[5e] Descent into Avernus

Game Master mishima


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Halfling Dragonslayer | HP: 33/34 | 0/1d8 & 0d6 | Disguise 1/1 | Camo 2/3 | Recover 0/3 | Fast Rit 1/1 |1st 3/4 | 2nd 1/3 | Inspiration!
Stats:
AC 15 | Str -1 Dex +6 Con +2 Int +7 Wis +1 Cha -1 | Init +3 | Perc +7, Darkvision 120 ft | Insight +1

"I would appreciate a room here. Preferably one without windows." Mal offers his preference.

"We can stage at the Three Old Kegs when we get ready for the Villa. Until then, we need to plan securely. Thanks captain."


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The Captain's Order

Motioning across the yard "Take the livery shack then." Stout brick walls just reaching a man's height, a clean roof of wattle and doub. Some forgotten respite from centuries old construction, retrofitted with a simple iron braced door. Adjacent, a range of energetic horses: many rounceys, most coursers and even a white-maned, sand coated destrier. Squires handle their animals as the black-browed cavalier looks on.

Inside is a bunch of saddles. No windows. ;D


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Halfling Dragonslayer | HP: 33/34 | 0/1d8 & 0d6 | Disguise 1/1 | Camo 2/3 | Recover 0/3 | Fast Rit 1/1 |1st 3/4 | 2nd 1/3 | Inspiration!
Stats:
AC 15 | Str -1 Dex +6 Con +2 Int +7 Wis +1 Cha -1 | Init +3 | Perc +7, Darkvision 120 ft | Insight +1

At the Livery Shack, planning to hit the Low Lantern and capture brother Amrik

The mean-looking halfling burns some incense in the shack hoping the smoke shows any invisible imps, while he waits for his squad members arrive. When they do, Mal does a last sweep, before extinguishing the flames, so they don't all suffocate. "Right. Hope everyone is healed up and ready to go. We've got to plan our hit on the Ellell. Our objective is brother A alive in custody and ledgers of disbursements for the Dee Three proving the connection."

"We should probably but the Ellell under surveiallance to confirm that brother A is aboard. And probably hit them during the day, when the Ellell is less busy. Anyone else have any other ideas?"

"On another topic, I was thinking about approaching Zodge's informant to get some information on the Veevee. I might be able to trade Veevee valuables for information and security. Because brother T will send an assassin after us, eventually. What do you think about that?

Veevee is the Vanthampur Villa. Zodge's informant is Tarina

Silver Crusade

| HP: 29/40[2]| Rage: 2/3{+2}|SnaX: 1/2 HD 3 melee: +5/2d6+3 |Init: +2 Perc: +3 | Insp = no |Human Barb3| AC: 16

'Well I do break things,' he analyses dispassionately as he passively smashes the sidewalk. It's just the price one pays to be an alpha predator.

This...this is not what I was expecting, Gorn thought, staring aghast at the ramshackle building.

"Like, don't you people have building codes and things?" he asks out loud and rhetorically.

Not one to be so easily cast aside, he tries the door.

Finding it shut securely, he goes around to the side and then the back.

Of course his plan was to find a back door and smash his way in. It's starting to look like someone is having sport with him. When that happens, -something- has to break.

This is the way.


Male human ftr 5 | AC 17 (19) | hp 46/47 | 5 HD (1 used) | Saves S +6, D +2, C +6, I +0, W +1, Ch +1 | Second Wind used [ ] | Inspiration [ ] | Action Surge used [ ] | passive Perception 14

Are we done dealing with the Dead Three relics and altars?


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No, you walked downstairs to the first altar then nothing. I figured you were waiting for Grim to get back.


Male human ftr 5 | AC 17 (19) | hp 46/47 | 5 HD (1 used) | Saves S +6, D +2, C +6, I +0, W +1, Ch +1 | Second Wind used [ ] | Inspiration [ ] | Action Surge used [ ] | passive Perception 14

Okay, that makes sense. Hopefully, Helaman is okay...


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We can jump around in time a bit here. Let me know if there's anything else Donal does in this bit of downtime/sandbox. 10 days.


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Livery or Die

The smoke does not reveal any hidden invisible imps, and also serves to mask the strong scents coming off the saddles.


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An Uncommon Taste

As you go to try the front door, your boot strikes the fallen doorknocker...

Dex(Acrobatics) 12:
You do not fully crush the quite alive and quite perturbed river sprite that looks like a fallen doorknocker which was sunbathing on the step.

A mosquito's voice from below screeches "Sei udún, gen cín dál off nin hi!! *urg* Up! Off me, stupid!"

Fail:
You feel a tiny skull pop beneath your heel. That doorknocker had a skull inside it? What the hell kind of place is this?

Silver Crusade

| HP: 29/40[2]| Rage: 2/3{+2}|SnaX: 1/2 HD 3 melee: +5/2d6+3 |Init: +2 Perc: +3 | Insp = no |Human Barb3| AC: 16

Acrobatty!: 1d20 + 2 ⇒ (17) + 2 = 19

Gorn bends down almost double to see what wee fey of a thing is shouting some unintelligible gutter-speak at him.

"Das ist eine große Klappe bei einer kleinen Sache," he barks back, just as happy to trade insults in different languages as the next guy. "The operative word here being 'klein' or 'small'. And your big mouth would be of better use if it had more civil words in it."

Deciding he had given as good as he got he does indeed give the thing some room. He rests on one knee to get a better look at it.

"Greetings, small one. I think we got off on the wrong...foot." He snickers, proud of his little joke. Good ones like that don't just end up in one's lap and ya had to get them when ya could.

"I am Gorn. Steelbreaker. And I was sent to intrude on your personal outdoor spa by this letter," he says, holding the invite up. He was greatly doubting its sincerity and had no qualms about sharing it around now. "It seems someone is having sport with me, which meant troubles for you. So it seems, to me, that we on the same side, for the nonce."


Male human ftr 5 | AC 17 (19) | hp 46/47 | 5 HD (1 used) | Saves S +6, D +2, C +6, I +0, W +1, Ch +1 | Second Wind used [ ] | Inspiration [ ] | Action Surge used [ ] | passive Perception 14

Donal heads down to the part of town that the refugees are gathered Outside the Basilisk Gate? out of uniform and looks for anyone that looks like they may be connected to the church.

Wisdom (Perception): 1d20 + 3 ⇒ (7) + 3 = 10


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AC18(20) |HP 38/[40]| Str+3 Int+1 Wis+6 Dex+0 Con+2 Cha+2|Init + 0|Percept +6|Insight +6|Invest +4| War Priest Attacks 0/[3] Inspiration [Y] Channel Divinity 1/[1] HD 2/[5] Male Human Doomguide Acolyte of Kelemvor Cleric (War)/5

Back with priest at the shrine

He watches with interest as Donal is treated and is grateful the old hand has decided to come to the bathhouse to help.

