Power and Progress: Dragoncat's Homebrew Alkenstar Campaign

Game Master Dragoncat

A campaign of exploration, cold wars and political intrigue, with Alkenstar caught in the middle.

Current Date: Fireday, 11th of Arodus, 4710 AR

Map of Alkenstar City

Maps!

Alkenstar Mansion, 1st Floor
Alkenstar Mansion, 2nd Floor

PRIMAL MAGIC RULES!


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GM Who Must Be Feared & Obeyed (Or At Least Bribed With Cookies)

Oathday, 10th of Arodus, 4710 AR

The day begins as most days do, in the Mana Wastes—with a glaring sun creeping up over the horizon, turning the skies a rich, crimson hue. A wild, easterly wind blows along the streets of the Clockwork City, carrying bits of debris, sand and smoke along its path. Most such detritus will be blown into the murky, cloying and mutagenic waters of the Ustradi River as it flows, unceasingly, onward to the Hellfallen Cliffs and cascading down. The rest will fly errantly about until they catch on one of Alkenstar’s smokestacks.

Alkenstar’s citizens begin to rise for the day, some with greater energy and enthusiasm than others. Mothers feed and dress their children for school; fathers, sisters and brothers go forth to face another day of exhausting labour in one of the city’s many factories. There, they will toil to produce works of mechanical engineering the likes of which the world beyond has never seen.

Some of these things could even be put to civilian use—things such as clocks that need no water to function, or small boxes that can produce the gentlest of melodies. Or perhaps even little toys crafted in the shapes of monsters that lurk in the Wastes, and the brave souls who fight them. But every citizen knows that Alkenstar’s true triumphs of manufacturing are its weapons of war. Pistols, muskets, cannons, even the mighty airships of the Aeromantic Fleet are all produced, piece by piece, within the ringing halls of Skyside’s factories or the soot-stained workroom floors of Smokeside.

But in these recent days, things have been different. A pall of worry has fallen upon the scribes of Smokeside, smothering their enthusiasm for their work as readily as Smokeside’s very nature smothers magic itself. Alkenstar’s newspaper, the Lone Star Gazette, has run an ominous headline today…

Lone Star Gazette wrote:

SMOKESIDE SCRIBE SLASHER STRIKES AGAIN!

AUTHORITIES CONTINUE TO FIND NO LEADS

Alorea:
Today appears to be shaping up to be a slow day. As of late, the most pressing case the Whispering Wind Detective Agency has taken on has been a mere investigation into whether some Skyside aristocrat’s husband has been cheating on his wife—hardly a challenge for someone of your intellectual acumen. As you sit in your office, pondering what else to do for the day, there’s a knock at your door.

*KNOCK KNOCK KNOCK KNOCK*

”Hello? Detective Alorea?”

It’s an anxious-sounding young man’s voice… is it perhaps a new client?

Daerokh:
”Hmm… this is terrible news indeed.” Bahadur Jayakhumar sets the newspaper down on the table before you and scratches his chin through his impressive salt-and-pepper beard. The aged Vudrani merchant then picks up his porcelain teapot and begins to pour himself a cup of tea, its slight woody scent drifting across to you. ”A scribe can earn himself great wealth back home. How can one have such disrespect for the written word and those who pen it?”

The taproom of Skyside’s Drifter’s Rest inn is quiet this morning—aside from a waiter, a couple of other patrons and the bartender, you and Bahadur are the only people here.

Faithe:
The newspaper doesn’t normally catch your eye more often than anything else does, but today the Lone Star Gazette’s headline drew your attention in a way it never did before. When you read the headline, you could swear you felt something stir in your memory… something about it seemed oddly familiar.

You set out to find Zariine’s home after seeing it—perhaps she would have some insight as to why it felt that way. It doesn’t take you long before you reach her home again: it’s situated on the northern end of Alkenstar’s Auburn District, two stories high and bearing an uncannily white façade with green shutters around its windows. A rather nondescript home for someone who claims to work for the city’s government.

You attract a few stares and wary glances as you approach her house. That’s hardly anything new.

Jase:
Today doesn’t appear to be shaping up to be a good day. Between the pounding headache and gnawing thirst you feel this morning, coupled with hazy memories of arguing with someone over how effective the Shieldmarshals are at policing Alkenstar, it’s a wonder you’ve even managed to roll out of bed. The details of your argument will undoubtedly return to you once you’ve had a chance to fully wake up and get something nourishing to drink.

As you reach your front door, you find today’s Lone Star Gazette pushed underneath your door. Its headline, all in capital letters and a bolded font, stares at you.

Joie:
You rise early, as a good soldier would. Early enough to perhaps appreciate the blood-red sunrise characteristic of the Mana Wastes. The rest of your unit rises at about the same time you do in preparation for morning drills and meals. The barracks attached to the Nexian embassy in the eastern neighborhoods of Skyside are about as utilitarian and drab as the ones back in Quantium: cold, beige stone walls with several bunks covered in plain brown blankets.

There are whispers going around in the mess hall when you come in from your morning drills—the newspaper has a headline about scribes being murdered. And more importantly, that the authorities have nothing to go on.

This may be of interest to your commanding officer…

Tuco:
Smokeside is no place for the timid, foolish or overly-reliant on magic. This lesson has been drilled into your head since the day you were born. When you first took up witchcraft, it was… an experience, having to adjust to Smokeside’s lack of magic. But you were born and raised here, under the smog-and-ash filled sky. You’ve learned well enough.

Today, one of your patients—a frequent visitor, Merrick Bullock—has visited you with several fresh cuts and what appears to be a gunshot wound to the left shoulder. The gun-smuggling business appears to have been treating him worse than the Oiled Musket has.

”Tailor! Been readin’ the news lately?” The wiry man says as he sits down. There’s a copy of the Lone Star Gazette in his hands—it looks to be today’s issue.


Female Half-Elf LN Strangler 2 | AC 15, T 12, FF 13 | 11/20 hp | Fort +5, Ref +5, Will +2;| Init +4 | Percep +6 | CMD 16

Joie wipes a bit of sweat from her brow as she returns, quickly falling in line for food. By the time she sits down, she has all but read the article herself-- whether her grasp of the situation is entirely accurate is, of course, in question, but she knows better than to fully put her faith in the secondhand-or-worse accounts from her squadmates.

She eats her fishy stew at a soldier's pace, and it isn't long before she's pushed away from the table and grabbed one of the newspapers for herself. She strides across the barracks as soon as she has some proper free time.

Knocking twice, hard, at her CO's door, she waits for a response before entering.


