GM Endless Forms' Rise of the Runelords (Inactive)

Game Master Mike Tuholski

Spires of Xin-Shalast (Book 6)

Northeast Varisia | Xin-Shalast | Tactical Map

Sandpoint | Sandpoint Hinterlands | Varisia | LOOT!


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Giant Slayer 17| HP 241/241 (214/292) |20% MC AC:23 T:15 FF:21 CMD: 41(45) | F+21 R+15 W+12 | Init +2 | Per +27

"As long as don't hurt Isoult, let's do it!"

Sealman looks up at Lucian with kindergarden eyes.

"Do I have to read the whole thing? Can't you just read it to me like a bedtime story?"

Sealman and Thunderpuss both look at Miana blankly, not comprehending anything she just said.

Oh yah, sign me up! 20+ years of gaming, finally got to read one of those damn books!


Male Human (Varisian) Oracle (Lore) 8, Evangelist 10 | HP 165/165 | AC:36 T:20 FF:29 CMD: 30 | F+13 R+22 W+24 (+2 vs transmutation) | Init +5 | Per +25 (+4 to determine whether he's surprised), Darkvision 60ft

"Well, that's the point Sealman. You don't have to actually read it, I'll teach you and make the same exercises as you, if you'll have me! First, stretch your arms, then pulll..."

I'm envisionning the "fitness trainer" prestige class for Lucian!

Silver Crusade

Female Suli Paladin 3/ Monk-Un 4/ CoI 10 | HP 181/181 | AC 28 (39)* T 28 (30) FF 24 (35)* | F +22 R +20 W +21* (22) | CMD 48 | Init +4 | Perc +20 | Smite 3/3 Lay on Hands 12/12 Stunning Fist 14/14 Elemental Assault 17/17 Ki Points 13/14 Inevitable Fist 17/17

Heh, if only I could partake, too. But gotta share the Lucian love :)


The Flaxseed Pathfinder Lodge

@Lucian: it doesn't say so I'll assume it's fully charged.

And Rissi did jump the gun again. There's a map! But you've got most of the important stuff done; as you can tell, the Abjurant Halls of Envy are in a bit of disrepair.

Before crafting or imbuing any weapons, Rissi remembers that there is still one more place to check: The Abjurant Halls of Envy.

As you head down the hall, a voice booms out a resounding command: “Stop!” The source is a large disembodied human mouth stretched across the ceiling of this section of the tunnel. It continues, “These are the Abjurant Halls of Eager Striving. Know that your powers will be crushed and you shall die! You are not worthy!”

Rissi knows this is only a magic mouth spell and the party goes in further. A wide staircase of stone descends into a large, partially caved-in chamber. The murals and decorative bas-reliefs on the walls have been blasted and fractured from what must have been a titanic war of magic. Sooty humanoid bones are scattered here and there, and flames sporadically flicker along the walls and floor as if the room still resonates with the power unleashed here. Electrical discharges spark from a silver rod protruding from the floor in the center of the room—it almost looks like the metal rod has fused with the stone of the floor.

Rissi recognizes the metal as a rod of cancellation, although Kufieno is quick to point out that it is malfunctioning and on the brink of sending out a dangerous pulse. i.e. it is trapped. Luckily everyone is able to back out in time before anything dangerous happens.

On the other end of the Halls, decorative lanterns illuminate an otherwise mostly bare room. A tiled path in the granite flagstones leads from the entrance to three steps leading down to a mirrored surface.

The tiny amount of ethillion remaining in the pool can be used. Enough doses of ethillion remain in the pool to fill a dozen flasks—ethillion can be safely transported in anything that can transport water. A character who drinks a flask of the stuff becomes infused with magical potentiality, and gains a +2 bonus on his next skill check made to craft a magic item. In addition, the time required to create the item is reduced by 1 day (to a minimum of 1 hour). Multiple doses of ethillion stack; the effects persist until the first time the drinker attempts to craft a magic item. Alternatively, a character can use a flask of ethillion as an additional material component for any abjuration spell. Doing so causes that spell to resolve at a caster level 2 higher than the user’s actual caster level.

information about Runeforged weapons:

RUNEFORGED WEAPON SLOT
none
PRICE
+2 bonus
AURA strong (two variable schools) CL 13th WEIGHT N/A

During Thassilon’s height, many of the empire’s greatest
soldiers, mercenaries, and arcane assassins wielded weapons
infused with two allied schools of magic that worked together
to grant the wielder additional prowess over practitioners of an
opposing school of magic. Weapons steeped in enchantment and
illusion magic, for example, held great power over wielders of
transmutation. Such weapons were often banned in Thassilon,
so wary were the runelords of their propagation, yet all seven kept champions and assassins armed with runeforged weapons
targeting their enemies’ weaknesses in secret.

Each runeforged weapon o pposes a s chool o f m agic. T he
wielder gains a +2 morale bonus on all saving throws against
spells from the weapon’s opposed magic. All runeforged
weapons are, to a certain degree, empathic. They enhance sin
or virtue in those who wield them, so a fighter armed with
a dominant weapon becomes more domineering than before,
for example. Anyone wielding a runeforged weapon t akes a
–2 penalty on all Diplomacy checks, as her vices or virtues are
magnified at the expense of personality. No weapon can have
more than one runeforged weapon q uality a t a t ime, a nd a
creature that carries two runeforged weapons (even those o f
the same type) takes a –5 penalty on all attack rolls, Will saving
throws, and skill checks, as her mind is constantly assailed by
multiple empathic urges.

