GM ShadowLord's Tyrant's Grasp - Group 1

Game Master The Rising Phoenix

Roll 20

LOOT!


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The Exchange

Human Fighter 1 / Barbarian 2 | HP 33/33 [39/39 Rage] [DR/1] | AC 18 [15 Rage]; Tch 12; FF 16 | F +8; R +2; W +3 | CMB+6; CMD 17 | Speed 40 ft | Init +2 | Heavy Flail: +6 (1d10+4/19-20) | Perc +7

"We're not entirely dead, but we're certainly not alive," Vlad responds.


Channel 3/5, Bolstering Touch 6/6, Seize the Initiative 5/6
Spells Remaining:
See Sheet
Spells/Effects Active:
AC 17 T 10 FF 17 | Current HP 24/24| F +4 R +1 W +7 (+1 vs illusion+charm)| Init +0 | Perc +3

Knowledge (planes): 1d20 + 5 ⇒ (1) + 5 = 6
Marya is too upset still and finds herself drawing a complete blank on what kind of psychopomp these new friends are. She lets out a sigh of relief as they proceed to start up friendly conversation. She DID remember that psychopomps can be very excentric, and one can be wildly different from another, even of the same type. Much more so than archons or demons and whatnot, anyways.

Marya wipes her eyes as she approachs Umble and Thoot. Their situation is precarious on this plane, and she really doesn't want to be the one to say something wrong and get everyone blasted out of their bodies or something. And to make matters worse, she can't remember anything she learned about talking to psychopomps. All she can think of is that rich ass Reginald Thornsbury who sat in the back of Professor Westingshire's class wasting class time with stupid hypotheticals about whether psychopomps like jokes and if so, do they prefer knock-knock or puns. Her voice is uncharacteristically shaky and timid as she tries to address the Umble and Thoot, hoping that maybe if she just talks it out, something can jog her memory. "Hi...there. Um...I'm Marya. I have your book. Well, your leader's book. Pharasma, that is. It's good. The book. Or "goodilicious" if that's how you prefer to put it." She pulls out her copy of The Bones Land in a Spiral and holds it up, then she waves at the little silent masked bird. "Had a professor at seminary with one of you little ones as her familiar. Named "Nevermore." The bird, not the professor. Her name was Suranne." The memory of Professor Westingshire's strong arms and tweed suits springs up from a decade ago, finally spurring Marya to try to regain control of herself by smacking the side of her head and shaking her face out. "Sorry, been a hells of a day so far. What I'm trying to say is that it's a pleasure to meet you and we'd really like your help figuring out what we need to do and where we need to go."

Diplomacy: 1d20 + 7 ⇒ (13) + 7 = 20


M Human Paladin of Sarenrae 1/Oracle of Life 2 | HP 27/27 | AC 19/13/16 | F +4, R +3, W +5 | CMB +2, CMD 15 | Scimitar +2 (1d6) | Longbow +5 (1d8) | Init -1 | Perception -1 (Deaf)

Knowledge planes: 1d20 + 4 ⇒ (10) + 4 = 14

Damian didn't know much about Pharasma, but he had worked as a clerk in the Sarenite monastery library, and he knew how to find the things he didn't know yet. Reaching for the book that Marya is waving about, he whispers. "If I may. There should be a chapter in there - "The Nomenclature of Faithful Servants" or somesuch. It should hold an indication of what these two are. And there should be an index, or table of contents."


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Incoming spam! Grab your popcorn!

[spoiler=RE: Damian's reference to "Nosoi" in the good book]
osois eagerly fill the roles of clerks, scribes, and messengers in the bureaucracy of the hereafter. They record the circumstances of each mortal’s death, any judgments for and against its soul, and its final destination along the Outer Planes. But unlike more tireless, mechanical outsiders, nosois are also prone to powerful whims, boasting contests, and petty theft.

Mortals recognize nosois in their roles as messengers, counselors of troubled or disbelieving dead, and guides along the River of Souls, and some ancient texts refer to them as scribe psychopomps, death’s messengers, and yanakeion.

Many large and well-tended graveyards or catacombs play host to a nosoi who tends to the newly passed and keeps a watchful eye out for the looming taint of undeath. Nosois’ bodies take the form of mortal songbirds—usually crows, sparrows, and especially whippoorwills—though like all other psychopomps they wear graceful, elegant funerary masks that accentuate their sharp beaks and empty eyes. Many also craft decorative artificial tails from small bric-a-brac that trail behind them as they soar through Purgatory.

Nosois are typically measure about 1 foot in length, though their tails may double or triple that length. They are deceptively heavy, weighing between 10 and 15 pounds.[/spoiler]

Knowledge Vanth:
Stern, silent, and cloaked in ragged black wings, vanth psychopomps serve as stoic guardians of Purgatory and watchers along the routes of the dead. A vanth looks like a black skeleton with ravenlike wings and a mask resembling a vulture’s skull.

Also known as reapers, angels of death, or amzranei, vanths protect the departed from those wishing to eat or steal their mortal souls, recapture escaped souls trying to flee their assigned fates, and are death’s foot soldiers against whatever would disrupt the natural cycle of mortality. They may also guard the dead and death’s assets, such as forgotten cemeteries, unattended mausoleums, and sacred groves.

A vanth weighs 400 pounds and stands 8 feet tall, though its slumped posture means it can look most adult humanoids in the eye. Vanths are ancient creatures, perhaps predating the current gods of death, and are rumored to be ascended souls of a distant world of death-worshiping soldiers. They rarely speak or show emotion and their hollow voices carry unnaturally far. A vanth’s scythe is a badge of its station, reflecting its role as a harvester of souls. It features symbols in a language that was already lost when the death gods claimed Purgatory.

Most outsiders scorn vanths, as the psychopomps have no concern for law, rightfulness, or personal gain—only duty. Vanths view any outsider visiting Purgatory as a potential threat, and stalk angels and demons alike.

Umble nods through Marya's fumbling introduction. "Oh, most assuredlies you have experienced a stupdendousliness day! Welcome to the Boneyard Marya, we are always happy to have those that serve the Lady of the Graves!"

Rajuna wrote:
Umble, if ya know. Let's say a Celedon died in our world... would it come here? And if it did, would it know it was dead?"

She replies "Interestinglyness, celedons are not actually alive. They would never visit the Boneyard outside of their assigned duties here."

Rajuna wrote:
"Is there someone we need to talk to about gettin' back to where we belong?"

"Oh with all certaintuity! The wait for her magisterial presence is normally any number of centuries, but given the atypicallity of your arrival, I expect the Lady of Graves will see you in just a scant tens of years!"

Feena wrote:
"I guess the most important question is do you know what happened to the people in town? We haven't been able to learn anything and fear the worst about what might have happened. The second question is do you know how we can get back to Golarion?"

The tall creature with the wings and jackal-skull head softly raps Umble’s head, then points to the entrance to a nearby valley. “Ah, Thoot, now that is a brilliant idea!” exclaims the gregarious bird. “You are from Roslar’s Coffer, and they are from Roslar’s Coffer. Perhaps you can help us? If so, we can provide you with some very helpful information about wending you in a homewardly direction."

“Some awful tragedy befell this Roslar’s Coffer. Everyone there died quite suddenly overnight. Well, everyone but you, apparently, but in any case, the sum of the populatory has deposited here, dead or otherwise. Their souls are milling about in that valley over there. As happens on such calamitous occasions, the inhabitants aren’t quite ready to admit that they’ve died. Despite their obvious amortality.

