Zg Session 88

Late morning, Winter 38th.
The Unseen Court has you investigating the 'murder' of Rock Rackus. 'Murder', because Garrett has discovered that Rock's not-exactly-dead body was hidden in the Absurdist's Web by Copperhat on the night of Winter 16th. Your deadline is noon tomorrow, but you may have already cracked the case…?
A half-empty bottle of alchohol was discovered by Rock's 'corpse' which was tainted by spittle from the Borenbog. Mista Nyves reports seeing the swamp fey hanging out at a bar nearby, the Headless Human.
More pressing, however, is that shortly after Garrett discovered this, the tunnel suddenly became darker as the outside light was blocked, and water is flooding the tunnel rapidly. Despite the length of the tunnel, at the rate it's filling you estimate it's only going to take a minute and a half…
[OOC] Aleith|DM: The depth of the water is currently 1 foot deep, and is rising at a rate of 1 foot per round. The tunnel's only 15 feet high.
Aleith|DM: Battle Order: | 38:Ernst | 29:Gerald | 28:Garrett | 27:Phyllis | 26:Chandrasekhar | 25:Zane |
Garrett: "Flooding the -entire- tunnel? Really?" he muses, looking both ways.
Aleith|DM: Ernst! Gerald! Garrett!
Gerald: "So… I got explosives. I imagine one of the two of you has a more elegant way out, though?" Gerald glances at Garrett and Phyllis.
Garrett: "Huh? Yeah, I can make the tunnel give itself yet another exitway."
Zane: "We could just… leave? I mean, the exit's in either direction."
Garrett: "Well, 'make' is a strong word…"
Phyllis: "I can think of several."
Gerald‘ defers to their expertise.
Chandrasekhar: "Ooh, that’ll make travel through this damnable tunnel even more inscrutably weird. I like Garrett's option."
[OOC] Zane: Is it salt water, btw?
Aleith|DM: Yes
Zane sighs. "Its like Beshela is desperately trying to make me make time to strangle her before we go home. I have better things to do, woman!"
Garrett‘ walks up to the side of the tunnel. With a mental nudge, he beckons a 25-foot long portion of the wall to retract into itself. [The City Marches To War]
Gerald: "Who?"
Zane: "Its like you’re allergic to names unless you get to shoot them."
Aleith|DM: Hmmm. Not bad. You figure it'll take about half a minute to get out like that.
Gerald: "There's way too many assholes with names to remember if I'm not bringing them to justice or friends with 'em." \
Zane: "The sea-fey. Worked with the kings sister? Tried to destroy our ship a couple weeks ago?"
Gerald: "Oh. I'm down with shooting her."
Garrett: "-That- was a fun visit to the docks."
Aleith|DM: What are the rest of you up to while Garrett's doing this?
Chandrasekhar: "If a visit to the docks doesn't go hilariously pear-shaped at some point, someone forgot to bring enough of something."
Zane is watching for any sort of attackers. Water is fine, incoming hostiles is not.
Gerald‘ lines his scope up on the opposite end that Zane isn’t watching, keeping both sides covered.
Phyllis sticks a [Mage Hand] into the Absurdist Web. "Forget the big reveal. I'm pulling the real one out so he's safe here."
Garrett: "What? Right now?"
Gerald: "I uh,"
Zane: "Let him sit until we're dry, Ursinho."
Gerald: "I feel like maybe a dead human is safer in the bag,"
Phyllis: "And risk Copperhat getting to him first, while we're distracted?"
Aleith|DM: It's probably gonna take you several rounds to get him out at a minimum, anyway.
Gerald: "That outside of the bag in a flooding tunnel…?"
[OOC] Gerald: than^
Phyllis shrugs. "Have it your way." Instead -
Phyllis: Which way did they enter from? North or south?
Aleith|DM: Southwest probably since you came from the Mortuary.
Phyllis: On the map, relatively.
Aleith|DM: South
Phyllis opens an [Arcane Gate] in that direction and walks further. "This will get us back to the Mortuary, strange tunnel fey geometry aside. This, I'm certain of." [Inexplicable Narration]
Aleith|DM: You see the end of tunnel's been covered over with ice.
Aleith|DM: And two large fey orca spring into being on either end of you.
Gerald: "DID IT WORK?"
Aleith|DM: Though they kinda splash around ineffectively in the shallow water.
Phyllis only emits a strangled "GAH!"
Aleith|DM: Battle Order: | 38:Ernst | 37:Fey Orca B | 29:Gerald | 28:Garrett | 27:Phyllis | 26:Chandrasekhar | 25:Zane | 19:Fey Orca A |
Aleith|DM: Ernst?
Phyllis: "It's been iced over!"
Gerald: "…Chandra have I mentioned how weird this place is?" Gerald says while turning around, starting to laugh quietly.
Garrett: "Goin' up."
Chandrasekhar: "Once or twice. I wonder if they'll be able to fit through the arcane gate…?"
