Eliva saw that Tiffana was in trouble and moved to help her, holding her bow in the hand her buckler was strapped to, and clenching her fist in her spiked gauntlet. She held her gauntlet up threateningly.
"You're overmatched, Sergei! Stop this before it goes too far! You know it's over!" she growled, hoping to make him back down. It was too dangerous to shoot at them while Tiffana and Sergei were grappling.
Move to I-23.
Intimidate: 1d20 + 9 ⇒ (16) + 9 = 25
DC vs Demoralize = 10 + HD + Wis mod, or target is shaken for 1 round, plus 1 round for every 5 points by which the skill check exceeds the DC.
Eliva quickly pulls Tiffana behind her and stands over the cowed Sergei. "Yes, but it was ruined before we arrived, you know." She begins examining him for weapons and removing them while he's still despondent.
Perception: 1d20 + 9 ⇒ (1) + 9 = 10 I miss the greatclub in his back pocket....
He's wielding a longsword. That is very apparent. That is about all you see.
"This place ruins everything," he goes on. "The Powers snuff out all that is good and merry. It was only a matter of time before agents such as yourselves came to bring an end to the joy. Do with me what you will," he says dejectedly.
You can see fine cracks in the walls and ceilings that you could swear were not there moments ago. This basement chamber, like the rooms above, appears as if carved out of a single piece. You can make a Knowledge (Engineering) check if you want to know more.
"Agents of the dark, set to destroy all that is good and fair." He throws down his sword. "I can't fight anymore."
From Angalia's point of view, the building is not eroding very quickly. It looks quite stable and should hold up for at least 30 to 60 minutes.
By now Urdrin has shaken off the laughter and seems concerned by what the others are saying.
Meanwhile, you hear Erfan (again stark naked) call out from the corner among the corpses. "They are smiling!" he says with childlike wonder. He seems fascinated by the frozen rictus of a stiff corpse in front of him.
For his part, Sergei looks panicked. "And now you are bringing down my funhouse!" he says accusitorily. "Surely you know the way out. Those who sent you see everything. They know my thoughts. They know the secrets of this place." He is quite paranoid. You notice, however, that his eyes dart to the two doors to the east.
Sergei looks shaken by Tiffana's threats. "The room on the left is my own. There is a passage from there to one of the outer buildings of the carnival. The room on the right was the Master Jester's. He allowed no one inside."
"I think this one is still alive," Erfan says matter-of-factly, still among the corpses. Indeed, there in the corner of the room is Yuri, the stable hand who aided you earlier in the day. He appears to have been within an inch of his life due to the Laughing Plague and Spindle's abuse. He seems dazed.
Res goes over to where Erfan is standing and examines Yuri. Let me help you the best I can. "Gorum, send your servant your healing power." Res holy symbol glows dimly and everyone in the party plus Yuri feels a positive healing wave.
Channel Positive Energy: 2d6 ⇒ (1, 2) = 3 healing
Res looks concerned. "The aura of this place must be interferring with my connection to Gorum. Let me try again. I'll concentrate even harder." He closes his eyes, and says, "Mighty Gorum, none can deny your will. Break through this evil, and help your humble servant."
Channel Positive Energy: 2d6 ⇒ (2, 4) = 6 healing
Res holy symbol glows little stronger this time. "That should be enough to sustain us until we can get out of this forsaken building."
"If we have time, let's quickly explore the rooms Sergei described in case there is any other foul energies lurking that will continue to harm these people."
Res goes to the room on the right. "Angalia, can you check for traps before I enter?"
Eliva, seeing that Sergei isn't offering any violence or resistance, walks over to Yuri and holds out her hand toward him, trying to avoid startling or scaring him.
"Yuri, thank you for helping us. We would like to help you now. Will you come with us, please? I think it will be nice to get away from from this building, don't you?"
Eliva looked across the room at her companions. "We should search the fey's room - Res is right, there may be something there and could continue his foul influence here. Once we have Yuri to safety, I would like to try to collect these poor people for a decent burial, if we can," she said softly as she encouranged Yuri to follow her.
