Zg Session 84

Winter 31st
Angus Perasmus leads you over to a nearby stream to wash off the remnants of the battle with the Wriggling Dread.
Zane: "Well that was utterly vile."
Zane‘ just wades in and starts scrubbing. Abomination puke isn’t going to clean itself.
Gerald: "Yeah not a fan."
Chandrasekhar: "It wasn't called the Wriggling Rosebush." He calmly cleanses disgusting guck off of himself and his armour.
Zane: "Nah that was a different case, in the Feywood. Pushover compared to that thing."
Angus: "You said you were looking for some ruins, right? Why here?"
Zane: "Helping to cure somenes amnesia."
Phyllis: "It's the site of a … historical event."
Angus: "Pala, then?"
Phyllis: "And Methia."
Angus raises an eyebrow. "That's a fair bit farther."
Zane: "Its been a real trip, yeah."
Chandrasekhar barks out a laugh at Zane.
Angus: "As it happens, there's a Monument to Pala a couple miles from here."
Zane: "Oh?"
Angus: "Yes. I'm a member of an order here called the Fists of Pala, and I watch over the monument."
Aleith|DM: Once you're all washed up, he leads you into the forest.
Chandrasekhar pauses, bows in salute to Angus, continues washing himself up.
Zane: "An order devoted to punching things in the name of spiritual harmony? I'm intrigued."
Aleith|DM: The Monument of Pala is located in a ten-foot diameter grove, at the center of which is a small standing stone. The stone is engraved with text in the common tongue, but of an older style and with embellishments common in the first decades following the Second Victory.
Aleith|DM: The monument reads:
A dream that shall endure beyond the destruction of stone,
A brotherhood undaunted by atrocities of the mighty,
Their bodies shall be strengthened by this good labor,
To spread his words, an offering to the world,
Until the dream may become reality.
Zane: "Heh. Hey Singh. The atrocities of the mighty."
Angus: "We believe this stone was placed at the exact site where Pala's founder, William Miller, was burned upon a pyre of his own books."
Phyllis: "Who do you think placed it? Did he have followers? Admirers?"
Chandrasekhar reads the inscription; meets Zane's eyes. …in deference to Angus, he says nothing, but he does not pay his respects.Once he would have considered this sacred ground, but the truth has burnt that away.
Garrett: "'Death is but a door, time is but a window…?' Hm, no, wait, that's not on here." He circle the monument a bit more.
Angus: "I'm not really sure. There were a number of survivors."
Kasvarina: "Shall I…?"
Gerald: "Go for it."
Garrett: "Whenever you're ready." He rests his palms on the ends of his daggers.
Kasvarina puts on the Arc, then orients herself around the stone and walks a few feet away. The stone of the monument shimmers, moving like wet paint being pushed across a canvas. The forest around you smears into a small city glowing orange from scattered fires. In a moment, the clearing transforms into a beautiful courtyard, with a simple stone bench where the monument was. A bald, bearded man sits there, reading a book by the light of the city being razed around him.
A group of scholars frantically try to save documents from a nearby burning library. Men and women make suicidal runs into the collapsing structure to save as much documentation as they can from the flames. From the other direction, soldiers are visible through the haze of heat for the light glinting from their armor as they march down the thoroughfare. The air is thick with aromatic smoke.
A bloodied sword in hand, Kasvarina steps up to the figure seated on the bench. She breathes heavily like she's run here. "William," she says, "you need to go. The city is gone, but there's still a chance. I can get us away from here."
With a wave of his right hand, the man brushes her off. He closes his book and looks at the soldiers, who'll be on them in minutes.
He asks, "Isn't there anything I can do to effect a real change? We were naïve at the island, and then…Methia. I thought this place could be a bastion of sanity, and again the damned Clergy takes my best intentions and destroys them. No, Rina, I am done running."
Kasvarina grabs his shoulders, sobbing. "William, please just come with me. It’s risky, but we can teleport away."
She tries to grab his hand, but he pushes her back. "If I run they'll call me a coward and all this will be wasted." He glances to the soldiers, now only a few hundred feet away. "If I die, I might do more good than I ever did alive."
Kasvarina: "William, no." She follows his gaze, then shakes him. "Dammit, William! We can just live. We don't need to fight. We can just be together."
William: "We could be, yes. But then we'd be distracted, and another thousand people could die because I gave in to complacency. This is not a world ruled by the good, Rina. Now go. They'll kill me, I'll find a new body, and we can start the fight again. There’s no more time by idle, halcyon dreaming.” He stands, gives her a short kiss, then sits back down.
Her voice catches, and forces out, “Please no, William. I can't watch my world be destroyed again. "
William: "These people killed your daughter! They destroyed your world before, and they'll keep doing it until we take control and make the world we know is best. Run. You don't come back like I do. The next time you see me, call me Nicodemus."
Gerald: "…Huh she knew he was a … whatever he is."
Kasvarina turns and runs, and the memory fades as the soldiers close in and surround William Miller, defiantly reading. Then the memory fades and flickers to several hours later. Miller stands strapped to a tall wooden stake, atop a pile of books. Kasvarina hides around the corner of a building at the edge of the courtyard, watching Clergy priests declaring Miller's heresies as they light the pyre.
Zane: "Huh."
Aleith|DM: Kasvarina comes out of the memory weeping.
Chandrasekhar: "…history's great martyr knew he would survive his pyre, then. I had wondered if this was his first death, or… I'm sorry, Kasvarina."
Kasvarina: "We saw him after he came back in Ushanti, but I recall now that he was never the same as when he was William Miller."
Zane: "I'd imagine dying takes it out of you."
Kasvarina: "I can't help but wonder how much of my loyalty to him was because I hoped to reclaim that happy time…"
Angus: "You were there?" He seems amazed.
