A Bard's Tale.   Posted by Narrator.Group: 0
Narrator
 player, 985 posts
 For narrating
 and convenience
Fri 9 Sep 2016
at 03:29
A Bard's Tale
Evening has fallen and people are preparing for the night. The shops are closing and the bars are opening. As is usual for settings such as this, the bars also double as inns. Soon, the fireplace at the bar has been lit and people are filling the place up. Most of them are locals looking to relax with a beer, while a few are traveling merchants or adventurers.
Grabthar
 Player, 2 posts
Fri 9 Sep 2016
at 03:32
A Bard's Tale
A half-orc adventurer walks into the bar.  Ow!  What sets this one apart from all the other half-orc adventurers is the monocle.

He takes a seat at the bar and puts coin on the counter top.  "Your finest wine if you would, good sir."
Joe
 player, 398 posts
Fri 9 Sep 2016
at 03:35
A Bard's Tale
  Joe's string pulling base profession is not nearly as artistic as the thread title's, but then his payments don't mostly rely on drunks throwing spare change either.
Narrator
 player, 986 posts
 For narrating
 and convenience
Fri 9 Sep 2016
at 03:41
A Bard's Tale
Speaking of, a little child elf with a violin heads over to the ministage and begins playing a beautiful, slow tune. Slow though it may be, it isn't sad so much as soothing in nature. But one of the merchants there says, "Don't let that one get to close. That there's a kender! He'll steal all your stuff before you can finish a conversation."

Chessnut smiles and shrugs before continuing to play, slowly picking up the pace.

Meanwhile, the bartender nods to Grabthar and gets him some wine. "Not like we're known for our wine, but I hope this is acceptable."

This message was last edited by the GM at 03:42, Fri 09 Sept 2016.

Grabthar
 Player, 3 posts
Fri 9 Sep 2016
at 03:48
A Bard's Tale
Grabthar nods to the merchant.  "Much thanks for the information, sir."

He takes the wine, swirls it around under his nose a moment before daintily sipping.  "Ah.  That it is.  A warm meal would go well with this."

He slides another coin over and watches the performance with a satisfied smile.
Joe
 player, 399 posts
Fri 9 Sep 2016
at 03:51
A Bard's Tale
  "Wouldn't you notice if he stole clothes twice his size?" Unless he's high enough level to steal equipped items, then that could be problematic.

  Joe is glad Diet-Orc has such low standards for wine.  Usually a monocle means duels to the death over a bad vintage, right?
Narrator
 player, 987 posts
 For narrating
 and convenience
Fri 9 Sep 2016
at 04:02
A Bard's Tale
The merchant looks over at Joe. "You would think, but no. You'll probably notice if the kender decides to wear said clothes, but you won't notice them taking it."

The boy begins tapping his foot and plays a nice, upbeat tune for the people present.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2ZxAVUsuE4Y

One of the locals says, "Well ya can't complain about the music this kender's puttin' out."

The bar maid heads over to Grabthar and says, "Any specific warm meal you had in mind?"

https://s6.postimg.io/6rqxae0n...1892fb959802a05c.jpg
Grabthar
 Player, 4 posts
Fri 9 Sep 2016
at 04:09
A Bard's Tale
Grabthar chuckles at the conversation about hypothetical theft and nods to the local.  "True true."

To the bar maid he smiles and raises his glass.  "A pleasure, miss.  I'm always one to sample the local favorites.  In my experience, they're favorites for good reason."
Joe
 player, 400 posts
Fri 9 Sep 2016
at 04:13
A Bard's Tale
  "I guess you're speaking from experience, then." Joe is imagining that, probably, the Merchant really didn't go several hours before realizing he wasn't wearing pants anymore.

  Probably.
Narrator
 player, 988 posts
 For narrating
 and convenience
Fri 9 Sep 2016
at 04:16
A Bard's Tale
The merchant says, "Yes."

When the kender is done playing, the bar maid brings grabthar the house special; their prize winning chili.

The people present clap for the kender as he finds himself a seat, right in between Grabthar and Joe, it seems. He seems even smaller up close. "Water, please?" he asks. The bartender nods and gets some water for him.
Grabthar
 Player, 5 posts
Fri 9 Sep 2016
at 04:21
A Bard's Tale
Ha!  Got him there!...  Or not.  Apparently he did spend some time pantsless, robbed by a kender.  Grabthar tries his hardest not to laugh, and disguises it with the big smile and applause for the performance.

He thanks the waitress and smiles at the little one.  "Beautiful music, good sir.  Bravo!"
Joe
 player, 401 posts
Fri 9 Sep 2016
at 04:30
A Bard's Tale
  "It was nice, yeah." My, what a descriptive review.

  On the bright side, his demeanor means he can keep a straight face at the concept of pantless and confused merchant.
Narrator
 player, 989 posts
 For narrating
 and convenience
Fri 9 Sep 2016
at 04:37
A Bard's Tale
The kender says, "Thanks! The name's Chessnut. What's yours?" He even sounds like a little boy. He crosses his arms to indicate an offered handshake to both Grabthar and Joe at the same time.

"Don't! ...touch him." the merchant reminds. Chessnut doesn't seem bothered at all, maintaining his genuine smile.
Grabthar
 Player, 6 posts
Fri 9 Sep 2016
at 04:41
A Bard's Tale
With a bemused smile, Grabthar takes a clean kerchief from his vest pocket and covers his hand with it before accepting the handshake.  Technically not touching the kender!

"Grabthar.  A pleasure to make your acquaintance."
Joe
 player, 402 posts
Fri 9 Sep 2016
at 04:50
A Bard's Tale
  "It's okay. My profession is used to small fast moving things."  Does already wearing gloves count, if a kerchief counts?

  "I'm Joe." Most boring name in the room is go.
Narrator
 player, 990 posts
 For narrating
 and convenience
Fri 9 Sep 2016
at 04:54
A Bard's Tale
"You two look like adventurers. Am I right in assuming so?" He begins drinking his water.

Once adventurer status is confirmed, Chessnut says, "Well I'm an adventurer too. And boy do I have a crazy story for you, if you have the ear to listen."
Grabthar
 Player, 7 posts
Fri 9 Sep 2016
at 05:08
A Bard's Tale
Grabthar chuckled from Joe's comment.  He also affirmed his adventurer status to Chestnut.

"Oh do tell.  I'm all ears."

He takes a taste of the chili and sips some more wine.
Joe
 player, 403 posts
Fri 9 Sep 2016
at 05:11
A Bard's Tale
   "There do seem to be just as many crazy stories as there are boring ones, so go for it."
Narrator
 player, 991 posts
 For narrating
 and convenience
Fri 9 Sep 2016
at 05:21
A Bard's Tale
Chessnut says, "So there I was, at the base of Lookout Mountain. We were a full team; a fighter, a cleric, a wizard, a rogue, and myself. Our stuff started going missing, so naturally, people started looking through my stuff to see if I had taken their stuff. But, of course, they found nothing more than my own stuff. But we soon found footprints, followed 'em, and found the culprits. A whole encampment of undead goblins. You with me so far?"

Chessnut sips from his water. Once it is confirmed Joe and Grabthar are following the story, Chessnut continues, "Well the thing is, these undead were intelligent. They could hold conversations and seemed to be celebrating the gathering of random nick-naks. When we confronted them, they begged us forgiveness, saying that they only steal nick-naks in order to appease their god so that they are granted the ability to not crave the flesh of the living."
Grabthar
 Player, 8 posts
Fri 9 Sep 2016
at 05:23
A Bard's Tale
Flustered, Grabthar clears his throat and adjusts his monocle.  "That is a crazy story.  What came of it?"
Joe
 player, 404 posts
Fri 9 Sep 2016
at 05:29
A Bard's Tale
  "That's the most practical criminal usage of undead I've ever heard of." So clearly that means the story is made up then... Or maybe Joe's views on common sense are too skewed as usual
Narrator
 player, 992 posts
 For narrating
 and convenience
Fri 9 Sep 2016
at 05:38
A Bard's Tale
Chessnut continues, "Well since it had just been nick-naks, we figured we would let it be. But the wizard, cleric and I were all very curious what kind of god grants undead the ability to act normal and not crave bodyparts. So we asked and they gave us directions to their god, who lived at the top of Lookout Mountain. When we arrived, we saw an impressive looking temple, but it had clearly been abandoned a long time ago... if re-inhabited recently."

