Previously in Unhallowed Waters..."
The survivors of the Laughing Rogue successfully made their return to the city of Magnimar and captured the traitorous Eredin Valdemar. But danger follows at their heels. Half of our heroes have been given an ultimatum from the Lord-Mayor himself; retrieve an artifact from the dungeons under the Irespan, or he will press forward on the arrest of a number of the companions for previous crimes both real and imagined. Now they must seek an upper hand against the crafty politician, and have been advised to seek out a "Pwindle Rockbottom".
Meanwhile, the others have discovered the secret journal of Emilia's father, the Pathfinder Joshua Valdemar. Even stranger, the three thieves were assaulted by a mysterious obsidian elf....
The sun was high in the blue morning sky over the buildings of Magnimar. and the crisp salt-water air held a fine breeze over the Summit. Phaedra and Eaton step outside the gates of the Valdemar manor, about to embark on their task, when they see three familiar, and welcome sights.
Edgar, Sinders and Tellar walk up the road, each one looking a little worn but ultimately none the worse for wear. With clothes smudged in dirt, and with the crinkle of dried sea water, the three spent the remainder of their night in a small inn located in The Shadow, a cheap place but a discreet one - and now returned home.
"Oh, you know... the usual... Threatened to have you executed as a pirate, to have Phaedra imprisoned, to see Sin executed, and to cut my business off from Magnimar if I didn't lead you all into an unknown and possibly ancient death-trap to acquire some magic crystal he wants... for free. I told him we wouldn't be blackmailed. We will, of course, be blackmailed, because he has us over the fire, so now we're going shopping to get ready for the thoroughly unpleasant trip.", Eaton says, smirking and lofting the rolled up list in one hand.
"Should be at least as interesting as our deal with Old Warriz. Why don't you guys clean up and join us? Better we all travel together from now on... Just to stay on the safe side."
Edgar finds Emilia in her study, seated behind the large oak desk, there are numerous piles of Parchment that seem to be growing around her, as Tanyn leans over her shoulder, pointing out some figure out that,
"I'm afraid the recent years haven't been kind. The main fleet's come under severe taxation from Cheliax, the Northern Fleet's been reduced to a third her size from the season's storms..."
Emilia runs a hand through her hair, seemingly overwhelmed by... everything.
Those not chatting to NPCs, talk amongst yerselves. :p
Hanging out in the carriage yard, Eaton sighs and looks up at the sky. He takes a few moments to ponder, wondering what the future will hold for them all. Already they have been changed by their ordeal, and he can feel that 'intermediary power' clawing at him. He needs to find words in print, something to teach him more about what he is... -who- he will become.
Looking pensive, the young lord peers out the gate at the city outside Emelia's walls, wondering if, like his father before him, he is about to embark on a -mighty- adventure...
"Emilia, we got it." Edgar says as he pulls the journal from his coat pocket and sets it onto Emilia's desk, within arms reach. He explains everything that happened to here, including where the secret hiding spot was and the strange dark elf, unless she stops him from explaining. Edgar has no reason to suspect that that they are being monitored.
"Is everything ok? Is there something I can do to help?" Edgar asks, noticing how stressed out Emilia is.
I'm going to split the scene between "Before you Left" and "After you left" Feel free to have the others fill in our thieves in either section, but I would like to get this on her feet again.
DM's Note: Because of the forced nature of these checks, all checks lower than 10 will be considered to have taken 10. This won't be a regular occurrence. Only using those who are trained.
Eaton1d20 + 8 ⇒ (16) + 8 = 24
Edgar 1d20 + 3 ⇒ (1) + 3 = 4 =10+3 = 13
Number of hours 1d4 ⇒ 3
Before you Depart
"My Father's..." Emilia looks up from the desk and listens to Edgar's story with a rapt attention, never saying a word, never blinking.
When he finishes, she gets up from the desk and slowly walks around it, taking the small blue book from him, her fingers running over the cover, she opens it and reads the inscription, "It's been on that boat all these years... I..."
She looks up and her eyes, glistening with tears, meet Edgar's. Without a word she lunges forward, her arms wrapping around his shoulders and her face buries into the nape of his neck. with a muffled voice she says, "Thank you."
A moment later she pulls away from the embrace and wipes her tears away with a small laugh. "No, thank you though. You've done enough. Go with the others and sort out this mess you're in."
Turning to Tanyn she says, "We'll finish this later, I'd like to do some reading."
With a broad smile the old elf bows, "Of course Madam."
After you depart
The five friends venture off into the heart of Magnimar, and begin their search for information, and to find the man suggested by Emilia, one Pwindle Rockbottom.
Their search takes them down from the cliffside and back into the city proper - or at least what more working folk like Edgar and Tellar consider the City Proper. And throughout the day, they hear a number of intriguing things,
"Rockbottom? Thought he died years ago! When he wasn't on some danged adventure he was always working. No one could make metal sing like him."