Zane: "She's the one with the amnesia, yeah."
Garrett: "It's a long story."
Garrett: "In both time and explanation."
Phyllis: "Centuries long."
Phyllis: "Hm. He was never the same as when he was William Miller, as … you aren't the same as the previous Kasvarinas?"
Kasvarina: "Everyone changes moment-to-moment. That's what the Mindmaker's goal seems to have been, wiping my memory."
Zane: "Well. This is certainly an interesting way of putting it back together."
Kasvarina: "It seems like it was coming back anyway, but it would've probably taken a few years. And I wouldn't have had some of the same insights. Like with Sor Daeron, or that church in Alais Primos…"
Zane: "Makes me wonder what is going to happen when we get to Methia."
Phyllis: "Miller, the Clergy. I don't think either party is innocent here."
Twins- Ethan is asking if you have seen "Devil may crybaby"
[OOC] Chandrasekhar: Wrong channel!
Chandrasekhar: "I imagine none of us are under any illusions as to the Clergy's innocence. Nicodemus' intent does not change the fact that Pala was a vision of hope, that its destruction was a tragedy."
Angus seems confused. "Nicodemus? That's what he asked you to call him…the next time you saw him?"
Zane: "It's… its complicated."
Chandrasekhar: "And yet I find myself wondering: who benefits from Pala's legacy? From the faith shown by those who remember his writings?"
Gerald: "He's basically a ghost that possesses people but isn't actually a ghost."
Zane‘ looks at Singh. "That question would be a lot harder to answer if we didn’t know Ashima. Think on that."
Chandrasekhar: "I am, Mr. Bieito." He sighs.
Phyllis: "Does the name hold any significance for you, or are you just perplexed on why he'd change his name at all?"
Angus: "I don't really know."
Zane: "Kasvarina. Do you know if he started as Miller, or had he been jumping lives before then?"
Kasvarina: "Hmmm. It's still kind of fuzzy, but I think I called him Nicodemus. During the time I spent recovering in the chruch, he mentioned that some of his fellow monks called him 'Nicodemus the Gnostic' after both his views and his habit of smoking. William Miller was his real name then, however."
Zane: "Mm."
Phyllis: "Why would they call him that because of his views? Unless you only mean his views applied to 'the Gnostic' part."
Kasvarina: "Well, yes. Nicodemus is only because he smokes a lot."
Garrett‘ chokes on a laugh.
Phyllis: "I wonder how those leaves were named."
Zane: "It’s all a part of the grand conspiracy, I'm sure."
Phyllis: "I can't tell if you're joking or if you're serious."
Garrett: "About the name or the conspiracy?"
Phyllis: "The latter."
Zane: "Joking, with a quiet certitude that somehow it WILL all be part of the conspiracy and bite me on the ass later."
Zane: "Angus, thank you, you've been a marvelous guide."
Phyllis: "I think we all know where my mind would run with it."
Aleith|DM: Angus bids you farewell, and thanks you again for dealing with the Malice Beast that had been troubling these parts. It takes you a couple of days to hike back to Orithea, picking up your new supplies from the Roscommon before catching the train to Cherage the next morning.
Zane: "So. Methia. Smack in the heart of a magic-dead zone."
Aleith|DM: Once there, turns out that Amielle's former workshop has been turned into a fancy restaurant, the walls adorned with guns.
Aleith|DM: There is, in fact, a memory event in there.
Gerald: "Heheh."
Phyllis: "I would offer advice on how to enter without notice, but, um."
Garrett: "Yeah, that's gonna be a fun one."
Phyllis: "I fear my usual methods are of no use."
Zane: "Try and restrain yourself."
Gerald‘ pokes his head into the restaurant, curious if it’s even busy at this time of day.
Aleith|DM: It's evening, so it's time for the dinner rush
Gerald‘ turns back to the group. "Not it on telling them to clear out, place it packed."
Phyllis: "Though I do know of some devas in there. I wonder if we could contact them somehow and request entry."
Garrett: "Do they do dinner and a show here? Maybe with some fast talk, we could, y’know, convince a few people that's what's going on."
Garrett: "(Phyllis' idea is probably better.)"
Zane: "Could just wait until the place is closed. Talk to the owners."
Gerald: "Pretty sure she's still talking about the city ruins, not this here eatery."
Phyllis: "Gerald's correct. My thoughts on the restaurant were along the same line as Zane's."
Garrett‘ smiles and shrugs. "I was interested if it would have been related, yeah."
Zane: "Oh. One thing at a time. You know us half orcs aint got much brains. I get confused."
Zane` looks dumbfounded, for effect.
Gerald: "Well okay. Might as well get something to eat while we wait then." And he heads on in for real.
Aleith|DM: The wait’ll be about 30 minutes.
Zane: "Deal."
Chandrasekhar stares at Zane, deadpan.
Aleith|DM: Eventually, you're seated and have some Danoran food.
Zane: "Mm. I may not much care for their royal family, but these people know how to cook and that's a fact."
Garrett: "Yeah, our usual world-trotting could stand to be intersperced with more of this from time to time."
Chandrasekhar: "Can't argue with that."
Zane: "Maybe when I retire I'll open up a catering service. Specializes is delivering food to shitty dungeons and lost ruins and crap."
Kasvarina laughs. "Although they'd probably have to contact you via sending."
Garrett: "That's half of the fun."
Aleith|DM: A few hours later, the restaurant starts closing down for the night.
Zane: "OK so who is talking? I nominate myself for 'stand at the door and look ominous'."
Phyllis motions at the others and flags down a waiter. "Excuse us - thank you very much for the meal, by the way, no concerns about that. We were wondering if it'd be okay to use the place for a moment to help a friend recall some old memories."
Garrett: "I got it, one second." He goes to find the owners, or at least the general managers.
