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829557 No. 829557 ID: d36af7

An angel, a coward, a demon, a White Elf, a liar, a laborer, a saint, a siren, and a wizard walk into a bar. The barkeep says "Why the l̨̗̖͎̜͖̙̻͛̿͆̎͋ͯo̍̓ͭn̩͉͎̼͆g͚̦̙ͥ̎ͨͥ̎ face?" The demon replies "I can provide you with more than a hundred barrels of ale, sixty gallons each, over the course of the next week, if you, in return, stop asking such stupid questions." Soon enough they come to an agreement.

From Zelkor's Ferry, you can head upriver about 25 miles to Passholdt's border fort. If you're going by land, most people wait for good weather and a large group, then march the whole way to the fort in one day, so as to avoid the red bear. Dirt road turns to mud when it rains. Follow that tributary river (the channel which the ferry actually crosses) to the south and there's a lake, on the far side of the lake is Rook's Vineyard. We don't go there anymore. Downriver, it's about fifty miles to the old coast road, which continues as far north or south as anyone's ever cared to check.

North bank of the river and dozens of miles beyond, from here to the coast road, is marshy lowlands. Swamp trolls live there, and stilt-walker elves, and green-robed monks in decrepit cloisters atop the few rocky outcroppings. There are rumors of some ancient beast sleeping under the mire, able to swallow elephants whole.

Any other direction, forest. All kinds of monsters in the forest, but only three kinds of men. First kind is outlaws, meaning pathetic types on the run from their own mistakes, Most are decent enough, if you give 'em a bit of charity and remember to keep a hand over your purse. Not many survive more than a few weeks. Second is bandits, meaning hardened thieves and murderers who've made the forest their home. They'll take everything you have and afterward, if you're lucky, ransom you back to civilized folk naked and bereft but in the right number of pieces. Third type is those hunting the first two. Adventurers, bounty hunters, questing knights, whatever.

Wiki: http://tgchan.org/wiki/Please_do_not_Take_these_Organs
Patreon: https://www.patreon.com/user?u=4587981[/spoiler]
Expand all images
>>
No. 829565 ID: d36af7

Odo Bristleback, mayor, innkeeper
Amelia Bristleback, accountant, laundry, part-time gambler
Hazel-Eyed Tallie Bristleback, Amelia and Odo's daughter, serving wench, bondage expert & sadist for hire by the hour
Gumbel Bristleback, Tallie's younger brother, cook, part-time carpenter
Igor Bristleback, Tallie's older brother, deaf/mute, spacey and skittish, stablehand, unties knots, part-time masseuse
Vort Bristleback, distant cousin and half-orc but could be Igor's twin, stablehand, no 'inside voice,' calm in a crisis
Entire family is wereboars. Open secret among other residents, not shared with outsiders. That's why all the bandits leave Zelkor's Ferry alone, despite it's lack of formal protection from any major military.

Ysbel Cloudpine, serving wench, saint lookalike (apart from blond rather than green hair)

Big Morgan Smith, blacksmith, wagon repair, part-time armorer but not for anything fancy
Deslena Smith, pottery, chicken ranching

Rasmus Pye, general store, merchant guild contact
Meregan Pye, inventory control, clothing repair

Ulman Dark, Unlicensed Necromancer, your one-stop shop for no-questions, no-promises, cash-up-front medical care
Kanndra Dark, bounty hunter, away on business most of the time

Gutmark the ferryman, spends most of his time fishing
Adebrin the fishwife, meat preservation expert, gnoll liaison

Kalgor the dwarf, chaplain, librarian, gemcutter, relics appraised & some curses broken, spirit diplomacy, weddings, funerals

Captain Skorma, guard commander, medium infantry
Officer Bodi, guardsman, medium infantry
Officer Eldeshi, guardswoman, medium infantry
Officer Hanesh, guardsman, medium infantry
Officer Shuma, guards??man, medium infantry
Officer Taom, guardsman, medium infantry
Distant professional courtesy to everyone but each other.
Any given time, there's one guard at the gate, one on patrol, two awake but off-duty (usually either sparring out on the grass, maintaining their gear in the barracks, or relaxing in the Black Boar Inn's common room) and two sleeping.

Notable nearby people and groups:
Tethru Dark, moss troll, Kanndra's adopted child and Ulman's apprentice, reads future in own entrails, set up in Yorgala's old cottage

Khadeehya's Pack, gnolls camped out on a hill two miles south of the ferry, middlemen for ransoming captives back from bandits

Tall Jack Rat's bandit gang, bunkered inside the Mouth of Doom, trying to regroup after a devastating and seemingly unprovoked attack by some sort of forest guardian named Drusilla

Niknak Tarbucket and affiliated kobolds, also inside the Mouth of Doom but mobile, regarded as relatively harmless apart from pranks, inordinately fond of fresh bread
>>
No. 829583 ID: 3abd97

>An angel, a coward, a demon, a White Elf, a liar, a laborer, a saint, a siren, and a wizard
The as of yet unnamed deva, Geoffrey, Nistamatsin, Kent, Wendy, Pog, Rhea?, Azure, and... Helen?

Not sure where Malkov went, and I'm guess Isaiah isn't walking yet.

>various directions
Which way is the Mouth of Doom?

>what do
Well, we're in a safe area, and presumably everyone has had a chance to rest. Shall we process level ups?
>>
No. 829585 ID: d36af7

Vehicle is shaped somewhat like an elongated d10 or faceted egg, roughly forty feet long and twenty feet in diameter at the widest point. The outer hull is a translucent crystalline material. Inside is partitioned into rooms by leather panels held taut at the edges with zigzagging elastic cords. Machinery is rods and camshafts and crooked crystalline cross-braces, with fittings of ivory and bronze. There are eight internal sectors. Top hatch leads through an airlock into the control room, operated by the Pilot and Navigator. sitting in adjustable and ergonomically padded chairs with a jagged crystalline spike protruding from the headrest, while maintenance on the controls is performed by the Congruity Knot Detangler. Other two sectors in the fore third of the craft are the frontal segment of the main axial spire, and a 130-cubic-foot chunk of opaque crystal (which seems to be the power source) maintained by the Abstraction Torturer.
Middle third of the craft also has three sectors: the central segment of the axial spire, life support systems maintained by the Plumber, and a prison with enough cages, beds, shackles, and sanitary facilities for eight average-sized elvenoids, maintained by the Air Loom Operator. There's a second airlock leading down from the prison, which seems unlikely to see much use with all the ground in the way. Maybe if the whole vehicle had rolled over, or was skimming against the ceiling of a cavern?
Aft third has only two sectors: the rear segment of the axial spire, and a much larger horizontal airlock which also functions as three tons of cargo space, and possibly a repair bay for smaller vehicles, though none are present. Cargo handling, airlock upkeep, and maintenance of any such small craft are handled by the Robster.
Axial spire is maintained by the Crystal Polisher, Phase Crystallizer, and Gloam Unphaser working together.
Traversing ladders and crawlspaces to move from one sector to another takes about 20 seconds, or 40 seconds if it's not in the same third. Cycling two people at once through either of the smaller airlocks takes about 10 seconds under ideal conditions, or several minutes if you follow the decontamination procedures properly, which is fairly unpleasant for any exposed skin.

None of you know how to do any of those jobs listed in capital letters and bold, all of which are necessary for safe long-term operation. There are two ways to learn: the fast exciting way is you ignore the instructions, just grab the controls and try to make it go. Upside is you can get results in a matter of minutes, downside is there's a significant chance they won't be the results you want, and a non-zero chance that something expensive will explode. Uses rules from the GURPS core book for experimenting with alien/futuristic artifacts.

The slow way is basically Call of Cthulhu tome-of-madness research. Unless you're somehow already pen-pals with one or more of the deranged albino mole people, or have access to some sort of translation magic, you'll need to start by learning their language.
Lt.Cmdr. Jalkaren Blessed-Is-The-Light, on detached duty from the 77th Celestial Signal Corps, is willing to provide a crash course in Derro linguistics which takes exactly one week: 100 hours studying, 42 hours sleeping, 14 hours in meditation and prayer, the remainder free for eating, bathing, socializing with non-participants, etc. All the Messenger asks in return is that such students contribute to the cleansing and restoration of the abandoned hospital near Zelkor's Ferry to the best of their ability for a year and a day or until that endeavor is complete, or dedicate themselves to some other equivalently virtuous and holy purpose for an equivalent period of time, and also one personal favor to be specified later. (Training in various other subjects is also available, at that same rate of one future favor per week of intensive study, plus broader oath to use what you learn for the greater good.)
It would alternatively be possible to learn from other people who have already received such training, or by directly studying the text and diagrams scrawled or tattooed on every interior surface of the subterrene and deciphering it by working from first principles, but that takes longer, and cracking the code the hard way would require some knowledge of the academic study of languages to have any chance of success. Fortunately the famed sage Deros Frist is in town, though not for long, and seems to have accidentally brought part of his library with him. Perhaps he could be persuaded to lend out an introductory textbook on linguistics.

After learning the basics of the language but before picking up any real technical skills, you need to wrap your head around some basic alien concepts - Hore, Nistamatsin, and anybody else with both a higher-tech background than is common in the setting AND some degree of violent insanity gets a free pass on this stage. For everybody else, it takes a month with a teacher, or two months without, if you're spending eight hours a day 25 days a month in meditation, study, and self-inflicted waking nightmares. Proportionately longer if you're not working quite that hard.

After that, you can finally start learning practical subterrene operation-and-maintenance skills. Pick a crew position to focus on, and spend at least one day (more is better, no real upper bound beyond how long you can afford to live off your savings while fooling around near the dock) familiarizing yourself with it. Once every position besides Pilot and Navigator has at least one person with adequate proficiency (I'll let you know when that happens, probably several months), it becomes possible to instead study as a generalist, learning the simpler parts of every job by rote but missing out on deeper technical knowledge. Good for filling in on maintenance duty when someone's out sick, not so good for actual repairs.

Once you've got all that figured out, turn the key and go, the vehicle can swim through soil or rock like a fish through water. All-out, it's as fast as a tireless horse: 25 miles in an hour, thousands in a week. The strategic value of being able to enter or withdraw from dungeons at arbitrary points, rather than only known surface entrances can hardly be overstated. Then there's the commercial value of moving a wagon-load or two of cargo through blockaded and/or impassable terrain at conventionally unreasonable speeds, or military applications which mostly boil down to 'pointing at siege engineers and laughing.'
>>
No. 829597 ID: d36af7

>>829583
>Not sure where Malkov went,
Deliberately ambiguous, since Malkov's status as an ally is also somewhat up in the air after the various horrific, non-consensual body mods. As a monk with undead slaying powers, he could somewhat fit the 'saint' title. Or that could reflect Wendy's miracle-working, with Helen as the 'liar' and Deros Frist as the 'wizard.' Mostly I just wanted to start off with a three-men-walk-into-a-bar joke.

Speaking of which, Nistamatsin & friends have their collective hotel bill paid up for at least a week thanks to booze conjured from the charm bracelet. There's enough that they're having trouble finding places to store it all, although by popular demand some of the barrels have been stacked in such a way as to enclose (and block the view of) that silver statue which appeared in the center of town while nobody was looking, There's enough slack in the schedule to test two of the other charms during that time as well.
>guess Isaiah isn't walking yet.
Correct. Wendy has, or can make, necessary spare parts, Kent knows mechanical engineering, Big Morgan is an adequate armorsmith, Ulman Dark knows his way around necrolithography, and Geoffrey's new "locksmith" telekinesis can substitute for rare tools, so full repairs might not be cheap or easy but are at least possible.
>Which way is the Mouth of Doom?
"Two-hour walk just about straight south. Er... meanin' no disrespect, ma'am, but maybe three hours on them short legs a' yours. Big stone face in the side of a hill, y'can't hardly miss it. Watch out for bad air down there, I hear some folks just fall asleep and never wake up."
>>
No. 829642 ID: 094652

rolled 4, 3, 1 = 8

Azure gives Pog a series of the biggest hugs her small frame can muster, but she can tell something happened to Pog... Well, he's alive, she's a medic, and they've got time enough to figure it all out.

Azure has learned a simple lesson in attempting to barter with or deceive those you owe a great debt to, or those who suspect you thoroughly: DO NOT. Nistamatsin has broken her from prison and saved Pog's life, and this time Azure intends to pay her life debts with proper service.

But first? Money. While the others are planning the expedition into the Mouth of Doom, Azure will secure funding the old-fashioned ways. Azure has three main professions, with skill rank priorities in the following order: courtesan, merchant, and architect. Pog has two professions: Miner and Soldier. Azure will help Pog find a simple temp job, then attempt to rake in the money.

Rolling for Azure, while Pog will take 10.
>>
No. 829668 ID: af6e04

rolled 2, 6, 4 = 12

Alrighty, this is a lot to take stock on.

I'll probably need a more friendly face, unless everybody in Zelkor's Ferry is fine with demons (I guess it's possible, since they're fine with wereboars). Might be able to find someone out in the forest who's adequately unrepentent. Until then I'll just have to borrow from my companions.

Aside from that, I guess first order of business would be to replenish my mundane inventory items. New crown of nails, seek out some cinnamon incense, and maybe some clothes if I have the time. Also experiment with the brass balm to see what happened to it and
>There's enough slack in the schedule to test two of the other charms during that time as well.
try to figure out what our charm bracelet does.

>Isaiah isn't walking yet
We'll need all hands on deck to get this subterrene running, and from what I've been told about his powers he'll make an excellent navigator. So I'll make it a priority to get him up and about.

And speaking of the subterrene, I'd love to just take it for a joy ride but proper training seems like the way to go. Now we just have to settle on who will undergo this training and who has no interest in The Quest for the Magic Sword and The Quest for Nistamatsin to Not be Stabbed by Said Magic Sword. Funds are probably important for securing help, so might get Kalgor to appraise our magic items. No idea how we're going to find a buyer around here.

So with Nistamatsin, Isaiah, Geoffrey, Kent, Wendy, Rhea, Helen, and Azure that's eight out of ten required crewmembers (Pog's probably not going anywhere near any of the working bits of this thing). That's assuming everybody sticks around, and we'll probably want some backup technicians and crewmembers as well. So we'll need to recruit some more hands. Any of the mortals here in Zelkor's Ferry seem willing to leave their life behind for adventure? Nistamatsin can offer living requirements, free training, and future employment opportunities as well as a small amount of land ownership in his new kingdom.

>bad air
Any way we can do some research on this and figure out how to protect ourselves? Any word on what we can expect in the Mouth of Doom?
>>
No. 829741 ID: 3abd97

rolled 5, 1, 1 = 7

Right, character development stuff while level up mechanics are pending.

Rhea's very enthused about what's going on. Oh, she didn't mind helping Mode map things to pay off her debt in Passholdt, and she was enjoying her time in town in between that (so much to see in surface cities! All the different kinds of people, and faiths, and so many kinds of food! to learn about and... the sun... oh, um, got distracted there) but now she's been invited on a divine mission to help rebuild some kind of hospital. And an angel and a demon are working together to lead the group! It must be very important indeed to have brought those two together.

Unless they're together for some other reason. ...they're not a couple, are they?

Rhea's quite pleased to see Geoffrey again, and glad that her prayer saw him safely off the chessboard after all, and all the way to the surface at that! Did you know he was the first human she met? (She's either politely ignoring, or failing to notice, Geoffrey's unease at their reunion).

The reunion with Azure's a little more awkward. Last time they were together Rhea drowned. And. Um, weren't you still in jail?

Nist...a...met, mister Nista is a little weird with his lack of face. And clothes. But his heart seems like it's in the right place (assuming demons have hearts) if he's committed to a goblitarian effort like this.

Can Rhea talk to the fire in his spear?

>Lt.Cmdr. Jalkaren Blessed-Is-The-Light
Rhea's thrilled to meet an angel, and enthusiastically introduced herself at the first opportunity.

What god do they work for / where are they from?

>or have access to some sort of translation magic
Could we have Mode map the inside of the Sub-te...r... the sub with all the symbols, scan the tablet, and display a translation of everything on the canvas? She's good at changing the languages in books! Then someone could write it down, or copy the image with magic, that's how we were making maps in Passholdt.

Or if we're lucky, maybe this sub is like those metal bugs Mode mentioned and she can connect to it. Or maybe there's another fire spirit in the sub Rhea can talk to.

>seek out some cinnamon incense
Rhea has some (worn in her hair), and knows how to make more, but she's confused why he wants any. That's not good for demons, you know.

>>829585
A boat that sails through the earth seems much more sensible than the dangerous water-traveling variety. Um. None of those jobs really sound like "ship's cook". Won't people on the sub need to eat?
>>
No. 829756 ID: d36af7

>>829642
>simple temp job
>architect
No new construction going on in Zelkor's Ferry at the moment, though Odo does agree to give the Youngmason family right of first refusal if he gets enough business to justify expanding the inn further.
>miner
Not much call for deep excavation on riverbanks. Tends to flood.
>soldier
Lots of out-of-work soldiers these days, what with the big war being over. He could chop firewood, maybe? Unskilled-labor rates, but it's by the pound, not by the hour, so if he can do the work of six men he'll get paid accordingly.
>courtesan
Locals seem to be relatively satisfied with their sex lives, or at least not dissatisfied and rich enough to be shopping for alternatives. Deros Frist says he's "not into feathers." Lt.Cmdr. Jalkaren Blessed-Is-The-Light, as a transcendently beautiful supernatural being, has never needed to pay for sex and seems confused by the concept. She would be willing to offer physical intimacy as a form of comfort and succor, or for mutual pleasure, but procreation or any redistribution of material wealth (other than what's directly necessary for her mission) would violate her current standing orders.
>merchant
>rolled 4, 3, 1 = 8
Azure finds that elaborate crossbow which she thought was lost and destroyed, as well as her own (well, a previous incarnation's) severed head floating in a jar of wood alcohol. She's able to describe distinctive markings on both, the family resemblance is obvious, and Rasmus Pye heard about her mysterious escape from Passholdt's POW camp through the merchant-guild grapevine, so he readily acknowledges the items as having been stolen from her and returns them free of charge, asking only for a commemorative autograph as the price of the glass jar itself. Her favorite pair of earrings are still in there, too, along with some nice hairpins and a solid gold tongue stud. If she could get to some town big enough to have a proper commodities marketplace, that jewelry might be worth just enough to get into the buy-low/sell-high game, work her way back up from there.
>>829668
>unless everybody in Zelkor's Ferry is fine with demons
They think you're weird and disgusting, but the Messenger vouched for you and you handed out a LOT of free beer. I'd characterize the overall attitude as "wary tolerance." Might not get the friendliest service, but you're not going to be chased off with torches and pitchforks until somebody can prove specific wrongdoing. Even then, might get a chance to explain yourself and/or make reparations. Nobody's in a hurry to call the glowing winged lady with the tablet and sword a liar, at least not where she might hear.

>someone out in the forest who's adequately unrepentent
Every single bandit, almost by definition. Bit of a dilemma, though: intact, speech-capable heads are redeemable (strictly in the ten-cent-soda-can sense) for bounties, since they can be interrogated via http://www.d20pfsrd.com/magic/all-spells/s/speak-with-dead , and live bandits are worth somewhat more, but supernaturally unidentifiable bodies can't be turned in for bounties alive OR dead since, by definition, there's no way to be sure it's the right guy.

Good news is, hunting bandits in or reasonably near the Mouth of Doom doesn't count as getting side-tracked from the quest, since it's a legitimate way to raise money while simultaneously eliminating potential threats to the larger project. Imposing The Law on wicked men who thought themselves beyond it's reach is also a virtuous act in and of itself, at least as far as the senior leadership of the 77th Celestial Signal Corps is concerned.

>experiment with the brass balm
Going to test it on healthy tissue, or an actual wound? And on who?

>figure out what our charm bracelet does
Yet-untested charms appear to be a steel knife (or possibly sword), a brass birdcage, a narrow ivory cylinder with fluted ends and a single line scored down it's length, a dun-colored spiral with knurled texture, and a pair of parallel black rods with three crossbars connecting. Pick two of those to test. Kalgor could identify all the details without experimenting, but he doesn't work for free, and isn't all that impressed with the quality of the ale, so you'd need to come up with actual money.
>replenish my mundane inventory items. New crown of nails, seek out some cinnamon incense, and maybe some clothes if I have the time
Beer-barter is good enough to pay for all this stuff, though, including a plain tunic, loincloth, and enough of a knitted scarf or hood (which may have originally been planned as a tea cozy) to cover most of your face.

>Any of the mortals here in Zelkor's Ferry seem willing to leave their life behind for adventure?
Not while you're smiling at them, no. However, getting all of any single player's current active characters blackout drunk would provide both a bit of XP (since it's fun AND dangerous) and an opportunity to introduce new characters per the established rules, though they'd be starting down inside the Mouth of Doom, rather than the Bloodmist Labyrinth. You could also, OOC, try recruiting additional players by various means. Conceivably a new character could start out already knowing at least some of the relevant subterrene skills.

>Pog's probably not going anywhere near any of the working bits of this thing
Even if you wanted him to, he's too big. Getting him inside without surgical dissassembly would need to start with a couple thousand cubic feet of earth-moving just to access the rear hatch. You'd also want to be careful he didn't mis-target that excavation and start carving a hole in the crystalline hull. Granted, he's good at mining, and Azure knows enough applied geometry and surveying to check for that kind of thing, but, yeah, probably not worth it.

>research on protection from bad air
Azure knows a fair amount about how to design buildings to avoid producing such effects in the first place, but not as much about mitigation once they've begun. Pog has dim recollection of some safety lecture about bringing a pretty bird along, but figured Azure counts as that.

Kalgor knows the several "damps," and different sorts of mold and slime, the varied viscosity or even personality of darkness in the deep places, all as well as any self-respecting middle aged dwarf, but, again, he doesn't work for free, and explaining the intricate mysticism of cave-lore in such a way that you young whippersnappers will actually understand and retain it, well, that definitely counts as work.

Lt.Cmdr. Jalkaren Blessed-Is-The-Light can also provide training in those same skills, for future favors instead of cash up front, but is reluctant to accompany the expedition personally ("Dead mortals with recognizable body parts are within my power and authority to restore, but being slain myself would present a much greater inconvenience.") If you bring back a good enough map, though, she could teleport in, cast a spell to purify the air in a reasonably large room, and 'port back out. With the addition of a Class 3 or below Bag of Holding, and possibly improved comms (her whisperweb's range is 80 yards) she could bring fresh supplies, or extract wounded.

>Any word on what we can expect in the Mouth of Doom?
Moderately distorted secondhand accounts of the exploration from thread 3 would be available as tavern rumors.

>>829583
>Shall we process level ups?
Yes, More characters this time, though, some of whom got abandoned by one patron deity and then adopted by another, and they were all extracted and regrouped by a muddled Deus ex Machina rather than struggling together through a climactic boss fight, so I think some recap and asset review is in order.

Azure Youngmason is going around trying to seduce anyone who looks like they might have money to spare, while Nistamatsin is scraping together assets and half-baked plans for an expedition with a mania motivated by both greed and terror, so play some of that out with in-character dialogue among the PCs. Despite being nominal allies, you probably don't all know each other very well yet. What specific first-circle spell effects does Wendy have, or want?
>>
No. 829762 ID: d36af7

>>829741
>Can Rhea talk to the fire in his spear?
Yes, but only when the cap is off. Sort of an old-man-on-the-mountain vibe. This is a flame which has been burning continuously since before Aguinbreke hatched. It has seen kingdoms - entire continents! - rise and fall. This is a weapon which was forged to pierce and consume the heart of a titan, and in that task it did not fail. Nothing since then has been of much concern, by comparison.

>Could we have Mode map the inside of the Sub-te...r... the sub with all the symbols,
Yes.
>scan the tablet,
Alright so far...
>and display a translation of everything on the canvas?
Nope. Mode can see the symbols just fine, display them, rearrange for easier viewing or cross-reference, even interpret them one at a time phonetically, but trying to parse complete sentences triggers a... well, exact technical details aren't easy to explain, or even all that relevant. Point is, it's a dangerous disease, made out of words and pictures rather than pustules and miasma.

> Or maybe there's another fire spirit in the sub Rhea can talk to.
There's an earth spirit in the power core. She can't talk to it, but can tell it's not happy. There's something... almost like a fire spirit inside the air loom the same way Mode is in the music box. It's responsive, but not very lucid, and can't alter the air loom's function to any significant extent because all the important bits are slaved directly to manual controls.
>Won't people on the sub need to eat?
They'll need to drink and breathe, too, but the air loom spirit says relevant recycling systems are only rated to safely and sustainably handle eight average elvenoids. Theoretically, with perfect morale, a hangar bay crammed full of canned goods, and expert technicians redlining it all the way, maybe five or six months of continuous operation in a hostile environment without resupply. Realistically, you'd be pushing your luck after a few days.

>What god do they work for
"I am on a detached assignment."
>where are they from?
"Information about unit strength and position is classified as need-to-know."
>a couple
"Nistamatsin and I are not, have never been, and will never be, romantically involved with each other."
>>
No. 829804 ID: af6e04

rolled 4, 1, 6 = 11

>play some of that out with in-character dialogue among the PCs.
Hmm, where to start? From the beginning, I guess.

To greet all of his new companions, Nistamatsin adopts a proud and regal demeanor as he stands there, stark naked with a headless statuette in one hand and a big metal pole in the other. "The rewards for helping in this divine-chartered quest are surely immeasureable, but we can negotiate material payment options if you wish. I will speak to each one of you personally so that we can finalize agreements and you can tell me about all of your strengths, weaknesses, and darkest secrets."

>Nist...a...met, mister Nista is a little weird with his lack of face. And clothes.
"Do not call me 'Nista'. 'Nisin' or 'Nin' are fine."

>That's not good for demons, you know.
Nistamatsin compares the cinnamon incense to a delicious pastry. Good for you in some ways but bad in others. He says he can surely procure some more though, thanking Rhea for the offer.

>Um. None of those jobs really sound like "ship's cook". Won't people on the sub need to eat?
Of course, the demon explains, but space is very limited and we'll all probably need to pull double duties.

>They think you're weird and disgusting
More a point of pride than anything. Might want to put Azure in charge of recruiting though.

>Going to test it on healthy tissue, or an actual wound? And on who?
Myself. Just a small cut.

>However, getting all of any single player's current active characters blackout drunk
Kinda tempting, but I'm really not too interested in controlling five characters.

>Pog is too big
This presents some problems if he's coming to the dungeon with us. Will have to think this over.

>"Nistamatsin and I are not, have never been, and will never be, romantically involved with each other."
Nistamatsin points out that he did win the heart of a very fair and virtuous heroine.

Question about the sub I forgot to ask. Is there any particular reason we can't write our own instructions in low draconic after a couple of us have learned to read them?
>>
No. 829805 ID: af6e04

>But his heart seems like it's in the right place (assuming demons have hearts)
This gives Nistamatsin pause. There must be something moving all that blood around?

>Favors
What do these favors usually entail? Nistamatsin will ask for examples.

>a dun-colored spiral with knurled texture
>pair of parallel black rods with three crossbars connecting.
Probably the rope and ladder. I'll try the ivory cylinder and the brass birdcage.
>>
No. 829855 ID: d36af7

>>829804
>Just a small cut.
It itches like crazy. You can almost feel something crawling around in there.
>Is there any particular reason we can't write our own instructions in low draconic after a couple of us have learned to read them?
Not that you're aware of.
>>829805
>What do these favors usually entail?
Retrieving or delivering an item, providing hospitality for no more than a month, making a single significant decision differently than you would otherwise be inclined to, something along those lines.
>ivory cylinder
A parchment scroll, pen, and small flask of ink.
>brass birdcage
A wind-resistant lantern, already loaded with a pint of oil and lit.
>>
No. 829927 ID: 3abd97

>Pog's too big to get inside the sub
If we did get the sub running, and wanted him as a passenger, could Lt.Cmdr. Jalkaren Blessed-Is-The-Light teleport him inside?

>Dead mortals with recognizable body parts are within my power and authority to restore
Can you replace eyeballs? Mode will need to eat, eventually.

>protection from bad air
Does Rhea know anything about this? I mean, she's no dwarf, but does live underground, the fires of the deep earth have fumes. Could fall under practical knowledge and/or blessings/warding offered by fire priests.

>translation Nope
Drat. Oh well, having all the directions scanned and rearrangeable makes them a lot easier to study, at least. And allows study away from the sub.

>it's a dangerous disease
Oh no! Is Mode okay?!

Learning a diseased language does not sound like a good idea to Rhea.

>"Nistamatsin and I are not, have never been, and will never be, romantically involved with each other."
Rhea's career as a shipper was even more short lived than her career as a more literal boat-traveler, and has ended with a similar crash.

>What specific first-circle spell effects does Wendy have, or want?
Did you mean someone else? Archivist's characters are pretty much consigned to npc-dom until/unless he returns.

>>829804
>rewards and payment
Rhea's somewhat confused why she would need to be paid to help tidy up a hospital. I mean, it's the right thing to do, and this is a divine mission she was magically called to! With a teleport and a demon and an angel!

I mean, what she really wants to do is master surface style cooking and get better at baking (we don't even have a proper pastry tradition back home, you know!). ...Mom would probably appreciate it if our Holy mission hurt Orcus some. Also Rhea's looking for some nice gesture to apologize to Philista with.

Learning an entirely new language (she's still working on mastering humish, here) and how to operate a complicated machine on the side sure seem like tasks worth asking some kind of payment, though.

>Nistamatsin compares the cinnamon incense to a delicious pastry. Good for you in some ways but bad in others.
With a small frown, Rhea expresses the opinion that perhaps Mr. Nin has confused pastries with [narcotics]. Last word in goblin.

>other PC/PC interactions
I feel like how Rhea deals with Helen, Wendy, and/or Kent is going to depend pretty heavily on how those characters react to her casually whipping out Mode and demonstrating the artifact when attempting to translate the sub. They all have a reason to take a strong interest, the way they express that (and how Rhea reacts to that) is gonna set the initial tone for their interactions.

>>829855
>A wind-resistant lantern, already loaded with a pint of oil and lit.
"Why hello there!" Is this a flame as old as the magic item, hidden unless activated (like the spear), or a brand new flame?
>>
No. 830027 ID: d36af7

>>829927
>If we did get the sub running, and wanted him as a passenger,
He could fit into the cargo space without difficulty. Anywhere else would be a tight squeeze, to say nothing of the risk of him breaking something you don't know how to fix.

>Can you replace eyeballs?
Lost to tragic accidents or honorable battles, yes. Not to facilitate someone's role as a food source or torture subject. Go ask Tethru, she doesn't have any problem with divinatory self-mutilation.

>Does Rhea know anything about this?
Yes. Personal wards for that kind of thing are a 1st circle effect. She can't just snap her fingers and fix the problem for a whole room, not yet at least, but she'd know basic symptoms and mundane countermeasures, and would be able to supplement that or maybe even provide longer-term solutions with ritual magic.

>Is Mode okay?
Yes. The interface altar-cloth's countermeasures are vigilant and thorough. If anything, it's conceivable the antivirus overreacted somehow, though she's not willing to strip off the informational equivalent of a plague doctor's mask and lick the inscriptions just to find out.

> Archivist's characters are pretty much consigned to npc-dom
Yep, that's the issue. I know just enough about 'em to be fairly sure they'd want to be elbow-deep in some of the current IC problems, but not enough to confidently say what specific actions they'd be taking.

> Is this a flame as old as the magic item, hidden unless activated (like the spear), or a brand new flame?
Very new. Burbling and mewling and flopping around like a kitten whose eyes haven't opened yet. Takes a few minutes just to get cromulent responses like "hello" or "feeding on an oily strip of fabric while surrounded by metal and glass." Names and pronouns might take an hour or more, with all those clever baffles regulating the airflow. You could accelerate the language acquisition process considerably by giving it something non-conjured to chew on, such as a bit of old worn-out boot leather or almost anything else that's been around a lot of different places and touched a lot of different things.

>Mom would probably appreciate it if our Holy mission hurt Orcus some.
The lieutenant-commander has reason to believe that agents loyal (or at least sympathetic) to Orcus were involved in the hospital's decommissioning, and such individuals may still be present in the ruins. This belief is supported by (though by no means exclusively founded on) a recording accessible in the very first room: >>/questarch/735622

>a demon and an angel
Have you looked up that fragmentary phrase, "kruzhili nado mnoj," to see what almost always comes immediately before and after it?
>>
No. 830148 ID: ee6e74

rolled 3, 3, 1 = 7

>>830027
Helen is distraught over being tossed back and forth like a tiny boat on a stormy sea without any warning or consent. This situation does seem favorable compared to her last one though. The demon may even be able to help with her curse, since he seems capable of ninth circle magic.

Helen will apologize to Sage Frist for burning his house down and mention that the two will probably laugh about this whole crazy incident in the future.

Further interaction with him will depend on how mad he is.

She's predictably fascinated by the subterrene and will eagerly ask Rhea for the opportunity to study Mode.
>>
No. 830978 ID: d36af7

I'm thinking mostly she's a 2nd level cleric, but Channel Energy works differently: it produces a blast of highly selective steam, which heals anyone in the area for whom two or more of the following conditions apply:
1) The subject is a fire elemental, water elemental, iron golem, or otherwise has a deep structural affinity for the energies involved
2) Subject's equipment includes a visible display of adherence to Rhea's faith (holy symbol, allied military uniform, etc.)
3) Subject has signed, and is abiding by the terms of, a contract of alliance or fealty to which Rhea and/or her mother are also signatories, at least one written copy of which still exists somewhere
4) Subject is a living goblinoid

If only one condition applies and the subject is not undead, her steam has no effect on the subject. It also generally has minimal effect on unattended, inanimate objects, unless they're unusually vulnerable to heat or moisture. If none of the conditions apply, or only one applies to an undead subject, channeled steam causes damage and usually leaves the subject dripping wet.
>>
No. 831007 ID: d36af7

>>830148
>apologize to Sage Frist for burning his house down
He manages a curt nod of acknowledgement, and says that he trusts her enough that if she'd been planning to do that much damage, he knows she would have been able to find some other method both more efficient and discreet.
>how mad he is
Fingers on his left hand are so tense and twitchy, it's almost like he's trying to break them without touching anything. He stomps off to the nearby inn and starts yelling like a tourist at whichever employee approaches him first. "¿Sprechen zie drak...? Ah, good. Do you know of a city called Passholdt? I have urgent... did you say days? On foot? So this river right here is the same... well then. A room for the night, please."
There's a clatter of coins on the counter and he stomps back outside.
>laugh about this whole crazy incident
Leaning in a little too close, he confides to Helen "I think the Norns are laughing at me already!" before breaking down in manic giggles.
>>
No. 831049 ID: 3abd97

>>830978
Yup, cleric is what I was thinking too.

The modified Channel Energy looks neat, and makes sense thematically, too.

As is, Maria, Azure and Isaiah might satisfy condition 1, and Hore satisfies condition 4?

Condition 3 seems like it could be satisfied party-wide if we wrote up some kind of basic contract or charter for the team. Condition 4 if the team carried some kind of identifying emblem as a uniform (comedy / tragedy mask bisected by a sword?) and was formally allied with mom's service, but I don't see the party co-leads going that route. Which would make the decision to display some kind of holy symbol an individual decision.

What are we thinking spell-wise? Thematically, I'd think her spell list would draw from things having to do with fire or food. Possibly hearth and home, diplomatic envoy, or language themed stuff as well. Bonus points for things with mundane utility (since a core character conceit by this point is she uses her ability to cheat when baking. Always the right oven temp).

Is there a prestidigitation variant that would make sense for her?
>>
No. 831081 ID: d10e29

rolled 2, 1, 5 = 8

>>831049
Kent is somewhat bewildered at the wirwind of events I still haven't finished reading up on that recently transpired, but they have managed to find Helen Nabot and her terribly interesting book, and in the presence of relative comfort and safety no less.

The upsides are this- Kent has suddenly been surrounded with a bounty of incredible feats of engineering and research, a dearth of companions who seem willing and interested in exploring said technologies, and is in a great position to start gather reputation and capital to pursue more lofty goals.

The downsides lie mostly in difficulties communicating, and the lack of a shared goal or common interest. We seem bound by circumstance, and willing to stick together to maintain access to each others resources in exchange for help on various projects, but are not similarly minded in long term goals. Additionally, there is so much to focus on and explore, it's hard for them to dedicate their attention to just one activity.

Kent will, in this order, work their way down a list of priorities:
1) Make introductions and establish who they may have difficultly communicating with. Pog and Rhea stand out, but perhaps I'm overlooking other characters
2) Politely ask for their charm braclet back. Nistamatsin has certainly made great use of it, and Kent approves, but would like to remains in possession of their valuable magical items, for obvious reasons. If anyone wants to use it however, Kent is more than happy to oblige, provided they ask nicely, and maybe bring them a cup of tea.
3) Test out another charm on the bracelet, provided there is time to do so without permanently damaging it. The black crossbars please.
4) Exchange notes with Helen; the sage would also be worth talking to, but seems to be in a bit of a fowl mood.
5) Privately try to contact the hitchhiking voice from the chessboard, and see if they can still cash in on that one question- namely, if it can provide insight into how one could safely operate the wondrous contraption Nistamastin has conjured.
6) Make acquaintances with the Angel, and determine if Kents self righteous quest to redistribute power through the redistribution of knowledge is at all of interest to the creature, and if so, chat a bit about strategies and see if it can provide insight or aid in any way
7) Sign a contract of allegiance with Rhea, in case they manage hurt themself playing with all these new toys. She seems like someone worth getting to know and be friendly with given her acquaintance with Mode, and holy powers. Kent is also happy to paint a holy symbol somewhere on their vestments in exchange for protection; they've paid lip service to a number of Dieties before, mainly the Storm Forge before, but prefer that their relationship with any greater powers be practical rather than one of devotion and worship.
8) Encourage Nistamatsin that they should both take the digger for a spin, and get a little hands on experience. Due diligence and hard studying must be met with equal measures of real life applications if one is to learn anything. Also, it's really, really cool and Kent is a bit giddy at the prospect of getting a first hand chance to see how it works.
9) Establish their goals as known to the group. Kent is obviously overjoyed at the opportunity to learn more, in general and about alien technology specifically. As such, they are more than happy to spend a year nearby fixing up a temple if others are also willing, in order to start the process of learning the inner workings of such a mechanism
10) Celebratory drinks anyone?
>>
No. 831085 ID: fc3fc0

rolled 1, 1, 1 = 3

Isaiah is quiet, reserved, and almost comatose. Having your body mashed to pieces and your greatest fears realized while you you are paralyzed and powerless to do anything is usually unpleasant. He does his best to stay within the group, as they don't seem to be banging down the door trying to kill him, and will try to get help from Kent (who obliges) and Wendy while he works on repairing himself. He really doesn't know what to about all the priests and clerics around, but feels too weak and exposed to do much prosthelytizing.
>>
No. 831108 ID: fc3fc0

As for level-ups, I'm not sure if my characters are eligible given my troubles participating recently. If they are though, I originally pictured Isaiah as a cleric, with his focus on the travel and death domains. I also considered him instead focusing on water as a character theme, considering his deity has an association with rivers. With Rhea already being a cleric, I don't know if I neccisarily want to double up though. Oracle and warpriest come to mind, and water is starting to look more beneficial to help safeguard against Rheas weakness. Any ideas or suggestions are welcome.

For Kent, I've got a picture in my head, but I'm not really sure what class archetype to fit them in. I was most interested in third party pathfinder classes, mainly the articifier and the machine smith, but I would like something to exemplify their roguish nature, to make break ins and heists easier. Maybe a trade off to get the focus rouges have on skills, in return for tailoring the other classes appropriately? Less of a focus on extra damage, and more a focus on extra skills, so Kent is less combat optimized, but very much a skill monkey.
>>
No. 831138 ID: d36af7

>>831081
>black crossbars
Pick a number no less than 1 and no greater than 12. Doesn't actually have to be an integer, though that would make things slightly easier for me.
>insight into how one could safely operate the wondrous contraption
Can't provide full instructions, but one future botch will be negated.
>redistribution of knowledge is at all of interest to the creature,
Very much so. By definition, that's what angels are all about.
>rolled 2, 1, 5 = 8
How about a week of training in the 'informal' but deadly-serious laws which dragons only discuss openly among themselves, or with gods of both pivotal strategic importance and proven discretion? Just the basics, enough to know what you can or can't get away with inventing.
>>831085
>greatest fears realized
>rolled 1, 1, 1 = 3
Isaiah's phobia of being outed as a construct and torn apart by an angry mob has been permanently reduced, though not yet eliminated. Current party members and Zelkor's Ferry residents won't count as potential threats for purposes of triggering the phobia, at least not until they've violated his trust somehow.
>>831108
>With Rhea already being a cleric, I don't know if I neccisarily want to double up though.
I don't think 'half-goblin fire-diplomat desert chef' and 'path-scrying cute shotaro ghost armor' are excessively similar, as character concepts go.
>travel and death
This http://www.d20pfsrd.com/classes/core-classes/cleric/domains/paizo-domains/repose-domain/ancestors/ seems like it might be a better fit than the actual Death domain.

>Less of a focus on extra damage, and more a focus on extra skills
The Escapologist archetype from Occult Adventures modifies trapfinding and replaces Uncanny Dodge with something a bit like Slippery Mind. The Anatomist archetype for alchemists trades off bombs for sneak attack. Maybe do the reverse of that, trade sneak attack for bombs? If the explosives can't be mass produced, scaled up, or used by anyone else, that's not something even the more paranoid tech-suppressing dragons would take exception to.
>>
No. 831188 ID: 3ceeb7

>>831138
Lets say 8!

A crash course is appreciated!

Changes to phobia also sound critically good. Seems appropriate as well, given that he's seen now at least these folk aren't actively rallying the guards and cornering him.

As for being distinct, I meant more in the technical sense- clerics, even with different domains have similar abilities. In that vein I was thinking perhaps a focus on water would help give them different abilities since rhea can't really do anything with water, it'll make a more significant difference in their abilities.

I'll need to read up on those classes for Kent but any sort of concrete definition of what abilities they might now possess would be appreciate, so I don't end up confused as to what and how like I was with maru
>>
No. 831205 ID: af6e04

rolled 1, 5, 4 = 10

>Politely ask for their charm braclet back.
Nistamatsin grins from atop his seat arranged from the barrels that were previously blocking the view of his beautiful statue. "The bauble is a group asset. Everybody who accompanied us through the Bloodmist Labyrinth can claim some degree of participation in its acquisition. I'll gladly give up my own personal claim to ownership if you offer your face as payment. You don't seem to be getting much use out of it anyway." He'll toss the bracelet to Kent though and give them permission to hold onto it until somebody else has use for it or we decide to liquidate it.

>Encourage Nistamatsin that they should both take the digger for a spin
"You mortals are so impatient! All in due time." Might have a better chance after he's had a few huffs of cinnamon incense.

>Establish their goals as known to the group.
Kent's goals are both noble and dangerous, which means Nistamatsin is glad to help further them. He knows of many Old Empire technologies but he's lacking in technical details. Might at least be able to set Kent down the right research path.

>Rhea's somewhat confused why she would need to be paid to help tidy up a hospital.
Nistamatsin makes it clear that the 'tidying up' will probably involve danger and violence.

>Condition 3 seems like it could be satisfied party-wide if we wrote up some kind of basic contract or charter for the team.
Nistamatsin produces a snarling shrieking noise at the word 'contract' and then says he'll consider it.

>some kind of identifying emblem as a uniform
Nistamatsin's slightly less apprehensive about this one. He asks if it's enough to put the symbol on when healing is required and then put it away afterwards.

>Celebratory drinks anyone?
Nistamatsin will go ahead and try to out-drink the entire tavern.
>>
No. 831247 ID: e9490d

>>831205
>the circlet is common property
Kent disagrees, and is unwilling to give up their face, but is willing to acquiesce to the claim under the condition that the spear and subterranean vehicle are also group property, and therefore not something Kent needs to ask permission or make a contr- er, let's say, an agreement to utilize.
>>
No. 831336 ID: 3abd97

rolled 1, 3, 2 = 6

>>831049
>She's predictably fascinated by the subterrene and will eagerly ask Rhea for the opportunity to study Mode.
As Helen seems polite and friendly, Rhea is more than willing to introduce her to Mode and allow Mode to show off a little. She'll cooperate with (non-invasive) study.

>>831081
>7) Sign a contract of allegiance with Rhea [...] Kent is also happy to paint a holy symbol somewhere on their vestments in exchange for protection
Rhea is pleased and surprised and more than willing to help supply Kent with an appropriate holy symbol.

>>831085
>He really doesn't know what to about all the priests and clerics around
I'm not sure if Isiah is currently awake enough to discus theology, but Rhea doesn't really see a conflict! In abstract, Mom's stuff boils down to being about home, while Hanspur's about the road. That's more complimentary than anything. Cities need connections and exploration for lots of things, and travelers need safe places to return to, or where they can depend on hospitality.

>I don't think 'half-goblin fire-diplomat dessert chef' and 'path-scrying cute shotaro ghost armor' are excessively similar, as character concepts go.
They are potentially similar in that one is pretty guileless and of short stature, while the other literally has the mind of a child. Plus there's divine-touched backgrounds in common. Isaiah might actually find Rhea one of the easier people in the group to relate to.

>>831205
>He asks if it's enough to put the symbol on when healing is required and then put it away afterwards.
Rhea shrugs. Seems a little disingenuous to her, but she's never tried this kind of thing before.

>Celebration
Rhea will see if she can talk Gumbel into letting her use the kitchen, and whipping something up some kind of treat for the group.
>>
No. 831338 ID: 3abd97

Whups, that first link to post should be: >>830148
>>
No. 831373 ID: d22dc0

>>831336
>I'm not sure if Isiah is currently awake enough...