Gerald: "They look far too big but magic so who knows."
Aleith|DM: …probably not.
Garrett: "How slippery is an orca?"
Ernst repositions, then shoots A with a [Greater Magic Weapon]
Gerald‘ rolled 2#d20+26(1) and got 1 ( Total: 27 )
Also rolled 2#d20+26(2) and got 9 [Total: 35]
[OOC] Sugarlips: Grand Total: 62
Aleith|DM: 1 hit!
Aleith|DM: The water is 2 feet deep now
Gerald` rolled 2d8+12 and got 2, 6 ( Total: 20 ) for Gerald, Chandra, Zane gain +8 to hit, +4 dmg and brutal 1 unti his next turn
[OOC] Aleith|DM: 20!
Aleith|DM: Orca B splashes forward and bites at Phyllis with a mouth built for devouring sharks.
Aleith|DM rolled d20+23 and got 5 ( Total: 28 )
Aleith|DM: But misses!
Aleith|DM: Gerald! Garrett! Phyllis!
Phyllis speeds back through the gate, looking at Garrett with bewildered and pleading eyes.
Garrett: "Everyone in the crevasse, we’re goin' up and out."
Garrett: "Thanks tunnel, it's been fun."
Aleith|DM: About half a minute later, you've risen above the level of the tunnel and it gets closed off as the water continues to pour in. About a minute later you exit at the top of the hill, with nary a mark of your passage (Unless Garrett wishes).
Gerald‘ looks like he’s about read to unload on the whale, but then Phyllis is back with the group and they're going up through the ground. "This whole boxless lift thing is kind of terrifying."
Garrett: "Stocke can make a 'ding' noise when we reach the top to let you know when to open your eyes."
Ernst: "Takes a bit of getting used to, certainly."
Ernst glances at Garrett before pausing. He then deploys Stocke with a deadpan look on his face.
Zane: "Well that was exciting."
Aleith|DM: The sight of the mid-day sky greets you upon your exit from the hill.
Garrett‘ takes a deep breath once they’re up and out. He gives the hill a pat and leaves no trace.
Zane: "Alright, now lets see about Rock."
Zane starts digging into the Absurdists Web.
Gerald: "How did they even get the whales into the tunnel…"
Zane: "Magic."
Garrett: "-Fey- magic."
Gerald: "That's a hell of a lot of effort for a practical joke they couldn't even be sure they'd need."
Garrett: "I don't know, maybe the orcas were supposed to… further trap us in there, or something."
Zane shrugs. "Beshela's the arch-fey of the sea. All things considered I'll take 'poor tactical choice orcas' over something actually effective and dangerous any day."
Gerald: "Whales! In a puddle! There's no way that was supposed to be practical and not a joke."
Phyllis: "The puddle was going to rise."
Chandrasekhar: "I think it was for the effect, yeah. Like… conspicuous consumption to impress visiting dignitaries."
Zane: "'When tweedle beetles battle and the battles in a puddle and the puddles in a bottle on a noodle-eating poodle…'"
Garrett: "Hah!"
Gerald: "…???"
Zane: "Sometimes things are just silly, Gerald."
Chandrasekhar giggles.
Gerald‘ sighs.
Chandrasekhar: "I appreciate you, Mr. Bieito."
Zane: "I know."
Zane finally hauls Rackus out of the web.
Rock locks around slowly, startled. "Wha…? Da constables…?" He still seems to be a bit under the influence of something.
[OOC] Aleith|DM: *looks around
Gerald: "Wait what? I thought only dead people went in there."
Zane: "Nope. It’s very, very useful."
Garrett: "Ugh, and we've no coffee on hand."
Zane: "Also I think he's still slightly stoned from whatever-that-was drool in his drink."
Zane hooks a shoulder under Rock's arms and starts walking.
Phyllis: "There should be a fountain we can take him to for that, I think."
Zane: "Ah, useful."
Aleith|DM: Are you making any notion of trying to hide Rock on the way to the fountain?
Garrett: "At least otherwise he doesn't seem too worse for wear."
Zane probably shoult put his grey rain cloak over him, yeah.
Aleith|DM: The fountain's several minutes away, but after a few minutes, Rock's head clears up…though he's still somewhat drunk. It's probably easier to get rest of the drink out of his system… Afterwords, he's got a headache, and needs some water, but the Flashdrought Fountain otherwise gets the alchohol and the Borenbog spittle out of his system.
Aleith|DM: Several fey wave at you and a couple ask for autographs, but Zane's artful draping of the cloak manages to hide Rock from inquiring eyes.
Zane: "Alright then. Good as new, such as it is. Lets go stop a war."
Chandrasekhar showboats to draw attention from the docker, you don't see -that- every day.
Rock: "Wait, what happened? When'd you get here?"
Zane: "Yesterday. You've been asleep for the better part of two weeks, basically."
Chandrasekhar: "Don't worry about it, friend. It'll all make sense in a moment." This statement is not strictly true!
