On a brisk Autumn evening, a Pathfinder Society Venture-Captain named Drandle Dreng welcomes you into his modest Absalom home for an impromptu meeting. "Please sit down, there are chairs for everyone." Drandle Dreng, a stout and hardy Taldan with thin, greying hair and a thick, bushy beard says as you enter, "Don't mind the mess, just brush that off, it's fine... Drinks! Does anyone want a drink? I've got tea, coffee, I might even have some wine here somewhere..." After taking orders, he heads into the kitchen, leaving you to find somewhere to sit in his cluttered living room.
Plenty of wooden stools and chairs surround the large butcher-block table in the centre of the room, but finding somewhere to sit is more of a challenge then one might expect. Each of the chairs is in a dubious state of repair, and most of them are covered in old clothes and the occasional dirty mug. "I'm out of coffee!" You hear the Venture-Captain yell from the kitchen, "Would plain hot water do?"
Howdy folks! The game doesn't officially start until the 5th, but that doesn't mean we can't have a little fun in the mean time. Feel free to introduce yourselves and chat a bit in character. :)
Tera looks the room over. She's a tall woman who wears a thin veil over her face. She is dressed in simple hide armor. "Hot water is fine." she calls back to Mr. Dreng.
I think I have some tea in my bag. She carefully moves a pile of laundry off of a chair that looks like it might hold her weight and takes a seat.
"My name is Tera." She leans forward and whispers, "I know he doesn't have wine. I had a mission to bring him some, and we ended up finding a secret room with another Pathfinder's research in it. He never did get the wine." She gives the assembled group a big smile which you can see under the veil.
A lanky two-tailed kitsune with orangy-brown fur stalks into the room. There are bits of leaves, twigs and flower petals tangled in her fur which drift gently to the ground as she walks. As they float down to the ground they fade, vanishing as if they were never real in the first place.
The kitsune looks around the cluttered living room with a wide, amused smile, as if she has never seen such a thing in her life. Her smile reveals sharp canine teeth.
After staring around the room for a moment she suddenly picks her way across the room, stepping over books, laundry, and furniture until she finds a plain wooden stool. She sits on it and rocks back and forth curiously, obviously amusing herself by testing how long it will hold her weight.
"Cold water." she calls out to Venture Captain Dreng.
Thus entertained, she eyes the other Pathfinders.
"You had a mission to bring wine to him, and you failed?" she asks Tara curiously. She smiles with amusement at the implications to Tara's competency. After a moment of staring intensely at the veiled woman she turns and looks at the assembled Pathfinders in turn.
"My last mission also had lots of wine. No secret rooms, unfortunately. But plenty of violence and theft. It was amusing enough."
A little two-tailed kitsune with pink fur and eyes jumps into the room. She smiles, showing off sharp teeth.
The pink kitsune jumps across the crowded room and sits down beside the other kitsune. She looks at her very closely, nose to nose, staring at the kitsune. Then she looks at the kitsune's two tails, and at her own two tails.
With a big smile she says, "Why do you have two-tails?"
The dinosaur stomps through the room gracefully without knocking anything over, and sits beside the pink kitsune.
She sings happily. It is loud.
The pink kitsune smiles at the song and pats her dinosaur on the head.
"Two cold waters, please." she says to Dreng.
Looking at all the Pathfinders, she says, "Hi! I am Bunny Paras! And this is my parasaurolophus, Paras!"
Pointing at the kitsune she asks, "Who are you?"
Looking at the door and waving her furry hand, she calls, "Come on, Mr. Ice! Come on, Enzo! Hurry up! Want to come sit beside me?"
|Senton 'Mr. Ice'|
A man walks into the room. He has pale white skin and is bundled up in warm winter clothes. He wears a big furry hat on his head and a fur cloak and boots. He is shivering with cold and his teeth chatter loudly. He has a black patch on his cheek from some old frost bite. The man looks big and strong. Clearly, he is Ulfen. He has a beard and a moustache. Under his hat his hair is gray. His eyes are blue. He has a big full backpack on, two short swords strapped onto his belt, and a bow and quiver over his shoulder.
