Painter Worshipper of Shelyn

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Chapter One: Edge of Anarchy

Korvosa, the Jewel of Varisia, has long sparkled on Varisia’s southern shore. Established 300 years ago by Cheliax at the height of that empire’s expansion, the city now commands its own destiny. A line of Korvosan kings and queens emerged to rule the city, establishing an infamous seat power—the Crimson Throne. Rulers have sat upon the Crimson Throne for more than a century, and the city has flourished. Yet the monarchy always seems on the brink of disaster. The Crimson Throne is not a prize to be won—it is a curse. No monarch of Korvosa has died of old age, and none have produced an heir while ruling. Even though King Eodred II controls Korvosa more fully than any previous monarch, that control remains tenuous, and many secretly count the days until their latest king falls to what they call the Curse of the Crimson Throne.

Part One: Haunted Fortunes

You've all been wronged by the local crime lord and villian Gaedren Lamm. He is a deplorable crook well past his prime, yet possessed of a tenacious ability to stay one step ahead of the Korvosan Guard while maintaining complete control of his band of young pickpockets recruited from the city’s street urchins and orphans. You've all been seeking a chance to bring him to justice. And finally that chance has arrived.

24:00 - 1 Neth 4708 AR
It is a cold and rainy autumn night.

Sebastian Merrin:

It’s late on another cold rainy night. Sebastian's hands grip the windowsill in his room above the smithy tightly until his knuckles turn white. He can’t sleep. The memories of his recently departed friend wrack him with anger and pain. As he stares into the endless gloom, a brilliant flash of lightning cleaves the darkness blinding him for the briefest of seconds. When his vision returns, a harrow card is plastered to the outside of the glass, the image of the Juggler facing inward towards him. Intrigued, he reaches under the window to retrieve the card. To further add to the mystery, a message is written on the back in bold ink.

I know what Gaedren has done to you. He has wronged me as well. I know where he dwells, yet cannot strike at him. Come to my home at 3 Lancet Street at sunset. Others like you will be there. Gaedren must face his fate, and justice must be done.

Sebastion knew this day would come.

Nadya Dimineata:

Nadya struggles with another night of nightmares. Images of a young woman addicted to shiver dying alone in an alley continue to haunt her dreams. She wakes in a cold sweat. The rain outside does nothing to improve her mood. Physically and emotionally drained, she turns to her harrow deck for solace. Beginning, like she normally would, she shuffles the deck and draws the first card, the Joke; the next card, the Joke; all the cards, the Joke. Panicked and fearing that she is still dreaming, she drops the deck. Only then does she notice on the back of the cards is a message.

I know what Gaedren has done to you. He has wronged me as well. I know where he dwells, yet cannot strike at him. Come to my home at 3 Lancet Street at sunset. Others like you will be there. Gaedren must face his fate, and justice must be done.

After reading the note, her cards return to normal, leaving Nadya wondering if any of it was real at all.

Ayako:

Ayako kneels before her mother’s grave in the Gray like she’s done countless times since her death. A heavy cloak shields her from the rain. She enjoys the unholy communion she receives when she’s alone out here, for she knows she is not alone. In the silence, she hears whispers, whether they are her mother’s or someone else’s, she’s not sure, but the sweet voice comforts her in any case. When Ayako’s prayers are complete, she stands to leave, but notices a harrow card laid face up before the grave, the image of the Theater staring back at her. How could she have missed that?, she wonders. Curious, she picks up the card and examines it. The front is unmarred, despite the weather, and the back seems to bear a message directed towards her, the black ink similarly remains unsmudged.

I know what Gaedren has done to you. He has wronged me as well. I know where he dwells, yet cannot strike at him. Come to my home at 3 Lancet Street at sunset. Others like you will be there. Gaedren must face his fate, and justice must be done.

Ayako silently thanks whoever is watching over her and heads out.

Col Avertin:

Col sits alone at a table at the Bailer’s Retreat, a rough tavern that frequently serves recently released prisoners of Citadel Volshyenek’s jails. Despite the infrequent brawls between these unsavory patrons and the Korvosan Guards, it is known to be an excellent place to overhear rumors of illicit activities. Rain has kept the tavern full late into the evening. He eavesdrops on a few conversations and is surprised to hear Gaedren’s name come up more than once. When he’s ready to leave, he signals to a serving wench to bring him his tab. He’s confused when she hands him a harrow card instead, this one, the Cricket. After a moment of staring confused at the card, he lifts a finger to question the maid, but she is nowhere to be seen. Shrugging, he turns back to the mystery before him and finds a message written to him when he flips the card.

