Burova, the Capital in Darkness.   Posted by DM Visceri.Group: 0
DM Visceri
 GM, 747 posts
 the Heavyhanded
 the Bringer of Loot
Thu 16 May 2013
at 22:20
Re: Burova, the Capital in Darkness
The cultist was quiet for a stretch as he watched the bodies of his fellow cultists being thrown into the pit by the paladin of Sarenrae. He would be next if he didn't tell these madmen what they wanted. True, his master would enact a fate worse than death if he found out that he planned on divulging information to the enemy but that was if the master found him. He had other problems on his hands other than a simple rat. He would flee to the north and begin a new life. For now, he would preserve the one he had here and now.

"The master doesn't hire us..." the man said nervously, beginning to open up marginally. "We volunteer our souls to the black flame and the service of Neruul and his servants. The master is one such servant. As for why he wants you dead, I can only speculate. You have interfered with his plans on multiple occasions and are likely too close to home for him to let you live any longer." The man spoke quickly and nervously, looking over his shoulder as if he expected something to jump out of the shadows and take him at any moment now that he had begun to divulge information.
Solomon
 player, 288 posts
 Suli
 Paladin
Thu 16 May 2013
at 22:31
Re: Burova, the Capital in Darkness
Now that the cultist's tongue seemed to have loosened Solomon cast a Zone of Truth spell.  As he cast the spell he flicked the charm on his wrist causing an audible ping to reverberate around the room.  "Know now that all words spoken will ring only of truth,"<aqua> he says to his companions as well as to the cultist.

<aqua>"I, Solomon, will not hamper your freedom to leave once you fully answer all our questions to the best of your ability.  Of course hamper us in any way again, and all bets are off.  I will see to it your body and soul burn in Pelor's cleansing light, and failing that, I will see to it you are named as traitor to your cult and cause.  First, name your master.  Second, tell us where he can be found."

DM Visceri
 GM, 748 posts
 the Heavyhanded
 the Bringer of Loot
Fri 17 May 2013
at 00:24
Re: Burova, the Capital in Darkness
"H-he," the man seems to struggle momentarily with his words, likely trying as hard as he can not to revela the name of his master, "he only goes by the master. B-but we all know who he is. The stories of his rise to power were taught to the Verdammten during our initiation. It didn't take much to connect the dots. H-his name...is..." visibly struggling against the words coming out of his mouth, what escapes next comes out in only a whisper, "Edrich Manstein." The man now looks truly worried as his gaze shifts back and forth nervously. "If you are suicidal enough to search him out, the White Ziggurat is two days to the southwest of the city in the mountains. You will know the path when you see it..." he trails off as Solomon kicks the last body into the pit and begins to eye the cultist as if he is next. "I have answered you questions. Make good on your promise and let me free! If I do not leave, he will find me for what I have told you!"
Renard Waywynd
 player, 164 posts
Sat 18 May 2013
at 22:26
Re: Burova, the Capital in Darkness
After Solomon is done questioning the man Renard turns his head, first to the left then to the right, glancing at the others in case they have any questions for their captive.  When nobody is forthcoming he speaks up on his own, the glow fading from his body as he lets go of the divine light, "Are there any other groups like yours after us?  What sort of resistance can we expect at this White Ziggurat.  Are there any hidden ways in?"  He was eager to hear the answers, though he was wary of asking too many questions.  He also knew well and good that as soon as the man left this place everything he told them would be relayed to this Edrich Manstein.
DM Visceri
 GM, 749 posts
 the Heavyhanded
 the Bringer of Loot
Sat 18 May 2013
at 22:57
Re: Burova, the Capital in Darkness
Half chuckling to himself, he looks Renard in the eyes, his confidence growing once again, "You have no idea what you're up against. Any other groups? There's an entire cult that has been ordered to kill you if given half the chance. Stumble into the wrong store, the wrong tavern, the wrong whorehouse, and you will find yourself besieged by Verdammten. The same goes for the White Ziggurat. The master's most loyal and dangerous undead abominations reside there, guarding him day and night, unsleeping. But the undead are not his only protection. The leader of our cult as well as her elite necromancer dread guards keep his council, waiting for the opportunity to strike. And that is just the residents of the stronghold. The Ziggurat itself if a labyrinth of death traps. The building itself will rise against you. You will die there."  The man's initial boltering courage had turned into a rant of wide-eyed desperation and pride. The indoctrination of this Verdammten must have been powerful for a man betraying it to speak so highly of it.
Kuldar Balak
 player, 275 posts
 Story Points: 2
Tue 21 May 2013
at 19:12
Re: Burova, the Capital in Darkness
Kuldar gave something of a snort when the man began rambling about how great his leader was and how fruitless it would be to chase after him. He looked down to Kilgur who made a similar sound before the Bard picked himself up and walked over to the cultist. "Aye lad, we may well die takin' yer big baddy down- but at least we'll live that long. All you get is a disappointin' death where you realize most a' what ya stood for and did will just be undone by us, or some other band of adventurers." He pulled his hammer back and was ready to send the man's head airborne like Solomon had earlier to Inori, but then he stopped. "Hmph. Death is too good fer ya, I get da feelin' most of you'd be happy to die and serve yer god or whatever delusion it is ya be livin' with."

