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Cerpera looks up at Nyxalia as Nyxalia wraps her arm around her. Her sobbing begins to subside and the hint of a smile forms at the corners of her mouth. She presses in closer to the oread's arm and closes her eyes.
You can continue to discuss among yourselves the event that just happened or your next steps. When you are ready to move on just go back through the doors you entered.
Owen rejoins the others around the pool. Cerpera raises her arms, her voice echos loudly in the chamber.
"You each have agreed to be my champion. Cerpera has given you an object. As long as you keep it within 5 feet of you, you are connected to a source of unimaginable power that will augment the talents you already posses. Each object is solely attuned to its owner. You cannot share the objects with each other nor if someone else picks it up will they receive its power. It is for you and you alone. Heed my warning, this power is a gift from me to aid you in solving these mysteries and ending the plot against my kingdom. Use this power counter to that goal, it will be taken away."
Cerpera begins to hum. The objects in your hands vibrate slightly in response. You feel an energy slipping into your hands, then moving slowly into your arms and finally, spreading through out your entire body. You feel an intense vigor making you feel almost indestructible. You realize that this pool of energy can be called upon in a surge of power to aid in difficult situations. You're senses are keener, allowing you an edge when confronted. One of your talents, suddenly grows in strength. As you look around the room, everything seems different. It is as if there is an energy inside each object and being that you never saw before. You feel like you can control this energy in ways a moment before you thought impossible. Each of you manifests your new power in a different way as it attunes itself uniquely to your core.
"Go now, it will not take long for you to fully understand how to use your new powers."
Cerpera lowers her arms, and her eyes return to normal. She collapses into a heap still on top of the water and begins to sob softly.
Congratulations, you have ascended to Mythic. You gain 2 mythic tiers. You can use these powers immediately.
Cerpera gazes back at Owen with the same unseeing expression as before, yet the set of face hints that she is listening. Unlike the others, Cerpera speaks to Owen first and then reaches into the pool to extract an object.
""Join me, Owen," Cerpera whispers. "You speak of your concern for death, but we both know that you are masking your greater fear. Entering a trap that you cannot escape even with your superior intelligence. I assure you this is no trap. What awaits you I cannot say. However, I am arming you with the tools you require to succeed. These tools include the companions I have selected to join you. Each brings skills that makes the sum of the parts greater than the individual pieces. Take care, your actions in the library with your prisoner have put doubts in their mind about you. Your enemy may use these doubts as the seeds to your destruction." Cerpera reaches down into the pool and pulls out a scroll case embossed ornately with her holy symbol "You thirst for knowledge. The journey on which you embark will show you things you could never imagine. You will want to record what you see. Take this scroll case. It holds a far greater number of scrolls than you would expect, but more importantly, as long as it is near, it will attune you to a greater power. Now, go and rejoin the others, I will now speak to you all."
She gives you a Case of Infinite Scrolls. Source: #30 Not So Mundane Items, page 2
Cerpera kneels again and withdraws an object from the water. She hands it to Ilias and whispers into his ear.
"Poor Ilias, losing your family and finding yourself abandoned at such a young age is a burden few have survived. Yet, not only have you survived, you have taken the first steps toward rejoining society. Despite your loss, you are still willing to risk everything to help Golarion in its time of need. That is why I chose you to join my champions. Take this Summoner's Hat. As long as you keep it near, it will help the creatures that you summon with extra protection, and it will attune you to a greater power. Please return to your place but say nothing until the final potential champion, Owen has made his choice."
This finely made cloth hat is made from fine linen. It is embroidered with delicate patterns of various creatures using different colors of thread and glass beads.
Twice per day you can summon a creature that emerges from your hat. Creatures summoned from the hat are granted a +1 enhancement bonus to AC and saving throws for 5 rounds after they have been summoned. The source of this item is The Genius Guide to Loot 4 less Volume 10 Fezzes are Cool!. I'll PM you with the full details later.
Ulath enters the pool and wades to Cerpera. She repeats the now expected process reaching in and removing a small item from the pool. She leans over to Ulath.
