Ah, so, Zadira knows they have a lot of gold ore... hmm. I'll say that she retroactively kypes approximately 10% of it, figuring they won't miss such a small amount. I mean, surely the dungeon overlord guy realizes her team still needs treasure, after all. ... And now back to our regularly scheduled stealth team, and all possible future repercussions.
To conceil his and Emilie's scent, Simon will conjure a puddle of water onto the ground. With a grimace, he takes several hands of now-mud to cover his face, hands, armbit and bottom with it.
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Okay... Zadira can probably use some of her earth spells to remove at least a portion of the non-gold part of it as well at some point, if we need to lessen the weight... and that means she might have to tell Grelthe about it so she can help carry it. ... But, you know, let's put that off as long as possible. :)
Vuzi books it along with Grelthe. When she sees the twins she yells at them. Leaf dem alone ve have more fun stuff for you to beat up. Come on. We haf to hurry."
The tailing party masks their scent as fast as possible. The trolls snuff around and get dangerously close to the group before one shouts something and they rush off down a tunnel to the east.
Back at the shop, the twins look at Vance who shrugs and joins you on the way back. They don't smell any better than before...
The tailing party follows the Trolls into the next cavern. It's large and spacious and REEKS TO HIGH HEAVEN. There was a literal monster of magically animated crap on the first level and that was NOTHING compared to this. You involuntarily gag!
DC 14 fort or be Nausiated!
3d20 ⇒ (12, 2, 12) = 26
The trolls shrug off the stench and proceed into the cave.
As you follow (assuming you don't botch your save) you hear voices talking. One is the Knght in Shining Armor and the other is a bubbly, sticky, vile sounding voice. The trolls but in on the conversation, Hey! That's our job! You give him to us!
The gross voice responds in clear surprise, Wha-- What are you three doing up here! This is my guy! I found him first!
One of the other trolls chimes in, Come on, Max. I know you don't have any friends, but we have a job to do and you stink worse than normal out of your muck pile.
Vance and team have not yet arrived.
Fort Save: 1d20 + 5 ⇒ (9) + 5 = 14
Snakey's Fort Save: 1d20 + 9 ⇒ (15) + 9 = 24
Vuzi encourages Vance and the twins to move faster. "Vu wanted to show dem how great you are. Hurry up."
Oh, why does everything down here smells like ****?: 1d20 + 10 ⇒ (12) + 10 = 22
With qucik paws, Simon pulls a well worn strap of cloth from his backpack and binds it over and around his sensible nose - without breathing the whole time.
With burning, tear-filling eyes and a drawing sense of utter disgust, Simon tries to discern who (or from the smell: what) in the name of Gozreth this 'Max' is.
Frch!: 1d20 + 10 ⇒ (13) + 10 = 23
If Simon would not have prevailed and even crept ever closer to the smell, Emily surely would not have set another paw forward at this point.
Seriously doubting whether her brother still had any kind of smell, she nevertheless follows him in.
Otyughs are particularly vile and horrid creatures that lurk in places most sane creatures avoid. Their lairs are middens, cesspools, offal pits, toxic swamps, and sewers—the greater a lair’s filth, the greater the draw to the refuse-eating otyugh. They glory in the role of scavenger, wandering through vast underground caverns in search of the choicest cuts of garbage and waste. Upon finding such refuse, they gorge upon it, gathering what cannot be consumed in one debauch to bring back to their foul-smelling lairs. Otyughs spend most of their time in these filthy dens, which they keep constantly filled with carrion, dung, and worse sorts of stinking effluvia.
Intelligent creatures dwelling in subterranean areas near an otyugh often form a partnership of convenience with the disgusting beast. These creatures gladly provide their refuse and piles of raw meat to the otyugh, transforming the creature into an effective form of trash disposal. In return, the otyugh leaves its benefactors alone, and does not attack them, possibly even acting as a guardian.
