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The chiming of the bell brings the Hounds great head around to look at the door. After several seconds nothing happens until a loud *CLACK* is heard and the shift of what must have been barring the door. Without a sound the iron door swings open, seeming to be inviting you all in.
Just beyond the doorway you can see that a huge portrait hangs above an enormous, lit fireplace in this large entry chamber. A set of steep stairs rises to the right of the room.
The Hound watches the open door now...
With Sour Heck hanging from its neck, the Hound no longer seems concerned with any of the group. Merely watching ahead as Eloise moves by, its scales twitching as its body betrays it every now and again. But it doesn't perform any other actions unless interacted with.
The Iron Door you all are standing in front of appears to be looked, as it doesn't budge when pressed against. Nor does anyone come if you knock...
Adelram: 1d20 + 6 ⇒ (1) + 6 = 7
Eloise: 1d20 + 2 ⇒ (14) + 2 = 16
Iesha: 1d20 + 8 ⇒ (15) + 8 = 23
Sour Heck: 1d20 + 9 - 6 ⇒ (17) + 9 - 6 = 20
Sunset: 1d20 + 7 ⇒ (2) + 7 = 9
Iesha, Sour Heck and Eloise:
While examining the area and waiting for something to happen with the door you noticed what appears to be a hidden bell pull hanging by the eastern side of the door.
Doesn't bother me who posts first but you all three spotted it. Even though Sour Heck is hanging from a motionless Hound Golem. XD
The lizard lunches, angered at being distracted from its half devoured snack as it looks at Jen hungrily standing inthe doorway...
The large lizards Jaws snap at Jen's legs but finding nothing as Jen nimbly dodges the lizards sharp teeth...
Party Is up Starting with Jen since she is blocking the door... >;3
Sour Heck's approach, brings the Hounds full attention to him. As he approaches it sits. Its scale turning grey as it watches just him alone. When he gets close enough to touch him the Hound nuzzles the front of his tabard before raising its head up.
Sour Heck Only:
The symbol on the Tabard glows, but only you appear to notice it. As the Hound withdraws its head and raises it once more you feel something familiar about it. Soter... echoed in your mind then. The tag on its ear had an Archaic looking 'S' engraved on it as well. As quickly as this happens it all snaps back to reality, like you never missed a step and were now clinging to the Hounds thick neck. Since it stood as tall as a warhorse...
Looking At your Tabard you see the archaic 'S' was now added to it though you had no idea what it meant at that moment.
The Hound doesn't react now that Sour Heck was near, staring straight ahead the way you all came and growling only if the Goblins peaked out of their cage to look at the Hound. Now that you were up close you could see it was injured, lightly, but some of its scales were scarred from recent battles.
The arched bridge everyone crosses ends at a moderately sized cobbled terrace with a curious looking iron door depicting a scowling sun being devoured by ravenous clouds. To the left, two hundred feet below, a huge waterfall plummets into the depths. The Iron Door before you though is locked...
The Hounds head turns towards Eloise. Focusing on the flipping coin but not reacting in the same way as if she had been brandishing a weapon. It doesn't react much more then that as it looks back towards Adekram, then to Sour Heck and then to Eloise before repeating the process.
It's a scales were still partially crimson and it appeared ready to react like before.
Jen moves and opens the door nearest the group as the gas continues to linger to the north of them. Upon opneing the door she see a rack of hooks hangs from the ceiling, cured slabs of meat dangling from them and filling the room with a smoky aroma. A group of barrels appears to hold other preserved foodstuffs.
Jen - Percept: 1d20 + 4 ⇒ (19) + 4 = 23
Jen also noticed the slowly rising form of what appeared to be a rather large lizard, which immediately hissed upon smelling her and lunged towards the now open door!
Ini Monitor Lizard: 1d20 + 3 ⇒ (15) + 3 = 18
Jen Ini check, everyone else is surprised atm unless Jen Wins the Ini roll!
"That's fine." Aradacemorn responds taking his position as the group forms up into a new marching order. Letting the small but deadly Aradacemorn lead as they leave the old quarters of the fallen Ironbeard.
