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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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Lydia hangs back a bit, letting the others choose their potions first.

She is a bit troubled. The Exemplar might well know there were only six slaves chosen to enter the pyramid. They are nine. Her best solution is that Xerissa use her spell to instead disguise three of you as guards. Perhaps those three can pretend to be ushering the slaves and slip in the pyramid behind them at the last moment. Or is the better idea to go with nine slaves, and hope no one notices the discrepancy? Or should three remain behind, perhaps slipping out of the tent or hiding under the table?


Male Dwarf Barbarian (Breaker) 8

*Looks desperately for the potion that will give Hurgah his claws back.*


Male Dwarf Cleric 8

Hal peers into Xerissa's bag trying to discern which potion he should select. At first nothing jumps out at him, his comrades begin to choose different vials some of which did appeal to Hal but yet they did not have the "spark" he was seeking.

There was little time Hal knew before the Exemplar would arrive and the bag would be shut, who knew if the Dune Squad would get a second shot at choosing before having to face whatever lurked at the entranceway of the Pyramid. Hal closed his eyes and sought guidance from Angradd, he would point the way to what was right. Breathing deeply Hal opened his eyes and peered into the bag again.

This time one of the flasks began to glow. A luminesence he was sure was meant for his eyes only, this will aid me in my time of need I trust. Hal grasped the bottle or at least he tried to, it shifted from its original position within the bag!

Another of his comrades reached for the same vial but somehow even though their hand was headed right for it they missed it and grabbed another. Hal grimaced and as fast as he could snatched at the vial. Success!

Hal brought the vial up to inspect. The fire within had died out and in the light of the tent he was able to determine the shape on the vial, a great cat. A panther perhaps? Hal's strong suit was not wild animals. Hal shoved the vial into his haversack for later use knowing that Angradd would prompt him when the time was right to use it.

Hal has obtained a potion of Displacement with the Metamagic feat Extend Spell.


Male Dwarf Fighter 5/Rogue(Trapsmith) 2
stats:
Hp's: 77; AC 23, T: 12, FF: 18; Perc. +12; Fort: +9; Ref: +8, Will: +7

Breach shrugs as he figures if someone's offering you something for free, it's best not to look a gift horse in the mouth. As he grabs for one that seems to glow, Halstadt, with his grubby little dwarven hands, snatches it away. Bah! I'll just take this one then. It's blue. I like blue. Placing it in his pack, There. Can't wait ta be usin' that for proper butt-kickin'. He grins under his beard.

Potion of Haste


Female Elf Druid 5 (desert)/Rogue 3 (spy)

During her travels Xerissa had already laid claim to the potion she wanted for herself. It was a green-gray vial marked “|||<[:><:]>|||”. The symbol was from her personal labelling system. Once consumed the recipient would get a potentially life-saving boost of vigour.

I can’t think of any decent metamagic with a +2 level adjustment that works for a potion other than Extend or Empowered. I’ll go with a potion of empowered cure serious wounds. It was that or a potion of extended fly. Both have a lot of re-usable-ness for an alchemist.


While we’re waiting on the potion grab, let’s see if we can’t sort out the results of Xerissa’s spell. Below are the roles (magical images) available. To expedite, I’ve put in a possible line-up below. However, if anyone wants to swap or fine tune it, please do so.

I am assuming you still want the Scarab (Lydia) to come. If the Dune Squad releases her, you only need two guards, and one of the three 'guards' will need to fill the all important role of volunteer #4.
-----
Voluntold #1 (young and wiry Osirion slave with spear and shield) – Gandel

Voluntold #2 (old Osrion slave with short bow and white fletched arrows) - Moonpate

Volunteer #3 (the soldier who volunteered) - Halstadt

Volunteer #4 (whip-scarred Osirion slave with scimitar and circular shield – was sleeping) - Lydia

Voluntold #5 (possible priest/slave, very tall Osirion with Ahnk) - Donkor

Voluntold #6 (Tattooed young Osirion slave with two-handed falchion) - Xerissa

Tent Guard #1 - Breach

Tent Guard #2 - Karek

Tent Guard #3 – Hurgah
-----
Let me know if your PC has any plans to adapt to their ‘role’ such as adding mannerisms or if they have any special abilities they intend to bring to bear. If your PC intends to instead focus on shutting their trap and falling in line, let me know that too.


