The Precipice and The End of an Age

Game Master TheMightyAtom


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Friday, April 12, 2019
8:00 PM

You are sitting around doing whatever it is you do on a Friday night, when you get a text message from a familiar face:

Berto

Got a job for you. Meet me at Thracie’s.

You recognize the bar by name and head out, getting there in less than 20 minutes. You meet up, grumble out your hellos, and step inside. The place is full of mundanes, but that’s normal: they don’t know the password. You look around the room until your eyes fall on one of the waitresses. You pull her aside and whisper a simple phrase into her ear:

“We’d like a bite of ambrosia.”

She recognizes the phrase instantly and, after delivering the drinks she’s carrying, leads you to a storage closet out of view of the other patrons. She leans forward and whispers something to the door. The words she says sound less like any human language and more like the crackling sound of a campfire, but they have the desired effect as the door opens to reveal a dark void and a pair of eyes peer at you all from the darkness. It says something in language that none you speak, and the woman responds with only a single word: “Thracia”.

The eyes blink twice and the woman steps back. You know the procedure, and eagerly step forward into the darkness, and the moment the door is closed behind you, you feel a pair of arms embrace you, before suddenly evaporating into air, and in front is a new door, this one appearing much older yet far better made than the one you just stepped through. Opening it, you step into a strange and ephemeral bar, surrounded by crystal lights and well-crafted wooden furniture.

The denizens of the bar are varied but not packed: in the center of the room is a quintet of anthropomorphic animals engaged in a drinking contest, while a table over a trio of what appears to be wizards drink cocktails and are engaged in prattle about some magical product they wish they could afford. In the back of the room are a few loners, one of whom, a dark-skinned man covered in tattoos and mostly hidden underneath a grey hoodie, is very clearly refusing to talk to anyone, and anyone who tries walks away looking rather shaken. At the bar itself, a pair of old men drink beers and talk in even tempered voices, while the bartender simply cleans glasses and brings drinks to patrons as they order them.

As you look around the room for Berto, you get another text:

Berto

Something came up. Gonna be late. Be there in approx. 15 minutes.

You roll your eyes, disappointed but not surprised: Berto never shows up on time. Figuring you’ve got time, you pick a table and wait.


Human Mageknight 1 | HP 12/12 | F +4 R +2 W +4 (+1 vs magic) | AC 19 T 16 FF 17 CMD 16 | Init: +2 Per.: +3 SM: +2 | Spell Points 4/4 | Sphere DC 12 | Martial Focus 1/1

"Bloody Berto jerkin' our chain again. So how's ya all been?"


INACTIVE

Alex sits down, picking a chair with a good view of the room. She looks over the other patrons to see if there's anyone there she recognizes.

"Been good, mostly. A little research, a little target practice, same old same old. How 'bout you? Anything going on?"


Human Mageknight 1 | HP 12/12 | F +4 R +2 W +4 (+1 vs magic) | AC 19 T 16 FF 17 CMD 16 | Init: +2 Per.: +3 SM: +2 | Spell Points 4/4 | Sphere DC 12 | Martial Focus 1/1

"Pretty good, can't complain." responds Cillian in his distinctive East London accent.

"Actually, I can complain. I'm bloody bored. I hope dis is a decent job."


M Human Cleric 1 | HP 9/9 | AC 17/12/15 | CMB-1 CMD 11 | F+3 R+2 W+5 | Init +4 | Perc +8 |
Spells:
0: Create Water, Light, Mending | 1st: Blessing of the Watch, Protection from Evil + Shield of Faith |

While he didn't like being rude, Asher couldn't help but stare at the animal people drinking at another table. How could he not? It was like standing inside Dogs Playing Poker. So this was what his life had become.
Still not used to the clandestine side of the world, when Father Anderson had decided upon delving into the mystical wholesale, he had been prepared for the bizarre and the ominous. He was a priest; he dealt well with the ominous. The absurd, on the other hand - that he was less inclined towards.

'And you shall see wonders', sounded Shakespeare in his own quiet mind.

Alex Weir wrote:
"Been good, mostly. A little research, a little target practice, same old same old. How 'bout you? Anything going on?"

Asher finally tore his eyes from the other table.

"Hm? Oh, um, I've kept busy. There's a, uh... bake sale at the parish this weekend. That's had me occupied. It's after mass - I'd love to see you all there, of course..."

The sheer mundanity of the priest's 'civilian' life sounded more ridiculous with every word, especially in the fantastical surroundings, and Asher was painfully aware of this.

"It, uh, all goes to a good cause... A workshop for the homeless... Get them a skill set, help them off the street, you see..." he finished lamely, clearing his throat.

I really don't belong in this world, do I?


INACTIVE

"Eh, Berto's jobs are usually interesting. Once he actually shows up I'm sure you'll be a lot less bored."

Alex turns to the priest, smiling a little to try and put him at ease. Nothing wrong with helping out people down on their luck.

"A bake sale, huh? My mama taught me how to make a mean apple pie. If we're not too busy with this job, I could probably help out a bit."


Human Mageknight 1 | HP 12/12 | F +4 R +2 W +4 (+1 vs magic) | AC 19 T 16 FF 17 CMD 16 | Init: +2 Per.: +3 SM: +2 | Spell Points 4/4 | Sphere DC 12 | Martial Focus 1/1

"Baked goods are righ' up my alley Father. Save some for us yeah?"

