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The Senator smiles. "I do put great stock in them. Both have served me well and faithfully. The Admiral may hold the information we need to end the Empire's hold and return democracy to the galaxy." He smiles at your enthusiasm. "If you're willing, I will ask Captain Sirona to leave immediately. Unless there's anything else I can answer for you?"
The dragon's snarl turns from pained to triumphant as Ruperta touches him with her glowing hand. With an audible SNAP you hear the sound of chains breaking and the shadowy dragon rears up and stretches his winds in relief. "Free! Free, finally free!" He looks down at the smaller humanoids arrayed in front of him and smiles a draconic grin.
"You have my gratitude, little ones! The bonds that held me prevented me from speaking of my imprisonment without death. And death within these walls is an eternity of entrapment. No soul may leave while the chained one remains. I leave now, free after a hundred years of imprisonment. Behind me lies my hoard, what treasure I could find in this place. It is yours as payment for my freedom. I suggest you too leave these accursed place, lest the chained one bind you as well."
The dragon Bellshallam launches himself into the air with a blast of wind that staggers you backward. In a moment he is just a small speck in the distance. And then he is gone, leaving you alone in the haunted castle.
Good job! Go ahead and level up!
Organa listens closely as you speak of lightsabers and pursuit. "I've taken the liberty of having Captain Okeefe lay several hyperspace trails when she comes here using droid probes. Her droid RX-7 is quite good at them; even if Lord Vader follows the correct trail here, you will be long gone to Felucia and I do not believe he will bother us. We are too visible for his sort of thuggish tactics." He smiles somewhat mysteriously. "I am practiced at hiding my true intentions. It's a consequence of a life in politics."
The dragon screams as Slumper's rapier and shield crash into and through it. Blood fountains from the wounds, hot and red, but the dragon seems only to grow angrier. At Sial's words it snarls, as though forcing the words out, "Not. That. SIMPLE. Stronger. Spell." But then it screams in pain as invisible chains tighten around it, digging into its flesh and cutting it without mercy.
Ruperta, you're up!
Paxs summons a babau as Corbyn tries to move around the dragon to flank it.
Asyra's chains lash out at the dragon! Attack: 1d20 + 17 ⇒ (8) + 17 = 25, Attack: 1d20 + 17 ⇒ (9) + 17 = 26, Attack: 1d20 + 17 ⇒ (9) + 17 = 26, Attack: 1d20 + 17 ⇒ (9) + 17 = 26 All four lash against the scales of the dragon, but none can find purchase! Sial screams "Dispel the bonds or the thing will slaughter us all!"
Ruperta and Slumper are up!
You are shown to beautiful rooms and each given access to a refresher and clean clothes if you so desire. At dinner time you are shown into, not a formal dining hall as you might expect, but the Senator's private dining room, where a lovely woman sits feeding a baby girl. The girl is currently laughing wildly and flinging what looks like orange paste all over the woman, who smiles tiredly and continues trying to feed her.
The Senator enters, wearing casual clothing now, carrying plates and silverware. "I'd like to thank you formally for helping Maya. She's currently resting, but I wanted a chance to speak with you in a setting that was less... intimidating." He dodges a flung spoon, laughs and retrieves it, wiping it clean on a napkin before handing it back to his wife.
He is interupted by the opening of the door to the kitchen, as a droid brings in a tray filled with food that smells delicious. The food seems to be plain, not fancy, but tastes wonderful. During the meal Bail and his wife chat with you, mainly pleasantries, asking after your families, places of birth, etc. Midway the dinner is interupted by a somewhat staid looking man who enters and kneels before Bail's wife, referring to her as 'Majesty' and asking if she would approve a task force to look into trade talks with the Kosbin Federation. After dinner Bail's wife, Breha, who you now realize is the Queen of Alderaan, leaves to put their baby daughter Leia to bed.
Bail turns to you, looking serious now. “I’ve asked you to join me today because the agents of mine that you rescued seem to think you can be trusted. Since you worked hard to help them, I believe I can put my faith in you as well. I have a task that needs to be completed, but unfortunately my status as a Senator prevents me from taking care of it myself, or even from sending someone directly associated with the Royal Family."