M Half-Orc Tatter / Mirror 2 - HP 16/16 - AC 15 - TAC 13 - FF 12 - CMD 14 - Init +3 - Fort +2 - Ref +3 - Will +4 - Perc +9 (+8 Smells) - Scent, Darkvision 60 - Omen 1/1 - ASF 5% - Communed - Kit 9/10

"Morn' to ya too Merrick." The half-orc stands up, nearly a head taller than the gun runner, "Haven't no time truth be told; I'm sure yous will tell me all about it when ya take a seat right 'er." He pulls out an an old barber's chair and starts salting up his hands. "Another night gone sour it seems, work or the missus?" With a laugh he digs in and tries to find the pellet lodged in him.

Tuco had learned a thing or two about people in his time. First he knew that when people come in cheery, you best keep them that way and second, that if you let people talk they will.

He catches a glint of something that isn't supposed to be, "Oh wow. That's deep." The Tailor moves over to the counter and opens up a bottle with his teeth, "Dun say I dun treat you good? You might be needin' some of dis." The smell of alcohol fills the air, and he hands it over to Merrick, "Drink up."


GM Who Must Be Feared & Obeyed (Or At Least Bribed With Cookies)

Joie

"Come in." The rough, contralto voice says from behind the door.

Lieutenant Maya Venard's office is slightly more decorated than the rank-and-file barracks, in both the civilian and military senses of the word. A painting of the marbled dome of the great Bandashar, the seat of Nex's government, hangs on one wall of her office and a pair of medals are propped up in display cases behind her. The lieutenant herself is dressed in a dark, olive drab officer's uniform, her dark brown hair held back in a tight military bun to match. Her sharp green eyes meet yours.

"PFC Patronne." She says in acknowledgement, folding her gloved hands on her desk.
---------------
Tuco

"Oh, it's never the missus. She can't shoot straight to save her life." Merrick chuckles as he settles into the barber's chair.

He winces as you find the bullet in his shoulder. "Ow!" He flinches before taking your offered bottle of alcohol and taking a swig.

"Anyway--word round the smokestack is that Smokeside's ol' wordsmiths are getting picked off, one by one." Merrick becomes chattier as you go about your work. "An' the funny thing is the Shields don't have a f!*$in' clue who's behind it all."

"There's even been talk they've been thinking of hiring outside help." He chuckles. "So, what, a bullet to the back of the f&%%in' skull and they'll be on it like bloodhounds, but as soon as someone pulls a knife, suddenly they don't know who done it?"


Female sylph bard (detective) 2 | HP: 15/15 | AC: 17 (13 Tch, 14 Fl) | CMB: +2, CMD: 15 | F: +1, R: +6, W: +3 (+2 vs. air or electricity, +4 vs. illusions) | Init: +4* | Perc: +7*, SM: +6 (+7 vs. lies)  | Speed 30 ft | Bardic Performance 6/9 | Spells 3/3| Active conditions: Careful Teamwork | Apperance

Alorea sits back with her feet up on her desk, sipping her coffee. Her blonde hair stirs gently in an unseen breeze, but her blue eyes are clouded with boredom. Work's been slow of late, and she feels as if her considerable talents (if she does say so herself) are going to waste.

Then there's a knock on the door, and she lets out a sigh. "Finally. Come on in! Door's open!" she calls out. Hopefully this guy will have something interesting for her...


GM Who Must Be Feared & Obeyed (Or At Least Bribed With Cookies)

Alorea

At your door is a freckle-faced young man, his strawberry-blond hair dirtied by bits of ash clinging to the tips. His work clothes smell of metal and smoke. His blue eyes are starting to water--from the wind or unshed tears, you can't yet say.

He carefully wipes his work boots on your mat when he enters. "I-I hope I haven't caught you at a bad time, ma'am. My name's Trev Iverness... have you looked in the newspaper lately?"

He holds up a copy of today's Lone Star Gazette.


Female Half-Elf LN Strangler 2 | AC 15, T 12, FF 13 | 11/20 hp | Fort +5, Ref +5, Will +2;| Init +4 | Percep +6 | CMD 16

Joie offers a brief salute. "Lieutenant Venard."

The half-elf enters and stands in front of Venard's desk, producing the newspaper she's found. "This story seems to have taken the imagination of our base-- and I don't think it's Private Barikan stirring up stories this time. It seems the whole city is abuzz with it."

Giving Venard a moment to read over the article (if, in fact, she's not already familiar with it), Joie explains further:
"It is my opinion that it is our duty to lend a hand, if we can spare one. I know this would typically be a police matter, of course, but it may tilt some goodwill in our favor."


GM Who Must Be Feared & Obeyed (Or At Least Bribed With Cookies)

Joie

Lieutenant Venard takes the newspaper from you and looks it over, her brow furrowing as she takes in the article's finer details.

She looks up at you when you offer your opinion. "...indeed. And it looks like one of the marshals interviewed here is from the Auburn precinct."

"Private, I have new orders for you." She folds up the newspaper and hands it back to you. "This bit of news does warrant an investigation."

"Go to the precinct off of Pilot's Square, in the Auburn District, and see what the situation is like down there. If they ask for assistance, provide whatever aid you can. A lone soldier won't step on as many toes as a full squad."

"While you're at it, you will conduct yourself with nothing less than complete professionalism. This is a golden opportunity for us. Are we clear?"


Human Swashbuckler (Musketeer) 2 | HP 18/18 | AC 18 T 13 FF 15| F +1 R +6 W +0 | Init +3 | Perception +4 | CMB +4 CMD 17

Jase's eyes fluttered open, the young man squinting as the red-tinged morning light streamed through the small eastern-faced window in his small room. He hadn't known why the rent was slightly lower in this particular room, but after his first night when the sun greeted him in its harsh embrace the next morning, he understood. His first inclination was to close his eyes against the glaring light, thoughts of dozing the day away all too welcoming.

Jase had a desire to be productive, though...to do something. Such was how every day started. Full of hope and promise and spirit and ending with too much spirits and the feeling of opportunities dissipating in the haze of gloom that was slowly settling over the young man. Plus, he was terribly thirsty. So he rolled out of bed, standing still for a moment as a wave of dizziness and nausea threatened to overwhelm him, before quickly dressing himself, getting a sip of stale water to slate his thirst while doing so.

Looking in the mirror, he realized that the dawn lighting made for a rather majestic scene behind him as he pulled at and smoothed the fabric of his clothing until he cut a rather presentable figure, if he was any judge. His brow furrowed in thought as he tried to remember what he had been arguing about the night before, something about the Shieldmarshals and their patrols of Alkenstar. Hell, he couldn't remember who he had been conversating with, let alone the details of the debate.

Shrugging at himself, then smiling at the reflection he saw in the mirror, Jase was pleased at the image that presented itself to him, until he looked deeper. Dark splotches hung under his eyes, indicative of his night before, and his eyes were a bit watery. He wiped away a small bit of crust that was on the corner of his lips, frowning at the motion. He walked to the door, determined to go down to his favorite tavern and get some water in him before deciding on what to do this day. As he reached the portal, his foot stepped on something on the floor.

