Duboris's "A Dirge For Everything"

Game Master Duboris

Chapter 1: Rebirth and a Song
- The players awake to a new way of life, and the comfort of... a Dirge. The Adventure Begins


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There were... Whispers. Hushed tones, melodramatic voices. "I don't want to go!" some of them... some of them screamed. It was silent and loud, sometimes too loud. Confusion encircled pure consciousness.

The woman seized up, suddenly, vomiting an atrocity that made the onlookers wince, and some to look away in terror. It happened, and whatever it was, it was certainly part of her. It was a... remarkable thing. It was black, and putrid, to say the least. Writhing on the floor, connected by disproportional bits of black flesh, a dark hand with white finger nails.

The hand seemed to fade in and out of existence, defying common sense. It flicked a finger, suddenly, raising up from the collapsed body of the woman who'd sought it out. She drooled, flat on the floor, her lower face being the only visible portion of her head through the bandages.

The hand flexed and everyone knew that it was close. Everyone knew that this was the moment where newcomers would arrive to be useful or useless. Heroes or casual conversation. Loved, or shunned. Whichever it is, they would simply "be".

The hand lurched, breaking through the recently made runes like some kind of fish tank. The souls fled, unconscious, but aware. This was unnatural! A physical and metaphysical being. Something that existed as incorporeal and corporeal, something... Wrong... yet necessary.

5 were picked this time, a... healthy amount, to say the least. Usually it was merely one, or two, but... never five. The hand lurched! A great grasp, plucking them from the sphere. The soul's tails hanged from the hands, attempting to flee feverishly. They hadn't been separated long enough to gain understanding of their surroundings, merely reduced to wandering ethereal instinct.

Capable of doing nothing, the hand pulsed, pulling the souls into it's clutch, taking the nights and then- snuffing them out. In it's grasp, it squeezed with all of it's might.

The arm began to fade, but it's job had been done. The souls had been pulverized, simply a strange white levitating dust in it's palm. As it ceased to exist, it flailed towards the rune-covered floor, throwing the remains.

No sound was heard as the matter hit the wall of force en-laden into the opening. The arm writhed one final time, inaudibly, as it winked out of reality, gone once more. The remaining souls fled as the runes collapsed, to head to Pharasma's boneyard and their respective afterlives, free at last.

On the floor laid 5 separated pinnacles of existence, 5 lights. The remains of a broken soul, surrounded in it's own essence and incapable of flight.

From the upper part of the room, a cold and dark, hollow cylinder with masterfully carved stone walls, came... something...

... and then it started. The music, a piano. Sad, though... hopeful. Miserable, really, it started and came from the upper regions of the tall, tall tower.

Small white "essence", the only word anyone could really find to explain it physically, trickled from the roof. Marginally white, it fell slowly, sprinkling the remains where they lay. It danced whimsically around the onlookers, whom now were getting up and walking away to their respective areas. A man sat on the stairs, watching particularly close, still interested.

"Who is it this time... by the graces, don't be anyone I know." His voice rusty, and a bit melancholy.

Slowly but surely, the features became clearer and less transparent. He heaved a sigh of relief, not recognizing anyone, but still didn't envy them. How could he? He was already here...

... ...Here in the Nexus.

In a haze, the first of the party members wake up. It's gentle, though, odd, to say the least.

Bromen Spellbane:

Your blood ran cold as you opened your eyes. A high-hanging roof, and a brilliant chandelier that slowly but surely became less hazy. The light was brightest at it, but it was cold... very cold. Your head, weak, rolled to the left to see the body of another person and, even stranger, the land beneath you wasn't there. Suspended, you'd seen nothing like it.

Your hearing suddenly returned and the first thing you heard as you gained the ability to move slightly is;

"~ey. Hey! Wake up, c'mon now. Dam she's a mess... It wasn't a comforting voice, but he wasn't in a hurry or anything.

Your eyes suddenly flicker back to reality and your vision returns entirely to see a man directly above you, sitting on the side of the stairs.

"Yeah, that's it, listen. I wouldn't recommend trying to move too quick, you might fall apart, well, not that you can... Just give it a minute."

A quick assessment of your body reveals the inability to feel your hands or legs.

Just as soon as you realize this a man appears from nowhere in a white cloud, leaping to his feet and fleeing at full speed toward the other side of the room toward a wall with his eyes closed.

Bannon:

The demon's claws and fangs pierced your shields with remarkable ease, and then again, and then again. The creature squealed in victory as it left you, bleeding on the ground and conscious waning, to find another.

Unable to speak with your lungs punctured and throat ripped out, you slowly trickled into the one thing you always hoped to avoid. Death. It was slow and cold, but eventually, it went numb and then... nothing.

Your eyes flickered open, hazy, noticing the brilliant chandelier far, far away. It seemed to hang lightly as white essence danced around it. Your eyesight returned to normal shortly, though, you couldn't speak. It's a bit of a blur, of course, until a sharp pain runs through you and you yell out in pain, signaling your ability to speak once more.

Eyes darting around the room, you see a man roughly 10 feet away talking to someone? You're not sure, you can't see who it is for a short, red-haired well-armored woman. Your head resets itself, intensively weak. After a quick assessment you realize you can actually move your arms and legs, which considering your recent encounter, isn't all that bad.

On the other side of you a man's eyes are filled with blood as he stands back up, head wound-healing at unbelievable pace, he stands up and flees screaming towards the other end of the room.

Tera Flinders:

Slinking against the wall, you're happy. Leaning against the wall is both comforting and incredibly painful as a Schir's halberd is rammed through your torso and the entire left portion of your abdomen is in something dead's stomach. In the haze, they left you for dead, but you're certain that 2 of the creatures that assaulted you are dead.

Kind of like you.

There were no pearly gates in your final moments, and there were no life flashbacks, nor pain. It just simply sort of... faded to black.

opening your eyes you see a chandelier, though, only out of 1 eye. You're not sure about the condition of the other one, but opening it is completely out of the question.

Attempting to move, you can't hear anything at all, and to make matters worse, only 1 leg and arm are accessible, both on the same side. Feeling of your chest, you feel a vacancy made by the recent halberd, but no pain. You hear nothing at the moment, and touching your ears reveals them to be what you're certain is bone, though, skin is slowly covering it again and you have absolutely no idea what's going on.

Though weak, you're capable of talking, and the wound on your side seems to have healed entirely.

Roman Tsarko:

The death from the seeker was... unpleasant. The axe-head didn't completely kill you, but, that wasn't the worst of it. As you laid there with your grin, it's lecherous right hand reached down and covered your face and the awful, awful pain of the fingers snaking into your mouth and eye sockets was... unsavory to say the least. Suddenly with a snap, you nearly shove your arms down, blinded.

Though the pain is immediately over, the fear of that experience is fresh on your mind and you've stood back up and ran a good 15 feet, fortunately not running into anything.

Hana Miyahara:

The cold never had time to sink in as you're conscience faded out of existence. A cold numb, and a short glimpse of the dragon flying away as you suffocated and died a truly miserable death are all you know, but, for some reason, your eyes open slowly to the sight of a chandelier.

The vision is hazy, and you hear a man talking to someone, though you're too rigid to turn your head.

Your eyes, just as soon as they'd been hazy, became clear and your body warms slowly, though you're still shivering. Looking up you see a man stand up, screaming, as he runs off into the distance. The sight is certainly scary, to say the least, as you're incapable of moving and he'd had blood in his eyes and forehead.

You have no physical ability to move your legs, but your arms have thawed out rather fine and your eyesight slowly unblurs, giving you a clear look of your surroundings.


Male Human Wizard 3, +5 Initiative, +6 Perception, AC 11 / Touch AC 11 / Flat Footed AC10, Saves F+2/ R +w / W +6 HP:19/19

"A red haired woman?

It took a second, but this was indeed something. Though seemingly whole, his head ached, for the memory of his assailant flashed before his eyes. Shuddering for an instant, the Wizard slowly rises catching site of a red haired armored woman.

He had paused for a moment, his impressive intellect bouncing around at idea.

"Couldn't hurt to ask..." Coughing slightly to gain the armored woman, Bancroft Gainsborough tried his hand at common, to establish a connection.

"Say...why greetings there! Stave your hesitation my dear, for I am Bannon, a wizard and scholar. Pray to me, this is no ways Pharasma's Boneyard?" He said while looking around, talking with his hands. "What...is any of this?"

The wizard clumsily asked his question like a newfound traveler, playing upon his diminutive state. "Armors an indication of war...or martial progress. She's got to know atleast something.

Cornelius fluttered by, ever so cooing slightly. Finding his place upon the older man's shoulders, it took upon an indignant look.

"Ah, glad to have you back..friend." Bancroft showed glee upon the sight of his familiar.


