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The Twisted Closet

Game Master I'm Hiding In Your Closet

Path to Mercy


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This is my second time cracking open my own PbP thread (though I have much more experience DMing than that), so please bear with me in the event of technical difficulties. Introduce yourselves as you will when you are ready.

Silver Crusade

AC 16, touch 11, flat-footed 16 (+5 armor, +1 trait) hp 21 (2d10+4) Fort +8, Ref +3, Will +6; +2 vs. enchantments

Saying Hi, will write more later

Sovereign Court

Female L/N Sylph Alchemist/3 | HP: 22/24 | AC/Tch/FF: 18/13/15 | CMB +2; CMD 15 | Fort/Ref/Will +4/6/1 | Init: +3 | Speed 30 ft | Appraise +8, Craft (Alchemy) +13, Disable Device +7, Fly +8, Heal +4, Kn Arc +8, Kn Nat +8, Kn Planes +5, Perception +6, Sleight of Hand +9, Spellcraft +10, Use Magic Device +5 | Active Conditions: None

Firewarden Yanda is a slim Sylph who looks likely to blow away in a strong breeze. She is too skinny and bony to be attractive, her features rigid and at attention, her posture erect and also stiff. She is plainly dressed, except for the mithral shirt that gleams from beneath her clothing, and has a belt lined with various vials.

Silver Crusade

AC 16, touch 11, flat-footed 16 (+5 armor, +1 trait) hp 21 (2d10+4) Fort +8, Ref +3, Will +6; +2 vs. enchantments

The young half elf enters into the room, dressed in clothing of a wanderer or from an arid land. He carries a shiny elven curved blade and the tink of armor underneath his robes can be heard. A holy symbol is on his neck

The young half elf enters into the room. Greetings [/b[ he says I am [b]Talondreal, devotee of Apsu he relates as he takes a seat.

Sovereign Court

Female L/N Sylph Alchemist/3 | HP: 22/24 | AC/Tch/FF: 18/13/15 | CMB +2; CMD 15 | Fort/Ref/Will +4/6/1 | Init: +3 | Speed 30 ft | Appraise +8, Craft (Alchemy) +13, Disable Device +7, Fly +8, Heal +4, Kn Arc +8, Kn Nat +8, Kn Planes +5, Perception +6, Sleight of Hand +9, Spellcraft +10, Use Magic Device +5 | Active Conditions: None

Kn Religion: 1d20 + 4 ⇒ (7) + 4 = 11
"Apsu? That's interesting. Are you a dragon-blooded sorcerer or bloodrager or something?"

Silver Crusade

AC 16, touch 11, flat-footed 16 (+5 armor, +1 trait) hp 21 (2d10+4) Fort +8, Ref +3, Will +6; +2 vs. enchantments

The paladin nods in his head in the negative.

Scarab Sages

Half-elf Fighter 2 | HP 22/22 | AC 16; Tch 12; FF 14 | F +5; R +2; W -1 | CMB+4; CMD 16 | Speed 30 ft | Init +4 | MW Falcata: +5 (1d8+2/19-20/x3) | Perc+10

A half-elf warrior smiles in response to the others. He has platinum blonde hair and a slim build, and wears light armor with a falcata at his waste.

A small familiar perches on his shoulder.

"I am Fatham, and this is Vexer," he says. "The pleasure is all mine, I am sure."

Grand Lodge

Male Human Wizard/1| AC 13 [17] T 13 FF 10 | HP 6/8 |Fort +1 Ref +2 Will +3 | Per +6 | Init +2 |HotA 6/6

A young human male dressed in sturdy clothes of black and dark blue enters. Dark of hair and eye, he is tall and lean, though muscular. He wears no armor, but a sword is belted at his left hip. A cat follows closely at his feet. The animal has black ears, feet, and tail tip. the rest of it's fur is tan and gray in a tortoise shell pattern.

"I'm Ardain." He says. "Magic's my trade, though I live by the blade." He grins. "I don't always speak in rhyme.'

Silver Crusade

AC 16, touch 11, flat-footed 16 (+5 armor, +1 trait) hp 21 (2d10+4) Fort +8, Ref +3, Will +6; +2 vs. enchantments

The paladin nods at his fellow half-elf

Scarab Sages

Male Tengu Zen Archer/ Feral Hunter lvl 2 HP:14/14Initiative:+6AC:17, T:17, FF:14, CMB:2, CMD:19, Fort: 4, Ref: 7. Will: 6, Perception: +10, Sense Motive: +8 Melee:Scimitar +2(1d6+2, 18-20x2), Ranged: MW Comp. Longbow+4(1d8+2, x3)

While everyone was greeting each other, a dark blueish-black Tengu made his way in the room. He looked around for any instructions, not seeing any he decided he should say hi. Hey guys, I'm Kristoff, most people call me Chuk. I know weird name for a bird right? Well, looks like we're early, is this anyone's first mission? You can see that the Tengu is wearing a black cloth Gi with the arms ripped off at the shoulders and matching black pants with a tan belt tied around his waist. He also has a dark gray cloak wrapped around his neck that flows down to the back of his knees. His feathers are died white around his neck and around his eyes. As for his personality think Cayde-6 from destiny.

Grand Lodge

Male Human Wizard/1| AC 13 [17] T 13 FF 10 | HP 6/8 |Fort +1 Ref +2 Will +3 | Per +6 | Init +2 |HotA 6/6

"Second mission actually." Ardain tells Kristoff.