Male Dwarf Fighter 5/Rogue(Trapsmith) 2
stats:
Hp's: 77; AC 23, T: 12, FF: 18; Perc. +12; Fort: +9; Ref: +8, Will: +7

Tent guard is perfect. Breach will be shutting his trap and just be a guard. He realizes if he were to run his mouth, there's a high probability it could screw everything up. He's not the greatest actor of a dwarf. This is how I see Breach in such a situation. :)


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


Voluntold #2 (old Osrion slave with short bow and white fletched arrows) - Moonpate

The Pate is feeling pretty old and worn out already, so playing the geezer who vacillates between scared silent and muttering under his breath works good for him.


Male Human Cleric/8

Sooron, trusting in Pharasma's guidance, reaches into the bag without even looking, and takes the first potion his hands fall upon.

With faint curiosity he draws it into the air, and then momentarily regrets his decision as he sees the vial clearly and wonders if their new ally is pranking them.

The potion appears to be nothing more than the magical contents of a foul cesspit. Of the proper colour, with disturbing floating chunks in it, he ponders for a moment how he might ever bring himself to drink this foul brew.

It possesses another label in Xerissa's obscure system, and he looks to her for guidance.

Upon learning from her that it is a potion of Burrow with Extend on it, he whispers a prayer of thanks to his Goddess and stows it carefully in his pack.

While he's about that, he takes a closer look at his Decanter, to see how much it has healed, and tries to establish the how and why of it's increased rate of healing, and estimate how long it will take to completion.

Spellcraft (if I need it for checking out decanter):1d20 + 6 ⇒ (3) + 6 = 9

Let's see how badly we can break this pyramid with stone shaping, burrow, and the decanter!


Lydia of Sothis wrote:
Lydia hangs back a bit, letting the others choose their potions first.

-

Seeing everyone done, the Mithral Scarab takes the remaining potion, a round glass sphere filled with an opague grey gas. She bundles it up with a quilted cloth to protect it from getting shattered.

"I think I've seen one of these before," she says. . .

A potion of extended non-detection.


Donkor Sooron wrote:
While he's about that, he takes a closer look at his Decanter, to see how much it has healed, and tries to establish the how and why of it's increased rate of healing, and estimate how long it will take to completion.

-

Donkor thinks he is looking at mere minutes, maybe thirty, perhaps forty. Impossible to say - could be hours. Equally curious is what it will look like in its final shape.

Why this happened now, he can only guess.


Donkor Sooron wrote:
Let's see how badly we can break this pyramid with stone shaping, burrow, and the decanter!

-

Oh dear. . .

In fairness this does make quite a bit of sense for someone who had significant difficulty securing an exit the last time he entered a pyramid of the Four Pharaohs of Ascension.


The March to Ahn’Sehlota
-----
A large procession of guards arrives at the door of the emerald tent and enter. These soldiers look a few grades fancier than others you have seen, they wear more elaborate cuffs on their wrists and have metal plated neck collars. They are ten strong in number and wear suitably grim expressions.

The soldiers quickly count the volunteers inside the tent and forcibly usher them outside. They bark a few harsh words here and there which sound like they must be commands.

For those that speak Osirion:

You hear such things as:
“Time to go.”
“The Exemplar would meet her champions and say a few words before.”
“Move along.”
“Best to be done with it.”

Six guards lead the procession on its return trip to the dig site, while four close ranks behind the newly acquired slaves. Three more guards follow closely behind (Hurgah, Breach and Karek), largely ignored by four soldiers in front of them.

