Chapter 3: "All Will Be Well"   Posted by DM.Group: 0
Oswald Weiss
 player, 399 posts
 Unbent. Unbroken.
 Inflammable.
Wed 4 Oct 2017
at 11:07
Re: Chapter 3: "All Will Be Well"
In reply to Joaquin (msg # 348):

Oz looks uncomfortable for a moment.

"He, ah, he did say something about keeping watch all night outside," he says at last. "now that you mention it..."

This message was last edited by the player at 21:28, Wed 04 Oct 2017.

DM
 GM, 377 posts
 Goddess of Destruction
 Love Me & Despair
Wed 4 Oct 2017
at 20:57
Re: Chapter 3: "All Will Be Well"
Urwin comes out from around the stable area of the inn, wiping his hands clean with a dirty rag and looking worried.

"There are new fliers in the town square this morning, word on the street goes," the burly innkeeper says.  "Apparently the burgomaster intends to deliver a speech.  Doesn't say what about, but I'll stake my watch and warrant that I have an idea as to the subject matter."

He looks meaningfully at the party.  Rictavio looks, who was on his way out the door to begin his day, stops, looking interested.

"Well.  Therein lies a tale, I'm sure." The half-elf storyteller looks around expectantly to see if an explanation is forthcoming.

This message was last edited by the GM at 20:59, Wed 04 Oct 2017.

Joaquin
 player, 276 posts
 Once a soldier
 Now a cleric
Wed 4 Oct 2017
at 21:43
Re: Chapter 3: "All Will Be Well"
Joaquín remembering the last handbill he saw, quietly asks Urwin what he hopes is a stinging question.

Urwin, how is it that Vargas is still the Burgermeister?  I saw a mother and child locked in the stocks yesterday.  Apparently from having the gall to stay at home during a festival due to illness. Is that normal? Where is the outrage?
Oswald Weiss
 player, 400 posts
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Thu 5 Oct 2017
at 20:43
Re: Chapter 3: "All Will Be Well"
In reply to Joaquin (msg # 351):

"...I'd stick around for the speech," Oz advises their elven friend, the corners of his lips curling into a smile. "It's gonna be huge."

This message was last edited by the player at 20:43, Thu 05 Oct 2017.

DM
 GM, 378 posts
 Goddess of Destruction
 Love Me & Despair
Fri 6 Oct 2017
at 00:59
Re: Chapter 3: "All Will Be Well"
"Well," Urwin says, "I suppose it's because Vargas has what most of us don't.  Money.  A storied lineage.  Connections. A lot of people think that those qualities render someone suitable for leadership.  As for the rest, I suspect that they feel the same way I do.  Unwilling to risk their families and livelihoods."

"Ah well.  What do you lot have planned for the day?"
Joaquin
 player, 277 posts
 Once a soldier
 Now a cleric
Sat 7 Oct 2017
at 02:23
Re: Chapter 3: "All Will Be Well"
Looking a bit bewildered, Joaquín asks him about possible replacements.

And there is no one else that also has money and connections?  What about Lady Wachter?  I hear she isn't afraid of Vargas at all.  Could she be the Burgermeister? Or is that against the local custom?

As to plans, I suspect we shall see what Vargas has to say.

DM
 GM, 379 posts
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Sun 8 Oct 2017
at 15:44
Re: Chapter 3: "All Will Be Well"
"Fiona Wachter is indeed from an old and storied lineage and she does not approve of Vargas' leadership, it is true.  But. . . well, to be quite frank, her proud professing of her connections with Strahd is something that many of the people of this town find troubling."


"If you are to visit her while you are in town, I would perhaps not mention too loudly that you are questing to end Strahd's reign."

Oswald Weiss
 player, 401 posts
 Unbent. Unbroken.
 Inflammable.
Mon 9 Oct 2017
at 02:00
Re: Chapter 3: "All Will Be Well"
In reply to DM (msg # 355):

"Rock and a hard place," Oz mutters to himself. He temper flares, the dam holding back his impatience ruptures, and he explodes in a torrent of verbal fury. "Is there no one-" he bellows, holding up an index finger. "-not ONE decent person within twoscore miles with both the means and the disposition to rule with at least a modicum of decency!?"

He waves out the sparks that had begun to kindle along his fingertips and regains a semblance of an indoor speaking voice.

"I'd settle for someone who neither supports the tyranny of vampire lords nor hopes to supplant them with their own personal brand of terribleness..."

This message was last edited by the player at 02:00, Mon 09 Oct 2017.

Joaquin
 player, 278 posts
 Once a soldier
 Now a cleric
Mon 9 Oct 2017
at 11:31
Re: Chapter 3: "All Will Be Well"
Joaquín shoots daggers at Oz with his eyes and whispers to him:

So much for easing Urwin into the idea of doing it himself

Looking back to Urwin, Joaquín asks him, Why not you Urwin? You clearly run a business and you seem the fair-minded sort...
DM
 GM, 380 posts
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Mon 9 Oct 2017
at 11:38
Re: Chapter 3: "All Will Be Well"
Urwin remains level-headed during Oz's outburst and waits for the sorcerer's anger to burn itself off, probably out of fear for his inn.

