Shadows of the Mercenary Part 6

ProfessorHill ProfessorHill April 21, 2014
I can’t believe the apprentice skewered the dark elf with his thin blade. There may be more to him than it first appeared. Aeron then whispered to Merchant Blend and Acolyte Rumil, “Merchant Blend, let the novice practice his divination on the shadow knight to help discern if any of his belongings are enchanted.” Aeron walked with the novice up to the prone dark elf leader(E7) and began to instruct Acolyte Rumil in the general method of detecting magical auras (Elf Envoy Power Detect Magic…focusing on the shadow knight then sweeping the area).

AFCop AFCop April 22, 2014
Blend waited passively and let the “novice” cast his spell of divination. However, while he appeared to be indifferent to his surroundings, he was actually very wary of the possibility of a drua regroup and another attack.

the_app the_app April 22, 2014
Rumil, after slaying the druas, went to look over the two fallen comrades, who lay prone next to the now motionless body. While a bit hesitant to near the ranger, who was being watched by his protective animal companion, he quickly moved on upon noticing the half-breed waking. Shylent, on the other hand, seemed to be enjoying the effects of the druas quarrel just a bit too much, so Rumil bent down and provided her a little incentive to awaken (cast Resistance to give a +1 to saves for 1 minute), at the same time laying his hands on her to ensure she was stable and not bleeding out (Sacred Touch auto-stabilizes, just in case…since I’m not sure if she is dying or just sleeping).

After tending to the two comrades, Rumil noted that the elven mage was addressing him and offering to instruct him on magic use. Rumil, biting back the desire to ask this “wielder of the arts” if it feels odd to manipulate magic, which comes so naturally to channelers, simply nodded and followed.

After hearing the mage address the shifty Merchant Blend, Rumil without pretension, stated “I am Rúmil Celebrindal, protector of the People, servant of Corellon Larethian, and am glad I was assigned to your detail by my elders. I am at your service.” He then began the incantation to detect magic in the area (cast Detect Magic and after finishing on the main character, search the surrounding bodies/area as well), using his knowledge of the arts to determine what was valuable and what may prove dangerous (Spellcraft checks and Knowledge:Arcana when appropriate).

mmartin_10 mmartin_10 April 22, 2014
Nitram stood up and surveyed the area, frustrated by his lack of participation. Serre followed him closely – like a mother hen…or eagle – unsure of the ranger’s condition. Noticing the location of some of the tracks, Nitram patted the griffon’s neck affectionately. “Thank you, mon amie,” he said quietly.

Nitram was slightly disturbed by the loud snoring emanating from the barbarian. He bandaged the wound on her leg and sheathed Kinslayer. “How long has she been asleep?” he asked to no one in particular. Thinking of the wood sprite in his amulet he began trying to communicate with it, “Hey, little sprite. I hope you are still okay. Are you still in there? I’m sure I gave you a scare, falling asleep like that in the middle of a fight. I’ll try not to let it happen again. Is there anything you can do to help my friend here wake up?”

mmartin_10 mmartin_10 April 22, 2014
Nitram walked to chat with Blend, noting his wounds. “Thanks for picking up most of the slack while I slept. Are you well? Do you have any healing potions? Unfortunately, I’m not sure there is much I can do for you at this point. I don’t seem to have any potions.” Coming here without proper healing ability might not have been the best idea we’ve had. The ranger noticed the blade Blend picked up from a scale mailed druas. “That’s a nice blade. You’re not going to give up your deadly instruments though, are you? I’m sure Shylent would be able to put that to good use once she wakes up. The elves have there own blades andI’m happy with mine as well.” Nitram looked at the rest of the party to verify they did not prefer the longsword, he remembered they were missing someone. Looking back at Blend, Where’s Servan?"

the_app the_app April 22, 2014
Rumil, hearing bits and pieces of Nitram’s conversation with Blend, took a short break from his “training” and search. “If I may, I can attempt to heal some of your wounds through the power of Corellon. I am no cleric, nor can I say that he will grant me the healing touch, but with your permission, I can try.” Waiting for some indication from Blend, Rumil summons his strength and conviction and prepares to heal (or possibly inflict) some of the wounds covering Blend’s body (unleash Heavenly Fire / 1d4+1 healing if Blend is Good aligned or damage if evil aligned – no effect if true neutral).

AFCop AFCop April 22, 2014
Blend raised his hand in mild protest, waving off both Nitram’s offer of aid as well as Rumil’s magical aid. “No need for potion or spell. I will be fine after a little rest. Shylent or perhaps Aeron needs it more than I.” Blend stepped away before Rumil could administer his magical aid and began to scan the outskirts of the forest. “We can’t stay here. The druas live here and may as well be limitless in number. Cast your spell of divination on the items possessed by the knight. Then prepare to move. We carry Shylent if we need to. We get back over the wall. This was all a set up by the Spider. There was never any negotiations possible.” Blend paused as if he did not want to continue as he looked at Nitram. “I am afraid that Servan was taken while I was leading everyone from the wall. I was about to go do a quick search for him while you prepared everyone to leave.” Blend paused once more. “I’m sorry. If I am not back soon, light a torch and make your way back. Don’t worry about me.” With that, Blend slipped into the night, just another shadow among thousands of others.

the_app the_app April 22, 2014
Rumil looked at the mysterious shadow walker quizzically, wondering why anyone would refuse healing hands, but was not offended – as not everyone could withstand the heavenly fire from Corellon. At Blend’s suggestion, Rumil did look at the other members to see if any of them desired a bit of relief.