Aleith|DM: It doesn't take you long to find the owner; they're still onsite.
Phyllis: She'll defer to Garrett after what she asked, at least.
Zane: "Nice."
Zane‘ relocates to the door and crosses his arms, leaning against the frame.
Garrett` brings up that they’re a travelling group on a pilgrimage, and that one of their compatriots has some fond memories of back when this place was still a workshop, and oh couldn't you just give us a minute past closing so she can pay her respects and we can move on?
Aleith|DM: Diplomacy?
Garrett‘ rolled 1d20+19 and got 8 ( Total: 27 )
Aleith|DM: The owner is moved by your story, and lets you go ahead with it. They’re mostly cleaned up out front, anyway.
Garrett: "Thank you ever so much," he warmly confides, before heading back to the group.
Garrett: "We're good, whenever you're ready."
Garrett: "And whenever it's… relatively clear."
Aleith|DM: In the memory-event, Kasvarina and Nicodemus speak with a very-much-alive Amielle, telling her that she needs to undertake a risky bit of diplomacy. They're sending her to Flint, to help the king deal with a witch problem.
Aleith|DM: There isn't much to the event, but Kasvarina muses that it was probably to help push Risur towards adopting industry.
Gerald: "…Wonder why he'd care about that?"
Kasvarina: "They couldn't build Borne in Danor, after all."
Gerald: "Ah, good point."
Zane: "I wonder how long the Jierres have been in on this."
Kasvarina: "My intuition tells me we might find out at our next stop."
Aleith|DM: After you leave the restaurant, she asks, "how are we planning to get there and inside the city, anyway? This is something like enemy territory for you now, yes?"
Gerald: "Uhh… Phyllis said something about friends?"
Phyllis: "… contacts, at least."
Garrett: "Better than nothing."
Zane: "More polite than my plans, at any rate."
Phyllis: "Magical methods of infiltration are right out."
Phyllis runs stuff through her head - anyone to possibly contact by sending? A name instead of just "hey there's some people here?" A letter, even if it'd take a few days?
Zane: "Yeah I was gonna light half the place on fire, since they have to fight it the old-fashioned way it'll keep them busy for hours."
Gerald: "Lets call that plan C."
Zane: "Wasn't planning to lead with it, yeah."
Aleith|DM: It's not possible to contact anyone there via sending.
Phyllis: Physical letter, then. But to … what address? Who even delivers there?
Aleith|DM: Nobody does. That's the problem.
Phyllis: What name, even? She just knows they exist.
Phyllis: "We might have to, Zane. Or we could go in on a ship that's not flying Risuran colors."
Kasvarina: "Didn't you mention that you stole a ship of theirs from those 'decidedly-not-Danoran-Marines' you ran into?"
Gerald: "Oh yeah that's a good point, we DO have a Danoran vessel."
Gerald: "And could just sail up the river."
Garrett: "It's not stealing if they attack you and you kill them and take their stuff."
Ernst: "Hmmm. You don't think Lauryn Cyneberg would have any ideas on how to infiltrate, would you?"
Gerald: "Who?"
Zane: "Then its… … Shit what is the word for that, Garrett?"
Ernst: "The RHC's infiltration specialist. The woman who teleported Delft to our ship earlier."
Garrett: "Reappropriating, I suppose."
Gerald: "Oh her."
Phyllis: "The one that looked pretty disappointed at us after our incident with Borne. Yes. Should I Send for her advice?"
Gerald: "I imagine asking how best to slip into Methia without anyone noticing without any context will probably make for a fun couple of sendings so why not."
Garrett: "I think we could use it, yeah."
Aleith|DM: Alright. You'll have to board your ship and sail a few hours away from the coast to get out of the dead magic field, but you can do that if you want to send to her.
[OOC] Garrett: yeah we'll take the time to do it right
Aleith|DM: Alright. What're you asking her?
Phyllis at least asks the others to confirm before Sending for real: "About to infiltrate area with Danor military presence and no magic. Do you have advice on avoiding Danoran detection in Methia?"
[OOC] Garrett: "If you were a nosy investigator infiltrating a dead magic zone, how would you best use a fake ship to get into the middle twentyfive"
[OOC] Garrett: yeah see we're on the same wavelength <3
Zane: "We could probably get by with some fake uniforms and forged papers, honestly. A little disguise work and poof."
Garrett: "I more or less expect that to be the answer, with a bit of 'here's something you may not know about.'"
Garrett: "But, you know, I haven't applied foundation in forever, so I'm using the extra time to brush up on it."
Zane: "Its like riding a bike. light for the shadowy areas, dark for the raised areas, medium tone for new highlights. Bam, new face."
Cyneburg: "Go quietly. Might be able to teleport nearby due to complex 'tides' in dead magic. Will send more details. Disguises might help, avoid alerting patrols."
Zane: "Hahahaha*gasp*Ahahahaha 'go quietly'."
Aleith|DM: About 30 minutes later, a stack of papers teleport onto your ship's teleportation circle. There's some notes describing the complex tides she was talking about, but you'd need to an Arcana check to figure out where you could teleport to at any certain time. She's also sent a scroll that will let you teleport to those coordinates, despite the lack of a teleportation circle. The same tides should allow you to escape once you leave the city.
Aleith|DM: She's also provided some drawings of Danoran army uniforms, with a note that 'Bieito can probably do something with these.' She mentions that if you'd rather sail up, the Sovereign's Knife you captured could probably do for you. The submersible capabilities should let you sail under the naval force at the harbour to continue sailing upriver.
Aleith|DM: Unfortunately, they don't have any maps of the city they can provide.
Zane: "Aw, she even spelled my name right."
Aleith|DM: Some of the other papers confirm the various other information about the city that you've recalled.
Aleith|DM: Reports say there's a couple of brigades stationed in the city and another brigade's worth in the greater region outside the city.
