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The Pact Stone Pyramid (Inactive)

Game Master Pact Stone GM

A Pathfinder Module, converted from 3.5 to the Pathfinder system, with a party of level 7.


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Male Dwarf Cleric 8

Did we gain XP for bagging Deca? I will refresh my spell list from resting later tonight and post further.

Hal says a silent prayer to Angradd for the departed Jason.


Halstadt Morgrym wrote:

Did we gain XP for bagging Deca?

Oh yes - I'll post that in the Discussion thread.


Gandel wrote:
Well, we do have Hurgah... ;)

Point taken.


OK, how about I see if I can run roughshod, cover some logistics and speed events up here. I’ll try to incorporate everything posted. If there’s any revisions or objections, let me know.

  • All of the minute per round buffs expire. Moonpate's elemental departs.

  • The party encamps on the opposite side of the oasis that the battle took place.

  • The spellcasters sleep/pray/prepare – Donkor regains his spells at midnight. Halstadt, Gandel, Hurgah and Moonpate regain theirs in the morning. I’d appreciate it if the non-spontaneous types (Donkor, Moon and Hal) would please update their spell selections in their profiles.

  • You are able to recover Jason’s wand of endure elements. Henceforth I will assume Gandel has it and is distributing charges to those who need it every morning via UMD – I’ll let you know when it runs out.

  • Hurgah, Gandel, Breach, Karek handle the watch shifts. It’s tough going as the hydra-fire messes with your vision and makes everything look darker. There’s also the issue of the smell of burnt hydra, though it’s actually not nearly as bad as you expected. They do not sleep well, but there is no game effect – they’re pretty tough travelers.

  • Breach spends part of the night digging Jason a really deep grave. It’s at the outer edge of the oasis, about 150 feet from the water. He hunts around for a suitable stone to use as a marker.

  • Watch is uneventful, save for around 2:00 in the morning there’s a ruckus as a bunch of you suddenly resumes their normal size. Gandel and Donkor grow; Karek, Hal and Breach all shrink. Faren’s final gift has expired. If you have size or attribute bonuses mixed in your profiles, please remove as appropriate.

  • Shortly after dawn, there’s a burial for Jason. Donkor casts gentle repose and the body is lowered into the hole. Apart from the giant irregular circle of blackened hydra ashes, the oasis is actually a beautiful spot, not half bad for a final resting place for a Pathfinder.

  • The party then strikes out, heading what they believe is south, in order to return to the dig site. Gandel still has his map. Moonpate circulates a warning that the splicer beast is still out there. He doesn’t know how it is that they haven’t been found yet.


  • Male Human Wizard Level 8 - Conjurer
    Pact Stone GM wrote:

  • The party then strikes out,...
  • Many thanks for expediting the evening, not attacking us, and sprinkling some hefty experience points around. One of my ideas to get us back to our mission in a pronto fashion is to memorize six "Mount" spells and summon up some trusty steeds for the Dune Squad.

    I assume we will have had a strategery session whilst making camp, to coordinate spell selection and how the heck we can disrupt the dig site. Some ideas:

    1) Frontal assault: the Potentate is somewhat drunk on visions of glory after their handling of Deca-Jaws and imagines riding in like the Magnificent Seven with spells a blazin' and Hurgah a chompin'. The dark looks he gets from the dour dwarves sobers him up right nice.

    2) Prepare a bunch of summon critter and area effect spells.

    3) Try to be stealthy, though Moon does not have much in the way of spells for that.

    4) Get close to the camp, do some recon and maybe send a strike team.

    5) Somebody else think of something.


    Male Human Wizard Level 8 - Conjurer

    Also, how should we divvy up Jason's gear...with all humble respect to the recently, heroically departed?


    Male Halfling Bard (Archivist) 6 / Pathfinder Delver 2

    While the Dune Squad camps, Gandel attempts to identify the seven pieces of jewelry that radiate magical auras.

    Spellcraft check Item #1: 1d20 + 13 ⇒ (11) + 13 = 24
    Spellcraft check Item #2: 1d20 + 13 ⇒ (19) + 13 = 32
    Spellcraft check Item #3: 1d20 + 13 ⇒ (1) + 13 = 14
    Spellcraft check Item #4: 1d20 + 13 ⇒ (1) + 13 = 14
    Spellcraft check Item #5: 1d20 + 13 ⇒ (2) + 13 = 15
    Spellcraft check Item #6: 1d20 + 13 ⇒ (3) + 13 = 16
    Spellcraft check Item #7: 1d20 + 13 ⇒ (2) + 13 = 15

    EDIT: Well those are some crappy rolls! Gandel will hit #6 and #7 with Gallant Inspiration:

    Total Spellcraft check Item #6 w/ Gallant Inspiration: 16 + 2d4 ⇒ 16 + (4, 2) = 22
    Total Spellcraft check Item #7 w/ Gallant Inspiration: 15 + 2d4 ⇒ 15 + (3, 1) = 19