Each of the seven Thassilonian schools of magic is opposed
by a single runeforged weapon quality—each of these being
the combination of that school’s opposition schools. The seven
correct component combinations and the type of runeforged
weapon each combination c reates a re l isted below. Note that
the first name for each type of weapon listed is its sinful name—
the second is the name a virtuous character can use to refer
to the weapon. In any event, a runeforged weapon functions
the same, regardless of whether it magnifies a wielder’s sin
or virtue.

A wielder who is considered sinful or virtuous (see page 416)
with the same type of sin/virtue as a runeforged weapon he
wields becomes more aware of danger around him—gaining a +2
insight bonus on Initiative checks and a +1 dodge bonus to AC.

The specific effects of each of the seven types of runeforged
weapons are listed below.

Covetous/Charitable (opposes evocation): A union of
conjuration and abjuration magic, a covetous weapon functions
as a bane weapon against evokers and creatures with the fire
subtype. As long as the weapon is wielded, the wielder gains fire
resistance 5.

Dominant/Commanding (opposes transmutation): A union
of enchantment and illusion magic, a dominant weapon functions
as a bane weapon against transmuters and against creatures with
the shapechanger subtype. As long as the weapon is carried, it can
absorb up to three harmful transmutation effects (such as baleful
polymorph or petrification) inflicted on the wielder per day.

Jealous/Trusting (opposes necromancy): A union of abjuration
and enchantment magic, a jealous weapon functions as a bane
weapon against necromancers and against undead created by
necromancy spells (not against self-manifested undead or undead
created by the create spawn special ability). As long as the
weapon is carried, it can absorb up to 3 negative levels inflicted
on the wielder per day.

Miserly/Generous (opposes illusion): A union of
transmutation and conjuration magic, a miserly weapon functions
as a bane weapon against illusionists and creatures from the
Plane of Shadow. The first three times each day that this weapon
strikes an illusion, it automatically makes a dispel magic attempt
to dispel the illusion.

Parasitic/Symbiotic (opposes enchantment): A union of
necromancy and transmutation magic, a parasitic weapon functions
as a bane weapon against enchanters and against creatures that are
charmed, dominated, or otherwise under another creature’s magic
control. The first time each day that this weapon strikes a creature
under the effects of an enchantment spell, it automatically makes
a dispel magic attempt to dispel the enchantment. If the attempt
is successful, it siphons that energy into the wielder, healing her of
6d6 points of damage (hit points in excess of maximum are gained
as temporary hit points that last for 1 hour).

Sadistic/Compassionate (opposes abjuration): A union of
evocation and necromancy magic, a sadistic weapon functions as
a bane weapon against abjurers and any creatures with an active
abjuration spell effect. A sadistic weapon shrouds its wielder
in an aura of mock magic—when the wielder is subjected to a
dispelling effect, that dispelling attempt instead targets only the
aura of mock magic. If the aura is dispelled, it replenishes again
in 24 hours.

Tyrannical/Liberal (opposes conjuration): A union of illusion
and evocation magic, a tyrannical weapon functions as a bane
weapon against conjurers and summoned monsters. The first
three times each day that the weapon scores a critical hit against a
creature with the extraplanar subtype, the weapon casts dismissal
at the creature struck.

Runeforged weapon construction:

Any weapon can be made into a runeforged weapon, but the
process of creating such weapons is much more difficult than for
most magic items—runeforged weapons cannot be created by the
use of the Craft Magic Arms and Armor feat. Instead, they must
be created by infusing the selected weapon in the waters of the
Runeforge itself, a large magical pool at the center of the arcane
laboratory bearing the same name.

Before the runeforge pool can enhance a weapon, two
runeforge components must be immersed in the pool. If the
two objects both share the same opposition school, the pool
itself glows golden, and wisps of energy writhe up out of the
pool to caress any weapons within 30 feet of the pool’s surface.
The first weapon to be immersed in the pool glows brightly as
several Thassilonian runes etch themselves on the weapon,
permanently making it a runeforged weapon. (If the weapon
anointed was nonmagical, the pool additionally grants it a
+1 enhancement bonus.) The runeforge pool currently has
enough latent energy stored to effectively enhance one
weapon per PC (a separate set of components is required
for each weapon). Once a weapon has been runeforged, it
cannot be runeforged again. If no weapon is immersed in the
pool within a minute, the latent magic reverts back to the
runeforge components.

Aaaaaaaand level up to 15th!

And with that we're also finished with Book 5. Awesome! We are traveling this weekend so I will get your PFS chronicles passed out on Sunday night or Monday. We'll transition into book 6 once you guys are done upgrading your weapons and characters.


The Flaxseed Pathfinder Lodge

As Rissi works at crafting new gear for the party, she begins preparations around the runeforge pool to begin her first attempt at imbuing a weapon with runeforge power. As the process finishes, there is a sudden explosion of water and a beam of golden light bursts from the pool to bathe the statue of Karzoug. Immediately, the towering statue animates, transforming into an enormous stone golem. It stares down at you and speaks, the voice the same you heard issuing from Mokmurian some time ago: "You. Again. I can't help but be inspired by your optimism, but alas, your weapons will never reach Xin-Shalast. Your fate is death, here in Runeforge."

gm rolls:

ka: 1d20 + 0 ⇒ (9) + 0 = 9
Kufieno: 1d20 + 9 ⇒ (8) + 9 = 17
Lucian: 1d20 + 5 ⇒ (3) + 5 = 8
Miana: 1d20 + 2 ⇒ (5) + 2 = 7
Rissi: 1d20 + 8 ⇒ (10) + 8 = 18
Sealman: 1d20 + 2 ⇒ (16) + 2 = 18

Initiative:

1. Rissi, Seal, and Kufieno
2. Karzoug Statue
3. Lucian and Miana

Rissi, Seal, and Kufieno are up! Using the "Seeking Runeforge" map above.