Female Human Arcanist 3/Inquisitor 1 | Hero Points: 1/3 | HP: 19/19, NL: 0 | AC 14/13/11, Cold Resistance 1 | F+4 R +5 W+8 | Per: +10 | Init: +3 | Bolts: 4, Arrows: 14, Shocking Grasp: 21, Silent Image: 5, Magic Missile: 15
Spells and Abilities:
Arcanist Spells - 1st: 1/5 | Inquisitor Spells - 1st: 1/2 | Arcane Reservoir: 4/6, Judgments: 1/1

Everything was fuzzy at first, She remembered scraps and bits of what had happened, but it was an indistinct, painful, blur.

Then the memory of that last fiend's weapon tearing into her brought all of that pain back into sharp focus. The wounds had healed, seemingly, but the pain was not an easy thing to forget. Every cut, tear, and shattered bone was brought back without the merciful dulling that happens in the heat of the moment.

"GRAAAAAAHAHAAH!"

She managed to get the screaming under control after a moment, but the sobs of pain came through her gritting teeth as she rolled on her side, trying to ease the pain anyway she could. Her stomach heaved in protest. Everything seemed to spin. Then the pain was gone, just a distant memory, her empty stomach stopped trying to vacate its non-existent contents. Soon the only reminder of the ordeal was the tears streaming down her face.

"Painfully waking up in the Boneyard. Add that to the list of things they need to teach the fresh recruits..."

As soon as the room stops spinning she tries to get on her feet.


M Dwarf Fighter 6 / inquisitor 3 | HP 88/88 | AC:23, T:15, F:19 | CMD:25, CMB:+11 | Save (F+11, R+7, W+6) | Init:+6 | Perc: +13 , DV 60'

Thank Torag, I survived. Wait, how? Can't remember how....

Did I?

The dwarf tries to focus his attention on the man by the stairs. "Where is this? Did ye save me from the dragon? And why can't I move m'legs?"

His eyes widen again at the sight of the man running headlong toward the wall. He glances back toward the stair, trying to so how the first man reacts to the newcomer's appearance and actions.


The man is human, wearing a full suit of chainmail with a longsword at his side and a shield on his back, though, you can't see much else about him. He seems stout, with brown hair and slightly dark rings underneath his eyes, however it doesn't seem as though their from sleep deprivation.

"This is the nexus, and, it would seem that man had a rather gruesome death. The man looks down at what appear to be your legs. Mostly because you guys are still being formed. The Aether hasn't had time to completely constitute the lot of you, and, from the looks of it... He grimmaces and raises an eyebrow. ...something snapped your knees like twigs.

Tera Flinders:

The pain subsides right about as soon as your hearing returns, though the soreness is still there and slowly fading. Your left eye finally comes back to light, and just in time, as a man to your right with a gray beard and robes, along with an owl, is supporting himself on his arms. It comes back just in time for you to here;

"-is any of this?" you hear the rest normally.

As you look at him, the first thing you notice is that his intestines are slowly curling back into him and healing rather quickly as the blood steams away and fully recovers. He doesn't seem to be aware of it and is staring at you after talking to his owl.

Taking this into account, your chest wound has fully healed. You also hear the man screaming as he runs towards the end of the hallway.

Bromen Spellbane:

As soon as he says the word "twigs" your knees immediately snap back to their respective directions, though with no pain. You still see it happen however as the white mist starts to disappear that's apparently "aiding" them in this process.

You're walking ability returns, and you feel completely rejuvenated after a couple more seconds.
(Congratulations, you're the first full functioning member of the PC's.)


M Dwarf Fighter 6 / inquisitor 3 | HP 88/88 | AC:23, T:15, F:19 | CMD:25, CMB:+11 | Save (F+11, R+7, W+6) | Init:+6 | Perc: +13 , DV 60'

Slowly, almost gingerly, Bromen rolls onto his side and pushes himself to his feet. He puts his arms out and takes a step, as if his lack of balance came from some strong dwarven stout instead of his legs being......completely constituted. Seeing that his legs were in fact working again, the dwarf looks down at himself and pats his gear to confirm it is all there. His face visibly relaxes as his hand touches the ancient chain-flail at his waist.

"So I didn't escape, I died?" He looks around again, trying to take it all in at once. "Name's Bromen, son of Aralak, of clan Vrektel." Growing more confident, he rolls his shoulders and twists his head to the left with a loud popping sound. "Was it yer magic that brought me back? Not sure I can repay ye, stranger, but I'm grateful."

His attention is drawn back to the armored man. "Is he.....con-sti-tutin'......also? How do we help him??"


Female Human Arcanist 3/Inquisitor 1 | Hero Points: 1/3 | HP: 19/19, NL: 0 | AC 14/13/11, Cold Resistance 1 | F+4 R +5 W+8 | Per: +10 | Init: +3 | Bolts: 4, Arrows: 14, Shocking Grasp: 21, Silent Image: 5, Magic Missile: 15
Spells and Abilities:
Arcanist Spells - 1st: 1/5 | Inquisitor Spells - 1st: 1/2 | Arcane Reservoir: 4/6, Judgments: 1/1

She hears Bannon's words, or the last few at least. Her mind is still cloudy, but somethings begin to fall into to place.

"Did your guts just curl back into your stomach?"

The fact that everyone seems to be recovering from some really bad injuries not among them.


The man swings his legs, jumping off the staircase and dusts himself off a bit. "Every time that lady does this, I feel like that stuff is always on me. He shrugged. "To be frank, none of you escaped anything. The only way in here is to die, and, from the looks of you guys as you came in, you certainly met that requirement.

So yeah, welcome to the Nexus... You're stuck here, just like the rest of us.

"As for saving you, no, I didn't. While some would disagree, this place isn't exactly a blessing." He sounded rather melancholy. Looking over at the man that had ran off; "As for him, he didn't seem to have eyes when he came back, but his body was fine, so he could move properly. I'm sure he'll come to.

I'm sure you've all got plenty of questions... He shook his head in disappointment. "I'm afraid I have answers. My name is Bagrin, and as much as I hate it, I'm a bit of a veteran around here.

As Bagrin talks, and the man disappears around the nearby pass into another room, the sound of a piano echos throughout the room. It's a lovely sound, though, a little morbid and sad.

"Bastard always does play the most fitting music..."

Bannon:

Upon investigating you're innards are, indeed, slurping back into you. When you look down the wound immediately seals as it finishes the process. It's a bit sore to the touch, and you can still feel your insides shifting around.

Roman Tsarko:

In your ridiculous amount of fear, your eyes immediately come to, just in time for you to see a man hammering wood and metal together, a smith, and then you didn't see him. You then bump directly into a wall, and a man curses at you.

Laying down and regathering your thoughts, you feel your head ache, as well as your eyes. The same man re-materializes nearby, a dwarf, short, though obviously a man with a strong arm.

"Blast it man! Damned fool! Daft bastard! Get up and move, what kind of fool are you!? If I could beat you to death I would!

Looking up from the ground, particles of brown and silver are spinning vigorously around you, and you have no idea what they are. You just know you have a headache.


hp 28/28, grit 2/3 Male Human Gunslinger 1 / Fighter 2

Adrenaline and fear pumping in his veins, Roman swings a punch at the dwarf. Unfortunately he sees three of them - he goes for the middle one, but still misses by a good arm’s length.
«What the… who… aaargh!» squeezing his eyes to regain lucidity, Roman looks around, fearing to see the familiar architecture of the Black Prison.

“Fool” and “bastard” are the first words he hears. No doubt about it he thinks always been a bit of a bastard, and I guess only a fool would go into that hellhole with no one draggin’ him…

And yet… this does not seem like a mind game of the seekers. He runs his hand along his face, then his body, trying to feel the wounds that just a second ago ached so painfully. «What the hell happened?» Roman asks the dwarf.


Female Human Arcanist 3/Inquisitor 1 | Hero Points: 1/3 | HP: 19/19, NL: 0 | AC 14/13/11, Cold Resistance 1 | F+4 R +5 W+8 | Per: +10 | Init: +3 | Bolts: 4, Arrows: 14, Shocking Grasp: 21, Silent Image: 5, Magic Missile: 15
Spells and Abilities:
Arcanist Spells - 1st: 1/5 | Inquisitor Spells - 1st: 1/2 | Arcane Reservoir: 4/6, Judgments: 1/1

Click

"So we all died, and are being brought back? Why?"

Sczarni

Female Kitsune Bard 3; AC 17, 13 touch 14 flat-footed; HP 21/21, Fort +2, Ref +6, Will +4; +5 Initiative, +6 Perception

The first thing she did was to reflexively make sure she was in her human skin.

The second thing was to lay there, awkward and half-frozen, her entire body aching over in throbbing, numb pain, listening to people talk about how they had ... died?

At least someone was playing a fitting song. She'd forgotten her black dress for the funeral.

Hana looks over everyone in the room and considers fleeing immediately. She pulls herself onto an elbow, raising her body and then begins to cough-- terribly so, a racking feeling that splits her shoulders and chest. Frozen on the inside. She couldn't turn or roll her head, and her skin felt like it was about to split to let the skeleton inside burst free, unchained by the ice.

