Scales of War: Throne of the Stone-Skinned King.   Posted by Mittens.Group: 0
 player, 1279 posts
 Crossbow of SCIENCE...
 Or MAGIC? I always forget
Wed 9 Mar 2016
at 07:32
Scales of War: Throne of the Stone-Skinned King
  "The well is tempting, though we should likely use either the provided circle or other means.  Breaking in with a more 'common' method could also mean less of an immediate reaction from the surrounding forces than using their favorite toy against them."  Kyle's player doubts there will be nearly as much difference, but hey.
 GM, 838 posts
Wed 9 Mar 2016
at 07:43
Scales of War: Throne of the Stone-Skinned King
Raichel asks, "Can they honestly tell we are using the well against them?"

Timothius says, "What if we use the upstairs portal as our escape plan? I rather like the idea of sneaking in the old-fashioned way with a supply ship. The people here are so used to portals, I'm sure they are more ready for that than plain old fashioned stealth."

May grins. "I'm down with any plan you guys have."

Timothius pulls out some parchment. "Let's get that map drawn up."
 GM, 1863 posts
Wed 9 Mar 2016
at 07:56
Scales of War: Throne of the Stone-Skinned King
Mits smirks.  "I'd like to use the Well.  There's no way they don't know we have control of it by now, and I'd just love to rub their faces in the fact we have control of it.  And it seems more exciting than smuggling myself in a box."

Kada'ne clarifies, "The fortress does not have a teleportation circle.  There is a dock within the Maw, the lowest level.  Up a spiral staircase is the prison level.  Above that is the Armory.  And above that is the top of the tower, where the Captain will likely be.  All three levels have defenders, but the top level is the most heavily defended."

He gets to drawing a map.
 player, 1280 posts
 Crossbow of SCIENCE...
 Or MAGIC? I always forget
Wed 9 Mar 2016
at 08:20
Scales of War: Throne of the Stone-Skinned King
  "Spite has often served us well, it is true.  Though it has always worked out best when it is spiteful in the process of already doing something practical, rather than spite just because... Not that 'teleport directly into base' isn't practical."
 player, 811 posts
 For narrating
 and convenience
Thu 10 Mar 2016
at 01:21
Scales of War: Throne of the Stone-Skinned King

Fortress of Three Sorrows
Like most other floating fortresses, the Fortress of Three
Sorrows is a brooding structure to which there are tethered three smaller towers raised atop astral detritus.
The fortress sits on top of a massive statue’s head, tilted
at a forty-five-degree angle, as if it was a tumor growing
out from the statue’s ear. The statue’s features are that of
a screaming human wearing an open-faced helm.

A. Satellite Towers
Tethered by chains forged from astral driftmetal to
the fortress are three satellite towers perched atop
rocky bergs. The bergs float on the astral horizon, and
the towers rise 20 feet above them.

B. Main Tower
The central tower grants access to the fortress’s
interior. When under attack, the githyanki captain
commands its forces from this location.

C. Ballista Platforms
The Main Tower sports four exposed staircases that
each descend to a ballista platform. There, crews
man these powerful siege engines and hurl death at
enemies as they approach.

D. Statue’s Head
The Fortress of Three Sorrows stands atop an ancient
statue’s decapitated head. The head floats on the
astral horizon, and three chains spill from its tear
duct to the satellite towers, giving the fortress its
appropriate name.

E. Maw
The githyanki excavated the statue’s mouth to serve as
a hangar for two astral interceptors (see page 46) and
two pact dragons.
 GM, 840 posts
Thu 10 Mar 2016
at 04:54
Scales of War: Throne of the Stone-Skinned King
Timothius stares. "...I just got to know; why did they build fortresses around a screaming head? And why fix towers to the eye like that?"

Raichel says, "There has to be some kind of history there... the statue looks human, for one thing, and it looks like it used to be part of a larger statue."

May says, "Huh. I just assumed the people here like killing and torturing people so much that the sight of a screaming head relaxes them."
 player, 1281 posts
 Crossbow of SCIENCE...
 Or MAGIC? I always forget
Thu 10 Mar 2016
at 05:03
Scales of War: Throne of the Stone-Skinned King
  "The practical reason would be that it is a solid mass that already exists in the Astral sea without having to build it entirly from scratch.  The likely answer would be 'because it's scary to live on a giant broken head'."