You round the bend, making quick and quiet steps through the abandoned hallways until you reach where the hallways form a sideways 'T'. Several bedroom doorstand closed to your right, totalling three and roughly ten feet apart. On the left comes the sound of hissing and grunts as several ghouls come lunging our of the darkness towards the group. Aradacemorn, having been in the lead stands in the center of the hallway facing the oncoming ghouls with a firey resolve.
The five dwarven ghouls don't seem to notice anything amiss with the small halfling and continue to rush headlong at the group, snapping their jaws. Hungry to savor the flesh of the living!
Initiative! Whoever gets highest wins and their group goes first.
The Hound remains still, twitching every now and again as the silence between the groups stretches on. It scales were a neutral grey tone and the hounds eyes remained focused on Sour Heck alone.
1d20 ⇒ 15
The Goblins nervously gathered to the edge of the cage, leaning their odd shaped heads out and watching for almost a minute before Gutterbug sighed with boredom. The Hound leans forward, its rear legs rising as Gutterbug speaks. "Dis borin' dem trollhead fought dat'un and ran. Dis'un no fight ya, so dis boring. We g...? " The hounds thundering bark makes the goblins duck back into their cage.
The Hounds scales are crimson once more as it growls low each of its scales vibrating as it does so. It gives a few low growling barks before tilting its head and seeing the threat was gone. It's scales slowly change to grey and as they do it sits back down, focusing on Sour Heck again...
1d20 ⇒ 14
The Hound looks at Eloise directly, looks her up and down before looking back at Sour Heck once more. Tilting its head at him with its ears perked up. The large double doors behind the Hound appear solid and shut, apparently the trolls never tried coming any farther...
Hounds Reaction in a short summary:
If you are armed it reacts by turning Crimson momentarily as you approach, Sour Heck is the only one who appears to be immune to this reactio. It continues to look to Sour Heck with a completely neutral response and continues to wait there. Sitting at the far side of the bridge with its ears perked up. It's scales twitch every now and again as though it isn't in complete control before settling down. But the Hound doesn't move an inch from where it sits. Unless provoked...
No problems Sunset, I am in the same boat -.-; I am about to purchase internet just to have some normalcy in posting times...
The Hounds head remains tilted a moment longer before it starts to look at each person that speaks, first at Sunset then her crossbow. Its scales rippling crimson before it looks at Sour Heck and turns grey again. Then to Adelram, tilting its head the other way before it sits down and just watches.
Sourheck K-Arcane Check:
You are not familiar with this particular symbol, recognizing some of the runes as something used in Alchemy. Some of the symbols represent Transmutation symbolism but a third of the symbol you don't recognize leaving you puzzled as to its purpose.
The hound growls and barks as Sour Heck comes across the barrier but it stops barking just before Sour Heck braces his spear. Instead tilting its head as if it were confused as its scales return to a neutral grey once more. It watches Sour Heck intently.
When you do proceed please give me a marching order/details on who is where in the case of someone being in the tower and such. Thanks. :)
Once Tabard is Repaired - Sour Heck only:
Once you pull on the Tabard you feel a flush of energy run through you and a symbol appears on the front of the Tabard. A strange symbol at that...
However no one else seems to notice it but you...
Waiting on how you all want to proceed, still here. Thank you Sour Heck, I am assuming that Iesha is using Make Whole. But I will wait and see how this all falls.
The next sighting of the Hound from the Tower:
If back in the tower
Back in sight of the hound it appears to have laid down again, but at the sighting of the group once more it rises back onto its feet. Sitting like before, changing from grey to red again as it watched silently, twitching every now and again when its body betrayed it.
The next sighting of the Hound from the Barricade:
Pulling down the barricade and opening the inner gate was a cumbersome but simple task. Once the gate was open the Hound, which had laid back down, rises onto its feet. If someone is in the tower at the moment then the Hound is already back to sitting down. Seeing the group are on its level it rises too all four feet. Its ears lay down as its scales bristle a new shade of crimson red but it made no move to engage.
If anyone moves past the inner gate:
The Hound barks, its first noise since it was spotted and it's bark was like thunder. The air crackles with each bark, even with the water passing beneath it's bark roared louder. Though it still made no move to attack, staying on the far side of the bridge instead.