She tried to move her legs but found them entirely unresponsive. When she looked, she knew-- they'd taken her shoes, had they? Her toes didn't respond. She was crippled? Where were the tell-tale pins and needles to assure her?

Coughing again, Hana speaks, in a raw, throaty voice that surprises herself-- nothing like her soft, melodic, airy singer's voice. "I'm not dead," she interjects.


Female Human Arcanist 3/Inquisitor 1 | Hero Points: 1/3 | HP: 19/19, NL: 0 | AC 14/13/11, Cold Resistance 1 | F+4 R +5 W+8 | Per: +10 | Init: +3 | Bolts: 4, Arrows: 14, Shocking Grasp: 21, Silent Image: 5, Magic Missile: 15
Spells and Abilities:
Arcanist Spells - 1st: 1/5 | Inquisitor Spells - 1st: 1/2 | Arcane Reservoir: 4/6, Judgments: 1/1

"Not now, anyway."

Her mind is significantly clearer, and suspicion is creeping in. She falls within herself, and reaches out with her senses, looking for the telling signs she'd been taught to hunt, and extinguish.

Detect evil, sweeping the room, focusing on any sources she finds.


Roman:

What do ya mean wha' 'appened? Look I'll explain right as soon as ya get the hell out of me 'quipment! The dwarf was rather frustrated, and wasn't offering any help at all to you with the standing up, despite he was so bent on having you do so. "Me stuff can't reconstitute if'n ya don't move! Ack... Damned new arrivals. You're just as bad as that bastard Rodrick."

Hana:

A few seconds after you become self-aware, a warmth spreads over you and you regain the ability to move, and see clearly.

Bagrin paces back and forth between the 2 staircases within 20 feet of each other, not really worried about the fact that he might get too far away.

"Same reason as we did. Far as I can tell we were all specifically hand picked to stave off this mist, but, no need to worry about that for the moment. You've just arrived.

As I mentioned before, this is the Nexus, a... rather morbid place. There's a good lot of pretty astounding people here, and you'll eventually meet the rest of them, but... He stopped pacing directly in front of the group and shook his head with a sigh. "This is gonna take a while.

With that, Bagrin walked back a bit and stood against the wall, still within earshot. "That one guy apparently stopped screaming, but he apparently ran right into Arcus. Don't say I envy him. You could hear him give a slight chuckle. "Anyways, the first and most impor-" He stops as he sees Tera do her detection. Bagrin was apparently adept at spellcraft and was trying to figure out exactly what she was doing. "You're not going to be happy about that.

Tera Flinders:

Round 1: There is evil present
Round 2: There are 2 Auras, but when you seek them out, the power of the more potent one is overwhelming for you, and the room goes hazy for about 6 seconds. Stunned

Tera noticably jolts in place as she recoils from whatever it is she was doing.

"Like I said. Nexus is made up of plenty of astounding people, but... not all of them are nice people." He shook his head and looked up in a specific direction.

"So, to answer all the simple questions; Yes you died. You just got completely healed. You are not undead. You're not technically alive, but you may as well be. There's plenty of nice people here, and a few bad eggs. You're here to stave off the mists, though, we've been at this for months with no progress... Months." He looks down at the floor again with his eyes closed. "Months..."

"I can answer any other questions, but, the biggest thing for you guys to figure out right now is "Aether". I'd suggest talking to the local wizard, Marco, for that. A pretty swell lad, if I do say so myself. A bit short on tools, though." He points toward the area where the other man ran off to.

"Option B is reckless Abandon, and going up the stairs. See if ya can't meet me back here in a couple of minutes, I'll see if I can't send ya on an errand. Then again, everyone's probably got one." He looks over at Tera. "You, the red haired one. That was you detecting evil, right? Paladin? I suggest waiting before you look into what you found. His name's Oswald. You couldn't touch him if you wanted to, and I mean that literally. Marco will can tell you all about it, he's short, black haired, and... in a word, too happy."


M Dwarf Fighter 6 / inquisitor 3 | HP 88/88 | AC:23, T:15, F:19 | CMD:25, CMB:+11 | Save (F+11, R+7, W+6) | Init:+6 | Perc: +13 , DV 60'

Bromen continues to look around the room as more figures begin to stand up and move around. Torag's blessed codpiece, more dy-keenies, and an elf? Maybe this IS hell...

He is about to ask another question as Bagrin starts speaking. He shakes his head, chiding himself. Yer nattering like a gnome, shut up and listen! He crosses his arms across his chest as if holding the questions in and listens.

The dwarf snorts as their options are laid out. "Wizard? Is he one of yer 'bad eggs'? I'd almost rather the stairs."

Sczarni

Female Kitsune Bard 3; AC 17, 13 touch 14 flat-footed; HP 21/21, Fort +2, Ref +6, Will +4; +5 Initiative, +6 Perception

Hana fought to regain her footing, but then found it very suddenly and easily. She straightened her clothing and hair, listening to Bagrin speak. "What is this place? You're talking like we should know what you mean, but all I hear is confusion." Her voice was still recovering, but was taking on its old demeanor quickly.

"We're not alive, only technically, we're not dead-- interesting. Why? 'Stave off the mists'... how? Is this what hell is like? I'd expected more fire and devils, and to be honest, less paladins," she said, and gave Tera a prying look.

She looks off to where the screaming man had run and grimaces. Like she'd want to go after him. But, well, if everyone else did, what choice did she have? Not like she was going to stay here with this person. He could be lying right now-- he could just be a necromancer.

Sense Motive for a hunch!: 1d20 + 8 ⇒ (13) + 8 = 21 You'll find I will do this occasionally to try to get a little bit more of the 'big picture' for my character. Reveal any hidden subtexts, subtle clues or really anything interesting you think of. I'll only do this when I think the character needs a bit more info to go on to begin to make any decisions.


Female Human Arcanist 3/Inquisitor 1 | Hero Points: 1/3 | HP: 19/19, NL: 0 | AC 14/13/11, Cold Resistance 1 | F+4 R +5 W+8 | Per: +10 | Init: +3 | Bolts: 4, Arrows: 14, Shocking Grasp: 21, Silent Image: 5, Magic Missile: 15
Spells and Abilities:
Arcanist Spells - 1st: 1/5 | Inquisitor Spells - 1st: 1/2 | Arcane Reservoir: 4/6, Judgments: 1/1

Tera slides down the wall, clutching her head.

"Th-that was horrible."

She sits there trying to forget the sickening feeling in her stomach, until Bagrin addresses her. She looks up at the man, obviously shaken by the experience.

"Yes, I am, or was, a Paladin of Iomedae in Nibreltar. Last thing I remember is getting cornered in an alley after trying to buy my friends some time to hide."

She goes quiet after that. Grief, guilt, and despair bows her shoulders.


Bagrin gives a hearty quick, though, obviously forced laugh at the idea of Marco being a bad egg. "The man's about the friendliest person here. You want a bad egg, talk to Oswald, he's in the farthest section of the place, usually. I'll have you know the nicer people outnumber the worse people here, fortunately."

Bagrin takes a moment, scratching his head. "Marco's a transmuter with a knack for making things, really. He's not big on combat, so we typically get his things for him. The pay's good, and he's got Aether to lend."

He looks over to address Hana. "This place isn't really great, at least, not for me. I would've preferred the bone yard, but, you do what you're offered, right? Right... Again with the melancholy trail-off.

Like I said before, all your best answers will come from Marco, but, from what I can tell you for certain is simply "Aether." You're made from it, right now, in fact. He looks down at the keeper, whom's still unconscious on the floor, though alive.

"Her name's Lilith, but the poor girl defies common sense some of the time. I don't wanna talk about what kind of ritual she does to call people like you here on their way to Pharasma's yard, but, it's... something." He grimaced.

As Tera shows discomfort and explains her circumstances, Bagrin just sort of grimaces, not seeming to have the words for comfort. He looks back to Hana; "Pushing the mist back is possible, but we don't have much to go on. Closest thing we know to being useful is that Aether is certainly involved, and the rulers of each remaining providence have a hand in it as well, whether they know it or not.

He sounded rather bermused at having to mention that, like he was unsatisfied.

Hana Miyahara:

While Bagrin is one of the most melancholy people you've managed to ever meet, he's still apparently telling the truth. You do, however, get a sense that he's rather "empty", as if he doesn't enjoy the nexus. He seems, in a phrase, "Defeated" but, he's apparently trying to hide it.


Male Human Wizard 3, +5 Initiative, +6 Perception, AC 11 / Touch AC 11 / Flat Footed AC10, Saves F+2/ R +w / W +6 HP:19/19

So much was happening now. Before him stood a dwarf who wandered too far from his forge, a red haired woman that slightly reminded himself of his daughter and several others who were all trying to make sense of the matter.

For the majority of the conversation Bannon had remained silent, allowing the others to take their share before contributing his own. Though, his pensive nature peaked when he heard the mention of another wizard.