Bending down, he plucked up a copy of the Lone Star Gazette, reading the headline. He smirked at the alliteration evident in the caption, but continued to read the article as he slipped out the door and into the crowded streets, making his way to his favorite daytime haunt. When he stepped inside the tavern, he walked up to the bartop, setting the paper down as he took a seat. "Just some cool water, if you please, for now." As the man started to comply, Jase asked, "You see the paper this morning? This killer is giving the authorities fits!"


female fetchling oracle of bones 2 | HP 19/19; THP 0/0; N/L 0/0 | AC 13 (17) FF 10 (14) TAC 13 | F +3, R +2. W +21 | CMB +4, CMD 17 | Init +3 | Per +1 (+2 surp/inv/inc) | Defenses: Resis C/E 5; +2 saves vs swarms/mind effect; Shadow Blending 50% conceal in dim light | Curse: only aklo in combat | Revelations: Armor of Bones 1/2hr per day | Spells: Lvl 1 5/5

Faithe had been just finished breakfast when she saw the headline. Oh she'd heard of this "Smoke Scribe Slasher" before, it was hard not to, but she'd mostly ignored the stories. This time was different for though, looking at the headline something niggled in the back of her mind, down in the dark recesses where nothing remained of her past. This time the image was...familiar.

While she didn't know what was so familiar to her about the image in the headline there was something and there was only one person she trusted to help her figure it out...Zarine. Her mind made up Faithe headed towards the Auburn district where Zarine made her home.

As she went Faithe noticed the many stares she garnered some of them lustful, some of them curious, but all of them afraid. As had become her habit since nearly being carted off to Geb she wore her normal clothing. She was dressed in a scant black leather outfit, one that just covered the important bits and kept her almost acceptable for public but revealed enough of her pale skin to make a Calistrian blush at the display. Skull like clasps held the garment together and she wored higheeled black boots that reached her thighs. Her white hair was worn long and loose and the only weapon she carried was more than intimidating enough to make people keep their hands to themselves. It was a big scythe, something most wouldn't expect a woman to try to wield, but one that she wore slung at her back with the ease of someone well trained in it's use. When she finally reached Zarine's home Faithe knocked on the door and waited.


Female Half-Elf LN Strangler 2 | AC 15, T 12, FF 13 | 11/20 hp | Fort +5, Ref +5, Will +2;| Init +4 | Percep +6 | CMD 16

"Clear as a king's glass, Lieutenant."

Assuming she's given a "Dismissed," Joie is quickly on her way with a steady stride toward the Auburn District, newspaper folded under one arm.


GM Who Must Be Feared & Obeyed (Or At Least Bribed With Cookies)

Joie

Lieutenant Venard nods. "Dismissed."
-----------------
Jase

The bartender, Ian Hamm, blinks in surprise and leans over the bar for a closer look at the paper. His bald head has a thin sheen of sweat on it, and his grey eyes widen. "Yer not serious, are ya?"

"How is this fella killin' all them writing folk and getting away with it every time?" He grumbles as he slides a full glass of water over to you. "What else does it say, here..." He squints as he reads a wrinkled section of print. "...Auburn District..."
-----------------
Faithe

A few seconds pass before Zarine's door opens. The half-elven woman stands in the doorway, her normally neat brown hair an absolute mess and her soft hazel eyes half-lidded from sleep. She's thrown on a loose blue tunic and trousers this morning.

"Faithe--caught me before coffee." She half-says, half-mumbles as she opens the door and steps aside to let you in. "How've you been doing, huh?"


Female sylph bard (detective) 2 | HP: 15/15 | AC: 17 (13 Tch, 14 Fl) | CMB: +2, CMD: 15 | F: +1, R: +6, W: +3 (+2 vs. air or electricity, +4 vs. illusions) | Init: +4* | Perc: +7*, SM: +6 (+7 vs. lies)  | Speed 30 ft | Bardic Performance 6/9 | Spells 3/3| Active conditions: Careful Teamwork | Apperance

"Coffee first, then the news," Alorea says, taking another deliberate swig from her mug. She sets it down and gestures for Trev to hand over the paper. Her eyebrows raise as she reads the headline.

"Another slasher attack? Let me guess--you knew the victim?"


GM Who Must Be Feared & Obeyed (Or At Least Bribed With Cookies)

Alorea

Trev hands the paper over when asked, and blinks several times as you ask your question. The article details that a man named Caleb Melkoste was found dead in his study in Smokeside. The marshal interviewed in the article claims that investigations are ongoing, but that the process takes time. The interview was conducted at the Auburn District precinct of Skyside.

"...well, I-I-I knew one of them." He swallows, fumbles around in a trouser pocket and pulls out a neatly-folded sheaf of parchment. After unfolding it, he turns it around to reveal a portrait sketch of an older woman with curly hair. A few wrinkles are around her eyes and mouth as she gives a warm smile. The drawing itself looks to have been quite meticulously sketched and inked.

"...her name was Kiria Iverness. She--" He chokes back a sob for a moment before continuing. "--she was my mother. She was one of the first victims."

He starts trying to say something else, but he sighs, shakes his head and looks you in the eye. "How much do you charge for your services?"


Male Dwarf LG Ranger 2 | AC 15, T 12, FF 13 | 23/23 hp | Fort +6, Ref +5, Will +3;| Init +2 | Percep +8 | CMD 16
Dragoncat wrote:

"Hmm… this is terrible news indeed.” Bahadur Jayakhumar sets the newspaper down on the table before you and scratches his chin through his impressive salt-and-pepper beard. The aged Vudrani merchant then picks up his porcelain teapot and begins to pour himself a cup of tea, its slight woody scent drifting across to you. "A scribe can earn himself great wealth back home. How can one have such disrespect for the written word and those who pen it?”

The taproom of Skyside’s Drifter’s Rest inn is quiet this morning—aside from a waiter, a couple of other patrons and the bartender, you and Bahadur are the only people here.

Daerokh frowns at Bahadur's words, running a hand through his own black beard, much shorter than the human's.

"No tea, thank you. Never been much for pine-needle water," he says. "Gotta say, if this "Slasher" tried anything in the Hold they wouldn't have even gotten one victim. Dwarven scribes are pretty damn tough...mostly because they use chisels instead of quills. You're right, though, gods-awful news. Wonder why they're targeting those folk, though. Only thing it seems to achieve is making a statement."

He waves the waiter over and requests a stout.


GM Who Must Be Feared & Obeyed (Or At Least Bribed With Cookies)

Daerokh

Your stout comes by in a couple of minutes. Bahadur looks back at the newspaper.

"Whoever they are, they seem to be making quite a statement--the Shieldmarshals appear to be at a loss as to who's behind it all." The Vudrani man's eyes narrow. "Something seems off about this... it makes me wonder just how thorough this investigation of theirs really is."