"Ulath, thank you for accepting my request. Although this may seem happenstance, you have been on this path for a long time. You are the steadfast rock that this party may need. Further, all that you hold dear is at risk if events are allowed to come to fruition. As a master craftsman, you will appreciate this Crafter's Hammer. As long as this hammer is near you, it will increase your craftsman skills and more importantly, attune to a greater power. Please return to your place but say nothing until the others have made their choice."
The Crafter's Hammer will grant a +4 competence bonus to any relevant craft checks for tasks that would otherwise require an ordinary hammer. Source: #30 Not So Mundane Items by this PBP's very own Owen aka Dave Mallon. I'll send you a PM with the full details of the magic item.
Cerpera nods to Nyxalia as she kneels. As before, Cerpera reaches down into the pool and emerges with an object. She leans close to Nyxalia's ear.
"Nyxalia, do not take your abandonment as a babe as a statement of your worthiness. I see the nimbleness and wisdom that you possess. The Elemental Brothers have raised you well. That is why I chose you for this task. You are most worthy of taking on my quest. As long as you keep it near, this wayfinder will guide you on your path and attune to a greater power. Please return to your place but say nothing until the others have made their choice."
The wayfinder has Pharasma's holy symbol etched onto its back. It has a slot free for Nyxalia's cracked Dusty Rose Ioun stone. Placing the ioun stone into the wayfinder causes it to resonate. The wayfinder increases your ability to perform or resist combat maneuvers.
There is a 100% chance of the wayfinder amplifying the cracked stone's magical powers. The wayfinder with the cracked Dusty Rose Ioun stone installed grants a +2 insight bonus on CMB and to CMD.
As with Zarine, Cerpera reaches into the pool of water and pulls an object out of the water and hands it to Savendir. She whispers into his ear so the others cannot hear.
"Dear Savendir, you have had to endure so much in such a short time. You most of all should share my hatred of undead. Take these sandals. They will hide you from the undead. As long as you keep them near, you will be attuned to a greater power. Please return to your place but say nothing until the others have made their choice."
The sandals are made of delicate bones bleached white from age and held together by worn ligaments. Tiny finger bones make up the soles of the sandals and small animal heads form clasps around the ankle.
I will PM you a more thorough description of the sandals. The source is "The Genius Guide to Loot Vol 4 fantastic footwear"
Cerpera kneels down on top of the water and reaches into the pool and retrieves an object and says something to Zarine in a whisper that the others cannot hear.
"Be wary child. When gods conspire, no one can be trusted. I do not know if your god, Vritra is involved or not. However, I do trust you. Take this pouch to hold items you wish not to be found. As you long as you keep it within reach, you will be attuned to a greater power. Please, return to your place but say nothing until the others have made their choice."
The small pouch, no larger than a fist, is made from snake skin and is adorned with Pharasma's holy symbol. It is a Pathfinder Pouch.
It isn't long before one of the doors opens again. Hortiln emerges and motions you to enter. He says in a low voice, "I will leave you here. Cerpera awaits you in the next room."
The double doors open into a large 30 foot by 30 foot room. Finely polished gray stone floor and walls sparkle as the torch light dances on the mirrored surface. Across the room the source of the sound can be seen. It is a semi circular pool, ten feet in diameter with low walls. Water cascades down the far wall over a relief carving of Pharasma's holy symbol and falls into the pool below. Cerpera stands on top of the water in the center of the pool and looks out at you with unseeing eyes as if in a trance.
Once Hortiln closes the door behind you, Cerpera begins to speak in a flat, deep voice that is not her own.
Savendir should recognize this voice as the same one that spoke at the fountain in Sirathu when Cerpera was about to reveal Lady Zinnastina's treachery.
