The War Wolves check the stone, which orbits Ragnar, then turn and leave, yelling at their dogs to go first. Just before the last War Wolf walks through the gate to High Road he pauses, turns and speaks in atrocious Taldan.
"You are good well fight for a gang with no songs. I am Erik. Come see me if you want brave rich work."
Ulfen or Linguistics DC 10:
translation: you worked together and fought well. I was surprised a gang with so little reputation was so effective. I can give you some high risk but high pay work if you would like it. My name is Erik
The last of the War Wolves leave.
Minnow slumps to the ground.
The kids on the roof of grandmother's house troupe back inside.
Numerous faces peering out through windows up and down Malthus street slowly withdraw back inside their houses.
Thank you, Weyland. I would have never asked you to do that. It took, courage.
But, this entire mess reminds me of a saying of my people that Grandfather is fond of... "You'll never live long enough to see your enemies stay enemies, for long."
Let's go check on Minnow... and Grandmother, the stress can't be helping her in her current condition.
Aku! Walk with me, good friend. Tarek places his arm around Aku's shoulder.
You missed all the "fun", sadly... Minnow apparently decided it would e a good idea to steal something from one of the War Wolves, a stone that circled the boy's head... you saw it? I have no idea why as yet.
They gave chase, intending to run her down and take back what was theirs. They followed her here... I tried to diffuse the situation. You know I detest needless bloodshed.
Shae decided to screw around, he doesn't mind the bloodshed so much... I nearly died because of it, but Weyland dropped in quite literally, like an avenging angel, almost killing the boy... I nearly think he was just showing off, and saved my life most likely.
Anton refused to heal the War Wolf, instead patched me up pretty good... I can sleep the rest off.
I think this Erik fellow was impressed by us, probably Weyland more than anyone else and invited us for... tea! Go figure.
Having reached Minnow, Tarek kneels to help evaluate her condition.
Pepper gives Shae a small grin, "Thanks. I'm just glad it turned out ok. I wonder if that Erik guy will be able to keep Ragnar from retaliating. He said something about some work for us. If it paid well enough, then maybe we can get some medicine for Grandmother?"
Hey, it was working fine until the stone turned out not to orbit.
Minnow is obviously exhausted
"I was looking for something to cure Grandmother. After days of looking I heard Ragnar of the War Wolves had a terrible disease kept at bay by his magic floating stone. When Grandmother..."
Minnow suddenly shuts up
@Sense motive DC 12:
Minnow almost told you something she obviously thinks she shouldn't.
"Anyway, I waited till his group was moving through East Markets, then grabbed the stone and ran. I was going to cut through to the Street of the Gods, but the Gate was blocked by an overturned carriage. I panicked and ran through to East Road, then climbed onto a building to lose the dogs, but Ragnar just kept coming. I jumpd down, and the dogs started gaining on me, so I panicked and came here."
Human Rogue (Scout/Knife Master) 3 , hp 21/21, AC 18(T16/FF12), CMD 18, Init +7, Perc +7. F+2/R+8/W+2
That was amazing, though I probably shouldn't make a habit leaping off of rooftops. Speaking of which, I got a little banged up in the fall, can anyone spare a bit of healing for the hero of the hour?"
Tarek reaches a hand towards Aku, from his sitting position. A little help?
They speak as they walk towards the house.
Aku, Pepper, Weyland:
Guys, Minnow was about to say something... some secret concerning Grandmother. Shae unknowingly gave her an out... she took it.
Aku, you have a way with people. And, a way of understanding what it is they're really meaning. Insight to their motives. I don't want to come at her all hot and heavy. But, we need get her to speak up.
I can only guess two things and neither is good. Grandmother's condition is worse, and somehow only Minnow knows. Or, Grandmother sent her to get the stone.
Let's get some dinner. I wonder if the younger kids already made short work of the pastries.
Hey, Erik really offered us work... That's kinda cool.
