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09:43, 17th April 2024 (GMT+0)

The Blackguard of Arcania.

Posted by GMFor group 0
player, 494 posts
Vigor 14/34
Scholar, Spheres of Might
Sun 26 Nov 2023
at 23:30
  • msg #384

Re: ACT 1: Awakening; Chapter 5: The Misguided Guide

 Irfan rolled 19(8) using 1d20+11.  Perception if not a option to take 10.

 Irfan rolled 13(10) using 1d20+3.  Intelligence Roll.

This guy, Romco your father (figure). Not that it matters to you right now.
Romco Aolp is an anagram for Marco Polo, He is heavily disguised, but having known him for a very important part of your life, those memories burned into you, yeah you can see past the disguise.

Irfan rolled 18,5 using 1d20+7,1d6.  Knowledge engineering.
Anyway, no traps, this place looks VERY structurally sound. Great care has been taken to protect against fire hazards. The chair Marco is sitting on seems afixed to the floor.

Rage at being abandoned, Indignant at being lied to, Disgust that he would show up again well up in Irfan. He really wanted to see Loki murder him, but there was more to gain and lose here. It made senses atleast, the weird kwon books, the advanced knowledge. He wasn't just some collector, he was a Kwon spy to begin with, The man had probably been grooming him. The alchemy, the mechanical puzzles, tools to distract and harm.

Though one shouldn't look that confident unless they know something you don't, and the basis of that belief was the man before him now.

Irfan stops and takes stock of the room but if anything was amiss it was the chair being anchored to the floor. That didn't make any sense, did he have some way of manipulating the room? Or was the chair part of something thing bigger. He couldn't see anything from here that pointed to it though. The biggest threat from Loki would have magic, maybe some kind of hidden barrier?

This was Loki's show though, Irfan was here to help guide things towards Loki heading to the Kwon base, so he decided to let things play out looking for a chance to interfere. His gut told him Loki was holding back, looking to get anything useful from this situation besides simple revenge. Romco hadn't egged him on, or given him a excuse yet though. Was he stalling.

Irfan uses a move action to perceive, Then readies a standard action to Flashbang Romco if he runs.
GM, 557 posts
Tue 28 Nov 2023
at 01:34
  • msg #385

Re: ACT 1: Awakening; Chapter 5: The Misguided Guide

Romco, or rather Marco, put down his cigar, put down a piece of jewelry he had been polishing, and locked eyes with the kingpriest "Vat iz it? It's been noisy for quite zome time... Zo it vaz you, vaz it?" he demanded, not even noticing you apparently.

Having recovered from barging in on the unsettlingly calm and confident merchant (especially when all things considered), Loki's regained his resolve. His hands clenched into fists but remained at his sides as he started speaking through a strained, calm voice, "So you're Ramco Aolp, huh?" the kingpriest's eyes scanned the well-dressed but otherwise unimpressive-looking aging man.

-"Yes, I am certainly Romco, however-"
-"Then I'll get straight to the point-" Loki interrupted the man, his composure eroding with every word "-Where is Helen and Hana?!" he barked in the fury of the Loki you had come to know and hate (due to recent circumstances) love.

There was a long, dramatic pause during which a battle of mettle waged before the two man. The atmosphere between them was so intense you wouldn't be surprised if it caught on fire. Then finally Marco responded with, "...Who?" a blank expression replacing his face.

This topped Loki over the edge, "DON'T PLAY DUMB WITH ME!!!" he screamed as the room was suddenly engulfed in a tornado (cast kinetic field). All the trinkets and accessories and priceless works of art and the Exalted only know what else were ricocheting all over the room, china and chandeliers were smashed into pieces, shards flying everywhere. Anything that could break did break.

But this storm had 2 eyes. Loki and, for some reason, Marco. Both untouched by the chaos. You? Not so much (take 4 dmg). "I know you kidnapped the wingheld princesses!" Loki bellowed again as he reached out his palm in a gesture you (and a recent unfortunate bouncer) knew far too well for all the wrong reasons. However, this time no helpless victims were flung, levitated or force-chocked. You could see the kingpriest straining, beads of sweat appearing on his forehead, cracks forming on the floor around the chair Marco was sitting on, but otherwise the merchant was just fine and remained seated right where he was. Finally, the kingpriest had to relent, letting his hand, his breath coming out it short, quick rasps.

"Oh. You mean the princess," Marco spoke again now that things were calm (enough) for his words to actually be heard. "Yes, it iz true I did take on zuch a person on my ship-" it was honestly quite startling to hear him just come out and admit it, "-But I did nozing anything like kidnapping her!" he vehemently denied, "I merely transported her," he said, quite comfortabe with that statement. "Alzo, I have no idea who dis Ana is, zat is a first for me," he added as an afterthough.

This...definitely threw the barbarian for a loop, "W...W-What do you mean??" not knowing how to make heads or tails of that statement.
-"Zer iz nothing more to say," Marco said nonchalantly, "Ze fellows from ze Kwon asked ze princess to acompany zem," he stated. Everyone waited for more. "Zo she did," the merchant clarified that was the fullstop of the sentence.
This message was last edited by the GM at 01:36, Tue 28 Nov 2023.
player, 495 posts
Vigor 14/34
Scholar, Spheres of Might
Tue 28 Nov 2023
at 06:37
  • msg #386

Re: ACT 1: Awakening; Chapter 5: The Misguided Guide

"...Who?" a blank expression replacing his face.

The same could be said for Hana, but that isn't the full truth. Irfan didn't know if she has some contact with the Kwon but he didn't put threats to others above being used to make her more amicable.

" He said that he only transported your fiance, and that she choose to leave willingly just because the Kwon asked her to." Irfan rephrased without the false accent. "Surely she left her guards behind and hasn't been in contact since because she is simply enjoying their hospitality so much."

But this storm had 2 eyes.   (knowledge Arcana?)


Spoiler text: (Highlight or hover over the text to view)
(Irfan rolled 19 (11) using 1d20+8.  knowledge Religion.

This message was last edited by the player at 06:39, Tue 28 Nov 2023.
GM, 558 posts
Tue 12 Dec 2023
at 22:40
  • msg #387

Re: ACT 1: Awakening; Chapter 5: The Misguided Guide

Loki turned and gave you a very baleful look, clearly not appreciating the sarcasm right now.

While the kingpriest was clicking his tongue in annoyance, the merchant king slash former explorer extraordinaire looked around his suite in annoyance, muttering disapprovingly "So violent."

-"So you really don't know anything?" Loki pressed the man, narrowing his eyes but you could tell in his voice he wasn't expecting a different answer.
-"I do not ask questions of doze who pay me. Zat is my pride as a trader," he replied, and you did not need to be an experienced courtier to know that was a load of crock, "She vas quite willing to go though. An yes, her entourage did go with her. I saw zem all enter ze cursed crossway tower myself," that however wasn't. At least not completely.

Breathing out a long breath, and proverbially venting out some of his steam as if a kettle, some of Loki's wrath was making room for a more rational course of consideration, "Well at least we have conformation that she entered the Southern Kwon Citadel. Unless she's been held there this entire time, it's almost guarantee she's been taken across the ocean. And since I have no intention of going there the long way around by boat, not to mention I'm 99.9% sure Hana is there right now awaiting for the next crossing, our next destination is clear."

The kingpriest finished and locked eyes with the merchant once more. The silence stretched out. On and on. The tension so thick you could smear it on toast.

-"Well good luck with dat," Marco shrugged and made a motion with his hand like you could show yourself out, then picked up a piece of paper and pretended to continue doing what he had been doing before your minor interruption, as if all of this was just another mundane everyday occurrence.

The expected explosion from Loki didn't come. Instead he started laughing. The kind of laugh you'd be having if you saw your ambition fulfilled, but more subdued. "And you're ganna help me get there."

-"And why vould I do zat?" Marco said with an annoyed sneer.

Loki did not reply, and you couldn't see his expression since he had his back turned on you, but suffice it to say your adopted father's sneer did not live long. Leaning back on his chair, he assumed a much more serious and somber attitude, "Alright, let's talk business."
GM, 559 posts
Wed 13 Dec 2023
at 23:27
  • msg #388

Re: ACT 1: Awakening; Chapter 5: The Misguided Guide

Computer has died on me (writing from phone), probably won't post till I get that fixed.
player, 496 posts
Vigor 14/34
Scholar, Spheres of Might
Sun 17 Dec 2023
at 06:27
  • msg #389

Re: ACT 1: Awakening; Chapter 5: The Misguided Guide

"Alright, let's talk business."

Well Evil Irfan had gotten what good Irfan wanted, though at much worse hospitality then he had wanted. He had already thrown the bargaining chip he had, though he figured this would take more leverage then just money. Fortunately, Evil Irfan wasn't above burning bridges and exposing secrets. They were the ones asking to be thrown to the wolves, Irfan just had to sell enough of how much Romco didn't want them around to tell stories, without tipping off Loki.  THEN again, Loki might like the idea of being thrown at the Kwon Fortress.