Isaiah is as... unusual as usual, which Rhea is less familiar with than perhaps some of the others; while flame is a living, dynamic creature, Isaiah is cold, hard, steel- flame is warm, and comforting, and almost wraps around you, but Isaiah is distant, like an empty, abandoned room, telling you stories of it's past from far away, or perhaps like brushing against a ice-cold glass of water, covered in condensation and entirely unexpected, raising goosebumps and startling others. Likewise, their philosophies are diametrically different, and while not necessarily diametrically opposed, at points they do conflict, which he begins to express in a manner more quiet and reserved than normal.

"Rhea you... I do not know how I might react appropriately in this situation. I hope you will forgive me, and consider being more genial than I am currently, and as we are talking, I will take the time to express my feelings so that we may both gain a better understanding of them, to hopefully aid my cause. I have been under much duress recently; as you may see I.. well, perhaps it is best to phrase it more accurately now that I have been exposed as such, but my vessel is greatly damaged. I am incapable of fending for myself, and possessed by a great fear that at any moment, if not for the grace of Hanspur and those around me who choose not to extort my vulnerability, I will be forced to relive experiences from my past that trouble me to this day. When my current condition was inflicted upon me, while being almost entirely my own doing, I experienced something that I have trouble describing as anything other than that which is the closest match I have had to dying as a child. To put it more concisely, I have not been having a very "good" day.

To then address the matter of origin for our conversation, you and I live in our faiths very differently, and I feel if we are to understand each other, and reach a comfortable consensus as a group, a state I hope rather fiercely is possible, I must clear the air of my grievances. You may not understand what this experience, what this state of existence is like, but my faith, my devotion to Hanspur? This is everything that I am. Not only without Hanspur would I not exist, if not for my faith, and the faith of those around me in his divine grace, I would waste away. To be without faith in Hnaspur might be akin for you to being trapped in a room without air. The flame that beats in your heart would slowly, desperately, agonizingly sputter and shrink, and you are pulled further and further away from... "Mom". I cannot even die a proper death I do not think, something which evokes in me an even greater fear than perhaps... ah, let me re-phrase, I am getting off topic. Your faith is warm and loving, much like my devotion to Hanspur, this is true. And perhaps in time we can reach a better understanding. But I am near helpless, and in a poor state of mind. To add onto this the threat your presence poses? You can surely imagine now why I am distressed. For all those you speak to about your Mom, you steal fuel from my fire, as surely as water would steal breath from your lips. We are certainly not enemies, but your proselytizing could leave me starving in the streets. This set of differences in the nature of our faiths is what unnerves me so. I do not ask anything of you, but you have seen me near my barest, most desperate state. I am not pleased that this is how we first converse in a serious and theological manner. If you at some point find it pertinent to choose to aid me in some way, matters of the faith might be some of the most prevalent and serious issues I address. I am going to rest now, and see if I cannot find myself in a better state given time and charity from those around me.
>>
No. 831375 ID: d36af7

>>>/questdis/115717
Valeno's last torch burned down to a stub a few miles back, but the tunnel has been straight and smooth and level with no complications, probably bored out with powerful magic long ago, and there's a faint violet light up ahead. Finally the borehole opens into a natural-seeming cave, the visible section of which is about a hundred feet wide and sixty feet from the ceiling to the surface of the dark pool in the center.

Top half of the visible cave is pale bare rock, with a thin bridge of some frothy yellow material arcing along a structurally-implausible S-curve, like a flapping banner or ribbon frozen in time, from the borehole's exit to another ledge on the far side. Upper surfaces of the bridge and ledge are not visible, because the light is coming from below.

Bottom half of the cave is a riot of color, flowers and garden vegetables and other plants flourishing in the radiance of two... lotus blossoms? Enormous gems? Red one on the right, blue one on the left, both floating on the surface of the pool, near opposite shores. There are creatures moving through the garden, quietly tending the plants. The one in charge appears to be a large wolf sculpted from moss, while the remaining three are elvenoids - either actual elves, or androgynous adolescent humans or half-humans - wearing sackcloth tunics and crowns of braided daisies. They haven't noticed you yet. There might be other exits underneath the crescent-moon-shaped ledge you arrived on, but it's hard to see for sure without leaning around at an awkward angle and risking a fall.
>>
No. 831413 ID: 094652

Azure realizes Nistamatsin's party is the largest she's ever been in. After a day of peddling her physical and sensual assets, she asks the facestealer for a quick review of the roles of the party in and out of combat. Azure pridefully lists her exceptional expertise as a support role with a focus in healing, party buffing, and enemy 'distraction', and shows off her performance abilities in singing and dancing, with an air of overconfidence that is less of an impossibility and more of an unfulfilled destiny. And of course, she is certain he has seen Pog's defiance of death many times over. Surely the brute has piqued his interest as a guardian?
>>
No. 831442 ID: 3abd97

>Your faith is warm and loving
In fairness, Rhea's practice of and perspective on her mother's faith is biased, and focused on the nicer bits. Like any religion, there's a certain amount of room for different practitioners to emphasize different aspects of the teachings and lore.

I mean, firemom is a god of fire and the deep earth, worshiped by goblins. It's not all gonna be sunshine and roses.


>>831373
Rhea gives Isaiah's story a sympathetic ear. Really, though, she's not here to proselytize, or to deprive him of an audience.

New side-quest: find a way to make dessert for the ghost-boy possessed armor. He needs some cheering up.
>>
No. 831507 ID: af6e04

>Kent disagrees
Nistamatsin directs all complaints to the statue.

>the spear and subterranean vehicle are also group property
"You should still have the deck of many things in your possession. Why don't you try your own luck?"

>she asks the facestealer for a quick review of the roles of the party in and out of combat.
From what the demon can gather, Kent seems very mobile and would make an excellent saboteur, Geoffrey is an expert at making clean tactical retreats, Rhea seems to have a variety of skills on top of being good at setting things on fire, and Helen is extremely adept at leaving a path of general ruin in her wake. A perfect team, though as a creature of chaos he's not sure how good he'll be at securing their loyalty.

>Surely the brute has piqued his interest as a guardian?
Nistamatsin asks if Pog can be trusted to wield a somewhat valuable weapon without losing it.
>>
No. 831519 ID: d22dc0

>>831442
>not here to preach

His discomfort is not because of her intentions, but rather, her ability. She could, inadvertently, or purposely, put him at risk, and he currently would struggle to do anything about it; not so much a personal judgement of Rhea, rather that it is a threat few others pose currently.

That said, he is appreciative of her kind nature. He indicates that, should he get back on his feet, he will perhaps be in a more amiable position. If she wishes to bake for him, she will likely struggle; he explains that he is sustained through the divine providence of Hanspur, and the holy praises showered upon his patron are the fuel that keeps him going. Perhaps though, if he is able to elicit prayer from others, she might be kind enough to let him use her oven; once they've been engraved into clay tablets and baked, they can sustain him for much longer.

OOC, I have no doubt Rhea is not an entirely accurate representation of her people's whole faith; obviously though Isaiah is basing his statements on his reactions with Rhea, having little else to go on. So consider it more a reflection on what he thinks of her; warm, kind, but dangerous simply by her existence, like a hot oven filled with cookies. As long as the proper precautions are made, that oven is your best friend. If you're not careful though you could end up homeless and destitute. In the middle ground, you're likely to be somewhat anxious of getting burned even during casual interactions.

>>831507
>Direct all complaints at the statue

Kent indicates they doubt it understands hand symbols. It is rather impressive though. Surely there is someone out there to whom such an object would be quite valuable- actually, make that at least two someones, as you're probably quite fond of it already.

As for property ownership, and "trying their luck" Kent is already in possession of the Charm bracelet, and is happy to let the matter gather dust until a latter date; as for the "Deck of Many Things", Kent is somewhat confused, but then quickly understands what the demon is referring to. Perhaps in a more dire situation; currently though, much like when Nistamatsin heard bird song in the dungeon, they have a good thing going, and it hardly seems proper to keep gambling before they've even made the most out of their current winnings. And please, that is not an invitation for more threats or promises of violence.

As for how you can win Kent's loyalty, well... Kent doesn't really pay allegiance to anyone. Relationships should be mutually beneficial, and subject to frequent change. Currently, Kent has significant incentive to continue their relationship with the group, and, if they're honest, is almost giddy at the prospect of being allowed to do so. So as long as you keep it up, you've already got me where you want me, and I'll be happy to follow you if it means continued access to these technological marvels. I'd appreciate time to pursue my goals on the side, but building capital and creating social bonds that one can call upon for aid is already a worthwhile time sink that benefits me. Certainly you'd have no objection to my less than legal pursuits or any subsequent aggression towards certain political or legal systems. Kent agrees with Nistamatsin's assessment; we have quite the merry band put together it seems.
>>
No. 831546 ID: b45626

>>831375
Valeno, after marveling at the size of the lotus gems(?), figures the best option is to move along and avoid any sort of confrontation if they can help it. Does the yellow pathway seem like it would hold Valeno's weight? If so, they will quietly move across, crawling if need be. If not, it might be best to descend down, if possible. What does the cave smell like anyway?

Valeno does wait to see if the creatures seem hostile, or rather does the wolf seem like it is a protector or a warden? (In case they have to confront the creatures).

(OOC: I am just trying to get a bit more context, but i gather from the ledge to the ground is about 30 feet or so. Hope i am doing it all correctly, and am glad to start!)
>>
No. 831550 ID: b45626

rolled 3, 1, 3 = 7

>>831546
Whoops, forgot the proper syntax to roll.
>>
No. 831559 ID: 094652

>>831507
>Try your own luck
Upon seeing the Deck, Azure jolts into a sphinx-like pose of fear. She's seen a Deck once before in her life; a small gathering of poor commoners down on their luck were having a go with a deck they borrowed from a successful adventurer, as they had lost most of their fortunes from a recent disaster and had little left to lose. The adventurer explained to Azure that the Deck could erase fortunes, inflict permanent brain damage, and at least four sadistic ways to end your life in slow, agonizing torment. Or it could give you a king's ransom. Long story short, one of them got a reaper and everyone but Azure's party pitched in to save the poor girl's life. The party fled the crime scene, ignoring the ownerless fortunes for the taking, and the deck surrounded by dozens of mutilated corpses.

>not sure how good he'll be at securing their loyalty.
"Then don't. Secure their desire. Figure out what they want. Show them why working for you will get them closer to what they want. If you don't like their desires, change those desires or fire them." Azure puffs her chest on that last sentence.

>Nistamatsin asks if Pog can be trusted to wield a somewhat valuable weapon without losing it.
Actually, yes, if it's on a chain. Azure has never seen Pog lose his mining weapons before. He might drop things if distracted, but as a miner he takes good care of his tools.

>>831442
Azure can do cooking, but she prefers dishes that don't involve taking the food out of the oven while it's still hot. She makes a great campfire curry, though.

Azure asks what the general plan is. Are they going straight through the front door, or will they take time to learn the Subterrene?
>>
No. 831567 ID: d36af7

>>831546
>Does the yellow pathway seem like it would hold Valeno's weight?
Seems like some sort of ongoing miracle that something which crumbles as easily as styrofoam can even support it's own weight,
>rolled 3, 1, 3 = 7
but Valeno crosses to the other side (belly-crawling over the course of half an hour, for fear that hastier movement or concentrating weight on footfalls might bring it all down at once) without incident.
>What does the cave smell like anyway?
Earthy and fresh like a well-maintained greenhouse. Those elvenoid workers don't stink like unwashed orcs, but they don't seem to use soap or eat meat, either. Right in the center, over the mist rising from the pool, there's an undertone of something acrid and alien.

> does the wolf seem like it is a protector or a warden?
Seems to be mostly supervising the other workers rather than actively seeking potential threats.

There's another borehole-hallway on the far side, but you've still got no light source. Onward, or, if you want to acquire one of those glowing gems, what's the plan? Part of the bridge's curve is directly over the ruby lotus, so you could tie a rope around the bridge, climb down, grab it, and climb back up, all without touching the floor or the water... if you don't slip, and the bridge doesn't crumble. You could also try asking nicely, though obviously that forfeits the element of surprise.

>>831336
>Rhea will see if she can talk Gumbel into letting her use the kitchen, and whipping something up some kind of treat for the group.
>rolled 1, 3, 2 = 6
Gumbel insists on supervising, and repeatedly expresses concern that any and every expensive tool or ingredient might be stolen or damaged, but soon enough it becomes clear that Rhea is actually the better of the two at cooking. Even without as much practical experience, the ability to maintain a fire at the correct temperature by divine fiat (rather than indirect observation and manual adjustment of fuel or airflow) frees up a lot of time and attention for all the other little tasks involved.

What specifically are you making?
>>
No. 831620 ID: 3abd97

>What specifically are you making?
Well, depends what's on hand, but I assume ingredients come under our meals tab, which we already paid for with booze.

They're not far from that river and all those berries, so I imagine they must have fresh fruit.

How about a nice big pie or two for the table, and some turnovers for party food that's easier to walk around with, and for snacking?

Supplies / goodwill permitting, Rhea is more than willing to make enough to share with the locals and not just the adventuring party.

(Geoffrey will be happy with that selection, at least).
>>
No. 831680 ID: fc3fc0

>>831620
Kent requests something insect based, perhaps some sort of fritter, or a soup/salad dish garnished with grubs, or maybe some larger bugs roasted up on a kebab? It's been a while, but if there's personal tastes under consideration, those were the basis for many of Kent's meals growing up, and nostalgia is one of the best ingredients and chef can use, in their unprofessional opinion.
>>
No. 831686 ID: af6e04

rolled 3, 3, 2 = 8

>>831007
>"I think the Norns are laughing at me already!" before breaking down in manic giggles.
"You should sit down, Deros. It's been a long day."

Should I seek out medical attention or did Ji do a pretty thorough job under the time constraints?

Probably would be a good idea to give Sage Frist some space right now lest he go completely mad. But on the other hand, I still have no real idea why he claims to know me. And the fact that he's host to some sort of parasite just adds another layer of confusion. Guess I'll try to engage in small talk about 'old times' once things have settled down?

Helen will try some of Rhea's cooking but she won't be engaging in the festivities. When she's not catching up with Sage Frist she'll be visiting Isaiah (who she's very glad to see alive, he had been swallowed by a giant snake last time she laid eyes on him) and offering solemn and genuine thanks to Hanspur for helping to guide her through the Bloodmist Labyrinth.
>>
No. 831688 ID: d36af7

>>831413
>support role with a focus in healing, party buffing, and enemy 'distraction'
Lots of ways to interpret that with class variants and archetypes and GURPS powers,
>performance abilities in singing and dancing
...but with this, straight-up corebook Bard jumps to the top of the list. Any objections, or shall we hammer out her list of spells known?
>>
No. 831763 ID: b45626

rolled 5, 4, 5 = 14

>>831567

While stealing a lotus for light would be quite useful, the risks of falling in the water, being spotted, or the bridge collapsing are too great.

Does the bridge seem to powder or smell in anyway? Valeno is making sure as they go into the darkness, that other creatures don't have a good chance of smelling them. (Demons notwithstanding.) If it does, Valeno will try to wipe it off (quietly!) when they cross the bridge.

So, Valeno begrudgingly crawls across the bridge, hoping the darkness ahead is short and vacant.
>>
No. 831869 ID: d36af7

>>831763
Vacant yes, short no. After eight more hours of following the left wall through pitch-black winding tunnels, Valeno is down to two meals of trail rations and similarly low on water. Suddenly there's a broad wooden door - which is an excellent sign of proximity to the surface, wood's too valuable deep underground - with two inscriptions on the wall next to it, one clumsy and almost completely eroded, the other tidier and probably dating back no more than fifty years. What languages does Valeno know well enough to read by touch?
>>
No. 831872 ID: 3abd97

>What languages does Valeno know well enough to read by touch?
OOC, but you might find this helpful when answering that question.

https://tgchan.org/wiki/Please_do_not_Take_these_Organs#Languages
>>
No. 831876 ID: 3abd97

>>831680
Seems simple enough to make a substitution from berry to bug stuffing in a pastry, though that depends on the (nominally) human stocked kitchen having the right ingredients available.
>>
No. 831882 ID: 094652

Azure would like rainbow fruit pie, in particular a strawberry-shortcake orange-jelly lemon-tart lime-custard blueberry-crumbler vanilla-ice cream mulberry-chocolate mega-pie all baked in layers with a white chocolate crust.

If you're wondering how she's so slim, the pies are fist-sized and Pog eats whatever she doesn't finish.

... Azure pouts, but accepts the offer for a simple one-fruit pie. Also, she asks Mr. Bristleback if she can perform her song and dance routine, test out how much she can make.
>>
No. 831907 ID: b45626

rolled 2, 4, 2 = 8

>>831872

(OOC: I don't know the most common languages so bear with me.)

Valeno thinks about it for a second, "what languages DO I know?"

Thinking back to being on the streets, and their parents teaching them the Vishkanya language and Low Draconic. (Humish?) However, learning to steal to survive, you have to learn how to read, or find yourself reaching into a barrel of full of waste instead of food. Besides, the Walking Vipers mainly have written many books on their accomplishments and discoveries.

So, I would gather it would be something like this:

Spoken:
Vishkanya-3.
Low Draconic-3.
White(Green?) Elvish-2(1?)
Green(White?) Elvish-1(2?)

Written:
Vishkanya-3.
Low Draconic-3.
White(G?) Elvish-2


Valeno figuring there is nothing to lose, will run their fingers over both writings to try and comprehend either one. Is there a light coming from the keyhole of the door? If Valeno cannot understand either of the markings, and if there is light, peeking through the keyhole might be a good option. Regardless, listening to hear what's on the other side, might give Valeno an edge.

IF there is no sound, no light from the keyhole, AND Valeno cannot read the text, then the only real option is to open the door. Lockpicking if neccessary.

Walking in the dark for 8 hours is making Valeno really nervous. Whoever those folk were back there, maybe asking them for assistance might have been a better idea. Either that or Valeno would end up harvesting vegetables till they died.

"Ugh, that's an awful way to go."
>>
No. 831935 ID: d36af7

>>831907
You've also got written level 1 in goblin. The newer inscription is in Low Draconic and says more or less "welcome to the hall of healing." The worn inscription is in goblin runes and...
>rolled 2, 4, 2 = 8
It starts off with a masculine second-person plural pronoun, leading into a prepositional phrase. "All you guys who (x)" where x involves pack animal urine somehow. Then there's the verb 'to be,' future tense, and some other stuff that's really hard to figure out, and it wraps up with "...resulting in your death."

Door is unlocked and can be pushed inward with a creak from rusty hinges. Smells like there are undead inside, but stairs are also visible leading upward, with a faint light at the top.
>>
No. 832246 ID: d36af7

Alright, so, out of everybody in Zelkor's Ferry, who's taking the Lieutenant-Commander's deal and spending almost every waking minute for a week on language lessons?
>>831935
At the top of the stairs the hallway splits in a T-junction. Light seems to be coming from the left, but there's also a puddle of noxious-smelling goo on the floor that way. Right-side hall is dark, but clean.
>>
No. 832250 ID: 094652

>>832246
A new language sounds interesting. Azure will TRY. (If she can't, then she can't. She can go back to offering her comfort/merchant services every day and performing song and dance at the inn at night.)

Pog will spend his week at the lumber mill. He'll also take simple jobs moving heavy things if they're available.
>>
No. 832254 ID: 46ae62

>>832246
Kent agrees, Isaiah does not- assuming that won't result in Isaiah being attacked by an angel
>>
No. 832421 ID: af6e04

>>832246
>who's taking language lessons

Nistamatsin and Helen will. (Helen's probably going to make additional use of the archon's offers for training) Geoffrey too, as subterrenes are probably very useful for running away.
>>
No. 833617 ID: d36af7

>>832254
>assuming that won't result in Isaiah being attacked by an angel
The lieutenant commander is currently operating under 'Be Not Afraid' protocols, meaning she will resort to violence only in narrowly-defined extreme circumstances, after other options have been exhausted. At the very least you can count on a polite yet unambiguous warning before blades are swung in anger, and opportunities to surrender as soon as you stop being an immediate threat. As for the language lessons specifically, such coercion would make it a leonine contract, which is definitionally unconscionable to enforce.

Rhea spends most of the week cajoling the fires in the inn's kitchen and Big Morgan's smithy/Deslena's kiln to optimal performance, and directing Pog to cut the 'tastiest' sorts of wood in support of those negotiations.

Somebody roll for Isaiah's structural repairs, and establish what other resources are being thrown into that project.
>>
No. 833689 ID: fc3fc0

rolled 5, 4, 6 = 15

>>833617
Isaiah is relieved that he is not at risk of holy retribution, and while he's not sure exactly how it would work in his circumstance, he doesn't doubt the messenger has some way of enforcing its Gods will.

As for repairs, Kent is happy to help, and Wendy is welcome as well, but I was under the impression Isaiah completed his basic repairs right before fading out. What's left to be done? And did anything come of interger 8 on the black bar charm? I was thinking that, given the bracelet slowly regenerates, there might be some way to make a little more money off of it to procure supplies. Free room and board is nice, but most of our characters won't have time to work
>>
No. 833691 ID: 3abd97

rolled 4, 4, 2 = 10

>>833617
On the subject of what Rhea's been up to, did she manage to find out which faiths those holy symbols belonged to while she was in Passholdt?

And how charged up is Mode? Does Rhea need to arrange something with Tethru before we head out at the end of the week?

>establish what other resources are being thrown into that project
If the [engineering][small]goblin[small] scholars need help heating and forging metal, Rhea's willing to talk the fire into being more cooperative.
>>
No. 833692 ID: 3abd97

>>833691
Whups, formatting fail. That should be:

"If the [engineering]goblin scholars"

Experimenting with notation to show alternate language word substitutions.
>>
No. 833752 ID: d36af7

>>833689
>interger 8 on the black bar charm
It's a wooden ladder, 24 feet long, weighing 160 pounds. Probably needs three people (or Pog) to maneuver safely. Odo the Innkeeper figures it might be handy enough for roof repair to pay room and board for four for a week, but he doesn't really need more than one giant ladder.
>>833691
>which faiths those holy symbols belonged to
Ankh Man is actually named Seth or Sekh or something like that. Angsty tormented goth antihero underworld guardian from somewhere far across the desert. Hyena face, forked rat tail.
Silver crescent with twelve-headed hydra is an archaic symbol of Hecate, one of the handmaidens of the moon. She waits, alone, at crossroads.
+1 Sword of Shininess remains ambiguous, though the hilt shape is remarkably similar to that of a charm on that item-conjuring bracelet.
>>
No. 833883 ID: af6e04

rolled 6, 5, 2 = 13

>establish what other resources are being thrown into that project.
Do we have any relevant resources? Big Morgan probably won't work just for ale. We might have to go bandit hunting to earn more favors from these villagers.
>>
No. 833892 ID: 3abd97

>Do we have any relevant resources?
(A mostly OOC review of resources).

Nin probably has the largest collection of valuable objects, but most of those you don't want to sell.

Geoffrey has some gold he found on the chessboard, which might be easier to buy some stuff with than bartering magic-ed up bracelet resources. Azure's got jewellery she could see, but this isn't the best market for it.

Other than that, our biggest asset is probably trading favors. You've got a group of people with a wide variety of skills, some of which may be of immediate use to the people we want to barter with here. (Rhea can cook for people, several of us are craftspeople who can make or repair things, Helen could be useful for various magical or curse related odds and ends, etc).
>>
No. 833942 ID: d36af7

>>833883
>Big Morgan probably won't work just for ale.
GURPS Low-Tech Companion 3: Daily Life and Economics says a professional smith probably earns around $900 per month at the journeyman level, while decent booze in bulk is normally worth $10 per gallon. Local market for ale is saturated, which drives the price down, but whatever Big Morgan doesn't feel up to drinking himself before it goes bad (and it's got a reasonably long shelf life, since preservation is half the point of fermenting stuff) he can resell to some riverboat or caravan.

Let's not forget the value of the barrels themselves. Oddly, the chart in GURPS Low-Tech doesn't have a column for 60-gallon containers, but a 40-gallon watertight wooden barrel weighs 64lb and is worth $452 empty, while an 80-gallon weighs 100lb and costs $712 and a 120-gallon weighs 176lb and costs $976.

You've also got Pog providing abundant fuel, Rhea supernaturally optimizing the actual fire, and minimal need for raw material (apart from exotic internal bits Wendy can supply) since it's a repair job rather than new fabrication. In the 'turnip economy,' that all adds up.
>>
No. 834058 ID: af6e04

rolled 5, 6, 5 = 16

>Nin probably has the largest collection of valuable objects, but most of those you don't want to sell.
I don't think I can sell them unless there's a magic item pawn shop near by.

>Other than that, our biggest asset is probably trading favors.
>>833942
Well, we already have everybody with relevant experience working on it. I don't know what other resources we can really allocate.
>>
No. 834217 ID: d22dc0

rolled 6, 1, 3 = 10

Given that Isaiah is currently somewhat indisposed, and won't suffer from the normal fatigue and joint pain one might experience when conducting a repetitive action, he offers to help Rhea crank Mode's box. He doesn't really get it, but until he's back on his feet and able to do his own maintenance work, having something to do would be nice. He can also help transport barrels of alcohol with ant haul, provided he's allowed to do so anonymously, under the dark of night, no questions asked and most importantly no witnesses, please and thank you.
>>
No. 834376 ID: d36af7

>>833691
>arrange something with Tethru
>rolled 4, 4, 2 = 10
Tethru is willing to donate as many of her own eyes to the quest as needed, up to a practical limit of one every four hours or so in exchange for sufficient quantities of alcohol, but will not go into the Mouth of Doom herself, nor touch anything or anyone that has come out of it until that person or thing has been either inspected and purified to the sworn satisfaction of Lt.Cmdr. Jalkaren Blessed-Is-The-Light, or boiled in vinegar for at least an hour while Tethru herself watched. Auguries indicated that any lesser degree of precaution would result in death.
>>
No. 834569 ID: 3abd97

>>834376
Thank you very much!

>either inspected and purified to the sworn satisfaction of Lt.Cmdr. Jalkaren Blessed-Is-The-Light, or boiled in vinegar for at least an hour
Rhea isn't fond of submerging herself in liquid, and most of the party isn't heat-resistant, so I suspect we'll be opting for the former.
>>
No. 834724 ID: af6e04

rolled 1, 1, 2 = 4

Nin would rather go for the 'boiled in vinegar' option if it comes down to it.

>In the 'turnip economy,' that all adds up.
Can we (as a lower priority than Isaiah's repairs) have Big Morgan make a lanyard for that spear? Nin will tell him not to unscrew the cap under any circumstances.

Also there's the tainted air we still have to address. Not too keen on owing the angel anymore favors, and Kalgor is gonna need actual payment. So the bandit hunting plan is still looking attractive. It'll probably have to wait til after our study session, but do we have any volunteers? Pog, Kent, and Geoffrey are obvious choices (in addition to myself, of course). Haven't seen the fighting capabilities of anybody else, and Rhea particularly seems uninterested in violence.
>>
No. 834726 ID: af6e04

rolled 2, 4, 5 = 11

Also on the subject of Kalgor,
>some curses broken

Helen will definitely go have a talk with him when she gets the time. Roll is to fabricate a plausible story about how she got the curse and how it definitely wasn't inflicted by a member of the drakocracy.
>>
No. 834780 ID: d36af7

>>834724
>lanyard for that spear
>rolled 1, 1, 2 = 4
Actually, Morgan's got a minor magic item which he's been trying to get rid of. Somebody special-ordered it, then never came back to pick it up. Pair of rings, look like they're made from different colors of glass all braided together, one goes around a weapon's hilt or haft, other on your finger, and then even if you end up miles apart the weapon will never be beyond arm's reach. Technically it's a curse, since it also prevents you using any other weapons, or getting properly married, but if you're pretty sure this is the best spear you're ever going to get your hands on, there's no other downside. It's yours for just fifty gold. That's the bounty on any two bandits, without even worrying about the 'alive' bonus, or less than half of Geoffrey's fat purse.
>>
No. 834784 ID: d36af7

>>834726
Kalgor smiles and nods at the story but seems unconvinced, then pulls a set of dental tools out from under his beard for the actual examination. After delicately extracting some glass shards, quartz pebbles, a thumb-sized fragment of wood that was still on fire, and a desiccated chunk of gourd with his own full name engraved on the inside, he admits this is beyond his skill to sort out. No charge, though.
>>
No. 834809 ID: b45626

rolled 2, 4, 2 = 8

>>831935

(I have to apologize for not responding sooner, it's been a pretty hectic couple of weeks.)

Valeno smelling the foul stench of undeath, steels themselves, drawing a dagger. Quietly, and carefully sneaking to climb the stairs and to (hopefully) the exit.
>>
No. 834814 ID: 094652

Pog has some spare time, he could help with the bandit problem. He's not killing any of Azure's friends if he sees them, though.
>>
No. 834830 ID: d36af7

>>834809
Left, or right? In case you missed it:
>>832246
>At the top of the stairs the hallway splits in a T-junction. Light seems to be coming from the left, but there's also a puddle of noxious-smelling goo on the floor that way. Right-side hall is dark, but clean.
>>
No. 834854 ID: af6e04

rolled 2, 1, 1 = 4

>>834780
Sold! As long as I can still lend the spear out to my fellow party members.

>getting properly married
Sounds like a plus to me.

>less than half of Geoffrey's fat purse.
After a bit of sweet talking Geoffrey is practically crawling up the walls and literally throwing his money at the demon.
>>
No. 834911 ID: d36af7

>>834814
Bounty hunting is one of those things you need a more detailed plan and at least one roll for. Who else is coming along on this bandit-hunting expedition? Are you going after Tall Jack Rat's boys inside the Mouth of Doom, or bringing more supplies for a multi-day trip to scope out the ghost town of Rook's Vineyard, or just wandering around in the woods looking for trouble?

>>834854
>rolled 2, 1, 1 = 4
Despite obvious interest in the item, you manage to haggle Big Morgan down to 40 gold, leaving Geoffrey with 88 gold in the retirement fund plus an IOU scrawled in the twisted runes of Nistamatsin's native language.
>>
No. 834940 ID: af6e04

rolled 3, 5, 6 = 14

>>834911
>Are you going after Tall Jack Rat's boys inside the Mouth of Doom
Seems like the quickest way to collect a bounty, since we know where they are. Can we gather any info on how many faces we'll be dealing with? Where can we find this Drusilla, and would it be plausible to make peaceful contact? Can Tethru tell us anything valuable?

Also would like to ask around about Rook's Vineyard and why it's abandoned.

>IOU
Of course, the fat mortal shall not regret his investment.
>>
No. 834972 ID: b45626

rolled 5, 1, 4 = 10

>>834830

Valeno is thinking about the inscriptions back down at the doorway, was one on the left wall and the other on the right?
>>
No. 835144 ID: d36af7

>>834940
>Can we gather any info on how many faces we'll be dealing with?
>rolled 3, 5, 6 = 14
More than four, less than fifty.
>Where can we find this Drusilla,
Out in the woods, further south. Mostly.
>and would it be plausible to make peaceful contact?
Not so much.
>Can Tethru tell us anything valuable?
"About Drusilla? If she shows up, don't try to run, or her pack'll chase you. Don't try to fight, or she'll kill you. Parley's probably no good either, but there were some little kids - humans less than fifteen summers, anybody's guess for the elf but he looked about equivalent - who made it work once, when they were out chasing after a wounded black bear a few miles east of the ferry. They came back alive, anyhow, marching in from the west weeks later, reeking of worg-musk, salt and ash all over their clothes and spider gunk in their hair. Niknak's crew might know more, since they were around back then and fought alongside the kids in question once or twice. Brothers-in-arms always end up sharing stories."
>Also would like to ask around about Rook's Vineyard and why it's abandoned.
"All the women 'round there got married and moved away, only nobody ever did figure out exactly where they'd gone to. Every single happy bride had all her debts paid off with unmarked gold, then scrawled her goodbye and parting well-wishes, often stuff nobody but her would know, on a scrap of vellum soaked in fish oil. Neat legible handwriting, particularly if by all accounts she'd some'ow first learned to read that very same night just before she left.

"All the women, that is, except them what slept in windowless rooms with spell-proofed doors, triple-locked from the inside. That ain't no way to live, so eventually any soul with a lick of sense just pulled up stakes and got out. Might still be some hermits down there, squatting in the shell of a ghost town, but not many care to go check, not when they'd risk spending the night there and meeting the so-called Matchmaker Under Lake Laogai."

>>834972
Both were on the right, but "welcome to the hall of healing" was just above eye level while "...resulting in your death" was waist-high, and might have been plastered over at some point.
>>
No. 835181 ID: af6e04

rolled 3, 1, 2 = 6

>>835144
>Niknak's crew might know more
Who knew that supernatural baking skills would be such an asset? Nin will ask Rhea to bake some fresh bread before they leave.

>spell-proofed doors
What kind of warding does this imply, and could I replicate it? Seems like the kidnapper at least couldn't phase through solid walls and had no interest in the 'breaking' part of 'breaking and entering'.

Nin asks Tethru if he can provide any additional services aside from ale to repay her for all the useful information and eyeballs she's given us.
>>
No. 835788 ID: d36af7

>>835181
>any additional services
She'd be interested in talks with a minor spirit court, known as the Fethine, through a neutral intermediary. They're based near the old coast road north of the river. No rush, though.
>>834972
While Valeno is standing around being indecisive, a hungry giant centipede skitters along the ceiling of the left (better-lit) hallway and moves to attack. It's about eight feet long but only as high at the shoulder as a housecat.
>>
No. 835809 ID: 16059d

>>835788
Oh god(s)! Okay, well that sinches it. Fighting a giant centipede alone is never a good idea, and while Caleno believes they are resistant to most poisons, now is not the time to find out. Light is the way out, and if it comes to blows, at least they can see this insect.

So, Valeno will try to hurry past the centipede and book it to the exit. If it blocks the path, then Valeno will run to the right.
>>
No. 835814 ID: d36af7

>>835809
Can't confidently dodge past the centipede and then outrun it, not with goo all over the floor, particularly not without a roll. (Capitalization error. Try turning off autocorrect.) Running away to the right, there's a couple of corners and then a dead end. In the course of frantic fumbling around for a way forward, you touch a bas-relief carving of a hand, and then experience seven seconds of total sensory deprivation.

After that, you find yourself in a brightly lit 30' square room. There are no conventional exits, but more stone bas-relief hands all around the perimeter: one straight ahead, one in the center of the right wall, at least a dozen on the left wall, and the one behind you which is visibly damaged.

Judging by the furnishings, this was some sort of small office complex. Desks and papers seem reasonably well preserved, though one has a skeleton (inanimate) in white robes slumped over it, clutching a red parchment scroll in it's right hand. The bones seem pitted and corroded, and smell slightly foul, like that pool of goo. The skeleton's left hand is missing.
>>
No. 835826 ID: fc3fc0

rolled 3, 4, 4 = 11

>>834911
>Who else is coming

Well Kent is obviously devoting their time to learning a new language, but afterwards they're more interested in learning the ins and outs of all these shiny knew toys than making money. While you all hunt down some poor lost souls Kent will begin some play testing with the Subterrene.
>>
No. 835827 ID: fc3fc0

rolled 1, 1, 5 = 7

Isaiah is going to focus on repairs and subsequently act as a priest of Hanspur around town, preforming whatever acts of charity he can in the name of Hanspur, trying to facilitate trade and travel specifically.
>>
No. 835926 ID: af6e04

rolled 2, 1, 3 = 6

>She'd be interested in talks with a minor spirit court
Nin says he'll look into it once he sorts out his current tangled mess of obligations.

>Pog is the only volunteer
This is fine. Large groups attract unwanted attention, and Pog is probably tough enough to take several men on by himself.

Nin is itching to torture and dismember some evil bandits. How did that study session resolve?
>>
No. 835967 ID: 3abd97

rolled 3, 4, 3 = 10

>Nin will ask Rhea to bake some fresh bread before they leave.
Rhea is happy to help!

>She'd be interested in talks with a minor spirit court, known as the Fethine, through a neutral intermediary
Playing spirit diplomat also feels pretty in Rhea's court. She'd be glad to act as an intermediary, when she has the opportunity.
>>
No. 836231 ID: 73e9c0
File 150784373720.jpg - (1.50MB , 3264x2448 , IMG_0431.jpg )
836231

rolled 2, 6, 1 = 9

>>835814

Glad to be away from that centipede, now to figure out what's going on here.

First thing is to check out the room, to make sure it's safe. The ceiling, the walls, any sort of nooks or crannies. If it's safe Valeno will check out the desk. Checking the notes to gain whatever info there is to be had, taking some if they prove really useful. Lastly, Valeno will check the red scroll,
And see what it has written on it.

"Thanks for giving me a hand....heh."

Good thing there is no one here.

Also, what is illuminating the room?

(Oh, I hope this comes out right, but I have a quick doodle of Valeno here.)
>>
No. 836278 ID: d36af7

>>836231
>First thing is to check out the room, to make sure it's safe. The ceiling, the walls, any sort of nooks or crannies.
No apparent threats, critters, or openings. The room is a solid box of stone at least a yard thick on all sides, with a permanent enchantment keeping the lights on and the air fresh.
>If it's safe Valeno will check out the desk. Checking the notes to gain whatever info there is to be had, taking some if they prove really useful.
Mostly routine hospital records of patients being diagnosed, treated, and discharged, consumable supplies expended and restocked. Apparently those left-hand-shaped carvings are short-range two-way teleporters, which can be selective about who they let through on various criteria, including presence or absence of a contagious disease. There's one patient still checked in to 'isolation cell #3,' presumably third from the left or the right along the back wall, and they can't come out until The Pestilence has run it's course.

Symptoms of The Pestilence: dizziness, mild fever, jaundice, coughing, delusions of grandeur, spontaneous (painless and bloodless) detachment of the left hand at the wrist, vivid visual and tactile hallucinations of a crab-like claw enclosing or replacing the patient's own left hand, or the right hand of other carriers (helpful for early detection), itchy pustules, necrosis of the lungs and/or bone marrow, and in most cases death within hours. Nobody has yet survived even a full week after infection without intensive magical treatment.

>Lastly, Valeno will check the red scroll, and see what it has written on it.
Elaborately illuminated prayer for relief from disease. Five vibrant colors of ink, gold leaf, and almost shimmering with latent magic. Could try to activate it yourself, but since you don't already know the prayer in question by heart (and the letters are so stylized as to be barely intelligible) that would risk a disastrous misfire. Should be easy enough to sell, though, if you can make it back to civilization.
>quick doodle
The actual art looks pretty cool, but the photo could stand to be edited in such a way as to be smaller and have better contrast.
>>
No. 836291 ID: d36af7

>>835827
>act as a priest
>trade and travel
>rolled 1, 1, 5 = 7
Kalgor normally handles that kind of thing, and such a small community can't really support more than one full-time priest. That said, he's been thinking about retiring in the next few decades, and Hanspur's portfolio seems like an excellent fit for the area. You willing to help out part-time, a loose sort of apprenticeship in honoring distant speleids and dwarven ancestor-spirits, or is Hanspur a jealous god?

>>835926
>How did that study session resolve?
Anybody who stuck with it for the full week is now semi-literate (basic grammar, few hundred of the most common words and clues to others, the 'see spot run' sort of level) in the molemen's technical language, and owes the Lieutenant-Commander one more favor than they did before.
>>
No. 836302 ID: d22dc0

rolled 6, 2, 1 = 9

>>836291
>is Hanspur a jealous god?
Not particularly; it's very important to Isaiah to give credit where credit is due, so he doesn't mind acknowledging the work and prowess of other Gods. A traveling merchant doesn't try to bring goods that established stores already offer, otherwise they'd starve. Likewise, Isaiah wouldn't seek to disrupt the community that's been built here, or supersede any religious authority.

On the other hand, every action he takes, from the simple lifting of a finger, to the construction of a barn, or blazing of a new path upon which others may walk, all of these are made possible through Hanspur, and thus he credits Him for all his actions. As a prophet of Hanspur he'll be on the road again before long, to bring word to other areas, travel the lands and grow as an individual, so an apprenticeship probably wouldn't do either of them much good. He'd be happy to act as an aid for the next year or so while his travel companions work off a debt- he doesn't even need food or shelter for his work. He's happy simply to hear the thanks from the people he helps, and see the prosperity of a community grow. He'd be especially happy to discuss matters of religion, and exchange knowledge or ideas.

"As my father Elohim would say, one who learns nothing of others cannot truly teach anything. So, are your ancestors your Gods? I must admit, I'm not familiar with the Speleids you mentioned. Do you practice a local custom, or is this a larger practice that I'm unfamiliar with?"

After Isaiah is able to walk in public without his hollowness being immediately apparent, he is much more cheerful, and happily engages anyone and everyone he can, especially with regards to religious discussions. Knowing you can feed yourself and won't risk fading into the ether, or get torn apart by and angry mob do help improve ones mood. While the others study, hunt bandits, and whatever else they're doing, he'll settle into life within Zelkor's Ferry, and try to work closely with Kalgor so as not to step on anyone's toes. Rolling general diplomacy I suppose, to see how well he's able to integrate himself into this little town and make meaningful questions, while obviously keeping secrets from people in a close knit community that's just been visited by a demon and his posse.
>>
No. 836306 ID: fc3fc0

>>836302
*Make meaningful relationships, not questions. Normally I would go back and delete my post, edit the typos out and post it again, but I don't want the roll to be disingenuous if I do it again.
>>
No. 837216 ID: af6e04

rolled 6, 4, 3 = 13

>>836302
>happily engages anyone and everyone he can, especially with regards to religious discussions
Any attempts to proselytize to Nin result in deliberate and aggressive conversational derailment.

Getting the subterrene up and running is still a long term goal, so does anybody want to volunteer to check the place out in person and gather some more information?
>>
No. 837217 ID: af6e04

rolled 3, 3, 2 = 8

Helen's trying to absorb information as fast as she can, reading Magic of the Dragon Lords and that three volume slipcase whenever she's not learning from Lt.Cmdr. Jalkaren Blessed-Is-The-Light.

Speaking of the angel's teaching, she'll (after the language lesson) ask for training on the possible bad air we'll find in the dungeon first. Then she'll ask what the angel can teach her about curse breaking and low circle divinations.
>>
No. 837334 ID: d36af7

End of the first week, a keelboat shows up - the Yellow Dagger, crewed by Captain Riko Jaskin and ten sailors, guarded by a large cat with a striped tail and oddly tufted ears. They're here to pick up the surplus ale, then head back up river to sell it in Passholdt.

Rasmus Pye approaches Nistamatsin about the possibility of shipping the three-quarter-ton solid silver statue to Passholdt as well, to be auctioned off to someone who'd be able to truly appreciate it's... positive aesthetic qualities, whatever they may be. He'd cover the shipping costs out of his own pocket, and take a 20% brokerage fee out of the final sale price, which would almost certainly leave you with a profit of at least three thousand gold.

Ten gold is enough for a suit of no-frills plate armor, but that mass produced stuff doesn't use the best grades of steel, and all the slack in the design to make the joints adjustable means it weighs about 90 pounds. For around 300 gold per person - rather more for Pog, of course - we could have a master armorsmith outfit your whole party with custom-fitted enchanted plate. That'd be half the weight and twice the protection, at least after you figure in the spider-silk arming doublets. If you're commissioning a whole batch at once, you could even get standardized insignia and decorations, or something silly like covering it in razor-sharp spikes.
>>
No. 837409 ID: d22dc0

rolled 6, 3, 6 = 15

>>837216
The party would be hard pressed to stop Kent from playing with the Subterrene now that the language course is over, unless someone is is sleeping in it and taking watch to prevent mischevious engineers from fiddling about. Kent also chimes in that, despite how unsettling the statue appears, it should be worth more than 3000 - 4000 gold though. The silver alone should be quite valuable, although the artistic properties are harder to evaluate

Rolling an appraisal check for the value of the raw silver making up the statue. The only applicable life experience I can think of is Kent having to buy silver and other metals for pet projects in the past, giving them at least a ballpark frame of reference
>>
No. 837450 ID: 094652

>>837409
Upon hearing Nistamatsin's ridiculously incorrect estimate, Azure faceslaps herself with both wings.

Azure promptly explains how a centerpiece is properly estimated. She goes into a full-blown lecture of appraisal basics; testing the purity of the silver by intentionally damaging a less detailed section with the proper acids, then using ice magics to measure the solidity of the inside, and a simple weight-by-volume test using water displacement to determine raw-material sums and shipping costs. After the physical tests are completed, enchanters are called to magically analyze the full contents; if the reports don't correspond with your physical
test results, fire the enchanter because they're working with the buyer(s). The rest depends on artistic value, something that is subjective and must be valued according to culture - but then, that would mean Mister Pye could estimate the statue in the rural areas of a country where modern art is heresy, get it stamped and purchased for the raw value of the silver, and then move it over to a country full of weirdos and sell it off to some aristocrat during one of their puffed-chest parties where they purchase overpriced junk that seems like artifacts to look good in front of their friends.

Take Ten for Appraisal and Sense Motive.
>>
No. 837516 ID: af6e04

rolled 2, 4, 6 = 12

>appraisers will melt it with acid, freeze it, and dunk it in water
If we're going to sell the statue we should get that Dorian Gray curse removed. Otherwise Nin might drop dead one day when some clumsy mover drops the statue on its head. Can Kalgor do anything?

>matching armor and insignia
Sounds good, but Nin would like to impose some sort of communal loyalty pact on anybody who accepts the insignia. Can Lt.Cmdr. Jalkaren Blessed-Is-The-Light provide witness for such a thing?

>unless someone is is sleeping in it and taking watch to prevent mischevious engineers from fiddling about.
Or rigging it with alarm spells! Nin says Kent can tinker if he's present, since the elf won't seem to take 'no' for an answer.
>>
No. 837539 ID: fc3fc0

rolled 5, 4, 1 = 10

>>837516
Kent shrugs, and, although one can't really tell through the mask, they smile a little as they sign that they'd be happy to ask permission before testing out the subterrene, as long as Nin agrees to ask before using Kents bracket. They feel like this is re-hashing old ground though, and it's not like there's a conflict currently! Since they're both here and talking about it right now, why not test it out right now?

