GM SpiderBeard's Curse of the Crimson Throne

Game Master Barvo Delancy

Chapter 3: Escape from Old Korvosa

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Male CG Halfling Investigator 10 | HP: 57/57 | AC: 19 (16 FF, 14 Tch) | CMB: 6, CMD: 19, FF: 16 | F: +7, R: +12, W: +10 | Init: +7 (+9 urban)| Perc: +15 | Locate Traps +20 | Disarm Traps +20 | Speed 20ft | Inspiration 7/8 | Harrow Points: 3 | +6 vs Poison, +2 vs Fear, +3 vs Traps | Active effects: Heroism, Heightened Awareness (+2 attacks, saves, skills; further +2 Perception & Knowledge)

Donnell will happily go along with you to see the Archbanker (assuming we get an audience) - I was wondering how we were going to repay that debt as well. He will advise against mentioning the Queen in any capacity however - she is clamping down on the city and we shouldn't be too overt about our feelings toward her. But he's on board with the rest of it and, to that end:

Diplomacy: 1d20 + 14 + 1d6 ⇒ (3) + 14 + (1) = 18

Like Sevenspawn, Donnell is uninterested in fine clothing or artwork, and will first try to convince the artisans to support the poorer folks in the Midlands or Old K. If they will not be deterred, then he will accept their gifts graciously, and store them in the treasure chest until he can quietly offload them to one or another of his contacts.

Any downtime that is not spent working on the cure or on reorganizing the alchemical business with Raven Six, Donnell will spend redesigning traps and locks for Zellara's house and the party treasure chest, and restocking his supply of poisons and alchemical supplies (@GM: I'll have to find out how much time we have to spend on these things to know whether Donnell can craft them himself, or if there's a maximum DC that he can purchase in town).


NG Male Dwarven Barbarian 10 | HP 115/115 {145/145} | AC 21 (19 Rage, 12 Touch, 20 Flat-Footed) | CMB +14/+16, CMD 25/27 | Fort. +13/16, Ref. +6, Will +10/12 | Init. +2 | Perc. +15 | Speed 30ft | Rage: 14/25 | DR 2/- | Active conditions: N/A

Thod is uncomfortable being the center of attention with the numerous celebrations and parties. He accepts the invites, more out of a feeling of duty than wanting to be adored. He attempts to deflect the accolades, claiming he's 'just a strong back and a good weapon, nothing special,' downplaying his contributions and directing most praise to his friends. This comes across more as modesty and does little to suppress the praise.

Even celebrations at the numerous taverns, while initially much easier for Thod to manage with boisterous drinking contests and various other games of skill, become a bit overwhelming after some time, and Thod takes up drinking back at Zelarra's house.

He does accept the gifts, and figures decorating his room wouldn't hurt. The commissions are tempting, though considering how regularly he's had to upgrade his gear, he settles for simple art items, notably a personalized mess kit, and some fancy flasks.

At least accepting the award from Croft was easy enough, falling back on following guard protocol. Simply stand at attention, look dutiful, bow at the right time.

======

Thod isn't expecting much walking through the citadel's armoury. But something does catch his eye. Hanging on the wall is an elaborate, gleaming halberd, decorated with runes.

"What's that doing there?" Thod asks the quartermaster overseeing him.

"A magical halberd we came in posession of some time ago. Belonged to a mercenary who became a guard captain in retirement. Had no family, so we claimed it. It's too valuable to give to any ol' guard, and once most soldiers get skilled and proficient enough to be issued magic weapons, they prefer swords or axes."

"How much do you want for it?"

"After what you've done for the city? Thing's just been sitting there collecting dust, too valuable to sell but too fancy to use. Go ahead, you can have it. Least I can do."

"Oh! Uh, thanks!"

======

While the rest of the group busies itself with their own projects, Thod decides to focus on fortifying one of their backup hideouts, especially as even Thod can sense the city being forced to turn against them. Talking to the dwarves he's been able to make friends with at the taverns, Thod looks for clandestine masons and builders to fortify their hidden redoubt in the Dead Warrens. Especially as the group has gathered enough alchemical equipment to set up multiple labs.


.

Raven Six starts doing her errands. The first is offering a homunculus servant to Cressida. She looks at the strange young woman curiously before nodding once. "Considering how many guards I'm losing as the Gray Maidens grow in power, I will take any resources I can get. Thank you."

---

The conversation with the Archbanker takes a few days to get. Despite being celebrates heroes of the city, the Bank remains in turmoil.

Finally, you, and any others who wish to attend are granted a meeting. He looks keenly at Raven Six as she speaks, his bushy eyebrows furrowed.

"I have to admit you lot have impressed me. The deal is the deal and shall remain as it is, but you are in the favour of the Bank of Abadar. The debt of 12,000 must stand but as agreed we expect payments of 600 gold per month until the debt is paid off. You name and run the business as you so choose. Frankly the nobles of this city will be terrified of disease - a good time to ensure they are well-stocked on antiplague. As for Her Majesty... I'll just say I agree. My intention is to pass our involvement with the - Factorium you say? The Factorium to an underling, perhaps Ishani since you've worked with him in the past."

He lets out a long breath and looks at you once more.

"One complication. Your factory is on the island. Old Korvosa remains under quarantine and we do not have an easy pass on that. We were able to pull every possible favour we had to get the cure manufactured and circulated, but with the plague dying down, those favours are eroded. If you want to turn a profit, you're going to have to figure out a way to do so because your intended clientele are on the mainland. Good luck."


.

The Dead Warrens are located in the Gray which is formally owned by the Church of Pharasma. However, they're very happy to let you squat and use the land as you wish considering how it was turned into a deranged murder-factory by Rolth.

The Warrens have just two entrances, but one of them is a mystery - a narrow tunnel leading eastwards and underground. It goes on a ways and has not been explored by anyone.

Map of the Dead Warrens is up. You guys now have three holdings of a sort. Eel's End (which the Dead Kings are operating out of), the Dead Warrens, and Zellara's Home.


.

Chapter 3: Escape From Old Korvosa

The past week has been one of frenzied activity as the group have split into various personal projects to fortify your holdings and help the needy. You haven't all been in the same place for several days, but an appointed time to get together at Zellara's home and figure out what next has come. You all enter her home, this time carefully bypassing a trap Donnell has set up, and settle in to talk about what to do next.

