[PFS2] GM Rinaldo's The Mosquito Witch (#1-02)

Game Master The Great Rinaldo!

Maps and Pictures


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The Midnight Mirror | The Mosquito Witch

Dot in!


The Midnight Mirror | The Mosquito Witch

The din of ringing steel and the simmering heat of the forge makes Smine’s Weaponworks easy to find, beyond even its sterling reputation and its well painted sign. An open sliding door leads into a work area filled with apprentices, each toiling to fuel the ceaseless demands for weapons to feed the city’s famed Arena of Aroden. One of the workers, a grim-faced halfling woman barely taller than her own anvil, flashes a smile and points to a narrow staircase at the back of the smithy. Climbing the stairs provides a small respite from the din and the heat, with hanging bowls of cloves and aromatic bark making a heroic, if futile, effort to cover the smell of coal and sweat.

As you arrive at the Lodge, please post an in-character introduction! Once everyone is here, I'll start the briefing.

Vigilant Seal

Human Sorcerer 1 | HP 16/16 | AC 15| F +5; R +5; W +5 | Speed 25 ft | Morningstar +3 (1d6 P) | Perc +3

Vengis Mountebank sighs at the sight of the stinky lodge. He has a handsome face but graying hair; he looks like he has enjoyed a lifetime of popularity with the ladies. He looks at the halfling worker skeptically.

Is this the fresh start, or way to redeem myself? It seems unlikely. There does not appear to be much coin here--

He groans, the travel making the older gentleman tired. "Some refreshment sounds ideal," he says to no one in particular. "An old priest must rest where he can."

Grand Archive

CN female Bleachling gnome (Umbral gnome) Rogue 1 | HP 17/17 | AC 17 | F +4 | R +8 | W +6 |Per +6 | Stlth + 6 | Spd 25 | Focus -- | Active Conditions: None

A small shadow slouches between anvils, flinching instinctively every time a hammer strikes an anvil. The dark cloak hides an unnaturally pale face. Once in the respite of the stairwell, Lissi slides the hood awkwardly away from her head, revealing a shock of long, limp pink hair that seems to wave back and forth, like dead seaweed pulled to and fro by a weak tide. Her ashen skin looks like it was once a vibrant, healthy olive tone, but was drained of its color, like water from a leaky barrel. Her iris-less black eyes dart about nervously as she ascends the stairs.

She hears the older gentleman ahead of her speak and instinctively huddles in on herself. Once she realizes he's not specifically speaking to her, some of the tension in her shoulders drains away.

The smell of coal and sweat momentarily causes a pang of nostalgia that makes her chest tighten. Not for the first time since she came to the Society, she wonders where Mama is now. She said only that she was going north, but there is a great deal of "north" beyond Absalom...

Horizon Hunters

Male Gnome (Fey Touched) Fighter 2 HP 30/30 AC 19 F17 R 17 W14 Perc +6 25 feet Cl DC 17 Sp DC 17

Dob works slowly through the workspace, admiring the craftsmanship as he goes.

No sense rushing. There's always someone who wants to be fashionably late.

The pale-skinned, dark-haired gnome's serious expression breaks slightly with each note of exceptional craftsmanship. Finally, he descends the stairs, his face resetting to its resting bored expression.

"Frilko." he announces simply to any who care, "Dob Frilko."

Envoy's Alliance

NG male dwarf (Forge Dwarf) Fighter 1 | HP 23/23 | AC 17 (19 w/ shield) | F +8 | R +6 | W +5 |Per +7 | Stlth +1 | Spd 20 | Active Conditions: None

Bhadrim Thunderhammer pauses in front of the Lodge and inhales deeply, letting the smell of heated steel and flux pull him back to his father's forge, all those many years ago. With a flex of his back muscles, he pushes open the door and steps in.

He dawdles for a while, looking over the various weapons as they take shape, nodding at appreciation at some, pursing his lips at others. The female halfling is kind enough to let him continue about his business before indicating towards the stairwell.

With a curt nod of thanks, Bhadrim elbows his way through the gathered throng of apprentices and places a booted foot on the first step, before noticing the other three gathered there.

"Not much room up here, eh?" he thunders mirth fully, before taking his foot off the step. "Bhadrim Thunderhammer, at your service."


The Midnight Mirror | The Mosquito Witch

I'll go ahead and start the briefing so you can begin asking questions.

