GM Dak - War for the Crown 1

Game Master Dakcenturi

Chapter 2: Songbird, Scion, Saboteur
Part 1: Songbird

Pics / Maps / Loot & Notes

Start Day: Oathday, 1st of Pharast, 4718
Current Day: Moonday, 12nd of Pharast, 4718


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Male Human Cleric 4 | HP 23/23 | AC 15 | T 11 | FF 14 | CMD 12 | Fort +5 | Ref +3 | Will +9* | Init +2 | Perc +12
*:
-1 vs compulsion (see drawback)

stealth dot (wow you saw this!!!)


Tiefling (Pitborn) Brawler 3 | HP 7/29 | AC 14 T 11 FF 13 | CMB +7 CMD 18 | Fort +5 Ref +4 Will +1 | Init +6 | Perc +8 | Martial Flexibility 2/4

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Male Alias: "Sir Kalegos Seldry" | Human Vigilante (avenger) 4 | HP 31/31 | AC 25 | T 14 | FF 21 | CMD 19 | Fort +4 | Ref +6 | Will +6 | Init +2 | Perception +8; low-light vision

Dot


HR | MM | RotRL1 | RotRL2 | SD | SS1 | SS2 | WftC_1 | WftC_2 |

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CG Female Human Bard 4 | Speed 30 ft. | AC 17, T 12, FF 16 | hp 27/27 | Fort +3, Ref +6, Will +6 | Init +11 | Percep +7 | CMD 16 | Spells 1st 5/5 2nd 2/2 Bardic Performance 15/15 | Reroll @ +3 1/1 | Conditions: none Wand CLW x89

american ninja dot


HR | MM | RotRL1 | RotRL2 | SD | SS1 | SS2 | WftC_1 | WftC_2 |

At some point before today

Eregos:
You receive a message from Lady Lotheed that reads

"Mr. Villarius, Or perhaps it is Mr. Kryn? I'm sorry to hear about your families misfortunes. Though it seems you are rather adept at bouncing back from the circumstances you found yourself in. I have a proposition for you and I hear you may be well suited to be of aid. I need some assistance with a few tasks at the Gala and in exchange I can ensure you can gain admittance to the event. Not only will you be serving my interests, but this will provide you the opportunity to make contacts and meet influential parties that could be of use to you in your future endeavors. I hope you can meet me at the designated location promptly at 8:00pm this Oathday."

Included is a map that shows the location of a cafe several blocks from the senate building.

Hazel:
You receive a message from Lady Lotheed that reads

"Ms. Hazel Fothergilla, First let me say thank you for your service to Taldor! It takes a special individual to serve for so long, even with all the hardships I'm sure you faced due to your heritage. I've heard you fell on rough times after your retirement and I am hopeful I may be able to assist. I need some assistance with a few tasks at the Exaltation Gala and in exchange I can ensure you can gain admittance to the event. Furthermore, it is my hope that with your aid, we might be able to assist in bringing about the necessary change needed to drag Taldor from the continued and extended decay that it has faced for so long. I hope you can meet with me at the designated location promptly at 8:00pm this Oathday."

Included is a map that shows the location of a cafe several blocks from the senate building.

Sveng:
You receive a message from Lady Lotheed that reads

"Mr. Sveng Catus, The work you have done for some mutual friends has brought me to write to you. I applaud you for your sucesses in your work, but hear just recently you ran afoot of the law and nearly found yourself in a bit of a mess. I feel that you, and in fact, Taldor could be so much more. It is my hope that you might consider assisting me in working toward bringing change to Taldor. I need some assistance with a few tasks at the Gala, some tasks of which I feel you would be particularly adept, and in exchange I can ensure you can gain admittance to the event. This would be a wonderful opportunity, not only to assist me in bringing about a brighter future for all of Taldor, but to give you the opportunity to make contacts and meet influential parties that could potentially be of use to you in the future. I hope you can meet with me at the designated location promptly at 8:00pm this Oathday."

Included is a map that shows the location of a cafe several blocks from the senate building.

Sydney:
You receive a message from Lady Lotheed that reads

"Mr. Sydney Streegrenet, I've heard of your aspirations towards the senate. I believe I may be able to help you get one step closer to your goals. I need some assistance with a few tasks at the Exaltation Gala and in exchange I can ensure you can gain admittance to the event. This would be a wonderful opportunity to make contacts and meet influential parties that could be of use to you in your endeavors. I hope you can meet with me at the designated location promptly at 8:00pm this Oathday."

Included is a map that shows the location of a cafe several blocks from the senate building.

Valeria:
You receive a message from Lady Lotheed that reads

"Ms. Valeria Tanessen, I'm pleased to hear that things have changed for the better in terms of your career. While I am glad you are now on the path to achieving your dreams, I feel there may be something more I can do to assist you. I need some assistance with a few tasks at the Exaltation Gala and in exchange I can ensure you can gain admittance to the event. As you know, everyone who is anyone will be at the Gala. This would be a wonderful opportunity, not only to assist me in bringing about a better Taldor, but to give you the opportunity to make contacts and meet influential parties that I know could be of use to you in the future. I hope you can meet with me at the designated location promptly at 8:00pm this Oathday."

Included is a map that shows the location of a cafe several blocks from the senate building.

Piri:
You receive a message from Lady Lotheed that reads

"Mr. Piri Erudishen, I've heard of some of the strife your family has faced in their betrayl. I applaud you for your perseverance in the face of such difficulties. It is my hope that you might consider assisting me in working to bring change in Taldor for a brighter future for us all. I have an opportunity for you to not only assist me in working toward a better Taldor, but also to give you the opportunity to make contacts and meet influential parties that could be of use to you in the future. I need some assistance with a few tasks at the Gala and in exchange I can ensure you can gain admittance to the event. I hope you can meet with me at the designated location promptly at 8:00pm this Oathday."

Included is a map that shows the location of a cafe several blocks from the senate building.

Oathday, 1st of Pharast, 4718

Oppara is Taldor's thriving capital—a shining monument to the grandeur and majesty once common to the entire Taldan empire. Seated on the black cliffs of the River Porthmos in Opparos Prefecture, Oppara bears all the gravitas and extravagance that 6,000 years of history have conferred upon it. The roofs and domes of Oppara were once plated with gold, earning it the nickname "the Gilded City," and though past rulers stripped the gold away long ago to pay for the empire's follies, the wealth and decadence of Taldor's capital keep the spirit of that name alive.

Oppara serves as Taldor's primary trade center, with traffic coming both from Taldor's interior via the River Porthmos and from the steady stream of international vessels sailing in from the Inner Sea. It is also the home of Taldor's government, hosting both the Imperial Palace of the grand prince and the polished marble halls of the senate. As the economic and political hub of Taldor, Oppara is the beating heart of the empire and the center of Taldan culture. Twin harbors provide goods to the city’s thriving marketplaces and restaurants, and they're often so crammed with ships that the river cannot be seen. Public fountains and marble statues can be found at many major crossroads and plazas. Columned villas and grandiose temples from every age of Taldor's history line the streets, and even the humbler merchant districts are holdovers from an unparalleled age of glory. Most of Oppara's buildings are made of carved stone, and the roads are paved with either intricate mosaics or well-fitted cobblestones. Much of the city's advanced public works have withstood the test of time, including its labyrinthine sewer system and the network of stone gutters that keep the streets clear of summer rain. The Grand Bridge of the Empire, emerging from the southeastern shore of the city's heart to cross the massive Porthmos, remains one of the most ambitious and impressive engineering marvels in the Inner Sea. Two magically animated lion sculptures stand sentinel atop Oppara's main gate, offering a glimpse into the greatness that currently lies dormant within the empire. At night, the city is lit with tens of thousands of lanterns, causing it to shine like a beacon in the darkness.

Every year, the empire of Taldor celebrates the Grand Day of Exaltation. On this prestigious day, the Grand Prince is empowered to elevate a commoner to the ranks of nobility. The event itself is the embodiment of formality, with the elevated commoner selected months or years in advance. What makes the day truly special is that the preceding week is a holiday throughout the empire. Nobles, senators, and hopeful petitioners fill the capital city of Oppara for galas, performances, and parades. To the nobility, the week before the Grand Day of Exaltation is a time to conduct important business deals, issue noble proclamations, and hold private parties. With so many prominent politicians arriving from across the empire, the Taldan senate uses Exaltation Week to vote on matters of nationwide importance.

Visitors flock to Oppara in the days leading up to the Grand Day of Exaltation. The populace of the city doubles during this time, making Oppara larger than any other city in the Inner Sea region, save Absalom. The self-importance of the already prideful Taldan people swells in equal measure. Street vendors sell traditional Taldan foods—anchovy skewers, anglebobs, canal crossings, clamguards, jubilee pie, honeyflake, long wine, yonder tarts, and more—including regional delicacies from separated provinces such as Andoran mince and Chelish raven cake. Family banners and provincial flags drape the sides of most buildings, with merchants hawking heraldry ranging from replica banners of the old Armies of Exploration to wooden swords and handheld Taldan flags for children. Taverns offer themed drink and food, with varying bars adopting well-known nobles from the long history of the empire as their mascot or self-declared patron.