Rumil then went immediately back to his task of divining the magical items – attempting to quickly sort as useful, dangerous, or unknown – so as the group could pack-up and depart the area. While not nearly as experienced as this group appeared to be – Rumil trusted that the druas numbers far exceeded the capability of this party – and with at least one running back to their camp, reinforcements were likely.

AFCop AFCop April 22, 2014
It’s not hard to find out what Blend’s alignment considering you can just look at his character sheet, but that’s hardly common knowledge in game. Aeron firmly believes that Blend is constantly on the verge of betraying everyone in the party.

SkidAce SkidAce April 22, 2014
Aeron and Rumil were able to determine the general nature of the items found on the shadowknight after some concentration and discussion. Only the armor, sword, and the amulet had any auras. Rumil was able to detect the faint aura of purple on both the armor and the sword, which was confirmed by Aeron. Rumil missed the faint flickering red aura on that was also on the sword, which Aeron explained was of the conjuration school.

Cold_Iron_Longsword.jpg(+ 1 MW scale mail, + 1 mw cold iron ghost touch longsword)

The amulet was harder to discern. After several minutes of study, Aeron determined that the amulet had a strong colorless aura, but it also seemed associated with the focusing negative energy.

ProfessorHill ProfessorHill April 22, 2014
Aeron commented Acolyte Rumil, “Well met identifying the arcane auras. Your aptitude is exceptional. As the junior member of the party, it is in our best interest to strengthen you for future conflicts. You proved yourself handy with a sword. Perhaps you should hold onto the shadow knights ghost blade?” Aeron wrapped a cloth over the amulet and examined it closer for sigils or signs that may reveal its purpose or activation method (Arcane Knowledge + 17, Spellcraft + 19, Use Magic Device + 7). “The amulet seems to be a necromancy focus item. Unless anyone objects, I would like to use it to help direct the shadow…or more powerful undead we may encounter.”

ProfessorHill ProfessorHill April 22, 2014
Aeron spoke in an off-hand way to Rumil, “I would not use that celestial healing on Merchant Blend. Its like washing a pig…it’s a waste of time and just upsets the pig.” Aeron stood up from the body of the shadow knight and asked Merchant Blend, “Tell me Merchant Blend. When the druas had the advantage, was there a moment when you thought about fleeing into the woods without us?”

ProfessorHill ProfessorHill April 23, 2014
When Aeron looked over his shoulder to see Merchant Blend’s response, he realized the stealthy merchant of death was nowhere to be seen…

AFCop AFCop April 23, 2014
Obviously this occurs before Blend leaves to scout.

Blend looked at Aeron, his expression void of emotion. “Their advantage was only an illusion, wizard,” he deadpanned. “I’m a simple merchant. I am a master of compound interest. And compound interest is the most powerful force in the universe.” He turned and disappeared into the darkness.

Yes that just happened. I worked an Albert Einstein quote into an IC response.

AFCop AFCop April 23, 2014
We can go either way with Aeron’s additional post or Blend’s response. I personally think it would be a shame to delete the banter between the two :)

mmartin_10 mmartin_10 April 23, 2014
After Blend leaves, Nitram tries to get the rest of the party ready to move out. “Aeron, Rumil, we must be ready to depart as soon as Blend returns. Since Shylent is unable to carry it, one of you needs to secure it when we leave. I’ll carry Shylent until she wakes. When she does, she’ll need that new blade, but one of you can wield it until then. One of you grab that scale maile too. If we don’t use it, we can at least sell it when we get back…maybe hire a healer to travel with us.” Nitram secured his backpack to Serre’s back with some rope, ensuring it didn’t interfere with the griffon’s wings.If he can’t carry Shylent, he can at least carry my pack I’m going to need to get him a saddle or at least some saddlebags the ranger thought humorously to himself. He then used the remaining rope to tie Shylent to his torso. This is quite awkward he thought. But necessary if I’m going to be climbing.

SkidAce SkidAce April 23, 2014
“Love the banter”

the_app the_app April 23, 2014
As Aeron lifted the necklace, describing the supposed purpose, Rumil thought back to his teachings of Corellon and the rest of the pantheon. Was this item magical or an accursed totem of some evil power (Knowledge: Religion check)? Whatever it was – and whatever the purpose – Rumil was weary of Aeron’s desire to wield it – and his overall penchant to utilize undead for the “betterment” of the party.

“Thank you for the offer of the sword – and while my recent display may have exaggerated my ability a bit – I am afraid that I acted only out of desperation. I am not opposed to giving it to someone with far more familiarity with the weapon than I.” With that, Rumil proffered it to the rest of the party – but made a mental note that if no one else took it, he would at least carry it for the party, as it would be a shame to lose such an intriguing longsword.

SkidAce SkidAce April 23, 2014
Aeron suddenly realized the significance of the dragon amulet. (Arcana 23, Spellcraft 19) While the term “shadow” knight was still accurate, perhaps it would be more accurate to say “dragon” knight. The amulet was more akin to a holy symbol than Aeron was comfortable with, and was the supernatural catalyst for the knight’s magical powers that he had wielded. A link to the knight’s source of power.

