#9-07 Salvation of the Sages PbP (Inactive)

Game Master supervillan

MAPS & HANDOUTS


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You have been summoned to the Twisting Garden Lodge in the Thuvian city of Merab.

Whilst you wait for the Venture Captain and your fellow pathfinders, porters bring you cool water, iced lemon tea and thick, grainy Thuvian coffee.

Please post your in-character introductions and physical descriptions.

Scarab Sages

F Dwarf Wizard 10

A thin, sallow dwarf fans herself in the heat and accepts the tea gratefully. Beside her sit a crossbow and a small but sturdy-looking pack. She wears practical clothing and a dark cloak, with many various pouches on her belt.

Starting with spells prepared wrote:


Cantrip: Read Magic, Detect Magic, Open/Close, Spark
L1: True Strike, Feather Fall x2, Magic Missile x2, Hold Portal
L2: See Invisibility, Scorching Ray x2, Protection From Arrows, Spider Climb, Whispering Wind
L3: Tongues, Flame Arrow, Greater Stunning Barrier, Versatile Weapon, Lightning Bolt
L4: Arcane Eye, Ball Lightning, Secure Shelter, Mnemonic Enhancer
L5: Telepathic Bond, Fire Snake

Dark Archive

Active Conditions: Life Link: Zeno, Shield Other: Kiboko, LOH: 14/14 Male Gnome 36007-3 Paladin Holy Light 8/Oracle Life 1 | AC 22 T 12 FF 21 w/SMITE 28 T 18 FF 27 | HP 83/83 | F +14 R +11 W +15 | Init +2 | Acro -3 | Bluff +6 | Dipl +10 | Intim + 6 | Know (rel) + 4 | Ling + 11 | Perc +2

Wearing full plate, weathered and dull, covered partially in a grey hooded greatcoat with crimson lining, a gnome sits across from the dwarf. A pack, greatsword, and bow rest nearby. Feet dangling, a fate gnomes invariably suffer in most of Golarion, the etched symbol of a sword crossing a feathered wing is evident on his breastplate and on a symbol hanging from his neck.

"Know what this is about?", Ahn asks as he takes some water, "Yes, yes, I'm sure we'll learn more when the Venture Captain arrives."

"Where are you all in from? Any great tales of heroic deeds and treasures found?"

Silver Crusade

Male LG Half-Orc Paladin 11 (Oath Against Fiends) | HP 74/74 | AC 24 T 12 FF 24 | CMD 25 (26 vs disarm/sunder) | F: +12, R: +8, W: +12| Init: +0 | Perc: +7, SM: +14 | Speed 30ft |Shirt Reroll: 1/1, Pin: 1/1, +1 on a d20: 1/1, +2 on a Sense Motive: 1/1|Lay on Hands: 7/7, Divine Bond 2/2, Smite Evil 4/4| Spells: 1st 3/3, 2nd 2/2, 3rd 1/1 | *Active:

A heavily-scarred half-orc enters the lodge. His armor--red and black studded leather--shows years of patches. His battered shield has been (somewhat crudely) painted to depict the Dawnflower. Curiously, apart from a spiked gauntlet, he doesn't seem to be armed. He ignores the dwarf, nods at the gnome, and sits down heavily on a bench. "Name's Trokkus," he says in a gravelly voice to no one in particular. "Last mission was in Lastwall. Bastion of Light. You ever heard of a Red Reaver? That old line about the bigger they are holds true."

Grand Lodge

Pal 9, HP92 - AC 24, T 12, FF 23/ F +14, R +10, W +12 (+2vEvil)/ CMD 26, CMB +13/ Per +15(Dk Vis), Init +5, Move 20ft
Ragnar:
Celestial Horse, HP76 - AC 25, T 12, FF 22/ F +10, R +9, W +6/ CMD 26, CMB +13/ Per +5(Dk Vis), Init +2, Move 50ft

A flaxen-haired Ulfen shieldmaiden strides in purposefully, her strong determined jaw slightly softened by a kindly smile, she seems reminiscent of the Valkyries of Ulfen legend.

Her silvery full-plate is adorned with small golden cherubs, close inspection reveals the angelic wings on the tiny creature are all razor sharp. A holy symbol on a silver chain proclaims her as a follower of Ragathiel.

Behind her, a snow white warhorse with almost imperceptible angelic runes in its coat follows lazily, stopping in the garden to admire the flowers.

"Frost. Agent of Ragathiel. That is Ragnar" she looks around carefully, taking in the people around her. "One of the Dawnflowers chosen, and a fellow agent of Ragathiels righteous justice - I am in the right place". She looks to the dwarf with a welcoming glance and pours herself some tea.


As you sip your drinks, a lean sand-coloured dog trots in.

The dog is followed immediately by a tattooed Garundi elf woman in desert garb.

"Aha! I hear our guests have arrived. Well, most of you at least. The remaining Pathfinders will be joining us via teleportation before long. At the Sages' expense! Venture Captain Diya Akan, at your service!"

The elf steps forward, and you notice that her eyes are wholly white and unseeing.

"Tahonikepsu and Amenopheus are waiting for you in the Garden. I'll guide you through the maze; I mainly grew the maze myself, I do hope you enjoy it. Please tell me if the colors are agreeable. I primarily work in scent."

Leading you into the labyrinthine maze of plant-life that gives the Twisting Garden Lodge its name, Diya Akan calls back over her shoulder: "Amenopheus specifically requested that I provide 'scholarly agents.' I am familiar with Agate, the arcane specialist and ancient enthusiast. The rest of you I know by reputation. But why don't you fill me in on your areas of expertise whilst we walk?"

