1: Catastrophe Strikes!   Posted by GM StarMaster.Group: 0
GM StarMaster
 GM, 4 posts
Mon 28 Sep 2020
at 03:23
1: Catastrophe Strikes!
The sound of the mountain exploding was heard for over 200 miles, though very few people knew it for what it was. Only those within 50 miles of the Forgotten Realms' Earthspur Mountains had any idea of the degree of the disaster. For them, the ground trembled and shook so violently that many buildings collapsed. The sun was blotted out for days. At least three villages were completed covered in ash in the blink of any eye, killing every living thing there. Two towns were obliterated by the pyroclastic flow that swept down off the mountain.

Via magic, it didn't take long for word to spread around the surrounding areas about what had happened. A new volcano had been born. Someone had named it Mt. Doom... and the name stuck. But something was strange about it. Rumors ran rampant. It was alive! It was caused by the Drow of Underearth! A giant fireball fell out of the sky! A Mad Wizard caused it with his extraplanar experiments! The gods are angry!

Is any of it true? Could ALL of it be true?

Someone must find out! And soon!

Will you heed the call that you aren't even aware is there? Just what is it the draws you to the Green Star Citadel? Perhaps it's the birthmark or the scar or the tattoo you have. It tingles when you travel in another direction, even to the point where it starts to burn if you persist.

It goes away completely when you head for the Green Star Citadel, even if you've never heard of it and don't know what or where it is. Eventually, you make your way to The Vast, in the southern foothills of the Earthspur Mountains, just north of the River Vesper. That's where your journey ends (for the moment)--at the Green Star Citadel.

This message was last edited by the GM at 15:23, Mon 05 Oct 2020.

Tyrol Halverschlagen
 player, 3 posts
 Gnome Alchemist/Rogue
 AC: 29/18/25; HP: 120/120
Sun 4 Oct 2020
at 07:25
1: Catastrophe Strikes!
Unless he used a mirror, he never really ever saw that damned 'green star' birthmark on his left butt cheek. According to Momma Krina, he was born with it even though it was way too regular and strange to be 'normal'. Since it was always covered up (well, almost always), it was never a big deal as he grew up. Until he started fooling around with women. Half of them thought it was cute and fascinating; the other half didn't quite run away screaming but thought it was some sort of curse or something.

And then it caught fire! Not really, but it sure felt like it! Suddenly, out of the blue, it began hurting, stinging, burning... he couldn't quite describe it. It was only after he started running around in circles yelling his ass was on fire that it started to ease off, but only when he was running north! How strange was that?

If he tried walking in some other direction, it hurt again. The longer he persisted, the worse it got! It eventually occurred to him that it was some sort of summoning. Right?

As he moved north, he began hearing the tales about the volcano. By the fourth or fifth time, he finally put it together that it had something to do with his burning ass, although the connection eluded him. It did, however, prompt him to move faster, which as saying something for a Gnome.

It didn't insist he climb every wall or hill or mountain in his path--he was able to go around them when necessary. That made him think it had something to do with his intent.

After several days, he saw it. He wasn't sure what it was, but it was definitely IT. He supposed it qualified as a 'citadel', but looked a bit more like a monastery. The main part was a circular building with a golden dome. Each of the two wings had a small tower atop them.

It was the big green star on the front that said it was IT. The door to the place... well, at least the front door, was just under the star.

There was a man standing in the doorway as he approached but went inside before he reached it. The door was open, so Tyrol walked in.


OOC: Based on GM info and prompt!
Kurat
 player, 9 posts
 Hobgoblin Monk/Wizard
Sun 4 Oct 2020
at 13:10
1: Catastrophe Strikes!
Kurat had been working for Overshadow Wronsa the last few months clearing some new warrens in the Underdark for Brikklext. It was not a hard contract, they were making good time and stood to get the promised bonus for their speedy work. That is when the ground shook. They were in the middle of a battle. Kurat's tattoo seemed to burn as it happened. Stalagtites broke from the cavern ceiling and decimated both sides ranks. At first it was thought that the enemy had resulted in magic it was only Kurat's fast feet that saved him. His entire company was killed in the onslaught and the ground shook for some time. Fortunately the other side was just as equally devastated by the earthquakes.

Kurat withdrew as did the survivors on both sides and then when he found that the tattoo continued to hurt him he bid adieu to Brikklext and headed back to the surface. He had spent years on the surface and only had recently returned to the goblinoid city. He found that so long as he followed a path he didn't really know the tattoo did not hurt, but if he deviated from this path for any length of time the pain returned.

