That evening the lot of you make your way to the Jade Dancer- the place where this vile affair began.
The festhall is located near the city's West Gate. It is popular among merchants and outlanders, and it is well known for its attractive bar wenches, dancers and harlots. It is a big place. You recall from the layout that the main level is actually now the basement, as there was a fire somewhere back in the establishment's history that burned out the ground floor. The floor was never replaced, but a balcony was built around the entire perimeter of the interior of the ground level. When one walks in the front doors they find themselves on the balcony and it encircles the entire tap room down below. A set of wooden stairs leads down from the balcony to the common room. On the balcony level there are a number of small tables that seat two, which give those sitting in them a good view down to the common room. One wall of the balcony level also has several alcoves set in it that are concealed with beaded curtains and provide private booths for those who want a little discretion.
These are all things you know from having visited the place the night you were drugged.
As you approach the place you see that it is quite busy. Several folk who look like they came into town with one of the recent caravan arrivals make their way into the bar. They look like they've already had a few drinks and are ready to keep the party going. A large Zamoran bouncer stands at the door, you vaguely remember him being on duty the night you were drugged. He gives the caravan dregs a quick scan as they enter, but says nothing to them.
i was going to let the others take point on this one since Xanos wasn't taken from thus place, but I'll jump things forward.
Assuming the barkeep doesn't know Xanos or Doein, we can act as shills and lure him outside into an alley where the rest of you are waiting, or be unseen backup for when things go down. In either case the plan starts out the same.I'll let you three decide which, and just have Doein and Xanos go inside separately.
Yeah, it seemed like such a bustling well guarded place. I didn't want to just walk in and possibly be recognized. So I was waiting for someone else to post something :P I like DH's first plan better. Wait till closing time and try to lure the barkeep out back somehow. I don't want to get into a fight with the entire bar, or tip off the cultists to our presence if any are there.
Xanos sat at the bar with Dorin next to him, their tall frames head and shoulders above most other patrons. The barkeep had looked at the tattoed sorcerer strangely when he'd ordered a mug of hot water, but had shrugged when he'd followed it up with a request for a pitcher of ale.
When it arrived he slid the entire pitcher to Dorin and brewed himself some tea.
After he'd enjoyed his drink for a few minutes, he caught the bartender as he was passing and asked "Why do you put up with that drug-addicted fool outside?"
The bar tender looks to Xanos. He's a tall but obese man with tanned, sweaty skin. He stinks of body odour (as most people do) and his dirty apron wreaks of stale ale.
Hmmph, I'm not sure why I put up with a lot of things- like strangely tattooed foreigners who order hot water. What drug addict fool do you speak of?
Meanwhile one of the dancing girls has danced her way up to Dorin.
"Well hello there. I don't see many fellows like you around. You must be from somewhere very far away. Are you new to Shadizar? Would you like to sample some of our fine city's more exotic offerings?"
Ardeth, you note a table that has five city guards sitting at it. They appear to be off duty, but they are armed and one of them is keeping an eye on Xanos and Dorin.
"I paid for the water. Think of it as your ale cask simply going one cup further this time. It's not as if you don't water it down already." Xanos says with a shrug.
"We happened to overhear some Zamoran weasel in the alleyway outside reeking of lotus smoke and ranting about how the bartender here drugged him and sold him to cultists. We seemed pretty well un-sacrificed to me. Probably would have been better for the rest of the world if you had. Can't be good for business though. Seems odd you'd let him stay there."
His face goes a little dark. Then he smiles.
It sounds like I should sell him to cultists. Perhaps you and your big friend here can go see that he gets on his way.
He then calls to a big fellow who is in the midst of giving a beating to a patron who's being a little rough with one of the girls.
Samus! I got a job for you.
The stalky Zamoran walks over, picking a bloody tooth out of his knuckle as he approaches. He gives you and Dorin a look over. Then the bar tender says to him.
Samus there's a fellow out in the alley that needs taking care of. He's rambling all sorts of nonsense that might scare off the customers. Go send him on his way.
