The River Kingdom's Shadow

Game Master Mythicman19

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Part 1, A Journey Begins

The kingdom of Atropas has conquered the stolen lands. King Gertrad has beaten back enemies time and time again, from the depths of earth, to the neighbors around him, and even to the first world. Yet as his conquests mount and his legend grows, his lust for greater glories and conquests burns hotter. Even now as an air of peace begins to settle in for the first time in ages, rumors of war work their way through the kingdom. The territory know as the stolen land may be conquered but it is not tamed. There are only three real cities, and a handful of small towns. Large swaths of land from the nearly coined Blood Marches, to the hills nest the Cursed town of Varnhold are untamed and unexplored. Rich nobleman and merchants send expeditions to explore and tame these lands hoping to gain fame, fortune, and power. Those looking for coin welcome the hard work these soft men and women offer. Our story starts out in the search of those that will take on these daring tasks, in a place where everyone goes to start these expeditions, The Wench’s Final Rest.

The Rest as it’s often called is a tavern in a old barrow just outside of the copilot of Atropas. The main room is a long 100 foot by 30 foot room with smooth stone walls and floors with a tall arched ceiling. Tables are scattered haphazardly in the room, with two bar counters sitting in the middle of the room opposite of each other guarding the entrance to two storage rooms They are made of the sarcophagi that sat on the elevated pedestal of the room. It is here that several well dressed men and women sit with armed guards next to them. They will say their plans and then from those that volunteer they will choose who will work for them. The room is noisy and crowded with people as it is late and the best jobs are always saved for last.

Where are you and what are you doing as you wait for these expeditions to be announced on this late night?


F Undine [ HP: 20/20 | AC: 17 (TAC: 15, FFAC: 12) | CMB: +2, CMD: 15 | Fort: +5, Ref: +6, Will: +1 | Init: +3 | Perception +6 ] Water Dancer UnMonk 2 [ Speed 30 ft | Hydrated Vitality: 1/1 | Nereid Fascination: 1/1 | Burn: 0/5 | Waveblade +5/1d6; Unarmed Strike +5/1d6; Water Blast +5/1d6+1+2 | Active conditions: 1 str damage ]

It's been decades since Immana has set foot in a city, and she's still quite uncomfortable here, with the large gatherings of people, that unforgettably rotten smell of sewers, and all those stares pointed her way. This place is certainly no Outsea, but it reminds her of her old home all the same.

It'd taken her a while to find the tavern, the place that had been recommended to her for finding work, but now she's starting to regret it. She's been in the city for a few weeks now, coming to the tavern every few days but leaving without finding any of the jobs - or fellow jobseekers - worthwhile. Tonight, she finds herself here again, soaking in the stench of alcohol and the wandering gaze of lonely men. Leaning against a wall, Immana surveys the assembled crowd from its edge. This time, she sees some promising adventurers in the pack - hopefully there's a job worth her time tonight...


Human Ranger 2 | HP 11/18 | AC 18 T 14 FF 14 | Fort +3 Ref +7 Will +2 (+2 vs. Charm) | CMB +6 CMD 18 | Init +4 Perc +7 | Effects: None | Longbow +7 1d8 Flambard +4 1d10+3 | 8/20 Arrows 20/20 CI Arrows 20/20 Blunt

With no sign of pursuit for several days, Bob begins to relax.

Heading for the Stolen Lands was a good idea. Bandits like to stay in their own territory. Even with the animosity that Atar provokes...

Seemingly lost in his own thoughts, Bob chuckles audibly, then half-heartedly covers the sound by smoothing Vanguard's mane.

Hopefully they haven't predicted our destination. Regardless, we'll need to keep moving. Wait.... We? Interesting that I didn't immediately think about splitting up. Well, he owes me for the lost money from that job and likely any work we find here will require a good sword.

Looking sideways at Atar and grunting, Bob pulls up the hood of his cloak as they approach the outskirts of the city. His bushy, grey beard sticks out from the nondescript brown cloak and his blue eyes scan in front of them wary for anything.

Speaking for the first time in several miles, Bob pitches his voice just loud enough to be heard clearly. "We'll need the feed, the bandages, and arrows, eh? This is the best place to equip and find work in the Stolen Lands. The Rest, up that way, is the best place for those with a certain lack of respect for safety."


M div-spawn tiefling swashbuckler 1 | HP: 3/19 | AC 17 / T 14 / FF 13 | CMB: +6, CMD: 16 | F: +1, R: +7, W: 0 | Init: +4 | darkvision 60ft; Perc: +4, SM: 0 | Speed 30ft | Panache: 3/3 | Fire Healing: 1/1 | Charmed Life: 3/3 | Active conditions: 1 str dmg

After laying low for weeks and enjoying the simple pleasures of life such as hiking through the forest and avoiding bounty hunters, Atar is happy to be back to civilisation. "Ah, the stench of sewers, the disgusted looks of passersby, the overpriced goods of terrible quality! Isn't it amazing to be back to the city, old man? And I haven't seen a single wanted poster so far, so perhaps that geezer has finally accepted that his daughter is an adult capable of making her own choices.” He pats Bob on his back. "This Rest place seems perfect; let's go and make it even less respectable."