As for the business, "Very well, firstly for the untidy entrance We offer (Lonely one's Scale) (can irfan lob it on a take 10?) to the decorator, If I remember correctly he still works from this address. Secondly we seek the same courtesy you showed her Lady Helen, (insert time frame requirement within 2 days?, lowball the time), I'm sure your friends would be delighted at a chance of completing their wedding set. Enough to overlook any strong armed actions of a poor merchant such as yourself. Thirdly We won't mention this unfavorably to any of this to people such as Aven Buraka or others."

"Welcome to my home. I am Evna Abraku," he finally speaks after a long pause. ooc: If this game was in real time I would have waited for some back and forth, but for the sake of some brevity I will go on a more longwinded monologue. "As I'm quite sure you've surmised already, I am not an alchemist. Or at least I should say not just an alchemist. That's more of a hobby really. But tell me, who are you, stranger? And why have you come to my city?  You see, I have an eye for talent. I pegged you from the moment I laid eyes on you as more than just a street urchant of a wanna-be trader out to set it big and stumbled upon this place by happenstance. Such talent rarely goes unnoticed so at first I thought you may have been an agent sent by a guild. The bigger ones know of me, and yes, I hold a secret seat at the union so we have an understanding, but honor among thieves is just a myth. A smaller up-and-coming guild might pick up on signs and trails and send someone to investigate.

3rd Level Feat: Throw Anything:
GM, 560 posts
Tue 19 Dec 2023
at 01:00
  • msg #390

Re: ACT 1: Awakening; Chapter 5: The Misguided Guide

Might wanna switch to the new rpol site and get acquainted with the interface since this one will be shutting down on the 23rd.

Marco Polo, or Ramco Aolp as he goes by now, catches the scale easy enough. Frowns for a moment as he studies it until he realizes what he's holding. He pocketed it but wasn't quite done just yet, "Very vell. But under zertan conditions.

Un, ze Kwon don't know I took you zer. I vill smuggle you zer undetected. I'll even give you our best VIP room.
Deux, you vill owe me a favor zat I vill call upon in zer future.
And trois, I don't know how you got entangled with him but you must cease all relations with Aven Buraka. Zat misguided man vill get us all killed.

So, do we have ze deal?

Looking to your right, Loki wasn't voicing any complaints. The 1st worked in his favor anyway since his title of Kingpriest wasn't quite up to par with his actual skills (sure he was powerful when compared to the average mage, but untouchable he was certainly not). The 2nd he couldn't care less when the chances of rescuing Hana and finding Helen were right within his grasp. And the 3rd one? That wasn't even an issue for him. And quire frankly neither was it for you. You could always lie to the man in you ever needed that dreamer Alchemist again, it's not like your former mentor had anything to bind you with.

"Deal," said Loki.

-"Excellente. I vill require but a day to get ready, after zat ve can leave whenever your lordship vants."
player, 497 posts
Vigor 14/34
Scholar, Spheres of Might
Wed 20 Dec 2023
at 07:23
  • msg #391

Re: ACT 1: Awakening; Chapter 5: The Misguided Guide


You may spend 1 minute covering an object with camouflage netting. Make a Survival check with a –10 penalty and use the total as the Stealth check result for the object. Creatures who fail a Perception check against this Stealth DC do not recognize what the object is and usually treat it as a natural part of the terrain. For example, you can conceal a wagon as a rock or patch of brush. Covering a Large object requires two nets. Covering a Huge or Gargantuan object requires five nets and takes 10 minutes of work, and the Survival check penalty is –20 instead of –10. Camouflaging a Colossal object depends on its shape but generally requires at least 10 camouflage nets and takes 1 hour of work, and the Survival check penalty is –30 instead of –10.

Camouflage netting  20 gp; Weight 5 lbs.


Sorcerer’s Spirits
Source PPC:P&P Price: 300 gp  Weight: —

DESCRIPTION: This silvery liquid amplifies magical energies.

EFFECTS: For 1 hour after drinking this tincture, treat your caster level as 2 higher for the purpose of determining spells’ durations and ranges. The liquid unsettles the stomach, imposing a –1 penalty on Fortitude and Reflex saves for the same duration. Whenever you fail a Fortitude or Reflex save while under these effects, you must succeed at a DC 20 Fortitude saving throw or become nauseated for 1 round.


Prowler’s Palliative

Source PPC:P&P Price: 300 gp Weight: —

DESCRIPTION:This pitch-black liquid slows your heart rate, putting you in an almost trancelike state.

EFFECTS: For 1 hour after drinking this tincture, you gain a +2 alchemical bonus on Stealth checks, you can use Stealth while moving at full speed without penalty, and the DCs for Intimidate checks to demoralize you is 2 higher. The tincture’s sedative nature causes you to take a –4 penalty on Strength-based skill checks and a –2 penalty on damage rolls for the same duration.


Alluring Philter

Source PPC:P&P Price: 150 gp Weight: —

DESCRIPTION: This simple, rosy liquid smells of fresh flowers and perfume.

For 1 hour after drinking this tincture, you gain a +2 alchemical bonus on Diplomacy checks, and if you fail a Diplomacy check to shift a creature’s attitude by 5 or more, the creature’s attitude toward you doesn’t worsen. The increased pheromone production makes it difficult to think, causing you take a –2 penalty on Intelligence-based skill checks for the same duration. Additionally, creatures with the scent ability can detect you from twice as far away for the same duration.



Censer, Toxic

Source PZO9487E

Price 115 gp; Weight 1 lb.

This ornately etched censer has a small hidden compartment under the heat source that can hold 1 dose of poison. When in use, the censer’s heat source indirectly heats the poison, causing it to mix with the burning incense and allow the poison to permeate the air, filling a 20-foot radius centered on the censer. The poison’s type changes to inhaled, and it is effective for 5 minutes before it is entirely burned off.



Source PZO1110

If you drink a vial of antitoxin, you get a +5 alchemical bonus on Fortitude saving throws against poison for 1 hour.


Liquid Ice

Source PZO1115

Also known as “alchemist’s ice,” this sealed jar of crystalline blue fluid immediately starts to evaporate once opened. During the next 1d6 rounds, you can use it to freeze a liquid or to coat an object in a thin layer of ice. You can also throw liquid ice as a splash weapon. A direct hit deals 1d6 points of cold damage; creatures within 5 feet of where it hits take 1 point of cold damage from the splash.


Gel, Phosphorescent

Source PZO9430

Price 45 gp; Weight 1/2 lb.

This sealed vial contains 1 ounce of milky white gel. Once the vial’s seal is broken, the liquid reacts with the surrounding air and begins to rapidly heat up, glowing like a candle for 1 hour. After that hour, the oxidization of the chemical agent is complete, and the gel dissolves in a white-hot flash, dealing 3d6 points of fire damage to anything directly in contact with it. A single dose of phosphorescent gel can coat 6 square inches of a surface. Multiple doses of phosphorescent gel can be used to coat larger surfaces, but the amount of damage dealt does not stack. The conflagration occurs in an instant, and the fire generated doesn’t spread, though it can be used to ignite a larger explosive such as a fuse grenade or pot of oil.


Paste, Shrieking

Source PZO9430

Price 35 gp; Weight 2 lbs.

Created by suspending the spores of a shrieker mushroom in a thick mixture of wheat paste and vermiculite, this thick sludge comes in a soundproof, stone container. Shrieking paste creates an obnoxious piercing noise when exposed to even minute amounts of movement or light. This makes applying the paste a very noisy endeavor at best. However, once the paste is applied and left alone for several rounds, it once again becomes silent. Thereafter, any light source or movement within 10 feet of the paste causes it to shriek for 1d3 rounds. A single container contains enough shrieking paste to coat 1 square foot of a surface. If left undisturbed for several weeks in a dank, lightless setting, shrieking paste might eventually grow into a colony of shrieker mushrooms.


Fuse Grenade

Price 100 gp; Weight 1 lb.


This hollow clay container holds a small charge of black power and a slow-burning fuse. Lighting the fuse is a move action; 1d3 rounds later the grenade explodes, dealing 2d6 points of bludgeoning damage and 1d6 points of fire damage in a 10-foot-radius burst (Reflex DC 15 halves). You throw a fuse grenade as if it were a splash weapon.


Shard Gel

Price 25 gp; Weight 1 lb.


This vivid green gel instantly crystallizes into needle-like shards upon contact with the air. You can throw a flask of shard gel as a splash weapon. A direct hit deals 1d4 points of piercing damage as the shards penetrate the target’s flesh. The target’s square and each square adjacent to it are covered in shards that function like caltrops. The caltrops last for 5 rounds before dissolving into harmless green sludge. Any effect that deals sonic damage to an area (such as sound burst or shout) immediately destroys all gel shards in that area.


Skill(s) Craft (alchemy) DC 20.


Firework, Skyrocket

Price 50 gp; Weight 1 lb.


