As for where to stay...Silver Shore or High Bluff?" he jerks a thumb towards the elegant and refined High Bluff in the distance.

While they wait for Ashlion to answer the men play their game, pieces moving quickly. The other men remain silence, although Ashlion can tell they are engaged, despite shoveling down dishes of spicy rice and eggs. Judging from the seating and silence, it is an established group of friends or colleagues.

Grand Lodge

Mindblade 6/DD 2 HP: 50/50; AC:20(24) FF:18(22) T:13; F:+9 R:+7 W+8; Init +2, Perc +13(15), Concentration: +12 {+16 defensive cast}
Magic:
PP: (5)7/7 Lvl 1: 4/5, Lvl 2: 4/4, Lvl 3: 1/2
Lisk:
25/25, AC 22 (18), T: 16 (12), FF: 18 (16) | F +4, R +6, W +5 | Improved Evasion. Immune: Sleep, Paralysis. SR: 13. | Perc +8 | Greater Invis 2/3, Lvl 1: 6/6

I play a lot on chess.com - you ever tried that? I assume theres is more like the original indian form, no en-passant etc.

"High Bluff seems like a place for people with more money than sense." Ashlion comments easily as he follows the game. The two players are obviously familiar with each others styles from the pace they are rattling out the moves. He looks around carefully trying to observe any clues about the men's occupation from their clothes and tools. Perception: 1d20 + 12 ⇒ (20) + 12 = 32

"I think the Silver Shore is probably much more suitable for me. Better suited to my purse too! I'd be indebted to you for your advice. On a similar note, if I may trouble you further. Are there any book sellers here on the Archwalk?"


I have my account there too. What is your rating?

Judging from clothes and discussion, it appears most of them are porters for the local merchants and shops, on a lunch break. The game winds down,a s the fatter man gets his elephant in the middle of the board, dominating several ranks and files. Resigned, the other man tips over his King and grumbles mildly.

The winner turns back to Ashlion, face smug with victory, "Ah, well. There are plenty of places to stay on the Shore. Some of the temples will take in travelers for free, but if you want a nicer room...the Winding Ribbon is a nice enough place." He gives suitable directions for Ashlion to find it. "Nice place, I had a cousin stay there once."

The group starts to break up, lunch ending. Rice is bolted, men stand up, stretching. When Ashlion asks his next question though, a thin, reedy man answers, turning back to face him.

'I work for a book seller, one of the biggest. I am going back for my shift, you can come with me if you like." he seems friendly and honest enough.

Grand Lodge

Mindblade 6/DD 2 HP: 50/50; AC:20(24) FF:18(22) T:13; F:+9 R:+7 W+8; Init +2, Perc +13(15), Concentration: +12 {+16 defensive cast}
Magic:
PP: (5)7/7 Lvl 1: 4/5, Lvl 2: 4/4, Lvl 3: 1/2
Lisk:
25/25, AC 22 (18), T: 16 (12), FF: 18 (16) | F +4, R +6, W +5 | Improved Evasion. Immune: Sleep, Paralysis. SR: 13. | Perc +8 | Greater Invis 2/3, Lvl 1: 6/6

Depends what format - I'm highest rated over the longer times but I tend to play 5 mins, or 3|2. 1500-1600 generally.

"You are very kind. I will join you with thanks." Bowing to the other men Ashlion leans over the board to pick up one of the pieces and admire it for a moment. When he puts it back down there is a gold coin underneath it. "My thanks for your council and the spectacle of the game." He turns and follows the reedy man, as they go he tries to engage the man in conversation.

"So friend, what sort of books sell best here?"


The thin man shrugs, "Expensive ones. All I know. I just move them and stack them. I don't read them, can't read at all actually."

If you have more to ask, feel free. I can splice it in

The man deftly leads Ashlion through the crushing mass that is the Archwalk. Without his guide, Ashlion wonders how he would have made it thought he pressing throng. He sees shops for everything and anything on the crowded walkway, from live animals to artwork.

Finally the man points to a thin, tall building made of wood. It looks solid enough, but needs some work. Paint is peeling, windows flap in the breeze, the steps tot he door look uneven and creaky. The back of the building stretches far out over the edge, balanced precariously over the river below. Several buildings do this, hoping to gain more room, but the bookshop is worse then most.

"Kiaan's the name of the shopkeep. Nice fellow, if a bit dry." With no more explanation he leads Ashlion into the building.

Inside, there are piles and piles of books, manuscripts, codices, everything. There appears to be no order and Ashlion sees works on botany and farming mixed with astrology and theology.

A wizened figure comes from behind a counter. It is a tielfing Ashlion notes with surprise, but a very old one, back bent with age. his horns are yellowed and dull, half-hidden below grizzled white hair. he has a slight limp but his voice is strong enough, 'Welcome, welcome. My name is Kiaan and this is my bookshop. Can I interest you in anything?" he ignores the other man who starts to shuffle boxes and crates of books around.

Grand Lodge

Mindblade 6/DD 2 HP: 50/50; AC:20(24) FF:18(22) T:13; F:+9 R:+7 W+8; Init +2, Perc +13(15), Concentration: +12 {+16 defensive cast}
Magic:
PP: (5)7/7 Lvl 1: 4/5, Lvl 2: 4/4, Lvl 3: 1/2
Lisk:
25/25, AC 22 (18), T: 16 (12), FF: 18 (16) | F +4, R +6, W +5 | Improved Evasion. Immune: Sleep, Paralysis. SR: 13. | Perc +8 | Greater Invis 2/3, Lvl 1: 6/6

"Thank you sir, my name is Ashlion. I have travelled here from Rajatapour to conduct some personal research. I was asking around about bookshops as a suitable place to begin my research and you were recommended to me by your assistant here. I can see why, you have quite the collection!"