The most horrifying thing to most races about the notorious otyugh is not the nature of its diet or its choice of lairs, but rather that a creature with an otyugh’s tastes can be anything other than a mindless scavenger. In fact, otyughs are surprisingly intelligent, and often quite eager to form alliances with those who offer them a steady supply of delicious diversions in the form of offal and waste. Most otyughs understand the fact that other creatures find them unpleasant and hideous, but few really care.
Unlikely: 1d20 + 6 ⇒ (20) + 6 = 26
While he creeps along, trying to breath as shallow as possible, Simon remembers a story once read in a 'borrowed' book, back in his youth.
A horror story about a waste eating and horting thing living in sewers under great towns, eating the peoples waste - and sometimes the people themselves when they were not careful or bullied the creatures.
Leaning close to Zadira he whispers:
"Maybe its a ... Otyu-ahhh
Otyugha... Otyughy ...
They can be friendly if you offer them wenough aste to eat-grch."
Zadira plugs her nose with some waxy stuff normally used as a spell component.
I believe snakes normally use their tongues for sense of smell, so not sure how bothered Snakey is.
The trolls look at each other and exchange a couple quiet words in Giant, then offer, Somebody recently ripped through the Spider Queen's spawn. There's a bunch of spider bodies down near us now while she raises a new brood. We'll deliver you some of them.
The Otyugh named Max considers this, then tosses the Knight to the side. Find. Deal.
It quickly squelches and oozes over to the most vile mostly liquid refuse pool and slides in, disappearing completely in a matter of seconds. The Knight struggles to his feet, and the trolls Charge!
One is noticeably faster than the others and closes the distance in a blink of an eye. The knight barely gets his defense up in time to stop the claw swipe!
The Elf with the ax charges in to help followed by the Chelaxian woman. The Gnome stays back, but it's hard to see what he's doing.
7d20 ⇒ (16, 15, 1, 19, 9, 17, 5) = 82
The two slower trolls arrive and focus on the Knight. He goes into full defense and acquits himself well, though he is clearly sorely pressed. The other two, showing their inexperience with trolls, split their attacks among all three. They have some success, but the wounds they manage to inflict are superficial and quickly start healing. One of the trolls wields a huge tower shield and stands as the anvil to the other two troll's metaphorical hammer.
This continues for several dozen seconds before Vuzi arrives with the Twins and Vance. At this point the Knight is on his last leg, almost literally as the fast Troll bites nearly clean through his right thigh, leaving a gaping wound. The other two have also taken several hits and only the Gnome, who has been slinging some kind of magic about, remains unwounded. None of the three trolls are even hard pressed and one, the smallest, is even laughing as the Elf tries to bring his ax to bear.
You can send in the Trollvary now, or wait for thing to get a little more desperate, your call.
Grelthe doesn't want them to get TOO hurt, and will desperately encourage the boys onward! She looks as though she might dash out to help at any moment as well, but for the moment is staying put.
Zadira signals >Send in the trolls!<
With his resources running low and the tide of battle turning against his companions the gnome thinks, I might be burying 19, 20, and 21 today
He is brought back to the moment by the resounding laughter of the smallest troll and yells, ”You think that’s funny try this; Why do Trolls have big nostrils?”
Before he can deliver the punch line his Poppet jumps out of his satchel and interrupts ….
”Because they have big fingers,” Poppet pronounces with glee.