  He considers the tower placement, and says "They likely thought it was thematically appropriate to put an observation tower in the eye".

This message was last edited by the player at 05:12, Thu 10 Mar 2016.

 GM, 1865 posts
Thu 10 Mar 2016
at 05:16
Scales of War: Throne of the Stone-Skinned King
Mits stares at the drawing.  "Wow."

Gharvag and Rhapsody both look stumped by the question.  "Um..."

Kada'ne explains, "Kyle is correct on both counts.  My race is known for plundering the wealth of the Astral Sea.  That wealth is useful in our crusade against the illithid.  So opportunists are tempted to take it while we're distracted.  Less so when they see the city.  Very intimidating.

"The more I think about it, the more I think I should not join you on the rescue mission.  I would like to have someone here to secure your exit at the portal circle, my identity could yet prove useful concealed from the enemy and combat affords opportunity for it to be discovered, and there is much planning to be done for taking on Zechy once you've rescued Vlaakith."

Mits huhs.  "Speaking of whom.  How did she get resurrected?"

Gharvag answers.

"Vlaakith CLVII was destroyed around 25 years ago. I
might not agree with the methods used to remove her from
power, but she was mad. Had she succeeded in her designs,
it would have meant the end for all of us.  I'm not entirely
sure how she was revived, but
gone are the deific ambitions, and in their place
is a renewed commitment to our glorious crusade against
the mind flayers.

"Our leader is critical to our success.
She wants the gith peoples reunited
and has little use for the treacherous goddess and her
draconic legions.

"I am certain Vlaakith’s freedom will bring the rebels out
from hiding, but even if you reach an agreement, I can’t see
how we can follow through on any promises. Zetch’r’r has
the dragons on his side. As long as he carries the scepter
of Ephelomon, the dragons will do as he says. Even with
all our numbers, I’m not sure we can stand against such
powerful enemies."

Kada'ne smirks under his mask.  "Show them your painting, Mittens."

Mits gladly shows it off, proudly.  The Separatists look shocked.

Kada'ne concludes, "That was one of Tiamat's exarchs.  With the power of the Well and these heroes, I am confident that Zechy will soon fall."
 player, 615 posts
 Lightning Reflexes
 50,000 volts worth
Thu 10 Mar 2016
at 05:26
Scales of War: Throne of the Stone-Skinned King
May says, "Getting all kinds of ideas from the githyanki on designs for our airship."

Timothius glances at May. "Most of the people from home won't appreciate screaming faces for decoration as much as we would, May."


After Kada'ne talks, Raichel says, "And once Zetch'r'r falls, a combined effort to eliminate the mind-flayer threat would be great for everyone."

Timothius says to Kada'ne, "Your words are sound. Your staying behind is best for everyone involved. Would that I could have your considerable power at our side, but I still agree."

May nods. "It's alright. We got this."
 player, 1282 posts
 Crossbow of SCIENCE...
 Or MAGIC? I always forget
Thu 10 Mar 2016
at 05:31
Scales of War: Throne of the Stone-Skinned King
  "Considering her status as a Lich, it could very well be as simple as 'Never destroyed her phylactery', but it was in a location not practical for quickly returning to the Astral Sea."

  He nods to Kada'ne "Sensible outlook."
 GM, 1866 posts
Thu 10 Mar 2016
at 05:43
Scales of War: Throne of the Stone-Skinned King
Mits laughs and thumbs-ups to May.  "We can have it transform into monster-face combat mode after we fly into combat away from the ticker-tape parade the Coalition people throw for us."

Final preparations are made and the group steps right into the prison room Vlaakith is being held!

Suspended within a column of fire is a young githyanki
woman. Her body doesn’t move, but her eyes flick toward
you. To the side, and turning your direction, is a towering
angel whose astral essence crackles with lightning, flares
with flames, and drips poison. Opposite the guardian
stands a slim, horned humanoid dressed in scarlet robes
and gripping a gnarled staff in his hands. Just inside the
doorway, two menacing humanoids covered in gleaming
barbs fix you with fiery eyes.

The devil is immediately recognizable as one of the Archdevils of the Nine Hells!

