Uther is correct. My next entry should be fun.
I'm just waiting on Useplanb to update his official version before posting!
As for my previous post, only the middle part about finding the trapped mother and her child in the burning building and their resulting rescue were made up.
I did heal Davok at the wall at the previous game, and then I was gone for the first half of the second night of the battle, and arrived at the game just in time to see Simon get munched by the dragon. The rare smile on Rikert's face was the first thing Simon saw when he woke up in the street.
Syndrome?...HUH!?...WOW!!...What a fickle mistress this has become. Oh well, Me and my NEW FRIEND Typhoid Mary will hang out and clean up after the silver backed, knuckle draggin, mouth breathers at the home for retired, sloped fore-headed killers! And as always...may you all pass fish bones while performing the flaming sword dance of the colon, and may your roller skates always lead you to the top of the stairs!!
Curtsy...Smile...(CENSORED GESTURE!) ;)
Oh, Moxie! We other GMs are just VERY jealous that Useplanb has you! We will steal you yet!
And if you *really* want to see "Moxie Syndrome" at work, you should explore my alter-ego Leilani's journal -- She's 7 LONG posts in and I don't think there's a spoiler in the thread yet, because she's still posting about stuff that never happened at a game table. And I blame you entirely, Moxie! You inspire me!
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(LOL!) Oh but I am amused, more than you know! I simply must protest as a formality. A Ladies honor is at stake after all! You see, while I may, on ocassion...expound...I use self deprecating humor, slap stick, back story, or a roll of 34 on perform to follow and fill in my absence. But then again I am no shiny hero...(giggle!)...more of an affliction! Whats my DC!?! LOL!!
Oh, I know. You drowning those goblins without nary a word or second thought was proof positive of that. (And amusing to me, as I've a player in my "Skyrim" (Reign of Winter) campaign who's a goblin who thinks he's a gnome, was raised by one, and may have in a previous life been one, who rides around in a human-sized suit of full plate.)
I will admit some curiosity as to just how much roleplaying goes on in Useplanb's campaign, even if it's not quite the avalanche of awesome Moxie and Rikert have been making it seem like.
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Useplanb, you're up!
In my RotRL campaign, I'd say it's 90% RP, 10% combat. We easily spend 8-hour sessions with the party interacting with NPCs and traveling, and no combat. But it's a hand-picked group of 3 players.
Gothbard's Second Darkness campaign is closer to a 50/50 mix, but that's 9 players, similar to Useplanb's group. But Vorne, Gothbard, and I are on IM together all day, every day, so if you count the Vorne/Leilani (and now Samaritha) interactions, it skews heavily over to 80/20 or so. Just play a female CHA-based character and have the roguish wizard romance you... adds to the roleplay immensely, though two other (male) roleplayers expressed horror at the very thought. (Amused us no end...)
What I find amusing is that the girl I recruited into my game last year decided her character was going to be lesbian and immediately attached herself to the sacrificial female NPC who initially was going to be kidnapped to give the players incentive to enter into the campaign. I didn't have the heart to do it (and then switched from Night Below to Reign of Winter anyway so it became a moot point). And I had no real idea how to roleplay the girl (ended up after her background was more fleshed out that she'd been abused by family and nearly raped by a merchant's son who she then nearly killed when her Sorcery skills appeared - which explains why she hates her sorcery and focuses all her skills in Druidism). So you have a male GM trying to roleplay a girl who's finding herself attracted to another woman played by a female player he's attracted to. And not doing the greatest job of it! ^^;;
Funny thing is, I've roleplayed female NPCs before who end up being the "interest" of a male PC. Those gave me no problem at all. Then again, those relationships grew more gradually so it probably allowed me to build the personality as I went.
And yes, Useplanb, we're waiting... :D
No time to gloat over the dragon, giants are in the town. I moved toward Zandu and Davok about a block away at what was the city hall building. Being prudent, I vanished on my approach to battle and came up on one that Davok had turned into a pin cushion. I killed it with an attack and in the meantime, Davok took out another. Then it was on to the brewery.
Still able to walk on air, thanks to Zandu I headed straight there as the crow flies, moving as fast as I could. It took a little bit, but several of us got there in time to take out the remaining giants in town. Annie took one out with a hex, making it sleep. Hathom hit one with fire and I attacked another. It only took a few seconds of combat before the giants were dead or disabled and then we turned our attention to some seemingly far away giants at the Scarnetti mansion.
We were able to see smoke from the area. I gave Davok the ability to fly and we both headed the same direction as the crow flies. He got ahead of me and noticed four giants heading down the roadway and going into the woods. We gave chase as well. Some of the other party members were on the road, heading the same direction.
When we finally got to the giants, one was pulling a cart full of loot, while the others were following. The group attacked with Davok doing serious damage, he really hates giants. We didn’t want to let them get into the woods, but it was close. We killed them all, but lost Annie in the process. And I believe that was it. The town is a mess, we’ve lost another party member, and we still haven’t figured out what the giants were after in the first place.
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Action report, draft, Simon Roque reporting
1) As Rikert and I jogged toward the fight at the town hall, I had time to drink another healing potion. Pretty boy is a damned good fighter, but he’s not exactly fast on his feet. He did mention that he’d run all the way from the Rusty Dragon to the north gate already, and had yet to see a live giant; so far they all looked like pin cushions for Davok’s arrows.
2) We turned the corner at the southeast of the town hall, and I could see that there were two giants apparently pounding nails into the hall’s roof, while another was on the ground before us hucking rocks. I drank another Enlarge potion, and got ready to charge. At that moment, Haytham (in his form of a REALLY big Roc) and his pet bird (the one with only a 30’ wingspan) swooped to the aid of whoever was on the roof. At the same moment, Lynn swooped down over the roofs to the south and skewered the giant on the ground, leaving a smoking hole in its chest. I shouted to them asking where the hell Moxie and Annie were, and Haytham answered (weird to hear a gigantic bird speaking common) that they had gone after some giants attacking the brewery. Now I’m REALLY mad. Not only are the two girls off on their own, but there might be NO MORE BEER! Next they’ll tell me that the Pixie’s Kitten is on fire and all the whores are dead. I looked down at Rikert and said, “I’ve still got a haste potion.” He replied, “me too,” so we drank them and took off toward the brewery.
3) It didn’t take long to leave poor Rikert in the dust. I could see through the occasional gap between buildings that Lynn was heading the same way up in the air, slower, but with a far more direct route. Haytham and his pet flew over, and seemed to be carrying Davok. No sign of Xandu anywhere; I hoped he was already there and hadn’t bought that fscking asylum he talks about. As I blew past the town theater, I could see part of the dragon hanging limply from the roof. Good riddance.
4) My haste potion wore off as I rounded the corner of the town square onto Market Street. I was still moving at a dead run, as Haytham’s pet hit a giant right in front of the brewery (which was a total wreck, I’m sad to say). Other giants seemed to be moving toward the battle as I huffed up, but one just collapsed into the street. Haytham hit another one, and the last one fell as I came panting to a halt. We quickly took stock as Haytham returned to human form and neatly trussed up a sleeping giant. We still had to get to the noble’s homes as it seemed there were more giants over there. Another half mile to run the long way around the bay, so I offered to piggy-back Moxie and she swarmed up to my shoulder. The others were all taking to the air (Lynn had touched Davok, so he was flying too) and I thought that I would be late to the party AGAIN, when Haytham said he could fly me, even as big as I was. Damn, that guy is useful to have around.
5) Took to the air and headed toward the tower of smoke coming from the Scarnetti mansion, but shouts from Davok turned us east toward the bridge over Boggy Creek; it looked like a group of giants were pulling a wagon into the woods, and we quickly descended to the ground behind them. My Enlarge potion had worn off, and Haytham had outrun the others so it was just him, Moxie and me, all wounded, facing four fresh giants. I was too pissed off to be worried.
6) The giants charged as I drank yet another Enlarge potion. The other fliers showed up in a timely fashion, Moxie blasting away with her pistol, Annie dancing around flanking and stabbing giants and Haytham grappling one. I managed to damage mine and shoved him back a few feet, when he looked to his left and made a tent-peg out of Annie with his club. Before I could finish him, Davok made him into another pin cushion, so I stabbed and killed the one Haytham was playing with.