"Bunny Paras! Really?" he huffs.
He sits in the nearest chair and covers himself up with a blanket. He rubs his arms with his hands to keep warm.
"Since I h-h-heard you guys t-t-talking about your last adventures, I might as well t-t-tell you about mine!"
With a big smile he says, "My name's Senton! But folks call me Mr. Ice!"
Waving his arms around he exclaims, "So there we were! Me, Bunny Paras, Paras and Enzo, stomping through the jungles and ancient ruins of Sargava when a giant dragon-frog-beast with three eyes attacked! It made tidal waves! It flattened some Aspis Consortium agents! And it almost ate my good pal, Gideon Wren!"
With a nod he says, "Oh, the tales I could tell 'ya! Never mind fetchin' wine!"
With a yell to the Venture Captain, he adds, "Hot tea, please! As hot at you can make it! BURNING!"
A well-groomed lanky Chelaxian nobleman enters the room. He has pale skin, black hair, gray eyes, and a fabulous moustache. He stands near the doorway and studies Tera and this other kitsune that he does not recognize. "Greetings. I'm Enzo Jeggare."
Enzo has a small dog figurine in his hand.
"Water is fine, thank you." he calls to Drandle Dreng.
Nose to nose with another kitsune, the orange-furred kitsune smiles widely and cocks her head with interest. Apparently, she has no problem with her personal space being invaded.
"I've never met another being like me," she says with excitement as she returns the kitsune's gaze. She flicks her tails back and forth proudly. "And here I thought I was special..."
As the dinosaur starts to trumpet loudly, the kitsune turns and looks at it. Her ears twitch back and forth, her whiskers quiver, and she licks her maw hungrily.
"Is that for eating?" she asks. "Fresher than rations. Tastier too, I bet..."
With a yipping laugh, the orange kitsune nods at the other Pathfinders in greeting.
"I am Everbloom," she tells them.
Looking at the man covered in furs, Everbloom smiles widely and yips with laughter. "You've more furs than a den of bears!" she remarks. "How can you still be cold?"
With a look at the lanky Chelaxian, Everbloom cocks her head with interest. Eyeing him intensely, she stares for a long, long, long time, but says nothing.
Suddenly she goes back to rocking her chair back and forth, curious how long it will take to break...
Throwing her arms out to protect the dinosaur, Bunny Paras replies, "This parasaurolophus is not for eating! She is for hugging, and cuddling, and singing, and dancing with! She is my best friend! Also, she is great at herding bunny rabbits!"
Bunny Paras laughs happily, then gives her big dinosaur a hug.
"Bunny rabbits?" Everbloom asks. "Tell me they're for eating, at least."
With a laugh, Everbloom looks at Mr. Ice. "Frog-monster, hey? The four of you?"
Looking around at the room at Bunny Paras, Paras, Senton and Enzo. "Sounds like you got the best missions."
She sounds both impressed and amused.
Drandle Dreng walks back into the room with a tray of mugs, glasses, and a bowl, "Let's see if I have this right. Four cold waters, one hot water, and a mug of lava tea for our chilly friend over here." He places the tray on the table and starts passing out the drinks, placing the bowl of water in front of Paras first, "That's quite a voice you've got there." He says with a chuckle as he pats the dinosaur on the head, "I've never heard anything quite like it before."
Once everyone has a drink in hand, the Venture-Captain stands at the head of the table, ready to start the briefing. He opens his mouth, takes a deep breath as if he is about launch into a long speech, glances at Enzo, and says, "That is a marvellous moustache! Truly wonderful. I tried growing one myself, but it just went all bushy. No curl to it you see. No matter how much I- Oh, what am I talking about, you're here for a mission, not to hear about my trials and tribulations with facial hair." He licks his lips, and gets downs to business, "The abandoned district of... You know, this would work much better with a map!" He starts patting himself down, checking his pockets, "I know I have one around here, somewhere..." He then starts searching through the room, throwing bits of laundry in the air, and checking under chairs, "Keep talking among yourselves, I'll be with you in a second."
