Chapter 1 - Ashes to Ashes.   Posted by GM.Group: 0
Garland Van Burke
 player, 106 posts
Sat 22 Jun 2019
at 02:00
Re: Chapter 1 - Ashes to Ashes
Garland shakes his head side to side slowly. "I believe we should secure those cursed items in some kind of vault. They may provide those spirits with greater power...although they may also be the weapon to destroy them. There is no way to be sure but I would rather be cautious...I believe we should also seek out the ghost of Vessoria Hawkren and see why she was being targeted by the Splatterman. All of these lost souls must be put to rest in time as no one, no matter how terrible or rotten deserves to walk the earth for all etenity."

He looks around the table especially at the acting sherrif and Father Grimburrow. "That said, we must also deal with the smaller spirits as well. The haunts. Does the sherrifs office or temple have death records from when the prison was still active? They may provide us clues in how to stop the smaller spirits from manifesting. "
Sir Constantine Godalming
 player, 142 posts
 Chicanery?
 Count me in
Sat 22 Jun 2019
at 12:03
Re: Chapter 1 - Ashes to Ashes
“Sage advice to not go back until early morning.  Can you provide us with holy water for another foray into the prison?”

Weighing the needs of the town and his own mortal limitations he judges the best course of action...
“Perhaps this night I should walk with the guards and acolytes in defense from restless spirits; to do so I will have to rest from now until true nightfall.  This I will do unless others have need of me, currently.”

SCG is referring to 8 pm as true nightfall

This message was last edited by the player at 12:22, Sat 22 June.

Darcon
 player, 67 posts
Sat 22 Jun 2019
at 20:37
Re: Chapter 1 - Ashes to Ashes
In between chatting to the aged ex-wizard and now schoolteacher about the nature of magic and updating him on the situation they were facing in the town, and browsing through his wares a bit, Darcon finally said, "Indeed, we would be most appreciative if you were to send a missive to your colleagues and ask for their expertise." Up to three weeks was a long time, but then they had no idea how long their investigation and its presumed result would take.

Darcon also queried the elder mage further about their current situation. "Are you sure you cannot offer any more assistance, such as anything you may recall about the prison and the unquiet spirits that have risen up suddenly? Are there any specific types of spells that may help in facing them? And do you know anything of the Whispering Way and why it may be involved?" the mage asked earnestly, hoping the old mans years of arcane experience might result in the sage advice.

Later, back at the house during lunch he listened intently to the conversation and Grimurrow's disclosure on what help he and his acolytes could give. Kendra's mention of the cursed items made him nod and he asked the priest, "Yes, we have a few cursed items that could be of much use to us, such as a spellbook I could put to good use. Any chance you might be able to remove the curse upon it with your clerical magic?"
GM
 GM, 307 posts
Mon 24 Jun 2019
at 19:23
Re: Chapter 1 - Ashes to Ashes
Alendru nodded and enlisted Darcon and Kendra's help in transcribing copies of the rubbings they had taken at the prison. As they worked they chatted about magic and Alendru answered their questions as best he could.

"The fire at the prison was before my time. Well, before I came to live in Ravengro." He said with a rueful chuckle.

"I cannot tell you of the spirits that haunt the place specifically, the return of those from beyond the grave was never my area of study. Transmutation, that's where the most interesting topics can be found. But let me think.

Ghosts are notoriously difficult to defeat. Even if you use magics against them they lack effectiveness, and ordinary weapons will not harm a ghost at all. Magical weapons will, partially, and spells of force have full effects on ghosts. A casting of ghostbane dirge can help. In fact I think I have one..."


He wandered back through the stacks and returned with a pair of scroll cases, two scrolls of ghostbane dirge.

"Ah, I had two.

But to defeat a ghost is only a delay, they will re-form several days later. You must use a weapon with some significance to the ghost itself to truly defeat it, or otherwise resolve the issue that keeps it bound to this plane.

As for the Whispering Way, faugh."
He waved dismissively.

"They are a myth. Oh, their order was powerful thousands of years ago. They served the Whispering Tyrant and at one point were poised to threaten all of Golarion. But their power was broken by the Shining Crusade. They're just a legend now."