Brushing his robes to the side, he took on the air of a scholar and approached the man who was refered to as, Bagrin.

"My good man, it is rather pleasant news...despite all this...melancholy to learn of another wizard within...this strange place. A transmuter...atleast I'll have someone to share my thoughts with. Pray tell me sir, where is this Wizard?"

Cornelius hooted above, noting his master's glee.

When there's a wizard, there's bound to be knowledge and information I can share. And at best, someone whom I can relate to.


Bagrin looked at him and raised an eyebrow, then pointed a finger toward the other side of the room where the armored man had ran off to. "Just in there, it's where the craftsman are. Mind you, none of them like each other, but, they're still fine craftsmen."

"Marco's the Apothecary and magical craftsman. Arcus is the Blacksmith, and though he's a bit rude and brash, he's still one of the best Hazrit had. Finelia is an elf from Agristrad, and much to his dismay, makes bows better than the dwarf ever fathomed, as well as makes the jewelry for some of Marco's magical creations."

He looked back at Tera over Bannon's shoulder, and then threw a glance at Hana. "If you're looking for more casual conversation, I suggest the stairs. Rydell and Anastasia are pleasant company and are literally always together. I envy them, really. He sighed. Other than that, there's... Rodrick. My advice, keep your wits about you with him. Man's crafty. There's plenty of other people around, but, I doubt you want me to sit here and tell all the names now, eh? He chuckled, though, forced it out again. It was kind of pitiful how much he tried to laugh.

Bagrin slumped down against the wall much like Tera did, though, he didn't seem as defeated. "You guys've got a lot to learn. I don't envy you."


Male Human Wizard 3, +5 Initiative, +6 Perception, AC 11 / Touch AC 11 / Flat Footed AC10, Saves F+2/ R +w / W +6 HP:19/19

Hm...Marco could prove to a good ally...never the less, a man of my mind I must see.

Peering down the hall where the armored man had run towards, Bannon offered a slight nod and trotted along.

If there's anyway to understand...well anything...I can hopefully consort a well educated man, for no mere person can learn magic like a wizard

Bancroft searched the new room for what appeared to be the Transmuter's shop.


M Dwarf Fighter 6 / inquisitor 3 | HP 88/88 | AC:23, T:15, F:19 | CMD:25, CMB:+11 | Save (F+11, R+7, W+6) | Init:+6 | Perc: +13 , DV 60'

Bromen's fists clenched as the wizard began speaking, decades of training kicking in as he quickly assesses the human. It takes an effort to keep his hands from drifting to his weapons but he manages it.

He can feel the tension leave his body as Bagrin mentions Arcus. Not just a dwarf, but a smith from home. Finally, some sense!

Without waiting to hear more, the dwarf heads off toward the craftsmen as well.

No ranks in history, but any chance Bromen has heard of Arcus?


Female Human Arcanist 3/Inquisitor 1 | Hero Points: 1/3 | HP: 19/19, NL: 0 | AC 14/13/11, Cold Resistance 1 | F+4 R +5 W+8 | Per: +10 | Init: +3 | Bolts: 4, Arrows: 14, Shocking Grasp: 21, Silent Image: 5, Magic Missile: 15
Spells and Abilities:
Arcanist Spells - 1st: 1/5 | Inquisitor Spells - 1st: 1/2 | Arcane Reservoir: 4/6, Judgments: 1/1

Tera gets back on her feet. She takes a step towards Bagrin, but thinks better of it and walks towards the girl instead. She leans over her, seeing if there's anything she can do.

Heal: 1d20 + 7 ⇒ (8) + 7 = 15

"So why us? Why were we chosen and others not?"


Bannon and Bromen:

Looking around the shop, there's a few things of note in the room.

Immediately in front of you as you turn the corner is a man with a rather large nose and no hair sitting on a bench, polishing a gold band. Directly behind him are 2 rather well-looking long-swords, obviously masterfully crafted, and some form of exotic weapon, sickle-like, a Shotel. Directly beneath the Shotel is a rather jagged dagger made of a strange, pink crystal. The material's name escapes you.

The man is most certainly not a dwarf, but he seems to pay you no mind as he polishes and cleans his various items. In his hands is the band mentioned prior, made of what appears to be solid emerald.

Dotted around him are plenty of boxes sporting plenty of golden mis-matched trinkets, all of which are well-kept.

Still standing where you are, to your right, is the dwarf mentioned prior, who seems to be grumbling and cursing under his breath. Curiously, in the corner is the man from earlier whom's eyes have finally returned to him, trying to stand back up.

All around him are dark brown and silver particles, dancing wildly, and apparently trying to center on where he was standing. To his left the particles seems to be trying to create what you believe are tools, but the exact explanation is alien.

Even farther along the room, you can see another sort of set-up with tools laid out, apparently the elf. Somewhat hidden. Finally nearest to you, surprisingly, is the obvious apothecary Marco, a squat, gray-haired human being feverishly working with potions. He seems to be darting about, writing things down with a quill, as well as jotting down notes in what your certain is a spellbook.

A rather large dragon-like creature sits on his shoulders all the while, grabbing at ingredients and jotting down it's own notes. It seems rather agile, and apparently doesn't weigh much, but you don't know what kind of creature it is.

That was a lot for just one spoiler.

Tera:
Looking down at hana and attempting to place your hand on her, it immediately de-materializes, though as you recoil from the surprise it reconstitutes. Odd. That being said, your heal check reveals that she is healing at an intensely rapid rate, and that she'll most likely be fine in just a few more seconds, much like the rest of you.

As everyone walks out, Bagrin watches them leave, though, Tera decides to stay. Bagrin extends a hand, though more to conversate than asking for help up. "You know, I've wondered the same question since my first day here. I'm not really sure I can answer that, but, I feel like we're all we've got left. I don't know, to be honest, and I can't give you an answer to that question. No one can, really. This had been the saddest Bagrin had sounded since you'd arrived.

Bromen:

Arcus's name was mentioned in rumors as being one of the best dwarven smiths to ever grace Hazrit. What he lacked in the ability to kill the deceased neighboring orc and dragons, he made up for in making sure that everyone else could cut through them like butter.

Exact details on his death are few, and the one's you've heard, you can't remember.

It is completely safe to say you've definitely heard of him though. He was a revered smith.


M Dwarf Fighter 6 / inquisitor 3 | HP 88/88 | AC:23, T:15, F:19 | CMD:25, CMB:+11 | Save (F+11, R+7, W+6) | Init:+6 | Perc: +13 , DV 60'

Without hesitation Bromen moves to the right, ignoring the armored man with the new-found eyes and bowing his head respectfully to the smith.

"Krusa, Forgemaster. Es esmu pagodināts, jūsu vārds ir leģenda Hazrit. Es esmu Bromen, dēls Aralak, no klana Vrektel." He pauses a moment, a note of what might be embarrassment in his voice when he continues. "Es esmu ....... bija ............ dienā man bija piedzimis, Oracles nosauca man..... Spellbane."

Another pause, this time his voice strengthens when he continues. "Ir patīkami redzēt, bārdains sejas!"

Dwarven:
"Hail, Forgemaster. I am honored, your name is legend in Hazrit. I am Bromen, son of Aralak, of clan Vrektel.

"I am.......was............the day I was born, the Oracles named me..... the Spellbane."

"It is good to see a bearded face! "


Female Human Arcanist 3/Inquisitor 1 | Hero Points: 1/3 | HP: 19/19, NL: 0 | AC 14/13/11, Cold Resistance 1 | F+4 R +5 W+8 | Per: +10 | Init: +3 | Bolts: 4, Arrows: 14, Shocking Grasp: 21, Silent Image: 5, Magic Missile: 15
Spells and Abilities:
Arcanist Spells - 1st: 1/5 | Inquisitor Spells - 1st: 1/2 | Arcane Reservoir: 4/6, Judgments: 1/1

Whoops, I meant to go to Lilth, but that's fine.

Tera stares at her hand for a moment, shocked at what happened, but at least it made the earlier statement from Bagrin much clearer. She looks up when the man begins to speak. The sadness weighs on her, adding the hopeless she felt.

Never lose hope.

She walks over to Lilith, checking her as well.

Heal: 1d20 + 7 ⇒ (15) + 7 = 22

"When the Nibreltar was overrun, I was labeled a coward. I would run if there was no one to protect. I struck from the shadows. I did everything I could to keep the people around me and myself alive."

She stands up. Her eyes flash, and red fire cascades down her hair.

"Those that called me a coward died. Butchered like cattle when they shouted their challenges from the tops of piles of rubble. I protected the innocent by doing what I could, and in the end I was one of the last paladins left alive."

She sighs, her voice level and calm as before, but the full weight of her presence was behind her words now.

"If there isn't an answer, or no one knows it, fine. I'm here. As long as there's people to save I'll fight. I'll do whatever I can to save them. As long as they live, I have hope that we will find a way to fix this. Find a way to set things right. Never lose hope Bagrin. Never give up."