As the old priest prepares, Grim writes a full account of all the politicians and politics involved, seals it and hands it on to him.

This must get the hierarchy as safely and securely as you can. It is THAT important. Only you and I know you have that packet. Ensure, please, that it stays that way until you are able to ensure it's safe delivery into proper hands.

The trio then head to the bathhouse.

Tell me if you know of any devout or deserving armoursmiths. I have some work that needs must be handled and it should pay well.

At the Bathhouse

He has scarce respect for many of his fellow flaming fists, especially this shower, but he does his best to keep his expression locked in its normal sour/serious expression... even when the local fist is humiliated somewhat.

Ready to head below to see to these physical manifestations of evil cleansed when you are...

Not sure if you want to hand wave this or not as the DM


Male human ftr 5 | AC 17 (19) | hp 46/47 | 5 HD (1 used) | Saves S +6, D +2, C +6, I +0, W +1, Ch +1 | Second Wind used [ ] | Inspiration [ ] | Action Surge used [ ] | passive Perception 14

I think we need to roll Religion checks.

Religion: 1d20 + 2 ⇒ (18) + 2 = 20


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The Tattered Temple (Grim)

Raylen closes his eyes in concentration, turning the missive in his calloused, cracked hands. He finally nods in understanding "Were it only Myrkul it would be enough, but the three combined...yes, I must agree. The leadership at the Tower of Skulls must be made aware...and further I must dare ask why their divinations could not see this forthcoming. Perhaps the Reach has turned east, and forgotten the west. Troubling indeed."

The father gathered the ostensorium and other exotics needed for the rituals quickly, but with the sure hand of a practiced artist of the Powers.

Sorry, I could have sworn I answered about the smith, but apparently not.

On the way he chatted Grim about some industry "Best smiths you'll find lining the runup to the Seatower of Balduran. They build their forges on top of each other vying for the coin pouches of your merc buddies. Course theres also the dwarves out in Blackgate, they get the first pick of ingots and magics running down from Watergate. Doubt you can get out with the lockdown though. Some great ones out in Little Calimshan too, if you like it fancy...they run metal and gem like river and stone."


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Under New Management (Grim/Donal)

No, not really wanting to hand wave it. XD This is something you guys asked for and wanted to do so I'd rather it be awesome/amazing/have lasting impact on your characters.

The entrail crowned, dark reactive altar of Bhaal stood defiant before the trio of planar channelers. Raylen explained the role each would have "One must be the Source, pulling the 8 aspects of god forth from the Crystal Spire and motivating them to inhabit the trans-space marked by the stone. Another, the Sink to drain the existing foul nature of Bhaal away from this focus...the Sink must provide a tempting target for this evil, or it will not vacate. Finally, one must be the Guardian, who ensures the correct patterns cohabit the movement of Source flowing to stone, and stone flowing to Sink...with no outside disturbances. So, Source, Sink, and Guardian...which do you choose?"

Make your choice and roll religion. Donal, no need to roll again.


Male human ftr 5 | AC 17 (19) | hp 46/47 | 5 HD (1 used) | Saves S +6, D +2, C +6, I +0, W +1, Ch +1 | Second Wind used [ ] | Inspiration [ ] | Action Surge used [ ] | passive Perception 14

Donal looks from the old Doomguide to Grim, I will be the sink. It is my duty.


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An Uncommon Taste (Gorn)

The miniscule creature brushed off a small dandelion it used as a hat, tightening a toothpick bastard sword onto its quad-winged back. In Gorn's defense, its androgynous body and most of its clothing had the sheen of pure silver and was therefore rather easy to mistake for an artistic metallurgical cast. "*sigh* Yeah, yeah, yeah, I know who you are, crab-smacker. Scoot over so I can throw the wards..."

Though its hands were no larger than blueberries, the series of gestures they flitted through commanded your attention. When it opened its mouth, the sound that echoed forth was like a cat scrambling up a glass wall. Fast syllables built momentum, with the slightest hesitation meaning ground was lost, and needed redoubled effort.

The effect was immediate. A burning red line starting a few feet above the door proceeded to roll across the mansion's exterior, forming a large circle. The geometry pressed inward, impossibly, creating a cylindrical surface that drilled straight into the wall...into some structure with greater truth than what was before. Here then was the true Mandorcai Mansion, resplendent in aesthetic and indulgent with wealth...emerald veined marble floors, ivory walls with gold trim...every vase and fixture designed to capture a unique expression. A house of wonders.

"You can sit there in the waiting room, or wait here in the sitting room. But if you feel brave, the kitchen is there past the foyer, down the steps, and the last left. Honestly I'd hurry if I were you, most of the guests' harbingers have already arrived. I expect the first carriage soon."

You hear some idle chatter from within, tones and guttural clicks in a language that resembles neither Common nor Orc.

Silver Crusade

| HP: 29/40[2]| Rage: 2/3{+2}|SnaX: 1/2 HD 3 melee: +5/2d6+3 |Init: +2 Perc: +3 | Insp = no |Human Barb3| AC: 16

Gorn's mouth opens and stands agape at the powerful magicks revealed now. So too, there are a great many questions. Why hide such wealth, in this place, where wealth is meant to be displayed? Why have the entrance so in-carefully guarded? Too many for answers. Perhaps, there will be no answers at all.

"Gratitude...uh, you seem to have me at a loss. You know of me? How is that? And who are you? Are you some seneschal meant to greet me? If so, then, in the future, you might want to pick different places as your waiting place. Had I not almost annihilated you, I would have started crab-cracking the door. And then things would have been...awkward.

Can you at least tell me your name?"

If an answer is quick in forthcoming, that's really all he has time for. As things are he -is- brave, and neither waiting room nor sitting room nor foyer have any means to capture his attention. Not when perhaps the greatest kitchen he has ever, and probably will ever, seen is now begging for his entrance, to be held by him, used by him, and begging for him to make himself its master.

One does not leave such situations in waiting.

Without another thought (nor even to think this might be an elaborate trap, for with such finery he can guarantee that if any try to take him here, he will make it more costly than the effort is worth) he follows the directions, all five senses in perfect unison.

He is happy to be, as the Storyteller goes, within sight of a palace and within smell of a kitchen.


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An Uncommon Taste (Gorn)

"Well the Master told me about you, of course. Seafood specialist, right? Look, I don't get paid enough for formality. But since you asked..." with its dragonfly wings it hovers aloft to eye height, and bows in an imitation of regality "Azutherys Milkensporrel, Brookrider of the Plumsprinkle Clan. There are some who call me 'Zute'..." Yet the doorstep conversation ends as abruptly as it began, as Gorn eagerly awaits the great culinary exploits within.