Gerald: "oh. oh man. I almost forgot that thing was submersable. Yeah once we're past the navy line I don't think most people would even give us a second thought."
Garrett: "It's a unique design, which concerns me, but…"
Garrett: "So long as we commit to an in-and-out, we should be fine…?"
Zane: "See? See? Brigades. You know what else is brigades other than soldiers? Firefighters. It's not a coincidince."
Gerald: "Oh yeah just, no one's going to think too hard about a ship that already cleared its entrance with the blockade out front, yeah?"
Phyllis: "Zane don't set anything on fire until we've exhausted all other options."
Chandrasekhar: "Mr. Bieito, if I didn't know you better I'd suspect of you of an unhealthy enthusiasm for fire."
Chandrasekhar: "As it is, I know you have a /perfectly healthy/ enthusiasm for fire, and am thus reassured."
Phyllis: "The Theater of Scoundrels should remain an exception."
Zane: "That was a perfectly controlled bit of demolition work and I will remain proud of it."
Phyllis: "Anyway. Outfits and papers. Teleportation through the tides." (The Arcana shouldn't be an issue.) "Avoiding the brigades if possible."
Phyllis: "Anything else?"
Zane: "The ride in the submersible would be kinda cool."
Zane: "But I dont want to leave it behind."
Phyllis looks over the coordinates. Where, uh… does the teleportation scroll actually lead to?
Aleith|DM: The arcana check figures out the coordinates, which you'd write in on the scroll before using it.
Aleith|DM: She included notes for how to modify it. On the way out, you'd be teleporting back to an inscribed circle, presumeably.
Phyllis: The Roscommon, most likely, yeah.
Phyllis: Well, may as well.
Phyllis rolled d20+26 and got 15 ( Total: 41.0 ) for Arcana!
Aleith|DM: Yeah, not a problem. You figure out an area in the wilderness about fifty miles out from Methia where a brief gap will allow you to teleport in.
Phyllis: "Remind me to ask her how she figured this out."
Zane: "It's her job."
Zane: "Her job is literally to be the sneakiest person in the RHC."
Gerald: "It's not like we've waged four wars with these people in recent memory or anything…"
Phyllis: "You know what I mean."
Phyllis: "Either way, I can take us about fifty miles north."
Zane: "I'll see about some uniforms."
Aleith|DM: Once you're ready, you teleport into the depths of Danor, something rarely, if ever, done in the last several centuries. From there, it's a couple days' hike through the wilds to Methia. Three miles out, you feel an odd sensation wash over you as the dead magic field becomes absolute.
Aleith|DM: The most prominent landmark of Methia—the broken tower known as the Lance of Triegenes—is visible over the horizon from three miles away, at the edge of the dead magic zone.
Aleith|DM: Upon seeing it, Kasvarina feels drawn to it, or more particularly to a spot high above it, the top two-thirds having collapsed over the past five centuries. She can sense other memories floating at spots lower on the tower, but she knows something momentous happened high up there.
[OOC] Aleith|DM: https://imgur.com/a/hTZOY
Zane‘ ponders. And then tries to turn the Arsenal into something that isn’t a rock.
Gerald: "…Wow okay that's definitely More Dead Than Normal if even *I* felt that."
Aleith|DM: All of you feel ill at ease and even a bit feeble.
[OOC] Aleith|DM: The subtle magic that allows a person in this world to heroically endure battle wounds or perform superhuman feats is absent here. Within this dead magic area, no person can ever get a result on a d20 roll higher than 40. Likewise, never can any Defense be higher than 30. No matter what their bonus or roll, they have to obey logic and the laws of physics.
Gerald‘ spends a lot of time with his scope out, keeping an eye out on their surroundings now that they can’t count on Phyllis' spells for early warnings.
Zane: "So… OK, stupid question, how are we gonna get up to that memory, if its above the broken tower?"
Aleith|DM: It's just a rock, now. It doesn't even glow, Zane.
Gerald: "Well."
Gerald: "Lets climb up to the top and see if that gets us Close Enough first, then go from there."
Garrett: "Good ol' stone-age engineering."
Gerald: "Maybe a balloon if that doesn't work."
Kasvarina: "Well, the Arc has been reconstructing the memories, even literally…" She looks at Chandrasekhar's new-ish blade.
Gerald: "That too."
Zane: "I'm not sure I could really whip up a reliable catapult… Well, depending on whats left in the ruins. Maybe."
Phyllis: "If we get close enough, the Arc may rebuild the tower and we can climb up."
Phyllis: "That's what you're suggesting, yes?"
Kasvarina nods. "It's a bit of a tall order, though…"
Phyllis: "Does the Arc still work here?"
Aleith|DM: She puts it on. "Yes. It's drawing me towards the tower, though it feels weaker than normal."
Gerald: "Can't imagine she'd know it was pointing above the tower if it wasn't."
Gerald: "…Though it's strange the arc still works and Zane's god rock thing doesn't, yeah."
Phyllis: "I don't want to think about what may happen if, um."
Phyllis: "If it stops working while we're near the top."
Aleith|DM: So, while dodging the occasional patrol, it seems that most of the army is camped in and performing their drills in the eastern Urbem Postulatoris, the ruins of the city's former ghettos.
Aleith|DM: There are forces patrolling the tops of the western Holy Methia, and forces guarding an open gate to the south.
Aleith|DM: Two other gates lead into Holy Methia, but they're shut tight.
Zane: "We… can probably get past the closed gates. I think."
Phyllis: "Go on."
Aleith|DM: The Lance of Triegenes itself, broken, stands atop an island in the middle of the river running between the two halves of the city.
Zane: "Well, it's not fancy and its not flashy but… I have some rope. Garrett and I could likely get over the wall and toss it down to you."
