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Human on Flying Carpet

MrVergee's page

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And here's our good friend Puk.

PUK, CG Male Halfling rogue 4 (swashbuckler)
Init +5; Senses Perception +8
AC 22, touch 17, flat-footed 22, uncanny dodge
hp 34 (3HD)
Fort +5, Ref +10 (evasion), Will +2, +1 morale bonus vs. fear, +2 racial bonus vs. fear
Speed 20 ft. (4 squares)
Melee main hand silver short sword +2 +10 (1d4+2/19-20) and masterwork short sword +9 (1d4/19-20)
Ranged shortbow (small) +9 (1d4/x3)
Ranged sling staff (halfling) (small) +9 (1d6/x3)
Base Atk +3; CMB +2; CMD 18
Atk Options Sneak Attack 2d6
Abilities Str 10, Dex 21, Con 14, Int 8, Wis 10, Cha 10
Feats Dodge, Martial Weapon Proficiency (Halfling Sling Staff), Two-Weapon Fighting, Weapon Finesse, Weapon Focus (short sword)
Skills Acrobatics +14, Acrobatics (Jump) +10, Appraise +4, Bluff +5, Climb +6, Diplomacy +4, Disable Device +11, Disguise +5, Escape Artist +9, Intimidate +4, Knowledge (Dungeoneering) +3, Knowledge (Local) +5, Linguistics +3, Perception +8, Perform (Percussion Instruments) +5, Ride +5, Sense Motive +4, Sleight of Hand +11, Stealth +14, Use Magic Device +4
Possessions small masterwork short sword; small silver short sword +2; studded leather +1 (small); Shortbow (Small); Halfling Sling Staff (Halfling); amulet of natural armor +1

Sneak Attack (Ex) If you can catch an opponent when he is unable to defend himself effectively from your attack, you can strike a vital spot for extra damage. Your attack deals 2d6 points of extra damage.

Fast-Talker You had a knack at getting yourself into trouble as a child, and as a result developed a silver tongue at an early age. You gain a +1 trait bonus on Bluff checks, and Bluff is always a class skill for you.
Personal Addiction You were the addict. You blame Gaedren for your brush with death and hate how his drugs are causing similar problems among other youths. Fortunately, your body recovers quickly from toxins, and you have a +1 bonus on Fortitude saving throws.

Here are the updated stats for three PCs. I haven't got Puk's data yet.

BALIAN, CG Male Human ranger 4 (urban ranger)
Init +5; Senses Perception +8
AC 21, touch 14, flat-footed 18
hp 41 (3HD)
Fort +6, Ref +7, Will +2
Speed 20 ft. (4 squares)
Melee masterwork greatsword (two handed) +9 ((two handed) 2d6+6/19-20)
Melee masterwork dagger +9 (1d4+4/19-20)
Ranged masterwork dagger (thrown) +8 (1d4+4/19-20)
Ranged masterwork longbow (composite/strength rating+4) +8 (1d8+4/x3)
Base Atk +4; CMB +8; CMD 22
Atk Options Favored Enemy (Humanoid (Human)) +2
Ranger Spells (CL 4th):
1st (1/day) (DC 12) - lead blades
Abilities Str 19, Dex 16, Con 14, Int 7, Wis 13, Cha 7
Special Qualities Favored Community Korvosa +2, Track +1, Trapfinding, Wild Empathy +1
Feats Cleave, Combat Reflexes, Endurance, Following Step, Step Up
Skills Acrobatics +3, Acrobatics (Jump) -1, Climb +4, Disable Device +3, Heal +5, Intimidate +5, Knowledge (Geography) +2, Knowledge (Local) +5, Perception +8, Perform (Act) +3, Sense Motive +1, Sleight of Hand +4, Stealth +6, Survival +5, Survival (Follow or identify tracks) +7, Swim +4
Possessions masterwork greatsword; ring of protection +1; breastplate; amulet of natural armor +1; masterwork dagger; Masterwork Longbow (Composite/Strength Rating+4)
Favored Community Korvosa (Ex) You gain a +2 bonus on initiative checks and Knowledge (local), Perception, Stealth, and Survival skill checks. An urban ranger traveling through his favored community leaves no trail and cannot be tracked (although he may leave a trail if he so desires).
Favored Enemy (Humanoid (Human)) (Ex) You gain a +2 bonus on Bluff, Knowledge, Perception, Sense Motive, and Survival checks when using these skills against humans. Likewise, you get a +2 bonus on weapon attack and damage rolls against such creatures.
Trapfinding (Ex) At 3rd level, an urban ranger can find and disable traps, as the rogue class feature of the same name.

Trained actor You trained as a child to be an actor. You gain a +1 trait bonus on Perform (act) and Perform (act) is always a class skill for you. You also gain a free skill point in Perform (act).
Child of the Streets You grew up on the streets of a large city, and as a result you have developed a knack for picking pockets and hiding small objects on your person. You gain a +1 trait bonus on Sleight of Hand checks, and Sleight of Hand is always a class skill for you.
Reactionary You were bullied often as a child, but never quite developed an offensive response. Instead, you became adept at anticipating sudden attacks and reacting to danger quickly. You gain a +2 trait bonus on Initiative checks.


Quintilian, CG Male Human bard 4 (court bard)
Init +2; Senses Perception +5
AC 18, touch 12, flat-footed 16, Combat Expertise
hp 30 (4HD)
Fort +3, Ref +7, Will +4, +4 vs. Bardic Performance, sonic, and language-dependent effects
Speed 30 ft. (6 squares)
Melee rapier +1 +6 (1d6+3/18-20)
Melee longsword +5 (1d8+2/19-20)
Melee masterwork whip +6 (1d3+2)
Melee sap +5 (1d6+2)
Ranged shortbow +5 (1d6/x3)
Base Atk +3; CMB +54; CMD 17
Known Bard Spells (CL 4th):
2nd (2/day) (DC 15) - gallant inspiration, heroism
1st (4/day) (DC 14) - cure light wounds, innocence, memory lapse, sleep, timely inspiration
0th (at will) (DC 13) - detect magic, ghost sound, light , lullaby, mage hand, message, open/close, prestidigitation, read magic
Abilities Str 14, Dex 14, Con 12, Int 14, Wis 8, Cha 17
Feats Combat Expertise, Improved Feint, Skill Focus (Perform Comedy)
Skills Acrobatics +8, Bluff +14, Climb +5, Diplomacy +12, Disguise +7, Escape Artist +5, Intimidate +13, Knowledge (Arcana) +6, Knowledge (Geography) +6, Knowledge (History) +8, Knowledge (Local) +11, Knowledge (Local/Art & music) +13, Knowledge (Nature) +6, Knowledge (Nobility) +8, Linguistics +8, Perception +5, Perform (Act) +8, Perform (Comedy) +13, Perform (Dance) +7, Perform (Oratory) +7, Perform (Sing) +7, Perform (String Instruments) +7, Sense Motive +5, Sleight of Hand +6, Spellcraft +6, Stealth +5, Use Magic Device +7
Possessions rapier +1; masterwork chain shirt; masterwork buckler; longsword; masterwork whip; sap; wand (feather step); wand of cure light wounds; Shortbow; amulet of natural armor +1

