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Thirst - A Ravenloft PbP

Game Master Celestial Healer

Set in the land of Ravenloft, a band of intrepid heroes searches for a way home, but their fate may be inextricably tied to a vain, power-hungry madman. Uses the Pathfinder ruleset.


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Silver Crusade

Male Celestial Cleric of Myself 10/Radiant Servant of Me 10

The village of Breden and the surrounding countryside have been terrorized by a series of disappearances. Most folk are afraid to go out alone, especially after dark. The superstitious townspeople have circulated all sorts of outlandish rumors about what may be plaguing their village, but until recently no one knew for sure. Just yesterday, however, a trio of local hunters scouting the land for game stumbled upon a horrific stash of human corpses in the vicinity of Lord Gilbraith's tower.

Lord Gilbraith was already widely feared for his cruelty, with some speculating he is some sort of demon in disguise. More educated travelers know he is merely a man, but the rumors have only intensified due to the exsanguinated state in which the corpses were found.

Father Sanville, a highly educated village elder, had the opportunity to examine the bodies before they were interred. He found that they were killed through mundane means, probably an ordinary blade, consistent with the view that Gilbraith is as mortal as he seems. However, he also caught wind from one of his brethren abroad that Gilbraith has been inquiring into methods of extending his life. Lord Gilbraith believes that by enacting some sort of ritual in which he drinks an innocent victim's blood, he can transcend mortality as a vampire and spend eternity expanding his power. Father Sanville knows of no such ritual and suspects what he is trying is impossible, but that is no comfort to the families of those he has slain in his attempts.

The matter has gained fresh urgency as a young woman named Lenna was abducted while tending her garden at the edge of the village in broad daylight. It appears that Lord Gilbraith will be making another attempt at immortality tonight, and his reign of terror must be brought to an end.

***

Nathaniel and Angalia:
Nathaniel's sister Lenna is known for her good nature and love of gardening. She has a particular fondness for lilies, although she has a talent for tending all sorts of blooming things.

Tiffana:
Last night, your sleep was disturbed by a horrible dream. You were standing in a field, but all of the plants were brown and dead, save a single bloom standing by itself. As you approached, the flower began to bleed. You wrapped your hands about it, and then a scrap of cloth, but it only bled more, covering your hands and the ground at your feet.

When you learned of Lenna's abduction from her garden, you wondered if there was a connection.

***

Lord Gilbraith resides in a short square tower perched on a low, rocky rise. He is known to employ a small band of hired blades to do his bidding and serve as his bodyguards. It is probably these who abducted most of his victims. His tower has two known entrances: the front door and a smaller cellar door around the left side of the tower. Its only windows are set in the top floor, about 60 feet off the ground.

***

Evening is fast approaching, and Father Sanville fears what the darkness may hold for young Lenna. The weather is damp and cold, but this errand cannot wait.

Before you, on a short rise, looms Lord Gilbraith's unadorned stone tower. In the deepening twilight, you can make out the soft glow of light from the tower's upper windows. For the time being, you can see the tower clearly, although you suspect that will not last, as a thick fog is slowly creeping across the hills.


Male Human Ranger (Skirmisher) 3

“Enough contemplation,” growls Nathaniel. The normally good natured man’s jaw is set, and there is an ugly look in his dark eyes, though his face is mostly hidden by the brim of the hood of his hunting cloak and the lengthening twilight shadows. His knuckles are white, his hand clenched tightly around the haft of his axe. “I thank you all for coming this far. If you go further, things will get violent – I am going in there to get my sister back, whoever is coming with me – let’s move.”


Male Human Ranger (Skirmisher) 3

Previously, Nathaniel had suggested to his companions that they try the rear door ... presumably because he thinks that one would be easier to batter or cut down, because it doesn’t appear he is in the mood for knocking. Wiser heads may be able to convince him of a better plan ...


The gnome, strange as he was clad only in a leather cord and body paints, bore a look of serious consternation on his brow and nodded to the ranger's intent.

"No more blood will taint the soil of this land. Tonight this must end, for I feel an ill omen on the winds."

He hoisted his spear, almost comically long for such a short person, its myriad charms and chimes whispering softly as it moves with him.

"Tarry not, friends. The hour of action is upon us!"


Male Human Cleric/5 {HP:42/42, AC 16}

"I know we have only just met Nathaniel, but I believe time is of the essence! If the stories the farmers told me are true, we don't have time for a subtle approach. I will back you up with my Great Sword and my healing powers! No harm shall come to your dear sister."