ProfessorHill ProfessorHill April 23, 2014
Aeron looked at the snoring prostrate form of Shylent. “Well she is not going to be able to carry it…but even in this state she can be useful. Here, help me take off her clothes.” Aeron proceeded to take the soiled and matted furs off the barbarian. Once he realized no one was helping he clarified. “You misunderstand me. There is not enough soap in all of Aelvinwode to make that filthy barbarian approachable. I mean to strap the shadow knights magic armor on her. Because let’s face it…I don’t want to carry it and this is the only way we are going to get her to change her clothes.” The dirty task complete Aeron cast a minor spell to remove the dirt and smell of stale sweat from his hands as he turned his attention to the unclaimed sword. " Do you mind carrying the ghost blade? I’ve never swung a sword in anger…and I don’t plan on starting now. So take the sword, but be careful, more than one apprentice has been slain by the overconfidence of a magic sword."

the_app the_app April 23, 2014
Rumil, realizing that the party was about to undertake an almost impossible task, looked at Aeron and nodded – not wishing to add further burden to the already overloaded group. “I will carry the sword and if needed, can carry a few other things as well to help balance the load. I can only imagine our egress will be slow and made more difficult by the lack of light.” With that, Rumil secured the longsword (taking the scabbard as well, if the knight was wearing one) to his backpack.

While Aeron began to undress Shylent, Rumil looked down and noted he was still wearing the weird outfit given to him by Blend. “Should I remove this now that we know we aren’t exactly welcome here?” Rumil watched Aeron work on the armor with some fascination – having never seen any non-elven naked female form – noting that humans had strange proportions.

mmartin_10 mmartin_10 April 23, 2014
Nitram stops the elf from removing any of Shylent’s clothing. “You don’t need to take off her clothes to put the scale mail on her. She’s just wearing a chain shirt over her garments. Besides, she will kill you if you change her clothes while she’s asleep. Remember what happened when you tried to clean her with your magic? Besides, what makes you think I want to carry her and the scale mail?” Nitram helped removed the chain shirt and attach the scale mail to Shylent’s unconscious form, over her clothes.

AFCop AFCop April 23, 2014
This isn’t good, Blend thought. He made his way back to the rest of the group. “We have a problem,” Blend stated matter of factly, appearing out of nowhere as was his tendency to do. “About one thousand feet away, the druas are conducting a ritual of some kind, sacrificing prisoners to do so. Servan may be one of them, but I cannot be sure as I didn’t see him. Regardless, the ritual will swarm the area with a multitude of shadows. More than we can handle or outrun. The only way we have a chance of survival is to stop it.” Blend paused for a moment to let everything he said to sink in before continuing. “I’ve cleared away a path to the ruined temple area. We should be able to approach it using torches to see without drawing attention to ourselves. Once we are near, I will make sure everything is clear once more. Of course, someone will have to stay with Shylent, but we should carry her with us until we assault the ritual. There are several drua guards, similar to the ones we just encountered as well three druas conducting the ritual. Whatever we decide to do, we should do it quickly.”

the_app the_app April 23, 2014
“Is there no way to outrun them?” Rumil asks, as Blend approaches. “And if we must make our stand – is there no way to wake the sleeping female?” Rumil quickly shifts his load to ensure he is prepared for one of two outcomes – rapid egress or the fight of his life.

It slowly dawns on Rumil that this group must have been setup from the start. The druas were reportedly going to be attacked…what is to say that we are not the perceived threat? Is it so likely that two groups were poised to attacked this encampment? What has he and the elders gotten him into. He is a defender – protecting the Eladrin is his charge. This is not where he saw himself when he first took up the task of experiencing the outside world.

As Rumil came out of his own thoughts, he looked at Blend and scanned the group, “I am prepared to defend the sleeping female with my life if that is what is needed. Find an advantageous point near this camp – if that is the path you decide to follow – and I will attempt to aid the group from there and keep this warrior under my watchful eye.”

mmartin_10 mmartin_10 April 23, 2014
Acting as if Blend had just said it was really dark out, Nitram replied, “Is there light inside the ritual? Shylent should be fine once we get there. She’s dressed like a druas now.” The ranger gave a frustrated look at the elven wizard. He grabbed his pack off the griffon and slung the sleeping barbarian over his shoulder. Drawing his greatsword, he asked “I’m assuming this will be mostly melee? Let’s go.”

AFCop AFCop April 23, 2014
“Shadows can move through walls and are unhindered by terrain. Even if we were not burdened by a sleeping companion, you could not outrun them. The ranger might and the wizard certainly could considering he can fly. I am not worried about myself. However, I would assume that leaving anyone behind is not an option.”

ProfessorHill ProfessorHill April 23, 2014
Aeron agreed. “Count me in. Creating an army of free spirited shadows would decimate the borderland and create a weakness Spider Bramble could exploit to invade Aelvinwode.” Aeron warned the companions, “Creating powerful undead is more difficult than just commanding them…and creating an army of them is a work of very powerful realms magic. We must focus our attacks on the wizard leading the ritual to disrupt the summoning”

AFCop AFCop April 23, 2014
“Eight druas swordsman topside, travelling in pairs. two guarding the steps down were the ritual is taking place. Three to four voices chanting, plus two more perhaps dragging the victims. Only source of light is a bluish purple glow from downstairs. Dim light at best. Perhaps the wizard can take out the fodder and create a distraction. I can sneak into the basement undetected and strike at the leader of the ritual.”

mmartin_10 mmartin_10 April 23, 2014
“Sorry for the confusion. I agree. No one should be left behind. I meant Shylent would be fine outside the fight once we got there. As far as a distraction goes, I’m sure we can think of something to get you past the first level. How many ways into the eight topside druas?” A shrieking griffon should entice them to move, or a crossfire of arrows.

the_app the_app April 23, 2014
“If light is needed, I can bring about wisp like objects that will move at my command to where there are needed most – within reason of course.”