Zane: "Or we could go down the river."
Zane: "Or… I could light some stuff on fire…"
Zane‘ grins.
Chandrasekhar laughs! …looks slightly guilty.
Zane` actually has a look at the river to see if it goes through any gates or walls passing through the city.
Aleith|DM: There’s a bunch of docks on the Holy Methia side, with a couple Danoran vessels tied up. Six small gates pass through the walls from the docks, each guarded by a small detachment of soldiers.
Aleith|DM: A bridge that's seen better days is the sole crossing point across the river from east to west. Soldiers seem to be setup at either side of it, though the western side seems to be mostly snipers practicing shooting at targets setup on the eastern side by the soldiers there.
Zane: "Heh. if they're trying to learn how to fight in a city, they picked the wrong spot for it."
Aleith|DM: The quarter-mile across island in the middle rises 50 feet out of the water at the northern end, sloping to meet the water at the southern edge. There, an old alabaster dock—resembling a cathedral more than a pier—acts
Aleith|DM: as barracks for the island's defenders.
Gerald: "You know,"
Gerald: "A thought occures."
Gerald: "They got people shooting across the river, right? And people on both sides of this island,"
Gerald: "And as soon as we activate this memory, that tower is suddenly going to be whole again which… seems… like it's going to draw a FUCK ton of attention all at once."
Zane: "Yeah."
Gerald: "What's our uh, exit strategy for that?"
Aleith|DM: There's at least a few thousand soldiers all told in the city limits, yeah…
Zane‘ waits to see if anybody else has something. And then, "Fire?"
Gerald: "Yeah I got nothin’ else. We could rig the bridges to blow, but that only buys us some time from ground troops getting to us and doesn't really help with the whole getting out bit."
Gerald: "Pulling their snipers away would help a lot if we're planning on riding the river out."
Zane: "Unless Phyllis can teleport us again, which, being Ursinho, I'm not sure a dead magic zone is even enough to stop her."
Gerald: "I thought whats her face said we had to do it from a very specific location?"
Zane: "Hey Garrett, can you still manipulate the city?"
Garrett: "That is an excellent question." He reaches out with his mind. [The City Comes Alive?]
Phyllis: "Only when we're outside the city again, Gerald."
Garrett: "Hm, nope."
Gerald: "Yeah, s'what I thought. We absolutely don't want every soldier station here coming to investigate the tower all at once."
Gerald: "…Yeah you sold me Zane I'm also leaning towards fire now."
Garrett‘ chuckles. "This is as mundane as it gets. I can’t sense anything at all."
Zane: "Well, far be it for me to say 'I told you so'. Anyway with half the city on fire that should make for a pretty solid distraction."
Aleith|DM: The city is mostly stone…
Aleith|DM: Holy Methia especially.
[OOC] Gerald: what about the land surrounding it tho…
[OOC] Zane: that's why I plan to burn new methia. construction there would be wood becuase this is a dead zone and moving stone the old-fashioned way sucks.
[OOC] Aleith|DM: not so much, though within the three mile radius it's pretty much dead and flat
Aleith|DM: There isn't really a new Methia
Aleith|DM: Though there is a lot more wood in the ruins of Urbem Postulatoris, it's true.
[OOC] Zane: well then I guess I'm burning the docks. And the ships. And Urbem Postulatoris.
[OOC] Garrett: lmao that we asked how to be stealthy)
Phyllis: "… I wonder if it'd be possible to cast magic while the memory's replaying."
[OOC] Zane: gotta be sneaky on the way in, and then this is a good distraction on the way out.
Phyllis: "In that time period, the Great Malice hadn't happened yet."
Gerald: "Hmmm."
Gerald: "That's a good question, definitely try and see when it happens, although we probably shouldn't count on it since even if it DOES work, some of these memories only last a few minutes at best."
Zane: "WOuld be real bad if we were trying that flight thing Kasvarina can do and it wore off mid-air."
Kasvarina: "That would be…unpleasant."
Gerald: "Alright, so fire and scramble on the way out. Sounds good. Way in…"
Gerald‘ glances over at Phyllis and Chandra.
Gerald: "Hm."
Gerald: "Probably stands to reason that tower is super holy ground and they don’t generally let people walk over to it, yeah?"
Aleith|DM: The bridge doesn't actually connect to the island.
Zane: "I still think we can get over the wall. Or barring that we can go for the super-ballsy approach and march through the open gate like we belong here."
[OOC] Gerald: oh
[OOC] Gerald: scratch those last few lines then if we gotta grab a boat regardless lol
Gerald: "Yeah that's fine, we can help Chandra pull himself up from the other end."
Phyllis: "Um. Hm."
Phyllis: "I wonder if I can use those tides to set up [Arcane Gate]."
Aleith|DM: Not inside the city, unfortunately.
Aleith|DM: No tides here, just still water.
Phyllis: "… one would presumably use a boat."
Gerald: "Yeah, once we're over the wall."
Phyllis: "Yeah, leave the entry to Zane, too."
Zane: "Hell, we can flip a canoe over and walk under the river to get to the island."
Zane: "Alright Garrett. You and me on wall duty first, then it's rope down and we'll help the others up."
Phyllis: "Is there, uh."
Phyllis: "A height requirement to that?"
Phyllis: "Or at least height similarity."
Phyllis gestures at an angle between herself and Chandra.
Icecylee pause. Laugh.
Garrett‘ stretches a bit.
Zane: "Singh’s armor will weigh the canoe down. You'll float up. It'll be fine."
Garrett: "Not a problem."
Zane: "First things first though."
Zane‘ nods at Garrett and heads for the wall. The two of them are old hands at this.
Aleith|DM: Perception check to find gaps in the patrols?