"The Lord-Mayor?" answers one merchant, who's shop's set up near the road up to the Summit. "Right old git isn't he? Cousin o' mine heard he's got half the council in his pocket, uses them to stall out the others whenever he wants something done."
"Shard? Never 'eard of it."
"Pwindle? He's good people, if you don't mind the attitude," quips one young mage with the look of an adventurer, using her talents to help load up a cargo galley, "That dwarf can work a forge better than anyone, and there's hardly a thing going on in Magnimar that Pwindle don't know about. Last I heard he had a shop down on Quicksilver avenue."
"I'm no snitch, and you didn't hear it from me," mutters one guardsman, taking a break along the shoreline and watching the ships come in," "But he's got one of the Commodore's on the take. Uses him to organize 'off-duty protection.' for night time deliveries. Not often, he'd have hell to pay if Jegare ever found out..."
Following along that trail, they find a dock foreman, who's failing memory wondrously returns (with the cure of a few pieces of gold, who admits, "Yeah, Grobby's done some business through the docks, but ye'd never trace it back to him. Fall guys and interme...medi... middlemen. Besides he hasn't contacted me about it for weeks." After a thought he says, "You aren't the first ones asking after 'im. Some lass was around yesterday, I think she was Tian."
Before We Depart
Edgar freezes in surprise when Emilia hugs him.
When she thanks him, Edgar has trouble answering. "I-umm, er... I- A-anything for you Emilia..." He croaks out.
After a moment, unsure of what to do, Edgar starts to move his arms slowly to return the hug... but before he does Emilia brakes contact.
Edgar awkwardly throws his arms back behind him, trying to look natural. "Yes well um, It's back where it belongs now..." Edgar says with a smile.
When Emilia mentions the mess, Edgar sighs. "Yes, Eaton gave me a melodramatic run down... So they all know about me then? Er... I mean, what I was?" Edgar asks.
After we Depart
Edgar makes his way back to the group, He is in a better mood then normal, despite the troubling situation they are all in.
"OK, I'm ready. Care to enlighten me in a bit more detail what is going on with the Lord Mayor?"
After Gathering Info, The group heads to a tavern to grab some food and a drink and to discuss the next plan of action.
"Hmm, Ok. Should we head down to Quicksilver street then to find this Rockbottom guy? Or should we look into this Tian Woman? Maybe she can become a useful ally against the Lord Mayor? It would be nice to figure out which Commodore is in his pocket..." Edgar says after taking a swig of ale.
Before you Depart
Emilia sighs and gives Edgar a sympathetic look and nod, "It may not have been quite so melodramatic. From what I understand the Lord-Mayor is aware of your history as a pirate, that Sinders apparently attempted to steal from one of the Lord-Mayor's warehouses and he knows of the charges against Phaedra, from a Magister's son no less."
She shakes her head in worry, before nodding to the door, "You've only so much time to seek out answers before the guards come calling. Use it wisely."
After you Depart
The tavern is a fine dockside affair called "The Green Griffon", so named for a copper weathervane shaped as a Griffon that addorned its shallow roof that has since gone green with age. - Though most folk simple called it "The Griffon".
The Griffon is a wide two story affair, all of which is set up for dining and carousing. Even better, the Tavern has a patio on the ground, and a balcony dining area on the second floor.
The friends find a table on the terrace in a bit of shade from the sun and order themselves their drinks to plan their next move.
Don't feel the need to wait for me between your updates while you chat and plan.
Tellar glances around as the drinks are brought, admiring the fine furnishings. This is certainly a nicer place than I'm used to drinking in.
Settling back, he takes a long satisfying swig of his drink before setting it down. He takes a moment adjusting his leg into a comfortable position before leaning back. Given what you lads learned I'd say it might be best to try to find this Pwindle fellow. He seems to have some amount of info on matters that may prove useful and we have a good idea of where to find him. Finding some random Tian woman in a city like Magnimar would be worse than looking for a needle in a haystack. Plus if she was asking after him, there's a good chance that meeting him finds her as well.
Before Gathering Info
"He's robbing us. Nothing guarantees he won't continue to use the justification to destroy the lot of you once we get him his toy though. I'll have to arrange matters that make it far more trouble than it's worth to have you all 'disposed of' and me to be found dead in an ally somewhere, 'robbed' for the coin in my pocket. We'll do as the pig demands. We've no other options. That doesn't mean we have to like it, or that we have to be polite about it. Since he was a boor first." Eaton rummages in his pockets a moment before passing Edgar 'the note'. "That's what we know about our dwarven friend so far... pass it on to Tellar when you're done." There, with Edgar warned about the possible scrying, Eaton clambers up into the carriage and holds out a hand for Phaedra to help her in.