SkidAce SkidAce April 24, 2014
The group moved cautiously towards the ruined building that Blend had scouted. They must have taken action quickly enough to keep the fact that some of the druas sentries were “missing” from being noticed.

Blend indicated the vantage point up on the slumped debris wall that he had scouted from. The area was dimly lit from a purplish glow coming over the edge of the crumbling walls.

It seemed unwise to Nitram to attempt to climb up to Blend’s scouting perch, so he looked around for a place to stash Shylent.

Serre was beginning to make a hissing noise and becoming more agitated as the minutes passed.

The group continued on to the ruined building. As they approached they could tell that most of the roof was missing, and the debris was stacked against the outer walls of a cathedral style building. Climbing cautiously up the debris wall, everyone was able to look over and down into the building. The large open room was dark and the sound of chanting filled the air. Chanting, along with a purplish blue glow that emanated from a hole in the floor. The entire western half of the first floor had crumbled down into what looked like a basement. With the remaining half of the first floor in the way, no one could see the eastern half of the basement, where the chanting and light came from.

The eastern half of the first floor was being patrolled by eight druas swordsman, who walked about in pairs, and were all in sight of each other.

The western basement that Blend could see was filled with church pews and debris. Just before the floor cut off his line of sight, Blend could see two more druas standing guard, facing the stairway of rubble that seemed to be the only way down. This close the chanting seemed to be coming from the voices of three to perhaps four people.

“A map will be posted tomorrow, feel free to prepare IC”

SkidAce SkidAce April 24, 2014
Druas_Cathedral_Ruins_01.png

mmartin_10 mmartin_10 April 24, 2014
Can we get to the basement by circling around to the NW and entering the stairs from H/I-5? It looks like we can engage the basement without going through the main floor. Even arrows from H/I or N/O/P should be able to attack both top and bottom. Is that right?

SkidAce SkidAce April 24, 2014
There is nothing physically stopping you from proceeding to H/I 5. and arrows would reach the entire top floor. About a third of the basement (eastern third) would still be obscured and not susceptible to line of sight or arrow fire.

ProfessorHill ProfessorHill April 24, 2014
Aeron whispered to the party, “I will bend time in our favor and then move to the west side of the ruins (P5). From there if one of you move to the small entrance on the southern wall (AB19) the druas will concentrate to repell your attack and I will engulf them in a ball of fire.”

the_app the_app April 24, 2014
Rumil, a bit perplexed on how to best enter the basement, awaits the groups decision on where he can best serve the party. As Aeron mentions fireball, Rumil does offer “Shall I grease the floor at the same location, adding a bit of oomph to the mix?” (considers Greasing the 10×10 block at AB-AC 20-21 if the party does consider using a lure to get them all to pile out of that entrance)

mmartin_10 mmartin_10 April 25, 2014
Nitram nodded, “That might work. I’ll move to the southern entrance. Rumil, take Shylent around the west side of the building – just past the rocks. Once you are both set, let me know and I’ll move to engage them. Be prepared for them to all scatter out the nearest exits in order to surround and overwhelm me. Once I start, I’ll see if Serre can take to the air and attack from above, hopefully preventing them from moving to engage you around the north. It might be better if you used your bow to attack the two in the basement, freeing Blend to move as he can.” Nitram thought for a moment. “It may be better if I move into the doorway and attempt to entangle the 4 on the north side of the room. Rumil can grease the two in the southwest and you, Aeron, can take out the two in the basement. I’ll start with a sword, but can switch to the bow if everything works out.”

the_app the_app April 25, 2014
“Nitram – while I like the idea, I am afraid the distances you speak of are far too great to cover with the magic I possess. In order to grease the southernmost druas, I would need to be within 30ft – which is far closer than the western wall. I could stay close to you and assist in peppering the druas that come out at you – moving inside the structure once you have secured it and firing down, if appropriate. The problem would be where to stash our sleeping barbarian and how to keep her protected while on the move.” Rumil looks to the group, hoping to avoid spreading out the group too thin and leaving any one member vulnerable to ambush.

ProfessorHill ProfessorHill April 25, 2014
Aeron whispered to Lord Nitram to consider entangling the large southeast gap in the southern wall to funnel the druas together through the small opening.

mmartin_10 mmartin_10 April 25, 2014
Nitram replied, “I’m not especially concerned if they come out either of the southern gaps. I just don’t want them going out the north and circling around to attack you two.”

mmartin_10 mmartin_10 April 25, 2014
Nitram addressed Rumil, “No, stay near Aeron to the west and keep Shylent safe.”

SkidAce SkidAce April 25, 2014
Based on your inputs, here is the setup. I have not rolled any stealths yet, this is just to confirm starting postions. Provide feedback, and when I return Sunday I will update and initiate.

Druas_Cathedral_Ruins_01a.png

ProfessorHill ProfessorHill April 27, 2014
Before Aeron Hastes the party he will cast Extended Gravity Bow, Cats Grace, and Ricochet Shot.

AFCop AFCop April 27, 2014
How far is the drop from where Blend is? Can he see the ritual? Bottom line is he wants to be able to approach from the side with the most cover to hide so he can save his invisibility until the last moment.