Ashlion looks around with unfeigned admiration, although the organisation leaves something to be desired the range is simply phenomenal.

"My research has been on the origins on folk tales and legends here in the north. Tell me sir, do you have any books on dragons? They feature heavily in the old stories but I have not yet been able to track down a single reliable bestiary. If you had something I would be greatly indebted to you."

Ashlion feels Lisk attempt to transform when he actually mentions dragons aloud and ruthlessly exerts his will to keep Lisk in weapon shape. This is not the time Lisk! Trust me on this! I don't want to reveal everything to the shopkeeper, while he thinks I'm just another folk tale peddler he'll help me. He doesn't need to know more!

Ashlion adds, as though he's just remembered. "Particularly Sovereign Dragons if possible? They're purported to only be present in Vudra I believe?"


I really like the part telling Lisk to settle down!

'Dragons?" Kiaan says, musing over the word. 'Real stories about them are hard to come by. Always wrapped in legends and myths...."

The bowed tielfing wanders over to a giant stack of books, piled well above Ashlion's head.

'I believe I have some basic adventurer tales and reports. How accurate, I don't recall..." he picks through some dusty books, muttering to himself. "Sovereign Dragons also occur in Tian Xia, according to the tales. but yes, primarily Vudra. Plenty of legends about them, laying down with young maids and such. It is funny, you never heard about them laying with young knights..." he chuckles,a dry, raspy sound.

As he does so the shop door opens again, and three young men enter. Without looking Kaain calls back, 'With you masters in a moment."

The lead man grins, and Ashlion has a prickle of concern. Their movements were fluid, easy, with swords at their side. They did not look like book shoppers...

'I don't think so old man. I think we'll cut to the front of the line." he holds up a sack and makes his way to the counter "Fill the sack!" he shouts at Kiaan, who is standing paralyzed, still half-turned towards his books. 'Where do you keep the coin?" the thief bellows.

The other two men stand by the door, eyeing Ashlion, hands on pommels.

Grand Lodge

Mindblade 6/DD 2 HP: 50/50; AC:20(24) FF:18(22) T:13; F:+9 R:+7 W+8; Init +2, Perc +13(15), Concentration: +12 {+16 defensive cast}
Magic:
PP: (5)7/7 Lvl 1: 4/5, Lvl 2: 4/4, Lvl 3: 1/2
Lisk:
25/25, AC 22 (18), T: 16 (12), FF: 18 (16) | F +4, R +6, W +5 | Improved Evasion. Immune: Sleep, Paralysis. SR: 13. | Perc +8 | Greater Invis 2/3, Lvl 1: 6/6

"It's no business of yours where an honest man keeps his coin." Ashlion grimaces, deliberately showing off his fangs. Lisk. Now is the time.

Reaching inside himself Ashlion summons the lightning that seethes through his veins, surrounding his hand in a crackling nimbus of lightning as a long, subtly curved sword in cobalt blue extends from his clenched fist.

"I hope we aren't going to have a disagreement gentlemen."

Move action for Lisk to become a falcatta, start casting an intensified shocking grasp on the other hand. Should be a good show!


So the spell is a readied action? Not exactly sure when you say 'start casting' when it only takes a standard action

Grand Lodge

Mindblade 6/DD 2 HP: 50/50; AC:20(24) FF:18(22) T:13; F:+9 R:+7 W+8; Init +2, Perc +13(15), Concentration: +12 {+16 defensive cast}
Magic:
PP: (5)7/7 Lvl 1: 4/5, Lvl 2: 4/4, Lvl 3: 1/2
Lisk:
25/25, AC 22 (18), T: 16 (12), FF: 18 (16) | F +4, R +6, W +5 | Improved Evasion. Immune: Sleep, Paralysis. SR: 13. | Perc +8 | Greater Invis 2/3, Lvl 1: 6/6
GM Mowque wrote:
So the spell is a readied action? Not exactly sure when you say 'start casting' when it only takes a standard action

I'm a bit vague about how to apply metamagic - since I cast like a bard i.e. spontaneous then I'm assuming intensified makes it a FRA. Basically I'd like to be holding a fist full of electricity (as per description) ready to use at the first sign of trouble :D


The two men by the door hang back, staring at the crackling ball of energy in Ashlion's hand. The leader though eyes the Mindblade.

"Who are you?" he asks, then kicks Kaain to the floor roughly. "I don't think you belong here." He waves a sword in Ashlion's face.

Grand Lodge

Mindblade 6/DD 2 HP: 50/50; AC:20(24) FF:18(22) T:13; F:+9 R:+7 W+8; Init +2, Perc +13(15), Concentration: +12 {+16 defensive cast}
Magic:
PP: (5)7/7 Lvl 1: 4/5, Lvl 2: 4/4, Lvl 3: 1/2
Lisk:
25/25, AC 22 (18), T: 16 (12), FF: 18 (16) | F +4, R +6, W +5 | Improved Evasion. Immune: Sleep, Paralysis. SR: 13. | Perc +8 | Greater Invis 2/3, Lvl 1: 6/6

Now Ashlion is usually a very mild-mannered sort, years of intensive meditation and training in a great monastery will do that. But more recently, as signs of his draconic heritage have manifested he's been finding it harder and harder to hold on to his temper. Waving a weapon in his face and kicking a defenceless person with whom Ashlion was getting on well was never going to help him keep his cool.