Kent tries to encourage Nistamatsin to come with them and just run a couple of short tests to get a feel for how the machine works- Kent is noticeably vibrating while conveying that point. Kent wants to start out by testing the Poilt functions, using a combination of guess and test, advice from the voice, and the bits and pieces they picked up regarding the language. Not really trying to go anywhere, or accomplish anything specific at all, other than gain and record info regarding the operation and functionality of the Subterrene
>>
No. 837582 ID: d36af7

>>837450
>Take Ten for Appraisal and Sense Motive
Three-quarters of a ton is 1500 pounds, a pound of coinage-quality silver (at least ninety-some percent pure, Azure can't remember the exact lower bound, but less than the ultra-pure moonsilver that's got all sorts of exotic properties) is worth a thousand copper coins or fifty silver coins (indeed it basically IS fifty silver coins) or two and a half gold coins. So, three quarters of a ton of silver is worth 3600 gold, minus a 20% brokerage fee, does indeed come out to three thousand. Plus the value of the workmanship, which tends to be a relative pittance for anything involving large quantities of precious metals. So, Rasmus Pye seems to be basing that estimate on the optimistic assumption that this statue is indeed solid coinage-grade silver, rather than, say, a silver shell with a core of mostly lead.

A 20% fee sounds kind of steep, and Mr. Pye seems eager to close this deal for whatever reason, so it might be possible to negotiate that down, but on the other hand you don't know exactly what the shipping, tariffs, and curse-insurance costs are likely to be.
>>837516
>get that Dorian Gray curse removed.
>Can Kalgor do anything?
Soon as Kalgor finds out the statue was provided by an inexplicable deck of cards, he refuses to get involved with it in any way.
>>
No. 837842 ID: af6e04

rolled 2, 3, 3 = 8

>>837539
>as long as Nin agrees to ask before using Kents bracket.
Nin doesn't care about the bracelet, but he thinks assigning ownership by rule of 'touched it first' is going to cause problems if the group stumbles upon more treasure.

>Kent is noticeably vibrating while conveying that point.
Maybe this is what Azure meant by 'secure their desire'? Nin's amused by Kent's enthusiasm and he'll agree to help with whatever experiments the elf wants to run, trying his best to explain some of those 'alien concepts' throughout the night. At some point he'll ask why Kent never takes off the mask and seems to have trouble verbally communicating.

Next day he'll ask Pog to accompany him on that scouting mission to the Mouth of Doom. We'll put together a day's worth of supplies for the trip.
>>
No. 837845 ID: af6e04

Oh, almost forgot the statue business. As much as I'd like fancy matching armor for everyone, it seems a little suicidal to sell the statue while my physical body is still linked to it. Unless anybody else can think of a solution I'll probably have to turn Rasmus down.
>>
No. 837861 ID: d36af7

>>837845
If you explain the nature of the problem, Rasmus offers to draw up a contract under which the buyer would technically be leasing the statue from you, meaning they'd be obligated to keep it repaired (rather than, say, melting it down for scrap) and if they mishandle it in a way that causes you injury, you could invoice them for any resultant medical costs, up to and including resurrection. Of course, it'd be harder to find a buyer willing to agree to such weird terms, so he'd want a bigger cut, say 25%, to compensate for the delays and additional costs involved.

>>837842
>scouting mission to the Mouth of Doom
Who's coming? Organizational stuff like marching order and chain of command would also be helpful to establish.

In order to reduce ambiguity, gimme a complete inventory of what you're bringing along and who's carrying it. Might also be worth considering what other supplies you want. Crowbars, tents, that sort of thing.

The march out to the Mouth is uneventful, there aren't any traps on the stairs down, and the first room is laid out just like the rumors say. https://tgchan.org/kusaba/questarch/res/730630.html#735622 Which door are you going to interact with first, and how?
>>
No. 837870 ID: 094652

>>837861
Azure is loathe to leave Pog again, but she realizes she has a very serious attention deficit disorder. She might have wings for scouting, but they might fly her into the jaws of death again.

Also, there's a ship with eleven sailors. This is the exact moment all her job skills will be at their most applicable in this quaint little forest town.

Azure requests that Nistamatsin promise not to abuse Pog's life debt to him (well, Azure's but whatever) by beginning the delve before the scouting and planning is done. If for whatever reason Nistamatsin decides the most logical course of action is to rush into the literally named Mouth of Doom unprepared, Pog's orders are to save anyone outside, head straight back to town, and tell everyone the "head-putty demon is in big trouble".

Azure will spend the day performing her trades with the lonely sailors; prostitution and product(merchant) by daylight, prostitution and planning(architect) by moonlight. She's also considering a few special purchases; a set of long cufflinks chaining herself to Pog with an easily-removed keyless manacle.
>>
No. 837890 ID: d36af7

>>837870
>performing her trades
Roll for that.
>>
No. 837892 ID: d10e29

rolled 2, 1, 6 = 9

>>837842
>How to claim treasures
Kent explains that they don’t believe it’s purely a case of licking something to claim it’s yours, rather that due to the circumstances of its retrieval, Kent has a right to claim ownership of the bracelet specifically. They followed up on the treasure map, reached down and retrieved it, suffering the pain and risks involved. Kent can also respect that Nin took the risks with this cursed deck and therefore he can lay claim to his spear and statue and marvelously designed, incredibly created, masterwork of engineering layers out before them. So majestic, the intricate interlocking of the parts, the mesmerizing alien designs...

What were we discussing again?

>Mask and speech
The mask makes them feel secure- they feel sick and disoriented when it’s too bright out. They’d take it off right now for you as a demonstration, but they’re not so sure they want to give you better access to their face; no offense of course. And Kent has trouble with their words- mouth doesn’t quite make all the right sounds and work the right way. It’s somewhat embarrassing, and makes Kent nervous, so they try not to speak around others unless it’s really necessary. Got hit a lot growing up, guess they still haven’t outgrown those habits.

Kent and Isaiah are staying behind, unless someone can make a point about why they should come. It’s not so much that they don’t want to go- they’ve just got better things to do.

Let’s do a test on those pilot functions. Rolling to use the subterrene- goal to get some hands on experience with its functions and begin to learn how to operate it, as opposed to trying to go anywhere or use it to do anything.
>>
No. 837986 ID: d36af7

>>837892
After a lot of fiddling with controls, Kent manages to persuade the navigator's chair to recline. A set of straps whip out - which would have entangled anyone sitting in the chair at the time - and a spike erupts through the navigator's headrest, blossoming into a silvery fractal like a three-dimensional snowflake.

This response is initially misinterpreted as an excessively lethal anti-tamper system. Further research indicates that, no, it's supposed to do that. Controls depend almost entirely on neural interface.

'Plugging in' safely will require another roll, at least the first few times.
>>
No. 838025 ID: 094652

rolled 4, 2, 4 = 10

>>837870
I used the word 'prostitution' twice, I meant to add 'performance'.
>>
No. 838062 ID: af6e04

rolled 4, 3, 6 = 13

>>837861
>seems eager to close this deal for whatever reason
>might be possible to negotiate that down
"A quarter of the price? That's quite a deduction, and I'm not even sure I can bear to part with it in the first place." Nin sensually strokes the statue to further illustrate his reluctance.

>It’s somewhat embarrassing, and makes Kent nervous, so they try not to speak around others unless it’s really necessary
"Well we are alone, and I'm not one to judge."

>a spike erupts through the navigator's headrest, blossoming into a silvery fractal like a three-dimensional snowflake.
Nin cackles, and he tells Kent that a little more research seems well worth the time to mitigate the risk of brain damage.

>Who's coming?
Pog seems to be the only volunteer. Geoffrey would probably come too, since this sort of thing is right within his area of expertise. Nin is baffled by his companions' lack of desire to throw themselves into mortal danger for the possible reward of wealth and power. But as long as they're willing to help pilot the subterrene he's not too upset.

>marching order
Nin taking point, then Geoffrey, with Pog in the back holding the magic spear.

>chain of command
Nin tells Pog that he has the most important job of stabbing monsters with the big fire spear but still needs to listen to whatever Nin or Geoffrey tells him.

If you mean overall group chain of command, Azure seems to have some management skills and Rhea has insight beyond what her flowery disposition reveals. I'll tell Azure she's in charge while I'm gone, and I'll inform Kent that Rhea is now the party's quartermaster and any requests to use the subterrene must go through her.

Assuming we have enough turnip wealth to get the mundane items we need...

>complete inventory
-Nistamatsin
Crown of nails
Cinnamon incense
That spoiled brass balm
The statuette
Clean cloth, hooked needles and thread
Feathers and parchment (why scout if you can't draw a map?)
Ten foot pole (carried in hands)
Candles (one tied to the end of the pole)

-Pog
Water jug
Chain armor
Dried meat
Helicopter
Manacles
Concealed plate armor
The magic spear
Tents
(or whatever Pog wants to bring. He's gotta carry the tents though)

-Geoffrey
Dagger
Enchanted belt
His armor (breast plate and a pauldron on his shoulder)
Skullcap helmet
Lamp
Rope (50ft)
Dried Meat, and as much fresh bread as Rhea can cook given the short notice
A new weapon if we can get one

>Azure requests that Nistamatsin promise not to abuse Pog's life debt to him
Nistamatsin says he will take good care of Pog.

Woo! This is the longest post I've ever made, anywhere
>>
No. 838065 ID: af6e04

rolled 5, 5, 6 = 16

>Which door are you going to interact with first, and how?
The north door with the message. By prodding it and checking for traps.
>>
No. 838200 ID: d36af7

>>838065
>checking for traps
>rolled 5, 5, 6 = 16
Seems safe. Which hand are you using to grab the handle and pull the door open? Left, right, delegating to somebody else in the party, or if you're doing something trickier be sure to describe it step by step.
>>
No. 838220 ID: d36af7

>>838025
Azure earns four silver. Not bad for a day's work in town, but it's chump change compared to the rewards of dungeon delving.

A week's room and board for one is seven and a half silver. Ysbel and Tallie don't much appreciate the competition, either.
>>
No. 838229 ID: af6e04

rolled 5, 4, 6 = 15

>>838200
Can I use the pole to turn the handle? Haha if not, right hand.
>>
No. 838271 ID: d36af7

>>838229
Door opens smoothly and quietly as if the hinges were well-oiled. Assuming Geoffrey's got that lantern lit, a 10' square hallway on the far side is visible as it continues 30' straight on before opening out into a wider room.
>>
No. 838284 ID: af6e04

rolled 5, 4, 2 = 11

>>838271
Poking for traps and advancing forward. Anything interesting in the room ahead?
>>
No. 838332 ID: 48a512

>>836278
Is there nothing identifying how th contagion is spread or where it comes from?

Also, are there no notes on where each teleporter leads? It's seems safe to assume the numerous ones lead to isolation cells. What is the date the subject in "isolation cell 3" was submitted? Doubtful they are still alive...

Regardless, Valeno will search the drawers of the desk and pilfer anything on this skeleton, if it can be figured that his bones are no longer contagious. (I know it sounds ridiculous but Valeno wants to be sure.) Included items to take will be the scroll, and any notes that designate mapping or supplie or information on the Pestilence.
>>
No. 838333 ID: 48a512

rolled 6, 4, 2 = 12

>>838332

OOC: stupid mobile.
>>
No. 838394 ID: d36af7

>>838332
>how the contagion is spread
Skin contact or waterborne. Possibly airborne, but the pathogen's spores can't survive long in a dry environment, so if you maintain at least an outstretched staff's distance (roughly ten feet) from coughing patients and fulminating puddles, or else wear a basic filter mask or equivalent protective aura, you should be fine.

Bear in mind that this advice is from people who apparently got wiped out by the Pestilence, so they may have been missing some key detail.

>where it comes from?
Most of the victims seem to have contracted it after check-in. Patient zero is... classified? That's weird.

>where each teleporter leads? It's seems safe to assume the numerous ones lead to isolation cells.
Yep. The other three are Chapel, Front Hall, and the Lab, though it seems to be assumed that anyone working here would know which was which.

>What is the date the subject in "isolation cell 3" was submitted?
Dates are just month and day, year gets filled in when the records are transferred to Archives.

>>838284
Next room is 30' east-west by 40' north-south, and you're coming in through the middle of the south wall. Two other obvious exits, both 10' wide open archways, at opposite ends of the west wall. While glancing over the east wall, something makes the palm of Nistamatsin's right hand slightly but persistently itchy, with no corresponding sensation from the left hand.

Gimme a roll for that asymmetry phobia, and a sketch of the map so far.
>>
No. 838434 ID: af6e04

rolled 1, 4, 4 = 9

>Gimme a roll for that asymmetry phobia, and a sketch of the map so far.
If I don't lose it completely, should be able to solve the problem by cutting my left palm in the same place and applying the spoiled brass balm to the wound.
>>
No. 838436 ID: d36af7

>>838434
Resultant burning-and-freezing sensation and visible brassy patch means Nin ends up needing to cut both hands to balance things out, and is now suffering from the status conditions Moderate Pain and Bad Grip.

To avoid another roll for that phobia, it would be wise not to stick around in this notably asymmetrical room longer than the few minutes necessary to draw a map of it.
>>
No. 838493 ID: 094652

Pog asks Nistamatsin why Nistamatsin stabbed Nistamatsin's hands. Nistamatsin's response is not satisfactory, but Nistamatsin gave an order to Pog to stand there while Nistamatsin draws the map.

Pog is now guarding Nistamatsin while he draws the map. Then he'll grab Nistamatsin and get out. Take Ten for this action.

Pog proposes to look in the rooms first and see if they are assiemet... mirrah... left-not-right, so Nistamatsin doesn't enter a room and stab himself because it's not his room.

Pog asks Geoffrey to cure Nistamatsin when he's done being silly.
>>
No. 838536 ID: 3abd97

rolled 5, 1, 4 = 10

>>838062
>Scouting
"How long are you planning to be away, Nin?" (So if the scouting party is overdue, we can mount a rescue or something).

>Rhea is now the party's quartermaster and any requests to use the subterrene must go through her
*Goblin salute*

>as much fresh bread as Rhea can cook given the short notice
Roll for breadmaking is back here, >>835967 , and now that I've got spells figured out, let's retroactively say Rhea bolstered the bread with Abstemiousness so it'll keep.

>Nin is baffled by his companions' lack of desire to throw themselves into mortal danger for the possible reward of wealth and power
Rhea will see what she can do to motivate her teammates before it is time for a more proper expedition into the dungeon.

>Azure is loathe to leave Pog again, but she realizes she has a very serious attention deficit disorder. She might have wings for scouting, but they might fly her into the jaws of death again.
Rhea will point out that if Azure doubts her own judgement, she has several soldiers and military types in the group to rely on. And why should she fear death when her fire is rekindled each time it is extinguished? She can more safely explore than any of our friends!

>Kent and Isaiah are staying behind, unless someone can make a point about why they should come. It’s not so much that they don’t want to go- they’ve just got better things to do.
Rhea will remind Isaiah there are lots of reasons he would be useful on future trips. He can ask Hanspur for maps, and his body is safe from many dangers. He does not bleed, and he does not breathe.

As for Kent, jumping and climbing is surely helpful in ruins. And if we are to restore the hospital, there are ancient secrets in need of repair and an [engineer] to understand them! I think I'm just gonna denote slipping into golbinese with brackets.

>what do
Might be good to prepare and cast Read Weather on the day the scouting mission is planned.

>Might also be worth considering what other supplies you want.
For longer term trips, Rhea might want to prepare a jar of preserved eyes.

Would it be worth asking Lt.Cmdr. Jalkaren Blessed-Is-The-Light to donate a vial of blood for future Celestial Healing? (I'm not strickly sure how much better or not the regen effect compares to straight up Least True Healing).

A ritual for preserving ingredients so the eyes and/or blood don't spoil seems like something Rhea should be capable of.
>>
No. 838565 ID: 094652

>>838536
>why should she fear death
Azure is quick to explain that she is unique among her peers in that she has experienced more deaths than birthdays. This has given her a very clear understanding of how lethal the world really is; even among the valiant halls of order and royalty, there's always an artistic serial killer, or some negligent broken scaffolding that hasn't been fixed to cut costs, or a supposed paragon of justice who might experience a blemish on their perfect marks one day, have a panicking crisis, and get the ball rolling towards Anti-Paladinhood. Sometimes, she would be locked up, tortured, constantly worrying that her captor would realize what she was. And of course, burning alive always hurts; the pain doesn't numb over repeated immolation because her body is restored completely, which includes the nerves that usually die off physically and spiritually after suffering extreme pain. Honestly, she's not sure how many seconds of agonizing pain she forgets after falling unconscious, but there's still enough to convince her not to commit suicide as a party trick.

Then there's all the stuff that could happen to her ashes. If Pog can catch them and find a place to hunker down, she's not afraid at all. But last time, she found herself in a river. If those ashes had submerged on the next waterfall...

In case Rhea is wondering, Azure keeps her powers as an open secret (like the Bristlebacks) because the rumors get blurry and unreliable between districts, let alone cities. I mean, what louse wouldn't want to claim they out-charmed and slept with an immortal phoenix girl? Makes it easier to play off the From The Ashes power as a bard trick, especially when others realize her feathers are painted red. Rhea's a priestess of Fire so she can be trusted with this kind of thing.

There's a lot Azure still doesn't know about her strange power or where she came from. And honestly, she leaves that kind of speculation to Hore. She has towns to seduce and cities to sleep with.

>Azure as management
Generally, most of the party have their own agendas and only need daily checkups. But in particular, Wendy and Malkov seem to have hit a writer's block on what to do in the open.

If they haven't done so already, Azure recommends Wendy and Malkov sign up for language training. Maybe not now, but after the hospital is cleaned. For now, Wendy will foster relations with the rest of the town by offering her healing services, and as someone to talk to. Malkov will protect her, and look for anything suspicious. Fostering relationships with the town is only temporary and not extremely productive, but in the event something goes horribly wrong, the town won't simply forget about the latest band of intruders adventurers to pass through.

Rhea's art involves intense heat. Azure recommends a quick trial run in the art of smoked meats; she can talk to the embers and see how they feel when they're baked into succulent jerky. She should also talk with the locals and ask for tips on quality ingredients. Deslena supplies the chickens and Adebrin supplies the fish, talking to them might get Rhea tips and a small discount.

Of all the people to take the angel's lesson, Helen's the one who has the most insight. She should look into the language further, do some research or possibly ask the angel for further lessons. Azure will assist as best she can in her spare time. Kent can also focus on this, or work on researching the Subterrene.

Isiah might need to recharge his prayers. Azure doesn't really know how he does this, so he can do whatever, but he'd better be fully charged when the dungeon crawl begins.

Azure's main focus will be researching the local Gnoll tribe. If Nistamatsin is willing later, they might be able to confront the Gnolls, see if they know more than they realize. If the opportunity presents (and nobody Hore or Azure knows is there), they could even fight the Gnolls and gain intel on where the local bandit gangs are, then fight off the bandits and reclaim the area for a reward. Or they could even convince the Gnolls to get jobs; as Hore once explained, Gnoll laziness comes from the realization that all your hard work can be stolen or used against you, but enslave another, and their work is yours alone (Which Hore has commented on as idiotic and short-sighted, as it leads to less efficiency and invisible strings instead of visible ones). If they can convince the Gnoll tribe of a particular type of freelance job that's easy to do and hard to get cheated out of (and screw the pay, because tribes live off scraps and feel rich in a middle-class environment), then yes it is possible. In theory. Maybe.

Azure asks for feedback.
>>
No. 838582 ID: af6e04

>(Helen) should look into the language further
Helen says that she'd love to learn more of the language of the Derro when she has the time. Due to the nature of her curse, she can't explain or convey any sort of complicated ideas to others and so would be a poor choice for studying specialized knowledge and teaching it to the rest of the group. She also says she's studying how to protect everyone from the 'bad air' we've been warned of. (still waiting for that to resolve, but I think not enough in-world time has passed)
>>
No. 838608 ID: af6e04

rolled 4, 6, 2 = 12

You'll have to forgive the lack of artistry

>Pog asks Nistamatsin why Nistamatsin stabbed Nistamatsin's hands.
Yes, the explanation makes about as much sense as you'd expect.

>Then he'll grab Nistamatsin and get out.
Nistamatsin allows himself to be dragged out, after he turns the corner and takes a peek through those archways. We'll try the pentacle room next. Makes sense to be methodical about this, right?

>Pog proposes to look in the rooms first
"If you wish, but you must use the pole to check for traps. You can give the spear to Geoffrey." Guess this means a switch up in our marching order.

>Pog asks Geoffrey to cure Nistamatsin when he's done being silly.
Not gonna make a separate post for this, but Geoffrey says that the demon'll be fine and he's not gonna waste his soul motes.
>>
No. 838610 ID: af6e04
File 150865004932.png - (12.27KB , 543x540 , mouthofdoom1.png )
838610

And here it is, actually!
>>
No. 838657 ID: 094652

rolled 4, 1, 3 = 8

>>838608
Pog does the thing.
>>
No. 838683 ID: bb8f20

>>838394
Is there any other loot to be found in the desk? No stray copper pieces or tools? And is there any scroll cases to store the documents and scroll?

So, the date for subject in cell 3 states it was a week ago? Valeno will give a knock on the wall near the teleporters of where isolation cell 3 would be, and wait, say, 30 seconds for a response. And repeat it a couple times.

If there is no response, either due to depth of the wall, or (most likely) the patient being dead, it would be time to move on. Valeno will inspect the teleporter that looks it's had the most traffic. That will probably be the one to take.
>>
No. 838685 ID: bb8f20

rolled 6, 1, 4 = 11

>>838683
OOC:Good lord am I bad at this dice thing or what?
>>
No. 838689 ID: 3abd97

>>838565
But if you know how lethal the world can be, can you in good conscience let others walk headfirst into danger you could survive?
>>
No. 839116 ID: d36af7

>>838608
>pentacle room next
>>838657
>Pog does the thing
Pentacle door doesn't open onto a room at all, but rather a hallway. To the right it ends at another door after about ten feet, to the left it continues out beyond the limit of lantern-light, with more doors spaced irregularly along both sides.
>>
No. 839118 ID: d36af7

>>838683
>>838685
No coinage. Reasonable selection of basic office supplies, but nothing really ruggedized for travel. Documents can be tucked into a folder made of heavier paper and tied up with twine so they won't be scattered or damaged as easily.

No response to the tapping.

>which teleporter has the most traffic
>rolled 6, 1, 4 = 11
Judging by the cumulative effect of scuff marks polishing the stone floor, 'most traffic' would be the one opposite the isolation cells, but the path of that was to and from the cells by way of the desks. People who came in the way you did seemed to mainly head straight to the stone hand on the opposite wall, bypassing the desks. Floor on the diagonals is relatively unworn.
>>
No. 839140 ID: 413d43

rolled 4, 4, 1 = 9

>>839116
Nin tells Pog that this room doesn't feel quite as lopsided as the last. We should check out that door to the right.

(updated map will have to wait til I get home tonight)
>>
No. 839307 ID: 094652

>>839140
Pog does not understand the concepts of search algorithms and big-O notation, but he can count. And if Nistamatsin continues this 'scouting mission' any further than three rooms away from the entrance, he's not going to follow orders any longer. There should be enough nearby rooms to scout in a whole day, too far ahead and the doors might be magic-sealed behind them.

>>838689
Azure wasn't paying attention, she was busy calculating the approximate insurance fees for the party. And by insurance fees, I mean the expected costs to resurrect party members.

Azure explains she used to have enough gold to resurrect any of her party members, but she's spent most and lost the remainder. And the number of actual team member deaths she has experienced is in the single digits; a childhood of business management training has given her the insight she neeeded to find and hire employees with high survival rates.
>>
No. 839322 ID: 3abd97

>I mean the expected costs to resurrect party members.
This is what I was talking about, silly. If you're willing to stand between your allies and danger, the only cost to revive yourself is pain, time, and faith.

Lt.Cmdr. Jalkaren Blessed-Is-The-Light's price for reviving people probably wouldn't be gold, anyways.
>>
No. 839332 ID: d36af7

>>839322
>probably wouldn't be gold
It's not a question of probability. Any and all injury, morbidity, or mortality suffered by allied forces in the course of honorably pursuing the restoration of that hospital WILL be miraculously restored, to the full extent of her ability to do so safely (with priority, when necessary, given to those who have been more consistently effective and/or less self-destructive), and she will not accept - much less demand - coin in return for that service.
>>829756
>any redistribution of material wealth (other than what's directly necessary for her mission) would violate her current standing orders

"Honorably" in this context still allows quite a bit of latitude for tactical pragmatism, the main point of concern is unwillingness to be an accessory to organ harvesting, medical experimentation on prisoners, or similar torturous atrocities.
>>
No. 839346 ID: af6e04

rolled 4, 1, 2 = 7

>"How long are you planning to be away, Nin?"
Keep forgetting to answer this. Didn't really bring enough water for a multi-day trip, so Nin will say "Expect us back two sunrises after this one."

>>839307
>And if Nistamatsin continues this 'scouting mission' any further than...
Nin interrupts Pog's sudden meticulous streak by impatiently snatching back the ten foot pole and going through the door.
>>
No. 839353 ID: af6e04
File 150889473912.png - (14.44KB , 579x580 , mouthofdoom2.png )
839353

And here we are!
>>
No. 839488 ID: b45626

rolled 4, 2, 3 = 9

>>839118
Figuring the most travelled path is the quickest way out, Valeno will take the teleporter opposite where they entered....

.....Hopefully this won't be a terrible mistake.
>>
No. 839814 ID: d36af7

>>839488
Does Valeno have a light source rigged up at this point? If not, the far side of the teleporter is totally dark, so are you going to follow the wall left, or right, or wander off across the floor more or less perpendicular to the wall, or what?

>>839346
On the far side of the door there's a refreshingly symmetrical room, albeit on a diagonal plane. It's thirty feet square apart from a fifth wall cutting across the northwest corner, with an elaborate mosaic depicting various plants and animals (most of which are immediately recognizable as native to the area) arrayed around a dark-skinned elvenoid figure. The figure is carrying something, but whatever it was, the tiles representing it were chipped away some time ago, exposing plaster beneath. There's some water damage near the ceiling, too.

Only obvious exit aside from the way you came in is another door in the middle of the south wall.
>>
No. 840077 ID: af6e04

rolled 5, 6, 4 = 15

>>839814
>a dark-skinned elvenoid figure.
Can I roll for knowledge?

>There's some water damage near the ceiling, too.
Interesting. Cracks in the stone or just tiles falling apart because of eroding plaster? Can I identify any source of the leak? What's this place actually made of? I'll take a closer look at that section that was chipped off too. Everybody knows that mosaics mean secret doors!

I won't spend long messing around in this nice symmetrical room, but hopefully long enough to center myself. Pog is right, there are too many branching paths to keep rushing through the first door we see. We'll soon make our way back to the lobby and check rooms in the following order: goat face, hand, skull, wolf's head.
>>
No. 840097 ID: d36af7

rolled 5 = 5

>>840077
>knowledge
>rolled 5, 6, 4 = 15
Looks kinda like... one of the barmaids back at the inn, maybe? Can't remember her name.
>source of the leak
Presumably rainwater filtering down through the earth above.
>secret doors
There does indeed seem to be a hollow space behind the mosaic, but sticking a hand in there gets you bitten and mildly poisoned. Then, due to their nest having been disturbed by something delicious, {number I just rolled} giant centipedes emerge and attack.
>>
No. 840098 ID: 094652

rolled 2, 4, 1 = 7

Pog begins rage!

Pog yanks Nistamatsin away from the centipedes and hammers his pickax in one of the chinks between their exoskeleton segments!

Even if they bite back, a mug of poison in his veins isn't even going to make someone with Pog's constitution twitch!
>>
No. 840104 ID: af6e04

rolled 1, 4, 5 = 10

>>840097
>sticking a hand in there gets you bitten
Enough to draw blood?

Lacking a weapon in hand, Nin tries to take the centipede's face off.
>>
No. 840106 ID: af6e04

rolled 6, 1, 5 = 12

Geoffrey stabs whatever gets close with the magic spear.
>>
No. 840127 ID: d36af7

Pog smashes three 'pedes, Geoffrey cautiously pokes a fourth with the spear's curling flame which causes the poor bug to more or less explode, Nistamatsin acquires a new disguise and thereby incapacitates the last one.
>Enough to draw blood?
As implied by the ability to inject poison, yes. Nin's taken 1 hp of injury and 2 dex damage.
>>
No. 840204 ID: af6e04

rolled 3, 5, 5 = 13

>>840127
Nin tries to bandage himself up before the room gets too bloody.

>Nistamatsin acquires a new disguise and thereby incapacitates the last one
I've never worn a centipede's face before. How's it look on me?

>Nin's taken 1 hp of injury and 2 dex damage.
I suppose Geoffrey can't do much about the poison til it's taken its course.

>There does indeed seem to be a hollow space behind the mosaic
Anything in there but a centipede nest?
>>
No. 840209 ID: d36af7

>>840204
>Nin tries to bandage himself up before the room gets too bloody.
The wound clotted up almost instantly. Probably a beneficial side effect of the poison or saliva or something.
>How's it look on me?
Like a completely non-anthropomorphic centipede is somehow standing upright, wearing clothes, and talking.
>Anything in there but a centipede nest?
'bout ten gallons of fresh blood. The hole is only a few inches wide, so you can't exactly crawl in there and search for loot.
>>
No. 840256 ID: b45626

rolled 2, 5, 3 = 10

>>839814
If there is a way to rig a light source that can be quickly covered or turned off, then definitely. But if not, then going into the darkness Valeno goes. Hugging to the left wall seems to be the best course of action, as it served them well before.
>>
No. 840261 ID: 094652

Pog's rage ends as he watches the still-living faceless giant centipede flail about helplessly. It's funny. He figures the centipede can be captured alive and reared for its poison... or killed fresh for whatever Rhea's cooking.

Speaking of extra centipedes, Pog realizes Nistamatsin now has a centipede's face. Pog suggests they use that face to call for any remaining centipedes, then bust open the tiled wall when they're sure the remaining centipedes are deaf or dead or some other thing that starts with 'dea'. At no point does it occur to Pog of how shortsighted his plan is.
>>
No. 840319 ID: af6e04

rolled 1, 3, 3 = 7

>>840261
>killed fresh for whatever Rhea's cooking.
Well... maybe Rhea can make a centipede taste good. But we're burdened enough as it is.

>remaining centipedes are deaf or dead
>'bout ten gallons of fresh blood.
Guess they're probably drowning if they're still alive.

>bust open the tiled wall
This piece of art from an old civilization? A stunning display of mortal creativity and ingenuity? It would be a crime to destroy this mosaic. An act of senseless destruction. We must do it immediately. Besides, clearing out the hospital includes clearing out all the deadly centipedes, right?

Nin tells Geoffrey to stand by and hold the door open in case we need to make a speedy retreat. Then he'll ask Pog to do what he does best.
>>
No. 840320 ID: d36af7

>>840256
Wall continues five feet, turns 90 degrees right, thirty feet, turns 90 degrees right, thirty feet, and then Valeno almost falls into a pit trap. Fortunately going slowly in the dark has some advantages; when you're navigating mostly by touch and echo anyway, visual concealment of a trap doesn't make it any harder to notice. Checking around the edge of the pit, it's 8 feet wide out of a 10 foot wide corridor, leaving a 2 foot wide walkway along the right-hand wall.

>>840319
>This piece of art from an old civilization? A stunning display of mortal creativity and ingenuity? It would be a crime to destroy this mosaic.
Lt. Cmdr. Jalkaren Blessed-Is-The-Light is not physically present, but apparently has some means of scrying and thereby extending a whisperweb beyond conventional range. She whispers that Nistamatsin's estimate of what would be a crime is accurate in this case, since the mission to restore this former hospital to working condition obviously includes preserving or repairing original furnishings wherever possible. The mosaic must not be demolished.
>>
No. 840340 ID: af6e04

rolled 2, 5, 1 = 8

>The mosaic must not be demolished.
Nistamatsin mutters for Pog to forget that last request and goes scurrying back to the entrance to check out that goat head door.
>>
No. 840346 ID: fc3fc0

>>838536
As Rhea goes around trying to encourage everyone to enter the Mouth of Doom, it comes up that Kent and Isaiah didn't realize that the dungeon and Hospital were one and the same; likely due to Isaiah being preoccupied sulking, and Kent getting distracted by everything shiny Nin and Rhea brought. Kent suggests that they spend the day preparing, and leave on the morrow to go join the group with some fresh medicine and supplies- Rhea too, since she has so many shiny baubles that will no doubt be useful in such a dangerous setting.

If Rhea decides to come with, which Kent encourages she do given that she is probably going to be an invaluable asset to the team, despite any ongoing work she may be doing, she should post her inventory and such in a separate post since I don't want to speak for her. In case she needs more articulate encouragement, Kent's basic argument boils down to:
A) Super fire power is good for disinfecting wounds, starting fires, providing light, killing and cooking monsters, and avoiding dangerous traps the rest of us might struggle with
B) Culinary prowess will lift spirits and keep us in better shape to carry out our goals
C) The rest of us are leaving behind our interesting or important jobs, it'd be nice if you joined us
D) You have powerful artifacts which will be helpful in our quest
E) You're good company, and we'd miss you if we went alone! Strength of numbers and all that! Your optimism and sunny charm will make it that much more berable
Do it for the sun? Or your mom? Or because I'm asking nicely? It's clear kent was running out of convincing points a bit ago, but is generally miming and writing down various other redundant or silly reasons Rhea should come.

Isaiah brings:
left hip: a week's worth of nonrechargeable waterproof ration-tablets
right hip: Jug of Oil
left shoulder: Big Hammer
right shoulder: Canvas
chest/neck: Lantern
top of head: Iron Statuette, depicting a rat standing on water
hidden somewhere uncomfortable: Rope, tucked within the armor

Kent brings:
Left Hip: Medicine? need advice on how to obtain/articulate this inventory item, but hopefully trading favors with Isaiah's help is enough to get some for of medical supplies
Right Hip: The Several Known Languages: a Written Primer on the Nuances of Civilized Communications.
Left Shoulder: Dried Fruit
Right Shoulder: Water
Chest/neck: Kent’s Guide to Artificing, a compendium of learned and found notes/knowledge on engineering and artificing, compiled by Kent Vogner, with over half the information being sourced from Kent's former mentor, the Serpentfolk Omeyocantli of Valusia
Head: Plate Mail, modified to include a removable face plate with dark goggles, to help protect against changes in light, and make them more difficult to identify.
Somewhere uncomfortable: Tools for Field Surgery
>>
No. 840358 ID: d36af7

>>840340
Describe your procedure for approaching the goat-head door.

>>840346
It's possible to carry more stuff than the equipment you started with, y'know. That represented various limitations including salvage and haste. Now that you've got time and money (well, Geoffrey has money, and based on the precedent with Nistamatsin he's willing to loan some of it out to teammates for their equipment expenses, within reason) and are back in town, backpacks and tool belts can be carefully arranged, other containers acquired or customized. You could even load up hundreds of pounds of gear on a wheelbarrow or pack-mule.
>medical supplies?
Ulman Dark wouldn't be running a very good "one-stop shop" if he didn't even stock the basic stuff you'd need for refilling a first aid kit.
>>
No. 840364 ID: af6e04

rolled 2, 4, 5 = 11

>Describe your procedure for approaching the goat-head door.

Same procedure as always. Prod it a bit with the ten foot pole, check for traps, then turn the handle. I'll use my left hand this time. I'll wait for Pog and Geoffrey to catch up first, of course.
>>
No. 840375 ID: d36af7

>>840364
After the prodding phase, when you step forward to inspect more closely, the alcove's entire floor turns out to be a pit trap. Only ten feet deep, fortunately, and nothing interesting at the bottom apart from that new centipede-face-shaped dent in the stone floor.

Nistamatsin is not even slightly injured by the fall.
>>
No. 840436 ID: 094652

>>840346
Azure practices her song and dance routine for the upcoming dungeon. She encourages the party for the adventure tomorrow with her latest performance. And does a personal checkup of everyone going to make sure nobody misplaces anything.

Azure has a purse of silver thanks to Pog's lumberjack temp job and her own liason with the sailors. She'll go to the market in the evening and buy some supplies. Request shopping list in QuestDis plz.

... Of course, they're going to need someone trustworthy to guard the subterrene and all the expensive loot they're leaving behind. The obvious choice is Lieutenant Commander Jalkaren, but that means no divine-class spells.

>>840375
Crap, did Pog bring any rope? Oh wait, Geoffrey did. Pog does the pulling while Geoffrey is on watch.

Take ten.
>>
No. 840586 ID: af6e04

rolled 4, 4, 2 = 10

>>840375
>new centipede-face-shaped dent in the stone floor.
Wait are you speaking metaphorically or did I actually dent the floor? It's hard to tell sometimes between all the jet powered apes and time travel.

>Nistamatsin is not even slightly injured by the fall.
That's good, though something tells me the statue lost a bit of its value.

>Pog does the pulling while Geoffrey is on watch.
Roll to climb?
>>
No. 840596 ID: b45626

rolled 5, 5, 6 = 16

>>840320
Listen to make sure nothing is down in the pit trap that might want to eat Valeno. Otherwise, carefully skulk along the narrow walkway, making sure to be quiet. (I don't know if it needs to be stated, but Valeno is storing quite a bit of poison saliva right now, just in case things get.... hairy.)
>>
No. 840618 ID: d36af7

>>840586
>roll to climb
>rolled 4, 4, 2 = 10
You're back out of the pit safely, but that still leaves an inconvenient section of open space in front of the door.

>did I actually dent the floor?
Yes.

The centipede's bite injured the palm of Nistamatsin's hand, but not the back of the same hand, even though the mandible was gripping both, and thinking back, you remember that the statue's hands are positioned such that the surface of the palm isn't exposed. Accordingly, there isn't really a surface on the statue to which such wounds could have been accurately transferred. Close study of the statue's pose might reveal other such weak points.

>>840596
After four or five feet of progress along the ledge, the floor shifts slightly under Valeno's feet with an ominous click. There's a soft whirring or ticking sort of noise from up ahead, so soft you might just be imagining it.

>>840436
>shopping list
This might be a good place to start. https://tgchan.org/kusaba/questarch/res/730630.html#733271
Copying some stuff from GURPS Dungeon Fantasy:

Minimal Delver’s Kit
This is the suggested bare minimum for short-term travel and wilderness survival in environments that aren’t terribly demanding. It includes just enough provisions and basic comforts to avoid penalties for sleeping on rocks and eating bark for a few days, light for a couple of hours underground, a little rope for light-duty climbing and binding, and a bag to hold it all. This kit’s main advantage is cheapness – all but the poorest delvers can afford it. Penny-pinchers with the Survival skill might be tempted to forego buying even this much (why buy tasteless dried rations when you can trap tasty fresh game?), but the GM may impose penalties if traveling under harsh conditions, and everyone should have climbing gear and lighting for nighttime and subterranean adventures.
Minimal Delver’s Kit
$100, 20.5 lbs.
• Blanket (p. B288) [Torso] $20, 4 lbs.
• Canteen (p. B288) [Torso] $10, 3 lbs.
• Personal Basics (p. B288) [Sack or Backpack] $5, 1 lb.
• Rations ×12 (p. B288) [Sack or Backpack] $24, 6 lbs.
• Rope, 3/8” (10 yards) (p. B288) [Sack or Backpack] Supports 300 lbs. $5, 1.5 lbs.
• Sack (1, p. 24) [Torso] Holds 40 lbs. $30, 3 lbs.
• Torch ×2 (p. B288) [Sack or Backpack] $6, 2 lbs.

Deluxe Delver’s Kit
This add-on to the minimal delver’s kit offers a more comprehensive loadout for the well-prepared adventurer. It provides better lighting, climbing gear, and protection from the elements; superior storage; extra provisions; and welcome redundancy.
Deluxe Delver’s Kit
+$559, +40.2 lbs.
• Backpack, Frame (p. B288) [Torso] $100, 10 lbs.
• Bull’s-Eye Lantern (1, p. 26) [Sack or Backpack] $100, 2 lbs.
• Delver’s Webbing (1, p. 25) [Torso] $160, 3 lbs.
• Grapnel (p. B288) [Sack or Backpack] Throw to 2¥ST yards. $80, 2 lbs.
• Hooded Cape (8, p. 17) [Torso] Can be used as a light cloak in combat (DB 1). $22, 2.2 lbs.
• Lantern Oil, 5 pints (p. B288) [Sack or Webbing] $10, 5 lbs.
• Rations ×6 (p. B288) [Sack or Backpack] $12, 3 lbs.
• Rope, 3/4” (10 yards) (p. B288) [Sack or Backpack] Supports 1,100 lbs. $25, 5 lbs.
• Sleeping Fur (p. B288) [Sack or Backpack] $50, 8 lbs.

Group Kit
Not everyone needs his own shovel or first aid kit, but no team of adventurers should be without a few such items! This kit contains accessories that every group ought to have on hand but that don’t obviously fit a specific template. Consider obtaining one per three or four party members. In the wilderness, this stuff can be loaded on a beast of burden. In the dungeon, it may be necessary to divvy it up and distribute it among several people, unless there’s a lightly armored barbarian who doesn’t mind slinging it on his back.
Group Kit
+$365, +80 lbs.
• Crowbar, 3’ (p. B289) [Sack or Webbing] $20, 3 lbs.
• First Aid Kit (p. B289) [Sack or Backpack] $50, 2 lbs.
• Group Basics (p. B288) [Sack or Backpack] $50, 20 lbs.
• Pickaxe (p. B289) [Sack or Backpack] $15, 8 lbs.
• Pole, 10’ (p. B288) [Torso] $8, 5 lbs.
• Sack ×2 (1, p. 24) [Torso] Holds 40 lbs. $60, 6 lbs.
• Shovel (p. B289) [Sack or Backpack] $12, 6 lbs.
• Tent, 4-Man (p. B288) [Sack or Backpack] $150, 30 lbs.

Anything else you're looking for, or want more information on, just ask.
>>
No. 840647 ID: af6e04

rolled 4, 4, 3 = 11

>actually dented the floor
Huh. Is it more malleable than normal stone? I'll try to hit the bottom of the pit with the pole to see. Only other possibility I can think of is that the centipede's face has some sort of stone molding property. Any other indentations from the rest of my body, or just the face?

>Close study of the statue's pose might reveal other such weak points.
When did Rasmus say he was leaving?

>still leaves an inconvenient section of open space in front of the door.
Pog should be big enough to carry each of us across on his shoulders and climb out of the pit unassisted.
>>
No. 840669 ID: d36af7

>>840647
>Pog should be big enough to carry each of us across on his shoulders and climb out of the pit unassisted.
The door on the far side of the pit seems to be stuck. Pog manages to rip the handle out of it's mounting, but the surrounding door won't budge.
>>
No. 840711 ID: f3e670

rolled 2, 2, 2 = 6

Revised shopping list/Inventory:

3 pounds of Marbles, 1 Silver 3 lbs
Deluxe Lantern 3 Silver 4 lbs
80 Yards of Silk rope 2 silver 12 lbs
Crossbow 7.5 Silver 6 lbs
50 Broadhead Bolts, 25 Bodkin Bolts, 7.5 Silver n/a
Signal Whistle and Hand Mirror 1 silver n/a
20 pitons, 1 Silver 10 lbs
Healers Kit 10 Silver 10 lbs
Big Knife, 2 Silver 1 lbs
1 Bear Trap, 7 Silver 11 lbs
Grappling hook 4 silver 2 lbs
Backpack, Frame 5 Silver 10 lbs
Group Basics, 12 rations, 2 torches, 1 crowbar, 5 silver 28 lbs
Blanket 1 silver 4 lbs
3 silver for some anti-centipede poison maybe? Making it and even 3 gold would be nice, so any sort of preventative medicine or anti-venom in the 3 silver range would be useful.

What's Delver's Webbing? Is it like mesh rated to hang your gear off of? Because that's originally what I was going for with the chains I bought for Riv- bunch of links to hang gear off of, and extra uses on top.

Revised inventory:

Isaiah brings:
left hip: a week's worth of nonrechargeable waterproof ration-tablets
right hip: Jug of Oil
left shoulder: Big Hammer
right shoulder: Deluxe Lantern
chest/neck: Backpack
top of head: Iron Statuette, depicting a rat standing on water
hidden somewhere uncomfortable: Group Basics

1.5 pounds of Marbles, pack
Canvas, pack
Rope + silk rope, pack
Rations, pack
Dried Fruit, pack
Torches, pack
Crowbar, pack
Signal Whistle and hand mirror pack
10 Pitons, pack
Healers kit, pack
Water, pack
Bear trap, pack
Grappling hook, pack
Blanket, pack


Kent brings:
Left Hip: Crossbow
Right Hip: The Several Known Languages: a Written Primer on the Nuances of Civilized Communications.
Left Shoulder: Crossbow Bolts
Right Shoulder: Big Knife
Chest/neck: Kent’s Guide to Artificing, a compendium of learned and found notes/knowledge on engineering and artificing, compiled by Kent Vogner, with over half the information being sourced from Kent's former mentor, the Serpentfolk Omeyocantli of Valusia
Head: Plate Mail, modified to include a removable face plate with dark goggles, to help protect against changes in light, and make them more difficult to identify.
Somewhere uncomfortable: Tools for Field Surgery

Left Behind:
10 pitons
1.5 pounds of marbles


By my estimations Isaiah, who's carrying the pack and most of the gear should be carrying around 120 pounds or so? The new gear in the pack should be 87.5, before the water which, assuming a gallon container, should be a little over 8, rounding it up to 96. Gallon of oil makes that 105, and then there's canvas, fruit, and a big hammer, so I'm guesstimating but hopefully thats at the threshold of what he can reasonably carry for a day trip to the mouth before they can distribute the load more evenly.