Spell Effects:
heroism, false life, mage armor, mind blank, overland flight
Stats:
Wizard 17 | HP 121/121| AC:19 T:19 FF:15 CMD: 23 | F+13 R+13 W+15 | Init +11 | Per +24 (darkvision)

Rissi hisses in annoyance. "Were all the Runelords such charming conversationalists? All I hear is a spoiled child used to his way. I chhh rather would have enjoyed talking like civilized people."

Thoroughly annoyed, she summons an acid pit 70' deep underneath the golem. DC 22 reflex


Giant Slayer 17| HP 241/241 (214/292) |20% MC AC:23 T:15 FF:21 CMD: 41(45) | F+21 R+15 W+12 | Init +2 | Per +27

Sealman is caught with a piece of jerky in his mouth mid chew. Drool starts to dribble through his beard as he stares in awe at the Runelord before him. The dwarf slowly stands as he swallows the dried meat.

Sealman saunters over to the stone golem, slowly drawing Isoult in one hand and running his hand along the coarse fur of Thunderpuss with the other. Once in position, he taps one of the circling Ioun Stones and becomes Gigato-dwarf(TM). Sealman and Isoult at the ready.

"Thunderpuss go down the hall. We got this."

Evade Reach 10' now


The Flaxseed Pathfinder Lodge

I appreciate the charity sale (I took advantage of it) but I'll be glad when it's over. The site has been screwy the past couple days (and I still can't actually download the PDFs because the site has been so slow.

Ref: 1d20 ⇒ 5

As Giganto-Dwarf moves up to the statue, it goes toppling down into Rissi's acid pit!

damage: 7d6 ⇒ (5, 2, 6, 3, 5, 4, 6) = 31
acid: 2d6 ⇒ (1, 6) = 7

Climb: 1d20 + 15 ⇒ (15) + 15 = 30
Climb: 1d20 + 15 ⇒ (19) + 15 = 34

The golem begins climbing its way out of the pit! I believe 30' up with two move-action climbs.

Initiative:

1. Rissi, Seal, and Kufieno
2. Karzoug Statue (38 dmg)
3. Lucian and Miana

You guys are up!


Male Human (Varisian) Oracle (Lore) 8, Evangelist 10 | HP 165/165 | AC:36 T:20 FF:29 CMD: 30 | F+13 R+22 W+24 (+2 vs transmutation) | Init +5 | Per +25 (+4 to determine whether he's surprised), Darkvision 60ft

Lucian and Evanya both empower their companions with Desna's grace.

BoF + Good Hope


Giant Slayer 17| HP 241/241 (214/292) |20% MC AC:23 T:15 FF:21 CMD: 41(45) | F+21 R+15 W+12 | Init +2 | Per +27

Sealman awaits by the pit at the end of his longaxe's reach. He'll play wack-a-mole with the golem once it pokes its head out

Evade Reach, +2 to Hit/AC/Ref & Ready action: attack golem once a viable target.

Ready Action Goes off...:

Isoult vs Stone Golem: 1d20 + 16 ⇒ (8) + 16 = 24
Dmg: 4d6 + 26 ⇒ (4, 3, 5, 3) + 26 = 41


The Flaxseed Pathfinder Lodge

Lucian and Evanya give out their usual blessings as things start to get violent while Seal hovers over the pit and waits for the golem....

Initiative:

1. Rissi, Seal, and Kufieno
2. Karzoug Statue (38 dmg)
3. Lucian and Miana

Miana, Rissi, and Kufieno are up! Seal has a readied.


Spell Effects:
heroism, false life, mage armor, mind blank, overland flight
Stats:
Wizard 17 | HP 121/121| AC:19 T:19 FF:15 CMD: 23 | F+13 R+13 W+15 | Init +11 | Per +24 (darkvision)

Risdi prepares an acide arrow, should the creation reach the edge.

touch: 1d20 + 11 ⇒ (14) + 11 = 25
2d4 ⇒ (2, 3) = 5

arcana on golem: 1d20 + 32 ⇒ (17) + 32 = 49


The Flaxseed Pathfinder Lodge

Rissi recognizes that this is essentially an animated stone golem. They are hurt most effectively by adamantine and bludgeoning weapons, are immune to many magics, and can slow their victims. Just realized some of the falling damage probably shouldn't have applied the first time because of his DR but oh well, my mistake!

Climb: 1d20 + 15 ⇒ (1) + 15 = 16
Climb: 1d20 + 15 ⇒ (3) + 15 = 18

damage: 3d6 ⇒ (6, 3, 2) = 11
acid: 2d6 ⇒ (6, 3) = 9

The Karzoug statue tries to climb out of the acid pit but only slips back down into the acid at the bottom!

Initiative:

1. Rissi, Seal, and Kufieno
2. Karzoug Statue (47 dmg)
3. Lucian and Miana

You guys are up!

Silver Crusade

Female Suli Paladin 3/ Monk-Un 4/ CoI 10 | HP 181/181 | AC 28 (39)* T 28 (30) FF 24 (35)* | F +22 R +20 W +21* (22) | CMD 48 | Init +4 | Perc +20 | Smite 3/3 Lay on Hands 12/12 Stunning Fist 14/14 Elemental Assault 17/17 Ki Points 13/14 Inevitable Fist 17/17

Putting golem bane Scarab on and waiting...