After the Gather Info
"Rumors of Tian girls always make me a touch nervous. Just like rumors of girls from Mediogalti. Or anyone carrying one of those blasted jagged-sabers." The young Lord sits back in his seat, looking down over the balcony and waiting for 'a bottle of the Inn-keeper's reserve', having ordered a hard alchohol for their respite. "We go find Rockbottom as quickly as we can, and assume all naval officers may be on the take. Avoid any entanglements with guardsmen, who we can also assume are corrupted by the corpulent Lord Mayor, and get out of the city as quickly as we can. We'll have to return to get Phaedra out of Grobaras' clutches, since he's making demands we lock her up with Emelia..."
Before We Depart
Edgar smiles to Emilia. "Thanks Emilia. Don't worry, we will be fine."
Edgar heads to the door and pauses as he opens the door.
He turns back to Emilia and says "Emilia, if you don't mind, once you have had a chance to read the journal, would you mind to tell me of your parents? I lost mine when I was young as well..." Edgar tapers of to a finish, not sure the best way to express himself.
After we Depart
Edgar reads the note, then stares at it for a moment puzzled. All of a sudden he looks around like he is being watched. "G-great... looks like we have our work cut out for us..." Edgar sighs as he passes the note to Tellar "So, uhh, what exactly did he say about me being a pirate now?"
At the Tavern
"Wait. Lock up Emilia? That is the first I heard of this! Why does he want to lock her up?" Edgar states, getting defensive.
At the Tavern
"Well, he wants to keep them as insurance against our absconding without getting him his loot, obviously. After threatening to hang you for a pirate and Sin for a thief, and slobbering all over himself like a raving porcine fool, he sat his enormous posterior back in his chair and behaved more civilly... I admit, I was caught a *bit* flat-footed by his blackmail, and could have handled it much more diplomatically, but really, I was caught with my pants down. I just didn't know what to say. I didn't even have any supper." Eaton sighs and shrugs, taking a big slug of his drink and cocking back his chair onto the back legs, eyeing Edgar ruefully. "All that stuff on the list, Mister Arrowni... Think we can handle that? Master Priest?" The young Lord shifts his attention aside to Tellar, shooting only a brief, worried glance at Phaedra.
At the tavern.
Seated near Starse, Phaedra sips a cup of whatever alcohol that as brought to the table in the hopes that it will calm her nerves. She is a bit more shaken that she cared to admit by the lord-mayor's threats. Not quite able to stop herself from snickering at Starse's understatement of how he "could have handled it much more diplomatically", she tries to at least hide it by taking another drink.
Then attempting to lighten the mood a bit with some humor, Phaedra remarks: "For all your talk, it seems odd you wouldn't know what to say when caught with your pants down. I would think it a common enough occurrence."
With a wry twinkle, Eaton smirks at Phaedra and murmers, "Well... Looks like I need a bit more practice. Maybe you can help me out with that later?", and hoists his drink, balanced on his fingertips with the short step protruding out between, and takes a quick sip.
Really want to know what Tellar and Edgar think about his Scrying theory. How else would Grobaras know so much about them in so short a time? They only -just- arrived in the city! The only other possibility is too horrible to consider... The hydra has many heads.
Same as before, feel free to mark any post with At the Griffin to wrap up any conversations or what not.
The drinks at the Green Griffin are finished quickly enough, after all it would be unwise to dawdle, and the group sets out again to seek out Pwindle Rockbottom.
The trail leads them down to Magnimar's Southeast end, to a wide roadway that winds along the coastline. One of the City's most prominent streets for those seeking arms, armor and anything else crafted from metals - Quicksilver Avenue.
The avenue was an airy and open one, that let the sun shine down and the smell of the salt sea air waft by, and all around was the ringing of hammers.
Finding Rockbottom's shop wasn't hard. A squat rounded building, smaller than the rest around it. smoke rises from an open yard surrounded by a short stone wall behind the building.
The walls of the shop are lined with weapons of various makes and models: Swords, spears, hammers, axes, crossbows and even exotic firearms such as Blunderbusses. Manaquins proudly display suits of finely crafted armor.
A small figure enters through the doorway from the back of shop. A squat metal ball, about twice the size of a watermelon that walks on four spindly spider-like legs. In the ball's center of a blue crystal that gleams with an inner light. Hopping up on the counter, the ball-like thing shifts back and forth as if "looking" at the newcomers.
When it speaks, the gem glows in rhythm with its monotone voice.
Good Day Customers. How may I assist you?"
Eaton stops and *stares* upon entering the shop.
"Fascinating. You're a construct? Elemental power-source? I've been looking into a means to take such a construct up a whole new level. Mobile battle-armor. A mage within a golem like a pilot on a boat. Are you intelligent? Do you answer questions? Who made you?" The bearded young lord shimmies up close to the counter and pokes at the metal orb, peering into the gem with an obvious obsessive enthusiasm.