He quickly penned a letter to one Edjurios Mott, a professor at the Lepidstadt university, and enclosed the copy of the rubbings.



The scrolls of ghostbane dirge are 2nd level spells, available for 150gp each. Ghostbane dirge temporarily makes ghosts take half damage from mundane attacks and full damage from magical attacks.




Father Grimburrow nodded sagely and sipped at his tea.

"What records we have are of course still available to you, but with all the research you have been doing and the notes that you recovered from the prison itself I daresay that your knowledge of the Harrowstone inmates is as complete as any.

I will make you as much holy water as I can, I will only need the components."
He said.

"We wouldn't be able to carry all of the notes with us, but we can take the inmate records, at least." Kendra chimed in. "And Shara left behind the spirit planchette when she was called away, we could use that to contact the spirits in Harrowstone."

At Darcon's suggestion Father Grimburrow inspected the cursed objects gingerly, magically probing them but trying to touch them as little as possible.

He grimaced.

"These are indeed cursed. Dark items, not to be handled lightly. At least they lack the compulsive component that many cursed items share, if you use these items you will not be compelled to keep them. You can discard them after use.

Alas, my own power is not great enough to cleanse them. One of the fathers in Caliphas would have access to such magics though, a power spell to break enchantments of this type."




Father Grimburrow will cast any spell that he can to assist you. He can cast up to 2nd level spells but he doesn't have access to remove curse or break enchantment, which are lvl 3 and lvl 5 spells respectively.

You can take a portion of the notes with you to the prison, which will enable you to make a knowledge check on specific haunts with 15 minutes of research. You'll get +7 to this check, +4 from the notes and +3 from Kendra's aid another.

Father Grimburrow (or Garland) can cast Bless Water to create holy water, the material component is 25gp worth of silver dust.

GM
 GM, 310 posts
Tue 25 Jun 2019
at 18:10
Re: Chapter 1 - Ashes to Ashes
Our heroes bid farewell to father Grimburrow, took care of their purchases and last business about town, and then set off for Harrowstone.

Packing up notes and provisions--even for a several day stay--didn't take long, and the hike up to the prison was a little under an hour. It was late afternoon before they arrived at the prison gates.

The abandoned prison was just as they had left it. Rotting doors swung ajar, the runes could still be seen scrolled around the prison's base, and abandoned windows glowered out onto the prison yard like empty eye sockets. The great entryway yawned open, waiting for our heroes to decid wherein to venture.




Sir Constantine Godalming
 player, 147 posts
 Chicanery?
 Count me in
Tue 25 Jun 2019
at 23:15
Re: Chapter 1 - Ashes to Ashes
SCG takes in the scene of the prison in the light of day and the place is no longer as foreboding as it once appeared to him, perhaps it was his renewed strength or perhaps it was the fact of the light of day.  Though the darkness of night seemed nearly the same to his eyes.

He readies his heavy wooden shield and secures the straps. he likewise readies his morningstar, the leather strap set over his wrist in case he lost his grip.


"Stay behind me and be aware of dangers.  I say a quick lead up to where we were before and then entry into the remaining internal chamber."

In other words door number 4....
GM
 GM, 312 posts
Wed 26 Jun 2019
at 18:55
Re: Chapter 1 - Ashes to Ashes
Constantine moved cautiously but quickly through the areas of the prison already explored, making quickly for the open area to the west of the prison.

The first chamber that he entered was a relatively large room with benches along one wall and a recessed area with a drain, moldering buckets, and waist high dividers. There was a wheeled cart in the center of the room, partially destroyed, on which moldy uniforms were rotting away.

After an induction in the meeting hall it was here that prisoners would be stripped, deloused, and issued a rough prisoner's uniform.

An examination of the chamber showed no haunts or other threats, and nothing of value save the rotting uniforms and a pair of rusty manacles.

As they explored Garland's hackles rose. The other heroes missed it, but the cleric's ears pricked as he moved to the north of the chamber. He could hear as if from a great distance, ever so faintly, the sound of a woman sobbing. The sound seemed to be coming from a nearby chamber, although it was difficult to pinpoint its location. Perhaps to the north west.