Res swings his great sword slightly preparing for any attacks as the group makes it way toward the tower.


Male Elf, Desert Runner 1st Level Fighter, Two Handed Fighter

will finish real soon, been too busy IRL


female Human Rogue 4

Angalia looks thoughtfully at the Tower.

"Can we at least try to be quiet?" she mutters, scanning the landscape for any sign of Gilbraith's hired goons.


The tower appears to be quiet, and there is no obvious movement on the landscape.

How do you plan on approaching?


male human Bard 1 - Savage Skald

from earlier this day

Tif, wake up- you're moaning. Is it another nightmare? What is it this time?


Male Human Ranger (Skirmisher) 3
Angalia wrote:

Angalia looks thoughtfully at the Tower.

"Can we at least try to be quiet?" she mutters, scanning the landscape for any sign of Gilbraith's hired goons.

Nathaniel glances at Angalia, and notices how calm she looks and sounds. “Yeah … yes, you’re right.” The woodsman forces himself to stop and think, rather than charging in and dealing with anything that got in his way with his axe, as seemed to be the extent of his plan to date.

He looks up at the darkening sky, then down the hill towards the rising fog. He realizes that some of his companions seem naturally stealthier than others, while some, including the armoured Res and the short legged Erfan are slowing down the group as a whole.

“Right, we probably have a chance to approach unseen, but not so large a group. What about, the four of us,” he indicates the people who seem best able to move quickly and quietly, himself, Angalia, ‘Kani and Eliva, “try to sneak in close, heading towards the back door. The rest of you,” Res, Erfan, Thailon and Tiffana, “keep heading straight towards the tower, front door. We’ll move a little ways apart. Once there … well, each group try to find a way in, the first one to get it signal the other.”

It remains unsaid but obvious that the ‘louder’ group is likely to draw any manned defense of the tower towards itself … but of course the ‘quieter’ group may then be able to ambush or flank that defense. The two groups should probably remain at least about fifty or sixty feet or so away from each other.

Unless there are any objections or other suggestions, Nathaniel keeps moving in accordingly, using stealth. He swaps his axe in hand for his bow for now, and tries to keep alert for danger, eyes and ears open.

Stealth: 1d20 + 6 ⇒ (18) + 6 = 24
Perception: 1d20 + 6 ⇒ (8) + 6 = 14


Erfan nods at Nathaniel's instructions before briefly intoning a mystical phrase and pointing at the ranger.

The gnome whispers into the wind, his voice manifesting as though his mouth were directly upon Nathaniel's shoulder. "My voice is with you, Nathaniel Greenfellow. You can whisper back to me if your group is successful and I will do the same."

Message lasts 10 minutes and as long as we're within 110', we can communicate in whispers.


Female Half Orc Inquisitor 5 {HP:28/30}

Eliva's brow wrinked a bit at Nathaniel's suggestion.

"I worry about what happens once we enter the tower - splitting up inside could weaken both groups to the point where we both fall. Let's have those of us who can move quickly with stealth move up to the door, and we can guard the approach of the others. Once inside, we would be together, rather than separated by stone walls and guards that know the tower much better than we do."

Eliva turned and scanned the tower and its immediate surroundings for any clues to the location of Gilbraith's thugs as she removed her buckler from her arm. She may regret the loss of the protection in the keep, but it would make it easier to approach the keep stealthily.

She had said her piece, and would do what the group decided was best. A little blessing from Erastil wouldn't be out of place, however. They were still far enough from the tower that calling to her god would not reveal their presence. Holding onto her holy symbol, Eliva asked for Erastil's blessing on herself.

Eliva has guidance for the next minute: +1 to a single d20 roll, declared before rolled.

Perception: 1d20 + 6 ⇒ (13) + 6 = 19
Stealth: 1d20 + 7 ⇒ (13) + 7 = 20


Eliva's watchful eye notes a faint point of light in the front of the tower. She suspects there is some sort of small opening to permit those inside to scan the approach and to communicate with those outside the door. If that is the case, someone watching from the inside may be able to see anyone approaching the front door. The group is currently a safe distance away and most likely out of sight.


Female Half Orc Inquisitor 5 {HP:28/30}

Eliva hissed as her eyes spotted the faint gleam of light from the front door, and crouched a little in unconcious wariness. "I see that the front is watched. Can you see light from the front door? Approaching it would be a bad decision, I think. We should circle around the back from here. Windows could still remark our approach, but I know the front is under watch at this moment."