Thus he marched on and it was not long before he could see the eruptions of Mt Doom. The path seemed to lead that way.

This message was last edited by the player at 13:11, Sun 04 Oct 2020.

Chess ala'riina Nasadra
 player, 14 posts
 Drow Sorceress/Oracle
Sun 4 Oct 2020
at 15:40
1: Catastrophe Strikes!
Chess ala'riina was enjoying her nightly bath in the pool of spring water alone in the forest when she got a strange feeling that something was about to happen.  Taking a moment she looked around to make sure that there was no one in the shadows watching or waiting to ambush her.  She knew that one day her mother would come looking for her and she has already dealt with a few assassin attempts on her life.

It seemed that this young Drowess was very attuned the connection of Fate or Destiny for the Universe would always send her some sort of warning beforehand or her Goddess would send visions of things to come.  In either case, Chess ala'riina slowly moved to the edge of the water and took hold of her corset then placing it on.  Then she got out of the water and her fingers started to move as she invoked a spell to See things in True.  Once she was sure there was no body around she continued to dress and then move to where she left her backpack filled with a few things.

Before she bent down to get her backpack a sharp pain burned in the back of her neck a bit below the collar line.  At first she thought she been attacked by some unseen being but then the pain subsided. And then she felt the ground tremble.

Now with her belongs in hand she cast another spell and then she was gone.

Reappearing in the Temple of the Lady of Mystery she wanted to speak to the High Priestess and see what she could unravel of the pain that was on the back of her neck.  It seemed that the High Priestess informed her that a "STAR" shape has formed there.

Chess ala'riina didn't know what to take of it but everyone knew that Mystra's symbol was that in the form of a Star.  Has she been marked again by the Goddess for some reason.  A few days passed and it seemed to cause a burning pain if she were to move in a different direction than North.  After some time she then prepared herself for a long journey and informing the High Priestess that she must leave and seek what Mystery has befallen upon her these recent times.

With no mount and traveling by foot and a bit of Magic, Chess ala'riina reached a place where she was shocked to witness.  Many parts of the land has been covered by ash and soot.  The smell of sulfur was somewhat still lingering in the air.  The land itself was in pain and she called out to the Land to hear what it had to tell her with a spell Whispering Lore.

Her eyes covered over in a pale white color as a vision entered into her mind.  Before the spell ended there was tears flowing down her obsidian skin. So many lives have been lost for what reason, for what purpose.  Something was amidst in these lands.

When she opened her eyes to see the land again her head was in the direction still pointing North.  Gathering what she could and a few drops of these ashes were placed in a vial.  She moved onward till she saw what looked to be a Citadel. Continuing onward she finally reached it and before she entered she looked around and there was no one in sight but the door was ajar.

She moved closer and looked inside.  (Entering the building)
Aniyu
 player, 10 posts
 Human Winter Witch/Druid
Sun 4 Oct 2020
at 16:52
1: Catastrophe Strikes!
Aniyu knew a crucible was coming, but he didn't know what form it would take. The primordial spirits that had guided his family were never direct or obvious, and a burning, complex sigil suddenly forming in the back of his hand was omen enough. He felt the earth shudder even from the distant north, and his mark guided him from his native lands and towards his destiny and duty.

He teleported to the edge of his lands at the beginning of the journey, but he spent much of the rest of the trip flying freely as an air elemental. He didn't know what he was looking for, but the distinct building and the divining rod burned into his hand made it clear this was his destination.

The swirling cloud of snow and wind swirled around the building before stopping above the front door. It coalesced into a pale man in black furs; making it easy to blame the supernatural transformation for the unnatural contrast, but even as the effect ended, no color bloomed in the man -- except for his bright blue eyes.

