Sorry about the hold up guys, Monday turned out to be much busier than I expected. A 14 month old will do that to ya heh.
All three glance at each other before shaking their heads, with Jaheira speaking up.
I am afraid none of us can speak that tongue, though I am certain you could find someone here who could. Their are no shortage of people lodged here, and perhaps a scholar or wizard has arrived. It could not hurt to inquire, though I would advise caution, or allow us to ask for you. From your tale, I do not believe it would be safe to expose any of you more than is strictly necessary.
With much effort, Jaheira takes control of herself, wiping tears away as she does. Garek remains silent, though his face is contorted in anger, and wrath dances in his eyes.
Jaheira turns to you.
At a nod from Jaheira, the Innkeeper sheathes his sword. He takes the letter and scans through it, his serious demeanor soon replaced by one of grief. He silently turns and passes the letter to the others. As he does so, you cannot help but notice a passing resemblance to Garion you had not noticed before.
Jaheira takes a step forward, anger and grief shrouding her beautiful features. With a cry of rage she slams her scimitar into a chair, leaving the blade lodged in the wood as she struggles to calm herself. Khalid stays calm, though pain is evident in his gentle eyes. He moves over and places an arm around Jaheira.
Please...forgive us the way we approached you, but our dear friend Gorion warned us to be wary. The wise old man knew some darkness was stirring, but forbid us from following. Damnit Gorion, why would you not accept our aid? Alas...all the Gods watch over you, my oldest friend...you were the best of us.
He turns to you.
The Innkeeper nods in agreement, and accepts a Gold each per night for the rooms. Beyond the Merchant you aided outside becoming more and more despondent as his coffers are emptied by the Red Robed Man, and the continued glances from the Massive Armored Half-Orc, nothing else of note happens.
At the agreed upon time, you all gather in the rooms Rasp has procured for you. The Keep houses four towers, and each tower has been turned into housing, with numerous rooms both spacious and cramped. You all have been given a spacious common room, with small bedchambers leading off of it, high in the Western Tower. It is comfortably furnished, though not flamboyant, with the basic necessities you would need.
A knock comes upon the door, followed by three figures entering the room. The first is a tall, lean but well built Half-Elven woman, with tanned dusky skin and almond eyes. Her hair is long and loose, and her clothing simple but functional. She wears leather armor, and carries a scimitar and shield. What few ornaments she carries all take the form of tokens to nature, such as a silver oak leaf clasp for her cloak.
The second figure is a man, tall and muscled, with a thick black beard and mustache adorning a sharply narrow face. He constantly glances about, seemingly nervous, and never strays far from the woman's side. He carries himself proudly despite the nervousness, and his skin tone and features, as well as the manner of his clothing, would seem to mark him as a man from Amn, or perhaps even further south. He wears scale mail, and bears a sword and shield.
The last figure too is a man, a familiar one at that. The Innkeeper steps inside, his imposing physique now wrapped in fine Plate Mail, and a large Greatsword unsheathed and at the ready. Where before his handsome features where pleasant and welcoming, now his bears a determined, even harsh manner, and stares at each of you with violence in his eyes. As he steps in, he blocks the doorway out and locks it behind him, facing each of you in turn.
Jaheira, Khalid, these are the ones that have been looking for you. It seemed prudent to gather them all in one place...
He turns to you.
All three stand there expectantly, waiting to hear your tale.
Rasp, you walk up to a morbidly obese, greasy looking fellow, with unkempt clothing and pudgy fingers glistening with jewelry. He sizes you up for a moment, scowling, before seeming to relax.
Aye lad, honest work harvesting the wheat, if you hear me straight. Look for Jasper, near the temple, he will show ya whats what.
Sorry about the delay everyone, computer was down for a day. Anyone else going to do anything? So far you have not gotten rooms, nor have you inquired about Jaheira and Khalid, the two people you are supposable here to meet.
Frowning at Qorin's flippant gesture, the Half-Orc returns it with a rude gesture common amongst their kind, before returning to his drink. However, he can still be seen occasionally glancing in your direction, studying you intently.