As you sit, Raven Six has begun playing with Zellara's Harrow Deck without even quite realizing it, and within seconds she has manifested.

"I thought you would never take the hint," she says warmly. "Korvosa is saved of its plague, but not of its Queen. I have seen what you have seen and it is clear the city is ruled by a cruel tyrant. To what end... I do not know. But I know you, Sevenspawn, and I know what your goddess commands you do of tyrants. The plague is gone but the city grows sicker. Let us see what the cards say."

She looks around with a bit of a grin. "I appreciate what you've done to my home. It feels safe here, if not quite so welcoming as it once was."

The image of the long-dead fortune teller begins to deftly shuffle cards before showing nine cards before you, asking you each to pick from the face-down cards. She reveals them as you select.

Raven Six selects The Hidden Truth.

Sevenspawn selects the Joke.

Thod selects The Idiot.

Donnell selects The Wanderer.

She nods and then returns the card before shuffling and producing the Harrow Spread:

GM Rolls:

Card 1: 1d6 ⇒ 21d9 ⇒ 6 = DEX N (The Peacock)
Card 2: 1d6 ⇒ 21d9 ⇒ 2 = DEX LN (The Locksmith)
Card 3: 1d6 ⇒ 11d9 ⇒ 7 = STR NE (The Beating
Card 4: 1d6 ⇒ 41d9 ⇒ 9 = INT CE (The SNakebite)
Card 5: 1d6 ⇒ 41d9 ⇒ 2 = INT LN (The Inquisitor)

THE IDIOT | THE RAKSASHA | THE SNAKEBITE
THE LOCKSMITH | THE WANDERER | THE INQUISITOR
THE PEACOCK | THE JOKE | THE HIDDEN TRUTH

She lays out the cards and begins to read to them.

"On the left here, we show the past and we also see Thod's card. Here the card is not aligned, which indicates a clever feigning of idiocy. But the question is whose? The locksmith represents keys to a new destiny, which is perfectly aligned. Perhaps a little obvious for the cards but you must ask now - what is your new destiny? What is your purpose? Finally, the Peacock. A sudden shift and abrupt change, one which is both personal and external."

"The Rakshasa is a powerful card to see here. Dominance, mind control, and deception. This card may symbolize Korvosa's plight more than any other. This is our reality, now. Take heed of this card. The Wanderer is also well-placed and indicates finding worth in cast-offs. This is Donnell's card and advice you should take. Seek those who have been discarded for they will have the greater worth, much like yourself perhaps? And the Joke, Sevenspawn's card..."

She taps the card and stares at the cleric meaningfully. "A joke has been played on you my friend, and you are the butt of it and may not find it very funny. What is that Joke? What cruel irony has befallen you?"

She moves her hand to the future. "The snakebite indicates poisonous ideas. Yours? The city's? We shall see, but beware of what information comes to you. The Inquisitor is the sign of immutable reality, of scales falling from eyes to reveal this last card, which is Raven Six's."

Her hand slaps on the Hidden Truth as she looks to Raven Six. "There is a dangerous secret in your future my dearest, and I feel there are many hidden truths to be near revealed. Personally, as well as in the city itself."

She looks to all of you. "I see your futures as being embattled against not just physical foes, but those which are insidious or inrdirect. However, you are strong and I am confident you will overcome. "

She lets you take in the cards for a moment before snapping them back up to shuffle into the deck. "Listen, a town crier..."

And she vanishes. True to her word, you hear a crier in the street.

"HEAR YE! QUEEN ILEOSA ANNOUNCES THE END OF THE PLAGUE! ALL CITIZENS WHO WISH TO HEAR HER GLORIOUS VOICE ARE TO ATTEND TO EODRED'S SQUARE WITHIN THE HOUR!"

Everyone has three Harrow POints due to drawing three int cards this time around. I'll give you what they can be used for in discussion in a bit.


NG Male Dwarven Barbarian 10 | HP 115/115 {145/145} | AC 21 (19 Rage, 12 Touch, 20 Flat-Footed) | CMB +14/+16, CMD 25/27 | Fort. +13/16, Ref. +6, Will +10/12 | Init. +2 | Perc. +15 | Speed 30ft | Rage: 14/25 | DR 2/- | Active conditions: N/A

"Hey!"

Thod grunts in annoyance, rather insulted at the 'Idiot' card, though doesn't interrupt the reading otherwise.

He has a sour look on his face after the reading.

"Well, that was a kick in the crotch. I get insulted, and we hear a bunch of mumbo-jumbo that doesn't mean anything. Any of you feel better? 'Cause I sure don't."

Thod grumbles at the crier.

"And I bet bad news is waiting for us there, too. Hopefully it isn't in the form of a bunch of swords drawn at us. Let's stay to the back."


Male CG Human Cleric 10 HP: 82/72 I AC: 22 (11 Tch, 21Fl) | CMB: 10, CMD: 20 | F: +8, R: +5, W: +11 | Init: +4 | Perc: +5 Speed 20ft | Channel 4/4 | Spells 6/6 6/6 5/5 4/4 4/4 3/3 |
Thod wrote:

"Well, that was a kick in the crotch. I get insulted, and we hear a bunch of mumbo-jumbo that doesn't mean anything. Any of you feel better? 'Cause I sure don't."

Thod grumbles at the crier.

"And I bet bad news is waiting for us there, too. Hopefully it isn't in the form of a bunch of swords drawn at us. Let's stay to the back."

"There is at least something to be gleaned within it, I reckon. 'Insidious and indirect' enemies were foreseen... is there someone greater at work here...? The Arkonas, perhaps...?""

He furrows his brow. "And a joke at my expense... I do not know what that is, either. My street name is a joke of sorts, but I do not see how that fits. I do not know why I think of it." He notes their brief confusion and pushes on easily. "I have seven potential fathers, hence 'seven-spawn' or 'spawn of seven', but my clerical mentor suggested it could just as easily mean 'seven's-pawn', or 'pawn of seven'." He shrugs. "I'm sure it is nothing. Let us go see our monarch... from the back, as Thod suggests."


