The commander speaks in a low hum, "The power of Deskari will crush you." A deathly pale violet flame surrounds his hand as he reaches out to grab Glenda.
Touch attack: 1d20 + 5 ⇒ (6) + 5 = 11
Touch of Corruption Damage: 2d6 ⇒ (1, 2) = 3
DC 15 Fort save or Sickened for 4 rounds
The spider moves toward Dasur, attempting to draw him into its fangs and failing.
Spider Attack: 1d20 + 6 ⇒ (5) + 6 = 11
Fort save: 1d20 + 4 ⇒ (14) + 4 = 18
Glenda takes the corrupting touch and shrugs it off like nothing more than the sting of a gnat.
Glenda rounds about on the drow with her hammer, her eyes wide and without fear.
Hammer time, blessed: 1d20 + 3 + 1 ⇒ (13) + 3 + 1 = 17
Warhammer damage: 1d8 + 1 ⇒ (2) + 1 = 3
The gnashing spider skitters towards an unfliching Dasur, and he merely steps out of the way as it lunges towards him.
Confident his magical force projections will prevent the spider's attacks from finding purchase, he stands his ground and baits the creature into attacking him further with a wave of his staff.
The true threat still stands, however. Without taking his eyes off the spider, Dasur asks the stone to aid Glenda's valiant efforts with a stomp of his foot. Cracks surge from where his boot touches the ground and speed towards the Drow, opening up fissures beaneath the commander with a deadly hiss.
The dark elf's beautiful mithril armor offers no protection from the acidic vapors pouring from the ground, burning his mouth, lungs, and eyes.
Standard Action: Use Acid Cloud ability on the square containing the Drow Commander. DC 17 Fortitude save for half damage or full damage plus sickened for 1 round
acid cloud damage: 1d6 + 1 ⇒ (5) + 1 = 6
I didn't realize this before, but Dasur's Acid Cloud is a supernatural ability. Thus it is not subject spell resistance and it does not provoke an AoO when cast in a threatened space.
Growling low in her throat at the miss and then a sharp pain blossoms in her belly. Glancing down to see red before the world goes dark.
con check to stabilize: 1d20 + 2 ⇒ (6) + 2 = 8
Somehow it didn't occur to me that Regnir would disappear when Nalnera went down. You have done such a good job distinguishing the two of them that I was thinking of them as separate characters. I don't think it likely that Nalnera will die in this encounter, but if she did it would be awesome if Regnir attached himself to someone else. Possessed a dead gnome or something.
Damiel, commander of an orc army, finally feels the fullness of his failure here.What do I have to lose..., he thinks. He has lost his command. Been defeated by a rabble of gnomes with surface dwarves leading them. At least, he thinks, he will take away their heart.
He thrusts his flaming hand not at Glenda or Iverna, the most imminent threats, but at Geirni.
Provoking attacks of opportunity from Glenda and Iverna as he coups Geirni
Coup damage: 4d6 ⇒ (6, 1, 5, 1) = 13 Contingent on him surviving the AoO, obviously.
Iverna attack: 1d20 + 6 ⇒ (14) + 6 = 20
sneak attack damage: 1d4 + 1d6 ⇒ (2) + (1) = 3
The spider continues to attack Dasur.
spider attack: 1d20 + 6 ⇒ (4) + 6 = 10
Spider continues to miss
The orc who had been attacking Nalnera decides she is not as important as his commander and moves to attack those attacking him. Takes a double move to get to Dasur, so no attack.
Con save to stabilize: 1d20 + 2 - 2 ⇒ (18) + 2 - 2 = 18 I'm not dead yet!
Slow ragged breaths shudder out of bloody lips and the lingering dead trapping in her head continues to scream at her and is for once completely ignored. Nalnera! Nalnera! Whelp wake up!
GM, did the Drow commander make his fort save vs acid cloud?