How close could we get to the tower while still under the cloak of trees and/or darkness? I presume there's a clearing around it, but how far? 100 feet? 200? More/less?


With the twilight as it is, they can probably see about 100 feet out. There is scrub to use for cover, so closer than that you would need to make Stealth checks to hide.


female Human Rogue 4

"I'm not sure about splitting up. At least not that much. Hold on a minute."

Angalia gestures frantically at the the departing Nat and Erfan and offers an alternative suggestion.

"Anyone Gilbraith knows already needs to lurk. But what about the others? Can they just go to the door quite openly, maybe. Offering to help him. Gilbraith is an arrogant pig, he'd love the idea that his fame's spread so far that people will offer to join his disgusting cult. Everyone else sneak as close as possible and get ready to pounce while the arguing goes on. At this point, the main thing is to get inside intact."


male human Bard 1 - Savage Skald

Tifa and I can play the 'arrogant players sent by peasants to the lord's keep to teach them a lesson' card. Maybe some smirking locals hauling our stuff can charge when we get the door open?


female Human Rogue 4

"That's much better. None of us need to hide anything other than our weapons that way."


male human Bard 1 - Savage Skald

Can I still cast Flare Burst? It makes for a more dramatic entry.


female Human Rogue 4

"Be my guest. With luck it might blind some of morons on guard. Wouldn't that be lovely." Angalia grins in the dark.


Female Half Orc Inquisitor 5 {HP:28/30}

"Well," Eliva said, "this lord doesn't know me, but I don't know I could lie believably - and being in close makes my bow less useful. If you need me to lend credence to your claims, I don't think I'd help much."

She paused for a moment, then said more slowly, "I'm not sure how widespread knowledge would be of his...activities. It might better to pretend to be loyal subjects rushing to tell him of an angry mob forming at the village and begging for protection and favor from him. They will be concerned about dangers from outside, not those inside, and we won't have to fake knowledge of his foul rituals or explain how we know of them. We will appear to be hapless nobodies, instead of strangers with dangerous knowledge of Galbraith's secret activities."


Female Human (Gypsy) Dreamspun Sorceress 4
'Kani wrote:

from earlier this day

Tif, wake up- you're moaning. Is it another nightmare? What is it this time?

When her friend shook her awake, she sat bolt upright, her eyes wide with the fresh terror of yet another dream "Why" she thought, "Can I never dream of money or puppies?".

"Yes 'Kani, it twas a 'nother dream, She hesitates reaching for his arm and giving a gentle, but sad squeeze. "And what it means.... it means that that fool will throw his life away for a sister already not of this world. We must go luv, as surely as we do not wish it."

Tif would honestly like to try and sweet talk her way in, if 'Kani will follow her that is.


Male Human Ranger (Skirmisher) 3

Nathaniel’s clenched jaw and furrowed brow betray his impatience, but he’s wise enough to realise that eight heads are better than one in formulating a solid plan – and that if he charges in by himself he’ll likely just get killed and do Lenna no good.

“Whatever we decide, let’s do it fast,” he mutters, “before we’re spotted, or it gets so dark out here we need lanterns to find our way.” He doesn’t add what else might happen if they wait too long – everyone knows the stakes.

“If we want to try one door only, I think an approach out of sight, towards the rear door, away from that window, as Eliva says, is a better option. But if you think you can convince those within to open the doors ...” Nathaniel shrugs. Given Gilbraith’s reputation, Nathaniel thinks it likely enough that they will be greeted by slings and arrows before having a chance to talk with a direct approach. But he does not know for sure, and as time passes he begins to doubt himself.


male human Bard 1 - Savage Skald

flashes winning smile

I've seen Tiffa talk her into, and out of, more trouble than one nuttso nobleman's tower. And if that doesn't work, the nuttso may accept a free shot at another victim. Plus there's that whole "nobler to suffer the slings and arrows" thing going on.


Male Human Cleric/5 {HP:42/42, AC 16}

"I think trying to bluff our way in is the best course of action. I can enhance whomever we choose to gain us entry with my touch of glory +1 to Cha based checks to improve their chances of succeeding. Also, I can offer them a shield of faith to protect them if things go badly. Depending on what tale we wish to tell, my being a stranger to these parts may assist in explaining our reason for approaching the tower. Perhaps, Lord Gilbraith may see some advantage to having a cleric of Gorum assisting him."