Bardic Performance You can use this ability for 13 rounds per day.
Versatile Performance (Comedy) (Ex) You can use your bonus in the Perform (Comedy) skill in place of your bonus in the Bluff or Intimidate skills.
Countersong (Su) You can counter magic effects that depend on sound.
Distraction (Su) You can use your performance to counter magic effects that depend on sight.
Fascinate (Su) You can use your performance to cause up to 2 creatures to become fascinated with you (Will save DC 15).
Heraldic Expertise (Ex) A court bard gains a bonus equal to half his bard level on Diplomacy, Knowledge (history), Knowledge (local), and Knowledge (nobility) checks. 1/day, the court bard can also reroll a check against one of these skills, though he must take the result of the second roll even if it is worse.
Satire (Su) A court bard can use performance to undermine the confidence of enemies who hear it, causing them to take a -1 penalty on attack and damage rolls (minimum 1) and a -1 penalty on saves against fear and charm effects as long as the bard continues performing. This penalty increases by -1 at 5th level and every six levels thereafter. Satire is a language-dependent, mind-affecting ability that uses audible components. This performance replaces inspire courage.
Mockery (Su) A court bard of 3rd level or higher can subtly ridicule and defame a specific individual. The bard selects one target who can hear his performance. That individual takes a -2 penalty on Charisma checks and Charisma-related skill checks as long as the bard continues performing.

Trained actor You trained as a child to be an actor. You gain a +1 trait bonus on Perform (act) and Perform (act) is always a class skill for you. You also gain a free skill point in Perform (act).
Fast-Talker You had a knack at getting yourself into trouble as a child, and as a result developed a silver tongue at an early age. You gain a +1 trait bonus on Bluff checks, and Bluff is always a class skill for you.
Child of the Street You grew up on the streets of Korvosa, and as a result you have developed a knack for picking pockets and hiding small objects on your person. You gain a +1 trait bonus on Sleight of Hand checks, and SoH is always a class skill for you. You also gain a free skill point in SoH.


SHAOBAN, LN Male Human oracle 4
Init +0; Senses Darkvision (30 ft.), Perception +2, Clouded Vision
AC 23, touch 11, flat-footed 23
hp 23 (3HD)
Fort +2, Ref +3, Will +6
Speed 20 ft. (4 squares)
Melee masterwork mace (heavy) +7 (1d8+2)
Base Atk +3; CMB +5; CMD 16
Known Oracle Spells (CL 4th):
2nd (4/day) (DC 16) - cure moderate wounds, hold person, resist energy
1st (7/day) (DC 15) - burning hands, comprehend languages, cure light wounds, magic weapon, remove fear, shield of faith,
0th (at will) (DC 14) - create water, detect magic, purify food and drink, read magic, spark, stabilize
Abilities Str 14, Dex 10, Con 12, Int 8, Wis 14, Cha 19
Feats Armor Proficiency, Heavy, Lightning Reflexes, Weapon Focus (Heavy Mace)
Skills Bluff +7, Diplomacy +12, Heal +7, Intimidate +11, Knowledge (Local) +0, Knowledge (Religion) +6, Perform (Act) +9, Sense Motive +8, Sleight of Hand -1
Possessions masterwork mace (heavy); ring of protection +1; full plate +1; buckler; amulet of natural armor +1

Clouded Vision Your eyes are obscured, making it difficult for you to see.
Flame Mysteries You draw upon the divine mystery of Flame to grant your spells and powers.
Touch of Flame (Su) As a standard action, you can perform a melee touch attack that deals 1d6 points of fire damage + 1 per two oracle levels (1d6+2). Alternatively you can use this power to ignite your weapon as a free action, adding the same amount of fire damage to each of your weapon attacks during that round. You can use this ability a number of times or rounds per day equal to 3 + your Charisma modifier (7).
At 11th level, any weapon that you wield is treated as a flaming weapon, adding 1d6 points of fire damage + 1 per two oracle levels.
Molten Skin (Ex) You gain resist fire 5

Trained actor You trained as a child to be an actor. You gain a +1 trait bonus on Perform (act) and Perform (act) is always a class skill for you. You also gain a free skill point in Perform (act).
Child of the Streets You grew up on the streets of a large city, and as a result you have developed a knack for picking pockets and hiding small objects on your person. You gain a +1 trait bonus on Sleight of Hand checks, and Sleight of Hand is always a class skill for you.
Ease of Faith Your mentor, the person who invested your faith in you from an early age, took steps to ensure that you understood that what powers your divine magic is no different than that which powers the magic of other religions. You gain a +1 trait bonus on Diplomacy checks, and Diplomacy is always a class skill for you.

Chemlak wrote:

Grats on finishing this spreadsheet and thanks for sharing it with the community.

Guy St-Amant wrote:

Bon Voyage!

C'est çà, bon voyage.

MrVergee wrote:
Art Givens wrote:
On your harrowing readings, what information do you try to provide to your PCs? Is there any problem with the campaign, you ran across? I'll be starting this AP in May, trying to gather information.

For my Harrow readings I use the Paizo Harrow Cards and an excel worksheet that I found somewhere on these boards, which tells you what each card means. If you don't have the cards, you can easily use the worksheet by itself, because it does an automatic spread for you.

For the reading, base yourself on the official explanation of each card (easy with the excel worksheet) and mix in what you know about your PCs' background, present character or future events.

If you're having an extremely hard time at divining the meaning of each card during play, you could even consider doing the reading via e-mail. It will give you more time to think harder about how to express yourself. I decided to do my reading at the table, though, because they provide a marvelous opportunity at roleplay.

I got the worksheet in this thread. It was made by a fellow poster, R-Kelleg. Here's the link.

Art Givens wrote:
On your harrowing readings, what information do you try to provide to your PCs? Is there any problem with the campaign, you ran across? I'll be starting this AP in May, trying to gather information.

For my Harrow readings I use the Paizo Harrow Cards and an excel worksheet that I found somewhere on these boards, which tells you what each card means. If you don't have the cards, you can easily use the worksheet by itself, because it does an automatic spread for you.

For the reading, base yourself on the official explanation of each card (easy with the excel worksheet) and mix in what you know about your PCs' background, present character or future events.

If you're having an extremely hard time at divining the meaning of each card during play, you could even consider doing the reading via e-mail. It will give you more time to think harder about how to express yourself. I decided to do my reading at the table, though, because they provide a marvelous opportunity at roleplay.

Tels wrote:
Ok, I'm definitely going to have to get my hands on this module.

It is a great module, although quite deadly for level 1 characters, which it was originally written for. We played it at level 3 and I adjusted some of the adversaries, but not a lot. In hindsight, that was a good call.

If you like the Hangman's Noose I can certainly recommend Moonbeam's journal of this adventure, right here.

I've uploaded four more photos on my Deviantart page. You can find it here: MrVergee's deviantART gallery.

The high judge realizes that she has to take charge now. She checks the front door one more time, but when she still finds it closed, she beckons everyone to follow her to the courtroom. Quint acts as the prosecutor and calls Patrissa, judge Trabe and his companions to the stand, where they all repeat their confessions and visions. Wade still denies all the accusations and screams that he does not recognize the authority of this court. He still refuses to confess and laughs at the evidence. A silk shawl in his desk? There are hundreds of women in Korvosa who wear those. A gift to Patrissa, well, she is quite attractive, or at least, she used to be. A knitting needle and a scar that come together in a dream. Don't be ridiculous! Still, when everyone has said his piece and judge Zenderholm asks Wade to defend himself, he rejects this court again and refuses to speak any more.