SkidAce SkidAce April 28, 2014
The exterior walls surrounding the first floor are 20 feet high. So from the top of the wall where Blend is to the first floor is a 20 foot drop. From the first floor to the basement floor is also 20 feet. So a drop from the top of the wall to the floor of the basement would be 40 feet. However, Z 6-8, is a pile of rubble remnants of the first floor and provide a climbable slope. difficult terrain. They are twenty feet below Blend.

If I was trying to sneak in there, I would either A, climb down at z7 and sneak along the wall, or B, drop down from the first floor at w6, hide in the rocks and assess the situation. You cant see the ritual, the floor is in the way.

SkidAce SkidAce April 29, 2014
After being hasted with the rest of the group, Blend went up and over the wall, using the rubble of the collapsed floor to creep down to the basement level and move quietly along the wall. Z18

The two druas sentries apparantly didn’t notice Blend sneaking along the wall, and from his vantage point, blend could now see most of the basement.

The basement had the appearance of having once been a large cathedral for the worship of either the Old Faith or Pantheism, but was now subverted to an evil cause. The flickering purple glow emmantated from a large black pearl that was set on an altar of some type. Two more druas stood sentry, and assisted the leader of the ritual with the chanting and the placing of the next victim on the wooden sacrificial slabs. Bound victims lay lined up on the floor on either side, awaiting their turn. The leader of the ritual was an individual that Blend recognized, it was the druas with the jade quarterstaff that he had encountered before.

Behind the leader, was a black yawning portal that led to nowhere and was filled with an inky darkness. The leader had just slain another victim, who gave out a soul chilling wail. The body crumbled limply, and a pale ghostly form flowed out of the corpse and over to the purple glowing sphere. Once the spirit entered the sphere, a black streak flowed out of the inky portal and into the pearl. From the pearl the spirit of the slain victim rose again, this time transformed into a hideous shadow. From the portal came a voice “Send me another soul Angerthas, quickly” Angerthas (the leader) and the two druas with him began chanting again, as the two went to get another victim.

AFCop AFCop April 29, 2014
Blend whispered to Aeron using his magic spell. “Two sentries, two shadows, one evil priest with a jade staff and a black portal down here. I’ll need help soon. Start the attack and I’ll try and take out the priest.”

SkidAce SkidAce April 29, 2014
(The order doesn’t matter as much with the surprise action, however, Rumil and Aeron are on the deck, Also, if you go into the covered basement section, use that map’s grid, if you are outside, use that map’s grid. Too much work to make them line up exactly.)

the_app the_app April 29, 2014
(So, since either Rumil and/or me misunderstood what the hell Nitram and/or matty were doing, can you make a call whether I am standing down below with nothing to do or standing up near Aeron – where Rumil would have moved after greasing…but now that is not a feasible action – ready to fire? If Rumil is where he is currently on map – then he will move to next point…which I think is my only move, since it is running fast. If, however, Rumil is smarter than me and understood Nitram…)

Rumil, realizing that he was prepared to fire before Nitram was even engaged, held his shot on the first elf he could spot. As soon as he sees Nitram engage and the druas move to intercept, he will loose his arrows. (If Rumil can’t see a single druas due to range and/or darkness, he will instead cast Dancing Lights 120 ft from himself and spaced out 10 ft from one another – and move them around until he spots a target…these take the form of wisps, not lanterns)

SkidAce SkidAce April 29, 2014
(You can be up by Aeron, tell me what grid and take your surprise action (move or standard) and I will update the map accordingly.)

ProfessorHill ProfessorHill April 29, 2014
Using Merchant Blend’s description of the basement, Aeron rolled a ball of bat guano and chanted some arcane words. The pungent smell of ammonia assaulted his nostrils as the pea sized ball smoldered to life and flew through the collapsed floor toward the priest with the jade staff (centered on bottom left corner of Q27).
Aeron quickly fired off a couple quick shots at the exposed druas guards and ducked back behind the wall. Fireball at Q27 6d6 dmg ST vs DC21, two Hasted/Cats Grace/bow shots at + 8 / + 8, 2d8 + 4 dmg, Crit x3(19-20), 3 ricochet shots, 2 Arrow Eruption if kills)

SkidAce SkidAce April 30, 2014
(there is no line of effect to Q27 because of the roof of the first floor, but since that’s hard to tell from the description, I’ll allow q23 as the center and will update in the morning if that’s acceptable.)

the_app the_app April 30, 2014
Starting at Q5 then – which will allow for some cover and ability to hopefully pop out and fire — this of course all depends on whether I can see the druas on the top floor or if it is too dark. Since you haven’t said too dark, I can only assume I see the top druas – and it isn’t just from “intel” from Gweed)