Garland can hear ghostly sobs very faintly, perhaps from the direction of door 2, 3, or 5.

Explored Rooms:
A1 - Entryway
A2 - Foyer
A3 - Auditorium
A5 - Property Room
A6 - Offices
A7 - Warden's Office
A8 - Chapel
A9 - Stairwell
A10 - Furnace Room
A11 - Induction Chamber - You are here

Unexplored Rooms:
1 - ???
2 - ???
3 - ???
5 - ???
6 - ???

Garland Van Burke
 player, 110 posts
Wed 26 Jun 2019
at 20:49
Re: Chapter 1 - Ashes to Ashes
"Hold" he said, stopping his trek through the prison as he stood there, closing his eyes and taking in a deep breath as he attuned his senses to the surroundings. It was unmistakable, a soft weeping in the distance. "I hear someone...crying I think." he said softly before stepping past Constantine. "This way."

OOC: Im going to guess 2 would be the best way to go
GM
 GM, 314 posts
Thu 27 Jun 2019
at 19:10
Re: Chapter 1 - Ashes to Ashes
The ghostly weeping grew louder as our heroes drew close to the door, although it was still faint. It seemed to fade in and out, as if the source was moving at a distance, but it was definitely coming from the door that Garland indicated.

The door was locked, the old iron keyhole long since rusted shut, too corroded to peep through. Like most of the doors in this section of the prison the wood was charred and burnt. Age and rot had also taken their toll, and despite the lock it was easy to force the door open.

The room was a workshop. Workbenches were scattered throughout the room and a grindstone stood against the far wall. There were leatherworking and metalworking tools, now rusted and useless, as well as moldering mounds that may have been piles of raw materials. An anvil stood against the far wall near a cask of rusty nails.

A forlorn tangle of fabric was heaped in the center of the room. It was old and faded but ornate, it may once have been a fine dress. And from the center of that pile extended a skeletal arm, slack in death, reaching towards the door as if beseeching it. Even now long, faint scratch marks could be seen on the interior of the door.







As our heroes moved cautiously into the room there was a sudden rushing as of a great wind, although nothing ruffled their cloaks or caught at their clothing. It rushed through the chamber carrying with it the sounds of a woman sobbing. It peaked and then ebbed quickly, fading to nothing.

In the center of the chamber a shimmer appeared in the air, rising from the bundle of cloth on the floor. It wavered and solidified into the ethereal figure of a beautiful woman. Her hair and skin were transparent and tinged blue, as was the tattered dress that drifted around her as if tossed by a great wind. Her face was tear streaked and she wept--great, wracking sobs that shook her frail shoulders with grief.

She had the look of some spirit or apparition, and yet she did not attack the party as such horrors were wont to do.

Instead she peered around, scared, confused, barely seeming to see our heroes. Her hands rose to her face as if trying to ward away something unseen.

"It's...so hot. So much...smoke." Her voice echoed emptily, ghostly and haunting.

At length her eyes seemed to focus, to fix on the adventurers clustered in the doorway.

"Who...are you?"







Explored Rooms:
A1 - Entryway
A2 - Foyer
A3 - Auditorium
A5 - Property Room
A6 - Offices
A7 - Warden's Office
A8 - Chapel
A9 - Stairwell
A10 - Furnace Room
A11 - Induction Chamber
A12 - Workshop - You are here

Unexplored Rooms:
1 - ???
3 - ???
5 - ???
6 - ???

Garland Van Burke
 player, 111 posts
Thu 27 Jun 2019
at 19:27
Re: Chapter 1 - Ashes to Ashes
Garland took a few steps forward, fixing his morningstar back upon his belt and holding out the wooden holy symbol depicting Pharasma's spiraling star. Showing her who he was as much as speaking it. He had faced a spirit once before with Petros by his side and he knew they were fickle beings, at one moment ready to speak and at the next ready to lash out with murderous intent. He was ready for either outcome. "Hello my lady, I am Garland Van Burke. I am cleric of Pharasma's faith. May we speak?" he asked softly, the tone of his voice full of kindness and pity.
Sir Constantine Godalming
 player, 149 posts
 Chicanery?
 Count me in
Fri 28 Jun 2019
at 13:06
Re: Chapter 1 - Ashes to Ashes
“I am Sir Constantine GodAlming, How May we free you from your plight and render aid to you?”
GM
 GM, 315 posts
Fri 28 Jun 2019
at 18:37
Re: Chapter 1 - Ashes to Ashes
The ghostly spirit flinched back from Garland's holy symbol and seemed to shift and fade, becoming momentarily intangible before re-solidifying as she retreated farther into the room.