Silver Crusade

Male LG Half-Orc Paladin 11 (Oath Against Fiends) | HP 74/74 | AC 24 T 12 FF 24 | CMD 25 (26 vs disarm/sunder) | F: +12, R: +8, W: +12| Init: +0 | Perc: +7, SM: +14 | Speed 30ft |Shirt Reroll: 1/1, Pin: 1/1, +1 on a d20: 1/1, +2 on a Sense Motive: 1/1|Lay on Hands: 7/7, Divine Bond 2/2, Smite Evil 4/4| Spells: 1st 3/3, 2nd 2/2, 3rd 1/1 | *Active:

"Ain't no one ever call me an expert before," Trokkus growls warmly as he walks. "But I know you don't mean nothin' by it. Only expertise I ever got was how to fight on the wrong side in the 'Wound and get exactly what I had coming to me--a sword in the belly. But the Lady of Light gave me a second chance, bringing me back from the depths and setting me straight. So I ain't gonna let her down. Someday, if I'm worthy, she'll send me back in to push those demons out of this world once and for all."

Scarab Sages

F Dwarf Wizard 10

Agate straightens up and looks nervous at the mention of the Sage leaders.

As the party walks through the maze, she looks over the plants.

Knowledge (Nature): 1d20 + 8 ⇒ (11) + 8 = 19

Grand Lodge

Pal 9, HP92 - AC 24, T 12, FF 23/ F +14, R +10, W +12 (+2vEvil)/ CMD 26, CMB +13/ Per +15(Dk Vis), Init +5, Move 20ft
Ragnar:
Celestial Horse, HP76 - AC 25, T 12, FF 22/ F +10, R +9, W +6/ CMD 26, CMB +13/ Per +5(Dk Vis), Init +2, Move 50ft

"Expertise? I would suggest diplomacy, and diplomacy by other means" she touches the pommel of her sword subtly, but enough to convey the point "I seem to have a path that has taken me to dealing in matters of law and state, and that path has been littered with the undead"

Dark Archive

Active Conditions: Life Link: Zeno, Shield Other: Kiboko, LOH: 14/14 Male Gnome 36007-3 Paladin Holy Light 8/Oracle Life 1 | AC 22 T 12 FF 21 w/SMITE 28 T 18 FF 27 | HP 83/83 | F +14 R +11 W +15 | Init +2 | Acro -3 | Bluff +6 | Dipl +10 | Intim + 6 | Know (rel) + 4 | Ling + 11 | Perc +2

" 'scholarly'!", Ahn exclaims, "I don't know about that. I do spend a great deal of time in the Dark Archive's vaults, but I'm... looking for something rather... specific.

I have, in fact, developed a skill with deciphering texts and have mastered many languages... I have somewhat of a knack for them... but scholarly? I certainly wouldn't call it any serious academic study. Not like I presume this Dwarf must be accustomed to. Agate, you look like the book type."

"My specialty is really supporting folks like this half-orc, and shieldmaiden here...", nodding and acknowledging her worship of Ragathiel, Ahn says, "... may his eyes fall upon us and his wings shield us... let's just say I am his wings upon the battlefield."

Grand Lodge

Pal 9, HP92 - AC 24, T 12, FF 23/ F +14, R +10, W +12 (+2vEvil)/ CMD 26, CMB +13/ Per +15(Dk Vis), Init +5, Move 20ft
Ragnar:
Celestial Horse, HP76 - AC 25, T 12, FF 22/ F +10, R +9, W +6/ CMD 26, CMB +13/ Per +5(Dk Vis), Init +2, Move 50ft

Frost smiles with a warmth that contradicts her name at Ahn's comment "And I shall be his righteous sword"

Grand Lodge

Male LN Oread Occultist 7 / Living Monolith 1 | HP 54/66 | AC 19 T 11 FF 18 | CMB +10, CMD 21 | F: +9, R: +5, W: +10; (+2 vs. negative levels, death effects, and mind-affecting effects) | Init: +1 | Perc: +10 (+12 to notice stonework), SM: +8; Darkvision | Speed 20ft | Mental Focus: Abj.: 1/4; Trans.: 6/6 | Spells: 1st - 4/5, 2nd - 4/4, 3rd - 2/2 | Active conditions: None.

A stalky, roughly dwarven-shaped man appears in among the group, looking slightly bewildered for a moment as he gathers his wits. Only roughly dwarven because his skin looks more like stone than flesh, and instead of hair, he sprouts purple crystals that look similar to amethyst. On his forehead is a fairly ornate scarab that seems to have been magically attached to the skin. His clothes and armor, while well kept, seem to still contain a measure of dust and sand from the roads. Various nicknacks and trinkets hang out of pockets or off of his belt. The only other thing that stands out on him is a well made and particularly shiny heavy flail. "Teleportation," he mutters to himself with a fairly educated timbre to his voice. "The best and worst way to travel."

After a moment, he straightens himself and looks around at those already gathered. "Apologies for the delay, friends. I just arrived back from Osiria, where I went through the pains to receive this little beauty." He points to the scarab with a small measure of pride in his voice.

"But let me introduce myself. I am simply known as Athum of the Five Kings Mountains. Specialist in the occultic and various other oddities."

Silver Crusade

F Half Orc Alchemist 10 Bombs 17/17
Spoiler:
HP83/83 - AC 25, T 16, FF 21/ F +12, R +14, W +7/ CMD 23, Per +14(Dk Vis), Init +4, Move 30ft

You see kind of a slender half orc wearing a heavy duster and with tubes and ampules attached to her body.

