Scales of War: Throne of the Stone-Skinned King.   Posted by Mittens.Group: 0
Kyle
 player, 1289 posts
 Crossbow of SCIENCE...
 Or MAGIC? I always forget
Mon 14 Mar 2016
at 04:18
Scales of War: Throne of the Stone-Skinned King
  "If things follow the usual pattern, we shall at some point need to steal Zetch'r'r's scepter." Quite possibly in the process of killing him to get it anyways.
Mittens
 GM, 1875 posts
Mon 14 Mar 2016
at 05:07
Scales of War: Throne of the Stone-Skinned King
"Kinda figured fighting Zechy to be a forgone conclusion," Mits answers, "Though at this point, I'd be disappointed if I was denied the chance to curb-stomp the jerkface responsible for the late unpleasantness in our world."

Once back in the city, the characters can lay low
at the Morningstar Inn. Rhapsody has enough hideyholes to allow the entire party to disappear for as
long as they need.

Shortly after the characters return to the
city (after they’ve had a chance to take an extended
rest), Vlaakith calls the Separatists’ leaders to a meeting. The PCs, representing the Coalition, can bargain
with the leadership to forge an alliance and convince
them to withdraw from Tiamat’s unholy war.

A Turning poinT
encounter Level 21 (16,000 XP)
Setup
The moment for which the adventures have long
fought is at hand. Vlaakith and her lieutenants are
open to discussion about withdrawing the githyanki
from the war and might be convinced to give their aid
in the ongoing struggle.
A Turning Point Level 21
Skill Challenge XP 16,000
The room hums as the gathered assembly awaits your words.
In their cold faces, you see everything from blank stares, to
suspicion, to open hatred. Vlaakith stands and the room quiets.
“These visitors have come a long way and have endured many
hardships. Let us hear their words to seek an accord between
our peoples.”

Although the githyanki want nothing to do with Tiamat’s
war, they are not allies yet. To get the githyanki to withdraw
fully from the war, the characters must make a bargain all
can live with.
Complexity
5 (12 successes before 3 failures).
Primary Skills
Diplomacy, History, Insight, Intimidate, Religion, Streetwise.
Other Skills
Bluff.
Victory
Vlaakith agrees to withdraw the githyanki from the war
provided the characters successfully defeat Zetch’r’r.
Vlaakith also grants the PCs’ world a reprieve from githyanki
attacks for a thousand years (though this applies only to
those githyanki under Vlaakith’s command; she doesn’t
mention this). Finally, if the characters acquire no failures
in the course of the skill challenge, Vlaakith agrees to a
short-term alliance between her people and those of the
adventurers. Such an alliance proves beneficial to the PCs in
a future Scales of War adventure.