Sovereign Court

Female L/N Sylph Alchemist/3 | HP: 22/24 | AC/Tch/FF: 18/13/15 | CMB +2; CMD 15 | Fort/Ref/Will +4/6/1 | Init: +3 | Speed 30 ft | Appraise +8, Craft (Alchemy) +13, Disable Device +7, Fly +8, Heal +4, Kn Arc +8, Kn Nat +8, Kn Planes +5, Perception +6, Sleight of Hand +9, Spellcraft +10, Use Magic Device +5 | Active Conditions: None

"Hardly. Been on about 10 missions now and almost died from a couple of those. Makes you doubt your sanity."

Scarab Sages

Male Tengu Zen Archer/ Feral Hunter lvl 2 HP:14/14Initiative:+6AC:17, T:17, FF:14, CMB:2, CMD:19, Fort: 4, Ref: 7. Will: 6, Perception: +10, Sense Motive: +8 Melee:Scimitar +2(1d6+2, 18-20x2), Ranged: MW Comp. Longbow+4(1d8+2, x3)

Oh? Yea running around doing little errands for people, like: "Hey go get this bottle for me it's real important.... "Next thing you know your in the middle of some cave full of death traps and a bunch of hungry monsters.Chuk looks around for a moment to see if anyone is nodding in agreement, then decides he better shut up.So anyone know whose leading this mission?

Silver Crusade

AC 16, touch 11, flat-footed 16 (+5 armor, +1 trait) hp 21 (2d10+4) Fort +8, Ref +3, Will +6; +2 vs. enchantments

I have been on 3 or 4, though I am recently a confirmed member of the Society he responds to the tengu's query.

Sovereign Court

NG Male Kitsune | Swashbuckler 1 | Init: +4 | Speed: 30’ | HP: 12 / 12 | Perception: -1, Low-Light Vision | Panache 2 / 2 | AC: 18, Touch: 14, FF: 14 | CMD: 16 | Sovereign Court | Fort: +2, Ref: +6, Will: -1

A dark-haired men opens the door and enters. He is handsome, his oddly vulpine features enhancing his exotic looks, and he sports a finely-manicured mustache. A slim rapier hangs from his left hip, and from his right hang a pair of odd, circular metal objects that must be weapons though they are not likely familiar to most.

He turns to regard those in the room, his visage one of chagrin and embarrassment. "My sincere apologies, I got a bit... lost on the way here. I haven't held anything up, have I? My name is Corwyn Silvermane. At your service." He performs a bow, sweeping his red cloak in a practiced, courtly gesture.

Silver Crusade

AC 16, touch 11, flat-footed 16 (+5 armor, +1 trait) hp 21 (2d10+4) Fort +8, Ref +3, Will +6; +2 vs. enchantments

The paladin nods in greeting at the newcomer.

Scarab Sages

Male Tengu Zen Archer/ Feral Hunter lvl 2 HP:14/14Initiative:+6AC:17, T:17, FF:14, CMB:2, CMD:19, Fort: 4, Ref: 7. Will: 6, Perception: +10, Sense Motive: +8 Melee:Scimitar +2(1d6+2, 18-20x2), Ranged: MW Comp. Longbow+4(1d8+2, x3)

Chuk's head quickly tilts to the side and back glancing at the shinies on his hip as the new guy bows.
Um..nice stache, ugh my names Kristoff, but I go by Chuk, you're not late, or maybe you are who knows?
Says Kristoff in a playful way.

Sovereign Court

NG Male Kitsune | Swashbuckler 1 | Init: +4 | Speed: 30’ | HP: 12 / 12 | Perception: -1, Low-Light Vision | Panache 2 / 2 | AC: 18, Touch: 14, FF: 14 | CMD: 16 | Sovereign Court | Fort: +2, Ref: +6, Will: -1

Corwyn returns Tolondreal's nod and reflexively strokes his mustache when Chuk speaks, flashing the Tengu a toothy smile. "Thanks! Nice... umm... beak! Well, I suppose my little side trip didn't prove too much of an inconvenience, then. Still trying to find my way around this city. Too long on the ship, I suppose. Any idea of why we've been summoned? I wonder if it'll be Drandle Dreng again. Nearly got killed on that last mission he sent me on. Not to mention he's a bit of an odd bird." The swashbuckler again gives Chuk a grin, though this one appears to be slightly embarrassed. "Uh... no offense, friend. Just a turn of phrase."

Scarab Sages

Male Tengu Zen Archer/ Feral Hunter lvl 2 HP:14/14Initiative:+6AC:17, T:17, FF:14, CMB:2, CMD:19, Fort: 4, Ref: 7. Will: 6, Perception: +10, Sense Motive: +8 Melee:Scimitar +2(1d6+2, 18-20x2), Ranged: MW Comp. Longbow+4(1d8+2, x3)

Hahaha! Chuk slaps Corwyn on the shoulder Im gonna like you, we'll get along just fine, but as for your question earlier, I have no idea, I was just told to bring my bow here, and there would be money.