"Then, in light of the evidence, Alastir Wade, I see no other choice but to find you guilty for the murder of Malene and her son Gabe, and indirectly for the death of Jarbin Mord. The penalty for such heinous crimes, under Korvosan law, is death." Zenderholm strikes her hammer on her desk as she delivers judgment.

Sjo wastes no time and drags Alastir Wade to the gallows. A new rope already dangles from the crossbeam as they enter. The Shoanti forces Wade's head through the noose. "Have any last words, murderer?" he asks.

"Damn you! Damn you all!"

"Yeah, whatever", Sjo shrugs. He turns to the lever that makes the floor drop from under the convict. A shadow has appeared there. The ominous figure's head still lolls obscenely to one side on its broken neck. The darkness in its face barely reveals one milky eye peering through a hole of its executioner's mask: it is the croaker. Slowly he reaches for the lever. He gives Wade one last look, then he pulls the bar. The rope snaps tight. Wade starts kicking and twisting freakishly, trying to regain his footing. He finds only air. As the seconds go by, the twitching lessens, until it stops altogether.

The shadow of the Croaker changes into the ghostly appearance of a man. He does not look handsome, but he has an air of honesty about him. He nods in gratitude and turns around. As he walks away he is not alone anymore. A beautiful woman is holding his left hand and a child walks to his right. After all these years the Mords have finally found peace.

Suddenly the atmosphere doesn't feel as suppressive anymore. It is as if a sigh of relief emanates from the courthouse. Sjo pulls out the bottle of Chelaxian Daemon-Spirit and uncorks it. He passes the bottle around, allowing everyone to take a sip. "I will even indulge myself and have a real drink for once instead of water", Sveth smiles. "So, when you were suffocating earlier tonight, that was fake as well?" Sjo informs. Sveth nods: "It was. A necessary deception, I'm afraid. I'm sorry for misleading you." Sir Rekkart Cole does not join in the fun; he seems to be upset about having convicted an innocent man to the gallows ten years ago. He also avoids Patrissa's company for the first time tonight, obviously blaming her for manipulating him.

When the companions try the front door again, they find it unlocked. Balian, Puk and Sjo make sure judge Zenderholm gets home safely. She promises them to take care of the loose ends: the bodies in the courthouse, the red tape and judge Silman Trabe. Meanwhile Quint escorts Patrissa Vrakes home and sweet-talks his way into her bedroom. He has some stress to release.

As they make their way down again, the companions hear the sound of clashing steel from the great hall. Two unknown men are locked in deadly combat. An old man with silver hair and a drooping moustache staggers backward as he defends himself from a tall, lean opponent with a top hat, a full black beard and a flashing rapier to match his intense blue eyes. Their blades clang and cast silvery sparks as the tall man launches another barrage of nasty thrusts. The heavier man's silver moustache drips beads of sweat while his green eyes show terror and strain. He can barely turn aside the attacks and ends up with a gash in his arm.

"What is this, in the name of the gods, stop this!" Sjo bellows. The four companions appear at the top of the stairs, causing the duelers to stay their hand and step back from the fight.

"There, judge Trabe ... HE is the one who lured me here! Threatening to sully my reputation with his lies concerning the long-closed case of Jarbin Mord. Here's the letter to prove it", the tall man exclaims. From his pocket he produces a piece of paper: "See this. Allow me to read it to you: 'I know which part you played in the case of Jarbin Mord. Bring 1,000 gold sails to the old courthouse if you want to assure yourself of my continued silence. Be there at 4 in the morning or suffer the consequences.' Signed by Silman Trabe."

"Well, I'll be damned. That is the letter YOU sent to ME, mister Wade, word for word", the old man retorts. He digs up a similar scrap of paper from his waistcoat. Quint takes both letters and compares them, they are in the same handwriting, although one is supposedly signed by Silman Trabe and the other by Alastir Wade.

"Hmm," Quint muses, "looks like you were both lured here by the same person, just not each other." The bard studies the two newcomers' faces and notices a slight scar peeping through Wade's facial hair. "So you must be Alastir Wade. We've been expecting you. Why don't you tell us how you killed Mord's wife and child?"

"I don't know who you are, young man, but I will not stand for this insult", Wade throws back as he launches an attack at Quint and draws blood. Balian and Puk storm forward for a fight, but Quint beats them to the punch by putting his assailant to sleep with his magic. In the meantime Zenderholm and the former jurors have joined the commotion.

"We've got the killer", Quint tells the high judge, pointing at Alastir Wade, while Balian and Puk tie him up. "We'll need proof, obviously", Zenobia Zenderholm replies. "We've seen it in our visions", Sjo remarks. "It's hard to prove anything based on a daydream. But we have to act quickly. Wade has to hang before dawn, lest we all perish."

"Let's start with that man over there," Puk interjects, "mister Silman Trabe. According to the late judge Felgor you knowingly sent an innocent man to the gallows. Care to explain?"

The old judge shuffles back nervously. "Wade here told me that Mord was innocent. But we needed to solve the matter quickly. An unsolved murder case in the courthouse would certainly blemish our good reputation. So he convinced me to let him see Mord and talk him out of getting legal aid. I don't know how he did it, but he made sure Mord didn't want a lawyer and he forced me to go along with that. I also had to put some names on the jury list."

"How did he force you exactly?" Quint inquires.

"That doesn't matter, suffice to say that he had the power to do so."

"Judge Trabe is right", Patrissa confesses. "Wade was the one pulling the strings, mine as well."

Sir Rekkart Cole looks disappointed: "Patrissa, what are you saying?"

"I'm sorry, Rekkart. But I have to come clean, our lives depend on it. Wade bought me the necklace in return for condemning Mord to the gallows. And he got me to manipulate you and Tablark Hammergrind to vote the same way. I thought Mord was guilty anyway, so I didn't see the harm. The opals were just a bonus for doing a job I would have done anyway."

"There you have it," Quint concludes, "looks like we have all the evidence we need. Time to finish it."

"Finish what? Have you suddenly become the judge here?" The sleep spell on Alastir Wade has ended. "I demand you set me free, I am innocent! And I can't be convicted without a proper trial."

"That is why we have the high judge present here tonight", Killian Paltreth reacts. Everyone looks at the older gentleman in the worn suit. His dull eyes suddenly gleam with renewed energy and his shoulders don't sag anymore. "The way I approached her, might have been a bit rough, I'd like to apologize for that, miss Zenderholm, but I was running out of time, and I needed Korvosa's most trustworthy judge to be here."

"You ... are Sveth?" Quint asks.

"That is my real name, yes", Paltreth replies, as he takes off his frayed top hat and pulls the broad handlebar moustache from his face. "Mord was my friend. When they took him to be executed, I stayed behind in his cell. That is when I discovered his message on the wall, asking me to avenge his unjust death after ten years. But I didn't know who was guilty, so I got everyone here who might have been involved. If I had known Wade was the murderer, I would have gotten him here earlier, but I already had my hands full getting the seven jurors here, so I had to improvise."

"And where is the real Paltreth?" Sjo asks.

"He's been dead for years", Sveth answers. "He hated himself for sending Mord to meet his maker. During the trial he caved under the peer pressure, just like I told you. Seven jurors were convinced Mord did it, and Paltreth was all that was in the way of a unanimous decision, so he gave the others what they wanted. After the trail he started doubting Mord's guilt more and more, so he turned to drinking ... a lot. It took three years for the alcohol to kill him."