Garrett: "Long story, longer adventure."
[OOC] Aleith|DM: Three, but yes
Phyllis helps with some minor illusory cantrips, though at the moment she has nothing concrete in terms of powers or rituals to help on that front. (basically uh arcana and 'i use illusions a lot' if it applies)
Zane: "And we got hired on to solve your murder, except you weren't actually killed. Though I am curious where the fake body came from now."
Phyllis: "Dreamt up out of thin air, whole cloth."
Aleith|DM: Alright. Heading to the Thistle Palace to see the Unseen Court, then?
Phyllis: "You're in the realm where mind prevails over - and eventually becomes - matter."
Zane: "I'll take your word for it."
[OOC] Zane: yep
Garrett: "You're going to hear a number of tales about your death, all of which are greatly exaggerated."
Phyllis: "You're very much alive."
Rock: "…huh."
Zane: "Your life is weird, dude."
Rock: "I kinda remember walking through the Krog Tunnel, finding a bottle of drink on the ground, taking a drink….and then it went dark when I dropped my…torch? Next thing I know I was seeing you guys."
Garrett: "Before we go too far, though- did you have any dealings with the Hedgehog Court at all, or were your attentions mostly focused on Thisraldion?" he asks, in a lower tone.
Zane: "Yeah that bottle was loaded with knock-out juice, basically."
Gerald: "Don't…"
Phyllis: "People keep wanting you dead, Rock. Any idea why?"
Gerald: "Don't pick up strange bottles of hooch and then drink from them in the future, okay? Strictly from pubs."
Rock: "I went and saw the Hedgehog Court a lot. You know, fight the power and stuff? I didn't get into it in Flint, like I shoulda, but it just made sense here, you know?"
Zane: "Even though you're boning the power here?"
Rock laughs. "Well, business and pleasure are separate things."
Phyllis: "Speaking of Flint, we really need to get back there soon."
Garrett‘ laughs along. "I guess this was a death that was strictly business, then."
Zane: "That is the plan, Ursinho. The murder is solved, our job is done."
Garrett: "Yeah, the fey orcas really put me out of the mood. 24 hours isn’t nearly enough time to top that."
Phyllis: "Yes, well, as long as they're satisfied with this result instead of finding a cause for war."
Zane heading for the Thistle Palace. "I'm not a fey constable. They can go to war if they want. This place is way outside my bailiwick."
Garrett: "I guess they could always kill him again while he's right there with us and just use the other dead-Rackus to keep up the cause."
Garrett‘ looks at Rock. "(You should probably come with us afterward?)"
Phyllis: "Yet they still matter in terms of … I don’t know if they're domestic or international, really. It's complicated."
Garrett: "Extraplanar!"
Phyllis: "But given that our kingdom derives its power from - thank you, Garrett - fey pacts, I'd advise that we still take interest in their affairs, 'bailiwick' or no."
Garrett: "We'll just have to gauge their reaction, then."
Garrett: "Do you think they'd ever expect that we'd succeed?"
Phyllis: "They know us from Rock's songs."
Zane: "Sure, I'm not opposed. Except for when their interests seem to be holding me back from doing my day job, like keeping my king from getting murdered. Then its a matter of priority."
Phyllis: "So, possibly."
Chandrasekhar: "They're fey. They wouldn't have ruled it out as a possibility."
Chandrasekhar: "Probably have poems composed in advance for even the unlikely outcomes."
Aleith|DM: Alright. You arrive there about half an hour later. The rangale guards outside ask you where you're headed.
Zane: "Throne room. We have a report for the boss."
Phyllis: "It's only been … is it lunch yet?"
Aleith|DM: Thereabouts.
Aleith|DM: You're about 24 hours early.
Aleith|DM: A pixie shows you the way back to the Chamber of the Unseen Court, in a bit more of a direct route than this morning.
Garrett: "(That wasn't -nearly- enough right turns…)"
Phyllis: "(It was just the right amount.)"
Aleith|DM: In the chamber, Thisraldion is reading a book on the throne, blade leaning against the throne. Karrest and Atsla stop discussing something at the edge of the room when they see you come in. Thisraldion looks up from his book as the pixie announces you. "Back so soon, constables? Looking to interview us?"
Garrett: "Howdy, folks, hope you didn't get out your /mourning/ wear even though the sun hits its zenith!"
Gerald: "No we figured it out already."
Zane pulls the cloak off Rock. "Someone is playing you for suckers to start a war."
Chandrasekhar bows, immediately and elaborately, and looks a *little* bit smug.
Zane puts his cloak back on. "You're welcome."
Thisraldion: "Rock? Dearest?!"
Aleith|DM: The other fey in the room gasp.
Phyllis thumbs through one of her tomes. [Manual of Expansive Learning] This… might come in handy. [Refocus] to regain the use of [Arcane Gate], [Manual of Expansive Learning] minor action to swap it out for [Illusory Wall].