Merrily but purposefully the chef waltzes past the sitting and waiting harbingers, hardly noticing their bizarre appearances. Did that one have a compound eye...? Na, probably just the latest fashion in spectacles. Was that one just a pile of black goo with a bunch of eyeballs in it...? Ah, no, just an unfortunate clutz that fell in a ditch. Did that horned creature have a mouth were its hand was supposed to be...? Again it couldn't be, just an obese tiefling with a puppeteering habit.

Insight 15:
Despite your determination to reach your goal without further obstacle, there is a nagging instinct within that causes something of a mental double take. Those creatures were horrid monstrosities after all...what could that mean for the 10 guests themselves, or more importantly, the menu? But then again lingering further would serve little purpose, without even knowing the tools and stores available.

The lavishness of the mansion did not taper as Gorn proceeded deeper and deeper, but there was a strange dynamic quality to everything. Passing chamber after chamber, some rooms seemed to elevate, others to rotate...like the spokes of a wheel revealing something similar after each turn. Sunlight streamed through the windows to the east just as much as from the west, while the skylight above showed the great orb burning direcly overhead. Reaching for the stairwell, it seemed to shift underhand a few inches...maybe it all was just too much wine in the applesauce this morning.

Such thoughts of shiftiness were set aside immediately upon reaching the kitchen; a kitchen which indeed was no tumbledown scullery. A kitchen whose right-hand wing was a prison for a number of bizarre creatures, the most noticeable being a two-story tall crab-like humanoid...its great pincers bound by strong steel chains to the floor of its massive cage. It roars in rage but the ferocity is muffled by a leather gag about its mandibles and maxillae.

Besides these freshest of meats, the pantries unfurl to reveal a carefully inventoried stock exotic vegetables, herbs, spices, cheeses, wines, grains, and other stores...some of which the chef couldn't even identify but was exited to taste. They even had a rothe for milking in an adjacent stable.

The tools of the trade were likewise complete, with whisks, garlic mincers, avocado slicers, herb scissors, sausage makers...each time the chef asked himself ::I wonder if they have a XXX?:: he always seemed to find XXX a few moments later.

There was only one door, marked with a small sign and strange writing, that would not budge and allow inspection. Perhaps the cold meat stores or a microbrewery...either would make sense given the layout of this professionally designed kitchen.


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Summary of Some Stuff:

-Mal's player is waiting to discuss the party approach to the Low Lantern in the Livery Shack. All characters are there. Whatever's decided, taking action on those plans will effectively end the downtime/sandbox and bring us back to the Main Quest(tm)

-I'm waiting on Grim to at least choose role and roll religion to continue Dead Three dungeon cleansing scene

-Gorn's scene is ongoing, but will likely conclude soon

-Still time to do anything else you want with the tenday.


AC18(20) |HP 38/[40]| Str+3 Int+1 Wis+6 Dex+0 Con+2 Cha+2|Init + 0|Percept +6|Insight +6|Invest +4| War Priest Attacks 0/[3] Inspiration [Y] Channel Divinity 1/[1] HD 2/[5] Male Human Doomguide Acolyte of Kelemvor Cleric (War)/5
Donal the Seeker wrote:
Donal looks from the old Doomguide to Grim, I will be the sink. It is my duty.

It seems right I be the source, and Father Raylen, no one is better suited to the knowledge requirements that the Guardian position requires than you.

Religion: 1d20 + 5 ⇒ (12) + 5 = 17

Silver Crusade

| HP: 29/40[2]| Rage: 2/3{+2}|SnaX: 1/2 HD 3 melee: +5/2d6+3 |Init: +2 Perc: +3 | Insp = no |Human Barb3| AC: 16

'This...is not the usual clientele I'm used to,' Gorn admitted to himself as he made his way into the palace. He wasn't really sure what he had expected, probably overly-dressed poshes that only cared that their food was as un-pronounceable as their tailor.

Insight!: 1d20 + 1 ⇒ (6) + 1 = 7

That he had found himself in a menagerie of the who's who of extra-worldly...things...was, even to him, a bit disconcerting.

But most of that burned away like morning frost when we got to the kitchen. Yep. Best. Kitchen. Ever. He lost track of time as he first randomly, and then systematically, went through every door, pantry, locker, drawer, nook and cranny to take account and stock of all the tools of the trade that could be seen.

'But I bet they don't have a rice strainer. Hardly anyone has a rice strainer. I bet I'll never find a--oop, there it is, it's just a better kind of rice strainer than I've ever seen.

Wait, am I supposed to...prepare that guy?' he asks, thinking about the giant-crab-man-thing. 'That. IS a LOT of crab meat.' He hoped he'd have help other wise he'd be a fortnight just killing the thing, never mind preparing it for table.

'Yeah, probably a micro-brewery,' he thinks at the locked door. When he found the mistress of the place he'd be sure to ask. And get access. And a few samples.

So...where is the mistress of the place? Did they expect a Chef de Cuisine to prepare a Big Two One without so much as a Sous Chef or Saucier to hand to assist? Impossible. The food would be old enough to vote and demand rights before it was served.

As one simply MUST needs not be hungry when preparing for a great work, Gorn sliced himself off a healthy chunk of a white cheese that tasted something between a well-done steak and honeysuckle. When munching it he went in search of...well kitchen staff would be nice, but the person who was going to hand over a bag of the much-lauded compensation would also be good.


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Foraging for a Friend (Donal)

It was a sad scene at the Basilisk Gate. In their irrational search for the 2000 members of the paladin order of Hellriders, the Fist had slowed the checkpoint to a halt. What ordinarily might be at worst a long line and a stiff bribe was now a sprawling camp...a profitable one for the opportunistic mercenaries given nearly total authority.

Illness, squalor, and exploitation caused an aura of fear, sadness, and quiet rage.

A few tendays ago these people may have called themselves lucky. By virtue of their familial plots in the feudal scheme, they were spared the fate of being dragged into the endless crater along with the rest of the city-state's 30,000 inhabitants. But now, some might wonder who truly got the worst side of that deal.

Donal was certain he would find an ally of Torm there amongst the downtrodden. After all, Elturgard was a theocracy of Torm and Elturel its capital...ruled indeed by no less than a high priest of Torm, the so-called 'High Observer' Thavius Kreeg. Worship of Torm was widespread, for who could doubt the splendor of the Companion, the never setting second Sun which had hovered over the city for decades, making all of Elturgard a land of unending daylight. Such was surely the providence of Torm, forever banishing undead and the darkling races from his blessed lands.

It was not more than 20 paces into the thick crowd before a familiar carol could be heard, a mother and her 3 children joined in hand and singing praise to Torm despite their fate.