Tarek playfully makes like shivving Weyland with his empty hand, as if it holding a blade. Weyland "Combat Magic" Piper, might be too long.
Pepper, thanks for standing by me and not enciting them. There were a few moments where you could have taken a swing,but you held back... showed reserve and a steely will. I appreciate it and you know me, I don't like violence if it can be avoided.
In the absence of danger the ebbing of adrenaline leads to cameraderie and an eerie calm, but as soon as the group enters the house the calm gives way to a storm of chaos.
"Aku! Nuala says she needs you in the kitchen. Your pot is boiling over and the bread thing is starting to go black!" yells Gamil "'elpfully'.
Thom-Thom puts a hand on Tarek's shoulder as he tries to enter, physically checking he is all right, but stopping Nicator from entering.
Leander and Redneal smile proudly at Treize "We stopped 'em leaving!" Redneal starts "They went up top though - is that okay?" Leander finishes.
Scarves runs up to Pepper and leaps onto him, very nearly accidentally triggering a wrist sheathe.
Knuckles absently puts a half-brick on the dinner table as he tries to hold back the press of smaller children, attracting Eris' ire as he tries to dispense plates.
Sarah peeps around the corner of the doorway, blocking Grandmother from entering.
Eventually calm is restored though. The dinner is served. Grandmother starts to say the thanks to the Gods that still fight the invaders, but a coughing fit starts halfway through, and after a minute she gestures for Shaezon to continue it for her.
Perception DC 15:
There is red blood and black... powder? mixed on Grandmother's white handkerchief when she finishes coughing, and she seems to be trying to hide it.
Sense Motive DC 12:
Grandmother is keeping herself distant from the children - especially the younger ones. This is not her usual behaviour.
Separate Sense Motive DC 14:
Minnow looks away from Grandmother's coughing like she's scared of seeing something terrible and heartbreaking.
Heal DC 15 (untrained):
That's not Grandmother's normal cough. That's significantly worse than it was yesterday.
Anton focuses on the hankerchief out of the corner of his eye during the prayer, seeing the blood and what looks to be some kind of black powder. He looks concerned at her attempt to hide the kerchief and her recent pulling away from the children. What is going on? Maybe I'll try to get a better look at that cloth later. I'd better keep my eye on her and where she might throw it out.
When Pepper sees the bloody phlem he keeps his head down and continues passing the food, a sad look on his face. At Tarek's questioning, he grimaces, "Well, if you don't want to upset the young ones, then let's talk later."
Taking a bit of creative license and fastforwarding a bit, but I'll back up if needed. Hope that's ok.
After dinner Shae makes a motion for certainof the kids (aka the PC's) to follow him to an out of the way place where the youngsters aren't likely to overhear them talk.
"She's getting worse and we need to do something. Perhaps the dangerous work we were offered would lead us to somethign useful or at leat earn us enough money so we could afford to get her something helpful. What do you all think?"
Tarek shakes his head as if trying to shake some spell. He speaks as if reciting some memorized lecture. Avoidance is illogical. The truth is not a luxury, it is a necessity... if we are to be successful.
His voice then returns to normal, softer but just as resolute. I for one, intend on being successful.
Stop giving people the easy way out. If you do not have the stomach to ask the questions, let others more suited. I do not mean me, I am not so full of myself. I'm not the smoothest.
But, perhaps Aku or Anton.
Shae, we both wish the same thing... to help grandmother. Do you want to be guessing? Or do you want to KNOW?
"She's getting worse? I mean she's behaving oddly. but getting worse?" It was all quite a bit to take in. "I'll talk to her. We need to know what's going on in order to help her. Anyone else talk to Minnow yet? You said she knew more about this."
We are blessed with a big dinner table. But from where I was sitting tonight, it was plain to see. Her cough is different, even from yesterday. Phlegmy, and she is starting to spit up blood and something black. In one day, a lot worse.
When is the last time you've seen her sit and the end of the table? She's usually among the younger children. She's staying away from them. It must be breaking her heart. We act tonight, once we know more of what's going on.