“The planet Felucia was ravaged during the Clone Wars, but once the fighting was over, the Empire set up a permanent facility on the world. Nothing large—just a small garrison where they could keep prisoners out of the way. Some months ago, I was contacted by an Imperial Admiral who was disillusioned with the way the Empire had twisted the once-great Republic, and he began feeding me sensitive information. A little over a week ago, that communication stopped. My agents tell me that the Admiral has been taken to Felucia, where he is being held against his will. I’d like you to learn what has become of him, and rescue him if you can.”
The board begins to shake as the planchette whirls across the letters.
REST WHY WOULD I WANT TO REST FREEDOM I WANT FREE FROM THIS HELLHOLE DESTROY THE WOMAN DESTROY THE WARDENS WIFE FREE ME FREE ME FREE ME
The planchette gives a sudden lurch and flies into the air to land at the feet of the corpse.
Despite the Doctor's best cajoling, the pilot droid Crash wants nothing to do with his offers of repair or upgrade. In fact, with a squeal of parts that need oiling he gently backs the Doctor out of the cockpit and seals the door.
The rest of the journey is over quickly. Over the comm, Crash's metallic voice sounds, "Roger, roger. We are approaching Alderaan. Prepare for hyperspace exit and approach to planet. Odds of imminent meat death are very slim, but there is always hope."
The ship gives a slight shudder as it exits hyperspace, coming in toward the blue and green gem that is Alderaan. Captain Sirona's voice comes over the comm next. "I have received permission to land at our patron's compound outside Aldera. Make yourselves pretty, folks. It's introduction time."
A few moments later the yacht lands and the doors open with a soft hiss. Waiting at the bottom of the ramp are several discreet looking security officers and a handsome man in blue and silver clothes. He smiles at Maya and Sirona and clasps their hands in his, murmuring words of inquiry. After a few words are exchanged, he looks up at the rest of you.
"Maya tells me you were instrumental in her escape. Please, welcome to Alderaan. I am Senator Bail Organa. You have my thanks for aiding my agents. I wonder if you would accept an invitation to join me and my wife and daughter for dinner in two hours? My men can show you to quarters if you'd like to refresh yourselves. I am honored to welcome you to my house."
Quen and Mahath meditate together, the Force becoming unified amongst them and around them. Images flash through their heads, mostly random images of life around the galaxy, but suddenly one image forces itself forward.
A great white egg-shaped pod is opening with a hiss and puffs of smoke. As the top rises off the bottom, a nervous Imperial officer waits outside it. "My lord Vader, I have intelligence from a small station orbiting Brenntal. Jedi have been spotted fleeing in a small craft. My informant tells me they had lightsabers and used jedi magic."
There is a moment of silence. The officer looks frightened, as a man clad all in black armor, its surface absorbing the light steps out of the egg-pod. His voice is metallic, but deep and powerful.
"Fetch my ship. I leave immediately."
The vision ends abruptly as a cold chill washes down your backs.
Okay, the spirit planchette it is!
Ezechias pulls the spirit board out and lays it upon the ground. Sitting next to it, he places his hands lightly on the board and calls out to the spirit of Father Charlatan. For a moment nothing happens, then the planchette shoots to YES, seemingly without the conscious effort of Ezechias.
Okay, with the brass planchette, you may ask a single question. What do you ask?
Slumper's sword finds purchase in the dragon's flesh, causing it to scream with rage. Ruperta's healing helps sooth the party, but the dragon seems enraged by the whole ordeal. He bites at Slumper! Imp Vital Strike Bite: 1d20 + 26 ⇒ (12) + 26 = 38 for 6d8 + 12 + 5 ⇒ (4, 3, 6, 5, 7, 1) + 12 + 5 = 43 damage!
Pai casts dispel magic, trying to shake off the chained spirit's hold on the dragon! Level check: 1d20 + 10 ⇒ (10) + 10 = 20. but she can't quite overcome the spell! Edit: never mind. Either roll didn't quite get there!