Male human ftr 5 | AC 17 (19) | hp 46/47 | 5 HD (1 used) | Saves S +6, D +2, C +6, I +0, W +1, Ch +1 | Second Wind used [ ] | Inspiration [ ] | Action Surge used [ ] | passive Perception 14

Donal makes his way to the four of them and takes the mother by the arm, We need to talk. Come, little ones, time to find a place to play.


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Under New Management (Grim/Donal)

The altar of Bhaal stood at the center of a ritualistic hexagon marked by a mixture of silver powder and gravedust, orange (almost brass) colored candles, and the recitation of certain holy blessings. The obstinate stone seemed to repel such dressings the way a flower recoils at midnight...as if sensing it was to be cut from its nourishment and had reached its time to die.

For the first few minutes, the trio of channelers spoke in unison, reading a precise order of phrases and gestures from previously prepared scrolls of the Power. The silver-grave dust began to lift from the ground, forming now a radiant mist that enclosed stone, ritualists, and ostensorium all. This was not a barrier, but a vessel, phasing the servitors of the divine to a cohabitant space...one that could better facilitate the interactions between mortal and immortal.

Source, Sink, and Guardian then were the poetry of this interaction. A rhythm and timbre all men and women of god recite daily, but here made manifest.

Donal choose the role of Source. Despite having no official authority, given his time in the Daggorford orphanage surrounded by other Tormtar, he was as much a man of the church as Grim and Raylen. Engaging the first quatrain, none would call his performance anything less than compelling. The correct Aspect was summoned, felt in the channelers' hearts more than seen with their eyes.

On the other side of the hexagonal dome stood the Doomguide, acting as Sink. Those who conspired with the Mortarchs and Necrobanes constituting the Judge of the Damned's clergy were no strangers to horror, and when the Aspect of Bhaal was wrought loose from the stone...Grim did not flinch. His actions were the pillar forming the enjambment.

Religion (Raylen): 1d20 + 4 ⇒ (12) + 4 = 16

When Raylen drew his bastard sword, it immediately sparked ablaze with a second skin, superimposed with the image of the legendary Fatal Touch wielded by Kelemvor himself. His eyes likewise glowed with an otherworldly hue, as he scanned the shared space for any foul entities that would interfere...

1d100 ⇒ 33

...yet there were none that would dare. The sentinel's watch thus provided the envoi.

Radiant energy gushed as a waterfall from Source, weathering the stone, while dark energy scattered tempted by the Sink's beckoning. When the Guardian sheathed his sword, the mist settled again to dust, and none doubted that before them now stood an Altar of Kelemvor.

Everyone made the DC 15 check to convert.


Male human ftr 5 | AC 17 (19) | hp 46/47 | 5 HD (1 used) | Saves S +6, D +2, C +6, I +0, W +1, Ch +1 | Second Wind used [ ] | Inspiration [ ] | Action Surge used [ ] | passive Perception 14

Do we also have to roll for the statues?


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Quote:
So, how about this for some options: A)you could outright destroy an altar using black powder or smashing to bits. We could do a group roll of Grim, Donal, and this guy to represent how well the ritual goes with higher being less likely to have repercussions. B)You could negate the connection to the current power leaving the stone intact. This would require a healing spell, restoration, or a non-orison dealing radiant energy. Again, a group roll for how well the ceremony is pulled off. C)Convert the altar. Same as B, but the group roll DC would be higher. Z)The statues are just wood. If they are indeed themselves sacred historical relics or house them, destroying them would be just like destroying a mundane item. Still the group roll.

Yes, for the statues you're just destroying them. The group roll is just to notice or evade any possible repercussions. There's also an altar of Bane (where the party fought Yig and the gauntlets, and found the first torture victim) and an altar of Myrkul (which the party did not discover the first time through, but is right down the hall and easy enough to locate in the now vacated dungeon).


AC18(20) |HP 38/[40]| Str+3 Int+1 Wis+6 Dex+0 Con+2 Cha+2|Init + 0|Percept +6|Insight +6|Invest +4| War Priest Attacks 0/[3] Inspiration [Y] Channel Divinity 1/[1] HD 2/[5] Male Human Doomguide Acolyte of Kelemvor Cleric (War)/5

Kelemvor be praised!, he proclaimed, hugging the altar, tears streaming down his cheeks.

He never dreamed he would see, let alone be part of something so miraculous... so sacred.

He turned to the others, and straightened.

Thank you, his voice thick. Let us proceed. We still have much to search and to cleanse.


Male human ftr 5 | AC 17 (19) | hp 46/47 | 5 HD (1 used) | Saves S +6, D +2, C +6, I +0, W +1, Ch +1 | Second Wind used [ ] | Inspiration [ ] | Action Surge used [ ] | passive Perception 14

Donal nods. He is relatively silent throughout, only stopping to utter a prayer when they need to.


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An Uncommon Taste (Gorn)

For a few irritating moments the lonely chef wandered, increasingly prey to a series of unfortunate but ultimately harmless accidents. First stepping on a spatula and launching a salt shaker missile a few feet behind himself. Next the cheese he was eating mysteriously disappeared, to be replaced with a trail of morsels leading to nowhere. Then there was the thunderous, booming flatulence that he prayed didn't come from the rothe. All accompanied by a chorus of chittering snickers from the shadows.

The letter had promised an experienced kitchen team at his command, but they were certainly no where in sight.

Mercifully a raven alighted upon a pan handle, squawking a quick avian greeting (was there a rookery in here?) but also speaking in a language Gorn understood (what was in that cheese?) "Hey there, you look lost? Hungry? Shouldn't we get started? The others are getting kinda bored." tilting its head inquisitively. "Ah right, you probably can't see them. But don't worry, we can hear you and work better this way. Come on, get dressed and tell us what you need. We can't disappoint Master." before flying off to the eastern wall, where a tall lazy-suzan spun round to reveal a toque blance, double-breasted white jacket, and of course an apron (sporting a rather tacky "I ❤️️ Crabs" logo).

If Gorn is going to go through with it, for sanity's sake lets say the quality of the meal produced will be represented by 3 rolls roughly corresponding to 7 of the 21 courses each. I imagine Gorn cooks more by taste than memorized recipe, so this is a wisdom rather than intelligence check with your chef's utensils proficiency added.

Feel free to probe and ask questions, or do something completely different as your character demands as well of course.


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Under New Management (Grim/Donal)

The altar of Bane was still heavily blood-stained from its final victim. Here again was the conduit of dark magics that stole a poor soul's life essence, infusing it into violent ebony gauntlets...only the great Tyrant could find such creative means of oppression. It would never happen again, if the determined trio had anything to say about it.

Raylen kept his distance at a few paces and began lighting the candles...