Dasur once again sidesteps the spider's clumsy attacks, baiting it into awkwardly lunging with his staff. The wizard turns his head as he hears the heavy-booted running of an orc straight towards him. Nalnera or Regnir have fallen?
Taking a step back, he reaches into his spell component pouch for a handful of sand as he summons the last of his arcane reserves.
A moment too late Dasur notices the Drow commander reaching for the downed body of the Deep Gnome King.
A moment too late he remembers to compensate for the Drow's natrual spell resistance. Ah! Infuse the pattern energies parallel to their positive energy flow instead of perpendicular!
A moment too late the arcane words spill from his lips, blasting the perhaps statisfied minds of the Drow and Orc.
5' step Southwest
Standard action: Cast Color Spray, 15' cone from northeast corner of Dasur's square. Can't draw the boxes on my phone but it would hit the Drow and Orc while leaving everyone else uneffected. DC 16 Will save to resist.
caster check vs Drow spell resistance: 1d20 + 2 ⇒ (18) + 2 = 20
1d6 ⇒ 3
Warhammer, blessed: 1d20 + 3 + 1 ⇒ (8) + 3 + 1 = 12
Glenda futilely swings her hammer again, unable to do anything useful.
Iverna attack: 1d20 + 5 ⇒ (16) + 5 = 21
Iverna damage: 1d4 + 1d6 ⇒ (4) + (2) = 6
Iverna continues her attempt to upstage the party and appear to be a mega DMPC.
Gorgus realizes that he is in danger, and decides to exercise the better part of valor. He retreats. Drawing attacks of opportunity from Glenda and Iverna.
Dasur is out of spells, has no useful scrolls, and the drow is out of range of his acid cloud. I don't think we can do anything to catch him unless Glenda has something. Or Iverna is spring-loaded.
Unfortunately, outrunning dwarfs is an effectve strategy...
Dasur searches hs mind for a way to stop the Drow as he watches the commander begin to feel on foot. But he was exhausted, and could come up with nothing.
Instead he focuses on bringing down the spider that still posed a threat.
5' step northeast
Standard Action: Dasur casts Acid Cloud on the spider, DC 17 fort save for half damage, or full damage plus Sickened for 1 round.
acid cloud: 1d6 + 1 ⇒ (2) + 1 = 3
Glenda lets out a low growl that rises to a scream of outrage as she charges the drow, shoulder-first.
Overrun, blessed, charging: 1d20 + 2 + 1 + 2 ⇒ (11) + 2 + 1 + 2 = 16
This provokes an AoO from the drow; my AC is 16 because of charging. If I beat his CMD by 5, he's knocked prone. Probably doesn't work because I suck at everything, but oh well.
Touch of Corruption vs Glenda: 1d20 + 5 ⇒ (14) + 5 = 19
Touch of Corruption Damage: 2d6 ⇒ (4, 5) = 9
DC 15 Fortitude save or Sickened
The drow screams curses in Elven, cursing Glenda and interloper dwarves. He lashes out again with the dark fire, negative energy ripping through Glenda's life force. Then he continues on, side-stepping Glenda.Provoking another attack of opportunity.
The spider balks at being acid bombed, recoiling from the vapors and moving away. Also provoking attacks.
Iverna moves to investigate Geirni, not interested in pursuing the retreating foes.
Fort save, dwarf bonus vs. magic: 1d20 + 4 + 2 ⇒ (3) + 4 + 2 = 9
AoO, sickened: 1d20 + 3 + 1 - 2 ⇒ (19) + 3 + 1 - 2 = 21
Glenda looks green, but still manages to smash her hammer into the drow.
Warhammer damage: 1d8 + 1 ⇒ (6) + 1 = 7
"Drop your weapons and quit the field of battle" I did it, you slimy half-breed lurid son of a strumpet!
Exact words woven into magic release Snorri from the compulsion as soon as the condition is met. An untold rage fills him as he sprints back towards the battlefield, running as fast as his short dwarven legs allow, and grabbing one of the javelins carried on his back.