He sips his water. "But when we found the god, it was a hobgoblin wizard. He attacked us, and was surprisingly tough, but we beat him and managed to keep him alive so we could ask what gives. His answer? He said that when the goblins drank from the nearby spring, he cast a spell on the goblins that made them appear to be undead, then lied to them and convinced them they had been turned undead by the spring water. After that, he reassured them that he was a god and could keep them from becoming mindless zombies who exist only to eat the flesh of the living, but he would need them to steal things from passers-by."
Grabthar
 Player, 9 posts
Fri 9 Sep 2016
at 05:41
A Bard's Tale
Grabthar laughs and applauds.  "Bravo!  Quite the story!  Did you clear things up with the duped goblins?"
Joe
 player, 405 posts
Fri 9 Sep 2016
at 05:46
A Bard's Tale
  Joe's expectations of the durability of NPC wizards would rate tougher than expected as the wizard being irritated swords did not deflect off of their skin.

  "Did he ever even spend it, or did it just end up in a pile like these kinds of scams tend towards?"
Narrator
 player, 993 posts
 For narrating
 and convenience
Fri 9 Sep 2016
at 05:51
A Bard's Tale
Chessnut giggles and says, "We told the goblins, yeah... and got our stuff back."

He then looks up at Joe. "He never spent it. He just horded. And he admitted it was less for riches and more for pulling a prank on the goblins. After all, he didn't expect much of a result from the goblins beyond trinkets."
Grabthar
 Player, 10 posts
Fri 9 Sep 2016
at 05:53
A Bard's Tale
Grabthar has a satisfied smile.  "Splendid!  I do love a happy ending."
Joe
 player, 406 posts
Fri 9 Sep 2016
at 05:56
A Bard's Tale
  "Well, happy for anyone that matters, at least." Hobgoblins.  Even when in a campaign focused around their lore, you still remember the goblin barbarian's name instead of their leader's.
Narrator
 player, 994 posts
 For narrating
 and convenience
Fri 9 Sep 2016
at 06:02
A Bard's Tale
Chessnut says, "Surely, you two have stories aplenty to share?"

It would be about now Joe and Grabthar both notice their coin purses are lighter by about half.
Grabthar
 Player, 11 posts
Fri 9 Sep 2016
at 06:06
A Bard's Tale
Grabthar nods, trying to recall one that's believable.  "Seems forever ago that I happened upon a goblin going through town garbage for a snack.  Then suddenly, there was quite an explosion down the way.  While the townsfolk scrambled about in fear, the goblin seemed unimpressed and began critiquing the making of a proper explosion!"

Grabthar checks his coinpurse and frowns.

This message was last edited by the player at 06:15, Fri 09 Sept 2016.

Joe
 player, 407 posts
Fri 9 Sep 2016
at 06:17
A Bard's Tale
  This is what happens when you are only a /WIS secondary, instead of Primary... Well, at least without the respective Backgrounds to get that sorted.

  "Well, there was that time a merchant got to say 'I told you so'." Maybe. He's wondering if the story ends up 'that time someone tried to frame a Kender'.  It's not enough to have a single layer of paranoia, you need to branch out.
Narrator
 player, 995 posts
 For narrating
 and convenience
Fri 9 Sep 2016
at 06:25
A Bard's Tale
Chessnut laughs hardily, kicking his legs! "Goblins! They're so funny!"

He then looks up curiously at Joe. "Oh? How does that story go?"

YES, Joe! USE the paranoid side of the force! Let no one guide your actions!
Grabthar
 Player, 12 posts
Fri 9 Sep 2016
at 06:29
A Bard's Tale
Grabthar has an unamused look.  "Well my purse is now suddenly wanting for half of it's contents.  And of course this after we were warned to stay away from the Kender because of the reputation for pick pocketing."

He looks around the room, looking for the culprit.
Joe
 player, 408 posts
Fri 9 Sep 2016
at 06:36
A Bard's Tale
  "Pretty much that. Though the big question is, would bard business be so slow as to try that with not one, but two adventurers."  Inter party drama is a common situation, but they aren't in a party.
Narrator
 player, 996 posts
 For narrating
 and convenience
Fri 9 Sep 2016
at 07:01
A Bard's Tale
Chessnut says, "Well... that's just inconvenient."

The merchant says, "Look! The kender has coin stuffed in his boots!"

Chessnut looks down at his boots curiously. "Wha? Why would someone fill my boots up with coins? That's going to be uncomfortable and I have to be careful how I pull the boots off or else spill the coins!"
Grabthar
 Player, 13 posts
Fri 9 Sep 2016
at 07:05
A Bard's Tale
"Quite the keen eye, sir," Grabthar says to the merchant.

"I suppose if we were to count up those coins, it will equal the amount the two of us are missing."
Joe
 player, 409 posts
Fri 9 Sep 2016
at 07:11
A Bard's Tale
  "...Their boots, really?  I could have sworn he was a bard, not a jester.  Obvius jingling when they walk would be normal then.  You're really, really bad at this theft thing considering the reputation."
Narrator
 player, 997 posts
 For narrating
 and convenience
Fri 9 Sep 2016
at 07:17
A Bard's Tale
The merchant frowns and says, "Already charmed by the little thief, I see. Suit yourselves, but I'm outta here before he takes something of mine."

Chessnut is carefully pulling coins out of his boots and then pulling his feet out so he can dump the rest of the coins onto the counter. Carefully. He doesn't want to lose one coin. He has this concentrated look on his face, seemingly ignoring the merchant.

If the coins from his boots are counted, they do, in fact, add up to what was taken from Grabthar and Joe.
Grabthar
 Player, 14 posts
Fri 9 Sep 2016
at 07:24
A Bard's Tale
Grabthar suspects the merchant was trying his darndest to set up the Kender.  And also suspects that the merchant was right and the Kender is untrustworthy.

"You seem deep in thought.  Is everything ok, Chestnut?"
Joe
 player, 410 posts
Fri 9 Sep 2016
at 07:28
A Bard's Tale
  The bard is clearly plotting REVENGE.  Or embarrassed they got caught.  Or both.  Still, end result is Joe got his money back, everything worked out juuuust fine.

  "I didn't think it was physically possible to cram that many coins into boots already being worn." just imagine how coin jars must be in DnD land, given the size of coppers.
Narrator
 player, 998 posts
 For narrating
 and convenience
Fri 9 Sep 2016
at 07:33
A Bard's Tale
Chessnut ohs and says, "My boots are stretchyboots! I got tired of how ridged normal boots are, so I had a custom pair made."

He looks nervous and says, "I know how this looks, but I didn't take your money. If I had, I would be examining it right in front of you rather than cramming it in my boots. A common misunderstanding about kender is that we steal. And the main reason a kender goes for coin is because it's shiny.... but I wonder how your money got in my boots."
Grabthar
 Player, 15 posts
Fri 9 Sep 2016
at 07:40
A Bard's Tale
Grabthar takes his money back and offers the shiniest one he can find to Chestnut.  "A thank you for the nice music.  'Innocent until proven otherwise,' is a mindset I try to keep.  Common conceptions or misconceptions may not apply at all to you, so I do my best to judge the individual based on their own actions, not those of others."
Rhagar
 player, 57 posts
Fri 9 Sep 2016
at 07:48
A Bard's Tale
  "I'm not nearly as reasonable as I seem.  I'm just used to very twisty logics that can make me look straightforward by comparison intending to make themselves look good and others look bad"

  Somewhere else, Rhagar escorts an annoying NPC to safety and confirms his suspicion the other party members were claiming he turned on them left Mister Magoo's fantasy relative for dead.

This message was lightly edited by the player at 07:49, Fri 09 Sept 2016.

Narrator
 player, 999 posts
 For narrating
 and convenience
Fri 9 Sep 2016
at 18:04
A Bard's Tale
Chessnut* lets out a sigh of relief. "Thanks... though I assure you even if it had been me, I'd give your stuff back. Still, the question remains; who did it? I mean, sure the merchant seems suspicious because he doesn't like kender and he spotted the money in my boots, but that doesn't mean he did it."

Upon receiving the shiny coin, Chessnut beams at Grabthar. "Wow! Thanks!"

* (So I noticed Chris spelling this as Chestnut, which is the correct spelling for the delicious nut we know and love. But I'm still unsure. While I would like it to be spelled proper, its current Chessnut spelling could be explained a couple ways: Either he really liked chess when he was little, or his name was misspelled when he learned how to spell it and it stuck. XD But the spelling Chestnut looks cooler. I dunno.)
Grabthar
 Player, 16 posts
Sat 10 Sep 2016
at 04:23
A Bard's Tale
Grabthar adjusts his monocle and addresses Joe's self-assessment.  "You did not loose your cool when robbed.  I suppose your jadedness is an acceptable substitute for being reasonable, then."