Garrett: "(Oh, by the way-)" he asides to Rock. "(Thisraldion killed the other-you. Just so you know.)"
Rock: "Uh, hi? I heard I'm supposed to be dead or somethin'?"
[OOC] Phyllis: wait no i did that wrong
[OOC] Phyllis: disregard me
Aleith|DM: He looks at Garrett in surprise, startled.
Phyllis: "(Well, both courts did.)"
Thisraldion: "Well, this is certainly something, constables. What's the explanation behind all of this?"
Phyllis: "Does Copperhat have any reason to incite conflict between the courts?"
Gerald‘ levels a flat, questioning look at Thisraldion.
Thisraldion’s mask tilts downward, a hand coming up in the thinking pose. "Copperhat, you say? We keep him around because he's amusing, but I never would have thought…"
Thisraldion: "Is he the culprit, then?"
Garrett: "Mmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm…. he's responsible for Rock disappearing…"
Garrett: "But not -dying-."
Zane: "He had Rocks unconscious self stashed in a pocket hanky that he loaned us."
Phyllis: "He is at least responsible for the abduction, if not the plot."
Thisraldion: "And you have evidence of this?"
Garrett: "The tunnel is a very reliable witness."
Phyllis: "Zane, if I may step into the Absurdist's Web."
Phyllis: "Please pull me out shortly."
Zane: "The cynic in me wants th say 'you already have'."
Zane starts unfolding the web.
Phyllis puts one foot in, followed by the other, then wriggles her way through.
Zane: "This is a neat little bit of magic. Complete stasis of anything you wrap up in it, for a month."
Aleith|DM: Atsla nods thoughtfully.
Phyllis always wondered what it looks like in here.
Zane: "Mind you I'm not leaving Phyllis in it for a month. She does all our paperwork."
Aleith|DM: Well, you don't get to see it for long because then you kinda freeze up. But there's a lot of webbing and various items you can't quite make out all over the place…
Aleith|DM: Karrest laughs.
Zane collapses the web and tucks it into his pocket. "Ta-da."
Karrest: "Truly the devil of beauracracy."
Zane then pulls it out and starts unfolding it again. "Yeah. But she's got all the ins and outs of the system memorized. I cant even imagine all the red tape she saves us from."
Zane: "Anyway, Copperhat stowed Rock in here and left a fake body to be mutilated. I have no idea why, that wasn't part of the job. But here's a very un-murdered Rock so you can call off the war between Courts for now."
Chandrasekhar: "We were going to do a whole show, but instead you get the program notes."
Zane: "Normally I'd love to draw this out for you, but yeah we're in a hurry."
Ernst: "The play wouldn't sell. Too unbelievable."
Garrett: "There were going to be orcas and everything, it was totally believable."
Thisraldion applauds. "Very well. I do realize you're short on time."
Zane nods politely. "Your understanding is appreciated."
Phyllis peeks her head out from the web as Zane manages to grab onto a shoulder or foot or something. " - you were supposed to leave me in there for at least a -few- moments. Show off the stasis."
Zane: "Fine."
Zane stuffs her back in.
Zane: "Some people."
Phyllis: " - waitwaitwaitwa - "
Gerald‘ .oO(Are we leaving out the part about Garrett seeing whatsherinvisible tits doing the slicing?)
Phyllis protests, only to be frozen again.
Thisraldion: "Congratulations on a job well done. I’ll send an emissary to the Hedgehog Court to let them know that our dear Rock Rackus is not, in fact, dead, and we'll discuss terms about this war."
Zane: "Excellent."
Zane then re-releases the Phyllis.
Phyllis: " - it!"
Thisraldion: "Regretfully, I mispoke about being able to send you back to the Waking. We are investigating a way for you to return right now. For some reason, the way between the two worlds is blocked even such that none of us have the power to send you back currently."
Phyllis tries to stand up and regain her dignity after what was probably a not very dignified exit.
Zane makes a noise somewhere between a growl and a steam whistle, and the blood vessles in his eyes visibly swell.
Zane: "You 'mis-spoke'."
Garrett‘ sighs. "And you all had an entire four hours."
Thisraldion: "I expected your investigation to take longer, but you’re more competent than even Rock led us to believe."
Gerald: "I mean, we can pull up ALL of the gritty little details if we have nothing better to do than stay here…"
Zane: "Somebody around here needs to be, I guess."
Phyllis: "… no, there may be truth to that. My Sendings - they were interfered with."
Garrett: "Just go ahead and catch us up with the latest development, then."
Garrett: "Put us at the endpoint and we'll work a way through- we really, really do have a few time constraints here."
Phyllis: "Would you like any assistance with that investigation?"
Thisraldion: "We have people investigating in the Honourable Halls of Accumulated Wisdom, if you'd care to take a look. Can you read Fey?"
Chandrasekhar: "…what this means is that we have a second mystery to solve, I imagine. What do we know of that might block the ways-between?"
Phyllis: "Not natively, but give me ten minutes and I can."