The big man nods, but says nothing. He then turns and heads for the stairs that lead out of the common room and up to the street level.
The bar tender smiles. His teeth are dirty; one of them is made of gold.
Samus will take care of it.
Dorin reflexively sneered at the guards looking over at them as he poured himself a huge draught and took a huge swig. He found himself not paying much attention to the conversation, instead watching the people about the place. He didn't intend on getting caught unawares in a tavern brawl (again), and the others would say something when it was time to move.
I was assuming that they were referring to some made up vagrant outside the bar, not you. You've been minding your own business and not causing problems, though you aren't exactly the kind of patron they'd be looking to attract. He doesn't seem to notice Ardeth as he heads up the wooden stairs and out the front door.
He looks around for a minute and then takes a few steps over to the mouth of the alley where he sees....
Okay, no worries. I was unclear. I thought Ardeth was actually in the bar.
In that case, Samas sees Ardeth sitting in the alley. He looks at him with a scowl and a snarl, and says.
Hey, you stinking vagrant, I hear you're causing problems and driving away the customers. Saul doesn't like his customers being scared away.
He then cracks his knuckles, smiles a cruel grin and strides forward, clearly intent on giving Ardeth the begger a beating.
Ardeth slashes out with his hidden daggers at the man as soon as he comes within reach.
Attack (Agility, Melee) 2d6 + 3 + 2 ⇒ (5, 5) + 3 + 2 = 15
Damage (Assassin, Agility) 1d4 + 1 + 3 + 2 ⇒ (3) + 1 + 3 + 2 = 9
If the Samus goes down, Ardeth will motion Temur and Juma over to drag the body away and hide it. Then go back to his beggar routine as if nothing happened. If Samus doesn't go down, hopefully Temur's bow can finish him off before he screams.
Samus isn't wearing armour, and he's pretty shocked by suddenness and ferocity of Ardeth's attack. Ardeth lands a couple of nasty slashes on the fellow; one is across the throat, and though, he doesn't seem quite dead yet the cut on the throat is making it pretty damn hard for him to do any screaming.
Anyone else in the alley can take an action at this point.
Since he's already silenced, Temur will clonk him over the head with hilt of his sword and drag him into hiding as he falls.
Attack(Str,Brawl,gangup)2d6 + 3 + 1 ⇒ (4, 3) + 3 + 1 = 11
Or at least, that's the plan. If he's still alive, we can kill him later. If he's dead, we can't bring him back if we need him.
He only had a couple of health left, so I'll assume it's done
You drag him into the alley. He's not in much shape to interrogate, so I assume you're waiting.
Back in the bar
Samus disappears outside. Several minutes pass and he doesn't return. Saul the bartender grows agitated. He mutters something about "what's taking him so long?" He looks at Dorin and Xanos suspiciously. Then he calls one of the serving girls over.
Mind the bar for a moment. I need to check on something. Dravis, Faruk come here I need you.
Two more thugs appear. One was already in the common room wiping down a table. The other comes out from a door behind the bar. The two of them join Saul and follow him towards the exit. On the way Saul stops at the table where the city guards are sitting. He leans over and whispers something in the ear of one of the guards. That guard motions to another guard at the table and that second guard gets up and joins Saul and his two thugs. The four of them then head for the exit. The remainder of the guards (4 in all) get up from their table and wander over to where Dorin and Xanos are.
The one that Saul whispered to takes the lead, and you judge him to be a slightly higher rank than the rest.
He says to Xanos:
You two look a little out of place in Shadizar. Where are you from?
Meanwhile Saul and his three henchmen step outside.
Outside the bar
The door to the tavern swings open. The bartender, two more burly looking bouncer types and a member of the city guard all come out. They look around a moment and then head towards the alley. The two bouncer sorts lead the way, while the bartender walks cautiously behind them. The city guard remains standing in the doorway to the tavern.