The Pathfinder Lodge above the smithy resembles an adventurer’s boarding house, providing an excellent cover for the comings and goings of the Society’s agents. A door to a kitchen opens, and a soot-smudged dwarf dressed in a leather apron steps out: Venture-Captain Holgarin Smine. The dwarf’s gestures brusquely to a table within the kitchen, his hands wiped passably clean of the ash and grease of his trade. An assortment of bread, cheese, and cider has been set out on the table for refreshments, as is a bizarre doll made of dried wheat stalks.

“Hope the journey went well.” Smine greets. “Dangerous these days. More dangerous further west, so suppose I shouldn’t complain.” His short sentences almost match the staccato cadence of the forges below. “Won’t waste your time. Ever heard of the Mosquito Witch?”

Smine grins and leans across the table, picking up the grotesque doll. Beady, painted red eyes and a needle-like snout is barely visible through shaggy wheat-stalk hair, and six handless arms are clutched to the doll’s chest. “Local legend. Ugly thing. People claim it lives near a town out here called Shimmerford. Hunters have been trying to catch it for over fifty years. No one has managed to. Villagers sell the failed hunters dolls and souvenirs instead. Fun for all.” He frowns and sets the doll down. “Not now, though. Mosquitoes and bloodseekers started plaguing the villagers. Killing livestock. Swarming people outside. Getting into food. Been happening for a year or so. People are starting to leave the town entirely. They blame the Mosquito Witch. I don’t. Doesn’t matter. It’s a problem either way. You’re going to stop it.”

GM Screen - No peeking!:

Vengis: 1d20 + 4 ⇒ (8) + 4 = 12
Lissi: 1d20 + 5 ⇒ (19) + 5 = 24
Ezekiel: 1d20 + 7 ⇒ (14) + 7 = 21

Lissi and Ezekiel both recall having heard of this "Mosquito Witch" legend. The Mosquito Witch was originally spotted almost 60 years ago in a forested location now known as Witchtop Hill. Most of the witnesses were teenagers.

The slideshow has a picture of Smine and of the doll he's showing you.

Vigilant Seal

Human Sorcerer 1 | HP 16/16 | AC 15| F +5; R +5; W +5 | Speed 25 ft | Morningstar +3 (1d6 P) | Perc +3

Vengis sighs as he hears his first mission briefing. He runs a hand through his graying, though full, head of hair.

Sounds dangerous. But you have to do this--prove yourself and find a path to redemption.

He nods to himself and raises a hand.

"So--this Mosquito Witch--hunters have tried to catch it, but haven't been able to. But, you want us to? You're saying this--doll--is the Mosquito Witch?"


The Midnight Mirror | The Mosquito Witch

Smine snorts and wiggles the wheat-stalk doll. "No, it's a doll. But apparently this is what the Mosquito Witch looks like. Missing the wings, though folks disagree about that piece. People claimed to see it a while back. Some claim they saw it more recently. No one’s proved it. No one’s caught it. No one’s sure what it is. Would be exciting if we found out.” Smine smiles wryly. “Don’t expect us to.”

Grand Archive

Sorcerer (rogue) 3 | AC 19 (20 Shield Raised) | HP 29/29| F +6 R +7 W +7 | Init +5 Perception, +6 Stealth, +8 Deception|

An handsome well dressed human male of chelaxian origin but with a tan skin moves gracefully into the room, his armor clinging as he walks. His eyes are cold, as his smile, and at his side a blade of Tian origin.

With an hint of mwangi accent he presents himself to his comrade with a flourished bow. Greetings, I'm bronz... I'm Kamil Durus. Connoisseur of both Arts and Blade.

After hearing the Venture Captain he asks To your knowledge Gold A... Venture Captain what do you think is going there? Why these creatures grows in number troubling the place?


The Midnight Mirror | The Mosquito Witch

"Don't know, that's why I'm sending you. Doubt it's an actual 'Mosquito Witch', but can't say for sure without proof."

Smine raises a thick eyebrow at Kamil's slips, but doesn't say anything.

Horizon Hunters

Male Gnome (Fey Touched) Fighter 2 HP 30/30 AC 19 F17 R 17 W14 Perc +6 25 feet Cl DC 17 Sp DC 17

"What, pardon the impudence of the question, the Hells, does some boogeyman in some Podunk town, have to do with the Pathfinder Society?" Dob asks, incredulously. He clears his throat, then clarifies "What I mean is, are we on some kind of public relations stunt, is there something of value to the Society there, or some other schmucks who got eaten by blood-seekers and the Society needs us to haul out their desiccated corpses, or something? This seems altogether uncharacteristically charitable."