Rasp, you did not notice any marks, but you did however notice the tell tale signs of Thieves Cant amongst some of the locals.
Tessa orders a round of drinks, and soon enough a barmaid walks, dropping off ale for everyone but Ridel, to whom she presents a glass of wine. Bread and Cheese are also placed before you at Qorin's request, with a hearty stew soon joining them.
The Red Robed Man can be seen sitting near the center of the room, playing some sort of dice gambling game alongside the Merchant that accused him previously. The Merchant seems to have accepted the mans innocence, though his crestfallen look would seem to indicate the Red Robed Man is winning soundly at the dice game. The foul tempered Halfling Montaron sits to the side, nursing a whiskey and shooting angry glances at all who come near.
What do you do?
The Flaming Fist Guard steps aside, allowing you to walk across the bridge and into the massive courtyard of The Friendly Arm Inn. The bustle of commerce surrounds you as merchants come and go, checking in and out of the large stables housing numerous mounts. For those of you who have never stepped outside your isolated homes, it is an eclectic group, with vibrantly garbed travelers from Amn walking alongside the hardy folk of The Sword Coast. Armored Flaming Fist Mercenaries patrol the battlements, keeping a keen eye out for any wrongdoings. As you walk on, the smell of an homey breakfast assaults your senses, and each of you cannot help but feel at home.
Continuing towards the Keep which houses the Inn itself, you pass by a Guard House, Barracks, Blacksmith, and a modest sized Temple to Lathander the Morninglord. A stout looking Dwarf dressed in the apparel of the Temple can be seen outside, preaching the word of Lathander to the passing crowds. Taking the massive steps leading into the Keep, you emerge into the Friendly Arm Inn proper.
Warm baked bread, battered in honey and butter...soft cheeses and crisp ripe apples...fresh cider and tender sausages...all these scents and more greet your entry, wafting around you and filling your noses. Though early, the place is bustling with activity, as barmaids glide gracefully around the room, taking and delivering orders whilst fending off the half hearted advances of laughing men. A bard plays an uplifting melody in the corner, and everywhere the sounds of laughter and revelry can be heard.
But, despite it all, you cannot help but feel a shadow of tension darkening the revelry. Despite the joy, you can hear whispered mutterings, and overhear snatches of conversation concerning the recent rise in Bandit activity and Iron shortage. The large mountain of a man sporting a groomed beard that stands behind the main bar seems to feel it too, as he watches the Inn with a steely gaze, clearly expecting or prepared for trouble.
Everyone, make a Wisdom Perception Roll and then decide what you are doing.
DC 15 Wisdom Perception:
A massive, well built Half-Orc sits by himself in the corner, clearly daring anyone to attempt to crowd in on him. He stands out, not only from his warrior physique, but also by the gleaming suit of Full Plate he wears, and the giant blade he carries at his side. A serrated blade sits upon a crosspiece styled to appear as a Dragon in flight, wings spread and talons grasping a faintly flowing onxy. As you walk in, he looks in your direction before staring intently, clearly taking your measure...
1d20 ⇒ 16
Despite being taken aback by the threat in Qorins voice, the Halfling keeps his composure andfinishes dumping out the coin. The Merchant walks over and counts, a frown and resigned expression upon his face.
Gentleman...im afraid I must apologize. These amounts do not match up at all! Id like that drink, if the offer is still there...
The Red Robed Man grins widely, and lets out a shrillish laugh.
Of course it is friend! Come Montaron...I believe we have waited long enough.
The Halfling shoots one last murderous look at Qorin before they all begin to walk away...
The Halfing scowls at the challenge in Qorin's tone, and stares up at him.
I got no objections, greeny, but I reckon ya got no business sticking ya nose where it don belong. Keep that up, might wake up to a blade in the back one night ya Half-Blooded Mongrel!
The situation quickly growing tense, the Red Robed Man steps forward, placing a calming hand upon the Halfing's shoulder.