"Please, come closer." Cerpera pauses until all of you approach the fountain and then continues, "Thank you for your efforts to keep Cerpera, my organ, from harm. You have proven yourselves both brave and resourceful. As you may have surmised, the disappearances are only the tip of an even greater threat. The being behind these kidnappings and thefts is growing into a power that exceeds the great thassilonian runelords. Yet, even this powerful being is but a pawn in a larger game. A game that may end with the destruction of Axis. The initiator of this game has chosen its champion. It is now time for me to choose mine. While I will not involve myself directly in this game, I will tap into a power within each of you that you could not scarce believe existed. However, I will not be coy. The task before you is great and its outcome is unknown. The price may be your very soul ripped into non-existence. Thus, I will not force you to take on this task. If you deem yourself unable to assist, you may leave now. I will not judge you adversely when your soul stands before me in the boneyard. Should you accept your new role as my champions, come forward to Cerpera that I may confer my blessing upon each of you."
The room grows silent, but for the water dropping into the pool.
If you accept Pharasma's request, enter the pool and move to Cerpera. Otherwise, you may leave through the double door.
At Savendir's mention of Cerpera, the priest's hard face relaxes. "Yes, you may allay your fears. Cerpera has indeed arrived safely. My name is Hortiln Serpenthelm, the night cryptmaster. Pharasma's voice told us of your impending arrival. Before we proceed let me check that everyone is present." He pulls out a list, from the desk. "I have Savendir, Zarine, Nyxalia, Ilias, Owen," He pauses for a moment, "and Ulath." He looks at each individual and checks off the list. "I see we are complete. Please, follow this way."
Hortiln leads the group through luxuriously appointed catacombs packed with bodies. They descend several sets of stairs before finally stopping in front of a pair of gothic doors. "Please, wait here for a moment. I will see if she is ready to receive you." Hortiln opens one of the doors, slips in quickly and then closes the door behind him. The outer chamber is bathed in a soft light from the sconces on the floor. Large carvings of Pharasma's holy symbols cover each wall and the doors.
Zarine leads the group to the Bottoms section of Kaer Maga. First they come to the Godsmouth Cathedral. This huge, gothic edifice is the center of Pharasmin faith in Kaer Maga and is dedicated to all three aspects of the Lady of Graves, the midwife, the reaper of the dead, and the mad prophet. The cathedral sits at the edge of the cliff overlooking the Varisian plains below.
In the dim light of the waxing crescent moon, a narrow path can be seen going around the exterior of the cathedral. A few candles twinkle in the windows overlooking the street. The church appears to be closed for the evening.
Zarine follows the path behind the church. It leads directly to the edge of the cliff a few hundred feet above the valley below. The path then makes a steep descent along a narrow, twisted cliffside route and ends up at the mouth of the Unnamed King. Stepping into the mouth puts the party into the Godsmouth Ossuary itself.
The interior of the Ossuary is lit by a series of ever burning torches. A few robed and hooded Pharasmin priests can be seen silently tending to the deceased. Near the entrance, a priest stands at a small writing table. He puts his quill down and looks up as you enter.
"This is highly irregular. Who are you to come at this hour unattended and disturb the deceased in this sanctuary?" he asks in an autocratic voice.
The Godsmouth Ossuary is the most prestigious burial place for the city of Kaer Maga, Varisia, located under the city in ancient catacombs dating back to the Thassilonian period and entered through the mouth of the Unnamed King carved into the cliff faces below the city. It is strictly overseen by the church of Pharasma based in the Godsmouth Cathedral in the Bottoms district of the city.
In addition to the DC 10 knowledge, the head of the Pharasma church in Kaer Maga is Delana Karaheis.
In addition to the DC 10 and DC 15 checks, very little is known about the Godsmouth Ossuary because even the Duskwardens are kept out. It is rumoured that the Ossuary goes far beyond the tombs where the wealthy spend eternal life. Like the rest of the city, they Godsmouth Ossuary's original purpose has been lost over the passage of eons.
Owen recalls that there are four aspects of Norgorber
How these different aspects are related to Iyshtear is not within Owen's knowledge.
Of the four books I mentioned earlier, is there one you wish to study in your last hour at the library?
After completing your study at the library, you return to Nyxalia'a monastery. Ulath accompanies you, curious about what is going on and wishing to help.
When you arrive, one of the brothers, anxiously greets you at the door looking troubled. "I'm so glad you have returned. The young ward you left with us has left. She said the Lady of Graves has called her to the Godsmouth Ossuary. She requests your presence as well. You are to see her there as soon as possible."