Thisraldion: "Normally, it would be a simple matter to send you back ourselves. But the last couple months have been increasingly difficult until a couple weeks ago when it stopped being possible at all for us."
Gerald: "Fucking lanterns."
Thisraldion: "Otherwise, you could apprehend Copperhat for kidnapping, I suppose, and whatever other charges you can come up with."
Phyllis: "Beshela's a suespect, though unconfirmed. Someone to do with water."
Karrest: "Hey, big guy. We could do some sparring if you want to burn off that anger."
Chandrasekhar: "Our opponent seeks to realign the planes. I doubt that timing's a coincidence-" -and then he glances between Zane and Karrest. If that happens, he totally wants to watch.
Zane looks at Karrest. "… Yeah, OK."
Garrett‘ mouths ’thank you' toward Karrest.
Phyllis: "Chandra. Think of what created the divide in our planes to begin with."
Phyllis: "… actually, I'm not sure if the Rites of Rulership created the Dreaming, or if the Dreaming merely bled into Risur and Kelland's terms just laid out border lines as such."
Aleith|DM: Karrest works with Zane for a couple hours, and Zane gets exposed to fey swordfighting. [Learned Dramatic Reversal]
Phyllis: "Either way. If our adversary cuts off the Dreaming from the Waking for good, imagine what that means for the more … um."
Phyllis: "Extra-extra-planar foes that we face, the ones in the deepest parts of the Malice and from Giddim."
Phyllis: "If one cuts off our thoughts and dreams, then that may also cut off humanity's thoughtform defenses."
Garrett: "Hmm… I suppose I could take a look, though I think the higher-concepts may escape me."
Aleith|DM: At the very least, you can help hunt down appropriate books to check.
Phyllis: "Glad to hear it, Garrett."
Aleith|DM: Any other plans while you're here, or just resting/researching until you have a exit route?
Zane bows politely to Lord Karrest at the end of the sparring session. "Thank you. That was incredibly instructive."
Karrest guffaws. "You're a sight yourself. I haven't even seen some of those weapons before."
Zane grins. "Yeah, some of them are… Well I'm not sure they're entirely right, I was working off old drawings."
Phyllis: Maybe a conversation with Furg, sometime, who she's now apparently indebted to? But.
Garrett‘ psych, [Secrets of the City], usin’ my Streetwise score, heard it from a spider who sat down beside her, etc etc.
Phyllis: "Rock. You never contacted me about those scrolls again, did you?"
Rock: "Errr. I never did find those before I came here with Copperhat. Who apparently kidnapped me. Fey, huh? What can you do?"
Phyllis: "Lots of things." She holds up the Book of Kelland, opened midway, to his face.
Aleith|DM: Three stories tall, with three basement levels, the Honorable Halls of Accumulated Wisdom is filled with labyrinthine rows of books, scrolls, bound codices, and loose bundles held together by twine, ranging in content from cyclops recipes to pixie philosophy to forbidden spellbooks.
Aleith|DM: A pair of ancient pixie sisters named Alba and Zanel, wrinkled, doddering, and flirtatious, own the library, which is served by dozens of younger pixies who sort and search.
Aleith|DM: They put Phyllis and Garrett to work with the investigation.
Rock: "Huh. Never knew that about our founder. Didn't pay too much attention in History class though."
Phyllis: "Feel free to read that while I help out here."
Garrett‘ scrambles all up and down to retrieve books and passages- turns out pixies don’t have much use for ladders, what with wings and all.
Phyllis: "Lose that book under the pain of death, despite the fact that we just saved your hide."
Aleith|DM: It's not until late the next morning that you make much headway. Between Garrett digging up various books, and Phyllis leafing through all of them along with some other pixies, you find an older history book, and a few about the Fey Titans. Between those and the Book of Kelland you got from Furg the Toadstool Sage, you come up with the following:
Aleith|DM: First, the fey titans exist in both the Dreaming and the Waking, since they both link and divide the two realms. They can grant their minions the power to be in either place with ease and, more importantly, they can banish intruders. This provides a way for you to get back to the Waking—either become minions of a fey titan, or anger one enough to get expelled (but not so much to get outright killed).
Phyllis: " - actually hold on, I need that back."
Aleith|DM: Second, the book contains the words used by Kelland’s daughter to taunt the Voice of Rot. You could use this to draw the titan’s ire. There are other fey titans, of course, but none of them are awake, and it seems like you're in a hurry.
Aleith|DM: Third—according to a passage about King Dukain—retrieving the Sword of the Black Needles would reinitiate the last battle the Voice of Rot had with Risur five centuries ago. Obviously, even great warriors like you would have no chance of defeating the fey titan, but if you intentionally surrendered, the ancient pact between Risur and the fey titans would force the Voice of Rot to banish you all back to the Waking.
Aleith|DM: There would, of course, be some small negative consequences. The Voice of Rot would be able to move freely from his domain and attempt to claim more territory for himself. But that can be dealt with later, once the king is saved and he can get around to beating the colossal serpent himself.