He approached the door, each step leaving a moment of crisp frost on the ground that quickly melted and evaporated into wisps. Seeing nobody to speak to, he rapped his knuckles against the door before letting himself in...
Lucien Soulban
 player, 16 posts
 Human Paladin/Sorcerer
Mon 5 Oct 2020
at 00:55
1: Catastrophe Strikes!
  Lucien was in Waterdeep visiting the local temple of his order and as was his usual he would use his abilities to help those less fortunate. He felt it was his duty to the common good. He was of Torm's faith but spent time helping the faithful of Ilmater in their daily duties that day.
 When he arrived for the day his old spear wound tingled a little this was normal. He was healing a ship's captain of his sicknesses when Mt. Doom happened. His spear wound burst open and he bled on his tunic. The Ilmateri in charge took this as a good sign of coming trials. Lucien just shook his head and finished with the captain and when he moved on it burned. The wound turned green as it burned.
    He spoke with his superiors and told them he must go in the general direction of the Earthspur Mountains. Something drew him there. As he could teleport he used his flight to go as high as he could after teleporting as far as he could see. And so it went. He avoided most of the darkness in his path for the most part. (A tribe of goblins would argue that.) Eventually he drew close to the area he needed to be at and started hiking eventually coming to the temple door. He says a quick prayer to Helm before crossing the threshold and finding others inside he pulls back his hood and says "Well met. I come seeking answers about the Green Star. Do any of you know about a mark such as that?"
Vashon the Vigilant
 player, 3 posts
 Human Sorcerer/Gunslinger
Mon 5 Oct 2020
at 02:21
1: Catastrophe Strikes!
He was a rambler and a gambling, a gypsy and a wanderer... at least, to his mind. Others might not think so, depending on how you define those words. So, when the tattoo on his arm began hurting and only stopped when he headed in a particular direction that happened to be northeast, he figured that was as good a direction to wander in as any other.

He tried veering off course a few times, and each time, the pain returned, even to the point of worsening the farther he deviated from his course.

He finally decided he was being summoned, although he thought it was a peculiar way to go about it. It also made him wonder (egads! Now he was a wonderer!) about the tattoo. How long ago was it now? Three years? Yeah, that was about right. Days and nights in Tantras. It must have been put there by some wizard... although, truth to tell, anyone could have gotten him drunk enough to do it. Since nothing had come of it, he assumed it was just a lark, someone's idea of a prank.

Now he knew better. Took them long enough!

With the dust of Raven's Bluff several days behind him now, he realized he was being drawn... no, driven... no, not that, either. He was being guided--rather forcefully--to the Earthspur Mountains.

His journey carried him to the foothills, to an old monastery from the looks of the buildings. He caught a glimpse of someone else entering through the open front doors and couldn't help noticing the big green star over and around the entrance. Clearly that was where he was supposed to go, but, being rather stubborn, he attempted to change course and go around the building. Nope, no dice. The pain returned, though not as bad as before. Kind of made sense; he was there

Several minutes later he was walking through the front doors. For some reason that he couldn't quite put a finger on, he didn't feel threatened entering the monastery.

He glanced around curiously, noting that others were also there.
Ki'nae Bashemath
 player, 5 posts
 Gunslinger/Steelfist
 Ballistic Fist Method
Mon 5 Oct 2020
at 03:36
1: Catastrophe Strikes!
Days Earlier...:
"You gonna sit there and mope all day, Bash? That earthquake sounded a little too close for comfort."

Ki'nae groaned, holding her hat on her head as though keeping her brains in. It had been a late night performance, a large one at that, and who would have thought that her theatrics would have gotten her bounty out of hiding to watch? She must have been good. Then again, it was her.

By the time Ki'nae finished hog-tying the rascal she'd already downed her first of many drinks. Now she was feeling them all at once, but that was the kind of pain she was familiar with. This new thing was something...too familiar. For all the ways she lived up to her nickname, it seemed she didn't do a good enough job the first time.

The ground rumbled, like a bad belch from a troll's gut. Is that what'd woke her up?

"Makes sense it'd take an earthquake to wake you up," Llarl went on like he owned the damn world as she stumbled to the pond's edge. Ki'nae'd only been traveling with this troupe for a couple of days. Thank the WEEP she would only have another day before she could drop this square peg.

She splashed a handful of pond water on her face as Llarl continued his beration. "Did you not hear that? You handers are all so self-possed. Why can't you just be more considerate? You'd never see one of us songsouls going about sleeping in the sun, waiting for an act of the very gods to shake us to action. In fact, the sun's not getting any higher, so if you could hurr-"

"Llarl," Ki'nae, from where she kneeled over at the edge of the pond, craned her neck like an angry owl. Some malevolent spirit crept to her shining, firesteel eyes. She shot that dark light to Llarl's impudent gaze.

"Just. Shut. Up."

The giant of a half-man backed away hands up. Ki'nae made sure he wasn't looking before she looked back to the water. Her reflection glared back at her. Sour-mouthed, flared nostrils, squished eyebrows. Just the way she liked to be. Unfortunate that it took a hangover to get there. A gloved hand moved to push her hat up, pull her loose blond locks back out of her face. A chill seized her spine as she saw the green birthmark, felt it, pulsating like a heartbeat's last pumps. What an unpleasantly fast way to sober up.