Bromen and Bannon:

The Dwarf turns to look at the both of you, much more interested in the dwarf as his eyes light up and his brow immediately unfurls itself as they rise.

"Comrade! Nofastu Sig Mihal! Finally, another Dwarf in the Nexus! Oh thank the gods, someone to talk to that actually has something to talk about that isn't green and weak! M'os ki isrit tonu mag er boos er hish lofo ergrigi to collese migrita."

Dwarven:

"It's about time!"

"I'll be right with you as soon as this fool manages to collect himself."

Tera Flinders and Hana:

Bagrin raises a brow as Tera's hair, a little surprised, but, it's nothing in this new crazy world he hasn't seen before. As she starts to preach her ideals, he gets a bit of a smile. "Yeah that's certainly one way to approach it, but I don't have that much resolve, fair lady. The world isn't as simple as it used to be, and damn if it wasn't simple then. I'll keep those words on my mind, but, I think you've got a few things to look into, no? Good luck with your travels." He walks off, mumbling some words to himself.

He starts to go up the stairs close to where you both were originally. Looking up and seeing where he'd potentially go, the stairs in this place are rather complex and obviously held up via magic, as they wouldn't support themselves otherwise. There seem to be 3 more floors, just by looking up, the highest floor's bottom with a giant chandelier of sorts.

As Bagrin gets halfway up the stairs the sound of the piano, seemingly taking a backseat to the stressful situation, immediately comes back into sound. It's... sad, but, it's definitely being played by someone more than capable.

As for the Keeper, she's suffering from massive amounts of exhaustion, but any attempts to physically aid her via touch are merely met with the same disentegration effect as earlier. She'll recover with rest, however, it'll be a day, at the least.

Tera Flinders/Hana Miyahara Perception check 17:

You hear Bagrin chuckle a bit, then say. "Poor bastards. No idea what they're in for...hmm."


Female Human Arcanist 3/Inquisitor 1 | Hero Points: 1/3 | HP: 19/19, NL: 0 | AC 14/13/11, Cold Resistance 1 | F+4 R +5 W+8 | Per: +10 | Init: +3 | Bolts: 4, Arrows: 14, Shocking Grasp: 21, Silent Image: 5, Magic Missile: 15
Spells and Abilities:
Arcanist Spells - 1st: 1/5 | Inquisitor Spells - 1st: 1/2 | Arcane Reservoir: 4/6, Judgments: 1/1

Perception: 1d20 + 1 ⇒ (2) + 1 = 3

All Tera hears is the piano. Its sad song continuing in the background. The paladin looks down, unsure of what to do now. She figured the man was hurt, but she was sure she wasn't going to be able to, or even allowed to, help him any time soon.

She looks down at her hands, reformed from the second disintegration now. Curiosity began to take her mind from things she could do nothing about. Since Lilith was not going to be awake anytime soon, and the other girl wasn't up and walking yet, she decided to pass the time by seeing what she could do.

First, she reached up to the haft of the halberd on her back, reaching until she touched the shaft.

BTW, do we still feel the weight of our gear.


Tera Flinders:

Testing various things out of your curiosity you immediately figure out that everything you do still has weight. Your own body is capable of touching itself. Teehee


Male Human Wizard 3, +5 Initiative, +6 Perception, AC 11 / Touch AC 11 / Flat Footed AC10, Saves F+2/ R +w / W +6 HP:19/19

The wizard smiled wrly at how the dwarves greeted each other.

I suppose thats how I must appear when in the presence of colleagues...

Walking over the stand that was at the far end of the room, Bannon passed the dwarves in their merry making.

Hm...busy in thought...it would be rude for me to interrupt him. I remember once during my studies an eager apprentice nearly foiled a theorum I had worked so very hard on. Speaking of that....damn boy

Cornelius shifted about on the wizards staff, or more else walking-perch as he watched the human toil effortless.

Taking a step over to the stand, Bannon merely watched with interest as the fellow arcanist was working on a formula.

"He doesn't seem that much older than me - perhaps my senior.

Leaning over, he was checking out the words that the man was enscribing.

"Hm...I never thought to use Coriander in that manner. Must produce some interesting results." Noticing that he had garnered the arcanist's attention, Bancroft continued. "A fellow lover of the craft. The name's Bannon, pleasure to meet you. he said in the most endearing way.

Now now, one musn't come off as a know-it-all or even prude. We've all to learn something from each other. And if its anything in the slightest, its the knowledge to avoid them.


Female Human Arcanist 3/Inquisitor 1 | Hero Points: 1/3 | HP: 19/19, NL: 0 | AC 14/13/11, Cold Resistance 1 | F+4 R +5 W+8 | Per: +10 | Init: +3 | Bolts: 4, Arrows: 14, Shocking Grasp: 21, Silent Image: 5, Magic Missile: 15
Spells and Abilities:
Arcanist Spells - 1st: 1/5 | Inquisitor Spells - 1st: 1/2 | Arcane Reservoir: 4/6, Judgments: 1/1

Finding out she didn't disintegrate when she tried to touch her gear, or her own skin, she shrugs, and notices that the armor is starting to get really uncomfortable. She spends the next few minutes getting out of it and bundling it in her pack. Once she's done, she stretches the kinks out of her back and turns to the other woman in the room (Hana.)

"Don't suppose you can walk yet, can you?"


M Dwarf Fighter 6 / inquisitor 3 | HP 88/88 | AC:23, T:15, F:19 | CMD:25, CMB:+11 | Save (F+11, R+7, W+6) | Init:+6 | Perc: +13 , DV 60'

Bromen stands respectfully silent, his figures absently tracing some detailing on his breastplate. Father's work. Fine work. But Aralak is no Arcus.

The dwarf waits with the patience of a mountain.


Bannon and Bromen:

As the man walks around, he actually doesn't hear you, but the psuedodragon on his shoulders stares at you and tilts it's head at you. Marco reaches down into his cabinets, and does something behind the desk that you don't see, but learn he simply dipped his pin in ink as he comes back up and writes the words; Insubstantial = inexistence? into his spellbook around the edges around a spell you can't quickly identify.

He leans back over, completely not noticing the Dwarf or Bannon, despite him audibly inquiring a question. Fortunately, the psuedodragon does. It raises a claw and knocks Marco on the head, to which he aptly responds with; "Confounded amalgamation! What is i- Oh"

On his face is a strange lens with about 5 smaller lenses above it that seem to be able to drop down over it. Peculiar, but it's obviously used for identification.

"Oh! A fellow colleague. A pleasure, I'm sure." He shakes your hand rather quick with both of his. "My name is Marco, err, you're a wizard as well? Fun! Coriander, eh? I say, this is no coriander good sir, this is... not coriander, no, this is... a weed from Agristrad! Yes! That's it." He scratches his head, looking over at a wall. The Psuedodragon reaches over to grab a vile, but then Marco leans forward and looks rather closely at bannon's spellbook. "Hmm... While I'm not in a pinch on spells, sir, I wouldn't mind taking a gander at that there spellbook."

Then all of a sudden, as if coming to a stern realization, his eyes lowered, and simply said "You're new... Tsk tsk tsk" He hung his head, reaching down and grabbing 2 vials of red liquid. "Cure Moderate Wounds. Made 2 this morning. I feel you'll need them..." He said as he pushed them forward.

"So what brings you here? Save, well, for dieing? Bagrin send you?"


Male Human Wizard 3, +5 Initiative, +6 Perception, AC 11 / Touch AC 11 / Flat Footed AC10, Saves F+2/ R +w / W +6 HP:19/19

Bannon was taken aback by the sudden show of gratitude. Without a second thought, the wizard stashes the new potions within his backpack.

"My...this could prove to be a boon. Best not to overstep.

Marco wrote:
"So what brings you here? Save, well, for dieing? Bagrin send you?"

.

The wizard gave a wry smile while addressing Marco's inquiry.

"Having learned upon a fellow arcanist from Bagrin, I immediately came here. This place...is different from my Nibrelter. While I'm sure to not waste your precious time, I was hoping to learn a little more about this place, if you don't mind" said the Abjurer with respect. It wasn't every day that you were dead, or found in a different place, and at times, all a person needs is a friend.

Having gained Marco's interest, Bannon carefully phrased his question.

"Bagrin mentioned...a mist and that I and several others were chosen to fight it. What am I supposed to make out of this?"

I do hope that this being 'new' here doesn't deem that I lose this wizard's respect. I've need of...well anything relative to my studies. And such an ally lost, would be detrimental. Though...one must ask.


Bannon and Bromen:
Marco shook his head. "Nothing that amazing to it, really. Consider it chance, or rather, blind luck. I've studied keeper Lilith for quite some time now and I watched the recent ritual. 5 is a rare number, indeed, really. The most before was 2, and that was the lovers! Rydel and Anastasia. They're usually sitting around close to each other on the second floor." He sighed.

