World of Golarian Adventures: Lastwall Campaign (Inactive)

Game Master pinvendor

A story with interesting characters seeking their fortune in Lastwall and possibly beyond.

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Ephemeral GameMaster

Read this before you post - What you can expect from my narrative format:
Most of my posts regarding story, NPCs, combat, and other miscellaneous will be as Spirit of Pinvendor. If however, the actions of a particular NPC need focus or if a PC is engaging a specific NPC(s) in dialogue, I may break into the Name Below alias so everyone else will know it is not a "GM" post which requires a critical and absorbing read. You may assume your character hears or sees anything discussed or performed by a Name Below post if you wish unless it is spoilered at which time if you would like to hear or observe the action, you will need to have your PC pass an appropriate Perception check. You only need to make the roll if you feel your PC would actually have been paying attention or in the area.

The following introductory section will be a fleshing out of the various NPCs and what not of the caravan that is on its way to Castle Everstand. I ask that no one post until I indicate that the fleshing is done so the intro posts remain unbroken and no one posts anything which would then contradict what I am in the process of creating for you.

What I am asking of you for this section will be to jump in with your post of how your PC actually joins the caravan. So feel free to wait until the RP reaches a point where you feel your PC would enter the story. For example, if the caravan encounters a wagon on the road; and you think your PC is in that wagon, go ahead and introduce your PC and provide as little or much background as you would like. If there are any secrets your PC has, please PM me with those, so I know what to expect from your interactions with PCs and NPCs and can work whatever you would like into the story.

Also, these NPCs in the caravan are really there to be tools for you to use to explain what causes your PC to become a part of the caravan. Basic safety in numbers, an NPC has similar education/interests, or even something more nefarious (spotted an amulet your PC would like to lift, heh) are all simple ideas that might work. Feel free to come up with more complicated ideas, naturally. I say all this because the NPCs I am making are not GMPCs, so please don't assume there is anything so special about them unless you choose to make them so for your own use. I will allow some leeway in regards to your creative and assumptive use of them (e.g. the caravan cook is intrigued enough to discuss alchemy with someone who has knowledge of this skill allowing your PC to spend their nights speaking about it without having to "RP" this into existence beforehand)

Now I will warn you there will be some characters introduced which will definitely be more notable NPCs. I am pretty sure this will be obvious, but it will probably be better for me to spell it out. The leader of the caravan and his bodyguard are off-limits as are any NPC that is introduced to the caravan AFTER the PCs have joined unless I specifically state otherwise. Feel free to PM me if you would like to have a specific interaction occur off-camera, or even initiate RP that requires me to respond if you have any doubts about that character or the situation.

Thanks for your patience, and I encourage liberal use of the discussion page, of course!

Ephemeral GameMaster

Silas Gibbs looked back from where he rode on his bay with the chestnut coat. The caravan he had organized spread out behind his horse. Too spread out. His own wagons of tight wood, completely enclosed with steel reinforced joints and corners, stayed fairly close like soldiers in step, but he could already see the other merchants and travelers were spacing out further than he wished. Inwardly he cursed. He did not really care if they kept up...but he did care about their money. What they were offering at the end of the journey was worth for more to him than he cared to admit to anyone. And that meant delivering them alive since the funds were all based on letters of marque. Damn shrewd that was, but he had charged them more for the intangibility of "paper money" which they swallowed with bitter understanding.

"Eramac!" Silas called over his shoulder. "Get them to tighten up. Blasted merchants don't have any sense. Do they want to string us out and give the orc bandits the impression we'll be easy pickens? Bah!" he spat into the dust on the road.

The bodyguard he addressed sneered and wordlessly wheeled around. Silas heard the hooves of Eramac's stallion clop on the dirt fade as the distance increased. There, that should shake them up and get them moving. The man was dangerous and wasn't afraid to show it. If there was one person in this caravan that wasn't afraid of Eramac or at least respect his cruel lethality, they were a fool and liable to get themselves singled out for his malicious attention. Silas chuckled. That was always fun to witness.

Silas glanced at the hardbitten ranger Rodesto way in the distance up ahead on the trail. Silas hated to give him the credit, but if anyone here was a match for Eramac other than himself, he knew the ranger was. The trail guide could become a ghost. Though Eramac never admitted it, Silas had seen his bodyguard's eyelid flutter when Rodesto had shown up almost unexpectedly at the campfire from a day's scouting just materializing next to the fire. It was the only sign Eramac ever gave to being startled or discomfited, but Silas had long ago learned to recognize it. He worried there would be a problem there, so he resolved to watch Eramac and try to keep his leash taut when it came to Rodesto. It wouldn't do to have the fighter slay their guide in a fit of pique.

Silas rubbed his temples. This whole trip was a damn headache. If the people awaiting the caravan at his destination hadn't been quite so quick to accept paying such a substantial amount for delivery of their goods (a price for which Silas cursed himself as it was obvious they would have paid even more), Silas would never have chosen to make this leg. He hadn't run it in years and there was always the problem he might be remembered by some powerful people.

Up ahead, Silas suddenly saw that Rodesto was signaling and dropping back. Then he saw it too. Dust up ahead. Someone else was on the road.