Helping the homeless? I like this guy, he's not all talk like old Father Matthews. I'll get my ass down there and buy a bunch of tasty treats.


Vigilante 1 (Werebat Form) | HP 9 | AC: 16, T: 13, FF: 13| Fort: +1, Ref: +5 , Will: +2 | CMD: 12, | Init: +5 | Perception: +4 (+6 at night)| SM: +4

As the others gather in front of the bar to go in, they might notice a small black shape dropping down into an alley down the street a bit. A couple moments later, a slight figure in a black hoodie walks out of the alley and joins them, his hair pure white, his features slight and obscured by the hoodie. They recognize him as the Vigilante persona of Julian and he joins them as they walk in.

As the closet door closes behind them, an observant person might notice that the way the hoodie shapes around Julian's ears changes slightly (werebat shape, +4 to perception). When they settle at the table, Julian says cheerfully, "Pretty good, I guess. Thinking about college, but I'm not sure if my mom can get by without me. A bake sale huh? Got brownies? I love brownies." His mouth turns more serious and he says, "The homeless are so vulnerable, the things I've seen..." sounding introspective at the end.


Fighter 1 | HP 16/16 | AC: 18, T: 14, FF: 14| Fort: +4, Ref: +4, Will: +2 | BAB: +1, CMB: +1, CMD: 15, | Init: +4 | Perception: +7 |

"Probably for the good that the good Father is makin' them. Last time I had a Cockney brownie there was so much weed in the damned thing I saw pink dragons for three days." The tall man walking through the door paused for a moment, considering. "Weird job, that one. Mind, I'll buy munchies. And snacks."

Moving into the bar, mirrored sunglasses scanned the room with professional interest, looking over everyone and running a mental risk assessment based on what could be seen. No hostility, no hostility in a fight - simply scanning to see who was most likely to start one and, more interestingly, who was most likely to win one. They were rarely the same person, after all.

Heading for a stool, Carnival began to say, "Where'-" when his phone chirped. Pulling the device out of a pocket, he looked at the screen. "Answers that question. Berto's late and my phone is still s***." Moving onto the seat he looked around for something to eat. "So a sniper, a brawler, a father, a librarian and an a#@%@%+ walk into a bar. What's the punchline to that joke?"


Male Human Investigator (empiricist) 1 Init +1; Perception +6 (+7 vs. traps); hp 10/10; AC 13/T 11/FF 12; CMD 11; Fort +1; Ref +3; Will +3

Kaleo stays mostly quiet, still absorbing the scene around him, and how an unexpected chemical reaction had somehow led him to this. Noticing everyone else has spoken, Kaleo pipes up.
"I've been doing alright. I figured out a new compound that heals, which should be pretty useful. I still haven't figured out how to get them to work for other people, though."
"I'd be interested in coming by that bake sale sometime, too."


Alex Weir wrote:
Alex sits down, picking a chair with a good view of the room. She looks over the other patrons to see if there's anyone there she recognizes.

A cursory look around the room doesn't reveal anyone who hops out as familiar: the bartender, a short, overweight black man hastily cleaning glasses does remind you a bit of Berto though. Your eyes fall briefly on some of the people sitting at the back of the bar, many of whom look a tad like unsavory characters. You notice one man, his face hidden underneath the hood of a grey hoodie, look at you and then hastily look away. What little you see of him shows him to be dark-skinned, muscular, and covered in tattoos.

Feel free to ask for more details on other people in the room.


Father Asher Anderson wrote:
While he didn't like being rude, Asher couldn't help but stare at the animal people drinking at another table. How could he not? It was like standing inside Dogs Playing Poker. So this was what his life had become.

You study the animal quintet, still engaged in their contest. It appears to be between an enormous panda man and an even larger reptilian. The panda man looks about ready to puke and the reptilian laughs at him, telling him to give up. Flanking the scaled figure are a pair of women (if the hourglass figures are any indication), one a hyena and the other a crow, both of whom cheer him on. On the other side of the table sits a humanoid rat, who you guess would stand around three feet tall if he was standing, and practically asleep against his shoulder is a kobold woman. The rat man seems anxious, and evidently doesn't want to stay for much longer.

A bake sale, huh? That gives me some devious ideas >:)


Julian Jacobs wrote:
As the closet door closes behind them, an observant person might notice that the way the hoodie shapes around Julian's ears changes slightly (werebat shape, +4 to perception).

If you'd like, you can tell which conversations you'd like to eavesdrop on. Besides the animal group partying in the center of the bar, there's also the wizard trio sitting a table over and the veterans talking to each other at the bar.


Carnival. wrote:
Moving into the bar, mirrored sunglasses scanned the room with professional interest, looking over everyone and running a mental risk assessment based on what could be seen. No hostility, no hostility in a fight - simply scanning to see who was most likely to start one and, more interestingly, who was most likely to win one. They were rarely the same person, after all.

Looking around, you find the place pretty boring. Hardly a bar if no one's ready to brawl, right? Still, even a passing glance let's you know that the animal folks would probably jump up first (half of them are plastered, and the panda man looks ready to drop). The veterans (just a guess, based on their dress and attitudes) are almost certainly packing heat, and you get a weird vibe from half of the people sitting in the back, especially that guy in the hoodie. Something weird about him, like he's watching everyone.