Female Android Alchemist 8/Rogue 2; Init +2; Darkvision 60 ft, Low-light vision, Perception +18; AC 21 (+2 Dex., +5 armour, +2 natural, +4 Shield); hp 70/70; Fort +8; Ref +11; Will +4

"Unpleasant revelations in our future… and my personal future," Raven Six muses. "Hmm. After we have returned from this proclamation, it might be as well to use my own divinations. Perhaps this time, I may find us some useful information."


Male CG Halfling Investigator 10 | HP: 57/57 | AC: 19 (16 FF, 14 Tch) | CMB: 6, CMD: 19, FF: 16 | F: +7, R: +12, W: +10 | Init: +7 (+9 urban)| Perc: +15 | Locate Traps +20 | Disarm Traps +20 | Speed 20ft | Inspiration 7/8 | Harrow Points: 3 | +6 vs Poison, +2 vs Fear, +3 vs Traps | Active effects: Heroism, Heightened Awareness (+2 attacks, saves, skills; further +2 Perception & Knowledge)
Sevenspawn wrote:
"'Insidious and indirect' enemies were foreseen... is there someone greater at work here...? The Arkonas, perhaps...?""

"Yes - or, perhaps this means the Queen?"

Sevenspawn wrote:
He furrows his brow. "And a joke at my expense... I do not know what that is, either."

Placing a hand on the cleric's arm, Donnell shakes his head sadly: [b]"Oh my friend - I didn't want to say so while you were in mourning, but I am very much afraid you were set up with regards to your king. By whom or what that means, I do not know, but rest assured we will figure it out together."

Looking over to the others, Donnell continues: "Or perhaps Thod is right, and divination is b@#&$+~s. Regardless, I think we'd best hurry on to see what fresh hell awaits at the hand of Ileosa."

Muttering under his breath: "At the very least, I'm sure she will take credit for all of our work."


Female Homunculus Init +2; darkvision 60 ft., low-light vision; Perception +3; AC 14 (touch 14, flat-footed 12 (+2 Dex, +2 size)); hp 11; Fort +0, Ref +4, Will +1

There is a fluttering in the room, and a winged creature the size of a cat comes flying into the room. It looks like a tiny little female, humanoid, but with batwings and a saurian tail. A perfectly formed little female; every detail correct and plainly visibly, due to a lack of clothing. She has bright red hair.

The little creature wings over to Raven Six and lands in her lap, where she looks up at the Alchemist.
"Field test now?" she asks, as she lazily kicks her legs, rather like a child sitting on a fence.


Female Android Alchemist 8/Rogue 2; Init +2; Darkvision 60 ft, Low-light vision, Perception +18; AC 21 (+2 Dex., +5 armour, +2 natural, +4 Shield); hp 70/70; Fort +8; Ref +11; Will +4

"Ah," Raven Six says, looking down at the little intruder with an apparent lack of concern. "You have completed your lessons?"

Looking up at the others, the Alchemist blinks with an expression of ... is that satisfaction? It's surprisingly feline, whatever it is.

"Gentlemen. Allow me to introduce you to my new creation. This is Specimen R6-a/H-001."


Female Homunculus Init +2; darkvision 60 ft., low-light vision; Perception +3; AC 14 (touch 14, flat-footed 12 (+2 Dex, +2 size)); hp 11; Fort +0, Ref +4, Will +1

"The 'one' means I'm first," the homunculus tells you, very seriously, "but that's a fib. Mistress grew a sister for Marshall Kroft, first. She gets to work for the city guard, which is all sorts of busy work, mistress says. That might be nice. To be useful is to have purpose, and purpose is life."


Female Android Alchemist 8/Rogue 2; Init +2; Darkvision 60 ft, Low-light vision, Perception +18; AC 21 (+2 Dex., +5 armour, +2 natural, +4 Shield); hp 70/70; Fort +8; Ref +11; Will +4

"You are mistaken," Raven Six corrects the little construct. "Your elder sibling is Specimen R6-a/H-000. You are numbered consecutively."

Another catlike blink of satisfaction.

"Specimen R6-a/H-000 was proof of concept. Specimen R6-a/H-001 is meant to explore the potential of the series."


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Female Homunculus Init +2; darkvision 60 ft., low-light vision; Perception +3; AC 14 (touch 14, flat-footed 12 (+2 Dex, +2 size)); hp 11; Fort +0, Ref +4, Will +1

"That means I haveta learn lessons and do field tests, so mistress can see what all I can do, and what needs to be improved for the next series of me," the homunculus explains, looking at Thod.


.

There's an awkward moment as Raven Six's tiny pal shows up before you decide to go see what the Queen has to say.

---

Despite only an hour's notice before the announcement, the crowd is teeming with people. Although it would normally be a fight for you to get a spot where Donnell and Thod can see over the crowd of humans, you're recognized and some people make way while others whisper thanks. The news that Doctor Davaulus was behind the plague all along has spread like the city through wildfire, and the Queen's response is expected to be very interesting.

Trumpets blare, and the Queen steps out along with her retinue. She is clad entirely in red and her crown is... new, with weaving fang-like spikes thrusting upwards. A murmur of confusion goes through the crowd as she steps forward. Gray Maidens encircle the crowd ominously.

Glad in the finest armour of the Gray Maidens is the Queen's bodyguard Sabina Merrin, and a new face at her side, an enormously fat man in robes. Donnell recognizes him as Togomor of the Acadamae, a senior wizard in the city. As well, you recognize two familiar faces at the Queen's side: the Field Marshal Cressida Kroft, and the commandant of the Sable Company, Marcus Endrin. The Sable Company are the city's elite strike force of hippogriff riders.

The crowd quiets and the Queen's voice rings out, with a wave of Togomor's hand it is enhanced to great volume.

"People of Korvosa, it is here we announce our victory against the greatest threat this city has faced to date - the plague of the blood veil. To our great horror, our own trusted physician Doctor Reiner Davaulus was revealed to be the architect of this plague along with foul Urgathoan cultists, selling both the illness and the cure. Rest assured brave citizens that Reiner Davaulus is dead and has been executed for his crimes against the city. A cure has now been found, and the plague is over!"

There's some enthusiastic cheering from the crowd at the news that Davaulus has been executed, although some whispers of derision.

"Yet our city lays wounded. As Queen and ruler of Korvosa, we are forced to make strong choices to ensure the future of this great city. The Order of the Nail, once our faithful Hellknight guardians from mother Cheliax, have shown their true colours and fled like cowards into Citadel Vraid. We can no longer rely on them for our protection.