    With respect to Jason's gear, as Pact Stone GM said Gandel will offer to hold onto the Wand of Endure Elements, which he can activate by taking 10 on the UMD check. That leaves

    the following items:
    Headband of Alluring Charisma +2
    Cloak of Resistance +2
    Ring of Protection +1
    Handy Haversack
    Rod of Metamagic [Focused] Used 0 times
    Wand of Cure Light Wounds 50 charges
    Wand of Endure Elements 46 charges
    Wand of Protection from Evil 50 charges
    2 Scroll of Lesser Restoration
    Scroll of Knock
    Scroll of See Invisibility
    Scroll of Fly
    Scroll of Fireball
    Scroll of Daylight
    2 Scroll of Dispel Magic
    Dagger
    Light Crossbow w/10 bolts
    50' hemp rope
    Belt pouch
    Torch
    Flint & steel
    Tindertwig
    Waterskin
    5 sheets parchment
    Ink & inkpen
    Chalk
    Vial [empty]
    Scroll case
    2 Alchemist's Fire
    2 Wrist sheaths
    Everburning Torch
    Antiplague
    Antitoxin

    If no one minds, Gandel could use the Headband of Alluring Charisma +2.


    Male Dwarf Barbarian (Breaker) 8

    Hooray for mounts! This should get us right back on track! I guess Gandel can ride sidesaddle with somebody? Or Hurgah runs?

    For a plan of attack, and make no mistake that's what we're left with, some combination of options 2-4 of Moonpate's numbers will be what we should do. Does anybody have, like, a Rope Trick we can hang out in between raids?

    I support first scouting to find out what looks important, then sending hordes of summons to do our dirty work first. We can show up, in groups of two or three to do some critical attack. Earth Elementals could be invaluable, coming out of the ground to wreak havoc and returning from whence they came.

    We also may have allies in the camp. In addition to whoever may be working for the Pathfinders (at least one person, right?), the Sand Sage isn't very sympathetic towards the monks. Perhaps a secret envoy to him might have some success.

    Finally, Jason's stuff. Karek doesn't have much use for Jason's equipment, being emphatically not a spellcaster. He will take the Handy Haversack in memorium, unless somebody has a great use for it. He won't mind carrying some of the one-shot items, like the Antitoxin or Alchemist's Fire, as those always have a use.


    Male Human Wizard Level 8 - Conjurer
    Gandel wrote:

    While the Dune Squad camps, Gandel attempts to identify the seven pieces of jewelry that radiate magical auras.

    With respect to Jason's gear, as Pact Stone GM said Gandel will offer to hold onto the Wand of Endure Elements, which he can activate by taking 10 on the UMD check. That leaves ** spoiler omitted **
    [ooc]If no one minds, Gandel could use the Headband of Alluring Charisma +2.

    Can Moon help with the identifying? He also has a scroll of Identify if needed.

    As for Jason's gear, Moon could use the scrolls and the ring of protection (unless it does not stack with his bracers of armor). The metamagic rod of Focused should go to someone who uses more spells that the help in DC would be appreciated. Moon has some of those spells, but perhaps the clerics might have more use for it. What do you think, fellow spell slingers?


    Male Dwarf Cleric 8

    Metamagic wand makes more sense for Donkoor.


    Male Human Cleric/8

    I'll refrain from trying to claim any of Jason's equipment due to the discussion going on in the other thread. However it does occur to me that a substantial portion of Thalia's stuff should also be in the sack, and possibly up for grabs? She was also a player drop-out though, so I'm not sure.

    My only outstanding issues are: Can we/do we want to send a message to the venture captain? Is my decanter growing? And the identifying of magic that you guys are all over.


    Male Dwarf Cleric 8

    I may be able to cst sending to the Venture Captain I have to check the spell list, this week has been ultra busy but I should be able to get to it tonight. I am not claiming any equipment either.


    Male Dwarf Barbarian (Breaker) 8

    I've been analyzing options for what we can do when we get back to the encampment. Expect a very long post analyzing several different angles of that question.

    In the mean time, yes, absolutely. We need to get a sending to the Venture Captain so he knows specifically why he needs to be disappointed with us. Sending is a 4th-level spell on the cleric list, so we have that option.

    I can't wait to see what 25 words you use to describe what we have done.


    Karek Kogan wrote:
    I can't wait to see what 25 words you use to describe what we have done.

    That was hysterical. You know, if you guys need help, Moonpate is pretty good with his Haiku's and those are only 17 syllables.


    Donkor Sooron wrote:
    My only outstanding issues are: . . . Is my decanter growing? . . .

    Yes, but it looks like a long road yet. Based on the progress so far Donkor projects he's got a few days to go still.


    Male Human Wizard Level 8 - Conjurer
    Halstadt Morgrym wrote:
    I may be able to cst sending to the Venture Captain I have to check the spell list, this week has been ultra busy but I should be able to get to it tonight. I am not claiming any equipment either.

    Not sure what we could accomplish with a Sending.


    Gandel wrote:

    While the Dune Squad camps, Gandel attempts to identify the seven pieces of jewelry that radiate magical auras. . .

    Thanks for this. Because they are a set, I'll only need a single Spellcraft check arising from his casting of detect magic. I'm having trouble envisioning how he can solve some but not others - this will make sense when I reveal what they are. I'll take his first roll of 24 total. That's not enough, but I then add his +6 from his first gallant inspiration roll. That will put him over the top.

    -
    I'll post the results on this later, but no identify is necessary. Gandel has it covered.