The Midnight Mirror | The Mosquito Witch

Smine huffs at Dob. "You want my gold? You go where I send you. In this case, it's because someone asked for our help. Woman named Galia, gnome. Not a Pathfinder. Knows me, though. Knows we fix problems. She’s the one who sent a letter about the situation. Look her up when you get to Shimmerford. Would have a better idea of the situation on the ground. After that, find what’s causing the problem. Stop it. Report back.”

Grand Archive

CN female Bleachling gnome (Umbral gnome) Rogue 1 | HP 17/17 | AC 17 | F +4 | R +8 | W +6 |Per +6 | Stlth + 6 | Spd 25 | Focus -- | Active Conditions: None

Lissi watches from an unassuming, dim corner of the room, as the bigger folk and Dob have their back-and-forth with Smine. She feels like she should ask something, but she has no idea what. Eventually she pipes up, her voice high and reedy, with a noticeable tremor in it that doesn't match with her mostly emotionless face. "How far? To the place--Shimmerford? And do we walk, or is there transportation? I walk slow. Little legs." She rubs one foot with the other, then stares down, as if she's overstepped her bounds by speaking at all, let alone so many words.

Envoy's Alliance

NG male dwarf (Forge Dwarf) Fighter 1 | HP 23/23 | AC 17 (19 w/ shield) | F +8 | R +6 | W +5 |Per +7 | Stlth +1 | Spd 20 | Active Conditions: None

Bhadrim waits until Smine puts down the doll before picking it up, turning it over in his hands, studying it. After a few moments, he tosses it back on the table.

"Damned superstition," he rumbles, before looking at Smine. "It sounds to me like someone has decided to bring the myth to life, perhaps to try and swing some coin or take the land. If we find out there's a... mundane source to all this ridiculousness, do you want them dead or alive?"


The Midnight Mirror | The Mosquito Witch
Lissi "Sparknozzle" du Galt wrote:
"How far? To the place--Shimmerford? And do we walk, or is there transportation? I walk slow. Little legs."

"Walk? Goodness, no. Not even in normal times. I hired you a boat. Good ship. Good crew. They’ll take you down the river to Shimmerford. I’d stay inside while traveling, though. Clouds of mosquitoes are hanging by the shore and above the water. Doesn’t sound pleasant.”

Bhadrim Thunderhammer wrote:
"It sounds to me like someone has decided to bring the myth to life, perhaps to try and swing some coin or take the land. If we find out there's a... mundane source to all this ridiculousness, do you want them dead or alive?"

Smine shrugs. "Ask the locals. Probably depends on what the trouble is. I figure it’s likely a Ghlaunder worshipper. Something similar, anyway. Probably heard stories about the witch. Took advantage of them to cause trouble. Don't break any laws you don't have to, and don't get the locals upset. You're there to help them out. "

Grand Archive

Sorcerer (rogue) 3 | AC 19 (20 Shield Raised) | HP 29/29| F +6 R +7 W +7 | Init +5 Perception, +6 Stealth, +8 Deception|

So we go to see this Galia and she will give us some info about what's going on in this village.
I agree with you Bhadrim, something fishy is going on and just for that I'm curious!

Anything else we need to know Captain?

Horizon Hunters

Male Gnome (Fey Touched) Fighter 2 HP 30/30 AC 19 F17 R 17 W14 Perc +6 25 feet Cl DC 17 Sp DC 17

"I don't suppose there's any mosquito netting available locally here? Or at least antiplague in case they're carrying some backwater disease?" Dob asks, resigned to hear a negative response. "And who in all the planes is Ghlaunder? Some kind of blood god or bastard son of Lamashtu?"


The Midnight Mirror | The Mosquito Witch

Smine shrugs again. "I've told you what I know. You can bed here for the night. Boat heads out in the morning. Get your gear together and let me know if you need anything."

If you have other questions, you can still ask. Meanwhile, slot your boons and Pathfinder School agents let me know what gear you are requisitioning.

Grand Archive

CN female Bleachling gnome (Umbral gnome) Rogue 1 | HP 17/17 | AC 17 | F +4 | R +8 | W +6 |Per +6 | Stlth + 6 | Spd 25 | Focus -- | Active Conditions: None

Lissi waits for everyone else to ask their questions before wandering off to find a bed. She doesn't feel particularly tired but has nothing else to do. She feels a nagging suspicion there were questions they should have asked and failed to.