Defeat
Vlaakith agrees to withdraw the githyanki from the war but
only with the following conditions. The adventurers must
kill Zetch’r’r, and they must find and destroy the remains of
Vlaakith CLVII.
Special
If Mayhem is present for the negotiations, he can speak
on the characters behalf, assuming the characters have
performed and treated him well. At any point during the
negotiation, the PCs can convert one failed check into a
successful check.
If the PCs rescued Vlaakith and freed her without question,
the characters gain a +2 bonus to all Diplomacy checks. This
bonus increases to +4 if the PCs saved her after dealing with
the Emperor.
Bluff (DC 27)
The PCs make promises or offers they cannot actually follow
through on or have no intention to uphold.
Characters can cooperate to aid a lead character using this
skill.
Diplomacy 1 (DC 22; 2 successes)
The PCs describe their predicament, what they know of
Tiamat’s intent, and what will result if she is victorious.
Characters can cooperate to aid a lead character using this
skill. Achieving 2 successes opens up Diplomacy 2.
Diplomacy 2 (DC 22; 2 successes maximum; requires Diplomacy 1 to unlock)
The PCs explain that through their alliance with Tiamat, the
githyanki have become embroiled in a divine war not of their
making and they are taking a hand in the fate of the gods.
Achieving 2 successes opens up Diplomacy 3.
Diplomacy 3 (DC 27; 2 successes maximum; requires Diplomacy 2 or Streetwise to unlock)
The PCs announce that Tiamat has violated the ancient pact
and thus the githyanki are no longer bound by its terms. One
githyanki asks that if this is true, where is Gith?
Characters can cooperate to aid a lead character using this
skill. The first success here opens up Insight. The second
success opens up Diplomacy 4.
Diplomacy 4 (DC 22; 4 successes maximum; requires Diplomacy 3 to unlock)
The PCs ask for an alliance.
Characters can cooperate to aid a lead character using this
skill. On the first success, Vlaakith says that even if they
agreed, their alliance would be worthless while Zetch’r’r is
still in power. This opens up Diplomacy 5. On a failed check,
the characters cannot make this check again until they
succeed on another check related to the skill challenge.
Diplomacy 5
The PCs volunteer to destroy Zetch’r’r and end his reign.
Characters can cooperate to aid a lead character using this
skill.
History (DC 14; 1 success maximum; requires Diplomacy 4 to
unlock)
A character recalls the terms of the ancient pact, remembering
that Gith demanded the githyanki be free to rule their own
destiny.
DC 27 (1 success, 2 maximum)
Insight (DC 22; 1 success maximum; requires Diplomacy 3 to
unlock)
The PCs notice Vlaakith flinches when they mention the pact
has been violated.
Characters can cooperate to aid a lead character using this
skill. A success here also opens up Intimidate.
Intimidate (DC 27)
The PCs paint a pretty bleak picture about what is in store for
the githyanki if they don’t withdraw from the war, suggesting
that they will be destroyed if they lose or become subservient to
Tiamat if they win.
Characters can cooperate to aid a lead character using this
skill.
Religion 1 (DC 22 (1 success maximum))
A character describes Tiamat’s notoriety and her long history
of betrayals by citing key moments where she has acted in the
world. This bleak portrait calls into question the strength of the
githyanki alliance with the Dark Lady.
Success opens up Religion 2.
Religion 2 (DC 22; 1 success maximum; requires Religion 1 or
Streetwise to unlock)
A PC reminds the githyanki that no god has ever ruled the
githyanki peoples.
Streetwise (DC 14; 2 successes maximum)
A character cites an example of how Tiamat actually controls
the city, and also how Zetch’r’r serves Tiamat directly.
The first success also opens up the Religion 2 check. The
second success opens up Diplomacy 3.
Timothius
 GM, 851 posts
Mon 14 Mar 2016
at 05:33
Scales of War: Throne of the Stone-Skinned King
Timothius says, "The proposal is that we unite -The githyanki and the coalition- against Zetch'r'r. He works directly for Tiamat, who has a long history of betraying her "allies", and has been pushing you all to fight dwarves, humans, and the like. Has a single Mind Flayer come up in this new war yet? Just curious."

As is usual for such meetings, May and Raichel are quiet.


Tim Diplomacy will auto-succeed the first four diplomacy checks.
Tim Insight will auto-succeed, but isn't needed since Vlaakith specifically asked us not to mention who she is.
Tim Religion: 30 total. Success.

Kyle
 player, 1290 posts
 Crossbow of SCIENCE...
 Or MAGIC? I always forget
Mon 14 Mar 2016
at 05:41
Scales of War: Throne of the Stone-Skinned King
  "Before any of this, Gith wanted you to rule yourselves.  Taking orders from a God goes against that, even before considering Tiamat's reputation.  We are here ourselves because an increasing number of invaders want to take out home, and Zetch’r’r is just the latest we will need to explain, violently, how that never works out for anyone. No matter how many proxies they hides behind."
Mittens
 GM, 1876 posts
Mon 14 Mar 2016
at 06:11
Scales of War: Throne of the Stone-Skinned King
The leaders are already looking convinced.

"None that I've heard of," Gharvag answers Timothius.

Kada'ne is keeping quiet for the time being.

"Speaking of said reputation..."

Mits aims for intimidation and shows off her painting.  She then begins to focus heavily on how both previous exarchs of Tiamat, and very likely this third one, were big on mind controlling puppet leaders with the rest of the minions enslaved.

"Sounds a lot like Illithid shenanigans to me.  Speaking of whom, what do you suppose they have been doing while this whole invasion has been going on?  Taking a vacation?  No!  They've been plotting and scheming!"

