Dungeon Master S's "Between the Lines" (Inactive)

Game Master Chris Marsh

TACTICAL MAP | HANDOUTS

Initiative Quickpost:

[dice=Enemies]d20[/dice]
[dice=Etain]d20+5[/dice]
[dice=Otto]d20+3[/dice]
[dice=Rodric]d20+5[/dice]
[dice=Kassanamir]d20+4[/dice]


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MAP TEMPLATES | Giantslayer | Fall of Plaguestone | Skull & Shackles |

Place your Arcane Mark here.


I've got a few choices available:
lvl 5 barbarian murder machine.
lvl 5 hybrid thrown/melee hammer guy
lvl 4 Dwarven Pirate
lvl 4 Merfolk "bard"


Male Human Consultant/19

I have... A 5th level Cleric of Shelyn. Or a 4th level Magus that might need work.

The Exchange

M Half Orc Alchmist/4

I've got a level 5 cleric and a level 3 shaman (who's pretty terrible). If I can find my rogue, he's a pretty a good choice too. I seem to have lost some of my characters. Let me see tomorrow night if i can find it.

Sovereign Court

Dwarf spiritualist (phantom blade) 5 HP 48/48 | AC 21 T 13 FF 13 CMD 19 | F +7 R +4 W +8 (+2 vs Poison +4 vs Spells) Darkvision 60ft Perception +12 (+1 vs surprise) | Init +7

Yarr.

Sovereign Court

Dwarf spiritualist (phantom blade) 5 HP 48/48 | AC 21 T 13 FF 13 CMD 19 | F +7 R +4 W +8 (+2 vs Poison +4 vs Spells) Darkvision 60ft Perception +12 (+1 vs surprise) | Init +7

Still here and ready to go!

Silver Crusade

Male Human Cleric of Shelyn 5 (HP: 38/38) | Init: +5 | AC: 18 T: 11, FF: 17 | Perception +14 | F: +6, R: +3, W: +10 | CMB: +4 | CMD: 15 | Adoration 7/7 (DC 17 Will save) | Buffs: None

Ready to go!

Grand Lodge

Female Half Elf Inquisitor 3 AC 17 TT13 FF14 HP 18/18 Init: +5 Per: 13 F: 3 R: 4 W: 5

The door opens and a welcome breeze flutters the tapestry on the wall. A woman walks in with the slink of "I hope I'm not the last one to arrive". She shuts the door and leans against the wall near the door.

With a small head nod and a slight smile, Hello.


MAP TEMPLATES | Giantslayer | Fall of Plaguestone | Skull & Shackles |

Pathfinders, you have been summoned to the capital city of Katapesh, by none other than Venture-Captain Wulessa Yuul

It is a hot, breezeless evening in Katapesh. Here, in a meeting room atop Farseer Tower, the curtains hang listlessly even with the windows thrown open. Unfortunately, the only thing hotter than the air is Venture-Captain Wulessa Yuul’s ire.

"“Why must I share Katapesh with so-called equals who are incompetent?” She huffs between gritted teeth, pacing back and forth before calming herself. “My pardon. Let me explain. Some months ago, the crypt of Zahari Mahiman—a scholar and sage from the Age of Enthronement—was rediscovered out in the wastes. I, personally, have long sought one artifact reputedly interred with him: the Monadistic Archive, a collection of scrolls from the Jistkan Imperium. Unfortunately,” she grits her teeth, “It fell under the purview of the Kotargo Lodge to arrange an expedition. Venture- Captain Dulm took his time getting things underway, in spite of my own requests for urgency and offers of assistance. As a result, by the time his agents got there, the place had already been looted."

“Phlegos Dulm’s complacency aside, not all is bleak. The adventurers who looted the crypt were not scholars; they were simply looking to exploit the wonders of the past. The Monadistic Archive, in particular, was sold to Palhuna Murqual, a merchant here in Katapesh. I believe he bought the archive assuming it was merely a magical storage device, not an esoteric repository of lore indecipherable by him. He has shown interest in selling—at a profit, of course—and I need you to make the purchase. I have an Abadaran promissory note that should cover the price, but he is crafty and may bargain for more. I want the archive, whatever it costs. I can’t pay more gold than I already have offered, but if you can find other means of appeasing Murqual, I encourage you to do so.”

Despite being reasonably neophyte Pathfinder agents, you may already know a thing or two about the Monadistic Archive. Make a Knowledge (Arcana) check. You may have also heard of the vendor Palhuna Murqual. Make a Knowledge (Local) check.