There's still time for Rhea and Azure to join the late train to the dungeon- might be useful to have a few extra eyes and ears to establish a base room to keep the gear in, preform medical procedures, and generally keep the route out open and safe.

Rolling just in case there's anything I need to roll for.
>>
No. 840753 ID: 3abd97

rolled 2, 5, 2 = 9

>Kent suggests that they spend the day preparing, and leave on the morrow to go join the group with some fresh medicine and supplies
Rhea will agree to this, so long as the Read Weather she case before the scout group set off ( >>838536 ) didn't come back with something we don't want to travel through.

...although setting off with the whole group at once would have made distribution of supplies easier. (Pog probably has the biggest carrying capacity, easy).

>In order to reduce ambiguity, gimme a complete inventory of what you're bringing along and who's carrying it.
Rhea's got:

* Cinnamon Incense
* Cookware (limited set of pots and pans)
* Greekfire
* Bronze statuette (representation of her fire-divinity mother)
* Knives (of a type more suited for cooking or gathering than combat)
* Jug of oil
* Tools for lockpicking and field surgery (and dessert preparation)
Bamboo kindling
* 3 pendants taken from adventuring priests of foreign gods. (The silliness below is due to a crit failed religious lore check).
* The Functional set of relics (charged with an eye before leaving)
* Jar of preserved eyeballs (Tethru and time willing)
* Vial of deva Blood (for Celestial Healing, if Lt.Cmdr. Jalkaren Blessed-Is-The-Light is willing to donate blood for this purpose when asked politely)

Let's say since Rhea last went adventuring, she replaced or repaired her damaged frypan, used up the bamboo firewood, and no longer has that gummed up mess of cave fisher filaments.

Might want to add a pack or similar for easier carrying all that gear, and maybe throw in some food / rations prepared in advance? Not sure I should really take much more though, I sort of expect the small goblin is close to carrying capacity here.

(Actually having Rhea prepare rations and stuff that will keep while she has access to the inn's kitchen and bolstering them with Abstemiousness is might be more cost effective than buying everything premade)?

Prepared spells for the day pending.
>>
No. 840762 ID: 3abd97

>Bamboo kindling
>(The silliness below is due to a crit failed religious lore check)
Ignore these copy-paste errors in the item list, I meant to edit these bits out.
>>
No. 840767 ID: 95d14e

>>840753
Isaiah could have easily cast mending on your pot, and Pog cut up firewood. Don’t know if you wanted to salvage something useful from the filaments but that could be possible as well.
>>
No. 840841 ID: fc3fc0

>>840711
Forgot to mention the bracelet- Kent definitely brought that
>>
No. 840951 ID: af6e04

rolled 4, 1, 5 = 10

>>840669
Well we can't just break it down as per Lt.Cmdr. Jalkaren Blessed-Is-The-Light's orders. Might as well go check out the hand door instead.

Prod, check for traps, open.
>>
No. 840957 ID: af6e04
File 150934353975.png - (19.66KB , 800x800 , mouthofdoom3.png )
840957

And...
>>
No. 841020 ID: 15d9e4

rolled 3, 6, 2 = 11

>>840618
Valeno doesn't imagine they can go much faster without risking falling into the pit. But will keep tabs on the pressure plate. With the subtlety of the sounds, Valeno guesses that even in bright light they wouldn't know what was activated.

Regardless, have to push on ahead. Keep going slowly, being extra careful of other traps. Specifically pressure plates and trip wires.

"What kind of hospital has traps?" Valeno muses.
>>
No. 841037 ID: d36af7

>>840711
>What's Delver's Webbing?
Belt and suspenders with pouches for 20 lbs. of potions, gadgets, knives, etc. Readying a carried item takes just one Ready maneuver – and is a free action with a suitable Fast-Draw roll. Gives +1 to DX and Fast-Draw rolls to reach these items.

>centipede antidote
One silver, half a pint per dose to negate the ongoing effects of a single specific poison. For best results against something fast-acting you should drink it at least a couple minutes, but no more than an hour, before being exposed.

Six silver for a basic alchemical healing potion that heals 1d6 damage, or seven silver for stuff he calls "paut" which restores 4 FP spent on magic, both also half a pint per dose, and too many of those healing potions in one day is hard on the kidneys. Potions that function directly by magic rather than alchemy are only an ounce per dose, have no safe-use-per-day limit, and can revive the dead, but are orders of magnitude more expensive.

Ulman Dark is somewhat of a stingy bastard, so you'll also need containers for any potions you're not going to drink on site: one silver gets you four half-pint vials made of clear, corrosion-resistant glass, or ten clay bottles which hold a full pint (two doses) each. Clay bottles weigh half a pound each, glass vials a quarter pound.

Three more silver and one pound for a belt or bandoleer with four slots, each holding one such clay bottle or two vials readily accessible but safe under hardened leather and padding, so they won't randomly break from minor mishaps such as falling down a pit or being shot with a hail of darts.

>75 crossbow bolts
That would weigh 4.5 pounds, in addition to significant bulk. Hip quiver can only hold 20 at once, and if you just cram the rest in a backpack they'll probably end up bent (and thus badly inaccurate). If you're looking to spend a lot of money on ammo, you could invest in quality over quantity: 5x cost for competition-grade bodkins with better quality fletching for +1 to hit, or 'devil-slayer' broadheads with silver plating over finer quality steel for +1 damage and possibly other useful effects against anything vulnerable to silver. If you're feeling really extravagant, 20x cost (that is, two silver per shot) for a bolt made entirely of black meteoric iron, which is immune to magic. Rips through defensive spells like they're not even there.

On the subject of Isaiah's provisions, has he been living off the nonrechargeables during that week of study, or receiving worship by some other means? There aren't any NPC beggars readily available, but Azure might have been able to leverage her courtesan skills while other students were sleeping.

>>841020
Ledge is only 10' long total. Past the pit, there's another seven yards of straight hallway, then a row of indentations across the width of the floor. They're six inches apart, and each is half an inch wide, two or three inches deep, tapering to a point like a tooth-mark in the stone. No tripwire or other apparent trigger mechanism. Investigate further, hold back until that whirring stops, or step across right away?

>>840951
>Well we can't just break it down as per Lt.Cmdr. Jalkaren Blessed-Is-The-Light's orders.
Taking nonfunctional doors off their hinges is acceptable, you just need to be careful with the load-bearing walls and any irreplaceable artwork or books. Retrieving, rather than obliterating or devouring, the relatively intact remains of any of the original staff you happen across would also be preferable.
>hand door
>Prod, check for traps,
>rolled 4, 1, 5 = 10
Another 10' deep pit. Nobody falls in this time.
>>
No. 841049 ID: 3d2d5f

rolled 3, 1, 5 = 9

>As for the debate of whether the head in a jar will work as a backup... that's a question for in-character knowledge skills. Occultism, Theology (any religion which has any sort of official opinion on phoenixes and/or the afterlife [...]
Fire priestess seems a good authority to speak on pheonixes, and Rhea has the first hand advantage of being able to listen to Azure's blood mutter.

And there's also the option of consulting with Lt.Cmdr. Jalkaren Blessed-Is-The-Light, the healer who would be involved.

Theology and etc check: does Rhea think the head could be used to resurrect Azure if her ashes were prevented from rekindling?
>>
No. 841068 ID: a1efcf

rolled 1, 2, 5 = 8

>>841037
Alright, bump it up to 6 gold even then, and grab 8 glass vials, fill 4 of them with 4 doses of centipede antivenom, two with alchemical healing potions and 1 with paut. Get the delivers webbing and bandolier for Kent to carry the paut and spare vial, and change the arrows to the second tier that costs 5x more, giving me 10 broadhead and 5 bodkin. That math all checks out, right?

As for Isaiah I figured the barrels of ale would be heavy enough that any haul speed up the moving process- thought that combined with providing other, misc free labor and services as he was doing before he remember he should be in a dungeon would be enough to “earn” the prayers he needs to sustain himself. Rolling for it now, unless that last roll I made can apply to anything good, like travel or haggling.
>>
No. 841080 ID: 094652

rolled 2, 1, 5 = 8

Also, Azure will use her charm to help get a discount on all these purchases. Rolling.
>>
No. 841089 ID: d36af7

>>841049
Phoenixes are usually more of an aboveground thing, but it should work, yeah. Unless the head's not genuine, in which case you'd end up with her separated-at-birth identical twin sister or something.
>>841080
Success, 10% off the list price.
>>
No. 841115 ID: af6e04

rolled 6, 3, 6 = 15

>Another 10' deep pit. Nobody falls in this time.
Can we open the door or is it stuck like the other one?
>>
No. 841150 ID: b45626

rolled 1, 4, 2 = 7

>>841037
Crap, it's probably a portcullis. Valeno will hurry on through, rolling or whatever quick maneuver gets them past that door safely.
>>
No. 841153 ID: d22dc0

>>841068
Kent is also carrying the centipede antidote and alchemical healing potions, and by my estimates we've saved 12 silver- enough to get 5 meteorite tipped bolts and some proper thieves tools, with 15 copper left over, assuming the discount applies to that portion of the purchase as well, otherwise we'd be short 10 copper. Throwing in the extra $15 as charitable donations to a suitable party to help "encourage" those prayers to hanspur. If a guy off the street handed me $15, I'd thank whoever they asked me to.


Just to clarify, there were some typos before that may have obscured my meaning, but Isaiah is casting ant haul to help move barrels of ale and provide labor, as well as providing other services as needed/available, all free of charge, so I was kinda assuming that'd be enough for him to earn his needed prayers.
>>
No. 841285 ID: d36af7

>>841115
Also seems to be stuck, a refreshing bit of rotational symmetry.

>>841150
Valeno steps across and out of the way with several seconds to spare before the whirring timer runs out and the portcullis slams down. The gaps between the bars are wide enough to squeeze through, so doubling back is still an option.

Continuing on past another pit/ledge/pressure-plate assembly (probably linked to the same mechanism), there's a T intersection. Straight ahead, or turn right toward (judging by the echoes) a larger chamber?

>>841153
Alright, Isaiah's upkeep for that week of study is covered and Azure's got an extra fifteen copper.
>>
No. 841287 ID: 094652

rolled 3, 3, 4 = 10

>>841285
Pog politely volunteers to check the remaining two doors for trapdoors or some new pair of symmetrical traps.
>>
No. 841300 ID: 15d9e4

rolled 5, 1, 1 = 7

>>841285
Echoes? Valeno will listen to the sounds that come down from that passageway before making a decision on where to go.

Whether or not this is going to be a good choice remains to be seen. Although, while there is a moment of thought, Valeno might have an idea about all the traps: It seems they are only for restraining or keeping people from escaping. Which after learning about the disease, makes sense. However, that might mean these traps must have been effective, as Valeno hadn't heard of this disease till they got there....

Valeno will continue to keep on their guard, drawing a dagger.
>>
No. 841388 ID: d36af7

>>841300
Footsteps from up ahead, at least fifty feet away, and faint giggling. A child?
>>
No. 841470 ID: b45626

rolled 6, 3, 5 = 14

>>841388
Giggling? A child? In a place like this? There is no way there is a child in a place like this. If any creature is having a good time down here, it most likely doesn't wish good will on anyone.

The other path seems to be the best option. Valeno will continue to skulk away.

(OOC: Is it possible that Valeno is aware of their curse? Or is it something like, "hey demons will find you, congratulations!")
>>
No. 841488 ID: af6e04

rolled 1, 2, 4 = 7

>Also seems to be stuck, a refreshing bit of rotational symmetry.
This place isn't so bad. How about the skull and wolf doors?

We could probably figure out how to open these trapped doors, but we have so much ground to cover that's NOT blocked off. Might be better to come back to them.
>>
No. 841590 ID: d36af7

>>841470
Valeno turns right, away from the giggling, and after about six paces trips over a bench. Lots of jumbled broken furniture, probably a waiting room that's been thoroughly vandalized. In the course of trying to circle around the debris she finds what seems to be a stone staircase leading upward. Climb, or continue ahead to check out that echo-y open space? In either case, will you go slow and silent in an effort to re-establish stealth, or slow while probing and tapping ahead with an improvised cane to minimize risk of traps and further tripping hazards, or fast and reckless to put as much distance between Valeno and the "child" as possible?

>>841488
Which one first?
>>
No. 841607 ID: 15d9e4

rolled 5, 5, 1 = 11

>>841590
Valeno will wait for a moment, to see if the "child" is aware of them.

If not, climbing the stairs, up means further up out of this place. And the sooner the better. As for pace, a piece of debris will work for a prodding stick. Can it be done in such a way as it's not overtly loud? Like going at a relatively slow pace, but prodding ahead to be aware of trips and traps?

Still keeping a dagger in their primary hand, and poking stick in off-hand.
>>
No. 841622 ID: d22dc0

rolled 6, 5, 3 = 14

If all the extras are covered, then I think team homebodies is ready to head out- Rhea, Kent and Isaiah set out to join Team DungeonCrawler in the abandoned hospital.

Rolling for travel, my characters at least
>>
No. 841631 ID: af6e04

>Which one first?
Skull
>>
No. 841743 ID: d36af7

rolled 3 = 3

>>841607
>wait for a moment, to see if the "child" is aware
Footsteps are getting closer, but it seems like a leisurely strolling pace.

>Can [cane travel] be done in such a way as it's not overtly loud?
The main benefits of the technique are tactile probing of the floor ahead without needing to crouch or crawl, and crude echo-mapping of the surrounding environment. Not making noise would mean holding the stick out in front without deliberately touching the floor, which misses out on most of that sensory data.

There are six flights of stairs, with 10' square landings between them, each landing corresponding to a turn 90 degrees to the left. The first five flights have 44 steps each, every one eight inches deep and six inches high.

On the sixth flight of stairs, eyes level with the floor of a larger room, Valeno spots a flickering green light, most likely some alchemically supplemented or otherwise unnatural flame seen through the crack under a door. Before this light can be investigated properly, a rubbery man-sized lamprey/slug thing drops from the ceiling onto them and attempts to feed.

>>841631
The skull door doesn't seem to have any traps, and opens easily enough to reveal a long straight corridor, but the hinges squeak so badly, even Valeno can hear (though identifying the direction from jumbled echoes while distracted by combat will require a roll). A 6 or less on the die I just rolled means the noise also attracts a wandering monster.

>>841622
>rolling for travel
>rolled 6, 5, 3 = 14
Kent can't stand the sun, Rhea can't get enough of it, and Isaiah keeps getting sidetracked with minor watercourses and game-trails. If that wandering monster roll results in a fight, you won't arrive in time to get involved.
>>
No. 841758 ID: d22dc0

>>841743
That description was both apt, and amusing, thank you.
>>
No. 841763 ID: 094652

rolled 6, 6, 1 = 13

>>/questdis/117455
>>841743
Azure's flighty nature means she's constantly distracted by simple things on the road, but this time there's a rope on her leg and it's tied to Isiah. The constant conflict in where-to-go is helping them remember they had to do something, but they're mostly sidetracked and constantly diverting from the main path. Azure can find it easily enough.

Azure's distracted by shiny things along with the others. Roll determines if she finds something valuable.
>>
No. 841775 ID: 3abd97

>Kent can't stand the sun, Rhea can't get enough of it
It's a wonderful day isn't it?

Prepared spells for travel day:

Zeorth: Detect Magic, Detect Poison, Enhanced Diplomacy, Purify Food and Drink.
First: Air Bubble, Clarion Call, [Domain Spell]
>>
No. 841783 ID: af6e04

rolled 2, 4, 4 = 10

>Long straight corridor
Well, might as well check out how far it goes. Moving fairly slow with the pole.
>>
No. 841868 ID: d36af7

>>841783
Thirty feet, then a 4-way intersection. Straight ahead and right continue on as far as can easily be seen, left hits either a dead end or a t-junction after another thirty feet.

Meanwhile, Geoffrey has been grabbed from behind by two zombies. A spear isn't much good when somebody gets too close.
>>
No. 841910 ID: b45626

rolled 3, 3, 3 = 9

>A 6 or less on the die I just rolled means the noise also attracts a wandering monster.
(OOC: B-but you only rolled one die....)

Is Valeno face-down or face up? It doesn't really change the fact that Valeno is going to stab this thing till no end, but if they are face-up then can the prodding stick be used to shove into its maw?

Its going to have a hard time feeding with a large stick down its throat.

Regardless if this works or not, stabbing will definitely be the next action.
>>
No. 841936 ID: d36af7

>>841910
Valeno heard the phlegmy slithering sound of the leech's detachment from the ceiling, whipped that stick upward in an attempt to knock whatever-it-was aside. Dodged the bite, but not the bodyslam. Knocked down, they tumbled together back down the stairs to the fifth landing. (Picture something a bit like panels 5 through 8 here http://lackadaisy.foxprints.com/comic.php?comicid=120 but in total darkness)

Mid-tumble, trained instinct took over: when grappling a confirmed hostile with an unarmored neck, control target's head with off-hand, draw knife with dominant hand, thumb along back of blade, insert tip of blade into target's carotid artery, then follow through and slash forward in a smooth continuous motion to sever the trachea and prevent a scream. This giant leech doesn't seem to have a trachea, carotid artery, neck, or even much of a head, but the ol' grab-and-stab still took a lot of the fight out of it. Seems to be trying to squirm away rather than pressing the attack. Let it flee, or finish it off?
>B-but you only rolled one die....
One with 20 sides, yes. Not everything in this game is 3d6.
>>
No. 841995 ID: af6e04

rolled 5, 6, 4 = 15

>>841936
Geoffrey alerts the party that it's time to retreat with his familiar scream, then he dexterously springs himself from the zombies' grip and takes off full tilt down the hallway in the direction the group came from.
>>
No. 841996 ID: af6e04

rolled 1, 1, 6 = 8

Nin tries to yank the magic spear from Geoffrey's grasp with his magic ring. He tries to auction-style announce a very quick warning before stabbing the zombie.
>>
No. 842013 ID: d36af7

>>841995
>dexterously springs himself from the zombies' grip
>rolled 5, 6, 4 = 15
One of the zombies managed to get a rotten-yet-unnaturally-strong hand onto Geoffrey's belt. The heroic desperation overdrive enchantment is dragged partway out of it's physical alignment with, and concomitant spiritual attunement to, his navel chakra (Mr Vargas does not know the proper technical terms, but can directly feel it happening thanks to sorcerous enlightenment, though not quite clearly or quickly enough to prevent it from happening) at the worst possible time, just as it's starting to warm up. The resultant magical misfire causes painful muscle spasms in his lower back, and unfastens the belt's buckle.

Geoffrey fumbles the spear, narrowly avoids losing a hand to the ancient and terrible curling flames, then falls flat on his face with his pants around his ankles.

>>841996
One zombie's torso is obliterated by fire. Disarticulated limbs fall limp and inert, but the severed head continues gnawing ineffectually on Geoffrey's shoulder.

The other zombie shambles over, pulls back it's maggoty fist for a mighty swing, and punches Nistamatsin in the chest. It feels like getting hit with a foam training weapon, or slapped by some petulant courtier's empty glove.
>>
No. 842030 ID: 094652

rolled 6, 1, 5 = 12

Pog grapples the remaining zombie, tearing off its arms with his bare hands.
>>
No. 842172 ID: af6e04

rolled 5, 1, 6 = 12

>>842013
"DAMN'D FECKIN' BELLYBUTTON MAGIC HORSE SHIT!" Geoffrey shakes the zombie head off and billiard shoots it down the hallway with the dropped pole. Then he rolls over and pulls his pants up.
>>
No. 842173 ID: af6e04

rolled 3, 5, 3 = 11

Nistamatsin briefly tries to look for a safe angle to stab around Pog's huge girth with the deadly spear, but instead opts to snatch the zombie's face.
>>
No. 842570 ID: d36af7

Azure, Isaiah, Kent, and Rhea descend the stairs just in time to see Geoffrey Vargas putting his pants back on. He glances over at Pog and Nin mutilating corpses, and reflexively attempts to clarify that this isn't what it might look like.
>>
No. 842610 ID: d22dc0

rolled 2, 1, 1 = 4

>>842570
Kent uses a combination of sign language and body language to convey an idea without an exact translation, but conveys the idea of non-nonchalant acceptance, sort of a "whatever floats your boat pal" kind of deal. suggest everyone finish up their business in this room, and make a small "base camp" either outside the entrance, or in this nearby center room for injured people to get triage and supplies to be divided up, or left if they're not important.

Isaiah, who is carrying most of the supplies, is in the center room, doing exactly that, unpacking personal supplies from within himself, sorting out tents and bed rolls, helping Rhea set up a small cooking station, etc. He's gonna start using his road sight to more or less confirm the rooms mapped thus far, and whatever else he can scan from the central room.
>>
No. 842613 ID: 3abd97

rolled 1, 2, 3 = 6

When the boys are done taking those corpses apart, Rhea will gladly preform the rites for putting lost souls to rest, and immolate the remains.
>>
No. 842621 ID: 094652

rolled 3, 4, 4 = 11

"Not again... oh wait, those are just undead. Phew."

Azure asks Pog what happened. Then she reattaches the rope from Isiah to Pog's neck manacle.

Azure looks over the bodies for anything valuable the others passed off as garbage, like scraps from tapestries or ugly-looking rare-metal ore. Roll for appraisal check; hopefully she won't just focus on the shinies.
>>
No. 842643 ID: af6e04

rolled 1, 3, 6 = 10

>>842621
Nin moves to embrace the new arrivals, covered in zombie gore.

Making a base camp is fine, but everybody should remember that bandits are stationed in this place and will probably raid any stationary camp when we're not in a position to defend it. Nin will go ahead perform a ritual to alarm the area where any supplies are left.
>>
No. 842657 ID: f36ec1

>>842643
Kent also suggest that there are at least 2 homebodies stationed in the “camp” at all times, so that there’s always someone in watch, but also to provide redundancy against traps and such. Can’t have everyone fall victim to the trap if not everyone is there to fall victim. At least, one would hope it works that way. Since Kent is proposing the idea, they’ll also offer to take first shift, unless anyone else is interested in having a rest- Geoffrey seems as though he may be particularly interested in having fewer monster near him.
>>
No. 842695 ID: d36af7
File 150989784522.png - (622.82KB , 753x997 , critscry.png )
842695

>>842610
>road sight
>rolled 2, 1, 1 = 4
I don't want to just hand you the whole map, but that definitely deserves something.

So, you're in room 1, obviously. The visible door in the alcove beneath the carving of a hand is either some sort of magic portal, or a completely fake door mounted directly on a solid stone wall, but there's a secret passage connected to the pit beneath it. The hallway to room 30 is 30 feet longer than your maps so far have indicated. Room 30 also has a secret door. Bandits and undead are based in rooms 15 and 16. Green fire in room 12, with some sweet-scented snake-like creature seeking it out.
>>
No. 842703 ID: b45626

rolled 5, 4, 1 = 10

>>841936
>One with 20 sides, yes. Not everything in this game is 3d6
(OOC: Good to know there are other dice used in this game, but i figured it came across as a joke. I always forget how much context you lose from text.)

Valeno will let the monster go, as other creatures are bound to have heard them, the wounded lamprey creature will serve as good bait.

Does Valeno hear the door creak? I would imagine they hear the yelling of a frustrated man. That will be the way to go. Valeno will attempt stealth again, also trying to stay clear of the lamprey-man so he can't get a cheap shot.
>>
No. 842817 ID: af6e04

rolled 3, 4, 1 = 8

Nistamatsin throws his own map over his shoulder and stares eagerly at the one Isaiah drew. He says this is an excellent opportunity to strike the bandits before they are aware of our presence. Though this sweet-scented snake creature seems significant in a way that Nin can't exactly articulate, so maybe we should go looking for it first.

In any case, is everybody ready for a fight?
>>
No. 842852 ID: d10e29

>>842817
Kent and Isaiah are both up for a fight, although each have their own reservations;

Isaiah would prefer they give the bandits some options to surrender, or sort things out without the need for violence; at the end of the day, all we really need is for the bandits to not be here in this hospital; whatever else they decide to do, or where they decide to go, well that's their choice. If [/i]they[/i] choose violence, then that's a poor choice on their part, and we should respond accordingly. Perhaps, depending on the number, they can wait for the group to split, overpower them, and use their show of force to convince them to leave. People are often resentful of such actions however, so it may not be wise to use threats and ultimatums to start off a social encounter. Whatever, course of action they decide to take though, Nin and the others should let Isaiah scout ahead and determine the relative number of individuals, and usual paths they take to get a head for how best to approach things.

Kent on the other hand, has no qualms about a surgical strike from the darkness; they've got a job to do, and the bandit's are worth a bounty if they remember correctly. If not, it still gets them closer to their end goal, but in general individuals wanted by the state are worth more to them alive. Kent's objection is that they should still have two people watching the camp at any one time. They should sort out volunteers before such an event.

Isaiah would prefer to lead the charge, so the group can gather more information, and so that Isaiah can try to offer the bandits choices as opposed to outright attacking them

Kent is to being part of either team.

Pog should probably be on the attacking team, unless they want to utilize stealth, in which case Pog's brawn should be used as an asset for holding off anything dangerous from attacking the camp.

Nin's face stealing power is useful for stealth and incapacitating enemies; however, the demon is also wounded, and not fighting at peak performance.

Rhea's healing and diplomacy skills would be useful, but how she feels about such a raid might affect her willingness to be involved. Azure also has some diplomatic experience, and the bandits might be slightly more lonely, although if they've formed tight relationships with each-other they may not take take a great interest in her.

If the angel can scry on us, cast spells on us, etc, perhaps we can get some long range magical assistance. If we meet up with Valeno, we could have one more person to aid our cause, although he may just want to get to town. We've got food, personal supplies, and medics though, not to mention safety in numbers compared to traveling alone, all of which could be offered in exchange for some help over the next couple days.
>>
No. 842862 ID: af6e04

>give the bandits some options to surrender
Nin seems to take this as some sort of sarcastic joke and cackles conspiratorially. Though a couple of the bandits could be worth more to us than their bounty, alive, if we send them ahead of us faceless and bound at the wrists to check for traps and bad air.

>the demon is also wounded, and not fighting at peak performance.
Nin says that his stigmata are more annoying than debilitating, and that he is much better equipped to deal with physical trauma than the rest of the party. The bandit hideout has two entrances, so we could probably attack from both angles simultaneously. If Isaiah insists on leading a charge, he should hold on to the magic spear.

>we could have one more person to aid our cause
Are we sure this snake creature isn't in league with the bandits? If it is, we could pick it off while it's alone and use its face to our advantage.

I would like to hear what everybody else thinks before we make a move, but we should act quickly.
>>
No. 842864 ID: af6e04

Also, can we do a quick experiment on exactly how this magic ring works? If I try to retrieve the spear when it's in somebody else's hands, does it just poof away from them or can they hold onto it? If I tug, can they feel said tug? If they hold on, do I feel the resistance? Perhaps we could work out some sort of messaging system between Nin and whoever's holding the spear.
>>
No. 842868 ID: 094652

Azure sings a dwarven melody and finds her throat is slightly dry. Some gargling later, and she's putting canaries to shame. Time to charm some bandits.

Pog gets psyched to enrage when Azure gives the signal. He's a little more focused and won't wander off in boredom for a few minutes.
>>
No. 842916 ID: fc3fc0

>>842862
>stigmata

Kent looks at the brass covered palms, centipede bite, and zombie colored flesh Nin is currently sporting, does a bit of an “if you say so” movement, and suggests that if the bandits have monsters in their side, it would serve to explain how they’ve been able to stay holed up in here. A word of warning, if whatever creature Isaiah sensed is in league with the bandits then attacking it might loose them the element of surprise. Magical alarms and communication aren’t that hard to pull off, as Nin should know

Isaiah is surprisingly eager to grapple with another large snake creature, although he would like to take up the rear if that’s their plan
>>
No. 842922 ID: 3abd97

rolled 4, 1, 5 = 10

>In any case, is everybody ready for a fight?
Personally, Rhea would be more interested in visiting that green fire to question it than to pick a fight.

It also seems silly to charge in when we don't know what we're dealing with.

Since Isaiah was kind enough to provide [coordinates], we should be able to take a peek on what's going on in those rooms! Especially now that Mode is fully charged.

Rhea will set up her artifact set, and ask Mode to take a look at rooms 15 and 16, as indicated in Isaiah's map. We wanna know how many people, and dead un-people are there. (Probably don't want the super-expensive cubic yard by cubic yard scan, but there should be some compromise bellow complete resolution that allows counting)?
>>
No. 842975 ID: d36af7

>>842922
Only way to scan at lower resolution is to spread out the sampled areas with gaps between 'em. If you're not expecting these people to have any wall-mounted shelving or important stuff hanging from the ceiling, though, Mode suggests simply scanning the region from floor to waist height, which ends up taking just over 7 minutes (1.2 eyeballs) for the target area.

Points of interest:

*Densitometry can distinguish between muscle, lung, and bone, but not between living and dead. It also doesn't have high enough resolution to distinguish clothing from fur, or resolve recognizable facial features, but metal weapons are relatively easy to recognize.
*There are five bodies in room 16, four standing, one laying down in a stone bathtub with no water, or more likely a sarcophagus.
*Only apparent metal in that room is some platinum-group stuff atop or possibly implanted shallowly inside the prone body's chest, and a tripwire (composition indeterminate, too thin to get a fix on) running north-south near the center of the room. Checking for mechanisms inside the walls would require more time.
*Room 15 has eight bodies, mostly seated on wooden stools, half armed with shortswords and small steel bucklers, the other half with two-handed axes, plus various knives and sticks.
*Room 15 also has two barrels, one of which is mostly full of water, while the other is dry but has between three and four pounds of gold coins at the bottom.

Setup, scan, and basic analysis take at least ten minutes all together, before even considering Rhea's language barrier as a complicating factor in subsequent discussion. Who's guarding which entrances against possible wandering monsters during that time?

>>842703
>>/questdis/117552
A stone door pivots open on the opposite side of the room from Valeno, releasing a flood of green fire-light which dramatically silhouettes an immense skeletal figure, and reveals several more giant leeches lurking on the ceiling.

Tellus Matrem, who heard sounds of a struggle and opened the door to investigate, is not immediately visible behind the pedestal the skeletal figure is standing on.

>rolled 5, 4, 1 = 10
Valeno does, however, notice someone - or some thing - shaped vaguely like a caricature of a plague-wracked orcish child barely old enough to walk and hold a knife at the same time, perched atop the just-opened door like a prankster's bucket boobytrap. It has six iridescent wings, one pair curled around for modesty, the other two extended like a dragonfly at rest. It sniffs the air, giggles, then abruptly vanishes.
>>
No. 843352 ID: b45626

rolled 3, 2, 4 = 9

>>842975
(Sorry for the late reply, but i am trying to get a bit of clarification before Valeno does something else)

Did the winged child-thing(?) not notice Valeno? (I am guessing the door must have opened towards Valeno, as they wouldn't see it otherwise.) And so it seemed perched to strike? And by abruptly vanished, as in, it was perched there, then "POOF" gone? And is Valeno in range to shoot a mouth dart at this thing?
>>
No. 843355 ID: fc3fc0

rolled 5, 2, 2 = 9

>>842975
"Excuse me? I heard a bit of a scuff going on in here. I'm offering help, if you're interested. There's a lot of leeches in this room, and I doubt anyone here enjoys their company."

Rolling for general awareness and perception of possible threats.
>>
No. 843360 ID: af6e04

rolled 5, 3, 1 = 9

>Who's guarding which entrances against possible wandering monsters during that time?
Well if I'm going to be barking out orders, Nin, Kent, and Geoffrey will take the South and East doors. Pog, Azure, and Isaiah on North and West. Rhea doing the scanning. Am I forgetting anybody?

The bandits outnumber us and those zombies will certainly be an issue for anybody trying to sneak in through that way. Azure may be able to win the bandits over but it'd be risky to send her in alone. Kent may be able to cause mobility issues for the bandits with their rippling power, and I may be able to create a slipping hazard. That magic spear can take out the zombies in one good stab, which seems important...

Here's a working plan. Isaiah, Rhea, and Geoffrey sneak in through 16. Nin and Pog lead the charge through fifteen backed up by Kent and Azure. What does everybody think?
>>
No. 843375 ID: fc3fc0

rolled 6, 5, 4 = 15

>>843360
Whoops, forgot to respond to the door guarding question. List sounds good to me!

As for the attack plan, Isaiah is reluctant ambush the bandits. He feels strongly they should have a personal choice, even if it's one wrung out of them through coercion and threat. He doesn't quite understand the ethics of that just yet. He's rather pushy about going to seek out the snake room instead of planning an assault on the bandits right away. That sweet smelling snack creature could be a real problem if it attacks them from behind!

At least, Isaiah, that's what Isaiah tries to convince Nistamatsin of.

Rolling to guard the doors.
>>
No. 843376 ID: 3abd97

>Here's a working plan. Isaiah, Rhea, and Geoffrey sneak in through 16. Nin and Pog lead the charge through fifteen backed up by Kent and Azure. What does everybody think?
Rhea doesn't understand why you'd want to split up to deal with them all at once, when we don't know the groups in different rooms are working together (or aware or each other, as they're separated by secret doors).
>>
No. 843379 ID: af6e04

>>843375
>going to seek out the snake room instead of planning an assault on the bandits right away.
That's fine, but I'd rather not mess around too much down here while the bandits are still alive.

>Isaiah is reluctant ambush the bandits.
The alternatives are either to try to avoid them as we explore, hope they don't catch wind of our presence and ambush us. Or we engage them on 'fair' terms while they have superior numbers.

>we don't know the groups in different rooms are working together
The idea was mainly to attack the bandits from two different fronts instead of being funneled through a single door. Do you think it's too risky?
>>
No. 843453 ID: 3d2d5f

>The idea was mainly to attack the bandits from two different fronts instead of being funneled through a single door. Do you think it's too risky?
A pincer in general isn't a bad idea, but to pincer 15 you need to send a group through 16, which looks to me like probably 4 lesser undead guarding what might be an intelligent undead caster / mummy / vampire in a sarcophagus waiting to pop up at intruders. That thing alone might be dangerous enough that we don't want to face it with half the team. Or at least, you don't want to be counting on your backup getting past it on a time limit.

Or in more Rhea appropriate speak: "What if that's a mummy or vampire in the box? Might be tough if we're split up, or enough to keep us from getting to you in time."
>>
No. 843459 ID: 094652

Azure votes for the pincer plan; If nobody guards the second door, the enemies on the far side can outflank or escape to call in reinforcements. Splitting the party is dangerous, but keeping the enemy from getting organized is a higher priority when most of the dungeon has not been captured or explored.
>>
No. 843466 ID: d36af7

>>843352
>Did the winged child-thing(?) not notice Valeno?
Probably did notice.
>(I am guessing the door must have opened towards Valeno, as they wouldn't see it otherwise.)
That door is on a central pivot. There wouldn't have been any place for the child-thing to be standing before the door started to open.
>And so it seemed perched to strike?
Possibly, though it seemed more playful than tense.
>And by abruptly vanished, as in, it was perched there, then "POOF" gone?
Yes.
>And is Valeno in range to shoot a mouth dart at this thing?
>rolled 3, 2, 4 = 9
Mouth-dart range is five or six yards, and like any solid projectile weapon it's easier to fire down the gravity gradient than up. The thing's last known position is twelve yards away horizontally and four yards above where Valeno is standing, so it's well out of range. Thrown knife or rock might be an option, though, if you want to check whether it turned invisible or teleported away.

>>843355
The room is about seventy feet north-south by forty feet east-west, with an arched ceiling about fifteen to twenty feet high, and you're coming in through a concealed stone door in the middle of the west wall. There are three other apparent exits: a wooden door to the north, a wooden door to the east with a giant leech clinging to it, and stairs down along the southeast corner surrounded by a handrail. Upper end of the stairs is close to the east door. Five more leeches are visible on the ceiling, mostly around the southern half of the room.

The stone skeleton is ten feet tall, facing east, flanked by stone wolves as big as ponies, all three atop a five foot high, twelve foot diameter stone pedestal. None of the three have responded to light, movement, or noise. Possibly it's just a mundane statue.

Might be sensible to recap Tellus's appearance and social context for Shadowkaisen's benefit.
>>
No. 843484 ID: d36af7

>>843453
>A pincer in general isn't a bad idea, but to pincer 15 you need to send a group through 16,
Or figure out what the other two corners of the bandit lair connect to and come through there.

>>843360
>Azure may be able to win the bandits over but it'd be risky to send her in alone.
Her social skills lean toward seduction, which works better when she's in a position of apparent vulnerability. If she doesn't win them over, and some of those "sticks" on the scan turn out to be bows and arrows, it'd be even more risky to be standing next to her, particularly in a confined space where the force of an explosion would be concentrated by reflection off the walls (because, yes, GURPS has rules for that, including the difference between a fully enclosed space and one with doors or windows or other potential vents fragile enough to be blown out by the blast).

>>843375
Letting Azure try the diplomacy first would also be more compatible with Isaiah's concern for the bandits' right to self-determination,
>rolled 6, 5, 4 = 15
...which he's passionately arguing for, at the cost of obvious distraction from sentry duty.

(It's helpful to think of effective skill in GURPS in 3-point increments. Effective skill 3 is the kind of odds someone might describe as one-in-a-million, though it's actually closer to one in 200. That's the outer limit of what can be made to happen with probability-warping magic based on rerolls. Effective skill 6 is a slim but non-negligible chance, like the odds of a direct hit with spray-and-pray 'suppressing fire,' enough to encourage old soldiers to keep their heads down but not enough to reliably stop the bold. Effective skill 9 is 37.5%, typical of a talented amateur, or a pro on a really bad day. Effective skill 12 is average competent professionals facing typical challenges on an adventure. Effective skill 15 is the level of mastery that might tempt someone to say "I could do this in my sleep!" Effective skill 18 is where it makes good mechanical sense to go out looking for more ways to show off or otherwise challenge yourself, since an extra point or two of penalties won't make you any less likely to succeed, and effective skill 21 or above is the level of mastery where "I could do this in my sleep" starts being an accurate assessment of the situation. Isaiah doesn't have extraordinary senses apart from road-and-river-scrying, nor is he all that extensively trained in observation and situational awareness, and a spooky dungeon by torchlight isn't going to be providing any circumstantial bonuses, so a roll of 15 is a failure. If he had effective skill 5 or less due to debilitating pain, heavy fog, "jinkies, I'm blind without my glasses" nearsightedness, or something like that, then it would have been a botch, but he's not doing quite that badly.)
>>
No. 843509 ID: 94ac3d

>undead caster / mummy / vampire in a sarcophagus
It seems to me that the bandits would have eventually figured it out if they were camping right next to the lich king or whatever, but I suppose we can't know for sure.

>Azure going in alone
Well, it's her choice if she wants to undertake the personal risk. I won't decide for her.

>...which he's passionately arguing for
Nin isn't making the situation any better, gleefully spitting out insults toward Isaiah's faith and the fact that Hanspur apparently values the life of some cutthroats over the safety of his own prophet. Of course, if Hanspur truly cared in the first place Isaiah would have a living, breathing body instead of this puppet of metal that only moves by the God's fickle will.
>>
No. 843551 ID: 3abd97

>It seems to me that the bandits would have eventually figured it out if they were camping right next to the lich king or whatever
The doors into 16 are all marked "S" for (I assume) secret.

>>843484
Oh, Rhea likes that plan. Azure gives the bandits a chance to play nice, and if they don't, instant fiery karmic poetic justice.

If they kill themselves trying to kill Azure I'll make her a nice cake or something to make up for it after she comes back.
>>
No. 843572 ID: e9490d

>>843509
As Nin broaches the subject of religious beliefs, Isaiah is more than happy to explain and elaborate on his beliefs- the demon should be happy to know he has no qualms about killing; death is one of the many stops on the river of life. If the current deposits one somewhere other than the mortal coil, well, let’s just state that one does not endeavor to fight the waves or resist the flow of the river.

And, when one is drowning, they do not scorn the floatsom the river delivers beneath them, asking instead for a grand vessel to sail upon. Isaiah is most fortunate, and most grateful, that Hanspur favored his father as he did. It is not usual that the river takes special notice of an individual, and changes course to suit their needs. The God has shown Isaiah and his father a great kindness, and Isaiah is determined to preech of his power and grace, not as a form of repayment, or as a requirement, but because he truly believes Hanspurs grace could benifit the lives of others. To believe in Hanspur is to be delivered into the perfect home.

His objections have nothing to do with Hanspur anyhow; he respects his father and the teachings he pasted to him a great Deal; to give others the freedom of choice is the truest way to live. Each individual must walk their own path, follow their own current. To build a damn and block the flow of someone else’s life to suit your needs is a despicable act, deserving lasting and painful retribution in turn. He simply feels they should parley, and give the Bandits a choice to design their own path in life. Should they feel mortal force is the path they must follow, Isaiah has no qualms about responding in turn.

As for distraction from guard dusty, that seems completely reasonable to me. I like the way skills are brokendown so I can get a frame of reference for the odds of my characters attempting any particular act; I’m not in the habit of challenging the rulings of my game master, and I’ll be pretty content to follow whatever you say usually
>>
No. 843604 ID: d36af7

rolled 17, 19 = 36

Rolling for wandering monsters during the scan and subsequent discussion. First die is type (with 7+ being 'none'), second is approach vector.

>>843509
>the bandits would have eventually figured it out if they were camping right next to the lich king or whatever, but I suppose we can't know for sure.
You also can't yet know for sure whether Tall Jack Rat & co. have hammered out some sort of alliance with this hypothetical lich king.

Assuming you've come to an agreement on strategy and aren't under immediate attack, where are you going first and in what marching order?
>>
No. 843611 ID: 094652

rolled 3, 4, 2 = 9

>>843484
>>843509
>>843551
Azure is agitated by this general agreement to "punch a noble". She'll go in, but she's taking Pog. The plan is, she gets in danger close while Pog waits near the door to grab her ashes / rescue her from non-respawning death / hold the door / keep the enemies from breaching the choke point.

Azure and Pog will enter first from door 15. Then Azure will look around for anything she can't come back from. If it's just killers, she'll flap down near the center of the room (away from the tripwire) and begin an all-out seductionsault with Performance (Song and Dance), Diplomacy, Serenade, etc. The whole enchilada.

Pog will go into a rage if Azure is attacked and keep an eye on the mooks if they aren't.
>>
No. 843624 ID: af6e04

rolled 5, 4, 3 = 12

>The doors into 16 are all marked "S" for (I assume) secret.
Well it can't be THAT big of a secret if we just figured it out from all the way over here.

>deserving lasting and painful retribution in turn
Ahh, so you are saying we should torment the bandits and then kill them! It looks like we've been on the same page this whole time after all.

>>843611
If Azure is confident in her ability to charm these men while she has a giant orc breathing down their necks, she must be an incredible seductress.

>Where are we going?
Through door B, past the crossroads, north on the next turn up to the secret door leading to 15. Nin, Isaiah, Rhea, Kent, Azure, Pog, and Geoffrey, in order from point to rear. Until we get close, then Azure and Pog will move ahead while the rest of us wait in reserve. If this sounds okay to everybody, I'll go ahead and roll for spot and checking for traps.
>>
No. 843625 ID: 3abd97

rolled 1, 5, 5 = 11

>>843611
Putting Pog in the line of the divine explodely-firey retribution seems an odd choice to Rhea, but she guesses that's their call.

Rhea will tag Azure with Enhanced Diplomacy before we send her in.

>Well it can't be THAT big of a secret if we just figured it out from all the way over here.
Well Isaiah did get a critical success on his divinely given magic mapping power.
>>
No. 843632 ID: b45626

rolled 4, 1, 1 = 6

>>843355
Valeno whispers, "Are you talking to me? And you want to help? There is no one there, so now I must be going crazy." Lack of food, water, and sleep must be getting to them. Nevertheless, Valeno grabs a dagger, and figures at least if they are going to fight it will be in the light. No more of this fumbling in the dark business.

"Well if you're going to give me a hand, 'mysterious stranger' I will take it. I will say those beasts outnumber us 3 to 1, maybe drawing them out would be best. I am not the type for running into conflict if i can help it."

(If Valeno doesn't actually have the information on how many there are i guess just remove that sentence about their odds.)

Valeno doesn't want to admit, let alone to a total stranger, that those statues bear only nefarious ends to both of them, especially if they let their guard down. They will also whisper and listen to make sure there are no other 'surprises' coming up the stairs or through any other doorways.

"Also, what's your name? If I am going to start hearing voices, I would like to know what they want to be called. I'm Valeno."
>>
No. 843674 ID: d36af7

>>843624
>Well it can't be THAT big of a secret if we just figured it out from all the way over here.
>rolled 5, 4, 3 = 12
Nistamatsin, staring straight at what Isaiah insists is the front door of the bandit lair, can't tell it apart from any other featureless patch of wall.

>>843632
>listen to make sure there are no other 'surprises'
>rolled 4, 1, 1 = 6
Faint giggling is still present. It's definitely the same 'child' Valeno heard downstairs, though exact position is hard to pin down thanks to the arched ceiling's strange acoustics.

Also, a couple hundred ravenous squeaking rats are approaching through the room with the green fire, behind Tellus. Simplest way to hold off the swarm would be to shut the door, but that would leave you in the dark again unless Tellus brought a light source.
>>
No. 843744 ID: af6e04

rolled 3, 2, 6 = 11

>>843674
Well, he did say it was a secret door. No point in doubting armor boy now and eating my words even harder.

Kent's a tinkerer, right? They should be able to figure out how to open it.
>>
No. 845242 ID: d22dc0

rolled 5, 2, 5 = 12

Tellus Matrem is a mound-builder, a race in JamesLeng's world that is somewhat analogous to halflings or hobbits. Notable exceptions are the fact that they can't produce offspring with Elvendoid races, because they're part of a genetically distinct sub-group. We have some more information about that written on an info sheet somewhere if you wanna read up. They also tend to be good sprinters, but poor marathon runners; basically, they're known for short bursts of movement, but don't have great stamina, and need to eat regularly. Mostly nomadic, travel place to place building crude earthen burrows, hence the name moundbuilder.