Open only on a successful DC 16 Sense Motive:

The three guards who were assigned to guard the Emerald Tent do not miss the fact that the slaves exiting their tent look identical to the very ones they sent away. Gone are the stout beard men and the crying child who spilt water. The Okaro has vanished as well. The three guards nevertheless appear to say nothing to the procession – at least not yet. As you are lead away you wish you could crane your head back and see what they will do. No doubt this is potentially a serious problem.

The procession takes a winding path headed northeast. There is no possible confusion as to where the path leads. It heads directly to a check-point which opens to the dig site.

As you march closer and closer you can soon see the great gaping hole where a lifetime’s worth of earth has been excavated. Rising from the gigantic man-made pit is a thick dark column of smoke, the same unnatural smoke you witnessed on previous days.

The slave procession passes through the check-point unquestioned. The soldiers them parade you around the lip of the dig site, headed for the large lift which descends into the pit. It would appear that the lift has been repaired or reconstructed following from its recent malfunction from last evening (at least you hope). Many soldiers and slave masters have gathered around the lip of the pit to gaze downwards, in anticipation of the excitement to come. There is some semblance of organization and security, but the gawkers appear to outnumber those with actual assignments.

Below is Ahn’Sehlota. . .

[I’ve already done the flavour text on how unber-tastic the invisible-but-not-invisible-pyramid looks like when you see it for the first time a couple of times now, so let’s just say Moonpate, Karek, Hurgah, Donkor and Xerissa are suitably impressed. They think it’s the total schnizzle - from a safe distance, of course. Regrettably that distance is getting swallowed up rather quickly.]

In the pit below, arrayed around the pyramid’s base, is an even larger crowd, no doubt awaiting the newest batch of volunteers to be sent inside the pyramid at the Exemplar’s command. You see Khymrasa is already here, waiting in the center of the assembly, attended by her personal bodyguards. She is decked out with elaborate jewels and feathers, all different and perhaps even more ornate than the previous times you encountered her. A pair of slaves are carrying a tent-like cover using poles to keep the Exemplar bathed in shade as she paces, while several other slaves wave large fans to create an artificial breeze for her.

The Shrine of Horns has a presence here as well. There are a number of the ivory-skinned monks down in the pit, perhaps a dozen, though they are all standing back and out of the way. You suspect there are a few more flittering in and out of the soldiers that line the top of the dig site as well. If their leader, the one who tackled an entire palanquin golem by himself yesterday, is here, you do not see him. For that matter, so far there is no sign of Thalia. Gandel, Hal and Breach recollect she was with the Exemplar at the dig site last night though. The Sand Sage is also absent.

At the bottom of the pit, a compact dirt ramp has been erected leading up 10-feet to the open square hole that acts as the mouth of the pyramid. No doubt, if your deception can be maintained, it is that ramp and the darkness beyond that square hole that ultimately awaits you. But first, the guards usher you aboard the wooden lift to descend into the pit. Gandel in particular seems to be eyeing it suspiciously.


Male Human Wizard Level 8 - Conjurer

When Moon looks at this sudden boon of a bag full of potions he hopes that the Venture Captain has heard enough about their dire predicament and the presence of these devil monks to conclude that means of protection and escape are vital. When he sees Donkor pull out a potion of Burrow, as disgusting as it looks, Moon knows that such a brew is exactly what he would want. Sure enough, there is another one in the bag. He secrets it away in one of his many pockets that are surprisingly easy for him to reach into. Now lets see those damn monks try to grapple him from underneath the sand.

The Pate will take a Burrow with Extend potion as well.


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

Hurgah looks a bit perplexed as the others grab potions - but then Xerissa points to a slender vial containing a dark liquid with what appears to be tiny motes of electricity inside.

She whispers a few words of explanation, and the half-orc nods and bares his tusks in a satisfied grin.

Hurgah picks something a bit on the odd side - a potion of draconic reservoir (electricity) modified with the Umbral Spell metamagic feat.