Edgar stares at the thing with a long worried expression. "W-what is it?" He says after it clamors onto the counter. When it asks how to assist, Edgar replies, "Oh, Umm, W-we are here to meet Mr. Pwindle Rockbottom. Is that OK?" He says in a very monotone voice to the thing, assuming that will make his intent more clear to the bizarre creature.
Phaedra lightly elbows Starse in the ribs to get his attention off the construct and speaks to him quietly. "A little focus here would be nice m'lord. Perhaps after we finish our little mission here you can return and ask more questions. Some of us are on borrowed time you know."
Phaedra's brow furrows as she wonders what kind of time limit the group has. If they take to long to acomplish this mission will the lord mayor assume they are just stalling and then carry out his threats?
"I am a construct sir," the little ball replies, "But no, I am not powered by an elemental - though magic has played a part in my creation and function."
"My intelligence is simulated, a collection of facts and mannerisms built by my maakeer Pwiiinnnnnndd..."
The little metal creature's voice slows to a crawl before dying out completely, the light in its red eye goes dim and it slumps forward.
"Knut? Was someone at the door?" From the doorway at the back of the shop a second figure enters. A Dwarf with black hair that sticks wildly out from around his ears and the back of his head but has fallen away from his crown. He has a bulbous node adorned by a huge and bushy black mustache, but no beard.
He's dressed in a pair of trousers and a thick leather apron, with pockets and holders filled with hammers and pliers and screwdrivers and all sorts of tools hanging from his waist. A pair of heavy goggles, secured with a leather strap rests on his brow.
The Dwarf spots the little derelict ball and mutters a stream of curses, "By Torag's bottom, not again..." He walks over to the counter and from a pocket fishes out a long key, about a half a foot long, with numerous complicated prongs. He inserts it into the ball construct's back and begins to turn.
"Sorry about that," he says by way of greeting, "He normally runs a lot longer but something's wrong with 'im. Capacitor I think."
He smiles up and says, "Pwindle Rockbottom's the name. How may I help ye? Here fer a weapon? Maybe some new armor?"
Edgar finishes as the thing shorts out.
When Pwindle finally arrives Edgar answers, "Emilia Valdemar sent us. She said that you might be able to help us with a mayor problem." He says, eyes still on bizarre construct thing as Pwindle cranks it.
Eaton is about to leap forward and dismantle the thing and find out what's wrong with it when Pwindle's voice rings out from the rear doorway. His disappointment in not getting to poke around the inside of the construct only narrowly misses turning into a squee of excitement as he sees just how the Dwarf has side-stepped the elemental power-source issue with -clockwork- contrivance. Eaton takes a good -hard- look around...
Perception 1d20 + 0 ⇒ (14) + 0 = 14
but sees nothing out of the ordinary and so pitches his voice lower to address the dwarf... "Indeed, Master Rockbottom, though I've reason to suspect we're under observation by the obese sow who calls himself the Lord Mayor. I am Lord Eaton Starse, and these are my allies and companions, Mister Edgar Arrowni, first mate of the North Star; Miss Phaedra Valerius, an intermediary of the pure force of the Arcane; Master Tellar Bronsev, seaman and priest of the waves; and... we seem to have lost Mister Sinders... He often vanishes without warning. The young Lady Valdemar indeed referred us to your skill, but she failed to mention you were such an accomplished artificer! You're using translative stored power to make a sympathetic connection with an arcane power-source, or is this purely translated energy through a spring? Like how a catapult works? Ehhh..." he waves his hands and huffs "Distracted... appologies. We think we're being observed, as well. I have reason to believe Grobaras is spying on us, or part of some greater conspiracy of ne'er-do-wells bent on undoing Lady Valdemar and ruling the inner sea."
Edgar finishes as the thing shorts out.
This should have been... Edgar stares as the thing shorts out.
Edgar nods his head in agreement to Eaton's words. He raises an eyebrow and sighs as Eaton goes off topic, but is relieved when he gets back on.
The old dwarf looks at you all with a look of skepticsm, but it fades at the mention of Emilia. "Joshua and Kati's littlest one?" he scratches at the bristles of his chin before nodding, "alright then, come along."
He flips up the counter and ushers along the group to follow him. He leads them out through the back door which opens up to sunlight. An open air forge and anvil, fenced off by a low stone wall. Where the arms and armor in display in the shop itself were neatly arranged, the yard is strewn in chaos. Swords, axes, shields, pieces of mail and plate and bronze, bits of constructs and clockwork with no sense of organization.
Pwindle walks across the yard and into a domed bungalow on the other side. Into a
Common room of significantly dwarves architecture, he ushers for the newcomers to make themselves comfortable. The common room has a cool feel to it, and Even though plenty of light shines in from the windows, Pwindle lights a candle that sits on the hearth, and glows with a peculiar blue flame.