This mark hadn't been unfamiliar. She recognized its verdant luminescence, faint as stars in a city night. Looked like a star too, its upper spokes threatening to reach into her hairline. There was that faint worry she felt from back then, that the strange mark's touch would turn her blond hair into some sort of green. She was already her mother's throwaway, and a life competing for acceptance in the Courts of Guile filled her dish of disappointment to the brim. The last thing she'd needed was to look like one of those treehugging, twig-up-the-arsers to set her apart.

That's why twenty years ago, with a well-honed rock and a well-honed lie, she'd cut it out.

So why did it come back now?

"Dammit t'darkness, does my head hurt," Ki'nae moaned. It burned. Not in the way of holding her hand over a candle or taking a few barehanded whacks in the bonfire. That was the good, clean kind of burn. This pain was acute, precise. It was the pain of...destiny.

Why would I think this was destiny? Ki'nae bent down and plunged her head into the water. The cold slapped at her face with a wet fish's caress. Did little for the pain though. It just spread its aching behind her eyes, around her skull, to the base of her neck.

"Bash!"
A hand came down on her shoulder. Reflexively Ki'nae pointed her pistol at the face before she saw whose it belonged to. Niyaji just looked at her over the barrel with wild eyes. "We've got to go!"

Ki'nae followed the thin gnome's frantic hands to the mountain in the distance. Just moments ago, the Earthspur mount had been a behemoth boulder. Now down its side came a wave of condensed flames, pouring out like pus gone bad in a young teen's face. That was the kind of zit you ran from.

Ki'nae stood up, brushing her knees off. "Well, well, wouldja look at that..." She knew their were villages clse to their. They were too close themselves. The smells of burning trees was already overpowering their dying cooking fires, and soon flesh would follow behind. There should have been more sorrow there, more disappointment that the snuffed lives were outside of her control. But something inside her pulled at something else. Something in the heat itself smelled like...

Smelled like home?

Ki'nae licked her lips.

"Ain't that some sh-"


"-yster?"

Ki'nae only partially committed to the inquiry. She was, for the third time, rubbing tinfin oil on her pistol just for the extra shine. Really, it was just to do anything to avoid the kid's constant questions. Nothing deterred the young girl's questions, and it's hard to run when they were responsible for leading your mule up the side of a mountain.

"Yeah, shyster." The little half-elf said. She sat on her own mule, the rope of Ki'nae's pack animal firm in her small-fingered grip. "What's dat mean?"

"Where'd you here that from, honey?" Ki'nae asked, her cigarette dancing between her pursed lips.

"From daddy." Ki'nae frowned. "Daddy said he was tired of no-good, sleepyfoot, lay'bout shysters who...mmm..." The little girl crinkled her face with thoughtful intelligence. "Whose very presence...umm...buckles? Buckles, the eh-kaw-noh-mee of good in the world."

Ki'nae sighed, breathing out a puff of smoke. "Shysters aren't t'be trusted, honey. Just make sure that if y'e'er MAKE A BET THAT Y'LOOOOSE AT!" Ki'nae's voice easily carried up ahead to the young girl's father, leading the way, "that yer able t'follow through on yer gamble."

The little girl cocked her head, thoughtfully. "What's a gamb-"

"Ask yer pa, sweet'eart." Ki'nae chucked her pistol into the air. It spun before landing perfectly in the holster at her hip as she took a long drag. "Ask yer pa."

Ever since that earthquake, that Great Shake of Doom, Ki'nae's head had been killing her. The troupe she'd traveled with had kept moving to the nearest township, doing their part to spread their news through their performance. Ki'nae's head had hurt so bad it made her sick. She hadn't drank for days!

It still took a little bit of weebling in the wrong direction before she could wobble in the right one. The Green Star Citadel. A big arse building with a big arse star on the door. Seemed about right.

She could see it now, its imposing frame filling her vision with...destiny.

----------------------------------------------------------------
"Thanks again, Pa!"

Ki'nae exaggerated her parting wave, much to the child's bemusement. Her father didn't bother looking back from where he dropped her off. "Good riddance to you too, buddy," She muttered, putting out her cigarette beneath a wineblood-colored boot. She marched forward, hat tilted sideways over her eyes, chin stretched out as she entered the citadel. Like any good Guiler, she made sure to spit respectfully before passing along the threshold.

"Well met. I come seeking answers about the Green Star."