I know, I know. I am teasing you with a "PC enters stage left" moment, and yes one of you will be able to use it, but I have a couple bits left to do. Hold on to it, and write something good and save it somewhere. I will let you know when I am all done with the intros. ;-)

Ephemeral GameMaster

Dilia Karkov clucked at her donkey Isaac as he plodded along. His ear twitched back in her direction, and she began to hum a traveling song of Desna softly. Isaac brayed quietly in appreciation at her smoothing tones. Dilia smiled and began planning the night's dinner for the travelers. What a blessing that chest she had been given as a gift from that party of wizards! She continued to hum and think thoughts of food even as Eramac's stallion went trotting by.

Dilia smiled at him warmly as she always did despite the clenching of her stomach whenever she looked at that murderous thug. He threw a glance her way with his typical sneer. Dilia was pretty certain that expression was near permanent and probably the result of some badly healed facial injury. She tried to remain calm despite the look.

"Boss Silas is asking y'all to get a little tighter, Mother," Eramac spat out as he rode by. "I know you know what that means."

Dilia sighed and snapped the reins softly on Isaac's backside. He brayed in protest but picked up speed until he was approaching Silas' vault wagons at a good pace. Even Isaac knew better than to upset the head of the traveling group.

Dilia wondered how she had let Silas convince her yet again to sign on with his caravan as cook and herbwoman. Well, this would be the last time. Dilia was certain she could find a better troupe of which to be a part. She tried to pretend she didn't immediately think about the fact that Silas had a near perfect record for delivering his goods and caravan more or less intact. Despite his generally dark moods and harsh leadership, Dilia really hadn't been uncomfortable by her travels with Silas. At least not until Eramac had joined them...

Dilia shuddered and tried to find her hum again. As distracted as she was in her thoughts only Isaac noticed that the tune had changed to a common dirge sung during the rites of Pharasma.

Ephemeral GameMaster

"Stewart! Stewart!" Stew Mossgold heard the bellow from further back closer to the rear wagons. "Mossgold, confound it, where are you!?"

Stew sighed and shared a long suffering glance with Dalbin, the cart's driver. The young human just out of boyhood should have know better than to get comfortable.

"Coming, master!" Stew said his voice breaking a little giving away his adolescent age. He hopped of the side and the difference of speed almost made him lose his balance as a small twinge of pain bloomed in his ankle. Inwardly he cursed his gangly awkwardness and said a pray to Abadar that one day his frame would fill out like his friend Mickel Lugash's back home.

He jogged back down the line, favoring the ankle slightly as the subtle pain faded. He passed the quiet priestess of Pharasma on her fine steed. She was looking down at her holy symbol which was clutched in both hands while muttering something Stew couldn't hear. She looked rather upset...but she usually did, so Stew paid it no mind. He was much more concerned with the bellowing that continued.

"Alduin's bones, move faster, lad!" One of Stew's merchant master's favorite curses. It was supposedly a reference to a mighty and terrible black wyrm his dwarven ancestors had slain.

As Stew approached, Master Rugle Blark trotted fuming along next to the farthest wagon. Stew always marveled at how Master Blark's dwarven legs managed to keep the pace with the wagons apparently without any effort. Physical exertion certainly was not included in Stew's list of talents; something he regretted considerably. He had never imagined how much heavy lifting would be involved in merchanting when he had urged his father to talk to Master Blark for an apprenticeship. All he had ever really seen of the trade was the small market which sprung up during harvest season back home. Colorful stalls, friendly but vigorous had all seemed very exciting and full of life. Of course dwarves were made of sterner stuff than scrawny human boys, and certainly made the moving of fine cut stonework look easy.

A flap of canvas was thrown back on the wagon next to which Master Blark strode. Stew had a sinking feeling he knew what all the yelling was about. Looking at Master Blark's thick bristly mustache and wiry mutton chops Stew could see that the dwarf was obviously upset as the hair stuck out in many directions. Most folk would say he looked odd without a matching dwarven beard, but Stew had come to be used to it. It fit Master Blark much more than his race's traditional use of facial hair by miles.

"Again, Stewart! Again!" Master Blark bellowed. "We're missing items from our store yet again!" Stew flinched at the enormous volume the dwarven merchant was able to produce when upset.

Stew groaned and found himself asking despite his better judegement, "What is it this time?" His voice only cracked slightly betraying his nerves.

"See for yourself," Master Blark said brusquely, waving a meaty hand towards the exposed contents of the thrown back canvas.

Stew kept pace with the wagon and looked inside. What he saw was an open crate of nails. Nails? All this fuss? Master Blark is upset over some missing nails? And then he realized, part of that thought was actually making it's way out his mouth and desperately sought to reclaim the words. "Nails? All this fu-" He began to cough in his effort to cut himself off.

Master Blark's face managed to be purple despite the dust from the road. "Yes! Nails!" A meaty hand pushed the right mutton chop up as he ran it from his chin up to his bald dome. He then shook a finger into the face of the world (or something like that anyway, Stew thought). "Never brook any part of your stores gone missing. Let someone think they can steal the small and they will soon take the large, lad."

Stew braced himself for the inevitable Abadoran fable about business that had led to that quotey sounding turn of phrase. He was not disappointed.

"Abador himself gave a reward to one of his faithful due to diligence in keeping proper care of inventory, let me tell you about it. Some thousands of years ago, a priest named Donagus the Even made a journey with a satchel of three boots, a ball of twine, 2 loaves of bread and a skin of water. As he walked, there came a crooked old crone up the road who approached him with her hood drawn closed..."

Whatever the rest of that story would have been, Stew suddenly heard Master Blark suck in his breath. Clop-clop, clop-clop...and Stew saw one of the most terrifying things he had encountered thus far in his life: Eramac on his horse approaching them.

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