The Venture-Captain takes a deep breath and finishes as they always do, "Any questions?"

Grand Lodge

Female Half Elf Inquisitor 3 AC 17 TT13 FF14 HP 18/18 Init: +5 Per: 13 F: 3 R: 4 W: 5

know arcana: 1d20 + 1 ⇒ (1) + 1 = 2
know local: 1d20 + 1 ⇒ (6) + 1 = 7

Shocked that we are being sent out by such a legendary figure, Erain needs to take a few moments to collect herself. Her recollection is such that she almost forgets that she’s in Katapesh. Hoping that someone else would have questions she shakes her head no and observed the rest.

Sovereign Court

Dwarf spiritualist (phantom blade) 5 HP 48/48 | AC 21 T 13 FF 13 CMD 19 | F +7 R +4 W +8 (+2 vs Poison +4 vs Spells) Darkvision 60ft Perception +12 (+1 vs surprise) | Init +7

Otto, an old Saltbeard looks over his newfound Pathfinder companions before grumbling a bit towards the Venture Captain. "What else can ya tell us 'bout Palhuna?"

Dark Archive

M | Male Tiefling Rog 4 | hp 31/31| Init +4 | AC 18, T 14, FF 14 | CMB +5, CMD 19 | F +2 R +8 W +1 | Prcptn +7, SM +5

There's the sound of running feet and someone who sounds out of breath. A wiry part man, part demon bursts into the room, panting hard and looks around at everyone. "Crap, I'm late, aren't I? Sorry about that. It took a bit to get up here from Cheliax. Did I miss anything?"

Grand Lodge

Male Human Sorc AC 16 TT12 FF14 HP 30/30 Init: +8 F: 5 R:5 W:7

A semi-handsome, but definitely fragrant man approaches the group. Room for one more friends?

Grand Lodge

Female Half Elf Inquisitor 3 AC 17 TT13 FF14 HP 18/18 Init: +5 Per: 13 F: 3 R: 4 W: 5

With a visible sigh of relief for not being the last one there, and a glance at VC. She spoke up hoping to blunt the VC already piqued ire at the situation.

At the latest arrival "Yes."

With a look at Kassanamir. "We will put the lateness behind us, and yes you did.

We need to find an artifact taken from the Zahari Mahiman crypt called the Monadistic Archive. For other reasons the last known location of this tome was in the hands of a merchant called Palhuna Murqual. We are to go to the merchant and purchase this book for the lowest price possible. If the purchase price is more than the guaranteed funds from the bank of Abadar, then we need to figure out an alternate payment.

She leans back against the wall now taking time to contemplate why the hell she just cut off the Venture Captain.

Silver Crusade

Male Human Cleric of Shelyn 5 (HP: 38/38) | Init: +5 | AC: 18 T: 11, FF: 17 | Perception +14 | F: +6, R: +3, W: +10 | CMB: +4 | CMD: 15 | Adoration 7/7 (DC 17 Will save) | Buffs: None

Rodric smiles beatifically. "Of course, Jean-Paul. Join us."

He then thinks about what he knows...
Knowledge Arcana (max 10): 1d20 + 1 ⇒ (14) + 1 = 15
Knowledge Local (max 10): 1d20 + 1 ⇒ (17) + 1 = 18

To the Venture-Captain he says, "And is there any competition for the Monadistic Archive? Anyone who may try to outbid us?"


MAP TEMPLATES | Giantslayer | Fall of Plaguestone | Skull & Shackles |

Rodric doesn't really have any knowledge to share. The Venture-Captain adds, "We have a tentative deal, so there shouldn't be competition."

Wulessa drives the point home by handing you a promissory note worth 10,000 gp from the bank of Abadar. "Head to Murqual’s establishment in the Lower City. This is Katapeh, if you need to shop, you'll have plenty of opportunity. "


MAP TEMPLATES | Giantslayer | Fall of Plaguestone | Skull & Shackles |

Finding Murqual’s shop is easy enough. A few discreet inquiries lead through the Lower City to a wooden door crowned by a plaque that reads “Palhuna Murqual, Vendor of Fetters, Bindings, and Cages Mundane and Mystic.” His establishment defies the stereotype for a shop in the infamous Nightstalls. It boasts a permanent location, instead of one that could be broken down and moved with ease. It is quite lavishly appointed, rather than being a shadowy, smoky hovel, and the air smells of vanilla and cardamom rather than incense. Inside, deep carpeting covers the floor. Chains and shackles, ranging in size from mist-thin links to cuffs that would hold a titan, hang along one wall. Another wall holds an array of mirrors— some reflecting the room and some showing the insides of a bare cell. Lanterns and cages hang from ceiling rafters, and glass cases hold etched gemstones and glass bottles. A central space is cleared of wares, instead sporting several plush seats arranged around a silver samovar.