Female Elf Druid 5 (desert)/Rogue 3 (spy)

Sense Motive: 1d20 + 2 ⇒ (6) + 2 = 8

Oh! Don't like blowing those!

Beetle, Xerissa is totally impressed by the undescribed pyramid. As a Pathfinder she thinks ancient triangular buildings are almost as awesome as blowing stuff up. I'll find your old post. I'll do a search on Ahnk Selota and see what it looks like. I don't quite get what the black smoke is from though. Is the top of the pyramid on fire? Or is there some kind of bon fire in the pit?

Sure would love to see what one of my PC's enlarged bombs could do in a crowd like this. She could always chuck one and we could all run for the big square hole in the center. Bingo we are in.

Or we could see if magic of Krenshar's scroll holds up and we manage to get inside as planned. The advantage being if the deception works they will be less likely to send people after us. It might be best if we didn't have to defend our backs at the same time. Though a narrow dungeon corridore might be easier to hold than being caught out in the open with this crowd.

Also, why is Gandel worried about the lift? The guards are going on it with us right?


Male Dwarf Cleric 8

Sense Motive 1d20 + 9 ⇒ (10) + 9 = 19


Male Dwarf Cleric 8

Beetle:
Hal will keep a look out for the guards who were in front of the tent. He will not alert anyone else to the problem yet for fear of raising the suspicions of our entourage.


Male Human Wizard Level 8 - Conjurer

Sense Motive 1d20 + 2 ⇒ (5) + 2 = 7


Male Dwarf Barbarian (Breaker) 8

Sense Motive: 1d20 + 13 ⇒ (12) + 13 = 25

Karek examines the contents of the bag briefly, and reaches in with a ridiculous air of expertise. He pulls out a completely clear vial. Only the slightest of air bubbles alerts one to the presence of liquid in the flask at all. He gently uncaps the bottle and inhales, briefly, the barest scent of talc. This confirms his suspicions. Karek pockets the flask, and offers a grim nod to Moonpate and Hurgah.

Potion of See Invisibility, Extended.

-----------------------------------------------

Karek is fairly comfortable as a guard. He tries to perform his role with the appropriate swagger, but, like Breach, keeps his big mouth shut.

You know, the minute they try to talk to us, meaning the guards, in Osiriani, we'll be found out. Think we might switch in somebody who can speak the language?

Regardless, you might want to keep one of those bombs on standby, Xerissa.

Gandel is nervous because he rigged one of those lifts to break not 24 hours ago, resulting in a bloodbath for the Exemplar's personal entourage. It was a pretty rockin' scene.


Male Dwarf Fighter 5/Rogue(Trapsmith) 2
stats:
Hp's: 77; AC 23, T: 12, FF: 18; Perc. +12; Fort: +9; Ref: +8, Will: +7

Sense Motive: 1d20 + 7 ⇒ (17) + 7 = 24

Crap. Nothin' we can do 'bout it now. Just gotta keep movin'. And I'm gonna have ta learn that stupid language. I'm tired o' not knowin' what the heck's bein' said.

RPG Superstar 2012 Top 16

Karek Kogan wrote:

You know, the minute they try to talk to us, meaning the guards, in Osiriani, we'll be found out. Think we might switch in somebody who can speak the language?

Regardless, you might want to keep one of those bombs on standby, Xerissa.

Gandel is nervous because he rigged one of those lifts to break not 24 hours ago, resulting in a bloodbath for the Exemplar's personal entourage. It was a pretty rockin' scene.

We might switch Donkor and Hurgah.


Male Human Cleric/8

Sense Motive:1d20 + 8 ⇒ (5) + 8 = 13

Donkor is certainly willing to switch in as a guard. Do we think that she is less likely to speak with one of the "volunteers" though?