Anyone in the alley who wishes to be hidden will need to make a stealth type check. Of course there is a lot of fresh blood in the mouth of the alley, so it's going to be apparent pretty much right away that something is not right.
Back in the bar
Saul mentioned that you might know something about some kind of disturbance outside. He just went to check it out, but he asked that I keep an eye on you in case we need to ask you some questions.
So what brings you to our fair city?
You note that Saul and his cronies have now gone outside. The city guard that he brought with him is standing in the doorway to the bar.
Remember the common room is in the basement area and there is a balcony around it at ground level. The door to the outside is near the top of the stairs leading up out of the common room, so the guard at the door has a pretty good view of the common room.
"My companion seeks family who were kidnapped. I helped him find one of them. Now he is helping me find a stolen heirloom. The search has been less fruitful than I had hoped."
Ardeth runs up to the guards saying, "Help! Help! I was in the alley trying to score some good, and some guy came up and started hastling us. Then the dealer stabbed him real good and ran off! The big fella looked pretty hurt, he stumbled back farther into the alleys. You gotta help him!"
Not sure what kind of check this is but... 2d6 ⇒ (2, 5) = 7
Out in the alley
It would definitely be an appeal check. I suppose your assassin ranks could be applied to it, though that would be a bit of a stretch
Ardeth, you can easily make it to the guard, as he is standing near the tavern door and you would need to go through the two bouncers and then the bartender to get to him without using some fancy moves, and that would certainly risk blowing your cover. However the guard hears you well enough as the two bouncers block your path at the mouth of the alley.
One of the bouncers reach out to grab you by the throat, and at the same time tries to get his leg in behind yours to trip you.
Brawling: 2d6 + 3 ⇒ (5, 2) + 3 = 10
The other bouncer draws a club and looks deeper into the alley.
2d6 + 2 ⇒ (3, 2) + 2 = 7
Saul the bartender stays behind then, but pulls a dagger.
Out in the Alley
Ardeth, you are capable of dodging the bouncer's take down attempt on your, but if you want to try to maintain your cover a bit longer, you may be better off letting him put you on the ground, though you aren't sure what they plan to do.
Temur and Juma you can see the bouncer with the club looking hard into the darkness of the alley, but he doesn't seem to be able to see the two of you. So as long as Juma doesn't grin...
In the bar
Well those ain't the reasons most foreigners come to Shadizar, but I suppose everyone's got their problems. How did you end up with all those tattoos? They make me uneasy. They stink of sorcery.
Keeping an eye on the guard standing at the front door, you see that he's still there, but there is too much noise in the common room to hear whether your companions are causing any commotion out in the alley.
Racist joke whaaaaat?! >_< Can't believe you said that PH, bad form.
I will allow them to take me down.
I only said it because Juma had actually mentioned it back in an earlier post- something about him wanting the bartender to see only his big white grin in when he came out into the alley. I wasn't trying to be offensive or insensitive. My apologies.
Out in the alley
Anyhow the bouncer grabs you by the throat and then trips you to the ground, you fall into the muck and blood that infests the mouth of the alley.
You hear Saul the bartender. He's suddenly looking down at you with a killer look in his eye and his dagger in hand.
Where's Samus the bouncer I just sent out here?
The other bouncer with the club says:
Boss its too dark in the alley I can't see.
Saul then looks back to the city guard at the door and yells out.
Pass the lantern hanging inside the door.
It should be noted that there is a burning low set iron brazier on either side of the main entrance that illuminates the area in front of the bar's entrance and the mouth of the alley, as soon as you get deeper into the alley it becomes totally dark.
This is a Conan game. Sexism, racism, slaughter, theft. It's all part of the source material. Besides, for a racist joke it was really more observational humor than culturally bigoted. I thought it was funny.
"Some of them are honor markings and symbols of achievement from my people. Some of them are protective to ward of the evils of the world. Some of them are mystical conduits. Some of them are to protect the world. It is all rather complicated and symbolic."