"Worse, the Korvosan Guard and the Sable Company have suffered terrible losses from riots, plague, and worse. Neither group are capable of continuing as Korvosa's protectors. To shore up these... faults I am officially naming the Gray Maidens as the new protectors of Korvosa, and am appointing Sabina Merrin as the singular General of Korvosa!"

The entire crowd begin whispering in concern at once, the noise rippling through the area. The Queen has swept aside the three pillars of Korvosan defense and implemented her own private army.

She slowly extends a hand to the leader of the Sable Company, Commandant Endrin.

"As we well know, the care and feeding of hippogriff mounts is a great strain upon the city's coffers. As well, the Sable Company have shown themselves quite unable to deal with the city's unrest. Finally, the company's direct commander, Seneschal Neolandus Kalepopolis fled our city at its time of greatest need! As of now, I am naming Togomor as the new Seneschal of Korvosa, and we are disbanding the Sable Company. Commandant Endrin, step forth and surrender your badge of office!"

The whispers turn to shouts as the crowd see a popular figure in the city emascualted before the Queen. Marcus Endrin is visibly trembling as he removes a badge from his chest and a bow from his back. He stares at it before looking Ileosa dead in the eyes.

"Your shameful reign ends now! KORVOSA WILL BE FREE AGAIN!!!" The Queen freezes in shock, and Endrin raises the bow, snapping an arrow into place and shooting the Queen directly into the temple. It sinks deep into her skull.

Yet she does not fall.

With incredible speed, she regains her composure and yanks free the arrow. As the blood from the wound pours down to her jaw, she stalks towards Endrin. Her free hand whips out and seizes him by the throat, lifting him off the ground and holding him up for all to see. An instant later, she stabs Endrin’s own
arrow up under his jaw and out the side of his face with a spray of blood.
As Endrin’s body crumples to the ground and Ileosa imperiously shakes his blood from her hand, she cries out in a strong, clear voice,

"This shall be the fate of all enemies of Korvosa! Mark well his punishment! IT IS ONLY THE FIRST!"

The crowd breaks into shouting and pushing and within seconds the Gray Maidens have their swords drawn as they attempt to quell the riot.

Let me know anything you want to try to observe during this scene, checks you want to make, or a response to the riot breaking out.


Female Android Alchemist 8/Rogue 2; Init +2; Darkvision 60 ft, Low-light vision, Perception +18; AC 21 (+2 Dex., +5 armour, +2 natural, +4 Shield); hp 70/70; Fort +8; Ref +11; Will +4

If the whole event takes at least 10 minutes, Raven Six starts to focus on the queen… and tries to read her alignment aura.

Perception check: 1d20 + 14 ⇒ (14) + 14 = 28

"Feigned idiocy," Raven Six muses, seemingly talking to herself while the Queen speaks. Then, when Ileosa mentions the former seneschal Neolandus, Raven Six blinks -- and whispers at the others: "Something… or someone 'cast off'?"

When Commandant Endrin is brutally murdered and the riot breaks out, Raven Six looks to the others.
"Now?" is all she asks, one hand lowering to a bomb-vial hanging from her belt. "Is it now?"


.

30' is kinda close but I'll say Raven Six got that close since the crowd is kind of deferential to you guys.

Raven Six focuses on her and as she stares, she is forced to turn away. For a moment, just as the Queen is about to stalk off, she turns to meet Raven Six's eyes. There's a faint trace of a smirk before her retinue lead her off.

The Queen's aura is one of overwhelming evil.


Female Android Alchemist 8/Rogue 2; Init +2; Darkvision 60 ft, Low-light vision, Perception +18; AC 21 (+2 Dex., +5 armour, +2 natural, +4 Shield); hp 70/70; Fort +8; Ref +11; Will +4

"Oh. That... is not good. Quite the opposite," the Alchemist murmurs.


Male CG Human Cleric 10 HP: 82/72 I AC: 22 (11 Tch, 21Fl) | CMB: 10, CMD: 20 | F: +8, R: +5, W: +11 | Init: +4 | Perc: +5 Speed 20ft | Channel 4/4 | Spells 6/6 6/6 5/5 4/4 4/4 3/3 |

Perception: 1d20 + 3 ⇒ (9) + 3 = 12

Raven Six wrote:

When Commandant Endrin is brutally murdered and the riot breaks out, Raven Six looks to the others.

"Now?" is all she asks, one hand lowering to a bomb-vial hanging from her belt. "Is it now?"

"No." Sevenspawn's eyes burn with defiance underneath his hood, and his tone bitter. "Her death must wait." He points instead at Endrin's fallen body. "The Commandant is down but not gone. I can stabilize him; we must take him and flee --"

He is already walking quickly, pushing hard against the crowd. It is perhaps futile, but righteousness demands it.

"THOD! I NEED A PATH!"


Male CG Halfling Investigator 10 | HP: 57/57 | AC: 19 (16 FF, 14 Tch) | CMB: 6, CMD: 19, FF: 16 | F: +7, R: +12, W: +10 | Init: +7 (+9 urban)| Perc: +15 | Locate Traps +20 | Disarm Traps +20 | Speed 20ft | Inspiration 7/8 | Harrow Points: 3 | +6 vs Poison, +2 vs Fear, +3 vs Traps | Active effects: Heroism, Heightened Awareness (+2 attacks, saves, skills; further +2 Perception & Knowledge)

Donnell keeps up a steady muttering commentary throughout the Queen's speech:
"Hah! Tolja she'd take the credit."
"I'll believe Davaulus is dead when I can spit on his corpse."
"... the f$$#ing Maidens?"
"Oh no... Oh f!#% - OH F U C K!!"

Realizing quickly that he will be useless in fighting against the press of the crowd, Donnell starts dodging people, all the while keeping an eye on the platform:
(Where does the Queen go and can Donnell follow her?)

Acrobatics: 1d20 + 9 ⇒ (10) + 9 = 19
Perception: 1d20 + 13 + 1d6 ⇒ (5) + 13 + (3) = 21

I don't know if you want a Stealth roll yet, but if Donnell is successful in following, he'll drink an Invisibility extract once they are out of the crowd/indoors


.