Ashlion looked the man straight in the eye, then swept forward. His first blow pushed the mans weapon aside and the second, delivered with both hands as lightning ran up the blade struck for the heart.

Swift Arcane Strike before attacking
Attack (Spellcombat: 1d20 + 10 ⇒ (4) + 10 = 14
Damage: 1d8 + 7 + 2 ⇒ (6) + 7 + 2 = 15
Attack (Spellcombat/Spellstrike): 1d20 + 10 ⇒ (8) + 10 = 18
Damage + Shocking Grasp: 1d8 + 7 + 2 + 7d6 ⇒ (5) + 7 + 2 + (5, 4, 1, 6, 1, 2, 2) = 35

Uninspiring... if he's flat footed though... :)


Two attacks? Nice. Downside though, Shocking grasp only scales to 5d6 damage, not 7d6. Unless I am missing something? So only 31 damage.

Ashlion's second attack hits the man hard, lightning raging, small but painfully bright off the blade. It stabs him right in the chest, through his flimsy, threadbare clothes. His dark, mustachioed face reels back in pain and shock. His whole heaves with pain, and it is clear he has been severely wounded.

His face, slack with pain, tightens as the pain subsides slightly. With his own blade, he attempts to disarm the mindblade, lashing out quick as a blur.

Disarm: 1d20 + 12 ⇒ (20) + 12 = 32

Ashlion's blade falls to the ground, silently stabbing into the dirt floor.

The other two thugs circle, casually, swords out eyeing Ashlion. The leader is shaking his head, blood in his mouth. He smiles, a gory smile saying, 'Surrender, and we'll leave you alive."

You aren't flanked yet, but if the other thugs press attacks, you will be. Anything unclear?

Grand Lodge

Mindblade 6/DD 2 HP: 50/50; AC:20(24) FF:18(22) T:13; F:+9 R:+7 W+8; Init +2, Perc +13(15), Concentration: +12 {+16 defensive cast}
Magic:
PP: (5)7/7 Lvl 1: 4/5, Lvl 2: 4/4, Lvl 3: 1/2
Lisk:
25/25, AC 22 (18), T: 16 (12), FF: 18 (16) | F +4, R +6, W +5 | Improved Evasion. Immune: Sleep, Paralysis. SR: 13. | Perc +8 | Greater Invis 2/3, Lvl 1: 6/6
GM Mowque wrote:
Two attacks? Nice. Downside though, Shocking grasp only scales to 5d6 damage, not 7d6. Unless I am missing something? So only 31 damage.

The Intensified meta-magic lets the cap rise to 1d6/caster level max 10, not 5. So I can do 7d6 now and eventually 10d6 at level 10 if we get that far.

That was a good disarm - now I get to laugh at him though :D

The man was quick, Ashlion could give him that, lashing out and tearing Lisk from his grasp. The look on his face when the blade simply faded away before reforming in Ashlion's fist was hilarious. Ashlion takes a couple of careful steps back, bringing all the thugs back into his vision. "I could do this all day! Surrender and I'll leave you alive."

SA: reform my falcatta. MA: retreat (withdraw action if need be) to try and avoid being flanked so easily.

I assume the thug has improved disarm and therefore didn't provoke an AAO? Just being hopeful :D


He does have Improved Disarm

The thin faced leader, grasps his wounded chest, eyeing Ashlion and the sword in his hand.

"This isn't over!" he barks, and turns to his men. "Let's get out of here."

They flee the bookshop, the leader trailing blood.

Kiaan staggers to his feet and shakes his head. "Robbers..in town?" he seems totally confused but then focuses on Ashlion.

"You saved my life!" He comes to his full height and bows. "Anything you ask of me, I will do."

Grand Lodge

Mindblade 6/DD 2 HP: 50/50; AC:20(24) FF:18(22) T:13; F:+9 R:+7 W+8; Init +2, Perc +13(15), Concentration: +12 {+16 defensive cast}
Magic:
PP: (5)7/7 Lvl 1: 4/5, Lvl 2: 4/4, Lvl 3: 1/2
Lisk:
25/25, AC 22 (18), T: 16 (12), FF: 18 (16) | F +4, R +6, W +5 | Improved Evasion. Immune: Sleep, Paralysis. SR: 13. | Perc +8 | Greater Invis 2/3, Lvl 1: 6/6

Ashlion opens his hand, letting Lisk fade as he feels the dragon's familiar weight settle once again under his loose shirt.

"Is it unusual to have robbers here then Kiaan? In Rajatapour most shopkeepers had to pay protection money to one gang or another - it was just a fact of life. Ashlion eyes the blood trail leading out of the door, unsure of whether he should pursue. A moment's reflection suggested that the moment was probably past - pursuit should have been immediate with the crowd outside.

"If we could return to our previous business." He smiles. "I am still interested in what you have about dragons. Although you're right. I don't know why it's only young ladies and never young knights... It can't be the size difference." He muses, making a mental note to ask Lisk later.