-Posted with Wayfinder


Male Human (Varisian) Oracle (Lore) 8, Evangelist 10 | HP 165/165 | AC:36 T:20 FF:29 CMD: 30 | F+13 R+22 W+24 (+2 vs transmutation) | Init +5 | Per +25 (+4 to determine whether he's surprised), Darkvision 60ft

"Great Desna, let us spread our wings and discover freedom!" joyfully yells Lucian as the whole party is empowered with the ability to fly and thus get close to the pit without fear of falling inside tootoo.

Casting Mass Fly. The bonus on Fly check is +7.


Giant Slayer 17| HP 241/241 (214/292) |20% MC AC:23 T:15 FF:21 CMD: 41(45) | F+21 R+15 W+12 | Init +2 | Per +27

You can retcon the dmg EF. I know you've probably done it enough for us.

Embued with the ability to fly, a grin crawls across Sealman's face. He shoots up into the air and then dives down into the acid pit. Once in range (15', Evade Reach vs Golem) he begins to hack at it with Isoult.

PA Isoult vs Stone Golem: 1d20 + 21 ⇒ (6) + 21 = 27
Dmg: 4d6 + 27 ⇒ (6, 6, 1, 6) + 27 = 46


The Flaxseed Pathfinder Lodge

Nah, GM's mistake. I generally err in favor of the players when issues come up.

Lucian channels a gift from Desna which allows everyone to fly; Seal takes the opportunity to fly down into the pit, although his aim is off and his swing misses the golem.

Initiative:

1. Rissi, Seal, and Kufieno
2. Karzoug Statue (47 dmg)
3. Lucian and Miana

Rissi and Kufieno are up!


Spell Effects:
heroism, false life, mage armor, mind blank, overland flight
Stats:
Wizard 17 | HP 121/121| AC:19 T:19 FF:15 CMD: 23 | F+13 R+13 W+15 | Init +11 | Per +24 (darkvision)

Annoyed that the construct still persists, Rissi chooses to summon extraplanar aid. 1 round action


The Flaxseed Pathfinder Lodge

Rissi tries to summon aid as the construct tries desperately to reach Seal.

Climb: 1d20 + 15 ⇒ (19) + 15 = 34
About 15' up now, even with Seal.

And a blast of slow! DC 25 Will for Seal or slowed.

Initiative:

1. Rissi, Seal, and Kufieno
2. Karzoug Statue (47 dmg)
3. Lucian and Miana

You guys are up!


Giant Slayer 17| HP 241/241 (214/292) |20% MC AC:23 T:15 FF:21 CMD: 41(45) | F+21 R+15 W+12 | Init +2 | Per +27

Will Save: 1d20 + 11 ⇒ (7) + 11 = 18

Slowed Seal 5' "steps" up and hacks at the golem again.

Isoult vs Golem o' Doom: 1d20 + 18 ⇒ (4) + 18 = 22
Dmg: 4d6 + 25 ⇒ (1, 2, 4, 6) + 25 = 38


The Flaxseed Pathfinder Lodge

Flying up is half speed if I remember correctly so I don't think you can 5' fly up but you can reach him all the same without moving.

Seal swings but misses; this Kargoug statue is pretty tough!

Initiative:

1. Rissi, Seal, and Kufieno
2. Karzoug Statue (47 dmg)
3. Lucian and Miana

Lucian, Miana, Rissi, and Kufieno are up!

Now that we're entering the sixth book, I think everyone just doesn't want it to end or something; you guys have slowed down quite a bit during this combat.

Silver Crusade

Female Suli Paladin 3/ Monk-Un 4/ CoI 10 | HP 181/181 | AC 28 (39)* T 28 (30) FF 24 (35)* | F +22 R +20 W +21* (22) | CMD 48 | Init +4 | Perc +20 | Smite 3/3 Lay on Hands 12/12 Stunning Fist 14/14 Elemental Assault 17/17 Ki Points 13/14 Inevitable Fist 17/17

I missed Lucian's mass fly; I couldn't do much while the golem was in an acid pit, but now :P

Gifted with supernatural flight from Lucian, Miana takes the fight to the golem, acrobatically flying in to deliver a powerful crane kick!

"This is what shall become of your reign! The evil of Thassilon shall end with you!"

Acrobatics to Avoid AoO: 1d20 + 25 ⇒ (9) + 25 = 34

Golembane Scarab Defensive kick!: 1d20 + 18 - 2 + 2 + 2 ⇒ (8) + 18 - 2 + 2 + 2 = 28
Damage on hit: 2d8 + 5 ⇒ (1, 3) + 5 = 9


The Flaxseed Pathfinder Lodge

Miana dives down into the pit and kicks the golem in the face, sending it toppling backwards into the acid yet again. As the acid dissolves some of the stone, it is clear that something is wrong with it. Karzoug's voice bellows out from the golem again: "This… this is not the last… come then, heroes. Seek me atop Mhar Massif, if you value life so poorly. You should be honored to be the first fools executed under the banner of Shalast in ten thousand…" The golem then slowly reverts to a simple stone statue and ceases moving.

Ok, now we're officially done with book 5. Woo! Plans?

Silver Crusade

Female Suli Paladin 3/ Monk-Un 4/ CoI 10 | HP 181/181 | AC 28 (39)* T 28 (30) FF 24 (35)* | F +22 R +20 W +21* (22) | CMD 48 | Init +4 | Perc +20 | Smite 3/3 Lay on Hands 12/12 Stunning Fist 14/14 Elemental Assault 17/17 Ki Points 13/14 Inevitable Fist 17/17

First, have our little tinker mouse make some new stuff! With her blessing and awesomeness, of course.

Then, go back to our contacts to confirm where Mhar Massif is.