Sovereign Court

NG Male Kitsune | Swashbuckler 1 | Init: +4 | Speed: 30’ | HP: 12 / 12 | Perception: -1, Low-Light Vision | Panache 2 / 2 | AC: 18, Touch: 14, FF: 14 | CMD: 16 | Sovereign Court | Fort: +2, Ref: +6, Will: -1

Corwyn's grin turns easier as the tengu appears to truly take no offense. "Well, money is good. Never used a bow myself. I rather like to get into the thick of things, you know?" The swashbuckler confides as he pats the finely-wrought hilt of the rapier hanging from his left hip, then he shifts to his other. "Still, this little weapon has served me well at times when I'm not dueling. Ever seen one used? It's called a chakram." Corwyn raises the circular weapon from where it is attached to his belt and holds it up to Chuk and gives a brief demonstration. "Careful of the edge, it's wicked sharp. You have to grip it just here you see, and then you just sort of flick your wrist and set it sailing. Flies true for thirty feet or more, beyond about a hundred feet though you're going to be damn lucky to hit anything smaller than a house. One of these days I might try to find a wizard to enchant the thing and make it return to my hand after I throw it. Last mission I worked for Dreng I spent a solid fifteen minutes trying to dredge it out from under the water in a half-submerged tower after missing the fish-creature that surprised us there. Thought maybe I'd lost it for good." The swashbuckler returns the exotic-looking weapon to his hip, then glances around at the others in the room.

Sovereign Court

Female L/N Sylph Alchemist/3 | HP: 22/24 | AC/Tch/FF: 18/13/15 | CMB +2; CMD 15 | Fort/Ref/Will +4/6/1 | Init: +3 | Speed 30 ft | Appraise +8, Craft (Alchemy) +13, Disable Device +7, Fly +8, Heal +4, Kn Arc +8, Kn Nat +8, Kn Planes +5, Perception +6, Sleight of Hand +9, Spellcraft +10, Use Magic Device +5 | Active Conditions: None

"The sensible thing to do is to use something you don't have to retrieve!" Yanda pats her vials meaningfully.

"I have to say, though, that I appreciate your talents. I spent one mission trying my best to keep away from a brute chasing me around a castle because we had to protect some stupid goblins, one of which swallowed one of my acid vials when I caught it stealing it. Idiotic creatures. Anyway, if you can keep the burly brutes off me I'd really appreciate it.

Silver Crusade

AC 16, touch 11, flat-footed 16 (+5 armor, +1 trait) hp 21 (2d10+4) Fort +8, Ref +3, Will +6; +2 vs. enchantments

The half elf listens to his group's conversation.

Scarab Sages

Half-elf Fighter 2 | HP 22/22 | AC 16; Tch 12; FF 14 | F +5; R +2; W -1 | CMB+4; CMD 16 | Speed 30 ft | Init +4 | MW Falcata: +5 (1d8+2/19-20/x3) | Perc+10

Dotting to hide thread...best of luck, everyone!

Grand Lodge

M Gnome Druid (feyspeaker/wild whisperer) HP: 11/11 | AC: 19 CMD: 10 | F: 5 R: 2 W: 3 | lowlight vision, Per + 10 (+13 in bright light) SM +7 init +2

dot, will check in for real in a few hours

Grand Lodge

M Gnome Druid (feyspeaker/wild whisperer) HP: 11/11 | AC: 19 CMD: 10 | F: 5 R: 2 W: 3 | lowlight vision, Per + 10 (+13 in bright light) SM +7 init +2

A very slight and small even by gnome standards boy with a red eagle only slightly smaller than himself perched on his shoulder walks to join the group.

His skin is a very faint chestnut gone nearly white and the hair is just barely dusted with a foam colored green-yellow.

"Hey fellas - the name is Thornberry...and I talk to animals"

He seems a bit down in the dumps. He is clad in bits and scraps of leather fastened together haphazardly. He has a few objects - clearly issued out of pity by the quartermaster in Skyreach all marked with a leather-stamped Sigil of the Open Road.

He yawns and seems disinterested in the conversation - though interestingly like he is trying REALLY hard to get engaged I am really trying to fight off a serious case of the bleaching - my time as a slave had nearly done me in but your society liberated me and the others from the slave pits of absalom. I moped around the grand lodge hoping to find a group to go out with and well Kreighton Shaine said he would recommend me to a colleage to help me get my color back after that ordeal - the drudgery of slavery.

Scarab Sages

Male Tengu Zen Archer/ Feral Hunter lvl 2 HP:14/14Initiative:+6AC:17, T:17, FF:14, CMB:2, CMD:19, Fort: 4, Ref: 7. Will: 6, Perception: +10, Sense Motive: +8 Melee:Scimitar +2(1d6+2, 18-20x2), Ranged: MW Comp. Longbow+4(1d8+2, x3)

Everyday’s a new day, wait...um night brings a new day...no that’s not it either...welcome to the team! Kristoff’s head tilts at the eagle and he makes a clicking noise, the he snaps out of it. Names chuk, I speak to animals too it sounds like *Floosh*Kristoff pantomimes like he’s shooting a bow.Haha! I’m just kidding, maybe... Kristoff winks at Thornberry in a playful manner.

Grand Lodge

M Gnome Druid (feyspeaker/wild whisperer) HP: 11/11 | AC: 19 CMD: 10 | F: 5 R: 2 W: 3 | lowlight vision, Per + 10 (+13 in bright light) SM +7 init +2

Yeah I hear enough empty platitudes from all the fairies, chuk. But like well whatever The nearly bleached gnome sighs, even the comforting from the pathfinders had grown droll and predictable.