Everbloom takes her glass of cold water from the tray. She watches with interest as Dreng fumbles around like a fool.
"No! The bunnies are not for eating, either!"
Bunny Paras takes her glass of water and takes sips it.
When Drang looks around for his map, Bunny Paras hugs her dinosaur again.
Everbloom looks at the other kitsune with shock. "You don't even eat the rabbits?!? How can you resist?"
Her tummy grumbles loudly, and she licks her maw.
|Senton 'Mr. Ice'|
Mr. Ice nods at Everbloom. "Y-y-yes!" he says with chattering teeth. "That was my f-f-first ever advent-t-t-ture!"
Senton grabs the burning hot cup of tea and drinks it down in eight seconds. With the enpty cup in his hands he says, "I'm so c-c-cold even though I finished my tea! Can I have eight more cups?" With a shiver he adds, "Hotter this time!"
When he hears Everbloom's tummy grumble, he fishes around in his pockets and pulls out a dead bird. "Here!" he says as he passes it to her. "Take this dead bird. It used to be my pet. Poor thing froze solid!"
He seems to think this is a nice thing to offer her.
Everbloom takes the bird and gives it a sniff.
"Birds are better twitching," she points out. Despite her complaints she pops the bird into her mouth and chews loudly.
Plucking a few feathers out of her teeth, she flicks them on the floor. Then she drinks down her water.
"Thanks." she tells Mr. Ice.
Enzo returns Everbloom's stare and arches one eyebrow. He clears his throat. "Nice to meet you."
"Mobogo. The frog-monster it's a Mobogo. Huge. Very dangerous."
Enzo strokes his moustache proudly at the compliment.
Enzo wrinkles his nose as Everbloom eats the bird.
Tera sits in amazement as the first kitsune comes inside, then the second followed by a dinosaur. She looks concerned at the freezing man, and nods hello Enzo.
"What do you do with the bunnies if you don't eat them? Are they for magicians to pull out of hats?" She asks Bunny Paras.
"We try sit you by a fire Mr. Ice. Would that help?"
"Everbloom it's nice to meet you. I love the orange color of your fir."
Enzo it's nice to meet you. Why is no one else cold?"
"Bunnies are so cute!"
"You're always cold!"
"Greetings Tera." Enzo nods at Tera. "Was the wine magical?"
"Oh!" Bunny Paras replies to Tera. "I'm a rabbit breeder! But, I love them too much to sell them! So I have a lot of rabbits!"
"Don't mind him! Mr. Ice is always cold!" Bunny Paras explains. "He even complained he was cold when we were in the jungle!"
Bunny Paras laughs.
"MO-BO-GO?" Everbloom pronounces carefully. "Sounds exciting."
At Tera's compliments, Everbloom smiles widely, revealing her sharp teeth. She flicks her tails happily. "Yes, it's lovely, isn't it?"
With narrowed eyes at the man wrapped in furs she adds, "It's not for you to wear."
She smiles again, already forgetting her suspicions.
Looking at Tera, Everbloom asks, "What are you hiding under that veil?"
No the wine wasn't magical Enzo. It was from an Inn where Mr. Dreng was trying different wines. When we grabbed the bottle off the shelf. It wasn't a real bottle, but the key to a secret door. The door led to adventure, and a search through Absalom for clues."
Tera ducks her head slightly, but lifts the veil. Her eyes are a milky white instead of normal eyes like a human normally would have. "I don't see well, and some people find my eyes disturbing. That's why I cover them."
"Disturbing?" Everbloom asks. With a sly smile she chuckles. "Then they're weak."
"Aha!" Dreng exclaims as he brushes away an old hat, revealing a large map underneath, "This should work nicely." He hops up and makes his way back to the head of the table, "I'm afraid we'll have to save the tea for another time, Mr. Ice. At least until after the briefing..." He unfurls the map on the table, places a meaty finger on the parchment, and with a deep breath, starts the breifing. "The abandoned district of Beldrin's Bluff was once the gem of Absalom's Precipice District—now it is but a weathered crag of broken rock at the edge of the roiling sea. When the great quake hit ten years ago, entire blocks of the Bluff sheared from the mainland. Cliffside tearooms and exclusive estates fell into the waves and carried hundreds of nobles to a watery grave. An elite academy, called the Tri-Towers Yard, remained on the mainland, but sank wholesale into the earth. Children unfortunate enough to survive the quake lay pinned under debris as sewer water slowly rose from the ground and drowned them. Nearly every student perished."