Finding a place by the counter and listening to the jobs being offered, the scantily dressed tiefling yawns and smiles at his companion. "Now, if only they would start offering decent work…we definitely need the coin. Also some dried dates — sweet burning fires, what I wouldn't give for a small box of dried dates right now…"

Sighing, he leans against the stone top, putting his weight on his elbows, and examines the crowd. "Hey, I'm not the only one people are staring at this time. There's some interesting fellows here, that's for sure…hope it's a sign that the good contracts are coming up."


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N/A Leshy Driud (Leshy Warden) 2 HP 17/17 | AC 18 t 13 f 15 | F +5 R +2 W +7 | Init. +2 | Darkvision 60' | Perception +9 | CMB +1 | CMD 13 | Spells: 1st 3/4

Brightberry and Redleaf have learned much from the travelers in this area. They have camped with a great many persons, be they adventurers, farmers, or merchants. Well, camping with them might be misleading. The people camped. Brghtberry and Redleaf took the form of local vegetation and merely listened in on their conversations.

"There it is Redleaf. 'The Rest' they called it. That's where all of the adventurers are going to look for work that pays in gold. I know. I don't like the thought of going in there and being among that many persons either. Just stick to the sides and listen. We are here to earn gold to help our people. Let's go start a revolution."

The two plant folk enter the stone tavern and instantly feel as if they're going to get trampled, lost in the sea of humanity, or thrown in the fire. The two of them head for a wall that feels more natural and watch and listen

This is very uncomfortable, but I can do this.


Human Ranger 2 | HP 11/18 | AC 18 T 14 FF 14 | Fort +3 Ref +7 Will +2 (+2 vs. Charm) | CMB +6 CMD 18 | Init +4 Perc +7 | Effects: None | Longbow +7 1d8 Flambard +4 1d10+3 | 8/20 Arrows 20/20 CI Arrows 20/20 Blunt

As Bob removes Vanguard's bit, lets him drink from the trough and makes his straps more comfortable, Bob scans the crowd looking for any unusual attention being paid to him or to the inn.

Perception: 1d20 + 6 ⇒ (8) + 6 = 14

After hitching Vanguard to the rail, Bob follows Atar inside and joins him at the bar. All the while, he is eyeing chairs along the wall. I hate exposing my back in a place like this

Awkwardly leaning against the bar with half an eye on the door and the other half scanning the patrons, he reaches up to make sure the large, wavy-bladed sword on his back is clear.

Attempting to achieve at least the appearance of comfort, he takes a seat on a stool and slides a few coins across to the bartender. "Wine. Red. Something dark and sour."

Atar Bilaruh wrote:
"There's some interesting fellows here, that's for sure…"

Bob grunts a reply. "That is an understatement. Is that a fish woman over there?" Shaking his head, he waits for his drink.


M div-spawn tiefling swashbuckler 1 | HP: 3/19 | AC 17 / T 14 / FF 13 | CMB: +6, CMD: 16 | F: +1, R: +7, W: 0 | Init: +4 | darkvision 60ft; Perc: +4, SM: 0 | Speed 30ft | Panache: 3/3 | Fire Healing: 1/1 | Charmed Life: 3/3 | Active conditions: 1 str dmg

"I…would probably not call her that. Pretty sure she'd make you swallow your tongue if she heard you. Not that you use it that often." He jokingly pokes Bob with his elbow.

"Look at that little guy. He seems like he could use a friendly face." Atar starts waving at the two leshies that just entered the room and, once he got their attention, signals for them to come sit close to him and Bob.

Diplomacy: 1d20 + 9 ⇒ (18) + 9 = 27 hey, I guess Atar does look uncannily friendly for a horned demonspawn


When scanning the area Bob you find nothing on the road near the Rest, you do see one patron sitting outside drunk and confused as he kind of mumbles to himself.

The bar itself is filled with people of all’s shapes and sizes, many humans, a decent amount of elves are there as well, you even see some other more exotic races; a few Tieflings, a couple changelings, and one very large and very loud Minotaur that is in the back of the tavern with a group of halflings playing cards. The first of the well dressed people steps forward.

A woman in fine purple robes stands on the raised platform, some 3 feet high. Everyone begins to quiet down as they realize the first of the lucrative contracts is about to start. “I am Countess Evannora, I represent a group of nobles that own a shipping company. On the East Sellen River towards Mivon a group of brigands have set up a ramshackle fort demanding toll from all who cross it. I seek those that will help us in our time of need, the pay will be 5000gold and a bonus of 1000 platinum for the head of their so called leader”

The Minotaur in the back stands up immediately sending the table flying along with a halfling, “Me and me crew of 10 will do it, I’ll tear his head off and serve it to ya on a silver platter!” before anyone else can say anything the lady puts her hand up for silence.

The woman smiles “Very well, come see me outside.” and she steps down and leaves with a host of guards followed by the Minotaur and a gang of halflings. An excited murmur goes around the bar as they leave.