Alongside all the pomp and circumstance filling Oppara is a noteworthy moment in history: the imperial senate is poised to hold a historic vote to end primogeniture. The potential end of the millennia-standing law of succession is the talk of the town. Streets and taverns are abuzz with conversations; some wish to see the law thrown down to pave a way for Princess Eutropia to ascend to the throne, while hardliners (especially elder nobles) believe the vote to be another wound in the great history of the empire, allowing not only the rabble-rousing Eutropia to inherit family power, but every ill-deserving woman. Regardless of the outcome, both sides of the debate agree that life will go on, and despite the serious ramifications of primogeniture's potential end, the streets of Oppara hold no signs of unrest during the jubilant celebrations of the Grand Day of Exaltation.

Each of you has another reason to be excited for the Grand Day of Exaltation. You have each been contacted by Lady Martella Lotheed. She has contacted you to serve as her agents at the Grand Day of Exaltation Gala at the senate building. Martella has asked that each of you meet with her the evening before the Exaltation Gala to familiarize yourselves with your fellow agents, get details on the missions and to ask any questions you may have. The meetup is to take place at a small cafe several blocks from the senate building.

Before your meeting, you may use Diplomacy, Knowledge (local), or Knowledge (nobility) to make checks to learn more about your employer and the political scene in Oppara. Each of you may roll for each of the given subjects. The available subjects are: the Grand Day of Exaltation, Grand Prince Stavian III, Martella Lotheed, and Princess Eutropia.

You may also each attempt a DC 15 Diplomacy check to gather information and hear a rumor that is currently circling throughout Oppara.


Male Alias: "Sir Kalegos Seldry" | Human Vigilante (avenger) 4 | HP 31/31 | AC 25 | T 14 | FF 21 | CMD 19 | Fort +4 | Ref +6 | Will +6 | Init +2 | Perception +8; low-light vision

Diplomacy, Grand Day of Exaltation: 1d20 + 10 ⇒ (18) + 10 = 28
Diplomacy, Grand Prince Stavian III: 1d20 + 10 ⇒ (13) + 10 = 23
Diplomacy, Martella Lotheed: 1d20 + 10 ⇒ (11) + 10 = 21
Diplomacy, Princess Eutropia: 1d20 + 10 ⇒ (16) + 10 = 26
Diplomacy, Rumor: 1d20 + 10 ⇒ (10) + 10 = 20

Eregos nervously made his way through the crowds. He hadn't walked the streets near the Senate building since his fall from grace - too much chance of being recognized. Still, he couldn't pass up the opportunity Martella Lotheed had granted him - access to the Gala was desperately needed for finding a way to strike back at Pythareus, as well as restoring the family name. Of course, he wouldn't venture to the Gala as Eregos Villarius - that was why he'd created Hargus Kryn, after all. Still, if this eased Hargus's entry, it would be worth it.

Approaching the cafe, he looked about for his prospective employer. Once he found her, he'd move to take a seat at her table. If he couldn't find her - well, he'd just grab a seat and wait.


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Male Human Cleric 4 | HP 23/23 | AC 15 | T 11 | FF 14 | CMD 12 | Fort +5 | Ref +3 | Will +9* | Init +2 | Perc +12
*:
-1 vs compulsion (see drawback)

The best and the worst gather here in their squalor and riches. Each cries out for a bigger piece of the pie regardless of what they have. They range from quiet beggars to vicious cutthroats. Their weapons are as varied as the fish in the sea. Accomplished goals can tilt the scales towards tyranny or anarchy or anywhere else, or could ripple and fade into nothing. Each person has a role that they try to usurp with or clench onto with all their might.

It makes me wonder what role you play, Lady Lotheed.

Sveng thinks about the note for the hundredth time. It was official, direct, courteous. It also showed an aptitude for research, enough to be competent so that this wasn't a waste of time, but not so much that she held sway over him. There was also careful use of vague language, which shows caution but also means her hand is partially obscured from him.

So many questions.

But answering questions is one of his specialties.

Sveng sits in the cafe at a corner table, facing the doorway and holding a small blue book in one hand and a mug of coffee in the other. He leans back casually, his eyes slowly scanning over the pages with the occasional page turn and sip of coffee. He is dressed well, with a tall and slim build and sharply tied back hair framing his sharp facial features. One could not imagine an individual gathering less attention than the man sitting quietly in the corner. But his eyes flick up frequently, scanning the cafe each time the door swings open a sharp look.

In truth he had been here several times over the past few hours to case the building. Checking the nearby roofs, inquiring with locals and neighbors to learn any information he could, carefully gathering every shred of leverage he could manage. He had detected nothing amiss, and at seven he made his way inside and asked for a table. So far nothing had raised any red flags, beyond the vague objective of the note itself. After much thought, he took the calculated risk to follow the instructions.

So here he sits, reading and sipping and watching.

Dice Rolls:
Knowledge (local), Grand Day of Exaltation: 1d20 + 12 ⇒ (3) + 12 = 15 using recall ability
Knowledge (local), Grand Prince Stavian III: 1d20 + 12 ⇒ (19) + 12 = 31
Knowledge (local), Martella Lotheed: 1d20 + 12 ⇒ (10) + 12 = 22
Knowledge (local), Princess Eutropia: 1d20 + 12 ⇒ (3) + 12 = 15 using recall ability
Diplomacy, Rumor (DC 15): 1d20 + 7 ⇒ (4) + 7 = 11

Recall Knowledge (local), Grand Day of Exaltation: 1d20 + 12 + 4 ⇒ (16) + 12 + 4 = 32
Recall Knowledge (local), Princess Eutropia: 1d20 + 12 + 4 ⇒ (7) + 12 + 4 = 23

Recall Ability:
Knowledge (Memory) Domain You are a scholar and a sage of legends. In addition, you treat all Knowledge skills as class skills.

Recall With a touch, you can cause a creature to recall some bit of forgotten lore or information. The creature can retry any Knowledge skill check it has made within the past minute, gaining a insight bonus on the check equal to your Wisdom modifier. You can use this ability a number times per day equal to 3 + your Wisdom modifier.

I have this ability and its daily uses tracked on my character sheet.


CG Female Human Bard 4 | Speed 30 ft. | AC 17, T 12, FF 16 | hp 27/27 | Fort +3, Ref +6, Will +6 | Init +11 | Percep +7 | CMD 16 | Spells 1st 5/5 2nd 2/2 Bardic Performance 15/15 | Reroll @ +3 1/1 | Conditions: none Wand CLW x89

Knowledge Nobility, Grand Day of Exaltation: 1d20 + 9 ⇒ (14) + 9 = 23
Knowledge Nobility, Grand Prince Stavian III: 1d20 + 9 ⇒ (5) + 9 = 14
Knowledge Nobility, Martella Lotheed: 1d20 + 9 ⇒ (20) + 9 = 29
Knowledge Nobility, Princess Eutropia: 1d20 + 9 ⇒ (1) + 9 = 10
Diplomacy, Rumor, Rising Star +2, 1/day: 1d20 + 8 + 2 ⇒ (18) + 8 + 2 = 28

After sleeping in, Valeria took a long hot bath and went through several clothes changes to figure out what would fit her mood best that day. Thankfully, she planned to take her sweet time as her next commitment wasn't until 8 bells tonight. Later she sought assistance with her nails in the shops below, and was glad to see that she could be be seen for a manicure and pedicure right away. After getting her hair done as well, she settled for a quick two hour-long shopping spree, which didn't yield as much as she'd like due to the long lines brought about by the festival. Still she was able to find just the thing for her rendez-vous tonight, and packaged the gift carefully: a pocket-sized abacus. Lady Lotheed would make good use of it, Valeria thought, as the woman seemed constantly steeped in numbers, dates and multiple concurrent projects.

By the time she arrived at the cafe, she was absolutely starving, and was hoping the Lady would have ordered some food already. She headed directly for Martella, kissed her on each cheek and sat down.

"How AAAARE you?!!??? you look absolutely splendid!! how have yoooou been??? here: a small gift... nothing large, but something I hope you'll find useful. I'm afraid it'll be nowhere near as useful as the help and introductions you've made for me. Work, life and EVERYTHING has been... well, just GREAT since you came into my life Martella! how can I EVER repay you??"

Valeria is slightly loud at times, perhaps in part to conceal her growling stomach. Just in part.


Tiefling (Pitborn) Brawler 3 | HP 7/29 | AC 14 T 11 FF 13 | CMB +7 CMD 18 | Fort +5 Ref +4 Will +1 | Init +6 | Perc +8 | Martial Flexibility 2/4

Hazel scowls at her reflection in the mirror, pulling a black top-hat forward on her head until her horns are concealed entirely. She rarely tries to hide her demonic features, and dares anyone to challenge her for it, but she has no time for a fight today. She hopes that this opportunity is worth it; the irony of hiding herself to meet a woman who speaks of change is not lost on Hazel, and it makes her uncomfortable.

"A bit s#&~, isn't it?" She says to her reflection, and smiles widely, revealing wickedly sharp teeth.

She leaves her room behind the bar, locking up the building behind her, and begins the long walk uptown. The exercise does her good, and by the time she reaches the cafe, right on time, her spirits have lifted a little.

She steps inside without hesitation, looking around for her prospective employer.