This is my first real mission for the society. Hopefully it's not dull. A cave full of death traps would really do the trick right about now...

Sovereign Court

NG Male Kitsune | Swashbuckler 1 | Init: +4 | Speed: 30’ | HP: 12 / 12 | Perception: -1, Low-Light Vision | Panache 2 / 2 | AC: 18, Touch: 14, FF: 14 | CMD: 16 | Sovereign Court | Fort: +2, Ref: +6, Will: -1

Conversation with the Tengu is broken off as the sad little gnome makes his entrance. The swashbuckler, a normally effusive and upbeat individual is somewhat taken aback by the morose demeanor of Thornberry. "I beg your pardon Thornberry, but what is this 'bleaching' you speak of? Is it a ritual of some kind? I am glad to hear of your rescue from the slave pits in any case. As for myself, I can do without the death traps. I saw enough of those on my last mission and one of them nearly did me in! I fared only slightly better against the acid spray than did my clothing, but fortunately a wizard-type was able to mend the fabric quite nicely on the spot." He demonstrates by spinning around neatly, showing that the very fine outfit he wears displays no sign of damage. Corwyn is dressed as a fashionably attired explorer in black leather pants and vest, white shirt, black gloves, dark red cloak and a feathered hat.

Sovereign Court

Female L/N Sylph Alchemist/3 | HP: 22/24 | AC/Tch/FF: 18/13/15 | CMB +2; CMD 15 | Fort/Ref/Will +4/6/1 | Init: +3 | Speed 30 ft | Appraise +8, Craft (Alchemy) +13, Disable Device +7, Fly +8, Heal +4, Kn Arc +8, Kn Nat +8, Kn Planes +5, Perception +6, Sleight of Hand +9, Spellcraft +10, Use Magic Device +5 | Active Conditions: None

"A neat mind has a neat appearance and it always pays to represent yourself respectably."

Yanda's clothes are tidy and neat, but not expensive. Very practical artisan's outfit attire.

Grand Lodge

Male Human Wizard/1| AC 13 [17] T 13 FF 10 | HP 6/8 |Fort +1 Ref +2 Will +3 | Per +6 | Init +2 |HotA 6/6

"From my brief experience, Society missions are never dull." Ardain assures the gnome.

Grand Lodge

M Gnome Druid (feyspeaker/wild whisperer) HP: 11/11 | AC: 19 CMD: 10 | F: 5 R: 2 W: 3 | lowlight vision, Per + 10 (+13 in bright light) SM +7 init +2

Thornberry grimaces when the subject of bleaching comes up. He has had to explain this a lot lately.

Gnomes are no like dwarves or humans - we cannot LIVE lives of drudgery. We are creatures who MUST follow our passions no matter what and no matter where they take us. A gnome without passion losing what makes him a gnome - literally. The color drains from our bodies and we slowly turn white - or bleached if you will. Its a fatal condition for most gnomes... like cancer in you humans.


Venture-Captain Roderus finally arrives, and sits down at his desk in the lodge beneath the popular Winding Road Inn in Katapesh. Maps already cover every wall of his workspace, and precarious stacks of journals and papers nearly reach to the ceiling. The venture-captain gives you a strained smile. “Terribly, terribly, sorry. I go out to lunch, and on the way back, some FOOL in an overloaded rickshaw drops an old vase on the street, which turns out to have been holding a small portal to Abaddon! Took a traveling wizard, a druid, a local antiquarian, and myself the better part of the afternoon just to beat back the daemons and seal the damned thing! Lovely, isn't it? Around here, any half-literate idiot with enough money can just swipe up whatever barely-comprehensible artifact they think looks pretty, and toss it on top of a rickshaw held together more by its gilding than the workmanship of its wood! Be that as it may...."

He composes himself. "Welcome, Pathfinders. I hope YOUR journey here was not too arduous. I have a fascinating assignment for you.” He plucks a single sheet of paper from the middle of pile on his desk. “This is a letter from the Osiriani investigator Amenira, who works with the Temple of the All-Seeing Eye. Mercy, the town she mentions in her reports, wasn’t even on our map until now. It’s a small settlement out in the Mana Wastes. Magic is unpredictable out in the Wastes, and it sometimes coalesces into deadly storms. People in Alkenstar reported seeing one of these magical disturbances heading in the direction of Mercy, but the town weathered the fearsome storm without so much as a scratch.”

Knowledge (Religion) DC 15, OR DC 10 if you worship Nethys:
The Temple of the All-Seeing Eye is the most prominent temple of Nethys, god of magic.

He hands you Amenira's letter:
12 Lamashan 4715:

After six months in Mercy, the local priests are still not totally cooperative. I am still referred to as “the outsider” and nominally kept under curfew, though they’ve stopped caring when I break it, so long as I keep to myself. The rivalry between the carpenters and the blacksmiths is intensifying, and I’ve noticed restrained violence between the two groups. I will investigate further. The infiltration of the weaver’s home was successful, though brief. I have not yet obtained a sample of the ointment. My illness has been growing steadily worse, which has complicated my work, as it is becoming increasingly difficult to hide. Something shielded Mercy from another mana storm a few days ago. The storm should have razed the town, but it split into two fronts that bypassed the town before recombining. I strongly doubt that the priests here have the power to evoke such a miracle. Is there an artifact in or near Mercy? Further inquiries are required."

