You should always drop at least 1 point into it. With 1 point, you would have a +7 on spellcraft checks which is a nice backup for Karethas when he bombs and rolls a 1 on that really cool looking scimitar you want. Also, you have countersong (a generally useless ability), but if we get against someone using sonic powers or spells, being able to identify them might be critical.
You have a ton of skill points, I would ask DM Voodoo if you can Retcon 1 point into Spellcraft and drop one from something else from our last leveling.
Seeing as we haven't actually rested and levelled up yet, I may put a point into Spellcraft instead of Diplomacy then. I still wouldn't be able to Identify this evening, but starting from the morning onwards I could. Unless you mean ask if I could do that for level 3 as well? I don't get to use Diplomacy as much as I thought I would, so losing 1 or 2 ranks in that isn't a huge problem.
|Amir Awad Hajjir|
|Karethas ibn Faradin|
Karethas spends a portion of the rest time switching items back and forth with the diminutive dragon.
Big Axe: Spellcraft 1d20 + 11 ⇒ (17) + 11 = 28(4 rank, +3 class skill, +4 Int)
ring: Spellcraft 1d20 + 11 ⇒ (19) + 11 = 30(4 rank, +3 class skill, +4 Int)
wand: Spellcraft 1d20 + 11 ⇒ (9) + 11 = 20(4 rank, +3 class skill, +4 Int)
cloak: Spellcraft 1d20 + 11 ⇒ (5) + 11 = 16(4 rank, +3 class skill, +4 Int)
chainmail armor: Spellcraft 1d20 + 11 ⇒ (18) + 11 = 29(4 rank, +3 class skill, +4 Int)
|Karethas ibn Faradin|
The shop keepers laugh hysterically when Faelar asks if they have books. Goods for sale tend toward drugs, arms and armor, exotic furnishings, and other apparently stolen items. There is a boarded up store front that is filled with alchemical gear where Karethas sensed magic earlier.
Whatever Auri can't identify, Karethas easily fills in the blanks.
The blackened Great Axe is intimidating and of extra planar origin like Kzrira's bow. The edge is serrated like fangs, but has only a minor aura. +1 Great Axe
The ring is silver with an amethyst stone and serves a protective function.
Ring of protection +1
The wand is oak and tipped with a pair of bronze bullhorns.
Wand of Bull Strength, 8 charges
The chainmail also has a minor enhancement.
The segmented breastplate allows more mobility.
The Red cloak has golden trim and a golden lion rampant on it.
Cloak of Resistance +1
The White Cloak (oops, not blue) is silk with gold trim in the form of keys.
Cloak of Charisma +2
The Lord's quarters at the top of the market seem an appropriately inaccessible and comfortable place to rest. Indeed, Kardswann's chambers contain hangings and carpets of some value as well as a chest under the bed filled with coin and gems. = 5000 gp
It is early morning when you hear a tentative knock and the whispered voice of Haleen calling for Kzrira.
Is it a masterwork agile breastplate? Just trying to figure how it would affect my skills versus the chainmail.
Unless someone else thinks another split is better I would propose:
Ring --> Auri
+1 Chainmail --> Amir
Agile Breastplate --> Kzrira
Axe --> Amir (or sell, but it sounds like it may improve as does my Tempest bow.)
Cloak of Charisma +2 --> Faelar
Cloak of Resistance --> Karethas
Wand --> Karethas (or Auri since both can use it)
Should have more thoughts later when I get home.
I look confused as to why the shop-keeps are laughing at me, until I notice what the majority of their wares are. With that I walk back to the group to find Kzrira holding a Cloak towards me.
I gently take the cloak and admire it, before donning it. "What do you think, do you think it suits me? It doesn't make me look too fat or muscular does it?"
Oh and 5k to split!
Auri has pretty bad spellcraft because he only has an interest in Magic, sadly he only has an average Int so that hurts, the joys of just being Charismatic rather than truly 'smart'.
Auri looks at the ring closely.
"Hmmm, might keep me a bit safer against flying biting heads and arrows from Gnolls! So what of our Princess, and what of the fate of this town?"
Well, I need to talk with Haleen. Then we finish clearing out the riffraff. Hopefully she will help us, or at least tell us what she knows of this town.
When I hear Haleen calling:
Auri, I will call for you if I need any help.
