GM Hawthwile's Hell's Vengeance

Game Master Hawthwile

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Dragon's Demand | Hell's Vengeance | Hao Jin Cataclysm | Debt to the Quah | Beyond the Halflight Path

Colorful wooden shields and weathered antlers hang upon the deck girdling this rustic public house. Overhead, a sign carved with crenellations bears the name “The Last Stand Tavern” - the letters “L” and “T” formed with painted green-fletched arrows

Inside, a hooded figure sits alone at a table for five. Drunken revelry and sloshy singing easily mask the sound of a small knife being unsheathed and rapidly resheathed repeatedly below the table. Green eyes glare from beneath the hood at a drunk that wanders too close to the secluded alcove, their gaze almost as sharp as the dagger that suddenly appears in her hand before disappearing just as quickly.

"So, we finally meet face to face," she says with a grin. "So tell me, why would you be a better hire than any of those booze-soaked louts over there? I can't afford any... liabilities on this job."


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Female LE Human (Chelaxian) Warpriest (Molthuni Arsenal Chaplain) of Achaekek/1 | HP 7/9 | AC 16 T 13 FF 13 | CMB +2, CMD 15 | F: +3, R: +3, W: +3 | Init: +3 | Perc: +2, SM: +1 | Speed 30ft | Blessings: 3/3 | Spells: 1st 2/2 | Active conditions: None.

A red-haired Chelaxian woman enters the tavern—a thin red cloak with an fur lining keeping herself warm in the fading winter weather. Her fair-skinned beauty tarnished by a hideous scar going from one corner of her face to the opposite. A pair of sheathed daggers and longswords—one of each at each hip—occasionally glinting as she strides through the drunken hall—they’re not particularly well-hidden, but it’s clear that was never the intent. Unseen to all, though, are the heavy serrations in each blade on her person, hidden by the sheaths in which they stay.

The woman quickly scans the facility before resting her eyes upon the cloak figure in the back corner. She watches for a few moments as he fiddles with his dagger under the table.

Not exactly subtle, now is it?

Sense Motive on the dagger-man: 1d20 + 1 ⇒ (19) + 1 = 20

She quickly makes her way to the stranger, ignoring the drunken requests for a “night to remember” from a few of the patrons and seats herself across from the green-eyed man—the swords at each hip not seeming to get in her way as she sits, as if she’s used to sitting with them at her side, a split in her cloak (known to some as a tail) allows her to be seated without the blades poking at and stretching the fabric.

She looks the man in the eye as he speaks. Once it is clear he is done but before anyone else can make a sound she chuckles slightly, her face never showing a hint of a smile.

”Surely you’re aware of how this operates, correct? I won’t work with someone who can’t pay up, so at least show me that you’re able to at least do that much. If you don’t have any coin on you, then deal’s off. If you have coin, then we’ll talk, and I’ll see how much the service will cost you.”


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Male daemon-spawn tiefling unch. rogue (eldritch scoundrel) 1 | HP: 9/9 | AC 14 T 14 FF 10 | CMB: +1, CMD: 15 | F: +1, R: +6, W: +0 (Resist 5 fire, cold, electric) | Init: +5 | Perc: +7 (darkvision, trapfinding), SM: +1 | Speed 30 | mwk rapier +5 (1d6+1/18-20), shortbow +4 (1d6/×3) | Spells: 1st Mage Armor, Vanish, 0, detect magic, ray of frost, read magic |*Active: N/A

Wolfgang slips into the tavern, pulling the door closed silently behind him. He leaves the hood of his cloak pulled up, hoping to avoid for at least a moment any notice of his pale, grayish skin, beaded with sweat despite the late winter cold, his misshapen ears, or the small horns poking through his hair.

The grimborn knows his tail - decidedly not a feature of his cloak - will give him away once he takes a few steps into the seating area, so he stays by the door and scans the room, looking for his contact. His eyes almost skip past the red head seated at the far table before registering the twin blades sheathed at her hips. He takes a second look at the red head's companion, also cloaked, then nods to himself.

That's her. Haven't seen the muscle before, but it doesn't really matter who she is, does it? I need this job.

Wolfgang takes a breath to calm his nerves, squares his emaciated shoulders, and makes his way around the shadowy edges of the room to the pair's table, carefully weaving between the other, drunker patrons to avoid bumping anyone and risking an argument. His long, thin fingers twitch involuntarily in the direction of one of his razor-sharp knives, but with an effort he stays their movement. Arriving at the table, he pulls out the chair next to the red head and spins it around, sitting on it backwards to make room for his slender tail.

"Word is you need something done discreetly," he snarls to the cloaked woman. "I doubt you'll find that quality among the buffoons drowning their wits in what passes for beer in this town."

Smile, damn you! Pretend to give a crap about her opinion!

Wolfgang's mouth widens, showing a mouth of yellow, uneven teeth in a poor attempt at a friendly smile. An observer might be forgiven for backing slowly away.

Wolfgang tries to force his grating voice to reflect the smile; he succeeds only at sounding forced. "I specialize in discretion. How can I be of service?" He turns to the red head, and adds, "I don't think I've had the pleasure. I am Wolfgang, Wolfgang von Erzteufel." As an afterthought, he sticks out a skeletal hand for Sicaria to shake.

If Sicaria shakes Wolfgang's hand:
Wolfgang's hand is sweaty, and feverishly warm. His grip is surprisingly strong, and there are callouses on his thumb and the side of his middle finger, probably from repetitive work with slender tools.


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Female LE Human (Chelaxian) Warpriest (Molthuni Arsenal Chaplain) of Achaekek/1 | HP 7/9 | AC 16 T 13 FF 13 | CMB +2, CMD 15 | F: +3, R: +3, W: +3 | Init: +3 | Perc: +2, SM: +1 | Speed 30ft | Blessings: 3/3 | Spells: 1st 2/2 | Active conditions: None.

Sicaria eyes the tiefling’s outstretched hand and follows it up to meet the newcomer’s gaze.

Not exactly discreet for a specialist of discretion.

Sicaria raises an eyebrow, her face contorting into a mix of confusion and curiosity. She lingers on him long enough to wordlessly emphasize that she will not shake his hand. When his long thin fingers fall she breaks eye contact and returns it to the cloaked stranger—checking her pockets to make sure nothing has been taken. After a moment, though, she speaks.

”Sicaria Rubei. A pleasure.”


Male daemon-spawn tiefling unch. rogue (eldritch scoundrel) 1 | HP: 9/9 | AC 14 T 14 FF 10 | CMB: +1, CMD: 15 | F: +1, R: +6, W: +0 (Resist 5 fire, cold, electric) | Init: +5 | Perc: +7 (darkvision, trapfinding), SM: +1 | Speed 30 | mwk rapier +5 (1d6+1/18-20), shortbow +4 (1d6/×3) | Spells: 1st Mage Armor, Vanish, 0, detect magic, ray of frost, read magic |*Active: N/A

After an awkward moment, Wolfgang lowers his hand and surreptitiously wipes sweat onto his trouser leg under the table.

When Sircaria moves to check her pockets, Wolfgang yanks his tail away from her belt pouch, startling a barmaid carrying a tray of full tankards into spilling ale onto a grizzled, one-eyed veteran of some border dispute or internal "police action." The barmaid, on the man's blind side, keeps moving; by the time the aging vet turns to see who splashed him, she's gone past his table. Instead, he locks onto a loud drunk merchant who is waving around a half-full stein to punctuate a long-winded joke he's telling his bored companions. The one-eyed man pushes back his chair, stands, and punches the merchant square in the jaw, knocking him into the lap of a tired woman wearing the uniform of the town militia. She shoves the wailing merchant onto the floor, carefully places her drink on the table, and stands to face the one-eyed man...