“Now, Thoot and I, we are not psychopomps in the greatest esteem. One might say we’re on our last chances around here. But because these souls have arrived in our territory, it’s our duty to make them accept their mortality and move them along in a soulwardly way. But they took one look at us, called us ‘monsters,’ and accosted us with homicidal intent. They wouldn’t allow any discussionment. Now, eventually, more powerful psychopomps will be along to settle this all out, but Thoot and I will be in a terrible amount of trouble in light of this failing. Here is our propositionality: if you convince these souls they’ve expired—as, until the recent event of their passing that you somehow avoided, you were among their kind—we can tell you about the Dead Roads: the roads from the Boneyard to mortal worlds, that is. Have we a deal?”


female human sorceress 3 | HP 15/15; THP 0/0; N/L 0/10 | AC 12, TAC 12, FF 10 | F +2, R +4, W +4 | CMB +1, CMD 13 | Init +2 | Per +3 Immolation Aura 3/3rnds | Spells: 1st 6/6

Feena's enthusiasm for asking questions of the two psychopomps caused her to finally ask one she was hoping she wouldn't hear. Her face paled and she dropped to her knees as she said quietly, "No, everyone is....dead!?" She choked back a sob, "Everyone but us?!" She seemed utterly distraught at the thought as she said, "That means Gregory is..."

Feena simply knelt there, not replying to the psychopomp's request for the moment as she tried to come to terms with the end of her world. Feena couldn't comprehend how this had happened and she tried to focus on the request of the two before them. It took her some time but she finally said quietly, "Alright,"{/b] she looked up at the two psychopomps, [b]"I'll do it, I'll help you convince them they have passed on, I owe it to Father Gregory to help him at the very least."

Feena rose from the ground and wiped away the tears that had gathered there. "Once I have finished here, and we use these dead roads you talked about, I will find out what happened and I will bring Sarenrae's wrath down upon them!" By the time she finished there was a great deal of anger behind her words and there was something like the cry of a phoenix as an undertone to her voice once again as her eyes blazed like a pair of brilliant flames.


HP:16 | AC:16 ; T:14 ; FF:12 ; CMD:16 | Fort:+3 ; Ref:+6 ; Will:+4 | Init:+4 ; PER:+7

'Tens of years' was too long to wait... and earning some consideration from Umble and Thoot could be critical. "Deal." he answers crisply, grief could wait.


M Human Paladin of Sarenrae 1/Oracle of Life 2 | HP 27/27 | AC 19/13/16 | F +4, R +3, W +5 | CMB +2, CMD 15 | Scimitar +2 (1d6) | Longbow +5 (1d8) | Init -1 | Perception -1 (Deaf)

Damian looks on in confusion. Feena falling to her knees in tears, what was that about?

He turns to Marya and the others.

"Are they saying something? They don't have lips for me to read." He smiles apologetically.


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Going to let a few more people react to the news that everyone you knew in town is now dead.


HP:16 | AC:16 ; T:14 ; FF:12 ; CMD:16 | Fort:+3 ; Ref:+6 ; Will:+4 | Init:+4 ; PER:+7

Rajuna faces Damian and delivers the news. "Sorry about this but... everyone in Roslar's Coffer died last night. They are in that valley over there. They are havin' trouble understandin' that they have passed on. We need to convince them of the truth, so they can go on to their just rewards." He tries to find a less black patch of news. "While it hurts, at least we'll have a chance to say goodbye. It ain't much comfort but it's better than the alternative."


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M Human Paladin of Sarenrae 1/Oracle of Life 2 | HP 27/27 | AC 19/13/16 | F +4, R +3, W +5 | CMB +2, CMD 15 | Scimitar +2 (1d6) | Longbow +5 (1d8) | Init -1 | Perception -1 (Deaf)

"..."

No words come to Damian upon hearing the news. His insides feel hollow and he is cold all over. He is standing on the lip of a black, infinite abyss. It would be very easy to take a step and just fall. Give himself over to madness, to oblivion, to nothingness. He doesn't feel pain yet, but he knows it will come, oh, it will come. He can sense the promise of it, the thousand sharp teeth that will sink into his heart and mind and cause unbearable agony.

"..."

Everyone, dead? Everyone? Suzana? Polina? EVERYONE? ...Norri? And they're supposed to help them pass on? What kind of help is that? Damian's hands clench and unclench at his sides as his mind desperately tries to find an alternative, another way, maybe they can still be returned to life, maybe this can be undone, somehow. But this is Pharasma, this is the Boneyard, save for the miracle of resurrection there will be no return.

"... Oh. Yes. Say goodbye."


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HP:16 | AC:16 ; T:14 ; FF:12 ; CMD:16 | Fort:+3 ; Ref:+6 ; Will:+4 | Init:+4 ; PER:+7

Rajuna can only watch the older man take the hit. He handled it better than could be expected... or he was in a profound state of shock. The loss was less for the rogue, of course. Roslar's Coffer wasn't his town or his family. Still, Raj understood the pain in a way few people could. His village, his family, and everyone he knew had died in one night as well. The only difference was how they died and the fact that Raj never really got to say goodbye. In those last hours, he tried with his mum but she was delirious from blood loss, grief, and pain. He didn't even know if she really heard him. Raj pushes it aside. Work the problem. Find the solution.

He pats the paladin on the shoulder, sympathetically. "Deep breaths, Damian. Just keep breathing."


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Channel 3/5, Bolstering Touch 6/6, Seize the Initiative 5/6
Spells Remaining:
See Sheet
Spells/Effects Active:
AC 17 T 10 FF 17 | Current HP 24/24| F +4 R +1 W +7 (+1 vs illusion+charm)| Init +0 | Perc +3

Marya just stands in silence. She tries to grasp the enormity of what the psychopomp just said and Raj just repeated, but no matter how much she tries to wrap her mind around it, it keeps slipping out of even the most tenuous grasp. She doesn't try to argue herself out of the truth. She's been through Hilde dying, so she knows there's no point, and she spent too much time in Pharasma's church. It was easier to go numb and cut herself off. Channel it into anger, which she could at least turn into something.

And she is angry. Angry at the psychopomps and their master's uncaring progression of "fate." "Fate" that ordained Aroden's death even if it would plunge Avistan's largest empire into devil-worship and slavery. It was part of why she left Pharasma's church. Everything she was supposed to do there was about trying to make people accept the reality in front of them, even if the reality in front of them is f%$~ing horrible. Everything is supposed to be calm and civil. Everything will work out in the end, after all. There is a natural progression of things that should never be infringed upon. If a devil shows up to claim a child's soul and his paperwork is in order, you let him.

F!@@ the natural order. F!%~ calm and civil. F%$@ paperwork. There is evil in the world, and it's our job to kill it or die trying, kill it before it swallows us all. Order for its own sake is worth nothing. There will be order and calm and civility when we build something worth maintaining. And if that will never happen, and it probably won't, she can at least say she did what she could.

She doesn't say any of that, though. She just narrows her eyes and stares down Umble and Thoot, her lips flat and displeased as she clenches her fists.

"We'll talk to them. We'll do what you ask, and you'll show us the Dead Roads."

Something did this to the people of Roslar's Coffer. Whoever or whatever that is deserves her anger more than anyone or anything. She is going to find out who and show them Iomedae's Justice first hand. Maybe a touch of her own, too.

The Exchange

Human Fighter 1 / Barbarian 2 | HP 33/33 [39/39 Rage] [DR/1] | AC 18 [15 Rage]; Tch 12; FF 16 | F +8; R +2; W +3 | CMB+6; CMD 17 | Speed 40 ft | Init +2 | Heavy Flail: +6 (1d10+4/19-20) | Perc +7

Vlad stands silently for some time, unsure what to say.

So the entire town--wiped out? Perhaps something fell from the heavens. That means Uncle is dead, too. I am still not sure if I am, or not.

He felt a little hollow. His uncle was the closest he had to a father after his own hero father had died in battle.

I am not sure I want to see him--in that state.

He nods at the request. "Show us to the departed--perhaps they will be able to tell us what has befallen Roslar's Coffer."


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"Indeed! Simply convince them to accept their untimely demiserires, then we will guide you on your way home! But not until your task is complete!"

A small valley stretches out beyond the rocky pass. Winding stands of gray trees and tumbledown walls mirror the layout of Roslar’s Coffer, with simple trails in place of roads. Softly glowing figures—some of them with familiar faces—wander about, apparently practicing their daily routines.

The psychopomps escort you to the valley entrance. Thoot shifts impatiently, looking around the horizon. "Well, go on, then. Make with the convinceration," Umble says encouragingly.