Phyllis sloooowly closes a book shut as she turns over the options in her head. "Well. At a base level…" She summarizes the points above.
Garrett: "He owes us one anyway… right?"
Gerald: "I doubt he sees it that way, but, yeah."
Aleith|DM: Thisraldion calls up the Great Hunt to get you over to the High Bayou to meet with the Voice of Rot. In the meantime, you have a quick lunch while you wait for them to arrive.
Garrett: "The way I see it is-"
Garrett: "He can either do us a solid or we ruin his day enough to make him do it anyway."
Gerald: "Well yeah."
Garrett: "And a day in fey titan time is a long time."
Phyllis: "'Please, dire fox, don't throw us into that briar patch!'" She says it as if she expects people to recognize the story, but… nobody read that one, Phyllis.
Aleith|DM: A dozen fey knights, lead by Riffian, arrive with their steeds to carry you to the Bayou.
Zane: "'But the mud child said nothing, and Brer Rabbit, he just laid low…'"
Aleith|DM: Andrei von Wolfgang leaves with you, but Rock says he's going to stay to try and help settle things between the two Courts. Though the fighting has stop, tempers are still simmering.
Zane: "Try not to die again, OK?"
Phyllis: "And watch what you drink."
Rock: "I'll do my best. Can't let a little thing like that stand in my way." He nods to Phyllis. "I'll be more careful. Jealous fans or fey machinations, either one is trouble."
Chandrasekhar: "Get some good material for your next hit." He nods sagely.
Phyllis: "I think he already did?"
Rock: "Right, right. I'm working on something for that already. Thanks again."
Garrett: "Good luck, Rock! I think they're still planning on putting a statue of you in the tunnel."
Aleith|DM: Chandrasekhar, while you were waiting for Phyllis' investigation to finish, Thisraldion and Sallin approached you about the possibility of taking up Ekossigan's spot on the Unseen Court.
[OOC] Zane: Oh shit son
Phyllis: "In any case. Favor or not, it's still in any Fey's best interest to keep … uh. How do I put this."
Aleith|DM: They'd like you to serve as an ambassador of the Unseen Court in the Waking for the moment. Continue to work for Risur, but steer them to favor the fey, and when your mission is complete, return and take your throne.
Aleith|DM: Even Thisraldion, who has come to accept that the people of the Waking will continue to use technology, would still prefer his Waking allies to show more care for the effects their technology has on the Dreaming.
Phyllis: "To oppose the plans of someone who is deliberately exporting machinery and industry (and gears and spinny things and blighted areas) to Risur."
Chandrasekhar will… certainly consider that, at the very least. If the Waking and the Dreaming are to continue existing, there must be harmony between the two; there must be bridges built. This is what he has worked for; this is what he will continue to work for.
Aleith|DM: Before you leave, the mask you designed has been created, and is presented to you in a ceremony that morning. When you don the mask, your body becomes invisible much like the others.
Gerald‘ opens mouth, closes mouth.
Zane starts laughing.
Garrett: "Lookin’ good, Chandra!"
Aleith|DM: As you mount up to leave, the wounded warriors on the Grand Lawn begin signing one of Rock's hit songs, I had a Threeway, which recounts the singer getting into trouble for having two lovers at once. The injured fey have turned it into something of a drinking song, toasting as the situation gets worse and worse for the man in the middle.
Aleith|DM: Meanwhile a group of fey wandering over from the Hedgehogcontrolled wing of the palace starts singing a traditional song commemorating a famous battle.
Phyllis observes the ceremony with what can best be described as reserved pride.
Aleith|DM: Tensions begin to mount since neither side likes their song being interrupted.
Aleith|DM: Riffian completely ignores the goings on as he gets you ready on your mounts.
Garrett‘ laughs. "Ohh, I’ll have to take time-off and do a jaunt down to watch this proper, when it's all said and done."
Garrett: "Assuming our planar composition isn't irrocably fucked in the next, oh, week or so…"
Zane: "So curiosity compells me to ask. Given the title, what do you hunt?"
Riffian: "Anything and almost everything. The Father of Thunder's herds are where we get our steeds from, and are a personal favourite of mine."
Zane: "Huh."
Aleith|DM: As you ride away, Sallin encourages you to deal with your own troubles, and leave the Dreaming to lie in the bed it has made. You ride away to the sounds of a brawl beginning on the palace lawn.
Garrett: "That is exactly what we chose to do." He leaaaaans back in the saddle.
Aleith|DM: The twelve-hour ride to the High Bayou passes in a blur of grandiose music played by the Great Hunt’s trumpeters (which magically have full orchestral accompaniment), while you tromp through the most beautiful landscapes New Zeala- er, Risur has to offer. The sun sets, and the riders hold forth torches.