He smirks slyly at Chestnut.  "You're welcome.  So you are in the habit of taking things then returning them, then."

Listfully, Grabthar continues, "I doubt our culprit will be discovered any time soon, though.  We could report the incident to the constable, but that risks a racist and possibly dangerous confrontation with the authorities.  At best, they'll simply dismiss us with what we already know - that the best that can be done right now is to keep a sharp eye out."
Joe
 player, 411 posts
Sat 10 Sep 2016
at 04:30
A Bard's Tale
  "It does sound hard to explain aggressive borrowing in a socially acceptable manner." He looks back over to nice bar lady "I don't suppose you have anyone around here with a reputation for bizzare pranks and the like?"
Narrator
 player, 1000 posts
 For narrating
 and convenience
Sat 10 Sep 2016
at 04:35
A Bard's Tale
The lady shakes her head. "Whoever did it is not likely a local."

Chessnut answers Grabthar, "Well yes. I am in the habit of borrowing things and then returning them. All kender are. But I didn't borrow your money; my hands were occupied with this glass of water anyway.... whenever I wasn't waving them around for emphasis to my story, that is."
Grabthar
 Player, 17 posts
Sat 10 Sep 2016
at 04:46
A Bard's Tale
"Well that helps a bit," Grabhtar comments to the latest clue, "Though to be honest, this prank is beneath the notice of accomplished adventurers.  We tend to deal in real threats like dangerous monsters and whatnot.

He appreciates Chestnut continuing to present evidence in his defense.  "I would ask simply that borrowing only happen if my permission has been given."
Joe
 player, 412 posts
Sat 10 Sep 2016
at 04:55
A Bard's Tale
  "I'm going to have to remember that one, the next time I don't see something I should have."  This pit trap was beneath my noticed. Get it! Because pit!?.

  "But yes, asking first would be great in future.  Less needing to apologize for punching on reflex and the like."
Narrator
 player, 1001 posts
 For narrating
 and convenience
Sat 10 Sep 2016
at 05:00
A Bard's Tale
Chessnut giggles, finding Joe's punch threat to be amusing rather than worrying. "For what it's worth, I have been trying really hard to get into the habit of asking first. I used to listen to my grampa's tales and how many misunderstandings happened all because he didn't learn to ask first."

He then looks at Grabthar. "Speaking of danger; we should check the quest board in case there is something for us to do around this area."
Grabthar
 Player, 18 posts
Sat 10 Sep 2016
at 05:04
A Bard's Tale
Grabthar smiles, pleased with the conversation.  "Quite."

He ambles at a relaxed pace to the quest board if the place has one.
Joe
 player, 413 posts
Sat 10 Sep 2016
at 05:07
A Bard's Tale
  Joe totally lets Grabthar deal with standing up and walking to read things for him.  "I wonder at what point it stops being a misunderstanding, just understanding it's a problem?"  Grandpa, stealing the ranger's belt buckle is not a good plan in the middle of a fight.
Narrator
 player, 1002 posts
 For narrating
 and convenience
Sat 10 Sep 2016
at 05:13
A Bard's Tale
Chessnut says, "I dunno. I suppose time will tell."

The quest board has standard stuff, including possible bandit activity in the abandoned fort to the west.
Grabthar
 Player, 19 posts
Sat 10 Sep 2016
at 05:17
A Bard's Tale
"Pretty straight forward listings here.  Missing person.  Missing valuables.  Reward for capture of suspected gang of bandits, dead or alive.  Likely all these are related.  Could set out in the morning for their hideout, if you feel like teaming up."
Joe
 player, 414 posts
Sat 10 Sep 2016
at 05:20
A Bard's Tale
  It would be convenient (for them) if the missing person was with the bandits (if they won).  "Works for me."
Narrator
 player, 1003 posts
 For narrating
 and convenience
Sat 10 Sep 2016
at 05:23
A Bard's Tale
Chessnut looks at the two. Then says, "I can use music to heal wounds... but shouldn't we try finding one or two more people to go with us? I'm not a healer like a cleric is and three is a small number even with a real healer. But yes, I will join you in the morning."
Grabthar
 Player, 20 posts
Sat 10 Sep 2016
at 05:26
A Bard's Tale
Grabthar looks about, shrugs, and mentions to the waitress.  "Should anyone show interest in these quests, do please let them know of our intentions of looking into them in the morning."
Joe
 player, 415 posts
Sat 10 Sep 2016
at 05:29
A Bard's Tale
  Joe nods, "If people were willing, they will show up.  Well, that or leave early and then attack us to remove the competition."
Narrator
 player, 1004 posts
 For narrating
 and convenience
Sat 10 Sep 2016
at 05:32
A Bard's Tale
Chessnut says, "Then we'll do something they don't expect: Flee! Then tell the authorities."
Grabthar
 Player, 21 posts
Sat 10 Sep 2016
at 05:33
A Bard's Tale
Grabthar chuckles.  "Indeed.  Well see you two in the morning.  I'm turning in."

He heads for his room to get some sleep.
Joe
 player, 416 posts
Sat 10 Sep 2016
at 05:35
A Bard's Tale
  Joe is so glad there is no (written) policy against putting beartraps by the window to your room at the Inn.
Narrator
 player, 1005 posts
 For narrating
 and convenience
Sat 10 Sep 2016
at 16:19
A Bard's Tale
It is an uneventful night and the trio wake up without incident. Although there is a very mangled, dead squirrel in on of Joe's bear traps.

Chessnut is up and playing his violin in the commons room. There appears to be a couple adventurers sitting at a table nearest to the performance.
Grabthar
 Player, 22 posts
Sun 11 Sep 2016
at 03:42
A Bard's Tale
Grabthar enjoys a morning tea, one lump, with the music.  Between sips he sizes up the adventurers, looking for clues if they're the kind he'd be willing to team up with.  Yes, beggars CAN be choosers.  Even a beggar wouldn't accept food from a carrion devil.
Joe
 player, 417 posts
Sun 11 Sep 2016
at 03:54
A Bard's Tale
  Considering the were indoors, Joe's decision was still validated.  Unless he just deprived a druid of their pet... In which case still validated due to poor familiar quality.

  He deals with food first, letting others stare at strangers for him second. "Morning, Granthar." He didn't forget the Kendar ,but they are kind of in the middle of the whole music thing.

This message was last edited by the player at 04:14, Sun 11 Sept 2016.

Callie
 NPC, 321 posts
 Cleric of Sehanine
 Lover Halfling
Sun 11 Sep 2016
at 04:07
A Bard's Tale
One of the adventurers is a surprisingly pretty halfling cleric who has symbols of Sehanine on her and her ridiculously oversized sword. Another is a large, grizzled, middle-aged man who has all the obvious markings of a fighter in full plate. Despite this, he is smiling from the music. When Chessnut is done his performance, they both clap.

Chessnut waves Grabthar and Joe over, which causes the cleric and fighter to look over at the two.
Grabthar
 Player, 23 posts
Sun 11 Sep 2016
at 04:10
A Bard's Tale
Grabthar heads over to Chessnut, also clapping.  "Bravo, Chessnut.  Another fine performance."
Joe
 player, 418 posts
Sun 11 Sep 2016
at 04:15
A Bard's Tale
  Joe nods, as he heads over.  Once more the only person in any given group of 'average' height.

  "I hope you slept well, Chessnut." after a moment, he adds "I guess I could hope you two also slept well."
Callie
 NPC, 322 posts
 Cleric of Sehanine
 Lover Halfling
Sun 11 Sep 2016
at 04:19
A Bard's Tale
Chessnut smiles and does a sweeping bow before smiling brightly at Grabthar and Joe. "Thanks, Grabthar. And I did sleep well, Joe. Thank you."

The two adventurers lose their smiles. The fighter gets a hardened expression and Callie gets a sad look. "While that is nice of you, we... did not sleep well."

The fighter speaks up, "If you bunch are looking for some adventure, we've got a tough one for you..."
Grabthar
 Player, 24 posts
Sun 11 Sep 2016
at 04:22
A Bard's Tale
Grabthar nods to Chessnut then turns to the other two.  "Oh?  Well you have my attention."
Joe
 player, 419 posts
Sun 11 Sep 2016
at 04:27
A Bard's Tale
  Joe gets the feeling these two recently had a full party. "I'm guessing on a scale of one to ten, it falls under 'revenge'"  Revenge is a real number, right?

This message was lightly edited by the player at 04:27, Sun 11 Sept 2016.

