Location 8: Halls of the Goblin Court
Inside, the smell of fresh baked, buttery rolls hits your nostrils like an ogre's fist...a stomach so tired of sour berries can hardly resist their charm. Stacks and stacks of the warm rolls fill this little storage space, along with barrels of freshly churned butter. But a wide walking space cuts through the stacks, leading to a set of double doors.
Opening, you are somewhat surprised to see a wall of solid, dark natural stone. But within its center is a narrow passage you can easily squeeze through. Crouching and squeezing you finally make it out of the cramped passage and into a ridiculous scene of insane evil...a great hall, rather the mockery of one, some 60 ft square and splattered with various types of blood.
Empty, as far as you can tell. Status too low to see goblins.
"Hello Ulrika. It is a genuine pleasure to meet you."
She seems quite accustomed to the formal greetings, if not delivering it with some sarcasm "The season finds you well, Captain of the Blood Kingdom. Tales of your lance are whispered about the Moon Hall." she curtsies.
"So, how did you receive the appointment to be the Court Painter?"
She grins "Such an honor, right? I think someone liked something I painted once..."
Eracen chuckles "She's being modest. Any could recognize the skill and insight in her slightest brush stroke."
"Do you know Eracen's story of how he became the Court Musician? He's been reluctant to share." He asks in front of Eracen to provoke him to share. What race is Ulrika?
The halfling girl raises one of her bushy brown eyebrows towards the entertainer "Has he...perhaps you've not filled his flask enough!"
Eracen doesn't seem amused by that "Enough, Urlika..."
She lets it rest after a final snicker.
"We've heard that humiliations are a way to increase your status in the court. We're working on one for the Master of Roads. Any advice on how to make it as barbed as possible?"
She thinks for a moment "Hrm. Have you considered infusing your work with actual memories? The fey work magics that allow such experiences to be traded like currency...imagine, during your unveiling, being able to directly deliver the coward's shame. It transcends interpretation. Transcends art. Though I suppose that would be difficult if the boy is already dead as you say."
Tapping her chin "Something universal to the scathesidhe is their sense of height...that they are above and beyond nearly all other creatures. They truly delight to see one fooled by fey illusions, as it proves their superiority." she adds a bit softer "In their thinking...perhaps you used such a tactic out on the south road. Or you could say you did. Who would know?"
GM, how long does that take? A few rounds?
5 minutes for chainmail, so 50 rounds. They can wait for you though, they were casting buffs and what not. As soon as everyone is ready...
Carn: 1d20 + 0 ⇒ (1) + 0 = 1
Dei: 1d20 + 3 ⇒ (13) + 3 = 16
Hru: 1d20 + 3 ⇒ (8) + 3 = 11
Kjet: 1d20 + 2 ⇒ (10) + 2 = 12
Lex: 1d20 + 7 ⇒ (18) + 7 = 25
Ras: 1d20 + 0 ⇒ (17) + 0 = 17
Enemy: 1d20 + 1 ⇒ (15) + 1 = 16
Lexi, Raseri, Deimus <--UP
Kjeta, Hrungnir, Carnadine
Will make a quick and dirty map again on the tracker for this one, to play with the interesting hut boundary. Spells can't pass but mundane ranged that were on your person when the hut was cast can. The dome is opaque from the outside, but transparent from the inside looking out.
Map updated. Sheets tracker, not big area map. I imagine/presume the hut was placed in the corner near the gazebo. Here, the 4 enemies assail you. The magic hut is the pink circle, with the technical 10 ft radius grid squares marked in purple. Standing within the circle but not on a purple square means your body is half out half in, giving you half-cover (+2 ac and advantage on dex saves). The grey is the palace walls, brick and climbable. Green is normal courtyard vegetation and nothing special about it. The cloaks have obvious flight capabilities that at least Carn, Ras, and Lexi have witnessed.
Edit: Also, this is early morning and everyone has full hp/abilities recovered by now.
Deimus imbues the air around the constructs with magical quality, making the light shimmer and shine around them, highlighting every part of it.