8/12 successes.
Timothius
 GM, 852 posts
Mon 14 Mar 2016
at 06:24
Scales of War: Throne of the Stone-Skinned King
Timothius says, "Very good points, Kyle and Mittens."

He takes a deep breath and says, "Vlaakith herself can attest to the fact that I am a personal admirer of Gith and what she stood for... and still stands for. I am not a githyanki and those of you thinking I could never understand what that means, you are right, of course. But I understand hatred for slavers and I understand what it means to be willing to sacrifice everything for your people. I have no hatred for your people; Only for Zetch'r'r and those who wish to bow before Tiamat's whims. My allies and I are going to do our part, but you all have vital roles to play as I am sure Vlaakith has said to you herself. United, we will achieve all our goals. If we are divided, Tiamat will win and all of the people in this room will lose."

Raichel says, "When do we get to the part where we start punching our enemies in the face?" She figures there is no harm in empathizing with warriors on that particular point.


Tim actually-has-to-roll diplomacy checks: 37 and 29 respectively, succeeding the DC 27.
Oddly, the diplomacy DC returns to aut0-success 22 after that.

Kyle
 player, 1291 posts
 Crossbow of SCIENCE...
 Or MAGIC? I always forget
Mon 14 Mar 2016
at 06:36
Scales of War: Throne of the Stone-Skinned King
  "I would assume the greatest delay for punching our enemies in the face, would be if we had to do it to someone else's enemies first."  Or at least. That seems like the kind of delay that they would have compared to most.
Mittens
 GM, 1877 posts
Mon 14 Mar 2016
at 06:47
Scales of War: Throne of the Stone-Skinned King
"It might be worth noting that these heroes have made themselves very welcome within Citadel Mercane," Mayhem adds, "They have proven themselves time and again to be selfless paragons of honor and trustworthiness."

Vlaakith nods.  "It is decided.  We join forces.  While I rally the Resistance against the myriad strongholds of Tiamat throughout the city, these heroes will defeat their hated foe Zech'r'r once and for all."

Kada'ne bows.  "I have formulated a plan."

He begins to go over the details with the githyanki Separatist coalition.

Mayhem’s Exit
After the negotiation, Mayhem decides Tu’narath is
too dangerous a place to linger and chooses this time
to make his exit. He bids the characters farewell and
ducks out, vanishing into the city. Mayhem is unlikely
to return, but if the characters ever find themselves in
Citadel Mercane, they might have an ally or an enemy
there depending on how they treated him.

"Nice meet'n ya, Mayhem,"
Mits says with a smile and goodbye wave.
Timothius
 GM, 853 posts
Mon 14 Mar 2016
at 06:53
Scales of War: Throne of the Stone-Skinned King
Timothius offers a handshake. "Thank you for your help, Mayhem. When you hear of our victory, pray visit us in the prime material some time."

Raichel fist-bumps Mayhem. "Honored to have met you, Mayhem. Never let the enemy intimidate you to where you don't fight back; You are powerful and there is always a chance if you are just willing."

May arm-grasps Mayhem. "May you and your extremely cool name find success and peace wherever you go. Even if peace means kicking the butt of your enemies." She grins.

May and the kittens, of course, are more than happy to head for Zetch when directed to do so.
Kyle
 player, 1292 posts
 Crossbow of SCIENCE...
 Or MAGIC? I always forget
Wed 16 Mar 2016
at 04:04
Scales of War: Throne of the Stone-Skinned King
  Mayhem was one of the nicest rescue NPCs Kyle, or most adventuring parties, have ever met.  "I still need to get used to selfless being a term applied to me."  Kyle, 'not wanting everyone to die because that would be bad' is generally considered more than mere practicality.
Narrator
 player, 821 posts
 For narrating
 and convenience
Wed 16 Mar 2016
at 04:43
Scales of War: Throne of the Stone-Skinned King
Mayhem thanks the team for their well-wishes and heads off.

PArT five:
WAr for Tu’nArATh

Kada'ne slides the map over and addresses the heroes.