The man's brow furrowed when he heard you mention you were from Nibreltar.
"That place... Yes that's certainly one of the remaining sanctuaries... Not much of one, mind you, as the demons and the like have taken over.

The psuedodragon stood on his shoulders, still, and leaned down and clicked it's jaws together rather eagerly. Marco looked up at it and then seemed to get lost in thought. "The mist had been around Nibreltar for a long time before the demons finally overran it, but, there are 5 other places that still remain. I wouldn't really call them nice living spaces, but... they're certainly still around."

He chuckled a bit. "I died in the Dukedom of Gibraltar. One of those monstrous guards caught me brewing health potions for the sick, and, well, that was apparently a no no. I then showed up here, much like you and- He looked over your shoulder at the dwarf. - the rest of you."

As for any specific reason... well, I regret to inform you it's just luck. Nothing more. Everyone that's been picked has had "Potential" really, but, some of them waste it. I won't say names. He sort of casts a glance toward the man with the Big nose that's now polishing a garnet.

He immediately reassesses himself and looks up at "Assistant" "Why don't you grab that, hey? The man continues to talk as the creature climbs down and reaches into a rather massive set of papers, books, and scrolls, carefully sifting through the lot of them. "While he looks for that, I know what Bagrin sent you for, most likely. Aether... He reaches out his hand and a white, wispy substance appears in his hand.

"Truly magical, this... essence. I've devoted the majority of my time here studying it, and, all I can say is that this kind of thing really shouldn't exist." As he says that, the creature perches back up and hands him a set of papers as it's wickedly long legs perch back on his shoulders."

Have a look at them, though, rememeber to hand them back. Afterward, how's about we share spellbooks, hmm? I'm sure we can both benefit." He hands you the the 3 pieces of paper, wrapped with a small golden line of cloth. They're a little worn with things written all over the place, but, it'd take a pretty good amount of understanding to get anything else from the notes as they appear to be formulas, though, not an alchemists.

An Explanation of Aether (Bannon):

“The Aether”

“The Aether is the Nexus's plaything. Whimsical, multicolored mist that dances around conduits of it. It is simply the form of someone's life force. Aether, while in the Nexus, dances visibly around it's vessel, the player and NPC's. There is a lot to be learned, and already known about the Aether, but, let's leave that to the most studied, shall we?”

“The Vessels” - Apothecary Marco

“Aether takes many forms. For us in the Nexus, that form is, well, us. It clings to our soul, or rather, engulfs it. It seems to use that to take up our latent forms, which, for us, is our form just before our untimely demise. The Aether makes up our form, and the rest? It just sort of dances around us. It's easy to see through, that is, if it actually got in our faces. No, Aether seems to just dance far above us in some form of circular motion in the top of the Nexus. As we walk out, it joins us, turning translucent on the physical plain.”

“A little bit of the Aether, though, clings to us even if it can't solidify, and this gains a color! An interesting fact. For me, it was a brown, though, I'm not exactly sure what that means. All the more reason to study!”

“Aether seems to be related to... something. I'm not quite sure, but I do have a perfect example! 2 new arrivals came in today, and they are the same color! This is wonderful. I'll just study them in secret till I learn what their differences and things are.”

“Funny thing about these 2. While I'm not one to point fun, they're aura's color is... pink. The closest I can come to a conclusion is that they're simply lovers. It would seem that the Aether's color coincides with a person's deepest personality traits. Lovely!”
“I should probably mention you need to be able to cast Arcane sight to see any of this. Oh well!”

“The Invulnerability” - Apothecary Marco

“Struck gold today. Very happy to learn this, as it allows me to be more astute with my studies and brewing. I'm invincible! Or rather, untouchable. Wasn't watching where I was going today as I was lost in thought as to why the newcomers were both pink, and I accidentally walked through Bagrin! Literally, too. My conscious stayed as it was and I merely kept walking through him. It was astounding! We both sort of... Disintegrated as we walked, and then regained ourselves a few seconds later.
Bagrin kept on walking, as I'm sure it hadn't been his first time with that, but me! I was astonished!”

“Can't touch a single other person. Now, that's not a bad thing, mind you, but it looks like the magic distance is 1 inch away before things start to come apart. Weapons especially. Rodrick was nice enough to try and stab me in the face when I told him I didn't know what weapons did as Aether. He cut me off on did. He laughed heartily, but... who does that?”

“The Aether and the Soul” - Apothecary Marco

“Once again, Bagrin died today. I asked him what it was like, and if it had any detrimental effects. It was about this time I learned that we weren't as invincible as I'd hoped. He'd attempted to reach the Duke's quarters, again, and apparently some... monstrosity of a beast stopped him from doing so. Anyways, I learned that the Aether can't handle the fatal harm of it's vessel, and actually escapes into nearby vessels upon death.”

“A Vessel is anything that contains Copious amounts of resealed Aether, which, at the moment is anyone in the Nexus, and that's all. Regular, living creatures and people, if there are any people, can't gain it. Bagrin once died defending someone from the Nexus, Rodrick or Sebastian, I believe. Maybe the new healer? Not sure, but, part of his Aether joined her, and well, she got stronger? I'm not sure how to put it. She said it was as if all of her teachings had accelerated, or, massive amounts of insight befell her. Needless to say, the Aether apparently augments our abilities and accelerates our learning processes. Perhaps we gain it over time? I wonder how much I have...”

“The loss of Aether is a substantially awful thing, as, in my desire to learn what it was like, I... kind of got killed. Yes, it was in the Chilling pass of Argosol. Mind you I wasn't actually trying to die, no, I was simply looking for ingredients to put towards potions. It just so happened that I'd happened to run into one of that damned Lich's vicious sentries.

Anyways, upon death I... lost something. Potion ideas, knowledge, skill, prowess, everything. I lost experience, for lack of a better word. The Aether apparently is experience given form, and, well, if you lose all of the things you've ever done, well... poof.”

“The Aether and Equipment” - Apothecary Marco

“The blacksmith, Arcus, has apparently learned how to do something rather remarkable. He can shape a person's Aether, if they're willing. Now, this is something I've only seen him do, but apparently it's rather easy once you get the hang of it.”

“A weapon composed of Aether, when separated from a tangible source of a person's Aether, will disperse immediately, provided that person is dead. The Aether from this weapon will then cling to nearby conduits, effectively giving them experience.”

Sczarni

Female Kitsune Bard 3; AC 17, 13 touch 14 flat-footed; HP 21/21, Fort +2, Ref +6, Will +4; +5 Initiative, +6 Perception

Perception: 1d20 + 6 ⇒ (11) + 6 = 17 Booyah!

"I'll walk you a marathon, my dear, if it gets us free of this morose place." She sets her hands on her hips and looks about the room once before seemingly deciding that she's done with it.

Paladin of ... Well, a paladin. Simple enough. This person looked like a challenger, a powerful ally, and they'd do as her protector in this place. "You can still hold your weapon? That's good. Don't know when something here might come up out of the shadows." Hana would clap her on the shoulder, but she thought disintegration might be painful, so she abated.

"Well, since the rules are that we can't touch anyone, let's leave this poor girl to her nap. Want to investigate that music? We can ask him to play something upbeat instead."


hp 28/28, grit 2/3 Male Human Gunslinger 1 / Fighter 2

As the pain pounds in his head, Roman takes a few steps back from the dwarf «There, there - now can you tell me what this is? Is this some trick of the Seekers, when they probe you?» he shivers remebering the sensation «Did they drug me or something?» he looks at his left arm «they broke all the bones in this arm not a minute ago - now it's all good. Not to mention the head. What... who are you?»

Not that I have any experience of the contrary, but do I feel entirely corporeal? Do I have my scars, can I feel my muscles tense up, does it hurt if I bite into my arm, etc...?


M Dwarf Fighter 6 / inquisitor 3 | HP 88/88 | AC:23, T:15, F:19 | CMD:25, CMB:+11 | Save (F+11, R+7, W+6) | Init:+6 | Perc: +13 , DV 60'

Seeing no response coming from Arcus any time soon, Bromen turns to regard the human. As he looks the man up and down he cannot help but think of just how cloistered his training has been. Alive five decades, can count on 1 hand how many humans I've actually seen before this.

The thought is fleeting as centuries of prejudice banish any curiosity there might have been. "No clue who yer 'Seekers' are, but if ye believe the locals we got here by dyin'." The dwarf looks into the man's new eyes, still trying to reconcile what he sees with the eyeless image of a few moments before. "Yer comin back was a bit more....lively than some of the others."

"I am Bromen, of clan Vrektel. There are three others who arrive with us, and a few folks already here that may have more answers. But so far the answers aren't makin' too much sense."


Male Human Wizard 3, +5 Initiative, +6 Perception, AC 11 / Touch AC 11 / Flat Footed AC10, Saves F+2/ R +w / W +6 HP:19/19

With great interest, Bancroft eyed the sheets of parchment that Marco had presented. "Hm...this could help explain.... Before finishing his thought, he gingerly undid the binding of the golden string and carefully regarded the top most sheet.