Male HP:-1/15 AC:15 T:13 FF:13 F:+2 R:+5 W:+3 Perc:+6 Init:+3 Bastard Sword +5 1d10+3 CMB:+4 CMD:+14 Human Magus (Blade Bound) 1 Swashbuckler 1

Sitting at a table filled with fellow gamblers, Trakas kept his eyes on the pot. He had been in town for some time now and was making a decent amount of coin off of the locals. He enjoyed the tavern and has come to respect the workers. Every now and then he would catch a glimpse of new people coming into the tavern but he paid then no mind. He knew of the jobs that some nobleman was offering coin for but did not want to tip his hand just yet.
let me see what their hand is first before acting.


N/A Leshy Driud (Leshy Warden) 2 HP 17/17 | AC 18 t 13 f 15 | F +5 R +2 W +7 | Init. +2 | Darkvision 60' | Perception +9 | CMB +1 | CMD 13 | Spells: 1st 3/4

On seeing the horned person making friendly gestures at him and his companion, Brightberry's initial reaction was to slip off into a corner and assume vine form. After hearing the other horned person win the bid of a very well paying job with his crew of ten, Brightberry deduced that just he and Redleaf would not be enough to land any deals.

"We will need to form a larger group in order to get a job in this place. Let's go join with them, Redleaf." Redleaf gives no response or opinion. He merely follows.

While walking toward the duo, Brightberry chants a mantra to himself. A means to an end. A means to an end.

Approaching Atar and Bob are two three foot individuals. Both made out of plant material, but noticeably different from one another. The one out front looks to be made primarily out of vines twisting around one another with a few bits of greenery as decoration. He also has a few bright red berries growing from some of his smaller vines. The second creature seems to be made entirely out of leaves until he gets closer. It is only then that you notice that his leaves are used as coverings, as either clothing or armor. Most of the leaves are shades of green or brown. He has one leaf on the left side of his chest that has a red tint to it. Unlike his companion, his body looks to be a bit soft underneath.

"Hello persons. I am brightberry and this is Redleaf. Are the two of you looking for work? It seems like we are more likely to win a contract if we look more competent than the other groups. Since we don't have a cow person to tip over a table for us, a larger number of persons would seem to help." At the end of his introduction, he attempts to replicate Atar's natural smile. It seems a little wooden.


Human Ranger 2 | HP 11/18 | AC 18 T 14 FF 14 | Fort +3 Ref +7 Will +2 (+2 vs. Charm) | CMB +6 CMD 18 | Init +4 Perc +7 | Effects: None | Longbow +7 1d8 Flambard +4 1d10+3 | 8/20 Arrows 20/20 CI Arrows 20/20 Blunt

Bob scowls as the two walk over, wondering what Atar is thinking. He seems to have a knack for being in the right place. Let's see what happens.

He keeps the scowl as Brightberry begins speaking, then starts chuckling and finally can't hold in the laughter. "Cow... tipping..." He snorts suddenly, and looks around embarassed, before settling back again with his wine.

"Well done, Brightberry. You must be a bard, eh?"


The murmurs begin to get louder alternating between talk of how Reotri Ironhoof took the best job and how now that he’s gone someone else can get a crack at the best gig of the night.

A man in gleaming ornate breastplate studded in rubies and emeralds covered with fine robes is the next up. He steps onto the platform a tense air flows out from him as he stands on the platform. The whispers and murmurs begin to die down, finally he starts to speak in a loud booming voice. “I am Sir Archibald Angeline Surtova. I am looking for a group to defend and serve a startup town on the edge of the marches. The pay will be well, we must first clear out a village of monstrous creatures. All the spoils will go the those that are chosen.”

Several groups stand up and volunteer for a moment, the man pauses but chooses a group of 5 elves. They leave to talk at the bar, there is only one man left. A older half elf gentleman in robes that upon close inspection are not nearly as fancy as the other two. Only there are no guards next to him as he sits waiting to get up looking around the tavern that is now less crowded and much less boisterous.


Male HP:-1/15 AC:15 T:13 FF:13 F:+2 R:+5 W:+3 Perc:+6 Init:+3 Bastard Sword +5 1d10+3 CMB:+4 CMD:+14 Human Magus (Blade Bound) 1 Swashbuckler 1

Trakas kept his hands and eyes on the game at hand but his mind picked up some details of what was going on around him.

The money that was offered to that minotaur was a ridiculous sum and most likely will never need to be paid. The countess is offering a huge some to anyone that can help. That much money seems to me the problem...she does not have the cards to cover her bet. Raise...

The young man quickly looks up as the next person stands up and just as quickly looks back to the game.
No clue how to play...but interesting that a party of elves would be willing to take the job...raise

He sees the half elf sitting and waiting.
...well what is this. I call.

Fold
Trakis pushes his cards in and takes what he has left. Standing and walking across the room towards the half elf when...


M div-spawn tiefling swashbuckler 1 | HP: 3/19 | AC 17 / T 14 / FF 13 | CMB: +6, CMD: 16 | F: +1, R: +7, W: 0 | Init: +4 | darkvision 60ft; Perc: +4, SM: 0 | Speed 30ft | Panache: 3/3 | Fire Healing: 1/1 | Charmed Life: 3/3 | Active conditions: 1 str dmg

Atar bows to the leshies. "It is very nice to meet you, Brightberry and Redleaf. I am Atar and my friend here is Bob…and I guess we could try tipping a table together, but it wouldn't be the same without the halfling flying along with it. Like, it wouldn't be so impressive without that." He cracks his neck joints and frowns. "Crap, there goes the second job and nothing for us so far…I guess we need to take a more aggressive approach. What are your specialties? I try to solve things by talking, and if that fails I'm not at all bad with my rapier; Bob is a pretty good shot with his bow and knows his way around any type of wilderness."