"Hello all. Im Peridot pleasure to meet you all. My specialty is medicine and making sure people stay healthy. My secondary specialization is bombs. Healing bombs. Explosive bombs. I know how to make so many different types of bombs ," she says rather plainly.

After contemplating her situation for a little bit she adds,"I am not a Scarab Sage for those of you wondering. My father is a gemologist. He named me after his favorite rock."


The Venture Captain is glad that you are now finally complete.

"Do not underestimate your expertise Pathfinders. Jointly, you will be able to accomplish more than you believe. And this is the time where your aid is truly needed!"

* * *

The Venture Captain leads you through the fragrant, leafy maze to a courtyard. Beneath a pavilion, seated at a table, are the Diamond and Sapphire Sages.

Amenopheus (a late-middle-aged human male wearing a resplendent jeweled turban) looks over a book with a bemused smile as a blindfolded Tahonikepsu (a young Osiriani human female, with violet eyes that betray far greater age) cautiously sniffs at several metal vials bearing the marks of local alchemists.

She confidently names each alchemist by the scent of the vial before adding with a smile, “The scent of blood, oil, and old books could only be our Pathfinder friends. And of course of our own ... Agate.”

Amenopheus smiles at Agate, closes his book and pushes an ancient Azlanti coin over to the Diamond Sage, remarking that he should know better than to wager with dragons and that these games are merely distractions to relieve the tension of a serious situation.

Tahonikepsu rises, removes her blindfold, draws forth a small metal box, and opens it to reveal an onyx gem in the cushioned interior.

“Our situation is actually quite fascinating, though I agree it presents some difficulties. Each of our order’s sage jewels houses the personality and knowledge of its creator. Through field tests and research, Amenopheus has made a remarkable discovery: each of the jewels contains a second and unidentified persona. Your comrades recovered this jewel, and its former bearer knew the source of this anomaly. He can best explain the situation.”


Tahonikepsu intones a rite, and the morning light dims as the spectral image of a bronze-skinned dwarf manifests above the gem. He wears the simple garb of a warrior-monk, but his amulet bearing the ureaus over staff and scepter marks him as an advisor or guardian of the pharaohs.

“Greetings, stewards of knowledge. I am Padrym of Erekrus. I served the pharaohs of old and witnessed with sorrow the decline of a land of wonders. The Diamond Sage has asked me about a shadow within my sage jewel. I know this shadow as Aryana Tahari, an Usij necromancer who served at the court of the Pharaoh of Forgotten Plagues with me. Known to some as the Black Moon, her skill and wisdom were a dark reflection of the virtues of holy Thoth. She knew more of life and death than any living scholar of the time, and her enemies died horribly of exotic afflictions. She vanished from court for a time to her sanctuary beneath the village of Resa, set on a task the pharaoh personally assigned. I can sense her within the gemstone now, and casting back through memory, I feel her presence upon my every thought—perhaps even to my first acceptance into the order of Jeweled Sages.”


Amenopheus worriedly joins in.

“The necromancer’s spirit has stirred recently. It may be that as more sages take up the sage jewels she grows in strength. The Usij are working to speed her awakening. With every passing year there is a growing chance she could seize control of us. While certain desperate measures—” Tahonikepsu frowns and Amenopheus hurriedly continues, “— may not be necessary yet, I have a plan to assemble the sage jewels in this necromancer’s sanctuary. There, in a place tied to her life, we can draw forth these fragments of her mind and safely destroy them with a ritual I have devised.”

Tahonikepsu nods excitedly.

“We can safely remove this annoyance and perhaps discover some wonders this Tahari hid away. Regardless of her flaws, she seems a remarkable scholar. However, our numbers are too few to safely mount such an expedition. The Pathfinders have provided exemplary aid before; please assist us once more in preserving our legacy.”


Perhaps you know something about the Usij Cult?

Knowledge (history OR planes) DC 15:

The Usij are a scattered group of cultists who worship Ahriman and the divs. They do not function as a unified organization, and members range from maniacs seeking destruction to the wicked and power-hungry.

DC 20:

Once, the Usij were more widespread and acted openly, serving in the courts of kings and pharaohs until the Sarenite faith drove them into hiding.

DC 25:

Usij often use their div-granted knowledge and power to infiltrate the halls of power as advisors and sages, earning sufficient trust to then undermine leaders from within, all to bring about death, misery, and destruction.

DC 30:

The Sarenites sanctified the remains of the Usij cultists they slew in order to keep their spirits at rest; invoking Sarenrae in some fashion might aid a person fighting the Usij.

* * *

Perhaps you know something about the Night Plague?

Knowledge (history OR nobility) DC 20:

The Pharaoh of Forgotten Plagues unleashed a terrible disease during his war with the Jistka Imperium that ravaged the Imperium’s leadership.

DC 25:

The Usij captured a Jistkan efreeti commander, transformed him into a ghul infected with the plague, and sent him back to his homeland. The disease specifically targeted the Imperium’s royal bloodline, causing a breakdown in society from which the Imperium never recovered.

DC 30:

There were unconfirmed reports of immunities to the Night Plague, and the pharaoh commanded the Usij to craft a second, more deadly disease.