This message was last edited by the GM at 05:54, Thu 10 Mar 2016.

 player, 616 posts
 Lightning Reflexes
 50,000 volts worth
Fri 11 Mar 2016
at 07:01
Scales of War: Throne of the Stone-Skinned King
Raichel squeaks like a mouse at the sight and a lightning bolt shoots from her involuntarily as if from her squeak, injuring the nearby angel.

Timothius says, "Dispater? Really? This is a joke. I'm not buying it." even as he said this, he trotted his way to the center of the room.

May says, "What's a dispater?" as she hops forward, hits the angel twice even as she deftly gets closer to the center of the room!

Raichel crackles with lightning before shooting a bolt that flies from one enemy to another! All of them feel the shock, though Dispater feels the worst one! Something feels different to the angel about Raichel's lightning...

Superior Reflexes gives Rai and Tim CA this round!
Rai SURPRISE Standard: Lightning Daggers v Angel. Hit(33)!
 dmg: 29
Tim SURPRISE Move: Move to center of room
May SURPRISE Standard: Inexorable Advance v Angel. Hit(45)! Hit(34)!
 dmg: 14 and 17 = 31

Minor: Bloodfury Weapon
Minor: Lightning in the Blood
Standard: Furious Bolts v Angel, Dispater, Barbed 1, 2. Hit(32)! CRIT(44)! Hit(42)! Hit(35)!
 dmg to Angel: 39
 dmg to Dispater: 66
 dmg to Barbed 1 and 2: 34
Free: Lightning Daggers v Angel. Hit(30)!
 dmg: 33

Angel of Tiamat's Vengeance HP: 446 - 29 - 31 - 39 - 33 = 314
Dispater HP: 382 - 66 = 316
Barbed 1 HP: 191 - 34 = 157
Barbed 2 HP: 191 - 34 = 157

This message was last edited by the player at 07:39, Fri 11 Mar 2016.

 GM, 1867 posts
Fri 11 Mar 2016
at 08:00
Scales of War: Throne of the Stone-Skinned King
Mits blasts the enemy with a hurricane of fire!

"That's an Archdevil of the Nine Hells, May!  No holding back in this fight!"
For once, she sounds scared.  The wind generated by her spell is enough for May to glide on to a new location, but the barbed devils' barbs slice her a little for moving.

A barbed devil sneers, <Supernal>"So...  The vaunted champions of the gods have come to rescue a lich!?  This is bad comedy."

It blasts Raichel with a fireball so intense, it dazes her!  It then steps past her smugly and boasts, <Supernal>"Welcome to a taste of Hell.  More to come after we drag you there alive!"
 GM, 841 posts
Fri 11 Mar 2016
at 08:13
Scales of War: Throne of the Stone-Skinned King
Timothius spreads his arms and says with a creepily soft voice and an equally soft smile, "You just volunteered to be the first to be taken down. Nobody attack anyone but him, please. And Mittens; don't be afraid." Holiness and celestial essence burst from Timothius, rewriting the room into a sparkling, rainbow-crystal substance with what look like orbiting stars inside. He moves aside and says, "The rest of you bad guys; rest until it is your turn to get a chance to fight us."

With that, the angel, Dispater himself, and the other barbed devil all look horrified as they realized they simply can not bring themselves to do these heroes any harm.

Timothius gives the barbed devil a bright smile. "You were saying?"

Standard: Hallowed Ground
ACTION POINT! +4 to non-dmg attacks
Standard: End to Strife v Angel, Dispater, Barbed 2.
 CRIT(48)! Miss(31) Reroll 3's CRIT(48)! Hit(33)!
 The targets can not attack until the end of the encounter or until attacked.

 player, 643 posts
Fri 11 Mar 2016
at 08:19
Scales of War: Throne of the Stone-Skinned King
May raises her eyebrows at Mittens and says, "Huh. OK. This'll be interesting..." only for Timothius to seem completely unafraid... or off his gourd. Either way, May decides to at least trust Tim's decision. She fires off an arrow at the barbed devil, which plinks off his barbs. May then heads to the south and blocks passage to the only door out of here. "If they can't attack me, then they can't leave with me in the way."

Standard: Maysic Ranged v Barbed 1. Miss(33)
Move: Block door

 player, 812 posts
 For narrating
 and convenience
Fri 11 Mar 2016
at 08:42
Scales of War: Throne of the Stone-Skinned King
Dispater heads over to Timothius.  A training dummy attacks him!  He doesn't bother dodging, but the attack bounces right off his iron-hard flesh.  Once next to Timothius and able to attack, he offers a buddy-buddy arm-around!