Diplomacy, Grand Day of Exaltation: 1d20 + 6 ⇒ (19) + 6 = 25
Diplomacy, Grand Prince Stavian III: 1d20 + 6 ⇒ (9) + 6 = 15
Diplomacy, Martella Lotheed: 1d20 + 6 ⇒ (9) + 6 = 15
Diplomacy, Princess Eutropia: 1d20 + 6 ⇒ (8) + 6 = 14
Diplomacy, Gather Information: 1d20 + 6 ⇒ (20) + 6 = 26


Aasimir Investigator (Empiricist)4 AC 119|T14|FF16|HP35 Init+3|Perc+11|Fort 3|Ref 7(+1)|Will 4(+2)|Darkvision 60|DR Acid, cold, elec.|

Diplomacy, Rumor: 1d20 + 4 ⇒ (13) + 4 = 17
Knowledge (nobility), Grand Day of Exaltation:: 1d20 + 9 ⇒ (19) + 9 = 28
Knowledge (nobility), Martella Lotheed:: 1d20 + 9 ⇒ (2) + 9 = 11
Knowledge (nobility), Princess Eutropia:: 1d20 + 9 ⇒ (5) + 9 = 14
Knowledge (nobility), Grand Prince Stavian III:: 1d20 + 9 ⇒ (11) + 9 = 20

Add inspiration to the check for Lotheed and Eutropia
inspiration Lotheed: : 1d6 ⇒ 2
inspiration Eutropia:: 1d6 ⇒ 2

Given what Piri knows of the events of the day and the people involved, Piri surmises it would be a beneficial step toward his goals to meet with Lotheed at the appointed time. An additional bonus would be able to show up more incognito to the masses, so as not to involve his family name right away, until he can see how it goes.

Piri makes his way to the appointment, arriving 15 minutes early to reconnoiter. Mentally marking his exit points and vulnerabilities he awaits a meeting while ruminating What could this Lotheed woman want or hope to gain by recruiting me, and how can I maximize the benefit other than financial?


LN Human Pact Wizard 4 HP: 25/25 AC: 10 Tch: 10 FF: 10 CMD: 12 | F +3 R +2 W +7 | Init: +1 Perc: +6 | Active: none

Diplomacy, Grand Day of Exaltation: 1d20 + 9 ⇒ (13) + 9 = 22
Diplomacy, Grand Prince Stavian III: 1d20 + 9 ⇒ (13) + 9 = 22
Diplomacy, Martella Lotheed: 1d20 + 9 ⇒ (15) + 9 = 24
Diplomacy, Princess Eutropia: 1d20 + 9 ⇒ (17) + 9 = 26
Diplomacy, Gather Information: 1d20 + 9 ⇒ (12) + 9 = 21

I hope this pans out to be as beneficial as promised."

Sydney Streegrenet arrives promptly at 8pm, well dressed and groomed. "I am here at the request of Lady Lotheed." He looks around quickly, but waits patiently for the cafe attendant to lead him to his party.


HR | MM | RotRL1 | RotRL2 | SD | SS1 | SS2 | WftC_1 | WftC_2 |

GM:

1: 1d10 ⇒ 5
2: 1d10 ⇒ 10
3: 1d10 ⇒ 8
4: 1d10 ⇒ 2
5: 1d10 ⇒ 6

Eregos:

As you walk toward the cafe you overhear two noble men talking about the upcoming Gala. What grabs your attention though is when one of the men exclaims "My uncle is in the Lion Blades, and he says the Qadirans are planning to kidnap Princess Eutropia tonight to ransom!" The other man looks suspicious of the statement and the two begin to argue about it as they continue on their way.

You know the Grand Day of Exaltation is the one day every year when the emperor can elevate a commoner of unusual skill or service to the ranks of nobility. Because people travel from all over the empire to witness the exaltation, many balls and political events take place in the preceding week, and the senate usually votes on matters of national importance immediately beforehand. This year’s noble-to-be is a wide-eyed weaver from the village of Breezy Creek, whose beautiful tapestries have adorned the royal palace and many other royal homes for a decade.

You also know Grand Prince Stavian III is the emperor of Taldor. Grand Prince Stavian III has no male heir, and he has refused to have any further children since the tragic death of his only son, Carrius, in a riding accident 20 years ago. With the emperor getting on in years, some people worry how this will affect succession. The emperor has made no secret of his disdain for Princess Eutropia’s social crusades, especially her efforts to overturn primogeniture so she can inherit the throne, but he has been uncharacteristically quiet about it this past year. Rumors abound that his health is slipping and he has accepted her efforts.

You know that the wealthy Lotheed family has been a strong supporter of the Stavians for almost 100 years. They have a long family tradition of arcane magic, adding to their wealth and prestige. Martella is the black sheep of her family, being a result of an extramarital dalliance with a Qadiran diplomat. She lacks her family’s gift for magic as well, adding to their resentment. Despite her family’s disdain, Martella still commands some wealth and has extensive contacts, having attended the Sinora Academia, Taldor’s most exclusive girls’ school.

You also know Princess Eutropia is the adult daughter of Grand Prince Stavian III and has a scandalous reputation for making trouble and fighting in the streets. Eutropia is a social reformer, eager to establish schools and other public resources for the poor, and remove political or family restrictions for women and various minorities. Rumors have circulated for a decade that her ultimate goal is to overturn primogeniture, Taldor’s ancient law, stating that only male heirs may inherit the Lion Throne and become the first empress of Taldor. The princess’s reputation for “fighting in the streets” largely hails from her skill as a fencer, a sport she excelled at during her schooling at the Sinora Academia. Many times in her twenties she matched blades with chauvinistic politicians who would otherwise refuse to let her speak or act within political circles, and those early public duels helped her win unexpected support for her later social reforms as well as a reputation as an impolite, unladylike brute.

Sveng:

You know the Grand Day of Exaltation is the one day every year when the emperor can elevate a commoner of unusual skill or service to the ranks of nobility. Because people travel from all over the empire to witness the exaltation, many balls and political events take place in the preceding week, and the senate usually votes on matters of national importance immediately beforehand. This year’s noble-to-be is a wide-eyed weaver from the village of Breezy Creek, whose beautiful tapestries have adorned the royal palace and many other royal homes for a decade.

You also know Grand Prince Stavian III is the emperor of Taldor. Grand Prince Stavian III has no male heir, and he has refused to have any further children since the tragic death of his only son, Carrius, in a riding accident 20 years ago. With the emperor getting on in years, some people worry how this will affect succession. The emperor has made no secret of his disdain for Princess Eutropia’s social crusades, especially her efforts to overturn primogeniture so she can inherit the throne, but he has been uncharacteristically quiet about it this past year. Rumors abound that his health is slipping and he has accepted her efforts.

You know that the wealthy Lotheed family has been a strong supporter of the Stavians for almost 100 years. They have a long family tradition of arcane magic, adding to their wealth and prestige. Martella is the black sheep of her family, being a result of an extramarital dalliance with a Qadiran diplomat. She lacks her family’s gift for magic as well, adding to their resentment. Despite her family’s disdain, Martella still commands some wealth and has extensive contacts, having attended the Sinora Academia, Taldor’s most exclusive girls’ school.

You also know Princess Eutropia is the adult daughter of Grand Prince Stavian III and has a scandalous reputation for making trouble and fighting in the streets. Eutropia is a social reformer, eager to establish schools and other public resources for the poor, and remove political or family restrictions for women and various minorities. Rumors have circulated for a decade that her ultimate goal is to overturn primogeniture, Taldor’s ancient law, stating that only male heirs may inherit the Lion Throne and become the first empress of Taldor. The princess’s reputation for “fighting in the streets” largely hails from her skill as a fencer, a sport she excelled at during her schooling at the Sinora Academia. Many times in her twenties she matched blades with chauvinistic politicians who would otherwise refuse to let her speak or act within political circles, and those early public duels helped her win unexpected support for her later social reforms as well as a reputation as an impolite, unladylike brute.

Valeria:

As you are getting your nails done you overhear two noble women talking about the princess. What really draws your attention is when you overhear one of them note "Ugh, Eutropia brought that disgusting mutt of hers to the Elbistan Tournament last spring, and the wretched beast drooled on the silk table dressings. She’d never get away with such impropriety if her father weren’t pulling strings to protect her." The other woman nods her acknowledgment but doesn't speak up letting the chatty one continue on with her complaints as you grow tired of listening into her constant complaints.

You know the Grand Day of Exaltation is the one day every year when the emperor can elevate a commoner of unusual skill or service to the ranks of nobility. Because people travel from all over the empire to witness the exaltation, many balls and political events take place in the preceding week, and the senate usually votes on matters of national importance immediately beforehand. This year’s noble-to-be is a wide-eyed weaver from the village of Breezy Creek, whose beautiful tapestries have adorned the royal palace and many other royal homes for a decade.

You also know Grand Prince Stavian III is the emperor of Taldor. Grand Prince Stavian III has no male heir, and he has refused to have any further children since the tragic death of his only son, Carrius, in a riding accident 20 years ago. With the emperor getting on in years, some people worry how this will affect succession.

You know that the wealthy Lotheed family has been a strong supporter of the Stavians for almost 100 years. They have a long family tradition of arcane magic, adding to their wealth and prestige. Martella is the black sheep of her family, being a result of an extramarital dalliance with a Qadiran diplomat. She lacks her family’s gift for magic as well, adding to their resentment. Despite her family’s disdain, Martella still commands some wealth and has extensive contacts, having attended the Sinora Academia, Taldor’s most exclusive girls’ school.

You also know Princess Eutropia is the adult daughter of Grand Prince Stavian III and has a scandalous reputation for making trouble and fighting in the streets.

Hazel:

As you approach the cafe you overhear a passing conversation between a nobleman and his wife. The woman notes "Lady Morilla is back in town from Absalom. I wonder if she’s performing for the Exaltation Gala.". The husband shrugs and doesn't comment as they continue on their way.