Scarab Sages

F Dwarf Wizard 10

Knowledge (History), chronicle bonus for checks regarding Osirian history: 1d20 + 15 + 3 ⇒ (1) + 15 + 3 = 19

Knowledge (History), same: 1d20 + 15 + 3 ⇒ (17) + 15 + 3 = 35

"All I know about the Usij is that they worship Ahriman and his divs," says Agate. "I've never had to face any divs myself. The Pharaoh of Forgotten Plagues, though, I've read quite a bit about him. He created the Night Plague during a war with the Jistka Imperium..." (and proceeds to relay the rest of the plague info)

Grand Lodge

Male LN Oread Occultist 7 / Living Monolith 1 | HP 54/66 | AC 19 T 11 FF 18 | CMB +10, CMD 21 | F: +9, R: +5, W: +10; (+2 vs. negative levels, death effects, and mind-affecting effects) | Init: +1 | Perc: +10 (+12 to notice stonework), SM: +8; Darkvision | Speed 20ft | Mental Focus: Abj.: 1/4; Trans.: 6/6 | Spells: 1st - 4/5, 2nd - 4/4, 3rd - 2/2 | Active conditions: None.

Knowledge (history) - Usij: 1d20 + 10 ⇒ (17) + 10 = 27
Knowledge (history) - Night Plague: 1d20 + 10 ⇒ (3) + 10 = 13

Athum adds to Agate's information about the Usij, "They were eventually ousted by the Sarenites as court sages. Since then, they've worked covertly to bring darkness wherever they go."

Grand Lodge

Pal 9, HP92 - AC 24, T 12, FF 23/ F +14, R +10, W +12 (+2vEvil)/ CMD 26, CMB +13/ Per +15(Dk Vis), Init +5, Move 20ft
Ragnar:
Celestial Horse, HP76 - AC 25, T 12, FF 22/ F +10, R +9, W +6/ CMD 26, CMB +13/ Per +5(Dk Vis), Init +2, Move 50ft

Fascinated with the tale, Frost watches on to see where this might go.


This will get more complicated so ask if anything is unclear. :-) So Night Plague is the "terrible disease" referenced, and the DC 30 check that you passed mentions a second, even more deadly but unnamed disease. With some aids you’re also cracking the first DC 30 spoiler so feel free to open that as well.

* *

Amenopheus beams proudly as you reveal your learning (especially at Athum and Agate).

Tahonikepsu nods and says "It seems you managed to find us some scholars after all Diya. Very good."

Amenopheus' smile fades as he thinks about the hidden threat.

He pauses, looking back to Tahonikepsu, and then gives you more information.

"It's true. The spirit of each jewel offers its bearer wisdom and knowledge from the past, but a second voice whispers and drives darker impulses. A thoughtless action or response could nudge one toward more ruthless methods. So far the urges are easily quashed, but they’ve grown more insistent. We must act. My ritual is designed to draw out the malign influence from the jewels - Tahari's influence - and destroy it. We must perform the ritual in a place important to Tahari in life. That is why we will travel to her former stronghold, which we have located in the deep desert. We must leave as soon as we can. With every day, every hour that passes, Tahari's voice grows stronger.”

Sovereign Court

Human Male UC Monk 1/Pal 6 | HP 44/53 (0 nl, 0 temp)| AC 23 T 18 FF 17 | CMB +13, CMD 31 | F: +14, R: +11, W: +11 | Init: +4 | Perc: +9, SM: +4, Dipl +8 | Speed 30 | ER Fire/Cold (4) Rest (3), Immune: Disease, Fear* (*+4 to allies within 10 feet) | Spells: 1(2/2) LOH: 5/7 (3d6) Smite 2/2 Active conditions: 10 ft reach, Mage Armor

The door swings open, loudly disturbing the intellectual conversation happening within. Stepping into the room is a physical specimen of a human, standing almost 20 hands high. A white cloak, trimmed in blue hangs behind him- but he wears no armor or vestments beyond the blue silk robes underneath. Displayed prominently on the left breast of the cloak is the Hand of Irori. Two kamas, attached by a simple silver chain, hang from his belt.

His curly, golden hair, draws your attention- as does his vibrant and friendly smile. The moment passes quickly, and he steps into the room and up to the conversation.

"Did I make it to the right place? Master Zey had me running all over that tapestry, not 24 hours ago. Got back, and the dude rushed me right out the door and on my way here... something about needing another strong back? First time teleporting and everything, man. Pretty gnarly way to travel! So... uh... what was it that I missed?"

Ischell is SOOOO out of place here, and I love it!


Venture Captain Diya‘s eyes are closed but she seems to recognise Ischell.

”Welcome Ischell, late but not too late! Please join your fellow Paladins and Scholars to fight a great evil! Let me summarise the objectives ... “

Please read through the thread. :-)

Dark Archive

Active Conditions: Life Link: Zeno, Shield Other: Kiboko, LOH: 14/14 Male Gnome 36007-3 Paladin Holy Light 8/Oracle Life 1 | AC 22 T 12 FF 21 w/SMITE 28 T 18 FF 27 | HP 83/83 | F +14 R +11 W +15 | Init +2 | Acro -3 | Bluff +6 | Dipl +10 | Intim + 6 | Know (rel) + 4 | Ling + 11 | Perc +2

Know Religion: 1d20 + 4 ⇒ (7) + 4 = 11

This is all new to Ahn, so he listens intently. Then, rattles off a few questions.

"I've been busy elsewhere so I have many questions, it seems I am not privy to all that has been going on... how many sage jewels are there? How many are in our possession and how many are elsewhere? As far as these gems..." Right about then Ischell comes bursting through the doors.