Big kids see Erik, see what he's offering. Little kids scour the streets for a lead on something that can help. Information that we act on, not them. What do you think?
"Then do it!" Shae says emphatically. "Tarek, send the kids on their information finding mission. Aku and Anton, talk to grandmother. See what she knows and find out the real problem. I say we do both and sooner rather than later."
Male Human Black-blooded Oracle of the Dark Tapestry
"We can talk to her, but there is no guarantee she'll tell us. She hasn't been forthcoming about her illness, and in fact seems to be trying to hide it's effects. If she doesn't talk to us, we might want to try and grab her kerchief she had coughed into and bring it to a specialist, if there are any. Of course, we would also need money to pay for priests, doctors and diagnoses, which means talking to Erik."
Easy enough to get a doctor, if you can pay for a good one. Various casters - mostly religious - can cure most things, though a diagnosis first is always good. Grandmother works as a healer so there is a good chance she knows what's up
As regards Erik's offer, it isn't the only way to get money. Everyone in the group has some idea in the back of their heads
The Ulfen War Wolf Erik has offered a job doing something dangerous for good money.
Your estimate: well, he said it was dangerous and paid well. Might need some more information though.
You have done some research on Malthus Street. The caster (Kellen Daemonbane) who made Malthus street made three other streets. Each of those streets used to have a gate to his personal realm. Something happened twenty months ago that led to the council getting a sorceror to put up a wall of stone over the gate at the end of your street.
A caster powerful enough to create streets like this is probably loaded. Even a quick foray into his realm might net very rich rewards. Potentially some very brave individuals could break in - possibly with a spell - do some looting and get out.
Your estimate: in-and-out would be dangerous, but probably pay off. Looting the place would be insanely dangerous and have an incredible pay off.
Richemar Dendrane is a Chelaxian who rebelled against the House of Thrune. During the Invasion various pardons were given, but eighteen months ago he killed a minor member of the house of Thrune, then fled to a wild demi-plane. There’s a decent bounty on him, but most people consider not worth going up against an experienced guerilla fighter hiding out in a demi-plane with his favourite terrain. Bring him in and the 4000gp reward would do a lot for your group.
Your estimate: dangerous, but doable with enough support.
The other day Vartan mentioned that Councillor Kesh - theoretically councillor for your area - has a farm demiplane that recently stopped producing. Kesh sent two of his “attaches” in to take a look and neither came back. He’s reportedly interested in hiring some more expendable citizens to investigate for him.
Your estimate: not too dangerous, but probably not an amazing reward - Kesh is known to be stingy.
The Egorian University Library has a policy of acquiring a copy of all books that survived the Invasion. While theoretically all books will be bought there are some that are worth more than others - especially history books. House Thrune used to redact and alter the records, but they supposedly have some sets of the original Chelaxian history books. Barnabe salivates when he talks of them. He’s been tracking down leads. So far he’s found a guy who claims he knows of an archive that was put aside with some of these books pre-Invasion. Catch; the archive is in Hell.
Your estimate: if Barnabe can front you the money for the protections, not too dangerous. A good, maybe even really good, payoff, but you’d have to pay back the money you spent getting the protections and travel there (and importantly, back).
As a tattooist you hear things working on customers. Turns out one of the mansions on the High Road has just recently had a new noble moved in, displacing the merchant who used to live there. While the noble is supposed to be setting up new security, they’re also relying on the existing security while they set things up. Rumour you’ve heard is that the merchant who used to live there is not happy at being given the boot so might be prepared to sell information on how to get past the security she installed.
Your estimate: if you can get the merchant to talk this could be a pretty good payoff, though you’ll have to be careful fencing the goods.