"Wouldn't you agree, Daerokh?"


female fetchling oracle of bones 2 | HP 19/19; THP 0/0; N/L 0/0 | AC 13 (17) FF 10 (14) TAC 13 | F +3, R +2. W +21 | CMB +4, CMD 17 | Init +3 | Per +1 (+2 surp/inv/inc) | Defenses: Resis C/E 5; +2 saves vs swarms/mind effect; Shadow Blending 50% conceal in dim light | Curse: only aklo in combat | Revelations: Armor of Bones 1/2hr per day | Spells: Lvl 1 5/5

Faithe looked at Zarine in amusement and said, "Still a late riser I see." Slipping inside when Zarine moved to let her Faithe unlimbered her scythe and left it near the door and out of the way as she said, "I'm..." she paused a moment as she wasn't quite sure what to say adn then continued, "I've been doing well until this morning. I saw something that...I saw the headline in the paper and it showed a picture of the most recent Slasher killing. Something about it was familiar, connected to where I came from, but I don't know what it was."


Male Dwarf LG Ranger 2 | AC 15, T 12, FF 13 | 23/23 hp | Fort +6, Ref +5, Will +3;| Init +2 | Percep +8 | CMD 16

Daerokh takes a sip of the beer.

"You...think they're being complacent on this? Or just not thorough enough? Any job worth doing is worth doing well."


GM Who Must Be Feared & Obeyed (Or At Least Bribed With Cookies)

Faithe

Zarine's home is cozy and appears normal. A kitchen sits opposite a small sitting room, with a table big enough to comfortably seat four people, a larder and what appears to be a coffeepot boiling on a nearby crude stove. She blinks a couple of times before shuffling over to the nearby coffeepot, plucking it off the stove and getting out a pair of porcelain cups.

"Before we start unpacking all that, you want any?" She asks before pouring herself some coffee in one cup.
----------------
Daerokh

Bahadur nods. "I think, perhaps, they are not being thorough enough."

He sets his teacup down and looks at you. "Whatever the case, they should be held to a higher standard. Is this not a city that prides itself on having carved out a place of order in a lawless wasteland?"


M Half-Orc Tatter / Mirror 2 - HP 16/16 - AC 15 - TAC 13 - FF 12 - CMD 14 - Init +3 - Fort +2 - Ref +3 - Will +4 - Perc +9 (+8 Smells) - Scent, Darkvision 60 - Omen 1/1 - ASF 5% - Communed - Kit 9/10
Dragoncat wrote:


"Oh, it's never the missus. She can't shoot straight to save her life." Merrick chuckles as he settles into the barber's chair.

He winces as you find the bullet in his shoulder. "Ow!" He flinches before taking your offered bottle of alcohol and taking a swig.

"Anyway--word round the smokestack is that Smokeside's ol' wordsmiths are getting picked off, one by one." Merrick becomes chattier as you go about your work. "An' the funny thing is the Shields don't have a f%!~in' clue who's behind it all."

"There's even been talk they've been thinking of hiring outside help." He chuckles. "So, what, a bullet to the back of the f@*~in' skull and they'll be on it like bloodhounds, but as soon as someone pulls a knife, suddenly they don't know who done it?"

He keeps his demeanor fairly reserved while he works, though a stray poke here and there betrays the fact that the street-doctor isn't fully engaged. "Sorry. This whole business with them scribes, makes me sick y'know?" While not a scribe in his own right, he knows the plight of those who can't defend themselves, those with a patron who demands attention and lets out a huff, "They did do nothing."

With a clank the pellet lands in a small tray and despite the blood in the air he smells the black powder, a smell that nearly makes him nauseous. Never quite get used to it.

"Alls well here, just gonna give you a cleanin' and I'll send you toward home." Pondering a moment he continues, "The problem with knives is that they don't leave no smell, they are quiet and even the poorest chum who comes through my door 'ere might have one." He gives the man a pat on the back and takes the bottle back, "The courtesy is done, a little for me now." Taking a swig he continues, "You say they're looking fer outside 'elp? I hate people gettin' killed 'ere, that's why I do what I do... But, how you think the pay is like? We all got to make ends meet." He helps the man up, "Does it move alright? Best tell me now before you palm me the coin." He pauses, "Actually, you mind if I take that gazette too? I should catch up on the goings on round these parts."

Assuming he gets paid.

Walking toward a cabinet in the back he pulls it open and throws a couple of coins in a jar, and the rest into a bigger one hiding behind a false wall. We all have dreams. Lets start making this one more of a reality.


Human Swashbuckler (Musketeer) 2 | HP 18/18 | AC 18 T 13 FF 15| F +1 R +6 W +0 | Init +3 | Perception +4 | CMB +4 CMD 17

"Dead serious." Jase quipped half-heartedly, not even grinning at his own joke as he usually would. In truth, the fact that even in technologically-advanced Alkenstar a killer could be on the loose, let alone with something as primitive as a knife or dagger, was pretty terrifying. And at the same time, exhilarating. How much recognition might he gain for apprehending or killing the animal behind these murders? The young man chalked it up to another fanciful thought that would soon reside in the massive graveyard of good intentions he already had planted six feet under.

"Dead men tell no tales...or write no tales, as it seems," He responded to the bartender, lost in thought. The argument the night before started to gain clarity, with Jase having challenged that very thought. The Shieldmarshals were normally very efficient and effective, and for them to have not even a single lead was troubling. This killer was either very good, the detective in charge was very inept, or there was something afoot. Every wise instinct told Jase to stay far away.

When Ian mentioned the location, though, Jase felt stirred to action. Probably another half-cocked idea he'd spend another couple of hours chasing, followed by a bout of self-pity and an all-night bender. Still, he didn't have much to lose. Gulping down the rest of the water, he plunked a coin on the counter and said his good-byes, wisdom having never been a forte.

Off to the Auburn District


Female Half-Elf LN Strangler 2 | AC 15, T 12, FF 13 | 11/20 hp | Fort +5, Ref +5, Will +2;| Init +4 | Percep +6 | CMD 16

It is a few minutes before Joie finds her way to the Auburn District, but not long at all after that before her knuckles rap against the door of the Auburn District's local precinct.

A single Private for something like this is either a show of good faith with no expected results or a show of good faith in me by the Lieutenant. Regardless, this puts me in a position to help the city.

She takes care to straighten her posture, giving off the aura of a proper Nexian soldier.


Male Dwarf LG Ranger 2 | AC 15, T 12, FF 13 | 23/23 hp | Fort +6, Ref +5, Will +3;| Init +2 | Percep +8 | CMD 16

"You could say that, though you could also argue that they didn't carve it so much as polish what my kin already carved when we broke through and completed the Quest for Sky."

He takes another sip.