A well crafted and intricate warhammer holds a place of reverence in the hearth, and above it hangs a portrait depicting a younger looking Pwindle, a man and an eleven woman who bear resemblance to Emilia and Eredin, and a handsome man with a neatly trimmed beard who looks uncannily like Eaton.
Tellar shook his head as he sat in one of the offered chairs. Seeing the family portrait with what could only be Starse's father sent a brief shiver down him. This was messy enough when it was just the Captain's family business. Starse's too? Family always made things more ... complicated.
The common room is a large circular one, that is far more den than formal meeting room. The circular room has a large couch, a number of chairs, and a low stone coffee table. There's a bookshelf that runs from floor to ceiling and is filled with tomes, novels, rolls of parchment and other pieces of written information. In one corner near a window is a large desk, that's titled to a forty-five degree angle. A bin on the sill of the window holds a number of measuring tools, bits of charcoal, erasers and a magnifying glass, and a large scroll of paper is pinned down to the desk, while a rolled up pile of them rests at its side.
Organization is not a describing word here. Everywhere there are piles of books and scrolls, bits of half-finished technology or a weapon or piece of armor in some state of semi-repair.
Pwindle takes a seat on a low stool and casts an appraising gaze on the group, and Eaton, "Starse you say? Guess that makes you Iacob's pup? Heh," he gives a little shake of his head, "Figures you and Joshy's girl would be getting into trouble together. Gods are funny like that."
Giving a shrug, he continues, "Well we can speak safe in here, you best fill me in..."
I'm going ahead with assuming you stay on task, just to move things along abit. Feel free to sidetrack if wanted and needed as we go. I'm also only assuming you tell the basics, so feel free to elaborate if you want to talk to him about The Kraken or Eredin or anything else.
Listening intently, the old dwarf nods every once and awhile, at Eaton's comments on The Lord-Mayor's character he gives a small chuckle, but refrains from commenting until the tale is done.
"Grobaras is about as useful as teats on a kobold," he jokes - somewhat mirthlessly," "He's always been a conniving and greedy bugger. Your pop hated him to. He was just a magistrate back then..."
After staying silent a moment, the Dwarf just gives a shrug, "To be honest though, if you want your problems with him to go away. All ye have to do is wait a night."
His eyes turn serious, the mocking smile at the Lord-Mayor vanishes. "You folks aren't the only ones asking around after Ol' Grobby. There's been a woman for the past few days pokin' here and there. All pretty subtle, most probably wouldn't be able to connect it... but I know a lot o' folks, highborn and low."
"Not sure who paid for it, but it seems our dear Lord-Mayor earned the ire of some pretty powerful folks. The girl's a Mantis, and from everything I've heard, she means to strike tonight."
The Following are details you can notice about Pwindle's home, I don't see a need to put in perspective checks for them.
The painting is set against the backdrop of the docks at sunset, with a ship standing out against the horizon.
None of the subjects of the portrait look to be dressed in finery. The Dwarf wears a set of plate in the boxy fashion of his people, Katriel is wearing fine mail and Joshua wears a set of worn blue leathers, with a distinctive compass hanging from his belt. Even The elder Lord Starse - who looks remarkably like the son now sitting in Pwindle's living room - is dressed in a set of adventurer's robes, styled in green in white, designed for the rigors of the road.
The piece of paper on Pwindle's desk appears to be half-finished technical blueprints for a ship. However instead of a mast, a series of odd struts extend from the top and bottom of the ship's aft, ending in a strange open circle...
Edgar looks at the family portrait on the wall. "So you knew Emilia her whole life? You and her family must have been close. And is that your father Eaton? It looks to be the splitting image of you!"
When the Dwarf mentions that the mayor is going to be assassinated, Edgar shrugs. "Well, that works out in our favor then. Assuming that this assassin succeeds. If she fails i might buy us a little more time. What did this lady look like?" Edgar asks.
"Starse you say? Guess that makes you Iacob's pup? Heh, Figures you and Joshy's girl would be getting into trouble together. Gods are funny like that."
Eaton smirks and bobs his head once "None other, Master Rockbottom. I'm really doing my best to keep her -out- of trouble, but unsurprisingly, I seem to take after my father's tendency for finding trouble."
The young bearded lord laughs at the image of breasted kobolds, smirking wryly and nodding in appreciation of that particular bit of humor, his bright eye twinkling with purple sparkling. "Couldn't have happened to a nicer fellow... still... I can't imagine there's a nicer man in line for Slobaras' seat. Nothing Achekek's Fanatics do ever ends nicely for anyone. Seems to me the man should be warned. I've tried my hand at those saw-toothed sabers they make, but I can't get the balancing right. They're a real piece of weapon-work. Hard as a two-bladed sword, at least. But... Mister Arrowni, we can't -fight- a Red Mantis Assassin. Not a fully trained one. She'd eat us alive."