Female Half Orc Inquisitor 5 {HP:28/30}

Eliva nods at Nathaniel, understanding and sympathizing with his impatience. "Yes, all right. Do you think I should still try to approach from the shadows...or shall I go forward with you openly? I can offer you a small blessing from Erastil as well, Miss Tiffa, if you wish?"

I can offer guidance for a +1 to a roll within the next minute...then unless asked to do otherwise, she'll sneak around to the side a bit more and begin sneaking up to the tower at a side with no entrances, in order to get close to the side of a door without being noticed.


male human Bard 1 - Savage Skald

Once we start coming towards the front door, you can do your final approach towards the side of the tower- we'll be a distraction.

That gives Tiffa a +2 to her bluff, with an assist by me.


So what's the plan?


Male Human Cleric/5 {HP:42/42, AC 16}

"If I may be so bold, Tiffa, allow me to apply Gorum's touch of glory to you to enhance your tale that the guards at the door will believe you."

Assuming that Tiffa agrees, Res touches his holy symbol of Gorum and asks Gorum to apply his touch of glory to Tiffa.

"and in case your tale is not believed, do you wish me to cast Shield of faith upon you to improve your protection from our enemies weapons." If Tiffa accepts Res'offer he murmurs a prayer to Gorum and a flash comes from the holy symbol filling Tiffa with the improved ability to avoid enemy attacks for one minute.

Touch of Glory adds +1 to a charisma check and Shield of Faith adds a +2 deflection bonus for 1 minute. Oh, and normally I can not post during the day, but since I am on vacation I thought I would take advantage of it.


Female Human (Gypsy) Dreamspun Sorceress 4

"It's been my experience that nobles of any stripe have certain.... appetites, perhaps my 'Kani can escort Eliva and myself. Let me see if I can persuade our way in."

The slender gypsy girl accepts the magical aid and links arms with the other as she heads up the path, looking back to make sure her friend 'Kani is following, she seems to lean in to the other woman as if having partook of to much wine giggling as she they approach the mansion.

Well lets see if we can "charm" our way into some trouble. ;)


I'm pretty sure 'Kani is male...


Male Human Ranger (Skirmisher) 3
Eliva Smith wrote:

Eliva nods at Nathaniel, understanding and sympathizing with his impatience. "Yes, all right. Do you think I should still try to approach from the shadows...or shall I go forward with you openly? I can offer you a small blessing from Erastil as well, Miss Tiffa, if you wish?"

I can offer guidance for a +1 to a roll within the next minute...then unless asked to do otherwise, she'll sneak around to the side a bit more and begin sneaking up to the tower at a side with no entrances, in order to get close to the side of a door without being noticed.

Nathaniel nods. “While they’re taking the direct approach, let’s you and me – and anyone else who can move quietly and wants to come – circle around the side.”


female Human Rogue 4

Angalia goes to Nat and lays a hand on his arm. "Come on. We need to lurk a little. Gilbraith would recognise us."

She keeps low and looks for shadows to hide her advance.


female Human Rogue 4

Oops. Cross posted with Nat.


Who is sneaking around the side? (I will need Stealth rolls.)

Who is walking up to the front?


female Human Rogue 4

Quick question - how would you prefer us to do rolls? I usually use the in-house roller for games I'm playing in and home roll for GM rolls purely because flakey boards have occasionally cost me sanity.


Male Human Ranger (Skirmisher) 3

Nathaniel is lurking, aiming to creep close, along with Angalia and (probably) Eliva. If I can carry my un-used stealth roll from above, stealth result is 24.


Angalia wrote:
Quick question - how would you prefer us to do rolls? I usually use the in-house roller for games I'm playing in and home roll for GM rolls purely because flakey boards have occasionally cost me sanity.

I plan on doing the same. So use the in-house roller for PCs.


Male Human Cleric/5 {HP:42/42, AC 16}

I believe Tiffa and Eliva are going up to the front of the tower arm and arm with 'Kani trailing behind. The rest of the group is trying to move closer in the shadows. Although with a -4 in stealth, I don't think Res should move any closer because he will probably blow the entire plan. I think he is better off either staying in brush or accompanying 'Kani. Tiffa, if having Res join in with 'Kani will still support your bluff, he will come along, otherwise he will stay back.


female Human Rogue 4

1d20 + 8 ⇒ (4) + 8 = 12 - Stealth.
Or not.