When lit, this foot-long wooden tube begins to shake and emit a handful of white sparks, shedding light as a torch. One round later it takes flight, moving at a speed of 90 feet for 1d6 rounds before loudly exploding in a burst of light and sound, dealing 2d6 points of fire damage in a 10-foot-radius burst (Reflex DC 15 halves). Anyone who takes damage from the explosion is either blinded or deafened (50% chance of either) for 1 round.

Scarf, Filter

Price 5 gp; Weight —

Made of heavy material, this scarf filters out dust, sand, smoke, and other airborne contaminants. When worn over your nose and mouth, this scarf grants you a +1 resistance bonus on saving throws against inhaled poisons and other airborne effects that require breathing.


 [PFS Legal] Smoke cover
Source Dragonslayer's Handbook pg. 26
Price 75 gp; Weight 10 lbs.
Category Adventuring Gear
This small cauldron of alchemically treated tar gives off thick, acrid smoke when ignited. The smoke rises to an altitude of 25 feet, then spreads horizontally, creating an artificial smoke ceiling 5 feet thick. The smoke spreads to a 100-foot radius at a rate of 20 feet per round. The cauldron smokes for 5 rounds before burning out. After the cauldron finishes burning, the smoke lasts for 3 more rounds before dissipating. A moderate wind (11+ mph) does not affect the heavy smoke, while a strong wind (21+ mph) disperses the smoke in 2 rounds.

The smoke is entirely opaque, which means creatures above the smoke can’t see the ground, and those on the ground have a visual ceiling of 25 feet. Creatures on the other side of the smoke have total concealment (50% miss chance, and the attacker can’t use sight to locate the target).

Smoke cover is noxious, and any creature that begins its turn inside the smoke must succeed at a DC 18 Fortitude save or become sickened for 1d4 rounds. Previously sickened creatures that fail their saves are instead nauseated for 1d6 rounds. Creatures immune to poison are not affected by smoke cover’s sickening effects.

 [PFS Legal] Alchemical dye kit
Source Ultimate Intrigue pg. 236
Price 160 gp; Weight 6 lbs.
Category Alchemical Tools
This kit provides a variety of creamy liquids in glass jars, and allows you to temporarily change the color of your hair or skin to match that of a creature of any humanoid race. This includes exotic and unusual hues, such as gnome hair colors. If used as part of a Disguise check, this kit reduces the time required to create the disguise by 1d6 minutes (to a minimum of a full-round action), and halves the penalty to disguise yourself as a different race whenever such recoloration is necessary. Each use of the kit changes either hair or skin color. If you need to change both your hair color and your skin color, you must spend two uses of the kit to gain the benefit. Each dye takes 1 minute to apply (thus requiring 2 minutes to change both hair and skin color). Once applied, the colors are waterproof, and can’t be rubbed or burned away. An application of dye fades after 1d4+1 days unless removed earlier by magical means. Applying a new application of alchemical dye immediately covers and replaces a previous application. An alchemical dye kit is exhausted after 10 uses.

Portable hive
Source Antihero's Handbook pg. 28
Price 300 gp; Weight —
Category Alchemical Weapons
This large flask holds a swarm of angry wasps. A portable hive can be thrown as a splash weapon, and when it hits a grid intersection or a creature, a wasp swarm appears in a 10-foot-by-10-foot square at the point of impact. This swarm does not have the distraction or poison special abilities, and it disperses after 1d4 rounds. Crafting a portable hive requires a successful DC 25 Craft (alchemy) check
Craft (Alchemy) DC 25
This message was last edited by the player at 08:29, Wed 20 Dec 2023.
player, 498 posts
Vigor 14/34
Scholar, Spheres of Might
Wed 20 Dec 2023
at 07:34
  • msg #392

Re: ACT 1: Awakening; Chapter 5: The Misguided Guide

How much gold would Irfan a master master alchemist be able to whip up with extra resources, Renting out a Lab, possibly with underlings, and Horus'  aide.

2lv Knack: Rapid Alchemy: Craft Inexpensive alchemy items in 30 minutes, 15 with formulae.
                add Int to DC of Irfan's none-formulae alchemy items.
5th Level Feat: Master Alchemist: Craft alchemy +2, craft items faster.

1 dose Sorcerer's Spirit for Loki,
1 dose Prowler's Palliative for Irfan.
1 optional dose of Alluring Philter.

5 dose Anti-toxins Or buy. (might be buyable or craftable)
Minimum 2 Units Liquid Ice (might be buyable or craftable)
Minimum 3 Units Phospherous Gel (might be buyable or craftable)
Minimum 1 Unit shrieking paste (might be buyable or craftable)
Irfan can Class feature the Fuse Grenades
Shard Gel 1 or 2 Units  (might be buyable or craftable)
Smoke Cover 1 - 3 Units (should have to be made, military grade smoke)
Drow Poison 2-5 Doses
Sweet Dreams Drug 1-2 dose (should be on the drug market if it exists)
5 Skyrockets should be buyable (maybe even 20)

Salve of Slipperiness should be on the market.

Portal Hives are the hard sell.

Irfan negotiates for Romco to supply a alchemist shop(factory?) for the next 24 hours, so he can prepare enough items to throw the Kwon into disarray long enough for Loki to have a real go at riling the entire fortress up.

He also tries to Acquire the Salve of Slipperiness through Romco, while disguising the toxic censor in with the alchemy supplies procured.

Irfan has a shopping list of things he would like to have handy when they attack/infiltrate the fortress, including dark blue fabric for his gliders to help fade into the night sky,  Desert terrain netting for hiding the skimmer (unless Evil Irfan see no point.)

Otherwise Irfan intends to hide out in the alchemy lab to avoid Chico, and use the assault to rescue Hana as a excuse of why it's too dangerous to take him right now.

Irfan's Goals are to Distrupt the ritual for max Chaos, Get Loki to the Fortress, Convince the Kwon it was an attack,   get to Helen first if possible to ensure max tragedy.

Bonus points if he can get everyone captured AND time the Gel rockets to go off mid ritual, which he assumes should Climax at the Moon's Zenith.
This message was last edited by the player at 08:34, Wed 20 Dec 2023.
GM, 561 posts
Thu 21 Dec 2023
at 21:34
  • msg #393

Re: ACT 1: Awakening; Chapter 5: The Misguided Guide

Money and resources are not an issue. If you have the time to craft them, all those items are approved. You can also get that scholar item that makes your flashbangs into AoE effect that only affects 1 square (meaning an anti-swarm effect)

With the bargain struck, you both exited the premises, encountering the others along the way. Silent while they all petered Loki with questions, he motioned for them to follow him back to the hotel, leaving Ramco to deal with the mess he had caused.

Once back at your lodgings, the kingpriest gathered the "war council" so to speak, to catch them all up on decide on a course of action.

"Tonight I had a meeting with Ramoco and he has agreed to smuggle us inside the Kwon compound undetected. From there we're on our own. Now I'm thinking the Kwon are very very keen on keeping people out, and the fort is designed to repel invaders since this is their only foothold on our continent and the gate links directly to their capitol, BUT...I'm betting they're not expecting an attack from the inside. We will remain put until the cover of night, study their movements if we can. Then when close to midnight we move out. Stealth and speed will be key. Hana and the commander with his detachment are bound to be at the gate-site near midnight waiting for their passage through the cursed crossways for the capitol. This is the part where we strike fast and true, wrest Hana from their clutches and enter the crossway Wait to the Kwon capitol wait so we can stop save Helen. stop! Irfan will-STOP!!"

The whole table went silent, make that downright flabbergasted, as the kitsune very rudely and intrusively interrupted the kingpriest of the entire grasslands in the middle of his planning. He walked behind the counter. Took out some brandy. Poured himself a glass. Chugged it one gulp, "Hoooooo, <sub>ahhhhh,</sub> ssssss," he reeled from the sting of the potent alcohol. He hung there slumped for a few long seconds. The motioned with his hand "...ok, continue.".

-"R-Right," it took the entire table a bit to recover from that. Shaking himself a little, he refocused on the task at hand, "Anyway, as I was saying, Irfan here will create some nasty tricks, I'm guessing of the explosive kind, for our Kwonian friends which will be planted strategically before the the assault or dumped during the escape. They will, hopefully, do their thing after we are safely on the other side of the cursed crossway thus ruining the gate-site and preventing Hana's captor and the other Kwon from chasing up through. Again, hopefully, there will be a bit of a head start before the Kwon from the fortress can notify the mainland Kwon of what has transpired, which will hopefully be enough time to locate Helen and escape the capitol or at the very least hide. As for coming back...well I haven't gotten that far yet. Probably the old fashion way on a boat across the sea."

There was a long, pregnant pause as the insanity of this plan sank in.
"...I am very well aware how this all sounds, which is why I will completely understand if you won't want to help me do it."