Looking up at the picture, he frowns a moment, then smirks "Oh. It -is- The Count My Father." A slight stress on the words makes it all a single title, like 'the well at the end of the world' is a single title. Undivorcible in his mind. "Were you part of my father's party, Master Rockbottom?" Calculations flash behind his eyes. That puts Pwindle Rockbottom in the higher percentage of powerful people in the world, and would make him something other than a wizard. The cleric, perhaps? The mastery of clockwork arcana would certainly seem to indicate some familiarity with magic...
"Oh I agree with you Eaton. I'm not looking to start a fight with anybody if I can afford it. If this assassin succeeds then that is one less thorn in our side. I was just thinking... Mr. Rockbottum, what do you know of dark elves?"
Sin sticks to the back of the group, staring around with dull, uninterested eyes. The news of his borrowed time was not that surprising really. He had a bounty on his head in more than one city.
'I live or I die... That has always been the way!'
Reaching up to lazily run a hand through his hair, he smirks softly, behind his mask. The young Lord Starse was indeed an entertaining man... to watch atleast.
'He got Ed and Phaedra in the soup too, just by running his mouth. The man is a wonder...' Sin grinned, the motion pulling at the corners of the mask.
He frowned softly at the mention of the Red Mantis. The Mantis were elite, the best of the best. If one was after the Mayor, he was as good as dead.
"But... He was my mark..." He sighs softly, his head hanging dejectedly.
Pwindle regards the group of them, and Eaton in particular, "Heh.. Maybe you aren't so much like yer pop. Iacob would'a just said to let 'em get what he deserves." he tosses a piece of parchment and a quill and capped inkwell to Eaton, "Write yer warning and I'll see to it that ol' Grubby gets it. Not that I expect it to do much good."
When Eaton's letter is written and signed, Pwindle places it in a small tube and heads outside for a moment, returning without the letter. "It's on its way, and as long as it isn't too late, will reach Grobaras on time."
he sits down and nods to Edgar's first question - albeit a bit late - "Oh aye, I've known Emilia and Eredin since they were pups. Sad to say I lost touch with them after their parents went missing. But I was close with Josh and Kat, along with the count," he tosses a grin Eaton's way,
"But it was Joshy's party if anyone's Eaton, not yer pa. But really it wasn't like that. We were comrades, family. Yer dad butted heads with Joshua more times than I can remember sure, but honestly I've never seen closer friends."
Pwindle pauses in his reverie at Edgar's question about "dark elves" and he gives a confused shrug, "Sides from a pointy-ear who's spent too much time in the sun?" The Dwarf can merely offer a repeat of his shrug.
The news spread through Magnimar like Wildfire before the sun even had a chance to set that same day. The Lord-Mayor Haldmeer Grobaras was dead.
Rumors and reports attribute the man's passing to the work of a Red Mantis assassin, and the story goes that shortly before the attack happened the Lord-Mayor rallied the City guard around his household estate as if preparing for a seige.
His precautions however were for naught. Guardsmen on duty reported seeing red blurs or a silhouette with a mantis like head, but nothing more. The Lord-Mayor was found dead in his bedchamber. No guards or household staff were hurt during the ordeal.
It had been two weeks since the murder of Grobaras. In the time the world has seemingly returned to normal. The City's council of Ushers stepped in to fill the power vacuum until a new Lord-Mayor can be named and in fact, the city somehow feels a bit... brighter.
For the survivors of the Eredin's attack, Life has been relatively quiet these past few weeks. Emilia has kept mostly to herself, though gracious and kind as always, and spends most of her free time - or the little that she has while trying to run her family's company - reading her father's journal.
One event that did pull her away from her readings though, was the trial of her brother Eredin, which was conducted last week. Despite the high profile of the case, the trial was a short one. Eredin pleaded guilty to all charges.
Which brings us now to today. a dreary and overcast day with the sky blanketed in grey. The day of Eredin's execution.
Slipping the hood of his cloak up over his head, Sin casts an eye at the sky above, frowning softly behind his mask. 'A lovely day for an execution...' he sighed, running a practiced hand over his gear one last time, to insure it was all there, before he slipped back in through the gates of the mansion.
He had spent some time, over the last couple of days, staking out the old Mayors mansion, in the hopes of finding a trace of the Red Mantis assassin, that had finally done for the old wretch. The presence of the Mantis always made Sin nervous. They were cold hearted, cold blooded and all together vile.
'Like me only female...' He grinned softly, before shaking his head.
He stopped outside the door, looking up at the mansion, a small frown crossing his face.
'Poor Emilia... Today can not be easy for her...'
Licking the nib and paring off a little of the quill, Eaton pens an letter in elegant hand, showing off all that expensive education with fancy curls and unnecessary flash.
It has come to my attention that an assassin has been seen in the City of Magnimar. Be on your guard. The Red Mantis does not always kill with a serrated blade. They can use poison, strangulation, deadly vermin, and a host of lesser deaths beneath the scope of face-to-face murder. I am told the assassin is a woman, but this does not mean she works alone, or that magic is not in play.