Tellus has olive-brown skin except for bright pink tattoos coiled around the forearms, wears a distinctive red porcelain mask and yellow-and-green leather satchel, both proprietary marks of the Courier's Guild, travel-stained clothes, and smells vaguely of honey.

Tellus has, in addition to their mask and Satchel:
Left Hip: Dried Fruit
Right Hip: Jug of Water
Chest/neck: Jade Amulet, depicting Serpenhearth
Right Shoulder: Oil
Left Shoulder: Lantern

Tellus will step into the room and try to ward off the rats with a flaming puddle of lantern oil- preferably placed so as not to block them from leaving through the door.

"I'm often called Tellus. I've got business to attend to in a number of days, and can't stay long, so I'd appreciate having someone to watch my back while I try to navigate back to the exit. I suggest you hurry towards the door and make a hasty retreat with me."
>>
No. 845314 ID: d36af7

>>845242
>ward off the rats with a flaming puddle of lantern oil- preferably placed so as not to block them from leaving through the door
There's two doors, at opposite ends of a short secret hallway. If you want to make a wall of flaming oil to keep the rats at bay, while keeping the door open, there are three options: you could pour it in a wide arc around the door outside the chapel-of-green-fire end of the hall, or fill the hall itself (which would create the best barrier, since rats can climb walls, but also be the hardest for you to see or safely move through), or fill the space between the other door and the statue's pedestal.
>>
No. 845335 ID: 5694dc

>>845314
I was thinking of a Molotov situation, lighting the jug and tossing it into the rat swarm if that’s possible/has a reasonable chance to be an effective weapon. If not, my goal is to help unite Valeno and Tellus, before Tellus gets eaten alive by rats. Creating a flaming wall between the door and pillar sounds like it’d be easy for the rats to circumnavigate, but the other options sound like they would make it difficult for the two disparent parties to reunite, since Tellus is at one end of the green fire room, and Valeno is at the other if I understand correctly. Making a wall of fire that can effectively stop rats would also likely be effective at stoping anyone with flesh suceptable to burning.

If only there was some sort of fire ambassador nearby, being asked by her allies to go investigate the room Tellus and Valeno were in
>>
No. 845493 ID: d36af7

>>845335
>since Tellus is at one end of the green fire room, and Valeno is at the other if I understand correctly
No. Tellus just came from the green fire room, through the secret passage, to meet Valeno in the dark room with the giant skeleton statue and the leeches. The rats appeared in the only other exit from the green fire room, cutting off Tellus's retreat.
>>
No. 845517 ID: 3abd97
File 151085630586.png - (143.82KB , 515x330 , Cropped map.png )
845517

>>845493
>>845335
To help visualize this, I've annotated the map.
>>
No. 845584 ID: d10e29

>>845517
Thank you, it does. Still struggle with the mapping 2d words into a 3d image in my head.

Tellus closes the door behind him, and lights the lamp, not the rats. Rat swarm can be dealt with after they sort out the giant leeches everywhere.
>>
No. 848430 ID: d36af7

>>845584
Leeches seem to be very slow-moving out of the water, and moderately averse to bright light. Looks like they're primarily ambush predators, so with stealth blown, they'll most likely fight only when cornered. That wounded one is inching it's way back up the wall by the stairs.

If you don't want to pick fights with oversized bloodsuckers, that's an option. You could take a few minutes to check Valeno for injuries from that fall, examine the statue, or leave through the door furthest from the stairs.
>>
No. 848734 ID: b45626

rolled 6, 2, 1 = 9

>>845584
>>848430

Valeno doesn't feel hurt, but that just might be the adrenaline.

"Okay Tellus, this place has been playing with my head since i got trapped in here. I would rather not have to deal with ANY of these monsters, so let's get out of here. Formalities later."

Motioning to the door north, it's fantastic to finally have a light in this place.

"keep on your guard, there is a winged creature that has it out for us, i feel."

Valeno will forgo stealth in the meantime, everything knows they are there, and the light isn't going to help, however Valeno will attempt to dodge any leeches that might lash out.

"Stay close!"
>>
No. 848869 ID: d22dc0

rolled 3, 4, 1 = 8

Tellus struggles mentally to match Valenos sudden change of pace, but follows behind dutifully;

“What winged thing? If there’s a creature plotting against us, I’d like to be more informed. You should know I’m not armed, so it might be best to avoid conflict.”

Roll to protect myself
>>
No. 848957 ID: d36af7

>>848869
>>848734
Door opens onto a straight. 10' square hallway. No traps or dangerous critters are in evidence, but about 20-25 feet in there's a pile of dirt and rubble, impassable without digging. Looks like part of the roof collapsed years ago.

Behind you, there's some sort of plague-demon. It's about the same size and shape as a mound builder overall, but with a grotesquely bloated head almost wider than the shoulders, teeth like a shark, and wings like a bat - a normal-sized bat, not nearly enough to lift the thing's weight by natural aerodynamics.

It's holding a carpenter's hammer and two ten-penny nails (eight inches long, thick as a finger) in one hand, about to slam the door shut with the other. Presumably intending to trap you in the collapsed hallway by nailing the door in place right afterward.
>rolled 6, 2, 1 = 9
>rolled 3, 4, 1 = 8
A 10' square patch of floor right in front of the door, between you and the demon, looks shinier than it did a moment ago.
>>
No. 848959 ID: d22dc0

rolled 6, 2, 2 = 10

>>848957
"Hm, some sort of Quasit? It probably wants us to panic. I think we could pry the nails out of the door, so we needn't hurry."

Drop into a defensive stance, study the creature, see if he can gain any insight into its intentions or nature.

Rolling to identify and gain insight into it's motives.
>>
No. 849095 ID: d36af7

>>/questdis/118376
>which side of the door the shiny part of the floor is on
The side closer to our heroes, such that it covers almost half the floor space in the collapsed hall. To reach the door without touching the anomalous floor section would require either a long jump, a climb across the walls or ceiling, burrowing through the debris behind them to circle around, or... I dunno, some sort of teleportation ability or something.
>>848959
>pry nails out of the door
Without a pry-bar, or access to the side of the door which the nails had been driven into?
>identify and gain insight into it's motives
>rolled 6, 2, 2 = 10
One of the weakest types of logos-mobile demons, meaning it can teleport at will to any location it has ever seen or heard a reliable description of, unless blocked by powerful wards. It can turn invisible, though attacking breaks that. It's bite carries a deadly and magic-resistant disease. Other powers are fairly weak, and limited use per day besides: whispered messages at unusual distances, making things slippery, summoning uncontrolled swarms of wasps, spiders, or rats.

It's been herding you into a trap with atypical patience, which would imply a personal interest in one or both of you that outranks the usual agenda of letting victims return home (to spread the disease and deplete medical resources), as well as long-term leadership and training from some more powerful demon.
>>
No. 849652 ID: b45626

rolled 6, 2, 6 = 14

>>849095
(Sorry santova for the weird change of pace between posts, i was a bit confused about our current standing, and thought were not in as big of a predicament as we actually are.)

Valeno lets loose a mouth dart into the huge noggin of this demon. Hoping to either kill, incapacitate, or have it flee. (hopefully the first two rather than the latter.)

Is the knowledge of its plague abilities known to Valeno?
Is Tellus right behind Valeno? If so, they will pass a knife to Tellus.

Are the other monsters following us?
>>
No. 849667 ID: d36af7

>>849652
>rolled 6, 2, 6 = 14
Dart misses by about a handsbreadth, embedding itself in the door just a heartbeat before the slam. You're probably going to be stuck in there for at least a few minutes.

>>843744
Kent manages to slip a hooked wire into the appropriate crevice and jimmy the secret door open so Azure and Rhea can slip inside.

In the short hallway on the far side, two orcs with large axes slung on their backs are playing some game with knucklebones and colored beads. One of them glances up and announces the arrival of intruders with about as much urgency as idle commentary on the weather, or suspicion that a pie might be cooled enough to be safe to eat. The other slouches over to the far end of the hall, opens the similar stone door just far enough to bark a detailed description in some unfamiliar language or impenetrably obscure slang, receives an even longer reply in the same dialect, and turns back to translate.

"Tall Jack Rat says you must undress, to prove you have no weapons, before coming further inside."
>>
No. 849668 ID: 094652

rolled 1, 2, 1 = 4

>>849667
And now begins Azure's little play.

Azure strip-dances her meager clothing, performing a subtle bardic dance through her undressing. She takes care to steady the pace, which weakens the effect but should mask her intent should the performance fail.

Azure is casting Serenade. If the spell succeeds, she'll convince the orc to let them put their clothing back on and bring a few gifts for their boss, so they might undress for the whole crowd.
>>
No. 849706 ID: d36af7

>>849668
>rolled 1, 2, 1 = 4
Tall Jack Rat and all his bandits work for you now, assuming you're hiring.
>>
No. 849900 ID: 3abd97

>"Tall Jack Rat says you must undress, to prove you have no weapons, before coming further inside."
>Tall Jack Rat and all his bandits work for you now, assuming you're hiring.
Rhea, clothes askew, cheerfully reports back to the rest of the party that Azure did a bunch of things, the bandits are friendly now, and absolutely no one exploded.
>>
No. 849939 ID: af6e04

rolled 5, 1, 5 = 11

>>849900
Well that went in a direction I didn't expect it to. I suppose they might be more useful to us than the price of their bounties. Nistamatsin asks Rhea to arrange a meeting with Tall Jack Rat to negotiate the terms of his payment. Alone, as we don't want him losing face in front of his men.
>>
No. 849967 ID: d36af7

>>849939
Main things Tall Jack Rat wants are the immediate necessities of survival: food, drink, shelter, information about opportunities and threats, particularly why Drusilla decided to attack Mikhail's Marauders and reduce them to their current sorry state. Vengeance on that front would be awesome, even if they needed a lot of help to make it work, but they'd also gladly settle for figuring out how to stop it from happening again. All the bandits - except Nerys, actually, who's still complaining that this is some kind of trick - would also greatly appreciate the opportunity to have sex with cute, healthy, cooperative people. Most of them prefer women, but none are all that picky. They've got a stash of gold which could theoretically be exchanged for things, and wouldn't complain about getting more money, but gold's no good if you got nowhere to spend it. So, the main plan is to help out with this magic sword quest deal, then emigrate to Greznek.

Immediately available portion of Tall Jack Rat's gang is two five-man squads, one an orc hunt-brotherhood with two-handed axes (highly skilled but poorly equipped heavy infantry), the other humans with short swords and longbows (light infantry, since they use hit-and-run tactics rather than massed fire, but they could be straightforwardly retrained as bowmen). Two more squads of archers are nearby, one in another room accessible through a crawlspace, the other out patrolling the halls.

Upkeep costs about a gold piece per squad per day, but they'll gladly accept equivalent value in beer and plunder. That's the minimum to keep them in fighting shape, though you could get by with half that much without permanent damage, if you're not expecting trouble for the next month. At the other end, adding another 25-50% to their pay, particularly in the form of highly portable wealth, nicer food, or luxury services, would go a long way toward maintaining morale.
>>
No. 850009 ID: af6e04

rolled 5, 2, 3 = 10

>>849967
>food, drink
What have they been living off of so far?

>shelter
Does he mean outside the hospital?

>why Drusilla decided to attack
On that front we're looking for a kobold named Niknak Tarbucket. Can he tell us where to find them?

>greatly appreciate the opportunity to have sex with cute, healthy, cooperative people
Everybody within my party is healthy and adorable, but willingness is up to them. Attempts at coercion will be met with painful and deadly vengeance. I can offer myself to help satisfy the mortal urges of anyone in the gang as long as they don't have any deforming scars or missing limbs on on side of their body.

What kind of equipment would help this orc hunt-brotherhood do their job better? What kind of luxury services are they looking for?

Would anybody in Tall Jack Rat's gang be capable and willing to spend an extended length of time learning advanced geomantic concepts under a competent teacher?

Do we actually have him alone, or did he bring some of his bodyguards along?
>>
No. 850018 ID: d36af7

>>850009
>What have they been living off of so far?
Giant bugs, approximately normal-sized rats, water from whichever of the pools in that one room isn't cursed this week. Capturing idiot adventurers and ransoming them back to their friends, then spending some of the money from that to have Khadeehya deliver a load of salted meat, hardtack, and opium. Roots and berries out in the forest, when they get desperate enough to outweigh the fear of Drusilla and her wolves showing up again to finish the job.

>shelter
>outside the hospital?
Yeah, sleeping somewhere besides a haunted, giant-bug-infested ruin would be a nice change of pace. Wait, you're saying this place used to be a hospital? Why's the front door look like a giant demon's mouth, then?

> we're looking for a kobold named Niknak Tarbucket. Can he tell us where to find them?
Not specifically. Niknak's crew have lots of little hidey-holes, and they're always moving around to set up new ones.

>What kind of equipment would help this orc hunt-brotherhood do their job better?
Better armor, mostly.

>Would anybody in Tall Jack Rat's gang be capable and willing to spend an extended length of time learning advanced geomantic concepts under a competent teacher?
The bandit gang's overall level of literacy and intellectual ambition is fairly low, but Eochaid would certainly be interested, and the others might at least be wiling to listen to lectures and answer questions afterward to prove they were paying attention. How much will this training cost, and what's it good for?
>Do we actually have him alone, or did he bring some of his bodyguards along?
Everybody else is about fifty feet away, at the far side of the big diamond-shaped room the bandits have been using as their main lair. Quiet conversation is mostly unintelligible at that distance, and the light is bad enough that even lip-reading would be difficult, but a scream or brawl will be immediately obvious.
>>
No. 850021 ID: af6e04

rolled 6, 1, 6 = 13

>>850018
>you're saying this place used to be a hospital?
Yes, according to our angelic benefactor. No idea on the front door.

>How much will this training cost, and what's it good for?
It'll be part of their employment. Only stipulation is they don't jump ship as soon as we finish training them. I mean the word 'ship' literally as they'll be learning to maintain and crew a vessel.

Plan is to look around for a bit longer, then return with a more organized expedition after we sort some things out in Zelkor's Ferry. We'll bring food and water then. While we're here, we'd like to have some armed men who know the layout of the ruins to accompany us.

Ah, and the job comes with medical benefits! Is there anyone in need?
>>
No. 850025 ID: 3abd97

rolled 2, 6, 6 = 14

Should see about putting a quick contract of alliance in writing for Jack to sign on behalf of his gang (or to be passed around for signatures). They probably also count as an allied military force now, especially with the intent to emigrate to Greznek, but perhaps not a uniformed one.

>information about opportunities and threats
Did he know he has 4 or 5 neighbors in the secret room past that wall over there?

Sharing the information we got from our scrying and mapping attempts, and seeing what he fills in is probably a good idea.

>food, drink
>they'll gladly accept equivalent value in beer
>nicer food, or luxury services
"Oh! Nin had me make some fresh bread we brought along, and Nin and Kent have a great trick with beer!"

Prepared spell list today isn't optimized for quality of life improvements, but Rhea's pretty well suited to providing nicer foods and other luxuries on days the party doesn't have other needs. (Abstemiousness, purifying water, baking, etc).

>4 squads
>Upkeep costs about a gold piece per squad per day
OOC, but is that a static cost to keep them employed and friendly, or the rate to hire out squads here and there for tasks a day at a time?
>>
No. 850032 ID: d36af7

>>850025
>neighbors in the secret room past that wall over there
Zombies, yeah. No good to eat 'cause they're all rotten and disgusting. It'd probably count as cannibalism, too, which Mikhail's Marauders had a pretty good record of avoiding, and Tall Jack Rat would prefer to maintain that policy.
>is that a static cost to keep them employed and friendly, or the rate to hire out squads here and there for tasks a day at a time?
Closer to the former. They're desperate and infatuated enough to work on spec, but if they don't get at least that much averaged over the course of a given month, that'll to cut into their combat effectiveness somehow no matter how motivated they are. Worn-out bowstrings, fatigue from missed meals, trench foot from dirty socks. The level where they could look back on it later and not feel like they'd been cruelly exploited starts at about 150 gold of income per month for all four squads together. With more than that, they'll start to plan gear upgrades, recruiting more dudes, or otherwise moving up in the world. If the gang brings in less than sixty gold in a month, even at reduced readiness they'd have to either make up the difference out of savings or take 5% casualties from malnutrition, equipment breakdown, disease, infighting, desertion, or something else that's expensive to fix.

Of course, magical support services can cover at least part of that cost. Any plunder they manage to collect and keep also counts, though that's a bit less reliable for maintaining loyalty than direct wages would be.
>>
No. 850119 ID: af6e04

rolled 4, 2, 1 = 7

>>850032
>Nin and Kent have a great trick with beer!
Nin will go ahead and perform the beer trick, assuming Kent is willing to give the charm bracelet back for a second.

Unless there's something else to discuss, we'd like to get moving.
>>
No. 850154 ID: d36af7

>>850119
>perform the beer trick
Mug charm hasn't actually regenerated yet.
>get moving
Sure, sure. Which way? The bandits don't actually know all that much more about the dungeon's layout than Isaiah's path-scrying already revealed. Next level down and the contents of various rooms, mostly.
>>
No. 850184 ID: b45626

>>849667
Unless there is a way to squeeze out, or a way to get past the door, Valeno will have to wait till someone lets them out..

Is Tellus in here too?
>>
No. 850242 ID: af6e04

rolled 1, 4, 5 = 10

>Which way?
We scried a snake creature near a room full of green flames. We should probably go check it out.
>>
No. 850267 ID: d36af7

>>850242
>green flames
Bandits recognize the description and identify it as some sort of abandoned chapel near 'the old barracks,' their previous campsite. Just after everyone has finished carefully stepping around that pit trap in the T intersection, a swarm of ravenous rats appears up ahead.
>rolled 1, 4, 5 = 10
These particular rats are not the same species which is native to this part of the world. Also, something coming from the same direction smells uncommonly delicious, at least to Nistamatsin.
>>
No. 850269 ID: d36af7

>>850184
>a way to squeeze out
You could try excavating a crawlspace through the rubble. Moving rock without proper tools is slow, exhausting work, but at least it's not solid rock, and ability to squeeze through tight spaces might mean the total amount of material you need to displace is actually fairly small. If you can maneuver as easily in a one-foot-wide hole as a human could in a tunnel three feet in diameter, that'd mean you could get nine times the length for the same work.
>Is Tellus in here too?
Yes. Tellus Matrem's pre-intro mapping efforts can confirm that this cave-in almost certainly does at least have an "other side" to dig toward, though not exactly how far off that would be.

With the door shut, and the dungeon's generally poor ventilation, you've only got about 2400 cubic feet of readily accessible air. Mound-builders need a little less than humans, but the lantern probably balances that back out, so you'll likely start having trouble from bad air in ten hours, mortal danger in twenty, though it could take longer if the door isn't actually well sealed. Vigorous exertion - like, say, digging - speeds up that countdown by a factor of five.

Alternatively, you could go to the other end of the hall and try smashing the door down, either with a simple kick, a battering ram improvised from rubble, or carving into it with a knife - it's only made of wood, after all. First, however, you'd need to figure out you're going to deal with that shiny-looking patch of floor.
>>
No. 850271 ID: af6e04

rolled 1, 6, 6 = 13

>>850267
Nin says the rats should have a very hard time biting him, but everybody else should be careful. He'll go ahead and wade in with his hands clutched tight around his spear so the rats can't get at his palms. Does the firey spearhead cause any sort of parting of the swarm?
>>
No. 850273 ID: 094652

It is at this exact moment that Azure wishes she commissioned an auto-something crossbow blueprint from Hore. Well, it's nothing to worry about, right? Just a major infestation of diseased, hunger-raving rodents. She's a bird! Birds eat rodents. Or was it the other way around? Hmmm... nope. It's not like they can consume her completely, right? Not unless they're hungry enough to eat explosion, and then their charred brothers, and then the ashes - oh that's right, they are.

Their only escape route is too narrow to use quickly, but it does offer superb ventilation. Kill the horde with fire.

Azure gives signal orders using her wings while her crossbow is trained on the rats (take 10). Rhea and Nistamatsin (and anyone else with fire) are to lay down a flame wall to prevent the rats from closing in. Char just enough rats to scare the rest off. Everyone with a shield or good armor, form a wall. Anyone else, figure out what you can do!
>>
No. 850302 ID: 3d2d5f

rolled 6, 5, 1 = 12

Are the very formerly bandits coming with us? Did we leave them any of that delicious fresh bread? It sounded like they needed some good food!

>a swarm of ravenous rats appears up ahead.
"Pest control!"

Rhea uses her domain slot to cast burning hands on the swarm. If Nin's gone and put himself right in the middle of the cone, Rhea will ask her conjured flames to not burn the nice demon (or his things). He's carrying an honored elder into battle, after all. (Because Rhea and fire in general probably respects that spear a lot more than Nin).
>>
No. 850313 ID: 15d9e4

>>850269
Valeno hands Tellus one of their knives, "sorry about that earlier, I am just so tired of being down here, I sort of..... tunnel visioned a bit.
"

If there is loose dirt, covering the slime all over the floor seems like the best option to removing it.

"Let's cover all this slime with dirt, then we can try and get out of here. Unless you want to wait a bit, and hope all those leeches go away. I don't know how much air we have though."
>>
No. 850375 ID: f74a34

rolled 3, 3, 6 = 12

Rolling for shadowkaisen
>>
No. 850496 ID: d36af7

>>850302
>Are the very formerly bandits coming with us?
Yep. Archers leading the way, axes picking up the rear, Tall Jack in the middle playing executive officer, translating Azure's broad strategic direction into more detailed orders.
>Did we leave them any of that delicious fresh bread?
They can eat and walk at the same time.
>burning hands
In seconds the rat swarm is reduced to a cloud of foul-smelling smoke, which flows along the ceiling back the way it came.
>>850271
Nistamatsin chases the smoke down fifty feet of hallway, around a corner to the right, then sees it vanish through the gaps of that first door on the left. His flaming spear blasts a sturdy wooden door to ash and flinders, revealing a room about thirty feet wide and impassable due to rubble more than 15-20 feet in. Somewhere within or just beyond that caved-in section, a deliciously unrepentant assassin is trapped.

>>850313
Valeno lays a series of stepping-stones across the greased floor, but as soon as she puts her weight on one of them, it glides out from underneath and she falls prone. Standing up again after that embarrassing pratfall ought to be well within her athletic capabilities, even on a perfectly frictionless surface, yet proves to be impossible without Tellus's assistance.
>>
No. 850542 ID: 094652

Pog and the bandits will now proceed with excavation; Pog does the mining, the bandits will pick up whatever he tosses to the sides. Everyone else guards while they wait. Take ten for this action. Azure will cheer them on (but she's not using her spell slots or bp, just morale support)
>>
No. 850545 ID: af6e04

rolled 2, 4, 2 = 8

>>850496
There's no way this isn't a trap. Nin tries to calm himself down and looks for signs of warding before he goes running in to melt through that rubble with his spear.
>>
No. 850622 ID: d36af7

>>850545
>rolled 2, 4, 2 = 8
Nin realizes that a spear is not an ideal earth-moving tool, and melting the rocks - even just a little bit - would make them far more difficult and dangerous for anyone except maybe Rhea to move by hand. In fact, what would really make the whole digging process a lot more efficient would be a wheelbarrow and a dozen shovels.

When he says so out loud, Lt.Cmdr. Jalkaren Blessed-Is-The-Light (back in town) whispers that such tools can be provided very quickly, since this is a proper mission-relevant obstacle you're dealing with, and innocent lives may be in immediate danger, but there'd be an extra fee for rush delivery. Don't worry, she says, the cost is well within your cash-on-hand.
>>
No. 850709 ID: af6e04

rolled 4, 5, 3 = 12

>>850622
According to Isaiah's map, it looks like there's another door that may lead to the same area. It seems silly to spend time digging when it could be a lot faster to just walk around.

Does Lt.Cmdr. Jalkaren Blessed-Is-The-Light have any guess as to why we were lead here by the ashes of a dead swarm of rats?

>your cash-on-hand.
Nin says he'd rather not borrow more money from Geoffrey unless it's really important.
>>
No. 850822 ID: d36af7

rolled 8, 16 = 24

>>850709
>could be a lot faster to just walk around.
First wandering monster roll is for whoever goes on the proposed flanking run, second is for those who stay in the collapsed room, either digging or guarding the door.
>why we were lead here by the ashes of a dead swarm of rats?
Traces of a summoner's magic returning to it's source, most likely.
>borrow more money from Geoffrey unless it's really important.
This IS fairly important, but no, she's talking about group funds, on hand, rather than Geoffrey's personal money locked up in a vault back in town.

Returning to town to buy shovels conventionally would be a four-hour round trip, Digging without shovels takes four times as long, and just as much FP per hour, so if there's at least an hour's worth of digging to be done here (figure generously a cubic yard per soldier per hour for shoveling already-broken rock, opening a passage wide enough to work in would take six hours per nine or ten feet of length) that could easily be worth it. Express delivery means you don't need to have whoever's here in the dungeon facing four hours of random encounters with a reduced guard contingent during the supply run, and more importantly, whoever's stuck on the far side running down their air supply during that time.
>>
No. 851279 ID: 3abd97

>go around or dig through
Rhea suggests they accept Lt.Cmdr. Jalkaren Blessed-Is-The-Light's offer of delivery and dig on through. We don't know if the path around will be clear, and if we're going to fix this hospital, we'll need to clean up this mess eventually. Why put it off till later if it helps whoever is trapped now?
>>
No. 851358 ID: af6e04

rolled 3, 1, 5 = 9

>Traces of a summoner's magic returning to it's source, most likely.
So this assassin is summoning rats too. Not NECESSARILY evil, but it's a bad sign.

>Rhea suggests they accept Lt.Cmdr. Jalkaren Blessed-Is-The-Light's offer of delivery and dig on through.
Nin will go ahead and tell the angel to send the shovels. He's still going on that flanking run though. He'll ask Pog to come with.
>>
No. 851405 ID: 3abd97

>>851358
If we're doing both, doesn't Pog have experience as a miner? Maybe you should take someone else on the flanking run.
>>
No. 851437 ID: 094652

>>851358
>>851405
Agreed; Azure and Pog are the best bet at a quick excavation here.
>>
No. 851461 ID: d36af7

Jalkaren suddenly appears in the room, then flickers out. Eight shovels clatter to the floor. She reappears in the same spot, holding five more shovels in a wheelbarrow, then extends a statuesque hand, smiles, and says "Twenty-five gold, please." All this happens within thirty seconds of Nistamatsin agreeing to have shovels delivered, before decisions of who's going on the flanking run can be finalized.
>>
No. 851463 ID: af6e04

rolled 4, 5, 6 = 15

>>851461
Well, apparently we have gold on-hand so I'll go ahead and pay up. How much is left after this expenditure?

>Azure and Pog are the best bet at a quick excavation here.
I'll just take a team of archers then.
>>
No. 851468 ID: d36af7

>>851463
>How much is left after this expenditure?
>rolled 4, 5, 6 = 15
Azure, Pog, Isaiah, Kent, Nin, and Rhea together do not have anywhere near that much cash in their personal possession. A dozen shovels and a wheelbarrow would cost less than eleven silver at Rasmus Pye's store, so the archon is apparently charging you some $9,780 for an express delivery, which even Tall Jack Rat - who has proudly committed actual highway robbery - thinks is a bit steep.
>>
No. 851558 ID: af6e04

rolled 2, 5, 1 = 8

>highway robbery
Right. Not surprising, since this quest was thrust upon me in the first place under threat of death.

>do not have anywhere near that much cash
Nin makes a horrid snorting sound and draws from deep within himself the most slimy, phlegm filled lump of spit his disgusting demon body can produce and horks it into the archon's outstretched palm. He says Lt.Cmdr. Jalkaren Blessed-Is-The-Light seems to have made a clerical error regarding the party's funds but he hopes this should cover everything.
>>
No. 851583 ID: 094652

>>851558
Azure has that sphinx pose again.

In the interest of preventing the angelic military commander with multiple divine skills and borderline-fanatic subordinates from obliterating Nistamatsin's existence, she'll intervene with diplomacy. Take 10 (let me know if I need to roll):

Azure quickly explains to Lady Jalkaren that she may have gravely miscalculated the exchange rate between silver and gold; the approximate cost of the resources she delivered (plus tax) is about 12 silver. Since lady Jalkaren has delivered the materials on-site from a major advantage, she earns profit equivalent to 100% the cost to purchase materials, 300% profit from necessities, and an extra 100% for immediate delivery. That's a total of 500% * 12 silver = 60 Silver. Twenty silver coins are worth a single gold coin, and so they will gladly pay the total cost of sixty silver, or 3 gold, as opposed to freaking 25 gold.

Azure further complains that our literal highway bandits would not charge so much as a 4000% delivery fee, which Tall Jack Rat will testify here and now to, not out of morality but practicality. If Nistamatsin and company accept, their reputation as practical and reasonable specialists will plummet; accepting a 4000% price hike of anything is not what would be considered reasonable behavior, especially if the actual decision makers are not in actual helpless mortal danger. This in turn risks damaging the restoration efforts of the hospital, as few doctors are willing to accept working for an entity, even an angel, who is willing to charge ludicrous prices for simple expenses; it cuts into trust, you see. Trust is THE true currency that lady Jalkaren should be worried about; if you lose the trust of your followers, they simply won't deal with you. For instance, that promise about everyone getting literal life insurance? If she makes us believe that it has a 2,000 gold service charge or something, particularly with this extravagant service fee for a few shovels, Nistamatsin and company won't be as fervent in their dedication to this task. Besides, a demon trusting an angel, even a smidgen, is extremely valuable.

Azure understands that Jalkaren values the lives of the innocent on the other side of that passageway greatly, and is thus increasing the price accordingly. But (A) we did not actually agree to her course of action compared to our own methods, (B) she is charging us a ludicrous amount for following our own initiative to help those in need, and (C) she is seriously cutting into our trust issues.

Now once again, can she give the total expense, this time in silver, please?
>>
No. 851635 ID: d36af7

>>851583
The lieutenant-commander serenely explains that this express delivery fee is a flat five silver per pound, irrespective of the item's declared value or distance traversed. The rate is considered quite reasonable for emergency provisioning behind enemy lines, or highly perishable exotic ingredients from halfway around the world. If that is not an ideal price point for your current logistical needs, perhaps you should take this as a learning experience and plan ahead more carefully next time.

>>851558
>clerical error
>rolled 2, 5, 1 = 8
Just before the loogie has been irretrievably hocked, one of the orcish axemen steps forward, brandishing a burlap sack which contains the bandit gang's treasury: 175 gold coins, as previously detected on densitometry scan
>>842975
>two barrels, one of which is mostly full of water, while the other is dry but has between three and four pounds of gold coins at the bottom
and mentioned by Tall Jack Rat here
>>849967
>They've got a stash of gold which could theoretically be exchanged for things, and wouldn't complain about getting more money, but gold's no good if you got nowhere to spend it.

Lucjan with the blue scar, the leader of the orc squad, gruffly protests that it doesn't seem very fair. Lt.Cmdr. Jalkaren Blessed-Is-The-Light asks whether they got all that money by honest trade, or trickery, or violence. He asks whether holding people for ransom counts as honest trade and she just shakes her head, so he says pretty much only the other two. If he's upset about being tricked out of the seventh part of that money, she asks, would it be more to his preference to lose it all, by violence, as he's done to others? In an almost motherly tone she says that she's so good at making such things quick and painless, he wouldn't even need to hold still. That would be somewhat inconvenient, she explains, on account of all the paperwork afterward and missed opportunities for redemption and so on, but as a being of infinite benevolence, tempered by Law, whose driving purpose in life involves communication, she's very much willing to take on personal hardship in order to discuss and respect the preferences of others. Speaking of which, there are some starving orphans in a distant land you've never heard of who could be benefiting from this money (she's juggling a few unrelated missions, detached duty is weird like that) so a quick decision would be nice.

Lucjan confers with his hunt-brothers, Kamil, Karol, Kasper, and Kazimierz, then says "No, ma'am, we'd prefer not to be killed," and starts counting out the coins.
>>
No. 851659 ID: b45626

rolled 5, 5, 6 = 16

>>850496
"I AM SO SICK OF THIS PLACE! I AM TIRED, HUNGRY, AND NOW I AM COVERED IN THIS DISGUSTING SHIT! ARRRGH"

Valeno will vent for just a moment, knowing full well that oxygen is precious.

Valeno will try and clean themselves off, and then attempt to put loose dirt (unless for some reason there is none here in the collapsed area?) over the slime and cover it. Hopefully that will make it less slick.

Then attempt to get the door open, and hoping against hope there isn't something awful waiting on the other side.

"If i ever find that little SHIT again, i am going to make sure it DIES!"
>>
No. 851700 ID: d36af7

>>851659
There's no shortage of dirt and rubble. The problem is that all this greasy slime was created by demonic magic, with the intention to impede mobility, which keys directly into Valeno's curse.
>>
No. 851704 ID: 094652

>you should take this as a learning experience
Azure is miffed at Jalkaren's clear lack of ethical business sense; inadvertently discovering the best possible way to exploit ignorance for maximized profit and then jiding the offended party for not knowing what they were never trained for and never expected to know is quite literally the OPPOSITE of what an angel should uphold her standards to!

Azure will let it slide because they have the funds after all, but she's giving the angel a quick recap on business communication protocols, in particular the part where you're supposed to explain the exact cost and methods of any business transaction, and whenever something's a classified secret (or just really boring and the client agrees to skip the full explanation) just explain what they do and what you you in return. You do NOT convince someone to accept a "favor" from you for an unspecified amount of recompense and then immediately turn around and charge them over 500% of whatever it cost you to do that favor, that is LITERALLY crime lord behavior!

Azure goes on to conclude that while the "emergency on-site supplies at 5 silver a pound" is indeed reasonable, and she might have kept her mouth shut so we'd get on with saving instead of arguing over price, what is NOT reasonable is convincing us to purchase the most inefficient "weight-to-ratio" means of excavation as possible! Isn't there some kind of magic shovel or drill she could have suggested instead, something lightweight but fairly expensive? We would have been willing to accrue more debt if it meant the transaction was WORTHWHILE and not... this!

Lastly, Azure is miffed at the implication that this entire fiasco might one day redeem itself as a lesson for personal growth and happiness, because as far as she's concerned she and Nistamatsin will be haunted forever by the constant failure of being inadvertently conned into the worst purchase of their entire business careers by an innocent angel.

(Also, Pog is busy digging while Azure is ranting.)
>>
No. 851711 ID: af6e04

rolled 3, 3, 3 = 9

>>851635
>>851704
I think I've won the true victory here in demonstrating to all parties present that I am far more honest and benevolent than any angel. And Azure is driving this point home more eloquently than I ever could.

So with grim acceptance Nin will make haste to rescue these trapped innocents (still bringing the archers).
>>
No. 851712 ID: 3abd97

First day in the dungeon and we get to redeem some bandits, rescue people from a cave in, and save orphans, all at the same time!

Rhea's beaming, and very proud of everyone. Good job, team!
>>
No. 851919 ID: d36af7

>>851704
> the worst purchase of their entire business careers
"If that was the worst mistake you, or anyone in this room, will make for the duration, I'll do my penance for one petty lie of omission and go home happy. There are certain things I know about this place which I can't tell you, because of operational security, but I can say this: something down there might be able to offer your heart's desire. That deal will not be worth the price, not even if it happens to be wearing a pretty face. Asking for the exact price might not save you, if it comes to that point, but thinking to do so would at least be a small step in the right direction. I don't need your personal trust quite so much as I need your willpower, your cunning, fully focused on doing this job right instead of rushing in like a fool. O sweet summer child, there are scarier things in this world than the likes of me."

Then, with the twenty-five coins in hand, she's suddenly gone again.

>>851711
Nistamatsin and the archers (well, mostly archers; Owen has a spear with a sling attached to the butt end) circle around to the other nearby passage Isaiah's road-scrying couldn't penetrate. Turns out that's because of another cave-in, or more likely another side of the same one.

Want to try digging from both faces at once, or focusing on one or the other? Where will you be putting the material removed? Azure almost certainly has the most knowledge of safe excavation practices, but others might be able to assist, and that definitely requires a roll.
>>
No. 851926 ID: 094652

>>851919
... Azure's wings flutter a little as she takes in this new information.
>Taught an expensive lesson so we don't get screwed over by the Deal-Making Final Boss
>Vigorous demand of strong willpower and cunning that the party failed to show so far
>Would not do this under normal circumstances
And her respect of Jalkaren is partially restored. Like, really partially. We're talking, "Would break bread AFTER bringing our own bread and then asking how much it will cost to eat our own bread at her table, and then having a laugh about it. Followed by nervous waiting".

And now Azure really wants to focus on the digging part. So she does.

Aaand OOC I'm going to look for articles on mining techniques to represent Azure's knowledge. For now, take ten, but I'll do a proper roll once I find something worth spinning into a tale of Azure's intellect.
>>
No. 851948 ID: 3d2d5f

> the worst purchase of their entire business careers
Was there no purchase associated with either ending up wanted as accessory to murder, or getting got lost in the Bloodmist Labyrinth? :v

>Want to try digging from both faces at once, or focusing on one or the other? Where will you be putting the material removed?
Rhea thinks it probably makes more sense to focus on one than to try and do both at once.

We're in the east-west hallway north of room 26, with the blocked hallway to the south, correct? Where did Nin find the second cave in?

>>851926
You can roll a lore check without having to know a thing about mining OOC.
>>
No. 851957 ID: af6e04
File 151335384647.png - (414.61KB , 753x997 , path1.png )
851957

rolled 5, 6, 3 = 14

>That deal will not be worth the price
Nin asks if it'll kill us for refusing. (I know she can still hear me)

Can we not just zip around along the red path? And if not (part of 26 IS blanked out) the green path seems clear.

Look, we don't know for sure but it's reasonable to assume there's an alternate route around the rubble. Those two probably weren't trapped by the cave in, unless it happened very recently. Which is improbable. More likely they're just hiding out in a dead end that looks very similar to the one we're all standing in now.

Yes, all of this needs dug out. But we should wait until the giant centipede nests are all cleared and the evil wish granter is slain before we start on manual labor. Doesn't that make sense?
>>
No. 851958 ID: af6e04

>>851957
In fact, I can even ask Tall Jack Rat. Did this place collapse recently enough for two people to be trapped and still alive behind the rubble? That is to say, within the last day or so?
>>
No. 852048 ID: d36af7

>>851957
> Nin asks if it'll kill us for refusing.
"Most likely it would attempt to inflict slow cumulative misery with or without your consent. It does not kill for the sake of killing; it's nature creates an environment where wholesome life cannot endure. It is also tactically aware enough to recognize and eliminate threats."
>>851958
>ask Tall Jack Rat. Did this place collapse recently
No, it's been that way since they moved out of the old barracks. He didn't know there was a secret passage between those two rooms, and is curious how you know without having been there.
>>
No. 852051 ID: 094652

rolled 4, 1, 6 = 11

The best and worst part about mining is that you'll never know what surprises you're going to find. Second worst part is the extravagant equipment cost.

This is not regular mining. Most mines have stable slabs of compressed dirt, dead root systems, chunks of hardened rock, and the occasional vein. Of lava. Or worse, water; lava will kill about a dozen miners through convection alone (and one or two from the obvious cc) but the gruesome deaths will alert the survivors and hardened-constitution experts to get out, so fewer die thanks to the ample warning and viscosity. Digging into a lake will usually get most of the crew killed AND flood the mines in the process. Also, harvesting cooled lava and ashes is actually really profitable, if you know how to process the stuff.

Azure's not talking about most of the above, but she will explain they should start in an area with clear exits and high ground. Since we're clearing rubble and the walls are reinforced, we'll use a simple arrow formation to clear a path quickly and safely; Pog will dig forward, concentrating his pickaxe and hammer on large pieces of rubble, while the bandits shovel and wheelbarrow the collected rubble from the sides. They can dump the stuff into any trapdoors they found, in hopes of neutralizing trapdoors and making for faster travel, but they should start by making a few stable mounds at the corners of the room, just high enough to climb up on.

Rolling for mining lore.
>>
No. 852053 ID: af6e04

rolled 1, 3, 3 = 7

>curious how you know without having been there.
"Magic." Nin rolls up Isaiah's map and directs the archers to follow him down the path he traced with his finger.
>>
No. 854153 ID: d36af7

Tellus Matrem and Valeno Nahesa are stuck in a dark room full of increasingly stale and foul-smelling air, struggling to help each other up off the greasy floor and reach the door they came in through. Even though it's been nailed shut, it might still be their fastest way out of this trap.

Wisps of hissing violet flame seep through gaps in the wall of rubble at the far end of that short collapsed hallway. This faint, flickering light from behind and below outlines a leprous demonic child-thing. It bounces down the slope, giggling, scattering cascades of scree ahead of itself. Upon reaching the level flagstone floor, it lunges to bite whichever foot is closest.

Dodge? Parry and maybe kick it in the face? Pray for rescuers to arrive faster? Something else?

>>852051
>rolling for mining
>rolled 4, 1, 6 = 11
Pog ends up spearheading the direct rock-removal work, while the axe squad tidies up corners and improvises supports to prevent another collapse. Isaiah runs the wheelbarrow back and forth to the nearest known pit trap, also serving as a rear guard, while Rhea, Kent, and Mode scout ahead through flames in crevices and esoteric echo-mapping.

If everything continues to go smoothly, you might have an open passage suitable for rescuing those trapped folks ready in as little as an hour. It'll take at least another day or two to fully clear out and stabilize the whole room, though, and ideally you'd want to bring in some heavy timbers as additional bracing.

>>852053
>rolled 1, 3, 3 = 7
hehe, "leet"
Nistamatsin and the archery squad backtrack 150' and around three corners, then turn left at each of the two intersections (right at the first would be the room with the irregularly cursed pools / wells and the dire mosquitos, straight ahead would be back to the bandit's lair at the first, or the exit to the surface at the second), then meet Isaiah, who's dumping rubble into the pit.
>"Magic."
"That ain't an answer!" protests Tall Jack Rat. "All kindsa shite is magic, but it's still got rules, and not knowing the rules means you're proper for-sure fucked instead of just probably." He punctuates this rant by waving around the Deck of Many Things which he, or one of his compatriots, apparently obtained by sleight-of-hand while everyone was distracted.

"Take that angel, for example. Took her two trips to bring in a damn overpriced load of shovels. I figure if we keep our best stuff in a locked-up box, such as weighs at least as much as all them shovels together, it won't be so easy for her to steal, just in case she's a mind to do so someday down the road, see? At's what the brass calls stragedy. Gotsta figure out allied and enemy capabilities first, what we know and even more importantly what we know we don't know, then make a whole lotta plans that won't work and at least one that will. Some folks like to think they can skip past making the bad plans and get straight into the good ones, but I ain't never heard of that working out for any real army more than once, not from anybody who was really close enough to be sure. Is it only that glow-y gobbo with the paper hat and the crystal ball who you're using to see ahead, or...?" Just then you reach the pit.

Isaiah's probably going to volunteer as much information about his own strategic capabilities as Tall Jack Rat could possibly ask for. So, is the Prophet of Hanspur being pulled off wheelbarrow duty, or will you proceed along the red line here >>851957 past the abandoned barracks and through the Chapel of Green Flames but leave the bandit leader behind? Or shuffle team membership around in some other way?
>>
No. 854194 ID: 094652

rolled 6, 5, 6 = 17

Azure tries to focus on the excavation, pointing out where to focus digging and micromanaging the bandits so they maximize usage of the wheelbarrows, but there's a nagging sensation in the back of her head. She can't bury the creeping dread of what the angel sang. Her willpower and cunning are above average, but not nearly enough. Azure silently hopes that the other group members can carry for her.

After they're done saving the people behind this rubble wall (and perhaps trick them into "buying" the tools and labor hours used to save them, but Azure things a simple press-ganging would be more honorable), she's going to have a long talk with the other teammates about what they can do to survive that thing the angel said about the darkness and whatever back to work-

Azure notices that only ONE guy is carting and gets miffed; all those wheelbarrows for 24 gold and they don't even use them! She begins chirping orders to "form a bucket line"; instead of waiting for the wheelbarrow to be filled and moved all the way to the pit trap, they'll position themselves a few dozen yards from each other and trade empty wheelbarrows for full ones. Slowest guys stay close to Pog and help fill the wheelbarrows, and whoever is good at dumping gravel quickly should go last (and don't chuck the wheelbarrow down the pit!). Have Isiah wait at the pit to signal the last guy in the train and help him dump the rubble, so they and/or the wheelbarrows don't fall down the pit. This should help efficiency; having two lines of carters means the axe men need to pay attention, get stuck when navigating around each others' wheelbarrows, and they might get lost if they need to memorize a long route. And if there's a monster roaming the alleyways, they'll realize something is wrong when one of the axe men doesn't show up to trade wheelbarrows, instead of carting obliviously to their deaths into an ambush.

Other than that, looks like the excavation team doesn't need help for a few minutes. Azure is going to spend that time observing the gravel in case they accidentally missed a ruby or something. She also declares that any gems or strange objects they find must be reported to her immediately... and she'll let them keep the safe objects or buy them for more than they could hock it themselves! Anyone who tries to smuggle gems and gets caught loses any rights, though. Azure does NOT want anyone under her wing falling victim to curses.

Roll to look for jewelry and stuff for a few minutes.
>>
No. 854251 ID: af6e04

rolled 6, 4, 6 = 16

>not knowing the rules
>waving around the Deck of Many Things
Nistamatsin suddenly adopts a grave tone and leans in close, Tall Jack Rat's just face inches away from the light-chewing mouth. Nistamatsin's teeth shift around hypnotically.

"I would that you had not laid hands on that cursed deck. For now you must draw thirteen cards, quickly, or you shall suffer an unspeakable fate before tomorrow's sunrise. It is a common pattern that you mortals will learn just enough to get yourselves killed, and not a single thought more."