Sial seems Slumper nearly bitten in half and his eyes war between flight and fight. Finally he points at the dragon and murmurs words of law and order. SR Check: 1d20 + 11 ⇒ (13) + 11 = 24 His spell seems to break through the dragon's defenses and damage the wyrm. Order's Wrath: 5d8 ⇒ (4, 2, 2, 7, 8) = 23 Will Save: 1d20 + 15 ⇒ (17) + 15 = 32
Laori murmurs a prayer, cutting her skin as she does. SR: 1d20 + 10 ⇒ (18) + 10 = 28 Suddenly a column of flame tinged with black fire pounds down upon the dragon! Reflex: 1d20 + 10 ⇒ (12) + 10 = 22 dealing 10d6 ⇒ (2, 1, 6, 1, 2, 6, 1, 1, 6, 5) = 31 damage!
Paxs and Corbyn are up!
The star yacht is a well-made ship, obviously designed for a wealthy client, but gone a bit shabby along the way. The only crew are the Captain, Sirona and a droid that looks hobbled together from spare parts. With legs from some sort of bipedal bird looking droid, the arms and torso of a protocol droid and the head of a stock Trade Federation combat droid, it nonetheless seems to function well as a pilot. It gives its designation as RX-13, but answers to "Crash" more often than not. If anyone visits it, it spends the time in a constant low-level series of complaints, mostly about how little appreciation it receives for its many accomplishments, along with regrets over the lack of a proper oil bath facility on the ship.
Sirona, meanwhile, spends her time with Maya, discussing the "mission" and wondering over the identity of the man frozen in carbonite.
Zanu studies the balcony and determines that it could support the weight of one person at a time.
Cireth studies the chains around the body, but they don't seem to be magical in nature, only mundane, with several holy symbols attached to them.
Despite your efforts to search and prod, the body never moves, though you do find a faded journal obscured by the robed corpse. The journal is half illegible and from the entries you can read, you determine that this is the body of Father Charlatan, imprisoned up here because his crimes were less heinous than most. However in his diary he rails against the 'pious fools' who imprisoned him here, stating that while he might have been guilty, his crimes were not so terrible to warrant Harrowstone without the intervention of the same 'pious fools'.
Pai staggers as Paxs falls and Thrak disappears. Sial's face is screwed up with pain as he calls out, "We need to break the hold on the dragon! It is an effect of evil and needs to be dispelled!"
Asyra snarls in a vulgar tongue and moves up behind Slumper. The dragon snaps at her, Bite: 1d20 + 26 ⇒ (7) + 26 = 33, dealing 2d8 + 13 ⇒ (6, 8) + 13 = 27 damage. Asyra's chains lash out 1d20 + 17 ⇒ (5) + 17 = 22 for 2d4 + 4 ⇒ (3, 2) + 4 = 9 damage, but seem to simply skip along the dragon's thick scales.
Ruperta and Slumper are up!
1d4 ⇒ 3
Mahath manages to deflect several of the blaster bolts, sending them careening into the walls and floor, but two slip past his defenses and stagger him. Seeing him falter, Quen rushes onto the ship, but pauses on the ramp. Feeling his master's words echo through him, he reaches through the Force toward Mahath. Mahath feels the Force envelop him and he does not resist, as he floats gently onto the ramp as the ship begins to take off.
With Maya and the cargo secure, the rest of you scramble onboard in time to hear the Captain, a human woman, shout toward the cockpit, "Crash! Get us out of here before those blast doors shut!"
A metallic voice rings back through the comm, "Roger roger, Captain. Brace for minor possibility of catastrophic impact followed by meat death." The ship's engines roar as the yacht shoots forward, the ramp barely closed when you get to the end of the bay. The ship suddenly twists in midair, sending the cargo and all of you flying sideways! There is a tortured sound of metal on metal as you scrape through the blast doors, barely exiting as they close! Suddenly the yacht rights itself and you hear the metallic voice again. "Station escaped. Entering hyperspace in 3,2,1."
The yacht's flight calms as the stars stretch outside the viewports. The Captain reappears, smoothing her hair down, with Maya holding onto her shoulder. "Welcome aboard the Banshee! Maya tells me you were instrumental in getting her and the cargo safely off the station. I'm Captain Sirona Okeefe. Our pilot is Crash, a droid of dubious skill. So, let's see what's in the box that nearly got you killed." She moves to the hovering crate and pulls a prybar from a nearby toolbox. Prying open the crate reveals a figure, frozen in carbonite.