Callie
 NPC, 323 posts
 Cleric of Sehanine
 Lover Halfling
Sun 11 Sep 2016
at 04:38
A Bard's Tale
Callie says, "Not revenge. Closure. A powerful sorceress has been collecting men like trophies. Literal, frozen, statuesque trophies. She lures the men with her charm and then after getting close with them, simply freezes them to keep them around in her mansion. We're hoping to free the men and then stop her from ever doing that again."

Chessnut ohs, looking a little mystified.
Grabthar
 Player, 25 posts
Sun 11 Sep 2016
at 04:40
A Bard's Tale
Grabthar frowns and strokes his chin.  "Quite terrible villain, to be sure.  Were you expecting to be able to defeat her with just the two of you?"
Joe
 player, 420 posts
Sun 11 Sep 2016
at 04:44
A Bard's Tale
  Another day to be thankful he prefers shooting things out of arms reach, even if a lot of the time people don't want to be considerate and just let him shoot them.

  "Yeah, I can see how that would be considered a problem."
Callie
 NPC, 324 posts
 Cleric of Sehanine
 Lover Halfling
Sun 11 Sep 2016
at 04:49
A Bard's Tale
Callie says, "We were.... more hoping. We can't stand by, but we were going to look for a team before going ourselves if we couldn't get that. See... Sehanine revealed much to me in a dream about this woman. She does this because she is so scared of being hurt, she freezes the men before they can inevitably break her heart. Then keeps them around to reminisce about the good times. But as a cleric of Sehanine, I believe I can reach her heart with words."

Chessnut says, "So... if you didn't get a team, you were going to risk yourself by trying to talk things out?"

Callie nods. "Yes."
Grabthar
 Player, 26 posts
Sun 11 Sep 2016
at 04:53
A Bard's Tale
And while she's distracted giving her villainous speech, Grabthar sneaks up behind her...  Half orc ninja sneak attack!

He raises his eyebrow at the revelation of divine intervention.  "Indeed!  Well as it so happens, the three of us had intentions of ridding the area of bandit activity today.  What's say you join us and consider it an audition.  To see if we work together well as a team."
Joe
 player, 421 posts
Sun 11 Sep 2016
at 04:58
A Bard's Tale
  "So, Don't shoot them mid sad speech then, got it." Shoot them after they try to freeze the nice cleric anyway.

  He wonders if the missing person's entirely unrelated, or not.  "They might just leave without us, if we swing by bandit town first."
Callie
 NPC, 325 posts
 Cleric of Sehanine
 Lover Halfling
Sun 11 Sep 2016
at 05:02
A Bard's Tale
Callie says, "Her victims take time. Time we had hoped to use to get a team together. So yes, we will go with you to stop the bandits first."

Chessnut says, "Wow. So a couple more adventurers just landed in our laps! Nice! Let's go kick some bandit butt then."
Grabthar
 Player, 27 posts
Sun 11 Sep 2016
at 05:04
A Bard's Tale
Grabthar offers a handshake.  "Grabthar.  These are my recent acquaintances Joe and Chestnut."
Joe
 player, 422 posts
Sun 11 Sep 2016
at 05:06
A Bard's Tale
  "Glad to hear you won't be trying to deal with it nearly alone when you don't have to."
Callie
 NPC, 326 posts
 Cleric of Sehanine
 Lover Halfling
Sun 11 Sep 2016
at 05:11
A Bard's Tale
Callie takes the hand and says, "I am Callie Underbough, Cleric of Sehanine. And this is John of Garth."

After pleasantries, the group heads out. Chessnut is telling another seemingly tall-tale about someone turning a vampire's disembodied head into a grenade that then got stuffed down a dragon's throat to blow up from inside...

His upbeat demeanor seems addictive and the two new team mates' moods go back to bemused / happy.
Grabthar
 Player, 28 posts
Sun 11 Sep 2016
at 05:14
A Bard's Tale
Grabthar chuckles, also amused.  He at least gives the appearance of believing the tall tales.  He's encountered a few strange things himself, after all.  Along the way he tries to get to know the team his with.
Joe
 player, 423 posts
Sun 11 Sep 2016
at 05:18
A Bard's Tale
  "That sounds slightly more outlandish than beating a cloaker to death with a coat rack."
Callie
 NPC, 327 posts
 Cleric of Sehanine
 Lover Halfling
Sun 11 Sep 2016
at 05:35
A Bard's Tale
Chessnut is super open, willing to answer any question about himself. Anyone listening to him can either come to the conclusion the guy has a tendency to exaggerate, or he has some hilarious luck. Either way, the guy seems a generally positive person to be around. Chessnut has a normal kender background; when he got to a certain age, wanderlust hit and he wandered off.

Callie is about as open as a normal person, but despite not being as energetic as Chessnut, is very friendly. It is easy to find out the girl has a strict policy of "two strikes and you're out"; she is willing to give someone a second chance, such as allowing villains to surrender, but has zero tolerance for unrepentant sorts. So all of her mercy goes out the window when someone fails to continue behaving. When Callie was a little girl, her mother passed away. From then on, she was raised by a cleric in a church of Sehanine.

John doesn't talk much, but what is easy enough to find out is that doesn't get enjoyment from killing villains, nor does he feel uneasy about it. It is purely a job for him, but he does get good feelings when he sees his actions cause people happiness. John is private about his background.
Grabthar
 Player, 29 posts
Sun 11 Sep 2016
at 05:43
A Bard's Tale
Grabthar is fine with telling his background.  He was the son of a human nobleman and a half-orc princess of a neighboring tribe, hence the aristocratic air.  But through political intrigue, his family has been stripped of their land and titles.  So he intends to hone his skills in skulduggery as an adventurer so he can expose the villains who dishonored his family.  There's also good coin to be made, so if all else fails, he'll be able to take care of his folks.
Joe
 player, 424 posts
Sun 11 Sep 2016
at 05:47
A Bard's Tale
  Joe considers his own history less notable, at least what he bothers to mention.  Introducing sharp objects to criminals and monsters started early, and just kind of kept going.
Callie
 NPC, 328 posts
 Cleric of Sehanine
 Lover Halfling
Sun 11 Sep 2016
at 06:03
A Bard's Tale
Concern and care is shown among the team, considering all the "gosh you poor thing" backstories from Callie, Grabthar and Joe. Callie seems to be the kind to lay a hand on people when showing concern. Chessnut keeps his hands to himself; it takes more mental effort than you might think and if he starts patting people on the back, his hand might find things to borrow. Besides, at his height, he would wind up patting 3 of the team members on the butt instead, which would be embarrassing.

The trip takes most of the day. The group arrives at the fort that has been overtaken by bandits. It's decided to be best to just wipe out the bandits right then instead of try to camp and risk the bandits patrolling and ambushing the group during their sleep.

The bandits posed a challenge, especially given the fort they have. But ultimately, with the current team, it seems the team is an unstoppable force. Sure, they got hurt, but the team setup is almost ideal: 1 tank, 1 healer, 2 damage dealers, and 1 jack-of-all-trades who can assist any of those jobs while buffing the team. The only thing missing is an AoE type, but the bandit fort wouldn't have been ideal for such anyway.

Within an hour, the team has rid the fort of the bandits and their boss was basically just another bandit who had muscled his way to the top.
Narrator
 player, 1006 posts
 For narrating
 and convenience
Mon 12 Sep 2016
at 01:52
A Bard's Tale
During combat, the group found that Grabthar can vanish from sight and reappear to backsmash the baddies a moment later.  Huzzah for giant ninja!  After securing prisoners, he looks among them for the missing person, having figured earlier that they probably stole the missing item then joined the bandits.

"Splendid job, everyone!  Sure is nice to be working among a group of trustworthy fellows."
Joe
 player, 425 posts
Mon 12 Sep 2016
at 01:59
A Bard's Tale
  Clearly, the group of bandits are kicking themselves for not pushing to call themselves a Swarm of bandits.

  "Well, it certainly goes a lot faster than slowly shooting them one at a time over the course of a week." Sometimes soloing a map isn't badass, it's just time consuming.
Callie
 NPC, 329 posts
 Cleric of Sehanine
 Lover Halfling
Mon 12 Sep 2016
at 02:04
A Bard's Tale
Maverick can empathize that ganking people one at a time is time consuming...

Chestnut says, "Hold your hands up high so I can give you a high five!"

Callie wonders how this is going to go and holds her hand high as she can. Chestnut runs to the nearby tree, runs up the side and LEAPS off the tree to high-five everyone who held up their hands, catching Callie's hand on his way down!