Cast Faerie Fire, Dex, DC 16, 20 foot cube, so not sure how many I can target. Looks like 1 monolith and 2 cloaks.
Alrighty, Deimus note that none of them had a Readied action this time, but keep in mind you have to step outside the hut to cast (and can then step back in).
Dex vs D, M1: 1d20 + 1 ⇒ (19) + 1 = 20
Dex vs D, C1: 1d20 + 4 ⇒ (3) + 4 = 7
Dex vs D, C2: 1d20 + 4 ⇒ (8) + 4 = 12
The cloaks seem to burst into a heatless flame at Deimus' spellsong, a bright blue light that consumes the shadows surrounding them.
I'll stick to the shadows as much as possible, given that the others have indicated there are people visible that she can't see.
Stealth Hour 1: 1d20 + 11 ⇒ (14) + 11 = 25
Stealth Hour 2: 1d20 + 11 ⇒ (3) + 11 = 14
Stealth Hour 3: 1d20 + 11 ⇒ (11) + 11 = 22
Stealth Hour 4: 1d20 + 11 ⇒ (11) + 11 = 22
Stealth Hour 5: 1d20 + 11 ⇒ (14) + 11 = 25
Stealth Hour 6: 1d20 + 11 ⇒ (11) + 11 = 22
Stealth Hour 7: 1d20 + 11 ⇒ (7) + 11 = 18
Stealth Hour 8: 1d20 + 11 ⇒ (8) + 11 = 19
I'm not going to take anything. I know what the fey think of thieves. If I can get the layout of a room without entering it, I will.
Survival Day 1: 1d20 + 5 ⇒ (11) + 5 = 16
Survival Day 2: 1d20 + 5 ⇒ (12) + 5 = 17
Survival Day 3: 1d20 + 5 ⇒ (15) + 5 = 20
Survival Day 4: 1d20 + 5 ⇒ (8) + 5 = 13
Investigate (advantage)+guidance Day 2: 1d20 - 1 + 1d4 ⇒ (5) - 1 + (4) = 8
Investigate (advantage)+guidance Day 3: 1d20 - 1 + 1d4 ⇒ (17) - 1 + (4) = 20
As the days go by, Kjeta gets better and better at spotting the tracks of the invisible goblins and fey around her. Those clues--together with Carnadine chatting casually with someone she can neither see nor hear, but who seems to be praising her masonry skills--both titillate and exasperate.
"Mother of Ales, help me piece this veil!" she cries out, taking a healthy swig of beer...and suddenly she sees and hears Ulrika and Eracen.
At first she's startled enough to almost spit out her beer (a great sin against Ninkash) but she controls herself. Heart beating with pride, she smiles and says, "Kjeta Strongmalt here. Pleased to see and hear you both, Eracen and Ulrika.
"Ulrika, I'd be most happy to trade techniques, if you'd like. Masonry isn't my main craft, but it's one my family has long valued. I'd be honored to see some of your artwork as well, if I might!"
Lexi, from up on the roofs you get a good sense of the boundaries of both wings. However, there is little of interest as everything seems in disrepair, cobwebbed, and looted. In the second hour of your wandering however, you are again beset by a strange light from above your person...similar to the one you experienced under the tree of the lower courtyard. This time however, the flickering light seems to follow you...frustrating your attempts at stealth. Further, as more time passes you get the sense that you are being watched...hot breath on the back of your neck.
I suppose I will reveal the south wing map without explaining the individual areas, since you are still not seeing them properly. And that would take actually forever to do, considering there's umpteen--jillion locations. But layout asked for, layout recieved. The north wing does not have an access from the roof. Also note the annoying north south twist on the map...
The halfling nods at Kjeta "Most kind. But I fear my work these days is just a fad among the nobles, a new commodity to trade that they may tire of any season. I'm not saying I don't mind the coin...I just wish a different fate for my art at times. Perhaps when my current commissions are complete I could do something you might take back to Midgard..."
Combat at the Tiny Hut:
Buffs marked on tracker. Lexi and Raseri are up.