His eyes strained to understand his colleague's notes, but it recognizing the accentuation of the ligature and how thick or thin Marco's brush strokes were, he was taken aback by the first heading - The Aether.

Before reading further, and as a token of friendship, Bannon had no qualms allowing Marco to peruse through his spellbook - after all, spellbooks and notes were windows to an arcanists souls; repositories of precious knowledge.

The Wizard pulled his spellbook which laid at his side - a medium sized leathered book that had a slight tint of red. Though relatively new, there was some indentation and folds within the pages. Placing the book before the arcanist, Bancroft dived through the texts that Marco had presented him, all the while Cornelius regarded the psuedodragon with interest.


hp 28/28, grit 2/3 Male Human Gunslinger 1 / Fighter 2

«Are... are you talking to me?» Roman is a bit taken aback when the other dwarf talks to him. Then he starts actually listening «So I'm dead... guess at least one thing went according to plan. Been a bit worried I was still in the Seekers' hands.» then he adds «Oh, you don't wanna know 'bout them, pard. Trust me.»

«So you reckon I came back? For a second there I thought this was a dwarven Valhalla thing - and I walked in here by mistake... sure never heard 'bout this place at the Temple when I was a kid...» he looks around a bit «But I see there's plenty of us...» he extends a hand to Bromen «Name's Roman - happy that someone's more helpful than this fella over here.» he nods towards Arcus.


Female Human Arcanist 3/Inquisitor 1 | Hero Points: 1/3 | HP: 19/19, NL: 0 | AC 14/13/11, Cold Resistance 1 | F+4 R +5 W+8 | Per: +10 | Init: +3 | Bolts: 4, Arrows: 14, Shocking Grasp: 21, Silent Image: 5, Magic Missile: 15
Spells and Abilities:
Arcanist Spells - 1st: 1/5 | Inquisitor Spells - 1st: 1/2 | Arcane Reservoir: 4/6, Judgments: 1/1
Hana Miyahara wrote:

[dice=Perception]1d20+6 Booyah!

"I'll walk you a marathon, my dear, if it gets us free of this morose place." She sets her hands on her hips and looks about the room once before seemingly deciding that she's done with it.

Paladin of ... Well, a paladin. Simple enough. This person looked like a challenger, a powerful ally, and they'd do as her protector in this place. "You can still hold your weapon? That's good. Don't know when something here might come up out of the shadows." Hana would clap her on the shoulder, but she thought disintegration might be painful, so she abated.

"Well, since the rules are that we can't touch anyone, let's leave this poor girl to her nap. Want to investigate that music? We can ask him to play something upbeat instead."

"I guess so. Though I'd rather find out what happened."

And if I did any good at all...

Tera motions for the other woman to lead.

"By the way, I don't think we've been introduced. My name is Tera."


M Dwarf Fighter 6 / inquisitor 3 | HP 88/88 | AC:23, T:15, F:19 | CMD:25, CMB:+11 | Save (F+11, R+7, W+6) | Init:+6 | Perc: +13 , DV 60'

The dwarf's eye narrow into a bit of a glare. "Have a care, dy-keeni. 'That fella' may well be the greatest smith that ever was."

Dy-Keeni:
Not exactly a curse but definitely not the nicest word in dwarven for 'round eared non-dwarf'

Despite his bluster, Bromen cannot help but look back at Arcus still engaged in his work and not speaking to them. He lets out a sigh and his expression softens. Well, softens for a dwarf, anyway. "Forget ye ran out before hearin' the details. According to the guy in th' other room, we're not really alive, and made of some wizard-stuff called Aether. Says we're here ta fight the mists or some such. Guess we got a lot to learn together."

The dwarf reaches out to shake the proffered hand.


Roman, Bannon, Bromen:
As roman gets up and extends his hand toward Broman, the swirling aura of particles that he moves away from, quickly regenerates into a wonderful sight. Slowly but surely a furnace, a water-filled tanker, plenty of tools, a myriad of masterwork weapons and utensils, an anvil, and every other blacksmithing tool you can possibly imagine finds their respective places in Arcus's newly formed forge.

As Roman and Bromen attempt to shake hands, both of their forearms immediately disentegrate, though as usual, they both pull away at the phenomenon, even if it doesn't hurt at all, it still surprises them.

"Much as I'd enjoy a right-proper 'andshake, we can't touch each other 'ere. Keeper's rules. I'da thrown ya if I could ya daft bastard." He sits down in a chair, and immediately returns to chiseling what appear to be runes into the mercilessly spiked balls of a dire flail.

"Ta' answer your previous question, boy, yes, ye are. 'pparently whatever done ya in did it mighty well, too. Ran right inta' my forge while I was workin'. Pull that again, 'nd I sabatage that bit'a paper you call armor. In this hell hole, yer' gonna' need me."

He chiseled away with pride, obviously a master at his craft. Quick and precise, he was, on a spherical surface, no less. "If'n ya looking for something to do, or rather, figure out, I do have favor to ask of ye'-"

At about this time the elf, Finelia, from the other side of the room, interjected. "Only if they want weighed down by 3 inches of iron. You never consider that some people might require leather, or bows, Arcus. She chuckled. "Besides, you don't even have your proper tools." While she wasn't outright berating him, you could sense a rivalry in the two by just those words alone.

On her end, Finelia was carefully trimming edges off of what appeared to be a sapphire, and setting it carefully into a small ring. It looked like it would go on a pinkey.

Marco looks at Bannon as he goes through the scrolls that explain Aether, and the Pseudodragon picks up the spellbook on the table with it's long arms and opens the first few pages and flips straight to the last page.

"Hmm... No notes, save for the spells themselves. Not too far in, are you? No worries, this place forces you to get better fast, trust me. That being said, there are some things that look rather interesting... Mind you, if I take time to transfer some of these into my spellbook while you get acquainted with your new surroundings? Nothing in here can harm you, I assure you."

He scratches his head for a moment, quickly met with the pseudodragon scratching it as well. He stops but the dragon doesn't. "I'm a little stressed on time, so I'll only be able to grab one spell, but, we can make time in the future. There's one in particular I'm interested in, really, one of those... 2 page ones, oh yes. Shouldn't take longer than 2 hours, no." He looks at you, rather curious, familiar still scratching his head.

Guess who just realized that he has the 3 stooges in his game.

Tera, Hana:

The music picks up, and while it is a wonderful tone now that completely encompasses the entirety of the area you're both currently in, it is still detrimentally saddening, though.

Walking up the steps, however, the both of you manage to notice 2 people sitting rather close to each other on a perch, far away. They seem to be engrossed in conversation.

The staircases seem rather straightforward as you approach the second level of the nexus, the one beneath the chandelier. There are 2 sets of stairs that lead up from the base-floor, which in turn leads to a large, wide walkway that eventually leads to yet another staircase that goes even higher, still below the chandelier.

The 2 people are sitting on the edge of the walkway, feat both dangling in the air.


hp 28/28, grit 2/3 Male Human Gunslinger 1 / Fighter 2

«And now what the nine-layered Hell is this trick?» groans Roman as he sees his hand appear and disappear when he tries to touch Bromen «I didn’t come back too good, you ask me! Not sure I like this place… still better than the real nine-layered Hell though, right?» Roman tries his trademark grin as he attempts to shake off the uncomfortable sensation.

«Ok, so let me get this straight. Is this what happens to those who forget to go to Temple on Moonday? I never was one for religion myself, but this is some higher-power thingamajig if I’ve ever seen one!»

He then turns to Arcus «You know, I think I can use something to do. I really ain’t too inclined to, you know, think too hard about what just happened – guess I’d rather work with my hands!» he looks at his hand that just recomposed «Oh, right… well, supposing I can work with my hands when they tend to disappear like that…» he shrugs «Must be better than fighting the Black Mist, I say. Who’s the genius that came up with that idea? Ah! I just died once doing a stupidly impossible thing, don't much care to repeat the experience!»


Roman Bromen Bannon:

The Dwarf grunts a bit, though he does retrieve a rather large sword from the waters that recently remade itself. Without making eye contact, the dwarf cleared his throat, while wiping some sweat from his brow. Odd, considering the room wasn't even warm.

"If'n ya want work, then I've got a job for ye! My tools... My tools, back in Hazrit. I'd tried gettin'm before, but, they're all solid silver. ... Now, tell me, what d'ya think that means? Magical Silver tools. The dwarf asks, looking at Roman, knowing for a fact he has no idea what Hazrit is like.

"A Wyrmling came in, red bastard, and roasted me. That's how I got here, and I attempted ta' gett'm back, but, I died again. Since then, the wyrmling's made a den out of the place, I'd say. The hollow dwarves will leave ya' alone, if'n ya don't carry anything valuable. The den's a good mile away from where you'll end up if'n ya head there through the hub on the top floor." He scratched his beard, looking up for a moment.

He spoke louder to address everyone in the room that'd just arrived. "There's some white aether in it for you people if you get it all back here. Mind that wyrmling, though!" He's ferocious, for a youngster."