Yuri nods and wordlessly gets to his feet to follow Eliva.
Sergei winces reflexively as you approach Spindle's door like a child who has never been allowed in his parents' bedchamber.
I am going to proceed with descriptions of the rooms. There's no reason in the denouement of the adventure to make you roll endless Perception checks.
Spindle's chamber is full of odd furnishings. An oversized opalescent sleigh bed takes up much of the chamber. Its rumpled silken bedding lies in disarray, while a seeming excess of pillows is strewn everywhere. A large armoire decorated with colorful inlays stands empty in one corner, while a long lacquered desk takes up much of the near wall.
In contrast to the other furnishings, the battered chest at the foot of the bed looks positively drab. It is unlocked, and contains a stash of interesting objects:
Stuff in the trunk:
Headband of alluring charisma +2
+1 studded leather
Boots of friendly terrain
Cloak of elvenkind
Wand of Divine Favor (23 charges)
Alchemical silver longsword
Wand of Scorching Ray (8 charges)
A magnifying glass
A vial of exotic perfume worth 100 gp
In contrast to this stash, the desk is rather uncluttered. A large drawer contains an unlocked strongbox containing 90 pieces of platinum. Beside the box is a folded letter written in a florid, archaic hand.
The Letter wrote:
Most Magnificent Master of Jesters,
Most sincerely, I trust this letter finds you well. Word reaches me of your wondrous deeds in pursuit of our common cause. Such tidings evince the propriety of our mutual arrangement to such a degree as to at once embolden my efforts and silence my ever prosaic detractors. My kin among the court of Borca with their subtle arts continue to suppress any inclination among the rulership to interfere in the safe conduct of your affairs.
Whilst these earliest stages of the laughing plague show promise, I urge you to hasten your progress in spreading your gift among the gathered Falkovnian infantry. The witless Lord Vlad has superiority in numbers which must be culled if our efforts are to bear fruit.
Though I have no doubt that you have found great sustenance in the execution of your enterprise, you may be assured that your rewards upon completion of our venture will befit one of your wondrous character. Both my kin and our allies to the west look with favor on your role within this undertaking and are prepared to compensate your efforts with a suitable share in the spoils of our campaign.
I eagerly await your next communication, as your correspondence never fails to bring me great delight. Yours, as ever,
Sergei's room, in contrast, is a cluttered mess of worthless junk. As promised, a low wooden door stands on the far side of his chamber.
"Spindle has quite the stash of items," says Res to the others. "What do you make of this note? Someone seems to be opposing Lord Vlad, but can they be much better if they are willing to sacrifice innocent victims in the pursuit of a weapon? It appears to be an underground spy pitting the two countries against each other. I don't know about you, but this T person seems to be just the type of person that Gilbraith would be attracted to given his recent falling out with Lord Vlad. Once we have tied up our loose ends here I think its time to visit the capital of Borca."
Res takes a sheet to make a shift bag to carry Spindle's belongings. "How many bodies are their Eliva? Do we have enough people to carry them all out of here?"
As if to confirm Res's suspicions, when you look upon the letter, particularly the signed letter T, you feel what can only be described as a darkness. It immediately brings to mind the vision you had of a dark presence looking over Gilbraith.
"Let's get everyone who can be saved out first...if the building looks like it will hold together a bit longer, we can come back and remove those victims who have already succumbed to the evil here," Eliva responded. "If it's not safe, we may have to leave them behind...but I would like to try." Eliva helps lead Yuri from the building, looking around to try to judge if the building will hold together long enough for a trip to retrieve a body.
The PCs gather up the letter and the other things they found and begin making their way out of the crumbling building. The cracks are lengthening. A Knowledge (Engineering) check (which can be trained or untrained) is the best way to find out how sound the structure is.
A quick inspection of the bodies reveals that Yuri is the only one living. Since you saw him earlier in the day in good health, you know that he could not have been at Spindle's mercy for very long.
The small wooden door in Sergei's chamber pulls open to reveal a cramped rough-hewn tunnel. It is unlit, but you are able to light your way and navigate the murky space. It leads less than 100 feet to another small wooden door. This door is barred on your side with a piece of rotten wood which you can easily pull aside.