Wolfgang observes the commotion for a moment, then shakes his head, tsk-ing to himself.

Having failed in his attempt to be ingratiating, Wolfgang shifts back to their host, his voice returning to its usual gravelly hiss. "As you were saying, ma'am. Why would I be a better hire than any of these booze-soaked morons? Discretion, as I said. Also, I rarely have much trouble figuring out who I need to cut; I doubt you could say the same for this lot."


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Male CE Half-Elf Oracle (Ancient Lorekeeper) 1 | HP 9/9 | AC:20 T:13 FF:17 | CMD 8 | Fort+1 Ref+3 Will+2 | Init+11 | Perc+0, SM+0 | Speed: 20ft.

Does this town always smell like pigshit, or is today some sort of special occasion? Vigo stood outside the walls of The Last Stand Tavern, watching through the windows with a cruel smile as yet another brawl broke out inside the bar. With a mumble under his breath Vigo casts a spark of divine magic unto himself, a precaution before meeting his contact. Vigo casts Guidance on himself.

Throwing open the doors of the inn, Vigo makes no attempt at hiding his presence when he enters. His deformed appearance—long elven legs with short human arms, mismatched eyes, and long but round ears—never failed to grab attention, but any patron stupid enough to heckle him would be put in their place with a vicious diatribe of threats and insults.

Intimidate Check (Force Friendliness): 1d20 + 15 ⇒ (5) + 15 = 20

Worthless oafs, all of them. His eyes scan the crowd, looking for anyone matching the description of his contact. Vigo was clad in the traditional leather parade armor of Cheliax and carried no weapons, though his gloves were padded with metal and lined with vicious spikes in case anyone needed a reminder of their place. Longacre was full of unhappy, unruly subjects and Vigo was eager for the chance to put down such ungrateful cretins. They were a disease on this country.

After a moment of searching he eventually spots the hooded figure and her companions. Quietly plotting in a corner, pulled hoods, and no drinks. That must be them. Vigo shoulders his way through the commotion of bar towards the table, pushing aside any drunks in his way. Time to put on the show.

Knowledge Nobility to know Proper Etiquette (DC 15): 1d20 + 8 ⇒ (13) + 8 = 21

Vigo politely withdraws his chair, showing the proper respect and etiquette that's expected of a Chelish noble meeting on business. "Good evening, I do hope you haven't waited overly long." Vigo turns to Sicaria first, then Wolfgang, giving each a polite bow. His milky white eye looks them up and down, inspecting their weapons with silent approval. "Considering you're sharing our table and aren't being stabbed for it, I take it there's going to be a team for this one?" His gaze returns to the hooded woman with a smile. At the woman's question he scoffs, offended at being compared to drunken peasants. "Keep asking questions like that and you'll be the liability." He offers a hand forward, "Vigo. Vigo Graviano."

Using Bluff check to pass a secret message to the contact, DC 31 Sense Motive check for others to decipher:

Guided Bluff Check to pass along secret message (Complex, DC 20): 1d20 + 11 + 1 ⇒ (19) + 11 + 1 = 31
Vigo glances at the Chelish flag on his armor and mouths the words "Hail Queen Abrogail, glory to House Thrune."

Vigo turns in his seat and flags down a barmaid for a drink and a plate of food, looking to his companions with an amused grin. "Would anyone else care for a drink or bite to eat?"


Female LE Human (Chelaxian) Warpriest (Molthuni Arsenal Chaplain) of Achaekek/1 | HP 7/9 | AC 16 T 13 FF 13 | CMB +2, CMD 15 | F: +3, R: +3, W: +3 | Init: +3 | Perc: +2, SM: +1 | Speed 30ft | Blessings: 3/3 | Spells: 1st 2/2 | Active conditions: None.

Sicaria crinkles her nose for a slight moment at this elven newcomer.

Interesting characters in the Heartlands, aren’t there?

The red-haired woman shakes her head. ”I am fine—there should be at least one of us that remains sober, don’t you think?”

Sicaria places her hands on her lap, ready to draw her weapons at a moment’s notice should the need arise.


Cimri Staelish

"I think we should all remain sober," the woman comments dryly. "Drink when the fun's done." She glances impatiently at the door. "I'm expecting one more 'interested party' before we get this show on the road. Those of you who haven't met me before, you can call me Cimri."

"Sicaria, don't press your luck. You're not an assassin yet, or you wouldn't be in this," she pauses to glance at Vigo, "fine establishment. Or even this town. I kept my word on the last job, I'll keep it again - and you'll get paid when the job's done, same as me."

"Wolfgang, the fact that you didn't get stabbed on your way through the door speaks to your discretion. Just keep your breath pointed away from me before I lose whatever half-cooked roadkill I just ate here." She grins. "Now, if we could weaponize that..."

"And Vigo. Yes, yes, loyalty to Thrune and all that nonsense. Just keep your head down before someone decides you'd look better without it. And, I might point out, your empty pockets might be considered a 'liability'. One you would like to fix, yes? But do you have the contacts, the drop point, the fence, the contracts? No? Then shut up and listen."

"Now make sure you know each other well enough not to get in each other's way. I'm off to find that 'interested party'." She rises, tucks her dagger back into her boot, and deftly moves through the growing barroom brawl.

What do you do?


Male CE Half-Elf Oracle (Ancient Lorekeeper) 1 | HP 9/9 | AC:20 T:13 FF:17 | CMD 8 | Fort+1 Ref+3 Will+2 | Init+11 | Perc+0, SM+0 | Speed: 20ft.

Vigo steps in front of Cimri when she goes to leave, glaring her down and hissing between his teeth. "I'm here because her Infernal Magistrix urges her loyal subjects to reaffirm their loyalty to Thrune, and take care of those who don't. Disrespect them, or I, again and I'll see to it that your soul spends its eternity being defiled in the deepest pit of the Abyss." With a cruel smile he pats her shoulder and nods to the door. "Now get the hell out of here and get us the information we need."

Intimidate: 1d20 + 15 ⇒ (20) + 15 = 35

Talk about a natural 20.

With his piece said he returns to his seat, glancing at Wolfkrone and Sicaria. "Show them even a hint of weakness and you'll end up dead. Now," he leans back in his chair, flagging down that drink, "hopefully you have more social tact than she. If we're taking a mission together then we'll need to keep each other alive. We stand to benefit more from aiding each other than backstabbing each other, wouldn't you all agree? This mudhole town of Longacre is just a stepping stone to bigger and grander things." He takes a sip from his drink and looks at his new companions. "Or are you going to try and stab me the moment I turn my back for a few coins?"


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Male daemon-spawn tiefling unch. rogue (eldritch scoundrel) 1 | HP: 9/9 | AC 14 T 14 FF 10 | CMB: +1, CMD: 15 | F: +1, R: +6, W: +0 (Resist 5 fire, cold, electric) | Init: +5 | Perc: +7 (darkvision, trapfinding), SM: +1 | Speed 30 | mwk rapier +5 (1d6+1/18-20), shortbow +4 (1d6/×3) | Spells: 1st Mage Armor, Vanish, 0, detect magic, ray of frost, read magic |*Active: N/A

Wolfgang takes Vigo's proffered hand and introduces himself with another forced smile. His self-deprecating laughter at Cimri's comment about his breath is almost as obviously fake. The tiefling's surprise at Vigo's tirade when Cimri stands to step away from the table is entirely real.

"I don't know," Wolfgang responds to the half-elf. "Cimri's been pretty up front with me so far. Sounds like if I were to stab you in the back for a few coins, I'd be wasting my time." He begins to dig under a gnarled fingernail with the tip of a dagger, cleaning out what looks like dark red sand, or maybe dried blood. "So tell me, Vigo, when you say we shouldn't show 'them' any weakness, who's 'them'? Because if you mean the people we have to satisfy in order to get paid, I think they know my main weakness is in my coin pouch. Yours too, I guess."