"Are you suggesting I offer my services? I'm no lawman, but I won't be escorting caravans for a while, and if you don't sharpen your blade...and your skills...you lose your edge. And I...kind of need to eat...so it looks like mercenary work is what I'll be doing for the forseeable future."


Female sylph bard (detective) 2 | HP: 15/15 | AC: 17 (13 Tch, 14 Fl) | CMB: +2, CMD: 15 | F: +1, R: +6, W: +3 (+2 vs. air or electricity, +4 vs. illusions) | Init: +4* | Perc: +7*, SM: +6 (+7 vs. lies)  | Speed 30 ft | Bardic Performance 6/9 | Spells 3/3| Active conditions: Careful Teamwork | Apperance
Dragoncat wrote:

"...her name was Kiria Iverness. She--" He chokes back a sob for a moment before continuing. "--she was my mother. She was one of the first victims."

He starts trying to say something else, but he sighs, shakes his head and looks you in the eye. "How much do you charge for your services?"

Alorea's expression softens slightly. She know the pain of losing one's parents all too well. "Sorry for your loss. My standard retainer is 5 gp per day, plus expenses. If you've got the coin, I'm happy to take the case."


female fetchling oracle of bones 2 | HP 19/19; THP 0/0; N/L 0/0 | AC 13 (17) FF 10 (14) TAC 13 | F +3, R +2. W +21 | CMB +4, CMD 17 | Init +3 | Per +1 (+2 surp/inv/inc) | Defenses: Resis C/E 5; +2 saves vs swarms/mind effect; Shadow Blending 50% conceal in dim light | Curse: only aklo in combat | Revelations: Armor of Bones 1/2hr per day | Spells: Lvl 1 5/5

Nodding, Faithe said, "Yes," as she made her way to the table and took a seat. She crossed her legs at the knees and waited for the coffee to be given to her, saying nothing more about the picture for the moment, and watched her...companion? Friend?, she didn't really know which to call Zarine. Faithe couldn't even remember if she'd had a friend before so she didn't know what to consider Zarine.

Faithe waited with the patience of the grave while the coffee was readied and accepted it with a, "Thanks," and taking a slow sip of the hot liquid. The stuff was certainly pungent, very unique among the food and drink she'd had since arriving here, and she found she rather liked it. She'd tried it with cream and sugar in it but the watering down of the strong taste just didn't taste as good to her so she always took her coffee black now. She knew that Zarine wasn't a morning person like she herself was so Faithe waited patiently for the other woman to finish her coffee and get a second cup and to start the conversation herself.


GM Who Must Be Feared & Obeyed (Or At Least Bribed With Cookies)

Joie

The door opens after a moment. A ruddy-faced dwarf in a wide-brimmed grey hat and thick duster opens the door, wrinkling his nose as he sees you. "Aye?" He asks, his dark beard barely moving as he speaks. "If ye got a complaint, the desk is down the hall to the right."

He opens the door and lets you step inside. The entrance hall to the precinct is almost entirely walled and floored with golden-brown hardwood, with a beige rug patterned to look like shifting sand dunes dominating the centre of the room. Several cushioned wooden chairs sit against the walls of the lobby, with a few coffee tables between them for good measure. The coffee tables are covered with old books and newspapers--some of which look to be used to the point of almost completely falling apart.

Behind the elaborate wood-paneled kiosk at the front, the lobby branches off to the left, going south, and to the right, going north. Several doors can be seen lining the hallway.
--------------
Tuco

"Feels better. Still stings, but better."

Merrick flogs a few gold pieces your way once you've finished prying out the bullet lodged in him. "I hear there's a bounty on the head of whoever's behind the killings--upwards of about 2,000 gold pieces, or summat!" Merrick says as he gets up from the chair.

"Help yourself." He hands the Gazette off to you.

You gain 5 GP.

The Article:
The Gazette's headline article describes how a scribe named Caleb Melkoste, aged 36, was found dead within his shop in the Ferrous Quarter of Smokeside. According to a shieldmarshal stationed in the Auburn District of Skyside (who requested to remain unidentified), information about the crime is sparse, and more details may be forthcoming if the senior shieldmarshals agree to release them to the public.

--------------
Alorea

Trev blinks his eyes for a moment or two, trying to clear the tears away. "...we can afford that." He sighs in relief.

He looks for a chair to sit in before continuing. "The Shieldmarshals told us they'd catch whoever was responsible soon. But two more people are dead and they haven't found anything. Or they've found something, but they're not saying anything to at least let us know how things are progressing."

"Maybe... maybe if you offered your help, they'd finally make some progress? There has to be something you can do!"
--------------
Jase

You take off from your old haunt at a clip, hustling your way through Skyside with purpose. A few turns down the right streets, and about ten minutes later, you reach the clean, cobbled lanes of Pilot's Square. The many airships of the Aeromantic Fleet sit in the centre of the square (which is really more of a field, to be frank), each of them standing tall and proud.

The precinct isn't too far away--you reach it in time to see someone else walk in the door ahead of you.
--------------
Daerokh

Bahadur nods. "Think of it as a chance to broaden your horizons, if nothing else."

"I mean, I am not yet prepared to make the journey back to Quantium--the quartz deal is still being worked out."
--------------
Faithe

Zarine almost flops into the chair opposite you and starts sipping her coffee.

Halfway through her first cup, she blinks several times and stretches. "Okay, yes. The Slasher. Seeing the headline and picture jogged your memory a bit." She recaps, nodding. "There was something about that murder that you were familiar with, or something? I looked at the picture--looks like someone had a few issues to work out."

"And the weird thing is that the Shieldmarshals can't seem to find out anything about who's doing it all." Zarine opens her eyes fully before gulping down the rest of her coffee.


M Half-Orc Tatter / Mirror 2 - HP 16/16 - AC 15 - TAC 13 - FF 12 - CMD 14 - Init +3 - Fort +2 - Ref +3 - Will +4 - Perc +9 (+8 Smells) - Scent, Darkvision 60 - Omen 1/1 - ASF 5% - Communed - Kit 9/10

Tuco drops the coins in his savings jar and carefully puts the false wall back. It takes him some time to finish cleaning the place from Merrick's mess, the Gazette drawing his attention.

"No more reaction, we act." He speaks out loud, the feeling of his patron's eyes upon him. Its still not something he's entirely used to but when important moments come he has that feeling of being watched, stronger than ever.

Grabbing his supplies, he straps up his armor and eyes the small handmirror on the wall. "Yous coming wit' me." Making sure his whip is securely fastened he heads out the door, the bell chiming as the wood slams shut.