The venture-captain clears his throat once you are done with the letter. “One of my contacts at the temple received this missive from her four months ago, and he hasn’t heard anything from her since. I’m sending you to Mercy to figure out why. If she’s still there, ask her why she hasn’t contacted anyone in months, and help her finish her investigation...and if she isn’t, find out what happened to her. While you are there, see how much of the mystery of Mercy you can unravel. Several of the clergy within the temple are intensely curious about why the mana storm didn’t level the town, and so am I. I will gladly provide you with additional pay for the information that you retrieve. I’ve booked a ship to the city of Alkenstar, which is a few days’ journey from Mercy itself. The ship departs in three hours. You’ll have time to purchase supplies when you arrive. If you have any questions, ask them now.”

Sovereign Court

Female L/N Sylph Alchemist/3 | HP: 22/24 | AC/Tch/FF: 18/13/15 | CMB +2; CMD 15 | Fort/Ref/Will +4/6/1 | Init: +3 | Speed 30 ft | Appraise +8, Craft (Alchemy) +13, Disable Device +7, Fly +8, Heal +4, Kn Arc +8, Kn Nat +8, Kn Planes +5, Perception +6, Sleight of Hand +9, Spellcraft +10, Use Magic Device +5 | Active Conditions: None

Yanda takes some notes writing down

Mercy - city,

  • may have artifact
  • how large is it?
  • what is the type of government?

    Mana storms - do research on trip

    Ameneria - contact in city, spy

  • how long has she been there?
  • what is her affliction?
  • is the ointment supposed to help her?
  • how is the temple of the all-seeing eye involved?
  • do they have a temple in the city

    craft wars - capenters and blacksmiths

  • why?
  • How are the weavers involved?

    Extra pay

  • How much? probably depends

    She jumps in at the first opportunity to ask her first question and will rapidly go down her list if given the opportunity.

    "How large is this Mercy and what kind of supplies will be there? What is the government like."

  • Grand Lodge

    M Gnome Druid (feyspeaker/wild whisperer) HP: 11/11 | AC: 19 CMD: 10 | F: 5 R: 2 W: 3 | lowlight vision, Per + 10 (+13 in bright light) SM +7 init +2

    Thornberry listens with a macabre sigh " So this is just a simple rescue mission...well okay "

    But as the description goes on and it describes that the town of Mercy is some big exception his ears perk and a bit of swriling green fills in his faint tattoos for a moment .

    Why would there be a rivalry between blacksmiths and carpenters? Some kind of race to see who can defoul nature faster?

    What do you think she means by ointment and illness? Was that already known to your contacts at the All-Seeing eye?

    Grand Lodge

    Male Human Wizard/1| AC 13 [17] T 13 FF 10 | HP 6/8 |Fort +1 Ref +2 Will +3 | Per +6 | Init +2 |HotA 6/6

    "Are they building something out there?" Ardain doesn't think blacksmiths and carpenters would normally be at odds. Their respective products fill different niches.

    Silver Crusade

    AC 16, touch 11, flat-footed 16 (+5 armor, +1 trait) hp 21 (2d10+4) Fort +8, Ref +3, Will +6; +2 vs. enchantments

    know religion 1d20 + 5 ⇒ (7) + 5 = 12

    The information is unknown to the paladin


    Firewarden Yanda wrote:


    "How large is this Mercy and what kind of supplies will be there? What is the government like."

    “It’s a small town roughly twenty miles south of Alkenstar. Ask around when you arrive in Alkenstar, and I’m certain you’ll find someone who knows more about it than I do.”

    "One thing I *definitely* don't know about it is its internal politics." He glances at the letter for a moment. "You're right, of course - the notion of carpenters and smiths acting like rival street gangs is pretty damned strange. Then again, I'm the venture-captain of KATAPESH, what do I know?!?" He emits a short, bitter laugh. "I'll tell you this much: Folk who've lived in the cities all their lives may love to believe in the idyllic harmony of small town life, but it's. A. Lie. Rural communities are snakepits of intrigue and hopeless petty feuds, as bad as any Taldan or Tian noble court, and if they smell a reason to do so, they will drag you in. Soooo...might want to watch out for that." He shrugs. "Then again, Mercy's its own place. A good adventurer keeps an open mind. Of course, *keeping* an open mind inevitably involves keeping others from putting things in it that would, itself, prevent you from putting OTHER things in so-" He picks up a heavy book and swats himself in the face with it. "*THWUMP!* Welcome, Pathfinders! What were we talking about?"

    Thornberry wrote:


    "What do you think she means by ointment and illness? Was that already known to your contacts at the All-Seeing eye?"

    "EXCELLENT questions! I wish I knew. The temple didn't tell me a thing, so either they're hiding something, or the scope of their vision is vastly overstated. My best guess is she caught one of the worse sides of the Mana Wastes. The Wastes are a dangerous place, particularly the farther you stray from pockets of civilization. The war between Geb and Nex millennia ago devastated the land, physically and metaphysically, and the scars linger to this day. Expect areas where magic doesn’t work or becomes unpredictable. Clouds of poison and storms of terrible power erupt spontaneously. There are mutated creatures, undead horror, and monstrous scavengers, among other things. Use your best judgment, be ready for danger, and don’t go wandering off into the Wastes more than absolutely necessary."

    Any other questions? Last call before you're shuttled off to Alkenstar.