Now this part had the table more reeling that the insane plan itself. Loki was humbling himself before all of you and asking (yes asking!) who will be willing to accompany him on a half-baked, bordering suicidal-trip. While he may have been very driven this entire time to rescue his beloved, this was a rare moment to glimpse under the veneer of rage and status as the highest authority he had to put up to keep everyone at a distance. There was a man under there. A caring and quite possibly kind man who valued life and others.
"I could sorely use all your help, especially you Irfan for the explosives. But I am prepared to do this alone. In fact I'm even thinking that once I get ahold of Hana I'd bundle her up in a force ball along with another keen invention of Irfans, a glider as I understand it, and throw her as high and far into the air as I can so she can glide far away to safety while I go to the Kwon mainland after Helen and-"

-"Are you kidding me?" It was Horus the one to interrupt him this time. The boy stood up proud, one foot in the table, confidently smirking with hands crossed across his chest, "Of course I'm coming with you to save Hana, in fact I'd like to see you stop me if you can. And I know miss Hana would be very sad if her sister remained missing, so of course I'll help with that too." wholeheartedly pledging himself to delve into certain doom if it meant saving the sisters from Pintherast.

-"I'm in," the bigger shock coming from Milkweed as he shrugged nonchalantly, at peace with the lunatic plan. "That's why you pay be the big bucks".

-"I'm going too," this one had everyone scratching their heads (and quite frankly you weren't sure you'd be accepting it if you didn't want to personally make damn sure he got on the other side of the gate and get captured by the Kwon. Heck you could even do some bombing of the Kwon capitol itself while you're there thus cement the war between the two nations).

-" don't have to. I hired you as a guide and you've done your job splendidly. More than anyone else could have given the circumstances now that I think back on it. Especially how I treated you," Loki said with no small shame, "But this is it. The finish line. There's nothing more I can ask of you. You don't have to risk your life anymore. Why would you do this?"

-"You still need me. The things I create isn't something one can just pick up and hope it works. Besides, I still want to see the world and no one from Hestia has seen the Kwon continent yet, so I intend to be the first. Plus you'll be paying me the big bucks too," you tried to come up with a reason that sounded compelling enough to not raise suspicion and tip your hand. Thankfully, you had plenty to draw upon from your old, naive, weak self before you saw the truth.

That was nothing to what happened next though, "Shifu says you are foolish and overconfident in your power if taking on so many and a captain all alone, you think you can. Shifu says all the help you can get, you will need. And enough, it still may not be. Shifu says all swept up in the tide of the Exalted, we are. And Shifu to see where it leades, wishes to see. So Shifu will help." The most enigmatic member of your party, with the least reason to risk life and limb, was agreeing to go. Horus' reason was, well, it's Horus we're talking about here. Milkweed, money to fuel his hedonism. You even managed to make a compelling argument. But this armored Cleaner?

And precisely because it was a Cleaner you made it a point to keep an extra eye on it while also keeping as much distance as possible. If anyone could foil your plans, it would be it.

The next day you wasted no time in exploiting the deal you made with your (unwitting) former mentor/father-figure.

You lost yourself in your work. Time ceased to have meaning. Your health? Pfft, couldn't care less. Food and water? Not necessary, you were still functioning. Fatigue? With your new, iron-like focus and drive it also had no effect.

When a figure -an intruder?!- appeared in the doorway of your laboratory though, you did have to stop. It was Marco, standing there with arms behind his back.

For a moment you feared you had overstepped the deal and he was here to complain or alter the deal or worse, call it off! But no, "Ah, I apologize. Don't mind me, pleaze continue," he motioned for you to keep working while he started strolling around, observing some of things you were crafting with great curiosity.

"You are very talented, non? Ver you perhaps Alba's weaponz maker?" then, not waiting for an answer as if it didn't really matter at the end of the day, he tisk-tisked, "What a vayst. That man with his foolish ideas. He vill get us all killed. I don't know why you are doing zis, you do zeem to be preparing a lot of fire az dey zay, but ze Kwon and ze Alliance are not to be trifled with, you do not know them like I do. Zer are secrets best left undisturbed. You should abandon this foolishness and come work for me. Let the crazy kingpriest charge to his doom. You know, you remind me of someone I knew long ago..." he stared off into the distance, his mind wondering off into past. Seems like he still hasn't figured out who you are. It seems these two days were "one of those days" where everyone's masks were slipping and you could see some of the Marco you knew all those years ago. At another time you would have dearly wanted to know what could change a man so much. Now? You couldn't care less.

Finally, as if realizing he had been rambling this entire time, "I came to tell you zat the my ship iz ready to depart whenever you want. You vill have to leave your zkimmer here. I vill hold it in zafe keeping until you come to collect it, no charge. Or I can zent it back to Yuzna to pick it up there, with a voucher," he informed you with a lot more formality, the merchant resurfacing again. Then he turned to leave the lab.
player, 499 posts
Vigor 14/34
Scholar, Spheres of Might
Sat 23 Dec 2023
at 05:55
  • msg #394

Re: ACT 1: Awakening; Chapter 5: The Misguided Guide

Finally, as if realizing he had been rambling this entire time, "I came to tell you zat the my ship iz ready to depart whenever you want. You vill have to leave your zkimmer here. I vill hold it in zafe keeping until you come to collect it, no charge. Or I can zent it back to Yuzna to pick it up there, with a voucher," he informed you with a lot more formality, the merchant resurfacing again. Then he turned to leave the lab.

Irfan has no concerns about escaping, or what happens after the ritual/day (technically Irfan is possessed, but the possessor could exit of their own will, Is this curse (meaningfully) different then the Curse in Shambalah? It feeds off magic right, What if it had the chance to Get into the ritual? It's essentially driving Irfan, with all his knowledge and guile.) The skimmer would be absolutely essential for escaping, and would help sell the attack part if revealed.

(I can assume trying to pressure him into sneaking the ship past is pointless/Irfan doesn't care enough to convince him to risk it. Is Irfan technically stacking up exhaustion status, that won't affect him until the possession is over?)

He didn't need to answer Marco, and didn't have a good idea on how to make things more interesting, so he left him leave under his own impressions. Arcadia was old and weak, that when for Marco as much as for Alba.

Now it was time for things to be put in motion. In other words, time to meet with Loki. Irfan could have restocked healing supplies, could have distributed them better. That wasn't this Irfan,  This Irfan had no qualms with performance enhancing drugs with side effects. He picked up the vial of Sorcerer's Spirits. It's effects helped mage users gather energy, but that extra energy could easily disrupt the wielder's system if agitated. A poisonous trump card, one the king priest would use if cornered, maybe even just out of pride, however it would make capturing him easier aswell, not that he needed to know.

Irfan brushed off his robes and make minimal efforts to make himself presentable before leaving the lab. The body grew weaker, but it would last, the next phase would be the hard part. How to survive the close proximity of being smuggled, well they probably wouldn't be canned like rats the entire time. He still had teller's book, studying that might be enough to stave off any questions or hassles that might present themselves. The day of reckoning approached, and that was reason enough for a celebration.

(please establish a solid countdown for when we get through being smuggled.)
This message was last edited by the player at 06:01, Sat 23 Dec 2023.
GM, 562 posts
Mon 25 Dec 2023
at 23:11
  • msg #395

Re: ACT 1: Awakening; Chapter 5: The Misguided Guide

Did you buy everything you need? Did you add everything to your sheet (including the Explosive Chemicals Kit)? Also a disguise kit might not be a bad idea.

Also, give me a Perception roll.

You and your party made their way to the skimmer docks. Suffice it to say, it wasn't difficult to find Marco's ship.

"He has an entire battleship?!" even Loki exclaimed as the others just went mute with awe at the behemoth of a craft. It was just like the ones you had seen at the skimmer graveyard except in one piece and pristine condition. "How has the Alliance not come down on his ass?!"

Granted, it had no armaments of any kind so it was technically there was no Battle in this Ship, but even so you knew this was illegal as all hell. A testament to Marco's connection and budget for bribery no doubt.

You made your way up to the deck while workers still moved many crates to fill the hold, and there awaited capitan Marco Polo. He even opted out for a change of attire to reflect his position.

"Vellcome aboard my ship. Izn't she a beauty?" he said with more than a little pride. "She can take us to ze Kwon fort in two dayz at top zpeed, but I recommend we slow down to 3 dayz. Zis way you vill arrive in the morning of ze day when ze gate opens zo you won't have to wait long. Lowers ze chances of being discovered, non?