Adelram and Sunset in the tower
The Hound continues to watch each of you on the tower equally, it's scales staying red the entire time it did so. ..
In the company of goblins below.
Gutterbug looked a bit lost now, having little else to add to the persistent questioning of Eloise. The little creature looked a mix of angry and ready to yield subserviently once more if she continued...
The barricade remained and the items recovered would aid the group in many different ways.
Remember to track the treasure items you've just gained. Thanks! Just waiting to see what your plan is! :D
@Adelram Realizing it isn't any normal animal you've ever seen before you delve into your knowledge of creatures and beings of arcane nature.
Though by the way it watched you, so still, so unnaturally still... That was when you notice something rather odd...
There was no movement of its chest or its sides to indicate it was taking any breaths. Though it didn't appear to be any undead you'd ever encountered nor heard of before.
Adleram's Perception: 1d20 + 6 ⇒ (20) + 6 = 26
Despite the distance Adelram's astute observations bear fruit, you notice that despite how perfect this creature looked. That there were imperfections, its scales didn't seem to react the way it was wanting all the time. It finally seemed to be having issues holding still after several minutes, having an odd twitch before settling back into its previous statue like stance.It was a construct, one made from different creatures and quite splendidly at that. More precisely a Flesh Golem. The last thing Adelram notices is there was some sort of metal tag attached to its right ear, though what was engraved on it was hard to see from this distance.
What does Adelram know:
This 'Hound' is a type of flesh golem that is particularly well made. It is larger then normal flesh golem hounds by several hands, from where you stand it is easily the size of a decent heavy horse. Flesh golems are known for being resistant to most all attacks and have the following Construct Traits. The one major flaw of constructs is that they are mindless, they follow orders which can be good and bad depending on what they are tasked with. Granted such tasks are simple in nature as these constructs lack the intelligence for any complex tasks.
As soon as Sour Heck and Sunset emerge again the hounds grey scaled body turns red, starting from its head and working down to its tail as its scales flare defensively. It's obvious now that it is watching you more then ever, as now it has risen to its feet and is poised to react...
2d100 ⇒ (77, 53) = 130
Gutterbug shrugs. "Trollheads be trollheads 'nd Humes da stem to us'n's. Dem's dat drop dis went on dat way." He gestures to the barricaded gate again with a clearly confused or vexed look on his tiny face...
The tattered magical tabard is grey with blue trim, it is in desperate need of some repair and once unraveled from the barricade bears the tattered symbol of Lord Caromarc's coat of arms.
Formation as you proceed? Any tactics you are employing and such will help to set the next post correctly as I doubt you are moving haphazardously. Also Aeria and Aradacemorn are up with being placed where needed, though varying levels of comfort are to be remembered. Aeria won't easily accept a 'Take the lead and scout role' where Aradacemorn might because he is of the mindset of being far more durable and perhaps arrogant of being a Dragon in halfling skin and all. Lvl 2 map should be viewable to all now, if not let me know. I will double check settings right now.
The longer you remained in the battlement the more the odd looking and rather large hound took notice. It rose smoothly to its feet and then you noticed the odd extra claw that was on each foot, making it almost appear like a hook of sorts. However the oddest thing of all was that this once grew hound appear to be a bright red and its scales were now truly flared out as if it were angered. Though never once does it bark or make an aggressive move other then sitting and watching you from afar.
At Eloise prolonged silence Gutterbug adds with a shrug. "Humes look da stem to us'n's. Jus' Ugy." The other goblins nodding in agreement like whatever Gutterbug had said was the right thing.
The stinking mist continues to persist, though it was gradually getting smaller at a very slow rate. Retreating up through the guarded well.
2d20 ⇒ (12, 11) = 23
Aside from the stinking mist nothing else moved or other distractions could be scene or heard, though a thorough investigation hadn't been performed yet in all the wareas either.
Until Wallace had spoke Aradacemorn had been wwatching the rear, being summoned he sidles up to Rhavenna and looks at the stone door, a rather plain look of annoyance on his halfling face. "Let me do it... A hammer will be far too loud." The polymorphed dragon gives Wallace a telling look before placing his fist experimentally against the door's center, or at least as close as he could get to it with his reduced height.