Ranged Touch Attack, Weird Words, Jester: 1d20 + 11 ⇒ (13) + 11 = 24
Weird Words Damage (sonic): 8d6 + 7 ⇒ (5, 4, 1, 2, 2, 1, 6, 5) + 7 = 33
Painful stare damage: 1d6 + 2 ⇒ (2) + 2 = 4 only if damaged by weird words
in addition the small troll takes -2 to will saves, and if it took damage it takes a -2 on attack rolls
Ranged Touch Attack, Weird Words, Poppet: 1d20 + 12 - 4 ⇒ (20) + 12 - 4 = 28 shooting into melee calculated in
Weird Words Damage (sonic, Poppit): 8d6 + 7 ⇒ (2, 1, 6, 4, 5, 1, 5, 2) + 7 = 33
Poppet crit, touch attack: 1d20 + 12 - 4 ⇒ (6) + 12 - 4 = 14 shooting into melee calculated in
Weird Words Damage (sonic, Poppit): 8d6 + 7 ⇒ (2, 6, 2, 1, 3, 1, 5, 3) + 7 = 30
Swift action = Compelling voice
Standard action = Weird Words
Free action = Painful stare
Standard action =Weird Words
Move action = jump out of satchel
Resources used: 3 rounds of bardic performance
GM Choon, please give me an idea of how bad off I am, but I can clearly see that I am injured so...
Harkon starts to think how this all came about as he senses a potential end to his ever present fight against evil. First, his day starts out crappy when Chet over there (thinking of the crap monster) grabbed his leg and started tossing him around like a rag doll. And if that were not enough, life added injury to insult, as he only let me go when these...UGH...trolls sauntered into the area. At least he was free now, but they were impossibly fast. Now, he has a lame leg which will have to be addressed before this fight continues...and now what, (seeing the party enter the area) more contenders for the title??? What a crap day...
Using a reservoir point as part of movement to Dimension Slide to the backside of one of the trolls (hopefully a smaller one) that can give a flank bonus with the Chelaxian woman. He will then swift action lay on hands himself LoH: 4d6 ⇒ (6, 3, 1, 3) = 13 and then make an attack against the troll power attack+flank: 1d20 + 10 + 2 ⇒ (12) + 10 + 2 = 24 for damage: 2d6 + 15 ⇒ (5, 1) + 15 = 21.
Mr. Shiney does a cool trick and the Gnome uses some truly hateful words as two rotting trolls roar and charge in! They are clearly beginning the rot, but they are coming to the rescue of the "newcomers" and hit the hostile trolls in the back! The living trolls instantly turn their attention to the new, rotting ones and completely ignore the squishier targets. The fight is very mobile and quickly leaves the vicinity of the newer party, rampaging back toward whence they came!
It is a brutal display of savagery. Trolls are reckless fighters to begin with thanks to their regeneration and when they face each other the degrees of sheer brutality is shocking. One of undead looses an arm to the troll with the shield just as one of the living ones is literally disemboweled. Both continue on completely unhindered as the fight moves past the original party and into the hall.
**Combat over, proceed to introductory RP!**
The Chelaxian and the Elf both pant in exhaustion. What in the Hells just happened? the Chelaxian pants.
A clearly rotting man in fine clothes of some merchant variety peeks his head out from the hall where the trolls just exited and smiles. Yes, smiles! He waves.
Oh, those were just the Twins! They're quite the sight, don't you think?
Blink, blink. "Did that just happen? Did undead trolls just rescue us from living trolls? Gorum, grant me the strength to get through this crappy day without any more trials involving undead rescues. O, that reminds me...I owe Chet one..." as Harkon recalls where the crap monster slid off to. "Perhaps we should revisit our brief earlier encounter? Anyone?"
”Yes, they seem quite lively,” The Jester agrees. With his grin still plastered on his face he asks, ”and who might you be?”
Hopefully we have gone from the frying pan into the fire, he thinks as he watches the undead merchant.
He turns to Harkon, ”perhaps we should think before charging?
Zadira steps out of the shadows and says, smiling broadly
No worries, friends. We were on our way to help you and our undead allies got here first. They run a shop here. You should try it and stock up... and tell all your friends about it.
Bluff: 1d20 + 15 ⇒ (12) + 15 = 27
Vance's smile sits somewhere between "used car salesman" and "starving hunter" while also somehow managing to seem sincere. My name is Vance! As my friend Zadira has said, I run a shop here in the dungeon and those two who just drew away the Trolls are my security. You're welcome to stop by anytime!
They're mad. the Elf concludes. This place has stolen their sanity!
