Carnadine will wait on the top of the tower with the loaded ballista. Voyra will wait at the bottom of the tower keeping him aware of the goings on.
Is Deimus doing anything special for short rest?
Didn't want to assume we'd get the short rest. :)
Deimus sighs a metallic relief as the others settle in the towers. This is what Kobold life was all about: clutch, survival, tinkering; he thought as he set up shop.
He gives a long look at his espresso tools, wishing to work on that contraption instead, but survival came first. Well, clutch came first, but the sounds of friendly teasing made it sounds as though that was covered nicely.
Sitting on the floor, he lays his tools flat on a grey piece of canvas, then picks up a small mirror and fixes it on a thin rod that latches on his head near his eye, allowing him to look at his mangled plating. He sets up a second mirror on the floor for hard to view angles.
Satisfied, he spends a bit of time removing debris, cleaning the plates, then sands all the asperities he can locate, starting with his back plate, which he ends up removing to work on it. The spikes had done their work splendidly, and fixing their art took most of his time.
As he works, he hums in tune with the tinkering sound, and his work becomes a performance. The steady drumming and grating, combined with the soft humming, sounds reassuring. Something is going on. People work and things get improved. There is great hope to be found in these sounds.
Once everything felt more or less smooth, then he removed all the plating and worked on fixing the inner rods and tubes. This was tense fine-tuning work, but he managed to get most crystals and tubes to resonate properly.
He puts the plating back carefully, finding joy in their clicking in place seamlessly, then picks up an oil tank with a narrow funnel and meticulously drops tiny beads in every joint to prevent shafing.
Once all this is done, he gives himself a minute to doze off, closing all senses with an inner timer for a single minute. He feels fresh when he resets and gets up to put on his tattered cloak.
Saying nothing, he walks to the door and waits there, thinking of Zobeck.
HD short rest + Song of Rest: 5d8 + 1d6 ⇒ (4, 3, 3, 7, 4) + (5) = 26
Song of rest applies to all who can hear the tinkering music.
Hrungnir looked at the Weapon with a professional eye. Given that he was a smith himself, who had forged his own arms and armor, he was qualified to appraise it. ”Starmetal.” He said, thoughtfully. ”Must be a story about where ye came by it. Can’t find that in any mine I know of.” He cracked a smile at that. ”So...?”
For a moment, Raseri is able to forget about her worries and insecurities.
"Carnadine, Kjeta, and I helped the guard reclaim the wall the night after all of this started. There were some fey up there, along with that hound we saw at the theatre. I killed the hound and used one of his bones to make the handle. One of the fey got away, but the other surrendered to us, and I claimed his weapons by right of victory. I do not use darts or sabers, so I reforged the saber into Hugrekki there. I turned the darts into wire and an ingot. Some of the wire got used for the inlay on my other weapons."
Raseri lays out her other arms, telling Hrungnir their names as she shows them off. All of them have a similar feel to them, relying on clean lines and expert craftsmanship for their beauty. The Inlay and the engraving on them is of an older northlands style, but there's also hints of fey influence, with images of trees and mountains hidden in the background of the bold, geometric knotwork and runes.
While Hrungnir is inspecting them, Raseri tells him of how she forged the weapons and her armor. She also mentions other works she has done. Some menial and demeaning, but others were for works of art. As she speaks, she finds her eyes going to the runes on his armor, and after a few minutes, she asks about them.
"What of those runes you wear, Master Smith? I have not seen their like before."
”Clan-trade.” He said absentmindedly, as he looked over her work. ”Born into it. Should I have a child, so shall he or she learn the secrets. If they’re worthy.” He finished, saying it as if though it were all a fact that couldn’t be argued, such as saying the sky was blue. ”Good craftsmanship. And not just for a human. Ye can tell when someone cares about what they do. Good on ye.” He said. ”Worth being proud of. My smithing was always secondary to making runes. When we go home ye she keep at it, lass. Everyone should have a proper trade to pass down.”
Init... HP ...Status
Kjeta... 75 ...7 HD spent
Lexi... 63 ...shadow touched
Carn... 72 ...1 HD spent
Ras... 48 ...3 HD spent
Deimus... 37 ...5 HD spent
Hru... 83 ...5 HD spent
Ras can roll 1d6 from song of rest still.
Time passes slowly for those who aren't recovering. Your last morning was in Zobeck...some 20 hours ago. Exhaustion is sure to set in soon. But Haylcaster's shadow road beckons...
You note a few signs of life, a strange lizard (no larger than a shoe) black and bright blue with insect antennae slowly meanders around the pits. You hear a flock of what might be bats or birds rustling in the dried out, crispy leaves of the nearby park's trees. Something scratches within the walls of the tower...rats or cockroaches likely.