Stupid girl, It whispers. Stupid girl asks stupid questions.

She stops in her tracks, closes her eyes, and swallows. If she gives It a few seconds, It usually goes away on Its own...

When your stupid questions get you killed, I will pull the sinew from your bones and dance you like a marionette with them.

Now that is just gross. She lets out a little moan and a shudder. "Please stop," she whispers. She doesn't know if It listened or just got bored with the conversation, because It goes quiet.

She breathes a shaky sigh of relief, wipes her eyes, and crawls into bed.

Lissi is short of enough gold to purchase anything, so she's off to bed. In the morning, adventure!

Envoy's Alliance

NG male dwarf (Forge Dwarf) Fighter 1 | HP 23/23 | AC 17 (19 w/ shield) | F +8 | R +6 | W +5 |Per +7 | Stlth +1 | Spd 20 | Active Conditions: None

At the mention of "Ghlaunder worshipper", Bhadrim strokes his beard thoughtfully as he tries to figure out what he knows of this "Ghlaunder".

1d20 + 5 ⇒ (12) + 5 = 17 Religion check.

Bhadrim beds down for the night, rising early and going through some exercises to loosen his muscles.


The Midnight Mirror | The Mosquito Witch

Bhadrim recalls that Ghlaunder is the god of parasites and disease, and mosquitoes and bloodsuckers are creatures he favors. His worship isn't widespread, but pockets of cultists pop up here and there.

Bhadrim, in the future for recall knowledge, just give me your bonus and let me do a secret roll, just in case I have misinformation to spread on a critical failure. :-) In this case it wasn't an issue, since you have the resources of the lodge available.

Going to give a little more time for everyone to confirm they are done asking questions. Even if you aren't requisitioning items, make sure to post letting me know you are ready to go, and what boons you are slotting (even if it's just your faction boon).

Horizon Hunters

Male Gnome (Fey Touched) Fighter 2 HP 30/30 AC 19 F17 R 17 W14 Perc +6 25 feet Cl DC 17 Sp DC 17

"Alright, then. River journey tomorrow." Dob intones with resigned sighs.

If he can find them, Dob will purchase 2 elixers of lesser antiplague.

Grand Archive

Male CG Male Human Wizard 1 | HP 15/15 | AC: 15 | F +4 R +4 W +8 | Perc +6 | 25 feet | Focus 1/1 | | Class DC 17 | Active Conditions: None | Active Spells: Mage Armor
Skills:
Acrobatics +4, Arcana +7, Athletics +3, Crafting +7, Herbalism Lore +7, Medicine +6, Nature +6, Occultism +7, Religion +6, Society +7, Survival +6, Thievery +4, Underworld Lore +7

My mistake. I didn't realize you had to read the gameplay thread first for unread messages to start showing up, so I didn't realize we were already in the thick of things. I'll catch up and post asap. Sorry again!

Grand Archive

Male CG Male Human Wizard 1 | HP 15/15 | AC: 15 | F +4 R +4 W +8 | Perc +6 | 25 feet | Focus 1/1 | | Class DC 17 | Active Conditions: None | Active Spells: Mage Armor
Skills:
Acrobatics +4, Arcana +7, Athletics +3, Crafting +7, Herbalism Lore +7, Medicine +6, Nature +6, Occultism +7, Religion +6, Society +7, Survival +6, Thievery +4, Underworld Lore +7

As everyone is about to leave the forge and meeting with Venture-Captain Smine, a human male, slightly taller than normal, enters the lodge loudly, banging the door accidentally while cursing under his breath as ink covered quill and paper fall out of his backpack. Wearing a long dark blue coat made of tweed with leather patches on the elbows and chalk dust on the cuffs, his leather backpack is overflowing with various materials more fit for a librarian rather than an adventurer.

Brushing back dark hair with wisps of grey at his temples, he looks around the doorway appearing slightly lost and flustered, instinctively tugging at his goatee in thought.

"Yes, I believe they said this would be the right location. Pathfinder Lodge? Meeting with...oh yes, you must be Venture-Captain Smine. A please to meet you. You requested a historian and linguist as part of this endeavor, and the college supplied myself, Ezekiel Graystone. It’s a pleasure to meet you all!" The academic loudly declared with a smile, oblivious to everyone's annoyance with how late he was.