Phyllis: "Rock, you'd better keep the peace like you said…"
Aleith|DM: The last hour is spent sprinting through the High Bayou, since the magical steeds can run across the bog water. Occasionally giant spiders or crocodiles try to ambush the group, but the Great Hunt tears through them and presses onward with nary a pause to shout huzzah.
Aleith|DM: Distant drums thrum faintly beneath the patter of drizzle, and dim red eyes watch from beneath trees and the edges of brush. Occasionally an ettercap will scuttle out of their path. Sometimes they sit completely still, only turning their heads atop husked, decayed bodies.
Zane made sure to give Mista Nyves another blade for services rendered. This time it was the obsidian karambit.
Aleith|DM: Mista seems to have disappeared some time after you showed up at the palace with Rock.
Aleith|DM: Fey hounds guide the group higher and higher across hills and peaks shrouded in webs and choked with marsh plants. Occasionally they lose the trail and Phyllis must intone the words from the Book of Kelland: "Lies are dead words made to walk. O Voice of Rot, do you fear to talk?"
Aleith|DM: A rumble, almost inaudibly deep, replies, "Talk we shall."
Aleith|DM: The hounds bark and resume their tracking, mile after mile, until finally, through rain-darkened skies, a flash of lightning reveals the Black Needles. Spires of stone rise up amid berms of spider webs. The peaks ascend rapidly and roughly, such that even the Great Hunt's horses cannot climb them. From afar the tallest ridge seems insurmountable, but something in the shape of the webs and tree canopy suggests a stone structure there.
Garrett‘ rubs his face with his hands and wakes up a bit. "(Here we go.)"
Aleith|DM: Riffian halts his riders. "We can’t go any further."
Gerald: "Fair enough."
Zane: "Thats OK, we got it from here. Thanks for the ride."
Gerald: "Thanks for the lift."
Riffian: "Each fey titan has a weakness. The Father of Thunder is a drunkard. The Ash Wolf is protective of other wolves. And the Voice of Rot can be tricked into talking when it could be fighting."
Phyllis: "Thank you for accompanying us." She bows with some respect.
Garrett: "It's a good thing we love talking and fighting in equal measures."
Zane slides off his horse and nods. "I'd rather talk than fight anyway, dealing with something that size."
Garrett‘ hops off, giving a casual wave to the other riders.
Riffian: "I shall have a hound guide you to your batttle, and I promiese you my knights will defend your flank from any of the Voice of Rot’s worshippers. But my oaths forbid me from fighting a fey titan." He seems incredibly forlorn about this.
Chandrasekhar wears a mask, half-silver and half-gold split down the middle; modeled after his own face but with a serene but fierce smile. Sun and moon, Waking and Dreaming, a bridge between things. …it's hard to tell that the rest of him's invisible, with all the armour he wears. Maybe that's deliberate? He's a very -visible- Unseen.
Phyllis: "What of Granny Allswell and She Who Writhes?"
Phyllis: "Just out of curiosity."
Gerald: "You know…"
Gerald: "It's gunna be really hard to tell when you're making that creepy grin now, Chandra."
Phyllis: "No, it won't."
Zane chuckles.
Riffian: "Granny Allswell's very interested in children, and taking them for herself. She Who Writhes…well, she's not the most intelligent of the titans. It can be easy to trick her."
Phyllis: "Good to know, at least."
Phyllis: "Hopefully we can get through this without fighting too much?"
Chandrasekhar: "That seems to be a running theme, for us."
Aleith|DM: You make the final ascent alone, covering a quarter mile as the hound guides through the midnight rain. Finally you climb over a berm of webs and arrive at the bottom of one of the stone spires. The side of the hundred-foot high spire is sheer cliff streaked with rain, and scraggly forest grows atop it. Immense carvings along the cliffs have been eroded by time and covered by brush, but they show that the natives of this swamp worship the Voice of Rot here.
Chandrasekhar: "There are worse melodies."
Aleith|DM: The hound has led them to a canyon of sorts, cut into the side of the peak. A massive and ancient stone staircase ascends up the middle of the canyon to the top of the spire, but millennia of webs have grown across it, creating tiers of dammed pools. Nothing of interest is on top of it, other than a swath of wilting grass amid the forest.
Aleith|DM: The drizzle fades, the clouds part, and a beam of moonlight shines upon a spot halfway up the massive staircase. Barely visible through a wall of spider webs, the glint of pale light reflects off a metal blade stuck in the trunk of a black, rotted, and fallen tree.
Zane: "… No way."
Aleith|DM: From beside you, fifty feet away, the water stirs. With a slowness only possible for something so immense, coils rise up from amid sunken trees. A withered, antlered skull twenty feet long sways and drips as it pulls free of the swamp. Unlike the last time you saw it, though its body is still certainly a serpent, its skull is that of some other beast. A single eye socket glares at you, dull and gray.
Aleith|DM: Then the eye lights up and locks on them. "Speak," says the Voice of Rot. "Speak, agents of King Kelland. And do not deceive, for I know when a lie is told."
Gerald: "So I take it you remember us, right?"