Callie stairs at her hand in disbelief.
Grabthar
 Player, 30 posts
Mon 12 Sep 2016
at 02:05
A Bard's Tale
Grabthar is amused!  "What is the sound of one hand applauding?  I think we just found out.  Most impressive, sir!"
Joe
 player, 426 posts
Mon 12 Sep 2016
at 02:09
A Bard's Tale
  The sound of one hand clapping is snapping your fingers.  No, really, that's how snapping your fingers works.

  Joe opts not to point this out.  "Have you really never been high fived in so long, Callie?" No Joe, she's starting at her hand because a leaping high five probably stings when she had the farthest drop towards her hand.
Callie
 NPC, 330 posts
 Cleric of Sehanine
 Lover Halfling
Mon 12 Sep 2016
at 02:18
A Bard's Tale
The missing person was nowhere to be found in the bandit fort.

Callie says, "Well.. yes, but I'm more amazed at what Chestnut just did. Sure, I saw you all do amazing things in that fort, but if someone told me I could high-five four people varying in size from three-foot to seven-foot, I wouldn't believe it. What, have you been high-fived by acrobatic three-foot people like that often?"

Chestnut smiles and gives Grabthar a thumbs-up. Then looks at Callie. "Like me, he just wants to look cool in front of the pretty lady."

Chestnut begins setting up camp. It is too late in the day to bother traveling back to town.

This message was last edited by the player at 02:26, Mon 12 Sept 2016.

Grabthar
 Player, 31 posts
Mon 12 Sep 2016
at 02:24
A Bard's Tale
Grabthar smiles and adds, "More than that, my friends.  You are cool."

He helps with the camp setup as well.

Turns out that the missing person was among the bandits!  No wait, it was a mask!  On top of another mask!
Joe
 player, 427 posts
Mon 12 Sep 2016
at 02:32
A Bard's Tale
  "Well, can't say often, no." It would depend on how often Joe has run into Shelly in this timeline.

  "Well, at least half that sentence is true, Chessnut."  Joe's wildly spiraling standards applied to himself are probably of no surprise to the assorted players, at least.
Callie
 NPC, 331 posts
 Cleric of Sehanine
 Lover Halfling
Mon 12 Sep 2016
at 02:35
A Bard's Tale
Chestnut ohs? "What part isn't true, Joe? And thanks, Grabthar!"

John is quiet, but at least doesn't seem like he is ignoring anyone.

Camp is set up readily enough. Callie looks up at Grabthar and says, "Yes. Thank you."
Grabthar
 Player, 32 posts
Mon 12 Sep 2016
at 02:38
A Bard's Tale
Grabthar chuckles at the pleasant conversation and gives a polite bow to Callie.  "You're most welcome, Madam."
Joe
 player, 428 posts
Mon 12 Sep 2016
at 02:52
A Bard's Tale
  "Well let's see, Callie's a pretty lady, so it must be the other part."

  Nevermind what Grabthar just said.
Callie
 NPC, 332 posts
 Cleric of Sehanine
 Lover Halfling
Mon 12 Sep 2016
at 02:58
A Bard's Tale
Chestnut says, "So you didn't wanna look cool? ...gosh. Guess you already know how cool you are then. Good!" He beams.

Callie just giggles. Though is lightly blushing from the commentary the guys have been giving. "Such a gentleman, Grabthar. You can take the man out of the aristocracy, but you can't take the aristocracy out of the man, eh?"
Grabthar
 Player, 33 posts
Mon 12 Sep 2016
at 03:01
A Bard's Tale
Grabthar smiles and nods.  "I was taught that a gentleman more than simply does, a gentleman is.  And I see that the same can be said of cool guys such as these three."
Joe
 player, 429 posts
Mon 12 Sep 2016
at 03:13
A Bard's Tale
  Joe is wondering what is going to go spectacularly wrong, considering it doesn't seem possible to have everyone in a party be worth hanging around with to be allowed to happen (Yes, even you John Mc NPC).
Callie
 NPC, 333 posts
 Cleric of Sehanine
 Lover Halfling
Mon 12 Sep 2016
at 03:25
A Bard's Tale
The night goes uneventfully. Again. And another mangled squirrel in a bear trap.

Joe wakes up to Chestnut cuddling his arm while asleep.

Grabthar is able to get up in time to see this also. Callie remains asleep. Probably because she stayed up a little to pay tribute to the moon goddess.
Grabthar
 Player, 34 posts
Mon 12 Sep 2016
at 03:27
A Bard's Tale
Grabthar covers his mouth to stifle a chuckle from the sight of the adorable Kender hugging the jaded human.  He gets about starting breakfast for everyone, since he may as well.  And he can do so very quietly too!
Joe
 player, 430 posts
Mon 12 Sep 2016
at 03:39
A Bard's Tale
  Joe really wonders some days, how tiny woodland creatures ever survive long enough to make more of themselves.

  He doesn't seem to mind snuggle halflings, even if he would have preferred the other one.  He is so going to check his own pockets later, though.
Callie
 NPC, 334 posts
 Cleric of Sehanine
 Lover Halfling
Mon 12 Sep 2016
at 03:43
A Bard's Tale
Yes, kender do "borrow" in their sleep. XD Up to Joe's player what, if anything, got taken, though.

When Chestnut awakens, he yawns, stretches, and smacks his lips a few times before sniffing at the air. "mmmm..."

Callie wiggles her nose before waking up and continuing to sniff. "...break...fast..?"

Quiet though Grabthar may be, the smell of breakfast is enough to wake any halfling.
Grabthar
 Player, 35 posts
Mon 12 Sep 2016
at 03:48
A Bard's Tale
The secret ingredient in the eggs, cheese, 'n diced meat is squirrel!  Waste not, want not!

"That it is, my friend.  Plenty for all!"

Grabthar has a big enough appetite, he might even place 4th in a halfling village's eating contest!  So he carries plenty for himself and to be shared.
Joe
 player, 431 posts
Mon 12 Sep 2016
at 03:54
A Bard's Tale
  Chessnut.  So good at sleep theft they don't poke themselves stealing caltrops.

  "Thanks, Grabthar."  Joe appreciates not having to do it himself, as much as anything.
Callie
 NPC, 335 posts
 Cleric of Sehanine
 Lover Halfling
Mon 12 Sep 2016
at 03:57
A Bard's Tale
The group happily eats, though eventually, Chestnut finds he has caltrops and wonders when and how he got them, examining them like they are a wonder to behold.

The group makes it back to town without event or ambush because this RP isn't about battles.

On the way back, of course, Chestnut is sure to sing and play on his violin.
Grabthar
 Player, 36 posts
Mon 12 Sep 2016
at 04:00
A Bard's Tale
"Most welcome, sir!  I do hope you find it agreeable."

Grabthar is loving the break from nonstop combat!  In some of his travels, even the elk was aggressive.  And he's sure to compliment Chestnut's music, of course.
Joe
 player, 432 posts
Mon 12 Sep 2016
at 04:08
A Bard's Tale
  Clearly squirrels are normally supposed to tell the other animals where the party is.

  "You know, it only finally came to mind" Considering his own poor habits when it comes to mentioning names.  "But what is the sorcereres you are after named?"  Their hopes to talk her down probably would not go very well, if referring to the sorceress as 'hey you'.

This message was last edited by the player at 04:08, Mon 12 Sept 2016.

Callie
 NPC, 336 posts
 Cleric of Sehanine
 Lover Halfling
Mon 12 Sep 2016
at 04:13
A Bard's Tale
Somewhere, there is a meeting of elk in their secret headquarters, saying that many squirrels died to get them the information on the adventuring team's weaknesses.

Callie says, "Her name is Maren."

Chestnut asks Joe, "Can you teach me how to use a bow better sometime?"

Chestnut then looks up at Grabthar and then John. "If you two got in an armwrestle, who would win?"

John says, "Probably Grabthar. Though Callie would give us both a run for our money; her strength for her size is unreal.... but then you all saw how easily she wielded that sword."

Callie blushes. "....."
Grabthar
 Player, 37 posts
Mon 12 Sep 2016
at 04:19
A Bard's Tale
Grabthar lets out a somewhat regretful sigh and nods.  "I am built for destruction while John is built for protection.  So I suppose in spite of my noble air, he would win in a contest of who is truly more noble."

He smiles to Callie and adds, "Though I take comfort in Callie's example that loving arms aught to be strong arms."

Somewhere, a rock biter mourns that his hands were not strong enough.
Joe
 player, 433 posts
Mon 12 Sep 2016
at 04:22
A Bard's Tale
  "Tip number one, you'll have to get a bow small enough for you to use first."