The bookseeler shakes his head, "Lord Mayor Akashar doesn't allow much crime, it interferes with mining and business. This is very unusual..."

He smiles as Ashlion's joke and pulls two books from the teetering stack. "This all I have on dragons, I'm afraid."

They are both rather useless. One is a bestiary about 'regular' dragons, their habits and weakness.

The other is a book of tales about how Sovereign Dragons 'came from the sky' , taught early man how to farm, sew, and build before engaging in massive wars then fleeing. It has many religious overtones as well, with plenty of moralizing mixed in.

Kiaan looks sad, and offers, "I would suggest the Archive of the Known. It is the largest library in Radripal. You need a noble to vouch for you but if you can get that...."

Grand Lodge

Mindblade 6/DD 2 HP: 50/50; AC:20(24) FF:18(22) T:13; F:+9 R:+7 W+8; Init +2, Perc +13(15), Concentration: +12 {+16 defensive cast}
Magic:
PP: (5)7/7 Lvl 1: 4/5, Lvl 2: 4/4, Lvl 3: 1/2
Lisk:
25/25, AC 22 (18), T: 16 (12), FF: 18 (16) | F +4, R +6, W +5 | Improved Evasion. Immune: Sleep, Paralysis. SR: 13. | Perc +8 | Greater Invis 2/3, Lvl 1: 6/6

"Thank you Kiaan. The advice is useful as are the books. How much do I owe you for them?" After paying Ashlion continues the conversation.

"Do you have any suggestions about how I might go about getting a noble on side? I assume it's not as easy as knocking on some doors and asking?"


The book seller shook his head, "I owe you my money, my shop, my books." he says firmly, then adds like an afterthought, "My life. You will pay me nothing. Take them, I insist."

He ponders Ashlion's question, "I do not know, sir. I have some nobles buy from me. Collectors and the like, but I do not know them. I would offer something they want in exchange. Money or perhaps some special skill you posses?"

Of course, you could already break into the library or something...?

Grand Lodge

Mindblade 6/DD 2 HP: 50/50; AC:20(24) FF:18(22) T:13; F:+9 R:+7 W+8; Init +2, Perc +13(15), Concentration: +12 {+16 defensive cast}
Magic:
PP: (5)7/7 Lvl 1: 4/5, Lvl 2: 4/4, Lvl 3: 1/2
Lisk:
25/25, AC 22 (18), T: 16 (12), FF: 18 (16) | F +4, R +6, W +5 | Improved Evasion. Immune: Sleep, Paralysis. SR: 13. | Perc +8 | Greater Invis 2/3, Lvl 1: 6/6

It's not really his style...

"You are very kind Kiaan." Ashlion responds, packing away the books. "I will treasure them."

He pauses for a few moments, mulling over his options. "Forgive me one more question if you would be so kind. Are there any shops nearby which sell scrolls and other magical accouterments? If I am to make an impression on the nobles here I will need my paraphernalia - travelling light is no way to make a first impression!"

Once he leaves the shop Ashlion takes a moment to find a less busy corner where Lisk can change and they can talk in relative peace. What do you think Lisk? This Archive seems like the place to go but getting in may not be easy. Do you have any ideas?

Leaving this open for you to respond as Lisk if you want :) His current plan is to buy a scroll of invis or something similar and then scope out the Archive, see if it's possible to sneak in if he can't talk his way through first... I usually have Vanish as a matter of course... kinda cursing not having it now!


Do you want me to play Lisk or not? Some players like to control their familiars and such> What personality does Lisk have?

Kiaan nods, "Many places on the Archwalk. I would recommend Bastar, a few shops down. he only has a cloth stall, but his items are fine quality for reasonable price." the old tiefling still seems shaken and as Ashlion leave, she sees the man close the shop, probably to go lie down.

Grand Lodge

Mindblade 6/DD 2 HP: 50/50; AC:20(24) FF:18(22) T:13; F:+9 R:+7 W+8; Init +2, Perc +13(15), Concentration: +12 {+16 defensive cast}
Magic:
PP: (5)7/7 Lvl 1: 4/5, Lvl 2: 4/4, Lvl 3: 1/2
Lisk:
25/25, AC 22 (18), T: 16 (12), FF: 18 (16) | F +4, R +6, W +5 | Improved Evasion. Immune: Sleep, Paralysis. SR: 13. | Perc +8 | Greater Invis 2/3, Lvl 1: 6/6

I'm happy playing Lisk as a general rule - I wasn't sure if you'd like to have him available if you ever need to prod me in a certain direction. Dual control as needed?

Ashlion leaves the shop and begins strolling down the Archwalk. He keeps an eye out for Bastar as recommended, but his main focus is on magical stores. He needs options and his current spells will not provide that. Lisk slips out of his robe and takes the air, wheeling high above like a surprisingly spiky pigeon.


To be clear, Bastar is a magic shop

As Lisk flies away, Ashlion can hear a thought from him, about the Archive.

Dangerous... but Ashlion can also hear the dragon's pride, as if the word is a compliment, not a warning.

The crowd is denser then ever, buying and selling everything. Street performers crowd the streets, creating knots of onlookers that freeze traffic. Carts and wagons block the way too, bawling oxen adding their low note to the general noise.

He sees a rather large stall that seems to sell magical supplies. A round, dumpling like man is running it. When eh spots Ashlion's interest he bows slightly. 'Can I be of assistance? My name is Bastar, purveyor of magical goods."