When Atar sees the remaining half-elf looking at the crowd, he claps and rubs his hands together. "All right, that's our cue, folks. Let's go and get ourselves a nice contract!" He starts confidently strutting towards the gentleman. If he feels Bob, Brightberry or Redleaf are not following, he turns back and signals for them to follow him.


Human Ranger 2 | HP 11/18 | AC 18 T 14 FF 14 | Fort +3 Ref +7 Will +2 (+2 vs. Charm) | CMB +6 CMD 18 | Init +4 Perc +7 | Effects: None | Longbow +7 1d8 Flambard +4 1d10+3 | 8/20 Arrows 20/20 CI Arrows 20/20 Blunt

Bob stands and follows Atar. Good. I was about to suggest a bit of initiative, as this one seems a bit u sure of himself.


N/A Leshy Driud (Leshy Warden) 2 HP 17/17 | AC 18 t 13 f 15 | F +5 R +2 W +7 | Init. +2 | Darkvision 60' | Perception +9 | CMB +1 | CMD 13 | Spells: 1st 3/4

Brightberry looks to Redleaf, who seems to shrug. His leaves raise up and rustle a little anyway. The two woodsmen follow their new persons.


F Undine [ HP: 20/20 | AC: 17 (TAC: 15, FFAC: 12) | CMB: +2, CMD: 15 | Fort: +5, Ref: +6, Will: +1 | Init: +3 | Perception +6 ] Water Dancer UnMonk 2 [ Speed 30 ft | Hydrated Vitality: 1/1 | Nereid Fascination: 1/1 | Burn: 0/5 | Waveblade +5/1d6; Unarmed Strike +5/1d6; Water Blast +5/1d6+1+2 | Active conditions: 1 str damage ]

Immana takes note of the old bearded man and his...goat person?...companion as they come in, and spots them looking her way. She initially pays them no mind, but then a couple of leshys join them, forming a rather strange but oddly capable-looking crew. Growing bored of the waiting and figuring this is as good of a chance as she'll get to get out of town tonight, she leaves her spot and starts slowly making her way towards the stage, just as the group get up and head towards the same place themselves.


The older half elf man starts to get up on the platform as you all start to make your way to it. The tavern starts to quiet down as he ascends but then the chatter returns to its loud state as it was in before the jobs were announced. The man has a strained looks as he looks around seeing he has next to no ones attention, until he sees you guys coming forward.

With a smile he takes a step down and calls out to the group starting to assemble in front of him. “It seems someone is interested in helping me, my name is Cornelius Wotron. I’m a scholar of ancient history. I’m looking for some help getting to and delving a ruin that was unearthed just south of Atropas.”


N/A Leshy Driud (Leshy Warden) 2 HP 17/17 | AC 18 t 13 f 15 | F +5 R +2 W +7 | Init. +2 | Darkvision 60' | Perception +9 | CMB +1 | CMD 13 | Spells: 1st 3/4

Upon seeing the undine approaching the stage with the rest of the group, Redleaf breaks from the pack and approaches her. As he walks up to get he looks up the remaining feet from his face to hers and he peels the red leaf from his chest and holds it up to her with a smile.

Brightberry walks toward Cornelius and looks from him to Atar and Bob.


F Undine [ HP: 20/20 | AC: 17 (TAC: 15, FFAC: 12) | CMB: +2, CMD: 15 | Fort: +5, Ref: +6, Will: +1 | Init: +3 | Perception +6 ] Water Dancer UnMonk 2 [ Speed 30 ft | Hydrated Vitality: 1/1 | Nereid Fascination: 1/1 | Burn: 0/5 | Waveblade +5/1d6; Unarmed Strike +5/1d6; Water Blast +5/1d6+1+2 | Active conditions: 1 str damage ]

Immana isn't really sure how to react to the little leshy holding out its leaf at her. After a moment of hesitation, she pops a little smile and gently takes the leaf before moving up with the leshy to join the others speaking with Cornelius.


M div-spawn tiefling swashbuckler 1 | HP: 3/19 | AC 17 / T 14 / FF 13 | CMB: +6, CMD: 16 | F: +1, R: +7, W: 0 | Init: +4 | darkvision 60ft; Perc: +4, SM: 0 | Speed 30ft | Panache: 3/3 | Fire Healing: 1/1 | Charmed Life: 3/3 | Active conditions: 1 str dmg

Atar bows and smiles. "Well met, Mr Wotron – may I call you Cornelius? I am Atar and these are my associates," he gestures towards his back without turning, unaware of the arrival of the undine and the other human. "As you can see, we're a diverse bunch, which means we're prepared for pretty much anything these ruins can throw at us. Can you tell a bit more about what you expect us to find there? Monsters, traps, relics of indescribable historic importance?"