"Well, the pieces of the puzzle are definitely falling into place", Quint muses. "Still, there is one thing that eludes me ... why ... why did you kill her? She was such a lovely woman. Why, Wade?"

"She was more than lovely, a rare beauty. I never understood what she saw in that dim-witted monster", Wade retorts. "He didn't deserve her ... but, that doesn't mean I killed her! This ... what you are doing ... it is a charade. I demand a real trial!"

"It is true that we need a fair trial", Sjo nods. "But if we do, and you are found guilty, I'd happily hang you myself. Judge Zenderholm, how should we proceed?"

Since two more rooms in the building remain unexplored, the companions decide to search those first. Maybe they will find more clues there ... The tower above the courtroom's entrance is wet from the rain and salt wind blowing through the arrow slits. An old rust-covered bell hangs from rotting wood beams. Puk sneaks a peek inside the clock, but Sjo pulls him out, fearing the heavy bell might crash down. Still, nothing happens. Looking out through the narrow windows, the companions see the nightly storm continuing to rage over the city. Darkness limits the view, but on a beautiful day the tower probably provides an excellent outlook on Korvosa.

Next is Mord's attic apartment. The small room is a mess. A double bed sits in one corner, toys of carriages, horses and knights are strewn over the floor and a rocking chair has fallen over. Balian's eyes turn white as he receives another vision. At the same time Puk, Sjo and Quint see how the shadows behind the rocking chair stir and a dark shape frees itself from the wall. The shade is obviously female, her seductive hour-glass figure is wrapped in swirling veils. The shape of her head is less attractive, though, having been cut off at a slanted angle. Quint urges the shadow not to attack: "Miss Malene, how can we serve you? We are here to help. Can you tell us who killed you?" With a sigh the shadow takes on a less aggressive posture. The graceful fingers on her dark hand point to something on the floor in front of the rocking chair, a knitting needle. Then she disappears.

"Why do you all look like you've seen a ghost?" Balian suddenly asks when he notices the surprise on everyone else's face. "I am the one who just had a vision, not you guys ... I wasn't babbling or anything, was I?" It is obvious that the ranger missed the episode with Malene's ghost completely. The others smile and urge Balian to tell them what he just witnessed. The ranger found himself in the killer's body again, standing over the beautiful woman in the rocking chair. As he raised his axe to strike, she jumped up defiantly, knocking over her seat in the process, and lashed out with her knitting needle. With his left hand he touched his cheek; his fingers came away bloody. Then he struck!

So, that is it, then. The man with the scar on his left cheek is the killer! The same man Puk saw in his vision. But this man was blond and his description doesn't match anyone who is locked up in the courthouse tonight. So how can they make the murderer pay if he is not here?

After everyone has healed up Quint informs about the name they discovered in the upstairs office: Alastir Wade. Zenobia Zenderholm confirms the man is a lawyer and Patrissa says she might have met him; she has had so many suitors. When the bard confronts her with the buyer's receipt for the string of fire opals around her neck - which were paid for by this illusive Alastir Wade - she admits to having dated him a couple of times. He gave her the necklace and she still wears it today, not because Wade was precious to her, but the piece of jewelry itself is the most precious and beautiful piece she owns. It should not sit idly in a jewelry box. Although the companions doubt Patrissa's story, they cannot catch her in a lie.

Quint also wonders how Mord's jury was formed. It can't have been a coincidence that two jurors already had a grudge against the executioner before they were called upon to judge the man: Madge Blossomheart blamed him for hanging her father and Ebin Bazel hated Mord for outshining and thus humiliating him in public. Zenobia says that Korvosan citizens are normally selected for jury duty at random by a courthouse clerk. The prosecutor and defense attorney can reject certain candidates if they feel those people are biased, but since Mord chose not to have a lawyer, Madge and Ebin made it to the final eight. Judge Zenderholm has no knowledge of foul play in the selection process, but admits it could surely happen if the clerk was manipulated.

Ebin Bazel tires of Quint's accusations: "As far as I know I was selected fair and square. Yes, I didn't like Mord, but the man was a heartless executioner and a crazed killer, who deserved to hang! It is obvious that Mord is not just out for revenge against ME, for I am still alive while others have already died. Even the four of you, so-called defenders of judge Zenderholm, have been under attack, several times already! I mean, that fire-wielding healer guy almost died just now", Ebin spits out, pointing at Sjo. "A great job you have done protecting us, half the jury lies dead, killed twice over! And I'm still here, so I'm not the one to ... (cough), I ... I'm not the ..." The jester's face contorts and he looks as if he's about to be sick, sticking out his tongue in an effort to clear his throat. Then he bites down. Blood pours from his mouth and streams over his chin as his tongue falls to the floor. He has bitten it off!

At the same time the shadow of a hanged man glides over the wall and both Patrissa Vrakes and Killian Paltreth grab for their own throats as well. Miss Vrakes is clawing at her necklace, which seems to be strangling her, while Paltreth drops to the floor, foaming heavily at the mouth. His flask of brandy tumbles from his grasp, emptying its remaining fluid over the floorboards. Ebin also sinks to the ground, coughing wetly, convulsing and gurgling through the current of gore pouring down his own throat.

Puk pounds Killian Paltreth on the chest in an attempt to get the man to breathe. Quint and sir Rekkart Cole rush to Patrissa's side. Her necklace is squeezed to tightly around her neck that they barely manage to get the tip of a dagger behind it. Snap! The next moment twelve fire opals scatter over the floor and Patrissa grasps for air. Balian draws his greatsword and shouts for Mord to show himself, while Sjo smashes his mace into the shadow on the wall, chasing it from existence.

Paltreth also starts coughing and breathing again, but Ebin Bazel is not so lucky. The jester has suffocated in his own blood. Another juror lies dead, although it is the first time that the companions managed to save someone as well.

"What happened?" Quint wonders. "Did Paltreth's brandy suddenly turn to poison?" The bard kneels down next to the fallen flask and dips his finger in the spilled fluid. When he brings his fingertip to his lips, he does not taste any poison at all, in fact he tastes very little of anything. It seems to be water. He also wants to know if this latest attack was magical in nature, still resisting the idea that vengeful spirits can control reality through sheer will. The bard casts detect magic and while he finds no traces of magic in the air or the building, he sees that judge Zenderholm is wearing a magical ring. Sir Cole's chain shirt also radiates some blue light and Paltreth has some magic shining from under his clothes.

Quint convinces his friends to head back downstairs. He wants to question Patrissa about her necklace. As the companions walk across the great hall on the ground floor, the chandelier in the middle of the room swings ominously and breaks free, smashing down on Balian, Puk and Quint and pinning them on the floor.