I strap on the new breatplate, grab my bow, and step out the door to talk with Haleen.
Haleen, I am sorry that I did not follow you instructions, but . . . you saved me and I had to make sure you were ok.
|Karethas ibn Faradin|
The duelist frowns, but gives a nod. "OK, I understand that, but your timing is lousy. You should have obeyed my request. Listen Kzrira, I've been working for the Steel Falcons trying to end slavery in Katapesh. The Gray Corsairs have harried the slave galleys from Okeno and Katapesh City enough that some of the slavers are interested in restoring inland routes to Osirion."
"I've spent months infiltrating the stinking dogmen to lure some of the chief slavers beyond the Pactmasters' protection. We were so close. I'd heard Slow Idi and some of the lesser dealers were on their way. A few more months and we could have struck a decisive blow to slave dealing in Katapesh!"
"Who knows, maybe Solku would have supported us in defying the Pactmasters and outlawing slavery in the Outlands. Now I find that you are actually working for the bastards. How could you?! Is this what you want for Kelmarane?" She gestured to the mosaic showing slaves harvesting pesh crops that covers the wall of the corridor.
Well . . . I wish I had known this from the beginning. While we are assisting Princess Almah to retake this town, I do not think that she is a strong supporter of slavery. I cannot say for sure, but I do not believe that there are any slaves in her camp. She may treat some of her servants as though they are slaves, but considering her noble upbringing, this is not surprising. I believe that she said she actually hails from some land north of the Inner Sea, but I could not be sure about this.
Our goal is not to create a new inland slave route, as you know, I was to be sold as a slave before I escaped and you rescued me. Likewise, my companion Faelar is vehemently opposed to slavery.
Either way, what is done is done. Kardswann is dead, now, we need to make sure that this town is secure. Do you know of any other threats that are here? Any more of these otherworldly div creatures? Or any more evil creatures with ties to the fey or the elemental planes?
Oh, and regarding Slow Idi, we sort of interfered with his arrival here. He had purchased an elf who was a friend of my companion Faelar. We tracked Slow Idi to some monument in the desert and there attacked his camp. We rescued and freed all his slaves and left him to fend on his own without his spellbook or equipment. I do not know whether he survived, but he will think twice about transacting in kidnapped elves again. Part of me wishes I had simply placed a bolt in his skull, unfortunately he surrendered and you raised me to honor the good. I could not participate in or condone executing someone who had surrendered.
Haleen gives a short laugh, "Well, at least you know how to deal with slavers. Let's hope this Almah is as you say."
"Other threats? Well, the Carrion King still rules Pale Mountain and is a definite threat to the region. I do not know of other div. Most genie-kind vanished from this area long ago. Kardswann somehow remained although twisted. My knowledge of the elemental spirits is limited, but I was never sure if the div served him or he served the div. I would like to know more. Now however, we must see how well this new princess serves the Pactmasters."
After listening to Haleen:
Do you think that it would be safe to bring her here? I have no interest in running this pack of misfits. And, do you know of any other places where things might be hiding. The princess has a few guards, but hers is not an army. In addition, there are a number of retainer and servants who are about as good at defending themselves as a fish is at swimming while in the desert.
Haleen shrugs at Kzrira's queries. "The gnolls were a lazy and superstitious lot. There is a waterfall a little way up stream that they say is haunted as well as an old monastery on the bluffs to the south and then of course a ruined shrine in the hills to the north, haunted. And the local ruined temple to Sarenrae over there, haunted. Probably my left shoe is haunted as well. Idiots."
"As for the Princess, I really don't care. I'll stay long enough to see how closely allied she is with the Pactmasters before I report. I just hope she is as enlightened as you say though I have my doubts."
Well, we have set up camp in the monastery after clearing it out. It had pugs, but really was haunted. We had to face off against some type of ghost of some genie from the plane of air if my recollection is correct. Karethas or Faelar could give you a better accounting. I just fought it, it was one tough bastard. But, it was protecting this bow. Not sure how powerful it is, but this shoots like nothing I have ever held, and as you know I worked with many bows and crossbows in Katapesh.
So, if the monastery really was haunted, then perhaps other div or undead inhabit these other places. We will have to check them out before bringing the princess in. I think that we should at least check out the rest of the temple before we bring in the Princess and her people. The Shrine and waterfall can wait until tomorrow.