Then, kick some Thassilonian ass :)


The Flaxseed Pathfinder Lodge

Check, check, check!

The party is now quite adept at transportation magic and return to Sandpoint is as easy as casting a simple spell. You then make your way to Brodert Quink, who should know something about the mysteries you have uncovered. "Ah yes, Mhar Massif," he says when you mention the name. "That is an interesting topic and if I were not so advanced in years or at least as capable as you all have become, I would not hesitate to follow along. But as it, time marches on and I am perhaps more comfortable in our small town with my books, anyhow."

Brodert leans back and begins again, "Now Mhar Massif is said to be a towering mountain upon which the city of Xin-Shalast rests. It is said to be in a valley that lies at the headwaters of the River Avah. The mountain itself is said to serve as a bridge to strange realms beyond Golarion. Now where all this is exactly located is a matter of much debate, for clearly the bridge to other realms must extend beyond the mountain-perhaps the mountain itself is not even of Golarion! But it is said that anyone who can find the River Avah can follow it directly into Xin-Shalast. The problems is that the whole region is a bit... frayed at the edges, so you'll need-at the very least-some more guidance or information from someone who has been to Xin-Shalast before...."

Brodert then snaps his fingers as if remembering something and begins rummaging through scrolls and papers. "I seem to remember an old account of a pair of dwarven brothers who claimed to have discovered the route to the fabled city... ah yes! Here it is!"

He holds up a letter. "This was written to me by the author of the definitive encyclopedia on the region of Varisia and the Storval Plateau: Cervil "Redwing" Charm, who penned Eidolon."

The letter reads:

Salutations, Mr. Quink!

Thank you again for the kind words and drink. It’s always a pleasure to speak with readers of my work, especially those well read and civilized enough to know of my writing beyond Eidolon. Alas, I was unable to procure a copy of the early draft from my personal files. It would seem that it has gone the way of so much of my early work, lost forever to the gulfs of time and narrow-minded publishers unable to grasp the import of a young Pathfinder’s work.

Fortunately, my mind is as quick now as it was in those early days of my explorations of your fantastic homeland. I recall the evening I first heard the story of Xin-Shalast, while seated on a log in a Varisian camp, sharing ruby mead with an enchanting young woman. Ah, but that’s a story for other times.

I was intrigued by the tale, though. All peoples have tales of “cities of gold,” yet with Xin-Shalast, the Varisians had no tradition of explorers seeking it. They viewed the place as one of evil, a place to be feared and forsaken. As far as I could tell, none of your indigenous people ever sought out the ruins before the advent of Chelish rule. But there was mention, come to think of it, of two dwarven brothers. Vekker, I think their names were. Claimed to have found the route to Xin-Shalast and convinced several tradesmen in Janderhoff to support and supply their plan to establish a base of operations in the low Kodar Mountains along the Kazaron. Their vanishing into the Kodars bankrupted all but one of their investors, I hear, and even today, the Vekker name is generally accompanied by a litany of rousing dwarven profanity when it comes up in ’Hoffian taverns.

In the stead of enclosing a copy of the early, complete draft of my work, though, please find a signed copy of Eidolon with this missive. I trust it will look quite handsome on your shelf.

In good health,

Redwing

"You see," Brodert continues after you have looked it over, "it concerns the escapes of two dwarven brothers, Silas and Karivek Vekker, who journeyed into the Kodar Mountains and supposedly discovered the route to Xin-Shalast. I've done my own research and they did indeed abscond with a fair amount of invested capital into the mountains. The common theory out of Janderhoff was that the dwarves used the "discovery" as a cover for a con, but those who knew them held them in quite high regard so I suspect that they did indeed discover the city and their secrecy was born more out of necessity rather than malice. I suspect they met some sort of foul end in the Kodars, as their tale ends there, but if their base of operations could be found (along the banks of the Kazaron River, as Redwing's letter implies), perhaps there might be some clues to the city's location."


Spell Effects:
heroism, false life, mage armor, mind blank, overland flight
Stats:
Wizard 17 | HP 121/121| AC:19 T:19 FF:15 CMD: 23 | F+13 R+13 W+15 | Init +11 | Per +24 (darkvision)

"Yes, Master Quink, we have found a number of tomes chhh referencing this dimension of Leng already. None of them seem to paint the location in a flattering light - we will simply have to face one problem at a time, however."

"If finding these brother's squeak base is what is required, then that is what we shall do. We also read of Rune Giants in the ancient tomes, leading tribes of giants in the ancient city of Xin-shalast cities - I wonder if such creatures persist in that place? Perhaps, friends, we might spend some time learning what lore we chhh can regarding those forgotten creatures, as well as the dimension of Leng?"


Giant Slayer 17| HP 241/241 (214/292) |20% MC AC:23 T:15 FF:21 CMD: 41(45) | F+21 R+15 W+12 | Init +2 | Per +27

"If Xin-Shalast is on another plane, do we know how to get to it. Leng doesn't sound like a fun place. And Karzoug is a runelord right? What's this about Rune giants? Xin-Shalast is a city full of giants?"

Sealman's eyes squint and he pouts his lips as he shakes his head in an aggressive manner.


Spell Effects:
heroism, false life, mage armor, mind blank, overland flight
Stats:
Wizard 17 | HP 121/121| AC:19 T:19 FF:15 CMD: 23 | F+13 R+13 W+15 | Init +11 | Per +24 (darkvision)

"Ten thousand years ago the city was likely filled with giants. Is it now? Perhaps, perhaps not; perhaps the place is merely dead. Runes are magic made manifest, but the Runelords were said to use runes to bind and control others, including giants. Consider the Sihedron markings we have seen so many marked with in the cities - those marks are being used to channel spiritual energy into Karzoug or his devices. I imagine the runes upon a giant would share some things in common - binding, controlling, powering, and so forth."