Sjo, who remained out of harm's way hears a disturbing gurgle coming from behind. Madge Blossomheart's disemboweled cadaver draws closer, dragging her entrails behind her. As the bloated horror approaches, she is followed by the corpses of the three other jurors who lost their lives tonight: Malgar Hurkes, Hal Five-Toes and the dwarf Tablark Hammergrind. Strips of Madge's innards have wormed their way into the back of the heads of these three unfortunates, causing them to jerk about wildly like marionettes. More of miss Blossomheart's guts fly around her like sticky tendrils that suddenly lurch at the companions. One of the entrails lashes out at Sjo and wraps around his shiny new armor, which wonderfully protects him from the first bites and claws of the three undead puppets, but provides little protection against the more tentative way Madge's bowels attack. Puk and Quint wriggle free from under the chandelier, but the halfling is so nauseated by Madge's appearance that he has to empty his stomach first. Balian also pushes free and jumps to his feet, drawing his greatsword from its sheath. The gutdragging lurcher's entrails lash out at everyone now while her three servants attack viciously. None of the companions escape the repeated assaults unharmed and Quint and Sjo have to resort to healing to keep everyone standing. Balian feels a bit disoriented: he wastes precious moments hitting thin air before his sword swings true. Malgar Hurkes' husk is the first to fall. Meanwhile Sjo is struggling to free himself of the bowel that is creeping over his body, trying to force itself into his mouth. Quint makes for the source of the attack by leaping across the battlefield to Madge's position, but Five-Toes claws tear at his flesh while he does so. Madge's insides strike left and right and swirl around everyone's upper body now, moving up to try and choke them.

The sound of battle has alerted the people in the courtroom. Sir Rekkart Cole opens the door, clearing the way for Spyder to join the fray. The dog charges forward, aiding his master in the fight. While Sjo is working hard to hold off Hal Five-Toes clawing corpse, the others now focus on Madge. Sir Cole prays to his lord Abadar and sends waves of positive energy through the air, healing the companions of their worst wounds. Still, this is not enough to save Sjo, who can't ward off Five-Toes bashings any longer and goes down. The Shoanti did his utmost best to protect his friends by drawing as many enemies on himself as possible, but even his new suit of armor couldn't withstand this tidal wave of attacks.

Balian is more successful now, hitting down Hammergrind and cutting through Madge with the same tremendous swing. Quint thrusts his blade in her corpse as well and even Spyder tears flesh from her bones. But, as is so often the case, it is the smallest combatant who strikes the final blow. When Puk stabs his short-swords in Madge's disfigured torso, she fall to the floor, never to move again.

Heading back to the main hall the party of heroes and jurors passes the only other door in this edifice that should actually lead outside and to everyone's surprise, it opens easily. Rain and wind welcome the companions to a large open-air chamber, overlooking the stormy waters of the bay. Unfortunately it is a cage that bars off escape on every side, even overhead. The space is divided in two by another set of bars, with a rusted cage door providing access to the second half. Hollow indentations in the ground mark the shallow graves of criminals who were executed here in the past. There are no name tags or tombstones to identity the poor wretches.

Sjo walks up to the cage door and pulls it. Rust flakes jump off the hinges as the iron grate creakingly swings aside. Madge Blossomheart suddenly steps past the Shoanti with a blank stare in her eyes. Sjo grabs her by the arm, preventing her from entering the second half of the potter's field, but at the same moment rotted hands claw through the dirt: six corpses burst out of the ground! "Daddy? Daddy? I'm here ..." Madge moans as she tries to pull free off Sjo's iron grasp, reaching for the worm-infested ghoul on her right. The creature welcomes her embrace by tearing a huge chunk of flesh out of her belly. Some of the other undead assault her as well, quickly making her go limp in Sjo's hands. The Shoanti pulls her back and closes the gate, while his companions take care of the ghouls on this side of the fence. Still, the undead reach for Madge's unconscious body through the bars, clawing at her guts that are now spilt profusely over the ground. Anger wells up in Sjo's chest as he pulls the grate door open again and leads his friends in a short, but decisive charge against the three remaining ghouls. Then his rage give way to a touch of despair, as he realizes that death comes for the jurors, no matter how hard he and his friends work to prevent it.

Ebin Bazel, the failed jester, comes to the same conclusion. "Why are we still following these so-called heroes? Are we supposed to be safer around them? The undead are picking us off one by one! And they don't even have to come looking for us, because we just come to them! Why didn't we stay in the courtroom? Whose stupid idea was it to join them?"

"Well, I genuinely felt we would be safer around them ..." Patrissa sighs, still shaking from the gruesome butchery she has just witnessed. "Maybe we will be in less danger in the courtroom where we woke up", Sir Rekkart Cole admits as he puts his arm around Patrissa's shoulder. The ample-bosomed woman nervously toys with her necklace and agrees. Judge Zenobia Zenderholm, the dog Spyder and Killian Paltreth join the other jurors to the courtroom where this nightmare started.

Quint and his friends continue their search of the building on the first floor. The lounge where tonight's first victim, Malgar Hurkes, was hanged from his own chain sports a set of stairs and two more doors. One of these doors leads into the barrister's offices, a large area partitioned into smaller cubicles by wooden walls. Most of the old desks have been emptied long ago, but there are still some documents and books lying around. One of the offices apparently used to belong to public prosecutor Zenobia Zenderholm, while another desk was the working space of someone called Alastir Wade, a barrister. In a drawer Quint finds a red scarf of Varisian silk. Balian says that it looks a lot like the clothes worn by Malene, Mord's murdered wife. When the ranger saw her in his vision, she was dressed in a similar fashion. Quint also discovers a buyer's receipt for a string of 12 fire opals, made out to this Alastir Wade guy. The necklace's description matches the one Patrissa Vrakes is wearing. It was quite expensive, at 2,500 gold sails. It must have been a very generous gift indeed.

The second door from the lounge opens up into a long hallway with a small set of wooden stairs in the corner and a door to the baliff's office, a dank room with mold-covered couches, some wooden cabinets and a weapon rack with some rusted arms and armor. Quint weaves a detect magic and notices some slivers of green light emerging through the cracks of a coffer in the corner. When Balian unlocks the lid, the coffer bursts open revealing a wretched corpse of a man in a faded blue uniform. A handaxe protrudes from his chest. It lurches forward and bites into Quint's flesh, before it is finished off by Balian's greatsword and Puk's little blades. The magic Quint discovered traces back to eight potions of cure light wounds on the bottom of the coffer.

silee wrote:
Does Zellera have a last name?

No, that is up to you.

Tels wrote:
Cori Marie wrote:
A good one to lead into History of Ashes would be Seven Swords of Sin, though I don't remember the level range, so it may require some tinkering. But it's in Kaer Maga which is right by the Cinderlands.

I would advise against this, Seven Swords of Sin was a module designed by a contest at Paizo of, "Who can make the deadliest room in a dungeon?" They then ran the rooms at a convention to see whose room is deadliest.

Later on, they had a bright idea of combining some of the choicest rooms into a module. This module is basically designed to kill parties.

I don't know the module well and I cannot comment on its deadly character. It was designed for level 7, still in the 3.5 system (as is CotCT). The main problem I would have with this module is this: the quest is about retrieving a sword, which is the same quest as in 'Skeletons of Scarwall'. So if I were to use it, I would definitely contemplate making it about something else than a sword.

You should definitely use Kaer Maga, as it is on the way to the Cinderlands. I'm not really familiar with the 'Shattered Star' AP, but its third installment, The Asylum Stone takes place in Kaer Maga and starts at level 8. Maybe you can get some inspiration from this module.

The Shadow Gambit and The Twofold Demise are also set in Kaer Maga, although you will need to make some level adjustment.

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If your daughter is playing a girl, this might be a nice fig:


Very nice tie-in with Rolth here.