Thirst is becoming an issue, your waterskins nearly empty...but your hunger is still sated from the woodlands magic of Lexi.
Nothing comes to swallow your souls or disturb your catching of breath...but a few odd twitches from the dead giants tells you perhaps lingering here much longer isn't a great idea.
Carnadine, it occurs to you that with the right tools the ballista could be dismounted from the floor and transported. You would also need a wagon to hitch to Voyra, of course.
I figured I'd be too far away, but I'm not one to turn down free healing!
Song of Healing: 1d6 ⇒ 4
Raseri sees the others are ready and quickly gathers up her weapons and puts them back in their places. The maul stays in hand, the long haft balanced on Raseri's uninjured shoulder. Seeing the twitching of the giants, she figures that the sooner they leave, the better.
"We should leave 'fore the giants have wakened from the long slumber," she says before taking up a position in the front with Lexi.
"Oh, they'll probably rise as undead!" said Lexi in her new, not-at-all-wierd chipper voice.
Carnadine knew how to stand guard. He had decades of experience standing guard, in the cold, in the harsh sun, in the blackest night. He randomly paced the tower, randomly surveying the ground and sky knowing that owls are silent fliers and could bring a fight with little noise. It had been a decade since he was required to stand guard, since Marena had made Voyra undead and him a captain in Her knighthood.
His thoughts wondered at first toward his companions. Deimus showed real mettle against the dragon. Climbing the crumbling stairs to get closer, and then frightening the dragon away twice! He is a true warrior despite his small, gearforged exterior. The ghost knight found Hrungnir to be a stereotypical dwarf, encased in armor, ready to fight, with common sense. Fortunately, he could count on them.
The Thorsdottir was all over the place, able to wield lighting and thunder, but skittish as soon as the fight gets difficult. What Thor sees in her, he certainly does not know. And that Lexi Shadow, where had she gone. First, she was all fight and kill, and now she follows and obeys the Thorsdottir like a puppy. Strange. Both of them. And unreliable, which is dangerous in a battle.
Occasionally, Voyra telepathically shared the conversation of his companions with Carnadine. Nothing extraordinary. At least, they're not descending into terror.
Changing subjects in his mind, he stares at the wagon at the bottom of a pit right after staring at the ballista. Then, he looks at both in succession gauging their size and weight. Siege equipment. Would they get the opportunity to use it? It would take awhile to lift and place it. He would need all of his companions, not just some of them to get it done.
After about an hour (near the end of the short rest) the Knight Captain Incorporeal returns to the base of the tower with the companions. "I've an idea that would take all of us and quite a bit of work. I think we can mount that ballista on the top of the tower to that wagon at the bottom of the pit. It would take us a couple of hours to get both to ground level. Voyra could pull the wagon. It would give us some siege equipment that would threaten even a giant. Anyone interested?"
Kjeta's wagon got left behind. This one's at the bottom of a pit.
"I do not think it is wise. The giants stir already and we do not know the true extent of the damage to the wagon. It could be easily fixed, or it could take much longer than you are expecting. We should keep moving."
"Yes, and hopefully make history!" adds Deimus, now feeling rested, somewhat.
"We debated taking ten minutes, now we’re thinking of staying longer to carry a ballista around. We will look like strange ambassadors, but I have to confess I’d enjoy tinkering with that thing! Do we have a mean to carry it though?"
”Yes, I can operate a ballista. Yes, the wagon at the bottom of the pit could carry the ballista. “ Carnadine replies flatly wondering if it was good idea to suggest military advantages in the future.
"At the bottom of the pit... Let's see first if we can fix it, yes? I'll have a stab at it!" says Deimus and, if the others agree, he'll eagerly go to the pit and help pull the wagon out. His tubes are whistling happily as he ducks under and proceeds to inspect and repair the carriage.
Intelligence (Tinker's Tools): 1d20 + 3 ⇒ (18) + 3 = 21
The wagon appears to have taken a 40 ft dive off a cliff and been impaled on iron spikes. 2 of its 4 wheels and spokes are badly damaged, but with the right weight distribution you might only need 2...like a chariot. The axle shaft is in good shape, if slightly warped. The main deck is punctured in a few places and the boards have come up and partially splintered, but it could be reinforced and tacked back down with the right tools. There seems to be plenty of scraps between the two pits to get it going again.
Damage it took: 4d6 + 2d10 ⇒ (3, 1, 1, 1) + (3, 9) = 18
For the wagon, you estimate it would be 2 hours and a DC 10 tinker tools repair (10 hp repair per hour). You could repair in half the time with a DC 15. Voyra could perhaps pull the wreckage up if tied and secured...400 lbs.
edit: look at that nasty ass triple 1s...just saw quadruple 1s in another game.