Would like to join us, I have never seen you fight until yesterday, which I have to again thank you for saving me from that barbarian and his axe, I have never seen such strength.
I go back in with the others.
Haleen wishes to meet with the Princess and then report back to her superiors. I see no problem taking her there and letting her say her word. Then she can return to whoever she is working for. I still fear for her life, but after yesterday, it is clear that she is a much more skilled warrior than I knew, who knows what else I do not know about her.
Also, she says that the gnolls consider the temple, the monastery, some waterfall and some shrine all to be haunted. I think that we need to check them all out since we know that the monastery in fact was haunted by the dead genie. I say we check out the temple before returning to the Princess so that we have pretty much cleared out this area. We can then check the waterfall and shrine after.
Once we are finished with that, we have to figure out what to do next. My quest is done, I know that Haleen is safe, relatively so anyway. Thus, I am sort of without direction although I am learning to enjoy your companionship and would not mind continuing our quests. Haleen did speak of some Carrion King. I do not know who or what this is, but if he has influence over this area, that might be something to look into.
"Messing with dead things didn't go so well for us last time, perhaps better preparation is called for? Holy water, magical weapons, that sort of thing. Better yet, a Cleric!"
Auri seems a bit less than keen at the prospect of repeating what he seems to be deeming 'The Crypt Incident'.
"Well if the Temple is the building we couldn't penetrate, the Monastery is the one we already fought through, then there's only a waterfall and a shrine left to investigate. I am happy to fly aloft and examine the waterfall from the safety of the skies, and should I find anything of interest I can come and lead you all via as safe a path as I can determine..."
OK Auri takes the ring, I assume we each take 1kgp as well?
Being the muscles of the group (Str 12), I can carry the coins for you Auri since I assume a Tiny dragon probably does not want 1000 coins jingling from a bag tied around his neck.
Scouting would be good. But, I wonder what is beyond that portal. Perhaps we should go and check it again.
Nah hes going to spunk the lot on beer and hookers for sure.
"I will remain up and out of harms way, and return swiftly once I have slown to the waterfall and back..."
Auri takes off to the skies, heading towards this waterfall. His intention is to find a relatively safe path to it, and to observe the area from a distance for any signs of creatures, living or dead.
When I awake I start to continue writing my novel, but upon Kzrira's entry I look up as she mentions more haunted places, "More poor, lost souls to help find their way then." I finish my paragraph and put my book and quill down.
"I think we should clear out that Temple, but how would we get through the door, I was hoping Kardswann would have the key. Maybe it is in the ruined shrine ... " I look up as if an idea has sprung into my mind, " ... I have to tell Undra that she is completely free from Kardswann now ... maybe she knows how to get in the locked door or knows where the key is? I should go and talk with her."
With that I start to pack my things up and watch Auri fly out to scout, if the others stop me from leaving I will remain and complete some more of my book, if not then I will go and see Undra.
Profession (Scribe) : 1d20 + 7 ⇒ (15) + 7 = 22 (Just for writing my book, even if it is the short amount before leaving.)
Lets go guys, I like the elf and would prefer that he not run into some hiding archer while his nose is in a book.
I grab my bow and equipment and follow Faelar back down to the tannery.
Perception: 1d20 + 8 ⇒ (6) + 8 = 14 <-- carefully scouting and watching for any threats.
It is still early as you leave and none of the businesses are yet open. You pass through the now unattended gates from the upper village to the lower and all is still as you cross the river to the tannery where Undra dwells. At Faelar's knock, the woman comes to the door eyes inquisitive above her veils.
Further upstream, Auri soars above the cascades on the look out for signs of life or otherwise.
I knock upon the door, feeling safe that there are no threats about. When I see the door open slightly and Undra peer around, I speak up. "Greetings and good day; my dear lady, how do you fare on this most wonderful of days? I would like to inform you, that you are now ... truly free and you do not have to worry about Kardswann mistreating you again. He has read his last book, he has written his last word and spoken his last command. I hope that this pleases you, I do however have a couple of other matters to discuss with you. Firstly, Her Royal Highness Almah shall be attending the town soon and she has agreed to let you stay, also I wish to ask you a question if you would be so kind as to answer me ... do you know of the locked door in the temple and how we would be able to pass through it?"