The leather wrapping of the Book of Harms is of an indeterminate type, and gives off a faint and unpleasant scent, as of charred meat. The writing inside is in a jagged hand, and many notes on the ash-smudge pages indicate its previous owner sought ever more damaging magic. A glittering rune in the cover's center is shaped vaguely like a lightning bolt.
3rd - fireball, lightning bolt
2nd - acid arrow, darkness, ghoul touch, gust of wind
1st - burning hands, color spray, elemental touch, hydraulic push, hypnotism, magic missile, ray of enfeeblement, shocking grasp
Nyxalia Blackstone wrote:
While Owen browses the books on the first floor, Nyxalia will head to the third and see what she can find.
Nyxalia finds the following titles as she peruses the shelves.
Book of Harms (Evoker) - It contains several 1st through 3rd level spells.
Grimoire of Glittering Eyes (Illusionist) - This book contains 1st through 4th level spells.
Artic Call Vol. I of II (Evoker) - This book is the first of two volumes and it contains 1st through 3rd level spells. Volume II is available upon special request.
Mysteries of Shadow Vol 1 of 3 (Illusionist) - This book is the first of 3 volumes and contains spell levels 1 through 3.
Let me know if you want a particular book. As with Owen, the other volumes are not available so close to closing time.
Owen the Younger wrote:
Unfortunately no. They generally do not make the special volumes available so close to closing time.
Owen finds that most of the books on the first floor that are easily accessible are lower level spell books focused on Abjuration and Conjuration.
Manual of Binding (Conjurer) Volume 1 of 3 - Volume 1 contains also contains several first through 3rd level spells. (Volumes 2 and 3 are also available upon special request.)
Guardian Grimoire (Abjuration) Volume 1 of 3 - Volume 1 contains 1st and 2nd level spells. (Other volumes available on special request.)
Defensive Primer (Abjuration) - This surprisingly ornate and heavy volume is more than three-quarters empty. Tightly written notes on the precepts of arcane defense and the vulnerabilities of supernatural entities fill the first 2 pages. It has a list of 1st level spells.
If there is one particular volume you want to study for the remaining hour, let me know and I will list the spells in that book.
Svendir, no check is needed. You can ask a librarian for assistance.
You return to the rare book floor. There you find a librarian eager to assist. He listens to you describe your intention to find out more about Ihystear. He ponders for a moment, then tells you he will retrieve some books on the subject that may help.
He brings back several books dealing with cultic lore of Heaven and Hell. Unfortunately most of the references to Ihystear is tangential. After about two hours of study, all that you learn is that Ihystear is believed to be the only remaining piece from the spear that Asmodeus used to slay his brother Ihys. The texts yield no clues as to why someone would want to obtain Ihystear.
Is there any other information you wish to learn at the library? The library will be closing in about an hour.
Owen the Younger wrote:
Owen moves to scan the bookshelves for anything interesting.
Recalling the sign on the first floor...
Information Sign wrote:
You are currently on the fifth floor. The subjects covered on this floor are History, Geography, and Nature. As Owen scans the titles he sees books such as
Dwarven Massacre: The Quest for the Sky from an Orc's perspective
Is there a specific subject you or Nyxalia are looking for?
Tanos answers Savendir's question. "We will hold the prisoners here until your return with the book. This will allow us some time to modify their memories. We cannot allow word to get out that our defenses against theft can be breached. It will put our entire collection at risk. Thank you again for your assistance. I wish you good luck and speed in accomplishing your task."
With that he claps his hands and 3 other librarians emerge. Each takes a prisoner and leads them away.
"You are welcome to peruse our collection if it will assist you in your mission. If there is nothing else, I bid you adieu."
With that, Tanos turns and follows the librarians.
What do you want to do next? It is now mid - afternoon.
Owen the Younger wrote:
That would be a knowledge local, but I'll use the same roll.