Easy now Montaron! Whilst I admit, I am not over fond of being accused of larceny and other such ill doings, the Half-Orc brings up a fair and valid point. All of this can be settled quite easily. Master Merchant, if you would, please give us the count of your coin as Montaron here lays it out.
Not quite sure what to make of Qorin's unexpected help, but grateful but for someone backing him nonetheless, the Merchant speaks up, confidence returning to his voice.
I do believe it should be 58 Gold, 39 Silver, and 11 Copper. I normally carry more, but the rest is invested in Trade Goods at the moment I must admit.
Muttering curses under his breath, the irate Halfling dumps the money into the dirt, quickly counting it out.
Everyone Roll me a Perception Wisdom Check.
And so you press forward, leaving the mystery of the Priest of Bhaal behind you as you venture once more into the wild. However, Uruk knows the trail well, and only two days pass before the lights of the Friendly Arm Inn can be seen upon the horizon.
Traveling North along the Great Coast Way Road, you soon find yourself traveling towards a Keep stationed along the road. Banners of all sorts adorn the walls, and armored men patrol the battlements, keeping a keen eye out upon the surrounding land. Merchants and travelers of all sorts can be seen bustling around, and a well guarded drawbridge leads further inside. You can see the Guard now, and for those who have ventured outside the walls of Candlekeep and are familiar with these lands, you can recognize these men as members of The Flaming Fist. They appear to be stopping all who attempt to enter, though they only seem to question each, and do not stop them from venturing inside.
As you walk up, the group in front of you begins to mutter in irritation, as ahead of you a hold up situated at the bridge appears. A wildly tattooed, thin weasel faced human stands before you, dresses in robes of rich crimson, with staff in head. A small but powerfully built Halfling stands beside him, one had resting casually upon his shortsword, the other clutching a money pouch tightly to him. It soon becomes obvious why the Guard has stopped this pair, as another man, a merchant from the looks of him, shouts out angrily!
I say, arrest then vagrants! Charlatans and tricksters they are, and this small one here has a talent for larceny! He stole my coin pouch! Arrest them immediately sir!
The Halfling turns, fetching the Merchant a withering glare.
Oye you, best be watching me tone friend. Call me small once more, and ill adjust your size to suit me own!
The Merchant seems to pale noticeably at this threat, but does not back down. The thin red robed man steps forward, arms spread wide in a friendly gesture.
Come now friends, is this anyway to treat fellow travelers? My good sirs, myself and my compatriot have committed no wrongs this day, unless you count a few farmers daughters with a little less virtue than their fathers credit them for! Haha, indeed I do not deny we are quite the rascals, but I promise you, this man has it all wrong. Friend, let us take you inside and buy you a drink, and talk this whole thing through!
The Merchant seems to not be swayed, and the line of people attempting to enter the walled safety of the Friendly Arm Inn comes to a stop as the argument continues, with the merchant quickly turning red in the face with anger.
Rasp, this is not a dead end, though a few minutes of searching reveals this to be a central hub of sorts. All other tunnels simply lead to either more Goblin resting places, or out into the ravine you climbed down to get in here. Nothing else of note is found.
Ridel, you cannot read the script upon the note, though your training in esoteric matters leads you to believe it may be Abyssal, the language of the Abyss and those foul creatures such as Demons that dwell within. The only thing you can make out for certain is a peculiar rune where you imagine the author of the letter would have signed his name. Beyond that, you cannot fathom any more of it at this time. Perhaps a sage or such could reveal more?
Ridel, you do not discover any magic upon any of the items. They simply appear to be well made, and even more shocking, crafted of fine steel, a rarity in these trying times.
Uruk, you jam Kemek's decapitated head upon his staff, where it seems to rest quite snugly. A faint golden light begins to emanate from Kemek's eyes, nose, mouth, and neck.
Kemek, you are able to turn the light off or on at will, and when on it seems to have the same radius as a burning torch.
What do the rest of you do? And Rasp, Ridel, what else do you do?