"Well. I'll be. Live cargo, eh? Well, I only move them. I don't ask questions. Anyway, our employer would like to meet you, if you're willing. Judging by the lightsaber, I'm guess you might have similar interests. If you're willing, I'll escort you to him when we reach Alderaan in four hours. Until then, you have the run of the yacht. Medbay's up that way, bunks are through there. Refreshers around the corner and kitchen's in there." She points out the various rooms, then nods to Maya and heads toward the cockpit.
Talk amongst yourselves, feel free to roleplay any use of the ship and what have you. I'll resume at Alderaan when you're ready.
The doctor fires a shot, which hits one of the stormtroopers, drawing their fire in return. Quen makes a motion with his hand, but the stormtroopers barely register the impact. It seems the Force is fickle today.
Vagrux's shot seems guided, as it hits a 'trooper and knocks him down, flattening him. But it's Mahath's ignition of a lightsaber that causes the biggest reaction. You hear the Stormtroopers, and even some bystanders murmur, "Jedi!" as they aim at the trooper and fire!
The troopers fire at Mahath!
Three of the shots seem to find purchase! Make your deflect checks, Mahath!
Shot 1: 3d8 ⇒ (6, 6, 4) = 16, Shot 2: 3d8 ⇒ (1, 5, 4) = 10 and Shot 3: 3d8 ⇒ (4, 4, 4) = 12 damage!
Maya limps toward the ship, where a woman wearing a jumpsuit and vest lacking any markings rides the ramp as it opens downward. "Get in!" she cries as the ship's cannons spin and orient on the stormtroopers! Autofire!: 1d20 + 2 ⇒ (14) + 2 = 16 for 3d10 ⇒ (2, 10, 1) = 13 x 2 = 26 damage! The stormtroopers fall as the cannon unleashes, leaving scorch marks behind!
There is a klaxon blaring as blast doors slowly begin to descend to blow the escape of the star yacht!
Heroes are up!
The stormtrooper's blank facemask turns toward you, then back to the officer. You hear him mutter, "Sir, these folks' images match the APB put out by Imperial Security. Aiding and abetting a known Rebel, sir."
The Imperial officer seems to waver. "But they need to plug in the... They have the proper paperwork... They may go." He finally seems to settle upon releasing the cargo to you, his face settling into a mask of authority. He waves dismissively to you and allows you to float the crate away.
As soon as you're out of sight of the Imperials, your commlinks buzz. "This is Maya. I'm back in action. I just observed the transaction, but you need to move. The Imperials sent out a request for backup. I have an ship on the way for extraction. Meet me in Bay 26, Blue Quadrant ASAP."
You recognize the bay number from the usual numbering schematic of the station; it's about three bays away from you. Moving quickly and confidently with the cargo floating ahead of you, you find yourself in a huge cargo bay that could easily hold a freighter with no problem. A Baudo class Star Yacht is entering, landing in the bay about 100 meters from you. Maya limps into view from a side door, heading toward the yacht, which is lowering its entry ramp.
Unfortunately, at the same time, a small squad of six stormtroopers burst into the bay behind Maya! They point at Maya, then spot you and you hear them shout, "There they are! Blast them!"
The heroes go first! You have about 100 meters until you reach the ship. The cargo crate can move at the speed of the person directing it, but they must stay adjacent to it to direct it.
The officer looks momentarily confused. "This cargo is theirs. The paperwork has been filed. We will be going now with the cargo." He presses a lever on the repulsor sled and the cargo floats away, remaining floating at around navel height. The stormtroopers seem to exchange glances. "But sir, this cargo contains a biological anomaly. Regulations state it must be quarantined." The officer's face seems to waiver between confusion and certainty.
What do you do? The officer is fighting the compulsion. Make Deception checks or act to stop him from throwing off the mind trick!
As you move south you approach the door hanging open. Once a kitchen, this room is now nothing more than charred, blackened remains. Despite your best search, you find nothing save rat droppings and dead spiders.
To the south, you find a hallway lined with cells. Each cells contains the remains of a bench, a scorched chamber pot and a blackened skeleton, contorted in pain. You move warily, but none of the dead rise or give any sign of intelligence.
This guard area is blocked from the cellblock by an arc of iron bars. Within sits an old wooden table and a few chairs. The table is nearly rotten and contains only moldy illegible paper and broken quills. Behind the table is an exit to the outside, but you recall the balcony it connects to being unstable. You may go out if you wish, but you did pass a Perception check earlier to notice its decrepitude.