May the golden guardian lock your doors, and Old Deadeye keep the watch.
Lord Eaton Starse,
The Illustrious Empire of Taldor
At the end, he sketches a bare representation of his arcane mark on the page. "Shame I wasn't prepared for correspondence today. I'd have had that spell prepared...", he mutters with mild annoyance. Scattering whatever Pwindle has on hand to dry ink, Eaton blows off the missive and folds it over into three parts, leaving it for the dwarf to send. He smirks faintly as he packs it, and shakes his head, "Taldor is my nation. These fellows are my compatriots. Magnimar is your city. Not speaking proprietarily, but in the spirit of membership. 'My father's party'. As opposed to mine."[b], and he nods back at Phaedra by way of indicating the group of them.
[b]"The Count My Father is a man very comfortable with -power-. He is not terribly charismatic, and he often allows rationality to outstrip his compassion. I may be my father's son... but I am like to spend the rest of my life atoning for the actions of my forebears.", with a faint shrug, Eaton cocks a sharp, gullwing brow over his violet eye and smirks "I'm strangely OK with that."
Preparations for the journey only take a little hitch as the party hears of Grobaras' death, and it's Eaton's immediate suggestion that they -still- go after this infamous gem Grobaras was so keen to get his pudgy hands on. He'll take some time to figure out who the educated members of the city are, and to speak with them, and to spend some time with both Phaedra, and with Pwindle, but for very different reasons.
The young inventor wants to know more, in great detail, about the clockwork automoton, and to share plans, designs, and some of his skills with the dwarf.
He just wants to share some time with Phaedra.
Can I shop for a 50gp noble's garb, all in black, for appropriate attire for Eredin's execution?
Eaton's time with Pwindle is certainly interesting. The old Dwarf takes to Eaton like a fish to water and is all to happy to discuss the finer points of artifice and crafting. He tells of how he first met Eaton's father when Iacob was younger than Eaton was now, and had made a journey to the Sky City of Janderhoff to learn the Dwarven methods to Golem crafting.
"Yer Pa and I had some crazy ideas, I tell ye,"[/b[ Pwindle roared one evening, a mug of mead in his hands as he sits in his study talking to Eaton, [b]"Him and I came up with an idea to use bound elementals to power a contraption. In theory you could give anyone the power of the element then, or put it to all sorts of uses. Power a ship through the water, or even..." he grins widely, "The Air. Ah would've been great too, but Iacob and I couldn't find something strong enough to harness the energy. Core'd shatter every time."
In the late hours of the morning, a carriage picks them up from the Valdemar estate and takes them through the city to the square in front of the Pediment Building - center of Magnimar's Justice system. As they wind through the streets of the Summit, each of them can see the sealine down below, the Valdemar docks can be seen, where the North Star is currently moored, alongside the Laughing Rogue, which is now officially in Emilia's possession and is undergoing a refit, spying the two ships Emilia mentions, "Remind me to speak to all of you after today's events. I've an idea I'd like to discuss with you all, but it should wait until after."
They finally arrive and are greeted by a massive crowd of onlookers who have filed the square. News of Eredin's actions have spread throughout the city and it seems everyone who could has shown up to see the traitor hang.
Emilia and her party are greeted by a stern faced guard of Magnimar, dressed in silver and blue, his hand resting easily on his sheathed sword, his thumb just pushing the blade out in anticipation.
"My lady," he greets, "If you and your party will follow me, I'll escort you to your seats."
Perception:-1d20 + 6 ⇒ (15) + 6 = 21
Sin frowns softly, eying the Guards stance with an air of mistrust. There was something off about how the man stood, eager and a little too self assured. He was looking for a fight, or something more sinister. There was just that feeling about the city today.
Casually running his hand down his sleeves, he made note of the two blades he had stashed there, in case of an emergency, and smiled coolly. 'If things go bad at least I am prepared!'
He stuck to the back of the group, keeping his eyes peeled for danger, his hand never far from the hilt of the wakizashi that rested at his lower back.
Doom de doom de doom! Eaton goes on happy as a clam. Vengeance duly served, fools hoisted by their own petard, obligations met in a timely fashion, and worse and further arranged at the periphery. Sure, the Kraken may come crashing down to rescue this ass he formerly considered a friend, but no sense brooding over misfortunes not yet laid!
Impeccably groomed and turned out, Eaton has the good grace not to -appear- pleased with the younger Valdemar's death, lending a stoic shoulder for Emelia. He's also pleasantly oblivious to anything currently out of the norm.