This narrow valley has several copses of dead trees, each separated by thorny brush. All the residents of Roslar’s Coffer are here, puzzled but trying to persevere. The Boneyard has created a rough facsimile of Roslar’s Coffer to ease their transition, and the trauma the souls experienced in their mass arrival is enough to blind them to the obvious imperfections of the simulation.

You make your way down into the town. The glowing citizens greet you as you pass, and you hear snippets of conversation:

"Hello! Strange weather we're having, eh?"

"I've been feeling a bit odd since I woke up. Must've been something I ate last night."

"Didja see that skeleton monster that came down from the hills? That thing looked nasty--good thing we were able to scare it away!"

"Ugh... I've got a killer headache..."

A few citizens show obvious signs of stress.

Crossing the bridge into town you see several familiar sights that bring pain to your hearts.

Damian catches sight of Norreth Albo, a halfling priest of Sarenrae of whom he shares feelings for, trying to sketch the landscape with a piece of tree bark.

Feena eyes Father Gregory sits on the ground, staring at the sky in bewilderment. He looks over at Feena, confused and struggling to understand why he can't feel the warmth of Sarenrae's beaming golden light.

Marya spies the dark-haired Konstanze bounding through the square. Her niece catches sight of her and beams a toothy smile as she bounds her way. As she approaches she twirls a ribbon behind her and says "Come play with me!" In the distance she can see Heike, sitting on a bench looking forlorn.

Vlad sees his uncle Arun, the inquisitor of Iomedae, standing in the square with his arms crossed defiantly. He catches sight of Vlad and waves in acknowledgment.

Varryk takes note of his mother Boddika, sitting on the ground with her head hung, weeping.

Rajuna stares on without the attachments that the others feel, no great ties to the town in his recent history. He watches as several dozen children play together around a now massive dead oak tree. Just as he did when he entered town. One of the children waves. "Hey Mister! You sell stuff, right?"


female human sorceress 3 | HP 15/15; THP 0/0; N/L 0/10 | AC 12, TAC 12, FF 10 | F +2, R +4, W +4 | CMB +1, CMD 13 | Init +2 | Per +3 Immolation Aura 3/3rnds | Spells: 1st 6/6

Feena was shocked by what she saw of the "remade" Rossler's Coffer. It seemed almost identical, other than everyone was a ghost, and she walked through it feeling deep sadness. It was really true, everyone but them was dead, and unable to accept it. The whole sight was terrible and the shades all seemed to be having trouble comprehending what was happening in their own way.

It wasn't until she saw Father Gregory that Feena truly understood just how badly the shades were. She saw him sitting there, looking up at the "sun" and not able to feel Sarenrae's blessing as he looked up at the sky. Feena's heart broke at the sight as the man who was her world sat there, dead and bewildered, and she couldn't help but move to him and sit beside him. "Hi Gregory, I'm so glad I found you." Feena looked over at the shade of Gregory beside her with tears in her eyes and asked in a choked voice, "How are you today?"


M Human Paladin of Sarenrae 1/Oracle of Life 2 | HP 27/27 | AC 19/13/16 | F +4, R +3, W +5 | CMB +2, CMD 15 | Scimitar +2 (1d6) | Longbow +5 (1d8) | Init -1 | Perception -1 (Deaf)

If the unending rows of tombstones, the strange sky and the sinister psychopomps wouldn't have convinced Damian that they were indeed no longer on Golarion, then the sight of the barren simulacrum of the town would have done the job. Looking at this ghost of a place makes it difficult to believe that he is not dead himself. He barks out a hollow laugh at the irony - the dead think they are alive, the living think they are dead.

The sight of Norri tears Damian's heart wide open. He had expected to see him, dreaded it and longed for it - all at once. For a few long moments he simply stands and watches the soul of his lover. Because yes, this is definitely a soul and not a living person. He doesn't know how he can tell, but all the little details add up into this unshakable feeling of not-alive. He stifles a sob as it all starts to sink in.

Slowly, he walks towards the halfling and sits down by his side, watching his face. "Norri..."

What does he say? "Norri, remember that time we talked about ghosts?" "That's a beautiful rendition of Pharasma's Boneyard that you have there, Norri"? "Norri, you're actually dead, time to move on"?

Instead, he reaches out a hand to tuck away a fiery curl of hair.


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Father Gregory looks up at Feena, a sad look of confusion on his face. "Feena. I'm so glad to see you. Something isn't quite right. Why can't I feel the warmth? Do you feel it too? Are there storms above that I cannot see?"

* * *

Norri smiles when he takes note of Damian. "Ah, there you are! I was searching everywhere for you and I thought I lost you! I was starting to panic you see, so I thought I'd sit down and make a sketch of that last picnic we had. Do you remember the cheese? It was so delicious."


HP:16 | AC:16 ; T:14 ; FF:12 ; CMD:16 | Fort:+3 ; Ref:+6 ; Will:+4 | Init:+4 ; PER:+7
Boneyard wrote:
He watches as several dozen children play together around a now massive dead oak tree. Just as he did when he entered town. One of the children waves. "Hey Mister! You sell stuff, right?"

Rajuna stiffens his spine and musters a smile and a small wave for the spectral children as he approaches. He would be ending their childhoods - he had no illusions about that. It wouldn't be as horrible as his childhood-ending experience was, but an ending was exactly that... and he'd be delivering the coup de grace.

He sits down wearily at the base of the dead oak, emotionally more than physically spent. He watches the kids play briefly, enjoying the moment. "I do sell stuff." He says as cheerily as he can. "I even do a little magic. But that's no big deal, you do magic too."


Channel 3/5, Bolstering Touch 6/6, Seize the Initiative 5/6
Spells Remaining:
See Sheet
Spells/Effects Active:
AC 17 T 10 FF 17 | Current HP 24/24| F +4 R +1 W +7 (+1 vs illusion+charm)| Init +0 | Perc +3
GM ShadowLord wrote:
Marya spies the dark-haired Konstanze bounding through the square. Her niece catches sight of her and beams a toothy smile as she bounds her way. As she approaches she twirls a ribbon behind her and says "Come play with me!" In the distance she can see Heike, sitting on a bench looking forlorn.

Marya waves at Konstanze, the sight of the girl enough to allow her a slight smile. "Just a minute, dear girl. I need to go talk to your mother." Talking to Heike first would be easier, and if she can get Heike to understand, getting Konstanze to understand would be easier. As she advances towards Heike, Marya removes her other gauntlet and puts her sword and shield away in her scabbard and on her back, respectively. She brushes herself off as much as she can. The more normal she could look, the easier this would go.

They had gone over the basics of talking to people who can't accept a death in seminary, and she had been on this side enough times even during her brief tenure in her own parish to know that there is no easy way to do this. They had also gone over how to talk to spirits of the dead to make them move on The Boneyard. This particular situation never came up though. Not even Reginald thought of that one.

Marya crying beforehand would go to her favor, as letting out pent-up emotions made it less difficult to keep calm and focused in situations like this. She knows she would be breaking down right now if she hadn't already. She takes a seat next to Heike on the bench, leaning forward with her hands clasped in front of her. "Hi, Heike. I need to talk to you about something serious."

The Exchange

Human Fighter 1 / Barbarian 2 | HP 33/33 [39/39 Rage] [DR/1] | AC 18 [15 Rage]; Tch 12; FF 16 | F +8; R +2; W +3 | CMB+6; CMD 17 | Speed 40 ft | Init +2 | Heavy Flail: +6 (1d10+4/19-20) | Perc +7

Vlad waves back at Arun and walks over to him slowly. The weight of the situation seems heavy indeed.

What do you say to someone to convince him he's dead?

"Arun, it is good to see you," he says. "I will not mince words--I will probably not see you again," he says.

He looks so much like Father--I will be saddest not to see my sire in him.


DD | ROTR1 | ROTR2 | II | TG1 | TG2 | JR1 | JR2

The child's eyes widen when Rajuna tells her he is a magician, "You do magic! I can't do magic... Can you show me a trick?"

* * *

Heike gives Marya a wry grin "You, serious, huh? How serious? Where has your mind taken you now, girl?"