"The only thing
left for the you to do is to defeat Emperor
Zetchy. The emperor’s forces are spread across the
city, searching for Vlaakith, so you'll need only deal
with those left guarding Zetchy’s throne. While you attack the emperor’s palace, the Separatist leaders under Vlaakith’s command will spark the uprising,
leading strikes against Tiamat’s command centers
and destroying those who have betrayed them. The
Separatists are strong enough to fight for a time, but
they need to rouse the rest of the city to their cause,
something that can be achieved only by destroying
the emperor.

"The chaos and infighting wracking the city will cover
your approach to the bastion, so aside from a few
incidental encounters you may encounter, you should have
little trouble entering the
shattered remnants of the Queen’s District.

"You must pass through the Necropolis to reach the Chromatic Bastion. Fallen heroes
and notable githyanki were accorded the special
honor of being interred in vaults within sight of the
Palace of Whispers. Few, though, rested easy in their
tombs, and those cursed with unlife wander the
necropolis still."

"Why not use the Well to bypass the Necropolis?" Mits asks.

"I've never been beyond it.  The Well requires that you be able to picture the destination."

"Wow.  An Admiral and you've never been to the palace?"

Kada'ne.  "A very select few are chosen to go there.  And generally are never seen from again."
Timothius
 GM, 854 posts
Wed 16 Mar 2016
at 04:47
Scales of War: Throne of the Stone-Skinned King
May says, "Well let's go there, then."

Timothius asks, "Any chance Zetch will know of our coming if we fight through the necropolis?"
Kyle
 player, 1293 posts
 Crossbow of SCIENCE...
 Or MAGIC? I always forget
Wed 16 Mar 2016
at 04:53
Scales of War: Throne of the Stone-Skinned King
  Undead.  Well, at least Kyle can finally deal full+1d10 damage to insubstantial.  Sure he's only slightly stronger than a pacifist, but it's the thought that counts.

  "Considering the greatest honor given is to rise from your grave as fodder, it was likely best for your career at the time to have never gone."

OOC: Clearly the greatest damage the party did to the Well was not capturing it, but attaching fine print to it's usage.
Mittens
 GM, 1879 posts
Wed 16 Mar 2016
at 05:01
Scales of War: Throne of the Stone-Skinned King
Kada'ne nods.  "I'm counting on the fact that you all work with great speed once you get started.  So it won't really matter if he spots you at the Necropolis and calls back his troops.  By then, it will be too late for him.  You'll have defeated him and teleported back here long before reinforcements can arrive."

"Yup!  Anything else you can tell us about the palace?"


"Very little.  I've only seen it from a distance.  It has one main level, and a tower in the back that rises two stories above the roof of the first level."

Once the group is ready, they are whisked away to the Necropolis!
May
 player, 645 posts
Wed 16 Mar 2016
at 05:38
Scales of War: Throne of the Stone-Skinned King
Timothius looks about. "No choice but to go forward."

May nods and takes point. "Come on out and play, unrestful souls. We're here to help put you to rest."

Raichel keeps scythe ready to buff herself with.
Kyle
 player, 1294 posts
 Crossbow of SCIENCE...
 Or MAGIC? I always forget
Wed 16 Mar 2016
at 05:43
Scales of War: Throne of the Stone-Skinned King
Kyle checks his crossbow.  Yes, it's the Force one.  "A reputation for efficiency, more rare than all our other rumors combined."
Narrator
 player, 822 posts
 For narrating
 and convenience
Wed 16 Mar 2016
at 05:44
Scales of War: Throne of the Stone-Skinned King
When the PCs are about halfway to the Chromatic Bastion, read:
The path travels through a damaged area, with a yawning
fissure to one side and crumbling tombs and rubble to the
other. Black fire gutters up in columns on either side of
the road.


"Destroy the living!" a wight screams at it lurches forward!
Raichel
 player, 623 posts
 Lightning Reflexes
 50,000 volts worth
Wed 16 Mar 2016
at 06:39
Scales of War: Throne of the Stone-Skinned King
Raichel does her usual opening and goes feral before firing lightning that bounces around, hitting enemies the group can't even see yet!