ANYWAYZ, any questions before ve depart? I assume you have wrapped up all business you have in town, non?
player, 500 posts
Vigor 14/34
Scholar, Spheres of Might
Sat 30 Dec 2023
at 07:09
  • msg #396

Re: ACT 1: Awakening; Chapter 5: The Misguided Guide

Parade Armor25 gp201WornUsedIronian
^ Pathfinder Pouch1000 gp11Left ChestMagical 
^^ Sorcerer's Spirits300 gp-2xMagic PouchNewArcadian glass bottle
^^ Prowler's Palliative300 gp-2xMagic PouchNewArcadian glass bottle
^^ Alluring Philter150 gp-3xMagic PouchNewArcadian glass bottle
^^ Gel, Shrieking35 gp-5xMagic PouchNewArcadian glass bottle
^^ Gel, Phosphorous45 gp-10xMagic PouchNewArcadian glass bottle
^^ Gel, Shard25 gp-5xMagic PouchNewArcadian glass bottle
^^ Poison, Sweet Dream900 gp-2xMagic PouchNewArcadian glass bottle
^^ Poison, Drow75 gp-5xMagic PouchNewArcadian glass bottle
^^ Portal Hive300 gp-3xMagic PouchNewPaper hive, Magical
^^ Toxic Censer115 gp11Magic PouchUsedIronian Metalcraft
Quarterstaff- gp41CarriedScuffedLighting Rod, Ashwood
Dagger2 gp21CarriedGoodIron
Dagger2 gp21WornGoodIron
Traveler's Outfit5 gp21WornDustyArcadian
Thieves' Ring300 gp-1Worn, Left handNewBrass
Concealable Thieves' tools190 gp0.51Boot, RightNew 
Waist Pouch (Belt, Left)- gp11Left WaistGoodLeather
^ Flint and Steel- gp-2xLeft PouchUsed 
^ Mirror- gp-3xLeft PouchGoodArcadian Mirror
^ Wind Caller Compass4400 gp-1Left PouchMagicalOld Teller's
^ Goblet of Quenching180 gp11Left PouchMagicalOld Teller's
Waist Pouch (Belt, Right)- gp11Right WaistGoodLeather
^ Sling- gp11Right PouchGoodSheep Leather
^ 20 ? Gold20? gp ??Right Pouch  
^ Void Dust4500 gp 1Right Pouch3/3 UsesDesert Upwell Box, Old Teller
^ Twine1 cp0.51Right Pouch  
^ Liquid Ice40 gp22Right Pouch Arcadian Glassware
^ Liquid Blade40 gp21Right Pouch Arcadian Glassware
^ Explosive Chemicals Kit3000 gp21Right Pouch Scholar feature Upgrade
Bard Kit41 gp33.51Backpack  
^ Backpack (back)^ gp^1Worn  
^ Bedroll^ gp^1^  
^ Mess Kit^ gp^1^  
^ Rope^ gp^1^  
^ Trail Rations^ gp^5x^  
^ Water Skin^ gp^1^  
^ Candles^ gp^10x^  
^ ? Gold Pieces^ gp^???^  
^ Hammer2 gp51Worn  
^ Block and Tackle5 gp31Worn  
^ Sea Lord's Wine15 gp34xWorn  
^ Explorer's Outfit1 gp82xWorn  
^ Coldweather Outfit8 gp71Worn  
^ Dilettante Outfit20 gp81Worn  
^ Traveler's Outfit5 gp22xWorn  
^ Sack0.5 gp-4xWorn  
^ Scroll Box5 gp11Worn  
^ Candle Stick5 gp0.52xWorn  
^ Waterproof Bag0.5 gp0.52xWorn  
^ Rope of Climbing3000 gp31Worn  
Satchel (backpack)50 gp 1Worn, Left Hip  
^ Boline Tool10 gp21Satchel  
^ Surgeon's Tool20 gp51Satchel  
^ Healer's Kit50 gp11Satchel  
^ Silk Rope10 gp42xSatchel  
^ Chronicler's Kit40 gp41Satchel  
^ HarverSack??? gp^1SatchelMagicalDm Item, Old Teller
^^ Small Tent10 gp^1^ 1st PouchNewLeather
^^ Small Tent10 gp^1^ 2nd PouchNewLeather
^^ Small Tent10 gp^1^ 3rd PouchNewLeather
^^ Portable Alchemist Lab75 gp^1^ 4th PouchNewIronian Glassware
^^ Fishing Net4 gp^3x^ 5th PouchFreshWillow
^^ Fishing Tackle20 gp^2x^ 5th PouchFreshWillow, cotton
^^ SkyRocket Fireworks50 gp^5x^ 5th PouchFreshFireworks
^^ Smoke Cover75 gp^2x^ 5th PouchFreshClay Ball
^^ Salve of Slipperiness1000 gp^2x^ 5th PouchFreshIronian Glassware
^^ Cauldron1 gp^1^ 6th PouchFreshCast Iron
^^ Basket0.4 gp^4x^ 6th PouchFreshCast Iron
^^ Anti-Toxin50 gp^5x^ 6th PouchFreshArcadian Glass Vials
^^ Glass Vials1 gp^30x^ 6th PouchFreshArcadian Glass vials
^^ Alchemy Dye Kit160 gp^1^ 6th Pouch10/10 
^^ Disguise Kit8 gp^1^ 6th Pouch10/10 
^^ Disguise Kit8 gp^1^ 6th Pouch10/10 
^^ Winter Blankets0.5 gp^7x^ 6th PouchNewSheep skin
^^ Medium Tents15 gp^2x^ 7th pouchNewLeather

player, 501 posts
Vigor 14/34
Scholar, Spheres of Might
Sat 30 Dec 2023
at 07:35
  • msg #397

Re: ACT 1: Awakening; Chapter 5: The Misguided Guide

"How has the Alliance not come down on his ass?!"

"Being friends with everyone has it's perks, particularly being a friend between enemies." Irfan scoffs at the flex of sheer bribery before them. That and a good solid ship means sensetitive goods are less likely to have mishaps.

Irfan places down a small crate, Inside is  (a relevant) adventurer's kit For anyone that doesn't have one (bed roll, tools, foodware ect) and 5 day rations each. A Waster (weighted wooden sword),  and Sewing kit(Needle, Threads, Awl, Leather strips and straps,   Enough to put together leather and make clothing alterations) for Horus. Two Hip flasks for Milkweed full of potent booze. A Reversible Cloak for Loki, a cold Weather outfit for each, two short bows, 2 quivers of 20 arrows, and a Spyglass, and 5 filter scarfs.

He didn't know what to expect, but having a bunch of people not dressed for the weather and unable to hunt, again, lowered his chances of navigating, so he wanted to cover his bases. Booze would help keep Milkweed busy, and cold weather gear and blankets would shave off the worst of the cold, and they already had hot weather gear. Bows would  be useful in Milkweed's and maybe Horus's hand for attacking or just for hunting.

Once they saw what the Kwon territory was like, then Irfan could worry about acquiring local wear and goods.

Irfan let Loki reply to Romco, as he was the offical leader of the group, and he was eager to see where his life would be the next two days. Though it wouldn't hurt to exchange gold to help lower suspicion, assuming Romco had any Kwon currency to spare.
This message was last edited by the GM at 13:57, Sat 30 Dec 2023.
GM, 563 posts
Wed 3 Jan 2024
at 01:34
  • msg #398

Re: ACT 1: Awakening; Chapter 6: The Missing Princess Part 2

Whatever the sneaky minx wanted from you, it no longer mattered. You were aboard the ship and a 1-way trip to the Kwon outpost. Nothing could change that.

Speaking of the ship, it was quite fast despite being so large. The lack of battlements and less-than-full cargo hold probably made it quite lighter than originally designed, not to mention you travel time was constant and not piloted by an experienced crew. Thinking back on Loki the 1st day you met him, when he rear-ended a misfortunate merchant, it had probably been his 1st time flying the skimmer.
That night you had another one of those dreams, but it was significantly different this time.

Thus far, every single time you had had those dreams it was as if it was happening to you even though the you in the dream was obviously not you. This time you, the real you rather than the corrupted puppet/agent you had become, was looking onwards as if from a cage, somehow detached. You felt and saw things unfold but they were a bit murkier, more detached, like you were looking onto them.

A stream of consciousness blazed through. Familiar sights and events. The waking of the slumber. The climb. The disappointment. The weariness. The little man. The demons, the fire and the pain. The fall. The water. The drowning. The darkness.

But then new sensations arose as a new awakening commenced. A gentle hand by an old giant. Soldier?! No. Yes? but also no. Who are you? ...Khenty-irty?! That's quite a name, friend. Wise and kind but ignorant. New feeling. Debt? Gratitude? You feel sweetness among all the bitter. A new feeling. Pity? Sadness? Regret? No. No words to describe. I must reach the capitol. I sense dark winds. I hope there won't be another war. It has lost meaning. Heh, foolish. Pain lessens. You leave. You see you for the first time. It reminds you of the figure Horus described in the desert when the wall of death approached and you had to take cover in the ruins of the satellite settlement. You meet little man and soldiers again. Surprise! How hath thou found me? Hate from the lesser but...regret? from little man.

Thine name holds power. Speak it and it sends ripples. Words, sounds, ideas exchange more than last time ...Skrymir, your highness... little man bows. Reverence but no loyalty. Regret but also resolute. Demons, no angels from above descent upon you. You shall not pass. PAIN! They never end. Tired. Must flee. You grow and fly, but angels pursue. You flee. Flee. flee...