Good going, Wolf. You're definitely making friends and building loyalty here. Idiot.

He sighs, wipes his dagger on his pants, and puts it back into his belt sheath. "Fine. If we're going to have to work together on this job, we'd better know what the others can do. Most jobs, I'm hired to be the door man: get us into whatever we need to get into, get us out of whatever we need to get out of. I deal with locks, traps, and alarms, and do a little knife work when I need to."

Wolfgang doesn't say anything about spellcasting; some people get nervous around magic users. He thinks it will probably be better to find out what the job's about first.


Male CE Half-Elf Oracle (Ancient Lorekeeper) 1 | HP 9/9 | AC:20 T:13 FF:17 | CMD 8 | Fort+1 Ref+3 Will+2 | Init+11 | Perc+0, SM+0 | Speed: 20ft.

"We are in a state of martial law until we can quell those who aren't loyal to Cheliax and House Thrune. Her blatant disrespect will make enemies, and I don't intend to share them." He scoffs into his mug, quoting her with a snarl. "'All that nonsense' she says. Words like those are why we're here." He finishes the rest of his drink then tosses the mug onto an unattended table nearby.

"I didn't come to this pathetic excuse for a village for money, I came here because this nation needs strong and loyal leadership. This town is full of ungrateful cretins whose pestilent disloyalty needs to be stomped out." Vigo looks around at the bars patrons, disgust evident on his face. It softens into a amused smile when he answers Wolfgang's next question. "As for who 'they' are? In this devil-forsaken country they're everyone; it's an eat or be eaten nation." He gives a crooked grin to the tiefling."Besides, where the real money lies isn't petty jobs in farming communities. If we want money we need to climb."

When Wolfgang begins listing his talents, Vigo listens to the tiefling with sincere interest, weighing their value out and smiling when he finishes. "You know your own worth, that's good. Those are the kind of skills that will take you, and us, places." He gives Wolfgang a small nod of respect before continuing.

"Deception, manipulation, and intimidation are my specialties, when that fails, I turn to magic. Whether crippling foes or healing my..." he pauses and smiles around the table, "...friends, it has its uses. I'm also a scholar of the culture of Cheliax, as well as of gods and other beings from beyond our plane."

With that he finishes and leans back in his chair, gesturing forward sarcastically. "Anything else? My shoe size perhaps? Favorite food? Celwynvian Stone Fruit for the record. Roasted, not raw."


Female LE Human (Chelaxian) Warpriest (Molthuni Arsenal Chaplain) of Achaekek/1 | HP 7/9 | AC 16 T 13 FF 13 | CMB +2, CMD 15 | F: +3, R: +3, W: +3 | Init: +3 | Perc: +2, SM: +1 | Speed 30ft | Blessings: 3/3 | Spells: 1st 2/2 | Active conditions: None.
Cimri wrote:
”You’re not an assassin yet...”

Sicaria’s eye twitches slightly.

Semantic little...!

She bites her tongue before her thoughts can become words; she knows Cimri’s technically right.

The woman listens intently to Vigo’s and Wolfgang’s conversation. She stares at Vigo with a blank look in her eyes. Her staring lingers far too long—what seems to be habit for her—as she eyes the half-elf up and down.

Sicaria breaks her silence; she giggles. It carries with it the lighthearted and innocent purity of a young girl that is drastically juxtaposed against the scars on her body and calluses upon her fingers that tell a tale of hardship and battle. The laugh is beautiful to hear as even the slightest unintentional sound seems melodious and deliberate.

”You are quite the hypocrite, Viggy!” she says—her words carry neither venom nor malice, as if she were just speaking a plain fact that she simply found amusing. She lowers her voice, barely audible over the nearby drunken brawl.

”You speak of tact and deception when you shout your ambitions and loyalties loud enough for those on Akiton to hear you. You speak threats and coercions when you hardly look like you’ve met the field of battle—in this dog-eat-dog country that you describe I find the hound before me to be all bark and no bite. Keep speaking of your Loyalist nature and you may very well find a knife in your back—not from your comrades, but from those who oppose House Thrune. Even outside of that, if you so publicly reach for ambitions in one avenue you will find yourself hindered in others.”

Her words linger in the air momentarily before she leans back in her chair, a smirk on her face and she continues, no longer keeping her voice low.

”As an example, take the Asmodean—“ She stops abruptly. She turns to face the public altar to the Prince of Darkness in the tavern and makes a quick yet resolute genuflection toward the statue before returning to her seat and continuing.

”—the Asmodean High Inquisitor, Barzillai Thrune. A great and honorable position within the Church, no doubt about that, but with respect to House Thrune, he is treated as nothing more than Her Infernal Majestrix’s ‘creepy cousin.’ tongue-in-cheek reference to Hell’s Rebels He commands respect within the Church, but not among his own brood. Learn from him: learn when to shut your mouth; it is an art.”

Sicaria stands and shifts her eyes between the tiefling and the half-elf.

”From the sounds of it, it seems we are to be working together, so we’d do best to get along and play nice,” she shoots a glare at Vigo.

”And know this: if you find your greed to be worth betraying your fellows, then you will certainly find me to no longer be one of your fellows any longer, and,” Sicaria swiftly places her left hand upon the hilt of the sword at her left hip and draws the weapon just enough to allow the ricasso to reflect the lantern light into her comrades’ eyes.

”You will just as certainly find yourselves being my next target.”

She sheathes the small portion of her blade and sips at her glass of water as if she did not just make a death threat in the first place.


Male daemon-spawn tiefling unch. rogue (eldritch scoundrel) 1 | HP: 9/9 | AC 14 T 14 FF 10 | CMB: +1, CMD: 15 | F: +1, R: +6, W: +0 (Resist 5 fire, cold, electric) | Init: +5 | Perc: +7 (darkvision, trapfinding), SM: +1 | Speed 30 | mwk rapier +5 (1d6+1/18-20), shortbow +4 (1d6/×3) | Spells: 1st Mage Armor, Vanish, 0, detect magic, ray of frost, read magic |*Active: N/A

Wolfgang raises an unruly eyebrow and gives Sicaria a sardonic grin. His effort to appear unconcerned is belied by his shifting his chair a few inches further away from the swordswoman.

"So you're saying that on this job, we should leave the blade work to you. I'm happy to cede the field and stick to my lockpicks."

The slight quaver in Wolfgang's voice might be due to any number of possible causes unrelated to his intimidating company.


Male CE Half-Elf Oracle (Ancient Lorekeeper) 1 | HP 9/9 | AC:20 T:13 FF:17 | CMD 8 | Fort+1 Ref+3 Will+2 | Init+11 | Perc+0, SM+0 | Speed: 20ft.

When Sicaria finishes her lecture, Vigo sarcastically raises his empty hand as if toasting and says, "To my new friend Sicaria, who is already so overwhelmingly concerned with my well being she prepared a speech for it." With a yawn he leans his chair back and kicks his feet up on the table, his eyes drifting to the door that Cimri exited, wondering impatiently when she'll return with their final "interested party."


Female LE Human (Chelaxian) Warpriest (Molthuni Arsenal Chaplain) of Achaekek/1 | HP 7/9 | AC 16 T 13 FF 13 | CMB +2, CMD 15 | F: +3, R: +3, W: +3 | Init: +3 | Perc: +2, SM: +1 | Speed 30ft | Blessings: 3/3 | Spells: 1st 2/2 | Active conditions: None.

Sense Motive (for roleplay purposes): 1d20 + 1 ⇒ (14) + 1 = 15 Aww. I was actually kinda hoping for a low roll…

Sicaria takes a deep breath and sighs, clearly frustrated up with the half-elf’s antics.