Cautious of the Gray Maidens one step away from indiscriminately slaughtering everyone in sight, Thod simply pushes forward like an icebreaker, knocking people left and right but stepping short of drawing a weapon. He makes straight for the stage as the Queen is surrounded by a troupe of Gray Maidens and lead towards the Castle.

@Donnell you could follow her, but she's not going anywhere unusual.

Sevenspawn's new shield, proudly emblazoned with the Rose helps give him some space as well, and he manages to make the stage. Marcus Endrin is still breathing, if shallowly.

Trailing the Queen's retinue is Cressida Kroft. She turns around, noticing you recovering Endrin. She locks eyes with Sevenspawn, nods once, points at the lot of you, and then jerks a thumb over to the direction of Citadel Volshyenek before she turns to dutifully complete her escort.

Endrin's body is on a raised stage, you could easily pull him into the crowd although getting him out while ringed by Gray Maidens may be a trick.


NG Male Dwarven Barbarian 10 | HP 115/115 {145/145} | AC 21 (19 Rage, 12 Touch, 20 Flat-Footed) | CMB +14/+16, CMD 25/27 | Fort. +13/16, Ref. +6, Will +10/12 | Init. +2 | Perc. +15 | Speed 30ft | Rage: 14/25 | DR 2/- | Active conditions: N/A

Back at the house.

Thod is stunned seeing the small winged humanoid prance around and the odd conversation, cocking an eyebrow at it. Stunned enough that even as everybody else starts to head out, he's still staring at where the thing was on the table, and only heads out once everyone else is out the door.

"What the hell is that thing?"

At the Square.

Quote:
... her crown is... new, with weaving fang-like spikes thrusting upwards.

"Man, look at that crown. Is she TRYING to look evil!?"

Quote:
"I am officially naming the Gray Maidens as the new protectors of Korvosa, and am appointing Sabina Merrin as the singular General of Korvosa!"

"I'd be more worried if I ever found a Gray Maiden that can fight worth a damn."

Quote:

The Queen freezes in shock, and Endrin raises the bow, snapping an arrow into place and shooting the Queen directly into the temple. It sinks deep into her skull.

Yet she does not fall.

".... Holy $#!%."

Quote:

With incredible speed, she regains her composure and yanks free the arrow. As the blood from the wound pours down to her jaw, she stalks towards Endrin. Her free hand whips out and seizes him by the throat, lifting him off the ground and holding him up for all to see. An instant later, she stabs Endrin’s own

arrow up under his jaw and out the side of his face with a spray of blood.

"... HOLY $#!%!"

Thod stands with the group, not eager to get involved in what looks like another riot. At least at first.

Quote:
"THOD! I NEED A PATH!"

"RIGHT!"

But, on the other hand, Thod is always ready to act. He lowers his head, crossing his forearms in front of his face, and charges forward.
"OUTTA MY WAY! MOVE IT! MOVE IT! COMIN' THROUGH! Pardon me, miss. MOVE IT OR LOSE IT!"

Arriving at the body of Endrin, Thod quickly hoists him up, slinging him over Thod's shoulder.

"GET HIM STABLE, I'LL HANDLE THE REST!"

Thod scans the surrounding crowd, looking for the largest gap between Gray Maidens, and hunkers down, rapidly shifting weight from one foot to another.

Battle plan. Once Sevenspawn (Or anybody) performs some form of medical stabilization, magical or otherwise, on Endrin, Thod will enter a Rage, quickly enter a Guarded Stance (+2 Dodge to AC) and Bull Rush through the crowd. Presumably, at least one Gray Maiden will try to intervene. Thod will use Strength Surge to add +8 to either the Combat Maneuver check to force his way through, or the Combat Maneuver Defense number if the Gray Maidens stop him with any fancy moves.


Male CG Human Cleric 10 HP: 82/72 I AC: 22 (11 Tch, 21Fl) | CMB: 10, CMD: 20 | F: +8, R: +5, W: +11 | Init: +4 | Perc: +5 Speed 20ft | Channel 4/4 | Spells 6/6 6/6 5/5 4/4 4/4 3/3 |

Once on Thod's shoulder, Sevenspawn clamps down on Endrin's neck with his hand and casts Stabilize. He immediately moves his hands to cast Cure Light Wounds as quickly as possible thereafter, following Thod wherever he may lead.

Cure Light Wounds (when round-applicable): 1d1d8 + 8 ⇒ (3) + 8 = 11

"HE WILL LIVE!" the cleric shouts towards Thod over the din, clapping him hard twice on the shoulder to inform he they are ready after completing the first spell. "LEAD ON, WE WILL FOLLOW!"


Male CG Halfling Investigator 10 | HP: 57/57 | AC: 19 (16 FF, 14 Tch) | CMB: 6, CMD: 19, FF: 16 | F: +7, R: +12, W: +10 | Init: +7 (+9 urban)| Perc: +15 | Locate Traps +20 | Disarm Traps +20 | Speed 20ft | Inspiration 7/8 | Harrow Points: 3 | +6 vs Poison, +2 vs Fear, +3 vs Traps | Active effects: Heroism, Heightened Awareness (+2 attacks, saves, skills; further +2 Perception & Knowledge)

Donnell hesitates slightly - seeing Kroft's surreptitious gesture puts his mind slightly at ease At least she's still on our side.... But his plan to follow and listen to the Queen's conversation is likely pointless, so he quickly recalibrates.

"Thod! Just a sec, let me..." Donnell strips Endrin of insignia, reverses the man's cloak, steals a hat from a passerby:

Disguise: 1d20 + 8 + 1d6 ⇒ (13) + 8 + (3) = 24
"Raven6, have you prepared a Disguise extract today?"

Realizing there's not much time, this will be a half-assed disguise. Donnell will try to sneak the group past the Maidens rather than risk a confrontation.


NG Male Dwarven Barbarian 10 | HP 115/115 {145/145} | AC 21 (19 Rage, 12 Touch, 20 Flat-Footed) | CMB +14/+16, CMD 25/27 | Fort. +13/16, Ref. +6, Will +10/12 | Init. +2 | Perc. +15 | Speed 30ft | Rage: 14/25 | DR 2/- | Active conditions: N/A

"NO TIME! WE GOTTA MOVE!"