Grand Lodge

Mindblade 6/DD 2 HP: 50/50; AC:20(24) FF:18(22) T:13; F:+9 R:+7 W+8; Init +2, Perc +13(15), Concentration: +12 {+16 defensive cast}
Magic:
PP: (5)7/7 Lvl 1: 4/5, Lvl 2: 4/4, Lvl 3: 1/2
Lisk:
25/25, AC 22 (18), T: 16 (12), FF: 18 (16) | F +4, R +6, W +5 | Improved Evasion. Immune: Sleep, Paralysis. SR: 13. | Perc +8 | Greater Invis 2/3, Lvl 1: 6/6

"Greetings Mr Bastar. I am hoping to acquire some scrolls of magic, to supplement the collection I am accumulating for my temple in Rajatapour. Do you have any such items I can peruse?" As Ashlion listens to the shopkeepers reply his mind quests out to Lisk, high above him.

Keep an eye out for those thieves from earlier, them turning up at Kiaan's store may just be coincidence but it seems suspicious.

Ashlion has to hide his grin as Lisk's grumbling response comes back. Watch out he says, as though I got a good look when you were swinging me around like a meat cleaver! Fine, but only because my draconic senses are so far superior to your inferior human ones!


What scrolls are you looking for? Assuming they are fairly usual, Bastar will have them.

The merchant grins, his smiles creasing his whole face. 'Oh yes, of course. Please, sit, sit. I will get them" he points to a cushioned chair.

He soon begins piling scrolls on the tables and counters around, heaping them. Ashlion sees a wide variety.

'Anything you like, sir?"

Grand Lodge

Mindblade 6/DD 2 HP: 50/50; AC:20(24) FF:18(22) T:13; F:+9 R:+7 W+8; Init +2, Perc +13(15), Concentration: +12 {+16 defensive cast}
Magic:
PP: (5)7/7 Lvl 1: 4/5, Lvl 2: 4/4, Lvl 3: 1/2
Lisk:
25/25, AC 22 (18), T: 16 (12), FF: 18 (16) | F +4, R +6, W +5 | Improved Evasion. Immune: Sleep, Paralysis. SR: 13. | Perc +8 | Greater Invis 2/3, Lvl 1: 6/6

A couple of scrolls of Invisibility would be main priority. Glibness would be nice too.

After a few minutes sorting through the scrolls Ashlion extracts a few that he is particularly interested in and rises to pay Bastar. As he approaches and fishes for the coin to pay he attempts to strike up a conversation.

"This is a most impressive shop Mr Bastar. You have a most impressive collection. Since you are clearly a man of taste I would like to pose a question to you. I've heard tales of the Archive of the Known and the wondrous knowledge that it contains. I understand that one needs a recommendation to enter - do you have any suggestions as to how a person, new to the city, might go about acquiring such a thing?"


Pay the usual SRD price for two scrolls of invisibility and one of glibness

The plump man bows low. "You do me too much honor, generous sir. As for your request, you are not the first such man of letters to ask."

He looks over the Archwalk, marshaling his thoughts.

"You have a few options, depending on your...individual skills, good sir. One of the best is to visit the Suyuddha Ghat, down on the river edge on the Silver Shore. It is one of the largest in the city, just off the temple to the goddess. Many powerful priests and healers can be found there, some with the authority, perhaps, to allow you entrance."

He shrugs, "Of course, there is Lord of the Watch, Lakshay Patel. He is often found in the Argent Palace, he points to a glittering silvery building on the Silver Shore. He is charged by Rajah Akashar with guarding and keeping the peace in the mine and other areas. He is always looking for useful help and information. An honest man, if a hard one."

The merchant looks around, making sure they are not overheard, "If honesty doesn't matter to you, Dhruv Ranga, Lord Mizra could suffice. His fingers are in many pies across the city and rumors has it he can give anything, for a price, not always payable in silver."

The merchant raises his voice, shaking his head "Will that suit, sir?"

Good range of options?

Grand Lodge

Mindblade 6/DD 2 HP: 50/50; AC:20(24) FF:18(22) T:13; F:+9 R:+7 W+8; Init +2, Perc +13(15), Concentration: +12 {+16 defensive cast}
Magic:
PP: (5)7/7 Lvl 1: 4/5, Lvl 2: 4/4, Lvl 3: 1/2
Lisk:
25/25, AC 22 (18), T: 16 (12), FF: 18 (16) | F +4, R +6, W +5 | Improved Evasion. Immune: Sleep, Paralysis. SR: 13. | Perc +8 | Greater Invis 2/3, Lvl 1: 6/6

An excellent range of options! :) Having checked the price of a scroll of Glibness I'll just go for the invisibility.

After a moments calculation Ashlion realises that buying all his prefered scrolls would consume too many of his resources and he reluctantly replaces the most complex one.

Bastar proves to be a mine of information and Ashlion bows his head in thanks. "You prove to be a man of wisdom and discretion as well as taste Mr Bastar. May the gods watch over your business and bless it with prosperity."

He leaves the shop and makes his way to the edge of the Archwalk, allowing the crowd to pass him by as he stares across the city. So Lisk, what do you think? The Lord of the Watch sounds like a man we can do business with, since I'd prefer to not become involved with this Lord Mizra.