When did all these posts happen? I coulda swore they weren't here earlier... -_-'
Perception 1d20 + 6 ⇒ (10) + 6 = 16
Edgar's mood matches the weather. Although Eredin is a murderous bastard, in a way he was like a surrogate brother to Edgar. Fredrick's murderer is getting the justice he deserves, but it just seems to depress Edgar all the more. He tries to keep a less somber attitude in front of everyone, especially Emilia, but as you all know, Edgar is terrible at lying and keeping up an act.
As they are heading to their seats, Edgar can't help but say in a feeble attempt to console Emilia, "...You alright, Emilia?."
If there is a dress code, Edgar is dressed appropriately for the execution, hiding a dagger and a sap on his person. Otherwise he will be armored and armed as usual. Everything has gone too smoothly, and who knows if Endrin doesn't have one last trump card up his sleeve. Whether it is the Kraken as Eaton believes or something else.
There's no enforced dress code, though some may consider it "good taste" to dress somberly. Generally nobles dress like nobles and everyone else like everyone else. After all this is a traitor being sentenced, not a funeral.
The guard - a captain by his rank - leads Emilia and her entourage around to a row of seats in the central gallery. "If you'll excuse me My Lady," he bows his head, and turns to head back the way he came.
The Square in front of the Pediment building is made of cobblestones, and stretches about forty feet wide and fifty feet long. It is surrounded on three sides by walls those rose Twenty feet before being capped off by shingled roofs to keep the rain off of any pedestrians along the top. The Pediment Building's massive face made up the final side of the square.
The gallows had been erected just in front of the building proper, the galleries had been built on either side of the square and were filled with the upper class of the City and their attendants - such as Emilia and the party. Finally the square itself had been packed full of commonfolk who had come to see the proceedings.
A hush fell over the crowd as Eredin Valdemar was marched from the courthouse. He was dressed only in a simple set of pants held by a piece of rope. His hands were fettered behind his back and he was covered in grime, his long hair matted and tangled.
He was marched up onto the platform, and was greeted by two men. The executioner, with his hefty axe and hooded mask, and the same guard who had greeted Emilia earlier.
"Eredin Valdemar. You have been found guilty of piracy, attempted slavery, kinslaying, and treason against Magnimar. Your sentence is to hang from the rope until dead... Do you have any last words for yourself?"
Eredin looks up at the Captain, a condescending smirk on his face. "You dare to judge me, to threaten me... and you dare to do so..." his eyes flick down to the saber in the man's scabbard, "...While wearing my sword?"
"Not yours, not anym.." In answer to Eredin the Captain draws the saber, with it's wicked curve and blade as black as night. And looks at his own hand in disbelief. "What... I'm not... no!" and suddenly the man plunges the blade deep into his own gut and twists, slicing through bone and organ.
"All of you will die!" Eredin belows, "And the Kraken will rise!"
The executioner roars and lifts his axe to strike down the magus, but a whip snaps up from the crowd, wielded by a dwarf in chainmail with a shaved head and one milk white eye who wrenches the man down into the crowd.
At the same time a gleeful cackle can be heard on the hair, and a skinny and emaciated figure appears on the rooftop opposite the gallery that you now sit in. A scrawny half-orc in a long duster. He lobs something small into the air, and the object crashes down onto the squad of guardsmen and explodes out in a ball of flame, catching guard and bystander alike!
Meanwhile Eredin stands on the stage, and his hands light on fire! melting through the iron of his shackles...
PC Initiative Rolls
Eaton Starse: 1d20 + 1 ⇒ (13) + 1 = 14
Edgar Arrowni: 1d20 + 5 ⇒ (19) + 5 = 24
Phaedra Valerius: 1d20 ⇒ 4
Sinders: 1d20 + 4 ⇒ (18) + 4 = 22
Tellar Bronsev: 1d20 + 1 ⇒ (5) + 1 = 6
Eredin Valdemar: 1d20 + 1 ⇒ (2) + 1 = 3
Half-Orc Alchemist: 1d20 + 2 ⇒ (14) + 2 = 16
Dwarven Fighter 1d20 + 2 ⇒ (13) + 2 = 15
Initiative order: Edgar (24), Sinders (22), Alchemist (16), Fighter (15), Eaton (14), Tellar (6), Phaedra (4), Eredin (3)
GM Notes: Moving through the crowds that are panicking will reduce you to half-movement unless you make an acrobatics check on 14. Eredin is about 25 ft away, the Alchemist is 40 ft away and on the roof (20 ft. up) and the drawf is about 30 ft away.
Round 1 Init 24
Acrobatics 1d20 + 8 ⇒ (19) + 8 = 27
I had a feeling something like this would happen... As if expecting it, Edgar draws his cutlass and takes off straight for Eredin, moving through the crowd like it isn't even there. When he reaches Eredin, he tries to gets a clean swipe at him...
Melee: Mwk Scimitar 1d20 + 5 ⇒ (16) + 5 = 21 (1d6 + 4 + 1d6 ⇒ (2) + 4 + (6) = 12 / 18x2) (sneak attack, TwoHanded)