Same sort of deal, religion rolls. Feel free to embellish if not totally take charge of what your character is doing during the ritual.


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Foraging for a Friend (Donal)

Quote:
Donal makes his way to the four of them and takes the mother by the arm, We need to talk. Come, little ones, time to find a place to play.

Donal felt much more bone than meat on the woman's frail limb "What?! No, never again! Release me at once!" she tears up and struggles as the kids hide behind her skirt. Other men in the crowd turn with stern faces, but none have the energy to intervene.

After Donal proves his true intentions, the oldest of the children take the others back to their ragged street shelter (a taught patchwork of goatskin as a lean-to). "...then..then what is it you want of me? I'm just a weaver's wife..."


Male human ftr 5 | AC 17 (19) | hp 46/47 | 5 HD (1 used) | Saves S +6, D +2, C +6, I +0, W +1, Ch +1 | Second Wind used [ ] | Inspiration [ ] | Action Surge used [ ] | passive Perception 14

Donal stands before the altar of the archnemesis of his own god with trepidation. He begins the liturgy of rebuke...

Religion: 1d20 + 2 ⇒ (10) + 2 = 12

He falters, momentarily, as the oppressive weight of the Black Hand's relic radiates over him...


Male human ftr 5 | AC 17 (19) | hp 46/47 | 5 HD (1 used) | Saves S +6, D +2, C +6, I +0, W +1, Ch +1 | Second Wind used [ ] | Inspiration [ ] | Action Surge used [ ] | passive Perception 14
GM Infinity wrote:

Foraging for a Friend (Donal)

Quote:
Donal makes his way to the four of them and takes the mother by the arm, We need to talk. Come, little ones, time to find a place to play.
Donal felt much more bone than meat on the woman's frail limb "What?! No, never again! Release me at once!" she tears up and struggles as the kids hide behind her skirt. Other men in the crowd turn with stern faces, but none have the energy to intervene.

Donal gives the woman a steely look, The hound ever sits at your side, even if he looks vicious. The reference should be enough, but I have a cover to keep.

Quote:
After Donal proves his true intentions, the oldest of the children take the others back to their ragged street shelter (a taught patchwork of goatskin as a lean-to). "...then..then what is it you want of me? I'm just a weaver's wife..."

I am a Torm's Hand. We are about to embark on all-out war against the Dark Three and I need help. Can you deliver a message for me to a member of the church amongst you? I need to be sufficiently armed before we walk into this.

Donal fishes around in his pack and produces five bundles, placing them in the woman's hands along with a written message, Torm's Hand needs armor to protect from the Dead Three. War is brewing. Coin will come. I will revisit on the fourth moon. --The Seeker. Invoking the Shelter of the Faithful Background Feature.

Persuasion with Advantage: 2d20 + 1 ⇒ (14, 2) + 1 = 17 Just made 15, barely. Cost: 1d6 ⇒ 5 Damn, I will be short 100 gp. Hopefully, I can make a little coin before the four days are up!


AvernusArt 2Grid
Mal wrote:


At the Livery Shack, planning to hit the Low Lantern and capture brother Amrik

The mean-looking halfling burns some incense in the shack hoping the smoke shows any invisible imps, while he waits for his squad members arrive. When they do, Mal does a last sweep, before extinguishing the flames, so they don't all suffocate. "Right. Hope everyone is healed up and ready to go. We've got to plan our hit on the Ellell. Our objective is brother A alive in custody and ledgers of disbursements for the Dee Three proving the connection."

"We should probably but the Ellell under surveiallance to confirm that brother A is aboard. And probably hit them during the day, when the Ellell is less busy. Anyone else have any other ideas?"

"On another topic, I was thinking about approaching Zodge's informant to get some information on the Veevee. I might be able to trade Veevee valuables for information and security. Because brother T will send an assassin after us, eventually. What do you think about that?

Quick repost if anyone missed it. Mal's player has been waiting for party response for a few days, with the alternative option to chat in discussion on the same topic. Don't leave the evil sorc hangin' ;D


AC18(20) |HP 38/[40]| Str+3 Int+1 Wis+6 Dex+0 Con+2 Cha+2|Init + 0|Percept +6|Insight +6|Invest +4| War Priest Attacks 0/[3] Inspiration [Y] Channel Divinity 1/[1] HD 2/[5] Male Human Doomguide Acolyte of Kelemvor Cleric (War)/5
"Mal" Malaric wrote:

At the Livery Shack, planning to hit the Low Lantern and capture brother Amrik

The mean-looking halfling burns some incense in the shack hoping the smoke shows any invisible imps, while he waits for his squad members arrive. When they do, Mal does a last sweep, before extinguishing the flames, so they don't all suffocate. "Right. Hope everyone is healed up and ready to go. We've got to plan our hit on the Ellell. Our objective is brother A alive in custody and ledgers of disbursements for the Dee Three proving the connection."

"We should probably but the Ellell under surveiallance to confirm that brother A is aboard. And probably hit them during the day, when the Ellell is less busy. Anyone else have any other ideas?"

"On another topic, I was thinking about approaching Zodge's informant to get some information on the Veevee. I might be able to trade Veevee valuables for information and security. Because brother T will send an assassin after us, eventually. What do you think about that?

Veevee is the Vanthampur Villa. Zodge's informant is Tarina

Your... world is strange to me Mal. But in for a copper, in for a gold as they say. I'll follow your lead. The ledgers are, as you say, going to help prove the case. That said, perhaps we could arrange or pay for a suitable distraction to draw their eyes and guards. A hungry desperate mob of refugees? We'd gave to guarantee food for them... pricy in these desperate times. But we can do both good and have our distraction.

He sighs.

As for the prospect of an assassin? I suppose we'll need to be used of that. One way or the other.


AC18(20) |HP 38/[40]| Str+3 Int+1 Wis+6 Dex+0 Con+2 Cha+2|Init + 0|Percept +6|Insight +6|Invest +4| War Priest Attacks 0/[3] Inspiration [Y] Channel Divinity 1/[1] HD 2/[5] Male Human Doomguide Acolyte of Kelemvor Cleric (War)/5
Donal the Seeker wrote:

Donal stands before the altar of the archnemesis of his own god with trepidation. He begins the liturgy of rebuke...

He falters, momentarily, as the oppressive weight of the Black Hand's relic radiates over him...

Praying mightily, he fails to notice Donal's faltering liturgy, but even he feels the presence of great evil here fighting their ritual. He is fortunate in that his own prayers are as second nature, and he is still buoyed by their last success.

Religion: 1d20 + 5 ⇒ (12) + 5 = 17

He sprinkles holy water with gusto, flinging it about. He calls in the healing peaceful presence of a righteous rest, one release from burdens and a satisfaction of a life well lived into the underground chamber.