When Marya doesn't crack a smile, Heiki wipes the grin from her face and scoots over on the bench closer. "Alright." she says softly, "Talk to me. What's on your mind?"

* * *

Arun looks at Vlad, confused, a stern expression on his face "Oh, will you not now. Shoul I be scared that your heretical ways have taken you down a dark path? I will not always be here to offer you protection Vlad. Do not do something that your father would not approve of."


Channel 3/5, Bolstering Touch 6/6, Seize the Initiative 5/6
Spells Remaining:
See Sheet
Spells/Effects Active:
AC 17 T 10 FF 17 | Current HP 24/24| F +4 R +1 W +7 (+1 vs illusion+charm)| Init +0 | Perc +3
GM ShadowLord wrote:


Heike gives Marya a wry grin "You, serious, huh? How serious? Where has your mind taken you now, girl?"

When Marya doesn't crack a smile, Heiki wipes the grin from her face and scoots over on the bench closer. "Alright." she says softly, "Talk to me. What's on your mind?"

Marya takes a deep breath and then silently prays, crossing herself as Iomedaeans do. (Casts guidance) Marya lets herself feel the moment in her body without reservation or artifice. Brutal honesty wouldn't help anyone, but an earnest, respectful honesty might.

"I'm not going to mince words with you, Heike. You are a smart woman and you deserve better than me disrespecting you by lying or fudging the details. Hells, maybe you've already figured out what's going on. I'm not sure of the details yet, but I know for a fact we are in The Boneyard right now. Something happened--I'm going to find out what--and you died. I'm sorry. A whole lot of people died. I can explain to you the details I know and answer any questions. Nothing but the truth."

Diplomacy (guidance): 1d20 + 7 + 1 ⇒ (9) + 7 + 1 = 17

The Exchange

Human Fighter 1 / Barbarian 2 | HP 33/33 [39/39 Rage] [DR/1] | AC 18 [15 Rage]; Tch 12; FF 16 | F +8; R +2; W +3 | CMB+6; CMD 17 | Speed 40 ft | Init +2 | Heavy Flail: +6 (1d10+4/19-20) | Perc +7
Quote:
Arun looks at Vlad, confused, a stern expression on his face "Oh, will you not now. Shoul I be scared that your heretical ways have taken you down a dark path? I will not always be here to offer you protection Vlad. Do not do something that your father would not approve of."

Vlad shakes his head, trying not to be annoyed at his uncle's continued chastening. "The reason has little to do with me and more to do with you," Vlad says.

"As far as I can tell, last night Roslar's Coffer was wiped off the map. All the town's populace was killed, including you. I am in some state between life and death. We are all in The Boneyard awaiting judgment. Can you not sense something is off?"


HP:16 | AC:16 ; T:14 ; FF:12 ; CMD:16 | Fort:+3 ; Ref:+6 ; Will:+4 | Init:+4 ; PER:+7
Kids in the Boneyard wrote:
The child's eyes widen when Rajuna tells her he is a magician, "You do magic! I can't do magic... Can you show me a trick?"

Rajuna smiles a little sadly and signals more of the kids to come over. "I can. In fact, I'm gonna show you three tricks. I'll do the first two tricks and you are gonna do the third and best one because you are magical. Ready?"

When he's got his audience's attention, he rolls up his sleeves like a carnival magician then holds up his empty hand while the other one holds a dry twig for them to see. "Now watch closely..." He snaps his fingers and the twig bursts into crackling flames.

Cast: Spark


M Human Paladin of Sarenrae 1/Oracle of Life 2 | HP 27/27 | AC 19/13/16 | F +4, R +3, W +5 | CMB +2, CMD 15 | Scimitar +2 (1d6) | Longbow +5 (1d8) | Init -1 | Perception -1 (Deaf)

"Yes, I was lost for a little while." Damian pauses, not sure how to continue. He looks around, seeing Marya on the bench with another woman, all serious and business-like. Rajuna talking to the children. Vlad being scolded by his uncle. Feena with her mentor, the pain clear in her face.

He will not have a tearful parting. He will not.

"The cheese was delicious, that's right. I hear the cheese in Elysium is even more delicious, and this is pretty wild, Norri, but I'm pretty sure that's where you're going now. And I'm really happy for you." He reaches out to take the halfling's hands, squeezing them in his own. "I really am, and I wish I could come with you, but I still have a few things to do, and I'm sure you'll find plenty of fun things to do there while you're waiting for me, huh? There's, there's food and dancing and, and art classes, I know you always wanted to learn from a proper master, and all the best ones are there! And there's lots of sunlight and beautiful landscapes, I'm sure. You will be so happy. You just need to get there, right? I mean, this place is dull and gloomy and there's no proper food or wine anywhere, not even a proper roof."

He swallows hard as he fixes Norri with an intense gaze, wishing with all his heart that the halfling will play along, understand, accept it, move on, don't cling to this old life, don't cling to me, to us, I could not bear it.

Diplomacy, enhanced: 1d20 + 10 ⇒ (14) + 10 = 24


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DD | ROTR1 | ROTR2 | II | TG1 | TG2 | JR1 | JR2

Convincing someone of their fate requires either a diplomacy or knowledge religion check. I will entertain other skills if you have a good argument, but those are the primary two.

Norri stares deep into Damian's eyes, no sign of acknowledgement of the bombshell he just dropped on him evident in his expression. After a few seconds, he smiles. He slowly slides his hand on top of the paladin's and pats it twice. "I thought as much. If it is willed, I am ready. My only pain will be the time we must spend apart and being unable to spend more time with you until then. Goodbyes are hard Damian, but I accept my fate."

"Don't be sad please. I will be fine."

Norri sets down his bark pats the the ground beside him. When Damian sits, Norri curls up and puts his head in Damian's lap and closes his eyes.

* * *

The children cheer at Rajuna's spark. "Do it again!", "WHOA!" and "MAAGGIICCC!" exclaim from their tinny, cheerful voices. "He knows magic!"

* * *

Arun staggers back a step, uneasy, his previous scorn dissolved. "W-What? Boneyard? Why, yes, I feel strange, but I'm not dead. Am I? I... What is this? How can it be?"

* * *

Marya breaks the bad news to Heiki, hoping for the best. Unfortunately however, she doesn't take it very well. Her eyes widen and her breathing quickens. "What?! I've died? No! And Konstanze? Oh please, oh please, not Konstanze? Is she safe?" she blurts out as she leaps to her feet. Reaching out with her hands she grabs Marya by the shoulders and starts to shake her. "Konstanze! You need to keep her safe and protect her!"

As she shakes Marya, panic sets in and her body begins to spasm, flashing briefly between normal form and a ghostly reflection of an undead version of her would look like, the transparency of her skin beginning to fade. "NO!" she screams, her voice growing louder and more shrill with each word. "Nononono. KONSTANZE! KONSTANZE!"


Channel 3/5, Bolstering Touch 6/6, Seize the Initiative 5/6
Spells Remaining:
See Sheet
Spells/Effects Active:
AC 17 T 10 FF 17 | Current HP 24/24| F +4 R +1 W +7 (+1 vs illusion+charm)| Init +0 | Perc +3

Marya is genuinely surprised to see Heike break down. She hasn’t seen her act this way since they first met. She grabs Heike by the shoulders.

”HEIKE. Look at me. LOOK AT ME. Do you want to turn into an undead? Do you want to kill little girls like Konstanze? I know you, and that isn’t you. You are strong. You have always been stronger than me. You are going to be together, but not if you let yourself turn.”

Do I need to roll diplo again or something else? Also, does it seem like her diplo was ineffective?


HP:16 | AC:16 ; T:14 ; FF:12 ; CMD:16 | Fort:+3 ; Ref:+6 ; Will:+4 | Init:+4 ; PER:+7
Pharasma's Rep wrote:
Convincing someone of their fate requires either a diplomacy or knowledge religion check. I will entertain other skills if you have a good argument, but those are the primary two.

I'm good with that but I have a couple questions. I was initially thinking these folks were incorporeal but it sounds like there is - at least - solidity to some of them. Are some solid and others not? Or was I just totally wrong on their being incorporeal?