    Grand Lodge

    M Gnome Druid (feyspeaker/wild whisperer) HP: 11/11 | AC: 19 CMD: 10 | F: 5 R: 2 W: 3 | lowlight vision, Per + 10 (+13 in bright light) SM +7 init +2

    Oh my god, this is my first interaction with the VC and already he's becoming a fan favorite

    Well if the wastes are so dangerous! You can see that this prospect is already exciting the previously macabre gnome Surely you must have some way to MAXIMIZE the danger right? Maybe some kind of wild magic bait? Or the opposite for these people who are all like 'oh look at me I'm a pathfinder, I don't like death traps'.


    Thornberry wrote:


    Well if the wastes are so dangerous! You can see that this prospect is already exciting the previously macabre gnome Surely you must have some way to MAXIMIZE the danger right? Maybe some kind of wild magic bait? Or the opposite for these people who are all like 'oh look at me I'm a pathfinder, I don't like death traps'.

    The Venture-Captain stares at Thornberry for a second or two in stock-still silence.

    "'Maximizing the danger' means 'everyone is certain do die.'"

    Another couple seconds of stillness and silence pass.

    "That's just mathematics."

    Another pause, but this time around he relaxes a bit.

    "'Wild magic bait' is an interesting idea. Thing about wild magic is, YOU DON'T KNOW. It doesn't 'maximize the danger' - it could just as easily MINIMIZE it. Or make it go away altogether. Or turn everybody's weapons into stargazer pies. Or grant you immortality. Or turn you into a pillar of salt. S'not a death-trap, really...but it can easily be a risk far beyond your abilities."

    Suddenly he realizes the implications of what he's saying and who he's saying it to, and he slaps his hand over his mouth. Then the other one over his forehead.

    "The Mana Wastes are NOT the First World. Let's be clear on that. More common there than true 'wild magic' is dead magic, where the weight of a sort of magical smog means that far from anything being possible, almost NOTHING is. It's a very...dull way to get killed, some starving local fauna or scurvy bandit whom you could normally defeat handily managing to beat you with brute force because you've been caught without your magic."

    "Anyway, we haven't got any 'wild magic bait,' so the point is quite moot."

    Sovereign Court

    NG Male Kitsune | Swashbuckler 1 | Init: +4 | Speed: 30’ | HP: 12 / 12 | Perception: -1, Low-Light Vision | Panache 2 / 2 | AC: 18, Touch: 14, FF: 14 | CMD: 16 | Sovereign Court | Fort: +2, Ref: +6, Will: -1

    Corwyn never glances at Thornberry, either the swashbuckler didn't hear the gnome's backhanded jab or he chose to ignore. Or perhaps he didn't get it? Hard to tell, but in any case his eyes seem to glaze over as the Venture-Captain speaks, either bored or as if seeing something else dance before his eyes.

    In truth, the swashbuckler is imagining the adventure and glory to be had in a faraway land, in a small town with a powerful magical artifact that somehow keeps deadly magical storms from devastating the buildings and the people that live there. Why do they fight each other? Don't they realize how lucky they are to be living in such a miraculous place? Oooh! Maybe the town is built upon an ancient burial ground belonging to one of these kingdoms of Geb and Nex? Perhaps there is a powerful wizard or lich buried beneath the sands, still exerting his will upon the lands, just waiting to be discovered by a daring group of tomb raid... err... adventurers! His fabulous wealth and trove of magic aching to be plucked from the vault where they have lain untouched for millennia...

    He nearly has to slap himself out of his reverie as Roderus begins winding down. "Err... excuse me. This... Amenira, was it? She mentioned that the folks in town didn't seem to trust her, kept calling her an outsider. Was it because she was known as a Pathfinder? Or simply because she was a priestess not known to the local temple? Or because she was new to town? That is, should we keep our identity as Pathfinders a secret?"

    Nice one, Thorn! You folks will notice that Corwyn isn't exactly the brightest sunrod in the box at times - especially where common sense is involved. Which is usually why he has a rough time with traps. He'll get better in the near future, but for now he seems to keep springing them rather than finding them.


    Corwyn Silvermane wrote:


    "Err... excuse me. This... Amenira, was it? She mentioned that the folks in town didn't seem to trust her, kept calling her an outsider. Was it because she was known as a Pathfinder? Or simply because she was a priestess not known to the local temple? Or because she was new to town? That is, should we keep our identity as Pathfinders a secret?"

    "Well...like I said, we don't really know anything about Mercy's internal politics. But I wouldn't worry about that too much. The simple and unavoidable fact of you being outsiders will probably eclipse the significance of any affiliations you hold out here. I'm sure the same is true of Amenira. They called her 'outsider' because she was. That's the way it is in remote rural communities: They're 'Us,' and everyone else, from everywhere else, is 'Them,' and seldom if ever is it possible to cross that boundary."

    Sovereign Court

    NG Male Kitsune | Swashbuckler 1 | Init: +4 | Speed: 30’ | HP: 12 / 12 | Perception: -1, Low-Light Vision | Panache 2 / 2 | AC: 18, Touch: 14, FF: 14 | CMD: 16 | Sovereign Court | Fort: +2, Ref: +6, Will: -1

    Corwyn nods, then slaps the hilt of his rapier and flourishes his garish red cloak. "Well then, it sounds as though we have our mission! Avoid the magic storms, find the girl if we can, and determine what's so special about this town called Mercy. I do believe I'm ready to board this ship right this moment. Err... what was the name of the ship again, by the way? Oh! Alkenstar? That's right. Oh, three hours, eh? Well, fortunately for me there's an taproom right above our heads. Sounds like a drink or two and maybe a bite to eat is in order. Anyone care to join me?"