Score so far: Storm Guardians- 23 giants, some dire bears and one dragon; invaders one ninja/witch, and maybe a cleric of Desna. Unacceptable losses, as far as I’m concerned; I sure hope this town appreciates it.
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Reloading “Uther” in rapid succession I blasted away at the giant from the remains of the Tannery roof. Even through my gloves I could feel the intense heat coming from the barrel of the wand as I plunged alchemical charges in to its maw. With no time to accommodate the fear of an unintended discharge I cast gouts of smoke, sparks and lead after him until he wheeled to face me. Wiping his now tender lower back and measuring the flow of life escaping from my efforts he focused his intent upon me. He advanced through the rubble of the Tannery and swung a post from the building at me, missing. I backed from his reach toward the river on the rickety roof and unloaded another volley stitching him in the gut sack. He noticed that! Stepping forward clearing away a portion of the roof he flung it at me and missed. Then he snatched up the stone chimney and heaved it, luckily in his rage and attempt to snap it from its perch he cracked it into smaller chunks. As he cast it, it shattered and though it hurt bad, it was not as bad as it could have been, and did not splash me into the river! I moved back for the last time to the edge of the roof, this was it, my limit; I would retreat no more and would not go voluntarily into the river. More quick reports found their mark in his scorched chest and the last went in below the jaw and widened his eyes. Then came a welcomed spell strike from one of the druids, if I were to guess I would venture to say it was Hayseed but in the thick of my struggle with a giant and his humungous bears trying to eat me, smoke, fire, lightning, chaos swirling all about with any number of the troupe airborne and screams of “DRAGON!!” piercing the cacophony of combat it can be difficult at best to discern the particulars in a pitched battle! The giant was pelted with a wicked swirl of ice shards and fell into the ice covered ruin of the interior of the Tannery with no life to spare. (SPIT!) I moved to the south west corner of the roof and found Sheldor fighting one of the bears. Stepping to the edge of the roof overlooking the ruin I gained an advantageous perch from which to unleash Uther fury! Three shots were all I was required to contribute in concert with disturbingly close bolts of sky lightning that left my skin tingling, and a most awful stench of ozone mixed with the smoke from the alchemical charges and smoldering bear fur…(SPIT!)
I scoured the scene from the Tannery roof…Lynn, Sheldor, Hayseed, Xandu, and Duh’rock raining his angst from the cemetery cliff. They had these bears in hand, Annie and I decided quickly to make for the Lost Coast Road Bridge. Annie scooped me up again and we flew for the latest arrival in town. On our way Annie and I agreed on a plan of attack. We needed to get a jump on one of them. We would not last but for a quick strike and then we must resign from sight to attempt another moment of surprise and continue on that track until we were dead or reinforced. We decided to adjust our flight plan to land north of the bridge in hopes of coming down unobserved. I suggested Annie pick the target and loose her ability to vex it, and then I would attempt a volley of laced arrows. Should that not suffice I asked her to try to make one of them fall asleep with her tian witches lullaby, if that failed…well we were doomed! I simply wish to have one of these beasts tell us what if anything they may know! Who knows if we play our cards right maybe we can get one of them to see the wretchedness and futility of their designs. A stone giant would be handy to have about for rebuilding! Then I spied a fire at the Scarnetti Mansion…EGADS! Where are they all coming from…how many more are there?!?
As we flew in the predawn sky I saw a pitched battle rage around the theater and bid Annie land on a roof top near our destination so we might offer assistance if it was required. But no sooner than we landed and found a perch to observe from than we noticed the fight had come to an end. In the dark and shadows cast by firelight I could not discern how many of the troupe were present but they seemed to head off towards our query and I was comforted by that. Annie and I slipped from the roof and made our way through the street quietly and carefully until we could see our prey. She picked the target standing in the middle of the street and we ducked back to cover to prepare our assault. I slipped on my goggles, confirmed Uther’s condition of readiness, tightened my straps and buckles for combat, and picked the best of my laced arrows. We heard the calls of the troupe as the passed on foot and in the air. They would not wait! They would go in and hack every last one of them to bits! Annie was still preparing herself…I couldn’t wait… I stepped from the shadows of the store fronts and knelt facing the bridge just within comfortable range for my best shooting. Knocking my first arrow I heard the initial clash of the giants and the troupe. This afforded me some extra bit of time as the distraction gave me the reprieve to take careful aim. As he roared and made ready for combat with the rest of the troupe I focused on his soft armpit with my new goggles as he raised his arms in protest. I loosed the first arrow and watched it disappear entirely under his arm. He lurched from the bite and quickly lowered his arm. I loosed the second shaft with less care of accuracy wishing only to strike to make the application more effective. Lo and behold, it found the mark in his stummy burrowing half way in. I replaced my bow with Uther and waited to see if the sting set in. HUZZAH!!! The oaf’s eyes rolled back and he collapsed in the street only mildly hurt and out like a light! I rushed to claim my prize and prevent an untimely slaying! I arrived as the last giant fell and informed the troupe of the assault on the Scarnetti Mansion. I took Brisket’s offer and climbed to his shoulder and wrapped his head in a scarf to protect his ear from the report of my wand should it be require while mounted…EEWW! Did I just say that out loud?!?! Ugh!!
Hayseed shaped himself into a giant bird and carried both of us into the sky towards the fire. En route we spotted a band of giants pulling a wagon off into the trees. We dove into the trees and landed close to them. Four giants looking fresh and unscathed, this will be interesting as our troupe looks like we’ve been fighting giants, bears and dragons… and only a third of us are present…Ooi!! The giants advanced on us giving no quarter! I could only back off and fire Uther in hopes of leading them to the rest of the troupe whom I hoped were on their way! I took two heinous blows from the club as he approached! This would not suffice, I would not out last this onslaught! I saw the instrument of my doom and whispered “Eternal Rose embrace me!” Just then a hail of arrows and spells ravaged the giants and their numbers were cut in half. The unengaged giant stepped forward and decided to attack Annie instead of me, and at the moment that suited me fine…until the second blow landed. “GASP!!” The crack of bone and pulp of flesh resounded in the blow, sending Annie flying in the form of a lifeless ragdoll. I stepped in and blasted the oaf as did half the troupe and that was the end of his existence. (SPIT!) The final giant was ended by the others. I hesitate to approach her for fear the damage is more than I can repair or endure. But my partner in combat will need a woman’s touch and deserves as much as the others who have gone before her! This day has just begun…literally…and what is yet to come!?! Who knows??
Nicely written! Sorry about Annie's end. :( Though I will admit some surprise that the giants fought to the last entity. It made for a much more deadly fight!
(I shudder to think of what Moxie would do if she had Mythic power! That would be a most... insane combination!)
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And I ran, I ran so far away.
I just ran, I ran all night and day.
I wouldn't get to play.
*With apologies to A Flock of Seagulls
Rikert Krupt – (tired) Paladin of Iomedae
After pushing my warhorse to his limits on the sprint from Magnimar to Sandpoint, I now know what he felt like.
The morning started with me running from the Rusty Dragon all the way to the north wall, just in time to heal Davok and return him to the fight. I then made my way (running) back through the streets to try and locate the next location where the giants had invaded. Along the way, I encountered Simon and the dragon locked in combat. As Simon fell to the dragon, I charged the beast, only to have it fly away after a final breath of fire that washed over both of us. I healed Simon, and he and I ran to the sounds of battle from the center of town.
We reached the area and saw Davok and Xandu killing the last of several giants with help from Haytham and his Roc. (I still haven't encountered a living giant yet during the whole siege!)
Following the directions of Haytham who had a good view of the town, we once again ran (ironically back toward the Rusty Dragon where I started) toward the sounds of combat. Even with a haste potion, I could not keep pace with my companions who use flight and magical travel to cover the distances quickly.