Still waiting on a ruling about shield bashing.
Oh sorry, didn't see the edit. If you want to do damage with your shield, its a d4+prof+str improvised weapon and not compatible with Booming Blade. You can make a Shove with it, but to be fair to the Shield Master feat it uses an action, not a bonus action...so its not really any different from a normal Shove. If you wanted to get two attacks, you would need Dual Wielder since a shield certainly doesn't have the 'light' property.
Otherwise someone probably has a spare weapon, or you could have fashioned a cudgel from a tree in the last few days likely. Or as mentioned the Monolith swords from before are greatswords that shatter on crits.
OKay, Ras is using one of the Monolith's swords.
Attack (Monolith sword, Booming Blade, Bless) v. Monolith 2: 1d20 + 6 + 1d4 ⇒ (5) + 6 + (3) = 14 Well, that certainly isn't going to help with Ras' inferiority complex. That's probably a miss.
Damage: 2d6 + 3 + 1d8 ⇒ (3, 2) + 3 + (5) = 13
Raseri picks up one of the Monolith's swords that she'd pilfered for a backup weapon and mutters a word of power as she rushes out to engage one of the constructs trying to toss them out. Her frustration only grows as she finds her unable to hit her opponent.
14 hits exactly. However...
Raseri notes that despite the inferior goblin smithing of the armor, fringed about the edges is actually mithral. The moonlit metal covers the creature in a criss cross pattern like a web holding the fragile thing together. The blow was solid, and rattled its innards around...the lightning of Raseri's spellcraft zipping along, but still the mithral prevented a portion of her blow.
Resistance on the slashing damage for 4, then full damage from booming for 9 total delivered.
Sighing, Lexi first attempted to outmaneuver the ball of light, then outrun it. Neither worked.
eventually giving up, Lexi instead just returned to the group, not even bothering to hide.
Stealth: 1d20 + 11 ⇒ (7) + 11 = 18
Attack Rolls: 1d20 + 8 ⇒ (14) + 8 = 221d20 + 8 ⇒ (10) + 8 = 18
Crit Damage Roll for Gloomstalker Attack: 2d4 + 2d8 + 5 ⇒ (3, 3) + (5, 2) + 5 = 18
Crit Damage Roll for Second Attack: 2d4 + 5 ⇒ (2, 4) + 5 = 11
Sneak Attack Crit: 4d6 ⇒ (6, 5, 5, 2) = 18
From out of the hut, a pair of daggers come flying out at Monolith 2.
Suddenly a black dagger whips out from the arcane screen, slicing through a leather strapping on its underside. Like yanking off someones belt and having the pants fall down, the armor collapses into a clunky pile of trash instantly.
Monolith 2 destroyed.
Auto-crit PC ability + Monster ability whence instantly destroyed on a crit = this. I assume you wish to direct your second attack against a different enemy...which one?
Almost simultaneously, a second dagger whips free from the planar bubble, tearing the old clasp of the cloak free and sending it to the wind on tatters.
Cloak 1 down.
Raseri stood alone outside Deimus' magics...and once again became the magnet for melee.
The remaining Monolith saunters forward with its matching blade...raising it high as if it were a feather..."You are...dismissed."
Attack: 1d20 + 6 ⇒ (18) + 6 = 24
Slashing: 2d6 + 4 ⇒ (6, 3) + 4 = 13
Cold: 2d8 ⇒ (8, 6) = 14
Also Raseri, you need to make a DC 10 Charisma save. You really want to make the save...
Meanwhile the cloak had circled around and wrapped itself right on Raseri's shoulders! It pulls tight, attempting to bind her arms to her body...
Snare: 1d20 + 4 ⇒ (16) + 4 = 20
Snare, adv: 1d20 + 4 ⇒ (16) + 4 = 20
...the grip succeeds, and the cloak further anchors itself like a madman's locksuit with tendrils of shadow energy.
Raseri, you are restrained as the cloak envelopes you. You or ally within 5 need DC 14 strength check to escape. Also, the cloak is occupying the same space as you are. While that is true, attacks will hit both the cloak and Raseri.