If you want to provide a hint to the PCs that Rolth was kicked out of the Acadamae, you could have a chance encounter in the streets with some Acadamae students. Imagine this: Rolth is herding the children to the abandoned theater, acting all superior around the little lambs. Suddenly he notices some young men and women in the streets, who are obviously dressed like Acadamae students. Rolth immediately drops the bossy act and tries to hide, but fails miserably at that. The students notice him, start gossiping in hushed but accusing tones and give Rolth despising looks. One of them might even spit at Rolth or insult him.

Rolth feels very embarrassed and works out his frustration on the first lamb who dares laugh at him or who questions him about what just happened.

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I had been wondering lately when the art department would finally get some of its well-deserved time in the spotlight. We've been getting so much wonderful art from Paizo, that we're totally and utterly spoiled, while I don't really know who at Paizo deserves (at least part of) the credit for this. And it's not just the art work, but the complete lay-out of the modules and books that is just fantastic. You guys come up with amazing covers for the AP's as well, that mark these products as top of the bill! I'm very excited to see that you'll be getting a monthly blog. And even if you guys don't draw the art yourselves, do know that the extraordinary quality of your work defines Paizo products as the best in the market. So, a big thank you!

PS: I would be interested in seeing how you guys put together the cover of a product or even how you integrate art in the text on a page, or the tricks you have to pull to make the text fit a page. Maybe we can see some examples of your technical brilliance in a future post.

Hi Chelmak

I'm happy to hear things are looking positive in your family. It is good to know you have your priorities straight and put family first. The community here at Paizo can wait and your work so far has been excellent already.

So to be clear, when Paizo announces its new books, the covers aren't ready yet, so they make temporary covers using older material. This way they can already make a page for the book and people can already comment on it in the messageboards.

The white cover shows a drawing from one of the Rise of the Runelords books, which was used to build this mock cover for Curse of the Crimson Throne. Webstores like Amazon already put up these covers to offer the book for pre-order. The problem is that they often don't change the cover to the new version, so the temporary one can survive for years, while it was never really printed.

So CotCT was only printed in one version, which was 3.5 and not the Pathfinder rules. Still, they are more or less compatible, and as other posters mentioned here, you can find a lot of conversions and sometimes even new builds for the NPCs on the internet.

If you want to buy this complete AP, you'll find it hard to pick up the second installment "Seven Days to the Grave", as it is sold out and can only be bought secondhand for ridiculous prices. The PDF version will of course always be available here at Paizo for a normal price, so there is a solution.

Well, I still enjoy reading the books and I hope that the TV series will actually force Martin to pick up the pace again.

To some extent I have to agree with Patrick here. I buy my mini's via e-bay, so I can handpick them (no possibility of trading where I live), so I usually select some old D&D minis as well in my 'basket'. My wife, who knows nothing about gaming or minis, apart from what she sees me doing in my study from time to time, generally appreciates these D&D minis more than the Pathfinder ones. Granted, those few hand-picked D&D minis are generally some of the finer pieces, while I buy most of the Pathfinder collection, including the uglier sculpts and paint jobs. But the D&D line definitely had some excellent figs and Pathfinder has had its ups and downs as well.

As a customer I can only applaud the extra miniature line. I just hope that the increased competition in the market (even though both lines come from the same company, they will be competing for our attention ... and money) will not put one of the lines out of business. As long as both exist, there will just be more choice for all of us. But of course, we'll have to wait and see what happens.

Hi Olondir

I'm very pleased to see you posting your plans for the AP here. It is a great way to bounce our ideas off each other. We have already shared some thoughts over private mail, but it will be great to hear what others think and have to offer in term of suggestions and inspiration. I'm definitely looking forward to reading your detailed plans.

Like you I am someone who likes planning in advance. I was a player for several years in a friend's campaign, but the GM blood in me urged me to start planning a new campaign. This gave me ample time to prepare. In all, I must have taken two to three years. I've always used existing adventures, but I try to tailor them to my taste and the taste of my players. I absolutely love Curse of the Crimson Throne and the fact that I'm modifying it - sometimes quite heavily - by no means suggests that I don't like it. This is just my GM'ing style, I take the published material and make it my own. Moreover, a lot of the changes I made were inspired by other Paizo material, so this gives them even more credit.

Despite the planning you still need a lot of improvisation talent as well. You might try to anticipate every little detail, the players will still find ways to surprise you, but I'm just the kind of guy who feels more at ease when well prepared. That being said, our group has always been quite easy-going when it comes down to being 'railroaded'. As long as the road they are following is exciting and believable, my players will not veer from it too much. We like stories with a lot of 'plot' and railroads are generally better at developing plot than sandboxes. Knowing that certainly strengthened my resolve to dig in when I was getting the campaign ready. I feel that you and your group are like us in that regard.

I'd like to wish you the best of luck running your campaign in future and would love to read about all your wonderful or crazy ideas here on the boards.

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Congratulations to you, Victoria! It is great to see how happy this makes you.

Sounds nice. How did your players enjoy the battle? Did the battle rules work well enough to have fun? Did your PCs also take an active role in the fight, as unit leaders or strategic generals or something? Did you use a map to indicate where each separate battle was being fought?

Nice turn of events with Brom Arvanxi, impatient little Chelaxian boy ... serves him right to be banished. And one more competitor out of the way :-)

The deal with Roderic is cool as well. I'm a bit confused as to why he doesn't get a vote himself after withdrawing from the race; he could have voted for the PCs too. By the way, Bloodsworn Vale is a good bargaining price to seal the deal. There is a module on it, which is too low in level for your players, but you could place a powerful dragon in it if you wanted your PCs to clear the valley for Roderic.

The companions decide to continue their search; with some luck they will run into the missing blacksmith on the way. Their next stop is the gallows. When they enter this cold and gloomy room with its large instrument of death, Puk's eyes turn white as a new vision washes over him. He finds himself swinging from the end of a rope again. Most of the onlookers are laughing and cheering as he is desperately trying to draw breath, others seem sad or shocked, but only one man has a satisfied, almost relieved look on his face. He is a handsome fellow with blond locks and piercing blue eyes. His fingers run across a fresh, thin scar on his lower left cheek. The halfling shares his new insight with his friends, wondering who the blond-haired person is. Could it be the cleric of Sarenrae who entered the courthouse one year after Mord's death and who never came out? He was said to be good-looking and cradled a burst of golden manes. Still, if he had anything to do with Mord's murder, why hadn't the curse ended when he perished nine years ago? Zenobia Zenderholm cannot really place the blond man either, so his identity remains a mystery for now.

Zenobia leads her protectors to another room which she identifies as the executioner's preparation room. Mord used to come here to ready himself before delivering justice. The windowless chamber only contains a small table, a stool and a chest. A black hood hangs from a hook on the wall, a length of rope coiled on the floor beneath. The chest holds an unopened bottle of Chelaxian Daemon-Spirit, which is just over 25 years old. The strong whiskey must be worth at least 150 gold sails, Balian says.