Kids in the Boneyard wrote:
The children cheer at Rajuna's spark. "Do it again!", "WHOA!" and "MAAGGIICCC!" exclaim from their tinny, cheerful voices. "He knows magic!"

Rajuna laughs and continues sparking twigs and larger branches to their delight, eventually building a modest campfire for the kids. He sits next to it and warms his hands, leading them gently. "Nothin' like a nice fire. Do you like the heat?"


DD | ROTR1 | ROTR2 | II | TG1 | TG2 | JR1 | JR2

Rajuna - They are not quite incorporeal yet.

Marya - You failed the roll, but not bad enough that I would consider it ineffective. You may try again.

Heike responds to Marya's shaking of her shoulders. She looks at her and blinks several times. A smile warms her face and she asks "Marya! What are you doing here? Does it feel cold to you? Have you seen Konstanze around?

* * *

The kids wrap their arms around themselves and generally agree it is a little chilly. "It is winter afterall, mister. We could use the heat to warm up!".

"Yeah! start a fire!" another one shouts while jumping up down.


HP:16 | AC:16 ; T:14 ; FF:12 ; CMD:16 | Fort:+3 ; Ref:+6 ; Will:+4 | Init:+4 ; PER:+7
Pharasma's Rep wrote:
They are not quite incorporeal yet.

OK. I'm going to have to get a bit more creative with my plans. Challenge accepted! :)

Clearly the kids weren't yet aware that the fire's heat wasn't reaching them as it should. Raj couldn't fault them and throws a couple more logs on the fire to get it roaring. "We're friends. Call me Rajuna... and sit a little closer to the fire with me so I can show you my next trick." When the kids settle in, Raj pulls out the little jasper frog he found in the crypt. He shows them the statuette. "See this? It's just a plain old frog statue." He taps it against a branch and off his forehead with a wince and a laugh. "Nothin' special about it... Now, I'm gonna call on the power of the Gods. Watch what happens." He pulls out his well-hidden symbol of Iomedae and taps it against the frog with a few quiet words. The frog glimmers faintly then bursts into a bright glow. He puts the frog down on a stump for the kids to observe more easily. "See, the Gods can make somethin' plain into somethin' special. And special things can glow."

Cast: Light


female human sorceress 3 | HP 15/15; THP 0/0; N/L 0/10 | AC 12, TAC 12, FF 10 | F +2, R +4, W +4 | CMB +1, CMD 13 | Init +2 | Per +3 Immolation Aura 3/3rnds | Spells: 1st 6/6
Shadow wrote:
Father Gregory looks up at Feena, a sad look of confusion on his face. "Feena. I'm so glad to see you. Something isn't quite right. Why can't I feel the warmth? Do you feel it too? Are there storms above that I cannot see?"

Feena had to choke back her tears as she tried to understand how to reply to the question so plaguing the man who was the center of her world. While some might think she loved him, and they would be right, it wasn't in the way many people thought. Gregory was very much the father she had never had, the family she never had, and to lose him now was shattering her heart inside.

Feena held her handout to Gregory and said, "This will be difficult for you to accept, I don't know what all has happened yet myself," she paused and stiffed a sob as she began to speak, "Something terrible happened last night Gregory. While we all slept last night something happened to the town. I don't know what it was exactly but everyone was killed. I understand it was so swift and sudden that no one knew it happened." Tears were streaming openly down her face and Feena had to stop speaking as she began to sob brokenly at what she was losing.


M Human Paladin of Sarenrae 1/Oracle of Life 2 | HP 27/27 | AC 19/13/16 | F +4, R +3, W +5 | CMB +2, CMD 15 | Scimitar +2 (1d6) | Longbow +5 (1d8) | Init -1 | Perception -1 (Deaf)

It's only with a superhuman effort that Damian doesn't start sobbing. There will be time for tears later. Now, he owes it to Norri to make it easy for him, so he just sits there with his lover's head in his lap, gently stroking the red hair and the small shoulder. He will sit like this for as long as he needs to.


DD | ROTR1 | ROTR2 | II | TG1 | TG2 | JR1 | JR2

The kids all sit around the fire and scoot closer. They emit ooohhhs and aaaahhhs at Rajuna's magic tricks, clearly caught up in whatever he was weaving. One of the kids calls out "Can the Gods make me glow?"

* * *

Gregory takes Feena's hand while she speaks, listening to her words. He looks up at the sky and tries to find familiarity in what he sees, looking for Sarenrae's blessing to break through the drab grey above. When it doesn't come he looks down at Feena. With unease in his voice, it cracks a little at the terrible news. "We. Ah. So we are dead then?"

* * *

Norri just lays there as Damian strokes his hair, enjoying the last moments that they would share together.


female human sorceress 3 | HP 15/15; THP 0/0; N/L 0/10 | AC 12, TAC 12, FF 10 | F +2, R +4, W +4 | CMB +1, CMD 13 | Init +2 | Per +3 Immolation Aura 3/3rnds | Spells: 1st 6/6
Gregory wrote:
Gregory takes Feena's hand while she speaks, listening to her words. He looks up at the sky and tries to find familiarity in what he sees, looking for Sarenrae's blessing to break through the drab grey above. When it doesn't come he looks down at Feena. With unease in his voice, it cracks a little at the terrible news. "We. Ah. So we are dead then?"

Feena somehow managed to choke back her sobs for the moment and said, "You are Gregory, and nearly everyone else in town. There were five of us who survived, Marya, Damian, Rajuna, Vlad, and I. We woke in coffins in Rossler's Tomb and had to make our way out again. We met a pair of servitors of Pharasma who tried to help you all but, well," as she had spoken about what they had learned Feena calmed down a bit and placed her free hand over Gregory's where he clasped her's, "they have a very...skeletal appearance, and everyone attacked them. They're a strange pair but they seem to mean well I think. They have asked those of us who survived to help everyone come to terms with what has happened and will show us the way back to the world of the living so we can find who or what did this to everyone and deal with them."

As she was back to the topic of how everyone was dead Feena's eyes began to water again as she held Gregory's spectral hand in her's. Her voice was hoarse as she asked, "Can you help us Gregory? Can you help us get everyone to accept what has happened so they can move on?"

The Exchange

Human Fighter 1 / Barbarian 2 | HP 33/33 [39/39 Rage] [DR/1] | AC 18 [15 Rage]; Tch 12; FF 16 | F +8; R +2; W +3 | CMB+6; CMD 17 | Speed 40 ft | Init +2 | Heavy Flail: +6 (1d10+4/19-20) | Perc +7
Quote:
Arun staggers back a step, uneasy, his previous scorn dissolved. "W-What? Boneyard? Why, yes, I feel strange, but I'm not dead. Am I? I... What is this? How can it be?"

"I do not know how it is done," Vlad responds. "I have never been to the Boneyard, either. But accept your fate--you cannot move on until you realize where you are."

knowledge religion: 1d20 ⇒ 1 I did put 1 rank in knowledge religion, but it's actually pretty funny I'll never know very much about it!


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HP:16 | AC:16 ; T:14 ; FF:12 ; CMD:16 | Fort:+3 ; Ref:+6 ; Will:+4 | Init:+4 ; PER:+7
Kids in the Boneyard wrote:
The kids all sit around the fire and scoot closer. They emit ooohhhs and aaaahhhs at Rajuna's magic tricks, clearly caught up in whatever he was weaving. One of the kids calls out "Can the Gods make me glow?"

Most adults let go of childhood in small degrees, over years. And it isn't really a 'letting go' so much as slowly forgetting it by small degrees. Forgetting the mystery of an ordinary wood where, as a child, they would see a faerie hiding behind every leaf, or had the surety that knot-holes contained treasures, or that a peculiar door-like configuration of trees was a portal to another world... As maturing brains filled with 'facts' like knot-holes are knot-holes and trees forming a door is nothing more than chance, the wonder of childhood fades and is forgotten, set on a shelf to gather dust like a once-prized toy.