Minor: Bloodfury Scythe (count as bloodied)
Minor: Razorclaw Shifting (+2 speed. +1 AC and Ref)
Standard: Furious Bolts v Wight1,2,3,WrathSpirit2,Wrath1.
 Hit(40)! Hit(40)! Hit(32)! Hit(38)! Miss(26)
 dmg1: 36+10 vuln +2 pelor = 48
 dmg2: 27+10 vuln +2 pelor = 39 (27/2=13 v Wrath2)


Wight 1 HP: 182 - 48 = 134
Wight 2 HP: 182 - 39 = 143
Wight 3 HP: 182 - 39 = 143
Wrath 2 HP: 111 - 13 = 98

This message was last edited by the player at 07:07, Wed 16 Mar 2016.

Narrator
 player, 823 posts
 For narrating
 and convenience
Wed 16 Mar 2016
at 06:50
Scales of War: Throne of the Stone-Skinned King
The wight shrieks an electrified scream as it convulses from the attack!  It snarls and rushes past Kyle to claw at Raichel, repairing some of the damage done to its flesh by draining her health!

WHAM!  Kyle spank!
Timothius
 GM, 855 posts
Wed 16 Mar 2016
at 07:03
Scales of War: Throne of the Stone-Skinned King
Timothius backs up a little and says, "We are here to put an end to Zetch'r'r, who is Tiamat's puppet. Tiamat has broken her pact with your people. By slowing us down, you help her continue to mislead and oppress your people."

Tim's words cut the wight deep as the truth hits his very soul.


Move: Shift 1 away from Wight
Standard: Break the Spirit v Wight 1. Hit(31)!
 dmg: 41


Wight 1 HP: 106 - 41 = 65

This message was last edited by the GM at 07:06, Wed 16 Mar 2016.

Narrator
 player, 824 posts
 For narrating
 and convenience
Wed 16 Mar 2016
at 07:33
Scales of War: Throne of the Stone-Skinned King
A wrathful spirit rises from the roof of one of the mausoleums and hovers over to the south.  With a shriek, it pulls it's own ghostly head off, ignites it, and throws it at the group!  The head explodes in dark energy!

"Enemies of death!  Die!"

Mits hugs herself, teeth chattering.  "Th-that was...  d-d-different."
Narrator
 player, 825 posts
 For narrating
 and convenience
Wed 16 Mar 2016
at 07:38
Scales of War: Throne of the Stone-Skinned King
Another wight charges Rai.  Mits swings and misses it as it rushes past her.  Rai's health is again drained, weakening her!
Kyle
 player, 1295 posts
 Crossbow of SCIENCE...
 Or MAGIC? I always forget
Thu 17 Mar 2016
at 04:11
Scales of War: Throne of the Stone-Skinned King
  Kyle keeps to the simple things for now, bringing the injured Wight that much closer to being finished off.

  Which would normally be an enemy possibly worth ignoring in favor of the intangible, if not for their surge drain.

Magic Weapon:  +1 Hit, +5 DMG rolls. To May, Mittens, Raichel.
Resistive for May: +1 AC, surge+10 THP on cash in, can share with an ally.

White 1 HP: 65-38= 27

May
 player, 646 posts
Thu 17 Mar 2016
at 04:18
Scales of War: Throne of the Stone-Skinned King
May hops deftly behind the wight that first attacked and whacks him hard enough to down him! She then looks at the other enemies. "Hey! Look on the bright side, restless people! At least you didn't wind up fuel for some airship of evil!"


Move/Minor: Move to flank with Rai against Wight 1
Standard: Weapon Mayster's Strike v Wight 1. Hit(43)!
 dmg: 27 (min dmg downs him thanks to Kyle!)


Wight 1 HP: 27 - 27 = RIP

Narrator
 player, 827 posts
 For narrating
 and convenience
Thu 17 Mar 2016
at 04:52
Scales of War: Throne of the Stone-Skinned King
The wight May destroyed explodes!  Bone bits and guts burning with necrotic energy gets splattered all around!  Another wrath spirit appears and repeats the exploding head attack!  Then a tormenting ghost appears and holds a hand out dramatically.

"The One in the Void calls to you!  Enter into his skin!"

It lets out a massive shriek that blasts back the heroes!  Raichel falls into the dead god's open wound, falling a long way before hitting bottom!

Another wight appears and starts munching on Timothius' leg to repair himself!