    Male Human Wizard Level 8 - Conjurer
    Pact Stone GM wrote:
    Karek Kogan wrote:
    I can't wait to see what 25 words you use to describe what we have done.
    That was hysterical. You know, if you guys need help, Moonpate is pretty good with his Haiku's and those are only 17 syllables.

    Is that a challenge? How about this:

    Betrayal and loss
    Dune Squad bites where ten jaws snap
    S&+@ake happens

    Edit: I see the Paizo filters don't like certain mushrooms.


    Male Dwarf Barbarian (Breaker) 8
    Moonpate wrote:
    Not sure what we could accomplish with a Sending.

    The way I see it, we have three bits of information that the Venture Captain needs to know right away. First, Thalia betrayed us. He may need to act on that. And remember, that b!tch can convince anybody of anything. We have no idea of what she's been up to. It could even be her trying to convince him that everybody else defected, or something like that.

    Second, Jason is dead. He may have contingencies, plans or condolences to act on.

    Finally, we have been delayed. Hopefully, he can use that to inform his spies in the camp. If Hoffenburrow is expecting us, things could go south quickly.


    Male Half-orc Barbarian (Invulnerable Rager) 4 / Sorcerer 1/Dragon Disciple 3

    Might I remind people of the Pathfinder agent inside the camp...


    Hopefully this won’t distract too much from the useful strategy session which is currently ongoing. Here are the results from Gandel’s examination:
    ----------
    The Star Tribe Jewelry

    These seven pieces of Star Tribe jewelry are unique magic items. The knowledge of the technique of their creation has since been lost to the world. As such, the janni guard such pieces carefully, passing them down through generations as heirlooms. These are truly rare finds. But don’t thank me, thank Deca-Jaws for brutally slaying their former owners.

    Each piece manifests a different effect when worn by a different person. Generally the jewelry takes a specific attribute or ability from their bearer and enhances it in some way, minimizing a weakness or enhancing a strength in some way. The exact effect is personal: it always relates to the bearer’s personality or priorities.

    Despite their rarity and uniqueness, these particular pieces however, do not have particularly potent auras. Gandel does not expect anything earth shattering from them. He has heard legends of much more powerful pieces, equivalent of minor artifacts. These are not those. Nevertheless, the Professor is confident that the jewelry will be harmless at a minimum and likely quite beneficial. Failing that, surely they could be sold for a great deal.

    Another unique and impressive property the pieces have is that they do not take up an item slot, regardless of where worn. If it is a ring, it does not count towards your two maximum. If it is a circlet, it does not take up the head slot. Gandel’s best guess is that these treasures are so old they pre-date these now universal laws of magic.

    Also. . . they glow really pretty. But only when it’s convenient and impressive – like in combat or when spellcasting, not when you are making a stealth check.

    So who wants to go ahead and try one of these on? To do so, you have to make a post and describe the piece of jewelry you have selected. It can be anything you want, a nose ring, a toe ring, a manly arm band, as long as it’s a metallic piece of jewelry. Just remember, all seven pieces are different kinds of jewelry. So once someone posts “necklace”, necklace is gone. You need something materially different.

    Disclaimer: On reflection, I wasn’t able to balance these items nearly as well as I wanted – I focused on the quarks I wanted to highlight more than equivalent gp value. Some of these pieces are inevitably better than others. If you should turn out to be less lucky than your colleagues, just remember you are further ahead than you were before. It wasn’t meant to reward or penalize anyone – it’s just what I wrote down on a piece of paper.


    Donkor Sooron wrote:
    Oooh, perfect! I can totally picture Hurgah as a large Peter Stormare, with Scepter playing the role of Frances Mcdormand. We absolutely need to act out this scene!

    I oblige:

    "So that was Mrs. Lundegaard on the floor in there. And I guess that was your accomplice in the wood chipper. And those three people in Brainerd. And for what? For a little bit of money. There's more to life than a little money, you know. Don'tcha know that? And here ya are, and it's a beautiful day. Well. I just don't understand it."


    Male Human Wizard Level 8 - Conjurer
    Karek Kogan wrote:
    Moonpate wrote:
    Not sure what we could accomplish with a Sending.

    The way I see it, we have three bits of information that the Venture Captain needs to know right away. First, Thalia betrayed us. He may need to act on that. And remember, that b!tch can convince anybody of anything. We have no idea of what she's been up to. It could even be her trying to convince him that everybody else defected, or something like that.

    Second, Jason is dead. He may have contingencies, plans or condolences to act on.

    Finally, we have been delayed. Hopefully, he can use that to inform his spies in the camp. If Hoffenburrow is expecting us, things could go south quickly.

    Very good points.


    Male Human Wizard Level 8 - Conjurer
    Pact Stone GM wrote:

    Hopefully this won’t distract too much from the useful strategy session which is currently ongoing. Here are the results from Gandel’s examination:

    ----------
    The Star Tribe Jewelry

    Oooh, Moonpate could use a new belt (with cool looking aquaman style buckle) to help hold up his britches and accoutrements. Something with metallic (or otherworldly coral) hooks or rings spaced around his considerable girth.


    Male Dwarf Cleric 8

    Hal picks up a bracelet which is made for a slightly built female. The designs on the bracelet though are breathtaking matching the most beautiful mosaics seen in A'Viss. The substance seems to be made of coral but Hal is not entirely sure. It clearly will not fit around his wrist so instead the dwarf collects his wild beard and stuffs it through the opening. His large mass of hair easily secures the jewlery in place and gives Hal a touch of refinement. Well he thinks so anyway.