The gnome steps back when Zadira steps forward, ”and who might you be lass?” He peers around, ”and how many more of you are there?”
Sense Motive: 1d20 + 5 ⇒ (17) + 5 = 22
aid another, Poppet: 1d20 + 1 ⇒ (8) + 1 = 9
Perception: 1d20 + 13 ⇒ (9) + 13 = 22
He turns back to the macabre merchant, ”well ... thanks for the help and such .... I’m just not used to cavorting with the undead and such.... er .. anyway well met.” He almost extends his hand as he adds, ”I’m know as The Jester,” and points, ”this is my sidekick Poppet”
A few moments after the woman, a large shape steps into sight, but seems unwilling to close much further. It is a massive feline with long, pitch-black fur. Keen ears can make out the occasional *pling* of metal chains. The black panther is armored.
Atop it's back, a more humanoid figure is seated, although it too has strongly accented feline features - foremost the grey-white fur and long whiskers sprouting from his cheeks. The rider is wielding a short, curved blade and looks somewhat nervous in your direction.
Simon asks if the inevitable talk could not maybe be held in a place less horrible smelling.
A large half-orc lady with flaming red hair, shining plate mail, and a tusky smile steps out around the corner as well, somewhat out of breath. "Well met again in this dark and dingy dungeon! I am glad to see you have survived so far, it's a good thing the twins happened to be travelling with us to help out! Hopefully you took our earlier warnings to heart. These are the friends I told you about." She glowers a bit at the end of her greeting, but overall seems friendly.
To the Jester specifically she adds enthusiastically "Oh, it was lovely hearing you work! I also harness the power of words in battle, so many people underestimate the value of the right word at the right time."
Earlier conversation can be found on page 54, starting at 6th post down. Your knight also attacked one of the undead trolls previously (same page).
The Jester bows at Grelthe’s kind words, ”That’s what I’m always saying to Poppet words have value but he refuses to learn another language to increase his vocabulary.”
Poppet stands to his full height as he rebuts,”That ain’t so... I’m bilingual.” He shakes his head emphatically, ”I speak common and profanity”
Thank you, make sure you tip your waitress on the way out.
The gnome steps back when Zadira steps forward, ”and who might you be lass?” He peers around, ”and how many more of you are there?”
I'm Zadira, and there are several of us. She seems about to dismiss the new arrivals until she sees that Grelthe likes them, and then she smiles and with a nod to Simon and a quick glance at the eyeball in the pool of filth, she asks
Might we talk in a less repulsively scented environment? This way, please.
She then leads the way to a better place to talk.
Probably back the way we came... first safe room with adequate room for the group after the smell is gone?
As she walks ahead, you see a 16-foot long, 200 pound snake slide out of the shadows to accompany her.
The snake glances back at Poppet as though he were a tasty snack.
Zadira is a somewhat short, well-dressed, darkly handsome woman. She is generally a good person, but she has a smuggling background and a penchant for wealth. The only family she knows of would likely kill her on sight, and she doesn't have a lot of experience with friendship. She's kind of latched onto loyalty to Grelthe, and she has a fondness for some of the others in the group, but she's been a loner all her life, and is still trying to work out how the whole friendship/party thing works, so don't be phased if she doesn't really treat you like a friend at first. It'll take her a bit. (Plus, we were doing a mission that didn't include making friends with you, so she is a little confused.)
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Upon seeing the snake Poppet runs in a circle around the gnome yelling, "A sssssnNAAAAKE." After completing in three circuits he jumps into his satchel.
After a few seconds he cautiously peers out and asks, What do you call a funny snake?" He doesn't wait for an answer before he blurts out, "Hissssssterical."
Harkon listens and greets each of the party members in turn. He glances furtively between the party members speaking to him and the filth monster he refers to as "Chet". "It seems the better part of valor to hold a discussion with good people at a place of strength and safety." He glances one last time in the direction of the filth monster and says "I will be back for you Chet. We have a reckoning due between you and I." He motions the group on and quickly positions himself to make a quick evil check, just to be sure cause this IS the Dungeon of Graves and one can never be too careful. Assuming he gets no evil pings, Harkon will relax his stance in the party's presence. If someone pings, well...