An obese man swaddled in silks occupies a sofa before the samovar. Standing to his left is a slim, younger man holding a ledger. The fat man makes a series of complicated hand gestures to the standing man, who, after a moment, bows to the PCs and speaks. “My esteemed master, Palhuna Murqual, bids you welcome. Please, be seated. Business should be conducted comfortably.”

Dark Archive

M | Male Tiefling Rog 4 | hp 31/31| Init +4 | AC 18, T 14, FF 14 | CMB +5, CMD 19 | F +2 R +8 W +1 | Prcptn +7, SM +5

At the mention of trying to find an artifact, Kassanamir instantly lights up. "Oooooh.. The Paracount.... I mean the head of the Dark Archives would be SO happy with me if I could bring that back! This is right up my alley!

He takes a minute to adjust his shining chain shirt, belt with a few weapons hanging from it, and his scabbard for his rapier, then adds "Um, so I'm not the best with people, and they tend to be scared of me. It's probably best if someone else does the talking."

Grand Lodge

Female Half Elf Inquisitor 3 AC 17 TT13 FF14 HP 18/18 Init: +5 Per: 13 F: 3 R: 4 W: 5

Ohh hand signals is it something one can decipher? Are the mirrors normal, or are they funhouse mirrors?

Silver Crusade

Male Human Cleric of Shelyn 5 (HP: 38/38) | Init: +5 | AC: 18 T: 11, FF: 17 | Perception +14 | F: +6, R: +3, W: +10 | CMB: +4 | CMD: 15 | Adoration 7/7 (DC 17 Will save) | Buffs: None

Rodric sweeps his cloak back, the flower of Shelyn flashing on the garment as he sits on the sofa. The breastplate he wears hardly makes a sound, testament to the quality of the armor. The cleric rests his glaive against the back of the sofa, and speaks. "Good day, Master Murqual. I am Rodric Dumont, Devotee of the Eternal Rose and Pathfinder. I and my colleagues are here on behalf of Venture-Captain Yuul for the acquisition of the Monadistic Archive. We are prepared to do business and, with your permission, would like to see a rapid conclusion to this engagement. Would that be satisfactory?"

If required, Take 10 on Diplomacy for 19

Sovereign Court

Dwarf spiritualist (phantom blade) 5 HP 48/48 | AC 21 T 13 FF 13 CMD 19 | F +7 R +4 W +8 (+2 vs Poison +4 vs Spells) Darkvision 60ft Perception +12 (+1 vs surprise) | Init +7

Otto grumbles and grunts, seemingly in agreement with Rodric.


MAP TEMPLATES | Giantslayer | Fall of Plaguestone | Skull & Shackles |

Deciphering the Hand Signals:

Linguistics or Sense Motive DC 20:

Curious...the “sign language” is just gesticulation without meaning.

As he passes around cups of mint tea, Rodric makes the offer. Murqual nods appreciatively at the sum of the promissory note but informs you via translator that he has already received an offer for the item well exceeding Wulessa’s bid. “While I respect the Pathfinder Society, to sell to you would seem favoritism. And I’m not inclined to favor one customer over another—without there being an equal favor, in return...” The translator leaves the last word hanging in the air.

Dark Archive

M | Male Tiefling Rog 4 | hp 31/31| Init +4 | AC 18, T 14, FF 14 | CMB +5, CMD 19 | F +2 R +8 W +1 | Prcptn +7, SM +5

Kassanamir looks at the other party members with a puzzled expression on his face. He Is obviously waiting for someone to say something before he has to jump in, which is never good.

Sovereign Court

Dwarf spiritualist (phantom blade) 5 HP 48/48 | AC 21 T 13 FF 13 CMD 19 | F +7 R +4 W +8 (+2 vs Poison +4 vs Spells) Darkvision 60ft Perception +12 (+1 vs surprise) | Init +7

sense motive take 10: 10 + 12 = 22

Otto grumbles "Out with it, what's it ya want us ta do.?"


MAP TEMPLATES | Giantslayer | Fall of Plaguestone | Skull & Shackles |

Otto doesn't really get a feel for what the merchant has in mind, but the reply is pretty clear. “I have three tasks. Because Palhuna Murqual is as generous as an oasis, you may decide among them for those which suit you.” He begins to count off tasks on his fingers. “I have some sensitive merchandise being delivered by problematic dealers. Another recent acquisition has some unpleasant protective magic that I need dealt with. Finally, you can be my agents to make a purchase from another acquaintance.”