You awaken with a gasp like many other times. It takes you a minute to settle down, and for that 1 minute you are your real self. But like a fleeting dream, your true self whisks away and the corrupted, no ENLIGHTENED you reemerges. Unlike previous times, you dismiss the visions offhand. Irrelevant. You were so close to your goal you could almost taste it.

You had to make sure you, nor anyone else in your party, screws this up until after you're on the other side of the portal cuz that's when the fun begins. To that end you decide to gather whatever additional intel you could coax from Marco without raising suspicions. Thankfully it seems Loki already had the same idea and was already conversing the man to pass the time. All you had to do was eavesdrop.

"-yez, yez. Ze man ze princess Helen went with waz Councilor Ashiara. Perhaps I should start from ze top. Ze Kwon empire haz an emperor, obviously, hiz name iz Claudius but ze REAL pillars zat prop up ze empire are ze 3 men under him. General Rohan, chief officer of ze entire-ish imperial army. A veteran human than has earned his position from vat I hear. Ze soldiers zeem to like him, ze onez under him anyway. Councilor Ashiara, a famous and rezpected scholar who guides the kingdom’s higher learning and research. Academic stuff. Overseer of the kingdom's bureaucracy and, I suppoze in a way, iz the country's diplomat, or at least ze face zat the empire shows. He'z a lancky fellow, pale beastfolk, zom sort of a fox-variety? I met ze man. Haz quite ze silver tongue, but I could see ze snake underneath. Be very, VERY wary of him-" Honestly it was a bit dry and you were beginning to think that your time might be better spent elsewhere, when "-Ze last one is high priest Skrymir." WHOA, hold on a second, what?!

"Honestly, I don't know much about him," Marco shrugs, "Nor can I really tell you exactly what each of zem does. Zer rolls zeem to overlap a lot. Zer government ztructure izn't really like Ironia or Wingheld."

The A in Ashiara is silent.
This message was last edited by the GM at 02:55, Wed 03 Jan.
player, 502 posts
Vigor 14/34
Scholar, Spheres of Might
Fri 5 Jan 2024
at 09:05
  • msg #399

Re: ACT 1: Awakening; Chapter 6: The Missing Princess Part 2

From a outside standpoint.

(A)Shiara sounds like Ironia, Rohan as a counterpoint to Barbarian, and Skrymir as a Mystic offposed by Wingheld. Three independant entities willing united, or atleast united in deadlock trying to advance. If their empire could no longer expand, infighting is all that was left until they discovered new lands.

 One would say all three kingdoms Irfan knew where kinda overlapping roles as rulers, despite a loose allience.

With new lands discovered the power structure would have shifted with intrigue and viaing attempts. Claudis might be the stagnate inheritor, not unlike Alba.
Perhaps if you take oit the emporer, and look at it has 3 kingdoms in a stalemate and claud as the weak truce everyone wants to.rekove, but not get caught doing it.

Irfan is shocked to hear a name he shouldn't have known. It couldn't be horus, or some distant echo from the exalted, or a brain ameoba messing with him. Was it some kinda link from the exalted? No it started before he journeyed to the lonely one. Maybe it was Horus' memories.

But it was not before the Destroyer.

That though would have chilled Irfan to yhe bone a week ago, now it just made him a tad giddy. Questioning Romco more would be useless tbe man had stated as much(to Loki,) no sense in beating a dead subject. Blending in was a concern but it was unlikely romco could help prepare for that, which left currency.

There was a considerable chance romco had access to the kwon currency directly or indirectly, and that was one of the bigger concerns. They could probably steal whatever to blend in, but coinage is easier to use when you don't steal large sums of it unlike clothing. Strange coins would probably stand out most, followed by any strange customs.

Irfan approaches the dubious dou, "Politics you don't understand aside, how about economics. I'm sure you have aquired their currency, even if they only pay you in materials."
GM, 564 posts
Sat 6 Jan 2024
at 01:04
  • msg #400

Re: ACT 1: Awakening; Chapter 6: The Missing Princess Part 2

Reminder, you met Horus after the Destroyer incident.

Romco took your measure and sighed, "You really intendz to go to ze Kwon capitol, aren'tz you?" he shook his head, "Gold iz gold, zey take it anywhere, but if you zink it will help, I have zome Kwon coin," he shrugged and motioned with his hand to one of the better-dressed lackeys, the one you knew was like his second in command and used for more than just manual labor. The lackey nodded and disappeared into the captain's quarters. "A more pressing issue vill be your lack of ze local tongue. Ze trade tongue iz a lot less common in ze Kwon. But I guess ze reverend kingpriest knows it, yes? Knowing ze language of ze enemy an all zat. Alzo your purifier over zer is wearing Kwon armor, a bit dated zo I am guessing you are not going in zer blind? Just zay you are from a far away province if ze accent makes people suspiciouz," as he finished saying that the lackey returned with a coin purse.

He waited. Romco jerked his had in your direction and the lackey handed you the purse then went back to manning the ship. Weighing the thing, it looked like it had around 1000gp worth of coin, assuming it was gold and not copper.

"Now come, we must make ready. We will be zere soon. Ztay quiet until ze cargo iz unloaded and you are very sure you are alonez. And am I very long gone, " he motioned for you to go into one of the large crates which had a fake bottom.

Ugh, you'd be sqweezed in there like sardines.
player, 503 posts
Vigor 14/34
Scholar, Spheres of Might
Fri 19 Jan 2024
at 08:04
  • msg #401

Re: ACT 1: Awakening; Chapter 6: The Missing Princess Part 2

Will set gold coins to 1000 - However i Divide it up between companions(Evil).
I trust Irfan could learn (kwon) fast enough in a week with a willing companion, Assuming that was a option. There is always Horus in a pinch, and according to Romco, Shifu may be a option.

"And am I very long gone, "

Well, that would remain to be seen. Still need some kinda count down timer to the full moon. Earth logic puts full moons Zenithing at midnight.

Irfan nods, going to round up the group. Milkweed will be really popular after this, and despite being Arcadian, hiding among the crew wouldn't be a option since they were going to be dropped off and probably supervised. That said Irfan double checked which cargo they were supposed to be underneath, in case it mattered later, anything to have some control if things started to go south. Shifu would have to go first if she could fit, but it was probably best to put Milkweed by the door in case the Kwon opened it.
GM, 565 posts
Sat 20 Jan 2024
at 02:56
  • msg #402

Re: ACT 1: Awakening; Chapter 6: The Missing Princess Part 2

You were lead to a very large crate. You saw it was filled with apples, but then, standing outside you saw them finagle with the bottom portion of it from the side. It opened to reveal a fake bottom. A hidden compartment -ugh, you'll be packed like sardines!

"You call this VIP accommodations? We're supposed to be in there for over a day! Couldn't you make it a little bigger?" Loki was first to complain. And although not vocal about it, it seemed Horus and Milkweed shared the sentiment. Shifu was as unreadable as usual.

-"I'd like to remind you I am smuggling you inzide enemy territory. A little patience would go a long way," Marco replied with a deadpan expression.

~several uncomfortable hours later~

You felt the ship lurch to a stop. After some more time you heard Marco's crew working to open the hold and start moving cargo, including your crate. Faintly at first but with growing clarity you could hear voice from the inside. Specifically Marco's heavily accented common along with some other guy's equally accented common.

"-go Aolp? Youz again??"
-"Ze same as alvays" you heard the merchant speak in a very servile manner you couldn't even imagine he was capable of pulling off.

-"What is this is shipment? Me didn't hear anything for it?"
-"Ah, zo sorry about zat. I got an unexpected opportunity, Ze market vaits for no one az zey say. In fact I am in a great hurry here, I'll need zem transported through ze gate tonight."

You heard the, what you presumed to be the guard on shift, curse in an unknown language (probably Kwon) then sigh in frustration, "Well, you are the trader important."
-"I vould not be trading with ze Empire if I weren't," Marco tried to sound endearingly cheeky.
It seemed to work as it coaxed a laugh from the guard and lightened the mood.
-"Still, I have to be safe to check inside."
-"Sure, go ahead."

You felt your party members around you stiffen up as they heard that, suspecting the sly merchant was betraying them. Thankfully nobody did anything rash even as pry bars were used to pop open the lid of the crate you were hiding in.

"...fruit? Why so much??"
-"Like I said, rare opportunity. Go big or go home, he he. Why don't you take zis one for yourselvez? You work hard, you deserve a reward."
-"Hmmm, you right you are. EY! Zemete go ova i odneseto go vo trmezarijata! Za nas e!" the guard barked loudly in that same foreign tongue as the curses.

After that you felt the crate be moved around some more and finally set down. The light coming from the cracks between the planks dimmed (you guessed you were taken somewhere inside). And then with a sound of creaking hinges, wood hitting wood and a *click* the light went away altogether.