Thats 25gp there... hoping it's worth an advantage roll OR a +1 to some needy roller. I bought 2 way back when I first met Father Reylan


AC18(20) |HP 38/[40]| Str+3 Int+1 Wis+6 Dex+0 Con+2 Cha+2|Init + 0|Percept +6|Insight +6|Invest +4| War Priest Attacks 0/[3] Inspiration [Y] Channel Divinity 1/[1] HD 2/[5] Male Human Doomguide Acolyte of Kelemvor Cleric (War)/5

- At the Seatower of Balduran, street of Armourers -

The priest is careful to assess each of the smithies in turn, walking back and forth among the throng of merchants, artisans, delivery servants and mercenaries. Apprentices yell out their masters services above the din of ringing metal and shouted conversations.

He's looking for one who looks devout, if not in Kelemvors faith then in a Torm or similar deity. Evendur is not looking for the untrustworthy displays of piety but in a solid somber forge. One not given to cursing and swearing, and at least pays their forge shrines the occasional glance.

Perception: 1d20 + 5 ⇒ (10) + 5 = 15

He finds two that might serve his purposes. Both seem busy. He picks the one closest to where he stands and pushes in, hoping his Flaming Fist badge might get him some deference with those vying to get the attention of the smiths wife, who is deftly managing the small crowd of people seeking either pick ups or payments.

The sack hits her counter with a clatter.

A weeks rush job here - plate that needs repairing, and a fresh pair of gauntlets. The repairs should be basic. New straps and harness ties. It's time that's the factor. Can this be done and at what price?

Persuasion: 1d20 + 1 ⇒ (8) + 1 = 9

His badge, as well as his grim demeanour just mark him as yet another Fist, no better or worse than any other jumped up mercenary with a badge.


Halfling Dragonslayer | HP: 33/34 | 0/1d8 & 0d6 | Disguise 1/1 | Camo 2/3 | Recover 0/3 | Fast Rit 1/1 |1st 3/4 | 2nd 1/3 | Inspiration!
Stats:
AC 15 | Str -1 Dex +6 Con +2 Int +7 Wis +1 Cha -1 | Init +3 | Perc +7, Darkvision 120 ft | Insight +1

At the Livery Shack, planning to hit the Low Lantern and capture brother Amrik

Mal nods at Grim and replies, "frankly, this is not my world either. I'm just being realistic. We just stole a whole lotta treasure from one of the Dukes of the city and disrupted her plan against the Flaming Fist. She has already sent an assassin to kill her own son. And, she uses invisible devils to collect information. She is dangerous."

"It's just a matter of time until she hunts us down." He lets that sink in wondering if any of his new Fisters will understand the danger that they are now in. He resolves to go collect information on his own.

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

At the Elfsong Tavern.

Mal dresses up in his new threads (traveler's clothes instead of commoner clothes) looking little like the grubby rumor monger who was here a few days ago. The less mean-looking halfling casually enjoys a few drinks until he can get a private audience with Tarina.

He thanks her for the information and has a proposal for her: He tells her that his crew knows where there is evidence to move against the Duke and Vanthampur Villa. In exchange for security information on the Low Lantern and Vanthampur Villa, he offers her second helpings after the two locations are subdued and his Fisters have evacuated. She can torch the places to cover their tracks if she wants.

Persuasion: 1d20 + 5 ⇒ (14) + 5 = 19

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

At the Three Old Kegs

In his respectable new threads, Mal heads to the Upper City for more information. He enjoys a meal until he can privately speak to Alstan.
After showing him his Fist badge that the halfling keeps hidden, he tells him that Zodge sent him and that his brandy's hot enough to melt a candle.

He asks for security information about Vanthampur Villa. A squad of Flaming Fist needs to get in there as easily as possible.

Persuasion: 1d20 + 5 ⇒ (7) + 5 = 12

Silver Crusade

| HP: 29/40[2]| Rage: 2/3{+2}|SnaX: 1/2 HD 3 melee: +5/2d6+3 |Init: +2 Perc: +3 | Insp = no |Human Barb3| AC: 16
Evendur "Grim" Greymantle wrote:

Your... world is strange to me Mal. But in for a copper, in for a gold as they say. I'll follow your lead. The ledgers are, as you say, going to help prove the case. That said, perhaps we could arrange or pay for a suitable distraction to draw their eyes and guards. A hungry desperate mob of refugees? We'd gave to guarantee food for them... pricy in these desperate times. But we can do both good and have our distraction.

"If it's food you need, I can supply that. I'm good for two things, neither of them very subtle. But yeah, if you can line up the mob, I can line up a mess of slop on the cheap.

I suppose I could probably lead them, too. Cat-wrangle the thronging horde and stiffen their spines. Me with a horde? Yeah, that'd take a bit to move us."

Silver Crusade

| HP: 29/40[2]| Rage: 2/3{+2}|SnaX: 1/2 HD 3 melee: +5/2d6+3 |Init: +2 Perc: +3 | Insp = no |Human Barb3| AC: 16
GM Infinity wrote:

An Uncommon Taste (Gorn)

For a few irritating moments the lonely chef wandered, increasingly prey to a series of unfortunate but ultimately harmless accidents. First stepping on a spatula and launching a salt shaker missile a few feet behind himself. Next the cheese he was eating mysteriously disappeared, to be replaced with a trail of morsels leading to nowhere. Then there was the thunderous, booming flatulence that he prayed didn't come from the rothe. All accompanied by a chorus of chittering snickers from the shadows.

The letter had promised an experienced kitchen team at his command, but they were certainly no where in sight.

Mercifully a raven alighted upon a pan handle, squawking a quick avian greeting (was there a rookery in here?) but also speaking in a language Gorn understood (what was in that cheese?) "Hey there, you look lost? Hungry? Shouldn't we get started? The others are getting kinda bored." tilting its head inquisitively. "Ah right, you probably can't see them. But don't worry, we can hear you and work better this way. Come on, get dressed and tell us what you need. We can't disappoint Master." before flying off to the eastern wall, where a tall lazy-suzan spun round to reveal a toque blance, double-breasted white jacket, and of course an apron (sporting a rather tacky "I ❤️️ Crabs" logo).

Gorn stares non-plussed at the suddenly talkative raven. "This is...not usual. If it's gonna be like this, then I should like to see half my payment set before me to make sure I'm not made sport of with this talk of 'invisible waitstaff that are, like, totally a thing, honest'."

It had been his intention to wait and do nothing until more clarification was made. But he was never one to be given to inaction, and after only a few minutes his curiosity becomes unbearable.

"Well then get some water boiling!" he calls out, mostly to see if anything actually happens, and because hot water is needed for anything worthwhile.