Rumil, not wanting to tip off the druas too early, held his attack, attempting to steady his breathing in order to make the shot. He was good with the bow, having spent many hours over many years on the target range, but he was no expert. He hoped his shots would aid his newfound team’s efforts – but this sensation which allowed him to move faster than normal was a bit hard to get used to. Quickly praying to his god – Rumil prepares to fire… “Corellon, guide my hands that I may aid in stopping this dark, soul torturing act and set my dark brothers free…granting mercy, where they have none.” (Hold action until Nitram steps into the picture and casts entangle – whereupon I will fire at the first druas to move his direction – twice based off Haste, if I am reading this correctly – adding Arcane Strike to bow before letting go. Not sure how I can take further actions – casting for instance – if I fire twice, but maybe I’m misreading spell. If I can take additional action, will cast "Dancing Lights in center of upper floor area – centered on Q26…10×10 effect, wisp like lights)

mmartin_10 mmartin_10 April 30, 2014
As Nitram moved into position, he grasped the talisman Aeron had given him, gently rubbing it between his fingers while praying to Rillifane under his breath. “Rillifane, protect me. Shield me from my enemies attacks, that I might live to serve you longer.” He could feel the skin on his fingers seem to dry out and harden. as he continued to rub the talisman, he noticed that he hadn’t lost any dexterity from the effect, which was now spreading from his hand up his arm and across his body. As he silently approached the wall, he glanced at his hand and noticed a darker tint to his normally tanned skin. Drawing his greatsword, he stepped into the doorway, aware of his companion moving behind him. Calling on Rillifane’s grace once more, he habitually reached out his hand toward the far side of the room. “My lord Rillifane, feed the earth with your will and grace. Bring forth the plants to do your work.” He could feel the presence of his patron – a connection to the life force of the vines and brambles on the far side of the structure. He watched as the area cast entangle, 44’ radius centered on top left of K26 burst into plant life. Smiling, he focused his attention on the two druas in front of him, as Serre leapt silently into the air. Serre isn’t actually moving yet, planning on pouncing on something next turn. I didn’t think he could do it this turn since it needed a full attack.

SkidAce SkidAce April 30, 2014
(I centered the fireball lower left of Q24 to meet Aeron’s intent of getting the priest, since it was close enough I erred on the side of the player’s)

There was a loud “FWOOSH BOOM” as Aeron’s expertly aimed fireball flew just under the leading edge of the first floor and entered the basement, impacting with a flash of flame that momentarily outshone the purple glow. There were momentary shrieks of intense pain as Blend saw the two druas assistants go up in pillars of flame. (Fireball 22 damage)

Angerthas (the druas wizard/priest) recoiled from the explosion but did not totally escape the flame’s embrace. (Fireball 11 damage)

Aeron ducked back behind the wall and prepared to quickly loose several arrows at the exposed druas warriors.

SkidAce SkidAce April 30, 2014
The druas were not used to the vines and thorns of the area being used against them. The druas at the back side of the ruined cathedral struggled uselessly as the vines and plants filled the area. One of the druas near the boulders, manage to evade the vines for now, while another druas to the left found himself barely out of the grasping plants reach.

As Nitram prepared to engage the warriors in front of him, an arrow came arcing out of the dim light from the left and pierced the side of one of the druas, who crumbled to the ground in pain, gasping slightly as he fell.

Aeron’s shadow moved eagerly into the fray.

SkidAce SkidAce April 30, 2014
Alas, the druas (I19) who thought he had been just outside of the reach of the plants and vines was horrified to discover that the insidious plants were more than capable of entangling him as he was drawn helpless into their grasp. “No no, not again” he was heard to scream.

Druas_Cathedral_Ruins_01b.png

SkidAce SkidAce April 30, 2014
Blend moved cautiously around the edge of the walls where a few shadows could be found, moving quietly and fading from view as he went. (Stealth 30)

ProfessorHill ProfessorHill April 30, 2014
Aeron whispered to Rumil. “Light this temple of shadow and I will clear a path to the dark elf priest.” Aeron commanded his shadow to attack the evil priest presiding over the dark ritual. Aeron then released a salvo of arrows at the guarding druas (Alternating shots at the guards. Full attack: + 10/+ 10/ + 10 to Hit – 3 for drained strength Crit x3 (19-20), the first 2 hits ricochet to the other guard (using BAB + 3 to Hit)…if one is slain by a non-ricochet arrow then 2 arrows erupt next round (+ 10 to Hit)).

mmartin_10 mmartin_10 May 01, 2014
A shape materialized out of the darkness of the sky, a shriek emanating from the darkened form just before it landed on an unsuspecting druas. Can Serre “pounce” to V31 and attack both druas (assuming one is defeated by early attacks? This is my preferred action (rake x2 on V32 to satisfy the pounce/full-attack/rake requirement, if he’s still up, talons, then hasted bites). If he can’t attack both, then “pounce” on V32 druas from V33.

AFCop AFCop May 01, 2014
Blend wants to be 5 feet away from the priest so he can take a 5 foot step and full attack next round.

SkidAce SkidAce May 01, 2014
(Copy, due to darkvison druas, I will assume invis and update map this afternoon to put you one square south of him.)

the_app the_app May 01, 2014
Rumil shouts in elven “The evil that you attempt to unleash on the forest shall not come to pass. Corellon forbids it. I do not judge you my brothers…I merely release you!” (cast Dancing Lights at O24/25 – P24/25) Rumil then responds to Aeron “Call out directions, should the lights need to move…”

SkidAce SkidAce May 01, 2014
Those individuals with a line of sight into the basement (Blend for now) see the eerie source of the glow, a pulsating orb that Blend saw “pull” the soul of a victim and disgorge a shadow. and behind it an inky blackness leading nowhere.