Deimus emerges from under the chariot: "Good news, it can likely be salvaged. It won't be winning races, but it will carry ballistas just fine. It will take me some time though..."
And with that, he'll ask the chariot be moved inside the tower if possible, then start working on it, trying to salvage the wheels first, then build the chariot from scratch, in some way, instead of trying to fix the chariot. That way, he finds it easier to keep the thing balanced.
Intelligence (Tinker's Tools): 1d20 + 3 ⇒ (2) + 3 = 5
For a while, Deimus struggles, but as he realizes his clutch depended on him, and his tinker's reputation was on the line as well, he focuses his mind and redoubles his efforts!
Inspiration: 1d20 + 3 ⇒ (20) + 3 = 23
Deimus, thats certainly a great roll and we can keep that, but because of the time requirement possible random encounters I want to make sure others in the party are alright with the break here. Also, someone would need to figure out how to remove the ballista from its mount in the stone to be transported (int masons tools) and could be working on that during the same time.
Do this thing?
That's aboslutely fair. I just wanted to not be the delaying factor, but nothing is set in stone.
Carn is only a yes, if we have a quick way (less than 2 hours) to shift these things. He's a knight not an engineer.
Lexi is a no. She wants to keep moving and doesn't think having a ballista will be worth getting carrying a giant target around with the group.
”While it does my heart good to have a siege weapon, how long of a trip do we have left? Two hours may not seem like much. But here we have fought a dragon and multiple dragons. I don’t know if we will he left alone for that long. So, if we have more than a day left of travel, then aye. The ballista may well guard us well on a long journey. If we can power through this now, then I say charge forward. If we don’t know, then aye. The ballista may well keep us safe.”
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Alright, sounds like moving on then. Someone mentioned it and yes, I am definitely a risk vs reward type of DM, the greater the risk the greater the reward.
Lexi continues her forward scouting sweeps slowly as the party infiltrates into the northeastern districts of this apocalyptic Zobeck ruin. This area among the withered trees sports many tall, very unsafe building structures...some even collapsing before your eyes.
On one occasion a larch stone arch crumbles, the mortar holding it together a dry dust that suffuses into the gloom. The fall stirs a nest of giant bone snakes from foundation, which is also littered with a hundred rotten pumpkins...
The biggest makes a direct line for Lexi...
1d100 ⇒ 65
...but she manages to use a torch to create a clever heat double behind cover, and the snake engages the flame as the party creeps far outside and around.
Eventually the Shadow Road leads straight through a reflection of the temple district, and you pass near the dimensional-clone of the Legacy Chimera theatre (the Six Lanterns) you all met at a few weeks ago, with the temple of Khors just adjacent where you witnessed an assassination attempt.
You get a strange sense of deja vu...but there are some differences too. Here, the theater and temple are still connected by a kind of long skywalk. You might wonder how the shrines to Khors, Perun, and the masks of Thor are represented here...
Raseri slows to a stop, looking at where the shrines to Perun and the Masks of Thor would be in Zobeck. Part of her, the part that wants so badly to run from all of this, tells her to keep moving, to keep walking. Another part of her, the part that is angered by the first, cowardly part of her, wants nothing more than to stride in and prove that she is not afraid.
But she is afraid. She's terrified. She's too honest with herself to not admit that. She feels a fool and childish for her indecision, only made worse by the sharp reminders of how she's used up almost everything she has echoing about her head in Carnadine's voice.
Torn and uncertain, she closes her eyes and reaches up for her holy symbol.
"Hvaða leið ætti ég að fara," she asks her god in a small, soft voice, like the first hints of a breeze or the soft hiss of gentle rainfall.
"Which way should I go?"
I think I'll leave this here for the GM. Hope you have fun with it. ;)
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Almost blinded by the flash even with her eyes closed, it takes Raseri a moment to blink away the spots in her eyes. Once her vision is clear, she follows the lightning, looking for whatever it is that she's supposed to find.
Perception: 1d20 + 5 ⇒ (5) + 5 = 10 Wow, that wasn't the roll I was hoping for.
Raseri almost falls into a trance as she walks towards the lightning strike, counting her heartbeats as she waits for the crack and roll of thunder.
Deimus jumps at the flash and looks for cover, but the event is over before he's had a chance to react. Looking at Raseri, he asks: "Is this a sign of your god?"
"Tzk. But then they wouldn't be gods, just guys..." replies Deimus, slightly offended.