Diplomacy: 1d20 + 9 ⇒ (11) + 9 = 20


Human Ranger 2 | HP 11/18 | AC 18 T 14 FF 14 | Fort +3 Ref +7 Will +2 (+2 vs. Charm) | CMB +6 CMD 18 | Init +4 Perc +7 | Effects: None | Longbow +7 1d8 Flambard +4 1d10+3 | 8/20 Arrows 20/20 CI Arrows 20/20 Blunt

Bob watches the arrival of the undine warily. I suppose we can sort out team members later. She can listen as well as us.

He cringes a bit when Atar unintentionally includes her as a companion, but says nothing for now.

Addressing their potential employer, he adds "As well, why is it that you think this historical place needs to be awoken?"


He chuckles a weird raspy laugh “Yes please do call me Cornelius. And these ruins are interestingly enough, beneath a small town. This town has quite a lot of history and I’m hoping in the depths of the castle we can find some artifacts that would prove my hypothesis! It would change our perception of Golarion history! And to be quite honest I don’t know exactly what kind of things to expect in this ruin.” He pulls a notepad from his robes and begins to look through it.

Perception DC 16 for Atar and Bob 20 for everyone else:

You notice that the notes on the pages are a little strange written in all sorts of languages and haphazardly, maybe he’s a little crazier than he lets on?

He finds a page and stops flipping. “So this town is called Thornkeep, it seems to be quite old. With Goblins once ruling it in the Empire of Zogg, to Taldor colonists, and if I’m correct it should in its depths be Azlanti! The ruin itself is a mystery but the town is a den of thieves and cutthroats, even if I were to make it through the ruin somehow I’m sure I would be killed leaving, that’s where you come in!”

History DC 20:

You know that the Azlanti were an ancient empire of humans who once ruled before Earthfall an apocalyptic event that destroyed them and the continent they ruled from. You’ve heard of the Empire of Zogg, as it was once a goblin empire in the River Kingdoms ruled by great barghasts.

geography DC 15:

You’ve heard of the town of Thornkeep, and it is in fact full of thieves and cutthroats. With the rise of Atropas many bandits fled the King’s justice for fear of losing their head. Thornkeep has turned into a den of ex-bandits and current bandits. Things are dangerous in this little town and the path to it is just as bad.


Human Ranger 2 | HP 11/18 | AC 18 T 14 FF 14 | Fort +3 Ref +7 Will +2 (+2 vs. Charm) | CMB +6 CMD 18 | Init +4 Perc +7 | Effects: None | Longbow +7 1d8 Flambard +4 1d10+3 | 8/20 Arrows 20/20 CI Arrows 20/20 Blunt

Perception: 1d20 + 6 ⇒ (9) + 6 = 15
Know(Geo): 1d20 + 5 ⇒ (4) + 5 = 9


N/A Leshy Driud (Leshy Warden) 2 HP 17/17 | AC 18 t 13 f 15 | F +5 R +2 W +7 | Init. +2 | Darkvision 60' | Perception +9 | CMB +1 | CMD 13 | Spells: 1st 3/4

Brightberry
Perception: 1d20 + 8 ⇒ (14) + 8 = 22
Redleaf
Perception: 1d20 + 2 ⇒ (19) + 2 = 21

Brightberry and Redleaf exchange looks, you think, after Cornelius puts his notebook away.

Druidic:
"Not sure if we can trust this guy. But if he can lead us to a place that we can find gold..."


M div-spawn tiefling swashbuckler 1 | HP: 3/19 | AC 17 / T 14 / FF 13 | CMB: +6, CMD: 16 | F: +1, R: +7, W: 0 | Init: +4 | darkvision 60ft; Perc: +4, SM: 0 | Speed 30ft | Panache: 3/3 | Fire Healing: 1/1 | Charmed Life: 3/3 | Active conditions: 1 str dmg

"The Azlanti, you say? Impressive!" Says Atar, who has absolutely no idea who are the Azlanti. "So, if I'm getting what you're saying, you want us to go there, explore these ruins, collect whatever artifacts we find, and keep them away from the Thornkeep Thugs." He looks up, estimating what would be a fair price for the job, and continues: "and what are you willing to offer for this whole enterprise, so vital to your research?"

Perception: 1d20 + 4 ⇒ (7) + 4 = 11


Human Ranger 2 | HP 11/18 | AC 18 T 14 FF 14 | Fort +3 Ref +7 Will +2 (+2 vs. Charm) | CMB +6 CMD 18 | Init +4 Perc +7 | Effects: None | Longbow +7 1d8 Flambard +4 1d10+3 | 8/20 Arrows 20/20 CI Arrows 20/20 Blunt

More Bandits? I should be surprised, but this is the River Kingdoms, after all

"Bandits. Booby traps. Ancient malfunctioning magic." Bob ticks the points off on his fingers.

Bob looks around at the pub full of disinterested adventurers. "From the look of it, this isn't the first time you've pitched this adventure, eh?"

Not so quietly, he whispers to Atar. "Perhaps he's got a reputation, eh? Could be a set up or a wild goose."