If you want more details about the people you're seeing, just ask.


Vigilante 1 (Werebat Form) | HP 9 | AC: 16, T: 13, FF: 13| Fort: +1, Ref: +5 , Will: +2 | CMD: 12, | Init: +5 | Perception: +4 (+6 at night)| SM: +4

Julian lounges back and it looks like he disengages from the conversation for a moment, staring off into the distance, but his ear points toward the two older men at the bar, listening to pick up anything of note, his interest piqued because of their mundane appearance.

As Carnival starts his joke, his attention swings back to him with a furrowed brow and he says stress evident in his voice, "Come on man, I told you guys not to talk about my day job while we are in public."


M Human Cleric 1 | HP 9/9 | AC 17/12/15 | CMB-1 CMD 11 | F+3 R+2 W+5 | Init +4 | Perc +8 |
Spells:
0: Create Water, Light, Mending | 1st: Blessing of the Watch, Protection from Evil + Shield of Faith |
TheMightyAtom wrote:
A bake sale, huh? That gives me some devious ideas >:)

Oh me, oh my.

While he had initially felt foolish in bringing up something as banal as everyday church affairs, Asher was pleasantly surprised at his teammates' positive responses. It seemed no one, not even the hardened mercenaries of the Riot Crew, was above a chocolate frosted cupcake. It was oddly humanizing.

Of course, the priest chided himself, he had been wrong to expect anything else. Still not used to the mystical, Asher sometimes forgot that despite their fantastical abilities the Riot Crew consisted of mere mortals, just as much part of the 'normal' world as himself and all equal in God's eyes. Even the panda man currently puking up what had to be several pints of lager was part of the ineffable plan, and with this in mind Asher smiled and visibly calmed down. This otherworldly setting should not unnerve him. God's creatures were myriad and manifold, and it was his privilege to aide and guide them when required, not to judge them.

Except maybe Carnival's ability to swallow cheeseburgers whole. That was most definitely not God's design and should absolutely be judged. It was positively unholy.

"Your patronage would be very much appreciated," he smiled to the table, "as would any contribution you offered," he added to Alex in particular, at her offer of baking an apple pie.

They would certainly liven up the crowd. Heh.

Kaleo Green wrote:
"I figured out a new compound that heals, which should be pretty useful. I still haven't figured out how to get them to work for other people, though."

"Why, that's fantastic, Kaleo. If that could be applied to others... what a world we'd live in."

A mixture that could heal the sick instantly? What a triumph. And what an utter tragedy. Asher often dismayed at the secrecy that dominated the magical world. If people like Kaleo Green were allowed to work their craft freely, it would revolutionize medicine overnight - it would help millions. Instead he had to operate under the greatest secrecy, beholden to shadowy power brokers. It wasn't right - not towards him, nor to the world at large.

Asher sighed and let his sharp eyes absorb the room. Anything to distract him from the somber thoughts.

Perception: 1d20 + 8 ⇒ (16) + 8 = 24

Seemed like you were fishing for some Perception checks, Atom, so here you go.


INACTIVE

Alex snorts at Carnival's attempt at humor. "You forgot the investigator" she murmurs under her breath.

A bit louder, "I'm pretty sure we are the punchline, given that none of us had anything better to do on a Friday night."

As her eyes roam the room, she notices a dark-skinned man in a grey hoodie. He seemed oddly jumpy compared to the usual crowd.

Could be nothing. A kid here for the first time and freaking out a bit. Maybe someone waiting for a contact, that was common enough. You're probably just being paranoid.

Still, he was acting strange, and Alex didn't like strange. Her eyes narrow as she studies the man more closely.

Alex is using Studied Target against Mr. Grey Hoodie to get a +1 bonus on Bluff, Knowledge, Perception, Sense Motive, Survival, attack and damage rolls.

Perception to look for more details:

Perception: 1d20 + 6 ⇒ (14) + 6 = 20


Human Mageknight 1 | HP 12/12 | F +4 R +2 W +4 (+1 vs magic) | AC 19 T 16 FF 17 CMD 16 | Init: +2 Per.: +3 SM: +2 | Spell Points 4/4 | Sphere DC 12 | Martial Focus 1/1

Cillian's eyes slide right over the anthropomorphs, stop knowingly for a bit on the fellow veterans, then fix on the shifty hoodied guy.

People's people, no matter their shape. And Vet's will always look a bit off, hell's I know I do. But that guy looks shifty, and shifty ain't a look I like in a crowded bar full of packing drunks.

Cillian idly fingers his pistol under the table as he takes a surreptitious but studious look at the man.

Perception: 1d20 + 3 ⇒ (15) + 3 = 18


Fighter 1 | HP 16/16 | AC: 18, T: 14, FF: 14| Fort: +4, Ref: +4, Will: +2 | BAB: +1, CMB: +1, CMD: 15, | Init: +4 | Perception: +7 |

"Gotcha. Don't use the L word. From now on I shall refer to you only as a Professional Word Wrangler." Looking at the menu he added to Alex, "In my defence, the Investigator hadn't arrived at that point. So, a sniper, a brawler, a father, a professional word wrangler, a investigator and an a****** walk into a bar. The punchline is, of course, Berto, because he's late. And he gets the tab." He paused, and added, "Although, yeah, we'd be an acceptable second choice."