M Dwarf Fighter 6 / inquisitor 3 | HP 88/88 | AC:23, T:15, F:19 | CMD:25, CMB:+11 | Save (F+11, R+7, W+6) | Init:+6 | Perc: +13 , DV 60'

A look of shock crosses Bromen's face as his hand disintegrates and comes back, but that is nothing compared to the blank stare as the smith continues speaking. Me? A favor for THE Arcus?

The mention of the wyrmling brings his eyes back into focus. "Aye, the youngsters can be bad." He can almost hear the twig-snapping noise echoing in his ears again. "But returnin' to Hazrit for such a noble cause, worth the risk."

He bows his head. "My dorn is at yer command, Forgemaster."

Sczarni

Female Kitsune Bard 3; AC 17, 13 touch 14 flat-footed; HP 21/21, Fort +2, Ref +6, Will +4; +5 Initiative, +6 Perception

"Hana," she says, then extends her hand-- withdrawing it with a sigh a second afterwards. "Charmed, I'm sure."

She leads up the staircase, bravely forging ahead. She sees the two people sitting and gestures to them, giving Tera an 'why not' expression before approaching.

"Hail," Hana waves as she approaches. "Perhaps you can enlighten us further on the grand mysteries of this place. Or, perhaps, the grand mysteries of a simple set of directions to the piano hall. Or, your names and your acquaintance will suffice. I am Hana and this is my companion, Tera. How do you do?" She bows.


Bannon Bromen Roman:

That spoiler title kills me every time in a good way.

Swinging down his hammer as hard as he can on the weapon, the sword on the anvil nearly halves in thickness, and he keeps hitting it slowly, rhythmically, mumbling a few choice words to himself. Arcus looks up to see Bromen. "Aye, and I'm thankful, truly. Those tools're magical, as I mentioned! Worth their weight in gold, and Aether. The dragon's like to barter, though. Wyrmlings do, at least. Impatient, but, if you could bring them something worth about 1800 or so gold, it'd help with diplomacy.

He smashes his hammer again. [b]"If'n I had the materials, I'd send something worth that much wit'ya, but, alas, I don't. Much's I disagree with the idea... He points outside of the room, just around the wall at the man with the large nose polishing gems as he leans in. "Bit of a... nut, really. s'the guy to go too though if'n yer lookin' for pricey trinkets. Might be able ta' crack a deal."

Leaning back, he turns to dip the obviously two-handed weapon into the fire again. Turning around he puts his arms on his sides; "Or ye could just kill it! Haha! If ya got the stuff for it! Regardless, pay from me's the same. With that the man pulls the sword out and smashes it even harder than he had previously done.

Tera and Hana:

As you both walk around the pathway you realize that these 2 had a perfect view of all of you reconstituting, curious enough. They never said anything, but they'd probably watched and heard the majority of the conversation with Bagrin.

Of the 2, the man seems like a statue until he turns to look at both of you. His hair is red and lengthy, and he seems to be wearing a suit of full plate armor crafted nicely. It bears plenty of insignias, all of which seem to be relatively the same, though at the moment exactly what they mean avoids you. The armor itself seems masterfully crafted, and the right arm seems to have especially sharp edges to it that seem usable for slashing.

To his left, a much more movable person, a young woman with raven-black hair much like the woman below's. She has white robes on with relatively the same insignias, though a massive red stain is notable on her right arm and chest.

While the man only looks as you arrive, the woman nearly jumps off the balcony as she stands, obviously excited. "New arrivals! Yay! and then she immediately sits back down, rather powty. "Excuse me, I get excited when new people show up, even if it does mean that... well... they died. She bounces, looking at Hana; "Regardless! Welcome to the Nexus! I'm not really sure myself, haha. She dangles her legs a bit after 2 seconds of not talking.

"If you're looking into the music, that's Nefroy's doing. My name is Anastasia by the way! This is Rydell; She says, pointing both overturned hands toward him. He gives a slight wave and a gentle "heh". "Nefroy is the local bard and is extremely good at playing the Piano. He tends to only play this song whenever new people arrive though... It's fitting! But, a little too fitting...

She scoots just a bit closer to Rydell, and gestures for him to say something as well. Looking at Tera, he asks; "That's Nibreltar armor... congratulations. We seem to be from the same province. How long ago did you die?" Immediately a hand goes by his head causing his upper body to disentegrate as Anastasia's slap misses entirely.

She sighs, looking at her arm as it remakes itself rather fast. She seems a little frustrated and sad at the fact, though. Rydell, you can't just go and ask people that!... Besides, if they've just now arrived, that means they've been dead, at the least, a week... She looks up at Hana; "Sorry about that. If you're looking to speak to Nefroy, he's on the top floor just take those stairs." she says, pointing at the staircase that leads up to a platform just above.


Female Human Arcanist 3/Inquisitor 1 | Hero Points: 1/3 | HP: 19/19, NL: 0 | AC 14/13/11, Cold Resistance 1 | F+4 R +5 W+8 | Per: +10 | Init: +3 | Bolts: 4, Arrows: 14, Shocking Grasp: 21, Silent Image: 5, Magic Missile: 15
Spells and Abilities:
Arcanist Spells - 1st: 1/5 | Inquisitor Spells - 1st: 1/2 | Arcane Reservoir: 4/6, Judgments: 1/1

The mention of Nibreltar brings a flash of pain to Tera's eyes, but it fades as quickly as it comes. After Anastasia's apology, she waves off the imagined offence, and found she wanted to stay for a while.

"Well meet, both of you. Yes, I'm Nibreltar, and I hope to one day see it free. There's no need to apologize."

She chews the inside of her lip a bit, unsure of how to proceed. She'd been trained in war, and the courtly rituals of her peers weren't things that interested her. After a few seconds of indecision, she made up her mind.

"Mind if I stay a little while and talk? I'm afraid most of my conversations have been about strategy, rather bleak strategy at that."


Tera and Hana:

Anastasia smiles rather wide. Usually the only company me and Rydel have are each other, and, occasionally Carmina and Sebastian, but he's only ever interested in anything Rydel's found searching Nibreltar. Her smiled disappeared as she said Nibreltar's name in a rather hushed tone, somewhat remembering something as she said it.

"You died in the purge, didn't you... oh.." She sort of looks down and Rydell attempts to touch her to give her a pat on the back, but stops his hand, remembering the issue of disintegration.

Rydell then looks up at you. Rydell's face has a notable scar on his upper right eye that he probably got prior to his death. "Nibreltar is completely overran by demons, devils, and the like. The last time I went in I was killed by what Marco said was a "Schir" but, I'm not sure what it is. Goat-headed thing with a halberd... Nasty."

Placing a hand on his chest, he apparently had been wounded there, but, nothing was apparent. "Nibreltar's not around anymore, unless you've got a death wish." he stayed silent, sitting on the edge for a moment.

Anastasia raised a hand to slap him again, but stopped short. "Sorry we got on topic of this again... it probably isn't helping."


Male Human Wizard 3, +5 Initiative, +6 Perception, AC 11 / Touch AC 11 / Flat Footed AC10, Saves F+2/ R +w / W +6 HP:19/19

Bannon had been in mid -thought, reading the last of the arcanist's notes as the dwarf began to declare his plight.

Ever one for knowledge, the Wizard's ears pricked at what Arcus was saying.

Arcus wrote:
If'n ya want work, then I've got a job for ye! My tools... My tools, back in Hazrit - - A Wyrmling came in, red bastard, and roasted me.

Hm...tools. I don't see much interest in that for me...except...wyrmling.

In Bannon's life, he'd read some facts and lore about monsters - particular the kind to avoid. He wasn't particularly fascinated, but some creature's could prove to be good sources of magic, or for spell components.

He perused his thoughts for any inklings on Wyrmlings.
I'm not sure exactly which knowledge it falls under...

Checks:
Knowledge//Nature:1d20 + 8 ⇒ (8) + 8 = 16
Knowledge//History:1d20 + 8 ⇒ (7) + 8 = 15
Knowledge//Planes:1d20 + 8 ⇒ (14) + 8 = 22

Joining the ranks of the other two gentleman, Bannon cast his lot into the gamble.

"Pardon me, but your mentioning of a Wyrmling is...rather fascinating. No don't mind me, I'm not saying that losing your tools is, but on the contrary, this opportunity affords me the ability to learn about said creature.

Giving a nod to the blacksmith and to his fellows near him, Bancroft introduces himself.

"Well a ho and tut there. Behold I am Bannon, Abjurer and scholar of the lands at your service."

He assumed that the dwarves weren't impressed with his display, he followed up with a greeting he learned during his academy days.

ш, фь лтщцт фы ифутщт ща еру ыещту. лшуб - фзцщдф, лукф зшдф идфлуф!!!!

Dwarven:
"I am Baenóm of the stone. Hail!!! May our forges burn!!!

"So, when should be the momentous occasion?"

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