  Sehanine Cleric training includes bear hugs and bench pressing paladins, apparently.
Callie
 NPC, 337 posts
 Cleric of Sehanine
 Lover Halfling
Mon 12 Sep 2016
at 04:29
A Bard's Tale
Chestnut giggles from Joe's tip. When the team makes it back to the town, a couple guards approach the group. "Excuse me, but we need to take the kender into custody."

Callie says, "What? Why? What's the charge?"

The guards answer, "Theft. Apparently, a few things went missing over the night before you bunch set out on your quest. We are apprehending all suspects so we can sort them out."
Grabthar
 Player, 38 posts
Tue 13 Sep 2016
at 03:35
A Bard's Tale
Grabthar frowns and folds his arms at the rude treatment of his friend.

"On the bright side, it appears that at least he's being given the courtesy of due process.  Speaking of processing, we have returned from risking our lives to end the bandit threat and have brought you the survivors for legal punishment.  As one of the town heroes, Chestnut here is due honor and recompense.  Now as for your rascal sneak thief, we'll certainly be keeping an eye out."
Kyle
 player, 1441 posts
 Crossbow of SCIENCE...
 Or MAGIC? I always forget
Thu 15 Sep 2016
at 03:31
A Bard's Tale
  While Joe reasonably trusts Chessnut, he can't 100% dismiss the possibility the Kendar is just that good at absent minded kleptomania that even he didn't notice things being stolen, while stealing.

  "So of the stolen materials.  How much is it worth compared to what we were being paid anyways?" Joe is imagining a pile of stolen goods of mass equal to or greater than an entire kendar.
Callie
 NPC, 338 posts
 Cleric of Sehanine
 Lover Halfling
Thu 15 Sep 2016
at 04:12
A Bard's Tale
The guard says, "Yes, yes, honor and praise, blabla. Look, you are being paid to take care of the bandits. That is why you guys do what you do. If you did it for free, there would be cheers and adoration. But this is simply your job; nothing more. Your reward is coin. Now if you prefer praise and adoration instead of coin, I will be completely surprised. But when a town guard steals things from the townspeople, does it matter he kept the peace for 10 years? No. He still gets arrested. Just like your friend. Now move aside and let the law do its thing."

The other guard answers Joe, "If the mayor wants to pardon him by docking his pay, that's up to the mayor. Not us. Our job is to take the guy in and let the politicians sort things out."

Chestnut says, "Thanks, Grabthar. Thanks, Joe. But I'm sure you can get me out by finding who really did this. Whoever it is, if they want to frame me, they will have to get all that stuff into my stuff. So let's make a fake set of gear that looks exactly like mine, secretly hide my stuff, and have the constable hold onto the fake stuff. Then if the stolen things magically show up in the fake stuff, they will know it wasn't me."

Callie is quiet, watching and listening.
Grabthar
 Player, 39 posts
Thu 15 Sep 2016
at 04:27
A Bard's Tale
Grabthar wears his nonplussed unamused face, arms still crossed.  "Sounds like someone is jealous of the adventurer's life.  Well I suppose I cannot blame you.  It certainly has a number of advantages, like the freedom to go where one chooses, when one chooses.  But if it were all fun and no drawbacks, I'm sure you would have taken up the occupation long ago."

He was never in the way of the guards, so he doesn't budge.

Grabthar nods to his friend, "Brilliant idea, Chestnut.  I will be more than happy to help out in any way I can."
Joe
 player, 434 posts
Thu 15 Sep 2016
at 04:44
A Bard's Tale
  "Well life in towns would suck without guards, they actually stick around for one thing."  Even if that means ending up nameless casualties along with the rest of a settlement, at least they were there.

  Considering the other night involved stashing stolen goods in clothes Chessnut was already wearing, this is going to be a real hassle.  But Joe isn't quite enough of a jerk to not want to try.
Callie
 NPC, 339 posts
 Cleric of Sehanine
 Lover Halfling
Thu 15 Sep 2016
at 04:53
A Bard's Tale
One of the guards says, "I like his idea too. But what we'll do is have you bunch follow us to the constabulary. You all keep an eye on his back, we will guard his front. When we arrive, we'll have his things thoroughly searched and categorized, then put it all back together and leave it in a place where stuff can get planted in it. Saves you having to duplicate things and if he's going to be framed, it will happen after the thief knows we are not looking at his stuff."

The guards walk off with the group and do as suggested. This also means Chestnut winds up in pretty much just his underclothing, so Callie opts to wait outside.
Grabthar
 Player, 40 posts
Thu 15 Sep 2016
at 04:58
A Bard's Tale
Grabthar's opinion of the guards is improving!  They seem more interested in catching the real culprit than just pinning it on the convenient Kender and calling it a day.  Even so, he does suspect that it's a guard that's responsible.  So he makes a copy of his own of Chestnut's stuff just in case they decide to alter the original as "evidence."
Joe
 player, 435 posts
Sat 17 Sep 2016
at 04:07
A Bard's Tale
  Joe is just honestly surprised town guards are doing anything that isn't either stopping them, dying, or being absent.
Callie
 NPC, 340 posts
 Cleric of Sehanine
 Lover Halfling
Sat 17 Sep 2016
at 04:10
A Bard's Tale
After the stuff is sorted and reassembled, it is a waiting game and Chestnut lets the group know he'll be fine as he entertains himself with writing music.

Callie heads over to the local tavern with the group. John looks frustrated. Callie just looks calm, if deep in thought.
Grabthar
 Player, 41 posts
Sat 17 Sep 2016
at 04:13
A Bard's Tale
"I'll rejoin the group once our culprit has been caught," Grabthar tells the group, "Meantime, I'll be fighting sneak with sneak.  Tata for now."

And he sneaks off to find himself a good hiding spot to watch the bag so he can catch the culprit red handed.  And if possible, one with a good vantage point for watching other places in town.
Joe
 player, 436 posts
Sat 17 Sep 2016
at 04:15
A Bard's Tale
  "In hindsight, I wonder if mousetraps in his pockets would have actually worked."

This message was last edited by the player at 04:16, Sat 17 Sept 2016.

Callie
 NPC, 341 posts
 Cleric of Sehanine
 Lover Halfling
Sat 17 Sep 2016
at 04:26
A Bard's Tale
Callie says, "....mousetraps? I hope you aren't serious." The player has known other players to be serious about such before, after all. "Well I feel bad just sitting here, but I fear it is the best thing I can do for Chestnut..."

Meanwhile! Grabthar sees that same kender-hating guy visit the constabulary and look all smug that Chestnut is behind bars. Chestnut smiles and waves at the guy, "Wanna hear my latest song?"

The man stops smiling, looking rather angry. "Look how happy he is! This guy obviously has an escape plan!"

The guard says, "Quiet down, you, or we'll gag you and throw you in a cell across from him so you can hear his music for the rest of the evening. We run an orderly jail here, not a nuthouse for anyone to come by and yell at the top of their lungs about how happy someone is."

The man, of course, is furious. "Well... I... I never." and storms off.

While the guards are distracted with the guy, some completely black... humanoid-shaped thing... plants a bunch of stuff in Chestnut's stuff then slinks off like a puddle of ink that bleeds into the shadows.
Grabthar
 Player, 42 posts
Sat 17 Sep 2016
at 04:30
A Bard's Tale
Grabthar, astonished by what he saw, does his best to stealthily follow the black blob.  He wishes he could call for backup, but that would probably clue in the creature that it's time to leave town to torment some other target elsewhere.
Joe
 player, 437 posts
Sat 17 Sep 2016
at 04:39
A Bard's Tale
  "I've seen it work... occasionally. Usually it's just as silly as it sounds" Tom and Jerry make it look so easy.
Callie
 NPC, 342 posts
 Cleric of Sehanine
 Lover Halfling
Sat 17 Sep 2016
at 04:43
A Bard's Tale
Grabthar finds the shadow-thing is no longer there.

Callie gives an eyeroll and a near-laugh smile showing she clearly does not believe Joe. "A deity gave me a violin" sounds equally believable, apparently.
Grabthar
 Player, 43 posts
Sat 17 Sep 2016
at 04:46
A Bard's Tale
Troubled, Grabthar returns to his allies.

"Well I saw the culprit... but..."

He relays what he saw.  "Best theory I can come up with is that the merchant is some kind of dark mage using shadow magics."
Joe
 player, 438 posts
Sat 17 Sep 2016
at 04:49
A Bard's Tale
  In a world of magic and questionable physics, it can be hard sometimes to separate which kinds of stupid actually happen.