”You joke now, but we both know I’m right. Keep speaking like the splendid gentleman you’ve been already and you’ll end up angering the wrong people. Such as Miss Cimri.”

The red-haired woman leaves it at that, the sarcasm in her voice hardly noticeable.


Male CE Half-Elf Oracle (Ancient Lorekeeper) 1 | HP 9/9 | AC:20 T:13 FF:17 | CMD 8 | Fort+1 Ref+3 Will+2 | Init+11 | Perc+0, SM+0 | Speed: 20ft.

Growing bored while he waits, Vigo takes another crack at striking up conversation. "Our beloved benefactor seems preoccupied finding our last member, so we may as well build at least a semblance of team spirit while we wait." He kicks his feet off the table, returning to a normal sitting position. "Do either of you have any hobbies outside of murder and thievery?" Vigo begins ruffling through the pack at his feet, withdrawing a book titled Introduction to Law: The Asmodean Methods before tying his bag firmly shut. He looks to Wolfgang with a sly grin when he double knots the bag closed. "I most often spend my nights reading, whether broadening the horizons of my knowledge or losing myself in fantastical worlds. Most of my books have been pilfered and I'm hopeful I'll have the chance to regrow my collection. Those who dwell in misery often seek escapes, with luck this town will have many for me to acquire." He twirls the book in his hands, looking back and forth to his companions with curiosity. "What about the two of you? No, let me guess first! Sicaria... you're a beekeeper? And Wolfgang... you carve clogs?" The playful smirk on Vigo's face gives a sense of friendly sarcasm.


Male daemon-spawn tiefling unch. rogue (eldritch scoundrel) 1 | HP: 9/9 | AC 14 T 14 FF 10 | CMB: +1, CMD: 15 | F: +1, R: +6, W: +0 (Resist 5 fire, cold, electric) | Init: +5 | Perc: +7 (darkvision, trapfinding), SM: +1 | Speed 30 | mwk rapier +5 (1d6+1/18-20), shortbow +4 (1d6/×3) | Spells: 1st Mage Armor, Vanish, 0, detect magic, ray of frost, read magic |*Active: N/A

In spite of his first impression of the half-elf, Wolfgang shrugs off the insult and leans forward involuntarily, eager at the possibility that he might be working with someone with similar interests.

"Really? I'm a bit of a bookworm myself, actually! I'm mainly interested in arcane lore and travelers' reports from the Great Beyond, although I also enjoy..."

Wolfgang sees the tome Vigo drops onto the table and slumps back into his chair. "Ah, of course. Theology. I should have guessed. Not really one of my primary interests, but to each his own."

He starts drumming his fingers on the table. I just hope he doesn't start preaching. Gray Watcher save me from the true believers!


Male CE Half-Elf Oracle (Ancient Lorekeeper) 1 | HP 9/9 | AC:20 T:13 FF:17 | CMD 8 | Fort+1 Ref+3 Will+2 | Init+11 | Perc+0, SM+0 | Speed: 20ft.

Vigo's eyes light up at meeting a fellow scholar, especially at the mention of arcane lore. "My magic is divine, I haven't yet had chances to study as deeply into the arcane as I'd like. Given time I will but so many books, so little time." He snorts at the mention of theology when Wolfgang sees the book. "Think more of a barrister's manual to telling half truths than a holy text of Asmodeus, it's an instructional textbook written to teach aspiring clergymen on the art of deception. Applied outside of the courtroom and church, the knowledge inside is just as useful."

That's Vigo's Masterwork Tool of Bluff, but only applies to deceiving others.

Vigo snaps the tome shut and returns it to his bag, rifling through its contents with a bit more excitement now. "My studies lie more in Chelish culture and nobility, though you are correct in that I study theology." He grins up from below the table. "All theology. And the various planes themselves, they and their denizens are much more fascinating than our own Material Plane." He suddenly pauses for a moment and recites a quick chant to himself. Casting Guidance on himself.

Knowledge (Planes) check to identify a creature's planar origin (DC 20), if I can use that to identify tiefling heritage: 1d20 + 6 + 1 ⇒ (14) + 6 + 1 = 21

Vigo peers up at Wolfgang for a moment then smiles, whispering briefly. "Let me guess. Daemon-spawn? I was actually raised by tieflings in a boarding house. Long story, no one wanted an ugly baby." Vigo actually does have the Adopted (Tiefling) trait.

His hands seem to finally find their target at the bottom of his pack and he withdraws a blue-covered book. "Here, this might be of more interest to you." He slides the book across the table towards Wolfgang, looking quite pleased with himself. "I've done some research on Longacre prior to my arrival, knowledge is power after all."

Offering the tiefling a moment to see the offered book, Vigo turns his attention to Sicaria, still interested in any hobbies or interests she might have to share.


Female LE Human (Chelaxian) Warpriest (Molthuni Arsenal Chaplain) of Achaekek/1 | HP 7/9 | AC 16 T 13 FF 13 | CMB +2, CMD 15 | F: +3, R: +3, W: +3 | Init: +3 | Perc: +2, SM: +1 | Speed 30ft | Blessings: 3/3 | Spells: 1st 2/2 | Active conditions: None.

Relief washes through Sicaria as she half-listens to the two scholar’s intellectual ravings and only stops zoning out once she notices Vigo staring at her, clearly interested in what she has to say, stifling her relief.

The woman’s face turns a faint shade of red from embarrassment. ”I was born a soldier and trained to kill. That is who I am. I’ve…never really thought of pursuing anything outside of that…Though the differing beliefs of theologies has interested me for a time, I’ve admittedly not pursued the avenue in favor of the art of the kill, and anything I do know is more than likely to bore you two to death.”

She takes a large gulp of her water despite not being that thirsty, clearly trying to disengage from the topic.

Perhaps I should find other things to do. I suppose I won’t be spending every waking hour killing someone.

She chokes slightly on her water as she realizes something. ”Well, I suppose warfare is something that interests me. Military strategies and tactics and so forth. I just never really saw that as a ‘hobby,’ more of a necessity. You die on the fields of battle if you are not competent enough to recognize the enemy’s plan and work to counter it.”

Dark Archive

Male NE Tengu Bloodrager (Urban) 1 | HP: 7/16 | AC: 17 (Touch: 15, Flat: 12) | CMB: +4, CMD: 16 | Fort: +4, Ref: +2, Wis: +2 | Init: +2 | Perc: +8, Sense Motive: +2, Lowlight Vision | Speed: 30 | Active Conditions: Bloodrage 6/6 Rounds

Sometime later as the party is discussing various topics to hurry along the wait, there conversation is suddenly halted by a distinct "CLICK CLICK CLICK" of heavy talons walking across the hardwood floor of the tavern. The source of the noise quickly becomes apparent as a large tengu strolls slowly towards them. The tengu is slightly hunched over, and draped in a long, hooded cloak. Still standing at an impressive height of over six heads tall, the bizarre figure makes his way closer, revealing several more distinct oddities about his appearance despite his attempt at "Discretion". His skin is a black, grayish hue, the callous and ashy flesh is nearly featherless, and his hands end in wickedly sharp, yellow claws. The tengus head cocks side to side ever so slightly as his large beaked snout sniffs at the air. He approaches the throng of the group and begins his introduction with a short, polite bow, his red beady eyes never leaving the group as his head dips..

"Greetingsss, greetings. I am Nomed, I too am here for work such as you all. I wish many many sorries upon you for my late arrival, travel is difficult at times in this city. If all are present we may begin soon soon I hope. The boss pays well, and good jobs have been hard to find."