>is the Prophet of Hanspur being pulled off wheelbarrow duty
I see no reason to interfere with the party's excavation activities, and Isaiah seems a little spaced out. I'll leave the bandit leader behind.
>>
No. 854688 ID: d36af7

>>854194
>rolled 6, 5, 6 = 17
Azure takes over hauling rocks out to the pit, but turns out to be neither as tireless nor strong as Isaiah. She also wastes time on fruitlessly double- and triple-checking any and all shiny pebbles, in case they might be gems.

She instructs Isaiah to use "one of the other wheelbarrows," but the pricey miraculous supply drop only included that one (plus a total of thirteen shovels), so he's more or less free to accompany the archery squad on their second scouting/outflanking run.

Owen - who's got the longest and best-groomed hair out of all the bandits you've seen so far - complements the repair work on Isaiah's plate armor and offers to loan him a spear, in case he hasn't got a proper weapon of his own.

>>854251
>rolled 6, 4, 6 = 16
Tall Jack Rat puts in a better-than-average mortal effort at the unwinnable staring contest, then looks away to address his subordinates. "Oi, Eochaid. Demons can lie, right?"

"Yeah, all the time, boss. Unless they're bound not to. Simplest way to check that is if they can say 'I solemnly swear that this statement is false' without flinching. Sometimes they'll say stuff that's technically true and make it sound all wrong, though, to keep you guessing."

Tall Jack Rat tosses the Deck to Eochaid. "Well, I'm just about sick'a guessing. Get yer game face on and find out who's full'a shit here."

Eochaid claps the Deck between his hands, drops to one knee, and starts muttering under his breath.

Lt. Cmdr. Jalkaren Blessed-Is-The-Light appears, right in the middle of the hallway near the old barracks, and without preamble asks Eochaid "Are you praying to Tsathoggua?" with a tone of such disgust and incredulity as most people might reserve for 'are you eating something you chiseled off the underside of a toilet seat.'

Eochaid slowly stands back up and closes his eyes before replying in the affirmative, chin slightly raised, whole body tense like he's expecting to be decapitated at any moment and trying to face it with dignity.

A moment passes. "He's told you who I'm here for," says the lieutenant-commander. The young man with the snakeskin belt gives a stiff nod before hesitantly reopening one eye. Softly she asks "Do we have a problem?" He shakes his head, almost convulsively, like a dog with something stuck in it's ear.

Jalkaren stands there for another long moment, humming to herself and pondering, then turns to Tall Jack Rat. "Sorry about that. Politics, I'm sure you know how such things can be. Anyway, yes, Nistamatsin was most certainly lying to you. The deck in question won't do anything at all until cards are drawn from it deliberately. Priceless once-in-a-lifetime opportunity, paired with perils of such scope that I can't in good conscience recommend it to anyone, but merely carrying it won't kill you. Not on any sort of consistent timetable. At worst, it might make your life shorter and more distressing by the attractive effect such treasures are known to have on a higher class of thieves and bandits."

Then she's abruptly gone again.

Eochaid relaxes just enough to resume breathing, and promptly falls over, but Owen and short-legged Nerys catch him before he hits the floor. He vomits up a palm-sized puddle of... tar-black quicksilver? ...and declares that that was the most scared he's ever been, then regains some degree of composure and formally reports to Tall Jack Rat how there was no meaningful discrepancy between that angel's testimony and the entirely separate divine revelation which he received.
>>
No. 854696 ID: 094652

>>854688
Azure is not sure how, but the bandits have apparently forced her to do manual labor. A few minutes pass until Azure finally makes it to the pit trap and dumps the rocks in. Then she returns the cart at half the speed as Isiah did when it was full!

Azure promptly shoves the handles at the nearest axe guy with a prompt "your turn". She's going to take a few minutes breathing until she gets her wits back to analyze the current structure of the excavation. At least she found a few interesting shiny pebbles.

Azure gave orders to Isiah to make sure their leader isn't doing something shortsighted. If he did, he should try to talk down the bandits, and call on Azure specifically if things go south. She should have enough power to charm them into forgiving any minor shenanigans.

After all, Nistamatsin might be a spontaneous troll but he's not stupid enough to slam Tall Jack Rat's face into a spike pit or some other suicidally dangerous thing.
>>
No. 854766 ID: 71b86f

rolled 3, 5, 5 = 13

>>854688
"You steal from me, I lie to you. Hand over the deck and perhaps we can call it even. I'd also like to hear more about this divine revelation from Tsathoggua."

Nistamatsin holds out a bony hand. "Unless you do plan on drawing. There is great power within those cards. Power to crush that forest spirit who caused you so much suffering. Power, perhaps, even to bring those you have lost back from the dead."
>>
No. 854858 ID: 3abd97

rolled 6, 3, 4 = 13

>>854153
>through the Chapel of Green Flames
Rhea would be happy to have a conversation with said Green Flames, but we should probably finish rescuing these people first!

Continuing to work with others to do the best to clear a path through this rubble!

>right in the middle of the hallway near the old barracks
>vomits up a palm-sized puddle of... tar-black quicksilver?
Rhea would express concern, and try to check if Eochaid is all right, maybe apply a calming touch, but if that is happening down the hall and around the corner she probably didn't witness any of that.
>>
No. 856225 ID: d36af7

rolled 10, 10, 4, 23, 2, 22, 19, 23, 9, 12, 18, 14, 16 = 182

>>854858
>if that is happening down the hall and around the corner she probably didn't witness any of that.
Rhea could reasonably have picked some burnable garbage out of the bandit camp, rubble pile, and/or remains of that door Nin demolished, then left it behind to provide light for the excavation team by way of some torch-sized flames under an admonition to "play nice." That would free her up to go with the archery squad, who seem to be more directly pursuing an efficient rescue.

Tall Jack Rat claims to have never previously noticed the secret door which is now sitting open. In his defense, there was an enormous venomous snake discouraging close investigation last time he checked. The second door at the far end of the short hallway is closed, but not concealed from this side. Once it's open, that oily black puddle Eochaid coughed up (which has been following him like a lost puppy) darts ahead and slithers through a hair-thin vertical crevice in the base of that skeletal statue.

>>854766
>I'd also like to hear more about this divine revelation from Tsathoggua
>rolled 3, 5, 5 = 13
Eochaid ignores the question.

>great power within those cards
Nerys with the scarred chest is interested, though, and quietly leads Nistamatsin into the old barracks while the rest of the archery squad moves on. "Has to be thirteen, you said?" He starts to draw without waiting for confirmation, laying the cards out face-down on one of the old bunkbeds in a meticulously asymmetric divinatory pattern.
>>
No. 856240 ID: d36af7

>>856225
>rolled 10,
There's a visible bulge in the front of Nerys's pants. He looks down, eyes wide.
>rolled 10, 10,
Shimmering plate armor unfolds out of nowhere to enclose him, including gauntlets and a codpiece before he can grope to confirm. "Haha! This is amazing!"
>rolled 10, 10, 4,
Gaunt figure clad in black appears, swinging a scythe. There's a screeching sound, an acrid smell. The figure tips a hat to Nistamatsin respectfully, shuffles cards back into the deck, and departs just before Nerys's left and right halves hit the floor.

Sheared-through edges of the armor shed sparks, foul smoke, and polychromatic spectral worms.
>>
No. 856347 ID: 3d2d5f

rolled 2, 1, 4 = 7

>Rhea could reasonably have picked some burnable garbage out of the bandit camp, rubble pile, and/or remains of that door Nin demolished, then left it behind to provide light for the excavation team by way of some torch-sized flames under an admonition to "play nice." That would free her up to go with the archery squad, who seem to be more directly pursuing an efficient rescue.
Okay sounds good that let's Rhea express concern for and try and check up on Eochaid now, and see if the green fire has anything interesting to say on the way past later.
>>
No. 856396 ID: af6e04

rolled 6, 5, 4 = 15

>The figure tips a hat to Nistamatsin respectfully, shuffles cards back into the deck, and departs just before Nerys's left and right halves hit the floor.
Nistamatsin offers a slight bow, then scoops the cards up after the angel of death leaves. I'm guessing the face isn't salvageable, and whatever's left of his organs doesn't look too appetizing.

"That's unfortunate. But nothing you're incapable of fixing, right Lieutenant Commander?" Nin goes back to join the archers in the rescue effort.
>>
No. 856767 ID: d36af7

>>856347
>rolled 2, 1, 4 = 7
Eochaid is in somewhat pathetic condition, but nothing seems to be medically wrong with him that couldn't be fixed with good food, sleep, and basic personal hygiene. He identifies the tar-quicksilver-puke creature as one of Tsathoggua's "formless servants," and suspects it's here to help. It isn't a summoned creature under Eochaid's own direct control. If he wants it to do something, he'll have to ask politely.

Door leading to the collapsed hallway with the trapped folks seems to have been nailed shut from this side. Sounds of struggle within.

>>856396
>I'm guessing the face isn't salvageable,
Fairly clean cut, actually. There'd be a visible scar on the disguise, giving it an amusing resemblance to the team logo.
>and whatever's left of his organs doesn't look too appetizing.
Actually the heart, liver, and a few other bits smell downright deliciously unrepentant.
>nothing you're incapable of fixing, right Lieutenant Commander?
No response.
>>
No. 856769 ID: 094652

Azure's back to supervising the excavation. She's noticed that Pog is deviating from his regular mining habits. Usually he'd make a noise and start flailing around out of boredom, but he hasn't heard a peep from him or any wavering in his swings. Azure calls him and he shouts his status in response, but there's less childlike enthusiasm in his voice. Azure's getting worried about his already fragile mental state, but hopefully this is a sign that he'll never swing his tools around in public again.

Azure decides to focus on the excavation. Looks like the bandits were going to undermine dangerously, but she nipped that in the bud. How much longer now? (Take 10)
>>
No. 856791 ID: 3abd97

>Door leading to the collapsed hallway with the trapped folks seems to have been nailed shut from this side. Sounds of struggle within.
Nin we have another door for you to break down!

...hey where is he?
>>
No. 856794 ID: af6e04

rolled 2, 6, 4 = 12

>deliciously unrepentant.
Hmmm I think I have time for a quick snack. It's not like the body's intact anyway, right? Nin will hurry it up if he hears Rhea's call though.

I'll take the face too but won't put it on yet.

>No response.
That's a little disquieting. Any way I can tell if she's still scrying me?
>>
No. 857109 ID: d36af7

>>856794
>quick snack
Fairly satisfying, but it seems like that really super-delicious smell is actually something else nearby. Not in this same room, but probably the same floor of the dungeon.
>Any way I can tell if she's still scrying me?
You could disassemble the bunk beds, use some select bits of Nerys's leftover innards, find a hand mirror somewhere, and do about 10-15 minutes of ritual setup for a pentagram-reinforced pillow fort which would probably be able to notice scrying or other spatial anomalies across it's borders, particularly if the one doing the scrying was so well known and using such a strong link. Making that kind of detection unobtrusive and portable is a 4th circle effect.
>>856791
>...hey where is he?
Last any of the bandits saw Nin or Nerys was that argument outside the old barracks, just before passing through the Chapel of Green Flames. Sorta figured they were taking over for Owen and Emrys (who's got the fewest intact teeth among the bandits), since everybody knows spears are good counter-cavalry so it's smart to keep at least one on rear guard and Owen loaned his to Isaiah.

>>856769
>How much longer now?
"About five minutes less than the last time you asked, ma'am."
>(Take 10)
We've been over this. That doesn't work the way you want it to work. Unrolled action means you're treating it as trivial. Spacing out, slacking off, doing a half-assed job, something like that. Maybe some cursory supervision and cliched encouragement, alternating with preening her feathers and re-painting her nails.
> Looks like the bandits were going to undermine dangerously,
No, see, determining NPC actions and the threats and obstacles you're facing is mostly MY job, as the GM...
>but she nipped that in the bud.
...and you're supposed to be describing your characters' attempted actions and intentions, rather than the presumptive outcomes of those actions.

>>
No. 857130 ID: 094652

rolled 4, 1, 5 = 10

>>857109
sorry Azure feels better now and decides to calculate the remaining time based on current observations.
>>
No. 857393 ID: d36af7

>>857130
Based on Rhea and Kent's estimates of the thickness of the collapsed region, you might have a crawl-navigable passage open in as little as 40 minutes.
>>
No. 857591 ID: d36af7

Nistamatsin catches up with Rhea, Isaiah, and the remainder of the bandit archer squad. Owen and Emrys were trying to pull the nails out with a pair of pliers someone found, and making slow progress, but Nin's spear can take the door off it's hinges much more efficiently.

Just before you get the door open, there's a sickening crunch from the other side.

Three figures within, one supine, about the size of a human adult, dressed in a foreign style from far across the desert, and missing a foot. The second is a mound-builder with Courier's Guild insignia, upright, attempting to defend the maimed one from the third.

The third figure, crouching, naked, swallows a mouthful of something half-chewed and then shrieks at the rescue party, spewing spittle and bone fragments: "Mine! Found the meat first! Won't share! Not yours, Nista!" It's shape flickers in the firelight - not an ordinary illusion caused by shifting shadows, the actual form is uncertain. Sometimes it more nearly resembles an orcish child, or a goblin adult, or a shriveled bat corpse with shark teeth, or a horrid little angel with wings like an enormous horsefly. The web of scars and pustules is more consistent, moment-to-moment, than it's gross anatomy, as if sickness and injury are the main things holding it together.
>>
No. 857657 ID: af6e04

rolled 3, 3, 2 = 8

>pentagram-reinforced pillow fort
Yess, perhaps the bandits have a hand mirror.

>"Mine! Found the meat first! Won't share! Not yours, Nista!"
Nistamatsin hands the spear back to whoever is close. "I have no desire for the meat. I only wish to take the face." And hoping that's not too ambiguous, he'll quickly try to snatch the little plague imp's face off.

Do I know how it knows my name?
>>
No. 857687 ID: 3abd97

rolled 1, 1, 2 = 4

Oh no a (non-heroic and not on a divine mission) demon is eating those poor people!

Rhea will draw and light a cinnamon incense. It won't like that at all, and Nin... claims to have built up some kind of tolerance from recreational exposure. Rhea's not sure that's how that works but even if she incapacitates Nin along with the other one there's plenty of non-demons in the group right now.
>>
No. 857736 ID: d36af7

>>857687
>rolled 1, 1, 2 = 4
Rhea charges in, rams a smoldering stick of cinnamon incense up the contagion-child's nose, then sternly informs it that human flesh is a sometimes food, as well as enumerating a few of the most egregious failures of etiquette in that outburst. It sleepily apologizes and joins Team Magic Sword, at least temporarily.
>not on a divine mission
Not anymore!

Rhea's trail of footprints on the greasy floor burst into flame. Someone should probably do something about that, before the fire causes additional injuries.

Jalkaren whispers to Nin and anyone else nearby (except the other demon) that Valeno Nahesa's wounds are repairable, but doing so takes long enough that it should be done back at the Black Boar Inn or some place equivalently secure. Stopping the bleeding will be necessary to make sure the vishkanya survives that long.

Tall Jack Rat's gang and this new... recruit... are not welcome at the inn, for reasons which should be obvious. Might want to think about setting up a defensible camp right outside the dungeon. Couple of max-size ladders from the charm bracelet could be a good starting point for constructing a watchtower, for example.

Tall Jack Rat asks where the blood and flecks of organ-meat all over Nin's hands, forearms, chin, neck, and chest came from...
>>857657
>snatch the little plague imp's face off.
>rolled 3, 3, 2 = 8
...then blinks in confusion, mutters "Dammit, where'd he run off to now?" and turns back to either check the Chapel of Green Flame, or help Eochaid and the pint-sized faceless nonentity figure out how to open up an apparent hollow space under the giant skeleton statue.

>Do I know how it knows my name?
To know enough for that insult, it must have been serving someone who knew you personally after the wedding. Presumably some more powerful demon who helped out the church or Orcus at some point, which... doesn't really narrow things down. Can't ask directly until it sobers up and has a mouth again, of course.

>imp
Cherub, actually. Comparable to a lantern archon in some respects. Slightly more powerful than an imp, larger and more combat-oriented, though still solidly chump-tier among demons in almost every respect apart from the ability to teleport at will with a 50lb payload. Long as it's working for you, there's an alternative available to avoid ruinous angelic freight charges, though that likely comes with it's own potential downsides.
>>
No. 857852 ID: af6e04

rolled 1, 2, 6 = 9

>Jalkaren whispers
Nin asks where Jalkaren was while he was in the old barracks. He was worried!

>fire
It'll have to wait...

>Stopping the bleeding will be necessary
Nistamatsin eagerly scampers to the injured vishkanya and cheekily assures them that he's not the same demon who ate their foot, he just stole that demon's face. He'll try to patch up the bloody stump with his first aid supplies, frequently running his hand across Valeno's leg and occasionally stopping to bow his head down near the source of the bleeding and inhale deeply.
>>
No. 857961 ID: d36af7

>>857852
>where Jalkaren was
"Thousands of miles away, as I said. There was a rare opportunity to 'break the bank' at a mafiya-owned casino without breaking any laws. The process of actually doing so, and delivering proceeds therefrom to a charitable knightly order which provides essential services to orphans and refugees, involved some challenges which demanded my undivided attention. Why do you ask? Is there something I missed, which you need to unburden yourself by confessing?"

>rolled 1, 2, 6 = 9
Nistamatsin successfully applies a tourniquet and sterile bandages to Valeno Nahesa's ankle. He also gets stabbed in the eye by a poisoned needle with no apparent source. Doesn't seem to have penetrated very deeply, but yow does that stuff sting.

>>/questdis/119496
Right around the same time that medical care is wrapping up, Karol shouts "stand back!" and Kent kicks a chunk of rubble aside, opening a hole past the collapsed hallway. It's only about 3' diameter, but that's enough for everyone on your team (except Pog) to at least crawl through single file.

What were Rhea, Isaiah, Tellus Matrem, and Tall Jack Rat's archery squad doing during that time?
>>
No. 857971 ID: 094652

>>857961
Pog tells the others that Azure needs to go in first because mining guidelines. Azure is confused but whatever, not like a cave-in could permakill her anyway.

Azure was going to complain in general about the situation, but then she saw Valeno's recently bandaged stump. Azure asks the others why they shouldn't pile on the cure spells right now.

Other than that, time to leave. And they're taking the shovels and wheelbarrow with them.
>>
No. 857986 ID: af6e04

rolled 6, 3, 5 = 14

>>857961
>unburden yourself by confessing?
>stabbed in the eye by a poisoned needle
The cherub face first spreads into a wicked grin as Nistamatsin begins to say something to nobody in particular, but it suddenly twists into a shocked expression as the demon lets out a loud shriek. Am I bleeding?

Either way, Nin's going to bite either Valeno or Tellus, whichever one looks more guilty.
>>
No. 858002 ID: 094652

rolled 3, 5, 6 = 14

>>857986
Azure is slightly shocked by the yelp of pain but Nistamatsin's expression and hand positions are quite clear.

Azure provides medical aid! Finally, a chance to show off her medical and magical expertise! Time to use medical attention and Cure Light Wounds - But first:

"Hold him down! I can't get the needle out if he's thrashing!" (Someone please assist Azure)
>>
No. 858023 ID: d36af7

Azure Youngmason attempts to provide medical care to what initially appears to be a diseased demon she's never met before, and http://www.casualvillain.com/Unsounded/comic/ch09/ch09_15.html loses a finger for her trouble. Azure's dominant hand is now on fire.

Nistamatsin's stolen face is covered in disgusting grease, which, having been spattered with Azure's blood, is now also on fire. As such, it won't be an effective disguise for very much longer. Losing an eye - and not knowing how that'll translate once the stolen face is off - requires a roll for that asymmetry phobia.

Valeno Nahesa has quietly retrieved both mouth-darts and is starting to flee toward the Chapel of Green Flame, but hasn't quite figured whether hopping or crawling will work better right now.
>>
No. 858029 ID: 3d2d5f

rolled 6, 1, 2 = 9

>What were Rhea, Isaiah, Tellus Matrem, and Tall Jack Rat's archery squad doing during that time?
Since Nin someone is already tending to the injured Rhea will play diplomat and handle introductions with Tellus Martem. Time permitting, she may take the archers and do the same with those green flames (sorry to have rushed past without introductions before, but lives hung in the balance).

>Rhea's trail of footprints on the greasy floor burst into flame. Someone should probably do something about that, before the fire causes additional injuries.
Between the water association and being generally inflammable Isaiah seems well suited to tamping out flames. (And/or Rhea could admonish them to "play nice" as well).

(I'll respond to the eye darting and the latest medical disaster after after Rhea gets caught up).
>>
No. 858039 ID: af6e04

rolled 5, 4, 4 = 13

>roll for that asymmetry phobia.
Hahaha rolling. Nin will try to rip the face off if he can.
>>
No. 858040 ID: af6e04

rolled 4, 6, 1 = 11

>>858023
If Geoffrey's too far away to prevent Azure from blowing up, he'll start yelling at the bandits to get back out of the tunnel.
>>
No. 858529 ID: d36af7

rolled 1, 3, 1 = 5

Geoffrey Vargas, peeking through the excavation, sees Azure's arm and some of the surroundings ignite. Fearing the worst, he shouts "fire in the hole, everybody out!" and heroically leads the way back toward the dungeon's nearest known exit. Pog picks up the rear - literally scooping up any apparent stragglers in his arms.

Kent bounces ahead of this retreat and hears a voice down that pit trap Isaiah was dumping the rubble into. Sounds vaguely like a small dog, screeching profanity in High Draconic.

>>858039
Failure by one. Nin is mentally stunned for, at minimum, a few crucial seconds. Rolling to see what other damage that burst of primal terror does on it's way through his mind.
>>
No. 858532 ID: d36af7

>>858529
>rolled 1, 3, 1 = 5
Fairly minimal effects, just those few seconds of stunning.
>>
No. 858614 ID: 3abd97

rolled 1, 3, 4 = 8

Okay, assuming providing introductions in >>858029
hasn't left Rhea unable to respond, she'll try and treat Azure's injury. No need to let her explode unnecessarily, and it's not as if Rhea is afraid of fire!

Willing to use Calming Touch or to use Spontaneous Casting for Least True Healing or Celestial Healing, as appropriate. (I'm not really sure what level of care is appropriate to stop the missing finger from fueling immolation).
>>
No. 858618 ID: af6e04

rolled 1, 2, 6 = 9

>heroically leads the way back toward the dungeon's nearest known exit.
Saving lives here!

>a voice down that pit trap
If Geoffrey catches up to Kent he'll ask the flighty elf what the holdup is.
>>
No. 858859 ID: d36af7

>>858614
After a Least True Healing each on Azure and the vishkanya, to get the stumps healed over so they don't start bleeding again or become infected, and a few Calming Touches, the situation seems to be stabilized. Flames from Azure's hand are successfully transplanted to the greasy puddle on the floor, where they crackle merrily and leave Rhea's friends alone so long as they are left alone in turn.

>>858618
Before Kent can answer, the voice down below barks "Some svern completely blocked the gixustrat crawlspace! That's what the verthicha holdup is!"
>>
No. 858885 ID: 094652

>>858859
Right... Azure would like her finger back now. Oh crap, it burned up didn't it.

Well, hopefully it'll grow back the next time she respawns. She kind of needs that finger this year for... things.

Also, that was plain unlucky. Nobody helped with holding the patients down, and Azure tried to help the wretched little brat before assisting Nistamatsin. Why did she DO that? Take two, Azure's going to WAIT for someone else to hold Nistamatsin down, who is presumably still in horrible agony as the needle has not been removed, and THEN she'll try (roll) to fix his ass.

She meant eye. pupil. cornea.

whatever.
>>
No. 858914 ID: af6e04

rolled 5, 5, 5 = 15

After Rhea calms him down Nistamatsin's horrid shrieks taper into pathetic whimpers, and he musters the courage to pull out the dart and peel off the stolen face to survey the damage.
>>
No. 858917 ID: af6e04

rolled 6, 6, 2 = 14

>Some svern completely blocked the gixustrat crawlspace! That's what the verthicha holdup is!
Assuming if the pheonix were going to blow up she'd have gone through with it already. Geoffrey offers to help clear out the crawlspace if the source of the voice identifies itself.
>>
No. 859012 ID: b45626

>>858859
Yelling at the top of your lungs in a confined space with very little oxygen does things to your head.... especially if you start hyperventilating from anger...

The last thing Valeno remembers is the creature coming for them, but being too weak from lack of oxygen and covered in slippery slime, dropped their knife and instead tried to kick the thing in the face...

Which didn't end well.....

There was a sharp pain followed by even WORSE pain and blood. LOTS OF BLOOD.

Then darkness.....and then waking up to the same monster sniffing your fresh.. STUMP?

"I CaN'T FeeL mY FoOT?! WHaaa-didyoudotoMYfoot?" Valeno mutters, if this thing thinks its going to chomp on Valeno for free it's got another thing coming....

With a dart in the eye, Valeno "quickly" crawls, no, hops, no definitely crawls away.

"ThE DeMon is GONNA EaT Me! HELP!" Valeno wonders if any one else can hear their words, all they hear is more screaming behind them, the demon must be in a ton of pain.

"EyE FoR aN Ey-FOOT."

Valeno passes out from the trauma.
>>
No. 859016 ID: b45626

>>859012
(Hopefully this is okay for my absence, and i still cannot roll the dice, hopefully this post does for me.)
>>
No. 859021 ID: 2e6f77

rolled 3, 1, 3 = 7

Azure is miffed about this unfortunate string of consecutive failures on everyone's part.

Azure shouts at the other bandits to look for her finger in and around the imp in case it hasn't fully burned/digested yet, then mentally prepares herself to cast a healing spell on whoever needs it next. But for now, she'll spam resistance on everyone nearby because "Wacky Slapstick Hijinks: The Sequel-Dequel" is apparently on for the next ten minutes.

And she hides behind a bandit because she has a sinking suspicion some other sharp thing is inevitably going to try and set her blood on fire again.
>>
No. 859067 ID: af6e04

rolled 3, 3, 3 = 9

>>859016
Gotcha!
>>
No. 859078 ID: 3abd97

In case you're wondering what went wrong, the proper syntax would be "dice 3d6" without quotes. It's case sensitive (so "Dice" breaks it) and the space is required too. If you're on a phone, autocorrect will sometimes mess it up for you.

In >>859012 you used "Roll3d6" (missing space, wrong word) and in >>859016 you used "dice3d6" (missing space).

There's also an faq that covers stuff like dice mechanics if you forget.
https://tgchan.org/kusaba/news.php?p=faq
>>
No. 859102 ID: e2ba8e

rolled 6, 6, 5 = 17

>>859078
Thank you very much, my computer browser apparently has it saved as Roll3d6, and yeah, mobile has it autocorrecting over and over. Ugh. Again, I appreciate it.
>>
No. 859570 ID: d36af7

>Valeno passes out from the trauma
>rolled 6, 6, 5 = 17
Nope! Still agonizingly conscious, but now suffering fever, hallucinations, and agnosia. All visible faces appear to Valeno to be melting and burning like wax, or rotten with maggots and exposed bone, or otherwise totally obscured by violent and/or supernatural force, something different whenever they look away. Until that's been sorted out, individuals can only be visually identified by their equipment and approximate height, though it's still possible to distinguish and track among a crowd with careful continuous attention.

>>858917
Niknak Tarbucket and associates lecture Kent, Geoffrey, and the orcs about their names and deeds. Mostly petty theft, crude pranks based on clever mechanical traps, and running away from any real problems, but they puff it all up like the saga of some ancient conqueror-king and his superheroic knights. In short, they're kobolds.
>>
No. 859579 ID: d36af7

>>858029
>Time permitting, she may take the archers and do the same with those green flames (sorry to have rushed past without introductions before, but lives hung in the balance).

These flames in the chapel are not supposed to be green. They have been burning for many years with no fuel besides the miasma of spiritual corruption bubbling up from below, and their own self-loathing. If they were organic, rather than elementals, they'd be laying naked on the floor, vibrating, clawing at their skin in a frantic effort to get clean. Still, they're lucid enough to answer simple questions, and seem to take comfort from the opportunity to serve in an oracular context. What do you want to know?
>>
No. 859591 ID: 3abd97

>Until that's been sorted out, individuals can only be visually identified by their equipment and approximate height, though it's still possible to distinguish and track among a crowd with careful continuous attention.
This strikes me as a wonderful and twisted way to introduce our characters to the newest player to join the group.

OOC: Hello there, I'm the shortest of the various terrifying abominations, the one carrying various cooking implements and followed by floating flames.

>>859579
Oh the poor dears! That's terrible! Figuring out a purification ritual for this site and getting these flames on an alternate fuel source just became important.

>What do you want to know?
Anything they know about what went wrong in this hospital, or how to fix it's current problems, or even the most immediate and pressing problems to address would be most helpful.

Information about others that have come through this chapel might be helpful too. Understanding the people and creature who dwell here will only aid our efforts.
>>
No. 859618 ID: d36af7

>what went wrong in this hospital,
The green bonfire on the left says they were attacked by an outside force. The one on the right nods and agrees, yes, the hospital's own senior leadership destroyed itself. All of them without exception stood and fought together, bound in common faith as brothers; aye, says the other, one dissented and turned traitor. Dark forces were trucked with, hospitality and generosity repaid by atrocity and murder; yes indeed, says the other, the healers were pure, benevolent, and strict pacifists, so everyone involved got precisely what they'd asked for.

They go on like that, contradicting and undercutting each other while claiming to be in perfect agreement. Could be part of the whole 'oracle' deal, or maybe isolation and pollution drove them barking mad. A sufficiently advanced riddle is indistinguishable from gibberish.

>how to fix it's current problems
"You must heal, restore them!" says the left flame, and the right "Yes, obliterate and kill!" but they both truly agree there's a... fountain? Pond? Flametongue doesn't exactly have the right technical vocabulary for waterworks. A circular thing, like these bronze brazier-bowls they're sitting in, but deeper, and with liquid. That's where the problem ended, and will begin.

Also if they could get some nice dry wood to chew on, that'd be nice. Dry all the way through, not just something fresh-cut that isn't damp to the touch! Charcoal would be alright though it's sorta flavorless. Ideally, enough material to spawn a new guardian-beast.
>>
No. 859785 ID: 3abd97

>nice dry wood to chew on
Of course!

>Ideally, enough material to spawn a new guardian-beast.
A guardian beast?


After fire chatting and medical care, we might want to see about Jalkaren's advice of heading outside and setting up a defensible camp. The shovels and tools might be useful, there!
>>
No. 859803 ID: af6e04

rolled 3, 1, 5 = 9

>>859570
To clarify, have we already unblocked the crawlspace or are we receiving this lecture through a pile of rubble?

Anyway, Geoffrey says his boss is looking to ask the kobold some questions about some forest spirit but he's not sure where the bloody bastard ran off to. Also mentions that there's a deadly half-blind little devil running around biting off fingers. Speaking of which, Geoffrey directs one of the orcs to run back and check on the rest of the group.
>>
No. 859805 ID: af6e04

rolled 3, 3, 5 = 11

Nistamatsin refuses to move until somebody tells him exactly how horridly disfigured he has become.
>>
No. 859830 ID: 094652

rolled 1, 3, 4 = 8

>>859805
Azure will tend to Nistamatsin's face IF he promises not to fidget around so much. Hopefully that eyeball is still salvageable. Unlike her finger, which has apparently burned away. She has two charges of Least True Healing so if her prognosis for "repairable eyeball via healing magic" is a true positive or false positive, she'll cast that.
>>
No. 859851 ID: d36af7

rolled 18, 20, 8 = 46

>>859803
>are we receiving this lecture through a pile of rubble?
Yes.
>directs one of the orcs to run back and check on the rest of the group.
>rolled 3, 1, 5 = 9
No volunteers. Karol says Mikhail's Marauders did siege and sapping work sometimes, and one big rule he remembers is, once there's been a fire AND a collapse in the same passage, nobody goes in until an engineer - a real one, not some meathead like Pog - says it's safe. If the thing that was on fire is the architect who went in to check, well, then you gotta either find another way around, or chuck it all and go home.

>>859785
>A guardian beast?
Thanks to a deliberate quirk of life-affirming local geomancy, rather than ash and smoke and choke-damp, the fire's excreta will form a living serpentine creature. Small at first, grows when fed further. If they can keep one alive for a year and a day it'll gain magical powers, including teleportation anywhere within the hospital. Until then it's just an ordinary venomous snake, though perhaps of unusual size. They got pretty close once. Then some other visitors stole the guardian's skin and bones and ate the rest. Used to be easier and faster to warm up a new guardian, but... well.

They absently remind you "don't go down the well."

>>859830
The face Nin shucked off is a total loss, burned to a crisp. His real face doesn't have any apparent organs sufficiently differentiated as to be vulnerable. The needle barely even left a scratch, and the fire never touched it.
>>859805
"My dog has no eyes."
"How does he vision?"
"Terrible!"

Since the consensus seem to be moving toward regrouping and departure, but there's been a fair amount of splitting the party and then standing around talking or doing other time-consuming/stealth-defeating things, I'll roll one last set of wandering monsters to see how much trouble there is on the way out.
>>
No. 859858 ID: d36af7

>>859851
>rolled 18, 20, 8
No trouble on the way out. Clearing a hole big enough for the kobolds to squeeze through is reasonably quick, since they're so skinny. Medical problems are mostly patched up, apart from Valeno's missing foot (the stump has been bandaged enough to stop the bleeding, but it might be infected with something weird, which would explain the persistent hallucinations) and the cherub's missing face.

Hilltop above and behind the Mouth is being evaluated as a campsite for anyone who shouldn't show their face (or lack thereof) back in town, and forward supply base for everyone else. No trees on the hill, so it's got good visibility, but that might be a double-edged sword. Want to check out other possible sites, or options for improving the underground bandit lair?

Wherever it goes, how are you laying out that camp? I can find cost and setup-time numbers for anything from tents of various sizes, including yurts, up to massive stone fortifications or prefabricated barracks with magical plumbing and HVAC. You don't need to worry about the exact details of who's standing watch and when, but putting some thought into where guards will be posted (and how much you're trusting Tall Jack Rat's bandits to handle security without supervision) would be sensible.
>>
No. 860106 ID: af6e04

rolled 2, 2, 6 = 10

>No trouble on the way out.
Looks like poor Nerys gets to wait another day for us to scoop up what's left of him for possible resurrection.

>I can find cost and setup-time numbers for anything from tents of various sizes, including yurts, up to massive stone fortifications or prefabricated barracks with magical plumbing and HVAC.
Well tents seem like the way to go for now, but we only brought a few. We'll need a tent big enough to hold everyone's supplies and food. Ten small two-man tents should be enough for the bandits to sleep in. (Four squads of five, if I'm reading correctly?) Maybe another large tent to cook in.

>Want to check out other possible sites, or options for improving the underground bandit lair?
Trying to improve the bandit lair is probably the best option right now since it provides shelter and we won't have to worry about an attack from Drusilla, but I imagine everybody is loathe to go back underground. We might just need to wait for more information from Niknak before we set anything up.

>how much you're trusting Tall Jack Rat's bandits to handle security without supervision
Seems like they've done well enough for themselves so far. Of course I'll tell everybody in the PC party to watch their valuables.

>The needle barely even left a scratch
As for matters of more immediate attention, Nistamatsin will scratch himself in the same spot on the other side, try to figure out some form of warding that'll keep the cherub from disappearing when it sobers up, ask all the bandits if they have a hand mirror, and personally oversee this delicious serpentine creature's recovery.
>>
No. 860111 ID: 094652

>>859858
>Medical problems are mostly patched up, apart from Valeno's missing foot [...] and the cherub's missing face.
No mention of Azure's finger? Oh good, they found it and stitched it back on then.

>Want to check out other possible sites, or options for improving the underground bandit lair?
Azure suggests to Nistamatsin that they "expand" the underground base in the near future, what with all the new shovels they have. They could make a small log fortress right above the lair, then take some time shoveling downwards to make a new exit. Better air circulation, and a second exit in case enemy units decide to block all the regular escapes and win by attrition. Besides, restoring the hospital is going to look better with a few additional wings, right?

>How much you're trusting Tall Jack Rat's bandits to handle security without supervision
Azure's proud of her sheer talent. But she's been taught to keep an eye on her employees no matter how loyal they claim to be (too bad she's also too distracted by sex and sensation to remember this in regards to Pog's... incidents). Since Azure is in minimal danger of dying from a couple literal backstabs, she figures that Nistamatsin, Pog, and herself can take shifts watching the bandits' tents, if Tall Jack Rat is willing to accept constant surveillance of his housing and not individual bodies.

Speaking of which, Azure figures they've kicked the hornet's nest by now and should not sleep down there. As for the tents themselves, you're in a forest and you have big pointy pieces of metal. Just stab some cloth into trees to act as your giant tent, use nails if possible but weak-level swords will also work.

Also, they ought to go back to town and buy extra tools and rations so Jalkaren doesn't pull what she did again. Like lumberjack axes.
>>
No. 860122 ID: d36af7

>>>860106
>hand mirror
One of them has a steel comb with a few square inches of smooth polished handle. Why? The scratch was already healed by magic, there's no mark left.
>tents
Pole, 6’ (TL0). For pitching tents, fishing, or prodding items. $5, 3 lbs.
Pole, 10’ (TL0). For things you wouldn’t touch with a 6’ pole. $8, 5 lbs.
Tent, 1-Man (TL0). Includes ropes; no poles needed. $50, 5 lbs.
Tent, 2-Man (TL0). Includes ropes; requires one 6-foot pole. $80, 12 lbs.
Tent, 4-Man (TL0). Includes ropes; requires 2 poles. $150, 30 lbs.
Tent, 20-Man (TL1). Includes ropes; requires 16 poles. $300, 100 lbs.
Legionary Tent (TL2). Made from treated leather panels, this tent is more water- and windresistant than a cloth one. It covers a 10’¥10’ area (sleeps six to eight comfortably) and, at 6’ in height, is tall enough for standing in the center. A legionary-style tent gives +1 to any Survival specialty. DR 1, HP 14. $225, 45 lbs.
Yurt (TL1). This is a round, collapsible woodenlattice framework, including a domed top, covered by a heavy felt shell. Yurts are more durable than other tents (offering cover DR 1) and cannot be knocked down by a single blow to a support.
Yurts insulated with tapestries and rugs, or additional layers of felt, grant +1 to Survival (Plains) – or to any Survival specialty, in a cold climate – but have double cost and 1.5 times weight.
A 10’-diameter yurt (DR 1, HP 20): $480, 200 lbs.
A 15’-diameter yurt (DR 1, HP 28): $1,200, 500 lbs.
Blanket: A warm bedroll. $20, 4 lbs.
Sleeping Fur: A winter bedroll, suitable for ice caves, arctic adventures, etc. $50, 8 lbs.
Enchanted versions which are self-heating, always stay dry, repel vermin, and have other useful functions are known, but not available off-the-shelf at the general store.
Door (TL0). A framed door that can be placed in an opening in a tent or a temporary building. As focal points for visitors, portable doors are often elaborately decorated. Provides cover DR 1. DR 1, HP 23. $210, 70 lbs.
Partition (TL0). A long cloth or straw panel hung from ceiling beams or tent poles, turning a large space into individual rooms. Has no DR or cover DR, and can take 12 HP before being slashed to ribbons. A 6’¥10’ partition: $80, 33 lbs.
Beaded Curtain (TL1). A series of cords on which objects such as beads, bamboo segments, or shells are strung. Provides no cover DR, but visually divides an area into subareas, and offers light concealment (-2 to hit; see p. B408). Passing through it makes noise (see Alarms, p. 123). Also acts as a deterrent to flying insects. DR 0, HP 5. $30, 2 lbs.
Carpet (TL1). Carpets, produced by tightly tying knots together on a loom in a thick, durable weave, can be used as portable floors. A typical rug: $45, 1 lb. per square foot.
Folding Screen (TL1). A set of hinged panels, made from wood or a frame filled with paper or wicker, providing a freestanding barrier. Provides no cover DR, and any attack knocks it over. A 6’¥6’ partition (DR 0, HP 14): $400, 55 lbs.
X-Frame Chair (TL1). One of the earliest forms of portable furniture was the X-frame chair: a folding wooden frame with a cloth or leather seat, essentially identical to a modern folding director’s chair. $70, 30 lbs.
X-Frame Table (TL1). Similar to an X-frame chair, but larger, and with neither arms nor back. A 3’¥3’ table, seating at least four: $200, 75 lbs.
>Nerys
The rest of the bandits have arrived, and noted that he's missing, but not found the body. Jalkaren's divinations establish that Nerys isn't currently alive, and furthermore that his soul still exists, but has somehow constructed and/or located a satisfactory afterlife with abnormal rapidity, or possibly been ensnared by an entity of great power, so resurrection would be infeasible even with the physical remains.

>>860111
>extra tools and rations
Group Basics (TL0). Basic equipment for Cooking and Survival skill for a group. Cook pot, rope, hatchet, etc., for 3-8 campers. $50, 20 lbs.
Q-rations cost $5 per meal, six meals (two man-days) weigh a pound.
Pemmican costs $4.50 per meal, and four meals weigh a pound. Not magically perfect nutrition, but it's pretty good, and less likely to rub druids or Green elves the wrong way.
Trail rations built around dried peas and hardtack, with some cheese or nuts or candied fruit for variety, averages $2 and half a pound per meal.
Fresh stuff can be cheaper - as little as $0.50 per meal if you're buying straight from a farmer at harvest time, or no cost but time, random encounters, and maybe ammo when you do your own hunting and foraging - but tends to weigh a pound or more per meal, and has a very limited shelf life.
Dwarven-style hardtack is $6, one pound per meal, tastes even nastier than regular hardtack to most non-dwarves (and makes Azure homesick), but anyone who's eaten at least two meals a day for the past month gets +3 to resist poison.

>Azure's finger?
Nothing left of it but char beyond the second knuckle, so -1 to dex-based rolls with that hand until she gets it regrown, either by angelic intervention or her own innate ability to respawn when killed.

"Mostly patched" means there's a laundry list of similarly minor problems which could be sorted out with a day of rest and resupply in friendly circumstances - a rather literal laundry list, considering how many of the action items involve hygiene or clothing repair. Those bandits have been sleeping in their armor, trying to do first aid with grimy rags, moss, and the occasional splash of laudanum or liquor, for months. Anyone standing downwind might be forgiven for thinking it'd been even longer than that.

>take some time shoveling downwards
Digging a vertical shaft down from the top is the least efficient way to do mining (short of elaborately self-defeating stunts or use of inadequate tools), because any material you remove, you then need to haul straight back up the shaft, working directly against the pull of gravity. The deeper the hole, the harder that gets. A horizontal tunnel or shallow ramp is better, and digging up from below is best of all, when it can be arranged. Regardless, there's at least fifty feet of solid material in the way, maybe hundreds depending on your angle of approach, some of which is likely to be solid stone rather than rubble or soil, so you'd need picks as well as shovels... long story short, you could have Pog work on that, all day, every day, for two months or more and not be done.

Regardless, Lieutenant-Commander Jalkaren Blessed-Is-The-Light doesn't want the ruined hospital heavily modified, just cleared out and restored. Ripping holes in the structure without due consideration of subtle geomantic effects could potentially make the situation much worse.

>Just stab some [...] trees
Tall Jack Rat visibly flinches on hearing this, and points out that Drusilla's attack probably had something to do with some sort of ecological disruption, so he'd rather not take any needless risks like that. http://wondermark.com/c1362/ Less convenient sleeping arrangements is a small price to pay to avoid being drawn and quartered by animate rosebushes and dire wolves. Or at least, Mikhail seemed to think so, while that was happening to him. If what Tall Jack Rat (and the other survivors) overheard while fleeing is anything to go by, being tortured to death put their former captain in an uncharacteristically apologetic and solicitous mood, though they're not really sure whether the xenophobic druid bothered to answer any of his questions.
>>
No. 860126 ID: 094652

>Nerys isn't currently alive,
Azure sighs in her mind. Even if everyone would resurrect just like her, she hoped the first day on the job wouldn't begin with "accidents", because then the subsequent resurrections will be followed by even more "accidents" and "slapstick-murder", that will eventually lead to everyone developing the same bad habit of dying as she had. That's a bad thing, everyone other than Azure is going back to permadeath rules once this job is-
>but has somehow constructed and/or located a satisfactory afterlife with abnormal rapidity,
"Oh, good for hi-"
>or possibly been ensnared by an entity of great power
"..."
>so resurrection would be infeasible even with the physical remains
"..."

As Azure's wings droop in guilt, Azure decides to sing a simple funeral ballad for the dearly departed Nerys, for Tall Jack Rat's sake. Then she'll ask around, see if anyone knows where Nerys was last seen before she was pwned by a grue; no sense letting anyone else echo his steps to their deaths.

>at least fifty feet of solid material
Oh dang. Azure thought that staircase was twenty feet, tops. (Because she was flapping her wings instead of counting stairs)

>tents
... On second thought, they could just bar the entrance room doors so that any enemies who burst through have just enough velocity to hit their groins on the trapdoor wall before falling in. Plenty of space and a clear escape route. OR, they might not be able to damage the trees but they can place a few rocks on the mouth entrance to hold some cloth in place.
>>
No. 860134 ID: 3abd97

rolled 6, 1, 6 = 13

>>859851
>Hospital has a fire-born serpent guardian
Another point for unintentional-but-totally-valid symbolic representation in the team logo.

>>859858
>how are you laying out that camp?
Rhea's probably not the best reference for setting up surface-shelters or defensive fortifications. Now, organizing food preparation, chores, and some kind of much needed cleaning regimen is much more in her area of expertise.

>>860122
>Nerys isn't currently alive, and furthermore that his soul still exists, but has somehow constructed and/or located a satisfactory afterlife with abnormal rapidity, or possibly been ensnared by an entity of great power, so resurrection would be infeasible even with the physical remains.
Rhea will say a prayer for the departed. (A more involved ceremony should probably await the recovery of Nerys' remains).