The next cell is different: Although this cell is rather spacious, it contains no concessions to comfort. A skeletal body dressed in the rotting remains of a prisoner’s robe lies slumped against the eastern wall, wrapped in numerous chains on which are affixed numerous weights emblazoned with several different holy symbols.
Weapons hidden and wounds bound, you head toward the cargo bay that holds your prize. You gain few looks, mostly since no one seems to want to mess with the Imperial uniform. When you reach the cargo bay you find it open.
The massive hangar smells of exhaust fumes and spilled coolant and appears to have seen quite a bit of activity recently. Crates stand stacked up throughout the hangar, waiting for whatever shuttle is to transport them down to the surface. Three doors lead off the left side of the room; the bottom two are close together, and the top door leads into a control room with a transparent window overlooking the hangar itself.
Slotting the chip into a reader located on the cargo bay wall, your chip directs you toward the rear corner of the cargo bay, where a small LED light has begun blinking on your package to help you identify it. You move around a large stack of crates and see your package...
Being moved by a repulsorsled driven by an Imperial officer and escorted by four stormtroopers. The package is large: a crate 8 feet long, four feet wide and at least 1.5 feet deep. The stormtroopers stop when they notice the LED blinking and turn to look at you. The officer calls out [b]"Is this package yours?"[/ooc]
What are you doing?
Slumper has to run to reach the dragon and even then his sword thrust skips off the dragon's thick scales!
Bellshallam looks scornfully at the array of heroes in front of him and rears his head back, breathing a mist that seems to suck the very life from you! Reflex Save DC 24 for half damage! Negative Energy Breath: 14d8 ⇒ (3, 8, 4, 3, 8, 7, 2, 5, 8, 2, 8, 3, 2, 6) = 69
Sial Reflex: 1d20 + 4 ⇒ (3) + 4 = 7
Sial, Laori and Asyra all fail, and Sial looks positively ashen. He cries out in pain and limps away, pausing 30' back to cast a cure spell upon himself. CMW: 2d8 + 10 ⇒ (6, 8) + 10 = 24
Laori cries out in ecstasy as the pain fills her, her face aglow with something that is both intensely personal and somewhat disturbing. She seems to erupt with an aura that fills everyone with a destructive urge! Everyone automatically deals +5 damage and confirm crits without re-rolling for 10 rounds. Of course, this also includes the dragon... This done she bows her head and seems to swell with strength!
Pai, Paxs, Corbyn and Thrak are up!
Asyra steps in front of Sial and assumes a defensive position. Ruperta touches Bellshallam, who steels himself for pain and feeling none, just looks momentarily confused. In the confusion, she hops away, appearing atop a nearby staircase!30' of hop used!
Nice idea, but the effect on him is immune to the Call. Slumper is up!
"Kazavon is dead and gone. Perhaps you should be, too!" Looking frustrated, Bellshallam lunges at Ruperta!
You can only ready a single action. And as this is a surprise round, I'm going to assume you use it to get out of the way!
Bellshallam's jaws close on air as Ruperta disappears with a POP and reappears next to him!
Ruperta and Slumper are up!
You move quickly toward the main cargo bay in Blue quadrant. As the turbolift doors slide open and you step out onto onto this deck, it is like entering a wholly different space station. The floors are polished and possess a metallic sheen, and the massive windows along one wall grant the most magnificent view of Brentaal available on the station. Maintenance and service droids flit about from one place to the next, keeping everything clean and ordered.
Moving about the halls of the deck are large numbers of Humans, most of them wealthy by all appearances. They pay little attention to the few aliens found in the area, except, perhaps, to sneer as they pass.
Perception checks, please!
Perception DC 20:
You overhear two humans speaking about some sort of Imperial alert that happened a few moments before. Seems that several stormtroopers headed to the main cargo bay nearby. "Must be some sort of smuggling bust again. Pitiful, really. Scum always floats to the top.
Quen reaches out with the Force and seizes a crate that has fallen. He hurls it at one of the thugs, who falls with a boneless thud.
Vagrux fires at another of the thugs, dropping him, while Chel seizes another crate and takes out another thug!