When I arrived back in the southern section of town, I was exhausted and felt of little use other than healing during the entire battle. I decided it was time to saddle my horse in the stable and stop running in plate armor. So, with a little help from Sheldor who arrived at the stables after me, I am mounted and ready to ride along the road to the upper areas outside the town where the giants have attacked the Scarnetti mansion and other homes of the wealthy residents of Sandpoint.
Seriously! I have not swung my sword once during this battle, and running in plate armor sucks! ;-)
I joked that I should have finished my breakfast at the Rusty Dragon, taken my time to saddle my horse, and waited for combat to reach me!
Things calmed down. We had a lot of damage everywhere. I started out by the giants that had been looting the Scarnetti mansion. We had people in bags that needed to be freed and aided. By the time Sheldor and Rikert showed up, we had freed most of them and they were able to get them up and moving. We got them, and more importantly, Mr. Scarnetti himself going back to his mansion with his belongings, and I headed back to town and help with the clean up. I wandered back to where I had left the dragon. I got Hatham to come help me drag it down off the roof of the theater, and take it out of town. He said he could cast a spell to see if we could find his treasure, but he’d need to wait until he renewed his spells and he’d need some of the dragon hide. I helped him with that and went back to town. To see what else I could do. I started helping with clean up and getting rid of the dead giants and bears. There is talk of putting some skulls on areas for a warning to others.
There were two captive giants still to deal with. We got the one off the roof of city hall and had the other brought so they were together. I heard later that there were discussions as to what to do with them, but we really wanted information about what was going on. I’m not sure the town leaders were completely behind the idea but let our group take the lead. They left city guard to watch them.
I spent the next few days digging graves and helping around town. Others in our group tried to get the giants to talk and give us information. Eventually it worked and they told us a spellcasting giants was gathering an army of giants with about 700 giants plus lots of other large creatures. The giants agreed to do a week’s worth of work and then leave safely and not join the giant army.
I am going to Magnimar. I need supplies, and maybe upgrade some equipment. Probably reacquaint myself with my deity. I’ll leave others to get the governments involved in the upcoming fight. We seem to have been going for weeks with very little rest, one fight after another and now another looming. Where are the others fighting this evil? It can’t be up to us alone to turn the tide. I guess I should bemoan the loss of a companion, but …
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After Action report, 1 Kuthona, Simon Roque reporting:
1) The giants dead, Davok took to the sky to look for more live ones. That greenskin sure does hate giants. Lynn and Haytham started dragging folk out of the leather bags the giants had carried, and I turned to the wagon to see about this “relic” they were supposedly after. Lynn was able to tell me that none of it was magic, so I snooped around a bit. Some tapestries, chests of flatware, casks of wine (and one of salad dressing; who keeps a cask of that stuff around? Rich guys, that’s who), and a really nice silver inlaid teak desk. The owner wasn’t objecting, so I rifled the drawers and found a cute little hidden compartment with some letters inside. I pointed them out to Moxie (they were little more than notes, really) but they seemed to have some significance to her; she got real serious for a bit, and then stuffed them into her shirt. I got a feeling somebody’s not going to be too happy about having that stuff found.
2) Helped put out the fire at Scarnetti’s mansion, then back to the town proper to deal with the aftermath. Rikert and I managed to get a trussed up giant down from the roof of the town hall (Xandu wasn’t dead after all, he’d been ‘tied up’ with securing that giant. I’ve never seen more granny knots in a piece of rope in my entire life), then we dragged both of our prisoners up to the market square to be dealt with. I figured we’d just build a fire under their feet until we heard what we needed and then turn them over to the townsfolk, but Davok said that to get anything out of them, we’d have to sweet-talk ‘em. Not up my alley, so I left it to Moxie and Rikert. The mayor declared us all to be “heroes of Sandpoint, as if we cared; but if it meant free room at board at the Rusty Dragon, I’d take it. Paid for a nice Hero’s Welcome at the Kitten as well; the best feeling in the world is a good roll in the hay after a fight.
3) The master brewer died in a bag of one of the giants at the brewery. Xandu spoke with the body, but apparently the guy didn’t want to be raised. Neither did Annie. I’m gonna miss that weird little girl, I never had any problems with her.
4) It took Moxie and Rikert nearly a week to break the giants, but they finally got them talking. Found out that this fellow Mocmurian, “a dark giant of old,” has put together an army of seven tribes of giants; this was just one of their scouting parties. Mocmurian was holed up beneath a tower he called “Jotunfist,” in a valley east of the Storvall Stairs. I got a feeling I know where we’re heading next. Moxie and the mayor worked a deal where the giants worked for a week to repair damage they’d done, and then they got to walk away. I figured we’d just wind up fighting them again.
5) An actual army arrived from Magnimar. About 250 guys and some paladins of Iomedae (Rikert’s drinking buddies, I suspect. Assuming any of them let a drop of evil alcohol pass their holy lips), got here just too late to be of any use.
6) Once we got squared away, Xandu teleported Rikert, Lynn and Haytham to Magnimar. The rest of us decided to ride and be sure of our arrival. Time to gear up again…
Rikert Krupt – Paladin of Iomedae
After saddling my horse, Sheldor and I hurried up the road to the Scarnetti mansion, only to find that the battle really was over. It was here that we heard of Annie's demise at the hands of one of the giants in the woods. She and several of the other party members had hurried to stop several giants from leaving Sandpoint with live captives and other stolen items. During the course of the skirmish, Annie got too close to one of the giants and paid the ultimate price.
She was a quiet and odd girl, but her stealthy abilities and hedge magic aided us many times against our foes. She deserves a place of honor along with the other fallen heroes.
Following the immediate cleanup and healing of the most seriously injured, we turned our attention to the two giants who had been captured alive. Threats proved to be ineffective in persuading them, so Moxie and I were charged with questioning them over the period of several days to gain information about the reason for the giants' attack on Sandpoint.
During this time, troops from Magnimar arrived to provide security, along with several other traveling paladins of Iomedae who immediately began to help the wounded townspeople. This freed up my fellow party members to focus on gathering information and prepare for our next action.
The information we gathered wasn't what we wanted to hear. It seems that this attack was only a small raiding party sent to scout the surrounding areas while an army of giants and creatures was being raised by Mokmurian, a name we had heard before.
The army is gathering north of us at the Storval Plateau, so we now have to warn the Lord Mayor of Magnimar, and then prepare ourselves for the inevitable conflict with Mokmurian. We hope to strike the head of the snake, so to speak, and avoid a drawn-out confrontation against a host of giants.
Well, I said it once via Private Message (trying to find out whether Moxie was continuing to read Leilani's thread), and I'll say it again here: In all the campaign journals I've read, this was the single best-run giant attack I've seen. Ever. Far better than mine.
Well done, Useplanb! Color me extremely impressed!
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Okay, my apologies for not having written anything for the past three weeks. I usually do all my posts in the lulls while at work or when I just need a break from my job. That being said, the past three weeks have been stupid busy for me and if I am not working overtime or over the holidays then I was just really damn busy. So when I did have a break, I put my brain in neutral and played Minecraft. Zero thinking.
The entire assault on Sandpoint for the army ran three weeks long, with the actual "fluff" taking a fourth week. Week 1 was rounds 1-9 of the assault, week 2 was rounds 10-20 (oddly enough) and week 3 was rounds 21-40 ish.
Now I will go ahead and say this, for the entire encounter I had at least 8 players at the table, sometimes 9. I doubled the amount of all the encounters and Longtooth and Teraktinus (sp?) were advanced. With the ranger able to outright kill a giant (or very closely) per round, a druid and animal companion that could grapple a giant each and pretty much guarantee a pin, and everyone else, doubling the encounter size was no big deal.
I will also say that I made a HUGE blunder and forgot to have Longtooth run when he was at 50 hp or less. He ended up staying in the fight and because of that he died. I also altered from the "rules/tactics" by having Teraktinus threaten both Xandu and Davok instead of outright killing them, which I could have done. The opening swing by him resulted in a nat 19 on the d20 and improved crit with a heavy pick (x4), and a 33 STR meant I took the ranger from 2/3 ish to negative something in 1 swing. I didn't want to kill off the party members (especially since that would have been the third death with one player). Mostly because I didn't want to hear about it from said player, but also because his actions put Xandu's in a bad spot. Needless to say, they did it anyway and my dice went ice cold with the remaining giants from his encounter group. I'll let player journals give you that story.