Full round run action coming back to the battlefield. Free to draw a javelin.
Dasur takes a wild swing at the spider when it begins to skitter backwards, but the wooden dowel only meets air.
Chasing after the deadly arachnid, he runs a short way before slamming his staff into the ground and opening up another pocket of acrid vapors in the spider's face.
AoO vs spider, bless, earth supremacy bonus: 1d20 + 1 + 1 + 1 ⇒ (3) + 1 + 1 + 1 = 6 Whifff
AoO damage, bless, Earth Supremacy: 1d6 + 1 + 1 ⇒ (2) + 1 + 1 = 4
One of the stranger Earth Elementalist bonuses is the Earth Supremacy special ability; the caster gets +1 to melee attack and damage rolls if both the caster and the foe are touching the ground. Bizzare for a wizard, but I'll take it.
Move action: 20' move.
Standard Action: Cast Acid cloud on the spider again, DC 17 fort save for half damage, or full damage and sickened for 1 round.
acid cloud damage: 1d6 + 1 ⇒ (4) + 1 = 5
The spider's exoskeleton cracks under the assault of the corrosive gas, leaking cloudy fluid onto the ground before the spider collapses under its own weight. While it continues to twitch, it will be doing no more harm to anyone.
Glenda's hammer connects with the drow commander's face, and the dark elf drops to the ground, lifeless.
Unless I am misremembering a coup, none of the orcs, drow, or spider, are actually dead, but all unconscious and dying. If you wanted to take prisoners, that would certainly be an option. We can drop out of initiative, in any case. Don't forget to get Nalnera back on her feet.
We did it!!! Glenda, that was a miraculous AoO at the end there...
Now we just have a devastated and destabilized gnome population to deal with.
Dasur watches the spider carefully as it twitches, convinced he is seeing the throes of death. He turns his head towards Glenda, expecting to witness the Drow Commander's escape, but all he sees if the priestess standing over the prone Dark Elf's body.
Turning on his heel the wizard quickly surveys the battleground, and doesn't see anything killing anyone. Taking a deep breath, he exhales. It is done.
A quick look at the ground and he spots the previously unseeable Nalnera, her body on the edge of the mists. A whisk of his hand closes the tiny portals to the elemental plane of water peppered throughout the ground, and the mist disappears.
"Glenda! Nalnera needs aid when you have a moment." Dasur says casually, walking over to the unconscious orc whose mind was fried moments ago. Lifting his staff, Dasur brings the oak rod down on its head repeatedly in an attempt to kill the beast.
"Iverna, how is Lord Geirni?" He asks between the hard, wet thwaps of his staff bouncing off the orc's skull.
Battered and bloodied, Glenda looks up as Dasur calls out to her. Then she leans down to touch the drow commander and says, "Not yet. You have miles to go before you sleep."
Then she rushes to Nalnera's side and likewise, with a simple caress, prevents the shadow of death from overtaking her.
Once the dwarfs have a chance to assemble and move all of the corpses and prisoners, she takes the opportunity to channel more healing energy to awaken their fallen without inadvertently healing the foes.
Channel energy: Heal: 1d6 ⇒ 3
Channel energy: Heal: 1d6 ⇒ 4
You. Are. All. Awesome. You're getting so many knighthoods when we get back.
And I'm assuming Geirni is dead, a DC 23 Fort save is hard, even with their racial +2, but I'll be happy if proven wrong.
Late. I was late. Curse my weak mind, I was useless once again. How am I worthy of the crown when I can't lead into battle?
Guilt and worry on his face, Snorri rushes towards the unconscious forms of Nalnera and Geirni "No, no, no, no, Earth Immortal, let it not be blood of my blood spilled..."
He sighs in relief seeing Nalnera's chest heave with air intake and the sealed wounds, then turns to the brave gnome's tiny body. I'm sorry. I should have warned you to stand back, that it was dangerous... But I didn't want to belittle your pride. Rest well, Geirni, lord of Fasturvalt. Today you stood taller than me.