    The swashbuckler is ready to head out after partaking of a few last portside luxuries first.


    "Alkenstar's where the ship is headed..." Says Roderus, giving his forehead one last slap before sending you off.

    Your ship travels down the coast of the Obari Ocean, tacks northwest up the Elemion River, then sails south down the Ustradi River, finally stopping at the city of Alkenstar. It docks slightly short of a five-hundred-foot-tall waterfall in the middle of the city, where southbound ships painstakingly ride a winding elevator to the river above. Nearby, carriages wait to lead passengers into the smog-covered city.

    Here's your chance to shop and gather information. After this, you're headed down the rabbit-hole....

    Diplomacy or Knowledge (Local) DC 15:
    Mercy is located a little over 20 miles south of Alkenstar. The people there worship an obscure nature deity. Rumors speak of a vampire who occasionally hunts
    travelers along the road.

    Diplomacy or Knowledge (Local) DC 20:
    The people of Mercy have a reputation for being insular and extremely devout to their god Robori. The town has rigid, inflexible rules, but the quality of its harvests encourages traders to occasionally stop by the town to purchase produce.

    Diplomacy or Knowledge (Local) DC 25:
    For the past year, an Osiriani woman from Mercy named Amenira came to Alkenstar every month. She traded for supplies and sent large collections of letters before returning to Mercy.

    Sovereign Court

    NG Male Kitsune | Swashbuckler 1 | Init: +4 | Speed: 30’ | HP: 12 / 12 | Perception: -1, Low-Light Vision | Panache 2 / 2 | AC: 18, Touch: 14, FF: 14 | CMD: 16 | Sovereign Court | Fort: +2, Ref: +6, Will: -1

    "Ah! Right! Got it!" Corwyn waves at Roderus over his shoulder, forgetting where exactly they are headed precisely fifteen minutes after walking out of the Venture-Captain's office. Still, the swashbuckler makes it to the ship in time to set sail with the others, and when they arrive at the five-hundred foot falls some days later he gazes raptly over the bow, staring upward at the southbound ships making their painstaking way along the elevator leading tot he river above. "Seems so... unnecessary." The sailor shakes his head. "Sea travel is much more straightforward. Catch the tide, heave to, square the sails and all that, eh? This is... it's unnatural, is what it is. But fascinating, I'll grant you that!" Whether he is speaking to anyone or just himself depends on the proximity of his companions, but it doesn't seem to particularly matter to Corwyn.

    He isn't terribly impressed with the smog-covered city itself, and is looking forward to the open road when they make their way toward Mercy. The folk there might not be pleasant, but at least he won't be forced to breath in the unpleasant air that lingers over Alkenstar. Or... was that the name of the ship? Corwyn shrugs, taking another drink of his ale and strikes up a conversation with any of the locals in the tavern where he has quite suddenly found himself. Whether or not they are willing to talk with the garrulous swashbuckler, and though at least he's a pleasant conversationalist most of the time, he often cannot stop talking enough to listen to what others might be telling him.

    Diplomacy Check: 1d20 + 6 ⇒ (3) + 6 = 9

    Hmm... yep, that dice result sounds about right!

    Sovereign Court

    Female L/N Sylph Alchemist/3 | HP: 22/24 | AC/Tch/FF: 18/13/15 | CMB +2; CMD 15 | Fort/Ref/Will +4/6/1 | Init: +3 | Speed 30 ft | Appraise +8, Craft (Alchemy) +13, Disable Device +7, Fly +8, Heal +4, Kn Arc +8, Kn Nat +8, Kn Planes +5, Perception +6, Sleight of Hand +9, Spellcraft +10, Use Magic Device +5 | Active Conditions: None

    Yanda perks up and adds some new notes at the mention of poison clouds and mutations.

  • Note: See about making mana waste poison bombs that mutate.

    Yanda arrives at the boat toting a wheeled contraption carrying her luggage and a portable lab. I had her buy a mule but, if allowed, I reskin the mule as this wheeled contraption.

    During the voyage you may see Yanda above decks maybe once a day. The rest of the time she is researching and experimenting, and will set up her lab and conduct dangerous experiments if possible. Fortunately for all of you, most captains frown on alchemist experiments on board.

    Gather Info: 1d20 ⇒ 1

    When you get to port she is not at all interested in wasting her time chatting people up for info about the the town. She is deep into the metamagical principles of the mana waste and how it can be harnessed in a bomb or mutagen.

  • Grand Lodge

    M Gnome Druid (feyspeaker/wild whisperer) HP: 11/11 | AC: 19 CMD: 10 | F: 5 R: 2 W: 3 | lowlight vision, Per + 10 (+13 in bright light) SM +7 init +2

    Thornberry immediately balances some as he learns that the Mana Wastes actually suck and are not at all fun. He is back to being just a light dusting of seafoam and his tattoos go back to being invisible. Oh well...

    Thornberry purchases a single scrolls of cure moderate wounds.