You know the Grand Day of Exaltation is the one day every year when the emperor can elevate a commoner of unusual skill or service to the ranks of nobility. Because people travel from all over the empire to witness the exaltation, many balls and political events take place in the preceding week, and the senate usually votes on matters of national importance immediately beforehand. This year’s noble-to-be is a wide-eyed weaver from the village of Breezy Creek, whose beautiful tapestries have adorned the royal palace and many other royal homes for a decade.

You also know Grand Prince Stavian III is the emperor of Taldor. Grand Prince Stavian III has no male heir, and he has refused to have any further children since the tragic death of his only son, Carrius, in a riding accident 20 years ago. With the emperor getting on in years, some people worry how this will affect succession.

You know that the wealthy Lotheed family has been a strong supporter of the Stavians for almost 100 years. They have a long family tradition of arcane magic, adding to their wealth and prestige. Martella is the black sheep of her family, being a result of an extramarital dalliance with a Qadiran diplomat. She lacks her family’s gift for magic as well, adding to their resentment.

You also know Princess Eutropia is the adult daughter of Grand Prince Stavian III and has a scandalous reputation for making trouble and fighting in the streets.

Piri:

When you arrive early and look over the building from the outside you overhear two nobleman's conversations as they pass by. One of the men notes “Ah, I got to see Mr. Smiles at Duke Talbot’s reception this week—the one where Baronet Jivarus got into a row with the servant—and that jester is delightful. Whimsical and biting all at once, and such grace. A tad off-putting, though.”

You know the Grand Day of Exaltation is the one day every year when the emperor can elevate a commoner of unusual skill or service to the ranks of nobility. Because people travel from all over the empire to witness the exaltation, many balls and political events take place in the preceding week, and the senate usually votes on matters of national importance immediately beforehand. This year’s noble-to-be is a wide-eyed weaver from the village of Breezy Creek, whose beautiful tapestries have adorned the royal palace and many other royal homes for a decade.

You also know Grand Prince Stavian III is the emperor of Taldor. Grand Prince Stavian III has no male heir, and he has refused to have any further children since the tragic death of his only son, Carrius, in a riding accident 20 years ago. With the emperor getting on in years, some people worry how this will affect succession. The emperor has made no secret of his disdain for Princess Eutropia’s social crusades, especially her efforts to overturn primogeniture so she can inherit the throne, but he has been uncharacteristically quiet about it this past year. Rumors abound that his health is slipping and he has accepted her efforts.

You know that the wealthy Lotheed family has been a strong supporter of the Stavians for almost 100 years. They have a long family tradition of arcane magic, adding to their wealth and prestige.

You also know Princess Eutropia is the adult daughter of Grand Prince Stavian III and has a scandalous reputation for making trouble and fighting in the streets.

Sydney:

On your way to the cafe you overhear a couple of nobles chatting, one of the women remarks “High Strategos Pythareus is back in the capital. I guess that means the marriage between him and the princess is back on. He’s so handsome; he’ll make a lovely emperor.”

You know the Grand Day of Exaltation is the one day every year when the emperor can elevate a commoner of unusual skill or service to the ranks of nobility. Because people travel from all over the empire to witness the exaltation, many balls and political events take place in the preceding week, and the senate usually votes on matters of national importance immediately beforehand. This year’s noble-to-be is a wide-eyed weaver from the village of Breezy Creek, whose beautiful tapestries have adorned the royal palace and many other royal homes for a decade.

You also know Grand Prince Stavian III is the emperor of Taldor. Grand Prince Stavian III has no male heir, and he has refused to have any further children since the tragic death of his only son, Carrius, in a riding accident 20 years ago. With the emperor getting on in years, some people worry how this will affect succession. The emperor has made no secret of his disdain for Princess Eutropia’s social crusades, especially her efforts to overturn primogeniture so she can inherit the throne, but he has been uncharacteristically quiet about it this past year. Rumors abound that his health is slipping and he has accepted her efforts.

You know that the wealthy Lotheed family has been a strong supporter of the Stavians for almost 100 years. They have a long family tradition of arcane magic, adding to their wealth and prestige. Martella is the black sheep of her family, being a result of an extramarital dalliance with a Qadiran diplomat. She lacks her family’s gift for magic as well, adding to their resentment. Despite her family’s disdain, Martella still commands some wealth and has extensive contacts, having attended the Sinora Academia, Taldor’s most exclusive girls’ school.

You also know Princess Eutropia is the adult daughter of Grand Prince Stavian III and has a scandalous reputation for making trouble and fighting in the streets. Eutropia is a social reformer, eager to establish schools and other public resources for the poor, and remove political or family restrictions for women and various minorities. Rumors have circulated for a decade that her ultimate goal is to overturn primogeniture, Taldor’s ancient law, stating that only male heirs may inherit the Lion Throne and become the first empress of Taldor. The princess’s reputation for “fighting in the streets” largely hails from her skill as a fencer, a sport she excelled at during her schooling at the Sinora Academia. Many times in her twenties she matched blades with chauvinistic politicians who would otherwise refuse to let her speak or act within political circles, and those early public duels helped her win unexpected support for her later social reforms as well as a reputation as an impolite, unladylike brute.

Sveng was the first to arrive and enter the building an hour before the pre-appointed time. As it approached 7:30 the proprietor started cleaning up and asking guests to leave for a private meeting that was to occur at 8:00. Surprisingly she didn't bother Sveng. Shortly after a woman enters the establishment as most of the other guests are starting to leave. She has flowing brown hair and tanned skin. She wears a short, but lavish, white dress with tanned leather pants underneath. Over the dress is a leather vest of deep purple. A long, vibrant yellow veil covers her head.

Seeing Sveng she smiles and motions for him to join her in a back room. "Mr. Catus, yes? Please join me as we wait for some others." She is polite and partakes in any small talk while you wait, but any direct questions about the meeting she asks that you wait until everyone else is gathered for the sake of expediency.

Piri is the next to show up early and not long after the others begin to arrive. When Valeria arrives and rushes over to give her a kiss she smiles and waves her hand dismissively "No thanks are necessary, I am glad I was able to help. Hopefully with what I have to say tonight, I can be of even further assistance."

As you filter in you see the establishment to be empty except for Lady Lotheed and a few quests already with here, and a young woman behind the counter, who you surmise is the proprietor of the establishment. Long, golden beams of the setting sun dance through the cafe’s smoky interior, highlighting breads, cheeses, and wine bottles behind the only counter. Martella sips casually from a steaming mug. A hand-sized brass cricket buzzes quietly on the tabletop beside her.

As you enter she greets you individually. Even though you may have never met her, she seems to know you. She offers you each a seat "I’m so pleased you could join me this evening,” she begins. “Please order whatever you like on me; the fig jam is particularly lovely here. And feel free to speak candidly. I’ve taken measures to ensure our privacy.”

With everyone gathered Lady Lotheed sets her mug down and stands to do a slight curtsy to you all "I am Martella Lotheed. Many of you may not know me, but I've all asked you here tonight to be of assistance, but more than that to help Taldor as a whole. Before we get too deep into things, please introduce yourselves so that we can all become the greatest of friends."


Male Alias: "Sir Kalegos Seldry" | Human Vigilante (avenger) 4 | HP 31/31 | AC 25 | T 14 | FF 21 | CMD 19 | Fort +4 | Ref +6 | Will +6 | Init +2 | Perception +8; low-light vision

Qadirans planning to kidnap Princess Eutropia? I doubt they would be so bold as to do so - it would surely invite war, Eregos thinks as he enters the cafe. Looking about and spotting a woman who must be Lady Lotheed, he approaches and takes a chair, saying, "Thank you for the invitation. I'm looking forward to our discussion." His eyes flicker to the others that are here, wondering at their purpose. At her invitation, he orders a charcuterie board and sampling of wines from Taldor's eastern provinces. His attitude and knowledge seem to reflect a noble background, but his appearance suggests that he lives a rougher life than that.

At her invitation, he stands and offers a short bow and says, "My name is Eregos Villarius. It is a pleasure to meet each of you." He then resumes his seat, politely smiling at each of the other guests as they introduce themselves.


Male Human Cleric 4 | HP 23/23 | AC 15 | T 11 | FF 14 | CMD 12 | Fort +5 | Ref +3 | Will +9* | Init +2 | Perc +12
*:
-1 vs compulsion (see drawback)

As the business is semi-closed Sveng raises a brow. Ensuring privacy? A good sign. Still in a public place though, which deters violence. As Lady Lotheed enters at 7:30 he gives a minuscule nod of approval. Early enough to control the scene but not so early to seem paranoid. Of course, what does that say about me? His lip curls up in a faint smile.

After being addressed Sveng nods, closing his book and standing to greet Martella Lotheed. "Lady Lotheed, it is a pleasure." He gives a short, respectful bow. "Indeed. I look forward to our conversation." Sveng joins her in the back room, quickly picking up on the small talk and passing the time with inconsequential niceties and polite etiquette. He glances at the massive cricket. A familiar, but she lacks the arcane prestige of her family. Is this a facade perhaps? Or a formality? He tucks away the question for another time; there are more pressing matters at hand. Sveng is content with his coffee but does take her advice to order the fig jam. He would have considered her mention of privacy suspect if he had not spent the last half-day casing the building and knew it to be true.

Sveng's eyes flick over each person as they enter. A diverse group, to be sure. From all walks of life, some he is aware of and others not. A ragtag group if ever he saw one.