Female Elf Druid 5 (desert)/Rogue 3 (spy)

Good thinking Karek. Xerissa speaks Osirion and can swap in for another guard. That's two. Who else can be our third? I bet the bard speaks every language in game, right? The Donk makes a point, we are just shuffling our point of vulnerability. Now we'll have three Osirion slaves that can't talk. Who is least likely to be approached? What's with all the non-Osirion speaking dudes BTW? Mike didn't tell anyone where the game was set I bet. Glad to see his evil continues.


Male Dwarf Barbarian (Breaker) 8

Nah, we're just relentless optimizers who evidently didn't care where the game was set. Also, what do dwarves care, amiright?

We don't need all the guards or all the slaves to speak Osirion. However, at some point in the not-so-distant future, they are going to send the slaves into the pyramid and, likely, issue some sort of order to the guards escorting them in the native language. As it stands right now, with no guards able to understand it, we'd be found out right away. If one of them can speak it, that person can either respond appropriately, tell the rest of us what they said so we can figure out how to respond, or just make a break for it. My point is simply that one of us should know. Simply switching Donkor for Hurgah is fine. We should probably have the rest of the native speakers as slaves.


Hmmmmm, if I have followed the swap talk to the end, that now makes it:
-----
Voluntold #1 (young and wiry Osirion slave with spear and shield) – Gandel

Voluntold #2 (old Osrion slave with short bow and white fletched arrows) - Moonpate

Volunteer #3 (the soldier who volunteered) - Halstadt

Volunteer #4 (whip-scarred Osirion slave with scimitar and circular shield – was sleeping) - Lydia

Voluntold #5 (possible priest/slave, very tall Osirion with Ahnk) - Hurgah

Voluntold #6 (Tattooed young Osirion slave with two-handed falchion) - Xerissa

Tent Guard #1 - Breach

Tent Guard #2 - Karek

Tent Guard #3 – Donkor
-----
I like it. The guys with the three slowest Speeds are in charge of making the surprise dash inside the pyramid. Though I suppose if Donkor keeps his armor off, he can get it up to 30 feet per round.
Mr. Serious: I do believe I made reference to the value of Osirion in the initial FAQ. I think though that most of these guys look forward to linguistic misunderstandings that result in initiative. Wait till you see what their fortes’ are.

Last call for any actions/precautions/pleas for mercy before the party is marched on to the lift and lowered into the pit of no return. . .


Male Dwarf Cleric 8

Based on my characters background there was no way he would have learned Osiriani. At least that is my story and I am sticking to it!


Male Halfling Bard (Archivist) 6 / Pathfinder Delver 2

In the Emerald Tent:

Gandel waits for his companions to choose their potions before reaching into the bag to take the last vial. The vial does not appear to contain liquid at all, only a wisp of pale vapor swirls within the container.

Potion of Gaseous Form, Extended

DC 16 Sense Motive check: 1d20 + 5 ⇒ (3) + 5 = 8

At the Dig Site:

Xerissa Auraraun wrote:
Also, why is Gandel worried about the lift? The guards are going on it with us right?
Karek Kogan wrote:
Gandel is nervous because he rigged one of those lifts to break not 24 hours ago, resulting in a bloodbath for the Exemplar's personal entourage. It was a pretty rockin' scene.

Gandel didn't just rig one of the lifts, he rigged the ONLY lift to fail spectacularly. That's why Gandel is eyeing it so nervously - to say that he doesn't exactly trust the repair work would be an understatement.


Male Dwarf Barbarian (Breaker) 8
Pact Stone GM wrote:
I like it. The guys with the three slowest Speeds are in charge of making the surprise dash inside the pyramid. Though I suppose if Donkor keeps his armor off, he can get it up to 30 feet per round.

Ugh, point. What do people think about this? Karek is not currently armored, so he can make a run at 80 feet. (Hey, where is his stuff, by the way?)


Male Dwarf Barbarian (Breaker) 8
Pact Stone GM wrote:
I like it. The guys with the three slowest Speeds are in charge of making the surprise dash inside the pyramid. Though I suppose if Donkor keeps his armor off, he can get it up to 30 feet per round.