He eyed the patrons of the bar behind his glasses for a moment, but none of them seemed terribly inclined to start a fight, and he wasn't terribly inclined to either. Whatever they were doing would probably be best done without blood on his suit. Not that you could see the blood on it, not really. It was one of the reasons he wore it. But it was still best not to get too much on it in case the dry cleaners got angry again.

Still, he did check out the vet brigade and grey hoodie a little more. He wasn't overly fond of people with guns who might point them at him, and he wasn't sure what to make of the hoodie. It was a sensible bit of clothing, sure, but a lot of people liked to use it to hide something.

Perception: 1d20 + 7 ⇒ (4) + 7 = 11


Human Mageknight 1 | HP 12/12 | F +4 R +2 W +4 (+1 vs magic) | AC 19 T 16 FF 17 CMD 16 | Init: +2 Per.: +3 SM: +2 | Spell Points 4/4 | Sphere DC 12 | Martial Focus 1/1

"'e'd better get the tab or 'e'll be first in my punchline, HAH!" Cillian wheezes out a laugh, still watching the hoodied man.


Vigilante 1 (Werebat Form) | HP 9 | AC: 16, T: 13, FF: 13| Fort: +1, Ref: +5 , Will: +2 | CMD: 12, | Init: +5 | Perception: +4 (+6 at night)| SM: +4

Julian laughs at "Professional Word Wrangler" good-naturedly and says quietly, "Oh, that reminds me! I need a name! You know? A code name?" He sounds excited and eagerly awaits your ideas.

For eavesdropping...
Perception: 1d20 + 4 + 4 ⇒ (16) + 4 + 4 = 24


Human Mageknight 1 | HP 12/12 | F +4 R +2 W +4 (+1 vs magic) | AC 19 T 16 FF 17 CMD 16 | Init: +2 Per.: +3 SM: +2 | Spell Points 4/4 | Sphere DC 12 | Martial Focus 1/1

"Ya got that fancy hearing hardware going on right? What about 'Sonar'? Or 'The Echo'?"


Fighter 1 | HP 16/16 | AC: 18, T: 14, FF: 14| Fort: +4, Ref: +4, Will: +2 | BAB: +1, CMB: +1, CMD: 15, | Init: +4 | Perception: +7 |

"We're using codenames now?" Carnival asked, somehow managing to look wide-eyed and innocent despite his mirrored glasses.


INACTIVE

Distracted by the man in the hoodie, Alex is only half-following the conversation. Still, she's vaguely aware that Julian is asking for code names. Trying to be helpful, she says the first thing that comes to mind.

"How about Batman?"

...Crap. She hadn't been intending to make a pop culture reference. It had just been the first somewhat-applicable name to pop into her head. Now she could either admit that and sound like even more of an idiot or double-down and pretend this was what she'd intended all along.

"I mean, you've got the whole dark knight vigilante thing going for you. And you're literally a bat. So...it makes sense..." Alex trails off awkwardly.

I am never going to live this one down.


Vigilante 1 (Werebat Form) | HP 9 | AC: 16, T: 13, FF: 13| Fort: +1, Ref: +5 , Will: +2 | CMD: 12, | Init: +5 | Perception: +4 (+6 at night)| SM: +4

Julian lights up when Breach mentions The Echo, ”Oh I like that. Hmm, maybe just Echo.” but when Alex says Batman he inhales through his teeth, winces and says, ”Yeah, appropriate, but already taken in afraid.” Julian shrugs and takes a drink. ”Berto SHOULd cover the tab right? It’s only considerate since he’s late.”


M Human Cleric 1 | HP 9/9 | AC 17/12/15 | CMB-1 CMD 11 | F+3 R+2 W+5 | Init +4 | Perc +8 |
Spells:
0: Create Water, Light, Mending | 1st: Blessing of the Watch, Protection from Evil + Shield of Faith |
Alex Weir wrote:
"How about Batman?"

Ding ding ding.

Asher had to wonder: was any alias Julian decided upon not doomed to fail? How could it possibly catch on? The young man wanted to create a bat themed vigilante persona, in a world where the most popular fictional hero for the last several decades, to the point of rising to the status of modern myth, was a bat themed vigilante; comparisons to the caped crusader were inevitable. Like it or not, Julian would in all likelihood be known as the real-life Batman.

Still, the plea for suggestion had been genuine and the priest wanted to give a sincere answer, and so he furrowed his hairless brow in thought for a few seconds.

'On the bat's back I do fly'...

The quote flew its way to his mind as gently as the bloodsuckers themselves.

"'Ariel', perhaps?"

Seeing that the name evoked no enthusiasm, Asher immediately realized why.

"Oh, right, the name was appropriated for a, uh, Disney princess. Yes. Maybe not appropriate then. Sorry. I was alluding to the spirit from The Tempest - Shakespeare describes him as riding on the back of a bat."

The priest's brow once again furrowed in thought.

"Then again, perhaps the name could reclaim its masculine form in something like 'Aerial'. Which, come to think of it, also doubles as a noun - one that describes you fairly too, at that."