Of course he just recently had to hide for weeks to avoid arrest for low-level crimes, so he is hardly one to talk.

At Lady Lotheed's request for introductions Sveng nods politely. "Sveng Catus. A pleasure." He is dressed well, with a tall and slim build and sharply tied back hair framing his sharp facial features. His eyes are piercing as they flick about the room.


CG Female Human Bard 4 | Speed 30 ft. | AC 17, T 12, FF 16 | hp 27/27 | Fort +3, Ref +6, Will +6 | Init +11 | Percep +7 | CMD 16 | Spells 1st 5/5 2nd 2/2 Bardic Performance 15/15 | Reroll @ +3 1/1 | Conditions: none Wand CLW x89

Valeria smiles and pushing back the gift towards Lady Lotheed once more, she says, "Taldor as a whole?! oh my! But first thing first: don't be so humble, Martella! here, take it! You wouldn't believe how busy the stores were today. I'm not bringing it back!"

She stands and waives and the waitress behind the counter, and walking halfway there, asks with a clear voice, "Oh, hi! would you mind bringing us all some wine and sweet tea? piping hot that it, the tea. Thanks! and could you also bring us an assortment of cheeses and fruits? and anything else that shares easily for a gathered group. That would be... sooooo... appreciated! I'm staaaarving! Thanks!"

Walking back to the table, she proceeds to shake everyone's hands. "Hello! hi! pleased to meet you! I'm Valeria, but you can call me Val. I understand we're to be friends, and friends are on a first name basis! and friends know what their friends like to drink! Eregos, Catus: what would you like to drink? besides tea and wine?"


Tiefling (Pitborn) Brawler 3 | HP 7/29 | AC 14 T 11 FF 13 | CMB +7 CMD 18 | Fort +5 Ref +4 Will +1 | Init +6 | Perc +8 | Martial Flexibility 2/4

Hazel approaches the table and chooses a chair at one end. As she sits, she pointedly removes her hat, revealing the deep red horns that protrude from her forehead and curl back over her short black hair. Her red eyes flicker to each person around the table, watching for any signs of disapproval, and appraising each of them in turn.

"Major Hazel Fothergilla," she says, leaning forward with one forearm on the table. "You can call me Major Fothergilla for now."

Turning to the waitress, she orders a sandwich and cup of black coffee; when the coffee arrives, she produces a flask from her pocket, unscrews the lid, and tips a healthy amount of what appears to be whiskey into the mug. Then, she holds the flask out, offering to share it with the others. "No better way to get to know someone then sharing a drink with 'em. Or fighting with 'em, but I'm trying to keep that s%@! in check."


CG Female Human Bard 4 | Speed 30 ft. | AC 17, T 12, FF 16 | hp 27/27 | Fort +3, Ref +6, Will +6 | Init +11 | Percep +7 | CMD 16 | Spells 1st 5/5 2nd 2/2 Bardic Performance 15/15 | Reroll @ +3 1/1 | Conditions: none Wand CLW x89

Val reaches for the whiskey, and takes a swig. "Oh my! that... warms up the insides!" Coughing twice, she hands back the whiskey, and says, with genuine interest, Thanks for sharing, Major. Which deployment did you just get recalled from?"

Valeria inspects the major's uniform to determine which country, service, and unit she belongs to. Her eyes do not miss a thing.

Knowledge Nobility: 1d20 + 9 ⇒ (19) + 9 = 28

Valeria attempts to conceal the hint of sadness she feels for the major, having been deeply familiar with the bad treatment the tiefling community of Kintargo has continuously suffered from throughout the last decades since Thrune took power.

Bluff: 1d20 + 4 ⇒ (18) + 4 = 22


Tiefling (Pitborn) Brawler 3 | HP 7/29 | AC 14 T 11 FF 13 | CMB +7 CMD 18 | Fort +5 Ref +4 Will +1 | Init +6 | Perc +8 | Martial Flexibility 2/4

Valeria:

Fothergilla wears a worn, but well-kept, uniform belonging to the Taldan Phalanx, the footsoldiers that constitute the bulk of Taldor's army. The insignia on her uniform clearly marks her rank as a Major.

Hazel smiles when Valeria accepts her offer, revealing inhumanly sharp teeth, and chuckles amicably when the girl coughs.

"I'm retired! Put away my sword a few years ago and shacked up with a barmaid and everything. I only defend Taldor from drunks and freeloaders nowadays," she explains.

Sense Motive: 1d20 + 4 ⇒ (19) + 4 = 23

Her eyes narrow a bit as she looks at Valeria, and her smile wavers. "Hey now, let's make one thing clear: I don't want your pity." Her tone is stern, but not especially harsh. She points to everyone seated around the table, addressing them one-by-one, as she continues. "That goes for all of you. I'm here 'cause I want to change things, same as you, and because I can throw a hell of a punch, prob'ly better than any of you."


CG Female Human Bard 4 | Speed 30 ft. | AC 17, T 12, FF 16 | hp 27/27 | Fort +3, Ref +6, Will +6 | Init +11 | Percep +7 | CMD 16 | Spells 1st 5/5 2nd 2/2 Bardic Performance 15/15 | Reroll @ +3 1/1 | Conditions: none Wand CLW x89

Valeria blushes to a deep red, in shame.

"My apologies Major... I forget that the people of Taldor are more civilized than my own kin in regards to mixed heritage. It also appears that one's service in the military is more respected, even perhaps honored here. In Cheliax, the moment soldiers retire, they must turn in everything, and we even have towns where soldiers go retire in shame, utterly penniless... no wonder the Glorious Reclamation has made inroads into Longacre! The worst thing one can do is dishonor those that have given their life, literally or not, to the defense of their nation. Especially when some of this loss of life is perpetrated by nobility excess and war profiteering!"

Valeria is still red, but now in anger... as if a sensitive nerve from her past has just been exposed.


Tiefling (Pitborn) Brawler 3 | HP 7/29 | AC 14 T 11 FF 13 | CMB +7 CMD 18 | Fort +5 Ref +4 Will +1 | Init +6 | Perc +8 | Martial Flexibility 2/4

Fothergilla nods, accepting the apology. She listens attentively to Valeria's impromptu speech, and a seed of respect begins to take root in her chest as the girl reveals her passion.

"Well said, girlie!" She claps a hand on the table, punctuating her words. "I'm not sure Taldor is much better in that regard, though. I deal with plenty of b~%*%#$$ every day, and I'm far from the only one; just about anyone who isn't a human nobleman is f@++ed!"

She shakes her head, clenching and unclenching her fist. "Something needs to change, and soon, or I'm afraid we'll go the same way as your birth country."


Aasimir Investigator (Empiricist)4 AC 119|T14|FF16|HP35 Init+3|Perc+11|Fort 3|Ref 7(+1)|Will 4(+2)|Darkvision 60|DR Acid, cold, elec.|

Piri was surprised to find that Lady Lotheed and the slim man with dark hair pulled back to reveal his features. Must be one of her security team He scans the room before sitting down in a corner as best as possible. "A pleasure to meet you Lady Lotheed. Though I am curious of many things you apparently wish to discuss with others as well. I look forward to learn how we can help each other," he says sincerely, while taking in all the details of the room. He sits and thanks Lady Lotheed for her hospitality.

After everyone's arrival, he rises to introduce himself. He speaks in a clear voice but just as his appearance it simply blends in with the background, one wouldn't give him a second look. "I am Piri Erudishen. Once a family name here. I look forward to hearing everyone's story."

Piri muses I can pretty much predict everyone's story here. Not sure of Lotheed's interest, but I will wait and see where this goes. If I can stun the world with the Erudishen name, it will please me to avenge the wrong of the cursed back-stabbing politicians. Noticing the cricket as not consistent with the rest of the room,Hmm., I wonder what that is. Must be something to do with the steps to insure privacy.

Turning to the waitress he says clearly, but softly I will share the meats of the charcuterie ordered by Eregos and enjoy the fruits and cheeses as the lady Val has generously ordered.

He returns to his seat, quietly and seemingly to not be paying attention yet observing everything without missing a detail.


Male Human Cleric 4 | HP 23/23 | AC 15 | T 11 | FF 14 | CMD 12 | Fort +5 | Ref +3 | Will +9* | Init +2 | Perc +12
*:
-1 vs compulsion (see drawback)

Sveng's eyes start on Valeria. An excitable type. But not frivolous. Pretty, charming, but also sharp. Long-winded and prone to dominating a room. An excellent charismatic type to have at our disposal. I wonder if she has other skills? He inclines his head politely. "That's very generous of you. I've always had a fondness for dry reds, I find them complex and endlessly diverse." He says with a soft smile.

Next he observes Major Hazel Fothergilla. Quite the opposite of Valeria. Does not hide her ancestry, but is smart enough to conceal it to avoid undue attention during necessary times. Direct, confrontational, dare I say a brute, but certainly not stupid. Not to mention good with her hands, which is the easiest weapon to smuggle. Certainly a valuable asset. "Major Fothergilla, thank you for your service." He takes the offered flask with a wry smile, pouring a more modest amount into his half-empty cup of coffee. With a sip he tilts his head curiously. "Mhmm, you have good taste. Especially in history I see. Cheliax is in a dark time indeed."

He looks to Eregos Villarius. Quiet, holding his cards obscured for now. But his appearance betrays him. A background of money and stature, but torn and disheveled. A noble fallen on hard times, like many in the city. But why the fall, I wonder? And what are you hoping to accomplish in retaliation? Justice, vengeance, progress? "Eregos, a pleasure." The man revealed little, and would likely not be interested in prodding. To this Sveng respects his privacy. Even not making a move is making a move sometimes.