"A noble sentiment, albeit expressed with fiery words." Urwin grins as if he knows his joke is a bad one.  His smile fades, as he consults with his wife via meaningful glances.  Finally, he heaves a deep sigh.  A decision has been reached.

"With Danika's permission, I would like to show all of you something. Something that may well assuage your fears, Oz.  BUT--" Urwin's dark eyes blaze momentarily, and his impressive beard practically bristles.  "If I do, then all of you--every last one--must promise not to divulge what I am about to share.  To do so would be to place my family in grave danger should this information fall into the wrong hands. There are those who would not hesitate to slay us, yes, even the boys."


<DarkBlue>"We've shared our bed and board with you.  Can we trust you with this as well?"
</DarkBlue>
Joaquin
 player, 279 posts
 Once a soldier
 Now a cleric
Mon 9 Oct 2017
at 18:21
Re: Chapter 3: "All Will Be Well"
You have my word, sworn on my service to el Gran Dios Boo
Oswald Weiss
 player, 402 posts
 Unbent. Unbroken.
 Inflammable.
Mon 9 Oct 2017
at 18:43
Re: Chapter 3: "All Will Be Well"
In reply to Joaquin (msg # 359):

Oz knows better than to make such a solemn promise, and so he merely nods to indicate this proposal has placated him...at least, for now.
DM
 GM, 381 posts
 Goddess of Destruction
 Love Me & Despair
Mon 9 Oct 2017
at 18:53
Re: Chapter 3: "All Will Be Well"
Satisfied with the assorted replies, Urwin and Danika motion to the party, and to their two sons, to follow them.  The family leads the party up the stairs to the attic of the inn--a wide, sun-filled room with various and sundry boxes and furniture.

Urwin, Danika, and their sons stand in the middle of the room and face the party.  A crackle of energy seems to pass through their bodies and, with a flicker of *something*, the innkeeper and his family are gone.  Their clothes fall to the floor in heaps.  Where the four once stood are four sleek, black ravens.  The raven that is Brom *qworks* in amusement at the party's collective disbelief.

The Brom-raven flaps over behind a box and, an instant later with another crackle of mysterious magic, Brom's head pops up again.

"So. . . .I guess you should step outside while we get dressed again?"

Once the family has had time to garb themselves again, they invite the party back into the attic.  Urwin smiles.

"Any questions?"

This message was last edited by the GM at 19:01, Mon 09 Oct 2017.

Oswald Weiss
 player, 403 posts
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Mon 9 Oct 2017
at 18:57
Re: Chapter 3: "All Will Be Well"
In reply to DM (msg # 361):

"...potentially."

Oz screws up his brow, pondering the magical implications of what he had just seen.

[Arcana: 12]

"Tell me, how did you manage that without polymorphic magic?"

This message was last edited by the player at 19:06, Mon 09 Oct 2017.

Joaquin
 player, 280 posts
 Once a soldier
 Now a cleric
Mon 9 Oct 2017
at 21:48
Re: Chapter 3: "All Will Be Well"
Clapping his hands gleefully, Joaquín jumps straight to the important part (to him at least) Por el Gran Dios Boo!
 How does it feel to fly?

DM
 GM, 382 posts
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 Love Me & Despair
Mon 9 Oct 2017
at 23:26
Re: Chapter 3: "All Will Be Well"
"It's not magic.  My family are. . .I suppose you might use the term "wereraven"
 to describe us, but we call ourselves the Corvidae.  The ability is transferred in much the same way that the werewolf's curse is--in the blood.  No doubt your instructors could tell you a great deal more, Alaric,"
Urwin says with a nod to the resident Witcher.

>In my case, I inherited the gift from my father, Davian. His temper isn't the only reason we call him the Old Crow," Urwin explains.

"And I received a nasty peck when I was a girl and was climbing a tree to investigate a bird's nest I found," Danika adds.  "My abilities manifested shortly thereafter.  And of course it was to be expected that both of our children would have inherited the gift."

"Oz, you asked--I believe your words were--if there was one decent person within twoscore miles. I hope I can set your mind at ease with regard to that," Urwin continues.

"Danika and I are both members of the Keepers of the Feather.  It is a terribly ancient group, mostly made up of Corvidae.  Legend says that the group dates back to when a paladin by the name of Lugdana received sacred orders and a holy relic from an angel in the guise of a great raven. Until her death, Lugdana traveled the land uprooting nests of evil wherever they could be found.

"The Keepers of the Feather strive to upload her values today. Wherever terrors can be found in Barovia--which,
 being Barovia, is pretty much all over--we seek to oppose them, and Strahd most especially."


"Which is also why we beg your discretion," Danika adds softly.  "Strahd naturally despises the Corvidae, and would not hesitate to destroy us if our identity become known.  Ours lives are very much in your hands."
Oswald Weiss
 player, 404 posts
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Tue 10 Oct 2017
at 13:16
Re: Chapter 3: "All Will Be Well"
In reply to DM (msg # 364):

"Fascinating," Oz murmurs. "Your secret is secure with us."