The far corner of the courthouse holds the cell block. In the lane between the cells lies a headless skeleton, obviously all that remains of the wizardess Sashrala. This time it is Sjo's turn to go through another flash back. Again he holds Sashrala's severed head in his blood-covered hands. He notices a shadow on the wall and suddenly feels a cold hand grasping his throat. Its iron fingers start crushing his neck. White spots dance before his eyes and then everything goes black before the Shoanti returns to the present. As he tries to shake off the disturbing aftereffects of this unnerving mind trip, Balian and Quint discover Hal in the last prison cell. The burly man is sitting on the floor, gently rocking to and fro with his back to the onlookers. In front of him is the jar that held his toes, its fluid spilled over the floor. Gazing over his shoulder they are horrified to see he has tried to reattach his pickled toes to his foot. The rot from his putrefied digits has already spread over his stomp. When he turns around the real horror becomes clear: the blacksmith has turned into a gangrenous ghoul. He sinks his teeth into Balian's neck, but the ranger fights off the paralyzing effect of this bite and chops his greatsword in the undead's body in return. Puk quickly finishes the job with his flashing short swords

The cell opposite Hal's turns out to the brig where Mord spent his final days. The executioner used a piece of rock to scratch a message in the wall: "I served as an angel of death my entire life. I shall have my own justice, even if it be in death. Sveth, my only friend, you will find this when you clean the cell. You are my avenging angel now. Bring these liars and fools back to me after I swing, so that I may have my peace. Ten years to the day, then they will pay. When the true murderer of my beloved Malene and my boy Gabe swings from the gallows as I did, on the tenth anniversary of my hanging, then at long last I shall be free. J.M."

Zenobia identifies Sveth as the son of the cleaning lady who served in the courthouse. The young man was indeed friends with Mord and his family. Quint connects the dots and says it is probably this Sveth guy who jumped lady Zenderholm in the streets of Korvosa and gave her the message to come here tonight. The judge nods in agreement.

One more room remains in this part of the building, the torture room. Brutal machines to coax confessions from the accused fill this mournful chamber. A flaying rack rests against the far wall, an iron maiden stands in one corner. Next to it sits a restraining chair adorned with all manner of crushing vices and punishing screws. Suddenly the spirit of a small boy rushes out of thin air, trying to push Sjo into the chair, but when his attempt fails the translucent figure disappears again, leaving no proof of his existence. Using a detect magic spell Quint sees a faint outline of magic appearing through the cracks of the iron maiden. As Sjo pulls free the lid he stands eye to eye with the dried corpse of Kelgaard, the blond priest of Sarenrae who was one of the adventurers that invaded the place one year after Mord's death. The undead horror emerges and uses his paralyzing touch to freeze the Shoanti in place while tearing through his flesh. Balian and Puk jump to the rescue and make short work of the former priest of Sarenrae. He drops to the floor with a loud bang as the weight of his full plate hits the stone tiles. The magic Quint saw a few moments earlier seems to emanate from this piece of armor. Sjo wipes it clean of the worst muck and sees the chest is decorated with a radiant image of the sun goddess. Quint cleans the armor properly with a prestidigitation, allowing Sjo to admire the true beauty of this full plate. Although the Shoanti's free spirit was too fierce to be tamed by the lore of just one god, he does feel a close connection to the Dawnflower and her power over fire, so he is proud to don the armor that bears her resemblance.

Quint realizes that no one has ever found a shorter path to revenge. He has only just learned that his mother was murdered by the key-lock killer and already he faces the culprit, albeit in undead form. Determined to end the miserable creature once and for all, the bard spins into the room. His friends join him - with Puk finishing off a first of the four zombies - but are then overcome by a sense of dread emanating from the horrible serial-killer. They immediately flee the morgue, making their way up, leaving the bard alone, surrounded by four undead. Although his raging heart withstands the key-lock killer's aura of fear, Quint sees and feels the precariousness of the situation as his mother's murderer viciously cuts through his flesh with a clawed hand. The dashing comedian strategically retreats, but suffers another grievous wound, leaving him just breaths away from the grave himself. Fortunately the walking dead don't follow the heroes upstairs, so they have a moment to regroup, heal and wait for Puk, who ran all the way to the great hall before coming to his senses.

Sjo informs his friends that the four undead who crawled out of the compartments in the wall are zombies, who can be damaged with slashing weapons like Balian's and Puk's blades, but have a certain amount of resistance to his blunt morning star or Quint's piercing rapier. The key-lock killer is something different though. While the Shoanti can't put a name on it, he understands that the undead's physique is probably vulnerable to bludgeoning weapons and magic. He enchants Balian's greatsword with a magic weapon for this purpose.

The companions make their way down once more. Puk quickly puts down a second zombie in the hallway and this time only Balian falls victim to the key-lock killer's fearful aura. While the ranger flees upstairs again, the halfling continues his zombie slaying spree. Sjo uses his healing magic to burn the key-lock killer, but it is Quint's rapier that runs the poor wretch through, setting him free for his journey to a probably very unpleasant afterlife. As the undead abomination falls down, he whispers: "Forgive me."

The halfling, Shoanti and the bard search the room, but find nothing more than bones and decayed corpses, before they realize that the ranger still hasn't returned from his second retreat upstairs. As they make their way back to the great hall, they find their friend locked in conversation with the former jurors. The sound of running and the cries of fear alarmed them, so they came out to find out what was going on. The dwarf Tablark Hammergrind tells his fellows not to worry, but Patrissa feels safer staying with the heroes.

There is one more room that connects to the great hall that the companions haven't examined yet. Zenobia tells them it is the jury deliberation chamber. It contains a large table and a dozen rickety chairs. Quint's keen eyes spot some words carved in the side of the table: "Who's laughing now, Mord? E.B." How typical, the stupid jester Ebin Bazel thought it was funny to convict someone to the gallows, did he? As the bard grunts with frustration, screams erupt from the hall. Hammergrind's voice loses its steely resolve as the dwarf sighs in total fright: "It ... it's him ... the croaker has come for us ..."

The grizzled old miner drops to his knees as the companions rush to his side and notice a lumbering shadow at the top of the stairs. The thing's head jerks obscenely to one side atop a broken neck. Its face is covered in a rotten death shroud, a milky eye peering through one hole and its black teeth visible through another rent in the fabric. A horrid rasp of air croaks out pain and misery from the thing's crushed throat. The dwarf moans like a tortured animal and Quint is horrified to see that he is clawing at his own eyes. The bard grabs the old miner and tries to restrain him from hurting himself, but the frightened man struggles like a rabid dog and gives Quint a head but square in the nose. As the bard abandons the grapple his friends surround the panicked dwarf and try to knock him out, but he slips under their attacks and turns around to flee. Blinded by the blood Hammergrind can't see where he's going and slams into the huge chandelier lying in the ground. Losing his balance the dwarf trips. Blood spatters as the unfortunate creature impales his head on one of the candle spikes. His brain has been run through ...

Meanwhile Sir Rekkart Cole charges up the stairs and swings at the hulking headman with his own executioner's axe. "May the might of Abadar strike you down!" As he connects with the dark form his weapon hits nothing but air, revealing the shadow to be a mere illusion. Stupefied he returns to the others to calm down lady Patrissa, who is still trembling. Sjo and Balian pull the skewered dwarf from the chandelier and place his body in the deliberation room. When they come out, Madge suddenly notices that Hal Five-Toes is missing. He must have run off during the chaos and panic. But where did he go?

I've ordered two batches of singles from US based sellers on e-bay recently and ended up paying a ridiculous amount to Belgian customs and taxes (about 50 % of what I paid, and yes, they charge you on the total sum, which includes shipping).

There are some EU sellers on e-bay as well, at least one in the UK and one in France, but they usually don't get their stock until later, so if you miss their new batch, you risk missing out on some of the rarer or more popular mini's. By then it is usually harder to find them for a decent price in the US as well and shipping costs make it unwise to order just one or two mini's from over the Atlantic. So you have two choices, wait for the EU sellers to get their products in and risk missing out on some of the figs you want or buy them in the US and pay a huge amount to your government (I feel inclined to use some bad language here, but I won't because of messageboard etiquette, not out of respect for my country in this issue).