"Yes, well, as I was coming in, I heard someone mention something about the Mosquisto Witch? Fascinating story really, thought to be only legend or hearsay from ages ago. I look forward to helping determine if there's any merit to the stories. And I'm sorry, did someone mention we were traveling...by boat? Ezekiel asked, his face suddenly turning pale at the thought of water travel as he follow his newly annoyed colleagues out of the lodge.

Again, sorry for the delay. I'm all caught up and ready to rock.


The Midnight Mirror | The Mosquito Witch

Yeah, you have to actually post in the Gameplay thread for it to start showing up in your campaigns tab with updates. That's why GMs often open the thread early so people can "dot" in. Glad you're here now!

Because the pace of PbP makes it easy to forget things during an investigation, I've added a slide for "The Story So Far" and "Information Gathered". I'll update the former with what you do; feel free to add your own notes to the latter to keep them easy to find.

================================

The next morning you board the ship and make your way down the East Sellen River. Your journey is uneventful, though as Smine had mentioned, you begin to have issues with clouds of mosquitoes. As you reach the small town, the earth seems covered with writhing black masses of flying insects.

When you disembark at the dock, a gnome with blueberry-blue hair and copper skin emerges from a tiny house that has been mosquito-proofed with cloth and wax crammed into every crack and seam. She hurries over to greet you, wringing her hands and swatting away mosquitoes.

“Oh, thank goodness! Oh, thank goodness! You actually came! Smine actually sent someone! You must be them, right? No one comes here a-anymore unless they’re planning to help! Do you want to talk inside? My house is mostly mosquito-free! Can I get you anything? My beet juice is also mostly mosquito-free! Would you like to come sit down? A fresh haircut, maybe? Oh, thank goodness you’re here!”

Envoy's Alliance

NG male dwarf (Forge Dwarf) Fighter 1 | HP 23/23 | AC 17 (19 w/ shield) | F +8 | R +6 | W +5 |Per +7 | Stlth +1 | Spd 20 | Active Conditions: None

As the party board the ship, Bhadrim bangs random places loudly. Eventually he seems satisfied, and drops his pack on the deck, turning to face the others. Motioning for them to gather round, he waits until they do so.

"The Venture-Captain mentioned Ghlaunder last night. For the uninitiated, Ghlaunder is a god of parasites and disease, and they favour mosquitoes and other bloodsuckers," Bhadrim peers over the huddled throng at the various deckhands.

"Keep an eye out for anything out of the ordinary, especially if it might be, y'know, of a religious bent."

With his knowledge imparted, Bhadrim leans back to enjoy the voyage. He nibbles on some rations while they bob down the river. Once they arrive at their destination, Bhadrim is happy for someone with a tongue of a more silver hue to speak at first, although he intends to interject where necessary.

Horizon Hunters

Male Gnome (Fey Touched) Fighter 2 HP 30/30 AC 19 F17 R 17 W14 Perc +6 25 feet Cl DC 17 Sp DC 17

"Yes. ma'am, Smine did send us. You must be Galia. Some relief, however small, from the mosquitos would be most welcome, indeed." Dob offers her a smile, and follows her inside.

Vigilant Seal

Human Sorcerer 1 | HP 16/16 | AC 15| F +5; R +5; W +5 | Speed 25 ft | Morningstar +3 (1d6 P) | Perc +3

Vengis looks resigned to his fate after the river travel, and has kept grumbling to a minimum.

He swats a mosquito on his neck. "So--the problem's you've been facing. Why don't you tell us about them. The faster we can resolve this for you, the better," he says.


The Midnight Mirror | The Mosquito Witch

“W-well, you probably noticed the mosquitoes. There’ve been a lot of bloodseekers, too. Those are mosquitoes that are as big as your heads! The little ones are bad enough, but the big ones have been driving people out of the town. One even carried off poor Mrs. McClairby’s cat, and some of them killed all of Mr. Rujat’s prize cattle. It’s been really, really, really awful around here!”

Galia lowers her voice to a whisper. “Most people think it’s the witch. I thought that maybe it could have been a c-cultist of Ghlaunder, but that turned out to be wrong, so I don’t know what else it could be.”

Grand Archive

CN female Bleachling gnome (Umbral gnome) Rogue 1 | HP 17/17 | AC 17 | F +4 | R +8 | W +6 |Per +6 | Stlth + 6 | Spd 25 | Focus -- | Active Conditions: None

Sorry about the delay in posting. Busy busy busy day. It's my last semester before graduating (aw yiss) and my internship and senior seminar professors have me working like crazy. I will do better!