Mahath stands up, feeling the flow of the Force through the room. Without looking he aims his blaster and fires a single shot not even at the foes. Instead it ricochets off three walls and plugs the last thug in the back of the head, dropping him to the ground! Jex fires wildly at the thugs' hiding spot, but is somewhat surprised to see that all of the thugs are now dead or disabled!
The Doctor, in the midst of the blaster fire, realigns his comm and speaks to Switch. Switch replies quickly, "To the rear of the cargo bay there is a red crate with an Imperial sigil on it. It pivots if you push it to the left. Behind is a large enough air duct to crawl through."
In a matter of moment the cargo bay is free of blaster fire, but filled with fire suppressant foam and the blare of klaxons. Outside the blast doors to the cargo bay you can hear the sounds of booted feet, followed by the smoke from a cutting torch as someone tries to cut their way in with a plasma torch.
Following Switch's instructions you head toward the crate, find it pivotable as advised and escape into the duct systems. Switch's voice sounds on Doc's comm, "Remember our deal! I will be in touch!"
The duct system brings you out in a disused maintenance shaft, allowing you to find your way to a corridor that can take you wherever you wish to go. Where do you want to go?
Between the acidic globs that Zanu flings at the stirges and Sonny's scimitar, the stirges both die before they can sink their pointy proboscii into your flesh!
Xerice, they were at 0 HP and staggered. Only one action, so they can move or attack, but not both. REASONS!
Once the stirges are down, you can search the area, but find nothing of any value, just debris. To the east you see a double door, one side of which hangs open. To the south the guard post awaits, plus several more doors.
The dragon's eyes narrow. You get the idea that he's not the sort to take to too much flattery. Still, your manners seem to convince him to pause in his attack. "I am Bellshallam. Why are you here, human?" There is something off about the dragon, who seems to be trying to fight off some sort of compulsion or control you cannot see.
Knowing is half the GM battle! The other half is looking up the rules while the players aren't looking! GI-Pathfinder!
Indeed, they work best when the victim is already helpless. And these are, unfortunately, staggered from the channel that Xerice laid down, so they can move or attack, but not both. Poor little 'suckers.
The east door leads to a tower staircase that seems to go up quite a distance.
The door Ruperta checks shows a large chamber, perhaps once a stable or kennel, has been gutted. Wooden partitions that may have been stalls lie shattered and burnt, leaving only divots in the walls, floor, ceiling, and a few stone support pillars. The floor is a tangle of broken beams, dung heaps crawling with vermin, and the occasional gleam of polished bone. The whole chamber is shadowy and dim, the darkness seeming almost palpable.
1d20 + 29 - 10 ⇒ (4) + 29 - 10 = 23
However Ruperta's door sight is suddenly blinded as a great shadow moves in front of the door and bursts it open, tossing her backwards! It reveals a huge dragon, black and sleek, that moves with a disturbing, serpentine grace, its eyes glowing as if lit from within by crimson embers. Shadows seem to cling to it, as if they had mass.
The great dragon roars, a sound that shakes you to your core! Will Save, DC 24 or be shaken for 5d6 ⇒ (6, 6, 6, 4, 6) = 28 rounds!
"Intruders! Thieves and scoundrels!" It pulls its head back as if to breathe upon you!
Special attacks: attach, diseased, and blood drain. Special defenses: none.
Xerice channels! Will: 1d20 + 1 ⇒ (4) + 1 = 5, Will: 1d20 + 1 ⇒ (10) + 1 = 11 and Will: 1d20 + 1 ⇒ (13) + 1 = 14 Her unholy faith flows over the buzzing blood-suckers and seems to wilt them! They buzz a little less vigorously then they did before...
Sonny steps up and slashes, but the little things are agile and avoid his blow!
Cireth bends the light fantastic and sprays it all over the stirges: Will: 1d20 + 1 ⇒ (14) + 1 = 15, Will: 1d20 + 1 ⇒ (16) + 1 = 17 and Will: 1d20 + 1 ⇒ (20) + 1 = 21 Strangely enough all three resist his spell!
The three stirges buzz and move into Sonny's, Cireth's and Zanu's space, provoking attacks of opportunity from Sonny and Zanu!
Zanu is still up, and then Ezechias and Caesare!