    "I will contact the Venture Captain", Hal casts Sending in the morning.

    Met Exemplar. Thalia betrayed us. Forced to flee. Belleson slain by DecaJaws. DecaJaws destroyed. Contact spy inform him we head back to dig. Any advice?


    Male Human Cleric/8

    Donkor finds himself drawn to a beautifully engraved lapis lazuli finger ring, which is inscribed with a distinctly aquatic motif which, while not exactly Pharasma's holy symbols, are definitely reminiscent of Her watery aspects. He takes the ring and puts it on, feeling peace and contentment that he is still enfolded in Her plan.

    Message sounds good to me. No mention anywhere of totally not Donkor messing things up, so it'll do.

    Sceptre wrote:
    "So that was Mrs. Lundegaard on the floor in there. And I guess that was your accomplice in the wood chipper. And those three people in Brainerd. And for what? For a little bit of money. There's more to life than a little money, you know. Don'tcha know that? And here ya are, and it's a beautiful day. Well. I just don't understand it."

    Thanks for that. And though it's a little out of order for the movie, Hurgah's line after getting bit by multiple hydra-heads (stoneskin or not) is "Unguent. I need unguent."


    Male Dwarf Barbarian (Breaker) 8

    After listening to the Professor's treatise on the nature of the jewelry, Karek inspects the pieces with interest and what appears to be professional detail. He picks up a heavy brooch with many different gems studded in the shape of an octopus, and uses it to pin down his damp cloak.


    Moonpate wrote:


    Oooh, Moonpate could use a new belt (with cool looking aquaman style buckle) to help hold up his britches and accoutrements. Something with metallic (or otherworldly coral) hooks or rings spaced around his considerable girth.

    Ha! When I first wrote the post on the Star Tribe jewellery, I had a specific joke that you could choose anything BUT a belt buckle – surely the janni would have better taste. I took it out though, as I was trying to keep a more serious mood – treasure is a serious business after all.

    In any event, sure enough – Moon comes through for me!

    Just for continuity though Phrip, since I didn’t have anything in the previous descriptions, quite as large as the belt you have described, let’s say Moon just selects the aquaman belt buckle and adds it to an existing belt he happens to have, or perhaps is already wearing. It won’t otherwise make an actual difference, save for that the magical portion will be a bit more portable.

    Now enough musing on to the good stuff.
    ----------

    Akaymarandi

    When Moon affixes his new belt buckle he finds he has a new ability, though it feels so natural that it’s more like one he’s always known he’s had, he just never made a point of using it before.
    Whenever Moonpate casts a spell using the once per day ability granted by his bonded focus (his Father’s beer stein), the stein now automatically fills-up with a potion.

  • The potion only lasts for 1 minute (10 rounds). If it’s not drunk within that time, it becomes non-magical, but remains excellent, possibly award-winning, beer.

  • The potion only has a magical effect if drunk by Moonpate. If someone else drinks it, it’s still good beer – just no magic. Drinking from the stein is still a standard action, just like any other potion.

  • the potion is chosen by the GM randomly. Generally, it will only be a level 1 potion, i.e cure light wounds, sanctuary etc. Akaymarandi's strength though might improve as Moonpate levels.

  • However, at the time of expending his bonded focus, Moonpate may choose to recite a Haiku such that the final 7 syllables suggest the potion he wants. If the GM can figure it out, he might just have Akaymarandi go with the suggested effect. He might not, the GM is fickle.

    And that is Akaymarandi, uber-belt buckle of the Star Tribe, the eldest tribe of the janni of the Osirion desert.


  • Halstadt Morgrym wrote:
    Hal picks up a bracelet which is made for a slightly built female. The designs on the bracelet though are breathtaking matching the most beautiful mosaics seen in A'Viss. The substance seems to be made of coral but Hal is not entirely sure. It clearly will not fit around his wrist so instead the dwarf collects his wild beard and stuffs it through the opening. His large mass of hair easily secures the jewlery in place and gives Hal a touch of refinement. Well he thinks so anyway.

    It does indeed.

    ----------
    Krythodan

    Whenever Halstadt casts an area effect spell or expends a magic device that causes fire damage, he may designate a single target within his spell radius. Call that the ‘epicentre target’:

  • Hal gets to roll damage for the epicentre target a second time – once for everyone in the spell effect taking damage as normal, and then a second roll for the epicentre target.

  • Hal can choose which of the two damage rolls to apply. In theory, that’s almost always going to be the higher result: Krythodan primary effect is to mitigate some of Hal’s bad die roll luck.

  • But it’s also conceivable Hal might want to select the lower of the two rolls. Perhaps he want to make an ‘eye in the hurricane’ effect where someone will actually take less damage – perhaps an ally is caught in one of his area effects. In this case he can select the lower of the two rolls for his epicentre target and apply that amount.

  • Note it doesn’t matter whether the chosen target is truly within the center of the blast or not – they can be anywhere within the spells area of effect - it’s just called the epicentre target because it sounds cool.

    And that is Krythodan, beard-clasp of the Star Tribe, the eldest tribe of the janni of the Osirion desert.