"Today, crumbled stone walls and weed-filled lots sprawl where gentlemen's clubs once filled with pipe smoke and hobnobbing lords. The Drownyard—er, that’s what the ill-mannered call the school these days—lies behind a fence of black iron pikes, constructed by the families of the dead to discourage morbid trespassers."
"Even respected archaeological groups have been denied official access. Our own Society has itched to explore the site ever since the quake—that is, ever since we discovered that the school fell through the roof of a lost necropolis. Unfortunately, the emotional trauma attached to the school has remained fresh. But finally, after ten years of mourning, the politically-connected families of dead students have sanctioned our delve request."
With a toothy smile and a clap, Dreng says, "I'm pleased to announce that I've selected you fine agents for the delve. I want you to find a way into the necropolis, document your findings with professional detail, and recover artefacts of historical significance. The Society is interested in one artefact in particular—a two-finger ring topped with a ruby salamander."
Everbloom listens to the mission briefing with amused interest. She doesn't seem saddened by the tale of Bledrin's Bluff or the Tri-Towers Yard.
Suddenly her ears twitch, here eyes sparkle, and a wide smile spread across her maw.
"Lost necropolis? Historical artifacts?" She moans happily. "Is this ring expected to be magical? Dangerous, perhaps?"
Clearly she hopes it is...
|Senton 'Mr. Ice'|
"F-f-fire? Where? I hope it helps..." Mr. Ice chatters.
Rubbing his arms for warmth, Mr. Ice listens to the mission briefing.
"Yes, lets g-g-get moving! I need to warm up! I don't want to freeze lik-k-k-ke my bird." he chatters.
What do I know about the earthquake and the sinkhole? Was it natural? Do I think it was suspicious? And what do I know about what it might be like now?
Knowledge Geography: 1d20 + 4 ⇒ (10) + 4 = 14
Knowledge Nature: 1d20 + 4 ⇒ (16) + 4 = 20
As Everbloom shows off her orange fur, Bunny Paras pats her own nice, soft, pink, fur. "I like pink better."
As Tera lifts up her veil, Bunny Paras laughs. "How can you even see?"
When she hears about the mission Bunny Paras' ears flatten. She looks scared!
"Oh, no! Those poor kids!" she says sadly.
"What's so special about that ring?"
"It's not easy. I don't see very well. Pink is a pretty color."
Tera turns to as Mr Dreng questions, "Are there rumors of the area being haunted? Please tell us more about the ring. Why are the families allowing us in now?"
"A two-finger ring with ruby salamander? Hmmmm....."
Do I know anything about this ring?
Knowledge Arcana: 1d20 + 8 ⇒ (14) + 8 = 22
Knowledge History: 1d20 + 8 ⇒ (18) + 8 = 26
Knowledge Local: 1d20 + 9 ⇒ (15) + 9 = 24
Knowledge Nobility: 1d20 + 5 ⇒ (20) + 5 = 25
Enzo appears dead in thought.
With all the questions about the ring, Dreng's smile broadens, "Ah, I'm glad you asked!" He says as he rolls up the map, "Nothing dangerous about it. It's a perfectly normal ring as far as I know, but the history of the ring, now that is far more interesting. In ancient times, a wealthy merchant cut a ruby salamander ring from the hand of young cat burglar named Horastian. Horastian later became a renowned information broker and art collector. The Pathfinder Society hopes to magically locate the long-dead thief and his fabled hoard by using the ring as a divination focus."
When Tera asks him about ghosts, he scratches his bushy beard in thought, "Rumours of haunting? Hmm... Yes, now I come to think about it, I suppose there have been one or two stories from those few people who choose to remain in the area." He scrunches up his face and waves a dismissive hand, "I wouldn't worry about it though, probably just shadows and memories of the overly superstitious."