Kuldar turned away from the man as if leaving him under the watchful gaze of his comrades. "I say we keep him breathin', then turn him in. Even if this cult isn't directly connected to this city, dey're causin' trouble and the law can at least work with us in that regard. And da mages here are much better at interrogation den us I'd suspect, so somebody gag the blasted fool-" Kuldar turned on his heel and brought the other down with quite a bit of force on the cultist's left hand aiming to shatter bone with steel-plated Dwarven foot. "-I'll get his hands."

This message was last edited by the player at 19:13, Tue 21 May 2013.

Renard Waywynd
 player, 166 posts
Tue 21 May 2013
at 19:21
Re: Burova, the Capital in Darkness
Barely suppressing a smirk at Kuldar's gruff treatment of the cultist Renard turns away from the man, letting someone more talented in the use of ropes and knots tend to his binding.

"Should we find the nearest guards and hand him over or do you think it would be better to take him directly to the Hochburg?  If he's got friends in high places he might easily find himself back on the street whatever we do..."  He lets out a sigh which is accompanied by the irritating rattle of the chains around his neck - Jeeves doing the poltergeist thing.
Raznik Tayn
 player, 223 posts
 Human Desert Nomad
Tue 21 May 2013
at 19:24
Re: Burova, the Capital in Darkness
Raznik watched the brutality with a little disgust, but did nothing to signify his objection to it. "I would be rid of him as soon as we can," he said in response to Renard's query, as he moved forward to offer to bind a gag on the man, tearing a strip of cloth from the cultist's robes.
Avianna Maher
 NPC, 13 posts
Tue 21 May 2013
at 19:27
Re: Burova, the Capital in Darkness
Avianna had been standing back, watching the proceedings up until this point. She didn't know much about this cult or what they wanted with these people but she had an idea. "You could always have The Shroud Guard hold him for now. We have places that we can keep him secluded and make sure he doesn't get up to any trouble. Granted, that would mean me taking him to our headquarters which I have yet to be given permission to bring you to so I would have to go alone and leave you to conduct your investigations alone. I have shown you the entrance in though and everything else up there should be easy enough to figure out. Just don't stand out too much if you can help it and you won't have too many people get in your way."
Solomon
 player, 291 posts
 Suli
 Paladin
Tue 21 May 2013
at 22:43
Re: Burova, the Capital in Darkness
Solomon could not really offer a suggestion.  He had given his word that he would not hamper the cultist's freedom.  Luckily, that would not stop the others from doing so.  "I would hate to backtrack now that we found ourselves to door."  It was hinted that he preferred Avianna's suggestion.
Renard Waywynd
 player, 167 posts
Sat 25 May 2013
at 23:48
Re: Burova, the Capital in Darkness
With a nod of agreement in regards to both Avianna and Solomon's statements Renard nudges at the cultist with his foot, wary of any more tricks or games the man might try to pull, "Alright, take him back to the headquarters.  If he tries to fight break his other hand.  If he should find himself dead for whatever reason make sure to burn his corpse."  When the man doesn't respond to his nudge he aims a swift kick at the fellow's ribs, "Get up, soulless cur."
Kuldar Balak
 player, 276 posts
 Story Points: 2
Sat 25 May 2013
at 23:58
Re: Burova, the Capital in Darkness
Kuldar nodded to Avianna. "Aye lass, ye can take this one- but make sure you take all the proper precautions for casters an' other mystical surprises." He put his weapons away and patted Kilgur while feeding him a small shred of dried meat.
Avianna Maher
 NPC, 14 posts
Sun 26 May 2013
at 00:44
Re: Burova, the Capital in Darkness
"Don't worry," she said as she took a quick moment to mercilessly break the man's fingers on his un-smashed hand, "I know what it takes to keep these magical types in check. I could use someone who knows more about magic than I to assist me though. Perhaps Skrag would be kind enough to accompany me? At least far enough so that others from the Guard can help me take him into our headquarters?" The man screamed as she did so just as he had when Kuldar smashed his hand just moments before. Skrag sat there and considered her request through the screams before nodding. "No good to let man get away if a true dragon can prevent it. I will help." Hopping up from where he had been listening to the interrogation, he fell in line with the rogue. "Without saying too much in front of our friend here, seek out our mutual friend where you saw him last and he will get word to me if you need my assistance. For now, I can only wish you good luck and may your shadows be free of danger." Without much more to-do, Avianna lifted the man from his feet and led him up the stairs slowly and out into the street, out of sight.
Kuldar Balak
 player, 279 posts
 Story Points: 2
Wed 29 May 2013
at 02:29
Re: Burova, the Capital in Darkness
Kuldar nodded to Skraag, he had to admit he still wasn't fond of the dragon but he'd proven himself more reliable than any Kobolds encountered so far. "Best of luck to the bot' of ya, we'll keep in touch as we learn more." He turned and continued through the way Avianna had been leading them down.
Solomon
 player, 292 posts
 Suli
 Paladin
Wed 29 May 2013
at 02:50
Re: Burova, the Capital in Darkness
Stuffs the pile of stuff gathered from the cultists into his backpack and quickly follows the others.  He didn't know if the cloaks rings and amulets would come in handy or not, but it could.  Of course if captured once more by the king's men it would certainly make things worse.