Wordlessly, grief and remorse turning into bitter violence, Snorri moves to the place his axe had found, checking the edge for dents before sharply turning and bringing it down heavily on the neck of the orc laying stunned. The one forced into sleep by his own magic soon follows. Black, acrid blood sprays over dark stone and steel armor, joining that from the earlier battle.
Coup de grace 1: 3d8 + 9 ⇒ (5, 2, 2) + 9 = 18
Coup de grace 2: 3d8 + 9 ⇒ (2, 8, 1) + 9 = 20
Geirni is indeed dead or, as Iverna notes
"Well, Snorri, let's just say he isn't going to be making any more stupid decisions."
As our dwarven heros stride about the field, making sure that their foes are taken care of, something swells within the svirfneblin. They move so silently that you fail to notice them before they are upon you, standing in clumps only 20 feet or so from where Nalnera sits, gathering her wits about you. With a similar silence, Tamar Even-the-Stones-Listen steps out from crowd, striding toward Snorri, through striding on such tiny legs still covers little ground. He uses his pick as a sort of walking stick, but in his left hand he carries something else, another hafted weapon.
Finding Snorri on the field, the aged gnome slowly bends his knee before Snorri, holding up the weapon.
"Lord Snorri, today has fallen the last scion of the House of Geirni, leaving none to rule here in Fasturvalt. Your strength, wisdom, and determination, and that of your kin, has brought us through this day. We would ask that you would accept the rulership of our modest town, counting us as your loyal subjects. As a symbol of your dominion, we would offer you this dolabra, crafted by your own people and carried by many gnomish heroes."
The weapon is a medium sized dolabra, an ancient sort of pickaxe.
Wake up you useless thing! Sucking in a deep gasping breath, "I'm up!"
Looking around at the group standing around her and then laying back down as everything starts spinning. You looked like a fool. Groaning and running a dirty hand over her face, "I hate you."
Letting her hand fall to ground near her head, "Are they gone?"
Dasur is thankful when Snorri comes along to finish off the orc he was brutalizing. Wood only seemed to bounce of the beast's unnaturally thick skull.
Hearing of Lord Geirni's death, the wizard pauses, followed by a full-on freezing of his body. Several moments pass where he does not move, lost in his own thoughts.
I have been passively looking for ways to predict the future by measuring the rate of change in highly ordered crystal structures, comparing the estimated times of change to major past events, and then extrapolating forward. But I am consistently at the epicenter of events that change the fates of generations.
The epiphany strikes Dasur harder than a Dwarven catapult. He sits down on a nearby mushroom and nearly rips open his belt pouch, extracting a multitude of small, precious gems from within. Hands shaking, he selects a dark green tourmaline and holds it up. In his other hand a cool ball of floating light appears, and he peers through the crystal with the magical light on the other side.
The refractive patterns of tourmaline S-14 and the Flowstone have been completely documented in my notes. By actively monitoring this crystal during the inevitable changes following Lord Geirni's death and comparing them to my measurements of the Flowstone, which is highly attuned to Deep Gnome's history and ancestory, I can correlate the changes in the Flowstone with that of an average hexagonal mineral structure...
To everyone else it looks like Dasur is completely ignoring everything around him, frantically digging through his pack and setting up the light-focusing brass instruments he carries on his person. A pattern of green light projects from a gem onto a parchment from the magical light source held in his hand, and he stares intently at its various lines.
He notices Tamar approach Snorri and the Wizard's eyes widen to the size of a wagon wheel. Yes! This is it! I must capture this exact moment!
Listening intently for Snorri's decision, Dasur is hunkered over the parchment with quill in a shaking hand, ready to trace the exact moment that their liege makes a decision that will change the future of the gnomes forever. Dasur says nothing to Snorri- to speak would directly influence the experiment and taint the results.
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Snorri's face shows surprise and some internal conflicts, as he weighs his own guilt with the prospect of ruling Fasturvalt.