Ugh, point. What do people think about this? Karek is not currently armored, so he can make a run at 80 feet. That seems like it should be enough. (Hey, where is his stuff, by the way?)


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

C'mon guys, stop fretting - I'm sure everything will go smooth (said the guy who voted for an all-out battle) :-)


Male Halfling Bard (Archivist) 6 / Pathfinder Delver 2

I've got a potion of gaseous form - I'm good for whatever (as long as I get a chance to drink it!).


Karek Kogan wrote:
(Hey, where is his stuff, by the way?)

-

At this stage, it can be wherever you would like it, as long as you let me know. With the magic veil over him, Karek can be fully armored and still look like a bare-chested Osirion soldier. He can also have his armor elsewhere, such as stashed in a near-bursting backpack that nobody else can see he is wearing. When I GM PC'd Karek I had him remove his armor and keep it inside a sack.

You make a good point that we should clarify this. I will assume that the Dune Squad re-armored up in the emerald tent. So if anyone would prefer to go without, do let me know.

as long as we're at it, another detail 'swept under the table', was what happened to the giant tent canvass Hurgah was carried in. I envisioned that it was rolled-up and hidden under the table in the emerald tent and now left behind. However, it would be conceivable for someone to ball it up and stash it on their back, whereupon, as bizarre as it sounds, it would be hidden by the magic of the illusion spell. It would though probably push someone over on encumbrance.


"Is it Time to Fret Yet?"
-----

The lift descends slowly, controlled by a metal winch operated by a group of slaves carefully overseen by a whip master barking commands. As the lift begins its decent someone signals a set of drummers who begin to pound away at a set of giant ceremonial drums, each using a stone mallet carved with hieroglyphics. The pounding begins slowly building a rhythm, but it soon begins to grow faster, building the anticipation amongst the gathering crowd.

KLONG, klong, KLONG, klong, KLONG, klong, KLONG, klong, KLONG, klong, KLONG, klong, KLONG, klong, KLONG, klong, KLONG, klong, KLONG, klong, KLONG, klong, KLONG, klong. . .

(What? One Klong too many?)

The lift descends 100 feet and with a loud ‘Judunk’ it reaches the ground. As soon as it does, the drumming comes to a halt and the air fills with silence. You can feel a vast number of eyes upon you. Between the gawkers on the lip of the dig site above and the crowd assembled below, there must be over a hundred people here. What kind of show are they expecting?

Seeing that Karek, Breach and Donkor (magically disguised as guards) have descended on the lift as well, one of the real guards signals they are to return back up with the lift. He motions for the three of you to stay and signals the slave master above to raise the lift.

Osirion speakers only:

“We got it, tent guard,” he says with a hint of derision. “Watch the show from up there.”

Then he turns away and resumes escorting the slaves. The guards appear to be leading the ‘volunteers’ onto a wooden podium or stage of some kind, not far from the base of the pyramid. The Exemplar Khymrasa appears to be stepping forward, her bodyguard in tow.


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

What kind of show are they expecting?

No doubt they'll get one.

Karek steps off the lift, ignoring the real guard.


Male Dwarf Barbarian (Breaker) 8

And yes, Karek is indeed armored, as long as that's not too noisy. We probably left the tent canvas behind.


Male Dwarf Fighter 5/Rogue(Trapsmith) 2
stats:
Hp's: 77; AC 23, T: 12, FF: 18; Perc. +12; Fort: +9; Ref: +8, Will: +7

It's not my fault Breach didn't pick Osirion. I'm just a replacement dude. :)

Breach would definitely be for having his armor on. Does this mean we could also have our weapons with us? I'm with Karek on the tent issue.

Breach steps off the lift as well; acting as if he didn't notice the instruction.


Breach Shattershield aka Javell wrote:
Breach would definitely be for having his armor on. Does this mean we could also have our weapons with us?