The reply comes back promptly. Better to avoid favors from those you don't know. I would go first to the Suyuddha Ghat - find out what their price is. Then go to the Lord of the Watch if you must. I still don't see why you're so obsessed over the records. What's wrong with a good old fashioned quest into the unknown?

Lisk, you are the strangest mix of grandfather and small child I have ever know... With that Ashlion suits action to his familiar's words and departs for the Silver Shore and the Suyuddha Ghat, stowing his scrolls in his pack as he goes.


The bank of the Silver Shore is a complex mix of wharves and docks and religious temples and ghats.

In case you do not know, a ghat is a wide platform on the rivers edge for religious use

It is a crowded place, a mix of holy pilgrims and burly merchants. Swamis, gurus and monks jostle with traders, sailors and porters. The area around the Suyuddha Ghat however, is set aside of religion.

The ghat is the largest Ahslion can see, a huge limestone slab laid just next to the river, whose water ripples over the edge. Men and women of all stripes are here, washing in the river hoping for wisdom, holiness or healing.

Ashlion catches a few eyes, but not many. It is a crowded holy place, a major destination for religious pilgrims. No one seems to be in charge however.

Grand Lodge

Mindblade 6/DD 2 HP: 50/50; AC:20(24) FF:18(22) T:13; F:+9 R:+7 W+8; Init +2, Perc +13(15), Concentration: +12 {+16 defensive cast}
Magic:
PP: (5)7/7 Lvl 1: 4/5, Lvl 2: 4/4, Lvl 3: 1/2
Lisk:
25/25, AC 22 (18), T: 16 (12), FF: 18 (16) | F +4, R +6, W +5 | Improved Evasion. Immune: Sleep, Paralysis. SR: 13. | Perc +8 | Greater Invis 2/3, Lvl 1: 6/6

Not as easy as I'd hoped...

Finding a convenient bundle that no one seemed to be moving Ashlion sits down and observes the crowd performing their ablutions. Watching quietly he allows his eyes to unfocus, observing the ebb and flow of the people rather than the specific movements of individuals. He stays this way for some time, trying to intuit any focal points of the movement, and therefore leaders.

Perception: 1d20 + 12 ⇒ (15) + 12 = 27

Ignore this if Ashlion finds someone worth talking to at the Ghat
Giving up at last with a sigh, Ashlion rises and turns his footsteps towards the Argent Palace, Lisk perched on his shoulder to 'rest his wings a moment' - the closest the dragon would ever come to admitting that he was tired.


Nice use of 'ablutions'. Vocab points!

Ashlion absorbs the comings and goings of the ghat but eventually gives up. As he stands, Lisk perched, a bearded old man sitting with feet dangling in the holy water, waves a hand.

"Young sir, are you looking for someone?" The man's face is wrinkled and tanned, obviously someone who spent a great deal of time outside. He has a walking stick but looks reasonably fit, for someone of his advanced age.

Grand Lodge

Mindblade 6/DD 2 HP: 50/50; AC:20(24) FF:18(22) T:13; F:+9 R:+7 W+8; Init +2, Perc +13(15), Concentration: +12 {+16 defensive cast}
Magic:
PP: (5)7/7 Lvl 1: 4/5, Lvl 2: 4/4, Lvl 3: 1/2
Lisk:
25/25, AC 22 (18), T: 16 (12), FF: 18 (16) | F +4, R +6, W +5 | Improved Evasion. Immune: Sleep, Paralysis. SR: 13. | Perc +8 | Greater Invis 2/3, Lvl 1: 6/6

"Greetings Elder." Ashlion speaks politely, as befits one of greater age. "I am a scholar and I seek entrance into the Archives of the Known. I was told there might be holy men here who could offer me entrance into the archives."


The bald, tanned man grins, showing a number of broken yellow teeth. "And what wisdom could one find behind old stone walls and in musty scrolls? The gods are not found in such places." he seems more curious then dismissive.

Ashlion notes a few others watching the exchange with interest.

Grand Lodge

Mindblade 6/DD 2 HP: 50/50; AC:20(24) FF:18(22) T:13; F:+9 R:+7 W+8; Init +2, Perc +13(15), Concentration: +12 {+16 defensive cast}
Magic:
PP: (5)7/7 Lvl 1: 4/5, Lvl 2: 4/4, Lvl 3: 1/2
Lisk:
25/25, AC 22 (18), T: 16 (12), FF: 18 (16) | F +4, R +6, W +5 | Improved Evasion. Immune: Sleep, Paralysis. SR: 13. | Perc +8 | Greater Invis 2/3, Lvl 1: 6/6

Ashlion eases himself into a sitting position. This conversation has all the hallmarks of becoming a debate like the ones he would face in the temples. "I confess Elder, that I do not seek the gods, merely a more earthly matter. I am trying to trace my father's heritage for he died when I was very young and I know nothing of him, except that his family lived here in the north. I am hoping to find records here which I could copy to help find my relatives, if any remain, and to bring peace to my mother. Ashlion grins, looking slightly embarrassed. "A personal reason, and you would not be the first to call it trite, but it is my own. The god's look kindly on those who speak the truth, do they not?

I like Vocab points - esoteric words are one of the fun bits of the english language!


The apparent holy man nods, "This is true. But you must not become too entangled in worldly matters. They have a way of embracing you to the exclusion of all else."