I'd certainly be interested in learning where to get single mini's in the EU for a decent price.

If your PC doesn't make a move, someone will definitely step in and take over, but it would be so much cooler to have a PC in charge. Olondir's suggestions are excellent, if your players want to rule the place, they should have to deal with some challenges.

Well, this brings back memories ... I played a paladin once in the classic 'Feast of Goblyns' adventure. He swore to protect and help a damsel in distress, but when the party found out she was evil (this being Ravenloft and all) he had to oppose her. The DM 'rewarded' my roleplaying by stripping my character of his paladin powers, so all I had left was a bad and very underpowered fighter.

Don't punish your player for good roleplaying; swearing an oath of obedience to his queen who needs his help is very much in character. If she turns out to be evil, he should feel conflicted about it, but he should not be punished in gaming terms. You could even build in a scene in your story in which the character's deity gives him a sign that he is no longer supposed/allowed to serve Ileosa (maybe you could work it into the third Harrow reading, if you haven't done that yet). On the contrary, he is now instructed by his god to stop the evil queen.

Remember that roleplaying games are about fun. Don't spoil your player's game night by punishing him for being misled, not when you were the one who was willingly and knowingly misleading him in the first place.

Amber Scott wrote:
Your second sentence (“Its dark matriarch…”) is too long. I appreciate a compound sentence as much as the next judge, but when you put too much information into one sentence you risk losing its meaning.

I don't know if I'm speaking for myself, for other non-native speakers as well or even for some native speakers, but I find your language quite hard to read. I don't mind rereading a sentence now and then, but when I have to do it too often, I lose interest. Both the construction of your sentences and your choice of words makes your language difficult. I love it when you use some fancy words here or there, but too much of a good thing is not a good thing anymore.

I'm sorry to say that I didn't completely read your proposal because of this. I wish you the best of luck in this competition, but unfortunately I won't be voting for you. If you do win, I hope you write the adventure in an easier-to-read language.

Jim Groves wrote:
S'mon wrote:
My dream would be a really heavily political AP, Game of Thrones style, where the PCs started out as young nobles and have to deal with intrigue, *war*, revolution, treachery et al.
Sounds cool to me! Don't think that you're all alone with this wish.

Nope, you're not alone at all. Count me in as being interested.

An actual war with the Shoanti, I like it.

Akavar Whisperquill wrote:

She was playing heavily the seduction card, smiling and touching us quite frequently.

It worked...

Lol, funny how two simple words like "It worked" can put a smile on your face. I really feel your journal has become more fun to read again over the last couple of months, as if you've gained more inspiration or pleasure to write.

I also liked seeing Ambrose Kroop again. Ever since I bought his miniature from the Pathfinder Battles line I've had a soft spot for the man.

Since Arkona is known as a bit of a do-gooder in Old Korvosa (he provides cheap lodging for the poor), you might have him receive his guests after all and explain that he only wanted to help the famished citizens by providing free food. Of course he was oblivious to the Hammer Boys scheme and thanks the PCs for taking care of their operation. Still, he wants to continue his aid to the hungry Korvosans and might even enlist the PCs' aid for a new plan (you could have your players come up with suggestions of their own).

An early cooperation with Arkona at this stager of the game will only make "Escape from Old Korvosa" more interesting. Arkona is a very smart man and he is a master at seeming to be something that he's not.

I'm enjoying your journal so far, Iadel. Since you are writing from the point of view of a character, am I correct in assuming that you are a player and not the GM?

Olwen wrote:
The following contains spoilers for Unfamiliar Grounds by Christopher West and published in Dungeon 121.

Actually it was 119, but who's counting?

So, you've got your PCs eating goblin now? I hope he at least had some flesh around his bones. Probably tastes like frog legs ... I don't know if you play with minis, but if you do, I can certainly see the appeal of playing this adventure. DND goblins weren't very attractive, but Pathfinder goblins absolutely ROCK! I'd be thrilled just placing the figs in the table ...

Still, it must have been a hell of a fight: your PCs had not found a chance to rest yet, they were ill-equipped and they were already running away from a near-lethal encounter. Again you have three PCs in their negatives, ouch! Fights on the edge are always very exciting, but I bet your players are craving an easy victory by now.

pjackson wrote:
MrVergee wrote:
In case of the Rakshasas, they don't want their secret to spread, so they fight to the death to protect it.
If they die their secret is revealed, so unless they know it has already been revealed it is a motive not to fight to the death.

I admitted that it wasn't the best of motivations. In my campaign I won't use the Rakshasas at all, just because this is too big a secret. The PCs will want to kill the Arkonas for being monsters and the Arkonas will want to get rid of the PCs because they know their secret.

My approach is to have Glorio be a master manipulator, who wants the PCs to work with (or even better 'for') him. If I make him a rakshasa, that will only be in the way of this plan. So I will actually go for Tel's suggestion to have Arkona try to broker a peace with the PCs.

Still, when I get into the logic of the adventure as written, I feel that the Arkonas will probably fight to the death to protect their secret. Of course their secret will be out if they die, but at least they died trying to protect it.

In case of the Rakshasas, they don't want their secret to spread, so they fight to the death to protect it. I might not be the best motivation, but it will have to serve.

On the other hand, each GM can decide for himself how the Rakshasas act.

Lakesidefantasy wrote:
I seem to remember reading something about the title of Field Marshal for the leader of the Korvosan Guard being a misnomer and is only used out of tradition. I think it is in reference to Field Marshal Jakthion Korvosa who basically founded Korvosa.

That is correct.

There is no official information on this. In my campaign she is only married to her job.

Rocket Surgeon wrote:

He fails his acrobatics check on the icy bridge next game session.

Silly, yes, but still very true :)

You're such a downer ...

Hi Olwen

A very exciting opening session, very lethal as well. It'll be interesting to learn how this AP goes. I wish you happy gaming.

A little bit of research reveals a red dragon in the proximity of Korvosa from the Golariopedia):

"Glarataxus is a red dragon who has periodically plagued the towns and settlements near the Varisian city of Korvosa since 4569 AR. Absent for years, he will suddenly lay waste to a community with no perceivable reason and disappear just as quickly. His most recent attacks were on the communities of Veldraine, Korvosa, and Palin's Cove in 4674 AR. Attempts to negotiate with and appease the dragon have always failed, but this may be explained by a recent revelation: Glarataxus is deaf."

The dragon is also mentioned a handful of times in the timeline at the end the Guide to Korvosa.

I have no knowledge of such a creature, except for Sabina Merrin's black dragon in the sixth installment of Curse of the Crimson Throne.

Best of luck to you. as long as you keep on writing, things will be okay.

Moonbeam wrote:
Wow, that's a pretty creepy revelation for Quint's origin. It's a good thing he didn't become a serial killer himself... though adventurers do tend to do a lot of killing as part of their daily routine... :)

Well, as a matter of fact, I've never played in a campaign that left so many adversaries alive. It's a nice change of pace.

Akavar Whisperquill wrote:
So I drew my dagger and slit her throat.

Ouch, that is cold, Akavar.

I love it when stories get so personal that they force PCs to step out of their 'character' or comfort zone.

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