"Why now?" Dreng repeats Tera's question, "I suspect it has something to do with this..." He reaches into his pocket and pulls out a letter on delicate (but expensive) parchment, and passes it to the closest agent, "I hope you haven't already eaten this evening. Even if you have, you should attend and hear what Lady Dalcilane has to say. At the very least, I'm sure there'll be nice roaring fire at her house." He adds, looking at the poor freezing, Mr. Ice.
The invitation from Lady Dacilane:
It has come to my attention that you and your cohorts were chosen by the noble Pathfinders to enter and explore what became of the Tri-Towers Yard. As my daughter, Junia, was lost there during the great quake, it seems only proper that you attend the banquet I am holding tonight in memory of her. You and your friends should wear your finest and arrive at the Dacilane Estate in the Ivy District at sundown. As you are probably not accustomed to the traditions of nobles, not attending this dinner would be a serious slight upon the memory of my daughter.
Lady Miranda Dacilane
Everbloom looks a little disappointed that the ring is not some kind of magical ring of mass destruction.
Upon reading the letter, Everbloom laughs.
"Wear my finest clothes?" She laughs again. "I spent the first fifteen years of my life in nothing but my fur! She should be happy I'm wearing clothes at all." With a shrug, Everbloom examines her simple shorts and worn out crop top. "Is this fine enough?" she asks curiously.
It definitely is not. In addition to being threadbare, they're woefully out of fashion--in fact, they likely never were in fashion.
She responds to Everbloom, "I don't think that is what she has in mind. My clothing isn't the finest either. We should go shopping!" Tera looks excited at the idea of shopping.
"Oooh! A dinner party! I want to go shopping! I'll buy a fancy red dress with a pink baby rabbit stitched onto it! I saw it in the window of a tailor's shop just the other day!"
Looking at Paras, Bunny Paras scratches her chin. "Let's buy you a pretty bow, Paras! What do you think? Or maybe a skirt!"
With a big smile, Bunny Paras exclaims, "I'll buy you both! In pink!"
Bunny Paras looks very excited.
|Senton 'Mr. Ice'|
DId I learn anything about the sinkhole?
"I would l-l-love to go! I can wear my finest f-f-fur hat! And fur c-c-cloak! And fur coat! And fur b-b-boots! And fur p-pants! And fur leg warmers! And fur b-belt! And fur shirt! And fur s-socks! And fur underwear!"
Mr. Ice smiles. "I hope they have a b-b-big fireplace. Do you think they'll s-serve soup?"
"Hmmm. The ruby ring of the salamander. Heh?" Enzo mutters to himself.
Do I know of Lady Miranda Dacilane? And is she related to Horastian or the family of royalty who possessed the ruby ring of the salamander?
Knowledge History: 1d20 + 8 ⇒ (13) + 8 = 21
Knowledge Local: 1d20 + 9 ⇒ (4) + 9 = 13
Knowledge Nobility: 1d20 + 5 ⇒ (2) + 5 = 7
Enzo sips his water. After Everbloom states that she wore nothing but her fur for fifteen years, Enzo chokes loudly on his water. Enzo awkwardly coughs for a minute trying to compose himself.
"Yes, shopping is a fine suggestion Tera."
As Enzo chokes and sputters on his water, Everbloom looks at him with an amused smile.
Eventually she shrugs. "I guess I can afford some clothes."
Bunny Paras claps her hands! "Oh, yes, Everbloom! You need to buy fancy clothes!!"
I'm so sorry that I missed your question Mr. Ice. Thank you for the reminder.
The sinkhole is likely to be very dark and damp, but should be stable enough not to worry about the danger of another collapse.
"Excellent! Then all that is left for me to do is say is farewell and good luck!" Drandle Dreng says cheerfully, with another clap and toothy smile, waiting for you to leave. "Oh wait! There is one more thing..." He reaches into his waistcoat and pulls out an iron key. "I leave you with the key to the Drownyard gate. Remember, the Drownyard is a deeply personal site for many powerful Inner Sea families. You will tread upon the graves of their children. Be sure to give the site the respect it deserves."