I did alter the Scarnetti encounter to them having looted what they wanted and leaving. The rules did say that the giants would run if two conditions were met. But seriously, how the hell would a bunch of loot happy giants with no resistance know to run because x amount of bears had been killed and y amount of giants, and/or Teraktinus/Longtooth being killed? They aren't superman/men. So they would be arrogant giants and do arrogant giant things.
The last week, aka the "fluff" week was learning what they could from the giants and dealing with what happened and who died. In this case both the tanner and brewer were killed by players using AoE spells on giants with human captives in their bags. There was a very interesting conversation as players and characters when Xandu suggested using two of his 5k diamonds to raise both of them and using augury's to find out if they would like to be raised. An offer was even given to Longtooth, but was quickly squashed by both the druid and magus.
Moxie decided an appropriately awesome thing to do with the letters from the Scarnetti desk. I even described that the town was already beginning to joke about how much of a tight-wad Titus was because he was seen walking the route the giants took from his manor trying to find every last coin they took. (Or so they thought.)
Learning what they could from the giants became another role-play encounter because as the paladin shockingly learned, the giants aren't evil. They did come to the realization that they were all younger, but nothing more. With some modifiers because of time and a willingness to feed the giants they learned what they needed to know and as players I was surprised when they all asked the questions listed in the AP as to how the giant would respond to a question. Players are starting to learn that info gathering skills as well as bluff and diplomacy are just as important as intimidate, which seems to be the party skill of choice for info gathering. Heroes-ish. :)
I'm probably forgetting some stuff, and I will be glad to answer them in subsequent posts or PMs. Thanks NobodysHome and Tangent101 for enjoying the read (its exhaustingly long and rife with errors) most of the time. Post as much as you want, don't ever feel like you are "hijacking" a thread.
So, epic fail on my end last night. I don't have the print version of the AP, only the PDF. I generally will print out the part of the story we are on, and the following one to make sure I have everything in case we get that far in the story. I also have been lazy the past month or so an have just brought my dice instead of: a mountain of books, a lap top, cardboard minatures, prepainted minatures, etc. I showed up, sat down and found all my miniatures, and my core rule book which I leave there, and all the parts of the AP we have played so far except the one we were about to start. Which was in my laptop bag at home, 30 or so miles away.
On the plus side, we spent most of the evening fine tuning purchases in Magnimar since this was one of the few times the AP lets the players take a break.
We did some RP with the lord mayor of magnimar (also forgot that campaign setting book) about the information learned at this point. I had a dinner with the lord mayor, two "military advisors" the captain of the prison (who has become the go to guy for getting a meeting with the lord mayor), and Rikert. I allowed a comment of "even if we wanted to ask Korvosa for help," to slide into the conversation from the captain to help drive home the point that Magnimar considers itself to be the de facto capital of Varisia (also forgot that player companion book for the much needed maps).
Then did some general role play in Sandpoint with those trusting Xandu not to fail his teleport from Magnimar. Most of that came from the harmless hitting on Shalelu by Xandu and Lynn until they realized that Davok was giving them the "Vinder Stare." Davok having taken on a pseudo-fatherly role over Shalelu since his backstory had him as an old friend of Jakardros.
There was also role play when they realized that the giants were still in town. I decided that the two remaining giants from the raid on Sandpoint, had decided to stay in Sandpoint for protection. In their minds, they hate that they are laboring to repair the damage they caused, but honor bound to do so. At the same time, the lesser races, are becoming more prevalent in the area and if they were to leave the possibility of being mistaken as "raiders" and hunted down were greater with Mokmurian's army on the way. It was safer for them to stay and wait out the war before leaving. This drove the giant hating Davok to watch them like a hawk while waiting for the others to arrive from Magnimar who left on foot. While doing this he discovered Aesrick Battlehorn sitting off to the side of where the giants were working, and drawing. Since I used the player created events for the Swallowtail Festival I had Aesrick using this opportunity to draw as much detail as he could of the giants so that next Swallowtail Festival, his toy catapult launchers would look better than previous years.
We also used this time to introduce Flak, the half-orc Monk/Barbarian. With the constant flow of do-gooders (paladins of Iomedae) heading to Sandpoint, and now an army from Magnimar to the Storval Stairs, there were plenty of adventurers, helpers, workers, etc. heading to Sandpoint. This made the reason for the ex-Witch/Ninja player to introduce his new character. It should be a fun character to see, his role-play introduction when asked what he did was in a gravely, and somewhat loud voice, "I found enlightenment. They lied." So he went 8 or so levels in monk before going barbarian.
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To be honest? Cleric. Very effective defensive spell slinger... with a couple Summon Feats will have critters fighting for him that appear the same round as summoned while having Smite and attacks that count as magical, and the ability to heal yourself when a huge giant tries to squish you into mint jelly.
Prior to Action Report, 13 Kuthona, Simon Roque reporting.
1) Headed to Magnimar on horseback, arrived without incident. Decided for once to take advantage of my coin for something other than gear, beer and gash; booked a room in a high class inn for a week, and prepaid for meals and ale. Still spent nearly all my money on the other three more typical items. As far as gear, upgraded the Cloak of Resistance, replenished stocks of cure and enlarge potions (as well as splurging on a couple of “special occasion” potions), and bought a “war hat” purported to have special qualities. It’s black iron and covers my face and head completely, with a grilled area to look through. Quite dashing and matches the new armor.
2) Wound up lounging about Magnimar waiting for everyone else to finish their business. From the rumors I started hearing on the 5th, I estimate that Rikert dropped a bomb on the city fathers at dinner the night before; they seem to be running scared. I just hope that pompous jackass Grobaras is scared ENOUGH.
3) Headed back to Sandpoint (on the same horse I rented to come to Magnimar) on the 11th, same day the Magnimar “army” departed in the same direction on the Lost Coast Road. Those greenhorns are going to get chewed up and spat out by the first bunch of giants that sees them. Left early and managed to stay ahead of them, spent the evening at the Half-Way Inn. We got rooms and a table before the place filled to standing room only. A greenskin who looked a lot like Davok’s long-lost brother was wedged in fairly close to our table, and asked if he could travel with us. Big guy, tusks, no obvious weapons but heavily calloused knuckles. Told him we’d leave at first light, and if he could keep up with a horse he could come. It might be the tusks, but this fellow looks like he has a few anger management issues to work out; hopefully he’ll elect to work them out on giants and other enemies of ours.
4) Arrived in Sandpoint and introduced the greenskin, who said his name was Flak. Turned out he wasn’t Davok’s brother; they claimed not to know each other. Hmmf, the world ain’t that big. Heading on north in the morning; had the forethought to buy a decent map of Varisia in Magnimar, I’ve a feeling it will come in handy on an extended overland march.
What kind of stats are you interested in, Mudfoot? Between us, Rikert, Moxie and I can probably come up with whatever you'd like.
Just the basics, really. Levels, classes (I can guess everyone's class(es) unless there's a bit of dipping going on), any other notable things.
I just don't like to break verisimilitude when I'm writing in Simon's voice.
Oh goodness, don't do that. Keep the mechanics in a separate post, please.
Wow. This took some reading to get through! ^^;;
Useplanb, I don't suppose you could provide us an update with the classes and levels of each player at this point? I must admit some curiosity... and embarrassment that I've had trouble keeping track of who does what at times! ^^;;
I can handle this one, I think. Going around the table from the GM's left, Rikert is a 9th level Human Paladin of Iomedae, Xandu (or Zandu, he can't decide which) is a 9th level Half-Elf Cleric of Desna, Davok is a 9th level Half-Orc Ranger, Annie (or Tian) is a Human multi-classed Ninja/Witch (not sure of the split there, but they add up to 9th), Moxie is a Gnome multi-classed Rogue/Gunslinger (again, not sure of the split; I think about Rogue 6 Gunslinger 3), Lynn is a 9th level Elf Magus, Haytham is a 9th level Human Druid, and Simon is a 9th level Human sword-and-board Fighter.