Silver Crusade

Female Suli Paladin 3/ Monk-Un 4/ CoI 10 | HP 181/181 | AC 28 (39)* T 28 (30) FF 24 (35)* | F +22 R +20 W +21* (22) | CMD 48 | Init +4 | Perc +20 | Smite 3/3 Lay on Hands 12/12 Stunning Fist 14/14 Elemental Assault 17/17 Ki Points 13/14 Inevitable Fist 17/17

Miana is pleased to return to Sandpoint. It is the first place since she started her travels she's considered a home. She visits the new school and monastery she founded, checking in on Sensei Saitama on his upbringing of Varisian youths enrolled.

She then joins the others in meeting with Lucian's teacher and mentor, Brodert Quink, who sheds some light on the next task at hand to finally ending the Runelord threat in the area.

"Thank you for your find, hopefully we can find these brothers' last location and retrace their steps to Xin-Shalast."


The Flaxseed Pathfinder Lodge

Rune giants:

DC 27 Knowledge (local):

---

The Kodar Mountains are one of Golarion’s most intimidating and massive mountain ranges. Few places in the world are more inhospitable to life than these mountains, yet life endures here. The extremes make for equally powerful monsters and denizens, of course—only the strongest survive for long in this region, known to the Shoanti as the World’s Roof.

New Maps! In the "Northeast Varisia" map, you are approximately at point A.

Traveling this far up the Kazaron River, you can’t miss the cabin built of split logs cemented with a rough mortar and a shake shingle roof. The logs and shingles are decades old, and a profusion of lichens growing on these walls gives it a strangely organic look. You move in closer to investigate:

A split-log tower abuts the cliff face and rises from a workshop on ground level to a larger cabin perched on the cliff’s edge sixty feet above. The rough wooden structure is so overgrown with lichen as to almost appear an extension of the rock face. The ground to the south of the lower structure is a steep embankment, over which a chute protrudes from the structure’s southern wall. At the base of the embankment is a large pile of fine, black sand that spreads out in a deposit striated by years of erosion. The ground surrounding the pile is barren of any plant life, with the exception of a single sagging pine tree. Faint traces of a footpath lead to the workhouse doors, though it is obvious none have come this way in many years.

Soon after you near the cabin, a mournful, drawn-out shriek not unlike the cry of a dying elk is heard echoing over the area.

DC 27 Knowledge (planes):
You identify the sound as supernatural and likely from an outsider at least a mile away.

DC 37 Knowledge (planes):
The howl was likely that of the dreaded wendigo!


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Giant Slayer 17| HP 241/241 (214/292) |20% MC AC:23 T:15 FF:21 CMD: 41(45) | F+21 R+15 W+12 | Init +2 | Per +27

Knowledge Local: 1d20 + 11 + 4 ⇒ (12) + 11 + 4 = 27

Sealman drops mad knowledge on Rune Giants. After shuffling to put on some spectacles without any glass in them, the Giantslayer recites what he knows in a perfect High Taldan accent.

"They like to charm and dominate. That's not good. And they can Air Walk as well. Also not good. We may need to keep some more Fly spells or if Rissi can craft another pair of Winged Boots, that would be useful. Or a carpet of flying, that would be fun.

Rune Giants are immune to Cold, Fire & Electricity. They actually emanate sparks of electricity in battle meant to blind those nearby. Like a dragon, their Runes produce cones of both fire and electricity as dangerous as two of Rissi's fireballs."

Sealman removes his glasses and draws Isoult.

"But then again, you have us."


Spell Effects:
heroism, false life, mage armor, mind blank, overland flight
Stats:
Wizard 17 | HP 121/121| AC:19 T:19 FF:15 CMD: 23 | F+13 R+13 W+15 | Init +11 | Per +24 (darkvision)

1d20 + 27 ⇒ (7) + 27 = 34
1d20 + 27 ⇒ (8) + 27 = 35

"I do believe the shrieking originator from a *chhh* creature not of this world - quite distrubing in deed."


Male Human (Varisian) Oracle (Lore) 8, Evangelist 10 | HP 165/165 | AC:36 T:20 FF:29 CMD: 30 | F+13 R+22 W+24 (+2 vs transmutation) | Init +5 | Per +25 (+4 to determine whether he's surprised), Darkvision 60ft

Lucian is overjoyed at the thought of travelling back to Sandpoint and reporting his findings on the Runeforge to his old master.

"Master Quick! You'll never believe what we have found. The Runeforge was in fact a giant research lab where the Runelords had sent their apprentices. Of course it proved vastly corrupted by the seven sins, but we were able to find very valuable tomes and information about Thassilon!" enthusiastically explains Lucian, before entertaining his old master with detailed tales of their delve into the Runeforge until late in the night... and the night after that.

****

The young Varisian appears to have regained much of his good mood as the journey into the Kodar mountains starts. Or maybe is it a recent visit to the Rusty Dragon that bolstered his spirits for the ordeals to come?

"These dwarves can't be still alive here, from the looks of this cabin. We'd better investigate it to see if they left anything behind. A map, perhaps? In any case, the cabin will prove a boon against the bad weather."

Then he prods Sealman to follow the footpath leading to the workhouse doors.


The Flaxseed Pathfinder Lodge

On the back side of the cabin (the northern room) is a storage room which nothing more than wheelbarows, shovels, picks, and other gear all covered in a thick layer of frost.