The man pauses but goes on, still in a friendly enough fashion, "I may be able to help your quest, young student. But, in the way of the world, I desire something in return."

He waves a hand at the mountains lying to the north of Radripal. "Three days walk into the mountains there is a small monastery. There is a young acolyte living there, and I wish him brought to the city. I would go myself but bandits have recently started living in the high passes, and they lack respect for even a man such as myself. You look like a strong, active man. Could you retrieve this acolyte for me, in exchange for access to the Archive?"

Side quest!

Grand Lodge

Mindblade 6/DD 2 HP: 50/50; AC:20(24) FF:18(22) T:13; F:+9 R:+7 W+8; Init +2, Perc +13(15), Concentration: +12 {+16 defensive cast}
Magic:
PP: (5)7/7 Lvl 1: 4/5, Lvl 2: 4/4, Lvl 3: 1/2
Lisk:
25/25, AC 22 (18), T: 16 (12), FF: 18 (16) | F +4, R +6, W +5 | Improved Evasion. Immune: Sleep, Paralysis. SR: 13. | Perc +8 | Greater Invis 2/3, Lvl 1: 6/6

"It is always a pleasure to help a holy man such as yourself Elder." Ashlion replies politely. "I would be glad to see more of the country around here and perhaps some time away from the great cities will allow me to loosen the embrace of worldly matters." He pauses for a minute, considering the logistics of his trip.

"Where might I meet you again Holy One, when I return with your acolyte? Since we have not introduced ourselves I lack a way of locating you in future. I am Ashlion, forth grade initiate of the Great Temple. Would you also be kind enough to tell me more of this acolyte, that I may convince him of my authenticity?"

****************
Why did you agree to this? Lisk grumbles as Ashlion strides out of Radripal. Couldn't we at least have stayed long enough to get a proper meal?!

What kind of dragon are you? Ashlion asks, thoroughly amused. I thought a 'mighty hunter' like yourself would be delighted to be out in the wild.

Well, I may have said such things before. But I still appreciate a good cooked meal as much as the next dragon!

Fine, fine. When we get back I'll take you to whatever curry house you want.

Bantering away Ashlion and Lisk move purposefully into the gathering dark.

Due to the Ring of Sustenance Ashlion can pretty much leave immediately. Low light vision will mean the ability to travel most of the night I imagine so he'll travel as much as possible and catch a couple of hours sleep opportunistically when a good place/time presents itself. Lisk can sleep whenever and be look-out while Ashlion sleeps. That ok?


The man grins, "My name is Babu. That is all. You can meet me here, while the sun is up, any day of the year." He kicks his feet a bit, the holy water splashing him. "The waters heal my aged bones."

His describes the acolyte and how to get to the monastery. The young man Ashlion is looking for is apparently a black-haired youth, with pale skin and a feisty attitude. Ashlion gathers the kid may not be entirely willing.

The mindblade makes his way up the stony paths, leading into the cragged peaks. The way is street and rarely traveled. few men live in the mountains aside from a few goatherds and scattered monks. Frankly, Ashlion wonders who these 'bandits' are robbing.

The second day, Ashlion is walking with Lisk at his side. Suddenly, behind two huge boulders,a tawny shape appears. It slinks into the middle of the path, eyeing Ashlion.

It is a mountain lion, of large size, full grown. Its yellow eyes focus on Ashlion, hungrily. To the left th path plunges over a steep slope of rock scree and granite ledges. To the right, a sheer rock wall. Ashlion can try to run down the steep path behind him or stand and fight.

Grand Lodge

Mindblade 6/DD 2 HP: 50/50; AC:20(24) FF:18(22) T:13; F:+9 R:+7 W+8; Init +2, Perc +13(15), Concentration: +12 {+16 defensive cast}
Magic:
PP: (5)7/7 Lvl 1: 4/5, Lvl 2: 4/4, Lvl 3: 1/2
Lisk:
25/25, AC 22 (18), T: 16 (12), FF: 18 (16) | F +4, R +6, W +5 | Improved Evasion. Immune: Sleep, Paralysis. SR: 13. | Perc +8 | Greater Invis 2/3, Lvl 1: 6/6

Ashlion summons Lisk to his hand, casting a spell almost instinctively as he does so. As his sword forms in his hands he spreads himself wide, trying to look as intimidating as possible.

Better post this morning got eaten by the server... :(

1. Cast Shield, SA.
2. Manifest Falcatta, SA.
3. Start casting intensified Shocking Grasp
4. Intimidate. 1d20 + 2 ⇒ (10) + 2 = 12

That's the ideal sequence of actions. Just stop it wherever if the lion starts getting antsy! :)


Ahslion has time to cast a magical shield around himself as well as summon up a blade, made of Lisk's body. Just as he starts to cast his next spell the lion attacks.

It moves like a blur as it pounces across the empty space between them, fluid motion.

Claws: 1d20 + 10 ⇒ (9) + 10 = 19
Claws: 1d20 + 10 ⇒ (2) + 10 = 12

Damage: 1d8 + 6 ⇒ (5) + 6 = 11

Bite: 1d20 + 9 ⇒ (16) + 9 = 25
Damage: 2d6 + 6 ⇒ (4, 2) + 6 = 12

Ouchies, 24 damage

As the lion bites down on Ashlion's shoulder, it tries to use it's weight and ferocity to grapple the mindblade.