Cornelius looks to the fielding man smiling like he stole the room. “Yes you have it right!” he turns to Bob “I’ve been trying to fun this expedition for quite some time, but for your reward you will be 10,000 gold pieces... each. The funding is what’s left of my family’s inheritance.” he spreads his arms wide, “Seems like a nice group you have here, so please what are all your names?”


Human Ranger 2 | HP 11/18 | AC 18 T 14 FF 14 | Fort +3 Ref +7 Will +2 (+2 vs. Charm) | CMB +6 CMD 18 | Init +4 Perc +7 | Effects: None | Longbow +7 1d8 Flambard +4 1d10+3 | 8/20 Arrows 20/20 CI Arrows 20/20 Blunt

Sense Motive: 1d20 + 2 ⇒ (8) + 2 = 10

Bob gives the man a level look, taking in his not-so-fancy clothing, but saying nothing.

Probably senile. The best idea would be to find this man's family and return him to them. Taking whatever money he might have would be wrong. Surprising that he has any left if he keeps coming to establishments like this on his own.


M div-spawn tiefling swashbuckler 1 | HP: 3/19 | AC 17 / T 14 / FF 13 | CMB: +6, CMD: 16 | F: +1, R: +7, W: 0 | Init: +4 | darkvision 60ft; Perc: +4, SM: 0 | Speed 30ft | Panache: 3/3 | Fire Healing: 1/1 | Charmed Life: 3/3 | Active conditions: 1 str dmg

Atar blinks in silence for a second. "That is…a generous offer, Cornelius. But what would happen in case we would not be able to find any of the artifacts you believe are there?"

He starts turning, beaming his best, gentlest smile. "Also, I need a short moment to confer with my friends here…we never accept a job before making sure…uhm…everyone agrees to do it. You know, saves some time later on, makes sure morale stays high, that sort of thing! Just a minute!"

He looks back to see Bob's reaction and only now realises that the undine and the black-eyed human were listening in the whole time. He says out loud: "Well, my friends, you heard the man!" And then, whispering "What do you think? Either he's insane or there's something he's not telling us or both."


Bob you get a feel that he is just extremely excited about this, and that everything he is saying is genuine.

He kind of stops and blinks when you say that Atar, “Well I hadn’t thought of that to be honest. There is most certainly something down there it may not be of historical value but it will nonetheless help finance future endeavors. But a job done is a job paid, you’ll receive your pay when the deed is done no matter the circumstances.”


Human Ranger 2 | HP 11/18 | AC 18 T 14 FF 14 | Fort +3 Ref +7 Will +2 (+2 vs. Charm) | CMB +6 CMD 18 | Init +4 Perc +7 | Effects: None | Longbow +7 1d8 Flambard +4 1d10+3 | 8/20 Arrows 20/20 CI Arrows 20/20 Blunt

Bob, feeling sorry for the old man, attempts to smile comfortingly as he allows Atar to lead them off to the side.

"Let's hear about our new friends first, eh? What are your names? If you're looking to join forces, let's hear what you have to add to the group."


F Undine [ HP: 20/20 | AC: 17 (TAC: 15, FFAC: 12) | CMB: +2, CMD: 15 | Fort: +5, Ref: +6, Will: +1 | Init: +3 | Perception +6 ] Water Dancer UnMonk 2 [ Speed 30 ft | Hydrated Vitality: 1/1 | Nereid Fascination: 1/1 | Burn: 0/5 | Waveblade +5/1d6; Unarmed Strike +5/1d6; Water Blast +5/1d6+1+2 | Active conditions: 1 str damage ]

kn (history): 1d20 + 5 ⇒ (2) + 5 = 7
perception: 1d20 + 5 ⇒ (20) + 5 = 25 lol ok, great start...

Immana allows herself to be led off by the two in front before she can answer the half-elf. "Immana. Might not look like it, but I'm a trained fighter. Now...this half-elf here, do you get the impression that he's rather...unhinged, too?" She makes sure that she speaks quietly so that he can't hear.


N/A Leshy Driud (Leshy Warden) 2 HP 17/17 | AC 18 t 13 f 15 | F +5 R +2 W +7 | Init. +2 | Darkvision 60' | Perception +9 | CMB +1 | CMD 13 | Spells: 1st 3/4

As Immana speaks to the group, Redleaf stares at her without moving. Others nod or make sounds of confirmation. Redleaf stares stock still.

Brightberry, on the other hand, nods and says, "Maybe crazy, but he does know where there are ruins. That's enough for me. Even if he can't pay as much as he says." After a slight pause, he picks his head back up to look into the faces of everyone else again and says, "I'm Brightberry. This is Redleaf. I can shape and talk with nature to help me. I can also heal hurt things. Redleaf is my trusty backpack caddie. Redleaf, stop staring at the mammal. He is very good at helping others. He can use wands and things like that."

Looking at the group he says, "You with the horns have a sword like that straw haired man. And you with the gray in your face hair have a bow. We seem to be heavy with the fighting type. I will be our source magic."

This is harder than I thought. Not only does this plant person think differently, but he only has an int of 8. I had to retype several of my previous sentences, lol.