<Supernal>"I'm impressed on a number of levels, heroes.  Please pardon the rude welcome of my servant.  Would you spare him, please?

"Needles, Sharps, stand down."

The barbed devils both look shocked at the order, but apparently obey.

The angel looks angry with the devil.

Annoyed with May, the second barbed devil steps away from her.  A training dummy attacks it!  It doesn't dodge, but the attack just bounces off.  Now able to attack, it glares at May, but does nothing more.

<Supernal>"By your command, master."

This message was last edited by the player at 08:49, Fri 11 Mar 2016.

 GM, 1868 posts
Fri 11 Mar 2016
at 08:49
Scales of War: Throne of the Stone-Skinned King
Mittens just stares, jaw agape.  "Um... what do we do now?"
 player, 1283 posts
 Crossbow of SCIENCE...
 Or MAGIC? I always forget
Fri 11 Mar 2016
at 09:07
Scales of War: Throne of the Stone-Skinned King
  "We do what we came here for, while the only onlooker that matters considers it not his problem."

  That said, Kyle approaches the barrier and brushes aside a third of it's power "Hmm, perhaps it's stronger from the inside?"  He keeps his crossbow at the ready should the Angel take violent offense at the party. Or Mittens shoots it first.

OOC: One auto success for the barrier. (three more needed).

If Angel remains hostile.
Angel HP: 306-33=273

 GM, 1869 posts
Fri 11 Mar 2016
at 09:15
Scales of War: Throne of the Stone-Skinned King
Mits heads over to kinda cover Kyle while he works on the prison.


The angel turns an angry look at May, spreading its wings threateningly, <Supernal>"Step aside, whelp!"

(( Intimidate 23 ))
 player, 617 posts
 Lightning Reflexes
 50,000 volts worth
Fri 11 Mar 2016
at 20:18
Scales of War: Throne of the Stone-Skinned King
Raichel says, "Watch who you're calling whelp! May has faced down two exarchs of your god without flinching. What would that make you?" Her voice rumbles over the whole room as though she were the voice of thunder itself. While she doesn't succeed in intimidating the angel, she at least succeeds in letting him know this group is far from the kind he can intimidate.

Raichel does the May-stomp to put out the flames. Her whole body crackles with electricity, her hand in a claw-like fashion as she looks ready to unleash lots more lightning.

Because of wording, Chris is right. This room specifically has the ability to let the badguys get "attacked" as per the condition of the daily power. Though I'm guessing the dummies didn't succeed on their attacks as they would do 10 dmg and push the target 1 square, so Chris did what I like doing on misses sometimes and flavored it as "hit, but didn't hit hard enough". Which I've been doing more lately because we're up against badguys who are just plain tough.

Rai take 5 dmg
Superior Will Save throw: 1 fail.
Readied Action: Thunderstroke v Angel
 Trigger: If the angel gets hostile.
Save throw: 15 no longer dazed or on fire
Intimidate: 23

Raichel HP: 100 - 5 = 95

This message was last edited by the player at 21:03, Fri 11 Mar 2016.

Monster Intern
 Intern, 50 posts
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Fri 11 Mar 2016
at 21:06
Scales of War: Throne of the Stone-Skinned King
The barbed devil growls, looking ready to strike at the drop of a hat. For a brief moment, Timothius' trick really scared him witless because wtf can command a room full of enemies to not be able to attack! But seeing the boss figure out how to undo things put the devil back into the mindset needed to fight.... even if he realizes his boss might not allow it.
 GM, 842 posts
Fri 11 Mar 2016
at 21:19
Scales of War: Throne of the Stone-Skinned King
Timothius looks over at Dispater with an "I don't know wether to be annoyed, weirded out, or both" look, so it winds up coming out a WTF expression that quickly cools down to just suspicious. He doesn't pull away from the arm-around, though. "Alright, Dispater... or whoever you are... we're here to set Vlaakith free. I don't know what you can offer besides a truce to make sure you and yours don't get hurt, which I respect, but we are going to do what we came here to do. Zetch'r'r and Tiamat have reached just a bit too far and now the good gods have taken notice. And the ability to end your violence? I can do that again. And again. So... what is it you are offering?" The scary part is, Timothius isn't bluffing. He has four anti-attack powers. Five if Break the Spirit counts.