A restrained creature's speed becomes 0, and it can't benefit from any bonus to its speed.
Attack rolls against the creature have advantage, and the creature's attack rolls have disadvantage.
The creature has disadvantage on Dexterity saving throws.
Deimus hurries to Raseri's side, hoping to deliver her!
Can I just give her advantage through Aid action instead of rolling myself?
Cha Save: 1d20 + 3 ⇒ (2) + 3 = 5
Not really understanding everything that was happening, Hrungnir did the most straightforward thing possible. He attacked the monolith!
Hit: 1d20 + 9 ⇒ (11) + 9 = 20
Damage: 1d8 + 8 ⇒ (3) + 8 = 11
Fire: 1d6 ⇒ 4
Booming Blade: 1d8 ⇒ 7
Hit: 1d20 + 9 ⇒ (19) + 9 = 28
Damage: 1d8 + 8 ⇒ (6) + 8 = 14
Fire: 1d6 ⇒ 3
Kjeta follows Hrungnir's lead, swinging her glowing tankard at the monolith while a second floating tankard flies at it at the same time.
Tankard-lellagh: 1d20 + 8 + 1d4 ⇒ (9) + 8 + (3) = 20
Damage+Divine Strike: 2d8 + 5 ⇒ (6, 6) + 5 = 17
Spiritual Weapon: 1d20 + 8 + 1d4 ⇒ (1) + 8 + (1) = 10
Damage: 2d8 + 5 ⇒ (3, 6) + 5 = 14
Raseri and Hrungnir Remember that you have Bless active: +1d4 on d20 rolls
Lexi came rushing out of the tent and likewise began attacking the Monolith.
Attack Roll w/Dagger of Venom: 1d20 + 9 ⇒ (12) + 9 = 21
Damage Roll: 1d4 + 6 ⇒ (3) + 6 = 9
Sneak Attack: 2d6 ⇒ (2, 4) = 6
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Str Check (Advantage): 1d20 + 3 + 1d4 ⇒ (2) + 3 + (1) = 61d20 + 3 + 1d4 ⇒ (1) + 3 + (3) = 7 Oh this is too perfect!
Raseri stumbles back from the staggering blow as it knocks the sword from her hands. Before she can recover from that, the cloak wraps her arms up tight. Even with Deimus helping her, she makes no headway, and grimaces in pain as the cloak wraps around her tighter. She looks up at the monolith and slumps before falling to her knees.
"I yield," she gasps as her gaze falls to the monolith's feet.
A fraction of a second after everyone starts to move, Carnadine strides out of the Hut to melee with the monolith. He puts his shoulder into his shield and attempts to knock the monolith over.
bonus action = shield shove: 1d20 + 6 ⇒ (17) + 6 = 23
Then, he sweeps his silver sword back and forth from the low guard postion.
longsword 1: 1d20 + 5 ⇒ (19) + 5 = 241d8 + 5 ⇒ (5) + 5 = 10
longsword 2: 1d20 + 5 ⇒ (11) + 5 = 161d8 + 5 ⇒ (1) + 5 = 6
if knocked prone from shove, attacks get advantage
longsword 1: 1d20 + 5 ⇒ (15) + 5 = 20
longsword 2: 1d20 + 5 ⇒ (16) + 5 = 21
if knocked prone from shove, use Surge to attack monolith again
longsword 1: 1d20 + 5 ⇒ (9) + 5 = 141d20 + 5 ⇒ (7) + 5 = 121d8 + 5 ⇒ (8) + 5 = 13
longsword 2: 1d20 + 5 ⇒ (3) + 5 = 81d20 + 5 ⇒ (18) + 5 = 231d8 + 5 ⇒ (8) + 5 = 13
Suddenly a huge glass of beer struts proudly out of the bubble, attempting to clock the Monolith armor hard across the jaw. In truth, Kjeta was only using its charge as a distraction for her true strike which pummeled into the plating sounding like a gong.