As you near the place where the mysterious light touched down, you see darkness gathering, taking form. Slowly a shape rises from the dark mist covering the ground around you. Arms, body, and finally a head coalesce on the humanoid yet insubstantial body in front of you. Two points of pitch-black darkness stare at you from the places where its eyes would be.
Dei: 1d20 + 2 ⇒ (17) + 2 = 19
Hru: 1d20 + 4 ⇒ (4) + 4 = 8
Kjet: 1d20 + 8 ⇒ (7) + 8 = 15
Lex: 1d20 + 8 ⇒ (11) + 8 = 19
Ras: 1d20 + 8 ⇒ (1) + 8 = 9
Raseri hesitates for a moment, fear worming into her belly, but she takes a deep breath and steadies herself.
"Færðu þig,"she tells the spectre in a cold, flat voice. The earth rumbles under her feet and the rumble of rolling thunder comes from all around her as she hefts her maul in both hands, the threat very implicit as she narrows her eyes.
If it does not move after a moment, or does anything other than move out of her way, Raseri attacks.
Attack (Maul, Booming Blade): 1d20 + 6 ⇒ (3) + 6 = 9 Well that is embarrassing.
”Fookin’ wish gods would just talk. Like, oi! Goblin-fondler! Get yer arse in the temple and get me MacGuffin! Ye know. Something straight forward. It’d save a lot of time and energy for everyone involved.”
"I've had the great honor of Ninkash speaking to me on two occasions, but she only seems to talk to me when I'm rather sloshed."
With a wink, Kjeta adds, "I never know if she has more to say to me...but I try to get smashed ever so often just in case she does."
As her companions point out the gathering shadows, Kjeta shines her holy amulet at the shadow, and calls on Ninkash to fill her tankard with her blessings.
Use object if necessary, to aim her Continual Light (L4 spell, if it matters) at the shadow.
Bonus to cast Tankard-lellagh.
Here? Always. I was just asking cause if it uses darkvision to see in darkness I'm invisible to it.
Stealth: 1d20 + 11 ⇒ (6) + 11 = 17
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I'm back and a little confused. Why did Carn auto-fail his Perception? Is the spectre not appearing to him, because he didn't kill it?
Stealth: 1d20 + 5 ⇒ (16) + 5 = 21
Suddenly a trio of ghouls drop from the rafters high above...
Party is surprised against ghouls, but Lexi has surprise on the Deathwisp (assassin). So ghouls and Lexi may act this round, and Lexi's hawtness will trigger if she attacks the Deathwisp.
Carn: 1d20 + 0 ⇒ (10) + 0 = 10
Dei: 1d20 + 3 ⇒ (15) + 3 = 18
Hru: 1d20 + 3 ⇒ (13) + 3 = 16
Kjet: 1d20 + 2 ⇒ (13) + 2 = 15
Lex: 1d20 + 7 ⇒ (10) + 7 = 17
Ras: 1d20 + 0 ⇒ (20) + 0 = 20
Enemies: 1d20 + 3 ⇒ (1) + 3 = 4
Ras, Dei, Lex, Hru, Kjet, Carn
Enemies lost initiative, so reactions may be taken this round by all party and Lexi is up.
Oh fun. I know my first action when it gets to be my turn. By the way do reactions include OA on the dropping Ghouls? :P
Raseri spins around as she's startled by the movement from above. Her surprise only lasts a moment, however. Blue eyes narrow as her rage fuels the storm brewing in her.
"Geturðu heyrt þrumuna, hrogn Hel?"
"Can you hear the thunder, Hel's spawn?"
Dark, gutteral words of magic come from Lexi's particular patch of darkness, and then a pair of daggers come flying out but a moment later, clearly aiming to murder the Deathwisp.
Bonus action to cast Hunter's Mark, then two attacks, including the extra one from Gloom Stalker.
First Attack (Gloomstalker) w/Advantage: 1d20 + 8 ⇒ (4) + 8 = 121d20 + 8 ⇒ (15) + 8 = 23
Damage +Sneak +Gloomstalker +Hunter's Mark: 1d4 + 2d6 + 1d8 + 1d6 + 5 ⇒ (3) + (6, 4) + (5) + (6) + 5 = 29
Critical Damage: 1d4 + 2d6 + 1d8 + 1d6 ⇒ (4) + (4, 3) + (8) + (4) = 23
Second Attack (Normal) w/Advantage: 1d20 + 8 ⇒ (5) + 8 = 131d20 + 8 ⇒ (10) + 8 = 18
Damage +Hunter's Mark: 1d4 + 1d6 + 5 ⇒ (1) + (2) + 5 = 8
Carnadine rears Voyra in anticipation of combat. "Undead, must we fight?"