-

Oh yes. And based on what I know about the Dune Squad, I am certain everyone has their weapons close at hand.

Now just to make this clear as mud, the illusion conceals your weapons while they are sheathed or put away. Once they are in your hands they are quite visible. Your PC's appearance is disguised, but that doesn't mean a PC's weapons are invisible once they start waving them around.


Hurgah the Reaver wrote:
Hurgah picks something a bit on the odd side - a potion of draconic reservoir (electricity) modified with the Umbral Spell metamagic feat.

-

Now that's how you play design-a-potion!

(First prize awarded!)

I hope we actually get to see this creation in practice.


Upon seeing the mystic pyramid so close up, the Scarab is really struggling to keep her composure. She is quite terrified. She is not sure which will be worse: being captured by the Exemplar's legion or actually being sent inside that lightless square opening.

Fortunately her visible shakes do not betray her disguise -- they more likely enhance it.


“The King’s Speech, er, The Exemplar’s Speech”

I have assumed Donkor is like-minded with Breach and Karek, declining to head back up the ramp.
-----
The guards array the disguised Dune Squad in a line on the wooden stage before the gathered assembly. It is remarkable that the magical disguise has withstood the prodding and pulling. You can’t help but consider that perhaps it hasn’t.

The surrounding crowd as well as the one above at the lip of the dig site watches intently. Once a suitable hush has occurred, the Exemplar Khymrasa steps forward and begins her speech. The crowd appears to give her their rapt attention.

Osirion speakers:

The Exemplar begins by explaining that today is a momentous day. Many gathered here have toiled to excavate this most important of pyramids: Ahn’Sehlota. Today the fruit of that labour will be reclaimed for Osirion.

She appears to slide over the fact that this is technically attempt number three. . .

Next, she thanks those gathered for their heavy labour in the desert. It is an unusually magnanimous gesture given that most who participated were here by virtue of indentured slavery.

Khymrasa then reviews some of the high-points of the history of the Four Pharaohs of Ascension, recounting their significant military and economic success and territorial expansion.

We can dispense with the Knowledge (history) check as it has already been made on this subject. It would be weird if the PCs spontaneously knew more or less than before on the same subject. Instead a review of past rolls already tells us who is up on this subject: Professor Trapspringer, the archivist heavily devoted to Osiriontology, and to a lesser extent Donkor, a native priest who has previously braved another of the Four Pharaohs’ pyramids (their burial place no less).

The Exemplar knows her history surprisingly well for a noble, she includes a number of obscurities. Perhaps her pet sage has kept her well briefed, or she is a quicker study than she appears. She definitely glosses over the many elaborate cruelties of the Four Pharaohs, but her recounting of their success is in accordance with most archaeological evidence. She doesn’t exaggerate either, but perhaps she need not: it was an impressive record on its own.

Open only on a successful DC 14 Perception check:

During the course of the Exemplar’s speech, the Sand Sage appears from somewhere within the crowd and takes up his post slightly behind her. He wasn’t there before, you are sure of it. His swarm of eyes do not appear with him. Likely it would distract from the Exemplar’s speech. No doubt the eyes are somewhere near. Do they miss much?

Osirion speakers continued:

The Exemplar then turns to the brave volunteers who have come forward to help usher their great nation of Osirion into its next age. Osirion’s future lies in its past. These brave explorers will bravely risk the no-doubt many dangers of Ahn’Sehlota in order to unearth its history for the present in honor of their ancestors and families. They all deserve your honor and respect. (The crowd delivers an appropriate burst of applause on cue).

She also makes a reference to equipping the volunteers with the finest tools and weapons and that their personal rewards, on their return, will be great.

As the Exemplar's speech appears to be winding up, a robed administrator – perhaps a replacement of the late Ayano - hands Khymrasa a piece of paper.

Osirion speakers continued once more:

Khymrasa then reads what you assume are supposed to be your names. It is a rather awkward moment as you do not know who is who and you think you and your comrades were probably supposed to bow on cue.