The Kushtie giant growls subvocally to himself, displeased with the way their simple seeming plan appears to be panning out. In truth though, his growl is also in no small part due to his laying eyes on Saul, the bartender who drugged and sold or gave him to the cultists.
As the bouncer with the club advances further into the alley and then waits for a light, Juma crouches and readies himself. The last thing he had wanted was for the city guard to get involved, but it seemed like fate had a different outcome in mind. Now that Saul was in his sights though, he was not about to let the bastard get away.
Being very conscious of the demarcation line between the light and the darkness in which he crouches, Juma grips his spear and readies to thrust it through the bouncers heart if the man comes too close.
Are we in a dead end alley PHD, or could we conceivably retreat? If we do want to avoid a fight, we could always high tail it and come back latter and just follow Saul home or something. In fact, that likely woulda been a better plan from the get go ; )
The alley has a small wooden wall at the end of it. The wall is not in good shape or overly high, so getting over it or going through it would both be options.
The guard at the door ducks back inside for a brief second and grabs a torch from a bin beside the door (There are torch scounes on either side of the inside of the front door, and there is a bin underneath one that holds extra torches). He then lights it up in the brazier outside and hands it over to Saul, who takes it in his free hand and moves to pass it to the bouncer with the club. At the same time he continues to hold his dagger in a threatening way towards Ardeth waiting for his response, while the bouncer that had dropped Ardeth crouches down and keeps Ardeth pinned with a big hand around the assassin's throat. The city guard remains at the doorway, seemingly keeping an eye on both Saul and his captain.
Saul: Speak vagrant- before I scewer one of your eyes!
Is there any chance we could make it over the wall without being heard? Or still remain hidden even if he came all the way into the alley? Although, now that he's found Samus, does he have any reason to come all the way into the alley? Hmmm, decisions, decisions
Knowing that he can't remain hidden or make it over the wall without being heard, Juma readies himself to thrust his spear through the chest of the bouncer with the lantern should the man decide to come any closer.
Thrusting his spear straight through the man, Juma steps forward, his eyes focused on Saul, promising death.
Attack (Str, Melee): 3d6 + 4 + 2 ⇒ (3, 4, 4) + 4 + 2 = 17
Damage (Str, Melee?): 1d6 + 4 + 2 ⇒ (4) + 4 + 2 = 10 (That right? It's been a while)
Does Juma get another action since that was a 'readied action'?
You can make a non lethal attack with your spear, but you would use your brawling skill instead of your melee skill. When you calculate damage you only do weapon+ strength. However based on those recalculations, the attack still hits fine. FYI the guy you are attacking is one of Saul's bouncers not a town guard. There is a guard standing at the door to the bar, but the guys in the alley are Saul and two of his thugs.
Juma smacks the thug in the forehead with the butt of his spear, sending him staggering backwards. He stumbles a few steps and then promptly collapses to the ground.
Saul curses and rushes for the door to the bar. The one city guard that he did bring out with him moves to help cover Saul's retreat, drawing his scimitar. The final thug still has his hand on Ardeth's throat and moves to finish him (I know Ardeth was planning on acting, so go for it before you get hammered).
Round #1: Temur and Ardeth can take actions in the alley and the city guard and thug on Ardeth can still go. Juma has taken his turn for the round. Xanos and Dorin don't really know what's going on yet.
I'm not sure if Temur is around or not
Anyhow, as mentioned above, Saul makes a break for it, and the guard at the door moves to help cover his retreat.
Xanos and Dorin:
You suddenly, see Saul burst into the bar and start hustling his portly frame down the stairs to the common room area. As he makes his way down the stairs he shouts.
THERE'S TROUBLE IN THE ALLEY! YAMIR, HENIL, NAWAB GET OUT THERE AND HELP OUT.
Three more thugs that had been previously seated at a table playing a dice game jump to their feet at Saul's command.
Xanos and Dorin feel free to take any actions you wish. Remember there are 4 city guards around you right now. The guards haven't taken any action against you, but they certainly are paying plenty of attention to you.