"Safe to say we made it, is what Shifu says" said the armored cleanser after a few minutes of silence. Now came the hard part.
player, 504 posts
Vigor 14/34
Scholar, Spheres of Might
Sun 21 Jan 2024
at 06:32
  • msg #403

Re: ACT 1: Awakening; Chapter 6: The Missing Princess Part 2

I'll assume it's a sliding bolt that can be unlocked from the outside between the cracks with a little effort, or from the inside.  Secure enough not to open while sliding or dragging it around, but solid enough not to bang around  when jostled or make noise.

Irfan assumes they are in some kinda storeroom, that sound should have been the door locking, enough they should have some warning in case someone returns. "Milkweed, If you don't see anything, I think you can open it." as long as they ALL didn't spill out they should be fine if someone did return. He wanted to take a look at their surroundings and the lock they were secured behind. Depending on the time frame they might have to spend more time waiting, though by the sounds of it, their crate was supposed to be transported. Still no reason to spend the whole time in pain if they weren't going to be observed.
This message was last edited by the player at 01:36, Mon 22 Jan.
GM, 566 posts
Wed 7 Feb 2024
at 23:50
  • msg #404

Re: ACT 1: Awakening; Chapter 6: The Missing Princess Part 2

Everyone came out of the crate and for a few minutes the sounds of bones popping back into place, muffled groans and rustling clothes of people stretching whispered into the dimness of the storeroom. You took turns standing by the door and listening for approaching guards and aside from a few false alarms it was mostly just a whole lot of nothing and waiting around as the hours ticked on by. Whether it was the anticipation of what was inevitably to come or the feeling of helplessness from not having anything to do until then (or a combination of both), everyone's nerves were starting to get more stretched out as time passed by. Then...

"Guards are coming! They're coming here!" the kitsune stage-whispered urgently. It had been his turn to watch out for trouble and it seems trouble was a-coming. Everyone scampered back into the crate as fast and as silently as they could (give me a stealth check).

Moments later you heard the door to the storeroom open and a pair of boots trudge in. It was two guards dragging their feet and talking amongst themselves. You couldn't understand at first but then a voice popped into your head.

'Ummm, they seem to talking about their captain and a winged captive -Oh, that must be Hina!-...wheew, seems like she's ok. The douche seems to have a thing about lording power over people rather than, ya know.'

You heard the lid of your crate open above you, then close again, then the sounds of chewing and people talking with their mouths full.

'Seems like they're supposed to pick which crate to send through the gate tonight and which ones to keep for themselves.
...One of them is asking the other one what the new password for something is. The previous one was Argentum, but neither of them read the update notice in the barracks.

Ah! It seems like they heard something before and they think there's rats in here. They're spitting on Romco's name, wondering if he brought the vermin here. Oh shit, seems like they're giving the place a quick once over to see if they see any signs of rat holes in the walls or crates!'

If the stealth check is bad (just roll me 3d20s for the other 3 characters, label them which is for which and I'll add the mods afterwards) they will be most suspicious of the crate you're in. Other than that, what else do you want to do? Wait for them to leave? Bust out and attack? Mess with them in some other way perhaps to achieve some other objective?
player, 505 posts
Vigor 14/34
Scholar, Spheres of Might
Tue 13 Feb 2024
at 07:48
  • msg #405

Re: ACT 1: Awakening; Chapter 6: The Missing Princess Part 2

Irfan rolled 17 using 1d20 ((17)). Stealth
Irfan rolled 13 using 1d20.  Milk. Stealth
Irfan rolled 10 using 1d20.  Loki. Stealth
Irfan rolled 11 using 1d20.  Horus. Stealth
Irfan rolled 18 using 1d20+3.  Int check

Irfan rolled 12 using 1d20+8.  Knowledge religion Shifu's Voice.    spellcraft(Knowledge Arcana) is a +3 modifier. – 12

I don't really have a full map to work with,  verbal or otherwise so I'll wing it. Stone Store room, one door, 4-8 big boxes and assorted small boxes and shelves  stuff the Kwon keep in storage like dried foods, and stuff the Kwon are considering shipping. Important enough to put a lock on the door, but not actively guard or rather guards can watch a entrance far away for a whole area.

Shifu's voice startles Irfan, but knowing why they are here helps. If she could communicate with him, she hear him? Could she talk to loki the same way?

Irfan doesn't know how the guards would react to rats,  shipping a crate first or just abandoning it, so best not to rock that boat unless they wanted to fight their way out of here. Risking giving them what they want would be bad, He had hidden a paper wasp nest in one of the other boxes as a emergency distraction but he had hoped to be sent through the portal before being found. A Dirty trick trap here and there in the other boxes, A smelly sulfur liquid that would spill if someone started digging around in sickening them, a rope he had spun up in a equipment box that would suddenly snap around if disturbed, startling(shackening) whoever was digging in it.

As a last resort he would freeze the door shut if they found it and tried to move it, hoping they would assume it was some simple preserving alchemy or magic behind the door and lose interest. At the least the ice would probably seal it, making it harder then it's worth to pry open.  If ice appears when opened, surely there are no rats inside right?

On the other hand if they were really that motivated, Irfan would be happy to have their uniform donations. Pulling a dagger, Irfan grabs a vial of poison, he didn't want to use it here, but knocking one out immediately would improve their odds of avoiding an immediate alarm.
This message was last edited by the player at 07:05, Wed 14 Feb.
GM, 567 posts
Wed 14 Feb 2024
at 23:36
  • msg #406

Re: ACT 1: Awakening; Chapter 6: The Missing Princess Part 2

Should have used the red color instead of brown. Nothing on the knowledge check.

You heard the guards shuffling about, muttering something in that language of theirs, sounds of lids coming off.

'Seems they've noticed our crate has cooling so they think the food there would be the freshest so they should keep it for themselves while sending the others through the portal,' the voice translated into your head again.

Your own crate wasn't being tampered with yet as the inspection for vermin resumed though that did nothing to reduce the stifling quiet and tension in the cramped space.

All of the sudden shouts of distress, surprise and anger started filling the storeroom. You didn't need the voice to tell you more than a little cursing was going around. 'Seems they've stumbled upon some of your surprises'

The guards stomped out of the room, a for about a minute or two the storeroom was silent save for the faint buzzing of wasps. Soon however the stomping came back with a vengeance. There was a commotion. The sounds of buzzing whittled down until they were gone altogether. There was more barking "intense" talking, the name Aolp Ramco dropping more than a few times. Everyone in the cramped space jerked and almost had a small heart attack when someone from outside kicked your crate angrily. 'Relax, relax. They're just talking among each other how they'll have to send the cool crate through the gate while they'd be stuck cleaning up the "rotten" ones'

After some more yammering, which was probably inconsequential since the voice didn't bother translating it, the soldiers in the storeroom filed out and slammed the door shut behind them.

A few more minutes of silence passed before everyone felt comfortable enough to release the breath they had been holding.

"Looks like they're not coming back" Horus dared whispered.
-"Good, cuz I need to get out an stretch my spine before it becomes permanently bend this way," Milkweed grumbled and stared ushering everyone to get out. Unlike the 1st time you had been stacked in there back on marco's ship when you had had the time to carefully get in and make yourself as comfortable as possible, this time it had been a mad dash where 'if it fits, it ships' had reigned supreme.

Loki, not one for taking chances, went back to the door to keep watch just in case. That didn't stop him from voicing his own worries though, "So what's our next move? Seems like they'll be doing our job for us and delivering us to the portal tonight, but I'd feel more comfortable if we knew where Hana was right now, what's her condition, and confirmation that jackass is taking her through the portal with him. Wait, are we sure he'd going too or staying behind?"
player, 506 posts
Vigor 14/34
Scholar, Spheres of Might
Fri 16 Feb 2024
at 07:08
  • msg #407

Re: ACT 1: Awakening; Chapter 6: The Missing Princess Part 2

Loki, not one for taking chances, went back to the door to keep watch just in case. That didn't stop him from voicing his own worries though, "So what's our next move? Seems like they'll be doing our job for us and delivering us to the portal tonight, but I'd feel more comfortable if we knew where Hana was right now, what's her condition, and confirmation that jackass is taking her through the portal with him. Wait, are we sure he'd going too or staying behind?"