Ahn looks up and waits, an eyebrow slowly raising. In response to Ischell's question, Ahn continues, "You say there's a shadow... a second presence in each... is that a piece of Aryana Tahari in each, or is there a different second presence in each stone. You said that we need to 'draw out the influence from the jewels - Tahari's influence'... that suggests she's in all of them?"

"And when you say that they are trying to seize control of 'us'... is us the sages? How likely is that to happen while we travel to her sanctuary beneath... the village of Resa was it?"

Ahn lets out a sigh, squinting a little in thought, "I notice too that you let slip 'desperate measures'... what are the desperate measures you speak of? It may be beneficial for us to know so as we don't do something that would prevent that option should it come to that."

Grand Lodge

Pal 9, HP92 - AC 24, T 12, FF 23/ F +14, R +10, W +12 (+2vEvil)/ CMD 26, CMB +13/ Per +15(Dk Vis), Init +5, Move 20ft
Ragnar:
Celestial Horse, HP76 - AC 25, T 12, FF 22/ F +10, R +9, W +6/ CMD 26, CMB +13/ Per +5(Dk Vis), Init +2, Move 50ft

"Tell me more about this ritual? I have been involved in a few rituals now, and not a single one of them was a positive experience - if I never step foot in Magnimar again it will be too soon for my liking"

Silver Crusade

Male LG Half-Orc Paladin 11 (Oath Against Fiends) | HP 74/74 | AC 24 T 12 FF 24 | CMD 25 (26 vs disarm/sunder) | F: +12, R: +8, W: +12| Init: +0 | Perc: +7, SM: +14 | Speed 30ft |Shirt Reroll: 1/1, Pin: 1/1, +1 on a d20: 1/1, +2 on a Sense Motive: 1/1|Lay on Hands: 7/7, Divine Bond 2/2, Smite Evil 4/4| Spells: 1st 3/3, 2nd 2/2, 3rd 1/1 | *Active:

Knowledge (planes): 1d20 + 9 ⇒ (9) + 9 = 18

Knowledge (history): 1d20 + 4 ⇒ (9) + 4 = 13

Trokkus shrugs and speaks with a guttural voice: "Plagues and cultists I understand. Lots of talk, but the mission's simple: go to this Tahari lady's old fortress and put the magic whammy on her. Anything gets in our way, I'll give 'em once chance to step aside and then it's lights out."


Ahnastasios Silvertongue wrote:

"I've been busy elsewhere so I have many questions, it seems I am not privy to all that has been going on... how many sage jewels are there? How many are in our possession and how many are elsewhere? As far as these gems..." Right about then Ischell comes bursting through the doors.

Amenopheus looks at Agate and then at the rest of you.

"The Scarab Sages are intent on recruiting new sages by recovering the lost sage jewels and finding worthy inheritors of that power, as well as securing ancient secrets and disseminating that lore to modern innovators to spark a new golden age of thought and technology. Thus there are more than a dozen sage jewels although we were not able to summon all who carry a sage jewel. You will see the rest of us soon."

Ahnastasios Silvertongue wrote:

Ahn continues, "You say there's a shadow... a second presence in each... is that a piece of Aryana Tahari in each, or is there a different second presence in each stone. You said that we need to 'draw out the influence from the jewels - Tahari's influence'... that suggests she's in all of them?"

"And when you say that they are trying to seize control of 'us'... is us the sages? How likely is that to happen while we travel to her sanctuary beneath... the village of Resa was it?"

Tahonikepsu steps in. "It is only her - Tahari! And we need to purge her essence from the jewels! But do not worry - all who are worthy to inherit a sage jewel are of great power and I cannot imagine that she is able to truly take control of us! Even in Resa her power cannot be that strong after millennia."

Ahnastasios Silvertongue wrote:


Ahn lets out a sigh, squinting a little in thought, "I notice too that you let slip 'desperate measures'... what are the desperate measures you speak of? It may be beneficial for us to know so as we don't do something that would prevent that option should it come to that."
~Frost~ wrote:
"Tell me more about this ritual? I have been involved in a few rituals now, and not a single one of them was a positive experience - if I never step foot in Magnimar again it will be too soon for my liking"

Tahonikepsu continues. "The ritual we are going to conduct will be dangerous and we need to invest all our power to make it successful. If you believe that you are not made for such a task then rather observe us - and do not participate! But if you have knowledge that you can contribute - please do so!"


"If you've no more questions, gather any final supplies you need and meet outside the Lodge in two hours. I'll be transporting us all to Resa." says Tahonikepsu.

Amenopheus then produces a scroll sealed with purple wax stamped with a stylized swirl of smoke flame — one of the symbols associated with the Shadow Lodge.

“One final matter remains. Grandmaster Torch, through disreputable means, now bears the emerald sage jewel. Torch requests the opportunity to contribute to our expedition in person and purify his jewel. He is untrustworthy, but allowing the gem to corrupt him holds its own dangers. He was an ally once; perhaps he could be again. As Pathfinders, you may know him best. Should we invite him to join our expedition?”

The infamous Grandmaster Torch, aka the Emerald Sage, wishes to join you. What do you say?

Frost:
You owe the Grandmaster a debt. Perhaps if you were to help ensure that he gets a place in the expedition that might go some way to paying off your debt? You're not forced to speak for Torch though.

You may all still ask further questions of the Sages as well.