I was sent away! I lost to a spell! But had the spell been fire, would I had blamed myself for my body to fall, rather than my mind? And I let him go into battle unexperienced! But then again, it had to be his decision alone.
It is not the point here, though. Fasturvalt is a nice place, but it is not home. Not the home we are searching for, home for all of our kin. And I am sure the others will agree.
The dwarf bows his head as he places a hand on the bizzarre weapon. "I am honored and humbled by the offer, Tamar Even-The-Stones-Listen. But I can't possibly accept this honor."
"Our quest leads us far from Fasturvalt, deep into the Lower Azathyr, towards our ancestral home of Dammerhall. It would not be right to take on the mantle of your leader only to abandon you in short time. You shall always be our friends, but it is fair that deep gnomes rule over deep gnomes and dwarves rule over dwarves."
A Dwarven King is born, not raised... Blood, prophecy and kin. How should it be among deep gnomes? I doubt that Iverna would want to rule.
"If you have no rightful ruler, perhaps you should choose among yourselves by skill, rather than birth? I must admit I am not certain what your traditions may require in this case."
Tamar's chin rises slowly to point toward Snorri as his thin arms lower the dolabra to the spongy fungal floor. His oversized svirfneblin eyes grow even larger in his surprise. The ancient gnome had been sure that these dwarves were their salvation.
"L-l-lord Snorri, I apologize for my impertinence. It should have been obvious that your quest would not accommodate remaining here among us." He rises slowly to his feet, using his own pick as a sort of cane. "Of course, you will all be tired and in need of rest and refreshment. We will tend our wounded and rest ourselves. Please avail yourselves of the comforts of Lord Geirni's Hall, and take from his treasury whatever would be of use to you on your continued journeys. As you say, we will find our own way."
The aged gnome seems somehow more wizened, deflated from the strength that had been in his small frame. As your gazes follow him back to his people, the other gnomes seem deflated, and you realize that the room had been buzzing, and that now the humming string of anticipation has been cut.
Still, you have saved a people, defeated and humiliated your enemies, and won the day.
As the gnomes depart, you notice that Iverna is carefully stripping Geirni of his armor, gear, and clothing.
Erebos is nowhere to be seen.
"You have proven to be true friends to dwarf-kind, and our causes are intermingled," says Glenda after the buzzing dies down a bit. "We will keep the faith and protect you as we can, and aid you as we may, though our quest may take us far from your walls. You have shown us many kindnesses and we hope that you will accept that while we will always fight by your side, it is never our desire to make you our servants."
Dasur begins to rapidly sketch the defracton patterns on the parchment as Snorri speaks, and by the time the exchange has finished the wizard is the proud owner of a mass of incomprehensible lines.
Leaning back, he wipes some sweat from his brow. This could be a breakthrough- a link been the present and future. I must check the numbers immediately.
He glances at the leaving gnomes, folding his hands in his lap. The battle was hard on them. The road ahead will be harder still.
To one of the passing gnomes he asks: "Tell me, where is Erebos? For I much desire to speak with him."
Snorri watches the gnomes move away. I'm sorry I wasn't the saviour you hoped for.
After helping Nalnera up, he gazes over the battlefield, heading towards the fallen drow, removing the precious, silvery bounty of the Earth from his body.
"Mithril from the Azathyr, few metals can be called equal. If we smelt it, we could have enough metal to outfit us all."
The orcs can feed the mushrooms, for all I care.
"What will you do, Iverna? I would appreciate your company, but I'll understand if you want to remain home to rebuild."
Glenda smacks the haft of her Dammerhall warhammer into her hand a few times, then says, "Even mithral was not enough to stop Dammerhall."
To one of the passing gnomes he asks: "Tell me, where is Erebos? For I much desire to speak with him."
The gnome startles, not expecting to be addressed. "When Geirni was-was struck down, Erebos fled from the battle. I think I saw him running up the stairs toward the Lord's Hall..."