-"Alright! *gasp* *pant* *pant* Princess Hana was carrying it. I got to see it and use it to defend us while traveling with her,*pant* *pant*"
-"Oooh, interesting. So she has it right now? I would have noticed something that big on her. Did she stash it away somewhere?" he got on one knee and leaned in closer, very interested to hear more.
'This is good,' he was distracted, far away and had his back turned. The only thing you had to worry about now was edging closer without the soldiers noticing.
-"No,*pant* we lost it when fighting dead monsters in some cursed ruins nearby. There was this purple mist and-"
Rashomon throws his head back and groans in frustration.
You were making great progress. Almost there... you started rising up.
-"What is it sir?" the soldiers pause and perk up again.
-"The morons were exploring Shambala and lost the sword," he barked at them as he come stomping over.
<i>Shit!</i> you immediately fall back prone out of sight. With him facing in your general direction, even if distracted, you didn't like your odds of just standing up in full view and slipping into the secret passage undetected. You only got 1 shot at this and you had to make it right.
-"Shambala? You mean the ghost city down south we past just yesterday? But isn't it still under the hex?"
-"Assemble the men, we're heading out," he barked again as he inspected the girl on the camel.
-"To Shambala?!!" the fear and distress in full display.
-"NO, you idiot, the sword was probably dragged off to the core by now. You think I'm crazy enough to go diving into it without preparation and a specialized team? Fuck that, we're heading back south to *what's the name of that Kwon-Yuu foothold at the very tip of Southern Arcania?*"
-"What about the lead, and the search for the Tenrybitto?"
'Come on! Just look away alrea-wait what?' hearing that word made you pause. You had gathered earlier that the officer was using some kind of magic to facilitate communication, but even when using magical means of translation when someone used a word in one language that had no equivalent in the other, the word came out in its original phrasing.
-"That retarded fatso knows nothing of use. Even if he did witness the Tenrybitto he's too much of a coward to have payed attention to anything other than saving his own skin. It could be anywhere as anything by now."
-"Soooo, are we resuming the search?"
At this the Kwon-Yuu officer stopped and pondered for a moment before answering. "...No," he said at length, "the whole operation was a wild stab in the dark from the start, I called it right from the start,, a waste of manpower and needless loss to the wild creatures of this forsaken place. No, we're heading back to base then *make the jump back home via the Cursed Crossways."
-"Um, won't the sic- er, general be displeased we abandoned the mission?" the soldier didn't bother hiding his fear.
-"The next full moon is ways off. We'll just make a show of putting in the effort, take our time going back, take the scenic route if you will. Without some better means of tracking the Tenrybitto right now it's like searching for a needle in a haystack anyway. Hopefully by the time we get back they'd have came in contact with the other half on their side if not dealt with it already. If they got something to use as a medium we could use divination magic to find it on this side. Until then there's no point...Besides-" an evil grin spread on his face as he ran a caressing finger along the cheek of the unconscious and battered Hana, "-it's not like we're coming back empty handed. A fine consolation prize, wouldn't you agree? And I'm sure they'd be more than interested to hear that the Alliance lost their precious Sword of Trust, ha haah! Ooooh boy" he said as he was preparing to leave back the way he came.
'Not good, not good! He's ganna see me as he passes by!'
-"Whait! *cough* *cough*" Horus desperately rasps out, coughing out blood as he did, "What about my friend? *cough* Please, you must safe Irfan. *cough* *hack* You promized!"
Rashomon turns back to look at the boy with a bit of puzzlement, mumbling something like Oh right, I forgot about him under his breath.
It's now or never!
-"I said I wouldn't kill him. I never said anything about saving him,"
-", bastard, <small>aargh. Irfan!</small>"

The last thing you saw before the wall closed was the Kwon-Yuu officer laughing, taking perverted pleasure at watching Horus try to drag himself towards where he was fooled into believing you lay dying, creating a trail of blood from his own injuries as he did.


Out in the street you see the soldiers that had come from the inside were attending to the ones caught in the stampede. Potions changed hands, some of them had magical healing powers. Soon enough they were, perhaps not in perfect condition but at least stable enough to travel or move. Those that could be helped anyway. A few remained motionless on the ground, and you were relieved to see none of them were Arcanians.

Rasho was already marching back into view, having retraced his steps from the chase. This could mean ether good news or very VERY bad news for Horus, depending on whether the officer had lingered behind to want him struggle to the end or just walked away and leave him to his fate. The 2 soldiers that were with him were following suit, carrying Hana. He barked a few orders, some of those soldiers that could heal clustered around the tengu princess, a couple of blue lights glowed, the others collected their. The officer started flailing his hands in complex patterns and speaking in some foreign tongue similar to how you've seen Hana do when casting spells. Before your very eyes a bunch of horses(?) materialized out of nowhere! He repeated the process a few times and pretty soon there were enough mounts for the entire Kwon-Yuu platoon, all few dozen of them. After securing Hana, the dead, discarded gear, and those still too injured to ride alone, they rode out without any further flare nor fanfare.

Irfan shakes his head, "That bastard, He definitely is planning on take the portal, and he see Hana as very valuable to getting ahead in life. He won't leave her here, and he probably didn't even inform any else that she was here, rumors have their way. Even if we knew where to find her, assuming we forced someone to talk, trusted them, and they knew where. We throw out any chance of getting to Helen by trying. He be keeping her as a prized living trophy somewhere, assuming she is eating, she should be well  (physically)." Not that Irfan wasn't seeing the appeal but it just seemed so insignificantly human to toy with your food.

"Our chances of rescuing Hana won't be any worse on the other side, but we will be infinitely closer to Helen by then. Remember we don't know anything about how these portals work, just that their ritual is tied to the moon. By tomorrow we will probably find our selves in the same predicament only on the other side, where we will either need to break out or wait till we can escape while being shipped elsewhere. Our best bet would be to free her then, when there are more moving factions, and they feel more at home." Irfan didn't like it, Loki fighting in a military area just after getting there didn't have the appeal of Loki tearing apart buildings and streets in their oh so precious capital, their homeland invaded by some barbarian rampage. However there were only so many options to appeal to when Irfan didn't know much himself.

He didn't even like the fact that everyone was sprawling out around the room again, which is half of what drew attention to them last time. 2 hours is chump change to wait now, and they would be screwed if soldiers had to be sent back up here a (third time).

It was time to settle in for long haul and get any snacks out of the way. (rations)

Irfan selected one of the empty seal-able containers that looked like it was being stored long term, and directed encouraged every to take their reprieve, before using prestidigination to re-dusty it. Sucks to be whoever will get to store flour in that chamberpot. It wouldn't be their problem by the time the rat turds where found.

Intending, but not forcing every to regroup after their hopefully short break, Irfan does offer to lay out some of the fur blankets for warmth and/or comfort, space willing, the desert can get cold at night, and he might have to lower the temperature again and didn't need anyone shacking the box and chattering their teeth, probably wouldn't hurt for Horus and Loki to have a Jacket at hand either.

"Once we are there, we will have to act quickly if we are going to save Hana, or make our way to the capital where Helen is, and trust they will wind up together due to having the same value. Best we figure out what our options are when that time comes. Horus can mimic anything, even stuff he shouldn't know even if it's a bit off. I've got my bag of tricks, including a bunch of distractions, smoke that can knock people out or bubbles that can break a fall. Milweeds is surprisingly skilled with stabbing and getting around. That just leaves magic as the wild cards, the strong Shifu, and the mighty Kingpriest. I know one of you can send silent messages, and the other can magically manipulate things, are there any more reality defying feats we should be aware of tomorrow?" Irfan schemes as they reload the smuggler's cache.
GM, 568 posts
Sat 24 Feb 2024
at 00:27
  • msg #408

Re: ACT 1: Awakening; Chapter 6: The Missing Princess Part 2

Loki was deep in thought by what you said, weighing things. His restlessness over not seeing Hana for himself was ebbing away as your logic was prevailing over his impulsiveness (he was definitely not in a situation where he could afford loosening the grip on his infamous barbarian heritage), but it wasn't gone completely. And you could see it mirrored in Milkweed as well.

"Math was never my strongest subject, nor literacy, nor history to be completely honest, but I'm pretty sure there would be more soldiers in the capitol of the Kwon Empire than in this fort. Furthermore, ever since the war ended, the only thing these guys have had to guard this place from is dust. I have a feeling security is a lot more lax on this side than on the other one so if we were to cause a commotion which we probably would since I doubt the SS guy would be letting his excuse out of his grasp until he got rewarded, wouldn't it be better we did it on this side? Call me pessimistic but I don't think we'll be able to cloak and dagger our way through everything," the kitsune swordsman voiced his concerns.

Shifu and Horus remained silent on the matter. The latter because blue boy was always the one to go with the flow and as long as it leads to saving Hana he didn't seem to care which path was taken. You were a bit bewildered by Shifu's non-committal attitude however, though given how it didn't interfere with your plans to (eventually) sabotage this whole thing to high-heaven, you couldn't really be brought to care enough.

Loki's indecisiveness meant that the decision ultimately rested between who made the better case: You or Milkweed (and to be fair, the kitsune wasn't really married to his idea or especially against yours, just seeing the pros and cons of each one).

Roll me 2 persuasion diplomacy checks.  One for Irfan, one for Milkweed (roll a 1d20+3 for him). If you win, Loki decides to go with your plan. If Milkweed wins, he goes with his. If you roll especially bad (like a nat 1 or over 10 points less than Milkweed), Loki's fears for Hana will flare back up again and he will insist on someone (or the whole party) to leave the storeroom before the ritual and do reconnaissance.
This message was last edited by the GM at 00:28, Sat 24 Feb.
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