What the...? There were others here?

Who're all these freaks? She really didn't think of the term as an insult. Yet not a single soul looked completely...normal. There was a man so pale he looked like snow itself. Then there was one of those treehuggers that didn't hug trees (cavehugger?) A tall'un with a hat seemed just as curious as the rest of 'em, but the red eyes weren't exactly standard fare in these parts. In any parts really Some other brown-haired guy that looked too...Ki'nae didn't know. Him being in the same space as these guys already made him suspect, but his tawny skin and brown eyes were well...she didn't know.

The one talking now, the pretty boy with the red hair, had her full attention.

"Do any of you know about a mark such as that?"

"What'd you know 'bout it, pardner?" Ki'nae put her hands on her hips, pulling the heat out of her gaze enough to make her look less interrogative. Her stone-cold face was something she wasn't keen on fixing any time ever. "Yew here fer a...healin', mayhaps?"

Ki'nae glanced about, looking about at each arrivee as though she was inspecting them.

"All yuns here fer somethin' mayhaps...ailin' ya?"

This message was last edited by the player at 11:59, Mon 05 Oct 2020.

Lucien Soulban
 player, 17 posts
 Human Paladin/Sorcerer
Mon 5 Oct 2020
at 03:58
1: Catastrophe Strikes!
 "I'm usually the one doing the healing. So no I'm not here for that. I was called here for some reason and I merely wish to know why. I take it you have a similar issue yourself."
Tyrol Halverschlagen
 player, 4 posts
 Gnome Alchemist/Rogue
 AC: 29/18/25; HP: 120/120
Mon 5 Oct 2020
at 04:12
Re: 1: Catastrophe Strikes!
Lucien Soulban:
  "Well met. I come seeking answers about the Green Star. Do any of you know about a mark such as that?"


"You mean other than the big green star on the front of the building?" Tyrol replies to Lucien. "Yeah, I got one on my ass! No, really! I have a birthmark on my butt in the shape of a green star. If I wasn't heading for this place, it literally gave me a pain in the ass!"

"So, you got a green star on your butt, too?"

"Huh. Imagine that! I'm a healer, too! Bet that's why we're all here. Some sort of plague."

"By the way, my name's Tyrol Halverschlagen."
the Gnome finished.

This message was last edited by the player at 15:41, Mon 05 Oct 2020.

Lucien Soulban
 player, 18 posts
 Human Paladin/Sorcerer
Mon 5 Oct 2020
at 04:39
Re: 1: Catastrophe Strikes!
  "Interesting. And no mine was from a spear strike years ago. formed in the shape of a star and turned green just a little while ago. Some considered it an omen of some kind. I laughed and asked if they knew the color of the sky too. I hope it is not a plague those are less fun than they sound like."
Aniyu
 player, 11 posts
 Human Winter Witch/Druid
Mon 5 Oct 2020
at 05:33
Re: 1: Catastrophe Strikes!
Aniyu continued into the fated building that his burning scar demanded, and towards the voices. His bright eyes glanced around, still trying to learn more about the location itself -- and whomever owned it.

He gave a polite nod to each of those assembled, raising a hand up in a still wave of greeting, "I am Aniyu." He glanced around again, "I am from quite a distance away and did not know where my mark was guiding me. Does anybody know the purpose of this building or who owns it?"
Vogh Kath
 player, 3 posts
 Human Bard/Oracle
Mon 5 Oct 2020
at 11:26
Re: 1: Catastrophe Strikes!
Vogh had served many summers upon the Seagull as their bard and healer.  Her particular professions had done wonders at defeating many pirates in the Sea of Fallen Stars.  Vogh was particularly enamored by Arya and her leadership abilities, and other less known abilities which is why Arya liked having Vogh on her ship, The Seagull.

Having just defeated another pirate ship and gathering what was left of the pirate crew, Vogh saw something off to the north.  It seemed like some sort of explosion, but HUGE in scale.  It was then that she felt something burning her on the back of her neck.  Ignoring the pain on her neck, Vogh had helped complete their task and so the ship began to return Procampur.  The pain in her neck eased up as she made her voyage, leaving her to believe it was nothing.

The growing cloud in the sky to the north was something though.  It was something that Vogh had decided to check out.  Vogh left the Seagull and bade her farewells to the crew, especially Arya.  Vogh traveled the miles to the north not knowing what she would find but she knew she had to find out what had happened.