Back around at the front entry, there is a room (SW room) with a bare plank floor. Off of this, separated by a rotten curtain, is a small barren chamber with a wood-frame cot and a rough, straw-tick mattress and threadbare blanket. A pair of old work boots, crusted with the dried remains of old mud, still sit under the cot. Hidden in the left boot is a +3 punching dagger.

The next room (to the east) has a putrid smell. The back wall is the solid rock of the cliff face behind. Mounds of dust and rocky debris clutter the floor, while rusty mechanical equipment, large copper tanks, and several rock-crushing and chipping tools sit upon sagging wooden tables. The handle of a shovel sticks up from a debris pile immediately below this aperture. Two pairs of elbow-length, thick leather gloves, stained from long use, hang from hooks beside the north doors.

As you enter the room, everyone sees the shadowy image of a dwarf crouching in the corner....

DC 18 Knowledge (religion):
Yep, a haunt. If you beat a 10 on initiative, you can take a surprise-round action to do something about it.


Male Human (Varisian) Oracle (Lore) 8, Evangelist 10 | HP 165/165 | AC:36 T:20 FF:29 CMD: 30 | F+13 R+22 W+24 (+2 vs transmutation) | Init +5 | Per +25 (+4 to determine whether he's surprised), Darkvision 60ft

With +18 in Knowledge (religion), auto-success.
Initiative: 1d20 + 5 ⇒ (13) + 5 = 18

As the ghastly-looking dwarf manifests, Lucian yells alarmingly.

"Careful, a haunt! Desna, bring your starlight to this forsaken place."

Channel Energy: 7d6 ⇒ (5, 6, 3, 2, 4, 2, 6) = 28


Spell Effects:
heroism, false life, mage armor, mind blank, overland flight
Stats:
Wizard 17 | HP 121/121| AC:19 T:19 FF:15 CMD: 23 | F+13 R+13 W+15 | Init +11 | Per +24 (darkvision)

"Quickly! Restless spirits within!"

Having nothing to fight ghosts with easily, the ratfolk simply backpedals hastily. 40' fly move

EDIT rolls: religion: 1d20 + 27 ⇒ (20) + 27 = 47 initiative: 1d20 + 11 ⇒ (19) + 11 = 30


Giant Slayer 17| HP 241/241 (214/292) |20% MC AC:23 T:15 FF:21 CMD: 41(45) | F+21 R+15 W+12 | Init +2 | Per +27

Sealman falls back to uh... defend Rissi. Yah that's it, defend the mage.

Silver Crusade

Female Suli Paladin 3/ Monk-Un 4/ CoI 10 | HP 181/181 | AC 28 (39)* T 28 (30) FF 24 (35)* | F +22 R +20 W +21* (22) | CMD 48 | Init +4 | Perc +20 | Smite 3/3 Lay on Hands 12/12 Stunning Fist 14/14 Elemental Assault 17/17 Ki Points 13/14 Inevitable Fist 17/17

Init: 1d20 + 4 ⇒ (10) + 4 = 14

If Lucian ' s holy aura fails to stop it, Miana will call for Irori to bless her touch with his goodness.

Lay on Hands: 8d6 ⇒ (2, 3, 3, 5, 3, 6, 6, 5) = 33

-Posted with Wayfinder


The Flaxseed Pathfinder Lodge

Lucian is quick to react and luckily puts the haunt to rest before it can do anything harmful!

Phew!

The next room over is less a room and more of a mining shaft. A sturdy-looking wooden stair and rail start at the bottom and circle up into the heights, running clockwise. Above, its passage is lost in the gloom, like the musty interior of an ancient silo. A thick length of chain hangs down the shaft in loops, its links swaying and clanking softly to the periodic gust of wind that penetrates the walls. No windows pierce the wooden walls. Propped against the east wall near the door is an upended wheelbarrow.

---

Heading up the stairs, you eventually come to a loft with a heavy winch bolted to the balcony. There is a single door, through which is a short hallway that contains another tiny curtained chamber, this one with a wooden bench with an assortment of shabby foot gear and a row of hooks above, some of which hold dusty garments. A +2 construct bane earth breaker leans against the wall.

Down the hall is a small room which obviously doubled as the main living quarters and kitchen for the inhabitants. A stone hearth and chimney occupy the corner and an iron hook holds a cauldron above the grate. The rest of the room is in a horrific state-firewood, cooking utensils, pots and pans, and even the furniture lie in scattered heaps. A painting of two dour-looking dwarves standing in front of an enormous elk hangs askew on the northern wall. Ancient bloodstains mar the walls and floor and bits of overturned furniture here and there, but there are no bodies.

DC 18 Wisdom check:
You notice sudden twinges of unnatural hunger....

DC 18 Knowledge (religion) to recognize it as a haunt, then you can take a surprise round action if you beat a 10 on initiative.


Male Human (Varisian) Oracle (Lore) 8, Evangelist 10 | HP 165/165 | AC:36 T:20 FF:29 CMD: 30 | F+13 R+22 W+24 (+2 vs transmutation) | Init +5 | Per +25 (+4 to determine whether he's surprised), Darkvision 60ft

Wis: 1d20 ⇒ 5

"This place looks grim... I sure would like to know what happened here. I assume the two dwarves are the Vekker brothers?"


Giant Slayer 17| HP 241/241 (214/292) |20% MC AC:23 T:15 FF:21 CMD: 41(45) | F+21 R+15 W+12 | Init +2 | Per +27

Wisdom Check: 1d20 + 1 ⇒ (4) + 1 = 5

Sealman picks up the earthbraker and admires it with one hand.