The Brothers of the Seal have for centuries protected an enormous circular seal hidden beneath the Oriat district in Kaer Maga. However, given the long passage of time, memories of their initial purpose have faded. The current Brothers of the Seal have divided into rival factions. The first is led by Father Zho, the leader of the traditionalist also known as the faithful. Father Zho advocates that their original mission still stands, protect the seal until its purpose is revealed. The other faction is led by Aldair Eamon. He advocates exploring behind the seal further.
A silent civil war is being raged currently. Its violence occasionally spills out onto the streets of Kaer Maga. As long as you remain neutral, you should not have much trouble with the Brothers.
The prisoner answers, "I've never been to Maxkevley's base, but I have heard the others talk about it. They said it is somewhere below Kaer Maga in the Under City. I don't know where exactly but I do know that one time I had to meet them near the tunnel leading to the Brothers of the Seal's temple."
Nyxalia punches the belligerent prisoner. A red welt grows on the side of the man's jaw. He glares back at Nyxalia but says nothing.
The term Ihystear is unknown to Owen.
Tanos says, "We can take that young prisoner next door. These two aren't going anywhere."
He unbinds the younger prisoner from the chair, while keeping the prisoner's hands bound. He leads the prisoner into a study room next door. He than rebinds the prisoner.
Owen's arcane knowledge tells him that a dimension door spell has range of at least 400 feet and maybe longer.
Separated from his companions, the young prisoner relaxes slightly and says, "I'll try to help, but I am worried about my sister. They told me if I didn't cooperate that they would make her pay. Goran says that Maxkevley has magical powers and he can watch us somehow no matter where we are. All he needed was some hair from our heads and then we couldn't resist."
The two older captives look back with contempt. The younger one glances at the other two and then back to Zarine. He pleads, "Please Ma'am, help me and I can help you. Maxkevlay teleported along with his chief henchman as soon as they grabbed the book. They, they just abandoned us. He's..."
"BOY!" roars the other captive again. "I warned you. You're sweet sister is going pay for your treachery." The man struggles against his bindings. "You think he won't know? He may be watching us right now."
The tension in the room is disturbed momentarily when Egar enters the room.
"We have determined which book has been stolen," he explains. "The missing tome is a very old book that describes the origin, uses and possible locations of an artifact called the Ihyster. I cannot speculate to what purpose this book may serve but we must have it returned. As there seems to be a connection between your investigation and this book, I ask that you retrieve this book as soon as possible. I will provide you access to our rare book collection if it will assist you in your investigation. Time is often of the essence in these matters, I urge you to complete your interrogation quickly and begin your search."
What do you want to do now?
At first, the surviving prisoners sit silently eyeing their captors. A pool of blood begins to growth beneath the corpse that Owen had placed on the floor.
Finally, the youngest suspect stammers, "We we we were hired by Maxkevlay Soncatim to be lookouts. We..." "Quiet BOY!" snarls a man appearing to be in his late twenties. "It's not these folks you should be worryin about. You have a younger sister don't ya?" the man continues threateningly.
Zarine Panchal wrote:
You're right, there is no explicit rule that I can find either, however the consensus seems to favor craft(alchemy) or knowledge(nature) if it's an animal/plant based natural poison. Since Zarine is a Viskanyas she can have a +2 bonus to identify poisons. The DC needed to identify the poison will equal the poison's DC. Another alternative is to jab a dart into someone else and see what happens. O.o
A book is most certainly available somewhere in the library to assist in identifying the poison as well. It will take 1d60 minutes to retrieve the book and add +10 to the check.
Zarine sees that the substance on the end of the dart, and the substance in the pouch are the same.
Owen knows that Maxkevlay Soncatim is the head of thieves guild that specializes in procuring very difficult to obtain items for wealthy benefactors. There are rumors that his headquarters are somewhere beneath Kaer Maga in the Undercity.
Owen's captive slides to the ground as his life swiftly drains away.
Zarine finds the remaining 2 living captives on this floor are carrying the following:
Owen finds that P1 has the same as P2 except he only has 3 darts. 1 GP, 7 SP, 6 CP Tanos looks sternly at Owen. "You've made quite the mess over there. I trust that no blood has stained our books. Please assist with removing the body. We need to minimize the disturbance to our patrons."