Rasp, you find some decent foodstuffs, such as a human might enjoy, as well as some tomes and papers written in a strange language. Upon the man, you find a Mace and Steel Shield, both of good craftsmanship. His clothing is simple, though the Breastplate he wears looks to have seen combat. Around his neck hangs an obsidian holy symbol, bearing the skull and blood drop symbol of Bhaal.
Other than the tomes and papers, the only other thing of value is scattered coinage amountingto 147 gold and 38 silver.
Gritting her teeth, Tessa moves down the incline, and spots the Robed Man further in, obviously attempting to flee down another tunnel with sunlight streaming in. Drawing and throwing in one smooth motion, she catches the man in the back of the knee, dropping him and drawing a startled curse from his lips!
Charging forward, Qorin stands over the man, starting grimly down as he looks up at you.
None of this matters!!! You don't matter!!! He will find you, and take what he wants!!! Your soul is---!!!
His speech is cut suddenly off and Qorin brings his massive maul straight down upon the man, crushing him in a fountain of blood and ruptured organs.
The Goblins look up at Rasp, look at each other, then begin fleeing in different directions as quickly as they can!
The area at the bottom of the incline appears to be a rough living quarters for the man, as it appears more civilized than what one would expect from a Goblin. A desk and bed are the only nods to ornamentation, and filthy straw in one corner obviously show where the Goblins used to bed down.
What do you do? Combat is Over, and everyone please take level 2!
Uruk and Ridel both move for cover, Uruk grabbing up Kemek as he does so!
Glancing behind them and seeing the Robed Human fleeing, both Goblins promptly throw aside their bows, fall to their knees, and begin to display an uncanny aptitude at groveling and begging for their pitiful lives.
Tessa, Rasp, Qorin, your up!
still in Initiative only for purposes of dealing with the Robed Human.
Roaring in rage, Qorin smashes the Glowing Goblin into a meaty pulp!
Tessa rushes between Ridel and his Hobgoblin adversary, and with a quick feint plunges both blades into the foul creatures throat! It chokes on its own blood and quickly dies.
Uruk and Ridel, Go Go GO!
Kemek, your staff is directly next to you, still clutched in the cold hands of your body.
My apologies, Uruk places an arrow!
Of the 4 Goblins left, the one in Melee attempts to take down Qorin, but themighty warrior easily wards him off! One of the archers charges in buy Rasp deftly ducks under its crude swings! The last two Goblins continue firing with their shortbows, but both shots go wild.
And finally, the Hobgoblin rushed Ridel, who was able to just barely beat back its assault...for now.
We have 4 Goblins, two of which are in Melee with one glowing. Un harmed.
Hobgoblin engaged with Ridel. Winded
Human behind the Archers. Unharmes.
6 threats total.
Tessa, Rasp, Qorin, your up!
Tessa's blades work a deadly duet, and one of the Goblin's engaged in the melee falls, Tessa's rapier skewering the pathetic creatures heart with one clean thrust!
As that Goblin falls, a man walks into view, behind the line of Goblin Archers at the bottom of the tunnel. He is tall for a human, but lean of frame, with a long face and fading widow peak. He is adorned in black robes, with a breastplate strapped on. He bears a mace and shield. His every glance seems infused with malice and hatred, and he sneers mockingly in your direction as he stands behind the Goblins.
How convenient...rather than track you down myself, you come running, willingly throwing yourself upon my blades. Its a shame a fool like Gorion could not teach you any sense, but alas, I shall not squander the opportunity. Take the disfigured Human and the Half-Orc alive! Slay the others!
With that being said, he begins a dark incantation, and touches one of the Goblin Archers beside him. The Goblin begins to emit a deep crimson glow, and glares directly at Qorin, blood leaking from its eyes.
Ridel places an arrow squarely between the eyes of the other Goblin involved in the Melee, leaving the front line clear!
Will post Goblins Turn in a bit.
Ridel's incantation causes one of the Goblin's in the Melee to screech as his body is turned to ice, only for Uruk's arrow to moments later shatter it into pristine shards of iced Goblin.