Silver Crusade

Male LG Half-Orc Paladin 11 (Oath Against Fiends) | HP 74/74 | AC 24 T 12 FF 24 | CMD 25 (26 vs disarm/sunder) | F: +12, R: +8, W: +12| Init: +0 | Perc: +7, SM: +14 | Speed 30ft |Shirt Reroll: 1/1, Pin: 1/1, +1 on a d20: 1/1, +2 on a Sense Motive: 1/1|Lay on Hands: 7/7, Divine Bond 2/2, Smite Evil 4/4| Spells: 1st 3/3, 2nd 2/2, 3rd 1/1 | *Active:

"If the Dawnflower can redeem me, she can redeem anyone. I say we give Torch a chance. But if he tries anything, we make him regret it."

Silver Crusade

F Half Orc Alchemist 10 Bombs 17/17
Spoiler:
HP83/83 - AC 25, T 16, FF 21/ F +12, R +14, W +7/ CMD 23, Per +14(Dk Vis), Init +4, Move 30ft

Peridot listened intently to the entire conversation. Upon hearing about the plague her eyes grow big screen she just starts staring at one of her extracts very intently.

" If this plague if as deadly as history says I do not think it will be wise to leave Torch behind. Torch has been an issue in the past but that doesn't mean we should let him be corrupted. He is a man who wants revenge against the society not the sages," she said while continuing to stare at her extract.

" We must be careful. I fear that if she did come up with an incurable disease then this extract might as well be water. ," she sighs and places it back in her pocket.

Grand Lodge

Male LN Oread Occultist 7 / Living Monolith 1 | HP 54/66 | AC 19 T 11 FF 18 | CMB +10, CMD 21 | F: +9, R: +5, W: +10; (+2 vs. negative levels, death effects, and mind-affecting effects) | Init: +1 | Perc: +10 (+12 to notice stonework), SM: +8; Darkvision | Speed 20ft | Mental Focus: Abj.: 1/4; Trans.: 6/6 | Spells: 1st - 4/5, 2nd - 4/4, 3rd - 2/2 | Active conditions: None.

"I've had little dealings with Torch," Athum adds to the conversation, "but that little was not a positive experience. Honestly, I don't trust the man, but I will concede with the group's wishes in this. If nothing else, the emerald sage jewel is far to valuable to leave in his hands unattended."


Padrym, the dwarven spirit of the Onyx sage jewel, listens to the Pathfinders.

“I do not know Torch. But I know Tahari. She was a strange woman who spoke to unseen spectres more than to people. She had some involvement in the developing of the Night Plague. Divs often accompanied her, as they did all the Usij. However, she treated them especially cruelly, and they despised her. You will need all the help you can get.”

"As I said, this necromancer is the shadow in the sage jewels" adds Amenopheus with a nod to Padrym.

"If we wish to preserve the ancient knowledge that resides in the jewels, the necromancer's influence must be purged. As for what Tahari is capable of, anyone who can exist for millennia within the sage jewels themselves is someone of surpassing ability. We truly do not know what we might face in Resa. That is one reason why we ask for the Society's aid ... and also Torch's aid. Hopefully, we can learn more of Tahari when we reach her former stronghold and also purge her influence on Torch."

Dark Archive

Active Conditions: Life Link: Zeno, Shield Other: Kiboko, LOH: 14/14 Male Gnome 36007-3 Paladin Holy Light 8/Oracle Life 1 | AC 22 T 12 FF 21 w/SMITE 28 T 18 FF 27 | HP 83/83 | F +14 R +11 W +15 | Init +2 | Acro -3 | Bluff +6 | Dipl +10 | Intim + 6 | Know (rel) + 4 | Ling + 11 | Perc +2

"What the hades is a Div... sounds like we're likely to encounter some... maybe even convince them to aid us? What can you tell us about the Divs specifically?"

"I'm also concerned with this Night Plague, and other 'exotic afflictions' we may face. Is there any lore on the symptoms? A potential cure? Ways to protect oneself?"

"As for Torch, I have not had ill dealings with him."

Scarab Sages

F Dwarf Wizard 10

Agate looks uncomfortable as she ponders the question. "I've dealt with Torch before. He's not a pleasant man, but he did keep his word. As for contamination... well..."

Agate takes a deep breath. "If Tahari exists in all the Sage Jewels, then, as Ahn says, everyone who's been in contact with them is a threat. That includes me-- the last time I was in Osirion on Society business, my group was touched by the power of the Ruby Sage. Adding one more person who might be contaminated to those who already might be... doesn't seem like raising the risk much."

Agate looks nervously to the Sage leaders and the rest of the party to see how they react.


Tahonikepsu raises an eyebrow.

"Divs are a race of fiends native to Abaddon that exist only to cause harm and destruction. Closely related to daemons and the other fiends of the Outer Sphere, many planar scholars believe them to be descended from the spirits of the first evil genies. These creatures vary in power, yet all have similar traits that link them, such as telepathy, summoning powers, energy immunities and resistances."

She then looks at Agate. "Do not worry. If you are not a Sage Jewel inheritor then you have nothing to fear!"

Amenopheus steps forward.

"We, unfortunately, have no information on the disease! So regarding Torch: We seem to have a consensus. Torch will joins us. I will cast a Sending to inform him. Please, no shooting him." Amenopheus continues "Torch has offered to bring some supplies with him. Potions, wands, scrolls - your choice, pathfinders. Any requests?"

Yes, Torch will bring you consumable supplies! To a maximum value of 1500gp. Make your requests please.

"If you've no more questions, Diya can show you the city's extensive markets. Be back and ready to go in two hours!" declares Tahonikepsu.