Perception:

A keen eye may notice Nomed is wearing a cloth weapped over his forehead, a small bump in the center of the cloth hinting at something concealed underneath

During his introduction the tengu seems to hone in on the half elf?? among the group, singling him out by offering an enthusiastic handshake that seems obviously forced

If Vigo accepts the handshake:

Nomed "attempts" to pass a note in private to Vigo during the greeting...

Mysterious Note:
"Vigo. You can proclaim your superiority as you lie starving in the stable loft again tonight, or you can show you're able to work with people and fill your belly with the foods you believe you deserve. All it'll take is an apology - as loud as your insults earlier. I'll be waiting, but not forever."


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Male CE Half-Elf Oracle (Ancient Lorekeeper) 1 | HP 9/9 | AC:20 T:13 FF:17 | CMD 8 | Fort+1 Ref+3 Will+2 | Init+11 | Perc+0, SM+0 | Speed: 20ft.

The tapping of claws on floor draws Vigo's eyes to the door and they widen as they land on the tengu, though it's hard to say if from shock or excitement. When Nomed makes his introduction known Vigo bursts into a wide toothy grin and offers a seat! "Now this is the kind of help I can see needing! Come come, join us Nomed." Vigo lowers his voice, though his mouth is still turned up in a grin. "And quickly, before we draw too many eyes.

Perception: 1d20 ⇒ 5
Whatever lies beneath the headband it's lost on Vigo, whose eyes are looking up and down this new arrival's monstrous physique.

Is Lamashtu sending her personal servants to aid us now? Not the kind of help I'll be in a hurry to reject, that's for certain.

When the tengu offers his hand Vigo takes it with pleasure, but raises his eyebrows when he feels something being palmed in the handshake.

Sense Motive: 1d20 ⇒ 4

Still wary of the newcomer, Vigo makes no effort to hide the fact that a note has just been passed to him and unfolds the sheet of paper at the table. Before reading he glances up at Wolfgang and Sicaria, wondering if they knew something he didn't.

Vigo's eyes quickly scan the note, and as he reads the stern frown that was plastered on his face slowly shifts to a smirk, then a smile, then an outright grin. He stands and leans forward over the table, looking to all of his companions, including Nomed, with a look of excitement in his eyes. "There's something I must do, forgive the theatrics. Someone has forced my hand and they specifically asked me to be loud." With that he clears his throat and hoists himself up, standing tall on top the table they were drinking at. Before speaking he says a quick chant to himself (Guidance) and drops the note on the table, available if anyone had an interest in reading it.

Secret Note:
"Vigo. You can proclaim your superiority as you lie starving in the stable loft again tonight, or you can show you're able to work with people and fill your belly with the foods you believe you deserve. All it'll take is an apology - as loud as your insults earlier. I'll be waiting, but not forever."

From atop the table, Vigo's voice booms across the tavern. "Good men and women of Longacre! I promise I need but a moment of your time, I must right a wrong that has been done! My dearest friend's feelings have been wounded, and she now hides amongst you for fear of facing me."

His expression drops to one of deep sadness, his eyes welling with tears and his ears drooping. "My dear, I know you are there, and my heart breaks in tandem with yours to know you hurt so. So I offer you this sincere apology, in the eyes of all to see! Please, return to me!" He raises his mug when he finishes, hopefully to a drunken cheer he may have stirred up with the "emotional" performance.

Bluff: 1d20 + 13 + 1 ⇒ (8) + 13 + 1 = 22

Perform (Oratory) to not upset the crowd: 1d20 + 5 ⇒ (11) + 5 = 16

DC 16 falls under "Enjoyable Performance"

With that Vigo steps down, returning to his spot at the table with a grumble, a hint of honest frustration in his voice. "Now hopefully we can get started with this job. I didn't know I'd be taking care of my employer's feelings on this one."


Female LE Human (Chelaxian) Warpriest (Molthuni Arsenal Chaplain) of Achaekek/1 | HP 7/9 | AC 16 T 13 FF 13 | CMB +2, CMD 15 | F: +3, R: +3, W: +3 | Init: +3 | Perc: +2, SM: +1 | Speed 30ft | Blessings: 3/3 | Spells: 1st 2/2 | Active conditions: None.

Sicaria is quickly rendered speechless by the arrival of the…she thinks it’s a tengu. She hopes it’s a tengu. She not-so-subtly scoots her chair away from the newcomer.

As Vigo takes Nomed’s note and glances at Sicaria, the human looks back with sincere confusion and curiosity across her face. Vigo’s sudden speech further deepens the confusion on her face as she leans over to read the note left upon the table. A slight chuckle emanates from her as she reads it, learning the context of this speech.

At Vigo’s conclusion she raises her half-empty glass—or perhaps half-full—about a foot off of the table in response to the man’s “toast.” As the half-elf scholar seats himself the Chelaxian keeps her glass raised and looks at the frustrated man, the smirk on her face speaking volumes of her intent:

I told you so.

She breaks eye contact and sets down her glass. She scans the tavern once more.

”That makes four. Now what happened to Cimri?”


Male CE Half-Elf Oracle (Ancient Lorekeeper) 1 | HP 9/9 | AC:20 T:13 FF:17 | CMD 8 | Fort+1 Ref+3 Will+2 | Init+11 | Perc+0, SM+0 | Speed: 20ft.

When Vigo notices Sicaria's arrogant smirk, he gives her an honest smile and drops his voice.

"Sicaria, why would Cimri send a messenger with a note in place of demanding respect herself, in person? Why specifically demand a loud apology, one that could be heard from far away?" He cocks an eyebrow at her, urging her to mull the questions over.

"It wasn't anger that wrote that note, it was fear. She wanted to ensure her own safety before showing her face again. That little show was so the pup would come from hiding, not because you're right in that we need respect her. Don't be so quick to place loyalty in weakness." With that he gives her a wink and clinks his mug to hers.


Male daemon-spawn tiefling unch. rogue (eldritch scoundrel) 1 | HP: 9/9 | AC 14 T 14 FF 10 | CMB: +1, CMD: 15 | F: +1, R: +6, W: +0 (Resist 5 fire, cold, electric) | Init: +5 | Perc: +7 (darkvision, trapfinding), SM: +1 | Speed 30 | mwk rapier +5 (1d6+1/18-20), shortbow +4 (1d6/×3) | Spells: 1st Mage Armor, Vanish, 0, detect magic, ray of frost, read magic |*Active: N/A

Wolfgang starts to look at the blue book, then just starts as the enormous tengu introduces himself. As he is about to remember how to speak and shake the bird-man's hand, Vigo begins making a speech, driving away all thought of saying a word.

Perception, Nomed: 1d20 + 7 ⇒ (9) + 7 = 16

Whore Queens' garters, that's a Hell of a goose egg someone's given our new teammate. I hope that is no indication of his ability to fight, because it's apparent he hasn't been hired for his brain.


Female LE Human (Chelaxian) Warpriest (Molthuni Arsenal Chaplain) of Achaekek/1 | HP 7/9 | AC 16 T 13 FF 13 | CMB +2, CMD 15 | F: +3, R: +3, W: +3 | Init: +3 | Perc: +2, SM: +1 | Speed 30ft | Blessings: 3/3 | Spells: 1st 2/2 | Active conditions: None.

Sicaria continues to scan the room while listening to Vigo. She finally moves her head to meet Vigo’s gaze.

”I am mere curious about our contact.” The human winks back at the half-elf and resumes scanning the area.