I know what Gaedren has done to you. He has wronged me as well. I know where he dwells, yet cannot strike at him. Come to my home at 3 Lancet Street at sunset. Others like you will be there. Gaedren must face his fate, and justice must be done.

He flips the card again and he is holding the bar tab he was originally expecting. Col wonders to himself if he had one too many drinks that night, but whatever he experienced, he has a lead.


Discussion thread open.


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Korvosa, the Jewel of Varisia, has long sparkled on Varisia’s southern shore. Established 300 years ago by Cheliax at the height of that empire’s expansion, the city now commands its own destiny. A line of Korvosan kings and queens emerged to rule the city, establishing an infamous seat power—the Crimson Throne. Rulers have sat upon the Crimson Throne for more than a century, and the city has flourished. Yet the monarchy always seems on the brink of disaster. The Crimson Throne is not a prize to be won—it is a curse. No monarch of Korvosa has died of old age, and none have produced an heir while ruling. Even though King Eodred II controls Korvosa more fully than any previous monarch, that control remains tenuous, and many secretly count the days until their latest king falls to what they call the Curse of the Crimson Throne.

I’m looking to run the Curse of the Crimson Throne campaign with 4 mature players.
• Start at level 1
• 15 point buy
• 2 traits. 1 must be a campaign trait.
• Max hp at 1st level and average hp each level after that
• Average starting wealth
• Source material can be selected from the Core Rulebook, Advanced Class Guide, Advanced Players Guide, Advanced Race Guide, Ultimate Combat, Ultimate Equipment, and Ultimate Magic. Other sources will be allowed on a case-by-case basic but I prefer everyone not have any abilities that I not familiar with or don’t have the book to reference.

I just successfully finished running an in-person Curse of the Crimson Throne campaign and I want to run it again in a play-by-post format. I’ve played or ran multiple Paizo-published adventures and have found that they are written well enough that they can be as light-hearted or as dark as the DM runs it. I plan to run the adventure as a horror-themed campaign rather than a heroic campaign. The campaign will be run as printed but I will make it dark and gritty. I will get very descriptive of the depravity and danger the players will face around every corner. I’m looking for players who also interested in this concept and can role-play the desperation and fear that their characters will be experiencing. I hope to make the campaign challenging and won’t be throwing any punches. Being prepared will be necessary. But I also believe in Rule 0: Have Fun and I am an experienced enough GM to know how to make an enjoyable game for everyone involved.

I’ve role-played for the last 15 years but this will be my first play-by-post campaign run on the paizo.com website so I may need to figure out the working in the beginning but I’m currently playing in some play-by-post campaigns so I know the formatting. I’m planning on using either Google Drawings or roll20.net for the maps. I’ll see which the players I select prefer.

I’m looking for players who can post at least once a day if not more. I am EST time zone and would prefer players close to that as well. If we are running a combat, I will bot any player who doesn’t post within a day to keep things moving. You can jump back in with your next turn as soon as you are able to. I am also able to post on weekends.

If you are not familiar with the campaign, please read the Curse of the Crimson Throne Player’s Guide and tie your backstory to your campaign trait and your relation with Gaedren Lamm.

THE TIE THAT BINDS

Korvosa, like any city, has its share of undesirables. Cutpurses, thugs, thieves, burglars, assassins, and lowlifes of every sort can be found in waterfront slums, creeping in the sewers, or hiding in the tangled Shingles above. The Korvosan Guard does what it can to keep the city’s criminals from causing too much harm, but the cold reality is that they will always outnumber the law. And that means some crimes go unpunished and some criminals see great success.

Worst of these, perhaps, are the city’s crimelords. Dozens of them operate in Korvosa at any one time, from the sinister leader of the Red Mantis assassins all the way down to the Varisian Sczarni thugs who preside over a gang of a half-dozen friends and cousins. These minor crimelords are often, ironically, the ones who do the most damage to Korvosa’s law-abiding citizens, as larger organizations have little need to bother commoners. One such undesirable is Gaedren Lamm, a despicable low-life who missed his chance at being somebody big in Korvosa’s murky underworld. Well past his prime, the decrepit thief abducts orphans and forces them to support his despicable lifestyle with petty crime. Many of Korvosa’s lower class have had dealings with Lamm, and even a few of the city’s middle class and nobility have had their lives complicated by this foul old man. Yet no matter what he does, he always seems to slip away from the guards and avoid answering for his crimes.

Gaedren Lamm’s luck is about to change, though. For among those his actions have recently touched are several men and women destined to become some of Korvosa’s greatest heroes. And one of those heroes is you.

I’ll leave it open until Friday 8/21 and will pick 4 players who I think will fit best. You don’t need to make a new alias until you are picked (unless you want to). I look forward to seeing your submissions.