    While at the market has asks around about this Mercy place. He produces some nice shiny junk to get people to talk to him Diplomacy: 1d20 + 9 + 2 ⇒ (10) + 9 + 2 = 21

    Apparently they worship a nature deity of some sort. That's pretty neat. These people like trees like me. Robori is the name. Must be some kind of local hero-god. They should convert to worship of the Lost Prince. He was excited for a moment before hearing about the rules.

    Oh and apparently...they have all kinds of weird rigid rules. Lame.

    Grand Lodge

    Male Human Wizard/1| AC 13 [17] T 13 FF 10 | HP 6/8 |Fort +1 Ref +2 Will +3 | Per +6 | Init +2 |HotA 6/6

    Diplomacy: 1d20 ⇒ 17

    Ardain is lucky to find some friendly locals who tell him a bit about the area.

    "Mercy is about 20 miles south of Alkenstar. Folks hereabouts seem to think a vampire sometimes hunts along the road."

    Sovereign Court

    NG Male Kitsune | Swashbuckler 1 | Init: +4 | Speed: 30’ | HP: 12 / 12 | Perception: -1, Low-Light Vision | Panache 2 / 2 | AC: 18, Touch: 14, FF: 14 | CMD: 16 | Sovereign Court | Fort: +2, Ref: +6, Will: -1

    Corwyn nods sagely as the others report their findings. "Well, I learned that a local merchant named Marco is concerned that his wife is having an affair with the town blacksmith. But I personally think it's just in retaliation for him sleeping with the barmaid. What's good for the goose and all that, eh?"

    The swashbuckler glances at the position of the sun, and depending on whether they have any time left in the day he suggests they either head out right then to get a few hours' clear of the smog-filled city or find a decent inn if it's too late for travel.

    Dark Archive

    HP 19/19; AC 16 13t 13f; f 2, r 6, w 3; bab 1, melee +2, ranged +5; cmb 0, cmd 13; init +3; inspir 4/5; wclw 48; folio reroll 1/1 | wayang investigator (empiricist)/2 | -22
    skills:
    acro 3, apprs 4, craft alch 9, diplo 8, disable 9, escape 3, kn hist 8, kn religion 8, kn engrg 8, kn local 8,kn nat 8, kn nob 8, kn planes 8, kn rel 8, ling 8, perc 9/10 traps, splcrft 8, stlh 8, sm 4, umd 9

    know local: 1d20 + 8 + 1d6 ⇒ (18) + 8 + (1) = 27

    Jack ran up to the ship at the last minute, having missed the briefing completely.... "Hey wait for me!" He jumped across the widening waters between the dock and the ship as it pulled away from the dock and barely caught the deck railing and pulled himself up to stand on teh deck with the others. "Sorry I'm so late...I was um... busy?... anyway, didn't get the call til late in the morning, and well, can't disappoint a lady, yanno?" He straightens his clothing, swaths of grey and black cloth under a non-descript grey cloak.

    By the time the ship puts into the dock at Alkenstar, he's gotten to know each of you a little... and reiterates his apologies at least one or two more times... The splindly-limbed wayang doesn't have much to say about himself, only that he's a student of all things, with a deep interest in both alchemy and magic. On the journey, it becomes quickly apparent that despite his tiny frame, he's got a prodigious appetite and eats large amounts of whatever he can get his hands on.

    After doing a little research in town, he advises you, "You know, the locals say an Osiriani woman named Almenira came to town every month for a year, trading for supplies and posting lots of letters. When do we leave for Mercy?"


    If anyone still has purchases they would have liked to make in Alkenstar, just say you did so in your next post or two.

    Before you know it, you are on your way to Mercy.

    The dirt road toward Mercy winds through rocky, tree-lined hills. Sporadic clearings occur where large sections of trees have been destroyed or damaged. Some are only missing a few branches, while others have been split almost in half vertically or chopped down to a short stump. The exposed wood is black and perfectly smooth. One such clearing reveals the opening of a narrow cave in the hillside. The trail splits, leading both into the cave and off to the north.

    Knowledge (Nature) DC 15:
    The black sheen on the remains of the trees is burnt sap.

    Perception DC 15:
    What's much odder than the debris in the area is the fact that there ought to be more of it.

    DM screen:
    ?S: 1d20 ⇒ 19

    P:
    Jack: 1d20 + 9 ⇒ (2) + 9 = 11
    Talondreal: 1d20 + 2 ⇒ (4) + 2 = 6
    Kristoff: 1d20 + 10 ⇒ (3) + 10 = 13
    Ardain: 1d20 + 6 ⇒ (11) + 6 = 17
    Corwyn: 1d20 - 1 ⇒ (17) - 1 = 16
    Yanda: 1d20 + 6 ⇒ (5) + 6 = 11
    Thornberry: 1d20 + 12 ⇒ (5) + 12 = 17
    Holy cow.

    I:
    G: 1d20 ⇒ 2
    H: 1d20 + 2 ⇒ (10) + 2 = 12
    Jack: 1d20 + 3 ⇒ (10) + 3 = 13
    Talondreal: 1d20 + 3 ⇒ (14) + 3 = 17
    Kristoff: 1d20 + 5 ⇒ (20) + 5 = 25
    Ardain: 1d20 + 2 ⇒ (3) + 2 = 5
    Corwyn: 1d20 + 4 ⇒ (1) + 4 = 5
    Yanda: 1d20 + 3 ⇒ (7) + 3 = 10
    Thornberry: 1d20 + 2 ⇒ (4) + 2 = 6

    Everyone please place your tokens in the box indicated....

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