M div-spawn tiefling swashbuckler 1 | HP: 3/19 | AC 17 / T 14 / FF 13 | CMB: +6, CMD: 16 | F: +1, R: +7, W: 0 | Init: +4 | darkvision 60ft; Perc: +4, SM: 0 | Speed 30ft | Panache: 3/3 | Fire Healing: 1/1 | Charmed Life: 3/3 | Active conditions: 1 str dmg

Atar nods his head when Brightberry speaks. "That's a pretty good point. Even if it turns out he doesn't have the gold, there's bound to be some valuable stuff down there that's worth our time. The guy could be setting us up, but he also seems pretty nice? In a weird and harmless kind of way?" FYI, Atar's sense motive is not very good

@Brightberry: you're doing a great job, btw. Loving Brightberry and Redleaf so far.


Human Ranger 2 | HP 11/18 | AC 18 T 14 FF 14 | Fort +3 Ref +7 Will +2 (+2 vs. Charm) | CMB +6 CMD 18 | Init +4 Perc +7 | Effects: None | Longbow +7 1d8 Flambard +4 1d10+3 | 8/20 Arrows 20/20 CI Arrows 20/20 Blunt

Bob nods as he crosses his arms. "If we truly are going to do this, some spellcasting and healing will definitely be good to have. Another warrior is always useful, as well."

He looks back at the old man with some concern. "I am concerned about following the research of a possibly senile old man, however. I say let's escort him back to his house and get him to show us his maps, then we can make a decision."

Hopefully he'll have some family at home that will give us a better read on his situation


F Undine [ HP: 20/20 | AC: 17 (TAC: 15, FFAC: 12) | CMB: +2, CMD: 15 | Fort: +5, Ref: +6, Will: +1 | Init: +3 | Perception +6 ] Water Dancer UnMonk 2 [ Speed 30 ft | Hydrated Vitality: 1/1 | Nereid Fascination: 1/1 | Burn: 0/5 | Waveblade +5/1d6; Unarmed Strike +5/1d6; Water Blast +5/1d6+1+2 | Active conditions: 1 str damage ]

Immana looks down at her hand, then back at Brightberry. "Uh. Your friend Redleaf here gave me his red leaf...should I give it back? Is that why he's staring at me?"


N/A Leshy Driud (Leshy Warden) 2 HP 17/17 | AC 18 t 13 f 15 | F +5 R +2 W +7 | Init. +2 | Darkvision 60' | Perception +9 | CMB +1 | CMD 13 | Spells: 1st 3/4

Turning back to Immana, Brightberry shifts the vines that form his face in a very disconcerting way. "Hmm. I've never seen him do that before. I've wondered why he had just the one, but didn't know what it meant. No, I think I'd keep it. It might mean something."

He then looks at Redleaf, who shifts his mass about a bit which causes his remaining leaves to rustle a bit. Brightberry chuckles and looks back to the half elf.


As you guys are talking for a minute or two, two men who look strikingly similar are whispering back and forth with each other looking at the elder man.

perception DC 13:
you overhear some snipers of the conversations. “....I heard 10,000 gold each.” “What?..... that’s insane!......maybe we should....” “Those guts haven’t gone back.... maybe they aren’t interested”

The older man is reading his notes and marking pages as you talk looking up smiling at your group from time to time.


Human Ranger 2 | HP 11/18 | AC 18 T 14 FF 14 | Fort +3 Ref +7 Will +2 (+2 vs. Charm) | CMB +6 CMD 18 | Init +4 Perc +7 | Effects: None | Longbow +7 1d8 Flambard +4 1d10+3 | 8/20 Arrows 20/20 CI Arrows 20/20 Blunt

Perception: 1d20 + 6 ⇒ (3) + 6 = 9

Distracted by the crush of new faces, Bob notices nothing.


Male HP:-1/15 AC:15 T:13 FF:13 F:+2 R:+5 W:+3 Perc:+6 Init:+3 Bastard Sword +5 1d10+3 CMB:+4 CMD:+14 Human Magus (Blade Bound) 1 Swashbuckler 1

The young man stops as the half elf makes his announcement. He listens and remains quiet, watching those around him.
He looks directly at two men as the whisper back and forth. Then intervenes himself into the conversation with the half elf.
Perception: 1d20 + 2 ⇒ (14) + 2 = 16
My apologies, Lord Wotron...Perhaps this conversation would be best continued in private. Large sums of money have a way of attracting unwanted attention.

He steps back to allow the old historian room to lead the way. His eyes fall on the two men and he nods towards them in a kind manner. Mouthing the words as he waits the group to depart....gentlemen...


M div-spawn tiefling swashbuckler 1 | HP: 3/19 | AC 17 / T 14 / FF 13 | CMB: +6, CMD: 16 | F: +1, R: +7, W: 0 | Init: +4 | darkvision 60ft; Perc: +4, SM: 0 | Speed 30ft | Panache: 3/3 | Fire Healing: 1/1 | Charmed Life: 3/3 | Active conditions: 1 str dmg

Perception: 1d20 + 4 ⇒ (9) + 4 = 13

Atar follows Trakas immediately. "Indeed, my friend is a wise man, Cornelius. Sorry about the wait…but I can definitely say the whole group is very eager to help you with your research. We'd be honoured, actually, and can't wait to hear more about it." The tiefling extends a hand to help the half-elf stand up and then offers to link arms with him. "Here, you must be tired after a long day of study and work. The Azlanti! So exciting!"