But when a childhood is cut short, when the dividing line is carved in blood, that slow fade doesn't occur. Child to Adult are before and after images - both equally clear. For Raj, his childhood is a sharp memory, as real as a book on a shelf. He pulls down the text of his childhood and opens it to speak with these spectral children.

He says conspiratorially, "The thing about parents is they don't always see what's right in front of them. They worry and work so much, they don't see what kids see, do they? They look at this great tree and they think 'tree'. But they don't see that it's a fort, and a friend, and shelter from rain, and the safe base when you play tag, right? They don't see that a tree isn't just a tree." He looks for signs of agreement before pressing on.

He crooks a friendly finger at the boy who asked the question. "That's a great question! Yes, the Gods can make you glow and so much more. There's better stuff than glowing. But here's somethin' your parents aren't seeing yet and maybe some of you missed it too... you all are already glowing. Look closely." He holds his arm next to one of the phantom children's arms. "I'm like the plain old frog or the branch, but look at you guys. You're glowin' like the magicked frog - better than him even!" Raj lets them compare for as long as needed until the majority of them begin to see the difference.

"I didn't do that. I can make a frog glow but I can't make you glow. Only people who can do magic that big are the Gods. I told you, you were special and magical... an' you just proved it." He smiles reassuringly. "You are very special. I bet if you try and really believe it, you can probably float in the air or walk through that tree. You guys wanna try? Take it slow, though. Magic like that takes practice."

I'm hoping my approach here earns me a bonus because my Diplo roll suuucks...
Diplomacy: 1d20 + 3 ⇒ (16) + 3 = 19

FYI - not trying to drag the scene out but baby-steps seems to be the way to go here. I've got one more post in mind and another Diplo roll to conclude it I think, depending on how things go with the kids.


Channel 3/5, Bolstering Touch 6/6, Seize the Initiative 5/6
Spells Remaining:
See Sheet
Spells/Effects Active:
AC 17 T 10 FF 17 | Current HP 24/24| F +4 R +1 W +7 (+1 vs illusion+charm)| Init +0 | Perc +3
"GM ShadowLord wrote:

Marya - You failed the roll, but not bad enough that I would consider it ineffective. You may try again.

Heike responds to Marya's shaking of her shoulders. She looks at her and blinks several times. A smile warms her face and she asks "Marya! What are you doing here? Does it feel cold to you? Have you seen Konstanze around?

Marya stares blankly back at Heike. At least she didn’t turn yet. Maybe she should have taken it slower. Maybe she would be better off talking to Konstanze first. Yes, she could show Heike that Konstanze is okay, and that would make it easier.

”I have seen her. She was having fun playing. I’ll go get her. Just wait a moment. Everything’s going to be okay.”

Marya stands up ands over towards where she saw Konstanze earlier. She can’t help but glance back a few times at Heike, just to make sure she’s okay still. She approaches her and kneels down on the balls of her feet so she could speak more on the little girl’s level.

”Hi, Konstanze. How are you? Did anything interesting happen since I last saw you?”


DD | ROTR1 | ROTR2 | II | TG1 | TG2 | JR1 | JR2

The kids around Rajuna are seemingly taking his approach very well. When he offers to let them try, they all leap to their feet.

Squeezing their eyes tight, they try to "fly". At first nothing happens and they give up, but upon his reassuring words they try again. The second attempt proves worthwhile as the lot of them slowly begin to lift off from the ground. As they do so they open t heir eyes and exclaim "He can fly!."

One of the responds "I can fly!?"

The all shout "WE CAN FLY!"

"We can do magic!!!!!!" they all laugh excitedly.

* * *

Feena give me an arcana or diplomacy roll.

Gregory thinks on Feena's request. He seems like he is not quite ready to take what Feena has said at face value and stammers "I-I don't know Feena. This is an awful lot to try and take in."

"Feena, my dear, are you telling me that the entire town perished in some terrible fashion but yet you are still alive somehow? Why were we killed? All of us, just slaughtered during the night?"

* * *

Vlad's uncle Arun is not very accepting of his fate. He points his finger at Vlad and says "No! I will not accept the fact that I have died! Is this something you have done to us Vlad? How is it you that you have been chosen to live but the rest of the good souls in Roslar's Coffer must perish!"

He shakes his head furiously and as he does so his body seems to fight against what he is being told. For several seconds his skin flashes repeatedly between a pale, ghostly color and a visage of that of a rotting flesh zombie. Throughout this process he screams "NNOO-OOO-OOO!"

The flashing stops and he stares at Vlad confused. He finally says "Vlad my lad, what are you doing here?"

* * *

Konstanze bounces as Marya makes her way to her. "HI!" she beams with a full smile. She leaps into Marya and throws her arms around her, squeezing her. "Did you come to play with me? Come play with me!"

She suddenly remembers she was asked a question. "OH! Uhm. No. Maybe? I don't know? What do you mean? Can we play now?"


female human sorceress 3 | HP 15/15; THP 0/0; N/L 0/10 | AC 12, TAC 12, FF 10 | F +2, R +4, W +4 | CMB +1, CMD 13 | Init +2 | Per +3 Immolation Aura 3/3rnds | Spells: 1st 6/6

diplomacy: 1d20 + 6 ⇒ (10) + 6 = 16
knowledge (arcana): 1d20 + 7 ⇒ (17) + 7 = 24
Deena had tears on her eyes as she nodded, "Yes Gregory you know I would never lie about something so serious. As for why you were all killed and by whom I do not know." She considered what she knew and then said, "I think these...fragments inside those few of us who survived are why we still live and they are thus probably connected to what killed everyone else..." Feena's voice trailed off as another event occurred to her, "that may be why we are resistant to negative energy now also...that makes me think it was something necromantic that caused everyone to die like that. I bet our survival is something that whoever did this didn't count on."


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Channel 3/5, Bolstering Touch 6/6, Seize the Initiative 5/6
Spells Remaining:
See Sheet
Spells/Effects Active:
AC 17 T 10 FF 17 | Current HP 24/24| F +4 R +1 W +7 (+1 vs illusion+charm)| Init +0 | Perc +3

Marya smiles at Konstanze. Whatever happened must have been truly upsetting. Marya says another silent prayer to Iomedae for her guidance before she begins.

"Just a minute, Konnie. I have some news I hope will make you happy. You remember when we were looking at that book of celestial beings with all the pictures? You really loved the one that looked like a woman mixed with a dog. The hound archon. It reminded you of what you looked like on the full moon, the days you weren't allowed to go out, except she could go wherever she wanted all the time and got to be a great hero."

Marya takes a moment to turn her head away and sniffle, wiping her eyes. She smiles, hoping the girl would take the tears as happy ones.

"I told you that if you are a really good girl, someday you might get to be one. I have good news. Look at yourself. Look at the moon. It's full but nothing changed about you. You can run around and play all you want and nobody is going to tell you you have to stay inside. But that's only here, in this place, and it's nice, and bigger than home, but you want to be able to go anywhere, don't you? If you are really good and kind, you can be an archon, too, and then you can go anywhere in the multiverse any time you want. We are in The Boneyard right now. If you keep being really good, you will get to leave here and go to Heaven and be an archon just like you wanted. I know you can do it. I believe in you."

Diplomacy (guidance): 1d20 + 7 + 1 ⇒ (18) + 7 + 1 = 26


HP:16 | AC:16 ; T:14 ; FF:12 ; CMD:16 | Fort:+3 ; Ref:+6 ; Will:+4 | Init:+4 ; PER:+7
Kids in the Boneyard wrote:
"We can do magic!" they all laugh excitedly.

Raj roots the kids on until all of them are floating, if not flying. He waves the children back to the fire. "You are doing great! But, before you go flying off like kites, I need to tell you a couple more things about your magic AND I need to ask a big favor from you. It's important."

When he's got their attention, he continues. "The reason you can do all this magic is because you are spirits. And because you are spirits, you are about to go on a great adventure. I'll try to answer any questions you have about spirits but the important thing to remember is that it's fun. It lets you fly, and that's a good thing, right? I can't tell you about the adventure... but your families and friends are going with you because they are also spirits! So they could fly with you, if they want to. But, you know how we talked about parents not seeing things like you do? Well, some of your parents can't see that they are spirits yet. They think they are just unspecial people - plain frogs. I need your help to show them they are special spirits. It's important because until they see they are special, they won't be able to fly, and you guys won't be able to start your great adventure. So, will you help me talk to your families and show them that you are special spirits and they are too?"