Note that not everyone is there all the time; life sometimes intervenes and the army goes on as best it can without some characters actively participating some weeks. It certainly keeps Useplanb on his toes.
Also, keep in mind that about 90% of what Moxie posts happens nowhere outside of Moxie's pretty little head. ;-)
Add one level to everyone. Our only multi-classers are Moxie (who added another level of Gunslinger) and now Flak as a Monk 8/Barbarian 2.
Going from memory, Simon is currently at AC 32 (+2 Comfort Plate Mail, +2 Heavy Spiked Mithral Bashing shield, Jingasa of the Fortunate Soldier [don't tell Useplanb, I want it to be a surprise], +1 Ring of Protection, +1 Amulet of Natural Armor, +3 Dex bonus). He swings a +1 Frost cold-iron longsword (recently traded up for one that glows and has the 'frost' ability; I got tired of having to drop my everburning torch and draw my sword before stepping into combat. Yes, I know about the 'shield sconce', I just think it's stupid); I really wanted something to bring his damage up a bit. He does his part by sucking up a huge number of hits with a high AC (highest in our party, I believe), but having a Smiting Paladin and an 'Empowered Shocking Grasp' Magus standing alongside is a little embarrassing. The Shield and all the Shield feats help, along with 2-Weapon Fighting and now Improved 2-Weapon Fighting, but I'm really looking forward to Shield Master at 11th level.
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I don't have a problem with the Monk/Barbarian. In fact I loved the description of a half-orc who is trying to overcome his orcish urges and through "enlightenment" succeeds. If only for a short time. Like an addict who falls off the wagon, the return to the old is often quick and violent, and the climb to redemption is long and slow. In almost every way this combination of classes is a mirror of life.
What kind of stats are you interested in, Mudfoot? Between us, Rikert, Moxie and I can probably come up with whatever you'd like. I just don't like to break verisimilitude when I'm writing in Simon's voice.
Player Note: My dear Simon, that's what aliases are for!
As promised, I have dropped by to visit Sandpoint, but it seems that I must have missed you. Sandpoint seems a bit... broken? Still, it's nicer than Riddleport, to say the least. And the two very tall gentlemen are very kindly helping you rebuild! Are they shadow men? They look very much like Zokrim the shadow man, but... bigger...
Oh, my GM has caught me running amok on another's thread! I must flee back to my own before she clips my wings! Farewell, and good travels!
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(some things are out of sequence and direction a little fuzzy but it’s all true)
Giants at the Gate
I spent the next day preparing for battle and the others to arrive from Magnimar. I went out to the Sanitarium to check on them and to have them ready to receive guest’s if the need should arise. They were troubled but said they would do what ever I needed them to do. The brothers where a bit worried about people staying there because of their obvious tiefling heritage. I told them that if people started showing up that the brothers appearance would be the least of their worries. Back to town I went, I found the herbalist that Friedrich had befriended.
I knew that she had helped the wounded in the past here in Sandpoint so I gave her some scrolls blessed with Desna’s healing power and told her to use them as she saw fit. I also informed her that Friedrich would be coming here within a few weeks. She smiled and thanked me for the scrolls. She took my hand thanked me for the information about Friedrich, she looked forward to seeing him again. As she let my hand go she said you all have been so generous I, we all appreciate what you’ve done for us. Thank you. A bit embarrassed I said you’re welcome, we’ve all grown in faith and friendship from these past tragedies. May Desna keep us safe from harm in the future. I left her and realized I don’t even know her name. I almost went back to ask it but was to ashamed to. I will ask Moxie.
That evening the others arrived from Magnimar and were filled in on our attempts of fortifying the town’s defenses. Simon had the planks removed from one of the bridges coming into town but left the other bridge intact in case it was needed for an escape route. I had placed several wards against giants out past the North Gate and even a couple down in the smugglers tunnels. Extra guards were added to all posts. I don’t know what else was done but everyone was very nervous that night. Moxie and I played and danced for the Rusty Dragon crowd but the mood was somber at best. Moxie came to my room as I was readying myself to go to the temple and pray.
I invited her in but in moxie style she declined as if I’d asked just a bit to much, always the playful one, questioning me about my mood and making me laugh she had me kneel down and she gave me one of Ramod’s belongings, a compass then she said and did the sweetest thing she’s ever done for me. “Ramod left two remembrances behind and I realize now that this one wasn’t meant for me. It will help you find your way ” She ended by calling me Butterfly, a Desna reference, I was sure. We said good night and I left and went to the temple to pray.
On my way I saw Davok and Simon heading for the North gate. After prayer I returned to the Rusty dragon for a quick nap before dawn. I woke just before sunrise and hurried into my clothes. I then began going from door to door waking all the troupe. Simon didn’t answer and at first I thought he’d drank to much and probably had his kitten with him, until I remembered he and Davok and figured that he must be still at the North Gate. The rest were getting up and asking for breakfast when the bell started ringing. At first nothing happened then we realized that the ringing must mean that the giants were here. We all started running for the North Gate. I gave Lynn the ability to fly if he needed and asked for Desna’s grace to use me as a shield for his wounds.
Large boulders landed with deafening crashes. Dirt, mortar and stone all gave way to their size and velocity. They were rolling in the streets and hitting buildings. It sounded and looked like some of Friedrich’s concoctions but worse. At first people would step out to see what was going on and then realizing we were actually under an attack ran back into their homes. I saw many men come out of their homes, not heading the protest’s of their wives, with hardly a weapon at all and head in differing directions. I saw a husband kiss his wife and kids then leaving them in tears run to help defend their town. I felt small and caught up in a whirlwind, a frenzy that was frightening but I kept my calm. Lynn was in front of me running as fast as he could. Rikert unfortunately was falling behind. Lynn and I turned a corner and heard cries from our right so into the air we both ran, trying to get above the rooftops to see what was happening.
The boulders that were landing in town were coming from the direction of the North Gate but there were battle cries coming from the east side of town near the Tannery so we headed in that direction knowing that part of town was less defended than the North. We could see giants and huge bears coming across the river and smashing into homes. The bears would enter the home and the giant would rip through the roof and pull a person out and stuff them into large bags that they carried on their backs. Anne had flown Moxie to the roof of the tannery and dropped her there. Annie was casting spells at the giants and Moxie fired shot after shot into the attackers. Lynn also fired one spell after another but yelled that he needed to get into hand to hand with them in order to be effective (WHAT?). Desna All Mighty he’s gone nuts. I did my best to keep him alive while he, Anne and Moxie blasted away at the giants. At one point we were doing pretty good and Lynn said that when the last of these four giants falls I should go get Davok and meet him near the mill where we could see more giants entering town. That’s what I did.
The last of these giants fell and I moved to Davok who was shooting or trying to shoot the giants moving through town. I said “I can get you a little closer if you’d like” he grunted and praying to Desna we moved to the Town Hall for a better view. “Oh shift a dragon” Davok was putting arrow after arrow into the giants. One of the giants said “Stop that or Ill kill you myself” Davok of course let lose another arrow and the giant took a huge pick and drove it through Davok like spearing a fish. Only like with a really big pick hammer. The giant smiled and turned to the other giants and said “If they continue, KILL THEM.“ As he turned and walked away I healed Davok. Davok stood up looked at the waiting giants drew his bow and shot the giant that had just gutted him. Half orcs are “MAD” Then he put arrow after arrow into that giant until it fell. But I couldn’t take my eyes off of what had to be a dragon laying on the theater roof. That’s right a dragon.
What was it doing there? Was it alive or dead? I couldn’t figure out but then something very big hit me and I had to come back to reality. The giants were bombarding us with clubs and rocks and pieces of the building itself. Davok must have kept shooting arrows… DUH. I kept healing us and even shared damage with Davok. Then two giants climbed up onto the roof with us and were finally brought down before killing me. There were reports of more giants across the way towards the Scarnetti’s. I yelled to Davok that there were more giants out by the nobles homes and he was gone. Now this giant on the roof wasn’t “All dead” only “mostly dead“. There is a difference and I thought it would be a good idea to tie it up for questioning. That’s what I did. About a half hour later we were done with the attack and we were helping the towns folk and taking stock of the damage. And our loss of Annie and others.