  • Male Human Wizard Level 8 - Conjurer
    Pact Stone GM wrote:


    In any event, sure enough – Moon comes through for me!

    As you have just attested, it is very hard for Moon to be serious...and I appreciate your appreciation of that fact.

    And many thanks for uber-cool belt buckle.


    Male Half-orc Barbarian (Invulnerable Rager) 4 / Sorcerer 1/Dragon Disciple 3

    Hurgah chooses a band of red gold shaped like a twisting sea serpent with tiny ruby eyes that seem to glow with an inner fire. The jewelry is probably meant to be an arm band, but fits nicely around Hurgah's left wrist.


    Male Dwarf Barbarian (Breaker) 8

    Okay, planning. First off, assuming we don't have a safe way into the campsite, someone we actually know about who is sympathetic towards us, or a secret backdoor entrance, we will need to find a safe place to set up our camp. We have what we have used in the past - Survival, courtesy of Breach and Karek, traps, Alarm spells, and burrowing courtesy of Moonpate's elementals. That may be enough to hide us the Exemplar's crowd, perhaps, but Thalia at least knows we aren't going to give up so easily, and she'll be tough to fool.

    Sadly, I don't see too many other options. Rope Trick or similar would be fabulous, but we don't have that. Scouring the cleric list, I came up with the following spells that could help with the shelter aspect: Stone Shape, to craft a hideout, Web Shelter to provide simple protection, and Lesser Planar Ally to maybe call a Janni and use his or her 3/day Plane Shift to stake out a place on the Astral Plane or somewhere slightly more hospitable than the hostile campsite. That last one is what we'll call "the Expensive option."

    What do we do when we're set up? Well, the first thing we need to do is reconnaissance. Gandel is ideal for this, and Breach and Hal have passable stealth scores. Gandel and Donkor might be the marks if we have to go in Disguise - halflings and humans are probably the most likely to go unnoticed. Moonpate, too, although I think more people are likely to recognize him, or at least notice he seems out of place. Hal and Donkor have a host of creative stealth help on the cleric list. While not known for aiding sneaks, there is a lot there that can be put to a creative use. Summons, too. Air Elementals are crazy stealthy, but I'm not sure how much intel they can come back with if they are only around for a minute.

    Fading fast. More on stealth, and plenty to come on Targeting and Destruction.


    Donkor Sooron wrote:

    Donkor finds himself drawn to a beautifully engraved lapis lazuli finger ring, which is inscribed with a distinctly aquatic motif which, while not exactly Pharasma's holy symbols, are definitely reminiscent of Her watery aspects. He takes the ring and puts it on, feeling peace and contentment that he is still enfolded in Her plan.

    Siasmae

    Anytime Donkor casts the spell divination:

  • He may ask 2 questions instead of one and get two answers.

  • The second questions is not a follow-up question, he has to ask them both at the time of casting.

  • The questions need not be related in any way.

  • Here’s the tricky part. If at any later time, Donkor takes an action that is directly in furtherance of following the advice given, or that has as its goal to make Pharasma’s prediction come into effect, Donkor gets a one time bonus of +4 to a single d20 roll.

  • Figuring out what the above means is going to be brutal – but we’ll get through it. The GM will be the arbiter of whether Donkor’s action qualifies for the bonus. You should not hesitate though to point out where you think it should apply.

  • That +4 bonus is only a single bonus, not one for each of the two questions and answers. If Donkor later casts divination and he hasn’t yet used the bonus, it is lost. The bonus applies for the new questions. Donkor can’t rack up multiple bonuses in reserve.

    And that is Siasmae, lapis lazuli finger ring of the Star Tribe, the eldest tribe of the janni of the Osirion desert.


  • Male Dwarf Barbarian (Breaker) 8

    Uh, cool. Looks like Divination could be all the planning we need... I know there's no use planning out every detail, as those kinds of plans never work anyway. But consider this post (these posts) brainstorming, just to see what kind of power we have available to us.

    The other thing I missed for recon was Donkor's Clairvoyance trick. The clerics have access to Air Walk, so that should be good for sustained air maneuvers, but without sustained invisibility, I'm not sure what that could accomplish. Meld into Stone might be great for getting into the camp. In conjunction with his Clairvoyance, that might be a good trick for Donkor - again, if there's any stone nearby.

    Targeting. Knowing what to hit. Gandel and Karek have Knowledge (Engineering). Breach has Craft (Traps). Either of those might give us a sense of what could be hit and how. The dwarves all have stonecunning, so if there's perchance unusual stonework, let us at it! If we put a spy in the camp, Gandel or Donkor or Moonpate can probably pick out persons in charge and we can do what we can to, um, "delay" them.

    Destruction. Everybody can participate here. Breach can do subtle sabotage, Karek excels at destroying things, Hurgah would be the best at "sabotaging" people. The cleric have a host of spells that could accomplish some powerful things. May I direct your attention to spells like Control Water and Giant Vermin, if we should happen to notice the corresponding terrain features or wildlife. Moonpate should probably use summons - again, Earth Elementals seem the best, when it comes to destruction.

    That's what I have for now. I'll add more spell suggestions or thoughts as I think of them.


    Morgrym sits alone on the beach in the morning light, separated from the others. His spell requires much more concentration and many more beads of the hour glass than his normal magics. Truly he is blessed that Angradd would gift him with such power.