"You must be...the new guards. The old guards are all dead. Everyone dead. The fire...they locked me in here. They said it was dangerous, it was for my own protection. They said I was hysterical. I just wanted...I only came to see why he was late to dinner." Huge tears rolled down her cheeks, vanishing as they dripped off.

She seemed confused, now focused on our heroes, now unaware that they were there. She drifted about the room. As if seeing them for the first time she started and stared at them. A sudden look of panic swam over the grief on her face.

"You must flee this place! It isn't safe for the living living here, not any more. No! No, you must stay. You must aid me! You must!

My husband was the warden of this prison. He died, but even in death he held sway over the inmates. He kept their spirits chained here. I am trapped here..."


She drifted to the wall, pressed her hand against it. It seemed that she could not move beyond the very room where she died.

"I could sense him...down below. He was...so close. And yet I could not see him. Could not hold him in my arms. But I could sense the control that he exerted over the unquiet spirits of this place. He kept them trapped here.

But he his gone now! His spirit was ripped away from this place! I have...tried...to do what he did. To keep the evil spirits of this place contained. But I'm so tired. I'm growing so weak. One of them...one of them is attacking me. He will surely destroy me and then they will all be free."
She gasped a wracking sob.

"Please! You must help me to control them!"
Garland Van Burke
 player, 112 posts
Sat 29 Jun 2019
at 02:08
Re: Chapter 1 - Ashes to Ashes
Garland hung the holy symbol back upon his shoulder, his hands folding neatly behind him as he stood and listened carefully to her. "My lady, my goal here is to free you all. I wish nothing more then every spirit in this ancient place to find their final rest. I also know of the spirit that has been attacking you. I believe his name is  Professor Hean Feramin also known as the Splatterman, the recent events in Ravengro match the murders he commited in life though I was not sure how you two were involved till now."

He walks forward toward the body, looking over it in detail. "I am sorry that you have endured this last century of torment but I hope to change things. I assume the other spirits you speak of are the Splatterman, The lopper, Father Charlatan, The piper of Ilmarsh, and the Mosswater Maurader. Can you tell us anything about them? Where we might find them? How we might fight them? and most of all, how we might let them pass on to face Pharasma's judgement?"
Sir Constantine Godalming
 player, 151 posts
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Sat 29 Jun 2019
at 17:55
Re: Chapter 1 - Ashes to Ashes
SCG scratches his head and knows not what to think....he awaits some additional information from the sobbing lady
Darcon
 player, 69 posts
Sat 29 Jun 2019
at 20:11
Re: Chapter 1 - Ashes to Ashes
Darcon stood behind Constantine and Garland, gripping his staff tightly and listening to the ghostly woman's sobbing. Her story was moving, yet horrifying at the same time.
The mage could but guess at the anguish the fire had caused to have made so many unquiet spirits trapped within these burn walls.

"Can you confirm if the spirit attacking you is Hean Feramin? If so, did you notice any difference or lessening of his attacks in the last few days?" Darcon asked cautiously, wondering if their exorcism of Gibs had any affect on the spirit of the Splatterman.
GM
 GM, 316 posts
Mon 1 Jul 2019
at 17:55
Re: Chapter 1 - Ashes to Ashes
"Yes, I can sense five distinct presences here in the prison. I can feel them, malevolent, hateful, yearning to be free of this place. It is all that I can do to keep them trapped here as my husband once did. Although I can sense them it already seems that you know more of them than I do, I sense nothing more than their hate and their power. I know not what their names are, or how to defeat them.

Two of them are in the cell blocks above us. The other three, the most powerful, are below, in the dungeons."
She gestured to the ceiling and to the floor.