Diplomacy: 1d20 + 3 ⇒ (12) + 3 = 15


DD | ROTR1 | ROTR2 | II | TG1 | TG2 | JR1 | JR2

Gregory puts his hands on Feena's, sorrow evident in his eyes. With a sigh he nods. "I believe you. If this is what is to be, I shall accept my fate. I appreciate you taking the time to come tell me what is happening and to come say goodbye. "

Putting his hands over her he looks her in the eyes and says "Goodbye my little phoenix. May Sarenrae guide your path and allow you to rise from these ashes and spread your wings and fly."

* * *

As Marya starts her explanation, Konstanze's expressoin is one of confusion. Staring up at her as she speaks, her face slowly transforms into a grin that stretches ear to ear. "REALLY! I AM? I CAN? That's AAMAZZZIING!"

Konstanze leaps forward and embraces Marya in a big hug before pecking her cheek with a kiss. "Thanks Auntie-M! I can't wait to tell everyone!"

Releasing the hug, she bounds off to tell her friends what she just learned.

* * *

The kids all cheer "Yeah! We're spirits! We can fly!"

Without many questions, the children thank the magic man and set off on their way to start spreading the news to their friends and family.

Need Vlad to give Arun one more shot and if Marya wants to wrap back around with Heike, now's the time.

* * *

As the party begins to talk with the party members, a female halfling wanders towards the town area with with a look of confusion on her face.

Coral:

You awaken!

All is darkness and cold stone. Although you dimly recall going to sleep last night in the small community of Roslar's Coffer, you awaken in a dark, stone box only a few inches larger than you in each extremely claustrophobic direction. The cool scent of earth surrounds you.

You try to push all the stone around you, but nothing happens. You scream for help, but no one comes.

Time passes.

As panic and fear begin to set in you struggle against the stone with all of your might. Pressing with everything you have the tow-hundred pound stone finally gives way and slides off above you.

Emerging from the stone box you find everything is dark and quiet. Not knowing where you are or how you go here, you dig into your pack and pull out the flint and steel and get a glimpse of the room around you. Finding enough materials to make a torch, you finally can see you are trapped in what appears to be a 10x10 room with a stone sarcophagus and a closed door that looks like a wall.

Pushing the wall segement reveals a secret door, one that has been sealed for a long, long time. As you open it, you see a larger room with six other stone sarcophagi, identical to the one you exited and all recently opened.

As you begin to explore a path through a deserted crypt, room after room empty but with signs of recent combat. Dead bugs, blue creatures and beetles scatter the floor as you call out for help.

Finding no signs of living creatures you make your way up a set of stairs to a second floor where you find a metallic sculpture of an idealized humanoid figure that sparkles with divine luster. Looking at you it asks "Oh. Did you get separated from your group? I thought you all left already. You best hurry upstairs, I think they have already departed the crypt."

Confused and bewildered, the strange metallic creature shushes your questions and urges you upstairs and points out another staircase to yet another level of the crypt above. Climbing these stairs once more you find a large open floor stretching to the east.

Two more strange metallic creatures greet you, confusion in their eyes. One asks "Didn't you all leave already? Why are you still here? Did you come back to pillage!?"

The other silences the first and opens a set of grand double doors that lead out into a strange land that you do not recognize. Once you've left the the tomb, the door shuts and you can hear the sounds of it locking again behind you.

The landscape outside the tomb is bathed in grim moonlight. Dead trees adorn pale, rolling hills, each of which is covered with gravestones that march away to the dark horizon. The moon above is impossibly large and looks down upon you as a glowering skull.

Up ahead and around a bend you can see dozens of people talking around what looks to be Roslar's Coffer's common area, except ... different?

You cautiously make your way towards the group of people, completely confused as if you are dreaming or if this is real...


HP:16 | AC:16 ; T:14 ; FF:12 ; CMD:16 | Fort:+3 ; Ref:+6 ; Will:+4 | Init:+4 ; PER:+7
Kids in the Boneyard wrote:
Without many questions, the children thank the magic man and set off on their way to start spreading the news to their friends and family.

Rajuna blinks at the adaptability of children. Dying in their sleep was clearly an odd mercy. He yells after them. "HEY! There's a raven in a mask and a big boney man going to show up. Their names are Umble and Thoot. They'll guide you on your big adventure so tell your parents NOT to run them off again!"

The rogue puts out the fire, pockets the frog, then heads into town - determined to see how the others are doing. And, with some apprehension, he wants to see if the Tian woman he ran into outside the bathhouse has put the pieces together. On his way, he spies the dazed halfling coming along the road. That isn't remarkable. Many of the dead appear dazed and wander aimlessly. But this one isn't glowing... so, not dead, or something other than dead. Rajuna waits as she approaches, eyeing her cautiously. He greets her as the townsfolk might. "Welcome, stranger. Can I help you?"

Perception: 1d20 + 7 ⇒ (7) + 7 = 14


F Halfling Rog2/Ftr1 | HP 22/22 | AC 19, T 14, FF 16, CMD 15 | Mv 40' | F +5 R +8 W +2, +4 vs fear, Shake it Off | Init +3 | Per +9 (+10 traps) | Active: Triple Time

GM:
Knowledge (Religion): 1d20 + 3 ⇒ (16) + 3 = 19
Good enough to have an idea of where I am and recognize that moon?
Has to be a dream. Maybe I was sick and didn't know it and died in my sleep. But if this really is where I think it is, there wouldn't be all those people from yesterday here with me. They couldn't have all died last night.
What did the Varisian seer say? "There is a priest of Pharasma in Roslar's Coffer. Tall, wearing two rings, with a bad knee. Go there, seek this priest, and you will learn much about life, death, and the paths in between."
Boneyard on my mind, ever since... Salcas...just a dream.

The halfling stops some distance away. She looks around, subtly bouncing on the balls of her feet as if getting ready to run.

She looks hesitant, then as if realizing something she snaps her fingers and approaches. She glances at Rajuna and says politely,
"Maybe. But more likely she can."
Coral approaches Marya and says very matter-of-factly,
"Hi. I'm Coral. I guess this dream is where I learn what that seer meant, and not by finding the Pharasman priest. So, life, death, the paths in between. Bringing the undead back to real life. You probably know all this about me. This is a dream quest, right? So what do I have to do? At least I'm hoping your symbol means that Iomedae has heard me and that you are the dream-quest-giver."


HP:16 | AC:16 ; T:14 ; FF:12 ; CMD:16 | Fort:+3 ; Ref:+6 ; Will:+4 | Init:+4 ; PER:+7

The Varisian raises an eyebrow at the response. Seeing the target of the halfling's interest, Raj chuckles to himself then moves along to find Moon Akechi, the butcher. As he walks, he notes the dead's faces, comparing them to faces he saw yesterday - looking for the missing, those not among the dead.

Not wanting to waste time while looking for a proverbial needle in a haystack, he idly examines the curious bead and frog.

Detect Magic + Spellcraft v DC:? (Bead): 1d20 + 5 ⇒ (18) + 5 = 23
Detect Magic + Spellcraft v DC:? (Frog): 1d20 + 5 ⇒ (4) + 5 = 9

SL - you can fast forward past the Moon Akechi scene. No need to slow down the game. It is just something Raj would check on.


DD | ROTR1 | ROTR2 | II | TG1 | TG2 | JR1 | JR2

Coral - Yep, that's good enough to know where you are.

Rajuna doesn't detect any magic coming from the frog, but definately from the bead. The bead is a single bead of blessing from a lesser strand of prayer beads.

Rajuna looks around for Moon, but initially has no luck finding him. As he searches for him, someone else is seeking out Rajuna. A middle-aged woman wearing green formal attire that one would attribute to one of a position of power, wealth or both. She leaves a group of children and stomps over towards Rajuna, her finger pointed at him angrily. "Are you the one spreading weird rumors and upsetting people?!"