He brings his fist back and slams it against the stone, leaving a bloody mark upon it but causing the door to visibly shift inward on what remained of its hinges. Accompanying the sound was that of rather dulled thud of something falling on the other side of the door.
Strength: 1d20 + 8 ⇒ (20) + 8 = 28
Aradacemorn shakes his hand, despite the overwhelming strength he had it was obvious such a blow probably smarted something fierce...
Despite the quick blow the sound still echoed some and it wasn't obvious just how far or who might have heard.
Stepping away the halfing takes his position back at the rear and nods to Rhavenna with an apologetic look on his face just as he scampered off.
Newly opened room:
The door opens and reveals what could only be a moderately sized closet, with several small shelves lining the walls with food, spirits and other assorted goods as well as there being a hole in the floor where the sound of running water echoes from somewhere far, far below. Near this hole is the shriveled remains of dwarf. Wallace recognizes him as Ironbeard and, true to form, he lies with his ledger firmly in his dead hands. However the walls with the shelving show that the items on them were untouched. Being as frugal as ever Ironbeard had seen that prolonging the inevitable was useless and chose to go out on his terms.
[spoiler=26 days of iron rations, 26 bottles of dwarven spirits and the tattered clothes ironbeard wears, along with his family forged Waraxe lay in this room for the taking. The corpse still grips the ledger of course.
"Eh? Na, na all dem humes fall dun, sum dem go der." The tiny goblin points to the barroicade from before. "Dey da ones dat drop dis, finder keepers humes Reapers!" He sticks tongue out like a spoiled child before taking another stick to the back of the head. "Meat dun talk. Dats what dem trollsheads say. 'And dun's leaf ether.' So dis 'ere meats be'n."
[swpoiler=Eloise Detect Magic]
As does the tattered tabard in the barricade (Tabard of Resistance +1)...
Climbing the stairs to the northern battlements you see that beyond the inner gate on the otherside of the troll barricade lies a long bridge to another stone building in the water. Laying down at the farthest end of the bridge is what looks like a hound. A rather large hound...
Perception: 1d20 ⇒ 20
As soon as she spotted it the hounds odd skin started to shudder and flare outward like a lizards scales just before one of its eyes opened to peer at her in return...
@Eloise How long were you holding on to your detect magic? Was it for each of those perception checks as well? Or just the items you had found on the trolls? Thanks!
BTW the ball is in everyone's court. If there is any info you want/need or for me to delve deeper into what is here all you have to do is ask. And perhaps roll some dice too haha.
@Sunset The barricade appears to be barricading the gate leading further inside the fortress. As if the Trolls were trying to keep something in. At the words of the goblinoid it is apparently some Hound they were defending against. The area you are standing in leads to the guard towers where one of the trolls ahd been lobbing boulders at you all, rather unsuccessfully. It also should give you a view of what lies beyond this barricaded gate.
Correct, my bad for peicemealing the map, but white squares are indicators for doorways.
Also for evveryround you remain in the stinking mist you will have to roll a fort save vs Nausea.
Jen's Fort: 1d20 + 11 ⇒ (20) + 11 = 31 No effect this round.
Now that you are outside the cloud no more rolls will be needed until you reenter it.
4d20 ⇒ (11, 8, 13, 12) = 44
"Wit da sick!" He gestures to the long wooden rod holding the dubious looking meet. "Poke out dere eyes and makes dem dink da fire!" He strategy though entialed him somehow reaching the six foot height and have the strength to yank the wood off the wall. But whose keeping track of the semantics...
Gutterbug pauses in his excitement when Eloise mentions the amulet, its eyes narrowing cautiously as Gutterbug responds. "Dem humes drop dis, Gutterbug finds and keeps it. Flap-Flap? Dem humes dropped it, after dey dies."