How are Nerys' comrades taking it?
>>
No. 860147 ID: af6e04

rolled 6, 1, 6 = 13

>Jalkaren's divinations establish that Nerys isn't currently alive
Nistamatsin clears things up for everyone who is curious. Nerys was killed by a spirit summoned by the Deck of Many Things. It was a good draw overall, too bad about that one fatal card though. Nin can confirm he died quickly and painlessly - in fact the demon has never seen somebody get destroyed so efficiently before.

>The scratch was already healed by magic, there's no mark left.
Nin says it's for a magic ritual. Would this anti-divination ritual work in a tent, or is it just for pillow forts? Seems like a useful thing to be able to do, even if Jalkaren's in communication with us again.

>tent prices
Two twenty-man tents seems the most efficient way to go. This way we'll have plenty of room for supplies.

>blanket
Probably should get one for everybody.

>Fresh stuff can be cheaper
I see no reason NOT to try get as much cheap fresh food as we can from any nearby farmers, since we're such a short walk from town. Well, I guess one potential downside could be the locals figuring out we're working with the bandits. But that's a risk no matter what we do. Of course, something with a better shelf life should be kept for when that option's not available. We can transport it all quickly and effortlessly if we get the cherub on our side. How about that warding?

>Tall Jack Rat visibly flinches on hearing this
Nin makes it clear that nobody's to touch any trees. What kind of information can we get from the kobolds? Hopefully Rhea saved some of that fresh bread.

Whenever we do end up running back to Zelkor's Ferry for supplies we should bring Eochaid so he can take a look at the subterrene. He can borrow Nin's (blood and gore flecked) scarf to cover his face.
>>
No. 860230 ID: 094652

rolled 5, 1, 3 = 9

>>860147
"[large]WHAT[/large]."

Before Tall Jack Rat or Jalkaren can say anything, Azure demands that Nistamatsin bury the @#$%ing deck in the @#$%ing ground. Literally. Anyone else is free to dig up that cursed deathtrap of their own free will, but only after they've spoken to Tall Jack Rat and Jalkaren to confirm they are not under the influence of peer pressure.

Azure shames Nistamatsin. Didn't he say he wanted to prove he held himself to a higher virtue than Jalkaren? How does tempting people into a mathematically plausible risk of permanent death sound virtuous?!

Roll is to attempt to empathize with Jack and Jalkaren's agitation at Nistamatsin to convince both to stay aligned with the party in general, even if they have lost respect with Nistamatsin.
>>
No. 860289 ID: d36af7

>>860147
>as much cheap fresh food as we can from any nearby farmers, since we're such a short walk from town.
Zelkor's Ferry is more of a waystation than a town. There's some gardening and poultry and such, but they're a net importer of food, particularly when the inn is operating at capacity, so it's not cheap there.

Nearest actual farms are at least half a day's march further south, and they've been laying fallow since Rook's Vineyard was abandoned. Nearest active farms, where you could buy produce in bulk direct from the farmer, are inside Passholdt's territory. At that point you're talking about at least a two or three day round trip, involving wagons, and gate tolls, and the oxen need to eat too, and... pretty soon it's not cheap anymore, not unless you can arrange some magical shortcut.
>We can transport it all quickly and effortlessly if we get the cherub on our side.
>rolled 6, 1, 6 = 13
Nistamatsin can't imagine anything that could possibly go wrong with putting a civilization-loathing spirit of cruelty and disease in charge of delivering all the camp's raw food.

>It was a good draw overall, too bad about that one fatal card though.
Jalkaren asks Nin to describe the specific cards drawn, with particular emphasis on those after the fatal one. Once sufficient detail has been provided ("Where was the central figure looking? What note was being played on that harp in the background? How many lights were depicted, and in which colors?") she gives a small sigh of relief and announces that this confirms the 'satisfactory afterlife' hypothesis.
>Would this anti-divination ritual work in a tent, or is it just for pillow forts?
Needs more of a surrounding frame than typical tents provide, but a yurt would probably work.

However, before taking up long-term residence in a civilized structure, the orc hunt-brotherhood feels morally obligated to marry either the owner, or one of her daughters or other female subordinates. This involves a three-year commitment to continued hospitality. medical care, and strategic guidance from the wife in exchange for defense, labor, and sexual services (at the wife's discretion) from the five of them, and a dowry (which might more accurately be described as a security deposit, since it's nominally meant to be returned at the end if all goes well) worth 60 gold paid by them to the owner. Jalkaren is willing and able to officiate such a ceremony, but not to be the wife or accept such a payment, while Nin is ineligible on account of previous commitment to the ancient flame-spear, and also due to not being a female orc - although frankly that's a more flexible requirement.

>What kind of information can we get from the kobolds?
Drusilla can bring at least fifty wolves all to one place and have them working effectively together, so presumably she's got some sort of C3I magic which works better than instinctive pack tactics. The kobolds never met her in person, and aren't eager to. Those young adventurers met her only once, while chasing after a black beat they'd previously wounded in hopes of finishing it off. Drusilla intervened to save the bear, asked them why they were attacking, and they said for the money, which she didn't seem to like, but she also didn't kill them on the spot so it probably wasn't the worst possible answer either. Instead she cast a spell that turned them into clouds, and told them to go clear out a nest of giant spiders that'd... overstepped? Overshot? Something like that. In cloud-form, they flew maybe fifty or a hundred miles south, then regained solidity and control, fought the spiders, and worked their way back by making friends with some talking man-wise wolves in exchange for fish, riding a raft down the Wild Edge river, and walking north again along the Old Coast Road.

>>860134
>How are Nerys' comrades taking it?
>rolled 6, 1, 6 = 13
They say a few respectful words, but seem to be mostly numb. Not the first buddy they've lost to some random mishap, nor likely to be the last. Quick and painless, inches away from some big payoff? Hell, that's better than most bandits get. If the angel's right about him scoring some sorta awesome ghost-castle, that's better than most bandits even bother to dream about.
>Rhea's probably not the best reference for setting up surface-shelters or defensive fortifications.
She's got some idea how to arrange a camp in a small part of a larger cavern (from talking with the trolls, if nothing else), and account for the possibility of water dripping from the ceiling or a river temporarily overflowing it's banks, but problems of wind and sunlight are less familiar, and all this lumber sitting around is giving her some 'streets paved with gold' cognitive dissonance about availability and value of potential building materials, particularly since even the locals can't seem to decide whether wood is free for the taking, or guarded by vengeful horrors.

I'm also, as usual, hoping somebody draws an actual map of the camp's layout.
>>
No. 860304 ID: 094652
File 151659271941.png - (13.65KB , 700x700 , Trench Hill.png )
860304

>>860289
Azure suggests they just flatten the top of the hill with excavation and camp out there. Over time, they can excavate the hill to make a base of operations, perhaps even reinforce it for permanent housing.
>>
No. 860338 ID: b08d3b

rolled 2, 3, 6 = 11

>Nistamatsin can't imagine anything that could possibly go wrong with putting a civilization-loathing spirit of cruelty and disease in charge of delivering all the camp's raw food.
Well, we've already put a civilization-loathing spirit of fear and treachery in charge of everything else.

>orcs want to marry
>also due to not being a female orc - although frankly that's a more flexible requirement.
Nin asks if the cherub would make an acceptable wife.

>turned into clouds
>chasing a bear
Looks like Drusilla's not going to be too happy about us doing any hunting either. Probably not much hope for working things out peacefully with the druid, but a straight fight might not go in our favor either. Especially if she was able to take out so many men in that first attack. We do have an assassin, supposedly, but I was planning on eating them. This is a dilemma.

>a yurt would probably work.
How many men could stay in a 15ft yurt? We should have more than enough to afford a few of them if we dig out of the bandits' funds. (We really ought to put dollar to gold conversions somewhere on the wiki.)

>bury the deck
As funny as it would be for some random fool or child to dig it up later, Nin says he'd rather hold onto the deck.

>Hell, that's better than most bandits get.
Anybody else is welcome to draw from it though.

>draw a map
Yeah, I figured we'd hammer out some details first though. Also I don't have access to my computer currently, so it'll have to wait til at least tomorrow.
>>
No. 860374 ID: d36af7

>>860338
>Nin asks if the cherub would make an acceptable wife.
Not even slightly. Apart from how disgusting it is, and lacking in relevant positive qualities, it still hasn't got a face, and thus would be unable to participate in the initial ceremony.
>Looks like Drusilla's not going to be too happy about us doing any hunting either.
Maybe... but she sent the kids off to do more hunting, and seemed to consider the matter honorably settled after that.
>How many men could stay in a 15ft yurt?
Between nine and fourteen, assuming an efficient packing arrangement can be worked out, with the entire floor available for sleeping, and 12.5 to 20 square feet per person. Probably at least eight even with some floor space set aside for storage, and a small fire in the middle.

Pog takes up three or four times as much space as an average adult human, Azure or Rhea about half, Tellus Matrem or any of the seven kobolds about a third (partly because they're more inclined to cuddling up and piling on top of each other). However, bunking Azure and Rhea next to each other would be an open invitation to incendiary catastrophe.
>>
No. 860387 ID: 094652

>>860374
Azure asks if there's any way to contact Drusilla and negotiate about this. Specifically, can they pluck a few fruits and pine cones if they agree to plant some seeds elsewhere? There might be some overpopulation or rotted trees here and there, having Drusilla explain what to target and why would net a tiny profit in building assets.

Azure's planning on practicing her bedside manners with Valeno, who might need a dose of Remove Fear if she wakes up screaming and pulls more needles out of her ass or some other place they haven't looked.
>>
No. 860429 ID: 3d2d5f

rolled 5, 2, 2 = 9

>>860289
>before taking up long-term residence in a civilized structure, the orc hunt-brotherhood feels morally obligated to marry either the owner, or one of her daughters or other female subordinates.
Does a tent count as a civilized structure if it gets taken down all the time? ...did the hospital not count, or now that they stayed there, do we need to find the lost heir of the facility for them to marry?

Either way, Rhea's excited at the prospect of getting to bake a big wedding cake in the future.

>food logistics stuff
An important question is how long the food we have now will last. (Rhea could prepare the next day's spells with the priority of stretching it was far as possible, but even that only goes so far).
>>
No. 860435 ID: af6e04

rolled 1, 4, 6 = 11

>do we need to find the lost heir of the facility for them to marry?
...the cherub could probably claim some ownership over the hospital.

What happens if Nin tries to put somebody else's face on the cherub? (this is a basic experiment I've wanted to try from the beginning but never had the reason) He'll try using Nerys' face.

>but she sent the kids off to do more hunting, and seemed to consider the matter honorably settled after that.
We can't assume or surmise her logic. She seems completely uninterested in explaining it to anyone. She's willing to utilize torture, which requires a certain kind of empathy not seen in most wild animals. We have two demons and two creatures heavily associated with fire in our party. The only option I'm seeing in this moment is to plan on destroying Drusilla before she destroys us.

Maybe we could ask Jalkaren to try to make contact with her remotely, but I'm not sending anybody to speak with her in person. If someone here wants to commit suicide they can just draw from the deck of many things.

>having Drusilla explain what to target and why would net a tiny profit in building assets.
Likewise, nobody is going to try to ask the murderous druid for tips on netting profits.

>partly because they're more inclined to cuddling up and piling on top of each other
Nin finds this much more adorable than he would ever admit. Are the kobolds planning on sticking with the group or just staying for a night?

Four 15' yurts should be enough room for all the bandits and the party. That's twelve gold if I'm not mistaken, which we should be able to afford. I guess the main issue is getting them out here. 2000 lbs is a lot of weight even for a relatively short distance.
>>
No. 860444 ID: 3d2d5f

>>860429
Oh, and does their brotherhood allow them to accept hospitality as guests in civilized structures before they're married?

>>860435
Rhea takes offense at the characterization that fire means the only solution is killing the druid. Killing a farmer just because she won't let you gorge yourself means soon there won't be fuel/food for anyone. (Even if gosh it sure looks like there's a lot of tasty wood up here).
>>
No. 860496 ID: d36af7

>>860429
>Does a tent count as a civilized structure if it gets taken down all the time?
A tent counts if it's too big for them to carry their own share of it on their backs alongside the rest of their kit.
>...did the hospital not count,
Any cave that's haunted severely enough to have random skeletons showing up and trying to murder you isn't exactly a civilized dwelling, no. They had some other... awkward compromises worked out, as well.

Rhea herself would be nearly ideal as a junior orcish matriarch, apart from the species issue.
>>860435
>What happens if Nin tries to put [Nerys's] face on the cherub?
No supernatural effect; tbe two halves flop back off. Getting the cherub to hold still for such experiments isn't easy.

>She's willing to utilize torture,
Based on the gaps in Tall Jack Rat's account, it's possible those walking shrubs were just restraining Mikhail rather than actively trying to tear him apart, and the wolves might've been eating his mineral-rich organs without bothering to kill him all the way first. That happens sometimes IRL, when wolves corner a moose or caribou or whatnot. There's no confirmed account of Drusilla applying calculated pain to extract information or otherwise directly modify someone's behavior.
>plan on destroying Drusilla before she destroys us.
Jalkaren's the only ally you have who could even pose a credible threat to her in a stand-up fight at this point, and there's no obvious way to arrange an asymmetric confrontation without more and better intel. Just to put the power levels in perspective, here, a handy LotR comparison: while you're poking around in the top floor of Moria, dealing with rats and kobolds and orcs and bandits a handful at a time, Drusilla could be doing this sort of thing http://www.threepanelsoul.com/comic/on-raids to Sauron's tower.

>2000 lbs is a lot of weight even for a relatively short distance.
Split it up into six wheelbarrow-loads.
>>
No. 860521 ID: d36af7

>>860444
>does their brotherhood allow them to accept hospitality as guests in civilized structures before they're married?
As guests, fighting only in desperate defense of the core household, and moving on after a week or two (unless extraordinary circumstances make that impossible), sure. Somebody's talk of a "holy quest" gave them the impression this would be a more serious and longer-lasting sort of arrangement than that.
>>
No. 860577 ID: af6e04

rolled 5, 3, 3 = 11

>Rhea takes offense at the characterization that fire means the only solution is killing the druid.
By that I meant the druid may be less likely to show you or I leeway because of what we are.

>Killing a farmer just because she won't let you gorge yourself means soon there won't be fuel/food for anyone.
Nin points out that this is a very poor comparison. He's never met a farmer who turned young mortals into clouds.

Our one lead wasn't able to tell us much aside from the fact that killing bears is one way to invoke Drusilla's wrath. We need to gather more information. We can try to make use of whatever divination Jalkaren is willing to provide for the purpose, and ask if there are any associated costs up front. Isaiah may be able to figure out the common paths she and her wolves take and get a general layout of where we might find her. Tethru might be able to tell us something of value too.

We could do some physical scouting. Nin can take a wild animal's face and is probably in the best position to devise a way to fool any of Drusilla's divinations. Azure and Kent can do aerial searches.

>Jalkaren's the only ally you have who could even pose a credible threat to her in a stand-up fight at this point
But if everyone's stuck on the diplomatic solution, Nin can go try to speak to the druid alone. He'll be the most likely to survive if she decides to kill him thanks to the protections granted by the deck of many things.

Anyway, I think we've decided on our shelter. Unless there's anything else that needs done here we should probably take our wounded and head back to town. I'm guessing they don't have a yurt shop in Zelkor's Ferry, so how long will it probably be before we return with shelter?
>>
No. 860814 ID: d36af7

rolled 2, 75 = 77

>>860577
>We can try to make use of whatever divination Jalkaren is willing to provide for the purpose,
The simplest option might be a direct http://www.d20pfsrd.com/magic/all-spells/s/sending to announce whatever potential disruption of her interests you have planned, requesting permission and/or advice. What would you say, specifically? Bearing in mind that each casting takes ten minutes and is limited to 25 words or less, with a similar-sized reply.
>and ask if there are any associated costs up front.
No charge, not for such an eminently reasonable precaution against overall mission failure.
>Isaiah may be able to figure out the common paths she and her wolves take
He's more about rivers and proper paved roads. Scrying an informal single-use track in the dirt with his power is like trying to catch a falling cigarette by grabbing onto the trail of smoke.
>and get a general layout of where we might find her.
Somewhere in the Forest of Hope, which is a few thousand square miles.
>I'm guessing they don't have a yurt shop in Zelkor's Ferry,
A dedicated shop whose primary business is Ikea-style yurt kits? No. They do have portable accordion-fold wooden fencing, sturdy felt cloth in bulk, and all the other necessary components available for purchase individually, though.
>so how long will it probably be before we return with shelter?
Six to eight hours, so, right around sundown. Whoever stays behind should start on whatever earthworks you're planning to reinforce the perimeter with while the shopping team is away, and I'll roll random encounters for them. Lessee, daytime, but more than three miles off the main merchant road so there aren't regular patrols... that'll be roughly one roll per four hours, extra rolls only if you do something that'd be visible or audible from more than a mile away. Such as, say, lighting a big fire, or building a tower, or waving stuff around on a bare hilltop taller than surrounding trees.

Two rolls, double zero means the druid shows up before you've regrouped, anything with a single zero is potentially interesting or dangerous but not nearly as much so.
>>
No. 860824 ID: d36af7

>>860814
>accordion-fold
That's the wrong term. Should be latticework. Point is, it expands into a grid or collapses into a slightly crooked-looking bundle with pivoting fasteners at the overlapping joints.
>rolled 02
Somebody's peeking at the camp from the nearest available underbrush, trying to be sneaky without much success. Might be a few more further back. Who stayed behind to supervise the bandits, and how do they respond?
>>
No. 861037 ID: af6e04

rolled 2, 4, 5 = 11

>announce whatever potential disruption of her interests you have planned, requesting permission and/or advice.
We can't really guess what interests there are to disrupt. The current plan is to just sit on this hill, not chopping down any trees or killing anything and bringing all our food from elsewhere. Maybe something like 'Greetings. We are on divine mission and planning no hunting or deforestation. Would like peaceful coexistence. How may this be achieved?'

>Forest of Hope
Containing the Mouth of Doom

>Who stayed behind to supervise the bandits, and how do they respond?
I guess Nin would have stayed behind. He'll go greet the intruder while wearing the centipede face.
>>
No. 861135 ID: 094652

>>861037
Azure's the star diplomat, she was tending to Valeno but she can flutter over to Nistamatsin if called. For now, she hasn't heard any screaming so she doesn't know about this situation.
>>
No. 861182 ID: b45626

rolled 4, 1, 5 = 10

>>859570
With all the horrible demons wondering about, Valeno figures this is their end. Although, whoever patched up their leg must be either wanting to save them for cooking later, or just wanting to watch Valeno suffer. The tiny abomination looks to be either the least threatening or the boss, Valeno cannot figure which.

Does Valeno understand that they might be hallucinating? Can they figure out that what they are infected with is REALLY bad news? Is it the plague? Valeno would have made it a priority to keep a hold of all those notes and information.

If Valeno determines it to be the plague, regardless if it truly is, "Please, have mercy...... I think I am really sick.....I won't be delicious if I have the plague..."

Who has been carrying them? And did anyone get Valeno's blood on them? They might also be in for a rough time in the next hour or so. As for all the diplomatic/potential backstabbing of this supposed Great Druid, none of it makes any sense to Valeno. (OOC: And to be honest, not me either, but i gather it's better that way.) Also, not having a foot makes Valeno a very poor worker at the moment.

Valeno wiggles their left hand, how's it feel?
>>
No. 861206 ID: 094652

rolled 4, 4, 3 = 11

>>861182
Azure tries to identify what Valeno is suffering from, and calmly explains she is trying to help. If Valeno starts thrashing, that would be a good time to cast Remove Fear in the form of song - it seems to Azure that Valeno can still hear sounds, if slightly muffled.
>>
No. 861279 ID: d36af7

rolled 2, 2 = 4

>>861182
>self-diagnosis
>rolled 4, 1, 5 = 10
>>836278
>Symptoms of The Pestilence: dizziness, mild fever, jaundice, coughing, delusions of grandeur, spontaneous (painless and bloodless) detachment of the left hand at the wrist, vivid visual and tactile hallucinations of a crab-like claw enclosing or replacing the patient's own left hand, or the right hand of other carriers (helpful for early detection), itchy pustules, necrosis of the lungs and/or bone marrow, and in most cases death within hours.

Valeno definitely has fever and hallucinations, and might be dizzy and/or jaundiced (hard to confidently assess the color of your own skin under unfamiliar lighting, much less when visual perception is off-spec), but there's been no coughing, no pustules, "I'm crippled and they're going to eat me" isn't much of a delusion of grandeur, and hallucinations don't seem to match the highly detailed and specific diagnostic description.
>Valeno wiggles their left hand, how's it feel?
Bruised, consistent with an awkward landing on a greasy stone floor, but still firmly attached. Not at all like a crab claw.
>>861206
>rolled 4, 4, 3 = 11
While the angel is distracted by contacting some druid, and thus unable to object to the lack of anaesthesia, Pog pins Valeno down to control the thrashing and screaming while Azure performs a quick exploratory surgery into the exposed end of Valeno's shinbone and thereby thoroughly confirms the lack of bone marrow necrosis. Whatever this snake-ninja caught, it's certainly not The Pestilence (as described in those papers they were carrying), but it is some sort of supernatural disease.

Next sensible diagnostic step would use petri dishes loaded with mana-enriched agar gel to culture a sample from the wound and another from the cherub which inflicted it, to see if the growth patterns match. Isolated specimens are also useful for testing treatment options, since if you guess wrong and the intervention makes things worse, at least you haven't messed up the actual patient's bloodstream.

To proceed with that properly, though, Azure will need some clean glassware, and the growth medium (dubious-quality versions could be purchased from Ulman Dark, or either of the two logos-mobile spirits available could be sent off to buy stuff from a reputable alchemist's guild in some distant city; there are distinct costs and potential complications associate with each of those three options), and the cherub will need to have a mouth the inside of which can be scraped for that reference sample.

>>861037
>'Greetings. We are on divine mission and planning no hunting or deforestation. Would like peaceful coexistence. How may this be achieved?'
Lt.Cmdr. Jalkaren receives only a nonverbal mental image in response: a vast oroboros with alternately pastoral and apocalyptic scenes laid out across it's countless scales. Autumn leaves burning, ash mixed with snow in winter, new sprouts and hungry birds in spring, and so on. Taken as a whole, it also gives the impression of an exasperated eye-roll. Might be parsed as "don't care, leave me alone" but with some hard-to-interpret subtext about cycles and balance.
>He'll go greet the intruder while wearing the centipede face.
[number I just rolled] humans, skittish like feral animals, clad in rags, mostly armed with crude clubs and/or slings. One of them has a kitchen knife with the tip broken off, another has a rusty woodcutter's axe. They ask if you've got any food to spare.
>>
No. 861652 ID: af6e04

rolled 1, 4, 3 = 8

>and the cherub will need to have a mouth
Knowledge check on possible solutions to the cherub's lack of face?

>subtext about cycles and balance.
I don't know. What does Jalkaren make of it? I wasn't expecting to get much out of the druid anyway.

>They ask if you've got any food to spare.
"Of course! You will have to leave your weapons behind if you wish to join us for dinner. Pay no mind to the screaming." Assuming they follow and don't try to mug me or something I'll ask who they are and where they came from.

>Who has been carrying [Valeno]?
A gaunt and hideous creature with a bloodstained tunic that introduced itself as Nistamatsin. Seemed way too enthusiastic about helping and explained on the way out that Valeno would soon have their foot back good as new.

>And did anyone get Valeno's blood on them?
I imagine Nin would have snuck a taste if he got the chance. Do I feel sick?
>>
No. 861683 ID: d36af7

>>861652
>Knowledge check on possible solutions to the cherub's lack of face?
>rolled 1, 4, 3 = 8
Could try whatever high-circle healing magic can regrow amputated limbs, or dramatically reaffirm the cherub's identity and purpose somehow (since it's a spirit, the body is a plaything of the mind), or if any sort of face is adequate - that is, if it doesn't really need to be restored to original spec - Azure or somebody could simply carve it the way you'd put a face on a pumpkin.

>What does Jalkaren make of it?
'Don't break anything badly enough that it won't grow back,' maybe. Lumber but no clear-cutting, hunting but no extermination, and so on. That's a common enough druidic attitude.

>"You will have to leave your weapons behind if you wish to join us for dinner. Pay no mind to the screaming."
"Is this... man, I don't wanna seem ungrateful, mister centipede, but there's no polite way to say it. You're making this sound like one of those 'join us as dinner' ambush deals. It's not, right? Please tell me it's not."

>Do I feel sick?
No. Valeno Nahesa's blood isn't the very best thing Nistamatsin has ever tasted, but does rate somewhere among the top ten of a fairly long and luxurious life. That one tiny sip also seems to have cleared up the itchy lingering effects of contaminated brass balm.
>>
No. 861729 ID: 3d2d5f

rolled 2, 1, 2 = 5

>You're making this sound like one of those 'join us as dinner' ambush deals. It's not, right? Please tell me it's not.
Rhea will chime in at this point and insist hospitality is sacred and that guests are not for eating.
>>
No. 861809 ID: af6e04

>dramatically reaffirm the cherub's identity and purpose somehow
I can't think of a way to do this without committing some sort of atrocity. What about a dramatic change in identity and purpose? This is why I wanted the orcs to marry it.

>Azure or somebody could simply carve it the way you'd put a face on a pumpkin.
Well if it's that simple then sure. It'll work for now, at least.

>somewhere among the top ten of a fairly long and luxurious life
Nin has to wonder what this creature did to become so tasty to him.

>Rhea will chime in at this point and insist hospitality is sacred and that guests are not for eating.
The magical centipede laughs and informs Rhea that she's no fun.

So if Nin, Azure, Pog, and Rhea all stayed behind that only leaves Geoffrey, Kent, Isaiah, and the bandit Eochaid(?) to pick up supplies. Might have been a good idea to send Pog to help carry the yurts, but oh well.
>>
No. 861921 ID: d36af7

>>861729
>rolled 2, 1, 2 = 5
Crit success. All four of them are adequately reassured, and eagerly chow down on roast-centipede-and-tomato sandwiches before signing on with Team Magic Sword as support staff.

>>861809
>if Nin, Azure, Pog, and Rhea all stayed behind
Azure and Pog might have only stayed on the hilltop with the Mouth long enough to inflict further torment medical care on Valeno, while the campsite was being planned out and Jalkaren was attempting to contact the druid. The pathetic starving outlaws showed up around lunchtime, and they're not notorious bandits with significant bounties on their heads, so they could safely accompany the supply run. All four of them together, plus Niknak's crew, can haul about as much as Pog can by himself.
>>
No. 861950 ID: 094652

>>861921
Well actually, if they're going out for materials, Azure thinks this is as good a time as any to take a break. She's going to need some petri dishes (beer glasses should be an easy replacement), and some soap or other disinfectant, and pre-purchase equipment with a high weight:cost ratio so they don't need to "rely" on Jalkaren again, among other things. Pog can carry heavy objects, Azure can get a discount for the party. Let the four new staff members take care of Valeno.
>>
No. 861959 ID: d36af7

>>861950
>Let the four new staff members
A cheesemaker's apprentice who pulled a knife (the very knife he's carrying) in a bar fight and fled before the police arrived, a lumberjack who got caught sleeping with his boss's wife, and a pair of gravediggers who fenced some of the stuff they were supposed to be burying.
>take care of Valeno
None of them have any medical training at all.
>>
No. 862056 ID: af6e04

>>861959
Nin can take care of Valeno if everybody else wants to go back to town.
>>
No. 863304 ID: d36af7

Once you've got the yurts set up, who's sleeping where?

>>860304
I can't figure out what this map is supposed to represent, exactly. All those little geometric shapes need to be labeled to clarify what they represent, any multi-level design should include a side view to show relative heights and how it all fits together, and most of all, there needs to be a scale with actual units of measurement.

>>861809
>the bandit Eochaid
As an infamous outlaw, he (like the rest of Tall Jack Rat's gang) shouldn't visit any civilized settlement that shares formal extradition or routine commercial traffic with Passholdt without either a good disguise and cover story, overwhelming force, or some other exit strategy. Even apart from professional bounty hunters, 25 gold per head is enough for a great big angry mob to all buy themselves celebratory ice cream, so getting recognized might mean having to fight through an entire town's able-bodied population.

Eochaid personally is a devout worshipper of Tsathoggua. He's not ordained as a priest; his unschooled faith is simply so strong that it qualifies him as a paragon, a favored soul, the equivalent of a saint.

I say "equivalent" because Tsathoggua does not admire and reward what most would consider virtuous behavior. Indeed, the central pillar of Eochaid's beliefs is that he must avoid hard work of any sort, passing off to others any and all obligations he finds strenuous or boring, or neglecting such duties outright, by whatever means necessary, right up to the point where the only alternative is immediate mortal danger. So, he's definitely not going to help with hauling heavy stuff, setting up the tents, etc.

The good news is, praying for a quick fix never counts as hard work, and his prayers are often answered by minor miracles - such as that miniature Formless Spawn, which will work tirelessly (within the limits of it's ability) to set up, maintain, and defend the camp, at least until he prays for something else.
>>
No. 863359 ID: af6e04

rolled 2, 1, 1 = 4

A little rough, but here. Simple and symmetrical. I don't think any excavation is required, least not yet.

>who's sleeping where?
I assume all the PCs will want to sleep in the same yurt. Or maybe not, as Nin mentions he gets clingy in his sleep. Either way I'll designate the northern yurt ("A") as ours and the rest are for the bandits.

>the central pillar of Eochaid's beliefs is that he must avoid hard work of any sort, passing off to others any and all obligations he finds strenuous or boring, or neglecting such duties outright, by whatever means necessary, right up to the point where the only alternative is immediate mortal danger.
It sounds like he'd actually be a terrible subterrene crewman in that case. We'll just let him stay back at the camp.
>>
No. 863457 ID: af6e04
File 151737196217.png - (6.20KB , 400x400 , camp1.png )
863457

>>863359
Oh haha, I didn't actually post the map
>>
No. 863650 ID: 3abd97

Honestly this whole Tsathoggua / Tittivila thing sounds like a surface water dispute to Rhea. It's all rather out of her depth!

>who's sleeping where?
If the Yurts have windows, Rhea wants to sleep in the eastmost one. If they only have doors, the one facing east.

Did we get smaller tents for the orc brotherhood? We can't wait for a three-year courtship if they want somewhere to sleep tonight. Yes, I intentionally had her misunderstand that. Language barriers, woo.
>>
No. 863739 ID: af6e04

Nin says that Rhea shouldn't feel at all obligated to marry those orcs. They do seem handsome though.
>>
No. 863756 ID: d36af7

>>863650
>>863359
>rolled 2, 1, 1 = 4
Nin spends all night obsessively rearranging minor bits of camping equipment, scratching lines and symbols in the dirt, checking and re-checking it all with surveyor's gear, and politely threatening to disembowel anyone who scuffs resultant warding diagrams in the course of their bleary midnight search for the latrine.

Come the morning, Rhea wakes up with sunlight on her face, and walks outside in a warm and pleasant daze to see Lt.Cmdr Jalkaren kneeling penitently in front of Nin.

The angel is saying "...had no idea you held such deep concern for these people. The only discernible flaws reflect poverty, or ignorance, rather than carelessness. I shall create one thousand square feet of 3" thick stone walls atop this hill each day, at your direction, until the defenses are satisfactory or some more urgent matter requires my resources of the fifth circle, and in the latter case shall resume once whatever crisis is resolved. No charge."

Looking around, Rhea observes that the camp really does seem to have a very tidy and sensible layout, and also that she herself has forgotten to put clothes on. Wrapped in clean golden light, it doesn't quite occur to her to be embarrassed until that exiled cheesemaker's apprentice shocks her out of this reverie by awkwardly explaining that water might start falling from the 'sky' at any moment.
>>
No. 863760 ID: 094652

It's not very apparent, but when Azure realized (eventually) that Jalkaren praised Nistamatsin of all people with "~a week's worth of conjure stone perimeter wall", her tail was wagging.

Most of the tail momentum comes from her butt.
>>
No. 863824 ID: 3abd97

>Lt.Cmdr Jalkaren kneeling penitently in front of Nin
Aw. Rhea knew those two would get along!

>she herself has forgotten to put clothes on. [...] water might start falling from the 'sky' at any moment.
Um. Oh. Well, it'll probably be okay.

Water falling down all over sounds like a bad thing, thank you for the warning.

Rhea goes back inside and gets dressed.

So what's the plan for the day?

>>863760
I believe the offer is open ended, not for a week.
>>
No. 863847 ID: d36af7

>So what's the plan for the day?
The same thing we do every day, Pinky: try to take over the worldyet-unmapped parts of the dungeon.
>>
No. 863852 ID: af6e04

rolled 5, 6, 6 = 17

>>863756
>Lt.Cmdr Jalkaren kneeling penitently in front of Nin.
>create one thousand square feet of 3" thick stone walls atop this hill each day, at your direction, until the defenses are satisfactory
"That would have been very useful [i]before[i] we spent a night out in the wilderness, exposed and with wounded." Though the petulance in Nin's voice makes it clear he's just trying to keep up his defiant attitude toward the angel rather than actually being upset. He tells Jalkaren to rise and do his bidding. (Will have to get together with Azure on this, she has the architectural skills)

>The same thing we do every day, Pinky: try to take over the worldyet-unmapped parts of the dungeon.
And a wonderful routine it is! Who's up for dungeon delving today?

Did Jalkaren fix Valeno's foot?
>>
No. 863856 ID: 094652

>>863852
... Aaand Azure's tail stopped wagging. She just halted her butt-wiggling giggling-schoolgirl pose and has a grumpy glare on her face. You know that feeling you get when one of your products gets a sharp increase in value, only to drop back down by the time you're ready to sell it to the market? This is that feeling.
>>
No. 864116 ID: d36af7

>>863852
Jalkaren interprets Nin's perfunctory defiance as an attempt at tsundere flirting, and shudders in disgust before proceeding with the wall construction.
>out in the wilderness, exposed and with wounded
Between the crit-success warding diagram and angelic support, you've got a 40' radius circle (centered on the fire, extending about 10' beyond the outermost walls of the yurts) which is now resistant to scrying or extradimensional intrusion, and counts as an entirely separate region from the Forest of Hope for random encounter purposes. Anyone with no connection to Team Magic Sword or hostile intentions toward those inside would meet roughly as much difficulty in attempting to enter that circle as hiking 10-15 miles uphill through knee-deep snow, though exiting is still as easy as ever.

>Did Jalkaren fix Valeno's foot?
Yes, once the wards were up and Nistamatsin was outside them for a moment. The regeneration spell takes about ten minutes, during which time Valeno's demon-attracting smell is greatly intensified.
>>
No. 864254 ID: d36af7

>Who's up for dungeon delving today?
More so than 'who,' you should be thinking about 'where,' identifying routes and strategies for striking deeper into the complex with fewer costs or complications. http://thealexandrian.net/wordpress/1900/roleplaying-games/treasure-maps-the-unknown-goals-in-the-megadungeon
>>
No. 864342 ID: 3abd97

>>863847
>Pinky
Chromatically accurate!

>>864254
Yeah this is what I was asking. We should set a goal for what we're trying to do today.

Yesterday's job was to meet with / deal with the bandits, which then turned into a rescue mission and meting with the green fire yesterday.

Today we could... secure or do something with the bandit's base of operation inside the dungeon? Try to clear out some pockets of undead? Investigate or try to get into some of rooms that resisted mapping? Try and find a way down to a deeper level? Or something I haven't thought of.
>>
No. 864354 ID: af6e04

rolled 4, 4, 2 = 10

>tsundere flirting
Well, maybe it was...

>>864254
I see what you're saying here, but the goal literally is 'clear the dungeon'. We're going to have to exterminate or pacify every single giant centipede, skeleton, and demon in this hospital before it's safe enough to fulfill its original purpose, which does encourage a room-by-room approach.

Though it may be more efficient to cut to the root of the problem. On that front, we need more information. I can see two leads - the cherub and Valeno. We need to get the cherub's face situation sorted out so we can figure out what demon it's working for. If Valeno tells us anything about their experiences down in the dungeon then it's probably a good idea to retrace their steps and try to make contact with those elvenoids they encountered and examine those containment rooms.

Also, we should try to work on getting the subterrene relocated to our current base of operations so we can at least work on getting it up and running during down time. I feel a little nervous about leaving something so useful just sitting back at Zelkor's Ferry. Can Jalkaren do anything for us on that front?
>>
No. 864449 ID: 094652

rolled 6, 5, 4 = 15

>>864354
And THIS time, Azure's going to help Nistamatsin converse with Jalkaren. She requests and pores over Jalkaren's specifics on costs, benefits, options, and anything remotely related to the Subterrene. Hopefully she can learn something instead of getting schooled with scams.

I dunno which of Azure's skills she uses for the skill checks but whatever is highest right now.
>>
No. 864813 ID: d36af7

>the subterrene
Less than half a day's walk between the camp and the inn. If you want to keep the subterrene secure while nobody's using it, simplest option is to have Pog pile some rocks and/or the statue of Nistamatsin on top of the hatch. With 25 gold worth of ritual materials and mechanical parts, Nin could fit the hatch (or any door) with a magical biometric lock.

If you want it moved, you could dig it up and get a team of laborers together to haul it overland like a building-block for some vast monument. Or, somebody could sit down in the pilot's chair and try to steer it around under it's own power.

>the cherub
At some point during the supply run and camp setup, the faceless plague cherub seems to have departed. Lots of protests of "How should I know? I thought you were watching it."

>retracing Valeno's steps
Following the stairs down would be simple enough, but beyond that there are several troublesome gaps involving being chased through total darkness, and teleportation devices which were never confirmed to function symmetrically.
>>
No. 864857 ID: af6e04

rolled 5, 4, 4 = 13

>If you want to keep the subterrene secure while nobody's using it
Probably a good precaution, but the main issue is that I don't want to put a halt to dungeon delving in order to stay behind and figure out the subterrene. Could maybe put a few people (specifically Helen and the NPCified PCs?) in charge of learning how to pilot it while everyone else stays here in camp to do the adventuring.

>try to steer it around under it's own power.
Might finally give this a try.

>Lots of protests of "How should I know? I thought you were watching it."
No reason to get defensive, Nin says that since he couldn't devise a way to prevent the cherub from just teleporting off, there was no reason to waste anybody's time by having them keep an eye on it.

>teleportation devices which were never confirmed to function symmetrically.
Ah, this is a possibility I have trouble even considering most of the time. Well it's our only remaining lead, but if we're going to be walking for hours underground with no exact knowledge of where we're going then we'll at least want to do some additional planning. A simpler goal might be in order.

>Investigate or try to get into some of rooms that resisted mapping?
Let's do this.
>>
No. 865011 ID: d36af7

>>864857
>Let's do this.
Look over the existing map, assign numbers or letters or something to points where a door or hallway continues into blankness, and start prioritizing among them.
>>
No. 865072 ID: 094652

rolled 3, 3, 2 = 8

Azure votes they start from the nearest unknown rooms and work their way outward. Start from B and go straight forward to an unknown room, map it out.

Azure also tries to locate the little bastard so she can continue her treatment plans for Valeno. A few castings of Detect Magic should help her map out potential locations for the imp, as well as potential threats throughout the dungeon. Hopefully she casts correctly...
>>
No. 865548 ID: d36af7

>>/questdis/120402
>How far is [Lake Laogai] from our new base of operations?
Adjacent hex, up there in the current discussion thread's first post. Once somebody builds a proper watchtower, possibly involving archon-conjured stone walls and/or 12-yard-long charm bracelet ladders, you'll be able to see it without leaving the base's wards. Can't see any obvious "wall of poison," though. Figuring that part out will require further investigation.
>>
No. 866906 ID: af6e04
File 151845751571.png - (429.25KB , 753x997 , numbered.png )
866906

>>865011
I say we take out all the dead ends first, one by one.

>build a watchtower
Well it's a new day. Any particular reason Jalkaren can't get started?

>Lake Laogai
If this is a priority there's no reason we can't split the group. Nin's reluctant to put the hospital on hold though, since Jalkaren's still holding the sword over his head.
>>
No. 866907 ID: af6e04

rolled 2, 6, 5 = 13

>>
No. 868877 ID: d36af7

>>866906
>Well it's a new day. Any particular reason Jalkaren can't get started?
Nope, all ready to go. How wide do you want this tower's base to be? How many windows and doors, located where? It's a lot easier to close those off later than open new ones.
>I say we take out all the dead ends first, one by one.
Which route are you taking to #1, and who's coming along with? In particular, who's on point, and how exactly are they interacting with that door?
>>
No. 868989 ID: 094652

>>868877
Since our party is now a crowd, we can split the team and approach #1 from E and F. Pog can breach the door if the others give him defensive buffs. Azure can cast resistance on the party as prep.
>>
No. 868998 ID: af6e04

rolled 4, 3, 1 = 8

>>868877
15ft wide, so it's about as big as the yurts, seems good. Doorways on the north and south sides. I see no reason to have windows on the ladder climb up, but a window on each side at the top of the tower for visibility.

>Which route are you taking to #1, and who's coming along with? In particular, who's on point, and how exactly are they interacting with that door?
>>868989
No reason not to split the crowd, I guess. Nin can lead one group (taking point) and Azure the other. I'm assuming everybody's coming along except Valeno, who is welcome to stay in our camp provided they don't cause any trouble.

Prodding the door with ten foot pole before opening it. Checking for pitfalls in particular.
>>
No. 869716 ID: d36af7

>big crowd
>no marching order specified
Two of the half-starved outlaws explore down the straight passage past door E (the wolf's head). One of them is bitten by a giant ant, and promptly incapacitated; the other screams in panic and attempts to flee, only to find that an iron portcullis has slammed down across the alcove in front of door E, cutting off their line of retreat.

>>868998
>Prodding the door with ten foot pole before opening it.
Pole sticks on contact, as if the tip were embedded in glue.

>no reason to have windows on the ladder climb up
Instead of a ladder, how about a double spiral staircase with periodic arrow slits?
>>
No. 869756 ID: 094652

rolled 5, 4, 5 = 14

>>869716
>half starved
Azure went shopping, she got a lot of rations! For Pog. But then everyone got a piece first! Why are they still hungry?!

Crap, they're taking... on... oh, right. Jalkaren. Worry less. Still, they should show appreciation for life if Jalkaren's going to premium-insure it.

Pog charges in to bash the ant's skull! Azure is patiently waiting for an opportunity to fire, using her turn to steady her aim. She's safely behind the other bandits.
>>
No. 869873 ID: 3abd97

>>869716
How giant an ant? And did the group get split up by the portcullis, or is today's exploration team all pretty much in the hall between door E and the door at 1 Nin just prodded?

>observation tower
Do we need someone manning that, or using it to study Lake Laogai? Not sure if we've established anyone as being particularly good at that kind of thing.

>>869756
One day of better food does not undo however long they've been operating on starvation conditions.

>Rhea's Spells for the day
Zeroth: Chef’s Assistant ( >>/questdis/118604 ), Detect Poison, Enhanced Diplomacy, Purify food and drink.
First: <Domain Spell>, Air Bubble, Burning Disarm.

Can ask Azure or Isaiah if we need Detect Magic or Mending.
>>
No. 869877 ID: af6e04

rolled 6, 4, 2 = 12

>no marching order specified
I like the encourage independent thought among my minions.

>Instead of a ladder, how about a double spiral staircase with periodic arrow slits?
This sounds good. Eight of them in rotational symmetry around the wall.

>Pole sticks on contact, as if the tip were embedded in glue.
Rolling a knowledge check on that.
>>
No. 872330 ID: d22dc0

rolled 4, 6, 5 = 15

>orc hunt-brotherhood feels morally obligated to marry

Kent offers to make it official with them, if the brotherhood is interested; they don't exactly count as and orcish woman, but if that's a flexible condition, Kent doesn't see any reason not to make this more convenient for everyone, and would be happy to have some extra hands to help out over the net few years.

A few moments after offering, they quickly come back and sign out a question:
"You don't have to talk for this ceremony, right?"

>Moving the subterren

Kent makes a movement that's similar to a cross between a bloodhound standing at attention and whatever the physical equivalent of an exclamation point is. They've been so worried about it sitting out there, all alone, no one to keep it company, er, that is to say, ensure it's secure.

>Portcullis
That's no good! Isaiah calls for pog to help while kent looks for a mechanism to unlock the door

Can Isaiah use ant haul to increase hi lifting capacity and thereby lift the portcullis? Not sure how the spell works.
>>
No. 873073 ID: d1248b

>>869756
>Pog charges in
>rolled 5, 4, 5 = 14
He stumbles over various allies. The ant sees him coming and flees before he reaches it.

>>869873
>How giant an ant?
http://www.d20pfsrd.com/bestiary/monster-listings/vermin/ant/ant-giant-soldier/
Big enough that Rhea (or Azure) could plausibly ride on it's back.
>And did the group get split up by the portcullis, or is today's exploration team all pretty much in the hall between door E and the door at 1 Nin just prodded?
They're all together, and still have a clear path to the exit through door A. New kid's just panicking because he doesn't know about that.

>>869877
>knowledge check on [the sticky door]
>rolled 6, 4, 2 = 12
The most common and versatile type of 'mimics' are actually descended from a group of elvenoids which were kidnapped by some sort of aether-weaving spiders and biologically modified, forced into symbiosis with some sort of artificial fungus which turned them into filter-feeders subsisting mainly on the ghosts of microorganisms, and kept as livestock for the spiders to feed on while they planned a war with another race, known as the Xill, also seeking to rule great swathes of the Green Breath. Spiders lost that war, or possibly were scattered by some unrelated natural disaster. The meat-slaves escaped, but couldn't reverse the modifications, and a few generations later they stabilized biologically and culturally into a mass of adhesive tentacles and chromatophores that can emulate many sorts of stone, wood, metal, sometimes even bedsheets. Won't pass close inspection due to the coarse texture, but usually before it comes to that point they've got you. Typical adult is 150 cubic feet, but some either grow much larger or learn to team up. They're still primarily spiritual filter-feeders, only eating meat for supplementary nutrients; elaborate ambushes are some sort of sex fantasy or serial-killer-like obsession for them, rather than a necessity of survival, so once that urge has been gratified it's often possible to negotiate. They stop being sticky about an hour after dying, or can do so voluntarily in two or three minutes.