Lexi, believe me I was hoping for a good assassinate finally, but sorry to say this monster has an ability called Flicker that imposes disadvantage on ranged attacks...cancelling your advantage and making both miss.
Ras, OA only occur when stuff moves out of your reach...not into or through it.
The partially immaterial being blinks randomly just as Lexi's double daggers find locate its center, clattering into the rubble behind.
The ghouls lick their faces with sickening foot long tongues. One says "I call that one's spleen...I'm going to let it rot and fester for a few hours before savoring every morsel."
Another dark black one says "Bah, you didn't even believe me when I told you I smelled fresh meat, Gorak. I get firstsies...and I want to wear that ones dead face until its ripe and juicy."
Gorak just shrugs, and the third simply laughs like an insane criminal, apparently not caring that much...there is plenty to go around, after all.
The dark one bundles a pocket of negative energy into its fist, launching it at the party...
Darkness Ghoul Target, heavy-armored PC alpha: 1d4 ⇒ 2 Hru
Shadow Bolt: 1d20 + 5 ⇒ (12) + 5 = 17
Shadow Bolt, adv: 1d20 + 5 ⇒ (15) + 5 = 20
Dmg: 5d6 ⇒ (5, 3, 1, 4, 1) = 14 cold + DC 13 con save or blind Hru
The mad ghoul seems to prefer softer targets, at the moment only seeing Deimus...
Bite: 1d20 + 4 ⇒ (19) + 4 = 23
Bite, reckless: 1d20 + 4 ⇒ (4) + 4 = 8
Dmg: 2d8 + 2 ⇒ (4, 7) + 2 = 13 piercing
Claw: 1d20 + 4 ⇒ (11) + 4 = 15
Claw, reckless: 1d20 + 4 ⇒ (6) + 4 = 10
Dmg: 2d6 + 2 ⇒ (4, 4) + 2 = 10 slashing + DC 11 con save vs paralyzation Deimus
Gorak the ghoul raises his arms high, nasty rotten armpits spilling forth an almost visible cloud of stench as he simultaneously wet-farts, belches, and vomits near the party grinning happily...
Gorak Target, heavy-armored PC alpha: 1d4 ⇒ 4 Raseri
Bite: 1d20 + 6 ⇒ (18) + 6 = 24
Bite, reckless: 1d20 + 6 ⇒ (13) + 6 = 19
Dmg: 2d8 + 4 ⇒ (4, 5) + 4 = 13 piercing
Claw: 1d20 + 6 ⇒ (19) + 6 = 25
Claw, reckless: 1d20 + 6 ⇒ (13) + 6 = 19
Dmg: 2d6 + 4 ⇒ (1, 1) + 4 = 6 slashing + DC 13 con save vs paralyzation Raseri
The strange shadowy Deathwisp that resembles the assassin makes a direct line for Hrungnir, recognizing the mortal that recently exploded his head like a watermelon "...revEEEEENGGGE!!!"
Life Drain: 1d20 + 8 ⇒ (18) + 8 = 26
Dmg: 7d8 + 5 ⇒ (7, 3, 1, 2, 3, 6, 7) + 5 = 34 cold + DC 15 con save vs hp max reduction Hru
Ras, Dei, Lex, Hru, Kjet, Carn <--UP
You are in roughly a 60x70 chamber. The walls are partially collapsed where there were windows on the other side of this dimension. Rafters above still stand holding a mostly not there ceiling. Rubble covers most of the floor as difficult terrain. There are a number of large religious statues here as well. Gorak and the Mad ghoul attacked Recklessly, meaning you have advantage on them like the barbarian ability.
Finally, Gorak has a stench aura...Raseri is close enough to get the full scent and needs a DC 13 con save at the start of her turn vs poison.
Ghost Knight ninja'd, although you only saw them after they attacked.
The 'smart' one laughs at Carnadine, amused somehow "A noble of the Blood Kingdom? How long has it been ssssince one of yourssss has gracccced thisss realm...we hunger for dead flessssh. Give us your horsssse that we might feasssst...the hunger issss strong, we are all quite mad..." it again licks its face, stained with vomit and Raseri blood.
Ghouls are undead that hunger for dead and decomposing flesh. When it can't feed on the dead, it seeks the living to make corpses out of them. They gain no nourishment from the feast, it is simply an unending hunger driving them to consume.
The first ghoul was an elf that worshipped a demon prince. As a mortal the elf feasted on dead flesh to honor the demon, and became an undying ghoul as a reward. Another god took pity on the elves, and has since made them immune to the ghouls paralytic touch.