As she drew close to the Mt. Doom, which she didn't know was the cause of the explosion, Vogh began to hear tales of the destruction.  Many more miles, Vogh spotted a structure off in the distance.  A fortress of some sort and as she drew near she saw that it was a citadel.  Drawing nearer still, Vogh saw the green star over the door which brought back a memory Arya had told her about what was on her neck.  She described it perfectly as the symbol over this very door.

Throwing caution to the wind, as she often had quite literally, Vogh entered the structure.  Upon entering she found others inside speaking to each other somewhat casually.  Vogh wore simple but clean traveling clothes.  She carried on her back a well-worn pack and quiver along with a bow.  On her hip was a scabbard with a blade sheathed, the pommel had a black stone inside.  Even as her clothes were plain, her looks were anything but.  Vogh wore her brown curly hair down, which reached midway down her back and covered her ample chest.  Her figure looked to be quite strong but agile with long legs.

Being somewhat shy with people she didn't know at all, Vogh gave a meek smile and said, "Hello, I am Vogh.  Can anyone tell me what this place is?"

This message was last edited by the player at 07:36, Today.

Ki'nae Bashemath
 player, 6 posts
 Gunslinger/Steelfist
 Ballistic Fist Method
Mon 5 Oct 2020
at 12:39
1: Catastrophe Strikes!
"I'm usually the one doing the healing. So no I'm not here for that. I was called here for some reason and I merely wish to know why. I take it you have a similar issue yourself."

Ki'nae nodded before mumbling, "Not one fer the healin' arts m'self," then was about to reply until someone started talking all about their backside. It took her longer than she felt comfortable to pinpoint the white-haired gnome. Even if they barely came up to her waist, the hair should've been easy to spot.

Maybe I ought to keep an eye on him, she pondered, knowing all too well how futile the idea was. Not for want of trying. It was quickly getting full in here.

How many shared in the Green Star Story? Did they feel the connection to the mountain's destruction like she did? Did all their stars appear in wild ways in wild places, from head to arse to toes?

At least Ki'nae had names, now. Tyrol, Aniyu, and Vogh. Better than her own assigned monikers: starbutt, powderpale, and...curls? Curls would've been fine. But it wasn't their name, so she reckoned she shouldn't call her that.

"Seems we're all wonderin' what's goin' 'round these parts. E'er since that mount'n blew its top like a mad teapot. I'm sher all yew," - she made sure not to wince, hiding her expression behind a mask devoid of the suspicion she felt - "fine individuals are lookin' fer answers to yer rather inerestin' marks."

"I don't exactly have a home m'self. A bit of a wanderer, if I may." There was enough truth to the lie to make it seem right. Her home was wherever another troupe would have been. "Any y'all hail from closer by?" She had been new to this part of the land. Perhaps she could get some more information out of these sorts. With all of her social prowess, it only seemed to come about through pressure and performance.

And punching. Definitely theough punching.

This message was last edited by the player at 15:17, Mon 05 Oct 2020.

Lucien Soulban
 player, 19 posts
 Human Paladin/Sorcerer
Mon 5 Oct 2020
at 14:49
1: Catastrophe Strikes!
 "Since we a sharing names mines Lucien. Spent to much time traveling lately. Came all the way here from Waterdeep so no local environment is not really something I know. Giant volcano that way that's about it." he points in the general direction of Mt. Doom.
Vashon the Vigilant
 player, 4 posts
 Human Sorcerer/Gunslinger
Mon 5 Oct 2020
at 15:38
1: Catastrophe Strikes!
For some reason, Vashon felt the urge to speak up. Or was it the 'need' to speak up? He wasn't particularly a loner, but very few wanderers had company for long.

"To be precise, it isn't a star--it's a pentacle. A star is either solid or doesn't have the inner lines. In the latter case, it's an outline of a star," he explained.

"As I'm sure most of you already know, the pentacle has magical and mystical properties. Laymen and ordinary folk tend to call anything that's star-shaped a 'star'."

"I am Vashon. There is most assuredly a connection between the volcano's eruption and the green star tattoo on my arm causing me pain. It's too late to help any of the villages and people that were affected by the eruption, so I'd guess it has something to do with the volcano itself. It's... logical."

Jarvis Martel
 NPC, 1 post
 Old Human Retired Warrior
 Green Star Sage
Mon 5 Oct 2020
at 16:28
1: Catastrophe Strikes!
You are all standing in a large round room about 60 feet in diameter with a 20 foot ceiling. Presumably, there is another room above that has the dome.