Grand Lodge

Female Half Elf Inquisitor 3 AC 17 TT13 FF14 HP 18/18 Init: +5 Per: 13 F: 3 R: 4 W: 5

Sense Motive: 1d20 + 9 ⇒ (12) + 9 = 21

Choosing not to blow up the shop keeps ruse, Etain focuses on the speaker.

Three tasks seem a bit much how about you pick the one most important to you and we do that one in return for the tome? Asks the inquisitor in a serious yet almost flirty tone.


MAP TEMPLATES | Giantslayer | Fall of Plaguestone | Skull & Shackles |

Etain sense hesitant calculation on Murqual’s part before he decided upon three favors, he might be open to negotiation, but it'll take a gentle touch. Diplomacy check with a bit more talking. It need not be Etain if someone wants to back up the counteroffer of one task.

Grand Lodge

Male Human Sorc AC 16 TT12 FF14 HP 30/30 Init: +8 F: 5 R:5 W:7

Jean Paul nods with Etain. My friend...a favor for a favor is just how it works. We all get something we want, and leave happy. As Etain said, you get to pick what is most important to you.

T10 Diplomacy = 21


MAP TEMPLATES | Giantslayer | Fall of Plaguestone | Skull & Shackles |

There's a flurry of gestures, and no consensus. You feel like Jean Paul is ever so close from getting an agreement, but not close enough.

Dark Archive

M | Male Tiefling Rog 4 | hp 31/31| Init +4 | AC 18, T 14, FF 14 | CMB +5, CMD 19 | F +2 R +8 W +1 | Prcptn +7, SM +5

Kassanamir sighs somewhat in an exasperated fashion. He opens his mouth to speak, then stops. Then opens it again and stops. Finally, he says "Look, we're happy to help you out, really. But, it just seems to me like you're asking a lot from us for what we get in return. I think Etain is being more than reasonable here in her proposal."

diplomacy: 1d20 - 1 ⇒ (2) - 1 = 1

Grand Lodge

Male Human Sorc AC 16 TT12 FF14 HP 30/30 Init: +8 F: 5 R:5 W:7

Jean Paul glances at Kassanamir and mouths Stop farting


MAP TEMPLATES | Giantslayer | Fall of Plaguestone | Skull & Shackles |

Kassanamir's voice cracks, and his delivery is stilted. It's not his best work.

Per Slack, Rodric auto-succeeds at the aid. Since the player is travelling, I'll forgo the "say something in character" requirement for this one.

"Perhaps we can settle on TWO tasks then." The translator finally replies. "And because Murqual is a very generous host, you may pick which two tasks."

Reminder of the tasks:

Quote:
Otto doesn't really get a feel for what the merchant has in mind, but the reply is pretty clear. “I have three tasks. Because Palhuna Murqual is as generous as an oasis, you may decide among them for those which suit you.” He begins to count off tasks on his fingers. “I have some sensitive merchandise being delivered by problematic dealers. Another recent acquisition has some unpleasant protective magic that I need dealt with. Finally, you can be my agents to make a purchase from another acquaintance.”

The Exchange

M Half Orc Alchmist/4

Kassanamir looks over at Jean Paul with a questioning look on his face and shrugs.

The Exchange

M Half Orc Alchmist/4

Kassanamir looks at the others "I'm not one for protective magics personally, so my choice is the other two. But if you guys are good at that kind of thing, then sure, I'm in.

Grand Lodge

Male Human Sorc AC 16 TT12 FF14 HP 30/30 Init: +8 F: 5 R:5 W:7

Jean Paul speaks up How about dealing with the unpleasant magic and making a purchase from another acquaintance?

Grand Lodge

Male Human Sorc AC 16 TT12 FF14 HP 30/30 Init: +8 F: 5 R:5 W:7

Jean Paul looks to Kassanamir Or the first and third one?

Sovereign Court

Dwarf spiritualist (phantom blade) 5 HP 48/48 | AC 21 T 13 FF 13 CMD 19 | F +7 R +4 W +8 (+2 vs Poison +4 vs Spells) Darkvision 60ft Perception +12 (+1 vs surprise) | Init +7

Otto shrugs "Sound's like we're 'greed on da third one 'least."