'Aerial': literary allusion, descriptive noun, thematically appropriate, highlights Julian's gift of flight... Asher found himself unexpectedly pleased at the suggestion. It appealed to his scholarly sensibilities.


Male Human Investigator (empiricist) 1 Init +1; Perception +6 (+7 vs. traps); hp 10/10; AC 13/T 11/FF 12; CMD 11; Fort +1; Ref +3; Will +3

"I imagine if Berto is always late, he's likely used to picking up the tab."
At Julian's mention of a name, Kaleo looks somewhat puzzled.
"I... wasn't aware that codenames were important. Echo sounds great for you, though."


Fighter 1 | HP 16/16 | AC: 18, T: 14, FF: 14| Fort: +4, Ref: +4, Will: +2 | BAB: +1, CMB: +1, CMD: 15, | Init: +4 | Perception: +7 |

"Dunno if he's used to it, but if he makes me wait much longer he's paying for my burger." Considering, Carnival added, "Code names are one of those thin's. Sometimes they're real important, like, especially if you're workin' with some shady types. Other times its just somethin' to stick in the books so if them who go 'oink, oink, where's me bribe?' take a peek at the files we cannae end up neck deep." Shrugging, he added, "And then there's me."


A look at “hoodie guy” reveals more about him despite his outfit. It’s clear that, though he’s not very tall, he’s athletic, and his dark skin reveals a few permanent knicks where he’d clearly been roughed up. Most telling though, are the tattoos. They’re not uniform, but done in many different styles and by many different artists. In spite of this, none of them form an image: all are either characters ore geometric shapes.

His behavior also becomes more clear the longer he’s looked at. He looks around the room, not focusing on any one person for too long, before looking at his phone briefly, then doing it again. He’s waiting for something. His movements are smooth and concise, not erratic or jumpy like one might expect.

Two things mark him as peculiar. First, no one in the bar is willing to sit next to him, and all of the guys sitting in the back of the bar keep looking at him, like they expect him to do something. The other oddity? Whenever he looks around the room, his eyes always stop on Alex, and he looks at her for just a split second longer than he looks at everyone else.


A listen in on the vets doesn’t reveal anything too shocking. Both simply talk about their experiences in the field. Granted, that usually doesn’t entail fight witches in Vietnam or having a suicide bomber stand back up after he’s already blown himself up, but you can’t be too surprised, being where you are.

Eventually, it starts to become clear that the two men are waiting for a man named Albert, who they expect to show up any minute. One jokes about it, saying ”You know Albert. Dumb bastard could lost walking across a football field!” illiciting laughter from his friend.


”What about Alucard?” You hear a slurred voice call out to you a table over. You turn to see the hyena chick has turned to face your table, and is giving you a quizzical look. Before she can get another word out, her friend the crow interrupts her. ”No way, dude!” she begins. ”That’s the name of an anime character, I told you that this morning!”

Both women immediately start bickering, evidently over some argument had earlier in the day. The reptilian man smiles and laughs while the rat man just facepalms. In the background, you see the wizard trio all doing their best not to laugh at the situation.


Human Mageknight 1 | HP 12/12 | F +4 R +2 W +4 (+1 vs magic) | AC 19 T 16 FF 17 CMD 16 | Init: +2 Per.: +3 SM: +2 | Spell Points 4/4 | Sphere DC 12 | Martial Focus 1/1

"I did say I was bored. Let me know when Berto shows 'is ugly mug, I'mma poke tha f~*@in' bear." Cillian stands up, all 6'8" of him, and strides over to the hoodied man.

"I ain't seen you here before bruv. What's ya story?" he says, as he pulls out a chair, spins it around and sits down on it, leaning forward onto the backrest and taking a swig of his beer.


INACTIVE

Alex frowns a little as she studies the tattooed man. On closer inspection what she'd originally thought was "jumpiness in general" seemed to be specifically related to her, somehow. He definitely wasn't just an overwhelmed kid.

He keeps looking at me. Why? I've never seen him before, and with those tattoos I'm pretty sure I'd remember if I had.

There was still a mostly-innocent explanation. Looking around, then at his phone...yeah, that was the behavior of someone waiting for a contact. Paying closer attention to her than the other patrons? Also not that unusual. Alex was fairly average in the looks department, but she did seem to be the only woman in the bar not sprouting fur or feathers. That would be enough for some guys.

But he wasn't acting like a typical horny drunk. He didn't seem to be drunk at all.

I really don't like this.

Cillian apparently didn't like it either. With the complete lack of subtlety you'd expect from a guy nicknamed "Breach," he simply walks over to the guy, sits down, and starts talking.

Well, that could be a distraction if nothing else. "I'm going to go grab a drink" she tells the rest of the group, then walks to the side of the bar. From there she can catch the bartender's attention while still keeping Cillian and the weird guy in her peripheral vision. Just in case.

When the bartender walks over, she smiles at him. "Just a water, please, and maybe some info." Lowering her voice, she inclines her head towards the back of the bar. "The guy in the hoodie. How long has he been here? Any idea what's going on with him?"