  "Hmm, mostly intangible entities tend to be a real headache." That's because you don't have convenient AoE or radiant spam, Joe.
Callie
 NPC, 343 posts
 Cleric of Sehanine
 Lover Halfling
Sat 17 Sep 2016
at 04:54
A Bard's Tale
Callie says, "Maybe... but there is no proof the merchant was using any magic, is there? At least now we know Chestnut will soon be exonerated. Unless the guards are actually involved."
Grabthar
 Player, 44 posts
Sat 17 Sep 2016
at 04:57
A Bard's Tale
"Part of why I came to you first.  I'm wondering if some clever plan could be cooked up.  Unfortunately, my cleverness ends at being able to sneak about, so I don't know how to draw out the villain."
Joe
 player, 439 posts
Sat 17 Sep 2016
at 05:00
A Bard's Tale
  "The fact they are willing to be obvious to the point of idiocy just to screw with Chesdnut? He's locked in a holding cell, they still planted stuff on him anyways.  When the guards will know even if Chessnut did escape and came back when they weren't looking, he can't have stolen that much stuff in thirty seconds."
Callie
 NPC, 344 posts
 Cleric of Sehanine
 Lover Halfling
Sat 17 Sep 2016
at 05:03
A Bard's Tale
Callie says, "Joe has a point. Whoever is doing this, whether it is the merchant or not, seems to be pretty obsessive with it. If Chestnut is set free, the person trying to frame him might try something desperate."
Grabthar
 Player, 45 posts
Sat 17 Sep 2016
at 05:06
A Bard's Tale
"Very well.  Let's go to the mayor with our plan so he can make it look like Chestnut was released for political reasons so the guards won't have any reason to check his bags on the way out.  That'll really infuriate the scoundrel!"
Joe
 player, 440 posts
Sat 17 Sep 2016
at 05:11
A Bard's Tale
  "Well, if the stuff is actually stolen goods then they may not let us just walk off with them.  Even if we intend on giving them back when this is sorted. I'm all for plans based around annoying the enemy, though"
Callie
 NPC, 345 posts
 Cleric of Sehanine
 Lover Halfling
Sun 18 Sep 2016
at 03:22
A Bard's Tale
When the group checks in with the guards, they inform the group that, as predicted, the stolen goods had been planted in Chestnut's stuff. "So we were going to release Chestnut anyway. But yeah. We can make like we released him without checking his stuff."

Chestnut waves at his buddies with a bright smile. "You should've seen how upset the merchant was when I smiled. I think the guy just doesn't believe in being happy."
Grabthar
 Player, 46 posts
Sun 18 Sep 2016
at 03:27
A Bard's Tale
Grabthar nods and lets the guards know about the shadow creature thing.  To Chestnut he chuckles.

"More likely that his last experience with a Kender left him hating all Kender.  I'm quite sure there are still plenty of things that would make him happy.  Just not your happiness."
Joe
 player, 441 posts
Sun 18 Sep 2016
at 03:36
A Bard's Tale
 "True, I am expecting a too little too late sympathetic sob story that really did suck for whoever is dealing with the shadow thing."  Knowing their luck, it could just as likely be the cranky merchant unknowingly manifesting a shadow that reinforces his prejudices so he gets to believe he's right.
Callie
 NPC, 346 posts
 Cleric of Sehanine
 Lover Halfling
Sun 18 Sep 2016
at 03:49
A Bard's Tale
Chestnut nods to Joe. Callie interjects, "Sob story or not, it is wrong to frame innocent people for crimes they didn't commit. I will feel sympathy and pity for a villain with a sob story, but only when it is shown they are repentant for hurting others who didn't deserve to be hurt. I've little patience for people who believe the universe revolves around only them."

Chestnut shrugs. "We don't know who is doing this or why. Whoever it is, if they apologize, I'll forgive 'em. If they don't apologize, I'll be disappointed, but still willing to forgive... if they stop."
Grabthar
 Player, 47 posts
Sun 18 Sep 2016
at 03:53
A Bard's Tale
Grabthar adjusts his monocle.  "Quite.  Now shall we be going, then?"
Joe
 player, 442 posts
Sun 18 Sep 2016
at 03:56
A Bard's Tale
  "Might as well, it would be pointless to stop partway."
Callie
 NPC, 347 posts
 Cleric of Sehanine
 Lover Halfling
Sun 18 Sep 2016
at 04:04
A Bard's Tale
Chestnut says, "Sure! So... where are we going?"

Callie says, "We never did figure out exactly what to bait the enemy with. Or for that matter, how to stop a person made entirely of shadow."
Grabthar
 Player, 48 posts
Sun 18 Sep 2016
at 04:06
A Bard's Tale
"I'll leave the shadow fighting to the moon cleric," Grabthar says, "But after a quick boast at the tavern, if our quarry leaves us alone, I was pretty sure we were wanting to track down an evil witch of some kind."
Joe
 player, 443 posts
Sun 18 Sep 2016
at 04:11
A Bard's Tale
  "Getting paid and thanked for the bandits all on it's own might set them off, at least.  Oh no, He must have made those bandits turn to crime in the first place by stealing their stuff!"
Callie
 NPC, 348 posts
 Cleric of Sehanine
 Lover Halfling
Sun 18 Sep 2016
at 04:17
A Bard's Tale
Chestnut says, "So back to my favorite place? Sweet!"

The group gets to the tavern and are served as usual. People are surprised to see Chestnut, as the word had already spread that the thief was caught and it was the kender. But Callie and Chestnut both have good charisma, so between the two of them, they easily explain that Chestnut was found innocent without giving away the detail about the stuff.
Grabthar
 Player, 49 posts
Sun 18 Sep 2016
at 04:21
A Bard's Tale
Grabthar is keeping a sharp eye out for anyone... or anything suspicious.
Joe
 player, 444 posts
Sun 18 Sep 2016
at 04:32
A Bard's Tale
  Joe keeps in mind that he's also trained in thievery, for the option of stealing the stolen goods from chesstnut so accusations look stupid with the kendar's pockets/boots/pants/etc empty when they look.
Callie
 NPC, 349 posts
 Cleric of Sehanine
 Lover Halfling
Sun 18 Sep 2016
at 04:35
A Bard's Tale
Nobody present seems suspicious. And nobody made of shadow appears.
Grabthar
 Player, 50 posts
Sun 18 Sep 2016
at 04:36
A Bard's Tale
"Well now that we've properly relayed the news that Chestnut was not the culprit, shall we be on our way?"
Joe
 player, 445 posts
Sun 18 Sep 2016
at 04:41
A Bard's Tale
  "Seems so, honestly we should probably start thinking about that sorceress again." Oh yeah, people being frozen is probably more inconvenient than petty theft.
Callie
 NPC, 350 posts
 Cleric of Sehanine
 Lover Halfling
Sun 18 Sep 2016
at 04:44
A Bard's Tale
Callie and John are, of course, relieved that the no more time has to pass before worrying about the sorceress. It is another long trek and night falls long before they arrive at the destination, so camp is set up.
Grabthar
 Player, 51 posts
Sun 18 Sep 2016
at 04:49
A Bard's Tale
Grabthar's mood improved the more distance he put between himself and that town.  He inhales deeply of the fresh air.  "Ah.  Open country!  I wonder if I ever succeed at my goals if I'll even be able to settle down having tasted of the freedom of travel."

Goose down pillows.  Servants cooking your meals.  Tea and other luxuries...  I'm sure you'll manage.
Joe
 player, 446 posts
Sun 18 Sep 2016
at 04:53
A Bard's Tale
  Joe has long since learned to accept that sometimes sidequests need to be put to the side.

  "I suppose that's what getting extra rich and living on a fancy airship is for."
Callie
 NPC, 351 posts
 Cleric of Sehanine
 Lover Halfling
Sun 18 Sep 2016
at 05:02
A Bard's Tale
So far, team Ascension and team SoW know from airship riding... but team Thunderspire hasn't tasted that yet.

Chestnut presents marshmallows to roast over the nighttime fire! "Boy can I relate to that... I mean... it's literally in my blood to venture off and explore the world. My whole race is exploration-bound and only settle down in old age."

Callie smiles and says, "Oh I know I can settle down. Even a retired adventurer can find things to do in their home... I know this because of how often I encountered bullies and such growing up. I just hope to find someone to settle down with, have kids, and live to see grandchildren."
Grabthar
 Player, 52 posts
Sun 18 Sep 2016
at 05:05
A Bard's Tale
Grabthar nods sagely.  "Indeed.  I'll have to keep that airship idea in mind.  Especially for taking Callie's grandkids on grand adventures!"
Joe
 player, 447 posts
Sun 18 Sep 2016
at 05:07
A Bard's Tale
  Joe imagines Kendar wanderlust getting so bad that their blood escapes from their body to wander faster. Or just get punched out by their communism fearing skeleton-wait no that's bizarre ninja techniques not wanderlust.