Heading over to the district


Female sylph bard (detective) 2 | HP: 15/15 | AC: 17 (13 Tch, 14 Fl) | CMB: +2, CMD: 15 | F: +1, R: +6, W: +3 (+2 vs. air or electricity, +4 vs. illusions) | Init: +4* | Perc: +7*, SM: +6 (+7 vs. lies)  | Speed 30 ft | Bardic Performance 6/9 | Spells 3/3| Active conditions: Careful Teamwork | Apperance

Alorea helps Trev fill out the contract for her services. Once complete, she stands up and reaches for her hat and cloak. "I make no guarantees, Trev, but I will definitely see what I can do."

She ushers the boy outside and locks up her shop, then closes her eyes and takes a deep breath, feeling the wind on her face. Her nose wiggles slightly. "I smell a mystery," she says, then makes her way to the latest crime scene.


Female Half-Elf LN Strangler 2 | AC 15, T 12, FF 13 | 11/20 hp | Fort +5, Ref +5, Will +2;| Init +4 | Percep +6 | CMD 16

Joie steps in with a polite greeting. "Joie Patronne, Private First Class. I am here on behalf of Lieutenant Maya Venard of the Nexian embassy. Who should I speak to in order to lend my aid?" she asks, taking in the room.


Human Swashbuckler (Musketeer) 2 | HP 18/18 | AC 18 T 13 FF 15| F +1 R +6 W +0 | Init +3 | Perception +4 | CMB +4 CMD 17

Looking at the airships in the Aeromantic Fleet always filled Jase with awe, even though he rarely ventured over to Skyside. He had often thought he'd get over the feeling as he got older, as the technological marvels of Alkenstar seemed to be business as usual to much of the populace, but the feeling hadn't receded yet. After staring at the fleet for a moment, he caught motion out of the corner of his eyes and turned to find a rather severe-looking woman in the uniform of Nex entering the Precinct.

The young man's face clouded over in irritation at seeing the garb, but reminded himself that Alkenstar was a principality of Nex, technically speaking, so it would be best to keep his opinion to himself. Jase quickly covered the distance to the door, rapping against the door with several light taps. He squared his shoulders, checking his right hip to make sure his weapon wasn't hanging awry and could possibly ruin his image.


female fetchling oracle of bones 2 | HP 19/19; THP 0/0; N/L 0/0 | AC 13 (17) FF 10 (14) TAC 13 | F +3, R +2. W +21 | CMB +4, CMD 17 | Init +3 | Per +1 (+2 surp/inv/inc) | Defenses: Resis C/E 5; +2 saves vs swarms/mind effect; Shadow Blending 50% conceal in dim light | Curse: only aklo in combat | Revelations: Armor of Bones 1/2hr per day | Spells: Lvl 1 5/5

Faithe nodded and said, "I don't know what it was exactly, it must have been the gray place from before," she gestured vaguely implying everything, "here." She sighed in slight aggravation as she drank from her coffee again. After a moment she continued, "I don't know what was familiar in it, nothing stands out but there was something familiar about it."

Drinking some more of her Coffee Faithe turned her gaze to Zarine again, "I don't know what to do about it. I think I need to get involved somehow if I want to find out what happened to me to bring me here and why I don't remember any of it." She seemed aggravated at her helplessness as her foot bounced in agitation in the air, "I had hoped you'd have a suggestion."


Male Dwarf LG Ranger 2 | AC 15, T 12, FF 13 | 23/23 hp | Fort +6, Ref +5, Will +3;| Init +2 | Percep +8 | CMD 16
Dragoncat wrote:

Daerokh

Bahadur nods. "Think of it as a chance to broaden your horizons, if nothing else."

"I mean, I am not yet prepared to make the journey back to Quantium--the quartz deal is still being worked out."

Daerokh continues to drink his beer.

"So why'd you invite ME here, Baha? I don't really have much pull with the family businesses anymore...well, even less pull than the little amount I had."

He strokes his beard, tugging it a little and sighs.

"You ever had problems with your family?"


GM Who Must Be Feared & Obeyed (Or At Least Bribed With Cookies)

Daerokh

Daerokh wrote:
"So why'd you invite ME here, Baha? I don't really have much pull with the family businesses anymore...well, even less pull than the little amount I had."

Bahadur glances up at you. "I'm well aware, rest assured."

"I thought that, perhaps, you'd see an opportunity in this." He holds up the Gazette and points at the headline. "I mean, there are only so many times you can escort a caravan across the Wastes before it gets unbearably dull."

Daerokh wrote:
"You ever had problems with your family?"

The Vudrani man sighs. "...a few times."

"Now, remind me--where's the Auburn District, again?"

GM Rolls:
1d20 + 12 ⇒ (13) + 12 = 25

You get the impression that he's asking more for your benefit than his.
-------------------
Faithe

Zarine has already finished off her first cup and poured herself a second.

"Well, it says here the interviewed marshal was from the Auburn District precinct... maybe that's a good place to start?" She shrugs. "I understand the Shieldmarshals are offering a bounty on this 'Smokeside Scribe Slasher'--it'd be a chance to find out more and make a tidy profit too."
-------------------
Auburn District Precinct

The dwarven marshal's brow furrows for a moment at the mention of the Nexian embassy, but says nothing. He glances down the left hallway. "Shieldmarshal Greystone's the man heading up the investigation. I think he's in a meeting right now--I'll let him know folks are here to see him."

Another person comes in behind Joie--a handsome young man with dirty blonde hair cut short and groomed stylishly, with bright blue eyes full of curiosity.
-------------------
Tuco

The walk to the Auburn District is a long one, but nothing you aren't used to. Taking a carriage might be a bit out of your budget's reach, anyway. The lung-itching smog of Smokeside gradually thins out as you reach the Old Bridge, being replaced with a fresh breeze coming across the Ustradi River.

When you get halfway across, you feel an uncomfortable prickling across your skin and a faint buzz on the edge of your hearing as the presence of magic makes itself known. You're a little too familiar with it for your liking--it's the roiling, ever-resentful magical currents of Skyside.

You pass by one of the nicer neighborhoods of Skyside as you go, wandering past a two-story home with an uncannily white facade and green shutters around its windows. You don't often make house calls, but you remember the homes of patients you've visited before.


Female Half-Elf LN Strangler 2 | AC 15, T 12, FF 13 | 11/20 hp | Fort +5, Ref +5, Will +2;| Init +4 | Percep +6 | CMD 16

Joie gives a polite nod, despite the dwarf's obvious expression of distaste. She walks straight past Jase on her way to a good corner of the lobby in which to stand and wait for SM Greystone, giving only a brief, cheery "Citizen" as she passes by.

Standing at attention, she cuts quite an imposing figure; though she's only half elven, she seems to have been blessed with their height, easily standing over six feet high.

Now that she has nothing to do but wait for the Shieldmarshal, however, she doesn't seem particularly discreet about the fact that she is watching the young man with some curiosity.

I wonder if he might be here for the article as well. Definitely looks the adventuring sort.