I went as far and to talk with some of the deceased to ask if they wanted brought back “to life” but all refused my offer. All except the dragon. “Oh”, the dragon was real and was the only one that would accept my offer of life but I couldn’t bring it back. For one reason I think that the druid and Lynn would not like it very much if I did and besides I didn’t trust the dragon no matter how sincere it sounded. I left it with Lynn and Haytham.
Listening to the others Moxie had befriended “somewhat” the giants in captivity (yes, two were spared) and in exchange for information and help in a weeks time they would be allowed to leave without harm. With Ramod’s trusty compass in hand I teleported Rikert, Lynn and Haytham to Magnimar to trade our booty. The rest would fly or ride there. We traded our wears and back to Sanpoint we went. This time I took Davok, Lynn and Rikert. Lynn and I were able to have some fun with Ameiko and Shalelu until we noticed Davok “frowning” (snarling) at us for our attempts at flirting with Shalelu. Spoil sport.
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The Taming of the Two
The pitched battle had past the flashpoint and come to a quick end. I sat on the nearest giant and began to rebuke him in a quiet calm indignance. In the middle of our parlance, Brisket called for my assistance in the wagon load of loot the giants had been carting away. He presented me three letters of correspondence which he tactfully pointed out he had found in a secret compartment of a fancy silver inlaid desk. Huh!?! Brisket has some skills other than bruiser extraordinaire, impressive! As I perused the content of the letters, it became wholly apparent that I was in procession of damning evidence that would implicate Ol’man Scarnetti and Vishki in a conspiracy of the arson of the mill, that payment had been received and additional extortion demanded for silence of said crime. I could cut him down this very instant and be justif…NOOO! No,no,no, he’s not worth it, and will provide much more alive than dead! I quickly stuffed them in a warm safe place beneath my shirt, to address them this evening when I had more time to conjure wicked thoughts! Besides they were just unpacking the Ol’ man and his entourage from the giants snack bags and we needed to be seen as being helpful and not scrounging through his treasures! After reclaiming the Scarnetti from their state of prepackaged meal-dom, we scampered to the estate to help put out the fire. Once accomplished I returned with Xandu to care for Annie.
EGADS! Whatamess!! I knelt at her side not knowing where to start. The expression, the unnatural form and contorted limbs!! It was unbearable!! I stepped away and let him do what could be done. Then I heard him speaking, as though he were trying to have a conversation with her. I turned in time to hear a response that chilled me to the bone…she declined to return to us!!? This was a most disturbing transaction! I did not think it possible to converse with the dead, let alone decline the offer to live again!?! Barely past time for breakfast and so much as yet unimagined has transpired already! I waited in reverence and a bit of fear…for Xandu, as I had not seen a dead person talk that hadn’t attempted to eat me….until he had finished his conversation and said his “peace” over her. I approached again and finished in righting her petite frame and gave her visage a more graceful countenance and began cleaning her up for the walk into town. I collected her gear and followed as Xandu carried her back to the temple. There we laid her as Father Zantus instructed and attended to her repose as best as could be accomplished. Looking around I found others whom I could assist and did the best possible to provide as fine a “peace” as was possible for other victims. I had until now never openly used my natural gifts in public, at least not that anyone could be completely sure about. I had always used them sparingly in performances and tried my level best to keep patrons guessing. This called for all the talent and compassion that could be brought to bear.
I walked out of the Cathedral and took stock of the town in the winters sun. The fires now mostly out and smoke still billowing into the air, the towns people shaken and weary, I could not afford my moment yet. I moved from the families tending their wounded militiamen to the grieving widows and orphans. I walked the path of destruction and prayed with believers thankful for salvation. Making my way through town I attempted to put a brave face on the day and reassured everyone help was on the way and that rebuilding was of paramount importance. I found myself watching as they dragged my giant to the guardhouse, and walked on to the docks. There I collected a pail of bait fish leaving my remittance in the usual spot in the tackle box and walked off to the bridge.
As I crossed the bridge my anxiety began to build as I turned east and walked up the river, pausing at the sight of the Tannery. I stared at the ledge that had held me long enough to finish our work and watched it sway precariously in the morning breeze. I was cold but paid it no mind, so much had happened there. Annie had delivered me and plucked me away…from there! So much had happened there, that I was responsible for. There was no repayment for my damages. None that would matter! I felt the pressure building and wanted to let it go, but it had to wait. I could see the path the assailants had stomped and began to take heaving breaths in anticipation. My eyes began to blur as I approached the root ball where I had hidden my raft. I could not speak; the tears rolled down my face as I marched in a clumsy effort over the ice and hugged the pail in my arms! I managed a muffled call, no response came! Shaking from fright I called out louder! In an excruciating release of sorrow and joy I dropped the bucket as the raft bound from the den in the bank over the ice towards me. I dropped to my knees and cried the tears of a heart broken mother as they swarmed me with their child like affection and mischievous play. I crawled to the bank and lay there crying until the raft had finished their meal. I asked them to remain safe and keep themselves from harm and stayed as long as my cold limbs would allow and left them playing on the ice. Walking back I praised Shelyn, thanking her for sparing them from harm, I promised to make what amends were possible for my deeds in the mornings Battle of Sandpoint and asked for her continued vigilance for the protection of the innocent. As I arrived at the bridge the relief column from Magnimar arrived. I approached the soldiers and was told to “STEP ASIDE!” Incensed I laid into what passed for their commander regaling our accomplishments despite the lack of help with a look of disbelief. Infuriated, I spied Rikert along the path and called him to, “Relieve me of this nuisance so that I may see to my other duties!”
After returning the pail I went to the Rusty Dragon Inn in all my inglorious splendor and battle roughness and sat down to eat a hot meal in the warmest part of the room! I informed Lady Ameiko of Annies demise and requested her assistance in providing Annie with any formalities specific to the Tian people for her funeral. Surreptitiously I asked for five pieces of paper, ink, quill, sealing wax and a hot bath! I retired to my room and stowed the Scarnetti letters with Annies gear, gathered a comfortable change of clothes, a towel and made my way to the tub. Removing the chill from my bones and the battle filth from the exterior I dressed and made my way back to my room. I took my clothes and towel to the lady hafling help and asked if she would see to the removal of the stink, for which I offered a generous payment. I collected a tray of mugs filled with mead and cloistered myself in my room to put pen to paper. Half way through my second mug I found my muse! Crafting three letters in an identical fashion I threatened
“…. to expose all crimes, conspiracies and responsible party’s related to the resent arson of the mill unless the payments usually made by the architect to the minion are redirected in a manner benefitting the community in which this author prescribes! A benevolent pension fund WILL BE created in the latest amount and frequency the extortionist demanded regularly to benefit the widows, orphanage, and Sanitorum that WILL BE presented and dispensed by the head clergy of the Sandpoint Chapel in perpetuity.” The conclusion issued this warning. ” You are duly warned that should ANY subjugation or harm befall the beneficiaries, clergy, city officials or myself, in an untimely manner, the letters will be delivered to proper authorities who WILL see justice done! DO NOT DALLY ABOUT!!!”
This would do fine for starters! I finished the second mug, sealed them and stowed them with Annies gear. After the third Mug I laid down for a nap until the call came informing me one of our prisoner giants had finally awoken.
On my way to the giants I collected two of the letters I had penned and went to the Cathedral. There I requested to speak with Father Zantus. I asked for his assistance which required the utmost confidentiality and assured him it was for the betterment of the city. He agreed. I then asked him to have my penned letters delivered anonymously a week hence. I assured him a second time of my good intentions but stressed the need for complete anonymity on both our parts and a trusted delivery method as I didn’t wish as I wouldn’t think he would, for anyone to know the benefactor or their source. He agreed again. I offered a generous tithe and excused myself to the interview and interrogation of the giants.