  "I think the only hard part there, Callie, will be finding a guy worth your time for it."
Callie
 NPC, 352 posts
 Cleric of Sehanine
 Lover Halfling
Sun 18 Sep 2016
at 05:12
A Bard's Tale
Callie bites her lower lip, twirls her finger in her hair and gives a quick once-over of each of the guys present. "Oh I dunno. I think I'll manage."

Chestnut and John both seem completely oblivious to Callie's half-subtle compliment. But they definitely enjoy roasted marshmallows! Chestnut shares some more personal adventure stories!

Callie shares one of her own.
Grabthar
 Player, 53 posts
Sun 18 Sep 2016
at 05:20
A Bard's Tale
Grabthar chuckles and enjoys the stories.  He's more than happy to share one of his own, though not one of personal experience.  Rather, a story his parents told him growing up.  Of how two people of completely different races, culture, abilities, and so on managed to fall in love and have a son they're so proud of.
Joe
 player, 448 posts
Sun 18 Sep 2016
at 05:25
A Bard's Tale
  Joe might wonder if he had a chance, but has the suspicion he would be struck by lightning and assaulted by birds at the same time.

  "I'm not sure what happened to them, but for whatever reason one time while hunting a dog was following me.  It seemed far too amused whenever I missed." Of course, DnD Duck hunt happened to Joe.
Callie
 NPC, 352 posts
 Cleric of Sehanine
 Lover Halfling
Sun 18 Sep 2016
at 05:28
A Bard's Tale
Duck hunt happens. No era can save you from the laughing dog.

Eventually, the group falls asleep. When they wake, Callie and John are missing. Their stuff is left behind, but their tracks are easily seen as though they just got up and walked off.

This message was last updated by the player at 05:28, Sun 18 Sept 2016.

Grabthar
 Player, 54 posts
Sun 18 Sep 2016
at 05:31
A Bard's Tale
Grabthar stares grimly at the tracks.  "I doubt this is a good sign.  If I were to take a guess, John was charmed, and Callie tried to give chase...  but she would have hollered to wake us.  I suppose both being charmed is a possibility."

Or you've been betrayed and are about to be ambushed.  Either way, he readies his weapon and stealthily follows the tracks.
Joe
 player, 449 posts
Sun 18 Sep 2016
at 05:41
A Bard's Tale
  Joe really wishes there was a 'don't need to sleep' belt to go along with the 'don't need to eat' belt.  Not like he used any daily powers today anyways.

   "Probably something more forced, if they left equipment behind."  He at the very least, grabs up Callie and John's stabby implements.
Narrator
 player, 1007 posts
 For narrating
 and convenience
Sun 18 Sep 2016
at 05:47
A Bard's Tale
Chestnut says, "Don't wander too far too quick, guys! We can probably leave most of the camp set up, but I'll be grabbing food stuffs so animals don't rummage through our stuff too much."

Grabthar and Joe can see the tracks keep leading them to where they were going anyway; the mansion of the sorceress.
Grabthar
 Player, 55 posts
Sun 18 Sep 2016
at 05:49
A Bard's Tale
Grabthar helps with the carrying of heavy things.  He's good at packing them right so they don't clank about.  Either way, he won't be leaving anyone too far behind as he scouts ahead.
Joe
 player, 450 posts
Sun 18 Sep 2016
at 05:58
A Bard's Tale
  "Splitting up even further would not be a good plan, that's true." snacks for the trip are also a good thing, even if that's less dramatic to say.
Narrator
 player, 1008 posts
 For narrating
 and convenience
Sun 18 Sep 2016
at 06:04
A Bard's Tale
Once the group makes it to the mansion and decides on a marching order, they soon find the various men frozen in time. Their ages range from mid-teens to guys in their 40's. Their appearances range from highly masculine to effeminate. Whoever this sorceress is, she clearly has wide tastes in men.
Grabthar
 Player, 56 posts
Sun 18 Sep 2016
at 06:06
A Bard's Tale
"Poor saps," Grabthar's thinking.  But it wouldn't do to talk.  So he continues to cautiously proceed, on guard against ambushes, traps, being spotted, and whatnot.
Joe
 player, 451 posts
Sun 18 Sep 2016
at 06:13
A Bard's Tale
  Joe wonders just how far potions of cold resistance will go, but it certainly beats nothing at all for when the time comes.

  "Which would be worse.  Moving these people into place later, or them getting frozen at these random spots."
Narrator
 player, 1009 posts
 For narrating
 and convenience
Sun 18 Sep 2016
at 06:20
A Bard's Tale
Chestnut quietly answers, "I guess that depends on the situation..."

Soon, the team can see a middle-aged woman (if very good looking for her age) petting a now perfectly still Callie next to the throne the sorceress is seated in. "You certainly have very pretty hair and such a darling face. I'm not normally one to add girls to my collection, but I could easily stare at you for hours at a time. I think I shall keep you."

Entering this room gives a feeling very similar to touching an electric fence or hitting your funny bone.
Grabthar
 Player, 57 posts
Sun 18 Sep 2016
at 06:22
A Bard's Tale
Grabthar figures the sorceress is distracted, so he signals for his friends to back away.  He retreats to the previous room to talk strategy with them.
Joe
 player, 452 posts
Sun 18 Sep 2016
at 06:30
A Bard's Tale
  Tingly room is generally a bad sign, yes. So he follows Grabthar back out. For all they know it may be proximity to the Sorcerers rather than the room itself.

  Arranging for a Rube Goldberg styled execution will be tricky.  But things often end up elaborate if you take on plot magics with a square peg for their round hole.

  "Okay, I'm expecting my current outlook may hopefully be unnecessary. Arranging for a catapult to fire through her bedroom window may be a bad idea if she treats any of her victims as teddybears.
Narrator
 player, 1010 posts
 For narrating
 and convenience
Sun 18 Sep 2016
at 06:38
A Bard's Tale
Chestnut has no idea what to do. "If I were to take a guess, though, Callie and John didn't get a chance to talk with her. That was Callie's original plan... maybe I can talk with her while you guys sneak around the other side?" Bad Chestnut! While that makes sense, it means the GM will just RP with himself! Seriously, the player needs to remember to never ever GM when in the mood to play a high-charisma character. u.u
Grabthar
 Player, 58 posts
Sun 18 Sep 2016
at 06:42
A Bard's Tale
"We can't risk it.  I think it best we knock her out and then try reasoning with her after she's safely restrained.  Was figuring on luring her out here into a trap ambush combo rather than confront her in the electric room."
Joe
 player, 453 posts
Sun 18 Sep 2016
at 06:49
A Bard's Tale
  "I could... Shoot her in the face with an arrow from the doorway I guess.  But somehow, I get the feeling that would not work as well as hoped." Even if she didn't have enough HP to tank it, likely would result in the arrow stopping in mid air or somesuch at this rate.

  "Though given her gushing over Callie, she might be tempted for a close to matching height set, yeah. It's not your idea being bad, so much as not trusting that room in particular, chessnut."
Narrator
 player, 1011 posts
 For narrating
 and convenience
Sun 18 Sep 2016
at 06:54
A Bard's Tale
Chestnut says, "How about if we convince her the place is haunted? I hear that giggling children in lonely mansions are supposed to spook people really bad, and I sound like a child by human standards."
Grabthar
 Player, 59 posts
Sun 18 Sep 2016
at 06:58
A Bard's Tale
Grabthar considers it.  "Well shooting her or making sounds like a child would certainly serve to lure her to our trap ambush.  But I'd rather avoid trying to scare her lest she flee or spiral further down the whirlpool of insanity."
Joe
 player, 454 posts
Sun 18 Sep 2016
at 07:10
A Bard's Tale
  "Well... First, we see if all the other frozen victims can be moved or not.  It may not help much if we want to avoid the room Callie is in, but it would mean we could get some out of here if we needed to." Though he really doubts tossing some on a cart for a wizard to examine for counterspells is really on their available timetable.
Narrator
 player, 1012 posts
 For narrating
 and convenience
Sun 18 Sep 2016
at 07:37
A Bard's Tale
It is soon discovered that the people can not be moved at all. "So if we can't scare her, what do you suggest? Maybe you wanna try talking her into coming to the other room?"