GM Who Must Be Feared & Obeyed (Or At Least Bribed With Cookies)

Alorea

Your walk to the Ferrous Quarter doesn't take you too long--comparing the street names to the one mentioned in the Gazette you find where you need to go easily enough.

Spark Lane is normally a quiet little neighbourhood with several smaller shops devoted to knickknacks, odds and ends. Today, it's abuzz with worry and activity. The scribe's shop has been cordoned off from the street with several lengths of hemp rope, blocking traffic in both directions. There are a few shieldmarshals loitering about the scene, and a small crowd of bystanders hanging back to gawk at the proceedings.

One of the marshals, a tired-looking, fair-skinned young woman in a grey wide-brimmed hat and brown duster walks up to the cordon as you approach. Her six-pointed silver crossed-rifle shield-badge appears to have been smudged with fingerprints and soot.

"Hold up there. This is a crime scene--Shieldmarshal business. No civilians past this point." She holds up a shaking hand, her green eyes on yours.


Female sylph bard (detective) 2 | HP: 15/15 | AC: 17 (13 Tch, 14 Fl) | CMB: +2, CMD: 15 | F: +1, R: +6, W: +3 (+2 vs. air or electricity, +4 vs. illusions) | Init: +4* | Perc: +7*, SM: +6 (+7 vs. lies)  | Speed 30 ft | Bardic Performance 6/9 | Spells 3/3| Active conditions: Careful Teamwork | Apperance

"Of course, Marshal. If I see any civilians about, I will certainly pass the message along," Alorea says wryly. "I'm Alorea, of the Whispering Wind Detective Agency. I'm here to help, and based on the bags under your eyes, I'd say that you could use all that you can get. Mind if I take a look around? I've got a knack for these sorts of scenes."

Diplomacy: 1d20 + 7 ⇒ (7) + 7 = 14


GM Who Must Be Feared & Obeyed (Or At Least Bribed With Cookies)

Alorea

The marshal blinks and visibly stifles a yawn.

"Happy to hear it ma'am." Her expression turns apologetic. "Problem is, we're supposed to wait for the investigation team from Auburn precinct to arrive."

She blinks again. "Are you with the investigation team?"


Female sylph bard (detective) 2 | HP: 15/15 | AC: 17 (13 Tch, 14 Fl) | CMB: +2, CMD: 15 | F: +1, R: +6, W: +3 (+2 vs. air or electricity, +4 vs. illusions) | Init: +4* | Perc: +7*, SM: +6 (+7 vs. lies)  | Speed 30 ft | Bardic Performance 6/9 | Spells 3/3| Active conditions: Careful Teamwork | Apperance

"You betcha!" the sylph says without missing a beat! "I'm the advance investigator."

Bluff: 1d20 + 7 ⇒ (20) + 7 = 27


Human Swashbuckler (Musketeer) 2 | HP 18/18 | AC 18 T 13 FF 15| F +1 R +6 W +0 | Init +3 | Perception +4 | CMB +4 CMD 17

Jase heard the dwarf's words to the Nexian soldier, grumbling under his breath. Waiting wasn't exactly a strong suit of his even in the best of times, and he wasn't feeling too well this morning. Still, he suspected complaining about it would likely only make the wait longer, or even get him thrown out of the Precinct or a quick trip to the clink. At least he had heard the man's name...ShieldMarshal what's his name. Damn...he'd have to go ask the dwarf, now.

He met Joie's eyes as she passed him with a polite greeting, noticing with slight surprise that she was of a height with him. As she walked by, his neck swiveled with the interest of a young man, noting the sleek curves in her figure and the slender, supple build along with her easy, balanced motion. Whoever she was, she likely knew how to end a fight. And...she was looking at him, he noticed, as his eyes finished their foray upwards and landed on her face. This causing him even more irritation, he turned his gaze away and stormed over to the dwarf at the counter.

"Jase Everluck, ummmm...concerned citizen, here to see the Shieldmarshal about the investigation." He waited for the dwarf's reply, if one was forthcoming, then hesitated. He could go and wait across the room, but that would imply either intimidation or embarrassment, and he didn't want the Nexian woman to feel empowered by either. Decision made, he crossed the room and stepped to within a few feet of the half-elven woman before crossing his arms and putting his back against the wall, one foot up and propped against the vertical surface.


M Half-Orc Tatter / Mirror 2 - HP 16/16 - AC 15 - TAC 13 - FF 12 - CMD 14 - Init +3 - Fort +2 - Ref +3 - Will +4 - Perc +9 (+8 Smells) - Scent, Darkvision 60 - Omen 1/1 - ASF 5% - Communed - Kit 9/10

The walk is long but he knows his budget, he has his goal in mind and decides that walking is good for his health, despite the polluting air. Wonder what happened to 'em? He passes by the house and remembers making the house call, it was a strange one at that but something lingered in the back of his head about it. Tuco nearly catches himself turning his head when he thinks he hears a shutter open and close, but thinks nothing of it.

He moves to an alleyway and thinks about casting a minor spell to clean his clothes, the desire to feel the arcane arts on him... However he knows better than to use magic in such a frivolous fashion after the incident and waits.

Eventually he makes his way over the Shieldmarshal's office and tries to wipe as much of the dirt and blood off as he can. Pro'lly wise, best not to walk into 'ere with blood on me hands. He feels like he can hear the mysterious patron laugh, whatever he did it seemed to draw the attention from the mirror hidden in his coat.

He takes a deep breath and smells the air then steps inside.

"I 'erd you be needin' 'elp with the Slasher. Who can you send me to so I can lend my hands?" Surprised, he sees a couple of other people wanting to do the same thing. "Sorry, I'll uh, wait in line." Some moments pass awardly as he steals glances at the two others waiting and he smells the air, Liquor in here? Someone gettin' to work early. Eventually he sees the man storming to the counter and the half-elf woman waiting with the patience of a professional. Overhearing the dwarf he chimes up "They pullin' our legs 'ere? People dyin' and yous making us wait?"


GM Who Must Be Feared & Obeyed (Or At Least Bribed With Cookies)

Alorea

The marshal nods. "Alrighty then. Right this way."

She beckons you to step over the cordon, pointing into the darkened entryway of the shop.
-----------------
Auburn Precinct

The dwarf glances up at Jase from beneath his wide-brimmed hat. "That so, eh?"

"Well, have a seat. I'm sure he'll be out shortly." He looks back down to his papers.

DC 15 Perception:
"Assuming Barnes lets him go without too much of an earful..." He grumbles under his breath.

The sound of the precinct door opening causes the dwarf's head to rise again. He blinks in surprise when he sees the half-orc stepping through the door. "If it's the investigation you're here for, Shieldmarshal Greystone should be out of his meeting soon." He then nods to a seat in the lobby.