Assuming diplomacy would be the roll, if one is needed

Diplomacy: 1d20 + 4 ⇒ (12) + 4 = 16


Male Human Investigator (empiricist) 1 Init +1; Perception +6 (+7 vs. traps); hp 10/10; AC 13/T 11/FF 12; CMD 11; Fort +1; Ref +3; Will +3

Everyone here seems to be waiting for someone, or perhaps waiting for someone to do something... Is this what it's normally like?
Kaleo waits at the table, but keeps and eye and an ear on Breach's conversation.
Perception or Sense motive, whichever is applicable: 1d20 + 6 ⇒ (19) + 6 = 25


Vigilante 1 (Werebat Form) | HP 9 | AC: 16, T: 13, FF: 13| Fort: +1, Ref: +5 , Will: +2 | CMD: 12, | Init: +5 | Perception: +4 (+6 at night)| SM: +4

Julian sits back, watching Alex and Breach do their thing. As he watches them, he says quietly to Carnival, Father Asher and Kaleo without looking at them, ”Something about this seem fishy to you guys or am I just feeling jumpy?” Hood still up, the folds around his ears change again and his nose becomes blunt and slightly bat like (loose +4 to Perception and gain scent 30 ft). Julian sniffs the air to see if he notices any interesting smells other than the pack of anthropomorphs.


Fighter 1 | HP 16/16 | AC: 18, T: 14, FF: 14| Fort: +4, Ref: +4, Will: +2 | BAB: +1, CMB: +1, CMD: 15, | Init: +4 | Perception: +7 |

"Like heading along the pier for chips. Proper chips. Not fries. With, you know, haddock or cod. In batter and deep fried." Carnival sighed longingly for the deep fried produce of his homeland. "I'm hungry. Also, yeah, they're shifty as f***."


Cillian "Breach" Gibson wrote:

"I did say I was bored. Let me know when Berto shows 'is ugly mug, I'mma poke tha f@%~in' bear." Cillian stands up, all 6'8" of him, and strides over to the hoodied man.

"I ain't seen you here before bruv. What's ya story?" he says, as he pulls out a chair, spins it around and sits down on it, leaning forward onto the backrest and taking a swig of his beer.

As you get closer to him, two more things stand out about Hoodie. First, it's clear that he's wearing some kind of mask (Like this only solid black), which he keeps having to lift slightly in order to enjoy his drink, apparently a margarita. The second thing is more subtle, enough that you might not notice it unless you're looking for it: no matter how he moves, the lights overhead never illuminate him. It's as if he's sitting in a permanent shadow.

Hoodie doesn't seem to acknowledge your presence, looking at his phone (now that you're closer you can see that he's apparently using it to check the time), then peering over your shoulder to check the door, before his eyes briefly fall on you as he does his visual check around the room, before sitting back down again. He remains silent, seemingly ignoring you, before evidently realizing that you're not going to go away, then sighs.

"Now's not a good time to talk." He finally says. His voice is a lot younger than you'd first expect, belonging to someone just past their teen years. He doesn't sound the least bit intimidated or even excited, saying it the same way you might say goodbye to someone. "I'm kind busy right now, so a conversation is going to have to wait."


Alex Weir wrote:

Alex frowns a little as she studies the tattooed man. On closer inspection what she'd originally thought was "jumpiness in general" seemed to be specifically related to her, somehow. He definitely wasn't just an overwhelmed kid.

He keeps looking at me. Why? I've never seen him before, and with those tattoos I'm pretty sure I'd remember if I had.

There was still a mostly-innocent explanation. Looking around, then at his phone...yeah, that was the behavior of someone waiting for a contact. Paying closer attention to her than the other patrons? Also not that unusual. Alex was fairly average in the looks department, but she did seem to be the only woman in the bar not sprouting fur or feathers. That would be enough for some guys.

But he wasn't acting like a typical horny drunk. He didn't seem to be drunk at all.

I really don't like this.

Cillian apparently didn't like it either. With the complete lack of subtlety you'd expect from a guy nicknamed "Breach," he simply walks over to the guy, sits down, and starts talking.

Well, that could be a distraction if nothing else. "I'm going to go grab a drink" she tells the rest of the group, then walks to the side of the bar. From there she can catch the bartender's attention while still keeping Cillian and the weird guy in her peripheral vision. Just in case.

When the bartender walks over, she smiles at him. "Just a water, please, and maybe some info." Lowering her voice, she inclines her head towards the back of the bar. "The guy in the hoodie. How long has he been here? Any idea what's going on with him?"

Assuming diplomacy would be the roll, if one is needed

[dice=Diplomacy]1d20 + 4

The bartender chuckles lightly. "That's funny," he says, in what is obviously a Boston accent. "Askin' the bartender for a glass of water." Nonetheless, he walks over to the tap and fills you a glass of water. The glass is well made, shaped liked the open mouth of an anaconda.

As you ask about Hoodie, his eyes flick over to him instinctually, then back to you. He lowers his voice slightly as he answers. "Fella came in here about an hour ago. He's not here often, but when he does it's always the same thing: a margarita and a bottle of Selene's Blessing. Then he takes a seat in the back and watches the bar. I don't know jack about him. All I know is that he's quiet, and he must be a badass."

Noticing your expression, he cocks an eyebrow and smiles. "Alright," he says. "Check it. What do you know about the Sons of Hell?"

Knowledge (Local) DC 10:
The Sons of Hell is a local gang, dedicated to selling unique and mystical drugs, and running stolen weapons.