"Construct bane, you say? Now that is ominous."

Sealman checks for tracks leading up to the cottage and within the dwelling to see if anybody has been here lately.

Tracking: 1d20 + 19 ⇒ (12) + 19 = 31 +6 vs giants, +2 vs magical beasts


Spell Effects:
heroism, false life, mage armor, mind blank, overland flight
Stats:
Wizard 17 | HP 121/121| AC:19 T:19 FF:15 CMD: 23 | F+13 R+13 W+15 | Init +11 | Per +24 (darkvision)

1d20 + 1 ⇒ (7) + 1 = 8

"A tragedy. That is an ill wind that *squeak* blows here."

When Rissi looks at the painting, she seems intrigued. "I do not recall any mention of an elk in the tale of the brothers. "

Silver Crusade

Female Suli Paladin 3/ Monk-Un 4/ CoI 10 | HP 181/181 | AC 28 (39)* T 28 (30) FF 24 (35)* | F +22 R +20 W +21* (22) | CMD 48 | Init +4 | Perc +20 | Smite 3/3 Lay on Hands 12/12 Stunning Fist 14/14 Elemental Assault 17/17 Ki Points 13/14 Inevitable Fist 17/17

Wisdom: 1d20 + 5 ⇒ (11) + 5 = 16

"This is peculiar, but I cannot put my finger on it..."


The Flaxseed Pathfinder Lodge

Suddenly everyone in the room is stricken with terrible hunger pangs that can not be ignored! Accompanying this ravenous sensation is the conviction that only the flesh of your companions can sate the hunger!

DC 20 Fortitude saves to resist taking 10d6 points of nonlethal starvation damage from the sudden phantom hunger. If you take starvation damage you must then make a DC 20 Will save to resist taking 2d6 points of Wisdom drain as the cannibal urgings overwhelm you and drive you to the brink of madness!


Giant Slayer 17| HP 241/241 (214/292) |20% MC AC:23 T:15 FF:21 CMD: 41(45) | F+21 R+15 W+12 | Init +2 | Per +27

Fort Save: 1d20 + 18 ⇒ (19) + 18 = 37

Sealman nervously, slowly backs up until he hits one of the walls.

"Friends, why are you looking at me like that? My Rissi, what big eyes you have. You all know I'm sorry about eating the last piece of pie. It couldn't go to waste ...."


Spell Effects:
heroism, false life, mage armor, mind blank, overland flight
Stats:
Wizard 17 | HP 121/121| AC:19 T:19 FF:15 CMD: 23 | F+13 R+13 W+15 | Init +11 | Per +24 (darkvision)

"I made that pie - yes I used magic but I made it... it's SQUEAK MY PIE!"

Rissi looks desperate for a moment, clutching her stomach and then diving for Sealman's ankles.

fort: 1d20 + 13 ⇒ (6) + 13 = 19
wis: 1d20 + 14 ⇒ (5) + 14 = 19
Now I just feel taunted
wisdom: 10d6 ⇒ (3, 4, 2, 2, 6, 6, 4, 3, 2, 2) = 34
drain: 2d6 ⇒ (5, 5) = 10

Silver Crusade

Female Suli Paladin 3/ Monk-Un 4/ CoI 10 | HP 181/181 | AC 28 (39)* T 28 (30) FF 24 (35)* | F +22 R +20 W +21* (22) | CMD 48 | Init +4 | Perc +20 | Smite 3/3 Lay on Hands 12/12 Stunning Fist 14/14 Elemental Assault 17/17 Ki Points 13/14 Inevitable Fist 17/17

Is it a Nat 1 Fort?: 1d20 ⇒ 4

Closer than I prefer, but safe!

@Rissi: And yes, those saves... bah.


Giant Slayer 17| HP 241/241 (214/292) |20% MC AC:23 T:15 FF:21 CMD: 41(45) | F+21 R+15 W+12 | Init +2 | Per +27

Sealman tries to dodge out of the way from Rissi but finds himself trapped in the corner. He tries to claw his way up the corner to escape but is unable to gain purchase.

AAAAAIIIIIEEEE!!" the dwarf cries out in a high pitched squeal.


Male Human (Varisian) Oracle (Lore) 8, Evangelist 10 | HP 165/165 | AC:36 T:20 FF:29 CMD: 30 | F+13 R+22 W+24 (+2 vs transmutation) | Init +5 | Per +25 (+4 to determine whether he's surprised), Darkvision 60ft

Fort: 1d20 + 14 ⇒ (17) + 14 = 31

Lucian grits his teeth, having trouble resisting the powerful urge swelling inside him.

"Careful, friends, the dark souls of this place threaten to engulf us all!"


The Flaxseed Pathfinder Lodge

Aaaaaand 4000 posts!

Kufieno Fort: 1d20 + 11 ⇒ (4) + 11 = 15
nonlethal damage: 10d6 ⇒ (1, 6, 1, 2, 6, 4, 2, 3, 2, 4) = 31
Will: 1d20 + 10 ⇒ (12) + 10 = 22

The cannibalistic hunger pangs luckily pass shortly. You decide to check the next room to the west. This bare-floored room has a series of iron hooks suspended from the rafters. The window in the far wall looks out over the edge of the cliff and, unlike others in the cabin, has no glass or shutters-only a tight lattice of iron bars. Against the far wall sits a four-foot-tall mound of bones-dwarven bones, by the look of them.

DC 25 Perception:
You hear the rising whispers and slobbering grunts of the hungry dead....

DC 24 KN (religion) to know this is a haunt, then beat a 10 Initiative to take a surprise round action before it goes off.

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