The Burnt and Battered Hobgoblin leading what is left of the force climbing the ravine reaches the ledge. With a bestial cry of rage he rushes forward, straight at Kemek! Charging the stunned Gondsman, the Hobgoblin draws two handaxes and reaps a deadly harvest! One swing of an axe takes the Gondsman's right leg off, and the other axe takes an arm! As Kemek falls to the ground. the Hobgoblin drops one of his axes, grabs Kemek's head and with a roar of rage rips it off! Laughing at the Gondsmen's obvious agony, he throws the head, bouncing it off of Rasp as he does!
The other Goblin that reaches the ledge, seeing Ridel there, rushes him!
Goblins 1,engaged in the Melee, again swings at Qorin, as he has presented the biggest threats so far!
Goblin Damage on Qorin: 1d6 - 1 ⇒ (2) - 1 = 1
Goblin 1, swinging at Qorin, forces him to hastily deflect its weapon to the side!
Goblins 3, 4, and 5 pull back their small bows and launch a volley of arrows towards the melee!
3d20 ⇒ (15, 12, 14) = 41
Goblin Bow Damage on Qorin: 1d6 ⇒ 5
Both Qorin and Tessa suffer nasty wounds as the Goblins volley strikes true and arrows plunge into the Hero's flesh!
I did and responded. Just to throw it out there, and by no means does this indicate I am not pleased with the system or going to end the game, but I would be willing to switch this to Pathfinder if most players want to. Again, I like DnD Next, and enjoy the rule system, but I understand if you all would prefer Pathfinder. So, it is entirely player choice.
This decision will impact whether we do what you suggested, or another course of action.
6d20 ⇒ (20, 4, 9, 12, 8, 1) = 54
2d8 ⇒ (3, 2) = 5
4 of the Goblins climbing up the ravine towards you feel the full impact of Kemek's incantation and are thrown off the ravine wall, their bodies splattering and breaking as they fall screaming to their deaths. 1 Goblin and his Hobgoblin leader grunt in pain but continue their accent.
Their is no sound from the Human this time around, simply a tense silence broken by screeching Goblin voices!
Rasp, Qorin, and Tessa all enter the melee, but unfortunately, the press of Goblin bodies and tight quarters lead their blows astray.
Ridel and Uruk, you are up. Ridel, if you are still on the rope, no Goblin's are currently in range. If you moved to the ledge, you would be 25 feet from the closest one climbing up, as they are 25 feet down. The closest targets would be the goblins about 15 feet into the cave system engaged in the Melee with Rasp, Qorin, and Tessa.
Loud scratchy voices erupt in battlecries, and with much flapping of feet and gnashing of teeth Goblins come rushing up the 5 ft wide tunnel! The first Goblin to scramble up the tunnel falls back, Rasp's arrow quivering in its eye! The next Goblin tosses it's dead fellows body to the side, brandishing his short sword as he scrabbles up the incline and rushes Qorin! At the last moment however, Qorin's great maul swings then, crushing the Goblin's skull like a ripe melon, spraying brain matter, blood, and shards of bone everywhere!
Five more Goblins rush into view, with two rushing up the incline to engage Rasp and Qorin in Melee, the others standing back and shooting bows into the fray!
Goblin Swing!: 1d20 + 1 ⇒ (8) + 1 = 9
Both Goblin's trap over themselves scrambling up the sharp incline, and fail to make contact with either Rasp or Qorin! Giggling in glee, the remaining three Goblins at the bottom of the incline cackle and fire their bows!
Goblin Shoot!: 1d20 + 1 ⇒ (1) + 1 = 2
But the constricting quarters and bottleneck at the top of the ramp makes all their arrows fly wide!
Wisdom Perception Rolls everyone.
You hear more shrieking Goblin voices coming from outside! Anyone who moves to see will find 5 more Goblins climbing up the ravine towards the cave you are in, led by a Hobgoblin with nasty black burn marks upon his face and exposed arms!
Tessa: 1d20 + 4 ⇒ (3) + 4 = 7