I'm assuming that getting close to Endrin already makes us targets of the Gray Maidens. Thod will wait long enough for Sevenspawn to stabilize and cast his healing spell, which also gives time for Thod to activate Guarded Stance. Probably gives Donnell time for one or two adjustments. If the Gray Maidens are sufficiently distracted enough for Donnell to quickly disguise Endrin's body, Thod will wait for another round before taking off.


.

In the chaos of the crowd starting to riot, Sevenspawn pulls Endrin from the stage, hoisting his body over his shoulders. Endrin is very clearly... well, Endrin in his sable company regalia. Sevenspawn's magical healing surges into the man and he lets out a gasp, his eyes fluttering open. He is debilitated but may be able to walk with support.

This of course goes noticed by the Gray Maidens who are trying to ring the crowd and you hear a few cry. "They have Endrin's body!" A few break off from the sides to try and circle around to the stage to get at you.

You're currently encircled by Gray Maidens. You could get up onto the stage which is currently clear, but would be heavily exposed. Otherwise you need to find a way to get out through the ring of Maidens encircling you. It's unclear if they know who has Endrin or not.


Male CG Human Cleric 10 HP: 82/72 I AC: 22 (11 Tch, 21Fl) | CMB: 10, CMD: 20 | F: +8, R: +5, W: +11 | Init: +4 | Perc: +5 Speed 20ft | Channel 4/4 | Spells 6/6 6/6 5/5 4/4 4/4 3/3 |

"Apologies, my friends," Sevenspawn barks out, before casting Vision of Hell into the surrounding area.

As he moves - wherever Thod leads, that is - Sevenspawn will use his Liberation power.


Female Android Alchemist 8/Rogue 2; Init +2; Darkvision 60 ft, Low-light vision, Perception +18; AC 21 (+2 Dex., +5 armour, +2 natural, +4 Shield); hp 70/70; Fort +8; Ref +11; Will +4

"This will undoubtedly cause problems," Raven Six notes - as she tosses a bomb to open up a path for Thod, hopefully without splashing civilians.

BOOM for 3d6 + 5 ⇒ (5, 3, 3) + 5 = 16 fire, splash 8.


NG Male Dwarven Barbarian 10 | HP 115/115 {145/145} | AC 21 (19 Rage, 12 Touch, 20 Flat-Footed) | CMB +14/+16, CMD 25/27 | Fort. +13/16, Ref. +6, Will +10/12 | Init. +2 | Perc. +15 | Speed 30ft | Rage: 14/25 | DR 2/- | Active conditions: N/A

I see no reason to change my original plan. Still holding Endrin, (Just because he's conscious is no reason to put him down) Thod follows through. Rage, Defensive stance, and charge, bull-rushing/overrunning through the lowest concentration of Gray Maidens, using Strength Surge to hopefully win any CMB or CMD checks.

EDIT: Quick reminder that I do not have Bull Rush or Overrun feats, so I will provoke Attacks Of Opportunity


Male CG Halfling Investigator 10 | HP: 57/57 | AC: 19 (16 FF, 14 Tch) | CMB: 6, CMD: 19, FF: 16 | F: +7, R: +12, W: +10 | Init: +7 (+9 urban)| Perc: +15 | Locate Traps +20 | Disarm Traps +20 | Speed 20ft | Inspiration 7/8 | Harrow Points: 3 | +6 vs Poison, +2 vs Fear, +3 vs Traps | Active effects: Heroism, Heightened Awareness (+2 attacks, saves, skills; further +2 Perception & Knowledge)

As far as I can tell, Vision of Hell affects all of us as well
Will: 1d20 + 9 + 2 ⇒ (19) + 9 + 2 = 30

Realizing that everyone (including his mates) have lost their minds, Donnell quaffs an extract of Invisibility and nopes the hell out of there.
Stealth: 1d20 + 12 + 20 ⇒ (5) + 12 + 20 = 37

If he manages to escape the circle of Maidens, he won't completely abandon his friends, however, but will stay outside the circle until they get close.


.

Thod and Raven Six bear down as the world around them transforms into a terrible hellscape, but understanding it is an illusion they manage to calm down. The crowd immediately stops rioting and starts screaming in fear, and the Gray Maidens back up, looking around wildly.

This is enough to completely weaken the resolve of everyone around them, and disguise what's going on. Thod charges right into the crowd and hammers face-first into an unprepared Gray Maiden, sending the much lighter woman sprawling onto the ground. The three of you and invisible Donnell rush through the crowd and burst out the sides of it, dragging Endrin's body. Behind you the screams of the terrified crowd and confused Gray Maidens fill the streets.

You now find yourselves in a nearby alleyway with Marcus Endrin leaning heavily on Sevenspawn.

"You're... the plague.... Davaulus..." Endrin's jaw is barely working after being nearly murdered outright by the Queen, but he is alive.

Sevenspawn you can dismiss the spell at will if you so wish - right now you'll need to figure out what you're doing with this guy and how you're getting away from the scene.


Male CG Halfling Investigator 10 | HP: 57/57 | AC: 19 (16 FF, 14 Tch) | CMB: 6, CMD: 19, FF: 16 | F: +7, R: +12, W: +10 | Init: +7 (+9 urban)| Perc: +15 | Locate Traps +20 | Disarm Traps +20 | Speed 20ft | Inspiration 7/8 | Harrow Points: 3 | +6 vs Poison, +2 vs Fear, +3 vs Traps | Active effects: Heroism, Heightened Awareness (+2 attacks, saves, skills; further +2 Perception & Knowledge)

Figuring Raven Six to be the least shocked by his invisibility, Donnell softly puts a hand on her arm and whispers: "We need to disguise Endrin. I can quickly prep a Disguise extract if you think we have a minute. Otherwise, let's, at the very least, get him out of that uniform. Specimen H001 and I can scout the best route to either Zellara's or the Dead Warrens, but we need to get out of here!"


Female Android Alchemist 8/Rogue 2; Init +2; Darkvision 60 ft, Low-light vision, Perception +18; AC 21 (+2 Dex., +5 armour, +2 natural, +4 Shield); hp 70/70; Fort +8; Ref +11; Will +4

"A disguise is available," Raven Six says, proferring an extract. "Strip him down to his smmallclothes and put one of our cloaks on him. If anyone asks, our friend got drunk and was mugged."