Grand Lodge

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Male Human Sorc AC 16 TT12 FF14 HP 30/30 Init: +8 F: 5 R:5 W:7

First 2 are fine. Can you tell us about the dealers? Jean Paul responds


MAP TEMPLATES | Giantslayer | Fall of Plaguestone | Skull & Shackles |

Sold on the third. Just need a quorum on the other.

Dark Archive

M | Male Tiefling Rog 4 | hp 31/31| Init +4 | AC 18, T 14, FF 14 | CMB +5, CMD 19 | F +2 R +8 W +1 | Prcptn +7, SM +5

I'm good with whatever the group wants. I'll only be a pain in the ass about things later, but not now. You guys pick, and I'm in. We're Pathfinders after all. I'm sure we can deal with whatever it is, right?


MAP TEMPLATES | Giantslayer | Fall of Plaguestone | Skull & Shackles |

After some signing, “I have some special goods being shipped in from the savanna tonight. I am short on staff to take the delivery, and I don’t care to be seen meeting with the deliverers.... They’re gnolls. It’s a social status issue; I’m sure you understand. I’ve had dealings with this tribe before. They tend to ‘forget’ the agreed upon price. You’ll be carrying some additional funds—I regard it as a standard tax when dealing with them—but beyond that, I expect you to convince them that they’re not getting any extra.”

Grand Lodge

Male Human Sorc AC 16 TT12 FF14 HP 30/30 Init: +8 F: 5 R:5 W:7
Jean Paul Gaultier wrote:
First 2 are fine. Can you tell us about the dealers? Jean Paul responds

Whoops. I meant first and third. Screw magics! sorry.

Grand Lodge

Male Human Sorc AC 16 TT12 FF14 HP 30/30 Init: +8 F: 5 R:5 W:7

Jean Paul asks What are the goods, and the agreed upon price? Did you sign an agreement?

Dark Archive

M | Male Tiefling Rog 4 | hp 31/31| Init +4 | AC 18, T 14, FF 14 | CMB +5, CMD 19 | F +2 R +8 W +1 | Prcptn +7, SM +5

Yes, it's very important to have contracts and deals. Everyone should have them. They avoid unfortunate.... misunderstandings. You seem like a successful businessman. I'm sure you have them in place, no?"


MAP TEMPLATES | Giantslayer | Fall of Plaguestone | Skull & Shackles |

“They are goods I require—that’s all you need know. I'll be giving you the agreed upon gold, and the unofficial 'tax' that goes with it.”

Grand Lodge

Male Human Sorc AC 16 TT12 FF14 HP 30/30 Init: +8 F: 5 R:5 W:7

Okay Jean Paul responds.

Dark Archive

M | Male Tiefling Rog 4 | hp 31/31| Init +4 | AC 18, T 14, FF 14 | CMB +5, CMD 19 | F +2 R +8 W +1 | Prcptn +7, SM +5

Then we're set? Where do we need to go for these 'favors'?"


MAP TEMPLATES | Giantslayer | Fall of Plaguestone | Skull & Shackles |

"You'll be meeting them at the Twilight Gate, midnight tonight. Good luck."

The Twilight Gate is an easy landmark to find.

If you're ready, I can turn the clock to just before Midnight...

Dark Archive

M | Male Tiefling Rog 4 | hp 31/31| Init +4 | AC 18, T 14, FF 14 | CMB +5, CMD 19 | F +2 R +8 W +1 | Prcptn +7, SM +5

I'm set if everyone else is.


MAP TEMPLATES | Giantslayer | Fall of Plaguestone | Skull & Shackles |

Murqual sets you up with a small donkey-pulled cart before departing his shop. Most of its contents consist of trade goods, bolts of cloth, and several casks of liquor. In addition, he gives you two sacks containing 100 gp each as "additional 'payment' if the gnolls prove recalcitrant."

By night, the streets of the Twilight Gate district are mostly empty. The courtyard surrounding the Ruined Monastery, a popular tourist attraction by day, is even more deserted than the surrounding streets. Perhaps this is what made it the choice location for Murqual’s gnoll “distributors,” or perhaps the gnolls feel comfortable in the shadow of this former home to Lamashtu’s faithful. In either case, the shadows lie thick underneath these crumbling walls.

The gnolls are already waiting in the plaza for you. Behind them in the gloom is a small crate. Unsurprisingly, they greet you with snarling disdain, "You aren’t the ones Murqual normally sends!"

The other two snarl and bark in their own tongue:

Gnoll:

"Those linens are moth-ridden.”
“There’s only one donkey?”
“Do they expect the tribe to starve?”

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