Wereravens? That's what passes for normal and decent in this cursed land?!

"Are there...downsides? To your gift, I mean. It's a handy ability, to be sure. One that might be...worth acquiring...for those who would seek to topple Strahd."

He frown slightly.

"And, I mean no disrespect, but...if your order has been fighting to oppose Strahd for years, what has Strahd done to so utterly thwart those efforts?"
DM
 GM, 383 posts
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 Love Me & Despair
Tue 10 Oct 2017
at 21:54
Re: Chapter 3: "All Will Be Well"
"Strahd is a centuries-old vampyre lord who made pacts with, as the story goes, made a pact with forces of untold evil to gain powers beyond reckoning.  We can turn into birds at will," says Urwin.  "The odds are not exactly stacked in our favor."

"The Corvidae of old were said to possess greater powers," Danika says,
 shooting her husband a dirty look for his lip. "The holy symbol of Lugdana was said to have powered the order with a deep magic.  But it has long since been lost to us, if indeed it ever existed.  A lot of people think it's just a tale."

"Still, the Corvid are some of the more effective spies you could ever hope to find," Urwin adds."Any raven you see flying about is probably precisely that: a raven.  But it could be one of us."
Joaquin
 player, 281 posts
 Once a soldier
 Now a cleric
Tue 10 Oct 2017
at 23:03
Re: Chapter 3: "All Will Be Well"
Holy symbol you say?  What are the legends about this symbol? It seems worth investigating since this is a land of strangeness.
DM
 GM, 385 posts
 Goddess of Destruction
 Love Me & Despair
Wed 11 Oct 2017
at 00:03
Re: Chapter 3: "All Will Be Well"
"Well, as I said, the legend goes that the holy symbol was bestowed upon a young woman named Lugdana. This was well before Strahd came to these lands and isolated them with his magic.

Lugdana was lowborn, but possessed a great heart. Because of her innate goodness, the gods chose her to be their paladin and an angel appeared before her in the guise of a great raven, bearing the holy symbol in its talons. After that, she traveled the realm of Barovia fighting monsters and upholding justice wherever darkness threatened it."


[So sort of a cross b/t Robin Hood and Joan of Arc. Alaric would have at least heard of her--sort of a psuedo-Witcher.]

"According to the legends, the holy symbol was lot in Lugdana's final battle against a lich. The creature was destroyed when the holy symbol expended a veritable shock wave of magic, but Lugdana's wounds proved mortal and she too fell. The symbol was never found after that fateful fight.  The more pragmatic among us say that it was taken back up by the celestial raven, its purpose accomplished.  Some say it's still out there somewhere."
Joaquin
 player, 282 posts
 Once a soldier
 Now a cleric
Wed 11 Oct 2017
at 01:13
Re: Chapter 3: "All Will Be Well"
Interesting.  Do the legends say where they fought? Or what the lich's name was?  Or where he had his stronghold?A bit over eager at this point dummy, slow down
Alaric von Innsbruck
 player, 201 posts
 Silver for monsters
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Wed 11 Oct 2017
at 13:29
Re: Chapter 3: "All Will Be Well"
Alaric observes the display and subsequent narration impassively, save for a new light of interest in his eyes. He pays attention to everything the family says, observing their movements and mannerisms with a clinical eye.

This land has more research material in two square miles than the homeland does in an entire province. No wonder all the bestiaries cite Barovia in one way or another.

Aloud, he says Do the Corvidae know anything about breaking curses? We could use a bit of direction on that front.
DM
 GM, 386 posts
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Thu 12 Oct 2017
at 00:46
Re: Chapter 3: "All Will Be Well"
"The lich's name has never been mentioned in any story I've heard.  As for where the lich's stronghold is, I'm sure you'll be unsurprised to learn that its foundation were supposedly where Castle Ravenloft now stands.  Evil calls to evil.  Mind you, that's speculation, and I rather suspect it simply makes for a good story."

Urwin strokes his beard as he considers Alaric's query.

"What sort of a curse are we talking about?"
Oswald Weiss
 player, 406 posts
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Thu 12 Oct 2017
at 20:53
Re: Chapter 3: "All Will Be Well"
In reply to DM (msg # 371):

"A vampiric curse," Oz supplies. He looks around to see if anyone is upset by this. "What? They just laid their cards on the table. There's no reason to beat around the bush."
DM
 GM, 387 posts
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 Love Me & Despair
Thu 12 Oct 2017
at 23:05
Re: Chapter 3: "All Will Be Well"
"By all the gods," Urwin sighs.  "I thought you all were making trouble for yourselves. Foolish me, I had no idea how deep that trouble ran."

"Listen, I'll tell you true: if you're dealing with the effects of a vampyre curse, then there's little I can do for you. You've probably more experience on the matter than I do. I will tell you that you would perhaps be well advised to visit my father Davian at his winery.  The Old Crow can be crotchety when he's in his cups, but he's made a study of lore for his own amusement. Perhaps some of his, er, "research" could be of use to you?"