Julian Jacobs wrote:
Julian sits back, watching Alex and Breach do their thing. As he watches them, he says quietly to Carnival, Father Asher and Kaleo without looking at them, ”Something about this seem fishy to you guys or am I just feeling jumpy?” Hood still up, the folds around his ears change again and his nose becomes blunt and slightly bat like (loose +4 to Perception and gain scent 30 ft). Julian sniffs the air to see if he notices any interesting smells other than the pack of anthropomorphs.

The room smells exactly as you would expect it, various kinds of alcohol, sweaty drunks and the sharp stink of tobacco smoke. A sniff in the direction of the bar leaves you curious, though, as you can’t identify about half of what’s there. Additionally, the young black man among the trio of wizards across the room has a strange smell about him that his friends don’t: The stink of a decomposing body, mixed in with the smell of his sweat.


Human Mageknight 1 | HP 12/12 | F +4 R +2 W +4 (+1 vs magic) | AC 19 T 16 FF 17 CMD 16 | Init: +2 Per.: +3 SM: +2 | Spell Points 4/4 | Sphere DC 12 | Martial Focus 1/1

"Fair enough, I won't bug a man just trying to have a drink. Just think twice about makin' any trouble yeah?" Cillian swings his drink, draining the last of it, and heads back to his companions.

"He's waiting for someone, same as us. Don't seem keen to make trouble right now but I'll be keeping an eye on 'im. Creepy mask tho."


INACTIVE

Knowledge Local: 1d20 + 5 ⇒ (4) + 5 = 9

Alex raises her own eyebrow. ”’Sons of Hell’? I’m afraid I haven’t heard of them. Or ‘Selene’s Blessing’ for that matter. I’m afraid I’m still fairly new in town. I’m going to go out on a limb and say they aren’t the local goth band.”

Come on Alex, you aren’t that new. You should know this.

With a hint of self-deprecation in her voice, she continues. ”So...who are the Sons of Hell, and should I be worried that one of them seems interested in me?

Alex is technically underage. She came to Portland at 19, and she’s been here a little over a year. That probably doesn’t matter in a place like Thracie’s, but she also just isn’t much of one for alcohol. It messes with her aim.


Alex Weir wrote:

[dice=Knowledge Local]1d20 + 5

Alex raises her own eyebrow. ”’Sons of Hell’? I’m afraid I haven’t heard of them. Or ‘Selene’s Blessing’ for that matter. I’m afraid I’m still fairly new in town. I’m going to go out on a limb and say they aren’t the local goth band.”

Come on Alex, you aren’t that new. You should know this.

With a hint of self-deprecation in her voice, she continues. ”So...who are the Sons of Hell, and should I be worried that one of them seems interested in me?

Alex is technically underage. She came to Portland at 19, and she’s been here a little over a year. That probably doesn’t matter in a place like Thracie’s, but she also just isn’t much of one for alcohol. It messes with her aim.

I think it can be justified with the bartender not looking super hard at you. He just finds the idea of someone going to a bar and not getting a drink to be funny.

”What? Slow down love, you’re getting it mixed up!” He says with surprise. ”I’m pretty sure that guy ain’t involved with the Sons. And good thing too, because they’re some nasty mofos. The kind of guys dealing in the most exotic and strange concoctions you can think of. White powder that’ll you breathe fire, take a bullet standing, walk around with demons in hell.” He frowns and shakes his head. ”Nasty stuff, and some nasty guys who deal it.”

”Anyway, about a week ago, there was a group of five of em’, and they all sat in the back and got nice and wasted. So they started messing with a few Legionnaires sitting up front near the bar. Things got said, and then the leader pulls a gun out, so everyone goes for their guns, and I’m thinking ‘Damn, about to be a damn shootout in my bar!’” He smiles, with a look that says he still doesn’t know what to think about it. He points at Hoodie, and says ”And that’s when this guy right here, walks right in the middle of that mess, and says something to the guy who started it. Now I don’t know what he said, but it must’a been serious, because that guy went white as a sheet. Put his gun away and just left.” He finishes and goes back to cleaning. ”I don’t know what guy he works for, but it must be somebody real important, to have pull like that.”


Fighter 1 | HP 16/16 | AC: 18, T: 14, FF: 14| Fort: +4, Ref: +4, Will: +2 | BAB: +1, CMB: +1, CMD: 15, | Init: +4 | Perception: +7 |

"Then I suppose he can relax with his beer and we can relax with our slowly increasin' bar tab, and never the twain shall meet." Carnival shrugged. The Sons of Hell sounded like idiots, and anyone who could talk down idiots without pulling off a limb or two first was probably no one he wanted to mess with. Given the Sons name and that level of fear it was even possible the man was possesed, demonic or one of the hellbound's get like a Tiefling. Or maybe he just had a reputation.

He'd have to keep an eye out for those drugs, though. You didn't get that sort of power without a serious side effect, but occasionally the cost was worth it.

Looking at the others, he asked, "How much do you wanna bet I order the chilli cheese fries and Berto comes waltzing in as soon as I do?"


INACTIVE

Alex smiles at the bartender. "Ah, I understand now. Thanks for clearing that up...and for letting me know about the Sons of Hell. They sound like people I want to steer clear of." Figuring she's gotten as much information as she can right now, she takes her water and walks back to her seat.