His gaze comes to Piri Erudishen. Somewhat early as well, somebody that values planning and structure. Observant, very observant. Shows enough class to be educated, but not more, showing he is an intellectual who would rather focus his mental prowess elsewhere. Another noble background, but one that has gone out of the spotlight as opposed to fallen. And he is definitely interested in bringing it back. Intellectual and driven, a very potent and useful combination. "Piri, your family name is familiar to me. I look forward to seeing what you accomplish under it." He says with an approving nod.


Aasimir Investigator (Empiricist)4 AC 119|T14|FF16|HP35 Init+3|Perc+11|Fort 3|Ref 7(+1)|Will 4(+2)|Darkvision 60|DR Acid, cold, elec.|

Based on this gathering Lady Lotheed has enabled, it seems we are balanced in a way that may prove to allow multiple solutions to circumstances. I wonder what she could have in mind...and how to motivate us? It doesn't seem anyone here is the type to see gold as a reward solely. Hazel, perhaps would be the only pure mercenary, and yet her motivation is probably the most blatant, and certainly not money. At whatever motivation, none seem to be favoring the underhanded politicians nor the way of the political status quo as the corruption becomes more obvious with each passing year.

Is this a group a should quite literally tie my name to?

Piri returns Sveng's nod with a subtle smile and focuses his attention on the cricket and those in the room that will not be speaking, the staff.


HR | MM | RotRL1 | RotRL2 | SD | SS1 | SS2 | WftC_1 | WftC_2 |

Just to keep things moving, Sydney feel free to add in your introduction, I'll assume you to have made it before this post.

Martella smiles as she listens to the various introductions, her smile only grows wider as Valeria insists on her taking the gift "Thank you Val." Setting the gift aside, feeling it's not proper to open it in front of everyone else, she starts "Well now that we can all call ourselves friends, as I mentioned in my letter, there is a potential for great change in Taldor. Change that I feel will benefit not only each of you, but the entire empire. However, I prefer to remove as much of Desna's influence from the equation and work toward ensuring that change can arrive."

She looks you each in the eye gauging your interest before continuing "As luck would have it, I've obtained a means of access to the Exaltation Gala. As you may know, this is the social event of the year. However, more importantly, the senate will be voting on the future of primogeniture. I have some tasks that I am hoping you all will be able to assist me with to ensure that vote comes to the proper conclusion."

From a pouch at her waist she pulls out some badges, those of you familiar with the senate at all note they are senatorial aid badges. "Assuming you are interested in serving as my agents during the Gala you will each receive one of these badges. They will grant you entry to the event. Of course, I trust your activities won’t occupy your entire evening, so by all means, enjoy the party and make friends. This is an excellent opportunity for you to begin your own political ambitions or find support for the causes you hold dear."

Setting the badges down she takes a sip from her mug before she continues "As I'm sure the very next questions will be "What are these tasks?" Let me lay them out for you."

Taking some time she describes the various things she would like assistance with.

The Tasks:

NOTE - The below details the most likely skills involved to be successful at a task. This doesn't mean you can't try something else if it makes sense.

Aide: Martella legitimately needs a senatorial aide as both a cover for her other false aides and to run communications between allied politicians. This is by far the easiest job available, but also the most time-consuming, requiring you to run messages between various politicians. Navigating the crowded senate floor to deliver messages quickly requires a successful Escape Artist or combat maneuver check.

Discovery: Martella is confident Eutropia has gathered the votes necessary for her cause, but she hates loose ends. She tasks you with uncovering the true dedication of two senators: Duke
Centimus and Countess Abrielle Pace. It is unknown if either supports Eutropia’s bid to end primogeniture, and while their votes will be apparent after the senate convenes, Martella wants you to discover their positions in advance, as well as the reasons each noble holds that position. Divining each noble’s motivations requires a successful Sense Motive or Perception check after at least one member of the party has put the noble at ease with one or more successful Influence checks.

Fraud: Martella needs to discredit a few prominent senators backing primogeniture - not necessarily to sway their votes, but to undercut their influence after the vote. You must create a scandal surrounding one of the major opponents to the repeal of primogeniture. Doing so requires first identifying an opponent, either with a successful Sense Motive check or by coordinating with another agent, and then by spreading rumors with
a successful Bluff check and manufacturing or co opting damning evidence on the fly with a successful Linguistics check.

Politicking: The orchestrations of Eutropia, Glorianna Morilla, and Martella Lotheed have swayed a great number of reluctant senators, and Lady Lotheed requires a vast web of influence to maintain that. To that end, she would like you to make a strong impression on Baron Nicolaus Okerra and remind him of certain debts he owes her. While Baron Nicolaus Okerra isn’t a senator, his war record and general popularity make him an influential figure — one whose reputation helped sway a number of otherwise neutral votes. You can accomplish this task by successfully influencing the baron, or by succeeding at two Intimidate checks to browbeat him.

Sabotage: Some senators are too powerful or stubborn for you to influence their votes, but that doesn’t mean they’re beyond some petty revenge. Martella would like to exact some retribution against her more powerful half-brother, who has contributed a large bottle of rare, 150-year-old red wine from family holdings in the Opparos province, now held in the senate’s kitchens. Martella will provide a single syringe filled with a putrefying agent to render the wine embarrassingly undrinkable but warns you not to steal the bottle and to conceal any signs of tampering; it must be drunk at dinner and appear to be of terrible quality or — even more scandalously — a forgery. Of course, she notes, that no one would actually get hurt by this, just her half-brothers reputation. Recognizing the correct bottle in the crowded kitchen requires a successful Appraise check or Knowledge (nobility) check, while injecting the putrefying agent without leaving any trace of tampering requires a successful Disable Device check.

Spy: Martella needs someone to keep tabs on political rivals and update her if they change their tactics, most notably High Strategos Maxillar Pythareus. You must stay close to the military commander, watching for unusual behavior or listening for snippets of conversation, and warn her if he takes any unusual
actions, all while remaining unobtrusive. Spying requires a total of three successful Perception or Sense Motive checks, but to approach close enough to attempt one of these checks while remaining unnoticed requires you to first succeed a Disguise or Stealth check.

Theft: To liberate stolen artifacts and further undermine the influence of the recently disgraced Earl Calhadion Vernisant, Martella would like to see some of the historical artifacts that the earl donated to the senate vanish from the Arcade
of Triumphs before it is unveiled prior to the evening’s vote. Martella indicates you will receive a finders fee for liberating the stolen item as they are returned to the museum from where it came. The artifacts aren’t secured; the senate assumes anyone sophisticated enough to attended this crowded gala would never dream of stealing anything on public display. Stealing any single curio from Martella’s list requires a successful Sleight of Hand skill check. Martella’s list mentions five items — a buckler, a dagger, a fan, a journal, and a spyglass. She notes that she needs only three of them to go missing to disgrace the earl, but if all of the items could be liberated the museum would be extremely grateful.

After she describes the various things she needs assistance with she finishes by saying. "Overall, tomorrow night promises to be a historic evening, but an evening of work nonetheless. And in the sort of work you’re embarking upon, the line that divides success and failure is drawn by the people you know. I’m counting on you to support one another to ensure success and discretion. If you need assistance, kindly ask for it. If your assistance is required, give it. And if I’m to be blunt, I would like just once in my adult life to simply enjoy a gala I attend, rather than scamper about with clandestine busywork. Of course, I'm not expecting you to just help me out of the kindness of your heart. Opportunities aside, I will compensate you each 150 gold lions if you complete your tasks, to be paid several days after the gala. If you all complete your work without need of me to clean anything up, I will happily double my promised fee."

She looks at you each expectantly and adds one last thing "Additionally, I will provide you each with enough gold to purchase a proper courtier's outfit so you fit in."

This would be 30 gold. If you like you can spend the extra 45 gold to purchase a proper nobles outfit.


Male Human Cleric 4 | HP 23/23 | AC 15 | T 11 | FF 14 | CMD 12 | Fort +5 | Ref +3 | Will +9* | Init +2 | Perc +12
*:
-1 vs compulsion (see drawback)

Friends already? I suppose friends are cheap, they come and go on a whim. Trusted friends, reliable acquaintances, now that is yet to be seen. Sveng remains quiet and attentive, showing his patient interest to hear the entirety of Lady Lotheed's intentions.

Ah, primogeniture. Of course. An young noblewoman with high aspirations in Taldor would have to target that first above all else. Also an excellent way to put yourself on the map with such a high-visibility issue. He arcs a brow at the senatorial aid badges. Well that will certainly do it. I will have to tailor my approach for personal connections while under that guise, but it should be a simple adjustment. He gives a small smile. And ample time and opportunity to pursue our own interests as well. My my Lady Lotheed, you do favor the carrot over the stick don't you? A good employer to have.

Sveng leans to the side, resting his chin in the crook of his thumb as Lady Lotheed lists out all of the tasks for the evening. At the political manipulations he simply nods. Straightforward, standard politicking. But at the clandestine acts he raises a brow. Oh. Oh ho. Well, Lady Lotheed, you are not above achieving your goals by illicit means. Of course, based on her understanding of my run in with the law and not being subsequently turned in, it should have been obvious she's willing to act under the law. His eyes flick across the room. With those on the table, I should quickly learn the skill sets of my newfound 'friends'. I wonder what we have to work with. But overall, Sveng is very happy with the job. Very directed, pointed missions. Clear objectives. It also shows their employer is steadfast and knows what she wants. Of course there are some matters of concern to address.