Angalia holds her breath and then swears very quietly as her feet betray her.

Sorry folks, that was not good. She was aiming to move with the outskirts party of Nat and anyone else.


Male Human Ranger (Skirmisher) 3
Angalia wrote:

1d20+8 - Stealth.

Or not.

Angalia holds her breath and then swears very quietly as her feet betray her.

Sorry folks, that was not good. She was aiming to move with the outskirts party of Nat and anyone else.

Not much a +8 modifier can do for you when you roll a 4! Still, all is not lost ... until we get quite close that result may serve you well, given the -1 per 10 feet distant rule (or more accurately, each 10 feet of distance adds +1 to the perception DC). Even if someone does see or hear you, they don’t know for sure what it is. Let’s not worry until we know the results.


Female Human (Gypsy) Dreamspun Sorceress 4
Nathaniel Greenfellow wrote:
Angalia wrote:

1d20+8 - Stealth.

Or not.

Angalia holds her breath and then swears very quietly as her feet betray her.

Sorry folks, that was not good. She was aiming to move with the outskirts party of Nat and anyone else.

Not much a +8 modifier can do for you when you roll a 4! Still, all is not lost ... until we get quite close that result may serve you well, given the -1 per 10 feet distant rule (or more accurately, each 10 feet of distance adds +1 to the perception DC). Even if someone does see or hear you, they don’t know for sure what it is. Let’s not worry until we know the results.

And maybe they'll be distracted by the girls being "delivered" out front?


Female Human (Gypsy) Dreamspun Sorceress 4
Res Thannq wrote:

I believe Tiffa and Eliva are going up to the front of the tower arm and arm with 'Kani trailing behind. The rest of the group is trying to move closer in the shadows. Although with a -4 in stealth, I don't think Res should move any closer because he will probably blow the entire plan. I think he is better off either staying in brush or accompanying 'Kani. Tiffa, if having Res join in with 'Kani will still support your bluff, he will come along, otherwise he will stay back.

Not sure, I'm winging it. lol


Male Human Ranger (Skirmisher) 3

I think we need to be in 3 groups. The face group is ‘Kani, Tiffa (and whoever else wants to be in it) – they are moving openly towards the front door of the tower.

The stealth group is Nathaniel, Angalia and whoever else wants to be in it – they are trying to move stealthily around to the side of the tower, to get near to but unseen from the front door.

Anyone who isn’t in one of those groups is in the third group, also trying to stay unseen but hanging back. This group should stay at least 60 feet back from the other groups / the tower and approach from the side.

Currently Eliva has been nominated both for the face group and the stealth group.

Res is in the face group or the third group.

Erfan and Thailon are undecided (with charisma 20, erfan could probably help the face group. Thailon should perhaps stay in group 3 with Res.


Nathaniel Greenfellow wrote:
Erfan and Thailon are undecided (with charisma 20, erfan could probably help the face group. Thailon should perhaps stay in group 3 with Res.

Yes, Erfan will accompany the "face" group.

The painted gnome jangles along behind the others bound for the front door, snickering to himself whilst periodically glancing about for signs of any external patrols or lookouts.


Male Human Cleric/5 {HP:42/42, AC 16}

Res hangs back about 60 feet from the tower watching Tiffa, Eliva, 'Kani and Erfan head to front door. He keeps an keen eye out watching for trouble.

Perception 1d20 + 3 ⇒ (10) + 3 = 13


Male Human Ranger (Skirmisher) 3

Nathaniel, along with Angalia (and anybody else who is coming) creeps around in a wide arc to approach the tower from the side. He keeps low, moving in a loping hunch, so as not to present a silhouette against the darkening sky, and makes sure that his weapons are strapped or held tightly, so as not to clash or clink.

Aim is to get within about forty feet of the front doors at about the time the ‘face group’ is arriving there, but out of direct line of sight from the front windows.


male human Bard 1 - Savage Skald

walks along with Tiffa and Eliva

Are we winging the story again? Last time you tried to convince them I was a Forest Spirit seeking tribute from those loggers. Admittly it worked, but I had sap in my hair for days.

Should I give 'em a drumroll to annouce us?


Female Half Orc Inquisitor 5 {HP:28/30}

"I'll do my best to play along with whatever you say," Eliva said nervously. "I hope they like their women tall?" She looked worried. "Can I keep my bow? I'll just try to keep the spiked gauntlets low key..."

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