This isn't one of those, or it'd be attacking by now. Probably just a normal wooden door covered in some sort of super-strong invisible glue.

>>872330
>Kent offers to make it official with them, if the brotherhood is interested; they don't exactly count as and orcish woman, but if that's a flexible condition,
>>rolled 4, 6, 5 = 15
"Orcish" is flexible, "woman" not so much. Does Kent know how to transmute raw plants into food and medicine, or excrete babies, or propitiate the gods, or do that ritual with the dolls and the candles and the maps that sometimes leads to victory in battle despite tactical disadvantage?
>>
No. 873079 ID: d22dc0

>>873073
>Does Kent know how to:

>transmute raw plants into food and medicine
I know a few useful plants and brews offhand, but my tutor didn't deign it relevant to my studies so poultices were only covered when necessary. If it's necessary for the arrangement, I could dedicate some time to the appropriate reading.

>excrete babies
Hmm, that's a bit trickier- not in the traditional sense, no. Perhaps Nin's archon friend could assist in that regard. I'm assuming you don't count autonomous creations as, babies, correct? (I don't remember if Jalkaren's skrying extends to signing, or if it's sound based, but this is all explicitly Kent signing to the orcs)

>propitiate the gods
Propitiate? Hold a moment-

Kent reaches down, rumages for a moment before pulling up a large, heavy book and leafing it through it, quickly scanning the pages before returning it to it's rightful place

Oh, well, on a case by case basis I think I could manage that. Depends on how reasonable they're being really.

>do that ritual with the dolls and the candles and the maps that sometimes leads to victory in battle despite tactical disadvantage
Hm. Not familiar with that one. I could certainly facilitate winning despite tactical disadvantages however, and perhaps with enough dedication I could even learn this particular ritual, if it's important for qualifying as a woman.

Certainly I wouldn't want to press such a relationship upon you, but it does sound somewhat appealing, and would help smooth the out the issue of sleeping arrangements. If there's a traditional timeline associated with being recognized as a woman, or a stage in the relationship where each of these events traditionally occurs, I may be able to dedicate a regular amount of time on a daily basis to ensure I can learn them all in time.
>>
No. 873082 ID: 094652

rolled 3, 6, 5 = 14

Pog defends the corridor the ant skittered to while Azure begins tending (mostly sedating) the bandit's wounds. She says she'll catch up once she's done stabilizing him.

Azure figures Jalkaren might find a way to indirectly tax the party for every single heal and resurrection she performs, so keeping the expedition alive and well is a priority. Normally she wouldn't care, but Jalkaren can set the interest rate for the debt to whatever she wants and Azure currently does not have enough on hand to pay up front.

Boy, Azure should have studied under another winged a long time ago, she's learning so much.

Pog has a little song in his head about stomping on ants. It consists of three words chosen at random.
>>
No. 873164 ID: 3abd97

rolled 5, 2, 4 = 11

>>873073
>Big enough that Rhea (or Azure) could plausibly ride on it's back.
Well that sounds fun! Too bad they don't seem friendly.

Hmm, I wonder if the giants ants were originally tamed and used for moving supplies and people around in the hospital. Probably a natural infestation though.

>Probably just a normal wooden door covered in some sort of super-strong invisible glue.
Maybe after Nin gets his spear free we should powder it with something so it isn't sticky anymore?

>>873082
>One of them is bitten by a giant ant
>Azure begins tending (mostly sedating) the bandit's wounds
Rhea will offer to assist, as needed. If nothing else, she can cast detect poison on the injured former bandit.
>>
No. 873758 ID: ab7dcc

>>873164
>Rhea will offer to assist, as needed. If nothing else, she can cast detect poison on the injured former bandit.
Former gravedigger, actually. Just some guy with a shovel and the clothes on his back now. Never even been in a real fight before, let alone done serious banditry, nor eager to again.
>rolled 5, 2, 4 = 11
>>873082
>rolled 3, 6, 5 = 14
Bite wound has some poison and other foreign matter scraped out of it, and is sterilized with alcohol and fire, then bandaged. Patient will likely survive, but should get at least a day or three of bed rest, light duties for a few weeks after that, and full meals with lots of garlic.

>after Nin gets his spear free
When Rhea asks, the spear's spirit says this glue will come loose on it's own in three hours, maybe less, but there's no way to speed that up short of advanced alchemy or door demolition.
>>
No. 874900 ID: ec70d9

rolled 2, 4, 2 = 8

>Not a mimic
Nin's only a little disappointed.

>Get the spear free
Nistamatsin fortunately used the ten foot pole to prod this door, not the spear. Though...

>door demolition.
The spear seems very good at this sort of thing. I imagine the flamed point won't stick to super glue.

>Former gravedigger, actually.
We should probably be keeping a closer eye on the new guys. He's no used to us injured, Nin will assign two (former) bandits to bring him back to camp.
>>
No. 874908 ID: 277677

>>874900
good to hear from you
>>
No. 877636 ID: 5c3123

>>874900
>flamed point won't stick to super glue
>rolled 2, 4, 2 = 8
It probably will produce noxious fumes, though, and unprotected mortals sometimes die just from breathing ordinary smoke in sufficient quantities. Given that you're already sending some people back to the surface for medical reasons, this is a good moment to reevaluate who needs to be down here for this trip, where they should be standing relative to each other, and what sort of safety measures are needed.
>>
No. 879202 ID: 2007b6

Alright, once you've got the door open, inside is a room approximately the same shape as the blank area on the map, but possibly slightly smaller - perspective and bad light make it hard to be sure. Only obvious feature is a wooden box reinforced with bronze bands and fittings, on the floor up against the middle of the far wall.
>>
No. 879262 ID: add037

rolled 4, 4, 3 = 11

>reevaluate who needs to be down here for this trip
Well certainly not the new guys. They don't even have any experience dungeon delving, probably better to hold onto them for potential subterrene crewmen. Probably not the entire company of bandits either. Maybe just the orcs, leaving the archers back at camp.

>where they should be standing relative to each other, and what sort of safety measures are needed.
Nin taking point as usual, along with Tall Jack Rat. Healers and valuable noncombatants like Rhea and Azure in the middle of the group, protected by shell of heavy infantry.

>wooden box reinforced with bronze bands and fittings
Is my ten foot pole free by this point? I'll go ahead and prod the box. How big is it?
>>
No. 879284 ID: 2007b6

>>879262
>I'll go ahead and
First step inside the room, your boot sticks to the floor.
>Is my ten foot pole free by this point?
No. Somebody's glove is stuck to the door's latch, the pole was used as a lever to open it.
>>
No. 879293 ID: 094652

rolled 2, 5, 5 = 12

Pog moves in to pull Nistamatsin, but Azure stops him; she wants to test something first.

Azure orders Pog to take a stick, maybe one of the shoves, and poke Nistamatsin on the anywhere. Once she's sure that Nistamatsin hasn't turned into living glue, she orders Pog to grab the boss. Carefully.

Azure wonders if the snake girl can make enough solvent for this room. But honestly? Doesn't look like there's any treasure inside, might as well lure some enemies to this area, throw them in, and do experiments with a ten-foot pole on a scalpel... thing.
>>
No. 879308 ID: a85d66

rolled 6, 1, 2 = 9

>>869716
>two outlaws are trapped behind an iron portcullis, one incapacitated due to injury

>>873073
>Ant runs away, party is re-united with outlaws

>>873164
>>873082
>>873758
>Wounded are treated

>>877636
>who’s where

Given that someone needs to escort the wounded out, and fire is possibly going to be involved somewhat soon, Isaiah offers to escort the wounded back, and points out Azure might be better suited to ensuring everyone is comfortable back at camp, if she feels so inclined. Obviously her choice though, so she may do what she sees fit with herself.

Rolling to get anyone coming back to camp safely, and I guess to watch for wandering monsters on the way out.
>>
No. 879310 ID: a85d66

rolled 6, 5, 3 = 14

Kent on the other hand, is still interested in the portcullis mechanism, and is attempting to gain a deeper, more thorough understand of its inner mechanisms, with a focus on how to raise and lower it reliably
>>
No. 879370 ID: 2007b6

>>879310
>rolled 6, 5, 3 = 14
Portcullis weighs about 250 pounds, which should be light enough for a small team with excellent hand-holds to be able to lift, except that it's also locked in place by some sort of ratchet mechanism inside the ceiling. Drop was triggered by a pressure plate on the floor, but only after weight was removed from the plate. Figuring out exactly how that was done will probably require drilling some holes in the walls to examine the mechanism directly. Jalkaren has mixed feelings about that sort of work (helps that traps almost certainly aren't relevant to a hospital's proper functioning), but more importantly, drilling holes in rock is noisy and slow.
>>
No. 879528 ID: add037

rolled 5, 6, 4 = 15

Nin slaps Pog's stick away and pulls his foot out of his boot.

We still have the tents we brought in the initial scouting run. Are the canvases big enough to lay across the floor as a barrier from the glue?
>>
No. 879957 ID: 2007b6

One of the bandits - Emrys, with the gap-toothed smile - says he's found some skeletons in the room the ant came from. Not, like, the sort that walk around wielding rusty swords, just regular corpses with no meat left on the bones. Regular apart from being embedded in the walls, anyhow.

>>879528
>We still have the tents we brought in the initial scouting run. Are the canvases big enough to lay across the floor as a barrier from the glue?
>rolled 5, 6, 4 = 15
Due to a miscommunication, tent-fabric is dumped out on the floor in a rumpled pile. The first three or four feet of floor are thoroughly covered, but that's only about 10% of the necessary distance. Also, Nin's boot has been buried under the cloth.
>>
No. 879963 ID: 094652

After careful thought, Azure finally comes up with an idea:

The party has shovels and a wheelbarrow.

Why not simply pour gravel and rubble over the glue? Or even a few stone blocks?

Call it renovation. Some nobles have a strange preference to "stucco".
>>
No. 880387 ID: 3abd97

>>879963
Rhea agrees that covering a glue-y floor with dirt or stone dust is probably a better idea than trying to find enough canvas, and easier to spread neatly.

We probably want to get Nin loose first though.

>>879262
>Well certainly not the new guys. They don't even have any experience dungeon delving, probably better to hold onto them for potential subterrene crewmen. Probably not the entire company of bandits either. Maybe just the orcs, leaving the archers back at camp.
The camp's probably big enough at this point that the non-coms could do chores or cleaning or other stuff to keep the place livable. Well, the three of them not on bed rest at least.

If we're sending any of the former-bandits (hmm, hospital re-clam-a-tion team?) back, maybe they should set up a watch in that new tower.
>>
No. 880465 ID: d22dc0

rolled 6, 5, 6 = 17

>>880387
Since Isaiah is escorting the wounded and others who want out to camp, he'll grab a wheelbarrow and digging equipment before heading to the room they found the courier and Valeno in, to start the process of covering the floor in rubble.
>>
No. 880466 ID: d22dc0

rolled 1, 3, 6 = 10

Kent will try to assist Nin with getting the canvas and boot free, to make the floor easier to cover. Kent also does a cursory check to make sure the floor isn't some sort of hungry monster waiting to swallow up anything that gets too far in, although the sticky glue would probably make that difficult. They're sure they read something about that in a book once.
>>
No. 880834 ID: add037

rolled 1, 5, 6 = 12

>Due to a miscommunication, tent-fabric is dumped out on the floor in a rumpled pile. The first three or four feet of floor are thoroughly covered, but that's only about 10% of the necessary distance. Also, Nin's boot has been buried under the cloth.
These mortals are adorable. Nin gives an exaggerated thumbs up.

>Why not simply pour gravel and rubble over the glue? Or even a few stone blocks?
Good thinking! We'll get the orcs on it immediately.

>If we're sending any of the former-bandits (hmm, hospital re-clam-a-tion team?) back, maybe they should set up a watch in that new tower.
Right, we don't need a small army for dungeon delving. Best to keep most of our minions back at camp so it's all well-guarded and in working order.

Nin will take his other boot off so he's symmetrical again.
>>
No. 881417 ID: 2007b6

After far too much of this hilarity, you've got a walkable path from the door to the treasure chest. It consists of, sequentially: rumpled canvas, stone debris, an overturned wheelbarrow, Pog's boots, socks, feet, legs, buttocks, torso, shoulders, right arm, and a thick tree branch.

The lock isn't anything special, and presents a comparatively insignificant delay. Inside are exactly five hundred gold coins, of the sort still minted in Passholdt, and one silver coin with an unfamiliar elf queen's face in profile. She's got an odd pock-mark on her cheek, which looks like an intentional part of the design rather than later damage. Reverse side is a dense spiraling mass of elvish ideograms vaguely resembling a spiderweb, illegible without better light and magnification.
>>
No. 881439 ID: 094652

>>881417
"... Isiah? That's coming out of your paycheck."

Azure calms Pog down, ordering him to focus on breathing. She breathes a sigh of relief when he has little trouble breathing.

Azure will distribute the gold coins according to pay grade standards for all party members and employees (Jack gets an extra 25 to to make up for the ludicrously overcharged mining supplies). Azure is fascinated by the strange silver coin, but also wary. There is a spiderweb pattern on one side, and this whole place is covered in glue. There might be a symbolic reason why this coin was in this specific room.

Azure racks her head for a few minutes, and then manages to remember why it's against Youngmason policy to simply glue everything together; a little oil can turn a 100% glue-connected house into a collapsing deathtrap. Some of her family's business rivals have tried this, only to be arrested by the locals after their houses collapsed. Most of the time, the Youngmasons just advertise their rivals using glue without an architecture degree to nip them in the bud; those houses are clearly unstable.

If they buy some barrels of cooking oil from the inn (and new wheelbarrows), that should work. They can use the remaining oil to roast some steaks, get everyone's morale up.

Isiah's buying.
>>
No. 881519 ID: 3abd97

rolled 4, 5, 3 = 12

>Azure will distribute the gold coins according to
Perhaps that's best left for after we return to camp?

>one silver coin with an unfamiliar elf queen's face in profile. She's got an odd pock-mark on her cheek, which looks like an intentional part of the design rather than later damage. Reverse side is a dense spiraling mass of elvish ideograms vaguely resembling a spiderweb, illegible without better light and magnification.
We could use Mode to zoom in and get a good look, but again, investigating the coin in detail is probably best done in camp.

Would Azure or Isaiah like to try Detect Magic?

>Pog and the wheelbarrow glued to the floor.
Hmm. Could try talking fire into consuming the glue but not things (and people) we care about, but using up the air in the room, and producing a bunch of unhealthy fumes would be bad. (I don't think Rhea's Air Bubble spell is long lasting enough to resolve that, either).

Let's ask elder fire spirit: is this more of the same glue that will let go in a few hours if we wait it out?
>>
No. 881530 ID: 094652

rolled 4, 5, 1 = 10

>Perhaps that's best left for after we return to camp?
"Kay."

>Would Azure or Isaiah like to try Detect Magic?
Oh yeah I forgot about that.

Azure scans the coin. Isiah can try after she's done.
>>
No. 881628 ID: d22dc0

rolled 4, 6, 2 = 12

>>881439
Do we have a pay grade standard written down? I feel like NIN would be in charge of such an administrative task if e don't have one handy, but since strngy is a bit busy, and NIN would probably just make some nauseating shrug-esque motion, we could fall back on the structure from our first adventure with pirate captain Marjike. I think we can all agree Magey is the most organized of us here- is it too much to ask for you to post a quick ref list of relevant PCs and NPCs?

>"... Isiah? That's coming out of your paycheck."

"I'm happy to allocate a portion of personal funds to improving our accouterments and apparatus; of course, if anyone volunteers to keep an inventory of what we want for, I'll certainly be more effective on future supply runs. If this is a personal favor we can determine a suitable trade agreement based on your needs, however, if this benefits the entire caravan it might be mutually beneficial to arrange something that involves everyone; a shrine to Hansper is typically placed outside major roads or left to travel the river ways, but it would be Just if we had a proper place to pray for safe travels and lucrative trades."

As for the coin, well, something give Isaiah the Heebie Geebies here- a quick scan for threats is appropriate, as well as a mental check to see if he remembers seeing anything like this in his travel through the River Freedoms. Still, if such a bounty can be trusted, and does send the wrath of a plundered Deity upon them or other such misfortune, Hanspur must be thanked appropriately. What can Isaiah do to foster more trade in the region?

Rolling for a knowledge check and mage sight
>>
No. 881917 ID: add037

rolled 1, 2, 6 = 9

>They're arguing about shiny things again
"Quiet, all of you! Everybody will be paid fairly when we have the time. Until then, our quartermaster will hold onto whatever quarters, silver dollars, or other random coins we find. I want you all to focus on getting Pog unglued from the floor. Any ideas?"

Nin points out that Rhea's glue burning option might be feasible if we can get Jalkaren to purify the air during the process.
>>
No. 881924 ID: 2007b6

None of the coins are perceptibly magical, and while Isaiah vaguely recognizes imagery on the silver coin from somewhere, he can't recall useful details.

Should be possible to retrieve all your stuff that's become stuck to the floor, but that means enduring up to three hours of wandering monster checks. More, if anyone fumbles the pickup. If you need Pog back in action sooner than that, Azure could surgically remove affected sections of his skin, though 'helicopter' would have to stay behind until the glue wears off.

Where are you headed next? There are three possible approaches to the second blank section identified here, >>866906 or you could have Mode scan it remotely. In fact, since that 500-yard range functions vertically as well, Mode could in principle stay on the surface - even the top of that new stone watchtower - while conducting scans of the entire hospital. That way, Tethru wouldn't even need to worry about contamination.
>>
No. 881933 ID: d22dc0

>>881924
Kent and Isaiah will have a seat near the entrance of the glue room and wait for the opportunity to help out.
>>
No. 881949 ID: add037

rolled 6, 4, 5 = 15

Well we can't leave Pog alone to get eaten by ants, so I guess we're waiting til either the glue wears off or Azure cuts him free.

If we were going to have Mode scan the place, it seems like we should have done so before we came down. We'll try this route to the next room first, Nin will make sure to warn everybody about the trap door.
>>
No. 882082 ID: 094652

rolled 5, 2, 3 = 10

>>881949
Well okay, Azure can try, but generally her one-on-one surgical sessions with Pog usually concentrate around a specific area so Pog can focus on blocking out the pain, and when the surgery involves large sections of his body he tends to flail around, and even if she gets him out of the glue, 'Helicopter' is important to him so he would just sit around waiting near the pickaxe and hammer to dry out and if Azure ordered him to leave he would but he'd whine about it for hours and-

She's stuck, isn't she.
>>
No. 882657 ID: 2007b6

rolled 3, 5 = 8

>>881949
>this route
Were you intending to include a picture, there?
>warn everybody about the trap door
>rolled 6, 4, 5 = 15
Owen the long-haired bandit spearman turns around in mid-stride, starts to say "What trap door?" and falls in. Rolling for damage; on a 7+, one of his legs is going to be out of commission.
>>882082
Azure successfully excises the portions of Pog's skin which are stuck to the floor, and bandages up the raw flesh underneath until she runs out of appropriate bandaging materials. Once he's got better leverage, Pog manages to separate his tools (and collar) from the floor by brute strength.
>>
No. 883179 ID: add037

rolled 3, 3, 6 = 12

>It seems reasonable we would have tried to look up ... Helen
Helen shouldn't be too hard to find, since she's just hanging out in Zelkor's Ferry.

Speaking of Helen, since she's not doing much and is no stranger to breaking other peoples' shit, how about a roll to try to pilot that subterrene?
>>
No. 883181 ID: add037
File 152577313878.png - (440.12KB , 753x997 , route2_.png )
883181

rolled 5, 1, 5 = 11

>Were you intending to include a picture, there?
Yeah my bad, here it is.

>Owen the long-haired bandit spearman turns around in mid-stride, starts to say "What trap door?" and falls in.
Nin will try to stay focused on getting Owen out of the pit despite his hysterical cackling. Geoffrey's heal spells can fix broken legs, right? Probably should have had Geoffrey fix up the first guy who went down too.
>>
No. 883211 ID: d22dc0

rolled 5, 2, 2 = 9

>>883181
Isaiah luckily has some rope back at camp; something something I'll return promptly.

Isaiah goes to get the rope and return to help get out friend out of the pit.

Kent takes the more direct route, and after removing gloves and shoes, they simply climb down, grabbing Owen. Not being particularly strong it might be difficult for them to actually get back up- if it proves too strenuous the addition of rope and possibly Pogs strength will certainly help. If all else fails, we could always use the rescue carry and just jump out, but Kent doesn't want to risk hurting Owen further if possible.
>>
No. 883380 ID: 2007b6

>>883181
Looks like Owen sprained his ankle, but nothing's actually broken. Any combination of magic, mundane medical care, and/or normal bed rest sufficient to restore the lost HP will put him back at 100%, assuming no further injuries.
>>883211
The pit's only about ten feet deep, bare stone all over, so Kent can simply hop down, scoop up Owen in a fireman's carry, and hop back up, with barely more effort than climbing a flight of stairs.

Owen claims to have found some sort of keyhole on the floor at the bottom of the pit, which he suspects may be part of a fiendishly complex puzzle. A fist-sized indentation with two thin notches, too narrow to fit even his pinky fingers in. Sorta like if someone had shoved an open pair of scissors through an apple, trying to cut it in half, and got stuck partway.
>>
No. 883389 ID: 094652

>>883380
Azure wonders if you're supposed to "use imp head with hole", or some other sentient creature with a small head and a priority of 'expendable'. Or maybe the key is a ball with retractable thin key cards. Also, has anyone thought of just literally using scissors in that hole?

After a few moments in thought, Pog's wincing prompts Azure to look at his injuries. Azure decides that maybe they should accompany Isiah back to the base and nurse all the mildly wounded.
>>
No. 883429 ID: d22dc0

rolled 4, 5, 5 = 14

>>883389
Isaiah will oblige and escort the wounded back to camp again.

Just to take stock, all the outlaws are back at camp now, or should be unless they're very passionate about dungoneering; If Isaiah, Pog and Azure are back at camp as well, + Valeno, we have Kent, Nin, Rhea, Geoffery, and Tall Jack Rats Crew. It's probably best if Geoffery is back at camp healing and being far from danger, if for no other reason than to give Strngy a break. How many of TJRC are with us, and how many are back at camp? We'll take all the hale and able bodies, but any injured or otherwise unfit are best left at base. Don't see a reason to post guards if we have a good number of PCs and NPCs. Isaiah can do the heavy lifting while Azure helps spruce up the camp and makes a list of living amenities for them to get. Maybe digging out a pit, baking the soil and then filling it with water would be useful- Azure and Rhea can heat it at night, and Isaiah can fill it a couple times a day to give us fresh bathing water.

Rolling for Isaiah to help set up camp and start making a bath.
>>
No. 883430 ID: d22dc0

rolled 3, 5, 1 = 9

>>883380
Obviously this intrigues Kent. Drawing attached is for clarification, but I assuming it's like the right side based on the scissor analogy. Does a quick probe reveal anything more about its nature? Kent is still bare foot/handed.

Rolling to investigate.
>>
No. 883636 ID: 2007b6

>>840375
>>883430
>rolled 3, 5, 1 = 9
There's no apparent mechanism, mechanical or otherwise, to authenticate a key inserted into that odd hole and transmit resultant information elsewhere. It looks almost exactly as though someone stabbed the pit's floor with a bolt of force shaped like a giant centipede's head, most likely within the past few days if the lack of other debris and insects is anything to go by.
>>
No. 883639 ID: 2007b6

>>883429
>bath
>digging out a pit
Soil on a hilltop isn't likely to retain water very well, and hauling it all the way up there would be a lot of work. Tall Jack Rat's crew mentioned some pre-existing pools down in the dungeon, which you haven't looked over yet, or Nistamatsin could direct Lt.Cmdr. Jalkaren to set up the structural components of a luxurious https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Thermae - though she says you would need to hire some plumbing contractors to hammer out the finer functional details. There's also the issue of fuel: need to burn a significant amount of wood to heat a cubic yard or more of water, and someone will have to be going outside the secure perimeter to collect it. Alternatively, something could be worked out with another magic-user or spirit, usually far more expensive up front, but worthwhile for daily logistical convenience.
>>
No. 883663 ID: d22dc0

rolled 2, 4, 6 = 12

>>883639
>Soil on a hilltop isn't likely to retain water very well, and hauling it all the way up there would be a lot of work

Hence the baking of the soil. Isaiah digs the pit, and then they fire treat it to make it retain water better. Not sure what “hauling it up there” means in this case

As for heating the water, Isaiah was thinking rhea and Azure might be up for the task; certainly they don’t have to, but thy would be the best suited, and bathing is enjoyed by people across a number of race and creeds. If the idea doesn’t pan out then oh well, but there’s only so much mundane camp prep someone can do before the run out of chores. If it’s really just a waste of time Isaiah could start carving out the space to create a new road from the hospital to Zelkors Ferry, since eventually they’ll want the working edifice to be attached to civilization in a meaningful way.
>>
No. 883751 ID: 3abd97

>It looks almost exactly as though someone stabbed the pit's floor with a bolt of force shaped like a giant centipede's head
...does Nin's head fit when he's wearing his centipede face?

Maybe it's just damage, from when a giant centipede was reinforced somehow.

>Isiah want to build a bath
While our new friends could benefit from increased cleanliness Rhea is baffled as to why we'd try to accomplish this with a drowning death trap!

Maybe Isaiah's madness can be excused. It's not like he needs to breathe.

>>883663
>Not sure what “hauling it up there” means in this case
You'd have to move (haul) water uphill to fill your bath. Hilltops are good for defensible campsites, inconvenient for bathhouses.

>>883429
>Don't see a reason to post guards if we have a good number of PCs and NPCs
To prevent any of those nice people from being caught off guard by something dangerous from the wilderness?
>>
No. 883795 ID: 094652

Azure suggests they have the local blacksmith build a screw plow to move the water uphill with minimal effort.

Technically, they could do it themselves by carving up a tree into a screw-shape, and then coat the tree screw with a layer of clay and bake it without burning the tree (Rhea's ability is weird), then take a bigger tree and hollow out the inside. Then any water carried to the base of the hill can be dumped straight into a trowel with the base of the screw pump, and the filtering station can be placed at the top of the hill. The problem is, will the local defender of the woods get pissed off if we import a tree from outside of her territory only to be ritually carved, or come bearing a carved heathen screw?
>>
No. 883813 ID: d22dc0

>>883751
Ah, water, Isaiah was just going to pull it out of the air.

>super drowning powers

Ah, but course, I've been inconsiderate of you, my apologies. I can ensure the bathing area is properly enclosed so that we might prevent the majority of accidents before their occurrence. Still, heated baths are often preferred, I wonder how we might accomplish such a task. Perhaps the solution will dawn on me at a later date.


>Isaiah doesn't need to breath
Of course, no one's mentioning that fact to him, right?

>screw pump

If we do need a mundane method of carrying water that would probably be an easier mechanism to build and use. If Isaiah can just pull the water from the air though, shouldn't be a problem.

Obviously though if Nin wants to negotiate the creation of a bathing area, by all means, Isaiah would welcome such a deal. Currently though, the demon seems to be occupied elsewhere, and Isaiah is not.
>>
No. 884412 ID: 2007b6

Civil engineering aside, further efforts at breaching Blank Area #2 through the apparent door at the back of the alcove marked with a fanged goat's face have met with abject failure, and densitometric scrying eventually reveals that there isn't actually a door there at all (apart from the pit trap), just wood paneling securely affixed to a solid stone wall no less than six feet thick.

Discussion with the bandits reveals that the remaining entrances to Blank Areas 2 and 3 are familiar to them, consisting of dead-end rooms apparently empty of mysteries or unclaimed loot.

Blank Area 4, however, has five magical pools: the first contains clean and wholesome water, the second is tainted by a slow paralytic poison, the third contains some sort of perfectly transparent and self-purifying oil which is indigestible (and sickening, though far from deadly) but makes magical auras visible to the naked eye, the fourth seems to have variable effects, and the last contains no liquid at all, only illusion. Anyone who's heard the sound of the voice of someone that tried to drink from the illusory pool will then misremember which pool is which, even to the point of scribbling out previously-taken notes. The effect isn't permanent; it only seems to persist through a few hours of normal conversation, or until the drinker eats a significant quantity of salt or screams themselves hoarse. Distorted memories remain until corrected by evidence, though, and the pools all look roughly the same apart from their relative placement in the room.

Also, as a more recent issue, the pool room has become infested with striges.
>>
No. 884510 ID: d22dc0

>>884412
>empty of mysteries or unclaimed loot.

What of threats? We are on commission to clear this place out.

>striges
Isaiah volunteers, with a silent nod to some of the crew he's known longer- particularly those who were in the labyrinth with him. Dark times. Obviously though the striges will have trouble sucking his blood through heavy plated steel. Nin, you also seem to have plenty of blood to spare, care to join? Rhea might be more affected by blood loss but also better equipped given she could torch a whole cloud of them at once. After the stirges have been wiped out Kent seems uniquely equipped to deal with the memory distorting pool given that they likely won't infect others. Other work arounds are probably also available.
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No. 884663 ID: 3abd97

>Nin, you also seem to have plenty of blood to spare, care to join?
If any striges bit Nin wouldn't they... pop?

>Rhea might be more affected by blood loss but also better equipped given she could torch a whole cloud of them at once.
A cone of burning hands if we catch them sleeping might be an opening move. Assuming they don't work like keese http://www.awkwardzombie.com/index.php?page=0&comic=082310

If they're more spread out, a cloud of scalding steam from channel energy would be better for flooding the room (I assume everyone in the party meets condition 3 by now? >>830978 Isaiah might qualify for condition 1 too, actually), although limiting visibility around those pools seems like a bad idea.
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No. 884664 ID: 2007b6

>>884510
>What of threats?
Might be some rats or something else minor moved in since they last checked, but as far as the bandits are concerned, any serious threat must also be at least a little bit of a mystery. Real warfare is ultimately based on deception, after all.
>Obviously though the striges will have trouble sucking his blood through heavy plated steel. Nin, you also seem to have plenty of blood to spare, care to join?
They're actually quite skilled at targeting joints or other weak spots in armor, including eye-slits, so Nistamatsin might want to protect himself accordingly - a barrel helm worn backwards would be enough to keep the eyes safe. Last time striges tried to feed on him, they popped like mishandled water balloons. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IueMdK9I4Qg
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No. 884672 ID: d22dc0

>>884663
New members might not be on contract yet, something to sort out tonight. I don’t think Isaiah counts as one of those? Not really aligned with fire, and I don’t think tesseract squid fits in any of the listed categories. That being said, hes more than confident he and Hanspur can keep everything under wraps and in working order. Isaiah would be curious to see if Rhea CAN heal him; a curious proposal to be tested perhaps without the crowd of new members their merry band has accrued?

Stirges might not be overly bothered by an increase in temperature and humidity- from what Isaiah remembers, the parasites spend most of their time in stagnant, swampy water. That sytle of climate tends to run on the hot and wet side of things. Tangentially, doesn Rhea know how to combat disease? Isaiah doesn’t have much success with combating infirmities of the flesh and mind, but that might become relevant immediately after an encounter with disease riddled, blood sucking, airborn vermin.
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No. 884676 ID: 3abd97

>>884672
I was wondering if a water affinity and being a sort-of golem was close enough.

>Tangentially, doesn Rhea know how to combat disease?
Generally? Cleanliness and eating healthy!

More immediately, yes, Remove Sickness is on the cleric list.
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No. 884688 ID: d22dc0

rolled 5, 3, 1 = 9

>>884676
I forgot water elemental made the list! Guess we may have an opportunity to see results sooner, rather than later!

Isaiah finishes up tidying things around camp, and heads towards the room with the pools, presumably from the doorway near E through the doorway near B, straight down the corridor. Talk Jack Rats old crew didn't mention any other specific dangers, so Isaiah will just go ahead and check the surrounding area by feel, looking for anything of note that hasn't been marked before breaching. Rhea has encountered them before, yes? About 1-2 hands high depending on your hand size, traditionally armed with several wings, strong claws to keep from becoming dislodged before they drain their target dry? They're deceptively fast as well- with their size, they can be difficult to cut down, and they can kill a hearty beast or unwary fool in the time it takes to toast and break bread.

Anyone else coming with?

Rolling for perception, checking for traps or anything else of note on the way to the doorway by blank space #4
>>
No. 885044 ID: 2007b6

>>884688
Nothing unusual about the door. Room beyond approximates a 50' cone with the point of origin centered at the entry door https://www.d20pfsrd.com/gamemastering/combat/space-reach-threatened-area-templates/ or rather, the upper half of one. Flat floor, arched ceiling. One pool is in the center of the room, the other four evenly spaced along the back wall. All are 10' in diameter, and appear to be 3' deep
>rolled 5, 3, 1 = 9
but Isaiah's river-sense can pick up on paths leading back to sources far away below. Two of them feel oddly dry, under that same sense: the central one, and the one closest to the door on the left-hand wall. Among the remaining three, the two on the right have seen far less death between them than the second from the left.

No sign of striges, not even their iron-colored crapstains. If they're actively feeding right here, they must be nesting somewhere else nearby to sleep and digest their meals.
>>
No. 885049 ID: 094652

rolled 5, 6, 4 = 15

Azure decided to come back with Isiah after confirming that Pog stopped 'owies' and the other employees were stable.

Azure detects magic, and then attempts to use Dancing Lights to draw out any stray striges.

Pog is on standby. He'll assist the next person who attempts to open an unexplored area.
>>
No. 885323 ID: 3abd97

rolled 1, 5, 5 = 11

Does the door to this room shut? Rhea doesn't think striges can open doors.

Spot check! Anything look like how the striges are getting in and out? ...could they be hiding below the illusory water, maybe?

>Rhea has encountered them before, yes?
Rhea taught the goyles how to make wards to keep striges out, but didn't actually run into any herself in the Bloodmist Labyrith. She did encounter some cave shrikes.

More generally, maybe? Given her background, some familiarity with underground pests doesn't seem unreasonable.
>>
No. 885388 ID: 2007b6

>>885323
>Does the door to this room shut? Rhea doesn't think striges can open doors.
The hinges are rusty and stiff enough that Rhea herself would have some difficulty opening or closing the door in a hurry. Striges have a two-foot wingspan and weigh about a pound, so with some luck they might be able to paw open a latch or wiggle under improperly secured mosquito netting, but they can't fit through any gap too narrow and sturdy to accommodate an average adult's hand, so the door leading to the pool room is almost certainly an impassable barrier to them when it's shut.
>Spot check! Anything look like how the striges are getting in and out?
There's a hole in the left-hand wall, between the doors. Maybe a crude arrow slit?
>...could they be hiding below the illusory water, maybe?
Also possible. Which pool are you going to check first, and how?

>>885049
>rolled 5, 6, 4 = 15
Azure confirms that something, somewhere in the room is magical, but whatever it is has no interest in coming out and following the pretty lights, no matter how they prance and caper.
>>
No. 885525 ID: add037

rolled 1, 5, 1 = 7

>Nistamatsin could direct Lt.Cmdr. Jalkaren to set up the structural components of a luxurious https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Thermae
Oh hell yes, Nin can't wait to fill that thing with blood. Will have to send somebody to Passholdt to look for contractors once we're done here today.

>...does Nin's head fit when he's wearing his centipede face?
"You can all stop gawking at my face print. It's not that funny."

>a barrel helm worn backwards would be enough to keep the eyes safe.
Don't think we have one of those onhand. Would a Shield spell suffice?

>Last time striges tried to feed on him, they popped like mishandled water balloons.
Hahaha Nin is definitely leading the charge.

>There's a hole in the left-hand wall, between the doors. Maybe a crude arrow slit?
What happens if I stick the flame spear inside?
>>
No. 885625 ID: 3abd97

rolled 5, 3, 6 = 14

>Which pool are you going to check first, and how?
Rhea probably shouldn't be poking around in the pools. Aside from her whole water problem, if she picks the pool of sickening oil and accidentally lights it, the whole group might be affected.

Can Isaiah sense which ones are water?

Or, ooh! The Hecate pendant might see through an illusion. It worked on that text before. Rhea will give that a try, see if the pools look any different that way.
>>
No. 885641 ID: 2007b6

>>885525
> fill that thing with blood
You'd need some sort of magical preservation to stop the blood from coagulating and getting all sticky and gross. After a few days it'd be like trying to bathe in cold caramel apple dip.
>stick the flame spear inside
>rolled 1, 5, 1 = 7
Lots of fluttering and shrieking. Seems you've found the strige's nest.
>>885625
>if she picks the pool of sickening oil and accidentally lights it, the whole group might be affected.
Rhea knows enough geology and chemistry to be aware that not all oil is lamp oil. The bandits have never gotten this stuff to ignite, so it's probably some kind of https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Silicone_oil
>Silicone oils are primarily used as lubricants, thermic fluid oils or hydraulic fluids. They are excellent electrical insulators[2] and, unlike their carbon analogues, are non-flammable.
>Or, ooh! The Hecate pendant might see through an illusion.
Nope. Looks the same.
>Can Isaiah sense which ones are water?
>>885044
>Two of them feel oddly dry,
>>
No. 885663 ID: add037

rolled 5, 3, 3 = 11

>magical preservation to stop the blood from coagulating and getting all sticky and gross
Shouldn't be too costly I imagine. Blood pools are a hot commodity, though bathing in caramel apple dip doesn't sound like a bad time either...

>Seems you've found the strige's nest.
I bet a single Burning Hands into that hole will solve all our problems. Nin will ask Rhea to ask the flame spear what it sees in there. (he'll keep the hole safely plugged until we decide to do something with it)
>>
No. 885817 ID: 3abd97

rolled 3, 6, 3 = 12

>>Or, ooh! The Hecate pendant might see through an illusion.
>Nope. Looks the same.
Not illusions, Rhea muses. Meaning maybe, or text, or [cryptography]?

>Nin will ask Rhea to ask the flame spear what it sees in there.
Okay!

Rhea will respectfully convey Nin's request to the elder flame.
>>
No. 886171 ID: 2007b6

>>885817
The spear says it's still pretty dark in there, and asks Rhea to spray some lamp oil through the hole. Fill up a wineskin and squeeze it between her forearms, maybe.
>>
No. 886211 ID: 3abd97

rolled 5, 5, 4 = 14

>>886171
Alright, Rhea will give that a try! Is she tall enough to reach the hole in the wall, or will she need a boost from one of the others?

>Old man asks much younger girl to spay oil all over him
>>
No. 886486 ID: 2007b6

>>886211
After spraying oil through the hole, with the spear inside, there's a brief bright light and a sensation like being punched in the gut. Nin and Rhea see smoke come out of the hole, and the door to the side room is blown off it's hinges, flying some twenty feet, then flipping over and disappearing into one of the pools. Oddly, it doesn't seem to make any noise, either on launch or impact. Only thing audible to either of them at the moment is shrill, tuneless whistling.

There were... maybe a dozen striges nesting in the side room. None left now, just pulverized remains and a few scattered shiny trinkets.
>>
No. 886783 ID: add037

rolled 3, 3, 3 = 9

Very efficient! Nin will quickly go around and make sure none of his minions are hurt (aside from apparent tinnitus).

Also, is the spear damaged?
>>
No. 886825 ID: 3abd97

rolled 5, 5, 3 = 13

Rhea adopts the traditional manic grin worn by goblins everywhere after surviving an unplanned explosion.

Not that fireballs are often a threat to her personally, it's cultural.

>None left now, just pulverized remains and a few scattered shiny trinkets.
Well, since Nin is checking up on the others (maybe he's getting the hang of this responsible leadership thing!), it falls to Rhea to check if there's anything of note or value among the trinkets.
>>
No. 886839 ID: 094652

rolled 1, 5, 3 = 9

Azure hid behind Pog. She checks herself for any burning feathers.

Pog will check to make sure the striges are dead, take the trinkets, and show them to Azure for appraisal.
>>
No. 887277 ID: 2007b6

>>886783
>is the spear damaged?
Of course not. If anything, it seems to be slightly more smug than before.
>>886825
>check if there's anything of note or value among the trinkets.
>>886839
>take the trinkets, and show them to Azure for appraisal.
Necklace of jade beads with a silver coin hanging from it, stamped with a pattern resembling the full moon on one side, a jackal's head on the other. Palm-sized glass mirror with silver backing, miraculously intact. Two-carat diamond. The rest seems to be garbage.
>Pog will check to make sure the striges are dead,
Now they're definitely more dead and less three-dimensional than they were before he started stomping.
>>
No. 887325 ID: 3abd97
File 152799800831.png - (15.18KB , 698x477 , Pools.png )
887325

rolled 6, 1, 4 = 11

>Necklace of jade beads with a silver coin hanging from it, stamped with a pattern resembling the full moon on one side, a jackal's head on the other
Maybe something to do with [lycanthropy]? If there's a jackal kind.

>Two of them feel oddly dry, under that same sense: the central one, and the one closest to the door on the left-hand wall. Among the remaining three, the two on the right have seen far less death between them than the second from the left.
Since the PCs entered from the point of the cone, pools A and E are the oil and illusion (further testing needed to know which is which).

Rhea will cast detect poison to see which pool is that one.

Do we want to stick around and try to figure out which pool is which, or should we continue clearing other dangers from the hospital? We'll have to clean up the pools eventually, but they aren't wandering around attacking people.
>>
No. 887388 ID: d22dc0

>>887325
Kent posits that the easiest way to double check would be drinking the water. Obviously, having suggested it, they’re happy to volunteer. If their predictions are correct then as long as no one allows notes to be changed and such, getting the right arrangement confirmed should be easy. Still, you are correct when mentioning that, long term, this hardly seems particularly important. It would be nice to have the fresh water pool confirmed as safe to drink from.

Kent will pull off their face mask, let their stomach settle, and assuming there’s no outwardly visible contaminants or other obvious hazards, drinks from pool A.
>>
No. 887390 ID: 2007b6

>>887388
>drinks from pool A
In Kent's cupped hands, it feels viscous and sticky, a little bit like cold beef stew with too much tallow. Taking a sip, it tastes like kerosene cut with chalk dust.

Kent is now retching.

>>887325
>cast detect poison
Ash and smoke from the recent explosion produce false positives, but pools A and D stand out as being notably more poisonous than the rest of the room, or poisonous in a more complicated way, while E (the one the door fell into and disappeared) is giving results from further down below the floor than should be possible.
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No. 887458 ID: fc3fc0

rolled 5, 2, 4 = 11

>>887390
Kent points to the pool of oil, and gives a weak thumbs down. Lets roll to recover

In an incredible comedy of errors, I seemingly didn't read magey's recent post thoroughly, assumed that A correlated to 1, b to 2, etc, didn't read back to double check based on what we know, and forgot to roll. Seems like if you do that many things wrong at once at least one person should be dead.
>>
No. 887503 ID: 3abd97

rolled 3, 2, 3 = 8

Okay after that testing I think that's:

A - 3. Sickening Oil
B - 1. or 4.
C - 1. or 4.
D - 2. Paralytic Poison
E - 5. Illusion

1. Pure Water, 4. Variable Effects

>>887458
Rhea will tend to Kent!
>>
No. 887514 ID: 2007b6

>>887503
>>887458
Kent's condition is stable, and will be fully recovered within the hour - apart from that recent meal, which is of course a total loss.

Where next?
>>
No. 887522 ID: d22dc0

>>887514
Kent, now once again fully outfitted, though still feeling a bit weak after loosing their lunch, suggests they check out the two rooms the bandits said were empty, just for the sake of thoroughness. Won't hurt that Kent might be adorned with extra sensory sight as well- can they detect any sort of magical auras or the like?

Isaiah wants to mark the pools, and upon hearing this, Kent is in agreement, having gotten a bit distracted from doing it after their unpleasant cleanse. Can Isaiah break the floor a bit, and use mending to re-shape the bricks into a distinct arrangement? Or will the pieces simply fall back into their appropriate places?

After that's sorted, 3 seems easier to get too, as you can take door C to avoid the trap that would otherwise impede movement. 2 currently seems more blocked off, but assuming 3 is cleared easily enough, 2 can be next on the list.

Rolling to mark the different pools in a clear and understandable format which is difficult or time consuming to alter.
>>
No. 887523 ID: d22dc0

rolled 1, 2, 5 = 8

>>887522
Forgot to roll
>>
No. 887596 ID: 3abd97

rolled 3, 5, 6 = 14

>apart from that recent meal, which is of course a total loss
We'll have to see about replacing that later!

>Kent [...] suggests they check out the two rooms the bandits said were empty, just for the sake of thoroughness.
Blanks 2 and 3? Sure, seems reasonable, double check that nothing has moved in while we're nearby.

Roll for spot / awareness / whatever for transit after Kent and Isaiah have finished their attempt to score the floor.
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No. 887669 ID: 094652

rolled 5, 4, 2 = 11

Azure is eager to get away from Kent until the stench of vomit dissipates. She'll do a quick search of all previously visited rooms (just a lookaround for the glue room) and then regroup with Nistamatsin so they can open another door and get on with treasure hunting.
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No. 887699 ID: 2007b6

>>887522
>Rolling to mark the different pools in a clear and understandable format which is difficult or time consuming to alter.
https://www.d20pfsrd.com/magic/all-spells/a/arcane-mark/
Which pool are you marking with what information, exactly?
>>887669
>quick search of all previously visited rooms
Azure wanders off alone into the room with the giant skeleton statue and is now being attacked by giant leeches.
>>887596
>Roll for spot / awareness / whatever for transit