Channel 3/5, Bolstering Touch 6/6, Seize the Initiative 5/6
Spells Remaining:
See Sheet
Spells/Effects Active:
AC 17 T 10 FF 17 | Current HP 24/24| F +4 R +1 W +7 (+1 vs illusion+charm)| Init +0 | Perc +3
Coral of Lastwall wrote:

** spoiler omitted **

The halfling stops some distance away. She looks around, subtly bouncing on the balls of her feet as if getting ready to run.

She looks hesitant, then as if realizing something she snaps her fingers and approaches. She glances at Rajuna and says politely,
"Maybe. But more likely she can."
Coral approaches Marya and says very matter-of-factly,
"Hi. I'm Coral. I guess this dream is where I learn what that seer meant, and not by finding the Pharasman priest. So, life, death, the paths in between. Bringing the undead back to real life. You probably know all this about me. This is a dream quest, right? So what do I have to do? At least I'm hoping your symbol means that Iomedae has heard me and that you are the dream-quest-giver."

Marya grins even as she holds back tears. Konstanze deserved better than this. She hopes that Konstanze gets to come back as some kind of celestial so strong nobody would ever be able to hurt her again. Still thinking about Konstanze and what to say to Heike, Marya jumps at Coral’s interjection, almost drawing her sword reflexively. ”Iomedae’s Sculpted Ass, don’t sneak up on me like—“

Take 10 on heal for 22, which should beplenty to realize Coral is still alive

She listens as Coral talks about dream quests and Pharasmin priests. ”Hi, Coral. I’m Marya. I’m sorry, but this isn’t a dream. We’re in The Boneyard. But I’m not dead, and apparently you aren’t either, and a few of others aren’t either. Just about everyone else is dead. Some weird s&&# is going on.” Marya tilts her head and gives Coral the once-over. ”Where did you come from?”


HP:16 | AC:16 ; T:14 ; FF:12 ; CMD:16 | Fort:+3 ; Ref:+6 ; Will:+4 | Init:+4 ; PER:+7

Sweet! (regarding the bead) Less Sweet! (regarding the upset biddy)

Biddy wrote:
She leaves a group of children and stomps over towards Rajuna, her finger pointed at him angrily. "Are you the one spreading weird rumors and upsetting people?!"

Ah, and here comes the alpha wolf...

Raj matches the biddy's posture, but not her tone. He shows her no deference. His response is measured and quiet. "There are five of us speaking with the townsfolk. The other four I think you know - Feena, Marya, Vlad, and Damian. I'd have to know what 'weird rumors' you heard before I can tell you whether I said them. Though, I would say I have spoken nothing but the truth today. As for upsetting people... at the moment, the only one upset is you. Calm yourself, ma'am, there are children here."

He pointedly looks past the woman to the children, asking solicitously. "Are you guys, a'right? Don't worry."

Are any of these kids the 'flyers' by the tree?


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F Halfling Rog2/Ftr1 | HP 22/22 | AC 19, T 14, FF 16, CMD 15 | Mv 40' | F +5 R +8 W +2, +4 vs fear, Shake it Off | Init +3 | Per +9 (+10 traps) | Active: Triple Time

"Yeah, the Boneyard. I know. Groetus up there, right? Just like I learned. Uh-huh. Not a dream, just alive in the Boneyard."
She sounds skeptical.
"Wait, is this a test of faith or devotion? To tell me I'm in the wrong place? Oh, I guess I have to explain my quest to you. You're probably in my head, but the questing hero states their quest, right? It's just basic politeness.
Okay.
You know about Salcas of course. An okay kid, for a human... aww, who am I kidding, he was the best. Did he really have angelic blood? Easy enough to believe if you think about the history of the Shining Crusade and who settled in Lastwall after the war. And he was brave and handsome and devoted to Iomedae and..."

The halfling sniffles and wipes her eyes.
"And he was kind to me. Never laughed at me or told me I couldn't do anything.
Ahem. Like many kids growing up in Three Pines Ford, we heard the stories of Lastwall, took them to heart, and wanted to grow up to be great heroes. Partly for the adventure and glory and excitement, but also, you know, to help people. To hold back the forces of the Whispering Way. To hold back the orc hordes. To guard the realms of humans and halflings and dwarves and so on. What Lastfolk do. I was the scout in our party. Sometimes the cavalier, but usually scout.
But for him it was not just a dream or a hope or kids playing. It was a calling. He really could do things that nobody else could do. He was Chosen."

She pauses and looks over Marya.
"You aren't actually Iomedae, right? I mean, the cursing could be a good cover. Nobody would suspect it was you.
Well, Iomedae called him, and he answered. Went away for training. He kept saying on visits that my skills were also useful and we'd go adventure together when he was done... But he came back wrong. The Whispering Way got him, I think, or some other undead."

You notice the halfling fidget with a sword-and-sunburst holy symbol as she talks. She closes her eyes, grips it tightly, and whispers a prayer for her friend's soul.
"I probably couldn't have stopped whatever got him. But maybe I could have spotted it, and found a different way to go or helped set a trap or... well, I don't know. Something."
"And that's why I'm here. The thing wearing his... his corpse... it still screams where we trapped it, in the vault under the hill. It uses his voice and begs to be let out. I couldn't take it anymore. I took up a sword, Iomedae and I had some words - well I had words for her anyways - and so this is my quest. To restore my friend. And until I can do that, then I will be the hero he was supposed to be. In my own way, of course. The world needs heroes. I'm not special or chosen or magic, but I'll do what I can."
She looks around.
"A Varisian seer told me to go to Roslar's Coffer and look for a Pharasman priest and then I would learn about death, life, and the paths in between. The priest might have been an irrelevant detail. Seers get those, I think. But coming here to Roslar's Coffer and having this dream will teach me what I need to know."

"And where I came from most recently, well I got to Roslar's Coffer last night and got a bed at an inn. Then I 'woke up' in a sarcophagus, pushed off the lid after a few tries. There was a secret door, then a room with more sarcophagi - six, I think - a talking metallic statue and some other metallic creatures. It was pretty frightening until I came out here and realized the whole dream-quest thing."
This last part of the story she rushes through, deeming it rather trivial. Clearly just some of that weird stuff that happens in dreams - this is the meaningful part here.

"Because maybe I died in my sleep, but really, what are the odds of all these people in Roslar's Coffer dying in their sleep on the same night? That couldn't happen, right?"
There is a quaver of doubt in her voice.

Then she is quiet for a minute and watches Rajuna talking to the angry woman. Do other people have conversations with each other in dreams, or it is always all about you?

The Exchange

Human Fighter 1 / Barbarian 2 | HP 33/33 [39/39 Rage] [DR/1] | AC 18 [15 Rage]; Tch 12; FF 16 | F +8; R +2; W +3 | CMB+6; CMD 17 | Speed 40 ft | Init +2 | Heavy Flail: +6 (1d10+4/19-20) | Perc +7
Quote:

Vlad's uncle Arun is not very accepting of his fate. He points his finger at Vlad and says "No! I will not accept the fact that I have died! Is this something you have done to us Vlad? How is it you that you have been chosen to live but the rest of the good souls in Roslar's Coffer must perish!"

He shakes his head furiously and as he does so his body seems to fight against what he is being told. For several seconds his skin flashes repeatedly between a pale, ghostly color and a visage of that of a rotting flesh zombie. Throughout this process he screams "NNOO-OOO-OOO!"

The flashing stops and he stares at Vlad confused. He finally says "Vlad my lad, what are you doing here?"

Vlad's countenance remains sorrowful as he talks to his uncle. "I do not know why I have been spared and the rest of Roslar's Coffer perished. There are a handful of other survivors. Perhaps I cannot be killed--or perhaps I will not be able to make it back home, either. Maybe my fate will be the same as yours. But you have lived a good life--if you will make your way over that hill, perhaps you will find Father. I am left to my own fate. Fare thee well, Uncle."

knowledge religion: 1d20 ⇒ 18

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