The goblins long ears pop out at the wolf-like grin it recieved from Eloise. Whose murderlike aura brings all of the goblins down to their knees in quaking with terror. The first one to talk is suddenly assailed by its fellows, furious words in goblin are exchanged before the little speaker was thrust forward to the edge of the cage to lookup at Eloise. It visibly gulped this time as it wrung its hands around an item it was holding. An item that had been tucked into its ragged clothes until now. "Da Mazsers eats us dey did. Eats us 'ik dem juice tings on da buches, crunchin are heds and slurping our innards dey did." The goblin spits, a small rain drop of a speck on the floor of their crude cage. "Gutterbug glad dey keed, gud ting, Gutterbug planned to burn dem, burn der bodies..." The goblins eyes go wide with the idea of Fire before he is plugged in the back of the head with a stick from the cowering goblins in back. One of which points and says something in Goblinoid and gets this 'Gutterbug' back on track.
Eloise Perception: 1d20 + 2 ⇒ (11) + 2 = 13
Perception DC 10 - For item Goblin has - Elois only unless others roll.:
It is wringing its grubby little hands on a small amulet depicting a gagged skull...
Though you also notice when it points towards the barricade that their is a tattered bloodstained tunic among the cobbled together pieces of the barricade...
"De mazsers was scareded by dat big dog over der." It gestures to the inner gate where the crude barricade was erected. He pauses for a long time until one of the gobs in back whispers loudly in more of a hiss. "HUMES!"
Gutterbug's wringing of his hands ceases as he nods enthusiatically without words before another stick smack prompts him to translate in rough common once more. "Humes were her' too, long time ago, moving beyond dat gate. Dint see dem after..."
Aeria and Aradacemorn take up rear and let the rest of you go on ahead a few yards as she ascend the stairs and reach what looked to had once been a well appointed bedroom. Clearly whoever had once called this room home was well off. A wine cabinet stands open, several larges bottles lining the rack like a wine cellar. Though the labels on each of the bottles appears to have not weathered the years very well.
The tapestrys in the room are now covered in smudges, faded blood splatter and tattered by what was most likely damage caused by insect activity. An old and mostly empty weapon rack stands in the corner near what appears to be a small mannaquin for the setting and care of armor as well. The mannaquin stands bare though, its stone frame scared by claw marks.
A king sized stone framed and runic engraved bed lies built into the wall, the old skins that once covered it are matted and filthy.
Moving into the next adjoining room you find no resistance as of yet. Though you do find a large desk stands at the center of the office, maps and pages are scattered throughout the office as well. On the desk though is a curious and battered looking tome, an old ink well and a crumbling feather sitting on the desk near the stoppered inl well.
The one in charge of the fortress was a barrel of a dwarf by the name of Engel Dorn the Ironbeard. He came from a prestigious merchant family, though his rank among them was the lowest due to his youth and lack of success in the family business. So as a means to an end the family had him assigned to this backwater outpost, a task he didn't relish and had left him always in a foul mood. Though he was phenomenal at book keeping and tracking records of shipments, events and the goings on within the Fort.
Much to her displeasure she had to report to him everyday and everyday he would complain at their lack of 'Forward Progress'. He was driven but complete soft in the goings on of real work, having always had a life of quills, paper and bartering.
He was one of the survivors among them at the end, though he didn't make it to the mines the day the dead rose against them. Now she knew why...
A door to the west leads out into the main area and an office to the north leads into what may be an extension of this office. Though the door is locked...
From the inside.
The door to the west was similarly barred, though the metal bar that had once secured it was long removed and left to rust in the corner behind where the door comes to rest when open...
1d20 + 2 ⇒ (3) + 2 = 5
1d20 + 2 ⇒ (10) + 2 = 12
1d20 + 2 ⇒ (15) + 2 = 17
1d20 + 2 ⇒ (16) + 2 = 18
Standing at the bottom of the hole leading upwards Jen can clearly hear the heavy breathing and shifting of those above her. Though she could not make anything out in this fog, it was clear that several foes waited above...
"Whositwhazzit?" Responds the fiercest, though shortest, looking goblin in the cage. It stands a brave foot tall and use one hand to slick its greasy looking long ears forward in what it possible percieved as a terrifying gesture. "Ya keed da Mazsers? Dija?" It's broken common was difficult t understand, though the goblins did appear to be little more then prisoners with no food, water or even adequate bedding provided in their cage now that you were up close to them.
Intimidate Eloise: 1d20 - 2 ⇒ (2) - 2 = 0