The side walls have curved buttresses around the perimeter, and the ceiling is painted with an image of a sun, moons and stars in a darkish blue background that could be interpreted as a daytime sky or a nighttime sky. There are four openings in the side walls, at the cardinal points of a compass. You entered through the south double doors, which were open, and you can see three stout wooden bars mounted to the wall beside the doors that can be slid into place to bar them closed. The north door is similar; it, too, is open, revealing a garden beyond. The two side openings do not appear to have doors.

The floor of this central room is a mosaic of a green star pentacle... until you realize that there is a circular band around the whole pentacle, thus transforming it into a pentagram. There is a 5-foot wide walkway on the outside of the pentagram.

A man walks in from the garden at that point. He is older though not necessarily elderly. He has white hair and light beard. He is wearing what could be scholarly or monk's robes, though not as austere as the latter usually are.

"Greetings!" he calls out to everyone as he walk into the center of the pentagram. "I am your host, Jarvis Martel, the Elder of this monastery."

"I am sure you are all wondering why you were drawn here. I assure you, it was not of my doing, but, under other circumstances, I am equally sure I would have done the same."

"This monastery does have a real name. We here at the monastery refer to it as the Citadel when we must, and the locals here about call it the Green Star Citadel... for obvious reasons."

"We've always had a resident Oracle, and it is she that... well, summoned you here, somewhat indirectly."

"Some 500 or so years ago, the Great Oracle Esmeralda had a vision. It was of a time when there would be great destruction across the land. Rumor had it that signaled the end of the world. We here at the monastery do not believe that, mainly because Esmeralda founded this monastery with the intended purpose of preventing that destruction."

"Alas, she had no way of knowing when this would happen. That, of course, is the curse of the Oracle. That, and often no one believes them."

"Esmeralda set into motion several events. She started by having the Green Star Wonders created. And then she started the Green Star Cycle."

"The Green Star Wonders are 12 magical devices that have the green star motif. Although slightly powerful alone, together they are meant to be greater than just the sum of the parts."

"The Green Star Cycle is... you. I suppose  you could think of it as a bloodline, but it doesn't really get passed down through the blood. Yet, into each generation, there are born those that can wield the Wonders effectively and stop the impending destruction."

"How she accomplished this is beyond my comprehension. I am not even sure it is true... and, yet, here you are."

"Our current Oracle saw an event, but could not for certain say that it was a volcano erupting. Even had she known that and warned the people, they would not have listened. But, the destruction is not over. Whether she activated the Cycle herself, or whether it happened on its own because this IS the event... who can say?"

"It has fallen to me to interpret what this means. I have done so... to the best of my ability. I believe it means that you are the twelve that must find the Wonders and stop the destruction. Prevent the destruction? Or, perhaps, stop the cause of the destruction."

"Because of the activation coinciding with the eruption, I would suggest that your first task is to investigate the volcano."

"I hope I have covered everything, but if you have any questions, I will answer them to the best of my ability."

This message was last edited by the player at 21:42, Mon 05 Oct 2020.

Aniyu
 player, 12 posts
 Human Winter Witch/Druid
Mon 5 Oct 2020
at 17:26
1: Catastrophe Strikes!
Aniyu turned looked to each who entered, offering a stoic, but polite nod to each. When Jarvis announced himself as their host, he turned his body more to give him more of his attention.

He stayed quiet as he listened to the details, waiting for the invitation before raising a pale hand up to speak, "What do we know about the Green Star Wonders? Their forms or their location, or even individual names to do our own research? Or is that something you could gather for us while we investigate the volcano?"
Ozrus Wither
 player, 4 posts
 Elf Druid/Wizard
Mon 5 Oct 2020
at 18:40
1: Catastrophe Strikes!
Ozrus had managed to slink into the room just before Jarvis began speaking and was able to gather quite a bit of information while listening to the man speak. It appeared he was not the only one with a green star mark. Not only that, but everyone else who had gathered here appeared to be capable individuals, like himself. These people had... life experience.

Ozrus's own journey to the monastery had not been all that eventful. He had been relaxing on a sunny beach far far away when the scar on his shoulder first began to bother him. It was a nasty scar he had received from an octopus attack when he dove too deep as a barracuda a few days prior. He had promptly healed the wound with his magic, but it still left a notable scar, which hadn't really happened before.