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Male daemon-spawn tiefling unch. rogue (eldritch scoundrel) 1 | HP: 9/9 | AC 14 T 14 FF 10 | CMB: +1, CMD: 15 | F: +1, R: +6, W: +0 (Resist 5 fire, cold, electric) | Init: +5 | Perc: +7 (darkvision, trapfinding), SM: +1 | Speed 30 | mwk rapier +5 (1d6+1/18-20), shortbow +4 (1d6/×3) | Spells: 1st Mage Armor, Vanish, 0, detect magic, ray of frost, read magic |*Active: N/A

A chilling idea comes to Wolfgang. The tiefling pushes back his chair and quickly scans the bar's patrons for anyone taking an unusual interest in the group.

Unfortunately, there are people staring at them from all around the tavern thanks to Vigo's performance. Wolfgang swears under his breath and turns back to his new comrades.

"I hope Vigo's right about the motive behind that little exercise. Because the most likely alternative is that Cimri was using Vigo - using all of us, since we're with him - as a distraction. I suspect we may have been set up."

Wolfgang loosens his rapier in his sheath and rests his hand lightly on the grip. "If she doesn't return quickly, we may be well-advised to leave."


Male CE Half-Elf Oracle (Ancient Lorekeeper) 1 | HP 9/9 | AC:20 T:13 FF:17 | CMD 8 | Fort+1 Ref+3 Will+2 | Init+11 | Perc+0, SM+0 | Speed: 20ft.

Vigo purses his lips and raises his eyebrows, considering the possibility. With a glance he looks to Wolfgang. "You could be right, but why assemble four killers only to make them your enemies? It doesn't make sense. If she is that stupid though," he looks at Wolfgang with a cruel grin, but his eyes watch over the tiefling's shoulder, "we hunt her down, torture the names of any contacts we can from her, and kill her. We'll make more money taking contracts without a middleman anyway, should it come to that."

Vigo's eyes scan the crowd, tossing the ideas around in his head. While hunting her down does sound fun, it also sounds like a royal waste of time. I do hope Wolfgang is just paranoid. Come on out little Cimri... we won't bite.


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Cimri Staelish

GM Screen:
1d20 + 10 ⇒ (11) + 10 = 21

1d20 + 7 ⇒ (5) + 7 = 12
1d20 + 2 ⇒ (9) + 2 = 11
1d20 + 0 ⇒ (18) + 0 = 18
1d20 + 7 ⇒ (11) + 7 = 18

The crowd stops, somewhat puzzled at Vigo's announcement. A hearty guffaw breaks the silence as several men begin making wagers on who could love such a mismatched freak, and the tavern is soon full of drunken voices once more.

"Why indeed," a familiar voice asks from behind Vigo as the half-elf sits back down. "I can't imagine who would take something like that at face value - or who would be foolish enough to proclaim their love so publicly. But it is good to know that you'll listen to directions." Cimri steps out of the shadows, her words cold and hard enough to cut to the bone. "And if I wanted you dead, I wouldn't bother with such stupid displays. You're certainly welcome to look for contracts here without me, but from the sound of your purse I would wager that's not been working out too well for you. So can the theatrics before you draw the wrong kind of attention to us."

Intimidate vs DC 10: 1d20 + 6 ⇒ (14) + 6 = 20

As Vigo visibly cowers, Cimri turns to the others. "We've wasted enough time. Finish your drinks and let's go."


Dragon's Demand | Hell's Vengeance | Hao Jin Cataclysm | Debt to the Quah | Beyond the Halflight Path

The town of Longacre sits just outside the fringes of the Whisperwood. A few lights shine in the streets and windows, and the occasional snippet of conversation or laughter issues from open doors, but here on the outskirts of town, the night is quiet and dark. Sparse clouds scud across the sky, momentarily obscuring the dim light from the moon overhead. Across a scrubby field, barely distinguishable under the starry sky, a darkened, fort-like compound hunches in the distance.

Cimri points toward the dim structure. “That’s it - Louslik Tannery. Here’s the job: We break in, sack Ol’ Louslik’s office, take whatever’s shiny, and get out before the sheriff shows up. If we get separated, meet back at the Ash House by dawn.”

Dull moonlight glints across her dagger as she flicks it in emphasis. “If you get pinched, remember: you’re mute. Keep your mouth shut, and I’ll handle things. I got assurances that we won’t take any blame if things go south. But get chatty and I’ll let you rot.” A beat passes and her usual crooked smirk appears. “If you don’t screw things up, we’ll all be drinking on Razelago’s coin come dawn. So, what did you find out earlier today?”

Each PC can attempt one of the following skill checks to represent the reconnaissance they might have previously done:
- Climb
- Disable Device
- Knowledge (local)
- Perception
- Stealth

If you have a different skill in mind, roll it and we'll see if it's applicable to the situation.

What do you do?


Male daemon-spawn tiefling unch. rogue (eldritch scoundrel) 1 | HP: 9/9 | AC 14 T 14 FF 10 | CMB: +1, CMD: 15 | F: +1, R: +6, W: +0 (Resist 5 fire, cold, electric) | Init: +5 | Perc: +7 (darkvision, trapfinding), SM: +1 | Speed 30 | mwk rapier +5 (1d6+1/18-20), shortbow +4 (1d6/×3) | Spells: 1st Mage Armor, Vanish, 0, detect magic, ray of frost, read magic |*Active: N/A

There's one obvious choice for Wolfgang. I assume this isn't a take 10 situation, so:

Disable Device: 1d20 + 11 ⇒ (11) + 11 = 22

Dark Archive

Male NE Tengu Bloodrager (Urban) 1 | HP: 7/16 | AC: 17 (Touch: 15, Flat: 12) | CMB: +4, CMD: 16 | Fort: +4, Ref: +2, Wis: +2 | Init: +2 | Perc: +8, Sense Motive: +2, Lowlight Vision | Speed: 30 | Active Conditions: Bloodrage 6/6 Rounds

Nomed removes his armor, slipping off the stain grimed scale mail and hooking his clawed talons into brick, attempts scaling rooftops to get a better view. Perhaps it's too be away from prying eyes or his avian nature that makes feels more comfortable on the rooftops.

Climb: 1d20 + 7 ⇒ (5) + 7 = 12


Male CE Half-Elf Oracle (Ancient Lorekeeper) 1 | HP 9/9 | AC:20 T:13 FF:17 | CMD 8 | Fort+1 Ref+3 Will+2 | Init+11 | Perc+0, SM+0 | Speed: 20ft.

Vigo listens to Cimri's plan, but raises a questioning eyebrow when told not to talk. That's what someone who's afraid of getting sold out would say.

Sense Motive: 1d20 ⇒ 2
Yeah, doubt I'll get anything useful out of that.

Not being able to get a read on her, he shrugs. Just don't get caught then, but I don't trust that. "You said this is Louslik's tannery but we'll be drinking on Razelago's coin. Which is it?"

After that question, Vigo takes a moment to go over what he's learned earlier in the day gathering information amongst the locals of Longacre.

Knowledge Local: 1d20 + 4 ⇒ (13) + 4 = 17


Female LE Human (Chelaxian) Warpriest (Molthuni Arsenal Chaplain) of Achaekek/1 | HP 7/9 | AC 16 T 13 FF 13 | CMB +2, CMD 15 | F: +3, R: +3, W: +3 | Init: +3 | Perc: +2, SM: +1 | Speed 30ft | Blessings: 3/3 | Spells: 1st 2/2 | Active conditions: None.

Sicaria grits her teeth as she looks down upon the tannery.

Simple burglary. The clergy would laugh if they saw me doing this. Well, I suppose this isn’t official Mantis business, so using my skill set for this is forgivable.

Stealth: 1d20 + 3 ⇒ (13) + 3 = 16

Sicaria turns her insulated cloak inside-out, revealing a pure white color along the inside. She disappears, using the midwinter’s snow for camouflage and scouts out the tannery.