Hrungnir then wielded the giant morningstar as an extension of himself, a series terrible blows raining down on the construct...causing its gait to be unsure, and unsteady. Carnadine registered the opportunity without even a conscious thought, his training taking over...
Str vs Carn: 1d20 + 4 ⇒ (12) + 4 = 16
...and the Monolith collapsed under the might of the Ghost Imperial, the knight scrunching the ramshackle plates down like an empty tin can.
Monolith out. Only had 60 hp. Carn save your action surge.
Raseri shockingly seems to yield under the cloak's embrace, and the cloak become much less aggressive, yet still held her tight "Compliance. Await further instructions."
Deimus rushes to Raseri's aid, but his forward actuators simply become entangled in the material of the cloak...like tossing a hairball into an eggbeater.
Lexi, the Monolith is defeated by the time your init comes around. What would you like to do instead?
Raseri, Deimus <--UP
Enemies (cloak, faerie fired but sharing space with Raseri)
Kjeta, Hrungnir, Carnadine
Scratch my last action then for:
Lexi moves out of the tent and tries to free Raseri from the....cloak? really?
Strength: 1d20 ⇒ 6
Lexi strains to pull the cloth off of Raseri, but she makes no headway.
The obstinate garment resists every snatch, perhaps because Raseri has clearly given up the fight. Luckily, at her admission of defeat, it finally slacks and turns its attention to others...
Deimus/Lexi: 1d2 ⇒ 2
With a sharp gust of wind, the edge of the cloak whips around in a semi-circle...cutting with a razor's edge...
Attack: 1d20 + 6 ⇒ (6) + 6 = 12
...but the nimble shadow manages to avoid it with a simple sudden head movement.
Party up. Cloak no longer in same space as Raseri. It has Deimus' faerie fire still lighting it up for advantage. Bless (Raseri, Hrungnir, Kjeta) and Protection from Evil (Hrungnir) are still active.
Arcana: 1d20 + 5 ⇒ (12) + 5 = 17
With the monolith down, Hrungnir turned his attention to the next grave threat. A...cloak? He wracked his brain for any knowledge he might have on such a creature. And specifically any weaknesses or aversions it might have.
Str: 1d20 + 4 ⇒ (16) + 4 = 20
As he did so, he also tried to just rip the damn thing off.
When the cloak releases the Thorsdottir, the knight incorporeal starts slashing at the glowing flying fabric. His silver sword slices a seam.
longsword 1: 1d20 + 5 ⇒ (8) + 5 = 131d20 + 5 ⇒ (20) + 5 = 252d8 + 5 ⇒ (1, 4) + 5 = 10
longsword 2: 1d20 + 5 ⇒ (15) + 5 = 201d20 + 5 ⇒ (1) + 5 = 61d8 + 5 ⇒ (3) + 5 = 8
if not destroyed, yet Surge!
longsword 1: 1d20 + 5 ⇒ (13) + 5 = 181d20 + 5 ⇒ (12) + 5 = 171d8 + 5 ⇒ (6) + 5 = 11
longsword 2: 1d20 + 5 ⇒ (17) + 5 = 221d20 + 5 ⇒ (16) + 5 = 211d8 + 5 ⇒ (5) + 5 = 10
Carnadine 4: the goblin cook, brownies, and other goblins become visible
Deimus 6: the full court is now visible in all its splendor, with shadow fey and other true courtiers at last appearing. Also, the Monoliths become beneath your notice and fade from sight, being replaced with more royal/regal guard. There seems to be an active martial contest with duels/jousts/etc in the area near the stables. You note also strange tiny dragons whose bellies glow with a bright light flitting about. One thing that strikes you is how packed it is...there is barely room to move around!
Hru/Kjeta/Raseri 2: one goblin, the shy mute becomes visible
Lexi -1: only owls and ravens
Is the unexploded monolith's sword useful and magical? I probably asked this question before. Also, Carn kept his Surge.
You can use it as a non-magical greatsword, but no its pretty crappy goblin work...will be destroyed on a crit like the creatures themselves.