Sovereign Court

Human Male UC Monk 1/Pal 6 | HP 44/53 (0 nl, 0 temp)| AC 23 T 18 FF 17 | CMB +13, CMD 31 | F: +14, R: +11, W: +11 | Init: +4 | Perc: +9, SM: +4, Dipl +8 | Speed 30 | ER Fire/Cold (4) Rest (3), Immune: Disease, Fear* (*+4 to allies within 10 feet) | Spells: 1(2/2) LOH: 5/7 (3d6) Smite 2/2 Active conditions: 10 ft reach, Mage Armor

"It is well that the Torch dude should join us. Perhaps he will rediscover the values of pathfinders- the man is certainly lacking those as of our last encounter."

Ischell tries his best to follow the complex series of explanations about magic, jewels, and necromancers- nodding in agreement at what feels like the right times. His additions to the conversation are often vague, and don't necessarily fit exactly what was being talked about.

As the meeting wraps up, he bows towards Tahonikepsu. "Many thanks, man!" and then to the other pathfinders gathered around him. "It is my pleasure to walk along side you dudes. May Irori guide us, each to our own path, as we prepare to leave this place"

He stands back up and a huge smile spreads over his face.

As soon as they get to the doors, leaving the central chamber, his posture relaxes dramatically- his gait shifting to more of a lazy stroll. "Gosh, does everyone have to be so serious? Gotta loosen up man!"

Dark Archive

Active Conditions: Life Link: Zeno, Shield Other: Kiboko, LOH: 14/14 Male Gnome 36007-3 Paladin Holy Light 8/Oracle Life 1 | AC 22 T 12 FF 21 w/SMITE 28 T 18 FF 27 | HP 83/83 | F +14 R +11 W +15 | Init +2 | Acro -3 | Bluff +6 | Dipl +10 | Intim + 6 | Know (rel) + 4 | Ling + 11 | Perc +2

"The Divs concern me... again, maybe we can turn them against her... but if we need to fight them, maybe we need some protection from their summons... maybe some magic of protection from, what, chaos? Evil?", Ahn thinks... trying to remember anything in his studies about Divs... again, Ahn reads through the Dark Archive collections not to gain knowledge, but to find something specific... and it's not about Divs.

Know Planes: 1d20 + 4 ⇒ (5) + 4 = 9 +2 Competence if a Daemen, Demon, or devil (Boon - Day of the Demon 5-14 - Not that it matters.

"... I've just never heard of them. Mass Protection spells, in any case, would be useful",


Amenopheus departs to contact Torch.

Tahonikepsu retrieves the Onyx Sage Jewel and Padrym's spirit returns to the jewel.

"Finish your preparations and be ready to leave in two hours." she says, before following Amenopheus out of the garden.

When you are done with any last minute shopping, you return to the Lodge.

Team, I assume you will come to a consensus in the discussion thread on the items you wish to order or you wish to buy yourself but will continue now.

* * *

In the street outside the Lodge, Tahonikepsu assumes her true form, that of a huge Time Dragon.

Gasps of awe are heard from surprised onlookers.

The dragon's presence is unbelievably impressive ...

"Climb on board!" says the dragon with a tone of respect and expectation at the same time.

"I'll have us at Resa in a few hours!"

Grand Lodge

Pal 9, HP92 - AC 24, T 12, FF 23/ F +14, R +10, W +12 (+2vEvil)/ CMD 26, CMB +13/ Per +15(Dk Vis), Init +5, Move 20ft
Ragnar:
Celestial Horse, HP76 - AC 25, T 12, FF 22/ F +10, R +9, W +6/ CMD 26, CMB +13/ Per +5(Dk Vis), Init +2, Move 50ft

Know planes 1d20 + 5 ⇒ (8) + 5 = 13

"Divs? Not ringing any bells"

***

"One last thing, where exactly are we being transported to? If we are being teleported into the teeth of the enemy, then we need to know beforehand so we may arrive with magic wards in place. If we are being transported to some safe location many miles away from a threat then that is an entirely different matter"


Amenopheus looks at the dragon's huge form and then back at Frost.

"Well, we will have the honor to fly with Tahonikepsu to Resa. I do not believe that we will face immediate danger on the route. What awaits us is obviously uncertain."

Grand Lodge

Pal 9, HP92 - AC 24, T 12, FF 23/ F +14, R +10, W +12 (+2vEvil)/ CMD 26, CMB +13/ Per +15(Dk Vis), Init +5, Move 20ft
Ragnar:
Celestial Horse, HP76 - AC 25, T 12, FF 22/ F +10, R +9, W +6/ CMD 26, CMB +13/ Per +5(Dk Vis), Init +2, Move 50ft

"Good. That should allow us to make observations before going wading into danger, time spent on reconnaissance is seldom wasted"

Silver Crusade

F Half Orc Alchemist 10 Bombs 17/17
Spoiler:
HP83/83 - AC 25, T 16, FF 21/ F +12, R +14, W +7/ CMD 23, Per +14(Dk Vis), Init +4, Move 30ft

"Divs are an odd lot. All I can say is that their tactics are a bit divisive if you ask me ," Peridot days with a slight smirk on her face.

Peridot looks at Tahonikepsu and says," Right. I forgot that your true form is far more impressive and cooler."


Tahonikepsu raises and eyebrow after Peridot's comment but does not answer.

Then, you all climb up on Tahonikepsu's back.

Merab’s citizens shout and point in awe as the huge violet dragon launches into the air, soaring upward until the curvature of the world is visible and then down toward a long stretch of desert south of the Thuvian coast.

As Tahonikepsu approaches over the sands, a small encampment comes into view. She descends, and lands at the encampment. The whole flight takes a little less than four hours.