Extract of Disguise self.


Male CG Human Cleric 10 HP: 82/72 I AC: 22 (11 Tch, 21Fl) | CMB: 10, CMD: 20 | F: +8, R: +5, W: +11 | Init: +4 | Perc: +5 Speed 20ft | Channel 4/4 | Spells 6/6 6/6 5/5 4/4 4/4 3/3 |

Yes, it affects everyone... hence his apologies. I don't think he'll ever get a chance to use it again, so I busted it out now.

With Endrin disguised through the extract and other clothes, Sevenspawn awaits the others to instruct him on the best way to get Endrin to the Warrens.

"Yes," Sevenspawn replies back to Endrin. "That's us. We need to get you away from here. On your feet, Commandant."

Wand of CSW: 3d8 + 8 ⇒ (3, 3, 5) + 8 = 19


NG Male Dwarven Barbarian 10 | HP 115/115 {145/145} | AC 21 (19 Rage, 12 Touch, 20 Flat-Footed) | CMB +14/+16, CMD 25/27 | Fort. +13/16, Ref. +6, Will +10/12 | Init. +2 | Perc. +15 | Speed 30ft | Rage: 14/25 | DR 2/- | Active conditions: N/A

"Take it easy for now. We're getting you out of here."

"This is sounding serious, probably best we head to the Warrens hideout. I bet the Gray Maidens will be staking out our house pretty soon. Surprised we aren't already wanted felons."


Female Homunculus Init +2; darkvision 60 ft., low-light vision; Perception +3; AC 14 (touch 14, flat-footed 12 (+2 Dex, +2 size)); hp 11; Fort +0, Ref +4, Will +1

"I'ma earn my keep," a little voice chirps -- and Raven's homunculus (unnamed) peeps out of her collar.

The cat-sized creature wriggles free and spreads its wings, then beats them strongly and spirals up into the air.


Female Android Alchemist 8/Rogue 2; Init +2; Darkvision 60 ft, Low-light vision, Perception +18; AC 21 (+2 Dex., +5 armour, +2 natural, +4 Shield); hp 70/70; Fort +8; Ref +11; Will +4

"She will be keeping watch over the terrain ahead, and assist us in avoiding patrols and the like," Raven Six explains. "I can read her thoughts, and she mine. Let's move."

See? I told you homunculi are all kinds of useful! ^_^


.

The homunculus spirals up into the air to get a sense of what's going on. She spots the Queen and entourage walk up the stairs of the pyramid towards the castle before they turn to exchange a few words with Field Marshall Croft before Croft bows her head and turns away. Even from a distance it's clear she is in a rage.

Over at the square, the riot has been suppressed and the Gray Maidens are cleaning up the dead. One is now barking out orders and a full twelve of the ironclad women split out from the group and begin fanning out. From what the homunculus can hear, they're clearly on the hunt for the bodies. But thanks to the chaos of the illusion and the fact you were in the dead centre of a riot, they aren't quite sure who did it.

Endrin gasps as more healing magic floods into him. He's still critically injured but he looks to all of you gratefully.

"Get me somewhere safe, then we can talk." He throws his hood over his head and you make a beeline southwards for the Gray.

---

With Donnell on the ground and the homunculus in the sky, you all manage to get into Korvosa's massive graveyard. If the Pharasmans notice anything, they don't mention it, and you finally get on the other side of the brand new fortified door Thod has put up.

Endrin is brought into the makeshift medical area where Sevenspawn can tend to his wounds as the man settles out. The healing magic has done a great deal but an arrow up through the jaw into the head causes some damage that if it ever does heal, will take a long time to rehabilitate from short of very powerful clerical magic.

"The Field Marshal was right about you lot," he says weakly. "I protected her and didn't tell her what I knew I had to do on that stage... but whatever Queen Ileosa is, she's left her humanity far behind."


Male CG Halfling Investigator 10 | HP: 57/57 | AC: 19 (16 FF, 14 Tch) | CMB: 6, CMD: 19, FF: 16 | F: +7, R: +12, W: +10 | Init: +7 (+9 urban)| Perc: +15 | Locate Traps +20 | Disarm Traps +20 | Speed 20ft | Inspiration 7/8 | Harrow Points: 3 | +6 vs Poison, +2 vs Fear, +3 vs Traps | Active effects: Heroism, Heightened Awareness (+2 attacks, saves, skills; further +2 Perception & Knowledge)

Donnell paces fretfully, impatiently handing Sevenspawn instruments, bandages, etc. from the shelves as Endrin is tended to.
"We knew something wasn't right with her, but this... What even is this - what has she become? And, more importantly, how do we fight it? And Togomor?! I mean, the man's not the keenest, but this is pretty low, even for him."

Stopping, snapping his fingers: "Ach - Kroft! She wanted us to find her. I'd like to bring her here, but I'm worried she's being watched... C'mon, Phaedran - can he talk yet!? Endrin! Spill, dammit - tell me everything!"


Female Android Alchemist 8/Rogue 2; Init +2; Darkvision 60 ft, Low-light vision, Perception +18; AC 21 (+2 Dex., +5 armour, +2 natural, +4 Shield); hp 70/70; Fort +8; Ref +11; Will +4

"This need not be an imposition, alpha male Donnell. Cressida Kroft is currently bonded to Specimen CK/H-001. All we need do is send out R6a/H-001 to make contact. The homunculi can converse somewhere hidden whilst Marshall Kroft and I communicate with them telepathically."


NG Male Dwarven Barbarian 10 | HP 115/115 {145/145} | AC 21 (19 Rage, 12 Touch, 20 Flat-Footed) | CMB +14/+16, CMD 25/27 | Fort. +13/16, Ref. +6, Will +10/12 | Init. +2 | Perc. +15 | Speed 30ft | Rage: 14/25 | DR 2/- | Active conditions: N/A

Thod once again stares at the little winged humanoid as Raven communicates with it.

"What the hell is that thing? Why is it naked? And can't you give it a real name, not that Special Men Seekay whatever?"


Female Android Alchemist 8/Rogue 2; Init +2; Darkvision 60 ft, Low-light vision, Perception +18; AC 21 (+2 Dex., +5 armour, +2 natural, +4 Shield); hp 70/70; Fort +8; Ref +11; Will +4

"This is the homunculus I have grown for my private use. Clothing... did not seem relevant. Its name seems perfectly satisfactory and self-explaining to me," Raven Six replies, puzzled.