"And someone go kill that giant crab-man-thing and start bringing me its meat. It looked tasty but I'm not going to waste my time harvesting it," he says, wandering over and putting on the apron.

As it proves out that his words are the spark for action for the invisible servants that flit about, he becomes more comfortable barking about the constant orders that are needed in feeding a lot of people a lot of meals.

He challenges himself to not do any cooking himself. At least, he wants to see how reliable all these helpers are. He assumes that yelling at them will make them work better. It seems to be all the rage.


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AC18(20) |HP 38/[40]| Str+3 Int+1 Wis+6 Dex+0 Con+2 Cha+2|Init + 0|Percept +6|Insight +6|Invest +4| War Priest Attacks 0/[3] Inspiration [Y] Channel Divinity 1/[1] HD 2/[5] Male Human Doomguide Acolyte of Kelemvor Cleric (War)/5
Gorn Steelbreaker wrote:
Me with a horde? Yeah, that'd take a bit to move us."[/b]

I may well pay money to see that :D


AvernusArt 2Grid

Foraging for a Friend (Donal)

The woman looks so relieved her eyes glisten with tears "...we were hopeful to reach the Shrine of Suffering in Heapside, we were told the priests there were friendly to followers of Torm..." It seemed reasonable, after all Torm was said to lead the Triad, an alliance with the deities Bahamut and Ilmater...an analogous, positive reflection of the Dead Three. Surely one of Torm's would be welcome at Ilmater's Shrine.

Then again, this was Baldur's Gate...a dystopian cesspool. More likely the religion was simply a tool for control. If people unquestioningly believe that suffering makes them worthy, that pain has nobility to it, they are less likely to demand safe working conditions, higher pay, or more rights. Such beliefs are great for growing the coffers of those in power.

This woman had nowhere to turn though, except her hope.

Thus when Donal handed her the bundles it suddenly filled her life with greater purpose than just the survival of herself and her children. "I...I'll find a way, sire." she promised. "They say they'll let us out of the encampment after full processing...but it never ends! They're hunting our paladins...I just don't understand it." shaking her head.


AvernusArt 2Grid

Under New Management (Grim/Donal)

Donal wrote:
Religion: 1d20 + 2 ⇒ (10) + 2 = 12
Grim wrote:
Religion: 1d20 + 5 ⇒ (12) + 5 = 17

There before the altar of Bane, the cleansers of the deep once again chanted their way into the properly aligned phase-space, knowing well the challenges ahead. Bane's portfolio rejected subservience to anyone, mortal or immortal...and He would not so easily give up his stranglehold on power.

Raylen was immediately harried by a snake-like creature which leapt forth from the border of interplanar space in a burst of colors, snarling and grinning. The snake had the face of a man and teeth of a wolf, with a scorpion's stinger on its thrashing tail. "อำนาจขอ งคุณนั้น ไร้ความห มาย?...คุกเข่าข อคำตัดสิน." it thundered in some ancient, exotic verse.

Raylen: 1d20 + 4 ⇒ (20) + 4 = 24 Bah, figures I waste a nat 20 on a friendly npc ;P

Raylen didn't feel like talking.

The slaughter was swift, his bastard sword penetrating the creature's chest to the hilt...the old priest proceeded in a downward motion, unzipping the flesh like his wife's party dress. He was rewarded with a shower of intestines and bubbly blue-liquid which turned to vapor on striking the ritual circle.

Donal, perhaps distracted by the sudden but quickly dispatched threat, mispronounced one of the binding syllables. It was a subtle mistake, but enough to ensure Kelemvor's Aspect would not reach the stone. Grim hadn't noticed his companion's error in craft, but could sense something was off, and was inspired to bolster the proceedings with the waters containing the liquid blessing of Kelemvor. It was said in the divine realm, such waters formed an infinite ocean, from which grew Mount Celestia, the throne of all good. Perhaps here its powers of positive creation could give rise to something else...

As it stands Bane's influence on the altar was successfully negated (DC 10 met by all), rendering it an inert stone. Donal can use Grim's advantage from the holy water and if beats 15, it will convert the altar as before.


AvernusArt 2Grid

Hard-chiseled Features (Grim)

Lugging the rigid plate statue behind him, the Doomguide's excursion through the heart of Flaming Fist territory known as Seatower was at times hard to stomach. Despite it being mid-morning, the mercenaries (fresh from payday, apparently) caroused and brawled through the streets, jumping taverns as if it were their firstborn daughter's wedding or the second coming of Saint Dionysus. Despite the chaos, his badge marked him as brother and so while perhaps tempted by the festivities, he passed through relatively unmolested.

Flanking the large runway up to the Seatower proper (a great fortress mounting a small island farther out in the bay) Grim found many smiths displaying overt symbols of Gond, some emblazoned directly on their smoking hot anvils. After all, Baldur's Gate was the center for the god of invention's religion. His High House of Wonders in Upper City contained the fruits of 'holy labor', said to hold a number of unique full-sized vessels, siege weapons, and other miracles of artifice.

Of course, what the smiths displayed on their signage might not match the symbols worn round their necks. Grim sensed most were truly aligned with Waukeen, the goddess of trade. Such merchants had the annoying habit of taking the initiative on green customers like Grim, swarming him with a barrage of advertised expertise. He gave such coin-worshippers a wide berth in his pursuit of quality...and finally settled on a pair of earth Genasi whose displayed arms and metal-craft spoke for themselves.

The handless statue was hoisted onto the work counter like a stiff dead body.

Claiming to hail from Airspur, their Chessentan accent was unsurprising, carrying the hard consanants of Untheric mixed with the flowery vowels of a desert breeze. Inspecting the welds "...shame...who fuses tassets with cuisse? *sniff sniff sniff* Oof, where you get 'dis, bottom of latrine?" the aromas of sewage apparently not fully aired.

Grim desperately tried to maintain etiquette, as they seemed rather turned off from the idea of working with such a piece...Rolled 9

Percent Base: 1d4 ⇒ 4x5=20 percent => 0.2*1500=300

...but struggled with the cultural gap. And so it was the quote was rather on the high side of what Grim had expected: a full 300 gold. They do explain however that the rush job is possible, since it is basically just chiseling apart the welds and replacing the leathers. It might not be pretty, but it would function as plate armor.

They can finish by the end of this downtime. It will look a bit ragged where the welds were cut but not sanded/smoothed yet have normal stats for plate.


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AvernusArt 2Grid

Friends in Low Places (Mal)

The ghost of the Elfsong tavern bleated its song annoyingly as Mal the predator patiently awaited his mark. Tarina's regular gaming circle was still upstairs covering an eclectic mix of topics ranging from rat-catching, to ship design, to astrology, medicine and burglary. Mal gets the sense that, all things considered, this is a group of complete dimwits.