Making an assumption that it’s winter based on the February release date of Book 1 of the AP. Though canonically this one runs parallel to Hell’s Rebels, so dates get weird. Meh. GM discretion and change the flavor to be appropriate to the season.


Dragon's Demand | Hell's Vengeance | Hao Jin Cataclysm | Debt to the Quah | Beyond the Halflight Path

Wolfgang:
The gate that opens into the tannery's work yard features a simple mechanism, designed to swing open to admit delivery carts. Constructed for convenience rather than defense, the lock can be bypassed to open the gate with the pull of a lever. It won't necessarily be quiet, though.

Nomed:
The palisade walls are slick with moisture, and attempts to climb them are unsuccessful.

Vigo:
Cirmi is all business now - any emotions tucked away.

A small night crew works at the tannery. The tannery's owner, Jabral Louslik, handles the operation's accounting well into the evening. Additionally, Shaul and Pippa Umbre - the town's elderly gong farmers - come and go throughout the night, bringing loads of dung to use in softening leather.

Sicaria:
It was easy enough to find a hole in the stockade wall. The work yard beyond is largely empty, with lit lanterns illuminating both the gate and outside the office. A large dog spends most of the day sleeping near the office door, seemingly impervious to the terrible stench permeating the establishment.

"Ol' Louslik hasn't been paying his taxes like a good, law-abiding citizen should, see," Cimri explains. "Razelago says he'll pay us for helping Louslik see the errors of his ways. Now, what did you learn?"

What do you do?


Male CE Half-Elf Oracle (Ancient Lorekeeper) 1 | HP 9/9 | AC:20 T:13 FF:17 | CMD 8 | Fort+1 Ref+3 Will+2 | Init+11 | Perc+0, SM+0 | Speed: 20ft.

"There's a night crew we can expect to run into, two old men. Shaul and Pippa Umbre, they haul dung." Vigo grins, "I don't think two elderly s*!% carriers will be a problem. Jabral Louslik, the owner of the tannery, works well into the night and he's liable to be there as well when we hit the place."

Vigo bites his bottom lip in thought, then looks to his companions. "And if we're seen, what then? Do we kill them? If we leave them alive, we don't exactly blend in. Between Sicaria's scar, Nomed's, well, everything. And my..." his voice trails off into a chuckle, "and my everything as well, we're all quite recognizable. Plundering a bit of tax money isn't worth outing ourselves as criminals. Disguises perhaps?" The trademark sadistic grin returns to Vigo's face. "Killing or kidnapping would keep our names clean just as well."

You described the tannery as "fort-like." Is it surrounded by walls? If so, how tall?

Dark Archive

Male NE Tengu Bloodrager (Urban) 1 | HP: 7/16 | AC: 17 (Touch: 15, Flat: 12) | CMB: +4, CMD: 16 | Fort: +4, Ref: +2, Wis: +2 | Init: +2 | Perc: +8, Sense Motive: +2, Lowlight Vision | Speed: 30 | Active Conditions: Bloodrage 6/6 Rounds

Nomed eyes Vigo with a blank stare, his head bobbing slightly up and down as the tengu gets lost in thought the more the half elf rambles on about his reconnaissance. Seemingly satisfied the tengu clears his throat, emitting a most obnoxious sound as flem clears way from the large diaphragm..
"If I am too smuggled inside a cart full of s@++, I want extra pay pay. And my OWN tube to breathe through." the tengu simply states. Giving hint at another previous experience that sticks out well in his head


Female LE Human (Chelaxian) Warpriest (Molthuni Arsenal Chaplain) of Achaekek/1 | HP 7/9 | AC 16 T 13 FF 13 | CMB +2, CMD 15 | F: +3, R: +3, W: +3 | Init: +3 | Perc: +2, SM: +1 | Speed 30ft | Blessings: 3/3 | Spells: 1st 2/2 | Active conditions: None.

I’m guessing it’s nighttime? Wouldn’t wanna do something like this in broad daylight.

The human reappears just as quickly as she had disappeared. She taps Cimri on the shoulder. ”Do you have a map of this place?”

If she does:
Sicaria unfurls the map and leans over, pointing to specific areas as she speaks.

If she doesn’t:
Sicaria shrugs as she kneels down and makes a crude map of the tannery in the dirt, pointing out specific places as she speaks.

”There’s a hole in the wall over here, probably our best way of getting in. Courtyard’s mostly empty—lanterns are hung at the gate and in front of what seems to be an office—I’m guessing that’s where Louslik is at. From what I can tell there’s only the office’s guard dog to worry about—and the horrific smell that I can only assume to be,” Sicaria clears her throat. ”’Sh*t.’ The hound seems used to the smell from what I can tell.”

Sicaria straightens her back. ”So what’s the goal here? Break into the establishment, find Louslik, and strike the fear of Asmodeus into him so he’ll pay his share again?”

Sicaria had a few more inquiries, but she knew better than to ask personal questions of a client.


Male daemon-spawn tiefling unch. rogue (eldritch scoundrel) 1 | HP: 9/9 | AC 14 T 14 FF 10 | CMB: +1, CMD: 15 | F: +1, R: +6, W: +0 (Resist 5 fire, cold, electric) | Init: +5 | Perc: +7 (darkvision, trapfinding), SM: +1 | Speed 30 | mwk rapier +5 (1d6+1/18-20), shortbow +4 (1d6/×3) | Spells: 1st Mage Armor, Vanish, 0, detect magic, ray of frost, read magic |*Active: N/A

Wolfgang paces as he talks, scratching his head with the tip of his tail in thought.

"The gate into the tannery's yard is no problem. The lock opens with the pull of a lever, wide enough for the delivery carts to go through. But it makes more noise than I like. It sounds like the hole in the wall that Sicaria found is our best way in. Depending on how it goes once we're inside, we may want to go out through the gates, or even if we don't, we might just open them as a noisy distraction."

Ticking items off a mental list, he adds, "I don't like the sound of that dog. A place this easy to break into either doesn't have anything worth stealing, or the people in charge are relying onsomething to keep people like us from making off with the cash box. I've got an idea how to deal with the dog, but I don't think any of you are going to like it. The good news is nobody has to hide in a cart full of s+$~. The bad news -- " he points to his boots "-- is that we all need to smell like it."

Turning to Cimri, he says, "So we're really tax collectors now? Or do you mean 'tax' collectors? It doesn't matter to me, but I like to know where I stand."


Female LE Human (Chelaxian) Warpriest (Molthuni Arsenal Chaplain) of Achaekek/1 | HP 7/9 | AC 16 T 13 FF 13 | CMB +2, CMD 15 | F: +3, R: +3, W: +3 | Init: +3 | Perc: +2, SM: +1 | Speed 30ft | Blessings: 3/3 | Spells: 1st 2/2 | Active conditions: None.

”Mask our musk so it won’t notice us? Seems like a good idea; the mutt is usually asleep from what I saw. I could probably open the gate as a distraction then sneak off through the hole in the wall when all’s said and done. Cimri, does this have to happen today, or are we allowed some time to prepare? I know of a spell that might help us—well, me.”

Funnily enough, I can actually prep negate aroma (unique thing for worshipers of Achaekek), I just didn’t today.


Cimri Staelish

"We're doing this at night for a reason," Cimri explains with long-suffering patience. "If you're that worried, wrap some cloth around your face. But Louslik can't pay taxes if he's dead."

She looks at Nomed in horror. "There is no way I am getting into a cart full of night soil," she says vehemently. "Besides, the gong farmers pick up everything in pots."

"I've seen that hole you're talking about, Sicaria, and we won't fit through there. We're not slips."