Lissi spends most of the boat trip sitting lotus-style at the bow, the hood of her fur-lined cloak down, letting the sun onto her ashy skin. It never makes a difference, but she keeps trying anyway. It works on the humans. Worth a shot, right?

When she sees their contact is another gnome, Lissi seems to sink into her cloak, trying to make herself even smaller than she is. Don't be stupid, girl. Ask questions.

At Galia's statement, she finally finds her voice and pipes up. "U-hm... Excuse me... How did you come to discover it wasn't cultists?"

She does a little math in her head. "Also... If the bloodseekers are big as a tall folk's head, it would take more than one to drain one cow, let alone a whole herd. Do these bloodseekers travel in swarms? If so, how large, in your estimate?"

That was dumb. Of course they travel in swarms, they're giant mosquitoes. She flinches instinctively and waits to be chastised.

Grand Archive

Male CG Male Human Wizard 1 | HP 15/15 | AC: 15 | F +4 R +4 W +8 | Perc +6 | 25 feet | Focus 1/1 | | Class DC 17 | Active Conditions: None | Active Spells: Mage Armor
Skills:
Acrobatics +4, Arcana +7, Athletics +3, Crafting +7, Herbalism Lore +7, Medicine +6, Nature +6, Occultism +7, Religion +6, Society +7, Survival +6, Thievery +4, Underworld Lore +7

Walking on uneasy legs with an air of sickness around him, Ezekiel had been violently ill the entire way on boat despite it being rather calm waters. Collecting himself as best he could, he took out a quill and small notebook, his hands transcribing blazingly fast despite the scholar never looking down to check his own writing.

"Curious indeed. There are several creatures that could be the culprit, a few specifics come to mind, but I hate to be hasty with my conjecture. Now if there really is a Mosquito Witch, the question isn't how is she terrorizing people, but more precisely why? If she's been a legend for 60 some odd years, why sparked her sudden activity as of late? Have there been any major changes or upheavals locally to spur such a resurgence?

Envoy's Alliance

NG male dwarf (Forge Dwarf) Fighter 1 | HP 23/23 | AC 17 (19 w/ shield) | F +8 | R +6 | W +5 |Per +7 | Stlth +1 | Spd 20 | Active Conditions: None

Bhadrim listens to Galia, and before he can ask about the cultists, Lissi pipes up. Bhadrim nodded in agreement. "Aye, there's a finality to that statement that seems out of place, given that the problem still exists."

"Also, where did the first attack occur?" he asks, once Ezekiel has finished his litany of questions.

Grand Archive

Sorcerer (rogue) 3 | AC 19 (20 Shield Raised) | HP 29/29| F +6 R +7 W +7 | Init +5 Perception, +6 Stealth, +8 Deception|

Good questions!
I would like to add another, if you mind? Do you remember something strange that occurred before the first incident?

Asks Kamil

mosquitos! Looks like home here...


The Midnight Mirror | The Mosquito Witch

When Lissi speaks up, Galia looks at her with a sadness in her eyes as she recognizes Lissi's condition, but she says nothing about it.

Lissi "Sparknozzle" du Galt wrote:
"U-hm... Excuse me... How did you come to discover it wasn't cultists?"

“Oh! Um. Yeah! Yeah! About that... um. So there was a Ghlaunder cultist who we found lived a little ways out in the woods! But when we found him the others got a teensy-tiny wee bit mad, and um... k-killed him. And then whacked him into pieces. And then burned his house to the ground with his body in it, and then salted the ground where the ashes were. But, um. The mosquitoes and bloodseekers didn’t leave. So I guess... it actually wasn’t him? I… I feel kind of bad about it now.”

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

Lissi "Sparknozzle" du Galt wrote:
"Also... If the bloodseekers are big as a tall folk's head, it would take more than one to drain one cow, let alone a whole herd. Do these bloodseekers travel in swarms? If so, how large, in your estimate?"

"Well, not so much 'swarms' as groups maybe? Six or ten or so?"

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

Ezekiel Graystone wrote:
"Have there been any major changes or upheavals locally to spur such a resurgence?
Kamil Durus wrote:
Do you remember something strange that occurred before the first incident?