Khymrasa’s speech ends to a fiery applause. It is hard to know if her speech was genuinely well-received or if the crowd knows better than to fail to clap. Perhaps it results in being pitched over the side or being named the next volunteer into the pyramid.

Open on a Sense Motive DC 13 only:

It feels like the crowd’s true reaction is a mixed bag. A lot of those in attendance really do seem to feel that Khymrasa is pursuing the national interest and engaged in a historic and worthy archaeological project. She has their true support. Others suspect she is pursuing her own selfish glory and they are just hopeful this whole thing will be over soon.

Once the Exemplar's speech concludes the drummers start up again. This time they are accompanied by several musicians playing defrahs, large twangy-sounding stringed instruments native to Osirion, perhaps vaguely related to the mandolin.

Knowledge (History) or Perform DC 13:

The song being played is the closest thing Osirion has to a national anthem. It is an ancient theme, often played before battles or appearances of the Ruby Prince or the Council of Liberated Slaves.

Open only a DC 12 Sense Motive:

From the way all eyes fall upon you, and the way the music is winding down, you kinda get the sense this is the moment you (the volunteers) are supposed to bravely stride into the mouth of the pyramid. Either that or they are pausing before they slaughter the imposters, who are now completely surrounded. Definitely one of the two. . . Certainly the guards are getting a little agitated, though they are trying not to show it.


Osirion:

"For the Glory of our Ancestors! . . ."

"For the glory of Osirion! . . ."

"Ahn'Sehlota belongs to the people once more!"


Male Dwarf Cleric 8

Perception 1d20 + 8 ⇒ (5) + 8 = 13
Sense Motive 1d20 + 9 ⇒ (17) + 9 = 26
Knowledge History 1d20 + 5 ⇒ (14) + 5 = 19
Sense Motive 1d20 + 9 ⇒ (9) + 9 = 18


Male Human Wizard Level 8 - Conjurer

DC 14 Perception Check: 1d20 + 4 ⇒ (20) + 4 = 24

DC 13 Sense Motive Check: 1d20 + 2 ⇒ (7) + 2 = 9

Knowledge History: 1d20 + 10 ⇒ (19) + 10 = 29

DC 12 Sense Motive Check: 1d20 + 2 ⇒ (6) + 2 = 8


Male Dwarf Barbarian (Breaker) 8

Perception: 1d20 + 12 ⇒ (18) + 12 = 30

Karek cannot fail those Sense Motive checks. Who needs the right language, hah!

Karek begins to prod those poor schmucks forward, following close behind to make sure none escape.


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

Understanding next to nothing of what is being said, Hurgah simply maintains a placid look and takes a cue from the other team members.


Male Dwarf Cleric 8

Hal nods with grim resolve but holds his position until Gandel reacts as Hal knows he is one of the few members of the squad that speaks the language.


Male Halfling Bard (Archivist) 6 / Pathfinder Delver 2

DC 14 Perception check: 1d20 + 12 ⇒ (20) + 12 = 32
DC 13 Sense Motive check: 1d20 + 5 ⇒ (8) + 5 = 13
DC 13 Knowledge (History) check: Autosucceed
DC 12 Sense Motive check: 1d20 + 5 ⇒ (9) + 5 = 14

Gandel bows respectfully toward the Exemplar, being careful to keep his eyes averted from her face. Trying to keep his excitement in check, the young and wiry Osirion slave carrying a spear and shield straightens and heads toward the pyramid's opening, hoping that his companions are following his lead.


Male Dwarf Cleric 8

Once Gandel provides the cue Hal moves forward, stepping right next to him and in fact taking a slight lead after all the man he is impersonating did volunteer for this!


Male Human Wizard Level 8 - Conjurer

"Old Man" Moonpate hesitates nervously, taking a step back to allow for one of the "guards" behind him to "escort" him forward.

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