Excited by the prospect of a dinner party and the opportunity it affords for some shopping, you all head straight for The Coins district to find some new clothes. While you are shopping, you each find yourselves in possession of a mysterious letter. For some of you, these letters were found in the pockets of your new clothes, others are approached by messengers, and some of you even find your letters just laying on the floor.
Your letters are hidden in the spoiler below, just click on one with your name on it to find out what it says. :)
You've been assigned a most distasteful task by this tiresome Society you swear allegiance to. Thankfully for us all, Asmodeus finds glory in even the darkest shadows of the world. A certain loyalist to our faction, Lady Miranda Dacilane, lost her only child, her beautiful daughter Junia, to the disaster that befell the Tri-Towers Yard. We believe Lady Dacilane to be a spy for the Taldans and need an object from her person to better help our agents keep track of her movements. Without doing any harm to the Lady Dacilane and without arousing her suspicion, acquire the bejewelled skull broach that she so often shows off at Absalom dinner parties.
I've been instructed to ask you to acquire some of the putrid black liquid that is said to pool about the grounds of the Drownyard. Particularly, there is a pool there that is said to bubble most unnaturally. Acquire a sample of this liquid and bring it to me.
Hurry now in your task—I have further pleasures to show you.
Paracountess Zarta Dralneen
The Tri-Towers Yard was an institute of great learning for Absalom's elite—it was also a source of important intelligence offered to the Ruby Prince's cause by the Headmistress, a woman of Osirion birth named Kiwu Quadin. Kiwu was a high-ranking spy among my inner circle. It is of grave import that you collect her records, if they still exist, and not allow
them to fall into Pathfinder Society hands.
Additionally, our great necromancer priests are seeking samples of a variety of undead from across Golarion. They believe you'll find what they're looking for in the necropolis beneath the Tri-Towers Yard. Find a living corpse of obvious noble birth—a king, perhaps—and bring a sample of that corpse’s body to me. Doing so will give our priests great insight into the world of the dead.
Beware the restless spirits of the Tri-Towers Yard and may Pharasma's shroud shield you from their rancour.
Amenopheus, The Sapphire Sage
Have you been able to find the clothes you were looking for? What do they look like? And where did your letter come from?
|Senton 'Mr. Ice'|
Mr. Ice goes home and changes into his fanciest all-fur outfit. He finds the letter in his hat!
After reading it he shakes a little bit.
Oh, my! Necromancy! I hate necromancy! Hmmm... Well, I'll look for this paperwork, but I just might forget this part about the dead body! Well.... it IS from Amenopheus himself... I guess I should get the body too...
Mr. Ice then lights a fire in his fireplace and burns the letter. After its all ashes he douses the fire and heads out to find his friends.
When he sees his good friend, Enzo, Mr. Ice whispers to him:
When he sees his best friend, Bunny Paras, Mr. Ice whispers to her:
After talking with his friends, Mr. Ice is ready to go to the party.
Bunny Paras gets the nicest clothes, just like she said she would. The dress is still in the shop like it used to be. She reads the letter and then rips it up and throws it in the garbage.
After that, Bunny Paras and Paras get dressed in their fancy clothes! She is very happy and very pretty! Paras is, too!
Enzo enjoys shopping for fine clothing. Enzo offers fashion suggestions to his companions for the event. Enzo buys a fine dark red silken shirt, trendy black jacket with red trim, velvet black pants and new shoes.
An old man in the coins district tells Enzo "You dropped this," and hands Enzo the letter.
After reading the letter, Enzo places it neatly in his jacket pocket.
Do I know anything of this black liquid?
Knowledge Arcana: 1d20 + 8 ⇒ (3) + 8 = 11
Knowledge History: 1d20 + 8 ⇒ (5) + 8 = 13
Knowledge Local: 1d20 + 9 ⇒ (20) + 9 = 29
Knowledge Planes: 1d20 + 8 ⇒ (20) + 8 = 28