“I don’t think so? Um, let me see. Mr. Albi’s daughter ran off with the traveling postman, and there was a big fuss about Mr. Vernon’s rooster getting out to harass Mrs. Favam’s ducks. I don’t think any of that would have caused this, though. Even Ms. Lyons d-didn’t seem to think anything was wrong, until the mosquitoes showed up.”

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

Bhadrim Thunderhammer wrote:
"Also, where did the first attack occur?" he asks, once Ezekiel has finished his litany of questions.

"Well, that's hard to say, it just sort of started all over! One day normal, then over the next few days BAM! So many mosquitoes!"

Envoy's Alliance

NG male dwarf (Forge Dwarf) Fighter 1 | HP 23/23 | AC 17 (19 w/ shield) | F +8 | R +6 | W +5 |Per +7 | Stlth +1 | Spd 20 | Active Conditions: None

Bhadrim scratches his beard while Galia speaks. Once she had said her piece, he turned his head towards the others.

"It seems to me that the first place to check would be the abode of this former Ghlaunder cultist, turn it over and see what we find. If that gives us no further information, we might need to think outside of the box," Bhadrim says.

"What can you tell us about this Ghlaunder cultist? Who were they in the community? Did they hold any position of power, or were they just a mad-person? And where did they live?" Bhadrim chewed his lip while he tried to think of anything else.

Vigilant Seal

Human Sorcerer 1 | HP 16/16 | AC 15| F +5; R +5; W +5 | Speed 25 ft | Morningstar +3 (1d6 P) | Perc +3

Vengis looks ill at ease as they discuss bugs and dirty work.

"I agree we should investigate the abode of the former cultist, or anywhere else you think we might find a lead. Are there any other places you think we could check? Where was the last sighting of this Mosquito Witch?"


As Vengis speaks, a cat walks up close to his leg. The cat seems unnerving and intimidating, with one eye substantially larger than the other and an intelligence that seems much too high for a normal cat.

It walks over Vengis prowls around his feet. Eventually, it stares at Lissi for some time, not breaking its gaze or even blinking, for that matter.

This is my familiar


The Midnight Mirror | The Mosquito Witch
Bhadrim Thunderhammer wrote:
"What can you tell us about this Ghlaunder cultist? Who were they in the community? Did they hold any position of power, or were they just a mad-person? And where did they live?" Bhadrim chewed his lip while he tried to think of anything else.

"Um, he was o-outside of town a bit, in the woods ... I can give you directions, but there's not much left there. He was sort of a hermit, nobody special."

-----------

Vengis Mountebank wrote:
"I agree we should investigate the abode of the former cultist, or anywhere else you think we might find a lead. Are there any other places you think we could check? Where was the last sighting of this Mosquito Witch?"

“Oh, no one's actually seen the Mosquito Witch in fifty ... no, sixty years! One of the kids who actually saw it, back in the day, still lives here. Ms. Lyons. She doesn’t much like strangers, though. I don’t think she much likes a-anyone, truth to be told.”

-----------

Galia gives you a basic run down of the people who haven't left town and the few businesses that are still open. I've put up a map with the locations marked. I don't have a map for the area outside of town, but if there is anyplace in particular you want to go, just tell me.


The Midnight Mirror | The Mosquito Witch

Vengis:
Your familiar comes back and paws at your pack, as if trying to open it, but not giving away that it actually could do so (based on the traits you have noted in your profile).

Grand Archive

Sorcerer (rogue) 3 | AC 19 (20 Shield Raised) | HP 29/29| F +6 R +7 W +7 | Init +5 Perception, +6 Stealth, +8 Deception|

Lets starts our investigations in town. We will have time to go outside and see by ourselves the place where the cultist was burned.
I would suggest starting by Ms. Lyons as she saw the "Witch".

Grand Archive

CN female Bleachling gnome (Umbral gnome) Rogue 1 | HP 17/17 | AC 17 | F +4 | R +8 | W +6 |Per +6 | Stlth + 6 | Spd 25 | Focus -- | Active Conditions: None

Lissi tries to hide her annoyance at the pity look and says, "So hermit. We could maybe speak to Ms. Lyons too, if we can convince her."

Vigilant Seal

Human Sorcerer 1 | HP 16/16 | AC 15| F +5; R +5; W +5 | Speed 25 ft | Morningstar +3 (1d6 P) | Perc +3

Vengis groans and opens his pack.

"This is hardly the time for this, is it?" he asks.