    As he begins his prayer of divine magic, Halstadt can feel his presence, no - his thoughts - casting themselves westward across the desert. They move faster than a horse or even a bird, covering massive tracts of land in seconds. The experience is dizzying. Moments later, Hal senses his words on the outskirts of Sothis, the massive capital he left only days ago. He finds the Kothi. Without knowing how he knows, he intuitively appreciates that Venture Captain Krenshar is still there, in one of the hidden sub-levels of the complex.

    Having carefully memorized it, Morgrym delivers his message:

    “Met Exemplar. Thalia betrayed us. Forced to flee. Belleson slain by DecaJaws. DecaJaws destroyed. Contact spy inform him we head back to dig. Any advice?"


    Krenshar jumps back as words of fire suddenly appear in front of him in the hallway passage of the Under-Kothi. The burning letters deliver a terrible message. Somehow, he knows the words belong to Halstadt Morgrym, one of the dwarves he brought in on the Hoffenburrow job – the particularly self-righteous dwarf if he recalled correctly. Things are clearly dire.

    The Venture-Captain had though seen similar such magic before – indeed the Decemvirate had used it to reach him more than once. In fact, if he recalled correctly, the same spell was recently used to summon Hoffenburrow back to Osirion. Although Krenshar was not a spellcaster himself, he understood that he should nonetheless be able to provide a brief answer. If only there was more time to consider his response. He concentrated, doing his best to absorb the short burning message before it would be lost to him. Suddenly, he found himself answering.

    "What?! Dammit! Who is Deca-Jaws!? Where is Scarab?! Rendezvous with her – she’ll know next move. Protect Hoffenburrow! Stay away from Exemplar! Hurry! Jason. . ."

    Only after his response was sent did he afford himself the luxury of reflecting on the tragic news of the loss. He should not have let Jason go. It was too soon. Krenshar promised himself he would learn from this

    OOC Continuity Note:

    Just for those of you keeping track of your PC's knowledge versus your own: when you originally met Venture-Captain Krenshar, he did not provide the Dune Squad with the name “Scarab” or “Mithral Scarab”. He only told you he had a “spy” at the dig site and he implied the spy was a “she”. Unbeknownst to your PC, Krenshar imparted the name of the contact to Jason Belleson who is now unfortunately dead. For whatever reason, Belleson chose not to share that information with the rest of the Dune Squad. Krenshar, it would seem, has assumed that he has, which may lead to confusion.


    OOC: For the Star Tribe treasure, Breach calls 'dibs' on a jeweled eye patch!!!


    Karek Kogan wrote:
    After listening to the Professor's treatise on the nature of the jewelry, Karek inspects the pieces with interest and what appears to be professional detail. He picks up a heavy brooch with many different gems studded in the shape of an octopus, and uses it to pin down his damp cloak.

    Dolmarthis

    When Karek puts on his new Broach, he is disappointed to find it has no effect on him at all. It is not until the following morning that the dwarf belatedly discovers the Broach’s power has instead been instilled within Bunky, his hidden weasel companion:

    • Once per day, Bunky can make a single bite attack as though he were size Colossal (4d6).

    • Bunky does not gain reach as though he actually were Colossal. Nor is his AC affected by size – his size does not actually change. However, he does not draw an attack of opportunity for executing this magical bite attack on account of his Tiny size. Think of it as just as the weasel executes the attack a giant shadowy weasel-head is super-imposed over him to perform the bite.

    • Bunky adds a to-hit bonus to this one attack equal to Karek’s level. I.e. Currently +7 for a total of +11.

    • In calculating damage on the bite attack, he uses Karek’s current Strength score at the time. It is a primary attack so it is Str x 1.5 (added to the 4d6)

    • The bite is executed as Bunky’s turn, not Karek’s – there’s no action cost to Karek. Bunky can only use this ability though, if he is within 50 feet of Karek.

    And that is Dolmarthis, octopi brooch of the Star Tribe, the eldest tribe of the janni of the Osirion desert.

    Sometimes the bullet points in my posts just disappear, haven’t figured out why just yet. . .


    Male Dwarf Barbarian (Breaker) 8

    Supercool! Can Bunky use this attack from the relative safety and cover of Karek? Like, riding on his shoulder or whatever? I don't need this to make him a target. :)


    Male Dwarf Cleric 8

    "What?! Dammit! Who is Deca-Jaws!? Where is Scarab?! Rendezvous with her – she’ll know next move. Protect Hoffenburrow! Stay away from Exemplar! Hurry! Jason. . ."

    "The Exemplar has responded. He told us to meet with Scarab and protect Hoffenburrow. Any idea who Scarab is? He also warned us to stay away from the Exemplar. Tomorrow I can send him a message again but he seemed to indicate that we should hurry back to the dig site".

    Hal looks to his companions, "It may be best for us to approach with all stealth and attempt to enter the pyramid avoiding this contact, especially if we don't know who this contact is. No doubt the Asmodeans will be on the lookout for us. Perhaps the Potentate, Donkoor and I can summon some elementals to prove true the elemental prophecy", Hal winks at Moonpate. "This may be enough of a distraction to allow us to achieve our objective".