"I...I did feel a lessening of the attacks upon me in the last several days. It is a respite only though, I can still feel this...splatterman...lurking below. Surely his power is not broken.

If only I had...if only..."
A sob wracked her but she choked it off with a look of broken determination.

"It was my husband's force of will and his authority over this prison that kept the evil spirits caged for all of these years. If you could bring me the symbol of his authority over the prison, his badge of office, I would be able to gain some of his control.

I am not strong enough to defeat the evil spirits myself, but I can keep them from re-manifesting. Go forth, defeat the five spirits that haunt this place, and bring me my husband's badge. Do this, and I will banish the evil in these walls permanently!"
She commanded. Ghostly tears still rolled down her pale blue cheeks, but there was iron in her voice.
Sir Constantine Godalming
 player, 153 posts
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Mon 1 Jul 2019
at 18:42
Re: Chapter 1 - Ashes to Ashes
"Thank you ma'm."

SCG looks determined, and having not realized that any cells were upstairs, thinks about it...

"Finish clearing this level, then upstairs for the two and then down below for the three?"
Garland Van Burke
 player, 113 posts
Tue 2 Jul 2019
at 00:05
Re: Chapter 1 - Ashes to Ashes
Listening carefully Garland was guarded, knowing that when it came to spirits things were never easy and much like people sometimes there was more to know then they were saying. "If we stop the spirits and return the symbol of office to you and if we banish the darkness from the prison, what then? Will you also move on, or will this plan force you to linger here in this world?"
GM
 GM, 318 posts
Tue 2 Jul 2019
at 18:14
Re: Chapter 1 - Ashes to Ashes
"I...I do not know." The ghost said sadly, seeming to waver like a shimmer in the air. "I've been trapped here for so long. Yearning for so long. I only know that the evil spirits of this place must be stopped. Do this, you must! You mussst!"

Her words grew fainter and fainter, fading as if into the distance she slowly disappeared. Her presence could still be felt, keeping her husband's vigil over the prison, but the apparition in the workshop faded away.

Kendra stepped out of the room, her eyes glistening. She scrubbed at her cheeks but nodded in as businesslike way as she could manage to Constantine's suggestion.

"Where should we look first?"
Sir Constantine Godalming
 player, 154 posts
 Chicanery?
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Wed 3 Jul 2019
at 14:05
Re: Chapter 1 - Ashes to Ashes
SCG points clockwise...
"The reamining doors on this level."


Door 1 first
GM
 GM, 319 posts
Wed 3 Jul 2019
at 18:48
Re: Chapter 1 - Ashes to Ashes
Our heroes moved to the door to the right of the workshop. It was as charred and rotten as any in the prison and unlocked, they were easily able to push inside.

The room was as macabre as any they had seen so far. The center of the floor was taken up by a roughly made wooden chair bolted to the floor with rusty pinions. Leather straps at the arms, legs, and back were stiff with age and left no doubt that an inmate would be restrained here. A cold brazier sat in one corner. On a workbench before it was a collection of long handled brands, each stamped with a letter or a number.

In this chamber new inmates were branded with the prisoner numbers that they would wear for the remainder of their lives. Usually short lives, the headsman's axe fell heavily in Harrowstone.

After only a few minutes of exploration the faint smell of charred flesh began to drift through the room, a barely detectable undercurrent. The smell was faint, and only Keanala's nostrils flared from the scent. Just in time she was able to shout a warning to her compatriots.

So it was that none were flatfooted as the brazier flared to life and the branding irons began to glow with white hot radiance. They rose into the air and began to whirl about, swirling around the rough chair in the center. Suddenly they burst outwards, streaking towards the party.

The other three were galvanized by Keanala's warning, dodging away or raising shields to deflect the white hot pokers. Only Keanala herself was unable to move in time. The smell of burning flesh filled the chamber for real, displacing the ghostly smell, as a brand pressed itself against her flesh.

With a clatter all the swirling brands fell to the floor. The horror animating them dissipated. Each was cold to the touch. The only clue that the haunt had attacked was the agony of a charred P burned into Keanala's flesh, just below her left collar bone.