Nkine months ago Astrid told you to watch out, she had heard of a “customer” (an assassin, or assassin thief to be precise) living in your street. Worried about the kids you kept an eye out and spotted her. Eventually one of the overgangs hired some guys to take her out, but they never found her stash, despite all but disassembling the house. Astrid told you that she supposedly had a magic ring or something that meant she never needed to use the bathroom (a real advantage when you sometimes have to hold a position for a few days) BUT you’d occasionally see her spending half an hour in her outhouse. Could be where she kept her stash.
Must be some trick though, or the current owners would have found it.
Your estimate: how can this be dangerous? Well, poison traps maybe. But an assassin’s stash should be pretty good, right?
You do occasional healing work, and spent some time helping grandmother when you were first learning. It made you contacts who still talk to you.
Everyone knows that occasionally an outbreak of plague hits a crowded and lower class segment of The City. When it does the area is often cordoned off in quarantine. Eventually the quarantine is lifted, reclaimers go in and the property is re-used. There is a window where the disease is theoretically gone but before the quarantine is lifted where it is possible to make some decent money looting the dead.
You know of a region in the city at just such a stage.
Your estimate: assuming no-one gets sick, safe as houses. Payoff won’t be so good in a poor area, but could be enough.
Why pay for something you can steal, right? Grandmother’s sick? Well the Temple of Asmodeus in High Road sells potions to cure just about everything. While such potions are expensive, if you could liberate a few and replace them with less... expensive potions, it is possible that it might be put down to an inventory error. It needs to be put down to error because the Temple does not take thievery lightly.
Your estimate: Planned well, hardly dangerous at all - not like you’re going to try to fence them. Need to keep the liberated potions to a minimum though.
You guys know Vartan, right? Well he told me Councilman Kesh has a pest issue... What kind of pest, I don't know. On his farm. He sent two attachees to check it out and they haven't returned.
He's a cheap bugger, or has a reputation for it. Maybe could be a cake walk... And, we'll milk him. It'll be good for future consideration... and it's legit. And he may be frugal, but we could make a name with the other politicos.
If anyone else has a shortie... we could knock out two tonight.
"I have an idea, but it's a pretty risky. I'd take the risk, but I cant ask that anyone else to do so. I have a lead on pre-invasion rare books. Essentially history books that have been unalered by house Thrune. They're worth a small fortune if we can get them. We have to go to a different plane, but I have someone who can send us and set us up with protections. We'll have to repay him with part of the profit, but that isnt an issue. Here's the catch. The archive is located in hell. "
Male Human (Varisian, Tian-Sing, Orc) Sorcerer 1 (Tattooed Sorcerer)
"If we're going by rumour: Know that mansion on High Road where the merchant just got kicked out? Apparently the guy is pissed and is willing to part with a guide to his security system, and the new tenant hasn't replaced it yet. The new guy is a noble of some sort, so profit should be fat."
Male Human Black-blooded Oracle of the Dark Tapestry
"If we're going to do some gate jumping, we might as well sneak through the one at the end of the street. Realm of a powerful sorcerer and all we got to do is get through a wall..." Anton chuckles a bit before frowning, changing the subject.
"But seriously, we need to find out what is wrong with grandmother. What is the disease? Can it be cured? How long de we have until it's too late? I'm going to talk to her, although I'm not sure if she'll say anything. I don't know why she hasn't told us about it, or anyone else, for that matter."
Pepper stares at Shae obviously trying to discern of he is joking. He shakes his head after a moment, "I be not for goin' to Hell, certainly I be not!" He looks to the others, "Well, if we be lookin' for a quick job, then the pest issue and a job I know of seem the quickest. You know that killer that worked down the road, the woman. Ever'one said that she had a stash somewhere, but those that kil't her couldn't find it. Now, ever'one said she had a ring that kept her outta the jakes, a good thing for someone who watches people for long times, but I saw her out at her outhouse for a long time on more than one occasion. I'd bet Grandmutter's broach that her stash is out there, hidden."
Working out an accent for Pepper, I figure he shouldn't sound so formal and educated. Tell me if it sucks, and I will stop :-)