"Apparently our creepy friend over there is either a very scary dude or works for one. The bartender says he single-handedly stopped a fight last week between the Sons of Hell and some legionnaires. Just walked right into the middle of the mess and got them all to back down. On the bright side, it sounds like he's not the type to randomly pick a fight."

Seemed like the somewhat-innocent explanation might be the right one. He was here regularly, if not super-often, and the bartender seemed to think he was acting the same as always. If he was paying closer attention to her than anyone else, maybe it really was just because she was female. For now she'd mentally file him under "dangerous, but not my problem."

Carnival wrote:
"How much do you wanna bet I order the chilli cheese fries and Berto comes waltzing in as soon as I do?"

"If that's what it takes to get Berto to show up, I will happily chip in for some fries. Plus then we'll have delicious fries to compensate for this complete waste of our time."


M Human Cleric 1 | HP 9/9 | AC 17/12/15 | CMB-1 CMD 11 | F+3 R+2 W+5 | Init +4 | Perc +8 |
Spells:
0: Create Water, Light, Mending | 1st: Blessing of the Watch, Protection from Evil + Shield of Faith |
Alex Weir wrote:
"Apparently our creepy friend over there is either a very scary dude or works for one. The bartender says he single-handedly stopped a fight last week between the Sons of Hell and..."

Know (local): 1d20 + 1 ⇒ (1) + 1 = 2

Sons of what now?

Asher was fairly sure he'd never heard of the group, nor whether he should have; having spent the last several years in higher education coupled with his inexperience with the occult, had left the priest a tad out of touch with both the normal and the arcane. Still, he inferred enough from Alex. 'Sons of Hell' didn't exactly sound like the name of a book club.

"Hm."

One the one hand the fact that the stranger had stopped a potentially deadly scuffle was a definite mark in his favor, however ominous. On the other hand, Asher was not naive enough to believe that the enemy of one's enemy was necessarily one's friend. But then on Zaphod Beeblebrox's third hand, what the priest did believe in was the presumption of innocence: everyone deserved a chance to prove their goodwill and he wasn't about to hassle a man unduly, no matter how suspicious. 'Let he who is without sin cast the first stone' and all that...

Instead he merely endeavored to keep a watchful eye on the man. Virtue was all well and good, but this was a dangerous world - Asher would never forgive himself if any of his teammates got hurt whilst he could have prevented it.

Sense Motive: 1d20 + 7 ⇒ (15) + 7 = 22

The priest considered himself a fairly good judge of character, but the hooded man was naturally difficult to read with his face obscured. Still, there was no hiding body language.


Vigilante 1 (Werebat Form) | HP 9 | AC: 16, T: 13, FF: 13| Fort: +1, Ref: +5 , Will: +2 | CMD: 12, | Init: +5 | Perception: +4 (+6 at night)| SM: +4

As Breach heads back to the table, Echo (I like the sound of that!) slides his phone out of his pocket on the sly...
Sleight of Hand: 1d20 + 6 ⇒ (10) + 6 = 16
...and glances at the time, sending a quick text to Berto, Hey man, where are you?
and slides his phone back into his pocket.


Fighter 1 | HP 16/16 | AC: 18, T: 14, FF: 14| Fort: +4, Ref: +4, Will: +2 | BAB: +1, CMB: +1, CMD: 15, | Init: +4 | Perception: +7 |

"Then food we shall have," Carnival grinned as he turned to the barkeep. "Can I grab two chilli cheese fries, please, barkeep?" He glanced over at the others. "Anyone else want owt? And do you have takeaway containers?" Just in case.


Vigilante 1 (Werebat Form) | HP 9 | AC: 16, T: 13, FF: 13| Fort: +1, Ref: +5 , Will: +2 | CMD: 12, | Init: +5 | Perception: +4 (+6 at night)| SM: +4

Julian notices the strange stench from the black wizard and straightens up. He glances at the wizard and then back to his table and says quietly, aware that he had been speaking to loudly earlier, "Anyone else get anything hinky off of that younger black wizard? I could have sworn I smelled something strange about him." Julian had been hungry but after smelling that, his stomach turned and he was a bit queasy at the talk of food.


Human Mageknight 1 | HP 12/12 | F +4 R +2 W +4 (+1 vs magic) | AC 19 T 16 FF 17 CMD 16 | Init: +2 Per.: +3 SM: +2 | Spell Points 4/4 | Sphere DC 12 | Martial Focus 1/1

Cillian give a big, unsubtle sniff. "I got nuffin mate, but I reckon your nose is better than mine."

Having done what investigation he is willing to do without being paid, Breach relaxes back in his chair and nurses his beer and the occasional CHIP (bloody americans), waiting for Berto and getting slightly more irate with each passing minute.


Male Human Investigator (empiricist) 1 Init +1; Perception +6 (+7 vs. traps); hp 10/10; AC 13/T 11/FF 12; CMD 11; Fort +1; Ref +3; Will +3

Oops, tried to post earlier in the week but it seems the forum ate it. :/
Know. Local: 1d20 + 8 ⇒ (10) + 8 = 18
"I've heard of the Sons of Hell. They're a gang that deals in weapons and magical drugs, and I'd guess they're not exactly friendly people."
Kaleo grabs a few fries, but otherwise waits patiently for Berto to arrive.

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