Zane` rolled d20+16 and got 14 ( Total: 30 )
Garrett` rolled 1d20+18 and got 2 ( Total: 20 )
Icecylee rolled d20+21 and got 4 ( Total: 25 )
Aleith|DM: Athletics check and stealth check for both Zane and Garrett?
Garrett` rolled 1d20+19 and got 14 ( Total: 33 ) for athletics
Garrett` rolled 1d20+24 and got 3 ( Total: 27 ) for stealth
Zane` rolled 2#1d20+23(1) and got 20 ( Total: 43.0 ) for Athletics and then Stealth
Also rolled 2#1d20+23(2) and got 17 [Total: 40.0 (High), Avg: 17.00]
Total: 83.0, Avg: 18.50
Aleith|DM: You make it to the top. You have to dodge a patrol before you can setup ropes, but once they’re past, you have enough time to get everyone to the top and then back down the other side with nary a trace.
Zane: "Singh remind me *huff huff* to tell you *huff huff* how much you weigh in that armor sometime *huff huff*"
Gerald: "Seriously, have you considered elven chain or something?"
Aleith|DM: There doesn't seem to be any military patrols inside Holy Methia.
Zane: "OK I think… we should be good to go. Empty canoe, upside down before it goes into the water to trap air in it."
Chandrasekhar: "Nothing else feels right."
Gerald: "Just like being back in class."
Aleith|DM: Alright. You cross the city to the wall by the docks, and find a spot between two of the smaller gates to cross the wall again. On the other side, it's only a bit difficult to find a canoe suitable for you to use.
Aleith|DM: Group Stealth check?
Zane‘ rolled 1d20+23 and got 13 ( Total: 36.0 ) for Stealth
Phyllis rolled d20+10 and got 10 ( Total: 20.0 ) for ahahaha ahaha ahaha
Gerald` rolled d20+21 and got 4 ( Total: 25 )
Garrett` rolled 1d20+24 and got 16 ( Total: 40 ) for stealthy
Phyllis takes out her book of the little people, and - oh wait.
Chandrasekhar rolled d20+4 and got 15 ( Total: 19 ) for CLANK CLANK MOTHERFUCKERS I GUESS
Aleith|DM: The river’s a bit deep in the middle between the island and the docks, but you manage to aim it so the current carries you towards the middle of the island. No one seems to notice the log(?) floating downstream as you nudge into the side of the island. Cautiously, you climb up the steep grade on the side of the island, peek over the top, and see several soldiers on the the island, and a few down by the cathedral.
Aleith|DM: Several barricades are scattered across the 200-ft. plain between the barracks and the tower. Red barrels stencilled with a flame icon on them are scattered across the plain as well. Near the tower, a couple of tents are setup near a large metal contraption of some sort.
Aleith|DM: They don't seem to be alerted yet.
Zane‘ silently cackles and rubs his hands together at the sight of the barrels.
Gerald: "(They even marked them for you…)"
Aleith|DM: This close, you can see that there seems to be a wide staircase wrapping around the outside of the tower…
Zane: "(They’re so kind…)"
Garrett: "(Red barrels… are kind of a universal sign of danger.)" He nods. "(Or at least, red markings with these.)"
Phyllis: "(Danor is too dumb to live."
Zane: "You know, a thought occurs to me."
Aleith|DM: Beyond the barricades, between them and the tower lies a wide grassy field some 300 feet across with a few scattered trees.
Aleith|DM: You're just past the barricades from where you climbed up.
Gerald: "Hm? Also huh grass and trees here? Was basically dead everywhere else."
Chandrasekhar: "Should I be concerned, Mr. Bieito?" He grins.
Aleith|DM: They don't seem very healthy.
Zane: "We know the Jierres are in on the conspiracy. We know Nicodemus has a rough idea what we're doing, where we're going, and why. And… those explosive barrels aren't in any other part of the city but here. On the island that we have a reason to visit. After telling Nicdemus to go fuck himself."
Zane: "And here we are, in Jierre territory."
Zane: "I'm going to feel *really stupid* if I led us into a trap."
Aleith|DM: You feel the ground tremble. It repeats every twenty seconds.
Aleith|DM: It seems to be slowly getting closer. The soldiers start looking worried.
Zane: "… No. No way."
Garrett: "…ahahahahahah, oh my gods, it's here."
Aleith|DM: South, at the edge of the city, you see fragments of something barely visible.
Garrett: "If it makes you feel any better, I think this is just some level of serendipity."
Phyllis: "What. What's here?"
Gerald‘ turns around, pulling out his scope and squinting towards the south.
Phyllis: "Oh. Borne. Right?"
Zane: "But of course."
Chandrasekhar: "…ahahahaha. What."
Zane: "Chasing his mother."
Aleith|DM: You here a low moan every once in a while as slowly makes its way to the eastern shore of the Église River, growing more and more visible. It’s the colossus.
Garrett: "To be fair… that'll probably give us the time and distraction we need… assuming these visions aren't too long."
Gerald: "Yeah that's him alright."
Zane: "Lets move it, folks. I want to get to that tower and get clear before we have extra company."
Phyllis: "Agreed."
Gerald: "And yeah, silver lining Garrett. Hah."
Aleith|DM: So. The soldiers are more alert now. Another group stealth check?
Gerald‘ rolled d20+21 and got 8 ( Total: 29 )
[OOC] Zane: fuck, they aren’t even suppused to be looking at us anymore ;_;
Zane‘ rolled 1d20+23 and got 18 ( Total: 41.0 )
Garrett` rolled 1d20+24 and got 4 ( Total: 28 ) for stealthy
Aleith|DM: The snipers seem to be more concerned with looking south, towards the approaching giant, than looking towards the tower.
Phyllis rolled d20+10 and got 15 ( Total: 25.0 )
Chandrasekhar rolled d20+4 and got 13 ( Total: 17 ) for CLANK CLANK MOTHERFUCKERS X2 COMBO
Zane: "Singh you are real pretty but jesus christ I *hate* bringing you along on sneaking missions."