Angalia - you think that in about ten minutes, things could start falling in an unsafe way.
Nathaniel pulls the bar away from the door which opens into a cool root cellar. A rickety staircase ascends to a level above, while a few dusty steps lead to a slanted cellar door to one side. While nothing is stored here, many sets of footprints disturb the dust on the ground.
At that news, Eliva will run back down the the tunnel and try to pull bodies into it before the structure overhead collapses.
She will try to pull smaller people first, to get as many out as possible. If there's time she'll try to pull the fey's body out too to give the people a sense of closure - but the innocent come first. She will try to pull people out for about 5 minutes, then pull back.
if you want me to make any rolls, let me know. Eliva's strength modifier is +2
Res looks at Eliva and sees the pain on her face of a community devastated by this fey monster. He calls out to Eliva, "I'll help you pull the bodies out. You honor Erastil with your actions. The families need to see their fallen loved ones to help their healing." Res goes back into the cellar to drag more bodies into the tunnel.
Res and Eliva are able to pull the bodies into the tunnel, which is quite stable. On each successive trip into the lower level of the funhouse, however, the building is increasingly deteriorated. The structure, which only could have been created by magic, is collapsing under its own weight now that its creator has been destroyed. You recover all of the bodies, including Spindle's, and with little time to spare. Pieces of the walls and ceiling are beginning to fall into the chamber.
Eliva wipes the sweat off her brow with the back of her hand as she watches the building collapse behind them. She looks faintly ill as she looks at the bodies, then visibly draws herself together and sketches a bow in Res's direction.
"Thank you for your help. I know it was an unpleasant task, and I appreciate your aid greatly." She looked down the tunnel, bending down to arrange the bodies with as much dignity as she could. "Maybe we should exit the cellar carefully - I don't know what the situation will be above. Once we have things in hand we can let the villagers know where the last victims lie. We can then judge if revealing the remains of the one who did them harm would help them, or lead to more pain."
"You are welcome," answers Res to Eliva. "The only thing we have to keep us from falling into madness in this place is our faith. Though are gods may be distant, we must keep our faith and live to true to their ideals. You have respected my faith, I can only offer the same in return."
Res coughs as the dust from the collapse of the funhouse rushes over him. "We better not stay here any longer. As Eliva suggests, let's go and see what is happening above ground and decide how to let people know the fate of their loved ones." Res casts light on his great sword and begins walking up toward the exit of the tunnel.
As you hear and feel the structure behind you crumbling into the earth, you also hear a din arise from those around the carnival grounds. You begin to hear shouting, screaming, and wailing as those outside witness the destruction of the building, burying with it the remains of the carnival leadership, including the beloved Zaria and Zorya. You realize that whatever plans you have to escape must take into account the chaos that is spreading among those outside.
Yuri's eyes widen. "I think... I think I can speak..." He is clearly shaken, and not entirely coherent, but may be able to handle it if the exchange is brief.
Urdrin prods the cowering carnival manager. "What about him?" he asks dubiously. "A stablehand is one thing, but what of the manager of the carnival, sneaking about with a bunch of strangers after his funhouse has fallen down around him?"
"Sergei may or may not be helpful. He was under that fey's influence for longer than any of us. We've got the evidence in the letter, but I'm afraid if we show it to the carnival folk they'll lynch him - and it wasn't his fault exactly."
Angalia tries to think.
"But if any of them have friends or family who got the plague, that might help our cause. If they're cured."
"Hmpfh," snorts Res. "He may not have been the source of the plaque, but he seemed a willing enough co-conspirator. Let the local authorities deal with him. As far as showing the letter, I think we should keep that to ourselves. If there is a conspiracy afoot, we don't want to tip our hand that we know anything yet. I think the presence of the evil fey, Yuri's story, and the other perpetrator is all we need to explain our actions."
The cellar door opens, revealing the carnival grounds beyond. Many people are running about in a panic as nearby the remains of the funhouse collapse upon themselves, leaving only the mirror-filled farmhouse that had been expanded by Spindle.