Grapple: 1d20 + 6 ⇒ (8) + 6 = 14

It fails, but leaves Ashlion covered with horrid claw and bite marks.

Grand Lodge

Mindblade 6/DD 2 HP: 50/50; AC:20(24) FF:18(22) T:13; F:+9 R:+7 W+8; Init +2, Perc +13(15), Concentration: +12 {+16 defensive cast}
Magic:
PP: (5)7/7 Lvl 1: 4/5, Lvl 2: 4/4, Lvl 3: 1/2
Lisk:
25/25, AC 22 (18), T: 16 (12), FF: 18 (16) | F +4, R +6, W +5 | Improved Evasion. Immune: Sleep, Paralysis. SR: 13. | Perc +8 | Greater Invis 2/3, Lvl 1: 6/6

With shield my AC is 23 so only the bite lands... phew!

Growling almost as loudly as the lion Ashlion reaches for the lightning and thrusts his weapon deep into the lions flank. The lightning leaves a large scorch mark and the lion yowls in pain.

Spellstrike and Spellcombat, Arcane Strike
SG Attack: 1d20 + 10 ⇒ (15) + 10 = 25
Normal Attack: 1d20 + 10 ⇒ (1) + 10 = 11

SG: 1d8 + 5d6 + 7 + 2 ⇒ (5) + (6, 4, 5, 3, 3) + 7 + 2 = 35 No time for intensified :(
Normal: 1d8 + 7 + 2 ⇒ (6) + 7 + 2 = 15


Will post later today, sorry about delay. Some very negative going on at work

Grand Lodge

Mindblade 6/DD 2 HP: 50/50; AC:20(24) FF:18(22) T:13; F:+9 R:+7 W+8; Init +2, Perc +13(15), Concentration: +12 {+16 defensive cast}
Magic:
PP: (5)7/7 Lvl 1: 4/5, Lvl 2: 4/4, Lvl 3: 1/2
Lisk:
25/25, AC 22 (18), T: 16 (12), FF: 18 (16) | F +4, R +6, W +5 | Improved Evasion. Immune: Sleep, Paralysis. SR: 13. | Perc +8 | Greater Invis 2/3, Lvl 1: 6/6
GM Mowque wrote:
Will post later today, sorry about delay. Some very negative going on at work

No worries - real life comes first. I'll be here whenever work settles down.


Right, have to recall your AC is 24

Ashlion has hurt the mountain lion badly, as seen in the huge wound in its side. Blood pulses out, in time with the heart pumping inside. It growls low in its throat, a desperate hungry sound. The lion has eaten lone travelers before but it usually much easier then this.

With a final whine it jumps and vanishes among the rocks.

Before Ashlion can take a step or even sigh in relief he hears a voice from the sheer rock wall above.

"Very impressive." It is a gruff, blunt voice. 'I particularly liked the part where you summoned the sword."

The voice seems honest about the respect. "Unfortunately for you, I have two archers trained on you. So don't think you can fight your way out of this one. Just put your money on the ground and be on your way. No need for anyone to get hurt."

Grand Lodge

Mindblade 6/DD 2 HP: 50/50; AC:20(24) FF:18(22) T:13; F:+9 R:+7 W+8; Init +2, Perc +13(15), Concentration: +12 {+16 defensive cast}
Magic:
PP: (5)7/7 Lvl 1: 4/5, Lvl 2: 4/4, Lvl 3: 1/2
Lisk:
25/25, AC 22 (18), T: 16 (12), FF: 18 (16) | F +4, R +6, W +5 | Improved Evasion. Immune: Sleep, Paralysis. SR: 13. | Perc +8 | Greater Invis 2/3, Lvl 1: 6/6

Ashlion raises his hands above his head, letting Lisk slip out of visibility. Stay hidden, we're running! He slowly turns around, keeping his hands raised and his posture unthreatening, trying to pick out the robbers above him. Perception: 1d20 + 12 ⇒ (1) + 12 = 13

Ready action to cast Invisibility if the robbers attack. Can I climb up the wall or not?


Maybe, but it would be a high Climb DC. Probably DC 15.

Ashlion can't see anybody among the rocks, he wouldn't have thought anyone could be hidden in the sheer rock face.

"Good." the voice says, pleased, "Now, just lay down your coin and you can go on your merry way. Do it. Now."

Grand Lodge

Mindblade 6/DD 2 HP: 50/50; AC:20(24) FF:18(22) T:13; F:+9 R:+7 W+8; Init +2, Perc +13(15), Concentration: +12 {+16 defensive cast}
Magic:
PP: (5)7/7 Lvl 1: 4/5, Lvl 2: 4/4, Lvl 3: 1/2
Lisk:
25/25, AC 22 (18), T: 16 (12), FF: 18 (16) | F +4, R +6, W +5 | Improved Evasion. Immune: Sleep, Paralysis. SR: 13. | Perc +8 | Greater Invis 2/3, Lvl 1: 6/6

Ashlion cast invisibility, As a psychic caster this doesnt involve any gestures or incantations. and takes off down the path towards the monastry as fast as he can. He makes sure to stay close to the rock wall, trying to obscure the aim of any bandits above him. Lisk is curled up under his arm.

If (within the next seven minutes) Ashlion finds a good place to counter ambush he will take cover and prepare to do so, otherwise he will sprint for the first thirty seconds-minute in order to get distance and then slow down but move as quickly as possible onwards to his goal.

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