Readied Action: Rebuke Violence on Dispater
 Trigger: Dispater unpauses combat (either by ordering the enemies to attack or by attacking himself)

 player, 644 posts
Fri 11 Mar 2016
at 21:31
Scales of War: Throne of the Stone-Skinned King
May stares at the angel and says, "Which taunt to pick.... Oh! I'm so scared. What should I do? Oh well it looks like he scared me SO bad, I'm frozen in place and can't move like he asked! Nono... I know! Well since you asked me SO nicely, I'll step aside." She begins stepping aside and then steps back where she was. Her footwork looks flawless, though. As if the perfection of deftness. "Nono... I could always be mature and be all" dork/retard voice is go! "Hurhurhur! Shtep ashide whelp! Hurr!" she pinches her nose and says, "Why don't you MAKE me! Nya-nyanny boo-boo, stick your head in doo-doo!" back to normal tone, "Nono... I could do the hero thing and say; try and stop me, Curr! Nono... Oh! What would Mittens do?" that last part said as she grins at Mittens.

Minor: Quicksilver Stance
Readied Action: Come and Get It
 Trigger: Any enemy does anything May perceives as aggressive.

 player, 813 posts
 For narrating
 and convenience
Sat 12 Mar 2016
at 04:56
Scales of War: Throne of the Stone-Skinned King
Dispater looks like he's barely containing immense amusement at May's taunting the angel.

"No deals.  I have the answer I came here for.  But before I go, I will offer you a quick history lesson and a warning.

"That person there is not Vlaakith, as I'm sure you've already gathered, what with her not looking even remotely lich-like.  No, it is a reincarnation of Gith.  Gith is the warrioress who turned the slave race of the Mind-Flayers against their own masters.  She and the first Vlaakith struck a deal with Tiamat.  They would submit to her if in exchange she would aid in their 'crusade' to find and kill the surviving Mind-Flayers.  To seal the deal, Gith surrendered herself willingly to one of my cells, where she has stayed all these many centuries, bound by the terms of the contract.

"But Tiamat broke the pact.  Because she and her puppet Zech'r'r abandoned the crusade to invade your world instead, Gith was no longer bound by the contract and promptly broke out.

"Now as you can imagine, she was incredibly powerful in the old days, and has learned a thing or two in the long time since.  Not the least of which is how to manipulate you into doing her dirty work for her.  As she is now, she has the power to crush everyone in this room by herself then go on to wipe out Vraxanault and Zech'r'r.  But she chose instead to wait for you to 'rescue' her so she could 'relent' to a cease-fire in exchange for you killing them for her.  All part of her long-term scheme to elevate her entire bloodthirsty race to godhood.  I'm sure you can imagine what that means.

"Release her and you will bring about the doom of all things.  But probably not in your lifetime.  Now I'm sure you know that my kind do not like the idea of the ruin of creation, but since this vessel is just a shadow of my true self, I can do nothing to stop you, much less her."

Timothius can tell that everything the devil has said so far is entirely true.  The part about 'the doom of all things' he believes to be true, if slightly exaggerated.  Probably figures he can convince the other archdevils or perhaps even the gods that Gith poses enough of a threat to be taken out before she achieves her ultimate goal.

Meta fun:
"The worst thing the characters can do is to attack
Vlaakith. She might not yet be at full strength, but
her power rivals that of an archdevil, and she should
prove a deadly enemy, far stronger than what the PCs
could hope to face at their level. Vlaakith isn’t interested in slaughtering the party, and so she takes them
all alive to use later against Zetch’r’r."

 GM, 1871 posts
Sat 12 Mar 2016
at 04:58
Scales of War: Throne of the Stone-Skinned King
Mits would be laughing her butt off from May's taunts, but she does not like a devil touching her lil bro, much less an arch-devil.

"Hey!  Hands off!"

Dispater complies.  The devils look embarrassed and furious that their boss is being ordered around.  The angel of Tiamat is livid.  So angry, it is rendered speechless for the moment.

This message was last edited by the GM at 04:59, Sat 12 Mar 2016.