I entered the room where both giants had been secured. Dour and grumpy was his countenance. I ordered food brought to us and started to make conversation which turned out to be one sided. At any rate Rikert and I offered him food and beer, as we ate our fill and finding the conversation lacking, we departed. I retired for good after that, waking to a day of service and funerals, all of which I attended. Come dinner, we had a second go at a bit of conversation, this time both of them were coherent, but the night ended the same as the last. The third day was exactly the same. On the fourth day it was apparent they had partaken of some of the food left behind and the ice was broken that night, but briefly and late. On the fifth day, following Annies funeral, we had a meeting of the minds. The larger of the two spoke for both offering to part with the information we requested for guaranteed safe passage out and away from Sandpoint to which we immediately agreed! We found that they were a scouting force sent to procure a stone from the old light that their leader could “read” somehow! We also learned a force of seven TRIBES of giants was massed by the leader Mockingbird…no…MOCKED-BY-RAIN!!...no, oh yaa, “Mocmurian” a black spell casting giant of old at the hold named Junkers-lips…no…Jump-n-trips…nooo…Jerkin-…DAMMIT!! I don’t recall, but it’s on the Storval Plateau and this bodes ill indeed!! There was more but this was the meat of it. They shared their shame at failure in their mission and had no desire to return to the clans. I convinced them it would go a long way in securing their guaranteed safety if they were to stick around for a week and effect repairs of damage caused during the fight and they agreed!!! HUZZAAAH!!! My inner celebration was extremely short lived as the talkative giant stood bursting his chains. EGADS!!! I guess he tired of sitting and wanted to stretch his legs, but that nearly made me tinkle! I informed all the Officials of our accord with the giants and all agreed to the arrangements. I returned to the Rusty Dragon Inn and made for the bath. The last night about town and all our towns people buried, it was time to honor Annie.
The mood had been sullen and gray all week. Now the mood had improved and people were ready for some levity. I primped, making the best Tian look as was possible with the pigments and paints Xandu had provided. With my hair slicked back in a ponytail and dressed again in my leather outfit I waltzed down with Annie’s Tian sword, the largest of the pair, placed it on the table. I ordered a round of Old Laws for the troupe and stood on our table. Calling the Inn’s attention I produced Annie’s blade. I told the story of Annie’s life at least the parts she had shared with me. I told the story of her deeds with our troupe, especially the deeds on the early morning battle just a few days prior. I told how we fought together and how she had stepped into battle at a moment which had saved my life. I paused as my voice cracked with emotion. I shared stories of others who had sacrificed themselves selflessly for their friends, family, and brothers’ in arms and raised a toast in their memory. I returned the blade to its scabbard and called Lady Ameiko to me. I knelt on the table and lifted the blade over my bowed head presenting it to the Inn in memory of Annie. I respectfully requested to perform in memory of the fallen, to which she agreed. I waited for her leave to begin a song. I sang the popular local songs and waited to dance until the mood had lightened with the passing of time and participation with the music. I sang and danced later than usual and spent more time than normal with the locals and regulars to the Inn.
After the performance I sat in the candle light of my room and sang hymns to Shelyn. I packed my gear and added what little Annie had accumulated. I laid out my clothes for the trip to Magnimar and began to plan my trip to a “T”. I slipped into the ether of the dream world and slept the best I had since the last time we left Sandpoint to solve a problem in our time. I rose to the sweet sound of Uther’s chime and slowly crawled from my warm bed. The crisp cool room gradually embraced me causing a single violent shiver as I stretched out on the bed, legs folded in and turned to the right. I reached for the wall and squeaked at the apex of my stretch. I hopped up and quickly wrapped in a blanket and dressed in my clothes for the trip. I thawed the water in my basin with a minor effect and washed with warm water. I collected my gear and went down to breakfast where it was decided Xandu would take Lynn, Rikert, and Haybert to Magnimar by magical means. An experience I had no desire to repeat just yet, but took the opportunity to remind Xandu to remember to take Ramad’s compass…for luck. The rest of us struck out on foot and would meet with them two days hence.
Blackmail? Hee! Moxie, you sneaky girl!
I must admit I'm not sure how this revelation will play out with my group. I mean, we have a bastard son of the Scarnetti clan who's been badmouthed by them and would gleefully take them for everything they've got, but we've also a rather stern and nun-like halfling cleric who'd probably insist turning it over to the Law. (I'm not sure how the half-orc or the Jadwiga sorceress would respond. And Essanne would likely go with the majority ruling.)
Useplanb? For a game where you didn't come prepared, this seems to have played out nicely. Sometimes (especially right after a huge battle) it's nice to just defrag.
Breathe, relax, nobody’s attacking you right now. You have your own things to do. Find a quiet spot, think. The impending doom of a giant army has made me want to figure out how best to improve my equipment and or gear.
After this last giant attack, standing toe to toe with a giant isn’t a good idea, I definitely don’t want to be grappled, I’d be in trouble, so that’s a thought. I don’t have the armor or strength to go toe to toe without my magic, so either more spells or more defense or both. Trying to find the best combination is a challenge. Some of the others knew what they wanted and why, I hadn’t given it much thought as I’d been fairly busy. But now the time was there. Two days on the road to Magnimar to think and make decisions. Some things had been decided already, we apparently were going to the stronghold of the head giant to try and kill him. Well that being the case, I know I’m going to go get right with my goddess, definitely going to be some wine and women.
I improved my armor, but was told we didn’t have as much time in town as I’d hoped so I couldn’t get the armor that I wanted, oh well. Nothing comes easy. I purchased some things to have on me in case I have life force stolen from me.
My goddess isn’t known as the kindest, but I believe it’s worth the investment. I feel refreshed and rejuvenated, but apparently I’m not any smarter, I’m still going to the giant stronghold. If I survive this next battle, I’ll get some things I want, one way or another.
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Xandu is a Varisian cleric of Desna. A free spirit that wondered into a town just to see the opening of a temple to his God, Desna. The Butterfly Festival.
We started our characters with a 20pt build so our stats for the most part are above average but not high by any means. Low to med teens for most of us, some stretched one or more attributes at the cost of others I did not. We are all tenth level. I read some of your posts about summoning in creatures to help us but as our core group is so large that by adding more to melee would slow the combat to a crawl. It’s already slow enough because table talk gets so loud while it’s others turn that both the DM and others get frustrated quite often.
I like playing Xandu as a person that wants to help but doesn’t always know the best way to do it. He’s not a hero in his mind. He’s not been trained to be a priest, Desna talks to him while in prayer or after he prays while he sleeps. He loves to travel and is fascinated with Moxie and Ameiko (they‘re called crushes for a reason). He enjoys Simons “fatherly” advice on how to behave in combat because it is so foreign to him. At the start of the game he could fight as well as the others but as we advanced it became clear that he was not able to give out or take damage like the others. As he loves his Varisian outfits he has not used much armor. I know there are ways to make a fighting cleric, I’ve played them before, Xandu is not that kind of a cleric. He prays to find his way in the world and loves to help others as he walks his path.
Sandpoint has become his home, something he’s never had before, with all it’s ties and strings attached. Obligations that come with having a place to call home are worth it to him because when he does get to be in Sandpoint he’s connected to everyone there. They even look up to him (he’s uncomfortable with that part) and they trust him. He looks up to Father Zantus even though he has surpassed him in level. He looks to Sheriff Hemlock and Mayor Deverin for guidance. The people of Sandpoint are is his family. The Troupe (as Moxie calls it) are his friends. And this is his great adventure. Thanks for reading along.
LOL Tangent101, that video nailed it. At least that's how our barbarian-monk thinks of himself. hehe Even when playing a ninja-witch. And we will miss the fox too. I think we should keep it around. Alas we can't because we are already on our way to certain death.
Except that Annie/Flak's player HATES that movie.
Moxie Stats…. The hard numbers are on the profile but overall Moxie's, well pretty average but for Int and Dex. Smarts is naturally decent and Dex is magically augmented to the same level. She is a part time 6th level Rogue and 4th level Gunslinger and a full time performer. She has come to know and care for her troupe, some more than others whether they like it or not! Moxie has kept mementos of every member of the troupe lost collected from their personal items. She invests more than what is probably healthy in those she cares for. She is the only local resident of Sandpoint, and has come to take more interest in the community as she experiences just how dangerous the world really is.