    Male Halfling Bard (Archivist) 6 / Pathfinder Delver 2

    The final piece of unclaimed Star Tribe jewelry is a delicate yet intricately-fashioned mithral ear wrap depicting a unicorn hippocampus - a mythological sea creature with the foreparts of a unicorn and the hindquarters of a fish, its forelegs ending in splayed fins rather than hooves. The piece is fashioned to be worn on the left ear, with the creature perched atop the ear facing forward and its tail fashioned to wrap gracefully down and around the outer curvature of the ear to hold it in place.

    Gandel marvels at the ear wrap's craftsmanship for several moments before placing it upon his ear. He is pleasantly surprised when the piece magically shrinks to fit his ear.


    Male Human Cleric/8

    Awesome items Beetle, and great brainstorming folks! Lots of good ideas there. I think there is no dissent on stealth being the way to go, it definitely seems like what we need to do. I can also certainly grab some summoning spells.

    Beetle, I believe we had established in the early-going that Donkor knew Mithral Scarab from his earlier adventure. If he knew that she was a pathfinder, this message would presumably let me guess this was the same person. If all this is true, could you please tell me what I do know about her?

    I think I also am going to need to know some details on my previous encounters with this Sceptre character as well!


    Male Human Wizard Level 8 - Conjurer
    Halstadt Morgrym wrote:

    "What?! Dammit! Who is Deca-Jaws!? Where is Scarab?! Rendezvous with her – she’ll know next move. Protect Hoffenburrow! Stay away from Exemplar! Hurry! Jason. . ."

    "The Exemplar has responded. He told us to meet with Scarab and protect Hoffenburrow. Any idea who Scarab is? He also warned us to stay away from the Exemplar. Tomorrow I can send him a message again but he seemed to indicate that we should hurry back to the dig site".

    Hal looks to his companions, "It may be best for us to approach with all stealth and attempt to enter the pyramid avoiding this contact, especially if we don't know who this contact is. No doubt the Asmodeans will be on the lookout for us. Perhaps the Potentate, Donkoor and I can summon some elementals to prove true the elemental prophecy", Hal winks at Moonpate. "This may be enough of a distraction to allow us to achieve our objective".

    "Sounds like a solid plan, good Halstadt. Perhaps some summoned elementals suitably riled up will spark the attention of their noble clans that are surely watching this great dig with interest. We may just need to provide a prelude to action. In any case, we should ride hard for the site to confound any pursuit and allow for a circuitous approach, maybe to position ourselves initially behind those great mounds of sand just north of the excavation."


    Donkor Sooron wrote:
    Beetle, I believe we had established in the early-going that Donkor knew Mithral Scarab from his earlier adventure. If he knew that she was a pathfinder, this message would presumably let me guess this was the same person. If all this is true, could you please tell me what I do know about her?

    Quite true! I think he would put that name together – how many Mithral Scarab Pathfinders could there be?

    Unfortunately, since she was rather secretive, he still doesn’t know very much about her. Sooron would know that the Mithral Scarab is a half-elvin female. She looked very young, but with her heritage she may well be old enough to be Donkor’s Mother. She didn’t strike Donkor as much of a combatant; he never saw her with a weapon. She appeared to be more of a messenger or a facilitator of contacts than an actual adventurer. Donkor recalls that Krenshar thinks exceptionally highly of her, but hey, that guy hires near-total strangers to pull of pyramid raids, so you could rightly question his judge of character.

    The good news is Donkor should be able to ID her if he saw her. Trickier if she were disguised, but still possible.

    Donkor Sooron wrote:
    I think I also am going to need to know some details on my previous encounters with this Sceptre character as well!

    “I can’t imagine why”:

    If you recall, Donkor left Sceptre for dead. The last Donkor saw Sceptre he was on the bottom level of veinstone pyramid of the Four Pharaohs of Ascension. He was tangling with a massive impregnable mummy-dragon which surely spelt death for everyone left behind. Good riddance as far as Donkor is concerned – Sceptre was a member of “Her Majestrix’s Expeditionary”, a band of relic-hunters under the employ of the Paracount Julista, a Chelaxian noble Osiriontologist. Her Majestrix’s Expeditionary was in direct competition with Donkor’s outfit. To be sure, Julista and his people did not fight fair, particularly Sceptre.

    Fortunately, Donkor and a few of his colleagues managed escape the dragon-mummy via the only way out of that level, a giant magical elevator carved from veinstone. Since one of Donkor’s companions had the magic item necessary to control the elevator in her possession, Donkor assumed no one else made it out alive.

    More importantly, as you will recall, the Veinstone Pyramid was destabilizing when Donkor escaped to the outside. The entire pyramid was shunted back to the demi-pocket plane of Ramlock’s Hollow. A truly nasty place of both desert and devils. As you recall it, the Osiriontologists in your group had explained that if Sceptre were alive, he would be trapped there for 56 years before the next planetary convergence would make the pyramid’s return even possible. (Er, well 55 years now.)

    Yeah, there’s no need to worry about Sceptre.


    Karek Kogan wrote:
    Supercool! Can Bunky use this attack from the relative safety and cover of Karek? Like, riding on his shoulder or whatever? I don't need this to make him a target. :)

    Yes, he can make attacks from Karek’s shoulder/square. But it doesn’t offer him any special protection. If Bunky attacks he can be attacked. If Karek's concerned, he’ll need to be selective as to who Bunky uses the attack on.