"As for why this place might seem so easy to get into? Well, that might have to do with the smell - same as why it's so far outside town. And that same smell will mask ours pretty well, don't you think? I'd be more worried about the dog hearing us." She pauses, then grins. "We're not 'tax collectors', nor are we tax collectors. Razelago says he's got connections to the local government, so think of it as mercenary work. And for the s&$+ we're dealing with, it pays well." She grins again at her joke.

"And no, tonight's the night. Is everyone ready?"


Female LE Human (Chelaxian) Warpriest (Molthuni Arsenal Chaplain) of Achaekek/1 | HP 7/9 | AC 16 T 13 FF 13 | CMB +2, CMD 15 | F: +3, R: +3, W: +3 | Init: +3 | Perc: +2, SM: +1 | Speed 30ft | Blessings: 3/3 | Spells: 1st 2/2 | Active conditions: None.

Sicaria cracks her neck as she looks on toward the tannery.

”Let’s hope that mutt is the only thing we’ll have to worry about.”


Male daemon-spawn tiefling unch. rogue (eldritch scoundrel) 1 | HP: 9/9 | AC 14 T 14 FF 10 | CMB: +1, CMD: 15 | F: +1, R: +6, W: +0 (Resist 5 fire, cold, electric) | Init: +5 | Perc: +7 (darkvision, trapfinding), SM: +1 | Speed 30 | mwk rapier +5 (1d6+1/18-20), shortbow +4 (1d6/×3) | Spells: 1st Mage Armor, Vanish, 0, detect magic, ray of frost, read magic |*Active: N/A

"Give me a moment and I will be."

Wolfgang steps a few yards away from the others into the shadows and pulls a small piece of cured leather out of his pouch. He says a few words while rubbing the leather between his fingers; if the others can hear him, they can tell he isn't speaking in Common or any other local language.

Inky blackness rises from the shadows to cover his feet. In moments, the black has crawled up his legs, over his torso and arms, and finally engulfs his head. The tiefling has a split-second of claustrophobia before the darkness fades, leaving him looking as he did before. The only apparent difference is that he seems slightly washed out, like a picture hung too long near a sunlit window.

Wolfgang casts mage armor (+4 to AC for an hour).

Wolfgang returns the leather to his pouch before stepping back to rejoin the group. "Ready."

Dark Archive

Male NE Tengu Bloodrager (Urban) 1 | HP: 7/16 | AC: 17 (Touch: 15, Flat: 12) | CMB: +4, CMD: 16 | Fort: +4, Ref: +2, Wis: +2 | Init: +2 | Perc: +8, Sense Motive: +2, Lowlight Vision | Speed: 30 | Active Conditions: Bloodrage 6/6 Rounds

Nomed begins reflexively adjusting the cloth wrapped tightly around his forehead, the pressure comforting against the throbbing headaches he suffers from. As the group affirms they are equipped for the mission, Nomed replies with a quick, shrill "Ready Ready!" signaling his eagerness to begin


Male CE Half-Elf Oracle (Ancient Lorekeeper) 1 | HP 9/9 | AC:20 T:13 FF:17 | CMD 8 | Fort+1 Ref+3 Will+2 | Init+11 | Perc+0, SM+0 | Speed: 20ft.

Vigo watches Wolfgang when he walks away, eyeing his ritual with curiosity. When he finishes Vigo states plainly, "you never mentioned you knew the art of magic Wolfgang."

Vigo takes a moment to himself, squatting down and looking to the tannery with a squint. After a moment he calls back to the group, "so if the hole in the wall is too narrow to squeeze through, and the gate is too noisy, we could simply go over." He rummages through his pack and withdraws from it a Folding Ladder. "If the wall is no taller than 10 feet that is. Tools like these help the less... physically inclined, such as myself."


Female LE Human (Chelaxian) Warpriest (Molthuni Arsenal Chaplain) of Achaekek/1 | HP 7/9 | AC 16 T 13 FF 13 | CMB +2, CMD 15 | F: +3, R: +3, W: +3 | Init: +3 | Perc: +2, SM: +1 | Speed 30ft | Blessings: 3/3 | Spells: 1st 2/2 | Active conditions: None.

Sicaria blinks in surprise.

”Vigo? Where were you keeping that? And why do you just carry a ladder wherever you go?”

Dark Archive

Male NE Tengu Bloodrager (Urban) 1 | HP: 7/16 | AC: 17 (Touch: 15, Flat: 12) | CMB: +4, CMD: 16 | Fort: +4, Ref: +2, Wis: +2 | Init: +2 | Perc: +8, Sense Motive: +2, Lowlight Vision | Speed: 30 | Active Conditions: Bloodrage 6/6 Rounds

Nomed chuckles at Sicarias observation, the sound raspy and metallic
"The great Vigo has many a wonderful tool tool in his arsenal. Quite lucky we are."


Male CE Half-Elf Oracle (Ancient Lorekeeper) 1 | HP 9/9 | AC:20 T:13 FF:17 | CMD 8 | Fort+1 Ref+3 Will+2 | Init+11 | Perc+0, SM+0 | Speed: 20ft.

"Oh, this?" Vigo points at the neatly folded ladder. "I was keeping it in this invention they call a bag. I also have a collapsible 10 foot plank, 50 feet of rope, and your mother's garters with me. I'd invite you to look but I trust you about as far as I can toss you, and as we've established I'm not the strongest. When I next relieve myself, will you ask where that came from too?"


Female LE Human (Chelaxian) Warpriest (Molthuni Arsenal Chaplain) of Achaekek/1 | HP 7/9 | AC 16 T 13 FF 13 | CMB +2, CMD 15 | F: +3, R: +3, W: +3 | Init: +3 | Perc: +2, SM: +1 | Speed 30ft | Blessings: 3/3 | Spells: 1st 2/2 | Active conditions: None.

Sicaria just stares at Vigo as she shakes her head.

”Like I said: all bark. Let’s just get this over with.”

Dark Archive

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Male NE Tengu Bloodrager (Urban) 1 | HP: 7/16 | AC: 17 (Touch: 15, Flat: 12) | CMB: +4, CMD: 16 | Fort: +4, Ref: +2, Wis: +2 | Init: +2 | Perc: +8, Sense Motive: +2, Lowlight Vision | Speed: 30 | Active Conditions: Bloodrage 6/6 Rounds

Confusion seems to spread on the large tengus avian features, twisting into what looks like a mixture of a scowl and a look of surprise..

"Why do you keep keep woman's underwear with you Vigo? Is this tool to distract the dog?" Nomed asks outloud, clearly not getting the implied humor


Male daemon-spawn tiefling unch. rogue (eldritch scoundrel) 1 | HP: 9/9 | AC 14 T 14 FF 10 | CMB: +1, CMD: 15 | F: +1, R: +6, W: +0 (Resist 5 fire, cold, electric) | Init: +5 | Perc: +7 (darkvision, trapfinding), SM: +1 | Speed 30 | mwk rapier +5 (1d6+1/18-20), shortbow +4 (1d6/×3) | Spells: 1st Mage Armor, Vanish, 0, detect magic, ray of frost, read magic |*Active: N/A

Wolfgang snorts. "The art of magic indeed. I've picked up a few minor tricks here and there, but nothing as reliable or effective as a blade. I didn't mention it because some people get uncomfortable around even minor magicks, so I've learned to keep the little I know to myself until it's needed."

Inspecting the folding ladder, the tiefling lets out a low whistle. "Nice bit of kit, Vigo. If we use that getting up to the top of the wall, what do we use going down? Not your garter collection?"

He turns to Cimri. "It's your show, boss. If you've got an opinion, now's the time to tell us, before these two --" he points to Vigo and Sicaria and takes on a mocking tone "-- bleed to death in the street from their pointed, cutting insults."

Wolfgang sighs. "People, we've been standing here long enough that the back of my neck is starting to itch from imagining we're being watched. May we go steal something now, please?"

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