Voice of Rot: "You dealt with the reasoning one from beyond the stars."
Zane: "King Aodhan now. It has been a while since we last spoke, Voice of Rot."
Gerald: "Awesome. Could you send us back home, then?"
Voice of Rot: "Nay."
Zane keeps looking up the hill at the sword stuck in the tree. "WOuld yo ube willing to tell us why not?"
Voice of Rot: "There is no reason for me to send you home."
Zane: "There's no reason for you NOT to send us home…"
Garrett: "For old time's sake."
Gerald: "Aside from the whole misadventure you sent us on, which we completedly with style and grace, you mean?"
Phyllis holds up a hand, requesting silence. "Yes, there is."
Garrett‘ lets Phyllis handle this.
Voice of Rot: "If that is all you came here for, then begone. I will not be regarded as a simple travel guide."
Zane: "Shit. If it was simple we wouldn’t bother you."
Phyllis: "We seek to return home to maintain the current stability of our worlds. We dealt with only one entity from beyond the stars. If we don't return home, there may be more."
Chandrasekhar snorts amusedly, half-turned to Phyllis with an eyebrow raised. (Not that anyone can tell.)
Phyllis: "There exists a being right now that, from the Waking, has been filling our worlds with blighted areas. You can't approach our capital, Flint, anymore, I take it?"
Phyllis: "We share a common enemy. A third party, an invader to both our domains."
Phyllis: "This enemy seeks to assassinate the king."
Phyllis: "If the rites of rulership are undone, so is your first line of defense against an enemy you are ill-suited to fight."
Phyllis: "You need us."
Phyllis: "Lest the blight and noise spread, and consume us all."
Phyllis: "It's in your best interest to keep your current challenge - " she gestures up the hill, presumably where the sword is " - on pause."
[OOC] Phyllis: Diplomacy] at some point?
Voice of Rot: "Kings come and go."
Gerald: "Holy shit man,"
Phyllis: "Yourself included? I am speaking of a being that threatens to end the very age we're in."
Gerald: "What are you even doing right now? Sitting down? We did you a favor, you can do us one in return. You aren't even busy. We'd go back the eays way if we COULD, but there's magic fucking with those."
Phyllis: "Kings, yes, but titans? The Dreaming itself?"
Phyllis: "I am not even speaking in half-truths. I am speaking with naked urgency. You see lies. You see this."
Voice of Rot: "It matters not. You matter not. If this age passes, then so it shall be."
Gerald: "Can I shoot him?"
Phyllis: "Gerald. No."
Gerald: "He's being kind of unreasonable and I doubt it'd hurt." Frown.
Zane has been unobtrusively moving upward while Phyllis and the Voice have been debating.
Ernst quietly chuckles at Gerald.
Aleith|DM: Stealth check?
Aleith|DM: Also Diplomacy for Phyllis
Zane rolled d20+24 and got 13 ( Total: 37 )
Chandrasekhar rolls his eyes. Thank goodness for the mask. "I mean, it'd hurt -us-. We have places to be. And this bemoldened salamander clearly doesn't care if there's a world left for things to rot in…"
Phyllis: "Have you really made peace with the thought of yourself and the other Titans ending, though?"
Aleith|DM: The Voice of Rot doesn't notice you moving away from the group.
Phyllis: "It's at such a larger scale. This is bigger than you."
Voice of Rot: "The death of the world is the end of all things. What am I to stop it?"
Phyllis casts [Suggestion], but not to dominate - merely to convey what can't be conveyed in speech. "What was Kelland to start a pact with you? The task at hand might be large, but the smaller ones can prevail."
Zane rolled d20+24 and got 2 ( Total: 26 )
Chandrasekhar: "… you are precisely the guardian of the liminal space between is and was, O Voice."
Phyllis rolled d20+35 and got 7 ( Total: 42.0 ) for Suggestion to swap Arcana, Book of Kelland +5
Aleith|DM: Zane continues unnoticed as the Titan is distracted.
[OOC] Phyllis: Oh also +2 more from my familiar
[OOC] Phyllis: … also kind of wanting to do the whole 'roll twice take the higher' thing she has too if that's allowable
[OOC] Aleith|DM: you don't need it yet
Aleith|DM: Another stealth check?
Zane rolled d20+24 and got 18 ( Total: 42 )
[OOC] Zane: one more round…
Aleith|DM: As you climb up to the next few steps, the Voice of Rot suddenly shouts, "Tricksters! You are like me, but I have no equal! You challenge, and I greet your deaths gladly."
Aleith|DM: Suddenly, nearly a couple dozen rotting ettercaps spring from the bayou, surround you and Zane.
Gerald: "You're kind of a dick, you know that?"
Garrett: "He did say we are like him, and, well."
Chandrasekhar: "I will take that as a compliment!" He brandishes his blade. This will be exciting.
Phyllis: "Fine! Then we finish what Dukain started!"

Unless otherwise stated, the content of this page is licensed under Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 License