Kell_Altar_Evil_Portal.png

SkidAce SkidAce May 01, 2014
Rumil’s lights shone like torches in the center of the battlefield , illuminating the center of the area for the humans, and most of the first floor for those with elven blood. (No miss % if within 40 feet of a light)

The flat footed guards had no clue what was going on as fireballs erupted behind them and arrows flew from the surrounding walls. Aeron’s first arrow hit the northernmost druas in the shoulder blade (Att 16, dam 3). The second arrow just missed (Att 9) the southern guard, who was counting his blessings when the ricochet shot from Aeron’s first arrow caught him in the throat, killing him. (Att 15, dam 8)

Aeron’s final arrow found the weakness in the first druas’ armor, and buried itself deep into his lungs, slaying him. (Att 24, dam 10)

Serre pounced upon the unsuspecting druas, knocking him over and raking with both rear claws as he trampled the unfortunate warrior. (Att 22 12, dam 6) His foe, although grievously wounded, was still struggling so Serre slashed open the helpless druas’ chest with one of his razor sharp talons. (Att 13, dam 6)

Serre hissed and turned quickly upon the still stunned partner of the druas he had just slain, slashing out with a talon and twice with his beak, ripping into and killing his foe. (Att 14 18 22, dam 12)

Aeron’s shadow disappeared into the purplish haze and out of sight underneath the overhanging first floor.

Those on the first floor saw one of the druas break free of the entangling vines and dash towards the rubble stairs.

Blend saw Aeron’s shadow show up near the glowing orb as it traveled towards the priest, but the other two shadows gave no indication that they had seen anything unusual from their point of view yet.

mmartin_10 mmartin_10 May 01, 2014
Nitram whispered to the elven archers, “Rumil, Aeron. It looks like one of the guards is moving towards you along the north wall in the rubble.” He thought to himself that it would be nice to see a little better. “My little sprite friend. Any chance you can light up the area a little more?” Can/will the pixie cast light on the big tree near us?

AFCop AFCop May 01, 2014
Blend stepped up next to the dark priest, felt the surge of Aeron’s spell granting coursing through him and combined it with his own inner focus. His blade criss-crossed in front of him three times in rapid succession, hoping to fell this creature who called him self Angerthas.

Flurry, SA, 3 attacks, + 3 total to hit (haste, invisible) vs. FF AC, first attack will be a stunning fist, if Angerthas is still alive, and Blend thinks he is almost dead, he will spend a ki point for an additional attack, otherwise Blend will use a swift action to immediately disappear again.

SkidAce SkidAce May 02, 2014
Nitram felt a small twinge of encouragement and determination from the amulet on his chest. The little sprite flew out quickly towards the tree that Nitram had indicated, but faltered when she approached the remaining druas warrior. Ducking to the floor, she touched a stone which blossomed with light like a torch and then darted back towards Nitram and her amulet.

The first blade to strike Angerthas seemed to stun the already flat-footed druas. The ritual leader dropped his jade staff and began to stumble back. The second and third strike cut deeply across his chest, and he fell to the ground, apparently dead. (Att 25 31 26, damage 55, stunned)

The shadows to Blend’s right stirred restlessly, looking at Blend with hungry eyes.

Not realizing the decimation and carnage that was occurring elsewhere, the druas in front of Nitram raised his rapier and moved quickly forward to strike at the intruder. His blade was easily deflected by Nitram’s blade. (Att 14)

mmartin_10 mmartin_10 May 02, 2014
Nitram smiled, comforted by the sprite’s willingness to help. “Thank you, my friend. That’s quite helpful.” The ranger then recalled his training with the elven swordmaster and proceeded to attack the dark elf. Ideally, I’d like to attack as a standard action (vital strike: I think it should be + 11, 4d6 + 7 with the strength penalty and haste bonus), then full move to O19, sheathing greatsword and readying bow. If the druas isn’t dropped with the single attack, can Nitram continue to use his full attack (2 more attacks), then move 5’ forward (assuming the elf is dead by then)?

AFCop AFCop May 02, 2014
You can attack and then move up to 60 feet. Sheathing your sword is a move action and you would have to drop it, which is a free action. You can take a five foot step after making a full attack action. You can take a five foot step between multiple attacks in a full attack action, but only one.

mmartin_10 mmartin_10 May 02, 2014
isn’t sheathing sword a “free” action when combined with a move action and a BAB of + 1 or higher? Since I’m moving twice, I should have enough time to both sheath the sword and ready my bow. I just wasn’t sure about the graduated standard attack to a full if the enemy doesn’t fall.

AFCop AFCop May 02, 2014
No. Drawing a weapon is a free action when combined with a move and a +1 BAB.

SkidAce SkidAce May 03, 2014
(So unless I hear otherwise, in the morning I will update thusly: Attack druas with sword, if killed move to 019, if you draw your bow as part of your move, you would have dropped your sword. If druas not killed, use full atack then five foot step forward.)

SkidAce SkidAce May 03, 2014
Nitram’s slashing attack with the dragon etched greatsword nearly gutted the haplas druas warrior. The druas slowly crumpled over her massive stomach wound and fell to the ground dead. (single attack vital strike, Att 14, dam 20)

The two druas at the back of Nitram’s entangle spell managed to work their way free from the vines and plants and moved cautiously northward into the darkness. The sole remaining druas in the area of the plants remained stuck and continued to struggle futilely.

the_app the_app May 03, 2014
Rumil watches two of his darker kin slink off to the north, but realizes there is still an immediate threat far too close to him and Aeron. He first directs his lights to move northwest (centered on K-L17/18). He then trains his arrows on the closest druas (full attack, unless first drops, then refocus on remaining visible druas – if possible)

SkidAce SkidAce May 04, 2014
Rumil’s arrow sped towards the unsuspecting druas, who til now had only noticed Aeron. The slightly off target arrow shattered against the wall behind him, causing him to flinch slightly. The second arrow fired by Rumil caught the swordsman in the shoulder and inflicted a severe wound upon him.

mmartin_10 mmartin_10 May 04, 2014
“Serre! stop the ones escaping to the north,” yelled the ranger as he moved through the broken building. Serre acknowledged with a short, shrill shriek and then leapt into the air. Serre will fly to I24 – 80’. If he spots either of the two druas that left (with his darkvision) he will pursue and pounce if able. If he doesn’’t spot them, he’ll turn and pounce on the remaining entangled druas in I19, landing in I18 (30’).