This message was last edited by the player at 02:52, Wed 29 May 2013.

DM Visceri
 GM, 752 posts
 the Heavyhanded
 the Bringer of Loot
Mon 3 Jun 2013
at 03:37
Re: Burova, the Capital in Darkness
The now slightly diminished group made their way through the tight secret entrance that would lead them into the mercantile and noble district of Estage Paar. At the end of a hundred foot tunnel was a ladder that lead up to a grate concealed by a stack of crates in an alley. The group was able to raise themselves out from their secret entrance without much notice, the first luck they had seemed to have today. As they made their way out of the alley, the first thought that sprung to mind was that they had somehow crossed over into a different city entirely. The prosperity and wealth displayed here was extravagant, and even that could be considered the understatement of the century. Colorful banners hung from every lamp-post advertising the upcoming bout in the arena, set to take place the following day at midday, shop windows displayed expensive wares and masterfully crafted merchandise, the streets were paved with well-laid cobblestone, free of mud, and the people. The people themselves were walking mannequins for luxurious coats of rare animal pelts, gold-embroidered cloaks, and fine silks. If this were to be the state of all of Burova, it would truly be considered a prosperous city. Alas, it was a mere dozen feet from crushing poverty and a void where hope was seldom found but at the bottom of the bottle.

Several inns presented themselves with colorful signs hanging on their fronts along the main thoroughfare, hawkers singing praises for their food and hospitality to anyone who would listen. Further down was a signpost that pointed out that the guild chapter houses were around the east side of the hill and that the estates of the nobility in Derevaan could be found closer to the peak. Easily visible poking up from above the storefronts was the Colosseum itself, flags flapping in the wind that had the residents of the prosperous district holding tight to their hats. It had yet to rain today but even now that the sun should have been well into the sky, the thick clouds overhead refused to let sunlight through.

OOC: So what's the plan? Where do you start?
Renard Waywynd
 player, 168 posts
Mon 3 Jun 2013
at 06:22
Re: Burova, the Capital in Darkness
Renard scowled at the opulence on display as if looking upon a man beating a small child.  It was inconceivable that these people did not know the suffering going on in the lower district yet they seemed to have absolutely no concern.  He turns away to face the group and compose himself, lest he draw any unwanted attention, "What was the name of the man-beast we killed?" his voice was strained with barely-concealed anger, "We should start with his house and see what we can find, and quickly.  The very existence of this place makes me weep for all is good in this world."  His knuckles turn white as they grip the chains around his neck, and it was not clear if the rattling was from Jeeves or from his own shaking hand.
Raznik Tayn
 player, 224 posts
 Human Desert Nomad
Mon 3 Jun 2013
at 22:33
Re: Burova, the Capital in Darkness
Raznik had watched the others depart in silence, his mind introspective. Noticing Solomon collect up the cultists' belongings, he volunteered himself to carry them in his sack, looking for a chance at redemption, or perhaps just seeking self-destructive punishment.