She has lived her dream, with a crazy diverse group of people, rich, poor, nice, gruff, smart and dumb, not to mention the obvious ethnic and racial differences! This has been an experience of a life time she knows many will never have let alone survive! She is a witness to greatness and wants to share the deeds and events the troupe has accomplished with the world. Ultimately it is her goal to leave the world a happier place than what it has become. She longs to accomplish it through her performances. Unfortunately song and dance is more of a supplemental income than a steady one, and only so long as the body and age provide it as a lucrative option. So she looks to the future, for a girl has to earn her keep or strike out on her own and get her foot in the door to find a way to do it in a more “legitimate” and "acceptable" fashion. (sideways glance,wink,grin!)
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Down time at last!!
Brisket, Lynn, Sheldor, and I made the two day journey to Magnimar at a comfortable pace. We arrived and found initial lodgings in a moderate Inn. After a good rest I went to the Bazzaar of Sails with a purpose. I tracked down the Princess of the Market, Lady Sabriyya. I re-introduced myself and inquired on a few points of interest. I needed advice on acquiring a legal/business advisor for “legitimate” reasons, a scribe, an armorer, a silversmith, and a room with nice accommodations in the Lowcleft with a view of the harbor in a decent neighborhood for the district.
She graciously sent me away with a guide whom I provided with a generous gratuity at the culmination of our business. I procured the service of a “trustworthy” scrivener with knowledge in preparing legal petitions where I obtained official copies of the Scarnetti letters. The legal counsel and business advice was obtained at the temple of Abadar. There I requested help in acquiring the reconstruction and startup costs for the Sandpoint Tannery and Brewery, as well as operating costs and conservative, potential profits from said businesses. I made the request not so much as urgent, but I believe my earnest interest and desire were somewhat convincing of my intent to acquire them. I asked if financial arrangements could be made to acquire them for me while I was away and to send correspondence of any acquisition, or disposition in my name to Sandpoint, care of Ameiko Kaijitsu. I also contracted them to hold personal effects of a legal nature locked away in confidence. There with the temple were laid the original Scarnetti letters until they were needed, if they were ever needed and with me the only key to re-acquire them. I deposited a sum of money for their confidence in my affairs and tithed appropriately for their professional service.
Then my guide led med to a crusty looking armorers shop. I don’t think I would have been attended to in such a timely fashion or with such favor had my guide not accompanied me in on this trip. Some signs, head nodding or eye blinking were quickly exchanged and my business was tended to straight away. I asked for a functional grey pauldron, with a red scale leather spaulder and roundel backed with bear fur in a number equal to the surviving town guard, militia and Sheriff to be sent to the Mayor of Sandpoint with my handwritten note;” To the ever stalwart men of Sandpoint, best regards on your Victory! (signed) Sincerely, The Storm Guardians.”
Next we were off to the silver smith. I asked if she worked in items of apparel as well as table service and to my satisfaction she replied favorably with a spring in her step. She led med to her jewelry and she was indeed an accomplished worker of silver. I told her why I was placing the order first. It took no time for the reasoning to set in and I immediately felt comfortable with her. I requested she manufacture a shield broach with the symbol of a dragon, bear, and giant in smaller script surrounding a larger symbol of valor and the date of the battle. Each of these were to be presented to the widow(er), or orphan who lost their loved one in the battle. These were to be delivered to the Mayor of Sandpoint accompanied with another of my handwritten notes as well, reading; “May the valor of your beloved be forever remembered for their honorable sacrifice! (signed) Respectfully, The Storm Guardians.”
Then to my comfortable room. After parting company with my guide, I struck out on my own. This time to the Islet to acquire another trinket. I asked my chime maker to fabricate a three-locked box. I wanted three keys required to open it and a master key for it that would unlock them all by itself. The locks were to be within the box. I would retain the master key and needed the project completed within the week. The keys were to be delivered to the Mayor, Sheriff and Father Zantus individually in their own small stylish box. I penned a note for each that read. “Keep me safe, I am very important, if and when the time comes you will be informed and will understand. Do not speak of me to anyone until then!” When the box was finished I would deposit the scrivener’s official copies of the Scarnetti letters, my third copy of my letter that was delivered by Father Zantus, and my explanation of my coming into the knowledge, my actions, and the key to the original Scarnetti letters in the temple of Abadar in Magnimar. The box was to be crated and delivered to Master Quenk, with yet another note. “Brodert, hold this box in safe keeping at all costs! It is to be kept in a dark safe place until I return. I believe it to be trapped within in a highly proficient manner so please by all means DO NOT attempt to open it!! I will retrieve it upon my return, Thank you, Your friend, Moxie- P.S. Tell no one of it and your reward will be handsome!”
Now then, to real business, shopping, clothes, a bath, and a night in the Lowcleft district nightclubs. By day I spent most of the week shopping and refitting for the coming foray to the Storval Plateau and with her permission talking with Lady Sabriyya trying to learn her ways and observing her operation in action as she allowed. By night I was on the town making new friends and kissing a few now and then….(GRIN!)
Come the day before we were to leave I checked in with the armorer and silver smith and coordinated the delivery date as best as possible. I went to the Bazaar and ordered a delivery of food fit for a celebration, winter blankest and clothing. All to be delivered at the same time the armor and broaches should arrive with another letter explaining the armor, broaches and food to the Mayor, ending with,“Celebrate life, present the honors, love yourselves…and dance for me!! (signed) Love Moxie.” The next morning we met up after breakfast at the north-gate and began the next chapter in our adventure, "Shelyn protect us!"
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Rikert Krupt – Paladin of Iomedae
Following our decision to contact the Lord Mayor of Magnimar, I traveled magically with Xandu back to the city.
We arrived with no problems, and I quickly made contact with my family, the priestess at the church of Iomedae, and the captain of the guard in Magnimar to arrange for a meeting with the Lord Governor.
I told the story of the events in Sandpoint, and the information we had gathered in the aftermath to each of the three audiences.
The meeting with the Lord Governor included the guard captain, and two military officers in addition to myself. The news of the army of giants assembling at the Storval Plateau was a shock to all of them. They all showed concern about what would happen if a host of giants were to descend on Magnimar. Even the entire military forces of Magnimar would not be able to handle such a powerful opposing force.
While we looked at maps of the surrounding areas and they drew up battle plans to mount a defense, I explained to them that our plan was to travel as a small group and try to kill Mokmurian. We would travel quietly and quickly, and arrive unnoticed to make a surprise attack that cuts the head off of the snake.
My announcement seemed to catch all of them by surprise, and there was a moment of silence and shared glances between them before they gave their response. They discussed the plan and the possible alternatives, but came to the same conclusion we had already reached. There is no hope in attacking the giants head on. The cost would be too high, and the results far from certain. If they committed the entire army of Magnimar to the battle, they risked leaving the city unguarded against possible attack from rivals (i.e. Korvosa) who might seize the moment to try and capture Magnimar for themselves.
It was decided that the Storm Guard (as we have been labeled) should strike against Mokmurian and the leadership of the giant army, while the military marched to set up a defensive position near the base of the Storval Plateau in case we should fail. The city guard, and some reserve troops would be kept in Magnimar to guard against an opportunistic attack from Korvosa, or as a final line of defense if the other plans all failed to stop the giants.
After the meeting, I left with the guard captain and we discussed some small issues before I headed back to meet the rest of our group to finalize our plans and buy the supplies that will be needed for the journey.
May Iomedae bless this mission, as the future of this area depends nearly entirely on our success.
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** spoiler omitted **
Since you spoilered, I'll spoiler as well.
And honestly, I don't think apologies are in order. If you can write well enough that people can't tell your gender, you're an awesome writer. It's something to be proud of, not apologetic for. And yes, I'm a 40-something fella with a family that's been gaming since the DND boxed set, so we're not exactly all that different. :-P