* * *

At the camp are two figures, who come to greet you.

The first is a Garundi elf woman wearing simple monk's robes and the holy symbol of Irori, Master of Masters. She bows slightly towards you. "I am Dhiara, the Topaz Sage. Thankyou for agreeing to aid us."

The second figure is male, but you cannot place his race nor his origin. His skin is papery and grey, his hair thin and white. He wears fine robes. "And I am Sinuhotep, the Amethyst Sage. Resa lies but a short walk yonder, 'cross the dunes." He indicates the direction with an outstretched arm. His voice is dry and cracking, as though he had not used it for a very long time.

knowledge (religion) DC 21:

Sinuhotep is undead; he is a lich.


Suddenly, another figure approaches from the sky. As he draws nearer, you see he is a man on a flying carpet.

"Torch." says Amenopheus.

Grandmaster Torch is a man covered in hideous burn scars. His wounds, and his eyes, glimmer green in the sunlight.

He hovers a few feet off the ground on his carpet.

"Indeed. Grandmaster Torch, the Emerald Sage, at your service once more noble Amenopheus."

Torch bows, and nods towards the other sages, before reaching into a haversack.

"I brought the supplies you requested."

He sees Agate and smiles. He walks over to her and hands her a small bag.

"It is a pleasure to see you again Agate! It's good to be here. Thank you all for allowing me to come along."

You can view (simplified) character sheets for the sages on the maps and handouts slides. See discussion thread for more details.

Sovereign Court

Human Male UC Monk 1/Pal 6 | HP 44/53 (0 nl, 0 temp)| AC 23 T 18 FF 17 | CMB +13, CMD 31 | F: +14, R: +11, W: +11 | Init: +4 | Perc: +9, SM: +4, Dipl +8 | Speed 30 | ER Fire/Cold (4) Rest (3), Immune: Disease, Fear* (*+4 to allies within 10 feet) | Spells: 1(2/2) LOH: 5/7 (3d6) Smite 2/2 Active conditions: 10 ft reach, Mage Armor

"First teleportation, second by the wings of dragon... totally wicked!"

----------------

As they land at the encampment, Ischell steps down into the sand and begins to stretch his sore muscles. He glances up and see a figure approaching, dressed in a similar robe as him. He turns towards the elf and gives a deep bow, right hand extended.

"My name is Sir Ischell de Ivocus, Seeker of Enlightenment. It is my honor to greet one so far down the path". He stands again, though his posture now is more one of rigid training that the lackadaisical posture at the previous meeting.


Dhiara bows as well and smiles at Ischell.

"It is a pleasure to meet you Sir Ischell de Ivocus, Seeker of Enlightment. I am Dhiara, the Topaz Sage, paragon of the Osirian monastry of Tar-Kuata. I thank you and your companions for your allegiance."

Grand Lodge

Male LN Oread Occultist 7 / Living Monolith 1 | HP 54/66 | AC 19 T 11 FF 18 | CMB +10, CMD 21 | F: +9, R: +5, W: +10; (+2 vs. negative levels, death effects, and mind-affecting effects) | Init: +1 | Perc: +10 (+12 to notice stonework), SM: +8; Darkvision | Speed 20ft | Mental Focus: Abj.: 1/4; Trans.: 6/6 | Spells: 1st - 4/5, 2nd - 4/4, 3rd - 2/2 | Active conditions: None.

Wow. A lot can happen in a day, apparently.

Athum is left speechless at the reveal of Tahonikepsu's true form, and he willingly climbs aboard for the ride.

On landing in the camp, the Oread is delighted to meet more of the sages, though his positive demeanor changes when Torch arrives. While he doesn't make any direct comments or threats, he keeps the former Grandmaster in eyesight at all times.

Knowledge (religion): 1d20 + 8 ⇒ (2) + 8 = 10

Unsure of Sinuhotep's origins, Athum greets the sages. "It will be a pleasure to work with you. I hope to put my newly acquired status as an Osirian protector to good benefit."

Scarab Sages

F Dwarf Wizard 10

Agate gulps and bows to the dragon before climbing aboard.

Knowledge (Religion): 1d20 + 8 ⇒ (19) + 8 = 27 (+3 more if this involves Osiriani religion)

She looks at Sinuhotep oddly for a moment, but says nothing.

Agate greets Torch politely and accepts the bag.

Silver Crusade

F Half Orc Alchemist 10 Bombs 17/17
Spoiler:
HP83/83 - AC 25, T 16, FF 21/ F +12, R +14, W +7/ CMD 23, Per +14(Dk Vis), Init +4, Move 30ft

" It was a joke. A bad joke but still a joke. One of our party said levity might help ," Peridot says apologetically to her.

Dark Archive

Active Conditions: Life Link: Zeno, Shield Other: Kiboko, LOH: 14/14 Male Gnome 36007-3 Paladin Holy Light 8/Oracle Life 1 | AC 22 T 12 FF 21 w/SMITE 28 T 18 FF 27 | HP 83/83 | F +14 R +11 W +15 | Init +2 | Acro -3 | Bluff +6 | Dipl +10 | Intim + 6 | Know (rel) + 4 | Ling + 11 | Perc +2

Know rel: 1d20 + 6 ⇒ (15) + 6 = 21

Upon interacting with Sinuhotep, Ahn suddenly goes tense, hand instinctively reaching back to grab the scabbard of his great sword as if he's about to draw it with his other hand.

He steps back. He looks from paladin to paladin, back to Sinuhotep, and detects evil.

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