Once Lady Lotheed concludes and opens the floor Sveng nods gratefully. "Very generous of you, Lady Lotheed. If I may suggest, I have an excellent tailor in the Grandbridge district who can make sure each one of us is properly attired for the event." He offers to the others.

He sits forward, addressing Lady Lotheed directly. "I do have two questions before embarking on these tasks. You mention the potential of having to clean things up, what does that mean if one of us is caught red-handed in one of the more illicit tasks? Will we be cut off and left to fend for ourselves, or will our mutual support continue?"

"The other question..." He pauses and locks gazes with her. "This does not seem like a 'one and done' kind of job. If I may be forward, you speak of great aspirations and monumental change. If you were only interested in some hired assistance for one evening, I think you would not use such grandiose verbiage. Am I correct in assuming that this has...long term opportunities? And not just in employment, but as political allies?" He searches her face and posture for any move that betrays her intentions.

Sense Motive: 1d20 + 8 ⇒ (6) + 8 = 14


Male Alias: "Sir Kalegos Seldry" | Human Vigilante (avenger) 4 | HP 31/31 | AC 25 | T 14 | FF 21 | CMD 19 | Fort +4 | Ref +6 | Will +6 | Init +2 | Perception +8; low-light vision

Eregos nods to the others as they introduce themselves, and he listens attentively as Lady Lotheed explains what it is she needs. So, Lady Lotheed acts on behalf of Princess Eutropia's cause to overturn primogeniture. Friends from their time at the Sinora Academy, perhaps? Both attended, and are close enough of an age they could be close.

At the word she needs someone to keep an eye on political rivals, especially Maxillar Pythareus, Eregos realizes this could be quite the opportunity. Out loud, he says, "Your offer is most generous, Lady Lotheed, and I am inclined to accept. However, I imagine that, in order for...some of us...to be capable of completing these tasks, being recognized could make things difficult. Would you object to some of us perhaps appearing as someone we are not, under a different name?"


LN Human Pact Wizard 4 HP: 25/25 AC: 10 Tch: 10 FF: 10 CMD: 12 | F +3 R +2 W +7 | Init: +1 Perc: +6 | Active: none

Apologies, all - I was travelling this week, and am only now getting settled back in.

A young, bald man with just the hint of a beard, already dressing in tailored clothing of a noble, offers a handshake to anyone who will take it. "Sydney Streegrenet, damn glad to meet you." A small jet black bird flies in behind him and settles on a open rafter nearby.

He bows to the ladies. "Lady Lotheed, I am a fan indeed. One day, I do hope to have a chance to be a part of the senate, and rest assured if I were so today, you could count me as a vote for primogeniture. It is high time for Taldor to grow with the times, and I have known many a strong and capable woman that would excel in participatingin our government."

Upon hearing the tasks laid out before them, he licks his lips in eager anticipation of getting a chance to hobnob with nobility and current members of the government.


Aasimir Investigator (Empiricist)4 AC 119|T14|FF16|HP35 Init+3|Perc+11|Fort 3|Ref 7(+1)|Will 4(+2)|Darkvision 60|DR Acid, cold, elec.|

When it appears from the faces of those in attendance that this group is to become a team at least for the purposes of a number of objectives for the evening, Piri speaks, again softly and clearly. "It is a most generous offer and I am interested in the answers the Sveng's questions. I can easily see my expertise might be adequate for the sabotage task, but it is risky and I cannot jeopardize my future aspirations for a mistake so public. I could lend my skills in perception, my eye for detail if any of the others need the assistance with their task"


CG Female Human Bard 4 | Speed 30 ft. | AC 17, T 12, FF 16 | hp 27/27 | Fort +3, Ref +6, Will +6 | Init +11 | Percep +7 | CMD 16 | Spells 1st 5/5 2nd 2/2 Bardic Performance 15/15 | Reroll @ +3 1/1 | Conditions: none Wand CLW x89

"Sveng, you must introduce me to this Grandbridge tailor first thing tomorrow, at, let's say... well... perhaps shortly after 2 bells in the afternoon? what say you? oh, and EVERYONE! what are you doing tonight? if some of you plan to take the pulse of this city, I would be much honored to count you all as my escort and protectors! there are MANY establishments, theaters and musical performances to attend!"


HR | MM | RotRL1 | RotRL2 | SD | SS1 | SS2 | WftC_1 | WftC_2 |

Martella quirks a brow somewhat in surprise, but also in admiration at Sveng's thoughtful questions "Well, when I was referencing having to clean things up, that was more in regards to you getting caught or thrown out and having to smooth things over or get you back into the Gala. However, I will say tonight is not the night for open hostilities and unless something happens where you need to defend yourselves, I would expect you to hold to that. Obviously, you also shouldn't run about telling the world you are working for me, that kind of defeats the purpose." Smiling she continues "Otherwise, yes our mutual support will most definitely continue."

"As to long term opportunities," she waves her hand dismissively and notes "we are now, already best friends. So I should hope we can continue that friendship into the future as we each mutually benefit. Of course, assuming all goes well, I would seek to obtain your assistance again in the future."

When Eregos speaks up she shakes her head "No, I have no objections. Do what you feel is best to get the tasks at hand completed. If a disguise is necessary, then by all means use one."

Thinking a moment she shrugs and then looks to each of you "I believe I've related all the important information to you that I have. Do you have any other questions? If not, I propose you meet back here tomorrow before the Gala. I will provide some loaner jewelry if any of you would like to use it. We likely won't meet again until you find your way into the Gala."


Aasimir Investigator (Empiricist)4 AC 119|T14|FF16|HP35 Init+3|Perc+11|Fort 3|Ref 7(+1)|Will 4(+2)|Darkvision 60|DR Acid, cold, elec.|

I shall need no jewelry, nor do I think the services of your tailor will be necessary, glancing at Sveng. Unlike our compatriot, I think a disguise for me would only unnecessarily create another point of failure. My family is welcomed at most events, though I doubt anyone would make note of it. As for me personally...well let's just say my family would be welcomed, I am still somewhat a conundrum to most observers.

Turning to Val, Thanks so much for your invitation but that would be rather out of character for me and might bring unwanted attention. I've always remained out of most people's minds and I would rather like to keep it that way.


LN Human Pact Wizard 4 HP: 25/25 AC: 10 Tch: 10 FF: 10 CMD: 12 | F +3 R +2 W +7 | Init: +1 Perc: +6 | Active: none

"Perhaps then, Piri, you would prefer a quiet eve sipping brandy and perhaps a game or two of stones?"


Aasimir Investigator (Empiricist)4 AC 119|T14|FF16|HP35 Init+3|Perc+11|Fort 3|Ref 7(+1)|Will 4(+2)|Darkvision 60|DR Acid, cold, elec.|

Piri raises an eyebrow of curiosity at the invitation, "Not to be unsociable to the rest of the group, but I would be happy to accept your invitation. I'm afraid I may not give you a contest at stones but as with everything, I will enjoy the education."


Tiefling (Pitborn) Brawler 3 | HP 7/29 | AC 14 T 11 FF 13 | CMB +7 CMD 18 | Fort +5 Ref +4 Will +1 | Init +6 | Perc +8 | Martial Flexibility 2/4

"Well, I'll take you up, Val," Fothergilla says, turning to the girl. "I'm off tonight!"


Male Alias: "Sir Kalegos Seldry" | Human Vigilante (avenger) 4 | HP 31/31 | AC 25 | T 14 | FF 21 | CMD 19 | Fort +4 | Ref +6 | Will +6 | Init +2 | Perception +8; low-light vision

Eregos nods in response to Lady Lotheed’s answer. Good. That will give me the chance to get close to Pythareus.

”Excellent. That will be quite beneficial. Val, I shall join you this evening, although in the guise I intend to use tomorrow. It will get you used to my appearance.”


CG Female Human Bard 4 | Speed 30 ft. | AC 17, T 12, FF 16 | hp 27/27 | Fort +3, Ref +6, Will +6 | Init +11 | Percep +7 | CMD 16 | Spells 1st 5/5 2nd 2/2 Bardic Performance 15/15 | Reroll @ +3 1/1 | Conditions: none Wand CLW x89

"Splendid! I shall feel... very protected with you two around!" says Valeria, positioning herself between the two and clasping them with both of her arms.
"How about we start around Senate Hill and Imperial Square? if it's... a little slow - although I doubt it due to the festivities - we can always move downhill to Westport and have a jolly good time there? although for that part I'd change out of that stuffy uniform Major! and... since we're all off-duty here, must I really call you 'Major' the whole night? this will draw some unwanted attention I'm sure... must we be so... formal?" says Valeria, smiling at Hazel. Turning to Eregos, she says, "And how shall I call you tonight? will you require help with your disguise? I know my way around needle and thread, and I'd be happy, nay, delighted, to assist!"


HR | MM | RotRL1 | RotRL2 | SD | SS1 | SS2 | WftC_1 | WftC_2 |

Seeing you all conversing and that no one had any particular questions Martella interjects "Before you depart I did want to say, I know some of you looked into me before our little meetup. I applaud your initiative and resourcefulness. As such, I have a little gift that may be of use in your goals."

She waves the owner over. The young woman brings a pouch stuffed with some various items. Inside are two vials of liquid blade, eight smoke pellets, a single dose of soul stimulant, and two vials of dust of illusion.