Cornelius nods to Trakas “Yes, yes you make a good point.” then looks to Atar and walks with him out of the tavern. “Splendid! Then I shall take you back to my cottage we can start planning for our expedition immediately! Yes it is so exciting, this could change our very understanding of the Age of Legends. Are you a scholar yourself? I don’t know many scholars with your temperament, and appearance.”

He leads the group out of the tavern, while the two men stare at your group as you leave. if you want to do something you can, otherwise Cornelius will lead you to his cottage a little ways down the road toward the countryside.


Human Ranger 2 | HP 11/18 | AC 18 T 14 FF 14 | Fort +3 Ref +7 Will +2 (+2 vs. Charm) | CMB +6 CMD 18 | Init +4 Perc +7 | Effects: None | Longbow +7 1d8 Flambard +4 1d10+3 | 8/20 Arrows 20/20 CI Arrows 20/20 Blunt

As the party leaves the tavern, Bob will note the direction the party is travelling, then tap Atar on the shoulder.

With a nod of his head back toward the door of the tavern, Bob will hang back, while he cinches Vanguard's straps and unties him from the hitching rail.

Doing his best to stay out of sight, he will take his time, watching to see if the men follow, then mount up and follow the group.

Stealth: 1d20 + 6 ⇒ (2) + 6 = 8

Survival(Track): 1d20 + 6 + 1 ⇒ (9) + 6 + 1 = 16 (If needed to locate the party)


You see only one man come out, he goes to the side of the tavern to relieve himself, nobody else comes out. You easily catch up to the group, the trail is quite easy to follow.


Human Ranger 2 | HP 11/18 | AC 18 T 14 FF 14 | Fort +3 Ref +7 Will +2 (+2 vs. Charm) | CMB +6 CMD 18 | Init +4 Perc +7 | Effects: None | Longbow +7 1d8 Flambard +4 1d10+3 | 8/20 Arrows 20/20 CI Arrows 20/20 Blunt

After catching up to the party, Bob dismounts and offers Lord Wotron a ride back to his cottage.


N/A Leshy Driud (Leshy Warden) 2 HP 17/17 | AC 18 t 13 f 15 | F +5 R +2 W +7 | Init. +2 | Darkvision 60' | Perception +9 | CMB +1 | CMD 13 | Spells: 1st 3/4

Walking away from the tavern, Brightberry looks around at all of the man-made buildings.

This is just the beginning. Soon, so many humanoids will be living in this area, that there will be very little nature left. Already, forests are being cut back.

Redleaf walks along, humming a little song. As the walk continues, he begins to drift farther and farther away from Brightberry, and more toward Immana. Any time she looks at him, his leaves shiver.


M div-spawn tiefling swashbuckler 1 | HP: 3/19 | AC 17 / T 14 / FF 13 | CMB: +6, CMD: 16 | F: +1, R: +7, W: 0 | Init: +4 | darkvision 60ft; Perc: +4, SM: 0 | Speed 30ft | Panache: 3/3 | Fire Healing: 1/1 | Charmed Life: 3/3 | Active conditions: 1 str dmg

Atar nods at Bob, understanding what the ranger was about to do, and tries to keep Cornelius happy and relaxed. "Oh, not a scholar, no, no…but I'm always eager to learn more about the world," he says. He listens carefully to whatever tidbits of information Cornelius gives about his research.

When Bob comes back, he helps getting the half-elf on the back of the horse.

Ready to move forward when everyone else is too.


Cornelius gets on the horse relatively easily without much help, as you travel he starts to talk first about his youth and how he became a scholar, then into why he loves history, then starts to ramble. Diplomacy check of 19 to focus his rambling towards what you want to know as he just starts rambling.

if anyone else has anything they would like to try to do please says so by tomorrow morning, otherwise I will move the story along after this is resolved. Just a heads up.


F Undine [ HP: 20/20 | AC: 17 (TAC: 15, FFAC: 12) | CMB: +2, CMD: 15 | Fort: +5, Ref: +6, Will: +1 | Init: +3 | Perception +6 ] Water Dancer UnMonk 2 [ Speed 30 ft | Hydrated Vitality: 1/1 | Nereid Fascination: 1/1 | Burn: 0/5 | Waveblade +5/1d6; Unarmed Strike +5/1d6; Water Blast +5/1d6+1+2 | Active conditions: 1 str damage ]

belated perception: 1d20 + 5 ⇒ (5) + 5 = 10 wow
knowledge (nature) for leshy shenanigans: 1d20 + 6 ⇒ (9) + 6 = 15

Immana doesn't notice the strange men, so she's not quite clear on why they're suddenly leaving - but if she wants to stay on the job, she doesn't have much choice, so she joins the others on the walk to this crazy half-elf's home. She does, however, notice Redleaf shaking oddly, and she moves over to chat with Brightberry. Speaking rather blankly in Sylvan, she asks, «Is your friend there cold or sick or something? He seems to keep shaking. I don't think he was like this inside.»

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