Chandrasekhar: "You’ll appreciate me when everything goes to hell in a handbasket, I promise."
Aleith|DM: As you get closer to the tower, Ernst finds the metal contraption very interesting. It seems to be some kind of turret mounted a kind of vehicle, though it has belts of some sort wrapped around the wheels on either side of its base….
Zane: "I always do but ugghhhh."
Aleith|DM: If there's anyone in the tents, they didn't get up for the commotion happening outside.
Gerald: "Oh."
Gerald: "…Oooh."
Gerald: "We're building one of those when we get home."
Aleith|DM: There's no body guarding the base of the tower, and you can sneak onto the staircase, fifteen-feet wide, running along the outside of the tower.
Phyllis: "That does seem to be a question of 'when' and not 'if,' Chandra."
Aleith|DM: The arc, which was giving off a low thrum before, flickers with magical light as you reach the tower, and in a small area around it—about a 10-ft. radius—now has full magic.
Gerald: "Uh. Hm. Yeah lets definitely hurry. Phyllis do you think you could start prepping a ritual to get us out of here in a hurry or is that a really dangerous and dumb idea?"
Phyllis: "… I was guessing."
Phyllis: "Uh. I'll try and get what I can, but that's probably not feasible on the move."
Garrett: "More like an impossible one, innit?"
Aleith|DM: It's probably going to take you quite some time to climb the tower. Even broken, it's still about 500 feet of stairs to climb.
Gerald: "Hell if I know man."
Aleith|DM: The interior of the Lance of Triegenes is mostly impassable, with the upper levels having collapsed inward centuries ago, destroying most of the lower levels. A single staircase spirals up the exterior of the wall, with no hand-rails or barriers. Every thirty feet a doorway leads inward, but most of the floors have all but collapsed. In places the stairs have shattered, but as Kasvarina nears them the magic from the lost arc reassembles them.
Chandrasekhar: "It's always a 'when', Phyllis."
Aleith|DM: As you get higher up the tower, the radius of the Arc seems to slowly expand, roughly equal to your elevation up the tower.
Phyllis: "Uhh. Hm. Are they reacting? Might this be permanent?"
Gerald: "I seriously doubt that but we'll find out in the news if it is, I'm sure."
Zane: "We'll find out on the way out, I think."
Aleith|DM: About 150 feet up (roughly 9 minutes into the climb), a ghostly figure manifests before you. It's been over a year and a half, but Garrett recognizes the spirit of Nilasa Hume, the elf that Cillian Creed killed at the beginning of Summer in 500 AOV.
Phyllis: "True, we can't dwell on that."
Gerald: "Uh."
Nilasa: "Good evening, constables. It's been a long time, but I wanted to thank you for finding my killing and bringing him to justice."
Garrett: "Wow, hi."
Garrett: "You sure are uh,"
Gerald: "…The fuck are you doing here?????"
Garrett: "A long way from Risur."
Zane: "… You're welcome. Also what Gerald said."
Nilasa: "I think it's got something to do with that tiara your friend is wearing. It's got a weird pull to it right now."
Zane‘ shrugs. "Take your word for it. Sorry you wound up dead in all that."
Nilasa: "I’m not the only one it pulled here, though. There's others up above who are going to want vengeance for when you killed them."
Phyllis: "It seems to be pulling everything but the guards, yes."
Zane‘ grins. "Oh yeah?"
Gerald: "I guess it’s a good thing all the ghost we especially don't like already doubled killed one another if you're a ghost magnet now…"
Zane: "Actually wait hold up. *We* haven't killed hardly anybody."
Phyllis: "It's nonzero."
Garrett: "Well… at least we won't have to re-kill that many, then."
Zane: "Well sure, but I mean, most of the deaths we got blamed for weren't even us."
Chandrasekhar tilts his head. "Isn't everyone who would care at this point double-dead anyways? Ah, well. You can't please everybody."
Nilasa: "I don't know who they are, exactly. But I thought I'd give you a heads up."
Chandrasekhar: "Much appreciated."
Aleith|DM: She fades from view, giving a short wave.
Kasvarina: "An earlier case?"
Kasvarina: "It must really be acting up, because I don't think I ever met her."
Phyllis: "One of our earliest. She was the victim in a murder case."
Chandrasekhar: "Ah, a more innocent time."
Phyllis: "I don't know what all is in play here."
Phyllis: "I don't know if it's just the arc."
Kasvarina: "True."
Aleith|DM: You continue up the stairs.
Aleith|DM: Two hundred feet higher, about a dozen minutes later, Cillian Creed, Nilasa's killer, appears before you.
Zane: "Ahaha I *knew* you were gonna be here."
Aleith|DM: He screams eerily for several seconds, before exploding into a witchoil flood.
Aleith|DM rolled 6#d20+18(1) and got 17 ( Total: 35.0 ) for vs Fort
Also rolled 6#d20+18(2) and got 13 [Total: 31.0 (High), Avg: 13.00]
Also rolled 6#d20+18(3) and got 6 [Total: 24.0 (Low), Avg: 6.00]
Also rolled 6#d20+18(4) and got 16 [Total: 34.0 (High), Avg: 16.00]
Garrett: "Jeez, keep it down-!"
Also rolled 6#d20+18(5) and got 13 [Total: 31.0 (High), Avg: 13.00]
Also rolled 6#d20+18(6) and got 2 [Total: 20.0 (Low), Avg: 2.00]
Total: 175.0, Avg: 11.17
Aleith|DM rolled d20+18 and got 14 ( Total: 32 )
Chandrasekhar: "Shhhhh. No yelling in the ruins."