A haunt manifests in the room which Keanala perceives before it triggers, so nobody is flat footed. Burning brands shoot out as +1 flaming arrows, one of which hits Keanala. Keanala, you take 9 damage.






Explored Rooms:
A1 - Entryway
A2 - Foyer
A3 - Auditorium
A5 - Property Room
A6 - Offices
A7 - Warden's Office
A8 - Chapel
A9 - Stairwell
A10 - Furnace Room
A11 - Induction Chamber
A12 - Workshop
A13 - Branding Room - You are here

Unexplored Rooms:
2 - ???
3 - ???
5 - ???
6 - ???

This message was last edited by the GM at 19:03, Wed 03 July.

Sir Constantine Godalming
 player, 155 posts
 Chicanery?
 Count me in
Fri 5 Jul 2019
at 12:57
Re: Chapter 1 - Ashes to Ashes
"In some instances it seems the haunt is targeting specific people in our group.  Do you need ease in your burn?"

SCG moves to lay hands upon the burned flesh....
Garland Van Burke
 player, 114 posts
Fri 5 Jul 2019
at 19:16
Re: Chapter 1 - Ashes to Ashes
Garland stops, waiting to see if the haunt remanifests itself with a spell ready. Should nothing remanifest he takes a moment to search the room, trying to see what remains that might cause it to stay here. "We need to take care of these smaller spirits as well as the large ones. "


12:16, Today: Garland Van Burke rolled 23 using 1d20+3.  perception check.
GM
 GM, 321 posts
Fri 5 Jul 2019
at 19:19
Re: Chapter 1 - Ashes to Ashes
The haunt in the branding room had expended itself, temporarily, and our heroes were free to continue their exploration of the prison.

They cautiously entered the room closest to the workshop (A14), fortunately nothing accosted them. The room was a laundry, moldy piles of prison uniforms were stacked in rolling carts and large wash tubs stood against one wall. Casks that had once held lye and other chemicals had long since corroded through, spilling their powdery contents to stain the stone floor. There was a tin chute at the far end of the room, it was just large enough to squeeze through and looked as if it led to the cesspit behind the prison.

The next room (A15) was a privy. Wooden benches had been sanded smooth, charred now, with openings that led to a sewage trough. It too emptied into the midden, but was far too narrow to traverse.

The last unexplored room (A16) was filled with moldy cots, old cabinets, and several private sleeping rooms. The decor made it obvious that this had once been the prison's infirmary. While more care had been given to the guards the manacles near several of the beds made it plain that prisoners had been treated here as well.

While the linens and instruments were too rotted and rusted to be valuable a search of the room revealed a locked cabinet near the back. The lock held firm but the charred wood of the door was easy to pry open. Inside was a wax sealed crate full of supplies.

With the remainder of the floor explored our heroes gathered at the stairwell in the center of the prison. The stairs leading down into the dungeon had been collapsed by the deadfall so many years ago, the only way down was through the collapsed elevator shaft in the training room (A4). The stairs up were perfectly serviceable, leading up onto the dark upper floor of the prison.







You explore the remaining rooms in the prison but aren't attacked by any further haunts or creatures. The items that you find in the infirmary are:

2 healer's kits
3 vials of antitoxin
2 vials of antiplague
3 doses of bloodblock
3 doses of smelling salts
2 vials of soothe syrup
4 potions of cure light wounds

Explored Rooms:
A1 - Entryway
A2 - Foyer
A3 - Auditorium
A5 - Property Room
A6 - Offices
A7 - Warden's Office
A8 - Chapel
A9 - Stairwell - You are here
A10 - Furnace Room
A11 - Induction Chamber
A12 - Workshop
A13 - Branding Room
A14 - Laundry
A15 - Privy
A16 - Infirmary

Sir Constantine Godalming
 player, 156 posts
 Chicanery?
 Count me in
Sat 6 Jul 2019
at 01:59
Re: Chapter 1 - Ashes to Ashes
“Each of you should have a healing potion and the other stuff as well.  I trust if it is needed you will use it to aid me.”

SCG stares up the dark staircase looking with dark vision to see any dangers.

He also has his shield tilted in the event of falling debris

This message was last edited by the player at 02:01, Sat 06 July.