The defeated uncrit monolith is essentially plate mail, but size large. It could be resized with some work. There is also some mithral inlay on the plate that could be valuable, along with a few gems that likely focused the magic powering the footman...but are now just normal gems.
Raseri seemed strangely willing to give up in the face of the guardians, but then again Raseri is always strange. The group continues work on the frieze, which will likely be completed tomorrow.
Just one last pause here for any RP with new status reveals or Raseri.
"Welcome to the Shadow Court, Hrungnir. There are even more to see."
"Good work everyone. That was nicely done. Hopefully, they won't bother us again until we're done," concludes Carnadine.
Everything happening at the same time today. I'll post when I get a chance. Sorry about that.
"Tzk. Amazzing..." and Deimus describes to the others what he sees, answering any questions they may have.
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Day 5, the Unveiling
With the help of Eracen and Ulrika, an announcement about the unveiling is circulated near the end of that day. By late the next, a large crowd (for those who can see it anyways) amasses near the gazebo where the new frieze was hoisted into view...to presumably become a part of that structure.
Insert party introduction by Deimus perhaps, and description of frieze.
The reactions are a mixed bag...
An emu headed humanoid scoffs "Tch...why would I care about some...uncommissioned work? Its illegal. A scandal. Tear the rubbish down I say. Do they think they can fool the queen?"
But luckily Kjeta's friendship with the little halfling Ulrika pays off, as she lies "Somebody shut that beak. It's my commision as visual artist in prima of the courts. Acta deos numquam mortalia fallunt." she further retorts in draconic.
Then a crocodile headed one ponders "Hmm...so Haylcaster is finished? Who is the new house heir? What of the betrothed...that Midgardian..." it smacks its maw trying to remember "Elegyn Leoniel was it?" a raven on his shoulder repeated the name over and over.
The name sent a shiver up Raseri and Lexi's spine. Why in Jörmungandr's enigmatic ass would their last charge be involved the Courts of the Shadow Fey? (This was the name of the girl you were protecting in the theatre. Also where you two met for the first time.)
A simply dressed brownie (half elf, half halfling) seems amused at the question "Hehe...sure she'll be fine. Probably just go to the next lad, Roren needs that joining of the houses, with the Midgardian nobles that is, to survive. Especially after this nail in the coffin...who will take them seriously now? Bravo, I say."
One of the shadow fey courtiers puts two and two together "Wait...these new Midgardians created this frieze? On their own here in the courtyard under our noses? Impressive." and many others join nodding and murmuring their agreement.
Then an ogre dressed in a tuxedo dumbly says "Why lips not move..." and and annoyed goblin informs him "That's not what a frieze is you idiot...see, its a visual artistic expression that tells a story..."
"Oh." then after a long pause "...how tell story when lips not move..." and the goblin facepalms.
Deimus listens carefully to the comments made, but more importantly, to their body language, trying to figure out where to send the conversation from this point forward.
Insight: 1d20 + 7 ⇒ (9) + 7 = 16
As they get ready for the unveiling, Kjeta asks Ulrika, "Say, I know some fey prefer wine but if you like beer...I have to say, it's my truest media. Let me know if you'd like a pour."
As the crowd begins to kibitz--and as Deimus and Ulrika pass on some of their comments and questions--Kjeta listens with alternating amusement and frustration. What assinine deity keeps us from being able to see and hear the people around us??
Would Ulrika or Deimus be willing to share Kjeta's ale with the onlookers? Not 100% sure it'll help...but prolly can't hurt.
Persuasion+brewers tools: 1d20 + 4 + 3 ⇒ (11) + 4 + 3 = 18
Persuasion+brewers tools: 1d20 + 4 + 3 ⇒ (14) + 4 + 3 = 21
Deimus, the higher class scathesidhe seem more impressed that the party was able to put it together as a surprise/in secret here in the courtyard beyond its entertaining/scandalous theme. They appreciate/admire the trickery aspect of such an enterprise. Perhaps hamming that up could drive the already mostly positive reaction even further.