The Midnight Mirror | The Mosquito Witch

Everyone else: You see Vengis' cat pawing at his pack, and in response he opens it.

Vengis:
You see the creepy doll that V-C Smine showed you back at the lodge. You are fairly certain you didn't put it here.

Vigilant Seal

Human Sorcerer 1 | HP 16/16 | AC 15| F +5; R +5; W +5 | Speed 25 ft | Morningstar +3 (1d6 P) | Perc +3

Vengis recoils at the sight of the doll and pulls it from his pack.

"ਤੁਸੀਂ ਉਹ ਉਥੇ ਰੱਖ ਦਿੱਤਾ, ਨਹੀਂ!" he exclaims in a strange language.

Infernal:
"You put that there, didn't you?"


Surprisingly, the cat responds in the same tongue.

"ਮੈਂ ਬਿਲਕੁਲ ਨਹੀਂ ਕੀਤਾ. ਹਾਲਾਂਕਿ ਹੁਣ ਜਦੋਂ ਮੈਂ ਤੁਹਾਡੀ ਪ੍ਰਤੀਕ੍ਰਿਆ ਵੇਖਦਾ ਹਾਂ, ਇਹ ਉਹ ਚੀਜ਼ ਹੈ ਜੋ ਕਾਸ਼ ਮੈਂ ਕੀਤੀ ਹੁੰਦੀ," he says.

Infernal:
I most certainly did not. Though now that I see your reaction, it's something I wish I had done.


The Midnight Mirror | The Mosquito Witch

For everyone else: Vengis just pulled out the creepy Mosquito Witch doll that Smine was showing you at the lodge.

Galia looks at the doll and says, "Oh, that is one of those dolls we sell ... well, sold ... to tourists ... back when we had tourists ... back when we had people to sell things to the tourists..."

Grand Archive

Male CG Male Human Wizard 1 | HP 15/15 | AC: 15 | F +4 R +4 W +8 | Perc +6 | 25 feet | Focus 1/1 | | Class DC 17 | Active Conditions: None | Active Spells: Mage Armor
Skills:
Acrobatics +4, Arcana +7, Athletics +3, Crafting +7, Herbalism Lore +7, Medicine +6, Nature +6, Occultism +7, Religion +6, Society +7, Survival +6, Thievery +4, Underworld Lore +7

Ezekiel furiously joted down notes as Galia answered all their questions. As she mentioned the Ghlaunder cultist, he looked up with a pale face, shocked at how easily the community turned into a mob without enough evidence to justify their actions. As the Gnome recounted the various comings and goings of the village, one particular incident perked the Wizard's interest.

"If the mob set fire to the cultists' abode and 'whacked him to pieces' then there is likely little to be gleaned from further investigation there. I agree, proceeding to question Ms. Lyons seems like the most reasonable and logical course of action at this point."

Grand Archive

CN female Bleachling gnome (Umbral gnome) Rogue 1 | HP 17/17 | AC 17 | F +4 | R +8 | W +6 |Per +6 | Stlth + 6 | Spd 25 | Focus -- | Active Conditions: None

Dismissing the site of the hermit seems foolish. Galia could hardly be expected to know to look for things that would be pertinent. But she keeps her mouth shut. Yes, just go with what someone else says. Jump when they say "jump." Sheep.

She hates this voice in her head more than the... other thing in her head, because this voice is her own. It isn't as scary, but it hurts more.

She looks down at her shoes and waits for the others to decide.

Envoy's Alliance

NG male dwarf (Forge Dwarf) Fighter 1 | HP 23/23 | AC 17 (19 w/ shield) | F +8 | R +6 | W +5 |Per +7 | Stlth +1 | Spd 20 | Active Conditions: None

Bhadrim fixes Ezekiel with one eye.

"If the cultist is dead, then I doubt he had any control over this plague but the fact remains that he was a cultist of Ghlaunder, who as I've told you before, is a god of parasites and disease who favours mosquitoes and other bloodsuckers. Just because the man is dead, doesn't mean that his abode isn't tied to this somehow," Bhadrim said in a stern voice. "Anyway, the cultist is dead now, so I doubt he'll mind if we have a rummage through his belongings."

"However, I agree that this Ms. Lyons is likely to be the first port of call, even if only because she can likely give us more to the local history of this Mosquito Witch," he concurs, crossing his arms. He glances over to Vengis and arches an eyebrow.

"Can I take from your sudden reaction to the sight of that doll that you didn't put it there?"

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