Tarina, the pirate turned street-runner with a heart of solid ice, sure enough turned up after a time, her smirk turning to a frown upon noticing the halfling. "Nightcloak...I've only one question. You here for the Fist or here for your mistress? I told you we were square, halfling, now you're again stirrin' the pot."

But Mal was used to razor edged thugs like her. In truth, and after he got her alone, it was almost pathetic how easily he could twist, turn and ply the woman's mindset with a simple sequence of reason laced with flattery. The final cherry on top was the promise of loot, and Mal noticed the hard-line of the woman's brow softened in introspection. Greed was a powerful ally.

"...Low Lantern is simple enough to crack. I'd need Guild support for the Villa...which I'm unlikely to get. Certain prior arrangements exist between us and the Vanthampur, you understand...an agreeable politician as high as a Duke is a rare gem. But I'll send out some feelers, perhaps with Ravenguard missing the tide is changing. Give me a few days."

---------

Later that tenday some strange correspondence reaches the bookshop, a history of pirates suspiciously entitled 'ARrrR You Ready to Read about Life at Sea?' authored by one Antiar the Crooked. Besides recognizing 'antiar' as a poisonous tree sap used in certain lethal concoctions, you also realize its an obvious anagram of 'Tarina'. Following the clues (standard cant symbolism) leads you to submerge page 69 in lemon juice...and thus reveal an annotated map of the Low Lantern.

Will post in the tracker above underneath the city map shortly.

Edit: Just kidding, much too unreadable at that scale. Uploaded full image instead to here

Silver Crusade

| HP: 29/40[2]| Rage: 2/3{+2}|SnaX: 1/2 HD 3 melee: +5/2d6+3 |Init: +2 Perc: +3 | Insp = no |Human Barb3| AC: 16

Sorry, I seem to have forgotten the rolls.

Chefs!: 1d20 + 3 ⇒ (4) + 3 = 7
Inspiration
Chefs!: 1d20 + 3 ⇒ (11) + 3 = 14

Chefs!: 1d20 + 3 ⇒ (12) + 3 = 15

Chefs!: 1d20 + 3 ⇒ (20) + 3 = 23


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AvernusArt 2Grid

High-class Kegger (Mal)

Mal reluctantly paid the 2 copper toll and crossed the feudal line of serf to lord. The Upper City was home to hundreds of patriar families who daily engaged in meetings, negotiations, backstabbing, and vigilantism...families who preferred such activities amid a backdrop of beauty and splendor. Public sculptures stood alongside historic manors, upscale theaters and boutiques, and the inquisitive could find stone-walled herb gardens tucked away like hidden emeralds.

Gone was the fishy stench of the bay, replaced with fresh blooming flowers lining the streets under pink blossoming trees. Muddy beggars and weathered potato peelers were instead transformed into merchants adorned in silk and velvet, and skipping maidens of gold braids and mink. Mal knew even from a distance the water-clear diamonds and luminous pearls adorning the aristocracy here were no cheap imitations.

The streets were swept spotlessly clean, and even sported curious magics of permanent lighting. A few even featured some kind of wind barrier against the Chionthar fog, keeping the treacherous mists forever at bay. The workshops, wineries, and jewelers making the Upper City their home were the best Mal had ever seen.

The Watch was easy to spot a mile away...with their flowing blue capes and ornate plate, the sigil adorned shields were almost redundant. Supposedly there were 1000 of the so-called bodyguards up here, with 300 on tight, active patrols at any given time.

Mal put their careful monitoring to the test, attempting to go relatively unnoticed...but their diligence was clear. The halfling was stopped numerous times on the way to the tavern, reminded again and again non-residents would be forcefully vacated at sundown. He would have to secure a letter of invitation from someone in order to spend the night...or find a friend willing to hide him.

Astlan seemed a good candidate. He ran the place with his 2 best mates, all three of them covered in warts and somewhere in their fifties...the others lovingly called them the 'Three Old Toads'. Friendly to the Fist, just as Zodge put it. A few retired Fist found residence upstairs while the cooks and servers here were actually Fist widows and orphans. They were even currently hosting a fundraiser for some poor sap crippled in service. Mal thought the owners' good character was a weakness, suckers for a sob story were always an easy con.

Mal wrote:
his brandy's hot enough to melt a candle

That brought a smile to Astlan's face and he grunted "...only way to take a toddy. C'mon, I'll show you how its done."

The man leads you to quiet spot in the scullery and proceeds to slice an apple as Mal explains the game "So he thinks the old harlot is spoorin' for him, eh? Haha, always was an ambitious c#&$. Well friend o'Zodge is a friend o'mine...but not much this codger can do for ya, my sword swingin' days are long gone." he dumps the apples into a snifter and starts cracking apart some cinnamon sticks. "Balcony 'ere's got a good view of the Villa though, if you want to surveil...that's probably what he was thinking." Hot water is added to the apples and cinnamon. "You know that reminds me...she just got a new servant, one o'Borko's spawn by the name of Ambra...cute lass. They say the old servant got thrown down some stairs for breakin' a vase or some such. Yeah, I'd imagine with a b%&$$ like that turnovers pretty high." He tops off the drink with brandy, passing it to you. "Hot toddy."

If you want to pretend to drink on the balcony you could roll perception or investigation, or do something else. Clearly visible without rolls are the 3 gated entrances on the otherwise featureless 12 ft walls forming a rough square, 1 on the north and 2 on the south. The north side also has a stables built into the walls with both windows and a chimney. Much of the second floor and tower are also visible. The former of which sports a balcony on the south side, but all around the windows seem accessible from the overhanging roofs on the first floor. The tower reaches another 20 ft above the second floor roof, which has a few small but windowless portals presumably for venting.


Halfling Dragonslayer | HP: 33/34 | 0/1d8 & 0d6 | Disguise 1/1 | Camo 2/3 | Recover 0/3 | Fast Rit 1/1 |1st 3/4 | 2nd 1/3 | Inspiration!
Stats:
AC 15 | Str -1 Dex +6 Con +2 Int +7 Wis +1 Cha -1 | Init +3 | Perc +7, Darkvision 120 ft | Insight +1

High-class Kegger

Mal enjoys the brandy and spends a day on the balcony inventorying everyone entering or exiting the Villa. He tries to recruit Astlan, his friends, and his loyal employees to continue the survey when Mal has to sleep or use the facilities. Then, he tries to maintain it while he leaves to recruit some of his crew for a shift or three.

Persuasion (recruit stakeout): 1d20 + 5 ⇒ (19) + 5 = 24

How much gold for the stakeout by committee? I'm looking for deliveries, messengers, servants and guards who don't live at the Villa, etc.

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