After receiving your gift Martella stands and does a slight curtsy "I hope you enjoy your evenings and I look forward to seeing you all again tomorrow at the Gala! Please spend the day tomorrow preparing as you see fit." Unless otherwise stopped she picks up her brass cricket, putting it securely in one of her pockets, then grabs Vals gift before heading out of the cafe leaving you to enjoy your food and drink.

Feel free to continue RPing and let me know once you are ready to move on to tomorrow night. If you are doing anything specific tomorrow during the day; shopping, researching targets, etc let me know.


Male Alias: "Sir Kalegos Seldry" | Human Vigilante (avenger) 4 | HP 31/31 | AC 25 | T 14 | FF 21 | CMD 19 | Fort +4 | Ref +6 | Will +6 | Init +2 | Perception +8; low-light vision

Eregos smiles at Val's offer and says, "Thank you, but the assistance is not needed. The look, name, and identity have all been established. I shall need but a moment."

As Lady Lotheed takes her leave, Eregos stands and offers her a short bow, then excuses himself. He moves into the establishment's water closet.


Male Human Vigilante (avenger) 4 | HP 31/31 | AC 25 | T 14 | FF 21 | CMD 19 | Fort +4 | Ref +6 | Will +6 | Init +2 | Perception +8; low-light vision

A moment later, a man emerges. He has similar coloration to Eregos, but his bearing is different. His walk has changed - Taldan, but from one of the more northern provinces. His attitude is different as well, less that of a noble who has fallen on hard times, more that of one who has not been long in Oppara. Offering Valerie a short bow, he says, "Hargus Kryn. It would be my pleasure to provide you escort this evening." Even his voice has changed, deeper yet almost more rustic. It seems almost natural.

Disguise, Seamless Guise: 1d20 + 26 ⇒ (16) + 26 = 42


Tiefling (Pitborn) Brawler 3 | HP 7/29 | AC 14 T 11 FF 13 | CMB +7 CMD 18 | Fort +5 Ref +4 Will +1 | Init +6 | Perc +8 | Martial Flexibility 2/4

Hazel rises when Martella does, and reaches out to bid the woman goodbye with a firm handshake.

"Hmph," she grunts, sitting back down. "Seein' as we're friends now, you can call me Hazel. I'm just fine in this, though," she says, and shrugs out of her jacket, leaving her in just a loose, long-sleeved shirt and trousers. Under the collar, the edge of a tattoo is just visible.


CG Female Human Bard 4 | Speed 30 ft. | AC 17, T 12, FF 16 | hp 27/27 | Fort +3, Ref +6, Will +6 | Init +11 | Percep +7 | CMD 16 | Spells 1st 5/5 2nd 2/2 Bardic Performance 15/15 | Reroll @ +3 1/1 | Conditions: none Wand CLW x89

"Hazel, what a beautiful name, and it's nice to finally see you as you are, out of that shell of a uniform," says Valeria, taking Hazel's hand. "Are you sure you don't want to come to my place and try a few dresses on? I'd like to take your measurements and make you something nice for tomorrow. Eregos has no need of my help it seems..." She casts a sidelong glance at Eregos/Hargus, appearing impressed at the disguise, and then, cast a hopeful glance at Hazel, hoping she'll spend a bit of extra time alone with her.


Aasimir Investigator (Empiricist)4 AC 119|T14|FF16|HP35 Init+3|Perc+11|Fort 3|Ref 7(+1)|Will 4(+2)|Darkvision 60|DR Acid, cold, elec.|

Piri rises as Lady Lotheed leaves, notes her picking up the cricket which confirms in his mind it was some sort of device to help "insure security". He thinks to himself as he observes the goings on with the remaining guests, That one is certain to attract attention wherever she goes. Attractive and gregarious, in the right circles a good one to have on our side.

"A truly amazing disguise Mr. Kryn. Had I not seen you go in as Eregos I would be none the wiser."


LN Human Pact Wizard 4 HP: 25/25 AC: 10 Tch: 10 FF: 10 CMD: 12 | F +3 R +2 W +7 | Init: +1 Perc: +6 | Active: none

"Indeed. Why, it scares me a little how easy you made that look. I am glad you are on my side."


CG Female Human Bard 4 | Speed 30 ft. | AC 17, T 12, FF 16 | hp 27/27 | Fort +3, Ref +6, Will +6 | Init +11 | Percep +7 | CMD 16 | Spells 1st 5/5 2nd 2/2 Bardic Performance 15/15 | Reroll @ +3 1/1 | Conditions: none Wand CLW x89

After an amazing night out with Eregos and Hazel, Valeria spends the next day at the tailor with Sveng - and hopefully also Hazel! - in preparation for her courtier's dress. Extensive measurements are taken so that the dress hugs her studded armor perfectly. Her handbag's exterior side is cleverly reinforced with a buckler.

Craft Clothing: 1d20 + 7 ⇒ (18) + 7 = 25

The final results are to her satisfaction.


Tiefling (Pitborn) Brawler 3 | HP 7/29 | AC 14 T 11 FF 13 | CMB +7 CMD 18 | Fort +5 Ref +4 Will +1 | Init +6 | Perc +8 | Martial Flexibility 2/4

Hazel smirks, apparently amused by the suggestion. "You're not about to get me in a dress, but I'll visit that fancy tailor of Sveng's with you tomorrow."

---

A woman of her word, Fothergilla meets Valeria at the tailor's the next day, where she continues to refuse to try on any dresses; "They're about as comfortable as Nine Hells, and they get in the way if I have to fight someone!"

She does properly attire herself for the gala, though, with silky black trousers, a red cravat, and a long jacket of dark red velvet. She completes the outfit with black knee-high boots, a wide belt to hang her sword from, and a scrap of red fabric to tie around her hat.

Taking up Martella on the courtier's outfit; something like this, but in red.


Male Alias: "Sir Kalegos Seldry" | Human Vigilante (avenger) 4 | HP 31/31 | AC 25 | T 14 | FF 21 | CMD 19 | Fort +4 | Ref +6 | Will +6 | Init +2 | Perception +8; low-light vision

Eregos woke early, with the dawn (say, 6 am) and spent the morning attempting to learn about some of their targets.

Diplomacy, Gather Info Duke Centimus: 1d20 + 10 ⇒ (4) + 10 = 14
Time: 1d4 ⇒ 4 hours 10 am

Diplomacy, Gather Info Countess Pace: 1d20 + 10 ⇒ (11) + 10 = 21
Time: 1d4 ⇒ 1 hours 11 am

Diplomacy, Gather Info Baron Nicolaus Okerra: 1d20 + 10 ⇒ (2) + 10 = 12
Time: 1d4 ⇒ 2 hours 1 pm

With much of the day gone, Eregos realized he needed to meet the others at Sveng's tailor...


Male Human Vigilante (avenger) 4 | HP 31/31 | AC 25 | T 14 | FF 21 | CMD 19 | Fort +4 | Ref +6 | Will +6 | Init +2 | Perception +8; low-light vision

...and Hargus Kryn arrived promptly at 2 pm. Though he was already dressed in proper attire for a noble of his stature, having a new outfit made especially for the Gala was the proper thing to do.

His boots went up to his mid-calf, with turned down tops worked lightly in silver. His black breeches were form-fitting below the knee before loosening up slightly above to ensure he would be able to move quickly if needed. The white silk shirt was loose and flowing to better hide his studded leather armor, and with a blue vest embroidered in silver before finally finishing it off with a long coat of the same blue, with silver embroidery along the shoulders and sleeves suggesting mountain peaks - to further support Hargus Kryn's story as being from near the World's Edge Mountains. The final touch was a black leather belt with a silver buckle from which he could hang his falcata. He would also be able to hang a dagger from his belt and hopefully tuck 2 more behind it, under the jacket.


Male Human Cleric 4 | HP 23/23 | AC 15 | T 11 | FF 14 | CMD 12 | Fort +5 | Ref +3 | Will +9* | Init +2 | Perc +12
*:
-1 vs compulsion (see drawback)

Sveng nods in appreciation. "Of course. A subtle touch is guaranteed with my service. Than if that is all..." He stands, bowing to Lady Lotheed. "Consider me at your disposal. I look forward to this fruitful opportunity. At your leave." Once dismissed he walks outside with the others.

At the clandestine tools Sveng arcs a brow. Oh ho HO. You are one of more flexible means, aren't you? But even this surprise is overcome by the digusie trick of one of his new friends. That...is unnerving. Even knowing the man I can't see through the disguise...this is not something done in haste. This man leads two lives. A single bead of sweat runs down his neck, which he casually dabs away.

"Although I realize not all of you are eager to take up time with the tailor, may I suggest we all meet there regardless? Even if you already have proper attire we will need to reconvene in order to plan out our approach for the gala. We will need to become familiar with each other's skills to best make use of them."

As the others disperse Sveng strolls down the street, deep in thought about the events that just transpired.

GM, what are our options for research, and how much time do they take? Also can we do any tonight as well as tomorrow?


Aasimir Investigator (Empiricist)4 AC 119|T14|FF16|HP35 Init+3|Perc+11|Fort 3|Ref 7(+1)|Will 4(+2)|Darkvision 60|DR Acid, cold, elec.|

Piri agrees that meeting at the tailor would be acceptable. Sveng, this tailor of yours, is he discreet? How does it look all of us arriving at the same time with similar requests? Or even arriving without patronizing, not that I would pass on a tailored outfit which could cover some of my normal gear.

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