Turning to the others he says, "We have shed enough blood on our rare book floor. Please lead collect your prisoners alive and follow me."
Other wizards move in to begin putting the floor back in order. They cast spells to remove the blood.
Tanos leads down to the next floor and into one of the private study rooms. Bound to a chair you find the other accomplice B2 sitting with a scowl on his face. 3 other chairs are empty and surround a wooden table.
Egar answers, "Yes, two of our brothers have been injured, Peris and Delk. I appreciate your offer to help but we will be able to treat them ourselves."
He considers Savendir and Zarine's story for a moment and then his faces softens slightly. "It is fortunate that you were here, then. Who knows what other items may been taken if their plan had not been thwarted. I will find out what has been stolen. In the mean time, we can detain your prisoners in a private study room on the floor below." He motions to one of the librarians standing near by. "Tanos will lead the way and remain for the questioning. I will join you shortly."
Egar turns and heads to the Rare Book Room. Tanos steps up. "Please collect your prisoners and follow me. The remaining thief is being brought to the study room now."
You may perform a cursory search of your prisoners as you gather them up. If there is anything else you want to investigate before going to the study room, feel free. Otherwise, we will pick things up in the next room.
Ulath chisel damage: 1d4 + 2 ⇒ (3) + 2 = 5
Ulath is able to catch the pickpocket with his chisel before the rogue has a chance to escape. The pickpocket falls down unconscious.
Struggling with an arrow in him, the assailant near Nyxalia is able to avoid her first blow but catches the second fist square in the chin and drops unconscious.
The wizard N1 says, "They caught the thief on the stairwell and he his now in custody."
The pickpocket held by Owen stammers, "Don't hurt me! I don't know much but I'll tell you all I know. I was hired to keep a look out near the stairs as Soncatim stole some book. We weren't suppose to attack unless somebody on the floor tried to interfere. After that, we were suppose to blend into the chaos and slip out the front. That's all I know. Please just let me go now."
Out of rounds
Chaos does ensue after the heist. Librarians rush to the aid of their fallen comrades. One of the Wizards N1 steps forward. "My name is Egar Vinstan, I am a librarian here. Thank you for capturing some of the thieves. I must say, I am impressed by your quick action. Almost like you were anticipating this event. Who are you?" The last question is tinged with a sound of suspicion.
Savendir, yes B2 is trying to escape down the stairs.
1d20 + 3 ⇒ (13) + 3 = 16, non lethal damage: 1d6 ⇒ 3
The pickpocket swings his sap at Ulath and raps him hard on the head while trying unsuccessfully to avoid his grasp. "You'll soon learn to loathe the day you chose to interfere with our plans!" snarls the petty pickpocket.
P2 Escape Artist Check: 1d20 + 7 ⇒ (16) + 7 = 23
The pickpocket then contorts his body and manages to squirm out of the dwarf's hold. He quickly moves away from the dwarf taunting him along the way. "Old fool! I've bested far more able captors then you. But don't worry, your interfering days will be over soon."
If Ulath still has his lathe in his hand, he can take an AoO. P2 tries to escape down one of the aisles.
The other pickpocket P1 continues to plead with Owen. "Please call that wolf off of me. I'll tell you anything you want to know. Just protect me from that vicious animal."
The startled wizard/librarians gain their composure and begin to converge. The wizard N1 nearest to Savendir hears his call. "I've messaged the guards downstairs to lock down the library. He won't get far."
Moving things along. Ilias, you can post an additional action if you wish in addition to the continued attack of the celestial wolf.
Ilias's wolf continues to menace the man held by Owen. bite: 1d20 + 2 ⇒ (3) + 2 = 5
The man trying to escape moves past Zarine and attempts to open the door to continue his escape. Zarine can take an AoA. The man near Nyxalia attacks again. attack: 1d20 + 3 ⇒ (20) + 3 = 23, damage: 1d4 + 1 ⇒ (1) + 1 = 2, possible crit: 1d20 + 3 ⇒ (18) + 3 = 21, 1d4 + 1 ⇒ (1) + 1 = 2
His blade plunges deep into Nyxalia and does additional damage, then the man takes another 5 foot step back.