Male CG Halfling Investigator 10 | HP: 57/57 | AC: 19 (16 FF, 14 Tch) | CMB: 6, CMD: 19, FF: 16 | F: +7, R: +12, W: +10 | Init: +7 (+9 urban)| Perc: +15 | Locate Traps +20 | Disarm Traps +20 | Speed 20ft | Inspiration 7/8 | Harrow Points: 3 | +6 vs Poison, +2 vs Fear, +3 vs Traps | Active effects: Heroism, Heightened Awareness (+2 attacks, saves, skills; further +2 Perception & Knowledge)

"...R6-a/H-000..."
Donnell absentmindedly corrects, mid-rant.

;)


Male CG Human Cleric 10 HP: 82/72 I AC: 22 (11 Tch, 21Fl) | CMB: 10, CMD: 20 | F: +8, R: +5, W: +11 | Init: +4 | Perc: +5 Speed 20ft | Channel 4/4 | Spells 6/6 6/6 5/5 4/4 4/4 3/3 |

Sevenspawn ignores Donnell's impatience with a calm understanding. "He can talk, Fox. He will need rest and magical healing to fully recover - more than I can currently provide. I'll arrange it if I can."

He looks to Endrin. "But my companion is right, Commandant. We need to know what you know - and, with the Sable Company dissolved of duty, how you feel they can best support the revolution to follow."

Healing: 1d20 + 10 ⇒ (6) + 10 = 16


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NG Male Dwarven Barbarian 10 | HP 115/115 {145/145} | AC 21 (19 Rage, 12 Touch, 20 Flat-Footed) | CMB +14/+16, CMD 25/27 | Fort. +13/16, Ref. +6, Will +10/12 | Init. +2 | Perc. +15 | Speed 30ft | Rage: 14/25 | DR 2/- | Active conditions: N/A

Thod continues to gripe, ignoring Endrin

"That's not a name! That's a bunch of letters and numbers mashed together, like you're sorting... Whiskey kegs, or mine shafts. She needs a real name. How about... Raven Jr.?"

"Next opportunity I get, I'm going to a dollmaker and buying Raven Jr. some clothes. She's just creepy without them."

"Though I'm pretty sure she'll be creepy with them. Chip off the ol' block, that one."


.

BACK!

Endrin speaks weakly, occasionally losing coherency, but he manages to give you as much as he can of his story.

King Eodred was at his peak a passingly competent king but had fallen into ill health and demonstrated the curse of the Crimson Throne - an inability to produce an heir. He was a womanizer who chose no wife, and it was a shock when he married Ileosa, a famed beautiful from Cheliax. People were worried about a trophy wife coming so close to the throne, but the city was very well-run by Neolandus, the seneschal. Military matters were handled by three branches - the guard under Cressida, the Sable Company under Endrin, and the Hellknights under Glorio Arkona.

The King's rapid fall into disease and death was suspicious, and Neolandus became silent after that point before he completely vanished, with the Queen calling it an abdication of duty during a time of need. Endrin is still not sure what happened and if he is still alive.

Since that point the Queen has brought in her own people like Sabina who the Queen is never seen without, and Togomor a corpulent academic and extremely powerful wizard.

Endrin was convinced the Queen had killed her husband, and with the news that Davaulus had manufactured the plague was convinced the Queen had done it as a form of ethnic cleansing targeting the Varisians and other poor of Old Korvosa which still remains quarantined. He was convinced that she was a terror, but just a mortal woman with no combat training so the public assassination attempt was a symbol and an attempt to go out honourably. The fact she almost killed him with her bare hands has him confused and terrified. He does not know who - or what the Queen is that can do such things.


Male CG Human Cleric 10 HP: 82/72 I AC: 22 (11 Tch, 21Fl) | CMB: 10, CMD: 20 | F: +8, R: +5, W: +11 | Init: +4 | Perc: +5 Speed 20ft | Channel 4/4 | Spells 6/6 6/6 5/5 4/4 4/4 3/3 |

"Yes. She possesses some great strength, that is for certain." Sevenspawn touches his brow. "She wears a new crown now. Perhaps it gives her that strength. With a wizard such as Togomor as her ally and her Maidens before her..." He shakes his head, turning to the others.

"We must find our allies, too. If Commandant Endrin can rally the Sable Company in the days ahead, that would be a great boon to the revolution to come. We must also coordinate with the Field Marshal, though quietly. But first," he finishes, "there is the matter of Old Korvosa and the quarantine."


NG Male Dwarven Barbarian 10 | HP 115/115 {145/145} | AC 21 (19 Rage, 12 Touch, 20 Flat-Footed) | CMB +14/+16, CMD 25/27 | Fort. +13/16, Ref. +6, Will +10/12 | Init. +2 | Perc. +15 | Speed 30ft | Rage: 14/25 | DR 2/- | Active conditions: N/A

"Well, something strange is going on. Not even sure what her goal is, yet. I mean, if her goal is just to kill a lot of people, she's stupider than I am."

"But yeah, let's focus on the immediate. Think Endrin here needs a rest, and this is probably one of the safest areas to rest in, especially for a guy guilty of trying to murder the queen."


Female Android Alchemist 8/Rogue 2; Init +2; Darkvision 60 ft, Low-light vision, Perception +18; AC 21 (+2 Dex., +5 armour, +2 natural, +4 Shield); hp 70/70; Fort +8; Ref +11; Will +4

Prognostication check: 1d20 + 6 ⇒ (20) + 6 = 26

"Before anything else, let me check something," Raven Six says.

The Alchemist brings out her own deck of cards, shuffles them, and arranges them in a grid pattern quite distinct from Zellara's.

"Now. Let us see what the aether is willing to say about Neolandus," Raven Six says as she turns over the first card.


Female Homunculus Init +2; darkvision 60 ft., low-light vision; Perception +3; AC 14 (touch 14, flat-footed 12 (+2 Dex, +2 size)); hp 11; Fort +0, Ref +4, Will +1

"Sssoooooooooo should I go an' talk to Mashall Kroft's homuncielus?" R6-a asks. "'Cos I totally can!"

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