Aleith|DM: Dealing 10 necrotic damage to Chandrasekhar, Ernst, Gerald, Phyllis, and Kasvarina. Garrett and Zane take 5 necrotic instead.
Zane‘ resists Necrotic thank you armor
Phyllis: "I don’t know what to make of any of this."
Chandrasekhar: "Just… keep climbing. Ghosts will barf on you. We have seen stranger mohya and we will yet see stranger mohya."
Phyllis: I feel like you could be a little less blasé in saying 'ghosts will barf on you.' "
Gerald: "I feel like the fact that I didn't recognize that guy prrrobably means I deserved that barf, just a little."
Aleith|DM: A hundred feet further up, near the top of what's left of the tower, Former Chief Inspector Margaret Saxby materializes in front of you.
Garrett: "Oh! They got around to executing you?"
Gerald: "I recognize *her* though." Gerald flips his blast on to the ghost buster settings and fires it as soon as she appears. Fuck Saxby.
Aleith|DM: She wails, crying out, "I was just trying to serve my country! Just because I was making some friends in higher places…" She continues crying as she pulls out a pistol and shoots her herself in the head.
Aleith|DM rolled d20+20 and got 3 ( Total: 23 )
Aleith|DM: A bullet whips past Gerald's head, missing him.
Gerald: "Yeah, just like last time."
Chandrasekhar shrugs at Phyllis and then makes a rude gesture at Saxby's apparently-suicidal ghost.
Aleith|DM: As you get to the remnants at the top of the tower, 500 feet up, the artifact begins reassembling the building above you level by level so you can keep climbing.
Aleith|DM: As you get there, Kasvarina pauses.
Kasvarina: "There's a memory-no, two-here."
Phyllis: "Well, then."
Zane: "Have at it."
Gerald: "Noted." Gerald takes a peak outside of the window.
Aleith|DM: She waits a minute, and amongst you appears Sovereign Han Jierre and a Danoran soldier, smoking nervously. The three figures are clearly visible, but the world around you flickers with shadows as the lost arc struggles to manifest the past in the dead magic zone.
Aleith|DM: Nicodemus seems to be running down a list as he asks, "what's the status of Golden Cell?"
Gerald: "I definitely hope that thing is proitizing keeping the tower solid above the images…"
Jierre: "My niece Lya has been briefed to take control of this cell, since her predecessor died on Axis Island. Caius Bergeron thinks he’s closing in on the last ziggurat. All that remains is deciding which planes to connect to, and passing that information to the tier four members throughout the continent."
Aleith|DM: Nicodemus nods. "I plan to put the form of the new world up to a vote to the leaders of the various cells."
Garrett: "(Honestly, I'm impressed it's holding it together. Artifacts.)"
Kasvarina smiles and asks, "are you finally abandoning your idealistic 'everyone will get along nicely' plan?"
Nicodemus stamps out his cigarette. "I've never been hesitant to kill those who have outlived their usefulness."
Nicodemus: "How's the colossus coming?"
Kasvarina: "Borne's effectively complete, but one of its designers—Alexander Grappa—has been training
Aleith|DM: the colossus to doubt what we're saying. "
Nicodemus: "Look into that and make sure we won't have a loyalty problem with the colossus."
Kasvarina: "I will, but we trained Borne well. He feels destined to help the Obscurati save the world."
Nicodemus: "How's Lantern Cell doing?"
Gerald: "Wait how the fuck is this taking place at the top of the tower? This was less than two years ago, the tower shouldn't even be here."
Phyllis: "Maybe in this plane."
Aleith|DM: You're at the very peak of what remained of the tower.
Phyllis: "But it may still remain in the Bleak Gate."
Jierre: "This project is our only real bottleneck, because we need to get Luc's lantern working properly, then scale it up to lighthouse size to focus the ritual."
Nicodemus: "What about the plans for Risur?"
Phyllis exclaims "I KNEW IT" but leaves it at that for now, letting things continue
Kasvarina: "Due to its unique rites of rulership, as long as the king of Risur resists, the whole nation will resist. We'll need at least to abduct and brainwash the king, and possibly assassinate him, but the timing has to be right before we perform the ritual. If we move too soon, a new leader could be more hostile and actually oppose us."
Nicodemus: "That's why we have Stanfield. After all the work he's done for us, let him be king. Han, invade the damned city if you have to, but there can be no interference in Flint."
Phyllis: "Oops."
Zane: "Yes, Han. Invade the city."
Zane‘ is almost purring.
Aleith|DM: The memory ends, but after the scene dissolves, it reforms into the next memory event. The three leaders are the same, but dressed differently (Nic has a new body).
Gerald: "I hope this counts as a good enough reason for me to shoot the Jiarres."
Chandrasekhar: "Heh. THAT’s why they were researching the rites of rulership."
Aleith|DM: Nicodemus stands at the edge of the stairs, smoking contemplatively. Kasvarina seems upbeat, and jokes with Nicodemus that he's lucky to have a new body each visit, since with the way he smokes he could never climb all these stairs. Then she explains her recent visit to the Cauldron Hill facility in Flint to see the excavations. Progress has been swift since Stanfield got the rusted gates built into his canal.
Aleith|DM: Han Jierre chides her for so casually mentioning the name of another conspirator, but Nicodemus waves off the concern. That's the reason they come here, he says. No one can hear them, and no divination could ever discover what happened here. He points out that he hasn't seen Kasvarina look so happy in…ever.
Aleith|DM: She pauses, looking almost embarrassed, then says that she spoke with the golems that the Mindmaker has been training. They called the Mindmaker father, and called her—she pauses, laughs—mother.
Aleith|DM: The memory ends, light returns, and there’s a crackle in the air as the colossus Borne lurches forward, stepping fully out of the Dreaming and into the real world. In a voice as loud as a storm it shouts, "Mother!"

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