After the scar started do bother him and it became clear he was being prompted in a specific direction, he decided to see where he was being let to. He traveled by air, by sea, and even by tree. For several days he had roamed the land, unknowingly getting ever closer to the monastery. When it became clear he was being led in the general direction of the newly erupted Mt. Doom, he made a stop at a large city and purchased some permanent fire protection in the form of a ring. He had arrived in the vicinity of the monastery the prior evening, but decided he should rest up before zeroing on his final destination.

And it turned out he had nearly overslept, since he had only just barely made it to the monastery in time to join the gathering crowd.

He stood at the back of the crowd, shirtless and with his arms crossed. He looked over everyone present and silently judged them, but not in a malicious way. More so he was trying to get a feel for the people he had been unknowingly bound to. In the end he shrugged and decided to just go with it. After all, he had come all this way. May as well see how it played out.

"And what do you know of this Mt. Doom? Was there anything notable about it before it erupted? he asked Jarvis. Then he gave a tiny wave to the group. Especially to those who had not yet noticed his arrival. "I'm Ozrus, by the way. Ozrus Wither. I'm... not typically known for my punctuality..."
Hsang Li Tsung
 player, 2 posts
 Samurai/Rogue
Mon 5 Oct 2020
at 19:09
1: Catastrophe Strikes!
Hsang stood calmly to one side listening to the frantic questions of these others.  If he had been the Oracle this place would be full of clues that might help but even then the situation made little sense unless the goal was the journey not the outcome.

Turning he begins to inspect the room to see if he could glean anything from that.
Kurat
 player, 13 posts
 Hobgoblin Monk/Wizard
Mon 5 Oct 2020
at 19:14
1: Catastrophe Strikes!
"What is the difference between the Green Star Wonders and the Green Star Cycles?" Kurat asked because the man seemed to speak in riddles. He first stated they were them and then said they should find themselves, but clearly they were already here.
Chess ala'riina Nasadra
 player, 17 posts
 Drow Sorceress/Oracle
Mon 5 Oct 2020
at 19:20
1: Catastrophe Strikes!
Chess ala'riina was surely the far most noticeable of all in the room but she had Aniya second to match with his pale colors compare to her obsidian skin and silver hair.  Her deep blue eyes was captivating if looked at in the right angle.

She found a spot where she took pleasure in relaxing and listening to all what was being said and who all announced themselves.

Her eyes moved over all as they entered after her and those that was here before her.  As if she was wondering why haven't she met, seen or heard of anyone before.

The dark blue orbs moved to Jarvis Martel, the Elder of this monastery when he walked in from the doorway leading into a garden.  Listening to his words was best.
A slight smirk crossed her face when he spoke about Oracles.  For she too knew much about them.  Her mind raced when the mentioning of Esmeralda.  It was a name she heard of before and might be able to find someone who might be able to tell more about her.  But finding the Old Wizard was a dangerous task, more dangerous than a living volcano.

Watching as more people walked into the room.  It was starting to fill up quickly.


15:18, Today: Chess ala'riina Nasadra rolled 33 using 1d20+19.  Esmeralda .

Jarvis Martel
 NPC, 2 posts
 Old Human Retired Warrior
 Green Star Sage
Mon 5 Oct 2020
at 21:19
Re: 1: Catastrophe Strikes!
Aniyu:
"What do we know about the Green Star Wonders? Their forms or their location, or even individual names to do our own research? Or is that something you could gather for us while we investigate the volcano?"



"We believe we know the forms of the Wonders," Jarvis answers the questions posed. "Their symbols are painted on the walls of this room: armor, shield, sword, ring, wand, staff, medallion, cloak, hat, boots, gloves, and bracers. As you can probably guess, one person could not possibly wear or wield all these things."

"As to where they are, I do not know, nor does anyone here at the monastery. According to Esmeralda's journal, she felt that keeping them all in one place, especially here, would be an invitation for someone or someones to try and get them. Steal them, attack the monastery, whatever it took. Remember, no one believed her prophecy."

"She arranged to have them scattered and hidden around the area. I couldn't say how far away any of them might be."

"Those are the Wonders... I suppose that sounds better than 'things' or 'treasures' or 'loot' or whatever other euphemism you might come up with."

"You and the others that have been drawn here,"
he directs at Kurat, "are the Cycle. Again, not my choice of words. It was meant to keep going from generation to generation because Esmeralda did not know when it would happen."

"Mt. Doom? Is that what they are calling it? Not surprising, I guess, since it probably brought doom to a lot of people and places. Although I'm a scholar, my area of expertise is not geology. I have no knowledge of the mountain before it erupted, but I do not believe anyone thought it was an inactive volcano that could once again erupt."