    Male Half-orc Barbarian (Invulnerable Rager) 4 / Sorcerer 1/Dragon Disciple 3

    "What about the professor? He is a capable man, but he is neither a warrior or a spy. He may be headed into danger.", Hurgah says, fiddeling with new wristband.


    Male Dwarf Barbarian (Breaker) 8
    Pact Stone GM wrote:
    When Karek puts on his new Broach, he is disappointed to find it has no effect on him at all. It is not until the following morning that the dwarf belatedly discovers the Broach’s power has instead been instilled within Bunky, his hidden weasel companion...

    Just so.

    Whad’uz id’o? Karek asked Gandel after pinning on the brooch. The halfling just kinda shrugged and turned away. Karek had been excited to see what qualities of his the brooch enhanced, but after several hours, the stresses of the day were beginning to wear on him.

    Although he was bone tired, Karek was awake for several hours more. He stood the first vigilant watch of the evening. The day’s accumulated triumph and sorrow weighed heavily on the dwarf. To keep his mind off Jason as he peered into the dark of the night, he began to turn his mind to his new treasure. Maybe it enhanced his powers of perception. He checked off the standard senses, one by one.

    He couldn't really see any farther. Sixty feet in the darkness, just like all the dwarves. And he still needed his glasses, to boot. A pair went missing in the oasis. They were as good as lost - he wouldn't willingly enter the water anytime soon. Bunky inspected the water’s edge as if he were considering it for a time, but nothing would convince the weasel to try that excursion again.

    He inhaled deeply; perhaps his sense of smell had been honed to the razor-sharp senses of the krenshar. He didn't sense anything but weasel, as usual. That seemed to be enhanced, anyway, despite the day-long bath. Karek rather hoped that his smell was not his best quality.

    He cocked his ear to listen. Past the snores of Hurgah, he thought he could hear something, low to the ground. It sounded like a kind of scurrying. Karek crouched low, and was promptly rewarded by the nocturnal Bunky springing across his face. Sigh. That probably wasn’t it.

    And try as he might, Karek didn't sense any vibrations in the ground from people or creatures moving along in the night. Well, past the snores of Hurgah, anyway. His sense of touch was not enhanced either, though sometimes it seemed like it when Bunky gave him playful nips on his fingers.

    As Breach woke to relieve him, Karek sat down to see if his sense of taste was his best quality. He popped open a bottle of the excellent alcohol he found in A'viss, and summarily decided that that wasn't quite enough to be a good judge of the matter, so he had another. In the spirit of generosity, he filled a dish for Bunky as well. No special powers made their presence known. Karek was disappointed again.

    As the night wore on, Karek found himself doing more and more, trying to get any sort of response from his new brooch. He tried to sneak past Breach, but failed miserably. He attempted some maneuvers when he returned to the size of his hammer, but had no luck. He took a few passes with the spear, but it was a foreign weapon out of the water. He recalled the names and purposes of the Seven Towers of Thraaf; the fifteen principles of architectural design as taught by the great Kido Godssmelter; and lessons on several different treatises on obscure branches of the field; but he didn’t seem to know any more. He dodged, weaved, and rolled, but none of it was any better.

    Magic never led anywhere good. Jason had seen to that. Karek was sick of the lies of self-important spellcasters, but Hurgah was on watch now, so he made a note to tell them so in the morning. In rising frustration and fatigue, Karek threw down his cloak and brooch and settled in to sleep. He hadn’t even said good night to Bunky.

    Karek rose late the next morning, much better rested, but no less cross. He carefully oiled his full plate as he prepared his things. It would feel good to be back in his armor. Karek was devising just how he would tell them all off and head moodily off into the desert, when he reached for cloak and brooch. This happened to be precisely where Bunky had decided to take his rest.

    Karek felt the attack before he saw it. 1d20 + 11 ⇒ (4) + 11 = 15 for 4d6 + 7 ⇒ (3, 3, 6, 5) + 7 = 24. Karek just barely dodged aside as the weasel's jaws cut into his chain shirt. He felt the impact through the rings.

    His point made, Bunky stared at Karek. Karek hefted Bunky and the brooch in wonder and finally conceded - to himself, mind you - that magic is not always bad.


    Did Karek just take 24 points of damage to support a flavor post? That is awesome - just awesome.

    We'd better get his wounded butt to the dig site.


    Hurgah the Reaver wrote:
    "What about the professor? He is a capable man, but he is neither a warrior or a spy. He may be headed into danger.", Hurgah says, fiddeling with new wristband.

    "Aye! What kind of instructions was he given, I wonder?" responds the veteran dwarf. "Will he just wander right into the dig site? This might turn into a rescue job."

    .
    "--The other thing that bothers me some is last night ye and Baldy told us when you rode out here there was a black column of smoke coming from the dig site. I wonder how that fits into this - can't be good, I reckon."


    Male Dwarf Barbarian (Breaker) 8
    Pact Stone GM wrote:

    Did Karek just take 24 points of damage to support a flavor post? That is awesome - just awesome.

    We'd better get his wounded butt to the dig site.

    Was willing to - Karek's AC with chain shirt, ring of protection, and never being flat-footed is 16. Bunky's roll was only a 15. 24 damage is certainly powerful enough to feel something, though!

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