M Half-Orc Tatter / Mirror 2 - HP 16/16 - AC 15 - TAC 13 - FF 12 - CMD 14 - Init +3 - Fort +2 - Ref +3 - Will +4 - Perc +9 (+8 Smells) - Scent, Darkvision 60 - Omen 1/1 - ASF 5% - Communed - Kit 9/10

He takes a seat and plays with some twine, "'Ave I seen yous around these parts before?" He shakes his head toward Jase.

Perception: 1d20 + 8 ⇒ (19) + 8 = 27 To overhear the dwarf

Barnes? Who?


Female Half-Elf LN Strangler 2 | AC 15, T 12, FF 13 | 11/20 hp | Fort +5, Ref +5, Will +2;| Init +4 | Percep +6 | CMD 16

Taking 10 on Perception for 16.

It doesn't take Joie all too long to size up the young man as no pit and all polish; likely the sort that heard the stories of the gallant knight riding on a shining steed, and thought that buying a rapier out of a bad blacksmith's discount barrel was the first step towards matching him.

Still, he was a citizen of Nex as much as the next man, and she had to treat him with respect.

"Kind of you to offer your assistance, Citizen," says the soldier. "PFC Joie Patronne. Pleased to meet you."

She keeps her hands clasped at her front.


Female Half-Elf LN Strangler 2 | AC 15, T 12, FF 13 | 11/20 hp | Fort +5, Ref +5, Will +2;| Init +4 | Percep +6 | CMD 16

"And you as well," adds Joie as Tuco enters.

Didn't see your posts! I'll figure out Joie's appraisal of Tuco... a little later.


Human Swashbuckler (Musketeer) 2 | HP 18/18 | AC 18 T 13 FF 15| F +1 R +6 W +0 | Init +3 | Perception +4 | CMB +4 CMD 17

Turning to look at Joie as she addressed him, Jase arched an eyebrow, speaking a little too crossly. "Well someone has to stop this killer." He spared a glance over at the dwarf even as he winced...not knowing when to shut his mouth had also never been a forte. At least he hadn't responded with his first thought of 'The pleasure is all yours'. While it would have felt nice, it looked like the woman was likely going to be involved in all this, and also looked like she could possibly beat him down if he pushed her too far. Besides, she had been nothing but cordial. Relaxing his tone, he then added more pleasantly, "Jase Everluck, formerly of Cloudreaver Keep."

Perception: 1d20 + 4 ⇒ (2) + 4 = 6

The half-orc barging in and asking about the Slasher moments earlier was a welcome distraction, a smirk crossing the young man's lips as the late arrival issued an apology and went to sit down after the dwarf responded to him. "No kidding, right? There's only people dying out there, but we have an important meeting." He rolled his eyes, then looked closer at Tuco as the man asked if they knew one another.

Come to think of it, he had seen the man before. Or rather, he more remembered his distinctive patchwork of rags he wore. He had had a few drinks with the man a couple of times, and even remembered the half-orc had in passing told him how to brew a cheap concoction to help alleviate the hangover following a hard night of drinking. Of course, Jase had forgotten the measurements and ended up making himself more sick. The man had a nickname...Stitcher, maybe? He thought the man had a side job of patching up wounds. Or maybe that was his whole job...he hadn't bothered to remember at the time. Hindsight and all.

Giving the Nexian soldier a sideeye, he replied, "I think we've shared a drink or two together at the Crippled Mermaid over in Smokeside." Of course, it was likely that Jase had been droning on about independence from Nex and whatnot that night. He hoped, if the man remembered, he'd have the good sense not to mention it.


Female sylph bard (detective) 2 | HP: 15/15 | AC: 17 (13 Tch, 14 Fl) | CMB: +2, CMD: 15 | F: +1, R: +6, W: +3 (+2 vs. air or electricity, +4 vs. illusions) | Init: +4* | Perc: +7*, SM: +6 (+7 vs. lies)  | Speed 30 ft | Bardic Performance 6/9 | Spells 3/3| Active conditions: Careful Teamwork | Apperance

Alorea follows the marshal, her keen eyes piercing the gloom.


GM Who Must Be Feared & Obeyed (Or At Least Bribed With Cookies)

Alorea

The interior of the scribe shop appears to be a mix of a study and a bookstore. The shelves of the front room are fixed to the northern and western walls, with a serving counter affixed to the eastern wall. The bookshelves are overflowing with books on all manner of subjects, ranging from atlases of the continent of Garund to treatises on the various forms of wildlife of the Mana Wastes. The air seems cleaner in here, if only because the itching in your chest has died down.

"Fair warning, detective--it's not a pretty sight." The marshal says as she leads you through a doorway on the north wall of the shop floor.

The study through the north door is in complete disarray, and the smell of blood overpowers the lingering odour of smoke from the outside. Laying across an oaken desk is the corpse of a brown-haired man, his face splotchy from soot and blood and frozen in pain. His white robes are stained with massive red blotches, as well as the many documents and pieces of paper scattered across the desk. A cold breeze blows in through a hole in one of the windows on the east wall. One of the bookshelves on the north wall is a complete mess, with a pile of books lying at the bottom of it. A single lantern hanging from the ceiling over the desk is the only source of illumination in this room.

The marshal coughs and turns away. "You have the run of the scene, detective. I'll go back and wait for the rest of the investigation team."


Female sylph bard (detective) 2 | HP: 15/15 | AC: 17 (13 Tch, 14 Fl) | CMB: +2, CMD: 15 | F: +1, R: +6, W: +3 (+2 vs. air or electricity, +4 vs. illusions) | Init: +4* | Perc: +7*, SM: +6 (+7 vs. lies)  | Speed 30 ft | Bardic Performance 6/9 | Spells 3/3| Active conditions: Careful Teamwork | Apperance

Alorea nods at the marshal, her face impsssive. Only after the other woman has left does the sylph retch just a little bit. The sight of death still leaves her a bit sick to her stomach, though fortunately the constant breeze that accompanies her prevents the stench from reaching her nostrils.

She begins a methodical search of the shop. She starts by studying the body, careful not to touch it. Then she turns her attention to the disturbed bookshelf before finally investigating the desk.

Take 20 on Perception for a total of 25, if time allows it.


GM Who Must Be Feared & Obeyed (Or At Least Bribed With Cookies)

Alorea: You're in Smokeside. Magic doesn't work here.


Female sylph bard (detective) 2 | HP: 15/15 | AC: 17 (13 Tch, 14 Fl) | CMB: +2, CMD: 15 | F: +1, R: +6, W: +3 (+2 vs. air or electricity, +4 vs. illusions) | Init: +4* | Perc: +7*, SM: +6 (+7 vs. lies)  | Speed 30 ft | Bardic Performance 6/9 | Spells 3/3| Active conditions: Careful Teamwork | Apperance

Sorry! Edited previous post.

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