Diplomacy : 1d20 + 11 ⇒ (20) + 11 = 31
|Karethas ibn Faradin|
As the group discusses their plans Karethas nods and adds, I don't feel like we really took the time to examine that door because we wanted to get to the battle market. After gathering what information we can, I don't think it would be a waste of time to go have another look. Maybe after we check out the waterfall and shrine."
Upon hearing the news, Undra throws herself upon Faelar. Even the thick robes cannot conceal the warm, well formed body beneath. She quickly regains her composure stepping back and leaving Falear 'at attention'.
"I am sorry, I forgot myself. Thank you, my lord. I am as always deeply indebted to you and yours to command though I have nothing to offer one so powerful and wise."
She starts a little when Faelar asks about the warded door in the Temple. "Oh, you mustn't go beneath the Temple. The Priests of Abadar who came with the Pactmaster Guards all those years ago sealed foul Halruun down there. I do not think he can still survive, but he was an evil man and who knows what lingers in the vaults."
I stand somewhat shocked at Undra's sudden show of affection or relief, "Qilue..." It takes me a second or 2 to regather my composure, "You owe me nothing, I helped free someone from the bonds of slavery and for that, I am rewarded enough. So Halruun is down there, well I would like to lay his spirit to rest so that he can stop tormenting trapped souls. That is if he is still alive, if he is not then this should be easy. Do not worry; my dear, we shall be careful and safe. But if you do know how to get passed the door, I would appreciate your information very greatly."
So, the murderer Halruun was trapped in the temple. It seems only fitting that the crazed, or evil, priest would be trapped in his own perverted temple. The questing is, what is the key to open the door.
Kzrira turns and looks at the mage:
Karethas, do you think that we have something that would be the key? Perhaps my bow or Amir's new axe? Or something else? A ring? A wand? Anything?
If not, then I suppose we need to investigate this shrine and the waterfall. I am sure that one of them will hold the key.
Undra shakes head. "I am glad I do not know so that you will not further risk your life, Beautiful One. I would think only the Pactmasters or the priests of the Vault Keeper would hold the key."
Aurichalcum soars through the cooling mists that arise from the double stream of falling water. Suddenly, his sharp eyes catch a form resting in a pool below. A transparent woman reclines against a rock in the turbulent water unaware of the dragonette above.
give me stealth if you want a better look.
I do not think it was either the packmasters or the priests of Abadar who locked him up. More likely, it was someone tied with the elements. Still, the question is what is the key. I think we should get back to the town and see what Auri has discovered. Then we can make our decisions.
Auri maintains his air space, remembering his promise to keep his height and distance and not get into trouble. He notes the nature of the woman and her location before slowly wheeling around and returning to report to his friends.
"Not sure what the transparent lady is, could be a ghost, of a genii, or anything...all we know is that she is there and we needs be cautious."
"The Priests of the Vault Keeper?" I rub my chin in thought, seeing the term means anything to me. I then turn to Kzrira, "Yes, letus return to our mighty companion."
I turn to leave and as I get to the door I turn back, smile and wave to Undra.
What Knowledge check would I have to roll to learn about the Vault Keeper?
Ah, cool. I don't know many of the common names for the Gods. I only know "The Dawnflower" and "The Elk Father", now I know another :)
Once Auri has informed us of his adventure, I will inform him of ours. "So, should we look at this door again and see if there is a way past it, or go to this waterfall and shrine? I would like to go to the Shrine, as there may be some valuable reading material there. Also if it is an old Shrine to Abadar, then the key may be hidden there somewhere."
I wonder who, or more likely what, this woman by the waterfall is. I would prefer not leaving possible enemies free to roam the area. But, we also definitely need to investigate the shrine as well.
|Karethas ibn Faradin|
"I'd feel better going to the waterfall first. There maybe more need of specialized spells or creatures there. Then let's go to the shrine, since it may contain something we could use in the temple. That leaves the temple for last of course. We may even want to try the temple tomorrow after reporting to Almah."
Sounds fair. Actually, I was thinking that we could send Auri back to tell the Princess that the town has been fairly well cleared. But it just dawned on me that she might try to make him into a hat or necklace or pet or something. I suppose that we will have to go back after we are done here.