ProfessorHill ProfessorHill May 04, 2014
Aeron watched as four arrows erupted from the fallen druas guards and sped toward the druas climbing the crumbling stairway. Aeron took aim with his bow at the same dark elf and cut him down with a never ending stream of arrows. Aeronautics then turned the stream of arrows on the druas entangled in the vines on the main floor.

SkidAce SkidAce May 04, 2014
The unfortunate druas on the staircase never knew what hit him as the arrows turned him into a elven pincusion. Both of Aeron’s arrows also hit the entangled druas (Att 19, 16, dam 11) killing him outright.

Serre flew over the wall of the ruined building and under the low lying trees. From that direction could be heard large hissing screeches and cries of pain.

Blend could tell the shadows were staring at him, but they didn’t seem inclined to move. Things were quiet in the basement…a little too quiet.

AFCop AFCop May 04, 2014
Blend made sure the priest was dead…permanently. He then began to see if there were survivors among the prisoners.

SkidAce SkidAce May 04, 2014
Blend had heard the standard legendary tales of people coming back from the dead. But from his experience, and those of his mentor’s, it appeared that most of those tales were based on people that were “mostly” dead.

And some of Blend’s mentors had recommendations on how to thwart such returns. Two methods were the most common, a direct stab and twist to ensure that the heart was in two pieces, and or a similar stab to the back of the neck to sever the spine.

the_app the_app May 04, 2014
Rumil surveyed the topside area to ensure no additional immediate targets were visible. Once he was confident that it was secure, he moved the lights to the lower level and trained his sights down – waiting for a sign that either Blend had completed his mission or the priest was still chanting. “Corellon, grant these souls your divine mercy.” Rumil began to wonder if his elders knew of the perils they had sent him to face. Defenders spoke of many great evils in the world – but as elves were wont to do – most stories were of great exploits and enemies dispatched with a single strike. Perhaps one day he too would be able to look back at this part of his life and create a story worthy of the legends…

mmartin_10 mmartin_10 May 04, 2014
“I’m going after Serre – to the north,” the ranger whispered to the group. “Let me know if you need help, but it sounds pretty quiet.” Nitram moved to the opening on the northern wall, wishing again for more light. “Pixie friend. Can you provide some more light, maybe on this arrow.” The ranger drew an arrow from his quiver and brought it to the bow as he moved. If Nitram sees any druas to the north, he’ll fire the lighted arrow at them (w/ vital strike and a -2 to hit due to the reduced strength and composite LB). If the sprite won’t light the arrow, he’ll ask the mages to move the lights north to the opening.

AFCop AFCop May 05, 2014
“Aeron, you need to get down here quickly. There is something that requires your expertise,” whispered Blend.

ProfessorHill ProfessorHill May 05, 2014
Aeron descended the crumbling staircase to examine the incomplete ritual site. “Acolyte Rumil, This will need your assistance.” Arcane Knowledge to determine why the portal didn’t close with the Druids death and how to close it.

the_app the_app May 05, 2014
Rumil, not knowing where Nitram was headed, hoped that he and his companion would be okay. He turned towards Aeron, descending the stairs to the basement, when beckoned. “I’m not sure why he believes me to be a mage acolyte…I have no books, I study no spells…” Scanning the area one last time to ensure no druas were missed, lurking in the darkness, Rumil responded “I understand.” As he descends the stairs and the basement comes into view, Rumil draws upon his training to make sense of the strange scene unfolding before him (Knowledge Arcane and Religion, boosted with Detect Magic if believed to aid in determining what is important and what is only show)

mmartin_10 mmartin_10 May 05, 2014
might as well get a + 2 from aid another; not sure which mage has the better skill bonus (I’m guessing the higher leveled Aeron)

SkidAce SkidAce May 05, 2014
Nitram’s arrow began to glow in response to his request. As he approached the area north of the ruined building, he saw Serre calmly standing there over the bodies of the two fleeing druas. Serre didnt seem to be harmed, clearly the druas had not put up much of a fight.

Blend’s survey of the remaining prisoner’s determined that all five of them remained alive. Most of them seemed to be slowly recovering from the effects of the druas poison. Blend recognized one of the prisoners as Servantes, although he remained in a deep slumber. One of the more active prisoners was a bruteman that Blend did not recognize, but who was wearing the leather armor of the mercenary company. As the bruteman shook off his lethargy, he snapped his remaining bonds and stepped quickly up to Blend, got down on his knees, and touched his forehead to the floor stating “Cragthor owe life, serve til paid.”

Blend noticed the shadows slip into the portal and disappear into the inky blackness.

Shadows of the Mercenary Part 6

Unconquered Kingdoms SkidAce