As they emerged into the light of day, Raznik looked about incredulously, but paused at Renard turned to speak to them. "What was this beast you speak of?" he asked, a hint of concern in his voice.
Solomon
 player, 293 posts
 Suli
 Paladin
Mon 3 Jun 2013
at 23:18
Re: Burova, the Capital in Darkness
"Abelard Erland," Solomon answered.  He seemed confused by the sudden shift in city style and wealth than angered by it.  He couldn't understand why the people would horde so much while those in the lower levels had so little.  The place was truly different than the desert home he was used to.  "I doubt we'll find a banner waving in the wind portraying the abode of evil cultists."
Kuldar Balak
 player, 280 posts
 Story Points: 2
Mon 3 Jun 2013
at 23:23
Re: Burova, the Capital in Darkness
Kuldar cleared his throat and felt a little embarrassed he had forgotten to catch Raznik up with current events. "Right lad, our first night 'ere in town a monster make a ruckus out in da streets. We took it down and it turned to a man before our eyes, some curse or spell likely the cause. Unfortunately da king found us guilty of murderin' the poor bastard since nobody else saw 'im as a beast, name was 'Lord Abelard Erland'."

After looking around Kuldar stepped off to the side and used a cantrip to clean his armor, clothes, and body, before taking off in the direction of one of the Inns. "I'll get ta work, you lot try to not look suspicious, or come along and rent a room. Business often gets people ta talk."

16:22, Today: Kuldar Balak rolled 29 using 1d20+14. Diplomacy: Gather Information.

Looking for information on Abelard Erland and his family, the monsters, anything on our evil cult, and what ever else is the buzz in this part of town.

This message was last edited by the player at 23:24, Mon 03 June 2013.

Raznik Tayn
 player, 225 posts
 Human Desert Nomad
Tue 4 Jun 2013
at 00:35
Re: Burova, the Capital in Darkness
"A noble? What do you mean nobody else saw him as a beast? Was he a shape shifter?" Raznik asked as he followed along beside Kuldar.
Kuldar Balak
 player, 281 posts
 Story Points: 2
Tue 4 Jun 2013
at 02:12
Re: Burova, the Capital in Darkness
"My best guess is somethin' akin to a lycanthrope, somethin' dat turns its prey but they always go back to their original form when they expire. The fight was quick with only one enemy, witnesses who rushed out saw only a man."
Raznik Tayn
 player, 226 posts
 Human Desert Nomad
Tue 4 Jun 2013
at 04:32
Re: Burova, the Capital in Darkness
Raznik seemed disturbed by Kuldar's words, but said no more on the matter for the moment. Instead he allowed himself to fall behind as he returned to his sullen thoughts.
Solomon
 player, 294 posts
 Suli
 Paladin
Sun 9 Jun 2013
at 15:31
Re: Burova, the Capital in Darkness
As Kuldar entered a tavern Solomon followed.  He simply had yet to come up with another plan of action.  He sat at a table cradling a mug of hot hard apple cider.  He stared at the wisps of steam as they rose from the cup's edge.  He seemed lost in thought.  Eventually, when prying ears had fallen further away from their table he divulged those thoughts to the rest of the group in hopes one of them would have answers to his questions.

"Why would folks from this part of the city join a cult that worships death and destruction?  These folks seem to have everything:  power, prestige, wealth.  Why would they worship a deity that wants to take all that away?  I could understand if the lower inhabitants joined, but...It just doesn't make sense."

He looked at the inhabitants of the room seeing if any of them wore rings or amulets similar to the ones they found.

"I'm thinking about heading to the church of St. Cuthbert.  Since these cultists dress in robes and regalia people may have seen them.  Rumors would fly.  Rumors cause concern, and those with concern tend to take them to priests and gods.  I may take my concerns to a cleric to see how he reacts.  I would be willing to bet the cultists have a mole in the church.  If we could catch that mole....  If nothing else it will keep me busy until Kuldar works the room."
Renard Waywynd
 player, 169 posts
Mon 10 Jun 2013
at 07:53
Re: Burova, the Capital in Darkness
Barely able to conceal his disgust for these people living so well with such misery in such close proximity Renard quietly follows behind.  He was keen to let the others take the lead here as he was much too distracted by the open displays of wealth that shouted out the greed of this place to all who cared to see it.  Their task here was to stop this undead menace, and if doing so would make the lives of the poor in this city better then that is where he would focus his energy.

"If the entire church is corrupt it might be difficult to find a cult mole.  I still think we'd benefit from a quick investigation of Erland's lair - er, home." he corrected himself unconvincingly, "If he has any family, friends, or fellow cultists staying there they might be able to lead us to what we seek.  Either way, where you go I go and you can count on my magic at your back." he tried to sound pleasant at that last part but his mood in this place was foul enough to spoil even his sense of camaraderie.