He glances over his shoulder to see if the other two warriors of the group are following along, "You coming?" as if that is all that needs said. Without waiting for an answer, he turns and speaks with the new party, "My name is Dross, Harkon Dross. I am a Justiciar of my order, The Foundation*." As we arrive at the determined safe location, he asks, "What brings you all down here? Treasure seekers? Pleasure seekers? Are you on a mission from a god?"
*I just made that up, I did not research the holy orders of paladins, but I can play it off as something new considering my other talents
We're actually working for the dungeon itself. Not too bad so far, but don't go killing random creatures. It doesn't like that.
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Grelthe looks uncomfortable at Zadira's comment. "Well... we don't really know what that... apparition was. It never really identified itself." She looks back to the newcomers "However we each have our own reason for being here. Stamping out evil..." gestures to self, "recovering artifacts..." gestures to Kayla (if I can find her), "making our fortune..." gestures to Zadira. When she gets to the other half-orc and kitty-man, she pauses. "You know, I don't think we ever actually asked you what your interest in Rappan Athuk was. At the time we met we had.... more immediate concerns."
The catfolk who is riding on the black panther cooks his head to the right as if thinking back before answering the half-question of the half-ork.
"Huh, you are right, Grelthe-purrurr.
Sis and I came here to find out what evil is causing the spreading corruption of this place-grch.
It is seeping out if this place like pus from an infected wound, destroying the beautiful wilds of this island-meow."
He looks up at you.
"And ... I was mighty curious what is down here to be honest-mew.
Simon Blue-Eye is the name.
And this is my sister Emily Blackfur.
I think we should have come down here together from the start-meow.
Words simply cannot do this place justice after all."
"Working for the dungeon?" The Jester asks as he tries to figure out what this means.
Finally he concludes, "I've done some work for the place too by burying some of the lost souls who don't make it out."
He bends down and whispers something to Poppet, the two consult for several seconds and sheepishly asks, "You all sound like an experienced group, ...and Poppet and I have always wanted to work for a dungeon...." He looks down at his feet with his hands in his pockets and mumbles, "anyway we thought it would be a good idea to join forces with you and explore this place together."
What! What do you mean Join them! They're just down here to loot the place, like us! They're the competition! The chelaxian finally bursts. She huffs in indignation and crosses her arms.
You are being in a smallish room that is also the final test of an elven maiden so pure that her tomb wars the lesser of the evil monsters away and serves as one of the precious few safe havens in the area. You all fit, but only just. The elf looks very uncomfortable and keeps looking at Emily like she would make a good cloak.
The Chelaxian lady, who has yet to say her name, looks like she's been betrayed.
None of the current party pings as evil.
The Jester bowed to the Chelaxian Lady, ”If you haven’t noticed we haven’t been faring so well on our own.” He clears his throat and rubs his hands together, ”Its like they say two heads are better than one.”
You should join us too says Zadira to the Chelaxian. More people, more power. We could get an awful lot of loot.
She looks at Grelthe.
I mean, within the guidelines, of course.
Harkon speaks to the Chelaxian, "You know, I have heard just about enough of your incessant whining. This group appears more than capable and their hearts are pure as well as their motivations. Even the one that wishes to loot this place at least admits her desires, you on the other hand consider truth to be somewhat more...malleable. I believe the time has come for a change in companions."
To the new team, "My lord Gorum respects those with the strength to achieve their goals. While I have no real desire to 'loot' this place, I see no reason not to use the tools we rescue from the evil beings within to use in our individual causes. I personally relish the chance to destroy the undead that infest this location as well as their creators and, of course, the occasional evil being, such as demons and devils. I am quite capable despite my misfortune with Chet back there."